Art and Technique of the Sensation Method
ONE WISH, Sixth international WISH congress Jürgen Hansel
Since 2012 the members and lecturers of the World Institute for Sensation Homeopathy (WISH) have been regularly holding their international congress to exchange ideas about the practice of the sensation method and inform their colleagues of the latest developments. Since this year’s major meeting in Berlin had to be cancelled due to the pandemic, a webinar was held instead from 7th to 11th May, the first online conference of its kind, with the title ONE WISH. The current WISH president Jürgen Weiland used the international scope of the online format with 200 participants from 24 countries to present the latest developments and the current state of play of the sensation method, using an unusual format: in discussion with Weiland, nine of the most important protagonists of this method described their professional development and the significance of the level of deep sensation in their practice before going on to describe their personal working style and the particular approach they deploy when using the method.
Artistic forms of casetaking: The focus of the method is the level of vital sensation, at which the remedy substance expresses itself through the choice of words and gestures in a universal form that is not specific to human beings. To reach this deep level with patients, it is necessary to deploy a special discussion technique, or rather a casetaking art, as stressed by Anne Schadde in her introductory talk. In her experience knowledge and skill must be supplemented with fantasy, inspiration and intuition, to detect the vital sensation that is fundamental to a person’s life and accordingly to identify the optimal remedy. She described this subtle process, which can certainly lead to incorrect prescriptions in the first instance, via the case of a woman with burnout, who was finally healed with the little-known remedy Menyanthes. For this remedy Schadde identified the vital sensation as “tense spring”. Due to her own trituration experience with the Gentian family, she was able to locate bogbean (also known as buckbean) in the Gentianaceae family and thereby formulate a hypothesis for the vital sensation of this remedy family in terms of “contraction, cramp and tension”.
Imagination and the power of pictures: The art of bringing the vital sensation to consciousness during casetaking was a major theme in most online presentations and it was fascinating to hear each presenter’s approach to this central issue of the sensation method. A comparison of the different methods to reach the deep level of experience underlies Jayesh Shah’s insight: “Imagination is the springboard to sensation”. For many years the Indian homeopath has been travelling with his patients on a journey to their inner picture worlds, a process that often leads to the selection of the simillimum but which can be healing in its own right, even without the administration of a homeopathic remedy. Shah demonstrated the typical process of his method with the example of a furious boy who imagines the story of two people in terms of a victim-offender relationship. The healing effect of this process was supplemented in this case with the remedy Nux vomica.
Mike Keszler has also learnt in his practice to trust the positive effect of inner pictures. In his casetaking a patient afflicted with dreadful pain visualises a wolf that had bitten into his shoulder. During the process of imagination he gave up resisting this attack, becoming like water, at which point the pain melted away. The patient thereby regained trust in his vital force and healing could take place, long before he could take the simillimum Lac asinum. For Dinesh Chauhan working with pictures is a central part of his personal casetaking art, which he describes as a process of intuitive case witnessing. He emphasizes the right hemisphere of the brain which plays the key role with its holistic perception. According to their inclination and abilities, he lets his patients sketch their inner pictures or express these in short stories. According to his experience, there is healing power in simply understanding and reflecting the patterns of the patient’s pictures and stories. One of his patients experienced it as follows: “my weakness is transformed into strength”. The transformation process in this case was supported by the remedy Radium bromatum.
WISE process: The term “witnessing” in the sense of “unprejudiced observation” also comes up with Rajan Sankaran in the meaningful acronym WISE. The process of “Witnessing the Inner Song Experience” denotes the process of working primarily not with internal but with certain external pictures which are presented to the patient. The patient’s inner state is revealed in their subjective experience of the pictures and their individual reaction to them. Based on a case using the WISE process, Sankaran also presented his classification of botanical subclasses, recently incorporated into the sensation method. The inner experience of the woman in the WISE process thereby led to the 1st subclass of the Magnoliidae and the order Magnoliales. For the final step to the selection of Nux moschata, keynotes and repertory played an essential role. Andreas Holling has also used the WISE process in his practice. He asks his patients to choose two pictures from a pile of cards that resonate especially positively for them, as well as two with a distinctly negative resonance. His casetaking for Plumbum made clear how the feelings elicited by looking at the pictures can supplement and round off homeopathic casetaking. As with Rajan Sankaran, Holling also picked up on the two core themes of the webinar. Along with the special art of casetaking oriented to deep experience, the five days of the conference were also taken up with the classification of the sensation method. With his dimensions model of the periodic table, Holling has made his own special contribution, which he was able to present to a large audience with his Plumbum case.
Evolution and individuation: Mahesh Gandhi has been working intensively for years on the integration of sensation homeopathy into the classification of the materia medica, orientated to evolution of nature and human individuation. Starting from Jan Scholten’s understanding of the periodic table and Michal Yakir’s outline of the developmental levels of the plant kingdom, Gandhi has devised with his own Personal Evolution Model (PEM) a comparable framework for the animal kingdom. So we now have a consistent system of classification for the remedies of all the natural kingdoms. Using a severe psychiatric case he was able to impressively demonstrate the various developmental stages, which in his model correspond to the age group 0–12 for milk remedies. The remedy Lac ovinum brought about sustained healing in a psychotic girl. Annette Sneevliet, a pupil of Mahesh Gandhi, presented a collection of cases with mineral, plant and animal remedies all corresponding to the same developmental stage of his PEM, the intrauterine or womb stage of Gandhi’s table of the animal kingdom. In all patients it was straightforward to recognise the theme of a cocoon, such as withdrawal to a protective shell, and the polarity of pressure and constriction versus freedom and expansiveness. According to the natural kingdom, remedy selection was restricted to a manageable subset of remedies due to classification in the foetal stage: for the minerals, Beryllium, Boron and Carbon to the second row of the periodic table; for the dicotyledons to the palms and for the monocotyledons to the Hamamelididae in the second botanical subclass; for the invertebrates to the molluscs; and for the vertebrates to the amphibians, which are each assigned to the foetal stage. So the Dutch doctor demonstrated with the example of a stage the practical usefulness of the unified evolutionary classification, and how it can lead to less well-known remedies such as Cocos nucifera, Ficus religiosa or Venus mercenaria. Even if one does not arrive at the sensation level during casetaking, Sneevliet maintains that it is possible to restrict selection to a human developmental stage. A clear vital sensation, however, confers additional certainty on the prescription.
Variety of methods and solution strategies: At the very first WISH congress in Freiburg, Rajan Sankaran emphasised the principle of the synergy of different methods, positioning the sensation in the context of classical homeopathy. His pupil Paresh Vasani once again demonstrated in his closing presentation the synergistic approach with a case of Lac defloratum, pointing especially to the possibilities opened up by modern software. Whereas many colleagues fear that a variety of homeopathic approaches can lead to confusion and arbitrariness, Jayesh Shah regards this as a big chance. “Multiple problems require multiple solution strategies” is his watchword: “Don’t rely on a single method. Don’t hide your remedies in a cupboard, otherwise you’ll lose your life. A materia medica from the cupboard is stiff and frozen. Remedies are very dynamic and have many facets”. Shah described how – particularly with the treatment of corona patients – he had learnt many new aspects of familiar remedies, particularly in the area of physical symptoms. Shah was not the only one to mention the experience of the pandemic during the conference – this came up repeatedly in case histories and in contributions related to personal, philosophical or broader sociopolitical topics in the personal interviews with Jürgen Weiland. The online conference is itself a child and testament to these exceptional times.
WISH congress recordings: If you want to watch the outstanding congress segments, visit https://www.wish4healing.net/onewish.
It only remains to hope that we can once again meet colleagues and friends of the sensation method face to face at the next WISH congress.