Being a university approved teacher of repertory from 1994 till today, I have witnessed a huge transformation in the subject of repertory, in India. Way back in 1994, when I started teaching the subject, there were no textbooks as such. There were reference books for few to refer to, and the articles in I.C.R Symposium Volumes. There were very few in print and they were difficult to procure. I had to study each repertory with some help from the reference books if available. Fortunately, my teachers guided me a lot whenever I had queries, including how to approach each repertory. We learned and studied repertory as a subject (with various repertories ). Repertory as a subject is taught in the final year of graduation when all the pre clinical and para clinical subjects have been covered by then. So, repertory is an “all” inclusive subject , from case taking -> diagnosing -> analysis of symptoms -> totality formation -> selection of a repertory ( book) ->, forming the “ reportorial totality ” -> conversion of symptom to rubric -> selection of rubrics -> P.D.F ** -> miasmatic cleavage/analysis -> remedy differentiation -> selection of remedy -> selection of potency -> repetition of dose -> auxiliary management of the case -> follow-up -> remedy reaction and remedy relationship.
The late Dr. D. P. Rastogi , my P.G Guide , would often say, “ You should have a Repertory in your right hand , materia medica in the left hand, but Organon in your HEAD and only then can you practice Homoeopathy”.
The Synthetic Repertory (Barthel & Klunker) should be considered as the turning point , after which lots of newer repertories appeared. With 16 sources , and many flaws, Synthetic Repertory is a repertory of Generals . All the later ones have boasted the number of contributors or sources and the expansion of the data.
In 2007, I attended a seminar by a renowned author of a repertory along with my colleagues and seniors. We were taken aback by what happened in the seminar. The speaker started to state some symptoms and a group in the audience (probably the followers ) would shout back the rubrics. This went on for a very long time and it took a while for all of us (lesser mortals ) to realize what was happening in the hall.
Recently I did a C.C.A.H course, where the master would keep taking “n” number of rubrics or “references” from the software. One of his repertory teachers would come up with cures after selecting just one perfect rubric having that one perfect remedy. Today in India, there are many groups or gurus who have their teachings and method of practicing homoeopathy and they all have huge followers. I guess it’s become a fashion to practice homoeopathy by this or that method.
Hahnemann himself was very critical about repertory, as he did not want it to be a mere index. For a teacher like me, who has been teaching about how repertory was elevated from being a mere index, a collection of data or dictionary, to a system, the present situation seems like going back to the beginning of the beginning of repertory.
The student’s / followers hop from one seminar to the next, or may join the other group. There are some students who tell me that they have done courses and have followed all of them and now know everything in homoeopathy.
It is always necessary to update to the current knowledge. It is also important to broaden the scope and horizon of every science and likewise research and updating the data is essential for the development of homoeopathy and repertory.
It is unfortunate to see that homoeopathy is often no longer Hahnemannian. Hahnemann in his Organon of Philosophy strongly condemns “Transcendental Speculations” and has conducted scientific provings of drugs (not relying empirical knowledge). Hahnemann also differentiated “Totality of Symptoms ” from the “Sum Total of Symptoms ”. One cannot practice homoeopathy without following the fundamental laws of homoeopathy. It seems like Hahnemann ‘s teachings have lost their validity in the present trends in teaching of homoeopathy .
Though the data in repertory is growing exponentially day by day, its use is being brought down to the level of a mere index. To each his own, but if a practice is not based on the principles of homoeopathy, should it still be considered Homoeopathy? My teacher, Dr. M. P. Arya would say that no remedy is homoeopathic, if not given on the principles of Homoeopathy.