Perceiving Rubrics of the Mind (2nd Revised Edition) - Farokh Master
Includes 1182 rubrics. Rubrics are mentioned from A to Z with their meaning and explanations. Cross references are mentioned wherever applicable.
- Author: Master Farokh
- 505 pages
- Printed in India
Reprinted with the permission of the Homeopathic Links magazine, Volume 16, Summer 2003:
Reviewed by Rene Hultier, France:
Dr. Master has several books in print that are available from:
Minimum Price Books online: @ URL:
Most of the titles seem to reveal a clinical perspective on the subject of homeopathy. His publishers provide ample praise for the experiences that he shares with the homeopathic community.
The word 'perceiving' in the title of this book seems to be poorly chosen. To perÂceive is defined as meaning to 'become aware of through the senses. This implies far more than 'understanding'. Had the tiÂtle been slightly different then maybe I would not feel misled. For example, 'perÂceiving the meaning of rubrics of the mind' or more accurately 'understanding the definitions of mind rubrics'.
I had hoped for a work, which would asÂsist in bridging the gap between what is said by the patient in case taking and seÂlecting the appropriate rubric from the mind section of repertories. Maybe this could include discriminating between simÂilar rubrics - comparing subtle differences in meaning. Observing and studying the way in which a patient uses words and structures language. Analysing language structure to find the centre of a case.
I had hoped for a book that was based on case taking which leads toward finding rubrics but this is not what Dr. Master's book is about. This is a book that is about the repertories and the definitions of the words in the rubrics. As such, it therefore merits comparison with other available works of similar intent.
Two such books that I feel are reliable and useful are:
'The Mind Defined' by Laural Part and Rebecca Preston, ISBN No. 1 9011 4700 2 Published by Dynamis Books.
'A Modern Guide and Index to the MenÂtal Rubrics of Kent's Repertory' by David Sauk, ISBN No. 90 8008 451 4 Published by Merlyn
The former of these takes the rubrics from Kent's Repertory and offers the dictionary definitions from Webster's dictionaries pubÂlished in 1847 and 1867. The words choÂsen for definition are classified into four groups, each of which has a clearly identiÂfiable symbol. These four groups are: Rubrics from Kent's Mind Section Sub-Rubrics from Kent's Mind SecÂtion
â€¢ Sub-definitions of obscure words used within a rubric.
Useful words which help our underÂstanding of Repertory [not being parts of rubrics]
There are no cross-references. We are diÂrected to seek modern additions in modÂern repertories by consulting modern dicÂtionaries.
There are a total of 739 definitions.
The second of these is again based upon Kent's Repertory. This is a more ambiÂtious work of a high standard of research. Definitions of words in rubrics are taken from Webster's dictionary published in 1884. Most rubrics have extensive cross-references to selected mind rubrics. Where necessary there are cross-references to reÂlated physical rubrics. Additionally there are many entries of contemporary ideas, which are not rubrics but are modern 'themes'. These entries list appropriate rubrics, which are most similar in meanÂing. There is a total of 1930 terms. Some are contemporary, many are 19th century. Most list large numbers of cross-referÂences.
Dr. Master's book lists 1182 references to rubrics. Each rubric lists the repertory source. These are Kent, Boenninghausen, Synthetic and Vithoulkas. Each rubric is then analysed under several headings. These are:
Meaning - These are taken from dictioÂnaries, which are not identified. Hence they may be original 19Ih century, conÂtemporary or somewhere in between. Cross-references - Identifies similar rubrics.
â€¢ Explanation - This is a heading, which is not present for every rubric. When there are explanations they seem to be Dr. Master's personal interpretation and reflection upon possible causes, or elaborations upon defined meanings. Disease Condition - It is understood that these are 'The names of the imÂportant psychiatric diseases, which have the given rubric as one of their symptoms'. This is seen to be necesÂsary where Dr. Master recommends that 'The homeopath uses all the conÂventional diagnostic investigation and procedures to diagnose the correct mental disorder according to the stanÂdard format given in the 3rd edition of Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorder'.
Important Drugs - Lists the abbreviaÂtions of the Homeopathic remedies which Dr. Master feels to be required when considering each rubric.
In consideration of each of the above headings, the following observations are appropriate in a most general way:
MEANING: Without a cited source of deÂfinitions this is not as helpful as it could be. The practice of taking the references from dictionaries that were contemporary at the time of the compilation of the repertory is more useful. Many of the rubrics are defined correctly, however ocÂcasional ones are bewildering, for example:
286 Darkness aggravates. Meaning - in a state of ignorance.
317 Deserted. Meaning - To forsake or leave.
315 Depression. Meaning - A condition marked by an inability to concentrate, insomnia, and feelings of dejaction and guilt.
327 Development, mental, arrested. Meaning - The act of growing, a product or result of growing.
CROSS-REFERENCES: This is the most helpful category, especially for anyone who is not familiar with repertories.
EXPLANATIONS: Not every rubric is given an explanation as well as a definition of meaning.
Dr. Master seems to have gone to a lot of trouble to use this category to develop his opinions about certain rubrics. Sometimes these are very obvious and specific. For example the rubric: 'Impolite'. Dr. Master gives the meaning as: not polite, discourÂteous, uncivil, rude in manners. The exÂplanation: some people are impolite and do not show respect or courtesy for othÂers. Other times the explanations seem to be quite subjective, often fanciful. For exÂample, the rubric: 'Obscene'. Dr. Master gives the meaning as: offensive to accepted standard of decency. Inciting lustful feelÂing, lewd. The explanation is a person who is impure in language or action e.g. a lady who is immodest in her style of dress and behaviour. With so much human activity that could be used as an adequate examÂple of obscenity this one seems to resonate most particularly with Dr. Master's perÂsonal issues. If this is compared with the reference in the book 'Mind Defined' we find: Offensive to chastity and delicacy, impure, expressing or presenting to the mind or view something, which delicacy, purity and decency forbid to be exposed. Foul, filthy, offensive, disgusting. The latÂter enables us to include the expressions and communications of acts of violence and cruelty and probably much more within the rubric obscene, whilst the forÂmer chooses mini skirts and halter-tops. Occasionally the explanations must be seen as misleading. For example the rubric: Music indifference to. Dr. Master's explanation is: certain people are so sensiÂtive that any form of music increases their complaints or makes them sad, suicidal etc. For example the rubric: 'Paranoia'. Dr. Master's explanation is: Here a person has a delusion and feels that he is a king living in a palace with a crown on his head, though in reality he may be a pauper or a person who is always in fear of being killed or poisoned.
DISEASE CONDITIONS: Almost all of the rubrics include this category. Almost all of the disease conditions referred to are labels, which are taken from the realm of psychiatry and conventional health care.
As such it is questionable whether or not these references are of any use to a classiÂcal homeopath. For example the rubric: 'Depression' has references to the followÂing disease conditions: Endogenous ReacÂtive Schizophrenia Disorder, Organic PsyÂchosis and Schizophrenia. These facts in no way help me to perceive when this rubric is an essential part of the totality of symptoms and modalities which characÂterise the case of any individual patient. General purpose labels are seen to be helpful to determine which group of drugs are to be selected in orthodox allopathic practices.
IMPORTANT DRUGS: For anyone to want to buy this book it would seem likely that they will have a repertory in which case this category is wholly superfluous. It sometimes includes only bold type and italicised remedies. Other times it includes all the remedies in a rubric. It does not distinguish between degrees.
Occasionally the reason for choosing one rubric over another is not clear. For examÂple Dr. Master chooses a rubric: 'Eating ameliorates mental symptoms', and 'Eats more as she should'. But he ignores the rubric - 'Eating, refuses to eat' and its sub-rubrics. With Dr. Master's evident afÂfection for mental health conditions, this omission is surprising.
To summarise: I feel that this book fails to achieve the aims, which its title implies. If it were a book of Philosophies, which can accomÂmodate speculative essays, it would not matter so much. Unfortunately it is a book which seeks to define aspects of lanÂguage which is Homeopafhy's vital tool. It has far too many inaccuracies, approximaÂtions, omissions and errors for it to be in any way reliable. There are other books of similar intent that succeed in this field. Maybe a medical student or practitioner of mental health who is moving toward homeopathy in orthodox practice would find this to be a very useful introduction. For students of Homeopathy to be able to feel confident that this work will be an adequate mapping of the meanings of rubrics, there would need to be extensive revisions. Given more work perhaps in collaboration with someone of analyticlinguistic skills this book could become a more useful work. In terms of comparative costs/value for money, it is certainly unbeatable.
Reprinted with the permission of The Alliance of Registered Homeopaths. From the magazine 'Homeopathy in Practice', Summer 2013 edition:
Reviwed by Kevin Morris:
In the years since I first became interested in homeopathy, there have been many dramatic changes of approach. Whilst probably all have been seen as extremely valuable by at least some practitioners, there is also an undercurrent of concern regarding the potential downside of some of these changes. For, by removing one's focus from Hahnemann's original conception as set down in the Organon, the homeopathic practitioner might be in danger of throwing out the baby with the bathwater.
With such concerns in mind, I have an extremely high regard for Dr Farokh Master. Like almost all Indian homeopaths, his knowledge and understanding of materia medica, homeopathic philosophy and repertory puts many western homeopaths to shame. Unlike some Indian practitioners, though, Dr Master sees no need for sharp changes in direction in terms of philosophy. Although a doctor who specialised in oncology and who is thoroughly knowledgeable about modern developments in medicine and in psychiatry, when it comes to his many homeopathic works, the practitioner can be assured that his approach is still very much in accordance with the approaches of our nineteenth century masters (no pun intended!).
Although Robin Murphy has produced popular repertories that make a radical break from the schema set down by Kent, most repertories commonly in use today still accord with Kent's layout and rubrics. Since Synthesis and the Complete Repertory still use language in common usage in the US in the late nineteenth century, this can sometimes lead to a number of problems since many words have changed in meaning since then.
Important assistance for the student of homeopathy appeared with the publication in 1990 of David Sault's A Modern Guide and Index to the Mental Rubrics of Kent's Repertory a work that I still find myself referring to when searching for an appropriate rubric but, as is clear from the title, Sault limits himself to the rubrics present in Kent. Clearly, more modern repertories have many more rubrics and, of course, there have always been other repertories in use besides Kent. Another important omission in Sault is that although he lists the sub rubrics of the rubric 'desires', he doesn't explain any of them. I was taught that 'Desires to be magnetised' could only safely be defined as 'a desire to be hypnotised', using Mesmer's original term for hypnotism, animal magnetism but, on this issue, Sault isn't much use.
Having seen Dr Master in action I know that, on his laptop, he carries a late nineteenth century edition of Webster's Dictionary's order to be sure of a rubric's nineteenth century definition. He also tells us in Perceiving Rubrics of the Mindthat, when he began studying homeopathy, he resolved to read ten pages each day from Kent. This work is clearly informed by a deep knowledge and understanding of the rubrics, not just of Kent but of many other repertories which he lays before us here.
He presents rubrics and provides definitions of the meaning of each, together with cross-references where appropriate. Going beyond Sault's conception and massively increasing this work's usefulness, he adds important disease conditions that might be implied by the rubric's presence in a patient. Very useful, also, he includes lists of the remedies most commonly called for in that particular rubric. This, however, is not exhaustive; for example the rubric 'Cannot support injustice' has only three remedies: Ign, Nux-vand Staph, whilst my version of the Complete Repertory has 30 remedies. However, knowing that in his practice Dr Master sees many more patients every day than probably any western homeopath could hope to, one is probably safe to assume that the remedies are those most widely encountered in Dr Master's practice,
A small inconvenience exists because Perceiving Rubrics of the Mind has long been in development. Back in 1989 when the first edition appeared, Kent was still the most widely used repertory and Barthel and Klunker's Synthetic Repertory was the new kid on the block. In that edition of this book, repertories by Kent, Boenninghausen, Barthel and Klunker, and Vithoulkas are used. The initials, K, BB, S and V, respectively, elucidate which repertories have a particular rubric. Although I have been unable to find any reference to Phatak's Repertory, I assume that the initial letter P after a rubric refers to that repertory. In the preface to this second edition, Dr Master refers to two repertories that have appeared since original publication: Schroyens' Synthesis and van Zandvoort's Complete. It would seem that the letters, Ss and Z refer to these repertories and that Syn now refers to the Synthetic Repertory of Barthel and Klunker, although I have been unable to find any definite information to confirm that.
In the context of this book's potential daily usefulness, though, this is a small oversight, for I have found this relatively inexpensive book to be a real jewel and one which should not only deepen my knowledge and understanding of repertorial rubrics, but also increase my understanding of the therapeutic uses of our remedies. I was als