JOHN URI LLOYD, PHAR.M., CINCINNATI, OHIO.
Mr. President, Members of the Society, Ladies and Gentlemen:
I find my name on the program for an address. I do not know just why I am permitted to speak to you, unless it is by reason of the fact that I am old enough to talk to most of the members in this room as one who would speak perhaps for the last time, for when a man comes towards seventy (sixty-six), it may be the last time (Lloyd lived until 1936—MM), and I say to you young people that the time will come when you will comprehend that and feel as I feel now—you can not avoid it. Our young friend, Dr. Mundy, said yesterday to me, "Professor, I almost feel now when I go to a society meeting as though I am getting into the older class." You move into it, you become a part of it, and you look back and reflect over opportunities lost in times gone by, mistakes made in times gone by, and hope always comes when we reflect over these lost opportunities and these mistakes made—hope always comes that those who follow us will not make the same mistakes and will have greater opportunities.
I am sure when I take this for my text to-day—for I have no text other than what comes—somewhat like the wind. Whence does the wind come, and where does it go? So it is with thought; whence does thought come and where does it go? Let me tell you that, in my opinion, thought comes through the experiences of the past, which is the text I stand upon, and giving thought an opportunity to wander, where does it go ? It goes where the words are spoken and the lines that are written in connection with the thought, makes the impression on those who listen and those who read. When we come to a point like I am now, the question is, What will be the effect on those who are here? So what I propose to say to-day, and I will make it brief as possible and as direct as possible, is along this line.
We are members of the Eclectic school of medicine, and we should not forget that fact; and we should not forget in thinking of that that the Eclectic school had a mission to perform and that it is still, as the address of our president called to our attention, it is still a living thing, and that those who are to follow still have a mission to perform, and I think added opportunities will come to them by reason of the work that we have done, on the foundation on which they will stand, by the efforts we have made and the sacrifices we have made in behalf of the work that they are to do. Look ahead, look ahead! Longfellow said, "In thy journey look not backward." Let me say that it is standing on that which is backward now which gave us an opportunity to look forward, and we who are passing out comprehend fully the opportunity that you have who are coming in. Listen! Forty years ago, fifty years ago, fifty-two years ago, I first came into touch with the Eclectic school of medicine. They were held up to me as being irregular. Irregular in what, I ask you? Irregular in what? I watched this as I came into contact with the different schools of medicine. As I came into contact with Dr. John King, and later, with Dr. Scudder, and later still, with Dr. Locke, and then with Daniel Vaughn, the eminent scientist of Cincinnati, a leader in our school, when I remember James R. Buchanan, the eminent thinker who is being followed by those who think they are in the first rank to-day of thinking in this line, as I call one after the other of these old Eclectics to mind and think what they have done, I ask the question, Irregular in what? I will tell you. Irregular in that they were willing to sacrifice for the benefit of humanity. They were thus irregular. (Applause.) Irregular because of the fact that they were willing to go into a minority school of medicine where they would have liberty to think outside of the beaten path where the road was laid down. Irregular in that they sacrificed personal opportunities that came and always come to those who are in the majority, sacrificing that in behalf of principle. One of the thoughts, and I think you will excuse me for saying this, one of the thoughts that I fight and one of the thoughts that I try to keep myself from falling into constantly, is that of separating the individual from the cause, is that of endeavoring not to judge the work of a man by the personality of the man, endeavoring to overlook the wrongs of the individual whom I know has certain wrongs, in behalf of the greater good the individual accomplishes in behalf of the cause. In other words, separating the individual from the cause. That is where so many of us fall down. If a man is in a position where he is doing a work and we see something about that man we do not admire, we are apt to forget the work he is doing and make conspicuous the fault, forgetting that the faults we have come to that man and he forgets the work we are doing and looks upon the faults. Overlook the idiosyncrasies of humanity as you go along, And remember that the weaknesses of humanity are common alike to each.
And so when some man picks out for you a fault of some man who belonged to the early Eclectic school of medicine, but who did his work well in those days in behalf of the cause, when he finds some little thing and forgets all that the man has accomplished by reason of the fact that the microscope shows up this little fault, do you remember what the man has accomplished ?
I have never known a man that I could learn to hate, because it seems that the man I might want to hate had done so much good that on thinking, the hatred disappears and dissolves as snow before a summer sun. (Applause.) There is no such thing as human hatred if you will think that all alike are serving the best they can in this world, where we are all a part of the humanity of it all. I have sometimes been in a position where I had a rocky road to travel in pharmacy. No one knows what I have had to go through in pharmacy and in medicine as well—a rocky road—and sometimes I have been pestered almost to distraction, and when that time came and the individuality of the person who was antagonistic has risen up, do you know how I softened myself? Listen! I will tell you the scene that comes to me then, and after I put myself in that position, there is no longer antagonism. I think of the day when one or the other of us will lie still. That picture comes—and I have done this many, many years—that man dead before me, and I say to myself, "What will you say about that man now? What will you think of that man now?" Put yourself in that place and then do not say anything about him when he is living that you would not say about him were he dead. Can you hate a dead man? No. Then, my friends, when these little things come before us that concern the individuality of the man as we go along in this work, let us forget them in behalf of the great cause in which we are engaged.
The opportunities of the future for the Eclectic that is to come overshadow the opportunities of those who have, up to this time, been in our school. Do you think I say this without reason ? I want to say to you that if the Eclectic school of medicine should, as a people, come to that conclusion, the Eclectic school of medicine will lose the opportunity given to it by the fathers of Eclecticism. Wanderers are these other sects—may I impress that—wanderers are these other sects. The Eclectic school of medicine is not sectarian. That has been thrown at me from the time I began the work with Robert Bratton and E. E. Stevens, at Miami College—that you have gone into a sectarian work. But I have thrown it back with arguments that have never been refuted, "No, I left the sect because I would not be circumscribed by rules and laws laid down by a few men, and went into a school of medicine that is not sectarian." (Applause.) I can not understand how my friends in the other school of medicine will not teach the members of the other schools of medicine that the Eclectic school is the only non-sectarian school in medicine, the only one that is not restricted and is not compelled, by the records of the past and the methods of the present, to follow a line of teaching outside of which they dare not go without being irregular. (Applause.) You may be able to explain it. I have not as yet, but yet I make no complaint; none whatever. Why? As I have just told you, we must not look at individual faults. We are in the minority, and, of course, the majority say the minority are sectarian. It is natural that those in a great party should speak of the minority as being a sectarian part of the work in which we are all concerned.
Now, what is the duty of the Eclectic of the future? How many times have I seen the official medication of the sectarian majority come and go, and with the disappearance of each of the regular methods and regular lines of medication, I have said to myself, "When the next fad will come in, this, too, shall pass away—this, too, shall pass away—as it always has done." Can you call to mind the successive coming in and going out of that which is regular in medicine? I repeat that when I came into pharmacy there was no regularity—and I say this with all kindness and with the best motives—the medication was a system as they believed, a scientific system, and look you, the word "scientific" has always capped the system of their medication. The word "scientific" has been held before the people as though it were something that belonged to one school of medicine, and that term scientific has been held before them in contradistinction to the word "empiricism," which they attempted to throw as a slur on other schools of medicine, and, if there is any school of medicine that is empirical at the present time, absolutely empirical, trusting to experimentations not on the human body, but on animals, noting that which comes from experimentations they make on animals, it is the regular school—the majority.
Now what were the circumstances fifty years ago when I came into pharmacy? I filled prescriptions for all schools of medicine. See these two fingers? I imagine myself reaching a thumb and finger into a jar of blue mass, one-third mercury, and taking out some little pellets and rolling them between my fingers and dropping them on the scale pan, balanced on the other side by a ten-grain weight, and I was so expert that it was seldom that the pills had to be taken up again to be reweighed. That was the custom—ten grains of blue mass on going to bed; two compound cathartic pills in the morning or an ounce of castor oil—for the beginning of nearly every case that came to the druggist. The first step in regular medication. Then came the tartar emetic plaster. I would give any amount of money for the old plaster iron I used to spread blister plasters, and when the doctor could give me the position that plaster was to occupy, behind the ear, three inches by two, or wherever it might be, I could cut it to fit the part. And then the croton oil that was used. It was the custom to be regular in that way. It was a bad habit, and they have gotten themselves out of it and it is gone. Then they came through the quinine period—everything was quinine—and if a man did not seem to need quinine, the doctor would take a microscope to find it. But they have left all this, and I can remember when Dr. John Scudder commenced to give calomel in one-tenth grain doses. How they laughed at him! He said it was better than the larger amount, and now the authority, as I understand, is one-tenth of a grain of calomel every half hour. But each of these left a sliver of something useful and, in my opinion, the present fad—I will not mention it—will leave something useful. In my opinion, the getting together of this great mass of money to be used for the purpose of establishing these fads will but hasten the day when these fads will be wiped out by a people that will rise up as we of the olden time rose up to crush the fads that I have brought before you. Give mercury to salivation! Did you ever see a person salivated? Show me the doctor that bleeds to-day; show me a doctor that used a plaster iron to spread the blister plaster. They are all gone. And yet I will not say that, sometimes, these methods may be useful.
The work of the Eclectic is to be a teacher; the work of the Eclectic has been that of a teacher. Can you comprehend it? A teacher against regularity? The work of the school has been that of offering something kind to take the place of something cruel, to use nature's remedies, to study nature, to be true to the cause in which we are engaged, and in the work of the coming school, you must tread that line, unless the whole cause of medicine becomes Eclectic. Can you comprehend it? Take a barrel of sweet water, put into it one grain of yeast. It is lost, you think it is gone. But wait; begins the agitation, begins the turmoil, the confusion, continuous changes are taking place in that entire barrel of sweet water and within a time, it all is in a turmoil, until finally it becomes quiet again. So the seeds we are planting put into this great vat of American medicine are making themselves felt; the seeds are taking root. You have them ask you questions now, and increasingly as this present fad sweeps over this country, functioned by immense quantities of money, increasingly you will find these questions asked. I am in a position to comprehend, my young friends, that more than ever, the physicians are being liberated from the sectarianism that has prevailed in the times gone by.
In this cause you have a great opportunity for education, and I hope, my friends, that you will not forget that education and schooling are very different. A man may have much schooling and very little useful education. A boy may be put into a school and go through high schools and universities and come back and not be able to help a single human being, not be able to make his own living. So when you see this great amount of money spent in the name of education, put in the place of the word "schooling." I would rather have a doctor treat one of my family who had been educated in the study of disease and medicine, than a doctor who has been raised to the skies and the study of astronomy. (Applause.) It matters little to me whether he spells socks "sox" or not, or whether he comprehends what a pair of socks may be; it does not matter. Some people think that the education of a young man depends upon the schooling he has in an artificial direction. I can think of one man in Ohio to-day, who can spell but little better than I can, and I can not spell at all. If you would ask me to spell welcome, I would not know whether it has two "l's" or one, and if some university student wants to criticize me because of that, I say, "I can put a good many things that you can not reach where they should be." And so it is as we go through life. Remember, education comes from all directions. The world is a great university; there has never been completed a greater thing than the world. I have met many men talented in these other educational lines, but I have never listened to one who could teach me, who could help me as I need help, better than this physician in the little town, in Ohio.
Then let us each feel that we have a part to fill, a work to do, and the great cause of Eclecticism is to continue in the study of the preparation of plants. I have largely excluded all else from my line of work. I have come to comprehend that all life action comes from vegetation, which I could not comprehend without the knowledge that was given to me by these men of the olden times. Whatever is in life, comes from the plant; whatever acts on life beneficially, comes from the plant. And now listen—you believed me when I taught you years ago and used a blackboard—let me tell you that all life structures that I know of, that all life foods that I know of, are colloidal, and colloidal chemistry is the chemistry in which we stop studying the molecules and study the action of structure on structure. We are walking colloids ourselves, every tissue of the body is colloidal, every food that we take is colloidal, and behind it all rests water—water, the material that, in the time to come, will be studied by the chemists and pathologists as the great source of functional activity in human plant being.
Mr. President, I thank you for this opportunity to make this wandering address. Many of the sentences I have used I could dwell on for hours, but the points I have mentioned have been cut because we have not the time. But I hope you will remember that you have a work to do. Remember, do not criticize the other man if you have not done anything yourself. Do not criticize the man who has done much because he has made some mistake in your opinion. Think kindly of the other man, try to find, wherever you go, an opportunity to say something pleasant, to find something good in whatever locality you may be—and you will find it. I have traveled the world over and I have never found a place that there was not something to learn, something good to say, and I have never come into contact with a human being I could hate, because the faults that I might stir myself to believe about that man, if I would allow myself to dwell upon them, disappear.
I will close with this, "Unto him that hath shall be given." Cut out the money side of this, forget what the preachers tell you—if you think good thoughts—unto you that hath shall be given. If you have had thoughts, unto you shall be given. If you do wrong, other wrong comes, and if you do good, greater good comes. "Unto him that hath shall be given." Try to think good will to all, peace on earth, good will to men. (Applause.)
National Eclectic Medical Association Quarterly, Vol. 7, 1915-16, was edited by William Nelson Mundy, M.D.