HISTORY: Damian V. Popov


„Medical art is similar to love. That is voluntary and cheerful self-sacrifice to a patient.”
“Memory and thought are miracle. Keep them clean – their contamination brings on sufferings.”
Demjan Vladimirovich Popov
Demian V. Popov was born in Haponovka village of Poltava area in Ukraine on 13 November 1899, in the peasant family. He attended Church primary school from where he gained a scholarship to the boarding school in Charkivtsi place and then, college of Commerce in Lochvitsa town. In 1925 he graduated from Odessa Medical institute (it was the first Soviet course in Odessa after Revolution, 1917). His professional life lasted very long – over 61 years. Dr Popov worked as a surgeon for ten years, during World War II as well. He was contused and even taken as a German prisoner.
At the beginning of 1930s Dr Popov started learning homeopathy, which took his interest when he was a student.  First he bought the two books – “Organon” by Hahnemann and “The leading symptoms of our therapeutics” by Nash.  In 1935 he moved to Kiev and arranged his private practice as a homeopath. There was an absolutely unique case in the Soviet Union, where all kinds of private practice were forbidden. Having the excellent experience and reputation, Demian Popov usually consulted 150-200 patients even some came great distances for advice. He helped about a million of people for all his long professional life.
Homeopathy in the USSR, where Dr Popov lived and worked, was half legally. On the one hand anybody neither officially forbidden homeopathy, on the other hand nor supported. There were some legal acts which prohibited the using of the important homeopathic remedies, such as Lachesis, Causticum, Mercurius solubilis in Soviet Medicine Pharmacy. Because of Iron Curtain Demian Popov could not communicate to the European homeopaths. He had no official permission to taught homeopathy and published his articles. But he always became an optimist, was very fond of life and always found some possibilities to pass his knowledge and unique experience to the other doctors. He sometimes visited Moscow, where took part into the meetings of “All Russian Society of Homeopaths” and became its member.

internatDr Popov possessed a peculiar wide world outlook which combined with ability to see details at once. He studied relations between health and disease, soul and body, allopathic approaches and homeopathic methodology. Being an outstanding person he considered medicine as an integrated science and recommended to study its history, applying philosophic categories in practice.
In spite of troubles with a communist ideology and medical bureaucracy Demian Popov left many followers – a new generation of the Ukrainian homeopaths. His theoretical heritage thanks to the efforts of the apprentices was called “Kiev Homeopathic School” later. At the end of his life Dr Popov was decorated with “Order of the Red Banner” by the government and Medal of OMHI by Organization Medical Homeopathic International.
Demian Popov was a very gifted and bright man, and had a wide range of interests. He wrote the short poetries, collected pieces of art and paintings, known literature well, enjoyed music and theatre. Among his friends there were famous artists, painters and the intellectuals.  Nature endowed him with an extraordinary ability to work, perfect memory and beautiful keen mind. In his medical practice he followed to a Latin proverb “Festina lente” (to hurry slowly). At the beginning of his practice he used low potencies of homeopathic solution (3-6D) which he received from a homeopathic pharmacy in Leningrad (now St. Petersburg). Because of lack of professional literature Dr Popov himself proved many remedies.

receptHe believed that homeopathy could cure even some surgical pathology and urgent cases. All his life Demian Popov studied phenomena of the homeopathic aggravation that became a “key” to solving of many homeopathic questions. He sought to diminish a negative effect of aggravation to avoid of a patient’s suffering. At the same time, Dr Popov thought the drug aggravation is the surest method to introduce clarity into Materia Medica overburdened with common symptoms. In his opinion only high solutions of a homeopathic remedy manifest the very specific symptoms, and low solutions bring on unclear drug picture, although we normally can observe the drug aggravation only of high sensitive people. He came to that conclusion on the base of his comprehensive practice and prescription a single remedy (unicism).
Watching high sensitive people we can identify a drug constitution or as we usually say at our School – “image of drug”. Such idea has occurred thanks to Dr Popov’s thoughts about essence of “health” and “disease”. His conclusion was unequivocal – there are no absolutely healthy people. And we should individually estimate a level of their health. Thus, he considered a Hahnemann’s proposition about proving a remedy on healthy people as impracticable one.
Following to Hahnemann’s recommendations, Demian Popov effectively used homeopathy in his practice. Besides, good knowledge of Material Medica, keenness of observation, ability to analytical thinking, medical intuition and careful conduction of medical papers – all of them facilitated to the long successful work. On moving to Kiev he has already been a professional homeopath, convinced at the considerable advantage of his method over the other conservative methods of therapy. Being a brilliant diagnostician and perfect psychologist, and using homeopathic philosophy, he could watch a real person, not separating his psychological features of somatic ones.

medalDemian Popov has never been guided by an allopathic diagnosis only, believing its necessary, but not enough information for finding a similar remedy. His preference he gave neither to mental nor physic symptoms – both of them were equally important for treatment. Dr Popov paid his attention to the most vivid and typical symptoms of a patient.  All his practice was connected with finding potencies, rate, term of treatment, introducing clarity into Materia Medica, he perfected homeopathic prognostication of disease as well. He also believed that high potencies of homeopathic solution have a deeper and reliable effect then low ones, and the prognosis of a disease might be improved. To a considerable degree, existence of homeopathy in Ukraine, especially in Kiev, was supported by Dr Popov personally and his immense prestige. He was highly respected among the colleagues. Even seriously ill patients were sent to him for a consultation by the other homeopaths and also allopathic doctors.
Dr Popov used such a definition like “miasm” exclusively in the meaning of “hereditary pollution” and applied only one term “psora” as a common definition, not separating it in the categories. According to his idea, there were not homeopathic antidotes as well— a remedy was always chosen on a basis of the similar low. A special attention he paid to the modalities which identified the characteristics of a person and the features of a diseased process. Strictly following to Hahnemann’s homeopathy, he has never utterly opposed to any others points of view and supposed that individuality is peculiar not only to a patient, but a doctor as well.

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