What is Homeopathy?
Information on Homeopathy
Homeopathy is an effective and scientific system of healing which assists the natural tendency of the body to heal itself. It recognises that all systems of ill health are expressions of disharmony within the whole person, and it is the patient that needs treatment not the disease.
The Origin of Homeopathy
The word Homeopathy comes from the Greek language, hómoios (similar) and pathos (suffering or disease). In other words “like cures like”. This refers to to the central philosophy of Homeopathy, that a substance that can produce symptoms in a healthy person can cure those symptoms in a person that is ill.
For example, an onion can cause streaming eyes and a runny nose. A Homeopathic remedy; Allium Cepa derived from onions can be successful in alleviating these symptoms in, say, somebody suffering from hay fever.
Dr. Samuel Hahnemann, a German Medical Doctor ( 1755-1843 ) became disillusioned in using the medical practices of the day such as blood letting, drastic purgatives etc. for many complaints that he gave up the practice of Medicine and started translating toxicology books from one language to the other.
While translating the poisonous effects of Peruvian bark or Cinchona ( which Homeopaths today call China) from which Quinine is derived, he realised that its poisonous symptoms were the same as those as a patient with Malaria. The bark of the Peruvian tree was the only treatment for Malaria at the time.
He took small amounts of Peruvian bark himself and got Malaria symptoms. He stopped taking the bark and the symptoms disappeared. When he took the bark again his symptoms reappeared and disappeared again when he discontinued taking the bark and so on.
He called this experiment a “proving”. During the following years he conducted many provings, with different medicines on his family and friends and then postulated a law of drug action suggesting that remedies producing certain symptoms in healthy persons could cure sick persons presenting with similar symptoms.
Source Material on what is homeopathy
Homeopathic remedies (human and veterinary) are made from plant (herb) extract (approximately 50%) animals, and minerals.
Examples of plant remedies are Arnica and Pulsatilla.
Examples of animal remedies are Apis, (made from the honey bee) and Lachesis (made from snake venom).
Examples of mineral remedies are Calcium Carbonate and Sulphur.
On a visit to Australia in 2007, I spent a glorious week in Tasmania and while staying in a hotel in its capital, Hobart, I came upon an article in the Mercury newspaper.
As a homeopath I took a particular interest in the fact that the snake was wrapped around the cat’s neck and that the cats tongue was purple in colour.
In homeopathy, patients who need a snake remedy often have problems with tight clothes around their necks. Even dogs do not like a a collar around their necks.
In addition, the skin often becomes purple in colour. So this cat would have benefitted from a homeopathic remedy made from snake venom, in addition to anti-snake venom. The same newspaper reported a few days later that the cat made an full recovery.
How Are Homeopathic Remedies Made
Lets take for example, Pulsatilla mentioned above. The whole fresh plant is gathered while in flower chopped, pounded to a pulp mixed with alcohol and left in a warm place for seven days.
The juice is then strained, put into a bottle, corked, called and labelled Mother Tincture (MT) .
One drop of the MT is added to 99 drops of alcohol. This mixture is shaken (succussed) 40 times and is labelled 1C ( C=centesimal, i.e. a 1 in 100 dilution. We also use the “x” or D scale to denote a 1 in 10 dilution.)
One drop of the 1C is added to 99 drops of alcohol succussed as above and labelled 2c and so on until the desired potency is required.
How Are Homeopathic Remedies Taken
Homeopathic Remedies are available in many different dosage forms: tablets (soft and hard), pills, granules, powder and liquids. There is no difference in efficacy for the various forms and the choice is usually governed by personal preferences and/or dietary requirements.
- Keep the remedy in its original container.
- Remedies are absorbed from the nerve endings on the mucous membranes of the tongue and buccal cavity (mouth) into the system.
- Place the remedy on the tongue, hold there for approximately three minutes, chew and swallow.
- Whatever form you take, do not eat or drink for approximately 15 minutes before or after the remedy.
- Avoid coffee, camphor, menthol, peppermint, eucalyptus and other strong smelling substances as these can interfere with the action of your remedies.
Storage of Homeopathic Remedies
- Keep homeopathic remedies out of direct sunlight and high temperatures and away from strong-smelling substances such as camphor, perfumes, paint, disinfectants and household chemicals.
- Keep them away from microwave ovens and mobile phones.
- Homeopathic remedies that have been through the Airport scanner, more than twice should be discarded.
- Ideally they should be stored in a cool dark place, but not in a fridge. Storage in a drawer is ideal.