The History of Homeopathy
Homeopathy was founded in the 18th century , a German physician. The word homeopathy was created from the word “homois” which means “similar” and “pathos” which means “suffering”. He sought to find a way to reduce the side effects of the medical treatments of that time and to find a gentle and permanent cure as he was concerned about the wellbeing of his family. The principal of like cures like goes back to historic greats such as Paracelcus and Hippocrates who was the father of modern medicine.
In the year 1790 AD, Hahnemann’s life would change when he discovered an approach to treat disease called Homeopathy. Hahnemann at the time was in the midst of translating Dr.William Cullen’s “A Treatise on Materia Medica” from English to German. Dr.Cullen was a professor of medicine at London University. In his book there were a number of pages written on the curative effects of the Peruvian Bark (Cinchona Bark) for intermittent fever. Hahnemann was unhappy with Cullen’s explanation of this and wanted to experiment on it himself. He took 4 drams of Cinchona bark extract twice a day and developed malarial fever symptoms.
Hahnemann’s experimenting on himself began a new trend of human drug testing referred to as drug proving. The curious and inquisitive mind of Hahnemann desired to repeat the experiment before coming to a conclusion about its curative effects so he decided to repeat the experiment on his friends and volunteers. As he expected, all of them had the same malaria like fever. In the year of 1792 AD, Hahnemann accepted the offer of the reigning Duke Ernst of Gotha, as the Head of an asylum at Goergenthal. Here he cured with homeopathy a Hanoverian Minister named Klockenbring who was diagnosed as insane and incurable.
Hahnemann experimented with other medicinal substances and to his surprise, all of them were capable of producing the same diseased state in healthy humans for which they were used for specific medicines. Thus, Hahnemann, after extensive research and testing, came to the conclusion that medicines can cure diseases because they can produce similar symptoms in healthy individuals and went on to heal and help many sick people.
Homeopathic Medicine – Remedies
All Homeopathic remedies come from substances within our environment. They are derived from either the mineral, plant or animal kingdoms and are scientifically prepared in order to remove the toxicity of the substance. Once the toxicity is removed, it releases the curative information provided within the substance’s foundation. The curative information is referred to as the vital force of the substance. The bulk of remedies in everyday use are derived from plants. In fact, homeopaths took over the pharmacopoeia of the herbalist in many countries and cultures, although homeopathic medicines do not resemble herbal medicines in any way.
The Homeopathic Consultant and Your Consultation
Homeopaths are now regulated in Ontario.
Case taking is an essential diagnostic tool used in Homeopathy. Through this case taking process the Homeopath is a good listener and observer and gives the patient freedom to express his or her symptoms with occasional questions to extract further relevant or important information. Questions may be based on mental, emotional or physical states as all may be of critical importance for homeopathic assessment. This process is extremely valuable to the Homeopath as prescribing a remedy is based on the unique symptoms as opposed to the common symptoms of illness.
The case taking process can take anywhere between 20 minutes to 2 hours dependent on a variety of factors such as whether it’s your first visit with the Homeopath or whether your complaint is acute or chronic in nature. In the initial consultation, your medical history and family history will also be noted and a physical examination may be applicable.
It is found that during the case taking process, especially in chronic disease casetaking, a powerful relationship can develop between the patient and the homeopath and at times, much healing takes place within the context of this process.
How Homeopathy Heals
The human body is highly intelligent and has an inner regulatory system that maintains homeostasis. Homeostasis is Greek for “same” and “steady” and means the body is functioning within its normal parameters. If the body’s functions fall outside of normal it can lead to disease.
All organisms have what is called a vital force which is a mechanism that assists in regulating the survival functions of all organisms. The human body is a wonderfully intelligent and complex system that has the ability to heal itself and knows when to administer your hormones in perfect amounts, when to send out antibodies and white blood cells to heal and protect the organism and again, does all of this to perfection. These are a very limited number of responsibilities and tasks that the body performs on a daily basis to keep it functioning and keep us alive however, at times, it requires some assistance in maintaining its great balancing act and when this happens, that’s when we observe signs and symptoms of disease. Symptoms are the body’s language of advising us that it requires assistance. Symptoms express to us the disturbed patterns and homeopathic medicines address these disturbed patterns.
Homeopathy stimulates the inner curative force that maintains homeostasis by treating it with medicines that work on the basis of like cures like. This therapeutic law maintains that substances that have the ability to produce distinct symptoms when taken in recurrent doses by a healthy person are also capable of treating a similar set of symptoms in an ill person. The law of similars goes way back into ancient times as great scholars such as Hippocrates, Paracelus and Ayurvedic texts had advocated for the like cures like treatment philosophy long ago.
Dana Ullman, a homeopath, reminds us that Immunizations and allergy treatments are two treatments in modern medicine that stimulates the body’s own defenses to prevent and treat specific diseases. He reminds us that it is not simply a coincidence that both of these treatments are derived from the homeopathic principles of similar.