What is Homoeopathy?
Homoeopathy is a system of medicine which involves treating the individual with highly diluted substances, given mainly in tablet form, with the aim of triggering the body’s natural system of healing. Based on their specific symptoms and similarity, a homeopath will match the most appropriate medicine to each patient.
The term “Homoeopathy” was coined by a German Doctor, Dr. Samuel Hahnemann and first appeared in print in 1805. Hahnemann conceived the idea of Homoeopathy while translating a medical treatise by the Scottish physician and chemist William Cullen into German. Being skeptical of Cullen’s theory concerning cinchona’s use for curing malaria, Hahnemann ingested some of the bark specifically to investigate what would happen. He experienced fever, shivering and joint pain: symptoms similar to those of malaria itself. From this, Hahnemann came to believe that all effective drugs produce symptoms in healthy individuals similar to those of the diseases that they treat, in accord with the “law of similars” that had been proposed by ancient physicians. This led to the term Homoeopathy where “Homoeo means same” and “pathos means suffering.”
Dr. Hahnemann educated the world about “Vital Force or Energy.” He said that there is something unseen that is behind everything that is alive. He called this thing as Vital Force or Vital Energy. When a healthy man’s vital force gets deranged due to any cause, a “disease” is set in that man. Homoeopathy corrects this deranged vital energy and makes the sick a healthy being once again. The basic laws and principles of Homoeopathy are:-
- Similia Similibus Curanteur (Law of Similars)
- Law of Simplex
- Law of Minimum Dose
- Doctrine of Drug Proving
- Theory of Chronic Diseases
- Theory of Vital Force
- Law of Drug Dynamization
Homoeopathic medicines are prepared by specialist pharmacies using a careful process of dilution and succussion (a specific form of vigorous shaking). As yet, science has not been able to explain the mechanism of action of ultra high dilutions in the body, but laboratory experiments have repeatedly demonstrated that Homoeopathically prepared substances cause biological effects. For example, the hormone thyroxine prepared as a Homoeopathic ‘30C’ dilution can slow down the process of metamorphosis of tadpoles into frogs. One theory is that during the production of a Homoeopathic medicine, the dilution and agitation processes cause an interaction between the original materials (e.g. a plant such as Belladonna) and the water and alcohol it is mixed with. This creates tiny new structures (nanostructures) which are the ‘active ingredient’ and remain present even when the sample has been diluted many, many times.