New Medical Model
Homeopathy is a therapeutic, holistic method of medical treatment, based upon the exhaustive studies, work and teachings of Dr. Samuel Hahnemann, (1755-1843), and the dynamic principle of “like cures like.”
This is the first, and foundational principle of Homeopathic medicine and is understood to mean that anything which can produce symptoms of disease in a healthy person can have a curative effect on those same symptoms in a sick person.
This idea is not new by any means!
Its origin stems from Hippocrates, (460-370 BC ) who said:
“Through the like, disease is produced, and through the application of the like it is cured.”
Dr. Hahnemann and his Work
Of German descent, Dr. Samuel Hahnemann was a brilliant doctor and chemist who lived at the end of the 18th century. As a doctor trained in the methods of the day, he became frustrated at the barbaric medical practices used on patients at the time. He spent much of his time translating medical texts and it was during this process he noticed that the substance “Peruvian Bark” or “Cinchona,” was listed as causing symptoms such as numbness of extremities, anxiety, intermittent fevers, similar to symptoms of Malaria, which is what they used at the time to cure malaria.
Upon reading this information, Dr. Hahnemann decided to “test” or “prove” Cinchona bark on himself. With strict instructions given to his wife to follow in the process, he proceeded to take small amounts of the bark to see what the results would be. As he surmised, the symptoms of malaria appeared in himself and he became quite sick. Once the experiment was over, and having stopped taking the bark, his health returned to normal. Upon the results of this “test,” or “proving” he determined that if a healthy person, such as himself took Cinchona bark and produced symptoms of Malaria, then perhaps when a sick person, exhibiting the symptoms of malaria, took Cinchona bark, he would become well.
It wasn’t long before he was able to “prove” his hypothesis and through his careful and deliberate study, he began to test other substances to see what symptoms they produced. At every turn in his work, he kept copious notes recording symptoms, physical, emotional and mental.
Because of his exhaustive work experimenting with different substances he eventually came to this foundational statement which forms the basis of Homeopathy:
“Any substance which produces specific toxic symptoms in a healthy person, when given in its full strength form, will cure a sick person with those same symptoms in a very diluted form.”
– Dr. Samuel Hahnemann
Hahnemann based this new system of medicine on certain laws and principles, which make up the foundation of Homeopathy today:
• Law of Similars
• Law of Proving
• Law of Potentization
• Law of the Single Remedy
Dr. Constantine Hering (1800-1880)
Constantine Hering was also a major contributor to the furtherance of Homeopathy in the world. Originally setting out to disprove Homeopathy as an illegitimate method of medicine, he became “converted” when he was treated for a wound that had become inflamed and seriously infected. Homeopathy was used to treat the wound and he became an ardent supporter of the new field of medicine.
He went on to become very influential in the study of Homeopathic methods and remedies and eventually, after moving to the United States became known for making significant contributions to the field. Through his work, the foundational principles of Homeopathy were expanded:
• Healing progresses from within toward without; from the deepest level, (mental and emotional) to external (skin and extremities)
• Healing progresses in reverse order of the original appearance
• Healing progresses from above down; from upper parts of the body to lower parts.
The combined work of Drs. Samuel Hahnemann and Constantine Hering together embody the foundational basis of Classical Homeopathy as we know it today.
Together their work represents the classical approach to the ever expanding study of Homeopathy.
“The power of gentleness is magnificent.”
– Constantine Hering
Father of American Homeopathy
The Popularity of Homeopathy Today
Today, the World Health Organization lists Homeopathy as the second most widely used system of medicine in the world.
Used extensively throughout Europe, Germany and Australia as a widely respected method of treatment, Homeopathy is growing in popularity throughout the United States.
In fact, in the last decade, its growth here in the US has been between 25 and 50% a year. Of particular interest, India has granted Homeopathy equal status to conventional medicine.
In Norway, Homeopathy is the most popular form of medicine and in England, it is known that the Royal Family has been using Homeopathy for over 150 years.
Homeopathy can be used as a comprehensive medical system, (Constitutional care,) as well as for the treatment of specific complaints, (aka. Acute care.) Thus, it can be used as an immediate help or used on a more long-term basis.