In my practice, I am often asked about homeopathy. The most common question being, "What is homeopathy?" and occasionally this is followed with "Does it actually work?". My experience over the years has shown me why this form of medicine has managed to remain such a mystery. The art of selecting the best remedy and dosage can often be elusive to us if the process isn't respectfully carried out. However, when done correctly, a gentle healing will occur that is nearly miraculous in its action.
Homeopathy is a form of medicine commonly used in holistic practice today. It is well known for its ability to provide effective, yet gentle relief of symptoms, whether they be of an acute, or chronic nature. It is an energetic medicine that works on the body’s own vibrational frequency to bring about healing. The human body can be freed from disruption and disease by removing blockages and misplaced energies in the subtle bodies, also known as the auric field. Homeopathy assists in this way by changing the frequency of the electromagnetic waves in the auric field.
The word homeopathy is a blend of two Greek words, Homeios, meaning ‘similar’ or ‘like’, and Pathos, meaning ‘suffering’. It was coined using these words because the homeopathic remedy administered to an ill person consists of a substance that produces similar symptoms in a healthy person when given in its original, crude form.
The remedy itself is highly diluted to the point of containing very little to none of the actual particles of the original substance, and acts on frequency alone.
In the early 19th century, a German physician named Samuel Hahnemann developed an effective form of potentizing remedies through the process of dilution and succussion. Dr. Hahnemann is considered the father of homeopathy. For one of his first known remedies, he discovered that Peruvian Bark, Cinchona officinalis, often used to treat malaria, would create similar symptoms to malaria if the plant was given in high doses to a healthy person. This was the moment in his career when he realized the power of using "similar" substances to bring about healing. The key was to extract and develop the healing properties from the substance into a safe and gentle form of medicine, which is why he used dilution and succussion. In addition to seeing patients and educating his colleagues in this new found way of practice, Dr. Hahnemann wrote several books. His first book was Organon of the Healing Art, in 1810, where he expanded on his three principles of homeopathy and he also authored the Materia Medica Pura as a compilation of his proven remedies. Homeopaths still study these texts in practice today.
The first principle of homeopathy is known as the Law of Similars. Also labeled as the Similimum, or Similia Similibus Curentur, meaning, Like Cures Like. A substance which can produce a totality of symptoms in a healthy human being can cure that totality of symptoms in a sick human being. When treating with homeopathy, the intended goal is to bring about an artificial disease through similar, yet stronger symptoms. Between the two diseases, the original (natural) and the artificial (homeopathic), only one can exist. The artificial, being the stronger of the two, essentially overrides the natural symptoms, thus bringing about healing and return to health.
Homeopathic ‘proving’ is the process of testing a substance to determine its potential as a remedy. It is an investigation of the disease-making power of medicines, to single out one medicine from whose set of symptoms as artificial disease can be composed as similar as possible to the totality of main symptoms of the natural disease that is to be cured. The person carrying out the proving must be healthy in both body and mind so as not to cloud the symptoms. Many homeopaths and student homeopaths still carry out controlled provings today as a way to determine new and undiscovered remedies.
Homeopathy is about reaching cure through gentle means and is done so with the second principle of homeopathy, the Infinitesimal Dose. It is so small and tiny that the higher potencies no longer possess a single molecule originating from the mother tincture, yet they maintain their therapeutic benefits due to the process of dilution and succussion. Many remedies are derived from poisonous substances. Dilution alone weakens the substance by reducing the toxicity of the agent, while proportionately reducing the therapeutic effect as well. Succussion, a specific form of forceful shaking, adds kinetic energy to the remedy following dilution, and maintains the medicinal effects, while removing any residual toxicity. The more the substance is succussed and diluted, the greater the therapeutic effect on the body’s energetic field. All potencies higher than decimal potency 24x and centesimal potency 12c exceed Avogadro’s Number and contain zero molecules of substance from the original mother tincture.
The third principle is understanding the Totality of Symptoms in a person and why this is significant to their health. Homeopathy is a multi-dimensional approach to medicine in that it evaluates all of the individual, such as their habits, behaviors, emotions, likes/dislikes, spirituality, character, and physical constitution, along with the symptoms they are experiencing. Holistic medicine and homeopathy emphasize treating the whole person, rather than reviewing only the symptoms.
A fair amount of healing takes place not only on the physical plane, but also within the invisible force that is responsible for animating the human body. Known as the ‘vital force or life force’, this influence directs all aspects of life. It adapts to environmental influences, it animates the emotional life of the individual, it provides thoughts and creativity, and it conducts spiritual inspiration. The vital force is subject to change when a person becomes sick or encounters a situation that affects them in a negative way energetically. There becomes a disruption in the frequency waves of the vital force which can lead to a state of disease.
Classical homeopathy is the original form developed by Dr. Hahnemann and uses the homeopathic preparations of plants, animals, and minerals. Single remedies are preferred over multiple combinations. Combination prescribing is not that unusual in today's modern times however. This is the practice of prescribing multiple remedies in one formula with the idea that the body will only take which frequencies it requires. These formulas utilize any combination of classical remedies, nosodes, and sarcodes.
A nosode is the homeopathic preparation of an actual pathogenic organism and can be made from any virus, bacteria, fungus, or parasite. No trace of the organism in crude form exists in the remedy as the medicine employs the energy of the pathogen to make an exchange with the body to remove symptoms. Sarcodes are the homeopathic preparations of various tissues and chemical secretions within the body. Hormones, amino acids, neurotransmitters, enzymes, vitamins/minerals, etc. can all be found in combination formulas.
Some practitioners may incorporate a miasm remedy, which addresses an underlying, inherited or acquired energy blockage fitting a specific pattern. This is a practice that dates back to the time of Hahnemann and can be further studied in some of his original texts.
We are now seeing a resurgence in home use of homeopathy by parents and caregivers and though it requires some study to initially grasp and understand, homeopathy is not just for practitioners. Keeping a remedy kit at home to assist with acute infections and ailments is one of the best ways to learn how homeopathy can benefit you and your family. I strive for all of my clients to learn about homeopathy's gentle effectiveness at healing and how empowering it can be to use once you’ve developed a relationship with its process.
I've added some tips below to follow if you are finding that your homeopathic remedy hasn't worked as it should.
The remedy chosen wasn’t the correct match for you.
The remedy wasn’t administered correctly.
Homeopathy is frequency based and highly sensitive to other, stronger frequencies such as essential oils (like peppermint), onions, garlic, and coffee. Camphor, as in Vick’s, will antidote a remedy. Avoid intense heat as well and don’t keep your remedies in a hot car. Remedies dosed in liquid should be given in spring water, not tap, as there are too many chemicals and distilled water cannot carry the frequency adequately. Do not use metal bottles or spoons for dosing, though plastic and glass are fine. Always give homeopathic remedies 30 minutes away from food and drinks other than water.
If you wish to learn more about the art of homeopathy and how it can benefit you and your loved ones, I've compiled a list of some of my favorites books as recommended reading.
The Practical Handbook of Homeopathy – The How, When, Why, and Which of Home Prescribing, by Colin Griffith
The Complete Homeopathy Handbook: Safe and Effective Ways to Treat Fevers, Coughs, Colds and Sore Throats, Childhood Ailments, Food Poisoning, Flu, and a Wide Range of Everyday Complaints, by Miranda Castro
The Handbook of Homeopathy: Its Principles and Practice, by Gerhard Koehler
Homeopathic Medicine at Home: Natural Remedies for Everyday Ailments and Minor Injuries, by Maesimund Banning Panos, MD and Jane Heimlich
Homeopathic Clinical Repertory, by Robin Murphy, ND
Nature’s Materia Medica, by Robin Murphy, ND
The Alchemist’s Handbook to Homeopathy, by Rev. Mary Hardy, PhD, ND
“The highest ideal of cure is the speedy, gentle, and enduring restoration of health by the most trustworthy and least harmful way.” ~Dr. Samuel Hahnemann