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Homeopathy 101—What it is and How it Can Help us Heal

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Homeopathy is one of those terms that a lot of us are probably familiar with, but when it comes down to actually using it in a sentence, we might suddenly find ourselves unable to really explain what it means. Basically, homeopathy involves using very very small doses of medicines or remedies to try to help treat and heal a huge variety of symptoms and ailments. Homeopathy is not the same as herbal medicine, although some herbs are definitely used in the remedies. But homeopathy can also use minerals too, or other things from nature like other plants and animals.

According to the National Center for Homeopathy’s website, homeopathy follows an intriguing rule called “The Law of Similars,” that essentially boils down to the idea of “like curing like.” In other words, homeopathic medicine can help an ill person get better if it can cause similar symptoms in a healthy person. In fact, the word homeopathy describes this concept; it is from the Greek words “homeos” meaning “similar” and “pathos” meaning “disease” or “suffering.”

A classic example of this idea, according once again to the website, is that if cutting up an onion makes your eyes water and your nose run, if you had similar symptoms during a common cold or an allergy attack, a homeopathic dose from the red onion or Allium cepa would help your body heal itself.

This whole theory goes way back in time, to around the time of Hippocrates in 400 B.C. Fast forward over two thousand years to the early 1800s, and Samuel Hahnemann, a doctor and chemist from Germany, really got the whole homeopathy thing off of the ground by testing small amounts of medicines on himself. By about 1900, about 20 percent of physicians in the United States were homeopaths, but due to different changes it became pretty unknown until just recently, when it began to gain in popularity again.

One point about homeopathy that I learned while researching this article, and that I personally found to be very interesting is that it does not strive to treat an actual disease, but rather the person who is not well.

Add a Comment4 Comments

My 11 year old dog had arthritis in her back legs. We tried homeopathy with our natural vet and it cleared her right up within a month! There you go, sceptics! And animlas can't pretend that they are feeling better or act like they are not limping!
We found it to be very helpful with a number of ailments with our animals and it's just too bad that my health insurance doesn't cover natural medecine as I really want to use a homepath myself.
Our vet used a very detailed and time consuming method to get to know everything about the dog and then chose a remedy especially for her based on this. It may not work if you just take any old thing without guidance as it's a bit of an art form. But with an expert guiding one, you can get great results.
Imperceptible amounts of sulphur are used, for example and it's the energy of the original medicine which helps with the illness. There are different strengths depending on how you are treating the animal or person.
I would definitely rather try something as gentle and non intrusive if I had a serious illness first than western drugs with their many of side effects and contraindications, but that is just me. Each to his or her own.
But don't knock it 'till you've had some experience with it.

March 28, 2010 - 3:54pm
EmpowHER Guest

The Internet critics of homeopathy have two things in common: first, they have never tried it themselves, and second, their opposition is based on their atheistic, materialistic philosophy and not on the facts.

March 24, 2010 - 4:47pm
EmpowHER Guest

Homeopathy is the second most popular form of medicine. This is an industry making millions of dollars. Homeopathy has never really been properly tested in trials. It is hard to make the argument that it works or does not work with out large scale testing.

March 24, 2010 - 1:10pm
EmpowHER Guest

Homeopathy is utter nonsense. It would take a mere 0.2 second Google search to discover what it really is (hint: nothing).

March 24, 2010 - 7:11am
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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.