Did you know…
that in Heilkunst, homeopathy is just one small part of a much more comprehensive system of healthcare?
What does ‘homeopathy’ mean and stand for as a therapeutic approach? We read about ‘homeopathy’, we use the word, and it is increasingly being used to ‘sell’ things, as it is becoming popular and associated with ‘safe’, ‘effective’ and ‘natural’. But what exactly is ‘homeopathy’, or for that matter, ‘homeopathic’ as in ‘homeopathic medicine’ or ‘homeopathic remedy’?
To fully experience light, we need to have experienced dark. To say ‘yes’ to something, we need to have the option to say ‘no’. Life is polarity and we understand by means of a polarity and choice. To understand ‘homeopathic’, we also need to understand ‘homotonic’. In previous posts, we talked about two types of disease - primary, or tonic disease, which had a constant nature, such as chickenpox or cholera; and secondary, or pathic disease, which has a variable nature. ‘Homeopathy’ involves a specific method for treating the secondary, pathic diseases using the natural curative law of similar; ‘homotonic’ is the method for treating the primary, tonic diseases.
The founder of Heilkunst, Dr. Hahnemann, initially developed a method to treat the tonic diseases based on identifying the cause (‘homotonic’), whether a given trauma (such as an accident or emotional shock), a drug, or a germ. However, once a tonic disease is within a person’s organism, it can give rise to other, secondary diseases. The secondary diseases in many cases will dissolve on their own once the underlying tonic disease is removed according to the tonic disease jurisdictions, as discussed in previous blogs. However, some secondary diseases can only be removed through another method, by looking more closely at the disease expressions and symptoms besides the cause itself. This is where the ‘homeopathic’ prescribing comes in. A secondary disease can be identified and a curative ‘homeopathic’ medicine can be found for it by analyzing the characteristic symptom image that it produces. Each secondary disease creates a unique symptom picture. While one disease may have some symptoms in common with others, the particular combination and sequence (pattern) is unique, like a barcode. We must be aware that it is not a mechanical process but rather an etheric capacity to ‘see’ the disease image expressed through the characteristic symptoms. All clinical health practitioners and physicians would appreciate the importance of cultivating the ability to observe patients. Once you have this symptom picture you can then match it to a ‘rogue’s gallery’ of disease pictures containing the characteristic disease image of each known secondary disease. This ‘rogue’s gallery’ is called the homeopathic materia medica. Most disease pictures are gathered through a method called a “proving”, that is, by giving relatively healthy persons very small, usually highly diluted doses of a given substance (mostly derived from plants, animals, minerals), and recording the characteristic symptoms that are produced (disease image). With the development and spread of homeopathy more and more disease symptoms in the materia medica books are now collected from clinical observations.
Now we can come to the understanding that ‘homeopathy’ means similar suffering: ‘homeo’ = similar; ‘pathic’ = suffering, from the Greek word ‘pathos’. It is in the suffering or symptoms of the patient that we are looking for the curative medicine or remedy with the ‘homeopathic’ method. So, homeopathy is that method of identifying and treating the secondary or pathic diseases according to the law of similars. That’s why its discoverer, Dr. Samuel Hahnemann, took the Greek words ‘homoios’ (similar) and ‘pathos’ (suffering or symptoms) to coin the term. We therefore may use the term ‘homotonic’ for the method that looks at the primary or tonic diseases by means of the causes directly instead of the symptoms/suffering and the remedy is found based on the similar cause/irritants/function.
Treating for the secondary or pathic diseases, is much like detective work. You have the description of a criminal from witnesses and the observation made by the detectives on the scene, and then you try to match this picture of the criminal in terms of his appearance, distinguishing markings, behaviour and M.O. (modus operandi), to a catalogue of known criminals in a police database.
In contrast, the primary or tonic diseases can be identified from their cause. For example, if you are sick or in pain, and this is in some way connected to or following an accident, then you don’t need to focus on the symptoms, but only on the cause – the accident. Take a very simple case – you have a pain and you know that it is there because you were stung by a bee. You don’t need to examine the symptoms; simply give yourself a dose of Apis mellifica, a medicine made from the honey bee, and the pain will be gone. If the pain does persist in some form, it might be because the sting traumatized a nerve ending and in that case you would take the remedy for nerve trauma, which is Hypericum perfoliatum. When a medicine is used to remove a tonic disease, it becomes a homotonic remedy, and when a medicine is used to remove a pathic disease, it is a homeopathic remedy.
Here’s a somewhat more complex example. A woman came to see us suffering from a mysterious rash. Many others had prescribed various drugs, creams, salves and potions – all focusing on the skin symptom itself – but to no avail. In the consultation she mentioned that the rash had appeared shortly after a fearful car accident. She had never had any skin problems prior to the accident. After ascertaining the nature of the shock (essentially emotional), we gave her the remedy for that type of shock and her skin symptoms disappeared within a few days. We could give many more such examples.
Each time when you suffer a tonic disease, this disease can engender one or more secondary or pathic diseases in you. To get at the pathic diseases, you need to examine the symptom picture or image produced and see if you can then find a medicine that produces this same picture in a healthy person. In the case of more than one pathic disease, you have to identify each one according to its characteristic symptom picture and match this disease picture to a medicinal agent that is known to produce a similar disease image in a healthy person. Testing of medicines on healthy persons, using safe, diluted doses is termed a ‘proving’. Once we know what symptoms a given medicine will produce in a healthy person, we can then use that medicine to remove a similar disease in a sick person. We all know that cutting onions produces various characteristic symptoms, like a hay fever condition or certain symptoms of a cold. If you then come down with something such as a cold that produces symptoms similar to that produced by cutting onions, you could take the homeopathic version, Allium cepa, and remove the secondary disease behind the symptoms.
To conclude, homeopathy only treats secondary diseases; it cannot really treat primary diseases. For that you need to use a different method or approach, ‘homotonic’ prescribing. In Heilkunst, we include both the homeopathic and homotonic method and apply each according to the nature or type of disease in a given case.
The term ‘homeopathic’ is also often used for various ‘natural’ formulas that contain herbs, vitamins, and other ingredients in a highly diluted form. But neither the ‘natural’ aspect, nor the dilution makes something ‘homeopathic’. It is only homeopathic when it is applied to a secondary or pathic disease according to the law of similars (in this case similar suffering or symptoms = pathos), which involves a substance that has been proved or tested in its effects on healthy persons (‘provers’) and these negative effects (only temporary in the provers) are then matched to a similar disease picture in a sick person.
Thus, Heilkunst includes homeopathy, but goes far beyond simply homeopathic treatment, as this only is able to treat secondary, pathic diseases, not the deeper primary or tonic diseases.
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