Beaucoup de gens m’écrivent et me demandent, “Quel est le problème avec l’Homéopathie ? Un Chrétien peut-il en prendre ? Est-elle en relation avec le new age et l’ésotérisme ? » etc. Je dois dire que je n’ai pas étudié le sujet de façon approfondie. Mais j’en ai vu les effets négatifs sur les Chrétiens et leur vie spirituelle. Beaucoup qui ont des problèmes dans leur vie de prière comme le manque de concentration, les distractions, les sentiments de fatigue, les bâillements durant la prière, les douleurs sur tout le corps pendant les prières et surtout quand ils appellent le Nom de Jésus, de mauvaises idées et surtout immorales pendant la méditation chrétienne etc- ont admis qu’ils étaient sous traitement homéopathique, et quand je leur ai demandé d’arrêter leur homéopathie, ils furent alors capables de bien prier. Récemment un homme est venu et m’a dit qu’il n’e pouvait pas prier en langues alors qu’il était dans le Renouveau Charismatique et dans un groupe de prières depuis très longtemps. Il prenait des médicaments homéopathiques pour l’insomnie. Quand je lui ai demandé d’arrêter ses médicaments et de prendre des médicaments normaux allopathiques, il put retrouver le sommeil et fut capable de prier en langues. Une sœur religieuse en Slovénie m’a dit que le médecin qui lui prescrivait des médicaments homéopathiques pour le traitement de son cancer, lui avait demandé d’arrêter de prendre la Sainte Communion pour un meilleur effet de ses médicaments. Beaucoup de personnes en Allemagne, Autriche et France m’ont dit que les médecins Homéopathes, pendant qu’ils prescrivent leurs médicaments, leur conseillent de ne pas faire le signe de croix ou d’appeler le Nom de Jésus avant de prendre leurs médicaments homéopathiques car les chrétiens font tout avec un signe de Croix ou une petite prière. Pourquoi faire une exception pour l’homéopathie ? Peut-être parce que le signe de Croix ou le Nom de Jésus peuvent bombarder le pouvoir ou l’énergie des médicaments Homéopathiques ! J’ai un témoignage à vous faire partager.
Il y a 13 ans, un médecin Homéopathe catholique m’a demandé de bénir sa clinique Homéopathique. Avec joie je suis allé à sa clinique et je l’ai bénie avec les prières habituelles selon le rite de l’Eglise Catholique Romaine et j’ai aspergé de l’eau bénite partout où il me le demandait. Après quelques jours il vint et me dit : « Père James, après que vous avez béni et aspergé d’eau bénite ma clinique et mes médicaments, j’ai dû jeter tous les médicaments car ils avaient perdu leur « potency » (puissance) ». Grâce à Dieu il n’a pas menacé de me poursuivre ! Puis j’ai demandé à ce docteur la raison pour laquelle ses médicaments ont perdu leur puissance alors que j’ai prié avec la puissance de l’Esprit Saint. Il a dû admettre que le pouvoir de ces médicaments était en opposition avec le pouvoir de l’Esprit Saint. Alors il me demanda d’examiner les bouteilles de médicaments allopathiques où le détail du contenu est précisément formulé comme Hydrate de carbone 15%, Magnésium 20%, Alcool 5%, Eau 10% etc, alors que de telles précisions quant au contenu sur les bouteilles ou tubes de médicaments homéopathiques ne sont pas retrouvées, au lieu de cela l’efficacité du médicament est précisée sous forme de « potencies » « dilution et dynamisation », désignées par CH … etc Le Docteur lui-même admit qu’il ignorait l’origine du pouvoir de cette « dilution et dynamisation ». Il me dit que l’effet principal de l’Homéopathie est un effet placebo. Il est clair que cette puissance est un pouvoir caché (pouvoir occulte). Je ne veux faire aucun jugement sur l’Homéopathie car je n’en suis pas un expert, mais il y a une chose que je veux dire à mes frères chrétiens c’est que ce n’est pas bon pour un chrétien de les utiliser quel que soit le bon effet qu’ils peuvent apporter sur les gens malades. Beaucoup de traitements ésotériques et de new age (médecines alternatives) font de la publicité en disant « c’est bon marché et il n’y a pas d’effet secondaire » mais il ne disent pas le principal effet secondaire sur les chrétiens c’est-à-dire « qu’ils éloignent les gens du Christ, de l’Eglise et du Salut que le Christ a apporté à ce monde ». Le document du Vatican « Jésus Christ Porteur d’Eau Vive » explique clairement le danger caché de l’Homéopathie et d’autres médecines alternatives basées sur des pouvoirs occultes.
J’ajoute ici quelques articles et extraits de quelques médecins
et experts éminents en la matière et je laisse le discernement
et le jugement aux lecteurs.
Homéopathie, sain ou occulte ?
Dr Manfred Heide - L’auteur du présent article est médecin-chef à la clinique de Bad Laasphe, et spécialiste en médecine interne et médecine naturelle. L’homéopathie se veut une science expérimentale, et représente actuellement le courant paramédical le plus important. Mais ses effets réels ne sont pas prouvés scientifiquement. «Des examens cliniques effectués sur des préparations homéopathiques distinctes relatives à des maladies distinctes donnent des résultats erronés et incertains» (1).
Hahnemann et son principe de similitude
L’homéopathie a été fondée par un médecin allemand, le docteur Samuel Hahnemann (1755-1843), un contemporain de Goethe. Selon Blatter (2), il fut l’ami de Mesmer, l’un des grands pourfendeurs de la foi chrétienne de son temps, et qui développa le magnétisme. Hahnemann était franc-maçon, libre-penseur, doué de capacités intellectuelles supérieures à la moyenne. Il ne se satisfaisait pas des résultats de la médecine traditionnelle de son époque et énonça ses propres théories. Suite à quelques expérimentations, il émit l’hypothèse que les maladies pouvaient être guéries par les substances, diluées, qui les avaient générées.
C’est ainsi qu’il établit son fameux «principe de similitude», selon lequel «le semblable guérit le semblable» (similia similibus curentur). Ce principe de similitude était déjà connu dans les médecines populaires du Tibet, de la Chine et de l’Arabie, et il fut connu d’Hippocrate et de Paracelse. Mais Hahnemann le reprit et le systématisa dès 1796 par de nouvelles expérimentations pratiques (3). La règle de la similitude est donc le noyau dur de l’homéopathie, dont l’étymologie vient du grec «homoion» (semblable) et «pathos» (maladie)
Homéopathie: Diluer la substance à l’infini
Un autre principe de l’homéopathie est la dilution infinitésimale de la substance. Contrairement à l’allopathie, qui repose sur l’administration plus ou moins forte et élevée de médicaments, l’homéopathie applique des doses fortement diluées («homéopathiques»). Car pour Hahnemann, la dilution a un effet dynamique, démultiplicateur: une dose infime possèderait donc des vertus guérissantes accrues. Les détracteurs de l’homéopathie affirment que la dose retenue est comparable à une goutte d’eau dans un lac! Cette dilution infinitésimale est l’un des points controversés de l’homéopathie.
Thérapie et esprit
Dans son livre «Organon der Heilkunde» (4), Hahnemann explique qu’à partir de la dilution C30, «la matière est à tel point réduite» qu’elle présente «une particule qui n’est plus quantifiable; manifestement, par la dynamique de la dilution. La matière est réduite à sa substance intrinsèque et pure, et c’est là qu’elle présente tout son potentiel spirituel.»
«L’explication selon laquelle la dilution "dynamiserait" le médicament tout en lui conférant un pouvoir spirituel repose sur des conceptions magiques» (5). Dans la préface de sa cinquième partie consacrée aux «Maladies chroniques», Hahnemann écrit: «Les dynamisations homéopathiques sont de véritables stimulateurs des propriétés médicinales cachées dans les corps naturels (...) qui peuvent ainsi agir sur notre esprit et notre vie...»
Homéopathie: qu’en est-il en réalité?
En termes strictement scientifiques, il n’est pas possible que ces produits puissent avoir un effet, car après un nombre élevé de dilutions, il ne reste presque plus de trace de la substance active. A titre d’exemple, une dilution de type D20 équivaut à un litre de produit versé dans l’ensemble des eaux de notre globe! A la puissance D31, l’effet serait celui d’une goutte sur une masse un million de fois plus importante que notre planète...
Certaines préparations sont de l’ordre de D1000 ou plus...et l’on parle encore de succès! Commentaire d’un spécialiste en médecine naturelle chrétien (6): «On sait parfaitement qu’à partir de la dilution D23, il n’y a plus une seule molécule de la substance-mère. Ce qui se passe dès cette étape-là n’est donc rien d’autre qu’un rituel où l’on secoue de l’alcool...Le vrai homéopathe travaille avec du D30, pour être sûr qu’il n’y a plus de matière du tout» (7).
Hahnemann a dit lui-même que ses produits n’avaient pas un effet «chimique», mais «dynamique», et que des forces particulières entraient en jeu. Hahnemann qualifiait aussi de «dynamique» la force d’un aimant sur le fer, tout comme il intégrait dans sa théorie les forces magnétiques de Mesmer. «Les fondements de l’homéopathie et le recoupement avec d’autres théories manifestent ses liens avec l’occultisme et la magie. Les forces recherchées sont occultes et non scientifiques... Hahnemann mentionne aussi dans sa thérapie expérimentale une dynamique des médicaments proche du mesmérisme» (8). L’homéopathie Samuel Hahnemann.
La force cosmique
Qu’est-ce qui se cache, finalement, derrière les préparations homéopathiques? «A la base de ces médicaments se trouve la notion de force cosmique; celle-ci renvoie à une vision du monde tout à fait occulte. La force cosmique dont parlent tour à tour les magies blanche et noire, le yoga, la radiesthésie et l’anthroposophie, entre autres, ne peut nullement être identifiée à la puissance divine (2).»
Hahnemann a écrit: «Si l’on fait tomber une goutte de médicament dans un grand lac, le mélange n’en fera pas un médicament, car la force serait absorbée. Mais en secouant fortement le liquide et en frottant la poudre en petites doses, ses vertus sont intensifiées» (cité par (8)). Selon Hahnemann, au moment de la confection des doses homéopathiques, une force passe du fabricant au médicament, de façon mystérieuse... La manière de faire transiter cette force - en la dynamisant - dans un élément amoindri, manifeste le côté occulte du procédé. Les affirmations de Hahnemann permettent de conclure qu’il avait une conception strictement spirite des maladies.
Au paragraphe 31 de son oeuvre maîtresse, «Organon», il déclare que les maladies sont des «dysfonctionnements de la dynamique de l’esprit humain». Sa théorie de l’effet des médicaments dilués (la «dynamisation ») est également de type spirite: «Les substances se réduisent ainsi à leur nature la plus pure, qui est spirituelle... » Dans son «Organon», Hahnemann explique lui-même comment la substance médicamenteuse se transforme, suite à une procédure mécanique, en une force guérissante subtile, d’ordre spirituel. «Nous avons là une authentique doctrine de spiritualisation de la matière. C’est du spiritisme à l’état pur...»(8). Dans ses fondements, l’homéopathie est donc proche du mesmérisme; dans les deux démarches, des forces mystérieuses transitent vers le malade.
Hahnemann a développé une thérapie où les forces occultes jouent un rôle important - tout comme dans le magnétisme. «Ces corrélations manifestent l’essence même de l’homéopathie» (9). L’homéopathie a également servi de complément à l’anthroposophie de Rudolph Steiner, qui avait lui-même vécu des phénomènes occultes dans son enfance: contact avec les morts et divers esprits. «La médecine Weleda présente des similitudes avec l’homéopathie, dont Rudolph Steiner a repris le principe des potentialisations. Toutefois, l’effet guérissant ne se produit pas ici selon le principe des similitudes, mais par de la "voyance" (1). «Les principes de la "médecine anthroposophique" reposent sur l’imagination, l’inspiration et l’intuition, par lesquelles des "influences cosmiques" (comme dans l’astrologie, autre pseudo-science) sont captées. L’anthroposophie combine donc sa doctrine ésotérique avec les conceptions irrationnelles de l’homéopathie» (9).
Homéopathie: en résumé...
Samuel Hahnemann, tenant de l’occultisme, prétendait lui-même avoir reçu sa méthode par le biais de révélations spirites. Il était hostile au Seigneur Jésus, qu’il considérait comme un doux rêveur. Sa pensée repose sur le principe de similitude de la doctrine micro-/macrocosmique. Sa conception, selon laquelle toute matière contient une part d’esprit, n’est pas du tout biblique. Il était persuadé que la dilution des médicaments devait libérer toujours plus de forces dans la matière; or, d’un point de vue chimique, une dilution de puissance supérieure à D23 ne laisse plus rien de la substance originelle - le procédé ne laisse que des éthers: l’esprit - selon la compréhension que l’on a de ce terme. De nombreuses personnes - des croyants notamment - cherchent la guérison par le biais de méthodes parfois occultes. Mais, contrairement à ce qu’a écrit un homéopathe, tout ce qui guérit n’est pas forcément bon.
Cet article est un condensé du livre de Manfred Heide: «Irrwege des Heils», paru aux éditions Schulte & Gerth, Asslar.
1) M. Richter: Notes personnelles du 30.12.1986
2) K. Blatter: Pratiques paramédicales, Bible et communauté 82, No 2, 1982
3) M. Dorcsi: Principes de l’homéopathie, journal des médecins autrichiens 33, No 23, 1978, 1300
4) S. Hahnemann: Organon de la médecine, 6e édition, Editions Dr Schwabe, Hrsg. R. Hael, Leipzig 1921
5) R. König: Médecines douces, Hänssler-Editions, Neuhausen-Stuttgart 1987
6) K.H. Däumer: Entretien au sujet du livre d’O. Markmann (96) dans «Ferme et fidèle», No 30
7) Th. Dethlefsen: le hasard, une chance, Goldmann-Editions de poche 880
8) O. Markmann: les méthodes de guérison occultes de l’homéopathie et de la biochimie, Editions Lorenz-Keip, Berlin, 1978
9) G. Glowatzki: La pensée magique de la médecine et son arrière-plan anthroposophe. Dans: Oepen/Prokop: Méthodes marginales de la médecine. Société du Livre Scientifique, Darmstadt 1986
Les documents bibliographiques ci-dessus ont été édités en allemand.
HOMÉOPATHIE: CONTROVERSE CHEZ LES CHRÉTIENS
L’homéopathie est certainement la thérapie parallèle la plus controversée parmi les chrétiens. Si les uns la condamnent en bloc notamment à cause de l’arrière-plan occulte de son fondateur, d’autres sont plus nuancés, bien que sceptiques. Selon Robert Golaz, de la Pharmacie Internationale Golaz Chemist SA (Lausanne), la majorité des produits homéopathiques ne sont pas fabriqués selon des procédés occultes. Toutefois, même dans le cadre d’un produit «sain», le thérapeute peut encore exercer une influence (choix du médicament effectué à l’aide d’un pendule, etc.). Il s’avère que la plupart des patients ne sont pas en mesure de savoir si les médicaments ont été fabriqués de manière douteuse ou scientifique. La prudence s’impose donc... (Les éditeurs)
Recherche d'une plante
POSITION DE L’ASSOCIATION DES DROGUISTES CHRÉTIENS
L’Association des droguistes chrétiens admet l’homéopathie dans certaines limites (potentialisations basses), mais se distancie clairement des homéopathes qui exercent des pratiques occultes, telles que le pendule, pour chercher la substance requise.
Pour les problèmes relatifs à la colère, à la jalousie, au désir de vengeance et d’autres difficultés de ce type, elle recommande la cure d’âme. L’Association rappelle que le fondateur de l’homéopathie Samuel Hahnemann, ainsi que plusieurs homéopathes actuels, affirment que ce n’est pas la substance d’une préparation qui agit, mais sa «force immatérielle».L’Association pose donc les questions suivantes:
- Comment les produits homéopathiques agissent-ils dans ces préparations
à dilutions infinitésimales?
- La «puissance de vie» contenue dans les préparations peut-elle être assimilée au souffle divin décrit dans Genèse 2, 7, ou s’agit-il d’une puissance occulte?
- Lorsque l’on secoue et dilue le produit, des forces cosmiques sont-elles associées, ou s’agit-il de simples processus physiques?
LES RAISONS QUI M’ONT POUSSÉ À RENONCER À VENDRE DES PRODUITS ANTHROPOSOPHES ET HOMÉOPATHIQUES
Témoignage de Hanspeter Horsch
L’auteur de ce témoignage est droguiste à Heiden, et naturopathe
J’ai vendu pendant des années des produits homéopathiques et anthroposophiques; j’ai même promu personnellement l’homéopathie et j’avais plus d’un argument pour défendre ces préparations. Les résultats observés auprès de mes clients ajoutaient encore de l’eau à mon moulin. Mais, après avoir discuté longuement avec des frères et soeurs dans la foi qui refusaient avec conviction l’homéopathie, j’ai commencé à voir plus clair sur certains points jusque-là refoulés - à la vérité pour des raisons matérielles. Un beau soir, mon épouse et moi-même avons décidé de ne plus tergiverser, et de cesser de vendre des médicaments dont les bases seraient incompatibles avec l’Evangile de Jésus-Christ. Cette décision a été suivie d’une grande paix, mais aussi d’âpres combats.
Nous n’avons pas agi sur un coup de tête, mais après mûre réflexion. J’étais interpellé par le fait que l’homéopathie s’attache beaucoup aux effets immatériels des substances. Les dysfonctionnements que l’homéopathie prétend soigner- la haine, la convoitise, l’envie, la jalousie - sont des comportements que la Bible nomme péchés. En vendant ces médicaments, j’ai réalisé que je soutenais un autre évangile que le seul qui nous ait été donné. J’ai donc quitté cette voie après l’avoir confessée, tout en réalisant tout à nouveau la valeur du sacrifice accompli par Jésus-Christ. Notre décision a suscité bien des réactions au sein de notre équipe de travail et de notre clientèle, et j’ai ainsi eu l’occasion de témoigner de ma foi. Nous avons aussi discuté avec des collègues à ce sujet... Et, même si les affaires ont été moins bonnes suite à notre décision, nous avons vu la main de Dieu, et notre foi en a été affermie. Nous avons aussi vécu quotidiennement de petits miracles, et cela se poursuit depuis trois ans et demi!
Hahnemann a dit lui-même que ses produits n’avaient pas un effet
«chimique» mais «dynamique», et que diverses forces
particulières agissaient sur les médicaments
Article paru et édité par Campus pour Christ Suisse romande
Video conférence du
Père Joseph Marie Verlinde
Dr. John Ankerberg, Dr. John Weldon
The Basic Errors of Homeopathy1
Discovering how homeopathy began is crucial to understanding why it is a false method of diagnosis and treatment. Homeopathy was developed by Samuel Hahnemann (1755-1843). In 1810 Hahnemann published his Organon of the Rational Art of Healing,2 the “Bible” of classical homeopathy.3 Editions today are frequently titled Organon of Medicine.
Hahnemann was a physician who had wisely rejected many of the somewhat barbaric medical practices of his day, but this left him without a profession. In order to support his family, he resorted to translating books into German and practicing other vocations. Nevertheless, he always retained his interest in medicine; for example, he experimented with drugs and conducted other research.
One day he was translating a book which had described the effects of quinine or Peruvian bark on malaria. Out of curiosity, Hahnemann took the drug himself and discovered that it ap-peared to cause symptoms similar to malaria: general malaise, chills, fever, etc. Hahnemann was struck with a revolutionary thought: The possibility that a substance which causes symp-toms in a healthy person might cure those symptoms in a sick person. He therefore continued testing this idea on other substances using himself, his friends, and his family as subjects. Believing the results confirmed his theory, he developed the basic theory of homeopathy: “like cures like.” In other words, any substance producing symptoms in a healthy person similar to those symptoms in a sick person will cure the sick person.
The word “homeopathy” comes from two Greek words which reflect this basic idea; Homoios, meaning like or similar and pathos meaning pain or suffering. Homeopathic medicine, then, is that substance which produces similar pain or suffering in a healthy person to that experienced by a sick person. In Hahnemann’s own words:
By observation, reflection and experience, I discovered that, contrary to the old allopathic method, the true, the proper, the best mode of treatment is contained in the maxim: To cure mildly, rapidly, certainly, and permanently, choose, in every case of disease, a medicine which can itself produce an affection similar to that sought to be cured!Hahnemann proceeded to conduct experiments on other people by examining and recording their “reactions” to a wide variety of different substances. These were termed homeopathic “provings.” Once a particular item was given to a person, everything that happened to that person for a number of days or weeks (physically or mentally) was carefully observed and recorded as a supposed “effect” of that particular substance. Hahnemann also culled the litera-ture of his day to see if similar effects had been noted by anyone else.
Hitherto no one has ever taught this homeopathic mode of cure, no one has carried it out in practice.4
Over time, Hahnemann and his followers conducted an endless number of “provings,” admin-istering minerals, herbs, and other substances to healthy persons, including themselves, and recording the alleged “actions” of these items. Each substance, of course, produced a large number of symptoms; according to Hahnemann’s research, the lowest was ninety-seven differ-ent symptoms, the highest being over fourteen hundred symptoms! With each new edition of his Materia Medica Pura the symptoms increased. As one biographer observed:
The number of medicinal manifestations he noted and recorded increased daily. While the first edition of his Materia Medici Pura contains information about six hundred and fifty proved reactions to belladonna, the number rises to 1422 in the second edition. In the same way, the figures for nux vomica mount from 961 to 1267, and the first edition’s 1073 citations for pulsatitia become 1163 in the second.Eventually these records were compiled into a reference book, the homeopathic Materia Medica (Latin for “materials of medicine”), which lists the substances or “medicines,” giving a detailed account of the physical and mental symptoms they supposedly cause and will therefore supposedly cure.
This method of homoeopathic practice remains a unique psychic phenomenon. It goes far beyond the frontiers of what may be learned, and demands an almost oriental capacity for absorption and concentration.5
But Hahnemann’s “discovery” of homeopathy was flawed from the start in at least eight major ways.
First, Hahnemann had apparently misinterpreted the symptoms he experienced after taking quinine. He thought they were symptoms of malaria, but they weren’t. “Hahnemann had taken quinine earlier in his life, and it is quite probable that his experiment had caused an allergic reaction, which can typically occur with the symptoms Hahnemann described. However, he interpreted them as malaria symptoms.”6
Thus, not surprisingly, the particular symptoms described have been unique to Hahnemann and a few other homeopaths. Those researchers outside of homeopathic ranks who tested quinine for similar symptoms have never been able to produce the effects that Hahnemann claimed. In other words, experiments using healthy test persons have never produced the symptoms Hahnemann claimed should be produced.
Lack of Independent Verification
The second problem was that the “provings” conducted by Hahnemann and other homeo-paths and recorded in the Materia Medica have also never been capable of replication by non-homeopaths. In fact, only homeopaths appear to be able to produce the symptoms cited in their Materia Medicas. For example, as long ago as 1842, one hundred and fifty years ago, homeo-pathic “provings” were tested and failed to produce the symptoms homeopathy attributes to them. In a critical lecture series delivered in 1842, “Homeopathy and Its Kindred Delusions,” the famous Oliver Wendell Holmes, M.D., for thirty-five years an eminent anatomy professor at the Harvard Medical School, observed:
Now there are many individuals, long and well known to the scientific world, who have tried these experiments upon healthy subjects, and utterly deny that their effects have at all corresponded to Hahnemann’s assertions.
[The] distinguished physician [Andral] is Professor of Medicine in the School of Paris, and one or the most widely known and valued authors upon practical and theoretical subjects the profession can claim in any country…. Assisted by a number of other persons in good health, he experimented on the effects of Cinchona [Peruvian bark], aconite, sulphur, arnica, and the other most highly extolled remedies. His experiments lasted a year, and he stated publicly to the Academy of Medicine that they never produced the slightest appearance of the symptoms attributed to them....
M. Double, a well-known medical writer and a physician of high ranking in Paris, had occasion so long ago as 1801, before he had heard of Homeopathy, to make experiments upon Cinchona, or Peruvian bark. He and several others took the drug in every kind of dose for four months, and the fever it is pretended by Hahnemann to excite never was produced.
M. Bonnet, president of the Royal Society of Medicine of Bordeaux, had occasion to observe many soldiers during the Peninsular War, who made use of Cinchona as a preservative against different diseases—but he never found it to produce the pretended paroxysms.
If any objection were made to evidence of this kind, I would refer to the express experiments on many of the Homeopathic substances, which were given to healthy persons with every precaution as to diet and regimen, by M. Louis Fleury, without being followed by the slightest of the pretended consequences.7
Lack of Sufficient Controls
A third major flaw was Hahnemann’s basic method. He wrongly assumed that his own experi-mental safeguards proved that the particular substances actually had the observed effects. But his safeguards were ineffective, and he proved nothing. All that Hahnemann and earlier homeo-paths observed was the normal variety of “symptoms” that any people would experience over a period of days or weeks, which were then falsely attributed to the substance itself.
In essence, the basic error of the Materia Medica is that the physical and mental symptoms that people would have normally experienced, even without the substance, were attributed to the effects of the substance itself. Remember, the substances themselves were often given in minuscule or non-existent doses, so how could they produce any symptoms at all? Further, these “provings” were carried out over days and weeks and the subjects themselves were told to expect symptoms:
Hahnemann seems to have somehow overlooked the fact that people regularly experience “symptoms,” unusual physical and emotional sensations, whether taking drugs or other stimulants, or not—especially if they have been forewarned that the experimental pills that they have been given might, nay probably will, cause symptoms and that the symptoms might be mild and take several days or weeks to manifest themselves. Thus prepared by suggestion, Hahnemann’s provers were inclined to regard the morning backache formerly charged to poor sleeping posture as a consequence of drugs....8Consider the alleged “symptoms” of chamomilla as given by Hahnemann in his Materia Medica Pura (1846, Vol. 2, pp. 7-20): “Vertigo…. Dull….aching pain in the head…. Violent desire for coffee…. Grumbling and creeping in the upper teeth…. Great aversion to the wind…. Burning pain in the hand…. Quarrelsome, vexatious dreams…. heat and redness of the right cheek….”9
In fact, Hahnemann listed some thirteen pages of “symptoms” of chamomilla. Can it seriously be maintained that this substance will produce some thirteen pages of symptoms in healthy people? Or that it will cure these symptoms in the sick?
As medical historian Harris L. Coulter observes:
The allopathic physician takes a contrary view, feeling that the measurement of physiological and pathological parameters are more reliable guides to treatment precisely because they are “objective,” while the “subjective” symptoms [of homeopathy] are too ephemeral and unstable to be reliable.10
1 This information is extracted from John Ankerberg, John Weldon, Can You Trust Your Doctor (Brentwood, TN: Wolgemuth & Hyatt, 1991) pp. 270-283, 315-319).
2 Samuel Hahnemann, Organon of Medicine, 6th edition, reprint (New Dehli, India: B. Jain Publishers., 1978).
3 Hahnemann published his first work on homeopathy in 1805, although in 1796 he had published his first paper containing similar ideas (Oliver Wendell Holmes, “Homeopathy,” in Douglas Stalker, Clark Glymour, eds., Examining Holistic Medicine (Buffalo, NY: Prometheus Books, 1985), p. 221.
4 Hahnemann, Organon, p. 80.
5 Martin Gumpert, Hahnemann: The Adventurous Career of a Medical Rebel (New York, NY: L. B. Fisher, 1945), p. 166.
6 Samuel Pfeifer, M.D., Healing at Any Price? (Milton Keynes, England: Word Limited, 1988), p. 65.
7 Holmes, “Homeopathy,” p. 230.
8 James C. Whorton, “The First Holistic Revolution: Alternative Medicine in the Nineteenth Century in Stalker and Glymour, eds., Examining Holistic Medicine, pp. 31-32.
9 Douglas Stalker, Clark Glymour, eds., Examining Holistic Medicine (Buffalo, NY: Prometheus Books, 1985), p. 32; cf. David S. Sobel, ed., Ways of Health: Wholistic Approaches to Ancient and Contemporary Medicine (New York, NY :Harcourt Brace Jovanich, 1979), pp. 295-297.
10 Sobel, ed., Ways of Health, p. 297.
Dr. John Ankerberg, Dr. John Weldon
The Basic Errors of Homeopathy (Continued)
Irrelevant Additions to Diagnosis
A fourth major flaw in Hahnemann’s method was his assumption that a host of unrelated issues were important to the diagnosis and treatment of a particular illness. What most people would consider irrelevant information was for Hahnemann crucial. He discusses how the ho-meopathic physician must be concerned with a nearly endless number of issues which a mod-ern doctor would simply ignore. For example, Hahnemann explains that,
the physician sees, hears, and remarks by his other senses what there is of an altered or unusual character about him [the patient]. He writes down accurately all that the patient and his friends have told him in the very expressions used by them….1The questions asked are often unrelated to any physical problem. For example, the homeo-path may ask, “In what position do you like to sleep?” Or, “When do you become dizzy?” He will want to know how the person feels before a storm—or how they feel when their collar is unbut-toned. He thinks it important to know if they walk in their bare feet or whether they like or dislike having a belt around their waist. Questions will be asked concerning susceptibility to heat and cold, about times of sadness, frustration, or anger.
He begins a fresh line [of questioning] with every new circumstance mentioned by the patient or his friends, so that the symptoms shall all be ranged separately one below the other.2
The homeopath will want to hear about the person’s fantasies and aspirations, their dreams and fears. Homeopath Dr. Jacques Michaud comments, “Dreams are a mysterious but impor-tant aspect of the personality…. The information we draw from them is sometimes precise enough to indicate a remedy.”3
The homeopath will also want to know the exact location or pattern of pimples and itches. He will observe the physical appearance of the patient, including the complexion and manner of dress. The homeopath observes patient idiosyncrasies and wants to know what the patient thinks concerning how others think of him. He wants to know how he behaves during sleep; whether he snores at in-breathing or exhaling. Does he lie only on his back or on his side? Which side? Does he sleep covered up; what does he wear to bed?4
What any of this has to do with medicine has never been demonstrated by the homeopathic community. That homeopaths might be good counselors who ask picturesque questions may explain their popularity, but it does little for their medical standing.
Experience Determines Truth
A fifth major problem in the birth of homeopathy was that Hahnemann’s experiences alone convinced him of the truth of his theories. Nor was he concerned with a proper explanation of what he experienced; the fact that it “happened” was sufficient proof. Hahnemann emphasized, “... pure experience [is] the sole and infallible oracle of the healing art.”5 Concerning his results, “... it matters little what may be the scientific explanation of how it takes place; and I do not attach much importance to the attempts made to explain it.”6
This basic approach of Hahnemann has been the model of homeopaths since the beginning. It illustrates the inherent flaw of homeopathic practice: To rely wholly upon experience can be misleading. By relying on one’s experience—that homeopathic medicines seem to cure, and never asking the reason why—homeopaths have done nothing more than perpetuate Hahnemann’s own error. They have never proven that the homeopathic substance itself is the reason behind the cure. As we have repeatedly emphasized throughout this text, it is not good enough that something seems to work; it must be proven to work.
Susceptibility to Magical Thinking
The sixth major error undergirding the birth of homeopathy was Hahnemann’s susceptibility to magical thinking. Hahnemann discovered that certain substances produced severe and unwanted reactions in some patients. He therefore sought to reduce the dosages given. In attempting to find the smallest effective dose for his substances, he thought he encountered a curious phenomenon. The more he diluted a given substance, the more powerful it seemed to become. In fact, he believed the medicines were immensely powerful when not even a single molecule of the original substance remained.7
Thus, homeopathic medicines were and are prepared according to what are called “successed high dilutions.” As noted earlier, homeopathic substances or “medicines” are diluted according to a standard scale of measurement. One part of the original substance is mixed with nine parts of water or other inert solution. This may be termed potency one or 1X. To get a potency two or 2X, one part of this diluted mixture is added to nine parts of the neutral sub-stance and again shaken. In other words, at potency 2X, the original substance has been di-luted one hundred times. At 3X the substance has been diluted one thousand times; at potency 4X it has been diluted ten thousand times and at potency 6X one million times, etc. Sooner or later, a limit must be reached where there is not even a single molecule of the original sub-stance left. This occurs at approximately 24X and is known in chemistry as Avogadro’s number.
Remember, with each dilution the mixture is shaken, which allegedly “potentizes” it, making it effective. As Dr. James Michaud, a modern homeopath, observes, “Dilution means diminishing the quantity of the substance, according to a geometric progression, to the point to where there are no more detectible molecules, and even beyond. But although there’s less and less matter as dilution increases, there is more and more energy.”8 In homeopathic medicines, dilutions where not even one molecule of the original substance remains are common.9
These dilutions are identified in homeopathy according to a decimal scale or a centesimal scale.
In the decimal scale the scale is 1:10. The starting point is one drop of the original substance mixed with nine drops of water, identified as D1. Mixing one drop of this solution with nine drops of water is identified as D2, etc.
In the centesimal scale the scale is 1:100. This involves the mixture of one drop of substance with ninety-nine drops of water, and is identified as CH1. Then, one drop of this liquid mixed with ninety-nine drops of water produces CH2, etc. Thus, the centesimal scale involves much higher dilutions. For example, a D3 solution would represent one part per thousand of the original substance; a CH3 solution would represent one part per million of the original substance.
What is certain is that by dilution CH12 (or D24) there is simply nothing left of the original substance.
But as noted, homeopathy often uses medicines that go far, far beyond these figures, even to the point of greater absurdity:
This process continues, usually to the thirtieth decimal, but often as far as the one-millionth centesimal, and there is no reason to assume it should stop there. This amount of dilution is beyond comprehension. There is nothing left at the twelfth centesimal, and yet that substance continues to be diluted, one to a hundred, one to a hundred, one to a hundred, almost a million times more to produce the millionth centesimal. Furthermore, there is another scale, called the millesimal, in which substances are serially diluted one part to fifty thousand of neutral medium up into the hundreds of thousands of times. It is worse than putting a sugar cube in the ocean. A bewildered Abraham Lincoln called it the “medicine of a shadow of a pigeon’s wing.” Yet we are in the “other” [hermetic or occult] science and a different law holds....Rejection of Physical Medicine and Acceptance of Energy Model
It is no wonder that homeopathy finds little acceptance in mainstream medicine.10
But Hahnemann was actually convinced that diluting medicine was the key to its power. In his own words: “Modern wiseacres have even sneered at the thirtieth potency… [but] we obtain, even in the fiftieth potency, medicines of the most penetrating efficacy….”11 Hahnemann’s expe-rience with allegedly making substances more powerful by diluting them into oblivion leads us to his seventh major error.
But if so, how could spiritual medicines affect and cure physical diseases? Apparently, they could not; the only way a spiritual medicine could work on a physical illness was if a physical disease was only a symptom of a much deeper spiritual disease. Hahnemann thus concluded that disease was not ultimately physical in nature but “spiritual.” Therefore, because disease represents an improper function or imbalance of vital force or energy, it must be cured by a like healing or realignment of energy. This, he believed, was accomplished by medicines prepared homeopathically.
Therefore, homeopathic medicines are spiritual, energetic medicines, not physical medicines, and the homeopath works ultimately with energies, not physical disease. In his Organon of Medicine, Hahnemann declares the following:
The diseases of man are not caused by any [material] substance,… any disease-matter, but... they are solely spirit-like (dynamic) derangements of the spirit-like power (the vital principle) that animates the human body. Homeopathy knows that a cure can only take place by the reaction of the vital force against the rightly chosen remedy that has been ingested.13
Thus, the true healing art is… to effect an alteration in… energetic automatic vital force… whereby the vital force is liberated and enabled to return to the normal standard of health and to its proper function…. Homeopathy teaches us how to effect this.14
But once Hahnemann believed he had discovered that the true cause of illness and disease was based in energy not matter, his hostility toward the medical profession re-doubled.
They only fancied that they could discover the cause of disease; they did not discover it, however, as it is not perceptible and not discoverable. For as far the greatest number of diseases are of dynamic (spiritual) origin and dynamic (spiritual) nature, their cause is therefore not perceptible to the senses; so they [doctors] exerted themselves to imagine one….15Unfortunately, once Hahnemann entered the realm of “spirit,” all bets were off; he could never really know the true cause of disease. He could never again practice medicine based on the physical body in the way the average physician does. He even confessed,
It is the morbidly affected vital energy alone that produces diseases. … How the vital force causes the organism to display morbid phenomena [symptoms], that is, how it produces disease, it would be of no practical utility to the physician to know, and will forever remain concealed from him….16
Thus, for Hahnemann, “There was nothing he would ignore except the immaterial, metaphysical sources of illness” for nothing could be ever known about how disease originates.17
Here we see the fundamental problem between classical homeopathy and modern medicine. Physicians are trained to painstakingly uncover the root cause of disease. But Hahnemann maintains the entire procedure is worthless. Hahnemann again confessed,
It is unnecessary for the cure to know how the vital force produces the symptoms. To regard those diseases that are not surgical as [physical] ... is an absurdity which has rendered allopathy so pernicious.... It is only by the spiritual influences… that our spirit-like vital force can become ill; and in like manner, only by the spirit-like… operation of medicines that it can be again restored to health.18The spirit-like operation of medicines is how homeopathy claims to cure. Hahnemann taught that:
Homeopathic Dynamizations are processes by which the medicinal properties, which are latent in natural substances while in their crude state, become aroused, and then become enabled to act in an almost spiritual manner on our life;…19
In speaking of the “healing energy” of his medicines, he freely admitted such energy did not reside in the “corporeal atoms” of the substances themselves:
That smallest dose can therefore contain almost entirely only the pure, freely-developed, conceptual medicinal energy, and bring about only dynamically such great effects as can never be reached by the crude medicinal substance itself taken in large doses.Finally, he confessed that homeopathy alone could restore the vital force to its proper func-tioning, increase its energetic powers for healing, and that such powers had divine origin;
It is not in the corporeal atoms of these highly dynamized medicines,… that the medicinal energy is found.20
Only homeopathic medicine can give this superior power to the invalidated vital force…. We gradually cause and compel this instinctive vital force to increase its energies by degrees, and to increase them more and more, and at last to such a degree that it becomes far more powerful than the original disease.... The fundamental essence of this spiritual vital principle, imparted to us men by the infinitely merciful Creator, is incredibly great....21In essence, Hahnemann taught that diseases are simply too profound and spiritual for any physician to ever locate them by scientific instruments or specific rests; furthermore, classical homeopaths would claim that any modern “scientifically oriented” homeopathic physician who does so is only deceiving himself. Diseases are the result of energy imbalance, and it is the energy imbalance that must be corrected.
(to be continued)
(from Can You Trust Your Doctor (Brentwood, TN: Wolgemuth & Hyatt, 1991) pp. 270-283, 315-319)
1 Samuel Hahnemann, Organon of Medicine, 6th edition, reprint (New Dehli, India: B. Jain Publishers, 1978), p. 173.
2 Richard Grossinger, Planet Medicine: From Stone Age Shamanism to Post-Industrial Healing (Garden City, NY: Anchor Press/Doubleday, 1980), p. 180.
3 Evelyn deSmedt, et. al., Life Arts: A Practical Guide to Total Being—New Medicine and Ancient Wisdom (New York, NY: St. Martin’s Press, 1977), p. 143.
4 See David S. Sobel, ed., Ways of Health: Wholistic Approaches to Ancient and Contemporary Medicine (New York, NY :Harcourt Brace Jovanich, 1979), p. 196.
5 Hahnemann, Organon, p. 110.
6 Ibid., p. 112.
7 Samuel Hahnemann, The Chronic Diseases, Their Peculiar Nature and Their Homeopathic Cure—Theoretical Part, trans, Louis H. Tafel (New Delhi, India: Jain Publishing Company, 1976), p. 19; Whorton, “Holistic Revolution,” p. 33.
8 deSmedt, Life Arts, p. 142.
9 Daisie Radner, Michael Radner, “Holistic Methodology and Pseudoscience,” in Stalker and Glymour, p. 154.
10 Grossinger, Plant Medicine, p. 195.
11 Hahnemann, Chronic Diseases, p. 19.
12 Hahnemann, Organon, pp. 112-113; Yogi Ramacharaka, The Science of Psychic Healing, reprint (Chicago, IL: Yogi Publication Society, 1937), p. 104.
13 Hahnemann, Organon, p. 18.
14 Ibid., p. 67.
15 Ibid., p. 32.
16 Ibid., pp. 99, 102, final emphasis added.
17 Martin Gumpert, Hahnemann: The Adventurous Career of a Medical Rebel (New York, NY: L. B. Fisher, 1945), p. 137.
18 Hahnemann, Organon, p. 21, cf. p. 112.
19 Hahnemann, Chronic Diseases, p. 17.
20 Hahnemann, Organon, p. 101.
21 Hahnemann, Chronic Diseases, pp. 14-15.
Dr. John Ankerberg, Dr. John Weldon
One Disease, One Remedy
The eighth flaw of Hahnemann was to assume that regardless of the symptoms a person has, there is only one underlying illness having only one proper cure. Classical homeopathy teaches that any and all symptoms are only reflections of a single underlying “energy” disease. Because they are reflections of only one particular disease, they require only one particular medicine. It is the homeopath’s job to determine this one, and only one, medicine which most closely corresponds to the one disease with its given set of symptoms. “The use of a single medicine at a time is a basic principle of classic homeopathy. Thus,… although a person may have numerous physical and psychological symptoms, he or she has only one disease....”1
Traditional homeopaths believe that only one medicine should be given at a time; to violate this principle is to bring damage to the patient. But many modern homeopaths ignore this principle and prescribe whatever they think is needed. Regardless,
…the homeopathic physician is trained to spot the one medicine, or the group of complementary medicines, out of the two thousand-odd substances in the homeopathic pharmacopoeia, which the patient before him needs. He will make regular use of perhaps eight hundred different medicines in his day-to-day practice.2In essence, the eight flaws [see also previous articles] of Hahnemann explain our distrust of homeopathy. They also underscore the problems faced by modern homeopaths. How can they justify a procedure based upon a flawed approach to medical practice?
But to conclude this section, let us cite just one illustration of the difficulty Hahnemann’s theories present to the modern homeopath, and the consequences of such difficulty.
Homeopathy believes that because the true disease is spiritual and not physical, the entire organism is affected, physical and mental. Therefore mental symptoms or problems may be as significant or even more significant than physical symptoms in diagnosing the true disease: “Homeopathic physicians since Hahnemann’s time have made further study of the different grades of symptoms and of their relative importance. They have found that mental symptoms when well defined, are usually the most useful [in diagnosis].”3
Further, the homeopathic diagnosis is contrary to that of the physician practicing scientific medicine. The homeopath does not look for symptoms which are common to all men that would assist the diagnostic process. For example, he does not look for symptoms such as coughing, temperature, runny nose, and sneezing that could indicate a cold or flu.
The homeopath takes an opposite approach and looks for absolutely unique symptoms that are not found in any other person. This is why he must examine and question the client so thoroughly. It is only in this manner he thinks he can make an effective diagnosis.
The homeopath examines (1) the mental symptoms, (2) the general symptoms, and (3) the particular physiological symptoms. “In all three of these categories the symptoms which are absolutely dominant are the ‘strange, rare, and peculiar’ symptoms which qualify the given patient and distinguish him from all others with similar mental, general, or particular symptoms.”4 Thus, the homeopath does not look for symptoms the patient has that are common to known illness but “those which distinguish and differentiate” the patient “from any other patient in the world with a similar complaint”!5
This is why the homeopathic exam can be extremely time consuming. Because illness and disease are not primarily physical, to treat them in such a manner is wrong, misleading, and harmful. The true “spirit” illness is what produces the outward symptoms of disease, whether physical or mental in nature. Thus, only by exhaustive analysis of the physical, mental, and emotional symptoms can the root disease be determined so it may then be properly treated. Thus, “most [root] disorders or diseases… produce symptoms which are emotional, mental, and/or physical in nature….”6
Because both emotional and physical “symptoms” of an illness are diagnosed, the homeopath must determine the emotional and physical “condition” of a patient. As we saw, questions must be asked on the basis of patient likes and dislikes in various areas, such as food, his relationship to the weather and environment, and many other things a normal physician would never consider as having any relationship to an illness or disease.
But Hahnemann was adamant about this approach and so are modern homeopaths. Without detailed questioning, the totality of the symptoms and a whole picture of the disease cannot be accomplished.7 Dr. Harris Coulter states:
The alterations in the vital force are to be perceived only by a most careful and exhaustive analysis of symptoms…. Thus the homeopath must record a long list of symptoms, including many which would be ignored by the orthodox physician. He must pay special attention to the “modalities”: is the particular symptom aggravated or relieved by heat, cold, motion, rest, noise, quiet, wetness, dryness, and changes in the weather;... These changes in the symptoms produced by different environmental conditions are often the key to the correct medicine.8And what are the consequences to such an exhaustive procedure of symptomatology? As we will see, this draining and subjective approach to examination leads many homeopaths into psychic means of diagnosis in order to save time. Furthermore, it also proves that homeopathic diagnosis is a myth.
Contradictory Theory and Practice
It goes without saying that any false system of medicine that has existed as long as home-opathy will have generated its share of confusion and contradiction. Thus, as a whole, home-opathy operates on contrary principles and offers contradictory treatments.
We have divided practitioners of homeopathy into three basic categories: (1) the traditional homoeopathist who largely follows the unscientific and potentially occultic theories of the founder of homeopathy, Samuel Hahnemann; (2) the scientifically and/or parapsychological oriented homeopath who attempts to bring homeopathy into the twentieth century, including, however, the suspect practice of “infinitely” diluting its medications; and (3) the “demythologized” homeopathist who thinks homeopathic medicines may work by unknown principles but questions that homeopathic medicines can be effective in dilutions so high that none of the original medicine remains. The first category, the traditionalist, stands in contrast to the second and third categories which reflect more of a modern approach to homeopathy. However, both categories one and two stand in contrast to category three in their more occultic approach.9
The traditional homeopath generally follows the teachings and philosophy of Samuel Hahnemann, offering the least amount of revision, if any, in light of modern scientific knowledge. This group almost blindly accepts all or most of Hahnemann’s ideas and is the most overtly reactionary, anachronistic, and perhaps occultic among the three. They readily prescribe ho-meopathic medicines in such high dilutions that not a single molecule of the original substance remains. They believe that the homeopathic practice of repetitive shaking and diluting the sub-stance somehow energizes it to become an effective medicine. They may employ astrology, radionics devices, pendulums, or spiritistic revelations in their work.
The second category is comprised of both scientifically oriented homeopaths and parapsychologically oriented practitioners. The scientific homeopath usually operates in con-junction with scientific medicine and believes that homeopathy works on the basis of physical principles that have not yet been discovered. This group thinks science will one day prove the truth and efficacy of homeopathy.
In France, there are some three thousand M.D.’s who use homeopathy; many of them think its “effectiveness” is caused by some material reaction in the body not yet scientifically under-stood. They do not necessarily accept the idea of immaterial, mystical forces or spiritual ener-gies. Boiron Laboratories, the major homeopathic pharmaceutical in France, allocates four to five percent of its profits (of $150 million in global sales yearly) to research for discovering the supposed scientific mechanism behind homeopathy.10
This group is embarrassed by the many false theories of Hahnemann that continue to be accepted by homeopaths. These practitioners are attempting to bring new support to home-opathy based on scientific medicine and modern scientific theories such as those in quan-tum physics.
But the approach based on supposed parallels to the phenomena of quantum mechanics is suspect at best, and plain wrong in many formulations.11 For example, neither the actions of sub-atomic particles nor their observed paradoxes are applicable to the homeopathic claim that infinite dilutions of a substance somehow produce extremely powerful medicines.
The scientific approach of this practitioner is sometimes legitimate, but it is also sometimes compromised by the other “scientific” homeopath, the parapsychological practitioner. The para-psychological homeopath combines scientific research with occultic practices or principles. This group often employs such things as divinatory pendulums and occultic radionic devices in their attempt to lend “scientific” credibility to homeopathy. They, too, may accept astrology or spiritistic revelations. They are little different from the modern parapsychologist in general who attempts to use scientific methods and experiments in order to investigate clearly occultic phe-nomena.
But even in the category of scientific homeopath, problems remain in the classification of their practices. Many of them maintain that homeopathy is only effective in such high dilutions that not a single molecule of the homeopathic medicine remains. This raises the issue of how scientific such practitioners really are.
Dr. Desmichelle, an M.D. and honorary president of the Centre Homeopathique de France, states his conviction that “The homeopathic remedy, to be efficient, has to be given in extremely low dosage. The more diluted the active principle, the more powerful the remedy.”12 But what is the “active principle” when not a molecule remains? Homeopaths can’t say.
Further, even when homeopathic M.D.’s use both homeopathy and scientific medicine, the two categories of practice remain distinct and separate. No truly scientific homeopath ever maintains that homeopathy is the practice of scientific medicine; he only maintains a faith that someday, somehow, science will finally discover its alleged workings and then homeopathy will become an accepted part of scientific medicine. But whether such faith is ever justified is clearly open to question.
The third category, the modern “demythologized” homeopath, usually does not prescribe the “infinitely” diluted homeopathic medications nor do they attempt to “cosmically energize” them. These homeopaths are fundamentally pragmatists; they are less concerned about philosophical backgrounds or scientific proof and are attracted to homeopathy because of its “natural” ap-proach to medicine. They believe that homeopathic treatments in the lower potencies (6X-12X) have a legitimate physical, curative effect, probably on the immune system, even though no such effect has ever been scientifically demonstrated. They employ homeopathy primarily because it works and they are not necessarily concerned why.
Despite their differences, the above three categories of homeopathist share two common themes. Neither of the three is, strictly, operating under the principles of scientific medicine, and all of them may potentially be dangerous to one’s health and/or involve one in the occult.
1 Dana Ullman, Stephen Cummings, “The Science of Homeopathy,” New Realities, Summer, 1985, p. 19.
2 David S. Sobel, ed., Ways of Health: Wholistic Approaches to Ancient and Contemporary Medicine (New York, NY :Harcourt Brace Jovanich, 1979), pp. 303-304.
3 Ibid., pp. 301-302.
4 Ibid., p. 302.
5 Harris L. Coulter, “Homeopathy,” in Leslie J. Kaslof, Wholistic Dimensions in Healing: A Resource Guide (Garden City, NY: Dolphin/Doubleday, 1978), p. 48.
6 Ibid., p. 49.
7 Samuel Hahnemann, Organon of Medicine, 6th edition, reprint (New Dehli, India: B. Jain Publishers, 1978), pp. 172 186.
8 Sobel, ed., Ways of Health, pp. 295-296.
9 These categories are for purposes of general contrast; the descriptions given do not necessarily apply to every practitioner.
10 Letter from Annick Sullivan with a copy of personal testimony re: the benefits of homeopathy, p. 2; Mary Carpenter, “Homeopathic Chic,” Health, March, 1989, p. 53.
11 Cf., Douglas Stalker, Clark Glymour, eds., “Quantum Medicine,” in Examining Holistic Medicine (Buffalo, NY: Prometheus Books, 1985), pp. 107-125.
12 Translation from French of an interview with Dr. Desmichelle, M.D., Elle Magazine, April, 1988, p. 2.
by Dr. John Ankerberg and Dr. John Weldon
Previously, we detailed three categories of homeopathic practitioners:
(1) the traditional homoeopathist who largely follows the unscientific
and potentially occultic theories of the founder of homeopathy, Samuel
(2) the scientifically and/or parapsychological oriented homeopath who attempts to bring homeopathy into the twentieth century, including, however, the suspect practice of “infinitely” diluting its medications; and
(3) the “demythologized” homeopathist who thinks homeopathic medicines may work by unknown principles but questions that homeopathic medicines can be effective in dilutions so high that none of the original medicine remains.1
The Nature of the Disagreement
These categories reveal why the homeopathic community is so divided: they cannot agree on either the theoretical basis of homeopathy or its practical application.
To understand how serious this is, imagine the modern medical community vociferously arguing over the nature of a disease, its cause, its symptoms, and the proper remedy. No one outside the profession could possibly know what to believe or the proper method of treatment when the profession itself remained in the dark.
Traditional homeopaths feel that “modern” revisionists have betrayed their tradition and have offered sharp criticism, maintaining they are “pseudo-homeopaths” and “charlatans.” (We tend to agree; because of its premises, homeopathy cannot be so radically compromised without destroying its nature.) In essence, a true homeopath is a Hahnemannian purist; modernists are only engaging in speculations and largely futile research endeavors by attempting to force homeopathy to become what it can never be: scientific medicine. They are muddying the waters and producing confusion over what real medicine is and is not.
To these pure Hahnemannian homeopaths, the scientifically oriented and/or “low dose” homeopaths are essentially heretics performing a travesty upon true homeopathy; they cannot be true homeopaths.2 Further, by their low doses and/or multiple remedies, they are aggravating an illness, not curing it. This is why “Hahnemann viewed these hybrids as ‘worse than allopaths… amphibians… still creeping in the mud of the allopathic marsh… who only rarely venture to raise their heads in freedom toward the ethereal truth.”3
Perhaps an illustration will help us understand the issue involved here. A true Christian is a biblical purist; he accepts the Bible’s claim to be the literal word of God and therefore authorita-tive over his life. Because basic Bible doctrines can objectively be established through accepted hermeneutical principles, modern, liberal, and cultic revisions of Biblical teaching simply do not have the right to the name Christian. Their mere claim to be Christian cannot alter the fact that they deny and reject fundamental biblical doctrines.
But right or wrong, the true principles of homeopathy are Hahnemannian; to violate those principles is to violate homeopathy. This is why even Dr. Grossinger concludes, “These events prove that Hahnemann was right when he denied the possibility of half-homeopathy. Half-home-opathy is nonhomeopathy.”4
Nevertheless, all this reveals why homeopathy will never agree on even fundamental issues; the divisions in theory and practice are far too deep and unmanageable.
If classical practitioners reject modern heretics, modern “homeopaths” think the traditionalists are ignorant and deceived.
The traditional homeopath is perfectly comfortable with the following statement made by the leading homeopathist at the turn of the century, James Tyler Kent, M.D., a statement which makes the more modern homeopath cringe: “There is no disease that exists of which the cause is known to man by the eye or by the microscope. Causes are infinitely too fine to be observed by any instrument of precision.”5
Significantly, Hahnemann was his own worst enemy. It was the extremely bizarre nature of his theories which caused the divisions and confusions among his own followers. For example, Hahnemann claimed that it took him twelve long and arduous years of diligent research and study to discover the major cause of almost all human disease. He claimed that seven-eighths of all disease including things like cancer, asthma, paralysis, deafness, madness, and epilepsy was directly attributed to psora, in less refined terms, itch.
According to Hahnemann’s Organon, this “psora, [is] the only real fundamental cause and producer of all the other… innumerable forms of disease.”6
But “a large majority” of Hahnemann’s own followers refused to accept the idea and, accord-ing to Wolff, a leading homeopath and contemporary of Hahnemann, it “has met with the great-est opposition from Homeopathic physicians themselves.”7 (In his 1842 critical lectures on homeopathy, Oliver Wendell Holmes referred to it as “an almost insane conception, which I am glad to get rid of.”8)
But homeopaths have always been at each other’s throats, so to speak. For example, in 1900 in James Tyler Kent’s Lectures on Homeopathic Philosophy, a commentary on Hahnemann’s Organon, he observes that even though homeopathy was extensively distributed throughout the world, its own doctrines were perverted and polluted primarily by homeopaths themselves.
As a whole, little has changed. Homeopathy is everywhere a contrary practice. Hahnemann himself was aware of contradictory methods and results among his followers,9 and this problem has been the plague of homeopathy ever since. Some homeopaths are purists when it comes to Hahnemann’s theories; some pick and choose what seems suitable to them, and some reject most of his ideas entirely. Some are thus adamant about one aspect of homeopathy that others reject entirely; some prescribe homeopathic medicines in low dilutions, others in incredibly high dilutions, and both claim that only their method is proper. Some homeopaths are vitalists; others allegedly materialists. Some are modern and ecletic, prescribing a variety of additional remedies or therapies along with homeopathy; some stick to homeopathy alone.
In addition, the drugs and their symptoms vary considerably: “Thousands of homeopathic drugs are listed in the cults’ Materia Medicas—handbooks that vary widely from time to time and from country to country 10”
Furthermore, homeopathic Materia Medicas are not exactly reliable. As Oliver Wendell Holmes commented over a century ago in his critical lectures on homeopathy:
What are we to think of a standard practical author on Materia Medica, who at one time omits to designate the proper doses of his remedies, and at another to let us have any means of knowing whether a remedy has even been tried or not, while he is recommending its employment in the most critical and threatening diseases?11Some homeopaths think their medicines must be administered in a state of absolute purity, unmixed with other substances, otherwise you will destroy its effectiveness. But other homeo-paths mix substances freely and claim it is too cumbersome to try and find the one “correct” remedy according to classical homeopathy.12
With homeopaths employing anti-scientific methods, subjective evaluations, and occultic practices and with wide disagreements about theory and practice, it is hardly surprising that the world of homeopathy lives in such disarray.13
As noted, Dr. Richard Grossinger spent ten years researching homeopathy. He concludes that in recent years around the world, “Standards have deteriorated; far worse, there is contro-versy from country to country, and even from doctor to doctor, as to what constitutes acceptable homeopathic treatment.”14 He ends his discussion by noting:
Different levels and types of homoeopathy are inevitable as long as basic contradictions within the system and the practice are unresolved. A person today seeking homeopathic treatment truly enters a great metaphysical riddle, further compounded by historical and ideological variations. We are finally left without an absolutely clear sense of what homeopathy is, without a sense that will allow us to judge practitioners and give clear advice to people seeking doctors.15Perhaps James Taylor Kent was correct when he commented, “We cannot rid ourselves of confusion until we learn what confusion is.”16
1 See “Homeopathy, Part 3” (November 2004) for more details.
2 James Tyler Kent, Lectures on Homeopathic Philosophy (Richmond, CA: North Atlantic Books, 1979), pp. 81, 87.
3 Richard Grossinger, Planet Medicine: From Stone Age Shamanism to Post-Industrial Healing (Garden City, NY: Anchor Press/Doubleday, 1980), p. 231.
4 Grossinger, Planet Medicine, p. 238, cf. p. 234.
5 Kent, Lectures, p. ii.
6 Samuel Hahnemann, Oragon of Medicine, 6th ed., rpt. (New Dehli, India: B. Jain Publishers, 1978), p. 167.
7 Douglas Stalker, Clark Glymour, eds., Examining Holistic Medicine (Buffalo, NY: Prometheus Books, 1985), p. 242; cf. p. 225.
8 Oliver Wendell Holmes, “Homeopathy,” in Ibid., p. 241.
9 e.g., Samuel Hahnemann, The Chronic Diseases, Their Peculiar Nature and Their Homeopathic Cure—Theoretical Part, trans., Louis H. Tafel (New Dehli, India: Jain Publishing Co., 1976), p. 18.
10 Martin Gardner, “Water with Memory? The Dilution Affair: A Special Report,” The Skeptical Inquirer, Winter, 1989, p. 133; See also Wallace I. Sampson, “When Not to Believe the Unbelievable,” and Elie A. Shneour, “The Benveniste Case: A Reappraisal,” in The Skeptical Inquirer, Vol. 14, No. 1, Fall, 1989, pp. 90-95.
11 Holmes, “Homeopathy,” p. 230.
12 Ibid., p. 223; Evelyn deSmedt, et al., Life Arts: A Practical Guide to Total Being—New Medicine and Ancient Wisdom (New York, NY: St. Martin’s Press, 1977), p. 143.
13 Holmes, “Homeopathy,” pp. 225, 242; Kent, Lectures, p. 81.
14 Grossinger, Planet Medicine, p. 240.
15 Ibid., p. 244.
16 Kent, Lectures, p. 55.
H O M O E O P A T H Y : COSMIC ENERGY IN BOTTLES
A VATICAN DOCUMENT
The February 3, 2003 Document on the ‘New Age’ Movement [NAM], in tracing its origins and background through “ancient occult practices and gnosticism” [n 2.4], says that “the essential matrix of New Age thinking is to be found in the esoteric-theosophical tradition which was fairly widely accepted in European intellectual circles in the 18th and 19th centuries. It was particularly strong in Freemasonry, spiritualism, occultism and Theosophy” [n 2.3.1].
It finds that “a focus on hidden spiritual powers or forces in nature has been the backbone of much of what is now recognized as New Age theory” [n 1.3].
WHAT HAS ALL THIS TO DO WITH HOMOEOPATHY ?
Everything, as it is the purpose of this study to analyse. In the section on Health: Golden Living, the Document says “Formal (allopathic) medicine today tends to limit itself to curing particular, isolated ailments, and fails to look at the broader picture of a person’s health… Alternative therapies have gained enormously in popularity and are about healing rather than curing.”
Identifying these ‘alternative therapies’ as ‘holistic health’ techniques, it continues, “There is a remarkable variety of approaches for promoting holistic health, some derived from ancient cultural traditions, whether religious or esoteric… Advertising connected with New Age covers a wide range of practices as acupuncture, biofeedback, chiropractic, kinesiology, homeopathy, iridology… reflexology, Rolfing, polarity massage… meditation and visualisation, psychic healing, various kinds of herbal medicine, healing by crystals or colours…” etc. “The source of healing is said to be within ourselves, something we reach when we are in touch with our inner energy or cosmic energy” [n 2.2.3].
HOW DOES THE DOCUMENT EXPLAIN THIS ‘ENERGY’
According to New Ager “William Bloom’s 1992 Formulation of New Age… All life, in its different forms and states, is interconnected energy…” and one of New Ager David Spangler’s “principal characteristics of the New Age vision is holistic (globalising, because there is one single reality- energy) [Appendix 7.1].
In the New Age “the cosmos is seen as an organic whole- it is animated by an Energy which is also identified as the divine Soul or Spirit” [n 2.3.3]. “In New Age thinking… the energy animating the single organism which is the universe, is ‘spirit’ [n 188.8.131.52]. Recording that Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung was one of the “precursors of the Age of Aquarius”, “a central element in his thought is the cult of the sun, where God is the vital energy within a person” [n 2.3.2]. If homoeopathy satisfies the Vatican criteria of what New Age is, in terms of its founder’s beliefs and its foundational principles in its relation to the occult, gnosticism, esotericism, ancient religious or esoteric traditions, Freemasonry and other alternative medicines, and a focus on holistic health, ‘vital energy’ etc., then it certainly can be declared as a New Age alternative therapy.
At the same time, it must be established that it is not a medical science. This issue is crucial, because in response to his earlier in-depth report on this subject, the writer has received two letters in defence of homoeopathy from Catholics in ministry who have however agreed with his conclusions in his writings on other New Age themes.
Dr. Samuel Christian Friedrich Hahnemann, was born on 11th April 1755 in the German town of Meissen. He studied medicine in Leipzig, later practicing in Vienna, becoming Doctor of Medicine in 1779.
In 1796, he became convinced that as a first step in the treatment of a sickness, a doctor must know the effects a medicine would have in its pure form on a healthy human being.This was followed by a second principle: One should apply in the disease to be healed that remedy which is able to stimulate another artificially produced disease as similar as possible, and the former will be healed – Similia Similibus – Like with Likes. This principle of ‘Homoeopathy’ [from the Greek homoios, similar, and pathos, disease], a word coined and used by Hahnemann, was set down in contrast to Contraria Contraris, [healing Opposites by Opposites] the other therapeutic method available at that time and named ‘allopathy’ [alloios, different]. 1.
He was sure at this stage that the smallness of a dose did not matter…He believed large doses aggravated the disease, because any medicinal substance could cause an adverse reaction unless administered in a proper dose. In 1811, all the work he had done till then culminated in ‘The Organon of Rational Healing’, his most important written work. For the title page of the book, he used as his motto the phrase ‘Aude Sapere’* or ‘Dare to be wise’. *see page 4.
He experimented also with poisons like arsenic and mercury in their
pure form. But they produced an adverse reaction resulting in symptoms
of sickness. This meant making healthy people sick, not sick people healthy.
Where lay hidden the principle of cure ? He started administering dynamized
or potencized drugs, pure substances reduced through a special process
of dilution, rubbing and shaking and through the addition of an indifferent
substance, dry or fluid to a negligible physical quantity, in the dose
which was administered to a sick person.
About the result of potencization: “It will be realized that the quantity of the original substance left is very minute indeed, and to understand how such a trace can do any good at all, we must understand the basis of homoeopathic thought. Homoeopaths believe that once an active substance has been released from its physical manifestations, its spiritual energies are released, and that it is on this level that it will be able to help the patient. It is really the spirit of a substance that is being used” [Pathways to Alternative Medicine, E.G. Bartlett]. “From practical observation, Hahnemann found that the greater the potencization, the greater was the power of the medicine in curing the symptoms homoeopathically indicated… In the third potency, the degree of dilution is one-millionth. It may be difficult to imagine that in a dose say of 10,000 potency there would be some medicine left” [Homoeopathic Guide to Family Health, R.K. Tandon & Dr. V.R. Bajaj M.D].
In The Complete Homoeopathy Handbook, Miranda Castro, F.S. Hom. is candid about the fact that Hahnemann’s “process of dilution incurred… derision from [his contemporaries in] the medical establishment, who could not explain, and therefore could not accept, how anything so dilute could have any effect.”
THE FOUNDING PRINCIPLE
“The Organon was reprinted five times, and in later editions Hahnemann changed his thesis… He had earlier said that medicine should help the body’s self-healing process. Now he began to talk of a ‘vital force’ in the body. This vital force could be called ‘energy’ or ‘consciousness’ or the ‘universal intelligence’ of chiropractors, and Hahnemann said that it was this which gave rise to the body’s immune system and made the body heal itself… It was the ‘Ch’i’ of acupuncture, the ‘Ki’ of shiatzu. Like the acupuncturist, Hahnemann came to see disease as an imbalance in this vital force, and treatment became a question of restoring that balance. Like all the other alternative therapies, therefore, homoeopathy had a holistic approach. The patient had to be seen as a whole man in his environment, and all factors pertaining to his state, not just his present symptoms had to be considered when dealing with him… In this, they are [like] acupuncturists, who cannot point to the meridians of Ch’i because they are not there in a physical sense, but who know that they must have an existence or their healing system would not work.” [Bartlett].
“Homoeopathic remedies are believed to act upon the vital force, stimulating it to heal the body and restore the natural balance.” [Brockhampton Reference Guide to Alternative Medicine].
“In the Organon, Dr. Hahnemann laid down the fundamentals of the then-new doctrine of homoeopathy. He wrote, ‘Substances …are medicines only in so far as they possess each its own specific energy to alter the well-being of man… The medicinal properties of those material substances which we call medicines relates only to their energy to call out alterations in the well-being of animal life. Only upon this conceptual principle of life depends their medicinal influence…” [Tandon and Bajaj].
In Homoeopathy For All, Dr. V. Radha Krishna Murti who was Deputy President of the Indian Homoeopathic Organization with almost 40 years of practice behind him wrote, “Homoeo drugs are prepared by a special process of dynamization which retains only the energy relating to the drug in the globules, and not the material.
“Vital Force: A term used by Hahnemann to describe the energy that permeates all living beings.” [Castro]
IT WORKS ! BUT HOW ?
“Homoeopathy has been attacked again and again on the grounds that the potencised drugs cannot be tested in a laboratory... However laboratory tests have been going on in many countries and certain phenomena not acceptable to conventional science have been observed… On his ‘proving’ trials of the effects of substances on healthy human beings, Hahnemann says, ‘As this natural law of cure manifests itself in every pure experiment, it matters little what may be the scientific explanation of how it takes place’.” [Tandon & Bajaj].
“Homoeopathy is a science based on experience…[and] either stands or falls on the principle of similarity…[In] Similia Similibus Curentur [Like Cures Like]… we are not dealing with a law of similarity in the form of a generally applicable rule of physics or natural phenomenon on which homoeopathy purports to be based.” [Homoeopathy, Dr. W. Schwabe]. Schwabe are one of the world’s leading manufacturers of homoeopathic remedies.
“Homoeopaths have to confess that they do not know how their system works; they can only say that it does.” [Bartlett].
In Homoeopathy, The Complete Handbook Dr. K.P.S. Dhama and Dr. (Mrs.) Suman Dhama write, “We, the homoeopaths, devote a great deal of our time and attention to the correct and precise analysis of symptoms and, based on that analysis, continue to administer our ‘magic pills’ undeterred… 2.
“An eminent allopath of England, Dr. Compton Bennett said that if the homoeopathic method was kept secret, the governments of the world would have been surprised by its curative powers and would be prepared to give anything to learn its secrets. How true is his statement! Homoeopathic treatments, if correctly prescribed, work like magic.”
“Although brought up in a Protestant household, in later life he became a religious free-thinker, believing that God permeated every living thing. He also seems to have believed that he was divinely chosen and guided in his work” [Castro].
“He made it clear in the Organon and elsewhere, that he believed his new doctrine was inspired by God…”
[A biography of Samuel Hahnemann by Dr. Richard Haehl]. According to the French encyclopedia Larousse du Xxe siecle  he was believed to received it through the ‘revelation of heavenly powers’, "revealed truth" directly from "God" whom he named "great spirit adored by the inhabitants of all the solar systems".
[Quotations from Hahnemann’s Organon of Rational Healing].
Dr. H.Unger [a homoeopath] gives a clear description of his spiritual personality: ‘Like Goethe, Hahnemann embodies the two streams of the classical German genre, the pantheistic idealism of nature and the rational idealism of Freemasonry’ (Swiss Journal of Homeopathy No.1/1962).
“The truly homeopathic doctor is initiated into this transcendental, spiritualist world. He must have knowledge ‘of the four states of matter: the solid, liquid, gaseous and radiant states” James T. Kent in The Science and The Art of Homeopathy.
Hahnemann has formulated a whole doctrine explaining man as a tripartite being: will and thought (the inward man); vital energy [spirit substance or immaterial essence]; and, the body, which is material.
“Just a single dose of this remedy will produce a seemingly miraculous cure. How does this cure occur ? As I said, we have no idea, but we do know the method of producing it. What exactly are the homoeopathic remedies ? Again, we do not really know. We only know how to prepare them… When we give a homoeopathic remedy, what are we giving?…Nobody knows. All we know is that it works” [Dr. Bill Gray MD., The Role of Homeopathy in Holistic Health Practice, Yoga Journal, Nov/Dec 1976].
Even his devout German biographer M. Gumpert [Hahnemann,die abenteuerlichen…] who compares him to Goethe, Kant and Martin Luther, is puzzled: “This way of practising homoeopathy is a unique psychic phenomenon”
Homoeopathic authority James Kent in his work Lectures on Homeopathic Philosophy, states that there are two worlds, the physical world and the invisible world, and says that the whole of homoeopathy is bound up in the invisible world.
It is to be noted that ALL of the opinions quoted above are not of opponents to the practice of homoeopathy, but of homoeopaths themselves and biographers of Hahnemann, and are therefore uninfluenced by possible Christian biases against him or the practice of homoeopathy. Christian critics of homoeopathy could not have done better than this to expose the real underpinnings of this supposedly scientific system of healing.
Do Christian writers on the NAM and its Alternative Medicines warn the
believer against the use of homoeopathic medicine ?
I have examined around 40 such works and find that every single one of them definitely does. A study of these books reveals that the protagonists of homoeopathy have, either ignorantly or intentionally, withheld certain aspects of the philosophies and life and of its founder, while highlighting those areas that enhance his image as a crusader for healthy living, or lend support to the tenets of his philosophies and the credibilty of his remedies. These concealed aspects are relevant to the believer who has been using homoeopathy, and an awareness of them is critical to the decision that he or she must take, as we shall see.
In Occult Shock and Psychic Forces, John Weldon and Clifford Wilson give some examples to show that there is no consensus among leading homoeopaths themselves who express divergent views as to the reasons for the working of homoepoathy. “After thoroughly studying the effects of homeopathy, Prof. G. Kuschinsky in his book Lehrbuch der Pharmakologie concludes ‘homoeopathic substances may be admitted in the realm of suggestion, seeing that they possess neither main nor secondary effect [pharmacologically].” Prof. Schwartz of Strasbourg who gives a course on pharmacology states ‘No study of homeopathy to date would appear to be significant. No experimentation authenticates the theory.”
In 1966, Dr. Fritz Donner MD., a homoeopath who made the scientific proof of homoeopathy his goal, published a paper in which he confessed all the failures and all the errors of homeopathy discovered during his years of research [Homoeopathy and Science, O. Prokop and L. Prokop]. In another similar experiment by Prof. H. Rabe, President of the German Homeopathic Society, it was found that “all those displaying symptoms had received placebos.”
[A placebo is a pill or liquid lacking any medicinal properties]. That is why homeopaths are not interested in these experiments and content themselves with their individual successes. Present -day medicine as taught in the universities speaks very little about homeopathy. Its basic literature as well as scientific periodicals do not mention it.
THE OCCULT CONNECTION
The Drs. Dhama [above] could not have been more precise. In the absence of any rational explanation or scientific evidence to validate homoeopathic claims, assessing the curative ‘powers’ of homoeopathic remedies as ‘magic’ is probably the truest statement that a homoeopath can ever make. The Christian vocabulary’s equivalent for ‘magic’ is ‘occult’. Christian writers on New Age themes provide extensive information on the following aspects of homoeopathy and its founder.
Hahnemann studied and delighted in the teachings of a Swiss occultic medical philosopher named Paracelsus (1493-1541). They stimulated his thinking and he developed some of his doctrines, including Similia Similbus, based on them.
He became a Freemason in 1777. ‘Aude Sapere’ is the motto of Freemasonry. He was an ardent follower of ex-Theosophist Emmanuel Swedenborg (1688-1772) of Sweden who taught his followers how to enter a state of consciousness that would put them in touch with spirit entities. His views on invisible life energy are shared by Rudolf Steiner, the pioneer of anthroposophy [wisdom of man]. Anthroposophy, Swedenborgianism and Freemasonry are treated in the Vatican Document on the New Age.
He adopted the practices of Franz Mesmer (1733-1815), a Swiss-German physician who founded the doctrine of animal magnetism called mesmerism. Mesmer used a hypnotic state to heal persons who were sick.
In the Organon, Hahnemann compared the similarities between homoeopathy and mesmerism. Consider this quote from the 6th edition of the Organon: “I find it yet necessary to allude here to animal magnetism… or rather Mesmerism… It is a marvelous, priceless gift of God.”
His ‘vital force’ is the ‘prana’ of yogic philosophy, the monistic ‘universal life force’ that many traditions see as God.
His predominant strain of pantheism would place God everywhere, in each man, each animal, plant, flower, cell, even in homeopathic medicine. As a matter of fact the vocabulary of the Organon is esoteric and its ideas are impregnated with oriental philosophies like Confucianism and Hinduism into whose philosophies his biographers have recorded that he delved. He lived at a time when especially Chinese thought and the teachings of Confucius were increasing in popularity in Europe. For one who claimed divine revelation from God for his principles of homoeopathy, the occult makes a strange bed-fellow.
What could be the source of this revelation, when he is known to have spoken derogatorily about the Son of God ? [2Cor. 4:4]
HAHNEMANN ON JESUS CHRIST
A. Fritsche, his biographer writes “He took offence at the arch-enthusiast Jesus of Nazareth who did not lead the enlightened on the straight way to wisdom, but who wanted to struggle with sinners on a difficult path towards the establishment of the kingdom of God… the man of sorrows who took the darkness of the world on Himself was an offence to the lover of etheric wisdom... Hahnemann certainly was not a Christian… In his struggles as a spiritual seeker, in his plight for enlightenment, he is strongly attracted to the East. Confucius is his ideal.”
From a letter on Confucius and Confucian philosophy, Fritsche quotes
“This is where you can read divine wisdom, without miracle-myths and superstition. I regard it as an important sign of our times that Confucius is now available for us to read. Soon I will embrace him in the kingdom of blissful spirits, the benefactor of humanity, who has shown us the straight path to wisdom and to God, already 650 years before the arch-enthusiast” [Die Idee der Homoeopathie].
His biographer Gumpert [cited above] says that he was influenced by animism and was also into other Eastern religions.
CLOSE ENCOUNTERS WITH THE NEW AGE
Especially in the U.S, alternative therapies like chiropractic and applied kinesiology use homeopathic remedies. Parallels are drawn between homoeopathy and Bach Flower Remedies, a New Age therapy based on Dr. Edward Bach’s process of ‘potentising’ plants, herbs and flowers, in books on New Age medicine. Because of its occult background and theories of healing, many homoeopaths have no difficulty in employing other New Age techniques like psychic diagnosis, astrology, pendulum dowsing [radionics] and healing with gems, crystals and colours in the selection of drugs, medical diagnosis and preparation of remedies. There is extensive documentation on this.
George Vithoulkas’ Homeopathy, Medicine for the New Man begins with
a chapter titled ‘Coming of the New Age’ and his last chapter is ‘Promise
for the New Age’. He says, “The real purpose of homeopathy is to open the
higher centers (brain) for spiritual and celestial influx. The purpose
is to become one with yourself, one with the universe, through your mind”,
a New Age goal.
1. The December 2003 issue of the Slovak charismatic magazine Zivy Pramen [Living Spring] carried an article contributed by Dr. Vladimir Biba, State Department of Drug Control of the Czech Republic, and Fr. Ales Franc, former member of the Czech Homoepathic Society. The article provides evidence to support all that has been already said above, also quoting Hahnemann’s criticism of Jesus Christ as, in their translation of ‘arch-enthusiast’, a fool.
The activity of Hahnemann to make use of mesmerism opened his mind for demonic contacts.
The rudiments of homoeopathy are Gnostic principles. Homoeopathic law sets on a very little quantity of substance, involution and dynamic power - nothing else but an application of gnosticism.
Hahnemann admired Swedenborg who was a gnostic.
Some of the homeopathic healers or physicians misuse God’s Word and Christian religion. Examples:
Dr. Bartak: to look at the bronze snake (Num. 21) "is a way of a homoeopathic healing".
Dethlefsen: The blood of Christ given to the apostles at the Last Supper is "homoeopathic concentrated blood, continuously being practised to reach a high homoeopathic involutioned [diluted] medicine".
The homoeopath Zentrich says: "It was Jesus Christ, who showed us the highest level of the homoeopathic law of similarity – (‘Like cures Like’ principle), when he conquered death through death."
2. Esoteric Practices and Christian Faith, An Aid to Discernment, Fr.
Clemens Pilar Cop, Vienna, 2003.
Apart from its scientific questionability, homoeopathy is an important carrier of esoteric ideas. If somebody asserts… that homoeopathy has nothing to do with esotericism, then this is factually wrong… We see an introduction of an impersonal force as the life giving principle. This idea is found in Gnostic tradition as well… (In homoeopathic teaching) behind the visible material body of man, there is an energy body (depending on your culture- or in the esoteric sense- on your taste, whether it is called chi, prana, Vis Vitalis…etc]…
Vitalism teaches that man is animated by a ‘vital soul’ i.e a ‘spirit-like vital energy’ (as Hahnemann himself put it).
This Vis Vitalis (Latin for life force) is nothing else but a ‘second soul’ or an ‘unconscious’ soul… Here homoeopathy depends on the idea that- seen from the Christian point of view- very definitely can be characterised as problematical.
3. At the February 2004 Asian Seminar on Healing and Deliverance in
Ernakulam, Fr. Larry Hogan, Chief Exorcist of the Archdiocese of Vienna,
when answering questions raised concerning the nature of homoeopathy, said
that ‘homoeopathy is magic’, that he would not recommend anyone to use
it, and that in Europe an estimated 80% of homoeopaths use occult practices
for the selection, preparation and prescription of remedies.
Fr. Larry repeated this firmly a second time in a subsequent session. The Semina was organizerd by the Catholic Charismatic Renewal. Fr. Pilar confirms this statistic in his book.
MORE CONFIRMATION: FR. MULLER’s HOMOEOPATHIC
COLLEGE in MANGALORE
The annual magazines, Pioneer, of the Fr. Muller Homoeopathic Medical College and Hospital, Mangalore, founded by Jesuit missionary Fr. Augustus Muller in 1880, and run by the Diocese of Mangalore, only authenticate our earlier findings. The Freemasonic motto “Aude Sapere”* is printed in several of their issues. *see page 4
They admit that “[This] system of medicine has been struggled (sic) from the time of Dr. Hahnemann till today with lots of criticism” and hence they still continue to reproduce articles in “attempts to justify the scientific basis of homoeopathy” .
“Homoeopathy has made claims of magical cures… Do [homoeopathic prescriptions] really effect any cure ?… Some of the cases do respond, but a majority have no effect”. “Homoeopathy as science of medicine… and as an art of practice, both the areas are explosive and fraught with controversies… Many remedies are partially or unreliably proved… Efforts have been made to provide statistical and scientific data in favour of homoeopathy. However, the scientific community have either refused to take a look or found the explanations above their scientific bent of mind” .
It really means that the ‘explanations’ are not in the realm of science. Why do its proponents feel a desperate need to justify homoeopathy as a science or question its effectiveness as a remedy two centuries after its origination ?
Is it because they themselves need convincing ?
The 1994 and 1998 Pioneers recommend using Bach Flower Remedies [BFR]
and yoga with homoeopathy, respectively.
We learn the use of gems and colours, as well as pranayama, the “life energy, vital force or prana” to heal disease in the issue of 2000. The 1999 issue teaches use of the New Age Alexander Technique, aromatherapy, BFR, tai chi, yoga and meditation. The 2003 issue carries articles on BFR, Universal Life Force Energy – Reiki, The Chakras [“gateways for the flow of life and energy into our physical bodies”] and Tachyon - The Energy with Healing Power. An excerpt from the last-mentioned article:
“In addition to the material physical body that we perceive with our senses, we have several other layers of energetic bodies… The energy… comes from one source. In India, it is called the Divine Mother. Christians call it the Holy Spirit, and in many modern new age spiritual teachings, it is called Cosmic Energy.” 5.
The article, like others, also talks of the ‘subtle energy’ of the ‘subtle body’ [which are ‘vital energy’ equivalents] commonly used in Freemasonic and Theosophical esoteric writings.
The common denominator in all the above ‘alternative’ techniques, including
homoeopathy, is the ‘life force’ principle. Their inclusion is for the
purpose of justifying or reinforcing, as it were, belief in the homoeopathic
concept of ‘vital energy’. If it were not so, they would not find place
in an annual that promotes a supposed modern medical science.
One Pioneer issue mentions the use of Kirlian photography that reportedly maps the aura. The 1999 Pioneer features an essay on how to induce hypnotic trance states in a patient. Pioneer 2000 teaches mudras [hand gestures] for healing- physical, intellectual, spiritual[or holistic]; and music therapy [different ragas to heal different diseases]. There is almost a cultic reverence for Hahnemann who is often referred to as “our Master”. Misuse of homoeopathic practice “is called as criminal treason of Divine Homoeopathy according to our Dr. Samuel Hahnemann” [emphasis theirs, 2000].
“It is a sin to name homoeopathy linked with his followers or disciples, or by terming it as …scientific etc.” .
Says Fr. Pilar, “There is a historical trail from homoeopathy to the Bach-flowers (Eduard Bach, the inventor of this therapy began his career as a homoeopath). Even today, many patients follow the same trail. Once the door to irrationalism has been opened, there is no stopping.” Prof. Dr. Raynaud, homoeopath and director of Pharmaceutical Faculty in Lyon, France, said about homoeopathy: "As soon as you start with it, you stay loyal to it. Perhaps that is why so many physicians in France are literally addicted to it." [Zivy Pramen]
There are, to be sure, some honourable and conscientious ones seeking to utilize a homeopathy detached from its esoteric practices. The question is, ‘can it ?’, rather than ‘can they ?’ Of course, those who see some sort of scientific energy at work in water divining, or who believe that water divination is a gift from God, will see no cause of concern in using homoeopathy.
REASONS AND RISKS
As Christians we need to understand why homoeopathy, and indeed many other seemingly ridiculous New Age alternative therapies, are not discounted or abandoned. The reason is simple. THEY WORK!
What answer can be given to someone who says he took a remedy and it worked ? The Christan believer is obliged to make a discerning enquiry to find out why they work. Articles like this provide the searcher with information in that direction. Everyone will have probably heard reports of how a friends or relative was wonderfully cured by a homoeopathic remedy.
But the question is: What was it that actually healed them ? The cosmic
occult vital force in the remedy ?
The accompanying measures (no smoking, no alcohol, dieting, taking a holiday) ? Or faith in the healer or his remedies?
About a century ago, the first experiments were conducted with placebos, tablets with no active ingredients. The researchers discovered that, more important than the substantial effect of many medications, is the faith [both, of the doctor as well as the patient] in the effect of the remedy. The placebo effect is probably the most important factor in the success of homoeopathic remedies. The least probable factor in a cure is the homoeopathic remedy itself. All genuine clinical trials have determined that the ‘cures’ are due to either the placebo effect, time itself and the body’s self-healing ability, or auto-suggestion.
Additionally, for the Christian, is the occult factor to be considered.
Supporters also claim that there are no risks from homeopathic treatment.
They say that the ultra dilute remedies are safer and cheaper than most
prescription drugs. First, it has been shown that several homeopathic remedies
for asthma actually were contaminated with large amounts of artificial
steroids. Second, some remedies do contain measurable amounts of the critical
substance. If a patient takes 4 tablets daily of mercury D4, he would receive
a potentially toxic dose. And a dose of D6 cadmium exceeds the safe limits.
Finally, a D6 or less dose of Aristolochia contains significant amounts
of this cancer-causing herb.
Therefore we cannot easily and quickly claim that homeopathic remedies are always safe. There is an additional risk of seeking homeopathic treatment. If someone is ill and requires immediate medical treatment, any delay could have serious consequences. These risks are present with all alternative medical care.
Where should we draw the proverbial ‘line’ either to take a homoeopathic
remedy, or not ? It would be naïve for one to expect a clear response
from those who give homeopathic treatment. Obviously this is a question
of conscience everyone will have to answer for himself after reading this
Most homoeopathic practitioners want nothing else than soft medicine. The foundations and the effects of these remedies are dubious to say the least. It should not be too difficult to do without homoeopathy. There are many herbal remedies which are, without unnecessary dilution, at least as effective in exerting their natural healing power free of undesired side effects.
However, the thinking of many runs so deep in the ruts of homoeopathic reasoning that they are no longer able of critically evaluating these disturbing facts.
1. A set of arguments, ones that were made by a Catholic homoeopathic doctor recently in a Catholic fortnightly [in response to the Vatican Document and also probably to my earlier write-up], who is ‘alarmed by… remarks’ that ‘homoeopathy has recently been labelled by some as an evil therapy, occult practice, primitive science and so on’ , is that ‘all healings are the handiwork of God’, that ‘homoeopathy is a 200-year time-tested healing art and science’, that ‘the origin of the vital force is the Holy Spirit who is God’, and that the vital energy is the energy of ‘God the Creator… flowing through sun and moon,… animal and human bodies’.
She claims that ‘each substance, whether animate or inanimate, possesses this energy by virtue of motion of its atomic particles,’ that ‘this energy can easily be recorded by modern instruments’ and that ‘the homoeopathic remedy resonates with this energy’.
Scientific tests are objective. When performed under the same conditions, they follow certain physical laws and produce the same specific results. Homoeopathy is subjective, and does not, as science confirms. Any honest homoeopath will admit to that. In contrast to the prevailing medicine of his day which treated only the disease, Hahnemann sought to treat a person holistically. Homoeopaths enquire into the social, emotional and spiritual life of a patient before deciding their course of action.
All healings are certainly NOT the handiwork of God.
These include psychic healings, healings by shamans and voodoo doctors, and those of alternative medicines like reiki and pranic healing that too are founded on the ‘vital energy’ life force principle.
If indeed there were such a thing as the ‘vital energy’ then it would certainly be recorded by 21st century medical instruments. But no such discovery has been documented. The doctor also will remember that after potencizing and dilution, there is not a molecule left of the original substance selected, and consequently no possibilty of using or detecting this non-existent energy .
More importantly, Hahnemann and fellow homoeopaths insist that it is a spiritual energy, not a material one, [a fact that the doctor conveniently ignores], which precludes the possibilty of quantification. And, in the Biblical revelation of man as a tripartite being, there is no evidence of any aspect of him, or creation, that is a spiritual energy.
Certainly, man is spirit, soul and body. But that spirit is not the energy that is manipulated for healing in New Age medicine, that was ‘divinely revealed’ to Hahnemann, and that forms the basis for his philosophies of homoeopathy as set forth in the Organon.
Since homoeopathy as a holistic health practice meets all the conditions treated in the referred Vatican Document, it qualifies as a New Age alternative therapy. In fact, it has been called the ‘flagship of holistic health deception among Christians’. When physicians use homeopathy, they actually offer their patients the philosophy and spirituality of the New Age Movement.
2. The writer also received the following questionnaire from a priest
sincerely seeking answers to common difficulties:
A. Is there any other reliable source from the medical field who has doubted or questioned the credibility and effectiveness of homeopathy ?
B. What about the doctors, who neither know about nor care for the founder, but have seen through experience that it benefits a lot of people ?
C. What about patients who, after having tried allopathy in vain, have turned finally to homeopathy and seen it works for them and been thankful to God for having brought them to something that has cured them ?
They will never ever know about its founder and New Age means nothing to them ?
As a concerned fellow Christian what will you say to them ?
Just because something ‘works’, it is not good enough reason for Christian acceptance.
Astrology, necromancy and divination WORK. Which is why God forbade their use, warning His people that there existed dark powers which they must distance themselves from.
“See to it that no one makes a prey of you by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the universe, and not according to Christ” [Col. 2:8]. Paul is teaching that humanistic thoughts and ideas are not a neutral as we like to imagine. There are spiritual forces at work behind the basic philosophical assumptions upon which man builds his society.
Ignorance, in all cases, is not bliss.
As Christians engaged in constant spiritual warfare, we are enjoined by Scripture to increase our knowledge and discern the signs of the times [Hosea 4:6; 1 Chron. 12:33]. Spiritual inquiry is a commendable thing.
It is the Vatican’s awareness of the subtlety of New Age philosophy and practice that resulted in its producing such a Document.
Hence the two significant words “now recognized’’ [n 1.3] in the first page of this write-up.
Healing may not be in God’s will for a person in a particular situation.
A friend of the writer failed to be relieved of a painful complaint after two visits to a popular retreat centre, but was healed when she submitted herself to pranic healing.
Psychic healing and dowsing have been around for longer than 200 years. Does that make them any less spiritually dangerous ? Longevity is not a guarantee of validity. Nor is the popular acceptance of something.
Colleges now offer post-graduate degree courses in homeopathy. Degrees in the ‘science’ of vedic astrology too will soon be on offer. Does that make it any more credible ? By and large doctors don’t like what they see as an absence of science, but it is much worse than that. As a holistic healing system, it offers treatments for everything from Aids to ‘examination funk’ to ‘fear that something might come out of a corner’. A short ode to homoeopathy in the 1998 Pioneer self-advertises its diverse ‘applications’:
“When food seems lumpy,
Bed seems bumpy,
Wife is grumpy,
Nerves are jumpy,
Give Nux Vom.”
John Hoenigburger introduced homoeopathy to India more than 150 years ago, but with 150 homoeopathic colleges and over 200, 000 practitioners, there is no national policy for homoeopathic remedies, or a standard guideline for manufacturing them. For users of homoeopathic remedies there is always the danger that comes from self-prescribing and where poisons are used, and from failing to take timely allopathic medical treatment in favour of homoeopathy, in cases that could turn out to be critical.
And, to answer the Reverend Father’s first question, hundreds of doctors
have, after research, concluded that homoeopathy is fundamentally
unscientific and is not a legitimate medical practice.
“The International WHO Centre for research of undesirable effects of drugs and medicine in Uppsalla, Sweden noticed cases of damaged health, some of them very seriously, after treatment with homoeopathy” says Zivy Pramen.
Says Fr. Pilar, “It is not correct to say that a rejection of homoeopathy
only happens due to a lack of knowledge. Scientifically founded criticism
comes from highly competent experts. Prof. Otto Prokop in his book Homoeopathie-
Was leistet sie wirklich ? quotes a whole list of such scientists.
One of the outstanding critics, Prof. Fritz Donner, was even a former homoeopath himself. We can hardly attribute his critical attitude to lack of competence.
A professor of pathology, Dr. Werner Dutz said, Homoeopathy is voodoo.
That is the only thing doctors can say about it.
As far as the philosophical aspect is concerned, it should be assessed by the priests, who should rack their brains about it, but it is not the task of the medical sciences to deal with this.”
After reading my earlier detailed analysis, several Catholic users of these ‘remedies’ informed me that they have discontinued taking them, while one doctor has given up the teaching and practice of homoeopathy.
I pray the same for this short version too.
The Christian, seeking to walk in the light and in obedience to his Lord, must not allow himself to be seduced by every brand of the ‘in’ philosophy and practice, especially when it comes to finding help for his body, the temple of the Holy Spirit (1 COR 6:19). That is why it is so important to examine the doctrinal origins and basis of Homoeopathy.
Homeopathy’s message to Western medicine is, to put it bluntly, ‘Everything
you know is wrong!’
“Christian and non-Christian alike may be drawn to homeopathy because of its emphasis on the body’s efforts to heal itself and its shunning of drugs and surgery. A few enthusiastic Christians argue that Hahnemann’s system is a gift from God,an answer to the medical establishment which they view as steeped in secular humanism. Despite many claims and alleged parallels to modern medical practices and phenomena, homeopathy is not a legitimate medical practice.
Until it has been categorically and scientifically proved that cure is rooted in a measurable physical reaction or change within the body, one must assume that the power behind homeopathy is spiritual and has side effects.
Need we say any more ?
Only that the Vatican is fully justified in warning Catholics against the New Age dangers of Homoeopathy by including a mention of it in the Document
This is a summarized release. Click here to download the complete document
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