Many people categorize homeopathy under holistic medicine or alternative medicine. In reality homeopathy is a vitalistic approach to wellness. Homeopathy was discovered by Dr. Samuel Hahnemann in the 1700’s. In his time, a substance called Cinchona bark was used to cure Malaria in Europe. The theory of the times was that its bitter properties were the reason for the cure. Dr. Hahnemann didn’t agree with that assessment. He wanted to understand why cinchona bark could help this ailment.
Dr. Hahnemann did something no one ever did before; he dosed himself with the bark even though he was in good health. What took place made history. Upon dosing himself he began to have symptoms of malaria even though he did not have malaria.
From this event he deduced a law which homeopaths call the Law of Similars. If a substance in large doses can cause a problem, that same substance in small diluted doses can cure you. Hahnemann knew that Cinchona Bark helped some patients with malarial symptoms; Hahnemann himself though was in good health yet after dosing himself he began having symptoms which were similar to the disease.
This event was called the first proving. It proved how a medicine performed on a well person. Over the next few hundred years homeopaths proved many substances.
The discovery of the law of similiars paved the way for sick people to get well, not just manage their disease. In fact, by using this principle homeopathy was able to treat many of the horrible epidemics that killed so many people in Europe.
Homeopathy is used by millions of people in the world from Europe, Asia, North America, South America to Africa. In fact, there are some countries which have incorporated Homeopathy into their national health care systems.
We live a wonderful technological age with the ability to diagnose and find problems in the human body. Yet most of our modern treatments are managed care. Pain killers, anti depressants, anti inflammatory etc. Homeopathy is designed to stimulate the body so the problem goes away.