Homeopathy is based on the natural principle of similar which means ‘like to be treated by likes’. This has been suggested by different people in different parts of the world at different points of time. This is similar to what Ayurveda says -“zahar se zahar ko maarana” (Hindi), which means ‘poison to be treated by poison’.
In Homeopathy for every disease, a medicine is given which can produce a similar symptom of disease to get quick, gentle, long lasting restoration of health in harmless way by easily comprehensible principles based on nature.
Homeopathy was founded by Dr. Samuel Hahnemann in 1796.
Hippocrates, father of Allopathy says, “By the application of precisely what causes the illness, will patient recover again from the illness”.
In another example, he explains it as, ‘vomiting can be made to cease by emetics (Medicine which causes vomiting) and coughing is made to disappear by same means’. Similarly different people like Galen (Rome), Paracelsus, Cullen (Britain) had also suggested the law of similar.
So, Hahnemann was not the first one to make note of nature’s principle of similar – ‘likes to be treated by likes’ but he was the first one to experiment on the principle of similar.
He established and developed it further for the use in clinical practice which we call homoeopathy today.
In the year of 1790, Dr. Hahnemann was translating a medical article written by renowned British physician Dr. Cullen. Dr. Cullen had stated that ‘extract of cinchona bark (which was very commonly used for treatment of intermittent and malaria like fever), if taken by healthy man, has potential to produce similar intermittent fever like symptoms’.
Being surprised and excited by this, Dr. Hahnemann experimented on himself by taking cinchona bark extract. As stated, he also developed fever and chills. The symptoms produced by it disappeared when he discontinued it. This cinchona bark experiment to Hahnemann had the same impact like the falling apple to Newton. He then went on experimenting on himself and others, different known medicinal substances available in his time and reconfirmed the earlier findings.
Being a doctor by profession he also used those medicines in his clinical practice. After thorough experimentation, Hahnemann declared in the year 1796 a new principle of treating mankind (The healing art) –the law of similar in an absolutely new and revolutionary way. This new principle which was declared by him as ‘Similia Similibus Curentur’ – a German phrase, which means ‘like to be treated by likes’. This nature’s law is the basic law of treatment in Homeopathy and its philosophy.
Just like law of gravity, which has been used very effectively to develop satellites, space crafts to go out of the field of earth’s gravity and come back on earth,similarly,law of similar has been experimented for long number of years and used for development of methods and modes of treatment in Homeopathy. It says that, ‘diseases are to be cured with medicines which produce similar symptoms.
It is a systematic method through which crude drug substances are broken down to minutest particle possible of size/scale of 1/million or 1/billion and even smaller particles.
This is achieved through the simple process of diluting the drug substance with diluting agents like water, ethyl alcohol (medicinal alcohol) and sugar of milk and then triturating (grinding) or shaking of the drug substance. This process is known as potentization as through which silent/hidden medicinal power, which was inert or impotent in crude form of the drug substance is set free.
Homoeopathic medicines prepared in this manner are for the use according to principle of symptom similarity – likes to be treated by likes.
These medicines were known in earlier days as medicines with ‘dynamic’ power. Recently this ‘Dynamic power’ has been known to science. It is a proved scientific fact that, Homeopathic medicines are of minutest possible molecule like ‘Nano particles’ and having small frequency radio waves.
Toxic, venomous or poisonous drug substances when processed according to Homeopathic pharmaceutical process of Potentization, becomes harmless and their curative medicinal power is enhanced. Similarly entirely inert substances like silica, charcoal, common salt by the same process get developed into medicines with remarkable powers.
Major sources are from plants; flowers, fruits, roots or the whole plant and other secretions like gum. Minerals, organic substances, metals, gases, healthy and diseased secretions, venomous products like the venom of snake, spider, honey bee and a long list of substances are used to prepare medicines.
Medicines are the difference between man’s life and death, health and disease. So, their power (effect) must be known thoroughly. They must be tested before being used as medicines. A thumb rule in Homeopathy – before any medicine can be used for the purpose of treatment, curative power (ability to cure) of that drug substance must be known. A Drug substance before being introduced is thoroughly tested on healthy human beings. Therefore, we know their effect on body and mind sensations as well.
Homeopathically powered (potentized) drug when given to healthy person will excite disease like symptoms (artificial diseases) characteristic to it. These artificial disease and symptoms will cease to exist once it is discontinued.
The alteration in health of healthy person’s body and mind produced by these potentized medicines is observed and similarly large number of medicines are known in detail for the cure of diseases. Effect of each of this drug is noted in complete detail and in schematic order. Thus Materia medica – a voluminous book having large collection of real, pure and reliable signs and symptoms collected after testing on healthy human beings, is made available for the reference.
Effects of medicines, adverse effects, duration of action of medicines, their antidotes all are well confirmed and proved on healthy human being and only then used as main tool of treatment. This remains the unique and revolutionary feature of Homoeopathy.
Dr. Samuel Hahnemann was the first in history of mankind to do this experiment and opened up this path of testing the curative power of medicines, “To learn the curing capacity and power of each medicine it is necessary to test this medicine on healthy person to learn its disease producing power”.
Drug = a substance under consideration to be proved as medicine.
Medicine = a proved drug and power is known after testing.