Today, on World Homeopathy Day, we commemorate the legacy of Dr. Samuel Hahnemann whose discoveries gave a gift to humanity – Homeopathy! Homeopathy as we know today is a safe, gentle (no adverse side effects) and effective medium of treatment. So, how did it get discovered?
Imagine you’re in 19th Century Europe. Life is tough and the entire continent is ravaged by epidemics like malaria, scarlet fever, cholera and typhus. A brilliant student, Hahnemann goes on to become a doctor and studies contemporary medicine in the renaissance era Germany. However, very soon when an epidemic of malaria breaks out in Germany (1791), he discovers that it is of not much help to the patients.
What does a doctor in such an epidemic do when none of the existing medicines are offering much respite? Well, if you’re Hahnemann, you go out of your way studying the antimalarial properties of medicinal plants and experiment on yourself!
As Albert Einstein said, “Adversity introduces a man to himself” - Hahnemann discovered a highly successful result of the medicine which he experimented on himself - Cinchona bark (from which the Homeopathic remedy China is made) could develop in a healthy person (in this case Hahnemann himself), the same symptoms that it would cure in the sick person. A truly revolutionary concept that was unheard of in those days.
Today we refer to it as the First Law of Homeopathy: The Law of Similars, or "Like Cures Like." It says that ‘diseases are to be cured with medicines which produce similar symptoms. Please click here to read more about Homeopathy as explained by Dr. Vijay Shah, Dean - MissionToCure Clinic and Institute of Homeopathy.
Over a period of time, Hahnemann successfully cured the Typhus epidemic in the army of the French military leader - Napoleon Bonaparte. Napoleon himself was treated successfully with homeopathy for a case of phthiriasis. Homeopathy through Hahnemann also delivered fantastic results when a Cholera epidemic broke out in Russia in 1831.
Dr. Hahnemann died in 1843 but the seed of Homeopathy was planted and many dynamic doctors across Germany started building on the practical applications of Homeopathy. The books and treatises on remedies written by Hahnemann are still in active use today which is a testament to his genius and perseverance. He rose above sharp criticisms, persecution to develop a modern science in order to treat patients better.