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Monday, 20 July 2015

Homeopathy

A German doctor, Samuel Hahnemann (April 10, 1755 – July 2, 1843), began practicing a new method of medicine, homeopathy in 1796. After testing various substances especially herbal remedies for a number of years, he had come to the conclusion that a drug, which produces symptoms of a particular illness in a healthy person, would cure a sick person who is suffering from the said affliction. This would only work, however if that drug was dispensed in particularly small doses.

Homeopathic preparation Rhus toxicodendron, derived from poison ivy.

The apothecaries saw little profit for them in Hahnemann's new medical technique, and refused to dispense the drugs. As a result the doctor was forced to give his medicines to his patients free of charge, which was illegal and he was accordingly prosecuted several times.

In 1810, Hahnemann published the principles of homeopathy in Organon der rationellen Heilkunst (Organon of Rational Medicine), which demonstrated his homeopathic methods to other doctors.

Hahnemann continued practicing and researching homeopathy for the rest of his life. He died in 1843 in Paris, aged 88, and is entombed in a mausoleum at Paris's Père Lachaise Cemetery.

A daguerrotype of Samuel Hahnemann in 1841

The homeopathist Edward Bach was convinced that the underlying causes of illnesses always reflected irregular emotional or mental conditions. He started searching for a new healing technique in 1930 and over the next six spring and summers he spent his time discovering and preparing new herbal remedies. By the time of his death in 1936, Bach had found remedies for these abnormal states in 38 different wild flowers. However the medical establishment were not convinced by his "quackery". 

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