Adventures in Homeopathy

      Homeopathy is one of todays best kept secrets when it comes to self-care and natural medicine. It’s been around for a few centuries and has been used by the most prominent of physicians. Its practice has always enjoyed wide popularity among those looking for safe and effective ways to treat illness as well as to improve their health. I first came upon Homeopathy in the early seventies when I lived in Boulder, Colorado, and was treated for Bronchitis, an illness I’ve had for most of my life.  I usually contracted bronchitis in the late fall or early winter season at least once every year since I was a child.  I always used antibiotics for treating it, but Dr. Tim Binder suggested another way.  He prescribed a remedy that surprisingly mellowed the usual symptoms to something more manageable.  For the following three years the intensity of my chronic bronchitis lessened and lessened until I finally got the “lesson”: like cures like.

      It’s been over thirty years since my last episode of bronchitis and since then the study and practice of Homeopathy has deepened my understanding of how the body works in alignment with the physical, emotional, mental and spiritual realms. In simple terms: whatever symptoms a substance may cause, the same substance in a diluted form can cure it. For example, Poison Oak (Rhus. Tox.), in a diluted form, can alleviate a similar rash that it causes on the skin. This is working with the law of similarity: like cures like.  Back in the 5th century BC, Hippocrates, the father of medicine, wrote that there were two methods of healing: one by ‘contraries’ and the other by ‘similars’.  He is also quoted in every physician’s oath that the principle of healing is: “do no harm.”
Crossing borders and foreign lands with a mystical passport.

      There’s plenty of information about Homeopathy that is easily accessible to anyone so I’m not going to drag you over the coals with its theories, practice and science.  But I will say this: don’t be fooled by the ignorant professional who has never bothered to study homeopathy but feels authoritative in saying that it is not a real science or that it’s just a placebo.  Even to this day there is no cure for such an individual.  Over centuries of provings and double blind studies Homeopathy meets every criteria that Science demands.  If it really were a placebo, why does it work so well with animals and infants?  Go figure.

       America is a harder nut to crack in the acceptance of Homeopathy as a mainstream medicine simply because there’s no real money to be made in the production of remedies. If one travels through England, most of Europe and India, Homeopathy has a very respectable place.  I remember when arriving in New Delhi, India, one of the inspectors at the airport started searching my carry-on bag and found a homeopathic travel kit.  He opened the kit and big smile came across his face.  He asked if I was a Homeopathic physician and I answered yes.  He put his hands in prayer position and bowed to me and said, “That is good, that is good”, then without inspecting any other bag, he let me pass through the gates.  Needless to say I felt like a dignitary but soon after, the vastness and great wealth and beauty of the land and people along the way, soon put me in the right perspective of a very young soul.  There was also a period in my life when I lived in a little fishing village in Mexico and treated the villagers with homeopathy and herbs.  After about a year, I returned to the States via Los Angeles.  As I passed through the Mexican border, once again, my remedies were inspected. They didn’t seem to know about Homeopathy so I began to explain some of my experiences with my broken Spanish about treating villagers near Puerto Vallarta, and they let me pass without opening a single bag.  Of course, those were the days when the eyes were still connected to the heart and reading people was more humane and trusting.  I wonder if we will ever rise again to meet those standards.

Traveling with musicians
      When I traveled on the road with John Denver, I carried a homeopathic kit containing 100 remedies.  It covered a lot of ground and I became very creative in using them.  On the fast lane with musicians, management and the crew that accompanied them, I was the designated health practitioner. We were a 40 person entourage touring in a four propeller DC 10 across the USA and Canada. I administered homeopathic remedies for most symptoms and emergencies that came along.  Some of the common complaints and remedies that had good results were:  Gelsemium for stage fright, exhaustion and worries about the future. (I must add here that John never suffered from stage fright but I have encountered many performers along the way that confided that particular fear.) Arnica for jet-lag, any kind of shock, bad news, bruises, accidents etc., Calendula for bleeding, post and pre dental visits, Rhus Tox. for bad chiropractic adjustments, joint complaints that have a “rusty hinge” quality to it, as well as skin rashes that look like poison ivy. Apis for insect bites, inflammations, rashes that look like hives etc. and probably the most used one: Nux Vomica for overindulgence, excess, headaches, migraines, hangovers etc…These are just a few of the remedies used and at times the results were quite miraculous.  The above remedies mentioned have much broader and deeper applications than the description given.  Over time a practitioner gets very familiar with key remedies by cross referencing with a Homeopathic Materia Medica and Repertory.  These books represent the documented history of Homeopathic symptoms and remedies and how they mirror each other. To practice Homeopathy effectively the Materia Medica and Repertory are a necessary and essential study. My personal favorite Materia Medica and Repertory are written by Dr. Robin Murphy. I find his version to be very user friendly and educational.  Throughout the nineteen eighties, I practiced Homeopathy at the first aid level and eventually began to see the deeper layers of cause and effect in healing.

      I also used Homeopathy when I worked with the Indiana Pacers, a professional basketball team.  By this time, which was in 1993-94 season, I was seasoned with the understanding of what my remedies did in a first aid situation. Ankle sprains, knee injuries, back injuries, insecurities, and any challenge that comes with the athletic turf, homeopathy was a good and effective natural medicine.  There were no side effects and the worst that would happen by giving the wrong remedy was “nothing.”  I know that in today’s world of high level competitive sports, tons of money could be saved if trainers would use homeopathy. Any of the remedies I have used in a symptomatic way can be purchased over the counter in any health food store across the country.  It’s usually in a section of the store near vitamins and herbs, all conveniently encased in alphabetical order. Since I live in Scarborough, Maine, I often send my clients to Lois’ Natural for a remedy, that is, if the complaint is symptomatic.  I figure if they go there, they will also be exposed to the potential pharmacy at their disposal that can “do no harm”.  Wherever you live, I’m sure you can find a health food store in your neighborhood that carries homeopathic remedies. Near that casing you will also find patented homeopathic formulas that use multiple remedies referred to for the given symptom such as:  Traumeel for sports injuries, Bioplasma that contains 12 critical cell salts for the body, Arnica gel, and formulations for skin rashes, flu symptoms, warts and many more. Personally I think every household should have a remedy kit available for unforeseen situations.  A good source for a remedy kit is from my dear friend Shelley Keneipp.  Visit her website at: homeopathyforthechild.com She has a number of kits in different categories that may fit your family’s needs.

  Last but not least

      What I described above is only the surface layer to the power of homeopathic medicine.  There is a growing and vast network of truly gifted Homeopathic physicians today across the country and around the world that address all stages of illness by restoring the principle of the Vital Force.  The opportunity to deepen one’s knowledge base is ongoing.  One only has to take the first step and begin.  First Aid and its many applications will empower the lay person to make more conscious decisions about problems that can be alleviated naturally.  Common colds, flu’s, headaches, teething, congestion, earaches, bruises, inflammations, cuts, sprains, etc. are all in the realm of natural self-care.

      Homeopathy is also a great tool for Psychiatrists, Psychotherapists, Chiropractors, Osteopaths, Physical Therapists, Social workers, etc., who have an ability to perceive into the personality from a deeper level. To activate the Vital Force in order to restore balance physically, mentally and spiritually is the true art form for the practicing Homeopath.  Like I said in the beginning, Homeopathy is one of todays best kept secrets for self-care and natural medicine.  In these times of insanity when pharmaceutical companies display their drugs on television followed by warnings that may even cause death, it may be a good time to look into an alternative/complimentary and integrative health system.
      As a therapist, I will often compliment my practice with Homeopathy for situations that will assist the body/mind continuum with the restoration and maintenance of natural health and balance.  I am often available for talks on this subject.

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