Homoeopathy has seen many changes through the years from its conception in 1796 by its founder Dr. Samuel Hahnemann to its current modifications and various sub fields of belief emerging from it. Each of the branches have their own set of beliefs and its undisputed that for many, Homoeopathy becomes a way of life rather than just a system of medicine.
Criticism of Homoeopathy:
Despite having received continual criticism since its inception, Homoeopathy is one of the oldest standing Complimentary Alternative System of Medicine. It continues to emerge and grow in many parts of the world despite being shunned in the past in countries like USA which first saw a rise and then a persecution of the already developed system.
The fact is, criticism to Homoeopathy and its Practitioners is not new, as soon as one decides to practice it, they are forced to accept the uninvited arguments and suggestions to change their mind. It is of great wonder how this system of medicine could even survive all these years if it were just witch craft as suggested by many. Some people even argue that it just works as a Placebo and helps the body repair itself just because the mind wants to believe that the medicine will help it. This is of course open to much debate as diseases such as arthritis, sinusitis, IBS and allergies do not just vanish due to home remedies and other potential placebos.
Points of Conflict:
- The major point of conflict perhaps lies in the fact that the widely accepted mode of treatment of Allopathy believes in there being an external factor that causes a disease such as a bacterium, a virus, a gene or any stimulus for that matter while the concept of Homeopathy gives more weightage to the human body and its idiosyncrasies in the way one reacts to these stimuli.
- The second point of conflict is from a Pharmaceutical point of view- while Allopathy believes in a medicine being advised specific to the disease, Homoeopathy believes in medicine being specific to the patient. This is why many critics of Homeopathy leverage on the fact that there are no specific homeopathy medicines to cure a disease and announce that the entire system is hence redundant.
- The third conflict lies in the fact that one doesn’t turn to Homeopathy in cases of emergencies. This conflict is used by critics to pull apart other Complimentary systems as well- by saying that the Practitioners of these Sciences themselves do not consume their own medicines and wait for magical results in cases of Emergencies. The fact is that most Emergency conditions require surgical intervention and Homoeopathy or any other system of medicine has never been against that. In fact, the medical degrees in India of Homoeopathy and Allopathy are- Bachelors in Homoeopathic Medicine and Surgery (BHMS) and Bachelors in Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery (BAMS) respectively. But, while the degrees may be called this, the Surgical part of the education is limited to text books and observation during internships at Allopathic hospitals rather than a real opportunity to practice.
To conclude, it is fair to say that if a field of Medicine can survive centuries of criticism and tirade, it surely has enough potential to develop to be of a greater magnitude. Rather than the persecution if given an opportunity to grow in both practice and research, it can become a system of precious worth for Healthcare. The Covid-19 pandemic displayed the unpreparedness of multiple nations to handle such a grave disease, an alternative system such as Homoeopathy can prove to be of merit in such times in terms of both skilled man power as well as pharmaceutical development to fight against such diseases.
A comprehensive approach in the field of Medicine is the need of the hour, where the different groups can collaborate towards a new and evolved system that picks the benefits of all the systems to focus on healthy people rather than questioning how they got healthy. To be able to act to help and to cure, as mentioned by the Master himself in the very first aphorism of The Organon of Medicine- the Physicians highest and only mission is to cure the sick and not speculate on theories unnecessarily.