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Offline StGeorge

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Homeopathy
« on: February 04, 2009, 10:55:36 AM »
Does homeopathy work?  Is homeopathy compatible with Orthodoxy?  I know that many Orthodox throughout the past centuries have used homeopathic medicine.  However, I've also read some Orthodox elders speak quite harshly of homeopathy.  Some see it as having an effect, but one that is more illusion than reality.  Others distrust it because some homeopaths say it works on the spiritual plane rather than merely the physical plane. 

What do you think? 

« Last Edit: February 04, 2009, 10:56:34 AM by StGeorge »

Offline Justin Kissel

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #1 on: February 04, 2009, 11:01:39 AM »
Quote
Does homeopathy work?

I guess it'd depend on what exactly was being done, but in general I would say no.
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Offline Ebor

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #2 on: February 05, 2009, 12:25:31 PM »
I've never read anything about Homeopathy working on a 'spiritual' level.  It was founded on what were thought to be scientific principles having to do with the bodies reaction to different substances.  I've used it for muscle strains and such and it seems to work find. But I also use regular medical practices as appropriate as well as the occasional herbal remedy such as chamomile or peppermint tea.

Ebor
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Offline Monk Vasyl

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #3 on: February 05, 2009, 12:41:11 PM »
Does homeopathy work?  Is homeopathy compatible with Orthodoxy?  I know that many Orthodox throughout the past centuries have used homeopathic medicine.  However, I've also read some Orthodox elders speak quite harshly of homeopathy.  Some see it as having an effect, but one that is more illusion than reality.  Others distrust it because some homeopaths say it works on the spiritual plane rather than merely the physical plane. 

What do you think? 



Everything I know about homeopathy it works on a physical level.  And from a personal experience, in most cases, it does work, on both humans and animals.  I had a dog who couldn't walk and someone gave me some homeopathy meds and she was able to walk, slowly, for an additional 3 months before she died of old age.  I have used The Bach Flower essences on both my dogs, who have developed "cabin fever, and have been fighting at least 6 times a night.  After giving them Rescue Remedy and Holly and Heather, they  are not fighting.  I have used it for headaches and arthritis and kidney stones and  I have saved tons of money.  But when there is something serious I rely on traditional medicine.  There is some New Age healing that is spiritual and should be avoid like the plague.
The unworthy hierodeacon, Vasyl

Offline Schultz

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #4 on: February 05, 2009, 12:59:53 PM »
I have some stuff for my sciatica that my wife bought me when we were visiting Berkeley Springs, WV. 

I take it most every night, and double up on the dosage when I'm having a flare up.  All I know is that it works in relieving the pain.  I don't know if it's a placebo effect or what, but that particular homeopathic remedy works for that very specific physical malady.

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Offline Elisha

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #5 on: February 05, 2009, 01:25:46 PM »
Arnica (comes in both gel and caplets) seems to work when I've used it for sore muscles/bruises in the past.

Offline GabrieltheCelt

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #6 on: February 05, 2009, 02:55:49 PM »
I was going to say that it (homeopathy) absolutely does work, but then I thought I'd better re-word this to say that in many cases, it has worked for myself as well as others.  For example, I take St. John's Wort (an over-the-counter, plant-based herb in capsule form) for depression.  For myself, the results were dramatic with a marked improvement.  Whenever I feel a cold coming on, I take Zicam (another over-the-counter natural drug) and again with great results.  If I remember correctly, it even says "Homeopathy" right on the bottle.  And, if I'm not mistaken, I think even accupuncture has been called homeopathy in certain circles.  Whether or not this is true, it's worked wonders for my mother's arthritis/joint pain.

I think where people can get themselves into trouble (healthwise), is when they rely solely on natural remedies in lieu of prescription meds.  In addition, because the word "natural" or "homeopathy" is on the bottle, people sometimes have the mistaken view that you cannot overdose or that these meds cannot hurt you.  From a personal example, when I began taking St. John's Wort (and I was even following the directions), I soon began experiencing a heightened sensitivity to bright lights.  I even began to experience migrain headaches.  Well, after a little more research, I discovered that, sure enough, too much St. John's Wort does in fact does increase sensitivity to light.  I decreased my intake and no more sensitivity to light.

So, I would say that yes, in many cases, homeopathy can and does work but, as a precaution, you should probably discuss the issue with your primary healthcare provider before you begin treating yourself.  In addition, do your homework.  Learn everything you can about the medication you want to try out.  And finally, I don't fully understand what 'spiritual' side-effects our holy elders were referring to, but if you're concerned, by all means, discuss it with your priest/spiritual father or mother.

I apologize if I came across as a Mr. Know-It-All because I surely don't.  But I do hope that my (and the others') personal examples were helpful.

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Offline stanley123

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #7 on: February 05, 2009, 03:30:57 PM »
Does homeopathy work?  Is homeopathy compatible with Orthodoxy?  I know that many Orthodox throughout the past centuries have used homeopathic medicine.  However, I've also read some Orthodox elders speak quite harshly of homeopathy.  Some see it as having an effect, but one that is more illusion than reality.  Others distrust it because some homeopaths say it works on the spiritual plane rather than merely the physical plane. 

What do you think? 


This is an interesting question. Let's suppose that you had cancer and a conventional doctor told you that you would die within a year unless you had radical surgery to remove the growth. But the surgery and the cutting would definitely cure it at least with a chance of 95%. But then the homeopathic advisor told you that this surgery, cutting, X-rays and subsequent drugs required were in the end harmful to the body and harmful to your health and that you would be a lot better off if you took 5 apricot kernels everyday at breakfast. Since the apricot kernels contained laetrile, your cancer would gradually go into remission and it would be a lot healthier for your body, according to the homeopath. And she provides you with testimonies of people who have been cured.  But then you read that the FDA says that laetrile is worthless in curing cancer. So which do you choose? Do you have a moral obligation to choose the conventional method of surgery or is it morally acceptable to choose the cure involving 5 apricot kernels per day?
« Last Edit: February 05, 2009, 03:32:55 PM by stanley123 »

Offline Justin Kissel

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #8 on: February 05, 2009, 04:21:08 PM »
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Do you have a moral obligation to choose the conventional method of surgery or is it morally acceptable to choose the cure involving 5 apricot kernels per day?

I'd answer the question in a roundabout way. If your kid had cancer, and you choose the homeopathic method over the conventional/orthodox treatment, and your kid died, I think you should be tried for murder.
« Last Edit: February 05, 2009, 04:21:44 PM by Asteriktos »
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Offline Monk Vasyl

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #9 on: February 05, 2009, 04:44:15 PM »
I had a friend, who had a brain tumor and while in the hospital kept relying heavily on homeopathic meds.  If a person has a serious medical problem, I personally would hope they would rely on traditional medicine, but that's my opinion.  None of us can make that decision, except the person who is suffering, or their legal guardian.
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Offline ytterbiumanalyst

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #10 on: February 06, 2009, 04:57:42 AM »
Does homeopathy work?
Does medicine work?
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Offline Ebor

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #11 on: February 06, 2009, 11:14:14 AM »
Arnica (comes in both gel and caplets) seems to work when I've used it for sore muscles/bruises in the past.

We have Arnica, Ruta Grav. and Rhus Tox. tablets in the house for various strains and bruises and the like, and a few other simple remedies for other things.  They're used in conjunction with appropriate treatment such as RICE- "Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation" and whatever else is useful in healing.

Homeopathy was founded by Samuel Hahnemann on what he thought were good scientific principles.  From what I've read it was in reaction to some of the medical practices of the day such as treating illnesses with emetics and bloodletting.  He also thought that fresh air and sunshine etc were good for helping people to get well.  I haven't seen anything that he thought the remedies were "spiritual". 

Quote
Posted by: ytterbiumanalyst
Quote
Does medicine work?

Some of it does, yes.  I started getting migraine headaches in college. It's a genetic condition from my mother and her father, apparently.  They would tend to last 3 days.  Some years ago when one of the kids was having a check-up I mentioned to the family doctor that I had a migraine that day so I.  He said that often patients don't tell him about that unless they happen to have one during a visit and gave me a prescription for "Imitrex"  That really does work!  Take a tablet when a migraine starts coming on and it's gone within 1-2 hours.  That is medicine that really works and I'm very glad to have it.

So I don't think that one has to use only one method of medical treatment.

Ebor
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Offline EofK

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #12 on: February 06, 2009, 11:49:34 AM »
To me, it makes sense to use the least amount of medication needed for most minor conditions.  If I have a paper cut, soap and water will do just fine.  Sometimes just a good cup of tea with honey and lemon will soothe a sore throat and there's nothing like some very spicy food to clear the sinuses.  I don't believe, though, in relying totally on homeopathics or just going out to get a supplement without speaking with a doctor first, especially if you already take medications or other supplements.  Sometimes even something as inocuous as herbal tea could have very negative effects if you take certain meds.  (For example, I like tea for cold symptoms, but when I was pregnant with Caitlin I had to be very careful about which kinds of herbal tea to drink because a few can cause things like cramping which can be very bad for the baby.)

My best advice is to consult with a physician first.   Point in case:  About 5 years ago, my brother was convinced that only homeopathic medicine was the way to go.  Then he contracted pneumonia and tried treating it with tea, vitamins, ear candling, etc. while his condition worsened to the point that he only had about 20-30% lung capacity in one lung and the other was completely filled with fluid.  Once we got him to finally go to a doctor, they did a chest xray and found thyroid cancer.  I don't think any amount of ear candling and detoxifying foot soaks are going to cure thyroid cancer.  (He's doing far better now -- still has a mass in his chest, but his thyroid was removed and they're treating him for non-Hodgkins lymphoma now.)
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Offline ytterbiumanalyst

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #13 on: February 06, 2009, 12:55:17 PM »
Quote
Posted by: ytterbiumanalyst
Quote
Does medicine work?

Some of it does, yes.
Exactly--one cannot ask a question as broad as this and expect an answer. Medicine works to treat only a few particular ailments (or only one, as the case may be), and so do homeopathic remedies. Does what work, to treat what, and why? are just a few questions that should be asked.

Whatever you do, however, should be done under the supervision of a medical professional. Plants have been used for medicine for centuries, and are the basis of many of our medicines today (though most modern medicines are synthesized or chemically created)--however, none should be taken lightly. Many are powerful, and in the right hands, for the right illness, they can be wonderful. In the wrong hands, you could end up overdosing or worse.
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Offline monkvasyl

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #14 on: February 06, 2009, 01:22:40 PM »
Don't know if this counts as homeopathy, but when I feel a cold comming on I use Airborne and it works wonders...I haven't had a cold or the flu in over 2 years now.
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Offline StGeorge

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #15 on: February 06, 2009, 01:24:34 PM »
Quote
Posted by: ytterbiumanalyst
Quote
Does medicine work?

Some of it does, yes.
Exactly--one cannot ask a question as broad as this and expect an answer. Medicine works to treat only a few particular ailments (or only one, as the case may be), and so do homeopathic remedies. Does what work, to treat what, and why? are just a few questions that should be asked.

Whatever you do, however, should be done under the supervision of a medical professional. Plants have been used for medicine for centuries, and are the basis of many of our medicines today (though most modern medicines are synthesized or chemically created)--however, none should be taken lightly. Many are powerful, and in the right hands, for the right illness, they can be wonderful. In the wrong hands, you could end up overdosing or worse.

Homeopathy operates differently than traditional herbal medicine.  Homeopathic remedies are something like 99.99999+ % percent water.  Nobody knows how homeopathy works.  Those who support homeopathy point to the structure of the water molecules rather than the composition of the remedy. 

I've tried herbal medicines, and some have worked better than others.     

« Last Edit: February 06, 2009, 01:25:30 PM by StGeorge »

Offline stanley123

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #16 on: February 06, 2009, 05:31:34 PM »
  Homeopathic remedies are something like 99.99999+ % percent water. 
Why not just drink more water when you feel ill?

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #17 on: February 06, 2009, 05:32:54 PM »
  Homeopathic remedies are something like 99.99999+ % percent water. 
Why not just drink more water when you feel ill?

That's not a bad idea, really.  It would certainly help the body rehydrate and flush out waste better.
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Offline StGeorge

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #18 on: February 06, 2009, 07:34:15 PM »
  Homeopathic remedies are something like 99.99999+ % percent water. 
Why not just drink more water when you feel ill?

I drink water daily to hydrate my body.  I've read somewhere that drinking lots of fluids helps with back problems, so that's the main reason I drink lots of water.  When I'm sick, I tend to drink Gatorade. 

From what I understand about homeopathy, it's not the composition but the structure of the remedy that is important. 
« Last Edit: February 06, 2009, 07:35:14 PM by StGeorge »

Offline StGeorge

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #19 on: February 06, 2009, 07:36:54 PM »
Don't know if this counts as homeopathy, but when I feel a cold comming on I use Airborne and it works wonders...I haven't had a cold or the flu in over 2 years now.

You know, I bought some of that and used it, but only after I got sick.  I didn't think it tasted that bad for medicine.  A friend recommended it when I was teaching. 

Offline username!

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #20 on: February 06, 2009, 07:50:09 PM »
I would always seek the advice of a doctor first.  A lot of times "homeopathic" medicines aren't prepared in the same manner as they were prepared in antiquity.  Ie, taking a pill instead of crushing and boiling the root.. 
Secondly a team of doctors armed with advanced technology from nuclear medicine to aspirin makes more sense to me than some backdoor shaman charging an arm and a leg for some herb that he/she claims will cure you.

Offline VirSpeluncaeOrthodoxae

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #21 on: February 07, 2009, 07:49:29 PM »
Yes and Yes.
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Offline Ebor

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #22 on: February 08, 2009, 11:11:26 PM »
some herb that he/she claims will cure you.

I quite agree that medical doctors are valuable.  I just wanted to point out that it is from some herbs that some medicines have come.  Willow bark tea helps with headaches and other pain because it has salicylates which are related to acetylsalicylic acid which is aka aspirin.  Foxglove is another herb which is also know as Digitalis which was used by herbalists to treat heart problems; such medicine is prescribed today for irregular heartbeat.  So it's not a case that herbs or other 'non-scientific' remedies didn't do anything. 

Ebor
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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #23 on: February 08, 2009, 11:33:42 PM »
Does homeopathy work?

I guess it'd depend on what exactly you mean by homoeopathy, but in general I would say yes.
« Last Edit: February 08, 2009, 11:35:31 PM by Nigula Qian Zishi »
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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #24 on: February 10, 2009, 04:25:38 PM »
Secondly a team of doctors armed with advanced technology from nuclear medicine to aspirin makes more sense to me than some backdoor shaman charging an arm and a leg for some herb that he/she claims will cure you.

Hmmm.  I've never seen or heard of (locally) anything resembling your caricature here, but I do know quite a few people who use homeopathic remedies routinely instead of drugs.  It's not "shamanism," but rather certain (often quite inexpensive) solutions to common problems (pain, mild fever, etc.) that are believed to cause less long-term damage to the body.  One can't just assume that people are being duped into homeopathy - many are making the conscious decision in light of the known and newly-discovered dangers posed by long-term exposure to certain drugs.
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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #25 on: February 10, 2009, 04:44:09 PM »
There is also a difference between homeopathy and herbalism which I believe is being blurred in this thread (and in general).

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Offline Ebor

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #26 on: February 10, 2009, 11:44:26 PM »
There is also a difference between homeopathy and herbalism which I believe is being blurred in this thread (and in general).



This is quite true.  They are separate fields of health treatment.  Herbalism should definitely not be taken without some study and basic information about different plants.  Many years ago I read an article in a Philadelphia (where I lived then) paper on the subject.  I have studied it some so when I read that a woman decided it was a better way to health and went into a herb shop to get some for tea, I had a bad feeling about it all.  She chose Senna, not knowing that it is used as a, pardon me, laxative.  So people should not just start pulling up plants and eating/drinking them. 

Ebor
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Offline StGeorge

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #27 on: February 11, 2009, 12:45:28 AM »
There is also a difference between homeopathy and herbalism which I believe is being blurred in this thread (and in general).



This is quite true.  They are separate fields of health treatment.  Herbalism should definitely not be taken without some study and basic information about different plants.  Many years ago I read an article in a Philadelphia (where I lived then) paper on the subject.  I have studied it some so when I read that a woman decided it was a better way to health and went into a herb shop to get some for tea, I had a bad feeling about it all.  She chose Senna, not knowing that it is used as a, pardon me, laxative.  So people should not just start pulling up plants and eating/drinking them. 

Ebor

So I shouldn't eat those red mushrooms in my backyard? 


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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #28 on: February 11, 2009, 10:16:21 AM »

[/quote]

So I shouldn't eat those red mushrooms in my backyard? 


[/quote]

No
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Offline Ebor

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #29 on: February 11, 2009, 12:04:52 PM »
So I shouldn't eat those red mushrooms in my backyard? 

heheheh  I'd have so say no, you shouldn't.  ;)

 Nor many other things that grow in the average yard.  Some years ago, our daughter was playing outside with her older brother being dinosaurs.  She said that she was a plant eater and took a couple of nips off of some of the herbage.  We had to have her point out which ones she'd bitten and then explain to her that humans grazing in the yard is a bad idea when there are daffodils and Rhododendrons and other 'unfriendly' plants.  Fortunately, she'd just bitten the daffodil leaf and not eaten any of it. 


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Offline StGeorge

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #30 on: February 12, 2009, 02:06:24 AM »
So I shouldn't eat those red mushrooms in my backyard? 

heheheh  I'd have so say no, you shouldn't.  ;)

 Nor many other things that grow in the average yard.  Some years ago, our daughter was playing outside with her older brother being dinosaurs.  She said that she was a plant eater and took a couple of nips off of some of the herbage.  We had to have her point out which ones she'd bitten and then explain to her that humans grazing in the yard is a bad idea when there are daffodils and Rhododendrons and other 'unfriendly' plants.  Fortunately, she'd just bitten the daffodil leaf and not eaten any of it. 




Yeah, I vaguely recall someone in middle school who got sent to the hospital on "Daffodil Day" for the same reason.

When in boy scouts, I remember one year in which two scouts dared to eat poison ivy and likewise went to the hospital. 

Offline Lily

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #31 on: February 12, 2009, 10:29:32 PM »
Homeopathy can work, but I've had better results with Traditional Chinese Medicine/Acupuncture, herbs, and massage therapy/reflexology. ( I've primarily tried homeopathy for allergies and found Flonase works better  ;)

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #32 on: February 13, 2009, 01:28:54 PM »
Homeopathy is utter crap. It completely fails to show any sort of benefit in controlled scientific testing, and the theoretic basis behind it (that water somehow "remembers" the effects of substances that are no longer present) is about as plausible as the theory behind classical medicine (that health is determined by the balance of humors that don't actually physically exist).

Treating a fever with classical medicine:

Remove about a pint of blood. Shave the head and apply a blister pack. Administer a moderate laxative, such as Epsom, to keep the bowels open.

Treating a fever with homeopathy:

Administer some water that once contained a minute amount of aconite, but due to extreme dilution, no longer contains any (or, at least, the chance of one receiving even one molecule of the aconite is mind-bogglingly small). A typical dilution is equivalent to mixing one mL of aconite in a cube of water 106 light-years to a side.

Treating a fever with modern medicine:

Take some Tylenol.

Offline monkvasyl

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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #33 on: February 13, 2009, 01:54:23 PM »
Homeopathy has helped me with my arthritis and kidney stones, better than traditional medicine.
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Re: Homeopathy
« Reply #34 on: February 13, 2009, 03:23:12 PM »
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Homeopathy has helped me with my arthritis and kidney stones, better than traditional medicine.

With all due respect, whether your conditions improved after you took homeopathic remedies has absolutely no bearing on whether homeopathy works or not. Any improvements in your conditions could have been caused by a multitude of factors -- changed diet, placebo effect, God's healing, or even just spontaneous improvement. What you would need is a randomized, double-blind study with a large group of people, one portion of which would be given water, and the other portion of which would be given water that a homeopath had shaken a lot. If there was a statistically significant difference in effects between the two groups, and this study could be replicated, then there would be a case for homeopathy. There have been many studies done on homeopathy -- they failed.

 My father experienced multiple bouts of kidney stones some years ago, but bought a new car around 1999 and has had no trouble with them since then. Now clearly, this is a case of correlation not being causation, but it's equally plausible (and there is just as much evidence supporting) that homeopathy stops kidney stones from forming.

Homeopathy has had almost 200 years to prove its case. It hasn't done so yet.