An Interview on Homeopathy with Nathan Petersburg, N.D.
What is homeopathy?
The key idea of homeopathy is like cures like.
Some substances in appreciable doses are toxic or cause symptoms. Homeopathically, I look at a person who presents the same symptoms without taking the substances. With the idea of like cures like, a homeopathic remedy made from the substance stimulates the body to self-healing.
The practitioner’s role is to look for themes and patterns in the patient’s life, and match those with similar themes and patterns in the proving of the remedies.
For example, let’s consider Person A, who is anxious about health and money, often cold, comforted by warmth, and fastidious. These same symptoms are present in people who take appreciable doses of arsenic. The homeopathic remedy of the substance, Arsenicum, may stimulate the body of Person A to regain balance.
What remains of the original substance in a homeopathic remedy?
A chemical or energetic imprint of the original substance is left in the solute. Your body can identify and respond to that imprint. The more diluted that the substance is, the stronger the homeopathic effect (i.e. less is more).
Can you explain the concept of less is more?
This concept is being proved out more by nanophysics. It is the idea of secondary effects of medicine. Let me explain.
A primary effect of a medicine is when a drug or herb is given in a dosage that takes over the functions of a body.
A secondary effect is when a drug/herb/remedy is given in such a low dose that it only stimulates the body and makes it function on its own.
Effects of Homeopathy
What should I expect if a take a homeopathic remedy?
Symptoms can either quickly or slowly subside. A patient should find himself or herself responding and reacting to their environment more healthfully. His or her whole person becomes healthier.
There is also a thing called an aggravation. Symptoms, or symptoms from the past, can flair again. The flairs are less intense and of less duration than normal flairs or past symptoms. They signal healing and restoration.
Is it possible that there is a placebo effect?
Of course. But, there are also times that people will take remedies and things will change on levels that they did not expect.
Can you give an example of how you have seen homeopathy be effective?
One patient presented with a severe eczema flair (over a large portion of her body). I selected a remedy. Within five days, the flair was 90% better, without any other intervention.
Choosing a Remedy
What do you take into consideration when you prescribe a remedy?
I look at the complete person. For example: How does the patient present with their current symptoms? How do they respond and react to their environment today? How do they deal with conflict? How did they react in their childhood? What was important to them in their childhood, and now?
Is it safe to use at home?
Generally speaking, yes, in acute situations or short term. It is not always as effective as seeing a practitioner. It can be confusing, and then frustrating.
A practitioner would be able to see more and bigger symptoms (the whole person). In addition, they have a deeper understanding of some of the remedies.
History and Modern Use of Homeopathy
What are the origins of homeopathy?
Samuel Hahnemann, who lived in the 1700s, is considered the founder of homeopathy. By his teenage years he could speak more than 4 languages and was well read. Later, he even translated works from other languages into his own dialect.
How widely is homeopathy used today?
Very widely. Well over half the world uses it on a weekly basis. In India, there are entire hospitals devoted to homeopathy. There used to be full hospitals in Scotland. Doctors in France also use homeopathy. In Germany, all pharmacists and pharmacies have homeopathic remedies.
Can you overdose?
There is no such thing as a toxic or deadly overdose of a homeopathic remedy (as long as none of the substance is left in the remedy).
However, there can be side effects if a remedy is wrongly indicated or too strong of a potency is given to a person.