Homeopathy gets royal seal of approval

Prince Charles royal homeopathy

Prince Charles

Prince Charles and the Royals

In the article below, homeopathy is criticised because the remedies contain “nothing.” This is not correct so Colquhoun doesn’t understand his own objection to homeopathy. Sometimes the remedies contain nothing but not always. I’ve addressed this in the post, “Homeopathic remedies contain nothing but information”. You can also see from my post “Ssh, most medicines are homeopathic,” that homeopathy, the law of cure discovered by the great Dr Hahnemann that homeopathy is actually accepted and practised by mainstream medicine – even though they don’t realise it!

Prince Charles and Homeopathy

His sceptics say it is “witchcraft” and “nonsense”, but Prince Charles’s faith in the alternative medicine is unwavering.

Sarah Rainey says, “The Royal family has long been devoted to the practice of homeopathy – in fact, to this day, there is a court homeopath, a position that seems as anachronistic as the royal horologist or the master of the Queen’s music. The Queen’s father, George VI, was a firm convert to the cause, as was his father, George V.

The history of the Royals and homeopathy goes back to about 1844 when the Royal London Homeopathic Hospital was founded. In fact, many royals of Europe were treated by Hahnemann.” She continues,

Indeed, Her Majesty is not only devoted to homeopathy, which she also uses on her animals, but the broader spectrum of alternative medicine – and it is said that her avoidance of illness during her 60 years on the throne is due to supplementing her conventional medical regime with herbal remedies.

But it is Prince Charles, famously so in tune with nature that he talks to plants on his Highgrove estate, who is alternative medicine’s staunchest supporter among the Royals – and indeed one of its most enthusiastic advocates in the UK. The practice is, he told the World Health Assembly in Geneva in 2006, “rooted in ancient traditions that intuitively understood the need to maintain balance and harmony with our minds, bodies and the natural world”.

Sounds far more sensible than the reductionist, mechanical worldview we’ve cornered ourselves into! Rainey gives the following detailed overview of Charles’ relationship with holistic medicine:

“Though his interest in the subject dates back to his childhood, Charles’s public devotion to alternative medicine first became clear in an address to the British Medical Association in December 1982 on the 150th anniversary of its foundation. Charles, sitting in his study at Highgrove, was struggling for inspiration on what to say and wandered over to his bookshelf, where he picked up a tome about the 16th-century physician Paracelsus.

“After reading just a few pages, the ideas crystallised for what the medical profession described as a ‘seminal outburst’. ‘I have often thought that one of the less attractive traits of various professional bodies and institutions is the deeply ingrained suspicion and outright hostility which can exist towards anything unorthodox or unconventional,” he told guests. ‘I would suggest that the whole imposing edifice of modern medicine, for all its breathtaking successes, is like the celebrated Tower of Pisa, slightly off balance.’

“Charles’s faith in alternative medicine is grounded in the teachings of the Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung and German philosopher Kurt Hahn, which adhere to ancient healing processes emphasising the treatment of the patient as a whole. His speech prompted the BMA to set up an inquiry (which found, in 1986, no scientific proof that any homeopathic treatments worked), and cleaved an ideological rift between Charles and much of the medical profession that endures to this day.”

Actually, Jung knew nothing about homeopathy and when Dr Edward Whitmont mentioned it to him, Jung told Whitmont to investigate it further himself.

“Spurred on by letters from supporters, the Prince continued to promote his views, including the cause of homeopathy. He is said to have discussed the issue with successive health ministers (including Jeremy Hunt as recently as this summer), arguing for a register of practitioners of holistic medicine, and commissioning various studies in conjunction with the Society of Homeopaths.

“There have been setbacks, however. In 1993, the Prince set up the Foundation for Integrated Health, a charity that lobbied for homeopathy to be considered alongside mainstream medicine in hospitals. It argued that embracing such treatments would benefit patients and save money, cutting prescription drugs bills by up to 50 per cent. But in 2010, the charity closed (later admitting that allegations of fraud and the arrest of a former official were to blame) and reopened that same year under the banner of the College of Medicine, in which Charles is not overtly involved.

“Material about a range of herbal tinctures, sold under the Prince’s Duchy Originals brand, was taken offline after being labelled ‘misleading’ by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency in 2009.

“Charles’s sceptics, too, have become more outspoken. The BMA has described homeopathy as ‘witchcraft’ (link) and, earlier this year, the Government’s new chief scientific adviser, Sir Mark Walport, dismissed it as ‘nonsense’. A critical report from the Health Select Committee in 2010 raised questions over the effectiveness of alternative remedies.

“David Colquhoun, a pharmacologist at University College London, says the practice is ‘utter nonsense’. ‘Homeopathy remedies contain nothing whatsoever,’ he adds.

“Nevertheless, Charles’s support has, in no small part, led to a surge in the number of patients seeking such treatments. Nearly six million Britons now see complementary practitioners each year, and one in four would like access to be universally available on the NHS. (Currently, treatments are accessible only in some areas, including Bristol and Lothian.) Over-the-counter remedies, such as arnica cream, have seen a 24 per cent growth in sales in the past decade.

“Rachel Roberts, chief executive of the Homeopathy Research Institute, admits that she was once sceptical about holistic medicine but was won over by Charles’s endorsement of the practice. The royal physician is Dr Peter Fisher, clinical director at the Royal London Hospital for Integrated Medicine and an accredited homeopath.

“‘The Royal family have huge resources and access to everything medicine has to offer, yet they choose homeopathy,’ explains Roberts. ‘I thought, “Why would they use it if it doesn’t work?”‘

“She sees Charles as a revolutionary. ‘He’s outspoken about his beliefs and doesn’t appear to care that he’s going against the tide of opinion,’ she says. ‘He gives homeopathy a voice. Now we’re seeing a U-turn in how it is being received, and the rest of the world is catching up to where Prince Charles has been for decades.’

“Of course, for those who see alternative medicine – and particularly homeopathy – as bogus, Charles’s passion for it only undermines his credibility. And they will argue that it is by no means due to the practice that he – like his mother – has only excused himself from public duties due to illness on a handful of occasions.

“But, as the Prince approaches his 65th birthday in rude health, he will, no doubt, find his faith in alternative medicine stronger than ever.”

(See the full article by Sarah Rainey in the Daily Telegraph here)

Image: wikimedia

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