Sceptics, Real Knowledge and Homeopathy
So many sceptics of homeopathy assume more than they actually know and base their comments on hearsay and caricature, regurgitating what they’ve heard before from biased and prejudiced commentators. Here’s my reply to a week of debate in The Irish Times which gave a more balanced airing for once: Homeopathy and Healthcare.
Sir, – in his letter commenting on homeopathy (Wednesday 6 March) Liam Murray says Homeopathy is effective because it provides hope, positive thinking and reassurance to the patient. This is of no benefit to a child screaming with constipation, reflux and painful dentition. Practising homeopathy for 30 years I can tell you such children have been greatly helped with homeopathic medicine and very quickly. I have continued in business because the parents of such children see the benefits and have been happy to send me new clients. – Yours, etc,
My unpublished reply to Matthew Carrigan’s letter is as follows:
Sir, – in his attempt to discredit Homeopathy (letters, Friday March 1), Matthew Carrigan (Smurfit School of Genetics, TCD) quotes the National Institutes of Health in the U.S. and almost all medical bodies in the world – even though his quote from Upton Sinclair applies to them also: “their wages depend upon it”.
The first “devastating” point against Homeopathy, he claims, is that there is little (implying there must be some!) evidence homeopathy is effective for any specific condition. Of course there isn’t – Homeopathy doesn’t treat specifics – never did and never will – and on rational and empirically verified grounds refutes the idea. Allopathic (conventional) doctors treat specifics which is one reason they cure nothing, not even the common cold, and admit as much.
His second point is that Homeopathy is at odds with several fundamental concepts of chemistry and physics. Sadly most scientists are not trained to think (although according to Prof Willie Reville in an Irish Times article, UCC are addressing this) otherwise Mr Carrigan would realise that Homeopathy is medicine and chemistry and physics are not, so cannot be compared.
If Homeopathy (which means Like Cures Like, a law of cure discovered by Dr Hahnemann) is wrong, why does medicine employ it: radiation causes cancer but is used to treat cancer; Epilem is used for epilepsy but causes it; Tamoxifen is used to treat cancer but causes it etc etc etc?
In the meantime I won’t hold my breath waiting for genetics to cure us. Quoting Prof Steve Jones, “It’s contribution to medicine over the last decade has been disappointing.”
Picture credit: WikiCommons