Homeopathy Self Improvement
The Controversy Regarding Homeopathy
'homeopathy self improvement'
This is the keyword combination that most likely brought you to this page.
However, unlike most (or perhaps all) of the other pages listed in search engines regarding this keyword combination, I'm NOT going to give you ANY impression that homeopathy is a science, because it's absolutely not.
In fact, I was hesitant about writing this article for this very reason, and also, while I know many intelligent and healthy people who practice and fully endorse homeopathy, I'm not so sure of its potential myself, for I have followed homeopathic diets in the past, but with no obvious way of knowing if these diets TRULY helped me.
Yes, the general diet prescribed by homeopaths is usually a healthy one (and is almost never therefore harmful to your health) so I can't say I'm against it; however, I'm not totally for it either because, while the field of self improvement is often not regarded as being very scientific either, at least the self improvement I discuss is based on psychology (unless I clearly state otherwise, which I sometimes do), and psychology itself - while sometimes regarded as being a soft science, as opposed to a hard science - is AT LEAST a science. 'Hard science', if in case you don't know it, refers to any field of study which is considered to be FULLY mainstream science. Should you wish to read more about the differences between hard and soft sciences, however, then click here. And to read more about psychology being specifically regarded by some as being a soft science, click here. Back to the main point at hand though...
Homeopathy is regarded as being a pseudoscience, technically, which gives it VERY LITTLE credibility because it hasn't proved itself by way of the scientific method (it hasn't been proved to work 'often enough' and in 'truly visible ways' and based on 'proven logical grounds', etc). And as you can see by this table, pseudosciences are quite unreliable. In a nutshell, the hierarchy of sciences can be viewed in this order...
* Mainstream sciences
* Protosciences (sciences that are on their way to BEING proved correct through use of the scientific method)
* Fringe sciences
Many practitioners and other advocates of homeopathy tend not to believe some of what Wikipedia says many times over, in many articles, about homeopathy, and one such article concerning the possible unreliability of 'Wikipedia on the matter of homeopathy' can be found here. That said, I don't agree with this article AT ALL, but for reasons that are too lengthy to get into at this point in time. You can make up your mind on the matter yourself, therefore, using your own logic, if you care to read the article or similar ones. I merely wished to present examples of both sides of the matter.
I'll now say, lastly on this section of the topic, that alternative medicines are often convenient for people to believe in, not necessarily because they seem as though they DEFINITELY work, but rather because it's appealing for us simply to believe that they MIGHT work.
That said, following is a list of reasons why one might BELIEVE alternative medicines (not only homeopathic medicines) work as they're preached to work when, in fact, they quite likely don't work that effectively or don't work at all (as taken from a Wikipedia entry on the topic)...
* Ignorance: We often don't know enough about medicines (and our bodies) to know any better when we are told how alternative medicines can work to help or heal us.
* The Placebo Effect: We might believe so much in an alternative medicine's 'power' that our own psychology helps improve our condition, thus making it SEEM like the alternative medicine is the cause for our becoming better, even if 'just slightly better'.
* The Regression Fallacy: Certain self-limiting conditions, such as warts and the common cold, almost always improve anyway, regardless of what medicines we use to heal or help the condition. We sometimes attribute this natural healing process to 'natural remedies' though.
* Conspiracy Theories: Certain mainstream medical groups are accused of being part of a huge conspiracy to suppress unconventional or natural therapies for the purpose of preserving their power and increasing their profits.
* Fear Of Side Effects: A great variety of pharmaceutical medications can have very distressing side effects, and many people fear surgery and its consequences, so they may shy away from these mainstream treatments as a result, instead choosing the alternative of alternative medicine.
* Cost: Some people simply cannot afford conventional treatment, so seek out a cheaper alternative, and alternative medicines are often the cheaper alternative.
* Desperation: People with a serious or terminal disease, having been told that their condition is 'untreatable', may react by seeking out alternative treatments through desperation, disregarding the lack of scientific proof for the effectiveness or even the existence of evidence that the method in question is ineffective or sometimes even dangerous.
* Pride: Once a person has endorsed or defended a cure (whether its a mainstream medication or not) or invested time and money in it, they may be reluctant to admit its ineffectiveness.
For a list on why homeopathy, specifically, may sometimes APPEAR to work, click here.
Homeopathy... Its History And Philosophy
Samuel Hahnemann, a German physician, created homeopathy, first publishing an article on the approach in 1796.
He created homeopathy in response to his belief that medicine caused as much harm as good. In his own time, this was indeed, quite often, the case. Today's medicines, however, are far superior to those of approximately two centuries ago.
To quote directly from Wikipedia on the matter of how homeopathy works (based on a premise called the 'law of similars')...
'The basic theory behind homeopathy is that a sick person can be healed using the rebound effect of a substance that produces the symptoms of the illness in a healthy person.'
I highly recommend you read the Wikipedia entry on homeopathy more fully to understand this principle because it's not worth my getting into here, as Wikipedia already has both a very readable detailed article and simple article on the subject.
Homeopathy... My Own Personal Experience
For a large part of my childhood life, I was treated, in part, with a homeopathic diet.
And because I was a healthy individual then, and am a healthy individual now, it's currently hard for me to say, therefore, if homeopathy had (and still has) anything to do with this. From all that I've read on the topic, however, it most likely doesn't. Sorry, mom and dad! Still love you guys and am in awe of everything you did right - sometimes intentionally, sometimes not. Back to the topic at hand though...
Part of why I doubt the validity of homeopathy is because, apart from the specific homeopathic diet I was exposed to, my family almost never ate desserts after meals, we feasted on meals that consisted largely of a large variety of healthy foods, we were (and still are) a very content family (so our mental well-being, I firmly believe, helped our physical well-being), and I've personally ALWAYS loved drinking water (yes, even before it became popularized by being sold in bottles), etc.
Contrary to everything I've just said, however, it's still often hard for me to dismiss homeopathy completely.
I attribute this, quite simply, to habit.
That said, I feel that so long as people never choose a homeopathic diet or homeopathic medicine TOTALLY in favour of mainstream medicines, it's not the end of the world. It MIGHT slow down the progress in fields of medicine that are PROVEN scientifically to have the desired effects they claim to have, so this would be unfortunate, but, to reiterate... not the end of the world.
For some people, their less-than-logical-beliefs bring more happiness to their lives than many of their logical beliefs, and I'm not entirely sure if this is a bad thing.
So while I cannot preach homeopathy to you, I can preach the benefit of being sceptical of all things. Therefore, below are two links. The first is a link to a website that will show you the upside of homeopathy, and the second is a link to a video that has nothing to do specifically with homeopathy, but rather it indirectly relates to the subject of homeopathy in that it discusses the nature of science and why it is so different to so many other ways of how people came to understand the universe mostly before the advent of science.
1) A 'homeopathy self improvement' web-page.
2) A TED video-clip on 'a new way to explain explanation'.
In closing, I would like to quote the hilarious Australian comedian Tim Minchin in a song he wrote, titled 'Storm':
"By definition (I begin) alternative medicine (I continue) has either NOT been proved to work, or been proved NOT to work. Do you know what they call alternative medicine that's been proved to work?... Medicine."
I'm not entirely sure why this made me 'fall on the floor with laughter', but it did.
While homeopathy (or any other alternative medicine) MIGHT not hurt you, being sceptical about everything won't hurt you either. So don't be afraid to doubt what you've been taught or have come to believe. Rather, be afraid to not doubt these things. This is not how people BECOME ignorant, this is how people REMAIN ignorant.
OTHER RECOMMENDED ARTICLES
* Self Improvement Gyming
* The Heart Of Self Improvement
* Psychology VS Self Improvement
* Finding Reliable Sources
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