So said Winston Churchill…
And I wish to suggest that his sentiment has some relevance in the practice of medicine.
It highlights two different philosophies, both of which are valid.
Take a look at any text on modern drug classes and you can clearly see that modern western medicine is on a war footing. There are anti-biotics; anti-depressants; anti-fungals; anti-inflammatories; anti-virals…just as we have anti-aircraft; anti-tank; anti-personnel and so on.
Clearly modern pharmaceuticals are effective, but they are not always curative in the long term. There is quite a queue in my local chemist for repeat prescriptions ..
Most modern drugs have not been around that long, the first antibiotics only appeared in the 1930s. We tend to forget that.
Yet mankind has suffered sickness, for thousands of years…and been healed. Naturopathic cures were once the norm..at least for those of some means.
Let’s be honest, symptoms are inconvenient at best, and often worse – so a magic bullet has much in its favour – especially in an impatient age.
Trouble is “the enemy” may have a valid point; perhaps a little “jaw jaw” might bring about a longer lasting peace?
Of course to “jaw jaw” you have to understand the language.
Symptoms are the body’s language … but without an interpreter it can be a bit like “double dutch”.
Easier then to shoot first, and ask questions later! But what if the “enemy” regroups and shoots back. An uneasy truce might be the best result. Tit for tat..unless you are willing to “jaw jaw”.
Homeopathy is “jaw jaw” medicine. It is guided by the Law of Similars – often simplified to “like cures like”.
The general philosophy in homeopathy, naturopathy, and other traditional / complementary therapies is that the body tells you what it needs to cure itself.
Respond in kind and and hopefully harmony returns. Swords into ploughshares…
Homeopathically “jaw jaw” means finding the medicine that best imitates the symptom picture.
Here is a simple example:
Gelsemium, homeopathically prepared from a plant of the same name, has particular characteristics that come from “proving” the medicine on healthy people, knowledge of its herbal properties, clinical experience and so on.
Students of homeopathy learn the phrase “droopy, drowsy and dull”, as the Gelsemium symptoms are just that:
It is one of a number of medicines that have helped Covid patients – but ONLY if their symptom picture matches.
*Interestingly it is said that, Gelsemium – presumably in herbal form – was once used to instil fearlessness in soldiers . In truth this “courage” was more likely to be loss of fear through instilled apathy (what do I care if I live or die…)