Homeopathy is one of the most puzzling and controversial healing systems in use today. Homeopathy is extremely popular with remedies found in local pharmacies and advertised on television. Homeopathy is even more popular in Europe with thousands of satisfied users. Many users are aware of homeopathy's effectiveness but there is relatively little information about how it actually works.
Homeopathic remedies contain a variety of substances that are extremely diluted. Some of these substances are actually harmful or poisonous to the body in larger doses but the dilution renders them harmless. A remedy labeled 1C consists of one drop of active substance mixed with 100 drops of water or alcohol. If one drop of this substance is again diluted with another 100 drops of water then the remedy is labeled 2C. To give you some perspective as to how dilute these substances are, a 3C remedy is diluted to one part in one million.
Remedies with dilutions greater than 12C are so dilute that it is unlikely the remedy contains even a single molecule of the active substance. After each step in the dilution process the remedy is shaken vigorously in a technique called succussion. The idea is that the succussion helps to imprint the essence of the substance on the water or alcohol. The remedies are generally available in liquid form with the active substance diluted with alcohol or a small pill that contains a drop of the diluted substance. Patients are told to place a drop of the liquid or pill on the tongue and let it dissolve.
Homeopaths choose remedies based on how people experience illness. Experiences are not limited to symptoms but encompass emotions as well. Homeopaths develop a very detailed analysis of the illness' effects on the body. They then search through thousands of remedies to find one that produces the same effects as the disease. The remedy works by allowing the body to strengthen its resources against the illness. This is somewhat like a vaccine. The vaccine is strong enough to stimulate the immune system but not strong enough to produce the disease. The homeopathic remedy is also strong enough to stimulate the body but because it is so dilute it is essentially harmless.
What is truly fascinating is the idea that the homeopathic remedy can essentially contain nothing more than water and yet still elicit a powerful healing effect on the body. One explanation of homeopathy is that it does not work on the physical body, but on the life force. Homeopaths suggest that remedies somehow work to heal the body on the vital plane. This healing then translates to the physical body. It may be that there is some sort of exchange of information between the substance and the body. The question is just where does this information reside?
Since the active substance was initially put into water and shaken perhaps the water acts as an information source. One possible explanation exists in a theory that states that water can form clusters of information. In other words the weak molecular bonds that hold water molecules together can somehow hold information. In a series of experiments performed by researcher Louis Rey water was indeed shown to create complex patterns that could carry information. The patterns also survived the succussion procedure used to produce homeopathic remedies. (1)
Water may somehow contain information about the original substance and communicates this information to the body to elicit the healing effects of homeopathy. It may be that the homeopathic remedy may even produce an informational field that interferes with the body's own informational field. This would explain the popular procedure of using muscle testing to determine the correct remedy. In muscle testing a remedy is held close to a subject while the subject attempts to contract a muscle. A strong muscle indicates the correct remedy.
If homeopathic remedies somehow communicate information to the body then other healing substances such as herbals, vitamins and minerals may also work this way. This opens up a whole new way to look at healing in terms of exchanges of information.
1. Rey S., Singh U. P., Singh A. K. X-ray determination of magnetically treated liquid water structures. Electr Magnetobio 14(1):23-30.