Complete Homeopathy Handbook

Taal
English
Type
Paperback
Uitgever
St. Martin's Press
Author(s) Castro
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This alphabetically arranged guide offers homeopathic remedies for everyday health problems, describes ten case studies, and discusses the dos and don'ts to follow when treating an illness
Meer informatie
ISBN312063202
AuteurCastro
TypePaperback
TaalEnglish
Publicatiedatum1991-12
Pagina's256
UitgeverSt. Martin's Press
Recensie

This book review is reprinted from The Homoeopath with permission from Nick Churchill of The Society of Homoeopaths.

reviewed by Denis MacEoin

Dr Denis MacEoin is an academic and author, and vice- chairman of Friends of Homoeopathy.

The writing of popular guides to homoeopathic practice has a long and respectable history since the appearance of Hering's The Homoeopathist or Domestic Physician in 1835 or, nearer home, the Homoeopathic Domestic Physician by Pulte, Epps and Epps (London, 1857). In this century, the increased professionalization of medicine and the ready availability of treatment has led to widespread abandonment of self-help measures in industrialized countries. In recent years, however, more and more lay people have seen the value of self-reliance in times of acute illness, and in consequence a new generation of guides to homoeopathic home treatment has come onto the market. The man or woman in the street now faces the unenviable task of choosing which of many books available will be the one for the bathroom shelf.

Miranda Castro's book fits the job as well as any I have seen, and better than most. Her repertory and materia medica are comprehensive and usable ... much better than those in Panos & Heimlich's, Homeopathic Medicine at Home with the repertory filling an obvious gap in Cummings & Ullman's Everybody's Guide or Hammond's How to use Homoeopathy effectively. I was struck by the helpfulness of two sections near the end: 'Diseases You Can Treat Using This Book' and 'Sample Cases'.

The former makes it clear that this is a work of limited application, directing the patient to a professional homoeopath for all serious poor chronic conditions. Unfortunately, I fear that beginners will be drawn to Andrew Lockie's rather bigger book The Family Guide to Homeopathy (already very fairly reviewed in this journal), which has a bit on just about everything from schizophrenia to cancer. I know that Lockie does not expect his readers to treat such conditions (though he does include routine prescriptions for a whole range of chronic complaints); but he gives a rather false impression of just how much the non-practitioner can or should do. Castro gets this right, and any paperback edition of her book should emphasize this point in order to help potential readers decide. More is not always better.

If I have a general criticism, it is the use of drawings of plants (plus the odd squid or beetle) in the text and on the jacket. This may be the publisher's doing, but it should have been resisted. Apart from the age-old problem of confusing homoeopathy with herbalism, this also encourages people to think of remedies as somehow 'natural' and to see their value in that. It is my feeling (as a non-practitioner) that the ability to think homoeopathically (and thus to treat homoeopathically) begins to come once it is understood that what is in the bottle is not a natural, material substance to be used allopathically, but a highly artificial, potentized force which has therapeutic potential only when it fits as complete a symptom pattern as possible. On the principle that a picture is worth a thousand words, no amount of explanation could undo the image conjured up by the very material offerings of Mother Nature that pop up every few pages.

Minor niggles: on pp 22-23 it is stated that Sulphur might come up for all symptoms of Flu, 'but isn't listed under Flu in the repertory'...a beginner would find this confusing. On p.32, 'Handcream' has become a symptom. On p.207, I think it would have been helpful to note the dangers of using Symphytum for broken bones where a pin is involved. I would like to have seen something on dental treatment, particularly tooth extraction, including a warning about the dangers of dry sockets following wisdom tooth extraction where treated with high potencies of Arnica (I did it and it was nightmarish).

The Homoeopath Vol.10 No.3 1990

Recensie

This book review is reprinted from The Homoeopath with permission from Nick Churchill of The Society of Homoeopaths.

reviewed by Denis MacEoin

Dr Denis MacEoin is an academic and author, and vice- chairman of Friends of Homoeopathy.

The writing of popular guides to homoeopathic practice has a long and respectable history since the appearance of Hering's The Homoeopathist or Domestic Physician in 1835 or, nearer home, the Homoeopathic Domestic Physician by Pulte, Epps and Epps (London, 1857). In this century, the increased professionalization of medicine and the ready availability of treatment has led to widespread abandonment of self-help measures in industrialized countries. In recent years, however, more and more lay people have seen the value of self-reliance in times of acute illness, and in consequence a new generation of guides to homoeopathic home treatment has come onto the market. The man or woman in the street now faces the unenviable task of choosing which of many books available will be the one for the bathroom shelf.

Miranda Castro's book fits the job as well as any I have seen, and better than most. Her repertory and materia medica are comprehensive and usable ... much better than those in Panos & Heimlich's, Homeopathic Medicine at Home with the repertory filling an obvious gap in Cummings & Ullman's Everybody's Guide or Hammond's How to use Homoeopathy effectively. I was struck by the helpfulness of two sections near the end: 'Diseases You Can Treat Using This Book' and 'Sample Cases'.

The former makes it clear that this is a work of limited application, directing the patient to a professional homoeopath for all serious poor chronic conditions. Unfortunately, I fear that beginners will be drawn to Andrew Lockie's rather bigger book The Family Guide to Homeopathy (already very fairly reviewed in this journal), which has a bit on just about everything from schizophrenia to cancer. I know that Lockie does not expect his readers to treat such conditions (though he does include routine prescriptions for a whole range of chronic complaints); but he gives a rather false impression of just how much the non-practitioner can or should do. Castro gets this right, and any paperback edition of her book should emphasize this point in order to help potential readers decide. More is not always better.

If I have a general criticism, it is the use of drawings of plants (plus the odd squid or beetle) in the text and on the jacket. This may be the publisher's doing, but it should have been resisted. Apart from the age-old problem of confusing homoeopathy with herbalism, this also encourages people to think of remedies as somehow 'natural' and to see their value in that. It is my feeling (as a non-practitioner) that the ability to think homoeopathically (and thus to treat homoeopathically) begins to come once it is understood that what is in the bottle is not a natural, material substance to be used allopathically, but a highly artificial, potentized force which has therapeutic potential only when it fits as complete a symptom pattern as possible. On the principle that a picture is worth a thousand words, no amount of explanation could undo the image conjured up by the very material offerings of Mother Nature that pop up every few pages.

Minor niggles: on pp 22-23 it is stated that Sulphur might come up for all symptoms of Flu, 'but isn't listed under Flu in the repertory'...a beginner would find this confusing. On p.32, 'Handcream' has become a symptom. On p.207, I think it would have been helpful to note the dangers of using Symphytum for broken bones where a pin is involved. I would like to have seen something on dental treatment, particularly tooth extraction, including a warning about the dangers of dry sockets following wisdom tooth extraction where treated with high potencies of Arnica (I did it and it was nightmarish).

The Homoeopath Vol.10 No.3 1990