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Topic: Strange Rituals in the Fields
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Strange Rituals in the Fields by Sinnikal
Date: 22/11/2007 Time: 20:24:15
So, maintaining focus on the narrow limits of homeopathy.

This is a completely 'woo' philosophy based on the rambling thoughts of one Samuel Hahnemann who postulated:

'Like cures like', that is, a substance that in measureable quantity provokes a certain physiological response in human bodies will:

(Second postulate) relieve that certain symptom when administered (Third postulate) according to Hahnemann's 'Law of Infinitessimals', ie., a solution so dilute that the chance of ONE molecule remaining in the 'potion' is negligible will still be active, even when dropped onto a sugar pill.

Not only that, but even more ludicrously, the 'potion' becomes more powerful the more dilute it becomes

Not one of these postulations has any basis in the known 'proper' Laws of the Universe. To accept them is to overturn EVERYTHING we KNOW about the material world we live in. Time after time, trials have shown homeopathy NOT TO OBJECTIVELY WORK.

Infidel, you rant against the narrative authority of science to say that homeopathy is bunkum. But forget that homeopathy, of all things, is based on the authority of hahnemann in a way that science could never be.

It is also worth noting that homeopathy, like many 'alt' therapies promotes itself as a 'holistic' mechanism, yet relies on identifying symptoms and treating the individual with 'standardised' remedies.

It's not hard to see why homeopathy was popular 200 years ago, when 'allopathic' medicine was in its infancy, and based on much ignorance. Standard medical practice in those days was as likely to kill you as the disease it was attempting to treat.

At least homeopathy wasn't going to harm you in those times. Then, as now, the potions themselves weren't going to do anything at all

Medical science these days has moved on, doesn't have the answers to everything, whereas homeopathy has remained in the same state. Quackery of the first order. And dangerous too, if it was to content itself with being 'complementary', you know a nice chat with a friendly face, I wouldn't be so antipathetic. But it doesn't. It promotes itself as 'alternative', which can be exceedingly dangerous when it leads to a rejection of effective, conventional medicine. Which happens all too regularly with tragic consequences.

To my mind placebo treatment is on very dodgy ground as it relies on 'lying' to the patient, or at the very least undermining the principle of 'informed consent'. As we all know, placebo treatment doesn't work if the patient knows they are receiving placebo.

So homeopathy relies on the discredited work of Benveniste to come up with another ludicrous postulate of 'Water memory' to explain a non-existent phenomenon.

And you have the nerve to say that the scientific mindset is 'arrogant'

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Strange Rituals in the Fields by Carey Hunt
Date: 22/11/2007 Time: 20:30:39
Diverting briefly back to the original postings on this topic -

- did you see today's News Story about a school that has banned Father Christmas / Santa on the grounds that his 'traditional' red & white coat were originally Coca-Cola's icon? it is, of course, Brighton STEINER school....

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Strange Rituals in the Fields by Sinnikal
Date: 22/11/2007 Time: 20:51:42
Carey, interesting discussion going on over at Snopes.com right now about this.

It is of course a complete myth about the Coca-Cola company being responsible for Santa's traditional red outfit. White Rock Beverages were the first commercial organisation to dress Saint Nick up in red.

More evidence of ignorance abounding.

Which is why I wage my 'War on Stupid'

http://tinyurl.com/2fmfey

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Strange Rituals in the Fields by Infidel
Date: 22/11/2007 Time: 22:01:09
Sinnikal, you do obsess.

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Strange Rituals in the Fields by Sinnikal
Date: 22/11/2007 Time: 22:10:11
I know, people tell me it's one of my endearing qualities. Or should that be infuriating

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Strange Rituals in the Fields by Infidel
Date: 23/11/2007 Time: 18:23:21
Sinnikal:

'To my mind placebo treatment is on very dodgy ground as it relies on 'lying' to the patient, or at the very least undermining the principle of 'informed consent'. As we all know, placebo treatment doesn't work if the patient knows they are receiving placebo.'

How does placebo work ?

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Strange Rituals in the Fields by Infidel
Date: 23/11/2007 Time: 18:32:27
Sinnikal:

'It is also worth noting that homeopathy, like many 'alt' therapies promotes itself as a 'holistic' mechanism, yet relies on identifying symptoms and treating the individual with 'standardised' remedies.'

Well, its not just saying 'om' and all is sorted

I would say holistic 'approach' which is not inconsistent with symptomising. 'Conventional' science adopts an 'atomising' approach, lazily pigeon-holing 'phenomena', potentially missing connections.

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Strange Rituals in the Fields by Dani
Date: 23/11/2007 Time: 18:41:28
Busy getting out dictionary to look up all those words !

Then will sit under my crystal, drink my magic mixture and think myself over this cold virus.

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Strange Rituals in the Fields by Infidel
Date: 24/11/2007 Time: 15:01:16
Whatever gets you through the night

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Strange Rituals in the Fields by Dani
Date: 24/11/2007 Time: 15:07:35
Infidel,

I think it is working ! I feel much better this morning.

Maybe the alcohol in the bottle helped ?

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Strange Rituals in the Fields by Wozie
Date: 24/11/2007 Time: 21:59:26
Night Nurse capsules get rid of a cold and helpyou to sleep. Alternatively tins of Gold Label Barley Wine have the same effect.

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Strange Rituals in the Fields by Sinnikal
Date: 25/11/2007 Time: 06:26:29
It's all very well speculating on the existence of 'other' ways of thinking, or 'other' mechanisms of action. Evidence for, or of, them would be more helpful than just saying 'maybe' this is how it works.

Going back a bit, the germ theory of disease was somewhat controversial.

A bonus is that you can point out that homeopathy had decades more to prove itself than the germ theory of disease and was judged exactly the same way at exactly the same time, but failed. Before big-ph*rma existed.

Homeopathy is bunkum. It doesn't work any better than a placebo - that's been shown repeatedly and conclusively.

Homeopath comes on and says "it works!", skeptic says, "show me the clinical trials, show me something that indicates its effectiveness!"

Homeopath says "it's not like 'normal' medicine, so the trials are irrelevant! But I know it works!" Skeptic says, "wait a minute! Everything else is subject to trial, why not homeopathy?? If it can't be shown to make people better, then how do you know it works?"

Homeopath says "it works! I just know. I saw (2 or 5 or 10) people cured!" Skeptic says "how do you know they were cured? How do you even know something was wrong with them? You *don't* know if it works, because you haven't tested it properly!"

Homeopath says, "you're prejudiced (because you won't accept something without evidence, and because you won't accept a theory that actually doesn't make sense)!"

In effect, Homeopath says, "anecdote trumps clinical trials" even though the same person would likely reject the notion that automobile A has better gas mileage than automobile B without testing the claim.

To a lot of people, homeopathy reads like fuzzy, muddle-headed thinking demanding it be treated like a science. But it's not, because it (a) hasn't a theory to explain the results, and (b) the results don't seem to occur when subject to proper clinical trial.

Mere anecdote does not suffice to separate the sheep from the goats, because it has been shown that people are poor judges of the correlation between random processes. Many medical conditions fluctuate in severity, or even resolve altogether, over time. The body itself is by far the best doctor. If the patient believes they are undergoing a course of effective therapy, they will attribute improvements in their condition, but not deteriorations, to the therapy. This is known.

It seems to me that, for this reason, that if you want public money to be spent on homeopathy, the onus of proof of its effectiveness lies with the homeopaths. It is all one whether such proof is difficult or not. It is simply not reasonable to expect tax money to be spent on unproven treatments. Every other medical therapy which competes for funds has been proven to work - why should homeopathy be any different?

Let's just say that I'm with John Diamond on homeopathy: his book Snake Oil is excellent and should be required reading for anyone in the area of health, therapy or caring. In terms of clinical use, I'd give homeopathy a lower priority than, say, a nice bit of art for the foyer. I hope this doesn't come over as blind prejudice against homeopathy - it's an opinion based partly on research and also simple observable facts. Let me explain, let us assume that homeopathy is 100% correct, true and authentic.

In order for the homeopathy to work, a substance that causes a symptom must be diluted thirty or forty times over in pure water. I seem to remember reading that ideally, the level of dilution will be such that there would be one molecule of the substance in a bucket of water about the size of the solar system. The water retains a memory of this substance which my body then recognises and affects a cure. This seems unlikely to me, but as I said, I am assuming that homeopathy is absolutely true. What happens as I step out of my homeopath's office? Every breath I take, and every glass of water I drink contains a fair proportion of the periodic table. By the time I'm sat in a cafe having a fruit salad and green tea, I have already rendered all that careful dilution utterly pointless.

The point is, even if homeopathy worked, it wouldn't work in the real world. I'm all for therapies that feel nice - massage, reiki and a shot of pethidine for example - even if they don't have any impact on the illness. I'm rather less keen on things like faith healing, homeopathy (effectively the same thing) and the like, because it seems to have little to do with the welfare of the patient, and everything to do with the ego of the therapist.

Do have a skim through Snake Oil - it really is rather good.

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Strange Rituals in the Fields by Infidel
Date: 25/11/2007 Time: 12:49:17
Sinnikal:

'To a lot of people, homeopathy reads like fuzzy, muddle-headed thinking demanding it be treated like a science. '

Does it demand to be treated like science ? It doesn't provide a coherent, science-acceptable proof.

'. . . ideally, the level of dilution will be such that there would be one molecule of the substance in a bucket of water about the size of the solar system. '

Many aspects of the universe are non-linear.

'Every breath I take, and every glass of water I drink contains a fair proportion of the periodic table. . . . I have already rendered all that careful dilution utterly pointless.'

Subjective opinion. The various molecules/atoms exist in different combinations: micro, medio & macro in time and in space.

'I'd give homeopathy a lower priority than, say, a nice bit of art for the foyer.'

The latter has been subjected to (and passed) clinical trials for effectiveness in providing cures for known disease ?

'. . . because it seems to have little to do with the welfare of the patient, and everything to do with the ego of the therapist.'

Surely, its the ego of the patient which is uppermost, to enable payment for the therapy

I'm not a champion for homeopathy but question its dismissal on the grounds of not obviously/easily fitting in the 'science' bucket.

The problem with conventional medicine is its 'silver-bullet' approach. Identify a symptom to be zapped. Another one pops up: zap that. Clinical trials then adopt this approach: isolate a symptom for zapping. Double-blind trials remove conscious human impact. 'Many medical conditions fluctuate in severity, or even resolve altogether, over time. The body itself is by far the best doctor.' The symptom-zapping may aid or it may hinder. The atomistic science approach can be blind to the wider dis-ease and sub-symptoms being zapped. Its no real surprise that homepathy has failed the silver-bullet test: its the wrong test

Think outside the box.

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Strange Rituals in the Fields by Dani
Date: 25/11/2007 Time: 18:15:47
I am not erudite enough to really be in this thread but I do have some simple thoughts.

Actually, many of my thoughts are simple !

Somewhere there is a middle ground I would hope.

I do think that the regular Medical Doctor hands out Pills too quickly.

The Medical company representatives wine and dine the Doctors They are always bringing in lunch for their whole offices.

I have been in the waiting rooms and seen herds of the representatives going in and out dragging their little carts, leaving tons of samples behind

Their are ads in the magazines, on the telly, everywhere....

"Ask your Doctor about this new wonder drug, it will help you ".

So now you can diagnose yourself and go in for the right pill.

It would be great if our system allowed a Doctor to prescribe a massage for a stressed out mom, worker instead of a pill.

If it is truly severe then pills may be the answer, but how many times should it just be a massage, a few days off ? My friend in Germany was given some time at a health spa instead of pills.

Many people having been stuffed with pills are now looking for something less intrusive .

One friend is being trained to be a "listener " . All they do is listen to people talk about their problems. Sometimes that is all it takes. For in today's world, most people are rushing around and few are being listened to. Society has fractured so that "best friends " are hard to find, don't have the time to listen or won't listen. The family unit is not as it used to be and not a support base for many.

Our American health insurance system is based on medical only.

Very few alternative medical ideas are covered.

We do have some of the best medical treatment in the world but it is affordable for only a fraction of our population.

The majority of Americans have no medical coverage and so will seek sometimes questionable alternatives. Most seek no treatment, having no way to pay for it.

Most Doctors will not see you unless you have insurance. Plain and simple fact.

When you call for an appointment that is the first thing they ask you. Then when they do a reminder call for your appointment they tell you to be sure to have your co-payment, credit card/cash and insurance card with you.

And you think it is not a business first ?

Sorry, for wandering but in my country our health care is broken, no political body cares and people are doing without.

BUT illegals get to go to our hospitals, be treated and walk out without paying.

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Strange Rituals in the Fields by astounded
Date: 29/11/2007 Time: 15:24:31
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