Holistic concept in Homoeopathy,Yoga & Naturopathy

Dr. Ashis Datta

“Yoga is really one of the grandest of sciences….

Take up the study of this science as you would any other science of a material nature, and remember there is no mystery and no danger in it.”    – Swami Vivekananda

Yoga is a method by which one can develop one’s inherent powers in a balanced manner. It offers the means to reach complete self–realization. The literal meaning of the Sanskrit ward ‘YOGA’ is to ‘yoke’. Accordingly, Yoga can be defined as a means for uniting the individual spirit with the universal spirit.

Yoga is one among the six system of Vedic philosophy. Swami Vivekananda saw it clearly over 115 years ago even the foundations of the modern medicine/science and Technology were being laid in west, benefit of Yoga as a therapy can easily be used as a scientific method along with Homoeopathy and can also be trained and taught to the followers of Homoeopathy.

Yoga and Homoeopathy are very much closure. Yoga aims at creating, bring about internal harmony of the mind, body and spirit, must operate in such a way that there is complete peace, there is no disturbance in the body as a whole or in any part of the body. Practice of Homoeopathy, also tries to cure the man as a whole, it creates balance where there is imbalance. Philosophy of Homoeopathy believes that  although apparently a organ is diseased, but actually the man as a whole is sick, the expression of the sickness is through the organs. Hence, Homoeopathic remedy, when it is administered, it creates order and automatically the peripheral organ, which is suffering, is also helped.

Secondly, the biggest discovery is the smallest dose i.e. homoeopathic dose.  A small dose – it is not metabolized the way drugs or medicines of other system are metabolized – it hardly touches the tongue and the stimulus, and it goes through the afferent nerves to the center of the brain called the “ silent area “. That is where again there is stimulation and it is put in to operation. These mechanisms bring out harmony and peace in the body. That is how Homoeopathy and Yoga are complementary to each other.

At the same time, another similarity between Yoga and Homoeopathy is that Homoeopathy does not create any “ Rajasic” or “Tamosic” symptoms. That means, they have no side effects, where as, other drugs are likely to do so. For example, after taking a drug one feel better in regards to his complaint, but some times else starts happening. He may feel weak, may feel more irritable. But in Homoeopathy, it is the mind which gets healed first, patient feels better mentally before the amelioration of the physical symptoms. Here cure takes place from above downwards; from within outwards, most important organ to less important organ, symptoms disappear as reverse order of their appearances. This is the law of cure i.e easily comprehensible principle (according to aphorism 2 of Organon of Medicine) in Homoeopathy. Yoga also aims at stimulating the basic area of super knowledge or supra-consciousness, which is able to control our adaptability, our power to fight against infections, to adapt to different circumstances or to keep inner balance harmonious. As such Yoga should be the part of medical education particularly in Homoeopathy.

Dr Samuel Christian Fedrick Hahnemann, a German physician and founder of Homoeopathy amazed the medical world with his astounding discovery of scientific technique to establish the curative power of substances in infinitesimal dilutions.

The most brilliant medical minds of the era extended their recognition to him. Dr.Hahnemann was out and out scientist, his deep intuition led him to speculate on metaphysical problems; and it is not a mere coincidence that his lines of thought bear a close parallelism with those of the ancient Indian thinkers, given the proper facilities for its growth and spread. Homoeopathy holds a brighter future for the suffering humanity; and Hahnemann’s Organon will always remain as one of the most important landmarks in the vast uncharted sea of life, which comprises the scope, and subject matter of Medicine.

Dr. Hannemann recognized the value of those, other than drugs, which can be used as therapeutics measures for the relief of the sick. True to his dynamic conception of Life force he saw the propriety of using some other physical energy which are subtle enough to act on former. He defined the scope of therapeutics of those (like Baths, Electricity, Magnetism, Mesmerism etc.) in his Organon of Medicine. He hinted that these measures are especially useful for diseases of sensibility or irritability, abnormal sensations and involuntary muscular movements.

In aphorism 291 of his ‘Organon of Medicine’ he advised physical exercise under the supervision of a capable teacher gives dexterity and vigour to the body, strengthen the moral character and assist the activity of the mind in the study of science.

It is gratifying to note that the physio-therapeutic measure mentioned by Dr. Hahnemann has developed into a distinctive science, and people are specializing in those departments with the increase of knowledge in each of these departments.

Out of many celebrated definitions of Yoga there are two in ‘Bhagwad Gita’ which are as under :-

                                1) Samatvam yoga ucyate                      i.e. Yoga is balance, harmony

                        2) Yogah karmasukausalam                    i.e. Yoga is skill in works

Apart from these there is famous aphorism in ‘Patanjali’ :- Yogascittavrttinirodhah  i.e. Yoga is the stilling of the modifications of consciousness.

In the eyes of Hrishi Aurobindo as describe in  ‘Kena Upanishad’,

“The existence of a vital force or life-energy has been doubted by western science because that science concerns itself only with the most external operations of nature and has as yet no true knowledge of anything except the physical and outward. This Life force is not physical in itself; it is not material energy but rather a different Principal supporting matter and involved in it.  It supports and occupies all forms and without it no physical form could have come into being or could remain in being. It acts in all material forces such as electricity and is to self manifestation in those that are nearest to pure force (this justifies the propriety of electricity therapy); no material force could exist or act without it, from it they derive their energy and movement and they are its vehicles. But all material aspects are only field and form of the Life-principle (‘Prana’ in Indian Philosophical terminology) which is in itself a pure energy, their cause and not their result. It therefore cannot be detected by any physical analysis; physical analysis can only resolve for us the combinations of these material happenings, which are its results and the external signs, and symbols of its presence and operation. We can become aware of its existence by that purification of our mind and body and that subtilisation of our means of sensation and knowledge which become possible through Yoga”.

Indian Sages and Seers have had evolved a large of body of techniques (the term yoga also means technique). Basic to them all are Patanjali’s yoga with its eight steps or limbs. It gives first five steps as of preparatory nature. They are yama (abstinence), niyama (observances), asanas (postural pattern), pranayama (regulation and control of respiration), and Pratyahara (withdrawal of sense from their respective objects) Dharana, Dhyana (meditation) and Samadhi.

Yoga has also self therapy. All paths of yoga (mana, karma, Bhakti etc.) have healing potential to shelter out the effects of the pains which come in life.

Yoga is not only preventive, but it also helps us in curative as well as promotive aspects. There are diseases of degenerations, mind and sprits. Man is restless, because he is anxious, insomniac today, so how to solve these problems. Yoga will be the ideal tranquillizer, it will give the rest, the peace, hence Yoga or yogic education can be made a part of medical education, in every stream, especially in Homoeopathy.

The practice of Yoga prevents psychosomatic disorders/diseases and improves an individual’s resistance and ability to endure stressful situations.

Yoga has a positive approach to Health. Today’s man is engaged in seeking pleasures and happiness. Pleasure means that one is relieved of burden by throwing off conflicting energies. One finds happiness in expectation, in hoping, in desiring and in dreaming. Such happiness is totally negative. The only positive thing is bliss, it comes only when one’s energies are fulfilled. Bliss and beauty comes only when life energy is in easy-relaxed movement. This can be transformed through progressive yogic practice.

Human health is the harmonious functioning of the different Systems working in the human body. The nervous and endocrine system is of supreme importance. Asana and especially Pranayama provide movement and massage to various organs and system. Nerves and muscles are trained and toned up, that tone is maintained and nerves and muscles in the organ become healthier through rich blood supply to brain, spinal cord along with cranial and spinal nerves and to endocrine system together with other system receives, bring about balanced conditions of mind and body raising consciousness progressively in higher places.

Yoga, a universal practical discipline, hence perfection and result comes from practical application only. It is universal in character for practice and application irrespective of culture, nationality, race, caste, sex, age and physical condition. It is ‘sadhana’ which make, the realization of the self  of the spiritual experience possible. Literarily “Sadhana” is the form of discipline by the regular practice of whose technique something is accomplished or more precisely “means to an end”.

Yoga is an Evolutionary Process in the development of human consciousness. Flowering of total consciousness in man is enlightment. Conscious evolution does not necessarily begin in any particular man rather it begins only if one chooses it to begin. The vices like use of alcohol and drugs, working exhaustively, indulging too much in sex and other stimulations is to seek oblivion, a return to unconscious men.

Through Yoga the concentration of mind on a single train of ideas is possible. So the knowledge about the object, image or idea may arise naturally in the mind by force of concentration. By Dhyanayoga when mind go beyond the mechanical process of thinking, the pure perception of truth comes out, which is called philosophically Vijnana.

Self-observation and liberation from chains of thought is the most difficult thing. It is the concentration of the will against the obstacles (i.e. wandering of the mind, forgetfulness, sleep, physical & nervous impatience, restlessness etc.) and along with that increasing purity and calm of the inner consciousness (citta) out of which thought and emotion arise (i.e. a freedom from all disturbing reactions, such as anger, grief, depression, anxiety about worldly happenings etc.). When man is reached at the point of mental perfection, at that very moment Truth or Moral comes out from within.

A man has to be accepted in his totality. He needs to be simultaneously trained in reasoning, emotions, doubt and faith also. Yogic practices are an attempt to push an individual towards his own inner evolution, the ultimate realization of his potential.

As it has a special therapeutic value it’s benefits can be utilized along with Homoeopathic therapeutics for preservation of health / restoration of  sick to health and also for  right direction of life.

Another therapeutic process is Nature cure, is rightly described as a system of man living in harmony, with constructive principles of nature on physical, mental, moral and spiritual planes of living. Health is normal and constitutes a harmonious vibration of the elements and forces composing the human entry at the physical and mental level in conformity to the constructive principles of nature as applied to individual life. Disease is abnormal and an unharmonious vibration of the elements and forces constituting the human entity. Most of the diseases now a days are from which mankind is afflicted, are the outcome of wrong life style, food habits and increasing pollutions in the environment. Nature cure is a very old science of healing and method of living and has great promotive, curative and rehabilitative potentials.

For treatment, the system primarily lays emphasis on correcting all the factors involved and allows the body to recover itself.  In Nature cure it simply helps in nature’s efforts to overcome disease by applying correct natural modalities and canalizing the natural forces to work under safe limits. Here Homoeopathy has a great role in supporting the vital force dynamically following the Therapeutic Law of Nature which has been pointed out by Dr. Hahnemann in aphorism 26 of his Organon of Medicine which is as under : “ A weaker dynamic affection is permanently extinguished in the living organism by a stronger one, if the latter (whilst differing in kind) is very similar to the former in its manifestations. “  

Most of the principles of Naturopathy like Morbid matter theory, Fasting, Nutrition, Dietetics, Cleansing act, Exercises, Massages, have been in practice in some form or the other and are well known to our ancient  Vaidyas, Seers and saints.

Naturopathy believes that the natural methods of living, thinking and of treatment are :

1) Return to nature by the regulation of eating, drinking, breathing, talking, standing, sitting, bathing,    dressing, working, resting, thinking the moral life, sexual  and social activities etc. on a normal and    natural basis.

2) Eliminatory Remedies such as water, air, light, earth, magnetism, electricity etc.

3) Bio-chemical Remedies such as scientific live food, selection and combination of natural food  juices.

4) Mechanical Remedies such as corrective physical culture, yogic practices.

5) Massages, magnetic treatment, acupressure, water treatment.

6) Mental and spiritual remedies such as scientific relaxation, normal suggestions, constructive thought, the prayer of faith etc.

Diets as broadly classified are of three types :
i)  Eliminative diet-liquids lemon-citric juices-tender coconut water, vegetable soup, buttermilk etc.

ii) Soothing diet such as fruits, salads, boiled/steamed vegetables, sprouts,  vegetable chatney.

iii) Constructive diet such as wholesome flour, unpolished rice, little pulses, sprouts, curd, less spice curries etc.

Dr. Hahnemann mentioned that proper hygienic and dietary measures must be taken recourse before administration of remedial drugs which are used as remedial stimuli to rouse the vital force to react against the morbific agents and overcome their noxious influences.

Dr. Boenninghausen made a further study on dietary measures, which a patient should observe while undergoing a homoeopathic treatment, it was published by him in 1833 through a brochure for the lay public, the extract taken from it is given below –

“Every article of food ought to be free from medicinal virtue, since this causes variations in his condition, and thus must make healthy man, who is  more or less ill, even if this should be only transitory. The long continued use of many medicinal substances in many cases dulls the susceptibility for them, so that the vital force eventually is no more affected thereby. But experience has proved that the dynamisation of the drugs have so much increased the intensity (doubtless immaterial) of the medicinal virtue that all grossly material influences can affect it but little or not at all. So, some amount of laxity in dietary may be allowed now. In chronic cases patients are forbidden, besides the actual medicines of all kinds, only coffee and strong tea, heating drinks, spices and strong odours, especially camphor.

Keeping in view lessons given by Dr. Samual Hahnemann, Dr. Boenninghausen, Swami Vivekananda, Hrishi Aurobindo and other scientists/ Mahatmas and for getting benefits of other therapeutic measures (apart from internal medicine) yoga therapy can also be considered during the treatment of patient by different system of medicine including Homoeopathy.

Bibliography :

  • Organon of Medicine –  Dr.Samual Hahnemann.
  • Commentary on Organon of Medicine – Dr.B.K.Sarkar.
  • How to overcome Mental Tension –  Swami Gokulananda.
  • DHYANA, meditation for inner growth – Sri Aurovindo. 

Dr. Ashis Datta, M.D(Homoeopathy)

  • E-Mail[email protected]
  • Author of “Science & Art of Homoeopathic Case-Taking
  • Former Member of Teaching Faculty of Nagpur College of Homoeopathy and approved by Nagpur University.
  • Approved as P.G. Guide for Poona University, Bharti Vidyapeeth University, Utkal University, Dr. B.B.A University, Agra, B.A.Bihar University, Hemchandracharya North Gujrat University, Maharashtra University of Health Sciences and West Bengal University of Health Sciences.
  • Recipient of “Appreciation award-2006” from Board of Homoeopathic System of Medicine. Govt. of NCT of Delhi
  • Recipient of “Life time achievement award – 2007” from Board of Homoeopathic System of Medicine. Govt. of NCT of Delhi
  • Presently Asstt. Secretary (Tech.) to Central Council of Homoeopathy (Govt. of India), New Delhi.   

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