Does the Bible Support Homeopathy?

It might seem like a superfluous question, but some supporters of homeopathy have decided that there are Bible verses supporting this alternative style of medicine.  Since homeopathic medicine raises some serious and interesting claims, I’ve decided to look into it.

The practice of homeopathy was started by Samuel Hahnemann in 1796.  He came up with a notion that he should cure symptoms by administering drugs to his patients that would artificially give them the same symptoms as they already had.  And, for some reason, the dosage needed to be very, very, very small.  So, a patient with a headache might be treated with an herb that was known to give headaches after it had been strongly diluted in water.

Today, these medicines are still available to those willing to spend $90 on a bottle of nose spray.  The ingredients in these medicines have been heavily diluted in water and promise that there will be no side effects.  That is a pretty easy promise to keep, because the dilution level is so high that the mix is essentially just water (sometimes the dilution level is so high that it surpasses Avagaro’s limit, which means that there’s no chance of a single molecule of the original substance remaining).  There’s a very good video discussing homeopathy here, if you want more information.

What could this possibly have to do with the Bible?  Dana Ullman, famous homeopathy spokesperson, has found a few Bible verses that he thinks prove homeopathy as a real science.  For example, in the book of Numbers the Israelites are able to ward off the effects of snakebite by looking at a snake.  Ullman sees in this an echo of homeopathy – disease/infection can be cured by similar things.  That’s a pretty broad connection.  Elsewhere, Moses throws a bitter branch into bitter water and makes the water drinkable.  Again, Ullman believes this is evidence that God wants us to cure disease with similar things – thus proving (somehow) that if a substance causes similar symptoms as you disease, then heavily diluting that substance in water creates a cure.  (Note: these Bible passages discuss miracles the Israelites witnessed that had no scientific basis- hence the “miracle” part.  These were not medical workshops.)  The full list of his biblical “findings” is here.

The logic connecting homeopathy to the Bible is clearly faulty and so are the scientific claims – but the most ardent supporters of homeopathy do not appeal to science.  It’s obvious that diluting something can’t make it more potent or more useful (especially if it is diluted until only water is left), so the homeopathic community reaches out to magic and superstition.  They will say that magic powers (sometimes from Atlantis) are responsible for these cures and that science simply can’t understand it.  Of course, if that were true we would be able to independently verify that these cures work through clinical trials; the homeopathic cures fail to work in every known scientific observation.

So, homeopathy is scientific nonsense, and since the peddlers of these “cures” are fraudulent we should be certain to keep it away from Christianity.

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