I would like to thank Kate Birch and all the contributors for this edition of the California Homeopath. The subject of homeoprophylaxis (HP) is an important one, not just for homeopaths and other natural health advocates but potentially for millions of people as it addresses questions on the whole issue of disease prevention methods and vaccination across the world.
Vaccines work, but do they work as well as the pharmaceutical/medical industry and government would let us believe. Perhaps not, as there is much evidence that many diseases, such as polio and smallpox were already declining prior to the introduction of vaccines. However, we still need to look at various disease prevention methods, including vaccine and consider the risks and benefits of each. One of the most important concerns is for children who are particularly vulnerable to diseases, e.g., children in many developing countries or when the impact of the disease can be particularly devastating e.g., polio, diphtheria, meningitis etc. However, what has not been looked at seriously by the medical industry and governments are the risks of vaccines, due to both the antigen used and the increasing amount of adjuvants in the vaccines, creating their own significant problems. Also the whole question of a vaccine’s efficacy can be questioned, as seen in some of the debate on early polio vaccine campaigns (1).
Therefore, a nuanced discussion needs to look at both the risks of the disease if caught, and the risks of the vaccines. It is fair to say that the risks of the former have been exaggerated at times, to induce greater vaccine cooperation and have been suppressed in the latter, to diminish fears of the same. A recent example is the new Human papilloma virus HPV vaccine, which as well as being very expensive and also with dubious scientific evidence to support its blanket use, has shown to produce devastating side effects in a significant number of children, including death. Is the risk worth it?
Further – and this has been explored in a number of articles in this edition – many people consider that certain childhood diseases – what Samuel Hahnemann called ‘fixed miasms’, not only leads to life-long immunity once experienced, but also stimulates the basic immune system in a child, preventing possible chronic disease in the future. This cannot be categorically proven, but as some of the authors in the journal have surmised, if a disease has a purpose and is simply doing what it is designed to do, perhaps there is a reason why if left to nature, nearly every child would get the ‘normal’ childhood diseases such as measles, mumps, chickenpox and German measles. Many of us had all these diseases and as with the vast majority of fairly healthy children, the impact on us was relatively mild. Yes, it was inconvenient and required a working parent to take some days off work which is a less accepted action today. One of the rationales for the flu vaccine is the saving of lost work days. The economic factors are always there.
The fact remains, as homeopaths know so well, a healthy immune system will generally protect the integrity of the organism as it moves through an infective process. Complications of ‘normal’ childhood infectious diseases have been far less than what has been frequently expressed in the media when picture of a poor child with measles is spread over newspapers. Yes, measles can occasionally kill a child, or at least cause significant suffering, but in the West, it is few and far between, and it can be argued that the vaccine has had an equal perilous impact on a number of children. The experience of Andrew Wakefield, who is mentioned in this edition, is one of the more dramatic stories in modern medical history when his research showed the possible connection between the measles virus and its effect on the digestive tract in children. He lost his medical license and his career in the UK for his troubles.
One other factor to consider is that given many generations exposure to illnesses such as measles, the severity of the illness gets less the further down the generations due to genetic immunity being passed on. This was seen when the ‘white man’ exposed natives to diseases they had no immunity to, whether smallpox in the America’s, or measles in Aboriginal societies. We already had some immunity, they didn’t. So today, with children no longer getting measles and no longer passing on a genetic immunity to future generations, it is possible a new virulent strain of measles could show up and it ironically makes the vaccine more needed to prevent this! In other words, by using vaccines for these diseases, we are disturbing genetic immunity which goes back thousands of years.
It is true that in developing countries, with children already suffering from the effect of tropical diseases such as malaria and also from malnutrition and other environmental challenges, these factors increases their vulnerability to many diseases, including ‘normal’ childhood illnesses, and also diseases such as meningitis. Just now, newspapers are stating how successful the new meningitis vaccine has been in parts of West Africa where outbreaks occur every year during certain seasons. So, in these situations, do the possible benefits outweigh the risks? Every situation has to be considered based on the risk/benefit analysis. It is interesting in particular with meningitis, that exposure to the virus is extremely widespread and yet only a relatively few children become infected. There is often another angle to look at here and in the below link, there is evidence perhaps that the new vaccine led to cases of paralysis in children receiving the vaccine. It is not always easy to know the truth and also in developing countries, there is even less accountability for the side effects of vaccines (2).
As has been stated however, this argument is not often explored objectively, given the absolute doctrinaire position taken by the medical industry and governments and any objection to vaccination is seen virtually as a subversive act, and those putting forward these objections pose a risk to civilization itself. The recent controversy around the vaccine law passed in California, SB277, by the ‘liberal’ governor Jerry Brown, eviscerating parent’s personal choice of vaccines for their children shows how far this proselytizing has flourished in the social fabric of our society. In California, one of the most progressive and liberal societies on the planet, a parent has no choice but to vaccinate their child if their child wants to go to school and essentially belong to society. Are the risks of the diseases being vaccinated against threatening enough to the health and well-being of society that it is worth stamping out one of the most fundamental of human rights – that of a parent choosing what is best for their own child and the rights of “informed consent,” as stated in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights?
Informed Consent means being told of all the potential risks of vaccinations and having just cause to have access to appropriate compensation in case of significant side effects of a vaccine. Neither can be currently guaranteed in the daily experience of people, where doctors simply deny any side-effects from vaccines and where the government’s own vaccine compensation (in the USA) only accepts culpability in one in every 100 possible cases (3). Even then, the cost of vaccine damage is in the many millions of dollars! Further, laws exist to prevent a vaccine manufacture being held legally responsible for any vaccine side-effects.
It is interesting how much even progressive, liberal minded Californians believe in compulsory vaccine laws, which has to partly explain why Jerry Brown would sign such a law. Yet the same people will vociferously defend internet neutrality, the role of Edward Snowden in revealing the insidious action of the CIA, MI6, and the NSA, human rights in general and yet simply role over any intellectual discrimination when it comes to the profound implications of vaccine laws that allow a government to take a child away who is not vaccinated. Also, they will complain about the manipulation of drug prices and the cover up of deaths in medical experiments by “Big Pharma” and yet turn a blind eye to the same people who are forcing more and more vaccines on people, without backing it up with scientific evidence and showing that it is safe to give 29 different antigens before the age of 2. Again, do the benefits outweigh the risks?
So, where does Homeoprophylaxis (HP) come into this debate? Well, as explored by the authors in this journal, there is an active movement looking into how HP can be used as an alternative to, or in conjunction with current vaccine policy. Or, as one of the most well written homeopaths on the subject, Isaac Golden, from Australia discusses in his book, “Vaccination and Homeoprophylaxis, A Review of Risks and Alternatives,” how a dual approach could be established, given parents the option of one system or the other, as a means to explore scientifically how effective each can be and looking honestly at all the factors and possible risks and benefits.
Homeoprophylaxis has been written about and explored for well over 150 years and with certain specific remedies called ‘nosodes’ – that is remedies made from diseased material – homeopaths have been inoculating people against many diseases for a long time. Smallpox is one of the great examples and discussed in the journal here but also there are many more. Recently the use of a leptospirosis nosode against this highly infectious bacterial disease in Cuba showed a phenomenal impact as it was given to over 2.5 million people by the Cuban government and being orchestrated by a WHO approved global vaccine manufacturer called the Finlay Institute. The fact that a homeopathic remedy made from the bacteria of leptospirosis and given in such numbers could have such beneficial impact reveals once more the massive potential of HP. It is possibly the tip of the iceberg. Research into the use of HP to prevent malaria also has potentially profound implications, as malaria kills more people than nearly all other diseases put together. Imagine being able to inoculate millions of children living in epidemic regions of malaria with a homeopathic remedy.
However, some homeopaths have never embraced HP, and question its validity and homeopathicity. If homeopathy works according to the Law of Similars, how can a remedy prevent a disease that the person doesn’t have? The counter argument is simply that if you are susceptible to a disease, or living in an area where the ‘miasm’ or the ‘morpho-genetic field’ is part of the tapestry of life, as malaria is, then one is already under its influence and therefore a homeopathic remedy may prevent the disease as it treats this larger susceptibility as it shows up in the individual.
The question of which diseases to use homeoprophylaxis for is an interesting one. Some people question why to give it for normal childhood diseases. Surely it’s better to let children get the disease if possible if you believe in this approach. The fact is that is harder to do now than before as the vaccinated population is too large to prevent the disease being widely seen in its original form. However, it is now accepted that adults are susceptible to these diseases and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) is now recommending adults to get booster doses of all childhood vaccines to prevent the diseases as an adult where they can be much more intense. Can a parent choose to vaccinate against whooping cough, which it can be debated is not a ‘normal’ childhood illness as Hahnemann described, and not against chickenpox. Using HP, one can do that and here is where HP can be adapted to fit to meet the needs of many different parents.
It is true that one does want to avoid certain diseases. Even though the paralytic effects of polio only affect one in a hundred people, who wants to take that risk? Therefore, either using a vaccine or an appropriate HP makes sense. Diphtheria, although rarely seen now, also is something one doesn’t want to risk getting. Hepatitis B vaccine, often given at birth, is more controversial. Of course no one wants to get it, but given a new born baby won’t get it unless exposed to contaminated blood, mostly through sexual transmission, why give such a potentially dangerous vaccine to new born children? Also, and this has been described in some articles below, the amount of other ‘ingredients’ in vaccines is another serious factor in looking at the risks involved. If HP, given as a ‘pure’ disease energy in potency, can be proven to be effective and safer than some vaccines, then wouldn’t that be amazing?
But here is where another issue comes up. Proof! How do we go about proving this when one is already facing such social and political pressure. Well, that is the challenge and as has already been experienced by those exploring regular proof for the action of homeopathic remedies, those who are already prejudiced against homeopathy will always find a way to dismiss it. But as Golden and others write, at least we should try and we should document and validate our methodologies in our clinical work and in any trials we do. Kate Birch has committed herself to this work through the organization Free and Healthy Children International (FHCi), along with the HP Supervisors who are members of FHCi. This edition has been dedicated to looking at some of the work in Homeoprophyalxis in North America and around the world.
Personally, I think that using some of the more ‘esoteric’ sources of ‘homeopathically’ prepared energies that are written about in this issue does not help the homeopathic profession prove its validity here, especially in the field of HP, as we already have at our disposal so many proven remedies. Also, I think some of the explanations of treating the true source and soul of a person is questionable and we should be careful not to make claims we cannot fully back up. The reason for this is that if HP has as much potential as we think it has, and if our concerns about the profound impact of vaccines on the health of our children and future generations is correct, then HP might be an answer and we have an obligation to prove this method. This means we need to be able to discuss this with the broader society in terms that makes sense to them. We need to meet the situation half way. This is a big challenge and hopefully the articles and dialogs in this journal and the impact on the attendees from the conference recently in Texas, USA will stimulate further research and investigation into the possibilities of homeoprophylaxis.
My thanks again to Kate and to all the authors contributing to this edition, and to the supporters of the California Homeopath and the California Homeopathic Medical Society.
Richard Pitt CCH
Homeopath and Author,
Kenya, November 2015
(3) Vaccine Epidemic: How Corporate Greed, Biased Science and Coercive Government Threaten our Human Rights, our Health and our Children. By Louise Kuo Habakus and Mary Holland.
Chapter Seventeen: ”Vaccine-caused diseases and deaths are an unacknowledged epidemic. The FDA’s Vaccine Events Reporting System (VAERS), which is available and searchable online at www.medalerts.org stated that of November 17, 2010, VAERS listed 352,650 reports of vaccine adverse events. Former FDA commissioner David Kessler wrote in the Journal of the American Medical Association, that ‘only about 1% of serious side effects are reported to the FDA.’ Using that FDA commissioner’s own estimate, there have been 35.2 million adverse reactions since the inception of VAERS in 1990.”