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Pooh-Bah
Location: Bristol
Member Since: 6th Jan 2005
Total posts: 1785
Posted:If you haven't read my wheelchair poi thread then i'll quickly give an overview of my condition

I have a condition that causes my limbs to be very painful, I can't walk very far, stand for very long or play with my poi or staff very much frown I have seen so many different consultants and none of them find what is causing my pain and none of them can suggest what i should do to get better, although they all confidently say that i will get better.

I am coping with all rather well but my mum is really really worried about me and keeps spending money on things that she thinks will help. In january she spent 130 on some tablets that didn't work and today she sent me to see a homeopathic consultant that cost 65 just for one appointment. It really upsets me that she is so desperately trying to help an I am worried that people can see this and are ripping her off, conning her that these treatments will work to make money. It upsets me to see the disapointment on her face everytime something doesn't work.

Anyway, i'll get to the point. I am very skeptical about homeopathic medicine, i can't see how a tiny tiny amount of something dissolved in water can help. To be perfectly honest i think that its only a placebo. My mum really wants me to try it but i really really don't want to waste any more of her money so i would be really greatful if anyone had any experience of homeopathy, to let me know if it works or even helps a bit.

Obviously i want to get better as much as my mum does but i don't to get her or my hopes up that something will work when the chances are that it won't. I worry more about my mum worrying about me and spending all her money on me than i do about my condition.


Any advice or information will be greatfully received

Starpoi


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jeff(fake)
jeff(fake)

Scientist of Fortune
Location: Edinburgh
Member Since: 15th Apr 2005
Total posts: 1189
Posted:Just read spherculist last post. This makes absolutely no sense. It is a mass of science-esq words whose meanings have been confused in an atempt to prove a held belief. I could go through a point by point rebuttal but quite frankly I won't dignify it with that. I don't mean to be insulting spherculist but...

you have absolutely no idea what you are talking about


According to Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle of Quantum Dynamics, we may already be making love right now...

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quiet
quiet

analytic
Location: bristol
Member Since: 15th Sep 2004
Total posts: 503
Posted:dodgy science alert . ..

'We have absolutely no idea how memory in our minds works. We are mainly made up of water, a fundamental element. Now is it not possible that a chemical in the mind can store a bit of memory in the water surrounding it?'

Not so: there's quite a bit of solid experimental psychology and neurophysiology - concerning memory - available. But memory seems - at least in some cases - to be relatively stable over time, so whatever the implementing structure is also needs to be stable.

If it were proved that water has memory, it would indeed *slightly* change our understanding of physics/chemistry. But the crux of the issue, here, is that no-one has yet managed to prove this. This is slightly suspicious, given that homeopathy is supposed to be medicinal: for it to be medicinal, it must have an effect, and for it to have an effect, there must be something available to be measured. So we don't have particularly good reason to think that water does have memory.

I'm not claiming that it doesn't, or that homeopathy doesn't work: but I am claiming that we don't have enough evidence to assert either that water has memory or that homeopathy works.

I grant you, it's a nice idea, but that makes it attractive, rather than true.

However:

'My view is that homeopathy, the memory and the mind all exist outside of those rigid 4 dimensions that we inhabit. This is why I talk of it in terms of quantum, as energy.'

This is madness. If memory and the mind exist outside of the 4 dimensions that we inhabit, then you're saying, amongst other things:

1. Our memory and our minds are distinct from our selves.
2. Memory exists outside of time and space [4D].

Both are absurd. Particularly, the notion that memory exists outside of time and space: how, if this is the case, do you explain the fact that memory develops over time, and can be affected by simple physical substances - such as cannabis. Or how do you account for the fact that a blow to the head can lead to loss of memory?

And how on Earth can 'homoeopathy exist outside of our 4 dimensions'? Homeopathy is a practice or a school of thought, or something along those lines: granted, that's a non-physical entitity if it's an entity at all, but I'm baffled as to why you want to think that homeopathy 'exists outside of space and time'. Or exists at all, come to think of it - at least in the concrete sense.

Lastly:

'This is why I talk of it in terms of quantum, as energy.'

Quanta are discrete packets, not necessarily energy. For instance, space may be quantized (i.e. not able to be infinitely subdivided). Nor is it clear how this claim follows from the +4-dimensionality of the universe. Maybe you can explain.

Oh - and:

'It has been suggested that the level of belief a scientist has in a certain result can have a physical effect on those results. So a believer does rigorous scientific tests and finds a positive impact on homeopathy, a non believer finds a negative result. Why? Because homeopathy works on a much finer level than the rather crude western equivalents.'

Hang on a second, this is completely up the wrong tree. In ANY other instance, where the level of belief impacts on the results, we think that there is bias and that the results are untrustworthy. I think that the notion of beliefs impacting on effects is bizarre, but I'm prepared to let that go for the sake of argument. Suppose you're right. In that case, the positive results found by the believer are due to the scientist's belief, and NOT to the homeopathy itself: that is, NOT because 'homeopathy works on a finer level than western science'.

In other words, if you're right about how scientists' beliefs impact on results, then whatever they discover is a fact about scientists' beliefs, and not about homeopathy.

Personally, I'm more inclined to chalk that one up to experimental bias. That's the kind of thing that we try to control for in experiments, by the way.


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TheWibbler
old hand
Location: New Zealand
Member Since: 11th Apr 2003
Total posts: 920
Posted:2 quick things,

1) "The suggestion that there is some kind of conspiracy against homeopaths by scientist is completly absurd." I'm not suggesting that at all. I'm saying that there are many things that western science can't test for and perhaps the Act of testing them destroys the experiment, afterall by observing something you affect it.

2) There is the possiblility that things exist in 6 Dimensions, ie our 4 plus 2 more. And if you could explain to me how a smell conjures up vivid images and emotions then i'd love to know.

Look people, this is just my opinion. Obviously homeopathy exists in a rather peculiar realm of science. I'm just saying you may want to look at it slightly differently. Plus for me it seems to totally work. Perhaps that's just my belief affecting my reality.

As for 'experimental bias', that's not quite what i mean, well maybe on a subconscious level.

And yes, healthy food and water are both forms of medicine.


Spherculism ~:~ The Act of becoming Spherculish.

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spiralx
spiralx

veteran
Location: London, UK
Member Since: 1st May 2002
Total posts: 1376
Posted:Where does 6 dimensions come from? Superstring theories predict 10 or 11 in total, ie. our 3+1 and 6 or 7 extra dimensions. None of them predict 6 in total.

And a smell triggers vivid images because smell is the sense most strongly linked to memories in the brain. Not because of additional dimensions.


"Moo," said the happy cow.

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quiet
quiet

analytic
Location: bristol
Member Since: 15th Sep 2004
Total posts: 503
Posted:'I'm saying that there are many things that western science can't test for and perhaps the Act of testing them destroys the experiment, afterall by observing something you affect it.

once again, madness

1. the impact of observation on the observed makes a difference at the quantum (sub-microscopic) level; this is not significant at the level of macroscopic science.

2. there's nothing special about 'western' science. plenty of good, rigorous research goes on in the East, spherculist.

3. if you can't test for it, then (ex hypothesi) there is no evidence for it. if there was evidence, then you could set up a test where you gather such evidence. and if there's no evidence for it, you have no reason to believe it.

maybe it works for you; i'm not disputing that. what I've been at pains to point out is that we don't have any particularly compelling reason to think that homeopathy works.

4. BELIEF DOES NOT EQUAL REALITY, damnit. this is one of those ridiculous claims that seems to be trotted out at every opportunity in order to justify claims along the lines of 'well, my reality is different from yours, so there's no fact of the matter about what works and what doesn't, i mean, y'know, it's all relative, man'.

sod that for a lark. you want a convincing argument? ok:

i) your beliefs can be false
ii) where your beliefs are false, that is a matter of them failing to correspond to reality
iii) if reality = belief, then there's no possibility that your beliefs can fail to correspond to reality.
iv) hence if reality = belief, then your beliefs cannot be false.
v) BUT (i) and (iv) contradict each other, hence, by reductio, (iii) must be false.

that is, reality does not equal belief. damnit.

this does matter: for instance, there was, until recently, a trend in psychotherapy of 'retrieving lost memories', usually of child abuse, rape, etc. therapists took perfectly healthy patients, and managed to convince them that they had suffered ritualised abuse as a child. the patient came to hold these beliefs: but they were not real. had they been real, the resulting trauma and inculpation of innocents might have been justified. they weren't; it wasn't; and the therapists were doing something seriously wrong.


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Doc Lightning
Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA
Member Since: 28th May 2001
Total posts: 13920
Posted:Written by: spherculist

However. My argument is this. We have absolutely no idea how memory in our minds works. We are mainly made up of water, a fundamental element. Now is it not possible that a chemical in the mind can store a bit of memory in the water surrounding it? To western physics and chemisty this is not yet possible. But in the future, who knows.




The brain is mostly lipid (fat).

Look, the above statement is scientifically and philosophically indefensible. That's like saying that because we breathe air that air might contribute to immunity. Water is a solvent in which all reactions in the human body occur.

We DO have a great many ideas about how memory works, BTW. There is synaptic pruning, long-term potentiation, opening of NMDA channels, synaptic strengthening, and a number of other mechanisms.

You can't run off and say 'gee, there's water in the brain so maybe that's the way memory works!' It's a non-sequitur.

Written by:
Quantum effects are too small and short-lived to do something like cure a disease" ~ how can you say that? At what level does a virus affect your body? How small are they? What does it matter how small packets of energy are? Consider how small a molecule is, and consider the immense ammount of energy that binds it together. Consider that it is widely believed that Gravity seems such a weak force because it acts partly in other dimensions which we cannot see.



A virus may be ~100 nm to a few micrometers in diameter. A bacterial cell is on the order of one to a few micrometers. A human cell...well the largest is about a millimeter in diameter (an egg cell) but actually there are nerve cells that can approach 2 m in length, although their cross-section is quite small.

Nuclear effects DO play a role in biology, but only through their interaction with molecular interactions. For example, a stray alpha particle streaking into a nucleus in a molecule of DNA will cause a change in the affected atom which will cause a resultant change in the electron cloud which will cause a mutation. But no biological system has yet been found which can actively control anything occurring on a level smaller than single atoms. The energies required in manipulating nuclear physics are too high.

The problem with 'memory of the water' is that, as you said, everything vibrates. Including the water molecules. They slide in and around each-other in random patterns. And yes, it's easy to prove that it's random; just watch diffusion at work.

There are many nonconventional therapies that hold a lot of promise, but homeopathy just isn't one of them.


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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quiet
quiet

analytic
Location: bristol
Member Since: 15th Sep 2004
Total posts: 503
Posted:*-and* another problem: if water has 'memory', then each water molecule has a hopelessly large and confused amount of it

so not only does each water molecule 'remember' the homeopathic base (or whatever it is), but it will also 'remember' any number of poisons, random chemicals, etc.

it's hard to see why the substance used by the homeopath should have a distinctively large effect

it's also hard to see why the effect should increase as the dose decreases

not that i think water has memory, of course: but even if it did, your suggestion would not be coherent


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TheWibbler
old hand
Location: New Zealand
Member Since: 11th Apr 2003
Total posts: 920
Posted:spiralx: i started talking about extra dimensions and people assumed i was talking about completely separate ones, yes you can have more than 6. It's been suggested that at some point there was a 10 dimensional universe which split into the 4 we are in and another 6 others, but yeah, they can exist as part of our 4 or separate to them.

quiet: your first statement "i) your beliefs can be false" is an unsumption based on your belief that there is only one reality. The funny thing about the statement Belief Equals Reality is that if you don't believe it you are correct and if I do believe it I am also correct. You may very well disagree with this, but i don't so there is nothing you can say to me which will change this. That's fine by me since my belief allows you to have completely separate beliefs, whereas yours seemingly does not.

All I'm saying is that there are a lot of empty voids in our scientific knowledge, western or otherwise. To state that homeophathy cannot work is as foolish as saying that it definitely does works for everyone. What i find most amusing about scientists is their absolute belief in current theories. In 500 years time a lot of what you and i currently believe to be absolute fact will seem naive at best.

What i'm saying is that homeopathy seems to work for me, if someone can explain to me why this cannot be scientifically true then please tell me. But science can't prove or disprove it yet.

Listen, i'm just trying to explain things which seem impossible to me. Of course there are holes in what i believe, if there weren't then i would be the proud winner of the million dollar prize.

Do i think homeopathy has some merit, yes
do i think some people take advantage of this for monetary gain, yes
do i think there is an element of the placebo effect in homeopathy, yes
do i think it's the best alternative medicine, no
most importantly, do i think starpoi should experiment with alternative medicine, YES, but it doesn't have to be expensive.

so that's my position, argue about it as much as you like

laters


Spherculism ~:~ The Act of becoming Spherculish.

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Doc Lightning
Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA
Member Since: 28th May 2001
Total posts: 13920
Posted:If it seems impossible...maybe it is.

-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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jeff(fake)
jeff(fake)

Scientist of Fortune
Location: Edinburgh
Member Since: 15th Apr 2005
Total posts: 1189
Posted:I'm a scientist and I don't 'believe' unquestioningly in current theories. Also I can't name any scientist who does. All scientists understand that our knoledge is incomplete but that isn't an excuse to claim that every ridiculous claim is correct.
If we want to see an example of someone who is unwilling to accept that they could be wrong we need look no further than yourself, spherculist.


According to Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle of Quantum Dynamics, we may already be making love right now...

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spiralx
spiralx

veteran
Location: London, UK
Member Since: 1st May 2002
Total posts: 1376
Posted:Written by: spherculist
All I'm saying is that there are a lot of empty voids in our scientific knowledge, western or otherwise. To state that homeophathy cannot work is as foolish as saying that it definitely does works for everyone. What i find most amusing about scientists is their absolute belief in current theories. In 500 years time a lot of what you and i currently believe to be absolute fact will seem naive at best.


So despite the fact that our knowledge of molecular interactions has withstood a century or more of testing you think that some new advance in knowledge will come along and totally contradict what we know? Scientific progress is evolutionary, not revolutionary despite how it can look from the outside.


"Moo," said the happy cow.

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spiralx
spiralx

veteran
Location: London, UK
Member Since: 1st May 2002
Total posts: 1376
Posted:And we really need a "misconceptions about science" thread here...

"Moo," said the happy cow.

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quiet
quiet

analytic
Location: bristol
Member Since: 15th Sep 2004
Total posts: 503
Posted:quiet: your first statement "i) your beliefs can be false" is an unsumption based on your belief that there is only one reality. The funny thing about the statement Belief Equals Reality is that if you don't believe it you are correct and if I do believe it I am also correct. You may very well disagree with this, but i don't so there is nothing you can say to me which will change this. That's fine by me since my belief allows you to have completely separate beliefs, whereas yours seemingly does not.

Oh, madness. So there's 'nothing I can say which will change this'? In other words, you have as much naive confidence in your belief as those scientists whom you were criticising just a minute ago? Your position is equally dogmatic, is it? You see, I'm happy to change my view, if someone can give me a convincing argument . . .

Yes, there is an assumption that our beliefs can be false. But it's not *just* an assumption: there are good reasons for believing it. Firstly, there are arguments directly to that conclusion, but these tend to be rather complex and subtle (I'm thinking Davidson on truth & interpretation, and Wittgenstein on the incoherency of private language, and rule-following). Secondly, and less open to dispute, it is clear that the consequences of rejecting that assumption are disastrous.

I'm not going to argue directly for the assumption here: that would take too much time. What I am going to do is to elucidate the consequences of rejecting it. I'll then ask you to decide whether these consequences are acceptable, from your point of view.


So let us assume that your beliefs cannot be false. In this case:

1. There is no longer any reason for reflecting on your beliefs. Since reflection and rational inquiry aim at the truth - that is, at working out what is going on - we might as well not bother, since we already know that all of our beliefs are true. There is no room for error, so there cannot be any error to correct.

2. Furthermore, some palpably absurd beliefs will come out as true. For instance, suppose that I believe that 2 + 2 = 5, or that the moon is made of blue cheese. If my beliefs cannot be false, then 2 + 2 does indeed = 5; and, furthermore, the moon really is made of blue cheese.

3. Worse still, even if I hold contradictory beliefs, BOTH of those CONTRADICTORY beliefs will come out TRUE. Remember, a contradiction is where it is not possible for both elements to be true simultaneously. This by itself constitutes a reductio of your position.

4. Your position also makes 'what happened' dependent on 'what we think', rather than vice versa. Remember, the paradigm case of good scientific inquiry - in fact, any inquiry at all - is to try and make your beliefs fit the world. Let's take an example:

4b. The case of pseudo-memory. This is where a therapist hypnotises a patient and manages to 'discover' that the patient was subject to ritualised abuse as a child. Now there is strong evidence [see Ofshe & Walters, 'Making Monsters' if you want a summary] that these memories aren't discovered, but are created. In other words, we can make people believe that, for instance, their father raped them as a child.

So on your account, once this memory has been created, the father did actually rape the child - and should, of course, therefore be punished. But this looks deeply wrong-headed: you are making the past dependent on present memories, and leaving no room to say 'hang on a minute, that memory was FALSE'. Furthermore, this violates the principle that the past is causally independent of the present: you're making out that 'what happened' depends on 'what we think happened'.

But wait a second: before therapy, the patient believed (truly, given your assumption) that no rape had taken place. Then, after therapy, they believed (again, truly) that it had. But that's a contradiction: it can't both have happened and not have happened. Bear in mind that a large part of our understanding of language revolves around understanding what it would be for a statement to be false. But on your account, there is no such thing.

So, what do you think: are these all acceptable consequences?

-------

i) You haven't given any reason FOR your claim that 'belief = reality'
ii) You're just as dogmatic as the rest of them, and you don't seem to care.
iii) The position is, as the above illustrates, nutty.


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TheWibbler
old hand
Location: New Zealand
Member Since: 11th Apr 2003
Total posts: 920
Posted:IMO {

Really quickly cos i'm off home and none of this seems to have alot to do with homeopathy.

i) Belief Equals Reality: This is just my belief, there is no reason to believe it if you don't want to. Just as there is no reason to believe that Jesus was a white man. It's just a belief.

ii) Yes and Yes

iii) Your belief is different from mine, as far as i'm concerned your reality is different from mine. I could not exist in your universe and you could not exist in mine.

Beliefs evolve over time so there is every reason to reflect on them. As your beliefs change so does your reality, but that doesn't mean that either reality is right or wrong. You seem to believe in one singular reality, i believe in individual realities which all overlap and permeate each other. I think this is where we see things differently. This is why you find contradiction in your examples above, because everyone must experience the same reality. Whereas I see it that 2 people can experience the same incident, interpret and remember it differently and can quite happily coexist believing 2 completely different things happened. Now i'm sure you'll say that at least one of them must be wrong. But personally i'd say that neither are right or wrong.

As for memory, i've never been a strong believer in its acuracy. It has always seemed to me that people don't remember what actually happend but rather a blurred interpretation of what happend.

Also I believe that Cause can happen after Effect which quite possibly to you seems madness.

That pseudo memory experiment sounds fascinating. So it seems to me that memories can be created, and that perhaps that's what we all do, I mean perhaps we don't remember what actually happend, perhaps we just just kinda invent a best-fit story about what happend based on the available information.

As for gaping holes in scientific knowledge spiralx, perhaps you can explain to me how gravity works. I'd love to understand that.

Also, back on topic, i'd love to hear a good proof of why homeopathy cannot work.

} / IMO


Spherculism ~:~ The Act of becoming Spherculish.

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spiralx
spiralx

veteran
Location: London, UK
Member Since: 1st May 2002
Total posts: 1376
Posted:Gravity is basically the application of the least action principle in a curved spacetime i.e. objects take the shortest path. Spacetime is curved by matter.

Unless you're asking why this is the case? In which case the answer is we don't know yet (although things like loop quantum gravity seem to be providing answers) - but this has nothing to do with a "gaping hole" - we still understand how gravity works and how it affects the Universe.


"Moo," said the happy cow.

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Pooh-Bah
Location: Bristol
Member Since: 6th Jan 2005
Total posts: 1785
Posted:woah! i think i managed to take all that in!

I don't really want to get into a big scientific debate here but i definately believe that water has no memory

as quiet pointed out Written by:

*-and* another problem: if water has 'memory', then each water molecule has a hopelessly large and confused amount of it



Imagine how many different substances that one water molecule can come in contact with and think about the atoms that make up the water molecule and how they have been parts of many other molecules previously...its almost endless, how could there be a memory of any of that in a water molecule??

As far as homeopathy goes, I am a sceptic. The only reason I am trying it is because i have tried so many things and i just want to get better. I have in no way got my hopes up that it will work but i have got to the stage where i will try anything!

The only explanation of homeopathy that i can even start to comprehend is that a few molecules of a certain substance can act as a trigger causing the body to react in some way. Although if this is true, why not use slightly more of a substance to make sure it is going to get where it is needed?

I would continue but dinners ready! ubbrollsmile


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quiet
quiet

analytic
Location: bristol
Member Since: 15th Sep 2004
Total posts: 503
Posted:spherculist:

1. there are reasons to believe things. you disagree? really? when your doctor tells you that a certain course of medication will cure an illness, you don't think that gives you reason to take the medicine?

2. you haven't answered my challenge: i cited some consequences which followed from your position, and claimed that they were absurd. do you deny a) that they follow, or b) that they are absurd?

lastly:

'This is why you find contradiction in your examples above, because everyone must experience the same reality. Whereas I see it that 2 people can experience the same incident, interpret and remember it differently and can quite happily coexist believing 2 completely different things happened. Now i'm sure you'll say that at least one of them must be wrong. But personally i'd say that neither are right or wrong.'

Jesus, WILL YOU PLEASE DO ME THE KINDNESS OF READING - CAREFULLY - MY POST BEFORE YOU REPLY. I took pains to give an example where ONE PERSON SIMULTANEOUSLY HOLDS CONTRADICTORY BELIEFS.

'Whereas I see it that 2 people can experience the same incident, interpret and remember it differently and can quite happily coexist believing 2 completely different things happened. Now i'm sure you'll say that at least one of them must be wrong. But personally i'd say that neither are right or wrong.'

Really? Neither of them is right or wrong? So what are they disagreeing about?

- your account makes disagreement between people a logical impossibility. again, this is absurd.

Backwards causation? Well, you hold this opinion in spite of almost the whole of contemporary science, not to mention analytic philosophy (particularly, the philosophy of science/metaphysical bit). Any particular reason for holding this belief, or do you just like the sound of it?

I grant that memory isn't infallible - but so what?

As regards homeopathy, I never claimed that it couldn't possibly work. I did claim that there is no good reason to think that it does. I am aware that it is available on the NHS, but until someone comes along with either a) a convincing set of data showing that it works beyond the placebo effect, or b) a plausible account of how it could work - by which I don't mean the sort of pseudo-scientific mumbo-jumbo which gets trotted out at every opportunity by everyone who's glanced at the New Scientist website.

There's a common misconception that everybody's opinion is valid. This is wrong: just as the flat-earthers were wrong about the shape of the earth, and just as the creationists are wrong about evolution. Opinions backed up by firm evidence and cogent reasoning are better than dogma. Opinions based on nothing in particular, unsupported by reasoning, and completely absent of evidence, should be argued against where necessary and ignored otherwise. Why? Because if someone is unwilling to adduce reasons in support of their position, they are unlikely to be amenable to reasoned argument; hence such argument is a waste of time.

That's just my opinion, of course.


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Nate
Nate

Groovy ga watashi no namae desu!
Location: Oxford, Oxfordshire, England
Member Since: 5th Aug 2004
Total posts: 1530
Posted:i've used various homeopathic medicine all my life and its always seemed to work for me

I like Languages.

Educate your self in the Hazards of Fire Breathing STAY SAFE! <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/hug.gif" alt="" />

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jeff(fake)
jeff(fake)

Scientist of Fortune
Location: Edinburgh
Member Since: 15th Apr 2005
Total posts: 1189
Posted:Written by: Nate
i've used various homeopathic medicine all my life and its always seemed to work for me

Other people have used them and they haven't, sometimes to the cost of their life.


According to Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle of Quantum Dynamics, we may already be making love right now...

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quiet
quiet

analytic
Location: bristol
Member Since: 15th Sep 2004
Total posts: 503
Posted:i sprinkle goblin powder around my door, to keep the goblins away. it seems to work for me.

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Birgit
Birgit

had her carpal tunnel surgery already thanks v much
Location: Edinburgh
Member Since: 27th Jan 2005
Total posts: 4145
Posted:Hmmm. Actually what starpoi was asking would interest me as well, if you need about 1 molecule of a substance per bathtub of alcohol-water-mix to make the water "remember" it (some "medicines" really are that diluted!), why not just apply more of the substance? That's not meant to start a debate about how silly/useful the concept is, just about why it's not done in homeopathy smile



Oh, and quiet, can I have some of your goblin powder please? ubblol ubbrollsmile


"vices are like genitals - most are ugly to behold, and yet we find that our own are dear to us."
(G.W. Dahlquist)

Owner of Dragosani's left half

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Doc Lightning
Doc Lightning

HOP Mad Doctor
Location: San Francisco, CA, USA
Member Since: 28th May 2001
Total posts: 13920
Posted:Birgit raises an interesting point. Not only is the idea that molecules can 'remember' a substance absurd, but think about it... By the time you get that diluted, not only are there no molecules of the original substance left, but none of the molecules of water in the preparation have actually ever seen the substance, anyway. So how can they 'remember' something they've never seen?

Remember, just because science is incomplete doesn't mean that a crackpot theory can hold water. That's like saying that if I shove a spear through your heart you might not die because the spear didn't touch your liver.


-Mike )'(
Certified Mad Doctor and HoP High Priest of Nutella

"A buckuht 'n a hooze!" -Valura

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Birgit
Birgit

had her carpal tunnel surgery already thanks v much
Location: Edinburgh
Member Since: 27th Jan 2005
Total posts: 4145
Posted:Well, from what I remember about the THEORY, some type of vibration (sorry if I'm using the wrong word, it doesn't really matter that much though) is supposed to be passed on from the molecules to the ethanol in the solvent. (Another interesting point, homeopathic medicines often contain stupid amounts of alcohol). The ethanol molecules then carry on that vibration through the dilutions and stimulate each other.



Dilutions get named, I think D-something. D1 is a 1/10, D2 a 1/100 and so on. Apparently D30s are quite common. Which is a 1/1000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 dilution. This also means that you would need 161290 litres of solvent to contain a single molecule.



Now, even if it works that way, I can't see why you'd not just add more of the substance. Unless it's really poisonous, certainly it would be a much safer bet to work? (Sorry. Me has school medicine brain, so if there's someone who actually knows something about homeopathic theory I'd really be interested in their opinion)


"vices are like genitals - most are ugly to behold, and yet we find that our own are dear to us."
(G.W. Dahlquist)

Owner of Dragosani's left half

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spiralx
spiralx

veteran
Location: London, UK
Member Since: 1st May 2002
Total posts: 1376
Posted:Ah, why am I not surprised that it's all about "vibrations". Along with "dimension" they are the most overused words in all New Age and pseudo-scientific literature ubblol

"Moo," said the happy cow.

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.:star:.
.:star:.

Pooh-Bah
Location: Bristol
Member Since: 6th Jan 2005
Total posts: 1785
Posted:Birgit - you're right about the alcohol....

The stuff i have been given is a tincture which is alcohol based. it tastes absolutely disgusting!! Surely the alcohol will alter the properties of whatever it is that they put in it?

The other thing i have to take is a tiny sugar pill with something in it...

the specialist wasn;t too keen to disclose what was in the stuff 'a combination of homeopathic remedies'. I am one of those people that asks endless questions and i am not too happy about putting something i know nothing about in to me. I'm going to email him and ask lots more questions...i'll post his response..if he responds


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quiet
quiet

analytic
Location: bristol
Member Since: 15th Sep 2004
Total posts: 503
Posted:NEVER TRUST DOCTORS WHO AREN'T PREPARED TO BE TRANSPARENT

*any* good doctor will be prepared to give you some explanation of what he's doing, what he's giving you, what effects or side-effects are likely, etc, etc.

those who aren't, tend to be quacks.

there's a great british tradition of 'doctors' or 'specialists' providing 'cures', but being strangely reticent about the nature of the cure in question. why are they so reticent? because the 'cure' turns out to be a sugar pill with nothing in it, or an over-the-shelf remedy for which they are charging a 400% mark-up, or something similar.

why on earth wouldn't they be willing to tell you if they had nothing to hide?


ture na sig

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TheWibbler
old hand
Location: New Zealand
Member Since: 11th Apr 2003
Total posts: 920
Posted:Well after a quick bit of googling i found a rather fascinating article

Just a quicky for quiet tho: Your belief system allows for you to hold 2 contradicting beliefs, leading you to the conflict. I only use the word Belief once all conflicting thoughts have been resolved into 1 singular Belief. So your arguments fall on deaf ears because you start with conditions that cannot occur in my beliefs system and then prove that they cannot occur.

But back to homeopathy:

This link is very interesting http://www.elephants.com/pdf/what_is_homeopathy.pdf
br>
So it turns out that homeopathy works in animals and is used rather exstensively. Assuming the animal has no idea it is recieving homeopathy, there can be no placebo effect.

here's some particularly interesting quotes for those who aren't gonna read the whole article: (edit:although i have quoted about half of it oops)

Written by:
Homeopathy is a 200 year old medical discipline based on the principle that like
cures like. The medication used in treatment is chosen based on this principle by
using the substance in very small doses that would cause the same symptoms in
higher doses in a healthy person. This phenomenon has been observed since
the time of Hypocrites but Samuel Hahnemann, a German physician practicing in
the late 1700s, was the first to put it to extensive clinical trial and use. He and his
colleagues tested 100s of different substances for their effects on healthy
people. These were meticulously run double blind studies of each substance,
called provings. He used these provings as his basis for applying the first
principle of like cures like.



Written by:
Over time Hahnemann slowly lowered the dose of medicine he was using and,
surprisingly, found that lower doses worked as well as the higher doses without
the side effects. He used a carefully controlled system of dilution followed by
succussion to lower the doses.



Written by:
Homeopathy has been used in farm and companion animals almost as long as it
has been used to treat humans. There are several good publications by
respected veterinarians outlining the use of homeopathy in acute and chronic
conditions in several different animal species. In Asia and India homeopathy is
routinely used to treat elephants.



Written by:
Homeopathy is not limited to the treatment of any particular type of disease or
body system. It can be used to treat any problem from behavior all the way to
serious pathological conditions like cancer. The success of the therapy depends
on several factors. The main limitation is whether the body can heal itself from its
present condition.



Written by:
A combination of the
right homeopathic medicine, good nutrition and a healthy life style can trigger a
similar healing response to chronic problems.



Written by:
The Scientific Basis for Homeopathy:
Clinical research into the response to homeopathy has been conducted since its
beginnings. Hahnemann kept extensive record of his patients, their diagnoses
and their progress during treatment. Double blind research is less common and
one of the challenges of this kind of research is inherent in the way homeopathy
is applied. In conventional medicine, patients are generally grouped according to
their diagnosis and treated with the same or similar medications or therapies. In
homeopathy, the conventional diagnosis is only one symptom and the treatment
is based on all of the symptoms of the patient. In other words, the same
diagnosis is very unlikely to call for the same treatment. In most research of this
type the variable of interest is kept the same and compared to placebo, while in
homeopathy, each patient would most likely get a different homeopathic
medicine in different strengths and for different times depending on their
symptom picture. This is an important fact to realize since often research done
with homeopathy is invalid because the medicines are applied using only the
symptoms of the chief complaint as indicators for which remedy to use. This is
not homeopathy. In order for homeopathy to be effective over the long term
course of treatment the medicines must be prescribed according to the totality of
the patients picture. In a 10 patient group it would be rare for even 2 patients to
be given the same remedy. Results will also have to be measured over a much
broader scale. On the time scale, in chronic conditions it can take months to
years to see the full extent of the response. On the measurable symptom change
scale, every patient responds according to their individual patterns. Homeopathy
is not directly affecting the symptoms and the range of positive response is as
wide as the range of possible remedies. The existing scientific model for double
blind randomized research is not the best model to objectively investigate the
homeopathic response. New models are being developed that will help to
quantify and qualify homeopathic treatments in a more objective and valid way.



And especially for my doubting frined Mr spiralx, stick this in you pipe and smoke it BIATCH

Written by:
The theory of how ultra low doses can possibly affect the health of
the patient falls in the realm of quantum physics.




ubblol


Spherculism ~:~ The Act of becoming Spherculish.

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Birgit
Birgit

had her carpal tunnel surgery already thanks v much
Location: Edinburgh
Member Since: 27th Jan 2005
Total posts: 4145
Posted:d'uh!!! I ABSOLUTELY agree with quiet, if the guy can't even explain why what he gives you works and what it is don't trust him!! Even if you don't believe in homeopathy, he should be able to explain what he's doing and what he thinks it does!

mad mad2 censored


"vices are like genitals - most are ugly to behold, and yet we find that our own are dear to us."
(G.W. Dahlquist)

Owner of Dragosani's left half

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Birgit
Birgit

had her carpal tunnel surgery already thanks v much
Location: Edinburgh
Member Since: 27th Jan 2005
Total posts: 4145
Posted:Written by: spherculist


On the time scale, in chronic conditions it can take months to years to see the full extent of the response. On the measurable symptom change scale, every patient responds according to their individual patterns. Homeopathy

is not directly affecting the symptoms and the range of positive response is as wide as the range of possible remedies. The existing scientific model for double

blind randomized research is not the best model to objectively investigate the homeopathic response. New models are being developed that will help to quantify and qualify homeopathic treatments in a more objective and valid way.







right...



so basically, if there is no effect seen it'll just take a bit longer. Maybe until some problems get resolved otherwise? And do the individual patterns happen to be whatever the therapist wants to show?



And also, if there is not yet a model to prove that it works, like double blind randomised research, I'd say that this means currently it's hard to prove that homeopathy works, not that the model is wrong. This bit really just seems like an explanation to why it's nearly impossible to prove effects of homeopathy.



And about the quantum physics, do they say that because 99.9 % of the population don't understand quantum physics and therefore most won't question it, or is there actually anything they can support by using a physics model? They say there are lots of publication, yet they don't even list one in their references frown


"vices are like genitals - most are ugly to behold, and yet we find that our own are dear to us."
(G.W. Dahlquist)

Owner of Dragosani's left half

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spiralx
spiralx

veteran
Location: London, UK
Member Since: 1st May 2002
Total posts: 1376
Posted:Written by: spherculist
Just a quicky for quiet tho: Your belief system allows for you to hold 2 contradicting beliefs, leading you to the conflict. I only use the word Belief once all conflicting thoughts have been resolved into 1 singular Belief. So your arguments fall on deaf ears because you start with conditions that cannot occur in my beliefs system and then prove that they cannot occur.


That's just sophistry where you've replaced "belief" with "thought".

Written by: spherculist
And especially for my doubting frined Mr spiralx, stick this in you pipe and smoke it BIATCH

</font><blockquote><font class="small">Written by:</font><hr />
The theory of how ultra low doses can possibly affect the health of
the patient falls in the realm of quantum physics.




ubblol


How? I can make outlandish and incorrect statements without backing them up with any facts, doesn't make any of them true. And look - if you read the article it's exactly what I said a few posts ago - it's all about "vibrations" ubblol None of that paragraph is true. Similar vibrations don't cancel each other out, they reinforce each other. And atoms don't have vibrations, they have wave functions.


"Moo," said the happy cow.

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