Monday, December 13, 2010

The Quackometer on Homeopathy: "Cult-Like" [and Parallels to Naturopathy]

here, I cite from a recent post at The Quackometer regarding homeopathy [see 001., below]; then, I suggest some similarities homeopathy has to naturopathy [see 002., below]; and I provide a specific example [see 003., below]:

001. Andy Lewis writes in "Escaping the Cult of Homeopathy" (2010-12-13):

"I would not be the first to suggest that believers in alternative medicine often display the traits of members of cults [...and] of all alternative medicines homeopathy, to me, looks the most cult-like [...e.g.] it defines itself in opposition to what it calls 'allopathy' and in doing so creates a straw man of what medicine is today [...] homeopathy is so strictly defined by its opposition to modern mainstream medicine that it will always lie at the fringes in a pseudoscientific bubble [...] it must attack and denounce alternatives – such as scientific medicine – without any form of compromise [...] the cult model explains why virtually no homeopaths have condemned the murderous practice of using sugar pills to treat fatal diseases like HIV and malaria [...this] thinking of the cult [...this] cult-like dark side of homeopathy [...this] pseudo-medical and superstitious cult [...homeopathy apostate] Wendy describes life inside the cult of homeopathy [...] Wendy talks about how the training for homeopaths is vital for creating the cult-like mentality [...] questioning was highly discouraged [...] 'my critical abilities were silenced within the first year – not by others – but because it would be considered judgmental in that society [...] I now see homeopathy as the diseaseI think it is a form of madness' [...]  Wendy has found the current sceptical blogging about homeopathy on the internet a useful tool in 'de-programming' and re-engaging with a critical approach to examining the claims of homeopathy."

Note: there are many parallels between homeopathy and naturopathy.  And I have, under oath, labeled naturopathy "cultic mystical weirdness", I must admit.

002. parallels:

It is a fact that: 

a) ND web pages often have a "FAQs" section rhetorically posing the question 'what is the difference between homeopathy and naturopathy?'

b) naturopathy labels modern medicine 'allopathy';

c) both homeopathy and naturopathy are based on science-ejected archaic / medieval ideas such as vitalism.

003. for example,  Lee, T.S. (ND Bastyr 1986) states in "What Is Naturopathic Medicine?" [vsc 2010-12-13]:

"what is the difference between a naturopath and a homeopath? [...] homeopaths use only the homeopathic approach, whereas naturopaths train in several forms of diagnosis and treatment, one of which is homeopathy [...which] stimulates the patient's vital force to help resolve the disease [...paralleling] the philosophy of naturopathic medicine: living things have an innate ability to heal themselves [coded vitalism].  Our vital force promotes self-cleansing, self-repair, and therefore self-healing [...] naturopathic treatments [...and] techniques and methods have long been respected throughout the world.  While modern allopathic medicine is a youngster of less than 200 years old, natural medicine has been the primary medicine used by most of the human community even into the 21st Century."

Note: this result came about by using google.com and web-searching >"what is the difference" homeopathy naturopathy<.  It was the second result.
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