|Interview to Diagnosis Newspaper by Nancy Christidi|
INTERVIEW WITH MR GEORGE VITHOULKAS
By Nancy Christidi
• Mr Vithoulkas, you turned to homeopathy because of your poor state of health as a child. Today you are referred to as ‘Homeopathy’s reformer of the century’. Has there ever been a moment within your life as a scientist when you have regretted it?
However, this is nothing compared to the tens of thousands of cases of chronic diseases that we have seen, and that have been cured. There is no greater satisfaction for anyone involved in teaching this type of medicine than seeing people who have been suffering for years being cured.
• You have declared that homeopathy ‘belongs to pure medicine and differs only in its therapeutic approach to both patients and states where conventional medicine has poor results or none at all’. How can one define ‘pure medicine’?
If you had to choose between a form of medical treatment which restores your health without any side effects, and another form of treatment that may treat certain states but that often negatively affects or even disturbs some other part of your organism, which of the two methods would you chose?
You would certainly choose the first method.
Should we not therefore maintain that this is a pure and effective medical method? This is what I have said.
The correct expression is, perhaps, that a homeopathic approach is part of what one could call a genuine system of therapeutics, and that it is homeopathy’s results that give it the right to be included there.
• Last April, an editor from ‘The Times’ used the word ‘voodoo’ to characterise homeopathy. The article was published in a Greek newspaper. To what extent do such publications alienate patients from homeopathy, and how can the homeopathic community react to them?
It was therefore to be expected that ‘the hairs on his head’ should ‘rise’ and for him to write, quite understandably, that it all sounded like voodoo.
Such mad ideas are presented on a daily basis by irresponsible individuals, who appear to be taking advantage of the fact that there is a lack of legislation. They gamble on the ignorance and trust of today’s patients, who are continually searching, within the chaotic world of alternative therapies, for treatments with the least pain and the best results.
•One could say that the strictest critics of Homeopathy are conventional doctors. What does conventional medicine have to lose, and what can it gain, from acceptance by and cooperation with homeopathy?
• There are, of course, certain questions of a practical nature, when we talk of cooperation between homeopathy and conventional medicine. For instance, how homeopathy could contribute in dentistry?
• In a past interview you said that the action of homeopathic medicine’s mechanism was the same as that of the placebo effect. Is it not true that such a declaration strengthens the ‘accusations’ of auto-suggestive therapy?
A similar mobilizing effect takes place with homeopathic remedies. The difference lies in the fact that this mechanism is only set off in exceptional circumstances, kindled by a strong positive feeling. This type of mobilization of the organism can even happen due to deep passion, where an individual who falls in love may suddenly find that his disturbed state of health has been cured. These cases, however, are rare, and in the case of a relapse these organisms cannot be cured.
Homeopathic remedies mobilize the mechanism in a similar way, but in this case it happens whether the patient wants it to or not. The vibrations which the‘true’ remedy brings to the organism are similar to the placebo, but much stronger and not dependent on whether the patient who is receiving the vibrations believe in it.
In a placebo phenomenon the organism’s vibrations, which originate in the patient’s conviction that he will get better with the fictitious remedy, are usually small. Therefore only minor disturbances can be cured, and mostly for a short period of time, while homeopathic remedies, which can be repeated when necessary according to the doctor’s judgement, are a powerful therapeutic medium which can cure a deeply disturbed organism’s health.
• There are many people who divide Homeopathy into Classical and Modern. Does this division refer to the choice of remedies, or are there also other differences?
This process of discovering the particular remedy is a difficult and time-consuming one. It requires a great specialisation on the part of the doctor, as well as a large amount of time, to take down the patient’s history in order for all the necessary information to be collected. The information must then be correctly analysed and collated in order for the correct remedy to be found.
These difficulties have given rise to an easier way. Instead of searching for the personal remedy – or ‘a needle in a haystack’ – ten, fifteen or even twenty remedies are given together, after taking the patient’s history rapidly and superficially, with the hope that the true remedy will be among the fifteen or twenty.
This is what the so-called polypharmacists do, in contrast to the unicists, or classicists, who apply homeopathy correctly. The aim of these variations is apparently to simplify difficulties, but when they do occasionally crop up, the results are dismal.
My own intervention from the 1960’s onwards has been to bring homeopathy back to its proper origins. What was I supposed to do in order not to displease the homeopathic pharmaceutical industries that, instead of selling twenty or thirty remedies, were only selling one? This conflict is often taken advantage of by clever representatives who say that the homeopaths cannot agree among themselves, let them make up their minds first and then we’ll see! These discussions to my mind are excuses to delay recognition.
• Prevention is a major subject for discussion in the National Health Service. What is homeopathy’s role in the prevention of serious diseases, such as hypertension, diabetes or depression that are such serious problems in today’s world?
On the other hand conventional medicine waits for a pathology to appear quite clearly before it can intervene. Homeopathy intervenes even when functional signs are presented by the organism. It can therefore prevent further developments.
• You have defined, as a measuring unit for human health, ‘the degree of creativity, both for the good of the individual and the good of the whole’. Do you believe that society, as a whole, can be helped by Homeopathy, and how?
Homeopathy, by bringing people back to health, can help society to live more peacefully and cooperatively, since such a society’s fabric will be made up of balanced persons and not of ‘monsters’ who are desperately trying to devour each other for the sole purpose of personal gain.
• ‘Humanity has suffered many great catastrophes thanks to the selfishness of individuals in positions of power’, you wrote in one of your books. What is the relationship of Homeopathy and Politics?
This is the reason why I have also referred to the fact that conventional medicine does not have to fear the spread of homeopathy. Conventional medicine, with its ‘violent’ medicines (antibiotics, cortisone, hormones, psychotropic drugs), suits a world that is ‘violently’ antagonistic and individualist.
Politics and politicians will continue, for a long time yet, to determine developments not only in the social, economical and military spheres but also in the medical one.
• There have been occasional discussions about vaccinations in childhood. Homeopathy has not yet given a clear answer as to whether it is for or against. Do you believe that children’s vaccinations are necessary or do you think that they could be avoided with the use of homeopathy?
•You support the legislation of Homeopathy in Greece. The first step took place last May, with the founding of the Post-Graduate Department of Holistic Alternative Therapeutic Systems at the University of the Aegean. I presume that this development has proved satisfactory.
This does not however mean that the subject is now resolved or that Homeopathy has been properly recognised in all European countries.
I am afraid that this will take a long time!
• Do you believe that, now that doctors and dentists will be participating in this post-graduate course, relations between conventional and homeopathic medicine will improve?
If you asked me whether I will be alive for this last stage, my answer would definitely be no.
• Do you believe that at some point Universities will open their doors to Homeopathy? Do you think that Homeopathy will ever succeed in being recognised as a medical specialisation?
The full recognition of homeopathy will only come much later, when our society develops and evolves, through the experience of pain and unhappiness that will have been caused by myriads of erroneous choices, and when a period of silence and meditation will finally and necessarily bring about a state of global co-existence and peace. How long do we have to wait for this to happen? Possibly several centuries.
•You have lately been living in Alonissos permanently, where you teach at the Academy for Classical Homeopathy, founded by yourself. Would you say that you have chosen to remove yourself from a ‘diseased’ Greek society and from the ‘western’ way of life?
•Greek society has ignored your work and your input to this day, despite the fact that you have won international recognition. Do you mind this?
An example of this is the founding of the Post-Graduate Department at the University of the Aegean.
On the other hand I do not expect a lot from these governments that are so closely linked to the media, particularly to T.V.
However, as you said, there have been many important awards in my life and I do not feel any need for other ones. For me the greatest satisfaction would be to see this system of treatment being properly established in its true form and with all its possibilities, without the fear of returning to a state of chaos such as I encountered in 1960, when I first came into contact with Homeopathy.
•Is there a further step for you to take in your life? What could such a step be for a respected scientist such as yourself?