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[1] In 1790, Dr. Hahnemann discovered the law of similar [2] (Like Cures Like) when he said, “Substances which arouse a kind of fever extinguish the types of intermittent fevers”. But the law was published in 1796.

Disease can be cured by a medicinal substance given in micro/nano doses that produces similar symptoms in health people when given in large doses. In simple words, the medicine can cure when given in micro doses what it can cause in large doses.

Some of the examples of the law of similars are

a. An onion is a substance which makes your eyes water and your nose burn. If you are having an attack of hay fever with watering eyes and a burning nose, a homeopathic remedy made from onion called allium cepa can relieve it.

b. Poison ivy causes redness, intense itching, burning, blistering and sometimes stiff muscles. Potentised poison ivy called as rhus tox has been used for herpes, burns, eczema, allergy,  arthritis, etc.

c. When you are stung by a bee you feel a burning, stinging pain and the tissues surrounding the area swell up. Some relief is gained from applying cold to the area. If you had swollen tonsils with burning and stinging pain relieved by cold, a homeopathic remedy prepared from the same source Apis Mellificia could cure.

d. Coffee keeps people awake and alert. A remedy prepared from coffee called coffea cruda in very small doses might be appropriate for helping someone with insomnia with an overly alert mind.

e. Eyebright causes a clear and bland nasal discharge along with tears that burn and irritate the skin under the eye. The homeopathy medicine Euphrasia prepared from eyebright cures it.

f. Quinine (derived form Cinchona bark) given in daily doses to a healthy person can cause symptoms similar to malaria. Indeed, the Cinchona Officinalis, a homeopathy medicine prepared from cinchona bark, is curative in many patients with malaria.

g. White Hellebore, in large doses, causes violent purging that leads to severe dehydration-symptoms similar to cholera. Veratrum Album, a homeopathy medicine prepared from White Hellebore is effective against cholera

h. Belladonna, a homeopathy medicine, is used o treat scarlet fever, since the symptoms of belladonna poisoning closely resemble those of scarlet fever

The idea/concept of ‘law of similars’ had first been mentioned by Hippocrates (The Father of Medicine, 460-377 B.C.), then by P.A. Paracelsus (1493-1541) , and later by others.


The medical maxim of Hippocrates is being followed in homeopathy. Hippocrates said, “By similar things a disease is produced and through the application of the like it is cured”.

The application of the Law of Similars is found in chemistry, and immunology. For example, a basic principle of solvent chemistry states that a substance will be a solvent to another substance when it has a similar type of molecular bond. It has to be either similarly polar or similarly apolar, and then like will dissolve like. Immunology applies the Law of Similars to activate antibody responses with small doses of a similar substance that will evoke the allergic symptoms.

Law of similar in conventional medicine
a. Ritalin is an amphetamine (psycho-stimulant, a substance that would normally cause hyperactivity) chemically identical to cocaine. Conventional medicine gives this "stimulant" to treat hyperactivity in children
b. Radiation to treat people with cancer (radiation causes cancer)
c. The vaccines in conventional medicine is derived from Law of Similars with few differences.
d. Anti-venom against snake bite prepared from snake venom
“Why would a patient swallow a poison because he is ill, or take that which would make a well man sick."

-L.F. Kebler, M.D.



[1] JMS Schmidt, Josef M. Die philosophischen Vorstellungen Samuel Hahnemanns bei der Begründung der Homöopathie (bis zum Organon der rationellen Heilkunde, 1810). München: Sonntag, 1990, p. 9.

[2] “An essay on a new principle for ascertaining the curative powers of drugs & some examinations of the previous principle.”, Hufeland's Journal of Practical Medicine, 1796, volume-II, parts 3 & 4, pages 391-439 & 465-561.

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Comment by Dr. Nancy Malik on July 2, 2011 at 2:20pm

Dr. Arindam Dutta

I must appreciate your collection.

Comment by DR. ARINDAM DUTTA on July 1, 2011 at 10:53am

Dear Nancy,

Click on the following link-

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Comment by Dr. Nancy Malik on June 30, 2011 at 11:57pm

Dr. Arindam

Chinchona bark was to Hahnemann what the falling apple was to Newton & the swinging lamp to Galileo

Govt of India stamp1977


Dr. Rafeeque

It's true.i agree with your vies. Credit has not been given where it is due.

Comment by Dr Muhammed Rafeeque on June 29, 2011 at 1:05am

The principles of homeopathy are accepted and practiced by many including modern medical doctors. Now, whatever people say about holistic medicine and life style diseases are nothing but the words of Hahnemann, but using different terminologies. Most of the health magazines are knowingly or unknowingly using Hahnemann’s words. Still, many are treating Homeopathy like the way we Indians treat curry leaves (Murraya Koenigi): Once the curry is ready, curry leaves are thrown away!

Comment by DR. ARINDAM DUTTA on June 28, 2011 at 11:09am

“As Newton to astronomy so was Hahnemann to medicine. The modern representative of physics, he is the legitimate heir of Hippocrates, of Galen, of Paracelsus and of Sydenham, and yet he has thoroughly revolutionized the art of those illustrious men of the past. As Newton discovered the key to the motions of the celestial bodies in the law of gravitation, so Hahnemann found the key to therapeutics in the law of similars, which is the great gravitation law of physic. He has thus brought the art of medicine theoretically to perfection. All subsequent improvements must be merely in matters of detail; improvements in the working of our instruments, while the principle on which they act once discovered, remains eternally true and perfect, as Hahnemann revealed it.”

 ~The British Journal of Homoeopathy, Vol.- XVIII, 1860, Pp.- 412.

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