Homeopathy and science
Josef M. Schmidt

The later Hahnemann considered homeopathy the only possible and true pharmaco-therapeutics with (prospective) “mathematical” certainty of healing (Organon, §§53,109,145/1), i.e. scientific medicine par exellence.
After 200 years of history of science witnessing alleged “paradigm shifts” in ever increasing frequency, the question arises: Since any science is based upon metaphysical assumptions - is there still (or again) any consensus on those of Hahnemann's doctrine? Can we, in the 21st century, still advocate without further hesitation principles unquestioned in his time such as rationalism, empirism, strong causality, teleology of nature, and belief in progress - when we consider modern scientific standards such as reproducibility and quantifiability or postmodern challenges such as scientific pluralism, constructivism or chaos theory?
On the basis of a new approach in philosophy of nature, the lecture attempts to determine the status of homeopathy within the antagonisms between (natural) science and (natural) philosophy as well as between theory and practice, in order to facilitate both a critical, realistic and modern self-reflexion within homeopathy and a sensible line of reasoning towards conventional medicine.

PD Dr. med. Dr. phil. Josef M. Schmidt is a consultant physician of general medicine and homeopathy and assistant professor of medical history at the University of Munich. He is known for his editions of the Organon (historical-comparative edition, standard edition, new edition with synopsis and glossary), a seminal study on Hahnemann's philosophical ideas, a concise pocket textbook of homeopathy, and many other publications. From 1991 to 1992 he was research associate at the University of California, San Francisco, and since 1992 he has been lecturing history of homeopathy at the University of Munich. In 1993 he was awarded the Professor Alfons Stiegele Research Award in homeopathy. From 1995 to 2001 he co-ordinated an extensive homeopathic survey sponsored by the naturopathic hospital in Munich. He is currently teaching and researching at the Institute of Medical History of the University of Munich.

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