Nature heals not the physician is the core belief that Naturopathy treatment and practitioners propagate. In mythologies and folklore cultures Nature is always treated as Nourishing Mother Figure. The supreme healing and nourishing power lie within the Mother Nature’s womb that is why Naturopathy believes that Natural way of living and Naturopathy is an ultimate guide to live a healthy life. Before proceeding how nature heals, let’s know what is Naturopathy?
What is Naturopathy?
Naturopathy deals with curing of ailments by the Natural means. It is actually a constructive method of treatment which aims at eliminating the basic cause of disease by the sane use of the elements omnipresent in Nature. Also depicts not only a system of healing but it also carves a way of life that is compatible with the internal vital forces and natural elements comprising the human body. Morever, a complete revolution in the art and science of living.
Dr. Benedict Lust (1872-1945) coined the name Naturopathy and hence he is credited as the father of Naturopathy.
Historical Background of Naturopathy
The term ‘Naturopathy’ is of quite recent origin, but the philosophical basis and several of the methods of its treatments are ancient. In ancient Egypt, Greece and Rome, Naturopathy was widely practiced. Hippocrates, the father of medicine strongly advocated the natural ways of healing. The oldest civilization of the world, Indus valley civilization was much advanced in the natural healing system than other parts of the world. There are references in India’s ancient sacred books about the extensive use of nature’s excellent healing agents such as air, earth, water, and sun. The great baths of the Indus valley civilization that were discovered at Mohenjo-Daro in old Sindh are the testimonies of the use of water for curative purposes in the ancient civilization of the Indus Valley.
The modern methods of Naturopathy were originated in Germany in 1822, when Vincent Priessnitz established the first hydropathic establishment there. With his endeavors in water cure, the idea of drugless healing spread across the civilized world. Medical practitioners from America and other countries became his enthusiastic students and disciples. His students subsequently devised the various methods of natural healing in their own way.
Naturopathy is to Live by the Laws of Nature
Naturopathy is based upon the basic principle that man is born healthy by Nature, and he can only spend a vivacious life by living the laws of nature. Even if born with some inherited affliction, the use the natural agents of healing can eliminate it. The natural elements such as Fresh air, sunshine, a proper organic diet, healthy exercise, quality time of relaxation, constructive and positive thinking, and the right mental attitude, along with prayer and meditation all play their part in keeping a sound mind in a sound body.
The violation of Laws of Nature Results Abnormal Body Condition
Naturopathy believes that disease is actually an abnormal condition of the body which is the result of the violation of natural laws. This violation of natural laws has repercussions on the human body system that result in lower vitality, irregularities of the blood and lymph the accumulation of waste matter and toxins.
By having an unhealthy diet, the digestive system is adversely affected. Toxins accumulate, and other organs such as the bowels, kidneys, skin, and lungs are overworked and cannot get rid of these harmful substances as quickly as they are produced.
Mental and Emotional Disturbance
Besides this, mental and emotional disturbance causes imbalances of the vital electric field within which cell metabolism takes place, produce toxins. If this electric field remains undisturbed, disease-causing germs can live in it without multiplying or producing toxins. It is only when it is disturbed or when the blood is polluted with toxins, and wastes; the germs multiply and become harmful.
Basic Principles of Naturopathy treatment
The whole philosophy and practice of natural cure is based on three basic principles. These principles are based on the conclusions reached from over a century of effective Naturopathic treatment of diseases in Germany, America, and Great Britain. They have been tested and proved over and over again by the results obtained.
First and the Basic Principle of Naturopathy
The first and the most basic principle of Naturopathy is that all forms of the disease are due to the same cause, namely, the accumulations of waste materials and bodily refuse in the system. These waste materials in the healthy individual are excreted from the system through the organs of excretion. But in the diseased person, they are steadily piling up in the body through years of the wrong set of habits of living such as wrong feeding, improper care of the body and habits contributing to enervation and nervous exhaustion such as worry, overwork, and excesses of all kinds. It follows from the basic principle that the only way to cure diseases is to employ methods which will enable the system to throw off these toxin accumulations. Natural treatments are actually directed towards this end.
Second Principle of Naturopathy
The Second principle of Naturopathy is that all acute diseases such as fevers, colds, inflammations, digestive disturbances, and skin eruptions are nothing more than self-initiated efforts on the part of the body to throw off the accumulated waste materials and that all chronic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, rheumatism, asthma, kidney disorders, are the results of continued suppression of the acute diseases through harmful methods such as drugs, vaccines, narcotics and gland extracts.
Third Principle of Naturopathy
The third principle of Naturopathy is that the body contains an elaborate Self-healing mechanism which has the power to bring about a return to the normal condition of health. But the right methods should be employed to enable it. In other words, the power to cure disease lies within the body itself and not in the hands of the doctor.
Naturopathy vs Modern Medical Sciences
The modern medical system treats the symptoms and suppresses the disease but does little to ascertain the real cause. Toxic drugs which may suppress or relieve some ailments usually have harmful side-effects. Drugs usually hinder the self-healing efforts of the body and make recovery more difficult. According to the late Sir William Osler, an eminent physician and surgeon, when drugs are used, the patient has to recover twice – once from the illness, and once from the drug. Drugs cannot cure diseases; disease continues. It is only its pattern that changes. Drugs also produce dietary deficiencies by destroying nutrients, using them up, and preventing their absorption. Moreover, the toxicity they produce occurs at a time when the body is least capable of coping with it. The power to restore health thus lies not in drugs, but in nature. The approach of modern system is more on combative lines after the disease has set in, whereas Naturopathy lays greater emphasis on preventive method and adopts measures to attain and maintain health and prevent disease. The modern medical system treats each disease as a separate entity, requiring specific drug for its cure, whereas the Naturopathy treats the organism as a whole and seeks to restore harmony to the whole of the patient’s being.
Methods of Naturopathy
The Naturopathy aims at the readjustment of the human system from abnormal to normal conditions and functions, and adopts methods of cure which are in conformity with the constructive principles of nature. Such methods remove from the system the accumulation of toxic matter and poisons without in any way injuring the vital organs of the body. They also stimulate the organs of elimination and purification to better functioning. To cure disease, the first and foremost requirement is to regulate the diet. To get rid of accumulated toxins and restore the equilibrium of the system, it is desirable to completely exclude acid-forming foods, including proteins, starches and fats, for a week or more and to confine the diet to fresh fruits which will disinfect the stomach and alimentary canal. If the body is overloaded with morbid matter, as in acute disease, a complete fast for a few days may be necessary for the elimination of toxins. Fruit juice may, however, be taken during a fast. A simple rule is do not eat when you are sick, stick to a light diet of fresh fruits. Wait for the return of the usual healthy appetite. Loss of appetite is Nature’s warning that no burden should be placed on the digestive organs. Alkaline foods such as raw vegetables and sprouted whole grain cereals may be added after a week of a fruits-only diet. Another important factor in the cure of diseases by natural methods is to stimulate the vitality of the body. This can be achieved by using water in various ways and at varying temperatures in the form of packs or baths. The application of cold water, especially to the abdomen, the seat of most diseases, and to the sexual organs, through a cold sitting (hip) bath immediately lowers body heat and stimulates the nervous system.
Practice of Naturopathy
In conculsion, Simple natural method of abating fevers and reducing pain and inflammation without any harmful side-effects. Warm water applications, on the other hand, are relaxing. Other natural methods useful in the cure of diseases are air and sunbaths, exercise and massage. Air and sunbaths revive dead skin and help maintain it in a normal condition. Exercise, especially yogic asanas, promotes inner health and harmony and helps eliminate all tension; physical, mental and emotional. Massage tones up the nervous system and quickens blood circulation and the metabolic process. Thus a well-balanced diet, sufficient physical exercise, the observation of the other laws of well-being such as fresh air, plenty of sunlight, pure drinking water, scrupulous cleanliness, adequate rest and right mental attitude can ensure proper health and prevent disease.