The process of creating a homeopathic remedy
80% of homeopathic remedies are made from the crude material of specific plants. However, others are made from specific minerals, salts, and insects. A very few are made from animal, and even disease material itself. All remedies start with the basic crude material of which the remedy is made. However, most remedies have very little or none of the original crude material left by the end of its processing.
This is the process we use:
Creating a Mother Tincture
Using the example of remedies made from plant sources, the first step is to create what is called a mother tincture. Homeopathic pharmacies start with gathering the crude material from a specific plant in a specific season, source location, bloom-time, and quality of condition.
A mother tincture made from a specific plant source is processed by macerating the plant, (or a particular part of a plant) then letting it soak in an alcohol and water solution for quite some time.
The macerated plant, alcohol, and water mixture is stored in a dark place to prevent light from changing the chemical properties.
The soaking lasts long enough to fully draw the properties of the plant into the water and alcohol solution. The water draws into itself the chemical properties from the crushed plant material over time. The alcohol is primarily used as an astringent to help draw substances out of the plant and as a preservative so the plant material doesn’t rot or breed bacteria. Alcohol does however draw different constituents of the plant than water does.
When ready, this solution is strained from the course plant material (pulp) leaving a tinctured solution saturated with the chemical properties of the original plant.
This tinctured solution is now called a mother tincture and delineated with the symbol ∅, or MT.
Once the pharmacy has created a homeopathic mother tincture ∅, they then process this tincture (potentize it) to the desired strength we are going to use.
Mother Tinctures ∅ are usable as themselves, but have more of an herbal or nutritional action depending on the substance. ∅’s have crude material and are not generally considered as safely or gently used as potentized remedies. The reason ∅s are not considered as safe or gentle as potentized remedies will be obvious in our description of potentiation by sucussion discussed in this article shortly.
Mother Tinctures ∅ are generally not used for the same response as a potentized remedy. As an example St. John’s Wort in herbal form or tincture may be used by an herbalist for depression. When potentized homeopathy recognizes St. John’s Wort as a fantastic pain reliever. St. John’s Wort in certain specific conditions has been quoted as, “quite superseding the use of Morphia to relieve pain!”
Please remember it has to be specific symptoms and conditions for a homeopathic to relieve pain. These are not pain medications!
However, I have many times seen an individual who has gone through traumatic surgery or injury using pharmaceutical medications and suffering still from great pain. They will then choose to use Hypericum which is the scientific name for St. John’s Wort in homeopathic potency of 200C or 1M. Multiple times I’ve seen people relieved from their pain quickly (sometimes within 20 min.) and shortly letting go of their no longer required pharmaceutical pain reliever altogether.
This is how a homeopathic pharmacy will potentize from a ∅:
Potentiation By Succussion
Our previously discussed mother tincture ∅ is put through a very basic and simple process of being potentised.
One drop of our mother tincture ∅ is put into a vial and then nine drops of a diluting material is added (again an alcohol and water solution). This mixture is succussed (shaken with impact).
Succussion is essential. It has been observed that just diluting the material without succussion is ineffectual for making homeopathic remedies. At every dilution we must shake the solution violently with impact.
Succussion can be as simple as holding the vile containing the solution and pounding it against a soft covered book on a desk (with a lid on, of-course). Homeopathic pharmacies use machines. Some pharmacies still do them traditionally by hand. I’ve seen both work very well.
Succussion is done at a minimum of 100 times per each level of dilution starting from the very beginning.
After our dilution of one drop of our ∅ then adding to it our 9 drops of the alcohol water we succuss it.
We now have a 1X potency.
X stands for ten in Roman numerals. To make a 2X potency we take one part of our previously made 1X potency and add it to nine more parts of the diluting solution (alcohol, and water) in a vial with a lid, and then succus it again.
Our process of dilution and succussion continues until our desired potency (strength) of the remedy is attained.
Common Potencies And Their Lack Of Toxicity
Common potencies used in homeopathic remedies usually begin around 6X. The dilution ratio of 6X is one part of the original mother tincture to one million parts of the diluting material.
So, only one part of our original mother tincture ∅ is in every million parts of our alcohol/water dilution. This is what makes homeopathic remedies extremely safe.
Consider how extreme further dilutions are!
6X is already extremely dilute, and considered a low potency. More frequently used potencies are; 12X, which is one part to 1,000,000,000,000 and 30X which is one part to this astrological number: 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000.
Get the point?(!!!)
These are what we call infinitesimal doses.
They can not cause toxicity or harm anyone.*
Yet these remedies are effective, at times acting with a stronger response, faster action, and definitely more specific action than common drugs.
What is acting however, is not actually the remedy. The remedy is just a catalyst. It’s the persons immune system– their energy and body processes which are responding. A dilution that small can not push your body to do anything. It can only suggest, which gives your body the choice to change or not.
It has been proven that our bodies produce, use, and communicate with infinitesimal amounts of chemicals and organic compounds (consider pheromones as an example). In using micro-doses, homeopathy is a science working in conjunction with your body’s own chemical and immune processes.
What still gives me chills about homeopathy after over two decades is how we can have this intensity of effectiveness without any fear of toxic side-effects.
Common C Potencies
C potencies may be more common when purchased over-the-counter.
Common potencies found in our health food stores are 6C, 12C, or 30C.
C is 100 as expressed in Roman Numerals.
The difference in C Potencies is one part of the Mother Tincture is added to 99 parts of diluting solution (water, and alcohol) and succussed for a 1C potency. C potencies already start with a much greater dilution to begin with and exponentially escalate with each dilution.
C potencies are more diluted than X potencies, but empirically no less effective.
** As practitioners we also use what is referred to as Q potencies. You will not find Q potencies commonly in stores. As practitioners we use these with even greater dilution starting at 1:50,000 ratio. We find Q potencies of particular value with extremely sensitive individuals.**
Potentiation By Trituration
Trituration is the beginning process we use for solid substances which cannot be macerated easily like our example of the plant material above. A substance like gold can not be expected to mix readily into a water alcohol solution unless processed to do so.
Trituration is quite simply a grinding and pounding of the hard crude substance together with it’s diluting material (this time powdered sugar) in a mortar and pestle. This trituration process is done for these hard substances up to an 8X, or 9C dilution. Beyond this point hard substances have been proven to be small and fine enough to be succussed effectively.
There is an extreme amount of pounding and grinding in order to make the hard substance fine enough to be used in solution. The same dilution process applies for each potency, 1 part to 9 for X potencies, and 1part to 99 for C potencies.
Liquids, Creams, Gels, Pellets, or Tablets
Homeopathic remedies in their final products come in liquids, creams, gels, pellets, or tablet form.
A homeopathic remedy is already in its liquid form when processed as above.
For creams and gels the remedy can easily be added to any cream or gel base from the liquid.
Pellets and tablets are a little different from each other:
Pellets are made of hard sucrose, which is sugar. The sugar makes homeopathic remedies sweet and desirable to take (keep out of reach from children, or you‘ll lose your remedy).
The remedy in its liquid form has to be at least 87% alcohol in order to be sprayed onto the sugar pellet without dissolving it. Too much water and the pellet would dissolve back into liquid.
Tablet forms of remedies are usually softer and made of lactose (milk sugar) and the remedy is actually impacted into the tablet and not just covering the outside as with pellets.
If a remedy is in pellet form, traditionally, we do not touch it because the remedy was sprayed on the outside and it could easily be rubbed off. If taken in tablet form they can be touched, because the remedy has been impacted into the tablet.
Creams and gels are touched when they are used for local application on the exterior. Creams and gels will commonly be in very low potency, usually around a 1X which is only a 10% dilution. Creams and gels are not recommended for internal use at all.
Sugar pellets or tablets are meant for oral use, again traditionally received under the tongue.
Enjoy your remedies!
*Warning: I’ve had clients infrequently be warned by uneducated medical doctors and some uninformed alternative practitioners concerning the safety of homeopathic remedies. A client of mine was literally told that homeopathic remedies could cause liver damage by her medical practitioner, and another by his acupuncturist. Now where would that come from? We’re talking about far less toxicity than the water you drink, or the air you breathe.
Please understand, concerning the use of homeopathic remedies, you are far more educated than a standard western medical practitioner just from reading this article. Responsibility for your health is always up to you. They can only practice what they know. On the other hand, many pharmaceutical drugs commonly cause liver damage and we can understand the misconception when uninformed.