15 Aug Principles of natural medicine
Holistic medicine is rooted in some core values. These guiding principles are underneath our practices of natural medicine, specifically naturopathic & herbal medicine, but it’s clear they are also present in traditional medicines such as Ayurvedic and Chinese medicines. Regardless of the modality, these act as a guide to life in general, and can come into play in the garden, when you’re listening to a friend’s troubles or processing your own. Run them past these principals as an audit of integrity.
First Do No Harm – Primum Non Nocere:
‘First no hurt’. This is a harm reduction principle; the road of least harm. Sometimes we can’t fix the issue we’re faced with, but what we can do is take steps towards less pain and suffering. Similarly, in medicine this means we utilise the least toxic treatment possible. Hence, if there is a gentle and safe option; take this path we guide our clients down.
The Healing Power of Nature – Vis Mediatrix Naturae:
This one’s our favourite, if you’re allowed favourites.. It translates to ‘want to mediate with nature’. What this means is to look to the patterns and forces of the environment around us, and see ourselves as a part of it. There is a balance and perfection throughout nature, whole and complete in itself. Likewise, we are not made apart from nature, rather a part of nature. As a result, to trust in nature’s medicine, is to trust in ourselves and the wisdom of the body. There is an inherent ability of the organic to be organic and heal itself. Above all, we trust in our client’s body’s inherent ability to communicate with itself and heal itself.
Identify and Treat the Causes – Tolle cuasum:
This literally means to ‘remove or take away cause’, meaning to consider what’s underneath, not just want is presenting to us. Often a root cause is propelling a whole dis-ease state or issue in our lives, rippling out new issues all around in an effort to balance. In contrast, without identifying this firstly, we are merely dealing with surface level symptoms. As a result we only ever deal with the reactions not the root. Therefore it will present again and again, shooting back up from the ground. We have to pull it out by the root.
Treat the Whole Person – Tolle totum:
To ‘remove or take away all’, means to remove all hindrances in the way of healing. Rather than seeing our client’s as a sum of their parts, we must see the whole person as a integrated unit. This involves taking all aspects of Self into consideration; the emotional, the physical, the spiritual, the environment we live in.
Doctor as Teacher – Docere:
‘Teach’. This one’s pretty easy; don’t create dependence. As facilitators of healing we aren’t the healers themselves, the client’s are. Certainly we must teach the individual ways to heal themselves utilising diet, food, exercise, and life skills. But we are merely educating our clients back into their own power.
Prevention – Prevention is the best medicine:
Medicine is best utilised preventatively! Keeping it simple. Health is an art.