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Finding (Proving) Homeopathic Healing Properties

Author: Anja Heij

The only way the healing properties of a homeopathic medicine can be discovered is by the system of provings.

The provings are performed by groups of healthy volunteers. To get good test results it is necessary to work with healthy people, because

  • Homeopathy administers medicines to ill people with symptoms similar to the symptoms healthy people develop if taking the substance in a large dose or frequently repeated dose.
  • If the medicines would be tested on ill people it would be very hard to say which symptoms belong to the disease of the person and which ones are caused by the raw material.

Usually the substance is taken in a low potency, a C30 or a C100. The prover will repeat the dose until he develops sick-making symptoms. Volunteering in a proving is a lot of work, because it means that twice a day the person has to write down all his symptoms. Also changes in appreciation or aversion for certain drinks, food or weathertypes have to be reported.
During the test period it is important that the prover avoids great changes in life-style, weather-changes, and mental or emotional disturbing situations. After all these changes might not only influence the test results, but also damage the condition of the prover who is already under stress because of the sick-making substance.
In the end the results of all provers are combined; from the whole of their experiences a drug-image arises.

Nowadays homeopathy focuses more on the psychological symptoms, while in older days the emphasis was on the physical expression of disease. This has led to the system of dream-provings.
In a dream-proving the healthy volunteer lays the test remedy under the pillow. In this type of provings homeopathy works with higher potentized remedies. The energy of the remedy will cause certain dreams, very different from the dreams the volunteer usually has. Often these proving-dreams are filled with symbolic images and clues related to the character of the remedy.
These provings may shed more light on the mental and emotional symptoms, but they are also much more difficult to interpret. I'm not sure if Samuel Hahnemann would find them scientific enough.