The Healing Power of Nature is one of the key principles of naturopathic medicine.
The term vis medicatrix naturae which means the healing power of nature was established by Hippocrates to denote the body's ability to heal itself or innate healing. This healing power is an inherent self-organizing, ordered healing process of living systems which establishes, maintains and restores health.The Vis Medicatrix Naturae is the power of nature to heal, an extension of creator consciousness or cosmic consciousness. While everything on the planet has become somewhat disharmonious, this energetic template or spiritual blueprint is held, inviolable, within our nature and is made avilable as a exemplar during the process of healing.
"The problem of the healing power of nature is a great, perhaps the greatest of all problems, which has occupied the physician for thousands of years. Indeed . . . the aims and limits of therapeutics are determined by its solution."
Although nature doctors, including naturopathic doctors, have been the greatest champions of this doctrine, the mystery surrounding the healing power of the body has been part of medicine since the beginning of time. The medical historian, Max Neuburger stated
- There are innate or natural laws surrounding life, health and disease. These laws involve man living in harmony with nature and recognizing the wisdom of the body to heal itself.
- It is the naturopathic doctor's role to support, facilitate and augment this process by identifying and removing obstacles to health and recovery, and by supporting the creation of a healthy internal and external environment.
- Symptoms are often the manifestation of the body's attempt to defend and heal itself. When the root cause of the symptoms and the obstacles to cure are identified and addressed the body will often be able to initiate the healing process on its own.
- With the use of natural therapies, such as herbs, foods, water, fasting and tissue manipulation, the vis medicatrix naturae, or the healing power of the body, is supported.
Examples of the vis medicatrix naturae
- when we cut our finger the wound automatically starts to heal
- fever is a natural response to the flu
- vomiting or diarrhea are the body's way of responding to food poisoning
- fractures heal often on their own
- after major surgeries or treatments, such as chemotherapy or radiation, the body will initiate healing
Aim Of Naturopathic Treatments
- Treat the patient; not the disease
- Remove obstacles to healing by identifying and treating the cause of disease
- Direct the vital force to stimulate the body's own defences and healing ability
- Decrease a person's susceptibility to disease