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  • Writer's pictureLucille Locklin

Table salt vs Natrum muriaticum

Homeopath from the 19th century
James Compton Burnett is one of my favorite homeopaths from the 19th century. He attended medical school in Vienna and Glasgow, graduating in 1872. Four years later, he turned to homeopathy after observing a peer who used homeopathy at the Royal Infirmary in Edinburgh, and after conducting his own experiments. He wrote:
"Those ignorant of homœopathy laugh at it: the writer went through this laughing stage of ignorance, but did not find it very blissful, and so was constrained to put the doctrine of similars to the test of scientific experiment, and found it a true one of great practical value. Almost all homœopaths have come that way. Hence disbelieving a thing does not disprove it."

The homeopaths of Burnett's day were bitterly divided. They all believed in the fundamental philosophy of similars, or "like cures like," but there were those who could not believe in the need for dynamization—the process of dilution and succussion (shaking) that takes a substance to its infinitesimal state. The disbelievers of dynamization gave remedies that were not properly diluted, and even spoke against dilution. Burnett quotes Dr. Kidd, who infamously said, "Truth is greater than Hahnemann (*), and of late years his speculations about ... infinitesimal doses have been tacitly given up by all the most skilful and intelligent of his followers." Burnett rebutted with, "We are very apt to lose sight of the fact that our beliefs have nothing to do with truth. Truth is truth whether it be believed or not."

Burnett has written many books, one of which is a book on Natrum muriaticum (Nat-m), which is a homeopathic remedy made from basic table salt. In the book, he not only gives clinical observations about the curative effects of the remedy, but he also makes a strong case that it is the dilution of the substance—the infinitesimal dose—that brings about the cure.

He describes one case of a woman, aged 50, who had the hiccups morning, noon, and night—attacks that were very distressing and would last ten minutes at a time. They were brought on by quinine, a drug she had taken for a complaint ten years previously. The woman regularly salted her food, so had had plenty of exposure to the undiluted substance. Burnett prescribed homeopathic salt—Nat-m—since it is known to antidote the effects of quinine. By the third day, the hiccups of ten year's duration had stopped completely. Burnett comments in his book that the dynamization process "does so alter a substance that it thereby acquires a totally new power."

Burnett gives other examples of cures from Nat-m in his book, and below I've listed three more to give you a little insight into the remedy, which covers many conditions. I also want to point out that table salt (Nat-m in its raw form) is pretty much used by everyone all the time, whether they are actively salting their own food or eating a dish that someone else has salted.

Case one: A man in his mid-thirties had poor circulation (which led to chronic chilliness), sleepiness after eating, a sour taste in his mouth and black spots before his eyes. He was cured of all by Nat-m in about two weeks.

Case two: A boy, 12, had "caught a cold" in his eye and it was still painful and inflamed a month later. He had photophobia (could not look at bright light) and lacrymation (watering of the eyes). Nat-m was given three times per day and the eye was completely healed in a little over a week.
Case three: A woman in her 60s had chronic gout on her left big toe and foot. Nat-m cured her gout in four days. She was very fond of beer, and Burnett asked her to limit it, which she didn't do. But she kept the Nat-m powders on hand, and called them her "gout powders." Burnett learned from her daughter that they promptly relieved two or three similar attacks that occurred afterward, probably due to her inability to limit the beer.

Nat-m covers many conditions and has been a widely recommended homeopathic remedy since Hahnemann's time (*). Like all homeopathic remedies, it has certain characteristic keynotes that guide a homeopath to choose it over another remedy that covers the same condition. Some of the most common characteristics of Nat-m are feeling WORSE between 9-11 AM, in the sun, at the seashore, lying down, from mental exertion, and/or from consolation. The person can feel BETTER in open air, with cold bathing, going without regular meals, lying on the right side, having pressure against the back, and/or from tight clothing.

*Hahnemann is the father of homeopathy, and it would not be in existence today without him. His first book, "The Organon of Medicine," was published in 1810.
Interested in homeopathic treatment? Please seek a professional homeopath for chronic and complex issues, and do not interpret anything read here as a recommendation to take Natrum muriaticum.
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