Vol. 20 No. 3 June 2000 – The Wo-wo Effect

There was once a young couple who were adamant their little son would not use “baby talk”, and they avoided all such language. The little lad had a soft-toy dog, called as you may imagine, Dog. It was always called Dog, even in charmingly clear diction by the child. But then one day, when out in his pushchair clutching Dog, an old woman, a total stranger, said to the child, “Is this your wo-wo?” Ever after that the child called his toy Wo-wo, to his parents’ embarrassment.Something like this seems to happen a lot in homœopathy. Seemingly intelligent people, properly taught in bona fide homœopathy and knowing what was the right thing to say have brief exposure to an exotic stranger telling them something different, not the proper thing at all, and from that point onward they abandon their former practices and beliefs and parrot what the stranger told them. Yes, folks, it is the Wo-wo phenomenon. Homœopathic literature overseas, and internet sources, are full of strangeness that no matter how odd attracts a following – including individuals who I imagine have had a fairly good education in traditional homœopathy.

Here’s a good example … One day browsing the web I came across what I thought was an April Fool spoof. It said that if you run out of a proper homœopathic remedy you can write its name and potency on a piece of paper and put it in a pocket, or pin it on the left side of the patient’s chest. Be careful not to write down too high a potency it warned.
But my laughter died when I read on and found this practice was promoted by a person describing herself as a classical homœopath, and it was all dead serious.

And even more scary were numerous reports from people claiming to have tried such “paper remedies” as EXCESS FAT 30c to lose weight, INSUFFICIENT FUNDS 30c to boost real estate sales, COMPUTER WORKING 200c for a hard-drive problem, CAR START 30c for a sick vehicle, COURAGE 30c for public speaking, TOTAL RECALL 30c for an exam, and the more prosaic HEADACHE 30c, VERTIGO 30c, ITCHY FEET 30c, etc. One person found AGNUS CASTUS 30c gave ill-effects whereas AGNUS CASTUS LM1 felt good.

To say the least, and the kindest, this is not homœopathy, it is wrong to call it such, and very wrong to call yourself a classical homœopath if you encourage the use of talismans posing as a form of homœopathic prescribing.
The woman I refer to is Eileen Nauman, who plans to run a course in New Zealand. Let us hope she does not trigger examples of the Wo-wo effect.

But wait, there’s more . . . . For people who find writing remedy names on slips of paper too difficult, Gillian Lee, owner and manager of a business in England called White Mountain, has had made for sale a device looking like a pocket-size tape recorder into which the surreal homœopath had merely to speak the name of a remedy and its potency – then lactose tablets in a well inside it will be made into the remedy thus spoken. You can read about it at www.users.globalnet.co.uk/whtmnt/about.htm.

A firm in America was in trouble recently for selling allegedly homœopathic medicines which were in fact made by a similar radionic/psionic device, in this case employing a “magnetogeometric process.” The culprit is Celletech Ltd, of Tasman St, Madison, Wisconsin.

It is to be hoped this place was not the source of remedies now spread around the globe, passed on by less-than-scrupulous pharmacies. Let’s be careful out there, people!

Bruce Barwell

Posted in Editorials - 2000