The Principle of Dilution in Homeopathy is related with the process known as "dynamization" or "potentization", where a remedy is diluted in alcohol or water. It is then shaken vigorously against an elastic body, the process of which is known as succussion. Hahnemann, the father of homeopathy, realized that the remedies prepared produce symptoms similar to the disease. Therefore, powerful dose of the remedy will further aggravate the disease. As a result, he advocated that the remedy should be diluted to the extent, where the symptoms of the disease fail to be experienced.
This explains the Law of Principle of Dilution. Homeopaths are of the
view that during the process of potentization, the vital energy of the
diluted substance is activated, which is released by the vigorous
shaking. Thus, for this purpose Hahnemann used a special wooden striking
board, covered with leather and horse hair on one side. However,
insoluble substances like quartz and oyster shell are diluted by
grinding them with lactose. This process is known as trituration.
Following the principle of dilution there are three potency scales in
use by the Homeopathic practitioners. Hahnemann pioneered and always
preferred the centesimal or "C scale". According to the C
scale, 1 part of a substance is diluted in 100 parts of diluent, at each
stage. Consequently, a 2C dilution is the one where one part of a
substance is diluted to one hundred part and then one part of the
diluted solution is again diluted to one hundred part. This puts it to,
one part of the substance to ten thousand part of the diluent.
All the solutions follow the same pattern under the C scale. Thus, in
homeopathy the more dilute the solution, the higher its potency. Also,
higher potencies are considered to be stronger deep acting remedies.
However, Hahnemann advocated 30C dilutions for most purposes (a dilution
by a factor of 1060). With this it is agreeable, that on an average a
12C solution contains only about one molecule of the original substance.
Considering such high levels of dilution, it is convincing that
homeopathic remedies contain overwhelming quantities of only water (or
Whatever might be the case, homeopathic practitioners are of the strong
belief that these water solutions retrieve few 'essential property' of
the original substance, as a result of the shaking after each dilution.
Even Hahnemann was of the belief that the process of dynamization,
releases a "spirit like" healing force from within the
substance. According to this school of thought, even if each and every
molecule of the substance is removed from the water, its spiritual
healing force still remains intact.
Later, some homeopaths developed a decimal scale (D or X), which puts
down, diluting a substance to ten times its original volume at each
stage. Thus, decimal scale dilution is half as compared to C scale.
Though Hahnemann never used this scale, it was widely popularly in the
19th century and is still in use in Europe. During the last ten years of
his life, Hahnemann also developed a scale called quintamillesimal (Q)
or LM scale, which employed diluting a 1 part of drug in 50,000 parts of
diluent. Therefore, a Q scale dilution is 2.35 times that of a C scale