The story of Homeopathy
Dr. Samuel Hahnemann is known as the founder of Homeopathy. To this day, classical homeopathy still follows his teachings in the Organon very closely: the principles are the same as over 200 years ago.
He states: "The highest ideal of cure is rapid, gentle, and permanent restoration of health in the shortest, most reliable, and most harmless way."
Homeopathy is a holistic form of alternative medicine (and it can also be categorized under the wing term "naturopathy"), and so it takes the entire state of the being into account. The individual disturbance is experienced on all levels (mental, emotional, physical) and there are various ways in which this can be expressed. Therefore we say that homeopathy treats the person and not the disease. While in allopathic medicine (conventional Western Medicine) the symptoms are considered to be the disease and therefore they are targeted to be eliminated, in homeopathy the symptoms guide us to the remedy.
Homeopathy is based on the law of similars that Dr. Hahnemann (after Hippocrates in his time) came across: Like cures Like. The diseased being can heal with a substance, which, if given to a healthy individual, would produce symptoms similar to those that the sick person has developed.
We cannot say there is this remedy for this or that disease, because the remedy is chosen based on the individual and the state he is in, not the medical diagnosis. Different people with the same "disease" will likely need different remedies because they are each in a specific state. The state is what the homeopath prescribes on; this is where the disturbance happens; it affects the whole being.
How do we know which remedy may be helpful in which case? Through a proving we find out the remedy "picture". A group of individuals, as healthy as possible" will take the remedy in potentized form. While there often is strong overlap in the symptoms that the varying individuals develop, some have affinities for different aspects of the remedy, and thus we see a more complete picture when we have multiple persons proving it. My classmate and I conducted a proving for our project at the Berkeley Institute of Homeopathy, of Quercus Agrifolia Agrifolia, or Live Oak Acorn.