In the world of homeopathy, when we talk about the homeopathic remedy made from gold Aurum metallicum, we refer to it as Aurum and pronounce it or-um. Aurum is most well known as a treatment for anxiety and depression. However, like all remedies, it has a much broader set of indications than that.
One of the many sweeping statements made about a person who may benefit from the remedy Aurum comes from the British Homeopathic Association. They say: Aurum is the sage, the wise counsellor, who has experienced all things and attained wisdom.
Traditionally what is Aurum metallicum used for?
- Photophobia; eye inflammation; pains around the eyes
- Bone pains, worse at night
- Sciatica; pain in the heels
- Obstinate nasal obstruction; sinus problems
- Sleeping problems
- The person may have a feeling of isolation, joylessness and chronic fatigue.
- Eating problems; anorexia nervosa.
- Depression running in the family.
- The choice of this remedy is based on these and other individual characteristics and symptoms.
Is there any more recent Homeopathy research about depression?
In a 2019 study by The Aurum Project and led by Dr Celeste Salter and Dr David Levy, we were able to understand why people visit homeopaths in Australia. Data was collected over a two-month period, including demographics of: age, gender, ethnicity, state or territory of residence, as well as basic homeopathic data: name of condition, medical diagnosis, prescription, and dosage. It was found that 27.6% of people visiting a homeopath do so for their mental health. View the National Survey of Homeopathy in Australia results.
A study in Brazil, found that individualized homeopathy is as effective and is safer than Prozac in the treatment of acute depression. The authors found that “unmet needs of the conventional treatment may contribute to the patients’ search for alternatives: depression is one of the leading causes for use of complementary and integrative medicine”.
The research was conducted with 91 people who suffered from moderate to severe depression. They were broken up into two groups. One group randomly receiving an individually chosen homeopathic remedy and the other group receiving fluoxetine (Prozac).
Aurum foliatum was one of the twenty different homeopathic remedies which were chosen for treatment.
MADRS depression scores were used in the study. MADRS is a commonly used observer rated depression scale, with a score of 32 representing “severe depression”. The average MADRS of patients in this study was 29.
The MADRS scores from the two groups suggested that the two methods of treatment are equally effective. There were also no significant differences between the percentages of response or remission rates in both groups. The study also found a higher but non-significant percentage of patients treated with Prozac reported troublesome side effects. Also there was a trend toward greater treatment interruption for adverse effects in the Prozac group.
Was Napolean Bonaparte an Aurum individual?
In the literature of homeopathy, authors are fond of writing about remedies by doing a profile of famous people in history.
It is claimed that Napoleon Bonaparte was an Aurum metallicum individual. One writer says the following characteristics matched Napoleon:
- They will usually reach senior positions. Their behaviour is changeable and sometimes humourless – they have a tendency towards anger.
- These are individuals with many good qualities: they are intelligent, well-mannered, honest, responsible, hard-working and successful.
- They value gold (money) – material possessions are important to them, which is why they work so hard.
- Work is the most important aspect of the Aurum individual’s life.
- When they are unbalanced they lack self-confidence, are self-critical, have strong feelings of failure and indignation, feel guilty and as though they have done everything wrong, even if this does not represent reality.
- When they are in this frame of mind they become irritable, aggressive and enraged, especially if somebody contradicts them.
- Over time, this irritability is internalised and the Aurum person falls into a deep depression.
Aurum metallicum as a homeopathic remedy for children
The signs and symptoms of depression may be more easily identified in adults than in children. However, many kids feel that the load on their shoulders is too big and many of these kids have trouble putting those feelings into words.
George Vithoulkis has an insightful description of children who may need Aurum. Children who would benefit from the remedy Aurum, tend to be serious and they may have many of the following characteristics:
- Difficulty establishing close friendships.
- Ambitious at school and reach some higher level of prominence in their class
- Sensitivity and refinement at the same time.
- Their weak point is at the emotional level.
- They are vulnerable emotionally, though they are intellectually quite strong.
- They look like they are quite OK but inside they might have an extreme sensitivity
- They are sensitive to a critical remark by a teacher or fellow students, about homework, schoolwork, etc. Critical remarks will have a tremendous and immediate effect upon these children.
- Another child will not be so significantly affected by so slight a remark as is the Aurum child. But the Aurum child may not even show his reaction.
- “Instead, an internal doubt about his own abilities begins to grow, and he begins to feel that the world is not a fit place in which to live. He will not express his doubts and concerns but will continue trying to attain the goals of his ambition – further education, money, positions of prominence, etc. Yet throughout his entire life a sense of bitterness remains, and he continues to feel that the world is an uninviting place. The world seems to him an environment in which it is not worth living. Eventually this attitude leads to deep depression” says George Vithoulkis.
- Emotionally these children are not expressive
- When they have grown up and started a career and reached some successful position in a company (as an example) they seem to get affection through the esteemed position they are in.
- Children will enjoy and ‘need’ praise from parents, teachers, and, later, society. They need this affection and approval in order to survive.
- They may develop what looks like exaggerated self-confidence.
- They may start to believe that they deserve the praise and comments they receive.
- But with the first blow (or grief) to their self confidence they become very upset and frustrated.
You can read more about the Materia Medica of Aurum in Essence of Materia Medica By Prof. George Vithoulkas.
Consultation questions which consider Aurum metallicum for depression
- What is your family medical and emotional history?
- When did your depression begin?
- What was going on in your life at that time? This is one of the first questions a homeopath will ask when someone is seeking help for depression.
- What time of day do you feel at your best and worst?
- How is your thirst and appetite?
- What kinds of food do you love or even crave? What kinds of food do you hate or avoid because it upsets your system?
- How is your sleep? Any dreams that repeat?
- What kind of weather really does or doesn’t suit you?
- If the consult is for a child then it may be important to know the mother’s physical and emotional state before and during pregnancy; and how was the birthing experience.
- How organised and neat are you?
- Any anxieties, fears and even phobias?
The questions are important but may seem unrelated to a persons mood and the answers are as diverse as the patients themselves. Perhaps someone has felt depressed all their life due to hereditary factors. Maybe it began after a major and traumatic event in their life, such as divorce, death of a loved one, or loss of employment. Or possibly as a result of hormonal imbalance during puberty, after childbirth and during menopause. The answer to the origins of any depression may provide an important clue to finding an individual homeopathic remedy.
The person may or may not be an Aurum metallicum personality. There are many different possible homeopathic remedies for depression. To work out the best homeopathic remedy for a persons mood or depression requires the education and experience of a trained professional and homeopathy may be just one part of a teamwork approach to helping a person back to feeling in a balanced state.
So what is the best answer when someone has heard about it and asks how to take Aurum metallicum for depression? The answer always remains the same: Chronic and serious issues such as depression and not within the realm of a home prescriber. This remains true, even though there are great Homeopathic remedies such as Arnica and Hypericum which can be used at home after the person learns how to use them.
The Aurum Project has undertaken research to measure the demographics of homeopaths and their patients in Australia. In this study, not only is mental health the most common reason to visit a Homeopath, it is by far the most widespread. Patients visit almost three times more for mental health purposes, compared with the next greatest singular reason – skin conditions.
If you would like to consider consulting a professional homeopath please visit the directory of homeopaths in Australia.
Gold as medicine and part of religion
Since ancient times, gold has been used as a medicine and it has been a treatment in the past for syphilis. Today, gold is reappearing in treatments for cancer and rheumatoid arthritis. It is also being used for diagnostic procedures. For example, gold nanoparticles have used in the diagnosis of malaria. The tests use tiny amounts of gold to identify patients who have malaria in less than 20 minutes. These gold particles help to produce a simple colour change to detect the presence of malaria in the patient’s blood sample.
Gold is a precious metal which the Ancient Egyptians mined in large quantities and used to decorate the temples of the gods and pharaohs tombs. Alongside the Valleys of the Kings and Queens a special village of craftsmen was created, the Place of Truth. These men and women fashioned the elaborate tombs and offerings to the dead.
Gold has always played an important part in religion and spirituality. One only has to look at churches, mosques and temples to see huge amounts of gold offered up to God.
Gold does not tarnish unlike many other metals, symbolising its purity and incorruptibility. It is a regal metal, one that is used to symbolise love and fidelity in the wedding bands. Aurum is the patriarch of the family, the king of the castle. Aurum is honourable, trustworthy and proud.
Why are we called the Aurum Project?
The name was chosen for many different reasons. One reason simply is the beautiful golden colour but more importantly as practitioners we are impressed by the profound effects the remedy can have on people and their symptoms. The power of the remedy is often talked about in homeopathic textbooks. One of the most powerful ways that we can serve our community, is to support and promote research about the use of homeopathic remedies.
The Aurum Project aims to provide education and promote research about how homeopathy may be used in the treatment of childhood complaints including behaviour problems, anxiety and depression and physical complaints.
Since you’re here…
More people than ever before are reading The Aurum Project blog. There is a surge of interest in natural therapies research. But grants or support from funding bodies is hard to come by. So you can see why we would like to ask for your help. The Aurum Project is an Australian independent research group with charity status. Our research takes a lot of time, money and hard work to keep pushing forward. But we love it because we believe our work is important and we’ve been told by parents over and over again that they believe what we do is important too. For a donation of for example, $50 per month you can help support us to produce top quality peer reviewed scientific data for the community.
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