Reviewed by Steven Cartwright
The Society of Homeopaths
Reprinted with permission.
"Insights into the Consciousness of Snake Remedies comprehensively fills the gap in our current homeopathic materia medica of the order Ophidia. If there is anything you wanted to know about the place of snakes in homeopathy this is where you will find it clearly and extensively set out. The author, Dr. Sadhana Thakkar, is a graduate of the University of Bombay now living and working in California. Her wealth of experience shines through in her writing and is coupled with an accessible style and format which makes the book easy to read and use in practice.
Split into essentially two sections the first part of her book begins by discussing ways of studying remedies in general and then quickly moves on to apply those methods to studying snakes and the remedies made from them. Dr. Thakkar looks at all the biological and behavioral aspects of snakes – their morphology, digestion, skin, reproductive and nervous system, habitats, intelligence and survival strategies, including venoms. Comparative and differential studies presented in the form of tables throughout makes for fascinating reading, particularly in relation to the effects of different snake venoms whether myotoxic, haemotoxic or neurotoxic.
The material in section one provides an essential basis for assimilating the following section on materia medica and shows how an understanding of snake biology can illuminate our understanding of snakes as medicines.
Section two looks at no less than fourteen different homeopathic snake remedies including some I have never used such as Bitis arientans, Hydrophis cyanocinctus and Daboia Russelli. Many examples such as Lachesis Muta, Naja tripudians and Crotalus horridus are examined in great detail with differential diagnoses and case studies. Even lesser used remedies such as Crotalus cascavella, Cenchris contortrix, Bothrops lanceolatus, Toxicophis pugnax, Vipera Berus and Elaps corrallinus are extensively examined and where homeopathic information is scarce as with Bungarus fascinatus, Hydrophis cyanocinctus and the dreaded Black mamba (Dendroaspis Polylepis) the author uses the biological and behavioral knowledge from section one to fill out provings and case studies.
The book ends with remedies related to the snakes, snake mythologies and dreams and extensive comparative and differential tables and charts listing much of what has been covered in the text in a quick reference form. Finally, links to snake websites of all kinds allows the journey of discovery to continue.
Do I recommend this book? You bet. Even if you are not a homeopath this volume possesses such a wealth of information at all levels for any ophiophilist (and who of us is not fascinated by these fascinating creatures) your bookcase would have a place for it. Well presented and written, this book is hard to fault and really a must for any practitioner. Well done Dr. Thakkar for providing a long overdue treatise."
Review by Laura Russell, Helios, UK
"Insight into the Consciousness of Snake Remedies is a scholarly but immensely readable account of the diversity of the snake kingdom: their life styles, behaviour, sexuality, habitat and venom.
The author's reverence for these creatures is evident from her attitude of questioning people's hostility, horror and hatred of snakes. A different take on some Lachesis behaviour is followed by several insightful studies of other lesser known serpents. Individual snakes are clearly differentiated from similar ones - each snake being illustrated by a case.
This book will add depth to your understanding of snake characteristics in your patients as well as broaden your prescribing repertoire from the one usual well-known polycrest. There is a chapter on related remedies, snake dreams and the mythological importance of snakes - as well as copious graphs, charts and tables."
Review by Allison Harris, Los Angeles, US
"Having had the opportunity of reading Sadhana Thakkar’s "Insights into the Consciousness of Snake Remedies", I am impressed how this book manages to cover the full spectrum of perspectives of these remarkable remedies. The reader is presented first with a broad introduction to snakes in general including their anatomy, physiology and life style. As the book unfolds, unique details of each snake species as well as the corresponding remedy are revealed in systematic manner. We slowly begin to see the similarities along with distinct differences between various sub-families of snakes. The presentation of cases is stimulating as the book starts with straightforward simple examples moving to a much more complex presentations. This style of studying Materia Medica is so complete that it is valuable to all homeopaths regardless of the length of their experience. For an experienced homeopath, Sadhana’s work provides usable individual traits of the doctrine of signatures and lends clinically proven characteristics. For the homeopathic student, the book opens doors to other snakes beyond Lachesis and brings a clarity to other snakes with simple differential charts.
Review by Barbara McKinstry N.D. FCAH, Toronto, Canada
"This book is amazing! It's a great addition to understanding the snake remedies. Every Homeopath should study this book. As a Homeopathic doctor myself, I've referred certain family members to Sadhna over the years and as it turns out, some are referenced in the book! From witnessing many significant and deep health improvements in these relatives, I can endorse the book whole heartedly. Additionally and in particular, I appreciate the detailed richness of the cases and rubrics, side by side. I am studying it and will use it to open up the differences in snake families and the symptoms that appear in my clients. Finally, the descriptions of snakes in their habitats and lives are especially well done for me, who has with very little contact with snakes in the wild."
Review by Silvana Jezler, New York, US
"Sadhna's book on the Insights into the Consciousness of Snake Remedies has really helped me change my opinion of snake remedies. I believed that they would only apply to patients that have certain negative attributes such as jealousy, competition and aggression and I now see that these remedies are fantastic for hormonal problems and that they also have a very deep healing effect. The individuals that need snake remedies can be very caring and are highly artistic and spiritual. Also, the way she has categorized the snakes - biologically into different groups and the way they live, the poisons that have different effects - has been a great eye opener for me. I truly recommend this book to any homeopath or student of homeopathy."