WildAgain Wildlife Rehabilitation, Inc.

return to previous page

The Car Key Analogy - a Simple Way to Remember  New Concepts

Shirley J. Casey, WildAgain Wildlife Rehabilitation


If the key fits…

In the almost 10 years of teaching our homeopathy for wildlife seminar, I’ve noticed how much new people struggle with some fundamental differences between an energetic modality such as homeopathy versus pharmaceuticals. Here’s an analogy that we often use to help people better understand some basic homeopathic concepts.

The homeopathic principle of the simillimum means finding the remedy that matches the patient’s whole being as well as the current condition.  A homeopathic remedy is a message to the vital force to apply more energy toward healing. This is done via an energetic message, and not by giving a chemical medicine. An energetic message might be compared to turning the key in the car ignition. The correct key starts the car. 

Finding the right key

First, we want to find the student’s car in the parking lot. The student describes the car in detail – color, make, license plate, bumper stickers, car contents (considering the whole being and case-taking). We then need to pick the correct key for the student’s car. (the single remedy and repertorizing) We examine several key rings. We select those keys that match the car manufacturer, eliminating house keys and keys for other types of cars (more repertorizing and reading materia medica).

Just as when a remedy that doesn’t match the case does not achieve the desired response, if the key placed in the ignition is not the correct key, it won’t fit.  If the incorrect key is turned in the ignition, the car won’t start because the key wasn’t a match. So should we force the key into the ignition and turn it strongly a couple more times (giving a high potency and repeating it when there has been no change)? Of course not.

Don’t keep turning that key

When the correct key is turned in the ignition, the engine starts (finding the correct remedy and potency). It’s the car that is doing the work: operating. The key just started the engine and was the stimulus.

At this point in the seminar, I walk across the room – pretending to drive – and say that the car is now moving down the highway at 65 mph. Asking if we should turn the key in the ignition when the car is going 65 mph results in a resounding “NO!” from the audience. The car is running just fine, so turning the ignition when the car is moving at high speeds is not appropriate or desirable! (minimum dose)  When the car turns off the highway and stalls at a stop sign, should the key again be turned in the ignition? Yes (still a match, but we need to repeat). The car starts again.

Changing the tire

The back left tire starts ‘thumping’ and the driver pulls off the road. It’s a flat tire. Should the driver turn the key in the ignition (repeat the remedy)? No! The symptoms have changed, so the driver changes the flat tire (changes remedy). Later, the brakes make noises. Should the driver turn the key in the ignition or change the tire? Of course not (different symptoms)! Simply fix the brakes (changes remedy).

This analogy can be continued and easily expanded in many ways: ignoring car warning lights like low oil (ignoring early symptoms) and putting in bad gasoline (poor nutrition). The list goes on.

A person using homeopathic remedies can even attach an old car key to the top of a remedy box with notes such as ‘find the right key,’ or ‘don’t burn out the ignition’ to keep the analogy fresh in their mind. Simplistic? Certainly. But if an analogy helps people more easily and quickly grasp and remember some basic concepts, further study of homeopathic principles and the Organon seem less daunting.


Copyright 2006. © WildAgain Wildlife Rehabilitation, Inc. All Rights Reserved unless otherwise stated.