Paracelsus

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Paracelsus

Post  Mira W. on Sun Oct 05, 2014 6:39 pm

"Medicine is not only a science; it is also an art. It does not consist of compounding pills and plasters; it deals with the very processes of life, which must be understood before they may be guided." -Paracelsus

Theophrastus Phillippus Aureolus Bombastus von Hohenheim, or Paracelsus had been both arrogant and defiant during his lifetime. Called the "Medical Luther" of the Renaissance, his pharmaceutic discoveries still influence physicians today.

Born in Switzerland in a poor German family, he learned Chemistry from his father at a young age. It was later in his teens that his rebellious attitude became evident, when he keenly criticized countless universities during his further studies in the medical field. It is said that he attended over seven colleges within a five-year time span, and stated it was "amazing how they managed to produce so many high asses."* In 1516 that he came to the conclusion that most known medical practices were wrong and changed his name to Paracelsus - a name which literally means "greater that Celsus," stating he was above the famous Aulus Cornelius Celus.

After completing his education, he traveled Europe in an attempt to study the different healing methods throughout the world, and even made a stop in Hungary. (!) During his travels he served as an army surgeon, obtaining many new medical discoveries. He even met Erasmus, who had been so impressed by Paracelsus that he became town physician in Basel. Along with that title came the responsibility of teaching at the University of Basel, which he did quite unconventionally. His unusual methods included burning countless writings of famous physicians -like the book of Classical Medicine- and teaching in German instead of Latin, earning his title as, “The Luther of Medicine.”

While he certainly had many supporters, his offensive nature and bold streak got him kicked out of Basel. He outright claimed medical practices of that time to be stupid; he believed in testing theories and observing patients, instead of simply going along with what was known to be true. Many called him a magician, though he stated otherwise. He simply believed in Nature’s healing powers, and extracted all his medical substances from plants. He introduced new ways of dealing with wounds, and debunked many false beliefs. For example, it was commonly thought those who got sick and worked in mines were ill because the mountain spirits were punishing them. Paracelsus claimed it was the toxic fumes in the caves. Among other things, he was also the one to discover and name what we know today as, “zinc.”



Throughout his 47 years of life he published several books, and died in Salzburg in 1541.
*(Quote from britannica.com)
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Re: Paracelsus

Post  CicelyS on Sun Oct 05, 2014 8:32 pm

It's a shame that such an intelligent man could have been so rude and arrogant. If not for his attitude, I'm sure lots of people would have been a lot more convinced by him. Great posttt
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Re: Paracelsus

Post  Vasilisa on Sun Oct 05, 2014 11:48 pm

I like his quote. It makes you think about how two things are connected. It looks like he had studied medicine his whole life. He was a smart man, sadly no one really listened to him.

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