S Schetzek Wilseder Forum Studentische Arbeitskreise Homeopathie, Berlin, Germany
It is impossible to study homeopathy at any university in the very motherland of homeopathy. As a consequence the Wilseder Forum was founded in 1992 on the initiative of students of medicine in the town of Wilsede, uniting the collegiate homeopathic students groups in Germany, which currently exist at 27 of 36 universities offering human medicine.
There are also two study groups dealing with veterinary medicine. The number of students in the groups varies, altogether they are about 300. Between 50 and 70 of them meet twice a year for four days. Since 1996 these meetings, which are the organisation’s core, have been taking place in the town of Wissen (coincidently the German word for ‘knowledge’). Based on a well prepared structural setup the lively forum provides a unique space for intellectual freedom.
Homeopathy is being looked at in a benevolent, competent but also critical fashion, usually not lacking a sense of humour. Benefiting from previous meetings attendees have been able to establish a wide network of contacts and relationships and constantly work towards the establishment of new seminars and initiatives, which develop teaching material. One of the students’ goals is to deal with homeopathy on a scientific level without submitting it to a dissimilar methodology. This and many other activities are generously supported and financed by the ‘Karl und Veronica Carstens-Stiftung’.
The forum provides an important framework for the enrichment of existing structures in academic medicine and also valuable input within the field of homeopathy. In order to officially institutionalise homeopathy at the universities there are plans to increase its presence at the faculties of medicine through further study groups, series of lectures and seminars. In this way thousands of students have already benefited from an unprejudiced approach to homeopathy at least once in their careers.