Each homeopathic remedy belongs to a certain class of remedies that have their own set of overall characteristics. The three main classes or kingdoms are Plants, Minerals and Animals. Within each of these kingdoms are sub-kingdoms, such as in the Mineral Class there are the salts and the metals. Sub-kingdoms share the same general characteristics of the main kingdom, but they also have their own individual characteristics that vary based on the degree of compensation and desperateness. Within each sub-kingdom are the members; again, each member has its own special characteristics that define the remedy for use.

While analyzing a case during the interview process, the Homeopaths often look for the key features to help them determine into which class the patient’s symptoms fit. This is especially important when looking at healing chronic or long-term complaints such as asthma, chronic infections, diabetes, etc. For acute or new conditions, although the characteristics of the classes are important, the changes in a person’s physical status, mental processes and/or emotions are usually used to identify which Homeopathic Remedy would be indicated.

For example, when a person is stung by a bee, the symptoms from that sting would be considered ACUTE as they are new changes. Instead of looking at the characteristics of a class, one would look at the changes that have occurred from the bite. The healing remedy could be found in any class, and would be used based on the current symptoms. For the case of a bee sting, the two most-indicated remedies are Ledum palustre (a plant remedy) and Apis mellifica (an animal remedy).

For healing of LONG-TERM, CHRONIC ILLNESSES, the remedy kingdoms and their sub-kingdoms must be considered for true healing to occur. It may be possible to select a remedy without considering the perceptions and sensations within each remedy; however for complete removal of the disease and all its components, one MUST look deep within for the indicated remedies.

The first step is to determine the Kingdom. Again, the three main homeopathic kingdoms are the Plants, Minerals and Animals.


The common Plant characteristic is sensitivity. Plants are unable to just “pick up and leave” if the weather is bad or if they don’t like the neighbors. Therefore, they are sensitive to their environment and everything around them because they have to adapt and adjust accordingly. Several of the plant sub-kingdoms are trees, herbs and fungi.

An example of a plant sub-kingdom is Compositae which all members share the sensitivity of being hurt or injured; its members all have their own expression of being hurt or injured, such as Arnica montana has a “bruised sensation” whereas Chamomilla has “a reacting to hurting others.”


Minerals are the elements of the Periodic Table, or some combination of these elements. The main characteristics of all the elements are structure and order/organization. Everything built from a mineral has uniformity and structure. The biggest concern of those needing a mineral remedy is loss of that structure in some way in their life, as when a person loses his livelihood after the loss of a job, or when a structure of the family changes after a parent dies or through divorce.

The two main sub-kingdoms of minerals are Salts and Metals. Each row and column of the Periodic Table has their own characteristics. For example, elements of the first column are very unstable and react with other elements because they need the stability the other elements bring; whereas the last column is very stable by themselves and don’t need others (other elements). As for the rows, they progress from simple thoughts and beginnings and progress in heaviness and complexity as the table progresses downward, ending in disintegration and decay around rows 6 and 7.

Homeopaths often look at which row and column a person is at when they have been identified as having the chief characteristics of a Mineral Remedy.


The main themes of the Animal Kingdom are survival, competition and aggressor/victim issues. Most people can understand the issues of the animal kingdom because of our familiarity with animals. Animals in nature focus on survival; some are predators (aggressors) and some are prey (victims). Animals work hard to attract mates (survival) and to be the head of the herd or pride (competition), as well as to find food (survival). Looking at any animal, one can easily see these characteristics displayed in some fashion.

Knowing these characteristics, they are usually identifiable in people. A person may dress in unusual clothing to attract the attention of others. Sometimes two men fight over a woman, or two women fight over one man. In relationships, a dominant male often subdues or stifles those he perceives as “under” him (his wife and children).

Like Plants and Minerals, the Animal Kingdom also has sub-kingdoms. Each has the key characteristics of the main kingdom, but again, each also has its own characteristics. For example, Snake Remedies’ main characteristics (which focus on survival) are that they wait in hiding and to attack when least expected; they choke the life out of their victims. Also included in the Animal Kingdom are Spiders, Insects, Mammals, Birds and Sea Critters.

Identifying the Kingdom

On the whole, it may seem like it would be an easy task to determine into which class the remedy would be found to start the healing process for an individual. Surprisingly so, a Homeopath must look beyond the thoughts and look at the perceptions to find the kingdom.

I’ll use a personal example. When I was first learning these three classes, I looked at different people in my life at the time and said, “He’s definitely an Animal”, or “She’s a Plant” based on the characteristics I saw the person display and how the person talked and acted. But I was wrong in my assumptions. I didn’t look deep enough.

A friend who I thought was an “Animal” acted like he was the king of the world. He expected everyone to do his bidding while he did everything he wanted to do without regard for other people’s feelings. He was right and if you didn’t believe him, then tough. He had to get to the table first to fill his plate first, and then everyone else could have what was left. He was the boss and could do no wrong.

So, of course I felt he had animal characteristics.

But what was the feeling or perception behind those actions? When looking deeper, he was afraid. He felt that his survival depended upon his being right. He was afraid to lose his position in society and in the eyes of others, so he acted like he was smarter, stronger and in a higher position than everyone else. Although some of these characteristics are Animal Remedy characteristics, because he was afraid of what others thought or that others might “dethrone” him, those are Mineral Remedy characteristics. In the end, my friend was a “Mineral Remedy” and the indicated remedy was Arsenicum album.

His wife, on the other hand, I saw as being a “plant.” She was quiet and docile; always seemed to be concerned with her health. She cried easily (sensitive). She rarely left the house and when she did, she was anxious to return as quickly as possible (rooted).

But when looking deeper within, to the reasons behind her actions, I found her perceptions were that of a victim. She was always afraid of her husband or how she would be treated by him, so that was why she cried a lot. And she was afraid to leave her home because she didn’t know how long was okay for her to be gone. She stated she felt like a mouse caught in the clutches of a snake. She did very well on a “snake remedy”.

Therefore, always look deep into the person’s beliefs and perceptions to find out why the person acts as he does. Don’t just assume his actions will point to the right Kingdom.

Best wishes,
Dr. Ronda

Disclaimer: The information provided by Dr. Ronda Behnke Theys is for educational purposes only. It is important that you not make health decisions or stop any medication without first consulting your personal physician or health care provider.

Author's Bio: 

Dr. Ronda Behnke Theys is a distinguished practitioner of Classical Homeopathy and other Natural Healing methods. As co-founder of The Homeopathic Centers of America, Dr. Ronda passes on what she has learned through her seminars, articles, books and when working with individuals. You can contact Dr. Ronda via the www.MyHCA.org or by calling 920-558-9806. For a FREE guide to help you along your healing path, visit the HCA website as noted above.