I got interested in Homeopathy because of my inherited chronic condition and started reading books and internet for info about Homeopathy. I understand that an individual seeking homeopathic treatment can be prescribed remedy in one of the following ways :
a) based on the constitution of the individual
b) based on the causative factors
c) based on the totality of symptoms presented by the person
In case of a chronic disease:
a) is it possible that the above lead to different remedies ?
b) if yes, which one will get precedence ?
c) if the answer is (a) or (b), will that remedy take care of the symptoms presented by the person, even if they are not indicated as per the provings ?
Can you please explain ? I hope this is not a silly/meaningless question.
To begin with, I would like to say that your question is not at all meaningless. In fact, it is a good question. You are right that homeopathic medicine can be prescribed based on the totality of symptoms, causative factors, constitution etc. In fact, there are 30 other ways that can be named. It is true that at times focusing on different approaches can give different results. But I must say that the system or the approach itself is often not faulty. The error results because a practitioner focuses on some particular approach to the exclusion of others. All thses ways can work. You look at any one of them from front and it would appear a square in isolation. In reality, they are just different faces of a cube. You take hold of any face and you will be holding the cube. The problem arises when a homeopath becomes so focussed on the square that he is unable to see the bigger truth.
Homeopaths often fail to interpret the word ‘totality’ correctly. Whenever this word is used, it is related to the ‘totality of symptoms’. But this is just a partial totality! In Homeopathy, the word ‘totality’ stands for the ‘totality of the person’ who is ill. And when you consider the person as a whole, then all these approaches merge at some point. When you consider the person in totality, the cause, constitution, signs, symptoms, miasms etc all become part of one larger picture. A homeopath who can see this larger picture has more chances of curing his/her patients. With partial totality it is usually a 50/50 state. Remember the story of 5 blind men and an elephant? one touches the leg, one tail, one trunk, one tusk and so on. If you are so blind that you can not see the elephant in its totality than there are chances that you can miss an elephants leg for a trees trunk or an elephants tail for one of a camel. You never know. I agree that there are practitioners who have mastered on identifying an animal just by touching its tail so well that they usually are right. But what will happen to them if someday they are asked to identify a tail less creature?? I hope you are able to understand the point in this similie.
Now coming to your other questions. Sometimes it does happen that a patient constitutionally appears to be of some medicine and the state he is in is different. Say a patient with calc-carb constitution, manifesting a stramonium state. In such cases the selection of medicine will depend on the clinical judgment of the homeopath. There are no fixed rules. But one thing you must understand is that constitutional description that is given in books is not absolute. Constitutional descriptions have come thru clinical experiences when homeopaths have found a particular medicine to be more effective in certain constitution. But that does not mean that the medicine will not work in other constitutions. So one has to be open and flexible while considering constitutions.
Lastly, yes! it is possible that a medicine can cure symptoms that have never been recorded in provings. That is how clinically verified symptoms are added to our books. This happens because in provings that are not very extensive, all the symptoms of a medicine are never brought out. I personally also believe that any medicine can cure any symptom, if the central theme is covered well by a remedy. This last one might be difficult for your level but the summary is that it is possible for a medicine to cure symptoms that were not recorded in provings.
I hope I have been able to make things clear enough,