1/. I see this all the time. Sadly it is the Kentian spiritual teaching regarding mental emotional and Constitutional symptoms being the correct and essential prescribing criteria which has created this situation. It is false.
Hahnemann stated clearly:
§ 6 Sixth Edition
The unprejudiced observer – well aware of the futility of transcendental speculations which can receive no confirmation from experience – be his powers of penetration ever so great, takes note of nothing in every individual disease, except the changes in the health of the body and of the mind (morbid phenomena, accidents, symptoms) which can be perceived externally by means of the senses; that is to say, he notices only the deviations from the former healthy state of the now diseased individual, which are felt by the patient himself, remarked by those around him and observed by the physician. All these perceptible signs represent the disease in its whole extent, that is, together they form the true and only conceivable portrait of the disease.
When analysis is applied to this directive, it becomes clear that there is no emphasis on the mind or desires or indeed, to personality, (another misleading emphasis in understanding remedies).
2/. In case taking, both the symptoms of the disease, and the individual reaction to the disease are to be noted. If we know the nature of a named disease, its progression and pathology, we can note clearly which aspects of its reach is affecting the patient, and how the patient processes the infection in an individual way.
§ 153 Sixth Edition
In this search for a homoeopathic specific remedy, that is to say, in this comparison of the collective symptoms of the natural disease with the list of symptoms of known medicines, in order to find among these an artificial morbific agent corresponding by similarity to the disease to be cured, the more striking, singular, uncommon and peculiar (characteristic) signs and symptoms1 of the case of disease are chiefly and most solely to be kept in view; for it is more particularly these that very similar ones in the list of symptoms of the selected medicine must correspond to, in order to constitute it the most suitable for effecting the cure. The more general and undefined symptoms: loss of appetite, headache, debility, restless sleep, discomfort, and so forth, demand but little attention when of that vague and indefinite character, if they cannot be more accurately described, as symptoms of such a general nature are observed in almost every disease and from almost every drug.
Many years ago, in my studies to find out how to take a case, I went out on a limb and noted only the chief characteristics of a patients presentation, one two or three symptoms which ‘peculiarised’ and personalised the case before me. As I refined this technique, I learned to see the disease through the patients expressions of symptoms, not all the symptoms were of the pathology of the named disease, yet were intrinsically part of that infection though not noted as part of that disease. the patient presented symptoms which were expressed reactively and individually and as such needed individual treatment.
Each living organism comes from a line of genetic encoding and also the line of disease and weakness in the family. One family will be tubercular inclined and another from the results of say, a syphilitic background which has been well diluted but expressed through acute diseases not immediately associated with syphilis.
Because of the unknown backgrounds, we can ONLY prescribe on the symptoms presented. So for example, a patient presenting ringworm, we have a few remedies that deal with that infection readily. Occasionally, the patient does not resolve despite careful noting of the symptoms and a few doses of the requisite remedy. Compton-Burnett noted that ringworm ONLY appeared on susceptible people of a tubercular diathesis, and studied Bacillinum carefully, and then gave to the non resolving patients. Without exception, they all were relieved of Ringworm.
The practice of homoeopathy is solely effective based on the similarity of the remedy to the disease. However, it is ESSENTIAL to have the correct symptoms of the ‘disease’ to be effective.
The ‘disease’, is the individual presentation of the change in the patient and how that is expressed, not the symptoms of the named pathology. It is not merely the collection of symptoms collectively, it is the drilling down to the strangeness (to be discussed in seminars) the rarity of some symptoms (to be discussed in Seminars) and the characteristics (to be discussed in seminars) of both the disease and a considered remedy.