Homeopathy Tips for 6/25/13 Eliciting the Case

One of the struggles I see with new students receiving cases is getting the information to determine what is asking to be healed. The client will always tell us everything we need to know eventually, but sometimes they may need a little help. We do not want to influence the case by asking too many questions so it is our job to elicit the case.

The dictionary defines the word elicit as; 1. to call forth (emotions, feelings and responses) 2. deduce (a principle or construe (a meaning) 3. derive by reason. This word is from the Latin word elicitus meaning to “draw forth”.

This definition most accurately describes what the homeopath needs to do to receive a good case with enough information to understand what is asking to be healed. Without this information the case is not complete and there will be no chance for finding the correct remedy.

Often new students receive cases of family and friends that they know well. If it is not clearly explained to the client that they need to be very candid about what they share and reveal, sometimes the client does not share the core of their suffering. They never are able to reveal their story. This is when I see that the student/homeopath relies on their knowledge of the client to fill in the rest of the unspoken story. This does not make for a very well received case. The case is often received in an impromptu way and not with a clear intention of sitting down to do the case. There is much power to the intention of receiving a case and it is really a sacred time that supports the homeopath as well as the client.

I begin the receiving the case the moment I meet the client for the official case appointment. Many little details can be gleaned from this interaction and observing the client. How they carry themselves, shake your hand, the words they choose to speak, how they approach the chair, which chair they sit on etc. are all ways that the unsettled vital force is expressing itself. Much can be learned at this time.

One request I make of my clients before we begin their story is, “Please tell me everything I need to know to help you.” This lets them know that I need to know how they suffer. Without this being revealed, I can not help. Then I allow them to speak uninterrupted until the next pause in the story happens. These minutes of the case are the most important of the entire case. This is when the person feels less familiar and more out of their comfort zone.

During the time of the initial testimony I pay particular attention to laughing, starting a sentence and not finishing it, or any word they use repeatedly or a theme that emerges from their story. I also listen for anything unusual in their story. When I hear something that needs further clarification I will make a note on my written case to come back and ask about it. First, making notice of the flow being interrupted or too many questions, I will ask them to tell more about the subject of my notes; “please tell me more about…” or “you started a sentence  with ….. and didn’t finish. Can you please tell me more about that?”

Sometimes when the cases seems exhausted, and they have no more to share, if I haven’t heard all of what I need to be able to know what is asking to be healed, I will ask them to tell me a story. They will usually respond with, “what kind of story do you want to hear?” Any story will do. The purpose of this is to get them to talk more and glean from the case more subjects to investigate. Whatever they choose to talk about, I will look for more things in their story that are unusual. Sometimes this will be the key that unlocks the case.

Intuition can play a small part in deciding what more to investigate in an incomplete case. If you have a feeling about something, ask about it. Also ask about their relationship with their partner, their childhood, how they deal with anger, their libido, etc. When they are telling about an encounter, ask them to describe in detail about it. I sometimes say, “if I were a fly on the wall, describe to me what I would see and hear.” This asks them to be objective about their story and not just reporting their feelings. From this I can get a better understanding of their behaviors.

Some cases are primarily physical and others are primarily mental. It is important to get information about both realms of a persons suffering. In a primarily mental case, that one little physical symptom can sometimes point right to the remedy. In a primarily physical case, one mental symptom can sometimes point right to the remedy. It is important to receive as balanced of a case as possible.

Drawing forth the persons story is most important. Eliciting from them what is asking to be healed is essential to finding the remedy. If you have an incomplete case, it is necessary to then ask more questions. Aways keep your questions open-ended. A good question could never be answered with a yes or no reply. Go back to your notes recorded during the interview and ask them to tell more about the questions you have. Getting the person to talk and eliciting their story will most often be enough to receive a complete case. This takes practice. It is an art. Do as many cases as you can and watch to see how a more experienced homeopath does this. It can be learned. Once mastered you will always have complete cases to work with and the question of “whats asking to be healed” will be revealed.

3 comments so far

  1. ramakrishnan mumgathmattham on

    very good reading

  2. Robert Lal on

    it is very informative. something new to learn. Thanks Dr. Robert.

  3. Tariqul Alam on

    It is really a very nice and pragmatic article which has reflected such a vital point of view in Homeopathy that needs to be mastered very efficiently by Homeopaths to treat chronic cases successfully. Thanks a lot for the article.


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