§ 153 Fifth 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 symptoms 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.”
- a feature or quality belonging typically to a person, place, or thing and serving to identify them.
- typical of a particular person, place, or thing,
- a special quality or trait that makes a person, thing, or group different from others
- late Middle English (in the sense ‘particular’): from Latin peculiaris ‘of private property’, from peculium ‘property’, from pecu ‘cattle’ (cattle being private property). The sense ‘strange’ dates from the early 17th century.
- Belonging exclusively to: some languages are peculiar to one region.
We can see here, that the words used by Hahnemann in German, were translated CAREFULLY to convey the the full and true meaning of what needs to be looked for in Disease and Medicine.
Let me give you an example of characteristic and peculiar from the art world.
The three snippets from paintings above, are each peculiar to the individual artist. The Colours, the Texture, the Design, the Subject, the Style and the Feel. A person viewing these small portions of the fuller paintings, would need to be familiar with the artists work, perhaps with knowledge of several of his paintings, his peculiar use of light and brush strokes, his subject matter of interest, to be able to IMMEDIATELY recognise with certainty which artist painted the full picture.
So too with disease and medicines. A person familiar with the provings, will know of the characteristics of individual medicines.. He will know by its sphere of action, by its peculiar affinity to certain organs or types of action on the economy what medicines will produce certain symptoms ALWAYS in a peculiar manner to that drug, even if he has NEVER seen it in a location as is displayed before him in a case of disease. He will know the medicine by its feel, by its type of action and by its peculiar and characteristic expression, so much so that he will recognise it immediately just like a snippet of a painting on canvas, when he sees it.
As a musician, I usually know which artist has written a song on its opening notes by the Style, arrangement, feel and collection of notes even if I HAVE NEVER HEARD THE TUNE BEFORE. It is peculiar to the song writer.
We should know our medicines the same way.