(Photos Top Clockwise: Wild Rose, Chicory, Crab Apple and Honeysuckle. Living without passion? Try Wild Rose flower essence. Do you need a lot of attention? Try Chicory flower essence. Does everything need to be clean and tidy? Try Crab Apple flower essence. Do you struggle to let go of the past? Try Honeysuckle flower essence.)
“If we could see the miracle of a single flower clearly our whole life would change”. Buddha
BLOG 27: As a child I was very much affected by the beauty and vibrant colours of wild flowers in the field directly beyond my fenced yard. I would lay in the tall grass under the hot summer sun and observe closely as the insect world engaged with the delicate flowers. I had no idea I was engaging with them too. I can never forget those lazy hot days and am fondly reminded of them again today as I hike through a field crowded with July wildflowers.
Wild or not, flowers are healers and civilization is deeply intertwined with them. In fact, throughout the ages we have been sharing flowers during our most intimate emotional events like funerals, weddings, graduations and more. Flowers are present to fill us with hope or to lift us up to a joyous mood. Placing a group of flowers in a vase onto the dining table does wonders to the mood of any room. Flowers have an important role in our lives because there is nothing better than joy, right? The science of Aromatherapy (essential oils) and Phytotherapy (flower teas) are commonly known to many when flowers come to mind but do you know they have another healing side? Yes, their ‘essence’ is a healer too and should not be confused with essential oils. The ‘essence’ of the flower is the soul of the plant. Flower Therapy is the practice of administering flower remedies. The essence of flowers come from plants and trees. Interestingly, flower essences work on our energetic level of being and since the 1930’s they have been administered for the natural treatment of personalities. What? Personalities? The founder of flower essence remedies was a medical doctor and pathologist who after 20 years of practice (1910-1930) discovered through his patients that ‘no true healing could take place unless there is a change in outlook, peace of mind, and inner happiness’ in the patient. He believed any disease was ‘the consolidation of a mental attitude’. Interesting, no?
Bach was a famous doctor in his time, an immunologist and bacteriologist who was making vaccines before he quit to dedicate his time to natural flower remedies. As he researched bacteria he noticed that ‘poisoning from certain bacteria in the intestinal tract was the principle cause of chronic disease’. He also observed that the bacteria also changed into different types and that these types correlated with certain mental or personality types.’ He created designer-like vaccines to treat the key personality type and they proved highly successful at the time. After 1930 he left his practice and moved back to Wales and dedicated his life to understanding mental types and experimented with flowers to remedy the detrimental negative chatter. ‘Stop and smell the flowers’ seems like a huge thing all of a sudden.
He discovered 38 effective flower remedies in the process. He narrowed down seven basic emotions that he saw as the cause of all human ills and each flower is labeled with one of these emotions. These emotions are Fear (F), Uncertainty (U), Insufficient Interest in present circumstances (II), Loneliness (L), Over sensitivity to influence and ideas of others (OS), Despondency and Despair (DD), and Over Care for the welfare of others (OC).
Many years ago I suffered from a recurring thoughts of actual personal events. I say I suffered because the nostalgic thoughts were limiting to me. It wasn’t at all negative but was negatively limiting my happiness. Every move I made was judged and compared to the thoughts and nothing could compare or compete with them. I was stuck in the past and not moving forward. Then a co-worker (who is a Homeopathic Dr.) at the health food store introduced me to the Bach Flower Remedy ‘Honeysuckle.’ He said just try it and decide. I read the instructions and was really floored by its claim and impressed by my co-workers choice for me.
Honeysuckle fell under the (II) category (see above) and was key for ‘dwelling on thoughts of the past, nostalgia and homesickness.’
-Negative: It was for those who always want what they do not have; the way it was, don’t expect future happiness such as that they’d had; lonely; right-side imbalance, spleen’
+Positive outcome from the honeysuckle flower therapy ‘is emotional and astral coming into the present and learning lessons from the past.’
So I wrote down my nostalgic recurring thoughts in my journal and began taking the Honeysuckle remedy. It was at least three weeks later when I noticed that I had stopped taken the remedy at least a week earlier and forgot to write in my journal too. In fact I couldn’t pinpoint when I stopped having the thoughts. I was astounded. I had those recurring thoughts for over 24 years. I stood there confused and tried to force the thoughts back in my brain but could only talk about them. It really worked and to this day I don’t compare anything to that past and have moved forward. I now see the events as an important wonderful chapter in my life that brought me to the present. The nostalgia has no control of my brain anymore.
As you can imagine I turned a lot of customers onto Bach’s flower remedies and as well California Flower Essences and heard many awesome testimonials. Animals and children respond very well to flower remedies and this has convinced me that there could be no placebo effect happening here…how would they know the water has been doctored?
Bach believed that his 38 remedies were just the tip of the iceberg and urged his patients to follow their intuition and make their own simple remedies. He also believed that the flowers you use should habit in a field near you or your childhood home. The recipe is incredibly simple and I would love to share it with you! There is more than one method but the Sun infusion method from my course is the preferred method of herbalists.
You must be prepared to spend the day in the field where the flowers live and make your remedies on the spot. The sky should be cloudless so follow the weather reports to ensure this. A clear stream close by is also important but bringing local pure water to the location is also good. Go hiking and find a pristine field (no known pollutants) full of wildflowers or tree flowers you choose to work with and that resonate with you somehow. If you can’t decide what to use then sit and relax and a flower will likely come to mind. Or choose to pick a known flower remedy that Bach has already tested. Pick as many as you can of the same species and be careful to only grab them by the stem and not to touch the flower. Flowers must be very healthy and alive. Place the flowers in a clear glass bowl with about 250ml of water so that the flowers cover the surface of the water. Let them infuse in the sun for three or more hours. (Bring a book, picnic basket and relax) Then remove the flowers from the bowl with a plant part such as a stick, stem or a leaf. After the flowers have been removed add the infused water to an equal part of brandy (natural preservative). This first infusion is called the ‘original essence’ and is used to make ‘stock bottles’ for storage and to make ‘dosage bottles’ to carry with you as needed. To make a Stock bottle: drop two drops of the ‘original essence’ into a one ounce bottle filled with brandy. The whole ounce becomes the flower essence. Stock bottles do not expire and are used to prepare individual dosage bottles. To make a dosage bottle fill a one ounce dropper bottle with pure water (20ml) and add one teaspoon (5ml) of brandy and then add two drops of the ‘stock’ bottle essence of choice. You can add two drops of other flower stocks to the same remedy if you need to tackle more that one negative thought. One can mix up to 6 flowers in a single remedy but no more. You can take your remedy for however short or long is appropriate. You can change your remedies daily if you have a change in a mental state. Sometimes more than one thing happens at a time creating a chatty mental state. Dosage is 4 drops 4 times daily directly on the tongue or diluted in a little water. In emergencies you can take them more frequently according to your need.You can not overdose on flower remedies. I hope you will experiment and make your own remedies from the flowers around you. Choose your favourites and see what they have in store for you. Remember their purpose is to turn negative thoughts around to create a joyous state. Nothing wrong with that.
A joyous state is a healthy state and this state is an important key to overcoming chronic ills.
On a clear sky day you need to pack a lunch, a clear glass bowl, a cup of pure water, a cup of brandy, and a 500 ml empty glass bottle. Maybe Bring a book, a journal or just be still and enjoy the lightness of being for the morning. Leave the children at home.