Flower Essences

Nature’s Alchemy

The healing power of nature has been known almost since time began. Flowers and plants uplift us. Scents give pleasure, colours and forms entrance us, and the whole splendour of nature nurtures us. On a more physical level, plants give us food and medicines.

But it is the invisible level, the level of vibrations or vibes that is really fascinating. Science is just starting to get interested in what we all know is true – Nature’s power to help us heal. In the 16th Century Paracelsus described the healing power of dew from flowers. Everything in the world is composed of vibrations, or vibes. Nature (and music) provides these vibes in harmonious patterns.

We all know instinctively which flowers and plants we like to look at. We’re now discovering that just seeing them and touching them can help us feel different. Even more interesting, making a flower essence, and taking it, can help support our feelings. At this level of vibes, nature can help support us reflect on our experiences, moving us on from stuck frames of mind and uplift us. Nature helps us feel better! Nature transforms us, changing dark dull feelings into joy and smiles – truly alchemy!

Many people have heard of Rescue Remedy® and the Bach Flower Remedies, produced by several makers including Nelsons, Healing Herbs, Ainsworths, Sun Essences, Crystal Herbs and others. But few people realise there are thousands of other essences produced by makers in Britain and around the world. Even fewer are in on the secret that we can all make our own essences to help us feel better.

There’s a whole secret world of the Healing Power of Nature, just waiting to be discovered!

Making a flower essence is really quite simple. All you need is sunshine, a glass bowl of water, and some (non-poisonous) flowers carefully picked and placed in – or just bent into – the water. Over three or four hours – sometimes less – a vibrational imprint is captured in the water. After removing the flowers, this water is then preserved 50/50 with spirit, commonly brandy or vodka – this is Mother Tincture. To make a stock bottle, just a few drops of mother are placed into a 10ml bottle of spirit. Treatment then involves either a few drops of this onto the tongue, or into a drink, or into a further bottle of water and spirit as a Treatment Bottle.

You can use up to six or so Bach essences at once, and all are compatible with each other and with all other treatments, allopathic, homeopathic or other.

What might you use them for? Well, Dr Bach, a Medical Doctor and skilled homeopath in the 1920’s and 30’s, was also the originator of the Bach set. He created 38 covering as he felt, every aspect of our emotions. He chose them intuitively, feeling himself a negative state of mind acutely for up to three days, before finding, or being led to, the flower or tree that gave him relief from that particular emotional imbalance.

Flower Essences, he felt, were a gentle form of therapy to flood us with positive vibrations and dissolve patterns of imbalance. He chose Impatiens for impatience, Larch to build confidence, Holly to flood us with divine love, and so on. Holly was the one that proved for me they were not working at a placebo level. My two year old daughter was suffering from toddler jealousy, and nothing seemed to help. Finally, after three weeks, we gave her Holly, into her little red beaker. After two days she was a changed child, full of love and happiness again.

Dr Bach felt that flower essences were there to teach us Soul Lessons, such as restraint (Chicory), courage (Rock Rose) and so on. He was a sensitive, as are many people. I have met a number of people who are able to tune in to a flower essence, or even directly to a plant, and determine, or rather “feel”, what that flower is able to help us with. This may be a growth industry for the future – think how many gardeners there are in the country! – and how many people are attracted to or respond to flowers!

Flower essences gently, sometimes quite firmly, rebalance aspects of ourselves, dissolving negative aspects and allowing the positive to shine through.

Choosing flower essences can be done from studying the written descriptions or using questionnaires, but it is also possible to choose by dowsing, kinesiology, by looking at photographs (which ones attract you, and which repel?), or by direct sensing. Looking at photos works for some people, and seems to resonate directly with the mind – or perhaps the soul. It is said that the flowers that attract you represent issues that you feel comfortable about facing, whilst ones that you dislike represent issues you’d rather not face. Sensing is different again – you just run your fingers slowly half an inch above a set of Bach or other essences, and notice which feel cool, warm, or give a draught or tingling. Checking on what these represent often astonishes people with the accuracy of how direct apprehension showed them the correct answer. In my experience, even on the very first time of doing this, about half the people who try this find some success – which begs the question, what talents do we have as humans that still lie hidden, undeveloped by ourselves?

When choosing intuitively, sometime our first choices are for the here and now –we need to hold, or take these essences just for a few minutes to rebalance now. Only then we can we choose wisely for a treatment bottle to take over a period of time – once the here and now has been balanced.

Making a treatment bottle involves a few drops of each chosen essence into a 30ml (or 10ml) bottle of 20% spirit (vodka or brandy) and 80% water (exact proportions not crucial). The spirit helps act as a preservative. If the bottle is for someone who wishes to avoid alcohol, merely dropping some drops into very hot water will evaporate it off. An alternative preservative is vegetable glycerin, or vinegar.

Dosage is then 3-4 drops on tongue 4-6 times daily for as long as needed. The following is my favourite description of essences working:

‘The suggestion of using Bach Flower Remedies help me seemed novel and different. Although I agreed to give them a try I was very sceptical. They had been around since the 1930’s and were developed by a physician with a Harley Street practice so why wasn’t every doctor prescribing them?

‘To begin with the Remedies (Mustard and Walnut) did not seem to be having a noticeable effect. Then I began to notice that various events or occasions In my life would come to mind. Often I would rethink these occasions, see what was really good in them for me and feel much more at ease with the thoughts.

‘This happened not only to the good memories but to the bad ones as well. It was as if someone had opened the emotional filing cabinet and no way could I close it. Gradually I have found incident after incident coming to mind for reassessment, memories which at one time I could never have faced again, memories which I could not under any circumstances have shared with anyone could be dealt with and put away. Pandora’s box of personal memories was revealing the bad things and gradually each was being cleaned away.

‘In this process I learned to really cry again and not to withhold my feelings and batten them down. As a child my mother had insisted that my father never saw me in tears, but now the tears could flow freely. There was no guilt feeling about crying now.

‘As the gentle cleansing and healing process has gone on over the weeks I have begun to realise that I am still an attractive woman with a lot to contribute to the world I live in.

‘The whole effect seems to me to be rather like an old Dutch master’s portrait which has become grimy and soiled with time and smoke from the fire. When it is gently cleaned and restored with modern techniques the beauty of the picture is almost better than in its original state; the lights and tones shine through much more clearly, the subtle hues and highlights become more apparent.’ Lady, age 53, December 1997, having taken Mustard and Walnut for six weeks.

Many people will have one constitutional remedy that will give them a considerable lift whatever other problems are around. Feelings can elongate into moods, and too much mood out of balance can change our temperament – flower essences can help to retune these imbalances.