A flower essence is the vibrational imprint of a flower that has been transferred and stabilized in water. Flower essences are infusions of flowers in water, that are potentized and then stabilized in a solution of brandy and water. They contain no scent or perfume and should not be confused with essential oils.
Flower essences are a botanically based healing system that has existed since ancient times. Evidence suggests flower essences have been used by civilizations such as the Ancient Egyptians, Sumerians and Chinese. They have also been used by most indigenous peoples all over the world such as the Native Americans and the Australian Aboriginals.
They believed the morning dew that appeared on the flowers contained healing properties. They would gather this dew and use it as ‘medicine’. Every flower has a particular knowledge that it imparts into that dew. When an individual ingests the dew, they integrate that healing information into their bio-energetic field.
In the 1930s, a British physician by the name of Dr. Edward Bach modernized this ancient concept of dew gathering for healing purposes. He believed that the root of all disease was a result of the personality being out of alignment with the soul.
He asserted that disease could only be eradicated when an individual was in a state of emotional equilibrium. He succeeded in creating a simple and non-invasive system that people could use to heal themselves. He gave up his successful medical practice and dedicated his life to cultivating and standardizing such a system. He identified 37 English wildflowers + 1 water essence that correspond to 38 different human emotions. Dr. Edward Bach is the father of modern day flower essence therapy.
How Do They Work?
Research has recently proved that water has a memory. Flower Essences are made by infusing the blooms particular vibration into water and then stabilizing it. Flower essences works on the premise that every flower has a particular healing attribute in the form of a vibrational frequency.
Similarly, an emotional imbalance also has a vibrational frequency. So if an individual is fearful, they may ingest the flower essence that floods their body with vibrations of courage in order to counteract the fear and begin to resonate in a state of courage and fearlessness. This is called sympathetic resonance and is the science behind this system.
Can you think of a time that you felt better simply by being around a happy person? Vibrations can be contagious and flower essences are a way to acquire the positive vibration of a particular flower.
The human body has within and surrounding it an electrical network. When we experience health, this electrical network is balanced and fully connected. When something in our life or environment threatens that balance, the electrical system responds by either short-circuiting or overloading.
That imbalance in the electrical system immediately impacts the central nervous system. The body then goes into high gear in an effort to correct the imbalance. If your body does not succeed, we physically manifest the imbalance. We get a cold or a headache, or our allergy pops up again or another migraine belts us. Or we get back pain, or our neck goes out again. Or we become seriously ill.
Flower essences work directly with both the electrical and the central nervous systems. By taking the correct essences, we immediately balance the electrical system, stabilize the nervous system, and stop the domino effect that leads to illness.
If we wind up getting sick, we can take the flower essences that will then stabilize and balance the electrical and nervous systems while the body gets on with the business of fighting off the problem. By assisting this process, flower essences drastically reduce our recovery time. In short, by using the essences, we are not asking our body to pull double duty ~ to do the work to heal us systemically and rebalance our electrical and central nervous systems.
The field of psychoneuroimmunology acknowledges the harmful influence of stress on the immune and nervous system. Flower Essences can help. They are a gentle and effective way of supporting a wide array of emotional dispositions that prevent an individual from living a happy, stress-free life. They can also comfort us in times of distress.
Flower essences can also help us recognize, resolve, or release different conditioned ways of perceiving the world and can help us experience greater well-being and harmony in our lives. By creating harmony within us, we often notice distinct changes in ourselves physically, emotionally, and spiritually.
Flower essences can help us reduce stress in our lives, resolve old traumas, and deal with painful or negative emotions. They have helped many people to know and understand themselves, so they could more creatively find a sense of direction and life work. They can be used for short-term support in coping with difficult situations, as well as for long-term growth and change. Most people report feeling better about themselves and find an improved attitude toward life.
Some people believe that flowers are a physical manifestation of a universal principle or aspect of God. Many of those who use flower essences over a long period of time report a deepening sense of spiritual understanding. Each flower seems to have a specific theme, lesson, or aspect of a universal principle that it embodies. In this sense, flower essences represent the spirituality of flowers.
How To Use Flower Essences
Flower essences are a strong ally to wellness and can be integrated easily into any daily ritual. You can add them to any liquid that you ingest or apply topically such as morning coffee, water, juice, shampoos. You can also add them to your scent diffuser or mopping solution.
Suggested dosages are as follows:
Most flower essences can be used as they are from their original stock bottles. Use 4 drops under the tongue, repeat 4 times a day, or as needed. To enhance its effects, use it more often instead of increasing the number of drops. If you accidentally touch the glass pipette, rinse it thoroughly with hot water before putting the dropper back into the bottle to avoid contamination.
- Orally, with water
Add 4 drops to a glass with water, repeat 4 times a day, or as needed.
It is not necessary to take flower essences orally. You can use any flower essence directly on the physical body. Some people like rubbing a few drops on chakra points or acupuncture points, or any place where your intuition directs you.
They can also be used by adding 7 drops to a sprayer bottle filled with water and misting a room or yourself. You can also spray clothes before ironing them, or spray your pillow before sleeping.
Another way of using a flower essence is to add a dropper full to your bath. What is important to remember is that flower essences are vibrational solutions, and surrounding yourself with them, inside or outside, is the best way to experience their effects.
- Using with children
Babies and children respond very well to flower essences. A powerful and simple way to use them is by placing a few drops on your hands and touching gently the baby or child. You can also use 4 drops in a glass, sippy-cup, or baby bottle, with water. Repeat 4 or more times a day or as needed.
- Using with animals
Pets and animals respond very well to flower essences. Use 4 drops in the animal’s drinking water, repeat 4 times per day, or as needed. For horses or other large animals, use 10 to 20 drops at a time.
Another powerful way to use them is by placing a few drops on your hands and stroking the animal down the spine or other parts of the body. The length of time to use an essence may vary from a few days to a few weeks. A guideline is to observe the animal’s behavior and use as needed.
- Dosage bottles
If you are taking more than one flower essence at the same time, a convenient way to do so is to prepare what is called a dosage bottle, also known as a mixing bottle.
To prepare a dosage bottle, add 4 drops of each flower essence to a 1 ounce bottle (30 mL) filled with a solution of 75% water and 25% brandy, and take 4 drops, 4 or more times a day, as needed.
The 38 Remedies
Each of the 38 remedies discovered by Dr Bach is directed at a particular characteristic or emotional state. To select the remedies you need, think about the sort of person you are and the way you are feeling.
- Agrimony – mental torture behind a cheerful face
- Aspen – fear of unknown things
- Beech – intolerance
- Centaury – the inability to say ‘no’
- Cerato – lack of trust in one’s own decisions
- Cherry Plum – fear of the mind giving way
- Chestnut Bud – failure to learn from mistakes
- Chicory – selfish, possessive love
- Clematis – dreaming of the future without working in the present
- Crab Apple – the cleansing remedy, also for self-hatred
- Elm – overwhelmed by responsibility
- Gentian – discouragement after a setback
- Gorse – hopelessness and despair
- Heather – self-centredness and self-concern
- Holly – hatred, envy and jealousy
- Honeysuckle – living in the past
- Hornbeam – tiredness at the thought of doing something
- Impatiens – impatience
- Larch – lack of confidence
- Mimulus – fear of known things
- Mustard – deep gloom for no reason
- Oak – the plodder who keeps going past the point of exhaustion
- Olive – exhaustion following mental or physical effort
- Pine – guilt
- Red Chestnut – over-concern for the welfare of loved ones
- Rock Rose – terror and fright
- Rock Water – self-denial, rigidity and self-repression
- Scleranthus – inability to choose between alternatives
- Star of Bethlehem – shock
- Sweet Chestnut – Extreme mental anguish, when everything has been tried and there is no light left
- Vervain – over-enthusiasm
- Vine – dominance and inflexibility
- Walnut – protection from change and unwanted influences
- Water Violet – quiet self-reliance leading to isolation
- White Chestnut – unwanted thoughts and mental arguments
- Wild Oat – uncertainty over one’s direction in life
- Wild Rose – drifting, resignation, apathy
- Willow – self-pity and resentment
This post can also be found at The Encyclopedia of Herbology, a page which has more in depth information on each of the 38 remedies.
Dr Bach’s central message:
We are all healers. Everyone can use the remedies. Everyone can heal and in the process understand who they are and take charge of their own destinies.