It is believed that flowers hold the essence or the life force of the plant, and when water is infused with flowers, the imprint of that particular floral energy is taken up by the water and preserved. When we consume this ‘energised’ water, the flower energy finds a resonance with the vibrations of our body
Since my teens I would have recurring bouts of cold and cough, and almost every other month would be on antibiotics. This continued for years and had become a way of life. Emotionally and physically I was “fragile” — I was always told that, and I had slowly started believing in that. As Louise Hay said, “you are the only thinker in your mind,” I wired my mind to believe that I am weak and my health would always be a concern. And every time I reinforced it, the thought went deeper and deeper into my soul.
I smiled, put up a brave front and hardly ever shared my mental and emotional agony with anyone. I thought “I am like that only”. That was okay — to feel bad, to hold anger, to be hurting, to occasionally harbour thoughts of harming myself… I wish someone would have given me then the Bach Flower remedy of Agrimony — a flower essence that helps you face your demons rather than suppressing your fears and sadness with a smile.
And then, I simultaneously encountered Nichiren Daishonin’s Buddhism (my husband introduced me to this) and Bach Flower Therapy (a family friend brought these remedies into my life). I believe that nothing is a coincidence in life and now in retrospect I understand how synchronised this was. Buddhism gently helped me undergo a subtle yet deep inner transformation, which is often referred to as “human revolution” and Bach Flower Therapy aided the process.
At first I took the flower essences without questioning, as just another medicine. However, my skepticism crept in and I started questioning the workings of the remedies. This led me to research more on them and in turn guided me to do a weekend course on Bach Flower Therapy from Ainsworth in London. So you see a “negative tendency” of disbelief worked as a catalyst for learning a healing therapy. That’s what you would call “changing poison into medicine”.
WHAT ARE BACH FLOWER REMEDIES?
They are neither homeopathy medicines, apart from being sold by homeopathy companies, nor are they essential oils. Flower essences are flower waters or water “energised” by flowers.
Bach Flower Remedies are 38 flower essences that comprise a complete system of alternative healing. These flower remedies were discovered by Dr Edward Bach in the 1930s in England. Dr Bach was a physician and homeopath. He believed that attitude, mind and emotions play a vital role in the health and well being of an individual, and when a person’s emotions are “balanced” or restored to their positive potential the health improves and ailments can in turn be cured.
The principle of flower essences is similar to any other vibrational healing therapy. Flowers have their unique energies and when the “essences” of these flowers are taken by us they affect our vibrations and bring in a balance. The way in which they are chosen, is determined based on the current emotions or personality of the individual. Therefore, you will not be given a particular remedy for your headache but for your emotional state while experiencing the headache. For instance, if I am having a headache I may get extremely irritable and impatient and would be advised to have Impatiens, but another person when experiencing headache may keep quiet and suffer silently because she doesn’t want to bother anyone else she should ideally take Agrimony; while another individual can get so perturbed by it that she will continue talking about it and in the process disturb others around her. Heather would be apt for her.
DO THE REMEDIES REALLY WORK?
That’s a very legitimate question and it should cross your mind. The answer to it is — Yes. These remedies can heal us. However, a lot of the healing involves a self transformation and depends on your current emotional state. When you go for a Bach Flower consultation you are gently led to recognise and own your emotions. Just the process of recognising your feelings can be extremely healing. For instance, I suffered from chronic cold and any slight change in temperature, climate or personal/professional life would trigger it. I started taking Walnut Bach Flower Remedy, a flower essence that helps us accept change. I also took Crab Apple Bach Flower remedy with it to get rid of negativity. Together these remedies helped me clear my mind and accept change as the single most important fact of life. When my attitude changed, slowly my chronic ailment disappeared. Dr Bach believed that these remedies in different combinations can balance and heal any emotion. It is important to bear in mind that the remedies won’t push down negative emotions; rather they will raise your vibrations or improve your life state to develop positive emotions, the way, for instance, music works in uplifting our mood or soothing ruffled souls. In other words, the remedies help us understand our troubles and thereby empower us to heal ourselves. The process is gentle and simple. While acute and emergency emotions get addressed quickly, chronic or prolonged feelings take a while to balance. However, within two weeks one should be able to perceive a change.
THE SIDE EFFECTS
The Bach Center explains that there are no “actual” side effects. In rare cases, there may be an upheaval of some negative emotions but like any other alternative remedy, it is akin to a cleansing effect. If the condition is acute, as an emergency, take Rescue Remedy till the emotions settle down. Any other symptom is usually coincidental.
Bach Flower Remedies can be taken by anyone. Even babies and expecting mothers can be given these essences. We all have emotions and it is natural for them to get disbalanced from time to time. It’s as common as cold, cough, flu or stomach bug. So whenever you feel emotionally disturbed, reach out for Bach Flower remedies.
SELECTING THE RIGHT REMEDIES
The thirty-eight remedies that are included in Dr Bach’s system of flower remedies are listed below with the traits and emotions that they heal:
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-selfishness, possessive love; Clematis-dreaming of the future without working in the present; Crab apple-the cleansing remedy, also for self-hatred; Elm-overwhelming feeling of responsibility; Gentian-lack of inspiration caused by a setback; Gorse-hopelessness and despair; Heather-self-centeredness and self-concern; Holly-hatred, envy and jealousy; Honeysuckle-living in the past; Hornbeam-tardiness and lethargy; Impatiens-impatience; Larch-lack of confidence; Mimulus-fear of known things; Mustard-deep gloom for no reason; Oak-compulsive plodding beyond 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. Rescue Remedy, a mix of five flower remedies-cherry plum, impatiens, star of Bethlehem, clematis and rock rose-to tide over crises or emergencies
The list above offers a brief overview of the remedies. To start with, you can first think what kind of a personality you are and what you are feeling right now and then check which situations/emotions from the list apply to your current state. Initially you may feel that you need all or several of them. Go over the list again and make note of the ones that seem to apply to you. If you are focused enough, your list wouldn’t go beyond 10-12 remedies. Now, ponder over this narrower list and bring it down to 6-7. This mix will in all probabilities be the best combination for you.
HOW TO TAKE THE REMEDIES?
There are various ways in which you can take the remedies, however, for beginners, I would recommend the “glass of water” method wherein you put two drops of each of your 6-7 chosen remedies.
For chronic problems, it’s best to make a remedy mix that will last you 2-3 weeks. In a 30 ml glass bottle with dropper (you will find it in homeopathy stores or you can even purchase it online) add two drops of your chosen remedies and/or four drops of Rescue Remedy — if it’s a part of your remedy selection — and top it up with mineral water. From this bottle take four drops directly or mixed in water or any beverage, four times a day.
You can also take the remedies “neat” on your tongue directly. The math is two drops of each chosen remedy and/or 4 drops of Rescue Remedy.
HOW LONG DO I HAVE TO KEEP TAKING THE REMEDIES?
Our difficulties can be seen as layers of an onion. Bach Flower Remedies help peel away the surface emotions and then the next layer emerges. There’s no need to jump the gun and try to unearth what’s not apparent. Don’t push yourself. Address only what you are prepared to face. Allow the remedies to work and a new layer of emotions emerge. Change your remedies when that happens. So this may seem like a continuous process but then self improvement is a lifelong process. Bear in mind that remedies are not habit forming. Benefits are long lasting, so you may not have to return to a remedy for a while. However, there may be a relapse but if you are attuned to the remedies, you will be able respond quicker.
While you can always select your own remedies, it would be best if you can discuss and take a recommendation from a therapist.
Even if you don’t talk to a therapist, discussing it with a friend would make it better. A lot of healing happens when there is somebody to listen to you. Remember a human contact needs to be kept alive.
Jhelum Biswas Bose’s book, Phool Proof talks about Indian flowers, their myths, traditions and usage. Published by Pengiun, Rs 299
Sunday, 29 September 2019 | Jhelum Biswas | in Agenda
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