Wellbeing through Flower Essences
by Maria Doherty, Flower Essence Practitioner since 2008
What Is A Flower Essence?
An essence is the energetic imprint of the life-force or vibration of the flower. The imprint is captured using sunlight in spring water to create a "Mother Tincture". A preservative such as brandy is added and from this mother tincture the stock bottle is made which in turn is used to make the dosage bottle. Alternatives to alcohol are available, though the amount of brandy in the dosage bottle is small.
The Flower Essence dose is measured in drops taken orally, usually four drops four times a day. One dosage bottle lasts three to four weeks. The essence can also be put in a moisturiser or a spray. As there is no biological content of the original flower, the essences are non-toxic.
It is not possible to overdose, there are no side effects and they do not interfere with medication. Flower essences are safe to use with babies, children, adults and the elderly and may also be used with animals.
It is important to understand that these essences do not take the place of medical treatment for serious health conditions. They do not take the place of GPs or other health professionals if there is a history of mental health issues.
The essences work on the emotional levels and are not medications for physical ailments such as arthritis, liver complaints or broken bones. They do, however, help in giving support to the overall recovery process.
Dr Edward Bach (pronounced "Batch") 1886 - 1936
Dr Bach was an English physician who practised orthodox medicine and developed a natural form of medicine using flower essences to treat emotional and spiritual health. He himself struggled with serious health issues throughout his life.
Dr Bach believed that in illness the personality is more important than physical symptoms. He thought that attitude can have an effect on one's state of health. He became dissatisfied with the limitations of orthodox medicine which focused on curing symptoms. He believed it was important to address the cause of illness.
In 1930 Dr Bach gave up his medical practice on Harley Street and travelled through rural England to develop his renowned Bach Flower Essence range. When he gave his full attention to a flower he attuned to its energy and vibration. From this he intuitively deduced the positive influence it could bring on specific negative states and therefore bring the individual back into balance. Dr Bach began by collecting morning dew but found when exposed to sunlight the drops became more potent. His procedures then changed to floating flowers in water for several hours in the sunshine. Dr Bach developed 38 single flower essences. His most popular essence is a combination of five flowers which make up his “Rescue Remedy” for crisis and emergency situations (shock, bereavement, exam or interview stress). Other examples of his essences include Larch to promote confidence and self-assurance, Mimulus for courage and to help cope with fears and phobias and Gorse to feel hopeful and positive.
Dr Bach pioneered the use of Flower Essences in the 20th century. Today, there are Flower Essence producers all over the world with many of the well-known ones based in places such as Australia, Thailand, Alaska, Europe and the UK to name but a few. In my own practice I use a number of different ranges which I have encountered through my training to become a Flower Essence Practitioner.
How do they work?
Flower Essences work by bringing the individual back into balance. A person can come out of balance due to stress, anxiety, grief, loss of confidence or life challenges which can cause overwhelm or burn out. Flower Essences support us in getting back into balance so we can better cope in difficult situations. One does not need to be in crisis to benefit from Flower Essences as they can also be taken to promote a sense of wellbeing. It can be one of the tools that we have in our self-care tool kit. When we look after ourselves, we are in a better position to take care of others.
Maria Doherty, a Flower Essence Practitioner since 2008, lives in Edinburgh and is both a Paediatric Occupational Therapist and a complementary therapist.
Her journey with complementary therapies has led her to the Empowering Sensitive Children project. She works holistically with parents in order to give them the tools and techniques to support their children in achieving their potential and live happy and fulfilled lives.
Drop in to the Santosa Cafe on Tuesday, 6 February at 6.30 pm and join her as she shares the history and benefits of Flower Essences.
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Contact Maria by email: Maria