Living In Perfect Harmony With Bach And His Flower Remedies
From Harley Street physician to pushing essences of flowers is a far cry but Dr. Edward Bach (1886-1936) was so convinced about what he was doing that he turned away from a thriving conventional medical career to pursue what he firmly believed in. Right through his years of being a doctor, he just could not give up the notion that it was Nature not man who had the answer to disease. His quest took him through the bylanes of Wales and the woody paths around Oxfordshire where he lived, looking for flowers that he believed had curative powers. As he started treating patients with the essences of these flowers, he realised that what he had to look for and treat were the symptoms of the heart and the mind. When he treated those, the patient got better.
What Edward Bach left behind spread throughout the world and more and more people who were turning away from conventional medication and looking for more holistic alternative remedies came, tried and were amazed. Bach had 38 flower remedies (one was misnamed as it was spring water found deep under rocks) in his repertoire and there was one – the 39th – that was made up of a combination of five of these essences. His firm belief that what people think and feel have a strong effect on their bodies is borne out today by many doctors who practise conventional medicine too. He was influenced to a great extent by the father of homeopathy, Dr. Samuel Hahnemann and he tried to group patients into types and treat them. He started with two flower essences, added one at the end of that year and very soon had built up what he felt was the whole range necessary to take care of all people’s ailments of the mind.
Bach firmly believed that man was made to exist in harmony with nature and free of all illness. It was because mentally, emotionally and spiritually man had turned away from his higher self and embraced the baser things that he was prone to illness. However, Nature, as understanding as ever, had just the flowers to raise him up to his level of perfection – if only he tried them. Each flower essence is for a particular feeling or frame of mind.
Many physicians and people of the time looked askance at what he was propagating – how could a doctor turn away from his noble profession? And how could the essence – not even the flower itself – be strong enough to deal with illness? For Bach, the essence was initially obtained by collecting the dewdrops on the flowers because he believed that the energy of the flower passed into the water. However, this was soon not enough for his growing practice so he mixed the dewdrops with brandy and then further diluted it for his patients. This too was not enough so he started suspending the flowers in spring water and then allowing the sun’s rays to pass through them so the water would be energised with the flower power.
What exactly is this flower power? Bach believed that it was the vibrational imprint that each flower had and left behind in the water when the sun’s rays passed through. Each flower had a different vibration and when a patient with a particular ailment took it, his vibration would change for the better. These flowers have within them the power to raise a man’s energy levels and to change his mental make up to a more positive one. When this happens, the effects are seen within the body. This was essentially what Bach’s book ‘Heal Thyself’ was about. The wonderful thing was that even if one were to take the wrong flower remedy, while it would not have a positive effect on the mind, there would be no negative or side effects which is what makes these remedies so safe.
Here are Bach’s 38 flower remedies and the 39th – Rescue Remedy - which is the most well known one of them all.
Agrimony, Aspen, Beech, Centaury, Cerato, Cherry Plum, Chestnut Bud, Chicory, Clematis, Crab Apple, Elm, Gentian, Gorse, Heather, Holly, Honeysuckle, Hornbeam, Impatiens, Larch, Mimulus, Mustard, Oak, Olive, Pine, Red Chestnut, Rock Rose, Rock Water, Scleranthus, Star of Bethlehem, Sweet Chestnut, Vervain, Vine, Walnut, Water Violet, White Chestnut, Wild Oat, Wild Rose, Willow, Rescue Remedy.