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Stress Less: Flower Essence Therapy, Part 2

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Last time we talked about Edward Bach, the British homeopathic physician who combined homeopathy with the mind-body connection in treating emotional states such as chronic grief, loneliness, hypersensitivity, and lack of confidence in order to cure chronic health disorders.

Keep in mind that homeopathy is based on the idea that “like cures like.”

Bach developed his remedies by experimenting on himself. He placed under his tongue the dew from a variety of English plants, and then entered an almost meditative state to determine what physical and emotional sensations were surfacing.

Almost every plant yielded a variety of physical and emotional sensations, but only 38 plants produced emotional symptoms alone. These 38 became the basis of Bach Flower remedies, designed for healing emotional issues only–never for physical ones. Since the 1970s, hundreds of other provings by practitioners around the world have yielded a veritable library of flower essence remedies, now used for both physical and emotional problems.

For your personal use, staying with Bach’s original 38 remedies is likely quite sufficient. If you like the results you’re experiencing, you may later want to work with our WholeHealth Chicago certified flower essence therapist Seanna Tully. She’ll spend a lot of time exploring your physical and emotional symptoms and then assemble a personalized combination from the hundreds of essences currently available.

If you describe to your conventional doctor how a flower essence remedy actually works, expect a blank stare or a slow head shake in disbelief. Don’t waste your time patiently explaining that instead of acting like tranquilizers to blunt the emotions you feel about an unwelcome or negative thought, flower remedies gently coax your mind toward its positive opposite.

For example, if you take a concentrated form of the flower gentian, you might feel a sense of pessimism and apathy. But if you take a highly diluted solution of gentian, you’d begin to feel opposite emotions emerge, like faith, self-confidence, and optimism.

Not surprisingly, conventional physicians soundly ostracized Bach for his views. He was removed from the British medical register five years after his books were published and later he voluntarily abandoned his license to practice medicine.

Now, 70 years later, flower essence therapies are available worldwide. Not only do people use them for self-treatment, but an increasing number of holistically oriented psychotherapists and counselors are including them in their practices.

Next time: how to choose your remedies.

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