Man has long recognised the healing properties of therapeutic plants and herbs, and their use dates back to ancient times.
Herbalists and many alternative health practitioners believe that natural plant preparations can support the body's natural healing processes, restoring balance and helping the body to heal itself. Flower essence therapy is a unique system based on plant essences in liquid form, which work to restore balance and good health, interweaving the mind and the body.
Healing with flowers is both ancient and universal. All cultures, including our own contemporary one, intuitively sense that flowers express a soul language which is far more profound that words. Flowers are used to convey our deepest feelings of joy, grief, love or tribute at a range of family events such as births, weddings, funerals and numerous other celebrations and commemorations in human culture.
Modern flower essence therapy has evolved from the work of Dr Edward Bach. The stages in his medical career mirror the spectrum of development within our modern culture as we seek to understand what creates wellness, wholeness and health within the human being. The model that is now emerging is one that incorporates many different aspects of human wellness, from standard medicine and surgical intervention to preventative measures which seek to bolster healthy immune responses in the human body.
As our understanding of the human energy field becomes more refined, we are beginning to perceive and treat the larger energetic structures which surround the physical body itself. We are recognising that the body and soul cannot be regarded as an opposing duality, but rather as one interweaving reality.
Especially since World War II, researchers have correlated distinct personality traits with specific diseases. One of the most famous of these studies was conducted by Drs Meyer Rediman and Raymond Rosenman who coined the term "Type A Behaviour" for the impatient, hostile attitude connected with the greater risk of heart disease.
Since the numerous studies have pinpointed the decisive role of emotional factors such as anger, grief, depression or self-esteem on the outcome of specific diseases as well as overall immunity. A whole new field of medical research has been established, designated as Psychoneuroimmunology (PNI), which has identified biochemical messengers which transmit emotional responses to and from the glands in the body, documenting definitive and substantive changes in emotional and physical wellness.
Seen from this perspective, flower essence therapy may be viewed as being on the vanguard of holistic medicine. It is perceived as a unique, uintegrative therapy which employs highly refined qualities from flowering plants to act within the physical matrix of the body, yet stimulates very precise states of psychological consciousness.
Flower essences are closely aligned to the field of homeopathy, since both use potenised medicines that affect trans-physical levels of the human being. However, homeopathic medicine incorporates a broad range of substances, including animal and mineral sources as well as different parts of plants.
By contrast, the flower essences are made specifically from fresh flowers collected from pristine habitats at the precise moment of flowering. The solar extraction methods which are thought to have been developed by Bach has brought forth a new genre of medicines which are uniquely capable of addressing more delicate and subtle aspects within the emotional and mental field of the human being.
The flower essences are also distinguished from psychopharmaceutical agents. Flower essences seem to work as catalysts. They do no suppress symptoms; rather they stimulate consciousness by introducing new information into the emotional and mental fields of the individual.
Flower essences are thought to work in a way similar to our experience of music or art; through the vehicle of sound or light we perceive something that moves or inspires us. The essences operate through the medium of water, which holds and imprint of the colour, form and beauty of the flower in a way that speaks to the feelings and thoughts within the individual. Thus flower essences reveal rather than conceal aspects of the Self, so that new choices can be made about life issues. Because they are potenised energetic medicines, they work in a different manner which is gentle and life-affirming without danger or overdose or long-term dependency.