Flower essences – just what are they?

In the late1920′s Dr. Edward Bach a successful homeopath began the search for another way of healing – and found it. This article briefly covers the core similarities and differences between strictly homeopathic medicines and flower essences.

The first major difference is in how the uses of the remedies are discovered, and confirmed as medicines. The uses for homeopathic remedies are found by proving – testing a medicine on healthy volunteers who, after taking a sufficient amount of the proposed remedy, exhibit a complex of symptoms for which the remedy might be used. Matching the symptoms produced by the remedy against a patient with those symptoms is the next step. When the proposed remedy actually works it moves on through a technical/bureaucratic process to become an official homeopathic remedy.

Dr. Bach was considered a very sensitive person. He discovered the uses of the 38 remedies by holding the plant* or the dew from off of a plant in his hand. He sensed what its uses might be from the way they made him feel. In this way he tested many plants – ultimately coming up with 38 remedies. Many plants were rejected and no plants were used that were known to have negative effects in their crude state, E.g. Belladonna.

*Rock Water isn’t a plant, but water from a well having a history of healing. 
As patients came to him he matched his observations of the patient (& what the patient said) with his remedy picture of the essences. He believed that the mental emotional state of a person set them up for illness on the physical plane. His work involved matching a flowers essence with the mental emotional state of a person, and having administered the correct remedy the person would be move toward healing the mental emotional issues and the physical complaint(s) as well.

He was quite successful and wrote extensively, and had a small team of assistants, and from this foundation many others have been able to use the flower essences as he did.

Note: He had one combination medicine Rescue Remedy that he used in traumatic emergencies – whether physical, mental/emotional, or both.

Another major difference between homeopathic medicine and flower essences is in how the medicines are made.  Without going into great technical detail — The homeopathic medicines that are made from plants** are typically used when fresh, and for any given remedy the roots, leaves, flowers or perhaps the whole plant is designated to be used. The part to be used is chopped and otherwise broken down, and essentially covered with a predetermined mixture of alcohol and water. The mix is turned regularly and after a minimum of 14 days the mix is pressed out. The resulting liquid is called a tincture from which the higher potencies are made.

** Homeopathic medicines made from substances that do not breakdown in alcohol and water e.g., iron, calcium, etc. are triturated (ground in a mortar and pestle).

Flower essences are made by gathering the freshest, most perfect plants (usually the flower), which are placed in a plain glass bowl that has been filled with the purist water available.  This is allowed to sit in the sun for four hours. The plant is then plucked out of the water and an equal volume of brandy is added to the remaining water. This is the mother tincture.
The mix can be further diluted and succussed, or used in tincture form.

Dr. David Reilly at the Glasgow Homeopathic Hospital (Scotland) has completed his fourth double blind study on the treatment of allergic rhinitis using homeopathic medicines. Earlier studies published in the prestigious – British Medical Journal (BMJ) were critical and faultfinding in nature (I suppose that’s their job?), but his fourth study has been accepted without negative comment. BMJ urges larger studies “that really could change thinking”, but obviously they were impressed by the quality of the study itself and the outcome — 28% of the group taking the homeopathic remedy noted improvement while only 3% of the placebo group reported improvement.

More personal news/excitement — A documentary on homeopathy is being produced by Sharon Baker of Teleduction, Inc. She has been to France – Boiron, England – Helios, plus Boericke & Tafel in California, AND to our facility in Berkeley Springs, WV – Including the farm where we grow and do wild crafting. It will take a while to be finished but you can stay tuned via http://www.teleduction.com