©2002 by Donna Cunningham, MSW
Flower remedy makers are wisely guarded about discussing the physical applications of their essences, even when the flowers of well-known herbal plants like evening primrose, golden seal or echinacea (shown here at right) are used. There are several reasons for this caution, but the primary one is spelled F-D-A. Because so few research studies have been done that prove the effectiveness of flower remedies, the United States Food and Drug Administration has been known to inspect the major remedy companies and scrutinize their literature for claims that their products heal physical or psychiatric diagnoses. After a few instances of having to reprint labels and expensive catalogues and brochures, the major companies are now self-policing on this issue and lean over backwards not to trespass into the area of claiming physical healing.
We would recommend a similar level of cautiousness for essence practitioners in discussing any physical effects of the remedies they suggest to clients. For one thing, doing so can lay one open to a charge of practicing medicine without a license! Be that as it may, almost anyone who has been working with flower remedies for any length of time has seen some amazing improvement of physical ailments as the user's underlying emotional difficulties are cleared away. On the whole, I suspect this is most true of illnesses with a psychosomatic component like skin eruptions or stress-induced hypertension.
On the other hand, there are times when no particular emotional overlay is apparent and yet a flower remedy just does the job. Cases where Rescue Remedy had a profound physical effect are legion, and Gregory Vlamis' Flowers to the Rescue documents hundreds of them. Here is one from my own experience: I was once out on a walk with a friend who was deathly allergic to bee stings, and a bee flew onto her foot and stung her. I never leave the house without Rescue Remedy, so we applied it undiluted to her foot. By the time we got back to the house to call a doctor, the swelling had already gone down, and she was perfectly fine.
In another instance, I once attended a practitioner level training by the Flower Essence Society -- a wonderful sharing by the makers of those essences and by experienced flower remedy practitioners of many disciplines. I learned so much, but by the middle of the third day, I was completely brain-fagged, spaced-out and couldn't absorb another idea.
Someone gave me a hit of FES's Dill directly from the stock bottle, and I was immediately clear-headed and present -- and remained so for the rest of the seminar. Since then, I've been able to use Dill well and appropriately. I take a mixture of it along to fast-paced astrology conferences and share it with others who are exhausted from the over-stimulation.
Later, however, I had a striking demonstration of a physical application for this marvelous little essence. I was new to the Pacific Northwest and being a long-time New Yorker, I seriously underestimated the power of the wind, which is very strong here and highly ionically charged. I took a 50-mile drive with the car windows open in a high and very cold wind. The result was that I traumatized my inner ear.
I was very dizzy for several days, and it felt like people were talking much faster than I could hear. After about ten minutes of struggling with a conversation or a phone call, I'd want to cover my ears and run from the room. As that would seem weird, I managed to do the next best thing, which was to become progressively more spaced-out during the conversation. I also couldn't tolerate ordinary noises like my cat purring without becoming stressed.
Perhaps it was the spaced-out quality that gave me a clue, but I was intuitively prompted to make up a dosage bottle of Dill and take it several times a day. I was further prompted to put it on my brow chakra, around the base of my ears (at the hairline), and to rub a drop or two in the folds of my ear, being careful not to get it inside my ear.
Within two hours, the dizziness had markedly decreased and I was much less spaced-out. When people called, I was able to set limits on the length of the call. I continued to feel progressively better and was able to work productively. After less than 24 hours, I felt like myself again, but I continued the dosage for another 24 hours, by which time the symptoms had all disappeared. Now, am I saying that Dill will cure inner ear problems? No way! I'm just telling you what happened in this one instance. And who knows, there could have been a component of over-stim. The friend I had gone on the drive with was the sort who could talk your ear off!
Another difficulty with describing essences in terms of physical effects is that you never know when it might work or what condition it would address, for these vary by the individual who takes them. While a physician might say with confidence that a particular medication is for hypertension, another is for stomach ulcers, and still another is for asthma, no such specificity exists for flower remedies.
For example, Impatiens (shown here at right) is the Bach remedy for irritability on the emotional level, though in many instances it has made a difference with physical irritations as well. I myself witnessed it used at a conference in which a speaker accidentally inflamed his eye -- a cold compress soaked in Impatiens cooled it down in no time. However, even when Impatiens does work on a physical level, it might address a skin rash in one individual, high blood pressure in another, and stomach ulcers in a third, depending on where the physical vulnerabilities lie. Again, a major reason for these occurrences of physical healing may very well be through working on emotional irritations that lie just under the surface. We cannot say with any degree of certainty when or if a flower remedy would work on a given ailment.
When it comes to discussing physical conditions and how the remedies impact them, we here at Vibration Magazine have been gun-shy, for we would rather the F.D.A. never noticed us. As you can see in our writer's guidelines, our editorial policy has always been to avoid discussing physical healing properties of the remedies. We have turned down any number of quality articles because they primarily focused on physical ailments, and we have chopped some fascinating case histories out of other pieces for the same reason.
Therefore, in preparing this special issue of Vibration Magazine focusing on essences and physical well-being, we felt we were balancing on the razor's edge! How do we -- and the authors who have graced these pages -- discuss physical-world applications of the essences without crossing the line? We aren't entirely certain. We are going to do our best, and you can be the judge of how we succeed.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Donna Cunningham, MSW, is co-editor of this publication. Learn more about her and read more of her articles in this publication by clicking here.