What Are Flower Essences:
Flower essences are natural healing remedies made from plants and flowers. They are liquid preparations, available in either dropper bottles or spray top bottles and may be used both internally and externally. In addition to flower essences, gem elixirs and environmental essences are prepared and used in the same way. For simplicity’s sake, the term flower essences may be used to refer to any of these since they share the same general method and application.
Based on the principle that everything is made of energy, essences are vibrational remedies that help re-align the body’s electrical system, releasing energetic blockages that are held in the body on a molecular level. Once blockages are released, the path to healing is opened. Because they are energetic, they function on a deeper and more subtle level than other forms of therapeutic or health supplements. They can be taken as a compliment to professional therapy, or incorporated into anyone’s wellness or healing plan. Essences are holistic healers that address wellness on multiple levels: physical, emotional, psychological and spiritual.
Flower essence remedies have a wide range of body-mind healing applications. They assist in emotional and spiritual healing from past or present traumas; provide relief in stressful situations; energetic support for transitional periods such as moving or a change in work or relationship; release of old or negative patterns; balancing energy; spiritual development or spiritual practice; recovery; detoxification; strengthening the individual on many levels; deepening and understanding one’s sense of self; the capacity for expression; and expanding consciousness.
Flower essences may also be referred to as “energetic tinctures” because is no physical trace of the flower (or gemstone etc.) that the essence is made from; rather, the energetic pattern of that flower or gemstone is imprinted in the water-based solution of the stock essence. It is that energetic pattern that the body-mind utilizes to receive the healing qualities of the essences. This means that the essences work on an energetic level rather than on a digestive level, and therefore do not counter-indicate with other health supplements or medication you might be taking, making them safe and easy to use.
In addition to individual essences, combination formulas are made up of a combination of essences, or a combination of essences with the addition of essential oils (like those used in aromatherapy, which are made using a different process entirely). Some combination remedies are meant for internal use, while others are used externally as room sprays to improve the energetic quality of an environment (home, workplace, etc). There are also therapeutic herbal flower oils that contain flower essences, essential oils, and carrier or base oils, these are for external use only.
How Flower Essences Are Made:
The method of collecting, preparing and using flower essence remedies was pioneered by British physician and homeopath Dr. Edward Bach (1886 – 1936). In his search to create a natural and holistic method of healing that would address not only physical, but also emotional and spiritual conditions, Dr. Bach developed the first system of flower essences comprised of 38 different English flowers, and the well-known trauma and stress formula called Rescue Remedy. These are the classic Bach Flower Remedies, also called the English Flower Remedies.
The method of making a flower essence is relatively simple and direct in order to maintain purity and integrity, though much care and attention is required. Organically grown or wild crafted flowers and plant material are placed in a clear glass or crystal bowl of water, and allowed to infuse in an appropriate time and setting - out of doors, in nature. Brandy is added as a preservative, and the mother tincture is produced. The mother tincture is diluted to create the stock essence, which is bottled and sold.
How Flower Essences Are Used:
There are many effective ways to use flower essences, taken internally, essences may be consumed straight from the bottle or from a dosage bottle dilution (see below), or by adding a few drops of the essence to a glass of water or to a water bottle to be sipped throughout the day. The optimal times to take them are first thing in the morning, at bedtime, and 2 other times during your day. It is most effective to take several small doses throughout the day because the frequency, rather than the number of drops taken each time, increases their effectiveness.
Used externally, flower essences can be applied topically on energy points or targeted areas of the body, added to a bath, used as a room spray, misted over the body, or broadcast into a space (by putting a few drops of essence in a dish of water and leaving it in a room). Since they are vibrational remedies you will still receive the benefit by using them this way. If taken internally,
Flower essences can be used individually or in combinations. You can create your own personalized combination to suit your particular needs, or you can choose from one of the many combination formulas created by our flower essence companies.
Essences are primarily taken internally as drops under the tongue (sub-lingual). You can take them straight from the stock bottle, or you may choose to make a dosage bottle for yourself. This is particularly convenient if you are taking several essences at a time. You may create your own personal combination using up to 6 essences (if one of the essences used is a combination formula, it counts as 1 essence of the 6). Alternately, you may add the essences to a water bottle and sip over the course of the day, which is a very easy and convenient way to take essences.
If you choose not to ingest the essences, but still want to use them, they can be applied topically on energy points of the body, misted over the body in a water dilution, broadcast in a room, or added to a bath.
Making a Dosage Bottle:
Fill a 1oz dropper bottle (amber or cobalt are best to keep out light), mostly full with spring water. Add your stock essence drops to the dosage bottle. 2 - 6 drops of each essence can be used. Different companies indicate varying numbers of drops to use, but the amount of drops per dosage bottle is less important than the regularity with which you take the essences. The efficacy of the essences is increased by the frequency taken, rather than the actual number of drops ingested (this applies for taking the stock essence drops straight from the bottle, as well as using the dosage bottle method). For example, 4 drops taken 4 times a day will be more effective than 16 drops once a day.
You may combine up to 6 essences in one dosage bottle (though if you are including a combination formula, it counts as 1 essence of the 6).
Though not necessary, it is also suggested to preserve your dosage bottle. To do this, add 1 or 2 teaspoons of brandy to the dosage bottle (be sure to leave room in the bottle when adding the spring water).
Alcohol Sensitivity: If you prefer to preserve your dosage bottle without using brandy, you can replace the brandy with vegetable glycerine or apple cider vinegar in like proportions.
Choosing Flower Essences:
The easiest way to choose essences is through the descriptions and themes in our Wonderworks Flower Essence Repertory. There is a wealth of information in the Repertory, so don’t worry if it seems a bit overwhelming at first. The important thing to remember is that the cross referencing, definitions and themes are all there to help guide you to a better understanding of what is the specific nature of the issues or challenges that you would like help with, and to help you open to possibilities
Choosing essences can also be done by looking at and contemplating pictures of the flowers etc. You can reference the photos on our website or use the Alaskan Essences Flower Energy Cards. Some users chose by intuitive selection. You may use pendulum analysis, or kinesiology (muscle testing), however this method is feasible only if you have the bottles on hand, or are choosing them in person at Wonderworks. It may also be helpful to have a friend, health practitioner or counsellor work with you in the selection process. All methods of selection are valid, so choose what feels right for you. Being mindful of this process is an important part of working with essences and enhances your healing and awareness.
Tips for Using Flower Essences
When making your own personalized combinations, try to create a formula with focussed intention and include essences with complimentary themes. For example, if you are working on healing stress and anxiety, choose essences related to those themes (or how those themes are present for you). You can create personalized combinations for whatever themes and issues that you wish to address in your healing.
Combination formulas can be a great way to start working with essences, particularly if creating your own personalized combinations feels a bit daunting at first. The makers of the combination formulas take years to perfect their blends, and their research is combined with studies, testimonials and practitioner feedback to ensure high quality, efficacy and integrity with the formulas.
Because of the subtle nature of the essences, many people find it useful to compliment their use of essences with journal writing, to clarify their healing intention with the remedies and track progress. Essences often work so subtly and profoundly that you may not even be aware of the shifts taking place or the support you are receiving from the essences, so the reflections and observations recorded in your personal journal can help to enlighten your progress on your healing path.
Store your bottles upright in a safe dry place, such as a bathroom cabinet, storage container, or shelf. If carefully stored, their shelf life is several years.
If you find remembering to take your essences during the day a challenge, try dosing a water bottle for the day to get the benefit without having to worry about remembering to take the drops. For those with a busy lifestyle, this makes it much easier than having to remember one more thing to do in the day. Naturally, you will still have to remember to dose your water bottle when you start your day.
The method of broadcasting essences (putting a few drops in a small dish of water) can be combined with your spiritual practice by doing so from your personal altar. This is a wonderful way to use essences to enhance your altar, or deepen your meditation practice. Broadcasting essences can also be used for other purposes, for example, energy clearing, and reducing stressful or toxic energy in the environment.
Take a moment to visualize your intention as you take your essences. Putting some energy and focus to the action sends a positive message to your body-mind and supports the integration of beneficial energies. It also makes you an active participant in your own healing, which is a great act of self-care itself.