Bach Flower Remedies are a form of energy medicine and act by working with subtle energy in the body. According to the concept of energy medicine, disease manifests in the physical body only after energy flow in the subtle body (chakras and auric field) has been disturbed. Just as we might heal the physical body through medical interventions, we need to heal the subtle body through energetic interventions such as Bach Flower Remedies. Each remedy conveys a subtle energy pattern that is transferred to water during remedy preparation. Bach Flower Remedies address mental and emotional imbalances that, if left unresolved, could influence the wellness of the physical body. Remedies do not affect us biochemically, as does traditional allopathic medicine. They are water-based products that have no chemical or biological materials present other than water and alcohol preservatives.
Bach Flower Remedies are not:
- Homeopathic preparations. Homeopathic preparations often start off the same way as remedies do, with an aqueous solution of the source material. With homeopathy, a small volume of that solution is then diluted in a large volume of water and shaken many thousands of times. A small sample of the resulting solution is diluted further, then shaken again. This procedure is repeated until the required potency is reached.
- Herbal preparations. Tinctures, tisanes and decoctions all contain the chemical compounds present in the plant of source. If any of these preparations were subject to laboratory tests, the compounds could be identified and the source verified.
- Essential oils. These are concentrated extracts of the active aromatic chemical compounds in plant material and can also be identified from laboratory analysis.
- Medicines. Their preparation is too simple, too diverse, and too linked into nature to be able to be re-created in laboratory or other tightly controlled conditions. Attempts to make essences by high-tech processes destroy their intrinsic effectiveness.
No one knows for sure how the remedies work. What is known is that as energetic medicines they act in a similar way to homeopathic remedies. Each flower possesses a unique energy of a particular energetic wavelength. With ill health or emotional disturbance, the energy field which surrounds each living being becomes distorted and out of harmony resulting in a negative effect on the whole being, emotionally as well as physically. By selecting the right flower remedies, it is possible to correct the distortion in the energy field and potentially return the being to a state of health once more.
The Bach Flower Remedies don’t give us something we don’t already have. It is good if we think of them of them as reminding of us of what we already know, connecting us to what we have always possessed, accentuating our innate abilities. Often, this means fostering awareness of what is out of balance. It may mean the empowerment of hidden strengths or gifts which create inventive solutions to our problems. Or our resident healing abilities may become freed so they can do their work.
The Bach Flower Remedies are perhaps the most widely known form of this type of healing. Dr Edward Bach studied medicine at University College Hospital, London, qualified in 1912. He worked in general practice in London’s famed medical sector Harley Street and as a bacteriologist and pathologist working on vaccines. Bach believed that the illness-personality link was a product of unbalanced energetic patterns within the subtle body, and that illness was a reflection of disharmony between the physical personality and the Higher Self. Bach took a post at the Royal London Homeopathic Hospital (1919), where he noticed the parallels between his work on vaccines and the principles of homeopathy. Although his work up to this point had been with bacteria, he wanted to find healing modalities that would be less toxic and more in tune with the mind-body link. To this end, he began collecting plants in the hope of replacing the nosodes (homeopathic remedies prepared from infected tissues) with a series of gentler remedies. In 1928, Bach acquired two wildflowers, impatiens and mimulus, which he homeopathically prepared and clinically used with excellent results. He soon understood that there was great healing power in flowers, and he gradually developed his own methods of preparing flower essences. In the early 1930s, Bach left his successful practice and began gathering wildflowers, which he developed into the 38 Bach Flower remedies.