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by Candy Hillenbrand



Now we'll begin getting to know the individual Bach Flowers.


Here is a list of the Twelve Healers and the Seven Helpers. As I mentioned earlier, the Twelve Healers represent the twelve archetypal groups of humanity, or 12 primary types of personality. Bach felt that everyone fitted into one of these twelve categories, and even went so far as to link each of these twelve types and remedies with the twelve signs of the zodiac.


The Remedy The Twelve States/Faults The Twelve Great Virtues The Twelve Moods Displayed in Acute Illness Classification According to the Seven Attitudes
Impatiens Impatience Forgiveness Irritable, cross, peevish, impatient Loneliness
Mimulus Fear Sympathy Calm, but quietly afraid Fear
Clematis Indifference Gentleness Sleepy, drowsy, dreamy, no interest, seems far away Insufficient interest in present circumstances
Agrimony Torture Peace Although ill, bright & cheerful, make light of their trouble Oversensitivity to influences and ideas
Chicory Fussiness Love Worrying over details, fussing, want much attention & petting Over-care for welfare of others
Vervain Over-enthusiasm Tolerance Obstinate, strong-willed, don't like advice, difficult to help Over-care for welfare of others
Centaury Weakness Strength Weak, languid, weary, no energy, quiet, often timid and shy Over-sensitivity to influences and ideas
Cerato Self-distrust Wisdom Lack trust in self, seek advice from others, little self-confidence Uncertainty
Scleranthus Indecision Steadfastness Can't secide what they want or make up their minds Uncertainty
Water Violet Aloofness Joy Want to be left alone, to go away and be quiet Loneliness
Gentian Discouragement Understanding Depression, feel things aren't going right, doubt getting well Uncertainty
Rock Rose Despair Courage Terrified, sudden or serious illness causing great fear, all cases of urgency or danger Fear

SOURCE: Synthesised from, Julian Barnard (Ed), The Collected Writings of Edward Bach (1886-1936)

If a patient had not improved with what is considered the right one of the Twelve Healers, Dr Bach recommended giving treatment with one of the following Seven Helpers.


The Remedy Indication: Colour of patient Specific Indications Classification According to the Seven Attitudes
Olive Pale Pale, worn out, exhausted, perhaps after much worry, illness, grief or long struggle. Scarsely able to keep going. May depend much upon others. Skin may be dry and wrinkled. Insufficient interest in present circumstances
Gorse Pale Feel hopeless. Believe they have tried everything & nothing more can be done. Resigned to their illness & make no effort. Often have yellowish complexions & dark lines below the eyes. Uncertainty
Oak Pale Struggle very hard, are fighting to get well. Cross with themselves at being ill, because it stops them working. Feel there is not much hope of getting well, but will try everything. Despondency or despair
Vine High-coloured Very particular. Believe they know what is right for self & others. Critical & exacting. Give orders to those helping them. Difficult to satisfy. Want everything their own way. Over-concern for welfare of others
Heather High-coloured Big, robust, well-made, jovial & hearty. Concerned with every detail of their maladies & feel every small item is of much importance. Generally not had much illness, but a little complaint seems serious. Loneliness
Rock Water High-coloured Very strict with themselves. Give up what they like if they think it's bad for them & suffer anything if they think it's good. Have much courage & will face any treatment. Hard masters to themselves,and so lose much of the joy in life. Over-concern for welfare of others
Wild Oat May be required by anyone In cases which do not respond to other remedies, or when it seems difficult to decide which to give, try this for at least a week. If patient does well, continue while improvement lasts, before changing remedies. Uncertainty

SOURCE: Synthesised from, Julian Barnard (Ed), The Collected Writings of Edward Bach (1886-1936)


Interestingly, Bach was quite learned in astrology, but was very cautious about mentioning it. You will find this information in the book, The Collected Writings of Edward Bach, edited by Julian Barnard. For those of you who are interested, Bach said that our personality type was determined by the MOON SIGN at birth. He described the 12 types as the "twelve great lessons of life", and believed that we are concentrating on one of these lessons in particular. Astrologically, the moon sign describes our instinctual responses, our habit patterns and our emotional makeup. The idea is that through overcoming the instinctual and therefore entrenched primary negative emotional tendency of our Moon Sign, then we experience the challenge of our life, or its major 'lesson'. I think this is definitely a subject for future research. I'm mentioning this now, to give you some idea that there is a definite and well organised internal structure to the Bach Flowers.


Whereas the Twelve Healers are intended for acute emotional states or illness, the Seven Helpers were selected to treat more chronic states. These are indicated for conditions which have been going on for a long time, where the person has lost hope of getting better, or doesn't seem to exactly fit one of the 12 Healers.


So, if you can't afford to purchase the entire set of 38 remedies, I suggest that you begin with the 12 Healers, and then the 7 Helpers. You will be able to do a lot with just these few remedies.


The other interesting thing about the Bach Flowers is that Bach grouped them into seven categories as follows:


The Attitude
The Remedy
1. For fear Aspen, Cherry Plum, Mimulus*, Red Chestnut, Rock Rose*
2. For Uncertainty Cerato*, Gentian*, Gorse, Hornbeam, Scleranthus*, Wild Oat
3. For Insufficient Interest in Present Circumstances Chestnut Bud, Clematis*, Honeysuckle, Mustard, Olive, White Chestnut, Wild Rose
4. For Loneliness Heather, Impatiens*, Water Violet*
5. For Those Over-sensitive to Influence and Ideas Agrimony*, Centaury*, Holly, Walnut
6. For Despondency or Despair Crab Aple, Elm, Larch, Oak, Pine, Star of Bethlehem. Sweet Chestnut, Willow
7. For Over-care for Welfare of Others Beech, Chicory*, Rock water, Vervain*, Vine

* The original Twelve Healers are indicated by asterisks.

Just as an example, you can see that there are five different remedies for fear, and part of the art of prescribing the Bach Flowers involves distinguishing between the different types of fear or depression or whatever, and of course recognising which type of fear or depression you or your client is suffering from.

So with the FEAR example, Aspen is for vague fears of unknown or unconscious origin; Cherry Plum is for fear of losing control; Mimulus is for known fears such as fear of failing an exam; Red Chestnut is for those who are fearful for their loved ones and Rock Rose is for extreme terror. This system of classification is very useful, but it's not all inclusive.

For example, there are two types of DEPRESSION which are very important, but haven't been grouped under the heading Despondency or Despair. These are Gentian which is classified under Uncertainty and is indicated for a reactive depression suffered after a setback, and Mustard, which is classified under Lack of Interest in the Present, and is for the deep endogenous type of depression, that feels like a black cloud and descends suddenly for no apparent reason, but lifts just as suddenly.


So, it's important to become very familiar with the individual meanings of all the 38 Bach Flowers, as well as be aware of the individual categories that they are grouped under.

Copyright 1994-2001 by Candy Hillenbrand

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