Chicory 2016 3

Have you ever sulked because someone close to you has not reacted how you think they should have and you felt offended and hurt? I mean, you really did a lot for them, you love them very much and now they are not giving anything in return. This behaviour is also called going into a huff. I like that expression. The Thesaurus tells me that the origin of this word is mid-15th century from the sound of breathing out, expiring with indignation. The negative Chicory state is about caring and loving people one is close to but getting uptight if “not enough” comes back in return. You have been attentive and now you expect some reciprocation. If that does not turn up, one might become demonstrative – to get the message home. There is an implicit deal: I have done something for you, now you have to do something for me, or at least be nice to me, “love” me. It is the opposite of unconditional love, and I guess we all do it at one level or another. Someone in a negative Chicory state can also be over-anxious and interfering in that s/he has plenty of ideas what could be better for the “loved one.” 

Chic 2016 1

One of the first things a child does instinctively in its life is cry to get the attention of its mother and the message is FEED ME! She will usually then nurse the child and at the same time, love and care for it. This is of course, normal behaviour. However, this interaction pattern has to modify if emotional balance is to develop as the child matures. We all know kids who cry to get what they want from their parents, this is when the “Chicory mode” becomes demanding and coercive: Have you ever waited in a supermarket queue watching a child pressurizing a parent by having a screaming fit because the mum or dad won’t buy the sweets they want? Always makes me feel uncomfortable when I see that scene. (And the supermarkets do intentionally place sweets at children’s eye level, reckoning with this kind of behaviour.)

Transforming a negative Chicory state means comprehending that real love interaction with those close to us means giving without any strings attached. In a positive Chicory state we lose our neediness and then it is no longer necessary to act with emotional blackmail, or to be huffy. One gives without expecting anything in return, allowing the loved person become totally free. The positive Chicory person spreads selfless security, genuine love, kindness and warmth with no restrictions. And I suppose getting there (just for a few moments) is a life long task ;-)

Edward Bach has the following words to say on this topic: “If we but sufficiently develop the quality of losing ourselves in the love and care of those around us, enjoying the glorious adventure of gaining knowledge and helping others, our personal griefs and sufferings rapidly come to an end. It is the great ultimate aim: the losing of our own interests in the service of humanity.”

 Chic 2016

Read previous blog postings via links on the right or scrolling down!

emotional baggage bach flower remediesEmotional baggage is a metaphorical term implying a "load" that people carry with them. It means that negative feelings we have not let go of are affecting present behaviour and mindsets. That can be the pain of disappointment or rejection, trauma, any kinds of distressing previous experiences and their memories. Emotional baggage comes to the fore in relationships and is often rooted in childhood. This is where the beauty of the Bach remedies comes in. Using them, we ask “how do I feel?" Honest answers will uncover emotional baggage and lead to resolving it, for we alone carry our baggage, no one else. And we alone can let it go.
Here are five remedies, briefly described, that came to mind while I was thinking about this topic. Certainly, there are more and I'd love to hear your thoughts!

Pine emotional baggage- Someone who carries a state of shame and guilt with themselves has a Pine state.There have been shocking revelations about child abuse in the Church recently. Many victims kept quiet for years and the abuse must have had a major effect on their ability to have happy and satisfying personal relationships. One gets an inkling of what kind of trauma and "emotional baggage" the victims must have carried (and perhaps still carry). Pine helps get over shameful, guilty, self-reproachful feelings. Photo: the flowers of the pine tree, Pinus sylvestris

Red Chestnut bachblüten- A child who has lost a parent during childhood may carry a continual fear throughout their life about others they are close to - their children, partners, the remaining parent - that something may also happen to these people too. Red Chestnut helps us relax and develop trust that everyone has their own journey in life and that we can only influence it to a certain extent. We have calm thoughts towards loved ones in a positive Red Chestnut state, not worried ones. Photo: the flowers of the red chestnut tree, Aesculus x carnea

Willow bachblüten- Many people carry a lifelong resentment towards their parents. In the negative Willow state one feels one is a victim and it is their parents fault that one has problems, feels bitter and resentful. (And no, I guess no one has perfect parents, and no one is a perfect parent either!) Willow helps heal, forgive and forget and develop a mature, constructive relationship with parents. Photo: flowers of the willow tree, Salix vitellina

water violet emotional baggage- Some children learn to withdraw early in life if their parents or teachers are critical, dismissive or aggressive. Later in life a person who has not learnt to talk about their feelings might clam up when difficulties arise. Which in turn creates more difficulties. This is the negative Water Violet state and it makes us feel protected in isolation; others cannot reach or hurt us. It is the remedy of choice if one withdraws in emotionally challenging situations, resisting others getting close to us. Water Violet helps reduce aloneness and nourishes the ability to connect with others. Photo: the flowers of the water violet herb, Hottonia palustris

Agrimony 2016 2

- Another pattern that can develop in childhood when a young person is repeatedly confronted with critical comments or aggression from attachment figures is the habit of brushing over difficulties. One learns to make small of problems, humouring those around with false cheeriness, avoiding the real issues because it hurts too much. This strategy leads to lack of authenticity and estrangement from one's true self. Agrimony is the remedy of choice if this kind of habit has developed. It helps us become the person we really are. Photo: the flowers of agrimony, Agrimonia europaea

Sometimes Edward Bach’s writing style may appear a little outdated. He was a child of his times (as we all are) and that was Victorian. Here, in a nutshell and in present day words, is how I understand Edward Bach’s wonderful philosophy:

-           we are here to fulfil our potential and develop ourselves

-           everyone has a unique personality; unfolding it is part of life's journey

-           accepting negative patterns and developing virtues makes for well-being

-           learning and collecting experience is what life is all about

-           if you are truly happy, you are healthy

-           inner peace is the foundation of well-being

-           personal harmony means aligning our personality with our Higher Self

-          we may trust our inner voices

-          influencing others is a source of dis-ease*, freedom is our birthright

-          being genuinely present is part of healthiness

* the word disease originally comes from the opposite of “ease” and did not originally mean illness.

Are there any aspects of Bach’s teachings and philosophy you do not agree with? I would love to read your comments!

Here are some inspirational Edward Bach quotes, the first of which I find especially relevant with regard to the terrible attacks the world has recently experienced:

“True, hate may be conquered by a greater hate, but it can only be cured by love: cruelty may be prevented by a greater cruelty, but only eliminated when the qualities of sympathy and pity have developed: one fear may be lost and forgotten in the presence of a greater fear, but the real cure of all fear is perfect courage.”

p. 2 - Ye Suffer From Yourselves Out of my window 2

“The action of these remedies is to raise our vibrations and open up our channels for the reception of our Spiritual Self, to flood our natures with the particular virtue we need, and wash out from us the fault which is causing harm. They are able, like beautiful music, or any gloriously uplifting thing which gives us inspiration, to raise our very natures, and bring us nearer to our Souls: and by that very act, to bring us peace, and relieve our sufferings.” p. 5 - Ye Suffer From Yourselves

Gorse Bach flower remedy

“Possibly the greatest lesson of life is to learn freedom. Freedom from circumstance, environment, other personalities, and most of all from ourselves: because until we are free we are unable fully to give and to serve our brother-men.” p. 6 - Ye Suffer From Yourselves

Clematis Bach flower remedy

“We … are personalities down here for the purpose of gaining all the knowledge and experience which can be obtained through earthly existence, of developing virtues which we lack and of wiping out all that is wrong within us, thus advancing towards the perfection of our natures.” p. 10 - Heal Thyself

Bach remedy Honeysuckle 1

“…let us not fear to plunge into life; we are here to gain experience and knowledge, and we shall learn but little unless we face realities and seek to our utmost. Such experience can be gained in every quarter, and the truths of nature and of humanity can be won just as effectively, perhaps even more so, in a country cottage as amongst the noise and hustle of a city.” p. 25, Heal Thyself

Read Heal Thyself, and Ye Suffer From Yourselves by downloading the texts from the Bach Centre website.

blackbird rescue remedyI was sitting quietly at Joe's place reading one afternoon when there was sudden thud on the window and, looking up, I realised that a bird had flown into the glass. I could see a few downy feathers floating in the air. Jumping up and shouting to Joe who was in another room, I ran to the balcony (his lounge is on the first floor) and lent over expecting to see a dead bird. A blackbird lay about 4m below on the wooden terrace, its right wing stretched out at such an angle that I was sure it was broken. I was already running downstairs when I thought of the rescue remedy and called to Joe to bring it from the kitchen. He joined me a few seconds later and gave me the pipette of the little bottle which he had already opened. I started to carefully approach the bird, I could see that the bird was breathing fast and its eyes were closed. I talked quietly and avoided sudden movements and anxiously took the bird into my hand. Briefly, I marvelled at its perfection, it was a young male bird, probably a fledgling from last year and it had a few white feathers around its beak. I quickly put several drops of the rescue remedy on its beak. Immediately, it opened its mouth and eyes and shook its head, its dazed eyes blinking at me. It did not panic in my hands. Luckily, neither its neck nor wing was broken. I gave it more of the remedy and then, still murmuring quietly, and moving softly, I stood up and placed it in the bushes for it to recover. Half an hour later Joe reported that the bird was no longer there.

bird 1088105 180BLACKBIRD

A day later we arrived by car at Joe’s place after shopping and, as I got out of the car, I noticed a blackbird in the hedge next to the parking place in front of the house. I stood still, mesmerized by an almost tangible contact to this bird, feeling its bright black eyes watching me. To my amazement, it hopped twice on twigs towards me, instead of flying away, as one would expect. I saw that it was the same blackbird from the accident the previous day – it came so close that I could see the white feathers around its beak. As Joe got out of the car and spoke to me the bird was startled and it flew away leaving me touched and very surprised...Blackbird bach flower remedies

We know Dr Bach’s story of The Travellers, the remedies as figures walking through a wood. I have had some fun updating the story into the internet as follows ;-)

Fotolia 5155900 XS

Agrimony is surfing happily under various identities with a well functioning alias and several pseudo-names. Avatar games are the right thing for her. Cerato has just set up a forum looking for help and advice from others. Rock Rose has just discovered she’s opened a phishing mail and is panicking because her online bank account might get hacked. Impatiens is annoyed with her browser which is crashing; she clicked it too often, it hadn’t opened quickly enough. She is moving to her smart phone and has just hit the touch screen 6 times.

on the SmartphoneRock Water is working on her collected data from recent weeks about her jogging progress. She has a Cloud-connecting health monitoring device and is aiming to improve her condition via disciplined self-tracking. Scleranthus is trying to book her summer holidays online. She went to a site and then to another and another and could not decide where to book, and is now going offline. Elm is going offline too, she’s overwhelmed by everything.

Vervain has just set up a lengthy Cc. list in her email account to all her contacts. She wants to get everyone to join the latest worthy campaign, asking all friends and acquaintances to sign but also pass on the link to all their contacts!

Oak is studying the online manual on page 262 of the pdf, plodding on until she understands how to use the new iPad, she will not give up until she has finished reading. on the iPad

Heather is busy writing a detailed customer review for Amazon (3 pages) about her experiences with her new vacuum cleaner. Water Violet is hesitating liking something on Facebook, but does enjoy quietly reading what people have posted. Mimulus is also hesitant online, she’s a bit frightened of the internet, she has heard of all the alarming things that happen to people who register anywhere. 

OnlineCherry Plum is about to throw her tablet PC on the floor any minute now because the programme she installed last week is not working. The online help portal is not helpful, not only that, the newly installed programme seems to have disturbed the whole workings of her computer and she cannot open any of her documents.

And then there is someone offline - Clematis - she has forgotten her computer password and is sitting there quietly, dreamily and cannot login…smile 5

 

Next time: The crisis mixture and treatment of a wild animal, an excerpt from my book One Person’s Journey. Short stories about Dr Bach’s flower remedies.

The prettiest village ever seen

The fairy tale atmosphere I felt at Mt Vernon I also sense as I start my walk around the village of Brightwell-cum-Sotwell where the Bach Centre is situated. I am aware that the village has a 1,000 history. There are no street lights or lamp posts alongside the roads, there are no markings on the road, and neither can I see any signposts for traffic. There are dozens of old thatched cottages with lush front gardens and I spot a few houses that obviously stem from Tudor times, perhaps earlier. Many of the houses have dates incorporated into their walls and I start a little competition with myself trying to find the oldest house. If it weren’t for the few cars lining the road here and there it would be easy to imagine that I had travelled in time and I was now in the mid 19th century. 

Sotwell thatched house1688 Sotwell  Sotwell house

Some of the hedgerows are huge and tower over the road; they are certainly at least a hundred years old. The variety of plants along the wayside indicates a healthy ecosystem, bees hum and birds are singing loudly, competing with one another. Some enormous oak trees also line the road which are certainly several hundred years old. There is something amazingly undisturbed about the village which I decide is one of the prettiest places I have ever seen. I come across St James church and know that this is where Dr Bach was buried in 1936. Strangely, there is an old red chestnut tree next to the church and also a holly tree at the entry to the graveyard. 

Walking around the old graveyard (I cannot go into the church as it is locked up), I quickly spot Dr Bach’s grave with the inscription Behold I am alive for evermore which touches me, and tears prick my eyes for a few seconds. I realise for the umpteenth time how this one man has touched ten of thousands of people and gratitude swamps me as I silently walk away.

Dr Bachs grave

 St James church Sotwell

Watch a photo story with music on YouTube about Brightwell-cum-Sotwell and Mt. Vermon which summarizes these first three blog posts...

Brightwell-cum-Sotwell - website

Next time: The Travellers – I have updated the piece Dr Bach wrote about the characters as remedy personalities wandering in a wood. In my version new the figures are now on the Internet. ;-)

Are you familiar with his original story? If not, here it is.

Join me for a step inside Mt. Vernon

After the brightness and warmth of a summer’s day outside in the garden, it is cool inside and rather dark. Mt. Vernon is a very small house which was built in 1892. Having entered the front door, there is no hall, I stand infront of the stairs leading to the next floor where the Bach Centre offices are. To my left and my right are two little sitting rooms. I step into the left room and see the dark bulky furniture that Dr Bach made in the winter's of his time at Mt. Vernon. 

Victor Bullen Nora WeeksDr Bachs typewriter the left front room at Mt. Vernon

Everything appears quaint and old fashioned and has been hardly altered since the thirties; it is like a miniature museum. I sit down in one of the old chairs and take a look around. Again here I sense an almost uncanny peace, as in the garden. It is easy to imagine previous owners chatting here in evenings long past. I see Dr Bach’s black typewriter and think of some of his writings he typed on that (probably) loud and cumbersome machine. 

There is a bookshelf, also recognisable as having been carpentered by Edward Bach, he had an unique style. Old and new books on flower essences are askew in it and I walk over to browse with curiosity. Looking around, I see two water colours and wonder if Nora Weeks was the artist, one is of her and the other is of Victor Bullen*. 

the bookshelves at Mt. VernonLounge Mt. Vernon2nd living room at Mt Vernon

The familiar photo of Edward Bach is over the fire place. I see a poem painted on wood over the fireplace and ask myself who wrote this so apt poem: Deep Peace of the Running wave to you. Deep Peace of the Flowing Air to you. Deep Peace of the of the Quiet Earth to you. Deep Peace of the of the Shining Stars to you. Deep Peace of the Son of Peace to you.

I take time to flick through the visitors book, marvelling at the wide range of countries from where people have come from to visit the Bach Centre: Japan, Australia, Canada, South America, Scandanavia... for some reason I have never felt drawn to write anything in there although this is my third visit to the Centre. I wander out of this front room, it leads to the shop at the Centre which I then take a look at. A wide variety of products to do with Bach remedies are on sale here as are books in the previous room. Although I am drawn to the commerce surrounding the remedies, I decide to retreat and walk back into the garden, down the steep steps and then out into the village.

* Nora Weeks and Victor Bullen were Edward Bach's assistants.

Next: in the village where Dr Bach lived: Brightwell-cum-Sotwell

More about Mt. Vernon in my book: One Person's Journey, short Stories about Dr. Bach's flower remedies. Find out more now!

 

A feast of flowers - a visit to the Bach Centre

It is a glorious June day with clear blue skies and, as I walk up the rather steep steps, I see the little Victorian red brick house perched in front of me. It stands there simply, unobtrusively. Before going into the house, I wander around the garden and sense a strange peace - not that it is quiet though, the sparrows are twittering loudly, the insects buzzing, Nature is vibrant here. The peace is atmospheric, almost like a pleasant weight that can be felt - and it surprises me. I vaguely think while walking around that it might perhaps have something to do with the peace people have within themselves when they visit this garden.

up the steps at Mt. VernonBach Centre gardenBach Centre Mt.Vernon

Mt. Vernon was Dr Bach's home for the last two years of his life (1934 - 1936) and the garden is semi-wild. A surprising number of remedy plants grow here and indeed grew here in Dr Bach's days too. Those plants used for his system that do not grow in the garden can be found in the surroundings, apart from olive and vine. Wandering around, I stumble on masses of startlingly beautiful star of Bethlehem - bunches of pure whiteness. Agrimony nestles in one of the front beds and honeysuckle adorns the front porch, flowering lavishly. I am lucky to be visiting in summer, and delicate water violet is tentatively flowering alongside the more robust mimulus in the pond. Sitting down on the bench near the pond, I watch some dragonflies dancing over the water. Later, when I resume my tour around the garden after a short contemplative rest, I spot clematis which is winding itself around anything in reach (and itself) and is blooming profusely.

Star of Bethlehem at Mt. VernonHoneysuckle at Mt. Vernon Aspen at Mt. Vernon

Delicate wild roses are flowering nearby, pink and perfect and are being visited by nectar hungry bees. I see slender heads of the wild oat grass nodding in the breeze. I notice a large gorse bush and rock rose. Both these plants with their bright yellow flowers look strong and healthy and radiate vitality. I am enchanted by the stark blueness of cerato and chicory flowers, their heads swaying gently in the breeze. Impatiens has made a corner its own and probably has to be maintained as it grows so fast, it can suppress other plants. The trees in the garden that I discover include holly, cherry plum and elm. And I notice tiny oak and chestnut trees, probably only in their second year. The acorn and conker must have been buried by a squirrel in some past winter. 

The most impressing Bach plant though is the large, stately aspen at the back. Its leaves rustle quietly and continuously - even when the wind is still. I take one more look around, absorbing the atmosphere, the magic and the peace and then take a step indoors into Dr Bach's house.

Wild rose at Mt. Vernon Cerato at Mt. Vernon Impatiens at Mt. Vernon

Beautiful photos of all 38 Bach flowers are in my book, One Person's Journey, short Stories about Dr. Bach's flower remedies. Find out more now!



Share this blog

Submit to FacebookSubmit to Google PlusSubmit to TwitterSubmit to LinkedIn

Nicola's blog

Browse previous postings:

- The Elm bottle breaks

- Goodbye 2017

- When nearly everything changes

- Our social lives and genes

- Two refugees

- A nasty accident

- Friendliness

- Sleep

- Panic

- Someone mad with you?

- Breaking decades of silence (II)

- Who is not socialising and why?

- Breaking decades of silence (I)

- Who gets angry and why?

- Hey, Mr President!

- The saddest day

- Life is full of stories

- At Heathrow

- Building site Guardian Angel

- Letting go

- Specifically Chicory

- The Travellers - a fun piece!

- Emotional baggage

- A wild bird and the rescue remedy

- The garden at Mt.Vernon

- Inside Mt. Vernon

- Brightwell-cum-Sotwell

- Edward Bach's philosophy

Nicola Hanefeld 15My name is Nicola Hanefeld, I am English but I've lived in the Black Forest area in Freiburg, Germany, since 1981. I was a biology teacher before I left England. I have been a BFRP since 1997 and am also a trainer for Bach Centre approved courses. I have three wonderful children, all grown up now. I'm a member of Greenpeace and am also a teacher of the Alexander Technique.

Alongside the Bach flowers, photography is one of my passions. Another passion is writing and you will find many stories relating my journey with Edward Bach's amazing remedies in my book One Person's Journey.

ONE PERSONS JOURNEY

 

 

 

View "One Person's Journey" as an eBook

See reader's comments

It would be great to have you as a subscriber, sign up via hitting the button 'subscribe'!

 

 

Cookies make it easier for us to provide you with our services. With the usage of our services you permit us to use cookies.
More information Ok