In her interview with Goop, a health-centric lifestyle and beauty website curated by Gwyneth Paltrow, Sara Crow LAc shares distilled wisdom from nearly 20 years of clinical practice on how flower essences work to heal your mind, body, and emotions. Here is an excerpt from their in-depth conversation on this unique healing modality.
“Goop: What’s so powerful about flower essences as a healing modality?
Sara Crow: Many traditional cultures understood that the mind and body are inseparable and that the health of one is intimately linked to the health of the other. Psychoneuroimmunology (PNI) is a branch of modern medicine that studies how the mind and the body communicate. It considers how our thoughts and emotions influence our physiology. It is now well documented that “negative” or “depleting” psychological states, such as grief, fear, anger, and loneliness, take a toll on our health. They have been shown to be pro-inflammatory, disruptive to immune function, and even capable of altering genetic expression.
As a uniquely targeted plant preparation, a flower essence activates the innate healing power of the mind. Its highly evolved botanical intelligence locates and transforms subconscious blocks and limitations around an infinite number of psycho-spiritual themes. Since they are subtle energetic remedies, the essences tend to work mostly on the subtle and energetic aspects of ourselves, such as the acupuncture medians, emotional states, and mental constructs; Ayurveda calls this level the prana body.
Goop: What exactly is a flower essence and what’s the process of creating one?
Sara Crow: A flower essence is a bioenergetic preparation. Through the use of sunlight and water, we are able to capture the energy of a flower and use it for healing purposes: A freshly harvested flower is placed on the surface of water for a specific length of time and exposed to sunlight, resulting in the vibrational imprint of the flower in water. The flower essence is then used as an energetic remedy, with each flower having its own range of unique therapeutic benefits.
Preparing flower essences is both ancient and modern. There is a history of harvesting dew that is found in several cultures and traditions of alchemy (where dew was gathered from flowering plants to treat health imbalances); and modern-day flower essences adhere to many of the same principles and goals.
Flower essences are often confused with essential oils, though the two are quite different. Since flower essences are energetic, they do not contain a scent. (Flower essence tinctures, which include flower essences and floral essential oils, i.e. alcoholic extracts of flowers, do carry scents from their plants. The pure essences and tinctures are used in similar ways.) Other than their efficacy, one of the primary advantages of flower essences is their safety; they are completely safe and appropriate for people of all ages, including babies. Animals respond incredibly well to flower essences, too.
Goop: You are also an intuitive healer—can you talk a bit about how that dovetails with your work with flowers?
Sara Crow: As a licensed medical practitioner, acupuncturist, and herbalist, I believe it is paramount that each person is treated holistically. I find that combining right- and left-brain approaches is the most effective. For example, a significant part of my practice is working with people all over the world doing energy medicine, healings, and psychic readings. I find that for optimal healing to take place it is necessary to explore the contributing factors to health imbalances, including medical history, constitution, and symptoms, alongside examining any psychological and spiritual challenges. Treating the individual instead of the disease itself is the cornerstone of many holistic health care modalities. Therefore, when I guide someone through the healing process, I will tailor the healing protocol to the individual and choose flower essences based on the root issues presenting at any given time. Everyone gets a flower essence prescription, because flower essences are one of the best modalities for activating the innate healing power of the mind, supporting emotional equilibrium, and improving overall health.
Identifying the root issues that may be presenting in your life is a great starting place for choosing flower essences. Another way is to simply pick an area of your life that you are challenged by or would like to see change around. For example, it can be to feel more confident, less angry, more creative, less anxious, or more self-love…”
Check out the full article to learn how to select the best flower essences for your unique needs, and special recommendations and recipes for:
- Healing a broken heart
- Releasing perfectionism and self-judgment
- Opening the channels to creativity and fulfilment
- Dissolving anxiety and fear
- Creating a deeply relaxing afternoon ritual
This post is revised. The original version was published on January 25, 2017.