These two conditions tend to go together. As a strong sense of pressure, stress/tension is "the younger brother of hostility and afflicts many," notes Kaminski. "Such persons are not as overtly hostile or aggressive, but they still are predominantly yang in their soul orientation. They need to develop more inner space, a quality of soul spaciousness. Such persons find it hard to be at rest; they always need to be doing something; they feel hurried and pressured; and they set up situations in their life in which they will be hurried and pressured."
Kaminski notes that in some respects, this condition is "a strong imprint or overlay from Western culture itself and may not be part of a person's true temperament. Many people are profoundly influenced by the overall speeded-up quality of the urban environment in which everything rushes by intensely; people end up unconsciously copying this energy pattern in their own life. Such persons could be called adrenaline junkies, because they thrive on tension, pressure, deadlines, and performance expectations, all of which tend to over-stimulate the adrenal glands. The faster something is, the more impatient they are to make it go even faster. They will switch TV channels constantly or upgrade their computer every year."
Two essences specifically deal with the overall quality of pressure, tension, and stress imparted by Western culture to all of us:
Yarrow Special Formula: This formula
focuses on enhancing the integrity of our energy body, the
flow of physical and subtle energies through our physical body
and aura. It also helps undo the toxic influence of noxious
environmental energies such as radiation, pollution, geopathic
stress (harmful energies from the Earth itselfsee chapter
12 for more details), and even computer stress. This remedy
combines yarrow and sea salt to strengthen the human energy
field with pure formative forces from the plant and mineral
kingdoms so that we can withstand and resist the tension/pressure
and noxious influences from the environment.
Arnica Yarrow Echinacea
Five Flower Formula: This is an all-purpose first-aid remedy (also known as Rescue Remedy) combining five flower essences (Cherry Plum, Clematis, Impatiens, Rock Rose, and Star of Bethlehem). It is especially useful in cases of sudden, acute shock or trauma. "It is also a good overall balancer for tension, stress, emergencies, life in the fast lane, some cases of insomnia, subliminal levels of panic, and general dis-ease," comments Kaminski. It instills calmness and stability in the face of physical or emotional emergencies, high stress, sudden panic, disorientation, or loss of consciousness. It helps the soul stay connected with the body, and in cases of nonemergency, it can be used in the early stages of inner work as a way of stabilizing the self so that it can calmly contact the soul within.
Other essences helpful for
Impatiens: As already mentioned, Impatiens
can alleviate the sense of impatience, irritation, urgency,
and tension, and allow instead a sense of patient acceptance
of the flow of events and the movement of time.
Yarrow: People who experience extreme vulnerability to others and to their environment, who are easily depleted energetically, or who too easily absorb negative influences and psychic toxicity from around them will benefit from Yarrow. This flower essence instills a sense of inner radiance and auric strength, a sensitivity that is not vulnerable to constant permeation by outside influences. Persons who have allergies, environmental sensitivities, and psychosomatic diseases will benefit from Yarrow.
Scleranthus: Scleranthus deals with hesitation, confusion, indecision, and conditions of unresolved duality in the quest for inner wholeness. People for whom this remedy is indicated tend to vacillate when they need to make decisions; this chronic uncertainty can get translated into bodily symptoms, especially ones that continually shift, come and go, increase and decrease in intensity. Scleranthus can help produce inner resolve and decisiveness.
Indian Pink: The person requiring this flower essence tends to have their psychic forces easily shattered by overactivity and find it hard to remain centered and grounded during this intense activity. Indian Pink people tend to try to do too many things at once, and they spin out of control and out of focus. They can be emotionally volatile and appear haggard or depleted. Indian Pink helps such a person stay centered and focused even during times of stress.
Star Tulip: The Star Tulip person tends to feel hardened, cut off, unable to feel attuned to things or any sense of quiet inner presence as is needed to pray or meditate. The remedy helps one listen within, to become aware of the subtle influences perpetually at work within and around them; it enhances one's ability to pray, dream, meditate, or feel connected to the spiritual worlds.
This fourth basic state of emotional toxicity includes loss of confidence and low self-esteem in the context of low-grade chronic fear and anxiety. "This is the lesser sister of depression," says Kaminski. "It works predominantly in a yin way in the soul. These are persons who under-perform, who do not push or pressure themselves with respect to externals though they may carry a huge amount of pressure or anxiety that churns them up from within. Such persons hold in too much psychic force especially in the abdomen or solar plexus area of the body. They tend to cave in, give way to fear and limiting notions of self. They need courage and strength, more yang force."
These are the flower remedies
Mimulus: This essence is helpful for
easing the effects of known, everyday fears, for people who
are hypersensitive to small ordinary fears. The solar plexus
churns with agitation and unease at all these unrelieved fears.
Mimulus restores courage to the soul to face these fears and
life challenges with confidence and inner light, and it helps
highlight the deeper, more basic fear underlying the multitude
of surface panics: "the fear of the physical body, or
of physical life itself," sometimes traceable to the moment
of birth, says Kaminski.
Scarlet Monkeyflower: The person needing
this flower essence tends to fear intense feelings and represses
all strong emotions, leaving them unable to resolve issues
of anger and powerlessness. The person is afraid of their shadow-self
emotions, the ones they believe originate from the unconscious.
Scarlet Monkeyflower helps instill emotional honesty and helps
integrate the shadow feelings.
Sticky Monkeyflower: This one deals
with repressed sexual feelings or acting out in inappropriate
sexual behavior. It is also concerned with a person's inability
to experience human warmth during sexual relations; in a sense,
it is about a deep fear of sex and intimacy, says Kaminski,
and even more, it is about a fear of exposure of one's essential
self during moments of physical intimacy. Sticky Monkeyflower
thereby helps a person integrate sexual urges with human warmth
Buttercup: Buttercup is indicated when
one feels low self-worth and high self-doubt, and when one
is unable to acknowledge one's own inner light and uniqueness
especially when measured against conventional external standards.
Buttercup, in keeping with its bright, almost glistening yellowness,
helps one radiate an inner light so as to become free of the
need for outer recognition. Buttercup helps you honor your
own value from within and bring this quality out into the world.
Sunflower: The Sunflower person has
a distorted sense of self, either tending to self-inflation
or self-diminishment, to arrogance or low self-esteem. There
is often an imbalance in their relationship to the masculine
(or Father archetype), even if the person is a male. Sunflower
evokes a balanced sense of ego or self-identity, neither too
much nor too little, marked by light, warmth, and compassion.
Penstemon: Here one feels sorry for
oneself and self-pity is the order of the day. One is also
unable to bear the difficulties of one's circumstances (such
as a handicap or disability from birth or an accident) and
succumbs to a sense of persecution. Hence, Penstemon instills
a feeling of inner fortitude, an ability to persevere despite
the heavy challenges facing one.
Mountain Pride: The Mountain Pride person often vacillates and even withdraws in the face of a hard challenge, lacking assertiveness and the inner nerve to stand up for one's convictions. This is for people who confuse peace with passivity. Mountain Pride evokes a sense of "forthright masculine energy, a warrior-like spirituality that confronts and transforms," explains Kaminski.
California Wild Rose: See the Depression
category for a description of this essence. (Part
Blackberry: Here a person has a hard
time translating goals and ideals into actual action in the
world. It is as if the will cannot link itself with the world;
there is a significant gap between aims and achievements. Appropriately,
the person's metabolism is sluggish, mirroring the sluggishness
of the will. Blackberry helps one develop a sense of "exuberant
manifestation" in which one can clearly, directly channel
one's will forces into concrete action.
As mentioned earlier, these categories and their subdivisions are not cast in stone. "As the emphasis here is emotional toxicity, I refer to the dysfunctional qualities we often see when these four temperaments are out of balance," comments Kaminski. "There is usually one we gravitate towards more than others, but certainly these are not mutually exclusive categories. In fact, we can switch into different basic responses as we go through different life cycles. Even the seasons can affect our responses." For example, there is a normal disposition to "depression" in the winter months when there is the least amount of sunlight.
Writers such as James Hillman, in The Soul's Code, wisely counsel us to cultivate this depression in the winter, to take time to go into our depths. If we did, he argues, we would see more depth in our culture, more ability to deal with grief and loss, and less need to medicate. "This is exactly what flower essence therapy is intended to achieve," notes Kaminski. "Not to mask outer symptoms, but to help the soul find the right balance with regard to these basic soul dispositions."
The toxicity comes when these soul aspects aren't being attended to in a conscious way, she explains. "I use the analogy of a river that flows harmoniously without being impeded, dammed, or otherwise regulated from without. This river (our emotional life) is able to cleanse itself of toxic waste effectively, even to regenerate itself from rather extreme states of toxicity if given the opportunity to come back into dynamic balance."
As Patricia Kaminski makes clear, flower essences can highlight, clarify, and help resolve emotional knots in the psyche. It can bring light into the dark regions of our emotional life and help us see where we have been tied up, repressed, or otherwise blocked by stuck or buried emotions. Flower essences, especially St. John's Wort, discussed above, can also make us aware of psychic blockages or even parasitic elements in our overall energy field. Sometimes these blockages or the presence of foreign energies in our aura can compromise us to a degree beyond which flower essence therapy can be therapeutic. That is because such blockages or presences operate beyond our emotional sphere, in the sphere of energy and psychic or spiritual influences, and require a different approach. This is the subject of the next chapter.
End of Part 5
"Guidelines for Emotional Detoxification"
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