Letting Your Dreams Blossom

Posted on in On Our Radar by Stephanie Gailing

Flower Essences for
Enhancing Dreamwork


Summertime is a season of blooming, and flowers, whether through their sensual or healing properties, can aid in the blooming of our personal well-being. One of my favorite ways to connect with the floral realm is by using flower essences. While these natural elixirs can address numerous facets of our well-being, I am especially enchanted by the role that they can play in a dreamwork practice. They address this realm through reducing stress to bolster greater rest, helping us forge a deeper connection to the images that the psyche brings forth in sleep, and enhancing our ability to remember our dreams.

What Are Flower Essences?

Flower essences are natural elixirs made by placing the flowering part of a plant in water, and exposing it to the rays of the sun; this process allows the energetic signature of the flower to be released and infused into the water. Unlike essential oils, flower essences don’t have a fragrance, nor do they primarily work on a physiological level; rather, similar to homeopathics, they are thought to work vibrationally on our subtle energy bodies, aiding in the restoration of psycho-emotional wellbeing.

The 20th-century physician Edward Bach is credited with introducing flower essences into our modern-day pharmacopeia. Yet, their traditional use dates back much earlier; for thousands of years, the healing essence of flowerinfused water has been recognized and used by numerous cultures, including those in ancient Egyptian and traditional Asian societies, as well as by Australian Aborigines.

While the stress-relieving Rescue Remedy blend may be the most well known, there are hundreds, if not thousands, of essences made from individual flowers; each flower is thought to address different constitutional temperaments, characteristics, and qualities, helping to bring our emotional and mental states back into balance, and thereby alleviating personal triggers of stress. While you can find flower essences in natural food stores and holistic pharmacies, you can also make your own, with resources on the Internet providing detailed instructions on how to do so.

How Can Flower Essences Play a Role in Dreamwork?

I generally look at the role of flower essences in dreamwork in two ways: First, flower essences quiet the conscious mind to inspire rest and to help us sleep; and second, flower essences can address different facets of connecting to, and remembering our dreams.

Flower Essences for Sleep
There is no single flower essence that is a “help you sleep” remedy, since the mental trigger that may cause agitation for one person, and which keeps them awake, may be different than it is for another. Three examples of calming essences include White Chestnut, Red Chestnut, and Aspen.

White Chestnut: If excessive mental chatter keeps you from readily falling asleep, consider White Chestnut. It’s helpful for times when you just can’t seem to get off the mental merry-go-round, those times when you keep on replaying events, conversations, and the like in your mind, over and over again.

Red Chestnut: Whereas White Chestnut is indicated for repetitive thoughts concerning ourselves, Red Chestnut is for times when concern and anxiety about someone else keeps you tossing and turning. For example, if you can’t get to sleep because you are worried about the whereabouts of your teenage son or the health challenges facing an aging parent, consider Red Chestnut.

Aspen: If a general sense of anxiousness, for which you’re not able to pinpoint a specific cause, has you counting sheep, consider Aspen flower essence. Since it addresses fear of the unknown, Aspen may also be a good remedy if you find yourself resistant to sleeping because you’re concerned that hidden fears may manifest themselves as nightmares.

Flower Essences for Dreaming
When working with our dreams, sometimes we may find that there are certain obstacles keeping us from connecting deeply with them or even remembering them. Within this spectrum, there are a host of different flower essences that can be beneficial, including Star Tulip, Mugwort, and Cosmos.

Mugwort: One of the plants most known for its association with dreamwork, Mugwort flower essence helps to inspire the psyche’s receptive capacity for awareness during dreaming. Additionally, it helps to bridge awareness between dreams and waking life, and therefore inspires a greater flow of remembering them.

Star Tulip: A wonderful flower essence to augment inner listening, Star Tulip can help refine our attunement to the subtle messages that come from our psyches, such as in our dreams. It inspires a sense of greater quietude, allowing for enhanced awareness of inner guidance.

Cosmos: There are times when we can see our dreams upon waking, but it’s hard to access them in a way that allows us to translate them into words. Cosmos flower essence helps to streamline the connection between the mind and the throat chakra, supporting the ability to give voice to, and document, our dreams.

How To Use Flower Essences

The most common way to use flower essences is to take them by mouth, either directly from the bottle, or by adding them to a glass of water. Generally, the dosage is four drops, four times a day, using them until you feel that their healing is complete.

Applying flower essences topically is another way to use them. They can be applied directly to the skin, either on the pulse points, specific acupressure points, or added to a bath. One convenient way of using them to is to add the flower essences to a mister bottle filled with water. You can then spritz yourself and your environment several times a day. The topical approach is suited well for children and/or those that are sensitive to alcohol (as many currently available flower essences contain brandy as a preservative).

Author of Planetary Apothecary, astrologer and wellness consultant Stephanie Gailing, MS, weaves together stellar insights, flower essence therapy, dreamwork, and compassion-based coaching in her counseling, teaching, and writing. StephanieGailing.com

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