The Bach Flower Remedies – Natural Remedy or Quackery?

Long before Dr Edward Bach discovered and developed his Bach Flower Remedies, Plato stated that:

“The cure of the part should not be attempted without treatment of the whole. No attempt should be made to cure the body without the soul, and, if the head and body are to be healthy, you must begin by curing the mind… For this is the great error of our day in the treatment of the human body, that physicians first separate the soul from the body.”

-Plato, The Republic

Science has long sought to separate the human soul from the human body. It denies the very existence of the soul and this stand can be seen strongly in the training of medical personnel in most of the world. Every medical student is trained to believe that a strictly scientific approach is the only valid approach and everything else is just quackery with practitioners of naturopathy, homeopathy, reflexology, (and other therapies more metaphysical than scientific) being condemned as witches, charlatans and snake-oil salesmen.

I can’t deny that there are those who take advantage of people to practice hocus pocus and trickery. However, this is equally true for both sides of the treatment debate. Consider the number of scientifically trained Western medical practitioners who are found guilty of malpractice and scams of every sort on a daily basis. Let’s be very clear about one thing – Science is big business. Just try to contradict a seriously held scientific belief and watch the money men swing into action.

Science is, in its own way, as much a religion as any other. It requires its devotees to make leaps of faith to cover gaps in empirical knowledge and to discount any proof that conflicts with ideology. Sounds like a definition of a religion to me.

Now many of our wars are fought with spin doctors, advertising agencies, the media and lawyers as the soldiers, in a battle for the minds and money of the average consumer. If they have your mind, they will also have your money. That’s why the advertising business is HUGE.

The scientific approach separates the symptoms from the patient, discarding what doesn’t fit with a purely scientific framework as having no validity.

(What you can’t see and can’t prove, doesn’t exist. Right?) Wrong!

Dr Edward Bach was a very highly qualified physician; Harley Street consultant and bacteriologist who believed that standard medical theory did not go far enough in the treatment of the individual. What was needed was an ‘whole-istic’ approach to treating each person and not just treating the symptoms as if they were ‘stand-alone’ components.

In 1930 he resigned from his lucrative medical practices to work full time on developing a range of plant and flower based remedies designed to restore harmony between soul, mind and body. He said:

“Health is our heritage, our right. It is the complete and full union between soul, mind and body; and this is not a difficult far-away ideal to attain, but one so easy and natural that many of us have overlooked it”.

-Dr Edward Bach

Dr Bach developed The Bach Flower Remedies in the 1930’s to support a person’s fight against ill health by paying attention and dealing with, melancholy, angst, suffering, fear, and other emotional factors that are the fundamental cause of ill-health, sickness and disease.

By 1936, Dr Edward Bach had discovered 39 remedies, 38 of which were for a definite emotional and mental state, with his 39th Remedy being a combination of five of the remedies designed for complex and stressful situations, which he called ‘Rescue Remedy”.

The Remedies were developed to stimulate our self-healing mechanism, causing it to swing into battle, fully engaged and fully armed to fight off sickness and disease.

You do not have to be sick to use the remedies. Everyone goes through times of trouble, stress and weariness when one allows negativity to creep in and overwhelm one. The Bach Flower Remedies are very successful at restoring the equilibrium before physical symptoms appear and are especially helpful for those who feel generally weary and under the weather without a precise medical diagnosis being made.

There are no scientific papers or clinical studies that I have been able to discover, that deal with the efficacy of The Bach Flower Remedies. What I can tell you about however, is the many thousands of anecdotal testimonies of people who have used or are currently, using the flower remedies. I can also offer personal statements.

I was a skeptic concerning natural and/or metaphysical approaches and practices. Even now I am wary of many esoteric practices. However, I put the Bach Flower Remedies to the test and after two weeks of using the remedy that was prescribed for me I noticed a vast improvement in my emotional response and general sense of well-being. I can do no more than report my personal experience. I now include the Bach Flower Remedies in my own personal medical cabinet along with the headache pills of the scientific community.

In summary, the tug of war between the ideology of the scientific approach which discounts all but the symptoms on one side, and on the other side, those who desire a more whole-listic approach to treating the individual as a more than just a collection of symptoms, is an ongoing discordant rumbling in the belly of humanity and which occasionally breaks out into skirmishes and wars.

My suggestion is: investigate The Bach Flower Remedies for yourself. Don’t allow yourself to be brainwashed either way but do your own research, talk to those with personal stories to tell and make up your own mind. And finally, try them.

Treat the whole person or treat the symptoms? You decide.

Natasha M. McKnight

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