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Thursday
May132010

Treating depression with flower essences

A large proportion of my clients suffer from depression so I have paid particular attention to the subject. A powerful strand of modern opinion is that nurture has a far greater influence on initiating depressive illness than genes. Robin Skynner & John Cleese in their book ‘Families and How to Survive Them’ say that “…people with depressions of different severity are stuck at different points in this period from six months onwards, when separation is the task to be coped with”, and, in his book ‘They F*** You Up’, Oliver James also identifies a number of sources for the onset of depressive illness set in the earliest days of a child’s upbringing. My own research through dowsing suggests that pre-birth influences can play a major role in depression: if the mother conveys to the baby in the womb that he is not wanted this can mark him as depressive even if he is well received at birth.

Among the many negative symptoms of depression are anger, anxiety, ideas of suicide, and, generally, the absolute loss of any joy in life. Usually a bout of depression needs a trigger, and this may be a loss, including some impediment to work or the creative life.  Examining this most negative of illnesses from the most positive point of view suggests that there may be an upside. A depressive may exhibit care, concern and responsibility beyond her years (more women than men experience depression). Also she may see life rather more clearly and realistically than the rest of us. And although she may come from the poorest part of the community she may be more sensitive and intelligent than average. Antidotes include sporting activity and being in nature, and, perhaps above all, creativity: it seems that the depressive is always being pushed to the limits of her creative potential.

In treatment I have learned a great deal by examining the types of essences that I select for my depressed clients. Whether anti-depressant medication is being taken or not, I usually administer a very mild first remedy to establish tolerance in someone who may be unusually sensitive – I frequently use Ellie Web’s gentle Harebell essences from Scotland. The main job of the early remedies (depression isn’t dealt with in a day) is to build up energy which is usually low. At the same time we are also working on the restoration of trust, which is measurable by dowsing and can be very low indeed. Once energy and trust have increased significantly, and moved more into alignment, one can select transformational remedies - which can sometimes have treatment effects – but stabilize the client at her new, higher level of functioning. Then remedies which discover, accentuate and support the client’s creativity are frequently the next to be selected: once the client is fully launched into creative activity she can attain an ongoing strength that keeps depression at bay or enables her to cope with it very much more effectively when it next rears its head.