I love the "aha" look on people's faces when a moment happens while I'm teaching a class on aromatherapy. You know - when a feeling or idea opens in your mind and you now see something in a completely new way?
For me this often happens when I introduce the concept that essential oils are "multi dimensional healing tools".
Think about this - what other alternative / integrative therapy can impact the physical, emotional and energetic levels - simultaneously?
Let's look at this...
On the physical level the science behind aromatherapy looks at the individual chemical compounds of the plant the oil was extracted from. Each oil is a unique and powerful synergy of plant chemistry, and this chemistry is what defines the therapeutic (physical level) actions of that plant.
For instance, Lavender and Geranium are two oils that are high in a chemical family called Esters. Oils that are high in Esters are found to be anti-inflammatory, anti- spasmodic, and very healing to the skin. You can find many uses for Lavender and Geranium for the body for skin care, swelling, pain, and calming down inflamed tissues.
On the emotional level lavender and geranium are often referred to as calming, balancing and harmonizing to the nervous system. When we inhale the aroma molecules, they go directly to the limbic system of the brain, which is where we associate feelings and emotions with smell. The molecules we inhale are analyzed by the limbic system, and a hormonal response to the molecule is initiated bio chemically ( release of stress or soothing hormones).
While individual responses will vary - a simple way to categorize the emotional response to oils are that they either stimulate, balance, or calm our moods and emotions. So a balancing oil like geranium or lavender will in general - help balance, soothe our emotions by working together with our endocrine system and creating a bio chemical change to soothe or calm us.
On the energetic level it's more subtle, and many do not notice or even think about this level when using oils. But Integrative Healing Practitioners know that true healing begins in our energy fields and works it's way into the physical field.
We know that oils have an effect on our chakras, our meridian systems, and the layers of consciousness or fields around us. Essential oils have electro-magnetic frequencies. Oils like Geranium and Lavender tend to balance, soothe, and help to align our energetic bodies.
Whew! Are you still with me? Let's put this into practical wisdom!
Let's say you fall and a twist your ankle.You don't' need a emergency room but you are in pain and upset.
You, or a helpful kind person with you... might pull out some lavender oil and make a cold compress to apply to your painful ankle. The lavender will physically help your swelling and pain and trauma to the tissues.
But while this compress is helping you physically, the molecules are also reaching your nose, and going directly to your limbic system, which supports your nervous system to send soothing / happy hormones out to help you from the trauma of the injury. Relaxing and reducing stress is a major part of healing!
Now, energetically - when we receive a shock or trauma - our energy field gets scattered. What better to use then the calming frequencies of lavender in your energetic field?
Remember that lavender and geranium are anti- inflammatory on the physical level? Apply that action to "inflamed emotions - yep that works. Inflamed energy? Yep that works too! Calms things down on all levels!
So - do you see how essential oils are a multi dimensional healing tool now?
Did you just have an aha moment?? I hope so! So next time you pull out your oils, consider the "textbook use" for the physical level and apply it to your emotions, or you energy field and see how it can help you there as well.
Always remember too that the more you learn utilize the oils on all levels of healing, the more powerful you will find them.