– By Salvatore Battaglia
In my essential oil monographs of The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy, I have a subsection called Energetics, psyche and subtle uses.
The term ‘energetics’ is very broad and is often used in subtle therapies; however, in my book I have used the term ‘energetics’ to describe the relationship between the essential oils and the traditional healing principles of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). The term ‘subtle’ is used to describe the effect of essential oils on chakras and the subtle etheric body.
By the way, many of you have been asking about Volume II. This summer (in Australia – that is), I have been very busy writing! It is starting to look like there will be three volumes. Yes, some of you may think I have gone mad, but for reasons that will soon become obvious you will understand why Volume II will focus on the Psyche and Subtle and Volume III will focus on the Science and Therapeutics.
Very soon, I look forward to sharing with you some of the new content that will appear in Volume II and Volume III. All going to schedule, both should be ready before the end of 2020.
Which brings me back to the energetics of essential oils and some of my favourite books, the review of which you can find on my website – From the Library.
Before I even got into aromatherapy, I was practicing massage, herbal medicine, and flower essences and acupuncture. Acupuncture came naturally to me. I resonated with the concept of Qi circulating through the meridians and understanding pathologies in terms of damp, heat, cold or wind. More importantly, I got such wonderful results with my clients in clinic. I found that it was very easy for my patients to understand their conditions in terms of TCM principles.
When I first discovered aromatherapy, I naturally thought of essential oil properties in terms of the TCM concepts. It made much more sense to think of sweet fennel and many other seed oils as a warming and drying remedy that is useful in eliminating damp conditions, which are associated with digestive ailments, respiratory conditions with excess phlegm and eliminating toxins. Many flower oils such as lavender, neroli and German chamomile are considered fantastic essential oils for clearing heat and calming the Shen. The Shen is akin to our spirit and when it is disturbed, we may experience mental and emotional restlessness, anxiety, worry or depression.
Within a TCM framework, the role of chemistry becomes superfluous, because TCM transcends the pharmacological model. We are more interested in understanding the energetic interaction of the essential oil and the Qi in the body, which meridian it influences, and which of the Five Elements is not in harmony and how we can use essential oils to re-establish harmony.
Therefore, it is not surprising that two of my favourite books are Aromatherapy for Healing the Spirit by Gabriel Mojay and Aromatica: A Clinical Guide to Essential Oil Therapeutics by Peter Holmes.
Both Mojay and Holmes eloquently weave together the concepts of TCM and aromatherapy. If you wish to have a more holistic understanding of the therapeutic activity of essential oils, both these books are a must read.
I will also be conducting an Advanced Aromatherapy and Five Elements Masterclasses in Melbourne on the 1 June 2019 and in Osaka on the 29 June 2019. I do hope that those of you in Australia and Japan will be able to attend.