In Depth Case Studies

In-Depth Case Studies


The Flower Essence Society is dedicated to training practitioners in case-taking skills, and the principles of in-depth flower essence therapy. Although flower essences can have immediate, short-term effects which provide relief of symptoms, the most profound results come about through long-term therapy in which clear transformation or metamorphosis of the soul can be noted. As Dr. Bach wrote in his classic treatise Heal Thyself, our suffering is an invitation to change, an opportunity to perfect our soul evolution so that we may more fully express our life purpose. Flower essences are often interpreted as palliatives intended to relieve physical discomfort, or address fleeting, surface emotions. While they can be used for emergency treatment, their true therapeutic value is achieved through well-considered health care programs that involve a component of inner work and self-awareness.

On the basis of four decades of case collection and practitioner clinical reports to the Flower Essence Society, we have observed that flower essence therapy generally involves four basic levels of outcome. This healing phenomena is referred to as the Four R's of Flower Essence Response, as outlined in the original research by Patricia Kaminski. Please note that these stages do not automatically occur in every single case of flower essence use. Also, while they usually occur in the chronological order listed below, more than one stage can operate simultaneously, or in a slightly altered sequence of development unique to the individual case.

The span of time for all of these stages of development will vary according to the individual case – ranging from a month to a year or more. A single blend of flower essences, or even one flower remedy can be used. As well, the blend of essences may be adjusted and reformulated with any number of new flower essences in order to facilitate the ongoing progressive development of the four levels of response in flower essence therapy.

The Four R's of Flower Essence Response:An Overview

Stage One:
Release, Relaxation or Rejuvenation

This is the most immediate and perceptible response to flower essences. It is often felt as a physical release or shift. In this first phase of healing, the energy systems within the physical-soul bodies have been stimulated and are working toward a new center of balance. A general sense of calm, relaxation, or alertness is usually experienced, although a spectrum of other physiological responses can occur, such as changes in breathing, sleeping and eating. While most responses promote a sense of well-being, some may feel unpleasant or unexpected, such as the release of tears if being treated for grief, or pronounced sleepiness for some conditions of stress and overwhelm. These initial physiological responses gradually subside as the stimuli from the flower essences are integrated and balanced with the mind-body complex.
Stage One Summary
Most immediate effect of flower essences. A perceptible response to flower essences often felt as a physical release or shift.


  • breathing
  • sleeping
  • eating
  • relaxation response or energy response depending on individual


  • release of pent-up emotion
  • tears
  • smiles
  • general sense of well-being
  • subtle feeling of a shift
  • creates new center of balance or psychic reference point
  • initial responses subside as these changes are registered and integrated

Stage Two:
Realization and Recognition and Initial Reaction

In this stage the archetypal qualities of the flower essences work more deeply into the soul, producing new cognitive awareness about feelings and behavior. A “witness consciousness” is developed which allows insight into the hidden, or “shadow” aspects of the personality that have been contributing to dysfunctional patterns. By recognizing these parts of ourselves, we change not only physiologically, but psychologically. As in Stage One, these initial psychological insights can at times be uncomfortable, but as we come to know ourselves more honestly and gain control over previously hidden aspects of our personality, we achieve greater emotional and mental clarity, inner resilience and well-being.

Stage Two Summary

  • Flower essences are now working into a wider strata of the body-soul complex.
  •  These changes are usually registered in the mental field and the initial layers of the emotional being.

Positive Healing Results

  • Enhanced Cognitive Insight into One’s Behavior and Feelings –
    “I’ve not been telling the truth to my co-workers and it doesn’t feel right...”
    “I didn’t know I was tightening my stomach every time I am around my  mother...”
  • Development of Witness Consciousness – Self seeing the Self
  • Greater Mental Clarity
  • Sense of Harmony and Cohesion – more of the True Self is present
  • More conscious dialogue Between Mind and Body aspects of Self

Possible Reactions

  • Stirring of Identity Crisis
  • Feeling of Tug of War with Opposing Aspects of Self
  • Self-Identity feels more complex and layered
  • More Light but Also More Shadow
  • Emerging Feelings of Disunity or Fragmentation as more aspects of Self appear in one’s field of consciousness
  • Uncomfortable feeling of a Subversive Self: “Me and My Shadow”

Stage Three:
Resistance, Regression and Reconciliation

The first two stages deal mostly with present time, and can be sufficient healing for body-soul issues which are not deeply patterned. However, in most healing work we can trace far more profound soul influences that operate at subterranean depths of consciousness, affecting the over-all health, belief systems, attitudes and creative potential of each individual. These more significant soul wounds usually involve soul history, such as early childhood experiences at times of great vulnerability; religious, political or other cultural conditioning; traumatic stress which was not fully resolved at the time of occurrence; or karmic patterns inscribed into the soul destiny at birth. Skillful application of flower essences in Stage Three facilitates deep psychological work, combined with complementary modalities like counseling, dream and journal work, meditation and visualization, art therapy and other self-awareness techniques. This stage may appear retrogressive when old patterns leap up to oppose forthright efforts of change. The alchemical stage is set for an "awareness crisis" which releases both physical and psychological residue from the past. By reconciling the buried aspects of self-identity and integrating them with conscious understanding, the soul achieves in-depth healing and transformation.

Stage Three Summary

  • The Third Stage is the most challenging stage, and yet the most necessary for deep healing.
  • In the soul’s spiralic movement it may appear that we are moving backwards.
  • What we are really doing is re-visiting a past part of our consciousness.
  • We are bringing new insight and energy to heal these patterns.
  • The past is not dead; it is alive with potential.

It affects our present awareness and future potential.

Hallmark of Stage Three: Healing Crisis
  • Physical symptoms which appeared to have been healing suddenly get worse.
  • Old habits or addictions return with powerful force.
  • Grief, depression and other emotional wounds appear to bleed again.
  • Early childhood trauma returns in memories, or dreams.
  • Other post-traumatic trauma becomes more vivid – as though re-experiencing it full force.
  • Feelings of discouragement: this is not working, I am not getting better.

Healing of Stage Three: Practitioner Skills and Client Engagement

  • Practitioner Presence
  • Enhanced Counseling: the art of asking questions
  • Journaling
  • Guided Imagery
  • Affirmations
  • Dream Work
  • Art Therapy


  • Continue to Develop Witness Identity in the Soul
  • Reconcile new and old parts of Self
  • Create Soul Dialogue with “Opposite” or “Opposing” Aspects of Self
  • Create Greater Awareness and Flexibility in the Soul
  • Create the Still Point that leads to Soul Turning


Stages One and Two: Orienting ourselves in present time: literally becoming present through soul consciousness

Stage Three: Recognizing our past and how it creates the present

Stage Four: Taking Hold of our Future: Re-creating and Re-visioning Soul Possibility

Stage Four:
Renewal, Re-Constellation & Re-Visioning of the Self

While the first two stages operate primarily in present time, and the third stage reaches into the deep past of the human soul, the fourth stage in flower essence therapy points to its future destiny. In Stage Four we are able to identify new possibilities concerning life purpose and the ability to manifest that purpose. One of the profound truths of genuine flower essence therapy is that when soul wounding is addressed in a transformational manner, those very areas of previous pain and limitation become nodal points for new potential and soul evolution. For instance, an individual who may have been the victim of social discrimination and suffers from low self-esteem, anger and poor physical vitality, can use flower essence therapy to transform these limiting conditions into positive qualities of inner-strength, self-worth and compassionate consideration for the suffering of others. These soul virtues will in turn lead to new possibilities in the destiny and creative potential of such a person.

Stage Four Summary

Core Themes:

  • The soul wound becomes a luminous portal for new soul experience and expansion of consciousness
  • Engagement of the Wounded Healer Archetype: Parts of the soul that had been in pain or dysfunction now hold virtue and strength
  • Personal suffering or misfortune now leads to greater compassion and capacity for understanding the pain of others  

Examples of Growth and Transformation in Stage Four:

  • May find a new career
  • A new expression in current job or tasks
  • The healing of one’s addiction or dysfunction imparts skills and sensitivity for helping others with similar suffering
  • New friends or social network
  • New relationship to family based on love and strength rather than victimhood or anger
  • Feeling of inner soul strength – life is not necessarily easier but we can handle more
  • Self and World and Self and Other feel more dynamically connected

Stage Four healing does not mean one lives “happily ever after.” The gift of Stage Four healing, is that one proceeds with greater strength and consciousness to the next steps of soul evolution.

By Patricia Kaminski © Flower Essence Society. All rights reserved.

Case studies by Dr. Ernesto Bolio, medical doctor from Mexico City

The Light in Maria

Using Flower Essences to Address a Rare Nervous Disorder


Journey out of Depression

Transformational Stages in Flower Essence Therapy


Additional reports from practitioners can be found here.


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