By Loey Colebeck
When something impacts us emotionally and causes trauma, we usually feel it first in our Heart, our spirit center and the organizer of grand scheme of our Self. The other two Organs most immediately affected are the Liver and Spleen.
Lately I have been thinking a lot about the Liver and the Spleen, according to Chinese Medicine. I’ve been observing how trauma affects the basic functioning of these Organs, including digestion and circulation of Blood, fluids, thoughts and ideas, and how to use flower essences to remedy the repercussions of trauma in these Organs.
Trauma or injury can be looked at as a block in the flow of Energy, of life force. It is like crystalized Energy. What causes injury in one person might not do so in another. Like scar tissue, trauma prevents the free flow of life force, creating disorganization and chaos in the body, mind, family, social system or natural system.
Its origin may be personal experience, or may be within a family or social system. This blocked Energy seeks its expression, often through the system’s most sensative members as well as through future generations. So one thing we can do to heal community is to heal ourselves. Also, injury does not have a structure of its own; it structures itself differently through each individual body and mind.
Back to the Organs…the Liver is in charge of expression and of keeping things flowing smoothly, as well as other functions. The Spleen is in charge of the assimilation of nutrients and experiences, allowing us to nourish ourselves and to integrate the world into who we are.
Trauma can complicate the functioning both Organs, and the results may be seen in lack of focus, frustration, poor digestion, insomnia, inflamation, exhaustion, anger, introversion, infections, depression, skin impurities, obsessive tendencies or thoughts, stiff muscles, heaviness and mucosities, to name a few.
Our basic and broad-range flower essence for trauma is Star of Bethlehem. It helps re-wire the system and bring trauma to the surface, and is good to use over time. Other specific trauma-related essences, to name a few, are: Mariposa Lily, Bleeding Heart, Rock Rose, Baby Blue Eyes, Boab, Echinacea and Arnica.
Some of the flower remedies that can be used to treat the effects that trauma has on the Spleen are: Nasturtium, White Chestnut, Chestnut Bud, Wild Oat, Hornbeam, Honeysuckle. They can help to unblock the mind from replaying events, help assimilate the experiences and thus also aid in digestion, Energy and focus. Gentian, Red Chestnut, Crowea and the Mimulus family can also be useful by providing Faith, which is a virtue of the Spleen, thus helping improve energy levels.
The Liver provides us with impulse and with Goodness. Like the tender strength of new Spring shoots, it needs to expand and express outward. Unexpressed trauma impacts the Liver, stopping up the free flow of Energy and complicating the Liver’s capacity to provide clear vision, self-expression and life direction. Some of the flower essences that can help restore the Liver’s balanced functioning are: Hornbeam, Crab Apple, Willow, Cherry Plum, Clematis, Queen Anne’s Lace, Holly, Wild Oat, and others.
So, how do we know which remedies to use?
One of my teachers, when asked this question during his talks, would respond over and over, “look at the individual”. It is essential to the healing process not only to personalize the formula, but also to accompany its evolution. This is done best within the context of a therapeutic relationship, with a practitioner who can observe the process from the outside without judgement, can sustain a safe place in which we can express, and can provide a compassionate mirror to the blind spots in our evolution and healing.