The Willow Way Flower essences all come from the Colorado Rocky Mountain alpine country. The energy of these flowers is potent! The life force of an entire year is expressed in these exquisite blossoms, with their amazing morphology and color displaying for only a few weeks. All of these essences are flowers that I have developed relationship with over decades. The process I use to make the essences is an energy medicine, which is similar to homeopathy. The blossoms are not harmed or destroyed, yet the energy frequency of the flower is preserved in an alcohol matrix. These essences are like carrying a bit of the magic of the alpine in your pocket. Whenever you could use a little of that magic, take one to three drops under your tongue. Do not expect them to smell like the flowers. These are not essential oils, they are flower energy preserved in alcohol. They will smell and taste like a drop of alcohol. For these essences, I use 100% agave tequilla.
My favorite way of working with these essences is to display them at my bedside in a circle. Every morning upon arising and before sleep, I muscle-test with applied kinesiology to select the essence that will serve as the best personal ally for that day–or to enhance my dream-state through the night. That way, I have ample opportunity to experience the unique effects of each flower and strengthen my bond with them as well. The eleven essences that are offered here are very good friends indeed.
For the method I use to make the essences, read the post on “Mertensia”.
The color of passionate heart is borne by the leaves which stretch heaven-ward uncompromisingly. In the Paintbrush flower, the wonderful colors are actually carried by the leaves.
Flowers are the genitals of a plant. They carry the reproductive organs. In the Paintbrush, the actual flowers are very inconspicuous. This could be considered a statement of “ordinary magic”—using their more ordinary parts for such an exquisite display of color.
Paintbrush in the Rockies express in many different colors, including crimson, burgundy, pink, many shades of peach to apricot to bright orange, yellow. All tones of red ranging through orange to yellow. These are colors of the First, Second and Third Chakra—the chakras that help us ground, propagate and hold power on the physical plane, respectively. The Paintbrush is channeling heavenly energy through to express in earthiness. The Rosey Paintbrush, in particular, support the expression of compassionate heart and the sound of “Ah!” — the sound vibration of the Heart Chakra comes forth easily!
Key phrase: Passionate compassionate heart.
Little Purple Elephant flower
Clustered in colonies by Mother Water, they often find home in a bog or seep. The delicate blossoms spiral up the central stalk, making Purple Elephant flowers a village on a stem.
The extraordinary thing about Little Purple Elephant flower is just how much the blossoms resemble the head of an elephant. The big ears that lop over, the prominent forehead, sized for housing a large frontal lobe, and the winding extended trunk. Thus, their name.
Their morphology speaks of many of the qualities of their giant Pachyderm “cousins”. In a herd of wild elephants in Kenya, I have seen the trunks are in the lead, seeking, outreaching for forage. The trunk is also the trumpet and the shower—the many faceted link to the surrounding world. The trunks of the Little Purple Elephants express their out- reach in an exotic swirl.
In the African elephants, every member of the herd is aligned in step and heartbeat with the Matriarch of the herd and with Madre Tierra. This is the energy the Little Purple Elephants carry also. An energy field of caring for community surrounds them.
Key phrase: caring for community.
White Bog Orchid
At first glance, this alpine beauty looks like a small white stalk. Further inspection reveals many, up to 25 or so, exquisite tiny orchids spiralling upward on a succulent stem the color of Aspen leaves when they first emerge in the Spring. The leaves are slender, ovate and alternate from the ground up.
One must have a magnifier lens to do the blossom justice. It has a delicate double hood which bends forward in a humble bow. Below that, petals reach laterally like open arms, and a very long tongue extends Earthward. The succulence of the petals shine sunlight straight through them, giving a crystalline sheen. The overall effect of the blossom is erotic purity. When the stamens and pistils mature, emerging from the throat of the flower, they take on the form of a little face, which greets you with a Mona Lisa smile.
Like the Purple Elephant, the flowers clustered on the stem as well as their habit of growing in colonies speaks of community.
Key phrase: Sensual Purity exalted in Community.
Story of Mertensia (also known as Chiming Bells) and how the Willow Way Flower Essences are made:
It was an overcast day– gray, but soft. The air was full of water, just to the dripping point. The flowers were brilliant in this light. We were on an excursion from camp with no real destination. We were curious about the valley to the South of our camp. We could see it from camp, and a little more of it from the pass, but most of it was hidden from our view—thus, we were referring to it as Hidden Valley. We were curious about it, and we wanted to take the llamas for a walk without asking them to carry any cargo.
Stele and Naomi climbed on above Becky and I. They were eager to see what view the next cirque offered, and the next. We chose to stay and commune with the plants.
The plants were so beautiful. They were beaming. This expressed as beauty but also carried the distinct sensation of love. We were in love with the plants, and they were shining their love out to the world. We had been looking for the right moment to do a plant journey, and it was clear that the timing was perfect.
We were looking for the plant that seemed to call out with an invitation to share with us. One that was particularly brilliant.
We had just passed a big wet bog full of dozens of varieties of flowers. I was feeling very drawn to the Purple Elephant Head flowers. There were some that were glimmering—simply glistening with beauty. Their beauty was astonishing. I felt penetrated by it.
Stele was urging us to come up to the next level. There’s Elephants up here, he said. We went, but they weren’t the same. They weren’t screaming in ecstasy to us, like the ones below.
We explained that we were going to stop and do a Plant Journey.
At that point, we decided that both Becky and I would choose a plant, we would then journey together to both plants.
At that level there was some beautiful Mertensia, locally named Chiming Bells. They were in their glory—just stunning. They grow in big colonies, often along rock slides with cascading water. They put down their roots right into the rock and icy water. There is barely any soil—they help make the soil with their seasons of death and rebirth gradually building humus.
Becky decided this would be her choice. We carefully made our way to the center of the Mertensia colony, and found a place to sit on some sharp rocks that were big enough to perch on. It felt as if we were surrounded by a sea of Mertensia. The colony ran for about 70 yards on either side of the stream. Our heads were at the level of the flowers.
We followed our plan that we had agreed upon earlier, so we did not need to enter into random speech which did not include the sensitive beings that were now our hosts. This was: introduce ourselves, express our appreciation, enter a meditative state—the Journey– to ask to know the medicine of their kind, and ask for the appropriate thing to offer to them in exchange for the gift of their medicine. After the Journey, we would ask for a small offering of the flower, clip it into the glass jar containing water from that stream which we had pumped with our water filter, add half pure alcohol. When we felt the spirit of the plant entering the water, the flower essence would be ready.
Sitting in the colony of Mertensia, we immediately felt elevated to a sublime state. This flower is about an inch long, with a tiny trumpet connecting to a barrel-shape. They arrange themselves in clusters which hang down. From a distance, and even from a few feet away, they appear a periwinkle blue. Up close, the pastel pink merging with the blue is quite evident–the colors of dusk and dawn.
We were beaming as we introduced ourselves, and we threw up our arms, singing—you are so beautiful! We gazed around us, acknowledging all the individuals of the colony. We explained that we hoped to know their medicine, and would like to exchange a gift with them, and were looking for the right gift. We entered into meditation on this intention.
When we returned, we shared our experiences.
Becky: The plant was very gentle. Very gentle and light… heavenly, in the sense that it was more about space than solid. If we conceive of a range of colors to represent the earthly realm, graduated toward the heavenly realm, these colors are toward the higher range of the heavenly realm.
The Tibetan Buddhist tanka paintings are made with little dots. The tiny dots shape the forms in the painting. In this ancient art form, the dots represent space, and the intermingling of heavenly and earthly realms. We can see in this art form the spaciousness of the union of heaven and earth—which is also about life and death and male and female. In the art form of the Mertensia, we see this intermingling of heaven and earth. It grows from the rocks, and manifests the sweet heavenly energy of the dusk and dawn pastels in its blossoms
The energy of Mertensia is precious like the quality of baby Jesus being held. Also, like the humility of Mother Mary, always with her head slightly bowed.
Zia: It was not a plant I would have chosen, but it was so right for me. When I reviewed the circumstances which led to me journeying to this plant, I realized that it chose me.
In my journey, I entered the chamber of the Mertensia bloom—through the trumpet and into the barrel of the flower. I rested back, as if on a hammock of pastel blue and pink. Mertensia emerged from the wall of the flower in the form of a beautiful woman in her maturity, yet ever youthful. She was wearing a delicate dress of humility. The slight bow of her head reminiscent of the Christian Mother Mary, she is a teacher of the value of humility. And, the strength of humility. Yet, she is not diminishing herself in any way.
She acknowledged my presence with a glowing beam from her entire body, radiating out to me. She acknowledged with a nod that I was seeing her accurately, recognizing her qualities, her essence, her medicine.
Reading the physical environment that she was in for meaning, I noticed, she is one who springs up from the watery rock slide, bringing that gentle energy to the rocky area. They can help heal those that have seen a rocky road, and there we were—Becky and I—we qualified. It can help people that have had that type of challenge, to have hope and recognize the beauty that can come from those difficult experiences. Like the Chiming Bells that build soil there in the rocks year after year, it takes time to transition out of deep loss, and the gentle etheric energies are such a help in this process.
This visit was extremely personal for me. She saw me very accurately. She was telling me to drop in and be more humble. To trust that my influence will be felt. I don’t need to come out so much, seeking influence, but my influence will be felt if I contain my own energy, and trust that holding my place will have a transformative effect on the energy around me. My dreams will manifest by simply staying present and staying in touch with the Light.
Mertensia was suggesting that it may be more important to share my presence than to share my point of view. My point of view may not be as important as the larger picture of what is going on. The plant was suggesting that I trust that larger picture to unfold—with humbleness.
When I asked what gift would be appropriate for me to give for the gift of her medicine, I immediately saw myself offering an aquatic bodywork session once a month to the Women’s Shelter that is down the road from my home office. This felt perfect—to help these women who have known a rocky road, and are looking to intermingle with lighter, more heavenly energies–those that are available in the warm water of Agua Alma, as well as in the Chiming Bells.
After sharing our stories, we clipped three tiny Chiming Bells into the little jar we had prepared for making a flower essence. We both felt the spirit of the Mertensia saturated the water immediately. We capped it. Said a final resounding Thank You! Thank You Mertensia, Lady Mertensia, Chiming Bells. Thank you!
I felt so satisfied. I needed time to digest these lessons. It would have been too much to journey to a second plant right away. I felt I wanted to complete my exchange before doing another journey.
We started down the valley to camp.