“The art of medicine, Consists in amusing the patient. While nature cures the disease.”
And that couldn’t make more sense! However, we were treated, the course of nature would do its duty in healing us. The course of whatever medication was prescribed, we’d still have to detox ourselves and be as pure as we could. Our eating and living habits would dramatically change once we were dealing with any ailment.
No matter what minor ailment we suffered through when we were kids, Mothers would always know the quickest remedy using a mix of herbs and secret ingredients that were passed on from generation to generation through her mother and so on. The bases of this trust were entirely upon the knowledge of ancient herbs and their assured medicinal abilities to heal.
Nature does play a major role in these cures. Our bodies consist of self-healing abilities that get clouded by the impurities that surround us today. Home remedies have a huge history behind them. A clear example of herbal remedies that have moved through many lifetimes to reach us today are essential oils. The phenomenon of how quickly these aromatic healing oils have gained popularity throughout the world is no mystery nor it’s a new discovery.
For the love of Oils
The use of essential oils in healing practices earliest uses have been recorded about 5000 years ago in Egypt. They were renowned for their knowledge of cosmetology, ointments and aromatic oils. At the peak of its powerful Monarchy, it was only the high priests that had authority to use aromatic oils. They believed aromatic oils helped to cleanse and purify and was essential in the practice to be one with the Gods. Specifically made oils were dedicated and anointed for each deity. Queen Cleopatra famous for her beauty that made the world’s most powerful emperor bow down to her ethereal grace, quite obviously took her beauty regime very seriously. It was known that her immense love for essential oils and knowledge for cosmetics pursued her to open her onw spa. Cleopatra also wrote a book called Cleopatra Gynaeciarum Libri around 50Bc, which unfortunately has been lost, though other references say that the book contained remarkable recipes for essential oil combinations as well as beauty products. The Pharaohs too had their own special blends of oils they diligently used for Meditation, War and Love.
During the Crusades, the Knights were responsible for passing the knowledge of herbal medicines to Western Europe. They had acquired the art of distillation and perfumes from Middle East. While researching the properties of essential oils, French Chemist René-Maurice Gattefossé coined the term “Aromatherapie”. His book under the same name was published in 1928 which details the healing capabilities of essential oils. With a positive response of using these essential oils, the popularity of the use of Aromatherapie grew throughout Europe.
Gattefossé stumbled upon the incredible healing properties of essential oils during a mishap in his laboratory. During an explosion, his hand got severely burnt and in the chaos, he quickly reached out to the nearest vessel that contained liquid and immersed his hand in it. To his astonishment, the burn soon healed with no scarring or infections. The miracle liquid that healed him was essential oil Lavender.
And… the Romance continues
Essential oils have proven throughout history that they have tremendous healing affects not only when used topically but also for holistic healing. These one of a kind herbs have remarkable qualities that can heal mentally, physically and emotionally. Essential oils aren’t oils at all, since they lack fatty acids, they are highly concentrated plant components. A large amount of plants are used to extract a small portion of essential oil, hence some of them can be expensive. The high quality therapeutic grade oils are pure, steam distilled and prove to be extremely medicinal. Apart from the obvious effects these oils have, here are a few unconventional yet tried and tested healing abilities these most popularly used essential oils embody.
Or Lavander in French derived from the Latin word Lavare meaning to wash. Perhaps it refers to the use of its infusions of plants. The ancient Greeks called the Lavender herb nardus after the Syrian city of Naarda. Lavender was one holy herbs used in the biblical temples to prepare holy essence. Being one of the most versatile of oils, Lavender is more popularly known for its relaxing effects. The soothing fragrance calms the nerves by reducing the levels of stress hormones in your blood. Known to effectively to help with insomnia, adding a few drops to your bath water can help calm tight muscles and ease headaches and body aches. Spiritualist believe that the fragrance of lavender oil help create serenity within the body, mind and soul during meditation due to its calming effects and has also the power to induce lucid dreams when used at bedtime.
According to an ancient myth, it’s said that the Virgin Mary spread her blue cloak over a bush of white blossomed rosemary while she was resting and the flowers turned blue. The shrub was then christened as the “Rose of Mary” and was considered sacred to the ancient Egyptians, Romans and Greeks. In the middle ages, Rosemary was associated with wedding ceremonies as it was thought to be a love charm. Even till today Holistic healers uses these herbs is healing with matters of the heart as the fragrance is said to help in energising your heart chakra during meditation. In Shakespeare’s play Hamlet, Ophelia says, “There’s Rosemary, that’s for remembrance” Rosemary is believed to have powers to strengthen memory. Diffusing this essential oil or lightly inhaling the fumes form the bottle helps to sharpen the memory and the ability to learn.
In 1770, Captain James Cook while aboard the H.M.S Endeavor he landed at Botany Bay. He discovered natives brewing a concoction of viscous, camphor like leaves of the Melaleuca tree. The native Australians swore by the healing properties contained within the leaf and with scarcity of their own forms of the medicines the English were astonished to find that the poultice made of these crushed leaves fought infection and swiftly healed the wounds. Throughout history Tea tree oil has been identified as having antibacterial, antiseptic, anti-inflammatory and preventive qualities.
It's believed that lemongrass essential oil may have exported during the 17th century by the Philippines as distribution was limited the oil remained unheard of. In 1905 while researching on the properties of the Lemongrass plant, J.F Jovit from Sri Lanka learned more about the oil that the plant produced and soon word of its benefits spread around. It was not until 1947 in Florida, Haiti that the first commercial cultivation of Lemongrass oil started. Apart from being effective in killing bacterial and fungal infections it has that ability to kill cancer cells without damaging healthy cells. The oil works wonders for relaxation during massages or holistic healing therapies. The calming and soothing aroma of lemongrass is becoming most popular today with treating sleeping disorders, stress and even depression. The rich history behind these ancient herbal medicines proves that trust and faith in them ardently continues. The power to heal and energise your senses soothingly through Aromatherapie is soon being recognised as an effective and trusted remedy for many ailments the world over. So, be reassured that no matter how you come to learn about essential oils, the history that began this legacy would forever continue. The people that have put their heart and soul into the trust they had for these herbs, is proof enough that their truly remarkable healing qualities have emerged unbeaten even till today.
Watch our video on how to find out if your essential oil is fake or real Happy Healing Ya’ll!