Dr Edward Bach
Early medical careerEdward Bach studied medicine first in Birmingham and later at the University College Hospital, London, where he was House Surgeon. He also worked in private practice, having a set of consulting rooms in Harley Street. As a bacteriologist and pathologist he undertook original research into vaccines in his own research laboratory.
In 1917 Dr. Bach was working on the wards tending to soldiers returned injured from France. One day he collapsed and was rushed into an operating theatre suffering from a severe hemorrhage. His colleagues operated to remove a tumor, but the prognosis was poor. When he came round they told Bach that he had only three months left to live.
As soon as he could get out of bed, Bach returned to his laboratory. He intended to advance his work as far as he could in the short time that remained. But as the weeks went by he began to get stronger. The three months came and went and found him in better health than ever. He was convinced that his sense of purpose was what saved him: he still had work to do.
Once there he soon noticed the parallels between his work on vaccines and the principles of homoeopathy. He adapted his vaccines to produce a series of seven homoeopathic nosodes. This work and its subsequent publication brought him some fame in homoeopathic circles. People began to refer to him as 'the second Hahnemann'.
The flower remediesUp to now Bach had been working with bacteria, but he wanted to find remedies that would be purer and less reliant on the products of disease. He began collecting plants and in particular flowers - the most highly-developed part of a plant - in the hope of replacing the nosodes with a series of gentler remedies.
By 1930 he was so enthused by the direction his work was taking that he gave up his lucrative Harley Street practice and left London, determined to devote the rest of his life to the new system of medicine that he was sure could be found in nature. He took with him as his assistant a radiographer called Nora Weeks.
Just as he had abandoned his home, office and work, Dr. Bach began to abandon the scientific method and its reliance on laboratories and reductionism. He fell back instead on his natural gifts as a healer, and more and more allowed his intuition to guide him to the right plants.
Over years of trial and error, which involved preparing and testing thousands of plants, he found one by one the remedies he wanted. Each was aimed at a particular mental state or emotion. He found that when he treated the personalities and feelings of his patients their unhappiness and physical distress would be alleviated naturally as the healing potential in their bodies was unblocked and allowed to work once more.
His life followed a seasonal pattern from 1930 to 1934: the spring and summer spent looking for and preparing the remedies; the winter giving help and advice to all who came looking for them. Most winters were spent in the coastal town of Cromer. Here he met and became friends with a local builder and healer, Victor Bullen.
A year after announcing that his search for remedies was complete, Dr Bach passed away peacefully on the evening of November 27th, 1936. He was only 50 years old, but he had outlived his doctors' prognosis by nearly 20 years. He left behind him several lifetime's experience and effort, and a system of medicine that is used all over the world.
He left his work in the hands of his friends and colleagues Nora Weeks and Victor Bullen, with instructions that they should carry on his work and stay true to the essential simplicity of what he had done. In a letter to Victor dated 26th October 1936, a month before his death, he wrote:
People like ourselves who have tasted the glory of self-sacrifice, the glory of helping our brothers, once we have been given a jewel of such magnitude, nothing can deviate us from our path of love and duty to displaying its lustre, pure and unadorned to the people of the world.Nora and Victor stayed true to those ideals of simplicity and sharing, as does the Bach Centre today.
The man behind the Bach Flower RemediesDr Bach is often known as the father of modern flower remedies. With a vision way-ahead of most of his contemporaries, he understood that the true cause of illness and disease in human beings lies in the personality - in the mental and emotional patterns through which we view ourselves and the world around us. His beautiful set of 38 Bach Flower Remedies was created out of a true desire to help humanity to understand and heal these patterns.
Dr Bach's Life...
Edward Bach is born on the 24th September in Moseley, Manchester.
His great calling to help people led him to enter Birmingham University to study Medicine
Qualifies as a medical doctor from University College Hospital, London
Takes up the position of Casualty Medical Officer at U.C.H.
1913 - 1918
Becomes interested in Bacteriology, and his work with Intestinal Toxemia gains recognition in the medical profession.
Dr Bach is appointed Pathologist & Bacteriologist at the London Homoeopathic Hospital, and first comes into contact with Homoeopathy and the work of Samuel Hahnemann
Develops the 7 Bach nosodes
Gives up his post at the LHH to concentrate on his work with the Bach nosodes, which prove to be very successful.
Gains reputation as the "second Hahnemann"
Dr Bach's very successful Harley Street practice expands ever more along with his reputation
Start of Dr Bach's 'new work'. His wish to replace the 7 nosodes with natural herbs lead him to discover the first of his 3 remedies; Clematis, Impatiens & Mimulus(*1)
Towards the end of the year he gives up using the very successful Bach nosodes and concentrates solely on the use of his 3 new remedies.
Edward Bach leaves London, his tremendous reputation and work with the nosodes, and his highly successful Harley Street practice, to focus entirely on his new work with the remedies. He moves to Wales ( May - July) to devote his time to finding more remedies.
While in Wales he perfects the Sun Method of potentisation.(*2)
Moves to Cromer in Norfolk and discovers 6 more remedies.
Publishes 'Heal Thyself', which explains his new understanding of illness and disease and its causes.
Discovers 2 more remedies
Writes Free Thyself
Discovers the rest of the 12 Healers.
Moves to the village of Sotwell in Berkshire
Discovers another 19 remedies, most of which are boiling method remedies (*3)
Published the 'Twelve Healers & Other Remedies', his completed understandings about his remedies and their uses.
Dr Edward Bach dies in his sleep on the 27th November
"Life, to him, was continuous: an unbroken stream, uninterrupted by what we call death, which merely heralded a change of conditions; and he was convinced that some work could only be done under earthly conditions, whilst spiritual conditions were necessary for certain other work."
Nora Weeks from the 'Medical Discoveries of Edward Bach Physician'