(excerpted from The Essential Flower Essence Handbook)
Message of Self-Mastery: Strong, quiet sense of self and self-worth; for grounding; reliability; for leaving a dysfunctional childhood in the past; poise; gracefulness; being fully present and comfortable in, and about, one’s body.
Pattern of Disharmony: Guilt-ridden; low sense of self-worth; self-blaming; feeling unworthy, undeserving; irresponsible; being ungrounded; unsure of self; history of emotionally abusive parents; for psychic over-sensitivity; compares self to others, as in “why couldn’t I be more like him.”
I am strong in myself, for I am one with what IS!
|Solid||Loving of beauty|
|Quiet||Healthy body image|
|Poor self-image||“Psychic sponge”|
|Lacking in self-worth||Dealing with a break-up|
|Feeling lost||Overly apologetic|
|Relationship difficulties||Feeling inadequate|
|Self-blaming||Comparing self to others|
|Abandonment issues||Fearful of aging|
“Strawberry not only helped me to support myself better but to understand my husband as well. On this essence I was able to know more of what his work means to him, his love for it-I couldn’t before. It also allowed me to tell him that I wanted to move, that we are living in a place that doesn’t work for me.” – UK, Plano, TX
“I wanted to try your essences for my store. I found myself needing to get more grounded. I am very sensitive psychically and am too much out of my body. The Strawberry really got things moving and stabilized me. Results were very noticeable.” -JL, Guerneville, CA
“I noticed a much more even energy on Strawberry-didn’t get as bothered by things, like the children saying, ‘I hate school and I’ll never go again!'” -AB, Nevada City, CA
“I felt better, more centered, more confident. I teel like a different person! Strawberry gave me a different way of looking at myself. Something has changed – including my handwriting! It feels like a light came on that had been turned off for a long time.” -VK, Nevada City, CA
“I felt a difference in the first few days on Strawberry in that my attitude toward myself changed. The mental tapes I had been running were replaced by new, more uplifting ones. I could feel that at a deep subtle level, I was different. There were no other external changes to which I could attribute these results. Inwardly I had been trying for a long time without success.” -JC, Sacramento, CA
“But if a man happens to find himself. . .he has a mansion which he can inhabit with dignity all the days of his life.” -James Michener
Strawberry belongs to the genus Fragaria, from the Latin word for fragrant, owing to the fruit’s sweet smell. It is a member of the rose family. The strawberry originated in North and South America and early varieties date back to the 1500’s. In 1643, Roger Williams said, “God could have made, but God never did make, a better berry.” The strawberry, however, having no seeds within its fleshy pulp, is not classified as a true berry. A perennial herb with clusters of small leaves and white flowers, the strawberry plant grows low to the ground. Its runners will take root and grow new plants. The fruit is a good source of vitamin C, potassium and fruit sugar. Fresh strawberries will remove tooth stains, soothe sunburn and lighten freckles. High in dietary fiber, they are beneficial to the intestinal tract and are considered a “food of youth.”
(see explanation of The Essence Spectrum Chart)
Located in the very mid-section of Quadrant IV, this essence embodies a feminine maturity, fullness, comfort and poise. Date’s sweetness has rendered us good-natured; now Strawberry makes us gracious and ennobled. This essence knows itself, but in a much softer, quieter way than the conspicuous Pineapple. Strawberry, enriched by Quadrant IV’s growing wisdom, loves the beauty of life, seeks it out and finds it readily.
Strawberry is especially helpful during times of transition, for these are the times when we are more likely to doubt ourselves. We may merely need to adjust to specific changes in our bodies or environments: puberty, mid-life crisis, or menopause. Strawberry is also helpful during the dissolution of relationships; for the person who is left; and for the child dealing with a divorce. It helps us to remain present in the moment and deal with the issues at hand and, ultimately, to realize that all of our needs are met from within ourselves, thereby banishing a sense of lack.
Some years ago, a well known astrologer came for a consultation. The woman with whom he was deeply in love seemed unable to make a commitment to him. This situation was beginning to cause him much suffering. After one week on Strawberry, he decided that it was time to clarify the relationship and take a stand. He presented her with a choice; commit, or he was leaving. The stars were in his favor. She was impressed by his decisiveness. They have been married-happily, I’m told-for some time now.
There is much talk these days of self-esteem, a term defined as either belief in oneself or conceit. Strawberry’s message-an important and oft-needed one in individual essence programs-is not so much to esteem ourselves as to walk, breathe and speak from the state of our true source of loving dignity, which is divinity. Isn’t this much better than merely esteeming ourselves?
Strawberry embodies the issues that we all have to address at some time in our lives. Perhaps we suffer moments or possibly decades of self-doubt and unworthiness. Anything less than an ideal childhood- that probably includes most of the human race-can foster problems with self-worth. Any time we fail at a task is a potential time of questioning. “I’m just not good enough”; “I can’t do anything right”-these are thought patterns indicating the need for Strawberry. It is also the essence for self-blame, feelings of inadequacy and guilt over many issues, including sexuality.
Strawberry-like self-worth issues are imprinted by parents on their children. Children, in turn reaching adulthood, recreate these patterns, possibly perpetuating generations of unhealthy family patterning. But with energy, insight and grace, the dysfunctional spell may be broken. Strawberry is an excellent remedy for freeing us from these deeply ingrained, hurtful patterns.
This key essence vibrationally encourages the expression of grounding, centering and feeling integrated in our body, during adolescence in particular. It is helpful for children and adults who tend to be spacey, dreamy or irresponsible. Because of its grounding effect, it strengthens those who are psychically oversensitive and need to be less affected by the energies of others.
(see explanation of Theme Flower Essences)
Many years ago, I encountered a small girl, ten years at most, who beautifully personified the Strawberry theme. During my travels in India, I had the good fortune to spend several days aboard a houseboat on Kashmir’s Dal Lake. This young girl, a saleswoman of sorts, spent her days paddling alongside the tourist shikaras (small, festive boats), selling freshly picked lotus blossoms. As she tossed flower clusters into our boat, I asked, “How much?” “Whatever you like,” she replied in English, so unlike the other “hawkers,” as they were called, who cared for little else besides our rupees. This girl emulated the dignity of one born to nobility rather than peasantry. She neither accosted us with beggary nor imposed on us with pride.
In the Strawberry theme, we find one who owns a kingly spirit and can play even the role of beggar or servant with the graciousness befitting nobility. These individuals emote a certain regality of posture. Their very pose says, “I deserve to carry myself upright.” Graceful in their body language, their gestures tend to be grand but also quiet- unlike Pineapple themes who can be grandiose, indeed, but minus Strawberry’s poise. And what makes Strawberry themes so beautiful? Their ability to see beauty everywhere-in everything and everyone, including themselves.
An interesting keynote of Strawberry themes is that the women tend to be very feminine and the men notably masculine-not to be confused with macho-in ways that communicate the higher octave of their gender. Designers, artisans, ballet dancers and opera stars-these connoisseurs of beauty are all illustrative of the Strawberry theme. These people also make very healing companions. Their quiet bearing reminds us that we are all deserving of life’s riches.
FAMOUS THEME PERSONALITIES
- Sophia Loren
- Grace Kelly
- Rudolph Valentino
- Jacqueline Onassis
- Fred Astaire
- Princess Di
- The Ugly Duckling
- Lady (of Lady and The Tramp)
- Princess in The Princess and The Pea
- Amelita Galli-Curci
Not all Strawberry themes are physically beautiful but, at the same time, the quality of dignity beautifies them. Sophia Loren is our classic and classy rags-to-riches Strawberry theme profile. This “Napolitana,” born Sophia Scicolone in a ward for unwed mothers eventually married a multi-millionaire. More importantly, through commitment and hard work, she became one of the greatest Strawberry themes ever to grace the movie screens. Ms. Loren shares in her autobiography that she never sells herself short or judges herself by other people’s standards. Adhering to high ideals, she claims full responsibility for her successes and failures alike.
All too often, the aging process robs people of their physical beauty and reveals beneath it the “meannesses of the heart,” as they are called in yogic teachings. Ms. Loren defines age, simply, as how you feel about yourself. Although now in her senior years, this Strawberry theme has grown more stunning over time. “I’m convinced that outward beauty is directly connected with inward beauty,” she relates. “Eyes are not beautiful simply because they are big and wide set, but also because they express something that radiates from the inner woman. My eyes are a precise mirror of my soul.”13 The timeless beauty of Ms. Loren’s dedication to ennobling qualities honorably represents her as a true Strawberry theme.
CONFESSIONS OF A STRAWBERRY THEME: LINDA’S TALE
“My childhood was a different one because I was born in Australia and we traveled around a great deal. When I was six, we went to Burma for three years, then America for a year and Singapore for three years. My father was an international air conditioner salesman. He was Australian and my mother was American. I had a sort of ambivalent upbringing. I don’t think my home life was particularly good or bad. My father had problems with drinking, although he maintained a job his whole life. My early years were ones of cocktail parties and servants.
“My strengths? I think I’m a loyal friend, a good mother, a good wife. Being a good mother means simply wanting to be a good mother. You can’t ever really know what the other person truly needs-you can just try to be there as much as you can to the degree you’re able to perceive their needs. I think to some degree I am probably over-responsible. I try too hard to meet other people’s needs. Guilt too is an issue for me-not feeling good enough, not feeling worthy.
“I would say I have lots of dignity. I have an awareness of what dignity is-being centered in oneself. There’s an aspect of behavioral awareness. I was raised more by my father who had the British sense of proper behavior-‘this is done and this isn’t done’ sort of thing. I think that contributes to a sort of social self-control and sense of dignity.
“I like strawberries, though I wouldn’t say I adore them. But on the other hand, one doesn’t get good strawberries any more. Those you get in the stores are just sort of sour or watery, so I have only a vague recollection of really sweet strawberries. I tried to grow them this summer but didn’t succeed very well.”
WRAPPING IT UP
Quiet dignity springs from deep self-knowledge. Strawberry allows us to honor our true worth and inner strength. Its pervasive quietude springs from a sense of acceptance that life has given to, and taken from, us according to our own role in the grander scheme of things. Whatever now is, simply is. The little Strawberry’s quality of self-acceptance becomes Self-acceptance. Like rightful kings and queens, we sit on the throne of our own divinity.
|STRAWBERRY||Contrasted With:||Companioned With:|
|Banana||quiet dignity through humility||for seeing dysfunction as a part of the process toward integration as lessons are learned|
|Peach||for stable and clear-flowing energy||for integrity developed through the act of giving; conscious mothering with healthy boundaries|
|Pineapple||well-developed sense of self and healthy, confident self-image||for strength of character and a well integrated, functional personality|
Go to the opera, symphony, ballet or theater.
Go shopping. Buy yourself something special that says “you are worth it.”
Treat yourself to a special meal out.
Pay attention to your posture. Especially keep your shoulders back-no slumping!
Identify with your strengths, your talents, your special brand of goodness. Do not allow yourself to fall prey to self-deprecating thoughts.
Close your eyes. Focus on your breathing. Imagine that each inhalation makes you slightly taller and more majestic in spirit. With each exhalation, relax the muscles of your face more deeply. Bring the focus of your attention, drawn through the act of smiling and relaxing the muscles around your eyes, to the point between and just above your eyebrows. The purpose of fixity at this point is to uplift you, to free you from all the mental chains that have weighted you down in your waking existence. Imagine now in some detail, that all sense of unworthiness, imperfection and lack fall away from you with each ensuing breath.
You are floating, floating in space, wafting upward on clouds of comfort, clouds of contentment. A deep sense of fulfillment-the riches of kings, queens and empires-permeates the temple of your body, your mind, and your spirit. These are the riches of royalty-only they are not counted in gold coins and material trinkets. Yours are the riches of character, full to overflowing with noble qualities gathered over many years-worthwhile years, happy years, ennobling years.
Return now to the welcome friend of each breath. When you are ready, open your eyes and silently repeat the following affirmation.