She calls herself a ‘flower witch’ but it is more than just wearing spooky clothes on Halloween.
“Halloween is a very western concept. When I call myself a witch, I say so from a feminist perspective. Who were the witches really? They were offbeat women with a mind of their own and were not afraid to speak it. They were one with nature, deviating from the norm and that’s why they were persecuted. In fairytales and dramas, witches have always been portrayed in a negative image. But, I think they were the finest characters, in fact, much better than the damsels in distress, says Jhelum Biswas Bose, author, founder of holistic healing beauty brand Jhelum Loves and certified Bach Flower Remedy therapist.
Her debut book, Phool Proof, is all about the therapeutic effect of flowers and chakra healing as well as Bach Flower Remedies on common beauty concerns...and emotions.
“While writing the manuscripts I realized that all my healings are centred around flowers whether it is aromatherapy or anything else. And, I have always loved flowers,” she says. You are what you feel Jhelum endorses the ancient wisdom that most of your ailments are a manifestation of what you are feeling.
Flower therapy in India has been prevalent since the time of Raavana. She tells us about the book, Arka Prakasha, written by the celebrated Ramayana villain, that talks about floral tinctures, therapy and their benefits. “The healing aspect of flowers became clearer to me when I suffered a series of asthmatic ailments and was on antibiotics or antihistamines every month. A friend suggested I try the Rescue Remedy and the Crab Apple remedy. The more I used it the better I felt not only physically but also emotionally,” she says.
This led to her getting herself certified as a Bach Flower Therapist and now, wants to share the flower power. “My beauty brand Jhelum Loves and even our traditional Ayurveda as well as other ‘alternative medicines’ look to heal the person and not the manifestation of the problems. Whatever is going inside you will reflect on your skin and hair. Every ailment has an emotional root so when you heal that the problem will automatically take care of itself,” she says.
While she does strongly advises getting a consultation from your therapist before self-diagnosing, Jhelum gave a sneak peek into what could be causing your beauty woes:
“Acne is outbursts of negative emotions within you and sometimes, even hormonal imbalances. There is Cherry Plum floral remedy, which is given when your emotions are not in control and you are prone to outbursts of anger.”
“In most cases, dark circles are caused due to stress, anger, inability to express and sleeplessness due to overthinking. So, for this I suggest the Dreamcatcher treatment using White Chestnut that helps with the constant worrying feelings, soothing Lavender oil and Chamomile. So, all these things calm your mind and you can sleep better so that your dark circles get reduced too.”
Pigmentation or dark spots
“To alleviate this problem I would advise a Bach Flower Remedy mix after consultation and probably, citrus essential oil and Crab Apple that is an excellent cleanser.”
“This issue is also caused by hormonal imbalances, stress, change of weather which is why Walnut Bach Flower Remedy helps you tide over the unpleasant changes in your life. Scleranthus and Crab Apple also help in this case to alleviate hormonal imbalance. In case of stress, I put in White Chestnut, which can help quieten down the mental chatter.”
“This is not an issue that I can just speak about offhandedly. But most of our anti-ageing treatments have Crab Apple and Honey Suckle because people who undergo premature ageing usually feel nostalgic about the past.” Well, looks like we will have to make trips to the phool mandi ASAP for flawless skin.
Ask her what’s her favourite flower and Jhelum offers a worthy contender - “The fragrant desi Gulab! Not only does it have a strong aroma and a strong energy field, but it also has fabulous tales around it. There is one about Emperor Jahangir and Mehrunnisa when they had a public altercation in the court. The Queen ended up slapping the emperor…”
And to know how that story ends, just pick up her book!