August 11, 2012

Syringa vulgaris
Activate: Flexibility
Message: Adapt quickly to changes.

Many people adore lilacs - and for some it’s their favorite flower of all time. Part of the magic is that they only bloom for a short time, so it brings back a specific type of nostalgic time for people ... after the freezing cold winter, when the sun comes out, the days are warmer and the excitement about springtime is abound. Lilacs also bloom near Mother’s Day and remind some people of their mothers and grandmothers.

I remember being enchanted by lilac flowers when I was a small child in Minnesota. I think I must’ve been about four years old. Somewhere in a box - in a closet somewhere - there’s an old Polaroid photo of me sitting on the ground underneath giant lilac bushes that were bursting with flowers.

Lilac flower LOTUSWEI flower essences

Why It's Special

Lilacs are native to Asia and Eastern Europe. They were brought to the Americas in the 1600’s. Like many plants that were transported across the big oceans to the Americas, the first Lilacs were planted in botanical gardens. Both Thomas Jefferson and George Washington grew Lilacs in their personal gardens.

Butterflies love lilacs, too! They are the pollinators of lilacs, so anytime you’re around these colorful beauties, the magic and gentle fluttering of butterflies abounds.

Lilac flower LOTUSWEI flower essences

Lilacs are in the broader genus of Oleaceae, which is the olive family. Surprisingly, there are 1,000 different varieties of Lilac bushes and trees! Lilac bushes grow from six to twenty feet tall. Lilac trees in Asia, like the Peking Lilac Tree and the Japanese Lilac Tree, both grow over 30 feet tall.

Lilacs only bloom for several weeks each year in springtime. Inhaling the deep sweet aroma of Lilac flowers is an ephemeral experience and a cherished treat that’s often linked to precious memories.

white lilac LOTUSWEI flower essences

I tend to think of lilacs as a deep violet, but lilacs can be white, pink, red, lavender, yellow and blue! Many people believe that the deep purple flower clusters tend to have strongest fragrance, but really it depends on the the species of the particular plant, along with its terroir, the conditions of its environment: moisture, soil conditions, location, climate and weather patterns.

Though the flower is extremely delicate, the Lilac plant is extremely hardy; some varieties can survive temperatures down to -60oF. The wood is extremely dense, and has been used to create musical instruments and knives. And their longevity is impressive: Lilac bushes can live for hundreds of years! 

Lilac flower LOTUSWEI flower essences

Our Lilac flower elixir is really special, because it’s even more elusive and precious - growing in the high desert of Santa Fe, New Mexico, at an altitude of over 7000 feet. Originally brought to the area in the 1851, Lilacs now grow wild in Santa Fe. The flowers look the same, but the plant looks different from the Lilac in northern regions of the U.S. Not as tall and bushy - it’s more delicate and seems somehow more fleeting than the lilacs in the north. 

I never would’ve guessed that Lilacs would grow in the high desert, so when I discovered them on a trip to Santa Fe, I immediately set out to make their essence. Lucky I did, because a year later - due to a drought - they didn’t bloom at all. They grew their rich, glossy green leaves in springtime ... but no flowers bloomed. So this essence is a treasure!

lilac flower LOTUSWEI flower essences

What It Reveals

If you're attracted to the Lilac flower, you may be clinging to things being a certain way. There may be a situation in which you want to control the outcome. You may wish for things to be different, and when your expectations are not met, find yourself feeling uncomfortable or depressed. When plans unexpectedly change, you may find it difficult to adapt quickly enough.

There may be areas of your life in which you've become controlling or rigid in your ideas. You may find yourself being hard on yourself for this reason, or judging what is best for others. At times you may feel there's only one right way, which closes you off to other possibilities.

Lilac flower LOTUSWEI flower essences

What the Elixir Catalyzes

The Lilac plant has having tremendous strength and fortitude, with flowers that teach us how to accept the impermanence of life. Everything changes. And not surprisingly, this is wisdom that the Lilac Flower Elixir imparts: Lilac helps us loosen up and free ourselves from clinging to things being a certain way, transforming attachments to people, places and outcomes.

It gives us a taste of non-attachment which is very freeing, helping us embrace change and go with the flow. It helps us be more flexible, while letting go of rigid ideas and the desire to control outcomes.

Just as Lilac flowers come and go in the blink of an eye, the elixir allows us to cherish the life, just as it is. Life is so fleeting: Lilac helps us adapt quickly to surprises with a flexible, accepting heart.

And the Lilac fragrance is elusive - only allowing itself to be captured with mindful tending and a several-day process, slowing us down to the rhythm of Mother Nature. Lilacs teach us patience, which is another word for ‘being at peace with the way things are’

Experience the magic of Lilac!
In Essence

{Magnifies}: sense of freedom, non-attachment, going with the flow, accepting things they way they are; flexibility and open-mindedness to seeing new opportunities available when attachments are released; ability to embrace change and open to broader perspectives; enhanced ability to rejoice in others’ happiness and accept others as they are without wanting to change them.

{Dissolves}: attachment, neediness, feeling like there’s only one way, rigid ideas or control, feeling like we’re incomplete without a certain person, place or condition; wishing for things to be a different way, our way, or wishing for things to change.

Love + flower petals,


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