We were at the most magical hot springs in northwestern Iceland - off the beaten trail - next to what looked like a hobbit house that we used as a fairytale-like changing room.
Surrounded by fluorescent mossy hills and tiny waterfalls, we discovered Wild Pansies growing on the dry rocky slope on the way up to the hot springs.
As we soaked in the hot water, we met a couple that was wildly in love. We chatted with each other and looked into each other’s eyes - sharing stories about our favorite places and experiences in Iceland thus far. I felt their exhilaration from being in love mix with our exhilaration of being in such a special place, blossoming into some kind of alchemically explosive and palpable energetic wave of joy that emitted from all of us, as we we quietly soaked there together in the hot springs, high on the magic of life.
In Iceland, Wild Pansy is called, Heartsease. Hilariously, other names for it are: ’tickle my fancy’, ‘come and cuddle me’, ‘johnny jump up’, ‘jack jump up and kiss me’ and ‘love-in-idleness’. A part of the violet family, it is a tiny plant that moves by “creeping and ramping” which means that despite its small size, it can thrust itself a meter deep into the thick foliage of other plant life.
Wild Pansies bloom in Iceland from May through June, on rocky slopes or lichen-filled expanses. In North America Wild Pansies typically bloom through September. They are hermaphrodites, meaning they self-pollinate with the help of bees.
In herbalism and folk remedies, Wild Pansy has been used for respiratory and skin imbalances as well as epilepsy and arthritis. It is antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, diuretic and helpful in the prevention of chronic illness. In Iceland, the flower was also used for cradle cap, itchy skin, bruises, broken veins, cystitis and to regulate blood pressure. For more about herbal dosages for Wild Pansy, explore this book: Icelandic Herbs and their Medicinal Uses, by Anna Rosa Robertsdottir.
Not only medicinal, Wild Pansy is beloved for its beauty and color. An exquisite addition to any salad, Wild Pansy flowers are full of edible antioxidants. You can also wrap goat cheese with the flowers in an elegant display with nutritional value. In botanical dying, the flowers are used to make teal, green and yellow dyes, while the leaves contain acidity for shifting colors. In Iceland, the flowers are used to dye sheep’s wool and paper.
Historically Wild Pansy is a flower that lovers have turned to in order to ease their worries, thus the name Heartsease. In Roman mythology, Cupid shot his arrow and missed the intended recipient, instead striking a white flower, turning it purple and giving it love potion super powers.
In Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, it is Wild Pansy that is used as the love potion to make people fall in and out of love, altering romantic fates. In this comedy of errors, if juice from the Heartsease was placed on a sleeping person’s eyelids, upon waking, they would fall madly in love with the very next person they saw upon opening their eyes.
If you are attracted to the Wild Pansy, there is a part of you that wants to come out of your shell. Even if you are a fairly outgoing person, there may be an aspect of your personality - a vulnerability, an artistic talent or some part of you - that wants to emerge in a bigger way.
There is a new activity, talent or quality that wants to take priority in your life, becoming more central stage for the world to see. A new part of you wants to be seen that you may have felt shy about previously.
Wild Pansy elixir works through old patterns and knots around fears of ‘being seen’’ - as well as the parts of us that we like to keep guarded from being seen. It dissolves shyness, feeling awkward, embarrassed or uneasy in our bodies. It enhances ease and gracefulness, while encouraging us to be uninhibited, radiant and willing to shine shamelessly.
Wild Pansy enhances our ability to metaphorically ‘strip naked’, while experiencing a self-acceptance that allows us to feel comfortable enough to show parts of ourselves that we typically are not used to sharing.
Note: this flower essence is also particularly beneficial for children!
Magnifies: Grace, ease, radiance; ability to shine + feel supported; shining from inside out; coming out of your shell; flourishing
Dissolves: Feeling awkward; shyness, shame; social unease; inhibited; hiding from others or even oneself
The time has passed to experience Wild Pansy as part of the Flowerevolution ...
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Love + flower petals,
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