Aromatherapy ~ a wonderful practical modality that utilizes essential plant extracts for medicinal purposes and as MUCH as I appreciate this aspect, there is an entirely different side to this science that I believe bears talking about and that is the wide effects Aromatherapy has on our emotional and spiritual body.
All too many times, I've burned a candle, put on a fragrance, or purchased a product with a particular aroma just because. I was not looking to correct a physical ailment or for that matter, was I even feeling badly, I just had this craving, if you will, to smell something in particular. What was this attraction? Was it anything more than pleasure? Well, my initial sense led me to see how the desire for a certain scent was / is very similar to that of a food craving.
We all have them; those gnawing desires to eat a specific type of food. Take for example, potato chips. I hear this one a lot, 'boy, I could go for some chips right now.' Are we really craving junk food OR are we wanting a certain component in the chip ie the potato or the salt? Who's to say; the trick is to be aware that our body is asking to be fed. Whatever you choose to eat chips is up to you; however, knowing you have this level of connection with your body is fundamental when it comes to honoring it. The same is true for fragrances, and why Aromatherapy warrants consideration when it comes to wellness; it's a dynamic way of caring for the body. Maybe your aromatic craving is to fend off an illness; maybe you're stressed and looking to calm down on a defect level (we are quite good at hiding our feelings even from ourselves); Egypt, quite possibly, your soul is hungry. The task is not to try and figure it out; it's simply to respect the desire for a particular fragrance.
Now, your source for a fragrance is crucial, much like the potato chip; going for synthetic or perfume grade essential oil will only partially feed you emotionally and spiritually, which extremely leaves you with feeling dissatisfied. Let me give you an example ~ have you ever finished a meal and felt like you wanted more to eat even though you were full. Yeah, it's like that.
Consider this: I have an older client with chemo-induced neuropathy, and this woman loves Jasmine. When I first met her, she was taking Neurontin for her condition. I visited with her for a while and quickly came up with a recommended blend with her help. You see, she gave me the primary oil ~ Jasmine. Not using this essential oil would have been a disservice to her. She loved the blend then, and consistently calls me every two months for a new supply. What's even more spectacular is she no longer needs the Neurontin. Could she have cleared up the discomfort with just the Jasmine? Knowing what I know, no. However, just using that essential oil would have made a difference for her and that's the beauty of this science.
With this said, there are times when the support of a professional is desirable because they will pick up on 'things' that we do not. It's important to keep in mind, as human beings we have our blind spots, so having someone else assist us with formulating a blend for our specific 'needs' is valuable; yet, in the meantime, knowing what we're drawn to is a fabulous start. There's definitely more to Aromatherapy than meets the eye or nose.