I lived in the South of France for a few years not far from the village of Grasse, which is famous for distilling the finest essential oils. You can drive through the villages in the area and you can see old copper stills on display. These stills have been used for hundreds of years to extract the essential oils from flowers. Copper is used because it hinders the growth of bacteria both in the essential oils and the by product of floral waters. Copper is the metal of the planet Venus. Venus the Goddess of Love rules the heart. This process of distilling the essence of flowers inspired me in my process of finding my own heart essence.
During this time when I lived in France I was experiencing old emotional patterns returning into my life that needed to be cleared. Rather then repressing my feeling I began to learn to go directly to the emotional pain which usually was found and felt in my belly. I let myself get in touch with that wounded part of myself, by deeply listening to what was really bothering me.
I first connect with my emotional pattern that needed my attention. This usually comes as an uncomfortable feeling in my belly. It can be a difficult to bring one’s awareness to the belly because it is usually an issue that causes pain. But allowing myself to stay with the feeling has a great secret.
I feel that this compares to the distilling process of essential oils that is done in the South France. The copper still has a big vat, which is where they place the plant material, such as rose flowers, mixed with water. The water represents the emotions. The vat represents the belly and the plant material could be compared to the different experiences that have happened in one’s life that are now ready to harvest and become just the essence.
Once I have contacted my emotional feeling in my belly I then take a inhalation and then a deep exhalation and with each breath in and each deep breath out I bring the emotional feeling into my heart center, which is located in the center of the chest. I do this without resisting what I may be feeling. This will take several breathes for me to bring the hidden emotions in my belly to the center of my heart.
This part of the process I compare to the fire under the copper still. The vat of the still is where the water and the plant material are held. When the flower water is heated it can be compared to the difficult life experiences that are brought to the boiling point in life’s process.
I inhale once again and I allow my heart to expand with each breath. I let the breath guide me deeper into my heart center beyond my emotional pain I may be experiencing. Negative emotions and feelings make the body and heart contract. This contraction is like walls on the outer layers of the heart. These walls are put up so life and love can not be experienced fully. The breath can allow me to go beyond the barriers of pain and fear that are found in the my emotions.
I try to allow myself with each breath to soften and become vulnerable to what my feelings are. I go deeper and deeper into the heart center, softening, listening and allowing what is there just to be . At this point I find many old memories hurts and unresolved emotions will be flying through the inner chambers of my heart….but I stay with my breath and deepen into my process. If I can do this without resistant, I come to a small still point in the center of the heart . I compare this to coiled tube on the copper still.
Making essential oils you heat the plant material in water. This creates stream that is carried though the copper tubing. This steam also carries with it the delicate aromatic essence of the plant. I compare this to bringing the emotion with the help of the breath into the small still point inside the heart. I take the next inhalation and exhalation allow the emotional pattern to be distilled into the spaciousness of the still point. This is the time when the breath goes beyond the emotional thought form held in the pain body and it begins to dissolve. I call this part of the process steaming off the emotions for transformation. It is through the cooling process that flora water and essential oils are made. It is also through the cooling process and witnessing my emotions rather then reacting I can come to the still point and touch my own essence.
A link to: Distilling
The deepening of the breath, coming to the still point, the acceptance, allowing, and soften of the heart brings me to the spacious heart, which can be experienced as the “Essence of Beingness”. When we come from our Beingness we can create a different viewing point that creates positive emotional experiences. The good emotions can be compared to a good floral water and your Beingness can be compared to the best essential oil.
This releasing of the old emotional patterns brings one to the point that only the essence of yourself remains. Old beliefs systems about yourself can fall away. Projections you have carried since childhood can be liberated in the natural essence of who you truly are. This process I feel could take a lifetime to master and I am in the process
This is a quote I found after writing this blog. It is from Ean Begg’s book “The Cult of the Black Virgin”
“In Egyptian paintings of the Dead are swallowed by a viper to be reborn in the form of a scarab from it’s tail. The viper thus plays the role of the transformaing alembic in alchemy. In whisky-distilling the indispensable copper condesnsing-pipe of Isis and Venus is known as the worm, which is also the old English for dragon or great serpent. The wouivere (viper) is the telluric current, perhaps an underground stream a geolociacal fault, a vein of metal or a ley-line–a prehistoric track joingin two prominet points in the landscape. It is generally invisable but can be detected by sensitives or dowers. It is the flow of our own life-current and the energy of the cosmos. Often the Black Virgin marks the stie of wouiver.” unquote.
The copper tubing is the same on a whisky-distilling as an essential oil still. The telluric current is known as Ley-lines in the West.