Which are the type remedies?

In his earliest writings on flower remedies Dr Bach theorised that there were a set number of fundamental types of people. The actual number varied, but from 1932 to 1935 he mainly referred to the first twelve remedies – the twelve healers – as the “primary types of personalities”, and associated each with particular failings and qualities.

During this same period, however, he found other remedies that had type-like characteristics. In 1933, for example, he found remedies for “types of people [… whose] abnormal state is regarded by themselves and others as part of their character” – what we might call “false types”.

Later, in 1935, he referred to the final 19 remedies as developing our “inner great self” – so here too there was something fundamental about the action of at least some of these remedies, something that went deeper than simply treating a mood.

In the year following his discovery of the final remedy, Dr Bach looked at the best way to group the remedies together. At first he tried to keep to the idea that the first twelve were fundamental – but in the end he abandoned this in favour of a simpler approach to classification, using seven headings: remedies for fear, remedies for uncertainty, and so on.

He gave equal importance to all the remedies in the final system. Aside from the asterisks in The Twelve Healers and Other Remedies (which were added by the publishers, not by Dr Bach) there isn’t any way to tell the first twelve from the others.

In some of his remedy descriptions – including descriptions of many later remedies – he included personality traits. Of the first twelve remedies, he described Rock Rose as a crisis remedy that could apply to anybody – a classic mood remedy.

There is no fixed list of type remedies in the final system, and the “type remedies” are simply those that could be interpreted as defining a characteristic rather than a passing mood.