Ever since Dr Bach wrote it, The Twelve Healers and Other Remedies has always been the most important book on the remedies. At the Bach Centre we have always seen it as a working text – not a historical document, but a manual that everyone can use. Every practitioner has a copy – and even now, we go back to the remedy descriptions in The Twelve Healers all the time. Every time we do, we get new insight into the system.
As a working text, The Twelve Healers has been added to and edited over the years to try to meet new needs as they arise. This is exactly what Dr Bach did during his lifetime – indeed, the first changes after 1936 were dictated by Dr Bach shortly before his death. Comparing our online 1936 facsimile edition and the 2009 Bach Centre ebook edition, for example, the main differences are:
- The 2010 version contains the longer introduction dictated by Dr Bach at the end of October, 1936 – after the 1936 edition had been published.
- A line of the Rock Rose description referring to it as ‘the rescue remedy’ has gone, to avoid confusing it with the well-known brand of the emergency mix.
- The list of chemists supplying remedies has gone. The number of shops supplying remedies has increased beyond the possibility of listing them in a book this size. (Prices have also inevitably increased.)
- The dosage instructions have been rewritten. They now mention how to choose remedies and their use with animals and plants, explain how to use the crisis mix and cream, and give a clearer account of the minimum daily dose.
- The 1936 instructions on how to make remedies have been removed. Dr Bach aimed this part of the book at people who were making remedies for personal use. To simplify the description he left out one of the dilution stages he followed when preparing remedies for pharmacies – and in practice most people struggled to identify the plants they needed to use from the Latin names alone. To provide practical and consistent help to remedy-makers, Nora Weeks and Victor Bullen instead wrote the book Illustrations and Preparations, which includes full descriptions and photos of the correct plants.
- Some of the Latin names of the plants have changed. They are the same plants! – but later editions reflect changes in the International Rules of Botanical Nomenclature.
And at the risk of adding to any confusion! – the 1941 edition is actually the main one to get. It has all the text of the 1936 edition, the last personally prepared for the press by Dr Bach, plus the longer introduction that he dictated at the end of his life and asked Nora Weeks to include in the next edition.