Peppermint Oil and The Phosphorescent Personality
Copyright 2017 by Joseph Ben Hil-Meyer Research, Inc.
By Bruce Berkowsky, N.M.D., M.H., H.M.C.
Special Note: Learn more about
Dr. Berkowsky's webinar-based
2015 Spiritual PhytoEssencing Training Intensive
Archetypes and Archetypal Images
are living organisms and all living things, plant and animal, are ensouled.
Accordingly, the essential oil is the carrier of the most concentrated portion
of the plant's soul essence. In this reference, anthroposophy founder Rudolf
Steiner states: "Matter is most spiritual in the perfume of the plant. When
the spirit most closely approaches the physical earth, then we have the
perception of fragrance."
"I" is the unique, immortal aspect of the soul which journeys through the cycle
of birth, death, and rebirth. It carries with it the "DNA" of past life
qualities and brings them to the portal of rebirth where it picks up new ones.
The "I" is core of being. It is that which is aware. Its full
assertion is required for the potential to achieve wholeness of being via
engagement in soul-to-soul relationships with people, animals, plants,
essential oils and all the other inspirited elements of the natural universe.
the journey through the cycle of birth, death and rebirth, as well as through
genetic transfer and the constitutional adaptations that take place as we stray
from the realm of the true self into the arena of the manufactured survival
personality, the "I" acquires, or activates, a unique collection of archetypal
Spiritual PhytoEssencing, the term archetype refers to a unique
intangible construct of the soul that generates a pattern of characteristic
potentials which, when activated, manifest during a person's lifetime as
physical and psychospiritual qualities and propensities. Archetypes are
non-material and cannot be accessed by ordinary consciousness. Essentially,
they are spirit-world forms which generate tangible substances and expressions
in living beings.
particular identifiable patterns of emotions and physical predispositions can
be viewed as outward expressions of these underlying soul archetypal
components. In other words, these outward expressions are "archetypal images"
of specific underlying archetypes which, like an atom's electrons, have come to
orbit around the nucleus of the "I."
plants and animals contain a broad spectrum of minerals which are not only
fundamental components of the fabric of their tissues, but are also essential
for the operations of all their physiological functions. The various mineral
components of both plants and humans, such as calcium, magnesium, phosphorous,
etc., also serve as soul-level archetypes that generate characteristic archetypal
archetypal mode (a type of archetypal image projected by an underlying
soul archetype) is a specific combination of perceptual filters employed by the
ego (the outermost part of the self-structure that engages with the world and,
in most people, dominates everyday consciousness),which determines the specific
psychosocial role that the ego then activates in relation to particular
everyday experiences. Archetypal modes are essentially a combination of
behavioral and reactional tendencies.
same minerals play a major role in a plant's behavior (e.g., growth and
reproductive patterns; relations with other plant species and insects), and the
psychospiritual properties of its essential oil.
Peppermint and the Phosphorus Archetype
a phosphorus-rich herb, has a strong relationship with the phosphorus archetype.
While peppermint is a good source of other minerals as well (e.g., magnesium),
its phosphorous content exerts a uniquely powerful influence upon its
found in every cell, is the second most abundant mineral in the body (calcium
is the most abundant). Phosphorus is involved in every biochemical reaction;
and in many of these, it works in tandem with calcium. The bones contain a
higher proportion of calcium than phosphorus, but the opposite is true of the
soft tissues. The proper balance of calcium: phosphorus is required for the
effective operation of both of these minerals in the body. Phosphorus is also
required for normal skeletal development, kidney functioning and nerve-impulse
transmission. Phospholipids (e.g., lecithin) are required for:
efficient nerve and mental activity; transport and utilization of fats;
maintenance of acid: alkaline balance; and glandular secretion of hormones.
name phosphorus is derived from a Greek word meaning bearer of light.
From the anthroposophical perspective (anthroposophy is a system of natural and
spiritual science founded at the end of the19th century by Rudolf Steiner),
phosphorus, relative to the human organism, is literally a bearer of light. The
luminosity of white phosphorus, which actually glows in the dark, can be
ignited merely through contact with air. However, it's very unstable and turns
from white to yellow to red when exposed to light. By virtue of this low
threshold of activation, phosphorus is very reactive and combines easily with
other elements. This ease of combination helps to explain the phosphorus individual's
easy sociability and attractiveness to potential partners.
is the bearer of both light and spirit in that light has a spiritual nature and
is thus closely related to the higher soul. In the Kabbalah, light is
frequently used as a metaphor for the emanations of the Infinite which are
sometimes referred to as the Or Ein Sof, or the Infinite Light.
the homeopathic perspective, the theme of communication is the essence of
phosphorus. Accordingly, the phosphorus type is very open to the exchange
of thoughts and feelings, sometimes to the point of experiencing blurring of
identity. The phosphorus individual has a strong desire for company, wants to
hear the ideas of others and have her own heard as well. Ultimately, however,
as she gets older and life has taken its toll on her nervous system, this type
becomes depleted by company and may become indifferent to acquaintances and the
endless stream of family dramas.
penchant for open communication renders the phosphorus type very sympathetic.
In fact, being sympathetic is one of the keynote qualities of phosphorus. Given
the instability of phosphorus, this expression of sympathy is unstable and
tends to shift from one person to another as new situations arise. This same
phenomenon is characteristic of the phosphorus type's fear of disease.
Typically, she's easily frightened by the prospect of disease, and upon reading
about the symptoms of one disease or another, is prone to suspecting that she
is suffering from the disease in question. However, she is readily reassured by
a doctor's assessment to the contrary only to imagine she is suffering from
another disorder as soon as he hears, or reads about, the details of it.
phosphorus type is very friendly, communication flows naturally from her and she
may consider someone a friend even though she has just met that person. This,
of course, makes her particularly vulnerable to disappointment and
victimization. The phosphorus type may also be subject to homesickness. It's
not so much that she misses a place, but rather, the contact with neighbors and
friends with whom she shares open, comforting communications. Similarly, when she
breaks up with a love interest, she is despondent, not so much because of the
loss of romantic passion as of the loss of the ongoing communication
established through intimacy and continual contact.
theme of communication also underlies the phosphorus type's tendency to learn
primarily through language via talking, listening, reading and writing. Thus,
in the failed state of phosphorus, many of the symptoms experienced, such as
mental exhaustion, confusion, indifference, lightheadedness, etc., are
associated with a breakdown in the ability to think or learn through these
phosphorus type has a strong desire to experience new things, to discover and
acquire knowledge and insight. Hence, when young and healthy, there is a desire
to travel so as to experience different cultures, and ultimately, to
communicate with different, interesting people from whom one can learn and
grow. On the other hand, if interesting people and experiences are not readily
available, the phosphorus type will become quickly bored with a trip and fall
into a complaining, irascible temper.
penchant for travel is a derivative of the phosphorus type's constitutional
nervous restlessness. There is a continuous need to grow, experience and
communicate, and if these are inhibited, the phosphorus type is readily
disenchanted, edgy and agitated by a steady diet of the ordinary. Hence, she is
subject to restless thoughts and elaborate fantasies. She has a fertile
imagination which works for her in her creative undertakings, but also, serves
to make her subject to fears and trepidations, most prominently concerning
disease and death. The phosphorus type is jumpy, easily startled from sleep and
may have a diverse portfolio of fears, including fear of being alone, of the
dark, of thunder, and of what the future might bring.
has been my experience that individuals who have an affinity for the
homeopathic remedy Phosphorus -- prepared from a saturated solution of
phosphorus -- commonly have a similarly strong, constitutional affinity for
peppermint oil. In other words, many of the qualities and reactional tendencies
associated with the phosphorus type are similarly associated with those who
have a deep constitutional affinity for peppermint oil.
is not to say that peppermint oil is a substitute in clinical practice for the
remedy Phosphorus, and vice versa. Instead, they act synergistically,
and for our purposes, this relationship enables us to use relevant portions of
the Phosphorus picture to more fully elaborate our understanding of the
this reference, the following Phosphorus qualities and symptoms are
important: too open, bright,
excitable; quick perception; impressionable; sensitive to all external
impressions; suggestible; startles easily; full of fears and anxieties;
anxious; anxious when alone; fear of: death, disease, the dark,
ghosts, robbers, insects, the future (that something bad will happen);
gullible; affectionate, returns affection; sympathetic; clairvoyant [out of
body experiences); desires to be magnetized (i.e., to be emotionally inspired
and spiritually vitalized); spacey; easily distracted; apathetic; apathy
alternating with anger; great irascibility; easily vexed, which makes him
exceedingly vehement, for which he suffers as a result; misanthropy; great flow
of incongruous ideas; melancholy; sadness; disgust for life; mental exhaustion;
worse when alone; falls asleep late; excitability keeps him awake at night;
complaints prevent sleep; talks in sleep; unrefreshing sleep; frequent waking
with difficulty falling asleep again; starts with fright from sleep; anxious,
distressing, lascivious, frightful or horrible dreams; (The peppermint type
may either be a good or a poor sleeper, or experience an alternating pattern of
periods of deep-sleep interspersed with periods of poor-sleep and insomnia.);
debility and exhausted states; always tired, always wants to rest; generally
chilly but may be warm-blooded [I have found that the peppermint type has a
type of body temperature instability in that he is generally chilly but is
prone to rapid overheating); great sensitivity to odors; chemical
sensitivity; quickly prostrated by unpleasant impressions.
following qualities and symptoms from the composite peppermint oil picture
(elaborated in the Peppermint Oil chapter in
Berkowsky's Synthesis Materia Medica/Spiritualis of Essential Oilsfrom
peppermint's plant characteristics, folkloric
associations, herbal medicine uses and the symptom pictures of the homeopathic
remedies Mentha piperita and Menthol) are relevant in reference
to the Phosphorus symptom picture: strengthens the nerves, digestion
and the heart muscles; exerts a sedative action which makes it suitable in
cases of digestive debility, fever, fatigue, etc. which are accompanied by
nervousness, restlessness and/or insomnia; anger; depression; hysteria; insanity;
low self-esteem; intolerance; mental fatigue; poor concentration; enervation;
racing thoughts; nervous trembling; eager to work; dispatches work quickly;
confusion; insomnia; vertigo; neuralgia; chilliness; dizzy spells accompanied
by chilliness and pallid complexion; weakness of the nerves and
exhaustion caused by protracted illness; lymphatic congestion and stagnation;
of the main feelings of Phosphorus is the perception that she is unloved
and insufficiently cared for. In general, the Phosphorus type will
compensate for this perception by being affectionate and compassionate in the
hope that this will elicit a reciprocal display of caring and affection. One
of the most important keynotes of Phosphorus is that she has a coequal desire
to give and receive love.
Phosphorus type is very sensitive not only to others and their needs but
to all environmental and other external (e.g., those around them, accounts of
human suffering, bad news, etc.) influences as well. She is very emotional,
reactive and animated, and tends to attract attention toward herself either because
of her sympathetic- or lively personality. The Phosphorus woman is
likely to be a stylish dresser, graceful and have natural charm. Yet, the
liveliness and gracious friendliness often veil an underlying feeling of
deprivation regarding the receipt of love and affection. In turn, this feeling
can give rise to chronic irascibility, easy vexation, melancholy and feelings
Phosphorus child who does not receive adequate attention and caring at
home is likely to compensate by making a lot of friends outside the home, being
popular in school, etc. However, these relationships tend to lack substance and
intimacy, because she's closely guarded about the inadequacies of her family relationships
as this is a source of hurt and shame.
lively animation of Phosphorus also fuels her darker emotions, such as
restlessness, anger, anxiety, fearfulness and hypersensitivity. When she's
young, her characteristic restlessness may manifest as a strong desire for
company—a need to get out of the home where she feels isolated and
unappreciated. As she gets older and her hypersensitivity and gullibility have
taken their toll, she can become exhausted, debilitated, and haggard-looking,
and crave shelter form the storm, even to the point of becoming somewhat
central theme of Phosphorus involves a lack of personal boundaries. Her
hypersensitivity, empathy and impressionability encourage her to experience the
world with the innocence and vibrant immediacy of a young child. She may have a
perceptible child-like quality, or she may feel -- regardless of her age --
that she has still not achieved emotional maturity. Her mind/body boundaries
are readily breached by both pleasant and unpleasant impressions.
gifted with quick perception and clairvoyance, she is prone to mistaking
wishful thinking for true intuition and to be led astray by this error. Hence,
her intuition is not consistently reliable because it's likely to be distorted
by a swirling palette of emotions and imaginings. The innocent and trusting
nature of Phosphorus can get her into all manner of uncomfortable
situations. In fact, one will commonly find the Phosphorus type's
history to be checkered with mishaps and narrowly-avoided disasters. The Phosphorus
type is both a "cockeyed optimist" and an apprehensive alarmist. She is quick
to jump to conclusions based upon scanty or circumstantial evidence and
interpret the facts of a situation through the prism of her own subjective
experiences, fears and fervent desires.
Phosphorus type tends to be more right-brained, and so, more artistic
than logical. In fact, many Phosphorus individuals are gifted artists.
As she gets older, her journey through life is likely to produce very complex
familial and relationship dynamics that generate almost desperate escapist
longings. Her exhaustion and debilitation strip her of staying-power. She has
little stamina for the long-haul through life's relentless gauntlet as she's
designed more for the sprint (much like the cheetah) than the long-distance,
impressionability of Phosphorus makes her susceptible to incorporation
of a partner's identity into her own. This weak sense of identity makes her
prone to anxiety, especially when she's under pressure or excited, or finds
herself in unfamiliar surroundings. Lacking boundaries, she needs someone to
"watch over her" and reassure her. Thus, she may be fearful when alone.
Peppermint and the Phosphorus Archetype
to the highly influential phosphorus archetype within peppermint oil, the
preceding discussion of the Phosphorus type is equally relevant for the
peppermint oil individual.
plant characteristics and mythological associations of mint provide some
profound correlations between peppermint and phosphorus: Mints are rampant
growers that can quickly overwhelm other plants. This is why mints are often
planted in cans to prevent their roots from spreading. The different mint
species crossbreed spontaneously when planted near one another. These
particular signatures correlate with the vivacious, gregarious nature of
to Greek mythology, when Persephone discovered that her husband Pluto (also
known as Hades, the god of the underworld) was in love with Minthe, a beautiful
nymph who lived with Pluto in his underground kingdom, she burned with jealousy
and trod her into the ground, changing Minthe into a lowly plant. This
corresponds to the Phosphorus feeling of being insufficiently loved and
the Phosphorus symptoms: great irascibility; easily vexed, which
makes him exceedingly vehement, for which he suffers as a result. The Phosphorus
type is a genuinely decent and sympathetic person, but when crossed, his
anger will flare up like a lightning strike and be frightening to behold.
could not reverse the effect of Persephone's spell, but, fueled by a rare
display of compassion, he was able to modify it somewhat by imbuing the plant
with the property of producing a scent which became progressively sweeter the
more it was tread upon. In this, we see two Phosphorus keynotes. First,
it is indeed unusual that Pluto, the god of the underworld, will experience
profound sympathy (one of the leading qualities of Phosphorus). In this
instance, he's moved to compassion by a mint plant. Secondly, the mint quality
of emitting a scent, which becomes progressively sweeter in direct proportion
to the amount of times it's tread upon, brings to mind the fact that the Phosphorus
type will compensate for feeling unloved and insufficiently cared for by being
affectionate and compassionate in the hope that this will elicit a reciprocal
display of caring and affection. In other words, when "tread upon" in this
manner, the Phosphorus type will react by becoming even sweeter. This
penchant for open communication renders the phosphorus type very sympathetic.
In fact, being sympathetic is one of the keynote qualities of phosphorus.
phosphorus type is very friendly, communication flows naturally from him and he
may consider someone a friend even though he has just met him. The phosphorus
type has a strong desire to experience new things, to discover and acquire
knowledge and insight. The peppermint oil individual has a highly empathetic
nature and is readily moved to tears by news reports of human and animal
hold that Mentha derives from the Latin word mente, meaning
"thought." The Roman scholar Pliny considered peppermint to be the loveliest of
herbs, and remarked: "The very smell of it reanimates the spirit." Relevant
in this reference is the fact that phosphorus is required for normal skeletal
development and that Rudolf Steiner considered the skeletal system to be the
material image of the organization of the higher soul. Also, as previously
noted, phosphorus is required for nerve impulse transmission, and phospholipids
(e.g., lecithin) are required for efficient nerve and mental activity.
Additionally, phosphorus, a bearer of both light and spirit, the process of soul-embodiment,
or, as Kabbalists would describe it, the "descent of the soul into matter."
most of the leading archetypal potentials and modes of Phosphorus are
reflected in the peppermint oil individual, the blenders' observation of these
potentials and modes in a given case should help guide them to the selection of
peppermint oil as a constitutional, or deep soul-level, healing agent.
the various symptoms in aromatherapy's peppermint oil symptom-picture can be
more completely viewed as products of a failed state, involving issues related
to the phosphorous themes of: interpersonal communication, empathy,
vulnerability, hypersensitivity, impressionability, etc.
instance, in aromatherapy, peppermint oil is considered to be potentially
useful for the treatment of the following symptoms and conditions: anger;
depression; hysteria; egotism; low self-esteem; intolerance; mental fatigue;
poor concentration; enervation; racing thoughts; nervous trembling; insomnia;
shock; paralysis; vertigo; dizziness; fainting; weakness of the nerves and
exhaustion caused by protracted illness; laryngitis; heart weakness; heart
palpitations; asthma; breast congestion; excessive milk-flow, and constipation
(especially when related to, or exacerbated by, emotional blockage).
we view these symptoms (and many of the others found in the aromatherapy symptom-picture)
through the prism of the phosphorus archetype, we can more clearly understand the
inner nature of the person presenting with them. In this way, the effects of
using peppermint oil can extend beyond superficial symptomatic amelioration to
deep soul-level healing.
Written by Dr. Bruce Berkowsky, N.M.D., M.H., H.M.C.
Dr. Berkowsky teaches in-depth seminars/teleseminars/workshops to health-conscious,
spiritually aware individuals.
Dr. Berkowsky, a
registered naturopath, master herbalist and classical homeopath—is President
of Joseph Ben Hil-Meyer Research, Inc. He is the founder/teacher of the art of
Spiritual PhytoEssencing as well as the Natural Health Science System (which he
designed following many years of research and clinical practice, and includes
herbology, nutrition, homeopathy, aromatherapy, exercise, traditional nature-cure
as well as East/West healing arts/bodywork).
If you are
interested in studying with Dr. Berkowsky and would like a free recording
wherein he discusses the theoretical foundation of Spiritual PhytoEssencing,
e-mail your request for the recording link.
Disclaimer: This publication is intended as an
educational tool, and not as a prescription. Seek the advice of your health-care
provider before discontinuing any medication and/or trying any new remedy or technique.