I recently took on the care of 2 mares, their babies and a 3 year old filly. I already had a herd of 3 geldings, a mare and a 3 year old filly. Although this group was also newly formed.
My horses live in a style that is as close to natural as domestication can get, roaming freely on 30 scrubby hectares in Portugal. I needed the herds to share the space in harmony.
It has been an intense week as I manage the situation – guided by nature, but at the same time holding the responsibility to keep everyone safe and sound. After a week to allow them to become familiar with each other, I took the fence down. There have been a few bite and kick marks as they sort things out, but nothing serious.
It’s not settled yet however, mainly because one of the geldings keeps trying to build his own band of mares. None of the mares really wants to stay with him though because he’s a bit of a bully. He hasn’t understood that mares will stay with the one who makes them feel safe. Bullying usually comes from a lack of confidence in my experience.
Amal has never been a leader to the best of my knowledge. He has enough testosterone to have the drive for it but doesn’t have the skill, so has a slightly worried look and raised adrenalin levels, making him even more over-reactive. So I decided to offer him some essential oils.
Jasmine absolute (Jasminum officinale) is perfect for this situation and he inhaled it deeply when offered. I also offered Lemon (Citrus limonum) distilled essential oil. Lemon helps clear the mind and assimilate new information, balances adrenal function, builds trust in oneself and others. He had moderate interest in the Lemon.
Now, as I watch from my window Amal is standing quietly with the 3 year old from the new herd and another gelding. In the gully below, the rest of the herd naps peacefully under a tree, with one foal flat out on the ground in the middle. Result.
Element: Fire (Water)
History and Character
The star-shaped, waxy jasmine flower grows on an evergreen vine or shrub. It is native to China, northern India and west Asia and there are many varieties. The fragrance of jasmine is considered to be one of the most sensually evocative and is strongest after dark and just before dawn, which is when the flowers are harvested for oil production. Because the flowers are so delicate they must be harvested by hand, yielding only a little essential oil which is hard to extract apart from as an absolute. For this reason jasmine is an expensive item, but is indispensable in its role as a Yang balancer. Traditionally jasmine was known as a fertility herb and has been used as an aphrodisiac and to facilitate birth. It is a warming, euphoric oil that instils optimism, eases nervous anxiety, and soothes restlessness. In aromatherapy, it is known as ‘King of oils’ as, despite its sweet, floral top-note, it has a particular affinity with male hormonal and excess Yang behaviours, especially for males who act ‘macho’ to hide insecurity.
Jasmin, Jessamine, Common Jasmine.
Extraction and Characteristics
Jasmine is usually found as an absolute, from solvent extracted concrete. An essential oil is sometimes made by steam distillation of the absolute. The absolute is a thick orangey liquid.
An intensely sweet, floral top-note with a musky bottom-note.
Esters: benzyl acetate, benzyl benzoate, phytyl acetate, methyl linoleate, methyl jasmonate
Alcohols: linalol, phytol, isophytol, geraniol, benzyl alcohol
Analgesic, antidepressant, calmative, carminative, cicatrisant, emollient, sexual tonic, uterine tonic.
Generally held to be non-toxic, non-irritant and non-sensitising. Allergic reactions have been seen in some individuals. It is sometimes contaminated with the solvent hexane, used to separate the absolute from the concrete.
- Sexual anxiety
- Nervous anxiety
- Excess ‘Yang’ behaviour
- Pushy ‘take control’ types
Think ‘Jasmine’ for:
Bullying or other hierarchy issues, especially if the animal has been left in a position of responsibility that it does not feel up to, and is nervous when separated from others.
Animals who want to take charge in a forceful manner because they are actually insecure.