Honey Bee Harmony ~ Platbos Essence
Key Qualities: Inspires devotion, dedication and focus when working towards one’s heartfelt goals and objectives| Assists with perceiving the sweetness, beauty and perfection of Life As It Is| Elevates the spirit, and is an overall tonic to body, mind and soul | Promotes connection and camaraderie with others working towards a common goal and assists with finding creative, “out the box” solutions to entrenched, “stuck” problems – both mundane and profound| Supporting the joy of the creative process for its own sake – with neither attachment for financial reward, nor personal recognition.
Balances: Lack of focus, procrastination and despondency | Perfectionism | Creative blockages
Affirmation: I am infused with beauty, sweetness and goodness. My dedication and devotion to serving the Divine fills others with enthusiasm, inspiration and joy. Together we create harmony and abundance for All.
Supportive Essences: Spike Thorn, Sea Guarrie and Turquoise Colour Essence
See Also: HoneyBee Symphony Mist
I created this vibrational essence on the 22nd August 2021. Astrologically this was a significant day as it was a full moon in the sign of Aquarius.
The 22nd of August is my birthday and I have always felt a great affinity and affection towards honey bees. My name Melissa means “Honey Bee” in Greek, and like honey bees I take great delight in sweet smelling flowers. I had set the intention to make this essence on my birthday, prior to knowing the significance of the moon phases. At this time of year, the white stinkwood trees bud with their new spring leaves, and their tiny golden flowers appear simultaneously. Then the trees are literally buzzing with the sounds of the forest’s honey bees.
Creation of the Honey Bee Essence
I placed my essence bowl beneath a white stinkwood tree in full flower – it was a beautiful day, blue-skied with a gentle golden sun above. The buzzing of the bees filled the forest. After a long, wet winter, they were eager to get to work! I placed the essence glass in a gramophone made from oak wood – the latter being a surprise birthday gift for me. It is perfect that the gramophone was in the form of the hexagon – the same sacred geometric shape that bees use for their honeycomb. I rested these against the tree so that the subtle vibrations of the bees in the tree top could be transferred through the tree trunk, and then via the amplification of the wooden gramophone into the essence water.
Bees create their honeycomb in the form of the hexagon, we are told, because it is mathematically the most efficient shape to enclose space. The hexagon is also the geometric symbol for the number 6. A perfect number, it is a remarkably strong, stable and efficient. The hexagon is regular and repetitive and occurs mainly in inorganic nature: the growth of crystals, the cells of honeycomb and the orderly structure of the Universe.
The healing properties of honey, royal jelly and propolis are quite well known. The frequency of bees buzzing also holds healing: it produces a calming effect, relieving anxiety, stress and depression and it also boosts our immune system. These healing properties have been known since antiquity and were practiced in ancient Egypt: the humming sound of the bee was said to stimulate the release of super hormones known as the “Elixirs of Metamorphosis” and that the buzzing vibration resonates with, and stimulates various structures of the brain, including the pineal gland, pituitary gland, hypothalamus, and amygdala (*1)
Bees – and their golden honey – were held as sacred in ancient Egypt, and indeed, many other parts of the world. Jars of honey were left in tombs as offerings to the dead, and to sustain them in the afterlife. Old pots of honey have been found in tombs– two thousand years later – still perfectly preserved for honey never “goes off”.
The country Slovenia, in central Europe, has a long tradition of bee-keeping. Here they have special Bee Therapy rooms where people go to absorb the sounds of the buzzing bees, and the healing aromas that their hives hold. They have found them to be so effective that people in stressful jobs – police and fire-fighters for example – will routinely visit them after traumatic or stressful experiences. Platbos Forest has its own private Bee Room – the first of its kind in Africa we believe. After my Mother Essence had been energized in the sunshine, I placed the Mother Essence at the Bee Room overnight to absorb both the light and energy of the full moon and the humming of the bees as they fanned their wings to keep their hives at the correct temperature.
Fascinatingly, flowers also respond favourably to the sound of buzzing bees. Experiments have shown that if plants are exposed to playbacks of bee sounds, within three minutes of these recordings being played, sugar concentration in the plants increased from between 12 to 20 percent. This experiment shows a beautiful symbiosis between flowering plants and bees (bees need the nectar and the plants need the pollinators) – and it also shows that plants recognize or can feel / hear the vibrational frequencies of the buzzing bees. (*2)
Bees are important pollinators – along with many other insects: For instance, trees in the fig (Ficus) family each have their own unique wasp needed for their pollination (there are over 800 different types of these), and interestingly, the mosquito is one of the insect pollinators of our milkwood trees. So many insects – and mammals too – perform the task of pollination for the plant kingdom. What stands out for me about the honey bee is not only the service they do in preforming their pollination work, but how they work harmoniously together in the hive to create their marvellous golden honey. They are incredibly industrious and highly organized.
As an example of their orderliness, bees store nectar and pollens gathered from different flowers and trees separately, and in different areas, in their honeycomb. This is why their honeycomb will have different shades of honey in it. For instance, in one bank of honeycomb cells there will be honey from the flowers of milkwood trees; honey made from a white stinkwood will be stored in a separate part of the comb.
It is not entirely understood why they arrange the honeycomb in such a specific way, but it is thought that they do this so they can choose the different honey types as, and when, the hive requires it. It is a bit like us having a kitchen cupboard full of different food types. (* 3)
In order to ensure that things work efficiently and in an orderly fashion, the bees have a way to make sure that all of the worker bees are on the “same page” as to which flower-type to focus on, and harvest, each day. Honeybees have an excellent sense of smell to distinguish between the different perfumes of the different flowers in bloom. Should the honeybee visit a mixed patch of flowers, a special aroma signature is left by the scout bee to alert the workers as to which flower type has been chosen for the day. As we have seen, it’s important for the hive that everyone works in unison to ensure that the honeycomb is properly packed in a specific way.
The worker bees – who make up the greatest population in the hive – are all female and of course it’s their queen bee whom they all serve, along with attending to the pollination of so many of the flowers and fruiting plants that we love so much. They are wonderful examples for us of the creative powers of the Divine Feminine. Bees have been associated with the Goddess and the wilderness since ancient times. (A drone is a male honey bee. Unlike the female worker bee, drones do not have stingers. They gather neither nectar nor pollen and are unable to feed without assistance from worker bees. A drone’s only role is to mate with an unfertilized queen).
There are many legends from different cultures about Bee Deities. The Prophet Muhammad proclaimed for instance that the bee is the only creature to have spoken directly with God. There is the Hindu Bee Goddess named Bhrami – her name means Bee in Hindi. It was said that Bhrami resided in the heart chakra and emitted the buzzing sound of bees. This buzzing, humming sound was often imitated in Vedic chants and represented the essential sound of the Universe. The importance of bees to humanity through the ages is enormous – I have only touched very briefly on this prolific topic. Certainly, one could say that our love and respect for bees and honey is one of the common denominators which unites all of humanity.
Looking to Africa, and the myths of the San Bushmen, there is the following folklore which explains how the first humans came into being:
Creation of the first Bushmen
“As the Bushmen lived in a very dry area, water to them has a very magical power that could revive them. In the legend of creation, Mantis appears and the entire world is still covered by water. A bee (a symbol of wisdom) carries Mantis over the turbulent waters of the ocean. The bee, however, became very tired and flew lower and lower. She searched for solid land to make her descent to but she only grew more and more tired. But then she saw a flower drifting on the water. She laid Mantis down in the flower and within in him the seed of the first human. The bee drowned but when the sun came up, Mantis awoke and from the seed the bee had left, the first human was born. “(*4)
This fable suggests that humans contain the essence or blue print of both the honey bee and the mantis within us. The Bushmen connected bees and their honey with creation and potency, transformation, and the ability to reach states of trance. For them, it is said, that the praying mantis was viewed as a “superbeing”. “Mantis” is a Greek word meaning divine, or soothsayer. All over the world many legends speak of this magical creature. To the Bushmen however he is a “dream Bushman” and is very human-like. Many rock art paintings depict a Bushman with the head of a Mantis.
On a practical level, one can only imagine how our early ancestors treasured bees and honey. Before sugar cane and cultivated fruit and berries, here in Africa there would have been nothing remotely comparable to the intense sweetness of honey – as well as its medicinal, preservative and nutritional qualities.
The Bushmen and Khoe gathered wild honey as far back as 40,000 years ago – we know this from early cave paintings which depict both images of bees and Bushmen harvesting honey.
Platbos Forest is an important habitat for wild bee swarms that make their homes in the cavities of old tree trunks. Deep within the forest I have found old trees with charred and blackened tree trunks – I believe that these trees may have caught alight when people – both from more modern times but also possibly going back to the days that the Bushmen and Khoe lived in the surrounding caves – used fire and smoke to subdue the bees and accidentally set the trees on fire. Bees also make their nests in caves: three kilometres from Platbos are the Byneskranskop Caves (The Bee Nest Caves) – an important archaeological site. Neolithic human remains were discovered there and carbon dating of the remains indicate that they date from 3,000 to 2,000 years BCE. The Klipgat Caves – along the De Kelders coast line – (about 15 kilometres from Platbos) were occupied during the Middle and Later Stone Age from about 80 000 years ago to about 50 000 years ago. In these caves too, honey bees made their homes. Given the spiritual and practical importance of bees to our early ancestors, it does not surprise me that they lived harmoniously side by side. I also intuitively feel that the bees today take on a protective role of guarding these ancient, sacred sites.
Given that the San Bushmen are our oldest human ancestors, and that they had this strong affinity for bees and honey, it makes sense to me that they were the first people to discover Honey Mead (wine) – which is the world’s oldest alcoholic drink. According to legend, it is believed that the Bushmen discovered a naturally fermented drink in the cavities of old Baobab trees – made from honey that dripped into the water filled hollow and then was naturally fermented. This discovery likely inspired our early ancestors to duplicate this original “tree mead”. (*5)
Returning now to my creation of Honey Bee Essence: in the essence bowl water I placed a single jasmine flower (Jasminum officinale). This jasmine species is in the Oleaceae family – the wild olive and the fine ironwood trees of Platbos share this family. It is my favourite flower as I adore its sweet, happy fragrance – and of course bees love these flowers too. I had picked a sprig from my mother’s garden a few days before. The energetic properties that Jasmine hold are calming to the nervous system. And it has antidepressant qualities, is restorative and revitalizing and known as an aphrodisiac.
Beside the essence water, I placed two crystals: a large wand of Selenite and a Messina Ajoite Quartz Crystal. Selenite holds the following energetic qualities: it promotes peace and calm, provides clarity, clears blocked energy, elevates the spirit, helps to access one’s intuition, is an effective space cleanser, vibrates at a very high frequency, promotes connection and camaraderie and enhances powers of manifestation.
The metaphysical properties of the Messina Ajoite Quartz Crystals mark them as master healers and a medium for connecting with the higher worlds. They connect one with “All That Is”, radiating unconditional love, peace and joy. They teach us of the Divine and the connectedness of all beings.
During the creation of this essence, I also included the vibrations of the Perfect 5th Tuning Fork.
The perfect fifth is a general sound tonic. Some of the sound healing benefits of the fifth are: it alleviates depression and enhances joint mobility; it balances Earth with Spirit and is antibacterial and antiviral. It also balances the heart, pituitary gland and sphenoid bone and enhances the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system and the immune system. (*6) These properties echo the beneficial effects of the humming sounds of bees that I mentioned before about Bee healing in Ancient Egypt. The perfect fifth is also connected to the Element of Air.
The Element of Air is associated with the heart chakra. Breathing is vital for life – we can only survive without air for roughly 3 minutes. Air connects us to ourselves – by focusing on our breath we get in touch with our emotions and any disharmony within our bodies. It also connects us to others. The 2020 pandemic served as a powerful example of this. One of the most important lessons of this time period is that it highlighted, in a very tangible way, how we are all connected, no matter where on the earth we find ourselves. Collectively we shared very similar challenges, insights and emotions. The primary lesson for me was that meaningful human connection is vital for our wellbeing.
Through breath work, we can transform negative energy to positive. And of course, the breath is intrinsic to the sacred relationship of reciprocity that we share with the natural forests of the world that are seen as the green lungs of the earth. Air is also associated with the energy of our thoughts – our “Mental Body”. Ways to work with this element, and which the HoneyBee essence supports, include breathe work, mindfulness, singing, meditation and prayer.
A supportive tree essence for the HoneyBee essence is the Spike Thorn Tree of Loving Kindness which is also connected, via the heart chakra, to the element of air. In addition, the Sea Guarrie – Tree of Inspiration – will be a beautiful essence to work with as well as the Turquoise Essence.
Sea Guarrie’s vibration corresponds with the “higher heart chakra”- the Ananda-Khanda Centre – which is physically linked to the Thymus gland – an intrinsic part of our immune system. Bees particularly love the sweet, spicy flowers of this small tree, and the colour I associate with Sea Guarrie is turquoise. There is another interesting correspondence for me between the colour turquoise and honey bees.
I have synaesthesia – a perceptual phenomenon whereby stimulation of one sensory pathway leads to a simultaneous experience in a second sensory pathway (*7). I experience sound sometimes as a colour, as well as a physical sensation. The beautiful singing of a sunbird for example – I experience it as exhilarating to my energy field, and also as a taste and colour: sweet zingy, lemon juice with a feeling of cracking, luminous pale-blue ice, in combination with light, yellowy sunshine illuminating my crown chakra. It is a very joyful, pure and invigorating experience to hear sunbirds singing in the Platbos trees.
Getting back to the bees. Once a bee stung me accidentally – I had saved her on my finger tip as she was trapped against a window pane, struggling to get outside, and during this process unfortunately I got stung. Perhaps it is unusual, but I have a habit of smelling things as part of my way of navigating the world. The scent left on my finger after the sting was very distinctive and surprising: it was fruity, spicy and sweet (contrary to the pain of the sting that caused my finger to swell and go red!) – and the colour I saw with the scent of the sting was a very vibrant turquoise. Bee Venom Therapy is a whole other field in itself, but essentially it has been found to assist with boosting the immune and for the treatment of inflammatory diseases. Again – interesting correspondences with the Thymus gland, the higher heart, bees and the Sea Guarrie tree!
In closing, it is also important to mention here a concept known as “The Hive Mind” – inspired of course by our friends the Honey Bees: “the concept of a hive mind is something found in nature, a means by which the many come together to create something better than the sum of its parts. Studies have already shown that we are better at predicting pretty much everything when we think as a group. Imagine the problems we could solve if everyone in the world could collaborate on solutions just by putting our minds together” (*8). This concept too then– the power of collective co-creation – is also held within the HoneyBee essence.