Protection

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  • Ruler: Sun
  • Magickal form: Incense, fresh sprigs, berries, essential oil
  • Basic Powers: Protection, Love, Healing, Cleansing
  • Cautions: Do not drink the tea if you are pregnant, wish to become pregnant, or if you have kidney disease.

In the past, Juniper was regarded as a magick shrub to use against devils, evil spirits, and wild animals. It is mentioned in the Bible as a symbol of protection. Its aromatic scent made it a popular strewing herb, and shoots were burned to disinfect the air in a room.

Brew the berries into a tea and drink it to increase sexual stamina. Crush dried berries to release their scent and add to love potions to attract a man. String the matured berries for an attractive charm designed to attract lovers.

Juniper berries can be used in love spells, particularly to enhance male interest and potency. Steep in wine and drink a few sips daily to increase male virility. Steep in vinegar and add it to your bath to make yourself more attractive to men or apply it directly to the genitals (diluted with water) to increase male interest in them. Or add it to a bath you’re sharing. Juniper berries and their essential oils make for a nice “masculine” scent for men’s cosmetics (aftershave, beard oil, etc.). Use with due caution.

Hang a sprig of fresh Juniper in the home to drive away evil. A sprig of Juniper will protect the wearer from accidents. Sometimes used in anti-theft sachets, as it guards against thieves. Grow Juniper at your doorstep for protection. Gin (which is made from Juniper) can be sprinkled across a threshold to guard against theft.

Juniper is a thief catcher. If you bend a young Juniper branch down to the ground and hold it where you place it with two weights, one a big stone, the other the skull of a murderer, and say, “Juniper, I bend and squeeze you till the thief (name him) returns what he has taken to its place,” the culprit will feel an unaccountable impulse to return the property.’

Brush down the body with a bundle of sprigs to remove illness and place drops of oil in a bowl of water to promote healing in a sick room. Burn Juniper for purification and good health.  One of the earliest incenses used by Witches was made from a combination of the leaves and the dried crushed berries.

Though burning Juniper wood gives off only minimal visible smoke, this smoke is highly aromatic, and in ancient times it was used for the ritual purification of temples. The smoke was said to aid clairvoyance, and continued to be burned for purification and to stimulate contact with the Otherworld at the autumn Samhain fire festival at the beginning of the Celtic year.

In central Europe Juniper smoke played a part in the spring-time cleansing and casting out of witchcraft. Juniper was also burned during outbreaks of the Plague, and in Scotland the disease could be dispelled by fumigating the house with Juniper smoke while its occupants were inside, after which the house was aired and the occupants revived with whisky!

Juniper was burned to goddesses and gods in ancient Sumer and Babylon, and was widely used in Egyptian incense formulas. It was sacred to Inanna and her later counterpart Ishtar. Many centuries later in Europe, branches of Juniper were smoldered and carried around fields and farms to release protective energies and guard livestock and crops.

It is a common ritual incense ingredient in Tibet and was much used by various Native American groups.

It is said that a Juniper shrub or tree is a particularly effective and magical hiding place. Perhaps Juniper can be added to hiding and invisibility charms as well.

Juniper essential oil is currently used in traditional aromatherapy to detoxify the body, as a parasite destroyer and antiseptic. This seems in keeping with the “magickal” use of purifying homes and fields mentioned above, for protective rituals are designed to ward off negativity as well as to purge such energies from a person or place.

Inhale Juniper essential oil while visualizing its energies guarding you from negativity and danger. Or, for an internal purification, smell Juniper and visualize.

You can also make Juniper a part of health-maintaining rituals. Regularly smell the scent while seeing yourself eating correctly, exercising, and thinking positively.

Notes:

Because it is a variety of Juniper, and the magickal uses are quite similar, Eastern Red Cedar can be used as a substitute, and vice versa. More about Red Cedar can be found here.

A Healing Ritual

There was a folk medicine custom in some parts of the South West of England of burning the wood and needles close to a sick person. This practice is closely allied to the above New Year customs and presumably recognizes that the vaporized oil released into the air had some beneficial purifying effect to dispel infection.

Like many plants, there was a definite ritual which had to be followed when pulling or collecting Juniper so that the power and essence of the plant was not lost. In the case of Juniper, it had to be pulled up by the roots, the branches made into four bundles and held between the five fingers while intoning the appropriate incantation. Unfortunately the version which has been passed down to us has been heavily Christianised:

“I will pull the bounteous yew,
Through the five bent ribs of Christ,
In the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost
Against drowning, danger and confusion.”

Juniper Mythology and Lore

Juniper was a symbol of the Canaanites’ fertility goddess Ashera or Astarte in Syria. In the Bible’s Old Testament, a Juniper with an angelic presence sheltered the prophet Elijah from Queen Jezebel’s pursuit. Similarly a later apocryphal biblical tale tells of how the infant Jesus and his parents were hidden from King Herod’s soldiers by a Juniper during their flight into Egypt.

Juniper plants are associated with protection in many different Native American tribes. The Interior Salish and Northwest Coast tribes used Juniper to banish evil spirits and protect themselves from witchcraft.

Among the southwestern Pueblos, junipers were believed to counteract ‘ghost sickness,’ a malady which afflicted bereaved relatives or people who handle the bodies of the dead.

Plains Indian tribes, such as the Dakota, Cheyenne, and Pawnee, often hung Juniper boughs on their tepees or burned them in the camp fire to keep their homes safe from storms.

And in many tribes people, especially hunters, would carry a spring of Juniper as a protective charm or rub Juniper branches on their bodies before embarking on a dangerous journey to protect themselves from grizzly bears, monsters, or general bad luck.

Juniper is one of the herbs frequently included in medicine bundles and amulets. Juniper berries were also eaten by people in some Southwestern and Southern California tribes, and Juniper leaves were frequently used as medicinal herbs.

Folk tradition records a divinatory significance to the appearance of Juniper in dreams, for:

  • It is unlucky to dream of the tree itself, especially if the person is sick.
  • To dream of gathering the berries, if it be in winter, denotes prosperity.
  • To dream of the actual berries signifies that the dreamer will shortly arrive at great honors and become an important person.
  • To the married it foretells the birth of a male child.

The largest body of folklore concerning Juniper comes from Iceland where it was traditionally believed that Juniper and rowan could not grow together because each creates so much heat that one or other of the trees would be burn up. For the same reason it was considered not a good idea to bring sprigs of both woods into the house together unless you particularly wanted your house to burn down.

Another Icelandic belief has it that if you are building a boat, you must either use both Juniper and rowan wood or use neither of them in the boat, otherwise it will sink.

In Wales it was said that anyone who cut down a Juniper tree would be dead within a year, while in Newfoundland it was believed that wolves and bears are repelled by Juniper wood and for this reason people who kept stock would ensure that Juniper wood was used in building enclosures or stockades in which livestock would be kept.

Also in Newfoundland it is believed that you will always find water under a Juniper tree, though this seems to contradict the natural history of Juniper which, as mentioned above, generally grows best on limestone or chalk soils which are usually well-drained.

The Story entitled Red Riding Hood in the book The Hero of Esthonia tells of a mother laying down Juniper branches and making the sign of the cross over them to protect her sleeping children from devils. In the story The Compassionate Shoemaker in the same book, the devil is defeated by being struck by a staff of Juniper.

In the Argonautica, Medea uses a freshly cut spray of Juniper to sprinkle her sleeping potion into the eyes of the serpent guarding the Golden Fleece.

  • Meaning and history of the name Juniper:

From the Latin, juniperus which means “youth producing” or “evergreen.” During the Renaissance era, Junipers were used symbolically in art to represent chastity. Juniper has historically been used as both a boys and girls name, in fact Saint Juniper and Thornton Wilder’s character Brother Juniper are both male.

The Juniper Tree – A Story

“The Juniper Tree”  is a German fairy tale collected by the Brothers Grimm. The text in the Grimm collection is in Low German and was originally written down by the painter Philipp Otto Runge. The complete story as originally written can be found over at Widdershins.

Here is a synopsis:

A wealthy and pious couple pray every day for God to grant them a child. One winter, under the Juniper tree in the courtyard, the wife peels an apple. She cuts her finger and drops of blood fall onto the snow. This leads her to wish for a child to be as white as snow and as red as blood. Six months later, the wife becomes gravely ill from eating Juniper berries and asks her husband to bury her beneath the Juniper tree if she dies.

A month later, she gives birth to a baby boy as white as snow and as red as blood. She dies of happiness. Keeping his promise, the husband buries her beneath the Juniper tree. He eventually marries again and he and his new wife have a daughter named Marlinchen (in some versions Marlene, Marjory or Ann Marie).

The new wife loves Marlinchen but despises her stepson. She abuses him every day, claiming that she wishes Marlinchen to inherit her father’s wealth instead of her stepson. One afternoon after school, the stepmother plans to lure her stepson into an empty room containing a chest of apples. Marlinchen sees the chest and asks for an apple, which the stepmother gracefully offers. However, when the boy enters the room and reaches down the chest for an apple, the stepmother slams the lid onto his neck, decapitating him.

The stepmother binds his head with the rest of his body with a bandage and props his body onto a chair outside, with an apple on his lap. Marlinchen, unaware of the situation, asks her stepbrother for an apple. Hearing no response, she is forced by her mother to box him in the ear, causing his head to roll onto the ground.

Marlinchen profusely cries throughout the day whilst the stepmother dismembers the stepson’s body and cooks him into a “blood-soup” for dinner. She later deceives her husband by telling him that his son stayed at the mother’s great uncle’s house. The husband unwittingly eats the “blood-soup” during dinner and proclaims it to be delicious. Marlinchen gathers the bones from the dinner and buries them beneath the Juniper tree with a handkerchief.

Suddenly, a mist emerges from the Juniper tree and a beautiful bird flies out. The bird visits the local townspeople and sings about its brutal murder at the hands of its stepmother. Captivated by its lullaby, a goldsmith, a shoemaker and a miller offer the bird a gold chain, a pair of red shoes and a millstone in return for the bird singing its song again. The bird returns home to give the gold chain to the husband while giving Marlinchen the red shoes.

Meanwhile, the stepmother complains about the “raging fires within her arteries”, revealed to be the real cause of her anger and hatred towards her stepson. She goes outside for relief but the bird drops the millstone onto her head, killing her instantly. Surrounded by smoke and flames, the son, revealed to be the bird, emerges and reunites with his family. They celebrate and head inside for lunch, and live happily ever after.

Sources:

  • Latin Name: Thuja occidentalis
  • Alternative names: Thuja, White Cedar
  • Ruler: Sun, Venus
  • Type: Evergreen Tree
  • Magickal Form: Bark chips, Twigs and Branch tips, Essential Oil

One of the holiest of woods, cedar is considered feminine and receptive in nature. White Cedar (Arborvitae) denotes great beauty, majesty, and strength. It is highly protective when worn and draws money, good health, and well-being when burned. White Cedar (Arborvitae) wood and bark appear in spells where benevolent power is needed.

Add to love potions when strength is needed to overcome hardships. White Cedar (Arborvitae) opens up intuitive channels and brings forth compassion and humility. It is a true symbol of prosperity.

To move a person out without hurting him, cut three White Cedar branches, one three feet long and the others one foot long. Carry them to the person’s house and lay the long branch on the pathway, touching the front door and pointing to the street. Place the two short branches crosswise to this, at equal distances from each other to make a “double cross” shape. As you lay down the branches say: Now you will move by Faith (first branch). Hope (second branch). and Charity (third branch). Then walk away.

To rent a room put Arborvitae or White Cedar oil on the doorknob. People who come to see the room, will touch the doorknob and they will be more inclined to rent it.

To make the one you love follow you, wrap a fresh fig leaf tightly around a strip of White Cedar bark and wrap a leaf torn fro the Bible tightly around them both. Carry this on you, and your lover will follow you if you move.

History and Lore

White Cedar (Arborvitae) is a tree with important uses in traditional Ojibwe culture. Honored with the name Nookomis Giizhik (“Grandmother Cedar”), the tree is the subject of sacred legends and is considered a gift to humanity for its myriad uses, among them crafts, construction, and medicine.

A nice native American story about the Cedar can be found here: The Story Of Cedar.

It is one of the four plants of the Ojibwe medicine wheel, associated with the north. White-cedar foliage is rich in Vitamin C and is believed to be the annedda which cured the scurvy of Jacques Cartier and his party in the winter of 1535–1536. There are some reports that the Ojibwa made a soup from the inner bark of the soft twigs.

Arborvitae Aromatherapy

Turn Arborvitae oil into a household spray with this easy do-it-yourself. Add a few drops of Arborvitae essential oil into a spray bottle and add water. Use this spray on surfaces or on hands. Arborvitae oil is a powerful cleansing and purifying agent. By incorporating this spray into your home, you can protect yourself and your family against seasonal and environmental threats while keeping your house fresh and clean.

Arborvitae essential oil has the ability to inspire feelings of peace and calm. If you are looking for a great way to unwind after a long day, place a few drops of Arborvitae oil into a diffuser or rub a drop of Arborvitae oil onto your wrists to produce a sense of peace and calm. Additionally, using Arborvitae essential oil during yoga or Pilates can increase the effectivity of your experience by inducing feelings of soothing relaxation. Diffusing Arborvitae essential oil can also help purify the air and provide a grounding aroma.

Bring your furniture back to life with this DIY Wood Polish with essential oils. If you want to keep wood looking fresh and clean, it is important to invest in proper cleaning supplies and a good routine. One of the most effective ways to clean wood is by using a wood polish that is natural and free of any harmful chemicals. Many commercial wood polishes contain chemicals and artificial fragrances that can cause irritation or health problems when not applied with proper safety precautions. Follow the instructions to this homemade solution to create a natural wood polish that is free of harmful toxins.

Wood furniture should only be polished every couple of months, but make sure to maintain the look and quality of your wood furniture by frequently dusting it or wiping it with a damp microfiber cloth. This will help to keep dust and damaging substances away from the wood and will help keep the wood from looking aged.

Create your own musky outdoor cologne with Arborvitae essential oil. Arborvitae oil’s aroma is woody and warm and when combined with Cedarwood and Frankincense, provides an invigorating aroma, perfect for a fresh cologne scent. Using these oils together will create a great cologne for any occasion and will also produce a fragrance that uplifts and relaxes the senses.

Arborvitae essential oil blends well with Birch, Cedarwood, Cassia, Cinnamon Bark, and Eucalyptus essential oils for diffusion.

Sources:

  • Latin Name: Juniperus virginiana
  • Planet: Sun
  • Element: Fire
  • Part Used: Dried wood, essential oil
  • Magickal Influences: Spirituality, Self-control
  • Warning: Cedarwood oil should not be used by pregnant women.

Cedar has an important place in many cultures as a strong spiritual agent with a cleansing presence, a protective plant in rituals and as medicine. It is commonly ascribed similar properties as Sage; the needles, bark, or sap is burnt as an incense, the smoke it emits protecting and cleansing against spiritual “residue.” Cedar can be “smudged” like sage, to purify a space, home, or person.

In the ancient world, cedar from Lebanon was highly prized – so much so that only a few trees remain standing in that country. The name Lebanon is derived from the Akkadian word lubbunu, incense.

This was one of the most widely used incenses in the general Mesopotamian region and by the pre-contact Native American tribes.

There are few among us who aren’t familiar with the rich scent of cedar. Shavings of the wood are sold in pet supply stores. The characteristic smell of pencils stems from the red cedarwood used to produce them. And many of us have at least smelled a cedarwood chest. These are ideal for storing magickal supplies (everything, that is, except herbs and essential oils).

The fragrant, calming smoke when the wood burns is believed to allay nightmares, night terrors, hauntings, malevolent influences/thought forms, evil spirits, and ill-meaning wild animals. Many native peoples in North America use the smoke to cleanse a home; in the Native-Hispanic traditions, home-cleansings are called “limpias,” and Cedar wood being favored in this way. Again, the smoke of Cedar is used to purify the body, not just the home.

Two main cedarwood essential oils are available. Because the essential oils share similar constituents, Atlas Cedarwood (Cedrus atlantica) or Red Cedarwood (Juniperus virginiana) can be used with equal effectiveness in magickal aromatherapy.

The scent of the wood and the essential oil promotes spirituality. Inhale this sweetly antiseptic, calming fragrance before religious rituals to deepen your connection with Deity.

It’s spiritual qualities make the fragrance of cedar ideal for bringing ourselves into balance. Smell the aroma and visualize yourself as poised, calm, and in control of your own life.

Many Cherokee descendants carry a small piece of cedar wood in their medicine bags worn around the neck for protection. In a legend of the cedar tree told by the Cherokee Indians, the trees literally hold spirits of their ancestors, and they believe the wood carries powerful protective spirits. It is told that the Creator placed the spirits of their people in a newly created tree which makes it a very special tree indeed.

In another old Indian legend, a young hunter has a vision of a redheaded woodpecker that teaches him how to make the flute from a red cedarwood tree; the young hunter uses his flute as a love charm to win his wife, who was the daughter of a big and powerful chief of the village.

It made its way into folklore; bringing good luck and good fortune, health and healing, cedar was burned to invite positive energy, happiness, harmony and peace. Cedar chips or shavings were burned to purify the vibrations of your sacred area and house, driving out all negative entities. Fresh cedar boughs are used as brooms for purification, exorcisms and to cleanse temples.

Superstitions and Lore

The Eastern Red Cedar is a slow growing tree and lives to be very old. It gets its name, grave yard tree, because of an old superstition that says, when a red cedar you planted grows tall enough to shade your grave, it will be time for you to die.

Never transplant a Cedar tree, it is bad luck. If you do transplant a Cedar tree and it dies, you will die soon thereafter.

In the Medieval Christian tradition, a cedar trees (along with elder trees) were thought to possibly have been used to make the cross that Jesus was crucified on, for this reason it was considered bad luck to burn cedar. It was also believed that Cedar brought poverty, so it was not a good idea to put one in your yard.

On the other hand, if a Cedar tree comes up on your land, don’t cut it down. As long as that tree flourishes, your family will have good health.

The Arabs referred to the older Cedars of Lebanon as “saints” and believed that he who injured one would be overtaken by evil.

Some Thoughts About Red Cedar

From the Iowa Herbalist here are some interesting thoughts about the Eastern Red Cedar:

I always find it interesting and thought-provoking when the spiritual and emotional effects of plants reflect their physical ones. Just as Cedar seeks to purge our bodies of spiritual impurities, or to protect a home from negative influences, the hard reality is seen at work when Cedar is taken as medicine: whether it is expelling mucus from our lungs as a stimulating expectorant, clearing them of bacterial or viral infection; or opening up our pores in a cleansing fever to clear toxins, as invoked and adopted by sweat ceremonies. Whether you believe in esoteric herbalism, or not, Cedar does one thing: it cleans us, in mind and body.

Now, when I take that mind-transporting whiff of Cedar smoke, I realize why I felt that way. This beautiful tree’s magic is powerful. If you ever need a friend in the midst of illness, or during a hard emotional time, or if you just need to get some bugs out of your system– Cedar is your herb.

If you wish for simpler times, are feeling nostalgic or just want to reminisce, no plant can summon that feeling better; taking you far up into a cabin in the mountains, surrounded by pines and firs, and blankets. Enjoy it in a tea, your favorite elixir, a tasty syrup or perhaps in a calming incense blend. I remember such effects when I’m winding in between the rust-colored Eastern Red Cedars, peppered across Iowa’s tawny grasslands in winter, harvesting their little blue cones. Each time I bring in a jar or two, I spread some of the berries in places where Cedars don’t grow– to make sure there are more trees there for us to enjoy in the future. It’s my way of saying: “Thank you.”

About Juniper

Because Red Cedar is a Juniper plant, the following also holds true.

Juniper, particularly through her wood and berries, is an absolutely wonderful tree with a wide range of uses. In terms of overall meanings in a North American context, we might summarize with the following:

Juniper is about warmth and fire. Juniper helps warm people up and is a strong fire-dominant tree, suggesting many associations with fire: passion, energy, warmth, and the sun.

Juniper offers hope in dark times. Juniper’s berries have long been a staple through the darkest of winters, and I see this both physically and metaphorically. Culturally, we are in a period of darkness, and trees like Juniper can help see us through.

Juniper offers regeneration and bringing things back. Juniper’s ability to grow in places few other trees can demonstrate that this tree is a true land healer, offering us hope in these dark times and sharing the critical message of the healing power of nature. I also think this is tied to its sympathetic magick uses in the American magickal traditions–Juniper helps bring things back.

Sources:

Folk Names:

  • Angel Food
  • Archangel
  • Garden Angelica
  • Masterwort
  • Root of the Holy Ghost

Magickal Uses:

Angelica (Angelica archangelica) is known in magickal herbalism as a powerful guardian and healer. It is said to banish negativity and attract positive energy. Angelica grows in tall, blossoming stalks—but typically only the root portion is used in spellwork. It is said to enhance female power, protect children, ward off evil, and improve health and family matters.

Angelica means angelic and in the places where it grows, it has been revered as a special plant. In Scandanavia, it was used as a shamanic medicine by the indigenous Sami people. In the U.S., various varieties of Angelica were used in rituals and ceremonies by Native American tribes. The Iroquois brewed Angelica root into a tea and sprinkled it about their homes to quiet “rattling” ghosts.

Angelica’s magickal virtues are linked to its robust stature, pleasant aroma, and association with the Archangel Michael. Legend has it that the angel appeared in a dream to a monk, showing him the herb that could cure the plague in Europe. Traditionally, Angelica blooms on the feast of the Apparition of the Archangel Michael, May 8.

Ruled by the Sun and associated with Venus, Angelica is most often used in spells for protection and exorcism. It can be grown in the garden as a protection. Carry the root with you as an amulet. Burn the dried leaves in exorcism rituals.

Burn the powdered root when you want to invoke angels. Because Angelica is a healing herb, you can mix it in bathwater to promote good health. it also removes hexes. Sprinkle around the house to ward off evil or dry dust your body to remove a curse. It is an ingredient in a Hoodoo working known as the Fiery Wall of Protection.

Angelica is also considered lucky, so rub the root between your palms when you gamble or pick your lottery numbers.

  • Carry a piece of Angelica root to bring strength and ward off hexes.
  • Put the root in a white mojo bag for protection, or a yellow one for courage.
  • Add the dried root to incenses, floor washes, and baths to break jinxes and purify the home.
  • Use Angelica to consecrate amulets of Archangel Michael and all Solar charms.

Angelica is associated with personal courage, when that courage is based in moral uprightness. Angelica is said to bring blessings of emotional temperance and harmonious home life.

Mexicans say that if a girl or young woman has been badly frightened, she should carry a whole Angelica root in a white bag. If she was frightened by a man, add a holy card of the Archangel Michael.

Folklore:

It is the date of the blooming that has been regarded as the source of the plant’s name. The day of Michael the Archangel used to be May 8, and Angelica blooms on that date, hence Angelica archangelica. There is more of Angelica in the folklore, such as the legend that an archangel revealed in a vision that Angelica would cure the plague. In time, Angelica came to be regarded as a simply angelic plant, and was known widely as “The Root of the Holy Ghost.”

The history of Angelica is rooted in prehistoric times and even the passage of centuries couldn’t shake the associations between Angelica and pagan beliefs from the Christian mind. It is altogether possible that the plant acquired its angelic stature in the folklore because of the pagan regard for the plant as an infallible guard against witches and evil spirits, and their spells and enchantments.

Peasants tied Angelica leaves around the necks of their children to protect them from harm, and even the name, when invoked, was supposed to be helpful in a jam.

It is alleged that it is the custom in the lake district of what was once Latvia for country peasants to take part in an annual procession, carrying Angelica stems to sell in the towns. Part of the procession is the chanting of a chorus with words so old that no one knows what they mean. This ritual was an early-summer custom and the words of the chorus have been passed from generation to generation.

Metaphysical Meanings

  • Magnifies: Divine support, wisdom + deeper meaning
  • Dissolves: Apathy, lack of connection, superficiality, surface level perspective

If you are attracted to Angelica, you may be interested in distilling a deeper meaning from everything in life. You may feel tired of things that feel flat or superficial, yearning for a deeper authentic connection to people and a truer intimacy in relationships.

Sometimes we feel safer staying on the surface level in our conversations and experiences. Other times we feel a sense of apathy, disengagement, or worry that there is no greater meaning to the occurrences in our lives. We may fight what happens to us, try to control it or feel hopeless vs. trusting in the wisdom of life.

Angelica magnifies our everyday experience of interconnectedness and deeper meaning woven throughout everything that happens in our lives. It enhances our awareness of benevolent unseen forces and angelic or protective support. It opens up a visceral sense of magic and synchronicity, and a feeling of being fortunate, lucky and grateful. Everything around us feels whimsical and rich with meaning.

We can relinquish control and allow ourselves to trust in the way life unfolds. We have a sense that we are connected to everything and that there is divine support in all our endeavors. We experience a knowingness that we are supported by divine or beneficial good forces and we can ask for assistance or have a relationship with them.

Sources:

This information was collected from a variety of sources all of which are listed in a much more in depth look at Angelica over at the Encyclopedia of Herbology

One of the strongest ingredients for male virility, the Horseradish root is in essence magickal Viagra. It is cultivated in the spring and difficult to find at any other time of the year.

  • Women should lay the whole root on the belly and visualize either getting pregnant or being satisfied sexually.
  • Men must hold the whole root to the genitals and visualize long-lasting erections.
  • Perform these visualizations on a full moon.

Eat both white and red shredded horseradish at any time of the year for protection.

To reverse any malevolent magick against a building’s inhabitants, grate or grind dried horseradish root. Sprinkle it over your thresholds, corners, windows, and any areas perceived as vulnerable.

Source: Encyclopedia of Herbology

Also known as Creeping Charlie, Ground ivy has a strong connection with the powers of magick and divination. Folk names include:

  • Alehoof
  • Catsfoot
  • Field balm
  • Gill-by-the-ground
  • Gill-over-the-ground
  • Hay-maidens
  • Hedge-maids
  • Jenny-run-by-the-ground
  • Lizzy-run-up-the-hedge
  • Run-away-robin
  • Tunhoof

Ground Ivy is bound to Saturn and water. It is used in magick mostly for divination purposes either by burning dried leaves, by using the oil to anoint a divinatory tool, such as a deck of Tarot cards or by drinking fresh or dried leaves in a tea.

Sachets, charms and teas made of fresh or dried ground ivy can be worn for help in rebuilding when you have given too much, as protection from theft, and for fidelity, honesty, and weddings or new love.

Considered a safeguard against sorcery it was worn by milkmaids when first milking cows in the pastures. A magic charm, it was used to prevent the cows from enchantment. In many regions the first milking of the cows was actually done through a wreath of ground ivy.

Other magical uses of ground ivy included promoting sleep, meditation, healing, love, friendship and fidelity. The ritual use of ground ivy was popular and the herb was often woven into crowns and garlands to be worn on Midsummer’s Eve.

Ground Ivy is very powerful in protection against evil magick and psychic attacks. Using this herb will help you in identifying other witches and will help you reveal who is using negative magick against you.

“To find out who might be using negative magic against you, place some ground ivy around the base of a yellow candle. Burn the candle on a Tuesday and the person will then become known to you.”
~Scott Cunningham

A tea of Gill-over-the-Ground may be sipped to help overcome shyness. Strewing leaves of this herb about the floors of your home is said to promote serenity and peaceful dreams.

If you celebrate Beltane, weave some stems and flowers into your crown. Pick an alias name for it that appeals to you—my personal favorite is Gill-over-the Ground. Repeat it several times until it rolls nicely off your tongue and sounds almost exotic. And, if you must pluck some of it, at least stop and pay homage to the myriad of uses of it throughout time. Ground ivy, a small herb with great determination!

Sources:

  • Scientific Name: Helianthus annuus
  • Type: Plant
  • Quality: Hot
  • Planet : Sun
  • Element: Fire
  • Parts Used: Seed, Flowers, Whole Plant
  • Basic Powers: Protection, Fertility

When summer is at its peak, its not uncommon to see rows of sunflowers blooming in all of their colorful glory. Ranging from just a foot or two high to well over eight feet in height, sunflowers come in a variety of yellows and oranges. Sunflowers have been growing in North America for ages, so there is a significant amount of folklore surrounding them.

No flower can lift someone’s spirits quite like sunflowers. They are bright and cheery, and as warm and inviting as the sweet summer sun. With brilliant yellow petals, also known as “rays,” sunflowers have an unmistakable sun-like appearance.

As its name signifies, the sunflower has close solar associations, not only because of its appearance, but also because of its habit of turning its head to follow the course of the Sun during its journey across the sky.

Spirits of the dead are drawn to this flower, for it reminds them of the sunlit world they once lived within.

The sunflower has magickal powers, too, and adorned the crowns of Roman emperors, thereby conferring the ruler with the potent power of the Sun that the flower held within it. The sunflower was later adopted by the Christian Church to denote the saints, prophets, and apostles of the faith; as the flower follows the Sun, so the true believer follows God.

Sunflower Lore

The sunflower originated in South and Central America, and migrated north, most likely due to the migration of Spanish conquistadors. Remains of sunflowers dating back 4,600 years have been found in Mexico. In the 1500s, Spanish explorers took sunflowers back to Europe with them, and the species has spread around the world since then.

In the 16th century, Inca priestesses in Peru worshiped a giant variety of the sunflower plant. This plant was a symbol of the Inca sun god.

The Inca priestesses wore clothing that was adorned with large flower shaped ornaments. These ornaments and decorations were made from gold, and the image of the sunflower was often carved into golden breastplates.

The sunflower was sacred to Native Americans; the flowers were used extensively in celebrations and festivities.

Native Americans used this plant for food and other things. It is believed that it was a very important Native American crop. Like the Inca priestesses that came before them, Native Americans also worshiped the plant.

They held spiritual ceremonies such as the Sun Dance. As well as being a food source, the flower became a symbol of strength and endurance. They would put sunflower seeds on top of graves containing their dead.

Early colonists in North America learned about the many uses of sunflowers from the tribes near them. In addition to being useful as a source of yellow and orange dye for fabric, the sunflower also comes in handy medicinally – it was known for its antimalarial properties.

Sunflowers In Legend

The Greek legend had it that a nymph called Clytie and the Sun God, Helios, were in love. But Helios cast aside poor Clytie for another lover. Clytie died of grief and was transformed into the sunflower, destined to live alone and having to follow the course of her former love. Therefore the sunflower, as a symbol has adopted an aspect of Clytie’s personality: the inability to overcome the emotions or to “let go.”

  • An alternative story is as follows:

There was a maiden who fell in love with Apollo. Every time he passed overhead in his fiery sun chariot, she stood in her garden and gazed at him longingly, even though she had chores and tasks to attend to. Apollo, who made a point of shining brightly so people on earth couldn’t actually see him, eventually got fed up with the girl’s foolishness. He flung one of his sun arrows at her, and she turned into a sunflower on the spot.

To this day, she faces east in the morning and west in the evenings, following the path of Apollo. In some versions of the story, it was not Apollo but the other gods who took pity upon her and turned her into a sunflower.

Sunflower Symbolism

The sunflower is a symbol of light, hope, and innocence, and has been adopted fairly recently as a symbol for world peace.

Sunflowers are known for being “happy” flowers, making them the perfect gift to bring joy to someone’s (or your) day.

In many folkloric traditions, sunflowers are seen as symbols of good luck. Sunflowers are often associated with truth, loyalty, and honesty.

The seed head of the sunflower contains a magical symbol. It shows a perfect example of the golden spiral that has been created naturally. This shape is one of the cornerstones of sacred geometry.

The Victorian language of flowers gave it various connotations, so that in certain contexts it stood for lofty ideas, or less flatteringly as a symbol for false riches.

In China, this flower symbolizes longevity or long life. It may be due to the sun which is perceived to have an enduring life even though eventually it will die out.

On a practical note, when these plant stems are cut to make flowers for vases and bouquets, they can last for 2-3 weeks so are quite hardy.

In dreams, the sunflower is believed to be a very lucky symbol or motif. It is viewed as symbolizing career and employment ambitions, wealth, good fortune and positive opportunities.

This flower is quite the lucky charm for someone who may be beginning on a new career path or starting a job.

One of the sunflower’s greatest and most important symbolic meanings is that of having a nuclear-free world. This flower was chosen back in 1996 in order to represent a world of peace and one that is free of any harmful nuclear weapons.

New varieties and seeds were planted during this time on an old Ukrainian missile base and also planted across nuclear disaster sites such as Fukushima, Chernobyl and Hiroshima.

The flowers have been shown to absorb harmful toxic elements and radiation from the soil and clean up the environment. Being so good for the environment as well as beautiful to look at, it is no wonder that the sunflower has now truly become a symbol of peace and also hope for the future of humankind.

Magickal Uses:

Faery flower sorcery sees the sunflower as harnessing the energy of the sun itself, making it useful for positive magick and lightwork. The light contained in its yellow petals radiates strength, useful for dispelling depression and encouraging a healthy sense of pride.

The flowers growing in the garden bring the blessings of the Sun. The seeds are often eaten by women who wish to conceive. This is done during the waxing Moon.

Always include a sunflower or sunflower seeds in a birthday spell to increase happiness, health, and years. Sprinkle the seeds on the earth to invoke prosperity. Place the flowers on a love altar to invoke a long-lasting relationship.

Sunflowers are symbols of good luck. Planting them around your home and garden will bring fortune your way. It is also said that if you pick a sunflower at sunset, then wear it on your person, it will bring you good luck the following day.

Sunflower seeds that dry and remain on the flower head are said to possess the magickal capacity to grant wishes. Hold an individual seed in your left hand and make your wish. Eat the seed or plant it in Earth.

Sunflowers are also associated with truth, loyalty, and honesty. If you want to know the truth about something, sleep with a sunflower under your pillow – and the next day, before the sun goes down, the truth should be revealed to you.

To reveal a thief, place three sunflowers under your pillow. The thief will be revealed in your dreams.

The sunflower is considered a flower of loyalty because day after day, it follows the sun, from east to west. In some folk magic traditions, it is believed that slipping a bit of sunflower oil or seeds into someone’s food or drink will cause them to be loyal to you.

The sunflower is often associated with fertility, thanks to its connection to the sun. To bring about conception, eat sunflower seeds or take a ritual bath with sunflower petals. A necklace or crown of dried sunflower heads can be worn–particularly at Litha, the summer solstice–to bring about fertility.

In 17th Century Europe, some rural practitioners of folk magic used an ointment that would help them see the Faerie folk. This used a blend of several summer, sun-oriented flowers, mixed in with sunflower oil and left in the sun for three days until it thickened.

Some people believed that sunflower seeds were preventatives against the spread of smallpox.  Weave and knot dried sunflowers into necklaces and wear them to magickally repel smallpox.

In some forms of Hoodoo, the sunflower is associated with great joy. The oil is often used as a base in magical oils for ritual purposes. You can blend your own magical sunflower oil by blending freshly harvested petals into a carrier or base of sunflower seed oil, which is available in most grocery stores.

Please note that this is not the traditional hoodoo sunflower oil recipe, but it is still one that is effective. Once you’ve mixed your oil, consecrate it according to the method of your own magical tradition before using it in spellwork or ritual. A simple way to do this, with sunflower oil, is to leave it in the sun to absorb solar energy prior to use.

Brew a tea of sunflower petals in water, and use it to asperge around a sacred space during Litha rituals or solar-related spellwork. If you’re grieving or feeling down, use sunflower petals in a ritual bath for a magical, sunny pick-me-up.

The Spiritual Meaning of the Sunflower

The sunflower appears to worship the sun because the blooms have been thought to face the sun as it slowly moves and travels across the sky each day.

Many people view this flower as being highly spiritual. These flowers appear as if they follow the sun as it moves each day from East to West in the sky. It makes the flowers look as if they are highly loyal and devout, just as a follower of faith is.

In a spiritual meaning, these plants are seen as being genuine followers of the sun. This has a connection with Christians following God and other religions following their spiritual guide or divine being.

No matter how small or how little light there is, sunflowers are believed to seek out the light and hold their heads high as if in worship and adoration of the sun.

They are therefore a symbol of true and faithful loyalty to something that is much brighter and bigger than themselves.

Sources:

  • ALEXANDRITE is a rare and expensive gemstone, when worn it draws luck and good fortune.
  • AMBER is the fossilized resin of ancient coniferous trees.It has been used for nearly every purpose in magic. Warm to the touch, it is thought to possess life. Lucky and protective.
  • APACHE TEAR, a globule of translucent obsidian, is carried as a good-luck charm.
  • AVENTURINE is an all-around luck stone.
  • CHALCEDONY, an arrowhead carved of chalcedony is worn or carried for luck.
  • CHRYSOPRASE is a lucky stone worn for eloquence, success in new undertakings, and to attract friends.
  • COPPER is a lucky metal, perhaps because of its past solar attributions, and so can be used in combination with any luck-bringing gemstones.
  • CROSS STONE, a form of andalusite is found in coarse crystals. When broken open or sliced, they display a symmetrical cross pattern of alternating dark and light colors. As with all stones exhibiting unusual shapes or patterns, it is carried for luck.
  • L-SHAPED stones are thought to bring good fortune, perhaps because this form suggest the conjunction of the spiritual with the physical. They can be carried as good luck pieces or placed on the altar.
  • LEPIDOLITE is a purplish type of mica rich in lithium. It is a beautiful yet fragile mineral, carried to attract good luck to it’s bearer.
  • LODESTONE is carried in pairs — one to protect and the other to bring good luck.
  • OPAL, due to its flashing colors and beautiful unique appearance, the opal is a luck-bringing stone. The modern idea that the opal is a stone of misfortune, sorrow, and bad luck is untrue and can be traced back to a reference in the novel, Anne of Gierstein by Sir Walter Scott.
  • ORANGE stones have some of the fire of red but are gentler in their effects. Protective, they have often been seen as symbols of the Sun and are thought to be luck attracting.
  • SARDONYX was at one time engraved with an eagle’s head, set in silver, platinum, or gold, and worn to bring good luck.
  • TIN is carried as a good-luck piece and can be shaped into talismans to attract money.
  • TURQUOISE like all blue stones, is lucky and is carried to attract good fortune.

From: Cunningham’s Encyclopedia of Crystal, Gem and Metal Magic

  • Basic Powers: For property matters.
  • Pronunciation: “oath-awe-law”

To call on ancestral powers, including calling up their spirits. This is a rune of merchants, but also the land-holding nobles and both classes in which inheritance, property and goods play a key role. It thus aids in partnerships, whether those of business, politics, or marriage.

It can be used to guard family fortunes or build the strength of a dynasty. It can also develop strengths and talents in an individual. These abilities are considered latent, and brought out by reference to ancestral (or genetic) potential. In Odin’s poem, the seventeenth rune is a charm that will make a girl loathe to leave him; that is, it draws her into a commitment.

Othala signifies possessions or ancestral lands and characteristics. This rune encourages a down-to-earth attitude of life. When paired with Fehu, good for monetary gains. Use wherever the health of the elderly is the issue. Protection of possessions.

Maintaining order among fellows. Concentration on common interests in home and family. Shift from ego-centricity to clan loyalty. Collection of numinous power and knowledge from past generations. Acquisition of wealth and prosperity.

The Chant

othala othal othal
o o o o o o o o o
o o o o o o
othul othal othil othel othol
othol othel othil othal othul
o o o o o o

It can be used in conjunction with the symbol, or chanted while visualizing the symbol. The symbol can be etched into a candle while intoning the chant, and then, as the candle burns, the spell is released and sent.

The Statement of Intent:

One loves the land they live upon
sharing in its rights and duties.
Thus the land protects its friends
if its friends respect it.

This is a modern version of the “Rune Poem” that defines this particular rune. It can be used in combination with the chant, and while creating a talisman or spell that uses the power of this rune.

Runic Posture

Rune Yoga, or Runic postures are used to anchor the energy of the Rune in your physical body. More about them can be found here: Runic Postures.

Assume the recommended runic posture and sing the name of the rune in a non-exhaustive way that you can feel your body vibrating – in magic literature it is called vibrating. It could be that you can hear overtones clearer as usual during vibrating. Take this as a good sign. You are visualizing the rune with your inner eye, as its form is being represented by your body and the energies are flowing through your body.

Stand up straight, legs apart. Bring your hands up to the top of your head, arms bent as shown in the picture. Hold the palms of the hands flat and level with the ground.

Before practicing a rune it is recommended to know everything on the powers of the rune you want to practice. The flow of energy is different for each rune, a field of research for your sensitivity.

The hand positions, or mudras are effective only after you have anchored the runes in your own aura and body. They can be made silent and unobtrusive.

Sources:

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“Magic is only unexplained science. Science is explained magic. When I study science, I study magic. When I study magic, I study science.” ― C. JoyBell C.
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