One of the darkest chapters in the history of herbs has been in the traditional usages of "baneful" (poisonous) herbs. Such herbs, including henbane, hemlock, hellebore, mandrake and datura, were popular in Renaissance magic for inducing visions, creating the illusion of psychic awareness, drawing
Growing herbs is a delightful past time. Not only can we enjoy the curious fragrances and often beautiful leaves and flowers of the plants themselves, but we’re also assured of a steady supply of herbs for use in magic. Most herb magicians grow at least a few herbs.
Packets of herb seeds are
- The magician should be alone during spellcasting. The presence of others will only hurt the magician’s efforts. Some wait until the others in the house are asleep before casting their spells. (Many people temporarily turn off the phones and disconnect the smoke detector to ensure that they
It isn’t until Christianity began to stamp out all remaining traces of pre-Christian practices that herb magic began to suffer a decline. Centuries-old practices were suddenly condemned by a Church that had grown frightened of persons with power. Herb magic went underground or was adapted. Much
Why would a woman tuck a sachet of laven-der beneath her pillow? What would motivate a rational man to sprinkle dried basil around his store before opening for business each morning? And for what reason would a grand-mother grow garlic beside her home? These persons, and countless others, have
Herbs can be found almost anywhere. They grow in our front yards; along country roads; beside streams; in deserts; on mountaintops; in drowsy forests; on disturbed ground. Many are nourished in gardens, both culinary and magical.
Some herbalists today state that using plants that are native to the
Herb magic began in the distant past, when humans first began experimenting with the plants that they found growing around them. Color, form, scent and taste attracted humans to certain plants. Our ancestors eventually dis-covered many uses for these seemingly simple life forms: food, clothing,
Fortunately, the herbs didn’t die out, and neither did much of the information. The great herbals by Theophrastus, Dioscorides, "Apuleius," Gerard, Coles and others preserved much herb magic, as did the works of Pliny, Agrippa, Porta and other early writers. Scraps of manuscripts housed in
Even botanists haven’t been able to agree on this. In magic, we avoid these arcane arguments by simply stating that an herb is any plant or any part of a plant that’s used in magic. An "herb" can be a cactus, a flower, a seaweed, a moss, a mushroom, a grass, a vine, shrub, bush or tree.
Folk magic was born in an age of wonder. Tens of thousands of years ago, nature was a mysterious force. Points of light swung far overhead in the sky. Invisible forces ruffled matted hair and kicked up dust storms. Water fell from above. Powerful forces, inconceivable to humans, sent flashes of
Fall in Love with the Knight of Pentacles
Your Tarot Toolkit: Simple Activities for Your Daily Practice by Ru-Lee Story
Pulling a card each day is a favorite tarot activity,...