When in doubt, blame the Tokoloshe!

This is my article for next month’s edition of Pagan Pages. Make sure to check out their website!

When in doubt, blame the Tokoloshe!

By Morgana Moonfire

Although some consider this fairy to be the African equivalent of the European brownie, many of its characteristics rather seem to portray it as a creature which could have walked straight out of a horror movie.

The Tokoloshe has acquired quite a lot of fame in Africa as most people living there will be familiar with it, especially in Southern Africa. “Tokoloshe” is believed to be derived from the Xhosa word “uthikoloshe”, but it is used by all peoples. According to one source, the name “Tikolosj” means “bag carrier” in Zulu and refers to the huge genitals of the Tokoloshe. It may also be called a Hili, Uhlakanyana or Gilikango.

Traditional magic and superstition have always constituted an important part of Southern African folklore and culture, in which the Tokoloshe appears most frequently. Belief in the Tokoloshe is widespread and whenever something goes wrong, it is not uncommon to blame this creature. We may regard the Tokoloshe as an imaginary creature from the rich and vivid African folklore, or as a creature which may have been invented to scare children; but in Africa every year serious crimes including murder are reported to have been committed by Tokoloshe. Many people in Africa are still reluctant to discuss the Tokoloshe as they believe that even using its name will call him to you and cause trouble.

Due to a lack of clarity as to which creature is exactly indicated with the word Tokoloshe, various fairies in Bantu folklore have come to be identified as Tokoloshe. Originally the Tokoloshe was a water sprite. The name is also often used for a domestic spirit in a witch’s or warlock’s household. This kind of Tokoloshe bears much more resemblance to the European brownie as it is usually described as a brown, hairy dwarf. However, the creature which is most frequently thought of when one hears the name “Tokoloshe” is a fearsome dwarf zombie, created out of a corpse in order to harm and torment the person that has been causing one distress or hardship.

This article will focus on the last type of Tokoloshe. References to this type of creature date back to before 1700. It is an evil or mischievous creature, half man half spirit, called into being by a witch doctor: a sangoma or n’anga. In order to create a Tokoloshe, the eyes and tongue from a fresh full-sized corpse should be removed, as well as the brain, which would cause their bodies to shrink to the size of a child and which would give them their pale, sickly and zombie-like appearance. The Tokoloshe would then be brought to life by a magical powder that is blown into their nostrils by the witch doctor. However, the spirits do not give life freely and as such they require the death of a relative within the year. For if you are prepared to create an unnatural life, you must also be prepared to destroy a natural one.

The Tokoloshe can only be seen by the intended victim unless it becomes completely invisible by swallowing a pebble. It may then go about different ways to terrorize the victim, ranging from physical attacks, illness and death to random appearances, the destruction of personal belongings and the home, all of which make the victim seem completely deranged to their surroundings as no-one else can see the Tokoloshe. The victim’s nightmare would be real only to them. The only way to get rid of a Tokoloshe is to call in the help of a witch doctor who would then trap, paralyze and catch the Tokoloshe with “muti”, a magical substance made from the body of a dead Tokoloshe. It will then become visible, allowing it to be killed.

The Tokoloshe can be described as follows: it is approximately 3.5 foot in height and is always male with genitals so large that it carries its penis slung over its shoulder. Some descriptions also claim that it has two animal horns protruding from its head. It appears as an ugly creature to men but may cast a spell to make itself handsome to women. It likes to wrap itself in hairy fur or dresses in the traditional way similar to the attire worn by witch doctors. According to some sources, the Tokoloshe has a single buttock. Regarding its oversized genitals, it is said that no man can beat the Tokoloshe when it comes to sexual skills. Some accounts of the Tokoloshe even include its function as a demon lover, having to satisfy the witch that controls it in bed.

It is a common belief among white people in South Africa that the black maids raise their beds on bricks in order to protect them from the Tokoloshe. The current joke in South Africa is about Skulk Burger, a great rugby player in the national team. It is said that Skulk Burger is so mean that the Tokoloshe sleep on raised beds. This joke proves just how current the Tokoloshe still is in South Africa.

Sources

 

http://www.mythical-creatures-and-beasts.com/tokoloshe.html

http://www.tokoloshe.tk/

http://www.vanhunks.com/tokoloshe1.html

http://www.lyfe.freeserve.co.uk/tokolosheadd.htm

http://www.safarinewsreel.com/blog/?p=227

http://www.aquiziam.com/tokkeloshe.html

http://www.gotravel24.com/theme/feature-focus/beware-tokoloshe

 

Crashed laptop

Hey everyone!

My apologies for the lack of updates… My laptop crashed and so I will not be able to continue the herb a week series and the podshow until my data has been recovered and all the issues have been sorted out.

I will be back as soon as possible!

Blessings

Funky Chicken aka Morgana Moonfire

Episode 3 – Flowing Chi: the Image of the Gods

EPISODE 3 LINK:

http://funkychicken.podbean.com/2010/10/06/episode-3-flowing-chi-the-image-of-the-gods/

Episode 3 show notes:

Escalator to Heaven

In this episode I will be talking about energy: how this energy binds us all together and exists within us, how we view this divine energy and how we may manipulate the flow of energy through Tai Chi or magick.

Poem by Bai Li

I will be reading to you the most famous poem of a well-known Chinese poet.

Soul Sight

In this segment I will mention how the right or wrong energy may affectTarot readings and again I will draw upon my own experiences.

Again any comments or suggestions are more than welcome. You can reach me at the Baobab forum http://s4.zetaboards.com/Baobabkot/index/, via my e-mail morganamoonfire@gmail.com or via this blog.

Blessings and I hope you enjoy it!

Funky Chicken

Outstanding Contribution

 

Outstanding Contribution

Thanks from all of us
at WiseWitchesSociety

go to
Morgana Moonfire

Dear Morgana

I would like to publicly acknowledge your contribution to our group. It is so appreciated. Thank you for all the time and effort you have given our group. We look forward to your continued posts in Herbs and Magic, Crystals and Gems, and to the Pod casts. You bless us all each time you share with us.

light love and blessings

Cara

 

Visit Wise Witches Society at: http://wisewitchessociety.ning.com/?xg_source=msg_mes_network

Comment by Morgana Moonfire:

This made me feel very honoured and truly made my day! I am glad that people appreciate my contributions because I have learned from others and I want to share my knowledge and journey.

For my readers: Check out the Wise Witches Society. The owners and moderators are very kind and supportive and I have much respect for them!

 

 

Conversing with the Cards – The Major Arcana: The Magician

The Magician

by Morgana Moonfire

Impressions: A shirtless man with a scruffy red beard and a big hat sits on his knees on a seat carved out of a rock. He holds a staff around which a snake is curled and various metal objects hang from the tree underneath which he is sitting. His clothes are simple and apart from the hat solely consist of plain trousers. Quite a few other animals surround him, including a white goat, a turtle and a rooster. At his knee he touches an object that resembles a chess board. A pouch hangs from his shoulder.

This man is obviously a magician. Earthly riches, other than those serving as instruments or tools, bear no importance in his eyes. As such, his attire is kept to a minimum, very plain and simple. The animals sense his capacities and are drawn towards him. His eyes are blue and bright and he lifts up his head just enough to fix one eye on me. Such a man has no need for earthly desires; to him they are futile and unimportant. He understands the greater treasures that life has to offer and knows where to look for them. Due to his appreciation of simplicity, he has learned to understand and bend the elemental forces in the world. Due to his patience and perseverance, he has mastered many arts, gained much knowledge and has become proficient in many a skill.

It are those who contemplate the profound nature of a situation – that which resides at the heart of the matter and which drives all else – who are able to grasp the true meaning and as a result wield the outcome to the benefit of all. We must learn to distinguish between what is important and what is not, see the virtue where virtue is to be found and identify the vice in any given position. By weighing up all the different sides to a story and by carefully pondering the various options available, a solution may be found to any problem. More often than not, all it takes is some healthy common sense.

Key words and sentiments: Make sure you can see the wood through the trees; if the situation asks it of you, climb a hill so that you may see everything from a distance; confidence; logic; satisfaction; fulfilment.

Conversing with the Cards – The Minor Arcana

The following post includes my impressions of the minor arcana, excluding the court cards, and the four suits. I have consciously tried to spend just a short while on each card so that I might be able to grasp the essential, basic energy of the card at a glance. This list is not meant to be correct, it merely shares my personal impressions.

Morgana Moonfire

Wands: fire, the soul, passion, will power, the primitive forces of nature that reside within us and the ones that act in the universe and which we have no control over.

Cups: water, the heart, emotions, relationships.

Pentacles: earth, the body, materialistic affairs, practical or tangible matters, health, wealth, work.

Swords: air, the mind, intellect, thoughts, mental abilities and mental health.

Suit Number Meaning
Wands Ace Primitive power, first growth or surge of power/passion; forceful, natural energy, where it all starts
Two Having achieved what you wanted to achieve, being at ease, having power, no worries or concerns, confidence
Three What’s to come, preparation, stillness before the storm, waiting, capability, being calm and unafraid of the future
Four Picking the fruits of your labour, harvest time, fruition of plans, prosperity, happiness, good times, celebrations
Five Fight, testing each other’s strength and one’s own strength, being tested, opposition
Six Victory, achievement, confidence, respect and support of others, conqueror, strength, capability, advancement, nothing can hold you back
Seven Take issues head on, face your problems, courage, strength, boldness
Eight Action, speed, news, enlightenment due to a message/news, something important is brought to might
Nine Effort, having to fight for something, determination in spite of the odds
Ten Heavy burden but you can pull it off if you put in a lot of effort, hold on, trying times, keep your eye on the prize, it will be hard to achieve your goal
Cups Ace Emotion, beginning of a new awareness or relationship
Two Partnership, harmony and support in relationships, understanding and attraction between two people
Three Solidarity, union and closeness in a group, everyone is on the same page, sincerity and integrity in relationships, people support you and are there for you
Four Desolation, disappointment, being blue or down, seeing only the negative side, being so absorbed in oneself (self-pity) that one does not see the gift/bright side of the situation or the opportunities that the situation brings
Five Desolation, hard time, things are not really optimum or as they should be
Six Happy memories, the past, people from the past, unfinished business or relevance of the past in the present
Seven Dreams, illusions, being unrealistic, preferring to live in a dream world
Eight Feeling lost or led astray/alone, not feeling sure or confident about oneself or one’s path
Nine Joy, bliss, achieving what you most desire, gain
Ten Satisfaction, harmonious and happy family life/domestic life, peace in the household
Pentacles Ace Beginning of manifestation of a project or wealth, putting in motion something, actions, deeds, hands-on experience
Two Balance, yin yang, coping very well with the small changes that are taking place, being able and at peace, no great upheavals
Three Seriousness, master, perfecting and perfection of skills, producing high-quality work, you know what you are doing, fulfillment and exceeding expectations, excelling at what you do
Four Greed, stubbornness, hanging on too much to something, selfishness, no real riches, being stingy, useless wealth, doing nothing with the opportunities that are available to you
Five Struggling financially or at work, be content with (the little that) what you have, use the means you have, financial or material setbacks, not a lot of possibilities, not the right time for projects or purchases, material loss
Six Generosity, teaching, wisdom and sharing of wisdom and knowledge, being friendly, goodness, sincerity, balance
Seven Period of waiting for results after the necessary deeds, monitoring the progress
Eight Labour, concentration, devotion, perfection and perfectionism, patience, eager and willing to work and perform well
Nine Abundance, good and prosperous times, time for leisure or personal projects and personal development, the sun is shining, happiness, everything is as it should be, surplus, possibilities
Ten Material wealth and security, boredom, passing of time, in need of a challenge/being motivated/expanding one’s horizons
Swords Ace Invoked, “man-made” power, channeling power and thoughts, projects, ideas, something you conceive of in your mind or are thinking about
Two Not knowing what to do, crossroads, not seeing the best solution
Three Heartache, missing, having lost something or someone dear to you, betrayal
Four Rest, pause, break, needing to be away from everything and everyone, being alone, loneliness
Five Disappointment, things did not go as planned, expectations were not fulfilled, feeling of abandonment
Six Journey, half-way there, a challenge but you already have experience, know where you are going, being on a mission, travel, things are happening or moving >< stagnation
Seven Intentions are not clear, uncertainty, there is more to a situation than meets the eye, the unseen or unknown, secret
Eight Tunnel vision, blindness, captive in a situation
Nine Misery, powerlessness, irritation
Ten Feeling depressed, overwhelmed, incapable; hitting rock bottom; it can’t get any worse than this; negative feelings but exaggeration

The Power of NOW (part 2)

Ok, so how to shut off your mind?

What I do when I want to consciously stop my mind from interfering with my soul, is I lie down on my bed (or sofa), put in ear plugs and just listen to my own breath and concentrate on it. I feel each breath enter my body, go down my lungs (making my belly rise) and go up through my throat again (making my belly deflate again) and out again through my mouth/nose.

Any thoughts that rush in are just observed as being thoughts, and rather than actively pushing them away, I simply focus on my breathing again. This takes some practice. ..ok it takes a LOT of practice. You may not always be consciously aware that you are “thinking”, but sooner or later you will remember that you were trying not to think. So then just focus on your breathing again.

After a while this will become second nature, and you’ll experience less difficulty in doing this.

So when your mind has given up its attempts to take over your consciousness, you may begin to see images, feel certain feelings/sensations, hear certain things. Do not analyze them, simply observe them and leave them be. At a certain point in this exercise you’ll no longer have the urge to analyze what you’re experiencing. Your mind will no longer wonder what the heck is going on.

You are now in paradise, free from the burden of every-day mind-activity. Your soul rejoices. You are now living in the NOW, being all there is.

Conversing with the Cards – The Major Arcana: The Hierophant

The Hierophant


by Morgana Moonfire

Impressions: A man dressed in a white tunic holds a sword in one hand and a wand in the other. His arms are crossed and he stands in water. In front of him are three naked children in the water. He looks at them but does not smile. They are secluded by a fence and fruit-bearing trees.

Whether the man is the father or the teacher of the children is quite irrelevant. He is a teacher nonetheless and he takes his task seriously. Whether his apprentices are children or not is equally irrelevant. He teaches them discipline as well as the study matter itself and he expects that they too take their apprenticeship seriously. The teacher imposes order on them and demands their full attention and respect. The children must be fully aware of the importance of the art, skill or knowledge they are to master, of the role they are to play and are being prepared for. Each of them is meant to fulfil a certain part of considerable magnitude and so it is imperative that they are already conscious of what is expected of them at an early age. When they complete their training, they will walk their separate paths but they may continue to support and aid each other as they have done throughout the learning process. In addition, they will most probably continue to receive their teacher’s guidance if they wish it.

As students or simply as individuals involved in an important learning process, we are required to take our learning serious, to manifest ourselves as humble and disciplined students. If we are to succeed we must be severe on ourselves and be fully dedicated to the cause. Yet we are never alone and even if we opt for self-learning, there are still many other like-minded persons out there who are committed to the same journey. It is not uncommon and it is even advisable for those with similar interests to support and learn from each other. Regardless of the other persons’ age or experience, you can learn something valuable from everyone if you would only open your mind. Age in general is insignificant as learning is a life-long affair. It is never too late to get started. This card may also indicate that guidance or advice is readily available to you in whatever situation you may find yourself. This will normally be in the form of a wise person, who takes on the role of a teacher or father figure, and who will willingly assist you with the issue, question or concern that you are occupied with.

Key words and sentiments: authority, teacher, discipline, order, tradition, guidance, advice, training, preparing yourself, dedication, learn from others, ambition, destiny, it is never too late to learn.

Week 8 – Catnip

Catnip (Nepeta cataria)

by Morgana Moonfire

Catnip is also known by the names Catmint, Catnep and Catnap, Catrup, Cat’s wort, Field balm, Cat, Nip and Nepeta. The genus name, Nepeta cataria, comes from Nepeti, a Roman town where this herb was first cultivated.

The herb is named catnip because of the peculiar behaviour of cats when they get a whiff of this feline favourite. It does not cause such behavior in humans but, like many botanical, it has many excellent nutritional properties.

Catnip is called a Woman’s Love Herb because it is said to make women enticing and charming to make men ready and increase their nature. For this reason, women use it to aid in bringing about relations.

Associations: Venus, Libra, Cancer, the Moon (Tarot), the element of water, Aengus Óg, Áine and Bast, its gender is feminine.

  • Catnip, if grown near the house or hung over the door will attract good spirits and good luck.
  • Early American settlers believed catnip would make kind people mean and so the dried roots were fed to hangmen and executioners.
  • Catnip is a Druid sacred herb.
  • All through history, this herb has been used in humans to produce a sedative effect. Traditional herbalists have treated other conditions like cancer, toothache and corns with catnip.
  • Catnip does not just intoxicate domestic felines: large cats, such as lions and jaguars, are also susceptible to its effects.
  • Tradition says that growing catnip near your home will attract luck and good spirits.
  • Catnip is a perennial or biennial herb of the mint family.
  • Catnip and savory will discourage flea beetles and bean beetles on your bean plants.
  • In addition to cats, bees are also fond of catnip.
  • Catnip leaves were brewed as tea and before Chinese tea was imported.

Catnip can reach up to 3 feet high.

Catnip grows on banks and waste places in northern temperate regions around the world.

Catnip is easy to grow. They grow well with little attention and will withstand crowding.

è They thrive in sun or partial shade.

è They prefer average, well drained soil over rich soils although will grow in most soils. So fertilizer is not usually required, except in the poorest of soils. A little fertilizer is recommended at planting time and a couple of times a year to promote maximum growth.

è After the plants have grown a few inches, pinch back the shoots to promote bushy growth. It will first bloom in mid summer. After harvest, trim back the plants again. With luck, you will get three harvests in a season.

Propagation

  • Catnip can be grown by seed.

Sow seeds into your garden in the spring.

Space seedlings or thin plants to 20″ apart.

  • Propagation by division

1. Dig up the plant on a cloudy day, keeping as much of the roots intact as possible. Remove or shake off any loose soil so you can easily see the crown and roots.

2. Divide the plant into smaller pieces using the knife or garden fork to cut through the crown and roots. (You might need two garden forks to pry apart roots of extremely overgrown clumps.) Each division should have at least two to five vigorous shoots with ample roots attached. Remove any diseased or discolored portions.

3. Cut back the top growth to about 6 inches or half the plant’s height.

4. Replant or pot up your new plants immediately and water well.

Planting

* When growing catnip, allow for plenty of space. Catnip are aggressive growers and will overcrowd nearby plants in your herb garden if allowed.

Harvesting

Harvest the leaves before and while flowering. Wait until the plant is 8 to 10 inches tall before harvesting. By that stage, the leaves will be large and mature.

Gather catnip for drying in late summer. The harvest process will depend on how you will be drying the catnip. If drying flat, then snip or pinch off the top leaves. If hanging the catnip to dry, snip off long stems.

Storing

Dry the leaves before storing them.

  • Drying can be achieved by placing the snipped leaves on a screen to allow the air to dry the leaves, which can take several weeks.
  • Another option to dry flat is to place the leaves on a baking sheet in the oven on the lowest setting; it can take up to 6 hours for the leaves to dry.
  • To dry the leaves by hanging them, secure bunches with string and hang them in a dry location.

* The leaves are dry when you can easily crumble them with your fingers.

  • Crumble the dried leaves and place them in an air-tight plastic container or glass jar.
  • The leaves can also be stored in a sealed plastic bag in the freezer.

Parts used: leaves

Magickal uses

v  Love: used for luck in love affairs.

  • Traditionally used in conjunction with rose petals to bring loving relationships that last forever.
  • Use in love sachets or add a small amount to herbal teas. If you carry catnip in a flannel bag, the man you want will be attracted to you like a cat to catnip.
  • To attract a new lover: use it in an herbal bath, sprinkle it at the 4 corners of the bed or burn it with incense.
  • Soak catnip leaves in whiskey and sprinkle the liquid on your doorstep for 21 days, starting on the full moon.

v  Happiness

è Use catnip while calling on Aengus Óg, the god of love, to bring happiness and love.

v  Cat magick

  • Give it to your cat to create a psychic bond.

v  Animal contacts, familiars

v  Beauty

  • In order to experience beauty and clarity, call on the goddess Áine while using.

v  Large dried leaves are powerful markers for magickal books.

v  Courage (smudging)

  • Chewed by warriors for fierceness in battle.

v  Friendship (smudging)

Medicinal uses

Catnip is a sedating/stimulating herb which is rich in volatile oils and which can also tonify or nourish. The primary chemical constituents of catnip include essential oils (carvacrol, citronella, geraniol, nepetol, nepetelactone, pulegone, thymol), iridoids and tannins. It also contains iron, selenium, potassium, manganese, chromium and moderate amounts of other minerals & vitamins.

Catnip has a substance called nepetalactone, which is similar to valerian. The herb is anti-inflammatory and has mild antibiotic properties. In addition, it relieves stress or pain (anodyne) and is diaphoretic (increases sweating).

v  Stimulates the appetite

v  When smoked, leaves give mild euphoria with no harmful effects.

v  Hair rinse for scalp irritations

v  Controls and reduces fever and will help soothe feverish chills

v  Catnip contains antispasmodic properties that are ideal for treating abdominal and menstrual cramping, as well as chronic coughing.

Carminative herb: aids digestion, constipation, calms upset stomachs, relieves diarrhea, flatulence and indigestion

  • Particularly good for children with upset stomachs in a very mild infusion.
  • Bath herb for colic
  • Catnip tea for upset stomach, colic, spasms, flatulence and acid.

v  It is a stronger nervine (relaxing herb): Catnip is good for nervous conditions, relieves stress, good for anxiety and nervousness, induces relaxation: drink catnip or chamomile tea (infants or adults)

  • Soothes nervous headaches
  • Bath herb for stress

v  Epilepsy

v  Eyewash for inflammation, allergies and bloodshot eyes

v  Hiccup remedy

v  Catnip’s antibiotic and astringent properties are also beneficial for treating colds and bronchial infections (chronic bronchitis): keeps colds at bay; catnip tea helps reduce mucus

v  The flu

v  For a stimulating state of mind

v  Relaxes the muscles

v  Heals minor tissue injuries

  • To treat minor mishaps that occur in the garden, press some crushed catnip leaves on cuts and scrapes until you are able to get inside to wash and bandage your injury.

v  Helpful for pain: soothes headaches and reduces migraine pain

  • Use as a poultice for toothache
  • Bath herb for teething
  • As a compress or poultice for pain, sprains and bruises
  • Salve for hemorrhoids

v  Liniment for arthritis and rheumatism

v  Enema to cleanse the colon

v  Compress or poultice for insect bites

v  Boils and carbuncles

  • Poultices made of ground flaxseed, peach tree leaves, catnip leaves or roasted onion and applied hot will draw out the infection.

v  Aids sleep, insomnia, ensuring a restful sleep

  • Sweet dreams and peaceful nights: place catnip under your pillow.
  • Healing dreams: drink tea-potion made from catnip or mint

CAUTION

*** Avoid during pregnancy!

*Catnip is a gentle herb and makes a suitable drink for children.

Other uses

v  Catnip prevents mosquito bites

  • Undiluted catnip oil can provide up to two hours of insect repellant properties when applied directly to the skin. Research in 2001 showed that catnip oil repels mosquitoes ten times better than DEET. Further research showed that depending on the species of mosquito, protection lasted for up to four hours. The active ingredient in catnip oil is called nepetalactone.

***Nepetalactone can cause skin irritations to those with sensitivities, so a patch test is recommended.

v  The root and leaf scent, mint with cat pheromone overtones, intoxicates cats and repels rats and flea beetles.

Catnip medicine

  • Catnip tea can be used effectively as a drink and also as an enema.
    • To make catnip tea, use 2 teaspoons of the dried herb per cup of boiling water.

Steep for 10 to 20 minutes; then strain and drink. *Do not boil catnip as boiling dissipates the herb’s healing oil.

Drink up to 3 cups daily.

Catnip and rosemary mosquito chasing oil

Makes about 2 cups.

2 cups catnip, stemmed

1 cup rosemary, cut in 6-inch sprigs

2 cups grapeseed oil or any light body-care oil

Roll herbs lightly with a rolling pin and pack into a clean jar. Cover with oil, seal jar and place in a cool, dark cupboard for two weeks.

Shake jar lightly every day or so for two weeks. Strain into a clean jar, seal and refrigerate for up to 8 months unused.

To use, rub on exposed skin.

Herbal Tea Recipe for Aches and Pain.

1 Tablespoon – White Willow Bark.

1 Tablespoon – Catnip

Put into a Tea ball and steep in boiling hot water for five minutes.

Drink as hot as you can stand it; then lie down for a nap.

Dragons

Can create a psychic bond with certain dragons.

Dragons: Water, Earth, Light, Mountains, Guardian

Sources

Elemental Healing

Making and Using Dreampillows by Leslie Ravenwing

Garden Necromancy: Summoning Spirits ~Source Unknown~

Herbal Dreamcraft

Use Essential Oils to Prevent Mosquito Bites: Catnip, Clove, Neem and Lemon Oil by Melanie Grimes, citizen journalist

http://members.aol.com/fadedone33/herbs.html

Be Your Own Herbal Expert – Part 1: an article by Susun S. Weed

Herbal Remedies Solutions – Herbal Tea Remedies

Niche Website

Herbal Remedies for Sleeping Disorders by Pete Sharpe

Herbal Teas by Gillie Whitewolf

Herbs for every Sign! by Kim Rogers-Gallagher

How to Harvest, Dry, and Store Herbs from: “Harvesting and Drying Herbs” by James C Schmidt and Dianne Noland

Sacred Herbs Of The Goddess

The Healing Power Of Herbs by May Bethel.

Herbs That Repel Bugs

Using Herbs Simply and Safely: an article by Susun S. Weed

Herbs and their Magickal Properties-Very Long & Detailed List

Bewitched | July 6, 2010 at 2:17 pm | Tags: herbs, magickal, properties, roots, wild | Categories: Herbs | URL: http://wp.me/pYkp9-4F

Water Based Preparations by Susun Weed

Smudging Herbs by Chrissy from ‘Smudging with Sage & Other Herbs’ from the Flourescent Ranch in Grand Mesa, CO.

http://www.iampanic ked.com/anxiety- articles/ herbs-for- anxiety.htm

Herbal cures by Lady Edenbolake

http://www.herbalre mediesinfo. com/pregnancy. Html

http://www.herbcomp anion.com/ Health/Clean- Deep-Clean- Sweet-with- Herbs.aspx

Clean Deep, Clean Sweet with Herbs by Sandy Maine

March The Herb Companion (magazine)

http://seattlepi. nwsource. com/nwgardens/ 90412_lovejoy10. Shtml

Why Not Grow Some Mosquito Repellent of Your Own?

Aromathyme.com

Healing by the Moon by Rachel Raymond

Cough Relief

Farmer’s Almanac

http://www.alizons- psychic-secrets. com/magical- potions.html

Dancing with Dragons, pgs.238-256 by D.J. Conway

A Guide to Propagating Herbs by Kris Wetherbee (The Herb Companion)

Lady Becky

http://www.gardenersnet.com/herbs/catnip.htm

How to Dry and Store Catnip | eHow.com http://www.ehow.com/how_5735047_dry-store-catnip.html#ixzz10SCVE87E

Week 7 – Rooibos

Rooibos Aspalathus linearis

It is also called Red Bush Tea or Red Tea.

Despite the popularity of the tea, earlier, there was some confusion over its name. However, this has been settled now and it has been agreed that henceforth the plant would be generally known as Aspalathus linearis. Occasionally, the rooibos plant is also called Borbonia pinifolia Marloth or Aspalathus contaminate.

  • Rooibos tea is not a true tea since it doesn’t use leaves from the Camellia consensus plant and comes from the South African shrub Aspalathus linearis.
    • Today the red bush tea or rooibos is the most well-liked hot brew in South Africa.
    • Rooibos is an indigenous shrub, which grows exclusively on the slopes of the Cedarberg Mountains in the Western Cape province of South Africa and has been used by traditional healers of the area for centuries. This is a traditional medicine for two indigenous groups that are native to South Africa–the Bushmen and the Hottentots.
      • 300 years ago European explorers discovered the “Red Tea”. Then, in the early 1900’s, the healing powers of South Africa’s ‘Miracle Tea’ became apparent, and acclaimed as a treasured elixir for the mind, body and spirit
      • Rooibos is Afrikaans for “red bush” and is pronounced as “RoyBoss”
      • Rooibos, also known as “Red Bush” tea, is an herbal tea native to South Africa. Unlike most teas (such as black, green and oolong), which come from camellia plants, rooibos comes from the Aspalathus linearis plant. Its leaves are green, but when oxidized the leaves turn red, giving the tea a distinctive appearance. The main use of this herb is brewed tea, which has a variety of health benefits.
      • Rooibos is a member of the legume family of plants. It is a shrub that belongs to the Fabaceae family.

Harvesting

The Aspalathus linearis plant is harvested in late summer or during autumn.

Storing

After harvesting, the long stalks of the plant are chopped into smaller parts. The cut stems along with the leaves are then moisturized, crushed and then left to ferment for some time. After the fermentation, the substance is left out in the sun to be dehydrated. The end product is the red bush tea that is prepared like the common or ordinary tea.

Parts used: The leaves and twigs are used, after being cut and bruised to allow enzymatic oxidation and then dried.

Medicinal uses

Rooibos is a mildly astringent herb (because of the tannins) with restorative properties and it is antispasmodic. It contains polyphenols, shown to have anticarcinogenic, anti-allergic and anti-inflammatory and antiviral qualities.

It is an extremely nutritious herb, containing a wide variety of vitamins and minerals to keep the body healthy. Rooibos contains Vitamin C; Alphahydroxy Acid; calcium, manganese and fluoride for strong teeth and bones; iron, which prevents anemia; zinc, copper, potassium, magnesium and more than 37 natural or common antioxidants.

v  Tooth decay (due to high fluoride content)

v  Insomnia

  • The beverage prepared with the herb helps in stimulating sleep. Research has shown that rooibos induces sleep by influencing the metabolism (the process by which ingested food is transformed into energy) of acetylcholine (a substance known to be a transmitter of nerve impulses) in the brain and thwarting the discharge of neurons responsible for wakefulness. In some other way, rooibos provokes sleepiness by obstructing the reactions of the hormones that lead to pain and irritation or inflammation. * However, here is a word of caution. The tea prepared with rooibos should be used for this purpose only after consultation and consent of the physician.

v  Cramps

v  Heartburn

v  Beneficial in the treatment of high blood pressure

v  Nervous tension, mild depression, anxiety

v  Diabetes mellitus

  • Rooibos can help to control blood sugar levels

v  Atherosclerosis

v  Cataracts

v  Liver diseases

v  Syphilis

  • The plant is widely recommended as a supplementary medication while treating syphilis as it inhibits common inflammation (swelling and irritation) and reduces pain. However, the herb does not cure the disease.

v  Constipation, diarrhea (because of the tannins), digestive distress and cramping

v  Asthma

v  Ulcers

v  Aging (because of the antioxidants)

v  Helps build strong bones

v  High cholesterol (helping to prevent heart disease)

v  Vomiting

v  Rooibos is also effectual in treating mental disorders related to old age.

v  Rooibos may help relieve insomnia

v  HIV

  • A couple of studies conducted by Japanese scientists have found that rooibos is active against or combats the human immunodeficiency virus. The polysaccharide (a complex carbohydrate) amalgams present in rooibos thwarts the HIV from sticking to its intended or target cells in the body.

v  Rooibos is given to babies with colic, he herb is anti-spasmodic: it relieves cramps and stomach aches

  • Many mothers use this property of the tea to ease colic and stomach discomfort in their infants by mixing the tea with milk and bottle-feeding it to their children. The soothing properties of the tea may also pass along through breast milk.

v  Allergies and hay fever

  • Research has shown that it is possible that rooibos impedes the release of histamine, an organic derivative of ammonia discharged by immune cells producing allergic reactions. In fact, the release of histamine is said to be liable for nasal congestion as well as stomach disorders during allergic effects and anxiety. Hence, this property of rooibos makes the herb immensely beneficial for everyone suffering from food allergies and respiratory allergies.

v  Calms skin allergies and other skin complaints such as eczema

  • Brew the tea and apply it to the area with a cotton ball
  • Rooibos tea contains a variety of antioxidants and flavonoids, including alpha hydroxy acid, which help control free radicals in your body. Free radicals can lead to premature aging of the skin, so this tea can help keep your skin looking young. This benefit applies to drinking the tea, but you can also apply the tea directly to the skin; many people claim that when used this way, the tea helps prevent and treat acne, sunburn and eczema.
  • It has a soothing and healing effect on the skin.

* Rooibos is very low in oxalic acid, a compound that can cause problems for people with kidney stones, so those who suffer from this problem can drink it safely.

* The beverage does not have any unwanted effect on the body or mind.

* Rooibos tea is naturally caffeine free, which means that you can drink a cup before bed without worrying that it will keep you awake. Since it lacks caffeine, people with heart conditions and expectant mothers can safely drink this tea.

CAUTION

Like black tea, rooibos also slows down the absorption of iron from the consumed food. However, rooibos is less effective than the black tea in soaking up iron from the ingested food. Hence, people suffering from deficiency of iron and related diseases should try to avoid drinking the rooibos as well as black tea. Drinking any of the two beverages may be detrimental for their health as they are likely to further bring down the iron content in their system.

Rooibos Tea

* Contains no caffeine

* Is low in tannin (the tannins in black tea are responsible for the bitter flavour): the tannin content in the red bush tea is approximately five per cent.

*** The tea prepared with rooibos contains no stimulants and is known to be safe, mild and uncontaminated.

Normally, the dehydrated leaves and the fine stems are used as tea.

The beverage is also highly refreshing.

The tea is very mild and can be taken every day, or whenever you feel the need for an extra nutrition boost.

If you drink one to three cups a day, it can help increase your overall state of health. A spot of tea? image by Gretchen from Fotolia.com

Sandalwood & Rooibos Bath Soap

150g Pure clear unfragranced glycerine soap

5 Drops Sandalwood Fragrance

Rooibos leaves

* Gently melt the soap either in microwave or on stove top.

* Add Fragrance and sprinkle a few leaves into the melted soap.

* Give the soap a few swirls.

* Pour into soap mould. Allow to cool and demould.

* The leaves work as a great exfoliator and add colour and texture.

* Use a piece of corrugated cardboard to decorate the soap and tie it with a raffia bow.

Sources:

What is herbal medicine?

http://www.umm. edu/altmed/ articles/ herbal-medicine- 000351.htm

http://en.wikipedia .org/wiki/ Herbalism

Guide To Green Tea

How to Understand the Medicinal Uses of Rooibos Tea

By Katherine Huether, eHow Contributor

How to Understand the Medicinal Uses of Rooibos Tea | eHow.com http://www.ehow.com/how_2094552_understand-medicinal-uses-rooibos-tea.html#ixzz0zIcdV4D1

Rooibos Benefits & Uses

By StephenR, eHow Contributor

updated: July 19, 2010

Rooibos Benefits & Uses | eHow.com http://www.ehow.com/list_6750513_rooibos-benefits-uses.html#ixzz0zId2hdrE

http://www.herbs2000.com/herbs/herbs_rooibos.htm

http://www.ageless.co.za/herb-rooibos.htm

http://www.phytochemicals.info/plants/rooibos.php

http://www.theherbspiral.com/supps/herbpages/Rooibos.htm

Previous Older Entries

Copyright notice

All entered text is ©2010 of the author, unless otherwise stated.

In order to reproduce any material, permission needs to granted by the author, either Morgana Moonfire or Archangel Amitiel.

Dark Moon Circle

As a sister of the DMC, Morgana aka Funky Chicken would like to honour this wonderfully supportive circle of sisters who never hesitate to offer guidance and share their wisdom.
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.