Todays blog is another break from the Defining My Craft series as I have already covered Chalices previously.
The school Summer Holidays are a flaky time of year and all my normal writing routines have been thrown out of wack. I’m chuffed that I’ve managed to keep up to the blog and not given into skipping weeks. Today I am skipping the subject but life and the series have thrown up interesting lines of enquiry and research to bridge the gaps, as with today’s post about the Nine Herbs Charm. In case you’ve never heard of this Anglo Saxon poem you can read it in full here and learn more about the Nine Herbs here.
Okay so this post isn’t going to be as poetic as the original Charm, rather it was born from some inspiration I had whilst writing a blog on spell boxes ( link to follow )
As I was writing and developing a general purpose spell box for all spell types I recalled the Nine Herb Charm and wondered if there was a modern equivalent. The number of herbs fit nicely with the subject and I could half remember reading something more modern used for teaching herb associations. Unfortunately after much searching I was unable to track anything down, if it indeed ever existed, and I decided I wouldn’t assault everyone’s sensibilities by trying to write my own. But the seeds were sown and the idea of a blend of nine kitchen herbs for my spell box stuck.
After much Web surfing I came up with nine herbs which are easily found in the kitchen or supermarket which can be used singularly or in combination in most common craft operations, such as those relating to finances, relationships, protection etc. For my purpose I wanted to use in my general purpose ‘development box’, to subtly aid my magical workings as they work on my behalf.
Money, Luck, Healing, Compassion, Communication, Determination, Energy Fertility, Gain, Love, Renewal Aphrodisiac.
Protection, Clairvoyancy, Wisdom, Exorcism, Cleansing, Psychic Powers, Healing, Purification, Strength.
Success, Healing, Clairvoyancy, Protection, Love, Money, Lust, Mental Focus.
Protection, exorcism, love, money, good luck, Visions, cleansing
Love, lust, sex, money, success, personal power.
Marjoram (aka Oragarno)
Happiness, love, money, protection, Clairvoyancy, psychic protection, tranquility, cleansing, courage, dreams (of love), harmony, success
Protection, love, fedelity, mental powers, exorcism, purification, healing, sleep, youth. Burn to purify and cleanse.
Healing, wisdom, protection, prosperity, money
Love, Lust, mental focus, money, healing, Luck, sleep and dreaming.
Why Nine Herbs?
Numerology is a concept that often crops up in the creation of magical concoctions, at least in mine. In numerology numbets have numerous meaning and such things can be incorporated into your spells by using a particular number of components. Personally the I work on the principles that three, and multiple of three within the master numbers (0-9) are divine numbers.
Three represents the Goddess as triform.
Six (3×2) represents the Sun and by extension the God Head.
Nine (3×3) is Goddess energy made manifest.
I’ll give you a quick overview of the associations of the Master Numbers (except 0)
1: A grounding number, representing the self and immediate environment. Also represents the Universal Life Force which unites us all.
2: Polarity and duality, representing balance and relationships between people.
3: The magic number, represents triplicates such as the triple Goddess; Earth, Sea and Sky; Physical, Mental and Spiritual etc.
4: Relates to the four elements – earth, air, fire and water and the four cardinal directions. A number of balance linked to creativity and emotion.
5: The pentagram; represents the four elements and the quintessence amongst other meanings. Represents the physical world as we experience it through our five senses. Often related to struggles.
6: Related to sun energy and the masculine. Associated with security and responsibility. Sometimes associated with the God.
7: Related to lunar energy (visible lunar cycle), femininity, and workings related to intuition and wisdom. Sometimes associated with the Goddess.
8: Divine message and communication in general. On its side the number 8 becomes the infinity symbol.
9: Nine is three times three, which makes it a triply powerful number. Associated with goddess energy, growth, increase and completion.
So why did I chose nine herbs?
Well although my spell box is not immediately associated with any deity it is designed to increase and multiply the blessings contained within and the numerology of nine fits with this purpose. Also, it never hurts to refer to Goddess energies, especially when I am the devotee of a Goddess associated with the numbers three and nine.
Making The Blend
The ratio should be 1:1 across the board so your measurements will reflect the amount you want at the end of the day. In my case a ‘goodly pinch’ was sufficient to create a small pot.
Handle each herb individuall, focusing on its properties and charging it before adding it to the blend. Once they are all combined stir it with your dominant hand in a clockwise direction to further charge the mix.
Now its ready to use and sprinkle as appropriate.
There are tons of websites and books with comprehensive herb lists. If you’re interested in learning more about herbs and their magical uses check out Herbal Riot or pick up a copy of Culpepper’s Complete Herbal or Cunningham’s Encyclopaedia of Magical Herbs Similarly there is a lot of information on Numerology out there but I particularly recommend Patti’s post at About.com