Where the Mandrakes grow

I am currently traveling; thus away from my beloved Books :cry:
What ones I have digital copies of through my kindle, I cannot even access at present as my LCD screen on my phone has broken and I cannot repair it until Nov 1. Which is why I have created this Temporary Profile (My normal profile is @Lockhart )
As an aside, I have run across vague references to something called Ghostweed, whatever that may be. Not sure if it is sacred to Cernunnos because my references are all Elizabeth the 1st era.
quote=“violettedessorciers, post:20, topic:84038”]
Do you know if the priests consumed this plant?
I am uncertain if the priests did, but what I have garnered is that it was known to be so poisonous that Priests of Cernunnos did a special ritual when harvesting to protect themselves from it. (As with all things in history, take care as embellishment may be rife in the retelling)

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Thats very true. That reminds me of the mandrake lore where a dog is used to remove it from the ground and its scream kills the dog. Now i myself have moved my mandrakes often - i do talk to them prior and let them know its out of love and ill return them to their womb of dirt, but ive experienced no screams.

During one of the moves i snapped a pic - isnt it adorable?? lol! My sweet green child! :heart_eyes:

Have you tried looking up the poisonous plants native to the regions of cernunnos worship? And is mistletoe among his sacred plants? Now theres a poisonous one.

this is just from some pagan website, so grains of salt! lol
Mistletoe and The Druids

The ancient Druids believed mistletoe to be an indicator of great sacredness. The winter solstice, called ‘Alban Arthan’ by the Druids, was according to Bardic Tradition, the time when the Chief Druid would cut the sacred mistletoe from the Oak. The mistletoe is cut using a golden sickle on the sixth night of the new moon after the winter solstice. A cloth held below the tree by other members of the order to catch the spigs of mistletoe as they fell, as it was believed that it would have profaned the mistletoe to fall upon the ground. He would then divide the branches into many sprigs and distributed them to the people, who hung them over doorways as protection against thunder, lightning and other evils.

The Druids are thought to have believed that the berries of the mistletoe represented the sperm of the Gods. When pressed, a semen like substance issues from the white berries. Mistletoe was considered a magickal aphrodisiac. Girls standing under a sprig of mistletoe were asking for a bit more than a kiss, it seems.

The plant in old folklore is called Allheal, used in folk medicine to cure many ills, and indeed the Druids considered the mistletoe to be a sacred plant and believed it had miraculous properties which could cure illnesses, serve as an antidote against poisons, ensure fertility and protect against the ill effects of witchcraft. When taken as a form of diluted tea, it was thought as a curative for everything from infertility to epilepsy. (WARNING, this plant is highly toxic when ingested. You should seek expert advice before using Mistletoe in any form.)”

Ill consult my own books. I do have quite a growing library on herblore as it so happens, but i havent read much on mistletoe if im honest, or if i have, the information hasnt stayed in my head much. When i think of mistletoe, i always think of Loki.

The name ghostweed strikes at my memory - i swear ive read something before, but ill see what i can find.

The mistletoe info I have run across, I believe said something about it being used as an inducer of visions, but I never heard it anywhere else, and I had heard that the book it came from was not considered to be an excellent source: The 21 Lessons of Merlin, I think it was.

I wonder - i couldnt find anything on mistletoe causing visions, only being harvested following a vision. :confused:

if it was so poisonous they had to protect themselves from it, it could be aconite, henbane, or belladonna maybe - i have neither of these three yet but ive read one needs to wear heavy gloves in handling, especially aconite, though ive never heard of those three associated with cernunnos.

I have some new books im dying to read regarding more plant folklore and practices. if i come across anything regarding cernunnos i will let you know!

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Make sure it is Angelica Archangelica you bought, not the other ones. Only this one contains the healing abilities. The one that grows wild in the swedish/norwegian forests is mostly Angelica Sylvestris, it doesn’t have any known healing powers.

Also, I really like your journal :heart:

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Thank you for the word of caution, Helena!

The mistakes i have made with herbs in the past, ive tried to ensure i learn from. i do consider strictlymedicinals a reputable source for the proper species of plant, but its always important to be wary of the imposters!! Thats the trickiest part with dealing with the plants - they can be deceptive!

Yes. It’s not only imposters, there are so many subspecies that you really have to make sure you get the right one :sweat_smile:
It’s really nice to meet another herbalist. I have been collecting plants and making healing tinctures and oils with my mother for years. Always good to learn new stuff^^.

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Yes!! Like I cant get over how many verbenas there are! Or how infuriating it is when nurseries call centhaurus ruber “valerian,” like just carry true valerian! its beautiful! And its an absolute pleasure! i grew up with herbal medicine, and i love me some tinctures, teas and oils. I think i favor infusions mostly, but thats my impatience. I want to start percolating tinctures soon - i saw you can make a cheap one with a wine bottle!

I havent seen a lot of herbalists on this forum so far, so im just delighted youre here :grin:

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I just always put the parts in alcohol and leave them in the sun for a few weeks, then in the dark for a month or more.

Then I put the tincture in those little bottles

Those are my most important three. Primula veris, Tanacetum parthenium and Alchemilla.

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i have not worked with feverfew or ladys mantle yet. theyre on my list.

im pleased to see the primrose - and youre using that beautiful old world woodland kind! i had a batch of seeds, but i failed to get them to germinate this year - granted i chose to scatter them, but this spring i think ill start them inside first, unless you have any tips!

Our garden is full of primrose, has always been there.
You probably know it already, but still another warning (I just have to :sweat_smile: ) be careful with feverfew, it’s very dangerous for pregnant people.

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Warnings are always good! - i feel that. i would hate if someone was harmed by an herb whether from
reading something id written or on my recommendation. im still more so into being my own guinea pig - i rarely share, and if i do, i stick with family or very close friends.

Once i gave a friend a spell that had lustral water with leaves of rue, not infused by heat, but still! i told him if its in contact with your skin stay the hell out of the sun for a while! i would never want someone to be harmed by my beauties - unless i was doing baneful work, which i rarely do these days.

Yes it’s important to take ploants seriously. Many people think “Ah it’s just natural medicine, it can’t harm you.” Bullshit. One wrong leaf can kill you. Belladonna, Aconitum…
Feverfew is an abortifacient. Only a few drops of a well made tincture can cause it. I only give my tincture to very few people, when I’m sure they don’t abuse it.

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Yes! Aside from the mystical components, i try to read if there are any scientific studies regarding the bioactive compounds. And thats the thing! So many pharmaceuticals are based on isolating the plant compounds! theyre there!

The trouble can be that they can vary with growing environment. Belladonna? Unpredictable! I did find Harold Roths “The Witching Herbs” super informative on that matter - more alkaloids produced when the plant encounters damage as a defense mechanism, but even then - those solanaceous plants are so treacherous! I think i love them partly because of that.

Herbalism is such a rabbit hole, and i dont think even a whole lifetime of practice will give all the knowledge. theres always something new to be learned - which only makes it better. As such, i will always welcome new information or correction. :black_heart:

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Better wrong than dead! lol

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Yes, it’s so exciting, and also plants are just so beautiful :smile:
Just make sure to write all your gained knowledge down, don’t let it be lost.

And yes, that’s true. Natural sources and not always reliable enough for pharmaceutical use, that’s why they started to imitate them.

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My last harvest of Angelica Archangelica before winter, gathered in Michaels name, with a newfound understanding of his spirit, and a renewed welcome into my life - thanks to this forum. :black_heart::blush:

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My newest project: The Alraune

The concept of the Alraune has caused me to reconsider whether i will pull my mandrakes or not, though other roots are said to suffice - i may even utilize the Angelica root.

I found an indepth working regarding the creation of an Alraune here, with indications of the Alraune appearing even as far back as the greek Argonautica with Medea, whom i consider a legendary witch of inspiration.

I consider the mandragora to have inherent power and spirit on its own, but this working, along with its many references, has given me a great deal of food for thought regarding the ritual i posted prior by Jean-Baptiste Pitois, The History and Practice of Magic utilizing the root of bryony.

consider the bryony is planted near a deceased’s grave (invoking the spirit into the root), and its fed milk (where three bats were drowned). The dead mans winding sheet - the ritual of the Alraune mimicking a funeral, the root placed in a coffin and fed regularly. How fascinating!

This is something i will make variation to, and i will spend this winter in study, with ambitions to manifest it come this spring. Wish me luck!


“For whom the dogs bay.”

An epithet which i have great fondness for, and one which, inevitably, summons the barking in the distance. As if to say “she comes, she comes.”

I was never a dog person until i was - i actually dont even have a dog of my own, only cats. A friend once called his dogs traitors, after having met me on only a handful of occasions, theyd lay at my feet, sit beside me and lean into me deep, leaving him lonely without their company. When i looked into their eyes, i see their noble spirits - majestic, loyal, and ferocious. “i know you,” they say. Its not the first or last time its been remarked “my dog never does that… not even with me.” when they lay out on me or near me, sprawled and vulnerable, nuzzling their faces against my sides and hands.

Lost dogs find their way to me, on three occasions in the last year, turning up on the stoop lost, but immediately at ease. An owner brought her dog to the neighborhood for a walk. I was returning home, and when i turned around after opening the door, i nearly gasped from shock as i saw him behind me, wagging, looking up expectedly - i know you, his eyes said. thats what they all say, when their gazes meet mine. Another dog walker says his dogs fight with him after my visits with them on the street until ive gone back inside. They wont let him move on until im gone. “They dont do that for anyone else,” he says.

I wonder if this sort of thing is common among those devoted to Hecate.

“Hecate, for whom the dogs bay.” Its a lovely epithet. And theres no love like a dogs love.

Im disappointed in Queen of Hell by Mark Alan Smith. Im grateful for its pdf version and not having a spend a great deal of money on it.

The book consists of entirely what i consider UPG, with very little information on Hekate as she was known by the ancient Greeks, Carians or Anatolians. While the author certainly pays tribute to her immense power as a Goddess, it reads more like Luciferian Wicca, than a true pathworking of Hekate.

The illustrations and seals are of interest. Pieces of the ritual work have power in them - if i utilize anything, it would stripping down and dissecting the rituals and saving useful components for my practice.

While i personally have felt a calling to be marked with a symbol of Hekate, the thought of an initiation consisting of orgies and her menstruating all over me is baffling, and completely outside of VG as well as my own UPG regarding my work with Hekate.

Its the little things. An immediate eyebrow arch moment occurred with the authors obsession with sandalwood, then projected upon Hekate. Archeological study of her altars shows the most frequent offering to Hekate in the realm of incense was actually storax, derived from the sweetgum trees of asia minor - liquidambar orientalis. But maybe her ancient following had it all wrong, and she loves sandalwood best! its not to say its not an acceptable scent for such a goddess, but her preferred? i disagree.

I do not agree with the author that she is the mother of lucifer, or the strong assertions of her being a “sex crazed” goddess. On a personal note, Ive never experienced any desire from her for sexual energy or offerings, and her first devotees were eunichs, so how dedicated is he? jk. Though i will comment mythology indicates she was virginial or a goddess of few consorts. i like the idea of her birthing Scylla, but thats not necessarily so.

Ultimately, the book reads like the authors personal sexual fantasy, with Hekate as the focal point. Disappointing. I wish him the best in his devotions to the goddess we both love, but do not find his “grimoire” very useful in my Hecatean practice.