How is a Witches Stang Used and Why?

By Isabella @TheWandCarver

Instagram:  @thewandcarver

If you have visited our Etsy shop, you have probably seen a stang or two being sold there.  Perhaps you wonder a bit about what they are and why they are used.  That is normal because not every witch walks the hedge path – which, by the way, is translated in many different ways I’ve seen from my online travels and many are not correct.

d7fcf129def870e5e1c5312e22f4e313--hedge-witch-dark-gothic

Author and Artisit Unknown 

Firstly, a Hedge witch is usually a necromancer, or at least one who practises astral travel for his or her personal reasons.  As explained in a past blog Necromancy – It Isn’t a Dirty Word Anymore, necromancy has nothing to do with literally raising the dead [as in re-animating dead bodies] as it did in the past.  It may have done centuries or so ago, but today’s necromancer is generally happy to only reconnect with his or her ancestors.  I say “reconnect” because the blood of our ancestors runs deep in our veins whether we are hedge witches or not.  If at any time in your life you have felt a burning desire to visit a particular country or feel compelled by a certain culture, or even feel a propensity to live in a different century altogether, you very probably are being asked to do so by a long-ago ancestor of yours.  Some of us are much more sensitive to this than others… why, I do not know.  All I know is, my ancestors have run me through a gamut of interests in my life that often-made little sense – until I started visiting them and listening.  Then, about fifteen years ago I began genealogy.  The going was rather slow in the beginning and I could only get to about five generations deep into my past.  Since then, I am now back to 30 AD in one line [the one where I discovered I’m the 28th great-granddaughter of King Henry I and Queen Matilda of Scotland – but then, most every one of you are probably related to them and all!  – and there are still lines where I can’t get much deeper than the 14th great-grandparents.  But there is a point to be made here.  Without going over the top explaining, there were many things I inherently knew without being told.  I always felt them since a very early age.  My parents or grandparents did not tell me these things, I just knew. Still, I had no way of understanding how I knew until I focussed my path into necromancy and hedge witchery and genealogy, which gave me my proof.

Elm Witches Stang 3

upper part of Elm stang ~ photo by i.macy

Now, how do we use a stang and why?  Perhaps more why to start… A stang, is, unlike a wand [although it can be used as a wand] is forked in representation of the Horned God [like, say, Cernunnos or Baphomet].  Many times, a stang is more like a staff, longer than the ones we create for sale and you will often see depictions of them with a candle between the forks or tines.  That is because Hecate assisted Demeter in her search for Persephone, guiding her through the night with flaming torches. Any wood can be used for a stang… many prefer Ash because Yggdrasill was/is Ash.  But I feel for the shorter stangs used for necromancy/Hedge witchery, woods can be chosen to the personal tastes of the witch.  And, because Hecate is the goddess of magic, witchcraft, the night, moon, ghosts, and necromancy I try to use a wood which also matches the occasion and resonates with Hecate.  Our newest stang is made from Elm wood which is more than perfect for this reason.  “Because Elm’s and Yew’s mythology are twinly bound to Death and the Underworld” is what I wrote in my blog called The Magick of Elm.  Yew would also be a very good wood to create a stang from.  You may also find  that we sell a Magnolia stang.  Sounds a bit lightweight for such a heavy journey, I’m sure you’re thinking. Yes, there is certainly a method to my madness here.  Magnolia is profoundly efficient for spiritual opening.  And, you must be spiritually open to allow yourself to cross over during a hedge walk.  Magnolia is also a stress and fear reliever which can come in handy during a hedge walk.  I added thirteen Howlite skulls because focussing on a piece of Howlite can assist in journeying outside the body and gaining insight from past lives. Then there are four small silver-plated keys as a nod to Hecate and her keys to the four Crossroads.  So, as you can see, your stang is  a tool of protection and help throughout your hedge walks and for various other instances of your necromantic life.

How do you use it?  That is largely up to you and how you feel it best benefits you.  I personally always hold it in my power hand or lay it across my lap if I’m feeling more at ease.  I’ve read that some use it as a director of energy through their soul flight and others place it beneath their knees as they sit.  I’m sure there may be many other ways of using a stang during a hedge walk and if you care to leave yours in comments, we would all love to read them.

Many thanks to all whom wander this way.  Many happy astral travels to all  and warmest blessings x

Sources

Experience

Necromancy –  It Isn’t a Bad Word Anymore, by Isabella

The Magick of Elm, by Isabella

Crystal of the Week – Howlite, by Isabella

Posted in Astral Plane, Business, Hecate, Magic, Magickal, necromancy, occult, protection, Wands, Witchcraft | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Happy Beltane 2020

By Isabella @TheWandCarver

Instagram:  @thewandcarver

Beltane at the Tor by The Telegraph

Beltane at Glastonbury Tor ~ The Telegraph

Good Beltane to all. I am sorry this won’t be a very magickal Beltane offering today as, to be honest, I only just remembered for one and for another, I have been very busy.  During this kind of lull in sales and special orders we have been working extra hard to make certain that things for our shop have been restocked and coming up with some new magickal things to offer our lovely customers.  And, it is difficult enough to do during normal times with the usual household duties needing doing as well but usual household duties have taken on a new meaning with Covid 19… it means one must clean better and more often, doesn’t it?  Not that I have been much of a cleaner in my older years… not at least as fervent as I was when younger and I could still get on my knees to scrub the entire kitchen floor, anyway!

Still, I’m not complaining because we have been blessed.  Beltane for me will be a time of thanksgiving.  We have been on lockdown for a long time and still speaking civilly to one another so far.  We have food.  We have a roof over our heads.  Our cats have food and are completely and happily ignorant of what is going on in the world.  We even have toilet roll and hand sanitiser now!  But best of all, we still have our health.  And, that is the biggest and best blessing of all.

Do you remember when you were a child and you complained about not having something? Maybe a toy like your friend’s or a car like the neighbour’s or some incidental thing that was of huge import to you but really not the end of the world?  Your mum might say, “At least you have your health”.  Yes, I got that one-line zinger more than a few times in my youth.  And now, I fully realise the great importance it has.  Nothing else in this world is as important as our health.  Without it, all the money, cars, etc are useless.  Money can’t buy you love.  And money certainly can’t buy you good health in many cases.

There are many things to be grateful for.  The weather has been, for the most part, gorgeous.  The Ozone hole over the Arctic has completely healed.  Without busses, cars, lorries, etc out on the roads so much the air is cleaner.  Most of us are probably able to order shopping in or go to supermarket and find very nearly everything they need… apart from flour, apparently.  A lot of home British Bake Off’s going on, I think! Many countries seem to be getting a handle on Covid 19 and hopefully we will learn how from them.  There is certainly nothing wrong with learning from countries who are getting it right!

There are so many heroic people in this world, I can’t possibly speak of them all.  The doctors and nurses, hospital porters, emergency services, care home carers, fire brigades, soldiers, the very people who are ill but fighting the good fight, people who stay home so as not to spread the disease and make life harder for others, most notably the hospital workers.  All of us are doing our bit to help.  It’s by doing our bit that supports the ones in the trenches.  It may seem only a little thing to stay at home and wash our hands, but it is a huge help.  If it keeps one more person from needing brave NHS Hero doctors like my friend, Angela’s son Matthew – who did contract Covid 19 and was ill but has since recuperated and  back on the front lines again, brave lad! – then isn’t it a very big thing to do after all?  Pat yourself on the back, as social distancing prevents me from doing it for you, and say to yourself, “Well done me!”

Have yourselves a lovely Beltane.  I hope you’re able to celebrate it joyfully and in good health.  Spare a kind thought for yourself, no matter your situation.  And please give thanks to all who are working so hard to make this sacrifice worthwhile.  That includes you.  Warmest blessings upon all whom this way wander x

PS, don’t forget to #ClapfortheNHS! And no matter where you live, clap for your health carers.  We could not do without them!

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The Magickal Buckthorn Tree

By Isabella @TheWandCarver

Instagram:  @thewandcarver

One of the first questions which pop up under ‘People also ask’ if you Google Buckthorn Tree is “Is Buckthorn good for anything?” .  Really? I felt quite indignant! Aren’t all trees good for something, if not multiple things? Maybe having a Druid father makes me feel indignant over that question, however, should you be one of those who might ask this, let me very patiently explain just what the Buckthorn tree is good for… and hopefully the people who do ask that question routinely will find satisfying answers here 😊

Buckthorn Flowers

Buckthorn flowers ~ woodlandtrust.org.uk

The Buckthorn [Rhamnus cathartica] tree is native to countries from the central British Isles south to Morocco, and east to Kyrgyzstan.  It is also native to Europe, northwest Africa and western Asia.  Mature trees can grow to a height of 10m, with grey-brown bark and spiny branches. The leaf buds are conical and black brown in colour, and form on long stalks. Buckthorn is dioecious, meaning male and female flowers are found on different trees. Flowers are yellow green with four petals and are pollinated by insects.  It is similar to alder buckthorn [Frangula alnus] but purging Buckthorn has opposite leaves and Alder Buckthorn has alternate leaves.

Purging Buckthorn is the main food plant of the brimstone butterfly whose caterpillars eat the leaves. Its flowers provide a source of pollen and nectar for bees and other insects, while its dense growth makes it a valuable nesting site for birds. So, yes, it is good for something, our Buckthorn!

Buckthorn Berrys

Buckthorn berries ~ woodlandtrust.org.uk

However, in many places it seems to take over wherever it lives.  Not only in the UK but mostly in the US where the common Buckthorn lives [brought over by the English back during the Great Pilgrim Migration]  is a bit of a nuisance.  Whilst birds [and sometimes mice] do eat Buckthorn berries, it’s often because it’s the only available seed source. But Buckthorn berries are not a good food source for small birds. They’re low in protein and high in carbohydrates and produce a severe laxative effect in some animals. For smaller birds, the laxative effect can even be strong enough to result in death. Adding insult to injury, the excreting birds also end up distributing the Buckthorn seeds over long distances. And, that means more Buckthorn.

Now you might see why it is called “purging Buckthorn” sometimes…

Let us talk about magickal uses now!

Magickal

Tess Whitehurst, in her book The Magic of Trees, calls the Buckthorn “a Taurus with an Aries rising” because it is a tree which is stubborn enough to see anything through.  Sometimes, in magick, we really need that kind of tenacity!

Buckthorn Seedlings

Buckthorn seedling ~ Treegrowers.co.uk 

It is said that if you wish to de-hoard your home but can’t get the energy up to do so, place a 50p coin [or a 50 cent piece in the US or anywhere else which uses 50 cent coins] at the base of a Buckthorn tree.  Then, ask permission of the Buckthorn tree to snip a branch from it, doing so with love.  Use this branch to purify the air in your home before starting the task of decluttering, moving through each room using an anti-clockwise sweeping motion. When finished, give the branch back to the earth by laying it on the ground.  Start small… clear out one small space, such as a cupboard.  Continue choosing one small space to clear as you feel more up to it until you have de-hoarded every place in your home. And, if it works as well as I think it should, you might well be motivated to clear your home much sooner than you first imagine!

Buckthorn is likewise a good ally in beginning any kind of endeavour, whether a new business, new job, or anything in which you feel you need extra “sticktoitness”.  I would suggest doing the same ritual as above, only “sweeping” yourself with the branch.  I would also snip off a small piece of the Buckthorn branch and use it as a talisman to help you keep motivated but still leave the largest piece of the branch to the earth outdoors as described above.

If beginning any kind of new project, whether for work or school, visit a Buckthorn tree at noon.  Empower a crystal [one which has powers of success is best, such as Citrine] with your intention, holding it in bright sunlight if possible.  Imagine yourself feeling joyful and successful in embarking upon this project, working faithfully until complete.  Imagine your success and the honours it might bestow, and your satisfaction of a job well done.  Empower the crystal with all the confident feelings you have and when you feel this is complete, bury the crystal at the base of the Buckthorn, then pour an entire bottle of red wine around the tree’s roots.  Yes, you can use a cheap bottle 😊

According to Dioscorides, placing branches of Buckthorn around doors and windows drives away all evil sorceries committed toward you.

According to Scott Cunningham, it is wise to carry a piece of Buckthorn with you to all  court and legal matters and as a general good luck generator.

Correspondences

Planetary:  Saturn [Mars, according to Whitehurst]

Zodiac:  Sagittarius

Gender:  Feminine [Masculine, according to Whitehurst]

Element[s]:  Water [Earth, according to Whitehurst]

Powers:  Protection, Exorcism, Wishes, Success, Legal Matters, Strength, Tenacity

Deity:  Ran,  of the Vanir

Other Names: Purging Buckthorn, Common Buckthorn

Healing

Sadly, my go-to for all things herbal/tree/spice related information, Nicholas Culpeper, has no writings of Buckthorn so no words of wisdom from him.  However, I think you may have gotten the idea above that Buckthorn is an effective laxative.

Word of Caution: If you suffer from a bleeding disorder, Buckthorn berry can be dangerous, as it slows down blood clotting. Also, if you already are taking blood pressure medication or suffer from hypotension, this berry might not be a great choice. As always, you should speak with a medical professional before making any major changes to your diet.

That said, the berries of the Buckthorn are thought to be a preventative to many diseases and problems such as aging, anti-cancer, cholesterol, circulation, diabetes control, heart health, stomach problems, vision health and a vitamin C boost.

But please, do not just pluck the berries off from a tree and start eating them.  In a case like this, once you have a thumb’s up from your GP, order a proper supplement from a reputable vitamins and supplements dealer.

Many thanks to all whom this way wander and warmest blessings x

Sources

Encyclopaedia of Magical Herbs, by Scott Cunningham

The Magic of Trees, by Tess Whitehurst

Woodlandtrust.org.uk

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From the Wortcunner’s Cabinet – Turmeric

By Isabella @TheWandCarver

Instagram:  @thewandcarver

How-To-Grow-Turmeric-4 balcony gardens

Growing Turmeric ~ photo from Balcony Gardens

For health benefits I pair a half-teaspoonful of Turmeric powder and a dash of black pepper with Ginger root tea.  Perhaps one reason they work so well together is that Turmeric is a member of the Ginger family.  Turmeric [Curcuma longa] is a flowering plant and of course, both Turmeric and Ginger are used for cooking, particularly in the Middle Eastern countries, but Turmeric is also quite magickal.  It has  been long used in Ayurvedic medicine, where it is also known as haridra.  Oh, yes! It can be used as a dye, as well.  In fact, it was originally used as a dye, then found to be a flavoursome food additive, and then was found to be quite medicinal as well.  Always be certain the Turmeric you buy is orange/yellow, not orange/red.  Orange/red could mean impurities were added such as heavy metals, etc.

During the Vedic period in India, Turmeric was known as the ‘’golden spice’’ or the ‘‘spice of life’’ as it was associated with the sun. Significance was attributed to the bright yellow and saffron spice as the sun and sun Gods were a focal point of worship and ritual at the time. The main indigenous uses of Turmeric were rites and rituals intended to produce fertility and spiritual purification.

Magickal

Turmeric has been used in many cultures for increasing fertility in both humans and animals.  Some swear by wearing Turmeric in a charm for good health and protection.  For protective purposes in a ritual circle, Turmeric is sometimes sprinkled within its boundaries.  In Hawaii, Turmeric is mixed with salt and water, then sprinkled in the area wanting purification such as a sick room or even a ritual circle.

Because Turmeric implies a symbol of purity, fertility and prosperity among the Hindus. It is used in  rites and rituals. Turmeric powder along with sandal powder is used in preparing Kalabha to be poured on the presiding deities in temples.

The dried Turmeric roots in Betel leaves called Kumkum are given to the women during the ceremonies as they are considered as a fertility enhancer and bring good luck. Married Hindu women apply this on their forehead longitudinally along the hair partition path to indicate the marital status or smear Turmeric paste on either side of the cheek.  Turmeric paste is applied to the skin of the bride and groom before marriage in some parts of India, Bangladesh, and Pakistan, where it is believed to make the skin glow and keep harmful bacteria away from the body.

In southern India, the dried rhizome is often worn in an amulet as protection against evil and to bring about healing or good luck.

Correspondences

Planetary: Sun

Gender:  Masculine

Zodiac:  Leo

Element: Fire

Chakra:  Solar Plexus

Powers:  Fertility, Health, Purification, Protection

Deity:  Kaali, Naaga, Vishnu, Durga,  Lord Krishna, Ganesh, Kali [Hindu]

Other Names: Olena [Hawaiian]

Health

Turmeric root by Julie Daniluk

Turmeric root ~ photo by Julie Daniluk

Unfortunately, my go-to for all things herbal and spice, Nicholas Culpeper, has no words of wisdom for Turmeric. Then again, he mainly wrote of what he knew from all over England, Scotland, Ireland, and Wales.  There is a good chance he had never tried the spice as it was either not being imported to Great Britain at the time or, if it was, he simply had not the chance to use it.  So, a lot of what you read now will be from my own use Turmeric and the findings I have.

In Ayurveda, the Hindu medicinal system, Turmeric is utilised extensively for its healing and health producing qualities. Spiritually it is used to balance the energies of the body while medicinally it is well known as an anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antiseptic, digestive, antioxidant and diuretic agent. It is taken internally in the form of juice, tea and powder or applied topically in the form of lotions, ointments and pastes. Milk boiled with Turmeric and sugar is used in India as a cold remedy and the juice of the Turmeric root is often applied to help heal wounds.

My personal recipe to help keep my immune system up, as I had written about in my last blog, From the Wortcunner’s Cabinet – Ginger Root:

1-ounce grated Ginger root , steep covered for ten minutes.  I put my Ginger root in a tea diffuser/basket, but you can also just toss it into the hot water if you don’t mind Ginger bits floating round in your drink.  When ten minutes are up, lift out tea basket and add the following:

½ teaspoon powdered Turmeric

A dash or pinch of black Pepper

Stir very well and keep your spoon for you will need to stir it constantly as all of the Turmeric fails to dissolve in the water but if you stir again after each sip you won’t end up with a quarter teaspoon of Turmeric in the bottom of your cup.  It may sound like a bit of work, but the health benefits are very much worth it. 

So far, so good is all I know… its added health benefit is that because both the Ginger root and the Turmeric are both so very anti-inflammatory, my arthritis pain is all but a dream now.  Hand on heart, drinking two cups of this concoction a day is doing more for my pain than when I was having to take heavy prescription painkillers.

Turmeric is also said to be effective for ailments of the liver, such as jaundice.  Clinical trials have shown it to successfully reduce cholesterol levels.  Studies have shown it is also effective against H. pylori the cause of gastric ulcers.  It has also been found effective in some cancers.  Curcumin, the workhorse in Turmeric, can reduce LDL – or bad cholesterol – which will then prevent blood clotting, while removing arterial plaque build-up.

Turmeric contains phytochemicals and nutrients with several beneficial effects such as protecting body organs from damage, reducing cholesterol levels, improving blood-vessel health, controlling inflammation, combating infection, and more.  So, what isn’t there to love about Turmeric?

Stay healthy.

Many thanks for reading and warmest blessings upon all whom this way wander.  Please stay safe x

Sources

The Encyclopaedia of Magical Herbs, by Scott Cunningham

Wikipedia.com

Experience

Posted in Ayurvedic, Ayurvedic Healing, Business, healing, Health, Herbalism, Herbs, Hinduism, Magic, Magickal, Uncategorized, wort cunning | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Fifteen Ways to Live in Self-Isolation or Full Stop Quarantine Without going Mad

By Isabella @TheWandCarver

Instagram:  @thewandcarver

It’s like all the bad bits from history assailed us all at one go.  Kind of like The Plague, 1918 Flu, and both Wars I and II hit at once.  We are now facing several dangerous enemies – Covid-19, the normal flu season, no toilet roll in supermarkets,  wars going on in other countries we have now all but forgotten, and a whacking big recession coming.  Oh, I should have thrown in the Great Depression up there just for some more bang.  Not that we need more bang.

Here is the thing… some people are now thinking they are ill when they aren’t.  We have had to fight the queues for the basic necessities for life as we know it.  If you have food for a week now, you might be rationing it just to make it stretch further because no one knows what the shops will be like in a week’s time or even if we will be allowed to go to them.  I can certainly understand the feeling we must hoard what we can but in truth, if we did not, everybody could have what they need, not just the privileged few who decided it was alright to buy up every last roll on the shelf.  But I digress. This is not what I mean to write about today.

Although food and toilet roll are precious commodities, so is our mental health.  Some of us have been self-isolating for a few days or longer.  Mainly those of us over 60 or 70 years of age or anybody with underlying health conditions. Personally, I do not mind for I have almost always been a very solitary soul.  As long as I have a cat, I’m alright.  But most of you are very social creatures and self-isolation could have you climbing walls already.

Then, of course, there is the never-ending news which never sounds very much more hopeful day after day.  This one is the real bug-a-bear.  Watching Sky or the Beeb or whatever news outlet you watch where you live will drag you further down the self-isolation rabbit hole. And, also reading your Google news feed.  All I can say is – stop.

uninspiredMy son, who is 25, came to Dr Mum [Me, of course]  last night saying he felt he should go to hospital.  Why? I asked him.

“I have a dry cough”

Me:  “Everyone in this house has a dry cough.  We always have dry coughs”

J:  “I am having trouble breathing”

Me:  “Use the nebuliser”

J:  “I’m worried it isn’t my asthma”

Me:  “What are your other symptoms?”

J:  “I think my blood pressure is high”

Me:  “I think you are having a mild anxiety attack”

J:  “But…”

Me: “I’ll take your blood pressure”

Yes, it was high.  So, I steeped up a good cup of Hawthorn tea for him and told him to drink it down, come back in half an hour and I would retake his BP.  Sure enough, his BP had gone down more than 20 points and he was actually in very good spirits… this is partially why I had him drink the Hawthorn tea… it is very much more calming than Chamomile and it does a world of good for high blood pressure and anything heart related.  He has been fine since.

J’s problem is, he watches too much news.  I knew this.  I get to feeling quite ill myself if I watch too much news.  As you are self-isolating or quarantined, do not make the mistake of watching news all day or reading news articles.  Please, for the sake of your sanity, stop!  You must already know the basics that we have hopefully been practising for at least a couple of weeks and that is 1] handwashing, 2] not touching your face 3] coughing/sneezing into the crook of your arm if a tissue is not available 4] social distancing, keeping at least 1 metre [3 feet] apart from others in public, and 5] using hand sanitiser when you can’t wash your hands and to wipe down the supermarket trolly push bar.  If you know and adhere to the basics, and self-isolate, you have a very, very good chance of getting through this.  The bad news is, it can and will take a huge toll on your mental health – if you let it.

Many of you are already aware of how the subconscious mind works and how whatever self-talk or outside bad influences you have fed it, is probably exactly what you are going to get in return.

ImageWhy feed it a steady diet of disease, death, destruction, and fear?  Unless those are things you aspire to then I think it best to leave them off.  It’s fluffy bunnies time!  Yes, fluffy bunnies.  It was a term my youngest daughter used when she wanted to be comforted.  And, by the time the fluffy bunnies arrived, she was no longer scared.  It’s a bit too much of a story to tell here but it worked.  We have to find our own fluffy bunnies as adults.

Here are a few ideas, but of course, some of these are things which comfort me; some are  ideas I thought of as I wrote. You can make a list of what you prefer for yourself… or, you are welcome to my fluffy bunnies 😊

Read a book from the past!  Which books have you read that gave you a good case of the feel happy’s?  Maybe it was a book from childhood… maybe something from in school or maybe even a book you have read to your child.  But if it makes you feel good, read it!

Join an ancestry website.  I’m currently working on two – Ancestry.co.uk [free but pay to get more out of it] and on Wikitree.com  [100% free].  Both are excellent and I’m really loving WikiTree at the moment because everyone contributes to one large tree from all over the world.  And, you can even find out how many degrees of separation you are from someone famous.  Best of all, after you have grown your part of the tree a bit you can also find out if you are related to a former Prime Minister, a former US President, a person who went to the American British Colonies on the Mayflower, as well as the signers of the Magna Carta!  I am a 10th cousin of Prime Minister Winston Churchill and there are 20 degrees of separation from King Henry VIII and myself…. That and £5 might get me a good latte 😊 The point is, it is fun and it gets you off the news.  Not to mention, you can make friends and learn more about your family’s past.

Exercise.  I can’t run, never could.  So, I won’t be out taking a morning run.  But I can go onto YouTube and find yoga, calisthenics, Pilates, and a plethora of other forms of exercise.  And, there are forms of all the exercises which can be done on a level for children, beginners, pros, even for Seniors.  One springs to mind for children [which can be also joined in by the whole family] is Joe Wicks’ “PE with Joe”.  Joe has informed the media that from Mondays through Fridays he will be holding live PE sessions for children being kept home by new isolation restrictions on his YouTube channel.  Of course, Mum and Dad are welcome to join in!  The best part is exercise helps to build your immunity.

Take up a new hobby.  I read the other day where actor Idris Elba [Luther] had begun teaching himself the guitar whilst in isolation.  His wife says he is doing pretty well at playing, despite never having learnt anything about it before.  Although Idris has Covid-19, he is doing the best he can in isolation mode not to allow himself to sit and stew on the problem and this frees his mind to help him to get well. Maybe you don’t have a guitar but there is something you can try… you never know, it might be something you can sell, and it becomes a new opportunity!

Sing.  Oh, don’t worry… I can’t sing, either, but it releases feel-good endorphins, so let’s do it!

Garden.  No, Boris won’t have you arrested for going into your back garden and planting a few seeds.  Herbs are always fabulously helpful things to grow.  Or, next time you cut open a pepper, save the seeds and plant them. Or plant a garlic.  You would be surprised how many things you can grow from the produce you bring into your home.

Start a YouTube channel.  Perhaps you can journal what you do every day to stay sane whilst in isolation… or do make-up tutorials… or read to children … teach…. it’s up to you!  If you can keep it bright and cheerful, helpful to others, it is just what to do!

Turn off notifications on your computer.  Yes, you can.  Go to your Notifications [lower right-hand corner of your screen], click on the gear icon, go to its settings and turn off notifications.  Now, DailyMail will leave me be with all the bad news flashes which I really can’t deal with whilst working online!

Use Skype to have parties.  It’s not recommended to be drinking or smoking spliff during all the Covid-19 going on, however, if you’re used to hanging out with your mates on the weekend and having a few drinks you can’t do it in person now.  But most people have Skype and if so, why not dial into each other, face to face, and knock back a few, and have a laugh. It’s better than nothing and much safer than pubs… which won’t be open anyway.

Make a mood board.  Surely you have some travel brochures, magazines, pics on your phone of things you would love to buy or whatever it is that stirs you.  So, using what you have… a large piece of cardboard or perhaps even the white back side of holiday wrapping paper taped to a wall; cut out and tape up on your board places you want to go or things you want to buy once the Covid-19 pandemic is over.

meditate-meditation-sunsetMeditate.  If you have never tried to meditate this is a good time to start.  I will admit, I am no Maharishi Mahesh Yogi but after some practise, I can clear my mind longer than I once could.  It is definitely a practised act, meditation is.  No one is perfect at it from the first go.  Focus your mind on the quiet.  You can do this even if there is noise going on.  A few times in the past I have tried to focus on the quiet moment between raindrops.  I need much more practise to get to that lofty stage in my development!  The trick is to focus on silence but when you do have a though, recognise it then let it go and go back to focussing on silence itself.  Eventually you will have less thoughts bothering you as you meditate.  [listen to either Eckhart Tolle or Deepak Chopra on YouTube for help in learning how to clear your mind of the endless “noise” it produces]

Self-teach.  Pick a subject you have always wanted to learn… or even one from in school which you wanted to learn but found it too problematic to bother with [probably because, like me, there were more fun things to be done than my maths!]  You can lean a new language… or Algebra, or History… whatever you choose.  Just have a look round YouTube, I’m sure you’ll find loads of tutorials.  My son recently built himself a gaming PC.  He never had never done this before, and he had never had any kind of class for it.  He decided it was what he wanted to do so, with a lot of help from YouTube and his own natural ability to make things work, he now has a top of the line gaming PC… which only cost him about 200.00 in parts! The same equivalent from a computer shop could have easily cost more like 1500.00.  All self-taught!

Ring up family and friends often.  Especially the elderly ones.  Let them know you are thinking of them.  Listen to them.  Don’t do all the talking.  They need you. And you need them.

Sit in the sun.  For at least, and probably not more than 15 minutes every day  when you see sunshine outside, go out and sit.  Best source of vitamin D and it will elevate your mood exponentially.  Vitamin D is essential for a healthy immune system.

Pray to the Universe.  Even we witches pray.  Our deity may not be the same as yours, but then, with all the religions in this world, it doesn’t matter.  If you aren’t particularly religious or don’t believe, pray to the Universe.  If we seek out the Universe for attracting what we want, why should we not be thankful to the Universe as well?  And, don’t blame the Universe for what is happening in the world; it is not the Universe’s fault.  It is what we as human beings have brought forth.  Not pointing a finger at anybody for I know what I have done to bring about Climate Change and other assorted calamities and I accept it.  But it is the catalyst for change within us.  So, no matter if you are Christian, Muslim, Jewish, Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Wiccan, or whatever religion, pray to the Universe as well.  Thank the Universe for the lessons we are learning, although harsh.  Thank the Universe for the love It has for us and thank the Universe for the blessings.  Don’t ask for anything, just be grateful… you will come away feeling refreshed.  It may not sound like it, but it is a fluffy bunny moment! And, being in tune with the Universe is very beneficial to body, mind, and spirit.

So, there are my fifteen fluffy bunnies for you. Of course, I don’t do them all, but I do many of them and it helps ever so much!  And do notice I did not mention binge-watching programmes on Netflix or board games once!  There is only so much of either that anybody can handle.  I wish everyone the very best and do keep safe.  We will get through this and whilst apart, we will still get through this together.  Many thanks for reading and warmest blessing upon those whom this way wander x

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OK, Coronavirus!

By Isabella @TheWandCarver

Instagram:  @thewandcarver

I’m pretty cross at the moment… no, angry is more like.  I am fed up to the back of my teeth with what is going on right now, not just in this country but many others.  Let me count the ways:

  1. dailymail the bog roll planks

    The Toliet Roll hoarders ~ photo from the dailymail.co.uk

    Covid-19 is NOT going to give you diarrhoea, you complete planks!  Nor is it going to stop toliet roll being made.  You selfish, unthinking lot who go out to scavenge every last package of loo roll, toliet roll, toliet paper are doing a HUGE disservice to your fellow human being.  If you run out and you’re on self-isolation as I am because, [in case you give a toss], I am a 64-year-old woman with underlying health issues.  AND, I have two Gen Z adult children who still live at home, both of whom have underlying health conditions, therefore, we are stuck in and needing to order online… but guess what? THERE IS NO BLOODY TOLIET ROLL TO BE FOUND FOR LOVE OR MONEY.  So, thanks for that.

  2. Hand sanitiser bandits:  When you scoff up the lot to sell for whatever unreasonable amount you can jack the price up for or just to pile up in your garage for personal use, you probably have enough to not only see you through the Covid-19 pandemic but also through the never-gonna-happen Zombie Apocalypse!  When you HOARD things like this, muppet, you are ensuring that some other poor sod might die because he or she could not clean their hands after shopping [for not a hell of a lot, from what I’m seeing!] until they get home and, along the way maybe his or her eye begins itching too badly to ignore so they give it a quick rub and lo! They get coronavirus into their eye.  They will at the least get ill.  Or worse. Sociopath.
  3. People who think you can’t hear so they get up in your face to talk in the supermarket:  No.  Just NO.  Stay one metre away and please shout if you think I’m deaf,  but do not, please DO NOT get within spitting distance of someone’s face!

I could go on but I am feeling a little better just typing this out.  I know that people in this world have a better nature than this.  I am cross as hell, yes, but I am also seeing the good in people – people making sure the homeless get fed and get things they need…people delivering food and hopefully, toliet roll, to the elderly…people donating, businesses making hand sanitiser and giving it away for free… yeah, because you ones who decide you simply must have more hand sanitiser than your neighbour bought it all up!

save lives dont hoardSeriously, supermarkets will still open.  Delivery services will still bring your food and other essentials to you.  You will not starve, you will not go unclean, and you will not need to start tearing up your favourite magazines to wipe your bum!  Just give the flipping rest of us a break, please!!  We deserve our essentials as much as anybody else.

And… it would not surprise me in the least if the bog roll scoffers also have fancy-schmancy bidets in their bathrooms. You don’t even need the stuff, really. Well, maybe a little but flipping half dozen packages from every store you go into?  No.

I don’t think anybody who reads my blogs is this kind of person, if I’m honest.  But you know exactly the kind of person who is.  Do us all a favour and print my angry rant and post it to them.  I’m thinking of printing out several myself and going everywhere taping it to supermarket doors.  Ah, but I can’t… I’m self-isolating.  Because I give a ….. about my family, my self, and the planks who think it so clever to buy up all the bog roll and hand sanitiser!  War rationing should be brought back!

Many thanks for reading and warmest blessings to all whom this way wander x Stay safe!

For your further reading pleasure [or displeasure as may be the case] I have compiled a common sense list of things you should know, but probably already do.

COVID-19 [aka Coronavirus] FACTS

You can be carrying the virus without feeling symptoms [asymptomatic].

You can be asymptomatic and still spread the virus to others.

People who are most at risk are – anyone with underlying health issues:  diabetes, asthma, cancer, auto-immune diseases such as any kind of thyroiditis, Lyme Disease, etc, and people over 60 years of age.

There is no present assurance that the disease won’t strike twice on one person.

People, particularly over 60 years old,  may eventually be asked to self-quarantine for the greater good of all for an indefinite period.

Coronavirus has been tested and found to stay on these surfaces for this amount of time:

Cardboard   –  up to 24 hours

Plastic and steel – up to 72 hours

Copper – up to 4 hours

Do not use Ibuprofen at this time, buy some Tylenol as Ibuprofen, being an anti-inflammatory could aggravate the infection because it weakens our own immune system

All countries are not reporting the correct number of infected

What everyone can do to prevent the spread

Disinfect surfaces, doorknobs, tap handles, everywhere people touch.

Wash hands thoroughly, not just your palms for 20 seconds.  It has been recommended that you sing Happy Birthday twice whilst washing as that takes about 20 seconds.  Also, wash under fingernails by scrubbing them on your soapy palms.

Do not shake hands with anyone.  Namaste is nice.

Keep a distance of at least a metre/3 feet  between yourself and others when you are in public

Use hand sanitiser after opening doors [especially at work or in stores], after getting into your car, etc

Use your wrist to turn off water taps, push door levers, especially when out in public

Sneeze and cough into your crooked elbow if you do not have a tissue. If you do use a tissue, throw it away immediately

Use knuckles to flip on light switches, push buttons.  Use your elbow to turn off water after washing hands.  You can even use your wrist to turn the doorknob.  Just keep in mind that once you have washed your hands, it does little good to immediately touch something that may have germs, particularly this one, on it.

Don’t rub your eyes, pick your nose, or put your fingers in your mouth unless just washed thoroughly.  Not being funny.  Eyes,  nose, and mouth are key entry points.  If you must rub your eyes use a tissue.

Rub down your phone with either screen cleaner or hand sanitiser [back only with this] often

Whether you think it is the right way or not, get an early voting form to avoid the need to go to polls.  Everyone will be using those pens and you won’t know if the person in front of you or behind you is infected or not.

It is recommended to prepare all meals at home and avoid restaurants until after things are back to normal

Stay out of crowed places as much as possible… think about ordering food online.

Use less toilet roll and paper towels

These precautions can save the life of not only yourself but your family, co-workers, and others

The first line of defence is keeping this or any disease out of the home, so what we do outside is of critical importance.

Thank you.

 

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From the Wortcunner’s Cabinet – Ginger Root

By Isabella @TheWandCarver

Instagram:  @thewandcarver

Growing Ginger Root

Ginger growing!

I felt now is timely to expound upon the virtues of Ginger root.  And, forgive me if this is more about health than magick, however, in the current climate, I felt all information I have should be shared.

The English origin of the word, “Ginger”, is from the mid-14th century, from Old English gingifer, from Medieval Latin gingiber, from Greek zingiberis, from Prakrit [Middle Indic] singabera, from Sanskrit srngaveram. Ginger originated from Southeast Asia. It is a true cultigen and does not exist in its wild state.

Though it is grown in many areas across the globe, Ginger is among the earliest recorded spices to be cultivated and exported from southwest India.  India holds the seventh position is Ginger export worldwide, however, is still the largest producer of Ginger in the world.

Magickal

There are many ways in which to use Ginger as magickal currency.  One I only just picked up on recently is one for health [although Scott Cunningham has mentioned it]:  Chew some [cleaned] root and spit it on the source of the ‘sicknesses’ to banish it [be it a part of a body, a photograph of the sick person etc].  Take that, Covid-19!  And, in the Pacific, the Dobu Islanders do the same to ward off incoming storms.  I have no recorded proof that either thing works, but when things are dire, we witches want to throw all we can at the problem, don’t we?

Ginger is used a lot in love spells. It is one of the ingredients in our Love Witch Bottle we sell.   Just drinking a cup of Ginger root tea will add power to any spell you perform.

And, Ginger features predominantly in money and success spells.  Whole Ginger root can be planted by your front door to welcome money into your home or you can carry either powdered Ginger or a piece of Ginger root or dried Ginger in a pocket to attract money to you.

For a lusty weekend with your beloved, prepare a Ginger-infused wine for the two of you!

You can burn the root of Ginger and consecrate your ritual tools in the smoke or use it to break hexes.

Simply chewing Ginger root can imbue you with stronger magickal power and capacity.

Correspondences

Planetary: Mars

Gender:  Masculine

Zodiac:  Aries

Element: Fire

Powers:  Love, Lust, Health, Money, Success, Power

Deity:  Brighid, Vesta, Wadjet, Hephaestus, Logi, Ra, Hestia, Sekmet

Other Names: none

Health

Queen-Elizabeth-I-of-England

Queen Elizabeth I

Any of you of a certain age may remember your mother giving you a cup of steaming Ginger tea for an upset stomach.  It is absolutely spot on for nausea and any tummy upset, including morning sickness.  Nicholas Culpeper did write a bit about Ginger… it was only taking hold in Great Britain when Queen Elizabeth I presented visiting dignitaries each with a Gingerbread man baked in their own likeness. Gingerbread tied with a ribbon was popular at fairs and, when exchanged, became a token of love.  Ginger root was only introduced in Great Britain around the 14th century and as far as I can tell, was not grown here.  So, Ginger, as many East Asian spices were of the time, was probably too scarce and expensive for most physicians of the time to use.  To my knowledge, the first blurb written about it was by Mr Culpeper in his The Complete Herbal and English Physician:

Zingerberis. Of Ginger.  Helps digestion, warms the stomach, clears the sight, and is profitable for old men:  heats the joints and is therefore profitable against the gout, expels wind; it is hot and dry in the second degree.”

Wild Ginger and Ginger

Wild Ginger, left; Good Ginger, right ~ photo by By Anna Frodesiak – Own work, Public Domain

As almost always before I write about a herb/flower/root/bark/spice to be used in a medicinal way, I guinea-pig myself with the item.  Mind, I also do read everything about it that I can if it isn’t something I’m already familiar with, right down to recommended dosages.  I have an insatiable desire to know every detail, including research studies.  I don’t feel I should introduce anything medically viable without having done so first.  Still, that said, always do consult your GP before trying most things I speak of… although, I have come to agreement with myself that, Ginger root is 99.9% safe for anybody, with the occasional caveat, such as, don’t use North American wild ginger… much, anyway… as it can cause kidney damage.

I suppose my nana started me on this because as a healing cunning woman herself, if I started moaning about a tummy ache, out comes the grated Ginger root and ten minutes later I was sipping the tea!

Ginger Root

Perfect Ginger root

As a sufferer of arthritis, bad hip and back, and Graves disease [hyperthyroidism] and Hiroshito disease [hypothyroidism] – yes, you can have both –  I needed to look into all things which can be of benefit to me in my “elder years”.  No, I don’t really feel elderly… but you know… So! Some years ago, I had found that adding Turmeric and a little pepper to my twice daily Ginger tea would help my arthritis and has it ever!  I no longer need heavy painkillers or even paracetamol or ibuprofen [more about ibuprofen later].  Of course, I still have some pain occasionally but nothing at all like I once had.  There have been many research reports written about this and you can click here for one which I think explains most things about Ginger root best.

The brilliant bit about this concoction is that it is said to boost one’s immune system as well.  I drink mine twice per day and here is my recipe:

1-ounce grated Ginger root , steep covered for ten minutes.  I put my Ginger root in a tea diffuser/basket, but you can also just toss it into the hot water if you don’t mind Ginger bits floating round in your drink.  When ten minutes are up, lift out tea basket and add the following:

½ teaspoon powdered Turmeric

A dash or pinch of black Pepper

Stir very well and keep your spoon for you will need to stir it constantly as all of the Turmeric fails to dissolve in the water but if you stir again after each sip you won’t end up with a quarter teaspoon of Turmeric in the bottom of your cup.  It may sound like a bit of work, but the health benefits are very much worth it. 

I won’t promise you that you’ll never become ill with a cold or flu if you drink this twice per day, but it can help and possibly reduce how long you’re ill for.  And I won’t tell you that it tastes wonderful because it is an acquired taste, even for someone like me whose taste buds love nearly everything.  Although, if you feel you can drink it a bit easier by adding honey, there’s no harm in it.

Whilst there seem to be no contraindications on how much plain Ginger tea one drinks, there is for how much Turmeric you ingest.  It is likely that more than one full teaspoon per day is not good for you, unless you are very ill or your Ayurvedic or holistic healer recommends more.  Many of you would like to drink one cup of Ginger and Turmeric tea and be done with it but as you know with any pain reliever, it is best to stage doses, therefore, I recommend taking a “dose” around mid-morning and the other just before bedtime.  Also, always be sure that whether you take your Turmeric in the Ginger tea or via supplement that black Pepper or piperine [a natural compound in peppercorns that make black pepper spicy] is included.  Neither Turmeric and Curcumin [the substance that gives the spice its orangey-yellow pigment] supplements cannot be absorbed properly without one or the other.

Please understand that this concoction will not cure a cold [which is of the Coronavirus genealogy] nor the flu, nor Covid-19!  But, it may, with any luck, help already healthy people with no underlying issues, feel better quicker.  I hope so, anyway.

About Ibuprofen, as promised:  The French Health Minister recently reported that Ibuprofen as a painkiller should not be used, particularly with Covid-19.  The country’s health minister, Olivier Véran, who is a qualified doctor and neurologist, tweeted on Saturday: “The taking of anti-inflammatories [ibuprofen, cortisone … ] could be a factor in aggravating the infection. In case of fever, take paracetamol. If you are already taking anti-inflammatory drugs, ask your doctor’s advice.” As per a report in The Guardian.

Health officials point out that anti-inflammatory drugs are known to be a risk for those with infectious illnesses because they tend to diminish the response of the body’s immune system.

Many thanks to all whom this way wander and good health and warmest blessings to all x

Sources

Experience

The Complete Herbal and English Physician, by Nicholas Culpeper

The Encyclopaedia of Magical Herbs, by Scott Cunningham

Wikipedia

Posted in Ayurvedic, Ayurvedic Healing, Business, healing, Health, Herbalism, Herbs, holistic healing, Pagan, spell work, spells, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment