East (Northern Hemisphere)
West (Southern Hemisphere)
Alexandrite heals the central nervous system. Harmonises the co-operation of the organs, especially the spleen, stomach and pancreas. Also works especially well in leukaemia cases. Alexandrite attracts good luck. Also used in love spells.
Note: Alexandrite is a very rare stone and therefore an extremely expensive one. However it is one of the most exquisite stones I’ve ever had the pleasure of seeing, because of one of its wonderful property of changing colours: in daylight this stone appears to be green and in artificial lighting this stone appears to be red.
—Synonyms—Mandragora. Satan’s Apple.
—Habitat—The Mandrake, the object of so many strange superstitions, is a native of Southern Europe and the Levant, but will grow here in gardens if given a warm situation, though otherwise it may not survive severe winters. It was cultivated in England in 1562 by Turner, the author of the Niewe Herball.
The name Mandragorais derived from two Greek words implying ‘hurtful to cattle. ‘ The Arabs call it ‘Satan’s apple.’
—Description—It has a large, brown root, somewhat like a parsnip, running 3 or 4 feet deep into the ground, sometimes single and sometimes divided into two or three branches. Immediately from the crown of the root arise several large, dark-green leaves, which at first stand erect, but when grown to full size a foot or more in length and 4 or 5 inches in width – spread open and lie upon the ground. They are sharp pointed at the apex and of a foetid odour. From among these leaves spring the flowers, each on a separate foot-stalk, 3 or 4 inches high. They are somewhat of the shape and size of a primrose, the corolla bell-shaped, cut into five spreading segments, of a whitish colour, somewhat tinged with purple. They are succeeded by a smooth, round fruit, about as large as a small apple, of a deep yellow colour when ripe, full of pulp and with a strong, apple-like scent.
—Medicinal Action and Uses—The leaves are quite harmless and cooling, and have been used for ointments and other external application. Boiled in milk and used as a poultice, they were employed by Boerhaave as an application to indolent ulcers.
The fresh root operates very powerfully as an emetic and purgative. The dried bark of the root was used also as a rough emetic.
Mandrake was much used by the Ancients, who considered it an anodyne and soporific. In large doses it is said to excite delirium and madness. They used it for procuring rest and sleep in continued pain, also in melancholy, convulsions, rheumatic pains and scrofulous tumours. They mostly employed the bark of the root, either expressing the juice or infusing it in wine or water. The root finely scraped into a pulp and mixed with brandy was said to be efficacious in chronic rheumatism.
Mandrake was used in Pliny’s days as an anaesthetic for operations, a piece of the root being given to the patient to chew before undergoing the operation. In small doses it was employed by the Ancients in maniacal cases.
A tincture is used in homoeopathy to-day, made from the fresh plant.
Bartholomew gives two other beliefs about the Mandrake which are not found in any other English Herbal – namely, that while uprooting it the digger must beware of contrary winds, and that he must go on digging for it uptil sunset.
In the Grete Herball(printed by Peter Treveris in 1526) we find the first avowal of disbelief in the supposed powers of the Mandrake. Gerard also pours scorn on the Mandrake legend.
‘There have been,’ he says, ‘many ridiculous tales brought up of this plant, whether of old wives or runnegate surgeons or phisick mongers, I know not, all which dreames and old wives tales you shall from henceforth cast out your bookes of memorie.’
Parkinson says that if ivory is boiled with Mandrake root for six hours, the ivory will become so soft ‘that it will take what form or impression you will give it.’
Josephus says that the Mandrake – which he calls Baaras – has but one virtue, that of expelling demons from sick persons, as the demons cannot bear either its smell or its presence. He even relates that it was certain death to touch this plant, except under certain circumstances which he details. (Wars of the Jews, book vii, cap. vi.)
The roots of Mandrake were supposed to bear a resemblance to the human form, on account of their habit of forking into two and shooting on each side. In the old Herbals we find them frequently figured as a male with a long beard, and a female with a very bushy head of hair. Many weird superstitions collected round the Mandrake root. As an amulet, it was once placed on mantelpieces to avert misfortune and to bringprosperity and happiness to the house. Bryony roots were often cut into fancy shapes and passed off as Mandrake, being even trained to grow in moulds till they assumed the desired forms. In Henry VIII’s time quaint little images made from Bryony roots, cut into the figure of a man, with grains of millet inserted into the face as eyes, fetched high prices. They were known as puppettes or mammettes, and were accredited with magical powers. Italian ladies were known to pay as much as thirty golden ducats for similar artificial Mandrakes.
The plant was fabled to grow under the gallows of murderers, and it was believed to be death to dig up the root, which was said to utter a shriek and terrible groans on being dug up, which none might hear and live. It was held, therefore, that he who would take up a plant of Mandrake should tie a dog to it for that purpose, who drawing it out would certainly perish, as the man would have done, had he attempted to dig it up in the ordinary manner.
There are many allusions to the Mandrake in ancient writers. From the earliest times a notion prevailed in the East that the Mandrake will remove sterility, and there is a reference to this belief in Genesis xxx. 14.
When the plants come up in the spring, they must be kept well watered through the summer and kept free from weeds. At the end of August they should be taken up carefully and transplanted where they are to remain. The soil should be light and deep, as the roots run far down – if too wet, they will rot in winter, if too near chalk or gravel, they will make little progress. Where the soil is good and they are not disturbed, these plants will grow to a large size in a few years, and will produce great quantities of flowers and fruit.
Culpepper tells us the Mandrake is governed by Mercury. The fruit has been accounted poisonous, but without cause…. The root formerly was supposed to have the human form, but it really resembles a carrot or parsnip.
|Your Daily Influences
April 14, 2011
|Three of Wands
Hope, strength and world power will be realized. Arrogance is your enemy. Partnerships may bring your hopes to a good end.
Thurisaz embodies the polarity of life and death and the struggle to keep them in balance. Expect conflict, hardship and obstacles, but be assured that remaining focused and in touch with your inner strengths will see you through whatever comes your way. This Rune may also represent protection from your enemies, which is never a bad thing.
|Aquarius the Water Bearer
This aspect of your life will be strongly influenced by a person who is intractable, contrary, perverse, unpredictable, unemotional and detached. You are inclined to try to help this person, but be careful it may be more than you should undertake at this time.
|Your Daily Influences represent events and challenges the current day will present for you. They may represent opportunities you should be ready to seize. Or they may forewarn you of problems you may be able to avoid or lessen. Generally it is best to use them as tips to help you manage your day and nothing more.|
Your Animal Spirit for Today
Blue Jay encourages you to be a little sassy today! If there’s something you’ve been wanting, ask for it. If there’s an issue that needs confrontation, don’t sweep it under the rug or Blue Jay will drag it back out into the open. One word of caution, though—Blue Jays will eat the young of other birds—so be direct, but not destructive.
The Chakras represent the seven primary energy hubs in the body. Life force energy is constantly flowing in and out of these centers. Just as the cosmos is constantly changing, so too are the levels of energy absorbed and radiated by our Chakra centers. The graph below is a representation of the quantities of Chakra energies available today.
Sahasrara – The Crown Chakra represents energies associated with cosmic consciousness, spirituality, knowledge, wisdom and inner peace.
Ajna – The Third Eye Chakra represents energies focused on both physical and spiritual vision. Psychic powers resonate from the Ajna Chakra, as well as your image of the Cosmos as a whole (the big picture) and the many nuances that make your journey unique.
Vishuddha – Throat Chakra is the energy center associated with communication and creativity. Your energy to express yourself verbally and creatively are derived from the Vishuddha Chakra.
Anahata – The Heart Chakra’s energy is concentrated on issues concerning your emotions. This energy fuels your power to love, feel compassion and maintain balance between disparate aspects of your being.
Manipura – The Power Chakra provides the energy that fuels our strength of will, individuality and sense of self-worth.
Svadhisthana – The Spleen or Sacral Chakra supplies the energy we use emotionally and sexually. This is the energy used to connect to others.
Muladhara – The Root or Base Chakra furnishes the energy used to create and maintain our foundation. This is the energy that keeps us on firm ground and provides us with the basic skills to uphold a place in the world.
|Your Deck of Ancient Symbols Card for Today
The Magus is the physical embodiment of decisive action based upon knowledge and aimed squarely at specific goals. Thoroughly Yang by nature and firmly set in the material world, he none-the-less has a powerful spiritual connection as well. His knowledge, wisdom and skill are all encompassing. He is complete. His power as a creator is unmatched on our earthly plane. He is self-aware and unafraid to act. His enormous strength gives him the freedom to act as he chooses. However, responsibility comes with that freedom. Because he is not bound to the restraints of others he must choose how to act. The question that always lies before him is should he act morally, or forsake ethics for personal gain.
As a daily card, The Magus suggest you currently possess a tremendous power and freedom to move your life in any direction you choose. In short, you can make things happen. Your true challenge at the moment is to move forward without trampling the dreams of others. Fortunately your moral fiber is strong as well, and will guide you down the right path.