FOLK MEDICINE HEALING

FOLK MEDICINE HEALING

Folk medicine consists of traditional healing beliefs and methods used in
past cultures mostly by people deemed to have the healing power. As an part of a
culture’s knowledge and values, folk medicine is a system based on traditional
modes of conduct, of coping with sickness. Often sanctioned by the population’s
claims or religious beliefs, these popular practices are used to alleviate the
distress of disease and restore harmony in people who are emotionally or
physically ill, or both. Folk medicine’s lore is widely known among members of a
culture and is usually handed down from generation to generation by word of
mouth.

In general, the system is flexible, allowing the introduction of new ideas about
sickness and healing practices, many of them borrowed from classical and modern
medicine.

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HEALERS

To implement the various folk curing practices, most social groups have
established a hierarchy of healers–beginning with the individuals affected,
their immediate families and friends, knowledgeable herbalists, members of the
clergy, faith healers, and SHAMANS, or medicine men. Many are consulted because
of their empirical knowledge of roots and herbs possessing medicinal properties.
Others are considered endowed with healing gifts because of station or accidents
of birth. The belief that posthumous children have such talents is widely known
in the United States. In the European folk-medical tradition, seventh sons and
daughters are said to possess unusual curing powers; the same applies to twins.
Often spouses and children of known healers are automatically considered to have
similar gifts. As in primitive medicine, many people affected by ailments that
are considered minor and natural treat themselves, with the help of family
members. A vast array of easily available herbal preparations known to most
members of the culture is used to effect a cure. More difficult cases suspected
to be of a magico-religious nature are referred to local healers who are endowed
with special powers. These shamans stage a variety of ceremonies and employ many
of the techniques used in preliterate social groups.

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NAVAJOS

Native American folk medicine is popular in the less acculturated Indian
tribes. A notable example are the Navajos still living in their homeland.
Disease is considered a disruption of harmony caused either by external agents
such as lightning and winds, powerful animals and ghosts, and witchcraft, or by
the breaking of taboos. Three categories of folk healers are usually consulted:
first the herbalists, for symptomatic relief of minor ailments; if no
improvement is observed, then the hand trembler, or diviner, is called; finally,
the singer, or MEDICINE MAN, will carry out specific healing ceremonies
suggested by the hand trembler’s diagnosis. Ritual sweatbaths, drinking of
herbs, and elaborate sandpainting ceremonies characterize Navajo folk healing.

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HOT-COLD THEORY

The hot-cold theory of disease ranks among the most popular systems of
contemporary folk medicine in the United States. In health, the human body
displays a balanced blending of hot and cold qualities. Sickness will ensue
if an excess of hot or cold foodstuffs is ingested. The basic scheme was
introduced into Latin America by the Spanish during the 16th century. Reinforced
by native cultural values, it became firmly embedded in popular Latin healing
traditions. The hot-cold scheme is applied to foods, diseases, and remedies. The
terms hot and cold do not necessarily refer to the temperature of foods or
remedies. Qualities are assigned on the basis of origin, color, nutritional
value, physiological effects of the food or remedy, as well as therapeutical
action. Among New York Puerto Ricans, for example, bananas, coconuts, and sugar
cane are considered cold, whereas chocolate, garlic, alcoholic beverages, and
corn meal are hot. Cold-classified illnesses such are arthritis, colds, and
gastric complaints must be treated with hot foods and remedies. Their hot
counterparts –constipation, diarrhea, and intestinal cramps–require treatment
with cold substances.

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BLACK AMERICANS

The medical folklore of black Americans contains elements derived from popular
European and African beliefs, blended with religious elements belonging to
Christian Fundamentalism and West Indian voodoo. The world is seen as a
dangerous place, prompting individuals to constantly exert caution because
of the whims of nature, frequent divine punishment, and the threat of witchcraft
practiced by hostile humans. Individuals are urged to look out for themselves,
be distrustful, and avoid the wrath of God. Sickness is broadly divided into
“natural” and “unnatural.” The former comprises bodily conditions caused by
environmental forces as well as God’s punishment for sin. Unnatural illness
represents health problems caused by evil influences and witchcraft after the
loss of divine protection; the magical intrusion of “animals” into the body and
the placement of a certain hex play prominent roles in the causation of disease.

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MEXICAN-AMERICANS

Folk medicine is still popular among large groups of Mexican-Americans in New
Mexico, Colorado, Arizona, California, and especially in West Texas. Their
healing system, based on pre-Columbian indigenous lore, reflects a degree of
isolation and unwillingness to assimilate Anglo-Saxon culture. Moreover, the
inability of scientific medicine to offer relief for various categories of folk
illness further enhances the usefulness of these practices. Five types of folk
illness are most prominent: mal de ojo (evil eye), empacho (gastro-intestinal
blockage due to excessive food intake), susto (magically induced fright), caida
de la mollera (fallen fontanel, or opening in or between bones), and mal puesto
(sorcery). Prominent among Mexican-American folk healers is the curandero, a
type of shaman who uses white magic and herbs to effect cures. In the cosmic
struggle between good and evil, the curandero, using God-given powers, wards
against harmful spells and hexes. As in other folk systems, faith in the
curandero’s abilities is the essence of the healer’s continued success.

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FOLK MEDICINE TODAY

Folk medical systems, especially those ftinctionffig in a pluralistic society
comprising several distinct ethnic groups (as in the United States), govern
domestic healing activities to a great extent. Recently, the increasing
complexity, technicality, and cost of modem medicine have spurred renewed
attempts at self-medication and the use of herbal preparations, thus reviving
folk medical practices.

A number of folk remedies used *in the past are now manufactured as
pharmaceutical preparations prescribed by physicians. For example, rauwolfia is
an extract of the snakeroot plant, which was used for centuries in the Far East
for its calming effect. It is now prescribed by physicians to lower blood
pressure. Reserpine, a derivative of rauwolfia, has been used by psychiatrists
‘in treating severe mental disorders. Foxglove was first brewed by Indians to
treat dropsy, fluid in the legs caused by heart problems. This practice occurred
for hundreds of years before it was discovered that foxglove contributed the
active ingredients now known as digitalis. Today digitalis is commonly used to
stimulate weakened hearts.

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Monday – The Day of the Moon

MONDAY

The Day of the Moon

monandaeg (Anglo-Saxon)
montag (Germanic)
dies lunae (Latin)
som-var (Hindu)
peer or somwar (Islamic)
lundi (French)
getsu youbi (Japanese

This is traditionally viewed as the second day of the week. Although known as ‘Monandaeg’ by the Angle-Saxons it was also known as ‘the day of the moon’. ‘Black Monday’ was the term given to 14 April 1360 which was an Easter Monday. King Edward III of England had laid siege to Paris but was plagued by the weather as it turned foul and dark.. As a result it is said that many men and their mounts were lost in battle. The fact that this event is said to have occurred on Easter Monday is disputed, being later said to have occurred on the Tuesday, but ever since the Monday after Easter has been given this name. On 25 February 1865 a terrifying wind rose up in Melbourne, Australia coming from the NNW. Devastation hit an immense area of land between Castlemaine and Sandhurst, known after by this name. According to tradition it was believed that there were three specific Mondays of the year that were considered to be unlucky. The first Monday in April, the second in August, and the last in the month of December. It is said that Cain was born on the first Monday in April, and that later it was upon this day that he killed his brother Abel. Sodom and Gommorah was said to be destroyed on the second Monday in August, and that it was upon this day in December that Judas Iscariot was born. According to the English historian Richard Grafton certain dates of the month were unlucky as published in the ‘Manual’ in 1565. Days throughout the year were identified and of course could have related to any day of the week. The date was the most important point to consider. The work was reputed to have some credence with support given by astronomers of the day.

(For more information see Mystical WWW Mystical Time : Mystical Months).

Wednesday – The Day of Wisdom, The Day of Mercury

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WEDNESDAY

The Day of Wisdom
 The Day of Mercury

wodensdaeg (Anglo-Saxon)
mittwoch (Germanic)
dies mercurii (Latin)
budh-var (Hindu)
boodh (Islamic)
mercredi (French)
sui youbi (Japanese

Traditionally known as the fourth day of the week. This day was associated with Odin the God of War, Wisdom, Agriculture and Poetry. He was also regarded as the God of the Dead. The Anglo-Saxons changed the name from ‘Odin’s Day’ to ‘Woden’s Day’, whilst the French referred to the day as ‘Mercredi’ or ‘Mercury’s Day’, Mercury being the God of Science, Commerce, Travellers, Rogues, and Thieves.

In most of Europe Wednesday was thought to be a very unlucky day whilst in the USA quite the opposite was believed as the following New England rhyme shows: ‘Monday for health,
Tuesday for wealth,
Wednesday the best of all.
Thursday for losses,
Friday for crosses,
And Saturday no luck at all!’

The above rhyme has according to research also been associated with selecting days to get married. The Persians associated Wednesday with the name ‘Red Letter Day’. It is believed that this was because they believed that the moon was created on this day.

According to the English historian Richard Grafton certain dates of the month were unlucky as published in the ‘Manual’ in 1565. Days throughout the year were identified and of course could have related to any day of the week. The date was the most important point to consider. The work was reputed to have some credence with support given by astronomers of the day.

(For more information see Mystical WWW Mystical Time : Mystical Months).

FRIDAY – The Day of the Love, 
The Day of Venus

FRIDAY

The Day of the Love
The Day of Venus

frigedaeg or frige dag (Anglo-Saxon) freitag (Germanic) dies veneris (Latin) sukra-var (Hindu) juma (Islamic) vendredi (French) kin youbi (Japanese)

This is traditionally the sixth day of the week. The name given to this day in ancient Rome was ‘dies Veneris’ as is was a day dedicated to Venus. Later the French named the day ‘Vendredi’ believed to have derived from the same origin. In northern countries the closest equivalent to the Goddess Venus was ‘Frigg’ or ‘Freya’ with the day becoming known by the Anglo-Saxons as ‘Frige dag’, later to Friday. Traditionally associated in many parts of Europe with misfortune as this was believed to be the day when Christ was crucified at Calvary, and also that this was the day that Adam was tempted by Eve with the Forbidden Fruit. Within the Roman Catholic faith Friday was traditionally a day of abstinence. Today it is a still viewed as a day for some private act of self-denial (For further information see Mystical WWW Easter). According to tradition there are some practices that should be avoided if possible on a Friday including, births, weddings, the sailing of a ship, cutting your nails or starting a new job. This is indicated in the following rhyme:

‘Whoever be born on Friday or it’s night, He shall be accursed of men, Silly and crafty and loathsome to all men, And shall ever be thinking evil in his heart, And shall be a thief and a great coward, And shall not live longer than to middle age.’

A contradiction is expressed if a child was born on this day in ‘Days of the Week’, which indicated a more favourable omen. And indeed it is said that in 1492 Columbus set sail and sighted land on a Friday. In Hungarian (Europe) folklore it was believed be an omen of bad luck to be born on a Friday although it was believed that the onset of misfortune could be avoided or removed by placing some of your own blood on some of your own old clothing and then burning it. The criminal underworld have an old belief that ‘a burglary committed on a Friday will probably result in arrest’ as perhaps a sign of divine intervention and retribution upon the criminal, and if you were bought to trial for any offence on a Friday it was thought to be a bad omen. In the British Isles and USA Friday was the customary day to carry-out hangings and so was sometimes referred to as ‘Hangman’s Day’ or ‘Hanging Day’. (This perhaps is connected to the Christian belief in a Friday being the worst day of the week, as this was the day identified with the Crucifixion and the death of Christ). If it rains on a Friday an old rural belief (UK) was that it indicated the forecast would be fine on the following Sunday. If you dreamt on a Friday night of an event or people and then told the content of the dream to someone in your family on the Saturday morning it was more likely to happen. In Scotland (UK) and Germany (Europe) according to an old belief Friday was thought to be a good day to go courting (dating). Norse men traditionally saw this as a positive day, the luckiest of the week. ‘Black Friday’ has been regularly used to label days of significance within the British culture. This was the name given to December 6 1745 in the British Isles. This was the day that information reached London (UK) that the Young Pretender had reached Derby (UK). The threatened General Strike was cancelled on 15 April 1921 affecting the stance of the British Labour Movement (UK). The Government (USA) flooded the open market with gold to bring down prices on 24 September 1869 ruining the livelihoods of many speculators in USA. Mohammedans believe that Adam was created on a Friday, and so the day is seen to be the Sabbath. It is also believed that Eve tempted Adam with the Forbidden Fruit on this day, and that later both died on a Friday. Friday is believed to be a day of misfortune too for Buddhists and Brahmins. ‘Long Friday’ was another name given to Good Friday (For further information see Mystical WWW Easter) by the Saxons. It is thought that the name derived from the fact that this was a day of abstinence. According to the English historian Richard Grafton certain dates of the month were unlucky as published in the ‘Manual’ in 1565. Days throughout the year were identified and of course could have related to any day of the week. The date was the most important point to consider. The work was reputed to have some credence with support given by astronomers of the day.

(For more information see Mystical WWW Mystical Time : Mystical Months).

WEDNESDAY – The Day of Wisdom,
 The Day of Mercury

WEDNESDAY

The Day of Wisdom
 The Day of Mercury

wodensdaeg (Anglo-Saxon)
mittwoch (Germanic)
dies mercurii (Latin)
budh-var (Hindu)
boodh (Islamic)
mercredi (French)
sui youbi (Japanese

Traditionally known as the fourth day of the week. This day was associated with Odin the God of War, Wisdom, Agriculture and Poetry. He was also regarded as the God of the Dead. The Anglo-Saxons changed the name from ‘Odin’s Day’ to ‘Woden’s Day’, whilst the French referred to the day as ‘Mercredi’ or ‘Mercury’s Day’, Mercury being the God of Science, Commerce, Travellers, Rogues, and Thieves. In most of Europe Wednesday was thought to be a very unlucky day whilst in the USA quite the opposite was believed as the following New England rhyme shows: ‘Monday for health,
Tuesday for wealth,
Wednesday the best of all.
Thursday for losses,
Friday for crosses,
And Saturday no luck at all!’ The above rhyme has according to research also been associated with selecting days to get married. The Persians associated Wednesday with the name ‘Red Letter Day’. It is believed that this was because they believed that the moon was created on this day. According to the English historian Richard Grafton certain dates of the month were unlucky as published in the ‘Manual’ in 1565. Days throughout the year were identified and of course could have related to any day of the week. The date was the most important point to consider. The work was reputed to have some credence with support given by astronomers of the day.

(For more information see Mystical WWW Mystical Time : Mystical Months).

SATURDAY – The Day of Reckoning, 
The Day of Saturn

SATURDAY

The Day of Reckoning
The Day of Saturn

saterndaeg or soeterdaeg (Anglo-Saxon)
samstag (Germanic)
dies saturni (Latin)
sani-var or sanichar (Hindu)
sunneecher (Islamic)
samedi (French)
dou youbi (Japanese)

Traditionally seen as the seventh day of the week. The Latin name for this day was ‘Dies Saturni’ meaning the ‘Day of Saturn’ (Saturn being a Roman deity) which was later developed by the Anglo-Saxons to ‘Soeterdoeg’. Saturn was associated with the ancient Greek ‘Kronos’ or ‘Time’ (some refer to this deity as Father Time). Kronos was said to have attempted to devour each one of his children but was unsuccessful with ‘Neptune’ or ‘Water’, ‘Jupiter’ or ‘Air’ and ‘Pluto’ or ‘The Grave’ as it was believed that not even Time can harm these. Jupiter eventually banished Saturn from his thrown. Saturn was also known as the God of the Seed and Harvest being symbolised by a scythe. Those who practised the ancient art of alchemy believed that Saturn was linked to the metal lead, and that anyone born under this sign would be influenced by its evil nature. Alchemists referred to the ‘Tree of Diana’ also known as the ‘Philosopher’s Tree’ as ‘Saturn’s Tree’. Modern astrologers indeed still link the disposition of anyone born under the influence of Saturn as being likened to the qualities of the metal, these being gloomy, dull, sluggish, grave, phlegmatic:

‘Then rose the seed of Chaos and of Night To blot out order and extinguish light. Of dull and venal a new world to mould, And bring Saturnian days of lead and gold.’ Pope : Dunciad, IV, 13.

Saturday in India is traditionally believed to be an unlucky day as this is the day dedicated to the God of Misfortune named ‘Sani’. In Ireland (UK) it is believed that if a the visual phenomena of a rainbow appears on this day then the following week will be nothing but wet weather. In Scotland (UK) it was traditionally believed that any child born on this day would have the gift of seeing ghosts. In rural areas of the British Isles it was traditionally believed to be bad luck to change jobs on a Saturday, an old English (UK) rhyme to support this was:

‘Saturday servants never stay, Sunday servants run away.’

‘Black Saturday’ was the name given to August 4 1621. It is said that a violent storm symbolically blew-up in Scotland (UK) at the moment when Parliament was in the house discussing whether to make change of the Episcopacy laws, and force this upon the people of Scotland. According to the English historian Richard Grafton certain dates of the month were unlucky as published in the ‘Manual’ in 1565. Days throughout the year were identified and of course could have related to any day of the week. The date was the most important point to consider. The work was reputed to have some credence with support given by astronomers of the day.

(For more information see Mystical WWW Mystical Time : Mystical Months).

FRIDAY – The Day of the Love, 
The Day of Venus

Days Of The Week Comments
FRIDAY

The Day of the Love
The Day of Venus

frigedaeg or frige dag (Anglo-Saxon) freitag (Germanic) dies veneris (Latin) sukra-var (Hindu) juma (Islamic) vendredi (French) kin youbi (Japanese)

This is traditionally the sixth day of the week. The name given to this day in ancient Rome was ‘dies Veneris’ as is was a day dedicated to Venus. Later the French named the day ‘Vendredi’ believed to have derived from the same origin. In northern countries the closest equivalent to the Goddess Venus was ‘Frigg’ or ‘Freya’ with the day becoming known by the Anglo-Saxons as ‘Frige dag’, later to Friday. Traditionally associated in many parts of Europe with misfortune as this was believed to be the day when Christ was crucified at Calvary, and also that this was the day that Adam was tempted by Eve with the Forbidden Fruit. Within the Roman Catholic faith Friday was traditionally a day of abstinence. Today it is a still viewed as a day for some private act of self-denial (For further information see Mystical WWW Easter). According to tradition there are some practices that should be avoided if possible on a Friday including, births, weddings, the sailing of a ship, cutting your nails or starting a new job. This is indicated in the following rhyme:

‘Whoever be born on Friday or it’s night, He shall be accursed of men, Silly and crafty and loathsome to all men, And shall ever be thinking evil in his heart, And shall be a thief and a great coward, And shall not live longer than to middle age.’

A contradiction is expressed if a child was born on this day in ‘Days of the Week’, which indicated a more favourable omen. And indeed it is said that in 1492 Columbus set sail and sighted land on a Friday. In Hungarian (Europe) folklore it was believed be an omen of bad luck to be born on a Friday although it was believed that the onset of misfortune could be avoided or removed by placing some of your own blood on some of your own old clothing and then burning it. The criminal underworld have an old belief that ‘a burglary committed on a Friday will probably result in arrest’ as perhaps a sign of divine intervention and retribution upon the criminal, and if you were bought to trial for any offence on a Friday it was thought to be a bad omen. In the British Isles and USA Friday was the customary day to carry-out hangings and so was sometimes referred to as ‘Hangman’s Day’ or ‘Hanging Day’. (This perhaps is connected to the Christian belief in a Friday being the worst day of the week, as this was the day identified with the Crucifixion and the death of Christ). If it rains on a Friday an old rural belief (UK) was that it indicated the forecast would be fine on the following Sunday. If you dreamt on a Friday night of an event or people and then told the content of the dream to someone in your family on the Saturday morning it was more likely to happen. In Scotland (UK) and Germany (Europe) according to an old belief Friday was thought to be a good day to go courting (dating). Norse men traditionally saw this as a positive day, the luckiest of the week. ‘Black Friday’ has been regularly used to label days of significance within the British culture. This was the name given to December 6 1745 in the British Isles. This was the day that information reached London (UK) that the Young Pretender had reached Derby (UK). The threatened General Strike was cancelled on 15 April 1921 affecting the stance of the British Labour Movement (UK). The Government (USA) flooded the open market with gold to bring down prices on 24 September 1869 ruining the livelihoods of many speculators in USA. Mohammedans believe that Adam was created on a Friday, and so the day is seen to be the Sabbath. It is also believed that Eve tempted Adam with the Forbidden Fruit on this day, and that later both died on a Friday. Friday is believed to be a day of misfortune too for Buddhists and Brahmins. ‘Long Friday’ was another name given to Good Friday (For further information see Mystical WWW Easter) by the Saxons. It is thought that the name derived from the fact that this was a day of abstinence. According to the English historian Richard Grafton certain dates of the month were unlucky as published in the ‘Manual’ in 1565. Days throughout the year were identified and of course could have related to any day of the week. The date was the most important point to consider. The work was reputed to have some credence with support given by astronomers of the day.

(For more information see Mystical WWW Mystical Time : Mystical Months).

TUESDAY – The Day of Mars
, The Day of Honour

TUESDAY

The Day of Mars
 The Day of Honour

tiwesdaeg (Anglo-Saxon)
dienstag (Germanic)
dies martis (Latin)
mangal-var (Hindu)
mungul (Islamic)
mardi (French)
ka youbi (Japanese)

Traditionally seen as the third day of the week. ‘Tiu’, also ‘Tiw’, was associated with Mars who was the Roman god of War. Tiu was the younger brother of Thor and son of Odin. The French later closely translated this name to ‘Mardi’ or ‘Mar’s Day’. Mars has also been associated with Zeus or ‘Zeus’s Day’ later being developed by the Anglo-Saxons. It was thought that to meet a left-handed person in the early morning on a Tuesday would bring misfortune for the rest of the day according to a traditional Scandinavian belief. It has been suggested that this may because of the fact that the day related to the God of War. According to the English historian Richard Grafton certain dates of the month were unlucky as published in the ‘Manual’ in 1565. Days throughout the year were identified and of course could have related to any day of the week. The date was the most important point to consider. The work was reputed to have some credence with support given by astronomers of the day.

(For more information see Mystical WWW Mystical Time : Mystical Months).

SUNDAY – The Day of the Sun

SUNDAY

The Day of the Sun

sunnandaeg (Anglo-Saxon)
sonntag (Germanic)
dies solis (Latin)
ravi-var (Hindu)
etwar (Islamic)
dimanche (French)
nichi youbi (Japanese)

Traditionally seen as the first day of the week by the ancient Hebrews and as identified by the fourth commandment (Exodus, xx, 8-11). This day was in ancient times dedicated to the Sun and later as ‘The Lord’s Day’. Sunday is traditionally a time for rest, reflection and worship. It is believed to be a lucky day for babies born on this day according to tradition as the child was thought to be safe from witches and evil spirits. Some born on this day are believed to have psychic or devining abilities. Any cures that are administered on a Sunday were believed to be more likely to succeed. In some parts of the British Isles (UK) there is a belief that announces that any agreements that are made on a Sunday are not legal as it will offend God to make any transactions of a day of reflection and dedicated to worship. In the USA this is enforced by the saying ‘ Never make plans on a Sunday’. In rural areas of the British Isles those employed for a new job on a Sunday would soon leave their post:

‘Saturday servants never stay,
Sunday servants run away.’

It was also thought to be unlucky to put clean sheets on the bed on a Sunday along with cutting your hair or nails. Regarding music, choir singers who sang a false note on this day were according to a traditional English (UK) belief expected to have a burnt Sunday dinner. You could expect a busy profitable week ahead, especially if you were in business, if you found a pair of gloves on this day, and quite naturally very unlucky to be the person who had lost them according to a rural English (UK) belief. A prehistoric cairn marks the spot of Druid worship where a Christian settlement was created Slieve Donhard, near Newcastle, England. Set up by Donhard (a convert of St. Patrick), pilgrimages regularly visit the place of worship, high on the hill, as it is said that St. Patrick himself appears as a result of Donhard’s faith each Sunday of the year. As he appears before everyone, it is said that St. Patrick also leads the people in the mass. (For more on St. Patrick see Mystical WWW Mystical Time : Mystical Months, March 17. For more on Donhard see Mystical WWW Mystical Time : Mystical Months, March 24). According to the English historian Richard Grafton certain dates of the month were unlucky as published in the ‘Manual’ in 1565. Days throughout the year were identified and of course could have related to any day of the week. The date was the most important point to consider. The work was reputed to have some credence with support given by astronomers of the day.

(For more information see Mystical WWW Mystical Time : Mystical Months).

SATURDAY – The Day of Reckoning
, The Day of Saturn

Days Of The Week Comments
SATURDAY

The Day of Reckoning
The Day of Saturn

saterndaeg or soeterdaeg (Anglo-Saxon)
samstag (Germanic)
dies saturni (Latin)
sani-var or sanichar (Hindu)
sunneecher (Islamic)
samedi (French)
dou youbi (Japanese)

Traditionally seen as the seventh day of the week. The Latin name for this day was ‘Dies Saturni’ meaning the ‘Day of Saturn’ (Saturn being a Roman deity) which was later developed by the Anglo-Saxons to ‘Soeterdoeg’. Saturn was associated with the ancient Greek ‘Kronos’ or ‘Time’ (some refer to this deity as Father Time). Kronos was said to have attempted to devour each one of his children but was unsuccessful with ‘Neptune’ or ‘Water’, ‘Jupiter’ or ‘Air’ and ‘Pluto’ or ‘The Grave’ as it was believed that not even Time can harm these. Jupiter eventually banished Saturn from his thrown. Saturn was also known as the God of the Seed and Harvest being symbolised by a scythe. Those who practised the ancient art of alchemy believed that Saturn was linked to the metal lead, and that anyone born under this sign would be influenced by its evil nature. Alchemists referred to the ‘Tree of Diana’ also known as the ‘Philosopher’s Tree’ as ‘Saturn’s Tree’. Modern astrologers indeed still link the disposition of anyone born under the influence of Saturn as being likened to the qualities of the metal, these being gloomy, dull, sluggish, grave, phlegmatic:

‘Then rose the seed of Chaos and of Night To blot out order and extinguish light. Of dull and venal a new world to mould, And bring Saturnian days of lead and gold.’ Pope : Dunciad, IV, 13.

Saturday in India is traditionally believed to be an unlucky day as this is the day dedicated to the God of Misfortune named ‘Sani’. In Ireland (UK) it is believed that if a the visual phenomena of a rainbow appears on this day then the following week will be nothing but wet weather. In Scotland (UK) it was traditionally believed that any child born on this day would have the gift of seeing ghosts. In rural areas of the British Isles it was traditionally believed to be bad luck to change jobs on a Saturday, an old English (UK) rhyme to support this was:

‘Saturday servants never stay,

Sunday servants run away.’

‘Black Saturday’ was the name given to August 4 1621. It is said that a violent storm symbolically blew-up in Scotland (UK) at the moment when Parliament was in the house discussing whether to make change of the Episcopacy laws, and force this upon the people of Scotland. According to the English historian Richard Grafton certain dates of the month were unlucky as published in the ‘Manual’ in 1565. Days throughout the year were identified and of course could have related to any day of the week. The date was the most important point to consider. The work was reputed to have some credence with support given by astronomers of the day.

(For more information see Mystical WWW Mystical Time : Mystical Months).