Wise Woman Ezine with herbalist Susun Weed
September 2008
Volume 8 Number 9
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What's Inside Wise Woman Herbal Ezine this Month...

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Healing Wise ...
Now Remember Rosemary
by Susun Weed

 

Now Remember Rosemary
©2008 by Susun S Weed

As seen printed in Mystic Pop Magazine

 

Mad Ophelia tells us: "There's Rosemary, that's for remembrance." In Shakespeare's day it was common knowledge that rosemary helped one remember. Today, as then, herbalists agree: "For weyknesse of ye brayne, sethe rosemaria in wyne and keep ye heed warme."The leaves of this tough, evergreen shrub are valued for both medicinal and culinary uses. And, the powerful antioxidant vitamins found therein do help the brain work better.


 

Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) is an especially aromatic member of the mint family. the Art of Wen HsuWhen grown in dry, poor soils in hot areas, a little protected, but touched by the winds, rosemary rewards us with minerals, vitamins, and antiseptic, antibacterial volatile oils which extract easily into water, vinegar, alcohol, and fat. While evergreen, and thus usable at any time of the year, rosemary is considered most medicinal when flowering.


A large pinch of dried rosemary in food acts as a preservative. A strong brew of the fresh or dried leaves makes a particularly effective wound wash.

 

Old herbals hint that rosemary exerts its influence magically as well as physically. Burned as an incense, twined into a wreath, or grown in a pot, rosemary protects the house and those who live in it, especially the women. Added to the wedding bouquet, it insures fidelity. Tied with silk ribbons and given to the wedding guests, it spreads loving kindness.


"As for Rosmarine, I let it runne all over my garden walls, not onlie because my bees love it, but because it is the herb sacred to remembrance, and, therefore, to friendship" said Sir Thomas More several hundred years ago, with a smile.

Juliette de Bairacle Levy repeats an old, old story about rosemary: When Mary and Joseph were fleeing with the infant Jesus, Mary placed her damp blue cloak on the rosemary bush to dry it. The rosemary, thus blessed, forever more has had blue flowers, and the absolute power to protect against evil. A sprig of rosemary hung by the door banishes all thieves; a bush of rosemary growing by the door allows only love to enter.

 

Rosemary is a traditional Christmas decoration, partly because it smells good, and partly because pruning rosemary back mid-winter makes it stronger and healthier. So don't hesitate to cut bunches of it for beauty. If you take your decorative rosemary down before it gets too dry, it can be used for cooking or as a smudge.

The dense smoke (smudge) produced by burning dried rosemary is equally favored in religious, mystical, and medicinal settings. When frankincense and myrrh—expensive and foreign resins—are in short supply, rosemary stands in for them in the church's—or the pagans—censors.

 

 

During the plague years, and thereafter in many hospitals, the burning of rosemary reliably cleared the air and countered airborne infections. By extension, rosemary was given to mourners to protect them from contagion. It was laid in the coffin to preserve the body. And it was cast into the grave at the end of the funeral.


In England, a branch of rosemary was placed in the dock of the courts of justice as a preventative against goal-fever. To ward off moths, lay it in your woolen chest.


European ladies, princesses, and even queens used rosemary in many ways to enhance their beauty.  They tied it into a cloth to keep fleas away; they smelled it to "keep youngly;" they soaked it in wine and used it to wash their faces so they would be "light and lovely;" they added it to their bath water so they would "wax shiny and be merrie;" and they stopped bad dreams by placing rosemary under the bed.


Modern ladies praise rosemary's ability to make their scalp healthy and dander free, and their hair lush, thick, and dark. To make a rosemary hair rinse, brew a full ounce of dried rosemary in a quart of boiling water overnight. After you've washed your hair, pour the dark, sweet-smelling rosemary liquid over your head, rubbing well into the scalp. Leave it be; no need to rinse it out.


If you have very bad dandruff, add a tablespoon of borax per half cup of rosemary hair rinse just before use. Lavaggio, a hair tonic made from an Italian folk recipe that is 99% rosemary, is available for sale for those who don't want to do it themselves.


Recent research has found that the heart has memory cells just like the brain. No wonder rosemary is renowned as a heart tonic, too! The oldest recipes call for soaking several handfuls of fresh rosemary in a large glass of white wine for several days, then sipping the wine to ease palpitations, strengthen weak hearts, and heal broken hearts. Rosemary in capsules, or rosemary tincture in large doses, can raise blood pressure however, so I stick to tea or external applications.


Rosemary infused oil or ointment (not the essential oil, which can cause poisoning) eases the pain of arthritis, improves flexibility of the joints, counters and sometimes cures eczema, and hastens wound healing. If you don't have the oil, rosemary tea can be used instead.


Rosemary tea has a beneficial effect on the lungs and breathing. If you have a cold, rosemary tea is happy to help you feel better. Too tired and sick to do anything? Just throw a big handful of rosemary in canned chicken soup and heat. For best effect, let steep for an hour, then eat it. Ahhh. When imbibing rosemary tea, feel free to add honey, especially if your throat is scratchy and sore.


Rosemary, like all its mint sisters, is antispasmodic, mildly so as a tea, more strongly in vinegar, and powerfully as a tincture. Not only does it relieve nervous pains and headaches, rosemary eases all digestive woes, from gas to gall bladder problems. A tablespoon or two of the vinegar on salad is an easy way to take this remedy. Because of the danger of kidney damage, I use small (1-5 drop) doses of rosemary tincture, and only occasionally.


As a seasoning, rosemary feeds the brain and helps prevent cancer. As a medicine, rosemary restores memory and improves digestion. No wonder boxes made of rosemary wood are considered magical. As rosemary is only happy when commanded by a woman, its magic is most suited to the needs of women. Perhaps Pandora's box was made of rosemary wood. For sure, your life will be more magical when you remember rosemary.

 

 As seen printed in Mystic Pop Magazine, www.mysticpopmagazine.com

© 2007, Susun S Weed

 

 

 

LOVE LETTERS

Dear Wise Women,

I once read an article by Susun Weed in a magazine about alternatives. The article was about weeds growing in busy urban polluted areas. Susun's very heretical view (I mean that as a complement!) was that these weeds because they processed the pollution made good medicine. I have a student that shares this view who is writing a paper about the benefits of weeds growing in the city cracks and how they are most appropriate for city dweller health issues. I read Susun's article about 5 years ago, I can't recall the name of the magazine but that article has always made me think. Can you remember where this article was published or how I can obtain it.

I would love to get a copy!

Sincere Love,
Mimi
Herbalist,

read more...


 

 


Susun Weed's
One Day Workshops

(Wise Woman Center, Woodstock, NY)

These one-day workshops (10AM-5PM) are taught outside among the plants, with Susun and the goats. Open to men and women, they include a wild-food lunch.

At each workshop we will identify, harvest, and use local plants for food and medicine. Registration Fee: $75.

Women can join us for a moon lodge on the Friday of each of these weekends.

Overnight lodging for Friday and Saturday nights is available nearby.

HEALING WISE: AUDIO CD
SET A (AUDIO VERSION)

HEALING WISE: AUDIO CD Includes the Three Traditions of Healing
Susun Weed reads aloud - just for you - her alternative medicine classic Healing Wise. Her wise observations and warm voice add special savor to a rich and satisfying feast of ideas about health and healing.
6 CD's; 5hrs, 33min

Buy this HEALING WISE SET A: AUDIO CD in our Bookshop

 

 

Healing Wise

by Susun S. Weed
Introduction by Jean Houston.
Superb herbal in the feminine-intuitive mode. Complete instructions for using common plants for food, beauty, medicine, and longevity. Seven herbs -- burdock, chickweed, dandelion, nettle, oatstraw, seaweed, and violet -- are explored in depth.
A Special Tenth Anniversary edition of this classic herbal, profusely illustrated. 312 pages.


Retails for $17.95
Read a Review

Order HEALING WISE in our Bookshop

I just started reading your book, Healing Wise. Your humor and approach to life seem so "down-to-earth", just like your favorite powerful weeds. Thank you for sharing and nourishing! ~ Diane


Healing Magic: A Green Witch Guidebook

by Robin Rose Bennett
Follow the path to physical and spiritual health with this how-to manual filled with ancient lore and wisdom. Using stories, songs, rituals, recipes, meditations, and trance journeys, it suggests more than 100 ways to practice the art of magical healing. Find out how to reconnect with the earth and draw on its energy, interact with the power of the seven chakras, make use of moon magic and women's wisdom, prepare herbal infusions and baths, work with the medicine wheel, and cast spells for love and wealth. No matter what your beliefs, this guidebook will open your heart and mind to the joys of everyday life.

Price: $14.95 plus shipping

Other articles by Robin Rose Bennett
An Herbalists Notebook part 1
An Herbalists Notebook part 2

Order HEALING MAGIC in our Bookshop

"Robin has been practicing Earth Spirit healing, herbalism and Wise Woman ways for twenty years and is an incredibly gifted spiritual teacher, healer and ceremonialist. Robin's powerful teachings come to the reader through a personal writing style that is immediately engaging, sharing practical wisdom through anecdote and example."
Jen Prosser, Sunstone Herbs

 

Study with Susun Weed via Correspondence Course

Green Witch focuses on personal and spiritual development. You'll create rituals, prepare an herbal first-aid kit, encounter your Goddess archetype, discover the magic of menstrual & menopausal changes, and develop wise woman ways of living and healing. Learn more ...

Green Allies explores herbal medicine through direct experiences with plants, plant spirits (fairies, devas), and plant medicines. For those who want to deepen, rather than broaden, their knowledge of plants: a year's worth of investigation and experimentation with one plant ally. Learn more ...

Spirit & Practice of the Wise Woman Tradition focuses on understanding, internalizing, and using the Three Traditions of Healing (Wise Woman, Heroic, and Scientific) and the Six Steps of Healing. Health-care practitioners find this course exceptionally helpful, but anyone who cares for the health of others (even family members) will benefit. Learn more ...

ABC of Herbalism!! This is a special course for the aspiring herbalist who'd like to have me "by your side" teaching you how to harvest, prepare, and use 52 healing herbs. Your studies will be both experiential and intellectual and you will make and use herbal remedies as well as reading about them in a variety of sources.
Learn more ...

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INDEX | MOTHER & CHILD | WISDOMKEEPERS | EMPOWER YOURSELF | WISE WOMAN WISDOM
ANTI-CANCER LIFESTYLE | GODDESS SPEAKS | GRANDMOTHER GAIA | FEATURED LINKS