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Retha’s Crystal Reflections

July 1st, 2018

The Power of Quartz

Ah quartz…my very favorite crystal type. I get excited about every single piece of quartz I own. Hopefully after reading this you will get excited about your quartz too, despite how small or humble your piece, it is a powerful tool! The variations are endless, each piece is unique in its exact formation, it’s colors and it’s inclusions. I wear & work with quartz every single day. I hope you will too after learning more about this treasure!

Quartz is silicon dioxide. It is a mineral that is composed of silicon & oxygen atoms. It has a hardness of 7 on the MOHS hardness scale. Quartz is the second most abundant mineral in the earths continental crust, behind feldspar. Quartz belongs to the trigonal crystal system. The ideal crystal shape is a 6 sided prism terminating with 6 sided pyramids at each end. In quartz crystals silicon and oxygen atoms are joined in a tetrahedron (4 sided triangular pyramid). Linked in spirals, they can be left or right handed. This structure accounts for quartz piezoelectricity. Pressure on a quartz crystal causes positive and negative charges across it (piezoelectricity). It was discovered that alternating electrical charges cause a piezoelectric crystal to vibrate, the basis for quartz use as oscillators to control radio waves or keep time. 

Quartz crystals have many commercial uses in fact. Quartz is used in watches and clocks and in a wristwatch vibrates more than 30,000 times per second! They are also used in computers, microwaves, TV, radios, medicine, credit cards, and industrial tools. In electronics they can change a mechanical force, such as a blow from a hammer, into electrical energy. 

Quartz crystals are valued for their beauty. They are often used in jewelry. Clear quartz is often called rock crystal.  The Quartz family includes many many varieties. By color, some are Amethyst (purple), Citrine (yellow), smoky (brown/black), rose (pink) and tangerine quartz (orange).

Beyond these, there are varieties named for their growth patterns or their mineral inclusions/occlusions. An inclusion is a deposit of another mineral within a quartz crystal. It radiates the energy of the mineral, focused and amplified by the quartz surrounding it. Some named for their growth patterns include sceptor quartz, faden quartz, nirvana quartz, elestial quartz, skeletal quartz, and cathedral quartz. 

Some examples of ones named for their inclusions are lithium quartz, rutilated quartz, golden healer quartz, hematoid quartz, mosaic quartz, harlequin quartz, shamans dreamstone, and phantom quartz. Phew….just to name some!! Then there are also many types that are named for their location of origin, such as Tibetan quartz, Vera Cruz amethyst, Congo citrine, Lemurians and herkimer diamonds! 

 

Properties of Clear Quartz

These are the properties of clear quartz. Keep in mind even within clear quartz the properties vary depending on the formations and inclusions mentioned above. Since quartz is a magnifier, it will magnify the properties of whatever the other mineral is, whether its within the quartz or growing with the quartz on the matrix. Clear quartz is the most powerful energy amplifier the earth due to its helical spiral crystalline form. It can absorb, store, release, and regulate energy. It raises energy to the absolute best state possible and is an amazing healing crystal because it goes back to your pre disease state. It acts as a soul and body cleanser as it cleanses the organs and the soul and connects the physical 3-D with the mind and soul. It can be used for any condition and is a master healer. 

Clear quartz stores info like a natural computer program. You can program quartz to take on the properties of any other crystal, and it acts as that crystal until you deconsecrate it for that purpose. Quartz is the ultimate crystal to keep in your arsenal. While I definitely enjoy having crystals at hand in all varieties, and I appreciate working with every minerals unique energy, if I could only have access to one crystal, it would 100%  be a nice piece of clear quartz. Hands down. 

Quartz can also be used to enhance psychic abilities and can attune you to your spiritual purpose. It also aids concentration, and unlocks memories. It helps to harmonize all the chakras in the body too.

Crystal healing is an ancient practice. It is thought that as light reflects off crystals the electromagnetic field of the body (the aura) then absorbs that energy. Then areas of dis-ease can be pinpointed and then healed. If you have a nice clear piece of quartz, you can use it as a scanner, running it down over the body while looking through the quartz to see areas that need healing. 

Wearing clear quartz daily is an excellent way to raise your overall vibration, as well as to amplify the other crystal jewelry you are wearing. You can also program your quartz jewelry to support specific intentions or energy streams. Doing this at the new moon is a great practice to incorporate into your routine. Having a lot of clear quartz in your home is an effective way to raise vibrations in your space. Spheres, generators and clusters are great choices. Not to mention they make beautiful additions to any decor. One place I would not recommend putting clear quartz is in the bedroom. Clear quartz can be disruptive to your sleep. Amethyst on the other hand is a great option within the quartz family to place in your sleep space.

It fascinates me that while quartz is widely available on every continent, there are some types that only grow in one place on the entire earth! Such as herkimer diamonds. Isn’t that incredible? I am lucky enough to be going to the Herkimer Diamond Gem Show this month as well as going mining in herkimer, NY while I’m there. Its been on my bucket list for awhile and I’m so excited! I will be writing an article all about my experiences in Herkimer. It will be in September’s column. I hope you will come back and check it out! In the meantime, I hope you learned something new about how truly magical clear quartz is and I hope this inspires you to get your quartz out and work with it! 

Crystal of the Month: Lemurians

First, a little background information. Lemuria was an ancient advanced society that pre-dates even Atlantis. It was also known as “Mu”. Lemuria was lost and sank to the bottom of the sea in a natural disaster long long ago. The Lemurians were wise energy workers. Lemuria was a civilization celebrating oneness, unconditional love, cosmic connection, humanity as a whole and healing. It was a matriarchal culture. Toward the end of the lemurian civilization, the physical beings were aware that a great change was coming. They set about to find a way to store their precious, vast knowledge on earth for later discovery. Its believed during the last 300 years or so, they were preparing for a cataclysm. Record storage was downloaded into seed crystals. They were then placed into the earth for later discovery. In these crystals, there are bar code like lines that are said to help you to download these important messages that were laser imprinted by this advanced race of beings. The key is in being able to touch these situations. 

Lemurian crystals are clear quartz points that are easily identified by the horizontal line patterns, or striations, that are present on some of the point faces. They resemble bar codes and are sometimes referred to as the “stairway to heaven”. These striations can be seen but more importantly FELT. If its a lemurian seed crystal, it will have the striations on alternating faces, or on 3 of the 6 faces. If its a lemurian, it can vary which faces the striations appear. Striations usually end in a triangular face, forming the apex of the crystal. Some are frosted or matte in appearance, while others are very clear. There are also lemurian root crystals, which grow beneath the seed crystals and are the rarest of the lemurian types available to us. They are covered in sacred markings such as shamans portals and are exceptionally clear. 

Lemurians can come in clear, smoky, pink, tangerine, and golden in color. They come in all sizes but should be in a wand shape tapering from a thicker base to a thinner point.

The first mention of Lemurian crystals was in the early 90’s and they were coined in a newsletter by Katrina Raphaell. She claimed that true Lemurians only came from one location, the Diamantina mine in Minas Gervias, Brazil. Others now believe that they can come from multiple places in the world. Hawaii for example is said to have a very strong Lemuria connection. I invite you to research this topic further and decide for yourself which school of thought resonates with you. 

Its believed that these crystals will find the right “keeper”, and when that keeper connects with it and starts working with it, the messages of ancient higher wisdom are then downloaded into our subconscious. The information can then be accessed by us when we are ready for their wisdom. I like to ask my new lemurian crystal prior to working with her for the first time, to please bless me with their guidance for my highest good and the highest good of mama Gaia. 

Lemurians are excellent tools for many purposes. They are perfect for energy workers, crystal healers, lightworkers and Reiki practitioners. Lemurians are believed to carry care or healing instructions for mother earth, and so of course are master healers for humans as well. They can’t be beat for personal healing tools. 

Another use is to use it during meditation. You can put the striations against your third eye, or by running your index finger on your left hand against the lines. They are considered to be a communication tool between us and the cosmos. These crystals are attracted to the people who will aid the planet in these times. 

Yet another use is in dreamwork. For greater access and recall to our dream state. Investigating your dreams aids in discovering your souls journey. 

You can use Lemurians to form a protective circle by holding the crystal in your right hand and encircling the person, room or location. 

Whichever way you choose to work with your lemurian know that the more you work with it the more powerful it will become. I could talk about Lemurians all day, but I hope this overview sparked your interest and you get a lemurian crystal to try!

Thanks for spending time with me this month and I wish you all many crystal blessings!!

XO Retha

Resources

The crystal bible-a definitive guide to crystals by Judy hall

Eyewitness crystal and gem by Dr. R F Symes and Dr. R R Harding

Sage Goddess blog “how to work with lemurian quartz crystals”

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About the Author:

Retha N. Lent has been married for 17 years to her husband Mark & they have four cats that are their life. She lives in Norristown, Pa. Retha has her Bachelor’s of Science degree in Behavioral Counseling Sciences from Drexel University. She is the owner of “Retha’s Crystals” & sells sterling silver unique crystal jewelry & specimens on her FB business page. She has a FB group for her customers and those interested in learning more about crystals & all things magical called “Retha’s Crystal Circle“. She is also an advisor in the Sage Goddess Affiliate Program. She has her Holistic Healing Certificate and Pillars of Priestessing certificates from Sage Goddess. She is also an Ordained Pagan Minister from the Universal Life Church. Retha has a passion for crystals, nature, astrology, working with moon cycles, ritual practices, tarot and oracle cards, runes, essential oils, herbs, manifestation work, ancient cultures, magic & music. Her favorite place is New Orleans, La. Retha has an extensive personal crystal collection and loves sharing her love of crystals with the world. She has been a practicing pagan since she was 16 years old. 

You can reach her at [email protected] or on her business page on FB: https://www.facebook.com/Rethas-Crystals-197411227666484/

Or in her FB group:

https://m.facebook.com/groups/1960619300929876

Her Sage Goddess affiliate link is:

www.sagegoddess.com/ref/84/

Or follow her on Instagram at @spookygirl16

A Beginners Guide to Choosing & Working with Crystal Shapes & Types

 

Crystals & stones come in so many varieties it can be quite overwhelming at first, this is an overview of how to choose the appropriate type for what you want to use your crystal for. Of course you can get creative and improvise, this is meant to help show you some of the options there are and what it all means. Most important when choosing a crystal to work with is how it makes you feel, touch it and get acquainted if you can. If buying online from a picture, spend a minute looking at the photo and observe how it makes you feel when tuning into it. Intuition can really help guide you to the perfect crystal tool for you. And experiment! That’s the fun of crystals! Your experience will be unique to you…there are no wrong choices. 

 

Spheres:

A sphere is a crystal or stone polished and carved into a sphere shape. They come in endless varieties & sizes. The main reason one would choose a sphere shape in particular, is because spheres radiate energy from all sides and in all directions. They are great for the home or on an altar to raise the energy of your space. If you wanted to bring love into your space, you would want a rose quartz or Rhodochrosite sphere for example. Spheres are also great to hold in your hands during meditation. 

 

Generators:

Generators are flat on the bottom and generally have six polished sides. They come to a point mostly but can have a  flat ridge on top too. They have many uses but my favorite use is in crystal gridding. They are perfect as the center point of the grid. You can use generators to direct energy in a certain direction as well, in the same way you would use a wand, as a generator is basically a wand with a flat bottom that can stand upright. Some like to collect generators and make a generator garden, which is simply a grouping of them. I personally have a big generator garden and I love it. Quartz generators in particular are ideal for use in gridding as quartz is the highest vibration crystal there is. 

 

Obelisks:

Obelisks are very similar to generators but instead of having six polished sides, they have four uniform sides. They resemble a tall pyramid. It has a flat square bottom. These are used for display, or used the same way as generators. 

 

Pyramids:

Exactly as it sounds, its a stone carved & polished into the shape of a pyramid and can be a four sided or three sided pyramid. They could be used in the center of a grid, used on an altar or in a space to bring in Egyptian energy, or simply enjoyed for their beauty. Pyramids are a sacred shape.

 

Tumbles:

A rock or crystal that’s been polished into a small to medium size, perfect for so many purposes. I like to carry tumbles in a medicine bag or pouch when I leave my house. Much less hard on the shoulders than traveling with palmstones or specimens! (Take my word on that lol)! Tumbles are also great for using in grids, wearing in your bra. They can be placed in bowls in your home, or can be placed in plants, or in a bag in your car, the sky’s the limit! I like to pick out a few tumbles each morning to travel with me throughout my day. I will hold them in my hand as needed. Its a great way to learn a stone a day if you’re new to crystals.

 

Palmstones/Pillows:

Palmstones are polished stones that are medium to large size that are made to fit into the palm of your hand and are usually an oblong shape. Many prefer to work with them in pairs, holding one in each hand during meditation or crystal healing sessions. Pillows are used the same as palmstones but are round shaped.

 

Worry stones/Thumb stones:

These are smaller polished stones that have a little thumb imprint or indentation in the middle, perfect for rubbing with your thumb when you are anxious or worried. These are excellent for children or people with anxiety. 

 

Hearts:

Stones carved into a heart shape, perfect for raising love vibrations. Many collect these, including myself.

 

Eggs:

Stones carved into egg shape. They are appropriate for representing new beginnings, fertility, the cycle of life, and are often seen at Imbolc on altars.

 

Faceted Meditation Stones:

These are carved and polished crystals with a flat bottom that are perfect for use in Crystal healing and meditations, placing it on the forehead or on chakra points along the body. Also rad for opening yourself up prior to readings or astral travel. 

 

Platonic Solids:

These six shapes are geometric symbols that are visual instruments that can bring our vibrations into harmony with the rhythms of nature. Working with crystals carved into these magical shapes are very powerful, especially when working with them all together. They sell sets of all the platonic solids that come in nice boxes. The platonic solids shapes include: tetrahedron, hexahedron, octahedron, icosohedron,  and dodecahedron. 

 

Points:

Points are the natural, not polished pieces of quartz or other minerals that grow in terminations. They are broken off of clusters or a matrix. Some points have multiple points or terminations. If a point has two points its called a twin, three points a triplet. Points are perfect for gridding and its good to use one for each cardinal direction. Points function as mini wands. 

 

Clusters:

These are a bunch or group of points or terminations on a matrix. Clusters come in all different sizes and shapes. They are stunning display pieces. I like to use clusters for charging jewelry overnight or when I’m not wearing it. Just drape your jewelry on top. You can charge your jewelry with the properties of the cluster its placed on!

 

Pendulums:

Pendulums are used for divination. Some also wear their Pendulums as necklaces. Pendulums are a crystal that is carved with a downward pointing tip that is suspended from a chain. They come in never ending variations and are quite beautiful. Some collect Pendulums. You can use them to get answers to questions with the use of a pendulum mat or board or by learning how it communicates. They will go left to right, up and down or in a circular clockwise or counterclockwise motion. 

 

Carvings:

Crystals or stones can be carved into almost anything. Some common carvings include animals, deities, skulls, angels, chalices, offering bowls, mortar and pestles, boxes, etc. They are fun to collect. 

 

Polished Massage Wands:

These are stones or crystals that are polished into the shape of a wand to be used for either massage, in meditation or in crystal healing or energy work.

 

Single-Terminated Wands:

These are natural or cut and polished points/wands that are used in directing energy, in ritual or in crystal healing. They are often used to make homemade wands and glued to the tips of wood or clay wands for use as a ceremonial wand. 

 

Double-Terminated Wands:

These have a point or termination on both ends, and can be natural or cut and polished into this formation. These are required for use in activation of crystal grids. Also the ideal tool for opening ritual circle or a protective circle or bubbling around yourself or a space. 

 

Crystal Jewelry:

One of my favorite ways to work with the properties of crystals is by wearing them! When looking for crystal jewelry, I recommend getting settings that are open in the back, that allow the crystal to have contact with your skin at all times. This will maximize their effect. They also make little metal cage pendants that allow you to put small crystals or tumbles into it and you can change out the stone as often as you like. If on a budget you can try your hand at wire-wrapping your crystals as well. These can be very simple or quite elaborate depending on your personal preference. 

If you are wanting to bring in prosperity and abundance for example, you would look for jewelry in citrine, pyrite or jade. And I recommend wearing quartz every day, as it will both keep your personal vibration high and amplify the properties of any other crystals you are wearing or working with. You can also program clear quartz to act “as if” it was any other crystal. This is unique to clear quartz. Just remember to unprogram it when you are finished working with it. I wear clear quartz always and it’s my can’t live without crystal for sure. Its a great place to start if you are new to crystals and its very common, readily available and inexpensive. 

I hope this brief overview has helped you to understand the many many different ways you can work with crystals, and how consciously choosing which type or shape of crystal you work with can help to amplify your intentions. Not to mention all the shapes and varieties are beautiful and stunning in a collection or on display!  Have fun and give one of these a try! Follow your intuition and your heart and it will lead you where you are meant to go.

 

Crystal of the Month

Yellow Apatite – THE Manifestation Crystal!

 

When I am doing ANY type of manifestation work or my new moon intentions, I ALWAYS work with yellow or golden apatite. I will pair it with another crystal that is appropriate for the work I’m trying to do. If I’m working on alignment for example, I would pair yellow apatite with blue Kyanite!

Yellow apatite has a hardness of 5 on the MOHS hardness scale and is a calcium phosphate mineral. It’s nae is derived from “to deceive” in Greek, because of it’s ability to look like many other crystals, as it can be blue, green, yellow/gold, brown, or colorless. It comes from Brazil, Burma, Madagascar, Sri Lanka, India, Mexico, Greenland, Canada, and the USA, but the largest known deposit is in Kirovsk, Russia.

Yellow Apatite is a solar plexus chakra stone and is one of the purest crystals of the yellow ray. A stone of strength, mental clarity, and of learning, it enhances confidence and charisma, prosperity and manifestation, of course. It carries the energy of the fire element and is an action stone. Use this when you want to birth a new business venture or creative project.

Create, Manifest and Go Get It!!! This is a vital crystal in everyone’s Crystal Toolbox!

 

I’m so glad you stopped in to read my column and hope you’ll come back next month. Happy Crystal Hunting!

Crystal Blessings! XOXO Retha

 

Resources:

The Crystal Bible– A Definitive Guide to Crystals – by Judy Hall – 2003

The Book of Stones, Revised Edition: Who They Are and What They Teach – by Robert Simmons – 2007

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About the Author:

Retha N. Lent has been married for 17 years to her husband Mark & they have four cats that are their life. She lives in Norristown, Pa. Retha has her Bachelor’s of Science degree in Behavioral Counseling Sciences from Drexel University. She is the owner ofRetha’s Crystals& sells sterling silver unique crystal jewelry & specimens on her FB business page. She has a FB group for her customers and those interested in learning more about crystals & all things magical called “Retha’s Crystal Circle“. She is also an advisor in the Sage Goddess Affiliate Program. She has her Holistic Healing Certificate and Pillars of Priestessing certificates from Sage Goddess. She is also an Ordained Pagan Minister from the Universal Life Church. Retha has a passion for crystals, nature, astrology, working with moon cycles, ritual practices, tarot and oracle cards, runes, essential oils, herbs, manifestation work, ancient cultures, magic & music. Her favorite place is New Orleans, La. Retha has an extensive personal crystal collection and loves sharing her love of crystals with the world. She has been a practicing pagan since she was 16 years old. 

You can reach her at [email protected] or on her business page on FB: https://www.facebook.com/Rethas-Crystals-197411227666484/

Or in her FB group:

https://m.facebook.com/groups/1960619300929876

Her Sage Goddess affiliate link is:

www.sagegoddess.com/ref/84/

Or follow her on Instagram at @spookygirl16

 

Oh crystals, how I love you so. Where and how do I even begin to describe my connection with them. You know that feeling you get with an animal, when you squeeze them and nuzzle your nose into them, and your whole body just resonates with love? Well that’s me with crystals and minerals, I just have to be a little more careful because rocks aren’t so furry and squishy! Seriously though, when I walk into a crystal shop or mineral and gem show I am like a kid in a candy store. When I find crystals or stones that call to me, I immediately want to hug them. I’m not sure why, other than to say that I feel so much love emanating from them that my first instinct is to hold them close. Being surrounded by crystals is my true happy place, they are what grounds me, as they should since they are from the earth; true gifts from Gaia and I honor them as such.

crystal

 

Crystals and minerals aren’t just beautiful gifts from the earth, no, they’re multifaceted (pun intended). Not only do they bring people joy, these beauties have been used as healing tools for centuries. It wasn’t until I became a Solitary Eclectic Witch that I learned of their metaphysical properties, which only transcended my love for them.

My dad, who was a rock hound in his younger years, is the reason for my connection with these earthy treasures. I can remember combing river beds and asking my dad what to look for. He would just say, “Sis, pick up whatever rock looks pretty to you.” That has always stuck with me, and I’m happy to say that I’ve done exactly that. I love all types of crystals and minerals, from the rough to the highly polished. I will say that other than spending time with my family, nothing makes me smile more than finding a beautiful mineral shining up to me from either a river/creek bed, a sandy beach, a rock and gem show or in my dad’s rock garden.

crystal1

 

I have memories of my dad cutting and polishing some of his finds. He also made some beautiful pieces of jewelry for my mom. Even when he wasn’t able to rock hound anymore or to even leave the bed in his later years, he still found ways to buy stones, gems and crystals for me to put to use in my own jewelry creations or to just place in my sacred spaces. I didn’t get into jewelry making until I was in my thirties, but when I did he was my greatest supporter. He’d buy some faceted gems and honored me by asking if I would make my mom something special.

crystal2

 

My dad journeyed to Summerland a year ago and there are so many things I miss about our daily interactions. I feel the loss especially when I find a stone or I’ve thought of a jewelry design that I think he’d really love. I often still talk to him as if he were standing next to me and sometimes I think I can hear him laugh, or feel him nod in approval. I will forever be grateful to him for introducing me to these earthy gifts but most of all I’m thankful to have shared that love with him.

crystal3

Septarian

In my opinion this stone is truly fascinating. I have on many occasions gotten lost in the patterns that occur naturally in this mineral. Septarian consists of a combination of Calcite, Aragonite and Limestone along with other minerals depending on the particular stones origins. It’s also known as a Dragon Stone because it’s thought to contain all four elements, but doesn’t it look like a dragon’s egg? Especially when it’s in the form of an egg! It brings to mind what I imagine a dragon’s egg would possibly look like, or at the very least a prehistoric egg of some sort. It really is a striking stone.

It’s said that this stone is millions of years old, made from molten lava melting the perfect combination of minerals to create this earthly gem. With that being said, I was surprised to find that Septarian’s weren’t listed in many of my crystal books. Not that I believe what’s written is always correct, or that its the only way to define a crystals purpose, but it is nice to have a starting point or additional information when you purchase or receive a new crystal. I’m hoping the authors will someday write a revised edition to their books to include this lovely gem.

This stone is said to be used by Shamans for grounding during their journey work. My personal experience with this crystalline structure is when once held, I felt immediately grounded and in sync with the rhythm of the Earth’s energies. On occasion when I have to go to a party or social gathering and I’m feeling a little self conscious or unsure, I will add a Septarian to the stones that I already carry for security and protection. Another reason to carry this crystal is to help boost your self confidence. Whether you’re at a social gathering where many of the attendees are unknown to you, or you’re at school or work and have to speak in front of your peers, this stone will be an asset to help you gain the confidence and conviction to do just that. Septarian’s are really just an all around fantastic stone to have and I hope to add many more to my collection very soon.

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About the Author:

Shiron (Shi) Eddy hails from the Pacific Northwest and shares a home with her husband, a Great Dane and a cat. Her love for crystals and minerals came from her dad who was an avid rock hound in his younger years. Shi happily shares her knowledge of crystals with anyone who is drawn to them, but especially loves to help people connect with minerals that involves their metaphysical properties. When she’s not networking with other crystal and mineral lovers, Shi can be found making jewelry, painting, crocheting Goddess dolls, selling her wares at shows or spending time with family and friends. You can find her jewelry in her shop ShiJewels or follow her on Instagram.

Notes from the Apothecary: The Poppy

With colors ranging from a delicate, golden yellow to brash, bold scarlet, the poppy is a self-contained paradox. Powerful, yet delicate and short lived, this evocative flower has been associated with sleep, death and rebirth for many centuries. This connection comes from the fact that opium, a powerful drug used for inducing sleep and trance like states, is derived from the seed pods of one particular kind of poppy, papaver somniferum. It is possible that humans have been cultivating this poppy since 6000 BC.

Red poppies are also a symbol of remembrance, ever since the trench warfare that took place in World War One in the poppy fields of Flanders. They are used to remember those who fell in defense of other; soldiers and warriors, ancestors who died in battle and those who were affected by the horrors of war. In the UK especially, some people feel like the red poppy glorifies war, but they still wish to honor those who died, in which case they wear a white poppy. This signifies that they do not agree with war on principle, but that they respect and remember the sacrifice made by those who had no choice but to fight.

The Kitchen Garden

Poppies are classed as an herbaceous plant, and are grown mainly for their flowers and seeds. Many of the flowers are highly elaborate, having double or semi-double layers of petals. The red, multi-layered poppies always remind me of Spanish flamenco skirts.

As well as being a beautiful addition to any garden, poppies are very practical. The seeds are delicious, and are often used as decoration and flavor for breads, cakes, buns and muffins. As well as tasting great, like most seeds, they are a great source of protein. They are also high in calcium, so ideal for a dairy free diet.

The oil can be extracted from poppy seeds and used as a cooking oil, or for salad dressings and in baking.

The Apothecary

It should come as no surprise to learn that poppy seeds have been used throughout history as a painkiller, considering they contain the raw ingredients of morphine. They also contain tiny amounts of codeine. The Ancient Egyptians are known to have employed poppy seeds for this purpose, but they must have used them while very fresh as the opiate contents tends to fade quickly upon harvesting.

The Witch’s Herbal

The red poppy is a sacred symbol of Demeter, and as such is perfect for decorating any altar you may have to this Greek goddess of agriculture and law. The Minoans also evidently had a poppy goddess, as shown in the clay statuette found at Gazi. This ancient goddess with arms reaching to the sky has her headdress decorated with poppy seed capsules, showing that the cult that revered this goddess placed special, religious significance on the poppy. This may have been due to its narcotic properties, or the simple significance of the cycles of life, death and rebirth. Either way, it’s clear that poppies are a powerful symbol of at least two ancient cults. Using the poppy today can help us connect to these ancient goddesses.

Also within the Greek pantheon, we have Hypnos and Thanatos, the gods of sleep and death, respectively. These twin gods were both depicted with crowns of poppies, once again reinforcing the association between poppies and sleep and death. Death is a kind of sleep that never ends, and being asleep is so close to death in many ways. The poppy reminds us that just because something looks like one thing, it may actually be something completely different. We should examine and reexamine, and be sure of what we are seeing before jumping to conclusions. It reminds us to be less judgmental, more open-minded, and to appreciate the benefits of sleep and dreams.

Dreams are a doorway into our subconscious. And, while our subconscious kicks out some weird stuff most of the time, it can also send us important messages, including messages from our gods and ancestors.

Home and Hearth

Try keeping a dream journal. This can be a hard habit to get into, as you have to remember to write your dreams down the moment you awake from them. If not, you tend to lose details and the whole dream may even fade within a few minutes.

Before sleeping, meditate on an image of a poppy. A red poppy is the one most associated with sleep and dreams, but if a different color has more meaning for you, that’s fine too. Breathe, relax and imagine each petal of the poppy as a layer of your subconscious. Imagine you will be allowed to explore each layer, just as you can clearly see each beautiful petal of the poppy. Immerse yourself in the sense that your subconscious will open for you, blooming like a great flower, with answers and insight.

Keep a notepad and pen next to your bed. That way, even if you wake up at 3am, you can scribble down the contents of your dreams. Don’t worry if you can’t always remember them. The human mind is complex and temperamental! Write what you can and use it to look for patterns, imagery and symbolism.

I Never Knew…

The pain-killing drug morphine, derived from poppy opium, takes its name from Morpheus, the Ancient Greek god of dreams and sleep.

*Image credit: Welsh Poppies in Post Hill Woods, copyright Mabh Savage 2018; the Poppy Goddess at Heraklion Archaeological Museum via Wikipedia; poppies on Lake Geneva via Wikipedia.

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About the Author:

Mabh Savage is a Pagan author, poet and musician, as well as a freelance journalist.

She is the author of A Modern Celt: Seeking the Ancestors and Pagan Portals – Celtic Witchcraft: Modern Witchcraft Meets Celtic Ways.

 

Follow Mabh on TwitterFacebook and her blog.

 

 

For My Witches in the Wardrobe

(Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash)

 

I have come again to sit in the closet with you and share in our circle of thoughts, ideas, knowledge, & secrets in solidarity. I am very excited to be here again with you! This time in my Carpet Bag I’ve brought none other than a seasonal favorite for us all, Flowers!! What could be more beautiful, witchy, yet mundane then those? Everyone can use them, and we sure as heck need them!

Many beautiful plants bloom through spring and summer into fall. If you are not a gardener and did not plant your own, that is fine, there are many home improvement shops with bright blooming flowers and local nurseries, as well. You can easily move these flowers into your own pots to make them even more lovely.

Before we delve deeper into the meanings of plants let’s go into the way we can display these beauties. These are normal, everyday displays that do not bring attention to the witch.

 

Flower Window Boxes & Planters

(Photo by Anastasiia Tarasova on Unsplash)

 

Now a Flower Window Box or Planters can be anything from a small box on your balcony filled with fragrant herbs to a potted plant on your window sill blooming with something bright and fragrant. Remember it is the room you have. It doesn’t have to be anything grand. It just has to be right for you!

 

(Photo by Artur Aleksanian on Unsplash)

 

If you have a small garden outside you can put your Plants & Herbs in movable Planters and Pots to keep them safe from weather, making them easier to move about. Then, you can, also, move your scents about.

 

Along a Fragrant Path

(Photo by Felicia D’Ascanio on Unsplash)

 

If you have a pathway around your house, maybe leading to your backyard, or from your driveway, placing flowers along each side makes a fragrant walkway.

 

Bowers & Hedges

 

(Pink Rose Bower)

 

Now if you like a bit more drama You can go for something like this, a Bower. They are quite stunning. They don’t scream witch either, just gardener. A nice fragrant hedge adds to the party, too.

 

The Magick of Plants

Now let’s get into the magick of some plants. This is where our fun begins. While everyone is admiring your beautiful garden you are thinking inside what all those uses are for those beauties.

 

Some of the More Fragrant Flower I Have Found to Have Around Are:

 

Sweet Pea: It attracts friends & Allies. It draws the loyalty & affections of others to you.

 

 

Heliotrope: Brings cheerfulness, gaiety, prosperity, & protection. Use in rituals of Drawing Down the Sun or in magickal workings requiring strengthening of the solar aspects of the self. Place under your pillow to induce prophetic dreams. It is said that if you sleep with fresh heliotrope under your pillow, you will dream of the person that has been stolen from your home. Other Names for Heliotrope: Turnsole & Cherry Pie

 

 


Tulip: Because of the many colors and parts of Tulips, they can be used in many parts of magick. Here is a good link to some information Tulip Magic Legend and Folklore at Thought Co.

 

Geranium: For overcoming negative thoughts & attitudes, lifting spirits, promoting protection & happiness. Repels insects. Balances mind and body.

 


Hyacinth: It promotes peace of mind and peaceful sleep. Also, attracts love, luck, & good fortune. Named for Hiakinthos, Greek God of homosexual love, this is the patron herb for gay men. Guards against nightmares when used as an oil, burned as incense, or included in dream pillows. Carry in amulet or sachet to ease grief or the pain of childbirth.

 


Freesia: Used in spells for love, peace, lust, pheromones, harmony, comfort.

 


Datura: Datura is also known as jimsonweed and you can find some incredible information on Tess Whitehurst’s Site Live Your Magic.

 


Lavender: It’s magickal uses include love, protection, healing, sleep, purification, and peace. It promotes healing from depression. Great in sleep pillows and bath spells. Believed to preserve chastity when mixed with rosemary. Burn the flowers to induce sleep and rest, then scatter the ashes around the home to bring peace and harmony. Use in love spells and sachets, especially those to attract men. Also known as, Spke, Nardus, Elf Leaf, & Nard.

 

Rose: Magickal uses include divine love, close friendships, domestic peace/happiness, and lasting relationships. Great for use in incense, potpourri or bath magick. Place around sprains and dark bruises to help them heal faster.

 

Narcissus: Calms vibrations and promotes harmony, tranquility, and peace of mind. Also known as, Asphodel, Daffy Down Lily, Fleur de Coucou, Goose Leek, Lent Lily, & Porillon.

 


Violet: It calms the nerves, draws prophetic dreams and visions, stimulates creativity, and promotes peace & tranquility. Violet leaf provides protection from all evil. Violet crowns are said to cure headaches and bring sleep. Carry or give to newly married couples or new baby & mother to bring luck to the bearer. Keep a spray of violets on the altar to enhance night magick. Wear the leaves in a green sachet to help heal wounds and prevent evil spirits from making the wounds worse. Also called: Sweet Violet, Blue Violet, & Wild Violet.

 

Lily of the Valley: Is soothing, calming, draws peace and tranquility, and repels negativity. Assists in empowering happiness and mental powers. Use in magickal workings to stop harassment. Married couples should plant Lily of the Valley in their first garden to promote longevity of the marriage. Note: Poisonous, use with caution. Also know as, Jacob’s Ladder, Male Lily, Our Lady’s Tears, Ladder-to-Heaven, May Lily, Constancy.

 

Wisteria: It raises vibrations, promotes psychic opening, overcomes obstacles, and draws prosperity.

 

Lilac: Wisdom, memory, good luck and spiritual aid. Also called: Common Lilac.

 

Peony: For protection from hexes and jinxes. Good luck, good fortune, prosperity, and business success. Hang in the home or car for protection. Used to attract faeries. Use in rituals to cure or reduce lunacy. Warning: While the flowers & petals have the positive qualities listed, the seed is called ‘Jumby Bean’ and is known for promoting dissension and strife.

 

 

Honeysuckle: It draws money, success, and quick abundance; Aids persuasiveness and confidence, sharpens intuition. Ring green candles with honeysuckle flowers or use honeysuckle in charms & sachets to attract money. Crush the flowers and rub into the forehead to enhance psychic powers. Also Called: Woodbine, Jin Yin Hua, Dutch Honeysuckle, Goat’s Leaf.

 

Jasmine: It’s uses include snakebite and divination; good for charging quartz crystals. Use in sachets and spells to draw spiritual love and attract a soul mate. Carry or burn the flowers to draw wealth and money. Use in dream pillows to induce sleep or burn in the bedroom to bring prophetic dreams. Helps to promote new, innovative ideas. Also Called: Pikake, Ysmyn, Jessamin, Moonlight on the Grove

 

Now remember, these are just a few!! There are so many flowers out there with magickal uses, those without scents, like ferns for instance!!! They are good for mental clarity, cleansing, purification, and dispelling negativity. Keep them in your room where studying is done to help concentration. Burn a sprig of fern before an exam. Use in sachets and amulets for powerful auric protection. Now did you know that???

 

Creating Your Own Flowers

There are ways to bring flowers into the home for those of us allergic to flowers, without green thumbs, or who just like to craft. If you are not allergic and are just like to create or lack a green thumb you can add essential oils to the following creations.

I have found many crafty ways on the net to create flowers and I am happy to share the following with you:

 

How to Make Lavender Flowers from Crepe Paper

 

Simple Realistic Hydrangea

 

How to Make Crepe Paper Rose

 

There are so many more tutorials on YouTube for different types & sizes of flowers made from a variety of different materials. You can really have some run.

 

How to Incorporate Flowers Into Your Craft

This is the easy part. Flowers can be brought into your craft in many simple ways that will not bring attention to the witch. You can simply wear one in your hair. I’m not even talking about the headband crowns that are popular these days, but a single one behind the ear is fine. Say, a simple violet to calm the nerves.

 

(Photo by Brooke Cagle on Unsplash)

 

There is nothing wrong with a vase of fresh cut flowers or even planted flowers around the home.

How about a nice bowl of floral pot potpourri?

Sachets for your drawers & closets?

There are garden/seed growing kits in stores made for specific reasons. This one gives you all you need to grow yourself lavender and then turn it into a facial scrub! How relaxing is that for a nice Witch Spa Day!

 

All of these can be mixed into mojo bags and witchy doings. It’s all in the eye of the Magick Maker.

 

Until Next Time…

I bid you farewell for now in this aromatic jungle of ideas.

Stay Witchie, even if it’s just between you and me -xoxo

***

About the Author:

Jennifer Sacasa-Wright is simply a Witch. She runs PaganPagesOrg eMag.  She loves hearing your opinions & thoughts on the eMagazine and welcomes comments. You can email her at jenniferwright at paganpages dot org.  When she is not working on PaganPagesOrg she is creating in some other way & trying to make the world a better place with her family.

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