Chamomile - Matricaria recutita (Whole) (German)

1 Oz
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Of all the herbs in the western herbalist's material medica Chamomile is perhaps the most universally useful - with its help, a skilled herbalist can ally almost any affliction. Chamomile looks like an overgrown Daisy and indeed it belongs to the same family of plants. It is a great blessing that something so useful is also so common, though familiarity breeds contempt, causing us to loose sight of our herbal blessings. Chamomile has been used and revered since ancient times and all the great herbalists of antiquity praise it highly. It is even a healer to other plants it grows near, which has earned it the name of 'plant's physician' - only bees seem to dislike its smell.

Medicinal: Chamomile radiates joy, peace and simplicity. It has a way of creating order out of chaos, when the inner balance has been disturbed. It is a tonic for the nervous system, soothing, yet strengthening the nerves without stimulation, which has a roll-on effect on just about all the other bodily systems. It takes the edge off frazzled nerves that keep us from finding sleep at night or make it impossible to properly digest our food. It calms a nervous stomach and soothes any inflammatory conditions of the digestive system, including ulcers and colitis. Its calming effects are also helpful in IBS, colic or diarrhea. Chamomile is decongestant and one of the best remedies to treat a head cold with excessive mucus and blocked up sinuses. Externally it soothes all types of inflammatory skin conditions and sore or sensitive spots. It has often been called a mother's herb, for it can soothe most problems mothers have to deal with, from nappy rash to teething problems, to upset tummies or frenzied screaming fits and hyperactivity. Last but by no means least, it also soothes and strengthens the mother's nerves and helps her deal with it all.

Magical: Chamomile is a gentle, yet powerful herb of the sun that brings peace, serenity and light to the soul and calms all sense of fretting or fear. It is an excellent herb for chakra balancing and to help one find one's inner center. Chamomile may inspire confidence and open the heart to expressing love and compassion. It can also be used for dream work, as it protects the seeker on his astral journeys and wards off demonic entities and nightmares. It is used to bring clarity of vision for divination and scrying, and may also be used for prophetic dreams. Chamomile has a reputation for attracting good fortune, especially in monetary matters.

Shamanic Magical Uses: This is the plant of Asgard, the land of the Aesir. Its English name Maythen was originally pronounced Maegthen, as can be seen from the Lacnunga poem, and maeg is cognate to mage, meaning powerful. Chamomile is a solar plant, and it harnesses the power of the Sun. As the plant of golden Asgard, it can be burned in recels or scattered as a way to send your words straight to the Aesir and have them hear you. I suspect few of them would ignore you if you were holding Maegthen in your hand. It burns away the darkness and the creeping negativity, as its medicinal nature as an antifungal demonstrates. Used magically, it can be a powerful antidepressant. Why, then, does it cause sleep? One of the symptoms of depression is actually a lack of good, solid, peaceful sleep, and Chamomile is the best plant for this purpose.

There is also that finding a way out of depression is a long, slow journey that may require changes in brain chemistry, a finicky business at best. This sort of thing is best done slowly and quietly, over time, preferably on a sleeping person. To bring the Sun into someone's life, give them tea made from charged and hallowed Chamomile that has been asked to slowly purge the depressing chemicals from their brain, every night when they go to sleep, for a long time, perhaps months. One day they may find that they no longer need it, but if it does nothing after three turns of the moon, there is something going on that even this herb cannot cure, and you can discontinue it.
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