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Star Anise

I love aromatic herbs, seeds, and roots.  I love the way the scent lingers in the nose and the way memories can flood the mind with one sniff. With the New on this week I feel called to talk about a moon herb, one with connections to Mercury as well. This week I talk about star anise.

Star anise is something we all have at home, that cool looking dark star with a powerful scent and taste. In the world of magic its associated with a few different elements and planets. Star anise is associated with both the elements of water and air, as well as the Moon, Mercury, and Neptune.

I feel star anise is the perfect herb (seed) to focus on for the New Moon in Virgo. This seed is the union of moon and mercury, of water and air, of La Luna in the sign of Virgo. Keywords for star anise are clairvoyance, dream work, meditation, deepening psychic abilities, and protection

Moon herbs are great for emotions, intuition, divination, psychic abilities, and spellwork. Mercury herbs help us achieve clear thinking, efficient communication and supports us in decision-making. When you combine the two you have a great magical ally to help you write your New Moon wish lists and conduct your rituals.

  • Ways to work with star anise:
  • Carry the seeds or the pod for luck, clairvoyance and psychic awareness.
  • Drink star anise tea or keep the pods in a pouch to promote astral projection and psychic ability
  • Anise seeds carried in a sachet is believed to ward off the evil eye
  • Add it to amulets for purification and renewal
  • Star anise is believed to help one contact other planes, add some to your altar the next time you work with your ancestors, guides or deities
  • Use in dream pillows to keep away nightmares
  • Fresh anise leaves or anise seeds used in a potpourri will protect a room from evil spirits and intentions
  • It can be used in holy waters for blessing and exorcisms

Star anise has so much to offer medicinally and magically. If you feel called to do so initiate a relationship with it, let it assist you as you get your New Moon magic on this week. Or any other time you feel called to work with it.

This Virgo New moon brings with it themes of self-sacrifice, healing, "cleaning up" our lives, and examining whether we take care of ourselves as well as we do others. Virgo is the sign of harvest, the nurse, the healer, the practical life coach. However, for true healing and health to take place we have to take care of ourselves too. Star anise is protective, in our day to day lives we can reflect on our boundaries and how well we protect ourselves.

New Moons can bring an energetic clean slate, it's a nice time to do a clearing or energy detox. A cord cutting ritual could be useful too! Along with all this, you can create a ritual pouch with star anise or add it to your home to keep what you just released out of your space. The possibilities are endless, tune into yourself and listen.

There are numerous ways to infuse the ideas above with rituals for this new moon. Let the information sit with you and create a ritual which inspires you and speaks to you.

 

Until next time,

Anais

Instagram | @mysticalmandrakeroot

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Peppermint 

I adore peppermint, it's refreshing, uplifting and cooling all at once. This fragrant and versatile herb has so much to offer magically and medicinally. Peppermint is associated with the planet Mercury, the element of air, and the astrological sign of Virgo. Keywords for it are healing, money, protection, divination, visualization, cleansing, and renewal.

One of the soul vibrations of peppermint is to create change and get things moving. If you've felt stuck or idle for a while peppermint may be a nice edition to your self-care kit. This may be one of the reasons why peppermint is also associated with the transformative power of the fire element. Peppermint teaches us about renewal and helps us move with awareness through transitions as well as helps us unblock our energies. With a recent Full moon, some of us may have had old wounds dug up or negative patterns reappear. If so work with peppermint to change your vibration and to release the old. You can drink the tea, carry some leaves with you or save a small amount of your tea and sprinkle that in the bath. (If your skin gets along with peppermint of course).

We can do some much with peppermint, we can grow it, cook with it, create magic with it and drink it. As a tea peppermint helps relieve indigestion, gas, motion sickness, and can provide some comfort during colds.Peppermint laid on the altar is believed to call in good spirits to aid you in your magic. Or course it's always important to state your intentions and protect your space, but this can be a great addition to your work. Peppermint is ideal for healing and protection rituals and can be carried in pouches for this same purpose. Peppermint helps clear the air of a room or space, then raising the vibration.

 

More ways to work with peppermint:

  • Peppermint tea aids in divination, drink some before you divine
  • Place a few leaves in your wallet to attract money
  • Place it in the home to help protect it
  • Due to its association with Venus, it makes a great edition to love blends
  • Peppermint makes a great edition to prosperity spells
  • Added to incenses it cleanses the home or ritual area

If you are interested in working with the oil, start small. It has a strong smell and can cause a rash on sensitive skin. Dilute it with a carrier oil. It's a good rule to know about essential oils and skin safety first. Peppermint is useful in travel magic, so the next time you fly or drive perhaps a little peppermint in a pouch can be a protective guardian. If you don’t have peppermint at home you can use other mints in its place.  

Until next time,

 

Anais

Instagram | @mysticalmandrakeroot

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Chrysanthemum |

This week we talk about a special flower that I was saving for November. However, the last two days I've been in a deep romance with it, so I think it wants the spotlight sooner than later.

Chrysanthemum is associated with the Sun and the element of fire. This magical flower has long been used for ancestral altars, Samhain rituals, house blessings and burial rituals. Keywords for it are longevity, mental clarity, protection, and soothing grief.

Chrysanthemum can be sprinkled about the home to calm tempers and anger, as well as in the bath to improve the mood and clear one's energy. One simple bath ritual you can do: take a bath with whole fresh flowers placed in the water. At the end of the bath break the stems of the flowers and dispose of them. You can visualize that the stems represent negative energy or attachments. Of course, when putting anything in the bath be smart, so you don't clog your drain.

It's officially September, as both an Autumn lover and Halloween fanatic this herb is a natural Fall favorite. We still have some time to go, but as we get closer to Samhain the veil between worlds grows thinner each day. One could work with this flower anytime for protection, but if you haven't yet this is a good time to start. Since its Virgo season and all, let's get into some details. There is deeper information in the color of flower you choose to work with.

Chrysanthemum flowers & the magic meaning by color:

  • Red | love, passion
  • Purple |  power, good health
  • Pink | friendship, optimism
  • White | loyalty, honesty
  • Yellow | healing during times of sorrow, friendship

Chrysanthemum is rich with meaning and magic. As a gift (or offering) they can represent sympathy, respect, appreciation, and honor. You can place the flowers in sachets or on your altar for various kinds of spell work. This flower is mostly associated with these themes: Life and rebirth, loyalty and devotion (both platonic & romantic), recovery, friendship and support from loved ones.

If this flower could speak, I like to think it would ask us to honor ourselves and protect our magic. To know we are deserving of loyalty, love, and friendship. It would tell us to remain resilient in the face of challenges and be strong during the process of recovery. We must honor all our cycles, this includes both the endings and the beginnings.

 

Until next time,

Anais

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Fennel | Strength and Resilience

Fennel has a long history of use in folklore and magic. We know it best as a culinary gem, but it has great magical and spiritual uses as well. Fennel is associated with Mercury and the elements of air and fire. Keywords for it are confidence, fertility, courage, longevity, and protection.

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When I think on fennel I see the visual of the four of wands card in the Herbal Tarot. In this deck, they associate the stabilizing energy of the four of wands with fennel. In numerology, the number four is associated with foundation and stability. Then we get to the wands themselves, this is the suit of strength and the will. As we reflect on all these elements together we can see how this is the perfect representation of fennel. It's in fennels nature to act as a builder, it not only helps us defend ourselves but it helps us build our boundaries and increase our strength.

Fennel has a long history of use in magic. It has been used as a floor wash for protection and to keep intruders away. It can be hung over doorways to keep away evil and the seeds put into keyholes to keep out ghosts. In the past, Roman soldiers would chew the seeds before battle. Fennel has long been used in initiation rites as well as rites for transformation. Fennel seeds can teach us a lot about stability, preservation, and grounding. This is a great addition to any self-care kit, we have featured fennel in this months Virgo promotion. Virgo is the sign of the harvest, of doing the work that needs to be done and of physical health. Fennel and Virgo walk hand in hand helping us learn, grow and stand our ground.

More ways to use Fennel in magic:

  • For protection use in sachets, in incense, and around the house
  • Put Fennel in sachets for longevity, fertility, love, healing, strength, and to prevent negativity
  • Drink a tea of fennel or add it to your food to improve the memory
  • Combine Fennel with other herbs to prevent curses, possession, and negativity
  • Combine Fennel with St. John’s Wort for a protective door charm and to repel spirits

Fennel has many healing, magical and medicinal properties. By forging a bond with Fennel we can learn to better protect ourselves, we can learn to find and connect to our center and to build our own foundations. From that place, we can truly enjoy and value what we have accomplished in life. With a strong foundation, we can enjoy the ways we are prosperous and celebrate ourselves on the deepest levels.

 

Until next time,

Anais

Instagram | @mysticalmandrakeroot

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The Magic of Amber

In magic, amber is a powerful protector. It has long been used for a wide range of spells, including for fertility, luck and drawing success. Amber is believed to increase psychic abilities and can help clear away the nastiest of vibrations. If you want to clear away the gunk, strengthen your boundaries and bring in the light then amber is the one for you.

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Frankincense | The Crone of Resins

There are a number of things that come to mind with I think about the world of Magic. Of course I think of candles, pentacles, herbs and chants but one thing that always comes to mind is Frankincense.

This is one of the oldest documented magical resins. It has been burned for thousands of years in many worlds of spiritualism and religion to purify, protect, and connect one to the divine. Frankincense is associated with the Sun and the elements of air and fire. The two common forms it comes in are resin and the essential oil. Keywords for it are: magic, protection, cleansing, healing, spirituality and exorcism.  

The vibrations of this spicy warm resin is believed to be so strong, that they can drive away the most stubborn of negative energies. Frankincense when burned or used for aromatherapy uplifts a space, and the person's auric field as well. Those seeking to deepen their meditation can benefit from this resin because it helps us reach deeper levels of spirituality. Emotionally, some even believe it helps alleviate mood and lift depression.

I most often work with the essential oil, I carry it with me to center and I burn the resin when I need a deep cleaning of my space and magical tools. One of my most extreme experiences with Frankincense happened at a hotel. When I arrived I was not pleased because there was an unpleasant spirit right outside my room. I did all my normal things to grid and protect the space but that stubborn thing was still trying to get into the room. So I took my frankincense oil and made an emergency protection spray with a small black tourmaline inside of it. I sprayed  all the corners and windows while chanting.  That night and beyond, I slept like a baby and for the rest of my stay. No more interruptions from whoever that unpleasant energy was.

More on Frankincense:

  • Frankincense makes a great offering for Sun gods/deities
  • Burn frankincense in the home to encourage good health
  • Add frankincense to any incense blend to increase the potency
  • Add frankincense to sachets for luck, protection and spiritual growth

Frankincense resin can be burned over hot coals in a fireproof bowl or container.
It is often found crushed and mixed with other resins, especially with myrrh. Always remember to practice some general fire safety so you can burn the resin in your space without hurting yourself or setting off your fire alarms. Start small as resins burning on coal emit a lot of smoke! A little goes a long way.

Frankincense oil has long been used in perfumes and in ritual anointing oils. It has a history of use in rites of passage as well. The oil can be used to anoint sacred objects and spaces that need to be purified. To make an anointing oil: combine frankincense with a carrier oil. You can add other appropriate oils as well.

I love to think of Frankincense as h great Crone of magical resin, it has so much to offer us.  I believe this resin is a must have for all magic and self care kits.

 

Until next time,

Anais

Instagram: @mysticalmandrakeroot

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Yerba Santa | Guardian of the Heart

I love discovering the power of an herb in an organic way. I find joy in having the herb call to me, like an initiation process. It must be that whole 8th house Sun thing, I want the deepest experience possible. Last year while working at a cozy little shop, I noticed we finally had Yerba Santa in stock. I knew about it vaguely, but I had no personal experience with it at the time. Yerba Santa is connected to the Earth element and ruled by Saturn, some sources say Venus as well. Magical keywords for it are: healing, beauty, protection, psychic powers, spiritual strength and beauty. 

Before my first night with Yerba Santa I had come to a realization that nothing I used to clear myself with was really working, I still felt so heavy and didn’t know why. Immediately during my first cleansing ceremony with Yerba Santa, that heavy feeling was lifted and I felt deeply nourished by the healing smoke.

Yerba Santa is known for its ability to bring awareness to the body (especially emotional pain & sadness stored in the heart and the lungs), then helping us release heavy energies which allows our spirit and energy to flow freely again. Yerba Santa is a great plant ally for anyone in the process of grief, depression, melancholy and heartache. The act of forming a relationship with this plant has helped me deeply. It helped me become aware that grief was the heaviness I felt. I was trying to detach myself emotionally to the extent that it was building in my body. My Aquarius moon was convincing my mind that I was “okay” but not my body, and my heart and lungs were bearing the weight. 

Due to its ability to both clear and protect, this very powerful herb is a must have in every person's magic toolkit. Two simple ways to work with it are: to carry the leaves in a pouch and to burn it in an incense blend. If you want a powerful ready made mix you could try our Santisima Muerte incense Blend. This protection powerhouse is filled with many powerful friends including Yerba Santa. 

 

More ways to work with Yerba Santa: 

  • Burn  in a sick room to purify and dispel hostile spirits that may be involved in the sickness 
  • Yerba Santa mixed with spearmint and cascara sagrada make a purifying potpourri 
  • For a purification bath add Yerba Santa to your bath water
  • Add Yerba Santa to a pouch to create a charm bag for any of these areas: protection, beauty, empowerment and healing 
  • Yerba Santa is a great smudging herb for healing rituals and after times of deep emotional upset 
  • Burn during times of meditation and deep spiritual cleansing 

 

For me, Yerba Santa is a High Priestess of a plant with so much to offer us. Let your intuition guide you to the way you feel called to work with it, whether that's burning the leaves of a bundle, placing it in your bath, or burning the incense. 

 

Until next time, 

Anais 

Instagram: @mysticalmandrakeroot

 

mystickal mandrake

About the Author

Anais is a Cosmic Astrologer, Root Priestess, Healer and Intuitive Guide. She is the sole founder of Mystical Mandrake Root and works mostly out of New York City. A New Orleans Creole by blood she may live in New York however, New Orleans will always have her heart! Anais offers many services for healing, creative inspiration and self-empowerment. Join her here every Tuesday as she talks about magickal herbalism and self care. 

Instagram: @mysticalmandrakeroot