CHARMS AND AMULETS
Charms and amulets play an important role in any faith, culture or religion. Charms gave those who believed in them the faith to carry on through hard and trying times. They brought about fertility and blessings as well as protection from fire, lightning and to some who believed enough, protection from Witches and Witchcraft. Yes over history there has been all manner of charms and talismans made to keep Witches at bay, to make them dissolve and to keep one from becoming bewitched by their enchanting powers.
During the Witch burning times it is said that millions were burnt, hung or drowned and where the female population declined dramatically. Sachets of powdered herbs were carried by any ‘decent folk’ who needed protection from Witches and their furry little familiars. Funnily enough some of these charms carried by these so called ‘decent folk’ contained crushed bones from murderers’ corpses, blood and dried human organs. Now let me know if I am wrong here, but does that not sound worse than what we did with our herbs and whilst trying to help others and no doubt protect ourselves from them?
On a lighter note however, sachets or pouches were also used as lucky charms, to help one with a thirst for knowledge, an easy childbirth or to become pregnant, to remove negativity and as a general cleanser and promoter of good energy. Sachets were and still are a handy way of holding various herbs together and being able to conceal them in your clothes or inside the home, work of office, unless of course you have Valerian root which gives a very unusual scent to say the least. May create a few stares at the workplace if you have just made a sachet that includes that little gem. Even today many charms are still used in everyday life for family as well as their animals. Following are some you may like to try yourself. Always work with a positive intent and follow the Witches Rede, ‘An it harm none, do what ye will.’
APPLE CHARM FOR THE HOME
You will need one fresh apple, any style, 3 long pins or nails, make sure they are new. Iron nails are good for this if you can get them or standard horseshoe nails and a piece of black cloth and thread. Cut the apple through the middle to reveal the star inside. Inscribe a picture of the house into the inner apple flesh, just a basic symbolic drawing so it looks like a house. Close the apple and secure with the pins or nails, wrap well in the black cloth and secure with thread. Chant this ditty while you work. Bury the charm outside in the ground and closet to the main threshold.
‘Apple, Apple my magickal charm, keep all safe and away from harm.’
I have included a courage sachet as sometimes we need a little extra in our lives especially when we have to do something that we are a little unsure about such as a new job, meeting someone, going somewhere where we would rather not but have to.
Add to a pouch of red or green material and in equal amounts the following three herbs, calendula, borage and ginger. Secure the sachet with a red thread and carry this little pouch with you for courage when needed and strength to get a task done. When you feel it has done its task, throw the sachet into the bale-fire. Give thanks.
‘Borage, calendula and ginger of three, protection powers I ask of thee,
bring me courage and strength as well, and keep me safe with this magick spell.’
Sunday is under rule of the lion so strength and courage magick is good to be done on these days and even more so during the first hour of sunlight. If that cannot be done then midday until mid-afternoon are also good times for this.
Make a herbal sachet that contains herbs such as allspice, basil, chili, dragons blood, ginger, mustard, nettles, pennyroyal, pepper, snap dragon, thistle and wormwood to name but a few. Use equal parts of the chosen herb, be it a teaspoon, tablespoons or sprinkling’s worth, however you may find that more of one herb may be preferred than another, go with your intuition. Wrap the herbs in a cloth of natural fabric and tie with a red ribbon. Hang the sachet over the main threshold to protect those within the home.
‘My home, my castle I ask of you, to watch over us in all we do.
May the threshold close and send those away, who are not called in, come night or day. Blessed be…’
OAK STRENGTH SACHET
An amulet of oak is carried to give strength to the person in need. Pop an acorn into a small sachet or bundle and carry in your pocket or bag. From time to time take the acorn out of the sachet and gently blow on it, once to remove residue build up and the second time to instill your warmth of your breath. This is done to increase its connection to you and your energies.
Note, make sure it is strength you are after and be clear about this intention as acorns were and still are carried to increase fertility!
SUMMER SACHET OF LIFE
This mix can be used in incense, sachets, or sewn into poppets. It can also be used as a sprinkle to add to the balefire during this season. Choose dried herbs such as Oak - strength, St John’s Wort-health, Pohutukawa-connection with nature & lifeforce, Vervain-peace, Frankincense-protection, Sandalwood - spiritualism, Bay-victory, Saffron-riches, Sunflowers-happiness, Marigolds-longevity, Calendula-healing, Nettle-cleansing, Lavender-happiness, Yarrow-visions, Sage-wisdom, Lemon-luna magick, the Goddess, all Mints-cleansing, Oranges-solar magick, the God, Summer Savory-mental powers, Ferns-faeries magick, Elderflowers-prosperity, Bottlebrush-gentleness, Ginger-success. Add your favourite herbs, spices and plants that reflect your life.
Blend together the chosen herbs in a large non-metallic bowl. Empower the herbs as you blend them. Visualize their energies of strength, protection and healing whilst asking that they help in your rituals and work during summer. When you feel that they are ready, place into an airtight, clean glass jar and label. Trace a pentagram on the top of the lid and simply say:
‘Summer herbs, I ask of thee, please help in my life, to live to my fullest, so mote it be.’