On Medicine Herbs
I personally chose not to write much about spirituality and magic on Hub-pages but I decided to make an exception regarding the topic of medicine herbs. I do think they help me and perhaps they can help others as well.
Regarding herbs used for magic or healing, I use whatever herb is necessary for whatever task I need to focus on. The main medicine herbs I use, are the four medicine herbs used by most of the Native American tribes in North America (tobacco, cedar, sage & sweet grass) and wormwood.
One of the medicine pouches which hangs around my neck now (and always) contains a mixture of sage (Buffalo Sage) and wormwood (Artemisia Absinthium). These are two of the most powerful medicine herbs which can always be used for cleansing, in my opinion. There are others as well.
Wormwood does not grow in Canada and most of the time when people find-out that I use it (for many things), they look at me strangely. I indeed keep it to myself for the most part. My Dacian ancestors have used it for thousands of years. I never hand-it-out as I do with cedar for example, as a sign of kindness or for helping wishes manifest. Wormwood is a powerful plant which depending on how it is used may have different results. It is not an extremely forgiving plant either and I would rather encourage people to let it be, unless they really feel that they can build a good friendship with it.
The other four Native American medicine herbs can be easily found. I do suggest people should know where the medicine herbs they use come from; this in the case in which they are not harvesting them themselves.
When collecting medicine herbs there are some important factors to take in consideration: one cannot just walk-up to a sage plant, take out a rusty knife and cut it down in order to use it for cleansing. Well, it can be done but that would be a terribly ignorant way of going about it.
First of all, a small part of the plant should be taken from each plant. Taking/killing a whole plant is not something advisable. Talking to it is important; asking it for permission to take part of it away and telling it the reason why you are doing so. At the end, please do leave an offering. Plants are alive just like you and I. Disregarding that, would be a mistake in my opinion.
Also, the use of a metal knife when farming herbs for healing and/or magic should be prohibited. Using a silver or copper knife or perhaps just bare hands is a much better way. Or a bone knife could work just as well.
Something else which is important in the harvesting of herbs is the time when it is done. For example, depending on what the herb will be used for, it may need to be collected during a full moon, or a waxing moon, etc. I cannot be specific here because for each different use, the time may differ. And it is good to keep in mind that each herb has a different level of potency, depending on how young or mature it is.
Medicine herbs can be used in many ways: through burning them as in a smudging, or they can be made into oils, bath-infusions, teas, etc. Please do know your medicine herbs well before you begin using them. If you are able to create a strong relationship with them (and with all herbs in general), they prove to be of great help. Or at least, I think so.
Please respect our fellow friends: the plants, herbs and trees which we need so much and which help us tremendously, even though at times we may not realize it.