Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Mardi: Herbal-Wise

As a magickal practice, hoodoo has a long history of offering root work and mojos that will either keep the law away from the client, or help them when they have a run in with the authorities.  This makes perfect sense given the roots of hoodoo.  Most practitioners came from the ranks of the poor, who probably had more frequent encounters – for good or ill – with law enforcement and the court system.  This does not mean that wealthier people refused to seek out such help when it was needed; more than one land or business owner in a bind has surely asked a local root doctor to help him with a law confusion or court case mojo.

Today’s herb is used for such workings.  Celandine, a leafy and poisonous plant with milky sap and poppy-like pods is used in work to keep away evil, most particularly the evils of the law.  The tiny seeds have been scattered around houses to ward of the evil eye and keep away ghostly haints and witches, but this method is said to keep the police away as well.  This was a treatment favored by illicit brothels and speak easies alike.

An old candle burning ritual to keep people from testifying against one required that poppy seeds, celandine and calendula flowers be steeped in oil for nine days.  This mixture was then strained and the oil was used to anoint a black candle into which the names of those set to testify have been carved.  The candle is lit and allowed to burn itself out while the root worker or her client – or both – concentrate on a successful outcome in or out of court.

Scott Cunningham mentions similar uses for celandine in Wicca.  The leaves should be worn next to the skin, and replaced with new ones every three days, to avoid capture by the law or other possible snares.  The same application may win favor from judge and jury in a court case.  He also says that celandine is worn to uplift the spirit and fight depression.  Bonne chance ~

Header: The Trial of Jeanne d’Arc by Louis Boutet de Monvel c 1911


Timmy! said...

There's never a cop around when you need one, Pauline...

And I doubt that even celandine would have saved Jeanne d’Arc in that Kangaroo court.

Pauline said...

Only when you don't; thus the celandine.

And you're absolutely right. What is a 19 year old girl going to do against the most powerful institution of her era? I just like to include St. Jeanne whenever I can :)