Saturday, April 13, 2013

Samedi: Herbal-Wise

The herb known as Grains of Paradise is extremely versatile. Used in hoodoo, Voudon, and Wicca for everything from getting a job to protecting one's home, Grains of Paradise are also known as African or Guinea pepper grains.

Scott Cunningham says that Grains of Paradise can be used for the simplest kind of magick: wishing. Take a handful of the herb and hold it in both hands while you make a wish. Visualize your wish coming true; take your time here and really see the thing/change you desire. When you are certain your wish has been firmly grounded in future reality, send it off to the Universe by throwing a little bit of the herb to the four directions, starting in the North and ending in the West. This type of magick is a wonderful way to grow your powers of visualization. Start with something small and work your way up to more serious wishing.

In hoodoo, Grains of Paradise are mixed with frankincense and myrrh to encourage spiritual pursuits and protect a root worker during conjuration. The mixture is burned on charcoal and some workers add rue as well. It is said that this mixture added to Crown of Success Oil can make a powerful dressing for mojos intended to help one rise to the height of their profession and/or to draw fame. I would caution, however, that one be careful what one wishes for here.

For piece of mind and spiritual health, one Grain of Paradise should be disolved into a cup of hot water (tea or coffee will work just as well) and drunk daily. This mixture is also said to elevate the mood and make one capable of facing whatever life may bring.

In the early 20th century, Grains of Paradise were recommended for job-seekers. One was instructed to put nine of the grains in each shoe and then to hold another nine grains in the mouth while asking for a job. The grains were then spit onto the ground outside the employer's property as one left. This may not be the best way to approach this working today; try carrying the extra nine grains in a mojo bag and then - perhaps wrapped in a tissue - deposit this into a waste basket on the employer's premises.

New Orleans voodoo root workers would make a pair of protection packets filled with Grains of Paradise. Generally made of red or yellow flannel, a prayer card of Saint Michael was then sewn onto the outside of each mojo. These were secreted near the front and back doors of a house to keep both the structure and the inhabitants safe from all manner of ills. Bonne chance ~

Header: Harrods catalog cover - once a wish book to end all wish books - from the early 20th century via A Harlot's Progress


Timmy! said...

I guess I need to get me some Grains of Paradise, Pauline...

Pauline said...

Yes; I don't have any in my magickal pantry and doing this post reminded me to get some. I'm on it :)