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Monthly Archives: May 2009

Angostura (True)

Botanical: Cusparia febrifuga (D. C.)
Family: N.O. Rutaceae
—Synonyms—Cusparia Bark. Galipea officinalis.
—Part Used—The dried bark.
—Habitat—Tropical South America.

—Description—A small tree with straight stem irregularly branched, covered with a smooth grey bark, leaves alternate, petiolate and composed of three leaflets oblong and pointed, smooth, glossy and vivid green, sometimes with small white spots on them and in their first state having a tobacco-like aroma, this odour is one of the characteristics distinguishing the true Angostura from the false which is odourless. The flowers also have a peculiar nauseous smell; salver-shaped corollas and arranged in axillary, terminal, peduncled racemes. Fruit has five two-valved capsules, two or three of which are often abortive; two seeds in each capsule, round and black, one only is generally fertile. The tree was given the name of Galipea officinalis to denote the true variety of Angostura and thus distinguish it from the very dangerous substitute and adulterant. The characteristics of the true commercial bark are flattened curved pieces or quills 4 to 5 inches long, 1 inch wide and 1/12 of an inch thick. The outer layer of bark is a yellowishgrey cork which is easily removed, often being soft, the inner surface is lighter brown and sometimes laminated, fracture short and resinous white, points being visible on broken surface; the transverse section shows numerous cells filled with circular crystals of Calcium Oxalate, small oil glands, small groups of bast fibres with a musty smell and bitte taste.
—Constituents—The chief bitter principle of Angostura bark is Angosturin, a colourless crystalline substance readily soluble in water alcohol or ether. The bark also contains about 2.4 per cent of the bitter crystalline alkaloids Galipine, Cusparine, Galipidine Cusparidine and Cuspareine, about 1.5 per cent. of volatile oil and a glucoside which yields a fluorescent substance when hydrolysed by heating with dilute sulphuric acid.

—Medicinal Action and Uses—The bark has long been known and used by the natives of South America and West Indies as a stimulant tonic. In large doses it causes diarrhoea and is often used as a purgative. Most useful in bilious diarrhoea, dysentery, and diseases which require a tonic. Commercially it is an ingredient of bitter liqueurs. The natives also employ it to stupefy fish in the same manner as Cinchona is used by the Peruvians. Some doctors prefer Angostura Bark to Cinchona for use in fever cases; it is also used in dropsy.

—Dosages and Preparations—Infusion Cuspariae, B.P.: Angostura Bark in powder,5 parts; distilled water, boiling, 100 parts; infuse for 15 minutes in a covered vessel and strain. Dose, 1 to 2 fluid ounces. This infusion is the most satisfactory way of taking the bark, but to obviate nausea it should be combined with aromatics. It may be given in powder, tincture or fluid extract. Dose of the powder, 5 to 15 grains. Fluid extract, 5 to 30 minims.

—Other Species—Dangerous substitutions are: The bark of the Nux Vomica Tree; this is known as False Angostura Bark; it is much more twisted and bent than the true, has no unpleasant smell, is not so heavy, and is more easily broken.

Copalchi Bark from Mexico, composition similar to Cascarilla Esenbeckia febrifuga (N.O. Rutaceae), contains Ovodine.


Themes: Moon, communication, cycles & mediation.
Symbols: Lunar ( silver/white items or any corresponding plants/stones
) & coconut.

About Hina: This Tahitian Goddess is the Lady in the Moon who shines on
us with her changing faces. As the dark Moon, she presides over
death. As the waxing Moon, she is the creatrix who made people from
clay and the Moon, her home. As the full Moon, she embodies a mature
woman’s warrior spirit. As the waning Moon, she is the aging crone
full of wisdom and insight.

According to tradition, coconuts were created from the body of Hina’s
lover, an eel god, after he was killed by superstitious locals. She
also governs matters of honest communication and when properly
propitiated, Hina sometimes acts as an intermediary between humans and
the Gods.

To Do Today: On July 20th in 1969, American astronauts visited Hina in
person, landing on the Moon’s surface and exploring it. In spiritual
terms this means taking time to explore the magickal nature of the Moon
today. If the Moon is dark, it represents the need to rest from your
labors. If it is waxing, start a new magick project and stick with it
so the energy grows like the Moon. If Hina’s lunar sphere is full,
turn a coin in your pocket three times, saying “prosperity” each time so
your pocket remains full. If the Moon is waning, start taking positive
action to rid yourself of a nagging problem. Eat some coconut to help
this along by internalizing Hina’s transformative powers.

from 365 Goddess – A Daily Guide of the Magick and Inspiration of the
by Patricia Telesco

Goddess Meditation

What the Fates foretell will come about.
The very order of the universe obeys
their commands and so we pray to them:
Goddesses, may you add good destinies
to all you have in store for us.
May our fields be fertile, our herds vast,
and may your sister Ceres wear
great garlands of wheat this harvest time.
~ Horace, Hymn for the Centennial

The Fates: they were three spinning sisters, the Greeks and Romans said,
who created the thread of life, one who measured out its length and one
who cut it. Our fate was not entirely in our hands, for their powers
were beyond us. Our forebears did not believe that individuals could
control their own destiny; they would not comprehend our superstition
that the time of our death is determined by the amount of exercise we
engage in or the number of antioxidants we consume ( or do not consume
). No, they were aware that only some aspects of life are under our
control. And the hour and year of our death is not one of those.
Living with awareness that we do not choose nor control every aspect of
our lives is not, however, a morbid or depressing attitude. Rather, it
frees us to concentrate on what we can, in fact, control. We can
decide where and how to give our affections; we can determine what
activities are worthy of our time; we can decide what values to make
our priorities. If we cannot control the time of our life’s ending, we
can certainly control how its precious moments are spent.

from The Goddess Companion – Daily Meditations on the Feminine Spirit
by Patricia Monaghan

Hatching Meditation

Adapted from Witch in the Kitchen, by Cait Johnson (Inner
Traditions, 2001).

This simple meditation is beautifully appropriate for the emerging
Spring season. It encourages us to expand a little, stretching
beyond our current limits–a good first step for becoming more
deeply who we are, and attaining our heart’s desire.

Find a time when you can be alone and undisturbed. Sit comfortably
with your eyes closed. Listen to the sounds around you; become
gently aware of the small noises that make up your world at this
moment. Now bring your attention to the sound of your own breathing,
the rhythm it makes as it enters and leaves your body. Together,
these are the sounds your world makes.

Next, imagine that you are sitting inside a large egg. Imagine the
smooth, curving wall, the gentle darkness, the way the egg fits you
perfectly, enclosing you in a small universe. It is quiet and safe–
the only world you have every known, the only one you’ve ever seen.
But you are growing. The eggshell is gradually becoming cramped and
close. You become aware of an urgent desire to stretch, to expand.
The walls are hard and thick. But you are impelled–through some
mysterious force of soul–to push…to push hard. You need space to
grow. The wall cracks. You push harder still. Perhaps you kick or
hit the wall with your fists. Soon the wall begins to break open and
you push your way out. The shell is sharp and scratchy; it can hurt
to break out of the egg. But you struggle–and suddenly there is a
vast, enormous vista before you, a world you never dreamed of, a
spaciousness you never imagined possible. Look around at this huge
expanse. There is unlimited room and potential for growth. Stretch
yourself as fully as you can. Really allow yourself to feel the
exultation of breaking free into something larger than the familiar.
Take a deep breath and open your eyes.

“There are two ways of spreading light: to be the candle or the mirror
that reflects it.”
–Edith Wharton

PMS Oil Blend Recipe

For use when cramping during PMS
10 drops geranium
15 drops lavender
5 drops German chamomile
3 drops cypress
4 oz almond oil
Mix well and store in a bottle or jar. Apply to abdomen as needed.

Fettuccine with Creamy Basil-Pine Nut Sauce

1 garlic clove  
1 cup fresh basil leaves  
1/2 cup light ricotta cheese  
1/2 cup plain nonfat yogurt  
1/2 cup (2 ounces) crumbled blue cheese  
2 teaspoons sherry vinegar  
1/4 teaspoon pepper  
2 tablespoon pine nuts  
1 (9-ounce) package fresh fettuccine  
Fresh basil leaves (optional)  

Place the garlic in a food processor, and pulse 2 to 3  
times. Add basil and the next 5 ingredients (through the pepper);  
process until smooth. Stir in pine nuts. Cook pasta according to  
package directions, omitting salt and fat; drain. Combine pasta  
and sauce in a large bowl; toss well. Garnish with fresh basil,  
if desired.  

YIELD: Yield: 3  Servings  
CAL 493 (26% from fat),FAT 14g (sat 5.4g, mono 4.2g,  
poly 3.2g) PROT 22.6g,CARB 71.2g,FIBER 2.5g,CHOL 20mg,  
IRON 3.7mg, SODIUM 346mg,CALCIUM 261mgCategory:  

Category: Pasta

Foaming Vanilla Honey Bath

1 cup oil
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup liquid soap
1 tablespoon vanilla extract ( pure is better )
Mix together all the ingredients and pour into a clean bottle with a
tight fitting stopper or lid.
to use: Shake before using. Pour 1/4 cup into the bath under running
Yield: 16 ounces, enough for 8 baths

Fragrant Dragon’s Blood Ink

Fragrant Dragon’s Blood Ink
Susan Profit


Materials Needed:

a.. Dragon’s Blood resin (powdered if possible)
b.. colorless alcohol
c.. tightly sealable jar
d.. one cinnamon stick (chipped)
or 15 cloves
or one vanilla bean (chipped)
or 9 coffee beans (crushed).
Pour the resin and spices into the jar. Pour in just enough
wine/vodka/???? to cover the resin/spices mixture plus 10% more. Seal
the jar. The resin will leach it’s color into the alcohol, faster if
it is a powder than if it is resin chunks. The spices will leach their
scent into the ink at the same time.

When you think it is dark enough, dip a sterile toothpick into the
liquid, and test on the paper you intend to use it with. Let dry: is
it indeed dark enough, or does it need more steeping? Continue
steeping and testing.

When it is done, strain to remove the resin and spices. Return the
liquid to the bottle, use for writing. Be advised that this is not a
sun-fast ink, so it should not be used for things that will spend a
great deal of time in the direct sunlight.

Book Blessing

Here is a blessing that you can say over your Book of Shadows that I
 used in mine. Of course, as any good blessing or spell that works,
 you can customize or say words the way you wish to:
 “In the realm of magick this book shall reside
 No one but the chosen shall see what’s inside.
 If breath be to Air as passion to Fire,
 Let harm come to none, this is my desire.
 If life be to Earth as Water to emotions,
 This book be filled with magical potions.
 May the God’s protect it, keep it from harm,
 And upon it bestow power, magick, and charm.
 No one without wisdom shall peer at its pages,
 Or the knowledge inside handed down from the ages.
 This book be it mine, it harbors no fears.
 The knowledge obtained through blood, sweat, and tears.
 My magick’s my passion, the spirit’s my guide.
 The love for the Goddess I hold deep inside.
 The book may she bless it with spiritual light.
 And let only her children read of its rite.
 For those of the Wicca truly can see,
 That this is my will, so mote it be.”
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