Capricorn: The Astroherbology Profile

It's time to get things done.

It's time to explore the sign of Capricorn! You're getting a snapshot into the ever expanding astroherbology magick of the Lunar Apothecary - amazing! 

I will be exploring all twelve signs from a medical astrology perspective with an emphasis on herbal healing. To learn more about the series and what all the correspondences mean check out the introduction to The Introduction to Astroherbology Series. Looking for the other signs of the Zodiac? Find out about the astroherbology wisdom of AriesTaurusGeminiCancerLeoVirgoLibraScorpioSagittariusCapricornAquariusPisces.

AstroherbologyCapricornTitle.png

Element: Earth
Mode: Cardinal
Guardian Planet: Saturn
Direction: North
Season: Winter
House: 10th House / Angular
Lunar Mansions: 22nd Mansion, 23rd Mansion + 24th Mansion
Solar Gemstone: Lapis Lazuli
Tarot: The Devil, the World, 2 of Pentacles (12/22 - 12/30), 3 of Pentacles (12/31 - 1/9), 4 of Pentacles (1/10 - 1/19), Queen of Pentacles
Tissue State: Cold/Depression Tissue State

Body Systems: Skin, hair, and knees. Teeth. Joints, especially the knees. Bones and the skeletal system. Anterior pituitary gland. Gall bladder. Processing and maintaining energy reserves. Regulation of body systems, especially through the hormonal system. Antiperistaltic movement.

Imbalances + Diseases: Excess of cold, constriction, and lack of moisture. Slow metabolism and slow-acting wasting diseases. Skin complaints. Joint pain and damage, as well as knee injuries such as strains and fractures. Bone disorders including broken, fractured, and brittle bones. Tooth and dental disease. Chronic tissue infection. Poor digestion stemming from lack of digestive fire. Lack of absorption of calcium. Colic, fussy, and low-vitality babies (that grow into vitality with age). Imbalances of hormones secreted by the anterior pituitary gland including growth hormone, thyroid stimulating hormone, adrenocorticotrophic hormone, gonadotropic hormones, luteinising hormone, prolactin, and melanin stimulating hormone. Pituitary tumors. Deafness. Parkinson’s disease. Diseases arising from tension and lack of moisture in the body. Rheumatism and arthritis. Gangrene and gout. Scabies and lice. Impetigo. Conjunctivitis. Parasitic diseases. Depression and melancholy. Feeling unsupported. Very body-conscious, manifesting as vanity, insecurity, self-doubt, and preoccupation with being “right” in dress and appearance. Being rigid, restrictive, and controlling. Cynicism. Too much emphasis on “correctness,” including in appearance, and adhering to tradition. Lacking imagination and prone to pessimism and arrogance.

Disease Degrees: 1 degree: right patella; 2 degrees: left patella; 3 degrees: cutaneous nerves of thigh, eyesight; 4 degrees: cutaneous nerves of lower leg; 5 degrees: cutaneous nerves of knee; 6 degrees: right adductor muscle; 7 degrees: left adductor muscle; 8 degrees: lymph vessels, knee, paralysis; 9 degrees: nerves of knee; 10 degrees: right cruciate ligaments; 11 degrees: left cruciate ligaments; 12 degrees: right knee joint; 13 degrees: left knee joint; 14 degrees: right knee cartilage; 15 degrees: left knee cartilage; 16 degrees: condyle of right tibia; 17 degrees: condyle of left tibia; 18 degrees: ligaments of right knee; 19 degrees: ligaments of left knee; 20 degrees: tendons of right knee; 21 degrees: tendons of left knee; 22 degrees: muscle insertions of upper to lower legs; 23 degrees: muscle insertions of upper to lower legs; 24 degrees: muscle insertions of upper to lower legs; 25 degrees: connections between femur and tibia; 26 degrees: connections between femur and tibia, azimene; 27 degrees: deep nerves, azimene; 28 degrees: right genicular arteries, azimene; 29 degrees: left genicular arteries, azimene; 30 degrees: adductor muscle.

Remedies for Imbalanced and/or Weakened Capricorn: Digestive tonics, such as bitters, liver and gall bladder tonics and cleansers, as well as herbs that are nutritive, warming, and oily in nature. Learning to manage your own world, not everyone else’s experience. Recognizing the merit of other’s ideas. Understanding the difference between asking for accountability and enforcing conformity. Laugh!

Gifts of Capricorn: Self-preservation, self-determination, self-control, traditional, hard-working, grounded, compassion, trust, accountability, systematic ways of thinking, dependability, patience, humor, social justice awakenings.

Rituals of Capricorn: Healing rites – especially for long-term and chronic illnesses, web-weaving rituals for support, community, and security, rituals for careers, long-term goals and ambitions, medicine-blessing rituals, home blessings, and grounding rites of self-determination and social justice.

Capricorn Guardian Herbs: Mullein (Thapsus verbascum), Comfrey (Symphytum officinale), Wintergreen (Gaultheria procumbens), Goatweed (Epimedium spp.), Horsetail (Equisetum arvense), Amla (Emblica officinalis), Boneset (Eupatorium perfoliatum), Plantain (Plantago major), Blessed Thistle (Cnicus bendictus), Yarrow (Achillea millefolium), Lemon Balm (Melissa officinalis).

Capricorn Remedy Herbs: Thyme (Thymus vulgaris), Cayenne (Capsicum annuum), Amla (Emblica officinalis), Goat’s Rue (Galega officinalis), Shepherd’s Purse (Capsella bursa-pastoris), Ginger (Zingiber officinalis), Solomon Seal (Polygonatum multiflorum), Oats (Avena sativa), Licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra), Lemon Balm (Melissa officinalis).

Flower + Gem Essences: Rock Water, Sunflower (Helianthus annuus), Larch (Larix decidua), Birch (Betula alba), Elm (Ulmus procera), Garnet, Agate, Turquoise.

The Sun in Capricorn

The mighty goatfish is one of the hardest working signs of the zodiac. They are known for their self-determination, authoritative expression, and self-control. A core value of many Capricorn folk is responsibility - their sense of self is often shaped by what they perceive their responsibilities (especially to others) to be. They appreciate the usefulness of tradition and then sometimes get lost in preserving tradition for tradition’s sake instead of evolving customs to meet changing needs. Sometimes their sense of responsibility and frustration that the world is not ordered in the “right” way can lead to a deep sense of pessimism and depression. They can easily become stagnant and unmoving in their cynicism. Capricorns can get so caught up in what is “acceptable” that they forget their own needs and desires. Yet, while Capricorn is so often described as a very serious sign they have a surprising trickster element becoming the old wise one with the strange and illuminating jokes once they learn to ease up on their self-imposed constraints.

Within astroherbology, Capricorn is the sign of regulation, reflecting the power of their Guardian Planet, Saturn. The sign guards the pituitary gland which secretes important regulatory hormones throughout the body. When Capricorn gets into trouble is when they attempt to live an over-regulated life, seeking to exert control over every aspect of living, often leading to restriction of movement and stagnation. A common trait I see with a lot of Capricorn folk that leads to a number of health imbalances is unexpressed anger which then builds up in the liver and gall bladder. Problems with the liver leads to problems with the digestion and Capricorn folk, who tend to run cold and dry, can often have a weakened digestive system to begin with. Painful gall stones, too, can build up. They are a sign known for a build-up of tension, so learning a variety of self-relaxation techniques is key to longevity. It is also very important for Capricorn folk to pay attention to the foods they eat, discovering and addressing any food allergies they may have, and being mindful of restricting calories unnecessarily (which can start as an attempt to alleviate an underperforming digestive system that feels unable to digest food properly). Food allergies and other imbalances often make themselves known through skin irritations such as eczema and other rashes. Another aspect of Capricorns is that they are often more sick earlier in life and grow in strength as they age (remember the old wise one with the illuminating jokes I mentioned?).

Capricorn folk need their space to make plans, find inspiration, and cultivate peace in quiet. They are not the most collaborative of signs, preferring more hierarchical structures to collectives, but having clear definitions of roles in any of their relationships helps them to lighten up and work better in groups. Remember, even if Capricorn folks may sometimes come off as strict and judgmental, they are often far more restricting and judging of themselves on a level that most of us will never (thankfully) attain. Be kind to your grumpy neighborhood goatfish because their magick is so very worth it. When they are dwelling confidently in their wisdom, Capricorn folks bring the gift of unexpected homecomings. They can open up ways of feeling at home that lost souls never thought possible again. Capricorn folks can be sturdy powerhouses of social change once they learn that taking care of and cultivating self-worth within themselves first will allow them to better help others to do the same.

Capricorn Guardian Herbs

Mullein via wikipedia

Mullein via wikipedia

Mullein (Verbascum thapsus)

Mullein is described by Nicholas Culpeper as being under the guardianship of Saturn, which is in part why the herb is considered a Guardian of Capricorn. The herb is a great ally during the winter months, helping to clear phlegm from the system, reduce inflammation, and protect against infection. It is excellent for clearing out chronic, long-standing coughs, especially dry and spasmodic coughs, and can help with a number of respiratory complaints including bronchitis, asthma, and general lung weakness. Add the herb to your cold and flu blends with Elder (Sambucus nigra) and Peppermint (Mentha piperita) for a lung-opening, immunomodulating blend. Mullein is useful, too, for Capricorn folk who tend towards stagnant cold states which lead to swellings and cysts as the herb helps to dissolve such manifestations of buildup. In her Physica, Hildegard von Bingen recommended Mullein for “one who is hoarse or has a pain in his chest” recommending that they combine the herb with Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare) in a medicinal wine.

Topically, the mucilaginous Mullein is excellent for dry skin conditions but also as a healing compress for boils, bruises, inflammation, hemorrhoids, and joint pain. Mullein and garlic ear oil is a trusted remedy for ear infections helping to relieve pain and infection. I always keep a small bottle of Mullein and Garlic oil in my home care kit just for this reason. The long thick stems are sometimes referred to as Hag’s Tapers (the dried stalks dipped in wax will burn as a somewhat messy candle) as they are associated with the magickal workings of Witchfolk. You can also tuck the leaves into your shoe for added comfort and protection on your journeys.

Capricorn Remedy Herbs

Cayenne via wikipedia

Cayenne via wikipedia

Cayenne (Capsicum annuum)

Cayenne is a traditional remedy for states of excess cold and moistness. The hot and drying herb is an excellent remedy for a stomach weakened by cold - a common ailment of out-of-balance Capricorn folk. American herbalist and founder of the Thompsonian system of medicine, Samuel Thompson, used Cayenne as a primary remedy in his practice as it was so effective at clearing out a congested gut and stimulating the digestive fire. Cayenne helps to relieve pain by stimulating the release of endorphins in the brain to whatever area it is applied to. The herb is a great ally in times of colds and ‘flus, clearing congestion, relieving aches and pain, and warming cold body systems. Mix together 1 quart of water with half a lemon, a 1/2 teaspoon of Cayenne powder, some maple syrup to taste, for an effective and hydrating cold remedy brew (I used this on more than one occasion during my college years when ingredients for my remedies consisted of what I could find in the dining hall). The herb stimulates circulation and warms the blood, which can be great during the winter, in helping to recover from a period of illness, dissipating pain caused from the cold and stagnation, as well as stimulate the libido.  

Topically, it is used in compresses and oils for arthritis, sprains, strains, bruises, inflammation, and to warm under-stimulated parts of the body. Use in a foot bath for colds and the ‘flu or in a gargle for sore throats. The herb also stops bleeding quickly. A little Cayenne goes a long way internally or externally to be effective - too much can invite an irritating bite. 

Sun in Capricorn Flower Essence

Elm (Ulmus procera) Flower Essence is for Capricorn folk who have been going, going, going, and now they can’t go anymore. They have been so focused on getting it done that they have taxed their limits, often ignoring their own basic needs (like eating enough food and getting enough sleep) because of their overwhelming sense of responsibility. Elm helps Capricorn folk to realize that they are responsible to their needs, too, and it is not responsible to work themselves to the point of a nervous and physical breakdown. The essence helps Capricorn folk to slow-down and restore the spirit, learning how shift their sense of self-worth from being based solely on their ability to complete their perceived responsibilities, to understanding that they don’t have to prove themselves worthy - they already are and always will be.

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