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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.

Want to dive into the world of astroherbology?

Get access to the Capricorn Tamer and Capricorn Power! blends, Capricorn inspired rituals and charms, as well as a full astroherbology profile on Capricorn's Guardian Planets of Saturn plus a whole lot more! 

You're invited to join the Lunar Apothecary!

Ready to learn more?

 

Taurus: The Astroherbology Profile

Let's talk Bull.

It's time to explore the sign of Taurus! I will be exploring all twelve signs from a medical astrology perspective with an emphasis on herbal healing. Learn more about the series and what all the correspondences mean check out the introduction to The Introduction to Astroherbology Zodiac SeriesMissed the first sign of the Zodiac? Find out about the astroherbology wisdom of Aries!

Element: Earth
Mode: Fixed
Guardian Planet: Venus
Direction: East (traditional), North (TWH energetics)
Season: Spring (traditional), Winter (TWH energetics)
House: 2nd House / Succedent
Lunar Mansions: 3rd Mansion, 4th Mansion, + 5th Mansion (Learn more about the Lunar Mansions!)
Solar Gemstone: Amber
Tarot: The Hierophant, the Empress, 5 of Pentacles (4/12 - 4/30), 6 of Pentacles (5/1 - 5/10), 7 of Pentacles (5/11 - 5/20), Knight of Pentacles
Tissue State: Cold/Depression

Body Systems: Throat, neck, vocal cords, thyroid, voice, and middle ear. Metabolic system, medulla oblongata, and hearing. Salivary glands, taste buds, and teeth of the lower jaw. Jugular veins, cervical nerves of the blood vessels, and bladder. Procreative desire.  Base of the skull. Find out more about the astrological correspondences to our bodies.

Imbalances + Diseases: Including sore throats, tonsillitis, thyroid conditions (especially hypothyroid), and overindulgence. The formation of tumors. Slow digestion, excess weight, and weak metabolism. Deafness and ear infections. Excess mucus in the upper respiratory system. Apoplexy, loss of coordination between organ systems, erratic movements, and paralysis. Glandular swelling, goiter, gout, bad blood. Loss of voice and vocal cord conditions. Sore throat, bronchial complaints, dry cough, tonsillitis, ulcerated throat, and diseases or injuries to the larynx and vocal cords. Accumulation of toxins especially in the intestinal tract and congested colon. Overly cold and dried out. Tend towards more persistent and chronic conditions - through their stubbornness they can tend to hold onto disease. Resisting change, ungrounded stubbornness, avoiding conflict, hurtful, brutish, brooding, lack of reflection on their emotions, and melancholic. 

Disease Degrees: 1 degree: palate; 2 degrees: pharynx - oral part; 3 degrees: uvula; 4 degrees: Pharyngeal cavity; 5 degrees: larynx; 0 - 6 degrees: drowning; 6 degrees: vocal cords; 7 degrees: cervical nerves; 8 degrees: alcoholism, jugular veins; 9 degrees: cervical veins, neurasthenia; 10 - 13 degrees: cervical and bravial plexi, neurasthenia; 14 degrees: true vocal cords; 15 degrees: epiglottis; 16 degrees: carotid arteries, abscess; 17 degrees: thyroid glands and tonsils; 18 degrees: lymph vessels, hair; 19 degrees: maxillary artery, alcoholism, goiter; 20 degrees: occiput, goiter, alcoholism; 21 degrees: arteries of the nasal cavity, alcoholism; 22 degrees: tongue muscles, rheumatism, alcoholism; 23 degrees: teeth, rheumatism, alcoholism; 24 degrees: upper jaw, fractures, broken bones, alcoholism; 25 degrees: lower jaw, fractures, broken bones, alcoholism, adenoids, suicide; 26 degrees: nasal bone; 27 degrees: atlas, alcoholism; 28 degrees: alcoholism, deltoid muscle and main neck muscles; 29 degrees: deltoid muscle and main neck muscles, eyesight; 30 degrees: Trapezius muscle. 

Remedies for Imbalanced and/or Weakened Taurus: Warming and stimulating activities, with emphasis on detoxifying activities. Eating a whole foods diet is important to all signs, but Taurus folk need to be especially mindful of the quality of their food and eating mindfully. 

Gifts of Taurus: Resourcefulness, grounding and centering, body knowledge, long-term planning, and consistent energy.

Rituals of Taurus: Expressing body-positive sensuality, fertility and abundance, successful long-term plans, such as business endeavors or big material investments, stability, and invoking or supporting long-term romantic partnerships. Artistic and musical rituals in which the pleasure of the senses are indulged.

Taurus Guardian Herbs: Sage (Salvia officinalis), Rose (Rosa spp.), Thyme (Thymus vulgaris), Plantain (Plantago major), Mugwort (Artemisia vulgaris), Nettles (Urtica dioica)

Taurus Remedy Herbs: Gingko (Gingko biloba), Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis), Ashwaghanda (Withania somnifera), Burdock (Arctium lappa)

Flower + Gem Essences: Aspen (Populus tremula), Gentian (Gentiana amarella), Peacock Ore, Willow (Salix vitellina)

The Sun in Taurus

Taurus is the first earth sign and fixed sign of the zodiac and they embody these energies well. Where Aries is quick-moving, Taurus is slow and steady. The bulls are typically the longest lived of all the signs of the zodiac even with their tendency that when they do get sick for it to be a permanent or chronic condition. Earthly, sensual, and indulgent pleasure (as opposed to the more artistic and balanced pleasure of Libra) can be a focus of Taurus folks. Overindulgence is something to be wary of if you your Sun or Ascendent is in Taurus or if many of your other planets are in the sign of the Bull. Typically, Taurus folks tends towards the materialistic such as the garden growing in their backyard versus a mystical garden of new age enlightenment located halfway between paradise and nirvana. 

If you have known someone with a strong Sun in Taurus, you have probably met the legendary stubbornness of the sign. Think about the idea of being “bull-headed” and you’ll begin to understand the Taurean temperament. They very much need to believe that something is their idea before they commit and if they aren’t interested or perceive something to be not useful, they can be hurtful in how they express their opinions. Learning to connect with their emotional world and not just the physical world is a challenge for most Taurus folks but well worth the effort if they want as enduring and fruitful a relationship with others as they have with their garden. All that said, Taurus folks are very loyal in relationships, their endurance for seeing a project through is matched only by their stubbornness, and they can be profoundly inspiring when it comes to helping folks re-member and re-connect to the sacredness of physical embodiment. 

As mentioned earlier, Taurus folks are typically the longest lived of all of the signs (again, it could be said that they stubbornly refuse to depart their physical form until they damn well want to). They can tend towards diseases and imbalances of congestion, cold, and impurity - they need to be very aware of what they eat and being sure to engage in regular energizing activities. The gift of Taurus Sun folks is that they are so blessedly grounded. They remind us to take pleasure in the physicality of life and not get so lost in our heads and the abstraction of pleasure or whether we should be desiring it. Be your pleasure, is what Sun in Taurus folks teach us.

Taurus Guardian Herbs

Rose by Alexis J. Cunningfolk

Rose by Alexis J. Cunningfolk

Rose (Rosa spp.)

18th century herbalist, J. Quincy, wrote that Rose “raises the spirits and gives sudden strength and cheerfulness” and categorized Rose as primarily a Cardiac and Cephalic or relating to the head. (1) In addition to strengthening the heart, Roses assist with memory and promotes clarity of mind, heart, and spirit by connecting all three. Rose nourishes the body and is sweet medicine which calms the nervous system. Within Ayurveda, Rose is considered a rasayana (rejuvenative tonic) and medhya (brain tonic + nervine) for all of the doshas. A very Taurean herb, indeed!

As an aphrodisiac, Rose is an opener - it opens the heart and body to sensual experience. Like many aphrodisiacs, Rose has nervine and nourishing qualities which help to relax and soothe the body so that it may become ready and desirous of intimacy. Additionally, Rose has also been shown to increase sperm count if fertility has been compromised because of lackluster sperm.

The benefits of Rose for the skin are manifold (anti-inflammatory, astringent, vitamin and mineral rich) and can be used in oils, scrubs, and baths for skin health and beauty. As a humectant, Rose Water adds and maintains water to the skin. Keep Rose Water in a spray bottle to use as a mild antiseptic for first aid needs.

As an herb of Venus, which is Taurus’ Guardian Planet, Rose and other Venusian herbs typically balance and cool the fiery energies of Mars in a chart. 

The latter was a sample from the much longer Rose Plant Profile available to my Lunar Apothecary students. Learn about the Rose Plant Personality, Rose Remedies, and a more in-depth exploration of Rose’s healing qualities as a member of the Lunar Apothecary!

Taurus Remedy Herb

image via  wikimedia.org

image via wikimedia.org

Ginkgo (Ginkgo biloba)

While warming herbs might be needed for Taurus folks who have fallen out of balance (such as Rosemary or Ginger), I generally reach for a tonic herb such as Ginkgo which connects with the underlying of wisdom of Taurus. Ginkgo is the oldest living plant species on earth and has more or less stayed the same for 200 million years. I mean, come on, how much more Taurus can you get? A longevity herb for a sign known for its longevity helps Taurus folks relax into and connect with the healing qualities of Ginkgo.

Ginkgo is an antioxidant-rich, blood-clearing, memory sharpening teacher. Taurus folk can have difficulty connecting the physical reality with their emotional experiences, so Ginkgo can help them learn to interact with their emotional and spiritual landscape. I have also found the plant to help open up pathways to useful communication which Taurus folk can struggle to find when they feel apathetic, depressed, or ignoring and/or confused by their emotions. Ginkgo is clearing, moving out stagnation that may have settled in the body as pain, whether the slow healing of wounds or painful pre-menstrual tension. 

As a longevity herb, Ginkgo not only helps us live longer but live longer with vitality. My experiences with the herb is that because it connects the brain and heart (via the blood) so well it helps us to make better choices that will support vitality into our elder years.

Sun in Taurus Flower Essence

Peacock Ore supports the foundational gifts of Taurusfolk – making spirit into matter – and helps keep them from feeling that they are stuck in the mud when life feels burdensome and challenging. The stone itself looks like a healing Taurean aura - dark and rich with rainbow gleams of fertile promise. The stone aligns the energy centers of the body and creates energetic motion which can be very useful for Taurus folks who feel stuck or bogged down. Peacock Ore helps connects us back to hope in times of hopelessness and joy when it is needed most.

Get access to the Taurus Tamer and Taurus Power blend as well as Taurus inspired rituals and charms in the Lunar Apothecary!

Ready to learn more?

(1) Tobyn, Graeme, Alison Denham, and Margaret Whitelegg. The Western Herbal Tradition: 2000 Years of Medicinal Plant Knowledge. Edinburgh: Elsevier, 2011.

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Whole + Healing Sensuality : Full Moon in Taurus

The following is the most recent excerpt from my bi-monthly astroherbology newsletter to Lunar Apothecary members. Want to learn more about medicinal and magickal herbology? Join our year-long herbal adventure!

Taurus Full Moon

Congrats! You made it through the wild star weather we've been having lately! Your prize is a big and sturdy, gorgeous and bold, Taurus Full Moon! You know what Taurus teaches us, divine friends? Taurus teaches us a whole heck of a lot just like all of the signs, but with a big Taurus Full Moon hanging like a ripe promise on the horizon, she is especially teaching us about sensuality. Our earthy Taurus calls us back to the sacred temple of our bodies because our physical natures are special. Taurus calls us to sensuality on a rooted, grounded, physical level.

As plantfolks and herbologists, we facilitate relationships between plant, humyn, and creature. Ask yourself, where does the sensuality lie in your process of remedy-making, herb-recommending, and tea-drinking? It is easy to fall into the trap of mechanical thinking: our body is a machine that often gets broken and we need to take this pill (whether herbal or pharmaceutical) to make it better. To get in touch with the grounded nature of Taurean sensuality, I would encourage a practice of magickal thinking. Of your cup of tea not just being "what I should take when I'm sick" but a curved horn boat that allows you to ride through the watery currents of your body. Taurus encourages us to get tucked into ourselves. Get cozy in our bodies. Snuggle our bones.

I see a lot of folks running from body sensuality - I've done it, too. It is hard to reside in a physical form that we don't always feel at home in whether or not because we judge it to not be good enough or it doesn't match up with who we know ourselves to be. Taurus, being of earth and sturdiness, asks us to put aside what we think about our body and to feel our body instead. Do the things that feel good and pleasurable. Hot baths or long stretching. Gentle strokes and firm massage. A home-cooked meal and warm blankets. Bare earth beneath your feet and spices crushed between fingers.
 

How do you practice sensuality, sweet friend?

Rooty tonics are great Taurus remedies. Dandelion Root (Taraxacum officinalis), Burdock (Arctium lappa), Angelica (Angelica archangelica), Ginger (Zingiber officinalis) as well as herbs like Rose (Rosa spp.), Sage (Salvia officinalis), and Thyme (Thymus vulgaris). Think about nutrient rich herbs in blends meant to tonify and strengthen the whole body. Taurus Moons can bring up a lot work around our ancestral heritage that we experience in our bodies, so think about working with flower essences like Rose, Lotus, and Black Cohosh that can help us navigate some of the emotional baggage we carry as well as embrace the strength we've inherited. Sit in the Fourth Moon Mansion (we cover all of the Mansions in new ways in the Lunar Apothecary!) and learn - it is an exceptional place to unpack and settle into our truth.

Looking for a nourishing Taurus inspired recipe? Check out our Beautiful Sustenance Chaga Chai!

A History of Thievery: Making Medicinal Vinegars

Death Plays with Medicine, Hartman Schedel, 1493 via Histoire de la Medecine

What is full of essential amino acids, vibrant enzymes, vitamins, and minerals and balances the bodies acid/alkaline state and tastes good?

Apple cider vinegar!

 In the body, apple cider vinegar diminishes thirsts, helps to relieve feelings of restlessness, manages fevers, and has an overall cooling effect. Externally, apple cider vinegar keeps skin smooth, treats sprains and bruises, checks perspiration odor, and relieves inflammation and itching.  Making medicinal vinegars is abundantly easy. They are great alternatives to alcohol and glycerine based extracts and have a long history of use in western herbalism. Ever heard of the infamous Four Thieves Vinegar?

One version of the legend has it that four thieves were robbing the dying or dead during the height of the European plague and when they were finally caught they made a deal with their captors. In exchange for freedom they would reveal the secret that kept them from succumbing to the deadly disease. Four Thieves Vinegar was the recipe that was revealed.

Want to make some Four Thieves Vinegar of your own?
It's easy!

First, find yourself some good, unpasturized (raw), preferably local, apple cider vinegar. Delight in its golden glow!

Next, you will need equal parts of the following dried herbs for your thieving vinegar of health and wellbeing:

  • Sage (Salvia officinalis) 
  • Lavender (Lavandula officinalis)
  • Lemon Balm (Melissa officinalis)
  • Rosemary (Rosemarinus officinalis)
  • Thyme (Thymus vulgaris)

It is important to use dried herbs for this recipe, with the exception of our next ingredient, to reduce the possibility of spoilage with the addition of any water content to the recipe. In my experience, vinegar is an excellent and trusted preservative, but it is always best to  use caution.

Our next ingredient is fresh garlic and a small onion, both excellent and zesty foods for colds and the 'flu.

Combine equal parts of each of the herbs and mix them into a course powder with a mortar and pestle, electric grinder or willpower. Place all herbs, garlic, and onion into a clean jar and cover with raw apple cider vinegar. Shake!

Let all the contents settle and top off with more apple cider vinegar, if necessary, so there is an inch of vinegar resting above the herbs. Cap tightly (put a wax paper between jar and cap if using a metal lid to prevent erosion), label with the ingredients and date made as well as the date it should be decanted, shake and sing to daily. In about three weeks time your brew will be ready. Strain the herbs from your vinegar and enjoy your super vinegar elixir! You can take one teaspoon up to four times daily when feeling sick or to prevent feeling like you have the plague. You can also add some to your salads as a dressing which is one of my favorite ways to get my daily dose of medicinal vinegar.

Above all, be generous and share with your friends and family.  They'll probably think you're clever - stealing away their health woes with your charmed bottle of vinegar.

P.S. Let's protect our herbal heritage, including medicinal vinegars, from thievery - be sure to support the FREE FIRE CIDER movement!

 


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