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The Llewellyn Encyclopedia

Term: Herbal Codes

DEFINITIONS

Herbal Codes:

A system used by magicians, alchemists, Pagans, and others to disguise the actual herbs and minerals used in their rituals with other, sometimes far-fetched names. Thus, "strawberry juice" would be disguised by calling it "baby's blood" (in retrospect a questionable choice), thus throwing uninitiated and untrained people attempting to perform a magickal technique off the track by giving them misinformation.




ARTICLES

Herbal Codes — Or, You Don't Need to Kill a Black Cat
Many grimoires and books of magic use animals and their parts as codes for herbs and other materials. Here are a number of them, some from the Greek Magical Papyri (see PGM XII:401-44), a work composed between 200BC and 500AD. Others come from Galen ...
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Origins of Herb Magic
Herb magic began in the distant past, when humans first began experimenting with the plants that they found growing around them. Color, form, scent and taste attracted humans to certain plants. Our ancestors eventually dis-covered many uses for ...
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The Renaissance of Herb Magic
Fortunately, the herbs didn’t die out, and neither did much of the information. The great herbals by Theophrastus, Dioscorides, "Apuleius," Gerard, Coles and others preserved much herb magic, as did the works of Pliny, Agrippa, Porta and other early ...
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The Work of the Medsen Fey - the Leaf Doctors of Haiti
Loulou Prince is the medsen fey (leaf doctor/herbalist and shaman) for a Haitian community of around 1,500 people who live in the vicinity of Jacmel, a small town close to the border with the Dominican Republic. In his daily practice, he deals with ...
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Alchemy
The word alchemy is an Arabic term comprised of the article "al" and the noun "khemi." The later word relates to "Khem" the Coptic name of Egypt. Alchemy thus means, "that which pertains to Egypt." Thus the words alchemy and chemistry are a reminder ...
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What Is an Herb?
Even botanists haven’t been able to agree on this. In magic, we avoid these arcane arguments by simply stating that an herb is any plant or any part of a plant that’s used in magic. An "herb" can be a cactus, a flower, a seaweed, a moss, a mushroom, ...
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Witchcraft: Death and Resurrection
Soon the leaders of the new religion, determined to wield absolute control over all aspects of human life, sought to stamp out such crimes of heresy as foretelling the future, psychic healing, spiritualism, the creation of protective amulets and ...
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The Sacred Circle Tarot
Summary: The Sacred Circle Tarot features brilliant, realistic art and a totally Celtic Pagan orientation. Perfect for art collectors, Pagans, and people who already have experience with Tarot, its uniqueness is its high point and its challenge, as ...
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Golden Dawn Time Line
1887   Westcott decodes the Cipher Manuscript. He asks Mathers and Woodman to join him in setting up the new Order. March 1, 1888 Isis-Urania Temple #3 is chartered. Westcott, Woodman, and Mathers are the Three Chiefs. Mina Bergson (Moina Mathers) ...
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Aura Reading & Interpretation
Introduction. Seeing the Aura is one step, but without the ability to read and Interpret is an “empty” skill. To analyze and interpret observations is a key step to success in nearly any endeavor. Always we start by organizing the ...
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I've written a number of books for Llewellyn over the years—believe it or not, my upcoming release is number eight—but far and away the most popular one was my third, The Goddess Is in the Details. And I have to confess, it was my favorite too. (Shhh…don't tell the other books. They'll cry, and I'll have to give them each a... read this article
Tarot: Let's Talk About Strength
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The Magic of Stars
Hacking Life, the Universe, and Everything through Afro-Cuban Ifá, Santería’s High Priesthood
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As we study the cards, we realize that each card has many meanings. A common question is “how do you know which meaning to use in a...

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The publishing industry has been changing for a long time now. Publishing can be a very slow behemoth, very conservative. So it was really refreshing...

The Five Minute Tarot
This weekend, at the North Star Tarot conference, Melani Weber presented a workshop. That workshop was the most fun I’d had in a very long time. And...




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