NATURAL CURES & HERBAL MEDICINES
from Hewellyn's Moon Sign Book, 1974 pp. 317-324. Compiled by Tom Kuzma and Jewel.
In today 's modern society with countless synthetic drugs, the question may well be asked: Why use herbs? But after experiencing the plethora of side effects of synthetic medicines, people today are returning at last to the valuable remedial properties of herbs and fruit and vegetable juices. Nature's cures are the herbs and their seeds that grow naturally all over the earth and with which the human form has evolved inseparably over countless centuries.
Herbal healing predates recorded history. Its methods, handed down from generation to generation, were the basics for the witch lore of the past, and supplied, as well, the first medical advances in the treatment of most human disease.
Unnecessary, profit-motivated advertising has turned people's heads toward the quick acting pain relieving drugs of science that eliminate the body's symptoms and warning signals, but do not eradicate the cause of the disease. Herbs are food for the human body and mind. They contain the vitamins, minerals and other nutritional factors necessary to the balance of the body 's systems, as do the other natural foods we eat (vegetables, fruits, grains, etc).
The purpose of a remedy is to help the body cure itself. When certain organic minerals and vitamins necessary for balance are lacking in our diet, disease results. Herbs supply the body with the essential elements it needs to rebuild the areas weakened or damaged by disease.
Synthetic drugs kill disease organisms, but destroy as well the necessary and beneficial organisms that promote absorption of nutrients, vitamin B12 synthesis, and protection against invading disease organisms. Moreover, synthetic drugs do not correct the underlying nutritional imbalance so that although the manifestation of disease is removed, the patient is rendered susceptible to new disease, which inevitably reoccurs.
Natural herbs have an advantage over modern drugs. As they are living energy-matter, herbs contain an organic combination of substances in the proportions needed by the human body. In their natural form the body can easily assimilate and convert them into healing remedies. Moreover, because of these elements, herbs can be used effectively as an aid to the body in preventing as well as healing disease.
HOW TO PREPARE HERBAL REMEDIES
INFUSIONS are made as is regular tea, by pouring 1 pint boiling water over 1/2 ounce of herb flowers or leaves and steeping for a few minutes. Honey is sometimes added for sweetening.
DECOCTIONS are made of the hard parts of the herb--the stems, roots, bark, seeds-and they have to boil for some time to extract their full value.
To make a FOMENTATION dip a cloth or heavy towel into a decoction or an infusion. Wring out the extra moisture and apply externally to the affected area.
For SALVES, take 8 parts vaseline or lard to 2 parts herbal, stir, and mix well while hot. Use when cool.
To make a POULTICE, put the herbs loosely in a flannel bag large enough to cover the area. Pour boding water over the bag and then wring out the extra moisture inside a towel. Use the poultice as hot as possible. It is good for nerve pains, painful joints and muscles, and promotes restful sleep when applied to the abdomen.
The most liked remedy is the poultice: juniper; willow; and hops plus coarse salt. Herbs put directly into a cavity are: yarrow; raw cow parsnip; grindelia; sweet cicely (pain reducer). Chewed herbs are: tobacco (best); yarrow; yerba mansa; blue flag. Hops tea is given for baby teething.
Teas of camomile (most effective; sweet cicely; yarrow (said to relieve fever in 24 hours if taken every 30 minutes); catnip; elderberry; peppermint and honey. Also sponge patient with common baking soda & water. Spearment tea for children.
Teas of pennyroyal (best); black cohash (depressed feelings); catnip; sweet cicely; camomile (good to regulate monthly periods, strengthens uterus after childbirth, good for nervous disorders); parsley taken as a juice or tea; St. John (tea: regulates menstrual flow, excellent for chronic uterine troubles & after pain in childbirth).
Corn silk (use fresh or dry for trouble with prostate gland in urinating; also for painf urination-taken as tea). Chickweed salve (applied after bathing to cure burning and itching genitals)
SORES, CUTS, WOUNDS
Poultice of grated raw carrot; comfrey; dandelion; juniper; red clover; sweet cicely; skunk cabbage; yarrow and yerba mansa (best); cod liver oil (stops infection).
A glass of milk taken 2 hours after each meal; for gas ~~ caraway and sweet cicely teas; teas of sage (most useful); golden seal; chamomile; marigold leaves (highly recommended); mint peppermint; slippery elm; valerian; yarrow; and dandelion.
To encourage growth ingest wheat germ, cod liver oil or lecithin daily.
Make an ointment of apple cider vinegar, or boric acid instead of soap and water. Internally, you can take lecithin daily, or spikenard, valerian, plantain.
EYES, BLACK OT SORE
Use arnica in water if the skin isn't broken, or witch hazel in water if it is broken. A poultice made of scraped raw potatoes is also effective. For dark circles and faded eyes, try eating more blueberries, tomatoes, avocados, eggplant, and sunflower seeds.
Teas of camomile; catnip; hops (or pillow stuffed under head); lady's slipper (highly recommended); eating raw onions; hot foot bath before bed; rose leaves with mint heated as a compress.