by Brittany Findlay Driver
At ˈärdər botanicals we run on magick, Body Magick, Blood Magick and Sex Magick. So it should come as no surprise that this All Hallow’s Eve, we are focusing on plant lore and magick. It should also be fairly obvious which plant is our favorite, and the focus of our products...cannabis!While there aren’t many scientific or scholarly articles on plant magic, there is a wealth of historical information that supports its strength.
Though there are no black cats involved, many cultures regard certain plants with a cautious superstition. For instance, in the UK, one writer remembers her mother forbidding any Cardamine Pratensis (better known as Milkmaids, Cuckoo Flower or Lady’s Smock) in the home at any time because it was said these were fairy flowers and if taken inside, fairies would come and drag you back to Fairyland. It is also said that if picked and brought into your house, lightning would strike the flower. Another plant shrouded in myth is Crataegus, also known as the May Blossom or Hawthorne. They should never be picked before the first of May and never brought inside as it is said to cause bad luck, the death of a child, and even infidelity. In 1866, the 19th century’s Gentlemen’s Magazine even noted that “according the country cottagers the scent of hawthorn was ‘exactly like the smell of the Great Plague of London’.”
But it isn’t all bad. Think back on a time when you or someone you know has used the phrase “knock on wood” or “touch wood.” These are said because trees have long been regarded as protectors - they are steadfast, deeply rooted and can provide shelter and fuel for fire (which in turn provides warmth and the ability to heat food). Respecting trees for their protection is a phenomenon that isn’t tied to one particular area either - this idea can be found in many cultures. From the Middle East to the Czech Republic, from Brazil to Greece - phrases like “knock on wood” and “touch wood” are said to bring good luck to those who heed the command.
So how does cannabis play into plant magick? Anyone who has tried our products can tell you - the seven pointed leaf holds rich healing powers for almost anything that ails you. Yes, cannabis has long been regarded as a cure-all and has been used orally (by smoking or eating) and topically (by applying directly to the skin) for centuries.
Much in the way that shamans are known to use various plants to enhance their abilities, those practicing with cannabis can further elevate themselves during meditation as well. In order to help open the mind and allow for a deeper meditation and spirit flight, Devin Hunter of WitchesAndPagans.com recommends strains with a lower CBD content,
“When working with the plant spiritually to alter consciousness and raise vibration, we want to work with strains with higher amounts of THC and minimal amounts of CBD. Too much CBD can make the body feel heavy after sometime and will either put you to sleep for a few hours, or will make it difficult to maintain focus during spiritual exploration.”
Consuming edible marijuana will produce a much longer, and often more intense and psychedelic experience than simply smoking the herb, so take time to consider exactly what response you are looking for from your body before you begin. An edible will take 30 minutes to an hour to take effect, whereas smoking cannabis will produce almost instant results.
Reddit user frantic_iguana explains their use of smoking cannabis in witchy work,
“The act of rolling and preparing the joint has become a crucial ritual in many of my practices, especially when I am casting. The careful preparation of it then its destruction act as an offering to the forces that be. Weed is an excellent tool in spirit exploration, often bringing forth energy you would have otherwise overlooked. It is unfortunate that so many experience anxiety and paranoia during a high; but I do think these are reactions from a deeper center within that must be confronted in order to overcome them.”
Cannabis can be used to not only enhance mediation, but also during tarot reading and spell casting. When doing a tarot reading, some will take a puff of cannabis and blow the smoke over the cards as an offering and as a way to shift their consciousness and better interpret the cards. The herb can be ground up and used in spell jars, sachets and poppets - but be careful with poppets, sometimes referred to voodoo dolls. Never attempt to set into motion something that you are unable to undo. Cannabis stems and leaves can also be used along sage and bound into smudging bundles.
Pairing cannabis with magick is not going to be for everyone, so make sure to reflect on your experience after it is over. Perhaps cannabis inhibits your ability to practice because it distracts you, making you less able to do what you have set out to complete. The herb does not work the same for everyone.
So whether you smoke, eat or apply cannabis to your skin - it will have an effect on your mind and body. Whether or not it works in conjunction with your practice of magick can only be determined by you. If you haven’t tried it yet, we suggest you give it a while (as long as it is legal in your state, of course).
Do you use cannabis in your rituals? If so, let us know how! Have you tried it and found it doesn’t work well for you? Tell us about that too. We love to hear from our readers!