Posted tagged ‘gravel root’

Blog Post 76 – Making an Academic Crown of Success Mojo

August 5, 2010

Today I thought I’d share some of the nuts and bolts (or roots and herbs, rather) I used in my recent Crown of (Academic) Success mojo bag.  The hand I made was specifically designed for help with schoolwork, and focused on memory, hard work, a strong will, and a little bit of luck.  After I go over this basic bag, I’ll try to offer some alternatives for various situations not related to school, but which could use a shot of success.

The ingredients:

  • High John root (a whole one, but you could use chips if that’s all you’ve got)
  • Gravel Root
  • Rosemary (dried)
  • Sage (dried)
  • Frankincense tears
  • Small psalm scroll*
  • Red flannel square
  • Twine
  • Crown of Success oil

(*In most general Crown of Success workings, I use a passage from Psalm 65: “You crown the year with success; your paths drip fatness,” which would be fine.  But after discussing it with commenter Odom the other day, I’m reasonably sure I used Psalm 119, specifically the verses “I have declared myself and you heard me; teach me your statutes/make me to understand your ways so I may tell of your wondrous works”)

The herb and root ingredients all relate to success (gravel root, High John, Crown of Success oil), focus and concentration (sage, frankincense, rosemary), wisdom (sage, frankincense), luck (gravel root, Crown of Success oil), memory and calm (rosemary), and study (sage).  I know that some folks out there would chide me for using rosemary as a memory herb when Cat Yronwode’s book doesn’t provide that association, but its longstanding folk association with that quality made me comfortable with using it in that capacity.  And since I spent a good deal of time studying Shakespeare over the summer, I’ll back up my claim by quoting Ophelia in Hamlet, Act IV, scene v: “There’s rosemary; that’s for remembrance.”  So, yeah.  That’s that.

When I did this spell, I dressed a small candle with Crown of Success and burned it while I combined the ingredients in the center of the red flannel square.  Once I had the herbs and roots together, I wrote out the psalm scroll and added it to the ingredients.  I bundled it all up and wrapped the bag’s “neck” up with the twine.  I prayed Psalm 119 over it three times (that’s an acrostic psalm, so I only read the pertinent section of it), then singed the ends of the twine in the candle flame.  I dressed the bag with the Crown of Success oil and blew out the candle, and voila!  One back-to-school mojo!

I fed the bag every day I had class, just before leaving my room.  I alternated using Crown of Success oil and whiskey to splash the bag, and I recited Psalm 65 every time I did it (mostly because that’s the one I remember better—you may have more luck with Psalm 119).

Now that I’m done with it for this year, I’ve got it sitting by my bedside (though I should probably put it in my altar desk instead).  I’ll bring it back out next year, or if I do some intensive studying (as I’m prone to do every few months), I may use it again, then.  When my time at school is done, I’ll probably bury it somewhere on campus.

So that’s the Scholar’s Success bag.  I hope that was of some use to someone out there—well, other than me, of course.  If you do this spell or something similar, post a comment and let us all know about it!  I know I’d like to hear any tips for succeeding in education, especially before next summer when I go back to school!

Thanks for reading!

-Cory

Blog Post 26 – Gravel Root/Joe Pye Weed

March 5, 2010

Today I’d like to discuss an ingredient found in both Native American medicinal practices and Southern conjure and root work.  The flowering herb known as both Gravel Root and Joe Pye Weed can be found throughout most of the eastern half of North America, including portions of Canada, Texas, and Florida.  Its botanical name is Eupatorium purpureum, and it is also sometimes known as Purple Boneset or Queen of the Meadow.

The story behind Joe Pye Weed stems back to a Native American named, aptly enough, Joe Pye, who used the root to heal typhus.  It’s been used in tisane form—both root and flower—to help with kidney problems (though I will recommend here that if you are considering drinking ANY tea made from an herb to consult with a health professional and be SURE you know what you’re drinking).  Foxfire 11 gives some good information on the traditional medicinal use of this wild herb.

The plant itself is often found as a wildflower in fields and “waste” spaces like construction zones (though it doesn’t last as long here).  It’s a perennial so if you cultivate it instead of wildcrafting you should see it coming back regularly.  Joe Pye can reach heights around four feet, so take that into account when planting it.  It can also reseed, so you might want to thin them occasionally.  It has flowers which range from white to pinkish to lavender and purple, and butterflies love it.

Its magical uses tend to be split depending on what part of the plant you’re using.  The leaves and flowers are considered “Queen of the Meadow,” and are not particularly used in traditional hoodoo, though I’ve seen it show up in a spell for success.  Catherine Yronwode mentions putting the flowers in a glass of water next to a burning candle to attract spirits and visions.  The root, which is often the most sought-after part of the plant, is a fantastic help in job-search, success, and luck magic.  I recently used a bit of Gravel Root in a mojo hand along with High John and a copy of Psalm 65 in order to help procure some magical aid with an academic pursuit, which turned out very well.

Joe Pye Root

You can find more on this herb/root in Catherine Yronwode’s Hoodoo Herb and Root Magic, as well as the websites listed below.

Thanks for reading!

-Cory

More information:

Medicinal and identification information – http://www.altnature.com/gallery/joe_pye_weed.htm

Cultivation and propagation information – http://oldfashionedliving.com/joe-pye-weed.html

Folklore and Appalachian history – http://appalachianhistory.blogspot.com/2007/08/queen-of-meadow-cures-all.html


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