Our kitchen witch Silja shows you how to tap into the magical properties of your favourite herbs
Basil was used to make the embalming fluids used for Egyptian mummies to help mask their odour, and is also a sacred herb in India, where it is planted around temples to keep them prosperous and protected from unwanted spirits. In parts of ancient Greece and Crete, basil was placed on window ledges during storms to prevent the winds blowing in negativity and curses. The word “Basil” derives from the Greek word Basilikos, meaning “herb worth of kings”.
In the Middle Ages, planting basil in your garden was supposed to ward off the basilisk, a mythological snake creature. In contrast, during the following Renaissance, some physicians counseled against even smelling basil, as it was believed it would cause scorpions to grow in the brain!
Throw some basil leaves (dried is fine if you do not have fresh) into your open fire in January to ward off negativity and prevent the aftermath of the Christmas festivities from costing you too much money. Alternatively, sprinkle it on window sills and by the door before going out to keep warmth and happiness inside your home.
If you are reading tarot or doing other divination at the beginning of the New Year to figure out your path in 2017, place a basil leaf over each of your closed eyes as you consider the questions to ask, or eat something with basil to help calm and guide you in your chosen life path.
Basil is a herb that is easy to grow in a little pot in the kitchen, which is then transferred outside during the warmer months. It’s aromatic green leaves symbolise money and financial success, and are easily incorporated in kitchen magic as well as in spells. If you do not like the taste of ordinary basil, do not worry – try one of the many varieties on offer such as Thai basil, or leaves that have lemon, spicy cinnamon or even chocolate-scents!
Now try this…
Useful spells for basil
1 To attract money into your home after an expensive holiday season, place five basil leaves and five copper coins under your front door mat. As you place down each coin and leaf, say, “Money come to me – just as much as I need, so I plant the seed. Greedy I am not, I don’t need a lot.”
2 Needing to gain more income? Prepare a dish with lots of basil (spaghetti with pesto is especially good, as the yellow pasta symbolises energy and inspiration), and eat it on a Thursday before discussing possible options with your family or asking for a raise at work.
3 If you are prone to spend too much when out shopping, place a green string in your wallet with basil oil rubbed into it in such a way that you see it every time you open your wallet to pay. It’ll soon curb bad habits.
Did you know?
Basil was traditionally grown on St Basil’s feast day on 2nd January. Greek people believe that on this date bread containing a coin should be baked and given to family
Silja is a Celtic Wiccan high priestess and has led a Celtic training coven in Ireland. She now divides her time between Dublin, Ireland and Arkansas, USA. Silja is the author of The Green Wiccan Book of Shadows and The Green Wiccan Herbal. Check out her Facebook page at facebook.com/SiljasGreenWiccan