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Makes about 9 pillows
In connection with the Dark Moon Feast of Hekate, I made these Dream Pillows for stimulating the intuitive and psychic centers. I mixed the following herbs in a wooden bowl and left them on my altar overnight. The next day, I stuffed the pillows. I found cotton cloth of dark blue scattered with colored stars, but another dark rich color, such as maroon, purple, indigo or even black, would be suitable. Velveteen would be lovely, if you can find a large enough remnant on sale.
Ingredients and what they're good for:
2 oz Mugwort - Prophetic Dreams
1/4 oz. whole Cloves - keep away hostile forces, add energy
1/2 oz. each of the following:
I cut the cloth in long rectangles, twice the length of the finished pillows; mine were approximately 8" X 16". Fold in half, inside out, so measures 8" X 8", and sew around 2 and 1/2 of the open sides - i left 1/2" hem allowance. Turn right side out, pushing cloth through unsewn half-side opening. Using a wide neck funnel, a wooden spoon, and your fingers, pour the herbal blend into the pillows; i filled each one with about 1/2 cup of herbs, then went back and evenly divided the remainder among the pillows. Top-stitch the openings, folding the raw edges to the inside.
The pillow were placed under the altar table during the ritual to charge them and then were distributed afterwards during the discussion period. For more pillows, just multiply ingredients as necessary.
Place in a small blender jar (used only for non-edible processing), a bowl, or a pestle, several tablespoons of each of the following 5 ingredients:
|Bay Leaves||Dittany of Crete||Dried Mint||Dried Thyme|
|And a tiny teeny weeny pinch of Asafoetida Powder
(also called Hing in Indian Markets)
Mix until almost powdered (or crumble by hand or with mortar & pestle).
Stir in one tablespoon of each of the following 4 ingredients:
|Dragon's Blood Resin||Frankincense Resin/Tears|
|Myrrh Resin/Tears||Black Poppy Seeds
|Cypress Oil - 5-10 drops||Camphor Oil - 2-3 drops|
Mix well. Let age at least one week before using, storing in a tightly sealed container in a dark place (under your altar?) and shaking occasionally. Burn on self-lighting charcoal. This is NOT at all sweet-smelling, but it is a powerful visionary incense, to help take you through the gateway.
The Nine Ingredients:
|1-1/2 cups unbleached wheat flour||1/2 tsp baking soda||1/2 tsp. salt|
|1/2 cup softened butter||1/2 cup honey||1 egg|
|1 tsp vanilla extract||1/2 tsp. almond extract|
|2 Tbs. black poppy seeds||1 tsp. anise seeds|
Sift together the first three dry ingredients, flour, salt, and soda. Cream together butter, honey, and egg. Blend dry and wet mixtures. Stir in extracts, then seeds. Shape in very thin crescent moons. The dough is quite soft and will spread in baking. Place at least 2" apart on cool oiled baking sheet. Bake at 350 F. for about 12 minutes, until lightly golden at the edges.
NOTE: the honey, almonds (in extract), black poppy seeds, and anise seeds are sacred to Hekate. Personally i'n not fond of anise, so i leave out the anise seeds.
To make a fire in a cauldron for magical and ritual work, you will need the following ingredients:
It is best to use a cast-iron cauldron, since one won't be too hard to get and it can withstand the heat. Don't use aluminum, since it sometimes melts or can even catch on fire. Never make an indoor fire in a cauldron that is painted, since burning or even very hot paint will produce dangerous fumes.
Some practitioners recommend half Epsom salts and half rubbing alcohol by volume (not by weight), for example, 1 cup of each. 70% isopropyl alcohol will burn, and it doesn't burn as hot as 90% isopropyl, which can be a very important consideration indoors for both safety and comfort. I just cover the bottom of my cauldron with a layer of epsom salts about 1-1/2 knuckles deep, then pour in the alcohol so that it's a little deeper than the salt. To ignite, light a long match, and hold it just above the surface of the alcohol. The fire will burn birghtly at first, then the flames will seem to skim the surface of the liquid.
This fire is safer for indoor use than one made of charcoal. Its by-products are carbon dioxide and water vapor, whereas charcoal will produce smoke and dangerous carbon monoxide. Nonetheless, it is important to make sure the room is adequately ventilated - crack open a door or window.
Always put the cauldron on a fireproof surface (such as a hearth, other tile surface, hot-plate, trivet, etc.). Make sure that there are no flammable items nearby (like floaty cloth) and that the only nearby objects are reasonably heat-resistant. Taper candles will bend or even melt, if too close. Votives and other kinds of candles in glass holders are o.k.
You can burn small pieces of paper in the cauldron, if you toss them in one at a time. Larger pieces or several at once often won't burn, or won't burn completely. If the fire is really hot, however, you might get pieces of glowing ash floating around the room, so use caution.
Be sure to keep a large box of baking soda handy, as well as a lid large enough to cover the cauldron completely. If the fire should get too hot or flare dangerously, dump in the baking soade and slap down the lid. Don't touch the cauldron with your bare hands. Leather all-purpose work gloves might be good to have, too. It's also a good idea to keep a bucket of water nearby in case things get out of hand.
Let the cauldron burn out by itself. How long this will take depends on the size of the cauldron and how much fuel you have put into it. Wait until it's cool, and then fill the inside with water to loosen the grayish mass of salts that've been fused together by the fire. If you put the water in soon after it is cool enough to handle, and let it soak overnight, it won't be too hard to clean.
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