First, a strong note of caution. These plants can kill you. They have strong and determined Spirits, which is what makes them powerful allies in your magickal work. The best way to employ them is to burn them as incense (outside), use them as washes for ritual items, use them as a liquid to asperge the ritual area, or wear them in a cloth bag so they don’t touch your skin. Another safe approach is to purchase or make a homeopathic dilution, 30C or above, which will enable you to safely ingest the plant matter (if there is time I will briefly discuss how to prepare a homeopathic dilution). Wear gloves when handling these herbs. The most powerful method of all is to grow the plant yourself and form a strong bond with it by feeding it and talking to it. Then you can ask its Spirit for aid in your spiritual journey. I do not advise drinking these herbs, eating them, or putting them directly onto your skin. The herbs to be covered are:
1. Belladonna (Atropa belladonna) 2. Black Hellebore (Helleborus niger, H. officinalis) 3. Foxglove (Digitalis purpurea) 4. Hemlock (Conium maculatum) 5. Henbane (Hyoscyamus niger) 6. Mandrake (Atropa mandragora, Mandragora autumnalis, Mandragora officinarum) 7. Monkshood Aconite (Aconitum napellus) 8. Thornapple, Jimsonweed (Datura) (Datura Stramonium) 9. Tobacco, Wild Tobacco (Nicotiana rustica) 10. Werewolf Root, Spreading Dogbane (Apocynum androsaemifolium) 11. White Hellebore (Veratrum album) 12. Woody Nightshade (Solanum dulcamara) 13. Wormwood (Artemisia absinithum) 14. Yew (Taxus baccata, Taxus brevifolia, Taxus Canadensis) Ellen Evert Hopman has been a professional member of the American Herbalists Guild since 1995. She is the author of the award winning “Secret Medicines from your Garden - Plants for Healing, Spirituality and Magic” and other herbals.