DISCLAIMER: I am not a health care provider, trained herbalist, nor homeopath. I am just a person who has used and researched these integrated therapies for close to 20 years and I use them on myself and my family and have had excellent results. Please read the safety precautions of each herb before ingesting, or consult a health care provider.
This summer, while my herb garden was in full swing, I dried copious amounts for devotional tea blends I planned to make for some of the Gods in our household’s pantheon. These teas are meant to be nourishing in both body, mind and spirit and can also be used as incense. I enjoy multi-purposed things.
The God of The Hunt is most revered in our household. This God is known by many and goes by many names; I chose one of the most popular guises, Cernunnos to call this blend. If you want to understand just how much we love The Lord of the Hunt, here is a devotional song created by my husband and I, he did the music, I did the lyrics and vocals.
Autumn time is when this God is gaining his strength that will culminate at the winter solstice, so making this tea blend is a wonderful activity for Samhain or as it is known secularly, Halloween.
I enjoy all the religious and secular celebrations this time of year, but the word that I keep hearing in my head when it comes to All Hallows is “traditional”. Don’t get me wrong, I love the costumes and trick or treating and parties, we just had a big one for my daughter this weekend, who is two (I dressed up as an elf!). But when it comes down the “must-haves” for this holiday, for me, it points to tradition. I like carving pumpkins in the late afternoon on Halloween, to get them ready to be put out at dusk, lighting the way for our ancestors while keeping away unwanted spirits. I like making a seasonal meal to celebrate the harvest and our growing winter larder. And Samhain doesn’t go by without us leaving out a nice offering of food and drink for our Ancestors and also The Lord of the Hunt, who holds a special place in our heart.
This tea blend features sage, birch (bark and leaf) and chaga in equal parts.
I used sage as a base for this blend because of its earthy smell and flavor, also it is an evergreen, which correlates to Cernunnos. Sage contains Thujone, which improves mental concentration, and something I have found helpful in meditation. Burning this blend as incense will create the cleansing and protective elements of sage.
The addition of birch, both bark and leaf is because of its association with the Yule log. The Yule log was traditionally of birch and since the power of Cernunnos culminates at the Winter Solstice, adding birch seemed appropriate.
And then there is chaga, the gift of the forest and of birch. I have talked about chaga before in my posts covering how to make a potent Cold & Flu Tincture (another great thing to make this time of year!) and in my Chaga Chai post. In simple terms, chaga is like spiritual medicine and since it is of the forest, Cernunnos approves.
Cernunnos definitely approves of this blend in general. As I was taking pictures for this post, the wind began to blow something fierce, carrying away the dried herbs back to nature and the forest. Burn some of your newly made mixture to honor all the spirits of this forest this autumn.
UP THE YUM: Leave some of this mixture as an offering anywhere you often see deer.
FEED YOUR CHAKRAS: Crown