December 1st, 2007

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Herb: Damiana

Botanical: Turnera aphrodisiaca (WILLD.)
Family: N.O. Turneraceae

---Part Used---Leaves.
---Habitat-- -Mexico, South Arnerica, Texas, West Indies.

---Description- --A small shrub; leaves smooth and pale green on upper side, underneath glabrous, with a few hairs on the ribs, ovolanceolate, shortly petiolate with two small glands at base; flowers yellow, rising singly from axils of the leaves, capsule one-celled splitting into three pieces; smell aromatic, taste characteristic, bitterish, aromatic and resinous.

---Constituents- --A greenish volatile oil, smelling like chamomile, amorhpous bitter principle Damianin, resins and tannin.

---Medicinal Action and Uses---Mild purgative, diuretic, tonic, acting directly on the reproductive organs, stimulant, hypochondriastic, aphrodisiae.

---Preparations- --Fluid extract, 1/2 to 1 drachm. Solid extract, 5 to 10 grains. Often combined with Nux Vomica, Phosphorus, etc.

---Other Species---
Turnera opifera leaves are used as an infusion and given as an astringent and tonic by the natives of Brazil, also T. ulmifolia for its tonic and expectorant properties.

Aplopappus discoideus was formerly sold as Damiana, but can easily be detected, as the leaves are distinctly lanceolate, with only two or three teeth on either side.



What is Damiana?

Scientific and Medicinal Information
Damiana is a low-growing plant that loves dry soil and plenty of rocks. It's native to Mexico, Central and South America. The flowers are yellow and small, and damiana bears a small sweet-smelling fruit as well. It's used as an herbal remedy to enhance sexual performance, as well as a very long list of other physical ailments.

Also Known As
Latin: Turnera diffusa or Turnera aphrodisiaca
Common names: damiana

Magickal Properties
Damiana was used as an aphrodesiac tea by the Aztecs and the Mayans, and is still used today predominantly in love and sexuality spells. It's also used for fertility, but that is strictly a magickal association (NOT a medical one ).

The leaves are used in magick, and can be worked in charm bags, incense or even in tea. If you make damiana tea, be prepared to add honey or sugar. I've heard it's quite bitter. One warning though, you should not consume damiana tea if you are pregnant or diabetic. Damiana is also sometimes used as an incense to promote psychic dreams.

More Correspondences
Planet: Mercury, Venus
Element: Fire
Associated Deities: Venus

Disclaimer: No information within this newsletter should be considered
medical advice. Please do further research or check with a physician
before using any of these herbs in a medical fashion.

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Herbal substitutes for magic

Magickal Herb Substitute List

Acacia - Gum Arabic
Acacia Gum - Gum Arabic
Aconite - Tobacco
Arabic, Gum - Frankincense, Gum Mastic
Ammoniac Gum - Asafetida
Asafetida - Tobacco, Velerian
Balm of Gilead - Rose Buds, Gum Mastic
Belladonna - Tobacco
Benzoin - Gum Arabic, Gum Mastic
Camphor Oil - Eucalyptus Oil, Lavender Oil
Carnation - Rose Petals
Cassia - Cinnamon
Castor Beans - Four Drops of Castor Oil
Cedar - Sandalwood
Cinquefoil - Clover, Trefoil
Citron - One part Orange and One part Lemon Peel
Clove - Mace, Nutmeg
Clover - Cinquefoil
Copal - Frankincense, Cedar
Cowbane - Tobacco
Cypress - Juniper, Pine Needles
Deers Tongue - Tonka bean, Woodruff, Vanilla
Dittany of Crete - Gum Mastic
Dragons Blood - 1 part Frankincense and 1 part Red Sandalwood
Eucalyptus Oil - Camphor Oil, Lavender Oil
Frankincense - Copal, Pine Resin
Galangal - Ginger Root
Grains of Paradise - Black Pepper
Gum Ammoniac - Asafetida
Gum Bedllium - Copal, Pine Resin, Dragon's Blood
Hellebore - Tobacco, Nettle
Hemlock - Tobacco
Hemp - Nutmeg, Damiana, Star Anise, Bay
Henbane - Tobacco
Hyssop - Lavender
Ivy - Cinquefoil
Jasmine - Rose
Juniper - Pine
Lavender - Rose
Lemon Grass - Lemon Peel
Lemon Verbena - Lemon Grass, Lemon Peel
Mace - Nutmeg
Mandrake - Tobacco
Mastic Gum - Gum Arabic, Frankincense
Mint - Sage
Mistletoe - Mint, Sage
Mugwort - Wormwood
Neroli Oil - Orange Oil
Nightshade - Tobacco
Nutmeg - Mace, Cinnamon
Oakmoss - Patchouli
Orange- Tangerine Peel
Orange Flower - Orange Peel
Patchouli - Oak Moss
Peppermint - Spearmint
Pepperwort - Rue, Grains of Paradise, Black Pepper
Pine - Juniper
Pine Resin - Frankincense, Copal
Red Sandalwood - Sandalwood and Dragons Blood
Rose - Yarrow
Rose Geranium - Rose
Rue - Rosemary, w/pinch of Black Pepper
Saffron - Orange Peel
Sandalwood - Cedar
Sarsaparilla - Sassafras
Sassafras - Sarsaparilla
Spearmint - Peppermint
Sulfur - Tobacco; Club Moss, Asafetida
Thyme - Rosemary
Tobacco - Bay
Tonka Bean - Dear Tongue, Woodruff, Vanilla Bean
Trefoil - Cinquefoil
Valerian - Asafetida
Vanilla - Woodruff, Deer Tongue, Tonka Bean
Vetivert - Calamus
Wolfsbane - Tobacco
Wood Aloe - Sandalwood w/Ambergris Oil
Woodruff - Deer Tongue, Vanilla
Wormwood - Mugwort
Yarrow - Rose
Yew - Tobacco
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Herbs for dream pillows

Make a pillow of these herbs for the following conditions:

Flowers of catnip, dill, goldenrod, hawthorn, hops or wild oregano

FOR MORE VIVID DREAMS Flowers and leaves of lavender, lemon balm, mint,
or mugwort

FOR PEACEFUL DREAMS Balsam, needles, chamomile flowers or the leaves of
mullein, potentilla (common cinque-foil), sage or sassafras

TO REMEMBER YOUR DREAMS Flowers of by, catnip, lavender, mugwort,
rosemary, or heliotrope(a flowering member of the borage family)

TO BANISH NIGHTMARES Leaves of anise, lemon balm, rosemary, or valerian

TO RELIEVE HEADACHES Leaves of bay, betony, marjoram, or mint, flowers
of bee balm or lavender, roses, or nutmeg cloves

TO DREAM OF LOVE Flowers of yarrow, roses, leaves of basil, coriander,
dill or myrtle

TO EASE HEARTACHE Any evergreen needles, especially balsam or pine,
lavender flowers, or lemon balm leaves


Psychic Dreams Pillow
3 oz. mugwort
2 oz. lavender
1 oz. mint leaves
1 oz. rose petals
Stuff into a close-weave-fabric pillow.