The Magic of Mint
Mint is known as a powerful, potent and prolific healing herb. Wherever it is planted it takes root, takes over and quickly overcomes almost any landscape provided for it to grow, which may be a nuisance to some. However, those knowledgeable of Mint's incredible power will see a bounty of an herb that has been known to heal many ailments; an herb that provides protection, and an herb that can draw the energies of wealth and prosperity to those willing to harness it.
Mint is generally known for its healing power. It is said that keeping a little mint tied to your wrist can keep you in good health and ward off disease. Mint may also be rubbed on the forehead to help alleviate a headache. Stuffing a poppet with Mint and then anointing it with healing oils is believed to ease an upset stomach.*
Even as early as back in Ancient Egypt, Mint was revered for its soothing, healing powers. It has been used to treat menstrual pains, intestinal upset, indigestion, headaches, morning sickness, as well as many other disorders not named. Mint’s cooling, soothing power has the ability to fight off infection, lessen inflammation, ease cramping and muscle spasms, and even dull pain. It is virtually a panacea, and a healing force to be reckoned with.*
Mint in Greek Mythology and Lore
Mint gets its name from the Greek word minthe. Minthe happens to be the name of a naiad, or water nymph, in Greek mythology, who presided over the river Cocytus. Cocytus is one of the rivers that surrounds Hades, the Underworld, so it’s no surprise that the King of the Underworld, Hades himself, may have happened upon this beautiful water nymph and found her attractive. The feeling was mutual, as Minthe was attracted to Hades as well, thus starting a relationship that made Persephone, Hades wife, quite jealous.
Persephone sought out Minthe and when she found her, trampled her underfoot with all her might. However, miraculously this did not manage to kill the nymph, but instead Minthe transformed into a plant.
Again and again, Persephone tried to snuff out Minthe’s life-force by trying to crush the plant but to no avail. Each time Persephone stepped on her, Minthe in her plant form would simply emit a sweet, minty aroma. This persistence displayed hearkens to a prominent property of the Mint plant – it’s quite hard to kill!
Mint Magical Properties and Uses*
There are plenty varieties of Mint, each unique in its own way and therefore, have unique qualities to contribute to magical workings. We felt it important to do our best to discuss some of the various forms of Mint and give you as much nuance as we can regarding to what they can contribute to your magical practice.
Peppermint Magical Properties and Uses
The ever-popular Peppermint is a pungently aromatic form of mint known for its use in candy canes and other confectioneries. Peppermint's power is masculine, its element is fire, and like its scent its energy is strong and penetrating.
It is believed that sniffing Peppermint can help one find sleep. Peppermint carries within it psychic energy, and placed under the pillow may help one envision their future in their dreams. Peppermint can also be used in purification rituals, spells regarding travel, and to excite feelings of love.
Spearmint Magical Properties and Uses
Spearmint, Peppermint's milder soothing sister, is feminine in its magical nature and unlike Peppermint, of the element Water. Spearmint's aroma can improve mental powers, and a pillow stuffed with Spearmint can protect one while asleep. Spearmint is used in candies as well as teas and jellies when a milder taste than Peppermint is preferred, and usually when the word "mint" is used generically, it's Spearmint that is being referred to.
Pennyroyal Magical Properties and Uses
Pennyroyal is also a form of mint, but unlike other Mint plants, Pennyroyal oil is poisonous, so practice caution and keep the plant away from children and animals. It is generally safe to ingest Pennyroyal in tea form, but don't do so for a prolonged period of time. Pregnant women should avoid ingesting Pennyroyal as it can lead to miscarriage and early labor.
Pennyroyal is an excellent herb for travellers; kept in the shoe it can help keep the feet from getting weary and can be carried when traveling by sea to prevent sea sickness. Pennyroyal's Latin name means flea, in reference to its use as a flea repellent.
Pennyroyal is an herb of protection and peace. Keep in the home (somewhere safe, where children and animals can't get to it) to safeguard the home and maintain an atmosphere of peace.
Apple Mint Magical Properties and Uses
Apple mint, being taller than most Mints with distinctive mauve leaves, is a mostly ornamental form of mint that is quickly gaining popularity as a decorative ground cover. It lends itself well to various dishes and delicacies due to its faint, apple aroma.
Apple mint is considered a “strewing” herb, as scattering it around the house, or where food might be stored, or any place that might attract rodents can help repel them. It was also strewn on temple floors to cause incoming worshipers to release its wonderful, sweet aroma as they stepped on the leaves.
Corn Mint Magical Properties and Uses
Corn mint was popularly used in Europe to heal disorders such as digestive problems and cough. The Aztecs would use it to induce sweating and cure insomnia. The Native Americans were found of corn mint as well, using it in their various traditions.
Corn mint isn't as fragrant as the other mints, but has more menthol content. The Chinese made much use of corn mint in their herbal medicine, believing the "cooling" properties of the plant were evidence of its ability to treat fevers and inflammation.*
The Healing Power of Mint
Mint has a generous amount of antioxidants -- higher than many other foods. Antioxidants help combat free radicals within our bodies that can cause illnesses such as cancer and heart disease.
Mint contains rosmarinic, an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory that has been shown to relieve seasonal allergy symptoms.
For first time breast-feeding mothers, a little peppermint water applied to the nipples can help reduce soreness and nipple cracks.
When it comes to upset stomach, gas and indigestion, Mint is a classic remedy. Peppermint tea is especially potent when it comes to dealing with flatulence.
Whether in an oil, ointment or lotion form, Mint can have a soothing effect when applied to bug and insect bites.
Mint balms and salves can be applied to the forehead to relieve headaches.
A simple whiff of Mint's pleasant and soothing aroma can help alleviate nausea. Keep this in mind if you are dealing with morning sickness or prone to motion sickness.
Mint's strong, penetrating aroma is a quick and perfect remedy when dealing with congestion, and can soothe irritations that cause chronic coughing.
A few drops of mint oil on the pillow before you go to bed can help prepare the mind and body to be energized and alert when you wake up.
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