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Forums -> Herbalism -> Bay Leaves?

Bay Leaves?
By: / Novice
Post # 1
I'm sorry if this is a weird or obvious question but um, bay leaves used for cleansing rituals, do you buy them or pick them from a tree/bush?

I looked online and it showed different trees and bushes it comes from. I could be wrong and maybe they all just kinda look the same to me.

So I looked on Amazon and Ebay and they had some organic whole ones in a bottle. I'm thinking organic is best because most natural right? No pesticides or anything done to them.

I was thinking of just picking some from the bush outside my house because honestly they just all look the same to me so thought it might be a good idea to ask how everyone else does it first instead of doing it wrong by accident.

I live in Arizona if that helps? Maybe I have a native plant here that grows them. I'm probably not looking it up right or something. I'm sorry to bother you guys with such an absurd question.

Much gratitude for your help on the matter. I truly appreciate the time given to answer a question you don't have to waste time on.
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Re: Bay Leaves?
By: / Novice
Post # 2

Bay leaves will only come from the Bay tree and they do not need to be used freshly picked.

Bay leaves are commonly used in cooking, so try going to your local suppermarket or grocery store and you may find them in the dried herb section.

There are many leaves that look similar to bay, these do not have the same properties so it is best to ensure that it is actually what you are looking for, also dried herbs tend to be the most useable, as they can be stored for longer periods of time, can be burned with loose insence and can be used in charms and mojo bags, etc, although you can dry them yourself, it is very time consuming.

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Re: Bay Leaves?
By: / Novice
Post # 3
So these for example would work just fine?

http://www.amazon.com/Simply-Organic-Certified-0-14-Ounce-Container/dp/B0012BS9F4/ref=sr_1_1_a_it?ie=UTF8&qid=1461502646&sr=8-1&keywords=Bay+Leaves

Thank you so much for your quick reply. I was talking to someone who said you could reuse them a few times?

Another thing when I looked up the cleansing ritual, it said it is preferable to use spring water or lake water? So bay leaves in a bathtub just don't work? I don't exactly have access to bodies of water like that.

In cooking you can substitute ingredients but...with magic a lot of the time it seems it needs to be done in a very specific way.

My last question being, do you need to bathe with the bay leaves daily before approaching your altar to pray to get rid of miasma?

I read that is why we are supposed to at the very least wash hands and face before approaching altar and at least clean the altar weekly.
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Re: Bay Leaves?
By: / Novice
Post # 4

I would recommend not using them more than once because they pick up the energies and intent from the spell, but I suppose if you cleansed them, then you could. I am sure that those from Amazon would be fine.

Spring water is usually better for cleansing, they can work if you are doing a cleansing bath, it is all dependant on how you create the spell. Spring water is found in bottles in supermarkets etc. That could be used.

Well rosemary can substitute any herb in magick, but the mroe specifi herb you use, potentially the more successful the casting.

I am not sure why you need to get rid of Miasma as it is the theory that Cholera (the black death) is caused by "Bad air" which has been proven a false idea, if this is what you are using this for then go seek medical advice as magick will not help you.

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Re: Bay Leaves?
By: / Novice
Post # 5
Yeah I hate drinking spring water but I could just buy it hm...that's a great idea so now I know where to get both components thanks!!

I also didn't know rosemary could be a substitute sounds like I should keep some of that on hand just in case for other things then. That's really useful advice.

Lastly, I um don't have Cholera (the black death), which from the name I am assuming is some kind of illness? I've never even heard of that but now I have something to google.

From what I read...before you start praying to your god you are suppose to cleanse yourself. Maybe I got that wrong? It said I needed bay leaves and lake/spring water for it because of miasma.

It said it's like bad energy and that mortals can never get rid of all of it but it helps. I don't want to be disrespectful when talking to my god or anything. I always do the hand and face washing right before praying as well for the same reason.

But I'm not sure if that's necessary and maybe I just read a fluffy article? Do you do this before you pray every time? Hand washing, face washing, bathing should be done daily god or no god but I mean more the bay leaf part?
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Re: Bay Leaves?
By: / Novice
Post # 6
Within Hellenic practice, miasma describes the lingering aura of uncleanliness in regards to a person or space through which contact is made with the Gods. Next to piety, being ritually clean is one of the most important things to adhere to within Hellenismos. Miasma occurs whenever the space or person comes into contact with death, sickness, birth, sex, excessive negative emotions and bodily fluids. It also comes from a lack of contact with the Hellenic Gods. As a note, I should say that not the actual acts of dying, sex and birth cause miasma but the opening up of the way to the Underworld (with births and deaths) as well as contact with sweat, blood, semen, menstrual blood and urine.
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Re: Bay Leaves?
By: / Novice
Post # 7

Cleansing both physically and spiritually is always good before cast a circle to talk to deitites, this can be done both by a shower, a cleansing shower or by sageing/cleansing yourself before casting the circle.

And yes sorry,Miasma is something to do with "bad air" and illness from what I can remember from school.

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Re: Bay Leaves?
By: / Novice
Post # 8
Ah okay, so using bay leaves daily would be good? That sounds like it would add up but I suppose if it's better.

Casting a circle, like with salt? I don't think that would be good to do on a carpeted floor.

I-I'm just gonna go google it. I don't want to waste your time with many questions. I appreciate your help very much in the matter thank you so much really.

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Re: Bay Leaves?
By: / Novice
Post # 9

A circle is cast with energy, it allow you to safely cast spells, and rituals, build up energy and have a sacred space in which you can talk to deities.

It is usually (but not always), recommended to cast a cicle before calling in a deity to your circle.

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Re: Bay Leaves?
By: / Novice
Post # 10
Yeah I'm looking it up right now but it presents a problem...

I'm supposed to get a goddess and god candle and chant about the goddess and all that but um...I only really wish to acknowledge my specific god.

As I understand it, "the god" and "the goddess" are wiccan and in wiccan you have to believe in them and so on. But pagans do not have to they can believe and do rituals for only their god specifically.

Maybe I just misunderstood...I believe more than one god exists and all but um...I only really wanted to talk to one. I'm just a one god kinda person. I mean that both as a pun as well as seriously.

http://www.thewhitegoddess.co.uk/an_introduction_to_paganism/casting_the_circle.asp
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