OF GATHERING FLOWERS, HERBS AND PLANTS:
Before cutting with the Boline, attune with the plant through visualization. Feel its energies. As you cut, say these or simular words:
O little plant of (name, such as hyssop, etc.) I ask that you give of your bounty that it may aid me in my work. Grow stronger by my stroke, stronger and more powerful, O plant of (name)!
If it is a tree, substitute the appropriate word (tree of oak). Gently cut only what you need, and never from very young plants or more than twenty-five percent of the growth. At the base of the plant leave an offering: a silver coin, a bright jewel, a bit of wine or milk, grain, a quartz crystal and so on. Cover the offering and it is done.
OF THE CIRCLE
The magick circle may be fashioned with garlands of flowers sacred to the Goddess and God. Alternately, flowers can be scattered around the perimeter of the circle.
The point stones may be ringed with fresh flowers and herbs suitable to the elements, such as:
North: corn, cypress, fern, honeysuckle, wheat, vervain
East: acacia, bergamot, clover, dandelion, lavender, lemon grass, mint, mistletoe, parsley, pine
South: basil, carnation, cedar, chrysanthemum, dill, ginger, heliotrope, holly, juniper, marigold, peppermint
West: apple blossoms, lemon balm, camellia, catnip, daffodil, elder, gardenia, grape, heather, hibiscus, jasmine, orchid
Fresh flowers may be present on the altar or, if none are available, greens such as ferns may be used.
When casting the circle around a tree, you can use the fruit, leaves, nuts or flowers of that tree to mark out the circle, if desired.
All of these can be used in addition to the cord and stones.
OF THE BALEFIRE:
If you wish to build a fire for an outdoor ritual, it can be composed of all or any combination of the following woods:
If these are unavailable, use native woods. Rites run on the seashore can be illuminated with balefires of dried driftwood collected prior to the rite.
OF THE HOME CIRCLE:
Magickal plants growing outside the home in containers can be placed around the circle or on the altar during ritual. If you primarily work indoors, choose an odd-numbered selection of sacred plants and grow these in your ritual area. If they need more sunlight, simply move them outdoors and bring inside during ritual. Give them energy and love, and they'll aid you in your worship and magick.
Though any but poisonous plants can be used, such plants as these are recommended:
African Violets Red Geraniums
Cacti (all types Rose
Ferns (all types) Rose Geranium
Hyssop Ti (Cordyline terminalis)
Palms (all types) Wax Plant (Hoya carnosa)
OF THE CELEBRANT:
Wear fresh flowers and herbs in your hair and on your body, if you prefer, during the rites. Crowns or caplets of flowers are always appropriate for spring and summer rites. Wear oak and pine during the winter rituals.
You may wish to wear a necklace of herbs and seeds, such as tonka beans, whole nutmags, star anise, acorns and other seeds and nuts, strung on a natural fiber. Strings of small pine cones may also be worn.
For Full Moon rituals held at night, wear night-blooming, fragrant flowers to suffuse yourself with Lunar energies.
OF THE TOOLS:
These are suggestions for dedicating the tools prior to their first use or formal cosecration, if any. Perform these with proper visualization and ritual intent.
The Athame or Sword:
Rub the blade with fresh basil, rosemary or oak leaves, at sunrise, outdoors where you will not be disturbed or seen. Lay the sword or Athame on the ground with its point to the South. Walk clockwise around it thrice, scattering bay leaves (perferably fresh) over it. Take up the sword or Athame, stand facing East and, holding it upward but with arms lowered, invoke the God to infuse your Athame or sword with His strength. Point it to the sky, invoking the Goddess to charge your blade with Her love and power.
Wrap your Athame or sword in red cloth and take it home. It may be stored in the cloth, if desired.
Early in the morning, go to a forest (or park, garden, or your indoor garden). Choose the most beautiful and vibrant plants. Touch the point of the Boline gently to these in turn, forging a connection between your Boline and the plants (and, thusly, the Earth).
Next, sit on the Earth. Ensuring that you are quite alone, draw a pentagram with the Boline's point on the ground. It is done.
If the wand is of wood, take it outdoors at sunset and rub it with fresh lavender, eucalyptus or mint leaves. Raise it in the air toward the East (or the Moon if it is visible) and invoke the Goddess. At sunrise, take it again outdoors, rub with the fresh fragrant leaves and invoke the God by raising it to the East.
Place the pentacle on bare Earth. Lay upon it dried parsley, patchouly, mistletoe, or fress jasmine or honeysuckle flowers. Sit before it facing North for several seconds, visualizing the pentacle absorbing the Earth's energies. Then pick it up and scatter the herbs or flowers to the four quarters, beginning and ending in the North.
If this must be done indoors, fill a small dish with fresh Earth and place the pentacle on this. Proceed as above, saving the herbs or flowers to be scattered outdoors at a latter time.
Fume pure rosemary, frankincense or copal within the censer prior to its first use. Do this for about an hour.
Take the cauldron to a stream, river, lake or ocean. Gather the leaves of some plants growing nearby (at the sea, perhaps seaweed). Dip the cauldron into the water to fill it. Place the leaves in the cauldron, then set it on the water's edge where it is on both water and sand. Place your hands on the cauldron and dedicate it to the Goddess in any words you like.
Empty and dry the cauldron, and return home. The charge has been made.
If performed inside, place the cauldron in a large basin of water or the bathtub, in a candle-lit room. Add a bit of salt to the water, which should be cold. Proceed as above.
Salt water corrodes metal. Thoroughly wash the cauldron after immersion in sea or salk water.
Anoint the base with gardenia, rose or violet oil and fill with pure spring water. Then set afloat a sprig of ivy, a small rose, a fresh gardenia or some other appropriate flower or herb. Gaze into the Chalice and invoke the Goddess to bless it. You might also wish to take it outside as night, filled with water, and catch the Moon's reflection within it.
It can be fashioned from an ash staff, birch twigs and a willow binding. Brush the broom with chamomile, willow, lemon balm, elder or mallow stalks and branches, then bury these with due solemnity. You might also wish to carve a cresent Moon upon its handle.
On the night of a Full Moon, rub the sphere with fresh (or dried) mugwort, then take it outside. Hold it up so that it drinks in the light and energies of the Moon. Gaze at the Moon through the crystal by holding it before your eyes. Repeat at least thrice yearly for the best benefits.
The Book of Shadows:
Sew into the cover of the Book of Shadows leaves of the sacred herbs vervain, rue, bay, willow or others, if you wish. They should be well-dried and secretly placed by the light of the Moon. The covers of the Book of Shadows should, of course, be covered with cloth for this purpose.
If you choose to wear one, lay it among sachets filled with lavender, vervain and cedar when not in use. Sew a bit of rosemary or frankincense into the hem while fashioning it, if desired (and if the resulting stains won't show after washing).
OF THE HERBS OF THE SABBATS:
To be used as decorations on the altar, round the circle, in the home.
Chrysanthemum, wormwood, apples, pears, hazel, thistle, pomegranates, all grains, harvested fruits and nuts, the pumpkin, corn.
Holly, mistletoe, ivy, cedar, bay, juniper, rosemary, pine. Place offerings of apples, oranges, nutmegs, lemons and whole cinnamon sticks on the Yule tree.
Snowdrop, rowan, the first flowers of the year.
Daffodil, woodruff, violet, gorse, olive, peony, iris, narcissus, all spring flowers.
Hawthorn, honeysuckle, St. John's wort, woodruff, all flowers.
Mugwort, vervain, chamomile, rose, lily, oak, lavender, ivy, yarrow, fern, elder, wild thyme, daisy, carnation.
All grains, grapes, heather, blackberries, sloe, crab apples, pears.
Hazel, corn, aspen, acorns, oak sprigs, autumn leaves, wheat stalks, cypress cones, pine cones, harvest gleanings.
OF THE HERBS AND PLANTS OF FULL MOON RITUALS:
Place upon the altar all nocturnal, white or five-petaled flowers such as the white rose, night-blooming jasmine, carnation, gardenia, cereus, lily, iris; all pleasingly-scented flowers which shall call forth the Goddess. Camphor is also symbolic.
To the Goddess:
All watery and earthy flowers and seeds such as camellia, lily, water lily, willow stalks; those flowers used in Full Moon rituals; white or purple blooms such as hyacinth, magnolia, heather and lilac; sweet-scented herbs and flowers; those dedicated to Venus or to the Moon; rue, vervain and olive; or others that seem suitable.
To the God:
All fiery amd airy herbs and flowers such as basil, chrysanthemum, snapdragon, clover, lavender, pine; strongly-scented, clean or citrusy herbs and flowers; those ruled by Mars or the Sun; yellow or red blooms such as sunflower, pine cones, seeds, cacti, thistles and stinging herbs; orange, heliotrope, cedar, juniper and so on.
OF THE SACRED HERBS OF THE GODDESSES:
Aphrodite: olive, cinnamon, daisy, cypress, quince. orris (iris), apple, myrtle
Aradia: rue, vervain
Artemis: silver fir, amaranth, cypress, cedar, hazel, myrtle, willow, daisy, mugwort, date palm
Astarte: alder, pine, cypress, myrtle, juniper
Athena: olive, apple
Bast: catnip, Vervain
Cardea: hawthorn, bean, arbutus
Ceres: willow, wheat, bay, pomegranate, poppy, leek, narcissus
Cybele: oak, myrrh, pine
Demeter: wheat, barley, pennyroyal, myrrh, rose, pomegranate, bean, poppy, all cultivated crops
Diana: birch, willow, acacia, wormwood, dittany, hazel, beech, fir, apple, mugwort, plane, mulberry, rue
Freya: cowslip, daisy, primrose, maidenhair, myrrh, strawberry, mistletoe
Hathor: myrtle, sycamore, grape, mandrake, coriander, rose
Hecate: willow, henbane, aconite, yew, mandrake, cyclamen, mint, cypress, date palm, sesame, dandelion, garlic, oak, onion
Hera: apple, willow, orris, pomegranate, myrrh
Hulda: flax, rose, hellebore, elder
Iris: wormwood, iris
Ishtar: acacia, juniper, all grains
Isis: fig, heather, wheat, wormwood, barley, myrrh, rose, palm, lotus, persea, onion, iris, vervain
Juno: lily, crocus, ashpodel, quince, pomegranate, vervain, iris, lettus, fig, mint
Kerridwen: vervain, acorns
Minerva: olive, mulberry, thistle
Nepthys: myrrh, lily
Persephone: parsley, narcissus, willow, pomegranate
Rhea: myrrh, oak
Rowen: clover, rowen
Venus: cinammon, daisy, elder, heather, anemone, apple, poppy, violet, marjoram, maidenhair fern, carnation, aster, vervain, myrtle, orchid, cedar, lily, mistletoe, pine, quince
OF THE SACRED HERBS OF THE GODS:
Adonis: myrrh, corn, rose, fennel, lettus, white heather
Aescalapius: bay, mustard
Apollo: leek, hyacinth, heliotrope, cornel, bay, frankincense, date palm, cypress
Attis: pine, almond
Bacchus: grape, ivy, fig, beech, tamarisk
Baldur: St. John's wort, daisy
Bran: alder, all grains
Cupid: cypress, sugar, white violet, red rose
Dionysus: fig, apple, ivy, grape, pine, corn, pomegranate, toadstools, mushrooms, fennel, all wild and cultivated trees
Eros: red rose
Horus: horehound, lotus, persea
Jove: pine, cassia, houseleek, carnation, cypress
Jupiter: aloe, agrimony, sage, oak, mullein, acorn, beech, cypress, houseleek, date palm, violet, gorse, ox-eye daisy, vervain
Kernunnos: heliotrope, bay, sunflower, oak, orange
Mars: ash, aloe, dogwood, buttercup, witch grass, vervain
Mercury: cinnamon, mulberry, hazel, willow
Mithras: cypress, violet
Neptune: ash, bladderwrack, all seaweeds
Odin: mistletoe, elm, yew, oak
Osiris: acacia, grape, ivy, tamarisk, cedar, clover, date palm, all grains
Pan: fig, pine, reed, oak, fern, all meadow flowers
Pluto: cypress, mint, pomegranate
Poseidon: pine, ash, fig, bladderwack, all seaweeds
Ra: acacia, frankincense, myrrh, olive
Saturn: fig, blackberry
Tammuz: wheat, pomegranate, all grains
Thor: thistle, houseleek, vervain, hazel, ash, birch, rowen, oak, pomegranate, burdock, beech
Zeus: oak, olive, pine, aloe, parsley, sage, wheat, fig
As the Craft, we will take only that which we need from the green and growing things of the Earth, never failing to attune with the plant before harvesting, nor failing to leave a token of gratitude and respect.