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Salcia conine salicina, o substan asemntoare acidului acetil salicilic care se gsete n aspirin.

Lemnul de salcie este de calitate inferioar el neputnd fi utilizat nici mcar ca lemn de foc din cauza faptului ca nu arde ci doar fumeg. Spre deosebire de genul nrudit populus (plopul), lemnul de salcie nu poate fi folosit la confecionarea beelor de chibrituri. Una din cele mai cunoscute specii de salcie este Salix babylonica, aa numita "salcie plngtoare" ale crei ramuri atrn de trunchi, folosit n parcuri i grdini ca plant ornamental. Din nuielele de rchit (mai ales din rchita roie (Salix purpurea) se mpletesc couri i papornie. Pe malul drept al Prahovei, la km 128.5, se afl o rchit (Salix fragilis L.) de aproximativ 200 de ani. Dupa un obicei stravechi, mentionat chiar in sec. al IV lea de catre pelerina Egeria si generalizat in toata Biserica crestina, in Duminica Floriilor se aduc in biserici ramuri de salcie. Acestea sunt binecuvantate si impartite credinciosilor, in amintirea ramurilor de finic si de maslin, cu care multimile au intampinat pe Hristos la intrarea Sa in Ierusalim. Noi le purtam in maini ca semn al biruintei impotriva mortii. Avand in vedere ca noi mergem in Duminica Floriilor cu ramuri de salcie si nu de finic, exista credinta ca Biserica a adoptat anumite simboluri care nu au temei scripturistic. Astfel, cei care impartasesc aceasta credinta, sustin ca s-a diminuat semnificatia religioasa. Daca analizam rolul salciei in istorie, vom putea observa ca i s-au atribuit diverse calitati magice. Prof. Dr. Remus Rus are un articol amanuntit despre interpretarile care apar atat in credinta pre-crestina, cat si in mitologiile antice sau in invataturile Bibliei. Voi reda cateva idei pe care le-am intalnit in acest articol. Salcia - simbol al fecioriei De Thesmophoria, o sarbatoare legata de cultul lui Demeter si Core, femeile isi faceau un pat din ramuri de salcie pe care stateau in tot timpul sarbatorii. Salcia fiind considerata un copac ce-si distruge rodul (ea isi leapada florile inainte ca rodul sa se lege), actul pe care il faceau femeile in acea zi putea fi tradus ca o daruire spre o viata de castitate. Au fost si persoane care au vazut in sederea femeilor pe acel pat o promovare a fertilitatii, de vreme ce patul era asezat pe pamant, iar pamantul era simbolul sacru al zeitelor mame. Salcia - planta menita sa asigure steriliatea Avand in vedere ca salcia este un copac distrugator de rod, era considerata ca fiind planta ce asigura sterilitatea. In textele antice intalnim in acest sens, afirmatii de genul: "luati flori de salcie, frecati-le in apa si beti amestecul. Acesta va suprima orice pofta amoroasa si va face pe femei sterile" . Salcia in Vechiul Testament In Vechiul Testament salcia este intalnita pentru prima data in timpul sarbatorii corturilor, sarbatoare care aminteste de eliberarea evreilor din Egipt: "In ziua intai sa luati ramuri de copaci frumosi, ramuri de finici, ramuri de copaci cu frunze late si salcii de rau si sa va veseliti inaintea Domnului Dumnezeului vostru..." (Levitic 23, 40). In cadrul acestei sarbatori salcia este un simbol al bucuriei si al vietii. Insa, in Psalmul 136, in care este descrisa disperarea evreilor aflati in robia babilonica : "La raul Babilonului, acolo am sezut si am plans, cand ne-am adus aminte de Sion. In salcii, in mijlocul lor, am atarnat harpele noastre" (1-2), salcia devine aici simbolul neputintei si al disperarii. Astfel, si in Vechiul Testament salcia isi pastreaza dualismul ei simbolic : viata si moarte. Salcia in crestinism (Floriile)

In gandirea crestina, simbolismul salciei este intalnit pentru prima data in scrierile Pastorului Hermas. Aici martirii sunt numiti "ramuri de salcie purtatoare de rod" ale copacului divin, care este Hristos. Cu alte cuvinte cei ce si-au daruit viata lui Hristos, nu au ramas in moarte, ci au biruit-o prin Hristos. Salcia, in scrierile unor Sfinti Parinti, o reprezinta pe Fecioara Maria. Aceasta desi alege fecioria, deci viata fara rod, naste pe Hristos. In concluzie, trebuie sa intelegem ca folosirea salciei in cult nu este expresia acomodarii Bisericii la mediu. Dimpotriva, folosirea salciei in cult isi are bogatia sa in viata rituala a Bisericii. Salcia in credinta populara In popor exista credinta ca cei care nu pot ajunge la biserica, in special din motive de sanatate, trebuie sa fie loviti cu aceste ramuri de salcie binecuvantate, strigandu-se in mod repetat: "Iesi, boala, intoarce-te sanatate!". Apoi sa se cante: "Nu sunt eu cel ce te loveste/ Ramura de salcie te loveste / Nu tu esti in suferinta / Ramura este cea care sufera / In curnd va fi Pastele". Modul in care aceasta ramura de salcie se pastreaza in gospodarie, este diferit de la o zona la alta. In Moldova si in Bucovina exista credinta ca salcia nu trebuie adusa in casa. Ea se pune intotdeauna afara, la streasina casei. Dimpotriva, in Muntenia si Oltenia, ramurele de salcie se pun la icoane. In literatura folclorica romaneasca exista multe legende despre salcie. In una din ele se spune ca Fecioara Maria, auzind de Rastignirea lui Hristos, a plecat sa-L caute. Ajungand la malul unui rau s-a rugat de broasca sa o treaca dincolo, dar aceasta nu a vrut spunandu-i ca si ea a avut trei copii care au fost omorati de roata unei carute si nu a mai plans dupa ei. Fecioara a blestemat-o sa se usuce, dar sa nu putrezeasca niciodata. Asa a ajuns la salcie, cea care si-a facut ramurile punte pentru a o ajuta pe Fecioara sa treaca raul. Fecioara a binecuvantat-o, ca niciodata sa nu arda, sa rodeasca si sa se inmulteasca oriunde s-ar aseza. Scoarta de salcie este considerat cel mai important adjuvant in tratarea reumatismului. In jurul anilor 1800, egiptologul german Georg Ebers a cumparat citeva papirusuri de la un vinzator egiptean stradal. Papirusurile contineau o colectie de 877 de retete medicinale egiptene din 2500 IC si care recomandau o infuzie de frunze uscate de mirt si salcie pentru reumatisme si dureri de spate. Chiar si in 400 IC Hippocrate din Kos recomanda un ceai din extract de coaja de salcie pentru febra, dureri si reumatisme. Substanta activa din acest ceai, care usureaza durerea, este acidul salicilic, denumire sub care este cunoscuta astazi. In China si Asia, si printre indienii nord-americani si hotentotii din Africa de Sud efectele benefice ale plantelor ce contineau acid salicilic erau cunoscute din cele mai vechi timpuri. Salcia este inconjurata de un farmec misterios, specific doar ei. Aerul sau romantic dau acestui copac un aer de mister si intristare. Dar, desi pare neajutorata salcia este un arbore robust. Copac cu ramuri subtiri si elastice, scoarta de salcie este considerat cel mai important adjuvant in tratarea reumatismului. Se poate folosi si rachita sau rachita rosie cu aceleasi proprietati ca si ale salciei. Din scoarta ramurilor, recoltate in lunile martie si aprilie, se prepara infuzii, decocturi sau cataplasme. Produsul obtinut in urma uscarii scoartei are proprietati antireumatice, combate febra si este sedativ nervos. De asemenea taninurile pe care le contine au actiune tonica fiind astringenta, coagulanta si usor homeostatica. Salcia este recomandata in afectiuni reumatismale, nevralgii, raceala, insomnii, guta, ulceratii cutanate, hemoragii hemoroidale fiind cicatrizant.

Scoarta de salcie poate fi folosita sub forma de infuzie sau decoct cu efecte astringent, antifebril si antireumatic preparindu-se din 250 ml apa clocotita la 2 linguri planta. Se poate administra cite 2-3 linguri pe zi sau sub forma de pulbere 2-3 g pe zi intre mesele de baza. Extern, coaja de salcie se poate folosi in bai sau sub forma de comprese. Se poate prepara un decoct din 150 g planta la un litru de apa. Se filtreaza lichidul si se adauga in apa din baie calda pina la 35oC.
Salix alba Fam. Salicaceae. Denumiri populare: lozie, rachita, rachita alba, rachita de lunca, rachita mare, ratita, salca, salsi, salcuta. In traditia populara: are lemnul usor si moale, intrebuintat la diferite obiecte casnice. Ramurile, taiate periodic sunt folosite pentru ingradituri, etc. Coaja ramurilor s-a folosit pentru vopsit in galben ca si a altor specii inrudite. Frunzele si coaja se foloseau pentru friguri. Se fierbeau si din acest decoct se lua pe nemancate, inainte de crize. Contra afectiunilor splinei, se fierbea in vin coaja de salcie, bine pisata si se bea in 3 dimineti pe nemancate. Frunza se fierbea in otet si cu decoctul acesta se clateau pe gura cei care le mirosea gura. Cu aceasta se mai faceau bai la picioare, seara si dimineata, contra paduchilor. Frunzele si coaja se puneau in bai contra reumatismului. Lujerii tineri, dospiti in tuica, se dadeau contra durerilor de stomac. Se mai foloseau in legaturi la galci. Variate intrebuintari au avut si matisorii. Se pastrau peste an si se foloseau ca leac contra galcilor, frigurilor, durerilor de gat. Compozitie chimica: medicinal se recolteaza scoarta ramurilor recoltata in martie- aprilie. Coaja- taninuri mixte, salicozida, salicina, papulozida, salirepozida, saligenol, piceosida, ceara, rezine, flavonozide, oxalati. Ametii contin substante estrogene. Salicozida prin hidroliza da saligenina sau alcool salicilicsi glucoza. In 1973 doctorul Stone combate febra cu coaja de salcie. De aici a inceput lungul drum al aspirinei care s-a nascut atunci. In 1893, Felix Hofman de la firma Bayer din Leverkusen, reuseste sa produca prin sinteza aspirina, care este si astazi utila. Ca o curiozitate Dl. Emanoil Grigorescu spune ca in 1963 s- a fabricat in S.U.A. 13.000 de Tone, dar in intreaga lume? Vi se pare mult ? Dar putini stiu ce efecte negative a avut asupra celor care o folosesc si are si azi. Cea din coaja de salcie nu are nici pe departe atatea efecte negative. Actiune farmaceutica: datorita salicozidei, populozidei si celorlalte heterozide salicilice este: astringent, antitermic, analgetic reumatismal, hemostatic, sedativ, vasodilatator cutanat, sudorific, stimuleaza circulatia sangelui, cicatrizeaza ranile, vasodilatatoare cutanata, analgezica, opreste secretia lactica la intarcare, febrifuga, anafrodiziaca, tonic, sedativ nervos. Extern: cicatrizant, hemostatic. Opreste transpiratia picioarelor. Intra in compozitia ceaiului antireumatic. Se poate folosi la urmatoarele afectiuni: afte bucale, alopecie, circulatie periferica deficitara, congestii, diaree, dureri diferite, gripa, guta, guturai, halena, hemoragii hemoroidale, hiperhidroza palmo-plantara, hiperexcitatie sexuala, infectii diverse, inflamatii, insomnii, leucoree, menstre dureroase, nevralgii, raceala, reumatism, rinita cronica si acuta, sangerari menstruale puternice, spondilita anchilozanta, transpiratie excesiva a picioarelor, tristete, tuberculoza cu hemoptizie, tulburari hormonale (endocrine) la pubertate, ulceratii cutanate chiar infectate, varice.

Preparare: intern- 2 lingurite de coaja maruntita se va pune la 200 ml apa rece, se fierbe apoi 20-30 minute. Se strecoara si se va lua cate 3-4 linguri pe zi. -Se va transforma coaja in praf fin. Se va cerne. Se ia cate un varf de cutit odata la afectiunile de mai sus. -Ameti de salcie maruntiti dupa uscare se vor pune o lingurita in 250 ml apa clocotita. Se vor lua 3 ceaiuri pe zi din acesta in tulburarile endocrine. -50 g de coaja maruntita se va pune in 250 ml alcool alimentar de 70?. Se va tine timp de 15 zile, dupa care se strecoara. Se va folosi cate 10-20 picaturi sau chiar o lingurita de trei ori pe zi pentru tratament sau se foloseste doar la nevoie in cazul durerilor. Extern: 3 lingurite de planta se va pune la fiert in 250 ml apa pentru 15-20 minute. Se strecoara apoi se va folosi la comprese, bai sau bai de sezut, pentru afectiunile respective (hemoroizi, etc). -Praf de coaja se pune in pantofi pentru oprirea transpiratiei. Se poate amesteca cu praf de coaja de stejar. Se combina cu aceste plante si se fac bai cu acestea sau doar cu salvie.

-Pus in otet se foloseste contra bataturilor, durerilor sau altor afectiuni ca negi, pete, etc. Atentie! nu se depaseste doza pentru ca poate produce intoxicatii.

Zodia Salcie
Nativul din zodia Salcie este deosebit de stragator, dar foarte melancolic. Ii place tot ce este frumos si are un bun gust remarcabil. Este corect si are o intuitie excelenta. Inca din tinerete, il atrag foarte mult calatoriile. Este flexibil si adaptabil. Este pragmatic si reuseste sa isi pastreze calmul in situatii dificile, cand toti sunt agitati. In relatiile cu ceilalti, nativul din zodia Salcie este foarte tolerant si reuseste sa inteleaga punctele de vedere ale tuturor. Pe de alta parte, poate fi capricios si greu de multumit. Pana se aseaza la casa lui, poate suferi mai multe deziluzii sentimentale. Salcia , cu denumirea stiintifica de Salix spp. , din familia Salicaceae , poreclita copacul incantarii sau copacul suspinului , cuprinde peste 500 de specii.In traditia occidentala , salcia este un simbol al jalei, doliului si dragostei nefericite.Numele latin al salciei plangatoare se refera la psalmul in care evreii isi deplangeau , la adapostul salciilor , soarta captivitatii in Babilon . Salcia legende, mituri, simboluri Salcia este asociata cu elementul apei, cu luna si zeitatile Artemis , Hecate , Ceres , Hera , Persephone , Circe , Mercur , Belili si Belenos.Salcia simbolizeza moartea , feminitatea , iubirea si vindecarea. Ea este un arbore al visarii, intuitiei si sentimentelor profunde. In mod traditional , salcia este asociata cu inceperea primaverii , atunci cand viata porneste sa se trezeasca in adancurile Fiintei si isi face aparitia in muguri si plantele fragede. Intr-o legenda crestina , salcia plangatoare si-a capatat forma-i caracteristica din vinovatia si rusinea resimtita fata de folosirea ramurilor ei pentru lovirea si chinuirea lui Isus de catre soldatii romani ai lui Pilat. Intr-o varianta populara romaneasca , in versuri, a legendei salciei pletoase , desi ramurile nu ii sunt folosite pentru a-l tortura pe Isus , salcia isi pleaca , totusi, crengile , plangandu-l pe Mantuitor Langa o salcie pletoasa Maica Sfanta se ruga, Si cu vocea ei miloasa Catre salcie graia : Daca imi cunosti durerea Si voiesti sa mi-o alini , Da-mi din ramurile tale O cununa fara spini . Fiul meu e sus pe cruce, Insangerat sin mare chin Si cu ea la El m-oi duce Durerea sa I-o alin . Atunci salcia nalta Catre Maica se-apleca Maica I-a facut cununa Si s-a dus la Golgota. Dar , iudeii n-o lasara

Cu-o cununa fara spini Si voia ca El sa moara Insangerat si-n mare chin . De-atunci salcia nalta Nu s-a mai uitat n sus Si-a ramas asa plecata Ca sa-L planga pe Iisus. De altfel, ramurile de salcie, sfintite in biserica, reprezinta o traditie respectata de crestinii ortodocsi cu ocazia sarbatorilor Floriilor. Sarbatorirea primaverii timpurii din traditia Wicca sau a religiei neopagane , numita Imbolc, Oimelc sau Imolg , reprezinta unul din cele doua mari festivaluri ale focului feminin .Imbolc este celebrat in luna februarie si este , asemeni salciei, sacru pentru zeita Brigit, Brigantia, sau Mireasa , fiind aspectul de fata / virgina al triplei zeite. In credinta Wicca , adastarea , cat mai mult timp , in compania salciilor , folosirea lemnului lor pentru faurirea unui talisman sau o bagheta magica ( a lunii) sau utilizarea salciilor ca remedii de vindecare naturala , ne poate potenta intelegerea naturii noastre feminine. Stravechii celti foloseau un alfabet al arborilor , in care fiecarui copac i se atribuia un rol in cadrul rotii anului , specifica sistemului lor astrologic.Asociatiile magice celtice ale salciei cuprind dragostea romantica , vindecarea , protectia , fertilitatea si misterioasa putere a femeii.Sub acest aspect, luna salciei era considerata luna vrajitoarelor sau luna echilibrului. Druizii respectau salcia si o vedeau drept sacra , intrucat , in credinta lor, ea era un arbore primordial , in ramurile caruia fusesera tainuite doua oua stacojii , continand soarele si luna.Salcia a protejat cele doua oua pana cand acestea au fost clocite indeajuns.Din aceasta perspectiva , salcia este asociata cu arborele vietii sau creatiei.Totodata , celtii considerau ca viata este strans conectata cu acest copac, intrucat credeau ca viata este localizata in sira spinarii , formata , conform unor legende , din trunchiul unei salcii. Povestea salciei albastre , de sorginte chinezeasca , istoriseste despre o frumoasa fata , numita Koong-shee, si iubitul ei , Chang , a caror dragoste s-a infiripat sub ramurile unei salcii.Tatal fetei dezaproba legatura ei cu Chang , fiindca acesta nu era de vita nobila , astfel incat si-a trimis slujitorii sa il asasineze .Martora la uciderea iubitului ei , Koong-shee s-a sinucis. Legenda spune ca zeilor le-a fost mila de cei doi indragostiti si le-au transformat sufletele in nemuritoare pasari ale dragostei , care colinda cerurile fara a se desparti vreodata. O alta legenda , de origine engleza (dupa unii , poloneza) , porneste de la denumirea populara pentru Salix discolor , aceea de salcia pisicii (pussywillow).Potrivit povestii, pisica unui taran adusese pe lume , intr-o primavara , o gramada de pui , atat de multi incat mama nu avea cum sa ii hraneasca pe toti. Taranul s-a hotarat sa arunce pisoii intr-un rau , iar mama-pisica a alergat la malul apei pentru a-si salva progeniturile.Ea nu era , totusi, indeajuns de puternica pentru a-i scapa pe toti de la inec , asa ca a inceput sa se tanguie amarnic , mieunatul ei fiind insotit de cel al puilor care se luptau cu valurile.Salciile de pe mal au auzit aceste strigate de disperare , asa ca si-au intins crengile peste ape si i-au salvat pe micutii pisoi.Fiecare primavara ne aduce aminte de aceasta fapta , asezand matisorii in ramurile fragede ale salciilor. Salcia plangatoare este asociata si cu unul din marile mituri ale lumii , cel al Sfantului Graal.In aceasta legenda , o tanara fata si logodnicul ei si-au jurat dragoste eterna , ascunsi de crengile unei salcii. Cei doi au fost fericiti luni de-a randul , dar tanarul, visand la glorie si la o mai mare pretuire din partea iubitei, a pornit in cautarea Sfantului Graal , care , odata baut , putea aduce darul nemuririi.Tanarul barbat a jurat ca nu se va intoarce pana ce nu va ajunge in stapanirea pretiosului lucru , iar fata a promis ca il va astepta , credincioasa , pana cand el va reveni , astfel incat sa bea amandoi din cupa imortalitatii.Vremea a trecut, nemiloasa, iar fata venea in fiecare noapte sub ramurile salciei, plangand de dor si iubire.In cele din urma ,

lacrimile si durerea i-au provocat moartea.Salcia, martora la tot ceea ce se intamplase , plina de compatimire fata de tanara femeie, a absorbit spiritul si lacrimile fetei, astfel incat frumusetea si dragostea ei sa dainuie pentru vecie.In acest fel , salcia a putut simti adevarata intensitate a durerii si afectiunii fetei , asa incat s-a aplecat si si-a lasat ramurile sa coboare , pentru a proteja locul unde cei doi tineri isi facusera legamantul de iubire.Din aceasta cauza, se spune , salcia plange si isi lasa sa atarne crengile, in semn de suferinta si onorare a pamantului de sub ea. O legenda japoneza a salciei pletoase se refera , nici mai mult , nici mai putin , la artele martiale , respectiv la scoala Yoshin Ryu (coala inimii de salcie).
Legenda salciei pletoase
O legend transmis oral povesteste despre un medic japonez, Akiyama, ce locuia n Nagasaki. Pentru a nvta noi tehnici de medicin s-a hotrt s mearg n China. Pe durata sederii sale a nvaat o art marial numit hakuda care folosea att lovituri cu piciorul ct i cu pumnul, dar i apucri sau cuprinderi cu braele. Pe lng acestea i-a nsuit 28 de posibiliti de a salva un om de la moarte aparent. La ntoarcerea n Japonia, Akiyama s-a hotrt s predea arta sa unor elevi selectionai cu mare grij, dar puinele tehnici pe care le cunostea, au fcut ca elevii lui s-l prsesc. Suprat, doctorul a plecat la templul Tenjin unde a meditat timp de 100 de zile. n acest rstimp Akiyama a fost profund impresionat de ruperea unui pin nalt din pdure, copleit de greutatea zpezii, n urma unui viscol puternic. Cu toate acestea, o salcie care se gsea n apropiere s-a plecat sub greutatea zpezii abundente, lsnd zpada s cad de pe ramuri, revenind la poziia initial. Doctorul a nteles lecia i a folosit-o n arta nvat n China, descoperind 303 metode diferite ale artei respective. Ca urmare i-a deschis o alt coal care a avut un mare succes i a numit-o Yoshin Ryu (coala inimii de salcie).

Salcia era utilizata in incheierea unor pacturi de prietenie si alianta dar si in atragerea dragostei , prin dispunerea in mici saculeti a frunzelor ei magice.Combinata cu santalul , salcia era folosita pentru invocarea spiritelor , iar atunci cand ramurile ii erau tinute in casa , se spunea ca locuinta va fi ferita de vraji si spirite rele.Purtat asupra cuiva , lemnul de salcie avea darul de a proteja impotriva temerii de moarte .Daca cineva era apasat de o taina pe care nu o putea destainui nimanui, el trebuia sa se confese unei salcii , usurandu-si astfel sufletul si incredintandu-se ca secretul nu va fi descoperit lumii. Daca cineva voia sa afle de se va casatori , trebuia sa arunce , in ajunul Anului Nou , cu un pantof sau o cizma intr-o salcie , de noua ori ; daca una dintre aceste aruncari nimerea salcia , urma sa se cununa in decursul anului ce urmator. In magie sau vrajitorie , bagheta creata dintr-o ramura de salcie contine toate calitatile acestui arbore , la care se pot adauga , unele caracteristici , legate de uzul ei personal.Baghetele sau nuielele din salcie sunt utilizate ori de cate ori este nevoie de o conectare cu intuitia , visurile , viziunile , sau poezia , ori cand avem de a face cu o imobilizare emotionala sau un exces sentimental , ori cu simtaminte negative care trebuiesc inlaturate. Talismanele executate din lemn de salcie , purtate la gat , ca o brosa , sau in interiorul unei mici pungi , pot fi sculptate magic cu simboluri relevante pentru intrebuintarea lor. Zodia salciei Observatorul 15 aprilie 12 mai - Personalitatea salciei Daca esti nascut sub semnul salciei, inseamna ca esti guvernat de Luna , astfel incat personalitatea iti este marcata de aspectele mistice ale taramului selenar.Din aceasta cauza , ai o fire foarte creatoare, intuitiva (poti avea chiar abilitati de medium) si inteligenta.Posezi o intelegere profunda a ciclurilor vietii si esti constient ca fiecare situatie isi are un sezon sau o vreme aparte.Acest lucru iti ofera o perspectiva realista asupra vietii si te face sa fii cel mai rabdator semn zodiacal arboricol.Inteligenta iti este insotita de o abilitate naturala de a imbiba cunoasterea si iti poti impresiona adesea compania cu capacitatea ta de a memora subiecte din diverse domenii.

Nativii din semnul astrologic al salciei sunt incarcati de un foarte mare potential, dar au tendinta de a si pastra in sine creativitatea , pentru a nu apare ca laudarosi sau plini de sine.In mod fundamental, puterea perceptiei este cea care aduce la stralucire adevarata natura a salciei si o conduce catre succesul in viata. Nativii din zodia salciei sunt compatibili mai ales cu cei din zodia mesteacanului sau iederei. - Polaritatea salciei : feminina . - Culoarea zodiei salciei : o culoarea stralucitoare. - Litera caracteristica : S. - Luna : februarie. - Alias: Luna vrajitoarelor sau luna echilibrului. - Proprietati magice : iubire romantica , vindecare , protectie, fertilitate, magie feminina. - Personalitati nascute in zodia salciei : Charlotte Bronte, George Clooney, Sigmund Freud, Karl Marx, Conan O'Brien, Jerry Seinfeld, William Shakespeare, Uma Thurman si Leonardo da Vinci.

Simboluri crestine ale plantelor si copacilor vineri, 8 mai 2009

Simbolurile crestine ale plantelor si copacilor


Definirea si intelesul unor simboluri sau imagini din perioada crestina timpurie Insemnele sau o reprezentarile grafice crestine , catolice , referitoare la plante si copaci , la caracteristici , forme sau culori legate de acestia , erau folosite pentru a ilustra idei sau concepte abstracte , simbolizand aspecte sacre ale religiei.Semnificatia , originile si traditiile legate de crestinism ale acestor simboluri dateaza din vremuri stravechi , cand cei mai multi dintre oameni nu erau capabili sa citeasca sau sa scrie , iar tiparirea cartilor nu fusese inca inventata.Multe dintre aceste credinte au fost preluate sau "imprumutate" din traditiile antice precrestine. BRAD - Copac simbolizand rabdarea , asteptarea intru credinta. CASTAN - Arborele de castan este un simbol crestin al castitatii. CEDRUL DIN LIBAN - Simbol reprezentandu-l pe Cristos. CHIPAROS - Simbol crestin al mortii. CICLAMEN - Un simbol al fecioarei Maria. FERIGA - Plantele de feriga sunt un simbol al smereniei. IEDERA - Reprezentare a credintei si a vietii eterne. ILICE - Plante reprezentand coroana/ cununa suferintei lui Cristos si patimile Sale.

ISOP - Simbol al penitentei , smereniei si botezului. LAMAI - Fidelitatea iubirii / credinta in dragoste. LAUR - Victorie , triumf sau eternitate. MASLIN - Simbol al pacii , armoniei. MIGDAL - Arborele de migdal simbolizeaza acordul / confirmarea divin(a). PALMIER - Copac simbolizand victoria. PORTOCAL - Reprezentare a a puritatii , catitatii si generozitatii. SALCAM - Salcamul simbolizeaza puritatea Fecioarei Maria. SALCIA - Simbol al Evangheliei. SMOCHIN - Simbol al dorintei fizice si al fertilitatii. STRUGURI (Vita de vie) - Simbol al sangelui lui Cristos. TRESTIA - Trestia simbolizeaza credinta si umilinta / smerenia crestina.Simbol al al smereniei si al patimilor lui Cristos. TRIFOI - Planta de trifoi este un simbol al trinitatii. ULM - Copacul de ulm simbolizeaza demnitatea si credinta.

Tanacetum parthenium and Salix alba (Mig-RL) combination in migraine prophylaxis: a prospective, open-label study.
Shrivastava R, Pechadre JC, John GW.

Source
Naturveda - Vitro-Bio Research Institute, ZAC de Lavaur, Issoire, France.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:
Tanacetum parthenium (feverfew) has been used traditionally to treat migraine, and although its mechanism of action is not fully understood, serotonin 5-HT receptor blocking effects have been suggested. T. parthenium and Salix alba (white willow) either alone or in combination (Mig-RL) were recently shown to inhibit binding to 5HT(2A/2C) receptors; T. parthenium failed to recognise 5-HT(1D) receptors, whereas S. alba or the

combination did. It was hypothesised that S. alba in combination with T. parthenium may provide superior migraine prophylactic activity compared with T. parthenium alone.

METHODS:
A prospective, open-label study was performed in 12 patients diagnosed with migraine without aura. Twelve weeks' treatment with T. parthenium 300 mg plus S. alba 300 mg (Mig-RL) twice daily was administered to determine the effects of therapy on migraine attack frequency (primary efficacy criterion), intensity and duration (secondary efficacy criteria), and quality of life, together with tolerability for patients.

RESULTS:
Attack frequency was reduced by 57.2% at 6 weeks (p < 0.029) and by 61.7% at 12 weeks (p < 0.025) in nine of ten patients, with 70% patients having a reduction of at least 50%. Attack intensity was reduced by 38.7% at 6 weeks (p < 0.005) and by 62.6% at 12 weeks (p < 0.004) in ten of ten patients, with 70% of patients having a reduction of at least 50%. Attack duration decreased by 67.2% at 6 weeks (p < 0.001) and by 76.2% at 12 weeks (p < 0.001) in ten of ten patients. Two patients were excluded for reasons unrelated to treatment. Self-assessed general health, physical performance, memory and anxiety also improved by the end of the study. Mig-RL treatment was well tolerated and no adverse events occurred.

CONCLUSION:
The remarkable efficacy of Mig-RL in not only reducing the frequency of migraine attacks but also their pain intensity and duration in this trial warrants further investigation of this therapy in a double-blind, randomised, placebo-controlled investigation involving a larger patient population.

What is white willow bark?


Other Names: Salix alba, white willow, willow bark White willow bark is a tree native to Europe and Asia. The name "white willow" comes from the color of the leaves, which are covered with fine white hairs. The use of white willow bark medicinally goes far back. Ancient Egyptians used white willow for inflammation. The Greek physician Hippocrates wrote about white willow's medicinal uses in 5th century B.C. In 1829, scientists in Europe identified what was believed to be the active ingredient in white willow barka compound called salicin. Public demand grew rapidly. Extracting salicin from herbs was considered to be expensive and time-consuming, so a synthetic salicylic acid version was developed in Germany in 1852 and quickly became the treatment of choice (salicin is converted in the body to salicylic acid). The problem was that it was harder on the stomach. At therapeutic doses, people using the synthetic salicyclic acid developed stomach ulcers and bleeding. The German company Bayer eventually created a synthetic, less harsh derivative of salicylic acid, called acetylsalicylic acid (ASA), and mass-produced it under the name aspirin. Despite this, aspirin is still known for irritating the stomach lining.

Why do people use white willow bark?


White willow bark is used for conditions that cause pain, inflammation, or fever, such as:

Acute back pain Fever Flu Joint pain Osteoarthritis Pain

People take white willow bark instead of aspirin because it does not appear to be as irritating to the stomach lining. It may be because the salicin found naturally in white willow bark is only converted to the acid form after it is absorbed by the stomach. Researchers have also suggested that white willow bark is more effective than aspirin because of other active compounds that are found in the bark but not the drug. Animal research at Cairo University compared a willow bark extract to ASA and found that a willow bark extract was as effective as aspirin in reducing inflammation, even though the salicin content was lower than an equivalent dose of ASA.

What research has been done on white willow bark?

In a German study, the effectiveness of a willow bark extract providing 240 mg of salicin a day was compared to placebo in a 2-week randomized controlled trial in 78 people with osteoarthritis. After two weeks, the willow bark patients' pain scores were reduced by 14% compared to the placebo group, which had a 2% increase in pain scores. A randomized controlled trial published in the American Journal of Medicine examined the use of 120 mg or 240 mg salicin or placebo in 210 patients with an low back pain. In the fourth and final week of the study, 39% of the group taking 240 mg salicin were pain-free for at least 5 days, compared to 21% in the 120 mg group and only 6% in the placebo group. Two randomized controlled 6-week trials investigated the effectiveness and safety of willow bark in 127 patients with hip and/or knee osteoarthritis and 26 patients with rheumatoid arthritis. In the osteoarthritis trial, patients received either willow bark providing 240 mg of salicin a day, 100 mg a day of the drug diclofenac, or a placebo. Patients in the rheumatoid arthritis trial received either willow bark or a placebo. The results found that the drug diclofenac was more effective than placebo in osteoarthritis patients but white willow bark was not. In rheumatoid arthritis patients, willow bark wasn't found to be more effective than placebo.

Common Doses
Studies have used white willow bark extracts that provide 120 mg to 240 mg of salicin per day.

Safety
Because white willow bark contains salicylates, the same precautions as aspirin should be taken until research has shown otherwise. The following people should not take white willow bark:

People with an aspirin allergy or sensitivity. There has been a published report of a 25 year old woman who was admitted to emergency with anaphylaxis after taking 2 capsules of a weight loss supplement that contained willow bark. The patient had a history of allergy to acetylsalicylic acid. No other possible causes for anaphylaxis were identified in that patient. People with peptic ulcer disease or kidney disease. The herbs ginkgo, vitamin E, and garlic may increase the risk of bleeding if combined with white willow. People with hyperuricemia, gout, and asthma.

Children and teenagers, especially with flu-like symptoms, chicken pox, or Reye's syndrome. Pregnant or nursing women.

White willow bark should be avoided two weeks before or after surgery.

Possible drug interactions


This is a list of drugs that may interact with willow.

Bismuth Subsalicylates:
Bismuth subsalicylates (e.g. Pepto-Bismol, Bismatrol, Maalox Total Stomach Relief) are used to treat symptoms of diarrhea, heartburn, nausea, acid indigestion, prevent traveler's diarrhea, and treat ulcers. They should not be taken with white willow bark due to an increased risk of salicylate toxicity.

Carbonic Anhydrase Inhibitors:


e.g. Acetazolamide (e.g. Diamox), Dichlorphenamide, Methazolamide Carbonic anhydrase inhibitors are used to treat glaucoma, epileptic seizures, fluid retention, and altitude sickness. These drugs should not be used with white willow, which contains salicylates, due to an increased risk of salicylate toxicity.

Cox-2 Selective Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDS) :


e.g. Celecoxib (Celebrex), Valdecoxib(Bextra) Cox-2 Inhibitors are used to treat rheumatoid arthritis symptoms, pain, fever, and inflammation, dysmenorrhea, and colorectal polyps. No interactions with white willow bark have been reported at the time of writing. However, until we have further research on the safety of white willow bark, they should not be combined because Cox-2 inhibitors are not recommended with aspirin due to an increased risk of stomach ulcers.

Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDS):


e.g. Aspirin, Ibuprofen(e.g. Motrin, Advil) Naproxen (Naprosyn, Aleve), Diclofenac (Voltaren), Indomethacin (Indocin), Etodolac (Lodine), Ketorolac (Toradol), Piroxicam (Feldene), Sulindac (Clinoril), Nabumetone (Relafen), Salsalate (e.g. Amigesic) Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs combined with white willow bark may increase the risk of stomach ulcers.

Metoclopramide:
Metoclopramide (e.g. Reglan) is used to reduce nausea and vomiting and reduce symptoms of esophagitis and stomach swelling in people with diabetes. Because it can increase the absorption of aspirin, it might also increase the absorption of white willow bark.

Methotrexate:
Methotrexate (e.g. Rheumatrex) is used to treat some types of cancer, to treat severe psoriasis, and to treat severe rheumatoid arthritis. Because it is not recommended that people combine methotrexate and aspirin (which also contains salicylates), the drug should not be taken with white willow.

Platelet Inhibitors:
e.g. Ticlopidine (Ticlid), Clopidogrel (Plavix) Platelet inhibitors are used to reduce the risk of heart attack or stroke and for patients who have had a coronary stent implant. Like aspirin, white willow contains salicylates which may thin blood, so it can increase the risk of bleeding.

Anticoagulants:
e.g. Warfarin (Coumadin) White willow bark contains salicylates and should not be combined with anticoagulants. They may increase the risk of bleeding or cause spontaneous bleeding.

Source:
Griffith, H. Winter. Complete Guide to Prescription and Nonprescription Drugs 2006 Edition. New York: Perigree, 2005.

Side effects
There have been few reported side effects. However, the same side effects as aspirin may theoretically occur, especially at higher doses: ringing in the ears, ulcers, stomach burning, pain, cramping, nausea, gastrointestinal bleeding and liver toxicity, rash, dizziness, and kidney impairment.

(Salix alba) Also known as White Willow, European Willow, Tree of Enchantment, and Witches Aspirin. One of the Seven Sacred Trees of the Irish. A Druid sacred tree, the willow is a Moon tree sacred to the White Lady. It's groves were considered so magical that priests, priestesses and all types of artisans sat among these trees to gain eloquence, inspiration, skills, and prophecies. Parts Used: Bark, collected in the Spring. Magical Uses: Willows are commonly found near ancient British burial sites. The willow is a guardian tree, said to protect from evil influences. The willow tree has a healing aura that blesses all it touches. All parts of the willow guard against evil and can be carried or placed in the home for this purpose. Magical brooms, especially Witch's brooms, are traditionally bound with a willow branch. The old phrase "knock on wood" comes from the custom of knocking on the wood of the willow to advert evil. The wood is also used for wands that are dedicated to Moon magick. The leaves and bark are used in spells designed for love, healing and necromancy. Mix crushed willow bark and sandalwood and burn under the waning Moon for necromancy rites. It is said that to know whether you will be married within the new year, the willow tree can tell you. On New Years Eve throw your shoe into the tree (you have nine throws total). If it gets caught on any of those nine throws then you will be married within the next twelve months. As a funeral herbe, planting a Willow during your lifetime is said to protect you when you take final leave of your body. The Willow (or a direct descendant through a cutting) must be thriving at your death. The Pussy Willow (a different variety) was deemed ideal by the Druids for charms and protection. Even today

there are some that believe a branch of the pussy willow is the best for ritual wands. There are indeed many types of willow and they all make excellent magickal wands. Pussy Willow cuttings are often included as altar decorations at Candlemas or Eostara, depending on the climate. Willow is the herbe to use with rock crystal to charge the stone and give it protective and healing virtues.

The Magical and Medicinal Associations of the Willow Tree


Since ancient times trees have been associated with magic, religion and medicine. Man has always relied on trees for shelter, warmth, food and even medicine. Associated with many religions, a tree grows at the centre: the tree of life, of the universe, of paradise and of the knowledge of good and evil. The willow tree was looked upon by the ancients as a romantic and psychic tree. It is ruled by the Moon. Because of its self-destructive qualities, the Willow was associated with sadness, grief and jilted lovers. Sprigs would be worn to help the grieving process. In its association with death, ancients would place a willow branch in coffins to help the transition of the soul into the Other World. Willow is also known as the 'Witches Aspirin.' A brew of willow bark can help ease pain. Wands made from the willow tree were used in healing. Wishing wands were also made of willow. The healing powers of the willow have been known since ancient times. Weeping willows were used by ancient healers including Hippocrates. The flowers and leaves of the weeping willow were made into tea to help reduce fevers. Willow can also be used for menstrual problems and diarrhoea. Other medicinal uses of willow includes: cure for earache and toothache, treatment of burns and warts. In the mid 1600's willow bark blended with vinegar was used to remove warts and corns. White willow was also found to considerably ease pain due to arthritis and rheumatism as well as aches in the joints and hips. Willow can be used to help alleviate fevers and headaches. Herbalists also choose willow to lower night sweating and hot flashes in woman during menopause. Herbalists use the bark of willow for its pain relieving qualities. White willow contains salicin which the body converts to salicylic acid. This resembles aspirin for the relief of pain. Willow bark helps reduce fever, relieve rheumatism and calm inflammations. For spiritual healing willow is used to rejuvenate the energy of the sick and the elderly. Smoke from the burning wood of a willow tree is believed to soothe the souls of the dead and guide them to the next level. For magic spells, willow is used in association with lunar concerns such as family, dreams, fertility, healing, love and psychic awareness. Willow is excellent wood for dowsing for water. Willow wands are used in magic to enhance creativity, intuition, dreams and spiritual insight. Talismans made out of willow can be used for similar purposes.

The Power of the Willow Tree


By Glennie Kindred (Originally Published at Imbolc 1997)

The Willow is the tree most associated with the moon, water, the Goddess and all that is feminine. It is the tree of dreaming, intuition and deep emotions. Symbolically it belongs to the beginning of spring, when all of life is stirring in the depths and begins to shoot outwards once again. In the ogham alphabet, the willow is Saille which became anglicised to "sally" which means a sudden outburst of emotions, action or expression (to "sally forth"). The Old French "saille" also means to rush out suddenly and the Latin "salire" means to leap. This is the underlying energy of the willow, and the key to understanding the powerful spirit of this beautiful tree. The early spring festival of Imbolc, Oimelc or Imolg is one of the two great female fire festivals among the yearly cycle of four. Imbolc is celebrated at the beginning of February and, like the willow, is sacred to Brigit, Brigantia, Bride, being the maiden aspect of the triple Goddess. It celebrates her re-emergence as a young virgin from the mountain fastness of her mother Cailleach - she who is of winter, the burial mounds and dark places. Cailleach, the crone aspect of the triple Goddess, drinks from the well of youth and is transformed into Bride/Brigit who is her other self. This is the Celtic version of the Demeter/Kore story, representing the mysteries of life, death and rebirth. Imbolc is sacred to women and the power of the feminine principles of inspiration, illumination and seership. In Ireland, Bride is the Goddess of healing and smithcraft. The church transformed this festival into Candlemass and kept much of the pagan symbolism. It is a time of initiation and of beginnings and celebrates the renewal of the potency of the Earth Mother and the union with the male principle of the returning light. The willow has much to teach us in its associations with our feminine aspects. By spending time with willows, or using the wood to make a talisman or wand, by taking it herbally or as a Bach flower remedy, we can deepen this connection. Spending time with willow trees at the full moon can only increase the potency of the insights and understanding to be gained. Working with the willow in the early spring, when the willow energy and the Earth's energy are aligned, is also a particularly potent time to explore its aspects. The willow has always been known as a tree of dreaming and enchantment, and it was associated in Celtic legend with poets and with spells of fascination and binding. This is the willow moon energy, which puts us in touch with our feelings and deep emotions, and it is the ability of the willow to help us to express these, let them out, own them and charge them in fantastical leaps of inspired eloquence and understanding. Our deep unconscious thoughts speak to us through our dreams. If you have lost touch with your dreams or wish to increase their potency, make yourself a willow wand and sleep with it under your pillow. You will find your dreams will immediately become more vivid and meaningful. Studying your dreams, writing them down, opening your intuition to interpreting them can lead to healing emotional problems and releasing tensions in your life. This movement on the emotional level, of allowing the emotions to come through to the surface, is the power of the willow's essential energy. Deep emotional pain blocks the energy of the body and can cause many illnesses. The willow will allow the person to move through the many levels of sadness, express the pain though tears and grief, and, by moving through these emotions, facilitate healing. The Bach flower remedy Willow is to be taken by those who have suffered adversity or misfortune in life and remain embittered by it. Willow will help the movement out of this negative state to a greater interest and involvement in the present. When you are either over-stimulated by your feelings or cut off from them, connecting with a tree with a water attunement will greatly help. If you are attracted to a particular tree, then follow this and reach out to the tree with an openness and a willingness to accept your intuitive responses. Physical contact with a tree will help balance your body's energy, and as you stand or sit with a tree you might receive some insights and inspirational thoughts. If you feel you have made a deep connection with a tree and want to end that communication, move slowly out of it and focus some love-light around the tree. It has been proven that the plant world is greatly enhanced by this. An attitude of thanks and gratitude for nature is also a sure way of opening up the channels of communication with trees and plants.

On a herbal level, willow bark has been used for its pain-relieving qualities for at least 2,000 years. The Salix alba (white willow, withe, withy) contains salicin, which is converted to salicylic acid in the body. Salicylic acid is closely related to aspirin, the synthetic drug that has displaced willow bark from popular use. Willow bark reduces fever and relieves rheumatism, a common ailment in these damp isles. A decoction can be used for gum and tonsil inflammations and as a footbath for sweaty feet. The bark is collected in the spring time, being careful not to ring the tree or it will die. The decoction is made by soaking 3 teaspoons (15ml) of the bark in a cup of cold water for 2 - 5 hours. Then bring to the boil. Strain and take a wineglassful each day, a mouthful at a time. The bark can be dried, powdered and stored in an airtight container. Black willow (Salix nigra) is the pussy willow and has black bark as opposed to the light greens of the white willow. Its properties are much the same, but herbally it was used in the past as an aphrodisiac and sexual sedative. Goat willow or sallow willow (Salix caprea) is used in very much the same way as the white willow, but sallow bark tea is recommended for indigestion, whooping cough and catarrh. It can also be used as an antiseptic and disinfectant. Culpeper says in his Complete Herbal "The moon owns the willow" and it was known as the witches' tree and the tree of enchantment. Robert Graves suggests that witch, wicker and wicked are all derived from willow. Willow rods are certainly used for binding magical and sacred objects and the popular witches' broom is traditionally made with an ash handle and birch twigs bound with willow. Willow wands are used for any ritual associated with the moon and as a protection on deep journeys into the underworld and the unconscious. The willow will always enhance inspired leaps of the imagination and is recommended to be used when seeking to assimilate the teachings of a wise woman or master, because understanding another person's enlightened place is made easier. Also when seeking to understand ancient ways, so that you can assimilate these past levels of information, and quickly move through the underlying emotions, to appreciate humankind's patterns and utilise this information for change. By working with the moon and the cycles of the moon, we reconnect to the duality of the light (waxing) and the dark (waning) and the tides, the seas, water and the qualities of water which include flowing, surrender, harmonising and accepting. Moon magic puts us in touch with our emotions and unconscious, which balances out our solar rational conscious views. The moon represents the Goddess and everything which reflects and suggests the power of women. Willow is used for charms of fascination and binding, and during the spring moon we have the power of the Spring Maiden who fascinates and binds the power of the young King. Aphrodite is associated with the spring and the bright half of the moon, courtship and the union which blesses the land with fertility. British and Irish mythology is also rich with legends of the beguiling, Willowy Spring Maiden who is called Olwen, Niwalen, Gwenhyver, Cordelia, Blodeuwedd and many others, who initiate the young King into a deeply sexual experience. Tree magic generally falls into the class of sympathetic magic which operates through the doctrine of signatures. This states that a plant will act on that part of the body which it most resembles. This can be subdivided into homeopathic magic (the Law of Similarity) and contagious magic (the Law of Contact, using a magically charged object). Homeopathic magic words on the principle that "like begets like", and by using willow wood for a wand or talisman it will be charged with the properties of the willow. The flexibility of the willow's twigs inspires us to move with life, rather than resist what we are feeling, and can also help you to let go of conditioned responses to life's experiences and to move towards a greater acceptance of self and others.

Willow's weeping stance reflects its association with grief. By wearing a piece of willow (as in the popular song "All around my hat I will wear the green willow") a person will be able to access all the levels of grief connected with a loss, and be able to move through all these different levels, expressing the whole deep emotional experience, to gain healing and inner strength. When one of the willow's branches or twigs becomes disconnected, it will easily grow into a new tree if it finds some soil and water, teaching us that contained within a loss, or a new direction, is the capacity for growth and healing. Willow is one of the best water-divining woods, along with hazel and birch. Homeopathic magic and contagious magic can be combined in the making of wands, talismans and any other objects made for personal or ritual use. Making a wand from willow means that all the willow's qualities are naturally contained within the wood, although you may want to charge or empower certain aspects for specific use. Willow wands are used whenever there is a need to connect with intuition, dreams, seership, visions, poetic and inspired writing or images, and whenever there is either an emotional numbness or emotional excess, or where there are negative emotional feelings which need to be worked through. Use a piece of fresh willow, cut from the tree with appropriate reverence and ritual, or a newly fallen piece which the tree has recently shed. You may like to take the bark, or some of the bark, off and carve it with magical symbols or anything else you may wish to use to energise your wand. It is easier to carve fresh wood and then let it dry out. Small twigs will dry out quickly without cracking in a house, but it is better to let larger pieces of wood dry slowly in an outhouse or shed, or under a hedge. When it is dry, it may be polished with several layers of beeswax to protect the wood, or left natural. Talismans may be made in the same way, perhaps using the natural shape of the wood to suggest and inspire a carving. Talismans may be worn round the neck or as a brooch, or carried within a pouch and kept close. They may be magically carved with symbols relevant to their use. Symbolism is not fixed, there are no correct versions of anything, and the willow particularly stimulates our ability to follow our intuitions and find out own meanings behind the symbols. It is true there are traditional meanings associated with things, but traditions must evolve and include new insights and ways of working. We may evolve a new set of symbols, particularly relevant to ourselves, which others may adopt and integrate into a new system. What was meaningful to people in one part of our evolution or history may no longer apply. Interpretations may no longer speak to the conscious or the unconscious. The patterns which a seer can unfold need to be potent and meaningful to our present spiritual evolution. We have been taught to regard our intuition as unreliable but we know that this isn't true and we must use it more in order to develop our ability to use it to the full. The power of the willow can enhance this resolve. There are literally hundreds of legends involving the ancient and beautiful willow. Here are a few more for you to enjoy. There is a European legend about the origin of Alder and Willow. April 21st was the festival day for the Goddess Pales, Roman goddess of shepherds and herdsmen. Two men decided to spend the day fishing instead of participating in the required ceremonies. As a punishment the Goddess turned them into these trees so they would forever have to haunt the banks and streams leaning over watching for fish. It has been a custom to plant willows in cemeteries, a symbol of sadness and death for some, I personally have always thought they were absolutely beautiful. The first recording of this custom is in China where the willow is also a symbol of immortality because of it's long life. In European folklore the willow has been believed to be "planted by the devil to lure people to suicide by the restful swinging of it's branches"

According to Bible stories it was the tree where Judus hung himself after betraying Jesus. It has been said that the willow produces snakes, while it's ashes will drive them away. Witches give the tree special importance and use it as a meeting place. In Louisiana folklore Willow leaves are used. You treat the fever by laying on the cool leaves, when the leaves become warm, it meant the fever had transferred into them. Willow smoke is believed to sooth and guide the souls of the dead Old Time Medicinal Uses Henriette has some great info & pictures on her site: White Willow bark contains salicin . In 1827 a french chemist Named Leroux extracted the active substance that relieves pain and named it " Salicin." In 1899 Friedrich Bayer in Germany marketed aspirin. Willow has been used for 1000's of years to treat pain & fever. Pliny A Natural History records several other uses for willow: The ashes from the burnt bark of the tips of the branches was said to cure corns and calluses and to remove spots on the face. A decoction of the bark and leaves in wine was applied externally for gout. Earache was treated with willow sap warmed in pomegranate rind with rose oil or with boiled willow leaves beaten up with wax. Both European herbalists and Rocky Mountain Native American tribes both independently discovered the use of the decoction as a hair rince removes dandruff, the English mixed the decoction with wine for their shampoo. Native Americans also used the leaves for a poultice to apply to wounds & cuts, it was also used for making strings for baskets and other uses. Hippocrates used white willow, the cuniform sign for the willow appears frequently in prescriptions on the 4000 year old Sumerian tablet from Nippur The Ebers Papyrus lists a liquid from the tree which was mixed with figs, frankincense, beer, and other things, and "boiled, strained, and taken for four days to cause the stomach to receive bread" Willow appears in Dr Thompson's translation of the Assyrian tablets The Bible makes reference to the trees for comfort, shade and water. Dioscorides pointed out Willows astringent qualities, and makes reference to it's use for gout, and the ashes steeped in vinegar used for corns on the feet Galen a Greek physician who came along a century after Discorides (his name is where the term "galenicals" comes from) noted willow bark extract was helpful in cleansing & healing the eyes when infected. In The Herball of John Gerard 1597 states " to stay the spitting of Bloud when boiled in wine and drunke."