"She seemed to come suddenly upon happiness as if she had surprised a butterfly in the Winter woods"
(edith wharton)

Sunday, 8 July 2007

Holly Lore

I was so interested in Daisy's Celtic tree lore - it was alot of fun learning from her. It can't stop now - so I research for myself..... my interpretation will be a little different however, being on the other side of the world. I guess I really should try to work out the corresponding tree months to suit my wheel of the year, but truthfully, I can't be bothered and I don't think it really matters. I like to learn and I have realized that as long as this need for sacred ritual and ancient folklore is satisfied, it doesn't matter at all. I love folk-lore so much that as long as I can adapt it to my life, I am happy & I think that is what it is all about - being happy..... so here we have Holly, which fits nicely into my time of year right now..

From the 8th July until August 4th, we have the 8th moon of the celtic year. Holly, which actually means 'holy' ~ Holly is sacred to both the Winter and Summer Solstices. The Holly, is allied to the element of fire, and is an herb of Saturn and Mars. The bird connected with this month is the starling.

The leaf of the Holly can be dried and used as teas for fevers, bladder problems and bronchitis as well as rheumatism. please note & be aware that the berries of the Holly tree are !!poisonous!!
Two special spirits dwell within Holly trees: the Holly Man lives in the tree that bears prickly Holly, and the Holly Woman dwells within that which give forth smooth and variegated leaves. the unicorn is one of the Celtic symbols for this tree.
The tree held such magical powers that the Druids made their ritual wands from its wood. The Druids advised people that when winter came that they should take holly into their homes for it would shelter elves and fairies. They were warned to remove the holly entirely from the house before Imbolc eve because just one leaf in house would spell misfortune. It was carried by Celtic men for good luck
Use Holly in protective magick by hanging a sprig of Holly in the home all year to insure protection and good luck. Holly is also an excellent charm to wear for protection. Soak Holly leaves overnight in spring water under a full moon to make your ''Holly water". sprinkle the water around your home for psychic protection and cleansing. Ensure that Holly has a place in your garden because its presence wards off unfriendly spirits and if planted close to your home it will protect against lightning, but then ~ an old Irish tradition tells us that you should never plant a Holly tree near your house because the Female children will never marry. The Holly tree has a strong link to the spirit world. and if you cast the leaves around outside your home, it will repel unwanted spirits. It is said to ease thoughts of jealousy and mistrust.It is believed to be unlucky to burn Holly branches unless they are well and truly dead.
"If the holly berries are plentiful then a severe winter is ahead".
Gather nine Holly leaves in complete silence on a Friday after midnight, wrap them up in a white cloth, use nine knots to bind the cloth, and then place them under your pillow, your dreams will come true. When harvesting the leaves from the Holly, remember to ask the tree if it will allow you to take the parts and be sure to leave the tree an offering of thanks when you are done. Holly favors red and yellow stones as gifts.

so how can I bring all of that into my daily life and satisfy my need for ritual and folklore? I like the idea of the 'Holly' water - coming up to Imbolc for me it will be wonderful to have Holly water to put into my sacred well that I plan on making for Imbolc. I can use that to do a sprinkling of my home, to banish negative energies and I can hang some in my home all year round - I just need to find a tree.

Yes, I am back. Not much to report. Just say, I had way too much to drink - I don't usually drink very much at all, maybe a glass of red once a fortnight. But last night, I had 4 glasses of red wine and danced. Now I am paying for it. But I did laugh alot, so that is good. It was freezing cold and rained so I only got one photo,which I will post tomorrow. I wanted to visit the actual Black Stump but visibility was just about nil. Joe and I are planning on revisiting at Christmas time - the area is gorgeous, very green from all the rain and there were alot of lambs in the paddocks which is good for our farmers.

*~* I hope your day is filled with butterflies, magick, colour & fripparies! ~*~


Peggy said...

Oh thank you so much for the info on the holly tree! I have tons of them and am going to do the ritual you posted about and dry some leaves.

Sweetpea said...

I love this post- so like info I would get my mum. You are so alike her or she was so alike you! Hope you are not paying for the wine too much! xxx

Sweetpea said...

the above should say.......'from my mum' x

Bimbimbie said...

Love that you are going to continue with an Australian slant to Daisy's Celtic tree lore. I have native holly growing here Robyn its called Alchornea illcifolia or jut native holly to me (I've got my reference book on my knee). I haven't done a search but would think you would be able to get hold of one from a native nursery. Let me know if you want any leaves sent down to you.

LisaOceandreamer said...

To my knowledge there are no holly trees growing anywhere around here - and when I say here - I mean in my general area. Perhaps in the canyon there is some but you don't really ever see it until Christmas time. It's always interesting to learn the legends and lore of trees. I know Daisy is quite happy.
I don't drink much so I can feel it after only one glass of wine..heehee...I can't imagine me after 4 - we would have been whirling around together - and today I'd be moaning. lol!
Glad you had fun!

Rowan said...

I'm glad that you are continuing with Daisy's tree lore, I found the articles she did so interesting. It's good to know that there will be more to look forward to. Sounds like you had a good time - hope the after effects have worn off now:)

Naturegirl said...

Robyn I found this folklore about HOLLY so interesting! Holly is a plant I always have in my garden and although I use the branches to decorate at Xmas time I never knew all the interesting facts about my Holly bushes!! Oh I do have use for the ~Holly water~ yes indeed!! So glad I planted the Holly bushes ~after my daughter got married~!!
I have been hesitating in cutting back the branches of my Holly and now I can understand where the hesitation stems from!!! I shall ~A_S_K~ my Holly if I may cut the branches!!
Great post and Daisy would approve!
hugs NG

A bird in the hand said...

That was very interesting! (did you find your holly?). It grows in bushes here but I haven't seen one in ages. xoxo

mrsnesbitt said...

I fully understand about the wine...I have had a headache for the best part of today!
We have a holly tree in our garden. It is a big favourite of the birds.

Pam Aries said...

Wow! i enjoyed reading all about the Holly! And..we have PLENTY of starlings around here..they belong to the Corvid family(Crows)!!!

Gemma said...

Robyn I love learning about tree lore....and love researching them too. In fact i have a library book checked out right now that is very full of information.
Oh BTW....just sampled my first Australian Yellow Tail Shiraz
oh yeah...I could drink 4 glasses but don't want to fall down.

Sacred Suzie said...

Sometimes we need to indulge, spin around and get dizzy and later pay for the sweet anarchy.

I have a little holly bush in my garden! I'm so glad that it's protecting me and that I am already married, LOL.

Thanks Robyn!

Carmen said...

I am actually very happy to have heard of your dancing and a little extra of red wine, LOL
Thanks for the teaching about the holly tree.

AnnieElf said...

I love the way you have carried on the Daisy tradition here Robyn. I see little glimpses of her throughout.

Tinker said...

I loved reading about the holly tree, and all the wisdom you're sharing with us, Robyn. I've actually been finding some stray holly trees coming up here and there on the hill - I'd been debating whether to trim them out or leave them - I think I'll leave them for now! XOX