Cat’s Bits for May 14-20, 2017
The Celtic Tree Month of Hawthorn
May 13: Celtic Tree Month of Hawthorn begins
May 14: Mother’s Day
May 25: New Moon at 3:44 pm EST
May 27: Ramadan begins
May 29: Memorial Day
A few minutes ago every tree was excited, bowing to the roaring storm, waving swirling, tossing their branches in glorious enthusiasm like worship. But though to the outer ear these trees are now silent, their songs never cease.
(Photo by Plamen Radev: freeimages.com)
May 13th to June 9th.The Tree
The origin of the word Hawthorn comes from the Anglo-saxon “Haegthorn” which means hedgethorn or thorny hedge. This tree grows to the size of a large shrub, although it can reach 30 feet, and is popular as a hedge plant in England. It has dense branches that grow in twists and turns which makes it almost impenetrable. It also grows some pretty nasty thorns. The wood is exceptionally hard and fine grained, and burns quite hot. The new growth on a Hawthorn is reddish and in May it sports white flowers and later in the season red berries both of which have medicinal properties. This tree has a very long life span and has been known to reach 400 years old. The Hawthorn was often called the May Tree because its fragrant white flowers bloomed in May just in time for Beltane. These flowers were used for decorating maypoles and homes for this holiday.
In healing, the flowers, leaves and berries are used. A tonic made from the berries is said to help water retention in diabetics. The leaves and flowers can be made into a tea that helps anxiety, poor circulation, asthma, arthritis, loss of voice and rheumatism. (Remember, always consult your doctor before adding any herbs to your regimen)
In Myth & Magic
In mythology, the Hawthorn plays a roll in the romantic welsh tale of Kulhwch and Olwen. It embodies the protector of Olwens virginity, a giant called Yspaddaden. The giant is slain as the spring flowers (Hawthorn) open, which symbolizes summer defeating winter and the turning of the seasons. In other lore, the erotic scent of the Hawthorn blossoms is said to enhance fertility and promote chastity. The ancient Turks called it ‘the scent of woman” and was considered an erotic symbol.
Because of it’s nasty thorns it is believed that the “Crown of Thorns” worn by Jesus at the Crucifixion was made from Hawthorn branches.
The Hawthorn was used to protect the home from lightning and negative entities, and the ancient Romans believed that children were protected from evil spells if it was placed in their cradle. It could grant wishes and could be found guarding sacred wells and crossroads.
Hawthorn has long been considered a witches tree and is part of the sacred triad of Oak, Ash and Thorn (the three realms/ maiden, mother, crone). It is also a favorite of fairies which makes it very unlucky to cut one down or harm it in any way.
To dream of pink Hawthorn flowers means happiness, but if they are white it means money. If you dream of the tree itself it means harmony among friends. As a magical name Hawthorn is perfect for witches of either sex.
People born during this month are full of great ideas and tend to be multi talented innovators. These people may also be performers in an artistic format, much like the Bards of old. They also make shrewd business people and have little patience with folks who do not take their work seriously. They can also be very protective of family and those they consider family.
Magical Properties: fertility(both male and female), protection (the thorns), prosperity, binding and cleansing, fishing magic, chastity and fairy magic.
Also Known As: May Bush, Whitethorn, Bread and Cheese Tree, Mayflower, Tree of Chastity, Gaxels
Deities: Danu, Frigg, Thor, Brigid, Vulcan, Dagda, Goibaniu, Cardea
Sacred Stones: Topaz and Amethyst
Bright Blessings for a Magickal Week!
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Cat’s Treasure Trove: An Eclectic Collection of Jewelry and Gifts! http://catstreasuretrove.weebly.com
The Desert Path: The Dusty Ramblings of a Desert Pagan. https://catsister.wordpress.com
Sacred Spirals on Facebook: The Place Where All Paths Meet https://www.facebook.com/groups/SacredSpirals/
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Sources for this article are:
sources: the crystal forest
The New Book of Magical Names, Phoenix McFarland
Cunninghams Encyclopedia of Magical Herbs, Scott Cunningham
Flower and Tree Magic, Richard Webster