Thursday, March 23, 2017

Pussy Willow

You may know Pussy Willow as Goat Willow or Tree of Enchantment, Witches' Asprin, White Willow, Withe, Withy, Salicyn Willow, Osier, Sough Tree or Asille as it goes by many names.  The botanical name of the Willow 'Salix' comes from the Celtic word 'sal' - meaning near, and “lis” - meaning water. Because I live in an area of wetlands these trees are never too far from me. Pussy Willow is one of my favorite plants to gather each year.

witches asprin


Willow is a magical and healing tree. Its name literally means convolution and there is a convolution of energies associated with it. It stimulates an energy of healing on many levels, especially though in the areas of herbology and aromatherapy.  This powerful plant  has an essence that can help us in divination and reading signs. In fact, it is good for almost any form of divination. It is tied to the archetypal energies of the future. It reminds us that there are promises yet to be fulfilled. It renews and revitalizes, awakening the inner fires of hope and inspiration for that is yet to come.  Willows also awaken clairaudience - hearing of spirit. There is rarely a single message from willow. It is always multiple and many layered.

The Willow has always been known as a tree of dreaming, inspiration and enchantment. It was associated in Celtic legend with poets and spells of fascination and binding. Our deep unconscious thoughts speak to us through our dreams, so if you have lost touch with your dreams or wish to increase their potency, place a piece of Willow under your pillow when you sleep. You will find your dreams will immediately become more vivid and meaningful.

Old strips of Willow were used for binding magical and sacred objects together.  As with the binding of the Witches' Broom called "Tree of Enchantment" in the language of the Witches, was traditionally made with an Ash handle and Birch twigs bound with Willow. Willow is one of the best water-divining woods, along with Hazel and Birch.

Perhaps the most common magical use of the Willow is the making of Wands, for all the Willow's qualities are naturally contained within the wood, though you may wish to charge or empower certain aspects of its qualities for specific uses. Use a piece of fresh Willow cut from the tree with appropriate reverence and ritual, or use a newly fallen piece which the tree has recently shed. You may wish to strip the bark off and carve the wand with runic symbols to associate it with particular uses. It is easier to carve fresh wood and then let it dry out, small twigs will dry out quickly and without cracking in a house, but it is better to let larger pieces of wood dry slowly in an outhouse or shed or even under a hedge. When it is dry it can be polished with several layers of beeswax to protect the wood, or you may prefer to leave it natural.

Willow wands are used whenever there is a need to connect with intuition, dreams, seer-ship, visions and poetically inspired writing or images. They are also used to deal with emotional numbness or emotional excess, or where there are negative emotional feelings which need to be worked through. Like the wand, talismans and charms can 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. Like the wand, runic symbols can be carved on a talisman representative to their uses. Wands made from Willow are powerfully effective for wish-making and all water magic. When properly worked with in meditation and magic, willow wands and staffs help us realize the very intimate link between our thoughts and external events in our life. Willow is also the herb to work with rock crystal, to charge the stone and give it protective healing virtues. It is most often used to bring the blessings of the Moon into one's life.
☽✪☾ Blessings