In this article, we will discuss the benefits of mugwort as an herbal medicine for physical and spiritual healing, especially for lucid dreaming. There are hundreds of natural herbs and plant medicines available to the public today, and at a certain point, it is extremely hard to keep track of which plant does what. Between family learned remedies, and new medical journals studying the science behind each plant and its effects, a lot of information can get lost. We hope to provide an easily understandable crash course about each herb that we carry at our shop for those who want to learn and experiment.
Popular Uses and The Benefits of Mugwort
Mugwort is one of the more popular herbs we keep in stock, the name rings a bell for many, and reminds one of witchy brews in a cauldron. The name comes from its history of being used as a flavoring in alcoholic drinks before the use of hops, and for its skill of repelling cabbage moths in the garden. Nearly every part of this plant is harvested and preserved at different times of growth, the most popular being the dried leaves for smoking. The plant itself is considered an invasive weed in many countries, and is related to the common daisy. With small, drooping red flowers and a frosty green stalk, it is not the most beautiful specimen.
Brief History of Mugwort Throughout the World
However this plant can be traced back to 3 BCE, starting in Europe and Northern Africa. The history beyond that is almost worldwide. Roman soldiers placed the leaves in their shoes to keep their feet from hurting, while Native Americas used it as a spiritual ingredient to keep ghosts and unfriendly spirits away, and women in the tribe would ingest it to increase fertility. Today, women use mugwort in a very similar way, ingesting it or rubbing a salve on the lower abdomen to regulate the menstrual cycle and ease excessive bleeding.
Spiritual Benefits of Mugwort
Among the benefits of mugwort, the most popular, however, is the use of Mugwort for spiritual health, specifically for the state of sleep and the dreams you experience. Many people know this plant as an aid for lucid dreaming, a state in which you are aware that you are dreaming, and are generally able to have control over your dream. This is something that many think could help those with unresolved trauma, or other mental illnesses. This can be done in many ways.
Filling a pillow with mugwort and lavender to lay over your eyes, or burning in a room along with sage in a process called ‘smudging’, thought to clear the air of negative energy and provide a safe environment. Today, it is most popular to blend with some mild herbs and smoking before bed. Obviously, the response to this herb is always very different person to person. Some use it nightly to keep away nightmares or to have a mildly spiritual, mostly fun experience with controlling your dreams. Others have used it to unearth things that they are unable to confront in their waking state.
This may sound like something from a fantasy novel, but it is, in fact, based in science. A plant that affects your dreams and/or sleep state is called oneirogen, stemming from the Greek language, and roughly translates into “something that alters consciousness”. These things can range from aromas, to spices in foods, and was written about frequently by none other than Benjamin Franklin, who credited most of his inventions to ideas created in a dream state. Ironic to think that the man who created the definition of the American dream was also an Oneirogen enthusiast.
Using Mugwort To Alleviate Nightmares
When it comes to herbal medicine, it is hard to define a correct place to start. This was the first medicinal herb I ever smoked, before cannabis even! I will never forget the immediate, comfortable sedation and the eagerness to lay down. I suffer from frequent nightmares and often feel exhausted when I wake up from the emotional workout that comes from a bad dream. After ingesting mugwort two or three times, I was able to turn to whatever may be tormenting me in my dream and simply say “alright, that’s enough” and the dream would dissipate to nothing more than some pleasant scenery. I swear by this herb for those who feel like they have no control over their sleeping mind. As always, be sure to test the ingestion of herbs in very small dosages to prevent bad reactions. Enjoy the exploration of the plant medicine world, and, as always, happy healing!