I am starting to put together my studies for herbs and their effects on the body – the physiological effect that plants have are the most obvious way of *knowing* that they work. The emotional and spiritual effects of plants are well known, if not all over the science papers out there… harder to *prove* but just as relevant, strong and incredible. After my last illustration, the Galactic Womb, I went straight for the Galactic Power Heart.
Herbal Medicine for the Heart
My cat had been experiencing dyspnoea and we heard a heart murmur through the steth. Time with the vet demonstrated he has an enlarged atrial cavity and his difficulty breathing was an effect of this. At the same time a family member had been diagnosed with atrial fibrillation. While this condition can be mild, it can also lead to clots in the atria due to the quivering of the heart muscle and irregularity of the beat. Clots can lead to strokes and this is serious.
The heart is the centre of our vital organs – seated deep in the chest cavity, protected by our ribcage and without it we die. The heart is the seat of energy – pushing and pulsing the vital forces around the body – blood, oxygen, prana (energy). It is considered the seat of emotion, spirit, the centre of the subtle body as well as the physical.
Where do you put your hand when you feel emotional? Often on the heart. We protect the heart – closely associated with emotion – sadness, love, grief, wonder, excitement.
Heart health is so so important. If we nourish ourselves, we can feed our vital organs. If we stay fit we can feed our vital organs and if we find emotional balance we can relieve pressure on our vital organs.
Wild medicines – plants that surround us are our allies here. Some plants like the ubiquitous hawthorn which appears on hilltops, commons, hedgerows, gardens, woodland etc. work directly on the heart, dilating the arteries and allowing more blood flow to the heart muscle. It is also packed with antioxidants. Others like limeflower or rose work to reduce blood pressure and alleviate stress through calming action.
In this picture I chose motherwort, hawthorn, garlic, limeflower to sketch out. There are lots more super plant allies I could include. Garlic and hawthorn berry can be included in our diets as medicine and motherwort and linden are easy to grow or find – the huge lime (lime is a corruption of lind – hence the name linden) trees that grow abundantly in temperate climates create a beautiful spring scent when their hanging bract and flower tops open.
There are more potent heart remedies like mistletoe, lily of the valley and of course foxglove which will be illustrated soon…..
Look after your heart and it will look after you