Portraits of Plants as Healers: The Red Clover

There are two kinds of knowledge: knowledge of religion and knowledge of the body.” ~ Prophet Mohammed (a.s.)

Trifolium pratense (“3 leaf plant”, from Latin), red clover, is a herbaceous flowering plant in the family Fabaceae, native to Europe, the Levant, the Middle East (Western Asia) and northwest Africa, but planted and naturalised in many other regions of the world.

Due to it’s natural hormone and calcium content the Red Clover increases bone density, smoothes the skin, increases circulation and  helps to have a restful sleep. It is also very useful for the treatment of Asthma and Bronchities. I have also heard of people who drank Red Clover tea against mental health issues such as depression and they reported an easing of their symptoms. Red Clover is also known to be a blood purifier, expelling toxins form the blood and inner organs (liver).

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Oxymel, an ancient vinegar and honey therapy from Iran

"Finely cut herbs and plants  such as fresh tips of pine tree, mint, rosemary etc and add to apple cider vinegar for about 6 weeks. Filter vinegar and mix 1:3 with honey (1 part vinegar, 3 parts honey). Boil down to one quarter of former volume. Fill into bottles (no metal lid please) and keep in cool dark place."

Oxymel, is a medicinal drink or syrup compounded of vinegar and honey and other ingredients. About 1200 types of oxymel were also described and their considerations and contraindications were presented in Medieval Persian pharmaceutical manuscripts and Avicenna's Canon of Medicine.

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Recipe for (Halal) Herbal Apple Cider Vinegar

Allah has put blessings in vinegar (…)” ~ Muhammed (a.s)

The issue of Halal is often raised in relation to vinegar due to the process of making vinegar from ciders and wine. The website “My Halal Kitchen” has looked at the issues closer and has written about the different varities of vinegar and what they mean in a Halal context.  http://myhalalkitchen.com/the-vinegar-page/

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Rescue remedies against mental distress, Part 3: Smudging

“The ḥarmal does not grow, whether as a tree, a leaf or a fruit, without there being an angelic guardian spirit attached to it.” ~ Muhammed (a.s)

Throughout history, the burning of natural substances has been used for cleansing, healing and spiritual purposes. The Babylonians used smudge extensively while offering prayers or divining oracles, and so did the old Germans and Norsk tribes, as well as as the First Nations of the Americas and Austral-Asia. Whereever people make their habitat, smuding is part of everyday culture. In the regions of the Himalaya and the Indian sub-continent the incense trade started and via the Spice Route various religious ideas and incense came via Iran to Arabia and Mecca during the days of the prophet (a.s).

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Rescue remedies against mental distress, Part 2: Aromatic water

“There are olive and orange groves, hills of pine, lavender and sage, and the valleys of wild orchids, cyclamens and anemones. Children snacked straight from the trees on green almonds,figs, apricots, sweet carob pods, pine kernels and many more natural ‘fast foods’. When they were thirsty, they simply drank from the streams of mountain spring water.”

Lebanon is situated in an area of the world that is distinguished for its outstanding natural beauty and abundant and diverse flora. Naturally it has brought forward many herbal and plant remedies and outstanding healers working with the spectacular diverse nature in their homeland. This post can be understood also as a follow up to my post on “Wise Muslim Women Medicine” and my quest for finding and promoting female herbalists and healers in the Muslim world. The inspirations given in here are insh’allah inspiring for Muslims who seek alternatives to such popular alcohol based “quick remedies” as the popular Bach Bluten Therapy (Rescue Remedy) which are essences of flowers in a alcohol solution. The alcohol content in these Bach tinctures is so high it has to be considered a liquor, and it is diluting in my experience the healing properties of the plants.

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Rescue remedies against mental distress, Part 1: Bathing & Cleansing

“Allah created every [living] creature from water. (...)“ ~ Quran, 24:45

In Islamic medicinal knowledge and spiritual rituals are many transmissions enshrined, that concern bodily and spiritual cleanliness, such as in the book of Taharah. Most popular are the Ghusl (ritual cleansing) and the Woudou before prayer.  Water does not only cleanse, it replenishes the mind and the body, and in a bath the water's spiritual qualities are made optimal use of. Ritual baths (Ghusl) are also given to the dead in Islam.

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A Guide to Hijama, Part 2: Recommended Times for Hijama-Therapy

اقْتَرَبَتِ السَّاعَةُ وَانشَقَّ الْقَمَرُ وَإِن يَرَوْا آيَةً يُعْرِضُوا وَيَقُولُوا سِحْرٌ مُّسْتَمِرٌّ
"The hour drew nigh and the moon did rend asunder. And if they see a miracle they turn aside and say: Transient magic." ~  Verse 54:1-2 of the Qur'an

“Cupping is most detestable at the beginning of the crescent, but it is curing when the full moon begins to decrease.” ~ Prophet Muhammed (a.s)

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A Guide to Hijama, Part 1: History and Basic Technique

“Smile, even if your heart is dripping blood.” – Imam Ali (a.s)

Many confuse Hijama to be the same as popular wet cupping (or dry cupping in it’s alternative blood less application) or even the same as leeching. However, Hijama is it’s own unique medicinal technique that cures  patients of many ailments including psychic illness (depression aso.), chronic headaches, poisoning and asthma to name just a few applications.

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From Plant to Medicine, Part 3 ~ Simmering and Syrups

“Be like the honey bee, anything it eats is clean, anything it drops is sweet, and the branch it sits upon does not break.” ~ Imam Ali (a.s)

Simmered herbal essences
Simmering is a perfect method for making medicine from hart roots, fruits, barks and seeds. It also smells very good and while you prepare medicines you also fill the house with wonderful healing scents.

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Honey is a Divine Nourishment

“Allah is mild and is fond of mildness, and he gives to the mild what he does not give to the harsh.” ~ Mohammed (a.s)

Early Muslims utilized many plants and animal products mentioned in the Holy Quran and in the Hadith of the Prophet for health promotion, for example, dates, black seeds, olive leaf and olive oil, honey, and camel milk. Later on, these products formed the basis for the Prophet’s book on medicine (Al-Tibb al-Nabawi), which includes medical treatments, prescriptions of diseases, prevention, health promotion, and spiritual aspects that were recommended by the Prophet (a.s) to his companions.

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