Wednesday, 22 July 2015

Sacred poison

Thor, the god of thunder, sometimes named Thunor, is associated with many plants. He was regarded as the god of thunderstorms as well as fertility and the land. Farmers used to worship him and called upon him to bring thunder and rain in order to grow crops. 
I mentioned Burdock in a previous post that this is one of the plants of Thor Himself. Now the pretty blue flowers in the picture on this entry are Aconite, also called wolf's bane, monkshood, blue rocket and Thor's helmet. It's a poisonous flower, belonging to the Ranunculasae species that also include family members like the buttercup and clematis. It's one of the oldest plant families on earth. The Aconitum Aconite grows in chilly hilly landscapes of the Northern hemisphere. Associated with wolves and it's folklore place in werewolf stories, the origins of that may be linked to ancient myths of Cerberus, the three-headed dog of the underworld. Also the side effects of eating wild Aconite is strikingly similar to the effects of rabies. Throughout European history were legends of monstrous dogs carrying poisonous rabies like Cerberus, Fenrir and Garm, the Norse and Germanic hellhounds. Aconite was also used by the berserkers and ulfhednar to help gain werewolf strength. The ancient tribes of Germany called Aconite "storm helmet". Arrowheads were dipped in Aconite poison and so this toxic plant was the earliest ingredient for ancient biological warfare.   

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