We all have days when we have low mood, and feeling a little “flat”; that’s quite normal. But if it has no obvious cause and goes on for more than a couple of weeks, it’s possible that it’s depression. You can seek medical advice, but it’s worth trying other things to run alongside an official diagnosis. Herbs can be very helpful. The only one that has contra-indications is the popular remedy using St John’s Wort, and that shouldn’t be taken in conjunction with any anti-depressant medication you may be prescribed.
However, valerian can be very helpful. This spell uses the healing root of the valerian plant and good old fashioned sun power. Valerian can be obtained from any good herbalist, and you can also find it conveniently already ground and made into tea bags. These may well be easier to use, particularly if you are in a really low mood when even soaking some roots seems like too much effort.
It can have a bit of a strange smell, but try not to let that put you off, as it can be extremely effective, especially when combined with meditation and nature magick.
Doc has posted a couple of things on self-help recently, and this spell runs really well if you combine it with some of the suggestions that he’s mentioned.
This spell runs over the course of nine days, and this is what you need to do:
✴ Before breakfast, go outside and meditate for five minutes or more. You can sit or stand. Face the East and picture yourself soaking up the energizing, healing rays of the sun. Don’t worry if it’s cloudy – after all, the sun is still there, you just can’t see it with your physical eyes!
Again, I would suggest that if it is a miserable cold day, you can actually do this indoors, and maybe find yourself a nice fleece blanket to lay on, and try to have a lamp that gives out heat shining gently onto your face. If you close your eyes, you can imagine that you’re laying under the sunshine. Being indoors and comfortable is better than being outside and not being able to relax properly.
✴ After your evening meal(1) – or if it’s Winter, before the sun sets – perform a similar meditation, but this time facing the setting sun. Face West and feel yourself soaking up the great orb’s relaxing, but still warming rays as it sinks into the Western skies.
If you’re not sure of the compass points, most phones have a compass app now, so you can use that. Search on the Apple or Android appstores.
✴ It’s a really good idea to try and find time and motivation for a 30 minute walk each day. If you can’t manage that, any time you can push yourself to do is a bonus. It’s best if you can get to the countryside, heath or parkland, or anywhere quiet and leafy. You’re soaking up the positive energies of nature, so it makes sense to try to find somewhere like this.
Take your time, and focus your thoughts on your place in the scheme of things and try to align yourself with the natural world. Listen to the sounds around you, and notice the birds, plants and flowers, and the leaves on the trees. Try and keep your internal chatter to a minimum.
If you find somewhere that’s convenient, and you feel inclined to do so, it can be very restorative to take some time to lay down on the grass, and really feel the positive energies flowing around you. Close your eyes and listen to all of the small sounds around you that you would often miss.
✴ Drink a cup of valerian tea up to three times a day – morning, noon and just after sunset. Make an infusion in a medium sized mug, maybe have a particular mug that you associate with comforting, relaxation time. Use 1-2 teaspoons of valerian root, or use a tea-bag as I mentioned earlier. Either let it brew for around 10 to 15 minutes if you are using the powdered root, or follow the instructions on the carton if you use a tea-bag.
You can sweeten it with honey or maple syrup if it makes it more palatable. It will have a profound calming effect, reducing all anxiety and tension.
Oh, and if you have cats, you may well find they love valerian as much as catnip!
Follow this pattern for nine days, and it helps too if during this time you can avoid alcohol, and maybe think about choosing decaffeinated drinks as opposed to caffeinated ones.
Hopefully by the end of the nine days, your mood will have lifted.
1 Nutrition is highly important in the treatment of depression – even if you don’t feel hungry, or can’t be bothered to make food, make sure that you have something that’s easier to prepare, like a hearty soup and some good bread.
Writer and purveyor of the magickal arts.