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The Herb of Remembrance

We just recently had Thanksgiving here in Canada, and I cooked a mini dinner for my Canadian kiddos, with the addition of my special British roast potatoes; extra ingredient - ROSEMARY. I just think it has one of the most beautiful and vibrant fragrances of the herb family, and reminds me of my grandmothers Sunday roast dinners.

BUT did you know how significant rosemary has been for centuries right into modern day when it comes to grief (as well as many other things)?

Well if you did, [insert applause] here... and if like me, this was brand new information, let us get to it.

THE EGYPTIANS!! While rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) is native to the Mediterranean, it was found way back in some of the tombs of the Egyptians, they considered it sacred, placing it in tombs to symbolizes remembering the one who was gone and they even used it in their embalming process.

THE ANCIENT GREEKS!! Greek students would brain rosemary into their hair or make garlands around their neck to help with memory and remind them of the importance of study and learning.

Rosemary has been used for love, friendship, memory and ceremony. Brides would wearing it around their neck or in their hair to be a reminder of the vows of faithfulness to one another and even gifted little bouquets to the guests.

THE ROMANS would use rosemary in their burial rite and ceremony.

AND EARLY EUROPEANS created traditions of mourners carrying rosemary in bunches and throwing it on top of coffins as a remembrance ritual. It was even used during the plague to try to heal and to combat melancholy. It is fascinating to discover the rich history of this herb. It has been for centuries, and in many cultural contexts a symbol of love, friendship and remembrance.

In fact, in very recent times, rosemary was part of the Queen of Englands funeral flowers as sign of remembrance also. An age old tradition carrying its way into modern day.

As if Rosemary hasn't done enough to give you a little shiver of its ritualist and symbolic nature, it also struts it stuff in the body and mind world.

"It is considered to be antispasmodic, stimulant, tonic, astringent, diaphoretic, carminative, antimicrobial, diuretic, bitter, bronchodilator, and decongestant in action."

The Solidago School of Herbalism

Rosemary is a huge player in the essential oil world, with studies showing increase in memory, ability to calm nerves and anxiety. It can relieve stress, and reduce pain and inflammation. Check out this online article citing results from a pilot research study done with 22 participants.

Rosemary really has her place on the dance floor, and I am intrigued to search for more. Leave an comments and articles below for any cool tis bits about rosemary.

Rosemary is considered to help in areas of:

Mental health

Immune Health

Nervous sytem health

Digestive health

Urinary health

Antioxidant abilities

Respiratory health

Hair and Skin Health

Anti Inflammatory

Restorative (long term stress, depression, chronic fatigue and adrenal exhaustion)

I alway love to share what I'm learning as I walk my own grief journey and walk alongside other grievers in the process. I love ritual practise, and that doesn't always have to be hyper spiritual, throw your bras in the fire... although I love some of that too. It has looked like having pancakes with my kids every Friday to foster togetherness, to celebrating my dead dad's birthday with cake each year, to having time to meditate and hold space for remembrance - it all counts. I will be pondering the ways to add rosemary to our rituals to promote remembrance and love with this delight of a herb. Thanks to Rosemaryl

Sources used:

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