This month for Herbs in Witchcraft, we're exploring onions. This humble root vegetable forms the base of most recipes, but how can it heal our bodies and spirits? Lets get into it.
Almost every sauce, soup, casserole, or curry starts with chopping an onion. You almost don't need to read the first step of most recipes because it's always to sautee chopped onion until translucent. As cooks, we know that onions provide a base of flavor that holds up everything else in a dish. But do these alliums have healing properties? What about their metaphysical energy? How can we use them in spellwork? Let's explore.
Healing Properties of Onions
Onions contain antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties which help to prevent chronic illnesses such as cancer. These antioxidants may also help prevent heart disease and improve bone density.
Their high fiber content helps promote good gut health. Anglo-Saxons used a combination of onions and sage to aid digestion when eating rich meats.
Onions also contain antibacterial properties, and they were once used in folk medicine to treat coughs and colds. It was believed that sniffing an onion could help clear the sinuses. Makes sense to me. Russians used them in World War II as an antiseptic for battle wounds.
Onion juice was used in the 17th century for all types of remedies including baldness, gout, mad dog bites, and burns. It was also once believed that an onion placed under the bed could help relieve fevers.
Magical Properties of Onions
Ancient Egyptians had a strong connection to the onion. They believed the layers of the onion represented the universe and eternity. They would place onions in the eye sockets of the deceased. The Egyptians would also sometimes pay their workers with them. They believed the onion could absorb negative energies and impurities.
Surprisingly, to me at least, onions are also used in spells for sexual energy and fertility. I suppose once you learn that they're ruled by Mars and the element of fire with strong masculine energy, it begins to make more sense. You can use them to call in physical health and protection.
Ready to try that baldness remedy? Blend the juice of an onion with a shot of vodka and a tablespoon of honey, then massage this into your scalp and leave it there for 30 minutes. I'd love to hear the results if anyone tries this out. It must have worked for some Anglo-Saxons.
Onions can be used in banishing spells to get rid of unwanted houseguests. Burning the blossoms can be used to banish bad habits.
You can also use onions gathered on Christmas Eve as a form of divination to help you make a decision where you have several possible outcomes. You'll need an onion for each possibility. Write each option down, and plant it, along with your onion, in a pot. The first one to sprout will tell you which option you should choose.
Grow onions around your home, allowing them to blossom. This will creative a protective barrier around your property. You could also rub your body with an onion to protect from injury.
If your space needs energetic cleansing, let an onion soak up the negativity. Quarter an onion, and place one segment in each corner of the room. Leave it overnight, then bury each piece outside the following day. Repeat this for five days.
Recipes for Kitchen Witches
Next time you're chopping an onion, you'll have all kinds of options for calling in the energy you need from it. While probably most of my savory recipes contain onion in one form or another, here are a few that highlight its flavor particularly well.
Who knew the humble onion had so much power? Well, now you do, so use its energy to your advantage. Call on the metaphysical properties of onions every time you're chopping and sauteeing. It'll be awesome.