Every year, I’m drawn to the chili peppers at our local farmer’s market. I don’t know what it is about them that so entices me, but it’s consistent. This year, I decided it’s time to do a little chili pepper magic.
I strung up a bunch of publanos to dry. They’re hanging above my kitchen table. I live in a busy area right on an emergency route. Although I feel safe here, I’m not blind to the graffito tagging along the parkway straight across the street from my house or the occasional tweaker needles we find in the lawn. I know a few of my neighbors have been burgled, too. After I hung those publanos, I started looking into how older cultures used chilies.
Chilies were almost universally used in relation to dark or maleficent magics. They’re incorporated in a variety of South American and Mexican rituals for banishing maleficent energies, like the evil eye or evil energies, often in accompaniment with salt. Once the chili pepper migrated beyond its South American and Central American homeland, other cultures used it similarly. It seems that the chili pepper is universally recognized as a fire that gets the dark and evil going. In astrological terms, the chili pepper is associated with Mars, the God of War. Given they’re fiery effect, that association makes a whole lot of sense. Suddenly, those publanos look more like a charm to ward off trouble than a kooky decoration.
Other chili pepper projects:
- Cleansing salt mix, salt, ground chili peppers, and myrrh resin
- Chili pepper mojo bag for travel, especially through war-torn areas, ground or small chilies, yarrow, rose petals, whole garlic clove, elder berries, lavender essential oil, raw wool, and cotton
- Chili balm, for banishing aches and pains topically.
- Chili vinegar, 6 cayenne chilies infused into 1 quart cider vinegar for 2 weeks. Great for salsa.
- Chili tincture, 1:4 chili pepper weight to vodka ratio.
For more information on the medicinal and magical uses of Chili Pepper, see The Practical Herbalist!