Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Mysterious Monday, on Tuesday: Myrrh

Well, as you can see, I am still not smart enough to write my blogs in advance. Yesterday, we were busy baking cookies, wrapping presents and buying last minute stocking stuffers and such. By the end of the day, I was far too exhausted to write about myrrh.

(Image from an About.com article, photo by Alison Miksch/FoodPix/Getty Images)

As it turns out, myrrh is similar in many ways to frankincense. It, too, is harvested from a hardy scrub-like tree. It also forms a resin that can be burned as an incense or used in perfumes and cosmetics.

Myrrh can be taken internally to treat gastrointestinal problems such as gas and diarrhea. It is not only an anti-fungicide, but an anti-septic and an anti-viral, as well. It stimulates the circulatory system, increasing blood flow, so while it is good for treating uterine problems, those who have heart conditions or who are pregnant should be careful of this resin. Initial trials have shown that chewed myrrh can reduce blood glucose levels (but don’t take it with your diabetes meds, as your blood sugar may dip drastically low).

As a balm, it treats dry, cracked skin, and soothes sores, helping scars to fade. It causes the skin to contract, and so can be used to help the scalp keep a firm grip on hair follicles, or on the gums to help keep them firm around the teeth.

When burned, myrrh’s calming scent helps to center the mind and body, opening the spiritual pathways. Myrrh was used in embalming mummies and the dead were often treated with it before being wrapped in their winding cloths, probably as a way to cover the scent of a decaying body before interment.

So, the three gifts of the Magi were not just randomly chosen items. All three items would have been good for promoting good health and spirituality, as well as being very expensive. I’ll see you all in just a few hours to report on words, weight, and weather.

Oh, and HAPPY CHRISTMAS!!!!!!!!!!!