While doing research for a lecture last year, I was reading a lot about ancient Egyptian magickal herbalism, especially about their use of Mandrake fruits in ritual and ceremony. They were often combined with Blue Waterlily, Opium Poppies, and Cornflower, which surprised me a bit. I have grown these lovely blue flowers in many of our gardens because they are charming and beloved by humans and pollinators, but I never thought of them in the same “league” so to speak as Waterlily, Mandrake, or Poppy. The flowers are edible, and used in teas and other foods, but I haven’t noticed any entheogenic properties whenever I’ve had any.
We ordered some of the flowers and made a Spagyric of them anyway because we were curious about them, and we figured the processing would magnify whatever they had to say. While the Initiatic was in process, I did more research about this plant, and along the way, I really started to feel connected to it and I’m excited to have some to offer you.
Cornflower gets its name from its tendency to grow in grain fields, which is also where poppies are found, a gorgeous combination of flowers that we’re including in our garden this year. It likes the disturbed soil there, which is why these two flowers were the first to show up in the empty battlefields after WWI.
Cornflower’s habitat amongst the grain was known by the ancient Egyptians, who linked it to the resurrection of the slain Osiris, who rises from the underworld with the sprouting grain and is reanimated by the Cornflower. Because of this, Cornflowers symbolize life, fertility, and renewal, and were woven into burial collars, along with Poppies and Blue Waterlily, which also represents resurrection and renewal.
In ancient Rome, the Cornflower was said to have been created by the goddess Flora, who made the flower to memorialize Cyanus, her most devoted follower, who dressed all in the blue we now call Cyan. Because of this, Cornflower is used to increase and show devotion to deities and spiritual beings, and I have enjoyed exploring it for this energy, especially combined with our Hibiscus Initiatic, which enhances this quality.
In a Russian legend, Cornflower was a handsome young man who was lured off by the Fae and transformed to the flower, and this hints at Cornflower’s other common name, Bachelor’s Buttons. This comes from the practice of young men wearing one to signify being single, and Cornflowers have a role in love magick, as well.
The deep blue petals can be made into a magickal ink with many uses, including both for love spells and divination around love and marriage. As a flower and as ink, Cornflower is used in Southern folk magic for keeping peace in the home and returning harmony after difficulty or a fight.
Tea of Cornflowers is traditionally used as an eyewash, and like Clary Sage, it is enhancing to both the physical and etheric sight. This aspect of its intelligence comes together with the ink in its use for automatic writing and scrying practices, as the flower is consumed to enhance psychic insights, which can then be written down in its ink.
In our explorations of the Initiatic, this sacred sight enhancement was very prominent and created an interesting effect. Meditating with my eyes closed, I saw a very clear vision of the room around me, but with blue, swirling energies around the objects there, condensing and becoming brighter around things I had recently interacted with, as if I was seeing my own energy trail move through the room. It reminded me of the sky in “Starry Night” by Van Gogh, who painted Cornflowers both in the field and in still life.
The other prominent effect of our Cornflower Initiatic that we both have experienced is an enhancement of sound, both in perception and energy. It was similar in some ways to our Heimia, feeling like the sound around us was resonating in the chest and heart area, but with the Cornflower, it also coalesced in the mouth, as if wanting to go back out again as voice, and in the hands through a pulsing. The energy moving effects of Calamus would accentuate both of these directions, and we’re working on a new formula with this combination.
In the meantime, we hope you’ll try our new Cornflower Initiatic and let us know how you experience its intelligence!