As I begin this post, I am chewing a smattering of black walnut leaf and letting it speak to me. I can sort of taste a “black” energy in it, one that grounds me and makes me think of decaying matter in the earth’s topsoil.
I have awareness of a whirring in my head, a mild sense of dislocation. There is a sense of some coolness in my lungs that has just appeared as well. Interesting because I have put in my materia medica that black walnut is warming and dry. The dryness is certainly there, of course. I definitely taste astringent under the bitterness. Also a tang of the sour.
I have kept black walnut near to my computer for the past couple of days, along with a couple of other herbs. (Rosemary, yellow dock, scullcap.) The black walnut is the only one in a plastic bag however, the others in brown paper and therefore behind cover. They exude a certain influence that does not rely on the visual, whereas black walnut leaf is “looking” at me as I sit at the Netbook and type.
I sense a witnessing that takes no sides in black walnut’s energy. A curiosity, a perceptiveness without judgment. If I were to give black walnut a Myers-Briggs test, I would assume it to be INTP. Introverted, intuitive, thinking, perceptive. A “Ravenclaw” sort of herb.
I know from lore that if one has had a heartbreak, that a bath with black walnut leaves will cleanse the aura of negative energy. But it’s for extreme measures, when the love was so toxic that only something as powerful and long-lasting as black walnut could work. It’s said that the bath will keep a person alone for 7 years.
That black feeling I had relates to protection. I wrote in a monologue in my 20s about a guy who wore black, and he said “it keeps away all the vampires out there waiting to get into my system.” I sense that black walnut also sends out a “don’t F with me energy,” but it’s quite subtle and packs a delayed punch.
Black walnut… what would you have me know? In your metallic, basic taste, what is the wisdom you wish to share?
The image of the Cosmic Tribe 8 of cups emerges. In the Thoth deck, the 8 of cups relates to “debauch.” In the C.T., it may have a similar theme, but the card shows 8 cups with a sickly green liquid pouring through them. All of the cups have holes below, so the liquid flows through them. I have of late taken the card to indicate releasing of toxins and letting go of poisonous and sickening and sickly crap. It is a card of purification and releasing. I don’t sense it is a vomit-maker. I sense it release more through other processes that act closer to the source.
There is a creeping electric energy that starts in my shoulders and radiates down through my arms. Down through my lungs as well. I feel black walnut has an affinity with the element of Air, perhaps is an herb of the East. Oya dancing a blustery rhumba on the ground under black walnuts branches. Tornadoes perhaps? Perhaps the tree is a sympathetic tornado of a sort, one created in wood and branch.
Could black walnut be vasodilatory? Just a question.
My lungs have become the dominant body part as I sit in his juices. I feel black walnut’s got a lot of masculine energy. Perhaps yin-masculine. I think it was Charles Eisenstein who noted that yin and yang describe a very different set of energies from masculine and feminine, and that when we think of the yang as masculine we’re only seeing one side of that. Yang masculine is the penis, while yin masculine is in the testicle Yin feminine is the ovary and the vulva, while the yang feminine is the process of giving birth. (I paraphrase, but it’s an essay from the Daniel Pinchbeck 2012 anthology from Reality Sandwich essays.)
Black walnut is air, masculine, East, contemplative, dispersive, lung-emphasizing, sparking a desire to communicate spirit-based thought perhaps. It has indicated an interest in assisting me with the screenplay I’ve started. I honor his contributions. I guess he’s also a 5th Chakra sort of herb.
My heart and lungs now feel a sort of peppery energy, that electric thing. I guess if I was to think of a zodiac sign for black walnut it would be Aquarius. Electric, airy, gets things stirred up. Maybe there’s a bit of Capricorn though as well, because it’s much more grounded. A Saturnine sort of Aquarius perhaps?
Lungs and shoulder muscles emphasized right now. These also indicate Gemini and Mercurial influences. However, the Uranus-Saturn of Aquarius “tastes right.”
Just for today, this is what comes to me with black walnut. I will follow up on this some time future.