Note from Cayce.com – Similar looking plants can easily be mistaken for Ragweed. Identifying Ragweed properly is essential to producing the tincture and to relieving allergic reaction. The tonic can be purchased as Ragweed Tincture from Baar Products.
By Elaine Hruska
As I work on this article, the hay fever season is in full swing, with local TV meteorologists dispensing daily updates on its main culprit: ragweed. For several weeks now this plant’s pollen count has registered in the upper ranges, making a number of people miserable with watery eyes and runny noses. This excessive pollen release, depending upon where one lives, may begin in June and end in October, prompting in sensitive individuals the allergic reaction we call hay fever.
The term hay fever is really a misnomer: it isn’t actually a fever and it is not really caused by hay. It’s defined as seasonal allergic rhinitis, meaning inflammation of the eyes, nose, and upper respiratory tract created by an allergic reaction to pollens and some molds. The plant, of course, most likely to cause hay fever, particularly if you live in the U.S., is ragweed.
Getting Acquainted with Ragweed
While not often mentioned in herb books, ragweed has nearly 100 references in the Cayce readings, in connection with a variety of diseases and ailments: appendicitis, catarrh, diabetes, digestion, epilepsy, intestinal problems, liver and kidney incoordination, nephritis, pelvic disorders, psoriasis, and rheumatism, as well as hay fever.
As a Hay Fever RemedyThe plant, a member of the aster family, is characterized by small, greenish flowers located on the upright stem tips at the plant’s top. Having small upper leaves and lower large, lacy leaves, ragweed proliferates easily and is considered an invasive herb.
The two most prevalent species are Ambrosia artemisiifolia, which grows about 2 to 3 feet in height, and Ambrosia trifida, which can grow up to 6 feet; either one may be utilized for healing. Once a plant takes root it maintains its location and thrives well under most conditions. In the Cayce readings only the leaves are used. The green leaves can be chewed or taken in a tea as a stimulant, an eliminant, or an intestinal purifier. It is also an ingredient in formulas for various tonics, generally for digestive or intestinal conditions. If ragweed is taken internally before the onset of the ragweed season, the usual reactions may be prevented.
On July 18, 1943, a 41-year-old woman, a hay fever sufferer, asked Cayce several questions about her condition. In addition to advising her to go to a drier climate and a higher altitude, Cayce also noted that the cause of hay fever is not the same for everyone. Being told that her particular condition was derived from ragweed, she asked:
“Q. Since hay fever is usually caused by an allergy, can the Forces describe the particular allergy which is causing this condition to this body, so that the body can stay away from it?”
“A. As just indicated, smell one of the weeds [ragweed], try it on self and see! But if you chew it as it is growing, you may relieve yourself from it! It’s a good eliminant, too! It is one of the best eliminants with a vegetable base. But it must be chosen very young, and the leaves alone chewed – but don’t spit it out because it is bitter! It’s not poisonous, and it is a good eliminant, and it will relieve the allergy – or eliminate that causing the hay fever for this particular body! For it is not caused by the same in all.” – Cayce
To other individuals Cayce suggested using ragweed as a tea or making it into a tonic. Here are directions given in one reading for the compounding of a simple home tonic:
“Thus we would prepare the compound in this manner: Take a pint cup, gather the tender leaves of the weed, don’t cram in but just fill level. Put this in an enamel or a glass container and then the same amount (after cleansing of course, don’t put dirt and all in but put in same amount by measure) of distilled water, see? Reduce this to half the quantity by very slow boiling, not hard but slow boiling, strain and add sufficient grain alcohol as a preservative. Begin and take it through the fifteen days of July and the whole of August, daily, half a teaspoonful each day.” – Cayce
Today the tonic can be purchased as Ragweed Tincture, packaged in a 4-ounce bottle. It [Ragweed Tincture] is available in some health food stores or from the official worldwide supplier of Cayce health care products (Baar.com). One to two teaspoons of this dark green liquid is placed in a little water and drunk in the morning and in the evening. It tastes vaguely like freshly cut grass or a bitter plant. Strange that its generic name ambrosia (which in the readings is used interchangeably with ragweed) is considered a food of the gods in Greek mythology. Perhaps the ancients had a clue to its value which remains hidden in modern times.
Consider this comment from Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), American essayist, philosopher, and poet:
“What is a weed? A plant whose virtues have not yet been discovered.” (Fortune of the Republic, 1878)
While many hay fever sufferers would probably endorse the readings’ description of ragweed as “the most hated of the weeds” (Cayce), Emerson’s definition cannot be considered as applying to ragweed in the Cayce readings since it is certainly valued and not neglected as a helpful remedy.
On September 12, 1971, Mr. H.D.A. of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, sent a grateful letter to the A.R.E. describing his experience with ragweed after reading an article in The A.R.E. Journal (July 1971). [The article, “Blessed Ragweed – The Most Hated of Weeds” by Robert O. Clapp, is included as supplementary material in the Circulating File: “Hay Fever, Vol. 1.”]
“I am 40 years old and have suffered from a lifetime affliction of ragweed allergy. I have never bothered taking the troublesome shots, preferring to suffer through the 6-8-week ragweed season…
So the hay fever season for me was one of staying in where the air conditioning did some filtering of pollen from the air and taking endless [over-the-counter] antihistamine pills and nose sprays and generally suffering through the agonizing symptoms of hay fever. Some antihistamine pills seem to help, some don’t, some seem to wear out on their effectiveness, and anyway they can only be taken for short lengths of time because extreme drowsiness sets in after two or three days straight on the pills. I always had to curtail swimming during August because the chlorinated water was too abrasive on the red, swollen, and sensitive nostrils and eyes. But thanks to the Cayce readings… this year was quite different.
I began eating the leaves of the ragweed plant immediately upon reading the article on July 7, 1971, and continued through September 11, 1971. True to the Cayce readings I found the ragweed leaves to be quite bitter in taste on the first occasion but I didn’t mind it after that. Also true to the Cayce readings a little overindulgence caused some marked differences in assimilation and elimination. But the beautiful thing about it was that throughout August no hay fever symptoms ever developed. This year I rode my bicycle up and down roads which were lined with ragweed and also walked through woods and pastures which were thick with ragweed. (Iowa has the highest ragweed pollen counts of any location in the nation.)…
Looking back over this past hay fever season it now seems about unbelievable to me; a cure for hay fever is miraculous.” (Circulating File, “Hay Fever, Vol. 1”)
The healing power of nature is obvious in Mr. H.D.A.’s successful experience with ragweed. Yet in certain sensitive individuals caution should be noted, since allergies are complex conditions with abnormal reactions. The taking of ragweed might trigger uncomfortable symptoms, so it is prudent to be mindful that some allergic reactions might occur. Nevertheless, ragweed can help to alleviate a number of symptoms, as was noted earlier, and can, therefore, be a valuable “weed” to help strengthen our body’s immune system.
Elaine Hruska is a therapist at the A.R.E. Houston Spa and former teacher at the Cayce/Reilly* School of Massotherapy. This article is reprinted with permission by Venture Inward Newsletter, Virginia Beach, VA.
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