Entheogenic Plants and Their Gods

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The European poisonous plants – especially the entheogens – are all associated with powerful deities. Thor has Henbane [to make you fly], Tyr has Wolvesbane [to transform into a wolfman], and Odin has the Little Red Man [mushroom portal to the elf kingdom], and so forth. Hela, the Goddess of Death, is believed to live in Belladonna, also known as the Beautiful Lady or Sorcerer's Berry.

Belladonna has been used for journeying to the Underworld, although it can easily kill. She is used in spells to speak to the Dead, usually bound around something. Descended from the "wheaten wheel" or Sun Door of the yupa pole used in the Vedic ascension ceremony, this became the pagan Wheel of Life known today as the Christmas wreath.

Another one of Hela’s dangerous plants is Hellebore (Helleborus niger), also known as Helle berry and, in post-Christian times, as the Christmas Rose. This plant has been carried for powers of invisibility and believed to take away madness.

Ivy isn’t one of Hela's plants per se – it actually belongs to her sister-brother Jormundgand, the Midgard Serpent. However, as Ivy has been grown in many graveyards and is often associated with cemeteries, Belladonna and Hellebore are sometimes incorporated into wreaths with Holly and Ivy and placed on doors to appease the Dead and ward off evil spirits.