Dittany of Crete:
Spirit manifestation, love, solar magic, venus magic, adds potency to most incense blends.
Dittany (the name probably comes from Dicte, the mountain range) grows wild only on the Aegean isle of Crete. Ever since ancient times, it has been prized as an aromatic, medicinal, and culinary herb.
Magickal Uses of Dittany of Crete
Textual references to Dittany are rare, despite its centuries of use. Agrippa mentions it only as a Solar herb, alongside the more familiar Ginger, Cedar, and Marigold.
In European folk magick, Dittany is regarded as a consummate love herb. Feeding it to your intended is supposed to cause them to fall irretrievably in love with you. Sicilian women, according to an anecdote from Catherine yronwode, use Dittany to work “sorcerous love magic.” Some spells with Dittany may have been passed down through the oral traditions of Italian folk magick. Still, the herb was virtually unheard-of in the Americas until at least the 1940s.
In Western ceremonial magick, Dittany of Crete is regarded as one of the best herbs for causing spirits to manifest. Dittany is burned in generous amounts and the spirits appear in the smoke. Aleister Crowley describes such working in Magick Without Tears. He, in turn, refers to Helena Blavatsky, who once named Dittany as the most magickal of herbs. It is also used to create a favourable environment for trance work and astral projection.
Spells and Formulas with Dittany of Crete
Dittany of Crete is used for astral projection, spirit evocation, and manifestation. Burn it over charcoal, mixed with Sandalwood incense or Frankincense for protection.
From Scott Cunningham: "The juice of the dittany drives away venomous beasts, so smear some onto your body before venturing out where they live.” This is probably related to the earlier belief that Dittany of Crete cures snakebites.
Add to love incenses to catch an astral vision of your future partner. You may substitute Dittany in love spells that call for Oregano. (Because the Oregano was probably substituted for Dittany of Crete.)
Correspondences of Dittany of Crete
I will take a page from Agrippa and 777 and assign this sun-loving perennial to the Sun. A secondary planetary correspondence would be Venus, especially when the herb is in flower.