Special Insight into the Magi's Gifts
With the Christmas season upon us, I thought it an ideal time to share a little about essential oil blends and why many times we prefer a blend over a single oil.
We see an ideal blend of botanicals in the gifts the magi brought to Jesus. "And when they had come into the house, they saw the young Child with Mary His mother, and fell down and worshiped Him. And when they had opened their treasures, they presented gifts to Him: gold, frankincense, and myrrh." (Matthew 2:11) Some researchers believe that the "gold" mentioned here may refer to infused fir oil since it is mentioned elsewhere in ancient literature as "gold." Another possibility is that "gold" referred to golden flower known as helichrysum, which is derived from the Greek words helisso (to turn around) and chrysos (gold).
Now for the fascinating chemistry lesson. Chemically speaking, Fir and Frankincense are mostly monoterpenes and Helichrysum as a significant amount of esters, which are, relatively speaking, smaller molecules. Myrrh is mostly sesquiterpenes, which are larger molecules.
Smaller molecules (Helichrysum, Fir and Frankincense) evaporate faster, are absorbed rapidly, metabolized quickly and have delicate fragrances.
Larger molecules (Myrrh) are absorbed more slowly and last longer.
When oils with small, light molecules are blended with oils that are large, heavy molecules, the fragrance of the oil with the light molecule lasts longer and they remain in the body longer when absorbed. This is called "fixing" the oils. The effectiveness of essential oils can be enhanced by combining them with this in mind.
If indeed the magi brought this special blend of botanicals as gifts to the newborn King, it demonstrates an ideal combination. In ancient and Biblical times, herbs and infused oils were the primary source of medicine used to prevent infection, disease and plague. They were used for headaches, grief, pregnancy, childbirth as well as easing death.
Myrrh is a favorite fixing oil from ancient times. It has a gentle fragrance and doesn't interfere with other fragrances. It is also used in ointments for therapeutic value and to keep any other small-molecule oils around and help them be more effective longer. In this special blend, the larger molecules of Myrrh work to keep the smaller molecules of Frankincense and Fir around so that each oil can deliver maximum benefit when inhaled or absorbed.
Properties of the Magi Blend
Frankincense - is considered a holy anointing oil in the Middle East and has been used in religious ceremonies for thousands of years. It is uplifting, eases stress, anxiety and despair and thought to "cure every ill known to man." It is anti-tumoral, an immune stimulant and muscle relaxant and has been used for depression, cancer, respiratory infections, inflammation and to boost immune response.
Balsam Fir - is anti-coagulant and anti-inflammatory. It is refreshing, uplifting, soothes muscles and pain and is used for throat/lung/sinus infections, fatigue, arthritis, rheumatism, urinary tract infections, scoliosis, sciatica and reduces cortisol (the death hormone) production.
Myrrh - is anti-microbial and referenced throughout the Old and New Testaments. It has one of the highest levels of sequiterpienes, which is a class of compounds known to have direct effects on the hypothalamus and pituitary glands responsible for activating hormone and immune response and on the limbic system (the center of memory and emotions). Myrrh is mentioned in one of the oldest known medical records (Ebers Paprus dating from 16th century BC). It is a powerful anti-oxidant, anti-tumoral, anti-inflammatory, anti-viral, anti-parasitic and analgesic/anesthetic. Myrrh has been used for diabetes, cancer, hepatitis, fungal infections (Candida, ringworm, eczema), tooth/gum issues and numerous skin issues.
Our family and the crew here at HEO wants to express to each of you the thankfulness and blessing we feel in getting to know you. May the Lord continue to bring you health and healing through His marvelous gift of essential oils.
Linda and the HEO crew