Enter the Sanguine Season

Spring has arrived: although it’s hard to believe it on this dull, cold, misty morning.
But the Sun went into Aries at 09:37 GMT yesterday. The Vernal Equinox is when the days and night are of equal length and when we enter into Spring. It is also the beginning of the astrological year, Aries being the first sign of the Zodiac.
And hasn’t it been a long, long winter? The lockdown continues and here in the UK we’ve had the coldest winter for 25years. Yey! But nature moves on. It may seem there is no end in sight, but there will be an end in sight-eventually.

As we move from Winter/Phlegmatic season to Spring/Sanguine time we change elements from Water to Air.

A jolly Sanguine with his lute: not sure what the goat is about….

Sanguine was the favourite temperament of the Ancients, warm and moist it gives the person a sunny (fire) and chilled (water) disposition. These are the friendly, laid back, sociable people, who don’t sweat the small stuff, and whose glass is always half full.

Maurice Messigue (14.12.1921. 16h38. Bergerac France) was the classic Sanguine personality. He was a famous French herbalist who was born in one of the most beautiful regions of France (Sanguines often live in beautiful places). His father was the local herbalist and Maurice spent an idyllic childhood collecting herbs with his father.

When he was 11 his father died and he was sent away to school. This was a tough time as he was ridiculed and friendless (the worse experience for a Sanguine is to have no friends). He survived by remembering happy days with his father and re-creating the countryside in his imagination (Sanguines are the archetypal glass half full people) they bounce back quickly from setbacks.

In 1944 during the second world war he was put in the STO (service du travail obligatoire) which released one French prisoner for every 3 Frenchmen sent to Germany for forced labour. Messegue was put on the train to Germany, he entered in one door and immediately left through another and escaped (Sanguines are quick thinkers, freedom lovers and pretty cheeky). A fugitive, he joined the Maquis (the French resistance) and fought for the liberation of France.

After the war, he settled in Nice and began working as a herbalist. Sanguines are known for their genial, friendly nature. He treated the famous actress Mistinguette, who instead of paying for treatment introduced him to her influential friends (Sanguines are lucky, or make their own luck, being open to ideas). Messegue claimed to have treated King Farouk of Egypt, Winston Churchill and poet Jean Cocteau among others, (Sanguines love glamour and the rich and powerful) while at the same time treating up to a third of his patients for free (Sanguines are generous and mix with everyone).

It was illegal to practice herbal medicine in France and he was taken to court over twenty times (the law is a Sanguine activity). In a classic Sanguine way, he used the publicity from these court cases to generate patients (self-promotion is Sanguine’s super- power). In his last court case, he claimed over twenty thousand letters were sent to the judge in his defence (Sanguines have great networks and know how to use them).

Messegue used mainly hand and foot baths (the hands are ruled by Gemini) to treat his patients and he always used his own herbs. He wrote several best-selling books (how Sanguines love to teach and write) and his prose is full of sunlight, hope and optimism (all Sanguine traits). He never mentions his health, from which we can assume he had a robust Sanguine constitution. Taken from Traditional Western Herbal Medicine which shows how I calculate the Temperament from the birth-chart.

The Sanguine planet is Jupiter. Jupiter rules the liver, which is the temperament’s biggest weakness. Because they enjoy the good things in life, they often eat and drink to excess, eventually their body feels the effects. As the liver’s job is to process food and drink (among other things) years of overdoing things can weaken and exhaust the liver. The liver is the largest organ in the body and amazingly is capable of regeneration (how very Jupetarian), my ex-yoga teacher grew her liver back after a partial transplant. Our livers are under a constant assault from bad food (chemicals, pesticides, junk) too much alcohol, drugs, environmental pollution, stress, etc. etc. that it becomes congested and sluggish.
Felling ‘liverish’ is an old fashioned way to describe this. Slow digestion, nausea, bloating, food poisoning or suceptability to infections, as well as irritability, anger and depression can all be signs of liver stagnation. Of course Mother Nature provides remedies for the liver, many of which are ruled by Jupiter. The one that is just flowering is of course Dandelion.

Jupiter Bonatus

The root is collected before it begins to flower, (about now depending on how cold it is) and the flowering parts, (leaves and flowers) can be picked at any time. The root acts more strongly on the liver, while the flowering parts work on the kidneys and lungs.
A really nice blood cleanser (Spring cleanse) is equal parts:
Dandelion root/herb
Nettle leaves

Cleavers Galium aparine

I hope to be teaching this material at the Greek Island Summer School in May (but who knows?) details here‘ register your interest by emailing me at elisabeth_brooke@hotmail.com

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