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Observations placeholder

Witch's ointment



Type of Spiritual Experience


In 1960 Will Erich Peukert, a famous German folklorist, tried the following Della Porta recipe  - presumably without the baby fat -  and said he had the same result the Italian scientist wrote about.  He flew.
The reason it may work is because by poisoning themselves, their metabolic rate goes so low from the effects of shock, they are hovering on the brink of death.  If it is already low [cold complexion and low metabolism] then the effects will be that much greater.

Not something you should ever try at home!! [or anywhere]

Incidentally, Idries Shah says the 'baby' is mandrake

A description of the experience

Giovan Battista della Porta  - Magia naturalis

I will tell what I learned from those women, they take grease of babies and they cook with water in a copper vase, letting condense it at the bottom of the saucepan, then they take it and mix with Elaeoselinum, Wolf’s bane and poplar leaves and soot. Or, another recipe, Water parsnip (Sium latifolium), Acorus calamus, silverweed (Potentilla), bat blood :) solanum somniferum and oil, then we should anoint all the part of the body until make it red, and the active principles can enter the skin. So they believe they are flying in the air in a night under the Moon and parties and music and beautiful boys…..

These effects are not the same for all the women, but especially for the melancholic temperament, who has a cold complexion and with a low metabolism: they feel things they saw in their dreams as it was the reality, and they tell in the same way.

The source of the experience

Magician other

Concepts, symbols and science items




Science Items

Activities and commonsteps