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In the Bible three wise men travelling from afar to attend the birth of Jesus carry with them Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh as gifts for the holy child. These three magical substances have long been considered important symbols of great wealth, spiritual purity and eternal life and there are many good reasons for this.

Gold is a precious metal revered by many cultures, much fought over and now forming the basis of our global monetary system. Gold never tarnishes and has the properties of being very safe to use. It is biologically benign. It does not corrode. It is unaffected by moisture, oxygen or ordinary acids. It is one of the most efficient conductors of electricity. Its density enables it to be seen under electron microscopes. And though virtually indestructible, it is a soft metal, easy to work with, shape, flatten or draw out into microscopic strands. Medically it is used in surgery to patch damaged blood vessels, nerves, bones and membranes, in cancer treatments and to clear coronary arteries. Gold-coated lasers are used for inoperable heart conditions, tumors and healing wounds on the battlefield. Colloidal gold is believed to be helpful for arthritis and mental alertness. Gold is a common ingredient in expensive, anti-aging serums having been used for centuries as an elixir of life and giver of eternal youth.

Frankincense or Olibanum is the resin from the tree Boswellia Carteri or Thurifera which is native to Arabia and Somalia. Used by the Egyptians in the embalming process and by Jewish and Christian religions as part of their traditional incense. Frankincense has amazing properties it is disinfectant and antibacterial, wound healing and an immune tonic which opens up the lungs to help bronchitis. It has an anti-aging effect on skin cells strengthening gums, hair roots, toning and lifting skin. Frankincense has been known to heal scars, stretch marks and after marks of boils, acne and pox. Frankincense essential oil is a fantastic component in skin creams for dry or mature skin.

Myrrh is also the resin from a tree, Commiphora Myrrha, native to Egypt. Myrrh is antimicrobial, antiviral, antifungal, antiseptic, digestive, heals wounds, is expectorant, anti inflammatory and anti catarrhal. It stimulates the circulation and is an immune tonic. North African peoples have traditionally chewed the resin to keep teeth and gums healthy. Myrrh has been found in modern times to have a healing effect on the mucous membranes of the mouth. When made into a tincture it is a fabulous ingredient for mouthwash.

So we can see why Frankincense, Myrrh and Gold have been precious to our ancestors and held sacred for such a long time!

If you are pregnant or have specific health problems always seek advice from a qualified health practitioner before using any essential oils or herbal medicines.

Article for Hibiscus Matters
06-12-10
Catherine Opie
DIP CVM, Cert GHM, Cert BCHC trained in the UK and worked for a British producer of herbal and natural products in their clinics and dispensaries. She has been a regular contributor to Healthy Options magazine, Hibiscus Matters, The Marketplace Waiheke and is the co founder of NZ natural health company Balanced Energy.

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