Common names: Whiskey, Chokecherry, Jamberry, Wild Cherry, Bird Cherry, Chuckleplum, Sloe Tree, Bitter-berry, Cabinet Cherry, Chuckleyplum
Indication: Overly Critical
Works to heal the heart and the words of one who lashes out at others with harsh words and criticism.
It is not uncommon to be sarcastic or to criticize another person once in awhile. However continual negativity and harsh judgment are neither constructive nor are they an acceptable way to face others and the world. Negative thoughts and words stem from inner anger and hurt. It could be that you are expressing your own wounding experienced by a parent or caretaker or that you are frustrated with yourself for things you have or have not done. Anyway you look at it though, spewing your black venom into the world and hurting others with its poison is a trait that needs to be addressed and harnessed.
A little kidding around and good fun teasing is one of the joys of a healthy relationship. However, it is important to understand that sarcasm is often just thinly veiled mean humor. You are not just being funny. You are being funny at someone else's expense.
It's time to take a good long look into the sadness and pain that is the source of your discontent. Are you overworked and underappreciated? Did you lose someone dear to you and now feel very alone? Did someone hurt you in ways that you believe you just can't forgive? Or do you lack self esteem and feel like you have to put others down to feel in control?
The thing about Nature is it doesn't judge or criticize you...ever. You are so much more than you think you are and your words are very, very powerful. The essence of Choke Cherry helps you to return to the innocence of the true heart, unwounded and free to start over. You no longer need to let the world know that you are grouchy or in pain if you instead address your pain. What is truly interesting is that once you learn to speak to others with love and compassion you will receive the same back many fold. Love, it turns out, just works that way.
For many Native American tribes of the Northern Rockies, Northern Plains, and boreal forest region of Canada and the United States, chokecherries were the most important fruit in their diets. The bark of chokecherry root was once made into a herbal syrup used for colds, fever and stomach maladies. The inner bark of the chokecherry, as well as red osier dogwood, or alder, was also used by natives in their smoking mixtures, known as kinnikinnick, to improve the taste of the bearberry leaf. The chokecherry fruit can be used to make a jam, jelly, or syrup, but the bitter nature of the fruit requires sugar to sweeten the preserves.
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