Enemies (Buffy, Season Three, Ep 17)


This is the episode in which the Mayor tries to steal Angel’s soul with the aid of an Arabic speaking demon (whose spell invokes yet more power demons, curiously enough).  The spell was unsuccessful — or rather, the spell was never actually cast, since the demon owed a debt to Giles, who acted as the demon’s marriage broker.

Nevertheless, Angel had to act the part in order to convince Faith that he was on her side.  On the way to see the Mayor, Faith and Angel come across Xander.  Xander and Angel have never gotten along, and the need to act soul-less gives Angel the perfect excuse to shut Xander up with a punch to the face.  Angel’s line about never liking Xander was delivered in a perfectly ambiguous manner — was he acting, or not?

Xander, however, immediately assumes that Angelus, the Evil Angel, is back and goes to warn the Scoobies.  We see him nursing a bruise on his forehead for the rest of the episode.

Bruises.  A common and simply treated injury.

It’s too bad Xander didn’t try some moxa.  Surely the Magic Shop he frequents as the errand-boy carries various types of mugwort — California has its own native variety, in fact.  Thread moxa, placed along the edges of a bruise and burned down to the skin works well, and I’ve seen moxa poles clear bruises as if the pole were a giant eraser. For larger or deeper bruises — such as a horse bite to the glutes — cone moxa can be just as effective and penetrate closer to the bone. It may take more than one cone of moxa to relieve the pain and reinvigorate the blood, but blowing on the moxa — the usual dispersive technique — is not necessary.  Don’t let the cones burn all the way to the skin.

As for herbal medicine, the well known martial art herbal mixture San Huang San is quite effective for hot type acute swellings. Grind equal amounts of da huang, huang bai, and huang qin; pu gong ying, hong hua, and zhi zi. Apply using egg white as a binding medium. Other binding media include green tea, pine resin (just make sure not to apply resin over hair or you’ll get a nice waxing when you go to remove the plaster), and safflower oil.

The Da Huang and Hong Hua act to invigorate the blood; Da Huang is also cooling.  Huang Qin and Huang Bai take care of swelling and cool the area.  Zhi Zi is cooling and having a resonance with the TW, brings source qi to the area and helps clear out stagnation.  Pu Gong Ying prevents the formation of toxins in the area, and helps heal sores.

Repeat twice a day.  While the powder can be pre-ground and stored in an airtight container, it should not be pre-mixed with oil or it will lose some of its effectiveness.  This, at least, has been the clinically reported experience of several patients.

As always, this post is for educational purposes only.  Please check with a qualified practitioner before trying these remedies at home.

Happy Slayage!

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