Anyone who performed in the school or church nativity play as a child will remember the glittering fabulosity of the gifts from the magi: gold, frankincense and myrrh. We were in awe of those foil and tissue paper boxes; cynical me would probably believe it signified the consumers we were destined to become but for now, let’s just imagine that it is because everyone loves an opulent surprise!
Gold is an obvious choice of present for a king from a king, right? Any well-read kid would recognise that as a power-statement staple (just look at Instagram) and I am sure that (empty) boxes of Terry’s All Gold chocolates were (and continue to be) widely used as an appropriate prop (although possibly overtaken in recent times by empty cartons of One Billion).
However, I must pause here to slowly applaud the creative parent who one year sprayed a lump of polystyrene with gold craft paint. That was pretty impressive, to be fair; until the sheen started to rub off and the ‘nugget’ began to disintegrate. By the time their kid arrived at the stable he was as high as a kite and looked more like he was auditioning for a scene in Goldfinger.
Thankfully, I had a vague grasp of what frankincense was although I probably attributed it way more supernatural properties than I should have done; convincing myself that if I hung around, Indiana Jones style, in the dangerous wake of a giant censer long enough, I would inhale immortality. As an adult, the irony of that is not lost on me.
I don’t think I really knew what myrrh was but I am sure that I fancied it was some kind of luxurious, scented oil filled with magical properties and presented in a delicate, be-jeweled vial (which I did think must have been murder to carry safely across the desert on the back of a camel). Seems I wasn’t far off with the myrrh but there were some things I remained oblivious to.
Every year, we chorused innocently and enthusiastically along with that well-known Christmas carol “We Three Kings” – paying particular attention to the emphasis on the “O” during the “O star of wonder…” section as I recall – and really not understanding what we were all singing about in the slightest:
Myrrh is mine: Its bitter perfume
Breaths a life of gathering gloom.
Sorrowing, sighing, bleeding dying,
Sealed in the stone-cold tomb…
“We Three Kings of Orient Are”
John H. Hopkins (1857)
Wait a minute – sealed? In a what, now? A tomb? That doesn’t seem very Christmassy all of a sudden!
It seems that the ‘gifts’ chosen by these three wise men are generally thought not to be just an homage to Jesus’ status as the newborn king of the world (10 points if you thought of the Titanic movie when you read that) but also intended to foreshadow His ultimate fate (speaking of which – I just want to say that there was definitely room for two people on that door…)
Now that I have excelled myself this Christmas 2017 by managing to bring shades of death and disaster into such a joyous celebration, I should probably move on to the central point of this blog (which is much less gruesome but just as stimulating – I promise!)
Whatever reasons the three, wise sages from the mysterious east conceived of to bring a tiny baby such curious gifts, there’s no doubt that all three carry astonishing properties that we make use of today. Here then is an overview of the Temple Spa products that contain the magi’s gifts in their ingredients, for you to use as a guide for a thoughtful, Nativity-themed gift this Christmas.
GOLD gives skin a luminous and glowing look, it helps to moisturise skin and reduce hyperpigmentation. It can help to stimulate skin and increase skin’s elasticity giving a healthy and radiant complexion. You can find it in Temple Spa’s Truffle Family of products, which include: TRUFFLESQUE, SKIN TRUFFLE, TRUFFLE NOIR, BODY TRUFFLE, EYE TRUFFLE and TRUFFLELIXIR.
FRANKINCENSE produces a sense of calm and deepens breathing to induce the feeling of peace, relaxation and satisfaction. It also possesses healing properties that help treat dry cracked skin, scars and wounds and reduce the appearance of blemishes, stretch marks and dark spots. Frankincense promotes regeneration of cells and as a powerful astringent it helps protect skin cells, strengthening, toning, tightening and lifting skin. It also defends against acne and the signs of ageing including wrinkles and sagging skin. Temple Spa use frankincense in SIESTA FOREVER, DRIFT AWAY, REPOSE, DUVET, SOLE BALM and AAAHHH!
MYRRH offers anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, decongestant, expectorant anti-oxidant, calming and relaxing elements that lift the mood and promote inner peace; it is particularly beneficial for dry skin and those troublesome, winter respiratory issues.
If you have a new mum (or mum to be) to buy for this Christmas then the gorgeous SIESTA FOREVER candle contains both frankincense and myrrh and comes already boxed so all you have to do it top off with a gold bow for an unusual nativity-themed present!
Alternatively (and this works for anyone – even the lads) I would definitely tip a trio of TRUFFLESQUE, SIESTA FOREVER and DRIFT AWAY for a Christmas gift fit to be delivered by kings (well complimentary express delivery at least) for making the recipient feel truly anointed. Yes (here’s the punchline) you should myrrh on the side of caution this season and give the gift of the wise – Temple Spa.
Whatever you do choose and however you celebrate, though – have a wonderful season; love, be loved and feel loved.
All together now:
O Star of wonder, star of night
Star with royal beauty bright…
“We Three Kings of Orient Are”
John H. Hopkins (1857)