Miraculous Healing at Slug Lake

Novinite Insider » DESTINATIONS | August 24, 2007, Friday // 00:00| Views: | Comments: 0
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Bulgaria: Miraculous Healing at Slug Lake Photo by Sofia Photo Agency

People all over the world have always been seeking an alternative of the common medicine to cure all kinds of diseases. And while some look for it in herbal drug stores and visit alternative medicine specialists, some go to a very special place in Bulgaria.

By Lora Petrova

There is a small swamp-like lake near the Bulgarian village of Beli Vir. Local inhabitants call it Syulyuk Gyol - the lake of the slugs. The lake water is boiling with leeches, which are believed to cure all kinds of illnesses ranging from hypertension through chronic migraine to rheumatism, anaemia and eczema.

The slugs lake is just a couple of kilometres above the village, but one can get there very difficult and might easily get lost.

The legend has it that some 500 years ago the guests of a wedding, together with the newly-weds and their families drowned in the lake. The wedding-guest were walking in the area during winter and did not notice they were walking on water. The ice cracked and all the people drowned. The healing leeches appeared after that.

The natives use them for hundreds of years. The leeches are most powerful against diseases during pumpkins blossoming in May and June.

The leeches' fame has already crossed Bulgaria's borders and people from Turkey, The Netherlands and Germany have started visiting the magic pond every year. But they cannot take the curative animals home because there is a belief that they lose their abilities if they are taken away from the place.

"The vermin suck only the bad blood of the body. If you are healthy they do not even want to bite you," the 73-year-old Selver told me. She comes here every now and then to get relief of her back and leg pains.

She takes several of the animals and places them on her back, explaining that you only feel a slight pinch when the leech gets stuck on the skin. The vermin suck blood for 10 or 20 minutes, then their bodies grow three or four times their initial size and they drop. "When this happens, you have to take the leech back in the water saying �let the sickness stay here'," Selver continues.

To finish the remedial ritual, people tear small piece of their clothes and tie it to some of the trees in the nearby woods, hoping they have been cured.
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