Some posts I liked:
I found this video on Youtube, and hopefully it will stay up. Its an early documentary on the witches (including Wicca).
My thoughts often wondered to the concept of ‘putting it out there in the Universe’, in order to take advantage of the 3fold law of return. You know, the one that states that whatever energy you put out into the world, will come back three fold. Prayers, chants, wishes, spells, and that sort are all methods used to put it to the Universe.
Sounds perfect. It even sounds fair, doesn’t it?
But Life is not fair. The Universe doesn’t care what you want. This idea might be cynical and depressing, but from my own experiences, the Universe chooses to ignore my prayers, energies, and even efforts to reach my goals.
Arguably, people tend to offer excuses as to why a spell might not work, but that doesn’t explain plain-hard-work doesn’t seem to work for me either.
This doesn’t mean I feel it happens to everyone. Others may find it works for them, but sometimes I feel my bad luck stems from a certain level of Chaos that rules my life where one methods that works for everyone else is likely to blow up in my face. Its like being left handed in a right-handed world.
So I’m curious of my readers out there on their thoughts of this idea of ‘putting it out there’. Does it work for you? Do you agree/disagree? Post in comments.
I’m loving this beautiful spring weather. Taking my dog on regular walks along the river offers ample opportunity to be around nature and enjoy the scent, sights, and sounds of Life.
The meetup group gathers at my house tomorrow (or rather tonight being its so late with typing this up), and we’re celebrating Beltane. Technically, the date is May 1st, but some members couldn’t join at that time. I’m pretty flexible, and I think its more important to accommodate a group than to recognize a specific date.
Beltane, which means Brilliant Fire, celebrates when the herds are moved to their summer pastures. It also marks the season of fertility where sex is prominent, when the god and goddess form a union to bring Life into the world.
Some prominent activities include dancing a May Pole (which represents the phallus), and jumping over or between fires to make wishes and be purified/protected.
I like this idea from cyberwitch.com;
Cakes played a major role in many Beltane customs. A popular one was called the ‘knobby cake’. A cake was baked with nine lumps or ‘knobs’ on it, each one dedicated to a Deity, or Supernatural Being, or to an animal which threatened livestock. Each participant broke off a knob and threw it over the left shoulder, into the fire, saying, for example: "This is for you, gnomes, don’t steal my milk," or "This is for you, fox, spare thou my lambs."
This is fun to do even now. Since we (most of us) don’t live in an agrarian society, we might say something like: "This is for you, (name of employer), spare me my job!" Just remember, when you re-create an old custom, it should have valid meaning today.
Other activities to consider;
Feasting- I love potlucks with friends. Its fun to be surprised with meal choices, and eating food with others provokes its own kind of magick. Mead, sparkling cider or juices, fruit, dairy foods and Irish dishes (being Beltane is an Irish holiday), and anything that makes the day special.
Crafts- Popular crafts for Beltane include May baskets, floral head wreaths, masks, build fairy houses, ribbon wands, dance ribbons, make an altar sized maypole (video), and other May activities (video.
Frolicking- This is a whimsical, magical holiday. Dance in the woods, be playful, join in games, a hike, a picnic, but most important- have fun.
What fun traditions do you enjoy at Beltane? Post in comments
For the Wednesday witch, I wanted to cover Phyllis Curott, an attorney and Wiccan priestess, as well as author.
I’ve read Witch Crafting: A Spiritual Guide to Making Magic , and found she touches upon the heart of magic, the spirituality of the Wiccan belief system. She covers more in the way of true spirituality rather than practice.
Her site, unfortunately, doesn’t offer much other than a list of her works and some back history, but I still felt she was well worth mentioning.
Here is a video on some of her thoughts-
Her views on forgiving someone who hurts us…
Maryland isn’t known for having a white Christmas, but we were graced with the white stuff, and the ice that comes with it.
So I felt my readers might enjoy some spells, rituals, and activities that deal with snow;
Ice spells- Normally, I would need a freezer to make anything icy. Lately we’ve had below freezing, so consider making ice sun catcher, or ice luminaries, or charge your altar candles in the snow. Simply set the candles on the snow and let the energies draw up into them.
You can also light a small candle in the snow, make your wish and infuse with your intention. Let it burn out in the snow. (Don’t leave it unattended, however. So dress warmly, and/or get a small candle).
Check out this page. I particularly like the idea of a snowman as a poppet.
For that matter, consider other mundane things as potential magical items:
Hand warmers- they are easy to make, and used to keep the hands warm in the cold, winter months. Add herbs or oils to add magical properties.
Baths- Taking warm/hot baths are wonderful this time of year. It helps increase the body temperature to help fend off illness, but also makes you warm and cozy. Add salts, herb tea bags, or bath oils to the bath to make them magickal.
Use your imagination and enjoy the cold weather.
Tradition is a funny thing, where you end up doing something that others have done before you, often without question or history. Personally, I feel its important to understand why we do the things we do;
Why do rituals generally start in the East? Its said because that’s where the sun rises. With this idea, you can just as easily cast circle by another direction. My coven used to start in the North because we focused on the elements instead. Earth represent growth, to which all things spring forth.
Why are rituals cast clockwise? Not all of them are, because of the reason that it’s the path of the sun. The sun and moon move clockwise (deosil) , and it’s a symbol of growth and moving forward, while counter-clockwise (widdershin) is banishing or removal.
Why do we celebrate the eight sabbats? This ties into the ancient societies that depended on planting seasons to make the change of seasons. Reading the history of the 8 holidays, and you find cultures spanning across Europe influenced practices. Equinoxes and Solstices tie into planting seasons, and even the hunting season. Other holidays mark times to prepare for seasonal changes or harvest times.
Why is the pentacle used to symbolize Wicca? This arises from Gerald Gardner and the history since his time. Before that, the pentacle was simply a magical symbol of protection against bad spirits. Even Christians wore the pentacle as a symbol of Christ’s five wounds. To Wiccans, it represents Earth, Air, Fire, Water, and Spirit.
There are just a few examples of traditions, but I encourage you to read the history of all aspects of your practice to see why it was done in the first place, and does it still serve today? By challenging this, we can keep traditions alive (with purpose) rather than just follow blindly.
What traditions do you enjoy? Do you know the original purpose of the tradition? Post in comments.
I dealt with severe depression for many years, lamenting my woes by journal and wallowing in my self loathing/grief/misery. When I came to a breaking point, my ‘aha’ moment, I realized I didn’t want to die, but that I wanted the pain to end. To do that, I recognized I must do whatever it takes to get better.
One methods I used was to quit the wallowing.
I refused to give negative thinking any more energy. In my journals, I’d stop myself from griping about all the horrible things in my life, make a tiny mark to indicate such thinking would end, and I forced myself to focus on anything positive. If I had a bad day, I wrote about a positive experience in the past, or something I hoped for in the future.
The change wasn’t sudden or overnight, but change did come. My brain shifted into a stronger, pro-active way of thinking of things. Problems became challenges to be overcome, experiences to make me stronger.
I found my negative thinking was a habit that required some effort to break. Every now and then I’d find myself wallowing again, or bitching about things, and very little focus given to the good things in my life. I remained, however, persistent.
Start journaling (and if you already journal, you can still do this), but find a nice pen, a fresh blank journal, and tell yourself that in this journal, you will not focus your energy on the negative. This is not to say you can’t write about the bad, but you can’t use language stating this as a constant. You need to focus on solutions, or what you’ll learn from this experience.
Dealing with a jerk? Wonderful! Imagine how much better your people skills will be. Dealing with a job loss? Great! Now you can find something you love to do, or a job that offers new experiences, training, potentially new friends, etc.
Change colors or use special pens of unusual shape, or ink. Add drawings, poems, or words of wisdom to help focus on the positive.
I admit it; I’m a total Pinterest addict. You can tell you’re an addict if you intent to look as ‘just a few pins’ and hours later, you’re still clicking through.
However, I find tons of very cool ideas and I wanted to share;
Not only is this a brilliant idea to post a memory on the wall, you could potentially add a small altar inside with stones, feathers, and shells to add a level of sacredness to it.
I thought this was a lovely idea to add an Apache ‘burden basket’ (box, cauldron, etc) which was used to gather berries, twigs, and other things. I like the idea of using it for the purpose of adding your burdens to it, to be burned later, or shared with friends, or both.
I love this idea to make enchanted waters. I’m not sure if I’d use colored pencil but charcoal instead or even chalk. I suppose, however, the color might add to the ‘charm’ of it.
Do you have share-worthy links on your Pinterest boards? Leave in comments below