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Archive for the ‘Parenting’ Category

I am feeling myself emerging from my cocoon with new wings and ideas. New definitions of who I am and what the world is have begun to sprout and soon I will be taking my first flight into unknown territories.

bel fire

Since Beltane night I have been exploring what it is to journey with transformation in mind. All of us evolve and shift our ideas and actions over our life times. Welcoming growth and life-affirming change is needed on a continual basis in order to stay away from the stagnant waters of our soul.

So what have I been doing? Well, let me tell you who I used to be at 13… I was a wild child of the woods, a fierce lover of anyone I could get my hands on and make-believer in the true world of unseen mystery. I sneaked out during summers to see the heat lightning dance above the fields. I stole away to ponds and rivers to write poetry and make my offerings of teenage kisses to nymph queens and kings.

And then I became older (wiser?)… all of the things I thought I was working for came to be: married my perfect man, had our perfect kids and a part of me became paranoid that something that was so wild in me was too impulsive for my comfy home life. But the wildness has never left me- I don’t think it can- it comes out in my laughter, tears, blood and sweat and magic. It reminds me in the thunder’s song as I try to sleep at night. It haunts me until I let it out through my art, my writing, my songs, my fierce fire when I become outraged about a worldly injustice. (Seriously, what is going on out there??)

Facing my fears of wild… Cougars have begun to roam again in Illinois again, too. After over 100 years they are back. The chances of running into one is rare. The chance of being killed by one is even rarer (19 people have been killed in the last 100 years). However, a fear so deep has struck me. I have been finding myself scared to go into the woods alone lately- but my wildness refuses to leave me alone. My body aches to be out among the dense trees- listening to their mysteries. I have decided that to live a life away from the woods is no life for me. So I have studied on how to act if I see a cougar  (don’t make eye contact, walk away slow but never turn your back) and if one tries to attack (act like a crazy wild animal and scream at it). If I end up eaten at least I tried to really live my life how I need to and my body can become part of the woods again.

Oh, so and now I hear news that my county is under a tornado watch….

Here is a sneak peak of some magic I have been working on lately… More info on that soon! Happy 100th post to me!

triangle neck

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prayer pine

Last week my small town farming community experienced a tragic event. A trailer fire broke out during a girls’ slumber party killing 4 girls and a woman. We, as a community, gathered together to help pay for funeral costs and support the families who lost children.

On Monday my heart ached for the students returning to school after spring break who had lost friends and so I did a ritual in honor of those who had crossed and those who were in mourning. I’m sure many people across our area sent prayers in their own way, too.

I anointed a pink candle (for female energy) with lavender oil (calming) and cut some fresh pine branches (renewal) to decorate the base of the candle holder. Songs were sung. Prayers were spoken. Healing energy was sent.

I hope that our community continues to heal and remember. We all are hugging our children a little more often and a little more longer.

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keeper of the fire painting“Keeper of the Fire”

I have met a new love and it is infinite with paint.

Painting has become quite a surprising pleasure for me this year. Compositions of plants, gods, magick, love and desire dance in my head. With each paint stroke, I overcome my self-doubt. With each picture accomplished, I realize my ability to manifest creation.

The White Goddess, Raven and Crone

“Raven and Crone”

If you have been wondering what I have been up to lately, this is it! Magick has become swirled paint alongside my normal busy world of family, kids, school, sabbats and songs. The top picture is going to go on a poetry book I am in the process of getting ready for my store, Twitchy Witchy. The other paintings are currently for sale there, too.

 priestess of the fields

“Red Priestess of the Fields”

Me, being the proud mamma I am, had to share my daughter’s rendition of this:

Aiyana's red priestess

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imbolc 13

Yesterday the kiddies and I did our candle making Imbolc tradition. Out came the dusty candles with drowned or broken wicks and we broke them into little pieces with hammers.  I had a whole pile of half melted, crooked tapers and so we mashed these up too and saved the unused wick parts for the new candles.  After calling it a day, we lit the candles and had  a ritual welcoming the growing light as the seasons get ready to turn. I told them that between now and Ostara signs of spring will start popping up so be on the look out! Offerings of white food and milk were also given to the White Goddess and my six year old made up a song while my toddler and I played bells and rattles.

Saturday Tulie hosted an Imbolc ritual at her big farmhouse and we all had a wonderful time. I wrote a new song for Imbolc/St. Bride’s Day/Candlemas and sang it with my autoharp to help shift the energy into circle casting. We decorated Bride’s Bed with wish-flowers and we drew cards from the wands tarot suit. I received the five of wands which indicated the spark of inner courage. We meditated to the song Fire Prayer and received visions or feelings from Bride. (If you have never heard of this musician I highly, highly recommend checking out her whole Fire Prayer CD!)

The evening was topped off with feasting, singing, chit-chat, laughter and more magic. As the night wore down it was only Tulie, JJ and I left. I felt the urge to dance. JJ felt the urge to drum. Tulie didn’t have a choice… more magic was coming! She began to sing and before we knew it we were all raising energy and invoking the Goddess once more.

As a Mystic, I rely mostly on experience to guide me on my spiritual path. Opening up one’s practice for room for spontaneity welcomes this experience.

Here is text from the Carmina Gadelica about the custom of making Bride’s Bed:

The older women are also busy on the Eve of Bride, and great preparations are made to celebrate her Day, which is the first day of spring. They make an oblong basket in the shape of a cradle, which they call ‘leaba Bride,’ the bed of Bride. It is embellished with much care. Then they take a choice sheaf of corn, generally oats, and fashion it into the form of a woman. They deck this ikon with gay ribbons from the loom, sparkling shells from the sea, and bright stones from the hill. All the sunny sheltered valleys around are searched for primroses, daisies, and other flowers that open their eyes in the morning of the year. This lay figure is called Bride, ‘dealbh Bride,’ the ikon of Bride. When it is dressed and decorated with all the tenderness and loving care the women can lavish upon it, one woman goes to the door of the house, and standing on the step with her hands on the jambs, calls softly into the darkness, ‘Tha leaba Bride deiseal,’ Bride’s bed is ready. To this a ready woman behind replies, ‘Thigeadh Bride steach, is e beatha Bride,’ Let Bride come in, Bride is welcome. The woman at the door again addresses Bride, ‘A Bhride! Bhride thig a stench, tha do leaba deanta. Gleidh an teach dh’an Triana,’ Bride! Bride, come thou in, thy bed is made. Preserve the house for the Trinity. The women then place the ikon of Bride with great ceremony in the bed they have so carefully prepared for it. They place a small straight white wand (the bark being peeled off) beside the figure. This wand is variously called ‘slatag Bride,’ the little rod of Bride, ‘slachdan Bride,’ the little wand of Bride, and ‘barrag Bride,’ the birch of Bride. The wand is generally of birch, broom, bramble, white willow, or other sacred wood, ‘crossed’ or banned wood being carefully avoided. A similar rod was given to the kings of Ireland at their coronation, and to the Lords of the Isles at their instatement. It was straight to typify justice, and white to signify peace and purity–bloodshed was not to be needlessly caused. The women then level the ashes on the hearth, smoothing and dusting them over carefully. Occasionally the ashes, surrounded by a roll of cloth, are placed on a board to safeguard them against disturbance from draughts or other contingencies. In the early morning the family closely scan the ashes. If they find the marks of the wand of Bride they rejoice, but if they find ‘long Bride,’ the footprint of Bride, their joy is very great, for this is a sign that Bride was present with them during the night, and is favourable to them, and that there is increase in family, in flock, and in field during the coming year. Should there be no marks on the ashes, and no traces of Bride’s presence, the family are dejected. It is to them a sign that she is offended, and will not hear their call. To propitiate her and gain her ear the family offer oblations and burn incense. The oblation generally is a cockerel, some say a pullet, buried alive near the junction of three streams, and the incense is burnt on the hearth when the family retire for the night.

~Blessings to All~

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mistletoe king

Father Winter has come upon us here in the Midwest United States. He has been screaming all night in the high winds. He has been flashing through the lightning-bolt-lit blizzard sky. Our first snow of the year, he has come triumphantly on his steed of snow and chariot of ice.

My husband became stranded in a snow drift in middle of the street for four hours last night. A plow truck tried to pull him out but failed. Another plow truck tried to rescue him and leave the car, but it became stuck. Finally someone was able to at least drive by and pick him up, but the highway to our small town was then closed so he spent the night at my sisters.

Once I knew he was safe I praised the gods! The candle I had lit for his safety during those hours was blown out and I got out my god statue and painted him in white with mistletoe on his drum and evergreen on his clothing. I slipped into song and let the restless world pulse through me. A blizzard the night before Yule and the night before some say will be the end of our world, how fitting! I sang for the safety of everyone trying to get home in the snow. I prayed for peace and for the returning of light. The harp was pulled out and other songs were written while my altar glowed of candle light.

In the morning I awoke naturally at 4:30 and sang to Green Tara for compassion on this landmark day. Now the sun is coming up and I will sing with my children as it dawns.   Many Blessings World.

 

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Hathor, goddess of music, is the oldest Egyptian deity depicted in art… Sacred to Hathor and a symbol of her power, the systum was like a miniature temple where the goddess resided… In Egyptian mythology, Hathor is the heavenly cow who nurses the newly dead from her udder. Her pillar-like legs hold up the sky. Her belly is filled with stars. At dusk, the sun, as the hawk Horus, flies into her mouth. She is called Lady of the Stars, Lady of the Sycamore, Mistress of the Desert. She is a goddess of healing and of all things sensual: the touch of a lotus petal, the taste of a pomegranite, the sound of a harp, the scent of musk, the intoxication of red barley beer, the silky fluids of sex.   ~Susan Elizabeth Hale in Sacred Space, Sacred Sound (wonderful book!)

Reading this description of Hathor, I felt like she was already in my life, weaving music sensually into my dreams and magic. And so, she must be honored. This is just my preliminary research on her so I can work a ritual for her properly later. You, the reader, gets to explore her mysteries with me!

Her form has cow ears in ancient art. Some also see the connection of the shape of her head and ears to that as the fallopian tubes and uterus. She is great mother and her temples served as centers of healing, birthing chambers, libraries and sacred bath rituals where incantations were spoke in trance-inducing ways.

She was a sexual goddess and was ritually united with her lover, Horus, every New Year along the Nile. Her golden statues were anointed, fed and dressed, similar to Hindu practices. Myrrh was burned and praises were given in thanks for the fertility of the land. Her cow horns held the Sun God within it’s hold.

Hathor is the “Misteress of the West” because she welcomed the souls of the dead into the afterlife. Both priests and priestess served her, royalty and land folk, too. She was seen as Lover, Wife and Mother and was similar to Aphrodite in many ways. Music, joy, sex, milk… all was connected to Hathor.

If anyone else has information for me, I would love to know it! Egyptian magic is not yet familiar to me.

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Language is what defines our reality. In a postmodernistic view, where reality is subject to everyone’s own perceptions, language helps form our realities and can be different for different groups and individuals.

Words convey symbols. But what one word may convey to one person, can mean something so different to another. (Just think of all the connotations connected to the word “magic”).

It seems that with all religions, everyone has a word for God, but the words themselves do not match.

In fact, I personally think the word “God” is still too limiting to what it is I feel the Infinite Spirit represents. The word God feels so human to me. I once read in a Hindu scripture (can’t think of exact one) that people need a personal view and an impersonal view of God, so all the deities help a person connect to God, as there is a humanistic image of He or She, the impersonal view is called Atman (God within) and Brahman (God outside of ourselves). The goal is realizing that they are identical.  I like this perspective, as do many.

However, the word God, or even Goddess, is still limiting in it’s symbolic form. At least for me. Even if I try to connect to the impersonal God, I still end up imagining this old dude in the sky. Some people have an androgynous form of God they like to connect with, but it is still so human. Here’s the thing… out of all the hundreds names for God, what is it that God really means? What is it that God is?

=

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~LOVE~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

If everyone could just accept this about everyone else’s gods, this would be the start of peace.

If everyone could just place LOVE on their altars, we would have the ultimate ideal for our lives.

LOVE is limitless. It has infinite forms. This is why there are so many deities and ideas of what they are. The world needs so many forms of Love. From the love of creativity to the love of the future generations to allow for death. Love is why we are here. Even if your parents conceived you from what most would deem as loveless sex, you were still conceived because they desired connection.

LOVE IS CONNECTION.

I am not saying I’m giving up on paganism or the God’s. Since love is infinite and we are part of this Infinite energy then there are many forms. Just like there are many, many people born to serve Love in many ways (teachers, musicians, librarians, leaders, garbage truck drivers, mothers, morticians, acrobats, etc…) there are many deities needed to serve Love in many ways  (Allah, Kali, Diana, Jehovah) and yes, many saints and prophets and wise ones (Buddha, Jesus, Krishna, Mother Theresa, You?). And let’s not forget about the animals and plants of this world!

Thus, I am a servant of Love. I am love and you are love.

So Blessed Be

Picture by

http://www.cianellistudios.com/spiritual_paintings.html

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