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I recently had a dream that I visited an old sage and he had what appeared to be devil statues around his house. He honored them so deeply that they began to move on their own accord. I was not scared, but instead in a state of wonder. Why did this wise man have these statues? This was one entity I did not want to work with. And then I found a small white horn among this man’s gardens. I filled it with water and began feeding a Ganesha statue. I went inside and felt like feeding the devil statues. They drank and were surprised at my intent to give love to that I did not completely trust or understand. But that is what my duty is in life- to give love without conditions. Then one began to speak and we had conversations on how he is that which is wild, he represents nature which is neither black or white in ethics.

And then the next day, in my waking life, I came across something that I never thought I would again. When I was a teenager someone tried to kidnap me, twice. I mean these two instances were so extreme that I was seriously lucky to have gotten away. I’ve been suffering from some flash backs of those moments as an adult but I never knew who he was. All I knew was a car and a face. Well, the day after I had the devil dream I was driving around a small town that I used to live by and I saw the car. The same tiny, old, yellow car with Grateful dead stickers and a fake cop light. My heart skipped and I couldn’t believe that after all these years I had a chance to find out who it was- granted the original person never sold this car. I parked my car away from the house and walked around the block to the car to get a better look. The car was parked next to a beat up house and out came a man who began yelling at his dog. I couldn’t believe it- this man look like the man I had seen as a teenager, just aged about 15 years. I wrote down the license plate and address and walked back to my car, trying not to faint. As I drove away the man drove by in his yellow car, as if the universe wanted to doubly make sure I got my confirmation.

I don’t know what I am going to do with this information (it’s much too late to report anything- although I do worry about other kids in the area, but I can’t be 100% sure after 15 years), but I am really glad that the mystery of who this guy was is solved in my mind. There have been many, many people in my life who have done me wrongly. After a while I had eventually forgiven them all. I had found a way to feel compassion for them, even if I chose to no longer have them in my life. But this guy, remained unforgivable in my mind until I saw him again and saw how weak he really was. It is humans who take advantage of the primal powers of nature. Humans are the ones who drain the earth of her blood-oil, who take more gold then they need, who try to dominate the Earth and her creatures, who have weakened hearts that give in to addictions of the body and mind. We have forgotten that we are apart of Nature. We give into addictions because we like to be reminded of the primal powers within us. Some of us have forgotten that we can make wild animal love without alcohol or drift into a mind altering trance without drugs. Some of us have forgotten how to genuinely give and receive love unconditionally. In placing the ideas of evil outside of ourselves onto Nature we have separated ourselves from Nature and have become weakened and ignorant of what our true natures are and how we fit into all of creation. Thus how the old nature gods of paganism became the devil for the religions of new.

And today I come across this lovely song by chance, reminding me of what I have learned:

Lyrics:

Early one morning, around the first of May,
A man in black came walking, into a woodland glade,
Following the sounds of pipes on this beautiful Spring day,
High on the music that they made.
But what beheld him within that place?
A look of recognition fell across his face,
“Lucifer, oh Lucifer, why do you appear to me?
For I am a man of God, a priest.

(Chorus)
I’m no devil I’m Father to the land,
I have lived here since the Earth began,
Neither black nor white,
Priest hear what I say,
I’m green and grey.

The priest said, “Lucifer, Lucifer you lie so well,
I will pray unto my God, go back to the fires of Hell!
You fell from Heaven, and you fell from Grace.
You want dominion over this place.”
The Piper smiled, and to the priest he said,
“I was Lord of Animals, the Wild Hunt I led,
Until your God came here and with his jealous hand,
It was he who wanted dominion over this land.

The priest said, “All evil comes from your hand.”
The Piper said, “If evil is, it lies in the hearts of Man.”
“But you lead us, oh you tempt us, to rape, to steal, to kill!”
The Piper said, “Whatever happened to free will?”
Then the Grove lay empty, the priest told no one.
The blossom lay upon the thorn, the Piper’s tune was done.
And in the sunlit forest, the animals they bowed,
As the Piper lay his Goddess down.

-Written by Damh the Bard

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“The route to the Forest is one of those open secrets which whosoever would know must learn for himself; it is impossible to direct those who do not discover for themselves how to make the journey.” –In the Forest of Arden by Hamilton Wright Mabie, 1891

book peach

A Child of Nature by Hamilton Wright Mabie arrived this Beltane day. It is a first-edition 1901 book about the ecstasy of nature and spirituality. I am so excited- I am going to sit under my pink blossomed peach tree and read it among the buzzing of the bees feeding on the rich pollen and nectar around me. I visited the tree this morning while my children picked dandelions for their May Day baskets and the air was pulsating and vibrating with the busy bees chanting their melodies.

I am somewhat relieved that my group is not meeting tonight (due to schedule conflict we are not celebrating Beltane until mid May!). Instead, tonight is going to be a night of solitary serious magic, serious exploration and serious expression to my Gods. Now to decide if I am going to do all of this before or after I make wild animal love to my husband…

Happy Fire Jumping my friends!

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Where have all the mystics gone and why can’t they be seen?

Where are all the shadow men and singers to the trees?

Why are all these people gathering around a common sound,

When there is so much diversity in the world waiting to be found?

When can I escape to a wooded hidden home

Where folk who speak of magic safely may roam?

Why are those who are gifted  shunned from out of sight,

When we the people need their blessings and  insight?

When can we return to the doctors and the queens

Who can speak from our world into the great unseen?

I call out to the wild of places still unmet

Keep all of your secrets hidden there- because if we knew, we would forget.

Until one day when we all can meet as the lovers that we are,

and make new ways and reinvent how to love from afar,

May we hold our mysteries silent and deep and never surrender to

What others think we should be and what we are supposed to do.

For the path of the mystic can be like a mirror into the moon,

What is reflected is the truth of beauty, but logic taints it too soon.

-By Bonnie Waller (Cicada)

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black madonna

January’s Full Moon brought a night of magic and friendship at my seasonal women’s circle. The woman who hosted it rented a room at a historical lodge in our area and she set up “stations” for us to freely travel through while we did our introspective work.  Stations are a great way to keep the energy flowing in ritual by having a liberated sense of how one can go about it. For example, stations include a drumming corner, divination area, fire scrying, altar gazing, meditation mat, journal exploring, art creating, sacred dancing, and more. No matter what size of a group you are working with, people can benefit from the freedom of listening to their inner spirit regarding what to do first.

Before we began she read us a passage about the Black Madonna from a book by the author of Women Who Run With the Wolves and I just have to get my hands on it:

Untie the Strong Woman

Once we separated into our stations I approached the altar filled with Goddess representations that we all brought. A black figurine called to me and I knew it was the Black Madonna. It is a wonderful moment when you connect with something new. Why did she call to me? When new deities approach you take it as a sign that a new message is coming for your life. I welcome change. The Black Madonna called me to the Earth, to be a servant of Love, to give myself to a greater cause. My other blog, Love is My Spirit, reflects this expansion in my Spirit.

Afterwards, I did more research on her and found a powerful and inspiring article about her here.

Then, I painted my own Black Madonna to honor in my home (pictured above). Thrift stores usually are in abundance of the Virgin Mary statues, so it was easy to come across one that could be painted to my liking.

And finally, here is a Virgin Mary picture I painted earlier this month for my step mom:

mary painting 1

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The journey of the Heart takes us deep within our souls

and leads us to find that we are reflections of each other.

  One year ago from today a friend and I began the blog, Witching Wildwood and it fulfilled my outlet for all things spiritually witchy and kept track of our ritual adventures. Then something interesting happened along the way. The only words I can use to describe it is my heart expanded. I began to feel open to all paths of spirit. I began to see love as infinite.

I still adore the pagan path that I have been on since I was 11. I still honor the Goddess when the moonlight shines pale blue on a field of snow and when a deep cave reveals a secret crevice to me to rest and soak in her silence. I still sing of mystery and magic and feel the pull to greet the summer’s sun with bare feet dancing in dew-drip valleys. I still am a witch, and so Witching Wildwood will continue as always…

And now my spiritual path has led me to focus on something that is so expansive but simple that I felt the need to create an additional blog dedicated to it:

LOVE!

Feel free to join me in my new additional blog: Love is My Spirit

I want to explore love as Infinite Spirit. I want to celebrate people who have radiated this force so strongly that their actions helped shift the world, even if their action was so simple that it influenced just one person to open their own heart. I want to create and experiment with Love by awakening it in my own home, city and world community.

When we truly love, we are in harmony not only with our beloved but with all living things. Love is blind, insofar as it makes no distinctions but extends to everyone and everything.

-Living Yoga, edited by Gearg Feuerstein and Stephen Bodian

I have began dreaming about all different religions. I feel like peeling off a COEXIST bumpersticker and adhering it to my soul. How can I live more alive and serve love? How can I channel this energy that is an extension of the connection between us all? These are the questions I am asking.

In this blog I also post up my public art pieces that inspire positivity. I’m planning on having an adventurous year doing these anonymously in my community and am wanting to feature other people who do the same! Welcome!

Many Blessings for your 2013 and Happy One Year Birthday to Witching Wildwood!

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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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When I was a wee one, the moon sat outside my window and listened to my prayers. Her milky light poured into my bedroom and I was comforted.

A stream ran past my shady yard and I used to find sticks to swirl in the mud under the water. The sediments would swirl to the top and I imagined this was the magic of a spell set forth. When my first wish came to pass, I became a life-long believer in magic.

My dreams would wake me in the night from vivid journeys. Characters would reappear relentlessly so much that I could write whole books on them. Sometimes I would find that a dream happened again when I was awake.

When my mother warned me of the dangers of witches on Halloween night I became intensely curious instead of afraid.

Trees were my friends. When my neighbor died,  his grown children came and chopped down his apple tree.  I, in return, confronted them in a full, blown-out rage and then ran away crying.

I never doubted what I saw or how I felt, even if it was against what others wanted me to believe. If no one wanted to take the time to understand me I felt like it was their loss, not mine.

Sunday school was  fun for me. I had an intense faith in God. Only when I became a teenager did I learn that how I perceived God clashed with what most in the church wanted me to feel.

So when I became eleven and my parents found out I had started to become interested in the occult they thought it was the worst possible decision on my part. But here is the thing, was it really a decision? If I had not delved into deeper mysteries, I would have simply been going against what came natural for me.

I went through many trials with adults on the subject of witchcraft. So many were afraid for my soul. I was forbidden to hang out with friends by their mothers. I was forced unwillingly to go to church events. As I grew older, I was threatened to be kicked out of the house on several occasions. I understand now that they were only doing what they thought was best for me or their kids.

But it all came down to this: If magic =evil. Then little me= evil. They didn’t get it (and still probably don’t) that being a witch is so truly ingrained into my blood that I could not have possibly made a different choice. I fought it for a while, sure you can bet that- it took a while to get out of my head the idea of hell and what the devil may be doing. I went through a phase of burning all my witchcraft books when I was fourteen out of guilt, only to be lulled back into the mystery of the cicada’s songs in the night a few weeks later.

Finally I realized I was happiest on the sacred, wooded path that I felt alone traveling. I was more balanced, too. No one could ever again convince me that the Goddess was really the devil in drag. She was my Great Mother who protected me when I snuck out my trailer window in the night to see the stars over the cornfields. She was the voice of the toads croaking by the pond where I first made love. I allowed magic in and I felt like my skin glowed like glittering dew and my life was eternally blessed.

I praise everyone who has continued to live their lives in harmony with their own natural rhythm of how they feel love. Love cannot be defined- it is beyond logic. Love shows itself infinitely in our world, even if it goes against the grain of what most think it should be. It is no one’s business to decide what form it takes, because true love is nonharming. Even if it is a man loving another man, a group of people sharing a household, or a witch partaking in relationship with the gods, we should accept and celebrate love in all of love’s forms! So blessed be.

~Cicada

images from:

Deer, hare and mother by Jessica Galbreth

“The Siren” by John William Waterhouse

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