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Samhain ritual as performed in the Wiccan Church


Samhain (pronounced saw-an), commonly referred to as Halloween, is a religious holiday celebrated by Wiccan and witch. The festival traditionally is a feast for the gathering of the family in love and remembrance. All the family including one’s ancestors.

Wiccans do not regard physical death as an end but merely one more event in a continuing progress of the soul’s in its path toward fulfillment of divine destiny. Because of these beliefs, it is only natural at this time of year to invite our beloved ancestors to remember and to celebrate with us.

If you do not find these beliefs in conflict with your own personal beliefs, please join us in the following ritual of thanksgiving and remembrance.

    Whether you join with us or not,

      May you walk in the Light of the Lady

        and know the Wisdom of the Lord.

Blessed Be.

The clergy and members of the United Wiccan Church.

After you have shared the bounty of your harvest with the children of your neighborhood (candy, etc) and the house has settled down for the night, disconnect or turn off your telephone so that this state of serenity will continue uninterrupted.

Prepare a special feast of whatever foods reminds you of a special departed friend or family member, or of past family gatherings. While you are preparing this feast think of all of the good times you had with them.

When the feast is prepared, set your holiday table with a special place of honor for the departed friend or family member.

Decorate the table and room as you would for a holiday dinner with the family, add those special things that are important to you and your family (flowers, candles,etc.) If you have a picture of the loved one, it is nice to place it at their place at the table.

Speak to that special person and invite them to join you in this celebration and time of remembrance. It is completely appropriate to say grace or offer any prayer that you feel is fitting.

The following is done in complete silence:

Serve the meal remembering to serve your honored guest (or guests) first. If wine or other alcoholic beverages are served, it is recommended that they be kept in moderation as you and your guests need to have a clear head.

Now sit down to the table with your loved ones and enjoy your feast. When you address them in your mind, always see them as well. (Try not to say in your mind, “if you can hear me…”, etc.). After the meal, the time of silence is over. Do whatever you normally do at a family holiday gathering (clear the table, play games, sing songs, etc.). Enjoy the companionship.

When the evening is over, or in the morning if you wish to make it an all night party, thank your invited guests for being with you and for making your celebration a special one.

There are a few words of caution that we will offer.

  1. If this ritual does not feel right for you, do not do it. Follow your instincts.
  2. Remember that crossing over does not necessarily change a person, so if you could not get through a meal in peace with them while they were alive, you will probably have the same problem with their spirit.
  3. Do not ask your guest to grant you wishes or do you favors. It is rude to invite a guest and then make it obvious that a favor is the reason they were asked, not because of love and respect. Spirits do not like rudeness! Besides, spirits often forget that you are limited in ways that they are not. If you ask them for $1,000, it may come as an insurance settlement after a painful break in your water pipe with all the delight in cleaning up the mess from ensuing water damage.

http://www.sacred-texts.com/bos/bos037.htm

Spooky Ancient Irish Myths on Halloween — Metal Gaia


Samhain is the ancient Irish festival that became Halloween as we know it. “The Celts believed the year was divided into two parts, the lighter half in the summer and the darker half in the winter. Samhain, or Halloween as it is now called, was the division between these halves. The Celts believed that the veil […]

via Spooky Ancient Irish Myths on Halloween — Metal Gaia

All Hallow’s Eve


by Mike Nichols

Halloween. Sly does it. Tiptoe catspaw. Slide and creep. But why? What for? How? Who? When! Where did it all begin? ‘You don’t know, do you?’ asks Carapace Clavicle Moundshroud climbing out under the pile of leaves under the Halloween Tree. ‘You don’t REALLY know!’
–Ray Bradbury, from ‘The Halloween Tree’

Samhain. All Hallows. All Hallow’s Eve. Hallow E’en. Halloween. The most magical night of the year. Exactly opposite Beltane on the wheel of the year, Halloween is Beltane’s dark twin. A night of glowing jack-o-lanterns, bobbing for apples, tricks or treats, and dressing in costume. A night of ghost stories and seances, tarot card readings and scrying with mirrors. A night of power, when the veil that separates our world from the Otherworld is at its thinnest. A ‘spirit night’, as they say in Wales.

All Hallow’s Eve is the eve of AllHallow’s Day (November 1st). And for once, even popular tradition remembers that the Eve is more important than the Day itself, the traditional celebration focusing on October 31st, beginning at sundown. And this seems only fitting for the great Celtic New Year’s festival. Not that the holiday was Celtic only. In fact, it is startling how many ancient and unconnected cultures (the Egyptians and pre-Spanish Mexicans, for example) celebrated this as a festival of the dead. But the majority of our modern traditions can be traced to the British Isles.

The Celts called it Samhain, which means ‘summer’s end’, according to their ancient two-fold division of the year, when summer ran from Beltane to Samhain and winter ran from Samhain to Beltane. (Some modern Covens echo this structure by letting the High Priest ‘rule’ the Coven beginning on Samhain, with rulership returned to the High Priestess at Beltane.) According to the later four-fold division of the year, Samhain is seen as ‘autumn’s end’ and the beginning of winter. Samhain is pro- nounced (depending on where you’re from) as ‘sow-in’ (in Ireland), or ‘sow-een’ (in Wales), or ‘sav-en’ (in Scotland), or (inevitably) ‘sam-hane’ (in the U.S., where we don’t speak Gaelic).

Not only is Samhain the end of autumn; it is also, more importantly, the end of the old year and the beginning of the new. Celtic New Year’s Eve, when the new year begins with the onset of the dark phase of the year, just as the new day begins at sundown. There are many representations of Celtic gods with two faces, and it surely must have been one of them who held sway over Samhain. Like his Greek counterpart Janus, he would straddle the threshold, one face turned toward the past in commemoration of those who died during the last year, and one face gazing hopefully toward the future, mystic eyes attempting to pierce the veil and divine what the coming year holds. These two themes, celebrating the dead and divining the future, are inexorably intertwined in Samhain, as they are likely to be in any New Year’s celebration.

As a feast of the dead, it was believed the dead could, if they wished, return to the land of the living for this one night, to celebrate with their family, tribe, or clan. And so the great burial mounds of Ireland (sidhe mounds) were opened up, with lighted torches lining the walls, so the dead could find their way. Extra places were set at the table and food set out for any who had died that year. And there are many stories that tell of Irish heroes making raids on the Underworld while the gates of faery stood open, though all must return to their appointed places by cock-crow.

As a feast of divination, this was the night par excellence for peering into the future. The reason for this has to do with the Celtic view of time. In a culture that uses a linear concept of time, like our modern one, New Year’s Eve is simply a milestone on a very long road that stretches in a straight line from birth to death. Thus, the New Year’s festival is a part of time. The ancient Celtic view of time, however, is cyclical. And in this framework, New Year’s Eve represents a point outside of time, when the natural order of the universe dissolves back into primordial chaos, preparatory to re-establishing itself in a new order. Thus, Samhain is a night that exists outside of time and hence it may be used to view any other point in time. At no other holiday is a tarot card reading, crystal reading or tea-leaf reading so likely to succeed.

The Christian religion, with its emphasis on the ‘historical’ Christ and his act of redemption 2000 years ago, is forced into a linear view of time, where ‘seeing the future’ is an illogical proposition. In fact, from the Christian perspective, any attempt to do so is seen as inherently evil. This did not keep the medieval Church from co-opting Samhain’s other motif, commemoration of the dead. To the Church, however, it could never be a feast for all the dead, but only the blessed dead, all those hallowed (made holy) by obedience to God — thus, All Hallow’s, or Hallowmas, later All Saints and All Souls.

There are so many types of divination that are traditional to Hallowstide, it is possible to mention only a few. Girls were told to place hazel nuts along the front of the firegrate, each one to symbolize one of her suitors. She could then divine her future husband by chanting, ‘If you love me, pop and fly; if you hate me, burn and die.’ Several methods used the apple, that most popular of Halloween fruits. You should slice an apple through the equator (to reveal the five-pointed star within) and then eat it by candlelight before a mirror. Your future spouse will then appear over your shoulder. Or, peel an apple, making sure the peeling comes off in one long strand, reciting, ‘I pare this apple round and round again; / My sweetheart’s name to flourish on the plain: / I fling the unbroken paring o’er my head, / My sweetheart’s letter on the ground to read.’ Or, you might set a snail to crawl through the ashes of your hearth. The considerate little creature will then spell out the initial letter as it moves.

Perhaps the most famous icon of the holiday is the jack-o-lantern. Various authorities attribute it to either Scottish or Irish origin. However, it seems clear that it was used as a lantern by people who traveled the road this night, the scary face to frighten away spirits or faeries who might otherwise lead one astray. Set on porches and in windows, they cast the same spell of protection over the household. (The American pumpkin seems to have forever superseded the European gourd as the jack-o-lantern of choice.) Bobbing for apples may well represent the remnants of a Pagan ‘baptism’ rite called a ‘seining’, according to some writers. The water-filled tub is a latter-day Cauldron of Regeneration, into which the novice’s head is immersed. The fact that the participant in this folk game was usually blindfolded with hands tied behind the back also puts one in mind of a traditional Craft initiation ceremony.

The custom of dressing in costume and ‘trick-or-treating’ is of Celtic origin with survivals particularly strong in Scotland. However, there are some important differences from the modern version. In the first place, the custom was not relegated to children, but was actively indulged in by adults as well. Also, the ‘treat’ which was required was often one of spirits (the liquid variety). This has recently been revived by college students who go ‘trick-or-drinking’. And in ancient times, the roving bands would sing seasonal carols from house to house, making the tradition very similar to Yuletide wassailing. In fact, the custom known as ‘caroling’, now connected exclusively with mid-winter, was once practiced at all the major holidays. Finally, in Scotland at least, the tradition of dressing in costume consisted almost exclusively of cross-dressing (i.e., men dressing as women, and women as men). It seems as though ancient societies provided an opportunity for people to ‘try on’ the role of the opposite gender for one night of the year. (Although in Scotland, this is admittedly less dramatic — but more confusing — since men were in the habit of wearing skirt-like kilts anyway. Oh well…)

To Witches, Halloween is one of the four High Holidays, or Greater Sabbats, or cross-quarter days. Because it is the most important holiday of the year, it is sometimes called ‘THE Great Sabbat.’ It is an ironic fact that the newer, self-created Covens tend to use the older name of the holiday, Samhain, which they have discovered through modern research. While the older hereditary and traditional Covens often use the newer name, Halloween, which has been handed down through oral tradition within their Coven. (This is often holds true for the names of the other holidays, as well. One may often get an indication of a Coven’s antiquity by noting what names it uses for the holidays.)

With such an important holiday, Witches often hold two distinct celebrations. First, a large Halloween party for non-Craft friends, often held on the previous weekend. And second, a Coven ritual held on Halloween night itself, late enough so as not to be interrupted by trick-or-treaters. If the rituals are performed properly, there is often the feeling of invisible friends taking part in the rites. Another date which may be utilized in planning celebrations is the actual cross-quarter day, or Old Halloween, or Halloween O.S. (Old Style). This occurs when the sun has reached 15 degrees Scorpio, an astrological ‘power point’ symbolized by the Eagle. This year (1988), the date is November 6th at 10:55 pm CST, with the celebration beginning at sunset. Interestingly, this date (Old Halloween) was also appropriated by the Church as the holiday of Martinmas.

Of all the Witchcraft holidays, Halloween is the only one that still boasts anything near to popular celebration. Even though it is typically relegated to children (and the young-at-heart) and observed as an evening affair only, many of its traditions are firmly rooted in Paganism. Interestingly, some schools have recently attempted to abolish Halloween parties on the grounds that it violates the separation of state and religion. Speaking as a Pagan, I would be saddened by the success of this move, but as a supporter of the concept of religion-free public education, I fear I must concede the point. Nonetheless, it seems only right that there SHOULD be one night of the year when our minds are turned toward thoughts of the supernatural. A night when both Pagans and non-Pagans may ponder the mysteries of the Otherworld and its inhabitants. And if you are one of them, may all your jack-o’lanterns burn bright on this All Hallow’s Eve.

Question: Does the Media Depict Witchcraft as Evil?


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Last week a student emailed me some questions for a school project she was putting together. One of the questions was: “Do you feel as if the media represents witchcraft as evil, and would you say this effects how people view you?”

My initial response was that the question wasn’t one that could be answered quickly. In fact, it could probably be a dissertation rather than something answered briefly for a school project, but I mulled it over and decided to blog about it.

The first point really is whether the schoolgirl was talking about historic witchcraft or modern pagan witchcraft, as they are two different things. Historically the word “witch” was generally used for someone who did malefic magic – curses and so on – but nowadays people use the term to mean followers of nature religions such as Wicca. Wiccans are very nice witches. We are followers of a nature religion that celebrates the seasons. We aren’t evil and we believe that it is wrong to use magic for harm. I emailed the student asking which witch did she mean?

However, the problem with the question might well have been that the school pupil didn’t realise there was a difference. And, of course, that can be the problem with the way witchcraft is reported in the media. Journalists – and the general public – don’t necessarily know the difference either.

Wicca and similar forms of modern pagan witchcraft have only been in the eyes of the media since the mid 20th century – and certainly back in the early days newspapers produced a few horribly inaccurate reports that depicted Wiccans as evil, although even then most journalists tried to report the truth. The main culprit was the now-defunct News of the World. This is what Professor Ronald Hutton said about that in his book The Triumph of the Moon: A History of Modern Pagan Witchcraft:

The only outstanding exception was a Sunday paper especially notorious for scandal mongering, the News of the World, which on 1 September 1963 launched a short series on ‘black magic’, which it equated with pagan witchcraft and declared to be a ‘terrible new menace to youth’ in the style of the denunciations of the 1950s. …Strong in rhetoric but weak in actual material, the articles instituted a tradition, maintained with a few lapses until the present [1999], of hostility to pagan witches on the part of this particular newspaper. This attitude, it must be stressed again, was relatively rare among journalists of the time. … [The] newspaper had treated witchcraft only in passing after its big attempt to scaremonger in 1963 – until 1967, when it printed [a few more balanced articles]. Then, two years later, the paper changed its policy [and did] denounce them [Wiccans] anew, as having links with Satanism… The intent was relentlessly destructive. The names and addresses of the witches chosen as targets were printed along with their photographs, and the purpose (next to that of increasing sales of the newspaper) was clearly to ruin their public reputations and so their lives.

As Professor Ronald Hutton pointed out, even in the 1960s The News of the World was not typical of the media in its portrayal of modern pagan witchcraft.

Nowadays, journalists in the UK – and the public in general – have a much better understanding of what Wicca is about and don’t depict it as evil. I would say most newspaper reports are reasonably factually accurate and report Wicca as a gentle nature religion. There are still a few exceptions – mainly the Daily Mail – but even Daily Mail journalists tend to poke fun at modern witches as being eccentric hippy types rather than saying they are wicked.

However, although news reports these days don’t tend to portray modern pagan witches as being evil, in movies and TV dramas the situation is annoyingly different. I guess when you are making a horror film, the stereotypical villain of the wicked witch is still popular. Of course this is fiction, but it does annoy me because it gives an unfair image of modern paganism.

Murder mystery dramas are another category of TV show that regularly represents witches and modern pagans in unpleasant and inaccurate ways. A couple of weeks ago I watched an episode of BBC TV series Father Brown called The Standing Stones. It was filmed at the beautiful Roll right Stones and although I enjoyed the setting of the lovely stone circle, I didn’t think that much of the plot. Here is the description (*spoiler alert*):

Father Brown and [his housekeeper] Mrs McGuire visit the cottage hospital in the village of Standing where many of the children have been struck down by an outbreak of Polio. The desperate villagers, seeking a cure, sacrifice an innocent girl in a pagan blood ceremony at ancient stones.

My comment would be that no Wiccans or similar modern pagan witches would kill anyone. We do not do blood sacrifices.

Another murder mystery series that has been less than flattering about pagans and witches in the past is ITV’s Midsomer Murders and I understand that the episode on Wednesday 4 February at 8pm, called Murder by Magic is also about pagans. Here is an excerpt from the press release about it (*spoiler alert*):

Landlady Hannah Altman is crushed to death by a giant Perspex box during a magic show by famous illusionist Gideon Latimer aimed at raising funds for St Cyprian’s Church. Kate finds that cables to the box were deliberately sabotaged – it’s murder…
Evangelising curate Andrew Maplin tells vicar Magnus Soane that the tragedy is God’s vengeance for the pagan traditions still held deep in Midsomer Oaks. Barnaby and Nelson fear Gideon was the real target, especially when Annabel reveals hate mail has been sent to Melmoth Hall, his newly-acquired country seat. That night a group of masked pagans hold a fire-lit ceremony….
Andrew tries to perform an exorcism at Melmoth. The family together with Gideon’s devoted mother Carole are angry. The next day Annabel finds Andrew stabbed to death by the pagan temple in Melmoth’s grounds. His face is covered with oak leaves – the pagan Green Man symbol. Nearby is the grave of Sir Hugo Melmoth, who according to legend threw himself on a fire in an act of self-sacrifice.
Andrew’s camcorder reveals footage of a pagan ceremony which ends abruptly when one of the pagans spots him and runs towards his camera… Sarah discovers Sir Hugo was no hero – he was killed by villagers seeking justice for years of tyranny… Barnaby and Nelson race to the pagan temple where Lorna is re-enacting the death of Sir Hugo. Gideon is put into a crate over a burning pyre. As firefighters douse the flames, another person is found in the crate…

I hope the schoolgirl who emailed me her questions finds my answer useful for her school project. But what do you think about the way Wicca and modern pagan witchcraft are portrayed in the news and in movies?

I’d be really interested to read comments, so do have your say.

The photo at the top shows a scene from Midsomer Murders: Murder by Magic

Links to some previous posts about witchcraft in the news
http://www.badwitch.co.uk/2014/05/news-satanism-101-in-washington-post.html
http://www.badwitch.co.uk/2014/10/news-halloween-wicca-and-witchcraft.html
http://www.badwitch.co.uk/2014/08/news-witches-witches-witches.html
http://www.badwitch.co.uk/2014/06/news-druids-witches-pagans-and-summer.html
http://www.badwitch.co.uk/2015/01/the-history-of-gerald-gardner-at-witchs.html

To read more posts like this visit A Bad Witch’s Blog at http://www.badwitch.co.uk

Source: http://www.badwitch.co.uk/2015/02/question-does-media-depict-witchcraft.html

Original article found at HERE

Mabon Poem ~Luna


https://thenewpagan.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/mabon3.jpg?w=590

Now is the time to reap your reward,
As we celebrate the last dance of the Lord,
Light and dark balanced on an ear of wheat,
As the last grain signals the harvest complete.
Autumn’s tide has reached its height,
Now is time we welcome the night,
Reflect on your strength as the light is waning,
And the hours of darkness are now gaining.
Give praise to the Earth Mother,
As She dons her wintry cloak,
As her tears fall , the earth will soak.

Blessed Mabon!

(http://www.lunasgrimoire.com/mabon-poem/)

Muslims and Vikings — Metal Gaia


When people typically think about interactions the vikings had with non-vikings, they think of what Christian monks wrote about the “godless” heathens and their spiky “horned hats” (vikings didn’t wear horned hats). In this year dire forewarnings came over the land of the Northumbrians, and miserably terrified the people: these were extraordinary whirlwinds and lightnings, and fiery dragons […]

via Muslims and Vikings — Metal Gaia

Druidry for Beginners – The Ritual of the Wild


800px-Dark_mossy_forestSo hopefully you have been practicing the senses meditations offered in the first post, and you also now have a space in your home dedicated to your practice.

What next?

It seems to me that a rite of dedication is still an important thing. When I first came to Paganism the route into the Mysteries was through initiation and although there are probably now more solitary practitioners than people initiated into the mystery traditions some kind of dedication is still of great value. Sometimes these rites are planned, at other times it can be completely spontaneous. You may have already had one. Some can also come in the form of dreams.

An initiation into a mystery school is often done after a good year or more of exploration to make sure that the path is right for you, and you are right for the group. A rite of dedication can also be seen as a rite of opening, and can therefore be explored much earlier, if the time feels right.

Only you will know when that time comes. Don’t rush, but this post is a small pebble that I’d like to drop into the pond to allow the ripples to spread out into your awareness. To hold for the future.

Here is a story of one such spontaneous initiation:

The Ritual of the Wild

We stood together in a circle in the woodland. Seven men, and one woman. We stood, the wet leaves under our feet, the woods full of the fragrance of Autumn. The air, damp with mist. It was dusk in late Autumn, and the time was Samhain, the 31st October, or Hallowe’en. We had joined together within that circle to explore the figure of Merlin. Not the Merlin of the Malory Arthurian stories, but Merlin, the Wild Man of the Woods, who ran wild for thirty years within the forest of Caledonia after the Battle of Arderydd, where the last Pagan king of Britain, Gwendolleu, and all of Merlin’s friends and relations were slaughtered, and Merlin himself even slayed his own nephew. And as the battle ended, the air thick with the copper taint of spilled blood, a stillness fell upon the battlefield and the land, Merlin looked through the mist around him and saw hundreds of dead bodies, and he realised he was the last person standing – he was completely alone in the world. With that realisation came the fact that he could not return to society, a place that he could no longer recognise, as the new Christian faith spread across the land.

So he chose to retreat from the world of the human, and of the mundane, and he chose to live in the forest, alone, yet with the company of the animals. He lived as a forager and trapper, keeping himself alive by eating the flesh of animals, the fruit of the trees and bushes, the plants, and the fungus that forms on dead branches and the forest floor.

The Caledonian forest was vast at that time, and those who came upon him would ask him to prophesise for them. He would tell them their future, and very often what he foretold would come to pass. As he spent his time within the woods, he befriended certain animals one of which was a little piglet, and he also rode the backs of wolves and deer. He became the Wild Man of the Woods – that archetypal figure that lies within the hearts of us all. That part of our human soul that, when it sees the woodlands, cannot help but be called by the dark shadows within – we wonder what it would be like to return to that place and time when we relied heavily on the Earth and the seasons for our lives.

So we stood there under the trees, and we each spoke our truths. Some spoke of their own madness, times in their lives where they felt like their soul had been stripped to the very bone, that they in fact disappeared, that they didn’t know themselves. That they had fallen so deep that they no longer existed, and they reached the bottom of that pit, ready to rebuild themselves, slowly, gradually, until they became the person they were today. This is one form of madness.

Others spoke of the madness of inspiration – of the fact that inspiration comes from the word ‘inspire’ or to ‘breathe in’, and with this inspiration came the muse of the poet and artist. And how many poets and artists, when you explore their lives, seem to have sadness and melancholy within them, and indeed to verge on the edge of madness.

Then one of us, a bearded man, began to take off his clothes, and when naked, he lay down upon the earth, and he asked us to throw leaves onto his skin, and to bury him within the debris of the forest floor. In the cold air, he lay there, touching the earth, tears in his eyes as he spoke of how he had once had a full cup. A full cup at least in the recognition of what at that time was society’s norm. He had a wife, two children, a good job, everything he could want for, he had money coming in, a good home, yet there was something missing, something that couldn’t be fulfilled. Then he told of how he was asked by Spirit if he was ready to give that all up to find that part of himself that was missing, and he, without any hesitation said “yes”. And so he lost everything, and he did indeed return to the woods for some time, and he did return as the Wild Man, just as Merlin had done after the Battle of Arderydd, and there within the woods he found and touched something so real, and so beautiful, that his life could never be the same again – the thing that comes when you let go of the mirage of modern human constructs, and society, and place yourself back within nature itself, as a simple animal once more.

Then we wanted to reflect within each of us what it was that touched that Wild Man within, that Wild Man of the woods. So we knelt upon the earth in a circle, our hands and foreheads touching the earth. We could smell the scent of the wet fallen leaves on the forest floor, and the mustiness of the mushrooms and fungus that scattered around us. And there we recited a Merlin poem. The words Merlin cried as he held, in despair, a little piglet, knowing that his life would never be the same again. And so, we too, put our heads to the earth and spoke that poem, knowing that our lives would never be the same again.

Listen little pig,

Oh little trembling one,

Under this thin blanket, I can find no repose,

And since the battle of Arderydd,

I no longer care,

If the sky falls,

Or the sea overflows.

Then one of us began to chant in a long continious note, the words, I am……

I-aaaaaaaaaaaammmmmmmmmmmmmm

And as the image of what lay within our hearts came into our heads we shouted, cried out, whispered in long tones…..

I-aaaaaaaaaaaammmmmmmmmmmmmm

the Spirit of the forest!

I-aaaaaaaaaaaammmmmmmmmmmmmm

the beating heart of the earth!

I-aaaaaaaaaaaammmmmmmmmmmmmm

the stag of seven tines!

I-aaaaaaaaaaaammmmmmmmmmmmmm

the blood within your veins!

I-aaaaaaaaaaaammmmmmmmmmmmmm

the love that never dies!

I-aaaaaaaaaaaammmmmmmmmmmmmm

And each one of us in that moment touched the madness that was Merlin again, and each one of us in that moment connected to the Wild Man/Woman within, and for my part, I let go of all that had gone before, and offered myself to the journey that lay ahead.


For some practical personal work spend some time thinking about your personal relationship with the Natural World and ask yourself the following questions. Make notes of the answers in a notebook, so you can look back on them later, and see how far you have come.

How close to you feel to the Natural World?

Are you a part of nature, or separate from it?

Can you feel your Wildman/woman inside?

If you can where in your body do they exist?

How can you express this wildness?

Original post

(( http://www.paganmusic.co.uk/druidry-for-beginners-the-ritual-of-the-wild/ ))

Evocations 1 – Classical Methods Explained


“Not all evocations are how the media and movies portray them. They are not to be feared as long as they are performed correctly and the warnings are heeded. In fact, the rituals themselves, and the appearance of the spirit conjured can be very beautiful. Also, I would not advise a novice practitioner to perform this complex of a ritual on their own. Learn all that you can about it first, and seek further guidance.”  ~ lovegodbob

Written by: Rob ( Rob’s Magick Blog )

When we look at classical ceremonial magic, the basic evocation ritual involves a circle and a triangle. Likewise the ritual is split into four parts: preparing the area, evoking the being, conversing with the being, and dismissing the being. None of these methods are native to ceremonial magic. There have always been evocations, even long before ceremonial magic came into vogue, and all evocations attempt to manipulate the same basic principles to bring about results. If we knew the exact evocation rituals of early man we would no doubt find similarities to modern ceremonial rituals, not because there has been a clear line of influence, but because both rituals attempt the same thing, and there is only so much room for variation. Even the rituals in this book, which are advertised as an alternative to the predominate ceremonial methods, have clear similarities. Once again this isn’t because of a direct influence, but because there is only so much room for variation.

Constructing the Magic Circle

The most important part of the classical method is the magic circle. There is no one way to make a magic circle, or even a best way. In fact the best way for you to make a magic circle would be based on your own spiritual beliefs and knowledge. In its most basic form a magic circle is just a circle. It can be drawn onto the ground with chalk, etched into dirt, drawn into the air with a wand, knife, or finger, or it can be drawn on a piece of cloth that is laid on the floor. The circle serves several purposes. It creates an area which exists outside of space-time, it connects the magician to the divine, it empowers the magician, and it protects the magician. Let’s go over each of these four purposes individually and how each is derived.

First off, in order to maximize our success with evocations, we need to be within an area outside of space and time. Not everything will be able to manifest into the available space. The area may be too small for it, or it may be a small creature and the area may be too big for you to see it. It may be of a vibration that cannot enter this world through normal means, or the environment of this world may be too foreign to it for it to manifest here. Likewise the entity’s normal movement through time may not be conductive to communication. It may be moving backwards through time, or stagnant in a single moment of time, or it may be moving too quickly or too slowly through time relative to the magician to make communication possible. It may also, for whatever reason, not be available at the exact moment of evocation.

A circle represents infinity. It has no beginning or end. It encompasses all space and time. When we are inside the magic circle, we enter into a space that is outside of space and time. Inside the circle, space and time may move exactly the same as directly outside the circle. In fact this is how it will most likely be moving when the magician first enters the circle. However once the evocation begins the circle will shift its place in time and space as needed to be conductive to communication. It should be noted that the area directly surrounding the circle may also be affected by these shifts in space and time. A person standing directly outside of the circle may not notice any change (such as the magician moving slowly or rapidly through time, for instance) because they are being affected by the same shifts. However inconsistencies in time can sometimes be sensed between the ritual area and an area that is far enough away.

Secondly we want a connection to the divine, or at least some sort of higher power. And in the next two steps we will talk about why we need that connection. A circle is generally seen as a symbol of the divine, or God, or the gods because it is infinite and all encompassing. Exactly which higher power you wish to draw upon is going to be dependent on your own personal beliefs. Christian mystics will usually draw upon the power of the Christian God or Christ, because they see him as being the highest power in the universe. Others will call upon something called the All or the Is, which is simply the sentient form of the accumulation of all things in the universe, seen to some as the supreme god or creator. Others will use a god or gods from various pantheons. And still others may call upon the power of the angels. Which one you decide to use isn’t that important. What is important is that what you’re using is real, that it is very powerful, and that you’ll be able to draw its power down and access it.

Thirdly the magic circle empowers the magician. In the classical method of evocation power is provided by an external source, and this source is accessed through the magic circle. Your connection to the divine is your source of power. It is important that the magician understand that their connection to the divine is their power source, and also that this power is absolute. They also have to have faith that the power they draw upon is absolute. If the magician does not have an understanding of and a faith in the power, they are projecting weakness instead of strength, and this in turn creates a weakness which can be exploited by the evoked spirit.

Lastly the circle provides protection for the magician. The circle is a source of absolute power, or at least a power far greater than what is being evoked, and this power cannot in any way be breached. The circle is not only there to protect the magician from a direct attack, but also to protect them from more subtle influences that the spirit may have upon the magician. Within the classical method of evocation this protection is essential, because from the beginning the magician attempts to control and exploit the evoked spirit through force which creates a hostile relationship between the two. The magician does this with borrowed power, which only goes to illustrate how weak the magician is without his protections.

The Triangle

The other part of the classical ritual is the triangle. Much like the magical circle, there is no correct way to make a triangle. It can be drawn in the air, on the floor, in the dirt, or on a cloth. Usually the triangle is much less elaborate than the circle. The triangle is often seen as much less important than the circle.

The triangle is the space in which we wish to evoke our entity. Where as we wish ourselves, standing into the circle, to be connected into the highest power and a part of all times and all places, we want the exact opposite for what we evoke. We want the spirit to appear in a specific time and place. Ideally we want it to have a spiritual presence which can be channeled into, an astral presence which can be felt, and a physical manifestation which can be seen and heard. We also want the entity to be contained, so that it can only affect the world in the ways we command it to, and we want it to be weaker than us so we can control it.

It should be noted that the importance of the triangle in the ritual varies between magicians and rituals. Some magicians prefer to always use a triangle, and only evoke spirits into the triangle, so that they always have the greatest amount of power and leverage throughout the entire evocation. Other magicians evoke spirits outside of the triangle, and only use the triangle when necessary to control the spirit, or when they feel they need the added protection. These magicians can use the triangle as a threat, forcing disobedient spirits into the triangle. Some magicians, meanwhile, omit the triangle all together, and instead only make use of the protections provided by the circle.

So why a triangle?

The representation of the triangle is multifaceted. First and foremost, three is the number of the universe. 1 (singularity), 2 (duality), and 3 (triplicity) are the three most powerful numbers in existence.

Three also represents the three realms into which we can evoke spirits. The first realm is the mental realm. Spirits in this realm can be channeled by experienced practitioners in order to communicate and share knowledge. The second realm is the astral or spiritual realm. Spirits in this realm have a presence that can be felt. They are able to move and manipulate energy and affect the astral realm. They can be seen by and communicate with practitioners who are sensitive enough to see and hear ghosts. Finally there is the physical realm. Spirits in this realm can physically affect the world. They can move objects. They can be seen and heard by anyone.

Three is also a number of incompleteness and separation from the divine or complete power. Remember there are five elements. These five elements are represented by the five points of the pentagram. Combined these five elements are considered to be absolute power, which is why the pentagram is such a common and powerful magical symbol. However the number four has the same power. Spirit is often time looked at as the combination of the other four elements, or that the other four elements all spring forth from spirit. Therefor a representation of all four elements also represents spirit. Because it does lack spirit though, four is sometimes seen as being absolute power in the realm of the physical world where as five is absolute power in all realms.

Three however is one less than four. It only represents three of the elements. Anything evoked into the triangle is only allowed to be made up of three elements at once. At any given moment, whatever is in the triangle is missing one of the four basic elements from its being. This means it is within a very weakened state, a state through which it cannot make a true divine connection. This is essential because it guarantees that the practitioner, in the circle, is more powerful than the spirit, that the practitioner has access to a power that the spirit is denied access to, and that the protections provided by the ritual cannot be breached.

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The Four Steps of the Ritual

Step 1 – Preparing the area

Adequate preparations need to be made prior to the evocation. Some practitioners prefer to perform a banishing ritual prior to the evocation so they can work within a clean space. Others prefer to use the existing energy of the area.

Most importantly the circle and triangle need to be constructed. Special care needs to be taken with the placement of the triangle. The triangle needs to be placed in an area that is free from any belongings. Likewise the area needs to be thoroughly cleaned and care needs to be taken that any skin follicles, nail clippings, hair, and blood, of both humans and pets, are not present. These things will provide a link to the practitioner and those close to him and can be used by a malicious spirit to exact revenge.

Likewise all reflective surfaces, including black mirrors like your computer monitor and TV, need to be covered, since they can give the spirit access to areas outside your control.

Energy also has to be raised in order to fuel the evocation. Spirits may need large amounts of energy to manifest, and having large amounts of energy available in the room will help with that. In addition to raising energy you may also attempt to burn candles and use incense to provide additional energy.

With this method, even if a spirit can manifest on its own, it’s considered poor form to be dependent on the powers of the spirit. The practitioner should provide ample energy for manifestation. In fact the practitioner should do everything they can to accommodate the spirit for the purposes of the evocation. A failure to do so shows weakness, and the practitioner needs to be careful to always come from a position of absolute power.

Any tools being used in the ritual also need to be put in their place. If a mirror is being used for communication it needs to go into the triangle. If sigils or rings are being used those need to go into their proper place. All magical tools at the ritual should be placed inside the circle unless there is a specific reason not to. Lastly the practitioner and anyone else attending the ritual needs to be inside the circle and needs to remain in the circle for the duration of the ritual.

Step 2 – The Evocation

Step 2 is the actual evocation. Here the practitioner needs to call forth the spirit by name and command him to come forward. If the spirit does not respond, the practitioner should become more and more threatening, until finally they use the power of the circle, if need be, to pull the spirit forward. During this stage the practitioner should also command the spirit to manifest within the realm of the practitioner’s choosing (either mentally, astrally, or physically). They should also make the spirit appear in a form that is pleasing to the practitioner. Everything in this stage needs to be a command, and everything needs to be done exactly to the practitioner’s wishes. The key here is to establish a position of power and control from the beginning.

Step 3 – Communion

During this stage the practitioner talks with and commands the spirit. If the practitioner has evoked the spirit just for knowledge, then the practitioner should engage the spirit in conversation for that knowledge. If the practitioner has a task for the spirit, they should give the spirit this task. The instructions given to the spirit need to be clear and concise with no room for independent thought or action, and the spirit must be given clear guidelines that this task is the only way they are allowed to affect the world outside the triangle. The practitioner should not bargain with the spirit, agree to repay the spirit in any way, and if necessary the practitioner should force the spirit to perform the task. The task should be performed immediately taking no longer than the duration of the ritual for the spirit to perform its part.

Step 4 – Banishing

The last step is for the practitioner to use the power of the circle to completely banish the spirit from the triangle. This is of utmost importance. The practitioner cannot leave the circle, nor should the triangle be broken, until after the spirit has been completely banished. To fail this step is to put the practitioner at the mercy of the spirit which he has abused and exploited with no power other than his own to protect him.

Pros and Cons

Advantages to using this method

1. With the classical method the practitioner is able to fully exploit the powers of the spirit. Instead of the spirit only doing what it wants to do or is willing to do it is forced to do what the practitioner wants it to do.

2. The practitioner is able to command the spirit and take from the spirit what he wants. The practitioner does not need to bargain with the spirit, to pay back the spirit, or depend on the charity of the spirit.

3. If done correctly and successfully, this method provides the practitioner the greatest amount of protection from not only direct harm, but also more subtle attacks such as being negatively influenced by the spirit.

Disadvantages to using this method

1. This entire method is a hostile act against the evoked spirit. Many normally non-aggressive spirits may become vengeful and violent and look for any opportunity to harm the practitioner. At the very least this method will create an adversitile relationship with most spirits where the spirit is not acting in the interests of the practitioner because it wants to, but is instead doing what it has to do.

2. The practitioner is dependent upon borrowed power for the evocation, control of the spirit, and his protection from the spirit. Although commanding from a position of power, the use of borrowed power shows the weakness of the practitioner. The spirit is controlled by, and possibly afraid of, the source of the power, not the practitioner.

3. All things considered, this method is probably the most dangerous. Although this method uses very powerful protections, it does so because it also creates such a dangerous position for a practitioner to be in. It creates a hostile situation while the practitioner’s reliance on external power advertises his weakness. If everything is done correctly the method is entirely safe. However the smallest error (be it in the preparation, the ritual, the banishing, or even the wording of commands) can prove disastrous.

4. Many people have ethical and moral issues with this method. Many people see commanding and exploiting another, even if it is a spirit, for no other reason than because you can as unjust. Many different religions and spiritual beliefs take issue with this method.

#Note: I may be a bit biased because I am not a fan of this method. I believe that the only reason why this method is so popular is because many people believe it is the only method. My goal in writing this book was to not only explain evocations, but also to provide alternate methods for evocations. I’ve explained this method in such detail because I wish to give a complete overview of evocations in this book, and also because understanding this method explains a good deal of the theory behind evocations and how they work in practical use, and this will also show what has been changed in the ‘alternative’ methods and why.

Additional sources:

The Occult Scrivener

Rob’s Magick Blog

Images of Irish Goddesses


Brilliantly done introduction to the Goddesses of Ireland. I wanted to share this with you all, and encourage you to visit Metal Gaia’s page for more awesome.

Metal Gaia

irishgoddesses

Although I’m sure not everyone imagines Irish Goddesses in the way that Simon E Davies does, I still wanted to take the time to point out his excellent art. Sometimes it pays to have a visual of the Gods and Goddesses, in order to make them more familiar.

LEARN MORE

Danu

Boann

Banbha

Brigid

Ernmas

Aine

The Morrigan

Badb

Macha

Bé_Chuille

Clíodhna

Fand

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Lesson 13 – Prosperity Spells


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Financial Solution Dream

Answers and solutions to your financial dilemmas may be out

of reach, the answers may lie in your subconscious. This

ritual is designed to draw them out during dreams.

Sprinkle infused basil oil onto a lodestone before going to

bed.

Get into bed, turn out the lights and gently rub the scented

lodestone in a clockwise direction on your forehead.

Keep the lodestone near the bed so that you can inhale the

basil fragrance.

Full Moon Money Chant

Write a list of people in green ink on a piece of paper, the

piece of paper should be relatively small, and should hold

about 5 names.

Light 2 green candles on a full moon at around 10pm, then

burn the piece of paper while chanting:

“Take these names and do them no harm, instead bring them

luck, money and charm.

So Mote It Be!”

Do the same ritual for all of the names, 5 names at a time.

Money Drawing Mojo

Green Bag

Green Candle

Money Drawing Oil

Money Drawing Incense

Lodestones

Peppermint

Magnetic Sand (also known as Lodestone food)

Sand

Coins

Light the green candle and money drawing incense.

Place the lodestones on a cloth.

Take a pinch of magnetic sand and drop them over the

lodestones to “charge” them.

While concentrating on your desires for money, stability and

prosperity,

place the lodestones into the green bag along with the

peppermint, sand and coins.

Envision yourself in the financial position you would like

to achieve.

Anoint your bag with the money drawing oil and pass the bag

through the flame of the candle

and the smoke from the burning incense while repeating the

following phrase five times:

Money flow – bring it directly to me. No more financial woes

– I am free.

Extinguish the candle and carry your newly charged mojo bag

with you.

Money Stone

Start this spell during the waxing moon.

You need a green candle, green paint, and you need to find a

rock that is nearly square in shape.

Charge the green candle with money attracting energy. See

yourself already enjoying the money that you need. When you

are ready, light the candle. In the glow of the candle

flame, paint symbols for money on the rock (£)…or any

other symbol that makes you think of money. As you do this,

concentrate on how this rock will bring needed money into

your life. After 7 minutes snuff the candle. Everyday, light

the candle for 7 minutes until money appears.

Words of Power for Wealth

Light a candle, burn some cinnamon incense (money drawing)

and say these words for 7 days during the Waxing Moon and on

the night of the Full Moon.

Keep it up until you have what is needed.

“There is One Power, Which is perfect abundance and

fulfillment.

And I (your name), am a perfect manifestation of this Power.

The Power, working for me and through me, provides for me

all the

abundance and fulfillment which is rightfully mine.

I draw to me and create in my life all that I need in the

World of Form to fulfill my needs.

This may come specifically in the form of money,

I hereby realize all cause, effect, manifestation,

form and essence and any channel within me,

Which may have been preventing the appropriate

flow of abundance in my life.

I draw upon the balance of resources in the Universe,

For the good of all, According to the free will of all,

And I affirm my own wisdom in understanding my needs, and

how to fulfill them.

I call to me just enough resources, Knowing I deprive none,

And am not deprived myself, I have just enough. And so must

it be.”

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