Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Dreams: I Want Off

This is one of those weird posts that I’m not sure where to put– here or at my “Other Blog”.  I’m going to opt for here, just because of the whole ‘dream-scape’ thing and dream interpretation.  I’m also going to state, before I even record the dream, that I am not racist. There’s not a racist bone in my extremely pagan liberal body, just ask my Japanese husband and my gorgeous Asian/American Native cousin (She’s about 4 years older than me, and still exquisitely exotically beautiful– has to be those cheekbones!).  I love most people and am a pretty free spirit, an old left-over from the 1969 hippie era– I was 12 in 1969 and incredibly impressionable and impressed, mostly with the clothes, the jewelry, and flowers in the hair, most of the other stuff went right over my head.

But I digress.

To set the stage:  You should know that I have never flown on a commercial airplane.  The only flying I did was one 15 minute tour across Fremont in a small 4-seater on John C. Fremont Days umpteen years ago– one of the kids was still a baby.  It was odd and not at all what I expected- no one told me that air is bumpy.  I’m not sure I believe any of the explanations on this that I have heard– I suspect it might be Mother Nature reminding us that only birds fly naturally.  I also had no idea that I am intolerant to motion.  After this flight, I spent the next 5 hours sick as a dog.  And that is the extent of my flying experience.  So there ya’ go.

The Dream:

I had to fly, it was a job requirement, and my husband Joe was coming with me.  This was my first time on a commercial plane and I was, as might be expected, a nervous wreck.  The flight attendant was being super sensitive and trying her gawd-awful best to keep me calm, and to answer my numerous, stupid, and repetitive questions.  There were many knowing glances exchanged between the Flight Attendant and Joe– they were actually getting quite a kick out of this, but at the same time, they both wanted me to relax and go with the flow, embrace the experience.

Ok then…we sit and we wait while other individuals are coming aboard– single individuals, couples, three at a time.  I like to watch people.  I’m actually a pretty avid people watcher; you pick up all kinds of things about people (intuitively) by watching them.  Well, maybe you don’t, but I do.  So, as I’m sitting there tapping my fingers in my lap and trying to be calm about it all, here comes a young man of mid-eastern persuasion who takes a seat across the aisle from me and about 2 rows back.  Ok, interesting, it’s an international world, there’s people from all over Kingdom Come and then some on this plane.  Cool.  A few seconds later, another man of mid-eastern persuasion comes aboard, he gives a passing glance to the first man, and then he takes a seat on our side, several rows ahead of me.  In the time that we sit there, waiting for all the passengers to board, two more men of mid-eastern persuasion come onto the plane.  They take seats behind me, several rows back, on both sides of the aisle, but out of my line of vision.

To tell you the truth, it’s at this point that I begin to get a little nervous; but I look around and everyone else seems calm and relaxed, absorbed in their own little worlds– their ipads, or phones, conversation, or whatever.  Ok then…it’s just me because I’m nervous anyway.  I glance at Joe beside me and he’s intent on something in his hands– maybe his phone, I don’t remember.

I glance over my shoulder at the young man 2 rows back on the other side of the aisle just in time to see him look at his phone, then look up at the man sitting several rows ahead of us, make eye contact, and give a very slight nod.  The man ahead of us looks down at his phone, then turns, looking over us, to someone behind us, and does the same thing– makes eye contact and gives a very slight nod.
It hits me like a thunderbolt, right in the gut– These Men Are Communicating With Each Other!!

I grab Joe’s arm and start whispering hysterically, trying to explain this to him.  I’m so hysterical in fact, that Joe grabs me by one arm and the Flight Attendant, who’s rushed over, grabs me by the other arm, and they take me back to the kitchen food-prep place.  “These men are communicating with each other!”, I tell the Flight Attendant.  I explain breathlessly, what I’ve observed, what my instinct and intuition tell me, sounding like a nut-case, I’m sure.  I ask frantically, “Are they friends or family members who just weren’t able to get their seats together?”…”I can’t tell you that.” she says in a prissy-business voice.  Well, shoot-a-mongay, life would be a lot easier if this woman would just spill her guts and tell me if this is so!

Suddenly…*Ding*…the light-bulb goes off in my mind.  That little voice in my head says:  “Get off this plane.”

“I want off.” I say suddenly and solidly.

“You can’t get off now, it’s too late, no one can get off this plane now.” she says, looking deep into my eyes with deadly finality and a “I-wish-this-woman-would-shut-up”,  “why-on-my-flight” stare.  At this point, less strong-willed individuals would have meekly crawled back to their seat in abject submission.

When we’re in dangerous predicaments, our mind tends to speed up and figure things out in some sort of time-warpy way, so although all of this is happening in the matter of just a few minutes, at the same time my mind is racing with a solution…I know how to get off the plane.

I glance down ahead of me to see a metal tray all laid out with food, ready to serve.  In one fell swoop, I grab the tray and give a mighty ‘whoosh’ towards the ceiling of the plane– food splatters everywhere.  I then start banging the empty tray on the wall, on the counters, acting like a raving lunatic, I’m sure.

It worked.

The next thing I know, we’re doing a Walk-of-Shame through the airport surrounded by a swarm of armed security guards.  And I could care less.  I’m so relieved to be off the plane, I could get down and kiss the ground.

You think this is the end of this dream?  I thought so too, but there was one more scene:
Out of no where come these guys in suits and ties and shades.  They’re motioning to the security guards, ‘bring them this way’, they’re saying without actually saying anything.
I was right, I realize, something was very wrong.

Joe and I found ourselves at a long table in a windowless room, where these men– whoever they were– slapped down several great big books full of mug shots, the books probably 5 inches thick.
“Can you identify these men?” one of them asks me.

And this is where my dream ends, Joe and I pouring over mug shots
__________________
 
I find it a sad sorry state of civilization when someone’s fear of flying isn’t based on the usual stuff– bad weather, pilot error, mechanical failure, but on the threat of terrorism.  You hear people complain about all the hoopla you have to go through to board a plane now-a-days, and how long it takes, and how inconvenient it is (whine, whine, whine).
 
Well, I gotta’ tell you, I want to know– with 100% assurance– that when I get on a plane, it’s going to go where it’s expected to go, and it’s going to get there all in one piece.  I don’t care if the check in process has to start the day before departure.  I’ll wait.
 
Hippie Culture
 

The Witch's Desk: The Deceased & External Events

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Hello Ms. Amythyst! I first would like to mention how much your website and the text I have purchased from you has empowered me. I am looking for guidance. Now, my issues are most likely more than I can touch on one email, but it involves witchcraft. Now, if you do get this message (goddess willing) I will kind of give a synopsis… My grandmother was Wiccan before I was born, but reassigned herself as Christian. Ever since her death, very terrible things have happened to our family. I have no idea if these things are related, but knowing the darker side… I thought I’d check in with a professional. I would like to mention that I looked up Wiccan beliefs because of my belief in crystal healing. Not because of her past. I am new to this but very positive of the teachings. I have just realized I am getting ahead of myself haha. I would love to get a response before I get too excited! Thank you

Interesting.  You are sort of wondering, as I’m understanding this, if your grandmother and her Wiccan practices could have anything to do with the unfortunate external incidents you and your family have experienced since her death.

There’s a very simple way to look at this:  through your grandmother’s own soul and her curiosity and experimentation with very different spiritual paths.

If the soul survives, and the soul is viewed as that internal part of us which encompasses not only the sub-conscious but our conscious mind and our inherent intelligence as well, one could surmise that your grandmother may have very confusing views of the after-life, and divinity, heaven and hell, as well as a warped view of punishment.  If I look at this situation from this viewpoint, I’m thinking that your grandmother needs to know that everything is okay, that she didn’t do anything wrong in her practice of witchcraft, or in her transition to Christianity.  She needs to know that all spiritual paths lead to grace.  Your grandmother needs to find peace, and you can help her do this.  One way is to simply tell her.  Even if you don’t think you have the gift of mediumship, this doesn’t mean that our loved ones can’t see and hear us after their passing.

Light a white candle, light some cleansing purifying incense, and have a chat with your grandmother.
Because I don’t have any particulars, and this is all the information that I have regarding your specific circumstances, I’ll let it stand here.  If you’d like to tell me more, feel free to do so.  The other alternative to this scenario would involve curses and hexing and that type of thing, which would be a whole different ball game, and wouldn’t necessarily have anything to do with your grandmother.
___________________
 
All questions are posted as received, no editing (except to delete identities), as all questions are posted anonymously.  You can contact me through the submission form in the sidebar on the home page at my website The Witch’s Corner.
 

Tarot: Becoming a Professional Reader

I
’ve been thinking about becoming a professional tarot reader. How is it different from reading for people for free?  What do I need to know to read tarot professionally?

How is it different– reading for free versus reading professionally?

For one thing, there’s way more pressure!  When a client is paying for a reading, they have to realize, and you have to realize, that they are paying you for your time, not the reading itself.  When people are paying for a service like this, a lot of them automatically assume that they are going to receive some sort of super spectacular, eye-opening, occult, mysterious, right-out-of-a-movie experience.  This is unrealistic. What they will receive is the information that Spirit is guiding you (the reader) to see, to pass along.  What they will receive is universal wisdom from a Higher Source.  What they very often receive is extremely good advice and insight from someone who is viewing their situation through the cards and from a vantage point that allows for a very unfettered unbiased view.  What they also might receive (and this is just as amazing to the reader as to the recipient) is a message from a  loved one who has passed.  What they will receive is an honest insightful connection through a form of divination that has proven to be remarkably accurate and incredibly inspiring.

What do you need to know to read professionally?

First, and most important, you have to be thoroughly familiar with the tarot.  You have to be practiced and comfortable reading for others.  You have to have self-confidence in your ability to read tarot cards, and in your own intuition.  You have to be able to read from a variety of tarot spreads, or no spread at all.  You have to be able to do readings in less than perfect conditions– such as in large busy noisy environments with a million distractions.

You have to be able to have empathy for people, for all different kinds of people, even people with whom you might have nothing in common.  You have to be totally nonjudgmental.  You have to be able to look at every type of circumstance and not let your own moral, religious, or personal feelings touch or taint the reading.  You have to learn to handle difficult people without loosing your cool, or your temper.

But most important…You have to really care.

Green Witchcraft: Herbs & Planetary Connections

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Old school Witchcraft 101…those of you who’ve thrown some magickal energy around (in a good way, of course), cast a few circles, chanted a few chants, those who have walked this path for any length of time and tapped into the magickal realm of witchcraft and wizardry, are going to be familiar with the information in this blog post, but be patient with me.  This post is for the new kids on the block.  (Better than being patient, why don’t you add your magickal two cents to this post with a comment by leaving some of your own wisdom for new witches to pick up on, things you’ve learned through your own experience and practice…thank you in advance.)

Below are the planets and their special energies and ten of my favorite herbs for each planet:

MOON– Day/Monday– this is the planet that is immersed in the energy of the goddess, feminine energy, intuition, inner mysteries, dreams, the filmy ethereal world of fairies and mythical creatures, and the element of Water

The herbs:  calamus, lemon balm, gardenia, passion flower, jasmine, lotus, moonwort, myrrh, sandalwood, poppy, camellia

MERCURY– Day/Wednesday– this is the planet connected to communication and creativity, it centers on intelligence and wonderful lucid moments of awareness, and the element of Air

The herbs:  fennel, lavender, lemongrass, marjoram, peppermint, almond, bittersweet, flax, horehound, lily of the valley

VENUS– Day/Friday– this is the planet connected to love and romance, beauty and luxury, it’s bathed in the warm glow of healthy narcissism and mutual attraction, sexuality, warm and fuzzy friendships, and the element of Water

The herbs:  apple, aster, magnolia, hibiscus, foxglove, geranium, blackberry, corn, lilac, willow

MARS– Day/Tuesday– this is the harsh, hot, in-your-face energy of the warrior, it encompasses strength, it protects, it challenges, it sets boundaries and patrols the parameters of our world, on the watch for negative energy, and it is connected to the element of Fire

The herbs:  cumin, garlic, ginger, holly, pine, tobacco, wormwood, coriander, allspice, hawthorn

JUPITER– Day/Thursday– this is the planet of growth and expansion, it touches and influences the financial commercial world we inhabit, it infiltrates the judicial system, the institutions that keep our society running smoothly, and it’s influenced by the element of Earth

The herbs:  anise, dandelion, sage, nutmeg, witch grass, clove, honeysuckle, hyssop, maple, fig

SATURN– Day/Saturday– the dark side, the shadow world is found here, the place that so many tend to tip-toe through, but the energy so often needed, this is the planet that will bring the truth to light and punish those who have harmed others, and it’s connected with the element of Earth and Fire

The herbs:  skullcap, slippery elm, wolf’s bane, morning glory (devil’s guts), hemlock, hemp, belladonna, comfrey, mimosa, knot weed

A Summerland Ritual: Honoring the Dead


The Pagan has a very different view of the afterlife than the Christian; and even within the Pagan community, you will find diverse beliefs about what happens to us when our bodies die. However you choose to look at death and what comes afterwards, the event itself will be marked, as all major events in a life generally are– with a ritual.

Items Needed:

 1. A white pillar candle representing the deceased
2. A photo of the individual

Besides the regular ritual tools, you will choose a white pillar candle to represent the deceased. You may want to carve the individual’s name into it. This candle could also be adorned and decorated with herbs, sparkles, seashells, stones, ribbons, etc., or whatever else that resonates with the energy of the deceased– buttons from their clothing, beads from one of their necklaces.

The altar could also be decorated with flowers that were special to this individual, as well as personal items such as mementos from milestone occasions, old toys, things the individual may have collected, or items connected to an interest they pursued in life.

This ritual does not have to be conducted in a cast circle. However, the perimeter of the area could be set with white candles, white stones, bouquets of flowers, or bunches of herbs, and a purifying incense such as sandalwood.

1. When family and friends are gathered, the Priestess will stand before the altar, saying:

“As we all come from the Goddess to experience life; in death so shall we return to Her to experience peace.”

2. The Priestess will then light the altar candles, including the white pillar candle. Holding aloft the special white pillar candle, she will say:

“(name of deceased),
By the element of Earth, you were grounded in the physical world.
By the element of Air, you were open to knowledge and communication.By the element of Fire, you were inspired with passion.
By the element of Water, you could dream your dreams.
So now, by Earth, by Air, by Fire, by Water…shall you pass to the next stage of your existence.”


3. The Priestess will then return the white candle to the altar. At this point, she may give a short eulogy on the deceased and his/her life; or family members and friends can be invited to come forward and relate memories and stories.

4. A ‘cakes & wine’ ritual can be incorporated into the ceremony at this point, if the family members wish.

 *Note: You’ll find a “Cakes & Wine” ritual  Here

5. When these aspects of the ritual are complete, the Priestess will take her place at the altar, raise the white pillar candle before the assembled group and say:

“(name of deceased),
Merry we meet,
And merry we part,
Until we merry meet again.”

6. The Priestess will then extinguish the flame of the white pillar candle. She may step forward and present this candle to the deceased’s closest relative, spouse, or partner.
____________________
 
The source for these rituals:  The Gray Witch’s Grimoire
 
Book 2 SMALL
 
 

The Witch's Cauldron: Money, Money, Come to Me

cauldron 1

When it comes to money spells, it’s become common place to equate these magickal endeavors with such sanctimonious cliques as ‘I’m only doing this spell for necessities’, ‘money spells are not done to make you rich’, ‘only ask for what you need’, blah, blah, blah. Ya, right– and who believes this. There isn’t anyone who wouldn’t love casting a money spell, only to wake up the next morning filthy rich. If I could– I would, and so would a lot of people, they just won’t admit it.

But what we view as the successful manifestation of these spells, and what the universe views as successful manifestation of these spells are often two very different things.
This was brought home to me one fine summer day.

One of my daughters and I were going to take a walk together. When they were younger, I would love doing this on an individual basis in order to have one on one time with each child. This was also the day I was casting a money spell, and I was just finishing up this little ritual, and kind of hurrying through the end of it, as my daughter was calling to me, ready to go for her walk.
The green candle was still perking along, flaming in magickal anticipation, as we started off down the road together.

We had gone quite a ways when we decided to turn onto a dead-end gravel road. The end of this road stopped at a wire fence, staunchly held in place with large square posts. Beyond the fence was a wide grassy pasture, where a beautiful horse was lazily grazing and swatting at flies with its thick tail. Surprisingly, the horse came when we called, and we were enthralled to be able to touch this beautiful animal and to look into its big brown eyes.

We were leaning on one of the large square posts supporting the fence, and I just happened to glance down to see a very small square object partially buried in the dirt.

“What’s that?”, I ask my daughter.

She bends down to retrieve it, and brings up a very dirty piece of paper, folded several times into a tight square. She begins unfolding it, and unfolding it, and unfolding it, until it is fanned out in her hands.

Her eyes open wide in astonished amazement…it is a $10.00 bill.
 
 
(The above text is an excerpt from
Natural Magick the Gray Witch Way)
 
horse 1
 
Money, Money…Come to ME!
money spells– click  Here
 
 

Find the Magick: Rosemary & Mint Suave Shampoo

 
I have lots of hair, and I’ve tried lots of products– expensive and not– and I always come back to a tried and true shampoo and brand that’s always worked for me…Suave.  The line that they have now, the one we’re going to look at in this post, is relatively new– or at least it is in our area.  It’s in a sage green bottle, and it comes in a variety of herbal mixtures.  I love them all, but the one I’m using right now is “Rosemary & Mint”.
 
So, let’s get down to the nitty-gritty and look at some of the ingredients and the magickal energy:
 
Eucalyptus:
Element: Air; Planet: Moon; Energy: Feminine
Uses include great healing properties, kills germs, infections, eases lung congestion, heart stimulant. Attracts healing vibrations and protection. Use to purify and cleanse any space of unwanted energies. Also useful in dream and sleep pillows.
 
Spearmint:
Element: Water; Planet: Venus; Energy: Feminine
Healing, love and protection while sleeping. Burn for healing magick, especially for respiratory conditions. Carry for healing. Use in ritual baths for strength and vitality. Write a wish on paper and wrap it in spearmint leaves; place in a red cloth and sew with red thread, then keep in a safe and secret place — by the time the scent is gone, your wish should have come true.
 
Aloe:
Element: Water; Planet: Moon; Energy: Feminine
Protection and luck. Place on the grave of a loved one to promote peaceful energy. Thought to relieve loneliness and assist with success. Hang in the home to attract luck and protection for those who live there. Grow in the home to provide protection from household accidents. Burn on the night of a full moon to bring a new lover by the new moon.
 
Lemon Grass
Element: Air; Planet: Mercury; Energy: Masculine
Psychic cleansing and opening, used in lust potions.
 
Rosemary
Element: Fire; Planet: Sun; Energy: Masculine
Protection, love, lust, mental powers, exorcism, purification, healing, sleep, youth. Burn to purify and cleanse. Use in love and lust incenses and potions. Use for healing of all kinds. A tea of rosemary causes the mind to be alert. Circulatory, digestive and nerve stimulant. Heals headache, depression, and halitosis.
 
Lavender
Element: Air; Planet: Mercury; Energy: Masculine
Magickal uses include love, protection, healing, sleep, purification, and peace. Promotes healing from depression. Great in sleep pillows and bath spells. Believed to preserve chastity when mixed with rosemary. Burn the flowers to induce sleep and rest, then scatter the ashes around the home to bring peace and harmony. Use in love spells and sachets, especially those to attract men.
suave rosemary mint shampoo. I LOOOVEEE Aveda products, but now that I am broke. I cannot afford them :( So i was so excited to see this. Works just as well. It cleans hair well, removes build up, and doesn't strip hair. The mint helps scalp feel revitalized. It also smells wonderful.

The Witch's Desk: FAQ...Can You Help Me?

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All questions are posted as received, no editing (except to delete identities), as all questions are posted anonymously.  You can contact me through the submission form in the right column on the home page at my website The Witch’s Corner.

1.  Well I don’t really know how to cast a circle and there are some things about a money bottle I don’t understand and the mojo bag also help thank u

First, Witch’s Bottles

Witches’ bottles are an old form of magick wherein the spell, in the form of personal effects, herbs, and a variety of objects, are deposited in a glass jar or bottle. The container is then sealed up with wax and used in a variety of ways, depending upon it’s purpose. Money bottles can be kept near the front door where they are visible and handy, and you can grab them and give them a shake from time to time to keep the energy moving towards manifestation. Witches’ bottles for protection might be buried on your property, as near the threshold of your front door as possible. A wild and wooly bottle, meant to kick some magickal butt or get rid of a pesky problem, will be buried as far away from your land as is physically possible and reasonable. A bottle meant to conjure love, well, I’d tuck that beneath the bed, where the energy will pool and puddle, perk and boil, till the damn bursts and love and passion bloom.

You can use any kind of bottle that has a mouth large enough to deposit some of the more unusual items for your spell. My personal favorite is a glass bottle that contains my favorite cold coffee drink. I rinse these out and save them for Witches’ Bottles– the ultimate in recycling. They’re just the right size.

Witches’ Bottles are easy spells to cast, fun to put together, and long potent lasting magick.
Circle Casting…You’ll find a circle casting ritual at my website by clicking Here

To cast most magick, you will want to create sacred space in which to work; space that is cleansed, consecrated, and reinforced against negative energy and entities. This space will hold and contain magickal energy as it builds, until you are ready to release it into the universe, sometimes with explosive abruptness. This space will give you the reassurance of protection, so that you can concentrate on your spell casting or ritual, knowing that you are safe– physically mentally, and spiritually– knowing that nothing will interfere with you or the energy within your circle. This space will provide a place of beauty and serenity, in which to invoke Deity.

Whether or not the boundaries of your magick circle are marked with physical objects…a ring of stones, a silver cord, bouquets of flowers, or candles; you most likely will feel the invisible energy of this circle as a shift in temperature, the sensation of being closed within a small space, a tingling sensation on the soles of your feet, or a slight change of pressure around your head or inner ear. Some people experience a physical sensation within the circle, and others do not. It may depend on an individual’s physical sensitivity to various energies. Even if you experience no sensations within the magick circle, know that this space, when properly cast, is as solid and real and sacred as the most intimidating cathedral, or the quaintest neighborhood church.

Mojo Bags
…You’ll find more info Here

The magick of the mojo bag can be yours.  The ancient practice of combining spell ingredients for particular intentions in small bags and pouches is an ancient one, and a magick that has proved particularly powerful.  Mojo bags can be carried in your purse or pocket, tucked beneath your pillow, worn from a cord or chain around your neck, tucked in an enemy’s personal space, or even dismantled and thrown to the wind…You’ll know what to do.

I have a whole section in my online book devoted to mojo bags with directions on making your own with correspondences for a number of intentions…”These enchanting magickal charms can be carried and integrated into your life in a variety of ways. Mojo bags to enhance your dreams or to prevent nightmares can be tucked beneath your pillow, releasing their magick and fragrance right under your nose each night. Mojo bags for prosperity can be carried in your purse, rubbing elbows with your wallet or checkbook, bringing you success and plenty in the financial world. Mojo bags for love and employment, for protection and hexing, can all be created to move energy along, to invoke spirits, to create change, and to shake up the mundane world in a million different magickal ways.”

Some of the information above was taken from my online book, “Natural Magick the Gray Witch Way”

2.  Hello Amythyst this (Name Deleted) and you once did a reading for me and was about who thought at the time was my soul mate only to find out for my goddess Hecate my true soul mate is Gabriel and that the (Name Deleted) guy was just somebody I was sing to help. It turns out that I am still waiting for my true soul mate and I want him in my life and I feel alone and want somebody do love me too. I feeling confused with my life and want to know why my life. I want to know why I am never lucky with anything I do? I feel like I never get anywhere and I think more about helping other people but am to worried to help myself. I feel that if I try to make my life better that everything will not work out. I just want to be happy. I am not happy with the way my life is. Can you help me?

I see several questions within this question…

First:  Can I help you?…Basically, no.  Up to a point–  I can listen to you, I can encourage you, I can comfort you, I can advise you– I can read for you, I can make suggestions; but in the end, ultimately, you are responsible for your own happiness, you are responsible for your own decisions, you are responsible for your own actions or inaction.

“I feel that if I try to make my life better that everything will not work out…”…So you’re saying that you’re so afraid of failure you’re not even going to try?  (If you don’t try, you’ll never succeed.)  Are you saying that it’s better to live a life of unhappiness and discontent, rather than to make the effort to change it?

One of the first questions to ask yourself is– What do I have to do to improve my life?  Think about every area of your life, from relationships, to employment, to spirituality, to health (both mental & physical).  Make a list…What do I need to do to improve my life?  How many things on this list are do-able in the short term, like now; and how many things on this list are long-term issues that you should start working on now in order to make the future better?  Once you’ve made this list, you can’t just sit forever and ponder on it, you actually have to get out there, contact the right people, and start things in motion.

One thing about this that irks me is the fact that women in general have a tendency to be thrown completely for a loop when a relationship doesn’t work out.  It’s sad, yes; it’s disappointing, yes; but it’s not the end of the world.  You need to be a whole and complete, happy and content human being on your own before you’re ready to enter into a relationship with anyone.  I actually think that some women benefit from a period of time on their own, time to find their center, time to learn about who they really are and what they really want out of life.  Some women need a period of time to themselves to gain confidence in their ability to fend for themselves, to make good decisions, to handle business, to delve into their creative sides.  Some women just plain benefit from time to themselves, period.

My advice?…Stop pining for this guy you broke up with.  Stop looking for spiritual mates in the ether world.  Concentrate on this world, this life– take the idea of potential partners out of the picture all together.  What do you want to do with your life?  You said that you wanted to help people– How do you do this?  Does this touch your soul and make you feel good inside, good about yourself, good about the world?  Concentrate on this aspect of life.

If you’re meant to find your soul mate, you will, when the universe and Spirit decide it’s time.  Stop wasting so much of your energy fretting over this issue.  In order to draw good things into your life, you have to surround yourself with and project positive energy– work on this.

Learn to love yourself.

15
 

Tarot: 2 of Swords

2 of Swords

What a dilemma– you’re walking a tightrope with no safety net.  You have decisions to make.  You have to decide which way to go, but there are so many obstacles standing between you and an intelligent solution to your predicament.  This card also emphasizes to me how much of life we stumble through without being aware, really aware-in-the-moment, of life and all its subtle nuances.  We miss so much, even with all five senses, and sometimes even with all six.

We can be our own worst enemy, living a life of denial, blind-folded.  How does that old saying go– “You’ve got blinders on”.  (Or maybe the proverbial rose-colored glasses.)  Sometimes I think we just try to convince ourselves that everything is good because we don’t want to admit what’s wrong and what needs fixing.  This is the point which makes all the difference in so many people’s lives:  you have those people who give up and admit defeat; you have people who try their damnedest to change things but fail; and then you have those people who don’t give up until they succeed.
I don’t know about you, but I want to be in that third group.

That’s why I view this card as a “Wake-up Call”…and so should you.

 

Herbs: The Magickal Acorn

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The Acorn:
 
Good luck, protection, wisdom, and personal power.  A dried acorn is an excellent natural amulet for keeping a youthful appearance.
 
Technically, I’m not sure if the acorn counts as an “herb”, since it springs from the mighty Oak Tree…however, I do know that it most definitely is full of magickal energy, and it is part of the sacred world of plants, so we’ll include it here.  Just so you know, I have an entire glass container full of acorns for my own magickal use. :)
 
The lore:
 
The oak is a sacred tree to many cultures and spiritual practitioners, including the Druids. There is a Nordic tale of the great god Thor sheltering beneath a mighty oak tree during a storm.  The goddess Diana is often depicted wearing a necklace of acorns.  The Celts and Druids found the oak tree especially symbolic of the Samhain season.  The tree is a symbol of the Horned God, Herne (or Cernunnos)
 
The acorn is considered the first sacred food of civilization.  It’s symbolic of security and abundance, and it counteracts loneliness, illnesses, and pain.  It’s energy aids in maintaining longevity, draws good luck, and preserves the illusion of youth.
 
You can identify your true love by labeling two acorn caps with your name and the name of your beloved.  Float them in a bowl of water, if they drift together, you’ve made a successful match, if they float apart…so does your love.
Or as Dr. Jung suggested, an Oak tree becomes an Oak tree, not a radish.  So it is with human beings.
For more magickal information on herbs,
follow this link:
 

The Witch's Desk: Women Learning to Trust Women

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I watched a wonderful DVD series this week highlighting the birth of feminine spirituality.  It was full of all the inspiring women of the time– Starhawk, Jean Bolyn, Merlin Stone, Shekinah Mountainwater, as well as a score of other eloquent and beautiful Ladies (authors, activists, film producers, artists, etc.).  The main concept that struck me was the idea that the emergence of the patriarchal system, along with the fall of the goddess, all contributed to the erosion of feminine spirituality, the end of matriarchy, and its biggest impact was on women’s relationships with other women.  We lost the “Sisterhood”.  We became suspicious of each other.  Something was stolen from us, something almost intangible, something undefinable. The unity was gone, the respect was gone, the connection was warped and broken.

With the advent of the snake and the apple story, the whole women-are-responsible-for-the-downfall-of-civilization phenomena, respect and power, camaraderie and trust, were all lost for the women of the world.  The new patriarchal culture threw a dark shadow on womanhood, and it was contagious, contagious even to us, to women.  My mother and I talked about this once, how women behave towards other women, the back-stabbing, the bitchiness, the suspicion.  It was an accurate observation, and it left us to ponder.

Can it be repaired?  And if so, what can be done to fix it?

1.  We come towards each other already suspicious, suspicious of motives, intentions, sincerity…
and this crap involves all aspects of life– beginning with men (husbands, boyfriends, significant others).  Why?  Why don’t we trust other women in our lives with our partners, even when we have no legitimate reason not to?  Is it just a hormonal mating Neanderthal thing?  I hope not.  I’d like to think that we’ve evolved past this.  Maybe it’s our own insecurity– Are we attractive enough, are we too fat, are we too thin, are we satisfying sexual partners, are we successful enough, are we accomplished enough?  Is this other woman prettier, is she younger, is she more accomplished, more successful, more desirable?

We have to work at building and maintaining a healthy ego.  We have to learn to appreciate ourselves, to meet our full potential, to find the joy in life.  We have to learn to be all that we were meant to be; and we have to learn to be proud of this.  We have to learn to relish pride in ourselves.  This isn’t being egotistical; it’s being healthy, it’s being honest, it’s being strong.

2.  We’ve got backstabbing down to a fine art…

There is nothing worse than a hen-party that takes on a very dark energy when the hens start pecking at a missing sister.  Why do we do this?  And it gains momentum, it really does, as each woman in turn comes up with a negative observation, a piece of gossip, something that they would never dream of saying to the victim’s face.  Why?…enjoyment, in some weird and twisted way?…a primeval instinct to travel in packs, and to gang up on a member who doesn’t fit into all the correct forms, all the politically/socially correct boxes and niches?  Or is it a power play, since we still obviously possess pack mentality, and there has to be an Alpha female, so we’ll spar and battle until only one is left standing?

3.  There is no sense of “Sisterhood”, no sense of loyalty, real loyalty, the old-fashioned kind...

“I’ll be your friend till the end.”…what a beautiful sentiment, but I don’t believe a word of it.  It’s more like…”I’ll be your friend until you don’t conform to my idea of what you should be; I’ll be your friend until someone else comes along that I’m more infatuated with, I’m more in-tune with; until someone else comes along that satisfies me emotionally in the friend department, someone who agrees with me, someone who will follow me.  I’ll be your friend, until I don’t feel like it anymore.

I wrote a blog post a few years ago, in which I describe my idea of a friend and ‘sister’…

“A Sister, should be a Sister, should be a Sister…*Forever*.  It’s not a ‘when-I-feel-like-it’ thing; it should not rely on the conditions of outside influences, human frailties, insecurities, or pettiness.  A Sister is someone you grow old with; and on your way to this destination, you pass all the other stages of life– bumpy, smooth, unpleasant, and joyous– and you know, without a crumb of a doubt, that your Sister will travel this road with you, shoulder to shoulder, to the end and beyond.”

4.  There is no common spiritual ground (the goddess) in today’s culture, patriarchy dominates the scene…

I know that I’ve personally lost friends because of my spiritual path– from Jehovah’s Witnesses, to Christian Fundamentalist, to just plain Christians in the mainstream.  If we don’t travel the same spiritual path, apparently, we cannot travel together at all.  Why?  It’s joyous to share a friendship with someone who views life and spirituality in the same way, but that doesn’t mean we can’t embrace friends who forge different trails.  There can always be a general meeting place in the center of the forest, a sunny clearing where we can all lay aside our differences to gather together and share life’s experiences, and plans, and disappointments, and victories.

This is the hard part of this essay.  I feel that the reader will expect me to end with some magickal solution to this problem, some instant fix, and I don’t think this is possible.  In that case, it makes this blog post more of an observation, which leaves more questions here, at the end, than it did to start with. But I believe we have to look back, far into the past, when the Goddess ruled the earth and woman’s power was respected. We have to look back, far into the past, when society viewed woman, in all stages of her life, with reverence and awe.  We have to look back, far into the past, to an ancient time, when women had respect for themselves…and respect for their sisters.

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