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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

Shame on

So: the NOA (Nannies of America) and Big Money want to create a "safe" Halloween on the last Saturday in October.

Just what we need: another fake holiday.

As is usual with Nannies and Big Money, of course, they're entirely missing, not just one point, but many.

The true power of Halloween lies precisely in its decentralized nature. No one owns it; no one controls it. It's not an official holiday anywhere. This is what vivifies it with its own irrepressible life. Any attempt to domesticate Halloween will inevitably fail. Like deer, and witches, it's wild by nature, undomesticable.

The only safe Halloween is a denatured Halloween. The great lure, and profound significance, of the holiday lies precisely in the fact that it's not safe. That's what makes it a rite of passage. On their own, kids get to tear around in public, in the dark, in the night. You take candy from strangers. That's why I loved it as a kid. That's why people love it today.

That the Nannies of the world and Big Money will get their way, I have little doubt. They usually do. Fine. Let them have their sham on the last Saturday in October if they like.

In that case—since, let's admit it—there's absolutely no way that real Halloween on the 31st is going to go away, we'll need a way to distinguish between the two Halloweens: the new and the old, the safe and the traditional.

Here's my proposal.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    A few years back, I took our youngest coven kid out trick-or-treating. What a blast! In this neighborhood, Halloween has become th
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    I loved Halloween as a kid. When I was too old to Trick or Treat myself I took my little sister around and that was fun too. Now
  • Erin Lale
    Erin Lale says #
    lol I love it, let them have their Shalloween. We'll still hold the real one. Halloween isn't even part of my heathen trad but it'

Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
Find Your Anchor

I am thinking that anchors are probably cast iron which can corrode, but the earliest ones were huge rocks. Ancient Greeks are alleged to have filled hollow logs with lead. But iron was the first choice of metal for anchors. Which then led me on to the fairy tradition of being averse to iron. Iron is only used when they wish to sever ties with a particular realm or dimension forever. Which may be why they landed on Iron Mountain when the Tuatha dé Danaan pitched up in Eireann. Also why they are alleged to have been piking it back to Iron Mountain after their defeat at the Second Battle of Moytura and their subsequent shift into the sídh.

The global news in grim and it is understandable why you might be rubbing some haemotite and mumbling 'Beam Me Up, Scotty!."

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One Minute Magic: Power Up With Crystals

Keep a magic wishing box on your desk. Every so often look at it and make a wish upon your heart’s desire. It’s easy to make: Take a bowl or empty box and fill it halfway with sand. Place these suggested wish stones in any arrangement you find pleasing.

 -agate for a new home,

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Pagan Pilgrimage, Basic Guidelines

The idea of making pilgrimages - effectively of travelling to a place perceived as sacred - has gained popularity among pagans. I often see people in various social media groups talking about making such journeys to places they believe have sacred qualities or associations or talking about trips they have made. The main questions I see people asking centre on how to do this in ways that are most respectful to the sacredness of the location, but often are rooted in a paradigm of interaction with these places that is humancentric and ultimately doesn't really respect the location. It can be hard to shift out of that mindset. 

I am speaking here as someone who has dealt with tourists and been a tourist, and who has seen firsthand the harm that humans do even when they are trying to engage in a sacred way with a place. Often this harm comes from short sightedness and failure to understand the full impact of their actions but sometimes its also from a very self-centred place. I've seen 5,000 year old historic sites treated like someone's own backyard, seen graffiti on standing stones, rubbish tied to rag trees and tossed into cairns, and painted 'So-and-So was Here' stones left at archaeological sites. None of this reflects best practices, and I believe that we, as a wider community, can do better. 

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs

Enchanted Table 

See this old banquet table
Made of sacred oak wood
From a small Mediterranean island
Where the people still worship Artemis.
Legend has it that Saint Joan once ate here,
Gathering strenght
Before she went to capture Rheims.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Night on Bald Mountain

I suppose you could call it the witches' Olympus.

A place both real and mythic, the Sabbat Mount stands at the center of Witch mythology, both modern and ancient. It is there that we gather for our broomstick jamborees, both legendary and—increasingly—actual.

The Sabbat Mount is a real, live place. While the best-known is probably the Brocken in Germany's Harz Mountains, it has many other incarnations as well. Where there are witches, there will also be Sabbat Mounts.

In France, the Puy de Dôme was well-known as a gathering-spot for witches; at its summit, in Gallo-Roman times, stood a temple to Mercury, interpretatio Romana of the witches' virile, naked god.

The famed Italian Monte Venere (“Mount Venus”) inspired Richard Wagner's opera Tannhauser; Mount Triglaf (“three-horn”) was the site of the wild Midsummer revels of the Ukrainian witches, subject of Modest Mussorgsky's Night on Bald Mountain.

Swedish witches gathered (and, apparently, still gather) at the Blåkulla (“black [or blue] hill”), often identified with the coastal island of Blå Jungfrun, the famed “Blue Maiden.”

In the New World, the Sabbat Mount of Pennsylvania's Deitsch country, the wooded hill known as the Hexenkopf (“witch's head”), was the site of witch revels past and present.

Here in the American Midwest, the wooded island in the middle of the Mississippi, now known as Trempealeau (“Stands-in-the-Water”) likewise plays host to Grand Sabbats both legendary and actual.

The Sabbat Mount is not merely the site of the Grand Convocation of the witches; it also marks the place where, in ancient times, the Horned, god of witches, descended from Heaven to bring Fire to the children of Earth. On the Sabbat Mount, Heaven and Earth conjoin.

Here's the mystery: although there are many Sabbat Mounts, they are all the same Mountain.

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Inspiration Infusion: Spell in a Cup

Your morning pot of tea can be a daily ritual you use according to you needs. If, upon rising, you feel a bit blue, brew up some bergamot. As you sip the soothing libration, you will feel you spirits lift and you can greet the day, stronger and infused with this simple and true magic. Along with healing and energizing properties, herbal teas can aid the mind. Try the following blends:

 Bergamot dissipates negativity and uplifts.

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