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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
The Oracle of Water: Ocean

Humans have been navigating and charting the seas at least since the Phoenicians, yet the ocean remains the last frontier. Even outer space is not as mysterious to us as the depths of the oceans, of which an estimate of only about 5% has been explored and charted. This is staggering considering the ocean covers 70% of our planet.

This is not unlike our own emotions or subconscious which, among many other things, the ocean represents. Our subconscious and darker sides are often as deep and mysterious to us as the abyss. There is no escaping that we are incredibly emotional and watery creatures. This also makes us magical for, as anthropologist Loren Eisley put it, “If there is magic on this planet, it is contained in water.” We are water, and we therefore contain magic as well as records and ancestral memories in that strange medium. Also containing salt, we are like walking micro-oceans, ever connected to our source.

While there are different names for the different parts of the ocean, it is all one ocean in the end, one whole being connected all over the planet. This interconnection is echoed throughout nature and the human condition, and in all our individual lives.

In many traditions, the ocean represents the primordial source of life itself. Just as life emerged from the depths of the ocean in evolutionary narratives, so too does it signify the origins of creation in spiritual contexts. It is often seen as the womb of existence, where all life began and where all life returns. In this sense, the ocean becomes a metaphor for the eternal cycle of birth, death, and rebirth.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

Baba Yaga's Lawn

You can tell which house is Baba Yagá's by the lawn. The grass around it grows so thick, so lush, and so green that (I swear) you could pasture a cow on it.

It also, I swear, grows faster than that of any other house on the block.

I should know. I'm the one that mows it.


(You've heard of Vasilissa the beautiful, right: the one who does housework for Baba Yaga?

Well, I'm Steven the grounds-keeper. I do yardwork for Baba Yaga.)



In her shrine in Pig's Eye, MN (a.k.a. “St” Paul), Baba Yaga—the fearsome old forest-witch of Russian folklore—has been receiving prayers and offerings for more than 30 years now.

Say what you will about Old Boney Legs, she's anything but antisocial. In fact, she shares her shrine with the ancestors, the Sun, and the Moon.

Also with Poverty, Famine, Disease, and Death. Really: they've got altars and everything.


In the Yard of Baba Yaga

It's not just grass that grows richly in Baba Yaga's yard.

Now, in May, the dandelions are numerous and huge, practically the size of peonies. The nettles here sting worse than anywhere else. They also make a delicious soup.

Talking with the resident priest before I begin my tour of grounds-keeping, I shake my head.

“Whatever you're doing,” I tell him, “it sure does seem to be working.”



It's a very Slavic way to see things, though of course Slavs aren't the only ones to think apotropaically.

Apo-tropaic: literally, “turning away, averting.”

Keep the dangerous ones happy, and maybe they'll leave you alone.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

 Are you making beans on toast wrong ...


I always make baked beans for Beltane.

There are reasons and reasons. Beltane is often our first outdoor feast of the year, and baked beans are quintessential picnic food. Beltane is also a busy time and, benefiting from long, slow baking as they do, you can make them well before festivities get underway. They're cheap, nourishing, and good food. Everybody likes them. They likewise guarantee (as I make them, anyway) at least one vegetarian entree on the Beltane board.

Another seasonal connection: a friend once suggested, only half-humorously, that with the advent of Outdoor season, breaking wind becomes somewhat less socially problematic.

(The secret of good baked beans? Easily told: be generous with the sugar. For years, health-conscious kind of guy that I am, I skimped on the sugar, and my beans suffered as a result. To be everything that they should be, baked beans need plenty of sweet, paired with a nice, healthy dollop of cider vinegar.)

Baked beans were always one of my father's favorite foods. Not long before he died, I finally thought to ask him why.

My father grew up hungry: in a large family, during the Depression. “When you had baked beans for supper,” he told me, “the pot would go around the table and, by the time it got back to you, there were still enough left that you could have more.

Indeed. Even after a hungry coven has eaten its fill—witching is hard work—there are always enough baked beans left over for one of my very favorite breakfasts, beans on toast, next morning.

Beans on toast is part of the classic British full breakfast. This is not, I gather, a tradition of long-standing—dating, as it does, to the era of rationed food after World War II—but oh, it's good.

My friend Zoa and I once traveled to Malta to visit the megalithic temples there. I can truly say that Maltese food was some of the worst that I have ever eaten: bad Italian and bad British, mostly. No whole grains, no fresh fruit, no fresh vegetables. (Hopefully, in the intervening years, things have changed for the better.) For days, we lived basically on bad pizza and pasta with insipid red sauce. (Spaghetti sauce, on the other hand, does not benefit from generous sugaring.) After a week, we were both hopelessly constipated.

Then one morning, there on the breakfast menu, salvation: beans on toast. We were both so excited at the prospect that the waitress thought we were making fun of her.

Praise be to Mother Bean. Together with her partner, Father Grain, she maketh complete our protein: Complementarity writ large.

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It's time to revisit the topic of Asatru kindreds in my local area because the last time I posted about it was before the pandemic. I often get emails from people looking for a kindred to join in my local area, the Las Vegas valley. I received another such email recently and here is my reply:

"My kindred, American Celebration Kindred, is almost ready to accept new members but not quite. Our main ritual house had a pest control problem this winter and we're waiting until it's bug free to resume holding rituals and get-togethers. We've been closed to new members since the first Covid lockdowns started but are hoping to resume accepting new members soon. American Celebration Kindred does both Asatru and American holidays. If you're interested, I'll let you know when we're ready to meet new members.

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Attraction Action Enchantment

I know this has happened to you, too. You met someone at a party, or you had a brief but meaningful moment in line for coffee, or perhaps you exchanged looks of longing on the train crossing town on your way to work. Now, your only hope is that chance will bring you together, right? Wrong!

Try this surefire attraction spell:

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The Oracle of Water: Reflection

Keywords: Self-Awareness, Introspection, Duality, Meditation, Inner Wisdom

Reflection represents the still and calm waters of introspection, inviting us to gaze into the mirror of our own soul. This feature of water embodies the power of self-awareness, urging us to turn our attention inward and explore the depths of our own consciousness, and our subconscious.

Like the serene surface of a lake, reflection offers a calm space for meditation, allowing us to quiet the mind and tune into our inner wisdom. This modern world has a tendency to cut us off from our true selves and our wisdom. But we must be willing to slow, stop, be still and observe ourselves, see how we are reflected in the world and in others around us. This is how we come to know ourselves, which we must before we can really know and understand others.

Reflections can reveal more than just what is seen on the surface. Scrying into water, glass, and other reflective objects is an ancient art that is an especially potent way to tap into our inner knowing. Different things may be revealed when in a trance state or altered state of consciousness, when we can see beneath the surface literally and figuratively.

Reflection represents the duality of our nature, highlighting the tension between the conscious and subconscious, the rational and intuitive, and the light and shadow aspects of our being. Just as water can reflect our physical image, so too can these reflections reveal our inner truths, desires, and fears. By embracing this duality, we can integrate our conflicting aspects and discover a more harmonious and balanced state of being. But we can’t know or integrate what we can’t see or accept.

When Reflection appears, it may indicate a need to slow down, quiet the mind, and listen to our inner voice. It can signal a period of introspection, self-reflection, and meditation, guiding us to explore our thoughts, emotions, and desires. By embracing the stillness and calm of reflection, we can gain a deeper understanding of ourselves and the world around us, and better determine who we want to be and where we want to go.

Copyright © 2024 Meredith Everwhite – All Rights Reserved

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Lunar Almanac—Twelve Months of Full Moons

Many of our full moon names come from medieval books of hours or from Native American spirit-ways. Here is a list of rare names from these two branches of traditions that you may want to use in your lunar rituals.

January: Old Moon, Chaste Moon; this fierce Wolf Moon is the time to recognize your strength of spirit

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