Middle Earth Magic: Inspired Ideas and Seasonal Spells for Your Enchanted Life

I grew up on a farm in West Virginia and learned much about herbs, trees, animals, gardening, foraging  and so much about nature. I incorporate this wisdom I learned from elders in my family into my spellwork. When I finally left the farm, I majored in Medieval Studies, my attempt to emulate my idol, J.R.R. Tolkien. All these influences led me to my own blended brew which I call "middle earth magic," containing a mix of the modern and the time-tested "old ways." 

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Cerridwen Greenleaf

Cerridwen Greenleaf

    Cerridwen Greenleaf has worked with many of the leading lights of the spirituality world including Starhawk, Z Budapest, John Michael Greer, Christopher Penczak, Raymond Buckland, Luisah Teish, and many more. She gives herbal, crystal and candle magic workshops throughout North America. Greenleaf's graduate work in medieval studies has given her deep knowledge she utilizes in her work, making her work unique in the field. A bestselling author, her books include Moon Spell Magic, The Book of Kitchen Witchery, The Magic of Gems and Crystals and the Witch’s Spell Book series.  She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.  
Hedge Witch Medicine: Nettle Tea

After a week like we all just experienced, boost your mood and immune system with herbs.  Nettle (Urtica dioica) Nettle has been used as a healer for untold centuries and relieves allergies, is an immune booster and can even help with a distended prostate. It is also a superfood and beloved for the nutrients. If you are working with fresh nettles, wear gloves to avoid the stinging. Cooking or drying removes any irritant. Any herb or health food store will have dried nettle or capsule form. Make nettle tea by steeping 2 teaspoons of leaves for ten minutes or take the capsules in recommended doses of 300 to 500 mg twice a day. Nettles are a hedgewitch's favorite and you'll soon see why. Take good care of yourself!

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Chinese Harvest Festival: Moons & Mooncakes

I am very fortunate to be marrying into a Chinese family so I have been learning about the traditions. Coming up this week is the official celebration of the Harvest Moon. In China, the full or Harvest Moon in October is celebrated with mooncakes, which are offered to the Goddess Chang-O, the Lady in the Moon. This is the time when wheat and rice are harvested, making it an important time of thanksgiving for food to have on hand through the winter season.

The rice and the wheat are baked into cakes that look like the big round moon up in the sky and are used as offerings, along with melons and pomegranates, to the goddess. The women making the mooncakes put their intentions into them by whispering secret wishes into the batter. The unifying action of blending and mixing the tasty cakes represents family harmony. One sweet aspect of this ritual is the selection of a young girl to enter the “heavenly garden.” At the ritual feast for the goddess of the Harvest Moon, this young lady becomes the prophet of her family and community, and she is urged to share her visions about the coming year and the prosperity of the village or the land. Feasting on mooncakes and other ritual foods is followed by games and singing under the bright light of Chang-O’s moon. Here is a traditional wish for the season

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Rose Quartz is Love in Mineral Form

We all get worn down now and again and, when that happens, we often feel blue or, at least in the doldrums a bit. If you have not other crystal, make sure to have rose uartz qon hand as it infuses you with self-love and brightens “the vibe” anywhere it is. I view self-love is a superpower and the real foundation of all true personal power. Widely known as the stone of unconditional love, the soft pink hunk of love known as rose quartz is said to attract and inspire love in all forms. It’s especially good for promoting self-love and emotional harmony.

It can be a teeny tiny pebble of pink or a big ol rock but you should have it near you, especially when you are feeling low. I say have some around at all time but, then again, I have crystals in every room. Keeping a piece of Rose Quartz out where we can see it, on your desk at work,   on your bedside table or next to the bathtub, can act as a powerful visual reminder to take a little bit of time for yourself.

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Healing Crystals For When You Are Freaking Out From Stress

I don’t know about you, dear ones, but many of my friends, family, coworkers and I are experiencing extremely high stress. Therefore, I feel called to offer what small wisdom I have for what you can do to counteract this lack of balance in your environment and our world.  As you may know, I am a strong believer in the calming and healing power of crystals. When people ask me, “How the heck could a piece of rock help heal my body?, I will point them to the wisdom of the chakra system.

It is becoming widely known that crystals can be curative for the emotional body, the spiritual body, and the physical body. And, we have learned that crystals can interact electromagnetically with people. The prehistoric medicine man and shamans knew instinctively how to harness this stone power and use it to enhance or stimulate energy; they never doubted the power of the unseen. Modern shamans talk about the body in a different way; they are in tune with and are working with the etheric body, the subtle life force that sustains the physical body and serves as the matrix for the metabolic functions. They work with the system of chakras (points of energy in the astral body that are associated with various parts of the physical body) and endeavor to make sure everything is in proper alignment. Illness beginning with misalignment of either the etheric body or physical body can result in a domino effect of maladies. Imbalance in the etheric body can cause low energy; depression; stress-related diseases such as shingles, ulcers, and migraines; and any number of other serious physical issues

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Spirit Guardians: Orishas of Santeria

On September 22, 1862, Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation. This is an excellent opportunity to celebrate freedom from oppression for the hardy and deeply spiritual Africans who kept their own religions alive despite the incredible odds against them. African slaves brought their native religion with them wherever they went. African spirituality is based on nature—water, rivers, plants, seashells, and all the elements of the world around them. When the Africans came to the Catholic lands in Central and South America, their African deities were blended with Catholic saints to make an interesting new religion called Santeria. It was their way of keeping their African religion alive, and it has worked well. These orishas are spirit guardians, similar to those honored in Candomble. All of life is believed to come from one great creative force, Oloddumare. Practitioners of Santeria believe that everyone has one orisha as a guardian throughout his or her life.

    Aganyu corresponds to Saint Christopher. This volcano god is the father of Chango and whose mother is Yemmu. He can protect you from harm but only if you make your appeal through Chango.

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Crystals to Enhance Your Energy in the New Season

We are approaching a new season. What can you do to greet the change with good energy? A marvelous way to take full advantage of the power of your crystals is to wear them in jewelry. Even better, you can make the jewelry you own magical by charging it—imbuing it with intention and purpose and power. Also, you can craft your own magical jewelry, which is perhaps the most powerful option of all because you hold your desires in mind as you put your enchantments together step by step and gem by gem.

 

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Crystal Talismans for Power and Protection

A talisman is an object that has been imbued with power. It can also provide protection and has magical properties. A talisman can be any article or symbol that you believe has mystical qualities. As we know, many gems and crystals have special innate powers. With a talisman, the special powers can be naturally present or instilled during a ritual. People often confuse amulets with talismans, but they differ in this significant way: Amulets positively protect the wearer from harm, evil, and negativity. Talismans actively transform the wearer to have certain powers. For example, the supernatural sword Excalibur, imbued with supremacy by the Lady of the Lake, gave King Arthur magical powers.

Grimoires offer instruction on making talismans. The reasons for using talismans are many—for love, for wealth, for luck with gambling, for the gift of a silver tongue, for a good memory, for the prevention of death. Whatever you can think of, there is probably a talisman for that exact purpose!

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