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SageWoman Blogs

At SageWoman magazine, we believe that you are the Goddess, and we're devoted to celebrating your journey. We invite you to subscribe today and join our circle...

Here in the SageWoman section of PaganSquare, our bloggers represent the multi-faceted expressions of the Goddess, feminist, and women's spirituality movements.

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The Witch's Year Tarot Spread

The season is upon us and the Witch's New Year is soon at hand. I have gotten in the habit of doing a Tarot Reading at Samhain, aligned with the Sabbats throughout that upcoming year as well as one at the start of the calendar year, aligned astrologically (sharing that nearer to Yule). 

The intention and flavor of many of the celebrations surrounding the Sabbats is one of a continued theme or thread of connection of one to the other creating a whole that can be used for magick, growth and deeper insights. Regardless of the theme you follow, that of the god and goddess, the cycles of the seasons, the flow of solar energy, or other-this tarot spread can be modified to align with those intentions. 

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Be the Crone You Want to See

I apologise to Anne and the wonderfuls of Pagan Square for an absence of nearly two months. But it really has been a wild ride since the August eclipses. If you think that those living outside the US are not interested in the country's politics, prepare to rearrange your throughts.

My sister-in-law, who is living with 'no further treatment' cancer was glued to the Kavanaugh hearings in Northern Ireland. A friend in Birmingham, England apologised for not being able to PM, because she watching them on BBC Live. Basically, the women of the world were triggered by all the news emanating from the land of my birth in September and early October. So, too, were many men, who came out admitting their own sexual assaults on Facebook.On so many levels people experienced every single stage of grief.

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Arianrhod, Welsh Star Goddess of Reincarnation

Arianrhod (ar i AN trod), Welsh Star Goddess of Reincarnation, is known as Silver Wheel, Silver Circle, High Fruitful Mother, and Sky Goddess. She is a primal figure of feminine power, a Celestial Mother Goddess who through her role as Goddess of Reincarnation, rules fertility and childbirth. 

Arianrhod also rules arts, magic, and manifestation. As the Goddess of the Silver Wheel she is associated with spinning and weaving. With her wheel she magically weaves the tapestry of life.

Divinatory Meaning

Be in the open mind of the initiate who seeks truth of self and of others. Seek the knowledge of past lives and release the past. Connect with the collective consciousness of your ancestors. Allow rebirth and renewal.

Her Story

Arianrhod, the most powerful child of the great Mother Goddess, Don, was very beautiful, with extremely pale skin. She was a virgin goddess in the ancient meaning of the word virgin a woman who is complete unto herself; a woman who needs no protection from a man. She enjoyed sexual freedom, with a distinct preference for mermen.

Her palace was found in the far North on the magical, rotating island of Caer Sidi, which probably means Revolving Castle, where she lived with her female attendants. The ancients believed that her domain and her castle, Caer Arianrhod, were in the Corona Borealis, the constellation of stars moving around the apparently motionless North Star. Legend tells us that poets and astrologers learned the wisdom of the stars at Caer Sidi.

She has also been known as the Silver Wheel that Descends into the Sea, which together with her preference for mermen and her son, Dylan, supports her strong association with the sea. 

Caer Sidi is also known as Annwn, the Otherworld, land of the dead. People were brought there when they died. As Silver Wheel, Arianrhod was responsible for the souls of warriors who fell in battle. She gathered them aboard her ship, the Oar Wheel. and transported them to Emania, also know as Moonland. In the Northern sky, whirling around the enduring stability of the north star, Arianrhod presided over the fates of departed souls, nurturing their journeys between lives. 

Things sacred to Arianrhod are the owl, the wolf, and the birch tree. The owl has long been associated with death, whereas the birch tree is the tree of new beginnings. To the Celts, the wolf was associated with the power of the moon. 

She was sister to Gwydion, King Math's successor and student of the magical arts. She was also the mother of two sons, Llew, a Sun God, and Dylan, a God of the Sea. Their birth was a consequence of magic and trickery, a story recounted in the fourth branch of the Welsh collection of stories, known as The Mabinogion, dating back in their oral form to the 4th century BCE. 

New fashions arrived and knowledge of fatherhood together with the idea of chaste virginity entered human consciousness. Arianrhod became enamored of the glamour of this fashion, yet with no intention or desire of practicing chastity. 

Arianrhod's uncle, the magician King Math, was under a strange taboo which required him to keep his feet in the lap of a virgin whenever he was not actively engaged in battle. Gwydion suggested his sister Arianrhod for this role, with a secret intention of his own, and he set out for Caer Sidi to present the offer to Arianrhod. 

During his stay with Arianrhod, Gwydion had a different suggestion for her: he proposed marriage. The true heir to the house of Don could only come through the female line and Gwydion wanted his seed to father that heir. But Arianrhod valued her position as an independent woman without need to be tied to a man and chose instead the excitement of court and the possibility of acquiring more magical powers herself.

Arianrhod journeyed with Gwydion to the castle of King Math, where the king demanded proof of her virginity: she had to step across a magical rod designed by Gwydion which caused her to birth two boys, products of liaisons with two different males, a merman and Gwydion. The first, whom Math named Dylan, fled to the sea and swam away. The second boy, unnoticed by all present, was scooped up by Gwydion, and raised in a magic forest. 

Thus, through guile and trickery, Gwydion forced Arianrhod to bear what became known as his foster child.

When Arianrhod learned of this betrayal, she laid three curses on the boy. She denied the child a name or the right to bear arms the right of Welsh mothers,which gives a clear indication of the  ancient power of women. But Gwydion tricked Arianrhod into granting them. The third curse - the boy shall have no wife of the race that is now on the earth,  Gwydion broke by creating a woman of flowers, Blodeuwedd, to be his son's wife. 

Humiliated, defeated, and betrayed, Arianrhod spent the rest of her days at Caer Arianrhod.  When the sea reclaimed the land, Arianrhod and her realm drowned and an epoch ended, but she lived in the hearts of her people for countless ages, nourishing their souls.

Arianrhod opens your heart to the flowing changes of the moon and the infinite possibilities of the stars.

Visit Judith's Etsy Shop to view and purchase her Celtic Goddess Oracle deck 

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A carpet of leaves

For anyone who sees trees as part of their spiritual landscape, it’s important to think about trees specifically and not generically. It can be tempting to approach any aspect of nature as an archetype or an idea, but that means we can end up engaging with our ideas about nature, and not what’s really going on around us.

The process of deciduous trees losing their leaves is a slow one if you track it carefully, and this year I am tracking it carefully. I observed the first significant changes of colour in leaves a couple of weeks ago. Clearly different species of trees turn and shed at a different rate while the weather conditions and temperature affects how long leaves stay on trees. From what I recall of previous years, I think it likely that oak will be the last to go, while horse chestnut turned first and ash followed.

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Potato/Wild Greens and Macrobiotic Cooking For Cancer

Hippocrates said many years ago, “Let your medicine be your food and let your food be your medicine!”This I have proven to be true.

A cancer survivor now for 25 years, I healed my ovarian cancer first with a diet given me by Monka, an ET from Mars, also known in Peru as Viracocha. Monka appeared on my lawn one afternoon as I was contemplating how to heal my ovarian cancer. He suggested I eat potatoes, wheat, watermelon and wild greens, focusing on potatoes, which I juiced and ate baked whole, or mashed with little else. 

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b2ap3_thumbnail_taino-women.jpgThe second Monday in October in the United States was officially made Columbus Day by President Richard Nixon in 1972 in order to commemorate the voyage of Christopher Columbus and his landing in the Taino people's lands, islands that are now referred to as the Caribbean. In 1992 a Quincentennial celebration marking the 500-year anniversary of Columbus's 1492 expedition was observed by the United States and Spain. Billions of dollars were spent by both countries. The photograph at right is of Taino Indigenous women.

To Native American communities and nations throughout the Americas, the 500-year celebration was a deeply concerning matter. It seemed that no one had ever learned their history, or cared, that the voyage of Columbus opened a widespread genocide from the most northern reaches of Canada to the tip of South America: tens of millions of Indigenous peoples were kidnapped and sold into slavery, sex trafficked, militarily slaughtered, and died by the transmission of European disease. This outright carnage was explicitly endorsed in the religious Doctrine of Discovery, a Papal rule of law, written in 1452 by Pope Nicholas V. The Romanus Pontifex, as it was called, declared war against all non-Christians throughout the world and directed King Alfonso of Portugal to

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  • Anne Newkirk Niven
    Anne Newkirk Niven says #
    Thanks for this great story; raising our kids in Point Arena we always made a point of noting this holiday as "Indigenous People's

Our bounty is inb2ap3_thumbnail_IMG_7387.jpg
creativity
friendship
community
the myriad small adventures
of everyday.
We tell of magic
and moonrise
and listening to the pulse
of the earth beneath our feet.


Ah, October. Fall has settled into the trees and air. As the sun was setting and the full moon was rising, my family stood together in the dim light on our back deck, lit a fire in a hollowed out pumpkin and offered handfuls of herbs into the flames as we celebrated our blessings, our harvests, and our bounty, as a family and as individuals. As we spoke aloud our blessings and our bounty, our words got deeper, broader, and more authentic. My twelve year old son stepped forward to say how thankful he is that he gets to live with his best friend, his fifteen year old brother, and they embraced over the flaming pumpkin. My fifteen year old son offered his thanks for a family that has “cool rituals like this” and my four year son offered his blessings for the “energy we feel together.” My seven year old daughter offered her gratitude for pandas and for toys.

The next week, we returned the seeds to the pumpkin and released it to the outdoors to grow next year.

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