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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Reintegration

Coming down from the mountain
I have seen the lofty glory
I will go again some day
But for now, I’m coming down.

–Meat Puppets

There is an ache in my heart right now, a longing for the people and experiences of Suntree Retreat.

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Forget-Me-Not: Sweet But With a Dark Side

Forget-me-not is a charming little plant with soft blue flowers that the Victorians regarded as a symbol of fidelity and love. It was given as a token of remembrance, a sweet request to not be forgotten.

I had never grown forget-me-not in my garden until last year when a little plant cropped up between the iris and daisies. With property surrounded by meadows and woods, wild flora and fauna turn up in my garden on a regular basis. I decided to let the little blue-flowered visitor stay. After all, it has been considered a lucky plant.

By early autumn, I began to change my opinion. One of the folk names for forget-me-not (Myosotis scorpioides) is scorpion grass, which is also reflected in its species name. Prior to blooming, the flower stalks are tightly curled resembling a scorpion tail. This should be a warning that it wields a metaphorical sting. Forget-me-not doesn’t ask sweetly to be remembered, it clings like a vengeful lover who refuses to be set aside.

During autumn cleanup, I discovered that forget-me-not had made itself at home in the peripheral gardens. It won’t let go; the tiny seeds attach to anything (garden gloves, pant legs, sweatshirt sleeves) and stick like Velcro. This spring, it has turned up everywhere. It will not let you forget it.

Magically, the ancient Egyptians used forget-me-not to aid in receiving visions during the month of Thoth (approximately September 11 to October 10) by placing a few leaves over their eyes. As mentioned, it was considered a lucky plant and in Germany it was used as a talisman for finding hidden treasure, especially if it was guarded by the fae. Forget-me-not was often used for protection from faery mischief; however, judging by the plant’s behavior, I think it is faery mischief.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

 Wedding Besom Jumping Broom  in your choice of Natural image 1

 

I have a sacred word to teach you.

At a Jewish wedding, when the groom (or whoever) stomps the glass, everyone shouts: Mazel tov!

At a pagan wedding, when the couple jumps the broom everyone shouts: Hurrahya!

Hoo-RYE-yuh, it's pronounced—rye like the grain—and better it be if you rrroll the R. It's an old Witch word, an exclamation of joy. It's one of that odd class of words called vocables, words that connote but do not denote. It doesn't really “mean” anything, but through such words we enter into that archaic, pre-verbal state of mind that characterizes animal calls, infant sounds, and cultic cries such as Euoi!

The rubrics of the Rites of Handfasting don't specify a call as people jump the broom—the broom that represents, inter alia, the threshold of the new life into which the couple are entering together—but Hurrahya! is what you shout as someones leaps a bonfire, so it makes a deal of sense for handfasting as well. Hey, what's good for the witch is good for the warlock.

As to where the word comes from: Reply hazy, try again later. This amateur linguist's guess would be that it's related to hurrah, another common vocable used by cowan and pagan alike. Hurrahya, though, is the Witches-only version.

In my role as wise old sage (i.e. bullshitter) I should probably be telling you that Hurrahya was originally some ancient god-name. (With that explosive hur- at the beginning, and the nice open -ya at the end, I'll leave it to you to guess Who.) Well, you can believe that if you want to. When, at the handfasting later today, I pass along just that story, I plan to be wearing a wry twist of the lips as I do so. Caveat credente: let the believer beware.

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Tips 'n' Tricks: Rings of Rejuvenation

Gemstones and crystals have transformative powers and magic that has been worked with since olden days. Bring birthstone blessings into your life by using these Rings of Rejuvenation.  

  • Sapphire has violet energy. Worn on the first Saturday of the month on the middle finger of the right hand two hours before sunset, the stone is said to be a curative for kidney ailments, epilepsy, tumors, and sciatica. 
  • Diamond, which contains rays of indigo light, is good for maintaining the health of the eyes and nose, managing asthma and laziness, and maintaining sobriety, especially if worn on the right pinkie on Friday during the waxing moon. 
  • Emerald has green light rays and can help with the heart, ulcers, cancer, asthma, and influenza. Wear emerald on the right pinkie on Wednesday  
  • Pearls radiate orange rays and operate as a curative if worn on Monday morning by the individual afflicted with insanity, diabetes, colic, or fever. 
  • Topaz has blue rays and helps with laryngitis, paralysis, hysteria, scarlet fever, and assorted glandular disorders if worn on the right ring finger on Thursday mornings.
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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs

I stood beneath
the eclipsing moon,
the sound of whippoorwills
a chorus
rising from damp trees.
Thin white clouds
scudded around fresh stars
and I recited
the Charge of the Goddess,
slowly and alone,
remembering as I always do
the feel of sand beneath my feet
and my baby’s head
against my heart
when I first memorized
these words,
“let your divine innermost self
be enfolded in the rapture
of the infinite.”
The sky that day was gray bowl
above the sea,
spitting rain onto my shoulders
as I turned in wide circles
across the sand,
letting the words
become a part of my soul,
sink into me,
until my bones remembered
them too.
Now, I stand,
hand on my heart
and say aloud:
“Goddess, we need a world
that does not hide you
and that does not hide from you.
Let me be a part
of creating this world.”
I feel her,
as I do,
both beneath my skin
and everywhere,
all at once
and I allow myself to be
enfolded for these
breaths in the rapture
of the infinite,
the full moon
becoming enclosed
in the shadow of the earth.

b2ap3_thumbnail_orange-ooak-muse-with-sunset.jpg

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Recent comment in this post - Show all comments
  • Jamie
    Jamie says #
    Molly, Thanks for sharing! Great stuff as always.

Posted by on in Culture Blogs

 My random thoughts...: Story about why dog lift their legs while peeing

Some Thoughts on the Use of Urine in Magic

 

In the dream, the ritual is about to begin. Four of us are standing at the circle's respective quarters, ready to begin our quarter-calls.

Instead of summoning, stirring, and waving a knife at, though, the first quarter-caller cocks a leg up, like a dog leaving a scent mark.

Yes! I think gleefully, hoping that my friend at the next quarter will do the same. He does, as do I in turn.

 

Later, waking, I ponder this curious dream, and the vehemence of my gleeful response. In part, I think, it comes from the fact that at heart I'm a trickster, son of a trickster, and—given the opportunity—will almost always play for the laugh. In the dream, the leg-cocking was transgressive, clearly not to plan, and I've long been one for play, rather than solemnity, in ritual.

Deeper than this, though, lurks an underlying sense of the primal, which the best ritual always manages to evoke. Nothing is older in magic than scent-marking, nothing.

We've been doing it since before we were human.

 

To draw a cheap and wholly unfair dichotomy, wizard magic is head-magic, warlock magic body-magic. To cite only one hoary piece of warlockry, when you buy (or build) a new house, the first thing that you do is to go around and pee on all five corners of the house.

(If you know what I mean by “all five corners,” you know how to think like a witch.)

 

If you want to become a werewolf, first you go to the woods and strip off. Then you piss in a circle around yourself.

Bet they never taught you that in Wicca 101.

I've never tried this myself, but I see the point. To shift your shape, you've got to reach down into the primal. The skin-strong—what the ancestors called the hide-stark—need to be able to live in their pure animal selves.

Besides, I doubt that most wizards would have the bladder capacity.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Jamie
    Jamie says #
    Mr. Posch, Thank you for neatly summarizing, as an occult practitioner who would know, the difference between wizards and warlock
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    I remember reading a newspaper article about a witch bottle found at a civil war site. Apparently some Pennsylvania soldiers had

Posted by on in Paths Blogs
What else is missing from Minoan art?

CW: animal sacrifice, human sacrifice

When I shared last week's post about what's missing in Minoan art on social media, I got an interesting response from a fellow Pagan writer, who guessed (before reading the post) that what was missing was war and violence.

There's something to that, but it's not a simple subject.

...
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