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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in witchs rose

Posted by on in Culture Blogs

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Surely thine hour has come, thy great wind blows,

Far-off, most secret, and inviolate Rose.

(William Butler Yeats, "The Secret Rose")


In order to understand what I'm about to tell you, you need to know that the Witches' Goddess is known among witches, somewhat cryptically, as “the Rose.”

(If you can't see why that would be, then what kind of a witch are you?)

Hence the phrase sub rosa, “under the rose,” meaning confidentially.

When someone tells you something “under the rose,” it's not to be shared with outsiders. When told this, by listening, you thereby accede, as if you had sworn an oath.

The Craft is hedged about with roses. (I mean here, of course, the original rose, the rose of five petals.) The pentagram, of course, is known as the “witch's rose.”

Some things are of the Rose, not meant for others' ears. You may be told “This is under the Rose.” In season, a rose in bloom may be held up silently, and laid upon the table. A rose may be drawn with the finger in the air, or over the lips. All these forms are binding.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The Secret Star

They say that in the old days there were many signs by which our people would recognize one another.

This is the story of one of them.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The Rose in Winter

It's the Eve of Russian Christmas. Perfumed with incense, the church is dark, lit only by candlelight.

I stand with the other worshipers, savoring the chewy Slavonic chant. For me, it is Midwinter's Eve all over again: we gather together in cavernous darkness, awaiting the Momentous.

After the service, we file forward. Wielding, with practiced deftness, a delicate little paintbrush, the priest anoints us, one by one.

As the bristles brush my brow, my nostrils fill with the ghostly fragrance of roses. In the heart of Midwinter, the voluptuous scent of Midsummer.

I think of Her who is called Rosa Mundi, Rose of the World, Mother of Witches.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Quest of the Rose

See that hedge of roses, now?

(Beautiful, isn't it: Rose Moon nearly upon us, and the flowers at their opening.)

They say that there's a goddess in there, sleeping.


Centuries she's slept, now. Maybe longer.

Why, you ask? Well, now.

Some say it was a curse. Perhaps.

Or maybe some inner call, deep within? The inner life of goddesses, who can know?

But sleeping her hundred-years' sleep she is, and waiting for one to wake her.

And maybe it's you that she waits for.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    Fierce beauty.
  • Erin Lale
    Erin Lale says #
    Sleeping Beauty, huh? Freya likes roses.

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
A Visit to the Castle of the Roses

This post in honor of the Rose Moon, now upon us.

In Old Craft lore, the Seat of the Lady is said to be the Castle of the Roses.

Robert Cochrane, father of the modern Old Craft movement, used to describe it as a castle on a hill on an island to the west. (It's where our dead go, they say.) He clearly saw it as a classic, high medieval castle: moat, drawbridge, curtain wall with four gates (it's also called the Castle of the Winds), a castle-keep with three towers, and Herself the Lady of the Castle enthroned within. It's called Castle of the Roses because the outer wall is girded with a thick hedge of rose-briars. The hedge is starred with white roses that turn red when one of Ours enters.

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