airwolf

~*~ Elder Airwolf LoP Ministry Founder/Owner~*~

Administrator | Last logged in at

Merry Meet Legionnaires~
I am sixth generation Native Blackfoot and Scottish Celt. My Grandmother was one of my mentors her being a shaman, and my other mentor was my Druid Celtic Aunt. I was raised pagan and my education started at the age
of seven and formally after my first moon lodge ritual at 12. I am also trained as a voodoo priestess
I have one son now coming into his native shaman training and 4 beautiful grandchildren.

The Raven's Call~by Elder Airwolf

THE RAVEN'S CALL

by

Elder Airwolf

 

 

 

I hear your call to me in the distance as your beckoning me to hear your message as it's becoming clear.

 

Your pacing and hopping about as you gather your thoughts,

the others gather in the distance as you prepare.

 

I'm evermore drawn to your energy as your on the edge of delivery,

but wait this takes more than just you...and audience is called for.

 

I'm waiting for you as you can see,

others look on in amazement,

how can this be.

 

I stand in plain sight familiar at my side,

we look to the roof tops for you to reappear.

 

Finally hopping to the peak your feathers shimmering

iridescent blackish-blue in the last of the Sun's kiss

the chatter begins.

 

Your caw once and another raven appears,

you caw twice then two more.

You caw yet again now there are six,

the screeching caw three more arrive.

 

You all now walk in a row strong by nine,

one by one in a straight line.

 

On the highest peak of the rooftop,

all nine in a row walk to the south,

then you caw, turn about and head to the east.

 

Fine feathered fellows persistence in sharing the news,

it comes from not one but all,

we will follow you.

 

We have waited patiently for you to arrive,

once more to the grove of trees in the woods,

so mote it be.

 

 

We are you and you are we,

now all together as it was meant to be.

 

Welcome home our sister,

for you have been greatly missed,

we are ready to work as you cast,

in the woods of blyss.

 

So spin your magick once again,

to heal and teach,

we are the ravens of the Morrighain,

of the Goddess Mother Hecate.

 

Welcome home!

 

 

All rights reserved

Copyright ©06212014

~Elder Airwolf~

 

 

Fairies and the summer solstice

June 21 is the summer solstice in the northern hemisphere, and is known as the most active day of the year for fairies. According to traditional European fairy lore, the veil between the mundane human world and Faerie thins on the summer solstice, allowing the worlds to mingle.

The summer solstice is also known as Midsummer, and the classic Shakespeare play “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” takes place at Midsummer. In the play a hobgoblin called Puck plays tricks on humans and the fairy queen at the behest of his master Oberon, the king of the fairies. The fairies and humans in the story are able to interact because it is the summer solstice.

On this enchanted fairy holiday, it is traditional in some cultures to leave gifts or offerings of food out for the fairies. The treats are given out of friendship, out of thanks for help received from the fairies, and as a way to placate the magical beings. Fairies are known for being unpredictable, and even vengeful, if displeased with humans. However, they can also be beneficent and generous with humans who please them, so a few nice gifts and treats to please them is a good idea.

Some lovely flowering plants, dried or fresh fruit, raw nuts, or honey make excellent gifts for the fairies. In some Scandinavian countries it’s traditional to place special cakes in trees for the fairies. It’s also a good idea to clean up the house and garden - the fairies like neatness.

Midsummer runs from June 21 through June 24 or 25, so there’s still plenty of time to arrange something nice for the fairies to enjoy, or to plan a Midsummer garden party. It’s lovely to invite friends to gather to sing songs, dance, recite fairy poems, tell fairy stories, and have a bonfire in the evening to celebrate the fairies.

So, take the time to remember the fairies during the summer solstice, and be on the lookout for signs that the fairies are about!

BLESSED LITHA'S EVE 2014 LEGIONNAIRES

A Midsummer Ritual 2014

I’ve always found Midsummer to work better as an idea than as a ritual. The longest day and shortest night almost lends its self more towards a simple celebration than an involved ritual. Indeed, many of my Summer Solstices have been spent at Pagan Gatherings that have lacked a specific Midsummer rite. This year I wanted to be sure and put together a traditional ritual and use it to express the parts of Midsummer that most tantalize my imagination: the Sun and the Fey.

Inspired by my Ancient Nature of Midsummerarticle last week I wanted to work a Solar Wheel into my solstice rite. It doesn’t show up in the form expressed in the article, but at least it’s there. The part about the Fey was a bit more problematic. I’m not what one would call a traditional believer in fairies, though I do think there are beings and entities that exist at the borders of our perception. In that sense I’m a believer in The Fey, but they aren’t an essential part of my practice. (I don’t think one must believe in the Fey to be a Pagan or Witch.)

I’m also hesitant to call genuinely sentient beings to watch parts of my circle. I call the gods because I have a relationship with them and honestly feel as if they want to be there. I’m not sure that the salamanders of the south are going to show up just because I ask one night a year. I included “Fey Quarter Calls” in this ritual just for those looking for (or with an interest in) such a thing, but that doesn’t mean I’m necessarily going to be using them myself. Instead, and this ended up being an idea first suggested by my wife, we are going to invite them to bless certain things for our ritual and then use those items in our rite. Hopefully we’ll get their magic that way, and then if they do want to show up they will be welcome to, but I’d never “demand” the presence of another sentient being. (I wrote this introduction before figuring out exactly how I was going to call the Fey, so satisfied with my writing I might now very well call them, he said smugly.)

I’ve always been intrigued by the idea of the Fey, and the pictures being used here to illustrate this ritual reflect how I want Midsummer to be in many ways. I’ll be outside the night of the solstice trying to catch a glimpse of whatever’s there. If the Fairy Folk are going to show themselves to me I have a feeling it will be on the longest day and shortest night of the year. Instead of calling the Fey to the ritual by type of being, I call them by element and association. In my mind I associate the classic fairy with East, salamanders with the South, undines the West, and earthy fey like brownies with North, but that’s just me. Instead of hoisting my rather classic associations on everyone else I went very general. I also made all of my calls haikus just for fun (and since they are short, they are pretty easy to write!).

The circle casting in this ritual is a little different than normal for me, but I like to experiment from time to time. Midsummer always put me in a good mood. It’s the height of Summer, it’s the blessings of the Lord and Lady . . . I love the Summer and cherish the memories it’s given me over the years. Happy Solstice!

Materials Needed:
Grape Vine
Sweet Spring Water (I’ll be adding a little bit of sugar to this)
A dedicated candle
Smudge Stick
Glass Beads
Sweets (gifts for the Fey)
Fire (either in a cauldron indoors or a fire pit)

Before the Ritual Starts
This ritual calls for the blessings of the Fairy Folk and calls for various items (water, candle, smudge, glass beads) to be blessed by them. To receive the blessings of the Fey we will be setting all of these items in our Fairy Garden, a little space in our backyard dedicated to the others who walk this world with us. You don’t have to dedicate a permanent spot in your house to the Fey, just a few gifts in a private spot in/on your yard/patio/deck/porch should do the trick. After leaving the water, candle, smudge, and beads outside for a night bring them back inside to use in the ritual. Be sure to leave some of the glass beads out for the Fey, they like shiny things.

Purification
Everyone prepares for ritual differently. In my circle we perform a ceremonial hand-washing. Some groups prefer to use incense, smudge, salted water, etc etc. I could share exactly what I do here but then I’d have to swear you to secrecy, and that sounds like too much work.

Opening Meditation/Chant
It’s important to get yourself in the right head space for ritual. Some groups like to use a guided meditation “your feet are the like the roots of a tree . . .” others chant and sing. It probably depends on how good the singing is in your particular group.

Statement of Intent
High Priestess: “We gather tonight to celebrate the longest day and shortest night. The Sun shines down upon us in its full crowning glory. It’s light, life giving and purifying. At the Summer Solstice we celebrate not just the Sun, but the fey and other unseen who share this world with us. This evening we seek the blessings of both as we observe the Summer Solstice. Now let your heart and be light and your spirit filled with joy as we revel in the joys of Midsummer!”

Casting the Circle
“Our circle of power is a meeting place of love and joy and truth and a shield against all that is wicked and evil. With flower petals of red I create this circle in the world of mortals. With flower petals of blue I open the entry way to the realm of spirit. With flower petals of yellow I open the doorway to the realms of the Mighty Ones. With flower petals of green I welcome those unseen who come in good faith. I now bless and consecrate thee in the names of the Lord and Lady. The circle is cast, so mote it be!”

(In a complete reversal of how I normally do things this ritual uses flower petals to cast the circle. The petals should be sprinkled around the circle while the circle caster also projects energy out of themselves.)

Calling the Fey*
High Priestess: “We now call to those seen and unseen, the Fey who would willingly join us in our rite.”

East
“Fair folk of the East
Keepers of breeze, wind, and air
You are welcome here!”

South
“Fair folk of the South
Keepers of flame and passion
You are welcome here!”

West
“Fair folk of the West
Keepers of rain and ocean
You are welcome here!”

North
“Fair folk of the North
Keepers of mountain and plane
You are welcome here!”

High Priest: “Honor to you good folk for being a part of our Midsummer Rite! Merry Meet!”

Calling the God
“We call to the Great God this night of longest day. Join us as the Sun, fiery Lord of the Heavens who blesses our land with the sunshine that makes our world grow! Join us as the Creator who joins with the Great Mother to bring forth new life! May your purifying light and fire bless us this night and drive away all that is negative in our lives. Be a part of our rites as you are a part of our lives! Hail and Welcome!”

The Charge of the God
There are many Charges of the God out there on the internet. Not surprisingly, my group uses the one I wrote.

Calling the Goddess
“We call to the Great Goddess this day of shortest night. Join us as the Moon, cool orb of the night-time sky who lights our way and adds to our magics! Join us as the Great Mother who brings forth new life from the eternal womb! It’s your touch that that makes the blossoms bloom and the crops ripen with grain! May that same touch reach us this night to drive away any sorrow and sadness that doesn’t contribute to our lives. Be a part of our rites this night as we celebrate the your gifts of love and summertime! Hail and Welcome!”

The Charge of the Goddess
There are many versions of the Charge of the Goddess, but only one that’s familiar to most everyone of the Wiccan persuasion. My circle uses Valiente’s version, with some minor changes.

The Solar Wheel & The Bonfire
High Priest: “The Sun has always been seen as a source of truth and justice. The first people to hear the call of the gods used to make all oaths towards the Sun and ask for his (or her) or blessing in keeping the promise true. From its perch in the sky the sun sees all things. For millennia upon end the Sun has been visualized as The Solar Wheel. Long after the New Religion seeped into every nook and cranny of the old Pagan World people continued to honor the Sun upon Midsummer in the form of the Solar Wheel.”

High Priestess: “Wheels were made and then lit on fire and hurled down mountains and hills. If the wheel made it to the end of its journey without falling down the harvest was guaranteed to be a good and strong one. The wheel falling was a bad omen, but as luck would have it, that happened only rarely. Tonight we won’t release a wheel down a hill, but we will make our own Sun Wheels and then light them on fire. We will put all that’s negative and destructive in our lives into our wheels and then light them on fire, releasing that negativity from our lives. Nothing positive and bright can live in the cleansing fires of Midsummer!”

(We are going to be using grape vine to make our wheels, and we will be making them small. You can make a Solar Wheel out of dried vine pretty easily. Bend the vines to form a tight circle would around two or three times and then tuck the ends into the back. Two short pieces of vine can then be used to make the cross in the middle, tucking the two pieces of vine into the circle. I write religion stuff if you need art instructions I’m probably not the one to help you. When everyone is finished making their wheel proceed with the ritual.)

High Priest: “Now that your Solar Wheel has been constructed, let us pour what is negative and holds us back inside of it. Push all of that ‘bad’ into it. Fill it up, and then fill it up some more. As you do so, know that the Sun will take all of it back and rid the world of that energy on Midsummer! When you feel as if you are ready come forward and throw your Wheel into our Cauldron of Sunshine and Midsummer Fire!”

(When I first began envisioning this ritual I imagined us burning these tiny wheels in a cast-iron cauldron on our altar. I’m guessing my wife won’t let me do that so we’ll be burning them in our mobile fire-pit outside. To do that I’ll add some flowery words like“Now follow me as if we venture out towards our Midsummer fire and cast our wheels out upon it!” and then open up our circle and march everyone outside. Once outside I might have everyone at the ritual say what they are casting out of themselves, our words create things and are magical in their own ways, before leading them back inside. If my neighborhood was a little more private I’d just do the whole ritual outside, but alas, we will be in our Temple Room like good EpiscoPagans. In order to speed up the ritual you could also make all the little solar crosses before the rite starts and then hand them out.)

The Blessings of the Fey
High Priestess: “We do not walk this world alone. The Earth is full of others, beings who think and live much as we do but exist just outside of our ordinary understanding. In olden days it was said that if one wished to visit the realms of the Fairy Folk, the Fey, all they had to do was walk around a Fairy Hill three times, stopping to knock the third time. That would open a door into their world, a space full of magic where time moves much differently than in our own reality.”

High Priest: “Tonight we don’t seek to visit the realm of the Fey, but we do seek their blessings. Midsummer provides an opportunity for us to acknowledge those who live besides us and thank them for sharing this world with us. It’s also a chance to ask for their blessings and perhaps a touch of their magic in our own lives.”

High Priestess: “We put these items into our Fairy Garden last night and asked the Fey to bless them. We also gave them gifts of sweets and honey as a gesture of thanks and gratitude. We hope that with the magic of the Fairy Folk that the items we use in this cleansing will keep you safe and trouble free as the sun begins to wane once more.”

High Priest: “For centuries people have blessed their crops and livestock with smoke. Lit torches were run through the field, the purifying heat and smoke ensuring the crops against blight, and the people against hunger. Tonight we cleanse ourselves with the sacred smoke, blessed by the Fey, to keep us safe from harm this Summer and Autumn. As the sage-smoke surrounds you feel it cleansing you, but also protecting you, forming a shield around you. As you breathe the smoke inside your lungs let its scent fill you up inside. Feel the magic of the others, feel the protective power of the smoke, and in your mind’s eye use this opportunity to connect with those Pagans and Witches who came before us.”

(Everyone in the circle is blessed and cleansed. The sage should be lit from a candle blessed in the Fairy Garden. In our circle I’ll be the High Priest doing the cleansing as my wife is sensitive to smoke.)

High Priestess: “Even while free from harm the fields and the folk cannot exist without water and earth. These glass beads were left to the Fey along with this sweet spring water. One by one I add the blessings of the Fairy Folk to our water. May their magics mix with those of Earth and Rain. (Glass beads are added to the water, perhaps mixed with the athame.) May the magic of the Fairy Folk upon this night of Midsummer bless our lives with enchantment and wonder and allow us to glimpse their world when the veils are thin and the time is right. So mote it be!”

(The enchanted water is then sprinkled upon everyone in the circle. At our ritual my wife will be doing the sprinkling.)

The Great Rite
High Priest: “Life is more than a gift, it is a promise. All that dies shall be reborn.”

High Priestess: “We now celebrate the most ancient of magics, the magic of joining.”

High Priest: “The athame is to the Lord.”

High Priestess: “As the cup is the Lady.”

Both: “United in life and abundance. Blessed Be!”

(Athame is plunged into the chalice.)

Blessing the Cakes & Ale
High Priest: “In the names of the Lord and Lady we bless this bread.”

(Touches athame to either the bread or the plate it is being served upon.)

High Priestess: “In the names of the Lord and Lady we bless this drink.”

(Touches athame to the top of the cup. The drink is then passed around first with the bread following. As the wine is passed the words “May you never thirst” are said upon receiving the chalice. When being passed the bread or cakes the wish of “May you never hunger” should be shared with those receiving the cakes.)

Goodbyes to the Lord & Lady
High Priest: “We thank the Great God for being with us this night. As you sink now beneath the trees and hills we thank you for your presence in our lives. As you set upon this enchanted night take away those things we burned in the sacred Midsummer fire. Our Solstice Celebration is near its end, but you walk with us both within and without the circle. Hail the God! Hail the Sun! Hail the Summer! Blessed Be.”

High Priestess: “We thank the Great Goddess for being with us for our Midsummer Rite. You are the Mother of us all, human and fey, and as your children we honor you on this the shortest of nights. May the blessings we have received tonight be a continual reminder of your love, care, and concern for all of us. Our Solstice Celebration is near its end, but you walk with us both within and without the circle. Hail the Lady! Hail the Moon! Hail the Summer! Blessed Be.”

Goodbye to the Fey
High Priestess: “We now wish farewell to those seen and unseen who have blessed our rites.”

North:
“From the North you came
Fey of Earth, soil and mountain
Thanks for your blessings.”

West
“From the West you came
Fey of Water, sea and spring
Thanks for your blessings.”

South
“From the South you came
Fey of Fire, stirrers of souls
Thanks for your blessings.”

East:
“From the East you came
Fey of Air, breeze and whisper
Thanks for your blessings.”

High Priest: “Honor and thanks to you Good Folk for being a part of our Midsummer Rite! Merry Part!”

Taking Down the Circle
“This circle has served as a meeting place for those with love and joy in their hearts and against all that is wicked and evil. I now pick up a green flower petal and say goodbye to those unseen who have visited us in good faith. I now pick up this flower petal of yellow and thereby close the doorway to the realms of the Mighty Ones. By picking up this petal of blue I seal the entryway from spirit. Finally I pick up this petal of red to bring me back from between the realms. All will now be as it once was, and what was once here has been dismissed in the names of the Lord and the Lady. So mote it be!”

Closing Statement 
High Priestess: “The time of waning is now at hand, the days grow shorter, but the Summer is just beginning. With the blessings of the Lord and Lady and those seen and unseen we leave this place with joy and full hearts. Merry meet, merry part, and merry meet again! And may the gods preserve The Craft!”

~FINS~

*When I do this ritual will I be calling the Fey as described here? Heck no, I’m not nearly brave enough to call sentient beings like the Fey to watch my circle. Sure, I’ll invite them, but I’ll be calling the Watchtowers like I normally do in ritual. One of the great things about the rituals I write is that it’s very easy to “cut and paste” the various elements that make up a rite.

 

Native American Culture and the Summer Solstice

Native American Culture and the Summer Solstice

Not much is understood about how the ancient Native American's celebrated the summer solstice. Several sites in the western United States appear to have been built to mark the summer solstice and the first day of the other seasons. There are monuments in the Big Horn mountains in Wyoming.
On a high butte called the Fajada Butte in Chaco Canyon in Colorado is another obvious place where sun worship was held with markers to highlight the day of the summer solstice. Because of these types of places being prominent in areas where the Native Americans resided, it seems apparent that the sun god and summer solstice were important parts of their culture.

People who are taken by the Native American beliefs and cultures tend to head to these places to celebrate the summer solstice each year. Some are Native Americans, but many are not. In some cases, due to shifts in the ground, the monuments no longer accurately depict the solstice in the way they were constructed to do. However, most are still close enough to serve as a place considered to be filled with mystical power.

In Zion Canyon in Sedona, Arizona is another place that crowds gather to participate in festival celebrations to commemorate the solstice. One of the few places east of the Mississippi River where similar celebrations are held each year is in Wisteria, Ohio. Today, many of these festivals attract many who participate in rituals that have little to do with Native American culture. However, some are mixed with ancient rituals that are thought to go back more than 1,000 years.

A number of the celebrations that center on the Native American culture are more of traditional feasts than a worship affair. They tend to be more about family and tribal fellowship than appeasing the sun god. Often they have modern approaches to old ideas. Since the solstice in many cultures involves the cycle of the moon at this time also, these activities are as likely to occur at night as at some point after sunrise. Many borrow from other pagan practices involving burning candles, incense, and other such rituals.

Some communities where there is a high interest in the Native American culture have created their own versions of the solstice festivals. These do not often draw huge crowds, but the numbers can be large enough to generate significant additional revenue for the businesses in the area. These festivals also serve to bring awareness to Native American beliefs and worship. Many vendors line up with wares that commemorate the event, or give interested visitors and opportunity to buy jewelry or clothing that simulate the Native American traditions.

There are a lot of people who assume that the celebrations that American Indians have during the summer solstice is merely an example of their religion. This isn't the case, though the belief persists.

It should be remembered that different tribes are different. However, for most, the celebration of the summer solstice is less a matter of worship as it is an appreciation of the seasons. To the Cherokees, and many other tribes, every season is celebrated and appreciated.

Dances and get togethers are common. It is a way to show our appreciation. In many places, picnics, family gatherings and meetings to give thanks to the land occur. Again, a person not of the culture should not mistake this to mean that we are worshiping the sun. This is a common misconception. We are appreciating the summer. It is really no more difficult to understand than that. Likewise, we celebrate the winter solstice. The seasons are a cycle...there is no beginning and no end, and without one season, there cannot be the other.

Summer is considered to be the time of maximum activity. We are beginning to reap those things that occurred in the spring, and to start preparations for those things we will reap in the fall. It is a time to put things away for the cold darkness when all rests - the winter.

Understanding this, a person can understand that the Cherokees have a rich tradition of beautiful celebrations to honor Mother Earth in the summertime. Wonderful dancers use their dances to tell old tales, to give hopes for the coming seasons, and to form and reaffirm friendships. Songs are sung that sing praise to the Grandfather, and to the Earth. Good food is eaten in plenty and many journeys are taken at this time. Colorful clothing is worn to show the many colors of summer and the love of all that is natural.

Summer solstice is a time of celebration of life itself.

~Elder Airwolf~

Blessed Litha Summer Solstice Legionnaires~

I will not be in till late afternoon tomorrow so here is a Litha Solstice Blessing~

Glory of the Day-Star, hail!
Lifter of the Light, Burnisher of the Sky.
Gifts of love to earth are bringing,
Summer’s shimmer, dew’s delight.
Dancing be the heart within us,
Open be our souls to bliss,
Courage vanquish every shadow,
Greet Midsummer with a kiss.
Caitlín Matthews 
Celtic Devotional: Daily Prayers and Blessings

Happy Litha (Summer Solstice) to those of us in the northern hemisphere, and Happy Yule (Winter Solstice) to our friends below the equator! On this day (above the equator) the Sun, giver of life, reaches its zenith in the sky. Today, the Shadow is smallest, the bright Sun illuminates all! From this day forward, She diminishes, the days grow shorter, and the harvest season beckons.

The word solstice is Latin, meaning ‘sun standing still.’ This is because twice a year, the Sun appears to rise and set in exactly the same place. Throughout the world, the ancients were tuned to this event: it is an unmistakable point from which the rest of the yearly calendar may be accurately reckoned.

This date has had spiritual significance for thousands of years as humans have celebrated the life-giving powers of the Sun. The Celts celebrated with bonfires, and then the Christians attempted to replace Litha with the feast of John the Baptist. It is also the festival of Li, the Chinese Goddess of light. It is still a huge holiday in Scandinavia, Latvia, and Estonia (where it is second only to Christmas).

Solstice rites are associated with diverse cultures and sites the world over, including Stonehenge in England, Casa Rinconada at Chaco Canyon, New Mexico, Carrowkeel cairn in Ireland, the Big Horn Medicine Wheel in Wyoming, the Caracol Tower in Mexico, and the Pyramid of Khufu at Giza in Egypt.

The Summer Solstice is called Midsummer or Litha in some medieval and Craft traditions; and Alban Hefin or Alban Heruin in other Celtic and Druidic traditions. In the mythical cycle, this is the end of the reign of the Oak King, and the beginning of the Holly King’s rule.

Today is the ending of the waxing year and the beginning of the waning year, in preparation for the harvest to come. Midsummer is when all that lives radiates with the Sun’s warming rays. This is a fiery celebration of fertility, not only for humans, but also for crops, animals and all beings.

Some Witches consider the Goddess to be heavy now with pregnancy from Her mating at Beltane; others see that She is now in Her great nurturing and Mothering splendor. In all cases, we honor Her. The God is also celebrated, as the Sun is at its peak in the sky and we celebrate Him as the good Father, a giver of light and life – Honor to Him, as well!

Litha is a time of great magical power. As I described yesterday, herbs and other natural items used in magic are especially charged with powerful life-giving properties at this time. And all forms of Sun magic are going to be amplified. Especially effective are spells for love, healing, and prosperity.

This is also a very good time to perform blessings and protection spells for your pets and home. Hanging boughs of fennel and honeysuckle bring sweetness and protection. Midsummer’s Day is a traditional time to gather herbs from the magical garden or from the wild (in a mindful, responsible manner only – never wild harvest a plant that is threatened or stressed) to use in potions, dream pillows, poppets, and other forms of spellcraft.

As you gather your Green Allies on Midsummer’s Day, you might chant this, thrice before and thrice after:

Herbs of magick, herbs of power,
Root and bark, leaf and flower,
Work for me when charms are spoken,
Potions brewed and curses broken!

May the Great Awakening now begin! May the old shadow spells of fear and powerlessness now melt away like mist that dissolves under the bright beams of the Solstice Sun.

May all the children of Earth now rise up, and re-dedicate to the urgent healing and empowerment we need, for one another, and especially for our holy Mother Earth.

In the ways of our ancestors, we honor the Turning.

Blessings this day, to you and to all Beings!

~Elder Airwolf~

HERBOLOGY 101 WEEK 11

IF YOU ARE NOT REGISTERED TO THIS CLASS DO NOT POST HERE~THANK YOU~

HERBOLOGY 101

WEEK 11

STUDENT COPY

 

 

 

Week 11 - Reading and Test assignment - 


 

YBYHG - Pg. 88 - 97, 145 - 153

EMOH - Pg. 240,242,250,251,254,261,262







1)  What other perfumed ingredients can you add to your potpourri ?







2)   What other key ingredients are in potpourri ?

 



 





3)   What gives you long-lasting scent in potpourri ?









4)  What are Fixatives in a potpourri ?








5)   What are the basic guidelines in creating a mixture of potpourri ?








6)   When making a herb pillows,what fabric is best used ?








7)  When designing a herbal bouquet,what supplies the dominant design element ?









8)   How is a pest repellent Pet Dip made ?









9)   What are the magickal powers of the following herbs ?

 A - Woodruff
 B - Thyme
 C - Wormwood









10)  The Folk Name " Herb of the Cross " belongs to which of the following herbs ?

         A - Violet
         B - Thyme
         C - Valerian
         D - Wormwood
         E - Tarragon
         F - Vervain
         G - Sweet woodruff
         H - Tansy











11)  When mixing violets and lavender,creates what magickal uses ?










12)  What are the magickal powers for the following herbs ?

    A - Tansy

    B - Valerian

    C - Yarrow

 


 







13)  Which herb belongs to the following elements and planets ?

    A - Earth / Venus

    B - Fire  /  Mars

 

 







14)  What is the flavor of Tansy ?



 





15)   Can you use Tansy in cooking ?



 






16)  When do you harvest Vervain ?



 






17)  Which part of Vervain is harvested ?


 







18)  What are the uses of Sweet Woodruff ?



 







19)  Is Yarrow edible ?



 







20)  Adding Tarragon to vinegar,creates what flavor in the vinegar ?

 

 

 

 

 

Copyright ©01222012

Legion of Pagans Spiritual Ministry

Institution of Magick

Elder Airwolf~Founder/Owner

 

 

BLYSSFUL FREYA'S DAY PAGANS & SOLSTICE EVE

Everything you need to know: June solstice 2014

It’s that beautiful time of year again in the N. Hemisphere, when the June solstice – your signal to celebrate summer – is nearly upon us.

That beautiful time of year is here again in the Northern Hemisphere, when the June solstice – your signal to celebrate summer – is nearly upon us. The 2014 June happens at 10:51Universal Time on June 21, which for us in the central United States is around sunrise June 21. For us in the Northern Hemisphere, this solstice marks the longest day of the year. Early dawns. Long days. Late sunsets. Short nights. The sun at its height each day, as it crosses the sky. Meanwhile, south of the equator, winter begins.

What is a solstice? Ancient cultures knew that the sun’s path across the sky, the length of daylight, and the location of the sunrise and sunset all shifted in a regular way throughout the year.

They built monuments, such as Stonehenge, to follow the sun’s yearly progress.

Today, we know that the solstice is an astronomical event, caused by Earth’s tilt on its axis and its motion in orbit around the sun.

Because Earth doesn’t orbit upright. Instead, our world is tilted on its axis by 23-and-a-half degrees, Earth’s Northern and Southern Hemispheres trade places in receiving the sun’s light and warmth most directly.

At the June solstice, Earth is positioned in its orbit so that our world’s North Pole is leaning most toward the sun. As seen from Earth, the sun is directly overhead at noon 23 1/2 degrees north of the equator, at an imaginary line encircling the globe known as the Tropic of Cancer – named after the constellation Cancer the Crab. This is as far north as the sun ever gets.

All locations north of the equator have days longer than 12 hours at the June solstice. Meanwhile, all locations south of the equator have days shorter than 12 hours

When is the solstice where I live? It comes on June 21, 2014, 10:51 Universal Time (5:51 a.m. CDT in the United States). That means that if you live in the western U.S., the exact time of this solstice happens before sunrise.

See on the globe of Earth how it’s sunrise in North America and near sunset at the Asian Pacific Coast at the instant of this solstice? It’s high noon over Africa, with the sun at zenith – or straight overhead – near the border of Lybia and Chad.

A solstice happens at the same instant for all of us, everywhere on Earth. To find the time of the solstice in your location, you have to translate to your time zone.

Here’s an example of how to do that. In the central United States, for those of us using Central Daylight Time, we subtract five hours from Universal Time. That’s how we get 5:51 a.m. Central Daylight Time as the time of the 2014 June solstice (10:51 UT minus 5 equals 5:51 a.m.).

Want to know the time in your location? Check out EarthSky’s article How do I translate Universal Time into my time? And just remember: you’re translating from 10:51 Universal Time, June 21.

Where should I look to see signs of the solstice in nature? Everywhere. For all of Earth’s creatures, nothing is so fundamental as the length of the day. After all, the sun is the ultimate source of almost all light and warmth on Earth’s surface.

If you live in the Northern Hemisphere, you might notice the early dawns and late sunsets, and the high arc of the sun across the sky each day. You might see how high the sun appears in the sky at local noon. And be sure to look at your noontime shadow. Around the time of the solstice, it’s your shortest noontime shadow of the year. For more specifics on what to see at the 2013 June solstice, click here.

If you’re a person who’s tuned in to the out-of-doors, you know the peaceful, comforting feeling that accompanies these signs and signals of the year’s longest day.

Is the solstice the first day of summer? No world body has designated an official day to start each new season, and different schools of thought or traditions define the seasons in different ways.

In meteorology, for example, summer begins on June 1. And every school child knows that summer starts when the last school bell of the year rings.

Yet today is perhaps the most widely recognized day upon which summer begins in the Northern Hemisphere and upon which winter begins on the southern half of Earth’s globe. There’s nothing official about it, but it’s such a long-held tradition that we all recognize it to be so.

Why celebrate the solstice? Cultures universally have had markers, holidays, and alignments – all related to the solstice.

It has been universal among humans to treasure this time of warmth and light.

For us in the modern world, the solstice is a time to recall the reverence and understanding that early people had for the sky. Some 5,000 years ago, people placed huge stones in a circle on a broad plain in what’s now England and aligned them with the June solstice sunrise.

We may never comprehend the full significance of Stonehenge. But we do know that knowledge of this sort wasn’t isolated to just one part of the world. Around the same time Stonehenge was being constructed in England, two great pyramids and then the Sphinx were built on Egyptian sands. If you stood at the Sphinx on the summer solstice and gazed toward the two pyramids, you’d see the sun set exactly between them.

Image Credit: Flickr user Ludwig Simbajon

How does it end up hotter later in the summer, if June has the longest day? People often ask:

If the June solstice brings the longest day, why do we experience the hottest weather in late July and August?

This effect is called “the lag of the seasons.” It’s the same reason it’s hotter in mid-afternoon than at noontime. Earth just takes a while to warm up after a long winter. Even in June, ice and snow still blanket the ground in some places. The sun has to melt the ice – and warm the oceans – and then we feel the most sweltering summer heat.

Ice and snow have been melting since spring began. Meltwater and rainwater have been percolating down through snow on tops of glaciers.

But the runoff from glaciers isn’t as great now as it’ll be in another month, even though sunlight is striking the northern hemisphere most directly around now.

So wait another month for the hottest weather. It’ll come when the days are already beginning to shorten again, as Earth continues to move in orbit around the sun, bringing us closer to another winter.

And so the cycle continues.

Bottom line: The 2014 June or summer solstice takes place on June 21, 2014 at 10:51 Universal Time (5:51 a.m. CDT). This solstice – which marks the beginning of summer in the Northern Hemisphere – marks the sun’s most northerly point in Earth’s sky. It’s an event celebrated by people throughout the ages.

http://www.archaeoastronomy.com/2014.html

Solitary Midsummer/Litha-Summer Solstice Ritual


Items needed:
One tall white God candle
One tall red Goddess candle
Mistletoe (should be placed on the altar in a place of honor)
Holly (should be placed on the altar, but just out of sight)
Sandalwood incense
cauldron
cup of water
bowl of salt
4 white corner candles
God's Eye
One large bowl of water
10 tea lights, unlit
Triple Goddess candles (one white, one red & one black)
Triple God candles (one green, one yellow & one gold)
Faerie Dust
Altar decorations: roses, lillies and daisies (optional)
(If you have a pet or familiar, you may give him/her a special Midsummer Blessing or perform a Protection Spell in this ritual)
_________________________________________________________
(Cast the circle and call the corners in your usual manner then light the incense. Invoke God & Goddess)
INVOCATION OF THE GOD: (while lighting the tall WHITE candle) -
"I now do call upon the eternal God in the ancient way - as gentle Father and loving consort to the
 Lady. Send Thy spirit forth so that I,  your child, may feel your light within. As it is willed, so mote
 it be!"
INVOCATION OF THE GODDESS: (while lighting the tall RED candle) -
"I now do call upon the eternal Goddess in the ancient way - as Earth Mother and omnipresent consort to the Lord. Send Thy spirit forth so that I, your child, may feel your life within me. As it
is willed, so mote it be!"

"Blessed be this season of Midsummer,
 The Young Sun rides at his peak in the skies as the Goddess gives birth to the Summer Solstice.
 Today I celebrate the light, for tomorrow that light will wane -
 Today I acknowledge the end of the waxing year and the beginning of the waning time."

(Take your athame or wand from the altar and raise it in front of you pointing upward while saying:

"Farewell to the waxing year,
 Season of fertility and growth
 Farewell to the season of Spring
 and the time of planting -
 Blessed be the Oak King!"

(Make the sign of the banishing pentagram with athame or wand and say:

"Welcome to the waning year,
 Season of harvest and wisdom
 Welcome to the bounty of autumn -
 Blessed be the Holly King!"

(Make the sign of the invoking pentagram with athame or wand. Place it back on the altar and switch the mistletoe with the holly. The holly is the symbol of the Holly King who now reigns over the waning year).

Light the Triple Goddess candles:

While lighting the WHITE candle say -
"Blessed be the Maiden, innocent and fresh."

While lighting the RED candle say -
"Blessed be the Mother, fertile and loving."

While lighting the BLACK candle, say -
"Blessed be the Crone, powerful and wise."

Now, light the Triple God candles:

While lighting the GREEN candle say -
"Blessed be the Lord, gentle and kind."

While lighting the YELLOW candle say -
"Blessed be the Father, protective and warm."

While lighting the GOLD candle say -
"Blessed be the King, forever reborn -
 Behold the Lord and Lady are One!"

(Pour the bowl of salt into the cup of water then hold it upward with both hands and say ) -
"O Blessed Lady, fill this vessel with your holy presence that I might rededicate myself to you. Great Mother of the Earth from whom all life was born and born again, I stand before you today to acknowledge you as the giver of life."

(Anoint yourself with the salted water - with your fingertips, anoint your feet, heart then finally your head.  Repeat the following incantation) -

"Blessed Lady, innocent virgin, wise Crone and Great Mother, I present myself to you as your child, (CRAFT NAME), and ask that you accept my dedication to you. So mote it be."

(By the New Stone Age, about 8,000 years ago, stone circles like Stonehenge were used to mark the position of the sun and the Midsummer/Summer Solstice. The sun would rise over a heel stone and cast a long, phallic shadow into the heart of the circle, consummating the marriage of Heaven and Earth. Other circles mark the equinoxes and the cross-quarter festivals we know as Imbolg, Lughnasdh, Beltane and Samhain.)

"Today, I also wish to honor the Faeries of the Woodlands -
 Faeries, Sprites and Nymphs, I bid you come join me in celebration of love and life!"

Light the tea lights and place in the large bowl of water  (set outside after ritual if performed indoors). Now, take a pinch of the Faerie Dust - place in cauldron and burn. If you are incorporating a Pet Blessing or Protection Spell, now is the time to do so.


"I am a child of deity,
 I am part of the creative life force which moves the Universe,
 I am part of all that is -
Though we are apart, we are ever together
For we are one in the spirit of our Goddess and our God.
 Merry Meet, merry part and merry meet again - 
 Blessed be!"

(Thank the deities, close ritual and open the circle - remembering to give back to the Earth afterwards).

Blessings,

~Elder Airwolf~


 

 

A Witches Ethics

I am putting this out for those of you that have a difficult time understanding the path of a witch and for those on the path of the witch trying to understand our ethics. You will read many forms and re-written many time but they all deliver the same message of accountability. What disturbs me more than those that do not follow the path is the one's that do and are angry and aggressive to others. Personally I find deep distaste to those on the path lashing out to others with vindictive vengeance because another has an issue with an attitude. Regardless, how you react to the criticism shows me if you are true to the path and the code of ethics. We Witches can rise above the pettiness of others it you indeed follow the true path.
True witches live by example. There are many different types of witches and pagans, and many work their magick and practice their craft with love, compassion and understanding, and aim to live with integrity, courage, strength and self-mastery. We don’t preach or try to convert people, we simply help others develop respect for our path by living it well, with strength, beauty, laughter and dignity.
Always feel strong and able to be who you are – you do not need to twist and turn in order to fit in. You are who you are. Witches can assist you in expressing the pure essence of your unique and divine true self.
When you create the workings suggested here, you will begin to activate your innate energetic white magic, and as you move forward through this series of magical tasks you will integrate these revived skills into your new self. Keep a journal – your Book of Shadows and Light – about what you do and what happens when you do it. Record your feelings, your thoughts, and any ideas that come to your mind.
White magical practitioners care for the planet and its people. They are also aware of their surroundings at all times. It doesn't matter where you live either – witchcrafting can be undertaken in the biggest city or the most remote country 
hideaway. Connect to the place you live and learn its secrets.
Witches engage in responsible white magical work to integrate our energy with that of the earth and the universe. We explore our magical selves and respect the privacy and wishes of others at all times – we never interfere with another’s free will. When thinking of how you are expressing yourself magically and thus energetically, always come from the position of what would be best for all concerned, for the highest good of all.
Consider times in your life when you may have crossed a personal boundary. Ponder how you can respect others yet still express yourself in powerful, sacred ways. Could you have done anything differently? How did the other person feel? What would you wish others to do for you?
We honor men and women, at birth, as children, as young adults, as mothers and fathers and as wise ones and crones. We understand and honor every path of life, knowing that each step of our journey is a unique lesson.
Connect with an age group you rarely have contact with. Ask them about their lives and listen to what they have to say. Consider their experience and see the world through their eyes. What can they teach you?
Magickal practitioners following a healthy path love the natural world. We do not claim superiority over any other being: we see nature as a deity giving birth to beings: two-leggeds, four-leggeds, flying ones, and the ones who live within the earth and under the waters of her oceans and waterways. We are custodians and have a responsibility to respect, conserve and revere nature. We are brothers and sisters, and all life is sacred.
Making your magick practical: make a donation to a foundation whose work you respect and admire. Focus your attention and walk gently on this earth. Think about what you contribute to all for that balance.

BLYSSFUL MOON'S DAY PAGANS!


Blyssful Moons Day Pagans!

My days are a bit busy so doing a one daily post for the next few weeks. Please be patient and my staff will be looking over the sites for me...

Magical and Medicinal: Frankincense and Myrrh
by GENTLE WORLD on DECEMBER 20, 2011

No matter your faith or form of seasonal celebration, you’ve most likely noticed frankincense and myrrh resins, incense and essential oils start to pop up this time of year. Many first heard of these resins through the story of the Three Wise Men (Magi) and their gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh at Jesus’s birth; thus the connection to Christmas time.

While it may be easy to understand gold being a precious gift, in truth, frankincense and myrrh’s value far outweighs that of gold and extends far beyond biblical lore. These plants are healing on an emotional, physical and spiritual level and more than simply symbols of the season.

“Amber and myrrh, benzoin and musk condense
To transports of the spirit and the sense!”

– Allen Tate

Frankincense and myrrh are from the same plant family (Burseraceae) and grow as small shrub-like trees in dry climates; such as India, Oman, Ethiopia, Somalia, Yemen and Saudi Arabia. The resin of both plants has been used medicinally and for spiritual practices for over 5,000 years, and with good reason.

Myrrh (Commiphora myrrha) is extracted from the Commiphora Mukul tree and has a natural medicinal aroma. It is now commonly found in many skin creams, toothpaste and other cosmetic products, but this is only the beginning of its beneficial uses.

Health Benefits: Anti-septic, anti-fungal and anti-inflammatory, anti-depressant, anti-microbial and anti-viral, astringent, expectorant, stimulant, carminative, stomachic, anti catarrhal, diaphoretic, vulnerary, anti-spasmodic, immune booster, improves circulation, body tonic.

Uses:

works as a sedative, for spiritual opening, stimulating thought
heals wounds (essentially those of a ‘weeping’ nature), protects against infection and promotes healing
skin diseases (eczema, ringworm, etc.)
soothes cracked and chapped skin, fades scars and other spots
used during and before meditation to align energy centers and encourage healing
used in gum and mouth (ulcer) preparations
stimulates uterine health and helps to normalize menstruation, relieves contractions or spasms (cramps, aches etc.)
relieves gas and diarrhea, improves stomach health, treats pyorrhea
strengthens and activates the immune system, prevents/helps microbial infection (fever, food poisoning, cough, cold, mumps, measles, chicken poxs etc.)
strengthens the gums’ hold on teeth (contracts skin), firms the scalp’s grip on hair roots
protects against coughs and colds (viral infections), provides relief from mucus and phlegm, eases congestion, breathing trouble, etc.
works as a fungicide
stimulates blood circulation, digestion and nerves, increases sweat to purify body
And more!
Words of Caution: Myrrh oil can have toxic effects if used in excess. It should be avoided during pregnancy due to its stimulating nature.

“The words which express our faith and piety are not definite; yet they are significant and fragrant like frankincense to superior natures.”

– Henry David Thoreau

As soon as you smell the warm, rich, sweet-woody scent of frankincense, it is easy to understand how special this plant truly is. Both as a resin or essential oil frankincense is opening and relaxing for both the body and mind.

Health benefits: Anti-septic, disinfectant, astringent, carminative, cicatrisant, cytophylactic, digestive, diuretic, emenagogue, expectorant, sedative, tonic, vulnerary.

Uses:

acts as a sedative (wonderful for insomnia), awakens insight, soothes anxiety, anger and stress
tones and lifts skin, heals and protects skin (against boils, wounds, acne and other skin maladies), fades and heals scars
relieves pain associated with rheumatism, arthritis, etc., soothes inflammation
eliminates germs (either by burning resin or applying oil topically)
strengthens gums and hair roots, and contracts muscles, intestines and blood vessels (by firming and toning)
improves digestion and alleviates gas, abnormal sweating, uneasiness, and indigestion
promotes regeneration of healthy cells and keeps existing cells and tissues health
promotes urination to purify the body and reduce bloating
helps obstructed and delayed menstruation and delays menopause, helps PMS symptoms (pain in the abdominal region, nausea, headache, fatigue, etc.), regulates production of estrogen
relieves cough and phlegm, bronchitis, and congestion
relieves body pain, headache, toothache and rise in body temperature (fever) associated with sickness
tones up all the systems operating in the body: respiratory, digestive, nervous and excretory systems
strengthens absorption of nutrients in the body
And more!
Words of Caution: No known adverse side effects are known. It should not be used during pregnancy, because of its emenagogue and astringent qualities.

Using these beautiful resins and oils is a wonderful way to heal your body and soothe a busy mind in any season. Enjoy!

Fair use copyright Law

The Legion of Pagans Spiritual Ministry claims no rights to this article, artwork, or any on our page. If this work belongs to you and you would like for us to remove it, please contact us and we will certainly do so. Being a non-profit educational site, we operate under the Fair Use rule of the US Copyright Law - please refer to the page information for full details. Blessings! 

~Elder Airwolf~
[Photo: Blyssful Moons Day Pagans! My days are a bit busy so doing a one daily post for the next few weeks. Please be patient and my staff will be looking over the sites for me... Magical and Medicinal: Frankincense and Myrrh by GENTLE WORLD on DECEMBER 20, 2011 No matter your faith or form of seasonal celebration, you’ve most likely noticed frankincense and myrrh resins, incense and essential oils start to pop up this time of year. Many first heard of these resins through the story of the Three Wise Men (Magi) and their gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh at Jesus’s birth; thus the connection to Christmas time. While it may be easy to understand gold being a precious gift, in truth, frankincense and myrrh’s value far outweighs that of gold and extends far beyond biblical lore. These plants are healing on an emotional, physical and spiritual level and more than simply symbols of the season. “Amber and myrrh, benzoin and musk condense To transports of the spirit and the sense!” – Allen Tate Frankincense and myrrh are from the same plant family (Burseraceae) and grow as small shrub-like trees in dry climates; such as India, Oman, Ethiopia, Somalia, Yemen and Saudi Arabia. The resin of both plants has been used medicinally and for spiritual practices for over 5,000 years, and with good reason. Myrrh (Commiphora myrrha) is extracted from the Commiphora Mukul tree and has a natural medicinal aroma. It is now commonly found in many skin creams, toothpaste and other cosmetic products, but this is only the beginning of its beneficial uses. Health Benefits: Anti-septic, anti-fungal and anti-inflammatory, anti-depressant, anti-microbial and anti-viral, astringent, expectorant, stimulant, carminative, stomachic, anti catarrhal, diaphoretic, vulnerary, anti-spasmodic, immune booster, improves circulation, body tonic. Uses: works as a sedative, for spiritual opening, stimulating thought heals wounds (essentially those of a ‘weeping’ nature), protects against infection and promotes healing skin diseases (eczema, ringworm, etc.) soothes cracked and chapped skin, fades scars and other spots used during and before meditation to align energy centers and encourage healing used in gum and mouth (ulcer) preparations stimulates uterine health and helps to normalize menstruation, relieves contractions or spasms (cramps, aches etc.) relieves gas and diarrhea, improves stomach health, treats pyorrhea strengthens and activates the immune system, prevents/helps microbial infection (fever, food poisoning, cough, cold, mumps, measles, chicken poxs etc.) strengthens the gums’ hold on teeth (contracts skin), firms the scalp’s grip on hair roots protects against coughs and colds (viral infections), provides relief from mucus and phlegm, eases congestion, breathing trouble, etc. works as a fungicide stimulates blood circulation, digestion and nerves, increases sweat to purify body And more! Words of Caution: Myrrh oil can have toxic effects if used in excess. It should be avoided during pregnancy due to its stimulating nature. “The words which express our faith and piety are not definite; yet they are significant and fragrant like frankincense to superior natures.” – Henry David Thoreau As soon as you smell the warm, rich, sweet-woody scent of frankincense, it is easy to understand how special this plant truly is. Both as a resin or essential oil frankincense is opening and relaxing for both the body and mind. Health benefits: Anti-septic, disinfectant, astringent, carminative, cicatrisant, cytophylactic, digestive, diuretic, emenagogue, expectorant, sedative, tonic, vulnerary. Uses: acts as a sedative (wonderful for insomnia), awakens insight, soothes anxiety, anger and stress tones and lifts skin, heals and protects skin (against boils, wounds, acne and other skin maladies), fades and heals scars relieves pain associated with rheumatism, arthritis, etc., soothes inflammation eliminates germs (either by burning resin or applying oil topically) strengthens gums and hair roots, and contracts muscles, intestines and blood vessels (by firming and toning) improves digestion and alleviates gas, abnormal sweating, uneasiness, and indigestion promotes regeneration of healthy cells and keeps existing cells and tissues health promotes urination to purify the body and reduce bloating helps obstructed and delayed menstruation and delays menopause, helps PMS symptoms (pain in the abdominal region, nausea, headache, fatigue, etc.), regulates production of estrogen relieves cough and phlegm, bronchitis, and congestion relieves body pain, headache, toothache and rise in body temperature (fever) associated with sickness tones up all the systems operating in the body: respiratory, digestive, nervous and excretory systems strengthens absorption of nutrients in the body And more! Words of Caution: No known adverse side effects are known. It should not be used during pregnancy, because of its emenagogue and astringent qualities. Using these beautiful resins and oils is a wonderful way to heal your body and soothe a busy mind in any season. Enjoy! Fair use copyright Law The Legion of Pagans Spiritual Ministry claims no rights to this article, artwork, or any on our page. If this work belongs to you and you would like for us to remove it, please contact us and we will certainly do so. Being a non-profit educational site, we operate under the Fair Use rule of the US Copyright Law - please refer to the page information for full details. Blessings!

~Elder Airwolf~
 

She Lives In My Heart: Sharing the Path of the Goddess with My Daughter


By: Jhenah Telyndru
 First published in The Beltane Papers, Issue 41 Fall 2007
 
“Like this, momma?”
“Just like that, dear one.”  My three-year-old daughter was hunched down over the fuzzy tufts of a dandelion gone to seed, asking permission to pick it in hushed and respectful tones. After waiting a moment to receive her reply, Ariana looked up at me, beaming, and excitedly announced, “She said yes, momma!”
I nodded at her, and then, carefully, with the focused intent that comes so naturally to young children, she picked the flower and clutched it excitedly to her chest, scattering some of the fluff in her enthusiasm. “What are you going to do with it now, bunny?” I asked.
“I’m going to send kisses to the Goddess!” She closed her eyes for a moment, puckered her rosebud lips and brushed them against the downy head of the dandelion. Then, with glee, she blew the seeds free and they took to the air around her as she giggled with delight. Living in an urban area as we do, I take pains to teach her about the natural world and it’s cycles. As subtle as the flowers that grow between the cracks in the pavement that send kisses to the Goddess, to the big beautiful moon that follows us home at night, making sure that we arrive safely, sharing the ways of the Goddess with my now-four year old daughter has brought me immeasurable joy.
As a priestess with many years dedication to the work of the Lady, I undertook my pregnancy as consciously as possible, connecting with the energies of the Great Mother and asking her blessing upon the miracle growing in my womb. When Ariana Starling was born by emergency c-section the day before the September 11th attacks, my world narrowed to focus on this tiny child, born into a world of uncertainty and facing struggles of her own. She spent nine days in the Neonatal ICU, connected to tubes and machinery that dwarfed her new body, as she struggled to gain strength. Although my hometown had been attacked, I could barely process all that was going on in light of my breaking heart, as I filled her tiny form with all the reiki I could muster in my own weakened state. There is no pain like that of leaving the hospital without your child after having given birth, and though I grieved, I knew that there were women who did not have the promise that their child would soon be whole and home. I prayed for guidance and comfort and healing, and in the end was granted my fondest desire – my dearest daughter came home to us, whole and healthy.
In the four years since then and now, there isn’t a day that goes by that I do not thank the Goddess for my daughter – truly my life’s greatest blessing. I consider it a deep honor and an awesome responsibility to guide this shining soul down her life’s journey of growth and experience until such time as she has claimed her full sovereignty as a woman, and with wings strong and eager to fly, she leaps eagerly from the security of the nest, ready to ride the currents of her own choosing. It is my hope that when that day comes, she will bring with her a solid moral foundation and a sense of herself that is so strong and centered, she will be able to ride out any storm and attain any height she seeks to reach.
In her life-changing book, Circle of Stones: Woman’s Journey to Herself author Judith Duerk asks, “How might your life have been different if there had been a place for you? A place for you to go… a place of women, to help you learn the ways of woman… a place where you were nurtured from the ancient flow sustaining you and steadying you as you sought to become yourself. A place of women to help you find and trust the ancient flow already there within yourself… waiting to be released… A place of women… How might your life be different?”1
For my daughter and for the daughters of other women I know who are raising them to know the Goddess and to recognize their sacred natures as women, we are creating that place, even as – for most – there was no such place for us. How WOULD my life have been different if I, like my daughter, had first entered into the warm enfolding darkness of a Maiden Sweat lodge when I was but three years old? If I had learned to seek my answers, and receive my validation, from within? If I had known that my experiences as a girl and a woman were sacred? If I had been encouraged to find my own way of expressing my connection to the Divine? If I had come to know that my body was beautiful, my emotions were powerful, and my ability to express myself, limitless?
One of the ways I have tried to support this sense of the sacred in my young daughter’s life is to invite her to share in communal experiences of the Goddess in all-women settings. The yearly Womongathering festival in the Northeastern United States is a powerful place for such experiences. At her first Womangathering, in 2004, Ariana and I stood waiting outside the ritual space, surrounded by friends and strangers, all joined in our love for the Lady. My precious three year old walked along the path, picking up rocks and gifting them to the women around us. They were taken by her charm, and cherished the special stones she had picked especially for each of them.
Due to inclement weather, the opening ritual was held indoors, and we sat in the back of the large gymnasium because I was unsure how Ariana would do in such a large group of women and I didn’t want to disturb the flow of the work. It turns out that I needn’t have worried. She was completely taken in by the chanting and the drumming, and swayed along with the snake dancers as they blessed the sacred space. As each of the quarters we called, the group responded “Blessed Be” and in the silence that followed, Ariana called out “Blessings Be!” At the sound of her voice, hundreds of women turned around to see who owned the small confident voice, and smiled at this littlest priestess. With each quarter call, she responded “Blessings Be!” in her own space and time, eliciting smiles and laughter from all around.
Everyone knew and recognized her throughout the course of the rest of the festival. Dubbed the “Blessed Be Priestess”, Ariana was approached and hugged by the many women who had been touched by her ritual participation, and I realized as the festival went on that just as Ariana was learning about the Goddess and about her own spiritual nature, this very process was a source of teaching and opening and healing for the other women who were there. I had never been so proud to be known simply as “Ariana’s mother” and it is a role I know I will always cherish and hold with joy in my heart.
To see the wonders of the Goddess through the eyes of a child is to see them as if for the first time. The leaves dancing spirals down a windblown lane hold that much more magick when a child delights in them. Paying attention to the cycles of the moon holds that much more mystery as you chart her ebb and flow with a sliver of a maiden at your side. Through my daughter’s sense of joy and wonder, things I thought I had understood and mastered symbolically and intellectually have found their way into my soul to take root and grow anew, now infused with a sense of grace and deep beauty.
Recalling my own process when I first started down the Goddess path, I remember how difficult it was for me to learn to hear the voice of the Lady with clarity and discernment. It took time to unravel the tangle of my inner resistance, tied up as it was in issues of worthlessness and poor self-esteem. How different my experience would have been had I not spent so much time and energy in fighting myself and questioning my worth! I know that if could give my daughter but one gift, it would be for her to trust her inner wisdom and fully realize her sacred nature by recognizing the source of Divinity lies nowhere but within.
One night as Ariana was getting ready for sleep, she looked up at the plaque of the Goddess that has been hanging above our family bed since the day she was born.
“Who is that lady, Momma?” She pointed up at the image that I had purchased because it evoked the energy of the Goddess for whom my daughter had been named.
“That’s a picture of the Goddess,” I answered.
“That’s the Goddess?”
“No, sweetling! That’s not the Goddess – just a picture of Her. It helps us to remember that She is always with us, looking after us and loving us.”
“Oooh,” she said, as if understanding.
I seized upon the moment. “Do you know where the Goddess really is?”
She looked up at the plaque and thought for a moment. “In outer space with the moon and the stars?” she asked, taking cues from the image above her.
I smiled, “No, my dearest. Not in outer space. The Goddess lives in your heart.”
“In my heart?” she repeated, unsure of this new information.
“That’s right, in your heart. And any time you want to talk with Her, all you need to do is close your eyes, put your hands over your heart, and feel it fill up with love. Once you feel that nice warm love, you can talk to Her about anything. Try it!”
She closed her eyes and put her hands over her heart. “That’s it, “ I encouraged her, “think of all the things that make you happy – drawing pictures, dancing, playing with the cats – everything you can think of. Now, think about all of the people you love and who love you – me, daddy, all your grandparents and cousins and uncles and aunts – think about what it’s like to be kissed and hugged and snuggled all cozy and warm and feel that in your heart.”
As I spoke, I watched a smile spread across her face as she imagined all of these things. “How do you feel?” I asked.
“Good!”
“Great! That’s where the Goddess is – there in your heart! Now you can ask questions and talk to Her about anything you want.”
“Ok, “ she said, and was quiet for a few moments. I noticed how her breath had instinctively become soft and rhythmic.
She opened her eyes and said, “The Goddess said that She is in your heart too, Momma!”
Tears sprang into my eyes as I said, “Yes! Yes she is! She is in the heart of all living things.”
“Even my cats?”
I pulled her close and gave her a huge hug, “Especially your cats!”
It is hard to know how much a young child can understand of abstract concepts like Goddess and love, and what is meant by the heart. I have found that it is important to hold the space for these concepts and to reinforce them much as possible when opportunities present themselves.  I am often amazed at the sophisticated level of thought of which a child is capable, especially when it comes to matters of the spirit. Perhaps it is because they are closer to the spirit world than are we, and hold memories of their soul’s true nature. Or perhaps it is that they have not yet learned the meaning of impossibility – a grace, I think, it is a parent’s duty to protect. Still, even knowing this, I am often awed and humbled by my daughter.
“Momma, what’s wrong with Trees and Windows? She’s not swimming” The inevitable question came sooner than I had hoped. My husband won a goldfish for Ariana at a carnival the week before; she was quite taken with this little goldfish in a bag and named her “Trees and Windows.” We got a bowl for her with cobalt blue beads and a piece of coral to create a snug little home. We put the bowl in Ariana’s room and she proudly fed the fish every day. Now, this!
I followed Ariana into her room and saw that indeed, Trees and Windows was no longer with us and was currently floating upside down in her bowl. Och! How to explain death to a three year old!
I gathered her close, “Honey, I am afraid that Trees and Windows has died.”
“Died?”
“Yes, love. She’s gone back to the Goddess – all that is left now is her body”
She shed some tears as we took her out of the bowl and reverently committed her fishy body to the mystic watery spiral of rebirth — the toilet.
I took the empty bowl out of her room, and Ariana stayed behind because she wanted to spend some time alone. After a while, she came back to me and said, “Momma, I don’t have to miss Trees and Windows.”
“You don’t? Why not?”
“Because she is my heart. She went back to the Goddess and the Goddess is in my heart so that’s where Trees and Windows is too.”
My goodness! What a complex theological leap for such a young child! I was pleased and amazed that she had been able to integrate the things I was trying to gently teach her, and that she was able to use this as a source of comfort. Too, it spoke of a recognition of the interconnectedness of all things, an understanding of which I believe is the foundation for a life lived in harmony and respect for the Earth and all who dwell on her.
I am learning too, that the presence of the sacred Now is a child’s constant companion. My daughter doesn’t need to think about honoring the essence of life – it is second nature for her to be thankful for the gifts of leaves, flowers and acorns, to blow kisses of thanks to the Sun for it’s warmth or to give hugs of kinship to every tree as we pass. The beauty of walking the path of the Goddess with Ariana is that I find myself opening in places I’ve never considered possible in my own life, and I am learning to see and explore the world in a whole new way. Whether we are looking for faeries among the wild flowers or thanking the crickets for their twilight song, I am healing old wounds of limitation and birthing myself anew through the gift that is my daughter.
I love to watch her when she is completely immersed in her inner world, unaware of my presence and lacking any shred of self-consciousness. She makes fairy houses out of stones and branches when we are in the country on her grandmother’s land, and bakes magical pies and cookies to leave for their tea parties. She likes to rearrange the altar we created in her room, moving around all of the various leaves, shells and dried flowers with which she has adorned it, talking to the wooden carving of the Goddess holding a baby (“That’s me with the Goddess before She put me in your belly!” she once told me) and counting the tumbled gemstones as she drops them one by one into her small cast iron cauldron. I love to kiss her while she is sleeping, drawing the covers around her as she snuggles the purple Goddess plush doll that was one of her first gifts.
I thought I knew the meaning of joy until the first time I heard the familiar strains of “We All Come from the Goddess” pass between my small daughter’s lips – I have often sung her to sleep with this chant, and we’ve sung it together as we played our drums. But this was the first time she sang it alone and spontaneously, and while it may be a mother’s bias, I know I have never heard it sung more beautifully or with more meaning than in her sweet scratchy baby voice. “This is my favorite song, Momma!” she announced as she danced in circles around me
“Mine too, sweetheart. Mine too.”

**********************************************************************************
From a mother that has lost a daughter from a tragic accident I reflect my 18 years of sharing the Goddess path with my daughter.
~Elder Airwolf~

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Blessed Father's Day Legionnaires!

 

~CELEBRATING DAD~

 

"A dad is someone who 
wants to catch you before you fall 
but instead picks you up, 
brushes you off, 
and lets you try again.

A dad is someone who 
wants to keep you from making mistakes 
but instead lets you find your own way, 
even though his heart breaks in silence 
when you get hurt.

A dad is someone who 
holds you when you cry, 
scolds you when you break the rules 
shines with pride when you succeed, 
and has faith in you even when you fail..."

While many Pagan paths identify themselves as “goddess traditions,” there are just as many which honor the sacred masculine alongside the divine feminine. Rather than being goddess-centric, a tradition honoring the sacred masculine will put the god on an equal playing field with the goddess rather than identifying him as simply the divine consort - and some Pagan traditions do honor just a god, and leave the goddess out completely.

As with the sacred feminine, the celebration of the sacred masculine often relies upon a system of archetypes. From an anthropological standpoint, there are several major male archetypes that seem to appear in a variety of cultures: the warrior/hero, the hunter, the priest/magician, the lover and the king.

The warrior appears in many forms and shapes. He is brave and honorable, and fights for that which he believes is right and just. While the warrior may not always make decisions which are popular, he typically tries to make the ones that are fair. The warrior can be seen in deities such as the Roman Mars, the Greek Ares, and the Norse god Thor. The hero is the youthful, more impulsive incarnation of the warrior. The warrior is someone who defends those he loves, and doesn’t raise his sword out of anger.

The hunter also appears, in modern society, as the provider. While men may no longer have to go out and spear a mastodon to feed their family, many men remain the primary breadwinners in the home, and find themselves under increasing pressure to continue to provide well. Some men find the very nature of this archetype confining. Dustin is a Pennsylvania Heathen who says, “My wife has a career and a job that’s as good as mine. We’re both equally capable and responsible. But I was raised by a mom who stayed home while my dad worked two jobs - it’s hard for me to put aside the idea that I have to be the sole breadwinner. On the other hand, by being an equal partner with my wife, that creates less financial stress for me as an individual.”

The priest, or magician, is the creative inventor or problem solver. He takes on intellectual challenges, asks lots of questions, and becomes analytical in his dealings with others. The magician or priest can also be a bit manipulative, because he’s smart - he’ll sometimes deliberately ask a question knowing the answer, as a sort of test.

Another well known aspect of the sacred masculine is the archetype of the fertile lover. He is sensual and passionate, embracing pleasure both for himself and his partner. In the spring, this aspect of the masculine is often embodied in Cernunnos, the forest god. The lover is in touch with his own intuition, and is compassionate and empathetic. If the warrior takes on life’s physical challenges, the lover takes on our emotional challenges.

Finally, the kingly archetype is that of the leader. A king is always in charge, because he is able to bring the qualities of all the other archetypes together into one handy package. He has the strength of the warrior, the wisdom of the priest, the compassion of the lover, and the nurturing aspects of the provider/hunter.

Some god-centric traditions have faced backlash from the Pagan community for not honoring the sacred feminine. Asher, a Pagan in Florida, belongs to a Roman Pagan group that pays tribute to the god Mars. They do not honor a goddess. “None of the other Roman groups seem to mind, but when we get to any sort of community event, a lot of the NeoWiccan groups get really upset. We’ve been accused of promoting patriarchy, discriminating against women, and trying to oppress the female members of our community. Nothing could be further from the truth. We’re trying to celebrate the masculine, but that doesn’t - and shouldn’t - take away from people who honor the feminine.”

If you have a son who's Pagan, honor him as well.

 

 

~RITUAL~

 

Prior to the ritual, make a headdress for each male that will be present. This can include horns, antlers, branches, feathers, and other symbols of fertility and masculinity. Headdresses are fairly simple to make - use a strip of heavy fabric or cardboard cut to size, and just glue items on it. If your boys are younger, this is a fun craft project. Assign one male to act out the part of the Horned God in the ritual.

Also, give each member of the group some sort of noisemaker -- drums, rattles, bells, etc.

This is a ritual best performed in a group, either as a family or coven. If you normally cast a circle or call the Quarters in a ceremony, do so at this time. Light a red or gold candle in the center of your altar to represent the Sun.

The High Priestess (HPs) or whoever is leading the ritual should face the sun, and say:

We are here as a family (or coven)
On this longest of days.
The power of the Sun is above us,
and its heat and strength reminds us
of the power of the God.

At this point, the group members should shake their rattles, bang their drums, ring their bells. Do so slowly, almost at the tempo of a heartbeat.

The HPs continues:

The God is strong and powerful,
he is virile and fertile.
He is the Lord of the Hunt,
the King of the Forest,
and with the Goddess, together they create Life.

At this point, speed up the beat of the drums and rattles just a bit.We honor the God today, and celebrate
the masculine within him.

The HPs goes on and says:

I call upon the Horned God!
Cernunnos, Herne, Apollo!
We ask you to honor us with your presence!

Now the drumming should speed up even more. The man or boy chosen to be the Horned God leads the male members of the group around the altar clockwise in a dance, keeping up with the rhythm of the drums and rattles. As the males circle the altar, they should move faster each time.

Allow the men and boys to dance around the altar as many times as they like. As the dance gets faster, the music will get faster too, until there is a palpable hum of energy. This sensation is often indicative of the presence of the Divine. Let the music run its course -- it will end when it's ready to end, and at that time, the dance should stop too.

Once the dancing and drumming has ceased, the HPs should call out:

Horned one, God of the Hunt,
Lord of the Forest!
We honor you tonight, on this longest day.
We celebrate the men in our lives,
those who raised us,
those who love us,
those that we are raising.
We honor them in Your name.

Each member of the group, both male and female, may make an offering at this time. If you have a fire burning, through your offerings into the flames. If you don't have a fire, place your offerings on the altar instead.

Take a few moments to reflect upon the balance of male and female in your life, and in the world. Think about the men you have known, and those you will know in the future. Recognize the qualities that make them honorable and worthy of your love.

When you are ready, dismiss the quarters or close the circle.

Tips:

Decorate your altar with the colors of midsummer -- golds and reds and yellows. You'll also want a candle in one of those colors.

If you don't have drums, rattles or bells, clap your hands or clack two sticks together!

~Elder Airwolf~

BLYSSFUL SATURN'S DAY PAGANS!

Blessed Day Pagans!

I hope all went well for your Friday 13 full moon, a very special day indeed. Now we are on our way for a Father's Day weekend.

Ritual To Celebrate Fathers

By Patti Wigington

In many traditions of Wicca and Paganism, there is a great deal of focus on the Goddess. Sometimes, there's so much attention to the feminine that the masculine aspects get overlooked. By welcoming the God of your tradition, you can honor the men who have impacted your life -- whether they raised you, loved you, or are being brought up by you. This simple rite also offers your boys a chance to get out there and dance, and to celebrate the masculine within themselves.

Prior to the ritual, make a headdress for each male that will be present. This can include horns, antlers, branches, feathers, and other symbols of fertility and masculinity. Headdresses are fairly simple to make - use a strip of heavy fabric or cardboard cut to size, and just glue items on it. If your boys are younger, this is a fun craft project. Assign one male to act out the part of the Horned God in the ritual.

Also, give each member of the group some sort of noisemaker -- drums, rattles, bells, etc.

This is a ritual best performed in a group, either as a family or coven. If you normally cast a circle or call the Quarters in a ceremony, do so at this time. Light a red or gold candle in the center of your altar to represent the Sun.

The High Priestess (HPs) or whoever is leading the ritual should face the sun, and say:

We are here as a family (or coven)
On this longest of days.
The power of the Sun is above us,
and its heat and strength reminds us
of the power of the God.

At this point, the group members should shake their rattles, bang their drums, ring their bells. Do so slowly, almost at the tempo of a heartbeat.

The HPs continues:

The God is strong and powerful,
he is virile and fertile.
He is the Lord of the Hunt,
the King of the Forest,
and with the Goddess, together they create Life.

At this point, speed up the beat of the drums and rattles just a bit. We honor the God today, and celebrate
the masculine within him.

The HPs goes on and says:

I call upon the Horned God!
Cernunnos, Herne, Apollo!
We ask you to honor us with your presence!

Now the drumming should speed up even more. The man or boy chosen to be the Horned God leads the male members of the group around the altar clockwise in a dance, keeping up with the rhythm of the drums and rattles. As the males circle the altar, they should move faster each time.

Allow the men and boys to dance around the altar as many times as they like. As the dance gets faster, the music will get faster too, until there is a palpable hum of energy. This sensation is often indicative of the presence of the Divine. Let the music run its course -- it will end when it's ready to end, and at that time, the dance should stop too.

Once the dancing and drumming has ceased, the HPs should call out:

Horned one, God of the Hunt,
Lord of the Forest!
We honor you tonight, on this longest day.
We celebrate the men in our lives,
those who raised us,
those who love us,
those that we are raising.
We honor them in Your name.

Each member of the group, both male and female, may make an offering at this time. If you have a fire burning, through your offerings into the flames. If you don't have a fire, place your offerings on the altar instead.

Take a few moments to reflect upon the balance of male and female in your life, and in the world. Think about the men you have known, and those you will know in the future. Recognize the qualities that make them honorable and worthy of your love.

When you are ready, dismiss the quarters or close the circle.

Tips:

Decorate your altar with the colors of midsummer -- golds and reds and yellows. You'll also want a candle in one of those colors.
If you don't have drums, rattles or bells, clap your hands or clack two sticks together!

*************************************************************************

I am currently in the process of moving to a new home and have temporaraly closed the Legion's Clever Crones Cauldron of Antiquities Shoppe during this transition and will re-open in the new year with some discount coupons, so please be patient. In this new country home I will again have a studio to work in and make more specialized products for the shoppe.

Also my time within the website and facebook group houses will be limited for the next few weeks. My staff will be covering to the best of their abilities so please be kind and patient.

Have a blessed weekend,

~Elder Airwolf~

 

Blessed Full Moon Legionnaires


Well time to bid you all blessed full moon and sweet dreams~

Friday the 13th Dispel Negativity and Bad Luck Spell

Items Needed:

Black Cat shaped item if Possible (charm, totem, picture)
Patchouli Herb or Incense
Patchouli Oil or Cypress Oil
Censor
New Black Candle, (anointed) 

Place the Black Cat item on the Altar, to the Left of the Censor and Anoint it with, the Patchouli Oil. 

Place on the Right side of the Censor the New Black Candle.

Drop some Patchouli herb into the Censor.

Light the Candle.

Take the Cat item in your hands and as you concentrate it on your intent, pass it thought the smoke 9 (nine) times while saying this chant.

Negative energy be gone away,
From my life be gone to stay.
Troubles go and leave my life,
Never again to cause me strife.
So mote it be.

Place the Cat item next to the Black Cat candle until it burns away and then you can carry it, place it in your car or hang it in your home for protection for negative energy.

~Elder Airwolf~