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 am a retired MSW, Psychotherapist/Hypnotherapist, and a Dr of Ministries. I provide individual and family counseling.

Understanding The Yearly Cycle

 

Everything in "nature" works accordingly to clockwork - the seasons, months and days - all work according to a defined destined cycle. All of nature is working in harmony with the clockwork of "life" - and collectively all of "nature" is working to sustain each and everyone in the world. If only humans would LISTEN to "nature" and the clockwork of "life" in the same way that nature does - then the world would be PERFECT and BLISSFULLY PEACEFUL.
Unfortunately "humans" interfere with nature - and when we do - because nature is fixed and defined - any interference in nature is immediately creating a NEGATIVE KARMA in our own aura. People can amass a lot of negative karma - before and suddenly - we are blocked. Some people are lucky and the NEGATIVE KARMA creates negative situations immediately and hence cleanses the aura immediately - others are unlucky and get away with amassing a lot of NEGATIVE KARMA until something BIG happens. This definition of spiritual astrology explains why inexplicable situations happen - even if not defined in a person's astrological chart - because the person has interfered with NATURE.
When you comprehend that "nature" is constantly working to sustain each and everyone in the world - you will realize that just like nature has a yearly cycle - you too have your own yearly cycle - which is working to SUSTAIN your life. In the same way, you wouldn't plant seeds in the freezing cold winter and expect them to grow - would you? You wouldn't go out in the middle of the night shopping either? nor would you go to sleep during the daytime - nor would you dream of missing a day - for everyday is necessary in life. Hence understanding your yearly, monthly and even your daily astrological cycle is vitally important to living in HARMONY with "nature", with your destiny - and ensures you value and appreciate the uniqueness of EACH and EVERYDAY of your life.

The Yearly Cycle of your Life
Life Cycle of "The Seed of Your Life"
By Months starting with your Conception Month
Your "Astrological Year" is defined in the 12 Astrological Houses of your Yearly cycle and begins the yearly cycle with your conception anniversary. As explained on - "Your True Star Sign" - life cycle's start and begin with your conception - the moment the SEED OF LIFE is planted.
It doesn't matter that you don't know it exactly - as the YEARLY / MONTHLY cycle defines groups according to your overall SUN star sign - that begins with the approximate day when the SEED of your life was planted - that's your yearly renewal date - to begin your cycle of life anew.

Your Birth Sun Star Sign
The 1st month of your "Astrological Year"

Aries-Cancer
Taurus-Leo
Gemini-Virgo
Cancer-Libra
Leo-Scorpio
Virgo-Sagittarius
Libra-Capricorn
Scorpio-Aquarius
Sagittarius-Pisces
Capricorn-Aries
Aquarius-Taurus
Pisces-Gemini

The 12 Month Cycle of Your Life
Each Month is defined by one of the 12 Astrological Houses
"Timing Of Life" is exceedingly important as Each Month Has a Unique Purpose
The Yearly Cycle of your Life - By Months - starting with anniversary of your conception month as 1st Month

Your "Astrological Year"

1st Month - 1st House
"Who you are" - Your identity and destined purpose for the next 12 months defined. Each year your destiny redefines a NEW purpose - and it is in this month when the GREATEST and BIGGEST changes happen in a person's life. Suddenly "DESTINY" can make you END an OLD life and BEGIN a new life. Everything that happens is DESTINY and hence will happen quickly, easily and will be LUCKY as a "sign" it's your DESTINY for this new cycle in your life.

2nd Month - 2nd House
Your "possessions" - the tools, finances and income you need to accomplish your purpose. You need money to live - and in this month your life is defined on how you earn your money - and destiny requires you to have an INCREASE your income or a DECREASE - depending on the lessons you need to learn during the year.

3rd Month - 3rd House
Connections through Communication - mental intelligence, clarity to connect thoughts and words. The month when your intelligence is stimulate through the people you connect with - a time when your year is defined to find good and bad connections with people - and decisions with how you are going to handle these people in your life. This is the month when in your "communication" and "thoughts" disconnections are made to the old as new connections are created.

4th Month - 4th House
"Family and Home" - people and places that creates your roots in this physical world are defined - you know where you belong defined by the positive energy your HOME and your FAMILY give you. If you are living in the WRONG place and connected with the WRONG people - this month will force you to see this and events will happen to guide you to a SAFE place for you. If you're in the RIGHT place - then in this month - your home becomes a place of great happiness for you - filled with all the RIGHT people that makes you feel "at home".

5th Month - 5th House
Pleasure and desires - what makes you ENJOY life - feel good about life - creates a "desire" for living life. Each and every year as you mature - the "pleasures" you enjoy changes - if suddenly you don't feel like doing something and want to do something new in this month - it's a "sign" that your aura is changing and maturing. It's inexplicable WHY you want to do things, WHY you enjoy some things and WHY you want other things - but that's destiny this month - you just "do" - and then you realize WHY you've been driven to WANT to do this - as it makes your soul GROW.

6th Month - 6th House
Physical well being and Health - the strength of your physical body enables you to accomplish your purpose. It's not just about your physical BODY - but everything in your AURA - needs to be RIGHT for you. If your doing something that's unhealthy for you - and is draining on your soul - then you'll be STOPPED from doing it. Likewise, everything that's GOOD for you - you'll do - eating habits change, physical exercise and looking after your body - because when you have a HEALTHY body - you have a HEALTHY spiritual soul.

7th Month - 7th House
Partnerships and close relationships - no-one can succeed alone - we all need strong partnerships to succeed. Even if the people are DIFFERENT from you - that's OK because partnerships are often created between people who have different strengths - and your weakness is supported by their strength and likewise your strengths support their weakness. During this month - you learn to appreciate all your close relationships - although it can sometimes reveal to you your weakness - which makes you look for HELP. This month HELP comes and you've got yourself a pleasantly balanced relationship.

8th Month - 8th House
Strongest emotional and karmic relationships - Sexual unions & Spiritual energies creates strongest BONDS between you and others which act to transform your life and your aura to become wholesome. This month - you connect with someone STRONGER than you connect with anyone in your life. It's a STRONG energy - sexual energies are by nature strong - as they AWAKEN almost every part of your mind and body - with power that you never knew you had. For more spiritually mature people - this month is also a month of SPIRITUAL unions - because being connected STRONGLY to someone in spirit world - is a unique personal experience which AWAKENS your soul. Hence, this is month when coincidentally, people whom are close to you might DIE and passover to spirit world - OR when you have a spiritual experience that enlightens you and AWAKENS you - that there's MORE to life than physical LIFE.

9th Month - 9th House
Understanding yourself - and allowing others to understand you - change and transformation through wisdom, knowledge, and learning through interaction with ALL kinds of people from all over the world. Diversity and wisdom brings you the ability to understand yourself better. The more you search the more you'll learn. This month will encourage you to meet, interact and learn from many different kinds of people. The more people you know - the more enhanced your character becomes - as your aura is IMPRESSED by and takes energies from EVERY experience and EVERYONE in your life. Some of whom make a bigger impression on you whilst others force you to do the "opposite" as you'd never want to become like "them". You can only truly understand yourself - you individuality and your role in other people's lives- when you interact with OTHER people - and sense what you're impressed to learn from them - and what they're impressed from you - your character and your wisdom.

10th Month - 10th House
Destiny - are you exactly where you should be? If you are it's a month of destined "signs" and good luck - a month filled with happiness from WITHIN that exudes and fills your aura too. If you're not where you should be doing what you should be doing and IF you have any minor adjustments you need to make - then it's a month and time of BLOCKAGES, frustrations, stress and turmoil - to MOVE you to where you should be. This is the House of "guidance" to guide you to your DESTINY. This month is month of your real birthday- as the INNER version of "you" reveals itself to yourself - and to the world - you learn what needs to change URGENTLY. This month your inner and outer worlds will attempt to harmonize themselves. If they aren't in "harmony" - birthday's are "time of conflict" and "change". The good side is DESTINY does come and help you - to get it right.

11th Month - 11th House
Inspired hopes, aspirations and dreams - "things" what you want to happen in your life and feel are possible but you feel unable to have. You need "goals" in order to move forward - and even FAR AWAY destinations can be brought closer through your thoughts, hopes and dreams. This month can create dramatic events - especially if your destiny is now working on preparing the next years cycle of your life - you will get inexplicable URGES with a NEED to WANT to be liberated from the life you're living at the moment. It might not be so rebellious - but it will show you REALISTICALLY where you are - and encourage you to LOOK AFAR and dream of possibilities. These might all be illusions - but in order to stimulate you and excite you - you need hopes and dreams and something to live for.

12th Month - 12th House
Karma - means explaining the inexplicable - none of us understand WHY things happen - but they do happen - and when you least expect them too - both good and bad - that's Karma. Only when you LET GO , FORGIVE and HEAL the "Past" - then Karmic changes happen. This month is usually a month of DEEP and meaningful energies - even if you never CRY - then this month you can CRY - for "tears" can wash away all regret and mistakes - and mysteriously FREE you from any bad "karma" that's inexplicably holding your life back. If you BREAK karma in this month - then you'll be liberated FOREVER - and then the 1st Month of your cycle - you will be liberated by destiny to begin a "new" life.


The Month Begins When Sun enters the Star sign
In spiritual astrology - each of the 12 Astrological Houses BEGIN when the Sun enters the star sign of that House
Then NEW defining destined events really start to unfold at the New Moon of that House.

The Monthly Lunar Cycle of your Life
According to the star sign of Your Moon
As I explain on LUCKY Right Times each and every month the transiting Moon conjuncts your natal Sun and the transiting Moon conjuncts your natal Moon. These are times of RENEWAL for you.

[1] transiting Moon conjuncts your natal Sun - is your own personal NEW MOON - and starts the monthly cycle - hence the few days leading up to "Your" personal New Moon - are karmic 12th house days for you - heal, forgive and wait until your personal New Moon when Moon meets your natal Sun to START something NEW for you.

[2] transiting Moon conjuncts your natal Moon - is a fascinating conjunction and is when "you" get a recharge and plugged into your destiny - when your feeling are 100% accurate. For the truth is NON of us understand why we do many things in our lives - most of us - do them because of the positively GOOD feelings we get to do them. The Moon creates these feelings - sometimes you know you can't trust your feelings - but Moon conjunct natal Moon - you know you can.

As the Moon astrology cycle's are monthly - can I suggest you keep a diary to learn about yourself - and to know which star signs Moon is good for you. For example, if your Moon is in Earth Signs of Taurus, Capricorn or Capricorn - then transit of Moon in Earth Sign of Taurus, Capricorn or Capricorn will be good for you - whereas transit of Moon in Leo and Aquarius will be complicated, frustrating and useless to most Earth signs.

Remember life is a continuous journey of cycle's so NOTHING ever stays the same - everything is always changing - keep moving forward and never "live" life in the "past". And even if you're having a difficult stressful day - it will CHANGE WITHIN 3 days - as the Moon takes 2.5 days to transit each star sign. So no-one should be - nor ever be - stressed out for more than 48 hours !

Elder Airwolf

[Understanding The Yearly Cycle Everything in "nature" works accordingly to clockwork - the seasons, months and days - all work according to a defined destined cycle. All of nature is working in harmony with the clockwork of "life" - and collectively all of "nature" is working to sustain each and everyone in the world. If only humans would LISTEN to "nature" and the clockwork of "life" in the same way that nature does - then the world would be PERFECT and BLISSFULLY PEACEFUL. Unfortunately "humans" interfere with nature - and when we do - because nature is fixed and defined - any interference in nature is immediately creating a NEGATIVE KARMA in our own aura. People can amass a lot of negative karma - before and suddenly - we are blocked. Some people are lucky and the NEGATIVE KARMA creates negative situations immediately and hence cleanses the aura immediately - others are unlucky and get away with amassing a lot of NEGATIVE KARMA until something BIG happens. This definition of spiritual astrology explains why inexplicable situations happen - even if not defined in a person's astrological chart - because the person has interfered with NATURE. When you comprehend that "nature" is constantly working to sustain each and everyone in the world - you will realize that just like nature has a yearly cycle - you too have your own yearly cycle - which is working to SUSTAIN your life. In the same way, you wouldn't plant seeds in the freezing cold winter and expect them to grow - would you? You wouldn't go out in the middle of the night shopping either? nor would you go to sleep during the daytime - nor would you dream of missing a day - for everyday is necessary in life. Hence understanding your yearly, monthly and even your daily astrological cycle is vitally important to living in HARMONY with "nature", with your destiny - and ensures you value and appreciate the uniqueness of EACH and EVERYDAY of your life. The Yearly Cycle of your Life Life Cycle of "The Seed of Your Life" By Months starting with your Conception Month Your "Astrological Year" is defined in the 12 Astrological Houses of your Yearly cycle and begins the yearly cycle with your conception anniversary. As explained on - "Your True Star Sign" - life cycle's start and begin with your conception - the moment the SEED OF LIFE is planted. It doesn't matter that you don't know it exactly - as the YEARLY / MONTHLY cycle defines groups according to your overall SUN star sign - that begins with the approximate day when the SEED of your life was planted - that's your yearly renewal date - to begin your cycle of life anew. Your Birth Sun Star Sign The 1st month of your "Astrological Year" Aries-Cancer Taurus-Leo Gemini-Virgo Cancer-Libra Leo-Scorpio Virgo-Sagittarius Libra-Capricorn Scorpio-Aquarius Sagittarius-Pisces Capricorn-Aries Aquarius-Taurus Pisces-Gemini The 12 Month Cycle of Your Life Each Month is defined by one of the 12 Astrological Houses "Timing Of Life" is exceedingly important as Each Month Has a Unique Purpose The Yearly Cycle of your Life - By Months - starting with anniversary of your conception month as 1st Month Your "Astrological Year" 1st Month - 1st House "Who you are" - Your identity and destined purpose for the next 12 months defined. Each year your destiny redefines a NEW purpose - and it is in this month when the GREATEST and BIGGEST changes happen in a person's life. Suddenly "DESTINY" can make you END an OLD life and BEGIN a new life. Everything that happens is DESTINY and hence will happen quickly, easily and will be LUCKY as a "sign" it's your DESTINY for this new cycle in your life. 2nd Month - 2nd House Your "possessions" - the tools, finances and income you need to accomplish your purpose. You need money to live - and in this month your life is defined on how you earn your money - and destiny requires you to have an INCREASE your income or a DECREASE - depending on the lessons you need to learn during the year. 3rd Month - 3rd House Connections through Communication - mental intelligence, clarity to connect thoughts and words. The month when your intelligence is stimulate through the people you connect with - a time when your year is defined to find good and bad connections with people - and decisions with how you are going to handle these people in your life. This is the month when in your "communication" and "thoughts" disconnections are made to the old as new connections are created. 4th Month - 4th House "Family and Home" - people and places that creates your roots in this physical world are defined - you know where you belong defined by the positive energy your HOME and your FAMILY give you. If you are living in the WRONG place and connected with the WRONG people - this month will force you to see this and events will happen to guide you to a SAFE place for you. If you're in the RIGHT place - then in this month - your home becomes a place of great happiness for you - filled with all the RIGHT people that makes you feel "at home". 5th Month - 5th House Pleasure and desires - what makes you ENJOY life - feel good about life - creates a "desire" for living life. Each and every year as you mature - the "pleasures" you enjoy changes - if suddenly you don't feel like doing something and want to do something new in this month - it's a "sign" that your aura is changing and maturing. It's inexplicable WHY you want to do things, WHY you enjoy some things and WHY you want other things - but that's destiny this month - you just "do" - and then you realize WHY you've been driven to WANT to do this - as it makes your soul GROW. 6th Month - 6th House Physical well being and Health - the strength of your physical body enables you to accomplish your purpose. It's not just about your physical BODY - but everything in your AURA - needs to be RIGHT for you. If your doing something that's unhealthy for you - and is draining on your soul - then you'll be STOPPED from doing it. Likewise, everything that's GOOD for you - you'll do - eating habits change, physical exercise and looking after your body - because when you have a HEALTHY body - you have a HEALTHY spiritual soul. 7th Month - 7th House Partnerships and close relationships - no-one can succeed alone - we all need strong partnerships to succeed. Even if the people are DIFFERENT from you - that's OK because partnerships are often created between people who have different strengths - and your weakness is supported by their strength and likewise your strengths support their weakness. During this month - you learn to appreciate all your close relationships - although it can sometimes reveal to you your weakness - which makes you look for HELP. This month HELP comes and you've got yourself a pleasantly balanced relationship. 8th Month - 8th House Strongest emotional and karmic relationships - Sexual unions & Spiritual energies creates strongest BONDS between you and others which act to transform your life and your aura to become wholesome. This month - you connect with someone STRONGER than you connect with anyone in your life. It's a STRONG energy - sexual energies are by nature strong - as they AWAKEN almost every part of your mind and body - with power that you never knew you had. For more spiritually mature people - this month is also a month of SPIRITUAL unions - because being connected STRONGLY to someone in spirit world - is a unique personal experience which AWAKENS your soul. Hence, this is month when coincidentally, people whom are close to you might DIE and passover to spirit world - OR when you have a spiritual experience that enlightens you and AWAKENS you - that there's MORE to life than physical LIFE. 9th Month - 9th House Understanding yourself - and allowing others to understand you - change and transformation through wisdom, knowledge, and learning through interaction with ALL kinds of people from all over the world. Diversity and wisdom brings you the ability to understand yourself better. The more you search the more you'll learn. This month will encourage you to meet, interact and learn from many different kinds of people. The more people you know - the more enhanced your character becomes - as your aura is IMPRESSED by and takes energies from EVERY experience and EVERYONE in your life. Some of whom make a bigger impression on you whilst others force you to do the "opposite" as you'd never want to become like "them". You can only truly understand yourself - you individuality and your role in other people's lives- when you interact with OTHER people - and sense what you're impressed to learn from them - and what they're impressed from you - your character and your wisdom. 10th Month - 10th House Destiny - are you exactly where you should be? If you are it's a month of destined "signs" and good luck - a month filled with happiness from WITHIN that exudes and fills your aura too. If you're not where you should be doing what you should be doing and IF you have any minor adjustments you need to make - then it's a month and time of BLOCKAGES, frustrations, stress and turmoil - to MOVE you to where you should be. This is the House of "guidance" to guide you to your DESTINY. This month is month of your real birthday- as the INNER version of "you" reveals itself to yourself - and to the world - you learn what needs to change URGENTLY. This month your inner and outer worlds will attempt to harmonize themselves. If they aren't in "harmony" - birthday's are "time of conflict" and "change". The good side is DESTINY does come and help you - to get it right. 11th Month - 11th House Inspired hopes, aspirations and dreams - "things" what you want to happen in your life and feel are possible but you feel unable to have. You need "goals" in order to move forward - and even FAR AWAY destinations can be brought closer through your thoughts, hopes and dreams. This month can create dramatic events - especially if your destiny is now working on preparing the next years cycle of your life - you will get inexplicable URGES with a NEED to WANT to be liberated from the life you're living at the moment. It might not be so rebellious - but it will show you REALISTICALLY where you are - and encourage you to LOOK AFAR and dream of possibilities. These might all be illusions - but in order to stimulate you and excite you - you need hopes and dreams and something to live for. 12th Month - 12th House Karma - means explaining the inexplicable - none of us understand WHY things happen - but they do happen - and when you least expect them too - both good and bad - that's Karma. Only when you LET GO , FORGIVE and HEAL the "Past" - then Karmic changes happen. This month is usually a month of DEEP and meaningful energies - even if you never CRY - then this month you can CRY - for "tears" can wash away all regret and mistakes - and mysteriously FREE you from any bad "karma" that's inexplicably holding your life back. If you BREAK karma in this month - then you'll be liberated FOREVER - and then the 1st Month of your cycle - you will be liberated by destiny to begin a "new" life. The Month Begins When Sun enters the Star sign In spiritual astrology - each of the 12 Astrological Houses BEGIN when the Sun enters the star sign of that House Then NEW defining destined events really start to unfold at the New Moon of that House. The Monthly Lunar Cycle of your Life According to the star sign of Your Moon As I explain on LUCKY Right Times each and every month the transiting Moon conjuncts your natal Sun and the transiting Moon conjuncts your natal Moon. These are times of RENEWAL for you. [1] transiting Moon conjuncts your natal Sun - is your own personal NEW MOON - and starts the monthly cycle - hence the few days leading up to "Your" personal New Moon - are karmic 12th house days for you - heal, forgive and wait until your personal New Moon when Moon meets your natal Sun to START something NEW for you. [2] transiting Moon conjuncts your natal Moon - is a fascinating conjunction and is when "you" get a recharge and plugged into your destiny - when your feeling are 100% accurate. For the truth is NON of us understand why we do many things in our lives - most of us - do them because of the positively GOOD feelings we get to do them. The Moon creates these feelings - sometimes you know you can't trust your feelings - but Moon conjunct natal Moon - you know you can. As the Moon astrology cycle's are monthly - can I suggest you keep a diary to learn about yourself - and to know which star signs Moon is good for you. For example, if your Moon is in Earth Signs of Taurus, Capricorn or Capricorn - then transit of Moon in Earth Sign of Taurus, Capricorn or Capricorn will be good for you - whereas transit of Moon in Leo and Aquarius will be complicated, frustrating and useless to most Earth signs. Remember life is a continuous journey of cycle's so NOTHING ever stays the same - everything is always changing - keep moving forward and never "live" life in the "past". And even if you're having a difficult stressful day - it will CHANGE WITHIN 3 days - as the Moon takes 2.5 days to transit each star sign. So no-one should be - nor ever be - stressed out for more than 48 hours ! Elder Airwolf]

Deity Assistance Spell

 

Whatever your problem is, there’s a deity who can help. This spell invokes divine assistance through burning incense. As the smoke rises, it carries your request into the heavens.

Tools:

A picture, figurine, or other image of your chosen deity
Incense
An incense burner
Matches or a lighter
A slip of paper
A pen or pencil

When: Depends on your intentions

Determine which deity is best suited to help you with your problem. The tables in Chapter 1 list some well-known deities from around the world and the areas they govern. Once you’ve decided which deity to call upon, find an image/ figurine of that god or goddess and display it on your altar.

Select an incense that corresponds to your intentions. Fit the incense into its burner and light it. Write your request on the slip of paper, fold it three times, and lay it at the feet of the deity. Envision your request floating up to the heavens, carried on the incense smoke to your chosen god or goddess.

Quiet your mind and listen for an answer or guidance. (Note: The answer may not come immediately— it could take a few days— so don’t grow impatient.) Allow the incense to burn down completely. Thank the deity for helping you and trust that aid will come at the appropriate time.

" There are no poisonous herbs. Only poisonous dosages."

Even deadly poisonous herbs, in minute dosages, are used to heal. Homeopathic medicines are so minute you can't detect any of it's chemical constituents in analysis and yet they are widely reported to be extremely beneficial (in double blind studies). This is not to say that you should go out and take tiny nibbles of known poisonous herbs because it is said to be beneficial: leave this up to a professional Healthcare Practitioner! The most widely known example is Digitalis: small doses are said to be good for many heart conditions, while a larger dose will stop the heart. And so, the opposite is true that large doses of innocuous herbs can do a great deal of damage. Anything taken regularly over a long period of time is stored in the body and could create a condition of toxicity. 

The best way for the user to protect themselves is to first educate themselves before they consume anything. This can be done by studying the many herbals available today, taking courses and classes by the many Herbalists, Natural Healthcare Practitioners and schools of natural healing. And second remember: All Things in Moderation. Even that cup of chamomile tea at bedtime can be causing you problems, especially if you find you can't get to sleep without it. Different Herbalists and Healthcare Practitioners have different "formulas" to avoid toxicity. Some say to leave one day a week where you don't take whatever herb you are using. Others say a week a month. Still others a month every six months. It depends on the Practitioner's opinion, the herb in question and the illness or condition being treated. However, this is often abandoned in the case of serious, long term illness. Again, ask your Practitioner their opinion. 

A good example of too much of a good thing is a story of one family and Echinacea. Echinacea is reported to be a very useful immune system "booster". I noticed this family was buying a lot of Echinacea, quite a lot: tincture, capsules and tea, purchased on a regular basis for several months I finally asked "What are you doing with all that Echinacea?". They felt that was a stupid question: They were taking it of course. I tried to convince them if they were consuming that much of this herb they were tempting disaster. Echinacea is not a tonic herb: that is an herb that "feeds the system". Basically, it is a stimulant: an immune system stimulant and if you take too much too long you over stimulate and then you "crash". They didn't listen and sure enough they started a cycle of constant illness. One flu, cold or virus after another; if it was going around, they caught it or couldn't get rid of it once they had it. Their immune systems had been sorely tried and compromised from constant stimulation. Finally, they listened and stopped taking the herb and built their immune systems strength back up, mostly with rest, gentle exercise, plenty of fresh water and a good diet; which is one of the best ways to keep your immune system and general health going anyway. Echinacea is said to do wonders for various illnesses and their symptoms with short term immune system stimulation. It should never be taken over the long term (general reports are regular daily use over several weeks is safe). If you are considering using herbs for your family's health this is definitely one you should look into and educate yourself about. This family was actually lucky in that what they did was repairable, though it did take almost six months before they felt all of them were back to normal.

One last bit of advice before you take an herb for the first time is to start very slowly. Always take smaller doses in the beginning just in case you have one of the rare allergies to whatever herb it is. For example, if you know you are allergic to one plant, check what family it is in and be cautious with other members in that family. You may or may not have a similar reaction, so if you need to take a similar herb, proceed with caution; start with small doses.

With education and common sense you should be able to use herbs for you and your family's health safely. Not only are herbs beautiful, abundant and mostly inexpensive they are also effective.

Faeries & the Moon

Faery Moon

Because the moon revolves around the Earth once every 28 days, or so, we may, on occasion have a year with 13 moons (rather than 12). The fourth full moon within a season, according to the Farmer’s Almanac, is known as a Blue Moon. (Note, some call the second full moon in a calendar month a Blue Moon). The Blue Moon is celebrated as a time to charge dreams and wishes with power so they may come into being.

However, there is another rare moon occurrence that seems to slip by, unnoticed. It’s known as the Sidhe (pronounced shee) Moon or Faery Moon (aka Black Moon). The Faery Moon is the second new moon in a calendar month, and this only occurs once every two to three years.

The Faery Moon is special to those who have a strong connection to the faery folk or follow the mist filled path of the Celts. During the Faery Moon, connections to the faery realm are stronger, and it’s a very favorable time to connect to a faery companion or guide. It’s also a powerful time to work on self, particularly bringing the shadow aspects into the light.

Though precious little is actually written about the Faery Moon in any sort of folklore, it doesn’t change the fact that it still carries a rather special magic, and those inclined to celebrate will very likely benefit from the effects that this rare new moon has to offer.

Cast a faery circle
To create a sacred space that encourages interaction with the faery folk, try casting a faery circle.

Before doing any sacred work, it’s very important to ground yourself – so take a few moments to breath deeply, and imagine that your energy flows deeply into the earth, anchoring and grounding you.

Then, face the east, raise your hands and say “welcome faery folk of the east, home of the whispering wind, clear the obstacles that block my path.”

Face the south, raise your hands and say “welcome faery folk of the south, home of the glimmering fire, grant me wisdom that I may reach my goals.”

Face the west, raise your hands and say “welcome faery folk of the west, home of the sparkling waters, I ask for the vision to know myself.”

Face the north, raise your hands and say “welcome faery folk of the north, home of the fertile earth, I ask for the strength to move forward and live my truth.”

Take a few moments to feel the energies that surround you.

While you’re in this sacred space you can do inner work, like meeting your faery guardian or journaling. You can also do group work, artwork, or anything that helps you to strengthen your connection to the faery. Be sure to include enjoying good food as part of your sacred ritual.

Meeting your faery guardian
After you cast the sacred faery circle, you can do a visualization to meet your faery guardian.

Imagine yourself in a sacred stone circle, like Stonehenge. In the center is a fire, and you gaze into the flames, relaxing. Ask first if you are meant to walk with a faery ally. If you get the answer, no, then breathe deeply, thank the faery folk, and allow yourself to gently return.

If you get the answer, yes, then give thanks, and then imagine that from each of the four directions faery beings now enter the stone circle. They come to welcome you. You may visit with them for a while, then they will return back to their realms. One faery may stand out from the rest, as your ally, or guide. Thank them.

Allow yourself to gaze again into the flames in the center of the stone circle, and breathing deeply, allow yourself to return back to the present space.

Opening the circle
It’s very important to open the circle when you are finished working with the faery. To keep the circle closed could mean keeping some very intense energies around you!

To open the circle, face the north, raise your hands and say, “faery folk of the north, thank you for your presence here today. Hail and farewell.”

Face the west, raise your hands and say, “faery folk of the west, thank you for your presence here today. Hail and farewell.”

Face the south, raise your hands and say, “faery folk of the south, thank you for your presence here today. Hail and farewell.”

Face the east, raise your hands and say, “faery folk of the east, thank you for your presence here today. Hail and farewell.”

Anytime we can allow ourselves to find reason to celebrate, and connect with the magical energies of the world around us, we allow ourselves to feel closer to our Creator, and grow spiritually and emotionally as we walk our path through this sacred world.

Upcoming Faery Moon Dates
July 30, 2011 – 11:40am (PDT) or 18:40
January 30, 2014 – 21:38
October 30, 2016 – 17:38
August 30, 2019 – 10:37

Midsummer Recipies

ApfelPfannkuchen (German Apple Pancakes)

2 large apples, any cooking variety
1/4 cup butter
1 cup flour
1 cup milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
confectioner's sugar

Preheat oven to 475°. Peel, core and very thinly slice the apples: you should have approximately 1-1/2 cups.

Melt 3 Tbsp. of the butter over medium low heat in a small fry pan, and sauté the apples until they are just tender. Keep apples warm while preparing the batter. Place a 9 or 10 inch cast-iron skillet in the oven to heat for at least 5 minutes - the pan has to be very hot for this to work. When it is well heated, add the remaining 2 Tbsp. of butter to melt and put the skillet back in the oven; the butter should be very hot buy not brown when you add the apples and the batter. Place the flour, milk, vanilla, salt and nutmeg in a blender and whirl until smooth. Remove the skillet from the oven, quickly arrange the warm apple slices over the melted butter, and pour the batter evenly over all. Bake for 15 min., reduce heat to 375° and bake 10 minutes longer. The pancake will puff and climb up the sides of the pan. Sprinkle with confectioner's sugar, then cut in wedges and serve with maple syrup.

Fresh Broccoli Soup in Bread Bowls

Round sour dough bread loaves, halved
1/2 pound Broccoli, fresh
1/4 cup Onion, chopped
1/4 cup Margarine
1/2 cup Flour
3 cups Water
4 tsp. Chicken Bouillon granules
2 cups Milk
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 cup Sharp Cheddar Cheese, shredded

Steam broccoli in small amount of salted water for 10 minutes or until crisp-tender; coarsely chop. In large saucepan, sauté onion in margarine until tender, but not brown. Blend in flour. Add water, chicken bouillon, milk, and Worcestershire sauce. Cook and stir until mixture slightly thickens. Add chopped broccoli. Bring to boiling and stir in shredded cheese until melted. Serve soup in individual hollowed out bread loaf halves. Leftover soup freezes well.

Herbed Roast Chicken

1/2 cup Dry white wine
1 Lemon (juice of)
1 tsp. garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. Dried oregano
4 lbs. Chicken, quartered
1/2 cup Olive oil
1/2 cup Tomato sauce
1 Onion, minced
1 Green pepper, minced
1/2 tsp. Garlic powder
1/2 tsp. Cumin

In a shallow dish combine wine, lemon juice, garlic, 1 /4 teaspoon oregano and pinch of salt. Add chicken, turning to coat well and marinate for 1 hour. Preheat oven to 350°. In a saucepan combine remaining ingredients and 1/4 teaspoon oregano and bring to a simmer. Cook for 15 minutes. Put chicken in a baking dish and top with sauce. Bake for 1-1/2 hours, or until done.

Cucumber Soup with Lemon-Grass and Spinach

2 Tbsp.Unsalted Butter
2 Ribs Celery, strings removed; chopped
1 small Onion, minced
2 stalks fresh Lemongrass, tender middle chopped
2 medium Cucumbers, peeled & seeded - chopped
2 cups Chicken stock or broth
1 1/2 cups Spinach leaves
1/4 cup Fresh Cilantro leaves
3 Tbsp. Whipping cream
fresh ground Black Pepper to taste

Melt butter in a large saucepan. Add celery, onion and lemongrass. Cook gently until onion is tender, 15 minutes. Add cucumbers and stock. Heat to a boil; reduce heat, cover and simmer until cucumber is tender, 10 minutes. Strain solids from liquid, reserving both. Pureé solids with spinach and cilantro in a blender or food processor. Add reserved liquid, cream, salt and pepper; mix until smooth. Serve warm or chilled.
Makes 4 ~ 1 1/2 cup servings

GooseBerry Fool

4 cups Gooseberries
1/4 cup Water
2 cups Sugar
Whipped cream

Cook gooseberries in water until done (or you may use the equivalent of canned gooseberries). Mash gooseberries in blender or food processor. Beat sugar into hot gooseberries. When cold, mix with stiffly whipped cream and pour into sherbet glasses for serving.

Fresh Herb Soup

1 Tbsp. Butter or margarine, unsalted
2 Tbsp. Fresh chives, minced
2 Tbsp. Fresh chervil, minced
2 Tbsp. Lemon sorrel leaves, minced
2 tsp.Fresh tarragon, minced
1 cup Celery ribs -- finely chopped
4 cups Vegetable broth
Salt and Pepper
1 pinch Sugar
4 slices Whole wheat bread , toasted
1 dash Freshly ground nutmeg
Grated cheddar cheese

Melt the butter over medium heat in a large heavy pot. Add the herbs and celery and cook, stirring, until wilted and soft, about 3 minutes. Add the broth, salt, pepper, and sugar. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes. Place a slice of toast in each soup bowl and pour the soup over. Dust with nutmeg and sprinkle with grated cheese.

Orange Honey Butter

2 Tbsp. Grated Orange Rind
3 Tbsp. Powdered Sugar
1/2 cup Unsalted Butter, at room temperature
1 Tbsp. honey

Combine the orange rind, powdered sugar, butter and honey in a small bowl and blend until well mixed. Chill slightly and serve with scones or biscuits.

Herbal Lemon Cookies

1 cup Butter or margarine
2 cups Sugar, divided
2 large Eggs
1 tsp. Vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups Flour
2 tsp. Baking powder
1/4 tsp. Salt
1/3 cup Lemon Grass / Lemon Balm / Lemon Basil - chopped

Cream the butter and 1-3/4 cups sugar. Add the eggs and vanilla. Beat well. Combine the flour, baking powder, salt, and herbs. Add to the creamed mixture and mix. Drop dough by teaspoonfuls, 3 inches apart, on a greased cookie sheet. Flatten slightly with a fork or cup bottom. Sprinkle lightly with the remaining sugar. Bake at 350° for 8 to 10 minutes or until barely browned. Cool slightly, then remove to a rack.

Metheglin

5 plbs. of honey
1 gallon of water
1 lemon
1 sprig of rosemary
1 sprig of balm
3/4 oz. of yeast

Simmer the herbs and thinly sliced lemon rind for twenty minutes in the gallon of water. Strain the liquid and pour onto the honey, stirring well. When lukewarm, add the juice of the lemon and the yeast. Cover and leave for twenty-four hours, then stir and leave in a warm place until fermentation ceases. Strain the meade into bottles and keep them in a cool, dark place for one year.

ButterMilk Scones

3 cups Flour
1/3 cup Sugar
2 1/2 tsp. Baking Powder
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
3/4 tsp Salt
2 Tbsp Butter
1 cup Buttermilk
3/4 cup Currants
1 tsp Grated Orange Rind
1 Tbsp Heavy Cream
1/4 tsp Cinnamon
2 Tbsp Sugar

Preheat oven to 425°. Use an un-greased baking sheet. Combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a mixing bowl. Stir well with a fork to mix and fold air into batter. Add the butter and cut into the flour mixture, using a pastry blender or two knives, or work in, using your fingertips, until the mixture looks like fresh bread crumbs. Add the buttermilk, currants and orange rind. Mix only until the dry ingredients are moistened. Gather the dough into a ball and press so it holds together. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead lightly 12 times. Pat the dough into a circle 1/2-inch thick.

Glaze: In a small bowl combine the cream, cinnamon and sugar; stir to blend. Brush the dough with the glaze. Cut the dough into 18 pie-shaped pieces. Place the scones 1 inch apart on the baking sheet. Bake for about 12 minutes or until the tops are browned. Serve hot with Orange Honey Butter.

Zucchini Bread

3 eggs
1 Tbsp vanilla
2 cups sugar
1 cup oil
2 cups flour
2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 Tbsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp baking powder
2 medium, grated, unpeeled zucchini
1 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350°.In mixing bowl, beat eggs till frothy. Beat in sugar, oil & vanilla until thick & lemon colored. Sift in flour, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, & salt. Fold in zucchini & walnuts. Pour mixture in 2 greased & floured loaf pans. Bake at 350° for 1 hour.

Zucchini Walnut Toss

3 medium zucchini
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
1 Tbsp butter or margarine
4 Roma tomatoes, chopped
2 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese

Cut zucchini in half crosswise; cut each half into 6 spears. In large nonstick skillet over medium heat, spread walnuts into single layer. Cook, stirring constantly, for about 3-4 minutes, or until nuts are fragrant and start to brown. Immediately remove from pan; set aside. In same skillet over medium-high heat, melt butter. Add zucchini and cook, stirring constantly, until crisp-tender, about 4-5 minutes. Stir in tomatoes and toasted walnuts; cook just until heated through. Top with parmesan cheese.

Etiquette for Pagan and Wiccan Rituals: A Primer or, Attending Your First Pagan Ritual

 

Invited to a ritual by a Pagan/Wiccan friend? Simply curious and thinking about checking out a public ritual? Here are some tips on what to expect.

 

Public rituals:A ritual is considered public if it is advertised in a flyer or on a website. Rituals advertised on Internet email lists are usually public, and usually state clearly if they are not (e.g. "This ritual is only for those who have attended six or more sessions of our classes in Witchcraft"). Email/ call the organizers if you're not sure if it's okay for you to attend.

 

Organizers of public rituals usually plan for the "lowest common denominator," meaning someone who knows almost nothing about Paganism. This means they usually plan to explain what they are doing, and to make it fairly clear when you ought to participate and what you ought to do. Public rituals tend to be fairly scripted, and designated people usually have specific parts to play. This means that you, as an attendee, are unlikely to be called on to do anything other than what the rest of the group is doing. Still, you may feel more comfortable if you're familiar with the basic ritual outline below, and have an idea of what to expect.

 

Private Rituals:If you are invited to a private ritual (open only to friends, acquaintances, covenmates, etc.), you should ask the person who invited you to give you an idea of what will happen in the ritual, what you should bring, what you should wear, etc. Find out if there will be other new people there, or if you are the only guest. If you have physical disabilities or limited mobility, find out if there will be dancing/ movement, and if so, what accomodations can be made for you.

 

Ahead of Time

Clothing: Usually you have a pretty wide latitude as far as what to wear to ritual, assuming the flyer/ website/ your inviter doesn't specify (I went to a Winter Solstice ritual once where everyone was asked to wear white). At any given ritual, you will usually find people wearing all sorts of clothing, including jeans, robes, quasi-medieval garb, and regular "nice" clothing (sometimes more than one of these at once!). As a guest, it may be more respectful not to wear jeans, but don't feel you have to be super-formal; wear something loose and comfortable. You will probably stand out less in darker colors. Find out if the ritual is outdoor or indoor - you want to dress appropriately for the weather if it is outdoors.

 

What to Bring: Sometimes you will be asked for a small donation (this is usually stated on a flyer or announcement). Many Pagan rituals include a potluck portion, and you may be asked to bring something to eat or drink. There's always someone who brings a bag of potato chips, but people tend to prefer natural/ whole foods or homemade foods.

 

Timing:As a guest, it is polite to arrive on time. But be prepared for the ritual to start late, usually at least 15 minutes late and up to an hour late. This drives me crazy, but it's how things are. Most public rituals don't last longer than 1 1/2 - 2 hours, but I wouldn't schedule anything right afterward if you can help it. It may start late (and thus run later than expected), or it may take longer due to more people showing up than the organizers planned for, or the incense may set off a fire alarm (this happened in the middle of one public ritual I attended, and we all had to wait outside until the firefighters had cleared the building!). Or you may want to stay afterward to eat and/or talk with folks - people tend to linger after rituals. Of course, staying after to help the organizers clean up is a great way to endear yourself to them.

 

The Occasion: You may want to do a little research beforehand on what the ritual is celebrating. Most public rituals are held at one of the eight seasonal holidays, or on a new or full moon. Knowing the purpose of the ritual can give you an idea in advance of what the themes will be; for example, a Fall Equinox ritual may include giving thanks for the harvest. For more on the holidays, see here.

 

What Makes Pagan Ritual Different

If you are used to going to Christian or Jewish religious services, you may find Pagan ritual different. For one thing, you will probably not be given a book or sheet of paper to follow along. This means you will need to pay a little more attention to directions and cues from the ritual leaders. For another, rituals tend to be more participatory than many Jewish and Christian services (especially "high church" Catholic or Anglican services). This is especially true for private rituals, but even in public rituals you may be expected to learn a new song and join in the chant, dance around a fire, come to the center of the circle to write down your wishes for the coming year, and so on. People may speak about the meaning of the holiday, or there may be a meditation, but there will not be a sermon per se.

 

If you are a non-Pagan attendee at a Pagan ritual, be assured that no one will ask you to profess your beliefs publicly. Maybe you don't believe in the gods or goddesses invoked; maybe you think all this magic stuff is a bunch of hogwash; or maybe you find the ritual interesting in a detached, academic way, but don't really see what others get out of it. As long as you are respectful, you will be welcome in the circle. If you feel some ritual action is against your religious faith, you can politely step away or signal your wish to sit it out (e.g. politely shake your head when offered food, or move out of the circle when dancing begins).

 

(An interesting essay called Pagans and Christians: We Really Are Different describes some differences in belief between Pagans and Christians.)

 

What to Expect in Ritual

Following is a fairly standard/ generic ritual outline (the same one given in my Witchcraft 101 page) with notes about what to expect as an attendee. I'm focusing mainly on public rituals here because they are a common entry point for curious people; private rituals vary more widely, but much of what I say is applicable to many private rituals also.

 

- Cleansing/ purifying the space to set it apart for ritual.

This often involves actions like burning incense, sweeping with a broom, or sprinkling salt water. In most cases, the organizers will do some of this before anyone arrives. Sometimes you may be asked to pause at the door to the space and clear your mind or banish extraneous thoughts.

- Calling on the gods and the four elements:

The gods may be called on as individual gods ("I invoke Artemis and Apollo") or as archetypes ("I call on the Lord and Lady of the Hunt"). The four elements - earth, air, fire, and water - are each invoked at one of the four directions. At public rituals (and many private rituals), designated people will perform the invocations as the attendees watch and listen. Sometimes an invocation ends with a phrase like "Hail and welcome" which is then repeated by the whole group.

- Casting the circle to create sacred space:

The circle may be created by everyone holding hands together and focusing their intent (perhaps humming one note or singing a song together), or by one person drawing a physical circle with an athame (sacred knife), wand, staff, or their own hand. Once the circle has been cast, try to stay roughly within the circle as it was drawn (often the perimeters are marked by torches or altars at the four corners). If you need to leave during the ritual, ask someone to "cut a door" in the circle for you. They will draw the outline of a door with their hand or an athame, wand, or staff. If you return afterwards, someone will cut another door for you to re-enter.

- Statement of intention for the ritual:

Usually made by a priest/ess or leader of the ritual. Most intentions can be described by one of the following: Working magick toward a goal. Honoring a change in someone's life. Celebrating the cycle of seasons. The type of statement you are likely to hear in a public ritual goes something like this: "We gather together on this, the longest night of the year. This is the time when the sun has gone into darkness; but we know the light will return. Tonight, in this circle, we celebrate the light that lives in each of us." (Winter Solstice)

- The main body of the ritual

This could involve actions such as:- Performing ritual drama (acting out a seasonal story). Ritual drama is very common in public ritual (and occurs frequently in private rituals as well), especially at the eight seasonal holidays. For example, in the first public ritual I helped to organize, I took part in a ritual re-telling of the myth of Demeter and Persephone; I acted as Persephone, taking leave of her mother Demeter to go into the underworld. This was relevant to the season, as it was an Autumn Equinox ritual, at the time when the days start getting longer. Ritual drama usually does not demand any participation from ritual attendees; however, it is often followed by a more participatory action like the following two examples.- Raising energy by dancing and singing, usually dancing around in a circle while singing a short chant over and over. If you don't wish to participate in dancing, you may want to step backwards out of the circle of people (but try to stay within the "circle" of energy that was created earlier).- Other symbolic actions. These are usually general enough to apply to most people's lives, and are unlikely to offend the non-Pagan visitor. For example, ritual organizers might distribute twigs or small pieces of paper to all the attendees, who are then asked to concentrate on something they want to release in their lives. Then participants are asked to come to the center of the circle and throw the object into a fire, focusing on letting go. If you prefer not to engage in the particular action, it is usually simple to "pass" politely to the next person.

- Feasting:

Food and drink - often seasonal - are blessed and shared. This feels pretty familiar to most folks, as it is a ritual action occuring in many religions. Usually food and drink are passed around the circle, and you may hear the statements "May you never hunger" and "May you never thirst." Before or after eating, ritual leaders may "libate" - give offerings of food and drink for the gods. Sometimes, in larger public rituals, food and drink are shared after the ritual instead of during it.

- Saying farewell to the gods and the four elements, and closing the circle.

This is basically a reversal of the initial invocation and circle-casting, but it usually goes much more quickly! Leaders may end de-vocations with a statement like "Hail and farewell", which is usually repeated by the group. A saying commonly heard at the end of the ritual is the following: "The circle is open but unbroken. Merry meet and merry part and merry meet again." (This may be said or sung; group members often join in speaking or singing.)

Things NOT To Do

- Don't violate basic rules of respect and civility (e.g. laugh during a serious meditation, make fun of someone, talk loudly while someone else is talking, take more than your fair share of food/drink, and so on).- Do not touch tools or objects on an altar unless you are specifically invited to do so (e.g. "Everyone, take a piece of paper from the bowl on the altar.")- Don't leave the circle without asking someone to "cut a door" for you. It probably won't offend everyone, but it's an easy way to offend someone.- Do not preach your religious beliefs to others. Even if you believe everyone in the room is going to hell, you are still a guest at their ceremony and ought to remain respectful. Of course you can discuss your beliefs politely with others, but don't be persistent or judgmental.

 

(For a more humorous look at this topic, check out Ten Ways to Piss Off A Pagan.)

 

Final Note

I've tried to present a fairly standardized version here to help folks become comfortable with the basics. However, individual rituals may vary quite a bit from this outline. I encourage you to attend Pagan rituals with an open mind and a willingness to participate and learn. You can also check out this page for a more extensive set of guidelines: Attending Open Rituals. 

 

Grandmother Moon Rites

Peaceful greetings to all within our Goddess Sisterhood
I wanted to share my experiences at the Full Moon Ceremony I attended last night. Wouldn't it be nice to have a community of women, holding each others' intentions with the highest regards, and sharing in each others joys, passions, successes, disappointments, trials and tribulations? Wouldn't it be nice to have a community of like-minded women who bring honor and homage to each other, without prejudice or judgment, and with open arms and hearts? That is what I experienced last night when I was invited to my first Full Moon Ceremony led by a First Nation Elder that I was introduced to by one of the Grandmothers of the girls we work with.

The Grandmother Moon, our Sacred Earth Mother and all female relations in Nature are all revered in Native traditions. Indigenous people knew that everything in Creation has a spirit, and that we are connected to all of our relations in nature. As we reclaim our medicine gifts, it is important that we take this time to honor our Grandmother.
The Moon cycle is a gift to women, it is a time to cleanse herself mentally, physically, emotionally and spiritually. The Moon time is considered a time of power, second only to the ability of the Great Spirit to give life. That is how strong that power is.

Women can ask Grandmother Moon for direction in life, for wisdom, and for help for her female relations. Grandmother Moon can give her healing and balancing energy to women. When the Moon is full, a woman can do a ceremony to honor and seek guidance from Grandmother Moon. In this circle the leader of the group Ester welcomes ALL women no matter what their race, color, culture or creed.
These women only ceremonies are profoundly grounding, and spiritually and emotionally uplifting. Built on time-honored Native American traditions and I felt transported to a time of many moons ago ... when women came together to honor and replenish their spirit, their life and their very Being. As I sat within the glow of Grandmother Moon with 20 other women I had never met before we came together around an open fire to witness and experience the joy and power of the sacred feminine.
During this ceremony women gather to clear and cleanse of the body, mind and spirit. We were directed to bring a meter of yellow broadcloth and tobacco. We place some tobacco in the corner, fold it and smudge. The cloth is carried with us and cannot touch the ground. One Grandmother Moon is at her fullest we head outside to where a roaring fire had been created. We sit around the fire, share stories about our healing journey and focus on the fire while stating an intention to release all the things we no longer want in our lives—for ourselves, others or Mother Earth. We shared our stories, dreams, our past, present and future, releasing those things we no longer want to carry, and holding near the things we cherish.
After that part of the ceremony is complete each woman takes her prayer cloth, places some tobacco and sage in the fire, leaves the circle, faces the moon and prays for everything and everyone that we wish to ask support and healing for. When she returns the prayer cloth is placed in the fire and a brief a two syllable shout is called out to put energy into the request and give power to the cleansing power of the fire.

When every woman has gone through the process Ester beat her drum and sang songs of healing and blessings to Grandmother Moon. Afterwards we will share in a small feast. Within this ceremony we have to wear a long skirt because the skirts touch the ground in a circle honors women, the feminine energies within Grandmother Moon and our connection to her and the many blessings she offers to those who open to receive them.
Upon completion of the ceremony a food offering, tobacco and sage are placed in the fire. In Native traditions leaving food offerings for their clans, Mother Earth, the spirits, animals as an honoring for what we are given and to feed the energies and keep them strong.
We went in the house and shared a small "feast." Each women brings something as an offering and we stay together until everyone is finished eating and then it is fine to leave. We shook hands so complete an exchange of energy and rejoiced in the sense of unity we enjoyed. We stared out as strangers when we entered the circle and within the span of two hours we were part of a sisterhood filled with echoes from the past that will reach into all our present day and futures. 
I plan to attend as many of these ceremonies as possible. David and Ester's husband Willy hung out together and got to know each other and after the ceremony was over they came into the house and joined us in the feast. 
One of the girls we work with was there and of course her grandmother. So our growing sense of family between us is extending and so is our soul community connections with First Nations people. It is very affirming and reveals the possibilities for healing within different cultures when people open their hearts and minds and allow that process to occur. Our intention to come from a place of honor and respect for differences while working with cooperation and consensus is outworking even with the change at the health center and band council on the other reserve.
What we conceive and believe can be achieved if we give things enough time and don't give up before the miracle happens. 
I wish the we lived closer so we could hold our own full moon ceremony together. Oh well we can always hold our bonds close during the Full Moon to remind us of the special bonds we share with each other within our online communities.

You're related this beautifully, Coralie--yes, it most certainly be wonderful to join a community of women attending such a ceremony--I would love to attend such a sacred circle--except for one thing. I would have a problem with the concept of having to wear a skirt because I'm a woman. I don't even own a skirt, long, short, or otherwise. I wear slacks. I don't think Mother Moon cares in the least what I wear. Of course, I respect the beliefs of those who insist that this is a must for joining the circle--I just wouldn't be able to do it--it just wouldn't feel right to me because it would go against my own beliefs. It calls to mind the memory of women having to cover their heads in the Catholic church out of "respect" Men didn't have to cover their heads--only women. If it's a requirement that a woman must wear a skirt to something--I feel that it is her outer appearance that is important--not her inner persona--her beliefs.
I'm not so insensitive that I would be opposed to holding a certain item, or wearing something small, like a particular piece of jewelry--or something similar--even a shawl or neck scarf would be okay. But I would balk at the mandatory skirt, as I see it as a symbol of womanhood that has been forced upon us since way back when? Over the years, slacks have become more acceptable, but there are still places (or were awhile back) that require a woman to wear a skirt. Anyway, just my take on things. Thanks so much for sharing your experience in the Full Moon Ceremony--other than the skirt thing (and that's my own particular hang-up) I thought it sounded like a very beautiful and meaningful experience--Blessings to you and yours, dear Coralie--Love and Light, always, Dot

Initially I felt the same way...until I understood the spiritual significance of it. I am definitely a pants and boot kind of a gal too and in my daily life that is how I dress. However, I am committed to exploring the sacred teachings from all cultures and at this stage my commitment to opening to Feminine Divine within myself and others I strive to "get over myself" and explore other ways of doing things to avoid getting stuck in my own thinking.
When I understood that in this ceremony we come together in a circle, the fullness of the moon is a circle and all the gifts Grandmother Moon can give to those who are open to receiving them are circular, as is the fire that is dug into a circle. Sweat lodges are created in a circle and life itself is circular.
Babies in the womb grow into a circular baby bump and the skirt is a the same way. We honor all of these by opening ourselves and wearing a long skirt that touches the ground in yet another circle. I had a choice to make and either say to the Elder, "yes Ester I open my heart, body, mind and spirit and come into the sacred circle that I have been invited to or I can stick to my issues, snub my nose at your traditions and Grandmother Moon and lose the opportunity to experience something beyond my at times limiting beliefs...and I did. 
As I put my long flowing skirt on I felt and understood the significance of it at a deep level of my being. As I opened my whole self to the idea that the the circle, the moon, the fire and the sacred sharing were all part of ancient echos that were resonating into my life in present time. For me it felt immensely liberating to put on the skirt and recognize that the power to choose to learn and experience something new and beautiful was stronger than some of the ideas that fostered my feminist perspectives up until that point.
I actually enjoyed walking with the skirt and how if felt. It was good knowing how it also relates to the tee-pee in Native ways. The circular design grounds energy for those within it and that is the effect the skirt had for me. I felt the focus of the circle and how it reminds women how powerful we are. The skirt does not diminish our power but actually heightens awareness about the traditions and circles within all of life.
I came to a deeper understanding that they need to be included in our life so we can remind each other than woman wielded as much or equal power in many aboriginal cultures. Sadly, all too many women have forgotten that and it is part of my reason for feeling so passionate about awakening the Feminine Divine in modern thinking and respecting differences in all cultures, races, creeds, genders, religions and ideologies whether I agree or not. It is amazing how when we do that how much easier it is to find common ground.
David and I recently created a new blog because we are so committed to sharing these ideas with others and offering ideas on how we can respect differences and diversity while embracing our Oneness. Here is the link if you want to check it out.
http://exploring-neutral.blogspot.com/2012/01/celebrating-our-uniqu...
I appreciate and respect your views Dot and truly do understand where you are coming from. However, this experience was so spiritually significant for me in energetic ways I cannot fully explain because it was experiential rather than intellectual. If you feel you could not honor and respect the traditions as they have been passed down to the Elders through time then you would not be able to attend. My view on unity and oneness is always based on respect. That is of great importance to First Nation People because white people have diminished and disrespected their beliefs and traditions and that is why the chasm exists between our cultures. I know that I was invited because both David and I have continued to walk our talk with the First Nations People we work with and they see and feel our genuine honoring of their ways whether we agree with all of them or not. Had they not believed that I never would have been invited to attend. When Ester told me about wearing the skirt had I said, "I won't do that because of my beliefs" I know she would have respected them...but it would reveal that I did not respect the purpose and intention of the ceremony and my energy would not have complimented others who were gathering with the same focus. Even if she has allowed me to attend I would be showing myself for a less than respectful white person and that is not where I chose to come from. 
We may not agree but when we have the honor of being invited to participate I have no problem in walking in their moccasins for awhile to see how it feels and I am so glad I did. It opened me up and titled my kaleidoscopic view of things and now I truly appreciate the symbolism and energy within the experience as a whole and I will be putting my skirt on again to embrace the energy within the circle on March 8 during the next full moon.

I realize this is a lengthy response but here is another piece of information on the traditional Native beliefs and the importance of understanding "Circles"
You have noticed that everything an Indian does in a circle,
and that is because the Power of the World always works in circles,
and everything and everything tries to be round.
In the old days all our power came to us from the sacred hoop
of the nation and so long as the hoop was unbroken the people
flourished. The flowering tree was the living center of the hoop,
and the circle of the four quarters nourished it. The east gave peace
and light, the south gave warmth, the west gave rain and the north
with its cold and mighty wind gave strength and endurance. This
knowledge came to us from the outer world with our religion.
Everything the power of the world does is done in a circle.
The sky is round and I have heard that the earth is round like a ball
and so are all the stars. The wind, in its greatest power, whirls.
Birds make their nests in circles, for theirs is the same religion as ours.
The sun comes forth and goes down again in a circle. The moon
does the same and both are round. Even the seasons form a great
circle in their changing and always come back again to where they were.
The life of a all people is a circle from childhood to childhood, and so it is
in everything where power moves. Our teepees were round like the
nests of birds, and these were always set in a circle, the nation's hoop,
a nest of many nests, where the Great Spirit meant for us to hatch our children. 
Women wear skirts to celebrate their special and powerful connection to Mother Earth and Grandmother Moon. When they gather in sacred sharing circles and embrace their individual and collective powers men cannot participate because these ceremonies are sacred gathering times where women are in their element...and in their places of power. 
Black Elk, Holy Man of the Oglala Sioux 1863-1950

Grandmother Moon Rites

Peaceful greetings to all within our Goddess Sisterhood
I wanted to share my experiences at the Full Moon Ceremony I attended last night. Wouldn't it be nice to have a community of women, holding each others' intentions with the highest regards, and sharing in each others joys, passions, successes, disappointments, trials and tribulations? Wouldn't it be nice to have a community of like-minded women who bring honor and homage to each other, without prejudice or judgment, and with open arms and hearts? That is what I experienced last night when I was invited to my first Full Moon Ceremony led by a First Nation Elder that I was introduced to by one of the Grandmothers of the girls we work with.

The Grandmother Moon, our Sacred Earth Mother and all female relations in Nature are all revered in Native traditions. Indigenous people knew that everything in Creation has a spirit, and that we are connected to all of our relations in nature. As we reclaim our medicine gifts, it is important that we take this time to honor our Grandmother.
The Moon cycle is a gift to women, it is a time to cleanse herself mentally, physically, emotionally and spiritually. The Moon time is considered a time of power, second only to the ability of the Great Spirit to give life. That is how strong that power is.

Women can ask Grandmother Moon for direction in life, for wisdom, and for help for her female relations. Grandmother Moon can give her healing and balancing energy to women. When the Moon is full, a woman can do a ceremony to honor and seek guidance from Grandmother Moon. In this circle the leader of the group Ester welcomes ALL women no matter what their race, color, culture or creed.
These women only ceremonies are profoundly grounding, and spiritually and emotionally uplifting. Built on time-honored Native American traditions and I felt transported to a time of many moons ago ... when women came together to honor and replenish their spirit, their life and their very Being. As I sat within the glow of Grandmother Moon with 20 other women I had never met before we came together around an open fire to witness and experience the joy and power of the sacred feminine.
During this ceremony women gather to clear and cleanse of the body, mind and spirit. We were directed to bring a meter of yellow broadcloth and tobacco. We place some tobacco in the corner, fold it and smudge. The cloth is carried with us and cannot touch the ground. One Grandmother Moon is at her fullest we head outside to where a roaring fire had been created. We sit around the fire, share stories about our healing journey and focus on the fire while stating an intention to release all the things we no longer want in our lives—for ourselves, others or Mother Earth. We shared our stories, dreams, our past, present and future, releasing those things we no longer want to carry, and holding near the things we cherish.
After that part of the ceremony is complete each woman takes her prayer cloth, places some tobacco and sage in the fire, leaves the circle, faces the moon and prays for everything and everyone that we wish to ask support and healing for. When she returns the prayer cloth is placed in the fire and a brief a two syllable shout is called out to put energy into the request and give power to the cleansing power of the fire.

When every woman has gone through the process Ester beat her drum and sang songs of healing and blessings to Grandmother Moon. Afterwards we will share in a small feast. Within this ceremony we have to wear a long skirt because the skirts touch the ground in a circle honors women, the feminine energies within Grandmother Moon and our connection to her and the many blessings she offers to those who open to receive them.
Upon completion of the ceremony a food offering, tobacco and sage are placed in the fire. In Native traditions leaving food offerings for their clans, Mother Earth, the spirits, animals as an honoring for what we are given and to feed the energies and keep them strong.
We went in the house and shared a small "feast." Each women brings something as an offering and we stay together until everyone is finished eating and then it is fine to leave. We shook hands so complete an exchange of energy and rejoiced in the sense of unity we enjoyed. We stared out as strangers when we entered the circle and within the span of two hours we were part of a sisterhood filled with echoes from the past that will reach into all our present day and futures. 
I plan to attend as many of these ceremonies as possible. David and Ester's husband Willy hung out together and got to know each other and after the ceremony was over they came into the house and joined us in the feast. 
One of the girls we work with was there and of course her grandmother. So our growing sense of family between us is extending and so is our soul community connections with First Nations people. It is very affirming and reveals the possibilities for healing within different cultures when people open their hearts and minds and allow that process to occur. Our intention to come from a place of honor and respect for differences while working with cooperation and consensus is outworking even with the change at the health center and band council on the other reserve.
What we conceive and believe can be achieved if we give things enough time and don't give up before the miracle happens. 
I wish the we lived closer so we could hold our own full moon ceremony together. Oh well we can always hold our bonds close during the Full Moon to remind us of the special bonds we share with each other within our online communities.

You're related this beautifully, Coralie--yes, it most certainly be wonderful to join a community of women attending such a ceremony--I would love to attend such a sacred circle--except for one thing. I would have a problem with the concept of having to wear a skirt because I'm a woman. I don't even own a skirt, long, short, or otherwise. I wear slacks. I don't think Mother Moon cares in the least what I wear. Of course, I respect the beliefs of those who insist that this is a must for joining the circle--I just wouldn't be able to do it--it just wouldn't feel right to me because it would go against my own beliefs. It calls to mind the memory of women having to cover their heads in the Catholic church out of "respect" Men didn't have to cover their heads--only women. If it's a requirement that a woman must wear a skirt to something--I feel that it is her outer appearance that is important--not her inner persona--her beliefs.
I'm not so insensitive that I would be opposed to holding a certain item, or wearing something small, like a particular piece of jewelry--or something similar--even a shawl or neck scarf would be okay. But I would balk at the mandatory skirt, as I see it as a symbol of womanhood that has been forced upon us since way back when? Over the years, slacks have become more acceptable, but there are still places (or were awhile back) that require a woman to wear a skirt. Anyway, just my take on things. Thanks so much for sharing your experience in the Full Moon Ceremony--other than the skirt thing (and that's my own particular hang-up) I thought it sounded like a very beautiful and meaningful experience--Blessings to you and yours, dear Coralie--Love and Light, always, Dot

Initially I felt the same way...until I understood the spiritual significance of it. I am definitely a pants and boot kind of a gal too and in my daily life that is how I dress. However, I am committed to exploring the sacred teachings from all cultures and at this stage my commitment to opening to Feminine Divine within myself and others I strive to "get over myself" and explore other ways of doing things to avoid getting stuck in my own thinking.
When I understood that in this ceremony we come together in a circle, the fullness of the moon is a circle and all the gifts Grandmother Moon can give to those who are open to receiving them are circular, as is the fire that is dug into a circle. Sweat lodges are created in a circle and life itself is circular.
Babies in the womb grow into a circular baby bump and the skirt is a the same way. We honor all of these by opening ourselves and wearing a long skirt that touches the ground in yet another circle. I had a choice to make and either say to the Elder, "yes Ester I open my heart, body, mind and spirit and come into the sacred circle that I have been invited to or I can stick to my issues, snub my nose at your traditions and Grandmother Moon and lose the opportunity to experience something beyond my at times limiting beliefs...and I did. 
As I put my long flowing skirt on I felt and understood the significance of it at a deep level of my being. As I opened my whole self to the idea that the the circle, the moon, the fire and the sacred sharing were all part of ancient echos that were resonating into my life in present time. For me it felt immensely liberating to put on the skirt and recognize that the power to choose to learn and experience something new and beautiful was stronger than some of the ideas that fostered my feminist perspectives up until that point.
I actually enjoyed walking with the skirt and how if felt. It was good knowing how it also relates to the tee-pee in Native ways. The circular design grounds energy for those within it and that is the effect the skirt had for me. I felt the focus of the circle and how it reminds women how powerful we are. The skirt does not diminish our power but actually heightens awareness about the traditions and circles within all of life.
I came to a deeper understanding that they need to be included in our life so we can remind each other than woman wielded as much or equal power in many aboriginal cultures. Sadly, all too many women have forgotten that and it is part of my reason for feeling so passionate about awakening the Feminine Divine in modern thinking and respecting differences in all cultures, races, creeds, genders, religions and ideologies whether I agree or not. It is amazing how when we do that how much easier it is to find common ground.
David and I recently created a new blog because we are so committed to sharing these ideas with others and offering ideas on how we can respect differences and diversity while embracing our Oneness. Here is the link if you want to check it out.
http://exploring-neutral.blogspot.com/2012/01/celebrating-our-uniqu...
I appreciate and respect your views Dot and truly do understand where you are coming from. However, this experience was so spiritually significant for me in energetic ways I cannot fully explain because it was experiential rather than intellectual. If you feel you could not honor and respect the traditions as they have been passed down to the Elders through time then you would not be able to attend. My view on unity and oneness is always based on respect. That is of great importance to First Nation People because white people have diminished and disrespected their beliefs and traditions and that is why the chasm exists between our cultures. I know that I was invited because both David and I have continued to walk our talk with the First Nations People we work with and they see and feel our genuine honoring of their ways whether we agree with all of them or not. Had they not believed that I never would have been invited to attend. When Ester told me about wearing the skirt had I said, "I won't do that because of my beliefs" I know she would have respected them...but it would reveal that I did not respect the purpose and intention of the ceremony and my energy would not have complimented others who were gathering with the same focus. Even if she has allowed me to attend I would be showing myself for a less than respectful white person and that is not where I chose to come from. 
We may not agree but when we have the honor of being invited to participate I have no problem in walking in their moccasins for awhile to see how it feels and I am so glad I did. It opened me up and titled my kaleidoscopic view of things and now I truly appreciate the symbolism and energy within the experience as a whole and I will be putting my skirt on again to embrace the energy within the circle on March 8 during the next full moon.

I realize this is a lengthy response but here is another piece of information on the traditional Native beliefs and the importance of understanding "Circles"
You have noticed that everything an Indian does in a circle,
and that is because the Power of the World always works in circles,
and everything and everything tries to be round.
In the old days all our power came to us from the sacred hoop
of the nation and so long as the hoop was unbroken the people
flourished. The flowering tree was the living center of the hoop,
and the circle of the four quarters nourished it. The east gave peace
and light, the south gave warmth, the west gave rain and the north
with its cold and mighty wind gave strength and endurance. This
knowledge came to us from the outer world with our religion.
Everything the power of the world does is done in a circle.
The sky is round and I have heard that the earth is round like a ball
and so are all the stars. The wind, in its greatest power, whirls.
Birds make their nests in circles, for theirs is the same religion as ours.
The sun comes forth and goes down again in a circle. The moon
does the same and both are round. Even the seasons form a great
circle in their changing and always come back again to where they were.
The life of a all people is a circle from childhood to childhood, and so it is
in everything where power moves. Our teepees were round like the
nests of birds, and these were always set in a circle, the nation's hoop,
a nest of many nests, where the Great Spirit meant for us to hatch our children. 
Women wear skirts to celebrate their special and powerful connection to Mother Earth and Grandmother Moon. When they gather in sacred sharing circles and embrace their individual and collective powers men cannot participate because these ceremonies are sacred gathering times where women are in their element...and in their places of power. 
Black Elk, Holy Man of the Oglala Sioux 1863-1950

Fire Ceremony in Cherokee: (gata gauwatlunehi)

 

WHAT IS A FIRE CEREMONY?

A fire ceremony is a Native American practice that is usually performed every full moon. You do not have to wait for a full moon in order to do a fire ceremony. Fire Ceremonies are wonderful during a New Moon, when you want to introduce newness into your Life. This Native American ritual is easy, simple and an awe-inspiring event.

I often do a fire ceremony by myself during the New Moon (probably every other month) and I've done them many times with friends in the backyard where we dug a large pit in the ground in order to build a safe fire. I've also used a large clay pot, a campfire, a bonfire or an old barbecue grill.

HOW IS A FIRE CEREMONY PERFORMED?

Each of us bring something to burn that we would like to rid from our past (in Full Moon) or a prayer request of something new (in New Moon), that will burn, turn to smoke and release into the ethers. This allows the past energy to move along to its highest spiritual progression path and the new prayer request to move along to its highest spiritual progression path. We may bring pictures, drawings, or intentions written on a piece of paper for the past or the newness. For the past, after we have burned and released it, then we have something prepared that is written down on a clean sheet of paper. This would be something new that we would like to call forth from God. For the newness, the prayer request is then burned and released into the ethers thereby replacing the past.

We form a circle around the fire and one by one we call in support from Divine Sources that give us peace. E.g. - God, Jesus, Creator, the Blessed Virgin Mother, Spirit, the Universe, the Archangels, the Saints that we may feel closest to, Guardian Angels, etc. We start with a prayer, and end with a prayer that is coupled with thanksgiving that our prayers and intentions have already been answered.

Keep in mind, no one is obligated to speak during a Fire Ceremony. Anyone can participate without stating what they are releasing or calling forth.

After we have called in our Divine Source we place into the fire our pictures, drawings and intended release of the past. Once these things have burned to smoke and ash, we then place into the fire what we have written on clean sheet of paper. This would be what we desire to replace those old energies with and call in new.

The things we address from our past or call into our future can be shared with the group or kept to ourselves as we go through the Fire Ceremony.

YOU WILL NEED ANY OR ALL OF THE FOLLOWING

A fire pit or fire place where you can safely burn a fire. A barbecue pit or fireproof pot works well too. If you live in an apartment, it is best to find a place outdoors where you can safely burn a fire.
A bucket filled with water or a water hose to put the fire out after the ceremony.
Items such as a drawing, picture or written intentions that you would like to release from your past.
Anything else that you feel would serve you that need to be released.
In strict Native American custom - the burning of sage, sweetgrass or tobacco is burned along with the past, which is given as an offering. When the smoke rises up into the ethers and is carried away to God there should be a quiet or meditative break in order to embrace a new awareness of transformation in your life. It is also symbolic that you can offer up a bit of food you wanted and only ate half of so that you could offer the other half in thanks.

THE VALUE OF IMAGERY

Do not minimize the value of imagery in Native American ceremony. The Spirit of God is real. This is a way of demonstrating our gratefulness and thanksgiving to God. When we pray to our Source and Supply who is God; He can, will and does affect our lives. So honoring Him and showing Him respect is part of this ceremony.

After your fire gets going, each person may contribute to the prayer and then the items are offered to the fire. Tell God and all the Divine Spirits that you have called forth that you offer these things in thanksgiving. Meditate and feel the presence of God all around you. Singing praise, playing peaceful music either through tapes or instruments may also be used.

A TIME FOR CELEBRATION

You can sing, dance and enjoy yourself. Experience a feeling of thanksgiving that your prayers are already answered. This is a time of celebration.

Every Divine Source you called in is present, so give thanks and believe you have already received.

Ritual*

In the sky, a big, fat Moon looms; her light dripping down upon a clearing in the forest. In the center of the clearing a fire blazes in a stone pit, and around this pit, dancing wildly to the rhythm of drums, are people wearing masks.

or....

The room fills with the fragrant smoke of incense and the flickering light of many candles. On the floor a group of people sit in a circle holding hands. Quietly, the sound of a drum begins to resound throughout the room; the sound of a heartbeat.

or....

A group of drummers gather off to the side of the festival space and begin beating out a dancing rhythm. Into the center of the space moves a woman wearing veils and tinkling bells. She begins moving to the beating rhythm, her body undulating, her hands beckoning, her eyes peeking over a shimmering veil that covers the rest of her face.
The above, and variations on theme, were the scenes described by almost everyone to whom I asked, "What is ritual drumming, and how can it be used?"

My first experience with ritual drumming was in a Native American continual heartbeat rhythm, which was explained as being a connecting vibration to the Great Spirit of all life. The "medicine" drum, or "medicine" rattle, is used in many Native American ceremonies as a telephone line between human beings and god. The different rhythms are believed to communicate the essence of what we are trying to say.

Ritual drumming is not exclusively used by Native Americans, but in almost every endogenous tradition worldwide. More often then not, drumming is used to bring on an altered state of awareness in much the same way a hallucinogenic drug is used. A constant drumming can force the mind to cross through an inner threshold into another realm of examining, or experiencing, life for that moment in time. Thus, using drums as a transcendental aid in such ceremonies as the shamanic journey, became a reliable and common way of altering consciousness by native tribal shamans.

Vibration is said to be the foundation upon which the physical manifests. When the drum is used as a visionary tool to alter one's reality, a new avenue for personal expression is opened.

Visions can teach us how to relate to an aspect of our personality that is very similar to, let's say, those characteristics associated to a deer. When the drum is used for visioning, it can help the individual free the trapped deer that dwells within, and bring its energy, or "medicine", to the surface of their consciousness. When this freeing occurs, many people experience the desire to become the full energy of their inner animal. This experience is demonstrated when the person, in their visioning, actually feels that they are this animal and stands up to physically move with, or dance, the energy of this new-found part of their personality.

In an ancient shamanic ceremony called Guedra that was performed by the women's society in Morocco, drums were used to hold the energy around the participants in the ceremony; creating a circle of vibration around the group in much the same way as the sacred circles which are cast in Wiccan and High Magick circles. As long as the drum rhythm was played, the circle was cast. When the ceremony ended, the drums would stop and the energy released; the circle would therefore, be open and the ritual ended.

I use drums quite extensively in my circles for grounding and centering, and quiet meditation times by playing a simple heartbeat rhythm. I equate this drumbeat to the Mother's heartbeat, to Gaia's heartbeat, to our own heartbeat, to the one heartbeat of all life. A heart that continually beats in all living things; the living heartbeat vibration of life. For Full Moon celebrations, the added rhythms of drumming helps me move deeper into my celebration of life, freeing my inhibitions and allowing me to dance under the full light and become the essence of that light in the darkness.

Whether in quiet times or wild jubilation, the vibrations that are created by a beating drum can greatly enhance the energy, alter the mental facilities of the participants, and produce vision. Just recently, I experimented with ritual drumming during a personal past-life regression. The need for this past-life regression came during the time I was writing my fourth book, THE ORAL FAERY TRADITION OF CELTIC -- my working titled, but published as Faery Wicca, Book 1 -- always felt connected to Ireland because of my Irish heritage on my mother's side of the family, and the realm of Faery has always attracted me, but during the course of writing the book, I began to experience a deep knowing that I truly had lived in Ireland at one time. Because I am not completely sure what reincarnation is and whether or not we do have past-lives, I decided to keep an open mind and try doing a regression using a drum. The following story is taken from the recording produced during my attempt to delve into a possible past-life.

The morning is gray, shrouded from the solar rays, allowing me to journey within the lunar realm; inner realm. Jack and I share breakfast, coffee and oatmeal. I read a book on the lunar aspects of astrology while he reads the Sports page of the LA Times. I am anxious to begin, but patiently await the passage of the morning time which we always share before rushing off into our respective daily activities.

The Moon has moved into Pisces during the night and this will be part of the energy surrounding my ceremony. I like the way the energy feels because it is "psychic" energy, going with-in energy, and I know I will be able to reach my desired destination.

As Jack takes his morning shower, I start setting up the altar; it is to be a Faery altar with only Faery tools of power. I take the St. John's Wort flower essence. As Jack prepares to leave, I walk with him to the front door and decide to take a stroll in the garden.

"Ah, going for your morning walk?" he teases and closes the gate behind him. He sticks his tongue through a knothole in the fence, then makes a sound. We laugh. I begin my rounds at the flowerbed dedicated to Ishtar.

In the distance I can hear Jack's car start and know he has departed. Here and there I stop to admire the beauty of the garden; the dahlia, deep red; the pink frilly rose blossoms; Faery Rath; white sweet¬pea-like blossoms of the Chinese pea pods; bergamot growth; stop to toss the petals air-drying in baskets on the outside Temple altar; the coyote hind-leg bone catches my attention; rock-rose; notice that the California poppy petals have dropped to the ground; wonder if I should thin-out the green bean seedlings now that they've grown to a substantial size and notice the purple blossoms on them; the chamomile will be ready to harvest soon - mustn't forget to send a batch off to Starhawk as she requested; lavender looking a little yellow - maybe getting too much water; ah, the glads are starting to bloom; stoop and pluck a gardenia flower, hold it up to my nose and take a deep in-breath; all is well in the garden; things grow good in the garden; head towards the door; must water the marigold and basil pots on picnic table today - check; exit garden; enter house.

Before the altar I sit. The pink candle is lit and the charcoal. I arrange the other items around the altar, and as the charcoal begins to turn gray, I place a drop of the Faery Oil onto it. As the smoke curls gray and white, I run my arms through it and draw it over my head and into my heart to smudge self and body. With wand crystal in hand I travel to each quarter and cast circle.

"The air that is her breath; the fire that is her spirit; the water that center. The circle is cast. I am between the worlds."

In my left hand I pick up the two pence Eire coin and anoint both sides with a drop of the holy water from Bridget's Well. Next, a drop of Faery Oil is applied to my left wrist, against which I rub my right wrist. As I do this I am thinking of my spirit energy; consecrating it to be receptive and giving. Applying another drop to the first fingertip of my right hand, I trace the Celtic cross on my forehead.

"For awakening," I whisper and wonder is this Sinend anointing me?

Onto the gray charcoal, I dump the Faery Incense. Picking up the bell, I intone it every four beats as I sing the invocation to the Faery Queen. After the invocation I pick up my dumbec drum and say to the spirit realm,

"I go on my Journey now Queen Fay, to remember Sinend, the Cunning Woman. To awaken the Sinend and Cunning Woman of Kisma. I ask your assistance as I go on this Journey."

Dum ca tek ca-tek-ca, dum ca tek ca-tek-ca, dum ca tek ca-tek-tek, dum ca tek ca-tek-tek.

I close my eyes and began breathing, centering myself. Letting the thoughts come and go; being sidetracked, releasing the sidetrack and breathing on into center. The drumming fills my ears and I focus on the rhythm and breathe with the rhythm. Feeling here, feeling stilled, feeling ready.

My Inner Guide begins to direct: Let your focus drop inside, breath inside, breath to center, breath to Earth. Focus on Earth, submerge your energy roots into Mother Earth. My energy intensifies. My mind swirls deeper, deeper, deeper into her core and rise the energy, rise the energy, rise energy. Up my roots, into yoni rises this energy. With one full breath, it rises to crown. My spine straightens. Head comes upright.

Crown releases and shines and connects with solar light. Branches reach-up and feel the light connection and sweep down around you to touch the Earth; around you now, womb of energy, of light energy. I breathe and my Shaman's Eye pops and is filled with a solar light. I can see the solar light shining inside - ah, the St. John's Wort is activated.

Marry solar and lunar; light and dark. Channel light energy through you and into core of Mother. Connect. Breath release and focus rushes through my body and empties into the Earth. Ah, I am connected; very complete. I feel my Guide smile.

Step in elevator. I do and turn to the buttons and push "basement". The doors close and the movement is downward. Relax. I will guide you. I will ask you the necessary questions. Just let go and journey. We know how to do this. We can do this. We will do this. I breath a great big release of air out of my lungs. I squarely face the door. The area in the elevator is predominantly dark.

The elevator doors slide open and I step out into what at first seems the lobby hallway before the swimming pool in the Bethesda, Maryland, Pook's Hill Marriott. Follow the light. Pinhole of light. Flash! Then...

Dum ca dum-dum, dum ca dum-dum, dum ca dum-dum, dum ca dum-dum.

Look at your feet. Grass. Ladyslipper? I've never seen Ladyslipper before so I'm not sure I'm really seeing that, it's just that that's what I think is in the grass.

Then lift one up.

Oh. Barefoot. It's my right foot. Wait a minute. There's a design on my foot. I think it's henna. Let's see, hum, it begins at the ankle and crosses the top of my foot and ends at my big toe. It's a serpent! I'm looking around the grass and thinking, but there are no serpents in Ireland! We are the serpents! WE ARE SERPENTS! I'm not so sure why I feel so strongly about that. Yes, I do.

Look up your legs.

Clothe. A skirt; a little ragged. Well, it isn't my best dress, I can tell you that because I'm out in the forest gathering herbs. Higher. A cape or cloak around me. No hood. Dull green color. I am wearing no jewelry.

Look at your hands.

Dum-ca-dum, dum-ca-dum, dum-ca-dum, dum-ca-dum.

I can't see anything.

See your hand.

Right hand. Fingernails. They're long, but I've chipped the pinky fingernail pulling up the roots. Left hand. It's touching my chest. I've got something around my neck, under my clothes. I think its some kind of necklace or bag.

Look at it.

I'm trying to pull it out, but I've got something on my back. It's a bundle.

Remove the bundle.

Oh, my! It's a baby. The bundle is a baby. Oh, look at his beauty. Oh, look at his tiny body. I've opened up the swaddling wrap and he's laying on it on the grass and he's wearing a little white dress. His hair is so red. And he's so fair skinned. His little legs are kicking out and his arms are flinging about.

Crying. Crying. I... he's hungry. He's my child. I lift him to my breast and I am shocked by the color of his eyes. They are cloudy blue, see-through blue, white-blue. They frighten me. I sense he--

How old are you.

Thirteen. No, twenty-three. I was thirteen when I had menarche. At thirteen it was suggested I conceive, but I ran from the men. I did not want a man to touch me. I am old for having a first child, but it was during the ceremony, during the first waning night that I danced and felt the energy explode in me and pulled my dress away from breasts and allowed them to be seen. The fire raged around me. My head was spinning. I felt as if I was swimming, sinking. Lost in the dancing figures around me; lost in the chaos of the releasing of the new tide. The darkness had begun to swallow us and we were celebrating the approach of Lughnasadh. He mounted me and I opened to receive him.

What's the necklace around your neck?

Let me lay my child down. A pouch made out of Cervus-megaceros. Inside it is a braid of red and black hair that is fastened through a holed spiral shell. Inside the shell is the Chuisheag grass. This was given me at my initiation; for at La Baal Tine I was the first to draw the Sgaith-an-tobar that year.

Who are you?

Dum dum dum dum dum dum dum dum dum dum

I am Cunning Woman. I am story woman. I am healer. I am strong woman. I am Fay. I am this land. I am ready to tell my sgeal. I am ready!

The regression continued on for some time after this. I relived, or visioned scenes from the age of five until my death in my late twenties. When I woke from the regression, I was a bit disoriented and surprised to find that I was still sitting in my living room. I looked down at the Faery altar and then out the window into the garden that stood boldly outside ¬ a witness that Sinend, the Cunning Woman, Kisma now lived in the twentieth century.

Sometime during the course of the regression the beating of the drum completely disappeared, for when I came out of it, my hands were resting in my lap and the drum had actually slipped off my lap and was resting on its side. Powerful!

What is ritual drumming, and how can it be used? Ritual drumming is a tool we can use to alter our atmospheres and consciousness during sacred ceremonies, meditations, psycho-therapy, wild celebrations, and, as I have recently found out, even as an aid to performing a past-life regression. The usage of drumming is open to exploration. In your attempts to connect with the Great Spirit, or your Higher Self, may your drumming heartbeat provide you with a rich rhythm of life.

~Elder Airwolf~

[Ya Ta Say Tribal Families~ Fire Ceremony in Cherokee: (gata gauwatlunehi) WHAT IS A FIRE CEREMONY? A fire ceremony is a Native American practice that is usually performed every full moon. You do not have to wait for a full moon in order to do a fire ceremony. Fire Ceremonies are wonderful during a New Moon, when you want to introduce newness into your Life. This Native American ritual is easy, simple and an awe-inspiring event. I often do a fire ceremony by myself during the New Moon (probably every other month) and I've done them many times with friends in the backyard where we dug a large pit in the ground in order to build a safe fire. I've also used a large clay pot, a campfire, a bonfire or an old barbecue grill. HOW IS A FIRE CEREMONY PERFORMED? Each of us bring something to burn that we would like to rid from our past (in Full Moon) or a prayer request of something new (in New Moon), that will burn, turn to smoke and release into the ethers. This allows the past energy to move along to its highest spiritual progression path and the new prayer request to move along to its highest spiritual progression path. We may bring pictures, drawings, or intentions written on a piece of paper for the past or the newness. For the past, after we have burned and released it, then we have something prepared that is written down on a clean sheet of paper. This would be something new that we would like to call forth from God. For the newness, the prayer request is then burned and released into the ethers thereby replacing the past. We form a circle around the fire and one by one we call in support from Divine Sources that give us peace. E.g. - God, Jesus, Creator, the Blessed Virgin Mother, Spirit, the Universe, the Archangels, the Saints that we may feel closest to, Guardian Angels, etc. We start with a prayer, and end with a prayer that is coupled with thanksgiving that our prayers and intentions have already been answered. Keep in mind, no one is obligated to speak during a Fire Ceremony. Anyone can participate without stating what they are releasing or calling forth. After we have called in our Divine Source we place into the fire our pictures, drawings and intended release of the past. Once these things have burned to smoke and ash, we then place into the fire what we have written on clean sheet of paper. This would be what we desire to replace those old energies with and call in new. The things we address from our past or call into our future can be shared with the group or kept to ourselves as we go through the Fire Ceremony. YOU WILL NEED ANY OR ALL OF THE FOLLOWING A fire pit or fire place where you can safely burn a fire. A barbecue pit or fireproof pot works well too. If you live in an apartment, it is best to find a place outdoors where you can safely burn a fire. A bucket filled with water or a water hose to put the fire out after the ceremony. Items such as a drawing, picture or written intentions that you would like to release from your past. Anything else that you feel would serve you that need to be released. In strict Native American custom - the burning of sage, sweetgrass or tobacco is burned along with the past, which is given as an offering. When the smoke rises up into the ethers and is carried away to God there should be a quiet or meditative break in order to embrace a new awareness of transformation in your life. It is also symbolic that you can offer up a bit of food you wanted and only ate half of so that you could offer the other half in thanks. THE VALUE OF IMAGERY Do not minimize the value of imagery in Native American ceremony. The Spirit of God is real. This is a way of demonstrating our gratefulness and thanksgiving to God. When we pray to our Source and Supply who is God; He can, will and does affect our lives. So honoring Him and showing Him respect is part of this ceremony. After your fire gets going, each person may contribute to the prayer and then the items are offered to the fire. Tell God and all the Divine Spirits that you have called forth that you offer these things in thanksgiving. Meditate and feel the presence of God all around you. Singing praise, playing peaceful music either through tapes or instruments may also be used. A TIME FOR CELEBRATION You can sing, dance and enjoy yourself. Experience a feeling of thanksgiving that your prayers are already answered. This is a time of celebration. Every Divine Source you called in is present, so give thanks and believe you have already received. Ritual* In the sky, a big, fat Moon looms; her light dripping down upon a clearing in the forest. In the center of the clearing a fire blazes in a stone pit, and around this pit, dancing wildly to the rhythm of drums, are people wearing masks. or.... The room fills with the fragrant smoke of incense and the flickering light of many candles. On the floor a group of people sit in a circle holding hands. Quietly, the sound of a drum begins to resound throughout the room; the sound of a heartbeat. or.... A group of drummers gather off to the side of the festival space and begin beating out a dancing rhythm. Into the center of the space moves a woman wearing veils and tinkling bells. She begins moving to the beating rhythm, her body undulating, her hands beckoning, her eyes peeking over a shimmering veil that covers the rest of her face. The above, and variations on theme, were the scenes described by almost everyone to whom I asked, "What is ritual drumming, and how can it be used?" My first experience with ritual drumming was in a Native American continual heartbeat rhythm, which was explained as being a connecting vibration to the Great Spirit of all life. The "medicine" drum, or "medicine" rattle, is used in many Native American ceremonies as a telephone line between human beings and god. The different rhythms are believed to communicate the essence of what we are trying to say. Ritual drumming is not exclusively used by Native Americans, but in almost every endogenous tradition worldwide. More often then not, drumming is used to bring on an altered state of awareness in much the same way a hallucinogenic drug is used. A constant drumming can force the mind to cross through an inner threshold into another realm of examining, or experiencing, life for that moment in time. Thus, using drums as a transcendental aid in such ceremonies as the shamanic journey, became a reliable and common way of altering consciousness by native tribal shamans. Vibration is said to be the foundation upon which the physical manifests. When the drum is used as a visionary tool to alter one's reality, a new avenue for personal expression is opened. Visions can teach us how to relate to an aspect of our personality that is very similar to, let's say, those characteristics associated to a deer. When the drum is used for visioning, it can help the individual free the trapped deer that dwells within, and bring its energy, or "medicine", to the surface of their consciousness. When this freeing occurs, many people experience the desire to become the full energy of their inner animal. This experience is demonstrated when the person, in their visioning, actually feels that they are this animal and stands up to physically move with, or dance, the energy of this new-found part of their personality. In an ancient shamanic ceremony called Guedra that was performed by the women's society in Morocco, drums were used to hold the energy around the participants in the ceremony; creating a circle of vibration around the group in much the same way as the sacred circles which are cast in Wiccan and High Magick circles. As long as the drum rhythm was played, the circle was cast. When the ceremony ended, the drums would stop and the energy released; the circle would therefore, be open and the ritual ended. I use drums quite extensively in my circles for grounding and centering, and quiet meditation times by playing a simple heartbeat rhythm. I equate this drumbeat to the Mother's heartbeat, to Gaia's heartbeat, to our own heartbeat, to the one heartbeat of all life. A heart that continually beats in all living things; the living heartbeat vibration of life. For Full Moon celebrations, the added rhythms of drumming helps me move deeper into my celebration of life, freeing my inhibitions and allowing me to dance under the full light and become the essence of that light in the darkness. Whether in quiet times or wild jubilation, the vibrations that are created by a beating drum can greatly enhance the energy, alter the mental facilities of the participants, and produce vision. Just recently, I experimented with ritual drumming during a personal past-life regression. The need for this past-life regression came during the time I was writing my fourth book, THE ORAL FAERY TRADITION OF CELTIC -- my working titled, but published as Faery Wicca, Book 1 -- always felt connected to Ireland because of my Irish heritage on my mother's side of the family, and the realm of Faery has always attracted me, but during the course of writing the book, I began to experience a deep knowing that I truly had lived in Ireland at one time. Because I am not completely sure what reincarnation is and whether or not we do have past-lives, I decided to keep an open mind and try doing a regression using a drum. The following story is taken from the recording produced during my attempt to delve into a possible past-life. The morning is gray, shrouded from the solar rays, allowing me to journey within the lunar realm; inner realm. Jack and I share breakfast, coffee and oatmeal. I read a book on the lunar aspects of astrology while he reads the Sports page of the LA Times. I am anxious to begin, but patiently await the passage of the morning time which we always share before rushing off into our respective daily activities. The Moon has moved into Pisces during the night and this will be part of the energy surrounding my ceremony. I like the way the energy feels because it is "psychic" energy, going with-in energy, and I know I will be able to reach my desired destination. As Jack takes his morning shower, I start setting up the altar; it is to be a Faery altar with only Faery tools of power. I take the St. John's Wort flower essence. As Jack prepares to leave, I walk with him to the front door and decide to take a stroll in the garden. "Ah, going for your morning walk?" he teases and closes the gate behind him. He sticks his tongue through a knothole in the fence, then makes a sound. We laugh. I begin my rounds at the flowerbed dedicated to Ishtar. In the distance I can hear Jack's car start and know he has departed. Here and there I stop to admire the beauty of the garden; the dahlia, deep red; the pink frilly rose blossoms; Faery Rath; white sweet¬pea-like blossoms of the Chinese pea pods; bergamot growth; stop to toss the petals air-drying in baskets on the outside Temple altar; the coyote hind-leg bone catches my attention; rock-rose; notice that the California poppy petals have dropped to the ground; wonder if I should thin-out the green bean seedlings now that they've grown to a substantial size and notice the purple blossoms on them; the chamomile will be ready to harvest soon - mustn't forget to send a batch off to Starhawk as she requested; lavender looking a little yellow - maybe getting too much water; ah, the glads are starting to bloom; stoop and pluck a gardenia flower, hold it up to my nose and take a deep in-breath; all is well in the garden; things grow good in the garden; head towards the door; must water the marigold and basil pots on picnic table today - check; exit garden; enter house. Before the altar I sit. The pink candle is lit and the charcoal. I arrange the other items around the altar, and as the charcoal begins to turn gray, I place a drop of the Faery Oil onto it. As the smoke curls gray and white, I run my arms through it and draw it over my head and into my heart to smudge self and body. With wand crystal in hand I travel to each quarter and cast circle. "The air that is her breath; the fire that is her spirit; the water that center. The circle is cast. I am between the worlds." In my left hand I pick up the two pence Eire coin and anoint both sides with a drop of the holy water from Bridget's Well. Next, a drop of Faery Oil is applied to my left wrist, against which I rub my right wrist. As I do this I am thinking of my spirit energy; consecrating it to be receptive and giving. Applying another drop to the first fingertip of my right hand, I trace the Celtic cross on my forehead. "For awakening," I whisper and wonder is this Sinend anointing me? Onto the gray charcoal, I dump the Faery Incense. Picking up the bell, I intone it every four beats as I sing the invocation to the Faery Queen. After the invocation I pick up my dumbec drum and say to the spirit realm, "I go on my Journey now Queen Fay, to remember Sinend, the Cunning Woman. To awaken the Sinend and Cunning Woman of Kisma. I ask your assistance as I go on this Journey." Dum ca tek ca-tek-ca, dum ca tek ca-tek-ca, dum ca tek ca-tek-tek, dum ca tek ca-tek-tek. I close my eyes and began breathing, centering myself. Letting the thoughts come and go; being sidetracked, releasing the sidetrack and breathing on into center. The drumming fills my ears and I focus on the rhythm and breathe with the rhythm. Feeling here, feeling stilled, feeling ready. My Inner Guide begins to direct: Let your focus drop inside, breath inside, breath to center, breath to Earth. Focus on Earth, submerge your energy roots into Mother Earth. My energy intensifies. My mind swirls deeper, deeper, deeper into her core and rise the energy, rise the energy, rise energy. Up my roots, into yoni rises this energy. With one full breath, it rises to crown. My spine straightens. Head comes upright. Crown releases and shines and connects with solar light. Branches reach-up and feel the light connection and sweep down around you to touch the Earth; around you now, womb of energy, of light energy. I breathe and my Shaman's Eye pops and is filled with a solar light. I can see the solar light shining inside - ah, the St. John's Wort is activated. Marry solar and lunar; light and dark. Channel light energy through you and into core of Mother. Connect. Breath release and focus rushes through my body and empties into the Earth. Ah, I am connected; very complete. I feel my Guide smile. Step in elevator. I do and turn to the buttons and push "basement". The doors close and the movement is downward. Relax. I will guide you. I will ask you the necessary questions. Just let go and journey. We know how to do this. We can do this. We will do this. I breath a great big release of air out of my lungs. I squarely face the door. The area in the elevator is predominantly dark. The elevator doors slide open and I step out into what at first seems the lobby hallway before the swimming pool in the Bethesda, Maryland, Pook's Hill Marriott. Follow the light. Pinhole of light. Flash! Then... Dum ca dum-dum, dum ca dum-dum, dum ca dum-dum, dum ca dum-dum. Look at your feet. Grass. Ladyslipper? I've never seen Ladyslipper before so I'm not sure I'm really seeing that, it's just that that's what I think is in the grass. Then lift one up. Oh. Barefoot. It's my right foot. Wait a minute. There's a design on my foot. I think it's henna. Let's see, hum, it begins at the ankle and crosses the top of my foot and ends at my big toe. It's a serpent! I'm looking around the grass and thinking, but there are no serpents in Ireland! We are the serpents! WE ARE SERPENTS! I'm not so sure why I feel so strongly about that. Yes, I do. Look up your legs. Clothe. A skirt; a little ragged. Well, it isn't my best dress, I can tell you that because I'm out in the forest gathering herbs. Higher. A cape or cloak around me. No hood. Dull green color. I am wearing no jewelry. Look at your hands. Dum-ca-dum, dum-ca-dum, dum-ca-dum, dum-ca-dum. I can't see anything. See your hand. Right hand. Fingernails. They're long, but I've chipped the pinky fingernail pulling up the roots. Left hand. It's touching my chest. I've got something around my neck, under my clothes. I think its some kind of necklace or bag. Look at it. I'm trying to pull it out, but I've got something on my back. It's a bundle. Remove the bundle. Oh, my! It's a baby. The bundle is a baby. Oh, look at his beauty. Oh, look at his tiny body. I've opened up the swaddling wrap and he's laying on it on the grass and he's wearing a little white dress. His hair is so red. And he's so fair skinned. His little legs are kicking out and his arms are flinging about. Crying. Crying. I... he's hungry. He's my child. I lift him to my breast and I am shocked by the color of his eyes. They are cloudy blue, see-through blue, white-blue. They frighten me. I sense he-- How old are you. Thirteen. No, twenty-three. I was thirteen when I had menarche. At thirteen it was suggested I conceive, but I ran from the men. I did not want a man to touch me. I am old for having a first child, but it was during the ceremony, during the first waning night that I danced and felt the energy explode in me and pulled my dress away from breasts and allowed them to be seen. The fire raged around me. My head was spinning. I felt as if I was swimming, sinking. Lost in the dancing figures around me; lost in the chaos of the releasing of the new tide. The darkness had begun to swallow us and we were celebrating the approach of Lughnasadh. He mounted me and I opened to receive him. What's the necklace around your neck? Let me lay my child down. A pouch made out of Cervus-megaceros. Inside it is a braid of red and black hair that is fastened through a holed spiral shell. Inside the shell is the Chuisheag grass. This was given me at my initiation; for at La Baal Tine I was the first to draw the Sgaith-an-tobar that year. Who are you? Dum dum dum dum dum dum dum dum dum dum I am Cunning Woman. I am story woman. I am healer. I am strong woman. I am Fay. I am this land. I am ready to tell my sgeal. I am ready! The regression continued on for some time after this. I relived, or visioned scenes from the age of five until my death in my late twenties. When I woke from the regression, I was a bit disoriented and surprised to find that I was still sitting in my living room. I looked down at the Faery altar and then out the window into the garden that stood boldly outside ¬ a witness that Sinend, the Cunning Woman, Kisma now lived in the twentieth century. Sometime during the course of the regression the beating of the drum completely disappeared, for when I came out of it, my hands were resting in my lap and the drum had actually slipped off my lap and was resting on its side. Powerful! What is ritual drumming, and how can it be used? Ritual drumming is a tool we can use to alter our atmospheres and consciousness during sacred ceremonies, meditations, psycho-therapy, wild celebrations, and, as I have recently found out, even as an aid to performing a past-life regression. The usage of drumming is open to exploration. In your attempts to connect with the Great Spirit, or your Higher Self, may your drumming heartbeat provide you with a rich rhythm of life. ~Elder Airwolf~]

Getting Ready for the Supermoon: 6 Step New Moon Manifestation Ritual

One of the supermoon dates in 2014 is about to take place this Saturday, July 12.

This supermoon is especially important for yogis as well.

Supermoons refer to when the moon is slightly closer to Earth in its orbit than usual. The effect of the closer orbit is most noticeable when there is a full moon.

“So, the moon may seem bigger although the difference in its distance from Earth is only a few percent at such times,” said Dr. James Garvin, chief scientist at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center on the space agency’s website. “It is called a supermoon because this is a very noticeable alignment that at first glance would seem to have an effect. The ‘super’ in supermoon is really just the appearance of being closer.”

Because of how close the supermoon is, it can appear as much as 14 percent larger in the sky and 30 percent brighter to our eyes than normal moons, according to NASA.

These supermoons don’t typically impact the Earth in any big ways, though they usually bring higher tides. Perigee new moons, or perigee full moons, elevate the tides even more than normal supermoons, according to EarthSky.

“Each month, on the day of the new moon, the Earth, moon and sun are aligned, with the  [Screen Shot 2014-01-27 at 3.07.10 PM] moon in between. This line-up creates wide-ranging tides, known as spring tides. High spring tides climb up especially high, and on the same day low tides plunge especially low,” it reports.

“The January 1 and 30 extra-close new moons will accentuate the spring tide, giving rise to what’s called a perigean spring tide. If you live along an ocean coastline, watch for high tides caused by the two January 2014 new moons – or supermoons. Will these high tides cause flooding? Probably not, unless a strong weather system accompanies the perigean spring tide. Still, keep an eye on the weather, because storms do have a large potential to accentuate perigean spring tides.”

The other supermoons this year are forecasted to happen on July 12, August 10, and September 9.The one is August is supposed to be the closet to Earth.

The term supermoon came from astrologer Richard Nolle over 30 years ago, and is only now coming into popular usage, according to EarthSky. Nolle said a supermoon is “a new or full moon which occurs with the moon at or near (within 90% of) its closest approach to Earth in a given orbit.”

Before supermoons were called supermoons, they were referred to perigee full moon, or perigee new moon. Perigee means “the point in the orbit of the moon or a satellite at which it is nearest to the earth,” being derived from the Greek word perigeion, which meant “close around the Earth.” [The Epoch Times]

6 Step New Moon Manifestation Ritual

The new moon is the birthing cycle of the moon’s various phases. Are you ready to attract your heartfelt longings by doing a moon ritual focused on manifestation? The new moon phase is an optimal time for planning and seeding your intentions. Seedlings need a period of gestation before they break through the soil and reach for the sunlight. This is also true for our cultivating our ideas and clearing the way for our visions to surface in reality. The dark side of the moon, with its mysterious unseen forces, offers a nurturing environment where our intentions can establish roots before their miraculous manifestations begin to sprout and reach out to the stars.

Supply suggestions:
:: notebooks
:: pen and colored markers
:: scissors
:: scotch tape
:: candle
:: matches
:: incense
:: smudge sticks
:: meditation CDs

**Prepare yourself a sacred space where your will perform the ceremony when the new moon arrives.

Cleanse your sacred area with an opening prayer, a sage smudging, and/or by burning some incense.

Light one or more candles.

Center your being and calm yourself in whatever way is appropriate for you. Take some deep cleansing breaths, slip in a meditation CD to listen to, and/or leisurely sip on a cup of relaxing herbal tea.

Open your notebook, and date the first page. Write down these words “I accept these things into my life now or something better for my highest good and for the highest good of all concerned.” or something similar. Below your affirmation statement, begin writing down your desires. Your list may consist of a single item or you may have several pages listing multiple items. Try not to limit yourself. If having many things in your life helps to fulfill you then don’t deny yourself wanting these things.

During the month when an item on your new moon list comes to you no not merely cross it off of your list. Take the time to rewrite the list in its entirety eliminating the manifested item from the listing. Revising your master list in this way is highly recommended. At the same time you may add whatever else that you have decided you would like. Feel free to reword any of the original phrases to better suit your life now. It is natural that your desires will change as time advances.

A second notebook will be used as a manifestation scrapbook where you can paste in pictures or catalog clippings of items that you are wanting to manifest. Creating manifesting scrapbooks or vision boards is a fun project to undertake, enjoy yourself! You will soon be amazed how these things begin to find their way into your life once you start this process.

Rededicating your New Moon Intentions

Each month at the new moon rededicate your intentions by renewing your list at a repeated ritual. This is accomplished by rewriting your list out using a fresh sheet of paper. Please don’t get in the habit of simply scratching out the items you no longer desire and simply adding the new stuff to the bottom of your old list. You don’t want clutter and sloppiness energies messing up the path meant to deliver new stuff into your life do you? Disregard any items that no longer feed your soul and add new things which will.

It is helpful to salt and pepper your manifest list with smaller items that will manifest quickly, such as tickets to the ballet, lunch with a friend, or a day at the spa. You may think that smaller things are too trivial to put on your intention list… Wrong! Things that tend to manifest with less effort still deserve to be written down. Write down everything that you desire, no matter how little or simple. If it is something that makes you happy, write it down.

Manifesting smaller items on our lists actually creates a steady flow of chi giving your list a boost. These smaller manifestations create movement, allowing an ebb and flow of the tides. We are dealing here with the moon cycles after all. Besides, sometimes we forget to appreciate the smaller pleasures in our lives while we are waiting for the BIG stuff to come in. If you only write statements like, “I want to win the lottery” in your notebook then you are limiting yourself by not allowing abundance to flow to you from a multitude of avenues.

On its elliptical orbit, the moon reaches perigee [the point when it passes closest to the earth].  When this close approach coincides with the whole illumination of the full moon... blam!  SUPERMOON!  Though, don't try to discuss this term with a full-blown astronomer.  They don't recognize it.  To them it just happens to be that perigee and the full moon share a day and because of it, the moon will be noticeably larger than it is when it is full at apogee (the point in its orbit farthest from Earth).

Yawn!

Good thing the Witching World knows there's more to our moon than just science!  The moon, in all of its phases -- from dark to waxing crescent and full to waning Crone -- embodies the Goddess aspect of our divinity.  She is a symbol of the ever-changing, ever-flowing energies around and within each of us.  There are many in our Faith who draw her down and soak in her light and who follow her through her cycle -- taking on new goals and projects as she grows; discarding negativity and completing what lies pending and in wait as she descends into darkness once again.

 

Image by Kane L Strand

In honor of Saturday's extreme Supermoon, I humbly share with you the ritual prayer that I wrote for my children to recite on the esbats.  For those of you with Pagan children of your own, I hope that you find its innocence touching -- [to hear my son's voices as they repeat it is nothing shy of angelic].

To our Esbat Blessing we like to add Moon Cookies [recipe provided] and a selection of incenses and essential oils under the moon's rule [camphor, jasmine, lemon, lily, melon, night-blooming cereus, sandalwood, stephanotis and water lily -- thank you to Scott Cunningham's "Magical Aromatherapy" for those particular correspondences].
 

Moon Cookie

MOON COOKIES
1C butter, softened
1/2C brown sugar
3/4C white sugar
2 eggs [cage-free please!]
2 3/4C flour
2TSP baking soda
1TSP vanilla

Oven: 375

Cream butter.  Add sugars.  Beat one minute.  Add eggs one at a time.  Beat well between eggs.  Slowly add flour and baking soda.  Then vanilla.  Beat well for three minutes.  Refrigerate ten minutes.  Roll out between parchment paper [with flour if needed].  Use a clean aluminum can [or circle-shaped cookie cutter] to cut 'full moons' from the dough.  Re-refrigerate to make the transfer to the cookie sheet easier.  

Bake 8 - 10 minutes.

We like to add two crescent moons to either side of the cookie in a light blue frosting to get the full effect of the triple goddess.  We also make them during crescent moon phases [any excuse for a cookie, right?!] and frost accordingly. 


***A CHILDREN'S FULL MOON RITUAL

Begin by casting your circle -- to make it fun for a child, hold hands and move in a circle as you call upon the elements and invoke the gods. 

PRAYER
 "Mother Moon, so bright,
so full and round,
do you know my voice
within the sound --
of life on earth,
of all the noise,
of cars, of tools,
of games and toys?
For though I’m small,
I am here,
the only Me
that you will hear.
Bless my dreams.
Keep them true.
And when fears I face,
please see me through–
from dark to light,
from night to day.
By you, I live
to laugh and play."
Reach your arms toward the moon and recite the following as you pull your hands toward the center of your chest, welcoming the energy being offered:
"I draw you down,
a light so whole
and keep you
in my very soul."
  
At the close of our prayer we blow our goddess a kiss as we proclaim, "Bless-ed Be".  And, of course, we end our night reading "Goodnight Moon" by Margaret Wise Brown.

Good night moon.  Good night cow jumping over the moon.
Good night stars.  Good night air.  Good night noises....
everywhere.

 

Drawing Down The Moon

I have a small confession. It's been years since I've drawn down the moon. I really miss drawing down the moon though. If this is something you have never experienced, tonight is the absolute perfect night to do it. Tonight we have what they call a super moon. It is when the moon is closest to the earth. But, wait Luna! What is drawing down the moon? Oh, I'm so glad you asked my friends!

Drawing down the moon is an amazing experience where you draw the power of the moon inside you, as well as invoking the Goddess inside of you. It's a very beautiful and powerful experience. Let me break it down for you a little bit more.



The time of the full moon is a very magickal and powerful time. This is the perfect time for big spells that you need quick results from. But the most important part of it is this: at the time of the full moon, magick reaches it's peak of the month for drawing things to you. After the full moon, you go into the waning phase. During the moon's waning phase it is best to do spells that send things away from you such as banishings, releasings, etc. During the waning phase, many witches notice that their powers seem to dwindle a little bit as well. Ever noticed how around the time of the waning moon you seem a little sluggish and tired? No? Well, maybe that's just me. However, because of the waning phase of the moon, things are diminishing and decreasing, so when you have a full moon, drawing down the moon will help you store up extra energy. Make sense?

It's a lot like a solar powered battery. It stores up energy during the day because of the sun, and at night time it uses that energy to produce light, etc. We are a lot like that. During the waxing moon we have all sorts of energy and are capable of storing up more energy. During the waning moon, we can become a little sluggish and seem to be dispelling energy. So, how do we go about remedying that? Drawing down the full moon. The full moon is like when the sun is at it's full peak with your solar battery storing even more energy from it. So, we draw down the moon to keep a well of energy stored during the waxing phase to use for any of our spell work then.

So how do we go about doing that? Well, my friends, I have a little ritual that I like to do from time to time. As I stated before, it's been years since I've done this, but this is a tried and true ritual!

Full Moon Ritual
Items needed:
Drinking glass
Water
Incense
Salt
Candle
The incense can be any scent that you feel called to. The candle would be perfect if it were silver, but sometimes silver candles are hard to come across, so a white candle will do as well. You don't have to have a huge candle, it can be a tea light, but some people do like having one large candle, dedicated to full moon work, that they light only during their full moon rituals. If this is your first time doing a full moon ritual, please make sure that the candle is new. Otherwise, if you have a dedicated full moon candle, please feel free to use it.
If the weather allows it, go outside where you can see the full moon in absolute plain sight. If it's raining or just too darn cold, or your neighbors might freak out, it's fine to do this ritual inside. If working inside, make sure you are near a window where you can get full view of the moon. 
Now, once you've decided where you are going to do your ritual, it's time to set up a ritual altar. This is not as scary as it may seem. The way I view a ritual altar is as my work place to hold my tools. I very rarely view it as an altar in the sense of say a Catholic altar, because that makes it seem almost like a forbidden place. I say that because as a child, raised in a Catholic church, I always loved the church. I was most especially drawn to the altar, mainly out of curiosity because it had all these super cool gadgets on it. However, one time I was in the church alone, and I let my curiosity get the better of me. I approached the altar and decided I wanted to see what it was all about. 
While snooping around, one of the adults came in and pretty much screamed at me and informed me I was promptly going to hell because I was desecrating their altar! There wasn't even anything on the damn thing! So from then on, altars became an off limits, absolutely not for mere mortals to touch, type thing. So, my altar is a place to set up my candle, hold my incense, and whatever else I need for the working. We'll do a further post on different types of altars in a later post. For now, just make sure you have a flat surface to set your candle, bowl of salt, incense, and glass of water on. 
Now, in Wicca, we would cast a circle. Circles are meant to keep negative ickiness away from you while you are working with the powers that be. Some people work in circles, some don't. We won't get into the debate about whether or not to work in a circle in this post, we'll save that for another time. For now, if you want to work in a circle, you can cast one now. I'll share an example of what I would do, and you can go from there if you like. Otherwise, skip this step.
Casting the circle:
Give yourself lots of room to work. You don't want to feel confined to a tiny space, so don't just stand in one place and turn around in a circle, walk a large circle. If you're inside your home, and have just a small space to work at, like myself, you can envision a circle forming around your entire home. I like to walk a salt circle completely around my house, and when working inside, I'll find that circle in my mind, touch it with my energy, and watch a circle cover my whole house. More on that tomorrow. 
Anyway, if working outside, walk a large-ish circle around your altar/workspace. While walking the circle, walk in a clockwise motion, and you can point with your finger, an athame, a wand, or not at all, however you are comfortable. As you are walking clockwise, envision a magickal boundary appearing and covering your workspace in a big bubble. You can say fancy words while the circle is forming if you like, but I just go with something simple that I can remember, because I can be a little bit scatter brained. I would say something like: "As this circle opens, all negativity is kept at bay. Only those invited within this circle may enter, and may only come with an open heart." Then when I see the circle complete itself, I'll walk to the middle and say, "As above, so below, this circle is now open." There's a reason behind that, and if you're new to the craft, we will cover that next Wednesday during our next Witchcraft 101 post. 
So, now you're circle is open, and you have a safe place to work. Now you're probably wondering what to do next. That's pretty easy. Remember where you started walking your circle? Grab your salt, and go there. Walk the circle again and toss a little salt as you walk saying, "By the power of earth, this circle is protected." Next grab your water, and walk the circle, saying, "By the power of water, this circle is protected." Grab the incense, light it, and walk the circle saying, "By the power of air, this circle is protected." Light the candle, walk with it around the circle saying, "By the power of fire, this circle is protected." 
Now you're circle is completely protected and ready to go! Sounds repetitive and boring, I know, but believe me when I say there's some scary shit out there, and if you're going to cast a circle, you want it completely sealed and protected. But, now comes the fun part, I promise!
Walk to your altar, gaze up at the moon. Now say:
Goddess of the Moon, full, beautiful, and fair. Please enter into this circle with me.
Envision the pure silver light of moonlight tunneling into your circle, filling it, but not blinding. Feel the goddess standing beside you. Now, hold your glass of water above your head, facing the moon. Envision that same silver light filling the glass and swirling through the water. Envision the silver light overflowing the glass. Feel the energy tingle through the glass, through your fingertips, and into you. Now say:
Goddess of the Moon, I ask that you fill my glass with your pure energy.
As the water turns into your energy, I ask that you sustain me through all the days to come.
Now drink the water. Feel the energy coursing through your body. Let it swirl throughout every part of your body. Envision it filling you with silver light from your toes to the crown of your head. When it reaches the crown of your head, let it spill out in a straight line, back to the moon, connecting you with the Goddess of the Moon. Envision your toes as roots, and meditate momentarily on how the Moon sustains the earth, and all that live in it. Once you've finished, feel the energy, and everywhere that it has touched within your body. By now, your body is probably tingling all over, and it may be hard for you to focus, which is totally normal. Pull the energy from your fingers, toes, and head, down into the center of your belly. Feel it's warmth and strength there. This is where you will carry the energy until the next time you draw down the moon. 
Now that you've centered the energy, there will probably be excess, and you may feel a bit light headed, or dizzy, or even just super amped. If you are outside, sit on the ground, and let the excess energy flow into the ground. Do not let the energy in your center flow out, only the excess that is buzzing around everywhere else. Now is the perfect time to talk with Goddess, cast any spells you had planned for tonight, or just be at peace inside your circle. Once you've finished whatever you planned, you can close the circle. 
Walk counterclockwise, watching the circle disappear. Thank the Goddess for all of her blessings, and for sharing her energy with you before closing the circle. You can let the incense burn down, put out your candle, and clean up the area. Now that everything is cleaned up, it would probably be a good idea for you to have something to eat. Even after grounding (when you sat on the ground and let the excess energy flow into it), you are probably going to feel a little off in some way. Eating something will help fully bring you back to this world, and fully ground you. 
My rituals are always very simple, and most are planned for people on a strict budget. There's no need for fancy tools, and in my personal practice, the fancier things are, the more likely I am to get distracted from what I'm actually doing. The fancier the wording is in my rituals, the more likely I am to forget what the hell I was saying, and then I'll get distracted again. So I keep things simple. It doesn't matter how fancy or simple you go, what is most important is what is in your heart when you enter the ritual. 
I hope this helps you guys be able to plan your full moon ritual tonight. I will be doing this ritual later tonight, maybe in an even more simplified version, depending on what kind of mood Knight is in. How do you plan on celebrating the super moon?
~Elder Airwolf~

All About the Esbats

 Pagans and Witches dearly love their holidays and sometimes go to extremes to celebrate them. But what if they need to cast a particular spell, remove, lessen, or increase some aspect of their life, or if they need to perform a healing ritual, or connect with their personal deity, or ask for protection, energy, insights, or help? All these things can be aligned with the phases of the moon. If you have a particular need, determine what phase the moon is in and write your spell/ritual accordingly.


On this page I've included a run-down of the various moon-phases and what they mean in your life. Keep in mind that one is not limited to following the meanings too rigidly. For example: If you need to bring money into your life and it's the waning moon ask that your bills be removed or that your needs be lessened.
 

Full Moon energy is used for banishing unwanted influences in your life; protection magick; and divination. Planning, releasing, and working backwards in time are done on the full moon as well.


It is said theat the best Full Moon magick can be conjured for seven days: the three days prior to the Full Moon, the night of the Full Moon itself, and three days after the Full Moon. Sometimes the results of Full Moon magick can take aproximatel one moon cycle to take hold and come to completion.*

The Full Moon is the time to invoke the Mother Goddess at the height of her glory, this is when the ceremony called "Drawing Down the Moon" is performed. During this ceremony the energy and essence of the Full Moon is drawn into oneself, when done properly you will feel a heightened trance state combined with a power surge that radiates through your whole body. Traditionally this is only done within a protective circle. 

The Mother is the ripeness of womanhood, the boiling pot of Badb which is the richness of life. Her color is red, the color of blood and the life force. The Mother is Summer, the day, lustiness, teacher, The Full Moon.**

The New Moon is used for personal growth, healing, the blessing of a new project or venture, etc. If done correctly, success should be obtained by the first Full Moon.*


This is the time when the Crone is transformed into the Maiden. It is a time of renewal and new beginnings.

The Maiden is essential to the continuation of all life; her color is white, denoting innocence and newness. She is the springtime, the dawn, eternal youth and vigor, enchantment and seduction, the new and waxing moon.**
 

Dark Moon


The three days before the New Moon is known as the dark of the moon. This is when you can't see the moon at all in the heavens. Traditionally, this is a time when no magick is performed. It is a period to give yourself a break; a time of rest. Deep meditation and vision questing can be performed now, but not for a specific magickal purpose. However, The Crone, or the Dark Mother, rules this time, and if her magick is needed, now is the time when you should use it.*
 

The period between the New Moon and the Full Moon is called the Waxing Moon. This is a good time for attraction magick, especially between the New Moon and the First Quarter.*


The Waxing Moon is the time for invoking the Goddess in her guise of Maiden.
 


[spacer gif] [holhr]
[spacer gif] The period between the Full Moon and the New Moon is called the Waning Moon. This is a time for banishing and rejecting things in our lives that we no longer wish to carry around with us. Negative emotions, bad habits, diseases, and ailments can successfully be banned during this time.*

During the Waning Moon the Mother Goddess is transformed into the Crone. Invoke Her in this guise.

The Crone, or Dark Mother, sometimes called the Hag, has black as her color, the color of darkness where all life rests before rebirth. This aspect of the Goddess is Winter, night, wisdom, counsel, the gateway to death and reincarnation, the Waning Moon.**
*From "To Ride a Silver Broomstick" by Silver RavenWolf

**From "Celtic Magic" by D.J. Conway


~Esbats Rituals~
Moon Magick
Did you know that all lunar Holy-days are called Esbats, but any Wiccan ritual held at any time other than a Sabbat may be called an Esbat? I didn't, and I think most Witches call rituals performed on or around a lunar holy-day an esbat, while other rituals are simply, rituals. Due to the rotation of the earth, the Wiccan calendar contains 13 Full Moons, which means a full moon happens every 28 1/4 days. Full Moon energy is used for banishing unwanted influences, protection and divination. A Full Moon is also a good time
for planning, releasing and working backwards in time. Full Moon Magic can be done for seven days, three days before, the day of, and three days after the full moon.
The New Moon is used for personal growth, healing, the blessing of a new project etc.
Between the New Moon and Full Moon is the phase called Waxing Moon. Magick for this phase includes attraction magick, increasing, growth, and gain. Make statements on how your life should be.
Between the Full Moon and New Moon is the phase called the Waning Moon.Magic for this phase includes banishing magick, such a loosing negative emotions, bad habits etc.
Three days before the New Moon is known as the Dark Moon, as it is not visible in the sky. Traditionally, no magick is performed at this time. It is a time for rest.
Due to the rotation of the earth there are thirteen Full Moons, each carrying a traditional name.
January - Wolf Moon
February - Storm Moon
March - Chaste Moon
April - Seed Moon
May - Hare Moon
June - Dyad (pair) Moon
July - Mead Moon
August - Wyrt (green plant) Moon
September - Barley Moon
October - Blood Moon
November - Snow Moon
December - Oak Moon
Types of Rituals
Consecration of Tools
Purifying ritual to cleanse the Witches tools.
Erecting the Temple
Is done at the start of all rituals, purifies and establishes were the ritual is to take place.
Clearing the Temple
Is also performed at all rituals, disperses any energies raised during the ritual.
Sabbat Rite
Each Sabbat has it own unique style of ritual to recognise and worship the goddess and god and the turning of the wheel.
Esbat Rite
A basic ritual that can be performed at any time.
Full Moon Rite
A ritual designed to be done once a month at full moon.
Dark Moon Rite
A ritual designed to be done once a month at new or dark moon

January ~ Storm Moon
A storm is said to rage most fiercely just
before it ends, and the year usually follows suit.
February ~ Chaste Moon
The antiquated word for pure reflects the
custom of greeting the new year with a clear soul.
March ~ Seed Moon
Sowing season and symbol of the start of the new year.
April ~ Hare Moon
The sacred animal was associated in Roman legends with springtime and fertility.
May ~ Dyad Moon
The Latin word for a pair refers to the twin
stars of the constellation of Castor and Pollux.
June ~ Mead Moon
During late June and most of July the , or meadows, meads, were mowed for hay.
July ~ Wort Moon
When the sun was in Leo, the worts (from the Anglo-Saxon wyrt plant) were gathered to be dried and stored.
August ~ Barley Moon
Persephone, virgin Goddess of rebirth,
carries a sheaf of barley as a symbol of the harvest.
September ~ Blood Moon
Marking the season when domestic
animals were sacrificed for winter provisions.
Libra's full moon occasionally became the Wine Moon when a grapeharvest was expected to produce a superior vintage.
October ~ Snow Moon
Scorpio heralds the dark season when
the sun is at it's lowest and the first snows fly.
November ~ Oak Moon
The sacred tree of the Druids and the Roman
God Jupiter is most noble as it withstands winter storms.
December ~ Wolf Moon
The fearsome nocturnal animal represents the "night" of the year.
The Blue Moon ~ Variable
A Blue Moon occurs when the moon with its 28 day cycle appears twice within the same calendar month, due to that month's 31 day duration. Many consider the Blue Moon to be a goal moon where you set specific goals for yourself.
The Black Moon ~ Variable
A Black Moon occurs when there are two dark cycles of the moon in any given calendar month. It is believed that the second dark moon of a time of great power within the spiritual world and any magick worked during this time is especially powerful. right © 2004 The Celtic
Source: www.wicca.com. All rights reserved




From the Farmers Almanac
Full Moon names date back to Native Americans, of what is now the northern and eastern United States. The tribes kept track of the seasons by giving distinctive names to each recurring full Moon. Their names were applied to the entire month in which each occurred. There was some variation in the Moon names, but in general, the same ones were current throughout the Algonquin tribes from New England to Lake Superior. European settlers followed that custom and created some of their own names. Since the lunar month is only 29 days long on the average, the full Moon dates shift from year to year. Here is the Farmers Almanac's list of the full Moon names.
• Full Wolf Moon - January Amid the cold and deep snows of midwinter, the wolf packs howled hungrily outside Indian villages. Thus, the name for January's full Moon. Sometimes it was also referred to as the Old Moon, or the Moon After Yule. Some called it the Full Snow Moon, but most tribes applied that name to the next Moon.
• Full Snow Moon - February Since the heaviest snow usually falls during this month, native tribes of the north and east most often called February's full Moon the Full Snow Moon. Some tribes also referred to this Moon as the Full Hunger Moon, since harsh weather conditions in their areas made hunting very difficult.
• Full Worm Moon - March As the temperature begins to warm and the ground begins to thaw, earthworm casts appear, heralding the return of the robins. The more northern tribes knew this Moon as the Full Crow Moon, when the cawing of crows signaled the end of winter; or the Full Crust Moon, because the snow cover becomes crusted from thawing by day and freezing at night. The Full Sap Moon, marking the time of tapping maple trees, is another variation. To the settlers, it was also known as the Lenten Moon, and was considered to be the last full Moon of winter.
• Full Pink Moon - April This name came from the herb moss pink, or wild ground phlox
, which is one of the earliest widespread flowers of the spring. Other names for this month's celestial body include the Full Sprouting Grass Moon, the Egg Moon, and among coastal tribes the Full Fish Moon, because this was the time that the shad swam upstream to spawn.
• Full Flower Moon - May In most areas, flowers are abundant everywhere during this time. Thus, the name of this Moon. Other names include the Full Corn Planting Moon, or the Milk Moon.
• Full Strawberry Moon - June This name was universal to every Algonquin tribe. However, in Europe they called it the Rose Moon. Also because the relatively short season for harvesting strawberries comes each year during the month of June . . . so the full Moon that occurs during that month was christened for the strawberry!
• The Full Buck Moon - July July is normally the month when the new antlers of buck deer push out of their foreheads in coatings of velvety fur. It was also often called the Full Thunder Moon, for the reason that thunderstorms are most frequent during this time. Another name for this month's Moon was the Full Hay Moon.
• Full Sturgeon Moon - August The fishing tribes are given credit for the naming of this Moon, since sturgeon, a large fish of the Great Lakes and other major bodies of water, were most readily caught during this month. A few tribes knew it as the Full Red Moon because, as the Moon rises, it appears reddish through any sultry haze. It was also called the Green Corn Moon or Grain Moon.
• Full Corn Moon - September This full moon's name is attributed to Native Americans because it marked when corn was supposed to be harvested. Most often, the September full moon is actually the Harvest Moon.
• Full Harvest Moon - October This is the full Moon that occurs closest to the autumn equinox. In two years out of three, the Harvest Moon comes in September, but in some years it occurs in October. At the peak of harvest, farmers can work late into the night by the light of this Moon. Usually the full Moon rises an average of 50 minutes later each night, but for the few nights around the Harvest Moon, the Moon seems to rise at nearly the same time each night: just 25 to 30 minutes later across the U.S., and only 10 to 20 minutes later for much of Canada and Europe. Corn, pumpkins, squash, beans, and wild rice the chief Indian staples are now ready for gathering.
• Full Beaver Moon - November This was the time to set beaver traps before the swamps froze, to ensure a supply of warm winter furs. Another interpretation suggests that the name Full Beaver Moon comes from the fact that the beavers are now actively preparing for winter. It is sometimes also referred to as the Frosty Moon.
• The Full Cold Moon; or the Full Long Nights Moon - December During this month the winter cold fastens its grip, and nights are at their longest and darkest. It is also sometimes called the Moon before Yule. The term Long Night Moon is a doubly appropriate name because the midwinter night is indeed long, and because the Moon is above the horizon for a long time. The midwinter full Moon has a high trajectory across the sky because it is opposite a low.

brought to you by,

~Elder Airwolf~

Blessed Be the next supermoon in 2014 is July 12

Expect high tides around Jan. 1 and 30, 2014
The July 12, 2014 supermoon isn’t the closest supermoon of the year. For that, you’ll have to wait until August.
According to the definition of supermoon coined by an astrologer, Richard Nolle, over 30 years ago – and popularized only in the past few years – the year 2014 has a total of five supermoons. They are the two new moons of January, and the full moons of July, August and September. Follow the links below to learn about the supermoons of 2014.
What is a supermoon?
What did astronomers call these moons before we called them supermoons?
When are the next supermoons in 2014?
Spring tides will accompany the July, August and September supermoons.
Dates of closest full supermoons in past and future years
What is a Black Moon?
About three or four times a year, the new or full moon coincides closely in time with the perigee of the moon—the point when the moon is closest to the Earth. These occurrences are often called 'perigean spring tides.' The difference between ‘perigean spring tide’ and normal tidal ranges for all areas of the coast is small. In most cases, the difference is only a couple of inches above normal spring tides. Image and caption via NOAA.
About three or four times a year, the new or full moon coincides closely in time with the perigee of the moon—the point when the moon is closest to the Earth. These occurrences are often called ‘perigean spring tides.’ The difference between ‘perigean spring tide’ and normal tidal ranges for all areas of the coast is small. In most cases, the difference is only a couple of inches above normal spring tides. Image and caption via NOAA.
Photographs or other instruments can tell the difference between a supermoon and ordinary full moon. The supermoon of March 19, 2011 (right), compared to an average moon of December 20, 2010 (left). Image by Marco Langbroek of the Netherlands via Wikimedia Commons.
Photographs or other instruments can tell the difference between a supermoon and ordinary full moon. The supermoon of March 19, 2011 (right), compared to an average moon of December 20, 2010 (left). Image by Marco Langbroek of the Netherlands via Wikimedia Commons.
What is a supermoon? We confess: before a few years ago, we in astronomy had never heard that term. To the best of our knowledge, astrologer Richard Nolle coined the term supermoon over 30 years ago. The term has only recently come into popular usage. Nolle has defined a supermoon as:
… a new or full moon which occurs with the moon at or near (within 90% of) its closest approach to Earth in a given orbit.
That’s a pretty generous definition and allows for many supermoons. By this definition, according to Nolle:
There are 4-6 supermoons a year on average.
What did astronomers call these moons before we called them supermoons? We called them a perigee full moon, or a perigee new moon. Perigee just means “near Earth.”
The moon is full, or opposite Earth from the sun, once each month. It’s new, or more or less between the Earth and sun, once each month. And, every month, as the moon orbits Earth, it comes closest to Earth. That point is called perigee. The moon always swings farthest away once each month; that point is called apogee.
No doubt about it. Supermoon is a catchier term than perigee new moon or perigee full moon.
We first became familiar with the supermoon label in the year 2011 when the media used it to describe the full moon of March 19, 2011. On that date, the full moon aligned with proxigee – the closest perigee of the year – to stage the closest, largest full moon of 2011.
When are the next supermoons in 2014? By Nolle’s definition, the new moon or full moon has to come within 361,863 kilometers (224,851 miles) of our planet, as measured from the centers of the moon and Earth, in order to be considered a supermoon.
By that definition, the year 2014 has a total of five supermoons. The first supermoon, for 2014, came on New Year’s Day, with the January 1 new moon. The second came with the new moon of January 30, 2014. The full moons of July, August and September will also be supermoons, by Nolle’s definition. Thus, the next supermoons – aka perigee full moons – in 2014 are:
Full moon of July 12 at 11:25 UTC
Full moon of August 10 at 18:09 UTC
Full moon of September 9 at 1:38 UTC
The full moon on August 10, 2014, will present the closest supermoon of the year (356,896 kilometers or 221,765 miles).
However, the new moons on January 1 and January 30 were not far behind, featuring the year’s second-closest and third-closest supermoons, respectively. On January 1, the moon turned new less than 10 hours before reaching lunar perigee – the moon’s closest point to Earth in its orbit. On January 30, the moon turned new nearly 12 hours after reaching lunar perigee.
Want more detail? Okay. In 2014, the moon comes closest to Earth on August 10 (356,896 kilometers), and swings farthest away some two weeks before, on July 28 (406,567 kilometers). That’s a difference of 49,671 kilometers (406,567 – 356,896 = 49,671). Ninety percent of this 49,671-figure equals 44,703.9 kilometers (0.9 x 49,671 = 44,703.9). Presumably, any new or full moon coming closer than 361,863.1 kilometers (406,567 – 44,703.9 = 361,863.1) would be “at or near (within 90% of) its closest approach to Earth.”
Around each new moon (left) and full moon (right) – when the sun, Earth, and moon are located more or less on a line in space – the range between high and low tides is greatest. These are called spring tides. A supermoon – new or full moon at its closest to Earth – accentuates these tides. Image via physicalgeography.net
Spring tides will accompany the July, August and September supermoons. Will the tides be larger than usual at the July, August and September 2014 full moons? Yes, all full moons (and new moons) combine with the sun to create larger-than-usual tides, but perigee full moons (or perigee new moons) elevate the tides even more.
Each month, on the day of the new moon, the Earth, moon and sun are aligned, with the moon in between. This line-up creates wide-ranging tides, known as spring tides. High spring tides climb up especially high, and on the same day low tides plunge especially low.
The July, August and September extra-close full moons will accentuate the spring tide, giving rise to what’s called a perigean spring tide. If you live along an ocean coastline, watch for high tides caused by these full moons.
Will these high tides cause flooding? Probably not, unless a strong weather system accompanies the perigean spring tide. Still, keep an eye on the weather, because storms do have a large potential to accentuate perigean spring tides.
Dates of closest full supermoons in past and future years. More often than not, the one day of the year that the full moon and perigee align also brings about the year’s closest perigee (also called proxigee). Because the moon has recurring cycles, we can count on the full moon and perigee to come in concert in periods of about one year, one month and 18 days.
Therefore, the full moon and perigee realign in periods of about one year and 48 days. So we can figure the dates of the closest full moons in recent and future years as:
March 19, 2011
May 6, 2012
June 23, 2013
August 10, 2014
September 28, 2015
November 14, 2016
January 2, 2018.
There won’t be a perigee full moon in 2017 because the full moon and perigee won’t realign again (after November 14, 2016) until January 2, 2018.
By the way, some astronomers will call all the full moons listed above proxigee full moons.
But, like you, we’ll have fun just calling ‘em supermoons.
What most call a Blue Moon isn't blue in color. It's only Blue in name. This great moon photo from EarthSky Facebook friend Rebecca Lacey in Cambridge, Idaho. 
What does a full supermoon look like? Astronomers say you can’t really detect any difference with your eye between a supermoon and any ordinary full moon. This great moon photo is from EarthSky Facebook friend Rebecca Lacey in Cambridge, Idaho.
What is a Black Moon? We had never heard the term Black Moon until early 2014. It doesn’t come from astronomy, or skylore, either. Instead, according to David Harper, the term comes from Wiccan culture. It’s the name for the second of two new moons in a month. January 2014, for example, had two new moons. Does a Black Moon have to be a supermoon in order to be called Black? No. You can read more about Black Moons here.
The next Black Moon by the second-of-two-new-moons-in-one-calendar-month definition will occur on October 30, 2016. Sten Odenwald at astronomycafe.net lists some other names for the second new moon in a calendar month: Spinner Moon, Finder’s Moon, Secret Moon.
However, we’ve also come across another definition for Black Moon: the third of four new moons to occur in one season. In 2015, the new moon coming on February 18 will present the third of four new moons in between the December 2014 solstice and the March 2015 equinox. This February 18, 2015 Black Moon will also be the closest new moon supermoon of 2015, but, once again, a seasonal Black Moon doesn’t necessarily have to be a supermoon.
Bottom line: The term supermoon doesn’t come from astronomy. It comes from astrology, and the definition is pretty generous so that there are 4 to 6 supermoons each year. This post explains what a supermoon is, how many will occur in 2014, which moon is the most “super” of all the 2014 supermoons, and gives a list of upcoming full supermoons for the years ahead.
See a supermoon! Awesome photos of the June 2013 full supermoon
Learn more: Tides and the pull of the moon and sun
The next supermoon in 2014 is July 12
Expect high tides around Jan. 1 and 30, 2014
Expect high tides around Jan. 1 and 30, 2014
The July 12, 2014 supermoon isn’t the closest supermoon of the year. For that, you’ll have to wait until August.

According to the definition of supermoon coined by an astrologer, Richard Nolle, over 30 years ago – and popularized only in the past few years – the year 2014 has a total of five supermoons. They are the two new moons of January, and the full moons of July, August and September. Follow the links below to learn about the supermoons of 2014.

What is a supermoon?

What did astronomers call these moons before we called them supermoons?

When are the next supermoons in 2014?

Spring tides will accompany the July, August and September supermoons.

Dates of closest full supermoons in past and future years

What is a Black Moon?

About three or four times a year, the new or full moon coincides closely in time with the perigee of the moon—the point when the moon is closest to the Earth. These occurrences are often called 'perigean spring tides.' The difference between ‘perigean spring tide’ and normal tidal ranges for all areas of the coast is small. In most cases, the difference is only a couple of inches above normal spring tides. Image and caption via NOAA.
About three or four times a year, the new or full moon coincides closely in time with the perigee of the moon—the point when the moon is closest to the Earth. These occurrences are often called ‘perigean spring tides.’ The difference between ‘perigean spring tide’ and normal tidal ranges for all areas of the coast is small. In most cases, the difference is only a couple of inches above normal spring tides. Image and caption via NOAA.
Photographs or other instruments can tell the difference between a supermoon and ordinary full moon. The supermoon of March 19, 2011 (right), compared to an average moon of December 20, 2010 (left). Image by Marco Langbroek of the Netherlands via Wikimedia Commons.
Photographs or other instruments can tell the difference between a supermoon and ordinary full moon. The supermoon of March 19, 2011 (right), compared to an average moon of December 20, 2010 (left). Image by Marco Langbroek of the Netherlands via Wikimedia Commons.
What is a supermoon? We confess: before a few years ago, we in astronomy had never heard that term. To the best of our knowledge, astrologer Richard Nolle coined the term supermoon over 30 years ago. The term has only recently come into popular usage. Nolle has defined a supermoon as:

… a new or full moon which occurs with the moon at or near (within 90% of) its closest approach to Earth in a given orbit.

That’s a pretty generous definition and allows for many supermoons. By this definition, according to Nolle:

There are 4-6 supermoons a year on average.

What did astronomers call these moons before we called them supermoons? We called them a perigee full moon, or a perigee new moon. Perigee just means “near Earth.”

The moon is full, or opposite Earth from the sun, once each month. It’s new, or more or less between the Earth and sun, once each month. And, every month, as the moon orbits Earth, it comes closest to Earth. That point is called perigee. The moon always swings farthest away once each month; that point is called apogee.

No doubt about it. Supermoon is a catchier term than perigee new moon or perigee full moon.

We first became familiar with the supermoon label in the year 2011 when the media used it to describe the full moon of March 19, 2011. On that date, the full moon aligned with proxigee – the closest perigee of the year – to stage the closest, largest full moon of 2011.

When are the next supermoons in 2014? By Nolle’s definition, the new moon or full moon has to come within 361,863 kilometers (224,851 miles) of our planet, as measured from the centers of the moon and Earth, in order to be considered a supermoon.

By that definition, the year 2014 has a total of five supermoons. The first supermoon, for 2014, came on New Year’s Day, with the January 1 new moon. The second came with the new moon of January 30, 2014. The full moons of July, August and September will also be supermoons, by Nolle’s definition. Thus, the next supermoons – aka perigee full moons – in 2014 are:

Full moon of July 12 at 11:25 UTC

Full moon of August 10 at 18:09 UTC

Full moon of September 9 at 1:38 UTC

The full moon on August 10, 2014, will present the closest supermoon of the year (356,896 kilometers or 221,765 miles).

However, the new moons on January 1 and January 30 were not far behind, featuring the year’s second-closest and third-closest supermoons, respectively. On January 1, the moon turned new less than 10 hours before reaching lunar perigee – the moon’s closest point to Earth in its orbit. On January 30, the moon turned new nearly 12 hours after reaching lunar perigee.

Want more detail? Okay. In 2014, the moon comes closest to Earth on August 10 (356,896 kilometers), and swings farthest away some two weeks before, on July 28 (406,567 kilometers). That’s a difference of 49,671 kilometers (406,567 – 356,896 = 49,671). Ninety percent of this 49,671-figure equals 44,703.9 kilometers (0.9 x 49,671 = 44,703.9). Presumably, any new or full moon coming closer than 361,863.1 kilometers (406,567 – 44,703.9 = 361,863.1) would be “at or near (within 90% of) its closest approach to Earth.”

Around each new moon (left) and full moon (right) – when the sun, Earth, and moon are located more or less on a line in space – the range between high and low tides is greatest. These are called spring tides. A supermoon – new or full moon at its closest to Earth – accentuates these tides. Image via physicalgeography.net
Spring tides will accompany the July, August and September supermoons. Will the tides be larger than usual at the July, August and September 2014 full moons? Yes, all full moons (and new moons) combine with the sun to create larger-than-usual tides, but perigee full moons (or perigee new moons) elevate the tides even more.

Each month, on the day of the new moon, the Earth, moon and sun are aligned, with the moon in between. This line-up creates wide-ranging tides, known as spring tides. High spring tides climb up especially high, and on the same day low tides plunge especially low.

The July, August and September extra-close full moons will accentuate the spring tide, giving rise to what’s called a perigean spring tide. If you live along an ocean coastline, watch for high tides caused by these full moons.

Will these high tides cause flooding? Probably not, unless a strong weather system accompanies the perigean spring tide. Still, keep an eye on the weather, because storms do have a large potential to accentuate perigean spring tides.

Dates of closest full supermoons in past and future years. More often than not, the one day of the year that the full moon and perigee align also brings about the year’s closest perigee (also called proxigee). Because the moon has recurring cycles, we can count on the full moon and perigee to come in concert in periods of about one year, one month and 18 days.

Therefore, the full moon and perigee realign in periods of about one year and 48 days. So we can figure the dates of the closest full moons in recent and future years as:

March 19, 2011

May 6, 2012

June 23, 2013

August 10, 2014

September 28, 2015

November 14, 2016

January 2, 2018.

There won’t be a perigee full moon in 2017 because the full moon and perigee won’t realign again (after November 14, 2016) until January 2, 2018.

By the way, some astronomers will call all the full moons listed above proxigee full moons.

But, like you, we’ll have fun just calling ‘em supermoons.

What most call a Blue Moon isn't blue in color. It's only Blue in name. This great moon photo from EarthSky Facebook friend Rebecca Lacey in Cambridge, Idaho. 
What does a full supermoon look like? Astronomers say you can’t really detect any difference with your eye between a supermoon and any ordinary full moon. This great moon photo is from EarthSky Facebook friend Rebecca Lacey in Cambridge, Idaho.
What is a Black Moon? We had never heard the term Black Moon until early 2014. It doesn’t come from astronomy, or skylore, either. Instead, according to David Harper, the term comes from Wiccan culture. It’s the name for the second of two new moons in a month. January 2014, for example, had two new moons. Does a Black Moon have to be a supermoon in order to be called Black? No. You can read more about Black Moons here.

The next Black Moon by the second-of-two-new-moons-in-one-calendar-month definition will occur on October 30, 2016. Sten Odenwald at astronomycafe.net lists some other names for the second new moon in a calendar month: Spinner Moon, Finder’s Moon, Secret Moon.

However, we’ve also come across another definition for Black Moon: the third of four new moons to occur in one season. In 2015, the new moon coming on February 18 will present the third of four new moons in between the December 2014 solstice and the March 2015 equinox. This February 18, 2015 Black Moon will also be the closest new moon supermoon of 2015, but, once again, a seasonal Black Moon doesn’t necessarily have to be a supermoon.

Bottom line: The term supermoon doesn’t come from astronomy. It comes from astrology, and the definition is pretty generous so that there are 4 to 6 supermoons each year. This post explains what a supermoon is, how many will occur in 2014, which moon is the most “super” of all the 2014 supermoons, and gives a list of upcoming full supermoons for the years ahead.

See a supermoon! Awesome photos of the June 2013 full supermoon

check you exact time zone at:http://www.timeanddate.com/calendar/moonphases.html...

Moon phases for UTC in year 2014
www.timeanddate.com
The moon phase calculator shows exact times of the various moon phases for UTC in year 2014 or in other locations and years.