My Aunt Michelle made smoked mussels and clams with white wine broth and threw some pieces of French Bread on the grill after spraying them with olive oil. While she was making the final preparations, I sat on the island and stared at the sliced pieces of French Bread across from me… all 8 of them mocking me. I’m glad I had my glass of white wine to keep me company before dinner finally started. I watched Michelle and her husband Dave dump the clams and mussels into the potted broth on the stove…I could smell the aromas of a salty sea shore of the creatures about to be devoured.
The meal reminded me of my Cape Cod trip with my classmates in 6th grade. We stayed at a beach house made for life guards while they were in training. When we had a day to be out on the town, Mr. Day, the principal, bought POUNDS of mussles and 2 loaves af French Bread. He and the teachers cooked while we cleaned up the place and we had so much food we all had to eat on the floor of the livingroom and sat in a circle, the food in the middle. It was the most delicious meal I’ve ever had. Mr. Day told me to dip a piece of my bread in the melted butter then the pot of the mussels where all the juice was. I relished at the taste, I never thought I could discover a food I would be able to eat for the rest of my life, and I had the closest I could get to that tonight.
I didn’t want to stop eating… I wanted it to be my never ending meal. If we had to cook that every night for dinner, I wouldn’t complain one bit. In fact I want to learn how to make it so I can cook it for my boyfriend Ray.
These are basic needs that I believe can make me a better person and help me grow while I’m taking this break from college. For once I don’t have to worry about reports and studying, that’s not my priority anymore just yet. I’m taking my life in a whole new spectrum and I feel these small responsibilities will boost my life with positivity into this new reality I’m living in right now.
“Ritual magic is the taking of energy from another plane of existence and weaving that energy by specific thoughts, words, and practices into a desired physical form or result.”—D.J. Conway, Norse Magic
When I was a little girl, my mom told me that everything happens for a reason. Since then, I have believed it with all my heart and spirit without doubt. It was just me and the girl I take care of here in Vegas, Gianna, for the whole day. We went to Borders where I got a book on Norse magick by D.J. Conway (and with my 10% off discount, the price was $7.77… original lucky number thrice!!) then I trusted my GPS to take us to a place called Smith’s, a grocery store/gas station plaza where I could get discount gas with the card Gianna’s mom let me borrow. As we were driving into the plaza, I noticed there was a Subway next to Smith’s which was awesome because I planned to take Gi there as a treat for lunch today! After I filled my tank, we walked to Subway to eat inside. I noticed just 2 stores down from Subway there was an aromatherapy wellness shop and I made a mental note to step inside once Gi and I were finished with lunch.
When we walked through the doors of the shop, which I noted before we went home is called The Spirit Within U, there were dreamcatchers, candles, books, cards, figurines, and lots of stones around the walls and on the shelves in the store. One of the employees walked up to me and Gianna after we browsed through some of the shelves with warm energy and ultimate kindness. She explained what was around the store (including workshops for dream definitions, chakra healing, card readings, and reiki) and briefly introduced the rest of the people who worked and volunteered there! It was a relaxed place to just hang out and chat; there was a table with a few chairs and a love seat for people to gather around. I noticed there were 2 little boys playing with some rocks and figurines and no one was ticked or worried about the objects getting ruined. The woman (Emily, I think her name is) who welcomed me and Gianna explained that they welcome children to come in and have fun and explore. But of course if there is any sign of danger or rough play, they interfere to not let themselves get hurt or hurt anyone else.
Emily told me that I found their shop for a reason and she just felt my energy blossming, she knew I needed them, and I did. She suggested that I have a short reading with their healing mentor, Des, who works with the Faeries, Angels, and Spirits through cards. I immediately accepted the invitation, and Emily even offered that she and the others would look after Gianna for me while I have my reading in peace. She took Gi to the table and chairs with her friends while I sat with Des as she set up her table. Des had 6 decks of cards for me to choose from and I was torn between 2 so she used her new pendulum to help me out and the deck chosen was the one with the Goddesses. She had me smell 2 oils and take in both scents through my whole body while I began to concentrate on my breathing.
Des told me to imagine my higher spirit 50 feet above my head as a golden light, and inside that golden light was to be a golden, flaming heart. The flame and golden glow was to flow down in a line into my own heart and fill me up with kindess and peace. She told me to keep breathing evenly and calm, and slowly open my eyes. My mind felt almost… numb, though I could feel the energy all around me in the shop much stronger than I had when I first walked in; from Des talking to me, the women and men chatting around the shop and with Gianna, and the children playing with their stones. I was so overwhelmed with the peace, joy, and kindess from the energy of everything in there I was close to tearing in front of Des. I’m now beginning to wish I let myself do so and didn’t hide it from her.
I don’t remember all of the Goddesses I got, but I remember the first one, who was my leading Goddess from the beginning of my Craft practice: Brighid of Ireland who stood for in the card “Don’t back down” (or something like that). The other ones I remember are Green Tara, a goddess representing medicine and healing, 2 others I have forgotten, and the last one was Mother Mary “Expect a Miracle”. Oddly enough, Brighid was my conformation saint when I had no idea she was a triple Goddess, and Mother Mary came up just as I’m beginning to study Catholocism with the Craft. Overall, the Goddess(es) is/are telling me to STOP 2nd guessing myself and just GO with my intuition and to trust her, and learn when to say NO. Des mentioned just because an opportunity arises does not mean I absolutely have to take it, but if I have a problem really knowing intuitively and logically to make a choice, then go to the pendulum, cards, or runes, etc. to help point me in the right direction.
Once I have overcome trusting my inner Goddess completely and know to stand up and choose what is right more for myself, then I will be able to open up to what I am gifted to do to help people and in this case it is healing others in any way I can. Des got the message from the Higher Spirit that I am a gifted healer and I am one of those who wants to help eveyrone in the world. Once I open myself up, I will better understand how to come upon my gift of healing and learn how to use it to help others and myself, and I will recieve a gift like nothing I have ever dreamed of.
Exposure (noun)- I am ready to open my heart, mind, and soul to you Lord and Lady. I am willing to surrender myself to you both. With light and love, goodnight and Blessed Be.
im sorry i totes missed the question in there lol yes it touches on the basics of magick, elemental magick, and natural magick (ie. stone magick, magnet magick, candle magick, star magick, snow magick, ice magick, mirror magick, wishing well magick, and sea magick) another great book of his that i do use for reference all the time is his Encyclopedia of Magical Herbs. it's great for looking up herbal correspondences for making incense and oils, and knowing which herbs are best for certain situations and spells
Haha it’s alright! Ooooh very nice!! I might get that today when I take the little girl I’m naany-ing to Borders. Then again there are so many Craft books I haven’t finished yet and I feel I should finish those first instead of procrastinating reading them by buying more books » What do u think?
Delaware Wiccan Speaks Out on Christine O’Donnell By Katy Steinmetz
“I am not a witch.” Only in the ever-wackier 2010 election cycle would a campaign video start with such an assertion, but this particular ad was for Delaware’s Republican Senate candidate Christine O’Donnell, whose recent admission that she “dabbled in witchcraft” as a teen has brought toil and trouble to the Wiccan community. To find out more about the Wiccan religion — which bases its belief system on witchcraft — TIME spoke to Michael Smith, a Wiccan high priest and IT consultant from O’Donnell’s home state.
How long have you been involved with your coven, and what do you do to practice your faith? In 1993 I moved to Georgetown, Del., and joined the Coven of the Rowan Star, which is in a larger tradition called the Assembly of the Sacred Wheel. The religious life is based on eight holidays — the wheel of the year — this cycle of nature that runs through the seasons, based both on nature itself and its reflection in the light of a human being. It’s the cycle of rise and fall, and change and growth, and evolution.
And what kind of rituals do you engage in? There are a variety of things people practice and learn. Wicca itself holds that what would commonly be referred to as “supernatural” or “paranormal” is actually part of the normative cycle of life that we’ve forgotten how to access. So we do that through techniques, both ancient and modern — whether that’s learning about Shamanic practices or more ceremonial ideas to simple matters of meditation or daily devotion to the gods and goddesses.
What does a high priest do? A high priest or high priestess of a coven is both the spiritual and religious leader of that particular group. I teach classes, provide pastoral counseling, arrange the schedule, write the rituals. Obviously I get help and input, but ultimately, high priests and priestesses are responsible for the health and the growth of the individuals. It took me about 10 years of work to come to that particular point.
How big is your coven? The coven right now has 18 members. In the larger tradition’s eight covens, there are a little over 100 members. It’s by no means the largest contemporary Pagan group I can think of, but is definitely one of, if not the largest single group in Delaware.
Among those Wiccans in Delaware, how has the reaction been to Christine O’Donnell’s comments? There was a lot of eye rolling. It obscures the actual issues involved [in Wicca]. Who knows what she did or dabbled in when she was in high school. I doubt very seriously that she knows what it was. Certainly I do not think that she has any concept about what witchcraft, Wicca or paganism actually is. I doubt very seriously whether she has any concept of what Satanism actually is. (Read Mark Halperin’s take on O’Donnell’s primary win.)
How did you react to her conflation of witchcraft and Satanism? [O’Donnell said her dabbling included having a picnic on a bloody Satanic altar.] One grows accustomed to it. It’s a ridiculous and childish and uniformed conflation. Most monotheistic religions, as they encounter other paths and belief systems, tend to want to confuse those with their own conceptions of what is evil. Satanism is a Judeo-Christian-Islamic concept. To be a Satanist, one must believe in Satan. We don’t do that. It’s not part of our belief system at all.
In the past, has your group been involved in secular politics? We are a 501(c)(3) non-profit religious organization. As an organization, we make no comment. But as individuals, we certainly are involved in politics. Within our structure, we have a code of ethics. We have an idea about the sanctity of life, about personal responsibility, the importance of treating human beings with respect. The divine nature of the world around us, the importance of environmental issues, of the freedoms of religion and assembly — those are an important part of what we believe.
How does that factor into your feelings about O’Donnell in this election cycle? My biggest issues with Christine O’Donnell have nothing to do with witchcraft. It has to do with her desire to blur the lines between church and state, her very laissez-faire idea about economics and her desire for the government to be involved in people’s personal choices around sexuality and morality.
Do you find these are things that people in the Wicca community generally agree on? Yes, but [we have] Democrats and Republicans and Independents and Socialists and what have you. People’s particular political beliefs are not as important as their religious and spiritual beliefs as far as being a member of the coven. Obviously if you’re not the kind of person who believes in the sacredness of earth and the environment around us, it’s not likely that you’re going to find our particular belief system very satisfying. But I have never made any kind a political belief a prerequisite for membership.
But not conflating Wicca with Satanism probably is a prerequisite. For those people who want to conflate them, who need to define the world in very, very narrow terms — that something is either my particular brand of Christianity or it’s Satanic — no amount of explanation or logic or conversation is going to change their minds. It’s when one begins to misrepresent [that there’s trouble]. Misrepresentation leads to fear, which leads to depression, oppression, and repression. And for me, that’s the danger of somebody like Christine O’Donnell.
In the new house where I have moved into for the year in Vegas, I was able to set up an actual altar of my own in my bedroom! I’ll take a picture soon and post it up here, I promise. It’s nothing fancy, just has the basic essentials, and inside the table where I have it set up, there are 2 drawers where I keep my books, herbs, rocks, etc. I’m hoping I will make time to do something in my little altar space tonight; the Gods are long overdue for a few offerings and a decent circle ritual. I have much to thank them for what I feel I have not thanked them enough.
Yesterday the couple that I live with and myself took a trip to go to Mount Charleston for a lunch at the popular lodge up there and we were going to go for a hike, but it ended up raining quite a bit in the mountains so we had to literally make a rain check to go hiking next time. As we drove up the mountain, I was reminded of home right away- it was cooler, there were trees that changed color, and the log cabins that were built there for rent/sale, I didn’t want to leave. I dreamed of owning one of those cabins high in the mountain in the middle of all the trees with my boyrfriend, as we both want a cabin in the woods.
I can’t wait to go back and reconnect with my familiar natural habitat and reconnect with my spirituality in deeper senses. I hope to live in the mountains like that some day. Even back home where I have a mountain to hike that’s pretty much my back yard, I still feel this disconnection between myself and nature at times, and it makes me sad to notice that. If I lived smack dab in the middle of the woods, nature would surround me always, and I would have to literally live it, breathe it, and pray it. Another advantage to living in the woods, I think, is learning about the simple things in life and how to let them inflict your everyday lifestyle so then that’s what it becomes. My boyfriend and I make jokes all the time how we want a Victorian mansion and have it Addam’s Family style, but if all we could afford was a house in the woods and just enough food for us to get by, that would be enough for me. I would have my love and my home in more ways than one.