Sunday, July 27, 2008

August 2008

August 2008

1. Friday- Color Rose- Lammas- Birthday of Edward Kelley, the seer of John Dee 1555- New Moon- Solar Eclipse- St. Alphonsus De Liguori Patron of Confessors and theologians.
2. Saturday- Color Brown- Waxing Moon- St Mary of the Angels Patroness of Costa Rica
3. Sunday- Color Gold- Waxing Moon
4. Monday- Color Silver- Waxing Moon- St John Vianney Patron of Priests and Teaching Clergy
5. Tuesday- Color White- Waxing Moon
6. Wednesday- Color Yellow- Waxing Moon
7. Thursday- Color Green- Waxing Moon
8. Friday- Color White- Waxing Moon- St Cyriacus Patron of the Possessed and St Mary, Queen of Hungary Patroness of Hungary
9. Saturday- Color Grey- Waxing Moon- Llewellyn Publishing under new management- St. Emygdius Patron of Earthquakes
10. Sunday- Color Yellow- Waxing Moon
11. Monday- Color White- Waxing Moon- Birthday Edain McCoy witch and author- St. Alexander Patron of Charcoal Makers and St. Claire Patroness of Embroiderers and Television
12. Tuesday- Color Black- Waxing Moon
13. Wednesday- Color Brown- Waxing Moon- Church of Wicca founded in Australia 1989- St Caspian Patron of Stenographers and St. Hippolytus Patron of Prison Guards
14. Thursday- Color Turquoise- Waxing Moon
15. Friday- Color Pink- Full Moon- Birthday Charles Godfrey Leland 1824- St Mary of the Assumption Patroness of Jamaica, France, aircrews, soldiers, South Africa, and New Caledonia
16. Saturday- Color Blue- Full Moon- Lunar Eclipse- St. Stephen of Hungary Patron of Hungary
17. Sunday- Color Amber- Full Moon- Scott Cunningham initiated into Wicca in 1973- St Roche Patron of Contagion, Plague, Doctors, Cattle and Prisoners
18. Monday- Color Black- Waning Moon- Fr. Urbain Grandier accused of bewitching nuns 1634
19. Tuesday- Color Grey- Waning Moon- John Williard and George Burroughs put to death in Salem Witch Trials 1692
20. Wednesday- Color Topaz- Waning Moon- Execution of the Lancashire Witches 1612- Birthday of Ann Moura witch and author- St. Bernard Claireveaux Patron of Gibraltar
21. Thursday – Color Green- Waning Moon
22. Friday- Color Purple- Waning Moon- Pope John the xxii orders Inquisition to seize the property of witches, sorcerers, and those who make wax images for the purpose of witchcraft 1320- Order of the Rosy Cross established 1623- St Mary Patroness of Africa, Angola and Ecuador
23. Saturday- Color Black- Waning Moon- St. Rose of Lima Patroness of Lima, Peru, South America, Philippines, India, Security Personnel and Nurses
24. Sunday- Color Orange- Waning Moon
25. Monday- Color Lavender- Waning Moon- St. Genesius the Comedian Patron of Comedians and Actors and St. Louis of France Patron of Marbles workers, soldiers and masons
26. Tuesday- Color Scarlet- Waning Moon- St Teresa Patroness of the elderly
27. Wednesday- Color Yellow- Waning Moon- St. Monica Patroness of Mothers
28. Thursday- Color Purple- Waning Moon
29. Friday- Color Coral- Waning Moon- Election of Pope Innocent VIII who issued the anti-witchcraft papal bull 1484- St John the Baptist Patron of the River Jordan
30. Sunday- Color Indigo- Waning Moon
31. Sunday- Color Gold- Waning Moon- Birthdays of Raymond Buckland author and witch and Aslinn Dhan Dragonhawk Christian Witch and blog mistress of Aslinn Dhan Dragonhawk Christian Witch and The Christian Witch Almanac- St. Raymond Nonnatus- Patron of Midwives, Children, Childbirth, Pregnant Women and the Falsely Accused

Saint of the Month
St Genesius
Martyr Date unknown

In a play given in honor of the Emperor Diocletian, Genesius sought to mock Christian Faith to entertain the emperor. However in the middle of his act, he was struck by the beauty of God and immediately converted. Diocletian was insulted and had Genesius brought before him. He challenged the man to give up his immediate conversion and he refused. He was tortured having his flesh torn from him with iron hooks and burned but still refused to give up his conversion. He was finally decapitated. His feast day is August 25

Herb of the Month
St. John’s Wort

Used for an anti-depressant and mood elevator. St. John’s Wort is Also picked by girls who wish to dream of their lovers, especially on St. John’s Eve. Be careful using St. John’s Wort. It causes enhanced emotional problems among those already using prescribed anti depressants and renders birth control pills ineffective. Always check with a physician before using any herbal supplements.

Signs of the Month

Leo- July 22- August 23- dramatic, selfish, high maintenance, but can be fun loving and loves to entertain.

Virgo- August 23- September 23- Organized to a fault, reserved and modest, practical and studious high strung and emotional.

Spell of the Month

Anger Stone

A small black stone and some sandalwood oil

Anoint the stone with sandalwood. Intone:

This stone is my anger
Black as Pitch
Harm none says the rede of the witch
I throw this stone far from me
As I will it so mote it be

This spell can be worked for worries, problems, and conflicts.

Throw the stone away.

Tarot of the Month

The Hierophant

This representation of a high Church official represents the querent’s faith, their church of birth but no real understanding of the wisdom beyond the teachings of dogma and catechism. This card suggests that the querent may be afraid they will be excommunicated from their congregation or they will lose faith in what they know if they follow a period of study and inquiry. They must break out of their fear and trust in their Sacred Spirit to guide them through what could be a rewarding spiritual quest.

Essays for August

The Way of Merlin
Boadicea Rainfox

We know Merlin through the legendary tales of King Arthur. Though we understand that the story of Arthur and his knights of the round table and the search for the grail is an allegory, many of us do not understand the significance of the tale in real history. Those of us interested in the Arthurian legend, try to see it in a historical context.

Historically, we do not know if Arthur really existed. We believe that Arthur may have been a regional or tribal king of questionable birth. As he gains power and his story is told and retold, this question of his birth takes a magical turn.

Arthur may simply be symbolic of the move from Celtic Paganism to early Christianity. We can suppose that Arthur may well have been a Pagan in his youth and childhood but later becomes a Christian. It may even be that he converted for the love of Guinevere, who may have been a cradle Christian. He may have converted to stabilize his claim of kingship, if he were chosen by the One God to be king who would oppose him and his rule?

But has Arthur become a Christian in name only? Or has he developed a sense of early Christo-Paganism? This question comes because of his close ties with Merlin, the Pagan counselor. If Arthur was a committed Christian, why didn’t he have a Christian priest as his counselor? This suggests that Arthur may have been clinging to the past of the Pagan culture and faith. This is further supported by the ill fortunes that strike Arthur and his kingdom, suggesting that his clinging to the Pagan past and the use of his wizarding counselor Merlin is the source of all the evil that follows.

But who is Merlin? Many scholars suggest that he was a real person, really two people. The Merlin we know from Arthurian legend may be an amalgam of these two historical men and a generous wash of mythology. Merlin is a Pagan, clinging to the old ways, tapping into the symbol of the source of magic: the earth, which in some Celtic cultures is said to be a great dragon, imbued with all of the elements and the powers of creation.

From the beginning of Arthur’s story, there is Merlin. It is said that Merlin possessed the power of the earth dragon and had the power of creation: the creation of earth and all of its creatures and energies. It is also the power of creation itself. According to the tale, Merlin called upon the dragon and caused Uther Pendragon to transform into Cornwall, his enemy and husband to Egraine, the most beautiful woman of the empire. Uther seduced Egraine in the form of her husband, even as he died on the battle field and that night conceived a son, who was promised to Merlin in exchange for the magic that killed Cornwall and made it possible for Uther to possess Egraine and the kingdom. The problem is, now he is a King of bad repute and bound to be overthrown. The magical sword Excalibur, the sword Merlin gave Uther to symbolize his kingship, was driven into the stone to keep it out of anyone else’s hands. At the moment of the act, Merlin casts a spell on the sword, keeping it imbedded until Arthur would have the opportunity to claim it as his birthright as heir to the throne of the kingdom.

To understand Celtic kingship, you must look to the tales of the Irish and Scottish kings who felt the pull of Christianity later. To be a Celtic king, you must have no blemish, physically or spiritually, even in battle or men who were whole and healthy replaced you. And the kingdom did not always pass through the blood from father to son, but rather to those who had proved themselves in battle and in wisdom.

But Arthur’s place as king is assured because of the sword. The sword was the king’s symbol of the right to rule in Celtic culture. It was only through might that the King had the right to claim his leadership. A king must not only be able to expand his kingdom but to protect it. This strength is endowed by the gods, and later by the Christian God who made kings and gave them “God given” rights to rule absolutely.

The sword, Excalibur, we are told was given to Merlin by the water nymph known as the Lady of the Lake. Merlin calls her out of the waters with his magical connection to the earth dragon. But how does Merlin access the earth dragon? He has a charm, the charm of making.

Let’s just think about the Charm of Making. What does its title mean? What are we making? He is not making anything in and of himself. Merlin is simply invoking the energies of the dragon to come out of the earth and opens a door to invite the energies of creation (the dragon) to come and dwell in the lives of human beings.

Was there a real charm of making? We may never know for sure. The writers of the early legends of Arthur and Merlin do not even speak of a charm like this. Early Celts did not write much in the way of their religion or practice. What little was written was destroyed or lost with first the conquering Romans and then the conquering Christians. Between Pliny and Venerable Bede Celtic religion was a vicious savage religion that was Satanic and evil. What we have a seed of imagination and inspiration. And that, after all is the power of the dragon, the art of creation. We also have a wonderful film called Excalibur.

Excalibur was a film by John Boorman and filmed in Ireland. Ireland, by the way may well have been the fabled Avalon, though some place it on the Isle of Man. In the opening scenes we see a gruesome battle scene with Merlin walking through the smoke and the chaos calmly, as though he walked through a quiet meadow. Uther quarrels at Merlin because he does not come when he is called. He takes Uther to receive the sword and then takes him to parley with Cornwall. The peace is made and they feast. At the feast, Uther sees Egraine and is enraptured with lust. He breaks the peace and calls to Merlin to use his magic to have a night with her. Merlin takes Uther to the standing stones, on top of the hill equal with the entrance of Cornwall’s castle fortress. There he speaks the charm: anail nathrach, ortha bhais is beatha, do cheal deamaimh. The charm is said in Irish and translates to: Serpent’s breath, charm of death and life, thy omen of making.

The question I can hear you asking are: Is this real? Or is it just for the movies? Does it have any cultural facts or it just for entertainment? You can look at it like that. But remember what the charm is meant to do. It is the Charm of Making, calling the earth dragon of creation to release its earth magic to us and take the form of whatever creative project we desire.

For Christian Witches, what might the Christian Charm of Making look like in the Irish language? Dia nathrach, ortha bhais is beatha, do cheal deamaimh. God’s breath, charm of death and life, thy omen of making.

Boadicea Rainfox is a Christo Pagan in London

The Other Red Riding Hood
Gump Brownjug

Rebecca lived in a deep forest in a little cottage. The forest was nestled in the deepest hollow and was inhabited by many creatures and plants and flowers. No one could want for food so long as they knew what plants and herbs they could eat. Few town people made their way into the wood but Rebecca was never afraid because she knew that the wise folk, people we call witches today, lived all around her. Though they lived far apart within the mountains and hollows, they always gathered at the new moon and the full moon to praise the Sacred Spirits and to celebrate the bounty they had from the forests and to teach the younger generation.

Rebecca was such a girl and was excited because on this full moon, she was to become one of the wise people, a witch. She had made a basket of cookies and cakes for the celebration and had also a jar of honey and a jug of wine. She put on her little red cap, the cap of the student and headed out to the meadow where the wise ones always met, where the moon in her fullest looked enormous and gave the innocent children of nature more than enough light for their frolic and worship.

She headed out and walked alone in the deep shadows of the forest. She was not afraid because she knew the forests well and she could see the dark cottages of other people as she made her way to the sabat. Along her way, she heard a noise and sensed some movement. Though she was not afraid, she knew that she must be very aware of the things around her because her teacher had told her that she would encounter a test and how she reacted would tell whether or not she was a good student of the Craft. Suddenly, walking along side her was a large old gray she wolf, loping along as if she had nothing better to do.

“Good evening little sister, where are you going this evening?” asked the Wolf.
“I am going to the sabat, Mother,” she answered the She Wolf.
“I see you have a red cap, are you being initiated this night?” asked the Wolf.
“Yes Mother, and I have brought good cakes and honey and wine,” answered Rebecca.
“You must have wonderful eyes to see through the darkness,” commented the Wolf.
“Not like your own large eyes Mother. Tell me, do all wolves have such eyes as yours?” asked the girl.
“Yes, for we see far into the future and understand the past,” answered the Wolf.
“And those claws, they must be very helpful. Do all wolves have such wonderful claws Mother?” asked Rebecca.
“Yes, for we dig deep for the knowledge of the world and the secrets of the earth,” answered the Wolf.
“And those wonderful teeth, Mother, like athames we use for directing energy and defense against evil. Do you use them that way as well?” asked the initiate.
“Yes, we care for all of the innocent children of nature and guard them all from evil and protect the wild things from disease as we hunt the weakest of them,” said the Wolf.

“You are very wise my Mother Wolf and have taught me much during my walk, for I have never thought of the wolves as one of the wise ones before. Is there nothing I can do for you?” asked Rebecca of the Red Cap.
“You can take me to sabat with you. I have been a witches’ familiar for these many long years and now the crone is dead. I was hoping that one of your teachers would appreciate my service to the wise one and make me human so I can be a teacher, too and live out my life a human,” answered the Wolf.
“I shall take you to sabat and be honored and take you before my teacher, for she is very wise and will surely know what to do in this matter,” said Rebecca.

They walked along in silence and came finally to the moon bathed meadow. The whole group was astonished to see the initiate in the company of such an enormous wolf. She walked quickly to her teacher and made her a little bow and said:

“Teacher, as I was walking to sabat tonight, I met this she wolf and she told me many things. She was the familiar of a wise crone and now her mistress is gone to the Summerland and she wishes to become a human now and live out her days as a wise one and teach her knowledge. Can we help her?” asked the young girl.

“I remember the wise one with the wolf companion and wondered what became of her familiar when she journeyed to the Summerland. You were very brave my little student and took the time to understand the Wolf. You have passed your test and will be initiated tonight. Sister Wolf, your wish will be granted. Brother will you help me?” the Teacher said, motioning to a large man who carried an axe on his belt. He nodded.

The Wolf wheeled around to face the man and stood up on her hind legs. In one swift motion, the man used his axe and opened the chest and belly of the Wolf and out came an older woman, peeling away the skin and standing in the moonlight. The wise ones came to her and led her to a stream and helped her bath and gave her clothes to wear. Rebecca’s teacher turned to the people and said:

“Our sister has no home and needs a place to live out her days. Who among you can take her to your hearth?” asked the wise woman.

“Teacher, I should like to offer my humble home to Mother Wolf if she will stoop to share it with me,” said Rebecca.

“I should be happy to share your home my daughter,” said Mother Wolf.

The night was a great one. Rebecca was initiated and given a black cap in place of her red cap, her cakes and honey and wine were considered superior and she had someone to share her life with and to learn from and the She Wolf got her wish and became a human and a wise one and found a home with a lovely young witch.

Blessed Be
Gump Brownjug is a Faery Witch in New Hampshire and collects old children’s tales and reinterprets them for Pagan Children.
Walking Between Worlds
Dreamwalking for the Practiced Witch.

Dreamwalking is an ancient practice, equivalent to the shamanic journey in its methods and its goals. For the witch, it is a tool that offers a doorway into the subconscious and an opportunity to tap into a deeper sense of personal power. In a practice so focused on balance, this is an invaluable resource. Just as a physician must heal himself before ever working with a patient, so much a witch face the dark reality of what may lie within the hidden corners of the mind in order to be attune with the natural energy.
In my experience with the dreamwalk, a certain level of knowledge regarding the nature of my spirit guides and the landscape of my inner sacred space served as a foundation. In my opinion, this sort of work is vital before ever preparing a dreamwalk. The lower levels of the self have had a reputation for being unpredictable in centuries past. Even when the necessary foundation has been laid, the unexpected will occur. However, to avoid something frightening or even dangerous, pathworking and spirit work are important. If the higher powers do have something important to say in regards to whatever may be asked of them, it helps to have an established line of communication beforehand. They will also act as protectors against personal demons and shadows.

Purpose is the next point to take into serious consideration before going on a dreamwalk. A specific inquiry will yield specific answers A general question will result in vague responses. Just as this is the same with people, this is very true of spirit guides. I suggest in taking at least three days to a week just to think about your true goals. A successful dreamwalk will have a detailed purpose, one that will not only motivate the walker to make preparations and meditate as long as necessary to receive answers, but will inspire spirit guides and possibly even the Divine to intervene with wisdom to aid this quest.

Physical preparations should be taken into account later on, but not forgotten. Clearing and charging a space for use of dreamwalking will aid in raising the level of one’s awareness and ensuring a solid focus for the duration of the meditation. Sacred stones, incense and a comfortable chair are necessities for me on a dreamwalk. I also meditate inside, so to change the mood dramatically from the mundane to the sacred, I shut off the electric lights and light my altar candles.

I am not a big advocate of fasting a great deal before a serious meditation, given my light weight body type, but for those who find it impossible to reach a higher level of consciousness with a heavy stomach, this is also something that should be done.

The dreamwalk itself should not last more than two to four hours. Mine lasted only two. When in a deep unguided meditation, there is a potential risk of “getting lost in your own head.” This is another point where interacting with guides is vital. If your spirit guides are with you on a dreamwalk, they should release you from the meditative state when your goals have been accomplished.

As for enriching what is found, the intuition and the imagination should act as compass points to anyone on this journey. When this two tools act in alignment, a guide or gateway or thoughtform may very well be created to get the process going. The initiator for me was a young faun who met me before I even set foot inside my inner temple.

The results should be vibrant and beyond what you expect. Try to avoid any preconceived ideas of what will take place. It is important to let go of your own will and submit to the Spirit.

When all is said and done, the wisdom gained will be priceless. Furthermore, there is a healing to be won from accomplishing this correctly. Once it is done right the first time, an open door will now exist for you to enter whenever you wish. The possibilities are endless.

Good luck and happy hunting.

Tanith LunaCrevan is a college student, free-thinker and writer from Arkansas. She is a Christo-Pagan, Christian witch and a student of Aslinn Dhan Dragonhawk.