Blog changes

In an effort to get this blog back on track I have simplified it, deleted some of the attached one-topic blogs
and focused on Sabbats and Esbats, which was the original intent.
Other writings will be in 'stumbling upon the path of the goddess'
and the Borrowed Book of Charms is still active.
Links in the right hand column.

Monday, September 29, 2008


More information on the Elements. Fire, the second one that we look at. My personal reflections on the Elements was on 9/5. Air was on 9/23.


Fire is passionate. Fire, more than the other Elements, embodies both life and death, healing and destruction. Fire is projective energy.

The following are associated with Fire:

  • direction: south
  • color: red
  • tool: blade
  • zodiac signs: Aries, Leo, Sagitarrius
  • tarot suite: wands, staffs
  • goddess: Brigit, Hestia, Pele, Vestia
  • archangel Ariel
  • time: noon
  • place: deserts
  • candles
  • sight
  • poppies
  • garlic
  • passion
  • will
  • healing
  • purefication
  • destruction
  • learning
  • energy
  • volcanos
  • salamanders and firedrakes
  • dragons
  • lions
  • horses
  • fire opal
  • almond blossoms

Seek the protection of FIre:

Craft the spell

in the fire

craft it well

Weave it now

of shining flame

none shall come

to hurt or maim,

None shall pass this fiery wall,

none shall pass

no, none at all.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Restless in the autumn...

I goofed off today and just took the opportunity to get outside on a nice fall day. I found myself walking around two different city lakes, about 10 miles apart. The Canadian Geese were restless. Taking off, landing, honking, swimming in circles. We have a large number of these geese that never migrate, but many times that number do migrate from here or just pass thru here. I would be willing to bet that sometime this week we will be down to the permanent residents, the others are much too restless to hang around for much longer.
I watched a small group of geese land in the water near a fishing blue heron. The heron has got to be one of the most expressionless birds of all time. Stoney stare, it's hard to tell a living bird from a good fake. But I would swear he was looking disgusted at the circling, honking geese. He had been standing there motionless for who knows how long and they were practically rioting all around him. I found myself sighing for him.

Just as the seasons are changing for them, they are also changing for us. Samhein marks the end and the beginning of the year. It is a time for reflection on the past year, accomplishments, abandoned goals, good times and bad.
I think our calendar has an advantage over the Christian calendar, which celebrates the beginning of the new year immediately following the huge celebration at Christmas. We have the advantage of celebrating our new year and marking the end of another in a relatively quiet time of the year with time for thought and planning.
Samhein is on October 31.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008


Previously I gave a short overall view of the Elements, mainly my own personal experiences and views (9/5). Now I am going to dig up as much info as I can on each individual Element and then tie things together again.


Air is analytical, creative, free, unemotional. Air requires freedom of expression.
The following are associated with Air.
  • direction: east
  • color: yellow
  • tool: wand
  • zodiac signs: Gemini, Libra, Aquarius
  • tarot suite: swords
  • archangel Michael
  • time: dawn
  • place: mountain tops
  • feathers
  • incense: frankincense, myrrh, flower scents
  • tarot suite: swords
  • divination
  • visualization
  • intellect
  • creativity
  • psychic abilities
  • spring
  • projective energy
  • fragrant flowers and herbs
  • aspen tree
  • music, flutes
  • sound of all kinds
  • flight
  • birds, flying insects, spiders
  • faeries, sylphs and zephyers
  • mica
  • topaz
  • copper

charging spell for wind chimes...

wind chimes

spell rhymes

spell chimes

wind rhymes.

Air primes

spell chimes

nine times


Sunday, September 21, 2008

Harvest 1835

Mabon, the Autumn Equinox, September 22, 2008

At Mabon the Great Horned God feels his power slipping away and prepares to abandon his physical body and begin his annual journey into the underworld. The Goddess is celebrating the bounty of the fertility of her world and observing the harvest. Soon she will mourn him, until Yule when he is reborn.

Mabon, the autumn equinox, marks the end of the long days of summer and the changes of fall. With startling speed the days will grow shorter until the winter solstice in three months. The full moon on the 15th was the second of the three harvest moons, by the third one the harvest will be over and in some areas the first signs of winter will already have arrived.

This is a great time of year to really get connected with the natural world. The weather is still mild and the changes around us are radical. Birds are beginning to gather in large flocks, preparing for their migration south. Trees and other foliage are turning colors right before our eyes. The nights are longer and cooler, making the days also cooler. Clouds gather quickly, threaten rain, separate and roar away. Animals are growing winter coats, sometimes a different color than their summer wear. Squirrels and other small animals that store food for the winter are nearly frantic with their latest prizes, seeking more and new hiding places. The farmer’s markets are bulging out from under their tent canopies. In this area we have lots of squash, apples, peaches and chilies.

Get outside, take a walk, smell fall in the air. Winter is coming and even though it is not the hardship it was for our ancestors, it is still a time of being controlled by the weather and turning inward.

I found a great and simple ritual for celebrating the autumn in Arin Murphy-Hiscock's wonderful book,
The Way of the Green Witch.

Autumn Equinox Harvest Ritual

This ritual honors the earth's produce and bounty and allows you to participate in the season's energy by performing the essential harvesting action. You can harvest something from your own garden or something wild. If you have a lot to harvest, chose the first or the last item you plan to harvest for this ritual. The harvesting tool will depend on what you are harvesting.

sharp knife, secateurs, scissors or shears
small bottle or bowl of water

Standing next to what you are harvesting, reach out with your hand and sense that plant's energy. Say:

I honor you, Earth's Child.
I honor your growth, your flower and now your fruit.
I thank you for your energy.
Blessed Be, Earth's Child.
May I who harvest your fruit be blessed by the act.

With the harvesting tool cut the fruit off of the plant. Sense the energy of the plant when you have harvested its produce. Honor the difference you feel.

Pour the water at the base of the plant in thanks.

Happy Mabon!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Mabon is next week.

Mabon has always had great significance for me, even before I knew it was called Mabon. Although it is considered a minor Sabbat, the autumn equinox marks great changes that we can clearly see for ourselves. The solstices mark the radical changes and the shortest and longest days of the year but the changes at that time are nearly imperceptible, gathering momentum as the season unfolds. The equinox, on the other hand, mark changes that we can see and feel immediately. I have always felt that the autumn equinox was sort of the last deep breath before the plunge into winter. We go from a balance of dark and light to a rapidly darkening season.

Mabon also takes place during the harvest and as such, is a time for celebration.
Have you considered building a special altar for Mabon this year? Something to bring home the changing seasons? If you are lucky enough to live in a rural area or to have a big and well planted backyard, you can probably find enough variety to make a pretty altar very easily. If not, make it a point to stop at a park a couple of time over the next week (Mabon is the 22nd) and do a little scavenger hunting.

You could start your altar with a couple of candles and add a fall leaf or two, an acorn or pinecone, a feather, a bit of a stone, some dried flowers, a stalk of grass or other grain gone to seed. If a shopping trip is in order, some small gourds are nice. Ribbons in colors to express a specific intent are always a good addition to an altar.

My permanent small alter is a smoked glass plate with a small patchouli candle for the God and a small pear scented candle for the Goddess and a small talisman or two. I add other things as the season or my mood dictates. I plan to add a red maple leaf, a pinecone, a nice feather if I can find one and some dried wild flowers.

I am going to have a ritual involving the Elements and the seasons ready for you on Mabon.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Hunter's Moon

The Full Moon is on September 15, 2008 at 05:13 EDT.
Looking through various moon lore I found that the September Full Moon is variously referred to as the Hunter's Moon, Harvest Moon and Blood Moon.

Hunter's Moon and Harvest Moon are used interchangeably for the August, September and October Full Moons. These are the months of harvest and preparation for winter. Blood Moon apparently began with shamanistic practices and is set aside as a time to honor the animals in our lives, both those that we use for food and clothing and those that we live with as companions.
I could only find brief information on the name Blood Moon. Anyone who has more information is welcome to correct this.

There is a reason that the Harvest or Hunter's Moons appear to be a little different from other Full Moons and I found a well written and simple explanation in Wikipedia

"In general, the moon rises about 50 minutes later each day, as it moves in orbit around Earth. All full moons rise around the time of sunset. The Harvest Moon and Hunter's Moon are special because - as seen from the northern hemisphere - the time of moonrise on successive evenings is shorter than usual. The moon rises approximately 30 minutes later, from one night to the next, as seen from about 40 degrees N. latitude, for several evenings around the full Hunter's or Harvest Moons.
Thus there is no long period of darkness between sunset and moonrise, around the time of these full moons. In times past, this feature of these autumn moons was said to help hunters tracking their prey (or, in the case of the Harvest Moon, farmers working in the fields). They could continue tracking their prey (or bringing in their crops) by moonlight even when the sun had gone down. Hence the name Hunter's (or Harvest) Moon."

The August Full Moon is the early harvest, bringing some fruits and vegetables to the table. Now is the time of the full harvest which must be completed in the next few weeks. Winter is coming.

The early rising, large appearance and frequent reddish or orange cast to this Full Moon lends a wonderful mystical feeling. This is the perfect time to go outside and do your rituals under the light of this Full Moon.

Playing Thunderdrums, loud chanting to cast a circle and dancing skyclad in the backyard while the neighbors call the cops is probably too over-the-top for most of us.

A quiet candle spell, a few moments of communing with the Goddess while appreciating the beauty of the Full Moon is certainly possible for many. If you are in need of help from the deities, raising the energy of the earth during a Full Moon and sending your intention out to be fulfilled is an appropriate way to observe this night.

Enter joyfully into this Harvest time. If you are Pagan, thank the Gods that you are Pagan and have the opportunity in your life to learn their ancient wisdom and to connect with nature and the earth.

The end of the year is only about 6 weeks away and it will be time for an accounting of the past year then. For now, enjoy the Harvest.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Time for a little candle magick.....

Let's put the madness of politics aside and do a little calming spell.

Goddess knows I certainly need one.

Light blue is the candle color for quiet and tranquility. White is always a good color and the alternate color for anything. If you don't have either, pick a color that speaks to you of meditation, quiet and calm.

Take the candle in your hands, sit quietly and meditate for a few minutes on your intention.

Draw energy from the earth. Picture the energy flowing from the deep dark earth, to the surface, thru the structures of the building you are in, up thru your feet and into your center.

Feel the power and the energy, focus on it, clear your mind of other thoughts as well as you can. Just let random thoughts float past, ignore them, don't try to make them go away. Focus on the energy you are gathering within you.

Focus on calmness and tranquility. Push this energy into the candle. Visualize the energy you have gathered being transferred and stored in the candle.

Place the candle in a safe holder and light it.

Visualize the light of the candle carrying the energy out like rays of light, spreading the calmness that you gathered. Visualize that calmness spreading like the light of the candle, filling the rooms around you.

Give a quiet thanks to the Goddess for the power of light.

Ground yourself and let any excess energy flow back into the ground. Give a quiet thanks to the Earth for the power that you have just borrowed.

Stay quiet for a moment.

Now go about your business and let the candle burn and do it's work.

Don't leave it unattended, if you need to leave it snuff it out, don't blow it out.

Blessed Be.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Get off your hands and VOTE!

...the red, white and blue...
aaahhhh dammit!!! There goes my nice quiet, get-connected-with-the-cycles-of-the-earth blog. All I wanted to do was some research about Sabbats, about old agriculture beliefs, a little herb lore, some nice quiet moon magick and now look. *sigh*

I can't stand it, I have to say something.
I used to have some respect for John McCain. He seemed like a stand up sort of guy. I didn't agree with him on very many issues, but compared to Bush he looked like a knight in shining armor. I liked Obama. Sometimes sharp new minds can find new solutions to old problems.

I was planning to vote for Obama but I wasn't really excited about the upcoming election...until....McCain finally got desperate enough to throw his self respect out the window and kneel down to the open wallets of the religious right.

How on earth he let them shove Sarah Palin onto the ticket is totally beyond me and I am fairly cynical about the workings of politics.
(just a little side note here...if someone tells me to my face that Sarah Palin is a woman that working women everywhere can identify with I will break their nose.)

I am not going to touch her dysfunctional family. Many of us have one of those, we are all entitled and it does not eliminate one from running for office.

No, I am concerned about her policies and her political history....the recorded version, not the stump speech version.

Palin is an anti-environmental, Pentecostal, Creationist whack-job.

A governor who makes speeches about fighting a 'Holy War' in Iraq, who says in another speech that drilling for oil in the Alaskan wilderness is 'God's will.'

We have had 8 years of a right wing religious nut in the White House and he looks positively secular compared to Palin. Besides, he has been held in check by Chaney who is just an old fashioned war monger and isn't going to let theology get in the way of war for fun and profit.

If you want to see comments on Palin's environmental policy you can start here:
If Greenpeace is too radical for you, check out any environmental site. I'll bet the Audubon Society is spinning.

Her speeches re: 'God's will' are all over the don't have to get the comments out of context, you can hear the whole speech. I don't recommend eating first.

My fear is that the people who are the most appalled at her are also the people who tune out politics. Pagans for one. I am afraid that some Pagans have rejected more than just conventional religions. Scientists for another. I know some real rocket scientists personally, some of them don't know when we are in an election year.

PLEASE, take a deep breath and go vote.
And while there is a time and a place for making a statement and showing that you are fed up with the system .....honestly, this ain't it. Voting for a third party candidate is a vote for McCain/Palin.

Goddess help us all.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

the next Full Moon...

The next full moon is coming up fast, September 15. It is the Harvest Moon also known as the Hunter's Moon.
This is a time of abundance and balance. The autumn equinox (Mabon) is later this month, light and dark are in perfect balance.
It is time to balance your own life, remove clutter and be more receptive to the abundance around you. The energy of the Harvest Moon can help you with this now.

Friday, September 5, 2008

The Elements, some personal reflections

I was going to do a post on the Elements, but I decided to talk about them together and then individually.

I find myself somewhat astonished at how the Elements are treated in ritual after ritual and spell after spell that I read. I find there is either a call the Elements so you can get on to the good stuff...or, possibly even worse....long, long, long demands for the presence of the Elements, couched in archaic language and aimed somewhere into oblivion.

I find this astounding because I, personally, feel a very strong sense of the presence of the Elements and a very strong connection to them. It's one of those things that you just assume that everyone feels the same as you do. It can be a shock to find out that there are actually other ways of thinking about something.

I can remember as a small child chanting, 'Earth, Wind, Fire and Rain'
I have no idea where I got this, but I had it mixed up with prayers. This and other similar mix-ups were the despair of the nuns in my grade school.
I doubt that I read it anywhere, since I was hooked on science fiction from a very young age, not a lot about Earth, Wind, Fire and Rain there. But I heard it somewhere and it stuck as a simple truism.

I have always had a very deep seated belief in the very real presence of these Elements as very powerful entities of raw power. When I discovered that a lot of the things that I believed were actually a religion, I also learned that the Elements were called Earth, Air, Fire and Water. I find that I tend to think of those names as their "formal" names. My childhood names for them still linger as their "real" names.

I am going to indulge myself and describe for you "my" Elements. In later posts I will give you the more accepted information.

Earth is passive. Not terribly interested in humankind, but not in the least malicious. If you can get his attention (Earth is 'he' to me), you can get help in things like calmness, grounding, clarifying your thoughts and connecting to nature, especially if you are willing to do something simple like take your shoes off, walk on the ground and sit and FEEL the ground under you. Earth is very grounding to me, I am a Virgo so perhaps that comes naturally to me.

Air or Wind is female to me. Curious, interested in us, more than willing to get involved. Air wants to bless us all with creativity and learning but will pour things at us faster than we can take in, so she can be overwhelming. She is also somewhat capricious and relates to us as somewhat alien. If we can't keep up, she might just leave without saying a thing.

Fire is neither male or female to me. Fire is the consummate elemental force, equally willing to burn or to help us and not very concerned with our needs. Fire needs to be approach with respect but also from a posture of power and confidence. Fire will take advantage of any weakness and can be hazardous to us. I occasionally gingerly call on Fire for power, but I prefer to just acknowledge the power that is there and not ask anything of it. I feel there is a poltergeist sort of personality in Fire, easily dangerous.

Water or Rain is to me the most powerful of all the Elements, even more so than Fire because she is less erratic. Yes, she is a she and to me the easiest way to connect to the Goddess. Water is also somewhat uncaring about the troubles of humans, but she serves the Goddess and because of that is willing to help us connect to her. I don't feel a great personal connection to Water, but I feel that she is an intermediary to be trusted and appealed to at any time.

When I call on the Elements I call them with respect. I ask them to be present, to be witness, to honor the God and the Goddess with me. Sometimes I ask one or more of them for some particular bit of help or insight.

When I have evoked them for a ritual while I do ask them to be present, I also do tell them to leave. I feel that they don't always pay close attention and once present if I don't make it clear that we are done and they need to go back where they came from, there is a danger that they will just hang around, spreading their own sorts of energy that could cause chaos for me.

I also, because of my childhood habits, sometimes casually call on one or more of the elements for help without any ritual. I never call on Fire this way, but I will the other three.

So this is my personal experience with the Elements. It does not all match with what you will read or hear or find in research. The Elements are more influential in my life than I think they are for many people, this is after all a personal path and will not be the same for any two people.

In the next few blog posts I will pull together some of the information that I have researched about these Entities.


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