A woman living wild and wonderfully in the West Virginia mountains.
Thursday, October 27, 2011
real live witches!
My headache is gone... Spooky time.
Also, I will no longer post my blog on my personal Facebook page. I am made a new page on Facebook. You can still get notifications if you like the page Crow. The like button is in the column to the right ---->
You know people usually think that modern day witches (Wiccans, Pagans, Herbalist etc) are like these goth like angry people, who worship Satan, and do not believe in God. (I had my own preconceived thoughts long ago) I have to tell you, that modern day witches are just everyday normal people, your neighbors, artists, lawyers, engineers, nurses (lots of nurses), waitresses, event planners, farmers, accountants, and scientists. Some even worship right beside you, yet have their own special set of believes known to them. For example there are Christowitches, Jewitches, Neo-Pagans and the like. Many Native American group's practices fall into very similar beliefs. Many indigenous people faiths or belief systems fall under the Pagan umbrella of religion. Actually, the Catholic faith has many similarities to Wicca on the surface. The incense burning, the many saints they pray to, the rituals in worship, the altars, and so on. But Wiccans usually do not symbolize the ingesting Christ's blood and body in bread and wine. Most have Cakes and Ale, in worship or workings, or in celebration for other reasons. I have attended many a Mass. I was never Catholic, and was not allowed to participate in Communion, but was welcomed to be blessed by the priest, and I took him up on that on a few occasions. Who doesn't want a Blessing? Anyway, just as an example of how much we are the same.
Way off topic, but my point is, we are not weirdos. We are regular people who you interact with everyday. We are kind, giving and open. We follow sometimes even more of a strenuous morality, as we do not follow a typical Dogma or have everything set out and taught to us every Sunday. We are responsible for our every action, every word, and every thought. Not in a guilt ridden way, but in a open loving way.
Witches heal (the earth, people, animals and minerals) and Witches have been taught how to do divination. Some are hereditary, where all of this comes natural. More on that from a personal prospective.
But most of all, Pagans accept that there are many paths to the Divine, and respect that.
Gosh, I am long winded. Even when I am trying to be brief. I really need to take on students this year. Yes I teach. :-O Maybe I should do an online course. Oh and I don't charge money and I don't Proselytize. (Proselytizing is the act of attempting to convert people to another opinion and, particularly another religion.) Wiccans don't do that, neither do I. We offer our services, because that is what we do. We are healers.
Here is a nice reading I found from: Witches Rising. See if you can find any similar traditions that you might follow.
Halloween/All Hallow’s Eve, All Saints Day/Hallowmas, All Souls' Day, Dia De Los Muertos, Diwali, Samhain (sow-en)—must be the season of the witch! This high Sabbat (November 5 in the Northern Hemisphere) began as a traditional Celtic festival marking the end of Summer (light half of the year) and the beginning of Winter (dark half of the year). It is a time out of time, when the veil between the worlds is thin. It is the most magical time of year, when powerful divination is imminent and the dead return to walk among us. It is a time of remembrance, of letting go, and of new beginnings. Here, the wheel of the year ends but the cycle continues...
Deep into the darkness peering, long I stood there, wondering, fearing,
Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before.
- Edgar Allan Poe
• Set up an Ofrenda (family offering altar): Honor and commune with your ancestors during this Festival of the Dead. Gather relics (personal items like jewelry or prayer cards) and photos in remembrance of the departed for your altar. Add candles, flowers, and food offerings to welcome them. Play music that they liked, tell their stories, and share what you learned from them. What is remembered lives!
• Create a magic wand or besom (witch’s broom): Samhain is the most auspicious time to harvest and adorn magical tools. Wands are traditionally made from Oak, Holy, Elm, Walnut, or Willow trees. When you find a branch that speaks to you, take a moment to leave the tree an offering (libations of fertilized water work well) and thank it (they love hugs!). These days, besoms are readily available in most craft stores but they are also fairly easy to make out of Oak, Ash, Willow, Birch or even your favorite herbs (http://craftychickscuppacoffee.blogspot.com/2009/10/crafty-witch-files-how-to-make-besom.html). Both wands and besoms can be adorned with whatever materials you wish. Just be sure to cleanse and smudge all of your materials, focus your energy with good intentions during construction, and consecrate them to your purpose.
• Welcome the Switchy Witch: Have you heard of the Switchy Witch? Not many people have, so you're really lucky! She's a very good witch, you see, and she visits children (and adults who believe) every year on Halloween night. To welcome her, leave a piece of candy on your doorstep or windowsill. Then, leave a cauldron (basket, bowl, or plastic pumpkin works too) with all of your leftover candy on your hearth before bed. Yes, you can keep some, but don't be greedy because she gives all the collected candy to the children who weren't able to trick or treat themselves. In return for your offerings, she leaves you wonderful presents like magic gems and stones, bottles of fairy dust and dandelion wishes, books full of wisdom, sparkly stickers, and magical toys!
• Make corn dolls: Traditional corn dolls or dollies represent the Goddess/God of the harvest. Kept on the hearth or altar throughout winter, they are thought to keep the spirit of the corn (the essence of fertility) safe until it is ploughed back into the Earth in spring. They are easy and fun to make for people of all ages, so get creative! You can even make angel/fairy wings by tying two husks in an X shape onto the back of your finished doll at the waist, then shaping the ends with scissors. http://www.cdm.org/p/viewPage.asp?mlid=30&cid=2&sid=5&aid=90
• Share the harvest: Donate new or unwanted non-perishable items to your local food bank. Having a party? Ask people to bring an item with them, then take a few moments together to bless them with good wishes for the recipient. Find a food bank near you (http://gfn.convio.net/site/PageServer?pagename=foodbanking_find)
THE FEAST OF THE DEAD
Now is the final harvest before darkness reigns and the Earth slumbers. Savor the rich fruits of Fall, use a variety of fresh vegetables and squashes to make a hearty soup, and fill your home with the fragrance of freshly baked breads and pies. Be sure to place an extra setting at the table to welcome loved ones who have gone before and bury an apple or pomegranate in the garden to nourish those spirits who are just passing by.
• Fruits: Apples, pomegranates, grapes, pears
• Nuts and seeds: Acorns, walnuts, pecans, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds
• Vegetables: All varieties of pumpkins and squash, Indian corn, carrots, mushrooms
• Breads and Grains: Cornbread, carrot bread/cake, apple bread, wheat
• Beverages: Hard cider, ale, mead, wine
FLOWERS & HERBS
Fall flowers warm us with shades of gold, yellow, orange, and crimson, but it doesn’t really feel right until you decorate with some traditional reminders of the season like oak and maple leaves, pumpkins, gourds, cinnamon sticks, and pinecones. Appeal to all your senses by creating your own blend of magical fragrances that include deep musks and rich spices to awaken our collective memory.
• Chrysanthemum: Joy, love, protection
• Marigold: Longevity, prophecy, confidence
• Aster: Faithfulness, patience, wisdom
• Dahlia: Transition, dignity, self-worth
• Moonflower: Awareness, vibrancy, spontaneity, flight
• Sage: Protection, immortality, wisdom
• Mugwort: Divination, clairvoyance/scrying, astral travel
• Rosemary: Remembrance, purification, concentration
• Allspice: Healing, luck, money
• Cinnamon: Channeling, psychic power, spirituality
• Nutmeg: Energy, awareness/intention, love
• Cloves: Attraction, love, protection
• Patchouli: Love, fertility, passion