Daily Archives: May 21, 2012

‘THINK on THESE THINGS’ for May 21

‘THINK on THESE THINGS’
By Joyce Sequichie Hifler

Regret is something everyone has, but no one can afford to keep. Being remorseful is commendable when we should be sorry for wrong behavior, but to live with regret is to add to it day by day. There are those who are unable to admit they have ever been wrong. But there are more who carry with them so much regret they are bowed in spirit.

Thomas Moore, the Irish poet, once said, “Remorse is beholding heaven and feeling hell,” but perhaps just knowing heaven can exist makes regret more hellish. And so often it renders the regretful almost powerless to lift themselves out of their predicament.

But there is forgiveness! A daily vow or affirmation can take us a step further in lifting ourselves above the things that cause regret. And if we’ve settled down in the middle of unhappiness to enjoy our lot in life, then, moment by moment, inch by inch, we shall overcome that, too!

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Available online! ‘Cherokee Feast of Days’
By Joyce Sequichie Hifler.

Visit her web site to purchase the wonderful books by Joyce as gifts for yourself or for loved ones……and also for those who don’t have access to the Internet: http://www.hifler.com
Click Here to Buy her books at Amazon.com

Elder’s Meditation of the Day
By White Bison, Inc., an American Indian-owned nonprofit organization. Order their many products from their web site: http://www.whitebison.org

 
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Elder’s Meditation of the Day May 21

Elder’s Meditation of the Day May 21

“A vision could put you on a path you don’t want to follow.”

–Archie Fire Lame Deer, LAKOTA

There is a saying, “You move toward and become like that which you think about.” If we keep thinking about a bad thing, we will move in that direction. If we think about fear in some area of our life, we will probably experience this fear. We move toward and become like that which we think about. If we think about secret things, these secret things will come to pass. Our visions are very powerful. Visions determine our direction, our lives. If you think about lustful things, it’s a matter of time before you’ll be wrestling with it. We should think about our visions to make sure they include the Great Spirit in every area.

Great Spirit, today, give me Your vision to follow.

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May 21 – Daily Feast

May 21 – Daily Feast

Many are gamblers without knowing it. They demand their right to do something – even when it is not expedient. We can insist on our right to turn at the stoplight, but if someone else has never heard of our right and takes his chances at going through, it is dangerous business. Having rights holds only of the responsibility of them goes with it. Sometimes a right is a privilege we don’t dare demand. The Cherokee calls this u na du da lv, acting in a way that is mature and careful of others. Some people tend to believe they are above the basic rules of living. But when life drops a rock on the one who so freely takes advantage, it can be a well-deserved rock. It reminds us to stay within the limits of everything from good taste to common sense.

~ The good road and the road of difficulties you have made me cross; and where they cross the place is holy. ~

BLACK ELK

‘A Cherokee Feast of Days’, by Joyce Sequichie Hifler

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Daily OM for Monday, May 21st – Trial and Error

Trial and Error
Learning to Trust Divine Guidance

by Madisyn Taylor

 

Keeping an open mind is the most important step when learning to listen to divine guidance.

Anyone who has asked for divine guidance knows that it can be challenging to trust it when it comes. This is because divine guidance comes in many forms and it is sometimes hard to locate it. We aren’t sure if we are meant to trust our thoughts, our feelings, our dreams, or our intuitions to be the carriers of divine wisdom. We are not sure if advice from a friend is the form in which the guidance has come into the world, or if our own opinion is the source of wisdom we need to take seriously. The ability to sort all this out comes with trial and error, and the best way to learn to recognize divine guidance is to engage in the process of asking and receiving.

Sometimes when we ask for guidance, we already have a sense of what we want to hear. At such times, receiving guidance can be difficult, because we don’t want to hear anything that appears to be in opposition to our desire. Therefore, one of the most important qualities we need to cultivate if we are to receive guidance is an open mind. It helps to acknowledge what we want, and then to symbolically set it aside, making room for whatever wisdom comes through to us.

Cultivating an active relationship with the divine is the essential ingredient to being able to receive and trust guidance when it comes our way. We can make a daily practice of this by using a set of runes, a deck of cards, or a pendulum. We can also use our journals, developing a relationship with the divine through the written word. As we request and receive guidance, we might take notes on our experiences. Over time we will begin to recognize when we were able to hear correctly and when we were not. In this way, we will gradually attune ourselves to our particular relationship with the divine. Begin to trust the guidance you are receiving and soon you will find it flowing with ease.

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Special Kitty of the Day for Monday, May 21

Name: Jet
Age: Seventeen years old
Gender: Male
Kind: Domestic Short Hair
Home: Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Jet has been a special cat his whole life. It started the day I met him. I was looking into adopting another cat (Jasper) from a local cat rescue organization and was at the foster parent’s home to have a look at him. I was sitting on a sofa and all of a sudden I got tapped on my shoulder. I turned my head and saw a young black cat sitting there, looking at me. He was so friendly and outgoing that I knew right away he would make a good therapy cat, something that I had started to do a few years earlier with another cat. I asked if he was up for adoption; he was, so I went home with two cats that day. I had no idea what to name this kitten, but when I saw him flying through the house it became quite clear- he was black and he was fast. So his name became Jet.

Since Jet was only six months old we had to wait another six months before I could have him tested as a pet therapy cat with PALS (Pet Access League Society), our local pet therapy group. He passed the test with flying colors, and soon started coming with me to the Children’s Hospital. He became an instant hit as cats are not usually seen doing pet therapy work. But Jet took it all in stride, and actually loved going to see the kids. He would go and sit on their laps, nuzzle them and sit very still while they stroked his soft fur. One touching story involves Jet and a young boy who had just come out of a coma. The boy had not spoken at all, but when he saw Jet at a PALS visit, he spoke his first word, “kitty”. His parents were in tears, as was I when they told me that this was the first word their son had spoken since he had come out of his coma. This is just one of many touching moments that pet therapy pets are involved in.

After ten years Jet received his special PALS scarf for his ten years of service. He was one of the first pets to receive it, and when he retired was the longest serving pet volunteer with PALS. Forward to thirteen years of pet therapy work, and I receive an email from a person involved with the MEOW Foundation, the rescue group from which I adopted Jet, that she wanted to nominate Jet for an award for all his years of pet therapy service. So Jet was nominated for, and won, the 2009 Volunteer Calgary Animal Volunteer of the Year award for his thirteen years as a pet therapy cat. He was the only animal present at a huge banquet dinner where all the other (human) award recipients received their awards. Of course he wore his red bow tie to this fancy banquet!

Sadly, Jet fell ill soon after the awards and was retired as a pet therapy cat. Jet just turned seventeen, and his health is continually declining. His spirit is still willing and he is still just as friendly as he has always been, but his body is getting frail. When he does pass to the Rainbow Bridge, Jet will be remembered by many people for his pet therapy contributions.

There will never be another cat like Jet, he is one in a million.

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Precious Pup of the Day for Monday, May 21

Name: Nala
Age: Two months old
Gender: Female Breed: Golden Retriever, Labrador Retriever
Home: Seven Fields, Pennsylvania, USA
Nala is absolutely full of energy and is mischievous but she is such a loving dog that loves kisses, hugs, laps and to be held. She already sleeps great at night and is a hit with the neighborhood kids and dogs. We can’t wait to see what she turns into. Right now it looks to be more lab but only time will tell. But we do know that she will provide lots of love and fun to this family for many years.

Nala is a Golden Retriever mix. Her dad was pure bred Golden and her mom was half Golden Retriever and half Black Lab. We lost our fourteen-year-old Golden Retriever about two months ago and Nala lovingly fills that void. She is incredibly intelligent. In just four days of having her home with us she learned numerous words including: home, inside, outside, sit, bedtime, our “potty words” and the obvious “no“.

She is potty training great and now goes to the door and whines but we have to move fast! She does great in her crate with little complaint and has slept through the night since the first day we got her. She listens to and watches everything from the lawnmower to a someone sawing. She doesn’t always like these new things but watches intently to try and figure them out.

She has many favorite toys but especially loves my kids old Webkinz animals. Perfect for her size and little teeth for now. She loves kids with no hesitation. She is more apprehensive with big people but warms up within seconds. We love her very much!
 

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About the Celtic Month of The Hawthorne Tree

The Hawthorne Tree

FOLKLORE & PRACTICAL USES: HAWTHORN

by Muirghein ó Dhún Aonghasa (Linda Kerr)

Crataegus oxyacantha- English Hawthorn. Found in England and continental Europe.

The hawthorn is easily recognized by its branches, covered with long, sharp thorns. Its small, usually white flowers bloom in May, earning it the additional name of May or Mayblossom, although in the southern U.S. it usually blooms in April (the ship Mayflower was named after the hawthorn). Its generic name, Crataegus oxyacantha, is derived from the Greek work kratos, meaning hardness (of the wood), oxus , meaning sharp, and akantha , meaning thorn. The old German name for the tree, Hagedorn , means Hedgethorn; the word haw is also an old word for hedge (1).
The red fruit, or haw, which appears in late summer, resembles a miniature stony apple. The wood makes an excellent fuel, making the hottest wood fire known, and in the past was more desirable than oak for oven-heating (2).
To the ancient Greeks and Romans, the hawthorn was a symbol of hope and happiness, and was linked with marriage and babies. Hawthorn was dedicated to Hymen, god of marriages. The torches carried in the wedding procession were made of hawthorn. People would put a sprig of hawthorn in their corsages, while the bride carried an entire bough (3). This also helped to appease the goddess Cardea, who did not like weddings, especially in May. In England, May was considered a lucky month for engagements, though not for marriages.
Later, in Medieval Europe, it was thought to be an evil and unlucky tree, and foretold a death in the house if brought inside. The hawthorn was considered one of the witches’ favorite trees, and on Walpurgis (Beltane) night, witches turned themselves into hawthorns. “With a little superstitious imagination, the hawthorn’s writhing, thorny branches at night probably do look enough like a witch to have instilled fear in medieval folk (4).”
In Ireland lone hawthorns belong to fairies, who meet at and live inside them. Many dire things are predicted if a lone thorn were disturbed in any way, among them illness and death. The Irish believed the fairies spread their washing across the thorn to dry. Ireland also has sacred hawthorns at holy wells, on which rag offerings are left (5). According to Geoffrey Grigson, the haws are also called ‘hags, (6)’ and might be a connection with the old Irish Hag-Mother, whom it was said that the rags and clothes were meant for.
The most famous hawthorn of all is the Glastonbury Thorn. It is Crataegus monogyna var. praecox , putting out leaves and flowers in winter and again in May. According to the Glastonbury legend, the Crown of Thorns was made of hawthorn. Later, it was added that Joseph of Arimathea stuck his dry hawthorn stick into the hill, where it at once grew, and ever after bloomed on Christmas Day (7).
The hawthorn is associated with May Day more than any other plant. On most May Days the hawthorn was already in full bloom, before the British at last changed the calendar in 1752 and adopted the New Style. May Day now comes thirteen days earlier (8).
Hawthorn was gathered on May Day morning, interwoven, and placed on doors or windows. The interweaving was important, since the power of magical plants was always increased by weaving them into various shapes. The magic of the hawthorn had already been increased during the night by the dew, which the country people always considered a magic fluid, especially on May Day morn (9).
On May Day, fairies and witches were abroad, and just as excited as humans by the beginning of summer. Milk and butter were likely to be stolen or bewitched. In Ireland, the rowan was the surest protector against this, while in England and France, the protective plant was the hawthorn (10).
Sex and fertility were very much a part of the old May Day celebrations, and were symbolized by the hawthorn. The stale, sweet scent of the flowers makes them suggestive of sex. This same smell led to the belief that hawthorn flowers had preserved the stench of the plague. The flowers contain trimethylamine, which is an ingredient of the smell of putrefaction (11).
Today hawthorn may be the source of an important cardiac medicine. Scientific research has shown that hawthorn dilates blood vessels, allowing blood to flow more freely, lowering blood pressure. It also regulates heart action, acting directly on the heart muscle to help a damaged heart work more efficiently. It works slowly and seems to be toxic only in large doses, making it a relatively safe, mild tonic (12). When administered properly, hawthorn is good for a heart muscle weakened by age, for inflammation of the heart muscle, for arteriosclerosis, and nervous heart problems.
At home, the hawthorn flowers and berries can be decocted (boiled) and drunk for a sore throat. They are also helpful in kidney trouble, acting as a diuretic. The berries can be made into a tea, which is good for nervous conditions and insomnia (13).
An excellent liqueur can be made from the berries or flowers. This recipe using the flowers dates back to about 1775. May Blossom Liqueur: Try to gather the may blossom on a dry, calm day when there is no dust flying about. Pick as much as a preserving (quart) jar will hold. Fill it up with brandy or vodka. Close the jar and shake it 3 times a week for 3 months. Filter and if necessary add sugar to taste. The resulting liqueur is excellent in custards and sauces (14).Sources:

1 Grieve, Mrs. M. A Modern Herbal (2 volumes). 1931. Dover Publications, Inc., New York, NY, pg. 385
2 Ibid, pg. 385.
3 Lust, John. The Herb Book. 1973. Bantam Books, New York, NY.
4 Ibid.
5 Grigson, Geoffrey. The Englishman’s Flora. 1955. Phoenix House LTD, London, England, pg. 169.
6 Ibid, pg. 166.
7 Ibid, pg. 170.
8 Ibid, pg. 168.
9 Ibid, pg. 168.
10 Ibid, pg. 167.
11 Ibid, pg. 168.
12 Rodale’s Illustrated Encyclopedia of Herbs. Edited by Claire Kowalchik and William H. Hylton. 1987. Rodale Press, Emmaus, PA, pg. 275.
13 J. Lust.
14 van Doorn, Joyce. Making Your Own Liqeuers. 1980. Prism Press, San Leandro, CA, pg. 72.

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The Hawthorne 

LUNAR ENERGIES & ESOTERICA

As Dictated by Epona to Imré

Huath – Hawthorn – is the sixth lunar tree/month of the year. The Yin or female energies have subsided and the yang or male energies are on the up- swing. This is the perfect time of the year for people to begin to utilize and collect the Yang that is needed, because the energy is not yet strong enough to blow us out of the water, but is just strong enough to begin using. Women will find that the men around them have become irritable and testosterone-ridden – be warned, ladies, that this is the last chance that you are going to get, before the cycle of Yin returns, to establish the balance in the home.
This is also a good time to practice abstinence; for Hawthorn is the moon of purification and creative (as opposed to fertility-oriented) uses of sexual energies. We have found that women who indulge in the increase in their sexual appetites will feel the repercussions of their actions during the summer (around the Summer Solstice in particular) as “female problems.” Use this increased sexual energy to form a stronger bond with Nature. You will find it easier to contact spiritual guides, or ‘the Masters.’ Just as your energies are easily released at this time, so are Nature’s.
Folklore tells us that at this time of the year priests would go out into their church- yards and beat the surrounding stones in order to form a boundry and to keep evil spirits away. However, according to myths that originated in times when standing stones commonly created the physical boundaries around magickal circles, that the stones were struck so as to “wake them” or charge them (see Needles of Stone Revisted, Tom Graves). This would create the astral boundries. What does this mean? Well, it is now the time to begin understanding who you are and how you are developing. This will begin to happen as you go to Nature, yet, along with your pilgrimage comes the need to realize your basic physical limitations brought about by this incarnation. You must transcend them by imploding, or going within your being and discovering how unlimited you are within. Discover the mysteries of You. This is that time of year.

For further research, look up these points:

Vestal Virgins
Cardea (goddess)
Lady Godiva

(This is what we have come to know and understand. We would like to hear from those who have experienced it differently or would like to add to what we have. You never stop learning! – Epona, High Priestess of Faerie Faith)

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