Daily Archives: June 4, 2012

‘THINK on THESE THINGS’ for June 4

‘THINK on THESE THINGS’
By Joyce Sequichie Hifler

Irritation, they say, is something gentle folk should never know. Always passive, they go along the way smiling, no matter what the cost to feelings. But have you ever tried to smile when all the street lights are red and someone honked loudly when you failed to move quickly enough.

Have you heard a politician slur the name of your candidate….and had a promise broken without so much as a faint explanation. Or perhaps the long explanation on how to do something you’ve done for years….and suddenly you want to make two lists of people you like and people you don’t like!

And maybe you’ve answered the telephone and heard them hang up simply because your voice was not the right voice….Or had them stand back empty handed while you with your packages opened the door for them?

Well, it’s no easy matter to be gentle folk and the mildest can get angry all over again by just thinking of an injustice. Perhaps it is trifling to let such little things irritate. But the best of us feel the small things that we never quite get over. We forgive and forget except to think about it occasionally, and then we must consider the words of Seneca, “Anger, if not restrained, is frequently more hurtful to us then the injury that provokes it.”

We live in a continual round of adjustments. It is usually an admirable thing to be able to make adjustments easily. Not many can. And, yet, it makes us wonder at times if those who can so freely change and moved without emotions have ever felt very deeply.

We tend to cling to familiar things and familiar customs. There is a great security in traveling a way we know by heart. The roughest road can usually be traveled without incident when we know every turn and bump.

It had been said by those who do scientific research that it takes at least three weeks to adjust to changes. But three months would do it more justice. And it must be done by abandonment, by setting aside for a period of time all things like the old way. Many times it is done not for ourselves alone, for it is foolish to believe a change involves only ourselves.

In our very complex way of life there is no situation to affect only one person. And often the most wonderful thing we can do for someone else is to find our own balance by making adjustments quickly, even in the middle of chaos.

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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 June 4

Elder’s Meditation of the Day June 4

“Wakan Tanka never stops creating.”

–Archie Fire Lame Deer, LAKOTA

The Medicine Wheel teaches about change. It says that which is created will fall apart; that which is loose, will be used to create new. In other words, everything on Earth is participating in a constant change that is being directed by an order of laws and principles which were originated by the Great Spirit. We humans are equipped with natural change abilities. We have the ability to vision; we can use imagination and imagery; we can change belief, attitude, habits and expectations. We need to know ourselves and we need to know how we work inside to enable us to change naturally.

Great Spirit, teach me to change in harmony.

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June 4 – Daily Feast

June 4 – Daily Feast

What is so strange about using our words to build? Doesn’t it make more sense to build something than to tear down? Who is closer to us than ourselves – other than Above-the-Sky, Galun-lati! We spend most of our time listening to our own words – words that go into our ears to build or tear us down. Sometimes they whisper in our silent talk, sometimes we say them and they affect us deep in our hearts. Confidence may come because of what someone else told us, but it is maintained by what we tell ourselves. We boot it every time we say we can do what we once thought impossible. We lose it by confirming what fear told us is true. Talking can change our circumstances when we change the words.

~ Tecumseh said to Big Warrior, “I will stamp my foot on the ground and shake down all your lodges.” (An earthquake struck and tumbled the village.) ~

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

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Happiness is here now

Happiness is here now

Happiness is here now, today. Live it.

The possibilities for greater and greater fulfillment are immense and amazing. Explore them, and claim the best for your own by acting on them now.

If there’s something you’ve been meaning to do, now is the time to get moving. If you’ve been wanting a change for the better, now is when you can make that change happen.

Your dreams and desires are real and alive in this moment. Use this time to follow where they lead.

Your unique and priceless journey has brought you now to this point. Pay sincere tribute to all that rich experience by making meaningful use of it on this day.

Happiness and joy and fulfillment are now yours. Live them today in your own special way.

— Ralph Marston

The Daily Motivator

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Daily OM for June 4th – Prayer and Meditation

Prayer and Meditation
Asking and Receiving

by Madisyn Taylor

 

Meditation and prayer can offer us different experiences and both can be powerful tools.

Prayer and meditation are similar practices in that they both offer us a connection to the divine, but they also differ from one another in significant ways. Put simply, prayer is when we ask the universe for something, and meditation is when we listen. When we pray, we use language to express our innermost thoughts and feelings to a higher power. Sometimes, we plumb the depths within ourselves and allow whatever comes to the surface to flow out in our prayer. At other times, we pray words that were written by someone else but that express what we want to say. Prayer is reaching out to the universe with questions, pleas for help, gratitude, and praise.

Meditation, on the other hand, has a silent quality that honors the art of receptivity. When we meditate, we cease movement and allow the activity of our minds and hearts to go on without us in a sense. Eventually, we fall into a deep silence, a place that underlies all the noise and fray of daily human existence. In this place, it becomes possible for us to hear the universe as it speaks for itself, responds to our questions, or sits with us in its silent way.

Both prayer and meditation are indispensable tools for navigating our relationship with the universe and with ourselves. They are also natural complements to one another, and one makes way for the other just as the crest of a wave gives way to its hollow. If we tend to do only one or the other, prayer or meditation, we may find that we are out of balance, and we might benefit from exploring the missing form of communication. There are times when we need to reach out and express ourselves, fully exorcising our insides, and times when we are empty, ready to rest in quiet receiving. When we allow ourselves to do both, we begin to have a true conversation with the universe.

Daily OM

 

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WOTC Funny of the Day – Anger Management

Witchy Cartoons

~Magickal Graphics~

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Lighten Up – You Finally Know You are a Witch When

You Finally Know You are a Witch When…

© 1998 Connie Gilbert

You finally know you are a witch when…

1. Your BOS has spots on the pages from spilled brews.

2. When cleaning house you have to specify. “Where is the broom? No, not the broom, where is the one to clean the floor with?”

3. Candle wax has dripped on your keyboard.

4. There are more jars of strange smelling plants in your cupboards than there are cereal boxes.

5. Friends know they can always give you candles and incense as a gift.

6. When watching old re-runs of Bewitched, you find you side with Samantha’s mother Endora.

7. When travelling, stranger and stranger strangers tell you their problems.

8. You find yourself making corn dollies in the checkout line at the grocery store (well, I thought about it).

9.You ask for Halloween off, because it’s a religious holiday.

10. You start answering the phone with “Merry Meet”.

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In The End, We’re All Solitary


Author: Chi

I’m not bashing coven practice here – It’s a wonderful spiritual path and way of learning and it works for lots of people. Those people have my blessings and all my best wishes. There are plenty of teens that someday want to be part of a coven, and there are dozens of adults who warn against teen groups (and even several of articles on Witchvox about it) . But if solitary practice is so wonderful, I have to ask myself why no one advocates it, at least not until asked or provoked. That’s what I will attempt to do, to go over some of the things that solitaries have the opportunity for, and even solitary fundamentals that anyone can use.

After all, you are an individual. In the end, you are solitary. And I don’t mean that in a bad way, I mean it in the most glorious way possible. At the end of the day, the Divinity shines down on YOU and recognizes YOU for what YOU are, and takes you into their arms as their child with your own uniqueness and respects you for every ounce of it.

But I’m getting ahead of myself. There are many people who consider themselves to be solitary Wiccans or solitary Witches. I almost want to say there is a majority – but I don’t have the statistics on hand to back that up, just my observation.

Most practitioners consider it a long-term goal to be able to get into a coven or other pagan group. Even though there are sometimes degree systems in place for covens, being a solitary is usually considered being “at the bottom of the food chain”, so to speak.

Some people are solitary because they choose to be, they know it is the best for their learning and they know it is better to study alone then with people that have the potential to delay your spiritual definition. Others are solitary simply because they have to be, there are no covens around, they are too young to join a ‘real’ coven, they do not have enough experience, or what have you.

I personally am some blend of the two. I began really studying and dedicating myself to “this path” a few years ago. I knew that I needed to study; I believed I had to have every rule memorized if I was ever to reach the glorious rank of a coven member.

However, since that time I have come to realize many things. First, I am not only a Wiccan. I am also Buddhist, Hindu, Christian, Shinto, and a multitude of other things…so joining a group of strict Wiccans would probably drive several of us mad!

Second, I know how I learn. That’s not to say I do everything right, but being a solitary has taught me a lot of things about how to self teach, how to remember, and how to adapt that I don’t think I would get if I was being taught by another sole person (or group of teachers) .

Third, I don’t fit into a category that any degree system or standardized test can put me into. I consider myself to be very well-rounded in many types of practice; I meditate at least once a day, I am very accomplished in divination, plus some alternative and spiritual healing…but at the same time, I had forgotten what a “boline” was a few weeks ago and had to Google search it. You might find some of these apply to you and you may find they do not.

My point here is that self-exploration is essential to your learning. I have been self-exploring and self-coaching myself for long enough that I think if I were to join a coven, it would have to be very flexible at the least. And that’s fine with me.

However, most solitaries, including myself…no matter how much we love our individual practice, we want some sort of structure, some group or support system. This is not a bad thing, if anything it shows us that we are realistic. I myself have daydreamed about starting a teen Pagan study group (notice I did not say ‘teen coven’) before…leading group meditations and having workshops to carve our own wands and such…sounds glorious doesn’t it? But I know that in the end that is not what a group is for.

I have joined many Pagan forums and websites…some of which are like my own online Grimoire. I say almost nothing to members but comb through hundreds of information pages and topics, completely in awe. On others, I have a group of elders or mentors that I ask for help quite often, whether it’s “Can I use this pretty dish my mom gave me instead of a chalice?” or “Who can tell me in detail the exact workings of the lesser banishing ritual of the pentagram?” (And to be fair…some of the websites out there are total B.S.) . Many casual groups have the potential to help you.

This is the first rule of being a solitary. Solitary does not equate to being alone. I like knowing that I can plan my own rituals, or re-schedule a Sabbat, and that I can adapt coven rituals to my practice. But I also know that there are always people I can turn to. I might talk to my non-Wiccan parents about finding spirituality in ‘everyday’, or ‘mundane’ life (as I found out in recent months, my sort-of-ex-hippie Dad and New-Age-Spiritual Mum are great for those kinds of things) . I might go on the Internet if I want to construct my own ritual. I might ask some online Elders for their book recommendations or good websites.

The thing about being a solitary is, instead of having a coven Priest or Priestess as your teacher, the whole world is your teacher. You usually have to ask several people about one question and go through each answer until you can combine the facts you need and get your own. You may find spiritual answers in simple social contacts or in the workings of nature.

Not to say that coven members “miss out” on this, but it is often unrecognized. I suspect that since Covens are a quick resource, that problem solving may not be emphasized as much, especially with limited resources.

One of my mottos that I have come to revisit often is this: everyone has something to teach, everyone has something to learn, and everyone is sacred. So even if you’re in a coven, a solitary might be a good person to ask about making up your own rituals. Maybe that seemingly fluffy teenager over there really does have some good books to lend you. If you have no one teacher, you have to branch out to anyone that has the potential to give you knowledge – that means you have to find that potential in everyone.

There are pros and cons to every kind of practice. If you’re in a coven, you still need to be willing to branch out and seek information from people who don’t have the label of a third degree high priestess. Maybe those with less experience do have things to offer you. If you’re solitary, don’t assume that you’re 100% on your own, there are Pagan festivals and new age shops everywhere that are likely to have people willing to teach you a thing or two, and there are plenty of online communities or websites that list meet ups and moots in your area.

In the end, we all have to do our own self-teaching of a few things. No matter what path we’re on it’s always nice to have some sort of mentor to turn to, but keep in mind in the end it is you who decides what is best for your learning, and you are responsible for comparing and gathering information, and adapting to your learning needs.

A good example is taking a hike in a mountain forest. You can take an experienced Guide, or you can go in with your supplies and a map. If you take a guide, you’ll probably get where you want to be without wasting time, and you’ll learn a lot – maybe you’ll be able to become a guide for someone else someday if it’s really your shtick. However… You might go through the path with your backpack, flashlight, and map. This is riskier, because you have less experience. You have tools at your disposal and you need to know how to use them. You might get turned around. You might take longer than the tour group. But there is a potential for you to learn a lot of things that the tour guide will overlook.

Okay, so you might not get the mountain path right off, and that’s okay. But maybe you can learn a lot more about forests in general. You’ll learn the skills in how to find your way through the thick forests, and you might discover wildlife the guides will walk right past. Maybe you don’t know the mountain path so well, even by the time you’re done with your hike. But, by the end of it, you probably know a lot about finding your way when your lost, telling directions without a compass, using your resources, marking your paths, and you’ll even know your own strengths and weaknesses better.

Not to say that the tour group missed out, I mean hey, they had their fun too, and they get to do all kinds of stuff in groups that you simply don’t have the energy/time/resources for. But ultimately, it depends on what’s best for you.

In keeping with the metaphor, forests can be dangerous. Some more than others. Some places you simply shouldn’t tread without a guide, at least for a while. And never go in alone without supplies in the dark, when no one knows where you are to a place you’ve never been. You can ask a guide every now and then even if you aren’t in a tour group. And there is no reason members of that tour group can’t go on their own hikes.

Back to spiritual paths, that translates to this: go at it alone, if it suits your fancy. You will learn a ton, I guarantee you. You might not learn as much about traditional paths, but you will learn a lot about what your spirituality means. You will have the chance to dissect it, analyze each piece and synthesize it along with the paths of others. But be wary of where you go, and always be safe. You will need to learn to self evaluate, and other life skills.

Coven members may have these skills and they might be better at it than you, but you still have the chance to grow and explore your own self-definition.

I admit whole-heartedly that I have no coven experience to back this up. I have let several coven members read this and give me their thoughts, and I have spoken to many about coven practice. I am not bashing anyone who is in a coven – it is a wonderful way to learn, and I hope to have a similar experience someday. But I feel the need to stress that somewhere along the line we all need to self teach and self-explore. And if you make that self-teaching and solitary practice part of your everyday life, it gives you a lot of potential in the long run. You can learn things in unlikely places, and I think solitaries know that lesson quite well.

Remember:

Everyone has something to learn, everyone has something to teach, and everyone is sacred.

Blessings.

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