Daily Archives: August 14, 2012

Which Witch Are You?

Which Witch Are You?

Solitary:

Practices the craft alone and does not work with a group or coven. By the Gardnerian and Alexandrian way solitary witches are not witches. In order to be considered a witch you must work with a coven.

Eclectic:

These witches pick chose and mix various traditions. They have no set path.

Hereditary:

These are the practitioners who have been taught the craft from their relative. The craft was passed, unbroken, from generation to generation.

So, now, do you want to be a solitary witch or work with a coven? Let me give you a few Pros and Cons to consider.

PRO

If you join a coven you will receive lots of support. There are people available with the same beliefs to talk to. You will also get some structure. You can work your way up from dedicant to High Priest(s).

CON

Just by the fact that there is structure in a coven may discourage some people. The coven decides on the where, when at time of the Sabbats and meetings. If you break the laws of the coven (dishonor) you will be asked to leave. The cons of a coven are not unlike those that relate to any group activity.

PRO

OK, so you will go solo and be a solitary. This means that you can learn at your own pace. You can follow your own schedule for Sabbats, within reason. You attire is strictly up to you. Some solitaries will join with a know coven to celebrate Sabbats. You can design your own rituals.

CON

The major downside is that you are on are on your own. Help and guidance from knowledgeable witches are not going to be readily available. The solitary had no linage to look back on for guidance. Solitary witches are looked down on by name of the coven witches. What do you know – a class structure L

So what type of training do you want? You can find metaphysical shops and seek help from them. You can use the local library or book shop. If you have internet access there is a wealth of information available for you.

You may want to join a coven. This decision must be made carefully. Some covens are basically nothing more than social groups. Others are based on the D & D games. Be selective, just as they will want to interview you, you should reciprocate in kind.

NOTE: Witches do not try to convert people.

Once you have decided upon a coven go to a few open Sabbats and meetings, if permitted. If you can not attend an open Sabbat write the coven off. With the exception of two Sabbats, all others can be open.

Sit down with the Priestess / Priest and see what the coven will want of you. The will also ask what you can bring to the coven. Remember, a coven becomes your family away from home. The coven should NEVER supercede your home life. You family will always come first.

Once you are in total agreement – both ways you can apply to become a dedicant. During this time you will be kept under the eye of the Priestess and Priest. Your initial training will last for a year and a day. After that time, if upon the agreement of all, you can become an initiate. From that point on you will go through the three degrees of initiation. Each degree will take a minimum of a year and a day to complete.

Being a member of a coven is a commitment. You will be expected to attend coven functions. Covens usually meet to celebrate the 8 Sabbats – holidays of the God and 13 Esbats – holidays of the Goddess. Members of the coven are given a part to perform during the rituals. Not showing up for ritual is a major NO-NO. If you do not make it you can ruin the ritual.

You may also be asked to help the coven. Many covens take on community work to help the community.

Many covens plan outing and fun events for their members…

One thing to remember no matter what path you choose; When the Student is ready, the Teacher Will Appear.

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Gardnerian Wicca

Gardnerian Wicca

*A retired British civil servant named Gerald B. Gardner is the ‘Grandfather’, at the very least, of almost all Neo-Wicca. He was initiated into a coven of Witches in the New Forest region of England in 1939 by a High Priestess named ‘Old Dorothy’ Clutterbuck. In 1949 he wrote a novel [*High Magic's Aid*] about medieval Witchcraft in which quite a bit of the Craft as practiced by that coven was used. In 1951 the last of the English laws against Witchcraft were repealed (primarily due to the pressure of Spiritualists) and Gardner published *Witchcraft Today*, which set forth a version of the rituals and traditions of that coven. There is an enormous amount of disagreement about virtually every statement I have made in this paragraph.

Gardnerism is both a tradition and a family, and lineage is a family tree. The High Priestess rules the coven, and the principles of love and trust preside. We follow our handed down book more carefully than many others, but we are free to add and improvise, as long as we preserve the original.

We work skyclad, practice binding and scourging, are hierarchal and secretive, therefore we are controversial. We’re also controversial because we were first – the first craft tradition in the U. S. and descended from the man largely responsible for starting the craft revival. So, we’re called ‘the snobs of the craft’, but I think we’re as much fun as anyone else; our parties as good, our jokes as bad’

A Gardnerian can trace his/her lineage matrilineally back to a High Priestess who worked with Gerald. For virtually all American Gardnerians, that means his last HPS, Monique Wilson. Monique initiated the Bucklands and Rosemary Buckland initiated Theas, so far as anyone knows, the only one of Rosemary’s Thirds who passed the initiation on – which is why she has been called (but doesn’t call herself) ‘Witch Queen of America. ‘[the foregoing quotes provided by Deborah Lipp Bonewits, a Gardnerian Third Degree High Priestess as well as an ADF Druidess.]

*Each Gardnerian coven is autonomous and is headed by a High Priestess who can turn to her queen (the High Priestess who trained her) for counsel and advice. This maintains the lineage and creates a pool of experienced and knowledgeable leaders and teachers.

*Reincarnation and the Wiccan Rede [An it harm none do what you will] are basic tenants of the tradition. Covens are as much as possible composed of male/female pairs for balance. Most working is accomplished with the energy raised by the interaction of the Lord and Lady as represented by the couples in the coven by dancing, chanting, etc.

*Like many Wiccan traditions, Gardnerians have three degrees. An American Gardnerian must be of the 3rd degree before she can become a HPS. The HPS/HP are responsible for conducting services (circles), training their conveners, and preserving and passing on Gardnerian Craft. *[This material quoted from Converging Paths Newsletter, Kyril, Brita, & Hugh authors. ]

A lot of the controversy surrounding Gardnerianism questions the sources of the rituals and other materials, particularly those appearing in print. It is true that Gardner presented these materials as if they were directly from his New Forest tradition. It is clear, however, that whatever materials the coven may have had when he was initiated, Gerald made a lot of changes and added a great deal. Literary sources of the published Book of Shadows include Blake, Kipling, Yeats and Crowley. Much of the published material was written by Doreen Valiente, a member of the coven for a time and later founder of her own groups and author of many excellent books on the Craft.

Gardnerian Witches without doubt do have many materials which have not appeared in print, however, their emphasis on secrecy has made them a punchline in the Wiccan social world. How many Gardnerians does it take to change a light bulb? That’s a secret! Their High Priestess will usually be called ‘Lady’ Soandso and High Priest, ‘Lord Whatisname’. [This is far more true in the U. S. than it is in England.]

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Alexandrian Wicca

Alexandrian Wicca

As most everyone by now is aware, the Alexandrian Tradition is very close to Gardnerian with a few minor changes. (One of the most obvious ones being that the Alexandrians use the athame as a symbol for the element of fire and the wand as a symbol for air. Most of the rituals are very formal and heavily indebted to ceremonial magick. It is also a polarized tradition and the sexuality of that female/male polarity is emphasized. The ritual cycle deals mostly with the division of the year between the Holly King and the Oak King and several ritual dramas deal with the dying/resurrected God theme. As with Gardnerians, the High Priestess is supposedly the highest authority. However, it is odd that the primary spokespersons for both traditions have been men. [*This material provided by Gillan]

Alexandrian Wicca is the creation of Alex Sanders (with his then wife Maxine) who claimed to have been initiated by his grandmother in 1933. It’s principal proponents are Janet and Stewart Fararr whose books set forth most, if not all, of the Alexandrian tradition. Contrary to popular belief, the name Alexandrian refers not to Alex Sanders, but to Ancient Alexandria.

Although similiar to Gardnerian Wicca, Alexandrian Wicca tends to be more eclectic, and liberal. Some of Gardnerisms strict rules, such as the requirement of ritual nudity, have been made optional by Alexandrian Wicca.

Mary Nesnick, an American initiate in Gardnerian and Alexandrian traditions founded a ‘new’ tradition called Algard. This tradition brings together both Gardnerian and Alexandrian teachings under a single banner. This was possible due to the great similiarities between the two traditions.

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Spell A Day – New England Healing Charm

Spell A Day – New England Healing Charm

 

If you are lucky enough to have an apple tree in your garden or local park, you can perform a healing spell. To start, braid 24-inch red, white, and black threads together while thinking about the illness you want to be rid of. Visualize braiding it into the threads. Go out into the garden and using your right hand, tie your left hand to an apple tree with the thread. Be sure to leave a loose loop. Slip your hand out of the loop and walk home without looking behind you, being aware that you are leaving the disease behind. The apple tree will transmit the negativity into the earth, where Mother Earth will absorb and transform it.

by: Anna Franklin

Llewellyn and GrannyMoon’s Morning Feast

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Crone’s Corner – APPLE DIVINATION

Crone’s Corner - APPLE DIVINATION

If a girls peels an apple in one long piece at midnight on Halloween, and then tosses the peel over her left shoulder or into a bowl of water, she will be able to read the first initial of her future partner’s name in the shape assumed by the discarded peel.

* If a girl peels an apple at midnight on Halloween and hangs the peel on a nail by the front door, the initials of the first man to enter will be the same as those of her unknown lover.

* If a group of unmarried boys and girls each attach an apple to a string and twirl the apple over a fire, the order in which the apples fall off the string indicates the order in which they will all be married. The owner of the last apple to drop will remain unmarried.

* In a group of unmarried boys and girls, each person marks an apple and places it in a large bucket of water, along with unmarked apples. Without using their hands, the teens attempt to take bites out of the apples floating in the water. The teen is fated to marry the person whose apple they bite. Another variation of this custom consists of hanging the apples from strings tied to a tree.

 

GrannyMoon’s Morning Feast Archives

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Daily Aromatherapy Tip – Frankincense Bath Kisses

Daily Aromatherapy Tip – Frankincense Bath Kisses

 

You can make these now and freeze them for your holiday gifts.

These lusciously scented “kisses” are a bathtime luxury. Melt one
ounce cocoa butter and 2/3 ounce shea butter(available in most health
food stores)in a microwave, then add 1/3 ounce sweet almond oil and
1/8 teaspoon each frankincense and sweet orange essential oils. Pour
into small candy molds and place in the freezer for 20 minutes.
Remove from molds. Place one or two ‘kisses’ into hot bath water.
Store the rest in a ziplock bag in the freezer.

Brought to you by AromaThyme.com -

http://www.aromathyme.com

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Herbs and Such – HAZEL NUTS

Herbs and Such – HAZEL NUTS

Hazel nuts were also believed to possess mystical powers and could be used in divining. The nut is believed to be at its
strongest on Hallowe’en night, which was traditionally called ‘Nutcrack Night’ in England (UK). Lovers were recommended to use
this to gain foresight into the relationship.

‘Two hazel nuts I threw into the flame,
And to each nut I gave a sweetheart’s name.
This, with the loudest bounce me sore amazed,
That, with a flame of brightest colour blazed.
As blazed the nut, so may thy passion grow,
For ’twas thy nut that did so brightly glow.’
~Gray

‘Some merry, friendly, countra folks
Together did convene,
To burn their nits, an’ pu their stocks,
An’ haud their Halloween
Fu’ blithe that night.’
~R. Burns.

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Gemstone of the Day for August 14 is Jade

JADE (TREMOLITE)
SCIENTIFIC INFORMATION: Tremolite is a calcium, magnesium and iron silicate. When the iron content is high, it is called actinolite. The chemistry is Ca2(mg,Fe)5Si8O22(OH)2. The streak is colorless, although the mineral itself can range in color from white to dark grey, yellowish, pink to lilac. We commonly tend to think of “jade” as green, but as you can see, it is actually available in many colors. The hardness is between 5 and 6.
ENVIRONMENT: Tremolite is a product of metamorphism and occurs with calcite and grossular in hornfels of contact metamorphic rocks and with talc in serpentinites of hydrothermal metamorphic rocks.
OCCURRENCE: There are many localities where fine tremolite specimens may be obtained. Crystals of up to 3″ in length occur in marble at Haliburton and Wilberforce, Haliburton Co., Ontario and granular masses of pink tremolite (hexagonite) at De Kalb, St. Lawerence Co., New York. White and greenish crystals occur in calcite at Canaan, Litchfield Co., Connecticut.
GEMSTONE DATA: The Amphibole mineral nephrite, which consists of combined tremolite and actinolite, is dense, compact, tough.  Semitransparent to translucent varieties of nephrite are called [jade.] Nephrite jade colors are white, all shades of green, gray, grayish (with tinge of blue, red, or green), brown, and lavender. Value increases with transparency, intensity and evenness of color, and freedom from flaws. Jade is fashioned into beads, earrings, and cabochons for rings and brooches, or carved into ornamental or religious objects. Nephrite jade comes from Alaska, British Columbia, Wyoming, China and Siberia.
NAME: Tremolite is from the occurrence in Val Tremolo in the Swiss Alps. The word ‘jade’ is derived from the Spanish [pietra d'ijada] which means ‘colic stone’. In China, where jade has been venerated for thousands of years, over a hundred different names are in use for different color varieties.
LEGEND and LORE: Jade ornaments and implements of great antiquity have been discovered both in those parts of the world in which the mineral is found and in places far distant from these. It is the ‘greenstone’ so highly esteemed by the Maoris of New Zealand who carved it into pendants, sometimes representing their hero Tiki, and into chieftains’ war clubs.  It has been carved in Central America for well over a thousand years and the ancient Mayas prized it above gold. In ancient China a prospective bride would present her betrothed a jade butterfly to seal their engagement. Likewise the bridegroom would give his sweetheart a gift of jade before their wedding.
MAGICAL PROPERTIES: Jade is considered one of the most important symbols of purity and serenity. It is also revered as an ancient symbol of love. The Maoris regard Jade as a stone that brings luck, especially specimens that are dark olive-green in color. The ancient Chinese felt that Jade helps to inspire the mind to make quick and precise decisions. The ancient trader would often hold this gem in the palm of his right hand while he engaged in business transactions. Carved into a scarab, Jade is said to bring its owner a long and prosperous life. It is also said that wearing Jade while gardening will improve the health of the plants. Similarly, small pieces of Jade can be buried along the perimeter for this purpose. It is worn for protection during defensive magical workings.
HEALING: Jade has been called “colic stone”, “spleen stone” and “stone of the loins”. It is said that by tying jade to the arm, stones in the kidneys can be expelled. The ancient Greeks used this mineral for healing ailments of the eyes. Wearing Jade helps the body to heal itself while working on the underlying, nonphysical problems which cause the disease in the first place.
PERSONAL EXPERIENCE: I use Jade as a Heart Chakra stone, for those that feel threatened or frightened. I’ve also used it to control swelling of various glands in the face and neck, by placing it directly over the gland. Before I had a piece of Malachite, I used it on my broken arm. It seemed to help the break heal. It was NOT successful on the damage done to the nerves and tendons in my wrist, however. The Malachite worked better.
——-bibliography——-
1. Scientific, Environment, Occurrence and Name are from (or paraphrased from) “The Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Rocks and Minerals”.
2. Additional information about the Name and Legends and Lore are from “Gemstones” by E. H. Rutland.
3. Legends and Lore, Magical Properties are from “Cunningham’s Encyclopedia of Crystal, Gem & Metal Magic”, by Scott Cunningham.
4. Some of the healing information may come from “Color and Crystals, A Journey Through the Chakras” by Joy Gardner.
5. Personal Experience is from MY personal experience, journals and notebooks, by Tandika Star.


Jade wards off infantile disease if placed around the neck and not removed. It is placed in the mouth of a corpse to protect the soul. Necromancers used it to raise the soul. Jade bracelets are worn to promote a long life and as a charm to prevent eye infection. It is considered to be the concentrated essence of love. It makes a good healing talisman for the kidneys, urinary and digestive problems.
To Ritualists, it embodies the five cardinal virtues of the pentacle.
– Spirit Justice – Earth Charity – Water Courage – Fire Modesty – Air Wisdom -
It also makes a good gambling talisman, especially for racing.
Compiled by Lady Hathor – The Silver Circle – Toronto, Ont.


JADE:    Strengthens  heart,  kidneys,  immune  system. Helps cleanse blood.  Increases longevity and fertility. Aids eye disorders and female problems.  Powerful  emotional balancer.  Radiates divine,   unconditional   love. Clarity,  modesty, courage, justice, wisdom. Peaceful and nurturing.  Dispels negativity.  Healing affinity will correspond to particular color of stone.
By Legion of Light

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