Your Daily Influences for May 5

Your Daily Influences
May 5, 2011 

Tarot Influence

Rune Influence

Charm Influence
The Six of Wands Reversed
Success may be delayed. Be wary of accomplished enemies.
Jera denotes positive, recurring cycles, fertility and a time to harvest rewards from your hard work.
Gemini the Twins
This aspect of your life will be strongly influenced by a person who is nervous, tense, superficial, inconsistent, cunning and inquisitive. Although their traits leave a bit to be desired, you enjoy being with this person. They can help you get what you want, but their will be a price to pay.
Your Daily Influences represent events and challenges the current day will present for you. They may represent opportunities you should be ready to seize. Or they may forewarn you of problems you may be able to avoid or lessen. Generally it is best to use them as tips to help you manage your day and nothing more.

Your Charm for May 5 is Virgo the Virgin

Your Charm for Today

Virgo the Virgin
Today’s Meaning:
This aspect of your life will be strongly influenced by a person who is modest, shy, meticulous, reliable, practical, diligent, intelligent and analytical. This person may be a leader of some kind where you are employed.General Description:
Sixth sign of the Zodiac, Aug. 24th to Sept. 22nd. Ruled by the planet Mercury; correct metal, Silver. Those born under the influence of Virgo were supposed to be painstaking, efficient, ingenious, methodical, sensitive, studious, restless, rather irritable, but slow to anger. The Virgo gems are the Cornelian and Sardonyx. The Cornelian has always been a favourite talisman in the East. The Chinese had great faith in its supposed medicinal virtues. In Egypt used as a protection from every kind of evil; in Turkey and Arabia engraved with a verse from the Koran, and worn as an amulet for eveil eye, the plague, and every from of sickness; in Spain for courage and eloquence.

Your Animal Spirit for May 5 is The Green Man

Your Animal Spirit for Today
May 5, 2011 

your daily animal spirit for today

Green Man

Green Man peers out of the foliage to remind you that not all of life’s mysteries have logical solutions. Be open to magical opportunities, spirit allies, and unconventional paths. Get out into the wilderness, ground yourself in meditation, and listen for Green Man’s wisdom. You may just catch sight of him eyeing you in his leafy camouflage.

Today’s Chakra Levels for May 5

The Chakras represent the seven primary energy hubs in the body. Life force energy is constantly flowing in and out of these centers. Just as the cosmos is constantly changing, so too are the levels of energy absorbed and radiated by our Chakra centers. The graph below is a representation of the quantities of Chakra energies available today.


Sahasrara – The Crown Chakra represents energies associated with cosmic consciousness, spirituality, knowledge, wisdom and inner peace.
Ajna – The Third Eye Chakra represents energies focused on both physical and spiritual vision. Psychic powers resonate from the Ajna Chakra, as well as your image of the Cosmos as a whole (the big picture) and the many nuances that make your journey unique.
Vishuddha – Throat Chakra is the energy center associated with communication and creativity. Your energy to express yourself verbally and creatively are derived from the Vishuddha Chakra.
Anahata – The Heart Chakra’s energy is concentrated on issues concerning your emotions. This energy fuels your power to love, feel compassion and maintain balance between disparate aspects of your being.
Manipura – The Power Chakra provides the energy that fuels our strength of will, individuality and sense of self-worth.
Svadhisthana – The Spleen or Sacral Chakra supplies the energy we use emotionally and sexually. This is the energy used to connect to others.
Muladhara – The Root or Base Chakra furnishes the energy used to create and maintain our foundation. This is the energy that keeps us on firm ground and provides us with the basic skills to uphold a place in the world.

The Planets Now for May 5


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Position of the planets based on Greenwich Mean Time (GMT).
14° 56′
in Taurus
13° 15′
in Gemini
18° 39′
in Aries
17° 43′
in Aries
25° 51′
in Aries
23° 21′
in Aries
11° 34′
in Libra
03° 02′
in Aries
00° 55′
in Pisces
07° 02′
in Capricorn
Conjunction: Mars Jupiter 2º
Conjunction: Mercury Jupiter 4º
Conjunction: Mercury Mars 7º
Conjunction: Mercury Venus 0º
Conjunction: Venus Jupiter 5º
Conjunction: Venus Mars 8º
Opposition: Mercury Saturn 7º
Opposition: Venus Saturn 6º
Semi-Sextile: Sun Moon 1º
Semi-Sextile: Sun Venus 2º
Semi-Sextile: Uranus Neptune 2º
Sextile: Moon Venus 4º
Square: Saturn Pluto 4º
Square: Uranus Pluto 4º
Trine: Moon Saturn 1º
The Sun in Taurus
Tradition, stability and loyalty are strong influences as the Sun travels through Taurus. Generally, taking a practical approach to life is favored at this time. It is likely risks should be avoided at this time. Substantial financial gain can be made while the Sun is in Taurus. This is also a good time to enjoy the good things in life as long as indulgences are not allowed to become excessive. Making headway towards reaching goals could be challenged by a general stubbornness and resistance to change.


Moon In Gemini
Many may find themselves disconnected from their emotions at this time. For some, their emotions, passions may make them a little uncomfortable. The need for mental stimulation is likely high.

Moon Sextile or Trine Venus
Now is a good time to make sure those close to you realize just how important they are to you.

Moon Sextile or Trine Saturn
Keeping a cool head when faced with crisis is essential for success during this aspect. Those who take the lead in solving problems will be well rewarded.

Mercury In Aries
Mercury in Aries is an influence that does not favor diplomacy. Many will be far more outspoken than usual. Dissension will be prevalent. Traditional approaches to handling challenges are likely to be replaced by new, more affective strategies. The need to be on the cutting edge of things will be strong.

Mercury Conjunct Venus
Many will find themselves easily moved by the arts. Their creative side is likely to be higher as well.

Mercury Conjunct Mars
Debates and analytical thinking are likely. The candid words of some may be so frank that they may be seen as offensive to those on the receiving end.

Mercury Conjunct Jupiter
Seeking the “essence” of things may become a preoccupation. The need and ability to share ideas is strong.

Mercury Opposition or Square Saturn
This aspect provides a favorable window for tackling complex intellectual problems.

Venus In Aries
Emotions may be high. The need for love is heightened, as well as the need to fulfill needs of loved ones. Physical desires and sensuality are likely to be very strong.

Venus Conjunct Mars
The need to express one’s emotions openly may be high. Responses such openness may not be positive.

Venus Conjunct Jupiter
Avoid getting caught up in trite issues. Optimism towards the future is a powerful tool that can ensure success. Some will seem far more attractive than usual.

Venus Opposition or Square Saturn
This aspect tends to add a serious tone to life. Pursuing practical goals is favored. Some may feel a little less deserving than they usually do.

Mars In Aries
Action is the keyword at this time. Those who act quickly and decisively should be favored. Self-sufficiency and the ability to act alone are valuable assets. Many will do well by focusing on short term goals.

Mars Conjunct Jupiter
Success in all arenas is possible. Energy levels and optimism should be relatively high.

Jupiter In Aries
Self-reliance and optimism are favored at this time. Those who enjoy challenges and competition are favored. Adopting a never surrender attitude is a key component to attaining success.


Saturn In Libra
Intimacy may be more of a chore than a pleasure. Some will find their progress towards strengthening intimate bonds and attaining goals muted by feelings of inadequacy.

Saturn Opposition or Square Pluto
This aspect may make it difficult to commit one’s self to anything beyond the moment at hand. However, those who do take on new goals will put the full force of their nature into achieving them.

Uranus In Aries
The astrological influence of Uranus is measured in increments of 7 years. What this means is that the effects of Uranus influence an entire generation. Day to day the Uranian influence may be imperceptible, but when the period is viewed as a whole the impact of Uranus is likely to be strikingly apparent.

Iconoclasm, independence and self-sufficiency are likely to be major themes during this period. Traditional values will be challenged. Those with a pioneering spirit will flourish.

Uranus Square Pluto
A mental restlessness and the need for complete personal freedom are possible influences of this aspect. In some the need for total autonomy may be so strong that they will challenge any attempt to subdue their independence.

Neptune In Pisces
Because Neptune takes approximately 14 years to move across Pisces its day to day influence may be imperceptible, but when the period is viewed as a whole the impact of Neptune in Pisces is likely to be strikingly apparent.

Gentleness, creativity, and the pursuit of spiritual truth are strong influences at this time. Many may find mysticism and unorthodox religions very attractive.


Pluto In Capricorn
Because Pluto takes approximately 15 years to move across Capricorn its day to day influence may be imperceptible, but when the period is viewed as a whole the impact of Pluto in Capricorn is likely to be strikingly apparent.

Strong economic gains can be made during this period. Pluto in Capricorn favors those who are able to make logical decisions and devise pragmatic solutions to the challenges before them.

Your Deck of Ancient Symbols Card for May 5 is Futility

Your Deck of Ancient Symbols Card for Today


Sadly sometimes our desires lead us down paths which have no end and offer us no chance of achieving the results we want. If we persist we end up like Sisyphus: forever rolling a boulder uphill only to have it roll back downhill before we ever get to the top. Futility suggest the existence of just such a situation–we are chasing a prize that will never be ours. Futility indicates a need to rethink our ambitions and direct our energies towards a goal or goals that can be attained.

As a daily card, Futility implies that you are putting energy into goals that cannot be met. It suggest the need to rethink your desires and possibly find a new goal or goals to chase.

Today’s I Ching Hexagram for May 5 is 37: Community

Today’s I Ching Hexagram for Everyone:

37: Community

Thursday, May 5th, 2011

Hexagram 37

General Meaning: A community or extended family that works is one where healthy interdependence is appreciated and supported. Good direction is essential, but strong kinship is dependent upon every member of the community. Trust, shared responsibilities and good communication are essential. Each member must be encouraged to find his or her appropriate expression, and contribution.

The functional family is a team that symbolizes the ideal of human interdependence, and has long provided a firm foundation for society. The healthy family is a microcosm of society and the native soil in which ethical values take root and grow. Fertilize this soil, and the whole of society benefits.

The power that bonds a tribe is the yin or feminine principle — gentleness and receptivity. Relationships are improved through cultivation of these. Learn to accept both advice and aid from others, and be willing to assume an appropriate role in any group that supports good relating. A good team player is always valuable to others. Increase your value!

Your Daily Number for May 5: 7

Your Daily Number: 7

You may have a tendency to make things more complicated than they need to be today. Nagging self-doubt may also be a problem. Before it gets out of hand, take a break and spend some quiet time by yourself.

Fast Facts

About the Number 7

Theme: Quiet, Insightful, Analytical, Mystical, Intuitive
Astro Association: Cancer
Tarot Association: Chariot

Today’s Tarot Card for May 5 is The Emperor

Today’s Tarot Card for Everyone:

The Emperor

This Tarot Deck: Dragon

General Meaning: In the most practical terms, what has traditionally been called the Emperor card represents the highest leadership, a head of state or the most exemplary and powerful person in the realm. This archetypal ruler is responsible for the positive working out of affairs of a society or community, which are directly proportional to his well being and happiness.

The more enlightenment and cosmic perspective this energy brings, the better life is for all. The Emperor archetype masters the world of matter and physical manifestation. When you apply this card to your situation, acknowledge your potentials for mastery. Reinforce a sense of sovereignty within yourself, despite any self-limiting beliefs, habits or appearances to the contrary.

Daily Horoscopes for May 5

General Daily Horoscope


We are still experiencing the excitement of what’s new in our lives since five planets are in pioneering Aries. However, the Sun is in practical Taurus, motivating us to finish what we start. But today’s jittery Gemini Moon speeds up our thinking so much that we may become too scattered to stay focused. Thankfully, a midday lunar trine to realistic Saturn might help us temporarily filter out the excess noise so we can actually get some work done.


Aries Horoscope
Aries Horoscope (Mar 21 – Apr 19)

It seems as if your hectic life keeps getting busier and busier. As much as you enjoy the hustle and bustle, you are looking forward to a quieter time. However, it won’t likely happen today. Fortunately, the fast pace feels good; you don’t have time now to worry about what’s not going right. Nevertheless, pick one task out of everything that’s on your plate and focus on it with all the determination that you have. The results may be more satisfying than you expect.



Taurus Horoscope
Taurus Horoscope (Apr 20 – May 20)

You may feel as if your finances are a bit uneven today, even if nothing much has changed recently. But you probably won’t share your insecurities with others now, for you might believe that giving a voice to your fears will only make them worse. You don’t have to dwell on the negatives; take positive action instead — even if it’s as minor as paying a few bills. Anything that gives you a sense of control will help to ease your stress.



Gemini Horoscope
Gemini Horoscope (May 21 – Jun 20)

Your friends may think that you’re not very grounded now that the Moon is moving through restless Gemini, but you are more stable than you appear. Nevertheless, your moods can fluctuate at a rapid rate today, so try keeping your opinions to yourself for a while before sharing them. Instead of running all over the map, speak your piece later on once you’re sure of what you want.



Cancer Horoscope
Cancer Horoscope (June 21 – Jul 22)

There’s no need for you to push so hard at work now, especially if you have been focused on your career ambitions all week. It’s not that you can just take the day off, but you can keep your best ideas to yourself for a few more days, giving them a chance to mature. If you share too much of your current thinking today, others may stop listening. Let your patience work in your favor and give your strategy time to develop.



Leo Horoscope
Leo Horoscope (Jul 23 – Aug 22)

It’s nearly impossible for you to concentrate on the present moment with the Moon in your 11th House of Long-Term Goals plus five planets traveling through your 9th House of Adventure. Although you are looking forward with great anticipation, you must demonstrate your reliability today by putting in extra effort, because important events are unfolding at work. If you handle the immediate situation with integrity, the future will take care of itself.


Virgo Horoscope
Virgo Horoscope (Aug 23 – Sep 22)

You might have mixed feelings about a new project at work as the Moon moves through your 10th House of Career. Others are pushing you to make a decision today, yet you’re probably unwilling to make a commitment just yet — you may learn new facts that could motivate you to change your mind, or something better could come along. However, you can reduce the uncertainty and increase the stability in your life by choosing now.



Libra Horoscope
Libra Horoscope (Sep 23 – Oct 22)

You may be thinking about pursuing a new course of study that isn’t related to your career. Even if you have many choices before you, it’s logistically impossible to follow more than one path. Thankfully, the Moon’s harmonious trine to Saturn in your sign today can give you the clarity you need in order to make the smartest decision. After considering all your options, trust your intuition, pick your direction and get going.



Scorpio Horoscope
Scorpio Horoscope (Oct 23 – Nov 21)

You are tempted to talk about your feelings today, even if you’ve been holding them back for a reason. You don’t intend to hurt anyone, but your direct approach might sound insensitive. It’s not what you say that can stir up ill will; it’s how you say it. Think twice before you blurt out the truth. You can still express yourself honestly while also treating others with kindness and respect.



Sagittarius Horoscope
Sagittarius Horoscope (Nov 22 – Dec 21)

You may be more curious than usual today as you seek other people’s opinions to help you clarify your own. It takes extra effort on your part now to pin someone down who continues to evade responding to your questions. Unfortunately, the more you push for resolution, the less likely you will get it. Step back and allow others to have some elbow room. You’ll become more confident of your perspective by looking within, rather than listening to anyone else.



Capricorn Horoscope
Capricorn Horoscope (Dec 22 – Jan 19)

As a general rule, information isn’t something you collect unless you have a way to make use of it as you work toward your goals. You may be learning a lot at work now with the clever Gemini Moon moving through your 6th House of Employment, but you are hard-pressed to apply your new knowledge. Nevertheless, the tools you’re gathering can help you to express yourself in ways you haven’t yet imagined.



Aquarius Horoscope
Aquarius Horoscope (Jan 20 – Feb 18)

Although you may have plenty to do at work, you could get antsy enough that you want to begin your weekend a couple of days too soon. You are able to come up with sufficient reasons to justify your restlessness, but all the talk in the world won’t make your busy schedule any less demanding. Fortunately, managing your calendar becomes easier once you decide to have fun with it, instead of worrying about fitting everything in.



Pisces Horoscope
Pisces Horoscope (Feb 19 – Mar 20)

Your personal business could keep you hopping today as the light-footed Gemini Moon visits your 4th House of Home and Family. Unfortunately, it may take you longer than you expect to complete each and every task that’s now on your plate. Thankfully, your self-esteem is running high these days, so you shouldn’t have too much trouble responding to the current demands. Set your priorities by making a list to help you be more efficient.

History of Witchcraft (part 7)

History of Witchcraft (part 7)

We  have looked briefly at the similarities of  the  philosophies
and vocabularies, but is that all that they had in common?  Let’s
look at symbologies.

For  many years, the cross has been the symbol  representing  the
death  of the Christian Christ.  It has represented that  through
his  death, man could be reborn into God’s grace.  Thus, we  have
the  philosophy  of life in death being connected to  the  cross. 
Is  this the only time where this symbol was recognized as  such? 
Let’s go back to Egypt and find out.

An upright piece of wood, tied to a horizontal beam indicated the
height  of  the  flood waters on the Nile.  This  beam  formed  a
cross.   If  the  waters  failed to rise  during  the  season  of
planting,  it  meant a poor harvest for these people.   Thus  the
cross was revered as a symbol of life and regeneration.

The Ankh represents the genitals of both sexes.  The cross itself
is  a  primitive form of the phallus, and the loop  that  of  the
womb. Again, we continue the symbol of the cross as the giver  of

Oh  my gosh…did I use the word phallus in connection  with  the
cross?  Oops! 

Yes…even  prior  to  this time was the cross a  symbol  of  the
phallus  or  fertility.   This is not the  only  thing  that  the
phallus has symbolized over the many centuries within and without
the pagan world.  It has also been used as a symbol of strength.

Within the Bible, we find several references to the horn also  as
a  symbol of strength.

2 Samuel 22:3 – He is my shield, and the horn of my salvation.
Luke 1:69 – And hath raised up an horn of salvation for us.
Psalm 18:2 – He is my shield and the horn of my salvation.

The move from horn to helmet is followed up also in the bible  as
Isaiah 59:17 – For he put an helmet of salvation upon his head.
Ephesians 6:17 – Take the helmet of salvation.
1  Thessalonians  5:8  –  …putting  on  faith  and  love  as  a
breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet.

In  Roman days a warrior would were horns on his helmet.   If  he
came back defeated, he was said to have been dehorned.  There are
several  references  where a soldier who lost his helmet  on  the
field  was killed for this offense because it meant dishonor  for
him to loose his horn.

Shakespeare had much knowledge of the use of horns as a symbol of
protection  and victory as is evident in his works “As  You  Like
It” (IV,2) and in “Measure for Measure” (II,4:16) when he writes:
“Let’s  write  good  angell on the devill’s horne;  tis  not  the
devill’s crest.”

Even  in modern days, the Catholic Church uses this  symbol  when
setting  the mitre upon the head of a newly  consecrated  bishop. 
The  words used at such a time are: “We set on the head  of  this
Bishop,  O  Lord,  Thy champion, the helmet  of  defense  and  of
salvation, that with comely face and with his head armed with the
horns  of  either  Testament  he  may  appear  terrible  to   the
gainsayers of the truth, and may become their vigorous assailant,
through  the abundant gift of Thy grace, who didst make the  face
of Thy servant Moses to shine after familiar converse with  Thee,
and  didst adorn it with the resplendent horns of Thy  brightness
and Thy truth and commandedst the mitre to be set on the head  of
Aaron,  Thy high priest, Etc…” (Copies in Latin and  translated
can be found in The Order Consecration of a Bishop Elect with the
imprimatur  of H. Card. Vaughn, p. 14, Burns and Oates, 1893.) 

If  we are looking at protections and the like, we must  look  at
the  use of stones and crystals within our lives.  Yes,  even  in
the Christain bible, the powers and uses of stones is  mentioned.
Exodus  28:15-21 – “Fashion a breastpiece for making decisions  –
the  work  of a skilled craftsman.  MAke it like  the  ephod:  of
gold, and of blue, purple and scarlet yarn, and of finely twisted
linen.  It is to be square – a span (9 inches) wide – and  folded
double.   Then mount four rows of precious stones on it.  In  the
first  row  there shall be a ruby, a topaz and a  beryl;  in  the
second  row  a  turquoise, a sapphire (or lapis  lazuli)  and  an
emerald; in the third row a jacinth, an agate and an amethyst; in
the fourth row a chrysolite, an onyx and a jasper.  Mount them in
gold  filigree settings.  There are to be twelve stones, one  for
each  of  the names of the sons of Israel, each engraved  like  a
seal with the name of one of the twelve tribes.”

Exodus  28:9-14  – Take two onyx stones and engrave  on  the  the
names  of  the sons of Israel in the order of their birth  –  six
names  on one stone and the remaining six on the other.   Engrave
the  names of the sons of Israel on the two stones the way a  gem
cutter  engraves a seal. Then mount the stones in  gold  filigree
settings  and fasten them on the shoulder pieces of the ephod  as
memorial  stones  for the sons of Israel.  Aaron is to  bear  the
names on his shoulders as a memorial before the Lord.  Make  gold
filigree  settings  and two braided chains of pure gold,  like  a
rope, and attach the chains to the settings.

Though it does not say as much, we might take the engraving as  a
form of runes, again creating a similarity between the craft  and
religions of old.

From  man’s search for protection, we come to the telling by  the
stars…Astrology, and the use of stars as protectors of man.

The  lore behind the star of David is an interesting  tale.   The
easy interpretation is that of Zionism.  The more research you do
on  this though, you will find that once again, depending on  the
cultures  you  look at, it’s interpretation  changes.   The  six-
pointed  star  formed  by the superimposing of  one  triangle  on
another.  The symbol is a combination of the male (apex  upwards)
and female (apex downwards) triangles;  it is said, in cabalistic
writings, to comprise the signs of the four elements and the four
letters of the Tetragrammaton, and thus it came to be the  symbol
for God.  Since the Biblical commandment puts a taboo on the  use
of  the Name of God and on the depiction of God, the  symbol  was
inscribed as the graphic representation of God in synagogues  and
wherever the Name was appropriate.  In alchemy, the star of David
combined  the  symbols  for  fire  and  water;  hence,  it  meant
distillation.   Until recently, therefore, it appeared  on  shops
selling  brandy.  The star of David is the symbol of Zionism  and
appears  on the flag of Israel.  As Solomon’s seal, the  hexagram
possessed  power to control demons of all kinds.  The stopper  on
the  bottle containing the bottle imp or jinni was  stamped  with
the  seal  of Solomon.  In the Nsibidi script of West  Africa,  a
native  form  of  writing,  the symbol  means  ardent  love;  the
universality  of  the  male-female content of the  sign  is  here

Astrology also has interesting roots.  Though the word itself  is
made  up of the Greek words meaning “star logic” (astra  –  star,
Logos  – logic), the actual origin is yet to be  determined.   We
read  in the Epic of Creation of Sumer – Akkad, or Early  Babylon
(ca  2200-1900  B.C.)  that:  “The  Star  –  Jupiter  who  brings
prophecies  to all is my Lord.  My Lord be at peace.  The Star  –
Mercury  allows rain to fall. The Star – Saturn, the star of  Law
and Justice…”

The  telling  of fortunes by the stars underwent an  avid  growth
spurt during the times of the Roman Empire, and though with minor
qualms with the Christian church, it co-existed peacefully  until
the  time  of  Constantine  when  all  “pagan”  activities   were
outlawed.  Though  outlawed within the  Roman  Empire,  Astrology
continued to thrive within the Middle East.

I  realize that I said that I would touch on the inquisition  and
such,  however, I think that it is common knowledge the  document
used to persecute those involved was written by the Friars within
the  Catholic  Church  at the time.  The  document,  The  Malleus
Maleficarum,  was a document designed to bring about fear  within
the  Christian community, and more power to the church.  What  is
not widely realized is that the majority of the persons that were
either burned, drowned, or hung were not witches, but Protestants
within the Christian church.  (The ones that were Protesting  the
Catholic church.)

I realize that, at this time, this is a rather sketchy  document.
I hope in the near future to be able to take the time to  develop
more  of  the depth that I would like to put into  bring  up  our
roots.  I  hope to include in the expanded edition the  times  of
burning,  modern witchcraft, more symbols, and famous persons  in
the craft.

We’ve  changed…but  then as a good friend has told me  on  more
than  one occasion…”When we cease to change, we cease to  grow. 
When we cease to grow, life ends.”


The Golden Bough – Frazer, Sir James George, Macmillan Publishing
          Co., NY, NY  c 1922

Witchcraft The Old Religion – Martello

Funk & Wagnalls Standard Dictionary of Folklore, Mythology and

The History of Witchcraft – Russell, Jeffrey B., c 1980

Encyclopedia Britanica – 1986

The Holy Bible (New International Version)

Under the Spell of the Zodiac – Mark Graubard

Alchemy: Origin or Origins? – H. J. Sheppard, AMBIX, July 1970

Magic, Supernaturalism, and Religion – Seligmann c 1948

This  Bibliography encompasses the entire 7 document series  here
on this series.

History of Witchcraft (part 6)

History of Witchcraft (part 6)

As  we  can see, even though the pagan community  has  been  trod
upon,  it  was  never  destroyed.   The  date  of  Christmas  was
purposely  fixed on December 25 to push into the  background  the
great  festival of the sun god, and the Epiphany on January 5  to
supplant  an  Egyptian festival of the same day  and  the  Easter
ceremonies were set to rival the pagan spring festival.

Let’s take a look at a few of the holidays and compare.

On Easter Sunday, everywhere, the children hunt the many  colored
Easter  eggs, brought by the Easter rabbit.  This is the  vestige
of  a  fertility rite, the eggs and the rabbit  both  symbolizing
fertility.  The  rabbit was the escort of  the  Germanic  goddess
Ostara  who  gave her name to the festival by way of  the  German

The first day of Spring holds much in the way of folklore.  It is 
also  known  as the Spring Equinox, Ostara, Eostre’s  Day,  Alban
Eilir,  the  Vernal Equinox, or Festival of the Trees.  It  takes
place  between March 19 and 22.  It marks the first day  of  true
spring (verses the balmy weather that may procede it.)

The day and night is equal on this day, thus the name of Equinox.
There is a story in one culture that says that the sun has  begun
to  win it’s race with the night and that the days get longer  as
the sun pulls ahead. (Followed by the fact that the sun begins to
lose  the  race at Mid-Summer, and loses the race  at  Mid-Winter
just to start the race again the next day.)

It  is  a time of beginnings, of action, of  planting  seeds  for
future grains, and of tending gardens. On the first Sunday  after
the  first full moon following Eostre’s Day (the name from  which
the  Easter was derived), the Christian religion celebrates  it’s
Easter Day.

Spring  is  a time of the Earth’s renewal, a  rousing  of  nature
after the cold sleep of winter.  As such, it is an ideal time  to
clean your home to welcome the new season.

Spring cleaning is more than physical work.  Some cultures see it
as  a  concentrated  effort on their part to  rid  themselves  of
problems  and  negativity  of the past  months  and  tho  prepare
themselves for the coming spring and summer. 

To  do this, they approach the task of cleaning their homes  with
positive thoughts.  They believe that this frees the homes of the
hard  feelings brought about by a harsh winter. Even  then,  they
have  guidlines that they follow such as any scrubbing of  stains
or  hand  rubbing  the floors should be  done  in  a  “clockwise”
motion.   It is their belief that this aids in filling  the  home
with good energy for growth.

To the Druidic faith, this is a sacred day occuring in the  month
of  Fearn (meaning, “I am the shining tear of the Sun”). Part  of
thier  practices  are to clean and  rededicate  outdoor  shrines,
beliving that in doing so they honor the spring maiden.  This  is
a  time  of fertility of both crops and families.   In  promoting
crops,  they believe that the use of fire and water (the sun  and
rain)  will  reanimate all life on Earth.   They  decorate  hard-
boiled  eggs, the symbol of rebirth, to eat during  their  rites,
and  such foods as honey cakes and milk punch can also be  found.
The  mothers and daughters give dinners for each other  and  give
cards and gifts as a way of merging with the natural flow of life
and  with each other. (The Druids consider this also as  Mother’s

In Greek mythology, spring was the time when Persephone  returned
from  the  underworld (where the seed was planted in  the  barren
winter  months) and thus represents the seedlings of the  spring.
Demeter, Persephone’s mother represents the fertile earth and the
ripend  grain of harvest since it is alleged that she is the  one
that  created  the need to harvest crops when  her  daughter  was
kidnapped  and  taken  to  the underworld.   It  was  through  an
arrangement that her daughter could return for 1/2 the year  that
Demeter allowed the crops to spring forth for that time until she
again went into mourning for her daughter in the fall.

In some cultures, even today, the ones that continue to celebrate
the  rites  of  spring rise on Easter morning to  watch  the  sun
“Dance” as it rises.

The Christian festival commenmorating the resurrection of Christ,
synchronized  with  the  Jewish Pesach,  and  blended  since  the
earliest  days of Christianity with pagan European rites for  the
renewed  season.   In all countries Easter falls  on  the  Sunday
after  the  first  full moon on or following  March  21.   It  is
preceded by a period of riotous vegetation rites and by a  period
of  abstinence,  Lent (in Spain Cuaresma, Germany  Lenz,  central
Italy, Quaresima) and by special rites of Holy Week.

Everywhere  Easter  Sunday is welcomed with  rejoicing,  singing,
candle processionals, flowers in abundance, and ringing of church
bells.   Many pagan customs survive, such as the lighting of  new
fires  at  dawn, among the Maya as well as in Europe,  for  cure,
renewed life, and protection of the crops.  

May Day
The first day of May: observed as a spring festival everywhere in
Europe, the United States, and Canada, and as a labor festival in
certain European countries. 

Rites such as the ever famous May Pole occur in the town  squares
or  in the family’s front yard.  The gathering of green  branches
and  flowers on May Eve is the symbolic act of bringing home  the
May, i.e. bringing new life, the spring, into the village.

The  May Queen (and often King) is choosen from among  the  young
people, and they go singing from door to door throughout the town
carrying  flowers  or the May tree, soliciting  donations  for  a
merrymaking  in  return  for  the “blessing  of  May”.   This  is
symbolic of bestowing and sharing of the new creative power  that
is stirring in the world.  As the kids go from door to door,  the
May Bride often sings to the effect that those who give will  get
of nature’s bounty through the year.

In parts of France, some jilted youth will lie in a field on  May
Day  and  pretend to sleep.  If any village girl  is  willing  to
marry  him, she goes and wakes him with a kiss; the pair then  go
to  the village inn together and lead the dance  which  announces
their engagement.  The boy is called “the betrothed of May.”

This  festival is also known as Beltane, the Celtic May  Day.  It
officially  begins  at  moonrise on May Day Eve,  and  marks  the
beginning  of  the third quarter or second half  of  the  ancient
Celtic  year.   It is celebrated as an  early  pastoral  festival
accompanying the first turning of the herds out to wild  pasture. 
The  rituals  were held to promote fertility.   The  cattle  were
driven  between the Belfires to protect them from ills.   Contact
with the fire was interpreted as symbolic contact with the sun. 

The  rowan  branch  is hung over the house fire  on  May  Day  to
preserve  the fire itself from bewitchment (the house fire  being
symbolic of the luck of the house.

In early Celtic times, the druids kindled the Beltane fires  with
specific incantations.  Later the Christian church took over  the
Beltane  observances, a service was held in the church,  followed
by a procession to the fields or hills, where the priest  kindled
the fire.

In some rituals, a King and Queen May symbolize the male and female
principles of productivity.

We  have looked briefly at the similarities of  the  philosophies
and vocabularies, but is that all that they had in common?  Let’s
look at symbologies.