Dragons In Heraldry

Dragons In Heraldry


Even through times of persecution, the dragon did not fade from sight. In European countries, and China in particular, the draconic image remained alive in stories. European families, especially used the dragon in coats of arms. The European art of heraldry and coats of arms still employs the depiction of dragons in its art. The Prince of Wales has a red and gold dragon in his coat of arms and on his flag. The families of de Drago, von Drachenfels, de Draek, de Dragon de Ramillies, and Dragomanni, among others, all have a dragon on their coats of arms, as did the family of Sir Francis Drake.

In heraldry, a dragon with two legs is called a wyvern; a dragon without wings is a worm; a serpentine dragon with wings but no legs is an amphiptere; a dragon with wings and legs is termed a guivre. Further meaning of these draconic images was determined by how the dragon was posed: rampant (forelegs raised), a passant (one foreleg raised), statant (all four feet on the ground), wings endorsed (upright over the back), displayed or depressed tail nowed (knotted). Even further definition was determined by color: or (gold), gules (red), sable (black), or vert (green).

Dragons In Alchemy

Dragons In Alchemy


In alchemy, the dragon was considered to be matter, metal and the physical body. Often mentioned in conjunction with the dragon was the dragon’s sister: spirit, metallic mercury, and the soul. Ancient alchemy used the picture of a dragon or winged serpent as one of its many secret symbols. A common symbol of spiritual alchemical work was the dragon or serpent holding its tail in its mouth, an unending circle of eternity. Near this circled dragon was written the Greek motto “en to pan,” or “all is one.” The fabled Philosopher’s Stone of alchemy was also considered the One Which Is All. This Stone was closely connected in ancient writings with the Great Work of alchemy; the Great work simply means humankind becoming God, or merging with the Supreme Creative Forces within, thus completing the cycle of human growth by returning to the Source.

Jung wrote that the alchemists considered the winged dragon as female, the wingless dragons as male. Jung also considered water in dreams and analysis as unconscious spirit or the water dragon of Tao. This water dragon of Tao symbolized the yang embraced in the yin, or balanced growth in spirit. In Chinese Taoist symbolism, the dragon was seen as ‘the Way,” the bringer of eternal changes. Often in was depicted as guardian of the Flaming Pearl, or spiritual perfection. Joseph Campbell also speaks of the winged dragon or serpent as being the balance between Earth and Spirit. To the Chinese, the dragon was a potent symbol of luck and power. Silver dragon amulets were worn to help gain these qualities.

“Dancing with Dragons”

D. J. Conway

What are Dragons?

What are Dragons? 

Many cultures around the entire world have stories of dragons in one shape or another. Some are depicted as huge wingless serpents, other more like the traditional picture we of the Western world have of dragons: heavy bodied with wings. Dragons are shown with four legs, two legs, or no legs at all. Some dragons were said to have arrowhead-pointed tails, while others have spiked knob on the end of the tail. Some have twisted horns, others long antennae rather like those of moths. But the dragon, in whatever form, is there in thousands of folk stories, regardless of the description attached to it. Humankind has a subconscious knowledge of the dragon and its powers that even the assumed thin veneer of so-called civilizations cannot remove.

I discovered dragons and their potential powers years ago as a child. Being open-minded and noncritical, as most children are, I enjoyed the company of dragons, faeries, elves, and similar beings on a daily basis. My activity, however, was deeply frowned upon as “imagination.” I soon learned to keep quiet about my special ability in order to stay out of trouble with adults. Soon I began ignoring these others beings because I was afraid of making a slip and talking about them. Ridicule and punishment were severe when this happened; the subconscious negative programming had begun. When I finally rebelled against family control, I found the inner door not only shut, but locked. It took years of conscious retraining and experience before I could again understand how to call upon these beings, especially dragons, and use their magickal powers.

Negative programming has created havoc and unhappiness in a great many lives. This type of programming is inflicted upon others because of fear and a desire to control. The perpetrator forgets, or does not care, that they are dealing with an individual who has the right to her/his special abilities, dreams and goals in life. This happens not only to children, but to anyone who is less than sure of themselves, dependents upon someone else, or unable for whatever reason to leave the situation and people who are causing them great mental and emotional pain. If these beleaguered souls could make contact with their own special dragons, they could build the inner power to either remove themselves from the problem or at least refuse to accept the guilt, fear and control being placed upon them.

But what are dragons? Are the real or imaginary? In the Western world, our word dragon comes from the Greek drakon and the Latin draco. Drakon comes from a verb meaning to see, to look at, or possibly to flash. Certainly in most legends dragons spend their time watching, whether it be treasure, territory, or the supposedly captive maidens. The word “dragon” is used in many different fields, as diverse as astrology, astronomy, alchemy, magick, heraldry, psychology and the study of dreams. From the time that humans began to record things, dragons have been mentioned.

“Dancing with Dragons”

D. J. Conway

Neo-Paganism: What is it?

Neo-Paganism: What is it?

Author: Crick

Neo-Paganism. What is it?

There is an old adage that no one is an island unto himself or herself. Which I believe is a prelude to the adage that misery loves company.

As a witch I walk this world as one who truly feels alone. Am I an island? Absolutely not, just a tired old soul who sees the world as it truly is.

I see the same level of hypocrisy within the pagan community as I see in the organized religions perhaps because so many who call themselves pagan today were members of those organized religions yesterday. Or perhaps it’s just because people in general tend to be apathetic when it comes to any real effort to grow spiritually.

I see the same insecurities in folks regardless of their chosen beliefs. By insecurities I refer to the way that folks claim to be individuals and yet they live and die each day by what others are doing and/or say. Such folks spend more of their time making judgments about others then they do asking how they can better themselves spiritually.

And so in general, we as a species continue to mouth the words and yet do just the opposite.
There are those who claim to be pagan and yet spend most of their time increasing the artificial lifestyle they have created for themselves. They do this knowing full well that such an artificial lifestyle comes at the expense of Mother Gaia. Raping and pillaging Mother Gaia is something that the human species is very adept at. If only so much time and effort were directed at improving the condition of our world. But then to do that we as a species would have to stop being so self centered and selfish and actually live up to the values that we claim to engage.
And so exactly what defines Neo-Paganism in today’s world?

Is it simply a way of being different in ones mind and yet the same in ones actions? Much like the teenager of every single generation who seeks to establish an individual identity even though in all reality they are following the same trail already unfolded before them.

Is Neo-Paganism, which in all reality is a revival of that which existed openly before the advent of organized religion, a true attempt to break away from the established mode of society as it presents itself today?

Do those who call themselves pagan in today’s world have the desire and discipline to break away from the established mindset?

After all, such folks come from a society where no one is to blame, unless it is the other guy who is at fault. They come from a world where the ego seems to reign supreme over human humility. Even though such displays of egotism is simply an acknowledgement of ones personal insecurities.

In some parts of the pagan community, paganism is used to control the hearts and minds of others in much the same way that organized religions attempt to do so. There are certain pagan groups who seek to set themselves as above others who reside under the same pagan umbrella. Is such personal control over others and elitism the definition of Neo-Paganism?

Do folks in today’s mystical society have any established concept of what it is that they believe in as pagans?

Judging from all of the maneuvering to be seen as the “master” by so many who really have no clue, and judging from all of the infighting amongst various pagan individuals and groups, one has to wonder if there is any coherent concept that one could apply to the description; Neo-Pagan.

Such a general concept should apply not only in description but in action as well. Granted there are “individuals” who walk the walk, but these folks are often set upon by those who claim to follow the same tenets as they apply to the general parameters of paganism. And so the hypocrisy continues unabated, for these folks are within the minority of a minority belief system.

And so one has to wonder if Neo-Paganism is truly an effort to establish a nature based belief system which is empowered by a people who actually put forth effort to acquire a higher sense of self. Or is it just a continuation of the same lack of principles and personal discipline that defines modern society, albeit under a different title.

I personally believe that the jury is still out on this last musing. In my personal opinion, if one is to follow the path of paganism in whatever form, then one needs to develop a sense of unbiased honesty. For in my mind, true paganism begins with one’s own spirit. There are no masters in this weary world of ours. We are all simply students of life, each seeking the lessons that befit them. Perhaps once we realize this we can begin the real work of identifying our own faults and worry less about the faults of others. Only then will we be able to separate ourselves from the status quo of today’s world and perhaps then we can add a real meaning to the definition of Neo-Paganism.

Are you one of those who believe that Neo-Paganism is all about Light and Love? Are you being realistic to yourself? For in all reality our pagan ancestors were quite adept at mayhem and war. One has to realize that there has to be dark in order for there to be light. This is polarity in its truest form. And even the various pantheons around the world contain those who were of an unsavory nature. It is how we balance these two aspects that define our lives regardless of which path we choose to follow. But one without the other is simply an empty facade.

In closing, how many hours this past week did you sit in front of a TV or a computer? How many hours this past week did you walk amongst the trees and listen to the birds sing or gaze up at the moon at night with unadulterated love? It is by these simple actions that we as “individuals” contribute to the definition of Neo-Paganism.

Are you content with your contribution?

Samhain Verse

Samhain Verse

by Pat Califia

The grapes must be cut down
Or no one but the bees
Will be drunk next summer.
They are full of juice,
Tight-skinned like the testicles
Of a boy with his first shadowed chin.

The harvesters move, row by row,
Unburdening the vines
And making the bees angry.
The grapes are trampled, then put away
While the darkness works its magic.

Not all harvests are so orderly
Comes a day when chaos pours out
Along with the blood of the grape.
Threshing ground and trampling vat
Are abandoned for a wilder dance
In the green meadows, high on the hills.
Where the elder trees of the forest
Still remember their sisters,
Who once cast their leaves and shadows
Upon the floor of the valley.
The plow may subdue the earth, for now.
But the wilderness remembers its ancient boundaries.

And as the sun goes down, Dionysus appears
To dance among his feral women,
His own life safe
Only as long as they can sieze and rend
Anything else athwart their path –
And the wine holds out.
The dance as if they were trampling
The fruit of the vine,
But the red stain has crept
Much higher than their ankles.
They wear golden bells and the skins of leopards.
The hunt has made them happy at last.

If the women cannot kill the god
Who pretends to direct them,
They will take the head of any man
Who struggles to remain upright
When madness has become a virtue
And everything forbidden is permitted.
Backs straight as if they had forgotten.

A lifetime of toiling over field and stove,
The prancing shrieking women dress
Their fores in ivy and demand
They bend their knees or hit the ground
To service what can never be tamed altogether.

The darkness works its magic.
The grapes must be cut down.
A plowshare may be hammered
From a sword,
And just as easily turned
Once more into a weapon
With enough force, enough heat, and
Hard punches from a hammer.
Women are so dangerous
When they become overheated.

Only the profligate might survive this night
And waken eager to drink
Still more of the grape god’s blood,
To help them forget the fences
That were so easily trampled down
Within the walls of this temperate town.

(Reprinted with permission from Pat Califia’s newest book, Diesel Fuel. Pat Califia’s WWW page address is http://www.patcalifia.com)

Number of the Day for October 2nd: 1

It’s a take charge day in which you should rely on yourself. Thanks to your focus and independence, a project may finally reach completion, or you may start on a new challenge. You may have an important introduction to someone new. Material losses are likely, however, so make sure to remember your keys, wallet, etc.

Fast Facts

About the Number 1

Theme: Masculine, Creative, Independent, Aggressive
Astro Association: Mercury
Tarot Association: Magician

Today’s Runes for Sunday, October 2nd is Fehu

Today’s Runes

Stone Runes are most commonly used for questions about the natural world and things beyond human control. Fehu represents cattle the Norse symbol of wealth. This rune has some interesting implications based on the fact that cattle, unlike land, move about of their own accord. Cattle also reproduce, so this rune often speaks of wealth that renews or perpetuates itself. Wealth takes many forms, but this rune generally represents the value that is purely material or monetary in nature. Alternatively, this rune is deeply associated with Frey, and hence can be the harbinger of fertility and children.

Today’s Tarot Card for October 2nd is The Devil

The Devil

This Tarot Deck: Folklore

General Meaning:What has traditionally been known as the Devil card expresses the realm of the Taboo, the culturally rejected wildness and undigested shadow side that each of us carries in our subconscious. This shadow is actually at the core of our being, which we cannot get rid of and will never succeed in taming. From its earliest versions, which portrayed a vampire-demon, this card evoked the Church-fueled fear that a person could “lose their soul” to wild and passionate forces.The image which emerged in the mid-1700’s gives us a more sophisticated rendition — that of the “scapegoated Goddess,” whose esoteric name is Baphomet. Volcanic reserves of passion and primal desire empower her efforts to overcome the pressure of stereotyped roles and experience true freedom of soul. Tavaglione’s highly evolved image (Stella deck) portrays the magical formula for harnessing and transmuting primal and obsessive emotions into transformative energies. As a part of the Gnostic message of Tarot, this fearsome passion and power must be reintegrated into the personality, to fuel the soul’s passage from mortal to immortal.

Daily Horoscopes for Sunday, October 2

The philosophical Sagittarius Moon inspires us to turn little thoughts into big ideas, and molehills into mountains. Our minds are filled with a variety of bold schemes and visionary dreams. Whether we’re thinking about embarking on a new course of study or our next great adventure, we are setting a mental stage for what comes next. Meanwhile, four planets in Libra are still reminding us to balance our grand plans with a bit of common sense.


Aries Horoscope
Aries Horoscope (Mar 21 – Apr 19)

Although you may be eager for the good times ahead, something could happen that catches you off guard today. Even if there isn’t anything to do in preparation for a surprise, it’s important to remember that reacting with self-restraint is smarter than going to extremes. You might want to respond quickly, but thinking about the consequences of your words or actions first is a very wise plan.

Taurus Horoscope
Taurus Horoscope (Apr 20 – May 20)

You may attempt to be cool now by downplaying your desires, but the Moon’s visit to your 8th House of Intimacy has you thinking about warmer things. You might just throw caution to the wind and surprise someone with your blunt approach. Your boldness may be what’s necessary to overcome the resistance, even if you hadn’t previously thought out your strategy. You might act without a plan, yet the results could be to your liking.

Gemini Horoscope
Gemini Horoscope (May 21 – Jun 20)

Usually it’s everyone else who holds things together while you flit from one idea to another. However, you may need to shift your tactics now if others are acting indecisively or advising you to take a risk by stepping beyond your normal limits. But don’t blame anyone else for your current discomfort. Instead, be as flexible as possible; you might be pleasantly pleased when your gamble turns out in your favor.

Cancer Horoscope
Cancer Horoscope (June 21 – Jul 22)

You may experience a breakthrough in awareness by realizing how you can improve your day without jeopardizing the parts that are already meeting your expectations. But having a good idea isn’t significant unless you put your new plan into motion. Don’t attempt to do too much today; it’s better to take baby steps toward a healthy goal than giant steps leading the wrong way.

Leo Horoscope
Leo Horoscope (Jul 23 – Aug 22)

Your enthusiasm could grow out of hand today, even if you believe that you can’t do anything wrong. You might inadvertently offend someone unless you exercise self-restraint. You may come across as overbearing, leading others to think that you’re hiding something. Although this is not likely what’s happening, it’s still smart to avoid this false impression by acting less aggressively. Remember, you don’t need to work so hard to get others to understand your intentions.

Virgo Horoscope
Virgo Horoscope (Aug 23 – Sep 22)

You usually prefer to take things step by step, but your current excitement may trick you into making lots of changes right away. Unfortunately, following through with your intentions can be difficult if you move too quickly. Although it sounds counterintuitive, you’ll accomplish more if you take your time today. Slow down and get it right the first time instead of having to do everything over again.

Libra Horoscope
Libra Horoscope (Sep 23 – Oct 22)

Recent decisions could be critical to your long-term plans, so reconsider your choices before they are set in stone. You would be wise to take time now to contemplate your goals and the most efficient way to reach them. Don’t try to justify your lack of productivity today or you might miss your chance to see the bigger picture. Instead of getting caught up in the excitement of the moment, keep your eyes on the prize.

Scorpio Horoscope
Scorpio Horoscope (Oct 23 – Nov 21)

Your anticipation of the next phase of your life continues to grow, but it’s still too soon to make your move. Nevertheless, big changes are already coming your way and you could see things very differently within a couple of weeks. Resist jumping to any half-baked conclusions today; there’s still more you can learn prior to making a fully informed choice.

Sagittarius Horoscope
Sagittarius Horoscope (Nov 22 – Dec 21)

Although you’re enjoying the upbeat energy and thinking how you could get used to things going your way, nothing is permanent. It isn’t that anything’s going to change today; it’s just that your unrestrained optimism can make you complacent and set you up for disappointment later on. Positive thoughts are powerful, but overconfidence is not, especially if you talk yourself out of putting in extra effort. Remember, if something is important to you, do it right for the sake of your own integrity.

Capricorn Horoscope
Capricorn Horoscope (Dec 22 – Jan 19)

You may be feeling pressure to expand your field of operations, but might resist because you’re not sure that you can deliver on what’s expected of you. Nevertheless, you have a few well-rehearsed tricks up your sleeve that enable you to surpass even the harshest of judgments. Unfortunately, you’re unable to objectively reflect on your own performance now. Hang tight; an energetic shift within a couple of days should clear your thinking and set you on your way.

Aquarius Horoscope
Aquarius Horoscope (Jan 20 – Feb 18)

You might be dreaming about some far-off adventure now, even if you’re challenged by current circumstances to come back to the present moment. But nothing is to be gained from indulging in self-criticism because your mind is likely to wander all over the mental landscape today, no matter what. Fortunately, your active fantasy life will settle down after a night of restful sleep.

Pisces Horoscope
Pisces Horoscope (Feb 19 – Mar 20)

You prefer to maintain a rational view about your current relationships, yet logic won’t tell the whole story today. Being cautious is the safest way for some people to move through unknown territory, but you Fish are naturally at home swimming in the boundless waters of feelings. However, you might feel as if you’re stranded on a desert island now without any emotional nourishment in sight. Don’t worry; this temporary drought won’t last long.

the daily humorscopes for sunday, october 2nd

the daily humorscope 

Sunday, October 02, 2011

Aries (March 21 – April 19)
Three kings from arid countries will wander by, leading their horses, and apparently searching for something. This will seem innocuous at first, but later, you’ll start to worry.
Taurus (April 20 – May 20)
Today you will finally get to push the big red button! The main question is now…what are you going to do with the rest of your life? The answer, naturally, is “worm farming.”
Gemini (May 21 – June 20)
This is a good day to bake. Cinnamon rolls would be good. Or perhaps some crusty bread. If you follow my advice, you will make friends and influence people. Otherwise a horrifying fate awaits you. No pressure, though. Do what you feel is right for you.
Cancer (June 21 – July 22)
You will be hired as a cook/housekeeper for 7 extremely short gentlemen, who all live together. Stay away from apples, for a while.
Leo (July 23 – August 22)
Squid day, again. Try to make the most of it. Perhaps you could go around with a bucket of squid, and give one to each of your neighbors? Chances are you don’t know them as well as you should, and this will make sure nobody feels guilty about that in the future.
Virgo (August 23 – September 22)
In an unfortunate turn of events, someone sitting across from you will have a peculiar variant of a bad hair day…a bad nosehair day.
Libra (September 23 – October 22)
You’re having trouble getting your elderly relatives to pay attention to you. Have you tried talking with a Scandinavian accent and using a soap bubble machine? That, and accordion music, always do the trick for me.
Scorpio (October 23 – November 21)
Today will be mostly OK, except that you’ll learn to pay more attention in the future to the phrase “Careful, filling is hot!”.
Sagittarius (November 22 – December 21)
You’ll find more, and very “interesting”, uses for cocktail umbrellas today.
Capricorn (December 22 – January 20)
Today is an excellent day to wink slyly at people, just as they are turning away. When they look back, smile innocently.
Aquarius (January 21 – February 18)
Beware of short people.
Pisces (February 19 – March 20)
Time to stop beating around the bush. Beat the bush itself. Give it a good thrashing, and say “bad bush!” in a loud stern tone.

The Broom Closet

The Broom Closet
By Ezevia Rose

My friends have brooms
I have one too
They sweep with theirs
I do too

My friends have knives
I have one too
They use it to cut
I do too

My friends have goblets
I have one too
They drink their wine
I do too

My friends have tables
I have one too
They gather round
As I do too

Now they wonder what makes me different?
If they only knew!

My broom’s a besom
My knife an athame
My goblet a chalice
My table an altar

I use them for ritual
I use them each day
I pray to Goddess
Every day

Now you know I am a Witch
They do not
Can they accept it?
Sometimes I fear not

I wish they would
Let me sweep my own way
And say prayers the Matriarch way
The Earth could be happy
And we could be too
This Samhain Night
I pray for them too

By Ezevia Rose

About the Author: Ezevia Rose, 51 is a wife of 28 years, mother of a son 24 and daughter 26 and a grandmother of a 7 1/2 year old, who she says is the spark of her life as are her children. She is also a teacher of young children and owns her own school,(23 years in business and growing) which, she says is not only her livelihood but her life. She is also a singer and an artist, with a B.A. degree in Elem. Ed and Art Ed., she loves animals, reading and gardening, and says musical instruments and books are her vices.

Living a Magickal Life

I ran across the following article several days ago. I have been aiming to share it with you but got busy updating the blog. The article first caught my eye, which is unusual because I seldom read short ones. Then I got to reading it, the article really touched my heart and soul as Samhain approaches. I hope you enjoy it……..

Living a Magickal Life
By Lotus Moonwise

It might seem strange to tell a story about Beltane in an issue about Samhain, but the two go hand in hand. Beltane is about manifesting the Goddess externally, through union with others and the World around us. Samhain is about manifesting Her internally, by going within, connecting with the deepest parts of yourself, and allowing Her messages to come to you
from across the thin veil.

Last Beltane, I was just coming down from an intense “expansion” phase, working hard, making major changes in my life and was feeling uncentered, caught up in a frantic, unnatural pace. I felt like I was going around and around in circles in my mind, feeling so overwhelmed with all I had to get done that I couldn’t get anything done and was beginning to feel more and
more paralyzed and disconnected from my Spirit. I wondered how I was going to find the energy to organize a big Beltane celebration, like I do every year. The more I thought about it, the more I felt sure, I just didn’t have it in me this year. So I threw my hands up in surrender and made the decision to “skip” the Sabbat.

On the Thursday afternoon before the weekend of Beltane, my husband came home and told me he’d gotten a surprise bonus at work. That same day, my friend called and said she was in a jam and needed some money and offered to watch my three kids for the weekend in exchange for the cash she needed. Everything was suddenly in place for a quiet weekend away.

I wanted something in the mountains, near a river. I found this place that looked perfect and I called up the reservation company. It was booked, but they had just had someone call earlier that day to cancel, so had an opening for another house. It was in the mountains, down a dead end dirt road, at the point where two rivers meet. They call it Two Rivers Cottage. We booked it on the spot. What followed was two days and nights of intense, deep quiet, cradled by the one I love with the forest surrounding us like a blanket. We made love by the huge stone hearth, cooked a feast for two, and enjoyed the fullness of silence, together.

As I sat near the hearth, with my tarot cards laid out, Hecate kept coming up – showing me the crossroads. And it hit me when I looked at the image. The two roads… the two rivers….they were just outside my door. I put on my coat and walked outside. I stood at the point where the two rivers converge into one, and heard the message She whispered in my ear : it doesn’t matter which path you choose, it’s all leading you home. I heard the words of a song flow through my heart…”there’s no need for turning back, for all roads lead to where we stand, and I believe we walk them all, no matter what we may have planned.” I felt like a huge weight was lifted off my shoulders. I could relax. I didn’t have to figure everything out right now. It was enough to just be here, in this space with Her, loving myself and loving the moment.

The weekend was magickal. And even though I hadn’t planned anything for this holy day –the Goddess had planned something for me. A weekend of pure, loving union between the God and Goddess, embodied within us and expressed through us in the most natural and effortless way possible.

As Samhain approaches, I reflect on the magick in my life, the gifts from the Goddess, and the sense of trust and allowing that has become the cornerstone of my faith. This time of year, especially, I am reminded how to live a magickal life, day in and day out. Living a magickal life is about allowing the Universe to express itself through you. As you pay attention to the subtle clues She leaves along the way, a path of possibilities is paved. Every question is answered before it’s asked. In the moment of need, all things are already there, in your life, placed there by your Goddess self before you even knew you needed them.

Blessed Samhain to all…….

(Song lyrics by Don McLean)

About The Author: Lotus Moonwise is a High Priestess and leader of a small family circle. She walks a wise woman path, recognizing the union of the spiritual world with the physical. She considers herself an eclectic hearth witch, honoring her home, family and circle of community as the central focus of her service to the Goddess. She is a massage therapist, Reiki
master, writer, and artist and lives in Portland, Oregon with her husband, three children and three cats.