‘THINK on THESE THINGS’
By Joyce Sequichie Hifler
Have you even known someone whose very presence comforted you? They seem to have no need of words but their quiet companionship soothes like balm to the soul: these are your kindred souls who have already been the route you’re traveling, or are just ahead and leaning back to take your hand.
Wherever you are on the path of life, there have been many there before you. It may seem the loneliness of the road has many empty echoes. But there have been many good people concerned enough to make an effort to mark the rougher places to allow your journey easier traveling.
And like all travelers we must look for those signs and make them more plain to the ones who will follow.
And then, in quiet communication, we can each take our turn by understanding.
How often we see people who desperately need our help. We would like to help them, but we put it out of our minds because it seems beyond our means and beyond our strength. We use the excuse that we have enough problems of our own without going out on a limb for someone else. Charity begins at home and at home and at home.
If we have the true desire, and the welfare of someone else in our sights, we can ask divine guidance, and we will receive help. If help does not come, it is because we were not truly serious. Or perhaps whatever we wanted to do was not in the best interests of all concerned. Our help may only have slowed their progress or weakened their efforts. If our desires are worthy we need to have no fear that a way will come to help.
The desire to help is a divine gift, and we accept it most beautifully by using it.
Available online! ‘Cherokee Feast of Days’
By Joyce Sequichie Hifler.
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Elder’s Meditation of the Day
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Elder’s Meditation of the Day May 9
“Without a sacred center, no one knows right from wrong.”
—- Thomas Yellowtail, CROW
In the center of the circle is where the powers reside. These powers are called love, principle, justice, spiritual knowledge, life, forgiveness and truth. All these powers reside in the very center of the human being. We access these powers by being still, quieting the mind. If we get confused, emotionally upset, feel resentment, anger, or fear, the best thing we can do is pray to the Great Spirit and ask Him to remove the anger and resentment. By asking Him to remove these obstacles, we are automatically positioned in the sacred center. Only in this way do we know right from wrong.
Great Spirit, allow me this day to live in the sacred center.
May 9 – Daily Feast
Sentences half spoken and beyond total hearing are the source of difficulty. Only in the bright light of reason and understanding can these cloudy mishaps be corrected. Some are simply tuned to hear the negative – even when it was never intended to be. They hear with an ear that is already bent toward trouble and only too willing to pass it on. We might consider what we want to hear – because everyone has moments when words tumble out with little meaning. Whether it is a slip of the tongue or simply filling in a quiet spell, we are sometimes guilty of speaking when we should have been listening. The tongue is a little member and sometimes kindles quite a fire when it should spit on the matches.
~ We are becoming like them…..all talkers and no workers. ~
‘A Cherokee Feast of Days’, by Joyce Sequichie Hifler
Always your choice
When life hands you a negative experience, respond with a positive action. Instead of letting the difficult circumstances pull you down, choose to let them inspire you.
Sure, it’s easy to become dismayed. Yet the truly empowering fact is that it’s just as easy to become determined.
Your attitude is always your choice. So you might as well choose the attitude that will serve you the very best.
When you find yourself feeling angry, cynical, disillusioned, resentful, worried or apathetic, stop. Choose to use those negative feelings as a positive trigger.
Aim your focus in the direction of your best possibilities. Take quick, decisive action in support of those possibilities.
You are in control of your attitude, your thoughts and your actions. So choose to be positive, forward-looking, creative and effective no matter what may come your way.
— Ralph Marston
Using Yourself as a Pendulum
Intuitive Guidance from Within
by Madisyn Taylor
Using your body as a pendulum is another tool you can use to access your higher wisdom.
Learning to trust our intuition is something that can connect us with our higher selves. Sometimes it might not seem easy to do this. Our thoughts and minds often get in the way. But by accessing our innermost self, we will find that the information we receive is usually what we truly need at that moment. One of the techniques that allows us to really get in touch with our deepest font of wisdom is using our body as a pendulum. The simple act of letting our physical being lead us in a certain direction can offer us extremely deep insights and help us find the answers we seek.
Many of us may have tried using a pendulum or crystal on a chain as a dousing tool to acquire the information we need to make decisions or even find lost objects. Using our bodies puts us much more closely in tune with our being. The process of using your body as a pendulum is to ask your higher self a question and wait for your body to respond in either a forward-tilting or backward-tilting motion. The first step is to really understand how our higher self communicates with us by centering our bodies, asking ourselves the directions for “yes” and “no,” and noting which way our body moves. For a lot of people a forward motion is “yes,” and your body tilting backward is a “no” answer. It is easier to start with simple questions at first to understand how our higher self communicates with us. As we become more used to the messages we receive and how we process them, we can start asking for more specific things such as what dosage of herbs to take or which foods would best nourish our bodies. Using this technique in the grocery store or when shopping for vitamins and remedies can be extremely helpful.
Since we are always present in our bodies, understanding how we can use our bodies as pendulums is a tool we can use at any given moment in our lives. Letting our bodies tell us what is happening inside of us will in turn help to guide us through not just daily but also major life decisions. The more we allow our bodies to open up and share with us the connection it has with our deeper self, the better able we will be to truly access the knowledge we hold so deeply within.
Witchcraft, the Arte, the Craft, Magick, the Old Religion – what could these names possibly mean to an 18-year-old male living in an age of global warming, rapid deforestation, tyrannical war and occupation, fundamentalist literature and humanist rationalism? They are the faces of a largely spiritual movement, grounded in the sacred powers of Nature, from which the Old Gods themselves draw their strength and mystery.
My name is Gede Parma. I am an 18-year-old male Witch currently residing in Queensland, Australia. I am an initiate and co-founder of the dynamic Pagan wellspring that is the Coven of the WildWood, and I am priest and vessel to my Gods of Blood and of Breath.
My Pagan peers know me as Dobhair (pronounced ‘door’ with a soft accent in the middle), which is the name my ancestors revealed to me during last year’s solar eclipse as I dedicated myself to the Dagda and Morgaine le Fay. In this time of the Greening much will be seen to come to pass and the world will change in a way that none of us could ever have conceived.
I stand as the Rod of Power, as the Menhir, the Tree of Life, to whom my veneration is given in circles with my coven. As I focus inward so does my breath circulate into the outer realms, my consciousness expanding and taking into itself the divinity that is immanent within all of Life. I remember the animating force behind all that is and dance the spiral path of change and transformation into the very heart of the primal womb whose centre is the point of origin.
From the beginning I was Air, from whose new dawn’s breath ‘I’dea was formed. I was then fuelled by the heat of Fire, and light and warmth gave way to the oceanic-matrix that is the Water and blood-ways became rivers and streams in the body of the Goddess.
By Spirit and the Great Mystery I was given form and beauty and Earth’s presence and foundation continued the cycle, and when my thread is cut by the tides of Fate I will fall to the winds once more to decay with the autumn foliage under the slanted glare of a fading king whose sun sets in the realms of Death.
I am resurrected and born again by Love and by Light, and the Two Pillars join the heavens to the broad earth, from whom once more I will spring up as Kore, the sprout. From Death comes Life, and in Life there is Love, and the Mystery knows them all.
These are the mysteries that have been written of and told to others whose minds and hearts are listening, however their far-reaching and infinite truths are not simply grasped by an eloquent intellect or by the ascetics of a world-rejecting discipline.
Witchcraft to a teen in the 21st century has not lost its Great Mystery. We are still as the priests and priestesses of old who stole away to secret orders nestled in ‘tween places. We are still as the seers and shamans whose journeys remain intrinsically-patterned into our wild and unkempt spirits. We are Witches and by solitude or tribe we still raise the Power to celebrate the ecstasies of Life. I have never forgotten this charge and I have made it my oath to the Old Ones to continue to impart this knowledge and wisdom on those who have ears to listen.
There is immense power in the old mythos. They speak of Gods and Goddesses who inspire and protect their own, of ancient magicks whose powers awaken in the hearts of those who embrace the old ways. There is descent into the netherworld, and resurrection in the light of day. There are ancestors who kindle the hearth-fires and who gather us in to be warmed when way-ward our feet have taken us.
There are oceans and seas that speak of death and devotion. There are groves and mounds and stone-circles who whisper of ancient rites and who glisten and vibrate with the dragon-lines that sing through the land. There are wheels that spin and turn, and bring awareness to the cycles of Nature, to the implicit realities and cause us to revel in the wonder that is the blue sky and the green tree.
These things, these memories are not cast out or forgotten by the Witches of today, they are embraced and renewed by those of us who seek to rejoin and reconnect with the Wyrd, whose keepers, though at times stern, remind us to dance and to make Magick in their honor.
When the Pagan community regards its youths and also their influx into the tribes, they often forget that once upon time that was them. There are many who revile and resent the young folk who seek out the ancient wisdom and who practice the rites of the Craft. They seem to think that in doing so we desecrate their sacred power, or playfully twist and manipulate to achieve our own selfish and incorrigible ends.
Anyone who truly kneels at the Altar or draws the Circle of Power knows to what effect their pure Will can achieve. Those who are simply involved for the ‘glamour’ and the ‘prestige’ soon draw back when they discover what perfect love and perfect trust truly means.
So those of us who still remain after the year and a day and whose understanding has strengthened and whose energy has intensified should be known to all others who walk the spiral-ways as honest and humble devotees.
I will never forget the moment when I became a respected member of my community and was taken by my word for my word. It was as if all my potential became actualized and I could evolve and transform into a new identity, into a new persona. But personas are masks and identities fade, and through this time I began to feel again the pulse in the deepest part of me.
The façade had broken.
I didn’t need their recognition, their support, though it helped immensely in times of grief. What I needed was my connection, to awaken the divinity that is indwelling. It didn’t take long before one Goddess chose to love me and to pour into me what was already at my core. She is beauty; she is truth. She is power and she is that quintessential feeling that resonates through all my fragments, and whose veil covers not to hide, but to symbolize the other reality, that is always waiting, on the other side.
My life is enriched through my Craft. I am joined with all of Nature. I breathe on the mountain and I lose all ego-attachment, and it strikes me that all I am doing is breathing and existing, just as all other beings that dance through the cycles are.
My Gods speak to me through my descent and through my spirit. Their names are not written as a list of spiritual acquisitions, but as powers and forces that have revealed themselves to me, and have chosen to become my allies.
To be a Witch is not to forsake the divine bounty that is made apparent when we learn to trust, but to identify and understand the patterns of power that weave through the fibres of Life and manifest as expressions of innate and intimate truths. We celebrate this continuum of divine-play and revel in becoming a part of it.
I am a Witch, not because I was genetically made to be so (though that adds to it), and not because of some deep-set desire to conquer the plain drudgery and live out a fantasy of power and privilege.
I am a Witch because in my heart lives Magick and to deny its passage, its flow, would be to deny the very essence of my purpose here on Earth, and of my many lives before my present that have been sacrificed to continue the charge I was given.
As I dance the Wheel and as I draw the Circle I remember that I am different. It is not merely a contrast I draw between my nature and those of others, or an indulgent delusion I use to place myself higher than the rest. I am different in that the unfeeling, ego-ridden, politically-driven paradigm that our societies are built on rejects or else wholly negates who I am and what I do.
There is no room in this world, they say, for enchantment and Magick. There is no place for story-telling or dancing. Everything I am and everything I stand for is declared non-existent or irrational at best and Witchcraft is made out to be nothing more than a childish game.
Witches were once respected and revered for their skill, insight and power. In a sense this manifests today as the curious intrigue one feels toward the ‘supernatural’. Witches today are feared, maligned or ridiculed.
We are feared by the ignorant, maligned by the ‘pious’, and ridiculed by the so-called rationalists. However there are those among the liberally-minded communities who celebrate us as true visionaries in our right and who are inclined to study our spirituality in a bid to reclaim the lost wisdom.
There are few words that I can conjure that truly define my being. One of these is ‘Witch’. I embrace it wholly, in every way, for in doing so I reclaim the power that was once considered a gift. It is never a curse to realize truth and never a burden to uphold and live by it.
My Magick is a gift that I will pass on to the next generation of Witches, however at this point in time I work to encourage and inspire this generation. In my coven we circle every week and in between the esbats and sabbats we devote our circles to specific topics so that we may expand our knowledge and add to our magickal arsenal.
In the past we have discussed sacred tools, the Elementals, visualization, meditation and divination. Generally I take on the guise of the teacher as it suits me and I have a considerable amount of knowledge and practical experience in these areas.
The Witches of my coven are strong and steadfast spiritual beings, however we are all still human and prone to making mistakes. This is the reality of the Witch, especially as teenagers. We may be able to cast spells, transcend our egos, invoke ancient Gods and project our astral selves, but this does not exempt us from the everyday trials that bombard humanity.
As Witches, however, we make use of our knowledge of the subtle energies within and without and choose to take charge of our destinies accordingly. Perhaps it is this aspect of the Craft, more so than anything else, that truly frightens those who are not privy to the inner mysteries.
I am a Witch, pure and simple. You could tie to me to a stake, throw driftwood at my feet, drench me in gas and light a fire and I would not deny it.
I am a child of Nature, a Pagan and a priest. I dance the spiral-way and as I descend into the holy labyrinth I sing the old songs and chants to the Gods of leaf and bud, hoof and horn. I release tire and stress, exertion and envy to the four winds and I become the glowing scepter, the sword, and the spear. The serpentine force is aroused and it journeys upward along the spine to the crown that is the triangle of manifestation.
There I meet the Great Mystery and kneel to her charge as I feel the edge of her sword cut cleanly along my soul to my beating heart aflame with Magick.
Go in the way of the sacred, Blessed Be~
Author: Lady Sindy Aine
I am a 5th generation Witch. I have a bloodline inside of me that derives from Witches as far back as my Great-Great Grandmother. As far as we know, it could go back further I really don’t know the trail gets a little obscured in Italy where my family line comes from.
Having a firm grip on ritual and celebrations we also have a darker side of the family, not being able to give names nor would I want to but I would have to say the power of a determined Witch is unmatchable, very frightening as well.
Do you believe that from a very old family that such negativity could linger through the bloodlines not affecting all of us but enough to cause much anguish? How does one deal with the fall of a family member whom was brought up with all the same beliefs and structure… knowing all that we know, not allowing any room for mistakes that would show a disregard for what we are, what we stand for, or allow?
The subject of a fallen Witch is the pinnacle of what our family now refers to as a disgrace. Over the years, I have seen the damage that negative energies can do, not in such a direct way as when I looked into this person’s eye and saw such contempt for what is good and right in nature and life with such a disregard and hollowness that eludes me to this day.
As an old family of Witches, we know the horrible consequences of these actions. We have seen them firsthand and even with that, no warnings, no obvious signs, or even actual three-fold rules come to light to affect this person. Nothing has made these actions come to a stop. How do the negative energies engulf someone so fully? How does the purity of this beautiful harmonic natural religion fall victim to such darkness?
It is out there, it is seductive, and it is horrifying.
We all know for a fact that the yin and the yang have to exist, but that they have to exist in your own family makes it so much harder to grasp. I know this seems like a fairytale with a wicked Witch. I assure you, no one else can be appreciative of this accept for people of similar knowledge.
I feel an obligation to bring some attention to the other side that we all know too well exists. I would normally live and let live, however we are faced with this in a very personal way that allows me to convey to you that it hurts to watch someone empower themselves in this way.
I know some dabble in this area hoping for something powerful and I see how it is enticing but do they see what the consequences can be? And what if anything can one family do?
Much like an intervention for an addict in your family we have attempted discussions. This is an incredibly difficult situation. This person knows what is right and chooses to continue on this path. I fear for everyone involved. Never have I tried so hard to bring enlightenment to one person.
As a family, we have cast circles in complete dedication to this cause and still nothing. We have tried to dispel all negativity and sought our elders for guidance — again nothing. We are sneered at by this person — laughed at and ridiculed; still we try.
Allowing this to continue is unthinkable. It is eating this person alive like a cancer throughout their entire being. We have been fighting this for many years, not achieving any level of success.
The eldest member of our family, my Grandmother who is in her nineties and still very active in her beliefs has visions, which do not bode well for this person. Her wisdom tells us to allow this. That it is meant to be.
All that we can do as a family is place blessings of protection on this person and all whom may be harmed. We all keep hoping for a much better outcome. Letting go of someone you love is very painful. Not knowing what is going to happen is even more painful.
The simplest offering I have is to allow yourself the right to allow someone else the right to choose their own path without allowing indifference to encompass your being and change your views. Sometimes you have to just let life happen and hope for the best.
“We are no better than anyone else or any other path that is chosen, if all is for the purpose of good we can conquer anything in time, all will right itself”. That is a quote from Grandmother; she is a very wise woman.
I have come to the realization that this is not just a character flaw, but also something much more, very much more. I believe that this is what comes of wading in darker waters and allowing yourself to be immersed by the cold and eventually to drown in the darkness.
We have never stopped reaching out to this person. We all keep trying and we leave ourselves available, but this is a very sad outcome… so unlike a fairytale, there is no happy ending. Not yet anyway.
My hope by writing this is to let others with mothers, fathers, daughters, sons, brothers, sisters or any loved ones who suffer with this know that they are not alone in their struggle.
Feelings of hopelessness are something that we cannot help. But from time to time, we see that the light of protection which surrounds us and we feel empowered to continue on the path we have chosen.
On a positive note, you have to remember that all we have is our inner light and the ability to share that light. Even faced with a certain amount of despair, our light still shines. We still have our positive thoughts and the ability to channel those energies to those who are in need. We can heal. We can enlighten. And we can give offerings to the Goddess.
We know that all is how it is suppose to be.
Hope and Blessings to all from my Family to yours.