‘THINK on THESE THINGS’ for October 21st

‘THINK on THESE THINGS’
By Joyce Sequichie Hifler

There is an old Arabian proverb that if you pitch a lucky man in the Nile he will come up with a fish in his mouth. Just to come up would be enough for most of us, but still we do so many things – perhaps half in jest – that we have hopes will throw off the evil spirits and bring good luck to the rescue.

The tokens we carry we’ve carried from childhood, when we were careful never to step on a crack in the walk, or pick up a pin – the silly poems that fascinate children, and sometimes follow them into adulthood when the laughter is gone.

Who are the wise? Those who can rise with the sun letting yesterday go…..and feel within their hearts the gratitude of being alive…..to have the opportunity to glean from their mistakes something that will take them far over that place if ever they pass it again. They know that luck must have a “P” before it to keep them from waiting, to help them turn up something rather than waiting for something to turn up.

And yes, they are lucky who have love to give and the ability to receive it. They have faith in good. And no small amount of peace when they think not how lucky they are, but how blessed!

________________________

Available online! ‘Cherokee Feast of Days’
By Joyce Sequichie Hifler.

Visit her web site to purchase the wonderful books by Joyce as gifts for yourself or for loved ones……and also for those who don’t have access to the Internet: http://www.hifler.com
Click Here to Buy her books at Amazon.com

Elder’s Meditation of the Day
By White Bison, Inc., an American Indian-owned nonprofit organization. Order their many products from their web site: http://www.whitebison.org

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Elder’s Meditation of the Day – October 21

Elder’s Meditation of the Day – October 21

“There is one God looking down on us all. We are children of the one God. God is listening to me. The sun, the darkness, the winds are all listening to what we now say.”

–Geronimo, APACHE

The Old Ones before us knew things. Many of them were so spiritual that the Creator told them things through visions, ceremonies and prayer. The Creator taught them about interconnectedness, balance and respect. The Old Ones experienced these things and told us we are all children of the same God. We all live under the same natural laws. Every human being, every animal, every plant, every insect, every bird, we are all the same in the eyes of God.

Great Mystery, teach me to respect all the things You have created.

October 21 – Daily Feast

October 21 – Daily Feast

Don’t condemn yourself. Who of us have not made mistakes? No one is perfect, but we are too quick to call ourselves stupid. We have condemned ourselves for eating – even though that is what we have to do. It’s just that we eat because it is convenient, we see it, we eat it. If we can get it without having to cook it – all the better. And all the worse – because it doesn’t have in it the nutrients we need and it is gone too quickly and we are not satisfied. Laziness has overtaken our good sense. We let ourselves fall into making it easy on ourselves – and in turn we open the door to making it hard. It is a matter of choices, but not solved by self-criticism.

~ The ground says, “The Great Spirit has placed me here to produce all the grows on me, trees and fruit. ~

YOUNG CHIEF – CAYUSE

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

The Daily Motivator for Oct. 21st – Widen your view

Widen your view

If you’re having trouble finding an answer, it’s probably because you’re  continuing to look where you’ve already looked. If it seems that the problems  have no good solutions, widen your view.

The answers and the opportunities are most certainly out there. In order to  discover them you must let go of some assumptions and open yourself to new  possibilities.

Conditions change, people change, and the whole world can change quickly. If  you continue to see things exactly the way you did yesterday, you’re missing a  whole lot of new opportunities.

It’s great to stay firmly anchored in your long-held, most treasured values.  Yet it’s also vitally important to live and express those values in new,  creative and updated ways.

There are countless ways to enrich your life and your world that you’ve never  even considered. Step out of your routine, step back from your assumptions,  widen your view and see some of those possibilities.

Make the choice to venture beyond what you’re comfortable with, beyond what  you already know and assume. Great new treasures are waiting for you there.

— Ralph Marston

The Daily Motivator

The Daily OM for Oct. 21st – Sustenance for the Soul

Sustenance for the Soul

Taking time for yourself

by Madisyn Taylor

Making time for the activities that contribute to your spiritual growth has little to do with being selfish.

Modern life compels us to rush. Because we feel pressured to make the most of our time each day, the activities that sustain us, rejuvenate us, and help us evolve are often the first to be sacrificed when we are in a hurry or faced with a new obligation. It is importa

nt we remember that there is more to life than achieving success, making money, and even caring for others. Your spiritual needs should occupy an important spot on your list of priorities. Each task you undertake and each relationship you nurture draws from the wellspring of your spiritual vitality. Taking the time to engage in spiritually fulfilling activities replenishes that well and readies you to face another day. Making time for the activities that contribute to your spiritual growth has little to do with being selfish and everything to do with your well-being. Regularly taking the time to focus on your soul’s needs ensures that you are able to nurture yourself, spend time with your thoughts, experience tranquility, and expand your spiritual boundaries.

It is easy to avoid using our free moments for spiritual enrichment. There is always something seemingly more pressing that needs to be done. Many people feel guilty when they use their free time to engage in pursuits where they are focusing on themselves because they feel as if they are neglecting their family or their work. To make time for yourself, it may be necessary to say no to people’s requests or refuse to take on extra responsibilities. Scheduling fifteen or thirty minutes of time each day for your spiritual needs can make you feel tranquil, give you more energy and allows you to feel more in touch with the universe. Writing in a journal, meditating, studying the words of wise women and men, and engaging in other spiritual practices can help you make the most of this time.

Making time to nurture your spirit may require that you sacrifice other, less vital activities. The more time you commit to soul-nurturing activities, the happier and more relaxed you will become. The time you devote to enriching your spirit will rejuvenate you and help you create a more restful life.

The Daily OM

HALLOWS BLESSING

Samhain Comments & Graphics

HALLOWS BLESSING

To those whose feet are stilled
And those who laugh with us no more
To you we say, our love was with you here
And goes with you hence
To that place where you rest and revel.
 
May the dark Lord and sweet Lady
Guide your feet along the rocky paths
To the place where all is fresh and green
And lover, friends and ancestors wait
With open arms to greet you.
Go in peace, and with our blessing
Be rested and return when the Lady deems it fit
With the countless turns of the Great Wheel
We shall miss you
We shall meet you again in the green places of Her domain.

October Lore — the Dumb Supper

October Lore

The Dumb Supper

Samhain is a celebration of death, and as such it is marked by several traditions.  One of these is the Feast of the Dead, sometimes called the Dumb Supper.  This has many variations — from a complete meal shared by the living, with places set at the table for the dead, to the simple leaving of cakes and wine, or any similar combination, by the fireside on Samhain Night.  And this is the most traditional time for communication with the dead.  For this reason, after welcoming them into your Samhain Circle through the Western Gate, the direction of death, you can allow the spirits of the deceased to communicate with you if they so desire.  One method is the wineglass.

Similar to a ouija board but without the undeserved sinister reputation, the wineglass is just that, an inverted wineglass (the champagne type is better than the wine type, as t is less likely to tip).  The glass is surrounded by a circle of letters.  An alphabet in Gothic style drawn on squares of white paper helps to create an appropriate atmosphere.

It must be mentioned here that many occultists turn up their noses at such devices as the ouija board, the pendulum board, and, no doubt, the wineglass, preferring instead personal mediumship, or channeling, as it is currently being called.  But we believe that entities willing to take control of the body or voice of another individual cannot be of the highest calibre.  Nor is every scene that passes before the inner eye psychic or spiritual, or the motivations that created them always spiritually pure.  This is not to say that we do not believe in either channeled information or that which is received psychically.  We most certainly do, but we have seen many instances of self-delusion, which is one of the greatest barriers to true spiritual development.

The wineglass, on the other hand, has several built-in safety devices. It cannot be easily operated alone, so spiritual possession is less likely, and since two or more people are operating it, self-delusion is not so easy.  It is interesting to note, too, that the wineglass brings with it some intrinsic symbolism.  It is a vessel or container for wine, itself a symbol for spiritual awareness, so the wineglass is a container for spiritual knowledge.

The wineglass can be used within the Samhain Circle.  The four quarters of the Circle may be marked with candles in jack-o’-lanterns, and an extra candle, an indigo blue one (the colour symbolizing the higher spiritual planes), should also be lit.  This candle might be anointed with oil and marked with a rune such as û` that describes the travel between the planes.  After a moment of meditation each person present places a fingertip on the upturned base of the wineglass and the traditional “Is anyone here that wishes to give us a message?” is asked. Then as the glass slides from one letter to the next, rapidly spelling out messages, read the words.  You may find it easier to use a tape recorder because it can get confusing.  At this, the most solemn of Pagan festivals, the messages are often personal and profound.

from: “Wheel of the Year” by Pauline Campanelli

October Lore — Pumpkins

October Lore

Pumpkins

The sights and sounds and smells of October bring about in all of us subtle changes, and as our bodies begin to change metabolism, preparing us for shorter Winter days, our consciousness begins to shift from the more actively mental to the more physically receptive state appropriate to the dark half of the year.  As all of these changes are taking place we are busy preparing for the most magical night of the year, Halloween.

The outward manifestations of these internal changes begin to appear around the house.  On the back porch a pumpkin and gourds are the centrepiece of the picnic table, while the grapevine wreath on the door is adorned with a huge black (and orange) bow…. On the front porch pumpkins and colourful squash nestle against the old red butter churn, and sprays of bittersweet are added to the bunch of Indian corn that hangs by the front door.  Bundles of dried cornstalks flank the front steps, and as the month progresses grinning jack-o’-lanterns stare from the windows.  We carefully cut the eyeholes of each jack-o’-lantern so that they appear to be watching anyone that approaches the front porch. As night falls their flaming grins and fiery eyes stare from every window.

The origin of the jack-o’-lantern is obscure, but no doubt started in the New World.  The name used to apply to a natural phenomenon, a luminous glow in the eastern sky after sunset.  It may be that since the sunset in the west symbolized death, this glow in the east symbolized the spiritual survival of death.

Today in Ireland, candles are lit in cottage windows on Samhain night to welcome the spirits of the deceased.  In faraway Japan, on a night equivalent to Halloween, the spirits of the deceased are welcomed home by glowing paper lanterns hung by garden gates.  How the candle got inside the pumpkin may remain forever a mystery, but there can be little doubt that the jack-o’-lantern originated as a beacon light to welcome the spirits who roam freely among us on this night of Halloween.

I found the following in the World Book Encyclopedia:

… Many superstitions and symbols are connected with Halloween.  The Irish have a tale about the origin of jack-o’-lanterns.  They say that a man named Jack was unable to enter heaven because of his miserliness. he could not enter hell because he had played practical jokes on the devil.  So he had to walk the earth with his lantern until Judgment Day.

The Druids, an order of priests in ancient Gaul and Britain, believed that on Halloween, ghosts, spirits, fairies, witches, and elves came out to harm people.  They thought the cat was sacred and believed that cats had once been human beings but were changed as a punishment for evil deeds.  From these Druidic beliefs comes the present-day use of witches, ghosts, and cats in Halloween festivities.

The Druids had an autumn festival called *Samhain*, or *summer’s end*. It was an occasion for feasting on all kinds of food which had been grown during the summer.  The early peoples of Europe also had a festival similar to the Druid holiday.

In the 700’s, the Roman Catholic Church named November 1 as All Saints’ Day.  The old pagan customs and the Christian feast day were combined into the Halloween festival….

 

from: World Book Encyclopedia

October Lore — Apples

October Lore

Apples

This is the time of the apple harvest: winesaps, greenings, macintosh, red and yellow delicious, and the antique varieties of sops of wine, sheep nose and smokehouse.  There are apples to fill fruit bowls for immediate eating, apples that keep well for Winter storage, and apples that make the best pie ever.  The back porch smells of hot applesauce laced with cinnamon, which is canned by the case.

Apples have always been magically important.  The Celts “wassailed” their apple trees to insure a bountifull harvest in the coming year. Traditionally wassail was made of hard cider that was heated with spices and had apples floating on top.  These apples, when heated enough, would burst their skins, and the white flesh would form a froth on top of the wassail.  There is much reason to believe that wassailing was performed at Samhain or Halloween as it was at Yule. Samhain is the time of the apple harvest, and there are many traditions in which apples are very important.  Samhain was the New Year of the Celtic calendar, and probably several traditions got shifted to Yuletide when the calendar was changed.  Wassailing the apple trees, no doubt, was one of these.

Candy apples are a traditional trick or treat gift at Halloween. Another tradition is bobbing for apples, or “dooking,” as it is called in Scotland. (Description of how to dook…)  This game may have developed directly from the apples that floated on the wassail of earlier Halloweens.

Another traditional Halloween game is apple on a string. (Description) This game may have evolved from people playing a similar game while the apples still hung on the tree, and this may have been done in imitation of certain animals.  But it is more likely that these games developed in the spirit of fun and play that is the essence of Pagan celebration.

Apples also have a history of being used for healing (“An apple a day keeps the doctor away”), especially for curing warts.  The most typical method is to slice an apple in half and rub both halves over the wart or affliction to be cured. The put the two halves back together and bury them in the Earth while reciting an enchantment to the effect that as the apple wastes away, so will the wart or other affliction.

When an apple is sliced in half horizontally it reveals hidden within its core a five-pointed star.  When an apple is being cut in half for magical purposes it should be cut this way in order to take full advantage of the secret magical sign.  And of course it should be cut with the boline (magically charged white- handled knife).

The apple harvest can be celebrated on the day that it is completed with a meal that features apples, apple fritters, apple pie, or applesauce.  Select one tree to represent all of the apple trees in the orchard, whether it is the oldest, tallest, or most productive.  Draw and consecrate a Circle around the tree and stand within it facing the tree.  holding a cup of spiced cider or apple wine, anoint the tree by drawing a pentacle with a finger dipped in the cup of liquid. Draw the pentacle at eye level on the tree trunk or just below where all the branches begin.  Recite something such as:

Here’s to thee, Apple tree Flowers at Beltane Fruit at Samhain Apple tree, Blessed be!

Then drink a toast to the tree and pour a libation at its roots, and eat the food of the feast within the Circle.

Spells For All Occasions – Some Spell Ethics

Spells for all occasions

Some Spell Ethics

The central ethic within Wicca is, “An ye harm none, do as ye will.” This applies not just to spells and rituals, but also to everyday life as well, ya know… Besides, with concepts such as Karma or The Threefold Law, I wouldn’t want to do anything harmful for fear of that harm coming back to me, most likely three times as bad.

We as Pagans should set a good example anyhow. For many many, many years, Witches have been cast out as being “evil” people, or we have wrongly taken the blame when something goes wrong. Yes, it is the 1990’s, and one would think by now that such medieval notions would have been forgotten by now. But, that isn’t the way it is. So, I believe that it is up to us to break those myths. It is up to us to say, “HEY WORLD!!! I AM NOT A BAD PERSON!!!!!

Anything causing harm to anyone, including oneself and others, and anything that limits anyone’s free will should be expressly avoided!!!

For example, one of the questions hear get the most is, “Corky, how do I make So-And-So fall madly in love with me?” The answer is simply, “You don’t.” Forcing someone in specific to fall in love with you is limiting their free will. So, how can this be avoided? Well, let’s say that all the person wants is to find a romantic partner and that in their mind, this person is the best choice. Why not do a spell for “A lover who is perfect for me.” and put the energy out into the universe to bring whoever that is into your life.

There are a lot of people out there who say that doing any spell for any self- glorification is bad. I, personally, do not see things this way. Yes, if you are doing spells to make yourself the best person in the world so that you can show off to all your friends and the people in the checkout line at the local supermarket, yes, I do believe that would be true. Every now and then, whenever the need or want arrives, I feel it is OK to splurge a little.

So, if you are planning on doing a spell that may or may not be ethical, how can you figure out weather or not to do the spell? Well, one good idea is to think it over. What is my specific need or want? Are there any other ways to go about getting it? Another good idea, if you know anything about tarot or runes or ??? is to do a reading of some sort to see what the results (or consequences) of doing such a spell would be, and to take the results of the reading into consideration before performing the spell.

The Spells

To Bless a New Relationship

Bake a fresh loaf of bread. Hold it up to the moon and ask the lady to bless the bread as well as the relationship. Break off a piece of the bread for your partner, as well as one for yourself as well. As you share time together, share the bread as well. (Do not cut the bread with a knife or any other cutting tool. Just break off the pieces with your hands. Adding butter or jam might be a good idea to help sweeten things up a bit.)

To Attract a Love

Play a CD or Tape of some romantic music that means something to you. Make sure that the music does not include songs that you associate with another person. It is important to keep specific people out of your mind performing this spell. On a sheet of cardboard, light a candle of your favorite color to represent you. Then, light a red or pink candle to represent whoever your new love may be. Using a red magic marker or crayon, draw a heart around the red candle. Every day for at least a week, relight the candles in the evening, and as soon as you light the candles, move them slightly closer together, so that on the last day, the candles are as close together as possible.

To Heal a Friendship

Shortly after an argument, buy a greeting card which closely expresses what you would like to say to your friend. Rub the greeting card with lavender leaves before you give it to them or mail it to ensure that it is well received.

To Bring Adventure to Your Life

Sprinkle the soles of your shoes with some cinnamon and place some almonds in your pocket before setting out for the day.

To Protect From Nightmares

Fill a small pillowcase with anise seeds, dragon’s blood, and lavender and place the pillowcase under your pillow when you go to sleep. Ask the Celtic Goddess, Mare (MAH-re), the bringer of dreams to only bring you nice dreams.

To Quiet a Noisy House

Powder some dragon’s blood, and in a small bottle, mix it with sugar and salt. Cover tightly and secure it someplace in the home where it will not be seen or disturbed. This will help keep things peaceful and quiet.

For A Peaceful Home

Gather freshly cut parsley and place it in a pan of water. Let it soak for nine minutes, and then sprinkle the water throughout the house while visualizing a calm environment. Peace will be restored.

For Protection and Purification (Bath)

Steep a teaspoon of basil in a cup of boiling water, and strain out the herb. Add it to you bath water for a protective and cleansing influence. It is particularly useful to clean off the feelings left by contact with those who are negative or controlling.

To Attract Customers to a Business or Visitors to a Home

Make a fine powder out of some basil leaves and sprinkle them around the main entrance to the home or place of business. It is believed that only good and friendly people will enter, since it supposedly repels those who intend harm toward the workers of a business or the occupants of a home.

To Lose Your Troubles

Take a handful of earth and gaze into it. Put all your troubles and thoughts of distress into it. State exactly what it is that’s troubling you. When finished, throw the dirt behind you and walk away without turning around to look at it.

To Bring Certain Influences Into Your Life

In a plot of prepared land, or in a medium sized flower pot, sow the seeds of an appropriate plant in the form of a symbol or rune representative of your need. Tend to the plants. After they sprout, draw a circle around them in the earth or soil with your power hand. Stand in quiet contemplation of the growing, living symbol. As it has sprung into existence, so shall your need.

You may want to look in a magical herbal book for the magical influences of certain herbs.

To Help Heal Depression

Light a green candle. As you gaze into the candle for a few moments, try to relax as much as you can and clear all thoughts from your mind. Visualize the Mother Goddess sitting in front of you. Listen for a moment to hear if she has any words of encouragement for you. Visualize her next hugging your and holding you as you rock gently back and forth from side to side easing away your pain and sorrow.

Another good idea, if you suffer from chronic depression is to see a therapist of some sort. There may be another way to deal with your problems, and sometimes just talking about it helps too.

To Enchant A Book

Light a blue and an indigo candle. Invoke a Goddess of Wisdom, and ask for her help to enchant the book. Inscribe the book letting the inscription express the desired wish.

To Help in Times of Financial Difficulties

With clove or cinnamon oil, trace a money symbol or rune on the largest denomination of bill that you have. Put this in your wallet and resist spending it for as long as you can. Every time you look at the bill, visualize the rune to reinforce its power.