One More Thing Then I will Say Good Day, my friends

I mentioned yesterday about raffling off a $50.00 coupon for purchasing anything in our store. I received no answer. I was wondering if you were interested or not.  The cost of the raffle ticket would be $5.00 same as always and it will give you a chance to get your hands on gorgeous merchandise. You won’t have to use it up in one shopping spree, you can make it last as long as you like. I will tell you I am adding some unique merchandise every night to the store. So here is a simple poll, if you would be so kind to answer it.

 

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THINK ON THESE THINGS for January 8th

THINK ON THESE THINGS
By Joyce Sequichie Hifler

Winter has a way of sneaking a storm in on us when we least expect it. A cold blanket settles on the land and we wonder how the birds and wild animals can survive — but they do. So many people have to work outside and they must wear layers of clothes to endure the raw wind.

Weather is unpredictable. Plan something for outside and watch how the sky darkens and the wind blows and the food gets gritty. Sounds a little like life doesn’t it? We plan, we work, we give something what we believe to be the perfect touch, only to have our plans ago awry.

Is there anything we can really depend on not changing? Only one thing. The Greater One is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Try to get around it and nothing works. Depend on it and life takes on a whole new luster.

___________________________________

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

Elder’s Meditation of the Day – January 8

Elder’s Meditation of the Day – January 8

“Native Americans are essentially calling for righteousness. By this they mean a shared ideology developed by all people using their purest and most unselfish minds.”

–Lorraine Canoe/Tom Porter, MOHAWK

The Native way is to first focus on decisions that will be good for the people and then for yourself. Righteousness means “to think right.” Our way is to consider the good of all first. This helps our minds to be unselfish and pure. This it he spiritual way. This can be very hard to do because the world we live in says to take care of yourself first. A man of God cannot be taken advantage of unless it is the will of the Creator. The Creator really controls everything. To have a good future, the people must gather in a circle and pray for the highest good for the people.

Great Mystery, today let me love instead of being loved. Let me be giving instead of receiving. Show me the advantages of having a giving heart.

January 8 – Daily Feast

January 8 – Daily Feast

Every day is a day of worship to the spiritual nature of the Tsi la gi. Born close to the basics, he sees “God in the clouds and hears Him in the wind”, as Alexander Pope wrote. The innate greatness of it buoys him up and helps him walk in a whole new dimension. Reasons to understand come in the simplest of things – the ice crystals touching his face are just another form of the same moisture that forms dew and snowflakes, raindrops, and even steam when under pressure. It is no mystery that the Threefold Being can be together and yet separate. Simplicity – and yet, deep throbbing life that might not be seen with the naked eyes, but is sensed all the same.

~ I think the Great Spirit is looking at all that is said here, and for that reason I am talking the truth. ~

LITTLE RAVEN – ARAPAHO LEADER

“A Cherokee Feast of Days, Volume II” by Joyce Sequichie Hifler

The Daily Motivator for January 8 – Difficult circumstances

Difficult circumstances

Don’t let your situation determine how you are. Let yourself decide and  determine how the situation is.

Your attitude is never forced upon you by outside circumstances. On the  contrary, your attitude is based on the way you choose to respond to whatever  may come your way.

You can have a great day by choosing to be the person who will have a great  day. You can live this day based on a strong, solid inner intention that never  wavers.

What you encounter is important. Yet what’s much more important and  influential is the way you encounter it.

It’s easy to blame difficult circumstances for a difficult day. It’s far  better to live each day based not on what it brings, but rather on the positive  value you choose to give it.

Instead of complaining or bragging about the difficulties, transcend them and  live beyond them. Use the power you surely have, to make the best of even the  most difficult circumstances.

— Ralph Marston

The Daily Motivator

Daily OM for January 8th – Cosmic Support

Cosmic Support
The Universe’s Plan for You

by Madisyn Taylor

Nothing happens in our lives and in the world without purpose.

The path that speeds us toward our dreams can be a challenging and complex one, so it’s easy to get bogged down in confusion and insecurities. We often hesitate at the start of that path, questioning our purpose or our capabilities. Yet we should be moving forward joyously, eager to discover what destiny has in store for us. The universe has plans for us that eclipse anything we have dreamed of thus far. Though we must work diligently to fulfill our potential and to accomplish our individual missions, the universe is aware of both the quests we chose before birth and the goals we have formulated in adulthood. If we accept that it us watching over us and believe that it will facilitate our eventual success, the universe will provide us with the assistance and opportunities that enable us to make significant progress on our journeys of ambition.

Nothing happens without a purpose. Whether we attract success or repel it depends on our willingness to stay open to a wide range of possibilities and to embrace concepts like synchronicity. The universe is always ready to care for our needs, but we must not write off its loving attention as mere circumstance or chance. Likewise, we must endeavor to ensure that our egos do not become a barrier that prevents us from recognizing that even perceived mistakes and strife can be profound lessons that smooth the progress of personal evolution. When we understand that we only need to enthusiastically try our best to realize our objectives, the universe will take care of the details, propelling us forward in its unstoppable current. We may not always immediately understand the significance of certain experiences, but our trust will help us choose wisely at each crossroads.

The universe wants to see you accomplish your goals. No matter how long you’ve dallied or hesitated, it will always be there to put its plan for you in motion at the first sign of your faith. You can make the most of this aid by acquiescing to it rather than fighting it—nurture your dreams but do not attempt to micromanage every detail along the way. The universe will provide you with guidance and, if you heed that guidance, you will find your formerly stressful quest for success will become a journey of great joy.

The Daily OM

What Can Animal Guides Do – And How Do I Work With Them?

WHAT CAN ANIMAL GUIDES DO– AND HOW DO I WORK WITH THEM????

Animal guides can help you in many areas of you life whether they are of the
physical or astral plane.

They can help focus and raise the energy of a ritual or magickal circle.

They can protect you in your dreams, meditations and quests, as well as in the
real world.

They can teach you how to take on their abilities through shapeshifting.

They can help you learn to take yourself less seriously (or more so if needed).

A guide can be your friend, confidant, sister, brother, teacher… They can be
playful, loving, protective and supportive. They will change and grow with you
throughout your life.

You work with spirit guides the same way you work with anyone else, ask them for
help, advice, or support, whatever you need. They will decide if they will do
what you ask.

If it is for the best they will almost always help.

To talk with a guide, do a visualization in which you call to them.

They will come if they choose.

If they do not, try again later or try to work out the problem on your own.

If your guide is a physical one just talk with it. It will help if it chooses.

Talk with your guide.
Ask it to teach you.
Get to know your guide as you would get to know any close friend.
Spend time with it.

You will learn how to work with it as you get to know each other, as you learn
to become a team and understand each others needs.

Just remember to always, always, treat your guide with respect and gratitude for
the help it gives.

Do You Know Your Animal Totem?

DO YOU KNOW YOUR ANIMAL TOTEMS?

The following is from Animal Speak by Ted Andrews

Begin the process of discovering your animal totems by examining the animals you
have been most interested in & the times of your life that interest was piqued.
Use the following questions to help determine which animals are probably totems
to you in your life.

1. Which animal or bird has always fascinated you? (We are drawn to that which
most resonates with us. Those animals which fascinate us have something to teach
us.)

2. When you visit the zoo, which animal do you wish to visit the most or first?
(esp. children)

3. What animal(s) do you see most frequently when you are out in nature? Have
you had encounters with animals in the wild? (The animals we encounter, in their
city environments or in the wild, have significance for us. We can learn from
them, even if only about survival within that environment.)

4. Of all the animals in the world, which are you most interested in now?  (Our
interests in animals change. Yes, we usually have one or two that are lifetime,
power animals, but others become prominent when there is something importance or
specific to teach us.)

5. What animal most frightens you? (That which we fear the most is often
something we must learn to come to terms with. When we do that, it then becomes
a power. Some shamans believe that fears will take the shape of  animals, and
only when we confront them without fear do their powers/medicine work for us
instead of against us. Such an animal become a shadow totem.)

6. Have you ever been bitten or attacked by an animal? (Historically, if a
shaman survived an attack, it was believed that the animal was the shaman’s
spirit totem and the attack was the totem’s way of testing the shaman’s ability
to handle the power.)

7. Do you have dreams with animals in them or are there animal dreams you have
never forgotten? (This is especially important if the dreams are recurring or if
at least the animal image in the dream is a recurring one. Children often dream
of animals, & attention should be given to these animals. They will often
reflect specific spirit totems of the child.)

ANIMAL GUIDES

ANIMAL GUIDES

Do I Have an Animal Guide? Some believe that each person has one and possibly
more (one guide being the most commonly held belief), personal animal guides
that they can rely on. Most also believe that they can access other animal
guides for help in areas where their personal guide(s) are not as strong.
However there are also some who believe that anyone can access guides for help,
but each person does not have a specific one. Believe whatever feels right to
you. Before you decide that this is a wonderful idea and that you should have
365 personal animal guides, one for each and every day of the year, and want to
run out and meet them all, think about this. I was once told that those who meet
many personal animal guides in their life are not to be envied for they are the
ones who need the most protection and guidance. However that does not mean that
you cannot call on different guides for help when you need the specific type of
help they can offer you. It also does not mean you can can’t have more than one
personal guide. I just wanted to throw in a word of warning; too much candy can
make you sick after all. So if you suddenly find a flock of animal guides at
your side at all times, look at what you are doing and where you are going in
your life. Perhaps you have some decisions to make.

How Do I Meet My Animal Guide?

Patience, patience, patience… Animal guides are not owned by anyone, even if
some might be called pets. It is their choice whether or not to make themselves
known to you at any particular time. You may ask nicely, but you can never force
a meeting. Most often your guide will reveal itself in its own time. Just
because they do not appear the first time you try to contact them doesn’t mean
you should give up. Keep trying every so often and when they feel the time is
right they will show themselves. There are three ways you can meet your power
animal or discover which animal medicine is right for you. First, you could just
wait until the guide decides that it is time for it to show itself. Second, you
could write and perform a ritual to call and ask for the assistance of the
animal that would best assist you in your present magical workings or be of help
in resolving a conflict in your life or simply ask that a guide make itself
known to you.  Finally you could opt for the method of entering a meditative
state (for example ashamanic trance, astral travel or lucid dreaming) and meet
the animal in the spirit world. When the ritual technique is used, you will most
likely see the animal in its natural form or it may appear in your life through
seeming coincidences sometime after the ritual. There may be a synchronistic
conversation where the topic is of the animal, or you find a book about the
animal, images of it keep popping up, etc. When you catch that first glimpse of
that particular medicine, you will know it in your heart. If you meet the animal
in the meditative astral state, converse with it and ask its help. Anything is
possible in the astral, so ask questions and get to know your new partner. If
you have seen the animal after a ritual, plan sometime to go into the meditative
state to cement your relationship, get to know the animal and the wisdom it
represents. It is important to remember that in many cases, we are chosen and
not the one making the choices when it comes to the alliance with an animal
spirit. We may wish to seek the wisdom of a particular guide but others will
show up instead. Remember to be receptive to any or all who appear because they
all have important lessons or wisdom to impart. It is also possible that before
we can progress to our next level of understanding, we must first resolve or
overcome some underlying issues that we may not be fully aware of or are denying
within ourselves. Once you have met and began your relationship with an animal
spirit, what do you do with it? Power animals are great advice givers, often
representing aspects of our higher selves that we haven’t been paying close
enough attention to.  In a meditative state you can ask for their assistance on
problems that have been nagging at you. At times, it is also necessary to seek
the assistance of more than one power animal at the same time to maintain
balance, as is the case between Badger and Deer.

How to Discover Your Guide:

One way of starting to discover your animal guides by examining the animals you
have been most interested in and the times of your life that interest was
piqued. Also examine the animals that have appeared in your dreams or in your
everyday life, especially the ones that have appeared over and over and at odd
times. The following questions can help you determine which animals might be
guides in your life. Has a specific creature or specific creatures, be it
animal, bird, reptile, Amphibian, insect or mythological beast, always
fascinated you? We are drawn to that which most resonates with us. Those
animals, which fascinate us or the ones that we fear the most, have something to
teach us. Animal guides are not always those that we have the most similarities
with. Often they are in our lives to help us learn what we are lacking. When you
visit the zoo, which animal do you wish to visit first? This is especially true
with children and this question is easy for them to answer since they are often
more receptive than teens or adults. What animal or animals do you see most
frequently when you are out in nature? The animals we encounter in their city or
wild environments have significance for us. We can learn from them about
survival within their environment and often much more. Of all the creatures,
which are you most interested in now? Our interests in animals change. Yes, we
usually have one or two that are lifetime power animals, but others become
prominent in our lives when there is something of importance to learn from them.
Do any animals frighten you? That which we fear is often something we must learn
to come to terms with. When we do that, the fears then become power. Some
Shamans believe that fears will take the shape of animals, and only when we
confront them without fear do their powers/medicine work for us instead of
against us. Such an animal then becomes a shadow totem. Have you ever been
attacked or badly wounded by an animal? Historically, if a Shaman survived
an attack, it was believed that the animal was the Shaman’s spirit totem and the
attack was the totem’s way of testing the Shaman’s ability to understand and
handle its power. Do you have dreams with animals in them or are there animal
dreams you have never forgotten? This is especially important if the dreams are
recurring or if a specific animal image keeps popping up in your dreams.
Children often dream of animals and attention should be given to these animals.
They will often reflect specific animal guides of the child or areas of weakness
where the parents can help in their child’s growth.

Meet Your Spirit Guides

Before retiring, or going to bed, spend a few minutes in bed relaxing. Just
focus on being relaxed. Be relaxed…
While relaxed, imagine a Veil in front of your eyes. A curtain, or a wall.
Imagine the Veil, or the wall, as being void, black. Accept the Veil, or the
wall. Do not be threatened by the Veil, because you are relaxed, and because
you know the Veil is an illusion, and serves purpose. You are still relaxed.
Then, you visualize the Veil (or wall) slowly lifting. You see the Veil lifting,
and you see stars, you see lights. You know you can see things you haven’t seen
before. You are still relaxed. When you are ready, you ask for Spirit to join
you. You ask Spirit to touch you, and to embrace you, because you are ready to
embrace Spirit. You know that Spirit is Divine Love, you know you are safe, you
know you are loved. You know you are ready to meet Spirit. Hold your hands out.
Let your fingertips feel the touch of Spirit. Know that when you are ready, you
can ask Spirit to embrace your arms; ask for Spirit to give you a huge hug. You
will feel it. Accept the love that is given to you, and know that you have
earned it, that the love is yours. You may feel many things. Electricity, and an
urge to cry, is what I felt, and great joy. There are many methods regarding
meeting your spirit guides. I met my guides in delayed stages. I had two human
guides and three critter guides. This is not “common” but is also not unheard-
of. What is common is for people to have two human guides. For those who study
critter-paths, I believe that they also have two human guides, but that they are
working more consciously with critter-wisdom, and therefore it is likely that
they have “critter-medicine”, and may actually have critter guides, as I do.
Names? Gender? These are generally the first two issues we would like to
distinguish within our guides. What I would recommend, as a matter of deduction,
is that you ask your inner voice, if your entity is Male or Female. You WILL
receive a definite impression. Lesson number one – learn to trust yourself. (I
like to ask the gender question first, as it’s an easy one-two, this or that
approach, and helps to distinguish our own emotional responses.) When it comes
to names, let your mind be open to receive impressions. When I first met Elmo,
my bear, I had a hard time believing that was his name, because I am a “serious”
person, I associated “Elmo” as being playful, and therefore antithetical to what
I thought his name should be. (Yet, I’ve learned a lot from Elmo, including “not
being so uptight” I also learned more about not judging a person – or entity –
by their name.) When I first met Garulf, as a spirit, I thought he had a
fascinating name. Weird name, dynamic personality. This was the label I hanged
on him. How was I to know Garulf was a fairly common, respectable name several
hundreds of years ago, in Denmark? How was I to know Garulf was actually a Soul
name, befitting him perfectly as a spirit, and as a person? So, in other words,
whatever name you get in meditation, or whatever, really is their name?
Sometimes, the names of your spirits will help you bust up your own
preconceptions of what names mean – or what roles people should play in your
lives. What it all really comes down to is trusting your impressions. If you can
do that (we salute you!), but more, you are already on a healthy journey of
rediscovery. Your spirits will help you find the way.

Several Different Account of Animals In Witchcraft

ANIMALS IN WITCHCRAFT

ANIMALS IN WITCHCRAFT-ANIMALS ON TRIAL

Witches and Cats

Locust on Trial

The Animals of Salem

The Animals of Finnish Witchtrials

The Trials of Familiars

Familiars of the Chelmesford witches
——————————————————————————–
——————————————————————————–
WITCHES AND CATS

“The rise of Christianity in Europe heralded a fundamental shift in attitudes to
cats.  During the Middle Ages, the cat’s links with the ancient, pagan cult of
the mother goddess inspired a wave of persecution that lasted several hundred
years.  Branded as agents of the Devil, and the chosen companions of witches and
necromancers, cats, especially black ones, were enthusiastically tortured and
executed during Christian festivals all over Europe.  It was also believed that
witches disguised themselves as cats as a means of traveling around incognito,
so anyone encountering a stray cat at night felt obliged to try and kill or maim
the animal.  By teaching people to associate cats with the Devil and bad luck,
it appears that the Church provided the underprivileged and superstitious masses
with a sort of universal scapegoat, something to blame for all of the many
hardships and misfortunes of life.  Fortunately for cats, such attitudes began
to disappear gradually during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries with the
dawn of the so-called Age of Enlightenment.  However, not until the middle of
the nineteenth century did cats eventually begin to regain the popularity they
once enjoyed in Ancient Egypt.”

********************************************************************

LOCUST ON TRIAL

The discussion so far has put me in mind of a terrific book I once read on
European animal trials, which were conducted up until I think the 17th century.
One example especially pertinent to the topic at hand:  if a plague of
caterpillars or locusts or whatever infested an area, the local legal community
would put the swarm on trial.  A locust would be captured and taken to the
courthouse.  It would become the “defendant” , and would in effect stand-in for
the whole swarm.  The trial would be conducted with all pomp and circumstance,
with a lawyer appointed to represent the swarm and etc. There were a number of
standard defensive strategies, and sometimes the swarm was even judged innocent
if their lawyer was especially able.  If judged guilty, however, the locusts
were ordered to get out of town.  If the infestation abated, the trial was given
credit.  If the infestation continued, this does not appear to have been seen as
an argument against conducting animal trials in the future.  I trust the
resemblance to the raindance ceremony is fairly clear here.

The author of the book (I cannot recall the title or author; I remember that it
was published in the early 1900s and the cover shows a reproduction of an old
print, portraying the public execution of a pig by hanging) argues that such
trials are an attempt by the human community to intervene in the natural order,
to exert its will over the world.  I think this is a pretty insightful comment.

“Exerting human will over the world” could serve as a definition of the goal
of science.  Bacon sometimes describes science as the human “conquest” of
nature, and certainly many modern critiques of science (feminist, for example)
have taken this to be the self-defined goal of scientific inquiry.  I’m not
arguing for the ultimate truth of this particular position, but on the other
hand if you look at things along these lines than certain aspects of religious
and scientific thought seem to be closely related, at least in their purpose.
Bacon’s studies of heat are supposed to yield a (universal) process for making
heat, the shaman leading a raindance is trying to make it rain, the animal trial
is an attempt to bring the plague to an end etc.

Note that the various rituals used for bringing about these interventions don’t
have to work very well in each case for the ritual to be accepted within the
community.   The community may simply accept that human powers are limited in
what they can accomplish.  I believe that within alchemical studies this was a
common view; even if all the processes were carried out correctly, you might
still not create gold from lead or whatever, and in fact usually would not.
Note also that the ritual might have multiple functions within the community.
The rain-dance both be used for bringing rain and bringing about group
solidarity.  These are not mutually exclusive.  Again, I have read something
similar with respect to alchemical procedures; that the alchemist “purifying”
metals with his various tools is also going through a process of spiritual
purification.  And certainly the animal trial, even if it does not drive out the
infestation, makes the community feel better.  The community is “doing
something” about its situation, even if its acts are ineffective.

I also like the animal trial example because it muddies the waters here in
interesting ways.  The conversation to date has concerned itself with
comparing/contrasting religious/scientific thought.  Yet here we see legal
institutions using their procedures in a way that suggests a religious ritual.
Conversations on the distinctions/similarities between legal and religious
thought, and legal and scientific thought, would also be good to have.

************************************************************
THE ANIMALS OF SALEM

Salem Story:  Reading the Witch Trials of 1692  by Bernard Rosenthal Cambridge
University Press 1993

p.18  John Hughes, while testifying about seeing beast transform into Sarah
Good, Sarah Osborne, and Tituba, also mentions that on March 2 “a great white
dog followed him and then disappeared, and then that night in bed he saw a great
light and a cat at the foot of his bed.”  (from Narratives of the WC Cases 1648-
1706 ed. G. LO. Burr)

p.21  Tituba’s testimony included many animals…black dog/hog/man/yellow bird
told her to serve him; yellow bird was accompanying Sarah Good (who had already
given accusers legitimacy); also said she saw a cat with Good on other occasions

p.22  T. saw 2 cats, black and red.  “What did the cats do?  Tituba did not
know.  Had the cats hurt or threatened her?  They had scratched her. What had
they wanted of her?  They had wanted her to hurt the children. They had forced
her to pinch the children.  Did the cats suck Tituba? No, she would not let
them.”

p.82  Bridget Bishop (owner of shuffle-board and cider teenage hangout) was
testified against by Wonn, slave of John Ingerson.  He “told a story of
frightened horses, the vanishing shape of B.B. (at the time B. Oliver), the
appearance of an unknown cat, and mysterious pinchings and pain.”

p.124  Martha Carrier:  7 yr. old daughter Sarah was induced to confess that “a
cat, identifying itself as M. C., had carried Sarah along to afflict people when
her mother was in prison.”

**********************************************************

THE ANIMALS OF FINNISH WITCHTRIALS

I have studied over 1200 finish witch trials 1520-1700 (with PD Marko Nenonen)
and there is a certain role of animals.  “Para”  was a small “cat-like” animal,
used  to  steal  milk  and a butter called cow  lucky especially in swedish
speaking west coast in Finland.  The “Para” was not found out by judges, but it
had a long folk tradition.  There are many examples  where  a  neighboug  was
accusing  another by stealing “butter lucky” with “para”.

“Para” is just the same “trollcat”  as it  was in  Sweden and Norway. You can
find  “Para”  in court  protocolls in  western part (Swedish speaking part) in
Finland (1520-1600),  but not  in finnish speaking parts on  the  country.   So
“Para” can’t  be shamanistic (Lappland) phenomenom, but it surely is known all
parts of Scandinavia.

As time goes, You could  find “Para”  in finnish  speaking areas too, but in in
1500-1700.   So  we have  learned it  from swedish speaking people.

But, as we are dealing with animals, you can find  other animals than “trollcat”
too.  We have cases with “trolldog” which I mean the Devil with a shape of a
dog.  Some of our accused had meet the devil with a shape of a dog (and a coat).

We have at least one case with a “metapmorphose”, where people have been accused of being  “werewolves”. In Estonia the tradition of those being wolves in night time was strong.   There  were many cases like that.

I think, the idea of “trollcats” is not shamanistic, it is surely
Scandinavian!

There is quite a lot of articles abou “Para” (Trollcat)  but only few of them
would be available in english.

But, there is one point we have to keep in mind.  People were ACCUSED of having  “Para” and  they were  CONVICTED to  using witchcraft, but they were never CONVICTED TO HAVING  PARA!   The matter  of trial was not, is there really animal shaped “butter stealing” para, but it was a question of practicing
witchcraft or superstition!

In Scandinavia  we  have  very old  “lore”, written  by one historian about
1200-1300, were a man was killed by “Mara”  (bad dream animal?) because he had not kept his promise to his Finnish wife.

Another instance of using “para”, other than trying have luck in stealing
butter,  was a “Finnish way” to use a bear as a helper for  killing someone’s
cattle.  People believed that some (almost always a man) people had  ability to
force bears to kill enemy’s horse or cattle.  But I  have no  idea, if the
bear wanted some price of it’s doings (nourishment or protection).

Even in the  oldest witch  trials (before  people had  any idea about satanistic
pact with devil) witches were believed to use some animals as a helper of their
maleficium.  So, this belief must be older than the christian theory of pact.

The bear  cases  seems  to  be  common way  to do  harm among finnish speaking
people.  In some rare cases the helper was a wolf. In some cases (1670s) the
helper was a dog, but it seems that the dog was not really an animal, but it was
a Devil with a shape of a dog.

Some ladies used cows (or even  a pig)  to ride  to “Bl=E5kulla” (the Sabbath),
but  those  animals   were  usually   “borrowed”  for  some neighbour and they
were not acting like a helper –  they were forced to do so.

Lapplanders who  had  long shaman  traditions used  to use “animal spirit
helpers” to do things, but they were not accused of forcing real animals to do
any harm, as far as I know.

There is  one  big  difference  between  using  a “Para”  and a bear. “Para” was
supernatural  familiar,  but  bears  were  really  acting animals whom could be
seen.  Damage made by para was a loss of butter or milk lucky, but a damage made by bear was real.   Anyone could see the damage.

In some  cases  there  was  so  called  “tonttu”  (tomptegubben or rgubbe in
swedish).  They were not used as helpers, but You should give them  some
presents  for  getting rid  of harms  they could do. People believed,  that
“tonttu” was  living in  particular place and people living in same area were
disturbing the tonttu.  So You had to do something  to  keep tonttu  in good
mood.   Tonttu was spiritual, because no one had never catch one.   Tonttu  was
not  an animal, but small human kind of creature.

Then there was “Nekki” or “Nacken”.   It  was a  creature living in lakes and
killing people by taking them under the water.  Nekki was not a real animal and
it did not acted like a helper for  anyone – it did what  it wanted  to do.

First little  more  about “para”.   The  belief of  “para” helping to steal cows
must be very old, because in one finnish church there is a painting of para.
The painting is older than the belief that a Witch have a pact with the devil,
the devil then  giving a  “spiritum” to a helper for  the  witch (This  belief
was  not known  in Finland until 1660s.)

Secondly, I think too, that a  witch-hare (para)is  common in Sweden. Probably
Finnish  speaking  people  have  borrowed  in  from  Sweden, because there are
no witch-hares in our oldest mythology as  far as I know.  The witch-hare (para)
was mentioned  in trials  some times in the Swedish speaking area of Finland
(west coast), but not in Finnish speaking Karelia, suggesting it is borrowed.

Thirdly, I have  to check  my papers  to find  out is  there any “pet
connection” in  finnish witch  trials, but  without doing  so I can’t remember
any cases where pet animals had  some part  of being helpers and neither did PhD Marko Nenonen as we discussed today.

But I could find at least one case where a man was killed  by his own dog.  The
victim,  Antti Yrjonpoika  Paivikainen, was  a customer of famous witch  Antti
Lieroinen  who did  all kinds  of maleficium for salary.  After their contact
Paivikainen was found dead and the cause for that was  his own  dog.   So
Lieroinen  was thought  to cause the death by using victim’s own dog to  kill
him.   This  was not proved, but Lieroinen was executed for  other witchcraft
he had  done.  This happend in 1643.

Fourthly, 27.3.1641 witch Erkki Juhonpoika  Puujumala (“Treegod”) was convicted in Turku Supreme Court.  He was sentenced to death for many reasons –  for killing  people with  witchcraft etc.   He  has had an arguement with other
people and he had said that he  was going change those people into wolves with
his maleficium.  This was not proved to happen, but it was one prosecution among many.   By  the way, Treegod said that he was 120 years old.

Fifthly, we have some cases where a witch has used a snake to do some crime.
One witch  argued with  his wife  and then  separated.  Later that ex-wife get
pregnant from a snake, and later gave  birth to some snakes.  In one another
case the  snake had  gone inside  of a woman (and they used a lappish healer to
try to get it out).

Snakes had also a  strong part  of shamanism,  but I  don’t know what really was
the function of shamans snake-shape belongings(??instruments??).  Finnish
folkloristics  seem to believe that the snake was for the shamans protection.

We had few cases where a snake’s head  was used  by magical meanings.

Sixthly, in  1732  court  was  dealing  with  a   case,  where  Lauri
Heikinpoika Tervo accused his neighbor “of  sending a  bird with fire on its
head (nose)” to burn his house, which  burned.   Due to losses of protocols, we
don’t know how  the case  was handled,  but I’m sure the court did not  find
neighbor  guilty.   Birds have  been known to used to carry fire in saami
tradition (says  finnish folklorist Aune Nystrom).

Seventhly, we have found one case  where a  woman gave  birth to some frogs, and one case where a frog was put in  a box  and buried inside of a church.  The box was just like those boxes they  used with human bodies.

Eigth, we have a case where they used a  fish to  heal sick person. The idea was
that the “Grande mal” (falling sickness)  would be moved from people to fish.
So they did it, but  unfortunately one innocent person touched  the fish  and
got  himself sick.   And  of course the sickness was grande mal.

Ninth, I have a strong feeling, that finnish courts  did not tried to found  out
if  the  accused had  animal helper  or not.   The law mentioned nothing about
animal imps or  spirituals, so  they were not needed as  evidence.    Maleficium
was  maleficium  and  it could be proofed without any animal helpers or spirits.

10th According  the  old folk  tradition the  bear will  not harm the cattle if
one takes a blind puppy dog and  buries it  with some rites in the land on area,
where the bear  lives.   But I  have no evidence that this has ever been done.

11th In Finland was  believed, that  milking others  cow, would steal not only
the  milk but  the further  milk lucky  too.   I think this believe is common in
whole Scandinavia.

12th A bear  could be  sent to harm neighbour’s cattle.  But at least in one
case (1746)  shows, that it could also to sent back to harm the original witch.

13th  I have no reason to believe that the animal (exept  the bear or wolf
sended  to  do  harm) were  real ones.   If  it was  so that the helpers were
real pets, why they did not execute the pets too?

I think that the judges  has sent  the animals  to death  as they did with cases
where humans  had sexual  intercourse with  animal.  They executed both!  One
reason to not to do so could be,  that the animal was not “guilty” for anything
because it  could not  differ the right and the wrong from each other.  But so
did the raped animal neither.

14th The worms.  At least in one case the witch used worms to destroy a pig.  He
used some magical technique and  the victims  pig get “full of worms”  as  they
found  out when  they slaughtered  the sick pig. Worms could be sent to a human
being too.

15th The lycanthropy.  Werewolves had no part of  finnish trials, but they had
one in Estonia.  Why?  The Finnish people  have common roots with Estonian
people and  our languages  are still  guite similar. Our oldest  pre-christian
religion  is  common,  and   there  is  no werewolves in  that  tradition,  as
far  as I  know.   So, where the estonians got  the  idea about  werewolves?   I
think  that they have adopted it  from  germans.    Estonia  has  been  under
strong german influence, but Finland hasn’t.   So, I  believe, that  they must
have copied the idea from German “Werewolffe”.

According Maia Madar (Estonia I:  Werewolves and  poisoners, in Early Modern
European  Witchcraft  ed.     Bengt   Ankarloo  and  Gustav Henningsen,
Clarendon Press, Oxford 1990).

“Belief in werewolves was widespread.  At eighteen trials, eighteen women  and
thirteen men  were accused  of causing damage while werewolves.  At Meremoisa  1623, the  defendant Ann testified that she  had been  a werewolf  for four  years, and  had killed a horse as well as some smaller animals.  She had later hidden the wolf skin under a stone in the fields.”  (page 270)

Maia Madar tells other examples, too.  And in one  case where 18-year old Hans
had  confessed  that he  had hunted  as a  werewolf for two years, “when asked
by the judges if his body  took part  in the hunt, or if only his soul was
transmuted, Hans confirmed that  he had found a dog’s teeth-marks on  his own
leg, which  he had  received while a werewolf.  Further  asked wether  he felt
himself to  be a  man or a beast while transmuted, he told  that he  felt
himself  to be beast.” (page 271)

Madar writes:  “It was acknowledged  that people  could be transmuted not only
into werewolves, but also into bears.”

So as a lawyer I  must ask  why they  were confessing  that they were hunting as
werewolves  in  Estonia.    The  answer  must be torture. Torture was  widely
used in  Estonia ecen  it was  under the Swedish jurisdiction, where torture was
forbidden.

16th The devil in a shape of a dog.  All over the  Scandinavia we had trials
where the accused said, that the devil they’ve met had a shape of a  dog.   Why
the  dog?   Danish witchhistorian  Jens Christian V. Johanssen writes (in book
mentioned above), that  the popular culture (peoples believes) borrowed ideas
for wall-paintings in the church.

“In Ejsing church, Christ is tempted in the desert by the  devil – in the shape
of a  ferocious-looking dog!   Popular  imagination was so vivid that  on  given
occasions  the devil  came to  take his form”. (Johansen:  Denmark:  The
Sociology of Accusations in Early Modern European Witchcraft..  page 363-364).

Well, so and so.  But surely the popular culture appointed ideas from elite’s
culture.

17th The shamanism.  I have not specialised about  shamanism, so I’ll now follow  the  ideas  that  finnish  shamanism expert Anna-Leena Siikala writes  in   her  book   “Suomalainen  samanismi”  (Finnis Shamanism), Hameenlinna 1992.

Siikala writes about moving the  demon from  someone to  another.  In finnish
folklore it is usuall to remove a disease from  patient to an animal or  some
idol, like  wooden puppet.   This  is common between Middle- and  East-Siperia
shaman  too.   She remind,  that even Jesus removed demon from a man to some
pigs.  (page 187)

There is  information  about  this kind  of “removing”  in German and Estonia
too.  In Finland  this was  usually done  by soothsaying, but this was not
common in Middle-Europe or Scandinavia.

Siikala guesses, that this habit has  very old  shamanistic roots and that the
churhes middle-age tradition  has forced  this old religion. (pages 188-189)

In these cases animals are  shamans helpers  and they  carry the evil demon
away.    Shamans  (spiritual)  animal  helpers  are also spyes, Shaman can  send
them  far  away  to  collect  information  what  is happening.  Helpres  also
carry  the  information  from  here to the “heaven”.  “Because  shamans helper
animal do  not only  to take the disease to themselves,  but carry  it to
“heaven” (or  “to the other side” as shamans say), they are=20  not usuall
(real) animals” (page 191).

Siikkala says,  that middle  age church  adopted these  old ideas and they used
the idea to their rituals (to carry out demons).

Shamans used to call their helpers for instance by singing (and using the drum).
In my opinion it is surely understandable that shaman was all the  time
demonstrating  to  the  audience,  that  he  has  very important helpers.

The shaman uses his  helpers to  fight agains  other shamans helpers, too.  So
when shaman is healing a patent,  he first  find’s out where the disease has
become, and then force it to go back.  If the disease is caused by demon, you
have to fight against demon.  If it is caused by other shaman with his helpers,
so the helpers must fight together. (as Carlo Ginzburg’s “benandati” did).

The idea about shamans fighting together is old  and it  is common in Northern-
Asia, too.  In Siperia tradition the  fighning shamans could take a shape of
animals.

But I could not find any  reason to  believe that  the helper animals were real
animals in Siikalas book either.

According to Joan’s Witch Pages  they executed  a dog  in Salem Witch trials.
This is something I had  not pointed  out earlier.   If they really executed the
dog, so I’ll have to reuse my argument:  why they did not executed other
suspected “pets” too  (if the  “pet theory” is right)?

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THE TRIALS OF FAMILIARS

One reason why they may not have executed pets is  because the  law assumed
that these creatures were supernatural beings  – by  definition.  If the animals
had  been  captured,  brought to  court, examined by authorities, etc.,  it
would  have  been difficult  to avoid the conclusion that the witch’s cat or dog
was, in fact, no different from any other cat  or dog.  In addition,  according
to folklore, these animals could not be killed by ordinary  means because they
were spirits. We have found one account, for example, of a suspected familiar (a
poodle dog called Boye, belonging to Prince Rupert) being killed by a silver
bullet fired by  a ‘soldier skilled in necromancy’  at  the battle  of Marston
Moor in  1642.  Also, perhaps it was assumed that the familiars would perish as
soon as the witch  was  executed,  since they  were assumed  to depend on
her/him for  nourishment (coincidently, of course, the animals probably didn’t
survive  for  long  once their owners were incarcerated and executed).  However,
I  agree with  you that the fate of these animals is somewhat mysterious.  My
guess would be that the  witch’s  neighbours  dealt  with  them swiftly and
discretely, but I have no evidence either way. I wasn’t aware of the Salem dog
execution but will now look into this. In the bestiality trials, the animals
were not generally executed as criminals.  Rather they seem to have been
regarded as polluted creatures which might have a corrupting influence on public morality if allowed to remain alive. Thus, there was a particular incentive to identify these (real) animals and kill them.

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