‘THINK on THESE THINGS’ for January 22nd

‘THINK on THESE THINGS’
By Joyce Sequichie Hifler

The destructive hand is one that never finds a friendly hand to shake. Its finger is always pointed at someone’s face in a threat. The destructive hand is forever lifted against anyone who differs, ready to strike in disagreement, always lifted for attention to let them tell the wrong someone has done.

The destructive hand tries desperately to hold another’s good back….ready to sign a complaint….forever in a gesture of disdain.

But pity the destructive hand. It will never know the tenderness of love nor find the clasp of friendship. It will never feel the sun warm on its palm while it lifts someone….or guide another to happier things….or wave or cheer or praise and give thanks.

The destructive hand is the negative approach to all of life. It can never do anything but discourage and frighten. The positive approach to life is found in every gesture of the productive hand; it builds unbreakable structure, unbroken peace, and joy to soothe the most savage heart.

________________________________

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 – January 22

Elder’s Meditation of the Day – January 22

“The first factor in the revolution of consciousness is the mystic death of the ego – the death of negative thinking, negative personalities. We must purify the soul of the inner enemies. Every time a defect manifests- envy, gluttony, anger, lust, whatever-that impulse to the heart. Ask, `Do I really need to invoke this?’ And then honor the heart.”

–Willaru Huayta, QUECHAU NATION, PERU

Our egos have character defects. These character defects we sometimes act out and they invariably bring results to our lives that we might not want. If we continue to use these character defects, we will continue to have undesirable results in our lives. How do we change ourselves or get rid of a character defect We can go to the heart-ask a question, make a decision-then honor the heart. For example, say I get angry today. I would go to the heart and ask, would I rather be right or would I rather be happy? How we answer this question can have an enormous impact on how our day goes. Once we decide the answer to this question, we need to honor the heart by saying, “Thank you for the power of changing my thoughts. I choose to be happy and to experience peace of mind.”

Great Spirit, today, let me teach only love and learn only love.

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January 22 – Daily Feast

January 22 – Daily Feast

Pushmataha, Chief of the Choctaws, understood our weaknesses as well as our strengths. He knew how willing we are to give in to abuse for fear of having no peace at all. Peace at any price is very familiar to the American Indian. And we know how a little success can do away with common sense – how it can remove the stops that keep us on the true path. A stable attitude can offset the extremes where we sometimes find ourselves. Good peace – to hi dv – is an inside job, a place where we cultivate the development of our own spirits before we look to our surroundings for strength and sustenance. The heart and soul that loves peace and wants others to be peaceful will never miss the mark of excellence.

~ Never be elevated above measure by success….nor delighted with the sweets of peace to suffer insults. ~

PUSHMATAHA

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

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The Daily Motivator for Jan. 22nd – Always give the best

Always give the best

In order to experience the best life has to offer, you must give the best of  who you are. There is no other way.

True fulfillment does not ever come from possessions, relationships or  experiences alone. Fulfillment comes from what you do to put real substance and  meaning into what you have.

The success you desire in life does not depend on the image you’re able to  project. Success is a result of the authenticity with which you live your life  in every moment.

If you attempt to cheat life, the best you can hope to get are mere tokens of  success. You deserve much more than that.

So go ahead and put in the effort and commitment necessary to make each day  truly meaningful. Do the work to be honest, creative, productive and generous in  your own unique way.

Give your best to life every chance you get. And what you’ll get in return is  a life that’s rich and full and increasingly satisfying.

— Ralph Marston

The Daily Motivator

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The Daily OM For Jan. 22nd – The Time of Your Life

The Time of Your Life
Learning to Slow Down

by Madisyn Taylor

When we rush through our days and lives, we fail to notice the simple beauty of living.

Throughout our lives, we are taught to value speed and getting things done quickly. We learn that doing is more valuable than merely being, and that making the most of life is a matter of forging ahead at a hurried pace. Yet as we lurch forward in search of some elusive sense of fulfillment, w

e find ourselves feeling increasingly harried and disconnected. More importantly, we fail to notice the simple beauty of living. When we learn to slow down, we rediscover the significance of seemingly inconsequential aspects of life. Mealtimes become meditative celebrations of nourishment. A job well-done becomes a source of profound pleasure, no matter what the nature of our labors. In essence, we give ourselves the gift of time—time to indulge our curiosity, to enjoy the moment, to appreciate worldly wonders, to sit and think, to connect with others, and to explore our inner landscapes more fully.

A life savored slowly need not be passive, inefficient, or slothful. Conducting ourselves at a slower pace enables us to be selective in how we spend our time and to fully appreciate each passing moment. Slowness can even be a boon in situations that seem to demand haste. When we pace ourselves for even a few moments as we address urgent matters, we can center ourselves before moving ahead with our plans. Embracing simplicity allows us to gradually purge from our lives those commitments and activities that do not benefit us in some way. The extra time we consequently gain can seem like vast, empty stretches of wasted potential. But as we learn to slow down, we soon realize that eliminating unnecessary rapidity from our experiences allows us to fill that time in a constructive, fulfilling, and agreeable way. We can relish our morning rituals, linger over quality time with loved ones, immerse ourselves wholeheartedly in our work, and take advantage of opportunities to nurture ourselves every single day.

You may find it challenging to avoid giving in to the temptation to rush, particularly if you have acclimated to a world of split-second communication, cell phones, email and overflowing agendas. Yet the sense of continuous accomplishment you lose when you slow down will quickly be replaced by feelings of magnificent contentment. Your relaxed tempo will open your mind and heart to deeper levels of awareness that help you discover the true glory of being alive.

The Daily OM

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WHEN MAGIC DOESN’T WORK

WHEN MAGIC DOESN’T WORK
by Van Ault

Every magician has occasions in which the magic he is directing does not seem to
work. The desired result, whether internal or external, does not come into
manifestation.  These occasions are opportunities for greater development in the
magical arts, and by working through the disappointment and discouragement, he can reach greater self-knowledge and technical expertise in the art.

I believe that magic always works. Magic is a tool, a reality shaper. Like any
tool, how-ever, its ability is limited to the operator’s knowledge and skill.
For an illustration, let’s use the bow and arrow.  Your intention is the arrow
and your magical technique for directing that intention is the bow. You use the
bow/technique to poise, balance and guide the intention/arrow with the strength
of your arms and hands/ determination and will.

What happens when this all works together optimally? The will firmly grasps the
clear intention, balances it upon the technique, you gather your emotional and
mental force, and then fire the intention into the invisible world to be made
manifest. In its own time and way, your wish materializes.

Conversely, if you haven’t got the skill to bring all of these efforts together,
things can go askew. Your arrow can veer and stray, or it may travel a few feet
before losing power.  Your bow can break, or not be strong enough to propel the
arrow.  Or, you may find that you’ve got your bow and arrow ready to use, but
you haven’t got sufficient strength to manipulate it.

I offer the following meditation process for those times when it seems that your
magic doesn’t work.  When you’ve tried all the techniques, when you’ve gotten no
results, when you’re wondering if any of this matters at all, the process in
this meditation can produce miracles and create a sense of completion.  You can
read the script into a tape, or have a friend lead you through it.

River Of Life Meditation

Find a comfortable place where you can relax and be completely
quiet…relax…allow your thought snow to just come and go…come and go…and
take a deep breath in and hold it…(pause)…now gather up the tension in your
body, and release it as you exhale …take another deep breath, and as you
exhale, let go of anybody else’s energy or thoughts you may be carrying….and
breathe in new energy…breathe in new possibilities …and allow your  body to
fill with lightness…feel it  becoming lighter and lighter as you relax more
and more…relaxing deeply…going  deeper…feeling very  light now…so light
you could almost float away……….

And as you relax, imagine a beautiful colored mist is swirling up around you,
billowing up around you into a cushiony, soft, cloud of energy…and you are
resting completely upon this cloud…and you are safe…as you breathe in and
out, let your thoughts just come and go…relaxing more and more…and the cloud
of energy now lifts you up into the air and carries your down into your own
inner world…down between the boundaries of time and space…to a place of
timeless beauty and infinite possibilities…floating down now, going deeper and
deeper, leaving the outer  world and  its concerns far behind, as  you drift and
float on this beautiful cloud….going further and further- ….down below you
is a rock, a giant rock…and the cloud  gently and effortlessly lands upon the
rock and  you step off it, as the cloud swirls back into a mist and disappears
for now…

Stand upon this rock now, and feel the strength of it under your feet…and as
you turn around, you look out upon a great river…flowing as far as you can
see…seeming to come from some infinite place…and disappearing into an
infinite place,,,a flowing, endless river of energy…this is  the river of all
life waters…all of life draws upon the life-force that moves through its
steaming currents…look closely at the water…what color is it? It may look
like liquid light to you…look deeply into it, and sense the power and depth of
the river…what sound does it make as it courses through its channels?…as you
stand  securely upon your rock, notice and fragrance…and  bend down and cup
your hands in the living water, and splash some of it on your face…feel the
life giving force on your skin…take a sip of the water…allow the river of
life to nourish you….

Now relax a moment upon the rock…and bring into your mind the magical
intention that never seemed to go anywhere…what were you trying to
accomplish?…what was the basic intention you had?…what was the emotion
behind the intention?…feel  the energy  of that emotion moving onto the palms
of your hands now…feel the energy glowing… pulsating…breathe and allow
your intention that you’re still clinging to externalize…the energy of it is
now shimmering, glowing…swirling into a sphere…allow all of your desire to
flow into this sphere…and allow this sphere to appear to you however it
appears…and  just observe what you see…you may see pictures or symbols
emerging within the sphere…whatever you see is fine…

When your sphere is completely filled with the last of your desire, emotion and
intention, hold it aloft…feel the power of it in you hands, a globe of power
that you can now release…and look out into the river of life…watch as its
currents of possibility flow for ever and ever, as far as you can see…and
whenever you’re ready, with as much and as little force as you need, throw the
pulsating sphere into the river…and give this intention to the life force of
this great river…watch as the sphere touches the water…and gradu-ally
disappears into the current…

Take a deep breath… as the sphere disappears the last of your intention and
emotion and desire merges with the source of all life, from which it originally
came…and leaves you…

Now complete any business here that you need to finish…take a few moments to
enjoy the flowing river of life, and know that the possibilities it nourishes
can bring miracles into you life too…

Take another deep breath, and notice the colored mist is once again swirling
around you…billowing up underneath you to form a beautiful cloud of cushiony
energy, which is lifted up into the air, with you upon it…relaxing into the
cloud you are returning the way you came…lifting up up through time and space,
coming back from the inner world… coming up… further and further…floating
and drifting back…coming back…bringing you all the way back into your body
now, into this room…brining your attention completely back into this time and
place…take a deep breath and begin to re-orient yourself to the          outer
world…and when you’re ready, count to three…, and on the count of three open
your eyes, and return feeling relaxed, alert and at peace.

* * *
As always, change any of the wording or images in this meditation if it suits
your purpose better.  The important part is just to finally and completely let
go of your intention, so that the energy can be recycled in whatever form the
creative force and your own consciousness will allow.  Out of this release, new
lives, new opportunities, and new magical opportunities are born!

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THE PHYSICS AND ETHICS OF MAGICK

              THE PHYSICS AND ETHICS OF MAGICK

What we truly and earnestly aspire to be, that in some sense, we are. The mere
aspiration, by changing the frame of mind, for the moment realizes itself
– Anna Jameson

Magick has always been part of Witchcraft. From the dawn of humanity it has been
a tool used to help alter the forces which shape our lives. Today’s Pagans have
reclaimed this viewpoint; we are not merely helpless masses of flesh, void of
any personal power, groveling at the mercy of the fates.
The precise content of our spells has changed over the centuries, but not
the methods, and certainly not human need. It is interesting to note that the
magickal desires found in weathered grimoires are the same desires we have
today, principally: love, security, health, and fertility.

What Magick Is and How It Works

Our detractors try to tell us, and anyone else who will listen, that magick is
inherently evil; that it utilizes “unnatural” or evil forces in order to work.
They believe that mere humans cannot naturally possess any power of their own;
therefore it must be obtained from some supernatural source and, they
illogically rationalize, any force that would aid human desire must therefore be
wicked and ask a perverse allegiance in return. This source was personified as
(need I say it?) their Satan, or anti-God.
It is this inherent power, one with which we are all born, that is the
force behind successful magick. Often we may combine this personal energy with
that of nature (by using herbs, stones, etc., as our catalyst and focal point),
or with that of the elemental world (by aligning our inherent power with that of
faeries, elementals, or of the elements themselves), or by working in tandem
with the creative power of Gods and Goddesses. But no matter how many of these
combinations we try, we, the practicing magickians, are the ultimate source of
magickal power.
Belief in magick as part of religious practice was an accepted part of
everyday ancient Pagan life, and flourished for many, many centuries before
Satan became an accepted theological construct of Christianity nearly two
thousand years ago. For the old Witches, magick was not viewed as an operation
of supernatural forces since, logically, nothing supernatural could exist.
Whether one believed the universe was created by a sentient deity, or wished to
believe that it exploded into existence of its own accord, the fact remained
that certain natural laws operated from which no deviation could occur. Cats
don’t sprout antlers overnight, autumn does not suddenly appear to follow
winter, and a maple tree doesn’t become an elm at will. Everything has its place
in the time/space continuum – including magick.
Magick has long been understood by its practitioners to be no more than
the manipulation of natural forces not yet understood by either science or
psychology. To create a spell we teach ourselves to sense and “see” these
energies, and invest them with our own energies in order to bend them to our
will. On the physical plane we can see this same concept used in the martial art
known as Judo. Through Judo one is taught to take advantage of the natural
energy and momentum of one’s opponent, making it possible for a ninety-pound
woman to toss a two hundred-pound man over her head. The natural energy that
makes this feat possible is there, waiting to be harnessed and directed to
release itself to the desired outcome.
Look around you. Right now. Put down this book and note all the items in
the place you are in at this moment. Note all those modern miracles of
technology you take for granted that would have gotten you hanged for being in
league with the Devil only two hundred years ago: your car, your television,
your CD player, radios, electric lights, even a simple ballpoint pen. All of
these things would have been seen as manifestations of magick by virtually
everyone, and as a sign of the presence of evil by more than just a few. But for
those who understand – or pretend to understand – the factual scientific
principles on which these items work, they are not “magickal” at all. They are
simply things which operate through natural scientific principles.
It is highly likely that the magick of today will be the science of
tomorrow, that eventually we will discover what it is about the energy of the
trained magickal mind that can manifest wishes and desires. As scientists and
psychologists continue to study the evolving human mind, they may unlock the
secrets of creation from a single directed thought. This conceptual hinge upon
which all magick is hung may be seen as being overly simplified, but it is the
basis of all spellwork. Everything that exists – everything – had to first begin
as a single thought, and somehow those thoughts had to be directed, both on the
mental and on the physical planes, in order to manifest as reality. (Even Judeo-
Christian mysticism teaches that we are merely thought-forms in the mind of
God and, when he ceases to think about us, we will perish.)

Five basic ingredients are needed for any successful spell.

1. The desire or need for something
2. An emotional investment in the outcome of the spell
3. The knowledge to work the spell
4. The belief that it exists on the mental/astral planes
5. The ability to keep silent

Without desire and need there can be no spark of the imagination that
fires the emotions to drive the spells. Without magickal knowledge a Witch has
no idea of what to do to make the magick. Without belief that focused thoughts
create a reality that can be brought into the physical world, there is no magick
at all.

Keeping silent about magickal work is another very old belief. It may have
stemmed partly from fear of discovery by the Witch hunters. On another level
there is an old adage that energy divided is energy lost. In other words, the
more you speak to others of your work, the more energy you lose, energy which
could otherwise be channeled into your desired outcome. You may also find
yourself talking to someone who does not believe in the power of magick, or has
some vested interest in your failure, perhaps jealousy or a need to “prove” the
unworkability of magick. Such people can do great damage to your magick by their counter-energy. Never mind that they do not believe in what you are doing. We all have the power to project energy, and their mental output can work against you.

Those who do not understand the principles of magic fear the mysterious
source of the manifestation more than the manifestation itself. If we look again
to the natural laws of the universe for answers, we find there is really no
mystery. All of us were taught the basic law of physics in junior high science
which states:

MATTER CAN BE NEITHER CREATED NOR DESTROYED, IT CAN ONLY CHANGE FORM.

Unlike television Witches, such as the ever-popular Samantha Stephens, we
cannot wiggle our noses and create something from nothing. In order to manifest a house on a vacant lot we do not – and cannot – create matter. Rather, we set up energy patterns that draw the energy to us and shape it into the form we want to see. This would involve consorting with a good contractor rather than with demons. The language that has evolved around magick over the centuries also tells us that it is not an instantaneous event, but a process of building piece-by-piece. Various mythologies tell of Goddesses of magick who are spinners and
weavers, creating their reality step-by-step as a seamstress embroiders a
tapestry. With her patience and persistence a rich picture is born, and it is no
accident that we have adopted the words spinning, weaving, casting, working,
crafting, and creating to describe our spellwork. There is no rule anywhere in Paganism to tell us how much or how little magick we must weave, or even that we have to make magick at all. If you are not sure about its working principles, or feel that you are not ready for magick in your life, then don’t do it. If you continue to follow a Pagan path the time will eventually come when you win find yourself casting a spell as easily as you call upon your deities.Once you decide to create a spell to meet a need, begin constructing it by following these twenty-four steps:

1. Clearly understand and define your magickal goal. Write it down or state it
out loud to help form it solidly in your mind. By doing this you begin to invest
the spell and the desired outcome with your emotions and energy. If you have
more than one need, you may wish to spread them out. You can work more than one spell at a “session,” but doing so will dissipate and scatter your energies,
leaving less for each spell. If you feel you must do multiple spells, limit them
to three and try to relate them in some way, so that the energy you raise
remains as focused as possible.

2. Be sure of the ethics of your hoped-for outcome. Approach the spell from
all angles to satisfy yourself that you are not violating anyone else’s free
will or being manipulative. Many Witches like to do a divination first, to be
doubly sure that their spell will not have any unforeseen ramifications. If the
results of the divination are negative, try rethinking your intent to see if you
can circumvent the problem. Then do another divination and see what comes up.

3. If you wish to use a specific element as a focus for your magick, decide
which one is most appropriate and collect items to represent that energy.

4. Plan how you will visualize your goal and believe in what you see. The powers
of the mind are only just now beginning to be explored by science. We have all
heard stories of terminal patients who have healed themselves, and of faith
healers who use belief to manifest miracle cures. Visualization uses that power
to form mental pictures that are invested with personal energy and emotion. It
is the soul that breathes life into all magick, and the soul that is the most
important element in its outcome. The moment you start visualizing the
resolution of a magickal need is the moment you begin to create the changes in
your deep mind necessary for the magick to manifest.

5. If you are working with advanced natural magick you will need to prepare a
long-range plan in accordance with the above guidelines. This will entail
checking moon phases, laying in enough supplies for the duration of the spell,
and planning how the energy can be sustained through each day.

6. Gather candles, stones, or whatever else you intend to use as a catalyst for
your focus or to direct the energy you will raise. Empower those items with your
personal energy by projecting into them the energy of your goal. Keep in mind
that these tools, including your cherished ritual tools, have no power in and of
themselves. The power is not in the tools, but inside the Witch trained to use
them. Without you, they are useless. They merely provide a way to focus your
energy and a means for directing it towards its goal.

7. Decide upon your “words of power,” the words or chants you will use to help
focus and raise energy. You may write them out, or simply remember key phrases you wish to use as you improvise. Some Witches like to create simple poems so they will be easier to remember.

8. If you wish to use a special deity or mythic figure in your magick, decide on
which one or ones, and on how you will evoke, invoke, and/or honor them. You may wish to write out special prayers or blessings and memorize them.

9. Decide when you want to do the spell. This can be any time you personally
need the magick, at the time when your coven regularly meets, or you may wish to take into consideration moon phases and/or other astrological influences. If
your life is as busy as most people’s today, you may have to choose the only
night when you will be free and alone. The timing is much less important than
the energy you bring to the spell.

10. At the appropriate time, gather what you will be using and go to the place
where you will perform the spell. This can be at your altar, indoors or
outdoors, at your coven meeting site, or anywhere else that feels appropriate,
comfortable, and private.

11. Cast your circle and, if you like, call the quarters, or do as you would
when opening any other ritual. If you are using advanced magickal techniques you win definitely need to employ these visualizations to be effective.

12. Your magick is now beginning in earnest. Invite whatever elementals,
faeries, spirits, or deities you wish to have present as you work. They should
always be welcome, but they are not necessary for spellwork.

13. Clear your mind and begin visualizing your goal. This is probably the most
important step in the spell-casting process and you should invest the mental
image with as much energy as you can muster. Recall your need and make your
emotional connection with it as deep as you can, on as many levels as possible.

14. Raise energy within yourself and pour it into the magickal object(s) in
whatever way feels right to you. This can be done as a mental projection,
through dance or song, or intense visualization.

15. Do whatever physical actions your spell requires. Some need no special
actions, but many require some basic movement, even if it is only lighting a
candle. Use your words of power, light your candles, bury your herbs, mentally
charge your stones, and/or raise your cone of power.

16. Take advantage of natural phenomena that can help you raise energy. A storm, for instance, is an excellent source of energy that any Witch can draw upon to help feed a spell. Allow yourself to become part of the storm and feel yourself psychically drawing on its vast stores of energy as you seek to raise your own energies or cone of power.

17. When you feel you have put as much energy into the spell as you possibly
can, send the energy out to do your will. You can visualize this as a cone of
power being sent out, or use any other mental image you like. Body language
helps, too. Relax, throw up your arms, raise a tool, kneel, send out a cone of
power, or do whatever else makes you feel the energy go forth. Be sure to direct
it out from you visually as well.

18. You should finish your spell with words such as the traditional “So Mote It
Be.’ Mote is an obsolete word for “must’ The phrase is synonymous with “Amen,”
“So It Is,” and “It is Done” It is a statement of completion and an affirmation
that you know your magick is successful. All magick is worked from the point of
view that the desired goal is already manifest – it will not come to be, but IT
IS. Always phrase your magickal desires in the present tense; for example, “I
have love in my life now,” or, “My bins are now paid in full.’ Talking of magick
happening in the future will keep it forever in the future, always just out of
reach.

19. Meditate briefly on your goal. Again, visualize it as already manifest.
Smile, breathe a sigh of relief, and know the magick is already at work for you.

20. Thank and dismiss all faeries, spirits, and deities who have come to witness
or aid in your magick.

21. Ground your excess energy into the earth and open your circle. Excess
energy, raised during your spell work but not fully sent away from you when you
sent it to do its job, lingers on and around you, The best way to ground this
excess is to place your hands palms down on the earth, into a bowl of soil, or
on the floor of your home. Physically and psychically feel the excess energy
draining out of you. Know that it is being absorbed and dispersed into mother
earth.

22. If you have ritualized your spell, dismiss your quarters or do whatever
other endings your rituals traditionally require. If you are working your magick
with a coven this is standard practice.

23. Record your spell in your Magickal Diary or Book of Shadows with the date,
time, weather conditions, and any astrological data you wish to include. This
will be useful later when you have done enough spells to look for patterns. For
example, you may see that your most efficacious spells were done on Sundays or
when it was cloudy or snowing, or when you had faeries present, worked with a
particular deity, burned green candles, or when the moon was full. Everyone has
different affinities. These patterns will help you pick the best times for your
spell work.

24. Back up your desire on the physical plane. This is a must. For example, if
you have done a spell for healing don’t avoid seeing your doctor. You will need
all the help at your disposal to overcome your illness, and magick and medical
science make great partners.

Until you achieve your magickal goal you should spend some time each day
focusing on it by dearly visualizing it as a fait accompli. These added boosts
of daily energy can often mean the difference between success and failure.
                      ————————————

**This is an excerpt from Lady of the Night – A Handbook of Moon Magick &
Rituals by Edain McCoy, 1995. If you like this information, please buy a copy of
this book. It will make a great addition to your book collection. ISBN 1-56718-
660-2

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The Magickal Pyramid

The Magickal Pyramid

To Know, To Will, To Dare, To Keep Silent

To Know:  Knowledge is the first key in any magickal working.  We must know what we want to do, and how to do it with skill.

To Will:  The focus of will provides the external energy necessary to do Work.

To Dare:  This is the “doing” of the magickal operation, sometimes not without
risk or effort.

To Keep Silent:  Do not “diffuse” the energies of ANY working by “talking it to
death”, PARTICULARLY with those not directly involved or concerned  with the
operation.

These four elements form a dynamic interaction with each other and the work or
object of the work represented by the  “Point” of the pyramid if you visualize
this diagram in three dimensions, rather than the two of the computer screen.
These seem to be fundamental principles for group ritual as well as solitary
spellwork.

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THE LAWS OF MAGIC

THE LAWS OF MAGIC

The Laws of Magic are not legislative laws, but, like those of physics or
musical harmony, are actually fairly practical observations that have been
accumulated over thousands of years. These laws describe the way magic seems to behave.  Most of these laws will make sense to you (I hope), and even the more
obscure ones should make some sense to you, but if they don’t, ignore them, or
send me some e-mail, and I will try to explain.

The LAW OF KNOWLEDGE: This is probably the most widely used law, and probably encompasses all the others in some way.  The basis of this law is that
understanding brings control.  The more that is known about a subject, the
easier it is to exercise control over it.  Knowledge is power.

The LAW OF SELF-KNOWLEDGE: An obvious derivative of the LAW OF KNOWLEDGE, this law carries additional connotations, as a mage who does not have knowledge of himself does not have knowledge (and therefore control) of his own magic.  This law is one of the reason’s “evil” mages are very rare – a dedication to “evil for evil’s sake” is usually do to a lack of introspection and awareness of oneself.  It is difficult to do harm to others when you understand fully what that kind of harm would do to you.  Know thyself.

The LAW OF CAUSE AND EFFECT: A simple scientific understanding – if exactly the same actions are done under exactly the same conditions, they will be associated with exactly the same results. Magicians have at least as much belief in cause and effect as modern physicists do, they just realize that a good ritual, like a good theatrical performance or a good bread recipe, isn’t always predictable. In truth, a spell involves so many variables, that controlling or even
understanding them all is impossible.  The key to magical success is learning
which variables are the most important, and how to keep them constant.  Control
over the variables is icing on the cake.

The LAW OF SYNCHRONICITY: Two or more events happening at the same
time are likely to have more in common than the merely temporal. Very few events ever happen in isolation from other events.  There is no such thing as a mere coincidence.

The LAW OF ASSOCIATION: If any two pattern have elements in common, the patterns interact “through” those common elements, and control of one pattern facilitates control of the other(s) depending (among other factors) upon the number of common elements involved.  This is a very important law, up there with the LAW OF KNOWLEDGE.

The LAW OF SIMILARITY: Having an accurate physical or mental represent-tion of something facilitates control over it.  This one is fairly obvious in it’s usage
– having a model, picture, or other representation of your target (like a voodoo
doll) gives you power to effect the target.  Look alikes are alike.

The LAW OF CONTAGION: Objects or beings in physical contact with each other continue to interact after separation.  Everyone you have ever touched has a magical link with you, though it is probably pretty weak unless the contact was
intense and/or prolonged or repeated frequently.  Magical power is contagious.
Naturally, having a part of someone’s body (nails, hair, spit, etc.) gives the
best contagion link.

The LAW OF NAMES: Knowing the complete and TRUE name of an object, being, or process gives one complete control over it.  This works because a name is a definition (yes, even “Harold”, “Marie”, “Kunte”, and “Jasmine” were at one
time) as well as a contagion link, and an association (if you call something the
same name over and over, that name becomes associated with the thing).  This
also works, because knowing the complete and true name of something or someone means that you have achieved a complete understanding of  it’s or their nature. This is why, in most pre-industrial cultures, people are given “secret names”, as well as “public names”, and why the sharing of a secret name is such an act of  trust – because the secret name is considered to be very close to, if not
identical with, the person’s true name.

The LAW OF WORDS OF POWER: There exist certain words that are able to alter the internal and external realities of those uttering them, and the power may rest in the very sounds of the words as much as their meanings.  Many of such words are names, though the meanings may have been lost or forgotten.  Very many magical tools require words to be inscribed upon them and/or said over them during their construction and/or use.

The LAW OF PERSONIFICATION: Any phenomenon may be considered to be
alive and to have a personality – that is, to “be” an entity or being.  Anything
can be a person.  Most weather mages personify the winds and the clouds, for
example, and thus find focusing their magic on the atmosphere much easier to do.

The LAW OF INVOCATION: It is possible to establish internal communication with entities from either inside or outside oneself, said entities seeming to be
inside of oneself during the communication process.

The LAW OF EVOCATION: It is possible to establish external communication with entities from either inside or outside oneself, said entities seeming to be
outside oneself during the communication process.

The LAW OF IDENTIFICATION: It is possible through maximum association between elements of oneself and those of another being to actually become that being, to the point of sharing it’s knowledge and wielding it’s power.  This is the law that controls most lengthy or permanent possession phenomena.

The LAW OF PERSONAL UNIVERSES: Every sentient being lives in and quite possibly creates a unique universe which can never be 100% identical to that lived in by another.  So called “reality” is in fact a matter of consensus opinions.  This law is nowhere near as obvious as the other laws in it’s applications, but if
you can figure some out, you can use it.

The LAW OF INFINITE UNIVERSES: The total number of universes into which all possible combinations of existing phenomena could be organized is infinite.
Anything is possible, though some things are more probable than others.  You
might consider this to refer to the “alternate probability worlds” of science
fiction, but it also has a much wider application.

The LAW OF PRAGMATISM: If a pattern of belief or behavior enables a being to
survive and to accomplish chosen goals, then that belief or behavior is “true”
or “real” or “sensible”.  If it works, it’s true.  Another rather obscure law,
but it does have some very useful applications.

The LAW OF TRUE FALSEHOODS: It is possible for a concept or act to violate the truth patterns of a given personal universe and still be “true”, provided that
it “works” in a specific situation.  If  it’s a paradox, it’s still probably
true.  This law is basically useless, except to justify use of the above three
laws without screwing things up in your version of the real world.

The LAW OF SYNTHESIS: The synthesis of two or more “opposing” patterns of data will produce a new pattern that will be truer than either of the first two were. That is, it will be applicable to more levels of reality, and this new pattern
may not be a compromise, but may be something rather new indeed.

The LAW OF POLARITY: Any pattern of data can be split into (at least) two
“opposing” characteristics, and each will contain the essence of the other
within itself.

The LAW OF OPPOSITES: A sub-law of POLARITY.  The “opposite” of a pattern
contains information about that pattern, by providing information on what the
pattern is not.  Thus, control over a pattern’s opposite (or close to it’s
opposite) facilitates control over the pattern itself.  (Note that this one I
alone take the blame for, as it is my own extension of POLARITY and SIMILARITY)

The LAW OF DYNAMIC BALANCE: To survive, let alone to become powerful, one must keep every aspect of one’s universe in a state of dynamic balance with every other aspect.  Extremism is dangerous, as the extreme being becomes so
associated with the extreme aspect, that they lose the ability to avoid that
aspect at all.  This is another reason “evil” mages are rare, as continuous
association with pain or death will cause a mage pain or death, ending the
mage’s ability to continue actively with “evil”.  This is also why “good” mages,
especially healers, tend to live a long time.

The LAW OF PERVERSITY: Sometimes known as Murphy’s Law.  If  anything can go wrong, it will, and in the most annoying manner possible.  Magical associations sometimes operate in the reverse of what was desired, and meaningful coincidences are just as likely to be unpleasant as pleasant.  Even if nothing can go wrong, some element of the universe may change so that things will go wrong anyway.  Whether we like it or not, the gods (or fates, or what have you) do have a sense of humor.  Emotionally healthy mages have less problems with this law than others do, as the mages own subconscious mind is probably a major perpetrator of this law.

The LAW OF UNITY: Every phenomena in existence is linked directly or indirectly to every other one, past, present, or future. Perceived separations between  phenomena are based on incomplete sensing and/or understanding.

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TREE MAGICK

TREE MAGICK

WILLOW FOR LOVE, OAK FOR STRENGTH
by Edain McCoy
(from the ’97 Llewellyn Magickal Almanac)

Many mystical and magical uses have been found for the thirteen trees which
symbolize the months of the Celtic lunar year, and it is likely, considering the
popularity of Celtic Paganism, that many more will be discovered. However you
choose to observe the lunar months, it can be helpful to first imbibe a magical
brew designed to attune your body and spirit to the occasion.

Following are the recipes for thirteen teas which will accomplish just that. The
measurements given are approximate, and for making one eight-ounce mug full you
should use no more than a single heaping teaspoon of dry herbs placed inside a
tea ball or cheesecloth strainer. All liquid measurements should be added to
taste. Allow the tea to steep at least two minutes, longer if you prefer a
stronger flavor. As always, when ingesting untried substances, be sure to test
for any allergic reactions first, and remember that no herbal preparation should
ever be taken over the long term without consulting an expert pharmacologist or
botanist.

Though very few of the recipes actually contain any part of the trees to which
they are attributed, they work quite well because their ingredients rely on
using herbs and juices which share magical affinities with the properties of the
tree. These properties are listed after the name of each tree so that, if you
choose to, you can make substitutions based upon this knowledge. Depending upon
the particular Celtic tradition you follow, the lunar year starts with either
the first new moon closest to Samhain or the one just before Yule.

BIRCH MOON
Matter of beginnings and children, purification.
3 parts ginger
1 part lemongrass
pinch of dill
splash of lemon juice

ROWAN MOON
Empowerment, clairvoyance, air magic, exorcism.
1 part valerian root
3 parts peppermint
pinch of eyebright
pinch of ginger

Editors note: Valerian is a powerful sedative that affects each person
differently. You may wish
to use a very small amount of this herb at first to determine how it affects
your body chemistry.

ASH MOON
Matters of the intellect, magic, healing.
2 parts angelica
½ part sage
½ part black cohosh
pinch of rosemary

WILLOW MOON
Matters of the Otherworld, healing, love, water magic, feminine mysteries.
2 parts willow bark
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
½ part dried apples or a splash of apple juice
pinch of rosemary

OAK MOON
Lust, strength, energy, endurance, fertility, fire magic, male mysteries.
1-1/2 parts white oak bark
½ part mint
½ part orange peel
pinch of cinnamon or nutmeg

HAZEL MOON
Manifestations, protection, healing, fertility.
2 parts ginseng
½ part mugwort
pinch of savory
slash of any noncitrus juice

ALDER MOON
Spirituality, wholeness of being.
1 part linden
1 part hibiscus
2 tablespoons of cream or milk
splash of cranberry juice

HAWTHORN MOON
Peace, sleep, dreams, prosperity, happiness.
1 part hawthorn
1 part catnip
½ part rue
½ part chamomile

HOLLY MOON
Matters of animals, magic, prophecy.
1 part kelp
½ part rose petals
½ part raspberry
pinch of yarrow

VINE MOON
Earth magic, sex magic, overcoming difficulties.
1 part blackberry
1 part dandelion
splash of currant wine or grape juice
pinch of hibiscus

IVY MOON
Healing, cooperation, binding.
1 part mullein
¼ part eucalyptus
½ part barberry

ELDER MOON
Exorcism, prosperity, astral travel. Finding faeries.
1 part ginko
1 part mugwort
1 part valerian (see note under Rowan Moon)
1 part spearmint
pinch of anise (may substitute extract)
pinch of allspice

REED MOON
Fertility, love, protection.
1 part red clover
1 part hyssop
1 part boneset
pinch of slippery elm

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