Signs that You May Be a Redneck Pagan
If chewing tobacco is considered a sacred herb
If part of your rite includes throwing shotgun shells into the fire
If the bell on your altar was ever worn by an animal in a pasture
If the cakes and wine are done with a bowie-knife, a can of Foster’s and Little Debbie’s
If they chose their High Priestess at a wet t-shirt night
If when your priestess says “Blessed Be” in circle, you respond with “YEEE-HAW!”
If you bought your chalice at the Piggly Wiggly
If you buy your incense and candles at Wal-Mart (ouch!)
If you call the God & Goddess by hollerin’ “Hey, Y’all! Watch me
If you carry your ritual sword in your pickup’s gun rack
If you found out your familiar is an oppossum and still ate it
If you have cast a love spell on livestock
If you have ever refilled your chalice from a keg.
If you have ever written a spell on the back of a Denny’s menu
If you invoke the sprits so that your beer lasts longer
If you shoot guns into the air when the priestess says, “The circle is open but unbroken”
If you think the Wiccan Rede is good for making twig furniture.
If you’ve ever done a candle spell for your local high-school football team ..
If you’ve ever harvested ritual herbs with a weed wacker ..
If you’ve ever meditated to “Dueling Banjos”
If your Wand of Power is a cattle prod
If your altar cloth is vinyl
If your annointing oil smells like “Old Spice”
If your broom has four-wheel drive and SC plates
If your circle dance includes the words “dosey-do” ..
If your craft name starts with Bubba
If your familiar can point quail
If your ritual music includes Johnny Cash’s “Ring of Fire
Well, you might just be a Redneck Pagan!
Astronomy Picture of the Day
Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.
2016 January 28
Explanation: Giant elliptical galaxy M60 and spiral galaxy NGC 4647 do look like an odd couple in this sharp cosmic portrait from the Hubble Space Telescope. But they are found in a region of space where galaxies tend to gather, on the eastern side of the nearby Virgo Galaxy Cluster. About 54 million light-years distant, bright M60’s simpler egg-like shape is created by its randomly swarming older stars, while NGC 4647’s young blue stars, gas and dust are organized into winding arms rotating in a flattened disk. Spiral NGC 4647 is estimated to be more distant than M60, some 63 million light-years away. Also known as Arp 116, the pair of galaxies may be on the verge of a significant gravitational encounter, though. M60 (aka NGC 4649) is about 120,000 light-years across. The smaller NGC 4647 spans around 90,000 light-years, about the size of our own Milky Way.
Use Sirius to imagine sun’s path through Milky Way
If you’re in the Northern Hemisphere now, you can use the brilliant star Sirius – and the star Vega – to imagine the direction our sun and solar system are traveling through space. The sun in its orbit is traveling away from Sirius and toward the star Vega. Although we couldn’t fit them both on one chart, Vega shines over your northwestern horizon, opposite Sirius, at dusk/nightfall at this time of year. Vega sets at early evening while Sirius stays out until the wee hours of the morning.
So if you stand outside at dusk or nightfall with your back to Sirius – facing northwest – you’ll be facing the direction our solar system moves through the Milky Way galaxy. Cool, huh?
Tonight’s chart, and the photo below, both can help you be sure you’re seeing Sirius. Both show the east-southeastern sky not long after the sky gets dark, as viewed from mid-northern latitudes. The brightest star of nighttime – Sirius – shows up close to the horizon in early evening, rising upward as evening deepens into night. Sirius is found by drawing a line through the three stars of Orion’s Belt.
When an overwhelmingly bright star like Sirius hovers near the horizon, it doesn’t just twinkle. Itscintillates: sparkles in red and blue.
By the way, the direction to the star Vega – the general direction toward which our sun is traveling through space – is called the solar apex or sometimes the apex of the sun’s way.
Bottom line: Look for the star Sirius in the constellation Canis Major at nightfall tonight. It’s easy to find because it’s so bright – brightest star in the sky. Once you find it, turn around so that your back is to this bright star. You’ll be facing into the sun’s path through the Milky Way!
Bruce McClure is the chief writer for the popular EarthSky Tonight pages. Since joining EarthSky in 2004, he has written thousands of astronomy articles, enjoyed here by millions. He also writes, gives planetarium shows and hosts a wide assortment of public astronomy programs in and around his home in upstate New York. If you ask an astronomy question on our site, it’s likely to be Bruce that answers it. His love for the heavens has taken him to Lake Titicaca in Bolivia, and he has sailed the North Atlantic, earning his celestial navigation certificate through the School of Ocean Sailing and Navigation. Bruce is also a sundial aficionado. He says his number one passion – besides his wife Alice – is stargazing.
Article published on EarthSky
The Words of Confucius
Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.
How will our day be?
Hmm, so does this mean we drop everything and go have fun or we are going to have fun-filled day???
(Scratching head over this one!)
Your Daily Influences
January 28, 2016
Two of Cups
The harmonious blending of the male and female self. All aspects of your life are in balance
Thurisaz embodies the polarity of life and death and the struggle to keep them in balance. Expect conflict, hardship and obstacles, but be assured that remaining focused and in touch with your inner strengths will see you through whatever comes your way. This Rune may also represent protection from your enemies, which is never a bad thing.
Virgo the Virgin
This aspect of your life will be strongly influenced by a person who is modest, shy, meticulous, reliable, practical, diligent, intelligent and analytical. This person may be a leader of some kind where you are employed.
Your Daily Influences represent events and challenges the current day will present for you. They may represent opportunities you should be ready to seize. Or they may forewarn you of problems you may be able to avoid or lessen. Generally it is best to use them as tips to help you manage your day and nothing more.
Your Past, Present & Future Reading for Today
That Which is Behind You
You are surrounded by opportunities to grow at the moment. Take advantage of this time by exploring every avenue available to you to grow both spiritually and materially
Your Current Place
Remember that you will reap what you sow. Do not allow yourself to become greedy or totally absorbed in yourself. To do so will leave you isolated and unhappy.
That Which is before You
Now is a time for you to act on the basis of clear thought and analysis. Weigh all your choices before making any decisions. Seek solutions to your problems through logic and not emotion. To act on impulse may be very harmful to your future.
Your Daily Domino
January 28, 2016
Your spiritual self can move to new heights, strengths, and understanding if you allow it to. Now is a good time for you to devote a portion of your energy to better understanding your relationship with the universe and your God.
Your Ancient Symbol Card for Today
The powerful Owl easily makes its way through the darkest night on muted wings. Often it is only their haunting call echoing across the land that lets us know The Owl is near. Because of its amazing night vision, many cultures have attributed wisdom and the ability to uncover even the deepest secrets to the enigmatic, noble Owl. The Owl’s nocturnal prowess has lead many to see them as a messenger between the material and spirit worlds. Cultures as distinct as the African Zulus and ancient Celtics have ascribed magical powers to The Owl made them a revered companion to shaman and wizards.
As a daily card, The Owl marks a moment when wise decisions and actions must be made based upon information known to only a few, or possibly only you. It marks a time when your vision is likely to be clearer, more acute than of those around you. Spiritual revelations may be made. Secrets may be revealed that demand decisive action.
Today’s Witches Rune
Meaning: The eye has always been a powerful symbol for different cultures. Some believe that the soul resides in them, while others think it’s possible to curse a person merely by looking at them. Through our eyes we connect and express emotions and thoughts. Thus, this is one of the most powerful runes in the set, emphasizing the importance of any rune close to it. The Eye symbol is also related to “vision” is all senses, including the physical. This rune can represent our eyes and optic nerves. It can also represent activities such as research, analysis, photography and creative visualization. When it appears, there’s an urge to observe, to explore, to understand deeply what is before you. This rune is usually related to sudden realizations. Not necessarily a ‘shock’ (unless some violent rune is close it, like the Scythe and the Man), but more related to the lifting of veils. Your eyes are suddenly open, and you see things that were unknown to you before. A change of perception and focus in life is to be expected when this rune appears… whatever the situation is, the way you see it will be transformed.
The Eye rune also says that now it’s time for you to go after what you want. Your focus is powerful right now, and everything you concentrate on can become successful.This rune often represents a lonely journey towards a goal… it suggests a calling and a connection to something bigger, a sense of purpose. Your path is clear to you now; you know which way to go, even if you don’t know where exactly it’ll take you. In a spiritual level, This rune can represent a development of one’s psychic skills, or an advancement in one’s spiritual path. As you connect yourself to a deeper source, and learn to trust, you gain wisdom and your eyes see far. A higher power seems to be guiding you in times when the Eye appears. Like the Sun rune, this rune can mean that right now all eyes are on you. But unlike the former symbol, when the Eye appears there’s some discomfort related to such attention. It may be excessive and even unwelcome. In fact, this is one of this rune’s most negative facets: it may show an invasion of privacy, when someone (or even you) pry into another’s life and scrutinize their every move. Beware of flatterers and stalkers. The Eye cautions against obsession and the tendency to spy on other people’s affairs. In a relationship reading, the Eye can symbolize a predestined bond to another person.
Note that this does not promise a happy ending, but simply says that this connection is powerful and will be very important in your life. In fact, because the Eye rune is a solitary one, it is possible that the people in the relationship cannot be together due to difficult circumstances. Still, your bond that person will transform you. In a negative way, this rune can cautions against invading your partner’s personal space or stalking them.
Additional information about Today’s Witches Rune courtesy of Your Spiritual Journey Australia
Your Crowley Thoth Tarot Card for Today
The Tower is perfect card for the revolutionary or iconoclast or anyone who flourishes in rapidly changing environments. What The Tower brings to the mix is sudden, usually unexpected change. With that change there will be a period of disorder, and there may be loss. However, the loss is probably not yours, since you may well be the agent that created the change to begin with. Many positive things can occur from the change The Tower indicates: Truths will be laid bare, revelations and breakthroughs are not just possible but likely, and nothing spurs creativity like a good dose of chaos and confusion. In the end it is likely that what replaces what was lost in the fall of The Tower will be worth the loss.
Daily I Ching Hexagram
January 28th, 2016
Keep to a tight budget. Avoid the frivolous and you will realize your goals.
Line One of Your Hexagram is a 9:
Care for others and others will care for you.
Line Two of Your Hexagram is a 9:
Save money for future needs. Create a budget.
Line Three of Your Hexagram is a 6:
Work as an individual but do let others lend a helping hand.
Line Four of Your Hexagram is a 6:
Expect improvement in your situation and celebrate.
Line Five of Your Hexagram is a 6:
Your leadership will insure you and others will prosper.
Line Six of Your Hexagram is a 9:
Expect to be treated as you treat others.
Ingwaz signifies completion, success and fertility. Your present ambitions are about to be met. You are fecund in both mind and body.
Additional information about Today’s Rune, Ingwaz
inguz : Ing
Phonetic equivalent: ng
DIVINATORY MEANINGS: work, productivity, bounty, groundedness, balance, connection with the land
MAGICAL USES: fertility, farming, growth, general health, balance
ASSOCIATED MYTHS & DEITIES: Freyr / Ing, Nerthus, Thor, the Vanir
ANALYSIS: Ing is a Danish / Anglo-Saxon name for Freyr, the God of agriculture and fertility. Agriculture represents one of the first attempts by mankind to control the environment, and the fertility of crops, animals and people has always been the primary concern and religious focus of most Pagan agrarian societies. From the earliest Sumerian accounts to modern-day British folk custom, people throughout history have sought to ensure the success of their crops.
The vast majority of people in Western society have lost all contact and connection with the land and the process of growing things.
The spiritual consequences of this segregation from the earth have been disastrous, since most people find it difficult to relate to deity in a purely man-made environment. The shape of this rune can be likened to that of a field, but its real significance may lie in its balance, representing the harmonious relationship between ourselves and the four elements / four directions. Inguz reminds us of that ancient connection between the Gods and the land, and re-links (the real meaning of the ‘religion’) us with our spiritual natures through the realm of the physical. It is quite literally a grounding rune, and by reintroducing us to the earth, it reconnects our bodies, our minds and our spirits.