Witches of the Craft’s Northern & Southern Hemisphere Journal for December 9 – 10

Witches of the Craft’s Northern & Southern Hemisphere Journal for December 9 – 10

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“I want witchcraft so bad that I can’t stand it. I have wands in my apartment. And I use them sometimes. I walk into the kitchen with my wand, and I come out with something on a platter and I say, ‘See, magic happens.’ Works every time.”

–Amy Sedaris


NORTHERN HEMISPHERE

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Current Planetary Positions

December 09, 2018
Northern Hemisphere

Sun: 17 Sagittarius 24
Moon: 12 Capricorn 47
Mercury: 27 Scorpio 51
Venus: 04 Scorpio 15
Mars: 15 Pisces 01
Jupiter: 06 Sagittarius 54
Saturn: 08 Capricorn 46
Uranus: 28 Aries 56 Rx
Neptune: 13 Pisces 45
Pluto: 19 Capricorn 53

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Planetary aspects for the Month of December

December 15, 06:49 am – 1st Quarter Moon 23 26
December 16, 09:26 am – Venus sextile Saturn
December 17, 01:57 am – Mars sextile Pluto
December 20, 11:21 am – Sun trine Uranus
December 21, 12:11 pm – Venus trine Neptune
December 21, 12:36 pm – Mercury conjunct Jupiter 09 34
December 22, 12:48 pm – Full Moon at 00 49
December 24, 07:31 pm – Mercury square Neptune
December 28, 04:30 pm – Venus sextile Pluto
December 29, 04:34 am – 3rd Quarter Moon 07 36

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The Solar Almanac for Sunday, December 9, 2018

Northern Hemisphere

Sun Direction: 114.73° ESE↑
Sun Altitude: -5.31°
Sun Distance: 91.555 million mi
Next Solstice: Dec 21, 2018 4:22 pm (Winter)
Sunrise Today: 6:56 am↑ 118° Southeast
Sunset Today: 4:37 pm↑ 242° Southwest
Length of Daylight: 9 hours, 41 minutes

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Facts about the Sun’s Composition

*The sun is a ball of gas and has no solid surface.
*Its composition is 91% Hydrogen, 7.8% Helium, and 1% other gases.
*Helium is the second most abundant element both in the sun and in the universe, but very hard to find on earth.
*It contains different layers with varying temperatures; the corona, photosphere, chromosphere, and the core.
*The chromosphere contains spikes of gas called spicules.
*It is visible as a flash of color at the starting and ending of total solar eclipses.
*The photosphere is the opaque layer of gas that makes the sun appear to be solid.
*It’s also responsible for emitting light, and is cooler than the outer most layer, the corona.
*The transition region is a very narrow (60 miles / 100 km) layer between the chromosphere and the corona where the temperature rises abruptly from about 8000 to about 500,000 K.
*The corona releases a stream of charged particles referred to as solar wind.

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The Lunar Almanac for Sunday, December 9, 2018

Northern Hemisphere

Moon Direction: 99.04° E↑
Moon Altitude: -25.66°
Moon Distance: 249070 mi
Next Full Moon: Dec 22, 201811:48 am
Next New Moon: Jan 5, 20197:28 pm
Next Moonrise: Today8:49 am
Current Moon Phase: Waxing Crescent
Illumination: 4.7%

All Lunar & Solar Almanac from timeanddate.com

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Moon Lore Regarding Relationships & Marriage

*As the Moon regulates water, it’s an age-old belief that it also regulates the rise and fall of our emotional tides.
*According to some lore, the full Moon is an ideal time to accept a proposal of marriage as love is amplified. *This certainly does not mean that marriages that do not happen on Full Moon nights are not successful – although it could be less than auspicious to get married when there’s no Moon in the sky at all.
*Further, the Full Moon is the best time to consummate marriage, according to the ancient Greeks, while the New Moon is the best time to drain out stale energy and belief systems.
*The New Moon phase is also the one best for breaking up.
*According to folklore, if a young woman sees a dove and glimpses the new Moon at the same instant, she should repeat: “Bright Moon, clear Moon, Bright and fair, Lift up your right foot, There’ll be a hair.” When she removes her shoe, she’ll find a hair the color of her future husband’s.

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BEST DAYS IN DECEMBER 2018

Below are the best days for activities, based on the Moon’s sign and phase in December.

Cutting hair:
1, 3, 29, 30
Quit Smoking:
5, 28
Traveling for pleasure:
25, 26

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This Week’s Sky at a Glance, December 9 – 15

By: Alan MacRobert

Sunday, December 9

• Now the crescent Moon is easy in twilight. If it were a bow, it would be aiming an arrow down at Saturn, as shown above.

Monday, December 10

• Again the twilight crescent Moon is a bow aiming its arrow at Saturn, but now from farther away (as shown above).

• As soon as twilight ends, look above the Moon for Alpha and Beta Capricorni. Both are binocular double stars.

Tuesday, December 11

• Now you’ll find Alpha and Beta Capricorni to the right of the Moon at nightfall.

• The Summer Triangle is sinking lower in the west, and Altair is the first of its stars to go (for mid-northern observers). Start by spotting bright, zero-magnitude Vega in the northwest right after dark. The brightest star above Vega is Deneb. Altair, the Triangle’s third star, is farther to Vega’s left or lower left. How late into the night, and into the advancing season, can you keep Altair in view?

Wednesday, December 12

• The thick crescent Moon forms a roughly equilateral triangle, 20° or more on a side, with Mars to its upper left and Fomalhaut to its lower left.

Thursday, December 13

• The Mars-Moon-Fomalhaut triangle has narrowed since yesterday as the Moon moves eastward along its orbit.

• The Geminid meteor shower should be at its peak late tonight! In early evening the meteors will be few, but those that do appear will be Earth-grazers skimming far across the top of the atmosphere. As the hours pass and the shower’s radiant (near Castor in Gemini) rises higher in the east, the meteors will become shorter and more numerous — the most so from midnight to dawn.

Layer up even more warmly than you imagine you’ll need; think radiational cooling! Find a dark open spot with no local lights to get in your eyes, lie back in a reclining lawn chair, and gaze up into the stars. Be patient. As your eyes adapt to the dark, you may see a Geminid every minute or two on average as night grows late.

Friday, December 14

• In early evening, Mars shines above the Moon. Mars is about twice as big as the Moon in physical diameter, but it’s currently 425 times farther away.

Look far below them for Fomalhaut. At a distance of 25 light-years, Fomalhaut is 1.4 million times farther away than Mars.

Saturday, December 15

• Now, in early evening, Mars shines to the right of the first-quarter Moon. Look above them for the Great Square of Pegasus.

As evening grows late, Mars tilts down to the Moon’s lower right.

–Sky and Telescope

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Moon Phase Calendar

Sunday – 9th December 2018

Northern Hemisphere

Current Moon Phase: Waxing Crescent

Moon Currently in the sign of Capricorn

Moon in Capricorn:
You might have a strong need for being useful to the society and you look for justification in the outside world. You may underestimate what you want from yourself and for yourself. Shyness may be accompanied by resentment of the fact that others ignore you. Do not seek approval from the outside, it will not help you get rid of your doubt and it is harmful to you. You have to trust your inner values.

Organs influenced by Capricorn Moon Sign:
Organs: Knees, joints, backbone, spinal muscles, patella, bones, tendons and ligaments, skin, hair, spleen, the organ of balance.

These organs are now more sensitive so provide them with extra care.

Surgical operations:
Surgical operations are not recommended during the Waxing Moon.


SOUTHERN HEMISPHERE

Current Planetary Positions
December 10, 2018
Southern Hemisphere
Sun: 18 Sagittarius 25
Moon: 24 Capricorn 48
Mercury: 28 Scorpio 20
Venus: 04 Scorpio 57
Mars: 15 Pisces 40
Jupiter: 07 Sagittarius 07
Saturn: 08 Capricorn 53
Uranus: 28 Aries 55 Rx
Neptune: 13 Pisces 46
Pluto: 19 Capricorn 55

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Planetary aspects for the Month of December

December 15, 06:49 am – 1st Quarter Moon 23 26
December 16, 09:26 am – Venus sextile Saturn
December 17, 01:57 am – Mars sextile Pluto
December 20, 11:21 am – Sun trine Uranus
December 21, 12:11 pm – Venus trine Neptune
December 21, 12:36 pm – Mercury conjunct Jupiter 09 34
December 22, 12:48 pm – Full Moon at 00 49
December 24, 07:31 pm – Mercury square Neptune
December 28, 04:30 pm – Venus sextile Pluto
December 29, 04:34 am – 3rd Quarter Moon 07 36

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The Solar Almanac for Monday, December 10, 2018

Southern Hemisphere

Sun Direction: 190.91° S↑
Sun Altitude: -32.51°
Sun Distance: 91.554 million mi
Next Solstice: Dec 22, 2018 9:22 am (Summer)
Sunrise Today: 5:37 am↑ 119° Southeast
Sunset Today: 7:58 pm↑ 241° Southwest
Length of Daylight: 14 hours, 21 minutes

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The Lunar Almanac for Monday, December 10, 2018

Southern Hemisphere

Moon Direction: 217.99° SW↑
Moon Altitude: -25.13°
Moon Distance: 249110 mi
Next Full Moon: Dec 23, 20184:48 am
Next New Moon: Jan 6, 201912:28 pm
Next Moonrise: Today7:52 am
Current Moon Phase: Waxing Crescent
Illumination: 4.8%

All Lunar & Solar Almanac from timeanddate.com

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Lunar Lore

The legend of the werewolf (were has etymological roots in Old English and means man) comes from the tales of the beastly side of men coming out at the Full Moon.

The Moon is the Queen of the Underworld and a bridge to the shadowy realms of the psyche.

The Moon is a passageway to the hidden (occulted) mysteries, including ancestral memory and past lives.

The natal Moon in the birth chart can be a symbol of feminine identity for women; for men, it’s the sought-after feminine ideal, and the kind of woman to form a soul-bond with.

Molly Hall, Author
Published on ThoughtCo

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Why the seasons are reversed in the southern hemisphere ?

Simply because of the tilt of the Earth.

Because of this inclination, the northern hemisphere, receives more energy from the Sun, While the southern hemisphere receives less.

This corresponds to the boreal summer (in the northern hemisphere) and the southern winter (in the southern hemisphere).

Six months later, It’s the opposite because the southern hemisphere is better exposed to solar radiation.

In spring and autumn, the radiation received in the two hemispheres is identical. But the temperature is different, because a hemisphere coming out of winter and its soil and water have yet to be reheated, While the other hemisphere comes out of the summer and still enjoys its soil and water heat.

What’s better than this video of “It’s not rocket science” to explain it in detail …

And voila !

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BEST DAYS IN DECEMBER 2018

Below are the best days for activities, based on the Moon’s sign and phase in December.
Cutting hair:
1, 3, 29, 30
Quit Smoking:
5, 28
Traveling for pleasure:
25, 26

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Northern Hemisphere

 

Today is Sunday, December 9

Traditionally, Sunday is the first day of the week. It is also known as the Lord’s Day from it original association with the Lord, that is, the Sun God, personified as Helios, Apollo, Ogmios, Mithras, and St. Elia. But in the Northern Tradition, the sun is seen as feminine, personified as the goddess known as Phoebe in East Anglia and Saule in eastern Europe. The sun rules the conscious element of the human being, the ego, the real self, and Sunday is the day on which this conscious power is at its most effective.

Deity: Sol

Zodiac Sign: Leo

Planet: Sun

Tree: Birch

Herb: Snakeroot

Stone: Ruby

Animal: Lion

Element: Fire

Color: Gold

Rune: Sigel

 

Celtic Tree Month of Ruis (Elder) (November 25 – December 22)

The Runic Half Month of Is (November 28 – December 12)

Goddess of the Month of Astraea (November 28 – December 23)

—The Pagan Book of Days
Nigel Pennick

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The Goddess Book of Days for December 9

Fiesta of the Mother of Health in Mexico, dedicated to Tonantzin, the Virgin of Guadualupe. See also, December 12. She is Mary, Isis, Yemaya, Kwan Yin, Tonantzin, Guadualupe, the Black Virgin, Tara, Sarasvati, and Chalchiuhtlique.

The Goddesses Associated With Sunday

Sunne, Sol, Frau Sonne, Aditi, Igaehindvo, Amaterasu, Arinna, Izanami, Ochumare

The Goddess Book of Days
Diane Stein

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On Sunday, December 9, We Celebrate…

Tonatzin (Mexico)
TONATZIN

Themes: Religious Devotion; Blessing

Symbols: Soil; Light

About Tonatzin: An ancient mother figure who nurtures people and all that dwells in the land, Tonatzin is the life and light of the world. Today she joins our festival as the originator of this holiday.

To Do Today: Juan Diego, an Indian convert, was surprised when this goddess appeared to him in 1531 in an ancient site of pagan worship and requested that the temple be rebuilt. Juan Diego believed this apparition was Mary, and therefore he did as she commanded. To this day, people come here at this time of the year for the goddess’s blessing.

While most of us cannot travel to Mexico just to implore Tonatzin, there is nothing that says we can’t honor and invoke her at home. Light a candle or lamp and place before it a potted plant or bowl of soil. This configuration represents Tonatzin’s presence in your home throughout that day. From here she can illuminate the shadows and generate the light of hope and joy for all those who live there.

Carry a seed and some soil wrapped in a green cloth with you today. Name the seed after any earth quality you want to develop in your life, such as strong foundations or emotional stability. When you get home, put the seed and soil in a planter or your garden. Tonatzin’s magic is there to manifest growth for the seed and your spirit!

365 Goddess: A Daily Guide To the Magic and Inspiration of the goddess
Patricia Telesco

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Sunday: Do not get disappointed

Would you guess what planet is associated with this day? Easy, isn’t it? You can object that the Sun is not a planet. You are right. It is a star.

Do not get dissapointed that you are not meeting any god. For ancient cultures, the Sun and its daily cycle were crucial because their lives depended on its light and warmth making it possible to grow plants and get rid of the fear of the nightly shadows. Every morning, they were afraid the great gold sphere would not rise up in the heavens again. So the Sun was mostly understood as an incarnation of their most important deity and they were begging it with their prayers to come back the other day.

In many Romance languages, Sunday is called the Lord’s Day (Domingo in Spanish, dimanche in French, domenica in Italian: based on the Latin expression Dies Dominica) since this was the day when the God started his one week creation feast.

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Magickal Work for Sunday

 Health
 Abundance
 Leadership
 Strength
 Ambition
 Individuality
 Authority
 Hope
 Joy
 Happiness
 Creativity

–A Spell Crafter’s Compendium
Terri Paajanen

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Sunday’s Associations

Taking its name from our closet star, the Sun, Sunday is the best day of the week to work magical involving fathers and other authority figures such as your boss. It is also a good day to work on questions regarding leadership, money, prosperity, and power.

Color: Yellow, gold

Planet: Sun

Deities: Brighid, Helios, Ra, Apollo

Crystals: Quartz, diamond, amber, carnelian

Herbs: Marigold, sunflower, cinnamon

Associations: Success, promotion, fame, wealth, prosperity

–Flying the Hedge

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The Magickal Days of the Week — Sunday

In many traditions of Paganism, days of the week are very important aspects of effective spellcasting. For example, spells to do with abundance or prosperity could be done on Thursday, because it is associated with riches and desire. When casting a spell concerning business or communication, one might prefer to work on a Wednesday due to its associations.

While not all traditions follow this rule, when you’re doing any sort of magical working, always be sure to document the day of the week you’re performing the spell.

You might be surprised later on to see some connections!

Sunday Magical Correspondences

Sunday is associated with the colors yellow and gold, which shouldn’t be surprising – it’s the day of the sun, right? Because of this planetary association, this is a day that’s also connected to solar deities like Helios and Ra. Interestingly, in some Celtic traditions, Brighid’s day is Sunday as well.

When it comes to crystal use, Sunday is related to quartz crystals and diamonds, as well as the yellowish hues of carnelian and amber. For herbs and plants in magical workings, use marigolds, sunflowers or cinnamon.

What kind of magic is best performed on Sunday? Well, it’s a day that generally has a number of associations – agriculture, beauty, hope, victory, self-expression and creativity are all connected to this particular day. Plant or harvest something new (not just material crops, but metaphysical ones as well), create something from nothing, and prepare to win at everything.

Patti Wigington, Paganism/Wicca Expert
Article originally published on & owned by ThoughtCo.

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Sunday’s Witchery

Those ambitious, successful spells and charms will be heightened by working on the day of the week that has the planetary influence of the sun. So light those sunny candles, wear some luminous colors, and break out the gold jewelry! Bake up some cinnamon rolls or low-fat cinnamon muffins for an enchanting family breakfast. Take an orange with you to eat at lunch today. Try using a little magickal aromatherapy and burn some cinnamon-scented incense to encourage success and wealth today. Make the talisman to keep your solar magick with you. Sprinkle some dried marigold petals around your house-or across the threshold-to pull triumph and protection toward you and your family.

Get outside and tip up your face to the sun. Take a walk outside, and soak up some sunshine! Acknowledge the power of Sunna or Helios as they blaze across the sky and bring courage and motivation into your life. Sit outside at sunrise on a Sunday morning and bask in its warm, rosy-golden glow Acknowledge Brigid as the inner, creative spark of imagination and inspiration. She can help these gifts burn brightly within your own soul. Use your imagination and create your own brand of witchery and magick. Here comes the sun, and it’s your turn to shine!

—–Book of Witchery: Spells, Charms & Correspondences for Every Day of the Week
Ellen Dugan

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The Witches Almanac for Sunday, December 9

Anna’s Day (Sweden)

Waxing Moon

Moon phase: First Quarter

Moon Sign: Capricorn

Incense: Juniper

Color: Gold

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The Witches Correspondences for Sunday

Magickal Intentions: Growth, Advancements, Enlightment, Rational Thought, Exorcism, Healing, Prosperity, Hope, Exorcism, Money

Incense: Lemon, Frankincense

Planet: Sun

Sign: Leo

Angel: Michael

Colors: Gold, Yellow, Orange and White

Herbs/Plants: Marigold, Heliotrope, Sunflower, Buttercup, Cedar, Beech, Oak

Stones: Carnelian, Citrine, Tiger’s Eye, Amber, Clear Quartz and Red Agate

Oil: (Sun) Cedar, Frankincense, Neroli, Rosemary

The first day of the week is ruled by the Sun. It is an excellent time to work efforts involving business partnerships, work promotions, business ventures, and professional success. Spells where friendships, mental or physical health, or bringing joy back into life are an issue work well on this day, too.

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The Witches Magick for Sunday, December 9 – Spell for Banishing and Needed Changes

Sit in a quiet place that is special to you.

Hold a white or cream candle in your hands and visualize the area of your life that this candles energy is needed in. After you light this candle the energy will come to you. It may come right away or when you lease expect it. When you are ready recite the spell or use your own words of power.

This candle I see before me, its color so bright,
Holds my needs of change in its light.
I call in the forces higher than I
To release the energy that is held inside
May it work for me in the most correct way,
Harming none and helping all as it leaves my stay.
I call on thee in perfect trust and love sending me guidance from above.
This I make happen and so be it will.
Take away this thing that brings me ill.
So mote it be.3x3x3

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Moon Phase Calendar

Sunday, 9th of December 2018

Moon Phase: Waxing Crescent

Moon Currently in the Sign of Capricorn

Moon in Capricorn:
You might have a strong need for being useful to the society and you look for justification in the outside world. You may underestimate what you want from yourself and for yourself. Shyness may be accompanied by resentment of the fact that others ignore you. Do not seek approval from the outside, it will not help you get rid of your doubt and it is harmful to you. You have to trust your inner values.

Organs influenced by Capricorn Moon Sign:
Organs: Knees, joints, backbone, spinal muscles, patella, bones, tendons and ligaments, skin, hair, spleen, the organ of balance.

These organs are now more sensitive so provide them with extra care.
Surgical operations:
Surgical operations are not recommended during the Waxing Moon.

SOUTHERN HEMISPHERE

 

Today is Monday, December 10th

Monday is the sacred day of the moon, personified as the goddesses Selene, Luna, and Mani. The moon is ruler of flow, affecting the changeable and impressionable aspects of people. If a full moon falls on a Monday, then the powers of the moon are at their most potent.

Deity: Mani

Zodiac Sign: Cancer

Planet: Moon

Tree: Willow

Herb: Chickweed

Stone: Agate

Animal: Crab

Element: Water

Color: Green

Rune: Lagu (L)

 

Celtic Tree Month of Ruis (Elder) (November 25 – December 22)

The Runic Half Month of Is (November 28 – December 12)

Goddess of the Month of Astraea (November 28 – December 23)

—The Pagan Book of Days
Nigel Pennick

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The Goddess Book of Days for December 10th

Eskimo December Moon, to appease the souls of killed whales, for Sedna, Sea and Under- world Goddess. She is also Hecate, Cerridwen, Inanna, Erishkegal, Nephthys, Hel, Persephone, Brunhilde, Holde, Mother Holle, Oya, Rhiannon, Eurydice, Maman Brigette, and Baba Yaga.

Goddesses Associated with Monday, the Day of the Moon

Luna, Selene, Diana, Re, Gealach, Ida, Artemis, the Witches, Yemaya, Erzulie

The Goddess Book of Days
Diane Stein

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On Monday, December 10, We Celebrate…

Nobel Day (Various Locations)
SAMJNA

 

Themes: Knowledge; Learning; Excellence; Reason

Symbols: Walnut (the mind)

About Samjna: In Hindu tradition, this goddess is the source of all conscious thought and action. Her name even means “consciousness” and she is the patroness of learning, reason, logic, and knowledge.

To Do Today: Every year at this time, the Nobel Prize is awarded for mastery in chemistry, medicine, literature, and peace keeping. It is a time to revel in humankind’s achievements and limitless potential for good, motivated by Samjna’s gentle leadings.

To honor this goddess and the people who have achieved the pinnacle of what she represents, spend time enriching your mind today. For instance, you might read field manuals applicable to your career to advance your knowledge; watch educational television; go to a library, and perhaps donate to its shelves some old books that you no longer read; organize a local reading group for improved literary appreciation; or turn off the television and engage in intelligent conversation for mutual edification. The options here are limitless. For a Samjna charm that improves conscious awareness and your reasoning powers, carry a shelled walnut today. The shape of this nut equates to the mind. Eat this at the end of the day to internalize her power for thoughtful actions.

365 Goddess: A Daily Guide To the Magic and Inspiration of the goddess
Patricia Telesco

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Monday’s Magick

Monday – Is associated with the Moon

Colours – White, Silver, Grey and Pearl.

Monday is the best time to deal with such matters as: Psychic Pursuits, Psychology, Dreams, Astral Travel, Imagination, Women’s Mysteries, Reincarnation, Short Trips, Women, Children, Public, Domestic Concerns, Emotions, Fluids, Magick, Spirituality, Nursing, Full moon magic, Purity, Protection, Truth, Meditation, Peace, Sincerity, Justice, Warding off Doubts and Fears, Anything to do with Water and Bodies of Water, Antiques, Trip Planning, Household Activities, Initiation, Astrology, New-Age Pursuits, Archetypes, Totem Animals, Shape-shifting and Religious Experiences.

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Ritual Work Associated with Monday The Day of the Moon

Perfume: White Poppy, White Rose, Wallflower

Incense: Myrtle

Wood: Willow

Color: Silver, Grey-white

Influences: Agriculture, Domestic, Longlife, Medicine, Travels, Visions, Theft (new moon)

Reference:

A Book of Pagan Rituals
Herman Slater

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The Magickal Day of Monday

Monday is the day of the moon itself, and it’s a day that’s connected to lunar colors like silver, white, or even a pale blue. Metals and gemstones like silver, pearl, opal and moonstone all come into play today.

There are plenty of deities associated with the moon – Thoth and Diana for instance – and herbal correspondences include many members of the mint family. Utilize wintergreen or peppermint, as well as catnip, comfrey, sage and chamomile in your workings.

When it comes to Monday magic, because of that lunar connection, it’s a good time to focus on workings related to childbearing and family life, purity and virginity, healing, wisdom, and intuition. Do a little bit of self exploration and work on developing your intuition – learn to trust your gut. Celebrate birth and life, and make some magic to fix what is broken.

—Patti Wigington, Paganism/Wicca Expert
Article published on & owned by ThoughtCo

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Monday’s Witchery

Think for a moment on all of the witchery, magick and enchantments that you have discovered. Don’t be afraid to adjust spells to suit your own specific needs. Any gentle, illusory, and dreamy charms and spells can be enhanced when you work on the day of the week that is dedicated to the moon. Mondays are a fantastic day to boost your psychic abilities and to tune in to your intuition and empathy. It also gives you the opportunity to work with a different lunar phase each and every Monday, which means in one month you could work four different types of moon magicks on Mondays. How’s that for adding to your repertoire? You are going to have mad skills in no time at all.

So light up those lunar scented candles and add a little mystique to your outfit by wearing an enchanting lunar color. Wear your sparkling silver jewelry and maybe add a pair of dangling silver earrings or a pendant shaped like a crescent moon. Create lunar potions and philters; make a dream catcher and give it as a gift to someone you love. Burn some sandalwood or jasmine-scented incense today to inspire the glamour and magick of the moon. Slice up a favorite variety of fruit that is in season for a snack or share it with your love and enjoy his or her lunar and romantic qualities. Brew up a cup of chamomile tea, enchant it with a little moon magick, and relax and get a good night’s sleep.

Most importantly, get outside tonight and watch the moon for a while. What phase is she in? What color was the moon as she rose? Why not start a journal and write down at what location the moon rises and sets for a few seasons? This is a great way to teach you to tune in and to become more aware of the moon and the influence that she pulls into our lives. Try calling on Selene for her magickal assistance, and call Thoth for wisdom and strength. Get to know the Norse Mani and the Latvian Meness. These gods of the moon have plenty to teach, and if you allow their influence to cycle through your life, you’ll receive many blessings. Be imaginative, and create your own personal lunar magick and witchery. Go on….the moonlight becomes you

Book of Witchery: Spells, Charms & Correspondences for Every Day of the Week
Ellen Dugan

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The Witches Almanac for Monday, December 10

Hanukkah ends

Waxing Moon

Moon phase: First Quarter

Moon Sign: Capricorn

Moon enters Aquarius 6: 39 pm

Incense: Clary sage

Color: Lavender

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Correspondences for Monday, December 10

Day: Monday ( Moon-day)

Planet: Moon

Colors: Silver and White and Grey

Crystals: Moonstone, Pearl, Aquamarine, Silver, Selenite

Aroma: Jasmine, Lemon, Sandalwood, Moon Oil, African violet, Honeysuckle, Myrtle, Willow, and Wormwood

Herb: Moonwart

The sacred day of the Moon, personified by such goddesses as Selene, Luna, Diana, and Artemis. The Moon is ruler of flow affecting the changeable aspects of people. If a full moon falls on a Monday, its powers are at their most potent. Magical aspects: peace, sleep, healing, compassion, friendships, psychic awareness, purification, and fertility

Monday is ruled by the moon – an ancient symbol of mystery and peace. Monday is a special day for mothers as the cycle of the moon has long been associated with the female menstrual cycle. Those wishing to conceive a baby would be wise to try on a Monday as the magic of motherhood is strong and pregnancy is in the air.

This is the proper day of the week to perform spells and rituals involving agriculture, animals, female fertility, messages, reconciliation’s, theft, voyages, dreams, emotions, clairvoyance, home, family, medicine, cooking, personality, merchandising, psychic work, Faerie magic, and Goddess rituals.

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The Witches Magick for Monday, December 10 – A Money Ritual to Invite Prosperity in Your Life

This isn’t some “get-rich-quick” spell.

Items You WIll Need
Green candle
Bay Leaves
Plain white piece of paper

I usually have some other candles around and sometimes will also use some of the essential oils that I know draw in money. Think of the amount of money that is needed, not what is wanted.

Asking for a million dollars is absolutely ridiculous to say the least. Write down the amount that you know you need to help you achieve your goals (paying bills, paying for college, camp fees, whatever) on the plain, white piece of paper. Fold the paper in half three times. After getting a connection with your goddess, light your green candle. Use your own incantation to ask the Goddess for her help and guidance to find the money that you need. Place the paper under the candle.

Now close your eyes and see money coming to you. Don’t think of how it comes, just see it come. See it appear in your hand or maybe imagine it flying around you like in those money booth games and see yourself snatching it out of the air. While doing this, I burn a bay leaf in the candles flame. Inhale the fragrance emitted by the bay leaf. If you have money-drawing oils, then a few drops on the sides of the candle can be placed as you give thanks to the Goddess for listening to you.

Close as you feel appropriate. Leave it all set up when you finish if you are able and repeat. Start it on the new moon and repeat several times until the full moon. At this point, burn the paper and spread it’s ashes to the wind.


Let’s Talk Meditation

Find a quiet space where you will be undisturbed. If you have an altar, that’s an ideal spot.

Seat yourself comfortably. You may wish to assume the Lotus position, sitting on a cushion on the floor with your legs crossed, pelvis tilted forward, shoulders back, and spine straight.

If sitting on the floor is painful or uncomfortable, sit in a chair with your feet flat on the floor, your spine straight, and your hands on your knees.

Close your eyes and breathe deeply.

As you breathe, feel your body relaxing completely.

Check in with your body, turning your attention first to your feet, then to your ankles, to your shins, and so on up to the top of your head. Feel each part of your body relaxing with your breath.

If a part of you contains built-up tension, simply accept that it is there and continue breathing.

At this point, you may begin doing a visualization exercise, or you may move into a deep, meditative state. Let’s move into a deeper meditative state.

Continue breathing. Focus all your consciousness on your breath.

Do not try to control your breathing. Simply let your body do what it does naturally.

Thoughts will come into your head. Let them come, and let them go.

Return your awareness to your breathing.

Continue breathing in and breathing out.

Repeat the last three steps again and again.

After you have done this for a while, you will reach a place inside of yourself that is beyond words.

Tips:

Don’t get discouraged! Meditation is harder than it sounds. Be gentle with yourself and do what you can do today.

Meditation gets easier with practice. Try to meditate every day, even if it is just for five minutes. The longer you can sit, the deeper you can go.

Meditation is like listening to God/dess. But in order to listen, you first must still your own mind so that you can hear what S/He has to say. Have faith that S/He is there, waiting to speak to you.

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Basic Meditation Techniques

by Bill Witt

The course is divided into three sections. Section one deals with what meditation is and how it plays a part in the lives of those who use it. Section two will go into the techniques and tools of meditation. Section three gives suggestions on how to use what you’ve learned, in everyday life. A list of books for further reading on the subject, will be given at the end of section three.

Webster defines meditation as “The act of meditating; close or continued thought; the revolving of a subject in the mind.”

To meditate is to focus mentally on one thought, idea, or concept. It may also mean, to revolve an idea in your mind so as to change the way in which you think of that idea. Meditation is therefore, a tool with which you may manipulate thought in an organized manner.

Many people view meditation as a very difficult thing to learn. In reality though, we do it often without even knowing it. When you daydream or find your mind fixed on one thought, that is a form of meditation. Have you ever watched a bird in flight, or stared up at the clouds in the sky, or maybe even found yourself watching a stream of water flow by? If you have and at that moment the rest of the world around you has seemed removed, then you were in a state of meditation. The real key to this practice, is to be able to exercise control over your thoughts and awareness of the world around you.

There are many groups of people for whom meditation is an everyday ritual. Others use it at special times as a means of relaxation and “mental house cleaning.” It allows the individual a freedom unlike no other freedom. The freedom to look inside oneself and learn just who you are. Some use it as a way of being closer to nature or God. No matter how you wish to use it, you will find it a healthy and very rewarding experience.

Most all religions practice meditation in one way or another. Eastern philosophies such as Yoga, and Buddhism are not the only ones to view meditation as a way of looking for the Truth found in one’s own consciousness. Even in Christianity meditation finds a place of value. The Bible itself mentions the value of meditation. In writing to the Philippians, the Apostle Paul tells them this. “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” (Phil. 4.8)

So you ask,what can it do for me. Well, beyond just being a good way to really relax, which we can all use in this hectic world, it can be a doorway to the Truth inside yourself. It is a way of gaining wisdom. Knowledge has always been fairly easy to come by. Wisdom on the other hand, is a bit harder to grasp onto.

In “The Task” by William Cowper, the following line is found. “Knowledge dwells in heads replete with thoughts of other men: Wisdom, in minds attentive to their own.”

For me, mediation becomes a way of “grounding” myself, of reaching a place of peace and stability, where I can find how I fit into the universe.

In many philosophies, mediation is viewed as a necessary skill. All those who are students of these philosophies must learn the ways of mediation early in their training. Although the techniques may vary from one group to another, the most basic concepts remain the same. The ability to be able to focus on one thought and selectively block out all others is the foundation upon which many more advanced skills will be built. These skills may range from telepathy to the ability to move objects with only the mind.

It is well known that Yogi adepts can lower their breathing and heart rates to near death levels. This is something you should not try as it takes years of practice to learn and can be quite dangerous. Still, these yogis are proof of the type of power the mind can exercise over the body through meditation.

In some cultures, the use of drugs to achieve a meditative state is encouraged. The American Indians for example, used drugs derived from various plants to put themselves into an altered state of consciousness. This was usually done as a religious practice and as an event marking the change from one state of life to another. A good example would be the ceremony marking the coming into manhood of a young boy. Today there are still many, who advocate the use of drugs to achieve these altered states. It is my opinion that such measures are neither necessary nor good. You can reach an altered state of consciousness without the use of drug induced “highs”. It takes practice, but it can be done.

In New Age philosophy, the art of meditaion is highly valued. We also find another well developed skill which is called “creative visualization”. This is the idea of visualising what you want to the point of it becoming reality. A good example would be a salesman visualizing himself as successful and prosperous. The concept is simple, if you can visualize a personal reality, you can change or bring that reality into being. “Positive Thinking” is a very similar idea. The technique of creative visualization goes beyond positive thinking however. It deals with the premise that we all create our own reality and therefore have the power to change many aspects of that reality. The idea of “personal reality” is a lengthy one and we do not have enough room to cover it in this course.

So far we have looked briefly at what meditation is and how it is used. By no means have we touched on all the aspects of this practice. There are many books on the subject which cover it in much more detail. My purpose is to give you an overview of the many facets of meditation in the hope that you will wish to learn more.

BASIC MEDITATION TECHNIQUES

This is the second part of a three part online course in Basic Meditation Techniques

The course is divided into three sections. Section one deals with what meditation is and how it plays a part in the lives of those who use it. Section two will go into the techniques and tools of meditation. Section three gives suggestions on how to use what you’ve learned, in everyday life. A list of books for further reading on the subject, will be given at the end of section three.

In this second section of the “Basic Meditation Techniques” course, we will discuss various relaxation procedures and how they will aid you in entering a trance or meditative state. You will also be given some ideas about types of music and other “tools” which can help you achieve these relaxed states of mind. Let’s begin.

First, let’s set the stage for our meditation practice. You should pick a place which is as private and safe as possible. An altered state of mind, as in meditation, lessens your awareness of the outside world. For this reason, it is not advisable to practice these techniques in a public place where there is a chance of being mugged, robbed, or molested. If you are at home, with other family members or friends present, ask that you not be disturbed and that all other noise in the house be kept to a minimum. When you have found a place suitable for meditation, you may begin.

“The seekers of new mind states-the mind control devotees, the encounter group enthusiasts, the drug takers, the psychics, the mediators – all are on a journey into the interior universe trying to burst the limits of the socially conditioned mind. Whether acceptable or unacceptable, moral or immoral, wise or foolish, the mind of man is stirring toward a new evolution.” Dr. Barbara Brown (1)

As I said in section one,trance or mediative states,alter the way your mind deals with the realities it accepts as normal. Things which are experienced in a trance state are often not easily expressed in everyday language. You will at some level, experience a heightened state of awareness. Colors, smells, and sounds may seem amplified from what they normally are.

People who can achieve very deep states of trance often leave their bodies in astral projection, or have psychic experiences.

I highly recommend, that if you wish to enter deep states of meditation, you do so under the guidance and teaching of someone who is well trained in the practice of such techniques. The key thing to remember is that it’s not what level your working on as much as what you are learning. There is alot to be gained in wisdom and knowledge at all levels of trance.

Now let’s learn some simple and useful relaxation exercises.

You want to be sure that the time you pick to practice your meditation is a time when you are least likely to be disturbed. You should not be overly tired or have just finished eating as both of those conditions may cause you to fall asleep. Even though you wish to achieve an altered state of consciousness, you do want to remain conscious to some degree. If you fall asleep when you are meditating, no harm is done and you will awaken quite refreshed and rested. Unfortunately though, you may not be able to recall all the things you experienced while in trance.

If you are lying down, be sure your back and neck are properly supported so as not to fatigue the body. If you are sitting, be sure that both feet are flat on the floor and that you are sitting as erect as possible without being too stiff or strained. You should have your arms resting comfortably in your lap with palms up.

In either case, it is important that your body not become strained or fatigued for at least thirty minutes. This is a good length of time to begin with as it should put neither a physical or mental strain on your being.

Next, visualize a yourself in a cocoon of white light. You should surround yourself completely. See the light as bright and warm. You may play with this sphere of light making it bigger or smaller until it “feels” right for you. Say to yourself, “I am protected by the pure white light of all that is good and truthful. I am surrounded by the pure light which keeps out all unwanted and evil influences.”

This is a good idea to do for several reasons.There are those, and I am one of them, who believe that each of generates an aura which protects us from outside influences when we are in trance. This aura may be strengthened by visualizing the light as growing brighter at our command. Even if you do not accept this idea, the practice lends a feeling of safety and security to you. Nothing which is outside of you may enter or touch you without your permission.

Learning to control and pay attention to your breathing is the next step. You should start by taking a deep breath in through your nose, hold it for the mental count of 4 and then let it all out slowly through your mouth. Repeat this until you begin to feel at rest and relaxed. Allow your breathing to settle into a steady, rythmic rate. Just this simple technique can relax and refresh you at any time. When you are only doing the breathing exercise, it is not necessary to go through the white light sphere visualization. Some people use a muffled metronome or recording of some other rhythmic sound, such as ocean waves, to aid them in setting the pace of their breathing. A good source of recorded sounds which can help you in meditation is a series of records and tapes which have been produced under the title “ENVIRONMENTS”.

Now, as you are breathing,see yourself lying in the warm light of the sun. The light is warm and pleasant to be in. Starting with the tips of your toes, feel the light warming all of your body, slowly moving up into your legs, your trunk, and then into your arms and fingers. As you feel this warming become more and more relaxed, going deeper and deeper into a calm and quiet place.

When you fell totally relaxed and at peace, bring a single thought into your mind. It should be of a pleasant experience or of an idea such as love, joy, peace, or compassion. Focus on this one thought and if some other thought should try to intrude, picture it as being written on a clear board between you and your focal thought. Then picture it being erased from that board as it might be from a piece of paper. Deal with any thought, other than your focal thought, quickly. Try to maintain concentration on your focal thought for at least five minutes. Picture it as being real and experience it as if it were. When you are able to do this and can exclude all other thoughts as they attempt to enter your mind, you will have learned the single most important technique of meditation.

It is now time to begin coming back to normal consciousness. Slowly let the thought fade from your mind and again become aware of the warm light of the sun. As you fell the light bathing you in its’ warmth, start to reconnect your mind with the physical sensations of your body. Become aware of your breathing and the room around you. Do this slowly and calmly. When you are fully aware of your surroundings, open your eyes slowly. Enjoy the sense of calm and peace.

If you succeeded in doing this exercise, you should feel more relaxed and calm than normal. It is important to remember that you are comparing it to normal for you, not to what you think others would or should feel.

If you do not feel you succeeded try again in a day or two. Between meditaion sessions, practice your deep breathing exercises. If you keep trying, you will soon reach a calm and meditative state. Do not attempt to meditate when you are ill, tired, or hungry. Those feelings only serve to make your efforts more difficult. A very important part to remember is that you can not force yourself into a meditative state. You must flow into it and surrender to it calmly.

Some things which are found to be helpful in meditation follow.

Try concentrating on the flame of a candle when focusing. You could also use a crystal ball. The later is rather expensive but small crystal window ornaments or pyramids also work well and cost much less.

Music is also an aid to some. The music should be quiet and rhythmic. It should bring on feelings of peace and comfort. Such music may range from New Age recordings to classical.

Another useful device is to focus on a symbol which holds special meaning for you. It may be an well known symbol or one you design yourself. As long as it holds a special meaning or expresses a special concept, it is a useful focusing tool.

This brings section two of this course to a close. In the next part I will give you some practical ways in which to use what you have learned.

The most obvious use of the techniques you have learned, is relaxation. During the course of the day, many of us have moments when the pressure becomes almost to much. When this happens, we often can’t deal with other people or projects the way we should. The breathing exercises you learned in section two can help at these times.

It doesn’t require a lot of time or absolute quiet as does your meditation practice. All that is required is about five minutes and relative privacy. At these times, begin doing your rhythmic breathing and visualize a place which is calm and refreshing. This simple and quick exercise, can work wonders to help you regain control in a hectic situation.

Another way in which meditation is used is in the development of psychic powers. There are several books on the subject, listed at the end of this section. Most of those who teach about the use and development of these abilities, agree that meditation is necessary to any such study. Again the reason for this is that meditation allows you to reach an altered state of consciousness. In this altered state your mind is more open to such phenomenon as telepathy. If you should decide to peruse studies in this direction, please seek the help of someone trained in these areas.

One final use I will suggest is visualization. Meditation can be used as a tool for problem solving. While in a meditative state of mind, you have the ability to take any situation and manipulate it. By that I mean you can mentally play the out the situation using several different solutions. Then, you can pick the one which seems to best solve the problem. While the use of meditation can help you deal with problem solving more effectively, it is not infallible. All it can do is allow you to think more clearly and concisely about the problem at hand.

Well that concludes this study on meditation. I hope you have gained something useful from this course. It has been by no means, a full explanation of the subject. There is much more to learn than could be covered in this short series and It is my hope that you will want to continue your studies into this fascinating and useful skill.

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Spirit Message of the Moment – Time to Celebrate Litha

An Ancient Solar Celebration

“Nearly every agricultural society has marked the high point of summer in some way, shape or form. On this date – usually around June 21 or 22 (or December 21/22 in the southern hemisphere) – the sun reaches its zenith in the sky. It is the longest day of the year, and the point at which the sun seems to just hang there without moving – in fact, the word “solstice” is from the Latin word solstitium, which literally translates to “sun stands still.” The travels of the sun were marked and recorded. Stone circles such as Stonehenge were oriented to highlight the rising of the sun on the day of the summer solstice.

Traveling the Heavens
Although few primary sources are available detailing the practices of the ancient Celts, some information can be found in the chronicles kept by early Christian monks. Some of these writings, combined with surviving folklore, indicate that Midsummer was celebrated with hilltop bonfires and that it was a time to honor the space between earth and the heavens.

Fire and Water
In addition to the polarity between land and sky, Litha is a time to find a balance between fire and water. According to Ceisiwr Serith, in his book The Pagan Family, European traditions celebrated this time of year by setting large wheels on fire and then rolling them down a hill into a body of water. He suggests that this may be because this is when the sun is at its strongest yet also the day at which it begins to weaken. Another possibility is that the water mitigates the heat of the sun, and subordinating the sun wheel to water may prevent drought.

Saxon Traditions
When they arrived in the British Isles, the Saxon invaders brought with them the tradition of calling the month of June Aerra Litha. They marked Midsummer with huge bonfires that celebrated the power of the sun over darkness. For people in Scandinavian countries and in the farther reaches of the Northern hemisphere, Midsummer was very important. The nearly endless hours of light in June are a happy contrast to the constant darkness found six months later in the middle of winter.

Roman Festivals
The Romans, who had a festival for anything and everything, celebrated this time as sacred to Juno, the wife of Jupiter and goddess of women and childbirth. She is also called Juno Luna and blesses women with the privilege of menstruation. The month of June was named for her, and because Juno was the patroness of marriage, her month remains an ever-popular time for weddings. This time of year was also sacred to Vesta, goddess of the hearth. The matrons of Rome entered her temple on Midsummer and made offerings of salted meal for eight days, in hopes that she would confer her blessings upon their homes.

Midsummer for Modern Pagans
Litha has often been a source of contention among modern Pagan and Wiccan groups, because there’s always been a question about whether or not Midsummer was truly celebrated by the ancients. While there’s scholarly evidence to indicate that it was indeed observed, there were suggestions made by Gerald Gardner, the founder of modern Wicca, that the solar festivals (the solstices and equinoxes) were actually added later and imported from the Middle East. Regardless of the origins, many modern Wiccans and Pagans do choose to celebrate Litha every year in June.

In some traditions, Litha is a time at which there is a battle between light and dark. The Oak King is seen as the ruler of the year between winter solstice and summer solstice, and the Holly King from summer to winter. At each solstice they battle for power, and while the Oak King may be in charge of things at the beginning of June, by the end of Midsummer he is defeated by the Holly King. This is a time of year of brightness and warmth. Crops are growing in their fields with the heat of the sun, but may require water to keep them alive. The power of the sun at Midsummer is at its most potent, and the earth is fertile with the bounty of growing life.

For contemporary Wiccans and Pagans, this is a day of inner power and brightness. Find yourself a quiet spot and meditate on the darkness and the light both in the world and in your personal life. Celebrate the turning of the Wheel of the Year with fire and water, night and day, and other symbols of the triumph of light over darkness.

Litha is a great time to celebrate outdoors if you have children. Take them swimming or just turn on the sprinkler to run through, and then have a bonfire or barbeque at the end of the day. Let them stay up late to say goodnight to the sun, and celebrate nightfall with sparklers, storytelling, and music. This is also an ideal Sabbat to do some love magic or celebrate a handfasting, since June is the month of marriages and family.”

Excerpts from Patti Wigington, ThhoughtCo

Spiritblogger’s Blog

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Spirit Message of the Day – Winter Solstice – Spirit of Warmth

YULETIDE & WINTER SOLSTICE
Monday, December 21st, marks the day of Yule. Also known as midwinter, Winter Solstice. This is the longest night of the year and is the time when the Goddess gives birth to the new spark of hope; the light of the world which was conceived during the rites of Ostara.

The season is for celebrating the rebirth of the sun. The Sun God, who dies at Samhain, is reborn from the Maiden aspect of the Pagan holy trinity: Maiden, Mother, and Crone. On the Winter Solstice, longest night, the Goddess gives birth to the Sun Child when hope for new light is born. The notion of hoping the light returns may seem a bit strange in modern times, but the originators of these traditions did not have the scientific sophistication of contemporary times. The waxing and waning of sunlight was a mystery.

This is one of three holy days that feels supremely comfortable to Pagans because they are celebrated by the culture at large with many of the Pagan customs and conventions in place. Practices such as gift giving, tree decorating, the hanging of greenery, kissing under the mistletoe and the burning of a Yule log are all unmistakably Pagan. The old Pagan ways are the template over which some religious traditions have laid claims to the season. The most common tradition still in existence from times of old is probably the Yule tree including the stringing of rosebuds, cinnamon sticks, and popcorn garlands, use for keeping the wood spirits warm during the cold winter months. Bells were hung in the limbs so they would ring with spirits passed by.
–Excerpt taken from author Gretchen Raisch-Baskin

“Dance and Sing the Birth of Sun,
For Holly’s reign is gone and done.
‘Tis from this death rebirth we heed
as bread is found from grinding seed.
So, look within for grain to grind.
May peace and joy be all you find.”
–Raven’s Wing

The Winter Solstice: The Unconquered Sun

At the Winter Solstice, we celebrate Children’s Day to honour our children and to bring warmth, light and cheerfulness into the dark time of the year. Holidays such as this have their origin as “holy days”. They are the way human beings mark the sacred times in the yearly cycle of life.

In the northern latitudes, midwinter’s day has been an important time for celebration throughout the ages. On this shortest day of the year, the sun is at its lowest and weakest, a pivot point from which the light will grow stronger and brighter. This is the turning point of the year. The romans called it Dies Natalis Invicti Solis, the Birthday of the Unconquered Sun.

The Roman midwinter holiday, Saturnalia, was both a gigantic fair and a festival of the home. Riotous merry-making took place, and the halls of houses were decked with boughs of laurel and evergreen trees. Lamps were kept burning to ward off the spirits of darkness. Schools were closed, the army rested, and no criminals were executed. Friends visited one another, bringing good-luck gifts of fruit, cakes, candles, dolls, jewellery, and incense. Temples were decorated with evergreens symbolizing life’s continuity, and processions of people with masked or blackened faces and fantastic hats danced through the streets.

The custom of mummers visiting their neighbours in costume, which is still alive in Newfoundland, is descended from these masked processions.

Roman masters feasted with slaves, who were given the freedom to do and say what they liked (the medieval custom of all the inhabitants of the manor, including servants and lords alike, sitting down together for a great Christmas feast, came from this tradition). A Mock King was appointed to take charge of the revels (the Lord of Misrule of medieval Christmas festivities had his origin here).

In pagan Scandinavia the winter festival was the yule (or juul). Great yule logs were burned, and people drank mead around the bonfires listening to minstrel-poets singing ancient legends. It was believed that the yule log had the magical effect of helping the sun to shine more brightly.

Mistletoe, which was sacred because it mysteriously grew on the most sacred tree, the oak, was ceremoniously cut and a spray given to each family, to be hung in the doorways as good luck. The celtic Druids also regarded mistletoe as sacred. Druid priests cut it from the tree on which it grew with a golden sickle and handed it to the people, calling it All-Heal. To hang it over a doorway or in a room was to offer goodwill to visitors. Kissing under the mistletoe was a pledge of friendship. Mistletoe is still forbidden in most Christian churches because of its Pagan associations, but it has continued to have a special place in home celebrations.

In the third century various dates, from December to April, were celebrated by Christians as Christmas. January 6 was the most favoured day because it was thought to be Jesus’ baptismal day (in the Greek Orthodox Church this continues to be the day to celebrate Christmas). Around 350, December 25 was adopted in Rome and gradually almost the entire Christian Church agreed to that date, which coincided with Winter Solstice, the Yule and the Saturnalia. The merry side of Saturnalia was adopted to the observance of Christmas. By 1100 Christmas was the peak celebration of the year for all of Europe. During the 16th century, under the influence of the Reformation, many of the old customs were suppressed and the Church forbade processions, colourful ceremonies, and plays.

In 1647 in England, Parliament passed a law abolishing Christmas altogether. When Charles II came to the throne, many of the customs were revived, but the feasting and merrymaking were now more worldly than religious.

Here in Nova Scotia outdoor coloured lights play an important part in the local celebration of the mid-winter season. With the day turning to darkness so early in the North, it is cheering to look out into the cold and dark at lights sparkling and glittering in the crisp air.

Our celebration of Children’s Day is inspired not only by the pagan celebrations of mid-winter but arises also out of the Japanese holidays of Boy’s Day and Doll’s Day, which are two separate days in the spring, when boys and girls of a certain age are presented to the temple and honoured with special gifts. The Shambhala Children’s shrine is modeled after the display of ancestral dolls traditional in homes on Doll’s Day.Our sangha is our village, our clan, our family. Our children belong to all of us, and are bright reminders of the future of Buddhism. We celebrate them and the Great Eastern Sun together at the darkest time of the year, with open-hearth parties and cheerful festivities.

The Unconquered Sun first appeared as an article by Janet Shotwell in The Karma Dzong Banner (Vol III, No 11, December 1991, Halifax, Nova Scotia).
Spiritblogger’s Blog

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Witchy Tip #101 for December 9 – 10

If you need an energy cleansing real quick this is a simple spell to do the trick:

Light a black candle, wait until the flame is at its peak. Then take a white candle and light it with the black candle until the white candle’s flame is larger than the black candle’s. Then, verbalized or think of the negative energy leaving you and blow the black candle out.

You should notice a difference in the energy by the next morning!

Witch Tips : The Essential Guide to Contemporary Witchcraft
A. Rayne

“Walk barefoot, listen to the wind, drink in the moon…. BE MAGICK”

 

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Enjoy the Daily Journal, help support it by visiting our store, Magickal Necessities. All sales for the store goes to support the WOTC and all its operations. Current Yule Special 15% discount on your final purchase price. Plus a Blow Out Sale on all our Jar Candles, everything from Love to Return to Sender Jar Candles, price drastically slashed.

 

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