The Witches Of The Craft’s Journal for Friday, September 23rd

mabon-god

“Hear us, Son of Two Mothers, Blessed Dionysus, God of Wine,
Lysian, Evion Bacchus, Many-named, secret and holy, fertile and nourishing,
Who brings the spark of life and makes the fruits to flourish and increase,

Resounding, Magnanimous Power, Many-Formed God of Health, Holy Flower,
Mortals find repose from labor in Your magic, and You are desired by all.
Fair, Bromian, Joyful God who bears the vined wand
Incline to these rites, Whether You favor Gods or mortals,
Be welcome and listen as Your mystics pray,
And come rejoicing, bearing abundant fruits.” Dionysos! Dionysos!
He is sweet upon the mountains.
He drops to the earth from the running packs.
He wears the holy-fawn-skin.
He hunts the wild goat and kills it.
He delights in the raw flesh.
He runs to the mountains of Phrygia, to the mountains of Lydia he runs!
He is Bromios who leads us!
Evohe!

With milk the earth flows!
It flows with wine!
It runs with the nectar of bees!
Like frankincense in its fragrance is the blaze of the torch he bears.
Flames float out from his trailing wand
as he runs, as he dances,
kindling the stragglers,
spurring with cries,
and his long curls stream to the wind!
And he cries as they cry:
Evohe!

Blessed, blessed are those who know the mysteries of the god.
Blessed is he who hallows his life in the worship of the god.
Blessed is he whom the spirit of the god possesses,
who is one with those who belong to the holy body of the god.

Blessed are the dancers and those who are purified,
who dance on the hill in the holy dance of the god.
Blessed are they who keep the rite of Kybele the Mother.
Blessed are the thrysus-bearers,
those who wield in their hands the holy wand of the god.
Blessed are those who wear the crown of the ivy of the god.

Blessed, blessed are they: Dionysos is their god!”

– Dionysos Autumn Equinox

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Daily Moon & Sun Data for Friday, September 23rd

The Sun
Sun Direction: ↑ 117.01° ESE
Sun Altitude: 30.46°
Sun Distance: 93.257 million mi
Next Solstice: Dec 21, 2016 4:44 AM (Winter)
Sunrise Today: 6:43 AM↑ 90° East
Sunset Today: 6:49 PM↑ 270° West
Length of Daylight: 12 hours, 5 minutes

The Moon
Moon Direction: ↑ 250.79° WSW
Moon Altitude: 51.72°
Moon Distance: 233179 mi
Next New Moon: Sep 30, 20167:11 PM
Next Full Moon: Oct 15, 201611:23 PM
Next Moonset: Today2:05 PM
Current Moon Phase: Waning Crescent
Illumination:48.0%

Reference

timeanddate.com

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The Sky This Week – for September 23 to September 25

An unobstructed view of Venus, the Summer Triangle still prominent, and other awesome things to look for in the sky this week.
By Richard Talcott

Friday, September 23

Last Quarter Moon occurs at 5:56 a.m. EDT. It rises around midnight local daylight time this morning, which gives North American observers a chance to see it almost precisely half-lit. Earth’s only natural satellite appears among the background stars of northern Orion, approximately 10° north of the red supergiant star Betelgeuse.

Saturday, September 24

Uranus reaches opposition three weeks from today, but it already has become a tempting evening target. The ice giant world rises before twilight ends and climbs nearly 40° above the eastern horizon by 11 p.m. local daylight time. The magnitude 5.7 planet lies in Pisces, 2.4° north-northwest of magnitude 4.8 Mu (m) Piscium. Although Uranus is bright enough to see with the naked eye under a dark sky, binoculars make the task much easier. A telescope reveals the planet’s blue-green disk, which spans 3.7″.
Sunday, September 25
Saturn remains a gorgeous sight in the evening sky all week. It stands some 20° high in the southwest as twilight fades to darkness and doesn’t set until after 10 p.m. local daylight time. The ringed world resides among the background stars of southwestern Ophiuchus, just 6° north of Antares, the brightest star in neighboring Scorpius. The yellow-hued planet shines at magnitude 0.5 and appears significantly brighter than the ruddy star. When viewed through a telescope, Saturn shows a 16″-diameter disk surrounded by a dramatic ring system that spans 36″ and tilts 24° to our line of sight.

Reference:

Astronomy Magazine

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Spells & Ritual Work Pertaining to Fridays

Lust

Romance

Happiness

Travel

Friends

Beauty

Sexuality

Harmony

Growth

Planet: Venus

Colors: Pink, Aqua, Seafoam

Crystals: Coral, Emerald, Rose Quartz

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Today is Friday, September 23, We Celebrate….

Libra Begins (Various Locations)
TULA

Themes: Balance; Justice; Peace
Symbols: Scales; Balanced Items
About Tula: This Hindu goddess is represented by the constellation Libra, her name even meaning “balance.” In all things, Tula teaches us how to harmonize the diverse nature of our hectic lives and reintegrate goddess-centered ideology within that framework.
To Do Today: People born under the sign of Libra seem to integrate Tula’s characteristics of harmony and balance, especially in aesthetic sense. They cultivate relationships carefully and enjoy fighting for just causes. When those of us not born under this sign would like to do similarly, we can call on Tula for aid. Stand on the bathroom scale first thing in the morning and invoke her, saying,
Tula, instill in me a growing sense of harmony.
Between sound and silence let serenity dance;
between the shadow and the light, let peace prance.
Where’er injustice dwells, let equity swell;
in my heart, in my life, bring an end to all strife
Afterward, try to dress in balanced tones of clothing (like a white shirt and black pants) and spend the rest of the day monitoring your personal balance—your sense of equilibrium—maintaining your temper, pacing your steps, being aware of your center of gravity. In all these things, Tula’s equitable energy abides.

Reference

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

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Friday, September 23

Friday is the day of Venus. It takes it name from Frigg, the Goddess of love and transformation. She rules the spiritual side of a person that manifests in the physical. Because of this, Friday is often thought of as dangerously unpredictable. This is expressed in an old East Anglian adage:

Friday’s day will have its trick
The fairest or foulest day of the week.

Deity: Frigg

Zodiac Sign: Taurus/Libra

Planet: Venus

Tree: Apple

Herb: Vervain

Stone: Sapphire/Chrsolite

Animal: Bull/Serpent

Element: Earth

Color: Yellow/Violet

Number: 7

Rune: Peorth(P)

Celtic Tree Month of Muin (Vine) – September 2 through September 29

The Runic Half Month of Ken (illumination) – September 13 through September 27

Goddess of the Month of Hesperis – August 9 – September 5

Source

The Pagan Book of Days
Nigel Pennick

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The Goddess Book of Days for Friday, September 23

Astrological beginning of the Sign of Libra, dedicated to Ishtar, Semitic Great Goddess. The Eleusinian Mysteries, the ninth (last) day, Plemo Choai, earthen vessels representing the womb of Demeter, the pourings of plenty. In Finland, Day of Mielikki, protector of animals.

Reference

The Goddess Book of Days
Diane Stein

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The Witches Guide to Friday

Ruler: Freya, Venus

Colors: Emerald green or pink

Power Hours: Sunrise and the 8th, 16th, and 24th hours following.

Key Words: Love, money, health

It is easy to spot the ruler of this day by its name. In the word Friday, we see the roots of the name of the Norse goddess Freya, a goddess of love and fertility, and the most beautiful and propitious of the goddesses thus the verse “Friday’s child is loving and giving.”

In Spanish this day of the week is called Viernes and is derived from the goddess Venus. Matters of love, human interaction, the fluidity of communication, sewing and the creation of artistic garments, household improvement, shopping, and party planning all fall under the aspects of Friday and its ruling planet, Venus.

Friday’s angels are Ariel/Uriel, Rachiel, and Sachiel. Rachiel also concerns himself with human sexuality and is a presiding spirit of the planet Venus.

On Fridays, the hour of sunrise and every eight hours after that are also ruled by Venus, and that makes these times of the day doubly blessed. These four hours are the strongest four hours for conducting ritual.

Check the local newspaper, astrological calendar, or almanac to determine your local sunrise.

Reference

Gypsy Magic

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The Magick of Fridays

Friday falls at the end of the work week for many of us, and that means we get a chance to relax for a little bit! Mark your Fridays with colors like pink and aqua, and metals such as copper. This is a day ruled by the planet Venus, so it should be no surprise that Venus and Aphrodite – goddesses of love and beauty – are associated with Fridays. This is a day named for the Norse goddess Freyja, so be sure to take a moment to honor her as well.

Gemstones associated with Friday include coral, emerald and rose quartz, and plants like strawberries, apple blossoms and feverfew are also related. This is a good day to do spellwork associated with family life and fertility, sexuality, harmony, friendship, growth. Take advantage of Friday’s correspondences and plant a seed, make something grow, and enjoy your blessings

*Note: There are a lot of disputes as to the origins of the word Friday, because there is still a great deal of discussion as to whether it was named for Freyja or Frigga, and whether they were the same deity or two separate ones. Some scholars believe that while they may have eventually become two distinctly different goddesses, they could have had their origins in a single, common Proto-Germanic deity.

Author

Patti Wigington, Paganism/Wicca Expert
Article published on & owned by About.com

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The Witches Almanac for Friday, September 22nd

Shubun no Hi (Chinese)

Waning Moon
Fourth Quarter 5:56 am
Moon Sign: Gemini
Moon enters Cancer 4:33 am
Incense: Thyme
Color: Rose

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The Witches Correspondences for Friday, September 23

The day of Venus, Friday takes its name from Frigga, the Goddess of Love and Transformation. She rules the spiritual aspects of people as they manifest on the physical. because of this, Friday is sometimes thought of as unpredictable.
Element : Water / Earth
Planet: Venus
Zodiac Sign : Taurus / Libra
Angel : Ariel
Metal : Tin
Incense / Perfumes : Strawberry, Sandalwood, Rose, Saffron and Vanilla
Oils : Cardamom, Palmrosa, Rose, Yarrow
Color : Green, Aqua, Rose
Stones : Emerald, Rose Quartz, Moonstone, Pink Tourmaline, Peridot, Jade
Plants/Herbs : Apple, Balm of Gilead, Bergamot, Birch, Catnip, Clematis, Damiana, Dragons Blood, Geranium, Heather, Hibiscus, Ivy, Magnolia, Mugwort, Plumeria, Rose, Rose Geranium, Sage, Strawberry, Vanilla, Vervain, Violet, Water Lilly
Magick to Work: love, friendship, beauty, sensuality, arts, attraction, healing, peace, harmony, artistic ability, creativity generally, reconciliation, beauty, female sexuality, luxury, music, pleasure, scent, sensuality, social affairs

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Friday Is Ruled By Venus

Friday belongs to Venus, both the planet and its namesake Roman goddess of love. This day is sacred to many other gods and goddesses of love such as Eros, Venus, Aphrodite, and the Norse goddess that gave the day its name, Freya. This day of the week is for magical topics such as love, birth, fertility, and romance. Colors for today include pink and aqua. Some suggestions for Friday enchantments would include:

Carrying a rose quartz with you today to send out some gentle and loving vibes to those crabby co-workers

Working a loving Tarot spell to charm a friend’s pregnancy with good health and safety

Working a little flower magic to enchant a single pink rose for friendship and inner beauty, and setting it on your desk. Or try empowering a red rose for passion and placing it in your bedroom.

Burning rose-scented candles to encourage the same effect. Call on Eros to “bring a passion for life” to your days.

Sharing a romantic snack with your partner. Feed each other ripe, red strawberries. Those strawberries are love-inducing food, and are sacred to many love goddesses, including today’s patroness, Freya.

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The Energy of Venus

Weekday ruled by Venus: Friday

Stones: Rose Quartz, moonstone, Pink tourmaline, peridot, emerald, jade.

Herbs/Plants: Pink rose, ivy, birch, heather, clematis, sage, violet, waterlily

Magickal Intentions: Love, romance, marriage, sexual matters, physical beauty, friendship and partnership, strangers and heart matters.

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Can I Dedicate to More Than One Deity?

Question: Can I Dedicate to More Than One Deity?

A reader asks, “Several months ago, when I first began exploring Paganism, I found myself drawn to a particular goddess. Since there was such a strong connection, I performed a dedication ritual to her, and have honored her ever since. Now, however, I feel I’m being called by a different goddess. I’d like to honor both, but I’m worried it might be seen as disrespectful to the first one if I re-dedicate to the second. Can I change my affiliation respectfully, or may I dedicate to multiple deities? I know many believe one should only dedicate to the God/dess OR a specific pair of deities.”

Answer:

That’s an interesting question, and one that can have a variety of answers, depending on your particular flavor of Paganism. In some Pagan traditions, people dedicate to a single god or goddess of that tradition’s pantheon. In other cases, they may dedicate to a pair of deities. Occasionally, people may feel a connection with deities from different pantheons altogether.

It happens.

Human spirituality tends to be somewhat fluid, in that while we can honor one deity we can also be called by another. Does this mean the first no longer has any influence? Not at all – it simply means some other aspect of the Divine finds us interesting.

If you genuinely feel called by this second deity – and from your email, it seems pretty clear that you do – then I would consider exploring things more. Ask the first goddess if she would really be that offended if you honored another one in tandem with her. After all, the deities are distinctly different beings, so honoring a second goddess doesn’t necessarily mean any toes are getting stepped on.

If you’re fortunate enough to have been tapped by the Divine, not just once, but twice, I’d regard it as a gift. My opinion would be that as long as neither deity has any objection to the presence or worship of the other, everything should be fine. Treat both with respect, and show them each the honor they deserve.

By Patti Wigington, Paganism/Wicca Expert
Article originally published on & owned by About.com

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Working With the Gods and Goddesses

There are literally thousands of different deities out there in the Universe, and which ones you choose to honor will often depend significantly upon what pantheon your spiritual path follows. However, many modern Pagans and Wiccans describe themselves as eclectic, which means they may honor a god of one tradition beside a goddess of another. In some cases, we may choose to ask a deity for assistance in a magical working or in problem solving. Regardless, at some point, you’re going to have to sit and sort them all out. If you don’t have a specific, written tradition, then how do you know which gods to call upon?

A good way to look at it is to figure out which deity of your pantheon would be interested in your purpose. In other words, what gods might take the time to look into your situation? This is where the concept of appropriate worship comes in handy — if you can’t take the time to get to know the deities of your path, then you probably shouldn’t be asking them for favors.

So first, figure out your goal. Are you doing a working regarding home and domesticity? Then don’t call upon some masculine power deity. What if you’re celebrating the end of the harvest season, and the dying of the earth? Then you shouldn’t be offering milk and flowers to a spring goddess.

Consider your purpose carefully, before you make offerings or prayers to a particular god or goddess.

Although this is certainly not a comprehensive list of all the gods and their domains, it may help you a bit to get an idea of who is out there, and what sorts of things they may be able to help you with:
Artisanship

For assistance relating to skills, crafts, or handiwork, call upon the Celtic smith god, Lugh. Many other pantheons have forge and craftsmanship gods as well.
Chaos

When it comes to matters of discord and upsetting the balance of things, some people choose to to check in with Loki, the Norse prankster god. However, it’s generally recommended that you don’t do this unless you’re a devotee of Loki in the first place – you may end up getting more than you bargained for.
Destruction

If you’re doing a working related to destruction, the Celtic war goddess the Morrighan may assist you, but don’t trifle with her lightly. A safer bet might be working with Demeter, the Dark Mother of the harvest season.
Fall Harvest

When you celebrate the fall harvest, you may want to take time to honor Herne, the god of the wild hunt, or Osiris, who is often connected with grain and the harvest. Demeter and her daughter, Persephone, are typically connected with the waning part of the year. Pomona is associated with fruit orchards and the bounty of trees in fall. There are also a number of other harvest gods and gods of the vine who may be interested in what you’re doing.
Feminine Energy

For workings related to the moon, lunar energy, or the sacred feminine, consider invoking Artemis or Venus.
Fertility

When it comes to fertility, there are plenty of deities out there to ask for assistance. Consider Cernunnos, the wild stag of the forest, or Freya, a goddess of sexual power and energy. If you follow a Roman-based path, try honoring Bona Dea. There are a number of other fertility gods out there as well, each with their own specific domain.
Home and Marriage

Brighid is a protector of hearth and home, and Juno and Vesta are both patronesses of marriage.
Love and Lust

Aphrodite has long been associated with love and beauty, and so has her counterpart, Venus. Likewise, Eros and Cupid are considered representative of masculine lust. Priapus is a god of raw sexuality, including sexual violence.
Magic

Isis, the mother goddess of Egypt, is often called upon for magical workings, as is Hecate, a goddess of sorcery.
Masculine Energy

Cernunnos is a strong symbol of masculine energy and power, as is Herne, the god of the hunt. Odin and Thor, both Norse gods, are known as powerful, masculine gods.
Motherhood

Isis is a mother goddess on a grand scale, and Juno watches over women in labor.
Prophecy and Divination

Brighid is known as a goddess of prophecy, and so is Cerridwen, with her cauldron of knowledge. Janus, the two-faced god, sees both the past and future.
The Underworld

Because of his harvest associations, Osiris is often connected with the underworld. There are a number of other deities of death and dying.
War and Conflict

The Morrighan is not only a goddess of war, but also of sovereignty and loyalty. Athena protects warriors and imparts them with wisdom. Freya and Thor guide fighters in battle.
Wisdom

Thoth was the Egyptian god of wisdom, and Athena and Odin may also be called upon, depending on your purpose.
Seasonal

There are a number of deities associated with the various times of the Wheel of the Year, including the Winter Solstice, Late winter, the Spring Equinox, and the Summer solstice.
By Patti Wigington, Paganism/Wicca Expert
Article originally published on & owned by About.com

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Appropriate Worship – Honoring the Gods the Right Way

One issue that comes up often for people learning about modern Pagan spirituality is the concept of appropriate worship. There tends to be some question about what, exactly, is the right offering to make to the gods or goddesses of one’s tradition — and how we should honor them when making those offerings.

Let’s imagine that you have two friends. First, we have Jill. She likes French cuisine, Meg Ryan movies, soft music and expensive wine. She’s someone who lets you cry on her shoulder when you’re feeling blue, and she offers some wise and thoughtful insight when you can’t solve a problem on your own. One of her best qualities is her ability to listen.

You also have a friend named Steve. He’s a lot of fun, and sometimes shows up at your house at midnight toting a six-pack. Steve likes watching movies with lots of explosions, took you to your first Metallica concert, and can rebuild a Harley with his eyes closed. He eats mostly bratwurst and Funyuns, enjoys picking up strippers at bars, and is the guy you call when you want to have a good time.

When Jill comes over, are you going to have a nice quiet dinner with a glass of wine and Josh Groban playing in the background, or are you going to hand her a cheeseburger and a beer, pull out the Wii for a round of God of War, and stay up until 3 am seeing who can burp and fart the loudest?

Likewise, if Steve shows up, are you going to do things that he enjoys, or are you going to say, “Hey, Steve, let’s watch Steel Magnolias and talk about our feelings?

Much like our friends Jill and Steve, the gods have certain things they like and value, and certain things they don’t. To offer one of them something better suited to another is not only disrespectful, it shows that you really don’t know them at all and worse yet, haven’t even taken the time to learn about them. What do you think Steve is going to say when you offer him a vegetarian soup and turn on some chick flick? He’s going to bail, that’s what he’s going to do. Because not only did you present him with something he dislikes, but you’re showing a fundamental lack of knowledge of someone you claim is your friend.

Sure, you love Jill and Steve equally, but they’re not the same person, and they don’t have the same likes and dislikes. The gods are the same way — you may honor both the goddess Aphrodite and the god Mars, but that doesn’t mean Mars wants to you to leave him a bouquet of flowers and a glass of milk while you sing him Kumbaya. You can also be sure that Aphrodite probably isn’t interested in offerings of blood and raw meat, or warrior chants.

The idea of right or appropriate worship is not about someone telling you what’s “right or wrong.” It is simply the concept that one should take the time to do things – including worship and offerings – in a way that is conducive to the demands and needs of the god or goddess in question.

When you honor the gods, take the time to put some thought into it. Ask yourself what it is you hope to obtain by making the offering — are you trying to gain something, or merely show your appreciation and gratitude to the Divine? Learn about the types of deities you’re about to honor, and study the specific gods and goddesses of your tradition, so that when you do make an offering or present a ritual in their name, you can do so in a way that truly does them honor.

By Patti Wigington, Paganism/Wicca Expert
Article originally owned & published by About.com

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The Witches Magick for Friday, September 23rd – Weekly Cleansing Bath Ritual

Weekly Cleansing Bath Ritual

You Will Need
3 Tbsp Sea Salt
2 tsp Rosemary ground
4tsp Lavender ground
4oz Favorite Body Wash
I tend to use an unscented body wash for this mixture since the herbs are incredibly fragrant and leave a lovely scent behind on your skin. As you are bathing your child or yourself for that matter, under running water, visualize any stressors, health issues, money issues, any negativity in your life as flowing away down the drain with the water as you are scrubbing with the above mixture. The following chant is also quite effective though feel free to use one of your own.
Negative energies be gone,
Ill health leave this one,
Stressors shed with the watery flow,
Herbs and waters restore once more.

Reference

The Green Mother’s Book of Shadows
Gwenyfur Draigtanllwyth

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Clean Yourself As Well As Your Home

Dirt Charm:
Dirt and dust so detrimental,
Now be gone never inside to settle,
Out of doors shall be yours to own,
Never more in our home.

Dusting Charm:
Item of sentimental value,
Priceless to memory and age,
Family treasure be protected,
Dustless now, no more neglected.

Wash Charm:
Water flow and water cleanse,
Fibers release and un-tense,
Negativity be rinsed away,
Positive energy rinse in to stay.

Chant for clothing:
Shirt gracing my daughter’s form,
Protect her from all harm,
Redirect any negativity,
That could harm her vitality.

Chant for Linens:
Towel drying our clean bodies,
Armor our flesh will all that’s positive,
Guard our health from what would harm,
Absorb any lingering malady

Reference

The Green Mother’s Book of Shadows
Gwenyfur Draigtanllwyth

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The Witches Moon Phase for Friday, September 23

September 23
Last Quarter
Illumination: 49%

The Moon today is in a Third Quarter phase. Sometimes called a Last Quarter Moon, this phase occurs roughly 3 weeks after the New Moon when the Moon is three quarters of the way through it’s orbit around the earth. If you live in the northern hemisphere the Moons left side will be illuminated and the right side dark. For thoughts of you in the southern hemisphere it will be the opposite with the right side illuminated. On the day of the Third Quarter phase the Moon will rise around midnight on the eastern horizon and set in the west around noon the next day. In the days following the Third Quarter Phase the Moon’s illumination will decrees each day until the New Moon.
PHASE DETAILS FOR – FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 23, 2016
Phase: Last Quarter
Illumination: 49%
Moon Age: 22.22 days
Moon Angle: 0.54
Moon Distance: 369,649.68 km
Sun Angle: 0.53
Sun Distance: 150,065,699.38 km

Reference

MoonGiant.com

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No, Your Zodiac Sign Has Not Changed

The latest buzz on the internet is still bunk

Your sign has not changed. The zodiac is not wrong. There are not 13 signs. Any questions?

There are only 12 signs in the zodiac, and, contrary to the recent buzz on the Internet, your sign has not changed. Every few years, a tired old story resurfaces that a thirteenth zodiac sign has emerged, and that everyone’s signs as they know them have changed. Don’t believe these so-called scientific experts! Tarot.com astrologer Rick Levine explains it all…

How a perfect storm is created

On September 15, 2016, Cosmopolitan magazine published an article on the Internet with the headline, “Don’t freak out, but your star sign has probably changed… Okay yes we’re freaking out.” The article goes on to list the new sign dates, including a thirteenth zodiac sign called Ophiuchus. Unfortunately, the technicalities behind this confusing disinformation can be complicated to grasp, leaving followers of Western Astrology uncertain of the truth. This bad news spread like wildfire, reigniting the same foolishness that ran rampant in January of 2011, when the Minneapolis Star Tribune ran a story in which a local astronomy instructor definitively claimed that the Earth’s wobble had shifted the zodiac signs. The claim created an instant stir then, setting the web on fire, just as it’s doing now.

Relax. Your zodiac sign has not changed. There is no reason to panic or remove your tattoo. There is no thirteenth sign.

Here we go again

The Internet is amazing when it comes to disseminating news quickly, but it’s just as amazing when it spreads disinformation. According to bbe.com, this most current astrological brouhaha began when Cosmopolitan magazine misinterpreted a NASA post for children that discussed two separate but interrelated facts.

Fact #1 as claimed by NASA: There is a thirteenth constellation that crosses the ecliptic, which is the celestial highway the planets travel along on their orbits around the Sun.

The NASA site explains that the Babylonians divided the ecliptic into 12 equal parts, “like cutting a pizza into 12 equal slices.” These 12 slices of the sky contained stars that became known as the zodiac. They go on to explain that there were actually 13, not 12 constellations in the zodiac, and that the Babylonians left out the sign Ophiuchus as a matter of convenience. Therefore, NASA claims that the Sun — which appears to move through the 12 signs each year from Earth’s point of view — is aligned with Ophiuchus for nearly three weeks each year, and people born at that time are born under the sign of Ophiuchus. Furthermore, NASA notes that the constellations in the zodiac are not equal in size, and that the Sun passes through Scorpio in 7 days but takes 45 days to transit Virgo.

Fact #2 as claimed by NASA: 3,000 years after the Babylonians created the 12 signs of the zodiac, the sky has shifted, changing most people’s sign.

NASA is, in fact, referring to a well-known concept that is referred to as “the Precession of the Equinox.” Somehow, they and other scientists believe that astrologers are not aware of this, and therefore don’t know that everyone’s zodiac sign is wrong. However, astrologers have known for millennia that this precession refers to the very slow backward wobble of the Earth on its tilted axis. This wobble causes the Sun’s apparent alignment with the constellations to slip backward one degree every 72 years, making one complete cycle in 26,000 years.

The truth

From a modern astrological point of view, the facts are quite simple:

1) The zodiac used by Western astrologers is based on the seasons, not the constellations. Astrologers know the planets go around the Sun, but Astrology is Earth-centered, and we mark the movement of the planets against the four seasons on Earth as calculated by the Spring and Autumn Equinoxes and the Summer and Winter Solstices.

2) The signs of the zodiac are derived from — but not aligned with — the constellations of the same names, although they did align about 2,000 years ago. The constellations in the sky at the start of each season have changed over 2,000 years, however, your sign has not. If you were a Sagittarius, you’re still a Sagittarius. Period.

3) There cannot be a thirteenth sign in the zodiac, because the zodiac was created as a mathematical abstraction to divide the sky into 12 equal parts, independent of what stars or constellations may appear there. It doesn’t matter how many constellations touch the ecliptic, there are only 12 signs. No matter when you were born, you’re not an Ophiuchus.

4) As Earth continues to wobble, the constellations will continue to separate from the zodiac at the rate of one degree every 72 years, as the equinoxes and solstices continue to deviate from the fixed stars.

Ignorance is not bliss, It’s ignorance

Unfortunately rumors like this are difficult to stop, because they spread faster than the correct information that tries to clean up the misunderstanding. Dr. Richard Feynman, a Nobel prize-winning physicist, once stated, “I believe that a scientist looking at nonscientific problems is just as dumb as the next guy.” NASA scientists have successfully applied mathematics to take astronomy into the future. Their formulas, based on equations discovered by Johannes Kepler (who, incidentally, was an astrologer), can land a rocket on Mars. However, the engineers and technicians at NASA are not educated when it comes to Astrology, and every attempt they make to debunk Astrology only brings this fact to light.

Author’s Note:

It is not lost on this astrologer that the re-emergence of this story occurred at the height of a Mercury Retrograde phase. Those who follow Astrology know that Mercury is related to communication, and often information from the past resurfaces during Mercury Retrograde cycles.

Part of the Daily Insight Group

©Tarot.com 2016. All rights reserved.

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Weekend Love Horoscope

September 23-25: All or nothing

This Friday, Venus moves into intense, magnetic Scorpio. As a result, you can expect matters of the heart to take on a deeper, more passionate tone. Possessiveness and an “all or nothing” attitude will prevail. With Venus in Scorpio, love is not for the faint of heart. In fact, only the strong will survive now! If you’re ready to face the darkness with your lover, then you’re ready for this weekend. If not, it’s best to avoid the game of love altogether.

This Weekend’s Romantic Rating*

092316

* Heart ratings are based on the lunar cycle. They range from low to full, with low indicating a rocky weekend for romance and full indicating plenty of passionate potential.

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Your Daily Horoscopes for Friday, September 23

 

Aries

Aries Horoscope

Aries

This can be an excellent time for working on your home or personal life, dear Aries. Goals are clear now, and you’re particularly skilled at understanding current limitations and working around them. Venus enters your intimacy sector today, and will transit here until October 18th. You more readily get to the very core of problems and enjoy working through problems, particularly related to power dynamics. Your instincts for money are excellent. Resolving differences comes more quickly, making it a good time to seek out agreements. Financial and emotional support may be forthcoming, and for some, coming to peaceful agreements about money with a partner or ex may figure strongly. Your intimate life can be happier or more satisfying during this period.

Taurus

Taurus

This is an excellent time to show your commitment to a relationship or to distinguish yourself as a unique friend, dear Taurus. Your value is more apparent than usual. Loyalty is a real selling point right now! As well today, lovely Venus, your ruler, arrives in your partnership sector, bringing sweetness to your manner and a partnership. You may be drawing helpful, charming, or pleasant people into your life during this cycle that lasts until October 18th. This is a favorable time for negotiations and agreements. With Mercury now direct in your romance sector and Venus in your partnership sector, love relationships can be in great shape.

Gemini

Gemini

You have a firm grip on your capabilities today, dear Gemini, and a realistic view of what you may be able to do to improve wealth and satisfaction from your work. This allows you to draw up plans and refine or define long-term goals with confidence. Also today, Venus enters your solar sixth house for a several-week stay. Until October 18th, Venus encourages you to seek out more harmony in your daily life, work, and routines. Romantic and social opportunities may arise through the pursuit of health and work goals. While you may sometimes be quite distracted from practical matters, you’re likely to find a healthy balance. You might also develop more appreciation for the work you do or find more pleasure in ironing out details.

Cancer

Cancer

You may be distinguishing yourself from others in the work you do or regarding your commitment and work ethic now, dear Cancer. You are seeing your own capabilities clearly, and this boosts clarity concerning your goals. The next few weeks bring exciting energy to your love life. Your personal appeal is on the upswing and your creative juices are flowing with Venus in your solar fifth house from today until October 18th. While the Sun has moved into an introspective part of your chart, when it comes to the expression of affection and the pursuit of pleasure, you’re now coming out of your protective shell. You are also receiving love and compliments more confidently. Family is supportive. While intimacy is craved, you are more willing to take a few risks emotionally.

Leo

Leo

With Venus now transiting your solar fourth house until October 18th, dear Leo, a more protective energy comes to your love life, and more beauty and harmony is likely in your home life. Safety, comfort, and familiarity become especially important to you. You’re less inclined to express your affection indiscriminately. Intimacy and trust are more important to you than excitement and change when it comes to your attachments. It’s a cycle in which you can be a little more self-protective and also protective of those you love. It’s an excellent period for redecorating and entertaining in the home. If you need to repair or refresh relations with family, you’re in a better position to do so now and in the coming weeks. Today, you’re inclined to withdraw a little from everyday pressures and noise. You need a couple of days for emotional renewal.

Virgo

Virgo Symbol/Glyph

Virgo

Venus moves into a sign that’s a little more comfortable and understandable for you, dear Virgo, and will stay there until October 18th. During this cycle, communication is integral to your feelings of being loved and appreciated. You’re also in an excellent position to express yourself. Fortunately, you are presenting your ideas and comments with unique charm and special ease during this cycle. Making social connections and sharing your thoughts comes more smoothly and naturally during this mostly upbeat period. It’s a good time for enjoying studies and learning, although you might feel a little lazy when it comes to particularly serious topics or tasks that require a lot of brainpower just for the time being. It’s an active cycle for opening up the lines of communication with siblings, classmates, and neighbors. This can also be a favorable period for purchases that open up transportation and communication channels.

Libra

Libra Astrology Glyph-Symbol

Libra

Today and until October 18th, Venus is gracing your values sector, dear Libra, as it ends its transit of your sign today. You can be drawn to luxury and comfort items during this cycle, but over-spending will make you nervous, so use common sense. The ability to relate well with others might enhance your personal finances during this period. When it comes to matters of the heart, you value those who make you feel comfortable, and familiarity is more important to you than the excitement of new love during this cycle. With Venus no longer transiting your sign, your romantic and social yearnings tend to stabilize. This is a period for establishing your needs and desires and for exploring how to satisfy them best. Today is powerful for knowing your capabilities and gaining others’ appreciation for your work ethic.

Scorpio

Scorpio Symbol Glyph

Scorpio

You’re learning a lot about your capabilities these days, dear Scorpio, and through a realistic assessment of limitations, you’re in a great position to create or refine long-term goals. Others are particularly drawn to your point of view, beliefs, and ideas. Venus begins its transit of your sign today, and you’ll continue to host this planet of love, harmony, and pleasure until October 18th. The more likable, charming, and finer qualities of your personality shine during this cycle. You’re also bound to find it easier to express your needs and affections. For the next while, positive attention and appreciation are especially forthcoming. Romantic matters, as well as pleasure-seeking activities, come to the fore now. You are more likely to pay closer attention to your physical appearance and mannerisms, aiming to improve and enhance your attractiveness. Others find you agreeable and cooperative and your powers of attraction skyrocket.

Sagittarius

Sagittarius Glyph Symbol

Sagittarius

Today is strong for mental health matters, dear Sagittarius. You can come to excellent strategies or programs for improving your outlook and belief in yourself. Insights are powerful now, and might also revolve around business, money, and work, and establishing yourself in this way. Venus moves into your privacy and soul sector today and will stay there until October 18th. While love matters could become more complicated or difficult to understand, they can also be more rewarding as you get in touch with your innermost desires and longings. This will take time and soul-searching, but it’s sure to be a revealing process. It can mark the end of a financial or romantic cycle – a period of cutting out the dead wood and reviewing the past. You’re naturally not as explicit, decisive, and open about expressing your affections during this cycle in preparation for the Venus in Sagittarius cycle that begins on October 18th.

Capricorn

Capricorn Symbol/Glyph

Capricorn

It can be a powerful time for bonding with a partner or friend, dear Capricorn, as you’re particularly realistic about what needs to be done to strengthen and improve your social or love life now. You are distinguishing yourself as unique and worthy – as a friend, lover, or partner. Venus begins its transit of your friendship sector today, and until October 18th, friendly relationships with others are strengthened or formed. Focus is on equality and positive energy when it comes to love during this cycle. You are ready to try out different and possibly even unconventional ways of relating to others. Friends are more supportive or help connect you with personal opportunities. Business income may improve during this phase.

Aquarius

Aquarius

You are likely to feel far more directed and goal-oriented now, dear Aquarius, after a period in which many things seemed to be up in the air. Your attitude towards responsibilities improves, which makes filling them easier. Responsibilities in love also become clearer in the next while with Venus traveling through your solar tenth house today until October 18th. Relationships with bosses, parents, teachers, associates, and the public improve. It’s an excellent time for improving or developing your reputation. It’s a good influence on your public image and for professional endeavors. You can bring more charm and polish to relations on the job, and higher-ups tend to look upon you favorably during this cycle.

Pisces

Pisces

This can be an excellent time for your creative or romantic reputation, dear Pisces. You’re distinguishing yourself from the pack, standing out for being unique and also for your commitment. Today, Venus enters Scorpio and your sector of spirit and adventure where it will transit until October 18th. It becomes more straightforward to express or show your feelings, and this comes at a time when Mercury is now direct in your relationship sector, improving your relationships even further. You may be looking for a little more excitement in your social or love life now, or seeking to find more meaning in these things. It’s wonderfully natural for you to get out and experience new situations during this cycle. An appreciation for things that are ever so slightly exotic is stimulated now.

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If Today is Your Birthday: September 23

You are very engaging, quick-witted, personable, and magnetic. You have a mischievous quality that is generally good-natured and likable, and that keeps you youthful no matter your age! You are what might be described as a gentle leader, as people naturally gravitate to you, but you are not aggressive or showy by nature. Even so, you make things happen and bring change. You are quite articulate and make an engaging conversationalist – people enjoy your company. You are always curious and often a little mischievous. You can be very idealistic in love. Famous people born today: Mickey Rooney, Jason Alexander, Julio Iglesias, John Coltrane, Ray Charles, Bruce Springsteen, Ani DiFranco.

Your Birthday Year Forecast:

Your birthday occurs around a Third Quarter Moon this year, and you are reaching an important turning point in terms of personal growth. You may be more emotional this year, and should watch for unnecessary conflicts and making hasty decisions as a result. Otherwise, this is a year of greater understanding and a strong desire to take care of business. This should be a busy, dynamic period in your life.

You have a stronger than usual desire to improve and learn this year. Optimism and confidence are with you, and you are able to attract fortunate circumstances into your life as a result. Problems are easier to resolve. Your broader perspective on matters keeps you from getting lost in details or overly frustrated by everyday stresses and strains. Even so, you can be exceptionally busy this year. At times, you may feel like the pace of your life is running ahead of you. You can be especially productive, however, in all types of communications–writing, speaking, learning, teaching, and so forth.

This is an excellent year in which to advance projects revolving around communications – writing, speaking, selling, and so forth. Your reputation may be enhanced through word of mouth. Making new contacts through learning and mental pursuits figures strongly as well. However, there will be times when you take yourself too seriously. You may become bogged down in your work. It’s a strong year for recognizing flaws and errors. As long as you don’t forget the “big picture”, you could find you are motivated to channel your mental energy into tasks that require structured and organized thought, tackling projects that you may have found too mundane or downright boring in other years.

You feel energized and inspired creatively this year, ready to fight for something you believe in. You find it easier to assert your desires and opinions. However, there can be times when you’re too hasty or impatient. Your energy levels run high this year and this period is likely to be especially busy. You could be rather wilful and impassioned, and it would be best to channel excess energy into healthy physical outlets. If you suffer from frequent headaches, it is likely that you are not dealing with your own anger or desire to take the lead appropriately. You feel a great need for action, but if you don’t know where you’re headed, you might take a wrong turn. As long as you channel the excess energy constructively, instead of wasting your time arguing or getting yourself into conflicts with others, you can accomplish much. Disputes and conflict can figure rather strongly this year.

Personal magnetism runs high this year. You are playfully competitive and might win a major competition, if applicable. This is a good period for creative projects and joining with others in pursuing a common goal. You may be making personal and physical changes that contribute to a vital, energetic lifestyle and appealing manner.

Friendships are in stronger focus than usual this year – there may be a significant new friendship developed during this period. This is also a big “idea” year – useful and creative ideas come to you now, and you’re especially able to put them into action.

Bursts of creativity and energy emerge at seemingly perfect times and help you to further your goals again this year. Healthy risk-taking is likely, as you are more able to spot an opportunity when you see one. It is easier than usual to break free from habits that have previously held you back from going after what you want in life.

This is an excellent year for getting (and giving, if appropriate) expert advice. Organizing your affairs is highly favored. The public is likely to appreciate your ideas and work. This can be a strong time to bond with people younger than you as well as siblings and classmates. There may be a project, idea, or person that demands much of your attention or occupies much of your thoughts. It’s a strong year for any project or studies that require concentrated effort. You are especially resourceful.

This can be a year of more passion for your projects and interests. You are innovative and might frequently stray from your usual routines. This is likely to be a particularly busy year, but you should watch for overwork or pushing yourself too hard. Watch for impatience and hastiness as well. Relationships can be exciting, and personal appeal is high.

2016 is a Number Five year for you. Ruled by Mercury. This is a year of exploration and freedom. It’s a time when exploration and reaching out to others brings opportunities. It’s a good time to advertise and sell. Surprises are in store, and the routine is broken. This is a year when exciting relationships can be formed, or, if you are already in a partnership, new life is breathed into the relationship. Advice – explore, look for adventure, keep your eyes open for opportunities, mingle.

2017 will be a Number Six year for you. Ruled by Venus. This is a year of relative contentment. It is a time when love is the easiest to attract, and partnerships formed under this vibration have a better chance for longevity. You are able to attract others, and material things as well, this year. This is a good year for establishing harmony in the family and in the home. Advice – develop existing relationships, be positive and receptive because these kinds of energies help you to attract what you desire.

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Birthdays on the Virgo-Libra Cusp

Learn all about the personality of “The Cusp of Beauty”

If you were born on the Virgo-Libra cusp, from about September 19 to September 25, you’re a beautiful individual, inside and out! The energies of Virgo and Libra work nicely together to create very balanced people who are both intellectual and artistic.

Individuals born on “The Cusp of Beauty” are ruled by communication planet Mercury and love planet Venus, which lends them the rational qualities of Virgo as well as the creative and social attributes of Libra — it’s the best of both worlds!

Beauty cuspers are always up to date on the latest trends, and they love all things of beauty, including people, art and nature. They strive to keep their personal appearance and their home aesthetically pleasing, but they must avoid taking this too far at the risk of becoming superficial.

In fact, most Virgo-Libra cuspers are not superficial at all! They are deep thinkers with sharp analytical skills and a strong work ethic, and that combination is a thing of beauty, indeed.

Learn more about the beautiful Virgo-Libra cusp:

Name of Cusp: The Cusp of Beauty

Date Range: September 19 to September 25

Strengths: Attractive, intellectual, communicative, artistic, social, sensuous.

Weaknesses: Superficial, materialistic, detached, perfectionist, nervous, jaded.

How Virgo-Libra energy works together: Virgo’s analytical skills and attention to detail combine nicely with Libra’s social skills and love of beauty to create balanced individuals who are both intelligent and artistic. Both signs share a love of beauty that meshes nicely.

What they love: Objects of beauty, including people, art, fashion, home décor, nature and anything pretty you can look at, buy or adorn yourself with.

What they need: Virgo-Libra cuspers need to keep their lives in order and everything running smoothly and looking good in order to prevent anxiety.

Advice: Be careful of becoming too preoccupied with appearances and spending too much money on material things. Focus more on your spiritual side!

Famous people born on the Virgo-Libra cusp: Trisha Yearwood, Adam West, Jeremy Irons, Twiggy, Jimmy Fallon, Sophia Loren, Upton Sinclair, Alexander the Great, Faith Hill, H. G. Wells, Larry Hagman, Leonard Cohen, Stephen King, Bill Murray, Ricki Lake, Nicole Richie, Tommy Lasorda, Joan Jett, Scott Baio, Andrea Bocelli, Mickey Rooney, Jason Alexander, Julio Iglesias, John Coltrane, Ray Charles, Bruce Springsteen, Ani DiFranco, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Jim Henson, Phil Hartman, Will Smith, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Heather Locklear, Mark Hamill, Christopher Reeve, Michael Douglas, Barbara Walters, William Faulkner.

Part of the Daily Insight Group

©Tarot.com 2016. All rights reserved.

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Lady Willow’s Tarot Card of the Day for September 23rd is Strength

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Strength



Strength denotes an inner power, mastery of will and development of inner might. Through mastering one’s emotions and learning from both success and failure the person Strength represents has reached a place where they are influential without applying physical force, able to weather the roughest of storms, and not likely to abandon the less fortunate. Strength also denotes a large capacity for forgiveness and compassion. Strength is not as much about winning as it is about achieving balance, overcoming hardship, and using well crafted persuasion to gain allies.

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Lady’s Willow Rune for Friday, September 23rd is Raidho

bw-raidho

Raidho

Raidho may mark the coming of a physical or spiritual journey. Whichever the case, changes in your life are soon to come. Spiritual or material goals may be attained.

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Your Influences for the Weekend of September 23 thru September 25th

 

Tarot Influence

45

Five of Wands Reversed

Obstacles to success will be overcome. New ventures are on the horizon.

 

 

Astrological Influence

35

Gemini Reversed

Gemini reversed denotes vacillation. Decisions are not made, because all side of the issue pull with the same strength.

 

Element Influence

23

Air

Air denotes freedom and the ability to transcent the mundane. You may be, or may soon experience a spiritual or secular liberation.

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A Healthy You!

With autumn and winter come cooler temperatures and ebbing daylight. Our bodies respond with decreased energy levels and reduced resistance and stamina. Given that most of the fall and winter are spent indoors, it’s no surprise that we often develop illnesses during these months. To stay healthy, follow a varied diet, sleep well, and get regular exercise. Meditating for even five to ten minutes a day supports the immune system and promotes a sense of calm.
Make use of incense, smudges, herbs, and essential oils to boost your wellness.
Garlic: kills bacteria and viruses; warms and stimulates.
Ginger: dries and clears congestion, improves digestion; enhances circulation.
Juniper: deeply purifies, cleanses, and protects; clears the mind.
Nutmeg: warms and stimulates; supports circulation.
Sage: antiseptic; fights respiratory infections; opens airways.
Thyme: antiseptic; stimulant; effective against respiratory illnesses.

Reference

Llewellyn’s 2013 Sabbats Almanac: Samhain 2012 to Mabon 2013 (Annuals – Sabbats Almanac)
Digitalis, Raven; Pharr, Daniel; Pesznecker, Susan; Madden, Kristin; Raedisch, Linda; Kynes, Sandra; Blake, Deborah; Cobb, Dallas Jennifer; Dugan, Ellen; Ress, Suzanne; Marquis, Melanie; Zaman, Natalie; Renée, Janina.

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“May there be peace in the North;
May there be peace in the South;
May there be peace in the West;
May there be peace in the East.
May there be peace throughout the whole world.”
– Druid Blessing, Order of Bards, Ovates and Druids

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I would ask in closing to remember Lady of the Abyss. We have a fund to help with her medical bills which are going to be very expensive. There is no price, however, you can put on a life especially one as precious as Lady A’s. We appreciate all the
donations we have received so far and I guarantee you they have been put in a medical account just for her. If you haven’t had the opportunity to donate, we would appreciate any amount you can send.

Thank you and Goddess Bless You!

Mabon Gathering Due to Illness

Coven Life®

I am sorry I have to cancel the Mabon gathering tonight because I am not feeling very well. I am waiting for the final confirmation from my doctor for medical results. Because of the stress, I have been under for the last 13 months it has gotten worse. One of the symptoms I am having a very hard time with is major headaches almost daily and always being very tired.

Please forgive me for canceling on such short notice.

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Full Harvest Moon Spell for Blessings

PAYSAGE D'AUTOMNE

Full Harvest Moon Spell for Blessings

Set up a pretty altar full of seasonal accessories such as apples, grapes, acorns, miniature pumpkins, and colorful fall leaves. Think of how enchanting white pumpkins would be for this ritual. If you were having a coven get-together in the fall on a full moon, you could do an entire white pumpkin theme. After arranging your altar, place two taper or pillar candles in holders. You will need one white and one orange candle. The orange candle will represent the harvest season, and its color does increase your energy level. The white candle symbolizes the full Harvest Moon and all of her magick.
Once you have things arranged to your liking, take a few moments to ground and center yourself. When you are ready, repeat this harvest moon blessing:

Beneath the light of the Harvest
Moon so bright
I am thankful for many
blessings tonight.
I celebrate the bounty of the
good green earth
Lord and Lady, bless my home
with health, peace, and mirth.
By the light of the full Harvest
Moon this spell is spun
Bringing autumn blessings
to all and harm to no one.

Allow the candles to burn out in a safe place until they go out on their own. Keep your altar setup out and enjoy it throughout the fall. If you need to change out the fruits and vegetables, then do so, and have fun updating the altar and keeping it looking beautiful during the season.

 
Seasons of Witchery: Celebrating the Sabbats with the Garden Witch
Ellen Dugan

Harvest Moon Magick

Herbstnacht ::: Autumn Night
Harvest Moon Magick

Traditionally the Harvest Moon occurs at the full moon closest to the autumn equinox. Typically this occurs in September; however, every couple of years it will fall in October. Some calendars classically list the September full moon as the Harvest Moon whether that month’s full moon is closest to the equinox or not.
The best way to tell when the true Harvest Moon will occur is to find the date of the equinox (when the sun enters Libra) on the calendar, then count the days to the full moon in September. Now go back to the date of the autumn equinox and count forward the number of days until October’s full moon. Whichever full moon has the lower number of days from the equinox— that’s the Harvest Moon. Also, you should know that getting the official Harvest Moon date mixed up happens. It happened to me last year. So if it happened to you, too, don’t worry— the sky will not fall in and the world will keep on spinning.
The full Harvest Moon usually looks larger than other full moons due to the angle of the earth and because of refraction, a bending of the light. In the simplest of terms, the cooler fall air curves the light The traditional magicks associated with the Harvest Moon include abundance, prosperity, and completion. The night of the Harvest Moon would be a perfect occasion to celebrate the season of the harvest and to take a moment and reflect on what you are thankful for, such as freedom, friends, home, and family.

 
Seasons of Witchery: Celebrating the Sabbats with the Garden Witch
Ellen Dugan

Mabon History: The Second Harvest

BIRD AUTUMN

Mabon History: The Second Harvest

Two days a year, the Northern and Southern hemispheres receive the same amount of sunlight. Not only that, each receives the same amount of light as they do dark — this is because the earth is tilted at a right angle to the sun, and the sun is directly over the equator. In Latin, the word equinox translates to “equal night.” The autumn equinox, or Mabon, takes place on or near September 21, and its spring counterpart falls around March 21. If you’re in the Northern hemisphere, the days will begin getting shorter after the autumn equinox and the nights will grow longer — in the Southern hemisphere, the reverse is true.
Global Traditions

The idea of a harvest festival is nothing new. In fact, people have celebrated it for millennia, all around the world. In ancient Greece, Oschophoria was a festival held in the fall to celebrate the harvesting of grapes for wine. In the 1700’s, the Bavarians came up with Oktoberfest, which actually begins in the last week of September, and it was a time of great feasting and merriment, still in existence today.

China’s Mid-Autumn festival is celebrated on the night of the Harvest Moon, and is a festival of honoring family unity.
Giving Thanks

Although the traditional American holiday of Thanksgiving falls in November, many cultures see the second harvest time of the fall equinox as a time of giving thanks. After all, it’s when you figure out how well your crops did, how fat your animals have gotten, and whether or not your family will be able to eat during the coming winter. However, by the end of November, there’s not a whole lot left to harvest. Originally, the American Thanksgiving holiday was celebrated on October 3, which makes a lot more sense agriculturally.

In 1863, Abraham Lincoln issued his “Thanksgiving Proclamation”, which changed the date to the last Thursday in November. In 1939, Franklin Delano Roosevelt adjusted it yet again, making it the second-to-last Thursday, in the hopes of boosting post-Depression holiday sales. Unfortunately, all this did was confuse people. Two years later, Congress finalized it, saying that the fourth Thursday of November would be Thanksgiving, each year.
Symbols of the Season

The harvest is a time of thanks, and also a time of balance — after all, there are equal hours of daylight and darkness. While we celebrate the gifts of the earth, we also accept that the soil is dying. We have food to eat, but the crops are brown and going dormant. Warmth is behind us, cold lies ahead.

Some symbols of Mabon include:

Mid-autumn vegetables, like squashes and gourds
Apples and anything made from them, such as cider or pies
Seeds, nuts and seed pods
Baskets, symbolizing the gathering of crops
Sickles and scythes
Grapes, vines, wine

You can use any of these to decorate your home or your altar at Mabon.
Feasting and Friends

Early agricultural societies understood the importance of hospitality — it was crucial to develop a relationship with your neighbors, because they might be the ones to help you when your family ran out of food. Many people, particularly in rural villages, celebrated the harvest with great deals of feasting, drinking, and eating. After all, the grain had been made into bread, beer and wine had been made, and the cattle were brought down from the summer pastures for the coming winter. Celebrate Mabon yourself with a feast — and the bigger, the better!
Magic and Mythology

Nearly all of the myths and legends popular at this time of the year focus on the themes of life, death, and rebirth. Not much of a surprise, when you consider that this is the time at which the earth begins to die before winter sets in!

Demeter and Her Daughter

Perhaps the best known of all the harvest mythologies is the story of Demeter and Persephone. Demeter was a goddess of grain and of the harvest in ancient Greece. Her daughter, Persephone, caught the eye of Hades, god of the underworld. When Hades abducted Persephone and took her back to the underworld, Demeter’s grief caused the crops on earth to die and go dormant. By the time she finally recovered her daughter, Persephone had eaten six pomegranate seeds, and so was doomed to spend six months of the year in the underworld. These six months are the time when the earth dies, beginning at the time of the autumn equinox.

Inanna Takes on the Underworld

The Sumerian goddess Inanna is the incarnation of fertility and abundance. Inanna descended into the underworld where her sister, Ereshkigal, ruled. Erishkigal decreed that Inanna could only enter her world in the traditional ways — stripping herself of her clothing and earthly posessions. By the time Inanna got there, Erishkigal had unleashed a series of plagues upon her sister, killing Inanna. While Inanna was visiting the underworld, the earth ceased to grow and produce. A vizier restored Inanna to life, and sent her back to earth. As she journeyed home, the earth was restored to its former glory.
Modern Celebrations

For contemporary Druids, this is the celebration of Alban Elfed, which is a time of balance between the light and the dark. Many Asatru groups honor the fall equinox as Winter Nights, a festival sacred to Freyr.

For most Wiccans and NeoPagans, this is a time of community and kinship. It’s not uncommon to find a Pagan Pride Day celebration tied in with Mabon. Often, PPD organizers include a food drive as part of the festivities, to celebrate the bounty of the harvest and to share with the less fortunate.

If you choose to celebrate Mabon, give thanks for the things you have, and take time to reflect on the balance within your own life, honoring both the darkness and the light. Invite your friends and family over for a feast, and count the blessings that you have among kin and community.

 

Patti Wigington, Paganism/Wicca Expert
Article originally published and owned by About.com

The Goddess Book of Days for Wednesday, September 21st

Autumn Beautiful

The Goddess Book of Days for Wednesday, September 21st

The seventh day of the Eleusinian Mysteries, sports and games. Feast of Divine Life dedicated to the cycle of Maiden, Mother and Crone, as Persephone/Demeter/ Hecate. The concepts of the Morrigan (Ana, Badb, Macha), Three phases of the Moon (Diana, Selene, Hecate), Three Mothers (Sarasvati, Lakshmi, Parvati), Three Fates (Lachesis, Clotho, Atropos), and the Noms, derive from this cycle.

The Goddess Book of Days
Diane Stein

The Sky This Week – for September 21 to September 25

Autumn Kitten

The Sky This Week – for September 21 to September 25

An unobstructed view of Venus, the Summer Triangle still prominent, and other awesome things to look for in the sky this week.
By Richard Talcott
Wednesday, September 21

Although autumn arrives with the equinox tomorrow, the Summer Triangle remains prominent in the evening sky. Look high in the west after darkness falls and your eyes will fall on the brilliant star Vega in the constellation Lyra the Harp. At magnitude 0.0, Vega is the brightest member of the Triangle. The second-brightest star, magnitude 0.8 Altair in Aquila the Eagle, lies some 35° southeast of Vega. The asterism’s dimmest member, magnitude 1.3 Deneb in Cygnus the Swan, stands about 25° east-northeast of Vega. For observers at midnorthern latitudes, Deneb passes through the zenith at approximately 9:30 p.m. local daylight time, about an hour after twilight ends.

Thursday, September 22

With the days growing shorter and kids back in school, it shouldn’t be surprising that summer’s reign is just about over. The warmest season comes to an official close at 10:21 a.m. EDT, when Earth reaches the autumnal equinox. This marks the moment when the Sun crosses the celestial equator traveling south. Our star rises due east and sets due west today. If the Sun were a point of light and Earth had no atmosphere, everyone would get 12 hours of sunlight and 12 hours of darkness. But the presence of air and the finite size of our star make today a few minutes longer than 12 hours.

Friday, September 23

Last Quarter Moon occurs at 5:56 a.m. EDT. It rises around midnight local daylight time this morning, which gives North American observers a chance to see it almost precisely half-lit. Earth’s only natural satellite appears among the background stars of northern Orion, approximately 10° north of the red supergiant star Betelgeuse.

Saturday, September 24
Uranus reaches opposition three weeks from today, but it already has become a tempting evening target. The ice giant world rises before twilight ends and climbs nearly 40° above the eastern horizon by 11 p.m. local daylight time. The magnitude 5.7 planet lies in Pisces, 2.4° north-northwest of magnitude 4.8 Mu (m) Piscium. Although Uranus is bright enough to see with the naked eye under a dark sky, binoculars make the task much easier. A telescope reveals the planet’s blue-green disk, which spans 3.7″.

Sunday, September 25

Saturn remains a gorgeous sight in the evening sky all week. It stands some 20° high in the southwest as twilight fades to darkness and doesn’t set until after 10 p.m. local daylight time. The ringed world resides among the background stars of southwestern Ophiuchus, just 6° north of Antares, the brightest star in neighboring Scorpius. The yellow-hued planet shines at magnitude 0.5 and appears significantly brighter than the ruddy star. When viewed through a telescope, Saturn shows a 16″-diameter disk surrounded by a dramatic ring system that spans 36″ and tilts 24° to our line of sight.

Reference

The Astronomy Magazine

The Sun & Moon Data for Wednesday, September 21st

Autumn

The Sun & Moon Data for Wednesday, September 21st

The Sun
Sun Direction: ↑ 128.23° SE
Sun Altitude: 39.81°
Sun Distance: 93.307 million mi
Next Equinox: Sep 22, 2016 9:21 AM (Autumnal)
Sunrise Today: 6:42 AM↑ 89° East
Sunset Today: 6:52 PM↑ 271° West
Length of Daylight: 12 hours, 10 minutes

The Moon
Moon Direction: ↑ 275.89° W
Moon Altitude: 18.50°
Moon Distance: 228384 mi
Next New Moon: Sep 30, 20167:11 PM
Next Full Moon: Oct 15, 201611:23 PM
Next Moonset: Today12:04 PM
Current Moon Phase: Waning Gibbous
Illumination: 69.8%

Reference

timeanddate.com