Third Quarter Moon Phase

Luna Magica

Third Quarter Moon Phase

(From the second night after the full moon to the waning half moon.)

When the moon begins to wane, its light slowly dissipates in the night sky. This is a powerful time of internal energy and an opportunity to quietly look within. Focus on dreams, instincts, and gut hunches. If you are clairaudient, pay particular attention to those internal messages. While the moon wanes, work magick to remove negativity and obstacles that you are facing. During this lunar phase, work magick to carefully dissolve problems, push away troubles, and remove negativity in the best way possible for all those concerned. As the moon wanes, so too will the situation or problem. The third-quarter moon corresponds to the Crone aspect of the Goddess, such as Cerridwen, Hecate, or Nepthys.

—Ellen Dugan, Natural Witchery: Intuitive, Personal & Practical Magick

 

Advertisements

The Witches Correspondence for Samhain

Magical Halloween Pictures

The Witches Correspondence for Samhain

 

Date: October 31st

Colours: Black, orange

Stones: Bloodstone, jet, obsidian, ruby, beryl, carnelian

Herbs: Bay leaf, mugwort, nutmeg, sage, wormwood

Foods: Apples, nuts, beef, turnips, pears, pomegranates, pumpkin, corn

Drinks: Mead, mulled wine, apple juice, absinthe

Flowers/Decorations: Chrysanthemum, hazel, thistle, pumpkin, autumn leaves

Type Of Magick/Activity: Banishing, breaking bad habits, divination, drying herbs, past life recall, clearing out everything you don’t want in the new year (habits and personal items).

Some Appropriate Goddesses: All crone and underworld Goddesses, Cerridwen (Welsh), Freya (Norse), Hecate (Greek), Morrigan (Celtic), Persephone (Greek), Rhiannon (Welsh)

Some Appropriate Gods: All old and underworld Gods, Cernunnos (Celtic), Anubis (Egyptian), Hades (Greek), Odin (Norse), Osiris (Egyptian)

Tool Blessing Ritual

Tool Blessing Ritual

A purification of objects for ritual use and their transformation into magical items.

(The area is prepared by placing a quantity of each element in the proper quarter, as well as preparing the altar in the usual way. If available, a cauldron (empty) is placed in the center of the circle.  Candles are placed at each  of the four  corners and  lit, progressing deosil  from the  east. Salt and  water are blessed, and  the celebrants are purified  with them. A magic circle is cast, and watchtowers summoned.  The god is then drawn down as follows: The priest stands before the alter in the Osiris position, arms crossed across chest and feet together.   The Priestess kneels before him with face and arms upraised.)

PS: Hephaestus, forger of magic,     descend upon this the body of thy priest and servant,     lend us the strength of your arms.     Prometheus, shape of man,     descend upon this the body of thy priest and servant,     lend us your fire and foresight.     Morpheus, weaver of dreams,     descend upon this the body of thy priest and servant,     lend us your subtlety and vision.
P: I am he, the shape-god,     forger, builder, artisan, smith.     With strength and craft I form the world.

(The Priest helps the Priestess to rise and she stands in the center of the circle in the god position, extending her arms outward and down, palms facing forward. The Priest kneels before her with head bowed.)

P: Clotho, spinner of the strand of life     Descend upon this the body of thy priestess and servant.     Lend us your wheel of making.     Hecate, caster of spells,     Descend upon this the body of thy priestess and servant.     Lend us the power of your magic.     Aphrodite, goddess of love,     Descend upon this the body of thy priestess and servant.     Grant us eros, philos, aristos, agape.
PS: I am she, the weaver-goddess,      Painter, poet, sculptor, witch.      With art and love I form the world.

(The priestess extends her hands to the priest and helps him rise. The priest cups both hands and scoops from the cauldron, then offers to the priestess.)

P: Drink now from the cauldron of Cerridwen, whose draughts bring    knowledge, peace and life.

(The priestess sips from the cupped hands, after which the priest drinks. The objects to be blessed are taken from the altar by the priest and moved widdershins to the west quarter, and immersed in the water there.)

P: Spirits of the west, in water born     In cool waters cleanse these tools     And wash from them all hurt and harm     This I ask, this charge I lay,     By oak and ash and bitter thorn.

(The objects are moved by the priestess to the south quarter and moved above the flames there.)

PS: Spirits of the south, in fire born     In shining flames purify these tools     And burn from them all impurities     This I ask, this charge I lay,     By oak and ash and bitter thorn.

(The objects are moved to the east quarter by the priest and moved through the incense smoke.)

P: Spirits of the east, in sweet air born     In swirling winds polish these tools     And sweep from them all phantasm and illusion     This I ask, this charge I lay,     By oak and ash and bitter thorn.

(The objects are moved to the altar by the priestess, and placed upon the pentacle.)

PS: Spirits of the north, in cool earth born      In mother earth ground these tools     And take from them all spirits dark     This I ask, this charge I lay,     By oak and ash and bitter thorn.

(The person consecrating the tools now offers an impromptu or prepared charge to the items, stating their purpose and mode of use.  They are then taken up by the priestess and moved to the east quarter.)

PS: Spirits of the east, from the bright air come,     Fill these tools with the swirling energies of the whirlwind     Make them float like the breeze     Spirits of air, hearken unto me,     As I do will, so more it be.

(The tools are now taken up by the priest and moved to the south quarter.)

P: Spirits of the south, from wild fire come,     Fill these tools with the burning energies of the flames     Make them glow with bright fire     Spirits of fire, hearken unto me,     As I do will, so more it be.

(The tools are now taken up by the priestess and moved to the west quarter.)

P: Spirits of the west, from soothing water come,     Fill these tools with the calming energies of the warm rain     Make them flow like the tide     Spirits of water, hearken unto me,     As I do will, so more it be.

(The tools are now taken up by the priestess and moved to the altar.)

PS: Spirits of the north, from firm earth come,     Fill these tools with the ordering energies of the growing crops     Make them flourish like grapes on the vine     Spirits of earth, hearken unto me,     As I do will, so more it be.

(The priest takes the tools from the altar and steps backwards. The priestess stands at  the altar facing south towards the priest. The priest extends his right arm in parallel to the  ground, between he and the priestess, with the tools in his hand.)

P: I am the god, ever desiring.     I am the stag in the woods,     I am the sun in the noonday sky,     I am the lover in the dark.     I offer passion, strength, devotion and the swiftness of the hunt.

(The priestess extends her right arm in like fashion, and places her hand over that of the priest.)

PS: I am the goddess, ever nurturing.     I am the tempting beauty of the maid,     I am the quiet strength of the mother,     I am the infinite wisdom of the crone.     I offer life, love, warmth and the fruitfulness of the fields.

(Both step towards each other and turn their hands and arms so the fingers point upwards with the palms facing their own chest, cupping the other’s palm between and holding the tools. They clasp each other with their left arms.)

P&PS: Male and female, yin and yang, light and dark, action and stillness.    Apart we are forever incomplete, but together we form one.    In our joining we are blessed. In our union, the limitless energy    of universe is released and captured here.
P: As I do will,
PS: As I do will
P&PS: As we do will, so mote it be.

(The priest and priestess kiss, then release grasps.  If the number and size of the tools precludes them being held in one hand simultaneously, the latter charging section should be repeated for each. The tools are replaced on the altar. Cakes and wine are blessed and consumed and a period of relaxation and rest follows. The watchtowers are then dismissed and the circle opened.)

A Witch’s Cauldron

A Witch’s Cauldron

Primary element: Water

The three-legged iron cauldron really comes into its own as an outdoor natural magickal tool. If you have a small one, it can also fit in your altar room to the northwest of the altar as it is a tool of earth and water (and also of fire, if a candle is set in it).

The cauldron is a symbol of Cerridwen, the Celtic mother Goddess, whose cauldron brought rebirth and transformation. It was originally a household cooking pot hung over black ranges and open fires in many lands and so is a reassuring and stable tool.

Goddess Of The Month

DEMETER

Goddess of grain and agriculture, pure Nourisher of youth and the green earth, health-giving cycle of life and death, and preserver of both marital fertility and the Sacred Law.

In Greek mythology, Demeter (Greek: “mother-earth” or possibly “distribution-mother” from the noun of the Indo-European mother-earth) is the goddess of grain and agriculture, the pure nourisher of youth and the green earth, the health-giving cycle of life and death, and preserver of both marital fertility and the sacred law. She is invoked as the “bringer of seasons” in the Homeric hymn, a subtle sign that she was worshiped long before the Olympians arrived. The Homeric Hymn to Demeter has been dated to sometime around the seventh century B.C.E. She and her daughter Persephone were the central figures of the Eleusinian Mysteries, which also predate the Olympian pantheon. The Roman equivalent is Ceres, from whom the word “cereal” is derived.

Demeter is easily confused with Gaia or Rhea, and with Cybele. The goddess’ epithets reveal the span of her functions in Greek life. Demeter and Kore (“the maiden”) are usually invoked as to theo (‘”The Two Goddesses”), and they appear in that form in Linear B graffiti at Mycenaean Pylos in pre-classical times. A connection with the goddess-cults of Minoan Crete is quite possible.

According to the Athenian rhetorician Isocrates, the greatest gifts that Demeter gave were cereal, which set humans apart from wild animals, and the mysteries, which give humankind higher hopes in this life and the next.

The Eleusinian Mysteries

Without a doubt, the most important role of Demeter was as a goddess of the Elusinian mystery religion. In this capacity, her primary function was to provide the cultic adherents with hope for eternal life (or a pleasant afterlife). Though little is known of the specifics of worship, it appears that it involved a hidden knowledge (gnosis) being shared by the participants:

The object of the [mystery] is to place the [participant] in a peculiarly close and privileged relation with the divinity or the deified spirit…. all of the members of the city, gens or household could freely join in the cult, if they were in the ordinary condition or ritualistic cleanliness; and the sacrifice that the priest performed for the state might be repeated by the individual, if he chose to do so, for his own purposes at his own house-altar. Both in the public and in the mystic service a sacrifice of some sort was requisite, and as far as we can see the religious conception of the sacrifice might be the same in both. But in the former the sacrifice with the prayer was the chief act in the ceremony, in the latter it was something besides the sacrifice that was of the essence of the rite; something was shown to the eyes of the initiated, something was done: thus the mystery[.]

These rites are one of the most compelling enigmas in human religious history, as the vow of secrecy that all participants were obliged to take has remained largely unbroken—meaning that many elements of these practices have been lost to the mists of time.

Demeter and Poseidon

Demeter and Poseidon’s names are linked in the earliest scratched notes in Linear B found at Mycenaean Pylos, where they appear as PO-SE-DA-WO-NE and DA-MA-TE in the context of sacralized lot-casting. The ‘DA‘ element in each of their names is seemingly connected to an Proto-Indo-European root relating to distribution of land and honors (compare Latin dare “to give”). Poseidon (his name seems to signify “consort of the distributor”) once pursued Demeter, in her archaic form as a mare-goddess. She resisted the sea king’s advances, but she could not disguise her divinity among the horses of King Onkios. Poseidon became a stallion and “covered” (read: violated) her. Demeter was literally furious (“Demeter Erinys”) at the assault, but washed away her anger in the River Ladon (“Demeter Lousia”). She bore to Poseidon a daughter, whose name could not be uttered outside the Eleusinian Mysteries, and a steed named Arion, with a black mane. In Arcadia, Demeter was worshiped as a horse-headed deity into historical times:

The second mountain, Mt. Elaios, is about 30 stades from Phigaleia, and has a cave sacred to Demeter Melaine [“Black”]… the Phigalians say, they accounted the cave sacred to Demeter, and set up a wooden image in it. The image was made in the following fashion: it was seated on a rock, and was like a woman in all respects save the head. She had the head and hair of a horse, and serpents and other beasts grew out of her head. Her chiton reached right to her feet, and she held a dolphin in one hand, a dove in the other. Why they made the xoanon like this should be clear to any intelligent man who is versed in tradition. They say they named her Black because the goddess wore black clothing. However, they cannot remember who made this xoanon or how it caught fire; but when it was destroyed the Phigalians gave no new image to the goddess and largely neglected her festivals and sacrifices, until finally barrenness fell upon the land.

Demeter, Persephone and the Eleusinian Mysteries

The central myth of Demeter, which is at the heart of the Eleusinian Mysteries, is her relationship with Persephone, her daughter through a dalliance with Zeus. In the tale, Persephone becomes the unwilling consort of Hades (Roman Pluto, the underworld god of wealth) and is taken from her mother’s side into her new spouse’s dusky kingdom. Demeter, distraught over the loss of her precious daughter, devoted the entirety of her time and attention to seeking her, which had the consequence of halting the progression of seasons. During her search, she had many additional adventures, though none of them were sufficient to distract her from her maternal concerns. Eventually, the situation on Earth grew so dire that Zeus found it necessary to intercede directly, imploring his brother to return Persephone to her mother. Before she was released, however, Hades tricked her into eating six pomegranate seeds, which forced her to return to his realm for six months each year. When Demeter and her daughter were together, the earth flourished with vegetation. But for six months each year, when Persephone returned to the underworld, the earth once again became a barren realm. This myth, in addition to providing an aetiological explanation for the progression of the seasons, also explain the connection between Demeter/Persephone and the Eleusinian Mysteries (which were centered around the achievement of eternal life).

Demeter’s stay at Eleusis

While Demeter was searching for her daughter Persephone, she found it expedient to adopt the guise of an old woman (Doso). In this form, she received a hospitable welcome from Celeus, the king of Eleusis in Attica (and also Phytalus). He asked her to nurse Demophon and Triptolemus, his sons by Metanira.

As a gift to Celeus (in thanks for his hospitality), Demeter planned to make Demophon as a god, which was achieved by coating and anointing him with Ambrosia, breathing gently upon him while holding him in her arms and bosom, and by burning away his mortal spirit in the family hearth every night. Unfortunately, Demeter was unable to complete the ritual because one night Metanira (the child’s mother) walked in and saw her son in the fire and screamed in fright. This angered the fertility goddess, who lamented that foolish mortals did not understand the power of her ritual.

Instead of making Demophon immortal, Demeter chose instead to repay her host’s generosity by teaching Triptolemus the art of agriculture. From him, the rest of Greece learned to plant and reap crops.

Portrayals of Demeter

  • Demeter is usually portrayed on a chariot, is frequently associated with images of the harvest, including flowers, fruit, and grain. She was also sometimes pictured with Persephone.
  • Demeter is not generally portrayed with a consort, though the exception is Iasion, the youth of Crete who lay with the goddess in a thrice-ploughed field and was sacrificed afterwards.
  • Demeter placed Aethon, the god of famine, in Erysichthon’s gut, making him permanently famished. This was a punishment for cutting down trees in a sacred grove.

Reference:

New World Encyclopedia