Your Daily Charm for July 28th is The Food Charm

Your Charm for Today

The Food Charm

Today’s Meaning:
Your health vibration is very high! You are energetic and feel you can accomplish anything. This aspect reflects positive vibrations due to diet. This will continue for a few weeks.

General Description:
The Lamas of Tibet encourage all sorts of magic. Their religion is a form of Buddism, introduced into Tibet about 750 A.D. It is corrupted with the worship of demons, and many curious magical beliefs. The Food Charm is used to stamp the form of their god Buddha on their food for protection against the powers of evil, and for happiness, both of the physical and spiritual body. The device shows the god Buddha probably surrounded with the emblematic circle of rice, which in Tibet means the Wheel of Life, or misfortunes roll off, and good fortune rolls on.

The Daily OM for June 15th – Eating Right to Feel Better

Eating Right to Feel Better
Fuel That Nurtures

by Madisyn Taylor

What we eat and drink can have a powerful effect on our ability to focus, mental clarity, mood, and stress levels.

At its simplest, food is fuel. Though our preferences regarding taste and texture can vary widely, we all rely on the foods we eat for energy. Most people are aware that it is vital we consume a diverse assortment of foods if we aspire to maintain a state of physical well-being. However, the intimate connection between diet and our mental well-being is less understood. Just as the nutritional components in food power the body, so too do they power the mind. Some foods can impair cognitive functioning and sap our energy while others heighten our intellectual prowess and make us feel vigorous. What we eat and drink can have a powerful effect on our ability to focus, mental clarity, mood, and stress levels.

Food allergies, which don’t always manifest themselves in forms we recognize, can also play a significant role in the maintenance of mental health. Thus, for most of us, even a simple change in diet can have a profoundly positive impact on our lives. Taking the time to explore whether anxiety, muddled thoughts, or inexplicable tension can be linked to a food allergy or food sensitivity can empower you to treat your symptoms naturally. The benefits of a healthier, more personalized diet are often felt immediately. Sugar, saturated fats, wheat, and dairy products are frequently allergens and can stress the body. For people that are allergic, consuming them can cause imbalances in the physical self that have a negative effect on the body’s ability to nourish the brain. Water, fiber, nuts, unprocessed seeds, raw fruits and vegetables, and vegetable proteins, on the other hand, support physical and mental functioning by providing those nutrients we do need without additional substances we don’t.

A balanced, natural diet can ease mood swings, panic attacks, anxiety, and mild depression. Intellectual clarity and agility is improved when the mind receives proper nourishment. Even those individuals who are blessed with the ability to consume almost any food can benefit from a healthier and simpler diet. Since the mental and physical selves are closely bound to one another, we must feed each the foods upon which they thrive.

 

Source:
The Daily OM

Daily OM for May 4th – Clearing Our System

Clearing Our System
Food Allergies

In this day and age we know so much more about our relationship to food than our predecessors, and the way we eat and think about food has become almost unrecognizable to our grandparents’ generation. One example of this is our awareness of food allergies, a condition that has recently entered the collective consciousness. Most of us know someone who is allergic to such commonplace foods as wheat and dairy, and we may even be prone to such an allergy. Understanding how our bodies react to food, and making the necessary adjustments in our diet, can have a profound effect on our whole energy system, and can be the key to shifting our mind into a state of greater clarity.

When we are continuously exposed to a food that gives us an allergic reaction, we feel lethargic, foggy-headed, or as if we always have a low-grade sinus infection. Other symptoms can include nausea, digestive difficulties, skin problems, and difficulty breathing. Many of us have been fighting these symptoms our whole lives without realizing that getting relief could be as simple as cutting a particular food out of our diet. When we do, we feel as if we are waking up out of a fog, and our whole system, cleared of substances that work against it, benefits. Many people see skin improvements, they sleep better, have more energy, and feel able to think more clearly. When we feel less than well, testing ourselves, or getting tested by someone else, for food allergies may be a good place to start.

If you know how to do kinesiology, or if you work with a pendulum or have access to clear signals from an inner guide, you can test yourself. If these modes of gaining information are unfamiliar or uncomfortable, you can get tested through a doctor of your choice. However we go about it, exploring our relationship to the foods we eat can be the first step to a more optimal state of health, well-being, and clarity of mind.

Source:
Daily OM

Secret Fantasy Sex Magick

Secret Fantasy Sex Magick

Gather together your lover, a red candle, two pieces of paper with pens to write, three  drops of honeysuckle oil, and a half cup of olive oil. Your should do this spell with your love as a way for both of you to become closer in your  relationship.
After dark, begin with your lover by lighting the candle and dedicating it to the fire of your love:

Glowing flame burning bright

Be the fire of love tonight.

Now it’s time for each of you to write down your fantasies about each other. Let your  imagination run wild. The idea is to bring the ideal and real together into not only one glorious and magnificent night, but a lifetime of  them.

Add the honeysuckle oil to the olive oil. As you do so, say:

Sweet flower of divine love

Empower this oil with your passion.

As you and your lover rub the oil all over each other’s bodies, describe your most wild  fantasies as you wrote them out on the pieces of paper. It’s up to you and your lover as to whether you want to act on them. Allow the candle to safely  burn down.

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Moon Love Potion

 Moon Love Potion

This love potion will attract the gifts of the fairies as well as fill you with moonlight, starlight and divine delight.

You will need three handfuls of dried barley grain, hot water, a teapot, roasted barley tea, and a cup. Barley tea is great for getting your body in shape. It’s refreshing and cooling, and encourages harmony.

After dark, go outdoors and sprinkle two handfuls of the dried barley grain on the ground, one handful outside your front door and one handful outside your back door. Barley attracts fairy favors and gifts. As you sprinkle the barley in small clockwise circles, chant:

“Love, love, love, moon circles for the blessed fae.”

Go back indoors and heat the water. Pour boiling water into the teapot filled with a handful of roasted barley. Let the tea steep for about ten minutes. Pour a cup of tea, and slowly sip it. Before each sip, repeat:

“Love, love, love potion fill me with moonlight love, love, love potion fill me with starlight love, love, love potion fill me with divine delight So be it! Blessed be!”

Return any leftover tea to the earth. As you do say:

“Love, love, love blessed fae, Blessed be!”

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A Little Humor for Your Day – Elderly Couple Anniversary

Elderly Couple Anniversary

An old couple celebrates their 50th wedding anniversary in their home.

“Just think,” the old man says, “we were sitting here at this same breakfast table, naked as jaybirds, 50 years ago.”

“Well,” the old lady snickers, “what do you say — should we get naked?”

The two immediately strip to the buff and sit back down at the table. “You know, honey,” the little old lady says slyly, “My breasts burn for you now as they did 50 years ago.”

“I’m not surprised,” replies the old man. “One’s in your coffee and the other is in your oatmeal!”

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A Little Humor For Your Day – ’21 Reasons Why Chocolate is Better Than Sex, lol!’

Twenty Reasons Why Chocolate Is Better Than Sex

1) You can GET chocolate.

2) Chocolate satisfies even when it has gone soft.

3) You can safely have chocolate while you are driving.

4) You can make chocolate last as long as you want it to.

5) You can have chocolate even in front of your mother.

6) If you bite the nuts too hard the chocolate won’t mind.

7) The word “commitment” doesn’t scare off chocolate.

8) You can have chocolate on top of your workbench/desk during working hours without upsetting your co-workers.

10) You can ask a stranger for chocolate without getting your face slapped.

11) You don’t get hairs in your mouth with chocolate.

14) With chocolate there’s no need to fake it.

15) Chocolate doesn’t make you pregnant.

16) You can have chocolate at anytime of the month.

17) Good chocolate is easy to find.

18) You can have as many kinds of chocolate as you can handle.

19) You are never too young or too old for chocolate.

20) When you have chocolate it does not keep your neighbors awake.

21) With chocolate size doesn’t matter.

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The Witches Spell for Jan. 4th – Honey Jar & Candle Spell

Witchy Comments & Graphics

Honey Jar & Candle Spell

This magic spell can be worked on anyone’s name you want to sweeten. Depending on what relationship the person has to you, what special items you put into the name-packet, the colour of candle you choose, and the oil you dress it with, this trick will cause the person you name to like you more, to love you more, to favour your petition, to want to help you, to be sympathetic to your cause, or to forgive any wrongs you have committed. It can be used to influence and sweeten a judge in a court case, a loan officer at the bank, a boss from whom you want a raise, a teacher in your school from whom you want a good grade, a lover with whom you want a reconciliation, an in-law who has been back-biting you, or friend who has cut you off because of a foolish quarrel.

The following ingredients are needed
a jar of sweetener (see below)
a piece of paper
a pen
optional herbs, curios, and/or bodily concerns (see below)
a candle (choose the appropriate colour at the candle magic page)
a candle-dressing oil such as Special Oil No. 20 or Love Me oil

Get a small jar of sweetener. This can be honey, Karo Syrup, Crystal Syrup, home-made brown sugar syrup, Log Cabin Syrup, Vermont maple syrup, Bre’r Rabbit Blackstrap Molasses or whatever you desire — as long as it is in a container with a metal lid. You can buy the goods in a pint-size glass Mason jar or pour the sweetening of your choice into a jar of your own at home. All that matters is that it should be a short, squat jar with a metal lid, filled up to the shoulder of the jar.

In the old days, when skin colour was a lot more important to people than it is now, it was recommended that the colour of the sweetener match the skin of the person you wanted to sweeten. Thus, for a white judge, you might use Crystal Syrup, and for a Latino loan officer you might use light brown sugar syrup, and for a dark-skinned lover you might use Bre’r Rabbit Blackstrap Molasses. Frankly, these days specifying a person’s skin colour is not as meaningful as it once was (for which we can all be thankful), and today many folks prefer to use honey for the spell, no matter what the target’s skin colour is, because it is a natural sweetener and not man-made. I believe that if you just follow your own intuition and decide which sweetener you like the best, you can be confident that you have made the right choice.

Next, prepare your paper. Again, in the old days, we would be told to use white paper for a white person, tan paper for a high-brown, and rough old grocery-bag paper for a person of dark colour, but these days the type of paper you use can simply be a matter of personal style. I use the smooth, tan-coloured light-weight shopping bag paper because that is my choice, based on the way i was taught, which was that such paper is “pure paper” and better than parchment from the art-supply store. I prepare my paper by tearing it neatly on all four sides so there is no machine-cut edge. Of course some folks prefer parchment paper more, and they trim it square with scissors — and the spell still works for them. So go ahead and prepare your paper just as you wish and that will suffice.

Once you have got your paper together, write the person’s name three times on it, one name under the other like so

John Russell Brown John Russell Brown John Russell Brown Then you rotate the paper 90 degrees and write your own name across the person’s name, also three times: Abigail Samantha Little Abigail Samantha Little Abigail Samantha Little The result will be that the two names are crossed over each other, like a cross or a tic-tac-toe grid, and the other person’s name will be under yours. This is called crossing and covering their name. If the sweetening is being done for love, you can use a red ink pen. Otherwise, the colour of the ink does not matter. Now all around the crossed names, write your specific wish in a circle. If you need a guideline, lightly sketch the circle-shape with a pencil and then follow around it when writing with your ink pen. You must write your wish in one continuous run of script letters, with no spaces — AND WITHOUT LIFTING YOUR PEN FROM THE PAPER. Do not cross your t’s or dot your i’s. Just write the words in one run and be sure to join up the end of the last word with the beginning of the first word so the circle is complete. Then you can go back and cross your t’s and dot your i’s. To make it easy to connect the word together at the end, i have found it best to make my petition in the form of short commands, such as “help me favour me help me favour me” or “love me love me love me” or “forgive me come back forgive me come back.”

If you make a mistake — for instance, if you lift your pen in the middle of writing your petition-circle — throw away the paper and start it all over again. You want it to be perfect.

Other ingredients can be added to the name-paper if you wish — a piece of court case root for a court case spell, two rose petals for a love spell, a lump of sugar for a family member, two clove buds for friendship, bayberry root or sassafras root for a money spell, a pair of Adam-and-Eve roots for love, two small Lodestones for sexuality, a pinch of deer’s tongue leaves for a proposal of marriage, a square of camphor for cleaning out bad things of the past, and so forth.

If you are sweetening someone for love, then in addition to the name-paper and whatever optional herbs, roots, or minerals you choose, you must also get one of the person’s hairs and one of your hairs. If the hairs are long enough, tie them together. Otherwise, just lay them crosswise to each other. In either case, place them on the name-paper. Don’t ask me what to do if you can’t get their hairs ’cause i can’t help with that. Either work the spell without the hairs and expect a much lower rate of success or get the hairs! Don’t load the paper up with lots of other stuff thinking that if you can’t get the hairs that six different love-herbs and two lodestones will be as strong as two hairs. They won’t be.

Fold the paper toward you to bring what you want your way and speak aloud your wish as you do so. Turn the paper and fold it again, and again, always folding toward you, to bring what you want your way. Speak aloud your wish each time you fold the paper toward you. Fold it until it will not fold any more.

Open the jar of honey or syrup. To make room for the folded paper packet, you will need to eat some of the contents. Take out a spoon’s worth, and as you eat it, say, “As this honey [or syrup] is sweet to me, so will i become sweet to John Russell Brown [or the name of the person you are working this on].” You can do this three times — taking out three small spoonsful of sweetener and speaking your wish aloud each time. Push the folded paper packet down into the jar and close up the lid.

Dress an offertory candle (a 50 cent, 6″ long candle or a 25 cent 4″ long one, nothing fancy) with an appropriate anointing oil, or use Special Oil No. 20, which is specifically indicated in this type of spell. Use a white candle for general blessing and healing, a red one for sexual love, a pink one for reconciliation, a brown one for a court case, and so forth. (For a longer list of colour symbolism, see the page on candle magic.)

Stand the candle on the lid of the closed-up jar and light it. You can melt the candle to the lid with hot wax if need be.

Let the candle burn all the way out. Do this every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, for as long as it takes. Add teach new candle on top of the remains of the last one. I have seen people’s syrup-jar spells like this done for court cases that were continued for so long and required so many candles that you could not see the jar under all the dripped-on wax!

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Daily OM for February 3 – Redefining health

Redefining Health
Throw Away Your Scale

by Madisyn Taylor

No matter what our weight, we can use the cues from our physical and mental selves to judge how healthy we are.

Health is not a numerical concept and cannot be defined using statistics. Human beings, however, tend to want to quantify well-being into easily understandable figures. We feel compelled to ascribe numbers to every aspect of wellness, from the qualities of our food to our f

itness levels to the physical space we occupy. As a consequence of social pressures, we turn our attention away from health and focus instead on the most contentious of these figures—weight—checking our scales to see how we measure up to our peers and role models. Yet each of us is equipped to gauge our relative healthfulness without any equipment whatsoever. When we have achieved a state of wellness, we feel buoyant and energetic. Some of us are naturally slim, while others will always be curvy. No matter what our weight, we can use the cues we receive from our physical and mental selves to judge how healthy we really are.

When you throw away your scale, you commit to a lifestyle that honors the innate wisdom that comes from within your body and within your mind. It is logical to examine how you feel while considering your health—a strong, fit, and well-nourished individual will seldom feel heavy, bloated, or fatigued. If you have concerns regarding your weight, remind yourself that at its proper weight, your body will feel buoyant and agile. Movement becomes a source of joy. Sitting, standing, walking, and bending are all easy to do because your joints and organs are functioning as they were meant to. When you are physically healthy, your mind will also typically occupy a place of well-being. Mental clarity and an ability to focus are two natural traits of whole-self health. Surprisingly, promoting this type of easy-to-discern wellness within yourself takes no special effort outside of satisfying your hunger with nourishing, wholesome foods and moving your body.

The numbers you see on the scale, while nominally informative, can prevent you from reaching your healthful eating goals by giving you a false indicator of health. You will know when you have achieved true health because every fiber of your being will send you signals of wellness. When you choose to listen to these signals instead of relying on the scale, your definition of well-being will be uniquely adapted to the needs of your body and of your mind.

Daily OM

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Food Blessings, Pagan and Wiccan Style

Food Blessings, Pagan and Wiccan Style

By , About.com

Christianity doesn’t have a monopoly on saying a prayer over food and drink. Many religions celebrate the consumption of food with some sort of prayer of thanksgiving. Many Pagans and Wiccans believe that not only should we thank the gods for our food, but also the earth and the food itself. After all, if you’re eating plants or meat, something had to die so that you could have a meal. It seems rude not to thank your food for its sacrifice.

Any of the following may be said over a meal, a Cakes and Ale ceremony, or any other event where food is served. Feel free to include the names of the deities of your tradition, of you prefer.

  • This Simple Meal Blessing offers thanks to the God and Goddess for a meal.
  • A Prayer to the Earth shows gratitude for the planet’s bounty.
  • If you’re eating a meal that once walked around, offer a prayer Celebrating Meal.
  • Invite the Gods to dine with you.
  • Make an Offering of a bit of your food.
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In The Honor Of Hecate – Hecate Blessing Rite

Witchy Cat Graphics & Comments
Hecate Blessing Rite

Items You Will Need:

An altar or small table covered with a black cloth

One black candle

A glass or chalice filled with red wine

Patchouli incense

A plate filled with bread

Goat cheese

Smoked fish

The Wheel of Hecate symbol (pictured) inscribed with silver ink on black card stock (the wheel should be the size of a dessert or small dinner plate.)

To begin the rite, light the black candle as you say:

Mistress of Magick,
Great Hecate,
Let your Light
Now lead the way.
 

Set the plate of food on top of the Wheel of Hecate. Hold your hands over the food and ask Hecate to bless it as follows:

I summon thee by Witches Rune,
Waxing light and Waning Moon.
With the turning of the tide,
All that’s past be laid aside.
Threefold Goddess of the night,
Bless me from the shadows light.
Banish now all trouble and fear,
Bring me happiness for all the year.
 

You will now want to bless the wine by holding your hands over the chalice or glass of wine as you say:

Let now the knowledge of the light,
Bring me wisdom and inner sight.
For all that was, has now passed away,
That new beginnings shall come my way.
 

In honor of Hecate, eat a portion of food and drink some of the wine. Take a few moments to reflect on the rite, and then extinguish the black candle as you say:

O glorious Hecate your are my power
Bless me my Lady from this hour.
 

To ensure that Hecate will bless you in the coming year, you must now take the remaining food and wine to the nearest crossroads and leave it. Place the food in the center of the crossroads and pour the wine over it. As you do this, ask Hecate to bless you. When you return home, clear the altar, and hang the Wheel of Hecate over your altar or bed.

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Witchcraft, Ethics and the Role of Animals in Society

Witchcraft, Ethics and the Role of Animals in Society

Author:   Skye of the Hallowed Grove 

Witchcraft is more than a religion; it is a magickal way of life that encourages living with compassion and tolerance toward all of Earth’s creatures and working to heal and protect the environment as well as ourselves. We acknowledge that we are part of the great web of life, and this interconnection extends to all beings.

Our daily lives are intertwined with not only other human beings, but with the animal kingdom and the Land as well. Without this relationship to animals and the Land, our civilization would not exist as we know it. As Witches, it is our moral obligation as protectors of our planet to speak out against injustices towards other living things and our environment.

The Role of Animals In Society

In the pre-history of civilization, our ancestors were nomadic hunters and gatherers. As agriculture and the domestication of animals developed, small clans were able to merge into larger communities. Domesticated animals played an essential role in these communities, providing labor in the fields, meat and milk for the table, and skins for protection against the elements. The herds were protected and cherished, because man’s survival was dependant upon them. In the warmer months, crops were plentiful but in the harsh Winter months, the fields were fallow and communities relied heavily on meat and animal products to sustain them until the next growing season. The history of Imbolc is a classic example of the reliance on ewe’s milk for survival during Winter.

When animals were slaughtered for food it was done with great respect for the life taken. Many cultures would offer prayers of gratitude to the spirit of the animal. Ritual animal sacrifice was not uncommon during this period. These sacrifices were not senseless acts of violence but reverent ceremonies where the most prized and valued animals were offered to deity in exchange for something considered as having higher value – namely, favors and blessings for the community’s prosperity and well-being. These animals were extremely well cared for, as only “perfect specimens” could be sacrificed.

The method of sacrifice required a quick and humane slaughter (which was most likely far less traumatic than methods used in commercial slaughter today) . If the animal cried out, flinched or otherwise showed fear (“unwillingness”) , the sacrifice was considered null and void.

We won’t argue that throughout the history of mankind, some ancient civilizations were notorious for animal mistreatment, much of which was purely for sport. However, rural communities for the most part, were much more concerned with the welfare of their livestock.

Centuries passed and communities grew larger as human populations increased. Beginning in the eighteenth century, agriculture made improvements in farming techniques, which allowed for improved yields, which in turn supported the urbanization of the population during the Industrial Revolution. People migrated from the countryside and moved into large cities, distancing themselves from the Land that sustained them.

In the late nineteenth century, there was a movement towards mass production in industry, causing another surge in urban settlement. This again meant more people to feed, with fewer farmers to supply the food. As a result, the agricultural industry had to begin adopting the same mass production techniques that lead to the demand for more food. At this point in history, meat and animal products were not only considered a necessity for health and survival, but also an economic commodity.

Factory Farms and Animals

To meet ever-increasing demands for animal products, factory farms began to emerge. The first animals to be factory farmed were chickens. The discovery of vitamins and their role in animal nutrition, in the first two decades of the twentieth century, led to vitamin supplements, which in 1920s America allowed chickens to be raised indoors. In 1960’s America, pigs and cows began to be raised on factory farms. This innovation then spread to Western Europe.

The concept of the family farm, where animals had pasture to graze and room to exercise their natural behaviors, gave way to large-scale commercial operations whose sole purpose was mass production of meat and animal products. The well-being of the animals was no longer a priority. Family farms simply could not compete economically with these factories.

Today, there are now nearly five million fewer farms in the U.S. than there were in the 1930’s. Of the two million remaining farms, only 565, 000 are family operations. (1.)

Yes, the government now imposes rules and guidelines for factory farms to follow, but the sheer volume and speed at which animals are processed makes these rules difficult to enforce, and the result is extreme suffering for the animals. The factory workers themselves often become desensitized to the violence and suffering they witness and inflict on a day-to-day basis.

We find it rather ironic that society today shudders at the thought of ritual animal sacrifice in ancient cultures, when the widespread exploitation and inhumane treatment of animals in modern society is met with such indifference.

Disregard for factory farm animals persists because few realize the ways in which these animals are mistreated, and even fewer actually witness the abuse. Once aware, most Witches are appalled, not only because they support animal rights, but because they also know that animals feel pain and that morally decent human beings should try to prevent pain whenever possible.

Most of us are also completely unaware that the dairy and egg industry also contribute to an enormous amount of exploitation and suffering. Everyone should have an understanding of where their food comes from and how it was handled from farm to table. Earthlings and Food Inc. are two excellent documentaries that chronicle man’s relationship to animals and the animal farming industry.

Factory Farms and the Environment

The livestock from factory farms are major contributors of greenhouse gas emissions, which are thought to be responsible for global warming. They are also major contributors of ammonia emissions, which contribute significantly to acid rain and acidification of ecosystems. The term “livestock” refers to all farmed animals, including pigs, birds raised for meat, egg-laying hens, and dairy cows.

Livestock are also key players in increased water use, accounting for over 8% of global water use, mostly for the irrigation of feed crops. Factory farms are probably the largest source of water pollution, contributing to “dead” zones in coastal areas, destruction of coral reefs, human health problems and the emergence of antibiotic resistance. The major sources of pollution are from animal wastes, antibiotics and hormones, chemicals from tanneries, fertilizers and pesticides used for feed crops, and sediments from eroded pastures. (2.)

Thankfully, with the renewed interest in organic farming and agricultural sustainability, family farms are beginning to make a comeback. I’m sure most Witches would agree that this is at least a step in the right direction for ensuring better conditions for farm animals and the Earth as well.

Every Life Counts

Regarding other sentient beings as objects or property for the sole purpose of serving mankind is ethically questionable. So is attaching a value to the life of other species based on their differences from humans. This is known as speciesism, which is a form of prejudice and discrimination against non-humans. A double standard also exists in society regarding the preferential treatment of pets and the inconsequential treatment of farm and laboratory animals. If anything, we owe farm and laboratory animals a great deal of gratitude for their service to humanity.

The mainstream religious view is that animals were put on this Earth to serve mankind. This view may also be shared by some Pagan belief systems. A common theme in defending speciesism is the argument that humans “have the right to compete with and exploit other species to preserve and protect the human species”. Witches should examine these statements before accepting them outright.

Witchcraft, as a religion, does not take an ethical stance on whether slaughter and the consumption or use of animal products is morally right or wrong. Witchcraft does however, object to the exploitation, disrespect and inhumane treatment of the Earth and Her creatures. We realize that Witches may have differing views regarding the role animals play in our lives, but animal mistreatment is unacceptable no matter what view you support. Of course, it is up to the individual Witch to ultimately decide for themselves what is morally right and what is wrong.

Witches have always believed in our interconnection with all of creation (both physical and spiritual) , and with new insights into quantum mechanics, science is now suggesting that this interaction of energy and matter occurs at the sub-atomic level and perhaps even beyond into levels of pure consciousness. In light of this new paradigm, do we really want to be consuming fear, pain and unimaginable suffering, or even supporting it on any level? If we know what is going on, and we continue to do so, aren’t we just as morally accountable as the individuals who are inflicting such suffering? Animal exploitation and cruelty doesn’t just apply to the food industry, it extends to the clothing, pet and entertainment industries as well.

Do your karma a favor and do not support these industries, and educate others about these issues as well. Reducing (or ultimately eliminating) our consumption or use of animal products, and/or purchasing organic and local food when possible, is a realistic and attainable goal for anyone who is willing to commit to it. We may not be able to stop the abuse completely, but together we can all make a difference in reducing the suffering of animals and the destruction of our planet.

Veganism, The Compassionate Choice

Fortunately, with all the technological advancements in agriculture, a better understanding of nutrition and supplementation, and a wider variety of organic and plant-based food options available, consumption of animal products is no longer a necessity for health or survival. Individuals can now make an alternative choice as to how they wish to nourish themselves.

Strict vegetarianism, or veganism, as it is more commonly known, is a lifestyle option for modern Witches who are concerned with animal rights and animal welfare; the ethics of factory farming; the environmental and social benefits of organic farming and agricultural sustainability; and holistic wellness. Veganism promotes the health and well-being of both the individual and the planet.

For Witches who embrace a vegan lifestyle for ethical reasons, this could be considered as taking the “harm none” concept of the Rede to the next level. In this context, the Rede might be literally understood as meaning: do not cause intentional harm to anyone or anything and, to the best of your ability, avoid participation in the intentional harm of anyone or anything. “Harm none” basically refers to the intent, and under these circumstances the intent would be the reduction of suffering and the preservation of life.

There’s no doubt that veganism can be a challenge initially. It involves a complete lifestyle change and this change can be overwhelming for some. But it is not an impossible or difficult lifestyle and with time it becomes second nature. It does, however, require education, commitment and practice.

Witches work very hard at taking ultimate responsibility and control over their own lives and this can be an excellent exercise in self-empowerment, as well as a magickal and very rewarding experience. This is the essence of magick – causing change in conformity with Will.

________________________________

Footnotes:
1. sustainabletable.org
2. veganoutreach.org

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Let’s Talk Witch – Herbal Preparations

Witchy Comments & Graphics

Let’s Talk Witch – Herbal Preparations

An herbalist’s definition of an herb differs from that of a botanist. The botanist defines an herbaceous plant as one with a fleshy stem that dies back in the winter. The herbalist, however, considers all medicinal and cosmetic plants as <!=-1″>herbs. This broad definition of <!=-1″>herbs includes trees, shrubs, mushrooms, lichens and, of course, fruits and vegetables that have medicinal properties. In many of my recipes, you will find items that you consider food rather than herbs, such as apple juice or <!=214″>shiitake mushrooms.

There are countless different herbs and combinations of herbs that are used for health and healing. But even the most potent herb can become worthless if not properly prepared. Fortunately, there are only a few basic kinds of preparations that are used in treating illnesses and wounds herbally; these are the delivery systems for the healing powers of <!=-1″>herbs.

These preparations transform dried or fresh herbs into something that can be taken internally, such as a tea or capsule, or applied externally, as in a skin salve or a massage oil. In many cases, more than one preparation is applicable for a specific treatment.

Some preparations, such as tinctures and body oils, can be made from either fresh or dried <!=-1″>herbs. The best method for extracting an herb’s properties varies from herb to herb. For example, <!=222″>Saint-John’s-wort, oat berries and <!=99″>feverfew lose most of their properties when dried. A significant portion of the <!=-59″>essential oils in fragrant herbs such as <!=183″>peppermint and <!=61″>chamomile is lost in even the most careful drying process. On the other hand, herbs that contain a great deal of water-<!=75″>comfrey and <!=54″>calendula flowers, for example-are sometimes best when used in dried form; otherwise, the final product will be too diluted.

Whenever one type of preparation is better than another to treat a specific condition, the reason is explained in that chapter. For example, if an <!=13″>aloe vera lotion is better for a burn than a salve is, you will find out why this is so.

Most of these preparations can be bought ready-made from natural food stores-either as individual herbs or in blends of several different herbs. If you feel ambitious enough to make your own concoctions, I have also provided a number of recipes. When deciding which preparation is the most suitable for you, consider availability, cost, convenience and, of course, effectiveness.

Many herbal recipes will use as their basic ingredient not herbs, but <!=-59″>essential oils derived from <!=-1″>herbs. These oils carry many medicinal properties of the herbs from which they are extracted. They are easy to use but are also highly concentrated, so they must be diluted and used moderately to prevent overdoses. As a result, they are mostly used externally, and appropriate cautions are given throughout this book. Do not confuse <!=-59″>essential oils with vegetable oils such as olive oil, which are used as carrier oils in skin products.

Treatments are divided into internal preparations and external preparations, as the nature of the ailment generally determines the nature of the treatment.

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Daily OM for January 27th – Fuel that Nurtures

Fuel that Nurtures

Eating Right to Feel Better

by Madisyn Taylor

What we eat and drink can have a powerful effect on our ability to focus, mental clarity, mood, and stress levels.

At its simplest, food is fuel. Though our preferences regarding taste and texture can vary widely, we all rely on the foods we eat for energy. Most people are aware that it is vital we consume a diverse assortment of foods if we aspire to maintain a state of physical well-being. However, the intimate connection between diet and our mental well-being is less understood. Just as the nutritional components in food power the body, so too do they power the mind. Some foods can impair cognitive functioning and sap our energy while others heighten our intellectual prowess and make us feel vigorous. What we eat and drink can have a powerful effect on our ability to focus, mental clarity, mood, and stress levels.

Food allergies, which don’t always manifest themselves in forms we recognize, can also play a significant role in the maintenance of mental health. Thus, for most of us, even a simple change in diet can have a profoundly positive impact on our lives. Taking the time to explore whether anxiety, muddled thoughts, or inexplicable tension can be linked to a food allergy or food sensitivity can empower you to treat your symptoms naturally. The benefits of a healthier, more personalized diet are often felt immediately. Sugar, saturated fats, wheat, and dairy products are frequently allergens and can stress the body. For people that are allergic, consuming them can cause imbalances in the physical self that have a negative effect on the body’s ability to nourish the brain. Water, fiber, nuts, unprocessed seeds, raw fruits and vegetables, and vegetable proteins, on the other hand, support physical and mental functioning by providing those nutrients we do need without additional substances we don’t.

A balanced, natural diet can ease mood swings, panic attacks, anxiety, and mild depression. Intellectual clarity and agility is improved when the mind receives proper nourishment. Even those individuals who are blessed with the ability to consume almost any food can benefit from a healthier and simpler diet. Since the mental and physical selves are closely bound to one another, we must feed each the foods upon which they thrive.

The Daily OM

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Daily Feng Shui News for Jan. 24th – ‘Compliment Day’

I’d like to share a tasty recipe that will have everyone eating of your hands during today’s ‘Compliment Day.’ My passion for all things culinary has driven me to spend much time over the last twenty years studying the magic inherent in food, and there is one recipe that I repeat on a fairly regular basis because of its promise and time tested positive results. This recipe comes from ancient Indian texts and will the compliments coming right at you. You need a small amount of saffron, milk and some sliced almonds. Mix the almonds and some of the saffron together and then boil them in the milk. The lore surrounding this secret recipe says that whoever drinks it will be blessed and think only sweet thoughts while saying only sweet words. So go ahead and be generous with your compliments towards everyone else, but if there’s a special someone you’ve been waiting to hear sweet nothings from: got milk?

By Ellen Whitehurst for Astrology.com

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