Let’s Talk Witch – The Crone


Egyptian Comments & Graphics

The Crone

 

 

In the mundane world, when people use the word crone, they usually envision a shriveled old woman, bent and wrinkled. It is not a compliment. If you’re a woman and you overhear your blind date referring to you on his cell phone as an old crone, feel free to hit him with your purse. Hard.

But in the Pagan world, the world crone has a completely different meaning. Well, three meanings, actually.

The first meaning is the one that most of us might think of automatically-the crone as the representation of the third embodiment of the triple goddess: maiden, mother, and crone. When the goddess is in her crone guise (such as at Samhain), she has reached the end of the year and the end of a cycle. Wrinkled she may be, but also wise and revered. And as Pagans, we know that eventually this phase too will pass, and the goddess will come around again as maiden, young and beautiful.

The word crone is also used to indicate age and honor in the practice of Witchcraft. A crone is a woman (sorry, guys, but there is no male equivalent-I guess you’ll just have to settle for being called “that old, wise Pagan dude”) who has practiced the Craft for many years and has attained much wisdom and experience along the way. To be called a crone in this context really is a compliment, a term of respect and honor. Personally, I look forward to the day when I am called a crone!

Crone can also be an indication of the stage of a woman’s life. Once a witchy woman has hit menopause (or it has hit her), she is no longer considered to be in the mother stage of her life and has moved on to the status of crone.

Despite what you might think, this is not a bad thing.

Remember that it is only in our modern world that “old” has become a bad word. In days gone by, the older generation was more often looked up to and admired for their knowledge and their wisdom. The Pagan community as a whole is much more likely to still do so.

So if you are a woman of a certain age, enjoy being a crone. Rather than bemoan what you have lost (remember, it will all come along again in your next life), rejoice at when you have gained—wisdom and knowledge and the ability to lord them over the younger generation. Be proud to be a crone; you’ve earned it!

 

 

Everyday Witch A to Z: An Amusing, Inspiring & Informative Guide to the Wonderful World of Witchcraft

Deborah Blake

 

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August 2015 Astro-Energy Report

August 2015 Astro-Energy Report

Small Acts of Great Power

‘Gently does it’ is probably the best advice for the coming month, not to be confused with ‘don’t do anything’, which is most definitely not! There’s much to be done throughout August, as we initiate action on some of our recent plans, aided by Mercury, Jupiter and then the Sun entering Virgo, remedying a lack of earth energy since mid May. After a rather intense end to July with a powerful full moon that confronted us with some uncensored truths, August may begin to feel like something of a ‘back down to earth with a bump’ month! If you love to be proactive and focused you’ll be in your element. If, however, your tendency is more to enjoy the dream but stop short of engaging with the mundane world to make it a reality, this month may come as something of a challenge. It won’t however, be an impossible challenge, and we all have cosmic support to take effective action and make progress, the only issue being will we make the effort or find an excuse not to?!

Uranus and Chiron begin an alignment at the start of this month which continues until February of next year, one in the first sign of the zodiac (Uranus in Aries) and the other in the last (Chiron in Pisces). There exists great hope in this alliance, even though many may overlook it in favour of more dramatic cosmic affairs! It whispers of new beginnings born of hard won wisdom. As it works away in the background, gently reminding us that whatever comes to an end in this time clears space for new life, it illuminates the importance of a willingness to let go of our wounds rather than become them, to remove the hooks of past hurts allowing them to gradually dissolve.

Given the length of this alliance it’s only just gaining ground this month, laying the foundations for healing to come. If we feel so inclined, a stated commitment – in ritual or prayer, infront of our mirror or simply to the skies above – that we’re on board with this release of hurt, will help claim our place in the collective healing to come. But remember, as with all things, our will is paramount. An injured limb does not return to full health by doing nothing, but through gradual and graded exercise as it regains strength. We are the same. Healing requires a willingness to try taking the weight of life on the parts where our wounds used to be, strengthening them bit by bit, not hiding them away for fear of their vulnerability.

2nd August sees Saturn station direct in Scorpio, signalling the final few weeks of its passage through the emotional waters of our darkest shadows. It’s been quite a ride for many since it entered Scorpio in October 2012, churning up those things we’d sooner avoid and confronting us with the consequences of having done so for too long. Between now and mid September it offers one more chance to act on what we’ve learned about ourselves and commit to breaking the habits that underpin avoidance in the first place. No matter how squeamish we may be about addressing such challenging issues, the consequences of not doing so are much more difficult in the long run. It takes courage and fortitude but allows for a freer and more authentic existence. Facing head on those things we’d prefer to avoid allows life itself to support us through the subsequent healing, rather than our forging on alone as we struggle to keep it all under wraps. Throughout this month we have the opportunity to shed light into the darker corners of our psyche where still may lurk thoughts and feelings, fears and foreboding we’d just as soon avoid. And given the nascent alliance between Uranus and Chiron, it’s very timely that we do so!

Jupiter’s arrival in Virgo on 11th August signals a significant shift of focus: it’s time to stop imagining, hoping, wishing, planning and start doing, even if we only take baby steps toward a distant goal. Jupiter in Virgo delights in the minutiae that form a coherent whole. It sees each tiny part of creation as a precious jewel, perfect in itself as much as it is part of something greater. This needs to be our attitude, for the necessary actions now are equally small but precious. This is not a time of bold acts and risky undertakings but of gradual, step by step activity that furthers our aims piece by piece. It’s important we don’t allow apparent insignificance to fool us, for every adjustment, every nuance right now paves the path ahead.

The New Moon in Leo on 14th is a personal Moon with a collective message: we each have a role to play in furthering the thrust of conscious evolution, but we play that role in the intricacies of our own individual lives. It’s all too easy to forget that small acts carry great power, especially when our attention is taken up with life’s daily demands. This Moon reminds us that everything we do, each thought, word and intention, matters more than we can possibly imagine. It challenges us to step off the habitual tracks of the mind to break any cycles of negativity, victim-consciousness or just plain old hopelessness that may threaten to keep us stuck in past pain and old fears best released.

A square to Saturn from the Sun between 18th and 25th helps out with this, even though it may not feel like it at the time! It is more vital than ever that we strike a balance between personal fulfilment and the responsibilities that come with incarnation on this awesome planet which houses seven billion people and countless other species and life forms. As more planets approach Virgo, and Saturn speaks, we’re reminded it’s not all about us, as much as our individual lives may seem to be. Without listening in to Mother Nature, to the planet itself, to the cosmos, the elements and their echoes within our own hearts we cannot know what to do or how to act. Not really. If all our decisions are made solely from a subjectively individualistic point of view we will reap only individualistic results, separated from the whole and existing in a vacuum which fails to nourish in the long run. Virgo seeks to serve and Saturn nods in agreement, knowing that the most heartfelt service offers the most profound satisfaction, freeing the heart and mind to honour the greater good.

Once the Sun enters Virgo on 23rd we may be so absorbed in the tasks at hand we forget to look up at the world around us, which is why an alliance between the Sun and the North Node reminds us to do so. Balance is the watchword here, affirming that we can only live effectively in this world if we remember to gaze upon it in all its beauty and majesty, not allowing ourselves to be so absorbed with doing that being is lost. Mother Earth is our guide and the heavens along with her. If we stop and listen in the midst of our hectic lives we will hear her whispers on the breeze and her roar in the wind. Soft rain or bird song becomes the sound of our soul coming home. In a world where competition is king and we are told enemies are everywhere, this passage of the Sun through Virgo reminds us that everyone doing their part is far more effective than each pursuing their own personal powerbase from which to dictate events. With Venus retrograding through Leo throughout this month, we must remember that isolationism divorces us from the flow of abundance that shapes our world, as does fear of the other. We need each other to survive, like it or not. We cannot do it alone. Nor can we place ourselves at the mercy of others and still live a fulsome life. It is in the tension of this paradox that we must live each day right now, finding the balance between nurturing interdependence and nourishing self-sufficiency.

Mercury’s entry into Libra on 27th supports mutual understanding and exploration of the very dynamics which keep our relationships alive or condemn them to the scrap heap of misunderstanding and discord. Conjunct the North Node at this point, Mercury reminds us once again of the creative potential alive at the heart of every relationship we have, every connection we make, no matter how small or seemingly inconsequential. A brief exchange with a stranger can make or break their day; a harsh word spoken in haste can do lasting damage in the blink of an eye. We owe each other a duty of kindness and compassion, support and understanding. The more people that can embrace this duty, fulfilling it whenever possible, the deeper flows the vibrant bond which connects us all. The challenge of relationship is often exactly this: to create a space in which we can all make mistakes and mess up, be forgiven and loved enough to start over once again.

The Full Moon in Pisces on 29th raises the issue of commitment and where we choose to invest ours. Do our choices enslave us to the tiny self or align us with the higher one? Do we honour the collective as we forge our path ahead or seek only to suit ourselves? And how do we bridge the gap between personal and ultimate truths which may contradict each other? We each live an individual life which only we can know from the inside. Simultaneously we are a small cog in the mighty machine of becoming. How we balance these roles, where we decide to dig in our heels or give ground, insist or submit, is key to the coming months during which we can bring into greater alignment our individual orientation with the greater one of unity-consciousness.

As Neptune opposes the Sun at the month’s end, the heavens remind us that relinquishment of personal desire can be an act of martyrdom which binds us or liberation which forever sets us free. Discerning one from the other is vital to our well-being and the longevity of our commitment to awakening. We are here to live, love and laugh as much as to confront life’s challenges. Our world is changing, poised on the brink, as are we. To shift with those changes, to become their very essence, is what it means to awaken. In doing so we can embrace both our uniquely individual perspective and our place in the ever-changing collage of humanity.

September will be one of the most powerful months of 2015. As we approach it, the decisions we make and priorities we honour will reverberate throughout our future, gathering influence and pace. Thus do we further (or not!) conscious evolution, not as an act of super-human will but of enduring commitment to a world in which life is respected, wisdom honoured and the quality of our presence is more important than a sprint to the finish line. We are in this for the long haul, not to get this awakening over and done with so we can get on with our lives! Our lives are awakening. They are evolution. So are we, in our very essence and to our very core. Don’t be fooled by the gentle hum of August, the tiny steps of seeming insignificance. Each and every one carries great power and profound influence. As do we, even in the most ‘inconsequential’ moments of our lives….