The Pagan Calendar for Thursday, December 24th

winter
The Pagan Calendar for Thursday, December 24th

The Mothers -The Venerable Bede, writing about the customs of the Pagan Anglo Saxons in England, mentioned their practice of celebrating a holiday he called Modranicht or Modresnacht on the eve of Christmas. In his account of the Pagan calendar in 725 CE, he said:

“And the very night that is sacrosanct to us, these people call modranect, that is, the mothers’ night, a name bestowed, I suspect, on account of the ceremonies which they performed while watching this night through.”

This ‘night of the Mothers’ was evidently a sacred night devoted to a group of feminine divinities, like those pictured on carvings and statues all over Celtic France and Britain which show three women together, holding children and fruit, fish, grain and other bounties of the earth.

In Shetland, into recent times, it was called Helya’s Night when each child was committed into the protection of Mother Mary. Helya may be a corruption of the Old Norse heilagr, meaning holy. This is probably Mother’s Night overlaid with a Christian veneer.  [237] An account written in the nineteenth century says that, once the children were in bed, the old woman (the reporter’s grandmother) rose from her place by the peat fire and made her way over to the cradle where the youngest lay. Raising her hands over the slumbering infant, she spoke aloud:

Mary Midder had de haund
Ower aboot for sleepin-baund
Had da lass an’ had da wife,
Had da bairn a’ its life.
Mary Midder had de haund.
Roond da infants o’ wur land.

This procedure was repeated over all the children, while the grandfather sat raking the peats in the hearth. The old man was also thought to have been reciting something but, unfortunately, his softly spoken words were inaudible.

Anna Franklin, Yule (The Eight Sabbats)

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Celebrating Other Spirituality 365 Days A Year – Up-Helly-Aa

Witchy Comments & Graphics
Celebrating Other Spirituality 365 Days A Year – Up-Helly-Aa

January 28th – 29th

Up-Helly-Aa

Up-Helly-Aa is a centuries-old fire festival held in the Shetland Islands. It is derived from the ancient Yuletide festival celebrating the triumph of the sun over darkness and winter, and it pays

tribute to the ancient Viking Gods and Goddesses. The festival began with torch light processions that ignited giant bonfires and culminated with the burning of a replica of a Viking ship. It was believed that the fire would dispel evil spirits from the villagers and their homes. The festivities usually ended with great feasting and dancing until dawn.

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Dog-gone Doggies of the Day for Feb. 13

Holly, the Dog of the Day
Name: Holly
Age: Three year old
Gender: Female Breed: Shetland Sheep Dog
Home: South Florida, USA
I‘m Holly Brown, a three year old Shetland Sheep Dog. In the second picture, I am way up in the mountains at our home in North Carolina, but most of the time I live in South Florida. I am the alpha dog with two other lovely Shelties and we have a wonderful time with our family. They have never had more than one dog at a time and we really keep them going. What fun!

In the pictures below you see me (Blue Merle) with Rosie (Tri-color), who is my age, and Bambi (Sable) who is only one. We have a great time exploring, running, and barking (a lot). Shelties do not like to swim, however our family is teaching us in case one of us might accidentally fall in our pool.

In November, while staying in the mountains, Bambi and I took off exploring the 180 acres adjoining our property. We got lost and everyone on the mountain helped search for us in the rain as night fell. What luck when we were found standing drenched and bewildered. After we had a warm bath, Rosie gave us a lecture on going off on our own. I don’t think we will do that again!

My days are very busy as I am a very friendly dog. My sisters and I go to my dad’s law office and greet the clients. They love all three of us and are disappointed when we are not there. We have a nice pen behind the office with a tree where we love to take a break and Dad sits in a chair and relaxes with us. Then back inside to nap until our next visitor.

My coat is very thick and Mom enjoys brushing me. I am very well behaved and sit still as she carefully grooms me. I especially like to lick people. Oh, and yes, I like to chase the cats that are in our neighborhood. They tease me from the other side of the fence and I run up and down, but never seem to catch one. They are very tricky.

Taking a walk with us is very challenging. My sisters and I like to get tangled up and Mom has to step over our leashes. I wish I had a movie as it would make you laugh. I also like to bark at the vacuum cleaner and the hair dryer when someone is drying their hair.

I have a wonderful life! I am very gentle and little children love to pet and hug me. I like that, too!

We want to wish you a Happy Valentine’s Day!

The Wiccan Book of Day for Jan. 30th – Up-Helly-Aa

Norse/Asatru/Viking Graphics
Up-Helly-Aa

Around about now–on the last Tuesday of January–the citizens of the small Shetland town of Lerwick celebrate Up-Helly-Aa, a festival around two hundred years old that harks back over a millennia in celebrating these remote Scottish islands’ Norse heritage. Essentially a fire festival hailing the reborn sun, a “Guizer Jarl’s squad” of men dressed as Vikings carries a replica Viking longship through the streets at night, followed by hundreds of “guizers” (men in various, often termed, disguises) carrying firebrands. At journey’s end, the longship is set alight, initiating a night of wild carousing (womenfolk included)

“A Saintly Savior”

Remember St Aidan (Maedoc of Ferns, d. 626) on his feast day, for this Irish bishop protected wild animals. He is symbolized by the stag that he is said to have rendered invisible to its pursuers. (A stag, or its antlers, also represents the Horned God.)

Magickal Graphics