Rejoice spring is here: our equinox ritual summary

Sun Cleansing: Imagine the light of the Sun healing and cleansing any unwanted or negative energy.

Musical Circle Casting: Walking in a circle while playing healing music.

Spring 2015 music

Set  our intention and invocation through poetry:

rejoice as,
the light returns,
birth, life, and warmth,
possibilities and longer days
prosperity and childlike play
gods, goddesses, spirits of spring
join us on this day
faeries, nymphs, and elementals
we follow, lead the way.

Activity: Write intentions for the season and placed them in pots.Plant flowers over them and watch our plants and goals blossom.

Closing: Say goodbye and thank you to all the invoke spirits. Music circle opening by walking in the opposite direction.

And Water shall heal the wounds: Working with Troubling Ancestors update.

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April 24th marked what would have been my  departed father’s 69th birthday. As I have written before it has been a struggle figuring out  how to honor my father since he was a difficult man in life. When I  first began meeting with my father in ritual, I was offering beer and a few good thoughts. Beer, although a clear favorite of his, was an odd choice since it was also his downfall. I justified my choice by reasoning that it could no longer affect his physical body. But in honestly I have no idea what drinks and food do for or to a spirit. I simply gave beer because it was one of the few things I knew he enjoyed. I had no clue how to approach ancestor worship with my father so I just winged it, hoping that eventually I would find my way. Hoping that he would at least appreciate the effort. If not, at least I would help myself in the grieving process.

Now, my practice has changed slightly, I stopped offering alcohol for the time being. Thanks to a suggestion in Haitian Vodou Handbook  by Kenaz Filan instead I started offering him blessed spring water. Water to purify and promote clarity on his new spiritual  journey. This offering feels more authentic and active. For even when I do not have good words to offer  or  there are no messages to receive, I can still give this small blessing. It is something I can do even when I am in the angry stage of grieving. “ Hey I do not want to talk and engage you, but I wish for you clarity and peace.” However, I found myself often wishing that “this water brings purification so that we may one day have a healthy relationship.” The  water offerings have opened a new door for communicating with my father.

For his birthday, I did a little more than my regular offering. I gave him a present of playing cards. Playing cards was one of the healthy activities I recall him participating in with his friends. After I gave the offering, I played and sang along with a recording of  Stevie Wonder’s Happy Birthday. My Dad would always leave long annoying voice messages on my birthday singing this song. It drove me wild back then but now it is one of the few precious memories. When it came time to snuff out the candle,  I whispered to my father “ I miss you.”  It was the first time I was not stuck between angry and confusion. For the first time, I allowed myself to remember and embrace the good side of my father. I allowed myself to set aside the beer drinking and angry man long enough to honor the funny playful dad.

Happy Birthday, Dad.

On Defining my Magick

What is my magick? I used to do a lot of spells when I was younger. Spells for love and happiness and money. But the older I  would get, the less spells I would do. Magick become less about what I could attain. Magick became about my connection with nature. I wanted mystical relationships. Marriage to the sun and moon. An affair with the waters. A deep secret friendship with the air. The earth as a my protector. Old, grumpy and wise earth. I wanted to understand how everything worked. And how I was apart of it. I did not want to create magic, I wanted to discover that I was indeed magic.

Surprise. As I got older still, magic took on a new meaning. I wanted to heal. Not with spells. They seemed too easy and fleeting. I wanted to heal people.  Heal the inner pains with hard work. By helping them see into their own hearts and minds. Helping them to see their own wisdom. Help them see they are also magic.

I wanted to heal the human relationships. I wanted to heal our relationships with nature. With creation.  I wanted to teach that we all were married to each other. Interdependent. We were all the sun, moon, earth, water.  And then I grew older and came down to earth. I wanted to  experienced the true magic of family and friends. I wanted to heal my own wounds and disconnection from loved  ones. I wanted to feel not the sun or reach the stars. I wanted to dig through the earth, pull up the dirt and find the bones, the bodies, the skeletons of my ancestors. I wanted to discover my roots.  How could I know magic if I don’t know where I come from, and  who I am.? Magic is now honoring the past, the spirits and ancestors. Seeing and receiving their healing messages. Passing on what I learn.  So that many other people can take this journey into magic too.

Happy Ostara: Correspondences

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Here is just a quick list of Correspondences:

Other  related or close holidays: Easter, St. Patrick’s day, Passover

Aspects and symbols: fertility, birth, new life, balance,light ,becoming  warmer, rebirth, renewal, new ideas, good fortune

Gods: Eostre/Ostara, Ariadne, Athena, Minerva, Persephone, Attis, Cernunnos

Animals and Mystical beings: chicks, bunnies,  magical hare, hawk, sparrow, snake and Merpeople

Myths: “ magical hare and magical eggs” and resurrection of various God/desses.

Foods: chocolate, eggs, green foods, seeds, salads and “Spring foods”

Activities: spring cleaning, egg hunt, egg art, gardening, new projects.

Flowers, Trees, Plants: ash, birch, maple, daffodil, lily, rose, violet, honeysuckle,lavender, tulips, lilac

 Stones and gems: moonstone, clear quartz,rose, garnet, agate

 Zodiac: Aries

Other symbols: flowers, vines, seeds

Direction: East

Tarot: Chariot, 7, Magician, eight of wands

Resources and Further reading:

Towards a Wiccan Circle:A Practical Introduction to the Principles of Wicca by Sorita d’Este 

Llewellyn’s Complete Book of Correspondences: A Comprehensive & Cross-Referenced Resource for Pagans & Wiccans by Sandra Kynes

Tarot for all seasons: celebrating the days & nights of Power by Christine Jette

Do I believe in reincarnation? One Wiccan View

Wicca thea/theology confirms reincarnation and afterlife though its fascination with seasonal changes, life and death cycle, and communication with Spirit realms. With that said, Wiccans do not agree on the particulars of reincarnation or after life.

For me, Wiccan practice and theology is not so much about what happens next.  It is about how we treat ourselves, each other, and the Natural World in the here and now.  It is about how we connect with our Ancestors, Higher Self, Spirits and the Divine in every present moment.

Unlike some religions that focus on what can we do in order to ensure a better time after this earthly life, Wiccans are usually pretty in love with our earthly existence.  We tend to not be considered with ensuring a perfect next reincarnation, in ending reincarnations or getting into “heaven”.

Even when Wiccans do Spirit communication, we are talking to them in the here and now. They are not in so far off place. We are simply pushing away the veil between two realities. To the Wiccan, Spirits are all around us and a part of our current lives. We are simply not always open to seeing and experiencing them.

Now, some Wiccans may choose to do past life regression or delve deeper into what reincarnation is. I, on the other hand, only experience the idea of reincarnation through watching the turning of the seasons, or in conversations with my Spirit Guide. My Spirit Guide has at least once been incarnate as my husband. I have had some visions of our past life.

Really, all this tells me is that reincarnation happens. Nothing about the ends and outs.

On that matter, I would have to guess.  My idea would be that there is either a waiting period between incarnations or  that one’s spirit could be simultaneously existed in multiple realities and times. This seems a big possible since one can communicate with one’s higher self. It would serve to reason, that we can communicate with our Ancestors’ higher selves even if they have reincarnated.

I am  borderline on whether I believe humans can reincarnated as everything. Can we be rocks? or insects? I am not sure. I figure once you experience one form of life, you would reincarnate into something else. I see reincarnation as an opportunity for growth. So, I doubt one goes from a human to an ant.

I do not believe that reincarnation is bad or good. That ones does something bad and therefore has a lower birth. I think we choose our reincarnations based on what we need for spiritual growth.

I think that there is no end to reincarnation.  Again, Wiccan theology poses reincarnation as a natural recurrence like the changing of seasons. It is not the same as  religions that  see reincarnation as  negative. Regardless of how spiritually realized you are, I think change is the natural state of things. I think we are always reincarnating even in one earthly life.  Reincarnation is the merely a process of impermanence.

With that said, I  do not think about it often. There are far too many mysteries in this current life, for me to be too considered about  what happens next.  I am more of a journey not the destination type.

Heteronormative In Wicca: Rethinking The God and Goddess

When people assume that Wicca  has to be heteronormative it is often because of the pairing of The Goddess/ The God. While, I will not argue that these terms can be problematic and I’m totally in favor of people making adjustments that fit them better. And perhaps, Wicca would be better off without those terms. Still, there are  many reasons why Wicca does Not have to be practiced in a heteronomative way.

Here are just some things to think about as far as heterosexism , Wicca and the God/Goddess combo:

1: The Goddess and God are not just lovers. The Goddess and God are portrayed as Mother and Son. There are also myths of two Gods.  Such as the Gods who highlight the dark and light halves of the year. The God and Goddess are not just some literal heterosexual couple.

2: Symbolism: Both the God, Goddess and their relationship often symbolize aspects of nature, seasons, human existence, spiritual journey, etc. Wiccans who have overly focus on there being some power in an hetero-union are sadly missing all the symbolism.Over focus on literalism is often an avenue to oppressive religious ideals

3: The Goddess represents everything including all gender, sexual and nonbinary expressions. The Goddess can be seen as ultimately all genders or genderless or both.

4: The God and Goddess represent all Gods and Goddesses including Bisexual, Lesbian, Gay and Transgender Gods.

5: There are Wiccans and Wiccan groups who do not use the ” God/Goddess language”. Some use just God or Goddess for example.

6: Sex and fertility rituals usually are symbolic or have a symbolic layer. But they can be alter, changed or left out . In Gay Witchcraft, Chris Penczak offers suggestions on exploring one’s sexuality and gender expression in ritual by taking on different parts in ritual such as a male being the Goddess.

7: There are LGTBQ Wiccan groups who created non-heteronomative covens, rituals and theology.

This is not to say Wiccan community does not have tons of problems as far as heterosexism and cissexism. More that, there are plenty of ways to look at the philosophy/theology and practice in a non-heteronormative/Cissexist way. Plenty of religions fight with oppressive ideas, Wicca is not any different or uniquely doomed.

Imbolc 2013: Overview of our ritual

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As usual, I  prefer to not do  an elaborate or prewritten rituals. Instead we ( partner and I ) wrote a  simple outline before and memorize a few short lines.  For this ritual we did not do a traditional circle casting but we included cleansing, charging and grounding. We invoked and honored Spirit/Goddess and all the  Elements in subtle ways.

Altar:  Candles, White fabric rose petals, chamomile flowers, rosemary oil (for anointing candles) and holy water.

  • Sparkled areas and selves with holy water.
  • We lit all altar candles and then took two candles to every room, then  said, ” We enter this space with the light of fresh beginning”
  • Partner played violin as I visualized our space, minds and hearts being blessed and charged.
  • We built a fire, then as we threw sage on it we stated our intentions of cleansing, purification and celebration of  Imbolc.
  • We read poems , wrote a haiku and then put haiku to music (ukulele). We  used  the poems, haiku and music as our offering to Spirit especially virgin/maiden Goddess aspect and the young Sun King.
  • As a grounding period we ate quiche and drank  chamomile tea
  • Closed ritual.