First, I must apologize for being away so long. I hope you all did not give up on me. I have simply been too busy to sit down and write. Between two full-time jobs, a new relationship, and moving into a new home; I have barely had any time to sleep. Now that my schedule is adjusted, I have adapted to my new sleeping habits, my budget is on track, and I have moved almost completely into my new home, I have a little extra time to tend to my recreational activities.
I must admit, through all these changes it has been very difficult to stay in a spiritual routine. There were nights after working 16 hour days I did not want to do anything at all besides hit the pillow. But I made sure to commit some of my time to reading, writing, or simply just mediating on a daily basis, rest assured, my spirituality is still very much intact. I feel I would not have made it through the last couple of months without the guidance, love, and protection from my Lord and Lady, and I thank them every single day.
I was researching house blessings trying to decide which kind of ritual I wanted to perform for my new home and came across some very interesting things. Every culture, religion, and race in the world has a different tradition for blessing a new home. Here are some examples I found interesting:
In China, before moving into a home the Chinese shine a flashlight into the top and the bottom corners of every wall in every room and wardrobe of the home, because they believe that the light will show the spirits where to go.
A Jewish tradition says to give salt, bread, and a broom for a new home. Salt to season your life, bread in hopes you will never be hungry, and a broom to sweep your sadness away.
In Russia, people always let a cat into the home first before they move in.
There are many more traditions, but one specifically stands out in almost any culture, that is smudging the house with incense or smoke of some kind. The most popular is with sage. Sage is an amazing herb. I grow it and dry it and use it in just about everything magical that I do. I buy a sage smudge stick every time I come across one and my box of magical goodies is about 3/4 full of nothing but sage. Explaining why would entail an entirely separate blog post…I’ll get right on that!
Smudging a new home is very important, the smoke from your smudge stick carries away all the previous energy left in the house by whom ever resided there before you, or whom ever treaded on the property before you, etc. I can mostly “feel” the energy a place has when I walk into it because my mood will change. Over time this could become a burden, you don’t want to walk around your new home constantly pounded by someone’s left over negativity, so smudge it away. All you need to do is light some sort of incense (or smudge stick) and walk around your property. While you do visualize the smoke catching all the energy and carrying it away. You will be left with a clean fresh start.
It is important that when you get rid of anything in magic that you replace it with something else. So after I smudge my space, I leave my sage stick burning and light some candles. Think of what you want to feel when you come home. do you want to feel happy? Protected? Loved? Take these feelings and think of what represents them to you and place a few objects around the home that make you feel that way. For example; flowers make me feel happy, so I placed some fresh flowers around my house. My pentacle makes me feel protected so I placed it on the wall, and my mother’s quilt makes me feel loved so I placed that on the floor. Sit for a few minutes before doing anything else and concentrate on feeling those things you want to feel at home and this will become your homes “new” energy.
With the warmest wishes,
Ostara, The spring equinox, is the time of year when day and night are equal in length . This Sabbat signifies action, movement, and the newness of the Earth. Ostara brings the growth of light and balance. Traditionally a time for spring cleaning and chores, Ostara is also a good time to open up to spiritual cleaning , it is a time to start over, to reflect and re-set our lives.
The Earth is renewing itself and blooming with fresh and beautiful life , and in comparison to the previous winter months is becoming much livelier. Spring is a good time to set the balance of things in our lives, renew ourselves, and become more livelier just as the Earth does.
There are several ways to fall out of balance, weather mentally, spiritually, physically, or emotionally. Our actions, our communications, our thoughts and our bodies can become imbalanced as well. Think of something in your life that has become out of balance or something that has never been balanced that you would like to correct. Have you lost focus, have you lost your temper, are your emotions getthing the best of you? I have included below a balancing rite that you can include in your Ostara circle if you like. I hope you enjoy!
Ostara balancing candle right
You will need two white taper candles (I prefer the small 5 inch ones because they take less time to burn out) and some sea salt.
On one candle write the word balance. On the second candle write one word for something in your life that you want to bring balance to, or something that has become imbalanced. For example,I may be having a hard time getting my point across to others , so I would write communication. Or I may feel a little over emotional lately, so I would want to bring balance to my emotions. Once you have written on both candles palce them on your altar about 6 inches apart. The candle that says balance should be on the left side. In between the two candles draw an aarow, with sea salt, that points to the candle that represents your imbalanced trait. See the picture below for an example.
Light the balance candle, then move to the right and light the trait candle. Chant the following “Mother and father of all living things, unto my being your loving balance bring.” Picture balance from the first candle flowing out and through the aarow into your imbalanced trait candle. Allow the candles to burn out on their own and dispose of the salt by burying it in the Earth.
As always, Blessed Be and a very merry Ostara,
Today I would like to share one of my most favorite pieces of poetry with you. It comes from Buckland’s complete book of witchcraft, and it is used in a temple space purification ritual. I could only wish to write something so beautiful some day so I hope you like it as much as I do.
“Soft is the rain, it gently falls upon the fields beneath.
It lulls the heart, it stills the mind, gives solitude I seek.
It patters down so gentle, yet it ne’er does bend a leaf.
And yet the water that is there, will wash away all grief.
For smoothness follows in the wake, and quiet, peace, and love.
All around in freshness new, come down from clouds above.
All evil go, flow out from here and leave all fresh and plain.
Let negativity not come into this room again.
For love I now find all around, so soft, so still, so pure.
I can perform my rituals as peace and quiet endure.”
Love and Light,
The new moon symbolizes beginnings and newness. I have a spell that I perform on the day of each new moon, it is a house cleaning and protection spell I wrote, you do not need to cast a circle for this spell, in fact, this is something that I do to prepare for my new moon esbat.
House cleansing and protection spell:
You will need a sage smudge stick, and a green votive candle.
Clean your house, really clean it, out with the old musty energy and in with the new clean vibes. Once your house is clean, light the green candle and take it and the smudge stick to the front door. Stand facing the door and use the flame of the candle to light the sage. Once it starts to smolder use it to “draw” a pentagram in the doorway and say; “with the wisdom of air, and the power of sage, and the strength of earth and fire to light their way, I draw here a sign of protection and love, watched over by the light of the Lord and Lady above.” Now take the smudge stick and walk deosil (clockwise) around your home and imagine the smoke from the sage carrying away all the negativity. Draw a pentagram in all the windows and doorways. Do this anytime you feel the need to protect your home or remove negative energies.
Valentine’s day has come and gone and in a few days some of us will be staring at a bouquet of bloomed roses wondering what to do with them. Whatever you do, DO NOT throw them away! Roses are some of the most magical flowers there are. They will bring peace, attract love, mend the pain of a loss, and they have the capability to empower you.
The rose is the master herb of love, and there are many things that you can do with them other than smell them or look at them atop your desk or bedroom dresser. Here are some things that you can do with roses.
Placing roses on your altar will deepen your experience of divine love. I like to color coordinate flower arrangements with the purpose of my rite. You can buy a dozen roses at Wal-Mart for ten bucks when it isn’t valentine’s day, so they aren’t that expensive and there are a ton of things that you can do with them after your right. You can hang them upside down and dry them, or press them flat in a heavy book and use them for potpourri or incense or oils.
Planting a rosebush in your yard at home will bring good fortune and abundance. There are so many types of roses, and they are all so beautiful. If you live in a home with a garden you can plant them almost anywhere in the yard. If you live in an apartment or townhouse without a yard, some varieties of roses even grow in pots and you can place them on your balcony or patio.
There are a lot of things that you can do with rose petals. Balance your emotions and increase self-confidence by adding fresh rose petals to your bath. You can attract love by placing fresh rose petals in an amulet and wearing it or carrying it with you. You can add them to spring water and allow it to steep and make fresh rose-water which tastes great and smells wonderful.
Whatever you decide to do with those left over valentine’s day roses I hope that it is a magical experience for you. If you decide not to use them for anything afterwords, please don’t just throw them away, they should at least be buried and returned to the earth from which they were grown.
I’ve included one of my favorite rose spells for you below.
Magical Rose Wash: from ‘Wicca: A Year And A day’ by Timothy Roderick
You will need a pint of spring water, fresh rose petals and an apple.
Pour the water into a large bowl. Chop the apple and add it and the rose petals to the water and allow it to steep. The longer it has to steep the better it will be. Cleanse your face and all of your chakras and say: “Awaken beauty, hold it fast. Bind the mists, to make it last.”
It is that time of year when we feel as if we have been surrounded in winter for far too long. The cold temperatures keep us indoors, and the ice and snow seem to linger on and on forever. Something that we tend to forget about the ice and snow is that they carry some very powerful spirits who work to help the earth rest in preparation for the spring.
Imbolc is the official beginning of the end of winter. The earth begins to quicken beneath the soil and life is stirring. Soon, the first signs of spring will begin to sprout and the sun will warm us and allow the world to bloom in the beautiful colors of springtime.
Imbolc is about the awakening of the earth’s energies, and should also be about your own personal awakening. Winter allows us to grow lazy at times and forget about things that are important to us. We tend to tread gloomily along day-to-day, just doing what we need to do to get by and nothing more. Without the vitamin D and the energy from the sun, “boring” can set in before we know it.
This Imbolc think of a soul nurturing interest or desire or talent that you may have put on hold and would like to awaken. Have you left your interest in art, music, writing, etc. behind to focus on your career, school, or have you just put what you love to do on the list of “I’ll do it later”? It is important for us to feed our souls with the things that we are good at and love to do. We cannot be complete if we repress our talents and our souls desires.
Here is something that you can include in your Imbolc rite to help with your own personal awakening.
You will need; a small piece of paper, a pen, a small flower-pot, some potting soil, and some seeds (an herb such as sage or chamomile would work well).
Write the interest or talent that you would like to awaken on the piece of paper. If you thought of more than one, that’s ok, write them all, but make sure the piece of paper is not too big. Fill the flower-pot halfway with soil. Fold the piece of paper 3 times and place into the pot, the fill the remainder of the pot with soil. Sow your plant seeds into the soil. Take care of this new magical plant, as it grows, the roots will entwine with your interest or talent and it will grow just as the plant does.
Wishing you a very merry Imbolc and the brightest blessings,
When the sun enters the sign of Capricorn, sometime between December 19th and December 23rd, winter has officially begun. Yule, or the Winter Solstice is the shortest day of the year and marks the re-birth of the sun. The rites of our ancestors were often aimed at “coaxing” the sun to return to end the fear of darkness and the dead season. They longed for light and life to be returned to the world.
From out of the longest and darkest night of the year comes a brilliant new-born sun. With this new light comes promise of warmer and longer days. This should remind us that light will always come from darkness, The chaos, hurt, stress, loneliness, and pain that we sometimes experience will end. Yule is about endings as well as promises for a better future. Life and energy go on eternally just as the wheel of the sun does.
The winter solstice also reminds us that in our darkest hour, there is still a ray of light, a spark. Our objective as witches is to always search for that spark within ourselves. It is important to constantly feed and nurture that spark and help it grow, to “coax” the light of the spark to overcome the darkness within ourselves.
I have included below an idea for your Yule Ritual. Feel free to use it if you like. Happy Solstice friends!
Banishing darkness candle rite:
You will need a white or yellow votive candle and votive holder.
Sit in a meditative position and close your eyes. Imagine that you are gazing upon the vast night sky. You can see the stars and the moon, but focus your energy on the big emptiness of space. Now allow your mind to think of a negative or destructive situation in your life. Take the time to completely feel all of the emotions associated with this. When you arrive at the peak of your emotions, begin to breathe deeply. Imagine that with each exhalation, you expel the darkness and negativity up into the vastness of space and out of you completely. Continue this until you are completely drained of all negative feelings.
Once you are drained of all negativity begin to breathe normally and relax . Sense the emptiness inside. Take the time to really feel the spacious void that now exists within you. Now open your eyes and light the candle. Focus all of your attention on the flame and imagine the warm light filling up the empty space inside of you. The light becomes larger and fills not only the void, but your entire being re-igniting the spark within. Allow this light to heal you completly and to re-allign your consciousness. Allow the candle to burn out on its own or pinch off the flame and use it any time you face darkness or destructive situiations.
Love and Light,