Monday, December 29, 2008

potholes in my spiritual path

I have previously and at great length related how I went from Catholic schoolgirl to tree hugging daughter of the Goddess so I won't go into all that again, but each of us come to this path in our own unique way and my path, I am discovering, has some large holes in it.

I have cruised along mostly on auto pilot since opening myself up to the Goddess and I have been most happy doing this, no regrets. I have just been happy to be released from the feeling of judgement and doom hanging over my head. I have done some magick on a semi regular basis and once I learned to just let go in my rituals I found that simple and from the heart gave me great satisfaction and peace. I have not really pushed myself to go farther, rather I have just let my curiousity drag me along in a scattered fashion.

I started the blog A Pagan Tapestry primarily as a learning experience for myself and it certainly has been that, and hopefully will continue to be. So as I am doing more and more studying and more and more research for the blog I am discovering some things lacking in my education.

On the plus side, I understand from many sources that I do some fairly advanced work in the Craft.
For example, I am heavily involve in working with the Elements, not just invoking and calling and asking them to guard but really working with them, often just with one of them, no other entities involved. Now supposedly (or so I read) this takes much study and dedication to the Craft, but I cheated. I have been talking to the Elements since I was a small child and have been guided by them often.

Another example, I have begun some formal study of Shamanism and find it fascinating, but again, I jumped ahead of where I should be. I have had a relationship with The Trickster of the southwest since I was in high school. I lived in New Mexico, spent quite a lot of time on the reservations and met some Healers and met The Trickster, so I did not come to know him through years of study and trial and error. He is another familiar entity that I made excuses for in my Catholic days.

On the minus side...I call myself Celtic. I am actually half Irish and my grandfather was an immigrant and full of stories about banshees and stuff. I do know most of the major Celtic gods and goddesses. I dedicated a (horse related) business to Epona, I give cursory salutes to the appropriate Goddesses at certain times of the year. I have even studied some of the nearly incomprehensible Celtic mythology. But I have never bothered to really study the myths for information about how better to relate to the deities. I have never really delved at any depth into the pantheon that I claim.
My relationship with them has been superficial.

The primary focus of my path to divinity has been The Goddess, the Mother Goddess, Mother Earth, Gaia, The Creator, whatever you want to call her/him. That won't change, but I do believe in a multitude of deities, not just multiple faces of one, and yet I have been neglecting all the rest.

So in this upcoming year I am planning to start filling in all those potholes in my path. I want to learn how people have related to the Elements over time, especially if they did not consider them childhood playmates, and how this relationship has evolved.

I want to start at the beginning of Shamanism and begin to learn the mysteries. Even The Trickster says this is a good idea, there is more to it than an overly familiar relationship with him.

And most important, I want to explore the history of the Celtic gods and goddesses and learn more about this history with a goal to develop a better understanding of them and a better relationship with them. A more personal relationship.

I plan to work on some of that here on this blog and it will spill over onto A Pagan Tapestry which will begin to reflect more "who" instead of the "what" that I have limited myself to.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

It was a magickal morning

I devoted quite a lot of time this morning to my cleansing plan.
I had my usual coffee, surf the net and try to wake up morning, until the sun started peeking over the horizon.

I took a shower, washed my hair, scrubbed with a wonderful sea salt and citrus scrub.
Then I set out an orange candle for my prosperity spell, my tiny plate with the candles for the god and goddess, a new large candle that I planned to dedicate to the Goddess, a row of tea lights for my four companion spirits (formerly known as saints) and my sage and citrus candle. I crumbled some dried white sage and some incense (lavender and sweetgrass) into a small cauldron.

I did my favorite morning ritual to greet the Elements and ask the blessings of the Goddess and God.

From there it got somewhat free flowing. I started lighting candles, invoking whomever the candles represented, dedicated the new candle to the Goddess and lit the sage. When the sage was burning well I put out the flames and allowed it to smoke. My banishing technique is not exactly by anyone's book. I just wandered through the house with the smoking sage, chatting with the Elementals and telling the negative energies to leave. Then I opened a few windows and let all the smoke out.

I did a candle spell for prosperity and business success with the orange candle, set it aside and did a dedication of the coming year to the Goddess.

Then I thanked everyone for coming, put out the candles and buried the sage ash in the flower garden. The house smelled clean, felt clean and I felt about 50 lbs lighter.
I have felt wonderful all day, even when I was freezing my poor feet off giving a riding lesson later in the day. I need to take the time and do this sort of thing more often, the payoff is wonderful

Friday, December 26, 2008

New Beginnings

Isn't it amazing how often we say that? We get to do that, it's one of the few breaks that we (as a society) seem to be able to give ourselves.

I have been struggling with having to work part time in order to take care of my mother's medical and driving needs. I should be enjoying not working full time, but I am stressing over it instead. I have animal dependents and have never before worried about the financial end of taking care of them.

I am going to give myself a new beginning.

Tomorrow at dawn I will smudge the house and perform a ritual that will be a combination prosperity spell and an offering of the coming year to the Goddess.

I am going to jump whole heartedly into the freelance writing I have been doing in a somewhat haphazard way and I am going to give myself more time to be creative and enjoy painting and my new hobby of making earrings (a witch can't have too many earrings).

I am going to call on Peter's servitor (see previous post) and offer my energy and requests to him and see what happens. I am also going to take the plunge and create the entity that I have been thinking of creating to help me with my focus and ability to complete projects.

I avoid thinking of these as resolutions, they are already ongoing activities, I am going to renew my focus and strive to enjoy the process more.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Magickal Entities

This was copied intact from Angels in the Whirlwind blog. The link is on my blog/podcast list at A Pagan Tapestry and also included at the end of this post. Or just click on the links here.

I haven't decided whether to make use of this servitor or not, I have been doing some studying on creating my own, which I still plan to do, but I am tempted to take part in Peter's experiment and see how many people send energy to this servitor and how many get assistance back from it.

Feel free to take part yourself. If you are not familiar with magickal entities you may want to do a little research first.

Public Servitor is Here

As promised, the servitor I created is ready for action. He’s been active for a short time, but I’m feeling pretty good about him. I would hope that you use him and thus, feed him energy. He grows in power and ability the more often he is fed.

Trocowlme (Tro-cowlh-me, with accent on middle syllable, COWL, H is silent) was initially created to attract wealth. In fact, his name came from this statement of intent, “Attract wealth to me.” After deleting vowels, and repeated letters, I got TRCWLHM. Then adding a vowel or two for pronunciation, he was named.

Rather than use the Rose Cross for his sigil, I used a more free form approach, yet the main letters are all in there. Really, there are lots of ways to create a sigil, and I’m not one to believe that there is only one right way.

Creating and using a new copy of Trocowlme:

  1. Draw his sigil using any physical medium. If you prefer creating sacred space, feel free. Burning incense helps, such as patchouli. Then trace his sigil in the air, imagining you’re tracing in a blue-purple colour. You may use your forefinger of your strong hand, or your wand.
  2. It’s best to create a hard copy of his sigil, and maybe give him a place of honour in your home. His sigil is below.
  3. You may then send Trocowlme the energy he needs. Remember, the more energy you invest, the better the results will be. Imagine what you would like him to accomplish.
  4. Instruct Trocowlme as to what you would require. Remember, also, that true wealth is more than money. This was actually my intention.
  5. After instruction him, send him on his way, simply by telling him he may leave. Then FORGET what you just did. Dismiss it from your mind. Go distract yourself. Whatever it takes. Have fun with this. And please let me know what you’ve accomplished. Add this post to your blog if you wish. No need to ask. He’s public domain. Just please credit me - what the hell! The more people who use him, the better.

You can also scroll down to my other posts on servitors and servitor creation. Happy creating!


Copyright © 2008. Feel free to copy & distribute freely. Please include this notice.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

It's Christmas Eve

I have always enjoyed Christmas Eve. When I was a child we would go to midnight Mass which was a ritual to put all rituals to shame. The full blown Latin High Mass took a couple of hours and the music for Christmas would knock your socks off. Add candles and incense and a pipe organ and it was like being transported in time. It was disorienting to go back outside.

I grew up with a love of ritual, that was probably the easiest part of the leap from Catholicism to Paganism, both consider the gods worthy of a good ritual in their name.

Christmas Eve has always seemed quiet and peaceful to me. I gave up hysterical shopping, wrapping and stressing years ago, actually about the time it started being stressful instead of fun.

This year we have Solstice, Christmas and the New Moon all within a week. That's a lot of energy no matter how you label it and I have a feeling that this is an important time to work some magick.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Winter Solstice

I love the winter solstice, I always have. I can remember as a small child telling my mother that solstice came first and Christmas was picked as Jesus' birthday because it was already such an important day. I have no idea where I got that at that age.

I have always lived where there are seasons, I do not ever want to live where there are no seasons, the constant change and rebirth fuels my own life. But I also suffer from the lack of daylight as solstice approaches. Right now this region is at approximately 8 hours of daylight and 16 hours of dark, I am reaching my limit. I spend time outside no matter what the weather, but at this point I am becoming sluggish and irritable. Winter in this area is really January, February and March, but this dark time of the year is the only time I find depressing.

As solstice approaches, my body, my spirit and my very soul are crying 'enough is enough.' So I take the modern approach, print out the NOAA chart of sunrise and sunset times for my location, hang it on the refrigerator and check it everyday until spring is well under way.

I know that thousands of years ago the elders of the clans marked the travels of the sun in some way and the practice has continued today. We even still think of it as the sun returning although we know better.

Celebrating the solstice is one of the rituals that we perform each year that we can be certain that we share with pagans of long ago.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

meditation addiction?

I was reading Gypsy's blog, Barefoot in the Sand and found myself nodding along as I read. She was talking about making a renewed effort to take time for her spiritual practice on a daily basis.

I have similar problems, most of us do. Rush rush rush, we don't seem to find a few minutes for ourselves on a regular, daily basis. I have mentioned this before and the response that I nearly always get is along the lines of; don't feel obligated, fit the time in here and there, you don't have to do ritual when you don't have time.

The problem for me is not that I feel obligated....what I feel is a craving.

I came to Paganism and associated practices such as meditation in middle age. I lived my whole life with a wrathful god looking over my shoulder and a negative voice in my mind chiding me all day, every day in an eternal chant of blame, guilt and worry.

When I embraced Wicca, I gave Abraham's god the boot without a qualm. I leaped into rituals to the Goddess and magick with great enthusiasm and little effect for a long while. When I first practiced meditation I experienced the usual frustration and disbelief that this could actually accomplish anything.

When I finally started to learn how to draw energy and release it and then gradually began to experience the energy and the effects of ritual and magick, when I finally experienced the profound sense of awe in performing a full moon ritual to honor the Goddess, when I finally started to learn to meditate....I did not want to go without the benefits of practicing the Craft.

So it is not a matter of feeling obligated to spend time this is a positive addiction and craving.

When I take the time and do a ritual for the Goddess I feel at once connected to this planet and at the same time aware of how a mere scattering of dust we are in the universe. When I take time to do meditation, my entire day is different. I am grounded. I am less likely to experience road rage on my commute, to be frustrated with a co worker, to join in the daily complaining. I feel connected to the energy of the planet and it grounds and calms me.
Before any of these experiences came into my life, I certainly didn't miss them, I thought I was just fine

Now, like any addict, I crave my fix. I crave being grounded, feeling at peace, letting the noise in my mind fade into the background. I do need this time for myself and I need, like Gypsy, to make the time happen, no matter what.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

limited success

I have continued to do the meditation that I described in my last post, hoping to contact my spirit guide again. I have had some mixed success. The central room that my meditation takes me to has many hallways leading off of it. I have met my spirit guide again and we have walked down one of the hallways together. He does not speak and all the doors are closed. I feel only curious, but we don't open any of the doors.

My spirit guide now appears to me either as the Native American man as he did originally or alternately as a movie version of Merlin.

After puzzling over this, I decided that the reason this meditation is not progressing is that my analytical mind is still interfering with my intuitive mind and perhaps scoffing at the whole thing. "If you want to talk to a wizard, HERE'S a wizard." And so I get the Merlin version.

I have spent my whole life being analytical and skeptical, I suppose that I should not hope to just tell that part of me to shut up and let my intuition speak and expect to have it work like a light switch.

I am finding this all fascinating, but I hope that I am not stuck in a loop.

Thursday, December 4, 2008


I want to record this because I hope to have something to compare it to soon.

I was doing a guided meditation, one of the meditations on Ariel's site at the DCW.
It involves getting to know your spirit guide by getting in touch with your intuitive mind. The guided part of the meditation takes you through some relaxation exercises. It then walks you down a stairway and into an area where you see a light. At that point in the meditation you are on your own.
I had done this exercise several times and found no insights from my intuition but I did find that it was a good relaxation meditation because the guided part did a good job of quieting my mind. I found it relaxing and energizing at the same time.

One evening I was doing this meditation and when I went down the stairs, for the first time I found myself in a room that I could describe. It was a wide hallway. The walls and floor were large stone blocks. The doorways and the ceiling were arched. It was dimly lit, but it felt warm and comfortable and familiar. The light described in the guided part of the meditation came down a long hallway and gradually lit the whole area. There were other hallways, unlit and lots of closed doors. To my left was a well lit room, also made of stone. In it was a long trestle table and sitting at the table facing me was an elderly Native American man. He was wearing a Navajo blanket over his shoulders and over his head like a hood. When I approached he pushed the hood off his head. He appeared quite old, with grey white long hair. He motioned for me to sit down opposite him, which I did. He told me that he was my spirit guide. I told him that was impossible because even though I had not yet found my spirit guide, I was quite sure that it would be an animal guide. He told me that I was being foolish and not paying attention or I would know that he was a shapeshifter and could become any animal.
He then changed into a raven and flew up and perched on a high shelf. I approached him and he started to say something to me...

At this point my cat jumped into my lap and broke the trance.

I have done this meditation several times since and have not had any luck in continuing the conversation or even finding my guide again. One time I did explore another room, but no one was there. Most of the time I am finding it hard to relax and let the meditation take me where it wants to. I know I am trying too hard.
I hope to find that state again and see what happens.

now to the good stuff

So far this has been a chronological account of a long boring trek from Catholic school girl to a tree hugging, dirt loving daughter of the Goddess.
Now the fun part begins.

Having (finally!) accepted the spiritual path that I was supposed to be on....many, many doors had opened for me. I am going to discuss some explorations here. No more order to the rest of this.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

a blog is born

And that brings us nearly up to date. After listening to the pagan podcasts for a while and hearing new ones come on the air I wanted to be involved somehow, reach out and contact other pagans. About 6 months ago I started a blog, didn't like it, deleted it, pondered over it and then started A Pagan Tapestry. I have greatly enjoyed it. Researching information for the blog and some really great comments from readers has led me to think about and question and re affirm my feelings and beliefs.

It took well over 20 years from my first inkling of a Goddess religion to get to where I am today. I am comfortable with my beliefs and with who I am. I am not a public Wiccan, but neither am I in the broom closet. If someone asks I will tell them that I am Wiccan. I find that the subject doesn't come up any more frequently than it did when I was Catholic, which is to say, rarely. Most of the people I know can have discussions and spend time with each other without accosting someone about their politics or religion. (Something politicians don't seem to get.)

But while I am finally comfortable with being honest about what I really believe about the universe, I have discovered another great thing about being pagan.
There is so much to learn and discuss and no one wants to restrict or interpret or explain away whatever you learn. I am just beginning to realize all the things that I want to know more about.

The remainder of this blog will be a more current exploration of my journey into the many facets of paganism and metaphysics that this path has opened up to me.