Spell For Needed Change


Thought I already had this posted here somewhere, but couldn’t find it so posting again, since I need to reference it for someone. Sorry I haven’t posted anything else in a while… I’m going through a weird phase. Will be more than happy when I snap out of it!! XD

Anyways…

Spell For Making a Much Needed Change

Purpose:

The purpose of this spell is to strengthen resolve and bring about much needed change. It was originally written to be used in conjunction with a New Year’s Resolution, but is great for whenever you have a specific change or goal you are trying to reach. It can be done as a group ritual or solitary ritual. If being done as a group each person would need their own materials.

Items Needed:

  • Gold Candle (small ones are fine): to represent each person  (Gold helps to increase understanding and knowledge, for harmonizing wills and emotions, for hope, healing, strength and success).
  • Incense (chose one of the following, or if you have one you prefer that is fine as well): Frankincense (raising power), Sandalwood (grounding/centering)
  • Oil (for anointing the candle…if you have it): peppermint (for encouraging change) You only need a  small amount of the oil for each candle, if you want you can add something personal to the oil mixture that will help strengthen the bond to the person the candle represents – (such as a small drop of spit, blood, sweat, etc… )
  • Small bowl (if mixing anything with your oil)

When to do the spell:

This spell was originally written to be done during the Waxing Moon, so that it would help to increase ones resolve to make a much needed change. So that would be the best time to do it.

What to do:

  • Cast a circle, call the Guardians, Elements, Corners, etc… and Invoke the God/ess – however you would normally do before a ritual.
  • Take a few moments to ground and center. Meditate if you want on your goals and the changes you are looking to make in your life.
  • At this point formally state your “resolution”…what your specific goal/change is. Say it aloud, clearly and firmly. If you are trying to quit smoking, lose weight, get a new job, etc… My goal is to …
  • On your candle inscribe the goal you are trying to reach, or the change that you are trying to make. While you are doing this clearly see yourself reaching that goal/making that change, keep that visualization fixed in your mind as you inscribe the candle.
  • Take a moment with your oil (or oil mix), hold the bowl in your hand and visualize all the things that you will need to do/change in order to achieve your goal. Fix the images clearly in your mind, then pour all those visualizations into the oil. Peppermint oil is great for encouraging change, so we want to charge it up with everything we can think of to help us over the coming months, as we work toward successfully reaching our goal.
  • Anoint the candle with the oil. Continue to see yourself doing the things that you were visualizing in the previous step. When you are done, place the candles on the North side of your altar, so that you are starting from a strong foundation.
  • Take a moment to think about the “resolution” you are making, know that when you make it you will keep it, and you will be successful in reaching your goals. Take a deep cleansing breath and say the following:

A resolution
Made on this night
A needed change
Our goal’s in sight
 
An extra boost
Is all we need
To find success
Our goals achieved
 
So added strength
Is what we ask
Lend us power
To stay the task
 
Successful change
Is what I see
So as I will
So mote it be

  • Allow the candle(s) to burn out on their own, as they burn your intentions are released into the universe so that they may manifest and allow you to be successful in keeping the resolution that you have made.

If you have any other things to do in your ritual circle, you can do them now, otherwise you can end your ritual. Be sure to thank the God/ess for their assistance (if necessary), release the Guardians/elements, and banish the circle.

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(S) Sabbat: Fall Equinox


While I don’t have a whole lot that I do on a regular basis, the Sabbats are something that I do make a point of acknowledging, even if it’s only briefly. Being Eclectic I do tend to sort of do my own thing – and while I do honor my God and Goddess, there are other aspects of the Sabbats that I honor as well.

I’m clearly a child of Fall, I relish in the crisp weather, the bright oranges and yellows as the leaves start to turn – that smoky smell in the air, of wood stoves or fireplaces that have been lit… and everything else that comes along with it. Spring runs a close second, but my true love is Fall. For quite a while I never quite knew what to do with myself on Mabon, and in truth I rarely call it that – preferring simply the Fall Equinox. At first glance it’s a sort of in between day – you’ve already celebrated one harvest, and if you really need to, there’s another one coming up… but that is the sort of beauty of it, when one takes a closer look (or at least there is for me).

Both Lughnasadh and Samhain have other components to them, that often overshadow their “harvest festival” aspect. So much so that I’ve really come to appreciate this particular day, as my actual day to celebrate the “harvests” of the year, and leave the other days to their other aspects. I rarely cook – it’s not something that I enjoy all that much and hubby is so much better at it than I am. He has that special gift of being able to throw things in a pot and no matter what it is, it almost always comes out amazing. A gift that I sorely lack. However on the Equinox, I usually will put forth the effort, and make it a true “thanksgiving” feast for the family.

This year, celebrations will be slightly tempered though – while I am thankful for a lot (and some things are a lot better than they were the last couple of years, so I am thankful), it’s been a pretty bad month so far. Even though it’s been almost 15 years, events earlier in the month brought the reality of my mother’s death crashing back down on me. Then – while I was still dealing with that, got a call from my dad that he likely has skin cancer, and (in his words) “hope for the best, but prepare for the worst”. He’s not the type to be overly melodramatic, so needless to say, I’m a bit worried. All of which is bad enough, but then came the worst part (yes… something worse than cancer), confirmation that one of my son’s teacher assistants was more than likely physically and verbally abusing him off and on last year. He’s autistic and completely non-verbal, so had no way to tell us what was going on, and we had absolutely no idea. This was someone we thought of as a friend, and needless to say we are devastated.

So… clearly not really in a festive, or thankful mood at the moment, but it’s still important for me to mark the turning of the Wheel. So I’m looking forward to cooking a bit of something good later on, and hopefully regaining some of the inner-balance that this day is good for.

Hope you and yours have a wonderful Sabbat!!

P.S… if anyone is in need of a good balancing ritual this is one I wrote several years back, feel free to use/modify as needed (please credit me though if you are posting it elsewhere). 🙂

Lughnasadh


In  Your Own Words: This time of year is always a bit hard on me, being that it’s near to the anniversary of my mother’s death. One of the reasons why Lughnasadh has always been one of my favorite (well… not quite the right word, but it serves in this case) Sabbats, is that it the time that Lugh bade us celebrate in honor his foster mother Tailtiu, and as such it’s somewhat of a “mother’s day” celebration for me as well. It’s made even more poignantly appropriate by the fact that my mother-in-law and my mother’s best friend (who was like a second mother to me growing up), both also died during the month of August.

So tonight I will raise a glass in honor, tell a few stories, and try not to make it a total cry-fest, because that sort of defeats the purpose of celebrating a life well lived and loved. However even after all these years, it’s sometimes difficult not to break down completely at the thought of just how much the world has been lessened by the loss of these three amazing women. You are remembered, and loved – for now and forever!

On a bit of a lighter note – I did not bake any bread, however I did make pizza… does that count?

Musical Musings:

(M) Mandating Ignorance


I want to start out by saying that I have issues with both main political parties, and at this point I am more or less fed up with both of them. However given that the GOP keeps saying the most ridiculous things EVER – they are slightly higher on my “shit list” as it were, than anyone else at the moment. I also know that there are good people in our government, who are working as hard as they can, but I also recognize that it is a very uphill battle for anyone at this point. I also need to point out that I don’t actually have any issues with most Christians – I do have issue with anyone who is trying to shove their beliefs down my throat, or who is trying to impose their beliefs as being more “moral” or “just”, or in any way better than mine. In short, I just really needed to vent and get this off my chest, so here it is…

I’m not entirely sure when this was released, though I’m guessing fairly recently as it’s just now making the news. At first glance, the official 2012 State Republican Party Platform (of Texas) might not seem related to my path, or even Paganism in general. However on closer inspection, it contains language that could (at some point) affect all of us, as it gives unsettling insight into just how far the ultra-conservative Christian politicians are willing to go, in order to insure that any child born in Texas (or potentially other states, that are led by those who are like-minded) is kept as ignorant as possible to anything outside of what their own family deems important, or worth knowing. It’s worth noting, that the national GOP Party Platform (at least from previous years) contains many similar statements as well.

There are a number of issue that I have with many of their stances, however in particular is the section relating to EDUCATING OUR CHILDREN. The official stances noted here (and to be sure there are actually quite a few more in the document, but these are some of the big ones) are all disturbing to say the very least.

American Identity Patriotism and LoyaltyWe believe the current teaching of a multicultural curriculum is divisive. We favor strengthening our common American identity and loyalty instead of political correctness that nurtures alienation among racial and ethnic groups. Students should pledge allegiance to the American and Texas flags daily to instill patriotism.

Early Childhood DevelopmentWe believe that parents are best suited to train their children in their early development and oppose mandatory pre-school and Kindergarten. We urge Congress to repeal government sponsored programs that deal with early childhood development.

Knowledge-Based EducationWe oppose the teaching of Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS) (values clarification), critical thinking skills and similar programs that are simply a relabeling of Outcome-Based Education (OBE) (mastery learning) which focus on behavior modification and have the purpose of challenging the student’s fixed beliefs and undermining parental authority.

Sex EducationWe recognize parental responsibility and authority regarding sex education. We believe that parents must be given an opportunity to review the material prior to giving their consent. We oppose any sex education other than abstinence until marriage.

While I have issues (as mentioned), with all of them, it’s the “Knowledge-Based Education” one that concerns me the most, and is the main reason for this post. In particular – the idea that teaching someone to think critically, and ask questions is in some how detrimental to a person. The idea that we should teach our children to literally be sheep, who should follow anything said to them by a parent (and in turn any authority figure) without asking the eternal child’s question “why?”  The idea that we should turn our children lose in the world, when they have grown to adulthood, ripe for being taken advantage of. Because someone that they trust, or who is in a position of authority will come along and they will accept at face value what that person says, because they were never taught the critical thinking skills necessary to determine that what is being said, may not be an accurate reflection of how things really are (or in some cases may be outright lies).

What this particular stance also speaks to (as well as the “Early Childhood Development” one), is that they want [Christian] parents in their state to be able to indoctrinate their children from birth, in their particular faith, and then make sure that they don’t encounter anything else that might cause them to question that faith. Or if they do encounter other ideas, that they have been “groomed” so well from birth, that it doesn’t occur to them to ask questions. To be fair it could be a parent of any faith, but clearly this seems to be a response to what these particular members of the GOP have seen as a direct attack on their “good Christian values” of late.

I’ll be honest – that there are people in my country, worse people who are in positions of power in my country, who think like this scares me. I don’t understand how we went from a country that valued Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness, to a country that is moving full on towards denying those basic human rights. They say that they want less government involvement in things, then look to use that very same government to limit the rights of those they deem unworthy.

So of course the choice is to fight back, but it is clear… oh so very clear, that things that worked in the past  – such as protesting, no longer have any real effect on anything. If you don’t have the support of the media, or a large pile of money funding you – it’s like you are completely invisible. It’s really enough to make me despair for my children, and their children – of the country that they will inherit. As the current one seems hellbent on mandating ignorance, and I for one find that totally unacceptable.


(I was going to include some other stances that I had issues with, however in the end felt that it would potentially distract from the main focus of this post, so have chosen not to include them. Just note that there is a large number of other issues that I have with this document, and in many cases they all do have “ignorance”… in some way or an other, as a core component.)

Happy Solstice


Apparently it’s really hard to find good “Summer Solstice” music on YouTube… you’d think it would be easier, but there’s really not much to pick from.

I do really like this song  though, so despite the soft poly feel, and the fact that Herne is actually a forest spirit/ghost, rather than a God, I thought I’d share it with you all.

Here’s wishing everyone a wonderful Solstice!!!

Lyrics can be found here, plus you can check out other music by Dahm the Bard as well.

Enjoy!!

Note: Apparently for some of you, there is an advertisement video below – near as I can tell it’s something that is auto-populated every time I post a link to a video. Just noting that it is not something that I added, or that has anything to do with the rest of my post, and I have no clue how to get rid of it. Sorry for any confusion.

(H) Hexes


So… the other day, after about 40 years of allowing it to be used freely among the Pagan community, Z. Budapest decided to reclaim her chant “We All Come From The Goddess”, and request that others refrain from infringing on her copyright and more importantly stop altering it, especially in ways that add any sort of “men”/”God” related words to it.

On the surface while it seems a bit silly to be worrying about it at this late date,  it can be understandable that an artist doesn’t want their work to be used without their permission especially for monetary gain. What takes this from mere silliness, to the realm of downright crazy, is the following statement that she made… “You steal my song from now will have consequences. You put men into the song, like God,a hex will be activated.

I actually find it rather ironic in a way, because the Wiki page for Dianic  Witchcraft (which I know, Wiki isn’t always the greatest source) states the following… “Dianic… as “positive path” practitioners do neither manipulative spellwork nor hexing because it goes against the Wiccan Rede; other Dianic witches (notably Zsuzsanna Budapest) do not consider hexing or binding of those who attack women to be wrong.”  So, taking into consideration that the Rede is often misunderstood, and that not everyone follows it anyways (especially Witchcraft Traditions which don’t actually have anything to do with Wicca, despite often being misnamed as such), I really have to ask… was a hex really the first thing that sprang to mind in this case? Did she really feel that adding masculine energies, or adding a verse about the God was an “attack on women”?

To be fair, she has since recanted, stating that the original post was “tongue in cheek”, which I have to admit I sort of doubt, and the general consensus seems to be that at this point she’s just trying to do a bit of damage control after all the backlash from her original statement. In general, I don’t think it matters much what she says anymore, as she’s probably lost what little (if any) respect anyone had left for her, considering all the other messes she’s been stepping into the last couple years. However the story did give me a good starting point to this week’s topics – Hexes.

On a personal level, I’m more or less neutral when it comes to the idea of hexing. Even though I’ve been in some pretty rough situations, I’ve not (as of yet) ever felt the need to put a hex on anyone, but I don’t really have any issue with someone who might do so, if there was proper justification for it. There seems to be this huge… “OMG you can’t do that!!” mentality that is pervasive in Neo-Pagan Traditions, particularly amongst those who believe in some form of the Rede. However as mentioned above, the Rede is probably one of the most misunderstood concepts that has been appropriated from Wicca (I’ll go into much more on that when we get to “R”), and despite many claims to the contrary, it does not actually prohibit hexing, or any other potentially “harmful” actions at all.

It still sort of begs the question though – what actions might justify resorting to hexing? In any magical endeavor (no matter what the purpose), it’s generally advised to do quite a bit of careful consideration before proceeding, and it seems rather clear that Ms Budapest may have missed a step or two in that process before issuing her original statement. Of all the potential ways of resolving that issue (or any issue really), I would think that a hex would be a last resort. The sort of thing, where you’ve maybe tried everything else you can think of – mundane and magical, and nothing else has worked. Especially if one believes in the TFL (Three-Fold Law), or some other form of “what comes around, goes around” – I hesitate to use the word Karma, because it too, is a word that has been very much misappropriated, and really doesn’t quite mean what most people think it means, at least not in the contexts they tend to use it in. Anyways… the point is that if you are wishing ill on someone else, even if it’s for a good reason (or what you might perceive as a good reason), you need to be prepared for, and be willing to take responsibility for the potential consequences of doing so.

Thankfully, Ms Budapest was just joking around (or so she says), but really it’s almost mind boggling to contemplate the consequences if she wasn’t. Assuming that she could have effectively invoked a hex in that way (and there seems to be plenty who doubt that she actually could), can you imagine the accidental harm that could have been done? A song that has been more or less in the public domain (whether it was meant to be or not) for 40 years, that has been regularly added to and altered to suit; a song that many Neo-Pagans probably teach to their children, or that they sing at gatherings, not even knowing who originally sang it, who have potentially never even heard of Z. Budapest, all suddenly hexed because of someone who was having a bit of a rant. What sort of consequences do you think she might have faced, if such a thing had occurred, and do you think she would have accepted any responsibility for her actions? I shudder to think.

(F) Fluffy Bunnies


Another topic that I was really going to try to avoid, mainly because I don’t want to seem like a total negative Nelly all the time. However based on some recent conversations, it became clear that I was going to need an outlet to vent some frustrations. Lucky you!!

Many people will use the term “fluffy” or “fluffy bunny” in connection with any sort of “love and light” Neo-Pagan/New Age beliefs or practices, that tend to focus entirely on the “positive” aspects of Paganism, rather than actually looking at the whole picture and accepting that there is a need for the “positive” and “negative” to maintain the general balance of things. While this isn’t always the most ideal view of things, it’s not really what I think of directly when I think of the term “fluffy”.

It is also often used to describe people who are misinformed, and while this is closer to my own definition (and the definition by which many others that I know tend to go by), there is a distinction that needs to be made. Just being misinformed about something, does not make one “fluffy”. There is a ton of misinformation out there, on a variety of Pagan topics, and realistically one could say that there is more misinformation, than actual good information. So just because someone thought they knew something and it turns out not to be true, shouldn’t be an immediate reason to call them “fluffy”.

The core of what makes one “fluffy”, is the act of being “willfully ignorant“. Which means that someone has pointed out that they are misinformed about something, has presented them with facts/details (often along with supporting documentation), and instead of looking over the information, doing their own research on it, and coming to their own conclusions – they automatically dismiss all of it out of hand, continuing to cling, almost without reason, to their original beliefs. Even when all evidence presented, is in complete contradiction to what they thought they knew.

No one expects anyone to take anything at face value, especially in regards to a long held belief. However it should be expected that one will take what has been said, and at least look into it. It’s true that one could probably prove almost anything using “stuff I found on the internet”, however that’s when one has to look to the type of resources that are being presented, and by what authority, or expertise that person has that is relevant to the topic they are writing on. Personal experiences are fine as well, however they should be presented as personal experiences (UPG), rather than outright fact.

Everyone is misinformed about something at one point or another, but it’s when one won’t even consider the fact that they could be wrong, that issues arise. It’s OK not to know something, however it’s not OK to completely ignore potential truths when they are staring us in the face.

edit – it’s probably worth noting that this is not a word that I use all that often, nor do I think it should be used often – which is also a bit of a pet peeve of mine, because I do think that some people use it too freely. I really am (in most cases) willing to discuss something for as long as necessary to help someone get whatever information they need about a particular subject. If I’ve hit a point where I start to consider someone to be “fluffy”, it means that I’ve given up hope, which thankfully doesn’t happen all that often. 🙂