Dolmen grove chronicles

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The Dolmen Grove Chronicles

CONTENTS 1… The Dolmen Grove Land Fund – An interview with Taloch Jameson 2… The Old Town Hall Bell – cd review by Diane Narraway 3…Babalon – Beautiful, Horrible by Louise Lisse 4…Faces of Babalon – book review by Diane Narraway 5…Greening of Man – book review by Mike Wagstaff 6… The Divine Feminine in Ancient Europe – a book review by Daphne Bishop 7…Hawthorn by Andrew Cowling 8…Rapalje – An interview with William 9…Howling at the moon – Exploring the world of the werewolf by Diane Narraway with contributions from Paul Webb, Totem Animals – the Wolf by Cheryl Waldron, and Don’t Keep the Wolf from the Door by Laura Bell 10…Cape Clear and the Banquet – cd reviews by Diane Narraway 11…Diary of the Hedgewitch by Rachael Moss 12 …Lunar Planting by Rachael Moss 13…Midsummer Nightmare – reviews by Helen Sparrow and Jennie Jones 14…The Rebirth by Sarah Johnson 15…Aromatherapy by Sandra Wiseman 16…Corn Dolls by Cynthia Caton 17…Sell Casting by Rachel Patterson 18…Casting a Circle by Cheryl Waldron 19…Word Magick by T.J. Burns 20…Writing Wild – A book review by Thom Wolf M.D. 21…Open my Heart by Shauna Aura Knight 22…The Triple Goddess by Scott Irvine 23…The Calling by Vanessa Ilott Photos in this issue – Scott Irvine, Rachael Moss, Joanna Caswell, Mark Vine, Jennie Jones, Kay Harle, Cynthia Caton and Adam Morgan. Artwork – Sem Vine Unless otherwise stated all other images are from the public domain. Further information on the Dolmen Grove can be found at: All information is accurate at the time of publication and all articles are assumed to be the work of those being credited

THE DOLMEN GROVE The Dolmen Grove is a pagan organisation of mixed spiritual paths established in the early 90s by Taloch Jameson, which over the years has grown from one small circle in Weymouth Dorset, to several clans not only across the UK but worldwide. The Spiritual ethos of the Dolmen Grove has remained the same throughout and is based purely upon the Freedom of the Individual. It is the collective belief that in an age where technology can often dwarf our humanity, it is important that we take control as individuals and embrace our own spirituality in order to maintain the equilibrium within an ever changing world. Although the Grove is not a political organisation preferring instead to focus upon the spiritual, this does not prevent either individual members or the Grove as a collective from playing an active part in humanitarian and environmental issues. There are no hierarchy or titles within the Dolmen Grove as it is our aim to encourage each man and woman to discover their own unique and authentic journey so that their spiritual connection is founded

upon that which works for them as an individual rather than a spiritual rule book set for the masses. The key to our success is the Round Table which is made up of around twenty people from a variety of spiritual paths who uphold the spiritual ethos of the Grove. They not only organise their respective moots but also the festivals and events hosted by the Dolmen Grove. Our Moots are regular meeting places which are held once a month in several areas. Although these are organised by and largely attended by Grove members, non-members are always welcome to find out more about the Grove and enjoy the company of other free thinking people as well as the activities organised by the Moot.

There is a membership in place that enables those who wish to be part of this ever growing Clan to enjoy reduced ticket prices for Dolmen Grove Events, festivals and where stated ‘member only’ Ceremonies and Courses. Although we host many Ceremonies which are open to the general public, to avoid crowding and to allow our members to celebrate free from pressure we also hold members only ceremonies.


THE DOLMEN GROVE LANDFUND Ever since mankind first walked the Earth Paganism in one form or other has formed the basis of our spiritual beliefs, but sadly over the years this natural way of celebrating life became overshadowed by the larger, more dominant religious organisations. 1951 the English Witchcraft Laws were repealed and nearly sixty years on there has been a slow but steady Pagan Revival, which in recent years has started to gain momentum. The Dolmen Grove is one of many organisations that is at the forefront of this revival, having taken the initiative to follow the ancient ancestors by procuring land that will be used for pagan purposes and to establish a temple dedicated to paganism. To many people this would have remained nothing more than an idealistic dream, but to them this was a realistic vision of something achievable and around 25 years ago they took the first steps towards fulfilling their dream of building the first multi - path Pagan temple. This journey began with a few like-minded souls forming a non-hierarchical organisation made up of pagans, all following their own spiritual paths –The Clanship of the Dolmen Grove. In order to find out more about the Land Fund I interviewed Taloch Jameson founder of the Dolmen Grove… Diane : ‘What is the Dolmen Grove Land Fund?’ Taloch : ‘It is a fund by which members and friends who are supportive of the Dolmen Grove raise money in order to purchase a piece of land, that will be used for Pagan activities, such as gatherings and events and on which shall be built a multi-path Pagan Temple that will stand as a monument to the great Pagan revival of our time. Diane : ‘Who will actually own the land?’ Taloch : ‘The land will be set into a Trust Fund to ensure that it remains in the hands of the Dolmen Grove Clan and in order that it maintains its original purpose. Diane : ‘Where is the money collected at moots and events dedicated to the Land Fund kept?’

Taloch : ‘All monies collected for the Land Fund go into a secure bank account that was set up for this sole purpose which is held in the name the ‘Dolmen Grove Land Fund’. The money from this account is NEVER used for any other purpose nor can it be touched by any individual person requiring multiple signatures. All signatories are Round Table members. Diane : ‘What is the Round Table and what its purpose? Taloch : ‘The Round Table is a voluntary group of people who dedicate their time to the spiritual ethos of the Grove, the smooth running of events and act as a voice for the general members of the Dolmen Grove. The table is made up of various pagan paths and all issues concerning the spiritual welfare of the Grove are discussed collectively including questions and ideas that are collected at Dolmen Grove Moots etc. A chairperson is appointed by existing members of the Round Table to oversee matters and to serve as a voice for the Grove when necessary. The Round Table work hard in the organisation of our camps and events ensuring that they run smoothly and are suitable for the entire Dolmen Grove Family. A person can apply for membership to the Round Table after they have been a full member of the Dolmen Grove for twelve months, it is then down to the existing members of the Round Table to accept or refuse the application by means of a vote. MEMBERSHIP OF THE DOLMEN GROVE The Dolmen Grove offers a lifetime membership, which simply means a one-off payment of £20 for those who wish to embrace and enjoy the freedom, Clanship and the right to practice their own spiritual path within the Grove family. Full Members of the Grove will enjoy reduced rates for events such as Gatherings like the Beltane Spirit of Rebirth and Tribal Dreams, and to many other events when stated. A Full member will receive a Membership Card and a unique Membership Number that identifies who they are when wishing to attend Member only Ceremonies and other Dolmen Grove Events. The Dolmen Grove does not have a hierarchy, as we do not believe that people need titles or labels to follow a spiritual path; instead the spiritual ethos of the Grove is facilitated by a Round Table, a circle of people from all walks of life. For further information on the Dolmen Grove and becoming a member please send an email to Also find us on faceboook - thedolmengrove and thedolmengrovemagazine

The Old Town Hall Bell… The Dolmen

This is one of those rare songs that awakens something within, the haunting imagery of past meeting present is evident throughout this song. Both softly theatrical yet completely authentic The Old Town Hall Bell is a beautiful tribute to all those involved. This song has been especially released to coincide with, commemorate and indeed celebrate the re-hanging of the original 17th century bell in the tower of the Old Town Hall, Weymouth On the present building, the bell tower is said to date from the 1600s and it once contained a bell bearing the date 1633 with the initials R.P. were engraved upon it and it was most likely the work of either Richard or Roger Purdue, bell founders of Somerset. The exceptional musical talent that is The Dolmen provide a perfect accompaniment to Mark Vine’s beautifully crafted lyrics while Taloch Jameson’s vocals portray with a rare empathy all that have lived and died in the shadow of the Weymouth Old Town Hall. This song will bring a tear to the eye and a warmth to the soul with that will echo for years to come

The intimacy of ‘The Old Town Hall Bell’ is probably due to the fact that both Taloch Jameson and Mark Vine were themselves personally involved in transporting the Old Town Hall bell from Weymouth museum back to the Old Town Hall. The bell which was reputed to have originally come from Radipole church last rang 52 yrs ago in 1962 and was taken down shortly after for renovation works on the bell tower but due to a shortage of funds the tower was renovated but the bell wasn’t and subsequently ended up in a councillors back garden as an ornament before eventually finding its way to Weymouth museum. As the centuries kissed commemorates its return to the Old Town Hall bell tower.

The Old Town Hall Bell is available to download More information on the Dolmen and their music can be found at

Babalon “Beautiful… Horrible…” You know her already, in the Biblical sense as Babalon, the Scarlet Woman from the Book of Revelations, who, in AD 95 stunned John of Patmos with the wild abandon of her ride on the Seven-headed Beast. Drunk on the wine of her fornications, she has tempted Saints with the lure of her Mystery and exhausted the ardours of mystics and magicians ever since. In 1582 we find her in England, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth Ist, the bastard daughter of the Beast and the Rose. Here it was conjurer and alchemist John Dee who, along with his sidekick Edward Kelley, first called her by the sacred name: Babalond, meaning wicked, or a harlot, in the angelic Enochian language Dee and Kelley were using. Wicked like the Wicked Witch of the East, with her trademark ruby slippers, once her weapons of mass seduction and a harlot like the Eastern Goddess Inanna, the Babylonian Ishtar and the insolent Venus, the morning star and the lust of the witch at the sabbat; the bold, shameless women that the tyranny of Jehovah is still trying so hard to silence. Aleister Crowley renamed her Babalon, the Holy Whore Thelema and under his quill, after centuries of silence, Babalon finally appeared before the World as a Goddess in her own right. But Babalon is more than a deity born of a modern magickal system : she is the wind of madness that blows on the World, the visceral instincts of Sex,

Love and War, the dance of creation and destruction, the Gnosis that dwells within the flesh, the nightmare of religious doctrine! As a Goddess of both Love and War, her wrath is reminiscent of that of the Hindu Kali and her love is heady like the perfumes of the sacred temple whores of Babylon. She wields the rose, the chalice and the sword. Her colour is red, like the sphere of Geburah, like the lights in the brothel window. Love Under Will. I’ve been working with Babalon since 2008. It was Love at first invocation, a presence so powerful and intoxicating that I immediately became completely smitten and obsessed with her. She is rapturous like the Maenad’s song, as pure as your first Love and as terrifying and toxic as the Witchcraft of old. Like a lover, she is on my mind all the time. I stop to the shops on my way home from work to buy flowers and Turkish Delight for her altar. I grow roses devotionally. I write her songs and poems. You cannot know Babalon, a goddess of Love, unless you give yourself completely to her, swear undying love to her, surrender to her inferno. She is the ultimate lover, the One you’ve always yearned for. But make no mistake she is a very demanding mistress. Her path is one of personal transformation, ordeal and challenge and many have burnt their wings at the flame of her bedside lamp as she waits to see if you’ll swim or drown for the love of her. Be prepared to face your demons, reassess your values about love, sex, identity. Likewise be prepared for transgression, light, dark, the very Mysteries of Existence. Above all be prepared for some hard, transforming yet beautifully compelling magickal work. I’ll finish this piece

by quoting the words of Babalon in the Thelemic Gnostic Mass (adapted from Liber al Legis) for this is how she will address you, should you decide to walk her fragrant yet tortuous path: ‘To love me is better than all things; if under the night stars in the desert thou presently burnest mine incense before me, invoking me with a pure heart and the serpent flame therein for thou shalt come a little to lie in my bosom. For one kiss wilt

thou be willing to give all (…) Drink to me, for I love you! I love you! I am the blue lidded daughter of sunset; I am the naked brilliance of the voluptuous night sky. To me! To me!’… Will you comply? Louise Lisse Suggested reading : Peter Grey - The Red Goddess.

Babalon As Babalon I seek the Beast My hunger to fulfil The void which lies within Silent and deep but never still

As Babalon I ride the waves Of ecstasy and desire It’s not for love nor passion But communion I desire

As Babalon I’m the eternal warrior And the eternal whore And the witch that rides the beast Dark Primordial and raw Diane Narraway

THE FACES OF BABALON Written by Linda Falorio, Soror Chen, Mishlen Linden, Nema, Raven Greywalker Compiled by a selection of women who have worked with Babalon, Faces of Babalon is a short yet very informative chapbook written on a very complex subject. The women who contributed to this book have either encountered or worked with Babalon, or have experienced her in some of her varying roles – warrior, whore, intellectual, adversary, educator and manipulator. Babalon can open a door to many things and in only a few pages this book describes comprehensively the techniques for channelling Babalon through the chakras and through tantra. It goes on to teach us of the power of chaos, the power of self and the power of love while simultaneously reminding us that with power comes responsibility to yourself and others. This book is ideal for those considering this path or for those just seeking to learn more about the goddess. It is a well written, informative and an easy to read guide to the many aspects of Babalon. Publisher - Black Moon Publishing (10 May 2008) ISBN-10: 1890399086

BOOK REVIEW THE GREENING OF MAN compiled by Sharon Zak & David Bradshaw Slippery Jacks Press Walk with me through the Ancient Grove. We have known this path for a thousand years with the Oaks, the Birch, the Briar and the Bluebell, the Badger, the fox and the owl...all of which are here to guide and comfort inspire and intrigue... In the words of Chief Seathl ‘We are part of the earth and it is part of us’ The Greening of Man will take you on not just this walk but many, many more. Whenever you need to reconnect, to escape or to journey to the very heart of your true spirituality then light the candles and open these pages. Breath-taking images, paintings and photography combined with intoxicating, haunting poetry and prose to guide you through the ancient grove and all that lies within. Review by Mike Wagstaff The Greening of Man

Book Review ‌ The Divine Feminine in Ancient Europe At a time of unprecedented challenge to the survival of the human race, comes a ringing call to spiritual and systemic renewal with the publication of The Divine Feminine in Ancient Europe, by Sharon Paice MacLeod (McFarland & Company, Inc., 2013). This book is an inspiring, carefully researched work that retrieves the female face of divinity in Europe from the Paleolithic through the medieval eras. In so doing, MacLeod shows that as our ancestors once did, we too can live in harmony with nature and the spirit world. The book invites us to honour the Divine Feminine and learn from the wisdom of the past, not only to discover our own spiritual potential, but to use that knowledge to heal the world around us. MacLeod deftly explores the mythologies, wisdom texts and folklore of Europe as well as the latest findings in archeology, anthropology and genetic science to create a clear view of the Divine Feminine. She highlights the voices of contemporary indigenous leaders, shamans and wisdom keepers as a living compliment to the wisdom of ancient Europeans. Woven together, these elements present a compelling view of what our monotheistic, technologically obsessed civilization has lost, and what can be remembered to guide us into a saner future. Devotees of Arthurian myth and legend will find her chapter on the Celtic origins of the stories and images of the Divine Feminine within those tales both evocative and enthralling. Using Arthurian imagery, Macleod invites us to take up the sword of power and drink from the cauldron of wisdom offered through the Divine Feminine. By doing so, we will be able to know who we truly are. We will remember how to live in right relationship with each other, with the natural world, and with the world of spirit. By Daphne Bishop (herself a writer, editor and researcher based in Boston, Massachusetts. and a lifelong student of Celtic mythology and culture and European history)

The Dolmen Grove T-Shirt, (also in a vest design) is available in various sizes at ÂŁ15

Hawthorn - A Herb for the Heart

Hawthorn - Myth and Magick

Hawthorn (Crataegus Spp) is a valuable herb for the treatment and maintenance of the heart. Herbalists use the flowering tops or (my preference) the berries for all manner of heart and circulatory problems. As a tonic it increases the contraction of the heart muscle, improving the utilisation and availability of energy which helps to reverse age related degeneration.

It is a sacred herb due to its links with the Goddess Cardea as she casts her spells with a Hawthorn branch and stated that it should never be harmed or harvested except on May Eve hence its association with Beltane and the onset of spring. In ancient Celtic culture the felling of Hawthorn was punishable by death as it was believed that destroying a Hawthorn would lead to death of one’s cattle or children.

By dilating the coronary arteries and improving coronary circulation it can help with angina, arrhythmias and palpitations and is reputed to reduce arteriosclerosis. It is widely used to reduce high blood pressure although I often combine it with another sacred herb - Mistletoe for this purpose. More generally I use Hawthorn for people suffering from chronic fatigue or poor energy levels. Hawthorn strengthens a weak pulse and I often find in such conditions that this improves energy levels as we rely on the circulation to supply energy and nutrients to every single cell in our bodies. NB ‌If you have such health problems, selfmedication is dangerous and you should always consult a qualified herbalist

Andrew Cowling BSc(Hons),Dip.Phyt,D.Hyp,RCST,MNFSH,FNIMH. Herbalist, Craniosacral Therapist, Hypnotherapist, Healer. 62 Grove Road Portland DT5 1DB. Tel. 01305 860611.

The flowering of Hawthorn (often simply called the thorn) signifies Beltane; the transition from winter to summer, a time of growth and fertility and was often used in the rituals on that day when boughs were collected to dance around and garland the Maypole; itself a phallic symbol. The scent of the flowers is associated with female sexuality (It was also associated with the Great Plague), and women wore infused oil of May blossom on Beltane as a sexual attractant. The act of drinking Hawthorn tea was believed to aid women in making contact with the sexual aspect of the Goddess as well as themselves; for men it helps them gain a better understanding of this aspect of the Goddess and their partners. It has an association with faeries; they are said to gather where oak, ash and Hawthorn grow together. Solitary Hawthorns standing on hills or near wells were considered to be markers of faeries. Sleeping underneath one, especially on May Eve one risked being carried away by the faeries. A further reason not to harm the Hawthorn was because it was believed to anger the faeries who are protective of trees. Like many plants it is a protection herb, in this case when hung from a high point it could be used to protect against lightning. The bush like nature of the plant (although it can grow to a height of 20 feet) means that it was much used as a hedge plant between 1650 and 1850 due to the enclosure acts and is still used as a hedge plant today.

Andrew Cowling

Although they have become a familiar face around the festivals of Europe, Dutch based folk band Rapalje made their UK debut UK this the faerie ball in Glastonbury. I managed interview with William at Taloch Jameson, lead singer of the Dolmen’s house. Diane: How did Rapalje start? William: We started as street musicians and came more into folk music after frequenting an Irish pub in Groningen Netherlands. Rapalje was originally Macèal and Dieb. Initially they asked me to sing a couple of songs on a cd, which resulted in them asking me to join the band. Diane: How long has the current line-up of Rapalje been performing? William: Dieb, Macèal, David and myself have been playing together now for, around 18 years. Diane: Tell me about the music of Rapalje. William: We play Celtic folk music and although the music is traditional we put our own twist on it using a variety of different instruments There are obvious old favourites like the fiddle, tin whistle, squeezebox, mouth organ, bodhrán, Highland pipes and border pipes and a skiffle favourite; the tea-chest bass. Also there is the gitouki which is our own version of the bouzouki. Diane:Your most recent cd is called clubs where did this idea come from?

William: Macèal is fascinated by playing cards and thought it would be fun to do a series of albums based on this theme. Each of the albums features images of us as the court cards of that suit. The new one which hopefully will be released next year will be called Hearts and will be the first one to feature a ‘title track’. Heart of Steel a cover version of a track originally by Manowar. Although inspired by the band as a whole it is Dieb and Macèal that design all the cd covers. Diane: Rapalje have a very hectic live schedule so how do you fit in recording time? William: It would be easy for us to play every weekend but we have to discipline ourselves to take four weekends of a year just to rest. Where possible we schedule a week in a studio to record an album but this is not always easy. This means we don’t get to release as many cd’s as perhaps we would like. Diane: Where did the name Rapalje come from? William: Rapalje is a Dutch word for rakish which is loud but in a good way such as revellers on a night out. Diane: Rapalje have gained a large following in Europe to what do you attribute this success?

William: We live up to our name when we are on stage it is fun. We play songs that people recognise and can either sing along or dance to, so it is like being at a party with the audience. Everyone is having a good time. Diane: Do people ever question you wearing a kilt on stage? William: I have been asked how come we wear kilts when we are not Scotsmen and I replied it takes real men to wear a dress! In fact one of my proudest moments was singing Caledonia to a Scot and bringing a tear to his eye. Diane: What are Rapalje’s plans for the future? William: To cross more borders…To come back and play more gigs in the Islands(UK), and perhaps we may even get the time to write some of our own songs.

Clubs Rapalje Clubs is the latest album from Celtic folk band Rapalje who right from the onset never fail to entertain. The album begins with the emotive melody of ‘March of King Laois’ culminating with the delightfully compelling ‘The Bog Down in the Valley O’ as Rapalje take us on a charming Celtic odyssey where a variety of emotions intertwine along the way. Musically the album features a vast array of sounds lavishly played by a group of highly gifted instrumentalists. Rapalje then add to the mix a clever selection of balladry as they carefully weave an intricate tapestry of Celtic folk music... This band may hail from the Netherlands but listening to this album it is apparent that the heart and soul of Rapalje is pure Celtic.

For further information

HOWLING AT THE MOON Dark clouds sweep across the night sky tantalisingly revealing the full moon and as the silver moonlight streams into the room, the anti-hero writhes and howls in agony as he, or indeed she wrestles to suppress the inevitable change from human to beast. This has become a familiar scene in film and television series for many years, who could forget the iconic portrayal of the ‘changing’ scene in An American Werewolf in London, paving the way for ‘Dog Soldiers’, ‘Wolfman’ and of course the legendary ‘Thriller’ video from Michael Jackson. However familiar these modern werewolves may be the werewolf myth is far older and the word werewolf comes from the old English ‘were’-an adult male and ‘wulf’-wolf while the word Lycanthrope comes from the Greek ‘lykos’ -wolf and ‘ anthrapos’- man. The werewolf, like the vampire has been immortalized by modern society as an inhuman affliction passed on through the bite of one already afflicted and which can only be cured by a silver bullet. Also like the vampire, the werewolf has its roots in the magic of the ancient shaman. Shapeshifting into animal form is a well-documented magical practice and can be used to explain a variety of mythical beasts, the witches familiar and totem animals. The earliest recorded werewolf legend comes from ancient Greece and implies the origins of the word lykos. It tells of an ancient king of Arcadia called Lycaon who served Zeus’s dead son to him on a plate in order to test whether Zeus was truly omniscient. As a result Zeus turned Lycaon into a wolf, destroyed his children and restored his own son to life.

Interestingly the werewolf’s role changes according to changes in mankind’s spiritual way of thinking. Man’s earliest beliefs took shape in the aeon of the matriarch when mankind worshipped a ‘Mother Goddess’ and was primarily concerned with the need for survival. During this time magic was a natural way of life and the shaman or priest of the society was more often than not the tribal leader or king. This shamanic king would often dress in animal skins for ritual and ceremonial purposes. Likewise the werewolf of this aeon was a magical creature often ritually invoked by the shaman through the wearing of a wolf skin, medicines or potions comprised of natural hallucogens, incantations, in fact anything that would induce an altered state of consciousness. As magic is generally practiced according to the phases of the moon, it is distinctly possible that these early shape-shifting rituals also followed a lunar pattern, establishing the werewolf’s connection to the full moon. By the middle ages the aeon of the patriarch was well and truly established with organised patriarchal religions and its priests replacing the old shaman kings. As a result the werewolf’s place in society changed accordingly. The werewolf now became caught up in the witch hunts of the middle-ages becoming an affliction caused by a witch’s curse or pact with the devil. This is a time where resurrection from death was seen as the ultimate victory and in many areas the werewolf became akin to the revenant or vampire as creatures which have conquered death only to feed off the living.

It was synonymous with death, a creature to be feared and subsequently destroyed either by a variety of herbal remedies including wolfs bane, by surgical means including bloodletting or by exorcism. Ironically in a time where witchcraft was seen as heresy many medieval werewolf cures had their roots in the sympathetic magic practised by witches and ‘cunning’folk. The modern werewolf too has its origins in these dark medieval times with macabre cases documented throughout Europe with Werewolves and Vampires being hunted in the 15th and 16th centuries with the same enthusiasm as Witches. One such case is that of Peter Stumpp (sometimes Stubbe, Stumpfe or similar). Who towards the end of the 16th century lived in a small isolated community outside the town of Bedburg, where day to day lives were built upon trust. In this environment it became much easier to accept that the brutal killer which lurked in the forest and preyed on local livestock, women and children was animal rather than human. Certainly the behaviour was inhumane. Eventually Stumppe was brought to trial and after being subjected to the rack confessed to having practiced magic from a young age and to being a werewolf. Before further torture was administered he claimed that he had made a pact with the Devil who had given him a girdle which transformed him into a large hungry wolf and that by removing the girdle he became human again.

His crimes were not just that of a murderer but a sexual predator and cannibal and his execution which took place on 31st October 1589 was as horrific as his crimes. He was tied to a wheel and flesh was torn from his body using red hot pincers. His arms and legs were then torn from him and broken using a blunt axe before beheading him. His remains were then burned. His daughter and mistress were skinned, strangled and burned alongside Stumpp's body. Local officials then erected a pole with the torture wheel and the figure of a wolf on it placing Peter Stumpp's severed head on the top. This was designed to be warning against such behaviour. Whether there was any evidence to suggest that these attacks were subject to the phase of the moon is impossible to say as there is nothing documented to that effect but there is plenty of evidence being compiled in modern times to indicate changes in human behaviour around the full moon It was high profile cases such as this that set a precedent for modern writers of werewolf fiction where an honest member of the community once a month would change into a murderous beast. It also set the scene for the familiar ‘big bad wolf’ as a warning to children of the predator that lurks in the forest. All of us at some point have sat on the bed reciting the words in a variety of different voices – ‘Oh! grandmother,’ she said, ’what big ears you have!’ ’All the better to hear you with, ’the wolf replied ’But, grandmother, what big eyes you have!’ she said. ’All the better to see you with’ ’But, grandmother, what big hands you have!’ ’All the better to hug you with.’ ’Oh! But, grandmother, what big teeth you have!’ ’All the better to eat you with!’

And scarcely had the wolf said this, than with one bound he was out of bed and swallowed up the little girl. Just as we have huffed and puffed and blown down the houses of the little pigs with a view to gobbling them up. But rarely do we consider their sinister origins. And while the ‘Big bad wolf’ could be killed or scared off by conventional methods, destruction of the werewolf was more complex procedure As werewolves were generally considered to have occurred as a result of magic then folk magic was often the cure. Herbs, incantations and where magic failed then beheading and burning were considered suitably final. The silver bullet did not become a cure for the werewolf until the 20th Century, when a 1935 retelling of the Beast of Gévaudan,a tale in which a gigantic wolf is killed by Jean Chastel allegedly using a gun loaded with silver bullets. Previous versions of the tale imply a variety of methods but no silver bullet, although the brothers Grimm had employed a silver bullet in one of their tales to destroy a ‘bullet proof’ witch. It is not just serial killers that give rise to the legend of the werewolf, clinical changes in the behaviour of some individuals around the time of the full moon are also responsible. As are physical disorders such as Ambras Syndrome which causes hair growth on unusual parts of the body which can be accompanied by extra teeth and Hypertrichosis Terminalis hair grows excessively all over the body. Hypertrichosis Terminalis is also referred to as Werewolf Syndrome.

In these more enlightened times of forensic medicine and DNA testing brutal murders are no longer attributed to animals when humans are responsible and these days wolves are scarcely found in the wild, nor feared, living peacefully in Sanctuaries such as the U.K. Wolf Conservation Trust This trust was initially set up by the late Roger Palmer who had kept wolves for several years. Encouraged by his friend he formed the trust aimed at educating the public and dispelling the myths and misconceptions surrounding them. Since his death the Trust is run as a ‘not-forprofit’ organisation run by five Directors with two full time and three part time members of staff plus over 70 volunteers, along with some notable Patrons. To find out more about the true behaviour of wolves I visited the Trust and spoke to some of the volunteers including Dolmen Grove member Paul Webb Here I learned that as iconic as the image of the lone wolf howling mystically at the moon may be, it is grossly inaccurate. A wolf’s howl is its method of communication and is most commonly used to alert or find other pack members. While wolves may occasionally howl at sirens, church bells etc. they never howl at the moon. It is generally accepted that it is the ability for a wolf’s howl to seem clearer and indeed louder on clear still nights that gives rise to the ’howling at the moon myth’. It is equally likely that lone wolves may also be partially responsible the big bad wolf myth. These are wolves who have been separated from the pack either through age having been challenged by younger males or who have left in search of a new pack. These lone or rogue wolves can display a tendency to be stronger and more aggressive and as such more dangerous. This may be due to the difficulties faced by a lone wolf hunting large mammals in the wild, hence farms being raided bringing the wolf closer to humans.

To the ancient Romans it is the she-wolf who suckles the volatile founder of Rome when he and his twin brother Remus were abandoned by their parents. This she- wolf effectively became the surrogate mother of the Roman Empire and undoubtedly provided some of the inspiration behind Rudyard Kipling’s ‘Jungle Book’.

Paul Webb has been a volunteer at the trust for 11years and informs me that he originally attended an open day and as a result adopted Duma and Dakota. At the time the Trust were asking for volunteers so he joined up. He tells me how in those days with Roger if you made it round a field with a wolf you could become a handler and although these days things are more health and safety oriented he still currently spends a minimum of 2 days a month volunteering. Although he confesses it usually ends up being 3 or 4 days. Paul follows a nature based path within the Dolmen Grove Stag circle and whilst his work at the wolf trust is unaffected by his spiritual path and his passion for the wolf enhances his spiritual growth. To the Native Americans they were teachers and like them Paul believes there is much we could learn from their social structure and pack bonds. There is a Native American saying that goes “When you see a wolf, he has seen you a thousand times before” To many of the North American tribes the wolf featured in their legends, like the bear as something to be emulated, representing strength, loyalty and courage. All of which are attributes found in a successful hunter and some tribes even feature a legend which tells how their forefathers were transformed from wolves into humans.

These days the wolf has a new home in the hearts and imaginations of pagans and spiritualists throughout the world as their totem animals and spirit guides. Yet despite the fact that we have a greater understanding of wolf behaviour and indeed human psychology we remain ever fascinated by the Werewolf. Whether through the ancient magick of the shaman or the vivid imagery of horror stories the werewolf lives on in our imaginations…perhaps in the end the werewolf is little more than a metaphor that brings life to the beast that lives within all of us More information on Wolves can be found at the UK Wolf Conservation Trust UK Wolf Centre Butlers Farm Beenham Reading Berkshire RG7 5NT Tel and Fax: +44 (0)118 971 3330 Office hours are Mon - Fri 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Uk Wolf Conservation Trust

Diane Narraway

Totem Animals – The Wolf “We have doomed the wolf not for what it is, but for what we deliberately and mistakenly perceive it to be – the mythologised epitome of a savage ruthless killer – which is, in reality, no more than a reflected image of ourselves” Farley Mowat – Never Cry Wolf

Fairy tales, as told by the brothers Grimm, have often shown the wolf in a negative light, ‘The Big Bad Wolf’ is portrayed as a creature of evil, a savage and ruthless killer and one that is frequently dishonest. The wolf has been and still is feared by many cultures, yet the Native Americans did and still do revere them as Great Spirit warriors. These social, highly intelligent and organised animals are misunderstood, the epitome of freedom and are a popular choice as a totem animal. Totem animals are guides or souls that walk through life with us, guiding, teaching and protecting us and can be either a real animal or a mythological creature. For some a singular totem or spirit animal will remain with them their entire life, for others many different totem or spirit animals will come into their lives. One will appear only to be replaced later by a different animal depending on the path of the individual, the lessons that need to be learned and the tasks that they must undertake. A totem animal offers its power and wisdom to the individual it chooses to be with, becoming its protector and teacher by connecting its positive traits and characteristics to the individual. The Native Americans belief is that there will be one significant totem animal that will remain with you throughout your entire physical and spiritual life, they acknowledge though, like many other beliefs, that a number of spirit animals will accompany you on your journey through life. The presence of a wolf, either in your life, your dreams or your meditations is a powerful totem; it is not an easily domesticated creature and is telling you to pay attention to your instinctual nature. The wolf teaches you to embrace the freedom life has to offer, just as it does, to keep your spirit alive and to bring your passions into your everyday life.

The Positive Symbolism of the Wolf as a Totem Animal: Finding new paths and taking new journeys Loyalty and independence Intuition; showing you how to use it and revealing to you that you are using well Challenges and how to overcome them Deep connective intelligence Expression of one’s self Reminding you that you are your own wild and free spirit Power and stamina Maintaining balance An awareness of social connections The ability to teach and guide others The Negative Symbolism of the Wolf as a Totem Animal: Representing a perceived threat or feeling of being threatened A lack of trust in your own actions or feelings or in yourself and those around you Warning you of forthcoming challenges Recognising personal boundaries Feelings of self-exposure Re-evaluating what or who is causing negativity in your life Facing tough competition Feelings of being surrounded or being bullied by a ‘pack of wolves’ The Wolf’s howl, especially the idea of howling at the Moon, is a penetrating and primal thing. It is their unique way of being able to locate their fellow pack members; equally it is how they protect the pack and its territories, warning off unwanted strangers. The wolf when in a pack embodies a strong sense of its community but equally has the ability to go solo and will do when pushed out of the pack by the alpha, becoming free. This association with the wolf in your own life can mirror either their strong feeling of

belonging to a community or the sense of freedom experienced by the lone wolf. The wolf teaches you to understand discipline either as an individual or as a member of a group or work-place setting and how to establish harmony in all aspects of daily life. There are both positive and negative sides to having the wolf as a Totem Animal, but I prefer to think of them as light and dark sides; the light side teaches us independence, intuition, intelligence and balance, a powerful spirit guide which

reminds us to pay attention to our emotional needs, while the dark side acts as a warning beacon, reminding us of our vulnerabilities, our darker emotions which if heeded help us to kerb our predatory side and our devouring nature and the possible consequences of it. The wolf points us to a way of perceiving and understanding the world around us, guiding us towards the resources we need - Teaching us how to survive

Cheryl Waldron

Don’t Keep the Wolf from the door “The Wolf has much to show those who are drawn to him so invite him into your life and let him show you his loyalty, wisdom and power" There are a lot of misconceptions about the Wolf, more often than not conjured up images of horror movie werewolves and savage attacks, when in fact this could not be further from the truth. Wolves will mostly shy away from humans, being much more afraid of us than we are of them. The Wolf is a very family focused animal, with each member of the pack having a specific role. By pulling together they work as a team. To a wolf, nothing is more important than his family and its survival. When we look at the Wolf as a totem animal we see that he has much to share with us. We can tap into any one of his characteristics to help us with specific problems or as a general guide in our day to day life. Totem animals act as spiritual teachers and through them we can gain knowledge, power and energy. Sometimes the animal that will choose us will be one we have felt a deep bond and connection to our whole life other times we choose the animal we would like to work with, meeting them through our meditations, drumming or journeying rituals. When the Wolf makes itself known to you, it is normally a sign that it is time to pay attention to your intuition -What is your gut telling you to do? The Wolf survives by instinct and will encourage you to listen to yours -after all, you have it for a reason! If you have a decision to make regarding a situation or a person, ask the wolf to help you listen to and follow your intuition. The Wolf may be asking you to rediscover your freedom. In this modern world of work, bills and regimented life we often ignore that our hearts were once young and free spirited. This aspect of ourselves often gets lost as we get older. Work with the Wolf to bring more freedom, fun and passion into your life. As I previously mentioned, family is very important to wolves. They communicate very well with each other and each member of the pack has specific roles, they are also very close and loyal. Invoke the Wolf's communication, social and team skills to help you at work or with family/friends (your own pack!) I have only briefly touched on a few of the many lessons you can learn from the Wolf as your totem animal. He has much more to teach you. There are many ways to invite the wolf into your life including, symbolic/ritual offerings on your altar, creating wolf artwork, jewellery or through charity work and research at a wolf sanctuary or research centre. The wolf is a very powerful animal in mythology and has several Goddesses associated with it. You could incorporate one or more of the following into your meditative/ritual workings: The Morrigan, Cailleach, Sunna and SkaĂ°i(Skadi).

Laura Bell

CD REVIEW - Ballad of Cape Clear If you have never encountered the Dolmen then this album is a great place to start. The Ballad of Cape Clear is folk rock at its best and is essentially Celtic with all but the first track being originally written by the Dolmen. Present throughout the album is the quality one would expect of the Dolmen. Musically they are brilliant, vocally they are exceptional. There is something unique about the raw tribal drumming of Chris Jones as it seamlessly blends with the Celtic gypsy tones of Matt Tarling’s fiddle echoing the voice of pagans throughout the ages. The vocals of Taloch Jameson provide warmth and depth as he laments the Ballad of Cape Clear and stirs the spirit with We Are Clansmen. The smooth slightly unrefined voice of Josh Elliot lends itself perfectly to Trawler race day acquiring a tone of conviction on Tolpuddle Martrys, while the unique beauty of Kayleigh Marchant’s vocals can be heard on Solstice Past with an added sultry defiance on Twisted at the Seams and the iconic anthem Sisters of the Earth. Ballad of Cape Clear takes us on a journey through the highs and lows of life, reminding us of the things that are important. The things we live for, the things we fight for, those we love and the memories we acquire. It captures the spirit of the Dolmen, making it not just the latest Dolmen album but a true Dolmen experience.

Josh Elliott - Vocals, Banjo, Electric Guitar, Accordion, Whistle, Bouzouki,Charango Kayleigh Marchant - Vocals, Bass Guitar, Whistle, Lyrics on Sisters of Earth. Chris Jones - Drums, Percussion, Cajon Matt Tarling - Fiddle Taloch - Lyrics, Vocals, 6 & 8 String Acoustic Guitars, Whistle, Harmonica, Electric Guitar Mark Vine - Lyrics for Tolpudle Martyrs. Cover Artwork & Original Design - Sem Vine Cover Photo - Joanna Caswell Jameson Buy direct and securely from our website or Download individual Tracks or Whole albums from

The Dolmen …The banquet Since its recent release, I have heard the latest album by the Dolmen described as epic, awesome, and magnificent along with a host of other adjectives all favourable and all hailing this album as a masterpiece. The banquet is a powerfully emotive album that effortlessly blends ori ginal and traditional to make each track uniquely ‘Dolmen’. The sheer beauty and range of Kayleigh Marchants vocal talent can be heard throughout the album from the wistful ‘Devils table’ and seductively sorrowful ‘Hush my lover’ through to the warm sovereignty of Eliza. This combined with the charismatic allure of Taloch Jameson’s voice and accomplished musical genius of Josh Elliot on guitar and the talented Chris Jones on drums provide the album with added warmth and depth. This is definitely the Dolmen at their most innovative as they push the boundaries weaving dark romantic imagery with their own brand of rebel folk music. It is the sheer magnitude of musical talent along with the high standard of their albums that makes The Dolmen so popular and The Banquet both imaginative and enchanting. Pure creative genius!!

Buy direct and securely from our website or Download individual Tracks or Whole albums from

Diary of the Hedgewitch Summer has blossomed into a heady sensuality of colour and fragrance, a symphony of sound, heat, an expansion and a flooding of light penetrating the potent vibrancy of a world that is reaching a crescendo. Creation perfects itself as the divine immortal manifestation of flowers fulfils potentials, ready to wither and spill their experiences into seed. The inexhaustible creative energy that brings forth continued manifestation peaks in the height of the summer Solstice, in an expression of creative power surging in a flurry of abandonment, swollen with the potential of the future that brims with the roots of the past. The fragrance of voluptuous blooms flood our senses, permeating us with fathomless emotions and long forgotten whispers of memories in a world that is ablaze with beauty, evoking Love in the human spirit with lustrous scent, delicate and dense form, and expansion of Light. The divine will of the Sun fuses in passionate union with the alluring seductive rose, a flower of perfect beauty, desire, Love, and a symbol of humanity’s unfurling; where universal life forces unite within the Light of the Sun and the beating of the heart. The receptive blossoms that spread open in the penetrating heat of summer extend further beyond the limits of matter, reaching in yearning towards the Sun, its light shimmering through gossamer petals, pulsating in lust for union with fertilising butterfly and bee. The beatings of a butterfly’s wings resonate in frequency to the flower of its desire. The deep droning of bumblebees as they hungrily drift from flower to flower weave the world with sound, the creative power, threading each atom with vibration, singing a song that is woven eternally.

Life rejoices in the heat of the summer Sun, all is streaming into realisation in the peak of its manifestation. But Life is change, and rhythm, and the fragrant rose that bears its perfect beauty in passionate Love, rips and tears the flesh and heart with its thorns; and the glorious blossom that quivers enticingly in the summer breeze, dies withdrawing into its seeds that carry the experience of the summer within, and is fecundated anew within the womb of the Earth. Germination and birth contain the experience of death, the future imprints upon the past, completing a circle. But life continually creates something greater than its parts. The unfurling flower can be dissected and reduced to its smallest atoms, but reassembled it would never bloom again. So, with the blaze of summer, the strength of Sol’s throbbing life force, comes the boundless source and power of Mother Nature who demands it back to be impregnated afresh in the continual dividing, uniting, transforming, defining, arising and vanishing, simultaneously, in the alchemical dance of creation. “…I am here, the mother of nature, ruler of all the elements, germ cell of the sexes, sovereign of the spirits, queen of the dead, ruler of the heavens, personification of all the gods and goddesses. The domelight of the firmament, the healing breeze of the ocean, the miserable silence of hell all obey my cue; I am one being, yet in many forms, changing customs, and manifold names I am worshipped by the entire earth.” “Speech of the Goddess”, The Golden Ass, Apulejus

Rachael Moss

July Sowing/Planting Calendar Sun Mon

Tues 1

Weds 2

Thurs 3

Fri 4

Sat 5










11.30pm 19

12pm 6

7 2pm

x before 12pm 13


6pm 14


P 10am 20

x all day

9pm 21




x after 6pm


2am 26 11am

3pm 27




10.30pm 31

A 4am

Crops to Sow in July Root/Earth Hamburg Parsley Radish Turnip

Flower/Air Broccoli Flowers

August Sowing/Planting Calendar Sun Mon



Leaf/Water Chard Florence Fennel Kohl Rabi Lettuce




Parsley Salad Spinach




Fruit/Fire Peas Runner Beans

Fri 1

Sat 2


x all day 9


1am 10

11am 12pm







16 4pm


all day 6pm

P 6pm


0am 18






12.30pm 24

23 5pm

10pm 25




A 6am 31




10am x between 10am and 5pm 1pm




Dark Moon




1st quarter

Apogee Perigee North (ascending) node



Full Moon

South (descending) node



3rd quarter

Element Symbols Earth Air Fire

x Taurus


Highest Moon



Lowest Moon

No sowing


Lunar Planting

Lunar Sowing/planting calendars have been around for a long time, usually based on the familiar waxing/waning cycles of the Moon. The sowing and planting calendar that I construct for the magazine is based on the late Maria Thun’s research. Maria Thun started experimenting in the 1950s, initally with sowing radishes, using an astronomical calendar, and relentlessly spent decades furthering her experiments. Her experiements show variations in germination rates and between crop growth characteristics when sown on different days despite soil conditions and seed sources being identical. She linked this to astronomical events, as every two or three days the moon passes into in a different constellation of the zodiac. Through her experiments she discovered that root crops do well when sown and planted when the Moon is in an Earth constellation, leaf crops in Water signs, fruit and seed crops in Fire signs and flowers in Air signs. Other astronomical events such as eclipses, oppositions, conjunctions and trines, and other cycles of the Moon (apogee, perigee, waxing/waning, ascension/descension), she found, also effect plant growth and germination, sometimes detrimentally, as in the case of an eclipse, or favourably, such as during a waxing Moon. Each garden is an individual organism in its own right, though, and the calendar is only a guide. What works well in one location, may not so well in another, and its not just the planets and stars that influence the splendor of a garden but the personal relationship, and the Love and care and Will of the gardener too, for all creation takes place in a garden, and Love is the force that brings things to be. Rachael Moss

A Midsummer Nightmare – A Review

The Portland Witches of the Dolmen Grove A Midsummer Nightmare… Reviews As expected of any Dolmen Grove event, the atmosphere at the Midsummer Nightmare was as warm and welcoming as ever. The revellers, both Dolmen Grove members and non-members, gathered at the beautiful and historic Weymouth Old Town Hall with drinks in-hand, ready to celebrate the coming of summer with music, magic and mayhem- Dolmen Grove style. The highlight of the evening had to be the Portland Witches’ interpretation of Oberon & Titania’s wedding, and while many would say that Shakespeare would have been turning in his grave, I believe he would have applauded this modern day version with a Pagan twist. Of course, as good as the acting was, it did not overshadow the fantastic collective of musicians performing that evening. A great debut set came from the very talented Love Street with an added performance from The Dolmen’s Taloch and Kayleigh rounding off the event . Entertaining as ever was the magickal music of the wonderfully cheeky Pixiephonic, with lovely vocals from Donna and Tess, that really got the audience moving (and giggling, no doubt). Up n coming duo Power Tiger grabbed my attention most of all, with their fantastic cover of Tenacious D favourite ‘Tribute’ and also that of many others as we all descended the Old Town Hall stairs to have a singalong. Not only were we treated to musical talent and acting, the ticket prices included a tasty little buffet and nicely priced drinks. Overall a very successful and greatly enjoyable evening. Can’t wait for the next one!

Helen Sparrow

Bawdy drama, lots of music, and even more banter were among the delights of the Portland witches’ first entertainment evening held in Weymouth last month (June 27). Titled A Midsummer Nightmare, the evening featured a variety of talented and entertaining performers. Familiar and new faces from as far away as Essex came to the event, and weren’t disappointed. The centerpiece was a comical parody of Shakespeare’s wedding of Oberon and Titania (performed by Teach Carter, Scott Irvine, Therese Spooner, Sharon Murray and Diane Narraway). Love and how it can make fools of us all is the theme of this Shakespearean comedy. As such, the love/hate relationship of the dogcollared groom and his dominatrix bride was enthusiastically portrayed by the group. It was difficult to make out all the words above the laughter of the audience, though their bold and colourful costumes won’t be forgotten in a hurry. Also performing was the duo Power Tiger consisting of local up-andcoming guitarist Wynter Prior alongside vocalist Christian Burgess, both talented musicians and wellrehearsed, they played a short and impressive set of heavy rock. Pixiephonic was back with his songs about cups of tea, and Defoe Smith took us back to the 1600s with his nautical poems and songs – some accompanied on his lute. Headlining was Cornish folk-rock band, Love Street. Playing original pieces, it was such a treat to discover such a brilliant band. Think of plinky-plonk piano harmonies, a twanging banjo and pumped up fiddler and you’d be part way to picturing them. As a result of their brilliant performance they’ll play at the Dolmen Grove’s Tribal Dreams camp in August. As the perfect finale to the evening, Taloch, Kayliegh and the Dolmen drummers joined Love Street onstage for a lively performance of The Dolmen’s ‘Go Laddie’. Already plans are afoot for a follow-up evening, possibly in the autumn, again organised by the Portland witches. They’ve set a high benchmark, but they seem to have a knack for drawing out talent. It will be interesting to see what show number two throws up.

Jennie Jones

All Dolmen Grove Moots hold regular meetings where people can find out more about Dolmen Grove membership, ethos and upcoming events including camps, workshops and talks. Portsmouth – The Heathfield Arms 116 Blackbrook Road, Fareham po15 5bz Every second Wednesday of the month, 7:30pm onwards Lonsdale Road, Essex - Scout Hut, Cromwell Road, Grays, RM17 5HT Weekends Weymouth – Old Town Hall High West Street DT4 8JH Weymouth, Dorset (The Dolmen Grove’s oldest and most established moot) Every second Wednesday of the month, 7:30pm onwards Portland - The George Inn 133 Reforne, Portland, Dorset, DT5 2AP Every last Wednesday of the month, 7:30pm onwards Cornwall - Polgooth Inn Ricketts Lane, Polgooth, St.Austell, PL26 7DA Every first Wednesday of the month, 7:30pm onwards Berkshire (Bracknell) - The Boot Public House Park Road, Bracknell, Berkshire, RG12 2LU Every 3 third Wednesday of the month, 7:30pm onwards Poole - The Kings Head6 High Street, Poole, Dorset BH15 1BD Every third Tuesday on the month 7:30pm onwards Moots are advertised regularly on facebook

THE REBIRTH I sit and watch the candles burn, the seldom flames illuminating the corners of a dark room. Its size unknown, empty spaces left to the imagination of moving shadows. Although I am warm the air feels cold, like the Wintersmith himself has brought his very presence into the room. Removing myself from the perch I so often rest upon, I peer out of the dust ridden windows into an all blackened sky. Day and night has become a blur, the sun seems to of availed this place for all too long, light only appears when snow covers the land in an icy grip. Vast sheets of white stretching the length of time. A place once filled with jewels of every colour, nature at its best - A place once known to others as...home. I can feel the winter air approaching, icy particles inhaled to the depths of my lungs. As I exhale a moment of mist hangs before my eyes, before the chilling wind sweeps it away. Soon the snow will fall bringing with it beauty and death, simultaneously entwined in an icy grip that encloses the earth below until its release when new life can begin to grow. After what felt like years of slumber I awaken to a single blaze of golden dust drifting effortlessly through the darkest of shadows within these chamber walls. Lurking in the depths of my very bones I sense that the long awaited transformation has come to the land outside of the window. The rebirth has begun. From a seedling to a stem ‌ from the stem to present leaves, until eventually a single bud appears, and with the warmth of a burning sun blossoms to display natures colourful beauty.

Sarah Johnson

Manuka Essential Oil Leptospermum Scoparium

Manuka is an ideal essential oil to take away on holiday or keep in your bag during the summer, as it is an antidote to insect bites and stings. By simply applying this oil onto the affected spot it will reduce pain and swelling and prevent the situation getting worse.

The health benefits of Manuka Essential Oil can be attributed to its properties. It is used to prevent dandruff and as an antidote to insect bites/stings. It is anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory, anti-histaminic, and anti-allergenic, cicatrisant, cytophylactic s well as a deodorant as it prevents body odour. It is a nervous relaxant. Manuka is one of the newest entries in the book of aromatherapy, as its uses were only discovered quite recently, although its medicinal uses were known among the original inhabitants of New Zealand, to which this tree is a native. The scientific name of Manuka is Leptospermum Scoparium and its essential oil is at times more prized over the Australian Tea Tree oil, due to its wide range of medicinal uses. The essential oil is derived from the leaves of Manuka through steam distillation and the main components of this oil are caryophyllene, geraniol, pinene, humulene, linalol and leptospermone. The concentrations of the components in this oil vary according to the height of the tree which the leaves are extracted from. Its Anti Dandruff properties help to maintain the moisture and oil balance within the scalp preventing degeneration of the skin while reducing the risk of infection. It can be either added to bath water or blended into a carrier oil and massaged into the scalp.

It can effectively reduce inflammation of any type whether it is in the nasal or respiratory tracts resulting from common cold, the digestive system caused by overeating spicy food, the circulatory system caused by toxins (venom, narcotics etc.) getting into the blood stream or any other causes including fevers, infections etc. As an Anti-Histamine this oil checks the production of histamine offering relief from the continuous coughs that occur alongside allergic reactions. Also it is Anti Allergenic so if you are allergic to pollens, dust, pets etc. Manuka oil will either reduce or cease the hyper reactions thereby offering effective relief from the allergy. Manuka oil helps scars and marks on the skin to fade away by promoting new cell growth in the affected parts while protecting the wounds from infections. It can be given to patients who have suffered wounds as a result of accident or surgery. As a Nerve Relaxant it promotes a relaxed feeling by fighting depression, anxiety, anger, stress and nervous afflictions/disturbances, making it also good for hypertensive people whose blood pressure shoots up at slightest anxiety or tension. It blends well with: - Clary Sage Clove, Geranium, Lavandin, Lavender, Marjoram, Nutmeg, Oakmoss, Pine, Rosemary and YlangYlang.

Macadamia Carrier oil Macadamia integrifolia

This oil comes from a nut which is widely grown mainly in Australia, New South Wales & Queensland. It is also grown in Kenya.

The high level of emollients along with the high quantity of omega 7 makes it perfect for use in skincare products as it is very compatible with the

The faint odour of Macadamia comes from the nuts and remains present in the oil when it is extracted by cold compress.

skin and hair. It is naturally rich Vitamins A, B1, B2, B6, C, E, together with a range of proteins and minerals.

Macadamia is a tropical evergreen tree which produces an abundance of small fragrant white or pale pink flowers which ripen to form a leathery outer shell that splits at maturity revealing the nut or seed. Each of these may mature to yield between 1 and 20 fruits. Macadamia nut is highly emollient and deeply moisturizing with very good stability at room temperature.

In skincare Macadamia is perfect for facial and body moisturiser’s and comes into its own when mixed with a cream for reflexologists where a highly nutritious but slow absorbing cream can be created. This oil may be beneficial for mature skin as it has anti-aging properties and has been found useful in sun preparations. Taken internally Macadamia oil is an effective laxative.

Sandra Wiseman 01702 523951 or 07804138585 E mail

Wheel of the year

February (Imbolc) -The Enchanted Market, Wokingham, Berks. March (Ostara) -Psychic fayre and Spring Ball, St Austell, Cornwall April (Beltane) - Spirits of Rebirth Camp, Dorset 27th June -A Midsummer Nightmare 22-25th August - Tribal Dreams, Gathering of the clans September (Mabon) – Bardic event October (Samhain) - Psychic fayre and Wytches ball December – Yule Ball

Corn Dolls Corn dolls are associated with the harvest and can be crafted in a variety of ways. Their physical structure is built from corn husks, cobs, and silk. For me the corn doll has evolved from a symbol of the harvest to a symbol of my Harvest. Each year, I make a corn doll as part of my Autumnal Equinox rites. The preparation begins long before the first ear of corn is cut. She is built from my magical workings spanning from Yule to the Autumnal Equinox with the completion of the cycle at Samhain. I always save something from each sabbat ritual to add to the doll’s construction. With the return of the light at Yule, I focus on my goals for the following year, some of which are standard from year-to-year, others which are new. In addition, there might be something special that I want to work towards. I don’t always know exactly how I want the year to manifest, but I know the intent will come. Imbolc sees the days grow visibly longer. This is the time when I prepare items for the doll. I make a Brigid’s Cross to add to the doll in honour of my relationship with the goddess. At Ostara, the Spring Equinox, I begin my growing season by charging seeds or tending perennials to cultivate during the months ahead. These plants not only represent my goals for the coming year but the act of growing, tending, and harvesting bonds me to my local environment. Depending on the weather, Beltane may see some flowers ready for an early harvest. It is a time of action when I am starting to see the results of my efforts.

At the Summer Solstice, we experience the zenith of the Sun and its wane in strength. At this point I am checking on how my goals are progressing. What have I achieved? What needs to be nurtured? I take clippings of plants throughout the year to dry as they come into season. I also save other items such as feathers, animal fur and shells not only to remind me of a particular place and time, but to bind me to it. I celebrate Lughnasadh as the first harvest where I accept responsibility for my actions and if I am lucky I have something significant manifesting. I bless ears of corn as part of my sabbat rite. Some of these ears will be eaten and others given as offerings. The best will be dried and used to construct the corn doll. The Autumnal Equinox (Mabon) is all about giving thanks to the Universe for the abundance in my life. I construct the corn doll with the various components that I have saved all year. During my rite, I pass over the responsibilities from the old doll to the new. Both dolls are placed on the altar,the one whose job is complete and the one whose work is just beginning. The new doll is charged and tasked. She is brought before the elements and the gods. Pieces of jewellery are passed from one to the other. Newly embodied, her charge is written on a scroll that she carries: to bless all that we want to protect and keep away all that is not wanted in our lives. The corn doll whose time has ended remains on the altar until just before Samhain. At Samhain, I release the old doll by burning away her physical body and allowing her spirit to rise. I also burn any old spells, Brigid’s Crosses, and anything else that needs releasing. This is to clear away old energies and allow new manifestations to come through. Cynthia Caton

Spell Casting One of the first questions I ask someone that is new to the Craft is “why do you want to become a witch?” invariably one of their first answers is “because I want to cast spells”. This is usually followed up with my speech about spell casting being a very small part of the Craft and in fact I know a few witches that don’t cast spells at all. However, spell casting can be a very useful tool to work with. At the base of the Craft is energy work, whether we are casting spells, working in ritual or healing – whatever we do involves working with energy in some form or another. Spells are just that – working with the energy around, the energy of the elements and if you want to add it in, the energy of herbs and crystals too. I always issue a word of caution to those new to spell craft – be careful, spells have a nasty habit of going off in unexpected directions and the end results are not always what you anticipated or really wanted. You have to be very careful with your wording, sending out the intent that you “want lots of money” for instance can be dangerous. You may end up with a huge amount of cash but what if it comes in the form of inheritance and somebody has had to kick the bucket to provide the ‘lots of money’ for you? I have personal experience when I was very new to the path of working with banishing spells. I gathered all the goodies together to work my spell and frivolously sent out the intent that I wanted to banish all negativity from my life. Whoah! I was not expecting the results to be so purifying. Not only did it get rid of the negativity I wanted it to but it also got rid of quite a few of the people within my list of friends and aquaintances – not literally I might add, I didn’t actually kill them off but they started to drift away and not keep in contact any more. Everyone has negativity within them, we need the balance – so be careful what you wish for! Choose your words carefully!

I know it sounds boring but if there is a mundane solution to your issue or problem I would try that first. Unless it is for healing I would recommend using spells as a last resort, try all the other avenues first, you might be surprised how much influence you have without setting up a spell process. As a kitchen witch I do like to keep things simple, I don’t have the time, money or inclination to faff about with lots of ingredients and tools. A spell can be as straight forward as standing in the light of the full moon and asking the goddess for her help. Another easy one is to work with a hag stone (a stone with a hole in), run your thumb around the hole in the stone three, six, nine or twelve times stating your intent – this seems to work especially well for weather spells. My favourite spell work is candle magic and again this can be as simple as making a wish with a birthday cake candle. You can layer up the levels of energy in spell work especially with this type of magic. Start with your candle and match the colour of it with your intent. There are lists all over the place of colours and their magical correspondences but go with your intuition it will have the best result. You can add to the energy by dressing the candle with essential oil and even more by then rolling the candle in crushed herbs – all adding to the strength of the spell.

I like to use the rolled beeswax candles, they come in all sorts of colours, burn quickly so you don’t have to sit for hours and are inexpensive. Also if you warm them in your hand you can carefully unroll them and fill them with crushed herbs then roll them back up again. The result is a candle packed full of power. I do like rhyming chants for spell work but it isn’t essential that they rhyme which is good because a poet I am not. Casting circles and calling in the quarters before you do your spell work can also be done prior to casting your spell although I tend not to if I am working at home because my house is already well protected. Like all things it is down to personal choice and what works for you.

My only words of advice are – be responsible, think about all aspects of the spell before you send it out into the universe, be aware of all possible outcomes and remember that what you send out there comes back…good or bad. At the end of the day the most important aspect of any spell casting is the power of your intent, if that is strong enough then the world is your lobster!!! By Rachel Patterson

Casting a Circle Casting a circle is a generally accepted practice, done by many Pagan and non-Pagan paths. This article is intended to offer some insight as to how and why we cast a circle. Practicing magick and ritual in your own home, grove or temple is a safe and private thing to do. Yet when we go outside however, into the woods, local park etc. we suddenly become open to the world around us. We want to be able to focus on our magick and we can do this by forming a cocoon of protection around ourselves - we cast a circle. If you are new to the craft, watching somebody cast a circle can be a confusing thing to witness. Some use an athame or a wand, others a staff or a pointed finger to direct energy. Some people choose to use visualisation either alone or alongside their tools, others additionally use visual aids to show a physical circle using herbs, flowers, salt or cords all of which to the new Pagan can be confusing. So what is a circle of protection? It is a 3dimensional sphere. It surrounds us completely like a giant bubble or zorb ball. It provides a purified boundary and once inside of this boundary, we are neither on the material, physical plane nor the spiritual one; we are on a bridge that links them all. The circle is our own personal shield or barrier against all external forces, but at the same time it keeps in all of the energy we create within it, until we decide the right time to release it. The circle is a giant filter, keeping in the good or that which we choose to keep in, whilst keeping out the negative energies that are unfavourable to us or our workings. The circle we create becomes our own private sanctuary, our own temple where we can communicate with our Gods and Goddesses. When casting a circle we usually do so ‘doesil’. This involves working clockwise, through the cardinal quarters starting from East through to

North using our chosen method to direct our energy. While casting the circle, we use our intent and our imagination to form a prefect sphere around providing us with a physical refuge from the hustle and bustle of the world. It is a sacred place of meditation, of divination, a place of magick and ritual. It is a created force, i.e. one that you have created either alone or as a group, with no beginning and no end; symbolic of the Universe and all within it, an extension of your own aura, merging and becoming one with the Universe. There are many ways to cast a circle as explained before, but I would like to share with you how I cast a circle, and please know that this is not the only way, the right way, just my way. I begin by cleansing the area with incense. Sometimes I use incense sticks (joss sticks), other times I use a censor or a cauldron with a charcoal disc in it and some loose incense that I have made myself specific to the occasion. Often I use water to further cleanse the area by sprinkling or pouring from a bottle or other vessel. Once I am satisfied that the area is fully cleansed, I cast my circle. Depending on the situation or the people I am working with, the tools I use may differ. If I am working with a small group of people, I like to use an athame, a wand or a staff to direct energy while visualising a light/an energy forming the circle I create. If I am alone, I use visualisation only. When in a large group, I like to encourage everybody that wants to be involved to manifest a perfect circle of energy and protection. To do this, we would walk, together doesil (clockwise) drumming, clapping and sometimes dancing. I then think, or say out-loud something similar to “I cast this circle as a boundary of protection between myself and the realms of the Gods and the Elements” And so the circle is cast.

Cheryl Waldron

Ritual for clear communication Spells fall from our lips each time we speak and from our fingers each time we write: “Be careful,” is a protection spell, “I want that,” is a spell of manifesting and “I promise” is a spell that casts our personal integrity into the world. Knowing words carry power, a wise Witch uses care in speaking and writing. You don’t have to be a professional writer to benefit from an improved relationship with words. Day-to-day communications with friends, family members and co-workers deserve the same thoughtful efforts as any other type or writing, perhaps more. Electronic communications are a breeding ground for misunderstandings which could usually be avoided if we took a moment to proof read before hitting “send.” All types of magick depend on the clarity of the practitioner. To bring about more clarity in your written and spoken communications, perform the following ritual each month. The optimal time for this work is the first Wednesday after the New Moon. If the moon happens to be in Gemini, the sign that rules writing and communication, even better. Adorn your altar with colours that correspond to the Eastern Gate, the direction of clarity and communication. If your tradition recognizes another direction as the source of clarity, honour that instead. Include in your sacred space: A purified piece of turquoise (one you’ve cleansed of past energies through ritual purification) A new yellow candle A scribing tool Amber resin for burning, an incense charcoal and censor A symbol or statue of Seshat, Egyptian Goddess credited with inventing writing and honored for clear communication. Symbols of Seshat include a scribe’s pen, papyrus scroll, or a bouquet of ‘seven-petal’ flowers such as Star Flower, (Rudbeckia Coreopsis) or some types of Echinacea or a seven - pointed star. Purify and cast a circle according to your tradition. Invoke Seshat with these or similar words: Mighty Seshat, please enter my circle. O Lady of Builders, Mistress of Books, Creator of Writing, bless my rite with clarity and purpose. Imbue my writings with sincerity and my words with integrity. Help me to communicate the truth of my heart in all ways. So mote it be. Inscribe a seven-pointed star, a symbol of Seshat, on the candle. Burn some amber in your censor and pass the candle through the smoke seven times. Each time repeat this chant: My words are webs I spin with care I am thoughtful with each word I share Light the candle. Meditate on the flame while holding the turquoise stone in both hands. Focus on charging the turquoise with the energy of clarity. Imagine yourself enjoying the benefits of clearer communication, writing and speaking more effectively in all areas of life. Make at least once concrete plan on how to improve communication. Perhaps slow down when you write, think before you speak and/or use Spellchecker. When ready, thank Seshat and the other entities you invited into the sacred space. Snuff out the yellow candle and release the circle. Keep the candle and turquoise in your writing space to access their energy at any time. Or, keep the candle at home and place the turquoise in a purse or pocket to use as an inconspicuous talisman anyplace and anytime clear communication is needed.

TJ Burns

Writing Wild: Crafting the Pagan Memoir Author: T.J. Burns Publisher: Pagan Writers Press Cover Art: Angelique Mroczka ISBN: 978-1-938397-82-0 Other books by this author: The Ones Who Dance Alone: Full Moon Celebrations for the Solitary Witch

I am not a writer but I enjoyed this author’s first book about full-moon celebrations so I was excited to purchase Writing Wild: Crafting the Pagan Memoir. I bought the print version from Amazon where I found the best price. At 13 dollars and change I thought it was a little expensive because it is a slim volume. But it really is packed with information and I appreciated the blank pages provided in the print version. Each chapter contains writing prompts and different exercises so having a place to write directly in the book was convenient. Writing Wild is a step-by-step guide that explains the process of constructing a memoir. In each chapter T.J. introduces a different aspect of writing, such as how to make an outline, and offers suggestions for completing that step. I especially appreciated how she combines practical writing instruction with spiritual practice. T.J.’s background in Witchcraft is definitely present in her writing, but I wouldn’t say this information is limited to Witches or neo-Pagans in general. I think almost anyone with an open mind who’s looking for ways to understand themselves better will relate to what this author has to say. T.J. practices what she preaches and uses snippets of her

own memoir as examples of what to do, what not to do as well as offering ways to apply her suggestions which I found it very helpful to see directly applied to a piece of writing. Her personal writings are touching and where her style really shines. I get the feeling a memoir may be coming soon from this author, if so, I’ll be at the front of the queue to buy it. Throughout the book T.J.’s writing style is warm, friendly and positive. Her encouraging manner has actually got me thinking about writing a memoir—which is something I never thought I’d do. But now that I better understand the personal value of one I think it could help me finally put some unpleasant past issues to rest and appreciate my present life more fully. I recommend this book for anyone who enjoys keeping a journal and would like to get more out of it and certainly for anyone who wants support and instruction for writing a memoir. My only criticism is the price of the print book though I am using the blank pages. If your budget’s tight, buy the ebook and a notebook to write in. Thom Wolf M.D.

My heart has broken. Over and over, breaking like shattered glass. I have heard the Rumi quote, “The wound is the place where the Light enters you.” I’ve experienced many times how this wisdom is applied in personal spiritual work that the heart must break in order to let the light of the divine enter. Most people try to avoid heartbreak. Indeed, I pray for it. “Break my heart, let the light in,” I ask the divine, my gods. I struggle with feeling, with being able to feel. I learned to bottle up my emotions when I was young as a defense mechanism. And it was great at keeping me safe, keeping me sane. It kept me from harming myself when my peers abused me day after day. Later on, my defenses were what kept me from people. I rejected them before they rejected me. And the walls no longer served me. Opening myself up to feeling, to love, became difficult. As an adult, it’s not like I can flip a switch. Sometimes I have been grateful for the pain of heartbreak—at least it meant I was feeling. There are days when that pain has felt like a victory. Yet, when I’ve been rejected, it’s been hard to keep centred. And there are those nights, those lonely nights where the fears of, ‘Will I be alone forever’, creep up in the dark moments, those dark nights of the soul.

When I feel that heartbreak, I know that the light is coming. There is still the hurt, the anger, the fear, the loneliness….It’s a deep ache that has no words. Within me, it feels like I’m hiding in the darkness, sobbing with no one to hold me. My heart breaks…and then, I wait for the waters and light of the divine to fill me up once again. When I’m closed off or walled in, when I’m not feeling, then my heart is stagnant. I am not connecting to the spirit of the world around me. Heartbreak knows no boundaries; it is not something that is bound by religious tradition, belief or culture. It’s not about a specific spiritual path because it is a part of all our paths—because we all are human. Most of us have experienced sorrow, loss, joy, love, or some other powerful emotion that has opened up our hearts. Whatever your tradition - there will have been a time when something opened your heart. What did you feel, what did you learn? What brought you to that connection? Find those aching sweet moments that unite you with the divine power of the universe. Shauna Aura Knight

When I feel that ache of the stained-glass chalice of my heart shattering once again, I experience that piercing gratefulness to be feeling, but there is also the pain. This must be what the Celtic shamanic texts referred to, that the cauldrons of our heart and head are tipped according to our experiences of sorrow or joy. There is a deep spiritual wisdom in the heartbreak forged in the depths of sorrow or power of love.

Shauna Aura Knight is an artist and the author of the The Leader Within, Ritual Facilitation, and Dreamwork for the Initiate’s Path, as well as several fiction titles. Shauna teaches and writes on the transformative arts of ritual, community leadership, and personal growth.

The Triple Goddess

The old woman looked across the abyss of Winter towards the beginning of Spring and saw the young beautiful maiden standing at the gates of Imbolc. Between them in the darkness was the transition of one season into the next where the old woman will transform into the young woman she is looking at. The old woman is Cailleach, the Crone aspect of the Triple Goddess. Cailleach thought back to when she first arrived in this realm; the world sandwiched between the Otherworld and the Underworld. It was the first day of Spring and she had descended from Annwn, a place outside of space and time in the Otherworld. It was her responsibility to awaken the Earth from her frozen slumber. Back then she was the Maiden, innocent with a zest for life, a carefree girl in search of herself and whatever experiences life had to offer. She knew she had been here before but her memory was lost. All her feelings and emotions were new to her. Life for her was an adventure while she grew through puberty and her thoughts changed to boys. At the Spring Equinox she met and fell in love with the handsome Maponos, the Divine Child who had recently arrived from the Otherworld. As the Sun grew stronger so did the Maidens love for Maponos. The Earth became fertile and nature exploded with life in the forests and valleys. The Maiden and the Divine Child would walk hand in hand across the land; their love grew stronger like the plants around them and new born creatures frolicked in the leafy forests as the land blossomed in the warm sunshine and lengthening days.

The community worked together preparing the land to grow the crops that would sustain them during the winter months. At the arrival of Beltain the Maiden transforms into the Bride and Mother when she marries the Divine Child and experiences the gift of motherhood. Her whole outlook on life changes and she becomes protective of all life as she learns to love and care for those in need. Feeling neglected Maponos spends much of his time in the forests hunting wild boar. Whether fate or foul play at the Midsummer celebrations, Maponos is fatally injured during a hunt causing him to return to the Otherworld leaving the Mother vulnerable and alone. The Cailleach remembers the pain, the hurt and the loss of her husband, making her focus her energies on the protection of the child growing inside her and the rebirth of the Divine Son. Cernunnos, the Stag Lord who has been residing in the forests encouraging fertility to blossom since Beltain enters into the life of the Mother Goddess and feeling responsible for the death of the Divine Child he ventures out of the forest to console the Mother to be. It is through Cernunnos that the Mother learns of her role as the triple moon goddess, the divine feminine energy that is woven alongside the Sun God, the male creative force of the universe. Through Cernunnos the Goddess learns of the aspects of the triple moon. The waxing, or growing moon is the Maiden, or Virgin energy and is the time to start a new activity with the guidance of the White Goddess. The Red Goddess guides the energies of the full moon as the Mother, or Bride aspect. It is the time of growth; the progression of the activity.

The third aspect, represented by the waning, or dying moon is the Black Goddess as the Crone, or Hag using the moons energies to bring the cycle to its conclusion before the abyss of the new moon. As the sun gives way to the increasing darkness after the summer solstice the Mother becomes more aware of the unborn child growing inside her. Despite the shorter days the warmth of the sun is still powerful enough to bring the harvests to their conclusion. For the Goddess it is a time of reflection before she ascends to the Otherworld to give birth at the Winter Solstice and once the harvests have been gathered and the nights have drawn in the Mother becomes the Crone, Cailleach who works her magic from the spirit world. She possesses great wisdom and sees beyond the illusion of the physical world. It is the Crone that keeps the traveller on their path, inviting them to warm themselves in her blaze along the way. Cailleach remembers all that has gone before, all that will be and all that is yet to come. She knows that once her child has been born they will again both return to the material world where they will fall in love again and marry. Mostly what she will remember is her name; Bridget. Scott Irvine

The Calling On clouded day of pale grey hue my minds fills with thoughts of you and dare do I, in rain filled light, allow my Soul to take flight And with joy I soar in daydream delight, to another lifetime and land of my birth right. Whether of windswept cliff or dark forest be I hear my own enchanting me. Over oceans that swell and over the dales my heart calls to a grove hidden deep within Wales and my Sisters of the Island do welcome me back as do my kinfolk along the highland track. Whether of windswept cliff or dark forest be I hear my own enchanting me. The Ancients sing of Bards of yore, My Soul breathes deep of misty Moors As the essence of their mysteries, through time, do infuse me their blood is my blood, my destiny. Whether of windswept cliff or dark forest be I feel my own enchanting me. As they chant my Soul does dance their Earthly rhythm does so entrance I yield to them my mortal shell, my Soul is home forever to dwell. Whether of windswept cliff or dark forest be I am with my own, my destiny Vanessa Ilott (RavenSpell)

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