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Welcome everyone to another issue, We would like to dedicate this issue to Tylar and Shawn and ask that everyone take a moment and read their story in the Personal Journey's section. They are in need of our help so please open up your heart's to this wonderful family and help them where you can. From all of us here we send you our love and blessings, you have our full support and we dedicate this issue for all that you have done and for all those that you have helped now it's time for someone to help you... Love and Light; Sweet Dark Angel, Oak, & Andrew
The Personal Journey of a freind of mine, Shawn, and his son Tylar. I met Shawn thru a friend on facebook, as soon as I read his story My heart ached for him and I immediately emailed him letting him know how strong I thought he was. And his Boy Tylar with the beautiful smile of an angel. Tylar was born with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy it is hereditary but it can come without notice, Mostly boys~ less than 1% girls. Its a genetic disease where his muscles deteriorate. Without stemcell research there will never be a cure. Shawn has been with his son all along. 5
Tylar never crawled as a child, his calves were also very large. At the age of 3 he began to what is called gatewalk or kind of wobble. By the time he was 7 he was wheelchair bound. His family was told by the age of 12 he would die, he was very severe. Shawn chose to have full custody and worked as long as he could until Tylar condition worsened at the age of 15. Tylar could no longer use his wheelchair and became bed ridden. Cps was called on Shawn for his sons extremely thin appearance which was a result of his condition. Despite the pressure from insurance agencies to put him in a home, his father wishes only to have him at home in the company of family to live out what is left of his life, instead of in a home in the company of nurses and strangers.
Tylar and Shawn are 2 of the most amazing people you will ever meet, they have been through so much but their only desire is to help others so they do not have to go through what all they had to endure and to spread the word out what this disease does and help advocate for a cure. Shawn is a wonderful father and has sacrificed everything so that Tylar could have a somewhat normal life and be tended and cared for by those that matter most and that is family. There have been many up hill battles in trying to get help so he can support his son and make sure he has all the aid he can possibly have, just trying to get the school to set up a program so Tylar could attend school was a long drawn out fight, just to set up skype so he could still be apart of the class just like normal kids, it's these little things that make a difference and that no one should have to fight for. He has had to fight with Dept. Soc. Services just to get enough money to cover the bill's and leaving him with $100. to live on and only $39. a month in food stamps. I look at the struggles they have been through and yet Tylar keeps a smile on his face and want's nothing but the best for his Dad and to share his story with others to give them hope and bring more attention about this disease and the toll it takes on them and their families.
Tylar and Shawn are true ambassadors to this cause and they need our help let us be good stewards and help them out and continue to fight for families like this, we ask each of you to open up your heart's and even if it is to stop by Tylar's page and give him good wishes or to donate and help them get by better, or to just support their cause and help get legal legislation pasted to help families like this so they do not have to struggle and worry about how their going to get by. Link for Cure Duchenne Cause on FB Please join! http://www.causes.com/causes/635094-help-shawn-and-tylar-family-with-muscular-dystrophy? m=a18bde72&template=template_cause/recruitment&causes_ref=uhura_fb_email
A Video I made of Shawn and Tylar~ back in the more mobile days, and now more recently bedridden and still smiling his beautiful smile! http://www.causes.com/sharings/1119085
For those that would like to help this family out and they really could use any help you can send donations to either their pay pal or address. To send a donation to their paypal simply log in to paypal and enter send money the email address is email@example.com send as gift. or send directly to their address at Shawn And Tylar Zielinski 1389 East Lykers R.D. Sprakers New York 12166 All donations will go mostly to food, as they are down to very little and need our help! Thanks for finding it your heart to help this struggling father.
Moon Phases First Quarter 10/04/2011 Full Moon
Last Quarter 10/20/2011 New Moon
Farmers Almanac for October
Skywatch: Saturn reaches it's unseen conjunction behind the Sun on the 13th.The month belongs to Jupiter,which rises at sunset in Aries,is near the Moon on the 13th,and is closest to Earth on the 27th at a blazing magnitude -2.9.Appearing almost 50 arcseconds in width and looking wonderful through telescopes,Jupiter makes it's closest visit until 2022.No other planet is worthwhile this month.Mars is still not bright,as it rises at 1:30 a.m.at midmonth.The 27th brings a close conjunction of the Moon,Venus,and Mercury,but it can be seen only from the far south,below Miami. Moon phases. First Quarter.3rd at at 23:15 Full Hunter.11th at 22:06 Last Quarter.19th at 23:30 New Moon.26th at 15:56 Meteor Showers(we have two.) Draconids.Peaks-Oct 8.Range-Oct 6-10. Best viewing-Late evening.Point of origin-North west. No.per hour-6-10.Moon phase-Gibbous,sets by 3 a.m. Associated comet-Giacobini-Zinner. Comment-Can peak to 500/hour(rarely) Orionids.Peaks-Oct 21.Range-Oct 2-Nov 7. 9
Best viewing-Predawn.Point of origin-South. No.per hour-15-23.Moon phase-Crescent,rises after 2 a.m. Associated comet-Halley. Comment-Not spectaculat,but reliable. Full Moon ritual. This is a time of thanks and of letting go of the past.Honor those in all realms,particularly the animals,that have given their lives to sustain and maintain yours,and ask their understanding in that sacrifice. Birth stone. October child is born for woe, And life's vicissitudes must know; But lay an Opal upon her breast, And hope will lull those woes to rest. St.Luke's Little Summer.October 18th
Yom Kippur 10/08/2011 Yom Kippur (Hebrew: ···· ········ or ··· ·········, IPA: [·jom ki·pur]), Also known as Day of Atonement, is the holiest day of the year for the Jewish people. Its central themes are atonement and repentance. Jews traditionally observe this holy day with a 25-hour period of fasting and intensive prayer, often spending most of the day in synagogue services. Yom Kippur completes the annual period known in Judaism as the High Holy Days (or sometimes "the Days of Awe"). Yom Kippur is the tenth day of the month of Tishrei. According to Jewish 10
tradition, God inscribes each person's fate for the coming year into a book, the Book of Life, on Rosh Hashanah, and waits until Yom Kippur to "seal" the verdict. During the Days of Awe, a Jew tries to amend his or her behavior and seek forgiveness for wrongs done against God (bein adam leMakom) and against other human beings (bein adam lechavero). The evening and day of Yom Kippur are set aside for public and private petitions and confessions of guilt (Vidui). At the end of Yom Kippur, one considers oneself absolved by God. The Yom Kippur prayer service includes several unique aspects. One is the actual number of prayer services. Unlike a regular day, which has three prayer services (Ma'ariv, the evening prayer; Shacharit, the morning prayer; and Mincha, the afternoon prayer), or a Shabbat or Yom Tov, which have four prayer services (Ma'ariv; Shacharit; Musaf, the additional prayer; and Mincha), Yom Kippur has five prayer services (Ma'ariv; Shacharit; Musaf; Mincha; and Ne'ilah, the closing prayer). The prayer services also include a public confession of sins (Vidui) and a unique prayer dedicated to the special Yom Kippur avodah (service) of the Kohen Gadol in the Holy Temple in Jerusalem. As one of the most culturally significant Jewish holidays, Yom Kippur is observed by many secular Jews who may not observe other holidays. Many secular Jews attend synagogue on Yom Kippur—for many secular Jews the High Holidays are the only recurring times of the year in which they attend synagogue,—causing synagogue attendance to soar—and almost four-fifths fast.
Columbus Day 10/10.2011
Many countries in the New World and elsewhere celebrate the anniversary of Christopher Columbus's arrival in the Americas, which occurred on October 12, 1492, as an official holiday. The event is celebrated as Columbus Day in the United States, as Día de la Raza in many countries in Latin America, as Discovery Day in the Bahamas, as Día de la Hispanidad and Fiesta Nacional in Spain and as Día de las Américas (Day of the Americas) in Uruguay. These holidays have been celebrated unofficially since the late 18th century, and officially in various areas since the early 20th century.
Thanksgiving day (Canada) 10/10/2011
Various First Nations in Canada had long-standing traditions celebrating the harvest and giving thanks for a successful bounty of crops. Canada's First Nations and Native Americans throughout the Americas, including the Pueblo, Cherokee, Cree and many others organized harvest festivals, ceremonial dances, and other celebrations of thanks for centuries before the arrival of Europeans in North America. 12
Canadian troops attend a Thanksgiving service in the bombed-out Cambrai Cathedral, in France in October 1918 The history of Thanksgiving in Canada goes back to an explorer, Martin Frobisher, who had been trying to find a northern passage to the Pacific Ocean. Frobisher's Thanksgiving was not for harvest but homecoming. He had safely returned from a search for the Northwest Passage, avoiding the later fate of Henry Hudson and Sir John Franklin. In the year 1578, he held a formal ceremony in Newfoundland to give thanks for surviving the long journey. The feast was one of the first Thanksgiving celebrations by Europeans in North America. Frobisher was later knighted and had an inlet of the Atlantic Ocean in northern Canada named after him â€” Frobisher Bay. At the same time, French settlers, having crossed the ocean and arrived in Canada with explorer Samuel de Champlain, in 1604 onwards also held huge feasts of thanks. They even formed 'The Order of Good Cheer' and gladly shared their food with their First Nations neighbors. After the Seven Years' War ended in 1763 handing over of New France to the British, the citizens of Halifax held a special day of Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving days were observed beginning in 1799 but did not occur every year. After the American Revolution, American refugees who remained loyal to Great Britain moved from the newly independent United States and came to Canada. They brought the customs and practices of the American Thanksgiving to Canada. Lower Canada and Upper Canada observed Thanksgiving on different dates; for example, in 1816 both celebrated Thanksgiving for the termination of the war between France and Great Britain, the former on 21 May and the latter on 18 June. In 1838, Lower Canada used Thanksgiving to celebrate the end of the Lower Canada Rebellion. Following the rebellions, the two Canada's were merged into a united Province of Canada, which observed Thanksgiving six times from 1850 to 1865. The first Thanksgiving Day after Canadian Confederation was observed as a civic holiday on April 5, 1872 to celebrate the recovery of the Prince of 13
Wales (later King Edward VII) from a serious illnesses. Starting in 1879 Thanksgiving Day was observed every year, but the date was initially a Thursday in November. The date of celebration changed several times until, in 1957, it was officially declared to be the second Monday in October. The theme of the Thanksgiving holiday also changed each year to reflect an important event to be thankful for. In its early years it was for an abundant harvest and occasionally for a special anniversary. After World War I, an amendment to the Armistice Day Act established that Armistice Day and Thanksgiving would both be celebrated on the Monday of the week in which November 11 occurred, starting in 1921. Ten years later, in 1931, the two days became separate holidays, and Armistice Day was renamed Remembrance Day. From 1931 to 1957, the date was set by proclamation, generally falling on the second Monday in October, except for 1935, when it was moved due to a general election. In 1957 Thanksgiving was permanently set to be the second Monday in October.
Halloween (Samhain) 10/31/2011
Also known as: Halloween, Ancestor Night, Feast of the Dead, All Hallows Eve, Hallowmass, Samana, Samhuinn, Samonios, The Feast of Sam-fuim, Geimhreadh, Shadowfest (Strega), Martinmas or Old Hallowmass 14
(Scottish/Celtic) Date: Generally October 31, but some traditions hold it on November 7, or on the first Full Moon in Scorpio Symbols: Cauldron, Jack o'Lantern, Mask, Cauldron, Balefire, Besom Deities: Crone Goddesses, Dying/Aging Gods, Sacrificial Gods, Death and Otherworld Deities Colors: Orange and Black Herbs: heather, mullein, patchouli, and sage my be burned; acorns, apples, pumpkins, oak leaves, straw, broom, dittany, ferns, and flax may be decorations.
Samhain (SOW-in or SAV-ayn) marked the beginning of the old Celtic new year, and many Celtic Pagans still observe Samhain as the renewal of the Wheel of the Year. This was the night that the old God died, returning to the Land of the Dead to await rebirth at Yule, and a time when the Crone Goddess would go into mourning for her lost son/consort, leaving her people in temporary darkness. As in days long past, Celtic Pagans believe that the veil between the world of the living and that of the dead is at its thinnest on this night, and that the spirits of our departed loved ones walk the earth, visit family and friends, and join in the ritual celebrations. This makes Samhain a prime night for any type of spirit contact rituals. The feeding of the dead is a widespread practice, even in modern Celtic 15
lands. In Brittany and Ireland food is always left out for these spirit travelers, and candles are placed in windows to guide them along their way, and these were the origins of the modern Halloween customs of the jack o'lantern and trick-or-treat. Taken from "Celtic Myth and Magick" by Edain McCoy
The following are a few suggestions for activities that can be incorporated into the Sabbat ritual or done during the course of the day (and night).
Drink apple cider warmed and spiced with cinnamon to honor the dead. Make resolutions and burn in a candle flame. This is not the same as ridding yourself of bad habits, but is more like New Year's resolutions, as for many Samhain is the New Year.
Do divinations for the next year.
Make a spirit candle. This is a white candle anointed with patchouli oil. Say:.
With this candle and by its light, I welcome you spirits this Samhain night. Place it inside the jack o'lantern. This may be included in the Ritual, or done separately.
Set out a mute supper. Enjoy the trick or treating of the season.
Awareness For the Month of October
National Australia Bandanna Day
SIDS Awareness Month
Canadian Foundation for the Study of Infant Deaths
Autism Awareness Month
Autism Society Canada
Eye Health Month
Canadian Association of Optometrists
Breast Cancer Canada Awareness Month
Canadian Cancer Society
Breast Cancer United Awareness Kingdom Month
Breast Cancer Care
National Liver United States Awareness Month
American Liver Foundation 18
Celiac Awareness Month
Celiac Sprue Association
Lung Health Day
American Association for Respiratory Care
Healthy Lung Month
American Lung Association
National Orthodontic Health Month
American Association of Orthodontists
National Down United States Syndrome Awareness Month
National Down Syndrome Society
National Spina United States Bifida Awareness Month
Spina Bifida Association
Lupus Awareness Month
Rett Syndrome Awareness Month
International Rett Syndrome Foundation
October 2011 Health Current Events - Weeks Event Date Nation
BackCare Awareness Week
4th Oct - 10th United Oct Kingdom
Mental Illness Awareness Week
5th Oct - 11th United States Oct
National Alliance on Mental Illness
Baby Loss Awareness Week
9th Oct - 15th United Oct Kingdom
Baby Loss Awareness
Haemophilia Awareness Week
12th Oct 18th Oct
Haemophilia Foundation Australia
October 2011 Health Events - Days Event Date Nation
2010 NYC Kidney Walk
National Kidney Foundation
World Mental Health Day
World Federation For Mental Health
National Depression Screening Day
Screening for Mental Health
Metastatic 13th Oct Breast Cancer Awareness Day
World Food Day
World Food Day USA
International Osteoporosis Day
International Osteoporosis Foundation
International Stuttering Awareness Day
British Stammering Association
National Bug Busting Day 3rd of 3
Community Hygiene Concern
How to Make Your Own Charging Box Author: Creepy Hollows
Charging Boxes are used to keep your spelled or spirited vessels at peak energy. You can use practically any material when making a Charging Box and they can be any size you desire. You will want to choose a size that best fits your needs. If you wish to separate your imbued vessels for any reason you can use these same instructions over & over to make as many as are necessary. While Charging Boxes are not a necessity they are a helpful shortcut to more lengthy processes for achieving the same effect. Step 1: Determine Your Needs Before you choose a box to use for this project you need to look at your collection & decide how many boxes you will need. Remember that it is not necessary to keep your spirited or spelled vessels in the box at all times, only when you feel they need a boost of energy, so you can rotate vessels in & out of the box. I would suggest creating one Charging Box at a time and not to attempt to make several at one time. Step 2: Choose a Box
The size & material of the box you choose is up to you however we strongly suggest using a box made of natural material such as gemstone, stone, wood, clay, etc as natural materials are more receptive to the effort. Since practice in the paranormal is a personal endeavor it would be best to choose a box that best expresses you as a person and/or as a 23
collector. The picture here shows you different kinds of containers we have used to make our own Charging Boxes. I placed a penny in the picture so you can see how big the different boxes are. You can choose a Charging Box of any material; metal, glass, ceramic, wood, paper-mache, its up to you. You may want to make a box specifically for one or few vessels or you may want to make a larger one to house more vessels or larger vessels. The Charging Box you choose can be new, vintage, antique or hand-made. You can buy an item to use as a Charging Box and then add your own personal touches to it such as gemstones, ribbons, paint, etc. Step 3: Cleanse Your Container Before you start the process of changing your chosen container into a Charging Box you need to cleanse it of any residual, negative energies. These energies are natural energies that exist all around & attach themselves to everything. They can hinder the process & make the spell you cast less effective which is why we suggest cleansing your workspace before you start. To cast this Cleansing Spell you do not need any candles, wands, incense or any other tool. You simply want to put the container within arm's distance of your body and place your hand above the container before casting the spell. You do not have to be touching the container. It is recommended your hand be about 6-10 inches away from the top of your container.
Spell to use to cleanse the object & prepare it for casting: With the tides of spiritual energy Wash away the plaguing binds Prepare this space for great magic To be received & bound eternally A clean canvas for gifts to be given After you cast the Cleansing spell allow the box to sit for 5-10 minutes before proceeding. Step 4: Cast the Charging Box Spell Now that you have cleansed your chosen container you are ready to proceed to the step of making it a Charging Box. You do not need any wands, candles or tools to do this. Again, have the container within arm's reach & place your hand above approximately 6-10" from the top while reciting. Spell to use to cast a Charging spell on the box: 25
Wash and wear the little deeds do Lighten the spirit and charge the soul Resting, resting, now awaken! Blessings, cleansing's, tide and turn Spawn the energy and let it rise You are refreshed by these words! If you are casting to use the Charging Box for spirited vessels recite it just as written above. If you are casting to use as a Charging Box for spelled/enchanted items change the word "soul" on the second line to "enchantment". If you want to cast to use for both spirits & enchanted vessels then use the words "soul and enchantment". Once you have recited the spell the box is ready to be used as a Charging Box! Depending on your abilities in casting depends entirely on the strength of the magic behind the Charging Box. To help strengthen the spell you just cast you can also leave your new Charging Box in the moonlight over night and allow it to absorb the moon's natural energies. The moon has powerful, rejuvenating energies that will increase the magic of Charging spell. How do I know it worked and what class/strength did I cast it in? The strength of the spell depends on the strength of the caster. If you are completely new then I would say you can expect a class 1 to class 2. An intermediate can expect a class 3 or 4 and class 4 or 5 is an experienced caster. The best & fastest way to see if you achieved your desired result is to place an enchanted object in the charging box and see if its energy is restored and how long it takes to restore. 7-10 days = class 1 5-7 days = class 2 3-5 days = class 3 26
2-3 days = class 4 1-2 days = class 5
Step 5: Using Supportive Items with a Charging Box
There are many natural substances that can be used as lining or as supporting material. These are usually considered offerings to the spirits or spelled vessels you plan to put inside the Charging Box you just made. These are not necessary but not a bad idea either. I will bold the text in the description of substance in the boxes to make it easier to identify. You can use material such as a piece of satin imbued with spells. I do not suggest permanently gluing or affixing the material to the inside of the box because you may wish to change the material. Yours does not have to be spelled but with the 100 Free Spell book on our site you can cast different spells on material for your spirits to enjoy or to help strengthen your enchanted vessels. You can place one or more pieces of spellcast material in your Charging Box of any size. 27
You can use Earthen-made materials such as Sea Glass, a favorite of Dragons & sea entities (Merfolk, Loxy, Poseidon, etc). You can use offerings such as a feather or shells. A feather I use has a spell for sleep on it and I placed it in a Charging Box because the wand that was in with it was spelled for bringing astral visions through peaceful sleep and the feather enhanced the spells. You can also use dried foliage or any other offerings you wish, they don't have to be spelled. Sometimes you may wish to place an offering in the Charging Box with the spirit. An often favorite is natural crystals and some love our casting gems because they are gemstones with bound spells. The crystals emit their natural powers and the casting gems provide both natural & enchanted powers to share with the spirited or spelled vessels you place inside for charging. Charging Boxes do not have to have lids. Open bowls as Charging Boxes make wonderful homes for any of your Spirit Stones as well. Sand is a great offering (especially for Djinn) and, you can use enchanted sand, colored sand (as pictured) or plain sand as an offering. You may also fancy natural, polished gemstones. Gemstones naturally have their own abilities and powers. They can complement and bring wonderful energies to your spirits and enchanted vessels. You can decide whether or not to use natural or enchanted gemstones. Step 6: Charging Box Complete! After finishing these steps & suggestions your Charging Box is complete and ready for use! You can now keep your spelled & spirited vessels at peak energy & your Charging Box never needs re-casting or to be re-charged itself!
Ghostwriter We'll get right to the point: these spooky finger-shaped pens make cool Halloween party favors and are a cinch to make -- even if you're all thumbs.
Materials Disposable ballpoint pen White Crayola Model Magic modeling material Toothpick Craft glue Plastic fingernail Nail polish Instructions 1. For each one, cover a disposable ballpoint pen (cap removed) with a 1/4-inch layer of white Crayola Model Magic modeling material, leaving the tip of the pen exposed. 2. Sculpt the clay into a finger shape, forming thick bumps on one side for knuckles. Mark wrinkles and creases around the knuckles with a toothpick. 3. Next, use craft glue to attach a plastic fingernail near the pen's tip, leaving room enough for the pen to write. (If you like, trim the nail with scissors beforehand for a jagged effect.) Use the toothpick to create lines around the cuticle area and coat the nail with nail polish 29
in a frightful hue. 4. Allow the clay and the polish to dry completely before using the pen.
Trick-or-treaters can step into a silly cemetery--a not-so-grave site-- made of these cardboard gravestones.
Materials Cardboard Scissors Gray paint Markers Garden Stake Duct Tape Instructions 1. Cut the stones out of cardboard, paint them gray, then inscribe with silly epitaphs, such as Scared E. Cat or Hal O. Ween. 2. The night of the party, use duct tape to attach a garden stake to the back of each tombstone and stake them all in the front yard, tipping some at odd angles for that 17th-century look. 3. Partially bury a hat or boots in the front of each stone so it looks as if the deceased may rise to the occasion. 30
Foaming Vanilla Honey Bath
Banish the winter blahs and dissolve away the harshness of the day by relaxing in a soothing bath. Honey is nature's silky moisturizer and guaranteed to sweeten your mood! Foaming Vanilla Honey Bath Recipe * 1 cup sweet almond oil, light olive or sesame oil may be substituted * 1/2 cup honey * 1/2 cup liquid soap * 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract Directions: Measure the oil into a medium bowl, then carefully stir in remaining ingredients until mixture is fully blended. Pour into a clean plastic bottle with a tight-fitting stopper or lid. Shake gently before using. Make enough for four large luxurious baths. Swirl desired amount into the bathtub under running water - then step in and descend into a warm, silky escape. 31
Special Notes: This is the Time of the Thin Veil or communion with the dead, the ruling time of the Crone aspect of the Goddess. Altar Supplies: incense; burner; chalice of water; salt; pentacle; dagger or sword; wand; 4 Element candles; cauldron; chalice of wine; plate of bread and salt; You will need extra candles (one white, one red, two black, one yellow, and one green) and holders for them. Arrange the white, red and black candles on the left side of the altar and the green, black, and yellow candles on the right side.
With casting the circle as your basic starting point, perform the same ritual illustrated in the 'Sample Ritual', inserting the following steps where the Sample states "proceed with you planned spellwork or ceremony". Turn to the three candles on the left side of the altar, saying: I light three candles for the Triple Goddess... the Great Lady of Three Aspects 32
(light the white candle)Glorious Maiden, Goddess of youth and new beginnings, Dawn and the planted seed. (light the red candle) Great Mother, Goddess of magic and plenty, Love and knowledge. (light the black) Dark Crone, wise Goddess of the night, death and rebirth. I welcome the Goddess in all her forms. Turn to the three candles on the right of the altar, saying: I light three candles for the Triple God ...Great Lord of many faces (light the yellow candle)Bright Sun King, God of success and plenty. (light the green candle)Horned God of the Woodlands God of fertility and growth. (light the black candle) Dark Lord of the Underworld God of protection and rest. I welcome the God in all his forms. Raise your arms over the altar and say: This night is the Feast of the Dead, the night of the wheel-turning year that brings us to the Thin Veil. The gates between the worlds stand open this night. I honor my ancestors whose voices come to me on the whispering wind. All those who wish me well are welcomed within this circle. Place the plate of bread and salt on the pentacle. Say: This is Ancestor Night, the night strongest for communication with those gone into Emania, those who now dwell in the presence of the Old Gods. 33
The Veil has been lifted that I may know I am not forgotten. All those who wish me well are welcomed within this circle. Lift the plate of bread and salt up over the altar. Say: I ask all who have gathered here to join me in this feast. Dip a piece of the bread into the salt and eat it. Say: May I always have good health, prosperity and happiness Set the plate aside and put the wine chalice on the pentacle for a moment. Take up the cup of wine and say: May I always be strong in body, mind and spirit. To the Old Gods! Merry meet, merry part and merry meet again! Drink some of the wine. Save some of the wine, bread and salt to be placed outside later for the "little people". Replace the chalice on the altar Turn back to the Goddess Candles, Say: The year wheel has turned, the harvest has come again. I have sown many thoughtseeds since last Samhain. Let the good be harvested; let those that would hinder or harm me be cast aside. The Triple Goddess has covered me with her gentle hands, guided my steps, heard my desires. For this I give her honor and love. Turn to the God candles. Say: The year wheel has turned, the harvest has come again. Once more I stand before the Thin Veil Before the gates that divide the worlds. The Triple God has protected me 34
With his sword, guided my steps, heard my desires For this I give him honor and love. Stand in silence while you ask what you need of the Gods. Also listen for spirit guidance that may come from those in Emania. When finished, say: All love and honor to the Great Lady and her Lord. Blessed Be
Solitary Black Mass Many of us do not have a group to work with due to living situations, and location. The Order of the Four Horsemen feel that each member should be included in special events, and have the right to the rituals of the Church of the fallen This right is for the Solitary Practitioner. It can be used for workings of magick, or just celebrating major rites of the Luciferian faith. Preparation: Some Practitioners have a room that they can dedicate as a Temple, or just a small piece of their apartment. Either way it is important that you take the time to worship. Here are some supplies that you will need in order to get started. 1.An Alter. This can be a small coffee table or one that it made. The size and dimensions are up to you. 2.An alter cloth. This cloth should be black, and can be made from any fabric you wish. 3.A bell or gong 4.Candles for illumination, these candles should be black. 5.One black and one white candle for the alter, the white candle is used for casting spells of 35
destruction, and the black candle is used for spells of blessing 6.An incense burner and a good supply of incense. 7.A chalice, of any type, and wine 8.A pitcher holding water, which symbolizes the waters of life. 9.A Bowl and an aspergian. 10.A Patent, holding the wafer and black bread 11.A black cloth which covers the Patent The Practitioner sets up his or her Alter, and makes sure that all materials are present for the ritual about to begin. All candles and incense are lit, and wine is poured into the chalice. The lights are turned out and the Practitioner makes sure that there will be no disturbances during the ritual. This may including making sure no one comes over, or the phone is unplugged, and cell phones are turned off. It is very important that each Practitioner take a few moments in quiet contemplation. This is the stage where each Practitioner thinks about the reasons for holding the mass, and how they hope Lucifer will change their lives. If you are going to perform a magickal act you must be sure you are ready for the outcome, no matter what it will be, and that you are ready to suffer the consequences if your magick is not just. Approach the Alter and make the sign of the inverted Cross, while saying: In the name of Lucifer, his Daemons, and Legions Now trace an inverted pentagram before you, while saying: May the Blessings of Darkness be with me this night/day. Stand with your arms out in front of you with your palms down toward the Alter, with bowed head, and say: In the Name of Lucifer I will go to the altar of the Infernal Lord. To Him who gives me joy. My help is the Name of the Infernal Lord. Who reigns on Earth. Before the mighty and ineffable Prince of Darkness, and his Daemons and Legions, who dwell in the fires of Perdition, who fought the first battle of heaven for our sake and the sake of freedom. I acknowledge and confess my past error, Renouncing all past allegiances to He Who Is Three, and his Angelica, I proclaim that Satan-Lucifer rules the Earth, and I ratify and renew my promise to recognize and honor Him in all things, without reservation, desiring in return His manifold assistance in the successful completion of my endeavors and the fulfillment of my desires. Keep me, 36
Lord Lucifer, from the hands of the wicked, and from unjust men deliver me. Lord Lucifer, Thou shalt rise again & quicken me. and I shall rejoice in Thee. Show me Thy power, and grant me Thy bounty. Hear me, and let my cry come unto Thee. Make the sign of the inverse cross. Glory to Lucifer the Infernal Lord, & on earth life & strength to man. I praise Thee, I bless Thee, I adore Thee, I glorify Thee, I give thanks to Thee for Thy great power; Lord Lucifer, Infernal King, Almighty Emperor. Make the sign of the inverse cross. Offertory The chalice & paten, upon which rests the wafer, are uncovered. Take the paten in both hands & raise it breast-high in an attitude of offering, then speak the following words: Lord Lucifer, receive this host which I, Thy worthy servant, offer to Thee, my True and Living God, that it may avail for my rejoicing in this life. So be it. Replacing the paten and the wafer raise the chalice in like manner, saying: Lord Lucifer, I offer to Thee the chalice of Desire, that it may arise in the sight of Thy majesty for my use & gratification & be pleasing unto Thee. So be it. Replace the chalice upon the altar, then extend your hands, the palms downwards, and say: Come Lucifer, Emperor of the World that I may profit by this sacrifice. Take the incense burner and sprinkle incense onto the burning coals, while saying: May this incense rise before Thee, Infernal Lord, & may Thy blessing descend upon me. Take the incense burner & cense the altar & gifts. First cense the chalice & wafer with three swings widdershins and bow. Then raise the censer three times towards the Image of Satan, bow again. Lastly cense the top & sides of the altar three times, by circumambulation if the appointments of the temple be convenient. Replace the Incense burner upon the Alter, and say: I lift up my heart to thee, Lucifer my Infernal Lord and give thanks, at all times & in all places I give Thee thanks: Lord, Infernal King, Emperor of the World, Jubilantly all the infernal's praise Thee, & with them I join my own voice, saying: Salve, Salve, Salve. Strike the gong or ring the bell three times. Lord Lucifer, God of Power, Earth & Infernos are full of Thy glory. Hosanna in the depths. Make the sign of the Inverted Cross. Cannon Therefore Lord Lucifer, I entreat that you receive and accept this Sacrifice, which I offer. You have set your mark upon me, that you may make me proper in 37
fullness and length of life, under thy protection, may cause the inhabitants of The Fires of Perdition to go forth and give me their blessings and strength in the fulfillment of my desires, and the destruction of my enemies. In concert this day/night I ask Thy unfailing assistance in this particular need. At this point in the ritual, the specific purpose is mentioned for holding the Mass, or Magickal acts are preformed. In the unity of unholy fellowship I praise and honor first Thee, Lucifer, Morning Star, Teacher of Philosophies, Beelzebub, Bringer of Peace, and Lord of Regeneration, and Baal, Ruler of the Physical, Shield of the Faithful; Abaddon, Knower of theories, and bringer of arcane knowledge, and Asmodeus, Seer of integration, Lord of Creativity. I call upon the nameless and formless ones, the mighty innumerable hosts of Hell, by whose assistance I may be strengthened in mind, Body, and Will. I therefore beseech Thee, Lord Lucifer, to accept this offering of my bounden duty as also of Thine whole household; order my days in joy & count me within the fold of Thine elect. Shamhemforash! Take the pitcher from the alter, and pure the water into the bowl while saying: After the one who called himself God put his mark upon the flesh of Cain, Cain wandered through the desert of Nodd. As Cain approached death from the desert heat, he said, â€œIt is better I die then to live a life void of dreams and hope and knowing, far better, for the bitter God of my father to have spared His wretched mercy.â€? And with these words, the ground parted. And water sprang thereof. And Cain partook of its sweetness. And the mystical water filled and expanded his shriveled flesh. Now dip the aspergeant into the bowl, turn to each compass pint, shaking the aspergeant thrice at each point saying: (Facing South) In the name of Lucifer, I bless thee with the waters of life (Facing East) In the name of Lucifer, I bless thee with the waters of life. (Facing North) In the name of Lucifer, I bless thee with the waters of life. (Facing West) In the name of Lucifer, I bless thee with the waters of Life. Replace bowl, pitcher, and aspergean upon alter. The Consecration Take the wafer into your hand, bending low over it, whisper the following words into it. Here is the body of Jesus Christ. Raise the wafer before the image of Lucifer. Replace the wafer on the patent, which rests on the Alter. Take the Chalice into your hands and bend low 38
over it; as with the wafer, whisper the following words into it. Here is the Chalice of Desire. Raises the Chalice above your head before the image of Satan. The Chalice is then replaced, The gong is struck or the bell is rung, and the following is recited. To me, thy faithful child, O Infernal Lord, who glory in my iniquity and trust in your boundless power and might, grant that I may be numbered among Thy chosen. It is ever through you that all gifts come to me; knowledge, power, freedom, and wealth are yours to bestow. Renouncing the false spiritual rewards that are offered by He Who Is Three, the one who calls himself God, I place my trust in Thee, the Lord of this world, and teacher of Philosophies, looking to the satisfaction of all of my desires, and the petitioning all fulfillment in the land of the living. Shemhemforash! The following prayer can be used at this point, or the Prayer of the Light Bringer, which can be found in the Book of Power in John De Vitoâ€™s The Devils Apocrypha. Prompted by the precepts of the earth and the inclinations of desire, I am bold to say; Our Father who art in Hell, hallowed be Thy name. Thy Kingdom is come, Thy will is done; on earth as it is in Hell! I take the day/night my rightful due, and trespass not on paths of pain. Lead me unto temptation, and deliver me from false piety, for Thine is the Kingdom and the Power and the Glory for ever! Let reason and freedom rule the earth! Deliver me, O Mighty Lucifer, from all past error and delusion, that, having set my feet upon the path of Darkness and having vowed myself to Thy Service, I may not weaken in my resolve, but with Thy assistance, grow in wisdom and strength. The Repudiation and the Denunciation Take the wafer into your hands, extend it before you, and say the following: Behold the body of Jesus Christ, Lord of the humble & King of the slaves. Now hold the wafer up before the image of Lucifer, while saying: I invoke thee into this wafer. You who came to earth to enslave the race of man. You were sent by He Who Is Three, to strengthen the chains of bondage. You were sent to increase faith which feeds the one who calls himself God, and the host of the heavens. I invoke you in order to brake the chains of bondage and kindle the fires of freedom. I will push the crown of thorns deep into your head, and drive the nails deeper into your hands, which hold you upon the cross, I shall once again pierce your side and show all 39
that you are nothing, but the true father of lies, and your words and deeds are false. You would have men and women live their lives in poverty, just so they can give more faith. Yes, you have gained many followers and sheep for your fold, but now the tide is turning and your flock is learning the truth. In the name of Lucifer, his Daemons, and Legions. I condemn thee to the abyss, and free the souls of all you have taken. Raise the wafer, dash it to the ground, and crush it under foot. Strike the gong or ring the bell nine times. Then take up the Chalice into your hands, and before drinking say: Behold the Chalice of Desire which gives joy and meaning to my life. I Accept the Chalice of Desire in the name of our Infernal Lord. Drink from the Chalice, and when the Chalice is empty, make the sign of the Inverted Cross, and replace the Chalice upon the Alter. Place the patent on top of the Chalice, and cover it with the veil. Say the following: I have received the Blessings of our Lord Lucifer, may his protection and grace be with me in all of my endeavors. My rite is at an end, and I shall go forth into the world spreading the word of our Infernal Lord to all who care to listen. I shall stand tall and bring comfort to the faithful when needed. For the end time are nearly upon us. I will stand with the faithful and fight. Our freedom is at hand. Make the sign of the Inverted Cross, and trace the Inverted Pentagram before you and say: Hail Lucifer! Make sure that you extinguish all candles. Some practitioners will have a small snack to help them ground after the ritual.
Tai Chi Explained By BjĂ¸rn Darboe Nissen
More and more people practice the gracious art of Tai Chi Chuan in parks, gardens and indoors. Tai Chi Chuan is a sofisticated training combining self-defense, meditation and energy-medicine. Regular training activates ones selfhealing forces, strengthens the immune defence thus acting as preventive medicine. Itâ€™s an early and sparkling summer morning and quiet amongst the trees in the park. The sunlight glitters on the lake and is reflected in the green leaves on the trees. In an corner under a huge oak two persons are moving slowly and synchronous, gracious and vigorous. Even though other morning joggers passes by, the two under the oak doesnâ€™t seem to pay any attention to anything but their own movements - carried out with a relaxed concentration. They practice Tai Chi Chuan.
But what is this all about then? To us westerners Tai Chi Chuan (in the West often just called Tai Chi) looks like some rather slow, exotic and graceful movement. How can these exercises stimulate any healing process for the individual? And how can these soft, round and circular movements function as a martial art at all? Well, Tai Chi is really a synthesis of martial art, a kind of walking yoga, healing and meditation. In its supreme expression, Tai Chi turns into a way of reaching enlightenment. Thus it becomes a spiritual body culture. Tai Chi is an art which 43
cultivates and promotes both physical, emotional and mental development. As it melts together certain specified principles of body movement with esoteric knowledge about the energy structure of the human body, Tai Chi is on the mark with Yoga from India and Eurythmy from Europe. The inner background of Tai Chi Today, we’re all acquainted with the phenomenon of Acupuncture. The healing art where thin, fine needles are introduced into the body through certain points on the skin, thus adjusting an unbalance, which may have already manifested itself as an illness. These so-called acupuncture-points are placed like pearls on a string on certain Meridians, which have been mapped in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). These meridians mainly run in through all fingers and toes - deep into the inner organs. The human body is connected with its etheric body via these meridians - actually you could regard the meridians as the “lower” part of the etheric body. The science of the spirit (Theosophy, Antroposophy etc.) has always been aware of this aspect of the human being. The existence of the etheric body may also be recognized by the current scientific mind, maybe through a further investigation into the famous Kirlian-photographs. Tai Chi Chuan is a martial art. The movements in Tai Chi Chuan have been constructed around the knowledge about the meridians, which TCM has accumulated. The movements are done following certain principles, which contain the core of Tai Chi Chuan. If you train along 44
these guidelines, it’s possible to slowly open up the flow of Qi in the meridians. This will gradually make energy flow from higher bodies into the physical body. Through this alchemical process, the physical body is refined - it’s energetic level is lifted. The meridians are usually blocked to some degree in most people. Ten years on a school bench - and the body, especially the back, is rather inhibited. The human body is very sensitive and beautiful - to a degree we normally do not take into consideration. Or to put it differently: we can expand our awareness into physical, emotional, mental and spiritual areas, which are normally completely unknown to our common, daily consciousness. In fact we’re some completely incomprehensible, shining creatures - present in a mysterious world. The mysteries in our selves and in the world are only to be discovered on the premise of the mysteries themselves - they are so much bigger than us. All meditation, all true science, any kind of grail-quest, comprehension, aims at an amplification and expansion of our consciousness, purification of our bodies and strengthening the sensitivity of our awareness. This alternated state of mind can give us a personal experience and recognition of the spiritual nature of the universe, that created us. This consciousness will, when correctly understood, also permit a living use of the gained knowledge. Practicing Tai Chi Chuan endows you with a wonderful openness from where you can chose to act or not act from greater awareness. You have a broader scope in any situation - socially and personally. A state, where you are better equipped to say yes or no - because you see more clearly what the heck is going on, here and now. The more or less hidden manipulations and motives of the surroundings are unveiled, and thus your own moves become much more qualified. You gain a stillness inside, which enables you to “do the right thing” better.
In China Tai Chi Chuan is also described as Shadowboxing. During practise you fight your own shadow, your health unbalances, physical, emotional and mentally. At the same time your potentials unfold naturally. This art aims at turning you into A Shadowless Boxer. This takes a long time! As the training opens up the meridians and you begin to experience more energy and a new well-being on all levels, further horizons open up. In the beginning you may not understand it - thatâ€™s only natural. You have to count on a daily practise for three years (at least), before you can count on a solid and firm foundation for your retrieved baby-body - and then the real training starts. At this point, itâ€™s necessary for most of us, to have the guidance of a true Tai Chi Chuan-master. One thing he will tell you for sure: Endurance is one of the keys, that opens the door. Perhaps the most important. The opening of the meridians is as mentioned followed by a pouring in of energy from the higher, energetically speaking more potent bodies; the blood, the nervous-system, the glandular system and the bone-marrow are strengthened. In this way we can talk about 46
healing the whole human body. The meridians are also bearers of consciousness of different characters - and this is really one of the thrills of doing Tai Chi Chuan. The training will develop it in you - no leaned-back sofa-philosophy is of any use here, of course. It is, though, rather easy to gain a very good strengthening result with Tai Chi Chuan in a year. Tests have shown, that the immune-systems of Tai Chi-players are considerably stronger than the average. This art thus strengthens the etheric body, the inner organs, the Will - in fact all inner life. We can consider Tai Chi Chuan both as a healing art and as preventive medicine. You could say itâ€™s preventive in contrast to the medicine of the western world today, which actually is solely curative - and used, when illness has already occurred. Thatâ€™s like digging wells, when the drought is already ravaging. Isnâ€™t this a bit too late? After practicing correctly for one year, the beginner will start to sense a warm flow of energy all the way out into the fingertips. The soft turning of the waist massages the inner organs, thus improving their state and functioning. With advanced students, the breath will sink down into the abdomen and the whole body will become relaxed. After practise you have gained new energy and are paradoxically not exhausted. This is due to the character of this method - the connection it establishes between the different human energy-bodies, combined with the relaxation of the physical body. Serious training is the mean, recumbent sofa philosophizing is futile. It is, though, relatively ease on the health level to gain a good result within a year of training. 47
Tai Chi to the very end After practicing correctly for one year, the beginner will start to sense a warm flow of energy all the way out into the fingertips. The soft turning of the waist massages the inner organs, thus improving their state and functioning. With advanced students, the breath will sink down into the abdomen and the whole body will become relaxed. After practise you have gained new energy and are paradoxically not exhausted. This is due to the character of this method - the connection it establishes between the different human energy-bodies, combined with the relaxation of the physical body. The access to a broader and clearer consciousness is also remarkable. You gain insight without reading thick, dusty books - and with daily practise, the body is kept young and healthy, even when you’re well on in years. This is the reason, why Tai Chi always has been said to be “The Way of Rejuvenation”. The energy you can open up to after a couple of years work, is very inspiring. Actually, you can keep on developing through Tai Chi Chuan up until the very moment you leave this world. There is a very beautiful history about the elderly Tai Chi Chuan Master Yang-Chian (1839-1917). He obtained harmony between firmness and softness on a very high level. It is said he could fixate a bird in his open palm, so it could not fly away. When the bird tried to sink down to fly, he let his palm yield, so it could not prepare it’s escape. It is said, that when Yang-Chian dreamt his death a few hours before it came, he had his family and friends come to say goodbye. He took a bath, changed to a new set of clothes, lied down on his bed - and passed on with a smile....
The meditation of Sealâ€™s & Sigils By: Andrew First I would like to explain that there is a difference between the 2 & how you go about working with each. The best way to explain it is, that when working w/ seals we are working with a specific entity & one that we will be using for a purpose or an act, where as a sigil we are creating an entity or using it to open a part of the mind to obtain knowledge such as the sigil for Jupiter we would use the sigil to open our minds to the energy & influence there of, where as we would use the planetary seal to invoke the entity of it and therefore command it to do our biding, sigils have many functions & purposes where as seals are pretty much self defined & governed by there stature, such as those found in The Lesser Keys of Solomon, or Angelic seals. I know this sounds very complex, but it actually 50
fairly simple once you understand, seal we do not charge in a since, where as a sigil we create & charge it to bring it into manifestation such as to remind us of a phrase or a name, we see the sigil & it then triggers w/in our mind what it is, where a seal does not it will invoke the entity into manifestation, & may not be what we wont at the time. I will cover more on this in greater depth later dealing with each individually, just wont to bring this up now before we getting into the meditation of each, so that it is known that they are different. The meditation of seal’s I will be using one that I have tattooed on my chest, from the lesser keys of Solomon. The seal of Astaroth ·
First in this process we look at the seal & then take a fresh sheet of paper & start to draw it out, we continue to do this till we can do it w/out looking at it & do it from memory, then we will take it on step further & make our own seal, by using a consecrated parchment & thus draw it a pawn it, then cut it out & I use lamented to keep it in good & perfect condition, from there comes the meditation part. This may take some anywhere from a few days or weeks to accomplish. I can do it now in one setting but that came with years of practice. So once this is all done now you need to meditate on it, by first finding your asana (meditation posture) whatever is the most comfortable to you, once you are fully relaxed & find the perfect gnosis (trance/state of mind) you proceed by staring at the seal w/out blinking, do this for at least 51
30mins but do not let the image disappear or go black, you want this to stay as it is unlike other visual meditation where you stare at the image till it goes black & there is no longer an image there. You will repeat this process till you can see the sealâ€™s energy & you will feel that it is already imprinted in your mind, or you will see the entity manifest itself before you, so depending what you are using this one for a circle may be needed till you feel you have complete control over it, & there is respect between you, for general purposes we will say we are using this to open a faculty in our mind, (29.) ASTAROTH. - The Twenty-ninth Spirit is Astaroth. He is a Mighty, Strong Duke, and appeareth in the Form of an hurtful Angel riding on an Infernal Beast like a Dragon, and carrying in his right hand a Viper. Thou must in no wise let him approach too near unto thee, lest he do thee damage by his Noisome Breath. Wherefore the Magician must hold the Magical Ring near his face, and that will defend him. He giveth true answers of things Past, Present, and to Come, and can discover all Secrets. He will declare wittingly how the Spirits fell, if desired, and the reason of his own fall. He can make men wonderfully knowing in all Liberal Sciences. He ruleth 40 Legions of Spirits. His Seal is this, which wear thou as a Lamen before thee, or else he will not appear nor yet obey thee, etc. We would be opening the faculty that lets us see the answers of past, present, & future & the liberal sciences, anything else I would recommend using a circle till you have established a good connection between you, & always remember that it is SUBJECTED TO YOU, you command it & it most obey. Once this process is complete all you have to do is recall the seal & it will trigger or project it on the subject. 52
The meditation of sigils For this process we would either create a sigil or use one that is already known to us such as planetary sigils which I will be using Jupiter for the example here, for there are many ways to create sigils from using alphabets to automatic drawing & creating an image from that from which we would charge by meditating on it till the image disappeared or by simply drawing it out & on paper & folding it up so it can be seen & taping it into our book of shadows or somewhere & forgetting about till it is time for it to take effect & then we will feel a need to open it & the effect will take place.
路 We would draw this out on a fresh sheet of consecrated paper & as stated above, except this time we want the image to go black & disappear, we would repeat this process till we can see it w/out the sigil being there, once this is done the sigil is now charged & ready for use, & becomes a magical tool & needs to be treated as such. Sigil & seals are one of the many ways to unlock the doors within our minds & open up knowledge that will help us grow spiritually, & further our magic, they have many uses feel free to explore them all, you will find it a wonderful addition to your own work & also find it to be relaxing as well.
Pagan Sensuality Rending the Veil of the Physical and Spiritual by: Rev. Mel J. Fleming II, PhD Pheonyx Circle of Sacred Sexuality of California
Samhain is classically the period where we concentrate on â€œrendering the Veilâ€? of the physical and spiritual atmospheres. It is the time when they come close and cross over. This article is along those lines, although think od it as rendering the veils of the physical, spiritual and sensual sides we all possess, and yet for some strange reason, keep separate. Are these aspects of life not the gifts of the Deities? Were they meant to be kept separate? If not, then why are they still? Does this in our modern day and age make sense, to a thinking Pagan? In my opinion, no is the appropriate answer. As Pagans, who endeavour to follow the example of the ancients, we have to reinvest toward integrating that which is the spiritual, with the physical. The two simply 55
cannot be separate. i believe imbalance results, thereof. People might ask what I’m getting at here. Well, historically many of our Pagan ritual have sensual aspects to them,. The Great Rite, the Chalice and the Blade, Litha, Fertility Spells, and many other examples abound. The ancient Priestess and Princess Edhuahnna, who worshiped Inanna, extolled her sexual virtues in her poetry: here is one example of a description about Inanna: “The description of Inanna includes many of her aspects, but all the roles that Jacobsen discusses are ones that attach a woman to males by means of the patriarchal family and so control her sexuality and ability to reproduce. Feminist scholar Tikva Frymer-Kensky understands Inanna differently: Inanna was the divine model for a role that was not considered socially desirable. "She represents the non-domesticated woman, and she exemplifies all the fear and attraction that such a woman elicits" (1992: 25). She is a woman who is not tied to the patriarchal family, whose sexuality is not controlled for its ends. In addition, Inanna is the fearsome spirit of "the attraction necessary for all sexual copulation, regardless of its social purpose or value." Nonetheless, despite being the goddess of prostitutes, Inanna was, as goddess Ishara, also "patron of marital sexuality" (47-48). (Thorkild Jacobsen) (http://www.matrifocus.com/SAM04/spotlight.htm) Let’s see another example: Dionysos (Bacchus) - the god of wine, mysteries, and the theater He invented wine and spread the art of tending grapes. He has a dual nature. On the one hand bringing joy and divine ecstasy. On the other brutal, unthinking, rage. Thus, reflecting both sides of wines nature. If he choses Dionysus can drive a man mad. No normal fetters can hold him or his followers. He was accompanied by the Maenads, wild women, carrying rods tipped with pine cones. While other gods had temples the followers of Dionysus worshipped him in the woods. Here they might go into mad states where they 56
would rip apart and eat raw any animal they came upon. Dionysus is also one of the very few that was able to bring a dead person(his mother) out of the underworld. The festival for Dionysus is in the spring when the leaves begin to riper on the vine. It became one of the most important events of the year. It's focus became the theater. Most of the great Greek plays were initially written to be performed at the feast of Dionysus. All who took part writers, actors, spectators were regarded as scared servants of Dionysus Áine (Irish pronunciation: [·a·n··]) is an Irish goddess of love, summer, wealth and sovereignty. She is associated with the sun and midsummer, and is sometimes represented by a red mare. She is the daughter of Egobail, the sister of Aillen and/or Fennen, and is claimed as an ancestor by multiple Irish clans. Áine is strongly associated with County Limerick. The hill of Knockainy (Cnoc Áine) is named for her, and was site of rites in her honour, involving fire and the blessing of the land, recorded as recently as 1879. She is also associated with sites such as Tobar Áine in County Tyrone, Dun Áine (Dunany) County Louth, Lios Áine/ Cnoc Áine County Londonderry, Cnoc Áine near Teelin, County Donegal. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aine There’s a list of Goddesses and Gods associated with spiritual areas of love, sex, sensuality in their rituals, and festivals: (http://www.lowchensaustralia.com/names/godslove.htm) What about the Great Rite?In some (although not all) traditions of Wicca and Paganism, sacred sex is part of spiritual practice. Wicca in its original form is a fertility religion, first and foremost, so it's understandable that at some point you may encounter some references to sexual acts, whether 57
they be actual or implied. By implied, we mean the symbolic -- the joining of an athame with a chalice, for example. The most commonly referenced form of ritual sex is the Great Rite, which is the ritualized connection of the god and goddess. Author Vivianne Crowley says, "The outer rite involves a linking of the male and the femaleâ€¦ the sacred marriage is outwardly a marriage of two people, but inwardly it is a marriage of the two within one person." The Great Rite is more than just sexual union; it is the enactment of the creation of the universe (http://paganwiccan.about.com/od/magicandspellwork/f/WhatIsRitualSex. htm) My question to my brother/sister Pagans is why have we not explored this area more deeply? Why have we chosen to neglect this not only vital, but healthy option of spirituality? Now this is not to say, I espouse, or support wild, mindless sexual orgies, or irresponsible behaviours. But this is a very normal part of our human bodies, and gifts from the Deities. you cannot logically deny this, unless there are obviously issues of body acceptance, religious background abuse, lack of education, or the misled belief that self denial is some kind of virtue. There are books on this topic I recommend: Sexy Witch by Lasara Firefox, Modern Sex Magick, Donald Michael Kraig, Sexual Sorcery, Jason Newcomb, The Art of Sexual Magick, Margo Anand, Sexual Secrets of Quabbalah, Stuart Berlin, M.D. Love Spells, Stella Damiana, and The Tarot and the Mysteries of Love and Sex, Oestara Publishing. Rendering the Veil of the physical, and spiritual realms will increase your spiritual self Rev. Mel J. Fleming II, PhD is organizer of the California group, The Pheonyx Circle of Sacred Sexuality. They study, celebrate the consciousness of the human body, as related to spiritually oriented sexuality, and sensuality. http://www.meetup.com/pheonyx-sacred-sex-and-pagan-rite 58
Dr. Fleming II, is also author of; “The Tarot and the Mysteries of Love and Sex”, published by Oestara Publishing House. http://www.oestarapublishing.com/EroticaTarot.html
The Healing Power of Trees Author: Joe H. Slate PHD Retrieved from Llewellyn Journal http://www.llewellyn.com/journal/article/748
Have you ever marveled at the power and beauty of trees? As earth’s oldest and largest living things, they are the planet’s natural antennae to the universe. By their very presence, they command our attention and invite our interaction. Like a trusted friend, a special tree can be a source of comfort and inspiration. Since the tree is the biggest plant on earth and because it is so 59
permanent, it is a unique manifestation of life on a very massive scale. Symbolically, trees represent the loftiest planes of the universe. It is not surprising then that trees throughout history have been focal points that marked human progress and introduced events that shaped the future. For instance, it was under the Akenwyke Yew in Runnymede, England, that King John signed the Magna Carta in 1215. It was under the Cambridge Elm in Massachusetts in 1775 that George Washington took command of the Continental Army. It was under the Masonic Charter Oak that Texas declared its independence in 1836. We remember these ancient trees today as memorials to progress and symbols of freedom. Aside from national affairs, the regal tree can be a focal point that empowers our personal lives mentally, physically, and spiritually. The tree, in fact, seems designed to parallel our own physical makeup. It is a smoothly operating system that never stops growing. Consequently, this magnificent antenna to the universe provides the ideal channel for interacting with higher planes of power. Iâ€™ve always been a tree person. As a child growing up on a farm in the Deep South, I walked each morning down a lane lined with great old oak trees to catch a bus for school. Hiking in the forest, often with my parents and two brothers was a favorite year-round activity, especially on weekends. My father, also a tree person, believed that we share with trees a wondrous destiny for growth and greatness. The primeval forest especiallyâ€”with its abundance of giant trees, lush undergrowth, and verdant floorâ€”offers a unique convergence of the highest energies of nature. Every inch of the forest is a celebration of life. The sounds of life and renewal reverberate throughout it like an anthem under its vaulting canopy of leaves. By simply walking through it, you can draw from its rich repository of energy to empower the mind, body, and spirit. I discovered early in life that certain old trees can call out to us, inviting us to engage their energies and share their powers. During walks in the forest as a child with my brothers, we often placed our hands on a giant 60
tree to experience its unique energies. It once occurred to me as my hands rested on a towering oak that I may have existed as a tree in a past life. Perhaps it was important to my growth to know what it was like to be embodied in a tree—if not for a full lifetime, for at least a brief interval between past lifetimes. Or if not as a tree, possibly as some other non-human life form. It seemed reasonable to me, for instance, that a past life as an animal being could explain my present-life appreciation of animals as beings of great dignity and worth. All too often, we fail to recognize animals as divine beings worthy of our respect and admiration. My grandfather, a veterinarian who devoted his life to the care of sick or injured animals, believed that the best measure of how far we have developed as human beings rests in the nature of our treatment of animals. For me personally, the quality of my existence beyond death would be immeasurably enriched by the afterlife presence of animals in a spiritual forest habitat. Could it really be heaven without our animal friends? Phoenix, the Beech Tree I will never forget a certain old beech tree my brothers and I discovered as children on a summer afternoon hike into the dense forest near our home. Instantly, I felt connected to the tree and its powerful energies. Towering above all the others, the massive beech, which I named Phoenix, stood firmly anchored by roots wrapped around a giant limestone rock with a crevasse from which sprang an abundant flow of crystal clear water. Known as “Old Split-rock,” the spring was “everlasting”—it had never been known to go dry, even during the most severe of droughts that were common to the 61
region. I remember the first time I rested my hands upon the giant tree. I at once experienced a powerful infusion of positive energy followed by a serene state of oneness with the tree, not as an inanimate object, but as a living being. Although I was only around ten years of age, I felt totally connected to the highest plans of power in the universe. That interaction with Phoenix was a peak experience I would never forget. It awakened within me a deep awareness of the illimitable power of our natural surroundings and our ability to experience it first hand. In the shade of Phoenix was a large, flat limestone rock that became a favorite place for our family outings. It was there on Flat Rock, as we called it, that our parents would often spread lunch and, on lazy summer afternoons, read to us selections from the great works of literature. Occasionally, they would suggest a passage for us to commit to memory. A favorite passage that remains firmly etched in my mind to this day came from Robert Collier’s seven-volume set titled The Secret of Ages: “Start today by knowing that you can do anything you wish to do, have anything you wish to have, be anything you wish to be. The rest will follow.” (Collier, Robert. The Secret of Ages, Volume 2, Robert Collier Publisher, New York, 1926, p. 131). At the end of each outing, we would place our hands upon Phoenix to experience anew his remarkable power. At age 12, I experienced that power at a critical time in my life when I was diagnosed with congenital heart disease involving a malfunctioning valve. When I asked the doctor, “How long do I have?” he replied, “You may live for a long time.” When I asked more pointedly, “How long is a long time?” he responded, “Oh, probably for a long, long time.” Shaken by the vagueness of his answers, I decided then and there to consult with Phoenix. He would know exactly what to do. With my doctor’s verdict weighing heavily on my mind, I formulated a plan and shared it with my brothers. Together, we arranged an overnight 62
consultation with Phoenix. Under a full moon, we took our camping gear to Flat Rock where we had often before pitched tents and camped overnight. As we approached the site, I felt the powerful energies of the tree, which had taken on a silvery glow in the bright moonlight, its luminous energies radiating in all directions. Together my brothers and I placed our hands on the giant tree and silently invited him to intervene in my behalf. Instantly, I felt a warm infusion of energy unlike anything I had ever felt before, first in the palms of my hands and then radiating throughout my total body. I knew that Phoenix’s healing work had begun. Later that night in the warm comfort of my sleeping bag, I slowly drifted into that between-phase called hypnogogic sleep (which some believe is conducive to out-of-body travel). In that serene state, I felt myself being gently drawn out of my body to the tree. Fully out-of-body, I again placed my hands upon Phoenix to experience an infusion of energy far more powerful than before. It was then that an amazing thing happened—I suddenly felt myself literally entering the tree to become an integral part of its bright interior. In the out-of-body state, I had actually embodied the tree, from its vast root system to its uppermost limbs. I will never forget the thrill of that moment. I had, in spirit, become a tree! I and the tree were one and the same, not separate spirit entities. In that state of oneness, I felt spiritually connected to the highest planes of power! I felt the perfection of mind, body, and spirit. I knew in an instant that I was healed. Momentarily, I returned to my body still at rest in the sleeping bag, where I entered deep, restful sleep for the remainder of the night. A few days later, I underwent additional medical tests. To my doctor’s disbelief, they showed absolutely no evidence of a defective heart. Shaking his head, he blurted out, “Something happened here, I don’t know what,” to which I responded, “I have a friend name Phoenix I’d like for you to meet someday.” Little did I know at that early age that I would devote much of my adult life as a psychologist to the study of the healing powers 63
of nature. Eventually, I moved from the area, but over the years, I returned to that deep forest time and time again, both in and out-of-body, to experience the many rich rewards of interacting with Phoenix. I noticed that several names, initials, and love messages, including hearts with arrows through them, had been carved by visitors into his trunk, not in disrespect, but rather in recognition of an awesome presence. I must admit I carved my own name upon the massive trunk, but with Phoenixâ€™s express permission. For me, Phoenix had become more than just a treeâ€”he was a trusted friend who was always ready to lend a helping hand and share his magnificent powers. Sadly, I recently experienced during sleep what seemed to be out-of-body travel to the primeval forest, but instead of the serenity that characterized my previous visits, I was met with a disturbing gray haze that overshadowed the area. Gliding over the forest, which seemed strangely altered, I searched unsuccessfully for Phoenix. Troubled by the experience, I decided a few days later to visit the forest. I was not prepared for what I found. The forestâ€™s great trees had been recently harvested, leaving behind a rough terrain barren of undergrowth and scattered with debris. Tree limbs and uprooted stumps had been piled into large heaps and set on fire. Still smoldering, they sent forth columns of smoke to form an expansive cloud that hung heavily over the place. The harsh wasteland was without sound or any other sign of life. As I approached the site where Phoenix had stood in splendor for over 150 years, I found no remains of the tree. Even his roots were gone, having been wrenched from the large, fissured boulder, dislodging it and shutting off the flow of water from the spring. All that remained unchanged at the site was Old Flat Rock. I knelt upon it and wept. Abigail, the Hackberry Tree 64
Soon after joining Athens State College (now University) as Professor of Psychology, I introduced into the curriculum an eight-week remediation program called “Summer Start” designed for college applicants whose entrance exams did not qualify them for admission to a regular college program. The specially designed program included instruction in certain core subjects, along with counseling and tutoring. As a part of the program’s counseling component, I introduced what was then an innovative strategy called Tree Power Infusion designed specifically to improve student academic performance. The strategy is based on the premise that our interactions with trees can provide a direct link to totally new sources of untapped potential, both within ourselves and beyond. For use in the procedure, I selected a large hackberry tree situated on campus near the stage entrance of McCandless Auditorium. The tree seemed particularly appropriate for use in the program because of its magnificence as well as the legend associated with it. According to the legend, the tree was planted around the turn of the last century in honor of the talented actress, Abigail Burns, who had performed in McCandless Auditorium and then met with tragic death en route to her next engagement. Soon after her death, the bright image of Abigail appeared at a third floor window of the building, where she is still often seen, particularly around midnight on November 12, the anniversary of her death. Here’s the Tree Power Infusion procedure as used by our Summer Start students who named the hackberry tree Abigail. 1. Formulate your goals, and with your hands resting upon the selected tree, invite it in your own words to be your partner in achieving your stated goals. 2. Gently stroke the tree as you experience your connection to it and the responsiveness of the tree as your energies interact with it. Sense the vibrations of that interaction as the tree’s powerful energies permeate your total being. 3. With your hands still resting upon the tree, envision it as a powerful 65
antenna piercing the unlimited powers of the universe. Again state your goals and express your gratitude to the tree as your partner in achieving them. 4. Conclude the exercise with the affirmation: The energies of my being are balanced and attuned. I am endowed with limitless growth potential. Mentally, physically, and spiritually, I am fully empowered to achieve my highest goals. Incredibly, all thirty students enrolled in Summer Start qualified at the end of the term for entrance into the college’s regular four-year degree program. As further testament of Summer Start’s success, all participants successfully completed the baccalaureate degree, with eleven of the thirty students graduating with honors. That initial Summer Start program was so successful that the college continued it for several years, with Tree Power Infusion remaining an essential component. Although Tree Power Infusion was originally designed to improve student academic performance, it can be used with various trees for a wide range of personal empowerment goals, including losing weight, smoking cessation, building self-esteem, and rejuvenation, to mention but a few. Hercules, the Tulip Tree Near the end of my graduate studies at the University of Alabama, I had a lucid recurrent dream in which a third-floor office window framed the upper branches of a large tulip tree with a squirrel scurrying among its branches. Occasionally the squirrel leaped playfully from the tree onto the windowsill. Since recurrent lucid dreams are often psychically significant, I was not surprised at soon discovering the dream’s precognitive relevance. Upon accepting a professorship at Athens State College and entering my assigned office on the third floor of Founder’s Hall, I saw framed by a window behind my desk the familiar tulip tree with a squirrel scurrying among its branches. Over the several years I occupied that office, the squirrel I named Henry often leaped playfully upon the windowsill exactly 66
as in my recurring dream. Because the tulip tree is a multipurpose tree that can be used for almost any personal empowerment goal, I introduced it to my students as a potential empowerment tool, though I was hesitant to refer to the venerable tree as a tool. Using Tree Power Infusion as previously discussed, my students soon discovered the magnificent power of interacting with the massive tulip tree they named Hercules. They discovered that building self-esteem, promoting academic success, reducing stress, breaking unwanted habits, enriching social relationships, and even gaining admission to their preferred graduate schools were all within the range of possibilities. The Differential Powers of Trees Certain trees seem to be uniquely designed to promote particular empowering effects through our interactions with them. For instance, the pine tree is known for its capacity to instantly energize, though the dramatic infusion of energy is typically short-lived. The cottonwood, on the other hand, is known for its long-term energizing effects, particularly in facilitating productivity, endurance, and adaptability. The oak and beech are all-purpose empowerment trees, with mental, physical, and spiritual empowerment properties. Here are some other differential empowering properties of particular trees: • Black Walnut: Promoting independence, determination, and practicality • Elm: Facilitating self-understanding, inner awareness, and problem solving • Gingko: Promoting psychic development, wisdom, and creativity • Hickory: Facilitating personal achievement, self-discipline, and career success • Poplar: Promoting physical fitness, rejuvenation, and attunement • White Birch: Promoting spirituality, emotional stability, and compassion • Trees Bearing Flowers: Promoting creativity, flexibility, and 67
expanded awareness As already noted, you can access the empowerment properties of a particular tree by simply being in its presence. The interaction is spontaneous but nevertheless potentially empowering. But through structured procedures that include physical contact and deliberate interaction with a selected tree, you can increase its empowerment effects and activate its specialized potentials. The power of trees as earthâ€™s antennae can be amplified even further through the use of such additional tools as the quartz crystal. The crystal is first programmed and then buried at the treeâ€™s base where its energies join those of the tree, amplifying them and targeting them to your stated goals. To program the crystal, first hold it briefly under warm running water and let it air dry on a soft cloth. Next, hold the crystal in your hand and while stroking it gently, specify your empowerment goals, limiting them to no more than three. Finally, while holding the crystal in your hand, invite it to be your empowerment partner in achieving your stated goals. Aside from its effectiveness when used with tree empowerment strategies, the programmed crystal can be a highly effective tool when worn as an ornament or simply carried in oneâ€™s pocket or purse.
Conclusion The magnificent power of trees is available to everyone. The tree can become your antenna to the loftiest power of the universe. Beginning now, you can access that power to achieve your highest goals. At the same time, you can experience the wondrous joy of interacting with the oldest and largest plant on earth. Beyond that, a tree can become a trusted friend that inspires and energies you mentally, physically, and spiritually. Who could ask for more than that?
The Eye Authored by J Hill The Wadjet (or Ujat, meaning "Whole One") is a powerful symbol of protection in ancient Egypt also known as the "Eye of Horus" and the "all seeing eye". The symbol was frequently used in jewelry made of gold, silver, lapis, wood, porcelain, and carnelian, to ensure the safety and health of the bearer and provide wisdom and prosperity. However, it was also known as the "Eye of Ra", a powerful destructive force linked with the 69
fierce heat of the sun which was described as the "Daughter of Ra". The "eye" was personified as the goddess Wadjet and associated with a number of other gods and goddesses (notably Hathor, Bast, Sekhmet, Tefnut, Nekhbet and Mut). The Eye of Horus
Horus was an ancient a sky god whose eyes were said to be the sun and the moon. However, he soon became strongly associated with the sun (and the sun god Ra as Ra-Horakhty ("Ra, who is Horus of the two horizons") while Thoth was associated with the moon. An ancient myth describes a battle between Horus and Set in which Horus´ right eye was torn out and Set lost his testicles! Thoth magically restored Horus´ eye, at which point it was given the name "Wadjet" ("whole" or "healthy"). In this myth it is specifically stated that it is Horus´ left eye which has been torn out, so the myth relates to the waxing and waning of the moon during which the moon appears to have been torn out of the sky before being restored once every lunar month. There are a number of depictions of the restoration of the eye in Greco-Roman temples. Thoth is assisted by fourteen gods including the gods of the Ennead of Hermopolis or thirty male deities (in Ismant el-Kharab, the Dakhla Oasis). Each god represented one of the fifteen days leading up to the full moon, and to the waning moon. The restored eye became emblematic of the re-establishment of order from chaos, thus closely associating it with the idea of Ma'at. In one myth Horus made a gift of the eye to Osiris to help him rule the netherworld. Osiris ate the eye and 70
restored to life. As a result, it became a symbol of life and resurrection. Offerings re sometimes called "the Eye of Horus" because it was thought that the goods offered became divine when presented to a god. The Eye of Horus was believed to have healing and protective power, and it was used as a protective amulet. It was also used as a notation of measurement, particularly for measuring the ingredients in medicines and pigments. The symbol was divided into six parts, representing the shattering of HorusÂ´ eye into six pieces. Each piece was associated with one of the six senses and a specific fraction. More complex fractions were created by adding the symbols together. It is interesting to note that if the pieces are added together the total is 63/64 not 1. Some suggest that the remaining 1/64 represents the magic used by Thoth to restore the eye, while others consider that the missing piece represented the fact that perfection was not possible. However, it is equally likely that they appreciated the simplicity of the system which allowed them to deal with common fractions quickly, after all they already had a symbol for the number "1" and they had other numerical notations available when they 71
needed to use smaller fractions. According to later traditions, the right eye represented the sun and so is called the "Eye of Ra" while the left represented the moon and was known as the "eye of Horus" (although it was also associated with Thoth). However, in many cases it is not clear whether it is the left or right eye which is referred to. Others myths suggest that it is Horus' right eye which was torn out and that the myth refers to a solar eclipse in which the sun is momentarily blotted from the sky. The Eye of Ra According to one myth, Ra (who was at that point the actual Pharaoh of Egypt) was becoming old and weak and the people no longer respected him or his rule. They broke the laws and made jokes at his expense. He did not react well to this and decided to punish mankind by sending an aspect of his daughter, the Eye of Ra. He plucked her from the Ureas (royal serpent) on his brow, and sent her to earth in the form of a lion. She waged war on humanity slaughtering thousands until the fields were awash with human blood. When Ra saw the extent of the devastation he relented and called his daughter back to his side, fearing that she would kill everyone. However, she was in a blood lust and ignored his pleas. So he arranged for 7,000 jugs of beer and pomegranate juice (which stained the beer blood red) to be poured all over the fields around her. She gorged on the "blood" and became so drunk that she slept for three days and awoke with a terrible hangover. Thus mankind was saved from her terrible vengeance. There are a number of different versions of the myth, and a number of goddesses are given the title "Eye of Ra", in particular Hathor, Sekhmet, Tefnut, Bast, Mut, Nekhbet and Wadjet. The "Daughter of Ra" was sometimes symbolized as a Cat who protected Ra from the serpent Apep (linking it with the leonine aspects of (Hathor, Bast, Sekhmet, Tefnut, Mut, Nekhbet and Wadjet amongst others). The Cat was also thought to be able to cure and scorpion or snake bite and was associated with the 72
goddesses Isis (although she is only linked to the symbol in its protective function). copyright J Hill 2010 www.ancientegyptonline.co.uk
Herbal Smoking Mixtures by Howie Brounstein Introduction I became an adult immersed in the counter-culture of the Pacific Northwest. As a teacher, wildcrafter, herbalist, and botanist for more than a decade, many unique herbs have passed through my hands. It was only a matter of time before I tried to smoke them, to see how I might mix different herbs for varying psychological and physiological effects. After my knowledge and experience grew, I began teaching a lecture titled "Herbal Smoking Mixtures: Local Legal Roots, Barks, and Leaves, and Flowers." This class was very popular. Many more people will show up to a class titled "Herbal Smoking Mixtures" than will for "Medicinal Herbs for the Lungs." Perhaps this is a sign of the wild North American society I live in. Perhaps it’s a sign that humans have been intrigued with the idea of fire and smoking since the earliest of our race’s memory. Smoking is a synthesis of fire and smoke, such powerful archetypal images. Perhaps it’s just a fad, and means nothing at all. Nonetheless, I have expanded my lecture, and after smoking many a pipe full over this computer keyboard, produced this book. It doesn’t cover every possible herb. It is a starting point for your own explorations into the world of herbs and smoke. Take this knowledge and run with it, make it your own, create you own herbal stories to tell. I hope this helps you in your quest for a satisfying legal alternative to Tobacco or Marijuana, or perhaps the perfect ceremonial blend. I am a smoker, and I am writing from the viewpoint of a smoker. If you don’t smoke anything regularly, my suggestion is don’t start. Smoking every day on a regular basis is never healthy. Occasional use of smoking herbs, or even Tobacco, is not very damaging. It’s our trend towards making it a habit in excess that becomes the problem. Many of the plants described in this book are difficult, if not impossible, to find on the commercial herb market. These need to be gathered in the wild (wildcrafted), or garden grown. Wildcrafting requires skill and practice. It requires a positive identification. If you are not sure of the plant, or if you are not sure how to harvest wild plants ethically, DON’T 75
wildcraft. Seek one of the many fine teachers available to obtain the necessary skills first. Why Smoke? There are many reasons why people smoke Tobacco, Marijuana, and other herbal mixtures. Here are but a few reasons: Recreation: Some folks find the act of smoking and its effects pleasurable. Sometimes they are just bending under a social pressure (it’s cool to smell like an ashtray). Some herbs taste good when smoked. Certainly, an oral fixation, or some subconscious early childhood memories of mom’s nipples, contribute to constant smoking. Addiction: Recreational use of Tobacco can lead to the dreaded addiction so prevalent in the world today. Tobacco has firmly ingrained itself in every culture in the world it has been introduced to, except for a few religious sects. Don’t let the advertisement fool you; the Marlboro man is an addict. It is very hard for most people to stop on their own. Marijuana is not physically addicting, but there are a few folks who smoke every day and form an emotional dependence on it. Tobacco and Marijuana Alternatives: There are numerous reasons not to smoke Tobacco, health reasons not a small factor. It may be social pressure (it’s so cool not to smell like an ashtray). A satisfying replacement for Tobacco is like the search for the holy grail. Many will look for it and come close, but nothing will be exactly like it. Have you heard the mythical story of the sage herbalist, quite a wise and aromatic 76
fellow? After years of spiritual purification he finally found the proper herbs and curing process to make the perfect Tobacco-like smoking mixture substitute. Unfortunately, shortly thereafter he became fully enlightened and gave up smoking completely. The formula was lost forever. Many people smoke marijuana for a variety of reasons, but wish not to. It may not agree with their constitution; it may not give them the effects theyâ€™re looking for. The fact that it is selectively illegal and semi-legal in some places might contribute to the desire to quit. The biggest reason I see people wanting to quit is drug testing. In the Pacific Northwest, these tests are very popular with employers. Even workers who are not responsible for welfare of others are tested. Evidently, occasional weekend use of marijuana might impair the judgment of janitors, domestic workers at hotels, and the check-out clerks in the local market. Medicine: There are a variety of medicinal uses of smoking mixtures. One can use calming or tranquilizing herbs to relax physically or mentally. Some herbs can be smoked for calming the lungs or to aid in expectoration. The difference between poison and medicine is dosage; smoking a strong herb is one way to regulate its dosage. Spiritual and Ceremonial Uses: Throughout history people have taken (and smoked) herbs to produce altered states of consciousness. Although some in modern times seek hallucinogens for pure recreation, many still use these plants respectfully on the journey for spiritual knowledge. Even the milder herbs are useful during meditation and vision quests. Smoking is a ritual, and the more conscious we are of it, the more we will get from it. It is such a powerful mixture of fire and air.
Preparation of Herbs into Palatable Smoking Mixtures A number of factors contribute to making a palatable smoking mixture. First and foremost is the way you cure the herbs. If you take fresh Tobacco and dry it like any medicinal herb, it becomes an unpalatable obnoxious smoke that the most hard-core smoker couldnâ€™t stomach (or lung, as the case may be). Tobacco is semi-dried slowly, allowing for chemical changes, and is never dried to a crisp. It is packaged slightly moist in air tight containers. If it dries out, the smoker adds an apple slice or sprays it with water. Dried out Tobacco is harsh. Herbal smoking blends are similar. In most cases you do not want the herbs to be dried crispy. Itâ€™s OK for some of the ingredients, but as a whole the mixture should be ever so slightly moist. Some of the most flavorful smoking ingredients need to dry slow, and cure, but the majority are best picked fresh and not dried completely. Package in an airtight container. Most store-bought herbs are too dry for a pleasant smoke and taste harsh. If you use herbs that are too dry, try spraying your mixture lightly with water. Mix it thoroughly and let sit in an airtight container to let the 78
moisture travel throughout the herbs. Experiment with the liquid. Try adding an apple slice or honey. You can always let the herbs air dry if they get too moist to burn properly. Another factor is the consistency of the mixture. The herbs should be well mixed and burn evenly. If you are using a pipe to smoke, this is not quite as important. The mixture can have small pieces of stems and roots without problems. If you plan to roll the herbs in cigarette papers, this becomes very important. Even small stems will poke holes in the paper. Remove all the stems. Powder or finely chop the slower burning roots and hard herbs. Some herbs are especially helpful to obtain the proper physical consistency of the mixture. By far the best physical base for a smoking mixture is Mullein. When prepared correctly, it is light and puffy. The other herbs mix well into it, and it will burn evenly when lit. It is a good carrier of the other substances. You can also use finely shredded barks. Thin slices or inner barks of plants like dogwood and willow should be finely cut into long strips, much like fine Virginian Tobacco. This can be difficult to do, but it works well. Certain plants need to be rubbed before use. Mullein and Mugwort donâ€™t become fluffy until you take the herbs in your hands and rub them. Keep rubbing until the herb becomes light and puffy. Sometimes I put the Mullein in a blender before mixing. It becomes even more fluffy, but it lacks the personal touch hand rubbing gives. Finally, the amounts and kinds of flavoring herbs you use will change the palatability. You need to just play with it until you get it right. Unfortunately, most commercially available herbal smoking blends donâ€™t properly prepare, cure, and package the herbs. They often have good recipes, and I have to assume the manufacturers have the best intentions but lack of resources or knowledge. Some are still good enough to smoke. Very few rival even the simplest hand picked, rubbed and/or cured, and semi-dried do it yourself mix.
Herbal Smoking Mixture Recipes
Standard Smoking Mix: Rubbed Mullein leaf as a base Kinnikinnik leaf, for body, finely broken Optionally Manzanita leaf and Pipsissewa for added body Optional flavoring herbs to taste
• • • • •
Another Favorite Mix: Rubbed Mullein leaf as a base Willow Bark, finely cut for body Skullcap Leaf, for calming effects Osha Root, finely ground for flavor Mix thoroughly. Mildly relaxing
• • •
To Quit Smoking: • • • • • • • • • • • •
Phase 1: Rubbed Mullein leaf as a base Kinnikinnik leaf, for body, finely broken Manzanita leaf, for added body, finely broken Skullcap Leaf, for vitally needed calming effect Lobelia, as needed for lobeline Mint, small amounts for menthol cigarette smokers Phase 2: Stop adding Lobelia Add Coltsfoot, as needed, not so strong as to cause coughing fits Increase the Mullein Leaf Continue to add more Mullein until Phase 3, Mullein alone.
Expectorant Blend: This blend is excellent for a general lung cleanse or chest cold, but do not 80
use when coughing up blood, or if it hurts when you breathe. • Rubbed Mullein leaf as a base • Coltsfoot, not so strong as to cause coughing fits • Horehound, not so strong as to cause coughing fits • Flavorings optional Mellow Mixture: Relaxing, mild and pleasant alternative to Marijuana • Skullcap • Parrot’s Beak • Elephants Head to taste Strong Relaxant: This can make you sleepy so do not drive any bulldozers or jumbo jets when smoking. • Desert Skullcap • Lobelia - a pinch Too Stoned Blend: This mixture is smoked as an aid to quit a long term Marijuana habit. • Rubbed Mullein Leaf as a base • Calamus Root, small pieces or powder • Elephant’s Head Buds, for calming effect and flavor • Coltsfoot, not so strong as to cause coughing fits Too Expensive Blend: This blend will help with the rising costs of Cannabis. You can substitute the Cannabis buds with any quality Cannabis, and the other herbs will help to stretch it out without diluting its effect. • 1/2 High Quality Cannabis buds • 1/4 Elephant’s Head Buds • 1/4 Skullcap Leaf 81
Ceremonial Smoke: Not an everyday smoke, for vision quests and spiritual pursuits. Use consciously. • Rubbed Mullein leaf as a base • Fermented Scotch Broom Flowers • Desert Skullcap, just a small amount Skullcap Leaf • Elephant’s Head Leaf • Parrot’s Beak Leaf • Osha Root, powdered for flavor
Wing of Newt - by Jehana Silverwing "Will you stop calling me 'Sow', all right? That's a female pig. The name is Sam. Sam, as in SAM". He whispers that lowly to the woman who has just announced his talk. He clears his throat, and steps forward to address the students, leaving the well-meaning facilitator behind. Someone always ends up slaughtering his name, he ruefully reminds himself. He's honored to be here, on Religious Freedoms day. This is the day each school brings in representative theo/alogians from all the different religions in the district. Each gets their hour in the sun. It also happens to be October, so there is only one thing on people's minds. "My name is Sam Hain. Rhymes with 'a-THAME'. That's the gizmo Witches 83
use to slice open apples to show that there are very few really regular pentagons inside. Oh, the pentagon. People are always confusing that with that building down there in Washington -- what is it? Yes, the Pentacle. You know, where they've got that demon trapped. "Oh, yes. Before I get too carried away with all that arcane lingo, let's touch upon some basics. The religion is Wicca. The root of 'Wicca' is 'Wic', and is derived from the word 'Witch'. And, in order to emphasize that letter 'C', the religion is often called 'WitchCraft'. Now, breaking this final word down, etymologically, we have the words 'Itch' and 'Craft'; beginning with the letter 'W'. 'W' stands for Woman, Wit, Wisdom and Woozy. Woozy, you know, like if you drink too much. So, anyhow: Witchcraft is an itchy craft or skill for women, wits, half wits, the inebriated, and the wise. Of course, we are all in the last category -- at the very least. "Okay. The roots of Witchcraft. The roots are to be found in your grandmother's root cellar. Which is to figure. They let some gardener loose, and he either tripped over some practitioners in the woods, or he made it up out of figs and mints, or somewhere in between -- your choice. It's appropriate, though -- the phenomenal growth of a contemporary earth religion had to be instigated by a gardener." He acknowledges a hand. "You don't ride brooms, do you?" asks a youth with a face like a pimple. He chuckles. "No, no. That myth was invented by the Inquisition. No brooms. Most of us don't keep clean homes, anyway. Too many grimoire's, oils and incenses. And the stuff like eye of baby and wing of newt -- that went out about the time of Shakespeare. Besides, winged newts went extinct. Nowadays, we're pretty environmental. "Speaking of the Inquisition (and we all know nobody expects it), the Inquisitors wiped out the entire population of women in Europe. Men had to come up with a kind of a temporary reverse-parthenogenesis for the race to survive. Either that, or it was space aliens. We've got some revisionists out there now who don't believe more than a handful of people were deep-fat- fried by the Inquisition, but they're crackpots. A scarce few others claim that maybe only a relative few were killed for Witchcraft -84
perhaps in the tens of thousands to maybe a couple hundred thousand. But those numbers seem reasonable, so these figures probably aren't right. The one thing the human race *isn't* is reasonable, so feel free to pick an extreme in either direction. "Anyhow, we Witches gather together in covens, or else in herds of solitaries -- otherwise known as festivals or networks. Sometimes we meet in gaggles, prides, pods or clutches. We meet once in a while, or whenever the moon is blue. "A lot of us follow the reincarnation thing. And the truths of ancient lands which rise from the sea. As proof, consider the tales of Atlanta. It's risen from the seas, and even from the land, into a mass of skyscrapers. It's no accident that one of the nation's largest airline hubs is in Atlanta. Gotta provide transportation for all the souls to home in on. And, if you don't think lands can rise from the seas, check out the Midwest. "Witches give honor to the elements. That's why we can be seen standing out in the rain so often. Our rituals take so long because we usually honor each and every of the 106 elements in the periodic chart, although we often leave out the man-made ones. The anti-nuke crowd leaves out all the radioactive ones as well. "The religious part is, of course, that we have a plethora of Gods and Goddesses. It's like an herb garden -- they're many, they're hardy, some of them are no better than weeds, and most of them come back the next year. Yes, we have our dying and rising Goddesses and Gods. Most important in the Goddess department is the Maid, Mother and Crone. The Crone is the old warty one you got to watch out for, but that's all right -she's got arthritis and might not catch you. The Mother -- well, she gives birth to everything, so she hasn't time for much else. And the Maid, hey, she's the one who does the dishes and picks up after everyone." "What about Halloween?" asks someone else. "Samhain. Named after me." He pronounces it like his name. "Or maybe it was the other way around. I wasn't around, then. 'Halloween' means 'little hollow'. Hollows were those holes in tree trunks that were such a big deal in fairy tales. Where the Keebler cookie elves live, at least by ill-repute. "It's one of the Sabbats. There are eight of them. There are the Quarter 85
Sabbats and the Crossed Quarters, and Samhain is a particularly cross Quarter. Almost a Susan B. Anthony Dollar of the occult world, it's that big and feisty. It's the night when the shawls between the world are thin, which is why it's usually pretty chilly. But we try to go outside anyway. "It's the night Witches talk to their Dead. There's a reason we collect those little decals with roses and skeletons at music stores. Ever wonder why there are so *many* of those things? It's *us*, man. Anyhow, it is permissible to discuss anything you desire with the Dead. Remember, the Dead tell no tales. "The purpose of Samhain is to prepare for winter. Those of you who are not Witches fill the same task by writing Christmas cards as well as by hiding from the Season of Advertising which begins about then. Well, since we do Yule instead of Christmas, we have other preparations. In the old days, the final crops were taken in. It's the Wiccan end-of-year, our New Year's Eve without streamers and overpriced restaurants. At Samhain, the last crop would be taken in, and that's what folks would eat until spring; mold, rodent droppings, and all. "The Celtic kids used to knock on doors, just like kids do today. Only then, it was "Trick *AND* Treat". You were supposed to give the kid something tasty like pudding wrapped in boar's stomach lining, and you were supposed to pull some kind of nasty trick on the kid as well. Think of a drop floor under your welcome mat -- the Celts played tricks for keeps. Hardy and lusty sons of guns, they were. If you failed to do a trick of your own, the kid was perfectly justified in thinking something up on his or her own. Note that toilet paper, shaving cream, and rotten eggs are for pikers. Fortunately, we've come a long way since then. However, remember that there is a precedent for that razor in your candied apple. It's a gift from a reincarnated Celt. Witches are too busy partying to do anything like that. "In fact, we'll party all night long at the slightest provocation. On Samhain our excuse is that midnight is the most magical of the hours. And once one is up that late, one may as well continue. There's a certain somberness about this particular occasion, but we take it in stride. We'll even bob for apples -- the game's symbolic meaning is Futility, except for 86
those bobbers with big mouths. We'll wear costumes, so long as they are black. Black's just a Witchy thing: you wouldn't understand. Its meaning is absence, since black is technically the absence of all colors. People who always wear a lot of black wish to bring this sense of the Void into themselves. At Samhain, black is highly appropriate: we often seek to void out the past year like a bad check." He takes a long pause for air. Attention still seems to be with him, he notes gratefully. "Okay, so what are we Witches doing today? Well, there's a certain type of politics. You know the old Craft saying, 'If that which you seek, you cannot find it within, you'll never find it without -- unless you push.' So we have lots of fun boycotting movies people wouldn't have gone to see in the first place if we hadn't made a stink about them. Darn shame cigars are out of fashion, even if Broomhilda still smokes one..." He fades into a reverie of musing. "Oh, yes, as I was saying. Witchcraft today. It isn't as picturesque as in the old days. The succubus's, incubus's and abacuses are all down in Club Med, where the rest of us can't afford to go. Glad they can afford it. If they head far enough south, maybe they'll transform the rainforests -'Make Love, Not Cattle'. Yeah, Witchcraft can be pretty transformative. Not many religions let you bang on rawhide all night and plunk a computer keyboard by day." He concludes his talk, and leaves to applause, feeling good about having clarified the Craft like drawn butter. Students follow him outside, as he straddles his ElectroLux. They laugh, as he makes verbal vroom-vroomvroom noises. Nothing happens. "Drat", he says. "Anyone got a car? And jumper cables?" Ten minutes later, Mr. Haim and his vacuum cleaner are skybound, circling up and into the clouds. %%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%% (Originally published in the Samhain 1993 issue of _Surrender Dorothy_, the Fairfield County (CT) Wiccan (Facowi) Newsletter.) The Facowi are now the CWPN -- Connecticut Wiccan and Pagan Network. 87
Also uploaded to the Religion Forum and to the New Age B Forum of CompuServe, and to the Pagan Message Board on America Online Note: this document precedes the ascendency into national power of any politician with a similar, reptilian, name. I refuse to re-title this on his account. (Document Copyright as Freeware 1993 by Jehana Silverwing, firstname.lastname@example.org. Permission is hereby granted to reprint the text of this document in its entirety. My name and this notice must remain intact.)
WHAT CAN HE SAY? By: Andrew A cerebral mind fuck, full of decay, As I look around me at this pitiless, mindless waste, All I see before me in this intrepid state of decay, & rotting stench, Ah shit it's just another dead body. with feathers drench in tears of blood, Damn I guess anther one of daddyâ€™s precious angels, met it's fate. Tis a shame when you think about it, For he did let his only begotten son to die, like a stuck pig, So why would he care if I take another one, For they look better with there feathers wet in blood, And to hear them scream at a god that does not care, Opps there went another one, 89
I guess He really doesn't care, Its all the same to me, For in the end, at least I can say that I didn't turn my back on my children! What can he say when his time comes!
When Darkness comes By: Andrew I can feel the darkness closing in on me, As it slowly chokes the life out of me, Showing me all my sins & shattered dreams, Leaving me bare & hollow on the inside, Never knowing true happiness, Only twisted glimpses, set to cause more pain, When will this darkness fade, Or is it I that must fade away, Surely that must be, Because my soul knows no peace, Only the bitter pain of a life that has become meaningless, I only want what other's seem to have, But yet I can't seem to find even that, And when I do think I have found just a piece, the darkness comes & shows me the truth, That happiness is not free and meant to be, you must pay with every fiber of your soul, And then maybe it will give you a taste, Just enough to awaken those dreams, Then it comes once again to show you the real truth, No tears to give I shed them all long ago, No love to give for it as grown so cold, No heart left to ache, for it was broken one to many time, What more does it want, I have nothing left to give, 90
And yet it wont give me what I now want, As it lets the air flow back into my lungs, And watching the pain of taken in the very breath of life, Laughing at the fact that it still can find away to bring such pain, Just letting me now, that I am still alive. Wow what a cruel joke, Must not have gotten the memo, Pain is just another form of happiness, So who is laughing now, So do please come again!
Stillness of Heart
----------------Riding tidal waves of pain and pleasure a sea of emotion drifting endlessly into cosmic bliss lost in sensual serenity heart and soul wrapped in the jagged tethers that bind so tightly soft echoed whispers upon the warmth of the wind caressing and soothing gentle touches sweetest of kisses upon cold lips fueling a fire that ravages and torments beats of passion and longing lost in the embrace of the light of the moon the endless search for the unattainable stillness of heart... ©· •*`*•..•Bella•..• *`*•·
-----------Upon silken threads of dreams my soul is given wings to fly endless journeys created beyond my waking eyes. Vast ebony seas guided by the light of the moon golden stardust cascading down like a gentle rain cystal lakes reflecting amber ripples of the sun carry the echoes of gentle heartbeats the silent songs of the universe sweet intoxicated aromas fill my lungs coursing through my veins a river of crimson ebbing the beauty bestowed with each breath drawn.. dancing to a rhythm that gently whispers in my ear mesmerizing and enchanting 93
weaving a circle of light that stills my heart granting me silent lucidity.......... ~©· •*`*•..•Bella•..• *`*•· 05/17/2011
Beyond My Waking Eyes 94
As I sit in silence listening to the soft echoes that beat within my chest my thoughts roam . A soft caress touches me the koss of the wind that carries all telling whispers of a voice that speaks gently to my soul. Closing my eyes a tranquil embrace weaves around me. Soothing my mind into a hypnotic trance. as tender as lovers fingers dancing across my skin.. floating in euphoric grace I leave my flesh travelling upon a single breath I've become a being with no shape meandering through time and space . A vessel of warmth and love seeking out the rhythmic chanting that calls to my soul. . For deep within I see the mirrored pools reflecting beauty like no other. Locked within this gaze and mesmerizing dream I soar . Feeling the heated light of myself burning in rapid waves 95
how my heart sighs as indigo tears fall to the world I have left below. Drifting an endless abyss of splendor bound within. A moment in time frozen beyond my waking eyes as the veil of darkness unfolds . I return to that which I began as a fallen angel soaring a sea of dreams upon ebony wings........... ~©· •*`*•..•Bella•..• *`*•· 08/26/2011
THE LEGEND OF SLEEPY HOLLOW by Washington Irving Found among the papers of the late Diedrech Knickerbocker. A pleasing land of drowsy head it was, Of dreams that wave before the half-shut eye; And of gay castles in the clouds that pass, Forever flushing round a summer sky. Castle of Indolence. In the bosom of one of those spacious coves which indent the eastern shore of the Hudson, at that broad expansion of the river denominated by the ancient Dutch navigators the Tappan Zee, and where they always prudently shortened sail and implored the protection of St. Nicholas when they crossed, there lies a small market town or rural port, which by some is called Greensburgh, but which is more generally and properly known by the name of Tarry Town. This name was given, we are told, in former days, by the good housewives 97
of the adjacent country, from the inveterate propensity of their husbands to linger about the village tavern on market days. Be that as it may, I do not vouch for the fact, but merely advert to it, for the sake of being precise and authentic. Not far from this village, perhaps about two miles, there is a little valley or rather lap of land among high hills, which is one of the quietest places in the whole world. A small brook glides through it, with just murmur enough to lull one to repose; and the occasional whistle of a quail or tapping of a woodpecker is almost the only sound that ever breaks in upon the uniform tranquillity. I recollect that, when a stripling, my first exploit in squirrel-shooting was in a grove of tall walnut-trees that shades one side of the valley. I had wandered into it at noontime, when all nature is peculiarly quiet, and was startled by the roar of my own gun, as it broke the Sabbath stillness around and was prolonged and reverberated by the angry echoes. If ever I should wish for a retreat whither I might steal from the world and its distractions, and dream quietly away the remnant of a troubled life, I know of none more promising than this little valley. From the listless repose of the place, and the peculiar character of its inhabitants, who are descendants from the original Dutch settlers, this sequestered glen has long been known by the name of SLEEPY HOLLOW, and its rustic lads are called the Sleepy Hollow Boys throughout all the neighboring country. A drowsy, dreamy influence seems to hang over the land, and to pervade the very atmosphere. Some say that the place was bewitched by a High German doctor, during the early days of the settlement; others, that an old Indian chief, the prophet or wizard of his tribe, held his powwows there before the country was discovered by Master Hendrick Hudson. Certain it is, the place still continues under the sway of some witching power, that holds a spell over the minds of the good people, causing them to walk in a continual reverie. They are given to all kinds of marvelous beliefs; are subject to trances and visions, and frequently see strange sights, and hear music and voices in the air. The whole neighborhood abounds with local tales, haunted spots, and twilight superstitions; stars shoot and meteors glare oftener across the valley than in any other part of the country, and the nightmare, with her whole ninefold, seems to make it the favorite scene of her gambols. The 98
dominant spirit, however, that haunts this enchanted region, and seems to be commander-in-chief of all the powers of the air, is the apparition of a figure on horseback, without a head. It is said by some to be the ghost of a Hessian trooper, whose head had been carried away by a cannon-ball, in some nameless battle during the Revolutionary War, and who is ever and anon seen by the country folk hurrying along in the gloom of night, as if on the wings of the wind. His haunts are not confined to the valley, but extend at times to the adjacent roads, and especially to the vicinity of a church at no great distance. Indeed, certain of the most authentic historians of those parts, who have been careful in collecting and collating the floating facts concerning this spectre, allege that the body of the trooper having been buried in the churchyard, the ghost rides forth to the scene of battle in nightly quest of his head, and that the rushing speed with which he sometimes passes along the Hollow, like a midnight blast, is owing to his being belated, and in a hurry to get back to the churchyard before daybreak. Such is the general purport of this legendary superstition, which has furnished materials for many a wild story in that region of shadows; and the spectre is known at all the country firesides, by the name of the Headless Horseman of Sleepy Hollow. It is remarkable that the visionary propensity I have mentioned is not confined to the native inhabitants of the valley, but is unconsciously imbibed by every one who resides there for a time. However wide awake they may have been before they entered that sleepy region, they are sure, in a little time, to inhale the witching influence of the air, and begin to grow imaginative, to dream dreams, and see apparitions. I mention this peaceful spot with all possible laud for it is in such little retired Dutch valleys, found here and there embosomed in the great State of New York, that population, manners, and customs remain fixed, while the great torrent of migration and improvement, which is making such incessant changes in other parts of this restless country, sweeps by them unobserved. They are like those little nooks of still water, which border a rapid stream, where we may see the straw and bubble riding quietly at anchor, or slowly revolving in their mimic harbor, undisturbed by the rush of the passing current. Though many years have elapsed since I trod the drowsy shades of Sleepy Hollow, yet I question 99
whether I should not still find the same trees and the same families vegetating in its sheltered bosom. In this by-place of nature there abode, in a remote period of American history, that is to say, some thirty years since, a worthy wight of the name of Ichabod Crane, who sojourned, or, as he expressed it, "tarried," in Sleepy Hollow, for the purpose of instructing the children of the vicinity. He was a native of Connecticut, a State which supplies the Union with pioneers for the mind as well as for the forest, and sends forth yearly its legions of frontier woodmen and country schoolmasters. The cognomen of Crane was not inapplicable to his person. He was tall, but exceedingly lank, with narrow shoulders, long arms and legs, hands that dangled a mile out of his sleeves, feet that might have served for shovels, and his whole frame most loosely hung together. His head was small, and flat at top, with huge ears, large green glassy eyes, and a long snipe nose, so that it looked like a weather-cock perched upon his spindle neck to tell which way the wind blew. To see him striding along the profile of a hill on a windy day, with his clothes bagging and fluttering about him, one might have mistaken him for the genius of famine descending upon the earth, or some scarecrow eloped from a cornfield. His schoolhouse was a low building of one large room, rudely constructed of logs; the windows partly glazed, and partly patched with leaves of old copybooks. It was most ingeniously secured at vacant hours, by a *withe twisted in the handle of the door, and stakes set against the window shutters; so that though a thief might get in with perfect ease, he would find some embarrassment in getting out, --an idea most probably borrowed by the architect, Yost Van Houten, from the mystery of an eelpot. The schoolhouse stood in a rather lonely but pleasant situation, just at the foot of a woody hill, with a brook running close by, and a formidable birch-tree growing at one end of it. From hence the low murmur of his pupils' voices, conning over their lessons, might be heard in a drowsy summer's day, like the hum of a beehive; interrupted now and then by the authoritative voice of the master, in the tone of menace or command, or, peradventure, by the appalling sound of the birch, as he urged some tardy loiterer along the flowery path of knowledge. Truth to say, he was a conscientious man, and ever bore in mind the golden 100
maxim, "Spare the rod and spoil the child." Ichabod Crane's scholars certainly were not spoiled. I would not have it imagined, however, that he was one of those cruel potentates of the school who joy in the smart of their subjects; on the contrary, he administered justice with discrimination rather than severity; taking the burden off the backs of the weak, and laying it on those of the strong. Your mere puny stripling, that winced at the least flourish of the rod, was passed by with indulgence; but the claims of justice were satisfied by inflicting a double portion on some little tough wrong headed, broad-skirted Dutch urchin, who sulked and swelled and grew dogged and sullen beneath the birch. All this he called "doing his duty by their parents;" and he never inflicted a chastisement without following it by the assurance, so consolatory to the smarting urchin, that "he would remember it and thank him for it the longest day he had to live." When school hours were over, he was even the companion and playmate of the larger boys; and on holiday afternoons would convoy some of the smaller ones home, who happened to have pretty sisters, or good housewives for mothers, noted for the comforts of the cupboard. Indeed, it behooved him to keep on good terms with his pupils. The revenue arising from his school was small, and would have been scarcely sufficient to furnish him with daily bread, for he was a huge feeder, and, though lank, had the dilating powers of an anaconda; but to help out his maintenance, he was, according to country custom in those parts, boarded and lodged at the houses of the farmers whose children he instructed. With these he lived successively a week at a time, thus going the rounds of the neighborhood, with all his worldly effects tied up in a cotton handkerchief. That all this might not be too onerous on the purses of his rustic patrons, who are apt to considered the costs of schooling a grievous burden, and schoolmasters as mere drones he had various ways of rendering himself both useful and agreeable. He assisted the farmers occasionally in the lighter labors of their farms, helped to make hay, mended the fences, took the horses to water, drove the cows from pasture, and cut wood for the winter fire. He laid aside, too, all the dominant dignity and absolute sway with which he lorded it in his little empire, the school, and became wonderfully gentle and ingratiating. He 101
found favor in the eyes of the mothers by petting the children, particularly the youngest; and like the lion bold, which whilom so magnanimously the lamb did hold, he would sit with a child on one knee, and rock a cradle with his foot for whole hours together. In addition to his other vocations, he was the singing- master of the neighborhood, and picked up many bright shillings by instructing the young folks in psalmody. It was a matter of no little vanity to him on Sundays, to take his station in front of the church gallery, with a band of chosen singers; where, in his own mind, he completely carried away the palm from the parson. Certain it is, his voice resounded far above all the rest of the congregation; and there are peculiar quavers still to be heard in that church, and which may even be heard half a mile off, quite to the opposite side of the mill-pond, on a still Sunday morning, which are said to be legitimately descended from the nose of Ichabod Crane. Thus, by divers little makeshifts, in that ingenious way which is commonly denominated "by hook and by crook," the worthy pedagogue got on tolerably enough, and was thought, by all who understood nothing of the labor of headwork, to have a wonderfully easy life of it. The schoolmaster is generally a man of some importance in the female circle of a rural neighborhood; being considered a kind of idle, gentlemanlike personage, of vastly superior taste and accomplishments to the rough country swains, and, indeed, inferior in learning only to the parson. His appearance, therefore, is apt to occasion some little stir at the tea-table of a farmhouse, and the addition of a supernumerary dish of cakes or sweetmeats, or, peradventure, the parade of a silver teapot. Our man of letters, therefore, was peculiarly happy in the smiles of all the country damsels. How he would figure among them in the churchyard, between services on Sundays; gathering grapes for them from the wild vines that overran the surrounding trees; reciting for their amusement all the epitaphs on the tombstones; or sauntering, with a whole bevy of them, along the banks of the adjacent mill-pond; while the more bashful country bumpkins hung sheepishly back, envying his superior elegance and address. From his half-itinerant life, also, he was a kind of traveling gazette, carrying the whole budget of local gossip from house to house, so that his appearance was always greeted with satisfaction. He was, 102
moreover, esteemed by the women as a man of great erudition, for he had read several books quite through, and was a perfect master of Cotton Mather's "History of New England Witchcraft," in which, by the way, he most firmly and potently believed. He was, in fact, an odd mixture of small shrewdness and simple credulity. His appetite for the marvelous, and his powers of digesting it, were equally extraordinary; and both had been increased by his residence in this spell-bound region. No tale was too gross or monstrous for his capacious swallow. It was often his delight, after his school was dismissed in the afternoon, to stretch himself on the rich bed of clover bordering the little brook that whimpered by his school-house, and there con over old Mather's direful tales, until the gathering dusk of evening made the printed page a mere mist before his eyes. Then, as he wended his way by swamp and stream and awful woodland, to the farmhouse where he happened to be quartered, every sound of nature, at that witching hour, fluttered his excited imagination, --the moan of the whip-poor-will from the hillside, the boding cry of the tree toad, that harbinger of storm, the dreary hooting of the screech owl, to the sudden rustling in the thicket of birds frightened from their roost. The fireflies, too, which sparkled most vividly in the darkest places, now and then startled him, as one of uncommon brightness would stream across his path; and if, by chance, a huge blockhead of a beetle came winging his blundering flight against him, the poor varlet was ready to give up the ghost, with the idea that he was struck with a witch's token. His only resource on such occasions, either to drown thought or drive away evil spirits, was to sing psalm tunes and the good people of Sleepy Hollow, as they sat by their doors of an evening, were often filled with awe at hearing his nasal melody, "in linked sweetness long drawn out," floating from the distant hill, or along the dusky road. Another of his sources of fearful pleasure was to pass long winter evenings with the old Dutch wives, as they sat spinning by the fire, with a row of apples roasting and spluttering along the hearth, and listen to their marvellous tales of ghosts and goblins, and haunted fields, and haunted brooks, and haunted bridges, and haunted houses, and particularly of the headless horseman, or Galloping Hessian of the Hollow, as they sometimes called him. He would 103
delight them equally by his anecdotes of witchcraft, and of the direful omens and portentous sights and sounds in the air, which prevailed in the earlier times of Connecticut; and would frighten them woefully with speculations upon comets and shooting stars; and with the alarming fact that the world did absolutely turn round, and that they were half the time topsy-turvy! But if there was a pleasure in all this, while snugly cuddling in the chimney corner of a chamber that was all of a ruddy glow from the crackling wood fire, and where, of course, no spectre dared to show its face, it was dearly purchased by the terrors of his subsequent walk homewards. What fearful shapes and shadows beset his path, amidst the dim and ghastly glare of a snowy night! With what wistful look did he eye every trembling ray of light streaming across the waste fields from some distant window! How often was he appalled by some shrub covered with snow, which, like a sheeted spectre, beset his very path! How often did he shrink with curdling awe at the sound of his own steps on the frosty crust beneath his feet; and dread to look over his shoulder, lest he should behold some uncouth being tramping close behind him! and how often was he thrown into complete dismay by some rushing blast, howling among the trees, in the idea that it was the Galloping Hessian on one of his nightly scourings! All these, however, were mere terrors of the night, phantoms of the mind that walk in darkness; and though he had seen many spectres in his time, and been more than once beset by Satan in divers shapes, in his lonely perambulations, yet daylight put an end to all these evils; and he would have passed a pleasant life of it, in despite of the Devil and all his works, if his path had not been crossed by a being that causes more perplexity to mortal man than ghosts, goblins, and the whole race of witches put together, and that was--a woman. Among the musical disciples who assembled, one evening in each week, to receive his instructions in psalmody, was Katrina Van Tassel, the daughter and only child of a substantial Dutch farmer. She was a booming lass of fresh eighteen; plump as a partridge; ripe and melting and rosy-cheeked as one of her father's peaches, and universally famed, not merely for her beauty, but her vast expectations. She was withal a little of a coquette, as might be perceived even in her dress, which was a mixture of ancient and modern 104
fashions, as most suited to set of her charms. She wore the ornaments of pure yellow gold, which her great-great-grandmother had brought over from Saar dam; the tempting stomacher of the olden time, and withal a provokingly short petticoat, to display the prettiest foot and ankle in the country round. Ichahod Crane had a soft and foolish heart towards the sex; and it is not to be wondered at, that so tempting a morsel soon found favor in his eyes, more especially after he had visited her in her paternal mansion. Old Baltus Van Tassel was a perfect picture of a thriving, contented, liberal-hearted farmer. He seldom, it is true, sent either his eyes or his thoughts beyond the boundaries of his own farm; but within those everything was snug, happy and well-conditioned. He was satisfied with his wealth, but not proud of it; and piqued himself upon the hearty abundance, rather than the style in which he lived. His stronghold was situated on the banks of the Hudson, in one of those green, sheltered, fertile nooks in which the Dutch farmers are so fond of nestling. A great elm tree spread its broad branches over it, at the foot of which bubbled up a spring of the softest and sweetest water, in a little well formed of a barrel; and then stole sparkling away through the grass, to a neighboring brook, that babbled along among alders and dwarf willows. Hard by the farmhouse was a vast barn, that might have served for a church; every window and crevice of which seemed bursting forth with the treasures of the farm; the flail was busily resounding within it from morning to night; swallows and martins skimmed twittering about the eaves; an rows of pigeons, some with one eye turned up, as if watching the weather, some with their heads under their wings or buried in their bosoms, and others swelling, and cooing, and bowing about their dames, were enjoying the sunshine on the roof. Sleek unwieldy porkers were grunting in the repose and abundance of their pens, from whence sallied forth, now and then, troops of sucking pigs, as if to snuff the air. A stately squadron of snowy geese were riding in an adjoining pond, convoying whole fleets of ducks; regiments of turkeys were gobbling through the farmyard, and Guinea fowls fretting about it, like ill-tempered housewives, with their peevish, discontented cry. Before the barn door strutted the gallant cock, that pattern of a husband, a warrior and a fine gentleman, clapping his 105
burnished wings and crowing in the pride and gladness of his heart, --sometimes tearing up the earth with his feet, and then generously calling his ever-hungry family of wives and children to enjoy the rich morsel which he had discovered. The pedagogue's mouth watered as he looked upon this sumptuous promise of luxurious winter fare. In his devouring mind's eye, he pictured to himself every roasting-pig running about with a pudding in his belly, and an apple in his mouth; the pigeons were snugly put to bed in a comfortable pie, and tucked in with a coverlet of crust; the geese were swimming in their own gravy; and the ducks pairing cosily in dishes, like snug married couples, with a decent competency of onion sauce. In the porkers he saw carved out the future sleek side of bacon, and juicy relishing ham; not a turkey but he beheld daintily trussed up, with its gizzard under its wing, and, peradventure, a necklace of savory sausages; and even bright chanticleer himself lay sprawling on his back, in a side dish, with uplifted claws, as if craving that quarter which his chivalrous spirit disdained to ask while living. As the enraptured Ichabod fancied all this, and as he rolled his great green eyes over the fat meadow lands, the rich fields of wheat, of rye, of buckwheat, and Indian corn, and the orchards burdened with ruddy fruit, which surrounded the warm tenement of Van Tassel, his heart yearned after the damsel who was to inherit these domains, and his imagination expanded with the idea, how they might be readily turned into cash, and the money invested in immense tracts of wild land, and shingle palaces in the wilderness. Nay, his busy fancy already realized his hopes, and presented to him the blooming Katrina, with a whole family of children, mounted on the top of a wagon loaded with household trumpery, with pots and kettles dangling beneath; and he beheld himself bestriding a pacing mare, with a colt at her heels, setting out for Kentucky, Tennessee, --or the Lord knows where! When he entered the house, the conquest of his heart was complete. It was one of those spacious farmhouses, with high- ridged but lowly sloping roofs, built in the style handed down from the first Dutch settlers; the low projecting eaves forming a piazza along the front, capable of being closed up in bad weather. Under this were hung flails, harness, various utensils of husbandry, and nets for fishing in the neighboring river. Benches were 106
built along the sides for summer use; and a great spinning-wheel at one end, and a churn at the other, showed the various uses to which this important porch might be devoted. From this piazza the wondering Ichabod entered the hall, which formed the centre of the mansion, and the place of usual residence. Here rows of resplendent pewter, ranged on a long dresser, dazzled his eyes. In one corner stood a huge bag of wool, ready to be spun; in another, a quantity of linsey-woolsey just from the loom; ears of Indian corn, and strings of dried apples and peaches, hung in gay festoons along the walls, mingled with the gaud of red peppers; and a door left ajar gave him a peep into the best parlor, where the claw-footed chairs and dark mahogany tables shone like mirrors; andirons, with their accompanying shovel and tongs, glistened from their covert of asparagus tops; mock- oranges and conch - shells decorated the mantelpiece; strings of various-colored birds eggs were suspended above it; a great ostrich egg was hung from the centre of the room, and a corner cupboard, knowingly left open, displayed immense treasures of old silver and well-mended china. From the moment Ichabod laid his eyes upon these regions of delight, the peace of his mind was at an end, and his only study was how to gain the affections of the peerless daughter of Van Tassel. In this enterprise, however, he had more real difficulties than generally fell to the lot of a knight-errant of yore, who seldom had anything but giants, enchanters, fiery dragons, and such like easily conquered adversaries, to contend with and had to make his way merely through gates of iron and brass, and walls of adamant to the castle keep, where the lady of his heart was confined; all which he achieved as easily as a man would carve his way to the centre of a Christmas pie; and then the lady gave him her hand as a matter of course. Ichabod, on the contrary, had to win his way to the heart of a country coquette, beset with a labyrinth of whims and caprices, which were forever presenting new difficulties and impediments; and he had to encounter a host of fearful adversaries of real flesh and blood, the numerous rustic admirers, who beset every portal to her heart, keeping a watchful and angry eye upon each other, but ready to fly out in the common cause against any new competitor. Among these, the most formidable was a burly, roaring, 107
roystering blade, of the name of Abraham, or, according to the Dutch abbreviation, Brom Van Brunt, the hero of the country round which rang with his feats of strength and hardihood. He was broad-shouldered and double-jointed, with short curly black hair, and a bluff but not unpleasant countenance, having a mingled air of fun and arrogance From his Herculean frame and great powers of limb he had received the nickname of BROM BONES, by which he was universally known. He was famed for great knowledge and skill in horsemanship, being as dexterous on horseback as a Tartar. He was foremost at all races and cock fights; and, with the ascendancy which bodily strength always acquires in rustic life, was the umpire in all disputes, setting his hat on one side, and giving his decisions with an air and tone that admitted of no gainsay or appeal. He was always ready for either a fight or a frolic; but had more mischief than ill-will in his composition; and with all his overbearing roughness, there was a strong dash of waggish good humor at bottom. He had three or four boon companions, who regarded him as their model, and at the head of whom he scoured the country, attending every scene of feud or merriment for miles round. In cold weather he was distinguished by a fur cap, surmounted with a flaunting fox's tail; and when the folks at a country gathering descried this well-known crest at a distance, whisking about among a squad of hard riders, they always stood by for a squall. Sometimes his crew would be heard dashing along past the farmhouses at midnight, with whoop and halloo, like a troop of Don Cossacks; and the old dames, startled out of their sleep, would listen for a moment till the hurry-scurry had clattered by, and then exclaim, "Ay, there goes Brom Bones and his gang!" The neighbors looked upon him with a mixture of awe, admiration, and good-will; and, when any madcap prank or rustic brawl occurred in the vicinity, always shook their heads, and warranted Brom Bones was at the bottom of it. This rantipole hero had for some time singled out the blooming Katrina for the object of his uncouth gallantries, and though his amorous toyings were something like the gentle caresses and endearments ofa bear, yet it was whispered that she did not altogether discourage his hopes. Certain it is, his advances were signals for rival candidates to retire, who felt no inclination to cross a lion 108
in his amours; insomuch, that when his horse was seen tied to Van Tassel's paling, on a Sunday night, a sure sign that his master was courting, or, as it is termed, " sparking," within, all other suitors passed by in despair, and carried the war into other quarters. Such was the formidable rival with whom Ichabod Crane had to contend, and, considering, all things, a stouter man than he would have shrunk from the competition, and a wiser man would have despaired. He had, however, a happy mixture of pliability and perseverance in his nature; he was in form and spirit like a supple-jack-yielding, but tough; though he bent, he never broke; and though he bowed beneath the slightest pressure, yet, the moment it was away--jerk!--he was as erect, and carried his head as high as ever. To have taken the field openly against his rival would have been madness; for he was not a man to be thwarted in his amours, any more than that stormy lover, Achilles. Ichabod, therefore, made his advances in a quiet and gently insinuating manner. Under cover of his character of singing-master, he made frequent visits at the farmhouse; not that he had anything to apprehend from the meddlesome interference of parents, which is so often a stumbling-block in the path of lovers. Balt Van Tassel was an easy indulgent soul; he loved his daughter better even than his pipe, and, like a reasonable man and an excellent father, let her have her way in everything. His notable little wife, too, had enough to do to attend to her housekeeping and manage her poultry; for, as she sagely observed, ducks and geese are foolish things, and must be looked after, but girls can take care of themselves. Thus, while the busy dame bustled about the house, or plied her spinning-wheel at one end of the piazza, honest Balt would sit smoking his evening pipe at the other, watching the achievements of a little wooden warrior, who, armed with a sword in each hand, was most valiantly fighting the wind on the pinnacle of the barn. In the mean time, Ichabod would carry on his suit with the daughter by the side of the spring under the great elm, or sauntering along in the twilight, that hour so favorable to the lover's eloquence. I profess not to know how women's hearts are wooed and won. To me they have always been matters of riddle and admiration. Some seem to have but one vulnerable point, or door of access; while others have a thousand avenues, and may 109
be captured in a thousand different ways. It is a great triumph of skill to gain the former, but a still greater proof of generalship to maintain possession of the latter, for man must battle for his fortress at every door and window. He who wins a thousand common hearts is therefore entitled to some renown; but he who keeps undisputed sway over the heart of a coquette is indeed a hero. Certain it is, this was not the case with the redoubtable Brom Bones; and from the moment Ichabod Crane made his advances, the interests of the former evidently declined: his horse was no longer seen tied to the palings on Sunday nights, and a deadly feud gradually arose between him and the preceptor of Sleepy Hollow. Brom, who had a degree of rough chivalry in his nature, would fain have carried matters to open warfare and have settled their pretensions to the lady, according to the mode of those most concise and simple reasoners, the knights-errant of yore, -- by single combat; but lchabod was too conscious of the superior might of his adversary to enter the lists against him; he had overheard a boast of Bones, that he would "double the schoolmaster up, and lay him on a shelf of his own schoolhouse;" and he was too wary to give him an opportunity. There was something extremely provoking, in this obstinately pacific system; it left Brom no alternative but to draw upon the funds of rustic waggery in his disposition, and to play off boorish practical jokes upon his rival. Ichabod became the object of whimsical persecution to Bones and his gang of rough riders. They harried his hitherto peaceful domains, smoked out his singing- school by stopping up the chimney, broke into the schoolhouse at night, in spite of its formidable fastenings of withe and window stakes, and turned everything topsy-turvy, so that the poor schoolmaster began to think all the witches in the country held their meetings there. But what was still more annoying, Brom took all Opportunities of turning him into ridicule in presence of his mistress, and had a scoundrel dog whom he taught to whine in the most ludicrous manner, and introduced as a rival of Ichabod's, to instruct her in psalmody. In this way matters went on for some time, without producing any material effect on the relative situations of the contending powers. On a fine autumnal afternoon, Ichabod, in pensive mood, sat enthroned on the lofty stool from whence he usually watched all the concerns of his little 110
literary realm. In his hand he swayed a ferule, that sceptre of despotic power; the birch of justice reposed on three nails behind the throne, a constant terror to evil doers, while on the desk before him might be seen sundry contraband articles and prohibited weapons, detected upon the persons of idle urchins, such as half-munched apples, popguns, whirligigs, fly-cages, and whole legions of rampant little paper game-cocks. Apparently there had been some appalling act of justice recently inflicted, for his scholars were all busily intent upon their books, or slyly whispering behind them with one eye kept upon the master; and a kind of buzzing stillness reigned throughout the schoolroom. It was suddenly interrupted by the appearance of a negro in tow-cloth jacket and trowsers. a round-crowned fragment of a hat, like the cap of Mercury, and mounted on the back of a ragged, wild, half-broken colt, which he managed with a rope by way of halter. He came clattering up to the school-door with an invitation to Ichabod to attend a merry - making or "quilting-frolic," to be held that evening at Mynheer Van Tassel's; and having, delivered his message with that air of importance and effort at fine language which a negro is apt to display on petty embassies of the kind, he dashed over the brook, and was seen scampering, away up the Hollow, full of the importance and hurry of his mission. All was now bustle and hubbub in the late quiet schoolroom. The scholars were hurried through their lessons without stopping at trifles; those who were nimble skipped over half with impunity, and those who were tardy had a smart application now and then in the rear, to quicken their speed or help them over a tall word. Books were flung aside without being put away on the shelves, inkstands were overturned, benches thrown down, and the whole school was turned loose an hour before the usual time, bursting forth like a legion of young imps, yelping and racketing about the green in joy at their early emancipation. The gallant Ichabod now spent at least an extra half hour at his toilet, brushing and furbishing up his best, and indeed only suit of rusty black, and arranging his locks by a bit of broken looking-glass that hung up in the schoolhouse. That he might make his appearance before his mistress in the true style of a cavalier, he borrowed a horse from the farmer with whom he was domiciliated, a choleric old Dutchman of the name of Hans 111
Van Ripper, and, thus gallantly mounted, issued forth like a knight- errant in quest of adventures. But it is meet I should, in the true spirit of romantic story, give some account of the looks and equipments of my hero and his steed. The animal he bestrode was a broken-down plow-horse, that had outlived almost everything but its viciousness. He was gaunt and shagged, with a ewe neck, and a head like a hammer; his rusty mane and tail were tangled and knotted with burs; one eye had lost its pupil, and was glaring and spectral, but the other had the gleam of a genuine devil in it. Still he must have had fire and mettle in his day, if we may judge from the name he bore of Gunpowder. He had, in fact, been a favorite steed of his master's, the choleric Van Ripper, who was a furious rider, and had infused, very probably, some of his own spirit into the animal; for, old and broken-down as he looked, there was more of the lurking devil in him than in any young filly in the country. Ichabod was a suitable figure for such a steed . He rode with short stirrups, which brought his knees nearly up to the pommel of the saddle; his sharp elbows stuck out like grasshoppers'; he carried his whip perpendicularly in his hand, like a sceptre, and as his horse jogged on, the motion of his arms was not unlike the flapping of a pair of wings. A small wool hat rested on the top of his nose, for so his scanty strip of forehead might be called, and the skirts of his black coat fluttered out almost to the horses tail. Such was the appearance of Ichabod and his steed as they shambled out of the gate of Hans Van Ripper, and it was altogether such an apparition as is seldom to be met with in broad daylight. It was, as I have said, a fine autumnal day; the sky was clear and serene, and nature wore that rich and golden livery which we always associate with the idea of abundance. The forests had put on their sober brown and yellow, while some trees of the tenderer kind had been nipped by the frosts into brilliant dyes of orange, purple, and scarlet. Streaming files of wild ducks began to make their appearance high in the air; the bark of the squirrel might be heard from the groves of beech and hickory- nuts, and the pensive whistle of the quail at intervals from the neighboring stubble field. The small birds were taking their farewell banquets. In the fullness of their revelry, they fluttered, chirping and frolicking from bush to bush, and tree to tree, capricious from the very 112
profusion and variety around them. There was the honest cockrobin, the favorite game of stripling sportsmen, with its loud querulous note; and the twittering blackbirds flying in sable clouds, and the golden- winged woodpecker with his crimson crest, his broad black gorget, and splendid plumage; and the cedar-bird, with its red tipt wings and yellow-tipt tail and its little monteiro cap of feathers; and the blue jay, that noisy coxcomb, in his gay light blue coat and white underclothes, screaming and chattering, nodding and bobbing and bowing, and pretending to be on good terms with every songster of the grove. As Ichabod jogged slowly on his way, his eye, ever open to every symptom of culinary abundance, ranged with delight over the treasures of jolly autumn. On all sides he beheld vast store of apples: some hanging in oppressive opulence on the trees; some gathered into baskets and barrels for the market; others heaped up in rich piles for the cider-press. Farther on he beheld great fields of Indian corn, with its golden ears peeping from their leafy coverts, and holding out the promise of cakes and hasty- pudding; and the yellow pumpkins lying beneath them, turning up their fair round bellies to the sun, and giving ample prospects of the most luxurious of pies; and anon he passed the fragrant buckwheat fields breathing the odor of the beehive, and as he beheld them, soft anticipations stole over his mind of dainty slap-jacks, well buttered, and garnished with honey or treacle, by the delicate little dimpled hand of Katrina Van Tassel. Thus feeding his mind with many sweet thoughts and "sugared suppositions," he journeyed along the sides of a range of hills which look out upon some of the goodliest scenes of the mighty Hudson. The sun gradually wheeled his broad disk down in the west. The wide bosom of the Tappan Zee lay motionless and glassy, excepting that here and there a gentle undulation waved and prolonged the blue shallow of the distant mountain. A few amber clouds floated in the sky, without a breath of air to move them. The horizon was of a fine golden tint, changing gradually into a pure apple green, and from that into the deep blue of the mid- heaven. A slanting ray lingered on the woody crests of the precipices that overhung some parts of the river, giving greater depth to the dark gray and purple of their rocky sides. A sloop was loitering in the distance, dropping slowly down with the tide, her sail 113
hanging uselessly against the mast; and as the reflection of the sky gleamed along the still water, it seemed as if the vessel was suspended in the air. It was toward evening that Ichabod arrived at the castle of the Heer Van Tassel, which he found thronged with the pride and flower of the adjacent country Old farmers, a spare leathern- faced race, in homespun coats and breeches, blue stockings, huge shoes, and magnificent pewter buckles. Their brisk, withered little dames, in close crimped caps, long waisted short-gowns, homespun petticoats, with scissors and pin-cushions, and gay calico pockets hanging on the outside. Buxom lasses, almost as antiquated as their mothers, excepting where a straw hat, a fine ribbon, or perhaps a white frock, gave symptoms of city innovation. The sons, in short square-skirted coats, with rows of stupendous brass buttons, and their hair generally queued in the fashion of the times, especially if they could procure an eelskin for the purpose, it being esteemed throughout the country as a potent nourisher and strengthener of the hair. Brom Bones, however, was the hero of the scene, having come to the gathering on his favorite steed Daredevil, a creature, like himself, full of mettle and mischief, and which no one but himself could manage. He was, in fact, noted for preferring vicious animals, given to all kinds of tricks which kept the rider in constant risk of his neck, for he held a tractable, wellbroken horse as unworthy of a lad of spirit. Fain would I pause to dwell upon the world of charms that burst upon the enraptured gaze of my hero, as he entered the state parlor of Van Tassel's mansion. Not those of the bevy of buxom lasses, with their luxurious display of red and white; but the ample charms of a genuine Dutch country tea-table, in the sumptuous time of autumn. Such heaped up platters of cakes of various and almost indescribable kinds, known only to experienced Dutch housewives! There was the doughty doughnut, the tender olykoek, and the crisp and crumbling cruller; sweet cakes and short cakes, ginger cakes and honey cakes, and the whole family of cakes. And then there were apple pies, and peach pies, and pumpkin pies; besides slices of ham and smoked beef; and moreover delectable dishes of preserved plums, and peaches, and pears, and quinces; not to mention broiled shad and roasted chickens; together with bowls of milk and cream, 114
all mingled higgledy- pigglely, pretty much as I have enumerated them, with the motherly teapot sending up its clouds of vapor from the midst-Heaven bless the mark! I want breath and time to discuss this banquet as it deserves, and am too eager to get on with my story. Happily, Ichabod Crane was not in so great a hurry as his historian, but did ample justice to every dainty. He was a kind and thankful creature, whose heart dilated in proportion as his skin was filled with good cheer, and whose spirits rose with eating, as some men's do with drink. He could not help, too, rolling his large eyes round him as he ate, and chuckling with the possibility that he might one day be lord of all this scene of almost unimaginable luxury and splendor. Then, he thought, how soon he 'd turn his back upon the old schoolhouse; snap his fingers in the face of Hans Van Ripper, and every other niggardly patron, and kick any itinerant pedagogue out of doors that should dare to call him comrade! Old Baltus Van Tassel moved about among his guests with a face dilated with content and goodhumor, round and jolly as the harvest moon. His hospitable attentions were brief, but expressive, being confined to a shake of the hand, a slap on the shoulder, a loud laugh, and a pressing invitation to "fall to, and help themselves." And now the sound of the music from the common room, or hall, summoned to the dance. The musician was an old gray-headed negro, who had been the itinerant orchestra of the neighborhood for more than half a century. His instrument was as old and battered as himself. The greater part of the time he scraped on two or three strings, accompanying every movement of the bow with a motion of the head; bowing almost to the ground, and stamping with his foot whenever a fresh couple were to start. Ichabod prided himself upon his dancing as much as upon his vocal powers. Not a limb, not a fibre about him was idle; and to have seen his loosely hung frame in full motion, and clattering about the room, you would have thought St. Vitus himself, that blessed patron of the dance, was figuring before you in person. He was the admiration of all the negroes; who, having gathered, of all ages and sizes, from the farm and the neighborhood, stood forming a pyramid of shining black faces at every door and window; gazing with delight at the scene; rolling their white eye-balls, and showing grinning rows of ivory from ear to ear. How could 115
the flogger of urchins be otherwise than animated and joyous? the lady of his heart was his partner in the dance, and smiling graciously in reply to all his amorous oglings; while Brom Bones, sorely smitten with love and jealousy, sat brooding by himself in one corner. When the dance was at an end, Ichabod was attracted to a knot of the sager folks, who, with Old V an Tassel, sat smoking at one end of the piazza, gossiping over former times, and drawing out long stories about the war. This neighborhood, at the time of which I am speaking, was one of those highly favored places which abound with chronicle and great men. The British and American line had run near it during the war; it had, therefore], been the scene of marauding and infested with refugees, cow-boys, and all kinds of border chivalry. Just sufficient time had elapsed to enable each story-teller to dress up his tale with a little becoming fiction, and, in the indistinctness of his recollection, to make himself the hero of every exploit. There was the story of Doffue Martling, a large blue-bearded Dutchman, who had nearly taken a British frigate with an old iron nine-pounder from a mud breastwork, only that his gun burst at the sixth discharge. And there was an old gentleman who shall be nameless, being too rich a mynheer to be lightly mentioned, who, in the battle of White Plains, being an excellent master of defence, parried a musket-ball with a small-sword, insomuch that he absolutely felt it whiz round the blade, and glance off at the hilt; in proof of which he was ready at any time to show the sword, with the hilt a little bent. There were several more that had been equally great in the field, not one of whom but was persuaded that he had a considerable hand in bringing the war to a happy termination. But all these were nothing to the tales of ghosts and apparitions that succeeded. The neighborhood is rich in legendary treasures of the kind. Local tales and superstitions thrive best in these sheltered, long settled retreats; but are trampled under foot by the shifting throng that forms the population of most of our country places. Besides, there is no encouragement for ghosts in most of our villages, for they have scarcely had time to finish their first nap and turn themselves in their graves, before their surviving friends have travelled away from the neighborhood; so that when they turn out at night to walk their rounds, they have no acquaintance left to call upon. This is 116
perhaps the reason why we so seldom hear of ghosts except in our long-established Dutch communities. The immediate cause, however, of the prevalence of supernatural stories in these parts, was doubtless owing to the vicinity of Sleepy Hollow. There was a contagion in the very air that blew from that haunted region; it breathed forth an atmosphere of dreams and fancies infecting all the land. Several of the Sleepy Hollow people were present at Van Tassel's, and, as usual, were doling out their wild and wonderful legends. Many dismal tales were told about funeral trains, and mourning cries and wailings heard and seen about the great tree where the unfortunate Major Andre was taken, and which stood in the neighborhood. Some mention was made also of the woman in white, that haunted the dark glen at Raven Rock, and was often heard to shriek on winter nights before a storm, having perished there in the snow. The chief part of the stories, however, turned upon the favorite spectre of Sleepy Hollow, the Headless Horseman, who had been heard several times of late, patrolling the country; and, it was said, tethered his horse nightly among the graves in the churchyard. The sequestered situation of this church seems always to have made it a favorite haunt of troubled spirits. It stands on a knoll, surrounded by locust, trees and lofty elms, from among which its decent, whitewashed walls shine modestly forth, like Christian purity beaming through the shades of retirement. A gentle slope descends from it to a silver sheet of water, bordered by high trees, between which, peeps may be caught at the blue hills of the Hudson. To look upon its grass-grown yard, where the sunbeams seem to sleep so quietly, one would think that there at least the dead might rest in peace. On one side of the church extends a wide woody dell, along which raves a large brook among broken rocks and trunks of fallen trees. Over a deep black part of the stream, not far from the church, was formerly thrown a wooden bridge; the road that led to it, and the bridge itself, were thickly shaded by overhanging trees, which cast a gloom about it, even in the daytime; but occasioned a fearful darkness at night. Such was one of the favorite haunts of the Headless Horseman, and the place where he was most frequently encountered. The tale was told of old Brouwer, a most heretical disbeliever in ghosts, how he met the Horseman returning from his foray 117
into Sleepy Hollow, and was obliged to get up behind him; how they galloped over bush and brake, over hill and swamp, until they reached the bridge; when the Horseman suddenly turned into a skeleton, threw old Brouwer into the brook, and sprang away over the tree-tops with a clap of thunder. This story was immediately matched by a thrice marvellous adventure of Brom Bones, who made light of the Galloping Hessian as an arrant jockey. He affirmed that on returning one night from the neighboring village of Sing Sing, he had been overtaken by this midnight trooper; that he had offered to race with him for a bowl of punch, and should have won it too, for Daredevil beat the goblin horse all hollow, but just as they came to the church bridge, the Hessian bolted, and vanished in a flash of fire. All these tales, told in that drowsy undertone with which men talk in the dark, the countenances of the listeners only now and then receiving a casual gleam from the glare of a pipe, sank deep in the mind of Ichabod. He repaid them in kind with large extracts from his invaluable author, Cotton Mather, and added many marvellous events that had taken place in his native State of Connecticut, and fearful sights which he had seen in his nightly walks about Sleepy Hollow. The revel now gradually broke up. The old farmers gathered together their families in their wagons, and were heard for some time rattling along the hollow roads, and over the distant hills. Some of the damsels mounted on pillions behind their favorite swains, and their light-hearted laughter, mingling with the clatter of hoofs, echoed along the silent woodlands, sounding fainter and fainter, until they gradually died away, --and the late scene of noise and frolic was all silent and deserted. Ichabod only lingered behind, according to the custom of country lovers, to have a tete-a-tete with the heiress; fully convinced that he was now on the high road to success. What passed at this interview I will not pretend to say, for in fact I do not know. Something, however, I fear me, must have gone wrong, for he certainly sallied forth, after no very great interval, with an air quite desolate and chapfallen. Oh, these women! these women! Could that girl have been playing off any of her coquettish tricks? Was her encouragement of the poor pedagogue all a mere sham to secure her conquest of his rival? Heaven only knows, not I! Let it suffice to say, Ichabod stole forth with the 118
air of one who had been sacking a henroost, rather than a fair lady's heart. Without looking to the right or left to notice the scene of rural wealth, on which he had so often gloated, he went straight to the stable, and with several hearty cuffs and kicks roused his steed most uncourteously from the comfortable quarters in which he was soundly sleeping, dreaming of mountains of corn and oats, and whole valleys of timothy and clover. It was the very witching time of night that Ichabod, heavy hearted and crest-fallen, pursued his travels homewards, along the sides of the lofty hills which rise above Tarry Town, and which he had traversed so cheerily in the afternoon. The hour was as dismal as himself. Far below him the Tappan Zee spread its dusky and indistinct waste of waters, with here and there the tall mast of a sloop, riding quietly at anchor under the land. In the dead hush of midnight, he could even hear the barking of the watchdog from the opposite shore of the Hudson; but it was so vague and faint as only to give an idea of his distance from this faithful companion of man. Now and then, too, the long-drawn crowing of a cock, accidentally awakened, would sound far, far off, from some farmhouse away among the hills--but it was like a dreaming sound in his ear. No signs of life occurred near him, but occasionally the melancholy chirp of a cricket, or perhaps the guttural twang of a bull-frog from a neighboring marsh, as if sleeping uncomfortably and turning suddenly in his bed. All the stories of ghosts and goblins that he had heard in the afternoon now came crowding upon his recollection. The night grew darker and darker; the stars seemed to sink deeper in the sky, and driving clouds occasionally hid them from his sight. He had never felt so lonely and dismal. He was, moreover, approaching the very place where many of the scenes of the ghost stories had been laid. In the centre of the road stood an enormous tulip-tree, which towered like a giant above all the other trees of the neighborhood, and formed a kind of landmark. Its limbs were gnarled and fantastic, large enough to form trunks for ordinary trees, twisting down almost to the earth, and rising again into the air. It was connected with the tragical story of the unfortunate Andre, who had been taken prisoner hard by; and was universally known by the name of Major Andre's tree. The common people regarded it with a mixture of 119
respect and superstition, partly out of sympathy for the fate of its illstarred namesake, and partly from the tales of strange sights, and doleful lamentations, told concerning it. As Ichabod approached this fearful tree, he began to whistle; he thought his whistle was answered; it was but a blast sweeping sharply through the dry branches. As he approached a little nearer, he thought he saw something white, hanging in the midst of the tree: he paused, and ceased whistling but, on looking more narrowly, perceived that it was a place where the tree had been scathed by lightning, and the white wood laid bare. Suddenly he heard a groan--his teeth chattered, and his knees smote against the saddle: it was but the rubbing of one huge bough upon another, as they were swayed about by the breeze. He passed the tree in safety, but new perils lay before him. About two hundred yards from the tree, a small brook crossed the road, and ran into a marshy and thickly-wooded glen, known by the name of Wiley's Swamp. A few rough logs, laid side by side, served for a bridge over this stream. On that side of the road where the brook entered the wood, a group of oaks and chestnuts, matted thick with wild grape-vines, threw a cavernous gloom over it. To pass this bridge was the severest trial. It was at this identical spot that the unfortunate Andre was captured, and under the covert of those chestnuts and vines were the sturdy yeomen concealed who surprised him. This has ever since been considered a haunted stream, and fearful are the feelings of the school-boy who has to pass it alone after dark. As he approached the stream, his heart began to thump he summoned up, however, all his resolution, gave his horse half a score of kicks in the ribs, and attempted to dash briskly across the bridge; but instead of starting forward, the perverse old animal made a lateral movement, and ran broadside against the fence. Ichabod, whose fears increased with the delay, jerked the reins on the other side, and kicked lustily with the contrary foot: it was all in vain; his steed started, it is true, but it was only to plunge to the opposite side of the road into a thicket of brambles and alder-bushes. The schoolmaster now bestowed both whip and heel upon the starveling ribs of old Gunpowder, who dashed forward, snuffling and snorting, but came to a stand just by the bridge, with a suddenness that had nearly sent his 120
rider sprawling over his head. Just at this moment a plashy tramp by the side of the bridge caught the sensitive ear of Ichabod. In the dark shadow of the grove, on the margin of the brook, he beheld something huge, misshapen and towering. It stirred not, but seemed gathered up in the gloom, like some gigantic monster ready to spring upon the traveller. The hair of the affrighted pedagogue rose upon his head with terror. What was to be done? To turn and fly was now too late; and besides, what chance was there of escaping ghost or goblin, if such it was, which could ride upon the wings of the wind? Summoning up, therefore, a show of courage, he demanded in stammering accents, " Who are you?" He received no reply. He repeated his demand in a still more agitated voice. Still there was no answer. Once more he cudgelled the sides of the inflexible Gunpowder, and, shutting his eyes, broke forth with involuntary fervor into a psalm tune. Just then the shadowy object of alarm put itself in motion, and with a scramble and a bound stood at once in the middle of the road. Though the night was dark and dismal, yet the form of the unknown might now in some degree be ascertained. He appeared to be a horseman of large dimensions, and mounted on a black horse of powerful frame. He made no offer of molestation or sociability, but kept aloof on one side of the road, jogging along on the blind side of old Gunpowder, who had now got over his fright and waywardness. Ichabod, who had no relish for this strange midnight companion, and bethought himself of the adventure of Brom Bones with the Galloping Hessian, now quickened his steed in hopes of leaving him behind. The stranger, however, quickened his horse to an equal pace. Ichabod pulled up, and fell into a walk, thinking to lag behind, --the other did the same. His heart began to sink within him; he endeavored to resume his psalm tune, but his parched tongue clove to the roof of his mouth, and he could not utter a stave. There was something in the moody and dogged silence of this pertinacious companion that was mysterious and appalling. It was soon fearfully accounted for. On mounting a rising ground, which brought the figure of his fellow-traveller in relief against the sky, gigantic in height, and muffled in a cloak, Ichabod was horror-struck on perceiving that he was headless! but his horror was still more increased on observing that the head, which should have rested 121
on his shoulders, was carried before him on the pommel of his saddle! His terror rose to desperation; he rained a shower of kicks and blows upon Gunpowder, hoping by a sudden movement to give his companion the slip; but the spectre started full jump with him. Away, then, they dashed through thick and thin; stones flying and sparks flashing at every bound. Ichabod's flimsy garments fluttered in the air, as he stretched his long lank body away over his horse's head, in the eagerness of his flight. They had now reached the road which turns off to Sleepy Hollow; but Gunpowder, who seemed possessed with a demon, instead of keeping up it, made an opposite turn, and plunged headlong down hill to the left. This road leads through a sandy hollow shaded by trees for about a quarter of a mile, where it crosses the bridge famous in goblin story; and just beyond swells the green knoll on which stands the whitewashed church. As yet the panic of the steed had given his unskilful rider an apparent advantage in the chase, but just as he had got half way through the hollow, the girths of the saddle gave way, and he felt it slipping from under him. He seized it by the pommel, and endeavored to hold it firm, but in vain; and had just time to save himself by clasping old Gunpowder round the neck, when the saddle fell to the earth, and he heard it trampled under foot by his pursuer. For a moment the terror of Hans Van Ripper's wrath passed across his mind, --for it was his Sunday saddle; but this was no time for petty fears; the goblin was hard on his haunches; and (unskilful rider that he was!) he had much ado to maintain his seat; sometimes slipping on one side, sometimes on another, and sometimes jolted on the high ridge of his horse's backbone, with a violence that he verily feared would cleave him asunder. An opening, in the trees now cheered him with the hopes that the church bridge was at hand. The wavering reflection of a silver star in the bosom of the brook told him that he was not mistaken. He saw the walls of the church dimly glaring under the trees beyond. He recollected the place where Brom Bones' ghostly competitor had disappeard. "If I can but reach that bridge," thought Ichabod, " I am safe." Just then he heard the black steed panting and blowing close behind him; he even fancied that he felt his hot breath. Another convulsive kick in the ribs, and old Gunpowder sprang upon the bridge; he thundered over the resounding planks; he 122
gained the opposite side; and now Ichabod cast a look behind to see if his pursuer should vanish, according to rule, in a flash of fire and brimstone. Just then he saw the goblin rising in his stirrups, and in the very act of hurling his head at him. Ichabod endeavored to dodge the horrible missile, but too late. It encountered his cranium with a tremendous crash, --he was tumbled headlong into the dust, and Gunpowder, the black steed, and the goblin rider, passed by like a whirlwind. The next morning the old horse was found without his saddle, and with the bridle under his feet, soberly cropping the grass at his master's gate. Ichabod did not make his appearance at breakfast; dinner-hour came, but no Ichabod. The boys assembled at the schoolhouse, and strolled idly about the banks of the brook; but no schoolmaster. Hans Van Ripper now began to feel some uneasiness about the fate of poor Ichabod, and his saddle. An inquiry was set on foot, and after diligent investigation they came upon his traces. In one part of the road leading to the church was found the saddle trampled in the dirt; the tracks of horses' hoofs deeply dented in the road, and evidently at furious speed, were traced to the bridge, beyond which, on the bank of a broad part oÂŁ the brook, where the water ran deep and black, was found the hat of the unfortunate Ichabod, and close beside it a shattered pumpkin. The brook was searched, but the body of the schoolmaster was not to be discovered. Hans Van Ripper as executor of his estate, examined the bundle which contained all his worldly effects. They consisted of two shirts and a half; two stocks for the neck; a pair or two of worsted stockings; an old pair of corduroy small- clothes; a rusty razor; a book of psalm tunes full of dog's-ears; and a broken pitch-pipe. As to the books and furniture of the schoolhouse, they belonged to the community, excepting Cotton Mather's History of Witchcraft, a New England Almanac, and book of dreams and fortune-telling; in which last was a sheet of foolscap much scribbled and blotted in several fruitless attempts to make a copy of verses in honor of the heiress of Van Tassel. These magic books and the poetic scrawl were forthwith consigned to the flames by Hans Van Ripper; who, from that time forward, determined to send his children no more to school; observing that he never knew any good come of this same reading and writing. Whatever money the 123
schoolmaster possessed, and he had received his quarter's pay but a day or two before, he must have had about his person at the time of his disappearance. The mysterious event caused much speculation at the church on the following Sunday. Knots of gazers and gossips were collected in the churchyard, at the bridge, and at the spot where the hat and pumpkin had been found. The stories of Brouwer, of Bones, and a whole budget of others were called to mind; and when they had diligently considered them all, and compared them with the symptoms of the present case, they shook their heads, and came to the conclusion chat Ichabod had been carried off by the Galloping Hessian. As he was a bachelor, and in nobody's debt, nobody troubled his head any more about him; the school was removed to a different quarter of the Hollow, and another pedagogue reigned in his stead. It is true, an old farmer, who had been down to New York on a visit several years after, and from whom this account of the ghostly adventure was received, brought home the intelligence that Ichabod Crane was still alive; that he had left the neighborhood partly through fear of the goblin and Hans Van Ripper, and partly in mortification at having been suddenly dismissed by the heiress; that he had changed his quarters to a distant part of the country; had kept school and studied law at the same time; had been admitted to the bar; turned politician; electioneered; written for the newspapers; and finally had been made a justice of the ten pound court. Brom Bones, too, who, shortly after his rival's disappearance conducted the blooming Katrina in triumph to the altar, was observed to look exceedingly knowing whenever the story of Ichabod was related, and always burst into a hearty laugh at the mention of the pumpkin; which led some to suspect that he knew more about the matter than he chose to tell. The old country wives, however, who are the best judges of these matters, maintain to this day that Ichabod was spirited away by supernatural means; and it is a favorite story often told about the neighborhood round the winter evening fire. The bridge became more than ever an object of superstitious awe; and that may be the reason why the road has been altered of late years, so as to approach the church by the border of the mill-pond. The schoolhouse being deserted soon fell to decay, and was reported to be haunted by the 124
ghost of the unfortunate pedagogue and the plough-boy, loitering homeward of a still summer evening, has often fancied his voice at a distance, chanting a melancholy psalm tune among the tranquil solitudes of Sleepy Hollow.
Emotional Abusers by Natalie P. http://www.heartless-bitches.com/rants/manipulator/emotional_abuse.shtml
Most people have had it happen: at some point in our lives we find ourselves manipulated or "guilted" into doing something we didn't want to do. We end up angry at ourselves for caving in, and resenting the other person for pressuring us. However there are other kinds of emotional manipulation - covert abusive and hurtful techniques that even the most stalwart Heartless Bitch can fall prey to, that undermine a person's self-confidence, and may even make you feel like you are going crazy. The thing is, while true Heartless Bitches would NEVER tolerate physical abuse, they can get blindsided by emotional abuse, and not even realize it's happening - especially if it is coming from someone they trust and love. Like physical abuse, emotional abuse becomes a vicious circle that chips away at your self-confidence, making it harder and harder to leave. If you are in a relationship where you have a sick sense that SOMETHING is 126
wrong, but somehow it's always YOUR fault, and you find yourself always tring to "fix" things, this article may be for you. Emotional abusers are very insidious - some of them are much harder to spot than others, because they mingle their abuse in between acts of generosity, and often employ emotionally manipulative tactics, and passive-aggressive behavior. Not all emotional abusers overtly belittle and verbally harangue their partners - some are much more perfidious and as such, their partners may not realize that the source of their distress and an unease over the relationship has been coming from abuse for quite some time. The longer a woman remains under the grip of an emotional abuser, the more she will start to question herself, her actions and her beliefs. It is the abuser's goal to make her believe that she deserves his cruelty and that only through her actions can she make it stop. It is his intent to get her to feel that she is the cause of any relationship problems, and that his (abusive) behavior is simply a response to her, and therefore acceptable. It is true, that only through her actions can she make it stop she must have the courage to leave the relationship and avoid further contact with the abuser. Abusers, physical or emotional, are abusive because of their own self-hate and internal issues - not because of anything their partner did. No amount of work or attempting to please will stop an abuser from abusing. They have to be willing to recognize and actually work on their own issues before they can stop inflicting cruelty on the people who love them. In many cases, they don't even love their partners, because they can't even love themselves, and don't feel that they deserve love, even though they crave it. Abusers may genuinely feel bad that they committed another act of abuse, not because they have any real compassion for the person they hurt, but because they get angry at themselves for "screwing up" again. This drives them further into self-loathing, and further into a cycle of abusive behavior. It is common for men who are "called" on their abusive behavior to blame the woman, and claim SHE was the abuser. He may even point to his abusive childhood as proof that he is just an innocent victim. The truth of the matter is that abusers generally DO have a history of abuse stemming 127
from their childhood, with emotionally abusive and/or physically abusive parents. However, it is important to note that though women can become abusers, MOST OFTEN (because of the way we are socialized and the power setups in society), if there has been no *successful* therapeutic intervention, MEN from abusive families become "ABUSERS", and WOMEN who grew up in abusive families become "Abuse VICTIMS". Like the alcoholic, an abuser must admit his behavior to himself and others, and seek help. Unfortunately, not all therapy works, and not all people who go into therapy are ready or willing to do the personal work necessary to get better and eliminate their destructive patterns. As such, abusers are not safe people - even after they enter therapy. It can take years of therapy to unravel and undo the damage and self-hate that has driven someone to abuse. During that time, the abuser may actually get worse before his behavior improves, if it changes at all. It is quite common for deeply disturbed people who enter therapy to initially use the therapy to project their problems on everyone else and point out the character flaws of those around them, rather than face their own internal demons. Until they can be honest with themselves and the therapist, the therapy will accomplish nothing. For a person who has spent a lifetime of lying and hating themselves, honesty does not come easily. More disturbingly, some abusers can and DO go into therapy as a ploy - to make it LOOK like they are actually working on their own behavior, and accepting responsibility for their actions, when, in fact, the real motive is to arm themselves with distortions of the therapist's words and tools, in an effort to heighten and increase the psychological warfare. The bottom line, is that you can't trust an abuser, the same way you can't trust the married man who is having an affair and keeps promising to leave his wife. The more subtle forms of emotional abuse can be the hardest to escape from, because the gaps between the loving, caring behavior and the emotional cruelty can span several weeks or months. However, someone who is nice and caring, and helpful for 2 or 3 months at a time, but then deliberately does or says something very emotionally devastating and cruel to a partner is no better than someone who does the same nice things but then PUNCHES his partner once every few months. The pain, 128
the insecurity, the uncertainty, and the heartache are the same. The bruises and the welts are on the inside instead of the outside, and they take far longer to heal. While someone may be emotionally blindsided by major episodes of emotional cruelty, and may even recognize it as abuse, abused partners often "overlook" the subtle everyday criticisms, "chain yanking", and emotional blackmail that are woven into the fabric of their relationship, accepting (or denying) it as just part of a "relationship". Unfortunately, it's part of a very UNHEALTHY relationship. It can leave the woman wondering if the pain is worth the good times, and even wondering if this is as good as it gets? What if there isn't anything better? When he distorts the past and blames you for the relationship problems, you may even feel like you are going crazy, and he will certainly do everything he can to imply that you ARE. The truth is, there IS something better. You don't have to put up with a relationship where you are treated poorly, with disrespect, or emotional cruelty, no matter how infrequent those acts are. And of course, when you do get upset, the abuser will infer that you are overreacting, or "too sensitive", so it adds to the confusion and hurt that you may feel. What are the signs and symptoms of Emotional Abuse? A common misconception is that emotional abuse has to take the form of a partner yelling over every little thing, belittling or constantly criticizing a partner. Other forms of emotional abuse, can however, be just as damaging, and far less overt. They can include being disrespectful, discourteous, rude, condescending, patronizing, critical, judgemental, "joking" insults, lying, repeatedly "forgetting" promises and agreements, betrayal of trust, "setting you up", and "revising" history. To outsiders, abusers often appear as decent, successful, sensitive, calm and nondescript. To their families, they are often controlling, self-absorbed, hypercritical, compulsive, childish and mean-spirited. Most of abusers are actually BOTH. It is the disparity between the one they love and the one that harms them that keeps the woman confused. He may intersperse episodes of abuse with words of love, telling her that she is "the best thing that has ever happened" to him, and that he wants to start treating her that way, confusing her further. She keeps hoping that if she 129
does enough, if she gives enough, he will stop hurting her and the loving, caring side of him will prevail. Unfortunately, this is a fallacy that often keeps the woman in the relationship for far too long. Ask yourself: Do you have a drawer full of "apology" jewellery, or a closet full of "apology" clothes? One of the most difficult things about identifying and leaving someone who is a psychological and emotional abuser, is that the REALLY successful abusers are highly intelligent and hide their abuse incredibly well. They may have shelves of filled with psychology books; many are well-read and very well spoken. They know how to twist and manipulate language and people. They present an exterior of calm, rational self-control, when in reality, they have no internal control of their own pain and chaotic self-hate, so they try to control others, and drive others to LOSE control. If an abuser can cause YOU to lose control, it proves how healthy HE is, so he can say, explicitly, or implicitly (it's amazing how sighs, and rolling of the eyes can accomplish as much as words), "There you go again, losing it, crying and yelling. I'm not the one who needs therapy, *you* are." Unfortunately, if an outsider sees the abuse at all, all they see is an outburst from you, NOT the abuse that triggered it. It may make you feel as if you have had all your lifelines withdrawn, as if you are going crazy, because nobody believes you that this charming, "nice", helpful, successful man could be so incredibly psychologically cruel and deliberately hurtful. Abusers play the pushme-pull-you game threatening to withdraw their affections, dropping statements out of the blue intended to destabilize. This has the effect of making their partners insecure and uncertain, but that plays right into the abuser's hand as he then can accuse the partner of being "too needy". Ploys such as casually talking about how he's thinking of taking a job in another city are one such example of destabilizing talk. In this kind of case, it doesn't start with any discussion of your relationship, or what might happen to it - he talks only of the cool job opportunity, with no recognition of the impact it might have on you, your relationship, or your family. An emotional abuser may make fun of his partner, or make subtle or 130
not-so-subtle disparaging remarks about her while with other friends, and encourage the friends to make disparaging remarks. He will then be sure to tell her about the jokes they made and act surprised when she doesn't find them "funny". He may even tell her that she is overreacting and that it was "all in fun" and that no harm was meant by the "joking". Not all emotional abusers criticize their partners directly - sometimes it can be as simple as constantly criticizing how someone keeps a kitchen, or complaining about the mess in the house, or continuous grumbling about the laundry, or complaining about the noise and mess the kids make. He will make her think it is her job to keep him happy, and imply that household things are contributing to his unhappiness and bad temper. An emotional abuser will seem to encourage his partner to grow, to develop new skills and expand her horizons, but then will do things to impede or prevent that progress. He will mope and sigh about how little time she has for him now that she is working more or taking that course, or back in school. Or, he will "encourage" her to advance herself, but refuse to provide any additional assistance around the house/family to ease her workload, effectively making it impossible for her to take that course or job. If he DOES provide assistance, he will let her know how HARD it is for him, and how MUCH he is doing for her, every step of the way... he will play the "sad puppy" to the hilt, trying to get her to feel guilty for the burdens she has put on him. An Emotional abuser will try to make his partner responsible for his happiness. Either through direct comments, or indirect implications, the abuser will let his partner know that he is not happy, that it is somehow her fault, and that she must fix it. The problem is, no matter what she does, it will never be enough, and it won't ultimately make him happy. The abuser may take this behavior to an extreme, insisting that he is the best partner or relationship she will ever have, the only one who can truly love her (despite all her faults!), and that if she doesn't live up to his expectations, he will leave the relationship. Since abuse is really about control, the abuser knows he can have the upper hand in the relationship if he can keep her uncertain and insecure. Emotional abusers overcompensate for their self-hate with a warped kind 131
of narcissism. They genuinely believe that YOU SHOULD know how they feel, and know what to do to make them happy. AND that you should be willing to do those things without having to be asked or told. They believe that they DESERVE to be treated better, to be put first, to be given preferential treatment. He will expect you to read his mind. He lives by the "if you really loved me, you'd KNOW how I feel" game, and of course will punish you for not being telepathic. If confronted with the unreasonable nature of this behavior, the abuser will blame his partner for his lack of communication - it will always be her fault that he couldn't tell her what he needed or wanted. He will project HIS behavior on her, and insist that he couldn't talk to her about what was bothering him because she was too intense, or critical, or angry, or judgemental, or needy. Don't buy it. Those are HIS issues. Not yours. And speaking of narcissism, the emotional abuser will be envious and resentful if YOU get more attention than HE does in a social setting. He will likely punish you for it by one of any number of techniques: ignoring you, sulking, disappearing for hours, flirting heavily with someone else, or leaving the party or function without notifying you. Emotional abusers expect the rest of the household to live by their waking, sleeping and eating schedules. If his schedule is interrupted or disturbed, or if the partner chooses not to follow the same patterns, the abuser feels justified in "punishing" the offender. This can include the full battery of emotional abuse and passive-aggressive tactics - because in the abuser's mind, the partner or household member "deserves" it for not caring enough about him to live by his schedules and activity calendar. Emotional abusers may use punishment tactics like leaving (without a word to you), a party or function that you both went to. They will have socially plausible, pathos-laden excuses for their unannounced departure, like they couldn't find you, or they were tired and wanted to go home. However, the REAL reason they left without a word, was to punish you; to wind you up, to get you worried about them, and ultimately, to have you feel guilty for not paying enough attention to them. When you confront an abuser on the concept of COURTESY around these sorts of things, the abuser will either apologize weakly, (but the damage has been done), or insist that your 132
distress over his behavior is overreacting. Emotional abusers will remind you of your flaws under the guise of trying to be "helpful" or sensitive. He may make comments like, "You seem unhappy with your body" - even though you have made no comments about your body image or otherwise, or "You are running late again - you never can get anywhere on time", or "There doesn't seem to be much point in planning things with you." All are comments intended to unbalance and remind you of what he perceives to be your weaknesses. Emotional abusers will try to isolate you from family and friends. There are several tactics that may be employed. If he can't manipulate your friends, he will either find reasons to denigrate them or will be "uninterested" in doing things with you AND your friends. He may find them "boring". You may find yourself caught in a double-bind where he "encourages" you to go out with *your* friends, refusing any invitation to participate, but then mopes that you never spend enough time with HIM. Over time, you may find yourself isolated from your friends by virtue of the demands on your time that he makes. You may also find him VERY upset if he finds out that you have been talking to a close friend or family member about him and/or your relationship with him - especially if that person is likely to tell you he's behaving like an ass. One emotional abuser went so far as to "set up" his wife so that she would isolate herself. He did it by "reminding" her of her "shyness", and how socially backward she was. He did this under the guise of "being sensitive" to her and the areas she "needed to work on". Then he would offer to "help" her by suggesting she come along to a party or social function with him. Prior to the function he would again "help" her by briefing her on people attending the party, so that she could "have something to talk about" with them. As part of his tactic, he told his wife distortions or half-truths so that she would make social faux-pas at the function. If she ever questioned him, he would insist that SHE must have heard him wrong, and it must have been HER nervousness that made her forget or screw up. The man was a "pillar of the community", so to his friends, she looked like a bumbling (and even insensitive) fool, and they "couldn't figure out why a man like him was with a woman like HER." Combined with his 133
subtle denigration of her friends and family, she gradually isolated herself by not attending social functions, and cutting off relationships with her support network. Instead of "lying" to a partner, an emotional abuser may "forget" significant promises he made to his partner - especially if forgetting that promise will hurt her. He may also "forget" things so that he can let her know that things that are important to her are NOT important to him. This tactic can take the form of making a special dinner for her, containing shrimp when he has known for years that she is allergic to shellfish, so she can't eat it, or buying a feather comforter for their bed, when he knows she is allergic to feathers. He will claim that his lapse was due to "forgetting", when in fact, it was a passive-aggressive ploy to trick the partner into believing he was doing "something nice", get her hopes up, and then bring her down with the fact that she could not enjoy this "gift" of his after all... It is a passive-aggressive slap-in-the-face. Emotional abusers expect more from their partners than they are willing to put into a relationship. The problem is, no matter how much the partner gives, it will never be enough, and the abuser will expect more - because the relationship isn't about love for the abuser, it's about control. The more independent a partner becomes, the more abusive the abuser will be, because he sees he is losing control of his partner. Emotional abusers expect to be forgiven for their "mistakes" (otherwise known as abuse) but are unable to forgive their partners for legitimate mistakes - and will continue to "punish" their partners for those mistakes, long after apologies and restitution have been made. Emotional abusers expect their partners to change for them. Unfortunately, the changes the partner makes will never be enough - the abuser will always want more. The abuser says it's not completely his fault, or she pushes his buttons, or that something she did triggered him to do or say something hurtful or damaging to her. Emotional abuse can take the form of him insisting that she isn't spending enough time with him, forcing her to "prove her love" by booking extra time and adjusting her life and her schedule around him, so that he can 134
then reject any suggestions she has for activities, and act disinterested when they do have time together. When she tries to make plans with him, the abuser will remind her in a condescending way of how poor she is at planning and how he doesn't believe that the plans will work out. Over time, comments like this insidiously undermine her self-confidence, by telling repeatedly that she is untrustworthy. Her untrustworthiness becomes yet another excuse for him to "punish" her with abusive language or actions. Another emotional abuse tactic is to reject activities that she suggests and then do them with other people - letting her know that he is doing them with other people - establishing control and implying that she is not worthy of doing the activities with him, but other people are. An emotional abuser will often use condescension as an effective tool in manipulating and hurting his partner. In expressing his own internal anger, he targets his partner. But because she has done nothing to "deserve" his anger at this point (or any point!), he may be rude, brutally inconsiderate, condescending, patronizing, or even use the "silent treatment" to get her upset or angry. When his partner gets upset, and an argument ensues, he can then express his anger at her, and blame the fact that she "got angry" at him, for the whole argument - even though HE started it. Don't let him convince you that your anger at his disrespect and emotional cruelty, is somehow wrong or abusive to him. That is part of his control and escalating cycle of abuse technique. As part of this "control" technique, the abuser may "set up" his partner, pushing as many buttons as possible to get the partner to lose control by breaking down in tears or getting angry or yelling. If you raise your voice, he will insist that YOU are the abuser. Don't buy it, and don't believe it. While there might be better ways to handle the situation, (more easily enacted if you weren't emotionally involved with this person), chances are that he has inflicted so much psychological warfare that you have been backed into an emotional corner, and are reacting in self-defense. Emotional reactions in self-defense to an abusive situation do NOT make YOU an "abuser". One of the more subtle but effective ways an abuser can "wind" his partner 135
up is by invalidating/rejecting/showing no compassion for the feelings of his partner - especially in conjunction with a deliberate act of malice that was designed to upset or hurt the partner. He will claim the act was either "accidental" or intended to help the partner. He will try to tell his partner that it is NOT OK to feel angry or hurt or upset by his actions - or that if she DOES feel those things, her "feelings are her own" - that he has no responsibility towards repairing any emotional damage he may have caused. As part of this tactic he may pay lip-service to personal responsibility by saying he "takes responsibility" for his actions, but then make no offer to do anything about the resulting emotional pain, or say that there is nothing he can do to repair the damage or make restitution. If she tries to get him to do anything to make restitution he will use the word "blame" as if it is a dirty word, and accuse her of trying to lay "blame" on him for his actions. This is the functional equivalent of someone using a board to "fan" you and when he "accidentally" hits you over the head, telling you that he was just trying to HELP and that if you feel PAIN, well, your feelings are your own, and he can't be responsible for YOUR feelings, and there is nothing HE can do about it now... Non-abusers who genuinely ACCIDENTALLY hurt a loved one's feelings, do not refuse to nurture those feelings - they help repair the emotional damage, and they don't repeatedly make the same "mistakes" over and over with their partners. The flip side of this, of course, is that emotional abusers want to reap the emotional rewards for being nice and doing "good" things for their partners - they want the affirmation, appreciation and attention they feel they deserve when they do something positive for a partner. The truth about responsibility for one's feelings is that if you love and trust someone - if you open your heart to the love and caring, you also open it to the potential for hurt. Yes, in the strictest sense of the word, no one can make you feel anything - you choose to let them affect you for good or bad. But very few people, (except perhaps those with borderline personality disorder), can be completely "unfeeling" when dealing with someone they care deeply for. Most people are unable to open their hearts up completely to love and be able to "let" only good things affect their feelings and not the bad. To disconnect yourself from feeling hurt 136
and pain is to disconnect yourself from feeling love and joy. When you open your heart to someone, you are granting them your trust as well as your love. You are trusting them to respect and honor your love. If someone abuses you by violating your trust, you are not wrong for trusting - THEY are wrong for breaking that trust and using it to hurt you. Emotional abusers have huge double standards. What is ok for them, is NOT ok for their partners. I.e. THEY are allowed to get angry - their partners are not. Abusers will blame their partner for "allowing" or encouraging them to be abusive. In as much as a refusal to capitulate can trigger an abusive attack, any sign of "guilty" feelings or weakness in a partner is like blood in the water for sharks, when it comes to abusers. Of course, according to the abuser, it is up to the woman not to provide him with the temptation to abuse, by changing HER behavior. If caught in a lie or exposed in a situation where he can't immediately manipulate his partner into taking the rap, he may try to go for the sympathy ploy, in an attempt deflect the situation away from his bad behavior. For example, one abuser caught in the middle of a lie, blamed his lie on "bad memory", almost started crying, and began bemoaning what he would do if his memory was going, because his whole job depended on being able to remember lots of details. All of a sudden, the situation turned from him being caught in a lie, to his partner being expected to feel sorry for him because of his "bad memory"... Other deflection techniques he may use when his behavior is exposed, are: -to bring up stories of childhood/parental abuse (watch these, they are the same old stories each time, and if you listen closely, you may see that his behaviors closely match those childhood abuse patterns...) -to bring up troubles and things bothering him at work -to bring up his hurt and "pain" over something YOU did ages ago, and have long-since paid for. -"missing" a grown child who has left the home, or children he abandoned and his former partner "won't let him" visit (big wonder why...). If you DO manage to get an abuser to a relationship counsellor, 137
(something many abusers will insist you two don't need - he'll insist that you "can work things out yourselves..."), the abuser will work to ensure that the counsellor sees HIM as the mistreated partner, or at the very least, that his behaviors are one-time incidents rooted in just cause. These kinds of emotional abusers are often highly intelligent and manipulative. They will manipulate and lie to the counsellor, pinning the onus back on YOU to change your behavior for HIM. You may find it very frustrating and difficult. Even if he can't avoid having his trust-breaking behavior exposed, he may find a way to manipulate the situation so that his "reasons" for breaking trust were because of YOUR inability to meet his needs. Beware. Sometimes counsellors buy into that stuff, and you end up getting a double-whammy. Emotional abusers will hide their abuse in acts that they can claim were done to "try and help" their partner. For example, taking a partner's kids away camping for the weekend, ostensibly, "to give her some time off", but without phoning and checking with her first, "forgetting" she had made plans with them already, and deliberately making sure the kids didn't have time to pack up and be properly equipped. This is designed to get her upset, but have it look like, on the surface, he was "just trying to be helpful and she got upset at me." Similarly, an abuser might do some of your laundry "as a favor" to you, without your asking, and then shrink or stain your clothes. When you get upset about the fact that not only did he do this without asking, but it caused damage, an abuser will imply that your anger is invalid and unwarranted, that you are ungrateful, (he was just trying to help!), and that there is nothing he can do about it now. The abuser learns and goes for the most sensitive "buttons" on his partner, so that he can get a response out of her. The abuser seeks ways to violate her boundaries through calculated "acts of kindness", and may resort to using her children, her personal belongings, her friends, or her personal space as tools. In addition to favors which cause damage, the emotional abuser may do legitimately helpful "favors" for his partner, but again, ones that the partner never asked for. The problem is that the abuser never gives freely or unconditionally. He expects some kind of recompense in return, often 138
without stating what that expectation is. This then gives him another opportunity to feel justified in punishing his partner when she doesn't live up to his unstated expectations of gratitude and reciprocation. When his partner stands up for herself, you may hear him using phrases like, "everything I did, I did for her", and "after all I did for her, THIS is how she treats me!". Abusers will often complain (especially to others outside the relationship) about how unappreciated they are/were, and how they gave and gave and gave, and got so little in return... Another destabilizing tactic that the abuser may use is to reneg on a commitment, or on a stated belief, catching you off-guard, possibly even putting you in a position where he can accuse you of "hurting" him because you didn't know his beliefs/principles/goals had changed. He will use the excuse that he "changed his mind" as a tool for keeping you off-balance. If you question his about-face, he will accuse you of not allowing him the right to change his mind. While people legitimately DO change their minds about things, abusers will do it often, and without warning, with maximum rug-yanking effect for their partners. Emotional abusers will use the "mind change" tactic to set a partner up in a no-win situation. No matter what the partner does, the abuser will find a way to find fault with it - if the cat craps on his bed and she doesn't clean it up, she is uncaring and selfish. If she DOES clean it up, then she was invading his personal space. Emotional abusers encourage their partners to do "self-indulgent" things that the abuser will later resent them for. It may be as simple as encouraging her to go out dancing with her friends, or to go visit her mother, or it may be as serious as encouraging her to take a job or go back to school. In many cases, his "encouragement" is part of the "if she really loves me" test - if she does what he encourages her to do, she is diverting her attention from him, and he will feel justified in hurting her as a result. Once someone starts to detach from an abuser and refuses to play the games, he may go for the sympathy ploy. If his partner doesn't capitulate and refuses to pander to his emotional blackmail, she will be accused of being cold and heartless, in the hopes that THIS escalation of emotional 139
blackmail will hurt her further. Emotional abusers often display different personalities to other people in their lives - watch for a completely changed demeanor, behavior, body language and even tone of voice, when they are at work, or with a circle of friends. The abuser may claim that this is just different "facets" of his personality, but in fact, it is a warning sign that he puts on different personas to suit the situation, and you will never know which one is the REAL person. It belies huge insecurities - the way children try to act like the crowd they are with in order to be accepted - and is an indication of the emotional immaturity of the typical abuser. Emotional abusers, like physical abusers, can be exceedingly charming -that's why it's so hard for the victim of abuse - their friends only see the charming side, and don't see the discourtesy, lies, meanness, condescension and rudeness that happens inside the relationship. Because abuse is about power and control, the abuser will often try to become "buddies" or friends with his partner's closest friends. If her female friends are attracted to him at all, he may even try to prey on that, so that if she has a conflict or a problem with him, she doesn't have a close supportive friend to turn to. Abusers will use things like stories of childhood abuse or trauma, lost friends or the death of relatives to get her friends to feel sorry for him. He will play up the "sensitive guy" role. If he can cozy up to her best friend, the friend will feel caught in the middle which is exactly what the abuser wants - to cut off his partner from external support. If he can, he may even flirt heavily with her friends, have an affair with one of her friends, or become pals with one or more of her former friends as another way to hurt and attempt to shame her. As much as possible, he will perpetrate this behavior in front of his partner, so that he is exhibiting his control - going for maximum hurt to her through a blatant display of compassionless disrespect. The emotional abuser often plays pushme-pullyou. He will indicate that his interest in his partner is waning, and when she begins to start separating from him, he will become attentive and interested again. He may even use sex as a weapon against her - by telling her that she isn't paying enough attention to him, spending enough time with him, or isn't initiating sex 140
enough, but then will reject her advances when she tries to initiate. Abusers are completely self-centered. They blame other people and seldom take responsibility for their own actions. Abusers are self-righteous. They find ways to justify their behavior. As a result, he always focuses on her problems, and insists that she change to make the relationship better. Emotional abusers hate apologizing - and if they DO apologize, they will only do the same thing again. They know this, and will even try to make it seem like any expectation of an apology is really an attempt to "blame" them. (Again, "blame" being that dirty word). For example, "You just want me to say I'm sorry and promise I'll never do it again, so that when I screw up again, you can point a finger and blame me and get angry with me and say, "See? You did it again and you promised you wouldn't!"" This is called "projection" - abusers do it all the time. They project THEIR issues onto their partner, and try to make it their partner's problem. They make it sound like the partner's is somehow wrong or attempting to set them up for "blame", for wanting some sign of compassion and remorse, and an indication of willingness to work on the behavior problem. If you do get an apology out of an abuser, it is a quick-fix, not a long-term solution, because they will do the same behavior over again - that is why they are often so resistant to apologizing and saying that they will work on the behavior - because they KNOW they will repeat it at another time. Abusers may, early in the relationship, in a moment of "opening up", tell you of their abusive or manipulative nature. At the time you may think that this is some kind of indication of a willingness to work on their past problems, or that somehow it will be different for you. In fact, what they are looking for is absolution in advance for behavior they will later inflict on you. They may even go so far as to say, "I told you this is how I am." Emotional abusers often grow OLD without growing UP. They are emotionally stunted and immature. Emotional abusers are self-preoccupied, and demonstrate a passive-aggressive interpersonal style. Emotional abusers may do seemingly loving, kind and considerate things, that actually convey a subtle message that you aren't "perfect", that you 141
aren't quite good enough. For example, it may seem very sweet that he rubs cream into your hands before bed, but then you remember that he also didn't like you touching him if your hands were the least bit dry or rough - it "hurt" his skin, so you always had to have hand cream to make your hands soft before you touched him. Sadly, the REAL message behind the seemingly loving act of rubbing cream in your hands is that you aren't perfect, you aren't living up to his needs and expectations, NOT that he loves you... In their own subversive way, these "messages", couched in "loving" acts, eat away and erode your sense of self-worth. Emotional abusers deny that they have any problems and/or project their problems onto their partner, often accusing their partners of abuse especially AFTER the partner has woken up and called the abuser on his behavior. At this point he will be sure to tell as many *mutual* friends as will listen, that she is controlling and abusive to him, in an attempt to further undermine any support she might get. In order to gain sympathy, the abuser will share convincing stories of his burdens, including stories of how he was abused as a child, or how he witnessed his mother being assaulted by his father. An emotional abuser demonstrates little capacity to appreciate the perspective of another person when his own interests are at stake. Emotional abusers often flip between being a martyr and a self-absorbed asshole - there is no middle ground, and they use the martyrdom as an excuse for their behavior when they are in self-absorbed asshole mode ("I was just doing something for *me*. I'm tired of you making me feel bad about myself."). However, that "something" often winds up breaking a relationship agreement, a promise, or involves him being condescending, ignoring, or rude. An emotional abuser sees himself as a blameless victim, and denies his own provocative behavior, even going so far as to bemoan the fact that a partner left him, or threw him out, "after all the things I did for her"... The emotional abuser will play up the "pathos" in an attempt to garner sympathy, all the while, continuing to stalk his ex, making jokes about things he could do to upset her, and invading her personal space and boundaries at social functions. 142
Like physical abusers, emotional abusers will often stalk their former partners. The stalker's objective is often to control her through cultivating fear rather than making direct or specific threats, or confronting the her. Sometimes this stalking can take the form of simply moving into the same neighborhood as a former partner, and letting her know, through friends, where he is living. His move into her neighborhood will be "justified" by him for some specious reason, but the reality is, he can't let go and is still trying to control her and inflict pain on her after the relationship is over. This is a subtle form of terrorism, because abuse victims are often very emotionally (if not physically) afraid of their abusers once they wake up. She will know that she might run into him at the local convenience store, gas station, supermarket, or on a walk. He is, in effect, pissing on her boundaries (something abusers have no respect for) and trying to make them his own. He may even begin dating someone who lives very close to her, so that he has an excuse to go by her house, or park his car nearby. Ex-partners of abusers will often express fear of their abuser, and will have no desire to be anywhere near the abuser. On the other hand, the abuser may try to appear as if he is calm, rational, and still supportive of his ex-partner, despite the fact that he will also express the opinion that he believes she is quite unstable. He will make statements such as saying that he "bears her no ill-will", etc., but then will show no respect for her boundaries or her requests for him to stay away from her. The abuser will still inquire with friends as to how she is doing, implying that his inquiry is because he cares about her - he does care - about retaining those last vestiges of control, even after the breakup. What he really wants to know is if she is suffering or doing badly, because that feeds his sick ego. He feels best when he puts other people in as much pain as he is in. People in relationships have conflicts. But there is a right way and a wrong way to resolve them, and no matter what the other person does, no matter what a person's "issues" are, abuse is the wrong way. Emotional cruelty and abuse are choices. A man can choose to be abusive or choose to be non-abusive; he can choose to be honest and straightforward, or passive-aggressive and covert, and no matter how hard a man tries to blame his partner, there is no justification for abuse. 143
If you are a victim of emotional abuse, you have to wake up to the fact that this person *does not love you* and probably hasn't loved you for a very long time, if ever. Because the truth of the matter is, someone who can be emotionally cruel, malicious, and compassionless with people who have given him their love and their trust, is so absorbed in self-hate that he is incapable of loving himself, much less anyone else. What the abuser feels is obsession, not love. If you find that you are having to explain the basics of respect and courtesy to a partner - if you are finding that he just DOESN'T SEEM TO GET IT, when you try to explain why his behavior or actions were disrespectful - run far and run fast. People who are capable of maintaining and contributing to a loving, supportive, healthy relationship, DON'T need to constantly have the concepts of respect, compassion, and consideration explained to them. Just because he admits his behavior (and WATCH - some abusers are VERY good at acknowledging they did something without apologizing, or admitting there was anything WRONG with the behavior.), does NOT mean he is willing to change it, that he will not repeat the behavior, nor that he even believes he did anything unacceptable, hurtful or wrong. DO NOT take admission of an act as a sign of integrity, acceptance of responsibility, a show of remorse, or an indication of genuine caring, unless you see EXPLICIT behavior that demonstrates it. It is NOT wrong, or unhealthy to want someone to love and care about you and care for you, and to want to reciprocate. It is only through this kind of openness that we can achieve true intimacy with another individual. And two emotionally healthy people, CAN do this without becoming co-dependent. Unfortunately, abusers violate the trust that this kind of relationship requires, and are incapable of true intimacy. They want you to be dependent. People who ARE capable of genuinely loving you in a healthy and safe way, DON'T WANT TO HURT YOU, and do not DELIBERATELY DO THINGS TO HURT YOU. They don't play on your insecurities and they don't wage psychological warfare on you. They don't blame YOU for all the relationship problems, and they don't fabricate problems just so you can be the scapegoat. 144
People who love you will treat you with respect, consideration, courtesy, honesty and compassion. If you are with someone who matches the abusive behavior in this article, get help. The sooner you wake up to the fact that the relationship is unhealthy, and move on, the sooner your life will improve. Remember: Safe People are people who draw you closer to who you were meant to be spiritually, emotionally, mentally and physically. They encourage you to be your most loving, growing self.
Footnote: Many people have written to me asking where this article came from, what are my references? It came from "eating the fucking dog food" (figuratively, folks) - from fucking up. Bigtime. From getting sucked in and having to dig myself out of the shit. It came from having to take a long hard look at myself and figure out what was wrong with ME that made me susceptible, and learning about what I should watch out for so it doesn't happen again. It came from reading, and counselling, and introspection, and talking to people in the counselling profession, and talking to others who had been through similar experiences, and all that hard work stuff. No, I'm not a doctor, or a psychologist (though one of my ex's thinks I SHOULD be), but over time, I have developed a deep insight into the human condition - largely because having life bite you in the ass has the side effect of opening your eyes, if you let it. There wasn't a great deal of resources online about covert emotional abuse when I wrote this. So in addition to being cathartic, I figured hey, if it helps ONE OTHER PERSON to figure out that they are being taken for a very shitty ride, then it's served its purpose.
For many moviegoers, a star-studded film about global disaster means one thing: the chance to watch famous people die. What movies such as 2012 and Armageddon lack in realism, they make up for with the ghoulish spectacle of celebrities bidding farewell to their loved ones or nobly sacrificing themselves to save others.
Contagion is not that kind of disaster movie. While it’s clear why A-listers showed up for this film — the chance to work with director Steven Soderbergh — it would have been just as effective with a cast of unknowns. The only real star of Contagion is the titular virus itself, so, by “effective,” understand this: You will not want to touch your face after seeing this film. You will not want to enter crowded rooms. You may feel a 146
sudden urge to relocate to a plastic bubble, or Antarctica.
In depicting the initially slow, seemingly inexorable progress of a global pandemic,Contagion is so heavy on verisimilitude that, for many, it won’t be enjoyable viewing. But it is compelling. As he did in Traffic (2000), his panoramic view of the illicit drug trade, Soderbergh jumps around the globe to show us a variety of perspectives on the unfolding disaster. Meanwhile, his tone remains as remote and clinical as the titles on the screen that tell us where we are in the history of the virus’ human transmission.
The film opens on “Day 2,” when Gwyneth Paltrow returns from a business trip to Hong Kong feeling under the weather. Less than a week later, her Minnesota family has suffered unspeakable losses, and soon her husband (Matt Damon) and his teenage daughter (Anna Jacoby-Heron) are holed up in their home, focused on survival.
In a traditional, action-oriented pandemic movie, Damon’s family-man character would also be the Centers for Disease Control’s head honcho tasked with tracking the virus; or he might be the brilliant doctor racing to find a vaccine. He’d bury his grief in his work and kick that pathogen’s ass. In Contagion, however, he’s just what most of us would be in such a situation: powerless, scared and waiting.
The actors who have the “heroic” roles don’t get to grandstand, either. Laurence Fishburne, as the CDC honcho, illustrates the moral dilemmas facing anyone who holds privileged information about a progressing crisis. Kate Winslet, as the official he sends to handle triage and quarantine in Minneapolis, is so tense she almost vibrates; we see (and admire) how she tamps down her personal terror to operate efficiently. And Jennifer 147
Ehle, in her small but key role as the vaccine-seeking doctor, demonstrates that there can be a fine line between heroism and a death wish.
Contagion is a movie about flawed people doing their jobs, and doing them well, under unspeakable conditions. There’s only one real candidate for villain status: Jude Law as a shrill, panic-spreading blogger who claims the virus, like everything else, is somehow linked to the evils of Big Pharma and other corporations. Even he, Soderbergh suggests in a fleeting shot, isn’t entirely wrong; the world’s powers that be bear some responsibility for both enabling and mishandling the crisis. But, if a disaster does nothing else, it separates the true altruists from the opportunists.
The film has so many characters and subplots that Soderbergh inevitably fails to do justice to them all; for instance, the tale of a WHO epidemiologist (Marion Cotillard) in a Chinese village remains frustratingly open ended. A TV miniseries format might have better served Soderbergh’s ambitions than a feature film. But would a major network air a show that developed a scary premise in such painstaking, unyielding detail? Perhaps not, especially since that scary premise is all too plausible.
Mushroomhead is an American industrial metal band from Cleveland, Ohio. Formed in 1993 in Cleveland Warehouse District, the band's music can be described as a synthesis of alternative music, heavy 149
metal, and electro-industrial. Mushroomhead have sold over 880,000 units worldwide, and have made 7 studio albums and 15 music videos. Mushroomhead, Superbuick and M3 In 1993, Mushroomhead was established as a side project. To differentiate itself from the members' existing bands and to dispel any misconceptions about the group's sound and musical content, Mushroomhead used costumes, masks, and pseudonyms. Mushroomhead played its first show in 1993. Days later, the octet found itself on stage alongside established metal band GWAR. "We played our first show on a Saturday" said the band's drummer, Skinny, in an article for Mushroomhead’s official website. “Three days later, we got a call to play with GWAR at the Cleveland Agora in front of 2,000 people – our second show ever!”. In 1995, Mushroomhead released a self-financed debut album Mushroomhead, with their own record label, Filthy Hands Co. (also named as Mushroom Co.). For the members, Mushroomhead became a priority with their original bands breaking-up. Although the line-up saw many changes throughout the 1990s, the band stayed active, steadily releasing music and gaining followers. In 1996 they released Superbuick. In 1999, Mushroomhead released M3, which was the final album self-financed and self-released by the band. Original bass player, Joe 'Mr. Murdernickel' Kilcoyne, formerly of Mystik and the Spudmonsters, could be identified with his bald, pale faced vampire mask. XX and XIII In 2001 Mushroomhead released a compilation album titled “XX” on the independent label Eclipse Records. Later in the year, the band signed with major label Universal Records and the compilation was remastered and re-released internationally. The release of the album led Mushroomhead to major national and international tours including Ozzfest 2002; as well as television exposure via their first music video "Solitaire/Unraveling". Also in 2001, guitarist J.J. Righteous was replaced by one of the band's stage dancers, Marko Vukcevich. 2003 saw the release of XIII, their first album 150
with new material for Universal Records. The album produced the single "Sun Doesn't Rise" which was featured on MTV: Headbangers Ball and the Freddy vs Jason soundtrack. Also featuring the hidden track "Crazy", a song originally by Seal. The album debuted at no. 40 on the Billboard Top 200 charts and sold 400,000 copies worldwide. After an extensive world tour, singer J Mann announced he was leaving the band in August 2004 due to exhaustion and personal reasons. A major reason for his departure was the fact that his father was sick and he wanted to be there for him. He was replaced by Three Quarters Dead singer, Waylon Reavis. In August 2005 Mushroomhead self-released its first DVD on its own Filthy Hands label â€“ "Volume 1". Produced, directed, shot and edited by the band, Volume 1 covers the band's rise in the 2000s with live performances, music videos and behind the scenes footage. While on the road in 2005, Mushroomhead began the process of writing new material and recording a new album. In December 2005, Mushroomhead signed with Megaforce Records, ensuring the new albums availability nationally and internationally. On June 6, 2006 Mushroomhead launched Mushroom Kombat - an interactive flash feature as a part of the band's official website. The mini-game pits band members against each other in a Mortal Kombat-style environment, each member having a unique fatality. Mushroomhead headlined with Dope, Nocturne, and New Orleans locals Invain on The Music For Freedom Tour sponsored by JĂ¤germeister at the House of Blues in New Orleans, Louisiana on Tuesday, August 16, 2005. This show was one of the last big acts to play in New Orleans for a long time due to Hurricane Katrina striking New Orleans on August 29, 2005. Savior Sorrow and Beautiful Stories for Ugly Children Savior Sorrow was released on September 19, 2006, and debuted at No. 45 on the Billboard 200 charts with sales exceeding 12,000. The band's label stated that sales were closer to 25,000 with the inclusion of sales made while on tour. As a result, SoundScan issued an apology the day following the release of sales data due to mistakes made in 151
estimates. The primary reason given was the lack of inclusion of sales from the Best Buy retailer chain. Sales of Savior Sorrow were roughly 26,000 and the chart entry place was closer to the No. 30 spot than No. 73. Savior Sorrow's chart position was later officially adjusted to No. 50. Simple Survival, the pre-released single to Savior Sorrow, was placed at No. 39 on the Billboard Mainstream Rock Tracks chart one week after the release. Also in 2006, Daniel Fox (Lil' Dan) joined the band as a touring drummer. The band has performed 3 shows on the Mayhem Festival tour, filling in for Bullet for My Valentine. Live footage was compiled into the band's second DVD, titled "Volume 2". On December 29, 2007, Mushroomhead won Video of the Year 2007 on the MTV2 Headbanger's Ball for "12 Hundred" from the Savior Sorrow record. On September 17, 2008, it was announced that the band will release the "Volume 2" DVD on October 28 through Filthy Hands/Megaforce Records. The disc features two and a half hours of content, including live footage from the three-year Savior Sorrow tour, music videos including "12 Hundred", "Simple Survival", "Burn", the short video for "Tattoo", "Save Us" and "Embrace The Ending", video commentary and behind the scenes footage. To support the DVD, Mushroomhead hit the road with The Autumn Offering, XFactor1, and Human Factors Lab from October 3 in Findlay, Ohio, until November 2 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. After the tour, Mushroomhead returned to the studio to record their next album. They released Beautiful Stories for Ugly Children in September 2010. Within the first week of its release it became the No. 1 best selling metal album on iTunes. A new song, "Your Soul Is Mine," appeared on the Saw VI Soundtrack. On October 1, 2010, a music video for "Come On" debuted on Headbangers Ball on MTV. The video has since been barred from airing on MTV and other television outlets after being deemed too graphic by network censors. On October 28, 2010, the band's founding guitarist, JJ Righteous, passed away of unknown reasons at the age of 41. 152
In October 2010, following the death of ex band-mate JJ Righteous, J Mann appeared on stage with the band during their Halloween show, performing vocals for two songs alongside both Jeffrey Nothing and Waylon. Both he and Waylon made a point of announcing that there were no hard feelings between the two of them, and that they are in fact on good terms with each other. It has been confirmed that Mushroomhead will be releasing a music video for "Burn The Bridge" in August. Image and style The members of Mushroomhead have identified themselves by wearing masks and by its distinct “X Face” logo – commonly worn on the masks of most members, as well as clothing and merchandise. The band originally adopted masks and stage names to not conflict with their original bands. The band's look has evolved over the years, featuring alterations to bring them up to date and freshen up the image for new albums and tours. Since 1999, Mushroomhead has had an on-and-off rivalry with Iowa-based band Slipknot. The feud erupted (mostly among fans) due to the image similarities between the bands; such as the masks and costumes worn on stage. Before signing Slipknot, Roadrunner Records were interested in signing Mushroomhead, but Mushroomhead passed on the deal. The rivalry is now officially over as confirmed in several interviews with Waylon, ST1TCH and Skinny. Recently Mushroomhead posted on their official Myspace page their thoughts about Paul Gray's death, they stated: "R.I.P. Paul Gray, This feud needs to end. Much Love and Respect to the guys in Slipknot". Oderus Urungus of the band GWAR has said that GWAR is friends with Mushroomhead, and not all monster metal bands are enemies. Members
Current • Jeffrey Hatrix (Jeffrey Nothing) – vocals (1993–present) • Waylon Reavis (Waylon) – vocals (2004–present) • Dave Felton (Gravy) – guitars (1999–present) • Jack Kilcoyne (Pig Benis) – bass (1995–present) • Tom Schmitz (Shmotz) – keyboards (1993–present) • Rick Thomas (ST1TCH) – turntables, electronics, samples, water drums (2001–present) • Steve Felton (Skinny) – drums, percussion (1993–present) • Daniel Fox (Lil' Dan) – water drums, electronic drums, custom percussion (2006–present) Former • Joe Lenkey (DJ Virus) – turntables, electronics, samples (1993–1995) • Joe Kilcoyne (Mr. Murdernickel) – bass guitar (1993–1995) • Richie Moore (Dinner) – guitars (1993–1999) • John Sekula (J.J. Righteous) – guitar (1993–2001) • Jason Popson (J Mann) – lead vocals (1993–2004) • Marko Vukcevich (Bronson) - guitars, (2001–2006), turntables, electronics, samples (1995–2001), dancing (1993–1995)
Up Coming Tours 10/01/11 Traverse City, MI Streeter’s United States 10/02/11 Sandusky, OH The Underground United States 10/04/11 Cedar Falls, IA The Wheelhouse United States 10/05/11 Minneapolis, MN 1st Ave United States 154
10/06/11 Joliet, IL Mojoe’s United States 10/07/11 Dayton, OH McGuffys United States 10/08/11 Flint, MI Machine Shop United States 10/09/11 Buffalo, NY Town Ballroom United States 10/11/11 Lexington, KY Busters United States 10/12/11 Lancaster, PA. Chameleon Club United States Time: 6:00pm. Age restrictions: All Ages. 10/13/11 Baltimore, MD Recher Theatre United States Tour: ROCK N’ SHOCK 2011 10/14/11 Worcester, MA Rock n Shock United States Tour: THE SLAUGHTERHOUSE ROADSHOW 10/15/11 Pittsburgh, PA Altar Bar United States 10/16/11 Poughkeepsie, NY The Chance United States 10/18/11 Jacksonville,NC. Hooligan’s United States Time: 6:00pm. Age restrictions: All Ages. 10/20/11 Houston,TX. Scout Bar United States Time: 6:00pm. Age restrictions: All Ages. 10/21/11 Tyler,TX. Click’s United States Time: 6:00pm. Age restrictions: All Ages. 155
10/22/11 San Antonio,TX. Backstage Live United States Time: 6:00pm. Age restrictions: All Ages. 10/23/11 Dallas,TX. Trees United States Time: 6:00pm. Age restrictions: All Ages. 10/24/11 Lubbock,TX. Wreckers United States Time: 6:00pm. Age restrictions: All Ages. 10/27/11 Sauget,IL. Popâ€™s United States Time: 6:00pm. Age restrictions: All Ages. 10/28/11 Columbus,OH. Al Rosa Villa United States Time: 6:00pm. Age restrictions: All Ages. Tour: ANNUAL HALLOWEEN SHOW ! 10/29/11 Cleveland,OH. Agora Theatre United States Time: 6:00pm. Age restrictions: All Ages. Tour: THE SLAUGHTERHOUSE ROADSHOW 10/30/11 Hillside,MI. The Dawn Theatre United States Time: 6:00pm. Age restrictions: All Ages. 10/31/11 Louisville,KY. Phoenix Hill Tavern United States
Peter Carrol - PsyberMagick Peter Carrol is considered the founder of chaos magick and is better known for creating the I.O.T (Illuminates of Thanateros) or better known as the Pact. Chaos Magick is growing and many top occultist of today have started to look into this field deeper and add it to there own practices. This book is written much like the Book of Lies being that it is written more in memnomics and whimsical, making it a very easy read and easy to understand, but will test what you have been 158
taught so one most be willing to let go of old teachings and be open to what is being taught, and also understand that it takes what we already know and opens new doors on what magick can truly do. Chaos magick has been around for a very long time just not practice or understood, such people as Crowley, A.O. Spare, Levi, and several other used these very same teachings to the point of giving up the traditional teachings. I personally give this book 4 1/2 stars but will admit this is not for everyone and definantly not for those that are closed minded or can't put there idiotic views to the side.
Recipes for Mabon GARLIC - ROASTED POTATOES & GREENS 2 pounds Red-Skinned Potatoes, sliced 6 large Cloves Garlic, sliced lengthwise 1/3 cup Extra-Virgin Olive Oil 3 Tablespoons Wine Vinegar Salt Pepper 4 cups Watercress Sprigs, rinsed 2 Tablespoons Chives, chopped
Mix potatoes, garlic and oil in a 10 x 15" rimmed pan. Bake at 450 degrees until well browned, about 1 1/4 hours. Turn vegetables with a wide spatula every 10-15 minutes. Pour vinegar into pan, scraping with spatula to release browned bits and to mix with potatoes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Pour potatoes into a wide, shallow bowl. Chop half the watercress and mix with potatoes. Tuck remaining watercress around potatoes and sprinkle with chives.
BLACKBERRY WINE 3 pounds of blackberries 3 pounds of sugar 1 gallon of boiling water Wash berries, put in large bowl and pour over them the boiling water. Stir well, then cover the bowl and leave for ten days. Strain liquid through muslin, add the three pounds of sugar and stir well. Cover the bowl and leave for three days, but stir daily. Put into bottles and cork, loosely at first. The wine will be ready to drink in six months.
HONEY WHOLE WHEAT BREAD 9 cups whole-wheat flour 4 teaspoons salt 2 pkg. active dry yeast 1 1/2 cups milk 1 1/2 cups water 6 tablespoons butter 1/2 cup honey
Sift together 3 cups flour, salt, and yeast. Combine milk, water, butter, and honey in a saucepan and heat over low heat until liquids are warm (butter need not melt completely). Gradually add to dry ingredients and beat 2 minutes. Add remaining flour a cup full at a time until a soft dough forms. Turn out onto lightly floured surface and allow to rest 10 minutes. Knead until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. Place in large greased bowl and turn to grease all sides of dough. Cover and allow to rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk, about one hour. Punch dough down and turn out onto lightly floured surface. Divide dough in half and shape each half into a loaf. Place into greased loaf pans. Cover and let rise in warm place until double in bulk, about one hour. Bake at 375 degrees for 35-40 minutes. Remove from pans and cool on racks.
Halloween Recipes Raisin' the Dead Snack Mix 1 pound yogurt covered raisins 1 pound salted cashews 1 (14 ounce) package chocolate covered peanuts 1 pound white chocolate covered pretzels, broken into pieces 1 pound candy corn 1 pound semisweet chocolate chips 2 pounds candy-coated chocolate pieces
1. In a large bowl, combine the yogurt covered raisins, cashews, chocolate covered peanuts, pretzels, candy corn, chocolate chips and chocolate candies. Mix to distribute evenly and store in an airtight container. Pink Brain Shooter 1 brain-shaped gelatin mold 4 (3 ounce) packages peach flavored gelatin mix 3 cups boiling water 1 (12 fluid ounce) can evaporated milk 1 1/2 cups peach schnapps 4 drops blue food coloring 2 drops red food coloring 2 teaspoons water 163
1. Lightly oil a brain-shaped gelatin mold. 2. Stir the peach gelatin mix with boiling water in a bowl to dissolve the gelatin. Allow to cool to room temperature, about 20 minutes. Mix in the evaporated milk and peach schnapps; pour into the prepared mold. Refrigerate until set, 4 to 6 hours. 3. To decorate, dip the mold in very warm water (don't let the water enter the top of the mold) to loosen; invert the mold on a serving platter and lift to leave the brain in place. Mix blue and red food coloring in a small bowl with 2 teaspoons of water. Use a small clean paintbrush to paint the coloring into the grooves of the brain. Return the brain to the refrigerator until the food coloring sets. Serve cold. Black Magic Cake 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour 2 cups white sugar 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder 2 teaspoons baking soda 1 teaspoon baking powder 1 teaspoon salt 2 eggs 1 cup strong brewed coffee 1 cup buttermilk 1/2 cup vegetable oil 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 164
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour two 9 inch round cake pans or one 9x13 inch pan. 2. In large bowl combine flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Make a well in the center. 3. Add eggs, coffee, buttermilk, oil and vanilla. Beat for 2 minutes on medium speed. Batter will be thin. Pour into prepared pans. 4. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 30 to 40 minutes, or until toothpick inserted into center of cake comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes, then remove from pans and finish cooling on a wire rack. Fill and frost as desired. Roasting Pumpkin Seeds 1. Rinse pumpkin seeds under cold water and pick out the pulp and strings. (This is easiest just after you've removed the seeds from the pumpkin, before the pulp has dried.) 2. Place the pumpkin seeds in a single layer on an oiled baking sheet, stirring to coat. If you prefer, omit the oil and coat with non-stick cooking spray. 3. Sprinkle with salt and bake at 325 degrees F until toasted, about 25 minutes, checking and stirring after 10 minutes. 4. Let cool and store in an air-tight container. Why Carve Pumpkins? The story of the Jack o'Lantern comes from Irish folklore. Jack was a crafty farmer who tricked the Devil into climbing a tall tree. When the Devil reached the highest branch, Jack carved a large cross in the trunk, making it 165
impossible for the Devil to climb down. In exchange for help getting out of the tree, the Devil promised never to tempt Jack with evil again. When Jack died, he was turned away from Heaven for his sins and turned away from Hell because of his trickery. Condemned to wander the earth without rest, Jack carved out one of his turnips, took an ember from the devil, and used it for a lantern to light his way. He became known as "Jack of the Lantern."
Featured Member Articles Keeping Our Minds Supple
Questioning Everything by Persephone
Ă&#x;eing open-minded means that we are willing to question everything, including those things we take for granted. A lot of people feel threatened if they feel they are being asked to question their cherished beliefs or their perception of reality. Yet questioning is what keeps our minds supple and strong. Simply settling on one way of seeing things and refusing to be open to other possibilities makes the mind rigid and generally creates a restrictive and uncomfortable atmosphere. We all know someone who refuses to budge on one or more issues, and we may have our own sacred cows that could use a little prodding. Being open-minded means that we are willing to question everything, including those things we take for granted. 167
A willingness to question everything, even things we are sure we are right about, can shake us out of complacency and reinvigorate our minds, opening us up to understanding people and perspectives that were alien to us before. This alone is good reason to remain inquisitive, no matter how much experience we have or how old we get. In the Zen tradition, this willingness to question is known as beginner’s mind, and it has a way of generating possibilities we couldn’t have seen from the point of view of knowing something with certainty. The willingness to question everything doesn’t necessarily mean we don’t believe in anything at all, and it doesn’t mean we have to question every single thing in the world every minute of the day. It just means that we are humble enough to acknowledge how little we actually know about the mysterious universe we call home. Nearly every revolutionary change in the history of human progress came about because someone questioned some time-honored belief or tradition and in doing so revealed a new truth, a new way of doing things, or a new standard for ethical and moral behavior. Just so, a commitment to staying open and inquisitive in our own individual lives can lead us to new personal revolutions and truths, truths that we will hopefully, for the sake of our growth, remain open to questioning.
DID SUNDAY WORSHIP COME FROM PAGANISM? February 1999 168
There are many Christians—not only those who meet on Saturday, but many who attend church on Sunday—who assume that Sunday observance originally came from paganism. The basic idea is this: Sunday was the established day of rest, the weekly holiday in the pagan world. On this day each week, the Romans, Greeks, and other pagans, gathered in temples to worship their pagan gods, particularly the Sun-god—hence the term Sun-day. Later, when these pagans professed Christianity, they gradually brought the overwhelmingly popular practice of meeting on Sunday into the “Church.” The teaching that Sunday worship “came from paganism” has been so often repeated, it may come as a surprise when I tell you this teaching has no basis in fact. It is misinformation. If I can show you—and I believe I can—that Sunday was not a day of rest and worship among pagans, then it should be quite clear that the practice of Christians meeting on Sunday, the first day of the week, did not come from this source. In the New Testament, “the first day of the week” is mentioned eight times. These references do not give any information about whether or not the first day of the week—Sunday—was a day of rest and worship among pagans. For this we will need to look into his- tory. In doing so, suppose we were to contact highly qualified historians—at great centers of learning like the British Museum, the Smithsonian Institute, and Harvard University—and ask them if Sunday was a weekly holiday in the pagan world. Surely their answers would be weighty. Well, this has already been done—by D. M. Can- right, a Seventh-Day Adventist minister. He sincerely believed Sunday worship came from pagan-ism—this teaching had been passed on to him by equally sincere people. But when he began to look into the subject more fully, he came to a different conclusion. It was at this time—back in 1913-1914—that he contacted these great centers of learning we have men-tioned. He carefully avoided giving any idea of his own views or purpose in writing, so as not to influence answers in any way. The responses he received (which I have 169
abridged slightly because of space limitations) are as follows: From the world renowned British Museum in London, England, Department of Greek and Roman Antiquities: Sir: I am commanded by the Assistant Keeper of Greek and Roman Antiquities to reply as follows to your questions on the ancient week: Question 1: Did the pagan Romans and Greeks ever have any regular weekly day of rest from secular work? Answer: No. Question 2: Did they have any regular weekly festival day? Answer: No. Question 3: Did they have any regular weekly day when they assembled for pagan worship? Answer: No. Question 4: Did they have any special day of the week when individuals went to the temples to pray or make offerings? Answer: No; both for Greeks and Romans the month was the unit and not the week. The Greek calendar varied in different states but the month was generally divided into three periods of ten days. The Ro- mans reckoned from three fixed points in the month, the Kaleend or first, the Nones fifth or seventh, the Ides thirteenth or fifteenth. These subdivisions in themselves had no religious significance. Also in the Roman calendars were nundinal, or market days, at periods of eight days. On these days farm work, etc., stopped and citizens flocked into the town markets. To some extent this may be a regular stoppage of secular work; but it had no religious significance. 170
Question 5: As Sunday was sacred to the Sun, Mon- day to the Moon, Saturday to Saturn, etc., were those supposed deities worshipped on their own particular days more than on any other days? Answer: No; the old worship of the gods was disap- pearing when the seven-day week came about. The significance of the deitiesâ€™ names was astrological, not religious, e.g., if a person were born on Monday, the moon would influence his horoscope, but the moon was never an object of common worship. Question 6: When was our week of seven days first introduced into the Roman calendar? Answer: There are traces in the literature of the late republic (first century B. C.) that the Romans used the week of seven days for astrological purposes, in connection with the many Eastern superstitions of Âˇthe period. It was probably the third century, A. D. before the seven day week came into common use. Question 7: From whom did the Romans learn the week of seven days? Answer: From the Jews, alternately the Assyrians and Babylonians; the names were probably fixed by the Hellenistic Greeks. Question 8: Did the pagan Greeks ever adopt in common life, or in their calendar, the week of seven days? Answer: No. Question 9: Did Apollo, the Sun-god, either among the Romans or Greeks, have any special day on which he was worshipped with prayers or offerings more than on any other day? Answer: There were certain set festivals at various temples; these were annual, not weekly. Question 10: Did the pagan reverence for Sunday have anything to do in influencing Christians to select that day as their rest day? 171
Answer: No; it can hardly be said that there was any special reverence for Sunday in pagan times (see answer to Number 5). —I am, sir, Your obedient servant, F. N. PRYCE. Concerning this response, Canright says: “You see this historian gives an unqualified NO to all the questions. Notice particularly that the names of the days of the week were all only astrological, not reli- gious. There was no religious sacredness attached to a day because it was named after some planet as Sun-day—Sun’s day—or Monday, Moon’s day, etc. The sun was not worshipped on Sunday, nor the moon on Monday, nor Saturn on Saturday, etc. Also notice carefully that Apollo was not worshipped on Sunday... his festival days were annual, not weekly.” From the Smithsonian Institute, Washington, D.C., Canright received the following response to similar questions: Question 1: Did the pagan Romans and Greeks ever have any regular weekly day of rest from secular work? Answer: No. Question 2: Did they ever have any weekly festival day? Answer: No. Question 3: Did they have any regular weekly day when they assembled for pagan worship? Answer: No. Question 4: When was our calendar of the week first introduced among the Romans and Greeks? Answer: The division of the month into weeks was introduced into Rome from Egypt. The date is uncertain, but it was not earlier than the second 172
century, A. D. Question 5: When was our calendar of the week first recognized in Roman law? Answer: The earliest Sunday legislation was en- acted under Constantine I, 321 A.D. No legislation of earlier date on the division of the month is known. Question 6: As each day of the week was dedicated to some god, as Sunday to the Sun, Monday to the Moon, Saturday to Saturn, etc., was each of these supposed deities worshipped on one particular day more than any other day? Answer: No. Question 7: Did the pagan Romans have any one special day in the week when individuals, if they chose, went to make prayers or offerings to their gods? Answer: No. Question 8: Did Apollo have any special day in the week or month more than any other day when he was worshipped with prayers or offerings? Answer: No. â€”Very truly yours, R. RATHBORN. CanrightaddressedthesamequestionstoGeorgeF. Moore, Professor of Ancient Roman and Greek History, at Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts. Here was his response: There are two seven-day weeks: the Jewish week, with a Sabbath on the seventh day; and the Astro- logical week, with days named after the sun, moon, and five planets, in our order determined by the theories of astrology, but without any day of rest.... The Astrological week first appears in Greek and Latin writings about the beginning of the Christian era....It had no use in ordinary life. Abstinence from labor on the seventh day, or on one day in seven, is a distinctively Jewish institution. 173
The edict of Constantine (321 A.D.) closing the courts on Sunday and prohibiting some kinds of labor on that day, is the first recognition of a seven-day week in Roman law. The ancient Romans had a market day every eight days, when the peasants came to town to market, but it was in no sense a day of rest. In the old Roman calendar there were many days when the courts were closed and other public and private business was not done. They had also many festivals on which the people left their ordinary occupation to take part in the celebrations, but these have no periodicity like that of the week.... The planetary week in which the days were named from their regents, Saturday, Sunday, etc., was an in- vention of the astrologers, probably in the second cen·tury, B. C., and has no relation to religion or influence upon it. Saturn, for example, was not worshipped on Saturday, nor Jupiter on Thursday. The festivals of the several gods were never weekly festivals. Private persons went to the temples when they had occasion to offer prayers or sacrifices or to make vows, etc. There were no stated days for such visits—though some days were in some temples luckier than oth- ers, and there was nothing like a stated day for the assembling of a worshipping con-gregation except the festivals of the local calendar. —Very truly yours, GEORGE F. MOORE. The following response was from Professor W. H. Westerman of the University of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisconsin: Dear Sir: I shall answer your questions briefly, and in the order in which you sent them. • 1. The pagan Greeks and Romans never had a weekly day of rest. • 2. They never had a weekly holiday or festival day. 174
• 3. They never had a special day in the week on which they made offerings or prayers to heathen gods. (Nei- ther the pagan Greeks nor the Romans recognized a seven-day division or week division in the month.) • 4. They made no offerings or prayers on Sunday to their gods any more than on other days. • 5. The seven-day period of dividing the month or the week was never adopted into the calendar of the pa- gan Greeks. It appears in the Roman calendar after the time of Theodosius, or after 391 A.D., but the week, or seven-day period, first appears in Roman law in a constitution of Constantine, promulgated in 321 A. D. In the constitution of Constantine, which spoke of the “venerable day of the sun,” Constantine regards Sunday as venerable undoubtedly from the Christian standpoint...If it was in any way venerable or a holiday to the pagans, so far as my information goes, the pagans must have adopted the practice from the Christians. Apollo was not worshipped on any stated day of the week or month more than any other. I do not believe that there is any proof that the early Christians were led to observe Sunday by the example of any pagan worship upon that day. –Very Sincerely yours, W. H. WESTERMAN. These same basic points were confirmed in a letter Canright received from J. W. Moncrieff, Professor at the University of Chicago, who went on to say that the notion Sunday was a weekly holiday among the Romans is simply not true—that “reliable, competent historians, with one accord proclaim this notion to be a myth, pure and simple....I have consulted sixteen encyclopedias and dictionaries, and they differ in no essential detail in their treatment of the subject.” 175
These statements from men who have devoted con- siderable time to the study of history are weighty. As historians they could provide answers without any need to uphold, or deny, a doctrinal position. And they answered independently of each other. Two other university Professors referred Canright to the book Roman Festivals by Fowler. This book, though it describes many Roman festivals, says absolutely nothing about any weekly day of rest or worship. Wouldn’t this be a strange omission, if indeed Sunday had been their national holiday—the day they assembled every week to worship the Sun-god? Obviously this was not the case! Schaff, in his Church History, says: “The pagan Romans paid no more regard to the Christian Sunday than to the Jewish Sabbath.” The Roman Calendar at the time of Christ and the founding of the Christian church, was divided into months, not weeks—that feature was added later. The Encyclopedia Americana, article “Week,” says: “The Romans and Greeks...were not acquainted with the week till a late period. The Romans had, however, for civil uses, as the arrangement of market days, a cycle of eight days, the ninth being the recurring one, instead of the eighth as with us.” Accordingly, their days were: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, then 1, 2, 3, etc. Whereas, with a seven day week, the days are: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, then 1, 2, 3, etc. Now this should be carefully noticed. IF pagans gathered on the first day of the week to worship Apollo, Mithra, or some other Sun-god, this would not correspond, week after week, to what we call Sunday. For example: Suppose our calendar had eight days in a week (instead of seven), and we met for Christian worship at seven day intervals. This would require a change of day each week! If we met the first week on Saturday, seven days later we would meet on Friday. Seven days later we would meet on Thursday. Seven days later we would meet on Wednesday, etc. There is simply no way that the first day—of an eight-day cycle—will consistently correspond with the first day of a seven-day cycle. This cries out in a loud voice, then, that the pagan Romans did not observe what we call Sunday as a weekly sacred day! 176
The edict of Constantine, A. D. 321, was the very first time in Roman law that Sunday was set aside as a holiday. It is pretty obvious then, isn’t it, that Sunday had not been the pagan national holiday of the Roman empire before this time! There are some—atheists, agnostics, etc.—who try · www.ralphwoodrow.org/articles/sunday-worship.pdf
Featured member of the month Gyspsy Genie This IS unexpected!
Well, the first thing I do is reply to messages, as people have taken the trouble to message me I think it's important to send replies asap. My beliefs came about through a LOT of trial and error. I was never satisfied with the self-righteous out-pouring's of the mainstream religions and could only see the gaping holes in them (and believe me I sampled a lot of them.) When things just don't gel, you have to seriously question why you are involved. This took me eventually to Buddhism with a generous helping of Paganism 178
for good measure, and as a crone I feel I've put in the hard yards to come to this stage. I have always had Pagan tendencies from childhood. I think there's a natural tendency in children to be much closer to the earth and nature than there is for most adults. It is probably surprising to find that Buddhism and Paganism can be a good mix but they fall together quite naturally for me. I guess I express my beliefs in my lifestyle, living in a forest, not having a house, doing my best to help all others in whatever way I am able. My favorite quote would be: With our thoughts we make the world. This has been attributed to both Gautama Buddha, and Mohandas Gandhi, another of my life-long heroes. As I take an interest in most things I see here it would be too hard to choose any one thing that stands out for me. Thank you for this honor! Blessed Be.
Featured Member Articles Different Types of Hauntings by Hetty A residual haunting is different than an intelligent haunting. A residual haunting does not directly involve a spiritual entity that is aware of the living world and interacting with or responding to it. It is as if an echo or replay of events is happening. Any senses can be involved: sensory, visual, auditory, etc. A residual haunting can be the result of routine past events, traumatic events, or life-altering events that leave an impression on a person or place. The exact cause for a residual haunting is unknown. There are many theories, such as electromagnetic areas and water sources, none of which has yet led to a definitive answer. 180
An intelligent haunting is much more complex. An intelligent haunting can involve many factors. The spirit will express itself in the way it chooses. It may appear as a human form, a shadow, or remain unseen and find another way to communicate. A spirit can communicate with the living, or at least try. It can move objects, leave a scent, make noises, speak, touch someone, etc. Intelligent spirits are not generally malicious. Like the living, spirits vary in personality. A spirit generally retains his/her personality after death. Spirits sometimes wish for help and sometimes wish to â€œcross overâ€?. Sometimes spirits wish nothing more than to exist where he/she is comfortable or where the spirit had strong ties. A non-human haunting should be handled carefully. These beings are sometimes referred to as demons. They can be more aggressive than human spirit hauntings. Non-human beings need not be feared, but should be treated with respect. They can be dangerous or disturbing. It is advised to seek an experienced source to aid you if you encounter a non-human being. Have you experienced any of these? Please add your comments and/or questions.
The Real Count Dracula by Porcelain Doll
~Vlad The Impaler~ Yes, there was a real Dracula, and he was a true prince of darkness. He was Prince Vlad III Dracula, 181
also known as Vlad Tepes, meaning "Vlad the Impaler." The Turks called him Kaziglu Bey, or "the Impaler Prince." He was the prince of Walachia, but, as legend suggests, he was born in Transylvania, which at that time was ruled by Hungary. Walachia was founded in 1290 by a Transylvanian named Radu Negru, or Rudolph the Black. It was dominated by Hungary until 1330, when it became independent. The first ruler of the new country was Prince Basarab the Great (1310-1352), an ancestor of Dracula. Dracula's grandfather, Prince Mircea the Old, reigned from 1386 to 1418. He participated in one too many losing battles against the Turks and was forced to pay tribute to them. He and his descendants continued to rule Walachia, but as vassals of the Ottoman empire. The throne of Walachia was not necessarily passed from father to son. The prince, or voivode, was elected by the country's boyars, or land-owning nobles. This caused fighting among family members, assassinations, and other unpleasantness. Eventually the House of Basarab was split into two factions - Mircea's descendants, and the descendants of another prince named Dan. Dan's descendants were called the Danesti. Mircea had an illegitimate son, Vlad, born around 1390, who was educated in Hungary and Germany. Vlad served as a page for King Sigismund of Hungary, who became the Holy Roman Emperor in 1410. Sigismund founded a secret fraternal order of knights called the Order of the Dragon to uphold Christianity and defend the empire against Turkey. Because of his bravery fighting Turks, Vlad was admitted to the Order, probably in 1431. The 182
boyars started to call him Dracul, meaning "dragon." Vlad's second son would be known as Dracula, or "son of the dragon." Dracul also meant "devil." So Dracula's enemies, especially German Saxons, called him "son of the devil." Interesting fact: members of the Order of the Dragon had a special costume to wear on Sundays. It was a red garment with a black cape over it . . . that's why the fictional Dracula wears a cape! Eventually Sigismund made Vlad the military governor of Transylvania, a post he held from 1431 to 1435. During that time he lived in the town of Sighisoara or Schassburg. You can still visit the citadel there and even the house where Vlad's son Dracula was born. Today there's a restaurant on the second floor. There's also a mural in the house that may depict Vlad Dracul. YOUNG DRACULA Dracula was born in November or December of 1431. His given name was Vlad. He had an older brother, Mircea, and a younger brother, Radu the Handsome. Their mother may have been a Moldavian princess or a Tranyslvanian noble. It is said that she educated Dracula in his early years. Later he was trained for knighthood by an old boyar who had fought the Turks. Dracula's father was not content to remain a mere governor forever. During his years in Transyvlania, he gathered supporters for his plan to seize Walachia's throne from its current occupant, a Danesti prince named Alexandru I. In late 1436 or early 1437 Vlad Dracul killed Alexandru and became Prince 183
Vlad II. Vlad was a vassal of Hungary and also had to pay tribute to Hungary's enemy, Turkey. In 1442 Turkey invaded Transylvania. Vlad tried to stay neutral, but Hungary's rulers blamed him and drove him and his family out of Walachia. A Hungarian general, Janos Hunyadi (who may have been the illegitimate son of Emperor Sigismund) made a Danesti named Basarab II the prince of Walachia. The following year Vlad regained the throne with the help of the sultan of Turkey. In 1444 he sent his two younger sons to Turkey to prove his loyalty. Dracula was about 13. He spent the next four years in Adrianople, Turkey as a hostage. In 1444 Hungary went to war with Turkey and demanded that Vlad join the crusade. As a member of the Order of the Dragon, Vlad was sworn to obey this summons. But he didn't want to anger the Turks, so he sent his eldest son, Mircea, in his place. The Christian army was demolished at the Battle of Varna, and Vlad and Mircea blamed Janos Hunyadi. In 1447 Vlad and Mircea were murdered. Mircea was killed by the boyars and merchants of the Walachian city Tirgoviste. There are different stories about how he died - he may have been tortured and burned, or buried alive. Apparently his father died at the same time. Some say that the assassinations were organized by Hunyadi. Since Vlad and Mircea were dead, and Dracula and Radu were still in Turkey, Hunyadi was able to put a member of the Danesti clan, Vladislav II, on the Walachian throne. The Turks didn't 184
like having a Hungarian puppet in charge of Walachia, so in 1448 they freed Dracula and gave him an army. He was seventeen years old. It seems that Dracula's little brother Radu chose to remain in Turkey. He had grown up there, and apparently remained loyal to the sultan. DRACULA'S REIGN With the help of his Turkish army, Dracula seized the Walachian throne. However, he only ruled for two months before Hunyadi forced him into exile in Moldavia. Again Vladislav II became Walachia's prince. Three years later Prince Bogdan of Moldavia was assassinated and Dracula fled the country. By now Vladislav II had become a supporter of Turkey, and Hunyadi was sorry he had put him on the throne. Everyone switched sides - Dracula became Hunyadi's vassal, and Hunyadi now supported Dracula's attempt to regain his throne. In 1456 Hunyadi invaded Turkish Serbia while Dracula invaded Walachia. Hunyadi was killed, but Dracula killed Vladislav II and took back his throne. He established his capital at Tirgoviste - you can still see the ruins of his palace there. And nearby a statue of Vlad Tepes still stands. He is considered an important figure in Romanian history because he unified Walachia and resisted the influence of foreigners. But it's Dracula's cruelty that most non-Romanians remember. After becoming prince, Dracula supposedly invited many beggars and other old, sick and poor people to a banquet at his 185
castle. When his guests had finished eating their meal and drinking a toast to him, Dracula asked them, "Would you like to be without cares, lacking nothing in this world?" Yes, they said enthusiastically. So Dracula had the castle boarded up and set it on fire. Nobody made it out alive - and that was the end of their problems, as he had promised. "I did this so that no one will be poor in my realm," he said. According to another story, he invited 500 boyars to a banquet and asked them how many princes had ruled in their lifetimes. They said they had lived through many reigns. Shouting that this was their fault because of their plotting, Dracula had them all arrested on the spot. The older ones were impaled; the others were marched 50 miles to Walachia's capital, Poenari, where they were forced to build a mountaintop fortress. They worked a long time; when their clothes fell off, they worked naked. Most of them died, of course. And of course Dracula seized the boyars' property and passed it out to his supporters. In that way he created a new nobility, loyal to him. (The ruins of the Poenari fortress can still be seen. You have to climb nearly 1,500 steps and cross a little bridge to reach it. It's now called Castle Dracula, but several places are called that. Another "Castle Dracula" is Bran Castle, near the town of Brasov. Although Dracula may have stayed there occasionally, it certainly wasn't his home.) Dracula liked to set up a banquet table and dine while he watched people 186
die. His favorite form of execution was impalement. It was slow; people could take days to die. He liked to impale many people at once, arranging the stakes in fancy designs. Nothing was too brutal for Dracula - he enjoyed having people skinned, boiled alive, etc. He prided himself on making the punishment (supposedly) fit the crime. By 1462, when he was deposed, he had killed between 40,000 and 100,000 people, possibly more. He always thought up some excuse for these executions. He killed merchants who cheated their customers. He killed women who had affairs. Supposedly he had one woman impaled because her husband's shirt was too short. He didn't mind impaling children, either. Afterwards he would display the corpses in public so everyone would learn a lesson. It's said that there were over 20,000 bodies hanging outside his capital city. Of course, the stories about Dracula's cruelty might have been exaggerated by his enemies. Despite all this, Dracula's subjects respected him for fighting the Turks and being a strong ruler. He's remembered today as a patriotic hero who stood up to Turkey and Hungary. He was the last Walachian prince to remain independent from the Ottoman Empire. He was so scornful of other nations that when two foreign ambassadors refused to doff their hats to him, he had the hats nailed to their heads. He was opposed to the Orthodox and Roman Catholic churches because he thought foreigners, operating through the churches, had too much power in Walachia. He tried to prevent foreign merchants from taking business away from his citizens. If merchants disobeyed his trade laws, they were, of course, impaled. Dracula created a very severe moral code for the citizens of Walachia. 187
You can guess what happened to anyone who broke the code. Thieves were impaled, even liars were impaled. Naturally there wasn't a lot of crime in Walachia during his reign. To prove how well his laws worked, Dracula had a gold cup placed in a public square. Anyone who wanted to could drink from the cup, but no one was allowed to take it out of the square. No one did. A visiting merchant once left his money outside all night, thinking that it would be safe because of Dracula's strict policies. To his surprise, some of his coins were stolen. He complained to Dracula, who promptly issued a proclamation that the money must be returned or the city would be destroyed. That night Dracula secretly had the missing money, plus one extra coin, returned to the merchant. The next morning the merchant counted the money and found it had been returned. He told Dracula about this, and mentioned the extra coin. Dracula replied that the thief had been caught and would be impaled. And if the merchant hadn't mentioned the extra coin, he would have been impaled, too. DRACULA OVERTHROWN In 1462 Dracula attacked the Turks to drive them out of the Danube River valley. Sultan Mehmed II retaliated by invading Walachia with an army three times larger than Dracula's. Dracula was forced to retreat to his capital, Tirgoviste. He burned his own villages and poisoned wells on the way so that the Turkish army wouldn't have any food or water. 188
When the sultan reached Tirgoviste, he saw a terrifying scene, remembered in history as "the Forest of the Impaled." There, outside the city, were 20,000 Turkish prisoners, all impaled. The sultan's officers were too scared to go on - Dracula had won again. Although the sultan retreated, Dracula's little brother Radu did not. The Turks had provided him with an army in hopes that he could seize Dracula's throne. Many of Dracula's boyars abandoned him to join Radu. Radu's army pursued Dracula to his fortress at Poenari. Dracula's wife was so frightened that she threw herself from the upper battlements. The Turks seized the castle, but Dracula managed to escape through a secret tunnel. There were still some peasants around he hadn't impaled, and they helped him flee from Walachia. He went to the new king of Hungary, Matthias Corvinus, for help. Instead the king had him imprisoned in a tower. Dracula remained in Hungary for twelve years while Radu ruled Walachia as a puppet for the Turks. After the first four years he was allowed to move into a house. He ingratiated himself with the Hungarian royal family, and even married one of its members (possibly the king's sister). He became a Catholic at this time, which would have pleased the Catholic Hungarians. But he was still the same old Dracula. He impaled rats and birds for fun. Once a thief broke into his house and a Hungarian captain followed him to arrest him. Dracula didn't kill the thief he killed the officer. Why? Because the officer was a gentleman, and should have known not to enter a house uninvited. 189
THE DEATH OF DRACULA According to some accounts, Dracula's brother Radu died in 1474. The sultan put one of the Danesti clan, Basarab the Old, on the Walachian throne. In 1476 Dracula invaded Walachia with the help of Moldavia and Transylvania. They drove Basarab out of the country, and Dracula again became Walachia's prince. Most of Dracula's army then went home to Transylvania. The Turks attacked a few months later. Dracula was killed while fighting near Bucharest. Some say he was assassinated on the battlefield by his own boyars, or was accidentally killed by one of his men. The sultan displayed Dracula's head on a pike in Constantinople to prove that he was dead. His body was buried at the island monastery of Snagov, which he had patronized. But excavations in 1931 failed to turn up any sign of his coffin! And that is the story of the real Prince Dracula
Featured Groups Ghostly Encounters
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What better group to feature for this month than one that we all love to talk about and group up wondering if they really exist, this group will tantalize your imagination and leave you memorized....
Week starting on October 3rd You might see a great looking opportunity at the beginning of the week, but be sure you look at it in context. How will it impact those around you? What are the long-term consequences? Then, around Wednesday and Thursday, those leadership qualities of yours shine extra bright. Everyone will love to hear your latest big idea at this time, and since you're surrounding yourself with the right people, they'll have awesome input, too. Your road may be a little more rocky this weekend. Keep plans minimal, and find a positive way to deal with any frustration.
Week starting on October 10 th It's definitely your time to shine as the week begins. While sometimes haste makes waste, the more you do now, the merrier you are, and those around you are pretty pleased, too. Then, around Wednesday and Thursday, money or the things it can get you might be on your mind. Don't forget the virtues of simple goodness -- less really can be more (like less stress, for instance). Watch out for jumping ahead this weekend. You're thinking fast, which is great, but if anything serious is at stake, you'll want to change your pace.
Week starting on October 17th That awesome new idea you come up with as the week gets started? Before you dash off a mass email, bounce it off a key person. Family -- or your family of friends -- is in the stars starting on Tuesday, so over the next couple of days, make sure things with them are on the up and up. If a relationship's worth having, it's worth fostering. Speaking of relationships, the more amorous side of life is highlighted on Thursday, Friday and Saturday -- how's love going for you? You can always make it better, whether you're single or coupled up, especially now. You're hot! Let the errands wait until Sunday.
Week starting on October 24th Legal matters, paperwork and processing are favored on Monday, so if you've been putting off such things, procrastinate no more. From Tuesday through most of Thursday, make a concerted effort to understand your emotions rather than just blindly reacting. What's the source? How can you address it? Find out, and you'll be ready for some interesting explorations around Friday and Saturday. Maybe it's career options, maybe romantic 194
ones -- take a look around. On Sunday, slow down. Getting grounded now makes for a promising new week. Week starting on October 31st You want to be number one, sure -- but at what cost? Keep your values firmly in mind as the week begins, and be clear about your priorities -work, personal life, health, philosophy. Starting later on Tuesday, getting together with friends who share your outlook -- and complement it in great ways -- is inspiring. And you'll want to have your weekend fun early, because Friday and Saturday are best for remaining calm and getting rest. Life may be a bit frustrating now; the way out, though, isn't annoyance. Instead, put some positive energy out there. By Sunday, things are looking up!
Week starting on October 3rd Those who think you're a stick in the mud might be mighty surprised by your agile attitude and fluid thinking as the week begins. You're going with the flow, and you look fabulous doing it. But around Wednesday or Thursday, something -- or someone -- may stop you in your tracks. Don't freak out; figure it out. Communication is key to getting a grip on this, so don't clam up. The understanding you're seeking is much easier to find from Friday afternoon through the weekend, and you're also getting along 195
beautifully with others. Enjoy time with friends (or with someone who's a bit more than a friend!). Week starting on October 10th You're liable to do something rash as the week begins. If it's in the career department, consult with someone first; when it comes to love, though, go for it. Why not? Let your heart have its way! You can set the stage for some especially sweet stuff around Wednesday and Thursday, when you're both rock-solid and you possess a kind of magical appeal people can't quite put their finger on. For the remainder of the week, apply your natural determination to observing all that's around you -- especially the interpersonal element. Something interesting's afoot!
Week starting on October 17th You're liable to do something rash as the week begins! If it's letting someone know how you really feel, maybe it's a good thing; if it involves money, slam on the brakes. Your energy will mellow out considerably around Wednesday. It's a fine time to do domestic things or enjoy your own backyard instead of running around, and your wallet will thank you, too. Then your patience will come in handy at the end of the workweek, whether in a work or personal context. Explain nicely -- maybe twice! With the weekend comes the potential for some summer loving'. If you're into it, now's the time!
Week starting on October 24th Monday looks busy, but carve out some time for yourself -- a walk, a cup of tea, a little reading. A little pause can be very refreshing. From Tuesday through most of Thursday, you're liable to be extra passionate -- about 196
ideas, your point of view, a certain person. Try to incorporate flexibility; if you do you'll be ready for anything. Go slow around Friday and Saturday, when situations and motivations are shifting fast. Committing too quickly could get you in a tough spot. On Sunday, though, you're grounded and good to go.
Week starting on October 31st Rock-steady -- that's what you are as the week begins. With your own feelings sorted out and your feet on the ground, you can do a little reaching for the stars now! But starting later on Tuesday, something may be standing in your way -- or is it? Try investigating further and talking it out, sans preconceptions and assumptions, prior to beginning battle. This may not be as hard as you're about to make it. Then, on Friday or over the weekend, you might think you know best, but you might also be surprised by what others can add to your understanding.
Week starting on October 3rd Moving forward with your private plan is one way to go at the beginning of the week; building trust and finding common ground is another. Then, around Wednesday and Thursday, you're sharp as a tack, and it's not just book-smarts -- you're emotionally intelligent as well. Put your head 197
together with someone significant in your life, and see what you two can come up with. Whether you're on the clock or not, work's likely on your mind from Friday afternoon through the weekend. If you want a change, start doing some investigating. Week starting on October 10th Be the one to make the first move at the beginning of the week. It's a 'you snooze, you lose' time for you, so set the alarm a little early, beat a work deadline and tell someone how you feel! Then, if there's conflict in some sphere of your life around Wednesday and Thursday, don't avoid it. Unsure how to proceed? Find someone who's handled something similar in a way you admire, and just ask. Over the next few days, your always-abundant interpersonal skills are even better than ever, and everything that's wonderful about you is even more so. Rock your world!
Week starting on October 17th You're the star of the show at the beginning of the week if the stars have their say! Your way with networking and flirting is especially favored now -just watch the overlap! Around Wednesday, though, interpersonal stuff may take more effort. Can you strengthen a relationship, or negotiate instead of fighting? Then you'll be sharp as a tack starting Thursday, with creative power and analytical ability to boot. It's great for work and for play. When the weekend comes around, though, find a little peace and quiet here and there, alone or with a certain someone.
Week starting on October 24th Though it seems like an unlikely day for love, Monday's got romance written all over it. You're whip-smart, too -- really the whole package. From 198
Tuesday through most of Thursday, your feelings are evolving in reaction to the world around you, and the closer you observe, the more progress you'll make. A snail's pace is actually the most productive now. Expect extremes around Friday and Saturday -- good times, bad times ... you'll get your share. Respond with intelligence rather than flippantly, and the former will outweigh the latter. On Sunday, actions speak louder than words.
Week starting on October 31st Find out what's really going on as the week begins. Don't ignore your confusion -- take it as a cue to apply yourself and learn more, whether it's work, your personal life or something else entirely. Starting later on Tuesday, you've got the ability to make all kinds of connections -- between ideas, with people and more. Pay attention, because there's something here you'll want to take deeper. If you want to have a big talk or send a clear message, your best bet is to hold off on Friday and Saturday; Sunday's much better suited for getting through.
Week starting on October 3rd It's home (or friends and family) versus work and other responsibilities as the week begins. Explaining your situation and setting sensible priorities is better than stressing. Around Wednesday and Thursday, your sensitive 199
side raises your awareness of a situation, but before you respond, look at the logical angle as well (or get someone to help you do so!). Then you really get it this weekend, with that intuitive understanding of yours helping you click with others and see your place in the universe. Everything's interconnected in amazing ways. Week starting on October 10th You're always an emotional creature, but the strength (and maybe the rapid changeability!) of your feelings might surprise even you at the beginning of the week. Think about what to keep to yourself. If you're thinking about a date or fun with friends, Wednesday and Thursday are your best days to be a total charmer and have a great time. Consider cozy at-home social time instead of going out. If you're going back and forth about something, the rest of the week brings an opportunity to get off the fence -- and make a splash while you do it.
Week starting on October 17th Taking direction isn't your strong suit on Monday, but try to take it in stride. Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday are your power days this week, at work, in love and in whatever you choose to put your heart into. Others will be coming to you for direction, and being asked your opinion will feel great. Take a little extra time in answering each question that's posed, and you'll be an all-star across the board. Around Friday, you might feel like celebrating life; just don't overdo it! You'll want plenty of energy for lots of projects this weekend.
Week starting on October 24th Be ready to clear up a little miscommunication on Monday -- the sooner, 200
the better. Then, from Tuesday through most of Thursday, your emotional reactions are strong, but then again, so is your intuition. You're just extra-sensitive, which can be a very good thing. If you've got tons of social stuff planned around Friday and Saturday, scale back a bit; you'll want time alone as well (or perhaps alone with a certain someone!). On Sunday, get something done that you've been putting off -- even if it's a little thing, the sense of accomplishment will be great.
Week starting on October 31st Appearances aren't everything, but do pay attention to how you're coming across as the week begins. Smile and be polite, even if you're not feeling it; saying something positive instead of negative can have surprising effects. Starting later on Tuesday, your heart may be speaking loud and clear, but you'll have to translate it into stuff others (or a certain someone) can understand. A little logic might help! On Friday and Saturday, though, you're getting it and they're getting you. These are awesome days to explore. On Sunday, you'll want to slow it down.
Week starting on October 3rd Just because you know it doesn't mean you have to show it, and a subtle, roundabout approach may be best as the week begins. Offering to help 201
instead of offering your two cents is a nice way to go. You may need to relinquish something around Wednesday and Thursday. Letting go as a way to ultimately have more may be counterintuitive, but holding on too tightly is just uncomfortable. Some key information's there for you on Friday or over the weekend. Dig a bit to find it. Once you do, don't forget to note your first reaction -- it's correct Week starting on October 10th It's live and learn as the week begins, but in a good way. Whatever you're trying to understand seems clearer, and figuring it out further is actually fun. Around Wednesday and Thursday, you might be ready to make a stand, perhaps at work, but is this the angle you really want to take for the long haul? Smartest plan: Leave yourself room to change it up. If you're going out on the town this weekend, try a lecture, art event or the theater. Whether it's great or not so hot, your smart take on it means talking about it is fun, and that makes for great bonding.
Week starting on October 17th You're easily swayed on Monday, so make sure you're listening to quality people and getting the facts. Over the next couple of days, your natural pride will be a good thing -- it means you'll do the best you can, both at work and in your personal life. But if you really want to shine, just wait until Thursday, Friday and Saturday, when the stars do their very best on your behalf, making life -- and maybe love -- beautiful. Your connections with others will be remarkable; this is what it's all about. Enjoy the heck out of it, but don't neglect a practical matter when Sunday comes.
Week starting on October 24th
Friendships and more romantic interpersonal connections are favored on Monday, so be sure to get in touch (maybe literally!). From Tuesday through most of Thursday, if you think somebody doesn't have your best interests at heart, you're very likely right. Consider a frank discussion about dovetailing your needs, or consider ending this arrangement. Around Friday and Saturday, look out world, here you come! You're unstoppable -- and unstoppably hot. What's especially sexy: Your frankness and humor. On Sunday, quiet down and you'll hear something interesting.
Week starting on October 31st Getting all enthusiastic about something is great, but be aware of developing staying power, too, as the week begins. Are you going to lose interest? Think it through. Starting later on Tuesday, your individualism sets you apart -- and you may have to make a conscious effort to connect on a personal level. Give someone a block of your time, sans noise and distraction. They love your attention. You've got a learning opportunity on Friday and over the weekend -- and learning can be fun. Curiosity definitely doesn't kill the cat now.
Week starting on October 3rd Add a new twist as the week begins, and you just might see some immediate and pleasing results. Use that imagination -- it's particularly 203
powerful now. Detailed mental efforts are favored around Wednesday and Thursday, whether you're tackling the nitty-gritty on a work project or examining the ins and outs of a relationship. Make sure to look at the positive elements as well as doing the problem-solving. From Friday afternoon through the weekend, starting stuff on your own won't go as well as helping others see things through -- and the latter is more fun, too. Week starting on October 10th Your go-getter attitude and assertiveness as the week begins can take you places. Be logical instead of getting into dramatics. Put something unusual in your organized plan around Wednesday and Thursday, and allow extra time for truly absorbing it. Whether you're learning something new or hanging out with someone great, it's time well spent. Things really can go either way for the rest of the week, but luckily you're in control. If you feel anxious, examine why; get exercise for good energy; and plan a nice little treat for yourself (and maybe for someone sweet!).
Week starting on October 17th Your diligence on Monday will make all the difference. Pay extra attention, both with facts or figures and when it comes to people and feelings. Then, a gathering of some sort is in order over the next few days. Say yes to invitations, and put together a little shindig of your own. You don't have to get every detail perfect -- spur-of-the-moment can be great! At the end of the workweek, watch out for double-bookings, things (or people) running late and other logistical issues. But when the weekend comes, the stars smile on you and what you do. What's your top priority now?
Week starting on October 24th Do some comparison shopping on Monday, whether it's your work or personal budget that's at stake (or your heart -- there's a lot out there for the picking in the online personals!). From Tuesday through most of Thursday, remember that people can tell when your attention's wandering. You'll get bonus points for tuning in and asking an intelligent, engaged question or two. Then, will you be the responsible one or take a risk around Friday and Saturday? Or, better, how about a little of both? On Sunday, some sweet energy comes your way. A romantic brunch, anyone?
Week starting on October 31st Is that love that's in the air as the week begins? You've got an awesome vibe, and while you may love your job, you'll want to bring it into play in your personal affairs now, too. Starting later on Tuesday, the stars give you an opportunity to shake things up a bit. Over the next few days, thinking and doing things a little differently has big effects. Turn to that quirky friend of yours, who might have an idea or two of what to do. And now that you've shaken, let things settle on Friday and over the weekend. See how it's all sorting out before you judge
Week starting on October 3rd A little looking back may be inevitable as the week begins, but make sure you're looking forward, too. If you feel a little blue, talk to a friend and 205
come up with a plan. Around Wednesday and Thursday, you're definitely up for getting out and about. And guess what? Love's favored now, with your big, beautiful mind as a source of major allure. Smart is sexy, so don't you dare dumb it down. This weekend, it's more about baby steps than giant leaps. Appreciate the little things, and be ready to laugh something off.
Week starting on October 10th Pay particular attention to a tete-a-tete or heart-to-heart you have as the week begins. The stars are sending an opportunity for improved interpersonal stuff, but things could also go sour if you're not careful. Around Wednesday and Thursday, you've got the magic touch, putting people at ease and skillfully working through any issues in ways that benefit everyone. Plus you're just plain hot! When the weekend comes, your energy's not so much about tackling tons of projects and getting stuff done as it is about sharing your feelings and quietly enjoying life.
Week starting on October 17th There are at least two sides to every story as the week gets going, and you're delving into all the angles and fitting together the different perspectives. Good for you -- get someone else in on the act to help (and to make it more fun). And around Wednesday, get ready to accentuate the positive. Things can't always go off without a hitch, but look for lessons learned and all's not lost. If you come up with an especially creative idea, the star will send you a push towards getting started on Thursday. Then all through the weekend, you'll have amazing vision -- and all kinds of charm. Sweet!
Week starting on October 24th The stars smile on you on Monday, so get up, get going and make the most of your sweet self. From Tuesday through most of Thursday, work, money and material stuff may be uppermost in your mind, but don't lose track of your usual lovely balance. Be ready to reprioritize according to your values. Watch friendships blossom and your network branch out around Friday and Saturday -- and if you've got romance on your mind, this is a fine time to pursue that, too. A more serious mood comes on Sunday. What's on your mind?
Week starting on October 31st If you're feeling a little off-kilter as the week gets going, exercise will help by giving you time to think things through. And from sometime on Tuesday through the next couple of days, the stars send some most welcome love energy your way. Do you want to be social and share your interpersonal wealth, or is there a certain someone you'd like to concentrate on? It's better to give than to receive on Friday and over the weekend -- but if you get your good karma going, you'll be doing both before you know it
Week starting on October 3rd If you've got a big idea, the stars are making it much, much easier to get it off the ground as the week begins. Someone you think might have 207
objections is liable to offer support. But before you get carried away, beware of conflicts around Wednesday and Thursday. Maybe it's your crazy-busy schedule, or maybe you and a loved one aren't quite seeing eye-to-eye. Watch for an unexpected solution. Then, if you've got romance on your mind, get it out in the open from Friday afternoon through the weekend! A mystery of love can now be revealed. Hot!
Week starting on October 10th How are you feeling at the beginning of the week? Tune into the signals your body is sending as well as your emotional state, and be proactive about maintaining good physical and psychological health. Around Wednesday and Thursday, someone's got an advantage over you, which is rare! Can you avoid discord and create an alliance here? Then, over the next few days, any financial matters that involve others -- work budgets, joint accounts, even a loan for lunch -- could quickly get problematic. Be very clear about terms, and get on the same page about expectations.
Week starting on October 17th Use your awesome powers of focus on Monday, and something that you missed before will jump right out at you. Nice catch! Then can you let yourself dream a little around Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday? Giving that fierce determination and analytical ability a rest can feel amazingly good -- not to mention the incredible places your mind will go when given lots of leeway. And while Friday may involve some stress, the energy coming this weekend is less intense and more conducive to friends -maybe even more-than-friends! Make low-key plans and do little favors.
Week starting on October 24th Decisions are tough on Monday. Watch out for getting paralyzed by the sheer volume of considerations to take into account. If you can, wait to choose (or at least give yourself room to back out). From Tuesday through most of Thursday, your vision's renewed and your confidence is strong. Don't be surprised if you attract a new follower or admirer now. You may be feeling devil-may-care around Friday and Saturday, but don't get too carried away. Think ahead, at least a bit. On Sunday, you're thinking more clearly, not to mention communicating beautifully.
Week starting on October 31st Yes, you're fierce (in a good way) and you're independent (also a great quality), but you're also working and playing particularly well with others as the week begins. Team up and partner up, on the clock and off! Later on Tuesday or over the next few days, an issue may crop up with a parent, your boss or another authority figure (or someone who thinks they've got authority over you). Can you be respectful, stand up for yourself and see a unique solution? You're hot stuff on Friday and Saturday. Romance takes some interesting turns with you at the wheel. On Sunday, rest up.
Week starting on October 3rd Be frugal with money but generous with your heart as the week begins. Extravagance and new things might be momentarily pleasing, but sharing 209
your feelings makes for beautiful and lasting bonds. You're mentally on fire, both at work and at play, around Wednesday and Thursday. Bouncing those big ideas off someone else who's extra sharp is fun and fruitful. When the weekend comes, you're concerned with the opposite of practical matters -- maybe romance, maybe higher principles. Explore away, but watch out for losing track of time!
Week starting on October 10th Life looks fun and you look great as the week begins. Anything creative you attempt ought to go especially well (and don't forget the creative element of any romantic endeavors!). Then, around Wednesday and Thursday, the universe is directing your attention to seeing both the grand scale and some particularly pertinent microelements. Yes, you want to think big, but look closely, too. The energy for you is unusual this weekend, which doesn't necessarily mean it's negative. In fact, lots of positive movement can happen now. Just be sure you put that slant on your dealings with others.
Week starting on October 17th Watch out for time-wasters as the week gets going, whether at work or in your personal life. There's so much to learn and do that you won't want to spin your wheels when you could be moving! Then if you notice a disconnect around Wednesday, be sure to investigate. What's fallen through the cracks here? After this investigatory phase, let yourself explore around Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Replace any expectations with sheer anticipation -- know it's gonna be good, but keep an open mind about how! More specific details come into play on Sunday. Honor even a small commitment, and don't be late.
Week starting on October 24th You can make a very fruitful new contact on Monday, whether it's for business, pleasure or a little bit of both. Connections are less than crackling from Tuesday through most of Thursday; you've got plenty going on in your own heart and mind to keep you busy, and others may just have to get in line. Tell 'em they can cash in their rain checks around Friday and Saturday, when you're ready to focus your attention on people and projects, lending your wit and general wonderfulness to any and all occasions. On Sunday, you're artistic, whether you're creating or appreciating.
Week starting on October 31st Take an anti-consumerist stance as the week begins. Buying things isn't nearly as interesting as the free exchange of ideas and low-budget fun you can uncover. And the good karma you cultivate starting later on Tuesday -your generosity, your interest in others, your warmth -- creates an atmosphere that might best be described as electric. Part of what's coming back to you: Amazing (and actionable) ideas. And if the stars ask you to look at the past on Friday or Saturday, you can rest assured that Sunday's about the future -- and maybe about romance, too.
Week starting on October 3rd The strides you can make as the week begins are immensely satisfying, but make sure you're not only concentrating on work. The interpersonal angle's favored now, too; make hot stuff happen in your love life! Be ready to make some adjustments to your plans around Wednesday and Thursday. This may be a moment-by-moment rescheduling thing, or it could impact your larger life path. From Friday afternoon through the weekend, your warmth and wisdom make your world a wonderful place. Share of yourself generously -- and help a certain someone find an answer Week starting on October 10th Expect a delay or postponement as the week begins. Even if it's you that's pushing a deadline or promising someone a rain check, it might be frustrating to feel like you're not keeping pace. But with all of your awesome powers augmented around Wednesday and Thursday, you can catch up and then some. Open yourself to your imagination; it's got an alternative that'll make you look like a genius. Everything and everyone's all over the place this weekend, but you can depend on your own instincts and be the eye of the storm. People are definitely coming to you now.
Week starting on October 17th You can be serious about responsibilities as the week gets going, but let your heart be light. Life's what you make it, so you might as well enjoy! Then your social life offers a wild card element sometime around Wednesday. Are you interested? Why not give it a shot? Beware of expecting immediate results at the end of the workweek, whether job-related or not. Make your efforts from the heart because it's right; it'll all come together eventually. When the weekend arrives, the things you find out may amaze you -- all you have to do is ask!
Week starting on October 24th You'll be involved in the day-to-day on Monday, and you'd be wise to not push problematic issues, whether at home or with your boss. From Tuesday through most of Thursday, the right path is illuminated by the stars, and you're pretty much skipping along while whistling. Hint: The more organized you are, the greater your forward motion now. That motion may seem to be reversing around Friday and Saturday, but it's not as bad as you think. Regroup and rethink your plan. Sunday sends great energy your way -- you're back on track and more.
Week starting on October 31st Dress sharp, keep your eyes open and don't hesitate to make the first move as the week begins. Your cosmic profile's very high right now, so be confident and go on with your bad self! Starting later on Tuesday and over the next few days, beware of knee-jerk responses. If you're about to say 'no' to something, ask yourself whether 'yes' or even 'maybe' might be possible. And get some food for thought -- your mental capacity's awesome on Friday and Saturday, and the more you've got to mull over, 213
the more you'll come up with. Plan ahead to avoid worrying about work on Sunday.
Week starting on October 3rd If you don't exercise some self-control and set your own schedule as the week begins, someone else might impose an agenda on you. Be ready to discuss what you're doing and exactly why. You can definitely move on to bigger and better things around Wednesday and Thursday. Take a glimmer of a promising idea and build it out into a shiny, wonderful thing. But when the weekend comes, your attention is required, with regard to something very much on the practical plane. Tune in, or you might find yourself on the receiving end of a major reality check. Week starting on October 10th You aren't like everybody else, so why try to blend in as the week begins? Showing your independent side -- your imagination, your own style, your bright and unique ideas -- gets you major gold stars now, at work and off the clock. Then, around Wednesday and Thursday, you may be dragging, with mundane stuff getting you down. But something funny's afoot, and if you notice it, your interest will be renewed. And when it comes to renewed interest, your energy this weekend is definitely sparking exactly that. Light a fire under your social or love life! 214
Week starting on October 17th As this week gets underway, you've got it going on, as they say! Your charm factor's way up there, and a creative stroke of genius is barely a reach. But around Wednesday, a certain responsibility or routine may seem like a big drag. Assess whether you can divest yourself of it realistically; if not, best to get it done and move on. And there's plenty to move on to around Thursday, Friday and Saturday -- a pleasant surprise awaits, perhaps in the love arena! On Sunday, some downtime allows you to feel rock-solid.
Week starting on October 24th A new friend (or just a nice smile) comes from an unexpected place on Monday, so keep your eyes and heart open. From Tuesday through most of Thursday, you may be sensitive about your innermost feelings, but sharing them with the right person gives you a sense of connection. Why soldier along solo? Look for your outlook and your sense of life's possibilities to expand amazingly around Friday and Saturday. New friends, experiences and even love are at your fingertips, so reach out. On Sunday, rest up -- but get some exercise to get the blood pumping and the mood elevated, too.
Week starting on October 31st Can you embrace your routine and stick with your schedule as the week begins? It's not very exciting, but you can get a lot done (or, conversely, spend a lot of time spinning your wheels). Starting later on Tuesday, the excitement you seek is on the way -- or is it you who's creating it? You've got extra attraction factor over the next couple of days, at work and at 215
play. Hot! If you've been looking to lay something to rest, the stars help you find the way to compassionately move forward on Friday and over the weekend. Bonus: You make a new discovery, maybe on Sunday.
Week starting on October 3rd Go after what you want as the week begins! You'll never know until you try, and you might just try asking; it's so simple that it might just work. Around Wednesday and Thursday, between your own stuff and others' priorities (like your boss' pet project or family matters), you've got a ton going on. Your instinct might be to run yourself ragged, apologizing all the way, but you'll function far better if you actually take time out for yourself. Then, starting later in the day on Friday, some truly stellar energy's coming your way. Plan for an amazing weekend! Week starting on October 10th Pick up a good book or see a great movie at the beginning of the week. Your imagination's active now, and if you don't give it something to chew on, you might find fantasy mixing in with reality. Then, gosh, you're warm and wonderful around Wednesday and Thursday. Hanging out with friends (or, better yet, a 'more than friend') makes for beautiful bonding. When the weekend comes, plenty of choices present themselves; getting another 216
opinion can help you decide. Then again, not deciding and following your nose can lead to some sweet places, especially on Sunday.
Week starting on October 17th Shifting circumstances are plentiful on Monday -- why add to them when you can adapt and surf on through? You do it so well! Then, it's romantic circumstances that are in the stars around Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. It's summertime, and the living -- and loving -- are easy, whether you're with a certain someone or looking to meet somebody sweet. Hint: Your messages find their mark now. On Friday and over the weekend, though, you may be inclined to tune a certain message or factor out. It's not gonna go away just because you ignore it!
Week starting on October 24th One-on-one relationships or meetings could be tricky on Monday. Look for reasonable compromises and better ways. From Tuesday through most of Thursday, though, recognize when others are being unreasonable and set some limits. Being passive isn't going to cut it now -- get a consult from a friend or mentor if you're uncertain about what to do. Making the right choices is easy around Friday and Saturday, and you look great while doing it. No need to toot your own horn; you'll get applause. On Sunday, a talk with a friend far away is fun and fruitful.
Week starting on October 31st Get your workspace, your home and your headspace in order as the week begins -- and don't forget to let others help you. You've got unusual and imaginative (and maybe chaotic) mental energy starting later on Tuesday. 217
Give yourself time regularly over the next couple of days to be free-form, to let it take shape -- this can result in some amazing stuff. On Friday and Saturday, you're hot! It's great timing, and your own knack for what to do and say is activated, too. Settle in on Sunday. Your own little world's a nice place to (temporarily) be.
Ideal moment to deal with an important business matter, sign a contract, seek an engagement, or make choices. You'll take energetic measures to solve a family problem quickly. The exchanges of ideas that you'll have this time will prove to be very productive in the long term. If you suffer from diabetes, redouble your precautions. Sentimentally, very nice moments: maybe an old love affair will surface and you'll find that touching; if you're single, you'll look at married people 219
with a very disillusioned eye.
You'll feel well at ease in your home, and your only dream will be to spend your time before your television set. You'll manage to lead your beloved one by the tip of the heart; don't slacken your efforts in the maintenance of a warm atmosphere between the two of you. You'll manage your affairs roundly and will carry out some lucrative financial deals. Don't shove other people around. If you have to drive a car during this month, be extremely careful, because your concentration will leave much to be desired.
All will go well if you let yourself be carried away by the waves and seize the good opportunities that'll go by, without asking yourself too many questions. You'll have purchases to make for your children or your house, and money will come to you at the right moment. If there're problems that oppose you to your beloved one, you'll be in a position to solve them. You'll enjoy good health, what luck! Don't let tensions settle down in your life and control your emotions; don't take any medicine that isn't prescribed to you by your doctor.
You'll have good chances to get a promotion or a better and more profitable activity. 221
Healthwise, you'll lack pep; massages will be useful, but above all cultivate optimism. Listen to your heart rather than to your reason; don't hesitate this time to commit a small folly if you feel like it. Your children will cause you worries. For pity's sake, don't heed your entourage's advice for the management your finances; if needed, ask for an expert's opinion and make your own decision; don't let yourself be drawn into eccentric ventures.
You'll glow with freshness and vitality; your energy will be at a climax. Concerning love, try to free yourself from the past and to enjoy the present fully. Be careful, religious sects could have some appeal to you! It's useless to kick over the traces: show patience, because in time and place everything will be sorted out. Superb social life in view: it'll be animated, varied, and full of pleasant surprises; you'll be able to shine with all your flickers; some of you can even attain an envious position.
Significant evolution of your professional life or your social situation; adapt yourself gracefully to changes. A favorable month for your matters of the heart; probability of love at first sight. You'll find the necessary arguments for convincing your banker to grant you a loan, or your boss to give you a raise. You'll have an excellent appetite but will easily burn calories, thus avoiding to store fats and take on weight.
This month will be calm enough for you if you're reasonable about everything. You'll be more willing to make concessions, and the climate of your couple 223
life will be clearly more relaxed. Take stock of your various insurances: maybe some adjustments will be necessary or useful. Don't let your children get away with everything. The exchanges of ideas that you'll have during this month will reveal themselves very productive; try new ways of tackling the problems that are worrying you, and the rewards won't be far away.
Difficult month because of financial constraints; modify your spending habits. Concerning love, don't put stress on your partner's drawbacks. You'll have enough critical sense to resist the so-called spiritual appeals of gurus of all kinds. Union makes strength: get help and you'll progress quickly. Thanks to very positive influxes, a food discipline would have excellent effects on your health; you'll have more courage to resist certain unreasonable desires. 224
You'll feel self-confident, aware of your possibilities and even more so of your limits. You'll succeed in galvanizing your close relatives and obtaining from them all the necessary help that you need to achieve your great projects. Allergic tendencies will be on the increase. Don't despair: you'll surely manage to bring your children back to reason. Your reluctance to untie the cords of your purse will surprise those who know you; but, after a few financial setbacks, now you'll be determined to tighten your budget closely.
Euphoric month: you'll enjoy marvelous love affairs, your children will give you many joys, and your most difficult problems will find a satisfying solution. Your professional and material life will meet with a beautiful expansion. 225
This time your friends will bring you solid supports; be a good friend yourself. Lucid and realistic, you'll manage your business very well; you'll be able to improve your material situation thanks to these skillful operations and safe investments.
Expect some unforeseen events coming from your family or concerning your residence. Redouble precautions against crooks of all types, who'll try to abuse your credulity. If you live as a couple, there'll be an opportunity to deepen your relationships with the other one; show yourself more understanding and demonstrative. This astral climate will be favorable to creations of all kinds; those who have a creative activity - artists, dressmakers, etc. - will progress in their art while benefiting from a good source of inspiration and active protections.
Your financial situation will prove to be better than you thought it was. Redouble precautions against lung affections; you'll also be subject to sleep disorders. At work, you'll know how to communicate your ardor to your colleagues; pay attention not to attract jealousy which could damage your objectives. Grant your children more time, otherwise after a while they could feel deserted and profit by the situation to commit the silliest things.
Cards used: Deviant Moon (Used with the Deviant Moon Spread)
King of Wands The Inquirer: Present Day - self and all circumstances in your present position in life Divine Meaning of card: A father, loving, paternal qualities, A married man, wise leader.
7 of Wands Past Influences - events from the past that shape the present inverted Meaning of card: Lose, self doubt, no faith in ones own ability.
Chariot Subconscious Influences - Underlying forces in the inquirer's mind, dreams, subconscious thoughts Divine Meaning of card: A journey to new places, boldly venturing into the unknown.
Star Secret Desires and Wishes - Hopes and dreams not yet realized Invert: Card meaning: Doubting ones ability, stagnant creativity.
6 of Pentacles Hidden Influences - Unseen powers that affect the inquirer Divine: Card Meaning: Charity, gifts, sharing ones wealth, and material generosity,
Ace of Wands Events to Come - Future happenings in the inquirer's destiny Divine: Cards meaning: Creativity, passionate love, birth, new life, potential, good things about to begin.
Wheel of Fortune Surrounding Environment - Elements of home, work, community, etc. Inverted: Card meaning: Unfortunate events, unexpected results.
7 of Pentacles Influence of Others - how those you meet or deal with affect your persona Inverted: Card meaning: In impatience, doubting ones own abilities, little progress.
4 of Wands Spiritual Forces - Effects of spiritual influence over your question Inverted: Card meanings: Insecure home life, unstable partnership, divorce.
6 of Wands Final Outcome - Culmination of Events - result/answer to question Divine: Card meaning: A new hero, change, metamorphosis, emerging better than before, and victory
Walking in the footsteps of Human Giants
From North America to South America Native American Lore Speaks of Giants Artwork by Ernist Nelson 233
For most people their first giant encounter was most likely with David and Goliath, Jack and the Beanstalk, or some other bed time story. For me it was different. When I was very small, not yet five, I lay on my grandmother’s lap late on a Saturday night watching Creature Features, hosted by Bob Wilkins. I grew up in Nevada. We received much of the California broadcasting. There was no cable in those days. The movie we were watching had a giant in it. My grandmother commented that my great grandfather was a giant. I asked if she meant my grandpa with the one hand. I thought she meant him because he was six and a half feet tall. She said, “No, that is your grandfather. I’m talking about your great grandfather, he was much bigger.” I am told that my great grandfather was seven feet tall or more and could grab people by their head with one hand his finger tips resting on their eyebrows his palm on the base of their skull, he would guide them as he pleased. My mother reports that his ears were between six and seven inches from top to bottom. I was told how he had a horse that was six feet high at the back and he could be seen over the saddle from the shoulders up. That’s a big man. The interesting thing is, through my life from grade school to adulthood, I have met with different people who could not believe the story of my great grandfather’s size. From polite people who I could feel thought I was telling tall tales, (Pun intended.) to people who flat out called me a liar or an idiot. This compelled me to do a lot of giant research in my teens. Red-Haired Giants of Nevada Growing up in Nevada I had heard stories of the Sitecah from the Paiute Indians that lived in the area. They told of red-haired men and women of light colored skin as tall as 12 feet who originally lived in the area when 234
the Paiutes had first arrived. Evidently these human giants liked to eat the Indians so they had problems making friends. The Indian tribes of the area finally joined and ambushed the giants killing most of them on the spot. The remaining giants took refuge in a cave. The Indians demanded they come out and fight but the giants refused. So, the Indians piled brush into the cave and set it on fire. Any giants that did run out were shot with arrows, the remaining giants were asphyxiated. In the 1800s this cave was known as Horse Shoe Cave but is now called Lovelock Cave. Lovelock cave is located around 20 miles South of Lovelock Nevada. In 1911 bat guano harvesters started working in this same cave. After digging out four feet of guano they found many broken arrows that the Indians had fired into the cave as well as other interesting artifacts, and yes, they found red-haired giants. Even in the shrunken mummified condition the skeletons ranged in height from 8 feet to just under 12 feet. I did an internet search on this subject and found that the reported heights are very different from what I am stating here. (Internet says 6.5 feet to 8 feet.) My account is from what I was told growing up in Nevada. I will leave it up to you to decide on the heights based on the photo of one of the cave giantâ€™s jaw bone and dental cast of a regular manâ€™s teeth. Most of the artifacts have been lost over time due to lack of interest from science. Go figure. However some of the artifacts are in the Humboldt Museum at Winnemucca Nevada and in the Nevada State Historical Societyâ€™s museum at Reno. The Review-Miner June 19, 1931 Reported the find of two giant skeletons in the Humboldt lake bed. Both skeletons were wrapped in a gum treated fabric. The first skeleton was 8 and one half feet tall, the second was just under 10 feet tall. 235
In 1877 prospectors outside of Eureka Nevada found a human leg broken off four inches above the knee cap including the foot. This leg was found sticking out of solid red quartzite rock dating from the time of the dinosaurs. After using their picks to extract their find from the rock they took it to Eureka. Medical doctors examined the bones and stated that it did indeed belong to a human of very modern appearance. The interesting part was the size of the bones. They measured from heel to knee 39 inches. The owner would have stood over 12 feet tall. The area was searched for more remains but nothing else was found. This story was heavily published in the newspapers of the time. Red-Haired Giants of Hawaii For over 20 years now I have been living in the islands of Hawaii. Only a few years after I had first moved here I again heard about red-haired giants. Two giant 10 and 12 foot red-haired skeletons were found in a lava cave in a canyon behind Olowalu Hawaii. I drove out to Olowalu to see what I could find out. After making my way off the main road onto the old road. I turned up the canyon in which I had been told the research was happening. After a little exploring I found some excellent though strange petroglyph on the side of a rock out cropping. I was just able to take a few pictures before a white SUV drove up with a man and a woman in it. The woman was driving. The woman told me that I would have to leave the area. After talking with her for a few minutes she admitted that Red-haired skeletons had been found and that they were much larger than they should be. She would not tell me any exact measurements. She did say that they did not want to upset the Hawaiians with their discoveries. The man never spoke even when I greeted him.
Olowalu Maui Hawaii Petroglyph It should be noted that although there is the spirit of Pele that is the Goddess of fire believed to live in the volcano. Pele started out as a physical Pele that traveled the islands. She is described as extremely tall with fiery red hair, fair skin, great strength, incredible beauty, veracious sexual appetite and a deadly temper. It is mentioned that Peleâ€™s father is the man-eater Ku-waha-ilo who dwells in the far off heavens. Pele traveled the islands of Hawaii digging underground tunnels in an effort to find a spot that she could dig deep caves that did not flood with water so she could make a safe home for her family. Several days after meeting the man and woman in the SUV, I went back at night. More than anything I wanted to see exactly where the discovery was. This time I took a sugar cane road in from another direction. I four wheeled it in so that I would be on the ridge above the canyon on top of the rock outcropping with the petroglyph. I was not there very long before headlights came on below me and started working their way to me. I knew I could be gone before they could get to me but I figured I just as well go meet them. It turned out to be a local guy who was hired as security to guard the site. He told me that Yes, two giants were found. A man and a woman, the big one was easily 12 feet. He did not like staying all night in the canyon it gave him the willies. I kept him company for a while and he told me where the cave was. Not that it mattered they covered it completely when they were done. Even now the area where I had driven my truck on the ridge to look into the canyon is a housing development. Giants in Peru
Peru Egypt Comparison Recently I took a trip to Peru and guess what jumped out at me in some of the museums I visited there? Yes, it was giants. In Peru they are not whisked away like they are in the USA. (It should be noted that there have been hundreds of giant discoveries in the USA that have been either ignored or taken into custody by the Smithsonian never to be seen again.) The Incas actually had kings that were giants and had red and blond hair. In the Gold Museum in Lima you can still see the clothing and head of an Incan king who stood an easy 10 feet tall. His golden robe is 8 feet long and did not touch the ground when he wore it. His gold gloves are twice as long as my hands. His dried and mummified head is easily twice the size of mine and Iâ€™m not a little person. There are two giants and their belongings in the Gold Museum in Lima Peru. Everywhere you go in Peru there are giant skulls and skeletons. Many of the skulls are not normal looking either, and they are not all thousands of years old. In most cases we are talking hundreds of years. I think it is interesting to compare the Peruvian skulls to the Egyptian busts especially when you think they both built massive structures of stone that we canâ€™t explain. Does it prove anything? No, just interesting. Ica Museum Skulls Peru Now, before you start yelling about head binding and Indian cradle boards. You should know that head binding and cradle boarding can change the shape of a skull but it cannot change the capacity of a skull. The skulls 238
shown above and to the right have from two to two and a half times the brain capacity of a normal skull. Sort of like an ounce of clay. You can mash it around all you want but it will never be two ounces of clay. National Geographic Photo From the 1920s I have tried to keep this within the realm of my own experiences. There is so much more to this. Like the 64 pound sledge hammer found in a 3500 year old copper mine near the town of Llandudno in North Wales. Giant axes unearthed in Iran, Giant swords, etc.You could read for weeks on the subject of giants and if your mind is anything like mine enjoy every minute of it. I would suggest googeling Solomon Island giants, red haired giants, Arizona giants, California giants, Ohio giants, Peruvian giants. I could go on forever about giants but the fact is Science says that races of giant humans do not exist and never have. This article retrieved from: http://thetruthbehindthescenes.wordpress.com/2010/07/12/walking-in-th e-footsteps-of-human-giants/
The Paranormal - Fact or fiction?
What is the paranormal? Many of us associate the paranormal with ghosts – hauntings if you will, but the paranormal encompasses far more. It is a blanket expression for anything we can’t pigeon-hole in a nice, rational manner - yet. Let’s see, there are ghosts, poltergeists, faith healing, witchcraft, voodoo, telepathy, psychokinesis, the Bermuda Triangle, the Pyramids, UFO’s are all members of that elite group that we acknowledge as being there, but can’t fully explain.
The Famous St. Mary's Ghost Take ghosts and poltergeists for instance. Despite there being many documented cases from people not ordinarily given over to flights of fancy, some believe and some do not. Some are prepared to say that there is something there, whilst others are not.
The Bermuda Triangle The disappearance of so many aircraft and ships over the area affectionately known as the Bermuda Triangle has had theorists and scientists alike scratching their heads for as long as the term has been coined. Still though, no-one has a definitive answer for the apparently strange occurrences that have been linked to that area.
The great Egyptian pyramids The pyramids are one of the wonders of the world and have the engineers of today at a loss to know how the ancient Egyptians managed to build structures five thousand years ago that we still canâ€™t. The use of pyramids has not been questioned, but the methods used to construct them, certainly has.
The sign outside of Area 51 - which doesn't exist... UFOâ€™s are something a great many of us have our own theories on. Like the reports of ghosts, reports of UFOâ€™s have been well documented and the governments of today are fuelling the conspiracy theorists fires with what appear to be blatant cover-ups coupled with the refusal to confirm or deny reports linking them with UFO phenomena.
The Juggler or The Magician. Tarot cards have often been used by psychics as a method for focussing when 'reading' people Psychic phenomena are more areas which can come under the banner of paranormal, encompassing areas such as faith healing, telepathy, psychometrics, telekinesis or psychokinesis to name but a few. In many instances, the psychics – for want of a better term, have been documented in scientific journals by responsible witnesses as being ‘real’. There are those who can ‘see’ the future, those who can move objects with the power of the mind, those who can ‘talk’ to the dead and those who can heal ills for which, there were no medical cures and without the use of medical instruments or drugs. Spontaneous Human Combustion Perhaps the most baffling of all phenomena are the cases of SHC. Spontaneous Human Combustion is one of those things that many people 245
have had a stab at explaining, but somehow can’t. There aren’t many documented cases of this, but those that have been seem to lean towards the fact that these people simply burnt. All of the above can be partly explained, but not fully. Fact or Fiction? One man who hosted a phone-in on the radio for people who had had encounters with UFO’s, said that 95% or more of the calls that came in were obviously fakes, but the other 5% had no rational explanation other than that they were the truth. I suspect that the same can be said of most if not all paranormal experiences reported; there are going to be fabrications, but then there are also going to be reports that are genuine. It therefore stands to reason that the strange or apparently paranormal isn’t always caused by wilful spirits, demons or anything of that nature.
The Pontiac badge. But was this car possessed, Haunted or did it just dislike Vanilla? The Haunted Car? A man sent a letter to the Pontiac division of General Motors with a complaint, stating that this was the second time he’d written, although he didn’t blame them for thinking he might be crazy. He went on to explain how it had become a tradition in his family to follow their evening meal with ice cream, however the flavour varies as after the meal, they take a vote on which ice cream they should have. After that, he 246
explained that it was his job then to drive to the local store to buy the chosen flavour. He also explained that he had recently bought a new Pontiac and since then it had caused problems with the ice cream runs. “If I buy vanilla, the car won’t start, but if I buy any other flavour, everything is fine.” This seemed spooky. Did the car not like vanilla? Did it have something against that particular flavour? It was something that baffled the Pontiac chaps too and they sent an engineer who was convinced he was on his way to a total nut-job and was surprised when he met a man in a nice neighborhood who was well-dressed and obviously intelligent. The engineer went with the man to the store and as luck would have it, he bought vanilla and sure enough, the car failed to start. Several more times the engineer joined the man on his ice cream run and the next time they went to the store, the man bought chocolate and the car started first time. Next, it was strawberry and again the car started first time, but on the fourth trip, the flavour was vanilla and surprise, surprise, the car failed to start. It was spooky. On each of the runs to the store, the engineer took notes on outside temperatures, the kind of fuel etc and for a while was completely baffled, but then it dawned on him. It was down to the layout of the store. The fact was, vanilla was in a freezer at the front of the store, whilst the other flavours were further back and therefore took the man longer to locate and purchase. In addition, the car was suffering from vapor-lock, which was still present when the man returned from purchasing his vanilla ice cream, but had had enough time to dissipate when another flavour had been purchased. So as spooky as it may have seemed, there was a logical explanation to the car’s ills. 247
Rainbow Construction is by far thee best theme site that I have ever seen and one that we are happy to support and be a part of. It has some of the best themers's on the web. But what makes this site so much more is that everyone there is willing to help and teach and will always answer any of your questions and give you advise and tips. So for those that want to learn this is the place to be, for those that want a place to show off there work, this is were you want to be. All there groups are for helping you with 248
ideas to code tweaks, even to finding the right site to find pic's and cursors. You will not find any site out there that as everything you need to create a work of art and the help and support that will help you as you go along and learn. They also have themes in many categories that you can use for your ning pages some may need there codes updated so just follow this saying and you will have a perfect theme for your page: "Seasons change and so do codes so if you have an issue with a theme please let the creator know and they will fix"
So please stop by and check this wonderful site out if your looking to learn or show off your work then this site is for you..... One thing we do ask is that if you join please be respectful for the people that are there are serious and dedicated to there work, and if you join just to use themes that are available please send a thank you or leave a comment for it does mean a lot to all of them.....
Bikers Against Child Abuse International Breaking The Chains Of Abuse http://bacaworld.org/about/mission/
MISSION BACA Mission Statement Bikers Against Child Abuse (BACA) exists with the intent to create a safer environment for abused children. We exist as a body of Bikers to empower children to not feel afraid of the world in which they live. We stand ready to lend support to our wounded friends by involving them with an established, united organization. We work in conjunction with local and state officials who are already in place to protect children. We desire to send a clear message to all involved with the abused child that this child is part of our organization, and that we are prepared to lend our physical and emotional 250
support to them by affiliation, and our physical presence. We stand at the ready to shield these children from further abuse. We do not condone the use of violence or physical force in any manner, however, if circumstances arise such that we are the only obstacle preventing a child from further abuse, we stand ready to be that obstacle. How BACA Works Bikers Against Child Abuse, Inc. (BACA) is organized with a central contact person to receive calls from referring agencies and individuals. A recognized, authorized agency with which the child has had contact determines that the child is still frightened by his or her environment. The agency representative contacts BACA, or refers the individual to contact BACA and the name and address of the child is given to our BACA/Child Liaison. The Liaison determines that the case is legitimate, meaning that the authorities have been contacted, and the case in being processed within the system. The Liaison contacts the family and an initial ride is organized to meet the child at their home or in some other location. The entire BACA chapter rides to meet the child and he/she is given a vest with a BACA patch sewn on the back. The child is free to wear the vest or not, and we support their decision. The child is also given bumper stickers, and other gifts that are generally donated by the public. These initial visits generally last about a half an hour. Following this initial contact, the child is given the name and number of two BACA members residing geographically closest to them, who then become the childs primary contact person(s). Prior to becoming the primary contacts for the child, the bikers are cleared for participation by clearing an extensive background check, have ridden with the Chapter for at least a year, and have received special instructions from the Licensed Mental Health Professional. Anytime the child feels scared and feels the need for the presence of his new BACA family, the child may call upon these bikers to go to the childs house and provide the necessary reassurance to feel safe and protected. BACA members and supporters also support the children by: providing escorts for them if they feel scared in their neighborhoods; riding by their homes on a regular basis; 251
supporting the children at court and parole hearings; attending their interviews, and; staying with the children if they are alone and frightened. The BACA members never go to the childs house alone and never without the knowledge or permission of the parents. Our mission is not to be permanently engaged as the childs power. Our mission is to help the children and their families learn how powerful they can be. Our presence will be available as long as the child needs us. BACA also holds other functions for the children such as Bar-B-Ques, and parties. Level 1 Intervention Will consist of the organization deploying a ride, uniting as many BACA members as are able to attend. We will ride as a group to the child’s house where the parent(s) / Guardians will be present to assist us in presenting the child with a patch, stickers, and a photograph of the child with his/her new biker family. If the child is afraid, it is our hope the child will use the photograph as a comfort to convey the message “I am not alone, and you don’t want to mess with my family.” Level 2 Intervention If Level one is not sufficient to deter further abuse or harassment, several BACA members will be sent for further exposure. This group of BACA members will create a presence at the home of the child, being visible at times when the family might be the most vulnerable. The purpose of BACA’s presence is to deter further abuse and to protect the children and the family, if necessary. Level 3 Intervention If the physical presence of our BACA members at the residence of the child’s home does not deter the abuser, a formal letter will be drafted by the Chapter President or Vice-President in the area in which the abuser lives. This letter will be written on BACA letterhead. The substance of the letter will be to explain to the perpetrator that we are prepared to take whatever steps are necessary to become the obstacle to further abuse. 252
Level 4 Intervention While it is against the purpose of BACA to purposely engage a perpetrator, we will ask for the general geographical location of the offender, and conduct a â€œNeighborhood Awareness Rideâ€? in which we will ride to the general location given to us and go door to door letting people know who we are, hand out stickers to kids, and distribute our literature regarding our mission and how we function. If the location or address of the perpetrator becomes known to any BACA Member, we will immediately withdraw our physical presence to avoid any contact. BACA does not condone, support or participate in the use of aggression, violence or physical force in any manner. If, however, ANY person should seek to inflict harm on one of our BACA Members, we will respond with commitment and loyalty to protect our Member. Our Court Appearances We also attend court with our wounded friends. The sole purpose for our physical presence is to assist the child in being less intimidated and frightened, and subsequently give an accurate testimony regarding his/her abuse. If the child requests our presence in the courtroom, the parent or guardian for the child must petition the childâ€™s attorney, who then will intercede on behalf of the child to the presiding Judge. Absolutely no physical confrontation of the perpetrator will be tolerated by BACA, and anyone acting in such a manner will be acting outside of the scope of BACA and will be held completely and solely accountable for his/her actions. When possible, the two bikers assigned to the child as his/her primary contacts should be in attendance. Given that it is not always possible for the primary contact bikers to be in attendance, a petition may be made to the general membership for their attendance and support. A listing of the court dates and times will be kept and updated on the BACA hotline at all times. BACA Creed I am a member of Bikers Against Child Abuse. The die has been cast. The decision has been made. I have stepped over the line. I wont look back, let 253
up, slow down, back away, or be still. My past has prepared me, my present makes sense, and my future is secure. Im finished and done with low living, sight walking, small planning, smooth knees, colorless dreams, tamed visions, mundane talking, cheap giving, and dwarfed goals. I no longer need pre-eminence, prosperity, position, promotions, plaudits, or popularity. I dont have to be right, first, tops, recognized, praised, regarded, or rewarded. I now live by the faith in my works, and lean on the strength of my brothers and sisters. I love with patience, live by prayer, and labor with power. My fate is set, my gait is fast, my goal is the ultimate safety of children. My road is narrow, my way is rough, my companions are tried and true, my Guide is reliable, my mission is clear. I cannot be bought, compromised, detoured, lured away, turned back, deluded, or delayed. I will not flinch in the face of sacrifice, hesitate in the presence of adversity, negotiate at the table of the enemy, ponder at the pool of popularity, or meander in the maze of mediocrity. I wont give up, shut up, let up, until I have stayed up, stored up, prayed up, paid up, and showed up for all wounded children. I must go until I drop, ride until I give out, and work till He stops me. And when He comes for His own, He will have no problem recognizing me, for He will see my BACA backpatch and know that I am one of His. I am a member of Bikers Against Child Abuse, and this is my creed.
Select a state (states in gray do not yet have a BACA chapter): • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
Alabama Alaska Arizona Arkansas California Colorado Connectic ut Delaware Florida Georgia Hawaii Idaho Illinois Indiana Iowa Kansas Kentucky
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Louisiana Maine Maryland Massachus etts Michigan Minnesota Mississippi Missouri Montana Nebraska Nevada New Hampshire New Jersey New Mexico New York North Carolina North Dakota
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Anthrax and Testament Fri. Oct 14, 2011 7:00 PM Orbit Room Grand Rapids, MI BUY TICKETS
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Bone Bash XII feat. Judas Priest Thu. Oct 27, 2011 7:00 PM Sleep Train Pavilion a.. Concord, CA BUY TICKETS 265
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The goth subculture is a contemporary subculture found in many countries. It began in England during the early 1980s in the gothic rock scene, an offshoot of the Post-punk genre. The goth subculture has survived much longer than others of the same era, and has continued to diversify. Its imagery and cultural proclivities indicate influences from the 19th century Gothic literature along with horror films and to a lesser 267
extent the BDSM culture. The goth subculture has associated tastes in music, aesthetics, and fashion. Gothic music encompasses a number of different styles including Gothic rock, Darkwave, Deathrock, Ethereal, Neo-Medieval and Neoclassical. Styles of dress within the subculture range from deathrock, punk and Victorian style attire, or combinations of the above, most often with dark attire, makeup and hair. The term Gothic comes from Germanic tribes which ruled over Europe during the Middle Ages. Gothicism was popularized through literature and it became a distinguished culture in the mid 19th century. Goths have always been considered as odd and attention seeking individuals by people who consider themselves to be normal. Goths are people who regard themselves as misfits in the mundane everyday life of mainstream culture. So, they have created a lifestyle for themselves, which gives them the freedom of portraying their distinctiveness and individuality. Though Gothic lifestyle still faces numerous criticisms, it has evolved as a rich sub-culture which connects every goth to the other. Gothic lifestyle is a way of living, where the Goths follow their own set of values and attitudes. They have a distinct culture, which includes architecture, literature, dressing style, appearance, art and music. The fact that is most popular about Gothic lifestyle is their sense of dressing. Black is the color that is associated with the Goths. However, other dark colors like blood red, purple, dark green and blue are also popular among the Gothic people. Even their appearance is distinguished with a pale base and dark make up. They prefer their hair to be straight and pitch black. However, merely dressing up like a Goth cannot make a person one. Being a Goth is more about the attitude that a person has. Gothic people choose this lifestyle because they feel detached from the mainstream culture and lifestyle. Gothic lifestyle gives them a sense of independence, where they can, not only express their emotions and feelings, but also live life in a way that is unacceptable in the conventional society. 268
Death is another important element that is connected with Goths. Human beings in the conventional society live in the fear of death. However, Gothic people follow an attitude that is totally different from that. They revel in the concept of death and take it as a natural extension of life. Goths are known to have an attraction towards darkness and depression. Their detached and depressed faces are a reflection of the darkness and sadness that encompasses the existence of all human beings. Goths in a gloomy way enjoy the darkness that life offers. The attitude and style of the Goths are reflected in their architecture, arts, music and literature. Goth music has been influenced by several eras and can be divided into four main sections, which include Medieval, 80s - Dark Wave, Dark Techno/Industrial/EBM and Dark Metal. Gothic literature developed during the Romantic age, with the writings of writers like Byron, Shelley, etc. Along with the works of these writers, Goths are interested in reading works of Dante, Tolstoy and also historical books, Greek mythology and the Bible. Gothic lifestyle is an alternative way of living life, which consists of people who share the same thoughts and views. Goths do not chose this lifestyle because it makes them cool and different, but because they feel comfortable in the Gothic world. In short, Goths are no different from human kind, only their perspective is.
The Gothic Philosophy I'll begin by saying that I was unsure whether this page should go here or in Goth Basics, as the philosophy behind Goth is clearly a very big part of 269
what we are, not to mention WHY we are what we are. But in the end I put it here, as you can probably tell... shall we begin? So what IS the Gothic philosophy? Well, I suppose that you could say that it is the one thing, running deeper than fashion and even music, that defines a Goth. You will find whole forums and website's (I guess you could include this one) devoted to working out what makes a Goth 'Goth' - as in, what attracts THESE people to THIS music, THIS fashion, THIS scene? I guess you could say that the Goth philosophy is lately considered a kind of abstract code by which we all live - whether deliberately or not. It is what created that love of Halloween, of spooky things, of black lace and moonlit nights and ravens and cemeteries and red, red roses and ray guns (that last one was for the cybergoths). But where did it come from? Well, let's begin right back at the very beginning. The Visigoths and Ostrogoths. Yes, yes, I know that calling oneself a Goth does not mean 'I believe I am a descendant of a barbarian tribe of pre-medieval Germany'. But, this is where the name of our subculture originated from. Take A Bite, the online net.Goth handbook, says about the Goth tribes, "We like to think of them as a bunch of axe wielding, psychotic, rather good looking men and women, dressed in black riding mighty war horses into battle, and eventually (axeidently (sic)) setting fire to Rome and bringing about the collapse of civilization and then going out for a beer. Philosophically speaking we have the beer and the desire to strike terror into the hearts of mortal man in common." If you're still living at home, this is probably not the best example of Goth philosophy to explain to your parents. But it is a beginning, of sorts. Mind you, the philosophy of most of today's Goths is probably not quite so... uh... brutal (although the thing about the beer may be true). Moving on. Medieval times Again I quote Take A Bite: 'Castles on hill tops, thunder, lightning, storm clouds, knights, dragons, musical song and dance numbers? There is a strong medievalistic element in many of today's Goths. It's not an Arthurian yearning for days of chivalry and Grail quests, but rather a link with the quasi-fantastical 'romantic' aspect of the time and the genre. I 270
think romanticism is the key here, we each have our own notion of the period and each associate it with different things.' In fact, I would say that in many cases romanticism is the backbone of Gothic philosophy - courtly love, the romanticized idea of death, etc. The Medieval period also brings us legends of magic, dark forces and the supernatural, but also of death and darkness - plague and black knights and dragons and tyrants. Goths often have a strong imagination and a love of the fantastical, described by Take a Bite as 'a sort of "New Age with Attitude" tract which was further developed by some of the Romantic poets', so it's easy enough to see why the Medieval period holds such fascination for so many of us - it is a blending of darkness and light, a time when belief in the supernatural still held sway, and you could say that it is that intoxicating mix of the light and the dark that defines Goth. The Romantic period The Romantic Poets indulged in pure decadence - they fought, did drugs, drank, made flowing shirts fashionable, and even wrote a little poetry on the side. The Goth love of opulence and decadence is still very much in effect, and of course there are those in the Goth scene that do partake in hedonistic indulgence of both the legal and the not-so-legal kind. (While many Goths are anti-drugs, like any other scene there are of course those who do like to melt their brains on the weekend...) The Romantic Poets are described by Take A Bite (yes, them again) as having 'a strong sense of individuality within the identity of their peer-group'. Sound familiar? The Victorian Era The Victorian period is often thought to be more inspirational to the aesthetics of modern Goth rather than its philosophy, but I would like to disagree. Whilst the Victorians did their best to act stiff, stern and upper-class, they had a strong degree of gleeful morbidity which shows in much Victorian artwork and in various forms of entertainment (particularly for the lower classes) such as the Penny Dreadfuls and freak shows. Also, many of the books that are said to define the Gothic genre were written during this period, such as Bram Stoker's Dracula. And who could forget Queen Victoria, devoted wife and mother who wore mourning black for FORTY years after the death of her beloved husband? 271
I would say that our philosophy takes on board Victorian-style playful morbidity (for how different is collecting fake skulls to collecting Penny Dreadfuls?). Death was never far away from the Victorians - you could almost say that it dogged their every step. Many Victorian mourning traditions live on in the Goth scene today - not just after death, but at all times. For example, the wearing of black, and veils. Some Goths I know write on black-edged stationery - this was used in Victorian times to give notice of a death. Punk Well, if it wasn't for punk - and more particularly, post-punk - then the Goth scene in its current form would never have come about. Something which strikes me as strange is the fact that many of what we consider the 'original' Goth bands shun the Goth label, and even the scene itself... perhaps underlining the fact that Goth is one of the most isolated and unaccepted alternative subcultures. Punk is famed for its wild energy and anarchistic attitudes... still visible today in some areas of the Goth scene, but on the whole I can't say that we seem to have borrowed overmuch from the subculture from which we originated. Goth and punk nowadays are two very different scenes. Like distant cousins. (It gets even more confusing when you add emo to the mix - it's related to both but also very different in its music style, fashion ((mostly)) and attitudes. But anyway...) New Romantic This was more of an aesthetic thing in its relation to Goth - the visual drama and flamboyance of this scene and its members (e.g. Adam Ant) lending to the appearance of Goth in its current form. But there again is the underlying philosophy - the typical Gothic penchant for dramatics, and a love of beauty in all its forms (particularly the most unusual). Which of course brings us to - Goth Take a Bite states: 'The very crux of the Gothic philosophy, Ladies and Gentlemen, we have a sense of humour! We are morbid, not suicidal and we can laugh at other people, and, just occasionally, at ourselves.We have borrowed various philosophical elements from our historical sources, but the philosophical elements which are most clearly defined are: the desire to strike terror into the hearts of mortal man (or at least turn heads in the 272
street), a romantic sense of the fantastic, the desire for pleasure in extremes (decadence and indulgence), a visual identity within the subculture, a fascination with supernature, the macabre, and the safety of being within a group where we get the in joke.' I'd say that about sums it up for me.
Welcome my kinky friends! And another packed month of fetish fun to keep yourselves more than amused ;)
On a personal note if anyone goes to any of these events please oh please let me know and maybe send me a pic or a little write up on it so I can let others know whats hot and whats not! Happy Playing my beloved friends TQ
"The FemDom Fair" OCTOBER 1, 2011 | 9:00pm - 1:00am Cover for Men $75, Ladies Free! RSVP required, space is limited. Location will be emailed to confirmed guests. Light refreshments will be served. <p>Your browser does not support iframes. The contact form cannot be displayed. Please use another contact method (phone, fax etc)</p>
Presents: "The Femdom Fair" Sponsored by: Featured Goddesses Goddess Brianna Mistress Megan Mistress Kendra Along with several other Goddesses 275
also available for mini sessions.
3 Interactive Areas (*Tribute Required) FOOT KISSING BOOTH "CANING" CORNER CONFESSION CAGE SILENT SHOE AUCTION
October 6-9 DomCon Atlanta Atlanta, Georgia, USA www.domconatlanta.com
October 7-9 Fetish in the Forest Memphis, Tennessee, USA www.impacthome.com/forest.htm
Details Lions and Tigers and Bears! Oh My!! A weekend full of kink, laughter, play and education. We will be staying in a comfortable campground about 15 miles outside of Memphis that holds approximately 60 people in 8 different cabins. Each cabin has eight bunk beds, however, we'll only put 4 to 5 people in each room for comfort's sake. You can bunk with a couple buddies or meet new friends. There are meeting rooms, a dining hall with nice overhead exposed beams <wink wink nudge nudge>, full-service commercial kitchen and plenty more. There will be games, campfires, classes and plenty of kink. Come and get your nature on with us! We even have room for a wet scene or two in the wide open spaces. The campground is gated so that we are the only ones at the site. We have had so much fun every single year! Check out some of the pictures below! The weekend of Fetish and Kink will begin at 5:00pm on Friday October 7th and end Sunday October 9th. Everyone will need to bring a covered dish, drink or dessert for Friday night potluck dinner. All meals outside of Friday dinner will be provided in the dining hall. Saturday night, we'll be having a full buffet style dinner with plenty of fixin's. We aren't going to scrimp on the food, of course! Saturday night dinner is especially awesome, we do grilled steak, oven baked potatoes and this year we are adding a couple more items to the main dishes for Saturday night. We will offer folks the chance to come Saturday night only. Your Saturday night entrance fee will include dinner and a Saturday overnight stay. And whatever you do, don't miss The Fetish Feud!!
Pricing SPACE IS LIMITED! Registration will be on a first paid-first served basis. If you wish to hold cabin space for yourself, pay your registration early. Because of high interest this year, we are going to have to be careful about registrations. Monthly Impact patronage donations CANNOT count toward this weekend. The weekend price is $60 per person. If you wish to attend Saturday night only (Sat 4pm - Sun 12pm), the price is $30 per person. You can also make payments for this event. Payments of $20 are due July 1st, August 1st & September 1st. If you fail to make any payment, your registration will be forfeit. (You may transfer your balance to someone else, though.) Please email us at events for more information. You must be pre-screened by Impact to attend this event. If you live outside of Memphis, please allow plenty of time for us to verify your references. Email events for any information about this event.
Schedule (updated 9/3/11):
Registration Begins, The fun starts here!
Meet, Greet and Welcome Message
Fuel up at the Potluck Dinner
Time to Play!
Brunch (light fare available at 8am for early risers)
Shibari 101 with Evan
Bullwhip Practice (outside)
Pony Play Demo (outside) Extra gear will be available for you to try out
Hussy does Henna (Tattoos)
Steak & Potato Plus More dinner
The Fetish Feud
Evening at the Moulin Rouge. Performances include "The Flying Trapeze" and "The Wicked Wedding"
Saturday Night Play Party
Brunch (light fare available at 8am for early risers)
October 7-11 Unholy Harvest Ottawa, Ontario, Canada www.unholyharvest.ca
An Unholy Harvest celebrates five years! Join us for the fifth edition of An Unholy Harvest, Canada’s only annual weekend event for leatherdykes, trans folks and kinky gals of all bent persuasions. The unholiness awaits you in Ottawa from October 7-10, 2011! What you can expect: • An exciting Friday-night event to kick off the experience. Our theme this year is Cirque du Sado. Details below! • Three play parties that cap off each night of the weekend in a fully equipped dungeon. • Two days packed with BDSM and kink workshops, both hands-on and theoretical, with skilled presenters from all over Canada. • Film screenings, erotica readings and various other pervy ways to pass the time when you’re not busy making new friends, learning new tricks and getting laid. • A diverse crowd of friendly, kinky queers who are really darned nice! 280
And awfully sexy. We run the gamut from freshly hatched kinkster to leather veteran, so don’t be shy if this is your first time… you won’t be the only one. As for this year’s theme... Step right up! Buy a ticket for the big top and slip into the glitz and glam of our sexy, pervy circus party! This year, Harvest lets loose the dark and dirty side of the circus. Friday night’s kickoff will let you step through the funhouse mirror and soak up a world of mystery, artifice and sleight-of-hand. That night, the people wearing the best “Cirque du Sado”-inspired get-ups—ringmasters, trapeze acts, big cats, contortionists, magicians and more—will win prizes, decided by applause. Whether you win or not, expect much cheerful lechery and heartfelt appreciation for your look and your creativity. Costumes are not obligatory, but they sure are fun! Need more convincing? Check out our testimonials page to see what past attendees have said about the event! Remember, spaces are limited and the price is right—we’re grassroots gals and we aim to keep things affordable. But an Unholy Harvest has grown every year thus far, and we fully expect to sell out. Register as soon as possible to make sure you get in on the action! Here are some updated details as of September 1. • Early-bird registration is over, but full-price registration is ongoing. For the first time this year, we have a full online registration system! Check out our registration page for details. • Applications to volunteer and to present workshops at this year’s event are now closed. Thanks to everyone who has stepped up to help out! • Scholarship applications are closed for 2011. Travel fund applications remain open until all funds are awarded. Check out our travel fund page for details. • Check out our accessibility page for information on the range of measures we’re taking to make Harvest more accessible for people with dis/abilities. • For history buffs, we’ll soon be adding a history section to the site soon so you can see how Harvest got started and what the first four 281
years were like. An Unholy Harvest is open to women (including trans women) and trans-identified folks who respect and honour a women’s play space and who feel they have a place among leatherdykes. We can’t wait to see you in October!
October 7-9 American Brotherhood Weekend New Orleans, Louisiana, USA www.americanbrotherhood.com
ABW/American Brotherhood Weekend is going to be celebrated Columbus Day Weekend, 2011! We are back at the Leather Archives & Museum in Chicago, Oct. 7-9, 2011. Register now for the American Brotherhood Weekend! — Take advantage of our Labor Day sale: $80.00 for a weekend package, includes a play party Saturday night ! Check out the recommended area hotels here!
ABW, a celebration of the bonds we share as a Leather family of men and women will take place in and around iconic Chicago Leather institutions: including established Leather bars in the city, and the Leather Archives and Museum, the definitive library, museum and archive of our history as Leatherfolk. On the final day of the weekend, held in the the main theatre of the LA&M, one outstanding contestant is chosen from each category to represent the honored titles, American Leatherman, American Leatherwoman, and American Leatherboy. These titles personify the core of ABW. ABW has now become a celebration of the bonds we share as a Leather family. It’s a weekend filled with great excitement, camaraderie, and fun. And as any of the hundreds of men and women who have attended ABW will say, the key element in all three of those…..is you. We’ve been working hard to put together a fantastic weekend for you, and we’d love to have you join us here in Chicago.
October 9 DC Fetish Ball Washington, DC, USA www.dcfetishball.com DCFB & The Metro Underground Present " CIRQUE " An Enticement of the Mind, Body, & Spirit... Inspired by the beauty & intrigue of Cirque du Soliel, this year's ball will bring together some of the area's very best models, fashion, DJ's, & live entertainment - all accented w/ an incredible play space in one of the city's most lavish venues. THIS is a night you won't want to miss! 285
Coming Sunday, October 9th (Over Columbus Day Weekend): Hosted at the beautiful & spacious Ultra Bar - well recognized as one of the best clubs in DC. Doors open at 9pm. Must be 18+ / 21+ to drink.. Attire is in Theme, Fetish Fabulous, Leather, Latex, PVC, Corsets, Black Tie, Exotic/Erotic. Expect an evening of decedent elegance so dress to impress! DJ's spin on all 3 levels. Professional demo's run throughout the night. Special fundraiser to benefit the National Coalition of Sexual Freedom (NCSF). After-Party immediately follows the main ball. For more, see info below & on the rest of the site. For other events & happenings from across the scene, see The Metro Underground. Facebook Event Page. Fetlife Event Page. DC's Most Scandalous Affair! ~ At Ultra Bar ~ Offering 3 Full Floors of Exotic Possibility
• • •
Club Level (Main Ballroom): Featured Entertainment, Top DJ's, Dancing, & Go Go… Join us in the main ball room for high-energy performances by Electrocute. Special fetish fashion show by Passional, Slyx, & select others. Featured DJ's: Dirty-B (Power-Noise/Industrial), Mindcage (EBM/Electro), Vlad (Synthpop/EBM), London Shadows (Old School Goth), Cosmo (Synthpop/Darkwave), Adam Gieger (Electro/Trance-pop), & Jay Shok (Electro/EDM). GoGo's on the side-stage. Pre-show performance run throughout the night. Mezzanine (to the back of the club): overlooking the Main Ballroom.
• Mezzanine Lounge w/ Bottle Service overlooking the main club, stage, & dance floor. Second Level (Lounge): Social Play Space & Dungeon ... • Move upstairs to our well equipped play-space for a sense of absolute possibility & decadent desire. • Dungeon hosted by D~X~S Rapture w/ Vac-Bed by SLYX. • Featuring Mistress Tyler, Brendan Lear, Madam Ember, & Mistress Dolphy. • Special presentation of midnight body shots by The Metro Underground. • Special scene play by some of our scene's most erotic couples. • Offering social play space & dancing w/ music by featured DJ's. Third Level: The Lifestyles Lounge… • Lifestyle Play Space offering Featured Demo's, Electric Play, Full 287
Body Suspension, Sybian, & more. • Rope Demo by Master Oni. Fire Demo by New World Sparrow. Violet Wand by Dark Electric. • DJ spinning EBM, Trance, & Erotic Rhythm. Also providing a separate bar & a more discreet dance floor.
October 12-19 Sun and Spank Tampa, Florida, USA www.dommetrips.com
12th – 19th October 2011 (7 nights) or 13th – 18th October 2011 (5 nights) This event is open to anyone to book. In the usual DommeTrips style we will be offering an environment where you can play 24/7 in sumptuous surroundings amongst cool, kinky and fun fellow pervs. Events will be going on throughout the event with the main nights being the Friday night (14th Oct), sponsored by VON GUNTENBERG MAGAZINE, the Saturday night party (15th October) will be sponsored by SECRETROOM.NET, and the Sunday night play party (16th Oct) will be sponsored by CLUB SUBVERSION from London. The event will be held in the beautiful surroundings of Club Caliente in Tampa, Florida. For more information on theme nights CLICK HERE >> Oct.12 – Oct.19 2011 SEVEN NIGHTS Couple 7 nights – $1750 Single 7 Nights $1350 – single traveller? Click HERE SIX NIGHTS Couple 6 nights – $1445 Single 6 Nights $1165 – single traveller? Click HERE FIVE NIGHTS Couple 5 nights – $1225 Single 5 Nights $950 – single traveller? Click HERE FOUR NIGHTS Couple 4 nights – $950 Single 4 Nights $825 – single traveller? Click HERE THREE NIGHTS Couple 3 nights – $825 Single 3 Nights $700 – single traveller? Click HERE 50% deposit required to secure your reservation – balance payable on 28th August 2011 (full payment required to book after the 28th August) Features: ~ Exclusive events for our group – for events and themes CLICK HERE >> ~ A full dungeon set up in a villa with furniture and there’s a hot tub at the dungeon. 290
~ Poolside djs mashing up a mix of sexy international house music for that south beach vibe ~ water and sand volleyball courts ~ outdoor BBQ grill · hamburgers · hotdogs etc ~ Poolside drink service and servers ~ vip cabanas · daybeds · bottle service – For VIP Cabana or Bottle Service Reservations please call (813) 675-4465 after booking your trip ~ a massive 250,000 gallon pool and a relaxing waterfall with a 23,000 gallon pool and hot tub on the upper deck. ~ RAIN or SHINE – an indoor nightclub adjacent to the pool (if it starts to rain, we simply move the party inside) ~ Fitness Room including Yoga, Pilates, Aerobics Classes etc. ~ Spa Services ~ Pool tables ~ Disco ~ Tennis Courts ~ Piano Bar ~ Karaoke ~ Water Volleyball Courts ~ Sand Volleyball Courts, ~ Fully Stocked Liquor Bars with Happy Hours Specials ~ 2 Restaurants
To book call 00-1-980-613-2294 291
Feel free to leave voicemail there for a return call for booking info. We accept paypal, wire transfer, checks, and money orders. The price includes your hotel room on the property, admission on the grounds with all of the pools, the disco, all the fetish parties, fashion shows, and access to ALL the dungeon parties. Airport transfers are $65.00 each way per couple (unfortunately its the same for a single) or $130 for the round trip and must be paid in advance (a cab will cost approx $90 each way) . We would advise that hiring a car would be more cost effective. Please be aware that this resort is NOT all inclusive. You can put money on a room debit card to carry around with you for food and alcohol purchases and the money is refundable if you donâ€™t use it all. You MUST book via DommeTrips.com not the resort to gain entry to the parties and be part of the event.
Day Rates If you just want to come and sample the delights of the resort and join our kinky group for the day the rates are as follows: Couple $100 for all day Couple $40 after 6pm to 3am Single male $100 no matter what time you check in to 3am Single Female $25 no matter what time you check in to 3am If you donâ€™t plan on renting a car, please call Chuck from Fun Shuttle at 813-909-4042 to make arrangements in advance for your travel plans 292
to and from the airport. HOW TO BOOK: email or call us to book your stay or day visit Email 00-1-980-613-2294 If you have questions please do not hesitate to ask via Email or call us! 00-1-980-613-2294
October 14-16 Rio Grande Leather Weekend & Title Contest Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA www.riograndeleather.org
October 14-16 Butchmanns Experience Pansexual Weekend Phoenix, Arizona, USA www.butchmanns-experience.org 293
â€˘Butchmanns comes to Desert Dominion! October 14-16, 2011 The Butchmanns Experience is an intensive educational weekend designed to provide an opportunity for self-discovery in pursuit of self-actualization. The event includes hands-on training in basic SM practices, protocol and rituals, and a view of leadership and obedience through the lens of Master/slave dynamics. Butchmanns Experience allows us to explicitly visit areas that challenge and soothe us for the purpose of identifying who we are. Happiness comes from living authentically. When we are ready to be who we truly are, we encounter the next step on our path. The emphasis of activities is on personal transformation and growth and includes intentional flogging, ritual temporary piercing, the call to serve and be served, and transformational mummification. These activities are further explored through in-depth discussions. The environment is structured to encourage safely entering new experiences, with the instructors and staff supporting each individualâ€™s unique experience. Details This event is Pansexual and open to all gender/sexual identities and expressions. $250 for first-time participants ($225 early registration) $200 for repeat participants ($175 early registration) ~ Send an email to email@example.com to receive your enrollment form ~ Meals during the event are included. Discounted hotel rates are available once registration is approved. The hotel provides transportation to and from the airport. Transportation between the hotel and the facility can be arranged. Space is limited and your spot is secured once we receive your fees. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for further information. More Information: Desert Dominion: Desert Dominion is an educational and social group whose focus is 294
providing information and education for people interested in the BDSM lifestyle. Desert Dominion gives people a chance to talk with like-minded adults confidentially about BDSM topics and practices. Butchmanns Experience: Butchmanns Experience is under the umbrella organization Butchmanns, Inc., a 501 (c) (3) non-profit educational organization dedicated to self-actualization and the ending of suffering. Butchmanns facilitates and fosters spiritual growth and transformation by providing grants and educational opportunities to those often wrongfully stigmatized for their sexual expression, non-traditional relationships and/or unconventional spiritual practices. Butchmanns promotes the use of physical practices and the conscious exchange of personal power for spiritual awareness. We recognize all life-affirming spiritual paths as valid, affirm all mutually beneficial relationships as inherently sacred, and embrace adults of every age, race, body type, physical ability, sexual orientation, and gender identity.
OctRoperFest 2011 Friday, Oct. 21 - Sunday, Oct. 23, 2011 Austin, Texas http://www.octroperfest.com/overview.html
What can you expect? Great presentations, awesome food, friendly conversations, Texas brewed dark beer, live music, and whole heap of fun! Friday night: BBQ, Bock and Bondage Welcome dinner, ROPE 101 class, live music and play party! We kick things off right with a fabulous Texas BBQ dinner featuring Bock beer, and a live music performance featuring Dale Watson. You will get your welcome packets and event ID's, have the opportunity to shop with our outstanding vendors, brush up your basic skills with Senor Jaime's ROPE 101 class, and the chance to play in a unique Austin location featuring both indoor and outdoor bondage stations. Saturday: Classes will be held all day including presentations from, Zamil, Mark Yu, BossBondage, tomo, David Masterson, Mick & Dee Luvbight and TravisPhotos. 15 classes spread throughout the day on three tracks with ample time for chatting with new friends, feasting on local Austin fare, and choosing those perfect items to take home with you from our vendors. Saturday night: We will feature a performance by Zamil during our open play party. Practice all you learned in the classes that day, while getting to know your fellow participants better. Plenty of hard points and dedicated floor space as well as crosses, benches and massage tables for fusion-bondage bdsm will be available for your creative use. Sunday: Wrapping things up and doing it right. We start the morning with a sumptuous brunch and jump right into two consecutive classes with presentations by Zamil and BossBondage. Then it's our monthly open AustinROPE meeting with three hours of practice and play time. We'll be drawing for fabulous prizes too! Cost: UPDATED: $109 per person. This includes dinner on Friday, brunch on Sunday, plus all event classes and the party. 296
A Pansexual BDSM Institute of Higher Yearning October 21, 22 & 23, 2011 - Chicago, IL http://www.kinkykollege.com/mainframset.htm
Attend Kinky Kollege and learn from the top authors of BDSM Books & Videos in the Nation. Educational Classes & Workshops, Book Signin's, Meet The Author Parties, Meet & Mingle Socials, & 2 Fantastic Play Parties!
NEW ORLEANS OCTOBER 29th 2011, The House of Blues New Orleans â€œThe Endless Night Vampire Ball is like a Venetian Masque Ball 297
meets a Vampire Court,with the energy of a rock concert and the elegance of a burlesque cabaret!”
WHEN: SATURDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2011 WHERE: SOUTH POINT HOTEL & CASINO HOURS: 10pm – 4am ….. 21 & over TICKETS: DISCOUNT TICKETS are available now through Paypal and the South Point Box Office. Click HERE and follow the instructions to get your TICKETS now. New Venue for Halloween Ball 2011 There’s no more room at the Hard Rock, so it’s on to a bigger, newer, less cramped location. The 16th ANNUAL FETISH & FANTASY HALLOWEEN BALL moves to the SOUTH POINT HOTEL & CASINO in 2011, with nearly twice as much space available to allow for the spectacular growth of this event. 2010 at the Hard Rock was only 200 shy of a complete sell out with 7000+ of our closest friends partying their brains out at the coolest Halloween event in the country. At the SOUTH POINT we will be able to offer CHEAPER TICKET PRICES, CHEAPER DRINKS, bigger, more luxurious, CHEAPER HOTEL ROOMS, and all the space we need to grow as the nations largest, baddest, Halloween Party for Adults. 298
Named as “ONE OF THE TOP 10 EVENTS IN THE WORLD” by the Travel Channel, “ONE OF 5 EVENTS TO ATTEND BEFORE YOU DIE” by Maxim Magazine, “THE WORLDS WILDEST HALLOWEEN PARTY” by Bizarre Magazine, and “THE MOST ADULT OF THE ADULT HALLOWEEN EVENTS IN VEGAS” by the Las Vegas Weekly, the 2011 Fetish & Fantasy Halloween Ball at the SOUTH POINT will be #1 on everyone’s MUST ATTEND list and will surely be a hotbed of CELEBRITY WHO’S WHO’S. If you’ve always wondered what a Vegas Party is supposed to be like, or if you’re one of our regular attendees, you will be blown away by the 2011 Fetish & Fantasy Halloween Ball; guaranteed to be the LARGEST and most exciting ADULT Halloween event in VEGAS HISTORY!!! RULES: Click on DRESS CODE to see what is acceptable attire for the ball. Cameras will be allowed, but no video recorders. NO NUDITY or LEWD ACTIVITY will be tolerated. To look for yourself in the crowd, or to see some of the wild antics from previous years, click PICTURES FROM THE BALL. Performers for the SIXTEENTH Annual Fetish & Fantasy Halloween Ball will be announced as they are signed, so check back occasionally to see who will be performing. SIGN UP ON OUR MAILING LIST to receive discount offers and updates as they occur. We’ll see you at the Ball…
A Dungeon Masquerade By Andrew
What better way to celebrate Halloween than with a Dungeon Masquerade and everyone dressed in there favorite erotic costumes and all masked for the event. Find a good location like a warehouse, an eire old big house, a big creepy barn or if weather is right a nice dark woods. Now let's remember that we can cover all of our favorite scenes and fetish's and we can add some of the older devices to add a spark to the environment such as the iron maiden, torture rack, and all of our favorite toy's... For lighten, use a lot of candles and black lights if possible, now set up each section to fit in with each scene making sure that at each section there is room for multiple participant's. For example in one section we would have St Andrew's Cross and with it a table in the middle a suspension polly set up along with various other appropriate toy's, now in the center set up the chair and horse along with a few cages for toy's use one's that will stimulate the body such as the violent wand and shock sticks, feathers, ice, 300
candles,ect.. Now for the next section let's use some of the older devices, such as the rack, iron maiden, I would also add something for water play in this area as well, in most case this section will be used only by those that are into extreme bdsm but will be one that many will watch. Now for the center part, let's set this area up with an alter a couple of coffins a suspended cage and cross and lot's of candles, then at the stroke of midnight after you have a few volunteers have them all role play A ritual type scene with drum beat ritual type of music that will get everyone worked up...
Make sure to have plenty of room for a dance floor, and have everyone bring their favorite drinks and food. Make this a nite to remember and I am sure you will have a blast and will be talked about for months to come.
A few mask and costume ideas
Above all else have fun enjoy and be safe....
My Porcelain beauty By: Andrew A porcelain beauty, Dressed for display, Tonight we shall play, And you will obey, As I turn the key and wind you up, Can you see how much fun this will be, As the curtain is drawn, I lay you down upon a bed of nails, Working your body with a leather strap, Till I hear your soft cries of pleasure, Will you dance for me now, As you have never danced before, And no other but me, As I bind you your wrist to the hook, And slowly raise you up off the bed of nails, As I slowly work my way up, With soft gentle kissâ€™s, And tantalizing bites, As I part your moist wet lips, With a cold metal rod, Now it is time for you to dance for me, As I bring the paddle across your bare checks, With each cry and moan, You feel your inner folds spark with electricity, As I step back and watch you dance, 303
To your own sounds of pleasure, Knowing that with each moan and cry, The electricity will flow, Stimulating And Vibrating, Pushing you till you explode, As I remove the device & bring you back down, With gentle hands, And kissâ€™s of plenty, My Porcelain beauty, You have pleased me well tonight.
(Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual, Transgender community)
Parents of Teen Suicide Victim Speak Out on Bullying By Andrew Harmon The parents of a high school freshman in Amherst, N.Y., who killed himself told CNN that their son had endured pervasive antigay bullying beginning in fifth grade, both at school and particularly online. Jamey Rodemeyer, 14, committed suicide Monday in the Buffalo, N.Y., suburb. “He had the biggest heart in that little body,” Rodemeyer’s mother, Tracey, told CNN's Anderson Cooper Wednesday. “He was either loved so sincerely or he was bullied. There wasn’t much in between.” Much of the bullying Jamey faced, Tracey Rodemeyer said, occurred not in school but via Facebook and other social media sites. "Because people can access each other in numbers so readily — it’s still accessible for people to do their bullying.” “We need to get a better a system in our school district, in our school systems, to get rid of these bullies. Because it’s a rampant problem,” 306
Rodemeyer’s father, Tim, said. (Watch the CNN video below.) Rodemeyer’s death came just two days before a second-annual conference on bullying hosted by the Department of Education in Washington, D.C., one attended by educators and LGBT anti-bullying advocates such as Tammy Aaberg, who lost her son, Justin, to suicide in 2010. Aaberg was among a group of advocates who met last week with Minnesota representative Michele Bachmann’s district office and urged the congresswoman to come out against the multiple youth suicides in her own district. Bachmann said last week on the presidential campaign trail that school bullying “is not a federal issue.” “I think Congresswoman Bachmann is in a leadership role to speak out against bullying,” Aaberg The Advocate last week. “I’m not asking her to change her beliefs. But all kids should be protected in school.” Rodemeyer, a devout Lady Gaga fan who found inspiration and strength in the pop star's music, said in an “It Gets Better” video that he faced bullying at every turn. “No one in my school cares about preventing suicide, while you're the ones calling me 'faggot' and tearing me down,” Rodemeyer later wrote online to those who harassed him prior to his death. In a message to her 13.7 million Twitter followers, Lady Gaga tweeted Wednesday, “I am meeting with our President. I will not stop fighting. This must end. Our generation has the power to end it.” “Trend it,” she wrote, adding the hashtag #MakeALawforJamey. Legislation to expressly prohibit discrimination in schools on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity has been in the works for some time 307
— a House version of the Student Nondiscrimination Act was reintroduced earlier this year by Rep. Jared Polis of Colorado, with the Senate companion bill introduced by Sen. Al Franken of Minnesota. “[W]hat I want is for schools to have a policy against bullying—and that parents would have a right of action, kids would have a right of action against the school district,” Franken told The Advocate in July. “Once you give a right of action, schools know they had better comply. So then they make a policy." MAP: Which Countries Enlist Gay Soldiers? The United States is now one of 26 countries worldwide that welcome gays and lesbians in the military, according to the Palm Center. By Scott McPherson
All laws are not created equal. The Palm Center notes that some of the countries listed are "questionable cases" — Czech Republic, Estonia, Ireland, Italy, Lithuania, Slovenia, Switzerland and Germany. In Italy, for example, a gay soldier could still be discharged if their sexual orientation becomes a disruption to their unit. 308
In the map above, countries in red allow gays and lesbians to serve openly. Here's a complete list of countries that the Palm Center includes: Australia Austria Belgium Canada Czech Republic Denmark Estonia Finland France Germany Ireland Israel Italy Lithuania Luxembourg Netherlands New Zealand Norway Slovenia South Africa Spain Sweden Switzerland UK United States Uruguay
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