You Found Me Earth, a meditation Insight Accepting Love S.J. Tucker Cold Soothing Tea The Elemental Pentagram Brigid of Kildare My Zombie Valentine Events
“Earth Is My Body” February 2011 Volume II • Issue 2 ™• February 2011 • Volume II
™• February 2011 • Volume II
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Our goal at Pagan Edge is to provide readers a high quality, timely magazine with content relevant to modern pagans’ lifestyle and passions. Our publication is a lifestyle magazine so while we may publish spells, rituals, and some magick how-to; we aim to focus on ways that pagans, wiccans, earth-based-spiritualists, and those of like mind can incorporate their values and beliefs into their everyday living. Pagan Edge Magazine & paganedge.com exist solely to offer information to our readers. The publisher, editor, and the entire personnel of Pagan Edge, Pagan Edge Magazine, Personal Visions, Refraction Design and paganedge.com cannot be held responsible for misuse of any information provided. The views expressed in the articles and ads are solely those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of Pagan Edge Magazine. Product descriptions, recipes & any how-to information: While we, and our affiliates, attempt to provide accurate information in the magazine and on the site, we do not warrant that the content on this site will be accurate, complete, reliable, current, or error-free. It is your sole responsibility for the use of the content of this Magazine or web site. For additional details please see www.paganedge.com
™• February 2011 • Volume II
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™• February 2011 • Volume II
contents 6 Dream Weaving Earth Is My Body 8 Elders Corner Earth, a meditation 9 Plant Vibes Out of the Saucepan and into the Cold War
10 Note This Music Review on S.J. Tucker
On The Cover: model: Elise photographer & effects: EWVanderBerg
11 101 Insights 12 Keeping the Edge You Found Me 14 Pentragram Earth as an
Element in the Manifestation Process
16 PE Book Review My Valentine Zombie Brigid of Kildare
17 Fabulous Familiar Brigid the Cat 18 Urban Shaman Accepting Love Candle Spell
20 Wheel of Happenings Events Calendar
VOLUME II • ISSUE 2 • FEBRUARY 2011 “EARTH IS MY BODY” PAGAN EDGE™ IS PUBLISHED MONTHLY BY PERSONAL VISIONS ADMIN@PAGANEDGE.COM ™• February 2011 • Volume II
Dream Weaving Earth Is My Body Our February issue of Pagan Edge is dedicated to earth as an element; not Earth as our beloved planet. Not to worry, greenmen and women of flora and fauna, we will get our save-theplanet-groove on in our April issue and hug some trees. For right now, we are talking about the stuff in our gardens and drives, under our feet — the soil, dirt, clay, and sand. What type of earth do you find yourself standing on? Our readers in the northern latitudes may find their ground colder than usual, frozen or even covered with snow. Perhaps your most recent connection with earth was digging into it with shovel, snowbrush, or even fingers to find traction for your car’s tires to grab onto. How our northern readers may envy those at southern latitudes this month as the heat of summer draws them to the lakeside and ocean beach. Instead of digging through ice-infiltrated soil, they are digging their toes through the sun-warmed sand as it, in return, warms their bodies. Our connection to earth is as old as (well, perhaps even older than) us. Although we do not have roots as the trees do, our connection is as deep. It is no wonder we use the tree image to represent this connection.
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Genesis, the first book of the Bible, is not the only story of humankind forming from earth itself. Stories and myths of humankind fashioned from clay come to us from worldwide sources, including from the Shilluks of the Nile, the Blackfeet Native American tribe, and the Chinese. Wandering around many Pagan festivals, one will often hear the chant beginning, “Earth is my body...” Just as there are many variations and versions of this common story, there are many different colors and textures of earth, thus reflected by the people who live upon it. Some earth is yellow or red or black or something in between. Some earth is dry or pebbly or wet or fine, and often a combination. Some earth can be easily maleable and formed to our desires, while some earth is hard-as-rock (literally) and stubborn to chisel or resistant to outside influences. What type of earth are you formed of? As this issue is dedicated to the element earth, we will also bring you issues dedicated to air, fire, and water, the second month of each quarter in 2011. What about the fifth element? What about spirit? Dear readers, each and every issue is dedicated to spirit — to your spirit, to mine and our PE staff, to The Great Universal Spirit which flows within and without each of us and connects us all together in the world community. Happy reading and blessings, ~jess*ca
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From the Elders Corner by Lucille M Rose
North manifestation materialization stability prosperity security physical body strength winter midnight 8
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Life is a like a roller coaster ride. It has its ups-and-downs — that is what makes it interesting. Without the ups-and-downs we would merely be existing. According to Eckhart Tolle those are the moments when we are in the “Now”. For the past few months we have been busy. So many things to be accomplished as the hours rush by in what seems like minutes. We feel the “Now” moment way too frequently and way too much.
Quite often we do not take the necessary time out of our hectic schedules to recharge ourselves. We push the limits of our energy until we have reached a point where the colds, flus and body aches hit us like a ton of
bricks; then we are absolutely shocked this has happened! This is the time when we really need to sit by ourselves and engage in a quiet meditation or perhaps light a candle, soak in a bathtub filled with warm fragrantly scented water, and make a good cup of tea… perhaps valerian root or chamomile anyone? I cannot provide you with the bath. However for those who would like to do a meditation continue reading… You have several options at this point. You can read the following meditation out loud or silently to yourself, you can ask someone to read it to you or you can record it and play it when you are ready. Find a place where you will not be disturbed for ten to twenty minutes. Get comfortable. Meditation continued on page 22
Mischievious Soojsayer: Music Review by V.L.
Born in Arkansas, U.S., S.J. Tucker (also known as Sooj and Skinny White Chick) was raised in a family of artists. Influenced by her family and artists outside of the house, Tucker grew up singing. In college, she became a singersongwriter. However, she denied the mainstream and remained true to her roots. In return, she was blessed with the opportunity to share her art with others – and act upon it. From the depths of her voice and hands springs forth music of all kinds, singing her praises to the Path and all that comes with it.
Mythpunk is folklore and myths combined with postmodern day fantasy techniques; such as non-linear storytelling and urban fantasy. Tucker has been working with Catherynne M. Valente (author). Valente has written The Orphan’s Tales and Palimpsest. Tucker released albums to accompany the books. In 2007, Tucker and Valente’s work were released on the same day to further strengthen their collaboration. They still work together today. Despite being so busy over the years, she found time to release albums.
Tucker didn’t start out as a solo artist; her first band was Skinny White Chick, whom released one EP. (An EP is generally a CD containing twentyfive minutes of music or four tracks; not counting alternative versions of the songs.) In 2002, Tucker released another EP, performing along side Stout, titled Skinny & the Semi-pros. It was in 2004 that she released a self-produced album titled Haphazard. It came to be one of their highly acclaimed pieces of work. It was also the point at which she decided to make music her full time occupation.
Tucker is also a member of Tricky Pixie. The band was founded in 2006 and features Betsy Tinney and Alexander James Adams. The trio’s first performance was in the state of Washington, U.S.; which would produce their first album, Tricky Pixie – Live!. Due to clashing schedule amongst the three members, Tricky Pixie only performs in the summer and winter as of 2008. Despite this, the band recorded and released an album in 2009 titled Mythcreants.
Since then, Tucker has been running a blazing trail of dedication to her work. She’s shared the stage with numerous musicians, activists, and writers. Some of these people include SONA, Phyllis Curott, Gaia Consort, Catherynne M. Valente, Emerald Rose, and Rev. Barry W. Lynn. Due to this, her music grew over the years to incorporate not only neopaganism spirituality, but social activism and mythpunk fantasy. Our monthly featured artists can be heard
Influenced by the likes of Jeff Buckley, Joni Mitchell, and Ani DeFranco, Tucker now influences other aspiring Pagan musicians. Her music spans from electronica to spoken word to world fusion. S.J. Tucker still has plenty to offer; and plenty more to say to the world. Lend your ear to what Sooj has to say. S.J. Tucker can be found at http://www. skinnywhitechick.com, Facebook, and MySpace. on: www.myspace.com/paganedgemagazine ™• February 2011 • Volume II
Out of the Sauce Pan and into the
There are a multitude of plant derived soothers for symptoms of winter-related health woes, enough to fill many an herbal tome. But, let me share my personal herb-geek list of ones likely found in your kitchen, not ones you have to hunt down all over town when you’re feeling punky. Following are my top choices and some of their super powers, along with a basic recipe for a symptom soothing/chasing tea. Most have talents beyond what I show here, but the listed attributes will help you decide which ones to turn to when in the throes of your next cold. Create a custom blend based on your symptoms. Two to Four servings per day for three days generally do the trick! For my own self-doctoring I always use the ginger, garlic, lemon, honey and cayenne as my base. My best sore throat relief comes from sage, and cough-quieting relief from thyme. Fresh Gingerroot – helps ease muscle aches, coughing and mucus, while sweating out pathogens/reducing fever and opening sinuses. Fresh Garlic – eases cough, kills and sweats out pathogens/ reduces fever.
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by Dawn Sherwood
Fresh Lemon Juice (bottled will suffice) – Soothes sore throats and headaches. Boosts activity of other herbs listed here. Dried Sage – Germ killer, throat and cough soother. Honey (local and raw is best) – Germ killer, throat and cough soother. Booster of other herbs’ powers. Cayenne powder – Sinus opener, sweat promoter/fever reducer. Dried Thyme – Eases coughs and muscle aches, soothes sinuses. Cinnamon – strong fever reducer. Cloves – strong fever reducer.
In a saucepan bring 8 ounces of water to boil then remove from heat and stir in chosen ingredients, in quantities suggested below. Cover and let steep for 10 to 15 minutes, then strain into your favorite mug through a coffee filter or tea sieve. Curl yourself up in a blankie and sip slowly. 1 tsp. Fresh Gingerroot 1 tsp. Fresh Garlic 2-3 Tbsp. Fresh Lemon juice (bottled will suffice) 1 Tbsp. Dried Sage 2-3 Tbsp. Honey (local and raw is best) Pinch of Cayenne powder 1 tsp. Dried Thyme One-half tsp. Cinnamon 2-3 Whole Cloves
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Keeping the Edge
by Mya Om
Palace Tomb of Petra
You Found Me
I first began to form my touchstone1 with Earth on a desert highway in the middle of the night. I was a passenger in the backseat of a white Hertz rental van. We were driving through the Negev Desert. Everyone but me and the driver – an evangelical Christian named David, who I met in a law and religion course at a Jewish Religious University a few weeks earlier - was asleep. I was the only Pagan, the other passengers a former-Jew-now-Muslim and a Mormon-missionary-turnedlaw-student. Yes we were an interesting bunch – but that is a story for another day. I was looking out the window at the shifting desert landscape and thinking. There was 12
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nothing for miles - only the road, sand, and the occasional mountain in the distance. From the window of the van it appeared as if the sky and the stars could swallow a mountain or at the very least our tiny van. Despite the fact that I was in a car with three other people, and my companion in the back seat had shifted so his head was on my shoulder, I felt as if I was the only person in the world. In the morning we planned to cross the Israeli border at Eilat and head to Petra 2: an ancient city an hour or so across the Jordanian border. The journey to the legendary city should have been on my mind, but instead all I could think about was the desert – something about the emptiness of it called
to me. It felt perfect, vast, empty, and representative of all that Earth should be. A few weeks later I was back in the Negev, this time on an early morning bus from Tel Aviv, heading once more to Eilat. Again, what consumed my thoughts on the long ride was the desert. This time it was bathed in early morning sunlight and the vastness of it seemed tainted. In the morning light I could see the dots of settlements in the distance, the power lines that ran along the road, and the occasional gas station/rest-stop. I was not moved in those moments as I had been on the same road, just a few weeks earlier. I felt no connection with Earth. The Found continued on page 23
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THE PENTAGRAM OF MA N I F ESTATION 4 • SPIRIT Connecting Force
2 • AIR Thought
5 • EARTH Physical World
Shenandoah National Park, Virginia ™• February 2011 • Volume II
1 • WATER Emotion
3 • FIRE Transformation
©2007, Tootie Marie Imagery
Article & Photos by Tootie Marie Imagery
An Element In The Pentagram Of Manifestation
The Final Element In The Manifestation Process
This is the first in a five part series dealing with the Manifestation Process as it is made whole by the five elements - Water, Air, Fire, Spirit, and Earth; and how we can trace these elements along the lines of the pentagram. Each element can be seen as an important part in the process of manifestation. The elements are listed in the order in which we bring our emotions into physical being. Water is the element of Emotions; Air is the element of Thought; Fire is the element of Transformation; Spirit connects us to everything; and Earth is the element of the Physical World. The Manifestation Process is continually happening whether we are conscious of it or not. Hopefully this series of articles will make you more aware of the process of manifestation. We will also be making a deep connection with each element as we follow through this course. These articles are being written out-of-order, so to speak, so that the element being highlighted is in accordance with the topic of discussion for the month. Our topic this month is Earth. Therefore we
begin our series with the final element in the Manifestation Process: Earth. Before we begin concentrating on the Earth element, please take a few minutes or so to think of an object you have in your possession that ties you to Earth. Make sure it is something you can hold in your hands - something you can carry with you, if you EARTH IN THE wish. A special stonePROCESS or crystal OF MANIFESTATION will work very well. Find this special object, and keep it in your hands ARTICLE as we concentrate on Earth. Make yourself comfortable. If you’re not already doing so, pick up your “Earth object” and hold on to it. Relax. Ground and center yourself. In your mind’s eye, you will concentrate strongly on the Earth element in order to manifest its energy and power. By doing this, you are producing links and channels for the energy to move through. Earth: the element of the Physical World. This is where everything eventually becomes manifest. It is the element of physical harmony. By making yourself aware of this process,
and choosing to be conscious of it, you have the chance to strengthen the progress of your most affirmative designs – to bring harmony and positive, effective manifestation to yourself and the Earth. Take your time as you go through the following steps, allowing what you see to develop at its own pace. In your mind, picture the natural, material world: the soil… the rocks… the trees… the plants… the animals. You can feel their abundance. See the mountains… and feel their strength. Search beneath the surface of the Earth – see the caves… the roots… the minerals… the crystals. You can feel how nurturing they are. Acknowledge the nature spirits… the plant and tree spirits… the Faeries… and other forces of nature. You know they are about, as you catch a glimpse of their active presence. You, yourself, are a natural being of Earth. You are a moving mountain, filled with your own strength, and made stronger still by all the features of Earth that surround you. Manifestation continued on page 24 ™™••February January 2011 • Volume II
The Pagan Edge
Book Review by Faelin Wolf
My Zombie Valentine
by Katie MacAlister, Angie Fox, Marianne Mancusi, & Lisa Cach, 2010 ISBN: 0843963603 February puts me in the mood for love! I wanted to ﬁnd something interesting and diﬀerent this month. So, we have My Zombie Valentine to celebrate our Valentine’s Day this year. I know, I know— zombies and love don’t exactly go together. But this book might change your mind! There are four stories by four paranormal romance authors, MacAlister, Fox, Mancusi, and Cach. MacAlister shares a story about a Dark One (or vampire) that finds his Beloved in Belle, a woman who is heavily entrenched in the paranormal. Belle has two souls, which makes her particularly interesting to demons. She also works as a counselor for zombies, or revenants. This is an interesting, if at times complicated, mix of the paranormal. I suspect that the story may be more meaningful to those who regularly read MacAlister’s books. Fox brings a voodoo story set in New Orleans. Amie is a strong, independent woman who owns her own voodoo shop and uses her magic to help others. All she lacks is a man to love and share her magic. She decides to cast a spell to draw her perfect man to her. And he comes! The only problem? He’s a zombie. I enjoyed this story the most, in part because of the
voodoo, but also because Fox casts a different light on what/who a zombie can really be. Mancusi’s story is another take on the classic zombie apocalypse. Scarlet lands a job as a make-up artist on a cheesy zombie flick that stars her long-time movie star crush, Mason. However, almost from the start, things are odd on the set. The extras are acting a little weird—shuffling around, attacking others, being distracted by the smell of chicken. The situation quickly deteriorates into something that feels like a zombie movie and it’s up to Scarlet and Mason to figure out how to escape…as they fall in love. Fun story! This one definitely made me laugh. Cach offers another interesting spin on zombies— as the victims of a plastic surgery experiment gone wrong! Angelica visits her roommate’s new boss’s plastic surgery office to get some minor work done. Dr. Velazquez persuades her to try his new Phi-Tox injections as well. Another surprise from her visit—she meets Tom, whom she finds both appealing and annoying and he begins to pursue her. Yet, her injection is causing some odd effects— it has migrated throughout her body, has caused unusual stiffness, and created a craving for anything sweet. Angelica discovers she is not the only one experiencing these problems—her roommate, Karen, and half the women in LA are suffering too! Tom becomes an unexpected ally to uncover what is really happening. Another very funny story with perhaps the best sex scenes. *wink* My Zombie Valentine is worth the read, for those who have a date for V-Day and especially for those who don’t! Book continued on page 27
™• February 2011••Volume VolumeIIII January 2011
“Brigid” the Cat Name: Brigid Nickname: Itty-Bitty-BitchyBridgie-Kitty Breed: Golden Maine Coon Birthday: May 5th, 2005 Guilty Pleasure: I love to watch dust, I could do it all day, as a matter of fact, I have. Ambition: To get on the other side of any door... no, the other side. Least Favorite Things: Vacuums, spray bottles, plastic bags, and dogs (all of which are scary). Favorite Activity: Playing with my “woobie stick”, it’s a fishing pole for cats and so much fun to chase and capture. Favorite TV Show: “Cats 101” on Animal Planet.
Jobs Before Being A Familiar: Adding nap to wool blankts, field researcher on feline family trees, creating rainbows
Favorite Book: “I Can Has Cheezburger? A LOLcat Celleckshun” Those crazy kittehs with bad grammar... I’m addicted.
Person I Admire: Marie Antoinette, Queen of France, rumored to be responsible for the stock from which Maine Coons were bred. I admire her poise, grace, laxity of court life, and fondness for all things shiny.
Sports Played: Extreme floor hockey in which a milk jug cap is slapped across the hardwood flooring in an attempt to sink it into the heat vent. “She shoots... she scores... the crowd goes wild...”
Favorite Resting Spot: When not lying in the garden, I knead any piece of clean clothing into a “cat nest”. Once it is covered with my fur, I quest for more clean laundry to lie upon. Craziest Thing I’ve Ever Done: While in pursuit of the “woobie stick”, I have done backflips, back half-twists, and actually flown through the room.
Favorite Movie: “Shrek 2”, with the debut of Puss In Boots Favorite Song to Sing to: “Magic” by Pussycat Dolls Rule I Like to Break: Be hospitable to family, friends, and guests What I Enjoy About Living The Pagan Lifestyle: Being named after a fiery, red-headed goddess and being allowed to act like one.
Submit your Fabulous Familiar’s photos & stats to firstname.lastname@example.org ™• February 2011 • Volume II
Illustration by Ankolie 18
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the Urban Shaman
by Michelle “Crowskin” Bond
Sometimes we turn bitter due to past relationships — feeling as if we will never find the “right one” for us.
undisturbed in a small bit of salt overnight. For quick use, wash it down with a bit of salt water, dry, and set aside.
Here is a spell aimed at reopening your heart to the possibilities of love; allowing yourself to heal over past hardships.
• A rose (or roses, depending on choice) matching the color candle.
Although this spell does not draw anyone specific to you, it does act as a positive affirmation to Life that you are ready to try again... leaving you with a specific token to help draw a better match to you. What you will need • Rose scented candles: one of the more potent modern symbols of love. Pick its color so it is either one or a combination of the ones listed below, depending on what you are trying to gain from the spell: White (for allowing yourself the ability to open to love) Red (for accepting the strong passions of love) Pink (for accepting the gentleness of love) • A token charm (piece of jewelry / stone / button) that reminds you of love, or a piece of rose quartz purified and left
• Also, any other symbolic items that are personal to you and representative to the type of love you wish to accept and open yourself to. This means you can put up photos of a time when you were deeply in love, images you found which match the love you wish to have, etc. This could be anything really. It has to be personal and strongly remind you of what you’re looking for. It is also a good idea to set up a valentine and write on it the attributes you are looking for, instead of any specific names. • Last, you need a small table or area on which you can lay things undisturbed for a while - an altar area. Make sure the area is covered with matching colors of cloth. For red candles and roses, use red underneath. For white, white underneath. This carries the energy of the color across to each aspect of
the spell. What to do First, cleanse the space where you will be setting up. You can smudge, call circle, air it out a few moments, or salt. Any method which just gets your area into a ritual state of working. If you feel like playing soft music you can. Just make sure it is appropriate to what you’re doing. Set up your altar: place a tablecloth matching your purpose. Sprinkle a little salt on it and then cover with another matching cloth. You can use prints as long as it remains appropriate. Little hearts, or a flowery print would work well here, as well as soft prints that are more romantic in nature. Set up your candle or candles in the middle. If using more than one candle from the choices listed previously, make sure they are at equal footing. Meaning: if you’re using two, then one on the right and one on the left. If using three, make a triangle, etc. You want to make sure each Love continued on page 26 ™• February 2011 • Volume II
Wheel of Happenings FEBRUARY 2011
2/1/11 - 2/2/11: Imbolq Druids Ring Grove/Desert Moon, Joshua Tree
2/2/11: Blessed Sabbat of Imbolc & New Moon of February 2 Circle of the Sublime Elm, Orlando 2/2/11: Imbolc Children of the Goddess coven, Ormond Beach 2/3/11: GAEA Sabbat - Imbolc, Jacksonville 2/5/11: Celebrate the Sabbat CircleOfOne, Largo 2/5/11: Imbolc Religious Order of the Circle of Isis Rising, Miami 2/5/11: Imbolc FDCOW, Pensacola 2/6/11: EarthFamilies CUUPS Imbolc Ritual EarthFamilies CUUPs, Lakeland 2/11/11: Valentine’s Dinner and Dance Temple of the Mystical Ancient Circle, Jacksonville 2/11/11 - 2/13/11: Brighid’s Fire Healing Today, Tampa Bay area 2/18/11: GAEA Esbat - Full Moon, Jacksonville 2/19/11: February Full Moon Celebration Circles in the Woods CUUPS, Tampa 2/23/11 - 2/27/11: MysticWays OstaraFest (MWC), Near Tampa 2/23/11 - 2/27/11: MysticWays OstaraFest MysticWays (MWC), Plant City 2/25/11: Wendy Rule & Kellianna Concert MysticWays Church, Plant City
2/3/11: Temple Dedication Ceremony Daughters of the Goddess 2/4/11 - 2/6/11: Candlemas Gathering for Women The Sacred Circle of Maidens, Mothers & Crones, Boulder Creek 2/5/11: Imbolc Raven’s Cry Grove, ADF, Thousand Oaks 2/11/11 - 2/14/11: Pagan Playdate @ PantheaCon Pagan Playdate, San Jose 2/20/11: Modern Roman Ritual Rabbit in the Moon, Newbury Park 2/26/11: Pagan Pizza Lunch The Santa Cruz Pagan Meetup, Santa Cruz England 2/1/11: The Ravens Rest Open Ritual for Imbolc The Ravens Rest, Leeds 2/2/11: Celebrating Imbolc with Bideford Pagans Bideford Pagans, Beaford 2/2/11: Imbolc Open Ritual - Chertsey The Cauldron of Cerridwen, Chertsey 2/7/11: Tarot Worskshop The Circle of Ankerwycke, Staines 2/19/11: The Derby Witan 2011 East Midlands Pagan Federation, Derby
If your festival is not listed here, please email us at email@example.com to have your listing added. 20
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Meditation continued from page 8
Breathe in slowly, counting one-two-three, and exhale slowly, counting one-twothree, breathe in slowly, counting one-two-three, and exhale slowly, counting onetwo-three. Repeat as you notice your body starting to relax... relax... relax… You are aware of the air that you are inhaling and exhaling.
You feel a pleasant warmth surrounding you. You hear the sound of a gently flowing brook and you walk slowly towards the sound. You walk up a small hill and there on the other side to your left is the brook. You walk down the small hill and sit next to the brook and watch the water flow over the rocks. You see the small smooth stones on the bottom of the brook. You allow yourself to place all your worries into the gently flowing water to be carried away from you. Take a cleansing breath and exhale slowly. You feel your shoulders rise up ever so slightly as the heavy weight is removed. You feel the solid earth covered with grass, dormant for the winter, beneath you. You look up and see the blue sky and white fluffy clouds. It is a very peaceful day. All your worries and cares are gone. 22
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You stand up and decide to take a journey. After walking for a short time, you see a huge forest to the north of you. You walk closer to the forest. A breeze moves the remaining leaves on the maple, oak, beech and ash trees. The gold and brown leaves sway gently, beckoning you, drawing you into the forest. The rustle of leaves sound like they are saying… “Come closer, come closer, come closer.” The pine trees filter out some of the sunshine, so there is less light in the forest, creating an illusion of mystery. You decide to explore the inner forest. Just ahead of you, you catch a movement between the trees. You hesitate. You wonder if there is something to fear. You realize there is nothing to fear, you are in a safe place because you are in a meditation. You ask yourself if it could be your spirit animal. You walk a bit faster, but very carefully as the soft forest floor is covered with fallen leaves, pine cones, small sticks, and stones of various sizes. You look ahead and again you see movement.
You call out “Are you my spirit animal?” There is no reply, but something steps from behind the tree and reveals itself to you. Yes… it is your spirit animal. You have seen this animal before and
you KNOW it is your spirit animal. Ask your spirit animal if there is a message for you. Listen; take notice of what it tells you. Then tell your spirit animal what YOU want, what YOU need, what YOU desire, what YOU think will make YOU happy. This is the time when you can speak your heart’s desires. Your spirit animal will listen to you. Your spirit animal is returning to its sanctuary and you know it is time to leave the inner forest and end the meditation. You walk out of the forest. It is midnight. You have been there longer than you thought. The moon is shining above you. Lighting the way for you. You hear the sound of the gently flowing brook.
You feel the solid earth, covered with grass that has gone dormant for the winter, beneath you. You feel pleasant warmth surrounding you. You are in your undisturbed place. You are aware of the air that you are inhaling and exhaling. It will be a very peaceful day. All your worries and cares are gone.
Found continued from page 12
But if I was still and really felt the landscape, the connection came alive and I was in tune. area looked dingy, vacant, and sandy. It did not live up to, in any way, the perfection I had built in my head. We checked into a hotel for the night, and one of my companions suggested we travel to King Solomon’s mines3. My companion spent thirty minutes convincing a taxi cab driver to take us to the park some 50 miles outside of the city and drive us around. He agreed to take us for the low low price of one hundred U.S. dollars, approximately four hundred shekels. As we drove through the park gates, I thought only the Israelis’ would classify rocks and a barren wasteland as a national park. It only took a few minutes in the park to change my mind. An hour later found me climbing a sheer rock face to reach the mines. I was half way up the side of the cliff, one foot dangling as I pulled myself up and tried to find a foothold when I experienced the same feeling of perfection I had in the van. The feeling continued as we wandered around the park and we made our way to the Temple and lake. Less than 24 hours later I had the feeling again near the top of Mount Sinai, when
a breeze hit my face just right, taking away the smell of camel dung, and drying the sweat dripping down my face. Less than ten minutes later I lost the connection again.
this article I use the term touchstone to refer to the creation of a mental image that I call up to connect or tune in to a particular element. Petra means rock in Greek. It is a city constructed entirely in and of red sandstone and is one of the new 7 wonders of the world. 2
My connection with Earth was like an intermittent connection through a badly tuned receiver. If I looked at the landscape around me through mundane eyes I lost the signal and felt nothing. But if I was still and really felt the landscape, the connection came alive and I was in tune. It is hard to sustain such a connection from day to day, minute to minute, or to call it up on demand. It was only when I was able to quiet my mind and focus that I was able to find an understanding of what Earth truly was to me: a windswept sandstone desert. When I meditate on Earth, and seek a connection with that element it is this desert image that comes to mind.
In Hebrew the area is called Mikhrot Shelomo ha-Melek and is located in Timna Park. It contains one of the oldest copper mines in the world dating back to 8000 BCE. The Pharohs of Egypt established their own mining operations there, and there is a manmade lake with an attached temple to Hathor. 3
Take a moment and quiet your mind, focus on earth and allow the image of your own personal touchstone to form. A touchstone is an assaying tool, used to examine or analyze. Commonly such touchstones are used to identify precious metals. In 1
Siq, passageway to Petra ™• February 2011 • Volume II
Manifestation continued from page 15
Escondido, California, 2006
Be aware of your body and the solidness of it. You can feel your bones… your skeleton… your flesh. These make up your supportive and protective framework, enabling you to touch and feel all that can be touched and felt. You sense the pull of gravity… the pull of your own weight… your attraction to Earth. The attraction grows stronger and you can feel Earth gathering you in. You merge with the animals… the trees… the flowers… the fruits… the grains… the grass. You merge with precious stones and minerals. You join with Earth itself: you join with the mud… the compost… the dust. Give thanks to Earth for its supportive energy. It is the place of experience, inner wisdom, and ancient knowledge. You can see and understand how Earth brings containment… fertility… and abundance. Now, focus on the “Earth object” you have been holding in your hands this entire time.
Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, Michigan, 2009
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Fix your attention to it. With all the good energy and vibes you now have going on, take time to remember why this was the object you chose to represent Earth. What makes it special? How does this object tie you to Earth? How does it represent the physical world? How does it represent physical harmony? Empower your “Earth object” with the energy you feel flowing through the links and channels created from your deep connection with Earth. In working through the exercise above, you have reinforced your awareness of the association you and the objects around you have with Earth. This also raises your consciousness of Earth as an important element in the Manifestation Process. You have an active part in this process. Celebrate Earth: remember to show your love for, and give thanks to Earth; for its fertility… for the food we eat… for the abundance of nature… for all its gifts, and the ways in which
Luray Caverns, Virginia, 2007
they manifest in our lives. Final Reflection: Take an inventory of what you are currently manifesting in your life. Is it leading to the outcome you want? If your answer is “Yes”, then find even more ways to help the continuity of this positive flow. If your answer is “No”, now is the time to redirect your intentions and focus on what needs to be accomplished so your desired result is strong and prosperous. Feel inspired, picture your needs and wants, enable the transformation, believe you deserve it and that it will happen. This is the power of positive manifestation. References: Kindred, G. (2001). Sacred Celebrations: A Sourcebook. Gothic Image Publications Starhawk (1989). The Spiral Dance: A Rebirth of the Ancient Religion of the Great Goddess. HarperCollins Publishers
Cottontail Rabbit, Colonial Williamsburg, Virginia, 2007 Photos © Tootie Marie Imagery
Upcoming Themes & Deadlines March 2011, theme: Magick Deadline: February 5th, 2011 April 2011, theme: Environment Deadline: March 5th, 2011 May 2011, theme: Air Element Deadline: April 5th, 2011
™• February 2011 • Volume II
Love continued from page 19 Love continued from page 19 candle is not given more space candle is not given more space than the other. While you are than the other. While you are setting up your candles, think setting your candles, think of whatupyou want to have in of what you want to have in your life love-wise. your life love-wise. Take your token into your hand Take yourthat token intotoyour and use hand lighthand the and use that hand to light the candles. candles. Take your token and place it in Take andorplace it in front your of thetoken candles, right next front the candles, right next to theofcandles afteror they are lit. to the candles after they are lit. Spend a moment touching the Spend moment the token aand affirmtouching to yourself token and affi rm to yourself strongly, either vocally or strongly, either vocally internally that you are worthy or of internally that you are worthy of love and that you resonate with love you resonate love.and Let that the token go, and with start love. Let the token go, start placing symbolic itemsand around placing symbolic around your candles (at aitems safe distance your candles (at a safe distance from the flame, but inside the from ame, inside the ritual the areaflof the but cloth). ritual area of the cloth).
™• February January 2011 2011••Volume VolumeIIII
With each item you place, With eachtake item youor place, internally a note speak internally take a note or speak why you are placing it. If it’s a why you are why placing If it’s a poem, speak it isit. included. poem, speak why it is included. Place nothing in the ritual space Place nothing in the ritual spacec which does not have specifi which does notsure have c meaning; make youspecifi affirm meaning; make sure you affi rm in your working exactly the in your working meanings and why.exactly the meanings and why. Take the rose or roses and hold Take or roses andThink hold themtheinrose your hands. them Think clearly, inor your speakhands. the saying clearly, or speak the saying below. below. “Roses bloom, and roses thorn, “Roses bloom, and roses thorn, Love was meant to be reborn.” Love was meant to be reborn.” Carefully pick off a few petals Carefully pick off a few petals and lay them over the token. and over the behind token. Thenlay lay them the rose down Then lay the rose down behind the candles. the candles.
Speak that you will be gentle Speak that you be to gentle to yourself, and will learn love to yourself, and learn to love yourself and those drawn to yourself those drawn to you withand more understanding you with compassion. more understanding and more That you and more compassion. That you wish to be open to love again, wish be good open times to loveand again, for alltothe the for all the good times and the struggles. That you are ready struggles. you toare and waitingThat for love findready you. and waiting for love to find you. Let the candles burn down. It’s Let candles burn down. It’s finethe at this point to step away fifrom ne at the this altar, point but to step away leave it from the altar, but leave it undisturbed. Eventually when undisturbed. Eventually when the candles have burned down, the candles have burned down, take the token away and either take token away or and either carrythe it as a charm string it carry it as a charm or string it to a necklace. Place the rose by to a necklace. the rosethe by your front stepPlace and sprinkle your front step and sprinkle the petals near your doorway. (If petals near your doorway. (If you’re in an apartment, or wish you’re in an apartment, or wish to be more subtle, keep the rose to be more keep the rose petals nearsubtle, a windowsill.) petals near a windowsill.)
Books continued from page 16
Brigid of Kildare
by Heather Terrell, 2010 ISBN: 0345505123 Since Saint Brigid’s Day or Imbolc is fast approaching, I thought I’d share this really fascinating book about Saint Brigid that I discovered without looking for it at the library! Really, there are three stories of three very diﬀerent people being told by Terrell in this one small book, yet all three stories are intertwined. Of course, Brigid’s story is the one that is most central and connects the others. Her story starts in her childhood and explores her introduction and connection to Christianity. It highlights her love of her people, her land, and the Christian faith. She becomes the bishop of Kildare and mixes the pagan ways of her people with the new Christian beliefs. The second story focuses on Decius, a scribe charged by the Roman Catholic Church with traveling to Kildare to spy and expose the hypocrisy Brigid is enacting with her congregation. He is won over by Brigid and eventually agrees to help her create an illuminated manuscript focused on the life of the Virgin Mary. The third interwoven story is set in modern times and shares Alex’s journey to appraise the illuminated manuscript discovered by the Sisters of Saint Brigid. I enjoyed this story because I knew so little about the history of Saint Brigid. I think Terrell makes the story interesting by creating bonds between the characters as well as asking tough questions about the role of women in Christianity, what is hypocrisy, and what is true faith. An enjoyable read for this time of year! ™• February 2011 • Volume II
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™• February 2011 • Volume II