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Letting The Darkness Show You The Light


It is a cold, dark day here in California’s Central Valley, fairly typical for December.  We’ve had a bit more rain than normal, so soon the yearly fog will drop down, blanketing the valley in endless murky gray. It is the kind of day when I want to do nothing more than grab my favorite afghan, curl up in my recliner with a cup of peppermint tea and binge watch Netflix.   However, the witch in me sees this as a time to embrace the darkness, immerse myself in it, feel it wrap around me like cozy sweater. As the winter winds and rains send me inside, the lure of the dark is overwhelming.  It is this season when I let the dark guide me, giving me the clues for what I need to know or do in the upcoming year.  It is the time when I let the darkness show me how to find the light. 

Our ancestors knew a thing or two about the darkness, of flowing with the seasons. Winters could be very harsh and cruel for them. Forced inside for days, even weeks, at a time they learned how to cope with this time of darkness and many would even spiritually thrive.  The dark was the time to tell our stories, to teach the children our traditions, a time to perfect skills such as weaving, knitting, and sewing.  While the wind blew and the snow fell, we rested, conserving our energies in order to conserve our resources. The dark was a time to petition and commune with the Gods, asking that the food last until planting time and that the fire never go out. Frigid temperatures, fear of starvation and waning light has a way of humbling even the haughtiest of souls.

While the majority of us never have the fear of freezing to death or running out of food, the dark of winter can still be a frightening time. The cold and early darkness brings us inside – not just into our homes, but into our psyche, our souls as well.  We may find ourselves gazing out the window at the rain or snow, contemplating life as it is, life as it was, or life as it should be. We search for warmth, not only of the hearth and easy chair, but the warmth of friends, family, our chosen deities, anything to dispel the darkness invading our lives. The dark draws us towards introspection, the examination of our lives, thought processes, our spirituality. It is now that all inner work – meditation, trance work, divination – calls to us, implores us, to go inside ourselves and listen.

Use this dark time of year to rest, rejuvenate, become. Follow the dark into the light by finding your authentic self again. Create and refine the you that you wish to be in the coming year.  Learn new skills and relearn old ways. Spend time speaking to your soul and even more time listening to it.  Give yourself breaks during the hectic days of the holidays for some “you” time.  Allow others to do for you instead of you always doing for others.  Shrink your circles, keep those you love close – you can expand again as the light expands. 

The dark is here for a reason, to allow you to slumber, to withdraw into rest as the earth also sleeps. Yet the dark also calls for action. Your shadows are no longer visible in the dark. Instead, they are the dark and as such demand that you acknowledge them, see them for what they are, learn from them, and then release them before the light again casts them onto the path before you. Deal with what you have ignored, pushed aside.  You have time during these long, quiet nights. Push aside the fear.  It has no place here.  This darkness is your companion, your partner, your friend.

As you journey through the dark toward the light, a lantern, a road map, can assist you in finding the right path in the waning light.  Illuminate your way by creating a list of the things you wish to accomplish during the year, use it to guide you towards those things that will let your mind, spirit and heart grow, blossom and thrive.  What do you want for yourself? Your family?  What will add to your happiness?  What would allow you to feel fulfilled, useful, creative?  What would make you glow with love, hope and joy? Place these points on your map and then plot a course to reach them.

As the light gains strength outside, so shall the light within wax and grow  stronger.  The dark, once embraced, becomes our ally, not our nemesis. Darkness becomes the fertile soil where we plant our dreams and ideas for the future, ready to let the light bring them into being.  The gloom and gray which chases us indoors gives us the same  opportunity it gave to our ancestors, the opportunity to share, to grow, to speak to our Gods, to be thankful for the life we have and to plan for the future.

It’s okay to plant ourselves on our couch and our comfy chairs and dream as the winter surrounds us.  Just remember to cultivate the seeds we’ve planted in the dark soils of the winter season, give them the energy and light of your attention. As you gaze into your hearth fires or watch as the candles flicker beside you, remember that it is only through the dark that the light shines the brightest.  Enter into the darkness and let it show you the promise it holds. Allow the darkness to show you the light, moving you forward on the journey that is you.

Blessed Be!

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Cinnamon Prosperity Ornament – A Triune Moon Magickal Moment


We can all do with a little extra time, money and sanity during the holidays.  While I may not be able to assist much with the time or sanity, I can offer you some help with the prosperity aspects.

I have crafted a simple, yet effective, charm/ornament to be hung on your tree to aid in garnering the prosperity you may be looking for. I have include instructions below.

The supplies needed are:

  • Two (2) Cinnamon sticks
  • Cloves
  • Green ribbon 
  • Silver or Invisible Thread
  • Gold Coins (you can find these at import or craft stores)
  • Hot glue gun
  • Needle
  • Scissors

Using the glue gun, glue two large cinnamon sticks together.  It works best if they are both the same size.

Once cooled, glue one end of the green ribbon to the end of the cinnamon stick.  Wind it around the stick as many times as you like.  With each wrap say, ” I invite prosperity into my life.” When you’ve wrapped it to the end of the stick, cut and glue.

I chose a metallic, shiny ribbon here, but feel free to use any type of green ribbon.

Thread the needle with the silver or invisible thread.  Run the thread through the hole in the coin leaving a tail. Run the thread through the hole again but this time create a loop to tie off the thread.

Run the needle through the first wrap of the ribbon then through the ribbon itself.  Pull up the thread, leaving the coin dangling – you can let it dangle as long as you would like. I kept it fairly short. Make a knot in at the end once you have the length you desire.  Cut the thread and move to the next wrap.

As you sew, visualize your home and wallet being filled with prosperity.  If you have something specific in mind – perhaps you need money to pay a bill – visualize the exact amount coming to you. Repeat this visualization with each coin.  You may also say what you want out loud as you visualize.

Once you’ve finished the coins, add some cloves under the ribbon wraps.  Cloves are another wonderful prosperity herb and they smell fabulous as well. You may also want to add some gemstone chips which correspond well for prosperity and money, such as jade or amethyst, or glue on other small decorations to the ornament.

Whole cloves placed under the ribbon wraps.

When you are done with your ornament, don’t forget to attach a hanger so you can place the ornament in your tree.  A simple loop of the ribbon hot glued to the back works quite well.  You may also use fishing line or invisible thread.

When the ornament is completed to your liking, hold it in your hands or place your hands over the ornament.  Picture the ornament bringing great prosperity to your home and loved ones.  See it filling with energy.  When you feel the ornament is filled and ready, hang it upon your tree.  If you don’t have a tree, don’t worry.  Hang it on your front door, in a window, above your mantel or over your altar.

May your holidays be filled with love, joy and prosperity. Merry Yule and a Blessed Solstice to you and yours.

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The Warp and Weft of Witchcraft


Inspiration for my blog posts often come from some of the most unusual sources.  Take this post for example.  I’d finished a crochet project and went to grab my loom to start on a table runner for my kitchen table.  As I prepared to place the warp on the loom, (I am a novice weaver having received my loom for Yule last year), I was trying to choose a sturdy warp thread for my project.  I’d used a thin yarn the time before and it kept moving and stretching causing my weaving to be weak and uneven.  As I readied the yarn I thought that in weaving, as in all manner of crafts, the warp, the foundation, needs to be strong so our creations can manifest the way we envision them.  If the warp is weak, no matter of how well we weave in our weft, our cloth may unravel in our hands.

Warp and weft for my new project,

It is the same in Witchcraft and all forms of magickal practice. If our foundations are weak, our magick will never manifest in the powerful ways it should.  The strong threads of practice and knowledge laid down before we spell cast will hold the weft of our herbs, stones, candles, all of our correspondences, in place, creating the firm yet pliable cloth of manifestation. But what does our magickal warp consist of?   

Our warp, our foundations, are those things that we were taught as budding magickal practitioners. With each coven, grove, and circle, these foundation will vary but without them, we cannot move forward along our chosen paths. Without first learning, practicing and becoming adept at these foundations our magick may work – for a time – but we will never move past the “keep the fingers crossed and hope it works” phase.  Below is a list of the “warp” that I share with my students. I believe that without these threads one cannot be expected to create a resilient, strong, beautifully magickal cloth – Witchcraft at its finest.

  • Meditation – As I’ve said many times before, without learning to clear one’s mind, to focus and be present in the moment, our magick will be just as unclear and unfocused. Creating a daily practice of meditation and communion with Spirit and other realms can only enhance our magick. Not only does it help us to focus our Will and our Word, it has mundane benefits as well.  Meditation aids in keeping our bodies and mind calm, relaxed, and healthy, making us better people and magickal practitioners.
  • Grounding and Centering – If we are unable to both ground ourselves in the Earth, in the Universe, before we begin our workings and then ground any excess energy afterwards, we can not only do harm to ourselves (magickal hangovers come to mind) we may also do harm to our spell casting and those caught in the crossfire when our ungrounded magick decides to manifest wonky – Yes, wonky is a very technical term. The same goes for Centering. If we do not center ourselves, that is get in touch with our core, our magick, then we have no starting point for manifestation, no point of origin from which to move forward.
  • Visualization – If you cannot see the warp threads as they move up and down with the heddle, you have know idea where to place the shuttle for the next pass of the weft.  In other words, without being able to visualize what we want our magick to do, where to send it and how we see it manifesting our magick will not weave into the creation we envision. Instead it will move into the Universe haphazardly, without direction. Learning to visualize properly and hold that picture in your mind for ever increasing lengths of time, is another sturdy warp thread in your cloth.
  • Energy Work – I cannot tell you how many time I’ve talked to people in working groups that have never had any training in energy work.  How can one expect to manifest magick without the foundation of good energy work?  If one does not know how to properly create, move, shape and then direct energy how can they be expected to confidently and consistently cast with the desired results?  Practice your energy work daily until it becomes as natural as breathing. The results will be a magickal thread that will bind and shape your spell’s fabric into whatever you can envision.
  • Ethics – Yes, this can be a controversial subject, but without our personal ethics how can we believe in what we are trying to create?  My ethics will never be the same as your ethics, but until we understand ourselves, understand what we feel is right or wrong, or somewhere in between, our workings will take on that ambivalence and become wishy-washy, uncertain of how it should express itself.  Its true in all aspects of our lives, we must believe in where we are coming from before we can go anywhere.  It’s like standing in the center of an amusement park, with rides all around you.  If you don’t know that you get motion sickness easily, then you may end up on a ride that makes you so ill that you are unable to ride on any others or even enjoy the rest of your day.  Ethics allow us to make the moves that are right and correct for us – not any one else – just us.

I feel that these five fundamental points are crucial for every magickal practitioner.  Yes, I do have several others that I share in my introductory classes, but without these five, magick has no where to start.  You may be an extremely powerful, natural-born witch, druid, wizard, but until you warp your loom of creation with strong threads, you may end up with a beautiful mess.  Take the time, the effort, to give yourself a rock solid foundation from which to begin your weaving and your magick will flow from your fingers, creating the world you desire.  

Blessed Be!

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Stirring in some Magick for the Holiday


Thanksgiving doesn’t seem like a very magickal holiday.  We shop, clean cook, bake, and get our homes ready for the onslaught of family and friends.  While we are pitching ourselves into the holiday frenzy, let’s not forget that we can always add a little magick to this day. 

Food and family are the cornerstone of this holiday.  What a perfect time for a little Kitchen Witchery. While we may celebrate this day of thanks in a traditional sense with turkey and all the trimmings (sans pilgrims and Indians in this house) or perhaps choose to experiment with our meals, we can stir in some magick while making those mashed potatoes.  Below are a few suggestions you may want to incorporate into your preparations:

  • Use blessed utensils for cooking. – These could be simple wooden spoons or spoons that have been carved or engraved with runes or sigils.  Each clockwise stir will add the energies you desire to your food.
  • Add some magickly imbued spices into your food – Mix in some rosemary into the mashed potatoes for protection.  The sage added into your stuffing will bring prosperity and long life. A pinch or two of thyme in the gravy adds love and a positive outlook on life.
  • Cleanse and consecrate your stove and oven before cooking or baking- Fill it with the energies of love, good health and joy.  Anything that is cooked on or in it will in turn be filled with the same energy.
  • Create a chant to sing while you stir – Write a chant for peace, love, prosperity or even familial harmony.  Repeat the chant with each clockwise stir of your dish.  If there is something you wish to dissipate or be rid of, such as family squabbling or Uncle Harry’s dirty jokes, sing your chant while mixing counter clockwise.
  • Add sigils or runes to the bottom of your serving dishes and plates -Find or create a sigil or rune for such ideals as harmony, prosperity, peace, joy, etc.  Draw these runes or sigils on the bottom of the plate or dish – either with permanent marker or, if you wish them to be invisible to your guests – with consecrated salt water.  As you draw envision the rune/sigil being filled with the energies you desire.
Spoons with wood burned runes.

Decorating can have a definite magickal vibe as well.  The traditional horn of plenty seen on many a Thanksgiving table can be filled with magickal symbols.  Apples for love and healing, oranges for joy and inspiration, pears for fertility, almonds for prosperity. the list is endless. Pick and choose what works best for you. 

Candles used as part of the table decorations can add another element of magickal energy to your celebration.  Empower the candles with the energies you wish by coating them with a corresponding oil or sprinkling herbs in the candle holder.  Holding your celebration in a place where it is inappropriate to have an open flame?  No problem.  You can do the same with the battery operated tealights or tapers.  Just be careful not to place any oil directly on the battery opening.

Feeling really creative and crafty?  Make a magickal holiday wreath for your front door.  Use items that reflect the energy you wish to greet, and share with, your guests.  Rosemary sprigs wound around wire and tied with fall colored ribbons invites love, peace and protection to your home and guests.  Add some acorns for prosperity, and some oak leaves for stability and you’ve created a wonderful addition to your home. Not very crafty?  No problem.  I found the simplest acorn wreath at a local store, just perfect for adding a bit of fall color as well as luck and abundance to my entrance.

Welcoming all with my acorn wreath.

If you are fortunate enough to have a fireplace, not only will a cozy fire add ambiance to your gathering, the hearth can add its own magick to the festivities.  Decorate the mantel with seasonal swags, candles and nick knacks.  Strew fragrant, magickal herbs around the hearth and directly into the fire.  Before the party goers arrive, write a petition for harmony, love and a peaceful gathering  on a piece of parchment and burn in the fireplace, adding your wishes to the energy of the home and into the Universe through smoke up the chimney. Turn an ordinary hearth broom into a “witchy” accessory by adding a few ribbons, sigils or messages in Theban script on the handle. Same with the fireplace tools, minus the ribbons which would go up in smoke the first time you tried to rearrange a log or two.

These are just a few of the many things you can do to make your holiday a witchy, magickal one. Take some time to think of other ways you can add a bit of yourself and your Craft to this holiday.  Remember that our Craft is as unique and individual as we are. Use that to create the atmosphere, the magick, you want to share with your family and friends. 

Once the turkey has been consumed, the last of the happy guests have gone, the left-overs placed in the fridge, and the mess cleared away, you can finally sit back and relax.  As you put your tired, but happy, feet up, think back on the feeling of the day and how the magick you’ve stirred into your holiday manifested.  Hold onto that magick, knowing that you’ve shared a bit of yourself with those you love, whether they were aware of it or not. May the love and abundance of this season bless you and yours always. 

Blessed Be!

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The Great Holiday Purge


The holidays are looming in front of us and if you are anything like me, I obsess about cleaning when I know that family and friends will be visiting.  It’s not to say that my house is a mess the rest of the year. On the contrary, it’s usually fairly neat and tidy.  I do have a tendency to drop things on the kitchen table and accumulate piles of paperwork I need to organize, but other than that, I can have people drop over unannounced and feel confident they won’t run screaming from my abode.  However, like most individuals, I seem to accumulate way too much stuff. It’s hiding in closets, drawers, cupboards, in the basement and even in my studio/office/witchy cottage. Now, with the threat of hosting my first Thanksgiving in years, I’m spurred into action. The Great Holiday Purge has begun.

If you’ve ever attempted to rid yourself of year’s of accumulated stuff, you understand how difficult it may be.  First, there is convincing yourself that a purge is actually needed.  My internal conversation goes something like this:

“It’s not that bad. I think I can shove one more thing into this closet and still be able to get into it.”   Then there is the, “I know I can close this drawer. Wait. Nope, not happening. Too much stuff.”  Then there is my all-time favorite “If I push really hard I can put XYZ into this cupboard.” – then try to open it later to have half of the contents fall out. Finally, it’s “Hmm, maybe I really do need to get rid of some stuff.”

Success, phase one is complete.  I’ve actually convinced myself that I need to start the purge. Now the second phase, a phase fraught with pitfalls, self-coercion, frustration, lots of swearing and sometimes a few tears.  It is the “choosing what goes” phase. Trust me, this is the most critical and most difficult phase to complete.

My personal strategy for phase two is to pick one area, say the bedroom closet, and pull everything out of it.  I mean everything. Clothes, shoes, bins, whatever is currently in the closet, take it out.  When done there should be nothing but bare closet (or organizer if you are fortunate enough to have one).  Then one by one, pick up each item. Really look at it.  Do you still love it?  Have you used it in the past year?  Does it fit? Is it torn, broken, 20 years out of style? Does it make you happy? As you go through this process create three piles,  one to keep, one for items to throw out (for broken or beyond repair items), and one for donations to a local charity.  Once you’ve got everything sorted, go through your “keep” pile again, but even more critically.  Really look at each and every item.  After looking at it again do you still want it?  Do you truly need it?  Don’t hesitate, follow your gut and then choose wisely.

Last, but most important, when you’ve completed your piles, get rid of them.  Throw it out!  Place your items to donate into a bag and place them in your car – and try to get to the donation center before the holidays are over. Move all your “keep” items neatly back into the assigned closet, drawer or cupboard, after said closet has been vacuumed, dusted or wiped clean of any dirt or debris.

Go to the next closet (or drawer or cupboard) and repeat. Now. Just do it.  Don’t forget to include a magickal purge as well. Get into your coven room, shed, sacred space or altar box and clean! Are there old, half melted candles that need to be disposed of?  Do you really need 12 jars of full moon water?  Is your broom loosing its bristles and falling apart? Do your herbs still smell like an herb or have they lost their scent and need to be replaced? Is that altar cloth looking a little ragged or torn?  Use the same three phases of purging and set your magickal house to rights as well.

Yes, the entire process is time-consuming and frustrating, probably why most of us avoid it like the plague.  It’s also not much fun, unless you are channeling Sheldon Cooper from Big Bang Theory, in which case you more than likely wouldn’t have this issue to begin with.  Fun or not, once you have gone through and purged your little heart out you will be amazed at how great it makes you feel. Personally, I feel freer, my home feels lighter and less crowded and the energy of my space seems to lift and be revived.  I may have wailed and moaned, procrastinated and avoided, but once completed, I have a new sense of pride in my home and myself.

Now, when the relatives descend en masse and your friends drop by to share some holiday cheer. you won’t have to close the bedroom doors and lock the medicine cabinet.  The Great Holiday Purge will have been a success and now your home will be filled with love, instead of junk. Your family will only see the warmth and joy you have to share and you can relax and enjoy this wonderful time of year.

Blessed Be!






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New Year, New Witch


Blessed Samhain and a Happy Halloween to all. I’ve been looking forward to this day all year!  It is a time steeped in lore, traditions, mystery and fun. It’s the one day of the year I can run amuck, dressed in my witchy finery and no one bats an eye. Then, when the last of the candy and goodies have been given out and the last little goblin is home in bed, the ritual area is set, the fire is lit and the serious work of Samhain begins.

In many traditions Samhain is thought of as the Witches’ New Year and it is has always been so in my household.  While much of the focus of this season is on the thinning veil and working with our ancestors – a  worthy focus and one I share – I have another ritual I perform every Samhain, one I wish to share with you here.

On the calendar New Year, January 1st, it is a tradition here in the States to make resolutions and goals for the coming year.  We decide what changes we wish to make in our lives, write them down, tell our friends and then find ways to accomplish them. Goals such as “I will lose 20 pounds this year.” or ” I resolve to drink less and exercise more” are often made in haste or even during a frenetic celebration (I’ve heard more than one resolution being made after several glasses of champagne). These goals and resolutions don’t seem to last very long, some are even forgotten after the first week.

While I can be heard making these types of resolutions during the calendar new year, on Samhain, I perform a ritual where I make firm, binding resolutions and goals, all pertaining to where I wish to take my Craft in the upcoming year. These goals can be as simple such as increasing my meditation time, to the complicated – learning the Kabbalah or a new divination technique. No matter what the goal may be, it is something that I feel, at that time, is something I desire to make, create or nurture for the year.

Unlike the haphazard way I seem to make my calendar new year goals, my resolutions and goals made at Samhain are done during ritual, in sacred space.  Here, where the Gods observe and listen, they take on an importance, a spiritual commitment, that the other resolutions do not.  Those things I write down and then recite to the Universe, become a pledge to Goddess and the Universe to do my utmost to make these goals a reality.  Once ritual is complete I place those goals on the wall above my altar where they are a daily reminder of the vows I have given to myself and the Gods.

Each day of the year I do one thing to help myself achieve those goals.  If it is a new technique I wish to learn I order books, research, find an instructor and get as much information as I can about it.  I then study, absorb and practice, practice, practice.  If the goal is more ephemeral, such as planning a single ritual or creating a sacred object, I set short-term goals to accomplish it along with a time-line for completion. 

Yes, I sometimes falter, misstep, or fail altogether.  Life can get in the way, and the Goddess often decides that what is in my best interest isn’t always what I think I need to do.  But I try, each and every day, to achieve those goals, to heed the resolutions that I have made.  Is it easy? No, but having been initiated during Samhain, in ritual, they seem somehow more obtainable. It’s as if you have your ancestors, the Universe, the Gods, beside you, encouraging you, urging you on. You can’t help but be successful with that kind of cheering section. Just remember to stay focused, put forth the effort and enjoy the journey.

At year-end, the day before Samhain, I take those goals off the wall and review them.  Did I accomplish everything?  If not, do I know why?  Are some of these goals still in progress? What do I need to accomplish this year? I then sit, write down a first draft of my new goals and resolutions. I then meditate, read them again, polish it up and commit to a final list.  This I take with me to ritual the next day. The circle is complete and I am ready for the upcoming new year.

I encourage you this Samhain to start your own tradition of the Witches’ New Year Resolutions.  Create or re-create the witch, the magickal practitioner, that you’ve always wanted to become. Let your heart take you places you’ve never been and allow the Universe, the ancestors, and the Gods show you what you are capable of. Remember, new year, new witch.  Make this the best year, the best you, ever.

Blessed Be!



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Baby Steps Towards Walking Your Talk


In the last year or so I have had many conversations with folks, in and out of the magickal community, about being authentic and “walking your talk.” These conversations begin because of an individual who has been identified as doing neither. These rather heated discussions seem to have become increasingly more frequent. I have to wonder why that is. Is it because there are so many more new people in the magickal community without proper guidance? Maybe the people in the community doing the complaining are too picky on the definitions, don’t understand what it actually means or are just dang catty. Perhaps it’s a bit of  each. I do feel that all of the individuals, on both sides of the conversations, are forgetting to lead by example, perhaps not on purpose, but it’s happening nonetheless. For all our sakes, I think it’s time we take a serious look at “walking your talk.”

A fairly loose definition of “walk your talk” would be making your personal, every day actions match your chosen spiritual, religious or community path.   As an example, let’s look at “Mary”.  She is a newbie witch, been practicing for a year or so on a Wiccan path.  She is quick to quote the Wiccan Rede and three-fold law, but is the first to whip out the cauldron and mix up a nasty batch of “stab them in the back” potion.  She is saying one thing and doing the exact opposite.  She’s just spouting pretty rhetoric, wearing the trappings, and not at all “walking her talk”.

Then we have “Steve”.  He has been a practicing witch for approximately the same amount of time.  He belongs to a very earth-conscious circle, a group that has deep conservationist and community service beliefs.  He works full-time but manages to spend at least one weekend a month helping to clean up parks and a nearby riverfront or volunteers at his local homeless shelter.  He recycles, eats vegan, lives simply in a tiny house and rides his bike everywhere.  His walk mirrors his talk.

While these two examples are clearly extremes at the opposite ends of the spectrum, in reality most of us are floundering somewhere in the middle.  Is that a bad thing?  No, not inherently.  But it’s a slippery slope. If we are going to portray ourselves in a certain light, we need to be damned sure that we are striving to stay in the glow of authenticity  and not allow ourselves to fall into the shadows of false behavior and fakery.  How do we do this?  What can we do to live a life steeped in truth, reflecting out to all an example of walking our talk? Baby steps my friends, we take baby steps.

Sit down and take a hard look at your path, your beliefs.  Make a list if you find it helpful  of those things that are important to your path, (I am a Virgo so lists are my life). Does your path require daily meditation, prayer or reflection?  Does your circle or coven encourage offerings to your chosen deity(ies) or an altar to your ancestors?  How about service to the community, monthly fasting, or vision quests?  Are you doing that?  If not, today is the day to start. Pick one thing, just one thing that defines you and your path and do it. Now.  Then keep doing it everyday until it is an integrated part of your daily life, your being.  Then pick another and add that in. Now you are moving forward, walking your talk and leading by example. You’ll find it easier than you imagined. Really. Trust me.

Walking your talk does not mean you are perfect.  It means you are genuinely trying to live your life in alignment with the path you have chosen for yourself.  While others may not agree with your path, they will not be able to find fault with how you are walking it. It may start with baby steps, tentative and unsure, but as the baby grows, its steps become steadier, stronger.  So will your conviction to your path when you allow yourself to walk your talk, living as authentically as you can.  Go ahead. Take that first baby step.  Then the next, and the next..

Blessed Be.




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Lessons From Ganesha


When packing up my desk on my last day before retirement, I scooped up a small statue of Ganesha. He had been placed there many years before, in such a way that he was continually in my line of sight.  I’ve always felt drawn to Ganesha, although I wasn’t sure why.  Maybe it was the elephant head, the cute rat at his feet or that he always looked so happy.  I knew a bit about his attributes so when I felt like obstacles were constantly being thrown in my path, professionally and personally, turning to Ganesha for some much needed help just felt right.

If you are not familiar with Ganesha, he is the Hindu God of success, wealth, the remover of obstacles, and on the flip side, can place obstacles in your path should you become vain and overly ambitious.  He is called upon when beginning any new venture, such as a new project or business.  Unbeknownst to me before I began writing this blog,  he is also seen as the patron of authors.  How cool is that?

Ganesha sat there on my desk, day after day, looking out over the chaos that was my work life.  I would silently talk to him, asking that he move the obstacles in my path so I could move ahead, get out of my current job, become the writer and witch I needed to be.  He would sit there, smiling, his eyes seeming to sparkle, but he never answered.  Or so I thought.

One particularly bad day I excused myself and went into the restroom.  Seeing that no one else was there, I entered a stall and promptly began to cry.  Not just a little, but big gut wrenching sobs. Ganesha, I thought, why did I feel blocked at every turn?  Why did I feel so bad, so stressed, so done? I wanted, no needed, to be out of that place but I kept hitting a proverbial brick wall.  Suddenly a picture of a caricature me flashed before my inner eye.  In the vision I stood, trowel and mortar board in hand, in front of a tall red brick wall. Slowly my cartoon self looked up just as the bricks began to break free from the highest point of the wall.  They fell, cartoon style, on my head as a dialog balloon popped up, filled with $%&* (cartoon cursing). My tears dried up and I began to laugh.  Loudly, nearly hysterically.

Drying my eyes and composing myself, I exited the stall, realizing that I’d just received a rather poignant, if not comical, message.  The world wasn’t giving me obstacles, I was building them myself.  Wow, talk about an “AHA” moment. I’d been looking at the big picture all wrong.  The obstacles weren’t something that the Universe had placed in front of me, they were of my own making.  I sent up a silent “thank you” to Ganesha and went back in to work.

Sitting down at my desk and smiling at the happy statue once again in front of me, I jotted down what had just happened. I did my best to identify those obstacles I’d built and then some ideas on how I would go about demolishing my obstacles.  Needless to say the list was quite lengthy.  Once finished, I felt an incredible weight lift off of my shoulders. I had a list and a plan. As any Virgo knows, those two things are what get us off our butts and moving forward. Every. Single. Day.

That evening, list and plan in hand, I began taking that edifice down brick by brick.  It took several weeks, a lot of research, number crunching and soul-searching, but cracks began to appear in the wall. When all was prepared I sat down for a long talk with the husband, four different spreadsheets in hand, each with a different scenario and budget carefully planned out.  I was going to retire – not quit – my current job, and write and teach full time. He looked them over, picked one, and my wall tumbled down.

Since I have retired Ganesha has received an honored place on my bedroom altar, the altar I look to every morning.  He reminds me to be careful of what I am building in my life.  Do my plans keep me happy, my options open and energy flowing? Or have I become the architect of a new wall, constructing another obstacle to once again trap myself in a situation or place I could have easily moved around? I am hoping I have learned my lesson and retired my trowel and mortar for good. If not, I know Ganesha is there, ready to teach me another lesson in obstacle demolition.

Blessed Be!











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Resting Witch Face


Meditation.  You’d have to be living in a bubble somewhere not to have heard about the importance of meditation for your physical and mental well-being.  Seriously, you can’t swing a dead rutabaga without bashing into a book on meditation, seeing a YouTube how-to video or a hearing about it on your favorite talk show or radio program. Meditation this and meditation that.  So, why the constant media bombardment and why am I writing about it here? Because all of this hoopla is correct. Meditation is vastly important. Not only for your physical and mental health but for your magickal health as well.

Cultivating a meditation practice affects your magick in several ways. First, and foremost, it makes a healthier and happier witch.  Meditation relaxes you, allows the cares and worries of the day to be carried away on your focused breath.  Relaxation fights dis-ease, aids in the fight against depression and anxiety and brings you mental clarity.  Mental clarity is essential in defining your Will, that which allows you to manifest the changes you wish to make in your world.

Secondly, it teaches focus and discipline, two vitally important skills to have as a magickal practitioner.  Without proper focus your spells and workings can fall flat, lacking the steady influx of energy vital to take them to manifestation. A good meditation practice teaches you to quiet your mind and to focus singularly for long stretches at a time, a requirement for adept spell work.

By disciplining yourself to maintain a meditation practice you will find that the discipline you need to move forward in your Craft becomes more effortless.  If you’ve already been maintaining a sitting practice of twenty minutes a day , adding 15 minutes or more of magickal activity – a must in my book for flexing your magickal muscles –  seems like child’s play.  Your newfound discipline can even be the catalyst you need to get off your now healthier butt and play in the moonlight more.

Last, but not lacking in importance, meditation allows a deeper connection with all that is, the Universe, your deities, your spirit guides, all of it. Quieting your mind gives those that wish to impart their wisdom, give you much needed answers, or just chat, a chance to get through. Meditation clears your mind of extraneous thoughts and quiets both your conscious and subconscious mind. This quiet cultivates the proper reception in our minds for communicating with those on much higher frequencies as well as allowing us to feel the more subtle astral vibrations associated with those on a different plane. Meditation opens us, clears us of ego, then offers up our quieted minds to bring us closer to our Gods, aid us in finding out more about ourselves spiritually and magically, and connects us with the vastness of the Universe. When we are connected, all things are possible. Imagine what that can do for your magick!

The next time the “M” word comes up and the verbal debate on just what it is and how to do it ensues, just smile and nod.  You now know how wonderful meditation is and the many benefits it can offer you.  So what are you waiting for? Take a seat, put on your resting witch face, and prove to yourself and the masses that meditation can make you the person, the magickal practitioner, the witch, you always knew you could be.

Namaste and Blessed Be!



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A Bad Case of the “Have Tos”


Once again I find myself driving home from work with a zillion thoughts zinging around in my head.  As I drive I’m mentally preparing a list of the things I have to do that evening, that week, that month.  There are the usual mundane things I have to do – laundry, housework, meal planning, yard work.  If that wasn’t enough to do, there are items that I have to do concerning my spiritual practice.  I have to get ready for Full Moon.  I have to write ritual for Hekate’s Feast. I have to work on my page and my blog. I have to, I have to, I have to.  Wait!  Oh no! I’ve caught a bad case of the “Have Tos”.

The “Have To’s” is an insidious little virus, infecting us all from the moment we are born until the day we move on.  We can’t seem to get away from them, all those pesky things we think we “have to” do. They hound us, wake us from our slumber, give us anxiety when we can’t get them all done. But do we really “have to”? Think about it?  Who is demanding that we “have to” do anything? What do we truly “have to” do?

Okay, I am not advocating that you stop doing everything.  Yes, there are those things we should do in order to take care of our well-being and the well-being of those we have chosen to place in our charge.  We must eat, drink, breathe, love, work in some fashion to feed ourselves and provide ourselves and our charges with shelter, and, eventually, die. That’s it. Really. Everything else we do is a choice.

Yes, a choice. The way you eat, drink, keep fit physically (or don’t), your spirituality, are all choices.  How, who and when we love are all choices.  Where and how we live are all choices. Even how we die can be a choice, though it is an inevitability.   When we understand that these things are choices we begin the eradication of the dreaded “Have Tos”

“But I have obligations,” you say.  “What about those?”  Just think on it for a moment.  What are obligations?  They are those tasks that society, family, or ourselves have placed upon us to perform.  But you as an individual have a choice as to whether or not you wish to accept that task.  You can choose to go your own way, behave how you wish, society be damned.  Or you can conform to keep the peace, the status quo.  That’s okay. It is your choice, either way. Truly, it is.

The infection of the “Have Tos” is not just contained to our physical life, but infiltrates into our spiritual and Witchcraft practices.  Please, leave the “Have To’s” outside our circles, covens, and groves because once they get in, they are a bitch to cure. Those “Have Tos” fog our senses and cause us to forget why so many of us chose our paths to begin with. Catch that?  Chose our paths. We shouldn’t “have to” honor the Sabbats or follow the moon cycles. We should want to.  We don’t “have to” meditate, commune with nature or honor our Gods. We choose to, desire to, are happy to.  As Witches, Wizards, Druids, or Pagans we have the power to choose how we practice, when we practice and why we practice.  It really is that simple.

The “Have Tos” is a horrible infection but it can be cured with time. To do so we must desire to unlearn years of programming and prescribe ourselves a big dose of Free Will. You remember that? The Gods gave it to us for one reason, that we may choose our own destiny. Yes, the cure can be painful. Sometimes the choices we make may hurt ourselves or others and could be downright dangerous or horribly wrong. But we learn and grow from our mistakes, healing ourselves with each freely made choice.

Curing ourselves of the “Have Tos” does not mean we will never do things we don’t truly want to do. It just frees us to choose the how’s and why’s we are doing them.  Society will not crumble because we choose not to mow the lawn today, leave a job you hate, don’t go to that family function for someone you detest, or run yourself ragged with your perpetual list of “have tos.”.  Once we are cured, freed of the “Have Tos” we become happier, more relaxed and, ultimately, more productive members of this society and the world.  So what are you waiting for? Take the cure.