Daily Stuff 7-30-12

Update 3pm – It’s been a fairly quite day, so far. Tempus had to get moving as soon as we got open, so the car’s not here. I’ve been working on herbs, candles and website updates, not in that order….

Update 12:30pm -Oh, my! It’s so pretty outside! There’s a cool breeze. It’s 65F. The sky is a lovely soft blue with white “poofies” and some that are pink or slightly grey, but not threatening, at all. I’m hard at work on website updates; music pages first and then books. BTW, I know that it’s easier to buy from Amazon, but if you look at our products, you might find some deals, and we do ship.

…and had to add the pic of a sweet pea growing in the planter out front….

Hi, folks!

Last night was the first night that I realized that the shortening of the days is speeding up. Today is 2 m 18s shorter than yesterday and that rate will keep speeding up until Mabon. You can see the longer shadows in the late afternoon and the shop doesn’t get the full early evening sunset…or rather 1/2 doesn’t. Around Litha *none* did because the sun would set behind the pharmacy, but now it’s farther back to the south, so 1/2 of the shop is in shadow and it happens suddenly enough to startle.

It’s overcast and supposed to be mostly cloudy. Pretty much the same forecast, same conditions.

A crow was sitting on the tray where Tempus put out some stale bread. He looked around, grabbed a big chunk and made his getaway. Here’s comes another. Hunh… he looked over the offerings and flew off.

Yesterday was long and very crowded at the shop! We had 17 youngsters there for class. We started the day with a discussion of shamanism, totems and dreams, then Brea did her class, then we had a long break while Brea and I both did counseling.

Willow showed up and took several of the young folks with her to do some rescue of some native species from invasive plants while the rest of us did a candle-making class. We used the new soy wax that I got as a prize from a give-away that Brambleberry Soap Co. was doing. That made one candle and part of a second that will have to wait for more soy wax. We then waited and waited and waited for the paraffin wax to get melted and finally made 4 more candles and a set of votives.

After that I took a few minutes to work on inventory stuff. I’m doing the “unders” from the herbs. At one point I looked around because the shop had gotten so quiet. Several of the youngsters were chatting quietly and looking at books in the classroom, but out front there were an 1/2 dozen glued to computers….and totally quiet… <grin>

Diana and Rick brought the freezer and some of the students helped them horse it into the back of the shop. That’s going to be for the frozen stuff that they bring back from the Valley.

We didn’t have a lot of customers in. There usually aren’t a whole lot on Sunday. When it’s cloudy folks head out earlier in the day too, instead of hanging around and shopping and playing on the beach, which sometimes brings them in, but very late.

When Tempus got back he took two loads back to Job Corps and then got the freezer plugged in and started. We finished a few more chores and then came home.

It was still partly cloudy and the moon kept ducking in and out of the still-very-blue sky. It wasn’t for another hour that I saw pink in the clouds to the east and now it’s nearly dark.

While Tempus was cleaning up in the kitchen and getting the dishes from the day sorted out I got a set of ravioli boiled and made a sauce of cheddar cheese soup, onions and black olives. It was pretty tasty.

Today is back-to-work on inventory and website updates. A few necklaces have happened over the weekend (clasps and mending). I’ve actually started to get the supplies cleared and some room to work again. I know there are more things than that to get done. Why can’t I think of what they are? Oh! The other thing is going to be getting OCPPG info together.

There’s another crow out there. He keeps hopping from foot to foot and looking around as though he’s worried about something. …and he snatched a chunk and took off. Why are the crows acting like the “criminal element” this morning?

…Tempus is putting out the remnants of the stew from yesterday. I wonder what that will bring?

…It brought another crow who picked through, getting meat scraps and scattered the pile, then flew off with his beak full.

The shop opens at 10am. Summer hours, 10am-7pm, Wednesday through Monday. If we’re supposed to be closed, but it looks like we’re there, try the door. If it’s open, the shop’s open!

Love & Light,
Anja

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Today’s Astro & Calendar
The Moon is Waxing Gibbous. Waxing Moon Magick – The waxing moon is  for constructive magick, such as love, wealth, success, courage, friendship, luck or healthy, protection, divination. Any working that needs extra power, such as help finding a new job or healings for serious conditions, can be done now. Also, love, knowledge, legal undertakings, money and dreams. Waxing Gibbous Moon – From seven to fourteen days after the new moon. For spells that need concentrated work over a ¼ moon cycle this is the best time for constructive workings. Aim to do the last working on the day of the Full moon, before the turn.  Phase ends on Tuesday at 8:27am.

The waxing gibbous Moon this evening hangs over the handle of the Sagittarius Teapot. Mercury is out of sight in conjunction with the Sun. Bright Jupiter and brighter Venus are pulling away from each other in the eastern sky at dawn.

Celtic Tree Month of TinneHolly  Jul 8Aug 4
CollHazel  Aug 5Sep 1
Goddess Month of Kerea runs from 7/11 – 8/8
Runic half-month of Thorn, 7/29-8/12 – Northern Tradition honors the god known to the Anglo-Saxons as Thunor and to the Norse as Thor (right). The time of Thorn is one of ascendant powers and orderliness. This day also honors the sainted Norwegian king, Olaf, slain around Lammas Day. Its traditional calendar symbol is an axe.

Sun in Leo
Moon enters Capricorn at 12:29am
Pallas Retrograde at 3:30pm
Mercury, Uranus, Chiron, Neptune, Pluto Retrograde
Color: Silver

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©2012 M. Bartlett, Some parts separately copyright

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Tinne  Holly  Jul 8Aug 4 – Tinne  – (CHIN-yuh), holly – The holly (Ilex aquifolium L.) is a shrub growing to 10 m (35 feet) in open woodlands and along clearings in forests. Hollies are evergreen, and stand out in winter among the bare branches of the deciduous forest trees that surround them. Hollies form red berries before Samhain which last until the birds finish eating them, often after Imbolc. The typical “holly leaf” is found on smaller plants, but toward the tops of taller plants the leaves have fewer spiny teeth. Hollies are members of the Holly family (Aquifoliaceae). The common holly is often cultivated in North America, as are hybrids between it and Asiatic holly species.

Graves (1966) and others are of the opinion that the original tinne was not the holly, but rather the holm oak, or holly oak (Quercus ilex L.). This is an evergreen oak of southern Europe that grows as a shrub, or as a tree to 25 m (80 feet). Like the holly, the holm oak has spiny-edged leaves on young growth. It does not have red berries, but it does have red leaf “galls” caused by the kermes scale insect; these are the source of natural scarlet dye. Holm oaks are occasionally cultivated in North America.

Tinne – Holly Ogam letter correspondences
Month: June
Color: Dark Grey
Class: Peasant
Letter: T
Meaning: Energy and guidance for problems to come
to study this month – Ioho – Yew Ogam letter correspondences
Month: None
Color: Dark Green
Class: Chieftain
Letter: I, J, Y
Meaning: Complete change in life-direction or attitude.

from Wikimedia commons

Coll  Hazel  Aug 5Sep 1 – Coll – (CULL), hazel – The hazel (Corylus avellana L) is the source of hazelnuts. It forms a shrub up to 6 m (20 feet) tall, inhabiting open woodlands and scrubs, hedgerows, and the edges of forests. The filbert nut in North American groceries is Corylus maxima, a related species. The European hazelnut is cultivated in North America, primarily as an ornamental. Hazelnuts are in the Birch family (Betulaceae).

Coll – Hazel Ogam letter correspondences
Month: July
Color: Brown
Class: Chieftain
Letter: C, K
Meaning: Creative energies for work or projects.

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Tides for Alsea Bay
~Day          High      Tide    Height    Sunrise     Moon  Time      % Moon
~                /Low      Time       Feet    Sunset                                 Visible
~M   30      Low    5:09 AM    -1.1   6:02 AM    Set   3:21 AM      86
~       30     High  11:42 AM      5.9   8:43 PM    Rise  6:51 PM
~       30      Low    4:54 PM      2.5
~       30     High  10:52 PM      8.3

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Affirmation/Thought for the Day – Take the time to notice the little things.

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Journal Prompt – What is? – What is a scary dream that you remember from your past?

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Quotes
~   For it isn’t enough to talk about peace. One must believe in it. And it isn’t enough to believe in it. One must work at it. – Eleanor Roosevelt (1884-1962) US first lady
~   Get over the idea that only children should spend their time in study.  Be a student so long as you still have something to learn, and this will mean all your life. – Henry Doherty (1870 – 1939)
~   He didn’t come out of my belly, but my God, I’ve made his bones, because I’ve attended to every meal, and how he sleeps, and the fact that he swims like a fish because I took him to the    ocean. I’m so proud of all those things. But he is my biggest pride. – John Lennon (1940-1980) English singer, songwriter
~   I frequently tramped eight or ten miles through the deepest snow to keep an appointment with a beech-tree, or a yellow birch, or an old acquaintance among the pines. – Henry David Thoreau

Cupbearer, pour the wine! Let it flow and keep flowing!
I am sick of swinging between hope and fear.
Shatter thought, I want nothing to do with it!
Tear from my heart all unstable imaginings!
Hack from their chains the shameless joys of passion!
Dance into our assembly, Beloved, unveil Your Face
Scatter graces with each swirl of Your robe of Flame.
Look at these madmen dancing out of themselves for You:
See how they’ve stripped themselves of the rages of time! – Jalal-ud-Din Rumi (Translated by Andrew Harvey from A Year of Rumi)

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Magick

Pip Wilson’s Almanac on Lammas, Part 1http://www.wilsonsalmanac.com/lammas.html

Our road starts where they say all roads end: Rome.

The Roman Catholic church claimed to have in its possession one of the chains with which the Apostle Peter was bound, and from which the angel delivered him. The empress Eudocia brought the two chains in 439 from Jerusalem, sending one to Constantinople and the other to Rome. Over many years, the popes sent miracle-performing filings of it to devout princes. August 1 is known as the Feast Day of the Chains of St Peter – in Latin, Peter ad Vincula.

The month of August was the first in the Egyptian calendar, and called Gule, which when Latinized makes Gula, which in Latin signifies throat. Seeing the word at the head of the month’s calendar, the Roman Catholic Church made the day a feast to the Christian daughter of the Roman tribune Quirinus, who was cured of a throat disease by kissing the chain of Peter on the day of its festival. “Forcing the Gule of the Egyptians into the throat of the tribune’s daughter, they instituted a festival to Gule upon the festival-day of St Peter ad Vincula.”  (Every-day Book, William Hone 1878)

We are also celebrating Lammas, or Lughnasadh; however, the modern date for Lughnasadh, as for the other great Celtic festivals, Imbolc, Beltane and Samhain, is only an approximation made necessary by a solar calendar. In Ireland, the festival began in mid-July, and lasted till mid-August, but its main focus was August 1. In the Asatru tradition, that day is sacred to the Norse deities Odin and Frigg; celebrants used to ascend the spiral path of the Lammas hill, on way to Lammas festivities.

What is it?
In the Northern Hemisphere, halfway between the Summer Solstice and the Autumn Equinox, comes the ancient Celtic pagan festival of Lughnasadh, also called Lughnasa (or the modern Irish spelling, Lúnasa) and Lammas, one of the eight Sabbats – one of the High Holidays, or four Greater Sabbats – of the Celtic Wheel of the Year. (This is the least known of the four seasonal cross-quarter days. Certainly, Samhain (Halloween) and Beltane (May Day) get more press in our age.) In the Southern Hemisphere, some neo-pagans call this time Imbolc, after the station of the year directly opposite Lammas on the Wheel.

Lammas comes from Old English hlaf maesse, meaning ‘loaf mass’, the Christian holy repast at which bread baked from the first wheat of the season was blessed. Many cultures have the ceremony of the first of the harvest being sacrificially given to the gods, or god; the ancient Hebrews offered their ‘first fruits’ to Jehovah, just as the Bemanti clan of Swaziland offer theirs to their king during December’s full moon, in the Ncwala ceremony. When Christianity came to the Celtic lands, most ancient festivals such as Lughnasadh were imbued by the Church with Christian symbolism, so loaves of bread were baked from the first of the harvested grain and consecrated on the church altar on the first Sunday of August, a tradition still enacted in many churches.

Some have claimed that the word is from Lamb-Mass, “because on that day the tenants who held lands under the cathedral church in York, which is dedicated to St Peter ad Vincula, were bound by their tenure to bring a live lamb into the church at high mass; others derive it from a supposed offering or tything of lambs at this time” (Hone 1878).

The similarity of the pre-Christian name Lughnasadh to the Christian name Lammas might be more than coincidental, but it is a contended matter. The etymology might go something like this: the Celtic word nasadh meant ‘commemoration’, or ‘to give in marriage’; the Anglo-Saxons called this festival Lughmass; because it took place between the hay harvest and the corn harvest, the name was later confused with hlaf maesse; hence ‘Lammas’. We might, however, as easily assume that ‘Lughnasadh’ means the ‘Marriage of Lugh, as ‘Lugh’s Mass’, a rather common interpretation.

Lugh, Celtic sun god
The god associated with the season is a Celtic sun god, Lugh, whose name is related to the Latin lux, or, ‘light’, and means ‘the shining one’.

He was handsome, perpetually youthful, and full of vivacity and energy. Poet and author Robert Graves proposed that his name came from the Latin lucus (‘grove’), and even perhaps lu, Sumerian for son. Lugh was a deity cognate to Hercules or Dionysus, the Romans’ version of the Greek god Apollo. Another name for him was ‘Lugh the Long Handed’. In Wales, he was called Lleu, or Lleu Llaw Gyffes, meaning ‘Lion with the Steady Hand’. Lleu means lion, related to the Latin leo. (Note that the Zodiacal sign of Leo is now in the sun.)

Although we are uncertain whether the Gauls’ name of this Celtic deity was Romanised to Lugus/Lugos, (whom they identified with the god Mercury), or vice versa, we do know that the impact of both the name and the deity were widespread. Lyons in France, for example, was originally called Lugudunum, or the Fort of Lugus, and a festival formerly held there on August 1 was later renamed after Caesar Augustus who had assumed major deity authority. The European towns of Laon, Leyden and Carlisle (originally Caer Lugubalion) also were all named after Lugh, and the modern name Hugh also derives from the deity.

Let the games begin!
Several important and hugely attended assemblies, all involving Olympics-like games, took place during Lughnasadh in Ireland, and there is growing evidence of such games throughout Europe, because Celtic culture took root from Ireland to as far as Galatia, the Middle Eastern town mentioned in the Bible (Paul’s Epistle to the Galatians – the word is etymologically related to ‘Celtia’).

Lammas and athletic contests go hand in hand. Ranggeln, an ancient style of wrestling from which the terms ‘wrangle’ and thus ‘Wrangler jeans’ derive, is still practised in Austria. The St Jacob’s Day (July 29) Ranggeln festival at the summit of Mt Hundstein harks back to pre-Christian Celtic Lughnasadh festivities.

The Oenach Tailten was the assembly of Tailte, held at Talten or Teltown, a mountain in Meath, for the fifteen days on either side of August 1. Fostering was a Celtic practice that survived into early 18th century Scotland, and the goddess Tailte (Tailtiu), for whom the Oenach Tailten were held and the games played, was Lugh’s foster-mother, a female chieftain of the Fir-Bolg. After she and her people were vanquished by the Tuatha De Dannan, she was ordered by them to clear a large forest for the purpose of planting a field of grain, and Tailte died of exhaustion in the attempt.  The legend tells us that she was buried beneath a large mound named for her, at the place where the first feast of Lughnasadh was held in Ireland, the hill of Tailte. Lugh’s birth mother was Ethnea Ní Bhaloir. Lughnasadh also commemorated Lugh’s two wives, Nas and Bui, so a strong feminine aspect can be seen in Lughnasadh, as well as its primary masculine theme of the solar deity.

Fun, fun, fun, including divorce
When ancient Celts went to a Lughnasadh celebration, they could expect to find many features of a modern fair or market day, not just sports and sacrality. Crafts (probably including ‘corn dollies’, which are still a Lammas tradition), preserves, all kinds of foods and local produce would certainly have been displayed and sold at the games, so it must have been a fun and colourful affair.

One ancient custom still associated with cross-quarter days, and in particular Lughnasadh, was for a large wagon wheel to be dragged to the top of a hill, covered with tar, and set on fire; then it was blazingly rolled down the hill – perhaps recalling the end of summer, with the flaming disk representing the declining sun deity. This, in Christian times, evolved into the popular firework, the Catherine wheel, since St Catherine of Alexandria (who was intended to be martyred on a wheel but survived miraculously), was commemorated on her feast day at Lammas (though the Church has moved it several times) and the wheel rolling continued as part of her day.

Lughnasadh was seen as a propitious season in which to marry, as food was abundant between the two harvests for the ‘honey moon’, and leisure time was available once the harvest was in. At the Oenach Tailten began a widespread custom called a Tailtean (or Teltown) marriage, similar to neo-Pagan ‘handfasting’, and it only took place at Lughnasadh. Such a marriage lasted only a ‘year and a day’ and could only be dissolved if both parties returned to the Lughnasadh fair. To divorce, the spouses stood back-to-back, then one spouse walked to the north and the other south. This custom carried on well into the 16th century and, like bundling (‘[occupying] the same bed without undressing – said of a man and woman, especially during courtship’ – Webster), which was known even later and certainly in colonial America, was considered proper, even by the Christian Church.

Another of these great Lughnasadh festivals was the Oenach Carmain, the assembly of Carmán the evil sorceress. She, like the Fomorians (evil giants; the people of the other world) came to Ireland from Athens, accompanied by her three ferocious sons. The people of Leinster province, at Carman or Wexford held the Oenach Carmain, once every three years, beginning on Lughnasadh and ending on the sixth, believing that by holding it they would receive various blessings, such as prosperity, and corn, milk, and fruit in abundance, as well as protection from incursions by other provinces. There also were racing, poetic competition, satirical drama, and history, with a strong role played by women, who had political meetings called aireachts. Probably due to the influence of the patriarchal Christian Church, the Oenach Carmain only lasted until the 11th Century.

As well as the sports played at this event, there were marriage contracts made in the ‘Marriage Hollow’. In Europe, the festival of Lughnasadh was also associated with the myth of the marriage of Lugh to Bloddeuedd. This goddess, whose name means ‘face of flowers’, was conjured up out of flowers of oak, broom, and meadowsweet, by Lugh’s uncle, King Math, to be Lugh’s consort. When she later turned out to be an unfaithful wife, she was cursed by Gwydion, brother of the moon goddess Arianrhod, to be forever disturbed by sunlight, and she experienced a shapeshift into an owl, a creature said to be hated by all other birds.

At gatherings of Lammastide, villagers placed offerings of blackberries, acorns, and crab apples in the lap of a maiden dressed in white, seated on the top of a hill, and a dance and procession home would then be held.

Was King William Rufus a pagan sacrifice?
The Celts celebrate the main part of the festival of Lughnasadh from sunset on August 1 until sunset on August 2. On August 2, 1100 English King William Rufus was killed when shot through the eye by an arrow while hunting in the New Forest. Rufus (‘the Red’) was a son of William the Conqueror, and his elder brother, Richard, had also died in the New Forest. Rumours probably abounded that Richard and Rufus were victims of heathen ill will, for William the Conqueror had expelled the dwellers of the New Forest. These were the pagans, for that is what the word pagan originally meant.

\Pagan\ (p[=a]”gan), n. [L. paganus a countryman, peasant, villager, a pagan, fr. paganus of or pertaining to the country, rustic, also, pagan, fr. pagus a district, canton, the country, perh. orig., a district with fixed boundaries: cf. pangere to fasten. Cf. {Painim}, {Peasant}, and {Pact}, also {Heathen}.] Source

Pagans were thus the dwellers in the forest/countryside, whose old religions were at odds with, and ruthlessly suppressed by, monotheistic religions like Christianity and Islam, the hegemonies of which led to the longstanding pejorative connotations of the term.

The legend says that on the night of August 1, Rufus dreamt of his blood reaching to heaven, darkening the sky. The same night, an English monk dreamt that King William Rufus entered a church and picked up a crucifix; he gnawed at Christ’s arm, then the figure kicked him, making him fall backwards, and smoke and flames came out of his mouth. Rufus heard about this dream but dismissed it. The a third dream occurred, and on August 2 a messenger brought Rufus a letter from Abbot Serlo in Gloucester, saying a parishioner had dreamt on the same night of a virgin (the Church) pleading at the feet of Christ to be freed from her oppressor (Rufus), and Jesus had assured her he would. William, who had many enemies, for he was known as an oppressor of England, taxing the people heavily, took no heed of all these prescient warnings.

It’s possible that William the Red was killed by his younger brother who was with him on that hunting trip and was crowned King Henry I almost immediately. Tradition has it that William’s bleeding body was taken by a charcoal burner named Purkiss, to Winchester Palace, and for his kindness he was rewarded with an acre or two of land. (It is interesting to note that a charcoal-burning family named Purkiss still lived on the same land at least as late as the 1880s.)

Sacrificial kingship
It’s widely believed amongst neo-Pagans that William and other kings who died violent deaths on or near Celtic cross-quarter days, such as this one, were actually victims of sacrificial kingship. This ritual of pre-Christian times in Europe was related to giving thanks to the sun for a good harvest. Such sacrifice was also practised in ancient Greece, and the Celts might have acquired the practice from there.

Lughnasadh would be the time for the king to reaffirm his sacred ‘marriage’ to the prosperity of the kingdom. One notes that both the murder of King Olaf of Norway, and his feast day, are close to Lammastide (July 29); sacrificial kingship is also known in other parts of Europe. Also, apparently it is known in Africa: Walby, Celestin, ‘The African Sacrificial Kingship Ritual and Johnson’s Middle Passage’, African American Review 29.4 (1995): 657-669. It has strong connections with the self-sacrifice of Odin in Norse mythology, and to the Christian myth of the Crucifixion and Resurrection.

William Rufus might have been the last pagan sacrifice of a king, and his death disguised for the Christian authorities as a hunting accident. Some of the clergy, by the way, hated Rufus and saw his death as divine judgment, while some contemporary accounts said he was accidentally shot by his friend William Tirel.

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Silliness – A cartoonist was found dead in his home. Details are sketchy.

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