Herbs Outdoors at 3pm!
I had a pretty good day yesterday even if it seemed all too short. I worked on the Beltane files in the morning in between chores and then gutted the costume closet with a friend looking for costumes for her and her family. I did a little cleaning in the dining room, sorting out some picnic gear that needed to be put away and then took a nap and read for awhile.
I sat in my study yesterday afternoon, both groaning and laughing. Tempus was talking to a friend about the new Nemo movie and their favorite characters. He said, “Dory rocks!” …and then thoughtfully added, “Even if she *is* a little dinghy….”
During the evening I worked on more of the sorting and filing project, trying to find the pictures that I need for the website updates. We’ve got a tera-byte drive that all of that has been transferred to, but I need to sort it. It didn’t quite get the turned-over-and-drawers-pulled-out treatment that the files did from the previous computer crash, but it’s bad enough.
Late in the evening, after Tempus came back from running a few errands, we made a pizza, which was the night’s substantial snack, since dinner was rather light, and today’s lunch, so that I can concentrate on feast cooking….
Thanks be to Thee, my Lord Jesus Christ
For all the benefits Thou hast given me,
For all the pains and insults Thou hast borne for me.
O most merciful Redeemer, friend and brother,
May I know Thee more clearly,
Love Thee more dearly,
Follow Thee more nearly.
More here with links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_of_Chichester
Today’s plant is Oregon Iris, Iris tenax. I grew up calling Iris flowers “ladies’ ball gowns”. Local peoples used the tough leaves for making string and rope mostly for snares. Feminine, Venus, Water, sacred to Iris and Juno, their magicks are used for purification and magicks including 3’s. The three petals stand for faith, wisdom and valor and can be used in magicks to promote these qualities. More on Oregon Iris here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iris_tenax More on Iris in general here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iris_%28plant%29
The shop is closed today, back on standard Spring hours. Those are 11am-7pm Thursday 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! In case of bad weather, check here at the blog for updates, on our Facebook as Ancient Light or call the shop at 541-563-7154.
Love & Light,
Today’s Astro & Calendar
The Moon is a Waning Crescent. Waning Moon Magick – From the Full Moon to the New is a time for study, meditation, and magic designed to banish harmful energies and habits, for ridding oneself of addictions, illness or negativity. Remember: what goes up must come down. Phase ends at the Tide Change on 4/10 at 2:35am. Waning Crescent Moon – Best time for beginning introspective magicks that are more long term (full year cycle) A good time for beginning knot magicks to “bind up” addictions and illness (finish just before the Tide Change of Dark to New) and “tying up loose ends” God/dess aspects – Demeter weeping for her Daughter, Mabon, Arachne Tyr. Phase ends on 4/6 at 12:25am.
Goddess Month of Columbina runs from 3/20 – 4/17
Celtic Tree Month of Fearn/Alder, Mar 18 – Apr 14
Runic half-month of Ehwaz, 3/30-4/13 – Ehwaz, the horse; time of partnership between humans and Nature, as between rider and horse. Nigel Pennick, The Pagan Book of Days, Destiny Books, Rochester, Vermont, USA, 1992, p. 55
©2013 M. Bartlett, Some parts separately copyright
Fearn/Alder, Mar 18 – Apr 14 – Fern – (FAIR-n) – The common alder (Alnus glutinosa (L.) Gaertner) is common along lowland rivers, where it grows with aspens, poplars, and willows. Like willows, alders sprout from stumps. This allows them to regenerate after heavy flooding. In protect sites they may grow to 20 m (65 feet) tall. Their leaves are more blunt-tipped than most North American alders, which look more like the grey alder (A. incana (L.) Moench). This species is more common in the mountains of Europe, and is not restricted to moist soils. Like ashes, European alders are not widely cultivated in North American (they are often sold as black alders), but several native species are. Alder wood is said to resist rotting when it is wet, and was the wood of choice for pilings in many regions. Alders are members of the Birch family (Betulaceae).
Fearn – Alder Ogam letter correspondences
Letter: F, V
Meaning: Help in making choices; spiritual guidance and protection.
Tides for Alsea Bay
Day High Tide Height Sunrise Moon Time % Moon
~ /Low Time Feet Sunset Visible
W 3 Low 12:31 AM 3.0 6:53 AM Rise 2:53 AM 53
~ 3 High 6:28 AM 7.3 7:46 PM Set 12:51 PM
~ 3 Low 1:37 PM 0.2
~ 3 High 8:18 PM 6.2
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – Laughter is a direct route to the soul. It broadens your perspective, keeps you healthy and makes any unbearable situation easier to deal with.
Journal Prompt – What is? – What is the best way to learn? Through lectures or by hands-on experiences? By discussing or by observing the concepts in action? Develop a plan for an ideal class, including your ideas about these questions.
~ How strangely will the Tools of a Tyrant pervert the plain Meaning of Words! – Samuel Adams (1722-1803) US patriot
~ I just put on what the lady says. I’ve been married three times, so I’ve had lots of supervision. – Upton Sinclair (1878-1968) US writer
~ I know we can’t abolish prejudice through laws, but we can set up guidelines for our actions by legislation. – Belva Lockwood (1830-1917) US
~ I will not let anyone walk through my mind with their dirty feet. – Mahatma Gandhi
All I ask is that, in the midst of a murderous world, we agree to reflect on murder and to make a choice. After that, we can distinguish those who accept the consequences of being murderers themselves or the accomplices of murderers, and those who refuse to do so with all their force and being. Since this terrible dividing line does actually exist, it will be a gain if it be clearly marked. Over the expanse of five continents throughout the coming years an endless struggle is going to be pursued between violence and friendly persuasion, a struggle in which, granted, the former has a thousand times the chances of success than that of the latter. But I have always held that, if he who bases his hopes on human nature is a fool, he who gives up in the face of circumstances is a coward. And henceforth, the only honourable course will be to stake everything on a formidable gamble: that words are more powerful than munitions. – Albert Camus; ‘Neither Victims nor Executioners’
Magick – Beltane
Constructing a Maypole – The Maypole of Beltane stands for the combination of the fertility of the Divine Masculine when joined with the Divine Feminine. No one knows the ancient roots of the ceremony, but the symbolism is obvious. Instructions here work for a Maypole for between 10 & 20 people. This is a lot of prep work, but massive amounts of fun!
There are several parts to a Maypole: the pole itself, the foundation, the ribbons, the wreath and the topper.
This can be of almost any material, but unless you live in a forest, where there are slender (2” -3”) straight trees with few branches, the most practical is a piece of closet pole from a lumberyard! Get it cut from 10-12 feet long.
At the same time buy a length of 1/8 inch dowel. Drill a hole in one end at least 1 ½ inches deep.
Drill 3 holes about 8” down from that end of the long pole, spaced equidistant around the pole. They should be to 1/8 inch diameter and about a 1/4 to ½ inch deep.
Cut 4 pieces of dowel 8 inches long. Make sure that they are loose in the holes, but don’t just fall out. You will balance the wreath on these dowels.
Save the 4th piece of dowel for the “topper”.
You will need to dig a hole in the ground at least a foot deep, (better yet, two!) and be prepared to tamp the dirt back in very, very hard. Some people have tried to use “portable holes” for this, but since they are no more than 8 inches long they usually fail and someone gets knocked on the head! We had good success one year using a round, folding picnic table with an umbrella hole in the center and tamping the pole in about 6” or so into beach sand. It leaned badly, although it didn’t fall. (The table became the ritual altar). You can also construct a stand for holding the pole upright, but try it several ways, yanking on it, because when the dancers get going the pole had better not fall over. The stand will usually have to support the pole up to 3 feet off the ground to give it any stability.
Brightly colored ribbon is the traditional material. I have heard of folks using macramé cord, rope and yarn for this, as well. We have used surveyors tape several times now, because it is strong, bright and inexpensive. Do *not* use florist’s ribbon with the cut edges! Those edges *cut* and you don’t want your dancers bleeding. This ritual doesn’t call for blood sacrifice. J Cut the ribbons ½ again the length of the pole, iow for an 8 foot pole, cut ribbons 12 feet long, one per person, but always an even number.
You need a 12” wreath. This is often constructed of hawthorn, but again, no need for blood sacrifice, so most folks use a grapevine wreath base that you can get at a craft store and stick fresh flowers in it.
If you weave your own, you need a wire ring, 12” diameter, thread and freshly-cut flowers & herbs. I often use rosemary, since it smells great and holds up.
Tie your thread to the wire ring and then begin wrapping around and around (about 1” distance per wrap), laying a new branch of rosemary in when about ½ of the previous one is tied down. Try not to catch the needles or smaller branches in the thread. Tie off when about 1/3 of the way around, again about another 1/3 and when you get all the way around.
As you go around a 2nd time, add at least 1 flower with each wrap, tying off with each 1/3 of the wreath. You can make a 3rd pass if you don’t add enough flowers on the 2nd pass.
Maypole Topper – cones of various trees follow the correspondences.
Gather 9 spruce cones (the long slender type), one larger cone (a large pine cone), and a double handful of alder/larch cones. You also need a small bunch of babies’ breath.
Drill a hole longways through the largest cone (two sets of hands are necessary!). Insert the last piece of dowel leaving about 4 inches sticking out the bottom of the cone.
Using a hot glue gun, glue 3 of the spruce cones spaced equidistant around the larger cone, all pointing the same way.
Glue 3 more with their bottoms touching the dowel and between the bases of the other spruce cones.
Repeat with the last three on the top of the construct, only glue the babies’ breath at the very top between the cones. Fill in spaces with the alder cones.
You can decorate with gold glitter and/or spangles
Assembling the pole
Get your hole dug first. Hang the wreath near the drilled end of the pole. Add your topper by inserting the dowel into the hole in the pole. Count noses for your group and tack as many ribbons on as there are noses as near the end of the pole as possible. Carefully insert the dowels into the other holes with the ribbons in 3 bunches between them, then set up the pole. If you are careful as you lift the pole the wreath will drop onto the small dowels without dislodging anything. Patience or a tall enough ladder is required!
To “Dance the Pole”
Space all your dancers around the pole as equidistant as possible. Each takes a ribbon and pulls it outwards until they are holding only about 2 feet of ribbon in their hands. Usually this will knock the dowels loose and the ribbon will be holding up the wreath. If they don’t, shake the ribbons closest to the dowels while folks are holding theirs tight
Have them count off “1, 2, 1, 2…” then tell the “ones” to face left and the “twos” to face right. Go around the first person on the right, those on the inside ducking under the ribbon, then pass the next on the left and so on. Talk them through a bit of it and then get someone to sing or drum or whatever you have. As the ribbons weave around the pole the wreath will gradually drop. When you’re done, or everyone’s ready to drop, gather the ribbons in two bunches and tie in a “true love knot”, i.e. a square knot.
It’ll be a bit of a mess, no matter what you do. Laugh, sing and play!
©2009 Anja Bartlett
Silliness – The Top 10 Ways To Annoy A Pagan – Home -> Humour -> Pagan Humour – Author Unknown – Posted: Aug. 8th/00
10. Sayyyyyyy, is that a Jewish star?
9. No, then you must listen to Motley Crue, right? Not that, either? I know, it’s a … a … Pentacost, right?
8. You guys really worship the devil, huh? Cool, I, like, listen to Black Sabbath, like, all the time, dude.
7. Oh, you’re a Witch! I’m like, totally into, like, Goddess Consciousness. I sleep with a crystal every night, and have an Atlantean spirit guide. Will you teach me all the secrets of your religion?
6. I hear you Pagans do all your stuff in the nude. Wanna show me?
5. You will all burn in Hell. The Goddess is really Satan in drag. You don’t believe in Satan? Boy, does he have you fooled!
4. Fascinating. I’m a sociologist; may I study you as a phenomenon?
3. Do you really believe in all that nonsense?
2. You worship the Goddess? Poor thing; you obviously haven’t heard about Jesus. Here, let me tell you…
And (drum roll, please):
1. You’re a witch, huh? Well, I’m initated at a higher level than you. I was initated (that’s how you say it right, you know) at the age of seven by my grandmother, who was the last of the Atlantean Trad Elvish Ninja Masters. I don’t suppose YOU have any lineage.
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