Don’t forget Lupa’s class tomorrow night! Info here: https://ancientlightshop.wordpress.com/calendar/psychic-fair-information/
It’s very quiet, now. There’s almost no breeze and 57F. We’ve gotten most of a quarter of an inch of rain since midnight and Newport apparently got .39 yesterday! Rain was quietly pattering on the skylight all night, putting me back to sleep when I woke. I’ve got ouchy spots bugging me, nothing new except for the squash incident, but it made me wakeful off and on. The barometer is still dropping, supposed to bottom out tomorrow and although this band of clouds with the moisture from down south is mostly past there’s a swirl south of the Aleutians that’s heading our way behind it….
I apologize for the short newsletters over the last several days. The event ate so much of my writing time…and my brain, too. 🙂
Yesterday I got out the door in plenty of time and the calendars were sitting on the porch. They couldn’t show up last Friday?!? So that was nearly first in line once I was at the shop. I had to get them set out for sale and the ones pulled that were special orders. Holly and Kyaara both stopped by to chat and then Hatch popped in and right back out taking care of chores.
I got the financial stuff from the weekend counted. So far it looks as though the event went into the black by $47. …and another plea…. please go look at the advertisers page and at the least tell them thank you for supporting the event! That keeps them motivated to put in an ad for next year.
Debbie and Steve were in. They’re heading home today, but we got a chance to chat and I got my square rounds, bless her heart!
After that I got the rest of my soup and Hatch started toting. We’re pulling most of the boxes out of the back to make room to sort the shelves and then put stuff away. Hopefully, we’ll end up with better organization and fewer boxes.
Hatch trotted back and forth with stuff on the hand truck. I would get up, work for about 3 minutes and then sit back down. *really* tired, iow…. I did get things swept and worked with some of the boxes of small stuff and of herbs that are old enough to need to be composted instead of used and got a lot of the small stuff taken care of. Tempus has to be there for some of the larger pieces.
I sent Hatch home a bit after 5pm since he was falling asleep on his feet and Tempus was on his way. We got home around 6:30. Hatch was already out cold. We crawled into bed, woke around 11 and though Tempus went back to sleep, I ended up reading for awhile before fading out again. It was 10am before I actually really woke.
…and I just had one of those, “Oh, not again!” moments. I talked to someone about being the special guest for December’s Psychic Fair. I know I did. We were talking times and dates….. and I am totally blank on who it was!!!!
…and I’ve been working on this newsletter since 10am, it’s 12:30 and still not out! This is supposed to be a rest day, but everyone has things that have been put off for a couple of weeks while we concentrated on OCPPG. I’m planning on sorting some things into the OCPPG files and then the House Capuchin blog projects. So today we’re planning a big breakfast….well, only to call it by it’s right name because it’s past lunchtime…. and some small chores and *rest*. We’re all really tired, still. Tempus seems to have a cold that I’m hoping not to catch.
No clue what this pic is all about, but it’s pretty!
Today’s Plant is Hawthorn, Crataegus monogyna, known as common hawthorn , may, mayblossom, maythorn, quickthorn, whitethorn, motherdie, and haw. It has edible buds, flowers and fruits, which are full of antioxidants . Particularly sacred to the month of May and to Beltane, it is used extensively as a hedge plant. – Fairy energy, May interfere with digitalis medications. – Masculine, Mars, Fire. – Increases fertility and/or celibacy. Carry on a fishing trip to ensure good catch. Brings happiness to the troubled or depressed. Protects house against lightning and storms, evil ghosts may not enter. In cradles to guard from evil spells. Most Witch’s gardens contained a hawt hedge. Sacred to the fairies, and is part of the tree triad of Britain. More on this species:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Common_hawthorn More on the genus Crataegus here:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crataegus
Today is the birthday in 1797 of Ida Pfeiffer, world-traveler and author. More information here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ida_Pfeiffer She was one of the first of the “lady explorers” and published 7 books about her travels all over the world. She was quite a scandal in her day and didn’t actually begin her travels until her children were grown.
The shop opens at 11am! Fall hours are 11am-6pm Thursday through Monday, although the time that we’re there is drifting earlier with the shorter days. Need something off hours? Give us a call at 541-563-7154 or Facebook or email at firstname.lastname@example.org 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.
Love & Light,
Today’s Astro & Calendar
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 10/23 at 3:57pm. Waning Gibbous (Disseminating) Moon – Best time for draining the energy behind illness, habits or addictions. Magicks of this sort, started now, should be ended before the phase change to the New Moon. Associated God/dess: Hera/Hero, Cybele, Zeus the Conqueror, Mars/Martius, Anansi, Prometheus. Phase ends at the Quarter on 10/15 at 12:12pm.
Goddess Month of Hathor runs from 10/3 – 10/30
Celtic Tree Month of Gort/Ivy – (GORT), Hedera helix L., Sep 30 – Oct 27
Runic half-month of Wunjo/Wyn – October 13-28 – Wyn represents joy, the rune being the shape of a weather vane. The month represents the creation of harmony within the given conditions of the present.
©2014 M. Bartlett, Some parts separately copyright
Gort/Ivy Sep 30 – Oct 27 – Gort – (GORT), ivy – Ivy (Hedera helix L.) is also a vine, growing to 30 m (100 feet) long in beech woods and around human habitations, where it is widely planted as a ground cover. Ivy produces greenish flowers before Samhain on short, vertical shrubby branches. The leaves of these flowering branches lack the characteristic lobes of the leaves of the rest of the plant. Like holly, ivy is evergreen, its dark green leaves striking in the bare forests of midwinter. Ivy is widely cultivated in North America. It is a member of the Ginseng family (Araliaceae).
Gort – Ivy Ogam letter correspondences
Color: Sky Blue
Meaning: Take time to soul search or you will maake a wrong decision.
to study this month Uilleand – Honeysuckle Ogam letter correspondences
Letter: P, PE, UI
Meaning: Proceed with caution.
Tides for Alsea Bay
Day High Tide Height Sunrise Moon Time % Moon
~ /Low Time Feet Sunset Visible
Tu 14 High 5:58 AM 6.2 7:30 AM Set 1:42 PM 68
~ 14 Low 11:28 AM 3.2 6:34 PM Rise 11:38 PM
~ 14 High 5:13 PM 6.9
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – There’s a fine line between fishing and just standing on the shore like an idiot.
~ A man who exposes himself when he is intoxicated, has not the art of getting drunk. – Dr. Samuel Johnson (1709-1784) English writer, lexicographer
~ He who waits to do a great deal of good at once, will never do anything. – Samuel Johnson
~ Straighten up your room first, then the world. – Jeff Jordan
~ A man sets out to draw the world. As the years go by, he peoples a space with images of provinces, kingdoms, mountains, bays, ships, islands, fishes, rooms, instruments, stars, horses, and individuals. A short time before he dies, he discovers that the patient labyrinth of lines traces the lineaments of his own face.” – Jorge Luis B..
Criswell: Greetings, my friends. We are all interested in the future, for that is where you and I are going to spend the rest of our lives. And remember, my friends, future events such as these will affect you in the future.
Criswell: The ever-beautiful flowers she had planted with her own hands became nothing more than the lost roses of her cheeks.
Criswell: My friend, you have seen this incident, based on sworn testimony. Can you prove that it didn’t happen?
Criswell: Perhaps, on your way home, someone will pass you in the dark, and you will never know it… for they will be from outer space. – The Amazing Criswell, American psychic and actor, born on August 18, 1907; quotes above from Plan 9 from Outer Space
SAMHAIN — CELTIC ROOTS OF HALLOWE’EN
|Even a newspaper man, if you entice him into a cemetery at midnight, will believe in phantoms, for every one is a visionary, if you scratch him deep enough. But the Celt is a visionary without the scratching. — W. B. Yeats, 1888Fairy and Folk Tales of the Irish Peasantry|
Rooted in so many different European traditions, it’s curious to think that Hallowe’en may be the holiday that best embodies the persistence of our culture. All Europeans observe some version of this celebration of night and the unconscious; and we do so with a remarkable consistency. The distinctions between England’s Bonfire Night and our Hallowe’en are so superficial that common and abiding origins can be discerned almost “without the scratching”. Our society may be altered beyond all recognition (not to mention endurance), but we still want our children to experience the kind of Hallowe’en we knew.
Hallowe’en is not an official holiday. No one gets the day off work. Yet, year after year, we just go ahead and celebrate anyway. Year after year, allegations of devil-worship and Satanic ritual are quietly ignored. And in a day when so many of our holidays are in retreat, Hallowe’en prospers. What accounts for this decidedly un-Canadian determination to see that it does?
In prehistoric Europe, these crucial few days (October 31 to November 2) were redolent with beginnings and endings.
By now, the crops were meant to be in, animals would have been brought down from distant pasture, and thanks given for this bounty. Here, past, present and future met to mark, not just the end of summer, but the advent of the Celtic New Year. As with many archaic societies, the Celts’ day began at dusk; their year likewise commenced as darkness gathered. While Samhain (Sah-win) — literally – “the day between years” — incorporated aspects of our Thanksgiving, their feast was more profound — a kind of cornucopia of infinite dimension. Samhain was the occasion to honour the ancients and celebrate that most primordial of mysteries — the conclusion of the growth cycle and the implicit promise of renewal and rebirth encoded therein. Admirers of Eastern philosophy will be disappointed to know that the Celts celebrated the opposing aspects of darkness/light, night/day, cold/warmth, death/life long before the concept of yin and yang was patiently explained to Western dummies.
At this time, when distinctions between life and death were obscured, supernatural forces were presumed to extend to the world inhabited by men. At Samhain, souls of the recently deceased set out for their journey to the otherworld. With the veil between the worlds now so thin and permeable, the spirits of departed kinsmen were thought to seek out the warmth and comfort of good cheer as the time for their leave-taking approached. These were not the ghoulish undead of our Hallowe’en fantasies, but enlightened spirit guides and guardians of the wisdom of the tribe. People made offerings of animals, fruits, vegetables — and fire. Fire was sacred to the Celts and their great bonfires were meant to aid and light the souls on their way (and possibly, to keep them at bay). It was a time of heightened spirituality, of divination, and of fear. It was a dangerous time for men, when ghosts, fairies, and demons might be abroad.
This Celtic inheritance is of enormous significance to North Americans because, whether or not we realize it, most of us have Celtic blood running through our veins. At its height during the 3rd century B.C., the Celtic World was enormous; ranging from southern Spain to the Caucasus from the North Sea to the Mediterranean. That great, untamed empire of individualists was unconquered and ununified by any external force (save culture) from its appearance in the 8th century B.C. until the advent of Christianity. Most of us are vaguely aware that the early Christian church accommodated the old Celtic traditions of Yule (Christmas), Ostara (Easter), and Samhain or Hallowe’en (All Hallows Eve), but this was hardly the remarkable concession we moderns might imagine. In a world dominated by natural rhythms, the waxing and waning of sun and moon would tend to dictate division of the year the world over. Indeed, this season was sacred to the ancient Egyptians (worship of Isis), Native Americans (dances), and the Indo-European Hindus (Diwali or New Year).
In A.D. 601 Pope Gregory I issued an edict to his missionaries, instructing them to refrain from destroying local objects of worship, and consecrate them to Christ instead. This tolerance was to be short lived. The church came to realize that the mere act of sprinkling a little holy water on pagan rites was insufficient to “rehabilitate” them. It wasn’t long before the people’s experiences with the old beliefs were condemned as evidence of witchcraft and the old gods came to serve as a template for Satan (a wholly Christian concept). In 1248, Pope Innocent IV founded The Holy Office, better known to us as The Inquisition. By 1484, Pope Innocent VII had appointed Heinrich Kramer and Jakob Sprenger as inquisitors. Their “Malleus Maleficarum” described in exquisite detail, the tortures that might be employed to obtain a confession of witchcraft.
Christianity transformed Cernunnos, the horned god of the male aspect, of virility, and protector of woodland animals, into the embodiment of evil, the incubus, Satan
The rudiments of our Hallowe’en festivities probably hearken back to our most remote origins: certainly, the donning of costumes, the ritual giving of food, and the preeminence of fire are all elements that would have been familiar to our European ancestors. However, their very persistence over the many intervening centuries indicates that Hallowe’en observances may serve some more vital psychic need.
“Celtic society, like all early societies, was highly structured and organized, everyone knew their place. But to allow that order to be psychologically comfortable, the Celts knew that there had to be a time when order and structure were abolished, when chaos could reign. And Samhain, was such a time. Time was abolished for the three days of this festival and people did crazy things, men dressed as women and women as men. Farmer’s gates were unhinged and left in ditches, people’s horses were moved to different fields, and children would go knock on neighbors’’ doors for food and treats in a way that we still find today.” — Philip Carr-Gomm, “Elements of the Druid Tradition”
Samhain’s visceral appeal remains immediate enough to keep today’s experts arguing about the nature of the feast. Some modern Christians insist that observances were bloodthirsty (abductions, human sacrifices, a blob of human fat sputtering cozily in a lantern).
Modern pagans dismiss this as nonsense, asserting that the feast was profoundly religious, providing an occasion to honor ancestors — not to increase their numbers. Curiously, both factions are prepared to agree that natural law would have been suspended for the duration. On the eve of Samhain, every home allowed the hearth fire to burn out, whether this was to make the house an unappealingly cold target for ghosts, or to facilitate a ritual relighting of the fires from a sacred source on New Year’s Day depends upon your understanding of the holiday’s purpose. Resisting subsequent cultural overlays and prohibitions, the most essential features of the old Druidic rites survive to this day. Ironically, even within the church itself, where costumes or vestments are donned, food is ritually given and candles lit to commemorate the souls of the dead.
When the Romans conquered Britain, they brought with them their November 1st festival honouring Pomona, goddess of fruiting trees. This accorded with existing Celtic ideas about the worthy apple. The growth cycle of the apple was reckoned such a miraculous thing that Avalon, (that Western land where spirits of the dead dwelled) was distinguished by an abundance of apple trees bearing fruit year round. Divination games with apples were important at Samhain; it was said that the first to “get a bite” bobbing for apples would marry in the coming year. Even good Christian children today recite the alphabet as they twist the stem from an apple to discover the first letter of their beloved’s name.
Supernatural properties were historically ascribed to the jack-o’-lantern as well. There is a poisonous yellowish-orange mushroom called Jack-o’-Lantern that appears to “glow” in the dark. Jack-o’-lantern was another name for will-o’-the-wisp, fox fire or corpse candle. Called marsh gas by unromantic scientific types, this small flame moving through the darkness must have terrified the ancients. Thus, putting a Jack-o’-lantern in a window to frighten off fairies and other troublemakers was already an old practice when the world was young.
Not surprisingly, the most agreeable origin story comes from an Irish folk tale. “Jack” was an incorrigible drunkard and practical jokester who managed to trick Satan into climbing a tree. Once Old Nick was up, Jack carved a cross in the trunk and trapped him there. Then, Jack pressed his advantage (and his luck) to dictate the terms of a deal; if the devil would promise to never tempt him again, Jack might just be persuaded to let him down. Poor Jack. His misdeeds caught up with him right enough when he died. Barred from heaven as a drunken lout, he was equally well-remembered by the devil, who refused him the sanctuary even of hell. When Satan was kind enough to fling a burning ember at the impudent sod, Jack scooped it up for a makeshift turnip lantern. There goes Jack, doomed to wander the cold, dark ways of the netherworld through eternity. Here’s living proof that you can’t bargain with the devil (though it may be useful to know that there are turnips in hell). When the ideally suited New World pumpkin made its debut, the rusticated turnip was retired.
In the eighth century, Pope Gregory III decreed that All Saints’ Day should be “moved” from May 13th. The day devoted to all the hallowed ones, “All Hallows” or “All Saints” Day, was now November 1, and the day following that (November 2), “Hallow Tide” or “All Souls” Day was set aside to honour those who had not been saints. Thus, the evening preceding all this — (October 31) — was “All Hallow E’en”. “Here we can see most clearly the way in which Christianity built on the pagan foundations it found rooted in these [British] isles. Not only does the purpose of the festival match with the earlier one, but even the unusual length of the festival is the same.” Philip Carr-Gomm, “Elements of the Druid Tradition.”
The tradition of going from house to house wassailing, (caroling in exchange for a reward at each door) was a tradition associated with all the major Celtic festivals, although the “treat” would likely have been of the liquid variety. “Begging” food goes back to mummers and guisers, but really came into its own with the practice of “souling” during the 9th century. On All Souls Day, beggars (and later children) went from house to house in search of “soul cakes” (a lump of bannock bread baked with currants). The donor’s pious charity guaranteed the recipient’s prayers to speed the souls of dead relations heavenward from purgatory. A similar practice survives today under the Eastern Orthodox rite. On Crete, for example, each family prepares a tureen of boiled wheat “berries”, pomegranate seed, raisins, currants and almonds which is carried through the village. At each house, a little is portioned out and a little of that householder’s added to the mix. By the end of the day, each villager brings home a (theoretically) identical mixture to honor all the departed.
There is nothing intrinsically evil about Hallowe’en. The celebration we know today is equal parts Celtic pagan and Mediaeval Christian prayer ritual. So successfully have they blended that where the one leaves off and the other begins is now impossible to discern. Hallowe’en ought to be that happy circumstance where the Christian overlay complements older practices, but the one seems to be eternally damned at the eternal expense of the other. The annual Hallowe’en squabble guarantees that another feast utterly unique to us is hobbled, thanks to our imperfect understanding of our own heritage. It’s especially galling that those who would treat a gaggle of candy-munching miniature ghouls and ballerinas like devil worshippers are the very people who most deplore the loss of that other sacred pagan/Christian tradition — Christmas. Unfortunately, this is all as predictable as a flea-tormented dog snapping at its own tail. What can we expect when every one of our traditions either “excludes” or “exploits” somebody, hurts somebody else’s feelings, or (the worst sin of all) keeps OUR culture viable and fertile. Are fundamentalists NOT offended when un-costumed little new Canadians come calling at their door for the free candy? It’s a growing trend, and one that casts an entirely new, bittersweet light on the phrase “trick or treat”.
For pagan and Christian alike, this was a time of remembering and reverence for those who came before us. However, since it seems to need emphasis, it was also an opportunity for people who lived short, hard lives to look to their full larder, to laugh at the devil and tweak his nose. It was supposed to be fun.
The great secret about Hallowe’en is this: the very act of remembering the dead means that you are not yet numbered among them. That ought to be irreverent enough for anyone.
- Celts & Saxons Homepage – superb! positive message, informative, great links
- Neutering Hallowe’en Safety and sensitivity “issues” (Ontario) http://www.netfix.com/poptart/hallo.htm
- Razorblades in Apples? I thought so!
- Human Sacrifices, Devil Worship, a “Christian” View http://home.computer.net/~cya/cy00116.html
- Debunking the “Evil” of Hallowe’en
- Literature of Horror, huge database authors and texts
- The Raven – Edgar Allan Poe
- Annual birthday Tribute to Poe http://www.startext.net/news/doc/1047/1:ENTNEWS24/1:ENTNEWS24011998.html
- Everything for the Bat Enthusiast http://www.batcon.org/
- Gruesome Urban Myths http://www.snopes.com/
- European Folk Tales of Witches http://www.pitt.edu/~dash/witch.html
- Malleus Maleficarum ~ (Hammer of Witches) 1484 http://www.witchcraft.simplenet.com/malleus.html