Lighted House Count – 389
Minus Tide at 6:10 PM of -1.6 feet.
The sky is mostly a blank white, with some low clouds puddling on the Coast Range. There’s only an occasional light gust of wind. Otherwise it’s still, 42F by the computer, but the phone company thermometer was reading 38F. It looks like other than traces we’re not likely to see much of the interesting winter weather that’s going to be hitting the Valley and the north coast. We’re not due for much precipitation until the middle of next week!
Yesterday was busy. We had a lot of customers in and a couple of suppliers stopped by. Wwe’ve more Merkaba pendulums hearts, some nice pendants, large and small and those large quartz pieces on the right are just amazing. The biggest one has a rainbow flash. That pyramid is shungite.
Class went well last night. This is a *great* bunch of students, although the classes are running long because we go off on tangents. (Ok, back to Gardner for the 15th time….:-) ) We’re finally done with lesson one, so on to morality and ethics next week. We’re going to have to take a day off over the holiday because of folks who are traveling.
Today the wreath lady was in to pick up her stock. Tempus is out running errands and I have to catch up on writing that didn’t happen yesterday. This evening he has a paper run and I’m looking forward to some writing time and then finishing the paper route under the full moon! It’s going to be lovely!
Ken Gagne got another pic of the wild ocean 12/12/15.
Today’s Plant is Yarrow, Achillea millefolium. This plant is often called woundwort or nosebleed because of its clotting properties and is used for fevers and infections because it has salicylates (aspirin) in it. The young leaves can be eaten and it becomes and aid to vision-work. It’s easy to grow and makes a great companion plant. We have mostly the pacifica and californica varieties out here. Leaf – Feminine, Venus, Water. Exorcism – Wear to protect – hold in hand to stop fear – hang over bed for lasting love – carry for love and bring friends and contact with relatives. Flower – Feminine, Venus, Water– flowers made into tea for psychic power, Exorcism, protection, stop fear, lasting love. More info here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yarrow
Today’s feast is Santa Lucia, Saint Lucy, whose name means “Light”. One of the nicer customs around the world is that in Scandinavia the daughters of the family serve everyone coffee and sweet rolls this morning as a “thank you” for the year. More here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_Lucy%27s_Day
The shop opens at 11am! Winter Hours are 11am-5pm Thursday through Monday, although we’re there a lot later most nights. 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
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. Phase ends at the Tide Change on 12/13 at 4:06pm. Full Moon – The day of the day before and day after the true Full Moon. “And better it be when the moon is full!”! Prime time for rituals for prophecy, for spells to come to fruition, infusing health and wholeness, etc. A good time for invoking deity. FRUITION Manifesting goals, nurturing, passion, healing, strength, power. Workings on this day are for protection, divination. “extra power”, job hunting, healing serious conditions Also, love, knowledge, legal undertakings, money and dreams. God/dess Aspect: Mother/Abundance/Kingship – – Associated God/desses: Danu, Cerridwen, Gaia, Aphrodite, Isis, Jupiter, Amon-Ra. Phase ends on 12/15 at 4:06am. 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 12/28 at 10:53pm.
Full supermoon (exactly full at 7:05 p.m. EST). The Moon, slightly larger and brighter than the average full Moon, shines between Orion, Taurus, and Gemini.
The Geminid meteor shower should be at its strongest late tonight — but that extra-bright full Moon is in the same part of the sky as the shower’s radiant! There will be no moonless period from dusk to dawn. Still, Geminid fireballs are not uncommon. You may see a dozen or more meteors per hour by 10 or 11 p.m. even through the moonlight, as the radiant climbs high in the east. Watch in a direction that keeps the glary Moon itself out of your vision. The Geminid radiant passes overhead (for skywatchers at mid-northern latitudes) around 2 a.m. See Bob King’s Supermoon and Geminids Duke It Out.
Jupiter (magnitude –1.8, in Virgo) rises around 2 a.m. and shines brightly in high the southeast by early dawn. Look for Spica 6° lower left of it at that time, and Arcturus 30° its upper left.
Goddess Month of Astrea runs from 11/28 – 12/25
Celtic Tree Month of Ruis/Elder Nov 25 – Dec 22
Runic half-month of Jera/ Jara 12/13-12/27 – Jara signifies the completion of natural cycles, such as fruition, and has a more transcendent meaning of mystic marriage of Earth and Cosmos. *Ø* Wilson’s Almanac free daily ezine | Book of Days | December 13
©2016 M. Bartlett, Some parts separately copyright
Ruis Elder Nov 25 – Dec 22 – Ruis – (RWEESH), elder – Celtic tree month of Ruis (Elder) commences (Nov 25 – Dec 22) – Like other Iron Age Europeans, the Celts were a polytheistic people prior to their conversion to (Celtic) Christianity. The Celts divided the year into 13 lunar cycles (months or moons). These were linked to specific sacred trees which gave each moon its name. Today commences the Celtic tree month of Elder.
Elder or Elderberry (Sambucus) is a genus of fast-growing shrubs or small trees in the family Caprifoliaceae. They bear bunches of small white or cream coloured flowers in the Spring, that are followed by bunches of small red, bluish or black berries. The berries are a very valuable food resource for many birds. Common North American species include American Elder, Sambucus canadensis, in the east, and Blueberry Elder, Sambucus glauca, in the west; both have blue-black berries. The common European species is the Common or Black Elder, Sambucus nigra, with black berries.
The common elder (Sambucus nigra L.) is a shrub growing to 10 m (33 feet) in damp clearings, along the edge of woods, and especially near habitations. Elders are grown for their blackish berries, which are used for preserves and wine. The leaf scars have the shape of a crescent moon. Elder branches have a broad spongy pith in their centers, much like the marrow of long bones, and an elder branch stripped of its bark is very bone-like. The red elder (S. racemosa L.) is a similar plant at higher elevations; it grows to 5 m (15 feet). Red elder extends its native range to northern North America, and it is cultivated along with other native species, but common elders are seldom seen in cultivation. Elders are in the Honeysuckle family (Caprifoliaceae).
Secret of the Unhewn Stone, Dec 23 – (This is the blank day in this calendar, the one day of the year that is not ruled by a tree and its corresponding Ogham alphabet character. Its name denotes the quality of potential in all things.)
Graves (1966) makes a case for an additional “blank” ogham, “the unhewn dolmen arch”, which he assigns to the mistletoe, a plant for which there is abundant evidence of its ritual importance to the Celts. There are two common mistletoes in Europe, both of which live as parasites on trees. The common mistletoe (Viscum album L.) parasitizes many tree species, including oaks in the western part of its range. It forms white berries between Samhain and Yule. The yellow-berried mistletoe (Loranthus europaeus L.) does not extend to western Europe. It is found primarily on oaks. It is most likely the “golden bough”, being more common in the eastern Mediterranean than the common mistletoe. The common mistletoe has been cultivated in North American for the Yule trade, and there are several native mistletoes in the genus Phoradendron. Mistletoes are in the Mistletoe family (Viscaceae).
Tides for Alsea Bay
Day High Tide Height Sunrise Moon Time % Moon
~ /Low Time Feet Sunset Visible
Tu 13 Low 5:11 AM 2.3 7:45 AM Set 7:02 AM 97
~ 13 High 11:09 AM 9.7 4:37 PM Rise 4:58 PM
~ 13 Low 6:10 PM -1.6
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – Live life to the fullest! Believe in your dream!
~ He was staring at the instruments with the air of one who is trying to convert Fahrenheit to centigrade in his head while his house is burning down. – Douglas Adams in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy
~ A man ought to read just as inclination leads him, for what he reads as a task will do him little good. – Dr. Samuel Johnson (1709-1784) English writer, lexicographer
~ Why in a country of free speech, are there phone bills? – Steven Wright
~ The person who can be only serious or only cheerful, is but half a man. – Leigh Hunt (1784-1859) English writer – Mark Twain
Now, the energies of nature are present in the outer world, but also inside ourselves, because we are particles of nature. So when you are meditating on a deity, you are meditating on powers of your own spirit and psyche, and on powers that are also out there. One finds in practically all the religious traditions of the world (with a few exceptions) that the aim is for the individual to put himself into accord with nature, with his nature, and that’s both physical and psychological health. These are what in our traditions are called the nature religions, and the deities are not final terms; they are references to spiritual energies. So when mythology is properly understood, the object that is revered and venerated is not a final term; the object venerated is a personification of an energy that dwells within the individual, and the reference of mythology has two modes—that of consciousness and that of the spiritual potentials within the individual. – Joseph Campbell, Goddesses: Mysteries of the Sacred Feminine
Winter Solstice 2000
On December 21, the longest night of the year stretches endlessly before us. We stand in the darkness watching, waiting for dawn. This is a precarious moment. For our ancestors it was a matter of life and death. What if the sun did not return? We of course have modern science to reassure us, but just as we have our own sources of incandescence, we have our own sources of darkness. For three days until the sun begins to move forward at Midwinter on December 24th, we look up at the dark sky, and just like those who came before us, we consider the cycles of life and light, and we trust.
Many centuries before the arrival of the Celts, the earliest inhabitants of Ireland built a monument to the sun. Brugh na Boinne, now known as Newgrange, served a variety of purposes, many of which remain a mystery to us. What we do know is that the deepest recess of this womb-like structure is illuminated by the sun on only one day of the year – Winter Solstice. The stones outside the chamber were carved with spirals, symbols of renewal, to punctuate the unwritten articles of faith that sustained the ancient world.
Midwinter is known by many names. It is Yule, or Yula in the original Anglo Saxon, meaning wheel of the year. It is also Alban Arthan, from the British word bright and the Welsh reference to the constellation of the Great Bear in the winter sky. Alban Arthuan is a later adaptation to honor Arthur, King of Britain, believed to have been born at Winter Solstice. In fact, many cultural heroes were celebrated at this time of year: in Egypt, it was Horus; the Greeks noted Apollo and Dionysus; and the Roman cult of Mithra outlived its originators for centuries. Each of these figures was associated with accounts of birth, death and resurrection.
It is no wonder that the fathers of early Christianity chose Midwinter to commemorate the birth of Christ. The infant’s exact birthdate was unknown and originally observed on a moving calendar, but in 320 C.E., the Catholic Church in Rome officially designated December 25th. By the Sixth Century, the date was set aside as a civic holiday, and in 567 C.E., the Council of Tours proclaimed sacred the twelve days between Christmas and Epiphany.
Few of us celebrate a full twelve days anymore, but whether we realize it or not, many of our current customs are old, ancient in fact, most predating Christianity. The mistletoe we buy in small packets was once cut with golden sickles by Druids on the sixth night of the moon. It was believed to be a magical aphrodisiac, and like holly and ivy, was a symbol of fertility and everlasting life. The Yule log, which warmed the hearth of many a Celt, was cut of ash. Lit on Solstice and kindled by the remains of the previous year’s log, it burned for twelve hours, each hour to guarantee prosperity and health for the upcoming twelve months.
Over time, the British Isles were occupied by many different peoples, and each culture left its mark. While many of today’s most beloved Christmas traditions did not come directly from the Celts, we can be sure they integrated other influences. For example, Santa and his reindeer are directly connected to Norse shamanism. The Christmas tree, possibly Germanic in origin but probably much older, brought the outside indoors. It was lit with candles and burned at the end of the Solstice cycle. In the spring, its ashes enriched the soil for planting.
Common to celebrations ancient and modern, pagan and Christian, is the preservation of light, and even of life itself, at the darkest time of the year, sometimes against all odds. Our chances of survival are much greater if we live in community, be it our clan, tribe, family of birth or family of choice. The traditions of sending seasonal greetings, of exchanging gifts and sharing a feast reinforce our bonds with each other.
This is the beauty of Midwinter. At a time when we face the darkness, we need not be alone. With each token of affection and expression of gratitude shared with loved ones, with each friendship renewed, we recall the spirit of the season. And with each time-honored tradition, we invoke our ancestors and stand in their company throughout the darkest night of the year.
Winter Solstice tidbit – From: http://www.irishclans.com/articles/celtchristmas.html
Search for the roots of today’s Christmas traditions and you will find your way back to the ancient Celtic festival of Alban Arthuan, held during the Winter Solstice on December 21. One of the principle reasons for the rapid propagation of Christianity throughout Europe during the first millennium was the willingness of Christian leaders to incorporate the rituals, beliefs and customs of other religions. Few of the ancient displaced religions were more assimilated than the Druids, Wiccans and Pagans.
Alban Arthuan is one of the ancient Druidic fire festivals. Taking place on December 21st through 22nd (due to the method the Druids used to measure one day), Alban Arthuan coincides with the Winter Solstice. Translated, it means “The Light of Arthur,” in reference to the Arthurian legend that states King Arthur was born on the Winter Solstice.
Alban Arthuan is also known as Yule, derived from the Anglo-Saxon “Yula,” or “Wheel of the Year” and marked the celebration of both the shortest day of the year and the re-birth of the sun. Alban Arthuan was also believed to be a time of increased fertility, as were many of the other Fire Festivals, such as Sam Hain and Beltane. Early Celtic calendars measured the months according to the moon’s revolution of the earth. This differed from the somewhat arbitrary Julian Calendar which relied more upon the whims of Popes than nature’s lunar and solar cycles.
The custom of burning the Yule Log, the Yule-associated tradition that is most familiar to people today, was performed to honour the Great Mother Goddess. The log would be lit on the eve of the solstice, using the remains of the log from the previous year, and would be burned for twelve hours for good luck.
Decorating the Yule tree was also originally a Pagan custom; brightly coloured decorations would be hung on the tree, usually a pine, to symbolize the various stellar objects which were of significance to the Pagans – the sun, moon, and stars – and also to represent the souls of those who had died in the previous year. The modern practice of gift giving evolved from the Pagan tradition of hanging gifts on the Yule tree as offerings to the various Pagan Gods and Goddesses.
Some of the current traditions surrounding “Father Christmas” or Santa Claus can also be traced back to Celtic roots. His “elves” are the modernisation of the “Nature folk” of the Pagan religions, and his reindeer are associated with the “Horned God” (one of the Pagan deities).
Although Christmas is a major holiday in Ireland, it is not widely celebrated in Scotland. Some historians have suggested that the reason Christmas is downplayed in Scotland is because of the influence of the Presbyterian Church or Kirk, which viewed Christmas as a “Papist”, or Catholic event. As a result, Christmas in Scotland tends to be a somber event, in direct contrast to the next Celtic festival, Hogmany, held on January 1. Hogmany is generally considered to be the much more significant celebration and it is a tradition that is beginning to spread outside of Scotland’s borders.
SBB, December, 1999