All distances are obscured and it’s grey and drippy, although there’s a bright streak over the Coast Range, as though the Valley isn’t getting as much. It’s 43F with the wind at 2mph and not much higher even on the beaches. We’ve gotten 1/10 of an inch of rain, at the least, and although it may not be so damp this afternoon tomorrow looks rainy. …and then Wednesday on…. some kind of weather system is moving in because the barometer is tanking early Thursday, the temp going down to 38F and then thunderstorms on Friday? Wow….
I was miserable all day yesterday. Not sure what they hey, but I really just felt horrid. Tempus got the errands run and then we sorted out some bank stuff. Class got called off because I was in such bad shape. Eventually I ran out of the few spoons that I had and said, “I think my spoons turned into forks and waddled away on the tines”.
We pretty much collapsed when we got home. Tempus went right to sleep, but my asthma kept me up awhile. It seemed to rain all night and there was standing water on the path. I wanted to do some harvesting this morning, but discretion being the better part of valor I decided I’d better not chance the slippery ground.
Today I’m hoping to actually do some cooking again. We’ve got a corned beef and some cabbage to use up and I still have lentils to make, since we’ve eaten the pea soup. I have the stuff for tvarog, too.
The shop is open and we’ve got the heat on so it’ll be nice and warm on a damp and chilly day!
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 3/17 at 6:12am. Dark of the Moon, End of the cycle – In the time leading up to the “New Moon” you may do banishings and other baneful magicks and healings that require blasting a disease away, as well as using the time for introspection and self-work. Do scrying, now. Good for reversing circumstances. God/dess Aspect: The One Beyond, the Watchers in the Outer Dark, psychopomps – Associated God/desses: Hecate, Kali, Arianhrod, Anja, Kore in the Underworld, Ereshkigal who was Inanna, Set/Seth, Hades, Osiris. Phase ends at 6:12am on 3/17. 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 3/31 at 5:37am. New Moon – The beginning of a new cycle. Keywords for the New phase are: beginning, birth, emergence, projection, clarity. It is the time in a cycle that you are stimulated to take a new action. During this phase the new cycle is being seeded by your vision, inner and outer. Engage in physical activity. Spend time alone. VISUALIZE your goals for the 29.6-day cycle ahead. The new moon is for starting new ventures, new beginnings. Also love and romance, health or job hunting. God/dess aspect: Infancy, the Cosmic Egg, Eyes-Wide-Open – Associated God/dess: Inanna who was Ereshkigal. Phase ends at 6:12pm on 3/18.
On Sunday evening the 18th, catch the short viewing window for the Moon-Venus-Mercury lineup after twilight dims and before they set.
As the turn of spring approaches (spring begins on March 20th this year), watch the low east-northeast for the rise of the “Spring Star,” Arcturus. Find the Big Dipper high in the northeast and follow the curve of its handle around down, by a little more than a Dipper-length, to see where Arcturus will be.
New Moon (exact at 9:12 a.m. EDT).
Mercury (fading from magnitude –1 to 0 this week) and Venus (much brighter at mag. –4) glow low in evening twilight due west. Look for Mercury to Venus’s upper right. All week they remain only about 4° apart.
Mars and Saturn, together in Sagittarius >>> , rise around 3 a.m. daylight-saving time. At the beginning of dawn they’re the brightest points moderately low in the south-southeast, above the fainter Sagittarius Teapot. They’re equally bright at magnitude +0.5, but Mars is redder. Far to their right at that time is Antares, and farther right is bright Jupiter. Mars continues drawing closer to Saturn as seen from Earth’s moving point of view. They appear 8½° apart on the morning of March 17th and 5° apart by the 24th. They’ll pass each other by 1.3° on April 2nd.
Old Farmer’s Almanac Sky Map for March 2018 – https://www.almanac.com/sites/default/files/skymap_march2018.pdf
Goddess Month of Moura, runs from 2/20-3/19
Goddess Month of Columbina runs from 3/20 – 4/17
Celtic Tree Month of Nuin/Nion/Ash, Feb 18 – Mar 17
Celtic Tree Month of Fearn/Alder, Mar 18 – Apr 14.
Runic half-month of Berkana/ Beorc, 3/14-29 Half-month ruled by the goddess of the birch tree; a time of purification for rebirth and new beginnings.
©2018 M. Bartlett, Some parts separately copyright
Celtic Tree Month of Nuin/Nion/Ash, Feb 18 – Mar 17, Nion (NEE-uhn), ash – the common ash (Fraxinus excelsior L.) is a major tree of lowland forests in much of Europe, along with oaks and beeches. It grows to 40 m (130 feet) in open sites, with a broad crown reminiscent of American elm trees. Ash was and still is an important timber tree, and is a traditional material for the handle of a besom. The common ash is occasionally cultivated in North America, and similar native ash species are widely grown as street trees. Ashes are members of the Olive family (Oleaceae).
Ogam letter correspondences to study this month Oir – Spindle Ogam letter correspondences
Letter: TH, OI
Meaning: Finish obligations and tasks or your life cannot move forward.
Celtic Tree Month of Fearn/Alder, Mar 18 – Apr 14. Fern (FAIR-n) Alder – 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).
Tides for Alsea Bay
Day High Tide Height Sunrise Moon Time % Moon
~ /Low Time Feet Sunset Visible
Sa 17 High 1:27 AM 7.3 7:24 AM Rise 7:50 AM 0
~ 17 Low 7:27 AM 1.3 7:25 PM Set 7:48 PM
~ 17 High 1:21 PM 7.7
~ 17 Low 7:46 PM 0.3
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – Make this a graceful day!
~ Keep your eyes on the stars, and your feet on the ground. Theodore Roosevelt
~ None but the well-bred man knows how to confess a fault, or acknowledge himself in an error. – –Benjamin Franklin (1706–90)
~ Keep your face to the sunshine and you cannot see the shadows. – Helen Keller
~ Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever. – Mahatma Gandhi
On St. Patrick’s Day, the warm side of a stone turns up,
and the broad-back goose begins to lay. – proverb
Ostara or Spring Equinox Our Lady of the Woods – http://www.ladywoods.org/ostara.htm by Merlyn – An earlier version of this article appeared in Lady Letter, volume 1. no. 5. –
This page was downloaded from www.ladywoods.org, the website of the coven of Our Lady of the Woods. It may be used for personal and educational purposes with credit to the author.
You don’t have to be a Wiccan or even a Pagan to celebrate spring’s arrival. The Ostara sabbat, also called Eostar or Eostre, is a minor sabbat that affects us emotionally because it occurs at a time clearly separating winter and spring. Two weeks before the Spring Equinox, deep snowfalls can linger for days. After Ostara the fading winter yields to a six week rush of time through spring into May when long days and summer temperatures appear. Returning sunlight, increasing in both intensity and duration, irreversibly fuels spring’s warming. However, in many climates the cautious buds of fruit trees and flowering ornamentals won’t blossom and spread their sensuous perfumes until mid-April, because hard freezes still threaten them on clear nights.
Traditional Spring Rites
Ostara is a Saxon goddess, also named Eostar and Eostre, and is a Northern version of the ancient Middle Eastern goddess Astarte, who ruled over creation and destruction. Her Sabbat celebrates fertility in a general sense–the greening of vegetation and the swelling of buds and bellies of animals impregnated during fall or winter. Bunnies, coyotes, cats, dogs, and sheep have breeding seasons timed so that their gestations are completed and the young are born just before or during spring’s arrival.
Ostara and Mabon are the balancing points occurring at the equinoxes when light and dark periods are equal, and so are female and male energies. At Ostara, Kore (Persephone) returns from the underworld and reunites with her mother Demeter after a four-month absence.
To see how pre-Christian Ostara was celebrated, look at the modern Easter celebration. Easter bunnies, eggs, and dressing up in bright festive colors were originally Ostara traditions. The name Easter comes from the goddess name Eostre. The hare was an animal sacred to the Moon Goddess, another form of the Triple Goddess Eostre whose sacred fertile month began at the equinox. Eggs colored red symbolized fertility. Even the Easter theme of resurrection was borrowed from the pagan tradition of deities sacrificing themselves for the benefit of their people and later returning via resurrection. Odin’s hanging on the World Ash Tree for nine days and Kore’s annual underworld sojourn represented sacrifices followed by resurrections.
Ostara colors are green and silver. It is a time to bless your seeds before planting them, dye eggs bright colors in honor of spring’s fertility and give thanks for the fertility carried in your genitals. Initiate new projects that will not be completed until the fall harvest. Decorate your home with spring flowers, or the leguminous herbs of clover and trefoil, which are traditional Ostara symbols. Don’t forget to include the bunnies in your celebrations, as the goddess likes them and the chocolate ones taste good, too.
Our Lady of the Woods, and before it the Los Alamos CUUPS chapter, began a tradition of celebrating Ostara with an outdoors ritual held at dawn. A reasonable question to ask is whether there is any value in holding a dawn Ostara ritual year after year? For a few of us, 6 a.m. is a normal hour to be up, getting breakfast, or starting the day’s activities. For many others this time is a period for deep sleep.
Our ancestors who lived before the late 19th century inhabited a world largely dependent on the sun for providing most of its light. Thomas Edison’s electric light bulb changed that. Before its invention in 1876, candles, torches and oil lamps provided only dim and unsteady light that was adequate for avoiding obstacles, such as stools and children’s toys, and for reading at night.
Today our powerful electric lights rival the sun with their ability to flood large areas with near daylight intensities. Modern activities such as nighttime baseball games would be unthinkable without powerful electric lights. So, too, would be stores open 24 hours a day and the miles of well lit corridors at indoor shopping malls.
Should we forget how dependent our ancestors were on the daily and seasonal solar cycles? I feel that you should increase your awareness of the subtle influences on your moods brought about by the ever changing solar and lunar cycles. Ostara is one day a year when performing an outdoor dawn ritual can connect you with the hundreds of preceding generations of Pagans who anxiously awaited spring’s liberation from winter’s dark and cold.
For ancient Celts and other northern peoples, Ostara was a time for the joyous resumption of warm season activities. In our modern world, spring is still a time of physical and psychological reawakening. How we celebrate it is a matter of personal taste, but few of us are left unaffected by nature’s increasing day length, dramatic warming, and the reawakening of dormant buds, animals, and human desires.
Besides the series of short articles included here, we recommend:
1. Campenelli, Pauline and Dan. Wheel of the Year: Living the Magical Life. Llewellyn, 1993.
2. Hutton, Ronald. The Stations of the Sun. Oxford University Press, 1996.
3. Nahmad, Claire. Earth Magic: A Wisewoman’s Guide to Herbal, Astrological, & Other Folk Wisdom. Destiny Books, 1994.
4. Pennick, Nigel. The Pagan Book of Days. Destiny Books, 1992.