The wind picked up during the night, hitting the 30’s, at one point. It’s kinda grey and a bit gloomy and it’s been raining, almost 1/3 of an inch so far. 53F, wind at 9, gusting into the 20’s, AQI 13. Tomorrow’s daylight is going to be only 4 seconds shorter than today. Almost Yule! We’re under a STORM WARNING and HIGH WIND WARNING, but only until 1pm. After that it should gradually clear and dry for a couple of days and then start back in with rain on Saturday.
Yesterday was all just chores from laundry and cleaning to computer house-keeping. There were only a few things other than that which happened. Tempus finally succeeded in setting up the other air purifier in the back of the shop, we had a wonderful supper that he made of home fries, chicken and brussels sprouts, and we got a long chance to talk with Amor late in the evening.
Today we’re back to our normal schedule. I still have some cookery to do, finished up Christmas stuff and more herbs to write up. Tempus is going to work in the library for awhile, then do some more cleaning in back. Of course, tonight is the paper run.
Today’s Plant is Gillyflower, Clove Pink, Carnation, all names that are used for, Dianthus caryophyllus. This plant has been hybridized to the point where the basic flower and the florist’s varieties (which are all that show up in the article….) don’t look a bit alike, although they keep the scent. These also make a yummy tea. Even a single flower in a cup of green tea is enough! There is a lot of symbolism to the flower, depending on which culture you’re in, although they generally are thought to mean love, fascination, and distinction. They were used particularly in crowns of victory in ancient Europe. – Masculine, Sun, Fire, Jupiter – All-purpose protection, in healing for strength and energy (so perfect for hospital bouquets!) and for healing of broken hearts, add red, rather than pink blossoms. White are occasionally used for the protection of children or those who travel. Dried petals make a great addition to sachets, potpourris or incense since they strengthen the properties of other plants and herbs.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dianthus_caryophyllus
Mōdraniht, Modresnacht, Mother’s Night is a very old festival that apparently celebrated several goddesses, the Matres or Matrones. This is one of those did-they-didn’t-they feasts that you find in a lot of the modern pagan calendar books, but we aren’t really sure *what* was done, only that something was. What’s in the books is interpretation. It’s possible that this connects to Berchta/Frau Holde/La Befana who are all gifting goddesses. It’s equally possible that this was simply an event where women did the sacrifices or even some other kind of topsy-turvy bit. No one is really sure. Here’s some info: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M%C5%8Ddraniht A similar event is talked about here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/D%C3%ADsabl%C3%B3t
The shop opens at 11am. Winter hours are 11am-5pm Thursday through Monday. Open Circle for Yule 12/21, 7pm. Holiday Hours – Open Late on 12/22 & 24 (Christmas Eve), Closed Christmas Day 12/25, Closed Saturday 12/29, Closing Early for New Year’s on 12/31 (probably by 4pm), And then we’ll be closed again on New Year’s Day! 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 12/22 at 9:49pm. 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. Keywords for the Gibbous phase are: analyze, prepare, trust. It is the time in a cycle to process the results of the actions taken during the First Quarter. During this phase you are gathering information. Give up making judgments; it will only lead to worry. Your knowledge is incomplete. Laugh. Analyze and filter. LOOK WITHIN. God/dess aspect: Maiden/Youth, but in the uncommitted phase, the Warriors – Associated God/desses: Dion, Dionysius, Venus, Thor. Phase ends at the Full on 12/21 at 9:49am.
The nearly Full Moon passes through the background stars of the Hyades star cluster tonight, near Aldebaran and below the Pleiades. Use binoculars to best see the V-shaped star group frame Earth’s only natural satellite. The conjunction affords a good opportunity to witness the Moon’s motion. Early this evening, Luna sits just west of the Hyades, but by time they sink low in the west tomorrow morning, the Moon has pulled east of the cluster. As you gaze at our satellite tonight, take a minute to remember that today is the 50th anniversary of Apollo 8 leaving Earth on humanity’s historic first voyage to the Moon.
Venus will occult a 6th-magnitude star before or during dawn tomorrow morning the 21st for much of central and eastern North America. Venus will be a thick crescent, 41% sunlit; the star is about 10,000 times fainter. “Only the dark-side reappearance can be seen, but it can be observed well, with any telescope with high power, since the dazzling sunlit parts of Venus will be at least 15 arcseconds away,” writes David Dunham of the International Occultation Timing Association. Amateurs with large scopes who can do rapid imaging or video recording may be able to document brightenings and fadings of the star as its light is refracted by layers of Venus’s atmosphere. You might even record the brief, globe-encircling central flash exactly at mid-occultation on the centerline. But if you’re too far east the sky will be too bright, and too far west Venus will be too low. Maps, local timetables, and observing details and tips.
You are remembered, Carl Sagan (November 9, 1934 – December 20, 1996).
Uranus, near the Aries-Pisces border, is pretty easy to see in binoculars at magnitude 5.7 — with a good finder chart, if you know the constellations well enough to see where to start with the chart.
Old Farmer’s Almanac Sky Map for December
Goddess Month of Astrea runs from 11/28 – 12/25
Goddess Month of Hestia runs from 12/26 – 1/22
Celtic Tree Month of Ruis Elder Nov 25 – Dec 22 – (RWEESH)
Celtic Tree Month of Secret of the Unhewn Stone, Dec 23
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
©2018 M. Bartlett, Some parts separately copyright
Celtic tree month of Ruis/Elder, Nov 25 – Dec 22 – Ruis – (RWEESH) – 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).
Ruis – Elder Ogam letter correspondences
Month: Makeup days of the thirteenth Moon
Meaning: End of a cycle or problem.
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).
Day High Tide Height Sunrise Moon Time % Moon
~ /Low Time Feet Sunset Visible
Th 20 Low 3:54 AM 2.8 7:49 AM Set 5:15 AM 88
~ 20 High 9:59 AM 8.8 4:39 PM Rise 3:25 PM
~ 20 Low 5:03 PM -0.4
~ 20 High 11:25 PM 6.7
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – Liberty….is the sun of our life….
~ The trouble with letting sleeping dogs lie is that after a while the room fills up with dogs. Eventually you end up tripping over one of them and fall flat on your face. – Kerr Cuhulain
~ At the beach, life is different. Time doesn’t move hour to hour but mood to moment. We live by the currents, plan by the tides, and follow the sun. – Anonymous
~ Protect me from knowing what I don’t need to know. Protect me from even knowing that there are things to know that I don’t know. Protect me from knowing that I decided not to know about the things that I decided not to know about. Amen. – Douglas Adams in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy
~ Gold medals don’t make champions . . . hard work does. – Unknown
The holly’s up, the house is all bright,
The tree is ready, the candles alight:
Rejoice and be glad, all children tonight!
The mother sings of our Lord’s good grace
Whereby the Child who saved our race
Was born and adored in a lowly place,
Once more the shepherds, as she sings,
Bend low, and angels touch their strings:
With “Glory” they hail the King of kings.
The children listening round the tree
Can hear the heavenly minstrelsy,
The manger’s marvel they can see,
Let every house be ready tonight —
The children gathered, the candles alight —
That music to hear, to see that sight. – Words: Carl August Peter Cornelius, Translated by H. N. Bate, Source: Anne Thaxter Eaton, ed., Welcome Christmas! A Garland Of Poems. New York: The Viking Press, 1955.
A Memory Ritual – I took a few minutes with a lighted candle or so to watch the fading of the light at sunset, to remember how dreadful that must have been to our distant ancestors who had only experience to say that the Sun would return. I thought about my Babicka who watched the sun set every day that she could each year at this time and would shake her head and come in and bake up a storm to “tempt the Sun back”. I thought about my Dedi, who was my first teacher, who often would set up something special on Solstice Night for us… often stories and his special eggs and mushrooms midnight snack and then he would make pancakes at sunrise. Now, I understand it as a special offering, but as a kid it was just something that he did and my mother would fuss about his keeping us awake, but allowed it. – Anja Yule 2003
Five-Minute Winter Solstice Meditation by Stuart Wilde
The First Liberation is to make peace with the world. You can use the night of the winter solstice, December 21st. It is the most powerful day of the year. At midnight go outside or stand on a balcony and face north. Take an ice cube with you in your left hand. And place your right hand on your heart and take three deep breaths and relax.
Then in your mind’s eye, bring up anyone that you hold rancor or resentment toward – people that have ripped you off or treated you badly. Bring the first one in your mind’s eye and breath them in eleven times and as you breath out send them love and wish them well in life, release them from your energy. Then bring up the next one and so forth until you are done.
Then finally when you are finished, take eleven very special breaths for yourself; forgive yourself for any shortcomings and vow to become a better person in this next year.
The ice cube is there to remind you of the freezing cold ambience of hell. And as it melts in your hand it also reminds you how energy draining are anger, resentment and conflict. – Goddess Bless! GrannyMoon
In the darkness
The light is born anew.
In the silence
The call is heard aloud.
Let new life waken
Let dry husks crumble.
The end and the beginning are one.
Deepest night nourishes the seed of life
Waiting in the womb.
Patience breathes the rhythm that brings life.
Time stands still at the beginning
Poised, waiting for the moment’s first sigh.
We stand on the threshold of now
The past behind, the future before.
We are awake, yet dreaming
Hovering in the moment’s birth.
Let us be still and know
The treasure lies within our grasp
As long as we do not grasp it,
Ours, as long as we do not claim it.
As we are present in the precious moment
So we become the peace we seek.
Between sleeping and waking
We call out our dream
And the seed grows to become all that we are. – Blessed Be, © Tasha Halpert
A little boy returned from Sunday School with a new perspective on the Christmas story. He had learned all about the Wise Men from the East who brought gifts to the Baby Jesus.
He was so excited he just had to tell his parents: “I learned in Sunday School today all about the very first Christmas! There wasn’t a Santa Claus way back then, so these three skinny guys on camels had to deliver all the toys!” And Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer with his nose so bright wasn’t there yet, so they had to have this big spotlight in the sky to find their way around.”