Kinda drippy and chill out there. 46F, wind at 14, AQI 34 and pretty much likely to stay that way for several days. We’re under a High Wind Warning for late this evening, too.
I kept working on newsletters yesterday during the first 4 hours we were open. At that point I woke Tempus. He was really sleeping hard! He got going pretty fast, though, and headed out with a short shopping list, too.
I got so sleepy while he was out that I dozed off and clocked myself on the bookcase a couple of times. I finally went in back and pulled out the chicken, planning on making a broth tonight. I discovered that I had small amounts of both chicken and ham, so pulled out the two smallest crockpots and started a couple of soups. One was ham/barley/caraway and it got onions later. The other was a partial chicken carcass, so it got dill and garlic.
He was back by 6pm and we had some supper, mostly of leftovers, but good stuff that needed to be eaten up. I got a nap and then we had some of the ham and barley with pickles and cheese. …and then I got back to newsletters. Urf. I was so very sleepy again. What’s up with that? So, after doing a bit, I went in back and got the chicken broth set up, then grabbed a book, my embroidery and convinced Tempus it was time to quit for the night.
Of course, I was up during the night and did a little more on newsletters and a little embroidery. I couldn’t sew because the table was occupied…. but Herbs Workshop starts in just a few minutes and then I’m hoping to sew for most of the afternoon.
Today’s plant is Red Elderberry, Sambucus racemosa. It’s a large shrub that has white flower clusters in the spring and red berry clusters late in the summer. – Planet: Venus Element: Water Deity: Hel, Holda, The White Lady Magickal properties: Exorcism, Prosperity, Banishment and Healing – The leaves and berries are used for protection and in breaking spells that were cast against you or to undo spells of evil intent. Growing an elder in your garden will protect your property from misfortune and harm. In Europe they planted elder in cemeteries to keep away the evil spirits. Elder wands can be used to drive out evil spirits or thought forms, and music on panpipes or flutes of elder have the same power as the wand. Elder should not be cut without first making a prayer, and don’t burn Elder in fear of bringing about ill-luck. “Elder is the Lady’s Tree, burn it not or cursed ye be.” More here:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sambucus_racemosa and here:http://www.thegoddesstree.com/trees/Elder.htm
Today is the Epiphanios of the goddess Kore, the night when she gives birth to Aeon, the year-god. The last paragraph of this section talks a little about this. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aion_(deity)#Identifications …and the page has more information in historical context. Here is some more information about Persephone/Kore.
The Days of Volos – Procines (January) 1-6 – These moonlit and frosty nights have a name: The Holiday of the Wolves. These days are set aside for the worship of the God of pets and of cattle, whose name is Volos. We give our thanks for the animals on these days, which bring food and sustenance to our homes from ancient times. We also defend them from the ravenous wolves which attack. (Slavic Pagan Calendar)
The shop opens at 11am. Winter hours are 11am-5pm Thursday through Monday. We’ll be closed for our annual vacation from 7-17 January. 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 1/5 at 5:28pm. 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 5:28pm on 1/5. 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 1/20 at 9:16pm. 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 5:28am on 1/7.
As we enter the very coldest time of the year, the dim Little Dipper (Ursa Minor) turns to hang straight down from Polaris after dinnertime — as if, per Leslie Peltier, from a nail on the cold north wall of the sky. The Big Dipper, meanwhile, is creeping up low in the north-northeast. Its handle is very low and its bowl is to the upper right. And Cassiopeia, a flattened letter M, is beginning to tilt nearly overhead in the north-northwest.
New Moon occurs at 8:28 p.m. EST. At its New phase, the Moon crosses the sky with the Sun and so remains hidden in our star’s glare. At least, it typically does. But if you live in the right area, you can watch the Moon pass in front of the Sun and cause a partial solar eclipse. Observers in southwestern Alaska, Japan, and eastern Asia can see the Moon partially eclipse the Sun. Maximum eclipse occurs in eastern Siberia, where our satellite covers 71 percent of the Sun’s disk. Remember that when viewing the Sun during a partial eclipse, protect your eyes by using a safe solar filter.
Venus is at greatest elongation on this date, 47° west of the Sun in the morning sky.
Old Farmer’s Almanac Sky Map for January
Goddess Month of Hestia runs from 12/26 – 1/22
Celtic Tree Month of Beth/Birch, Dec 24 – Jan 20
Runic half-month of Eihwaz/Eoh 12/28-1/11 Represents the dead, and the yew tree, sacred to Winter shamanism. Nigel Pennick, The Pagan Book of Days, Destiny Books
©2018 M. Bartlett, Some parts separately copyright
Celtic Tree Month of Beth/Birch, Dec 24 – Jan 20, Beith – (BEH), birch – The silver birch (Betula pendula Roth) is the most common tree birch in much of Europe. It grows up to 30 m (100 feet) high, but is more often found in spreading clumps on sandy soils. It is one of the first trees to colonize an area after a mature forest is cut; this is probably a large part of its symbolic connection with new beginnings. It is cultivated in North America, often under the name of weeping birch. The three trees in my front yard form root sprouts that would take over the bed where they are planted if I didn’t cut them back. The common birch (B. pubescens Ehrh.) is almost as widespread as the silver birch, but grows primarily on acid or peaty soils. It can reach 20 m (65 feet) in height. Birches are members of the Birch family (Betulaceae). Curtis Clark
Day High Tide Height Sunrise Moon Time % Moon
~ /Low Time Feet Sunset Visible
Sa 5 High 12:32 AM 6.8 7:52 AM Rise 7:33 AM 1
~ 5 Low 5:42 AM 3.4 4:51 PM Set 4:48 PM
~ 5 High 11:29 AM 8.6
~ 5 Low 6:35 PM -0.6
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – If you don’t love me by now, you never will. I am who I am.
~ He has committed the crime who profits by it. – Seneca
~ A toothache, or a violent passion, is not necessarily diminished by our knowledge of its causes, its character, its importance or insignificance.” – T. S. Eliot
~ I never forget a face, but in your case I’ll be glad to make an exception. – Groucho Marx
~ If you wish to find, you must search. Rarely does a good idea interrupt you. – Jim Rohn
Chill airs and wintry winds! my ear
Has grown familiar with your song;
I hear it in the opening year,
I listen, and it cheers me long. – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807–32)
Twelfth Night – January – Twelfth Night
A traditional song for the end of the Yule season opens:
Down with the rosemary and bay,
Down with the mistletoe.
This day is traditionally known as Twelfth Night, the last of the twelve days of Christmas. It’s time now to take down your decorations; in fact, many people believe keeping them up after this day will bring bad luck. If you still want some decoration in your living space now, generic winter fare such as plain white lights or greenery will have to do. Extra plants can keep the winter blues away and the air fresh.
Holiday lore: Twelfth Night celebrations in cultures around the world call for cake-baking. In France, the cake is called Galette des Rois (the King’s Cake); in England, the cake has lucky charms baked inside it, and in Mexico, the cake is crown-shaped. – Magenta Griffith – GrannyMoon’s Morning Feast Archives
Celebrating Candlemas in Old Ireland by Bridget Haggerty
Candlemas – February 2nd – celebrates the Presentation of Jesus in the Temple and the Purification of the Virgin Mary. As with many festivals in the liturgical calendar, this one has its origins in ancient Rome.
In Roman times, candles were carried through the streets and women observed purification rites. Even today, in many countries, women who had borne children the year before participate in candlelit processions – an activity the Church gladly welcomes as it symbolizes the purification of the Virgin Mary.
In ancient Celtic cultures, the period between February 1st and 2nd is called Imbolc – the first day of spring, midway through the dark half of the year. It was a time when the stirring of new life manifested itself in the first flow of milk in the udders of pregnant ewes – a sure sign that the lambing season was about to begin. The Church tried to replace Imbolc which was dedicated to the Goddess of Youth and Fertility – Bride. Thus, in the 5th century, February 1st became St. Brighid’s Day and February 2nd became Candlemas.
There’s a popular legend which explains why Candlemas falls immediately after St. Brighid’s Day. Mary was very nervous about bringing the infant Jesus to the crowded Temple. St. Brighid promised to help her by distracting the crowds. She did this by appearing to the multitude wearing a headdress bearing many lighted candles. In gratitude, Mary decreed that a feast day honoring St. Brighid should take place the day before Candlemas.
In Ireland, Candlemas lapsed during the time of the Penal Laws but was revived afterwards. People donated candles to their local church or took their own to be blessed. These would then be used on special occasions such as station Masses or when the holy sacraments were administered to the sick.
Weather forecasts were often made on this date. It was once believed that if the day was sunny and fair, more winter weather was to come, but if a lark was heard singing, that was a sign of an early spring. There is also a lot of folklore as well as superstitions involving candles. These are necessarily related to Candlemas and they’re not exclusive to Ireland; however, since so many candles are lit on this day, it would be prudent to know what certain signs mean.
A bright spark in the wick is sometimes said to indicate that a stranger is coming or that a letter will arrive for the person nearest to the candle. A wavering flame where there is no draft is a harbinger of windy weather. A candle that doesn’t light easily foretells rain, and in some areas, a bluish flame means frost.
It was considered very ill-omened to leave a candle burning in an empty room. The only exception is the Christmas candle which should be left to burn all through the night of Christmas Eve to light the way for the Holy Family and also to ensure light, warmth and plenty in the coming year.
To snuff out a candle by accident is a sign of a wedding; and no candle should ever be allowed to burn down to the socket of the candlestick. It should be blown out before that. Otherwise, misfortune may come to someone in the house, and in certain coastal areas, a sailor or fisherman may drown at sea.
At one time it was thought to be very unlucky to light three candles with a single taper. This superstition has survived in the avoidance of lighting three cigarettes with one match. It was also asking for misfortune to burn three candles at the same time. Apparently, Charles Stuart Parnell, the Irish nationalist leader was well-acquainted with the superstition. In his book, Life of Parnell, Barry O’Brien writes that a friend once visited Parnell when he was ill and found him lying in a bedroom illuminated by four candles. During the visit, one of the candles went out; Parnell immediately snuffed out another while remarking how unlucky it was to have three lights burning together.
Finally, in this brief look at candle lore, it is said to be very ill-omened to light a candle from the fire on the hearth. There are those who believe that if a person does this, they will become impoverished. As a measure of protection from this misfortune or any others for that matter, here is a blessing by Andrew Greeley, written expressly for the saints who celebrate their feast days in February:
May good St. Brighid keep you warn till spring
And fill your head with poetry and song
May your true heart with the help of Valentine
Love you deeply this month and all year long
May Blaise protect you from the common cold and sore throat, hacking cough and snuffy nose
May Mother Mary’s candles light your road and at the end of the day bring sweet repose
And may God, who tells the stories of His love through the saints, who love us too, bless you.
Resources: The Year in Ireland by Kevin Danaher, Irish American Blessings & Prayers by Andrew Greeley, Encyclopedia of Superstitions by Edwin & Mona Radford. http://www.irishcultureandcustoms.com/ACalend/Candlemas.html
Goddess Blessings! GrannyMoon, GoddessSchool.com
Silliness – Good Advice – Military Style – Never trade luck for skill.