We got up pretty early and headed for the event as soon as we were dressed. I sat in the merchant booth for a bit while Arlys headed off to a meeting and Tempus was trying to track down someone from Seamus’ household. Alys fed me a scone and a cup of coffee, so I had something to start the day with.
At 10 I headed for the Embellisher’s Guild meeting, then after a brief stop back at the booth I went to the area where the Challenges were occurring and was there for several hours. After that I went to Court to see Seamus’ elevation. Tempus sat booth during that whole time and after, when I stopped back near the Embellisher’s display and then just sat. My blood sugar was way low and I was worn through.
I sat booth for several hours after that as Tempus sorted out what had happened with the various bits and pieces of things that had needed to get delivered and/or picked up. By 6pm we were packed up and heading for Arlys’. We had pizza for supper, packed up there and headed home. We hadn’t intended to until Monday, but without my air purifier the dog dander at her place just overwhelmed me.
We had a good drive home, although I faded out fairly quickly, and then woke at a jerk on the wheel because Tempus was fading. We pulled over at a rest area and snoozed for an hour or so and then went on. I watched the moon set and beautiful stars all the way home, but we drove through some interesting fog in the Coast Range. We got in around 1am.
So on Sunday, we slept in. More in tomorrow’s!
Today’s plant is Wild ginger, Asarum caudatum – This is a different plant from the one usually used in magick, but has only slightly different properties. This is related to black pepper, kava and birthwort. –Masculine, Mars, Fire – This is used for “heating up” spells. While standard ginger is used in money, love, success and power spells, Wild Ginger is mostly used to add power, rather than on its own.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asarum_caudatum
Lamentations of Isis, ancient Egypt(Nov 13 – 14) –Today: ‘Dismemberment of Osiris’. Isis and Osiris are archetypes bearing a similarity to other divine dualities such as Ishtar and Tammuz ( Damuzi), Venus and Adonis, Mary and Jesus Christ. The tears of Isis, as she lamented Osiris, were said to cause the periodic rising of the Nile; June 18 is another such event, The Egyptian story is believed to have influenced Christianity. See also the Festival of Isia, October 28. Related bits here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Djed and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nephthys
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
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. Waxing Crescent phase – Keywords for the Crescent phase are: expansion, growth, struggle, opportunity. It is the time in a cycle that you gather the wisdom learned in the new phase and communicate your intention to move forward. Light a candle. Write or read an affirmation. LISTEN & ABSORB. Commit to your goal. God/dess aspect: Maiden/Youth, energy and enthusiasm – Associated God/dess: Artemis & Apollo, Mayet/Djehuti, Freya/Frey. Phase ends at the Quarter on 1/13 at 10:46pm. 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 1/19 at 9:16am.
You can find the First Quarter Moon high in the south as darkness falls tonight, then watch as it sinks toward the western horizon throughout the evening hours. Although our satellite doesn’t officially reach First Quarter phase until 1:46 a.m. EST tomorrow morning, you’ll be hard-pressed to see it as less than half-lit this evening. The Moon lies along the border between Pisces and Cetus.
The Winter Triangle shines in the southeast as darkness falls. This triplet of stars is an example of an asterism — a recognizable star pattern that’s not one of the official constellations. The most famous asterism is the Big Dipper, seven bright stars within the constellation Ursa Major the Great Bear. But asterisms also can incorporate stars from different constellations. The Winter Triangle, for example, uses the brightest stars from three of this season’s heavenly figures. The brightest of the three luminaries — and, indeed, the brightest of all the nighttime stars — is Sirius, which marks the head (or perhaps a jewel on the collar) of Canis Major the Great Dog. To Sirius’ upper left is Procyon, the sky’s eighth-brightest star and number one in Canis Minor the Small Dog. And at the westernmost tip of the Winter Triangle lies copper-hued Betelgeuse, the sky’s 10th-brightest star and the one marking the right shoulder of Orion the Hunter.
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 Perdhro/ Peorth, 1/12-1/27. – Feast of Brewing, Druidic,Source: The Phoenix and Arabeth 1992 Calendar.
©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
Su 13 High 5:25 AM 7.1 7:50 AM Rise 11:50 AM 35
~ 13 Low 11:48 AM 2.9 5:00 PM
~ 13 High 5:15 PM 5.7
~ 13 Low 11:25 PM 2.0
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – Lifestyle is the art of discovering ways to live uniquely.
~ Young Wilde has opened his eyes, “Why,” he said, “the United States is not a country, it is a world!” – The Ohio State Journal, February 18, 1882. On January 18, 1882, Wilde visited American poet Walt Whitman.
~ A ‘children’s book’ must be written, not for children, but for the author himself. – AA Milne
~ That’s another fine mess you’ve gotten us into, Stanley. – Oliver Hardy, American comedian, born on January 18, 1892
~ He’s wound up like a thousand-day clock. – Paul Keating on John Howard
Keep warm by inner fires, and rest in peace.
Sleep on content, as sleeps the patient rose.
Walk boldly on the white untrodden snows,
The winter is the winter’s own release. – Helen Hunt Jackson (1830–85)
Imbolc Magick – Lore – Midwinter Feast of Light: Reviving the Magical Foods of Imbolc – JANUARY 20, 2016 / DANIELLE PROHOM OLSON – http://gathervictoria.com/2016/01/20/midwinter-feast-of-light-reviving-the-magical-foods-of-imbolc/
I love the ancient feast days of the pagan calendar. Celebrating the turn of the “great wheel of the year” through the solstices, equinoxes and cross quarter days, these “holy days” are the origin of most of our modern holidays. And no matter what ancestral culture you descend from, it’s a pretty safe bet that most of your beloved holiday foods were once “holy foods”, ritually prepared and consumed to bring fertility, good harvest and prosperity to the land.
Which is why Jennifer and I are once again busy in the kitchen. We’re preparing to celebrate one the oldest and most magical holy days of the ancient calendar- the upcoming Midwinter Festival of Light. Falling at the midpoint between winter solstice and spring equinox, it can be dated as far back as the Neolithic when megalithic chambers marked the light of the rising sun on this day.
Celebrated across Ireland, Britain and Scotland and Old Europe, it was known to the Celts as Imbolc, who welcomed the onset of spring in the form of their goddess Brigid (Brigit, Brighid, Bride, Bridget, Bridgit, Bríd) who was known as the maiden of the sun. She revived the landscape from its winter slumber so that the agricultural year could begin. And in a time when winter cupboards began to run thin, the first appearance of her swelling buds and green shoots, were a promise of the return of the season of plenty.
I’m fascinated that Brigid is one of the few goddesses whose worship survived the onset of Christianity (although she was absorbed as St. Brigid and the religious festival of Candlemas). Many of her rites and food rituals are still observed today. This is likely due to the fact that the long arm of the invading Romans never managed to colonize Ireland.
All forms of light, heat and illumination were sacred to Brigid so it’s no wonder that Imbolc was marked with bonfires, blazing hearths, lit candles and a feast of sacred foods symbolizing the power of the sun. This was a high time for magic, for ritually burning off and releasing the old year and nourishing the new.
Today we might say these ancient people were practicing a kind of “sympathetic magic”, the belief that through intention, in harmony with the seasonal powers of nature, they could create an energy of blessing for themselves, their families and their community. And their ceremonial rituals of preparing and offering food were no exception.
This was a time when the ewes began to birth, lactating the “new milk” or “Oilmec” which was sacred to the Celts. During Imbolc it was customary to offer this milk to Brigid by pouring it onto the earth to assist the return of fertility to the land. And it was also made into special cheese and baked into breads, cakes, and pies, along with other magical ingredients associated with the sun (such as egg yolks and honey) for the Imbolc feast.
Another centrepiece of Imbolc food was butter because (according to thiswonderful compendium of Imbolc folklore and history) the churning of butter with a dash (a staff or plunger) was necessary for the fertilization of the brídeóg (a doll or effigy of Brigid) so central to Imbolc fertility customs. (See more on the Bridey Doll here
Another important food ritual was the making of the Bonnach Bride or Bannock of Bride (an oatcake made with fruits and nuts). On the eve of St Brìde’s day it was customary for mothers to give out gifts of bannocks, along with cheese or butter to the girls who visited each house with the Brìde’s doll. The Bonnach Bride was also eaten in the fields so that a piece could be thrown over the shoulder to honour Brigid and nourish the land.
Pancakes were eaten because, round and golden, they resembled the sun. This promised an abundant harvest of wheat and saving the last pancake in the cupboard ensured there would be enough flour to last out the year. Wishes were made while flipping a pancake in the air and trinkets were also placed into pancake batter as a way to divine one’s future prospects for the forthcoming year.
Brigid was believed to be a teacher of ‘herbcraft” and so many plants and flowers sacred to her, such as sage, heather, violets, rosemary and blackberry were often featured in Imbolc foods. Each came with their own magical purpose, rosemary and sage for example, brought their powers of purification and cleansing, so ritually important at this time of new beginnings.
These are only a few of the foods and culinary traditions of Imbolc passed down to us through folklore – ones that we’ll be reviving once again at our own Midwinter celebration. As per tradition, we’ll craft Brigid crosses or sun wheels (which are hung on the door to invite Brigid’s blessings into our home) weave floral fertility crowns, and light an altar of burning candles in her honour.
Then we’ll be serving up some Imbolc magic in dishes like sheep cheese, braided breads, herb and honey butters, and creamy tarts and savoury pies. There might even be a pancake “cake”so that we can enjoy a little old fashioned divination!
We’ll also add a touch of the wild by featuring the new fresh greens and herbs that appear in early spring. Wild garlic has been used as an herb with fish and to flavour soups, stews, potato dishes and in salads since the days of the Celts. Similarly wild mustards and winter cress was consumed in the UK in spring pottages and stews. And of course dandelion greens (a plant sacred to Brigid) have been eaten since ancient times.
So please join us as we celebrate some old world food magic at the Midwinter Feast of Lights. We’ll raise a toast to the bride of new beginnings and partake in some of the magical foods of spring. We hope you can make it – and if not click here, for a little inspiration for your own feast and celebration. And for those interested in attending our Imbolc event, tickets can be purchased here. Happy Imbolc!