Rain. It’s pouring outside at the moment, hard enough that I can hear it through the roof. There’s a daffodil waving wildly in front of the window, too. The map is entirely green over us and when I back it out to see the state, it’s really heavy from us north and snow/ice in the Cascades. Here, it’s warm. 50F, wind at 5mph and gusting to 8, AQI46, UV3. 60% chance of rain today….well, that got fooled, didn’t it? 🙂 100% tonight. Fun weather for tossing Sunday papers! This should taper off to showers by Tuesday and Thursday and Friday could be dry.
Yesterday I got to do classes in heraldry, Bayeaux tapestry stitch, pad stitching, thrown pottery and attend a stitcher’s salon where one of the things was talking about embroidery books.
I’m finding Zoom disappointing. It seems to be horribly glitchy and most people don’t really get how to use it, especially the chat window feature. Too many people hop in with full video and sound, which makes everything break up. Most of the people running the sessions don’t let the screen break up into separate window for each person, so you get to see a lot of one person chewing gum. Most of them also ignore the chat window comments which is quite frustrating.
I got a long nap in the afternoon while Tempus was working in back. Sash called in the evening and he and Tempus talked for a long while discussing work, the virus and marble runs. After they were done, I talked with him for a bit until my allergies kicked in and I started coughing. …and coughing and coughing. Oi. Asthma can be a bit much!
I spent a little while in the evening finding fun flashmob vids. I needed some cheering up. I came out of an 1/2 hour of them with a smile. I got the archway curtains finished, finally and Tempus helped me hang them before he headed out. I also got the shelf unit curtains hung. After that I got going on some small sewing. I wanted to cut masks, but my mat was gone again. I spent a while cleaning up by my rolling drawers. I pulled out the box that was in the way and discovered where the rest of the pie plates had gone. <sigh> So I swept and moved stuff and by then I was ready to go splat. I got this ready to go, instead, so I wouldn’t be late today. I’m really sorry about yesterday, still not sure what happened….
Today is all more of the same although Tempus is talking about fetching some book boxes. I’d rather get more stuff put away, first.
Today’s Plant is Bleeding Heart, lamprocapnos spectabilis (which Cunningham has as dicentra spectabilis, an older designation). Other names are: old-fashioned bleeding-heart, Venus’s car, Lady in a bath, Dutchman’s trousers, or Lyre-flower, which all have various folklore attached.
They’re native to Asia, but are common garden ornamentals and so suited to our climate that I assumed that they were native here! You see them all through the woods at this time of year. – Feminine, Venus, Water – Used in magick mostly as a divination. Crush the flower. If it “bleeds red” there is love. If it “bleeds white”, either love has died, or there is no hope of it. Be careful if you bring the live plant indoors because it can produce irritation and anger between people in the household. To forestall this push a silver bead or a dime (standing in for silver) into the soil, and say, “Lady of the Moon, give us peace, in your honor, and we honor you!”http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lamprocapnos_spectabilis
If she (Ishtar) will not grant thee her release,
To Tammuz, the lover of her youth,
Pour out pure waters, pour out fine oil;
With a festival garment deck him that he may play on the flute of lapis lazuli,
That the votaries may cheer his liver. [his spirit]
Belili [sister of Tammuz] had gathered the treasure,
With precious stones filled her bosom.
When Belili heard the lament of her brother, she dropped her treasure,
She scattered the precious stones before her,
“Oh, my only brother, do not let me perish!
On the day when Tammuz plays for me on the flute of lapis lazuli, playing it for me with the porphyry ring.
Together with him, play ye for me, ye weepers and lamenting women!
That the dead may rise up and inhale the incense.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ishtar
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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 4/7 at 7:35pm. 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 4/1 at 3:21am.
The Moon this evening shines a few degrees above Aldebaran and the Hyades. Lower right of the Moon shines brilliant Venus with the Pleiades glimmering close above. Off to the Moon’s left is Orion.
Curious comet hunters may want to try finding C/2019 Y4 (ATLAS), which is brightening dramatically as it speeds closer to the Sun. Still months from rounding our star at perihelion, the comet is currently at magnitude 8 and located in Ursa Major, about 63° north of Venus. The bright star Capella lies roughly halfway between the two, forming the point of a long, low triangle connecting the three.
Eighth-magnitude Vesta slips past the crescent Moon this morning in Taurus the Bull. At 3 A.M., the two are separated by just 0.2°, but below the horizon. By sunset, the two are much farther apart — 8° — and Vesta now hangs about halfway between the Moon and Venus in the west, just 7° southeast of the Pleiades (M45). East of the asteroid is the familiar v shape of the Hyades Cluster as well as ruddy, bright Aldebaran, the eye of Taurus.
Venus (magnitude –4.5, in western Taurus under the Pleiades) is the big, bright white “Evening Star” blazing high in the west during and after dusk. Venus doesn’t set (in the west-northwest) until a good 2½ hours after complete dark. Above Venus are the Pleiades, drawing closer to Venus by about 1° per day. On Friday evening April 3rd, Venus is right in the Pleiades’ left edge! In a telescope, Venus is a trace less than half lit and 25 arcseconds in diameter. It will continue to enlarge in size and wane in phase and will become a dramatically thin crescent in late May.
Old Farmer’s Almanac March Sky Map!
Goddess Month of Columbina runs from 3/20 – 4/17
Celtic Tree Month of Fearn (FAIR-n) /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. Runic half-month of Ehwaz, 3/30-4/13 – Ehwaz, the horse; time of partnership between humans and Nature, as between rider and horse. Nigel Pennick, The Pagan Book of Days, Destiny Books, Rochester, Vermont, USA, 1992, p. 55
©2020 M. Bartlett, Some parts separately copyright
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).
Day High Tide Height Sunrise Moon Time % Moon
~ /Low Time Feet Sunset Visible
Su 29 High 3:46 AM 7.3 7:01 AM Set 12:07 AM 16
~ 29 Low 10:42 AM 0.7 7:41 PM Rise 9:50 AM
~ 29 High 5:02 PM 5.9
~ 29 Low 10:21 PM 3.0
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – I act with balance in my heart. I speak with balance on my lips. I walk with balance in my feet.
~ I follow the religion of Love; whatever way Love’s camels take, that is my religion and my faith. – Ibn al-‘Arabi
~ I believe in the sun even when it is not shining. I believe in love even when I do not feel it. I believe in God even when He is silent. -Scrawled on a wall where Jews had hidden in WW II
~ Fortune is the word used by those who work the plan, while luck is the word used by those planning to work. – K C Anton
~ The core value that motivates a true revolution is love; love for peace, justice, freedom and higher values, love for humanity, and the love for the well-being of all existence. When forces threaten this well-being, the lover is motivated to act in the interest of the beloved. – Roozbeh Bahramali
Patience is wider than one once envisioned,
with ribbons of rivers and distant ranges
and tasks undertaken and finished
with modest relish by natives in their
native dress. – Kay Ryan (1945–)
Magick – The Secret Language of Hands in Indian Iconography – Unlock the meaning of these ancient gestures By Andy McCord; Illustrations by Richard Johnson – SMITHSONIAN JOURNEYS QUARTERLY – FEBRUARY 17, 2016 12:20PM – http://www.smithsonianmag.com/travel/india-hand-gestures-mudra-180958089/
There is no one key to unlocking the mysteries of India, a nation at once so traditional and so dynamic, so anarchic and so arresting. But mudra, the gestural vocabulary used in imagery, dance, and yoga, can help. With root meanings in a verb that can signify cleansing and purification as well as satisfaction and delight, mudra is used in Indian rhetoric to denote “the expression of things by their right names.” More concretely, a mudra is a seal or an emblem. As a system of hand gestures, it can sum up a god’s or goddess’s character—or a dancer’s mood—in a moment of concentrated symbolism and meaning.
What follow are illustrations of some of the most common mudras used in Indian iconography, whether Hindu, Buddhist, or Jain. Understanding these symbols can enable a visitor to make sense of who’s who in a prolifically carved Hindu temple, or give an indication of the message conveyed in a brightly printed calendar hanging behind a shopkeeper’s counter. The attentive visitor may even see reflections of these ancient gestures in the everyday bearing of ordinary people, whether the truck driver, the waiter, or the temple priest.
“Consciousness or Deliberation Mudra” – Richard Johnson)
Known as Chin or Vitarka Mudra. This touch of the thumb and forefinger evokes mind and mindfulness. A yogi will assume this gesture—accompanied by outstretched arms and upturned palms resting on knees—while meditating in the lotus position. Or the dreadlocked god Shiva, with a crooked elbow and a vertical palm, might use this while explaining yoga to his consort Parvati.
Known as Abhaya Mudra. A gesture familiar from statues of the Buddha, it’s also used by the fearsome Hindu goddess Durga as she looks out at you while riding a tiger. It’s commonly employed as well in modern daily life—to calm a crowd, or an impatient traveler.
Known as Namaskara Mudra. Probably the most familiar gesture in all of Indian physical culture. This can be a deeply felt sign of reverence or simply a polite form of greeting.
Known as Bhumisparsha Mudra. Another signature gesture of the meditating Buddha. He is said to have touched the soil like this at the moment he simultaneously attained enlightenment and came back to Earth. Shiva, Hinduism’s great erotic-ascetic god, can also be found in this posture.
Known as Dhyana Mudra. The archetypal, centered position of contemplation. Hands are held still in the lap, between the upward-facing soles of the feet in lotus position, exemplifying symmetry and stillness.
Known as Tarjani Mudra. Indicates anger, but do not fear. Raised by a guardian spirit at a temple doorway, or in the iconography of a terrifying goddess like Durga or Kali, the finger is meant to point away from you and vanquish what would harm you.
Known as Varada Mudra. You’ll often see this in statues of the standing Buddha as well as in calendar-art prints of Lakshmi, the Hindu goddess of wealth, which are often posted by the cash box in Indian shops.
Silliness – Two Trouble Makers
A couple had two little mischievous boys, ages 8 and 10. They were always getting into trouble, and their parents knew that if any mischief occurred in their town, their sons would get the blame.
The boys’ mother heard that a clergyman in town had been successful in disciplining children, so she asked if he would speak with her boys. The clergyman agreed and asked to see them individually.
So, the mother sent her 8-year-old first, in the morning, with the older boy to see the clergyman in the afternoon.
The clergyman, a huge man with a booming voice, sat the younger boy down and asked him sternly, “Where is God?”
They boy’s mouth dropped open, but he made no response, sitting there with his mouth hanging open.
The clergyman repeated the question. “Where is God?”
Again, the boy made no attempt to answer.
So, the clergyman raised his voice some more and shook his finger in the boy’s face and bellowed, “Where is God!?”
The boy screamed and bolted from the room. He ran directly home and dove into his closet, slamming the door behind him.
When his older brother found him in the closet, he asked, “What happened?”
The younger brother, gasping for breath, replied: “We are in real BIG trouble this time! God is missing, and they think we did it!”