[Tide] The shop is closed on Tuesday/Wednesday. Winter hours are 1-6pm Thurs.-Mon. Featured photo by Ken Gagne.
[posting at 6:30pm] Rain gauge at noon on 1/24 – Dry, Clear, 46F, wind at 0-3mph and gusting, AQI 35-36, UV1. Chance of rain 2% today and 4% tonight. Today looks like a gloriously sunny day again and tomorrow the same! It looks like the rain will hold off until Sunday, although Fri/Sat will be at least partly cloudy. 54F-57F/38F-40F through Saturday, then a 75% chance of rain on Sunday and showers after that. 7 firespots
Sirius is up and twinkly when we’re heading home. It really scintillates going from red to green with yellow and blue tucked in there at times when we’re still in town. Pretty sure that’s from radiant heat, since once we’re crossing Eckman it.s more white in the twinkles. “Twinkle, twinkle, little star!”
I was really tired when we finally got home Sunday night, but I needed to make the frumenty for supper. Tempus did the bacon and I had gotten the carrots done the night before. I didn’t think they had finished cooking but they had and only needed to be re-heated.
We both slept hard. I woke around 1am, but Tempus was so out that I had to shake him awake. He took off very quickly and was back around 7:30 or so. I had done a little sewing, but mostly read and worked on what I was going to write. I was asleep when Tempus got in, but got up because of a cramping leg, had a roll and a cup of tea and watched the pale ghost of the Moon slipping toward the evergreens to the southwest while tiny strings of cloud raced past.
Yesterday we had people right outside the door within minutes of opening. Tempus was actually putting up the flags and they stopped to talk to him or I would have not had the cash register or computer actually up and running.
After that the day was fairly quiet. I was writing. I’m not sure what Tempus was doing, but various bumps and bangs and snaps came out of the area around the saw and more thumps and bumps from in back, later. He also made bread. The only thing that smells better than fresh bread is frying bacon! 🙂 …oh, yum, I have a fresh, hot, buttered roll!
…and promptly fell down a rabbit hole, dagnabbit…. I want to get this done and go home to collapse. I don’t think we’re going to do much tonight. I know I’m really tired, although I got enough sleep last night, for once.
Today, though we’ll sleep in a bit, Tempus has to do laundry before the bulk route. I’ll come into town to get the newsletter together, but then he’ll have to take me home. Maybe I can find my ribbon tonight….
Today’s Plant is the Western Azalea, Rhododendron Occidentale. Azaleas are a subset of the rhodys. This is the main one that grows around here. It’s hard to tell from the shape and size of the plant that it’s an azalea, or even from the flowers, although the branches are thinner and the leaves shorter and rounder than those of rhododendrons. It least it’s hard for those of us who are familiar with the showy garden hybrids, which tend to be small and compact. The other West Coast azalea is Rhododendron Albiflorum, and there’s not a whacking lot of info floating around about that one. The wiki is here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rhododendron_occidentale The Chinese call azaleas “thinking of home bush”. Magickal uses for azalea are to encourage light spirits, happiness and gaiety.
Today is the eve of Disting, or Disablot, a festival in honor of the Disir, the female helper spirits. Here’s one version of a ritual. http://www.adf.org/rituals/norse/disting/disting.html and a link about the Disir here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Disir …and here’s another link with related information. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/D%C3%ADsabl%C3%B3t
The shop is closed on Tuesday/Wednesday. Winter hours are 1-6pm Thurs.-Mon. Need something off hours? Give us a call at 541-563-7154 or Facebook message 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 1/31 at 9:46pm. Waning Gibbous Moon – Best time for draining the energy behind illness, habits or addictions. Magicks of this sort, started now, should be ended before the phase change to the New Moon. – Associated God/dess: Hera/Hero, Cybele, Zeus the Conqueror, Mars/Martius, Anansi, Prometheus. Phase ends at the Quarter on 1/25 at 5:41am. Waning Crescent Moon –Best time for beginning introspective magicks that are more long term (full year cycle) A good time for beginning knot magicks to “bind up” addictions and illness (finish just before the Tide Change of Dark to New) and “tying up loose ends” God/dess aspects – Demeter weeping for her Daughter, Mabon, Arachne Tyr. Phase ends on 1/27 at 9:46am.
Sirius twinkles brightly after dinnertime below Orion in the southeast. Around 8 p.m., depending on your location, Sirius shines precisely below fiery Betelgeuse in Orion’s shoulder. How accurately can you time this event for your location, perhaps judging against the vertical edge of a building? Earlier in the evening, Sirius leads. Later in the evening, Betelgeuse leads.
Last Quarter Moon occurs at 8:41 A.M. EST, rising just after midnight on the 24th and standing highest at dawn. But you don’t need to be a pre-dawn riser to enjoy this phase, which is visible in the bright daytime sky until just before noon. It is true that early-morning, pre-dawn observations will net you some stunning views, though. Now is the time to enjoy the long line of craters marching down the middle of our Moon, as well as the long, sweeping curve of the Apennine Mountains, which form the southeastern rim of Mare Imbrium (the Sea of Rains). Imbrium also shows off two large, prominent craters in the waning sunlight: Plato at its top and Archimedes toward its bottom. Readily visible is the bright, rayed crater Copernicus, which lies southwest of Imbrium. And marching downward, just west of the terminator dividing light from day, are large craters that include (among many more) Ptolemaeus, Alphonsus, and Arzachel.
Venus (magnitude –4.6) is climbing up into the dawn. Look for it low in the east-southeast in early dawn. In a telescope or even good binoculars it’s a crescent, thickening and shrinking each week.
Runic half-month of Perdhro/ Peorth, 1/12-1/27. – Feast of Brewing, Druidic, Source: The Phoenix and Arabeth 1992 Calendar. Runic half-month of Elhaz/Algiz, from 1/28-2/11. This half month: optimistic power, protection and sanctuary.
Goddess Month of of Bridhe, runs from 1/23 – 2/19
Celtic Tree Month of Luis/Rowan, Jan 21-Feb 17, Luis (LWEESH)
Venus (1/29), Mercury (2/3) Retrograde
Color – Red
©2021 M. Bartlett, Some parts separately copyright
Celtic Tree Month of Luis/Rowan, Jan 21-Feb 17, Luis (LWEESH)/rowan – The rowan, or mountain ash (Sorbus aucuparia L.) is related to servceberries. The red berries were historically used to lure birds into traps, and the specific epithet aucuparia comes from words meaning “to catch a bird”. Birds are also responsible for dispersing the seeds. Rowans thrive in poor soils and colonize disturbed areas. In some parts of Europe they are most common around ancient settlements, either because of their weedy nature or because they were planted. Rowans flower in May. They grow to 15 m (50 feet) and are members of the Rose family (Rosaceae). They are cultivated in North America, especially in the northeast.
Luis – Rowan Ogam letter correspondences
Color: Grey and Red
Meaning: Controlling your life; Protection against control by others.
Quert – Apple Ogam letter correspondences to study this month
Meaning: A choice must be made
Tides for Alsea Bay
Day High Tide Height Sunrise Moon Time % Moon
~ /Low Time Feet Sunset Visible
Tu 25 High 5:28 AM 7.8 7:42 AM Rise 12:45 AM 59
~ 25 Low 12:23 PM 1.6 5:16 PM Set 11:31 AM
~ 25 High 6:15 PM 5.5
~ 25 Low 11:42 PM 2.6
Affirmation/Thought for the Day – Love is not giving up when all things go wrong.
Journal Prompt – Wiki – Tell what you like about one of your hobbies.
~ … small time punk stuff coming from a punk Opposition. – Paul Keating
~ The heyday of woman’s life is the shady side of fifty. – Elizabeth Stanton (1815-1902) US reformer
~ No matter what happens, somebody will find a way to take it too seriously. – Dave Barry
~ The sure-thing boat never gets far from shore. – Dale Carnegie
The sleet streams,
The snow flies;
The fawn dreams
With wide brown eyes. – William Rose Benét (1886–1950)
Imbolc Magick – Lore
Imbolc tidbit – From: http://www.ladybridget.com/r/febi001.html
Imbolc Introduction – Copyright Lady Bridget 1997
Imbolc, Oimelc, Imbolg, or Candlemass (the Christianized version of the name) is the celebration that occurs when the Sun reaches 15 ° Aquarius, and is therefore considered a Major Sabbat. This date was traditionally celebrated on Feb 1st or 2nd, and is still noted today in our country as “Ground Hog’s Day”, which marks that there is only 6 more weeks of winter; we have reached the half-way point.
There are some traditions that may say this holiday marks the beginning of Spring, but this doesn’t hold up under scrutiny. Imbolc marks the middle of the winter season, just as Yule marked the beginning, and Ostara will mark the beginning of Spring at the Equinox.
The Celts marked this holiday as “Brigit’s Day” or “Brid’s Day” in Irish. Bridget is one of the few Pagan Dieties to have survived as Saints in the Christian religion. She was a very powerful and meaningful Goddess, and there was no way to force the populace to give her up, therefore they canonized her as “Saint Brigit” and up until 1220 BCE, her shrine at Kildare had a perpetual fire that was constantly tended by virgins, by the Priestesses of the Goddess, and after Christianity took over, it was continued by the virgin nuns. In the 1960’s after Vatican II, it was decided that Saint Brigit did not have enough evidence to canonize her and then she was decanonized. However, in Ireland, she is still very much reverenced, as she is by Wiccans, as the triple Goddess. One aspect ruled poetry, writing, inspiration, and music; one ruled healing and midwifery and herbology, and one ruled fire, and the arts of smithcraft. Incidentally, this holiday was also called by the Christians, the Feast of the Purification of Mary, for it was believed that women were “unclean” for six weeks after giving birth. So since she had given birth at the Winter Solstice, this is the date when she would be purified. We look upon this as the time when the Goddess who gave birth at the Winter Solstice, is now transformed in the Maiden once again.
The Imbolc, or Oimelc, was the ancient Celtic festival celebrating the birth and freshening of sheep and goats, the Feast of Milk. Brigit’s feast day was called “La Feill Bhride” and represents the seed that is waiting to stir again. It is a time of great anticipation and the celebration of possibilities. New life is about to awaken in the earth, the earth is furrowed and prepared to receive the seed.
The Valentine’s Day festivities were also connected to this time, being celebrated now on Feb 14th. There are different explanations for this day, the Christian church having one, and folklorists having another. The Christian version states that a Dr. Valentine in ancient Greece used to perform illegal Christian weddings and he was sacrificed to the lions on this date and became Saint Valentine. Therefore, hearts and flowers are exchanged to honor the love that he had and the love of the Christian couples he joined in matrimony. The folklorists attribute this holiday to the “gallant” or “galantine” young men who pursued their sweethearts at this time, since some Latin languages pronounced “g” as a “v” in earlier times. Thus, the “valentine” would be the attentions of a would-be suitor, and whatever methods he might employ to win the maiden’s heart!
At this time the Roman’s celebrated Lupercalia, which also was a fertility festival. The Priests of Pan ran through the streets insuring women’s fertility by spanking them with thongs made from goatskin and blessed by the local Strega. There are many cultures which had similar holiday practices at similar times. So much so that one has to wonder if this was due primarily to an agricultural society having a tendency to celebrate the same things at the same times of the year, or to an more universal religion or culture, having roots far in antiquity and being handed down over the centuries, changing only slightly over the generations?
Our tradition celebrates with a Brid’s Bed, in which our Brid’s Doll, made of corn, or straw, and dressed very prettily, is placed. She is the Maiden at this time, young, playful, and belonging only to herself, or virginal. Alongside her is placed an acorn wand, sized according to the Doll’s size, which represents the penis, the regenerative male force in nature. We tell Brid our secret dreams and wishes that we want to see manifest. This is a time when we look to the future and dream! This is the Sabbat where we can plan ahead for what “seeds” we will “sow” in the coming year, and how we plan to nurture our seeds for a successful harvest later.
Other customs include lit candles in every window of the house, and keeping a perpetual candle on the Altar to Brid. Seeds are brought into circle to be blessed by the Goddess and the Gods and to absorb the circle’s vibrant energy. Chant, dance, and sing, and send energy back into the earth to help her awaken, so that Spring may once more bloom. Straw can be woven into “Brid’s Cross”, “Bridget’s Knot”, or “Corn Maiden” and hung in the corners of rooms, over doorways, and over beds, for fertility, prosperity, and for the blessings of the Goddess. Remember – fertility doesn’t necessarily mean having babies! Fertility of the mind, imagination, and of projects you are working to bring to “birth” are also desired manifestations, and will be blessed by fertility rituals. If you are of child-bearing ability and do not wish to be pregnant, than stress that the fertility you desire is of the mind, or of a certain project, or your creativity, etc, and that is what you will manifest.
It is also traditional in some covens for the Priestess to wear a crown of thirteen candles, a lunar number, representing herself as the Maiden of Light. Some covens have a crown made up, others use thirteen small electric bulbs instead of candles (which seems safer!). This is the Feast of Light, as the winter is dying away, and the sun grows stronger, and so bonfires are especially appropriate as well. In ages past, people jumped the bonefires to be cured of winter colds and flu. This is the holiday to bring your candles to circle, to have them be blessed by the Sabbat energies. We have small candles of each color in circle, and we mark them appropriately with symbols. Then during the year, when we dress any candle for any purpose, we add a few drops from our Imbolc candles, so that the Sabbat blessings and energy will also be added to the working.
The candles, the bonefires, and the lights are all symbolically adding energy to the waxing sun. In addition, they have another purpose. For remember at Samhain, Persephone went to the Underworld, to greet and care for the spirits of the dead? That was three months ago, and now, it is time for us to signal to her to return, and bring Spring back to the earth. We light the way for her to see her way back from Hades, and to remind her that we, with Demeter, are awaiting her here among the living.
In our tradition, this Sabbat is the only Sabbat where new coveners can be initiated into first degree. This makes this holiday a special one for us as it marks our “birthday” into the Craft! We always have a birthday cake for ourselves, and we celebrate together our inititation anniversary. We also use one candle for each covener, a large white candle, which is dressed, blessed, and lit only on Imbolc, and on each succeeding Imbolc thereafter until it is burned out. This candle is special to us, and among other things is a symbol of the Light which we are now celebrating, and which we embody.
The usual colors for Imbolc are white and yellow. White contains all the other colors in the spectrum, and therefore embodies all colors, and is a symbol of all possibilities; the beginning, the new. Yellow has always been the color associated with the Sun, along with gold, and is a call to the Sun to continue strengthening, and chase winter away. Traditional foods include potatoes, carrots, and any root vegetables, as people in ancient times were getting near the bottom of their root cellar by now. Also corn, as it is yellow for the Sun, and so many cultures relied on corn as a main staple of their diets. Lambs were being born around this time, and so lamb was also served at this holiday, along with rabbits, which were easy to trap, and other wild animals who stayed above ground during the cold months. We serve a hearty red wine during the God’s half of the year, but you can also serve milk, since this was a celebration of the “freshening” of the goats as well. Indeed, it was often a “Milk Festival” and Oimelc means “milk of ewes”.
Ideas for ritual can be the making of Brid’s Beds, Brigit’s Knots, Corn Dollies, as well as blessing seeds for your garden, blessing the water for the seeds, and blessing your candles for the coming year, to name just a few. In our tradition, we don’t do personal magick on the Sabbats. We save that for the remaining 357 days of the year! Sabbats are for returning energy to the Gods and Goddesses, for being thankful for our blessings, and for blessing our dreams, wishes, and hopes. We make plans for the development of our lives on a spiritual level; for example: a happy home, healthy environment, peaceful country, and the renewal of the earth would be appropriate blessings for the Sabbat, and wonderful ideals to give your energy towards.
For more ideas and instructions on making some projects for Imbolc, or any other holiday, I strongly recommend Dan and Pauline Campanelli’s books “Ancient Ways” and “Wheel of the Year”, and also Scott Cunningham’s “Spell Crafts”. These books give you how-to illustrated instructions on a variety of holiday themes, and the Campanelli books also give you the historical background and how these projects tie in with each season.
“Candlemas: the Light Returns” by Mike Nichols
“Brigit of the Celts” by Morning Glory Zell
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Silliness – For The Kids… – Mother: Why did you just swallow the money I gave you? Son: Well you did say it was my lunch money!