Monday, January 30, 2012

Pagan Blog Project - Boline


The boline is a small, white-handled knife used for more mundane aspects of wicca - it is basically a utility knife as opposed to the ritualistic athame.  I keep mine next to my athame on the right hand - or god - side of my altar.  While the sickle shape is popular, it can be expensive and difficult to find.  Mine is actually a paring knife, though that is a little small and I am on the lookout for a slightly larger knife.  The boline can be used in cooking and preparing sabbat meals, in cutting herbs from the garden and carving runes or other images into candles.  This morning I used mine to free a wick that had become embedded in candle wax and then to carve the triple goddess symbol into a white candle I often use on Mondays (Moon Day).  If you heat the tip of the blade in the candle flame, it's a little easier to begin the carving.  Be careful - blood letting is not necessary! 

Monday, January 23, 2012

Pagan Blog Project

Book of Shadows



I have been practicing Wicca for about a year and a half now and my book of shadows have been small blank books where I write info, spells and thoughts that have come to me during meditation.  This year I decided to start a loose-leaf binder so I could better organize my information as well as incorporating things I find on the internet (including info from all our blogging!).  I chose a green 3" binder and I want to do some scrapbooking to personalize it.  I also have sheet protectors for my printed pages so they'll hold up better through all the referencing.
It will be more manageable since I can divide the info into sections for correspondences, Sabbats, spells, recipes, and so on. 

It's nice to have a history of your spells and rituals so that when you're not feeling the magick, you can flip back and see where a spell you worked several months ago has come to fruition in ways you couldn't foresee at the time.  It's such an inspiration for confirming your trust in the goddess and the workings of the universe.  Blessed be!


Sunday, January 15, 2012

Pagan Blog Project Week 2

Amethyst

Stones and crystals can be a fun and colorful aspect of your magickal working.  Coming from the ground, stones are full of mother earth’s power and energy. 
When you first receive your stone, wash it in salt and/or water to rid it of any negative energy – you don’t know where it’s been!  Charge the stone by leaving it outside under the light of the full moon. The next day you can place it on your altar or fashion it into a pendant or pouch to wear around your neck.

I only have a small assortment so far, mostly from the Pagan Pride festival I went to last summer.  One of the stones I was most drawn to because of its lavender color was the amethyst.  When I read about it, it quickly became a particular favorite.  Its properties are said to be calming, centering and healing. Purple crystals are thought to aid with receptive and spiritual energies.  The color purple is associated with magick, royalty and the gods. 

Amethyst is a radiant gemstone, meaning that its energies are expansive. It is said that when you meditate with amethyst you are helping the Earth, because the violet ray will help to transform the entire world into a better place. It is the most highly valued stone in the quartz group. It has many supernatural powers and brings luck, ensures constancy and protects against magic (I’m guessing negative magic directed at you from others) and homesickness. It has long been known to help against drunkenness. (Maybe I should sink it into my wine goblet!)

Physical uses

Hold the amethyst near your temples to alleviate tension and migraine headaches, as well as to reduce stress and anxiety.
Violet has a calming effect upon the nervous system. Insomnia may be relieved by gently rubbing an amethyst on the temples or forehead.
In directing the energy of the amethyst to the lungs, relief may be obtained from asthma and circulation problems.

Spiritual uses

Amethyst promotes spirituality, protection and peace.  It is an excellent focus during meditation. It is here to teach the lesson of humility, to “Let go and let god.” Amethyst is very useful for people grieving over lost loved ones, as it subliminally communicates that there is no death. It is recommended for stimulating greater love and attuning with healing forces. You can recharge your own energy by holding an amethyst over the crown chakra, third eye, or heart chakra where a very high vibration centered in love, balance and harmony will be transferred.

Sources:
www.experiencefestival.com
Natural Witchery – Ellen Dugan
Everyday Witch A-Z – Deborah Blake

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Pagan Blog Project

Abundance
I want to share what has probably made me happiest about being Wiccan: the knowledge that I am loved and adored and there is always enough of everything.  I create my own universe and have the power to be happy – even joyful – every day no matter what.
If you haven’t embraced this concept I know it can sound very na├»ve and even make you angry.  You think, “Of course there isn’t always enough.  If someone has two pieces of the pie, I don’t get a piece.  I try to be happy but someone yells at me or cuts me off and ruins my day.”  I’ve been there, I still go there on a daily basis.  The magick happens when you shift your focus from what you don’t have to how you feel when you do have what you need, when everything goes your way, when something wonderful happens.
Instead of living and thinking from a place of fear and want (I can’t afford that, I never have time for myself) spend some time every day feeling happy that you already have all that you need – it’s all around you waiting to be manifested.  This doesn’t involve a big commitment – it’s something you can do in the shower or as you fall asleep.  For more focus, do a gratitude ritual at your next circle. 

I borrowed this idea from Tess Whitehurst in her book, “Magical Housekeeping.”  I have a jade plant with a little ceramic frog in it.  Whenever I walk by the plant, I try to remember to whisper “Thank you for bringing me good luck and good fortune.”  Focusing on your current blessings helps open you up to more good things. Before you know it, you’ll find yourself making decisions and living your life in ways that you previously thought were out of reach.
Since so many people resolve to be more fit in the new year, let’s try that as an example.  Instead of focusing on your body and despairing that it’s too fat or not attractive enough or (insert your personal bugaboo here), stop for a moment and  realize and be grateful that your body has brought you this far.  For me that meant just being aware that, in spite of me constantly berating it, my body allows me to do so many wonderful things – yoga, gardening, knitting, standing all day at my job, listening to music, enjoying sunsets and good food.  It seemed a small thing, yet if freed me from obsessing over diet and workouts and comparing myself to others and finding myself lacking.

Changing your life is as simple and as earth shaking as adjusting the way you see the world, how you choose to move through it.  True magick consists of this – creating the life you want.
Remember, the universe loves you and wants you to be happy.  You are loved.  Blessed be!