Blessed be those who tend these mid-Winter flames, who keep the embers alight by their sheer warrior’s will, and who will forever honor the darker days of our Craft when the miracles of warmer days remain hidden beneath the snow. The Wolf-Moon cycle follows the Long Night’s Moon cycle, rising with a howl on January 16th (New Moon is 9:17pm EST), swelling to fullness just before Imbolc on 1/31 at 8:27am EST, and darkening to sliver-thin on Valentine’s Day. Under the Wolf Moon, the Fire-Keeper archetype is dominant, and the wise feminine in us all continues to walk forward in conscious grace, leading with an ever-faithful heart and harboring an ever-lit inner altar that burns for some holy and ephemeral dream, as yet unseen and unnamed.
In Catholicism and Christian mysticism, there is a term known as ‘the dark night of the soul.’ The Catholic context refers to a spiritual crisis encountered on one’s journey to a union with God, while the latter is symbolic of the mystery and unpredictability of the journey itself, as illustrated in the 16th century poem by Spanish mystic St. John of the Cross.
Santa Witch: Simple Rituals for a Family Yule
We Witches live in a land starved for magick. The unfortunate union of individualism, consumerism, and the energies of the 13th Moon- the annual, lunar void that tasks us with rest and reflection above all else- has given birth to the absolute antithesis of this yearly Witching Hour. The modern Santa Claus is capitalism’s loud-mouthed answer to this holy, fertile darkness when all of nature is bidding us to turn inward, to sink back into the primordial source of all things. Despite debatably admirable roots, today’s Santa Claus is a marketing tool embodied in a bright red, well-satiated, nocturnal gift-giver who, like many of our Wintertide traditions, has traveled ages from his solemn, Pagan origins.
Allow me to get personal for a minute. I’m a single mother of two very busy, very sensitive little girls. I run a small business as well as work a full time job and another freelance job. On top of all of that, I am called to follow this path of deep devotion and let’s face it, that takes work too. Feeling drained is a constant battle. Even though I know that the more I surrender to this (insane) flow that I find myself in, the easier it will all be. Like the salmon that swims upstream, I HAVE to keep going. The more I take time… rather, MAKE time for my practice, the better I will feel. Not unlike maintaining a regular fitness routine, exercising our mind, soul and spirit has all of the advantages.
‘Tis the season to remember the holy Dead, to honor your ancestral line in somber ritual, and to give a nod to the ephemeral nature of your soft flesh and warm blood. So soon, my love, will we sink back into the source of everything, yet again stepping through the sacred veil and entering the fertile, dark space between death and birth. So soon will we join them, these precious ones for whom we mourn. For now, let us remember these wild creatures for their compassion, their lawlessness, their innocence, and the lessons they gifted us when their hearts were still beating inside the very ribcages that now house wormy soil, have turned to soot and ash, or have otherwise surrendered to the elements.
While it’s been over a week since Jupiter transited from Libra to Scorpio, this is still big news. Jupiter spends over a year in each sign, so its placement will impact the tone of the whole coming year. Jupiter concerns our beliefs, philosophies, and worldview. It magnifies all that it touches, showing us more clearly any problematic tendencies that we ought to address in order to take advantages of Jupiter’s gifts: opportunities, abundance, luck, and prominence. With Jupiter now in Scorpio, we are led into the watery depths of our soul, to analyze the hidden beliefs and assumptions that shape our worldview, that affect our perception, our thought, our action–in short, that create our world. We are asked to examine our deepest motives, to understand the psychology that drives us, to unearth any shame, negativity, patterns of self-sabotage. Scorpio courageously dives into the darkness in order to alchemically transmute what it finds there, so that it may rise like the Phoenix from the ashes, renewed, empowered, enlightened.
This week we have a New Moon in Libra, offering a cycle of developing relationship, seeking balance, harmony, and equanimity. No ordinary Libra New Moon though, this one opposes Uranus which challenges Libra’s quest for balance. Uranus offers surprise, sudden change, breaking away. Uranus can also gift us with insight, genius, creativity, innovation. We may be shown where we need balance in our lives. We may be offered creative new ways to find harmony and engage with others. We may be challenged to find equanimity in times of change. Continue reading “Horoscopes for the Week of October 16, 2017”
Open your palms, look moonward, and breathe in the raw, red musk of dying leaves, smoking pine wood, and ever-cool, so potent spectral mists. Know that this is what the primal feminine smells like. Embody the long-nailed and black-mirror-eyed demoness you were taught to fear during childhood. These are the days of the Great Purge, when the Witch is tasked to dig up her cobwebbed secrets and put them on unapologetic display, to befriend the very shadows that make her bones quake, to strip off and burn every mask she has ever worn, and to do it all in front of her ancestors’ ghosts as they encircle and honor the brave-hearted and strong-willed Priestess she has become. Continue reading “Blood Moon Vows: A Witch’s Unmasking Ritual”
When I was fifteen I spent a few weeks out of the spring semester as an exchange student in Cologne, Germany. Our many guided outings took us to cathedrals and archaeological sites, as well as former palaces and fortresses. Among those destinations was a medieval open-air tower connected to one of the state behemoths. Continue reading “Before Salem: The Burning Times and a Call to all Self-Proclaimed Witches”
On the same day as October 5th’s Full Moon in Aries, the rulers of the lunation, Mars and Venus meet up in Virgo. This is a powerful opportunity to consider the ways in which the feminine and masculine aspects within and without do or do not get along. How can we integrate our inclinations for assertion, movement, drive, passion with those for harmony, receptivity, gentleness, and grace? Continue reading “Horoscopes for the Week of October 3, 2017”