Yemaya Blessing of the Waters

Yemaya Blessing of the Waters, Grange Beach, Adelaide

For over ten years, around the first full moon of the year, I have lead a special beach side rite that honours the Yorùbá Orisha or Goddess of the living ocean, Yemaya (also spelt Yemoja and Iemoja). This is year is no different, with the Yemaya Blessing of the Waters rite being held this evening at Grange Beach.

Originally from West Africa where her name means “Mother whose children are like fish”, Yemaya is the owner of the Ogun River and a lake named for her.  As the African diaspora occurred, Yemaya traveled with her children to the Americas and Caribbean, where the Mother of Waters became known as Mother of Oceans.

The Wonders of Frankincense

When the three Magi from the east arrived in Bethlenhem bearing gifts for the new messiah, one of these gifts was the resin frankincense.  As recorded in Matthew 2:11:

“And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh.”


Frankincense is a milky white resin extracted from species of the genus Boswellia, which found in the Arabian Peninsula, eastern Africa and India. The finest and most aromatic of this species is a small tree, the Boswellia sacra, found growing in Somalia, Oman and Yemen.

The Time of Janus is Upon Us

New yeare forth looking out of Janus gate,
Doth seeme to promise hope of new delight:
And bidding th’old Adieu, his pass’d date
Bids all old thoughts to die in dumpish spright
And calling forth out of sad Winters night,
Fresh love, that long hath slept in cheerlesse bower:
Wils him awake, and soone about him dight
His wanton wings and darts of deadly power.

To the ancient Romans, the dual faced God, Janus, was the God of beginnings and transitions, and as such, he was also perceived to be the God who ruled over gates and doors, doorways and passages, as well as also endings.  With one face looking back into the past, and the other into the future, it is little wonder that as we approach New Year’s Eve, Janus can easily come to mind. 

Dark Moons and New Moons

dark_moon

There is often confusion between “Dark Moon” and “New Moon”, with the phrases often being used interchangeably, even on calendars. Yet, as each moon has its own unique energies, understanding the lunar cycle properly can be crucial to the timing of ritual work that focuses on drawing upon those energetic qualities.

Clearing a Space for Change

A new calendar year is almost upon us and as such I am currently putting together the finishing touches to my Manifest Your Dreams workshop that I will be hosting on Saturday, 19 January 2019. However I thought I would share the following article from Madisyn Taylor about removing clutter. The two themes are often considered to be connected because if our lives (and our environment) are cluttered then we often lose sight of our dreams and desires. Therefore once the clutter is removed, then we often find ourselves back on track to pursue the things that we truly want.

We hold onto material objects because we think they make us feel secure, when in reality they are cluttering our lives.

In life, we tend to have an easier time acquiring possessions than we do getting rid of them.  Just as we harbour emotional baggage that is difficult to let go of, our lives can tend to be filled with material objects that we may feel compelled to hold on to.  Most people are not conscious of how much they own and how many of their possessions are no longer adding value to their life. They fiercely hold on to material objects because this makes them feel secure or comfortable.  While it is true that the ownership of “stuff” can make you feel good for awhile, it seldom satisfies the deep inner longings that nearly everyone has for fulfilment and satisfaction.  It is only when we are ready to let go of our baggage and be vulnerable that it becomes possible to recognize the emotional hold that our possessions can have on us.

It is not uncommon to hold on to material objects because we are attached to them or fear the empty spaces that will remain if we get rid of them.  Giving away the souvenirs from a beloved voyage may feel like we are erasing the memory of that time in our life.  We may also worry that our loved ones will feel hurt if we do not keep the gifts they have given us.

It is easy to convince ourselves that unused possessions might come in handy someday or that parting with them will cause you emotional pain.  However, when your personal space is filled with objects, there is no room for anything new to enter and stay in your life.  Your collection of belongings may “protect” you from the uncertainties of an unknown future while keeping you stuck in the past.  Holding on to unnecessary possessions often goes hand in hand with holding on to pain, anger, and resentment, and letting go of your material possessions may help you release emotional baggage. 

When you make a conscious decision to fill your personal space with only the objects that you need or bring you joy, your energy level will soar.  Clearing your personal space can lead to mental clarity and an improved memory.  As you learn to have a more practical and temporary relationship to objects, positive changes will happen, and you will have space to create the life that you desire.

If manifesting your dreams and setting a vision for 2019 is something you would like to do then register for the Manifest Your Dreams workshop that will be taking place on Saturday, 19 January 2019.

Limited places are available so book early as this workshop will not be repeated this year.

The Magick of Mid Summer

For those of us residing in the Southern Hemisphere, mid Summer is upon us, marking the time of the year when the sun is allegedly in its glory, being the time of the longest day and the shortest night. 

While the term “Mid Summer” indicates the height of the Summer, there is still an undertone of darkness in the light.  This is because as the power of the sun is celebrated, from this point, it also commences its decline in power as the Southern Hemisphere begins to rotate away from the sun (as in the diagram below).

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The Summer Solstice: Time of Abundance

As the sun completes is southward journey, it rests briefly over the Tropic of Capricorn before moving northward again.  When it enters the astrological sign of Capricorn in the Southern Hemisphere, we know that the sun is at its highest and brightest, and that the time of the Summer Solstice has arrived.  For those of us residing in Adelaide in South Australia, this timing will be on Friday, 22 December 2017 around 2:58 am).

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Training in Contemporary Wytchcraft and the Magickal Arts

Often I am asked about the training structure within the Temple of the Dark Moon.  So, as applications are currently being considered for the 2019 Outer Court intake, it seems an appropriate time to briefly talk about this.

All training that occurs within the Temple of the Dark Moon is undertaken depending on time constraints and possible vacancies within the Temple’s two circles – these being the Inner Court (a closed circle consisting of dedicants and initiates only) as well as the Outer Court (consisting of students undertaking training with the overall view of gaining access into the Inner Court).

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Keep pure your Highest Ideal

Within contemporary wytchcraft, there is the concept of acting with respect to one’s “Highest Ideal” – as is stated within the “Charge of the Goddess” where the Moon Goddess speaks:

“Keep pure your highest ideal; strive ever towards it;
let naught stop you or turn you aside.”

One’s “Highest Ideal” can be likened to one’s “True Will” as found within the Thelemetic magickal tradition, where an individual, a follower of that path acts in accordance with their Higher Self, one’s Holy Guardian Angel.

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Putting things into Practice

Being an avid reader, it is not unusual for me to have not only a number of books on the go at any one time, but also books on various subjects, especially the numerous techniques and/or magickal practices.  One book I read a number of years ago which I thoroughly enjoyed was Abrahadabra: Understanding Aleister’s Thelemic Magick by Rodney Orpheus (Weiser Books, 2005).  A strange choice for someone proclaiming to following contemporary wytchcraft some may say.  However, within it, I came across a passage that, while I have adapted it to having a more witchcraft focus in the posting below, even in its original format within Orpheus’s book, it provides much food for thought regardless of what spiritual path you may follow …

“One of the keys to contemporary witchcraft is personal development. This means you have to do the work yourself. Simply reading books and/or web sites is not good enough. While this may increase your theoretical knowledge (or then again may totally confuse you further), unless you do it, you are wasting your time. Knowledge is not the same thing as understanding.”

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