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.
A new calendar year is almost upon us and as such I am currently putting together the finishing touches to my Manifest Your Dreamsworkshop 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.
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).
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).
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.
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.”
Night of Hekate of the Underworld is November 16. Celebrate her chthonic side and honor your own darkness with a solitary ritual sacrificing what longs to die within you to Hekate. We hold within us all the energy of the Underworld. There are parts of us that long to die and others that call to be retrieved. On Hekate’s Night, offer to her the parts of you that need to die, thus creating the space for your soul to return.
Transformative Death Walking
Death walking refers to forms of witchcraft that explore the Underworld side of magick, including communicating with spirits and spiritual death. As witches, we are forever walking on the other side of the veil, whether through mediumship or personal development work. Offering to Hekate an emotional sacrifice of that which longs to die within us is part of our Witches’ Journey. Keeping the past and our pain on life support while we attempt to transform ourselves inevitably yields poor results. What is it that longs to die within you? A past hurt? A dysfunctional way of thinking? Perhaps ideas or practices relating to your witchery?
The end of October, that marks the gateway to summer, may have passed, however tomorrow, 7 November marks the astronomical timing of Bealtaine, when the sun moves into 15 deg Scorpio. The festival of Bealtaine is based around an ancient Celtic festival that was associated with the sun. It is often believed that the word “Bealtaine” means “bright fire,” however medieval Irish glossators associated it with the God, Bel, who was considered to be a version of the ancient Celtic God of fire and light, Belenos.
Belenos: the Shining One
Belenos (meaning meant “bright, brilliant” or “shining”), or variants of his name, was known throughout the Celtic lands of western Europe, such as Belenus and Bel. At least 31 inscriptions citing Belenos or Apollo Belenos (as he was sometimes known in Roman-dominated areas) have been found by archaeologists, more citations than almost any other Celtic deity. His name, nature, and function are testified to by classical commentators and the imagery of sculpture and votive offerings associated with Belenos.
As the end of October quickly approaches, it heralds in “that time of the year” again when, despite it being the gateway to Summer here in the Southern Hemisphere where people should be heralding in the festival of life and light that is Bealtaine, the increasing commercialism of Halloween becomes more and more evident.
Every year I notice more “trick or treating” encouragements echoing what is largely perceived to be a American-styled “custom” – if only it was that well embraced. The other year I was even greeted to some local “little darlings” virtually camping out on my doorstep for me to come home from work wearing black bin liners as capes. What a total let down!!
“Words are singularly the most powerful force available to humanity. We can choose to use this force constructively with words of encouragement, or destructively using words of despair. Words have energy and power with the ability to help, to heal, to hinder, to hurt, to harm, to humiliate and to humble.” (Yehuda Berg)
Considering the “powerful force” of the words we utter, we must discipline ourselves to speak in a way that conveys respect, gentleness and humility. One of the clearest sign of a moral life is right speech. Perfecting our speech is one of the keystones of mature people. Before speaking take a few moments to contemplate what you will say and how you will say it; while considering the impact they will have on the listener/s. Be kind to all and speak words that are beacons of inspiration, enthusiasm and encouragement to all. Kind and sweet words are always music to the ears of the listeners.