30 April 2012

Samhain in the South

Temple's Ancestral Altar, 2010
The sacred Wheel of the Year has turned once again and we find ourselves at the sabbat known as Samhain, believed to be a Gaelic festival where one's ancestors are honoured as well as the gateway to the dark half of the year is opened.  In our modern times, it has been linked to being the "Celtic New Year" thanks to the writings of Sir James Frazer and Sir John Rhys.

Referred to a Goidelic, Samhain maked the end of the harvest and it was believed that any crop that had not yet been gathered in was now the property of the Death Hag.  With  bonfires being lit, the celebrations were said to last over a period of several days, being a "last hoorah" before the coldness of the Winter months set in.

27 April 2012

Abundance of Blessings

There is a section behind the Temple building that does not receive a lot of sun.  The previous owner planted a fig and a hibiscus around the edges, but for the most part, nothing grows (except for weeds once the Winter rains have arrived).  An idea came to me a while back to possibly pave the area and upon the pavers construct a labyrinth.

Labyrinths have been around for some 4,000 years and are found in just about every major religious tradition in the world.  They have been an integral part of many cultures such as Native American, Greek, Celtic and Mayan.  To the Hopis, the labyrint was a sacred symbol for "Mother Earth".  Similar to Stonehenge and the pyramids, they are magical geometric forms that define sacred space.  Chartres Cathedral at Chartres, France is a very famous labyrinth.

24 April 2012

A Day of Remembrance - ANZAC Day

Tomorrow, the 25th April, is the 97th anniversary of the landing at anniversary of the landing on Gallipoli in 1915 by the Allied troups.  I wrote last year about ANZAC Day, what the name means,as well as how and what it is remembered today. 

This year, I thought I would share "In Flanders Fields", a poem by Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae (November 30, 1872 – January 28, 1918)m who was a Canadian poet, physician, author, artist and soldier during World War I and a surgeon during the Second Battle of Ypres, in Belgium:

23 April 2012

A Week of Much Activity

Sometimes the world that I operate in is extremely busy and chaotic - with a lot of things happening or underway at the same time ... organised chaos I personally prefer to call it, and for the most part, things run extremely smoothly (especially now as I am learning to "delegate" to other coven members.

While it is still a month out from the Encountering the Dark Goddess workshop, the final proofing of the workshop notes is well underway, activities that will be undertaken throughout the day have been planned, and the sourcing of specialised objects that will be used during the day.  There is still room for a couple more participants to join us on the 26th of May - registrations however will be closing within a couple of weeks so registrations (with a deposit) need to be received in time.

16 April 2012

Being Drawn into the Underworld

Last month I mentioned what it was like to be a Servant of the Gods which has evolved into an increasing interest in ancient Mesopotamia (which corresponds to an area including modern day Iraq, north eastern Syria, south easthern Turkey and south western Iran).  The word Mesopotamia means "between two rivers" which refers to the Tigris and the Euphrates Rivers.

This area is often referred to as being the "Cradle of Civilisation", with templed cities pre-dating the buildings of Egypt, and has been the home for many differing people - from the indigenous Sumerians and Akkadians (including Assyrians and Babylonians) who dominated Mesopotamia from the beginning of written history (c3,100 BCE) to the fall of Babylon in 539 BCE, when it was conquered by the Achaemenid Empire, only to later fall to Alexander the Great in 332 BCE.

13 April 2012

Moon Water Tonic

Moon Water Tonic
(by Marguerite Elsbeth)

Tonic waters containing the energies of the moon embody very powerful healing benefits that bring about integral balance and wholeness throughout the body, mind and soul. Clear quartz crystal catalyzes the absorption of lunar energies as well as amplifies the healing benefits.

To Prepare Moon Water
1. Wait for a clear night, preferably on or right before the full moon. put your crystal in a clear glass and cover with one cup of purified water.

2. Check an almanac for the exact time of sundown on the day you have chosen. At sundown, place the glass out of doors in a moonlit place (cover the glass with clear plastic wrap).

3. Remove the glass at dawn. The water is now filled with lunar potency. Drink the moon water every morning to prepare your body, mind and spirit for the stress of the day.

05 April 2012

Dancing the Esbat

According the Merriam Webster dictionary, an "esbat" comes for the French word esbatre meaning "to divert, amuse, beat" .. and that is what we will be doing com Saturday night when the first Full Moon Gathering for 2012 to be held back in the Botanic Park will take place.

I find that spending time in the light of the Full Moon a perfect way to "divert" my attention away from the stresses and worries of mundane, allowing my body time to recharge and my mind a change to refocus on what is actually important as opposed to what may be perceived as being important.  It is also a perfect opportunity to "divert" my attention and energies to those who are in a more needy situation than myself by giving thanks and gratitude that whilst at times it may appear to be difficult, I have the ability to keep the roof over my head, food on my table, clothes on my back .. the basic needs we all seek.

02 April 2012

Year of the Scribe update

Last month I wrote about this year seeming to be the Year of the Scribe for me with news that two of my essays submitted to various anthologies had been accepted, along with some devotional poetry marked to appear in an upcoming Australian collection.  Over the weekend I received news that a further essay of mine had been accepted, this time in an upcoming anthology entitled Unto Herself: A Devotional Anthology for Independent Goddesses that will be produced by Bibliotheca Alexandrina.