Sabbat


Yule

Yule (Photo credit: Jupiter Firelyte)

Blessed Yule everyone!

I’ve been away for the last couple months. Work has kept me busy, really busy. I’ve also needed time to regroup and focus on what is important so as not to get scattered. My rituals have been simple and my meditations brief. I could probably use a lot more time to just sit and breathe. I’m looking forward to the holidays to get my balance back and to reconnect. Actually, just the act of writing this blog right now is having a surprisingly calming effect.

I did a journey not long ago and asked how do I get my balance back. I saw myself aboard a ship in the middle of a storm. There was one message: Get off the ship. So that’s what I am trying to do. Life sometimes feels like it is setting the agenda and it takes a lot of energy to get the control back. The hardest part is usually to recognize the madness as out of control. And then to stare the beast down and rise above it. So that’s what I am trying to do. I’m also trying to reconnect with what brings me joy. You know, the feeling deep in your being that takes over and makes you laugh uncontrollably, or create wonders, or sigh in deep contentment. I wish you many of these moments.

The moral of the last few months is that there is a time to focus entirely on you. The world is usually all the better for it.

Tonight, the whole family lit a candle to help the sun come up. We made wishes for our happiness and for there to be light in our world. It was simple.  The candles are still burning bright behind me. As we enter the time of celebration of this light, whatever we may call it, I make a wish to reconnect with Joy. May the light shed our fears and bring out the authentic self we were born to be.

Blessed Yule!

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Blessed Lammas everyone!

 

Loaf Mass was the christianized version of this Sabbat, where the first harvest flour was used to bake bread. This bread was then placed on the altar at mass as an offering.

 

Bread is such an important symbol in Christianity. More than a commemoration of the Last Supper, it is also a symbol of our life’s work and how that work is our own personal offering on the divine altar. It marks a change from the offering of sacrificial animals at the Temple altar to our own offering of what we do with our lives. We stop offering others’ blood and start giving our own sweat.

 

Harvest is a symbol that outweighs words. Isn’t it the basis of our survival and the basis for all our celebrations? The combination of offering bread and commemorating the work that brought it about is such a powerful image.

 

You recognize a tree by its fruit. Harvest time is that time to honor the work you have done all year and to give thanks for the fruit it has borne.

 

May your harvest be plentiful!

Bread

Bread (Photo credit: CeresB)

Greetings everyone!

 

Wanted to let you know that I wrote a post on Pagan Square/Witches and Pagans on the Sciences et Avenir – Hors séries (January-February 2013) issue on the Pagan origins of Christian beliefs.

http://witchesandpagans.com/EasyBlog/the-origins-of-our-beliefs.html

Enjoy reading!

Adelina

An artist's impression of Sirius A and Sirius ...

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‘I light this candle and dispel the darkness.

For I have Hope.

And on this night, there is much to be grateful for.

God has made himself man.

And man has made himself God.

May I bring this light forth so that darkness may not prevail.

In the name of the Father and Mother, the Lord and Lady and the Spirit that binds us.

For ever and ever.

Aa-men’

Blessings everyone! I’ve been away for work over the last couple of weeks. Every time that I take such an extended leave from my writing, it brings home the fact that it has become such a life-giving part of my life and that the interactions I get with all of you are worth a million!

My Samhain was quite different from the past few years. For the first time in a long time, I went to a public ritual with the rest of the Wiccan community. Up to now, my contact with the Pagan community was limited to Crescent Moon and a few offshoots. My spiritual circle extended to a few spirit-minded healers, shamans and psychics. But this was the first time that I attended a public Wiccan ritual that was not organized or run by students of Crescent Moon or its affiliate teachers. I had other plans for that evening, but something within yearned to celebrate in a purely Wiccan way. I was curious of how it would feel.

There were over one hundred people at this ritual, most of whom I did not know. I had met some of the organizing members at Gaia gathering in May. I have to lift my witch hat to these people who pulled an amazing feat. It is difficult enough to lead an open ritual with people who are not familiar with one another. They lived up to the challenge of a huge crowd, with people of different backgrounds, different levels of knowledge of the Craft, from the seasoned practitioners to the merely curious. It flowed seamlessly, they took the time to explain the proceedings at the beginning so that everyone would be on the same page and the ceremony was simply poignant.

I had been removed from the organized Pagan community for more than 5 years, while I lived up north. All this time, I spent writing and forging my own identity and practice. Coming back to Montreal and reconnecting with the Pagan world brought home a few things. First and foremost, I realized how varied the community was and how established. And those who adhere to Wicca as a religion really live it. Some have lived this way for decades, so that they are no longer just dabbler and explorers. They are Wiccan in all its expressions. Their rituals are organized, their wording shared. They share common songs and expressions. As the organizers explained before the ritual, the ritual was conducted in a pure Wiccan style. Having studied in an eclectic setting with a little bit of this and little bit of that, this was not something that I was used to. But it made me understand a little more some of the backlash that I got when the book came out. There is a purely Wiccan tradition and I have a tendency of forgetting that.

This being said, the ritual was beautiful. The symbolism and the songs brought me back to what I had looked for from the beginning: the raw connection to the earth cycles and the Goddess. We chanted about death and passing, we called our ancestors and asked for guidance for the coming year. So, I found there what I came to find. But at the same time, I looked around at the people gathered there (OK it was Samhain and everyone looks a little odd dressed up…), but I did not feel like these were MY people. There were a number of the usual suspects: the dark, the eccentric, the dramatic, the seekers, the curious, and for sure the priests and priestesses of a Craft that needs to be preserved. There were also some of the people that I was also used to in my initial circles. In a crowd of over one hundred, it is obvious that I could not talk to everyone and learn their stories. But I would have liked to do that, just to know how all these people had gotten to be in the same place that night.

As I looked over the crowd, it struck me that I have a Tradition of my own that may differ quite a bit from a purely Wiccan practice. Part of that is the eclectic background that we may share as Christian Pagans or Witches. Another part is that we have a Christian tradition that inspires the kind of liturgy that we may include in our rituals. This includes a certain attitude and way of attending that may differ from Wiccan practice.

Maybe we are our own tribe…

On this Samhain, may the ones you loved be with you and may the new year bless you with the inner fire of Spirit!

Blessed are thou, Lord of all Creation, for giving us the Mysteries,

That we are made in your Image, co-creators of all that is.

Blessed are thou, Holy Mother, from whom all blessings flow,

For bestowing upon us the greatest of Truths:

We are one, connected and undivided, ever flowing and never ending.

Most Holy Ones, I give you thanks for that which has been bestowed upon us through your kindness.

As the sun in its highest, you shed upon us your strength

Reminding us that it is indeed our own strength that you show us today.

As we behold your glorious orb today,

May we never forget the power that lives within us, power to move mountains, as you have taught us.

All blessings and honor to you, Lord and Lady

For yours are the kingdom, the power and the glory, now and forever.

Aa-men

Beltaine is a time to really get in touch with that inner power of fertility and virility. It dawns on me as I am writing this post, that as Christians, it probably is one of the powers we are the least familiar with. It is really by reconnecting with the Goddess (at least for me, as a woman) that I got in touch with that incredible source of power. It is a power deep in your womb that springs of blood and fire, and that consumes everything and yet, is the source of all life. It speaks of things that are forbidden, enticing, uncontrolled, primal… It speaks of throwing all inhibitions to the wind and letting the inner fire take hold of you. How hard has that become for all of us! Why is that so? I mean, there is no need to go on a sexual rampage to achieve this. You can just lose yourself in the one you love if you have found him or her. Or there are so many ways to release those inhibitions. Dance like no one is watching. Splatter paint uncontrollably on a canvas. Make mud cakes in the garden (make sure to get some in your hair!) Jump in the pool fully dressed. Any other ideas?

OK. I didn’t do any of those things. But now I really feel like it…

What I did do: I planted my herb garden with my kids. The moment was so magical that I drew a circle around it. My son was so eager and diligent in placing the soil in the pot and watering them, my daughter was trying to ride a bike and my husband was tending the bushes. I simply whispered to My Lady: ‘This is what I am planting.’

Then we had a massive pillow fight. And we went to the country to celebrate with my family. I let the kids run around the woods, not a care in the world about their clothes, and let them ‘feed’ the ants and blow bubbles. Nothing like kids to teach you a little excess.

Blessed Beltaine everyone!

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