Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Being a Mother is…

Being a Mother is…

…knowing that some tears are frustrating, while some can be
funny, and others mean business!

…knowing when to laugh with your child and when to cry.

…knowing that a little spit-up on your clothes doesn’t mean
baby is sharing.

…knowing that a gentle lullaby sung form the heart is the finest pacifier.

…knowing that Breast Milk is the ultimate comfort food.

…finding joy in baby’s accomplishments from holding his head up higher longer, to his giant toothless grin, to his first science fair project, and beyond.

…knowing you are doing the best you can as long as you are
showing your children the love, consideration, and affection they truly need.

…knowing that no material possession in the world can gain your child's love and respect. Instead, discipline, self-respect, dedication, and kindness does the trick!

…finding total peace and fulfillment as your baby sleeps on
your shoulder.

…savoring special moments with your child while sleeping, breathing, walking, learning, singing, dancing, laughing, and crying.

…taking the empathy you feel for your child and applying it
to others in your life.

…feeling a great sense of accomplishment when your child
thinks of others before herself.

…knowing that big miracles with great lessons come in small

Monday, December 28, 2009

The TOP 20 for 2009!! Awsome!!!

A friend of mine e-mailed me today to congratulate me on writing the #2 essay in the top 20 essays of 2009 on The Witches Voice!

What a WONDERFUL surprise!!!! 

What an honor! I am excited and humbled to know that my ramblings were read and enjoyed by so many Witches, Pagans, and Wiccans on the web. 

I don't write essays very often... but when I do, I try to touch on  things that are beneficial to all of us. It is my goal to inspire and empower those who have been oppressed or dismissed, and change the perceptions of those who might have negative views of those who are oppressed or dismissed. I hope I can write something in the future that will inspire, touch, and help, similar to this single article!

Thank you for taking time out of your day to read what I have to say!

Bright Blessings,
Leandra Witchwood

Friday, December 25, 2009

Lesson of the Labyrinth, Part 1

It is solved by walking…

A traditional Labyrinth Mantra

There are a great many ways of applying the Labyrinth as a tool in our lives. You only have to use your imagination and walk a Labyrinth.

Labyrinths are unique and gentle teachers. A Labyrinth will awaken your inner wisdom and allow you to see the things you might over look. Labyrinths encourage your individual ability to become a better and more balanced person.

Some would argue or question how this solid structure or pattern could be gentle and flexible teacher. One person may it as too rigid. Another may see it as a bunch of meaningless lines. The fact is no matter your first impression; you will certainly change your view once you walk a Labyrinth. Their lines and patterns work with us instead of against us. They open us up to message and inner knowledge we might ignore.

I have studied and used Labyrinths for almost 7 years now. I was first introduced to them in a ritual during a spiritual retreat. The Labyrinth was made of corn meal on the green grass. At first it seemed strange to walk such an odd pattern, but when I did I was changed. Everything I was holding on to and hold back was freed.

If you have not yet experienced a labyrinth walk, I strongly suggest you look for one in your area and give it a try; It will be an experience you will not soon forget.

Labyrinths are beneficial to people who find it hard to meditate by using traditional, sedentary methods. I have also found labyrinths to be an exceptional tool for ritual and spell work. You are limited only by your imagination.

I would like to share with you some information so when you find a labyrinth in your area and decide to walk it, you will be knowledgeable about your journey. I have structured the information in lesson groups so the info is easier to take in.

Lesson One

Learning to Walk a Labyrinth

To begin this lesson you need a Labyrinth. Here is where I think most people run into trouble. Labyrinths are not available at Wal-Mart or Target. However, I think this is what makes them so much better than something you can purchase from a chain store or in mass quantities. Most Labyrinths are built by communities, and created by hand. Personally, I make 8’x8’ canvas labyrinths for individuals to use in their homes.

You will have to do some searching to find a labyrinth you can use, but it is not hard… and if you can’t find one you can make one!

You can search for a Labyrinth and Labyrinth Facilitators on The World-Wide Labyrinth Locator,

OK! So once you find a Labyrinth, how do you walk it?

Simply, you place one foot in front of the other and go… But for those of you (like myself) who need a little more detail here is some info you can use one your journey.

Since this is a spiritual tool as well as a tool for healing, it is important that you respect the design. I always bring an offering to give to the Labyrinth after I exit. I also follow some simple etiquette.
1. Do not cross the lines, unless it is an emergency
2. If you are walking out and another person is walking in, step aside and allow them to pass you.
4. Leave your Cell Phone, and other electronic devises outside the Labyrinth. You will have no need for them here.
3. Be respectful to the design and others walking the Labyrinth

There are many methods to walking a Labyrinth. Some jog, skip, crawl, but most just walk at a slow at a steady pace. What ever you choose it is helpful to remember a few basics.

A Labyrinth has three basic stages, the beginning, center, and exit/end. I will go over each basic stage separately so you can identify them when you walk a labyrinth.

The important thing is to never walk a labyrinth expecting it to solve all of your problems immediately. The universe does not work this way. As always, you must put in effort if you expect any result.

The Beginning
As the name suggests this is where you begin. It is the opening of the labyrinth and the journey toward the center. You should have a focus as you walk if you have something to resolve or improve. This is where you identify your needs and desires. Some choose a mantra or chant to say as they walk. I find that this adds to the experience and encourages one to focus more deeply. Another simple and effective focus is your feet. Your gaze will naturally gravitate to your feet, as it does feel each step as you touch the ground.

If you have no specific subject, then simply walk.

The Center
I encourage all who walk a Labyrinth to spend a few moments in the center. I like to spend some time in prayer so I may speak directly with the God and Goddess about my focus. I take this time to ask for guidance. I may also ask for wisdom, prosperity, energy, etc… anything I need to further my progress.

While you are here stop a while and reflect on your purpose for being here. Take your meditation further by allowing yourself to sink deeper and allowing yourself to let go. If you must leave something behind, leave it. If you need to take something with you as you leave, ask for it. Pray… Meditate... Chant… Do what feels right.

The Exit/End
When you are ready to turn and exit the Labyrinth’s path, allow yourself to feel the sensations in your mind and body as you move. Don’t analyze them, discount them, or question them..

Some feel compelled to move quickly out of the labyrinth, encouraged by a sudden burst of energy. I have also seen people dance their way out as though they were overflowing with joy! Exist in the moment and live each step as it touches the ground.

When you exit the Labyrinth, remember to give your offering, leaving it just out side near the opening.

Labyrinth walks are usually solitary journeys. These journeys can take as little or as much time as you need depending on the size of the labyrinth. The important thing is not to rush. Take in the journey and the lessons piece by piece so you can properly understand what it is you receive.

I hope your journey into the Labyrinth is fulfilling and beneficial. If you have any questions please feel free to post them!

It is solved by walking…

Rev. Brandy Boswell

Thursday, December 24, 2009


This part of the lesson from a class I taught for the FireFly Academy more than a year ago. I always enjoy reading about and listening to other interpretations of the various Sabbats and Seasonal celebrations. I find it inspiring when people get creative, expressive, and allow the inner muse to emerge. I think this is why I enjoy this holiday season even though I do struggle with the clash of similar idealisms.

Alternate names and celebrations 
Counties, cultures, etc.  
   Yule – Europe  
   Christmas – Global  
   The Winter Solstice – Global  
   Saturnalia – Roman

    Common themes and traditions of Yule

    Common themes: A day to recognize the return of the Sun's warmth and light. Also marks the passing of the longest night of the year which is the balance and counter part of Litha/The Summer Solstice. In many traditions the birth of the Sun king is a significant symbol. This Sun King will grow and as he grows he will warm the earth, bring forth Spring, fertility, and bounty.

    This is the time of the year when we are encouraged to focus on charity, hearth, home, family, and friends. The tradition of giving is traced back to when villages would combine recourses, stores, and supplies so everyone could make it through the rest of the winter. This led to fellowship and prosperity for all who participated.

    Spiritual Focuses/themes: Hopefully you have rested your physical self and your spiritual self during what is thought to be the dark time of the year, from Samhain to Yule. After this period of rest many feel compelled to push spiritual goals and aspirations forward. To do this one must remove any baggage clinging to the soul. Resolving conflicts, forgiveness, humility, and charity are common and effective ways to renew and lighten your spirit.

    Common traditions: Decorating the home in greenery, pine needles, branches, berries, Holly, Mistletoe. Placing a fresh cut tree in the home and decorating with bright lights that were thought to help encourage the sun to rise and grow stronger.

    Other ways to celebrate: 
       Decorating a pine/evergreen tree  
       Staying up all night to welcome the sun as it rises  
       Having a feast style breakfast at sunrise or just after  
       Burning the Yule Log  
       Weaving/Knitting/Sewing/Crocheting Warm blankets for the home  
       Wreath Making  
       Sleigh Rides  
       Moon lit walks in the woods  
       Reading stories about the Fea, Santa, etc.

      Sights, Smells, Sounds… Experiencing this Sabbat with all the senses

      Experiencing any ritual or special occasion is best when you involve all you senses. This is why we love decorations and holiday meals. Decorations help us create an atmosphere that is welcoming and bright. Candle create a dime and warm setting where we can relax and feel at peace. The scent of Cinnamon, Apple, Citrus, Clove, Pumpkin, and Anise are classic fragrances that begin forth a nostalgic sensation. Think about your favorite drink or food, one you closely relate to this holiday season. The nostalgia from the tastes, sight, and smells are all you need to change your mood and outlook.

      Directional Association:

      North/Earth: Home, stability, and prosperity

      At this time we are focused on family and friends and making them feel welcomed. We attend parties and sometime host parties all to celebrate the season and the relationships we cherish. We are busy wishing everyone prosperity and luck as we enter a new season and year.

      East/Air: Intellect, creativity, and new beginnings

      Since we have more time to spend indoors it is a great opportunity to catch up on our reading list or even take some classes and learn something new. Those who have hobbies in crafting might find it easier to create. Others may take this time to plan as the new year approaches.


        Red: Strength, Energy, Health, Ambition, and Vigor

        Green: Healing/Health, Loyalty, Fertility, Success, Luck, Growth, Charity, Patients, and     

        Blue: Peace/Tranquility, Understanding, Truth, Devotion, Sincerity, Honor, Wisdom, Inner
        Knowing, and Sleep/Rest

        White: Purity, a clean slate, the snow, Spirituality

        Gold: The God, The Sun, Prosperity, Strength, Wealth, and Male Energy

        Silver: The Goddess, The Moon, Love, Gentleness, and Female Energy



      Other Common Symbols:

      Antlers/Deer/The Stage, Holly and other evergreens, Snow Flakes, Candles, Lamps, Male Deities like Santa Clause, and a new born male God…


      Music ad Lyric:  
      When the right music is played we are usually flooded with emotion and sometimes nostalgia. During this time of year the focus is on being happy and joyful. Our ancestors tried to raise their spirits so they can remain positive through the remaining cold months and this is a great custom to carry on. Play music that is nostalgic and inspiring. If you have some dance music you like, play it. If you like "Christmas" carols play them too. Although it may be more appropriate for you to stick with the ones that speak to you and your path rather than songs that are Christianized. However, you may also begin to realize that there are many similarities in our beliefs and the Christian beliefs and then you will be able to see past the song's surface.

      Poetry and Story Telling are also great elements to incorporate into your celebration. Two stories I like to share with my daughter and friends are "The Good Wife and the Silver Pine Cones." and "The Yule Fairies"

      Food and Drink:

      In all cultures food and drink are very important people together in a specific atmosphere.

      Foods: Honey, Cheese, Apples, Squash, Nuts, Grapes, Cabbage, Meats, Beans/Legumes, Plums, Pears, Potatoes, Root Vegetables. Anything hearty and earthly. Baked goods are also very big, so try your hand at pies, cakes, breads, casseroles, etc.

                  Spices and Herbs: Cinnamon, Anise, Nutmeg, Ginger, etc.

                  Drinks: Apple Cider, Mulled Cider, Hard Cider, Ale, Mead, Beer, Milk, and Wine.

      All Sabbats have a deeper meaning beyond the initial traditions and surface messages.

      It is at this time of year when we should be making ourselves ready to emerge from the darkness. The strengthening of the sun's light is a message to us to also strengthen our own inner light. It is time to begin our own return to the light.

      By this time we have spent 6 weeks in darkness and in many areas the cold weather depression compounds and in some cases consumes... some times its called the winter blues.

      It is with the return of light and warmth we can realize that depression and darkness is only a cycle and will not last if we choose to let it go.

      The message is find joy, let your self release the sense of hopelessness you may carry with you from time to time. Like the sun you will shine again and you are able to brighten the world in your own unique way!





      Ishtar (Babylonian)


      Frau Holde (German)


      Dagda (Irish)

      Lono (Hawiian)

      Chandra (Hindu)


      Some info about Mithras:

      Pre-Dates Christ

      Mythology of his birthday was spread all over Persia, Egypt and Asia. He was born to a virgin mother in a barn/manger.

      His birthday is known as the "Birthday of the Invincible Sun"

      He is also known as the Child God of all Gods

      Followers would continually pray for his return each Yule

      A simple ceremony. A celebration for everyone.

      This is a simple way to enjoy the holiday as you bring joy into your heart and mind, share some quality time with family and/or friends while recognizing the coming bounty and fertility

      You will need:

      • Candles: Red, White, and Green
      • Upbeat, Happy Dance or Holiday Music
      • Family and/or Friends
      • Cookie Dough or Ginger Bread Dough (Homemade or Refrigerated)
      • Flour and a rolling pin
      • Other supplies for making cookies (Icing, candy decorations, Special cookie cutters in the shape of the sun, deer, evergreen trees, Santa, etc.)
      • Directional Candles
      Gather your family and/or friends and make an evening of making cookies while enjoying the company of those you love. Place the directional candles in the quarters of your kitchen and invite your loved ones in. Have one or two people mix the dough, others roll it out and cut the shapes out, and the rest can bake them. When the cookies are baked and cooled everyone can try their hand at decorating them. This is a great time to share with your friends and give them blessings for the season.

      For a more adult style cookie use ginger bread cutters and make Ginger bread person anatomically correct to symbolize the coming fertility and celebrate sexuality. 

      Enjoy the season and allow the feelings of warmth, prosperity, and  peace be yours all year!

      Wednesday, December 23, 2009

      Now is the time…

      Those who follow my blog may have notice a trend in the recent poems I posted. This time of year for me is extremely annoying. I truly hate shopping, buying meaningless gifts for people I hardly know, and battling other shoppers for a spot in the isle. This is one of the reasons why I make all my holiday gifts.

      Anyway, No matter what faith you follow, peace, love, joy, charity, and simple decency is something we all appreciate. This time of year serves as a reminder of these important things. I always find it funny how it is these very things that seem to get tossed out people's car windows as they shop, and interact with one another.

      This time of year is meant for peace and joy not chaos and hassle. As I shopped for my families groceries today I was very aware at how rude people acted and how inconsiderate people are to one another. So as I shopped, I made a choice. I chose embody the true meaning of this season. I chose to smile at people as the approached. I chose to be happy no matter the number of times I was treated unfairly. I chose to take control of my thoughts and actions.

      After a while the effect really began to take hold. I felt great, despite the physical pain I felt in my hip and back. When I realized what I was doing for myself I naturally took the process further. I began to forgive and feel love and compassion for those who have wronged me in the past. My heart was light and my creativity burst forth. Yes, this is the true meaning of this season. I thought, "How selfish of me to be happy and forgive. YES! This is the very gift I should give myself. Happiness, inner freedom, and peace. Very selfish of me indeed!"

      Now is the time when we should practice the message of joy, forgiveness, charity, and fellowship.

      Now is the time when we should extend our hand to those who we have cast aside.

      Now is the time to forgive, love, and find peace.

      Many Blessings to you and yours this season! My wish for you this season is that you own your happiness and joy!

      I Choose Happiness

      I am happiness because I know sorrow.

      I am joyful because I know pain.

      I am peace because I know chaos.

      I am happy because I choose to be happy.

      I am joyous because I fill my day with joyful things.

      I am content because I contentment with all I have.

      I know happiness because once sorrow tied my hands,

      I know peace because once pain bound my feet,

      I know joy because once darkness consumed my thoughts.

      I choose to free myself from a prison where no lock restricts me.

      I choose to lie in the field of soft green grass and take in the sweet fragrance of flowers.

      I chose to take responsibility for my own happiness.

      I chose to take responsibility for my own joy, for no one else deserves the privileged of this responsibility.

      No one else can better know what makes me happy.

      May those who wish ill upon me be cured of this awful illness.

      May the curse spat out by jealous lips, lash back to awaken their owner.

      I choose to forgive you all who have turned away from me.

      I choose to forgive you who snatched up your friendship with haste and vengeance

      I choose to forgive you with the quick tongue and deceitful heart.

      I choose to forgive myself for allowing pain to enter into my life. 

      May all who seek peace find it.

      May all who seek love feel it.

      May all who seek joy and happiness, be joyful and happy.

      Leandra Witchwood


      Tuesday, December 22, 2009

      I Light This Candle for You…

      Tonight I light this candle for you…

      You who are broken and worn,

      May the light reach you and brighten you soul.

      Tonight I light this candle for you…

      You who are at war,

      May this light lighten your spirit and bring you home

      Tonight I light this candle for you…

      You who are never at fault,

      May you realize those you have left behind in your desperation to be right 100% of the time

      Tonight I light this candle for you…

      You who have too much pride to admit,

      May you be peacefully humbled and learn to bend

      Tonight I light this candle for you…

      You who are broken and learning to mend,

      May this light speed your progress and free your spirit

      Tonight I light this candle for you…

      You who sacrifice willingly

      May your labor be rewarded and grace lighten your load

      Tonight I light this candle for you…

      You who have spoken ill against another,

      May you know your connection to the greater good and be reminded of what matters most.

      Tonight I light this candle for you…

      You who are seeking a new way to live

      You who seek peace

      You who search for resolve

      You who realize that you are your own reality

      You who realize there is more to this life than what we are handed

      Tonight I light this candle for you…

      I pray you feel the heat within.

      I pray you see a vision of truth, a moment for clarity that will push you forward

      I pray you have peace in your heart

      I pray you offer forgiveness freely

      I pray you seek out those relationship soured, that you might mend them on this great hour.

      I light this candle for me that I might find this path shared.

      You by my side, as we walk together with acceptance and trust, peace and forgiveness.

      May we find understanding and we walk long and true.

      Blessed Solstice from me to you!

      Leandra Witchwood

      December 22, 2009

      Tuesday, December 15, 2009

      The Mural

      Paint a mural high on the wall, watch as the lines bleed and fade.
      Storms bursting with lightening and rain upon a restless sea.

      Looking hard and deep within to find the truth I seek.
      Looking hard to understand the deceit, they choose to speak.

      Paint a mural high on the wall, watch as the colors bleed and into gray.
      A meadow green and fey unseen, upon a sun lit day.
      Cool and crisp the air surrounds, gentle water washes over me.

      The song you play in my heart is filled with lies and fear.
      I turn to the brighter side, where I feel hope will reside,
      beyond my pain and tears.

      Looking hard to understand.
      Looking long and deep within to find the truth.
      Looking to find the truth, you are willing to stand.

      Thursday, December 10, 2009

      What is a Labyrinth

      Classical 7-Circuit Labyrinth

      What is a Labyrinth?
      The embodiment of Wisdom, Prosperity, Hope, Peace, Personal Power, Strength, Protection, and Growth.
      Or simply… The archetype for life.

      A labyrinth is sacred symbol, an ancient pattern designed for a variety of reasons. It is a tool to be used toward self-healing. One may walk a labyrinth to quiet the chatter in your head enabling the walker to meditate effectively. One may walk a labyrinth to pray, deal with a difficult decision, or heal. Labyrinths have been used for centuries in rights of passage and to commune with the Gods. There are countless uses for a labyrinth.

      A labyrinth is a geometric design that is usually portrayed in it circular form. The size of a labyrinth can range from one small enough to fit in the palm of your hand, commonly known as a finger labyrinth, to over 80 feet in diameter.

      Labyrinths… Mazes… They are all the same right?
      There are several styles and types of labyrinths out there and it is easy to mistake them for mazes. To add to the confusion many people misuse the word Labyrinth when they mean to say Maze. A simple distinction between the two is this…
      Labyrinths are usually a single path structure that have no dead-ends or tricks to confuse the participant. The purpose of a labyrinth is to allow the user to meditate on a goal or issue without concern for what direction he/she should take next. The single path journey is a reflective inner walk with one's self.

      Where did Labyrinths come from?
      Labyrinths are found all over the world and are estimated to be over 5,000 years old. It is thought that labyrinths originated in Crete. However, evidence shows that they may have originated with the Amazons in the form of a dance. AS this dance evolved and moved from one country to another people began to place the dance in stone. What emerged was the classical Labyrinth.

      What are Labyrinths used for?
      Labyrinths are used in celebration, meditation, rights of passage, stress relief, fun, resolve inner and external conflicts, personal healing, personal and spiritual growth... The list is long and the possibilities seem endless, you are only limited by your imagination.

      Many hospitals are now building labyrinths for patients and doctors to use when they need a few moments of peace and inner contemplation. Family members of the terminally ill as well as the terminally ill are finding clarity and acceptance as they routinely walk a labyrinth.

      Professional office buildings are using labyrinths to resolve conflicts and lessen anxiety before entering into intense meetings and discussions.

      All over the world people are building labyrinths in their backyards, churches, parks, and community centers so they may walk them when ever necessary.

      Each person who walks the path of the labyrinth is touched in a special way. No one is completely sure why or how labyrinths work, but it does. Labyrinths are effective and their use is highly encouraged.

      Stress relief, meditation, problem solving, healing…. Where could you use a labyrinth in your life?

      Hand-Made Personal Canvas Labyrinth created by Rev. Brandy Boswell

      Finding Our Self Esteem and Getting Unstuck on This Path

      by Leandra Witchwood

      I grew up in a household where my extra efforts where sometimes scoffed at and ridiculed. Growing up this way I naturally believed that my extra efforts were silly and pointless. Even now after years of soul searching, meditation, and empowering myself; I still struggle with my less than healthy self-esteem. I now realize that it was my family’s insecurities mix with my own ability to hang on to the past that helped make me insecure.

      I did not appreciate how common this issue is until I took a good look at our American culture. It happened while I was taking my most recent class on progressing in meditation. The instructor commented on how our American mind-set differs from the Tibetan mind-set. She revealed to me how our culture is based on “Your best is not good enough”, instead of “You did your best and that is good. Try it again tomorrow and you will do better.”

      I immediately found this enlightening and empowering. It helped me remember that our mindset is not the only mindset available. It was freeing to know that I have the option to change. We don’t always contemplate the messages we receive from family, media, friends, and community. Unfortunately, these messages seep deeply into our psyche doing damage that is tough to mend. Over the past several weeks, I have been contemplating this reality and how one can conquer this subtle oppression.

      Someone once told me this, “We are who we think, others think, we think, we are.” Some wisdoms are not always easy to grasp or express and this one defiantly has a “Whoa!” factor. To put it most simply, if we believe in ourselves and express our own inner strengths, others will pick up on this and it will become who we are to them. In turn they will treat is as confident and capable people thus encouraging our own confidence.

      Read more at the Magickal Buffet

      Friday, November 27, 2009

      Thanksgiving for Turkey Medicine

      I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving here in the US.

      I had a great day with my family and friends. Thanksgiving for me is a strange time of year, the same goes for Christmas. So much emphasis on the food; it is tough to eat healthfully while eating morally (for myself that is). I am hoping someone out there relates.

      “Lets talk Turkey”, I am vegetarian and I prefer to honor Turkey instead of devour him. In the days leading up to Turkey Day, I listen to people talk about their desire to “eat some turkey”! I listen respectfully yet I don’t share their enthusiasm. Tearing into the carcass of an over sized bird that has been bred to weight more than nature ever intended is not appealing to me.

      I have a saying I came up with about 3 years ago, “I choose to indulge in the fruits of the harvest, instead of flesh.” I use this saying whenever asked why or how I could not eat Turkey on Thanksgiving. I am used to the way people look at me like. Its like I grew a second and third head.

      All the hype about eating meat, makes the vegetarian less than excited about the holiday meal. Honestly, I prefer a nice roasted vegetable platter or even a Tofurky compared to the traditional holiday meal. Meat eaters may never understand, but HEY, that’s okay!

      I am vegetarian for several reasons… One being health, another being environmental, but mostly because of my own spiritual beliefs. The path I have chosen encourages me to look at things as a whole and look at my place within that whole. When I do this, I realize that my actions have a ripple effect both positive and negative. I also realize that I have the ability to change the quality of my ripple and how I touch the earth. This is one spiritual law I follow. Becoming vegetarian is one way I reduce a potentially negative ripple.

      If you have been following my ramblings, you probably noticed that I have an affinity for animals along with the lessons they have to teach us. I view animals as companions, guides, spiritual mentors, teachers, and yes even equals. In some cases, I even feel that animals are our superiors, but I will save for another thought.

      I love giving thanks for all I have. Having a day dedicated to giving thanks is important. So many people give thanks to the Turkey because he/she has taken its place on the dinner table thusly making him into the Thanksgiving icon. I love that we recognize the need to thank Mr. Tom Turkey for his sacrifice, but Tom has more to offer. If we take a look at what Turkey has to teach us, we can be thankful for much more.

      Turkey Medicine

      Spiritual and Cardinal Associations:
      Give-away, The Ultimate Sacrifice, Shared Blessings, and Harvest

      Moon Phase: Waning Moon

      Deity:   Cronus, Kronos or Cronos
      Modron ro Morgon La Fey
      Medinet Maadi
      Ops… and other deities related to the harvest, bounty, and sacrifice.

      Directional Earth and North

      Time of Year: Autumn

      Turkeys are members of the Chicken family. Wild turkeys eat a diet of nuts, including acorns and are very adaptable and resourceful. Turkeys prefer wooded areas where they can hide and forage. Domestic turkeys are not able to fly but wild turkeys can fly up to 50 miles per hour once they get started. The male turkey has a bright red fleshy wattle that grows from their forehead and dangles on the side of their beak. Many view the wattle as a symbol for the third eye and inner sight.

      Perhaps the reason we have chosen Turkey as the bird of Thanksgiving is because many Native Americans viewed Turkey as “Give-Away Eagle” or “Earth Eagle”. Mayan and Aztec tribes raised Turkeys for sustenance and survival. Their entire body was used from feather to bone. Turkey also has a very important role in Native mythology. In many stories, Turkey plays a large role in creating the Earth and helping the first humans become nourished and established.

      In many native tribes, a ritual is/was performed called a Give-Away Ceremony. Within this ceremony, people would gladly give away their personal treasures. This practice is sometimes hard to comprehend because it is contrary to our Western Cultural mindset.  We tend to feel we should horde all we have for as long as we can. You may be familiar with the phrase, “He who dies with the most toys, WINS!” Turkey played a vital role in these ceremonies, as he was the symbol of Give-Away. Through the journey of Give-Away Turkey plays a large role as symbol, guide, and mentor.

      In these cultures, it is not the person with most toys who wins; instead, it is the whole society/tribe who wins. The tribe benefits because of the individual’s sacrifice and selfless nature. From the beginning, tribe members are taught to help one another and to maintain balance for the betterment of the whole. The person who gives away the most achieves respect from the tribe as well as balance for the tribe. Those who horde possessions or don’t give freely are thought to be selfish and greedy. The old are wise and light because they do not have needless possessions weighing them down or distracting them from true community. Turkey’s lesson is to teach us how to give freely.

      Those who naturally have a giving nature, tend to have Turkey medicine somewhere in their life. I have read cards for many people who are giving by nature and I have pulled Turkey for almost all of them.

      People with Turkey medicine aspire to help others. They tend to volunteer in soup kitchens, shelters, rescues, many become clergy, and so on. The important thing to remember about those with Turkey medicine is that they give freely and without the need for payment, acknowledgement, reward, or much of anything in return. Some well know people I would guess have Turkey Medicine are Mother Teresa, Mahatma Gandhi, Jane Goodall, and so on. These are people who give/gave beyond monetary donation or material possession. They give/gave of their heart and soul for the greater good. Their offering is continual peace, wisdom, kindness, and hope.

      Turkey teaches us to give freely, truly, and completely without strings, conditions, or exceptions. Turkey is gentle, caring, and knows that the sacrifice of today will lead to a better tomorrow. This is the reason Turkey has made its way to your dinner table as you celebrate the season.

      Next time you sit down to your turkey meal, take a moment to remember the love and offering of Turkey. Take a moment to truly thank Turkey for its sacrifice and sustenance. Perhaps you will take the lesson Turkey offers further and you will find simple ways to live your life through sacrifice, peace, and offering.

      Sunday, November 15, 2009

      I Heard a Voice

      When will sleep awaken me?

      As listen to the pounding of my heart, I hear a voice.

      She is calling to me faint and distant. I struggle to hear, Her words are not clear.

      Swallowed by a dark pool in my soul the White Lady fights to break free.

      Darkness looms as her white skin is lost and her hair covers her face.

      The unseen force pushes her lower until she is consumed.

      Strength is lost and bounty is drowned. Light is snuffed and hope goes missing.

      When will the struggle make me strong? When will darkness release its bonds.

      The dark pool rushes to my eyes and am broken in more places. Healing is but a dream, daggling in front of my eyes, always out of reach.

      It has to get better. The light must shine again. Things have to cycle back to balance and happiness.

      Thursday, November 12, 2009

      Spiritual Transformation

      Spiritual Transformation

      Author: Leandra Witchwood
      Posted: November 8th. 2009
      Times Viewed: 463

      We live in a very tense society. We are pulled apart... and we all need to learn how to pull ourselves together... I think that at least part of the answer lies in solitude.
      ~Helen Hayes

      To become spiritual begins we must experience stages of transformation. Some of these experiences are short and fast, while others seem to take forever. More often than not, spiritual transformations are painful and difficult. Nevertheless, these stages are necessary for achieving our ultimate goal in becoming spiritual beings on this plain and the next.

      My most recent transformation began about two years ago and is nowhere near an end! I do admit some days change is hard to bear and I wish it would hurry the heck up, but then there are days when it all makes perfect sense and I don’t mind the lag.

      It all started with a standard Medicine card reading. The intent is to focus my efforts in the right direction for the day or week depending on the situation and project. I could feel myself becoming unbalanced and disoriented on my path and felt a strong need for some clarity.

      I know many of us who specialize in divination do this kind reading for others and ourselves all the time. Usually they are basic, the person in question draws a couple of helpful cards, and we are on our way. I honestly thought that this would be one of those simple readings. As the universe would reveal, I was very wrong.

      I remember it clearly; I was sitting at my usual spot in the park over looking the Susquehanna River during my lunch hour, when I pulled a very distinct arrangement of cards. The spread I was doing was intended to show me how to achieve balance through Father Sun and Mother Earth (above and below) . The shock came to me as I revealed my cards. Instead of balance, they spoke specifically of change, and chaos.

      First, I pulled Dragon Fly. On the surface Dragon Fly teaches us about Illusion. The story of Dragon Fly talks about how he was once a very powerful Dragon who was tricked by Coyote into the form we know today. When we look at Dragon Fly, we see the Magick bottle up within Dragon Fly through the iridescent shimmer of Dragon Fly’s wings.

      Knowing this we also consider Dragon Fly to be a symbol of locked up potential. When we see Dragon Fly in a spread, it tends to mean that the person in question is not living up to his/her true greatness/potential. This blockage is usually evident through some sort of illusion the person places in his/her life.

      Dragon Fly is also a symbol for change over time. It takes about 2 years for many Species of Dragon Fly to transform from an egg to an adult Dragon Fly. Therefore, as a reader I recognize that Dragon Fly is telling me that I will be entering into a 2 year transformation. Dragon Fly is also one of the few creatures equally associated with Air and Water.

      For me, this card fell in the Mother Earth position. This position teaches us to receive the goodness Mother Earth has to offer through time and patience. This energy is of the Female trinity; Maiden, Mother, and Crone. This ever-changing female energy opens us up to creativity and psychic pathways.

      Therefore, from the start of this reading I am told that slow change is coming two fold. I am also told that all seeds require time to germinate and need nurturing before they can grow into their true potential, again two fold.

      The next card I pulled is for the Father Sky position. This is of Male energy and Warrior Energy. In this position, we are taught lessons of how to heal, how to move forward, and how to look at things in the material world. This energy is faster and plays a distinct contrast to female energy, which is slower and less analytical.

      As I turned my second card to face me, I was dumfounded to see Frog. I was not sure what to make of this spread. I even looked up at my favorite tree for some clarity, but only found the words “accept it” instead.

      I thought to myself, “Did I not shuffle properly? There is no way both of these cards could end up next to each other in this spread. However, there they were, and their message was clear.

      If you have not guessed, Frog is another symbol for transformation. Frog’s association is with Earth and Water, which is only one of its many links to Dragon Fly. Like Dragon Fly frogs goes through a transformation, but only faster.

      I sat back and knew that I needed to expect some serious changes. I knew that at least the next two years would be hard. Change is not always easy and lets face it we humans are not very welcoming of change, especially when the change promises to be BIG! Nevertheless, I was glad to have the warning.

      I have moved past the two-year mark of this foretold transformation. I look back and see that so many things have happened. I was laid off from my high paying desk job, began working in the theater as a seamstress, started a business, ended the business, had a baby, developed some really great friendships, and then lost them.

      So now, I am here… Where exactly is “here”? I am not sure yet. I know the journey is not over and there are more big changes coming. What I do know is that I have transformed.

      What mattered to me before seems superficial. Having a high paying desk job that allows me to buy the latest and greatest is no longer a priority. Instead, I am happy working a low pay job that allows me to be with my family.

      Instead of having, a bunch of friendships that are shallow and dare I say it… fake. I now focus on friendships that are meaningful, fulfilling, and pure.

      I have to admit that through out these past couple of years I have taken some hard hits, so much that I have almost completely moved myself from my local Pagan Community. I have even shed myself of most Pagan friendships. Through it all, I experienced some severe depression, anxiety, and remorse over the people and things I lost.

      Often I found myself alone to wallow in my self-pity, but it is through this solitude I found my strength and myself. Although this journey has been tough, I am walking forward with so much more than I had before. I have learned to listen to my inner voice more closely, which has drastically improved my empathic abilities. I am now more skilled in reading my Medicine cards, especially for others.

      I am spending more time worrying about the Earth and my family, rather than worrying about being included in the next big ritual or concert. I have discovered the true character of those who do a very good job of pretending. More importantly, I have discovered my own true character, which surprisingly enough has not changed much. Instead, I have raised my standards.

      I am spending more time teaching true seekers who want to learn and grow. I have shed the need to look “good” in the eyes of others and I am now starting to look good to myself. I focus less on the superficial and more on the bigger picture.

      Now, I find solitude valuable. I am no longer afraid to be within myself as I find peace and enlightenment.

      As much as change stresses us out, it is necessary. If I learn nothing from all I have gained and lost, I at least know that I have not yet reached my full potential and that I have the opportunity to keep going. When I was in the deepest darkest depression morning all I had lost, one thing pulled me through; I always have the opportunity to stand up and move forward.

      Through pain, we know happiness and through self-discovery, we evolve. When faced with losing it all we have a choice to make. Do we deviate and weaken on our spiritual path or do we rise above to become our true potential?

      In every event and through every trial we have a choice. Everyday, we are empowered to make that choice.

      Article posted on WitchVox 11-8-09

      Thursday, November 5, 2009

      Vanishing in the Wind

      When there is nowhere to turn and peace is lost…

      When the dark water closes in and I can no longer breathe…

      Where can I turn to right the wrong I know nothing about?

      How can I lift the veil that conceals my sight?

      How can I remove the blame that is unfairly upon me?

      Pain has my heart… Sorrow fills my soul…

      When it all rips me to pieces… I feel lost…

      I stop to ask directions and backs are turned. I am still lost.

      The road continues ahead with no light, no destination in sight.

      There is no place to rest and feel at peace. That place is now lost to me…

      Vanishing in the wind.

      by: Leandra Witchwood
      Original post: 11-5-08

      Sunday, November 1, 2009

      OMG! She's a FAT Priestess!

      The sun was low in the sky as we gathered around the fire circle. Many of us were strangers but we came together in the woods to celebrate Mabon as a community. The circle was already laid out and lit with large candles glowing in the dim light of sunset. Each quarter had its own altar. North was decorated in brown, East in pink, South in red, and West in blue. The center altar was large with black white and red cloth draping down onto the grass. A large multi-tiered candle holder was center and lit with several white candles On either side sat statues of the God and Goddess nestled in several colorful flowers. The ground in front of the altar was heavily decorated with loaves of bread, flowers, and branches.

      We were lead into a semi-circle around the fire by one of the apprentices. We had not yet seen the priestess so far everything was being run by her apprentices. As the chanting began and became harmonious, we heard a stunning voice come from the eastern side of the circle. She sang in harmony with our chant. We chanted, “Isis, Astarte, Diana, Hecate, Demeter, Kali…” She accompanied us with powerful and beautiful voice singing, “Sacred Mother I hear you calling, Sacred Mother I hear your song...”

      The power of this song and chant was amazing. I was blown away! It was creative, powerful, and magnificent. As the Priestess entered the circle, the apprentices slowed the chanting until it there was silence. As the Apprentices and Priestess went to the altar to begin the next stage of the ritual, I over heard the person standing next to me say, “OMG! She’s fat! OH MY GOD!.”

      My jaw dropped! One, I could not believe I just heard what I heard. Secondly, I thought she was gorgeous. She wore a flowing blue gown with a black corset. I did not see her has being fat at all. She was not skinny, but she was in no way appalling or deserving of that comment. It became obvious to me that the people in that ritual were expecting her to be thin because she was experienced and knowledgeable. In their minds, people who have creditability are those with a thin figure.

      Sadly, we seem to live in a nation where our size dictates how people react to us and our abilities. Sure, our nation has a serious obesity epidemic, but I think our perceptions of this issue are jaded. We are a nation that sends mixed message to one another. At the grocery store, we are bombarded with advertisements for packaged processed junk that fits nicely into a tight budget. Then, at the check out counter, we see ads and magazine articles telling us how to lose 20lbs in 10 days!

      I honestly believe that the way we view one another and ourselves seriously affects our ability to be spiritual people and proficient in Magickal arts. If we are hung up on looks rather than talent, knowledge, and experience, we are missing the big picture. When we think someone’s abilities is contingent on their pant size we have some serious issues to over come.

      Now, don’t get me wrong. I completely believe that to become a spiritual person you MUST take care of yourself. I also believe that taking care of yourself means you need to exercise, eat whole foods, drink alcohol moderately, no smoking, and keep a positive image about yourself.

      Over the years, I have become mildly obsessed with nutrition and exercise. If you want to know the nutritional value of a food, I probably know it. I go to the gym at least 3 times a week and when I am not at the gym I get plenty of exercise walking the dog, working in my yard, hiking, and running after my two kids. My husband will be the first to say that I have trouble sitting still. He is surprised I do it long enough to nurse our son.

      As I sit here at this moment writing this article, I am eating a spinach salad with carrots, tomatoes, red onion, and light dressing. This morning, I went to the gym and did my routine with my trainer for an hour and a half. Later I plan on digging up a large pant bed in my yard. According to my life style and doctor, I am very healthy. BUT! According to the media and medical community, I am not!

      What I hear most about are the potential risks. The potential risks are not real if you do what you can to prevent them. With all the attention obesity and the potential risks receive in the media it seems that every single over weigh or obese person should be falling over dead at any moment. If the potential risk were really that acute we would be stepping over bodies as we walk down the street.

      According to the medical community and media I should be falling down gasping for air and suffering a heart attack right now! Instead, I am eager to dig up deeply rooted plants in my garden after spending my morning at the gym. Something somewhere is a miss.

      The fact is the Media is very good at using scare tactics to get our attention. If they didn’t use shocking tactics they would not stand out to catch our attention. The issue with these tactics is that it colors how we see people. This coloring dehumanizes our neighbors and dulls our view of what is acceptable and kind. Something that is not really that bad is made to seem like it is unbearably horrible, and we are encouraged to form a negative perception of the issue or person.

      The reason people don’t get out there and live life if because they are scared of what consequences are before them. Years ago I was afraid to lead public ritual because I over heard what was said about the priestess. It was horrible and demeaning. Therefore, I began living in ways that might avoid encounters subject to un-necessary ridicule. No one needs the obvious pointed out at them. It was not until I got out and lead my first public ritual did I realize it wasn’t about me being inadequate.

      I discovered that I am a good leader despite my weight and size. My abilities and knowledge have nothing to do with my size and weight. I know I am experienced and competent. In the face of potential ridicule and false judgments, I found that my inner power is my own. My inner power does not come from the people standing the circle with me. It does not come from my dress size or weight. My inner power comes from how I see myself. My inner power comes from the knowledge I have and the grace I give myself.

      Over the years I have learned to love who I am, eat healthfully, and exercise daily. I have learned that these things make me healthy and confident. When I feel healthy and confident my Magick and spirituality are a flame to behold.

      It is time to live each day as though it were your last. Get up and move. Get up and dance. Get up and enjoy the sunshine. Go outside and lay in the shade of a beautiful tree. Bring a picnic and enjoy the day, everyday!

      My inspiration for this article came from Joy Nash. She is openly 224lbs and a size 18! She is speaking out for all of us who struggle with the “You must be thin” stigma we encounter everyday. Her videos are available on and they are very entertaining.

      If you take nothing away from this article, please remember this: Many obese and over weigh people are very active and very health. Many obese people are not firmly planted on the couch stuffing their faces with junk. They are beautiful and deserving of respect and dignity.

      One should never judge someone’s abilities by the size of their clothing. Spirituality and Magick don’t come in specific pant or dress sizes, they are all sizes to fit all.

      Finally, it is not your weight that prevents you from doing what you want and enjoying life, it is your attitude.

      Leandra Witchwood

      Saturday, October 31, 2009

      Lessons of Owl, Owl Medicine

      Lessons of Owl

      Owl is a mysterious creature who is friends with the night and flies on silent wings. Her presence is rarely noticed unless you know where to look. Her breeds and calls are numerous, and her lessons are never easy. Owl sees what we want to remain hidden. Owl is honest and sees directly into our heart and soul.

      Although we have become most familiar with her symbolism of being wise, there is more to her. In many Native American tribes, Owl is the wise one, the feared one, and the honest one. Some tribes see Owl as a symbol of danger and is deeply feared. They consider her a bringer of dark or black magick because she is a creature of the night and her ability to be around you with out you ever knowing. Owl is a silent presence always observing and is rarely seen. Some even see Owl as a “demon” or as a companion of those who practice Magick of ill will. In some cultures, it is said that if you see an Owl a horrible curse was coming your way.

      However, most tribes adore Owl. They see her as a cunning and silent observer who sees all. She perches in the trees looking down to notice the smallest detail. Owl moves from tree to tree never making a sound continuing to observe and learn. When you least expect it she will call to you and startle you, immediately you realize your actions, deceptions, and movements are watched very closely. For those who try desperately to keep their dishonesty hidden this is an uneasy realization.

      In the tribes and cultures where Owl is most beloved, she has two faces. She is the Wise One. This is the more accepting face of Owl, one we have chosen to associate closely with Owl.

      Her second face is the True Seer. She is the one who sees clearly through to even the most concealed deception. She sees the tricks we play on ourselves and others. She sees our manipulations and does not hesitate to call us out on them. She tells no lie and she does not look away. It is for this reason Owl people are both loved and feared.

      Those processing Owl Medicine are strong with True Seer energy, because of this they are often pushed out of groups within society. Many find themselves feeling very uncomfortable around people who have Owl Medicine although they may not know why. The reason for their discomfort is simple… Owl reveals one’s deceptions and when Owl Medicine is at work deceptions are exposed. There is rarely a middle ground with Owl people, unless Owl chooses to keep her distance or keeps the knowledge of said deceptions silent. Keeping silent is very difficult for Owl as it is her duty to reveal deception.

      When we don’t understand Owl Medicine we find Owl’s honestly very unsettling. As many of us struggle with the truth and lies we hide within, Owl sees them clearly. Owl brings these deceptions forward and looks within us with giant piercing eyes. She looks into the depths of people and sees them for who they are deep down. This ability makes people very uneasy especially when they are not ready to face their own inner demons. When Owl is asked to reveal something she does it with naked honesty. When she is asked to call out the truth she does so even when the requestor is not prepared for the truth. Always prepare yourself if you ask for the truth from Owl.

      Owl’s comfort with pointing out the areas where we hide and stumble is alarming. This ability is not exclusive to those around her. Owl also sees her own inner demons and regularly faces them. In some cases, it is hard for Owl to remember that others do not contain her unique gift of acceptance and her willingness to face her inner demons.

      Owl does not mean to bring fear to others, her true intention is to bring peace within. She is practicing her gift as she best knows how in hopes that you will open your heart and mind to accept your growth potential. Her goal is to make these areas known so one can work on strengthening one’s character.

      Owl people are not usually cruel people, they are genuinely compassionate, and they care deeply for those she reads. If Owl chooses to keep her distance from someone it is wise to follow her. She most likely sees something within that person that is disturbing and is not likely to change. She may not be able to tell you exactly what it is that repels her, but in time, you will see it revealed.

      Because Owl prefers the cover of darkness and the camouflage of trees, her Lunar symbol is the Dark Moon and Full Moon. In some traditions, the dark of the moon is when Magick is most powerful. Some see it as being the time for “Dark” or “Black” Magick, while others (like Owl People) see it as being a time for Inner Magick. The Magick that is most difficult to reach because it requires you to conquer the darkest and deepest inner places of your heart and soul. This Magick comes from years of meditation, stillness, balance, and a full understanding of self. This Magick is only accessible when the user is completely able to let go and achieve true balance. To some surprise this ability does not come naturally to Owl people in their current corporeal form. Only through time, practice, patience, and mistakes can one achieve the balance necessary to perform Owl Magick.

      If you encounter someone who seems to possess Owl Medicine, remember to be aware of why you might feel uncomfortable in his or her presence. Remember be careful in asking Owl to reveal what she knows, you may not be prepared. If you open your heart and mind, Owl has a great many lessons to teach.

      Successful Spellwork

      Successful Spellwork

      Lately some of my students have been asking me questions about Magick. Magick is a great subject because it is so personal and yet so universal. Several people can have the same intent and go about achieving it in very different ways, proving that there is no one right way to do things. The variety is stunning and holds special interest to me.

      I had a one student ask me a question; I'm sure runs through everyone's head when it comes to using Magick. Her question to me was, "What makes Magick work and why is it effective for some but not others?"

      In my experience, several factors must work in your favor for a spell to be successful. This list of factors varies with each spell and each person, so getting things right is very important and tricky. I think this is where most of us get confused and deterred. The elements we need to work in our favor are not always within our control.

      As many of you know a spell is commonly compared to a prayer, yet intensified. There are several elements to consider, like timing, tools, specific intent, location, etc. In addition, there are plenty of "don'ts" we are taught when it comes to spell casting. Who wouldn't find the task a little daunting? I know I did at first.

      I learned that if I follow some simple guides I tend to have great success with spells. Here is a list of things I have found help successfully create and cast spells. I am sharing this with my friends hoping that you can apply these ideals to make your own practice a little more effective.

      1. Will. Keep in mind, this is not the same thing as intent. I have learned that I must have a specific desire that drives me to plan and execute a spell. This isn't as simple as a general need, but strong desire that drives me to work and focus. It needs to be clear and obtainable...

      2.Talent and Skill. Some people have a lot of natural talent and some have to work at Magick a little harder. Others have a little of both talent and skill and seem to have no trouble with Magick. It doesn't matter if you have a little or a lot, just try your best, develop your skills, use your natural talents, and you will be amazed...

      3. Patience. Some times we need things right away, but many times what we think is urgent, can wait a little while longer. When we are patient with Magick and ourselves, we can achieve things on a grand scale. You could be going without for many reasons. Maybe there is a lesson you need to learn or you are undermining your own needs and desires. Keep in mind that real life is not like Bewitched, we can't crinkle our noses and poof we have a basket of apples appear. Sometimes it takes years for your intention to become reality. Maybe your prosperity you are working on now will manifest later when it is a better time. Relax and let things happen, as they need to happen. Plus if you are following a spiritual path there may be certain expectations placed on you in connection to obtaining your need/want.

      4. Wiggle Room. Give your energy room to adjust, as it needs. When we allow it to self adjust we allow it to work in the best possible way for our own benefit. Give your energy freedom and room to work. Keeping it contained and too tightly controlled is no way to get what you want and need. Perhaps you think your Magick needs to go right but in fact it should go left in order to be productive and successful in outcome.

      5. Trust. This is HUGE! Trust in the energy you call upon as well as your own. If you doubt it, scoff at it, second-guess it, etc., you deplete yourself and the energy. I think the consequences are obvious.

      6. Confidence. This next item also goes hand in hand with trust. You must have confidence in the energy you conjure as well as yourself. If you cannot believe that you and the universe have the ability to move and change things, you will get nowhere. Be confident about your work and abilities, and be wary of arrogance. Also feel and know that you are worthy of obtaining what ever it is you conjure.

      7. Intent. Clear intent is essential most of the time. Sometimes we don't know exactly what we need and that is when we leave it in the hands of a greater power, (which is when spell work is more like praying). Magick is not necessarily passive. Magick is usually direct, after all it needs a place to go. Know what you want. State your intentions as clearly as possible. If you intend to come into a large sum of money by winning the lottery then say so. Just a warning… be careful what you wish for… You might get it.

      8. Attitude, be positive. A positive attitude is everything. If you are continually negative about your situation, stop it! This is something we all struggle with from time to time. When I find myself down in the dumps, I change my attitude fast and decide to make it a happier day. Much of how things happen to us and what happens to use depends on how we look at things and how we react re-act.

      9. Organization, get yourself organized. Organize your thoughts. Organize your tools/materials. (If you need them) Organize the space where you plan to work. Write your spell out and list the things you will do first, second, third, and so on. Also, make sure your space and tools are clean. When you have it all together you can focus and therefore making your spell more effective.

      10. Personalization. Make the spell YOURS! Sure you can get ideas from others, why not! Just don't rely on the work of others (which usually is tailored to that other person's needs) to work specifically for you. Yes, in some cases it can happen, but not all the time. Make the energy yours, make the intent yours, make the spell yours! Own the energy and live completely in the moment you create.

      11. Space. Being cramped or in a place that is too open can be distracting and can hinder your progress. Also, keep in mind other factors of the space, like the temperature of and noise factors. You want to keep your focus.

      12. No after thought. When you are done with the spell and you release the energy, forget it! Clean up your workspace and tools, refrain from picking your work apart, analyzing your techniques, questioning the effectiveness, etc. Just let it go. If hours or days later you find yourself thinking about the spell and thinking about it in detail, distract yourself and find something else to think about or do. When we continually think about the energy we send out we end up calling it back to us and taking it away from your goal, thus depleting it of the strength you gave it in the first place.

      13.Action outside the spell. Look at your situation before you plan your spell. I like to use "money" as an example when it comes to spell work because we can all relate. If you are sitting down to plan and conduct a spell that will attract more money to your life it is always a great idea to look at why you are low on funds to start.

      Could you budget a little better? Do you spend money on needless things or things that are not sustainable? Do you need a budget to organize your spending? Perhaps you could just use some discipline. Once you look at why you have no money explore and decide on a plan of action that will help you keep the money you bring in. There is no use in doing a spell that will bring you more money if you can't keep it and use it wisely. Take time to identify the things you can do to improve your situation. Then after you cast your spell put these things into action. If you found that you need to follow a budget to control your spending, then create a budget and stick to it. You can even add an element into your spell that will help you establish discipline in sticking to your budget. The point is Magick doesn't and cannot work if you will not help it and allow it to work.

      14. Practice makes perfect. Don't expect that because you did one spell successfully that you are a pro. Keep up the good work by doing spells as often as your personal energy allows. Perfect your techniques and skills through repetition. You can do simple spells for your friends/family (with permission of course), for your dog, your cat, yourself, etc. Also, give yourself variety by trying different forms and techniques. If you are good at Candle Magick, try Color Magick or elemental Magick next… Variety keeps you fresh and inspired.

      The list above, for me, matters in all Spellwork. Of course, there are other things we can add to the list, but I think this is fairly complete. I found that no matter the day, phase of the moon, or the position of the planets I can execute a successful spell by following this guide. Sometimes all the elements fall into place on their own and other times I have to work at them a little more. It all depends on the situation.

      Friday, October 30, 2009

      The Brightest Flame

      The scent of Cinnamon on the candle awakens my senses

      I run my fingers along the Tengwar carved into the wax.

      It reminds me of my intent and stirs my soul

      Red scales and wings surround me

      Something is coming. It speaks to me in my dreams.

      Protection, Strength, Energy, and Resolution are mine

      So Mote It Be!

      Monday, October 26, 2009

      In Hope of Understanding

      What I expect of you is nothing more than for you to remain true to your heart and dreams.

      What I dream for you is for you to bathe in strength and beauty. What I dream for you is that you find your place as I find mine.

      Emotions on the tide are made into storms out at sea. We toss and turn while our true intentions are lost and our desires endlessly burn.

      Words are lost when spoken in anger and intent is misunderstood. We close our minds to the possibilities and lose the things we hold dear to our hearts. Honesty is my strength and my weakness. It is my blessing and my curse, as I am sure you have found true. I will be nothing but honest with you, that is my calling, what else can I do?

      The fog of loss and confusion makes it hard to take. All we can do is improve as we recognize what makes us blind… In hope that from insanity we shall awake.

      I see in you a light, brighter than most. A light that is filled with strength and hope. A light that is slowly being put away.

      The constants remain, my love for you… my dream for you... my hope for you. Let your light shine from within and not weakened or dimmed.

      Sometimes the one who banishes our light is within and we must seek to banish this limiting being before forgiveness can begin. Many call it ego. I have to agree. To find it deep we must go. Into place we‘d rather not know.

      From this being, I have spent a long time learning how to break free. It is hard to let go. It is sneaky and friendly. It is sly and speaks to us the words we want to hear. It is hard to let go.

      Beware this is not our only challenge. There are others who will help this limiting presence breed, rather than let your true self flourish and grow. That want us to conform to their own inner greed.

      What I expect of you is nothing more than for you to remain true to your heart and dreams. I still care about you, no matter what challenges we go through.

      Life is tricky and even more are the relationships within… but when I see you shine it is then I must not resist my own inner calling. Yes I must, give in. I see your light clear and true, but a lethal haze is rolling in, what else can I do?

      I have no choice but to set aside my assumptions and truths I hold inside. After all we are no more than humans. People who try to find the answers… but fail as we are caught up in the emotion and drama created within. Stillness is a clear window to the soul this is where healing will begin.

      Honesty is something we cannot deny. Knowing this, I choose to grow beyond the assumptions that loudly cry. I find peace for myself and hope you will find it too. Stillness brings to me rapture and intensity.

      To find understanding between me and you, reaching out is all I can do.

      You are my friend no matter what challenges we go through and YES I still care about you.