Monday, January 18, 2010

The Magick of Negativity, Perhaps there is a lesson to learn

-Leandra Witchwood

January 18, 2010

We stood with our backs to the fire, each of us holding a mirror out to the forest. The fire was warm on my back and everything was dark except for the fire light flickering on the surrounding trees. We gathered on this night to banish an influence we perceived to be a threat. We were convinced that the illness creeping upon us was from an outside source and was determined to tear us apart. As we held our mirrors out to the night we chanted and willed away the negativity and those who would carry illness to our group.

    Our ritual lasted long into the night. Each of us took our turn voicing the illness we sought to banish. As the time wore down so did the candles and fire. When we finished the light was very dim. We sat around what remained of the fire talking and sipping wine in our usual pleasant way.

I hoped that after this ritual I would feel a weight lift from me, but instead something remained. I could still feel a certain darkness looming over me but I did not have the foresight to know the real issue. Over the next several weeks and months our group fell apart. Some were cast out with just cause, some pushed out for no real reason, leaving only a few who still met on occasion.

Before this we led ourselves to believe that there were outside influences seeking our downfall. We were rather arrogant to feel that people in our community were somehow jealous of us. Of course there were several other circumstances in the mix that helped lead us to our conclusions, but when I look back I now know that we had no real proof.

It took me a while following the collapse of this group for me to realize the real issue. The issue was not any outside source of malice, we were the issue. We were our own downfall. The group stopped listening and believing in one another. We cast out one another before we looked for the truth of the matter. Instead of remaining true friends we became enemies and eventually strangers.

Negativity is a special energy lending to a special Magick. It is sneaky and knows exactly what you want to hear at any given time. It is ego driven and selfish. It will lie to you and tell you things that it knows you want to believe, even when they don't make sense. It will place over your eyes a veil that will cloud your view of intent. Negativity breeds negativity and grows like a weed. It will give you a bad outlook on life and people leading to depression and self oppression. It will poison your relationships and make you blind to the truth. Negativity needs to me monitored indefinitely. Once we allow it to go out of control it is very hard to bring back down to a manageable level. There is a time and a place for negativity, after all balance is crucial to becoming a spiritual being. If we never know pain and anguish we will not ever know love and tranquility.

Now this is very hard for many people to hear… but, I have to say it. From my experience I have learned that the real issue is not the person who brings the negative influence, instead it is the person who complains about the perceived negative experience. Yep I said it. It isn't the one who annoys you, it is you. How we see things matters. Our perceptions color everything we experience. When people who come to us with negative emotions, complaints, etc. could it be that they are really only looking for some resolution and maybe companionship? Perhaps they are simply looking for some help or trying to connect with you in the only way they know how. When we dismiss them or seek to remove them from our life we are only adding to the negativity and creating room for more. I have a good example of what I mean.

Most recently I read a thread from a woman seeking to banish a negative co-worker from her life so she could get more work done and not have to deal with her negative influences. What I noticed is that the person writing the thread was exuding a great deal of negativity herself. If I have learned anything from the "Law of Attraction" it is this, "What we put forth is what we attract". Simply put, if you want to attract positive and helpful energy to your daily life you will need to become positive and helpful energy. When we complain about others and place blame we are contradicting our search for positive and helpful energy. By banishing or forcefully removing an energy we invite into our lives, like negativity, we leave a void. This void is filled by something larger and more stubborn than the previous negativity. The reason for this is because we are still attracting the negative energy by focusing on it. It truly is a vicious cycle and one that is not always identified!

One way to turn this cycle around is to change our view and reactions to the things we perceive as negative or annoying. It is not always easy to do, especially when we are in a full blown cycle complete with blinders. Don't worry there are a hundred and one simple things you can do each day that will help you break this cycle. One step is to accept that each day is a new day. Each new day is a new opportunity to make little changes that add up to big differences in the long term. If you mess up, try again tomorrow, and you will do better.

Here is one simple thing you can try the next time you are faced with a negative influence you wish gone. Instead of focusing on all the things you dislike about your co-worker(s), family, friends, job… etc. Find at least one positive thing you like. I know in some cases this is really… I mean REALLY hard, but you can do it. Once you find that positive thing, hold on to it and remember it every time you feel the urge to scream and come out of your skin. Once you remember this positive attribute, smile. Then, as that person passes through your space, wish them blessings of peace, joy, and gratitude.

When you have had an especially hard day or experience and you feel that the only way you will get any resolution is to perform a banishing ritual, try this instead. Create a place for yourself that will help relax you. Light some candles, incense, call the quarters… whatever it is you usually do to feel peaceful and create your sacred space. Sit comfortably and breathe into your core. When you are ready, picture the person you are having issues with and hold their image in your mind. Look at their hair, clothes, face, etc. Next decide on some gifts you would like to give to this person. It can be as many or as few as you like, but remember they must be positive. One gift can be a gift of peace, another can be a gift of happiness, and so on. As you hand each gift to this person, watch them as they un-wrap your gifts. Watch them untie the bow and open the paper. See their face as they smile and feel the pleasure of what you have given them. Perhaps you can even take this to another level and give this person a simple and tangible gift that you have infused with gentle positive energy. It can be a simple decoration for their desk, a wreath, or a pen just keep it small and simple.

The simple act of removing ourselves from negative thinking will always give us the opportunity to grow the positive things we seek. We have good intentions when we seek to banish the negativity we perceive in our lives, but with all good intentions come blind spots. Positive and negative energy are equal in their power when it comes to Magick. When you cast, like a boomerang, the energy that has left you will come back. The difference is what you will attract to yourself as the Magick circles back. What will your boomerang bring back with it?

I no longer practice banishing spells or incorporate banishing into any of my Magickal works. Instead, I focus on bringing in the things that are joyful and enjoyable into my life. During my learning experience with negativity, I have found that it brings back more good than I ever expected. Since I have changed my focus I feel better every day. I see things in a different light from before. When people annoy me I now know how to better handle the negative influence. The most important thing is when I want something there is nothing hindering it from coming to me. All my needs are met and I am happier than I have been in a long time.

I will leave you with this last thought.

The only thing that is truly tangible is now, right here in this moment. The past is not, the future is not. What we feel and how we feel about the past and future is here and now, and we have the ability to change our perceptions of both. In this we also change what will come to us as we move from present into future.

Good things will come to those who seek positive energy, prosperity will come to those who seek to be prosperous, and joy will come to those who are joyful.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

An Eco Challenge for ALL Year!

This challenge is taken from Julia Butterfly so I cannot claim any ownership to it. BUT I think it is a fantastic challenge and definitely opens one’s eyes to how wasteful we really are. I originally posted this in December of 2007 and thought it needed another go around!

The challenge is to carry your garbage around with you for one week. You can carry it in a duffel bag, backpack, etc. and take it with you everywhere. Take it to the bathroom, school, work, the gym, etc. At the end of the week weigh and measure the bag. You will be astounded!

The purpose of this challenge is to show each of us how much waste we actually produce. This is a great way to recognize your true carbon foot print!

I think once you learn how much trash you actually produce you will learn ways to reduce your wasteful tendencies. It is also a great realization of what could happen if we continue to over fill our dumps and landfills without seeking our alternative methods like composting, recycling, etc. Where is the garbage going to go when there is no place left? Perhaps it will end up in your own backyard...

After you complete the challenge do it again in one month and see if you have decreased the amount of garbage, you produce. Decreasing the amount of garbage we each produce is the goal!

If you cannot do it for a full week, try it for a day or two. You will still be amazed!

Good luck!

Friday, January 1, 2010

Butt Prints in the Sand

Blessed Meeting!
I find we fall into a patterns where we unknowingly expect others to take care of our own issues. We do this in ways that are subtle and obscure. We are even clever enough to hide this from our selves. In some cases we try to force others to take the blame for our own mistakes.

This spiritual path is one of self. We follow a path of growth and transmutation. We are challenged to look inward so are able to confront our own inner demons and destructive behaviors.
To know ourselves and help ourselves is one of the most powerful and important tasks on this path. Standing on our own two feet allows us to stand beside the Goddess as she teaches us to walk with conviction.

We must help ourselves. We must listen to the deep inner voice that guides us and urges us to grow. We also must listen to the advice and messages of those who have come before us.

Blessed Be!

Reflections for the New Year

I began writing this to some friends I once felt very close to. My original intent was to mend old and broken relations with this group, but quickly found a more serving purpose. To explain, these relationships seemed to wither and die without explanation. It now feels to me like one day these people were all around me expressing love and compassion, and the next they were gone! Poof! Like an evil curse was cast upon me.

When these relationships went sour I was in a lot of emotional pain. I felt like my entire world was crashing down around me. A long time afterward I was depressed because I missed the people who once made me feel happy and accepted. I also felt like I did something terribly wrong, but no one would tell me what. No one would help me understand what has happened despite my numerous attempts to make amends.

Oh! In addition to all this, I was pregnant with my second child. I am certain that the hormones of being pregnant didn't help my situation, but instead of sticking with me, my "friends" turned away from me. I never got the support I needed from these people who I valued in my life. It was really a sad time for me. They missed my entire pregnancy and now they have missed all the other cool things that come with having a new baby. My son is nearly 11 months old and there is so much more they will miss.

Anyway, every New Year's Eve I take time to reflect on the things in my life I would like to "do over". The purpose is to identify the things I know I did wrong and to not make the same mistakes again. Yes, of course, losing these relationships is one of those things I wish I could do over. In taking this depressing reflection I also learned that there is a lesson all of this pain and separation. This lesson is something I wanted to share with all of you. This experience is for anyone who has experience the loss of important friends and relationships.

I hope you can read this and find some value in it for your own health and new beginnings. Happy New Year!


When I needed you the most;

When you saw the tears in my eyes, you turned away from me.

When I cried out, you ignored my need.

When I told you I was broken, you put your hands up and said there was nothing you would do.

So much time has passed and I still wonder why. There are so many questions unanswered. So many opportunities lost.

Something inside me still cries out to mend the past. With my heart broken and bleeding again I call out to you. The pain of being easily cast aside remains on my heart. The feeling of never being important enough to matter has left a vicious hole.

I call out for peace. I call out for relief. I call out for healing.

Yet my cries remain ignored.

You have missed so much. So many things I wanted to share with you. I miss you, my former sister. I miss your smile and laughter. I miss the fun we once shared and the support we offered.

Your absence in my life is deeply felt. I cannot simply forget our bond. Even after I have moved on and taken on new tasks, friendships, and goals… I still feel the void that was once filled by your friendship.

Perhaps if I matter to you, as much as you mattered to me, you would feel the same void.

So I now wonder… I wonder why I would want a friend who would turn on me so easily. My sense over takes my emotions and brings me back to awareness. When I needed you most you made yourself absent. When I needed your support you took it away. What value could you possibly have that would force me to pursue your friendship once again?

Well… In fully thinking things through, I don't want that again.

You are a terrible friend. Really! You were only a friend in fair weather! Who needs that! I certainly don't! I need real friends who are genuinely caring, compassionate, and loyal. I need real friends who want me around because they love me and not simply because I can offer them something they value and then toss me aside as soon as they are done with my talents, knowledge and gifts. I need loyal friends who are her for the long run.

How blind was I?! These things are not you! What an illusion to believe that you were ever a true friend.

Wow! A true friend would have stuck with me through good times and bad. Only a true friend would be this well rounded. Only a true friend would be courteous and honest. A true friend would have taken the time to know me and understand me. A true friend is not concerned about self but rather is concerned about relationships.

Thank you for vacating my life! Lesson learned!

Now I can make the most of my future relationships.