Kuan Yin’s Birthday (March 19th)

I am currently readying my altar space for both the upcoming Full Moon, Ostara ¬†and Kuan Yin’s birthday, which this year will on March 19th. I decided to cross-stitch a lotus flower in her honor, which hopefully will be done by her birthday, considering that I am in the midst of writing deadlines and homeschooling lessons.

While this is primarily a blog and Shrine that has our Lady Hecate as a Matron Deity, there are a few deities that I connect with on a regular basis. Kuan Yin is one of them.

Kuan Yin Picture Compassion Ritual

I was drawn to her a few years ago, during a specifically restless time, when compassion and peace where at dire needs. And that is what she embodies, compassion and kindness. Compassion not only to our those whom are come in contact with, but with ourselves, our Mother Earth and the animals that share this physical plane with us. Many of her followers are vegetarians, and while I am not, I primarily purchase items that are not tested on animals to honor her and them.

Here is a small list of other traditional ways to honor Kuan Yin on her birthday and beyond:

  • Fast, or at least refrain from animal products of any kind for day
  • Spend the day or parts of the day in silent contemplation
  • Use this day to perform an act of kindness and charity, not necessarily monetary, but giving your time and actions to aid someone in need of compassion
  • Make an offering of fruit, flowers and incense to her
  • Volunteer in an animal shelter
  • write a blog post about peace or commit to becoming a Blogger For Peace
  • recite her mantras

Here is a beautiful video of one of her mantras

However you choose to celebrate this day, may the Kindness and Compassion of the Great Goddess be with you, now and always

Careless Whispers – Words Are Power

One magickal principle suggests that words are powerful. Words create worlds, our chants, our spoken spells, and our prayers are an aspect of that.

But the power of words go beyond the times when we deliberately create change. The carelessly uttered words about another, a group of people and also about ourselves are just as important, specifically if they are repeated often.

Examining how you speak about yourself is an essential part of spiritual growth. Do you speak ill of yourself, do you put yourself down on a regular basis or do your words empower you? Becoming first aware and then moving to adjust your uttering just be a priority. Those words spoken in automatic terms are often an indicator of your inner well being, and therefore an important indicator to you what you need to work on.

So think beyond just the times what you say when you are in front of your altar or in conversation with others, but consider how you speak about yourself to yourself.

Hail Hecate!

Book Review: “Herbs For Reducing Stress And Anxiety” by Rosemary Gladstar

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“Herbs For Reducing Stress And Anxiety” by Rosemary Gladstar
Publisher: Storey Publishing
Release Date: April, 16th 2014
Rating: 4/5 Stars

This book represents a nice overview of herbal remedies that support our nervous system, with a range of easy to follow tea recipes, to making tinctures and other remedies.

While I would not recommend this book for the absolute novice, as it lacks the emphasize on potential counteractions, does not provide sources for the recommended levels of minerals and vitamins and does not tell the novice to cross check with their medical professional for potential counteractions with medication they might be taken, the more advanced student who is aware of these basic safety concerns will enjoy the provided recipes and context as a refresher and a reminder.

The added bonus of resources in the back of the book, shows recommended further reading as well as resources on where to purchase the needed material to re-create the recipes mentioned. All in all this book is solid in information and written in a factual fashion.

Ritual

ritual

When I first began studying the Craft officially, it took me a while to get the point of ritual. Again I will point out that I am not Wiccan, so I do not mean ritual as in the celebratory connection to deity within the framework of Sabbats and Esbats.

With ritual I mean, dedicated repeated practice that repeats each movement, each word, each thought in order to create some form of change, trance, connection to a particular aspect of the less physical – such as seance’ or the deceased, as well as the smaller daily rituals that enable us to work our best as a Witch.

Through experience I began to see beyond the repetition but the meaning behind them – which by the way is in my humble opinion not taught enough, which leads to a disservice and disconnect. I don’t mean the lip service version of explanations that are in books about how to cast a circle, but the deeper meaning behind ritual.

Getting out of your own way.

Ritual performed properly can induce a trance like state. A place where your conscious mind leaves for a little while , making the space to connect with your higher self, getting your disbelief, your personal issues, your current state of being out of the way, and leaving only the pure self. That higher self – without its self-imposed boundaries and limitations – allows creation, for it is the pure you in constant connection with the Universe in whichever form it appears to you as Source. It is you, absent of distractions. It silences enough to allow communication with the energies around you, and from which place you are open to work together with those energies.

Meditation – a daily ritual – is the ritual of listening. Practicing silence, in the absence of desire, answers can find its way through the noise.

Daily devotional rituals change your focus from the mundane to the spiritual, as long as you don’t just go through the motions but are present in the motion, meaning not allowing distracting thoughts come with you into that space. The ritual of creating a circle is symbolic of the separation between day to day living, and connection to that spiritual, higher self and that of others.

Community ritual, if everyone knows the purpose behind it, can do the same and amplify that power. Ritual in that context also brings order and fluidity, but it is harder to stay in the focused state of being, because of increased potential distractions. A common understanding is here essential.

Ritualistic actions in spells, may it be hand signals, the same way of preparing your objects, or stepping toward a special space you have reserved for that purpose (which emphasizes the importance of a designated altar space) is again an action that brings forth that same result – separating the mundane from the creative/spiritual/mind. It is tuning into a different frequency, one that allows rather then one that distracts.

However you choose to practice your rituals matters less. Your personal preference is found only through practice and exploration. Ritual taught should be only a guideline unless we are talking about group work. But even in group work it has to make sense to you. Only when the actions feel right will they flow, and will you be able to use them for the designated purpose.

Hail Hecate!

Misunderstanding The Positive Thinking Process

Thinking positive is often misunderstood – it is not “‘sit here and think positively and good things will just happen”, it is a combination of knowing what you want, emerging yourself in the process of making it happen, enjoying the process and letting go off the outcome. With process I mean action – ideally that means, if you want to be successful in business you should love the processes (actions) that need to be taken in buisness – if you want to be a writer, you got to learn to like the process of creating dialogue, weaving stories or sharing your thoughts. Don’t be in love with the result but with the action it takes to get the result.

Those of us who teach self-help, Witchcraft or any other path that includes concepts such as Law of Attraction need to begin to point this out more and more. There are too many who share the metaphysical concepts without depth and further bring confusion into the mix.

What do you think?