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Saturday, November 28, 2009

Roles Within and Without Ritual

Roles in Wiccan Teaching and Ritual

Role of Clergy
There is a difference between being a Priest/ess and a High Priest/ess. Every Wiccan is a Priest (P) or Priestess (PS) to the Gods, but in Traditionalist settings only those who have taken on the role, honor, and responsibility as Coven leader and teacher may be called High Priest/ess.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Tools

Tools of Wiccan Craft

Before I start with the list, I want to talk a bit about the nature of tools and their energies. Tools can either be active or passive. This refers in part to Elemental associations. Active tools (athame and wand, for example) are associated with the active Elements of Air and Fire. These Elements are active because they are changing and dynamic, charged up and forceful. The passive Elements are then Earth and Water, because they are more mutable and slow in their changes and how they change other things, so their tools (pentacle, cup. cualdron, etc.) are also considered passive.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Celebrations

Holy Days and Celebrations

There are eight Sabbats, or holidays, in the Wiccan calendar. Four of these are Major or Greater Sabbats, also called Fire Festivals, and they are Samhain, Imbolc, Beltane, and Lammas. The other four occur at the two Solstices and two Equinoxes of each year, and are considered the Minor or Lesser Sabbats. The Wheel of the Year, as the whole of the calendar is sometimes called, is an agricultural calendar, marking the seasons according to observable events, such as the first planting or the first harvest. It also tells the story of the life of the God, conveying how His life stages are connected to these agricultural events.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Death, and an Apology

The apology first; it's been a week and a half since I posted here. I was ill, both physically and mentally (bronchitis/sinusitis and lack of depression/anxiety meds). But I'm doing better now, on both fronts.

And now...

Death and Dying

Similar to many Eastern belief systems, I hold the ideas of reincarnation and Karma to be true. The God is seen as being reborn each year, and indeed anyone can observe the whole of nature cycling to Her new life in the Spring. So, why should animals (humans included) be any different from the rest of nature? This is the logic behind the belief that, after death, our spiritual essences (or souls, if you prefer) journey to a paradise called Summerland, where we rest, commune with the Gods and loved ones, and reflect on our most recent life before being reincarnated into another form. Some even remember or have recovered memories of their past lives, and so trust not only the logic, but their own experiences as well.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Magick

I define Magick as occultist Alestair Crowley did, “the Art and Science of causing change in accordance with Will” (spelling it with a "k" is also Crowley's doing, and is meant to differentiate between Witchcraft and sleight of hand). Using that language, Magick becomes no more mysterious or “supernatural” than raising my hand. And, indeed, to any well-trained Witch, it shouldn’t be. Magick is similar to prayer, as it is an appeal to another source for intervention and assistance. However, I view Magick as more involved than prayers; to my mind, prayers are handing over the situation to that other power, saying, “You do it for me and I‘ll cross my fingers and hope it all works out.” Magick is instead saying, “I’m doing what I can on this plane, and now I need You to do what You can in the astral.” If involving some area of the mundane (finding a job, for example), any Magick done should be an extension of mundane efforts (filling out applications, submitting resumes, etc.).

Friday, November 6, 2009

Bath & Body Works Employee Fired for Being Wiccan

From the LiveJournal community BiPolyPaganGeek:
A boycott against Bath and Body Works (Original article on Examiner.com)

Gina Uberti, in this case is Wiccan and had been prior to hiring with this company. Every year for the last six years of her eight year employment, she would take the week of Sahmain off and head to Salem, Massachusetts to celebrate the holiday. Her leave had been approved almost a year prior to the incident.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Admin Post: In Bit of a Pickle

So I've recently signed a contract with Suite101.com to be a Freelance Contributing Writer (yay for me!) I can write about anything I want at this point, so long as it's never appeared on the internet anywhere else, and once I post it there, I can't reproduce it anywhere else online for one year.

Here's why it matters to this blog: Most of the rest of my "101" material falls into that category of unpublished-online. So my question to you few readers I have, is how would you feel about my submitting the future lessons to Suite, and then linking to them from here? You'd still get to see them, just need to leave Blogspot to do so.

Weigh in on the issue for me?

Monday, November 2, 2009

November Full Moon

Full Moon in Taurus, Nov. 2, 2009 c.e.

See this chart for a list of Moon Names from various cultural and religious traditions.

Here are some informational links:
- Starweaver's Full Moon Magic
- Full Moon in Taurus from Astrology.About.com
- Full Moon in Taurus from CaliforniaPsychics.com

And listen to this: Wytches Chant by Inkubus Sukkubus. This is a haunting rendition of the traditional Goddess chant, appropriate since She's at Her strongest at this time.

Last thought for today, something I didn't realize before but that also makes perfect sense; at the Full Moon, its sign is always opposite to that of the Sun's. Not only is this astronomically logical, it is spiritually symbolic, the God and Goddess embodying opposing (though not necessarily antagonistic) forces. This
Full Moon seems especially poignant, since we just passed Samhain - the Goddess is at Her peak while the God has reached His very depths. Something to think about for Esbats this months.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Theology

Wiccan Deity Construct

The main Wiccan view of Deity is that of the Union of the Horned God with the Great Mother Goddess, and this Union is related to the ritual celebrations throughout the year. The God is born at Yule, grows in strength till Midsummer, declines during the Fall months, then dies at Samhain to be reborn again. He lives and dies for the sake of the people and the land, growing with the seedlings and dying with the harvest. The Goddess is both Mother and Wife to Him, depending on the moment in the cycle. This is not, however, an incestuous relationship, but part of the Mystery of the Divine Union. The Goddess is specifically honored during Moon rituals, called Esbats, with the Full Moon seen as the height of Her power.