Current News

I am currently in the process of migrating the content shared here to a series of new websites hosted at shirleytwofeathers.com.

As you explore this site, you may find links to a "page not found" instead of something cool and magickal. For this I apologize. I am very working hard behind the scenes to restore those pages along with a link to their homes on my new website where they can be viewed in full.

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Thursday, December 31, 2009

Once In A Blue Moon Spell

Here's a great spell to utilize the magical properties of the Blue Moon. You will need the following:
  • A square of blue cloth or sturdy blue Christmas wrapping paper. Ideally, the cloth or paper will have moons and stars printed on it, alternatively you can decorate it yourself with glitter glue, stickers, etc.
  • 13 safety pins.
  • Paper and a pen.
  • Length of gold cord or ribbon...
... I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, Book of Shadows, and can be found in its entirety here: Once In A Blue Moon Spell

Full Moon Luck and Joy Spell


This is a very simple spell. You will need two candles, a white one for you and a blue one for friends and family. As the full moon is rising, light the candles and say:

"I light these candles for luck for me,
and for my friends and family,
So they will burn by day and night....

... I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, Book of Shadows, and can be found in its entirety here: Full Moon Luck and Joy Spell

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The Blue Moon

Tomorrow is New Year's Eve. It's a full moon, and it's a Blue Moon. What does that mean?

IN MODERN times, the term "blue moon" is defined as the second full moon occurring within a single month. By a somewhat older definition, it's the third full moon in a season that has four — instead of the normal three — full moons. Either way, it's an out-of-the-ordinary phenomenon occurring only once every few years. Hence the phrase, "once in a blue moon....

... I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, The Pagan Calendar, and can be found in its entirety here: Blue Moon Magick and Lore

Monday, December 28, 2009

Snapdragon - A Wishing Game

Here is an old old spell you can use as a way to say farewell to the Solstice and make a wish for the coming twelve months. It's less dangerous than it seems, though care should always be taken.
Fill a shallow dish with raisins and pour a few spoonfuls of brandy over them. As you pour the brandy, say the following:

You shall receive whatever gift you may name,
as far as wind dries, rain wets, sun revolves;
as far as sea encircless and earth extends....


I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, Book of Shadows (hosted at shirleytwofeathers.com) and can be found in its entirety here: Snapdragon - A Wishing Game

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Bath for Protection and Purification

Place one teaspoon of dried basil in a cup of boiling water. Leave for five minutes, and then strain.

Add the liquid to your bath water to bring a protective and cleansing influence. This herbal bath is particularly useful to rid oneself of the negative feelings left by contact with those who are controlling.

source
Many more bath recipes and ideas can be found at my new website, The Magickal Apothecary.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Frau Holle


Frau Holle also called Hulda is in old German Mythology the goddess of the dead. She plays a prominent part in German folk-lore and superstition. In stormy nights she can be often heard flying through the air, accompanied by weird spirits and witches...

... I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been combined with another and moved to my new website, The Powers that Be. It can be found here: Hulda - Mother Holle

A Christmas Salutation

I salute you!
There is nothing I can give you which you have not.
But there is much, that while I cannot give,
you can take....

... I am so sorry but this post has been moved to my new website, Widdershins, and can be found in its entirety here: A Christmas Salutation

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Invoking the Holly King


Today we do bid Hail to our beloved Holly King
With these ancient carols, we do again sing
He who is called Father Christmas is returning yet again
As the Solstice's longest night has finally begun...

... I am so sorry, but this post has been moved to my new website, Widdershins, and can be found in its entirety here: Invoking The Holly King

'Twas the night before Yule


'Twas the night before Yule, and all through the Coven,
The cookies were baked and removed from the oven.
The bayberry candles were lit on the table,
The altar was wrapped in a new cloth of sable.

The children were nestled, all snug in their beds,
While visions of Yuletime danced in their heads....

I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, Widdershins (hosted at shirleytwofeathers.com) and can be found in its entirety here: 'Twas the night before Yule


A Winter Solstice Story For Children

A group of little Faeries huddled in their home deep under the roots of a giant oak tree. They were safe and snug in their tiny underground cave lined with dandelion fluff, bird feathers, and dried moss.

Outside, the wind blew cold and the snow fell softly down to cover the ground. "I saw the Sun King today," the faerie named Rose said as she pulled her mossy cloak tighter about her. "He looked so old and tired as he walked off through the forest. What is wrong with him?

"The great oak said he's dying" answered Daffodil.

"Dying? Oh, what will we do now?", Little Meadow Grass started to cry, "If the Sun King dies, our little plant friends will not grow. The Birds will not come and sing again. Everything will be winter for ever!" Lilac, Dandelion and Elder Blossom tried to comfort their friend, but they were all very sad. As they huddled together, there was a knock on the tiny door....

I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, Widdershins (hosted at shirleytwofeathers.com) and can be found in its entirety here: A Winter Solstice Story For Children


Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Yuletide Holiday Svaijko

Here's a recipe for a delicious Yuletide holiday svaijko. It is a freely adapted modern version of a very old, traditional Romany holiday recipe.

For the dough:
  • 25 grams of yeast
  • 60 grams of butter
  • 2.5 deciliters of water
  • 0.5 deciliters of sugar
  • 1 liter of flour...
... I am so sorry, but this post has been moved to my new website, Gypsy Magick and Lore, and can be found in its entirety here: Yuletide Holday Savaijko

Monday, December 21, 2009

Rebirth


In lighting the fires, in stringing the lights, we do more than stave off the darkness, even more than honor the sun. We also stand with fierce courage to say to the darkness, "You may come this far but no further!" We have given the darkness its due, we have watched it leach the light from our lives for as long as we had to; now the long night is over, we can tentatively bring our own lights back from hiding, and let the new days begin...

... I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, Widdershins, and can be found in its entirety here: There Is Always Rebirth

The Winter Solstice


At the Winter Solstice we celebrate by bringing warmth, light and cheerfulness into this dark time of the year. Holidays such as this have their origins as "holy days". They are the way human beings mark the sacred times in the yearly cycle of life. On this shortest day of the year, the sun is at its lowest and weakest, a pivot point from which the light will grow stronger and brighter. This is the pivot point of the year. The Romans called it Dies Natalis Invicti Solis, the Birthday of the Unconquered Sun.

A simple way to celebrate this day is with a small candle lighting ceremony. The purpose being to celebrate this time of renewal in our lives, to give thanksgiving for the past and the present and to offer a blessing for the year to come....

... I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been combined with another and moved to my new website, The Pagan Calendar, and can be found here: The Winter Solstice

I am the Holly King


I am the Holly King, the dying Sun and King of the Old Year
Like the Phoenix who rises anew from its ashes
I too shall return, born anew
As the Child, the New Sun and King
I hold in my arms
He is my son and my heir...

... I am so sorry, but this post has been moved to my new website, Widdershins, and can be found in its entirety here: I Am The Holly King

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Hymn To The Sun

Shamash was the Sun God of ancient Babylon. The prayer that follows is one of the longest and most beautiful of the hymns that have come down to us in cuneiform. I think this would make an awesome invocation, prayer, or meditation to greet the Sun as morning dawns after the longest night of the year (The Winter Solstice).


Hail Shamash

You climb to the mountains surveying the earth,
You suspend from the heavens the circle of the lands.
You care for all the peoples of the lands,
And everything that Ea, king of the counsellors, had created is entrusted to you.
Whatever has breath you shepherd without exception,
You are their keeper in upper and lower regions....


... I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, Widdershins, and can be found in its entirety here: Hymn To The Sun

The Birthday of the Unconquered Sun


Soon it will be Yule, Christmas, the Winter Solstice. Another name for this special time is The Birthday of the Unconquered Sun, or Dies Natalis Invicti Solis. One really great way to honor the Sun (and yourself) is with a series of body positions called Sun Salutations. An excellent time to begin this ritual is on the morning of the Winter Solstice just as the sun is rising, (facing east). If a sunrise Sun Salutation isn't possible, but you want to include this in your morning routine, pick a time before breakfast, and that will be fine.

The Sun Salutation, (Surya Namaskar), is a series of 12 yoga postures performed in a single, graceful flow. Each movement is coordinated with the breath. Inhale as you extend or stretch, and exhale as you fold or contract. The Sun Salutation builds strength and increases flexibility. Different styles of yoga perform the Sun Salutation with their own variations. However, the flow presented below covers core steps used in most styles....

... I am so sorry, but this post has been combined with another and moved to my new website, The Pagan Calendar, it can be found here: The Birth of the Unconquered Sun

Friday, December 18, 2009

Incense for Yule

Frankincense
Symbolizing: Sun, Purification, Consecration, Protection, Spiritual Illumination
Forms: incense, oils
Divinities: Sun Gods, Ra at Dawn, Bel

Myrrh
Symbolizing: Healing, Death and Afterlife, Purification, Inner Peace
Forms: incense, oils
Divinities: Isis, Ra at Midday

... I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, Magickal Apothecary, and can be found in its entirety here: Scents and Incense for Yule

Thursday, December 17, 2009

The Yule Log


On the winter solstice, on the longest night of the year, people would place and set afire an entire tree, that was carefully chosen and brought into the house with great ceremony. The largest end of the log would be placed into the fire hearth while the rest of the tree stuck out into the room! The log would be lit from the remains of the previous year's log which had been carefully stored away and slowly fed into the fire through the Twelve Days of Christmas....

... I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, The Pagan Calendar, and can be found in its entirety here: The Yule Log

Yule Log

Ingredients
  • 4 eggs, yokes and whites separated
  • 1/4 cup white granulated sugar
  • 1/ cup white granulated sugar(Yes, I know sugar is listed twice...)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla (or peppermint extract, almond extract...)
  • 2/3 cup white flour
  • 1/4 cup cocoa (the dry powered, not the blocks)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • Whipped cream
  • Chocolate icing (Homemade or store bought)

Directions
Using a wire whip or hand held electric mixer, beat the egg yolks until thick and very close to the color of lemon peels. Gradually add in the 1/2 cup sugar. Set aside. Using extremely clean beaters, whip the egg whites until soft peaks form. Peaks will form but will quickly "slump" over. (Note: oils and fats on the beater or in the bowl will prevent the egg white from whipping correctly.) Gradually add in 1/2 cup sugar and beat until stiff peaks form. They will hold the peaks very well at this point. Gently fold the egg whites into the egg yolks. Try not to beat it up too bad, this cake raises mostly because of the air you've just incorporated into the eggs.

Sift the dry ingredients together. Gently mix or fold into the egg mixture.

Spread batter evenly into a well greased and floured jelly roll pan (15 1/2" x 10 1/2" x 1" pan). Bake at 375 degrees for about 10-12 minutes.

When done, a tooth pick inserted into the center will come out clean.

Immediately loosen the sides and turn the cake out onto a lint-free towel that has been sprinkled with flour or powdered sugar. Starting at the narrow edge, roll the cake and the towel up together. When cool, unroll and remove the towel. Completely cover the upper surface with the whipped cream. We like to add shreds of chocolate, but this is optional.

Re-roll the cake. Now you have a brown and white spiraled "log". Place it on the serving tray or plate to ice it because you won't be able to move it to another server once it has been iced. Spread the chocolate icing over the surface of the cake, don't worry about it being even.

After the surface is covered, take a fork to make short,wavy patterns coming the entire surface to give a log like texture.

If you want, garnish the center with small pine trimmings or cones (clean ones...)

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Winter Solstice Potpourri

Here's a recipe for a nice potpourri for the upcoming Winter Solstice. It makes a great gift for your favorite magickal friends.
  • 20 drops musk oil
  • 25 drops pine oil
  • 1 cup oak moss
  • 2 cups dried mistletoe...
... I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, The Magickal Apothecary, and can be found in its entirety here: Winter Solstice Potpourri

A Wassail Ceremony

Here is a simple wassail ceremony.

  • Heat a large container of ale or beer - about 3 or 4 pints.
  • Add 1/2 cup sugar and 1/4 cup mixed spices (cinnamon sticks and whole cloves are also excellent)
  • Cut up 2 or 3 small sweet apples and add those.
  • Add 1 1/4 cup of pineapple juice and the same of orange.
  • Squeeze 2 lemons into the brew.
  • Place over a slow flame; then, before it begins to boil, take off the heat and whip up some cream. Let this float on top of the brew like foam....
... I am so sorry, but this post has been combined with another and moved to my new website, The Pagan Calendar, and can be found here: Ves Heill - Be Healthy

Wassail For Kids

    • 6 cinnamon sticks
    • 1 tsp. ground allspice
    • 12 oz frozen apple juice
    • 2 cups cranberry juice
    • 1/4 cup sugar
    • 16 whole cloves
    Tie spices together in a cheesecloth bag. Combine juices, sugar, and bitters. Simmer together for ten minutes and remove spice bag. Serve hot, but not too hot for the little ones.

    Ves Heill - Be Healthy

    The wassail—a centuries old tradition from Great Britain—is a joy-filled party celebrating the Winter Solstice, Christmastime and happy tidings. Indeed, many of the traditions of this likeable event are the originators of well-known seasonal classics (like caroling, for one).


    The word wassail itself comes from the old Norse "ves heill," which literally means "be healthy." It is a toast of goodwill and is at the heart of what wassailing is all about....

    ... I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, The Pagan Calendar, and can be found in its entirety here: Ves Heill - Be Healthy

    Wassail Recipe for Yule


    For the Wassail's Baked Apples:
    • 1 dozen cooking apples
    • 1 cup brown sugar
    • 3 tablespoons cinnamon
    • butter or margarine
    • 3/4 cup boiling water
    • 2 tablespoons sugar
    Core apples and place in an 8 X 8 inch baking pan. Mix sugar and cinnamon, fill apples with mixture, dot tops with butter. Add boiling water and sugar to pan and bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 40 to 60 minutes....

    ... I am so sorry, but this post has been moved to my new website, The Pagan Calendar, and can be found in its entirety here: Traditional Wassail Recipe for Yule

    Yule Correspondences

    Trees for Yule:
    • Oak : Endurance, Strength, Triumph, Protection.
    • Yew : Last Day of Solar Year; Death
    • Silver Fir: Winter Solstice Day; Birth.
    • Birch: Month following Winter Solstice; Beginnings.
    Colors of Yule
    • Red,
    • Green...
    ... I am so sorry to do this to you,  but this post has been moved to my new website, Magickal Ingredients, and can be found in its entirety here: Correspondences For Yule

    Twelfth Night Wassail Celebration

    Wassailing the trees occurred on old "twelfth night", the 12th night after Christmas eve, or January 17th on the old calendar. Obviously traditions varied, but in Devonshire, Herefordshire and in other parts of the West Country of England (as well as elsewhere no doubt) families would hold a feast with cakes, cider and in some areas beer and ale too. After a time of eating and drinking everyone trooped out to the orchard to wassail the trees, and wake them up from winter for the coming season as well as scare off any bad energy, spirits or demons .

    Ale, beer or cider soaked toast, in some areas special cakes, would be placed in the tree branches or in a fork of the tree, and then be splashed with more cider. Trees might be beaten with sticks...

    I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, The Pagan Calendar (hosted at shirleytwofeathers.com) and can be found in its entirety here: Twelfth Night Wassail Celebration


    Wednesday, December 09, 2009

    A Pagan Christmas Tree

    The Christian tradition of a Christmas tree has its origins in the Pagan Yule celebration. Pagan families would bring a live tree into the home so the wood spirits would have a place to keep warm during the cold winter months. Bells were hung in the limbs so you could tell when a spirit was present.

    Food and treats were hung on the branches for the spirits to eat and a five-pointed star, symbol of the five elements, was placed atop the tree.

    Sunday, December 06, 2009

    Snow Spells

    Bury a piece of paper in the snow with a wish for something you want to hold or freeze in place...

    Also, use snow to melt down a hard heart. Write the name of someone who is angry with you or cold...

    I'm so sorry to do this to you but these two spells have been moved to my new website, Book of Shadows, hosted at shirleytwofeathers.com and can be found in their entirety here: Melt a Heart Spell and Freeze in Place Spell


    Ice and Snow magic


    The primary purpose of ice magic is transformation. Ice is a combination of water and air. Once frozen, if fire is added, the ice melts.

    Floating candles in a bowl of water and ice may seem like a simple type of spell, but it calls for a natural balance to take place....

    I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, Book of Shadows (hosted at shirleytwofeathers.com), and can be found in their entirety here: Ice and Snow Magic

    Thursday, December 03, 2009

    Yule Traditions and Symbols


    Kissing Under The Misteletoe - Kissing under the mistletoe was first associated with the Greek celebration of Saturnalia and because it was believed to have the power of bestowing fertility, it became associated with marriage rites. In some parts of England, the Christmas mistletoe is burned on the Twelfth Night because it was believed that if it were not burned, all those who had kissed beneath it would never marry. And did you know that originally the custom was that a man should pluck one berry from the mistletoe each time he kisses a woman under the mistletoe, and when the last berry is gone, there should be no more kissing! (Information from Sara Williams)

    Leaving Cookies for Santa - The ancient Celtic peoples left offerings of seeds, oats and oatcakes for the "wee people" and for the Gods or Goddesses of the different tribes. This practice evolved into the modern practice of leaving milk and cookies for Santa Claus....

    I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, The Pagan Calendar (hosted at shirleytwofeathers.com) it has been combined with more information, and can be found here: Yule


    Winter Solstice Chant

    Geese and standing stones and mist,
    Baying hounds and hooting owl,
    Sparkling stars, snow is crisp
    Herne is here. Bring forth the Bowl.


    I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, Widdershins (hosted at shirleytwofeathers.com) and can be found in its entirety here: Winter Solstice Chant


    Wednesday, December 02, 2009

    Big Winter Moon

    The last moon phase of the year is the Big Winter Moon in December, also called Long Nights Moon, or the Cold Moon.

    Correspondences:

    •Colors: White, red, and black
    •Gemstones: Obsidian, ruby, serpentine
    •Trees: Pine, holly
    •Gods: Minerva, Osiris, Athena, Persephone and Hades
    •Herbs: Ivy, mistletoe, holly and berries, cinnamon
    •Element: Fire

    As the days get shorter and Yule approaches with the longest night of the year, we force ourselves to get through the darkness...

    I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, The Pagan Calendar (hosted at shirleytwofeathers.com) and can be found in its entirety here: Big Winter Moon


    Tuesday, December 01, 2009

    December Moon Names

    What follows is a list (in alphabetical order) of the names given to the December moon. Also listed is the tradition and/or origin of that moon name:


    Aerra Geola ~other
    Ashes Fire Moon ~San Juan
    Before Yule Moon ~Cherokee
    Big Bear’s Moon ~Winnebago...

    I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, The Pagan Calendar (hosted at shirleytwofeathers.com) and can be found in its entirety here: December Moon Names


    Tuesday, November 03, 2009

    Pagan Calendar of Days for 2010

    Here is a quick list of pagan, magical, and other holidays for November 2009 through December 2010. You will notice that some of the holidays are different depending on which side of the equator you are on.

    November 2009
    December 2009
    January 2010
    February 2010
    March 2010
    April 2010
    May 2010
    June 2010
    July 2010
    • 4: Independence Day
    • 11: New moon
    • 11: Solar eclipse
    • 25: Full moon -- Blessing Moon
    August 2010
    September 2010
    October 2010
    November 2010
    • 6: New moon
    • 11: Veteran's Day
    • 21: Full moon -- Mourning Moon
    • 25: Thanksgiving day (United States)
    • 30: Festival of Hecate Trivia (The night of the crossroads.)
    December 2010
    • 5: New moon
    • 17: Beginning of Saturnalia
    • 21: Full moon -- Long Nights Moon
    • 21: Winter Solstice or Yule
    • 21: Litha (Southern Hemisphere)
    • 25: Christmas Day
    • 25: Feast of Frau Halle, Germanic goddess
    • 31: Festival of Hogmanay

    Monday, November 02, 2009

    The Mourning Moon



    The Mourning Moon is upon us. As the days grow shorter and the sun's life-giving fires are banked, sometimes it seems so dark we feel the light will never return. This moon, however, is a reminder that death is just a part of the endless cycle of life, death, and rebirth....

    ... I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, The Pagan Calendar, and can be found in its entirety here: The Mourning Moon

    Sunday, November 01, 2009

    November Moon Names

    What follows is a list (in alphabetical order) of the names given to the November moon. Also listed is the tradition and/or origin of that moon name:


    All Gathered Moon ~San Juan, Native American
    Beaver Moon, ~Algonquin, Native American, Colonial
    ...

    I'm sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, The Pagan Calendar (hosted at shirleytwofeathers.com) and can be found in its entirety here: November Moon Names

    God Is Alive

    God is alive...Magic is afoot...God is alive...magic is afoot...
    God is afoot...Magic is alive...Alive is afoot...magic never died!



    God is alive...Magic is afoot...God is alive...magic is afoot...
    God is afoot...Magic is alive...Alive is afoot...magic never died!

    God never sickened. Many poor men lied. Many sick men lied.
    Magic never weakened. Magic never hid. Magic always ruled. God is afoot.
    God never died!

    God was Ruler, though his funeral lengthened.
    Though His mourners thickened, magic never fled.
    Though His shrouds were hoisted the naked God did live;
    Though His words were twisted the naked magic thrived;
    Though His death was published round and round the world
    The heart did not believe.

    Many hurt men wondered. Many struck men bled.
    Magic never faltered. Magic always led.
    Many stones were rolled, but God would not lie down!
    Many wild men lied.
    Many fat men listened.
    Though they offered stones, magic still was fed!
    Though they locked their coffers, God was always served.

    Magic is afoot...God is alive...
    Alive is afoot...Alive is in command.

    Many weak men hungered.
    Many strong men thrived.
    Though they boasted solitude, God was at their side.
    Nor the dreamer in his cell, nor the captain on the hill:
    Magic is alive!
    Though His death was pardoned 'round and 'round the world,
    The heart would not believe!

    Though laws were carved in marble they could not shelter men;
    Though altars built in Parliaments, they could not order men;
    Police arrested magic and magic went with them, ah!
    For magic loves the hungry...

    But magic would not tarry, it moves from arm to arm,
    It would not stay with them; it cannot come to harm:
    Magic is afoot! It cannot come to harm.
    It rests in an empty palm. It spawns in an empty mind.
    But magic is no instrument: magic is the End!

    Many men drove magic, but magic stayed behind; Many strong men lied.
    They only passed thru magic and out the other side!
    Many weak men lied.
    They came to God in secret and though they left Him nourished,
    They would not tell Who healed;
    Though mountains danced before them, they said that God was dead!
    Though His shrouds were hoisted, the naked God did live!

    God is alive! Magic is afoot...
    God is alive...God is alive...Magic is afoot...

    This I mean to whisper to my mind:
    This I mean to laugh with in my mind:
    This I mean my mind to serve
    'Til service is but magic, moving through the world
    And mind itself is magic, coursing through the flesh
    And flesh itself is magic, dancing on a clock,
    And Time itself, the magic length of God!

    God is alive...Magic is afoot...Magic is afoot...God is alive..
    Magic is alive...God is afoot...Alive is afoot...God never died.
    Many strong men lied.
    They only passed through magic and out the other side!
    This I mean to whisper to my mind:
    This I mean to laugh with in my mind:
    This I mean my mind to serve
    'Til service is but magic, moving through the world
    And mind itself is magic, coursing through the flesh
    And flesh itself is magic, dancing on a clock,
    And Time itself, the magic length of God!

    Lyrics: Leonard Cohen
    Sung by: Buffy St. Marie

    Friday, October 30, 2009

    Rest In Peace Spells



    Do the dead rest easy? Flowers and flowering shrubs may be planted on the grave to serve as barometers. Allegedly if the flowers thrive and bloom, there's no need to worry about whoever's in the grave. Of course some plants are considered better barometers than others....

    I'm so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, Book of Shadows, hosted at shirleytwofeathers.com, and can be found in it's entirety here: Rest in Peace Spells

    Celebrating Day of the Dead


    Today is the last day of the Day of the Dead (Día de los Muertos). Honoring the dead occurs in ancient cultures all over the world, and even in modern times it plays an important role in religions. It is founded on the belief that the dead live on and are able to influence the lives of later generations...

    I'm so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website The Pagan Calendar and can be found in it's entirety here: The Day of the Dead

    Sunday, October 25, 2009

    Old Superstitions About Spiders


    Never kill a spider, it's very bad luck! Here are some of the "old country" beliefs about seeing spiders and what it might mean:
    • A spider with syrup cures fever.
    • Seeing a spider run down a web in the afternoon means you'll take a trip.
    • You'll meet a new friend if you run into a web.
    • A spider is a repellent against plague when worn around the neck in a walnut shell.
    • Seen running over clothes - a new set of clothes
    • Finding a spider in the morning - Sorrow
    • Finding a spider at midday - Anxiety
    • Finding a spider in the evening - Loss
    • A spider spinning in the morning - Good Luck
    • A spider climbing its thread - Good News
    • A spider dropping on its thread - Good Luck
    • Finding a spider on your body - Good Fortune
    • Seeing a spider cross a wall - Good Luck
    • A spider's web on a doorway - A Visitor
    • A spider on your clothes – Money

    Monday, October 05, 2009

    Thought for the day!

    "... for magic to happen in your life,
    you must believe in magic."

    ~ Lynn Andrews



    ... more quotes about magick can be found at my new website, Widdershins

    Thursday, October 01, 2009

    Cosmos Lore and Magick

    Element: Air
    Month: October
    Numbers: 2 and 8
    Magickal Qualities: Harmony; Order; Symetry; Balance; Simplicity

    The name Cosmos comes from the Greek kosmos, meaning order, harmony, or the world.

    I'm so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to a brand new mini-site, Magickal Ingredients hosted at shirleytwofeathers.com. It can be found in it's entirety here: Cosmos

    Sunday, September 27, 2009

    Dictionary of Herbal Intentions


    • Beauty: Avocado, Catnip, Ginsing, Maidenhair
    I'm so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my website, shirleytwofeathers.com, and can be found in it's entirety, here, on the brand new mini-site hosted there called Magickal Ingredients.

    Eucalyptus for Magic and Healing

    Eucalyptus is bound to the Moon and Water. It is used magically for protection, purification, and health....

    I am sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my brand new mini-site Magickal Ingredients, which is part of my website, shirleytwofeathers.com, and can be found in it's entirety here: Eucalyptus

    Monday, September 14, 2009

    Old Moon - New Moon




    This particular phase of the moon is called,
    "The old moon in the new moon's arms."
    Isn't that a lovely way to think of it?

    Tuesday, September 08, 2009

    Gypsies and Dreaming


    Gypsies hold much stock in dreams and are renowned dream interpreters. Although Tunisian and Algerian Romanies are the recognized experts in this field, English Gypsies certainly have been practicing dream interpretation for many generations.

    In common with all Gypsies, the English Travelers maintain that through dreams they are being given secret knowledge that could affect their future, positively or negatively. They believe dreams come from the spirits of their ancestors.

    Gypsies are actually very observant and, in some ways, very prosaic. The first thing a knowledgeable Romani will do when asked about the significance of a particular dream is to inquire about...

    ... I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, Gypsy Magick and Lore, and can be found in its entirety here: Gypsies and Dreaming

    Monday, August 24, 2009

    Old Names For Herbs - A to Z

    In the old days, herbalists and midwives didn't use textbook botanical names for herbs. Medicinal and magical plants had colorful descriptive names. Often, old books about magic and herbal healing use the folk names instead of the names commonly used today, and it can be confusing. So, here is an alphabetical listing of those names, along with the common and botanical names in current use. You'll notice that some plants have a variety of names, and some names refer to a variety of plants.

    • A Hawk's Heart: Heart of Wormwood Artemisia absinthium
    • A Lion's Hairs: Tongue of a Turnip [i.e., the leaves of the taproot] Brassica napus
    • A Man's Bile: Turnip Sap Brassica napus
    • A Pig's Tail: Leopard's Bane Arnica montana
    • A Titan's Blood: Wild Lettuce Lactuca virosa
    • Aaron's Rod: Goldenrod Solidago Virgaurea -or- Great Mullein Verbascum thapsus
    • A Bone of an Ibis: Buckthorn Rhamnus cathartica
    • Absinthe: Wormwood Artemisia Absinthium
    • Adder's Fork: Bistort Polygonum Bistorta
    • Adder's Mouth: Chickweed Stellaria Media
    • Adder's Tongue: Dogstooth Violet Erythronium multiscapoideum
    ... I am so sorry, but this post has been moved to my new website, Magickal Ingredients, and can be found in its entirety here: Old Names For Herbs

    Tuesday, August 18, 2009

    King of the Gypsies


    EXTRACT FROM AN INTERVIEW WITH LOCAL MAN BOB CLINTON - Journal 1
    Recorded 26.5.1984 at Suckley, Worcestershire by Eric Payne

    Bob recounted that:- “Scarratt was the King of the Gypsies.   When one dies, they pick another. He was one of the richer type of Romany, he was a Romany you see … there’s a difference between a Gypsy and a hedge crawler that’s taken to the road.

    They had two great big horses on a pole pulling the van through here and his family were ‘well to do’, with sovereigns on their fingers and in their ears. All their money was more or less carried on their person, although some was, I think, in their milk churns or in their vardos’. They had no bank accounts, no bank books, they couldn’t read anything – that was the idea of that.

    Scarratt would lead and go first with his showpiece van and his horses on the pole, nobody else had a van and horses, so they stood out like a sore thumb! If you were working at the roadside when he passed, you’d look up at him and say ‘How are you’ …. you knew it was Scarratt, he hadn’t a name on his van, but you knew it was him with his piebald horses. Word would have gone round that he was on his way, so the other vans started to gather but nobody would proceed until he had gone first. Scarratt administered his own law. He would give offenders up to the police if they’d done anything terrible, but if it was a trivial offence he’d see to it, and if he thought it was bad enough, he’d drum ‘em out, they were no longer in his kingdom .. and he was King!”

    Tuesday, August 04, 2009

    Insomnia Spell - Hecate's Bath

    Once upon a time, according to legend, Hecate had a temple in the ancient city of Colchis, surrounded by vast botanical gardens. Her priestesses, including her most famous devotee Medea, were famed for their botanical knowledge. No doubt they could concoct a sleeping potion or two. This simple bath uses two of Hecate's sacred materials - honey and lavender - to soothe the way to sleep and encourage healing dreams....

    ... I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, Magickal Apothecary, and can be found in its entirety here: Insomnia Spell - Hecate's Bath

    Tuesday, July 21, 2009

    Magick and The Solar Eclipse


    Throughout the year, the sun waxes and wanes. At the Winter Solstice, the shortest day of the year, the sun is only visible for a few short hours. Days become longer and at the Spring or Vernal Equinox, day and night are equal. At the Summer Solstice, the sun is visible for the longest period of time (the longest day of the year). Days start to become shorter and at the Autumnal Equinox, day and night are equal again. Finally, as the sun wanes, we are at the Winter Solstice again.

    During a solar eclipse, we experience what might be called a "micro year". The sun is whole, then partially or completely hidden, and then visible again. Within just a few minutes, an energy similar to a complete cycle of solstices and equinoxes can be felt....

    I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, The Pagan Calendar, and can be found (along with even more great information on Solar Eclipses in its entirety here: The Solar Eclipse and Magick

    Saturday, July 18, 2009

    Sky Divination


    Go outside at night when the sky is clear. Ask a question. If the stars seem to glow brighter, or if a shooting star races across the sky, the answer is yes. If nothing seems to occur after fifteen minutes, or if clouds blot out the stars, the response is no.

    Before going to bed, walk outside, look up at the sky...

    ... I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, Divination, and can be found in its entirety here: Sky Divination

    Monday, June 22, 2009

    The Swallow Tattoo

    Because I have uploaded information on the Swallow as a totem, or power animal, I thought it might also be a good idea to post information about the swallow tattoo, and the significance of it.


    Having a swallow tattoo is a creative way of expressing yourself. If you are going to get one, you may want to understand what it means first. The symbolism of the swallow tattoo is cause for controversy and confusion.

    Possessing a swallow tattoo symbol used to be a sign of status among sailors. The meaning behind it was that swallows, supposedly, protected the sailors from harm on their journeys. However, a similar version of the story is that, if the sailors did die at sea, the swallow would protect their soul and carry them to heaven. Either way, the meaning is similar. It was a great comfort, as well as a status symbol, to sailors out at sea.

    According to legend, after sailing for at least five thousand miles, a sailor could get a swallow tattoo symbol put on his chest, to mark the occasion. This gave him a great sense of honor and achievement. A longer version of the legend is that, when he had traveled over ten thousand miles, he was entitled to get a second swallow tattoo on the other side of his chest.

    Getting a second tattoo gave sailors an enormous sense of pride and accomplishment. It also served as a sort of pictorial resume. Since traveling by ship was very dangerous during that time. Thus, it was a sign of an experienced sailor who could be counted on in a crisis. Sailors with two swallow tattoo symbols on their chests, instead of one, were especially sought after. It meant that they had weathered many storms and gotten through many challenges. Therefore, any captain looking for new crew members was always happy to see a sailor with two swallow tattoos on his chest.

    Here is one story of the origin of the swallow tattoo: there was a ship named the swallow, the men had a mutiny and the original seven mutineers had swallows tattooed on them so that they could identify each other. Out of this, two things happened:
    1. The authorities heard of this identification and searched for the seven sailors who got swallows.
    2. Their friends got swallows tattooed on them and lied about being one of the original seven to throw the authorities off the right trail.

    To a sailor the swallow means a "safe return home". Seeing a swallow is the "first tsign that land is near." Swallows are known to travel far distances out to sea during migration and would rest on boats close to shore which gave early mariners the first sign that land was indeed close by. The horizon is 12 miles from a boater's standpoint in the ocean (more if higher up) and swallows fly further then 12 miles out. The swallow is also known as a sparrow and was worn by the famous pirate "Jack Sparrows".

    The story also goes that if a sailor with a swallow tattoo drowns; the swallows come down and lift his soul to the heavens.

    The swallow is a noble bird, with a rich history. It is a symbol of honor, faith, love and hope. To sailors in olden days, it represented everything from luck to loyalty. It served as a reminder of family, friendship and honor.

    In modern times, the sparrow has come to have many, sometimes quite different, meanings when worn as a tattoo. Here are some of them:

    • Swallow tattoos are associated with loyalty and fidelity - swallows choose a mate for life and will only nest with that bird and no other.
    • They carry a message of hope, when sailors saw a swallow they knew that land was near.
    • Freedom.
    • It's a symbol of good luck for adventurers and travelers who will always find their way home. The swallows return home to San Juan Capistrano every year. So the tattoos were used to say that you will always come home.
    • They are a sign of loyalty and pride.
    • The swallow tattoo is a sign of enduring life, love and hope. It represents enduring courage and happiness.

    There also seems to be a small connection to music. Some people connected swallows with a love, respect and appreciation for music. Much like the swallows always returning to San Juan, their home. The tattoo can represent always being home when you're within the music.

    Before you run out and get a swallow tattoo, you might want to consider the following. Here is what one person shared about his grandfather's swallow tattoos:

    "I grew up in a bad area in Australia and a grandfather of a friend of mine came from England. He was a very hard man and the whole family was very tough and underworld related. I remember being a kid in their house when the grandfather was there and I asked him what his tattoos meant. He looked down on me with a hard face and said in a thick English accent (they moved to Australia in the 70's) "It means I can walk into any pub and put my hands on the bar and if anyone would want to fight, then I would fight them". He was a big guy and I had heard rumors of him tearing people apart. So I guess that they kind of mean courage, strength and loyalty. Oh yeah he was also a "Teddy Boy" in England, but I am not so sure what that is."

    Depending on where you grew up, and the places you hang out, swallow tattoos can also mean:

    • "Live long and live hard".
    • Swallows on the back of the hands are supposed to give you faster hands, such as in a fight or at work.
    • The swallow tattoo in England means "these fists fly".
    • If they're on the backs of the hands, it means you'll be faster and stronger in a fight. it's mostly in Great Britain and Australia though.
    • In terms of jail house tattoos, the bluebirds, swallows or sparrows can stand for white supremacy or white power.
    • In Great Britain, the swallow tattoo on your hands means you've earned your 'wings' in a UK prison, i.e. you have been inititated into male-male sex rituals.
    • Swallow tattoos on a man's hands and neck originated in British prisons from the term 'jail-bird'. They indicate that you've gone to prison and done your 'bird'.
    • In Scotland it usually signifies a spell in the infamous Bar-L or Barlinnie prison in Glasgow.
    • The swallow's wings are so long that the bird never reaches the ground. It always flies high above everything else on earth. Prisoners are known to tattoo themselves with a swallow when they leave prison as a symbol of freedom.

    Wednesday, June 03, 2009

    Hello Auntie Moss

    Auntie Moss has come to stay with us here at Gypsy Magic. How cool is that?

    Who is she and where did she come from? She is a wonderful little old village witch who got a really bad rap from Ursula LeGuin in her Earthsea book "Tehanu." The description in the book reads like this:

    "Aunty Moss was a dour creature, unmarried, like most witches, and unwashed, with greying hair tied in curious charm-knots, and eyes red-rimmed from herb smoke." She was further described as, "unpredictable, unreliable, incomprehensible, passionate, ignorant, sly, and dirty."

    The one thing said about her that was true is "she was following her heart, it was a dark, wild, queer heart, like a crow, going its own ways and on its own errands." What the book neglected to say was that she is a wise and wonderful witchy woman who has never steered me wrong.

    Lucky for us, I was able to find an actual picture of her, and she did graciously agree to be of help to those of you who ask for advice and insight. You'll find her at the bottom of the page (here at Gypsy Magic). Go ahead, scroll down, ask her something, you know you want to!

    New Beginnings


    For this spell, you need:
    • 1 amethyst cluster
    • 2 crystal points
    • 1 bag of sea salt
    • Black Bag
    • Black votive candle in candle holder and matches
    • Candy or something sweet to eat
    You can make a new start any time, but some times are better than others. When the moon is new, she lends her energy to new beginnings.

    The first month of the New Year is also a wonderful time to have a new beginning....

    I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, Book of Shadows, hosted at shirleytwofeathers.com, and can be found in its entirety here: New Beginnings


    Colors And Their Meanings


    • Black: The meaning of the color black is mystery and protection. It is the color of the clergy, and witches use it to cloak themselves and safeguard their mysteries.
    • White: White is a holy color, and it symbolizes purity, innocence, wholeness and completion.
    • Gray: The color gray is an unemotional color. It is detached, neutral, impartial and indecisive - the fence-sitter. Gray is reserved, quiet and conservative. It has a steadying effect on other colors around it.
    • Gold: Gold is the color of kings, gold symbolizes wealth, success, achievement and triumph and status. It is related to the sun....
    I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, Magickal Ingredients, hosted at shirleytwofeathers.com, and can be found in its entirety here: The Magickal Meanings of Colors

    Monday, May 18, 2009

    Seven Roses Bath

    • Seven red roses
    • Handful sea salt
    • Splash of vinegar
    • Squeeze of lemon
    • Splash of pure spring water
    Fill your bath with water. Cast all of the ingredients into the tub. Spend 7 minutes (or multiples thereof) in the bath focusing on your goals and what you want to achieve. Dry off with a clean towel and put on fresh clean clothes.

    Leave the bathwater for at least 1 hour before draining away so that the energies can flow through your home.

    From: The Element Encyclopedia of 5000 Spells
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