Friday, September 2, 2016

Respect and Polite Courtesy

Bushido Virtues carry lessons that perhaps all people can learn from and apply. This month, my coven works on the Bushido Virtue of REI (Respect & Polite Courtesy.

There is no reason to be cruel, no need to prove strength. Be courteous to even your enemies. Without the outward show of respect, we are nothing more than animals. Be respected not for your strength in battle, but in how you deal respectfully with all people in all situations. True strength becomes apparent during difficult times.


REI – Politeness or Morality
The kanji for rei is a modern abbreviated form, which does not reveal very much of the ancient character. The ancient symbol shows a sacrificing vessel that evokes the rites and ceremonies conducted for worshipping and offerings. The character actually means rite or ceremony but in a broader sense it means respect. Rei too is essential to Confucianism: In society rei governs your actions towards others, a fundamental politeness, very much related to jin. It is often translated with morality, but as morality has other connotations I suggest politeness.

Rei is politeness, respect shown in social behavior.


Discerning the difference between obsequiousness and politeness can be difficult for casual visitors to Japan, but for a true man, courtesy is rooted in benevolence: Courtesy and good manners have been noticed by every foreign tourist as distinctive Japanese traits. But Politeness should be the expression of a benevolent regard for the feelings of others; it’s a poor virtue if it’s motivated only by a fear of offending good taste. In its highest form Politeness approaches love.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Sun Water & Moon Water

Among many magical components are the ever versatile Perfume Waters. These can be bought through The Magical Blend. Here is a list of the common ones and what they are used for:

  • Angel Water: sprinkle around a bedroom, or anoint a person to call a guardian angel or protective spirit to watch over them
  • Florida Water: used in rituals for purification and in spells to remove negativity and suppress gossip, also to encourage calm and positive emotions
  • Glory Water: anoint yourself to have success and power
  • Holy Water: used to bless people, places and things, also used to drive away evil
  • Passion Water: anoint yourself for attractive energy or sprinkle on the bed for passionate energy
  • Peace Water: used to encourage peace and calm
  • War Water: sprinkle about if there is a threat and to remove hexes
  • Water of Notre Dame: used to encourage health, soak in a soft cloth and wipe the person down from head to toe
While the above are useful in your magical practice and for various spells, Sun Water and Moon Water are used in rituals.

Sun Water: anoint yourself for power/vitality/solar energy, used to strengthen the power of the Sun or the God in a ritual, also used to anoint people and ritual space for Sabbat rituals.

A sunstone has been added to each bottle for greater potency.

 Moon Water: anoint yourself for cleansing/intuition/lunar energy, used to strengthen the power of the Moon or the Goddess in a ritual, also used tp anoint people and ritual space for esbats.

A moonstone has been added to each bottle for greater potency.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

The Magic of Incense Powder

How to Use Incense & Why

Incense has been used throughout history for its ability to attract certain energies. The columns of smoke arising from burning incense was associated with wishes and prayers being carried skyward to the Gods.

Besides the aromatherapeutic value of incense, and the ability of scents to affect the individual and the energy of a place, the proper use of incense will help charge an area with the magickal vibrations of a desired intention or goal. It is used to attract positive spiritual aid for the fulfillment of the Practitioner’s spiritual requests, to drive away negative forces and banish negative energies from a person, place, or thing.

When used in combination with candles and sacred oils, incense acts as a powerful aid to the magickal worker’s prayers and meditations, helping bring about the positive fulfillment of the working. 

Incense Powder

Incense powder is a self-igniting scented powder base. You can form it into a cone shape and light it directly (on a heat safe dish of course), or you can burn it a pinch at a time on hot charcoal as you would resin incense. Incense powders are excellent as a base for herbal/resin blends that you make yourself for your rituals. A great way to personalize what you do!

(The above was taken from Magical Blend Book of Secrets V1

Making your own incense powder is an incredibly way to heighten and empower the work you are about to do and achieve greater success in your spells. We especially like to use one of the pre-blended incense powders from The Magical Blend and then add something special to it to focus it more for our purposes. A must for any witch's magical supplies!!

The Magical Blend carries home-made blended incense powders for all your magical needs. They can even make a specialized individual or personalized blend just for you! Here is a list of what they have to offer:

  • 7 African Powers: general well-being & prosperity
  • Attraction
  • Black Cat: gambling luck, also protection of the home
  • Come to Me
  • Concentration
  • Court Case: success in legal matters
  • Crown of Success: success, especially in gambling and situations of chance
  • Dragon's Blood: purification, protection, overcoming obstacles, magical catalyst
  • Drive Away Evil
  • Exorcism
  • Fast Luck
  • Fire of Love
  • Gambler's Luck
  • Healing
  • High John: attract money, break through barriers, overcome obstacles
  • Jinx Removing
  • King Solomon: wisdom, personal power, prosperity
  • Lucky Nine: success in financial matters
  • Lucky Prophet: activate your psychic powers
  • Money Drawing
  • Peace
  • Peaceful Home
  • Prosperity
  • Protection
  • Psychic Powers: increase divinatory abilities
  • Purification
  • Queen of Sheba: obtain favors from others
  • Reversing
  • Sandalwood: spirituality, purification, healing, meditation, clairvoyance, spiritual blessing
  • Success
  • Uncrossing: removes curses and negative energies
  • VanVan: wishes and attraction
  • Wealthy Way

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

The Charge

~~ by Doreen Valiente ~~

Listen to the words of the Great Mother, who was of old also called Artemis; Astarte; Diana; Melusine; Aphrodite; Cerridwen; Dana; Arianrhod; Isis; Bride; and by many other names.

Whenever ye have need of anything, once in a month, and better it be when the Moon be full, then ye shall assemble in some secret place and adore the spirit of me, who am Queen of all Witcheries.
There shall ye assemble, ye who are fain to learn all sorcery, yet have not yet won its deepest secrets: to these will I teach things that are yet unknown.

And ye shall be free from slavery; and as a sign that ye are really free, ye shall be naked in your rites; and ye shall dance, sing, feast, make music and love, all in my praise.

For mine is the ecstasy of the spirit and mine also is joy on earth; for my Law is Love unto all Beings.

Keep pure your highest ideal; strive ever toward it; let naught stop you or turn you aside.

For mine is the secret door which opens upon the Land of Youth; and mine is the Cup of the Wine of Life, and the Cauldron of Cerridwen, which is the Holy Grail of Immortality.

I am the Gracious Goddess, who gives the gift of joy unto the heart. Upon earth, I give the knowledge of the spirit eternal; and beyond death, I give peace, and freedom, and reunion with those who have gone before. Nor do I demand sacrifice, for behold I am the Mother of All Living, and my love is poured out upon the earth.

Hear ye the words of the Star Goddess, she in the dust of whose feet are the hosts of heaven; whose body encircleth the Universe; I, who am the beauty of the green earth, and the white Moon among the stars, and the mystery of the waters, and the heart’s desire, call unto thy soul. Arise and come unto me.

For I am the Soul of Nature, who giveth life to the universe; from me all things proceed, and unto me must all things return; and before my face, beloved of gods and mortals, thine inmost divine self shall be unfolded in the rapture of infinite joy.

Let my worship be within the heart that rejoiceth, for behold: all acts of love and pleasure are my rituals. And therefore let there be beauty and strength, power and compassion, honour and humility, mirth and reverence within you.

And thou who thinkest to seek for me, know thy seeking and yearning shall avail thee not, unless thou know this mystery: that if that which thou seekest thou findest not within thee, thou wilt never find it without thee.

For behold, I have been with thee from the beginning; and I am that which is attained at the end of desire.

Sunday, July 31, 2016

Lammas, Eve of Dark Moon

Lammas is a time of Highland Games and other acts of prowess and power of the Sun before it starts to show its waning. For this double event of the Sabbat and the Dark Moon, I like to honor the WARRIOR!

Lammas is a time of grain harvest and bread baking. Also, corn roasts. Twice a year I like to do Celtic Blessing Bread. This is one of those times. I would like to share the recipe I have.

So easy, versatile, and delicious! This is a perfect addition to any Lammas Sabbat celebration.

In honor of the Warrior (such as the Morrighan and Scathach, Lugh and many many others), The Dark Moon ritual will be a time to infuse our weapons of choice with the energy of the Dark Moon: powerful, introspective, honorable, thoughtful, and clear-cutting.

Monday, July 25, 2016


Pagan elders and leaders, event and ritual organizers often suffer and are rushing downhill to this thing called BURNOUT that no one wants to look at or believe can happen, to the self or to others. There are not many leaders of anything and fewer willing to help or be fully prepared to step up to the plate and do for a leader who needs a break. So, leaders dare not take a break or go through tremendous feelings of guilt when they do.

But what IS burnout and what happens to someone suffering it?

BURNOUT: physical or mental collapse caused by overwork or stress, a state of chronic stress that leads to a number of symptoms (listed below)

Burnout causes a number of things, variable from person to person.
  • tiredness / unending exhaustion / chronic fatigue
  • irritability
  • frequent illness
  • feeling overwhelmed by even small things
  • odd bodily reactions
  • rashes
  • frequent illnesses
  • shutting people out
  • ranting and "overly dramatic reactions"
  • taking things far too personally
  • lashing out unexpectedly
  • forgetfulness
  • callousness / lack of emotional connection
  • insomnia
  • impaired concentration and attention
  • loss of appetite / overeating
  • dizziness, fainting, headaches
  • shortness of breath or heart palpitations
  • anxiety
  • depression
  • irrational anger
  • poor performance on various levels
 That is a whole lot of scary stuff. It is good to have someone you trust who can be frank with you, and accept your moods without being easily hurt; someone who can watch for if you start to show signs of burning out and can address the issue with you. Ideally, this person can do this BEFORE you have burned bridges in the friend department or the professional world and BEFORE you ruin your own reputation.

You are a human BEing... not a human DOing.

An excellent website that discusses burnout and how to cope is:

Here are some tips for survival:
  • have some OTHER things to do that you enjoy
  • give yourself "grace moments" or find a personal day weekly.
  • go learn something (as it is receiving and not giving)
  • set limits for yourself and say NO sometimes
  • don't take responsibility for other peoples hurt/upset feelings; not everyone is going to like everything
  • delegate (in parts to wean people onto a team); teach your successor
  • plan around your schedule (KNOW your schedule and do not double/triple book yourself)
  • let go, let negativity roll off
  • do personal internal work regularly
  • stay calm
  • meditate, with a group
  • you don't have to LIKE everyone (but be mature enough to be able to work with them and accept that you do not like them)
  • give yourself permission to have/do nice things once in a while
  • have a safe person to vent with
  • have an outlet
  • ask for help (and show appreciation for it)
  • reduce the stuff on your plate (especially cut away the things that are not beneficial to your life)
  • have a sense of humor
  • pat yourself on the back for your achievements
  • pace yourself
  • get some SLEEP
  • identify the strengths of others and nurture them 
  • create a manual for the future
  • have a clear vision (for the group, event, yourself)
  • Have someone look out for you (assign someone to be your keeper, especially during big events)
  • don't hang out with people who effect you negatively
  • do what you love / love what you do
 On this last note, here is a video:

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Creating Sacred Space


When creating a personal sanctuary, a space that feels sacred for your spiritual or magical work, you should always start with the  self. All magic begins with YOU. You are divine. Your body is your temple, your first tool, the home of your sacred soul.

Sacred Self:
Cleanse the self with a sacred bath or simply a shower.
Purify yourself with a smudging incense of your choice.
Bless yourself with holy water, anointing oil, or the five-fold kiss.

Five-fold Kiss:
Blessed be my feet (touch your feet)
     that walk the sacred path
Blessed be my knees (touch your knees)
     that kneel at the sacred altar
Blessed be my loins (place hands over phallus or womb)
     from which springs forth pleasure and life
Blessed be my breast (place hands over your heart)
     formed in beauty and in strength
Blessed be my lips (kiss your fingertips)
     that utter the sacred words
Blessed be all of me (brush your hands over yourself from crown to toes)

Now you are ready to create sacred space...


Creating Sacred Space:
Start by choosing the place you want to use as sacred space.
Cleansing is to physically clean it and set it up for how you wish it to look or be used.
Cleaning the space should be done in the direction of banishing.
Purify the space by removing any negative energy. There are lots of ways to do this.
You can smudge the space, energetically sweep it with a besom, use rattles or chimes.
Purifying the space should be done in the direction of banishing.
Blessing is the third step in creating sacred space.
Blessing the space is to bring positive energy into it, or to fill the space with the energy for its purpose or use.
You can bless the space with holy water, a sacred incense, the 4 elements, a lit candle.
There are many ways to bless a space. Even bringing in something fresh and new works (flowers).
Blessing a space should be done in the direction of creative energy.

Now the space is fit for use for any spiritual activity.

Saturday, July 2, 2016

Dark Moon Ritual for All

Purify yourself and your space with an incense of your choice.
Bless yourself and your space with Holy Water.
Create Sacred Space by lighting a candle in the center of the altar.

Cast circle.

Dark moons are times for banishing, letting go, and introspection.
Quarters and deities or totems could be called, but not necessarily  as this is a very personal ritual. This is time for you to be with YOU.

Sit comfortably and close your eyes. Just breathe and relax in the silence. Allow the chaos of the month, the week, the day, to fall away. Just breathe.

Let go of whatever weighs you down this month.
Listen to your inner self for what you need in your life right now and how to go about achieving that goal or necessity.

Thank yourself.

Incense - sandalwood, benzoin, myrrh, vanilla,  or rose (or herbal resin for the Dark Moon)
Holy Water - 3 cups of spring water with three pinches of sea salt and 1 teaspoon of orange blossom water
Candle - white, black, blue, or violet

Drink a comforting tea afterwards. A good tea would be Monk's Blend.