Musings of the leonine flitterby

The Pagan Experience

The Pagan ExperienceI’m a bit late getting to the party, but one of the things that I’d like to do this year is to write more.  Blogging is an excellent way to help out with the amount of writing.  I’m still doing classes at Cherry Hill Seminary, as well as working on my advanced study programs for the ADF, so this is an addition.  But the blog is where I get to write about whatever I want, where I am constrained in the reading and writing.

To help keep me on track with writing, I’m going to join up with the Pagan Experience.  I’ve tried before to do the Pagan Blog Prompt series, but I get hung up on what to write.  With the somewhat more directed prompts of the Pagan Experience, I’m hoping that I can keep on track.  We will see. I have set myself daily word limits – not very high I’ll admit – but, hopefully, that will help to keep me somewhat on track.

The Job Hunt Spell

A few years ago – before this blog was really a thing, I was in a situation where I needed a new job.  I didn’t have one at the time, but I had some savings so I wasn’t desperate to take any job, I wanted one that fit me.  To help me focus and to help get me job I did a little magic.

For folks who are looking for a job, here’s what I did.  May it help you to find a job that suits you!

Preparation

Before starting the spellwork, I gathered together a bag suitable for putting coins and paper money into, a large green candle, a 2″x2″ (5cm x 5cm) piece of paper, a pen and a candle holder for the candle.  If incense helps you to focus, get some that reflect money, or focus, or intent.

NOTE: if you need a job in a hurry, a candle in a color that means quick energy to you might be useful.  For me, that would be orange.  Your colors may vary.

Create your Focus

Find a sentence that fits what you want to do .. “find a job that supports my family,” “find a job that fits my need for x,” etc.  If you have a very specific need, make sure that you included it.  Remember to be specific on definite needs you have … minimum salaries, personal needs you have, but not on what the job is or where it is – give the universe room to work.

Using your prefered method of making a sigil or bindrune, make one that fits that sentence.  Once you have your sigil, re-draw it on the  piece of paper.

Create a chant that reflects your sentence.  Make sure that you use the present tense as if you had already found your job.  For example, if your sentence was “I need to find a job that supports my family,” then your chant could be “Have a job / Fill our bellies / Clothe our bodies / Keep us safe”  or whatever works for you.

Do the spell every day

While you are hunting for a job, start your morning out by doing the spell to set your intention for the day.

If you have incense, light your incense.  Focus on your sigil for a few moments.  Remember what you are looking for and why you need this job.  Take a dollar, or a few coins, or whatever you can afford of real money and put it in the pouch.  Focus on that money multiplying to meet your needs, focus on being happy and knowing that your job is out there.

Light the candle and start your chant.  Depending on what you feel comfortable with, repeat the chant 7 or 9 times, or until you feel the energy and focus building within you.  Send that energy out to find your job and show it to you!

Repeat this spell every morning until you have started your new job.

Remember that you need to do the mundane work of job hunting, but the universe will help to open doors and show you the way.

Keep your eyes open and look at all the possibilities.  I ended up taking a job that was not my first choice, but it has since lead to me getting a job with an amazing company and given me a lot of wonderful opportunities that I would not have gotten at my first choice.

It’s about Framing

“Framing” may be a term that many of you aren’t familiar with … and since I’ve only heard it in professional management and leadership arenas, I don’t expect you to be. :)

“Framing,” in this context, is about how you phrase things.  If you want to say something that you’re not sure will be taken well, you generally will think about how to present your thoughts in a way that will be accepted – you “frame” it.

Changing how you phrase things works when you’re trying to explain to a coworker that they really should wear less skin tight clothing, or if you’re trying to explain why you should do something to yourself. Yes, framing works on yourself just as well as other people!

For a few years now, I’ve told myself that I want to put more magic in my mundane life.  Today a teacher in a course that I’m taking said that I want to “put my mundane life in my magic.”  Just switching the phrasing around like that … by framing it differently … it was suddenly a whole different prospect.  The focus of the statement changes.

Now I need to think about how I’m going to put more mundane life in my magic.

Review: Visions of Vanaheim

Visions of Vanaheim Book Cover Visions of Vanaheim
Svartesól

Visions of Vanaheim by Svartesól discusses the Vanic side of the Northern Tradition – honoring a race of Gods connected with the fertility of the Earth, from life to death and back again.

This book explores the history of the North and the differences between Aesir and Vanir; the Deities known or suspected to be Vanir and those related by marriage or adoption; rites, magic, and devotion in a Vanic practice, and thoughts on the Vanic way from those who live it.

The Vanir have much to offer the 21st century, and by exploring the mysteries of the Vanir, we can find the sacred in our world.

This is the 2nd edition of the book. The original edition was removed years ago, and now has Svartesól has revised the book and re-written sections of the book. This book is more of an explanation of the author’s personal beliefs than a re-constructionist text. If you’re interested in the Vanir, however, it’s an interesting read.

The book starts out reviewing the different gods and goddesses that the author categorizes as Vanir. He pulls from the different primary sources that we currently have for Norse mythology as well as from personal gnosis.

The rest of the book is mostly from a combination of shared and personal gnosis, and describes the structure of the non-divine residents of Vanaheim – the rulers and the different tribes of folk. Svartesól covers information about the different tribes as well as the rituals that they perform and how to interact with them.

The author is quite good at identifying what is from Personal gnosis, shared gnosis, and from primary sources so you can make your own decisions on what you believe.

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On Returning from the Sacred Grove

"Rio Osun" by Alex Mazzeto - Jurema Oliveira (talk) 18:13, 16 November 2009 (UTC) - Osun-Osogbo Sacred Grove UNESCO. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

“Rio Osun” by Alex Mazzeto

It’s been a few weeks since I returned from my Cherry Hill Seminary Intensive: Into the Sacred Grove. I went to the Intensive expecting days of academic instruction and more than a few glazed-eye moments. What I got was four days of comradery, learning, introspection and new friends.

The Intensive was about taking our domestic life – the things that we make – to the Sacred Grove, where we sacrifice our domesticity and are transformed by the Wild Divine. We spent the days listening to stories, creating stories of our own, sharing with each other and learning together.

We learned about what Sacred Groves where and how they were used in Ancient Greece and Rome. Then we took some time to investigate where the Sacred Groves were in our lives – those places and times where we sacrifice our things, our time, our selves – and how we were, or may be, transformed from the experience.

Since the Intensive, things have definitely been changing for me, both at work and personally. Work is starting to line up so that I can focus more there – which in turn allows me to focus more on my personal stuff.

One of the other cool things that came out of the Intensive was the personal connections that I made. I got to meet two of my current classmates, the professor for my next class at Cherry Hill, two Cherry Hill graduates and a number of the other professors and Deans. For me, it was an opportunity to chat with pagans of a variety of different faiths and practices about things that mattered to us in the pagan world. We could just sit and chat – about whatever we wanted – and all respected each others perspectives and were open to listening about other points of view.

It was a wonderful experience on many different levels!

The Intensives are open up to non-Masters students, so if you get an opportunity, I do recommend that you go.

 

Time for getting intensive

Cherry Hill SeminaryIn a few days, I’m heading out for my first “Intensive” for my Masters degree.

For those who don’t know, I have registered as a Master’s student at Cherry Hill Seminary.  I’m currently in my first semester of my Master’s program, but I have taken classes from Cherry Hill for a few years.  Cherry Hill Seminary offers pagan online training for both Masters students and students who are just interested in learning more about some topics.

Before enrolling in the Master’s program, I took a number of Insights courses – these are 4 week courses that give you a feel for Cherry Hill’s online program and allow you to interact with some awesome pagan folks.  I also found that there was quite a cross section of people in the Insights classes, and it was great getting the different perspectives.

Now that I’m taking longer classes (semesters are 12 weeks) I find that I’m really enjoying them too!  It’s great to be able to dig deeper into a topic, and I have more time to try to think things through during the class rather than afterwards.

As part of the Master’s program, I must attend at least 2 “Intensive” sessions.  These Intensives are in-person sessions where we delve into topics that are more challenging to address online.  I’m attending the first of my intensives this weekend, and I’m really looking forward to it!  It’ll be good to be in-person with some of my fellow students; and it’ll be good to be out of the leader role.  The student brainspace is very different from my professional brainspace, and I’m looking forward to the change!

Mind Power

The power of the mind is an amazing thing. It’s something that is very important for magic workers and divination workers to keep in mind as they do their work. The mind can cause things to happen by changing the way in which we react. Our emotions can overpower our thoughts, but our thoughts can also overpower our emotions and physical reactions.

For instance, a year ago I was diagnosed with a digestive disorder that left me unwilling to eat eggs. Let’s just say that the eggs didn’t like being in my stomach and were pretty definite about it. My hubby and I have considered experimenting with pasteurized eggs, thinking that the pasteurization process might make changes that kill whatever it is that I can’t eat. But the simple thought of eating eggs as just eggs makes my mind remember the physical sensations from when I was eating eggs before – and it wants no part of that reaction again! So without eating anything, my stomach was upset, and I had to take measures to calm it down. All because my mind associates eggs with nausea.

The same thing can happen when you’re doing magic or divination. If you’re not careful, your past experiences can affect your work. If you’re trying to make a change in your situation, and there is something about your mind that is resisting the change – be careful to address that first! The same thing can happen when you’re doing divination. If you see something in the cards that has a specific negative, or positive, association for you then you need to be aware of that and make sure that you’re reacting to the reading, not the association.

There is nothing that I know of that can take the place of taking the time to recognize and understand your reactions to things. Taking this time can significantly improve your ability to do magic or divination!

A Kemetic Devotional to Ma’at

The Scales of Ma'at

The Scales of Ma’at

[Getting back into the swing of PBP!  I may not fill in the missing posts, but I’m going to jump back in and continue forward]

This past weekend, I was pleased to attend a devotional to Ma’at hosted by T. Thorn Coyle of the Solar Cross Temple. Solar Cross hosts devotionals most months and I’ve recently started attending. The devotionals cover a range of different Pagan orientations. Solar Cross itself is rather eclectic, with members from a variety of pagan religions, and the devotionals reflect that.

May’s devotional was a traditional Kemetic ritual designed to honor Ma’at and performed by members of the Kemetic Temple in California. The ritual was very well done, and even included a traditional prayer sung in Ancient Egyptian!
Before this devotional, I had only known of Ma’at in her role of judging the weight of the hearts of the dead to determine what their afterlife would be like. In this devotional, I learned that there is so much more to Ma’at!

In addition to Ma’at the Goddess, there is Ma’at the principle. Ma’at is the balance by which we strive to live our lives. It is the understanding that we all play a part in the bigger picture, and when we play our part well we can effect positive change on others around us. In the same way, if we are particularly negative, it has effects beyond ourselves and can bring negativity to those around us.

One of the priests said something particular interesting. He pointed out that Ma’at weighs our heart against a feather. To live in Ma’at is to live with a light heart. So all those things that we do that weigh down on us, or make our heart heavy, are things we should address. Either we find a way to feel light of heart while doing them, or maybe we don’t need to be doing them.

Review: Hounded – Iron Druid Chronicles Book 1

Hounded Book Cover Hounded
Iron Druid
Kevin Hearne
Urban Fantasy
Del Rey; 4.3.2011 edition (May 3, 2011)
May 3, 2011
Kindle
Amazon.com

Atticus O’Sullivan, last of the Druids, lives peacefully in Arizona, running an occult bookshop and shape-shifting in his spare time to hunt with his Irish wolfhound. His neighbors and customers think that this handsome, tattooed Irish dude is about twenty-one years old—when in actuality, he’s twenty-one centuries old. Not to mention: He draws his power from the earth, possesses a sharp wit, and wields an even sharper magical sword known as Fragarach, the Answerer.

Unfortunately, a very angry Celtic god wants that sword, and he’s hounded Atticus for centuries. Now the determined deity has tracked him down, and Atticus will need all his power—plus the help of a seductive goddess of death, his vampire and werewolf team of attorneys, a sexy bartender possessed by a Hindu witch, and some good old-fashioned luck of the Irish—to kick some Celtic arse and deliver himself from evil.

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Hounded is definitely in the range of popcorn reading for me.  The author does a great job of blending just enough “real” mythology with new and modern twists to keep you interested.  The characters are well written, showing flashes of their true identity while trying to blend into the modern world.  There are very few purely good or evil guys …. and lots of interesting characters in the range between!  The story takes place in a world that could very nearly be real – including most people’s great ability to explain away the unknown.  Hearne takes the world as portrayed in the modern pagan communities and stretches it just enough to hover on the edge of believable.  Once you pick up the book, it’s hard to put down!

Evocation [PBP]

[This is a post for the Pagan Blog Project]
Witch of Endor by Nikolai Ge, 1857.

Witch of Endor by Nikolai Ge, 1857.

Evoke vs Invoke.  It’s an interesting balance.  There’s a whole LOT of grey area between the two words, and that’s without bringing any magical meaning to them!  Since this is the ‘E’ post for PBP, I’m going to focus on ‘evoke’ in this post!

Both words talk about some kind of summoning, but the difference is the involvement of you.  When you evoke something, you call the being to join you, but as an external entity.  It’s not part of you, joined with you, or channeled through you.

For example, when you call in a Gatekeeper in an ADF ritual, or you call the Watchtowers in a Ceremonial ritual, you are evoking the entities to guard and protect your ritual space.  In most rituals, non-human (and previously-human) entities are called in by evoking.  We don’t generally call the beings into ourselves, or to speak through us.

As an example, here’s an evocation for Freyja that I wrote a while back

Lady Freyja, Lover, Warrior,
Leader of the Valkeries
Holder of Brisingamen
We call to you, Lady Chooser,
To lend your aid to us this night

In this evocation, we call upon the Lady Freyja in her aspect as the Chooser of the Slain to assist in the ritual that we’re about to do.

Because we don’t call the entities into ourselves, evoking is significantly safer than invoking, and is much more suitable for beginner magicians!  Write your own evocations, or use someone else’s words, but try it out!

 

References

Evoke & Invoke on grammarist.com
Evoke & Invoke on about.com

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2014 Reading Challenge

2014 Reading Challenge
Victoria has read 1 book toward her goal of 6 books.
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