Ms Faith

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Mistletoe as part of the Christmas/Yuletide festivities




 Good Afternoon,

The small, unassuming mistletoe has a vast history that goes back to the first century A.D. when the Celtic Druids would harvest it from old oak trees. There is a legend that the druids would hold a  white cloth underneath an oak tree while one would climb the tree and cut the mistletoe with little gold knives. The mistletoe would drop into the cloth, thus never touching the ground. It was then used as a cure all for all sorts of illnesses and maladies. It was a plant from 'between the worlds' which made it sacred.

By being 'between the worlds' means it was an air plant. It didn't need sol to grow. It grew on branches of the Oak tree, deriving it's nutrients from the tree and from the air around it. Thus being an 'in-between' being. The druids felt anything in-between was sacred. Such as ice. It's water, but it's a solid. Mist or fog, also water but it acts as air. The time of day which is midnight. That stroke of midnight isn't today, nor is it quite tomorrow. All of these things were considered 'between the worlds'.

Mistletoe also had the ability to bloom in the dead of winter, showing an evergreen, living ability when surrounded by the cold, harsh, death of winter. This made it extra special for the druids. 

Some time in the Middle Ages, mistletoe was brought into the Christmas holiday festivities. At first it was used by the servant classes and used to procure a kiss from an unsuspecting female who happened to be standing directly underneath a sprig of mistletoe. It was considered bad luck to refuse the kiss. After a kiss was had, a white berry was removed from the sprig. This kept on until all the white berries were removed then a new sprig had to be used.  Soon mistletoe moved into the upper classes and remains to this day a part of this holiday's festivities.

Be careful if you use mistletoe as it is poisonous to pets and people alike.

Happy Yuletide and Merry Christmas to you!!


Peace and Happiness





© 2010-2014 Faith M. McCann. Portions of this blog posting may include materials from my book “Enchantments School for the Magickal Arts First Year Magickal Studies.” For more information, see www.enchantmentsschool.com or go to the title of tonight's discussion and click, it will link you to my school's website. Please note that the copying and/or further distribution of this work without express written permission is prohibited. 

 If you know someone who would like my work, please send them this link. If you or they would like to be included on our daily email distribution list send me an e mail with your email address to be included. If you ever wish to unsubscribe to this blog, please contact me and you will be immediately removed from our list.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Yuletide Blessings



Season's Greetings!

A recent debate has come to light in the past few years. How to extend holiday wishes to others. Some want, nay demand! Merry Christmas! Others want to hear Happy Holidays or Season's Greetings. Me? Haha, I am happy to extend to you the greeting you desire. I find it easier to respond in kind when someone extends me holiday greetings. If someone says "Merry Christmas" I say it back to them.

It makes people happy and avoids holiday discord. I mean, really? Does it matter? Truly? I'm just happy to receive a smile and a greeting from another person. If they say Happy Holidays, I'll say it back. Some people say, it was always Christmas, so Christmas it remains. Well .   .   .  to be historically accurate .   .   .  it was originally Yule or Yuletide.

You see the Ancients celebrated the middle of winter, Yule, (The winter solstice December 20-24th) by bringing into the house evergreens, which spoke of life during the cold, bitter, snowy 'death' of winter. The reds and greens were colors favored by the Celts.  There was a feast day, as is customary for a Sabbat, and gift giving became popular over the centuries as people remembered one another during this festive time.

The May pole decorated during the May Day festival became the Yule Log which was burned in the village center to bring in the light, during this dark time of the year. The darkest, as the winter solstice marks the longest night, shortest day of the year. Right after the solstice, the days start to become just a little bit longer, although imperceptibly so to begin with.  Traditionally a bit of unburned Yule log is saved from the previous year to light the fire for this year's Yule log. This is done year after year, magickally keeping the energies of the Yuletide celebrations ongoing.

A witch celebrates this holiday much as everyone else does. We have Yule trees and wreaths. We bake cookies and cakes. We have feasts or dinners with everyone's favorite foods. It's a form of sympathetic magick to have a table full of abundance. Fancy foods, sweets, delicacies which then represent the abundance to be had during the coming year.

It's a good thing to clean your house before the holiday, get rid of accumulated trash and unwanted items, bringing in fresh foods, new items and a show of abundance with presents under the tree and plenty of special items. Sweets, delicacies and special items you normally wouldn't have, bring in during the holiday. It will reflect back on you during the year with abundance and plenty coming your way.

I wish you a beautiful holiday season!  Ms. Faith 


© 2010-2014 Faith M. McCann. Portions of this blog posting may include materials from my book “Enchantments School for the Magickal Arts First Year Magickal Studies.” For more information, see www.enchantmentsschool.com or go to the title of tonight's discussion and click, it will link you to my school's website. Please note that the copying and/or further distribution of this work without express written permission is prohibited. 

 If you know someone who would like my work, please send them this link. If you or they would like to be included on our daily email distribution list send me an e mail with your email address to be included. If you ever wish to unsubscribe to this blog, please contact me and you will be immediately removed from our list.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

How to charge, consecrate or bless magickal items

The Earth's Magic Circle - The Northern Lights. A picture taken by NASA from space of the Northern Lights on Earth

Good Afternoon,

Do you have a new athame, wand, talisman or amulet you'd like to consecrate? Just about any tool used in magick can be cleansed, consecrated, charged or blessed so it has just the energies you want in it. There are several ways to do this and some are more challenging than others.

One way is to cast a circle and while inside the circle take your item and run it through the incense smoke, then sprinkle some blessed water on it then touch it briefly to the candle flame.  Another method is to take your item and place it on the altar pentacle and let it sit there for a few minutes. That's all you need to do.

Some traditional methods of consecrating a tool is to place it under the full moon for an hour or so. In my research, to do this be sure to do it outside, as the energies of the sun or moon through window glass loses much of it's magickal energy.  You may also place your item under the full sun for an hour or so. Holding the item in a running stream of natural water is also good, though a bit more challenging to accomplish without losing the item.

A way suggested to me from a magickal friend recently was to place the items on the floor, along the magick circle you cast. Such as magickal stones and such. Place them along the line where your boundary of the magick circle would be and conduct your ritual. Pick them up after you finish the ritual and they will be charged and very strongly emanate the energies from the circle.

These are some methods for charging your tools and items to be used in magickal practice. I am also careful of using anything that has been owned previously. Some items may have a good energy in them, some may not. If you wish to use an older, previously owned item, hold it and sit with it for  few moments and get a sense of it's energy. If it feels good to you, use it and consecrate it as described above. If the energy doesn't feel right, don't try to change it, just put the item aside and don't bring it home. It's not meant for you.

I hope these magickal tips prove helpful to you as your journey along your magickal path.


Peace and Happiness


 © 2010-2014 Faith M. McCann. Portions of this blog posting may include materials from my book “Enchantments School for the Magickal Arts First Year Magickal Studies.” For more information, see www.enchantmentsschool.com or go to the title of tonight's discussion and click, it will link you to my school's website. Please note that the copying and/or further distribution of this work without express written permission is prohibited.

 If you know someone who would like my work, please send them this link. If you or they would like to be included on our daily email distribution list send me an e mail with your email address to be included. If you ever wish to unsubscribe to this blog, please contact me and you will be immediately removed from our list.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Offerings to Deity and Santa's Milk and Cookies


Good Afternoon,

Often in the practice of the Wiccan religion we have a practice of making an "offering". I've been asked to explain this. First an offering is something 'given' in thanks to the Gods or Deity. An offering can be a piece of bread or cake, a chalice of wine or drink. Of course the actual offering isn't consumed but the 'essence' of the gift is considered received by the Gods/Goddess in thanks for their being in our lives.

You can burn a candle as an offering, offer up a gift made of natural materials, such as a wreath or spray of flowers. Giving thanks with an offering is a centuries old tradition, such as with votive candles (the squat chunky candles), the name comes from a votive offering which means offered or consecrated in fulfillment of a vow.

The lighting of candles at one time were done to thank the Gods/Goddesses/Saints for their involvement in our lives. Then lighting candles to pray for a person became popular.

A tradition at Christmas that is more secular than religious today is the offering of cookies and milk to Santa Claus who at one time was known as Father Christmas or St. Nicholas. Many still do this holiday tradition without realizing they are participating in a centuries old tradition.

I wish everyone a magickal, happy and healthy Thanksgiving Holiday.


Peace and Happiness







© 2010-2014 Faith M. McCann. Portions of this blog posting may include materials from my book “Enchantments School for the Magickal Arts First Year Magickal Studies.” For more information, see www.enchantmentsschool.com or go to the title of tonight's discussion and click, it will link you to my school's website. Please note that the copying and/or further distribution of this work without express written permission is prohibited. 

 If you know someone who would like my work, please send them this link. If you or they would like to be included on our daily email distribution list send me an e mail with your email address to be included. If you ever wish to unsubscribe to this blog, please contact me and you will be immediately removed from our list.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Journey to the Center of the Earth Meditation





Good Afternoon,

The following is a meditation that I wrote and  I read to my students. It's designed to help you meet your spirit guide. To best use this meditation, have someone read it to you while meditating, or read it into a tape recorder and play it back to you.

To begin, sit in a comfortable chair, legs uncrossed and hands at your sides. Breathe in slowly through your nose and exhale slowly through your mouth. Keeping your eyes closed allow yourself to see the images in your mind's eye as you hear the meditation being read to you. Be sure you are comfortable and then begin.

Journey to the Center of the Earth Meditation

Imagine you are standing outside a large stone, medieval castle. The walls looms above you. It's a huge and ancient fortress. There is a door set into the wall in front of you. Walk through the doorway into the coolness of the castle. You see before you a staircase descending into the depths of the castle. Start walking down the stairs, still remembering to breathe through your nose and mouth, slowly and gently as you descend lower and lower into the belly of the castle.

You go down step after step, feeling more and more relaxed, your whole body is getting lighter and lighter. You keep walking down the stairs, going deeper and deeper, lower and lower, getting lighter and lighter. Still breathing gently in, gently out. Lower, deeper, lighter. Lower, deeper, lighter.

You've descended many, many floors down into the belly of the castle, you continue to go lower knowing you must be in the caves that run beneath the castle. You start to hear dripping water and the air smells dank and moist.

You continue down and notice the walls are slimy and covered with green algae. The stairs are wet and just as you are afraid of your footing, the stairs end and you walk out through an archway that opens into a cave that has a beautiful, deep blue-green lake in the middle.

You see a boat bobbing up and down along the edge of the lake, then you walk over to the boat and get in. It is a magickal boat, as soon as you settle yourself and get comfortable the boat begins to move on it's own. It starts to glide gently across the water to the other side of this sub-terrarium lake. It reaches the other side and gently bumps up against the far shore. You now get out of the boat to continue on your quest.  You look along the walls of the cavern and you see an opening. Go to the opening and duck your head as you enter a narrow passageway. Walk along the passageway and notice it gets darker and ever more narrow as you walk along.

Trail your right hand along the wall until you feel a slight opening in the rock. It's a crack in the rock and it magickally opens so it is just big enough for you to fit through. Squeeze through and find yourself in a small cave. It seems lit with a phosphorescence that allows you to see perfectly well, this far below the earth. Look around the cave. What is there?

Do you see the ancient pirates chest sitting on a soft bed of white sand? It's right up against the farthest wall of the cave. See it there?  Inside is something that is meant for you. Go to the chest and open it, see a large bunch of fabric piled on top. Pull this fabric up and see that it is a cloak. Get to your feet and bring the cloak with you. Put the cloak on, swinging it over your shoulders. Now notice along the far wall of the cave there is another opening. Much larger than the last one that you squeezed into the get into this cave. Do you see it? There is someone waiting for you inside. It will be a spirit guide. It may come to you in human form, animal form or creature form. Now with your cloak wrapped around you, lift high your head and go through the opening into the larger cave.

See as you enter a cave far larger and more glorious than you could have imagined. See how this cave glitters on all walls with gold pyrite, veins of real gold and silver, the walls studded with diamonds, crystal, amethysts, emeralds, sapphires and rubies. Crystal stalactites and stalagmites flow up from the floor and hang down from the roof of the cave. The whole cave is lit with a mysterious luminescence allowing you to see everything clearly.

It is truly an underground palace of earthly treasures. Look around and see two thrones, one of silver and one of gold. Now notice a being seated in one of the thrones. You may walk over and be seated in the other throne. Introduce yourself and ask your spirit guide it's name.  (give a few moments pause for this exchange)

You may have a brief conversation with this spirit guide. Ask what you need to ask and listen for it's answer. (Also pause at this time for a few moments for this conversation to happen)

At this time you must continue your quest, say farewell to your spirit guide and thank it for it's time. Know that you can visit your spirit guide through meditation at anytime in the future should you wish to.

After you have taken leave of your spirit guide, go back through the opening of the smaller cave. Remember the pirates chest? Find it again and go over to it. Sink down upon the soft white sand and open the chest. Push back the top and look inside. There inside, underneath where your cloak was, is a gift to you from your spirit guide. Take it out. Look at it carefully and rise. Be sure to take the item with you.

Go back through the narrow opening and squeeze back through. You will turn left out of the cave to go back from whence you came. Go back along the dark, narrow passageway using your hand as a guide until you get back to the lake with the boat. See it waiting for you. Settle back into the boat and feel it gently start to glide along to bring you back to the far shore where you started your journey.  After the boat bumps to a halt, get out, remember to bring your gift back with you.

Look for the archway to the staircase and start to climb the stairs. You are walking up the stairs going higher and higher. You feel relaxed, happy and excited. Continue up and notice the walls becoming drier, grayer and the stone is cold and rough to the touch. Continue up the stairs feeling the air becoming drier and lighter.  You continue up feeling very happy, relaxed and looking forward to the sunshine and the feel of soft breezes on your face. You are almost at the top of the stairs, remember what your spirit guide spoke with you about.

Walk out of the castle and see the beautiful blue skies and feel the soft summer breeze on your face. The grass is green, sweet and soft. Find a place to sit in the grass, look at the item you brought back with you. Lay back, close your eyes and when you are ready, open your eyes and be back in the current time.

The meditation is over.

Try this meditation to meet your spirit guide. I wrote this myself and my students have had very good results with it. Enjoy!


Peace and Happiness


 

© 2010-2014 Faith M. McCann. Portions of this blog posting may include materials from my book “Enchantments School for the Magickal Arts First Year Magickal Studies.” For more information, see www.enchantmentsschool.com or go to the title of tonight's discussion and click, it will link you to my school's website. Please note that the copying and/or further distribution of this work without express written permission is prohibited.

 If you know someone who would like my work, please send them this link. If you or they would like to be included on our daily email distribution list send me an e mail with your email address to be included. If you ever wish to unsubscribe to this blog, please contact me and you will be immediately removed from our list.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

How a Witch prepares for Winter



Good Afternoon,

Well, Samhain/ Halloween is behind us and Winter beckons. There are things that need to be done to prepare for the upcoming dark half of the year.

It's time to cut and dry any last herbs and medicinal/magickal plants you might still have left in your garden. hang them in a dark (out of the sunlight) spot and let them dry for a week or two before puttig them away in jars for the winter.

Gather all of your used candles and have them ready to use for rituals and spellcasting, trying to use them up before Imbolc in February when we replace all of our old candles with new ones.

Take the ribbons off of your Maypole and burn them, if you haven't already done this at Samhain. Then replace them with ribbons colored silver, purple and black to honor the winter months.

Trim down garden grasses, ornamentals, and discard the cuttings or place at the edge of a wood line so birds can use the grasses for nest building and repair. Also place outside, in small clumps, dryer lint so birds can line their nests for the upcoming cold winter.

Get your bird feeders and seed ready for winter. If you have a bird bath you can put a small heater in it, the kind made for bird baths, to keep the water liquid during cold snaps.

These are just a few of the things a witch needs to do to properly prepare for the upcoming winter. The winter is a time of rest, rejuvenation and renewal. Getting ready for winter before the snow flies will give you a sense of accomplishment and make you ready both physically and spiritually.

Peace and Happiness





© 2010-2014 Faith M. McCann. Portions of this blog posting may include materials from my book “Enchantments School for the Magickal Arts First Year Magickal Studies.” For more information, see www.enchantmentsschool.com or go to the title of tonight's discussion and click, it will link you to my school's website. Please note that the copying and/or further distribution of this work without express written permission is prohibited.

 If you know someone who would like my work, please send them this link. If you or they would like to be included on our daily email distribution list send me an e mail with your email address to be included. If you ever wish to unsubscribe to this blog, please contact me and you will be immediately removed from our list.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Some traditional dishes to serve this Samhain ( Halloween)






Good Afternoon,

Yes, it's that spooky time of year again. Halloween or what we Celtic Druid's call Samhain, pronounced (Sow-en). I've gone over the history of Halloween with you before and shared spooky stories of hauntings and spirits, so today I'm going to talk with you about the feasts of Samhain and what they encompass.  

The ancient Druid's consumed the sacred Swine, or pig meat for their Sabbat feasts.  A nice pork roast served with apples is a traditional harvest dish. I, as a matter of fact, just had a wonderful pork roast dinner the other night with loved ones and it really was delicious.  Root vegetables are predominant during harvest season so serving potatoes, turnips, beets, as well as cabbages and brussel sprouts are also tasty and timely.

Cooking potatoes with cabbage (Colcannon) is  traditional Celtic-Irish dish served with lots of sweet butter. Roasting root vegetables is a wonderful way of bringing out the Autumnal flavors of the season. Remember to serve all meals with bread as the harvest Sabbats are reminiscent of harvesting the grains from the fields and bread was a primary staple for the ancients when they had a bountiful harvest.

One type of traditional feast was called the Dumb Supper. Samhain is a 'Memorial Day' for us, a day of the dead if you will, remembering those who have passed on. One way of remembering those loved ones is by serving an entire dinner with all of the guests refraining from speaking at all. Everything, from serving the food, consuming it and cleaning up afterwards was done in total silence. This is to honor those who can no longer speak with us on this side of the veil.

A less somber way of honoring those who have passed on is to serve a dinner, talking allowed, and have a single plate set aside for those who have passed on. Be sure to place on the plate a sampling of the foods available along with a drink. No one is to touch the plate or chalice of drink as the dinner or party progresses. They are there for the spirits to partake of. Now, of course, they don't actually eat or drink the offerings, but it is believed that they intake of the essence of the food and drink. After the dinner is over the food and drink can be discarded, but not eaten by the living.

A delightful dish for the dessert portion of the feast can be an apple pie or cups of homemade applesauce with dollops of whipped creme' on them. Having something sweet brings the importance of living life fully to the forefront.

I hope you have a delightfully spooky Halloween/Samhain. Celebrate, honor those who have passed on and live life to the fullest.  This is my Samhain wish for you!


Peace and Happiness





© 2010-2014 Faith M. McCann. Portions of this blog posting may include materials from my book “Enchantments School for the Magickal Arts First Year Magickal Studies.” For more information, see www.enchantmentsschool.com or go to the title of tonight's discussion and click, it will link you to my school's website. Please note that the copying and/or further distribution of this work without express written permission is prohibited.

 If you know someone who would like my work, please send them this link. If you or they would like to be included on our daily email distribution list send me an e mail with your email address to be included. If you ever wish to unsubscribe to this blog, please contact me and you will be immediately removed from our list.