“She is the Mother, She laces his vest, she sets his sword, She kisses him goodbye, knowing his fate. But wait!” “She is the Lover, She laces his breast, she sets his flail, She kisses him goodbye, closing the door. There’s more!” “She is the Crone, Old and gray, She watches as he fades away,Read more
“Let the celebration begin!” he exclaimed as he entered the grand ballroom lined with party goers. He had been anticipating this evening from the moment that Yule chimed in the New Year. Though immortal, Mercury was aware of the passage of time in the mortal world. A moment such as this must be noted, heRead more
My name is Maria ‘Peacock’ Barrett and I am a WITCH! I was raised in an atypical family where I was encouraged by example to stretch my boundaries and embrace nature, as well as other cultures and traditions from around the globe. Although my parents were raised as Protestants, I was exposed as a child to alternative ideasRead more
Until this spring, when I went off on the road to promote my book ‘Reflections: Grimoire of a Modern Witch”, I had been facilitating a New Moon Sister Circle here in Dayton, using the tools provided to me by the Unify Global Sisterhood Circle as my reference for teaching and meditation tools. As a facilitator,Read more
Today’s card is the Twelve of Water, also known as the Warrior of Water (Cups), the Goddess Cerridwen. In a traditional tarot deck, this card would be known as the Knight of Cups; in the modern world, the Knight card can represent a man or woman and, in the case of the Shapeshifter deck, the Warrior card is a symbol of an actual person who comes to your rescue, riding into your life in the nick of time. The element of Water is associated with the emotions and rules over romantic love, friendship, compassion, healing, cleansing, and self-love, and is associated with all bodies of water and the creatures that live within. Like fire, water has the power to give life and to take it, and it is the direction of the Moon which controls the tides of the Earth itself.
The Goddess Cerridwen (Kerridwen) is also known as the White Lady and the Moon Goddess in Celtic lore; the Welsh bards such as Taliesin called themselves Cerrdorion, sons of Cerridwen as it was said that each of them must meet with her in the Otherworld through shapeshifting and astral travel and seek inspiration and power before they could be accepted into the bardic brotherhood. Cerridwen is also known as the Crone aspect of the Triple Goddess, representing death and rebirth but also magickal knowledge, inspiration, and shapeshifting as is represented by the swirling vortex behind this osprey/woman’s head.
Seen here, the Goddess is merging with an osprey, a symbol of clear-sightedness, memories of past lives, messages through dreams, boldness, wisdom, and new life. The black cauldron from which she rises signifies the eternal, creating abyss of the Goddess’ womb; the cauldron itself appears to be sitting or floating on a calm sea of universal possibilities. A white rose, representing spiritual achievement, rests calmly on the water. Stars act as spiritual beacons to guide the initiate or seeker on the journey through the subconscious. They are splashed across the black night sky as well as the rose, cauldron, and sea. This reminds us that the realm between chaos and the cosmos can appear dark and formidable without guidance from the Goddess; this reminds that it’s also the place where time and all creations come into being.
A period of renewal and vast changes are at hand. These changes can move you into a new and better life path if you are paying attention; be alert, listen to your intuition, and have courage. Go directly to the Source for guidance when you feel uncertain or you could find yourself in a state of upheaval. Guidance and inspiration come to you in unexpected ways. Also, watch your dreams closely for they will provide clues to your future.
May you be blessed by a champion of the heart to give you courage on this day and always!
An athame (pronounced: ath-uh-may) is a ritual blade used in the modern Witchcraft tradition. The term “Athame” comes from the ancient tome, Grimoire: The Key of Solomon the King. In Wicca, it is usually a black-handled ritual knife with a double sided blade. Its purpose is strictly symbolic and, as such, the blade is usually straight and dull. The athame is reserved for ritual use only and the act of cutting herbs, rope/cord, or carving runes or symbols, is usually performed with a separate knife known as a boline, often having a white handle and sharp blade.
While the athame has come to represent the Element of Fire among practitioners of Wicca and several other Witchcraft traditions, practitioners of Ceremonial/Ritual Magick & followers of the Western Mystery Traditions including the Golden Dawn and others, still attribute the athame as well as the Ritual Sword, to the Element of Air (this corresponds with the attributions/correspondences of the various suits in the more traditional Tarot decks.
The Athame represents the male aspect of divinity and can be used to cast or ‘cut’ a circle during ritual as well as to direct energy in much the same way as a wand. Because of its phallic shape, it is often used in the symbolic version of the Great Rite, a celebration of the Union (mating/merging) of the God and Goddess that is believed by some to have created the Universe and all things within it. This ceremony involves dipping the blade of the Athame (representing the male sex organ) into the ceremonial Chalice or Cauldron (representing the womb of the Goddess), symbolizing the act of intercourse and paying honor to them on Beltane (May 1st). In ancient times, this would ensure healthy crops, fertile herds, and successful pregnancies and childbirth. In more modern times, this would ensure success in love and finance and lend strength and courage to our journey while offering our gratitude to the Divine for all our blessings.
Eros appears in ancient Greek sources under several different guises. In the earliest sources, he is one of the primordial gods involved in the coming into being of the cosmos. But in later sources, Eros is represented as the son of Aphrodite, whose mischievous interventions in the affairs of gods and mortals cause bonds of love to form, often illicitly. Eros was associated with athleticism, with statues erected in Gymnasia and “was often regarded as the protector of homosexual love between men. Eros was depicted as often carrying a lyre or bow and arrow. He was also depicted accompanied by dolphins, flutes, roosters, roses, and torches, thus the statement ‘carrying a torch’ for your intended lover.
The story of Eros and Psyche has a longstanding tradition as a folktale of the ancient Greco-Roman world long before it was committed to literature in the novel, The Golden Ass. The novel itself is written in a picaresque Roman style, yet Psyche retains her Greek name. Eros and Aphrodite are called by their Latin names (Cupid and Venus), and Cupid is depicted as a young adult, rather than a child.
The story tells of the struggle for love and trust between Eros and Psyche. Aphrodite was jealous of the beauty of mortal princess Psyche, as men were leaving her altars barren to worship a mere human woman instead, and so she commanded her son Eros, the god of love, to cause Psyche to fall in love with the ugliest creature on earth. But instead, Eros falls in love with Psyche himself and spirits her away to his home. Their fragile peace is ruined by a visit from Psyche’s jealous sisters, who cause Psyche to betray the trust of her husband. Wounded, Eros leaves his wife, and Psyche wanders the Earth, looking for her lost love. Eventually, she approaches Aphrodite and asks for her help. Aphrodite imposes a series of difficult tasks on Psyche, which she is able to achieve by means of supernatural assistance.
After successfully completing these tasks, Aphrodite relents and Psyche becomes immortal to live alongside her husband Eros. Together they had a daughter, Voluptas or Hedone (meaning physical pleasure, bliss), the origin of the word ‘hedonist’.
One minor wound, inflicted by Eros’ (Cupid’s) arrow, was said to bestow the undying love of the injured party upon the next person whom their eyes would see. This led to many a tail of untimely love affairs amongst the Gods and Goddesses of Olympus!
My name is Maria ‘Peacock’ Barrett and I am a WITCH! I was raised in an atypical family where I was encouraged by example to stretch my boundaries and embrace nature, as well as other cultures and traditions from around the globe. Although my parents were raised as Protestants, I was exposed as a child to alternative ideas ranging from Taoism and Buddhism to transcendental meditation and tarot card reading. As I got older, we occasionally attended a Unitarian Universalist church. I was also exposed in limited doses to Catholicism, Judaism, and a cult called The Way. None of these seemed to fit.
As an adult, the idea of Paganism was introduced to me by a friend. I was immediately drawn to it and its focus on Nature and the interconnection between mankind and the Divine. I was also moved by its astonishing honesty and atmosphere of non-judgment, of trust and love. Since 1989, I have never looked back or regretted my decision to place my feet on this path.