The most important thing I want people to get out of this book is that the available healing practices and the magical practices around herbs are deeply connected. They have always been connected. This truth was well-known in the ancient world. They really believed that physical ailments were caused by magic and spirits as well as by physical conditions. So for the ancients they needed to be able to treat the mind, the body, and the spirit all at once.,
The chapter on potions goes into this a bit more. In that chapter I explain how remedies like Four Thieves Vinegar, Fire Cider and Carmelite water were used in medicine and in magic. By knowing the medicinal properties of the plants we can learn several of the magical values of the plants. Magic and medicine are connected. They work in connection to create a better life for us.
To illustrate what I am talking about lets talk about one of my favorite spices. Cayenne Pepper. Cayenne pepper when combined with Arnica in a salve makes a powerful pain relief and arthritis relief salve. Cayenne pepper is rich in capsicum which contains the chemical Capcasin. This is a chemical found in many over the counter ointments for arthritis relief.
Cayenne Pepper also works well as an expectorant. When used in cooking if someone with congestion eats Cayenne pepper the mucus will dissolve and they will be able to breathe easy. The mucus will break up and be removed from the system. It is also an anti irritant, which allows cayenne pepper to soothe throats and coughs and colds from allergies.
Magically Cayenne pepper is most well-known for being a protective herb. It’s known to be good in removal work. This herb gets a bad rap for being used in hexes and cures specifically its known for being a key ingredient in Hoot Foot Powder. However Hotfoot powder is not a curse so much as it is a removal work. While the powder will cause an individual to move away, that is all the powder will be good for If used with justification hot foot powder will cause an individual to move out of their home, job, etc. Though you need to be careful as hot foot powder can last longer than intended and may cause the target to remain in motion unable to stay established for a long period of time. This is why it should be avoided.
So what we see here is that the expectorant and the anti-irritant medicinal properties give way to protection and removal work. Further looking at the herb will allow you to have insight into Cayenne pepper. One magical property of Cayenne pepper is sexuality and lust. This comes from the fire aspect and spice nature of the herb. In order to understand the whole herb you need to look at the entire picture. Only by looking at the entire picture of the plant (medicine, lore, history and magic) can one really understand how the herb works. The more we see the connections between the mind, the body, and the spirit the more whole we can become.
Question 2: In each section you’ve provided instruction to cleanse required objects and items of residual energies prior to use in the applications. How much importance is placed on this step and would failure to do so weaken the application?
I’m going to address this question in two parts. First, you have the physical cleaning aspects and then you have the spiritual and energetic aspect to the cleansing process. Both parts are important to the process. They are both essentially to having clean and sanitized materials to work with.
The first one is practicality. You need to at least wash your spoons, bowls, blenders, etc between each item you make. This prevents cross contamination. It makes sure that only the herbs and items used for that particular product or item are going to be in the items made. It also ensure that your items are sanitized for the next use. You want to make sure that any of the medicines made are made on clean and sanitized surfaced. So not only the objects made need to be cleaned but the space as well.
The second point deals with spiritual hygiene. When we are dealing with products for magical work and spiritual work we need to make sure that there is no energetic residue. That we are set up only for the work at hand. All emotions and all thoughts and energy for each items magical purpose must be focused solely on the individual item at hand. Any other thoughts, energetic forces and concepts can interfere and cause problems.
This does not mean that you need to do an additional cleaning with the materials. Not at all. That wouldn’t be practical. You can simply add prayers, burn incense, and direct energy within the physical cleaning of the materials and space to energetically cleanse them as well. That’s all you really need to do.
Let me explain. The addition of prayers and ritual work removes psychic and spiritual residue. This allows and ensure that only the magical and spiritual energy for the product being created at hand is there. The visualization, the incense, candles, and energy work all make the physical act of cleaning into a magical cleansing. For many who practice folk magic this is how they clean their house. There is no difference to them between the magical and the mundane. It is simply how life is lived.
This simple cleansing ritual will allow you to physically clean the items you used to create your products but also spiritually cleanse them as well.
By reading and exploring many other paths we can ask our selves what we truly think about things in this world. We can question what we believe about the after life, the nature of life, magic, etc. To me it doesn’t matter what you believe or what you practice. What does matter is that you have an outlook on the world around us.
If you are working magic and spiritual paths you need to have some sort of view on the universe. To me it doesn’t matter if you believe that all Gods and Spirits are aspects of the human mind created by humanity over eons or if you see them as physical beings. They are both philosophies and both views that guide you and your practice. Religion and exact beliefs don’t matter, Your relationship with the universe and the forces that govern them is all that matter,
I’m going to again address this in two parts. Since this book deals with both remedies and magic/spiritual work it seems fair t address this from both points. Intent is involved in both the remedy aspect and the magical aspect. Intent allows us to define what exactly the work at hand is and how we are going to address it. Intent allows us to plan out our attack on the problem to create the change regardless of it being a remedy or a magical project.
When you cast a spell and create objects for magical use they are going to serve a specific purpose. That purpose is the intent behind the work. You need to make sure that when you are working on an object (say you are making an oil for a peaceful home) you want to ensure that the only thoughts in your mind while making that oil are ones of a peaceful home. You can use any thought that brings out that image (happy holidays, beach visits, content faces over dinner etc) but the focus still needs to be on the aim or goal at hand.
Your intent drives what items you use for the object at hand. Once again going with the peaceful home with that being your intent you would need to use that as a base for herbs and items to use in the product. Chamomile, Lavender, and Rosemary would all be good for this work. I’d personally add in angelica root as well for a bit of protection.
The choice for these herbs was also based on the medicinal properties as well as the magical properties. By choosing herbs that we know have a soothing and peaceful nature we know that a peaceful atmosphere will be obtained. This is why peace is often a magical and spiritual property of herbs used for anxiety, stress relief, and sleep aid.
Lets take a look at each of these herbs to examine further why they are important.
Magical – Protection, Luck, Money, Sleep, Peace, Purification
Magical – Love, Protection, Purification, Happiness, Peace, Healing, Meditation, Psychic abilities
Magical – Cleansing, Draws the aid of spirits, Love, Mental focus, Protection, Lust, Exorcism, Healing, Herb of a good home
So intent plays in how you plan your magical working. The intent here is a happy home. There are many things that go into the creation of a happy and peaceful home. You need to account for emotional well-being, financial well-being, health, and over all wellness. You want to be sure that any negative energy is not able to stick around and that healthy and beneficial energetic forces stay.
Angelica Root offers protection. It will also remove anything you deem that does not serve. Do in a happy home or peaceful home oil this herb would protect from that which causes discord and remove that which discord. It also brings in peace through the healing of angelic forces.
Chamomile is a flower influenced by the sun. That means it is good for prosperity. So when used in a happy and peaceful home oil it will ensure that there are no real financial issues. This also falls into the stress reliefs aspect. One of the major stresses in our homes is financial stress. The protective aspect of Chamomile also protects finances and from that stress. The other aspect of being a solar herb is that Chamomile is a mood up lifter. By relieving stress you create a sense of peace and tranquility. You also have the cleansing aspect which helps maintain the peace.
Lavender is a love herb. So it helps bring love into the house. It also brings peace so you know everyone is at peace. Love and peace are essential for a healthy and happy peaceful home. Also this would be the key component as peace is in the properties. This will bring peace. If there are arguments this herb will help calm things down and soothe an individual. Lavender is really powerful for this. Anything dealing with homes, relationships, and peace should include lavender. The medicinal virtues of stress and anxiety relief will also be in play. They will be magnified by the Chamomile.
Written by: Shawn Robbins and Charity Bedell, pub 2017 Sterling Publishing Co. 305pp
The Good Witch’s Guide is not your average, everyday introductory or advanced peep into the Craft. To be honest, owning quite a few of these guides, myself, I was used to the standard Wiccan/Witchcraft encyclopedia reference materials. Most of them, I find, are stuffy, and to be clear, I’m not a huge fan. When I cracked open this book, I was expecting this to be just another reference guide, however; I found myself pleasantly surprised. This book is a real page turner.
The Good Witch’s guide is full of wonderful spells, incantations.
There is a guide to crafting your own personal Magick and yes, stones, essential oils, colors and herbs.
It has everything from Witchy Wisdom, rituals and formulas, spirituality, folklore, health and health remedies.
Of course, there are sections dedicated to candle Magick, brewing your own potions, tinctures and salves.
This book is jam packed with all kinds of recipes for Sabbats and special occasions.
Want to know how other Witches are casting their own versions of these spells? There’s even a section dedicated to that!
There are tons of traditional spells that are tried and true and all of the “how-to’s” that go along with them.
In this authors humble opinion, this may very well become the definitive guide for all who take the time to read it. The Good Witch’s Guide is a pleasure to read for the Beginner in the Craft all the way to your most Adept Student. It can be used strictly as a reference manual or can be read cover to cover without the monotony of other reference guides.
On a more personal note, this is one book is one that I will cherish and read again and again!
I started teaching and facilitating workshops in 2013. Of course I didn’t know where to begin in the big ocean of all that my life had taught me and continues to teach me. All I knew, was I need to share what I’ve learned. It took me a few teaching experiences to know really where I needed t0 start. For I came to understand that there were some needed tools that could help with the life changing things I have to share. It was also in some ways that I knew that these tools were the things that really helped with my healing and transformations that have been going on for the last 11 years. I had at first called my class that had these tools Unscript It! and Unscript Yourself!. Yes I did have a rough time knowing how to name my classes. Then when the decision to do my tools class I settled on A Free Form Sort of Way! In fact I will be teaching this class at this year’s ConVocation. But now I know you are curious as to what this is all about.
A Sunlit Evening by Aurora Shirina Lee-Laine
It is all about active, expressive meditation styles that are free-form in nature. These meditation styles teach us to make use of our voice and bodies in a free-form sort of way. Another way of seeing free form use of voice and bodies is things like ecstatic dancing and singing or sacred dance and singing. I also share how we can use creative arts in free-form sort of ways, so that we can freely express ourselves. It may seem odd to hear that free-form dance or singing and art can do so much to help us. For I know that most of what we have available, while very helpful and such, they require that we do things a certain way. In fact much of our lives are set up to follow certain ways to seeing things, doing things and so much more. I know I myself was struggling still to find my path and find myself within all the should do this and that this way and believe this and that. I had been doing meditation, chanting, prayer and ritual and so much more. Yet I was still somehow stuck in certain patterns and was feeling guilty when I couldn’t do ritual in the suggested ways. Often I found myself doing spontaneous things that really helped shift things for me and empower me. Yet I felt guilty for these spontaneous things I was doing during ritual and such.
That all started to change though when somehow Gabrielle Roth’s work showed up in my life!
Gabrielle’s books Maps To Ecstasy & Sweat Your Prayers, became a part of my life about 11 years ago.
With these books I started another part of my healing journey. There has been other peoples work that has added to her work and my understanding of free-form expression of our voices and bodies. Two such people are Bradford Keeney PhD his book: The Bushman Way of Tracking God and a local person in the Detroit Metro area Michael Patrick through his: Dance Meditation Technique.
These three people in different ways guide us in the benefits of free form body movement and expression of our voice. In different ways they show us how this path to meditation can help us get to know ourselves and how our mind and bodies respond to things in our lives. In different ways they show us how movement and use of voice help us to heal the disconnect we have between body, mind, feeling and emotions. They also show us how we can use these styles to make our connection with the divine in a more authentic way. These meditations styles also help us to in a conscious and active way to navigate our tougher challenges that are a part of our healing journeys. And as we are getting to know how our bodies and mind interact and react to things around us, we find means to move through stressful and tough things, because we are aware of things and we also are aware of how we can diffuse things. Why this works is because we are learning to face things and to express those things and this is a part of what can help us heal. For we are listening and paying attention to ourselves and we are giving voice, expression to things. Often just that act of acknowledging something , we start a process of diffusing things and calming things down.
The other thing that started to happen with my practice of free form expression of voice and body, was my spiritual practice deepened. I in more consistent ways experienced connection with the whole of life and it’s energies. I found myself wanting to commune with the wind, trees and animals, to where I’d dance with the trees and sing with the birds and insects. I often find myself being a bit more playful and filled with joy from the simplest of happenings and things. There is a certain freedom I gained in expressing myself through body and voice. I could feel the energies building easier and better for me when I do ritual or pray and chant freely and well, as raw as possible. Now mind you I still have the times I follow prescribed procedures when doing ritual, meditating and such. Yet so much for me has come from adding free form expression of my voice and body, as a part of regular practice also.
Another thing I’ve experienced with my free form meditation practice is that I can separate and know what emotions, energies and such belong to me and set myself free of others emotions and such. This is an important thing if you are an empath, energy worker, counselor or healer. It is also a helpful thing if you are Autistic. But even if you don’t identify with any of those things, it is good to be able to know what is your emotions and energies, what belongs to you versus what may belong to another person. Reason is we all take information in of varying types and in a variety of ways. We can get lost in all that information that we take in and it can leave us wondering why we are feeling a certain way, when it feels like we shouldn’t have a reason to feel say angry or depressed. So being able to move other peoples energies and emotions out of our system can be a big help in taking some of the edge off of being overwhelmed or buried under so much. Chances are if we feel this way we’ve been taking on to much of other people’s things. So it’s good to have means to let that excess energies and emotions out in a safe way.
This is just some of how free form expression of our bodies and voices can help us.
Now I want to share a few routines that can help:
First pick a favorite album or play list; Then ask yourself and your body ” How am I feeling? How is my body feeling?”;With the music playing start moving your body in how ever way it is feeling!
“examples; can be you are feeling sluggish. So you droop down, move slow. Another is you are stressed filled with tension, go ahead and tighten as much of your body as possible. You are feeling happy, do a happy dance then”
The point is move your body according to how it is feeling! As the music plays work through the way your are feeling. Let yourself feel and express what you and your body are feeling as much as you feel comfortable with.
” It is alright if you can only do this for say 5 minutes or a couple of songs” even that short bit of time can do wonders in diffusing the tough stuff and giving you more energy with the upbeat stuff! As you do this practice at least once or twice a week you will get better at helping your body and mind navigate how you are feeling both emotionally and physically.
You can also use this method to do energy work and to set intentions and work with affirmations! You also can spend time with The Divine and express your love and gratitude!
So allow yourself to work with and express your body and emotions through free form movement and see how it can help you.
Next is your voice!
This is a bit trickier if you don’t have any just instrumental type music you like. Yet your usual music can be alright for this also.
As for body movement, you now pick a playlist or album that you have found yourself humming or singing along with. Now you ask” What needs to be expressed?” and you express it through singing, humming or even just making sounds. We don’t always need words! The objective is to put as much feeling as you can into your voice as possible. It’s alright if words fail you! Just use your voice!
Once again it is alright if you can only do this for 5 minutes or a couple songs! All that matters is you consciously express what you are feeling through the music and your voice!
Again this can be used for a multitude of reasons!
Then comes the part that you combine your voice and body movement! And yes things can really take off when you combine the two! This is what you are working toward!
This is just a snap shot into how you can use free form expressions of your body and voice. Don’t be afraid to explore and discover these things for yourself!
I had mentioned free form expression through creative art styles in the earlier part of this article.
So let me share this particular style of free form expression with you.
I love art and I always hoped I could be an artist, even if it was just for myself. Yet sadly I didn’t have acceptable natural talent or ability when it came to art classes and such. I couldn’t draw like my sister could. Yet I did love to create cards for holidays and birthdays. Yet it never was something I thought I could do. So I never pursued anything with art.
Then I became a mother and one of my tough choices I made was to home school our child. It took me a few years to put together something that worked for myself and our child and fulfilled the state requirements also. It was during those early years that the Waldorf Education style arrived in my life. Fortunately I was able to find home school resources for this path of education. It helped us out a lot. It was also where I found that art was one of their core aspects. For the children are encouraged to do their own lesson books, in which they were encouraged to illustrate their lessons and write about their lessons in their own words. Working with our child through this style, opened some doorways for me to see what artistic things I could do.
The Many Paths To Learning To Love by Aurora Shirina Lee-Laine
That was when some drawing styles came into my life. The first was: Touch Drawing, created by Deborah Koff-Chapin. Then came: Zentangle: created by Rick Roberts & Maria Thomas. Also two other books caught and grabbed my attention and those are: The Art of Silliness by Carla Sonheim and the other: Doodling with Jim Henson.
So what all did these styles teach me and still are teaching me? Well they first gave me the means that did not require me to know how to do this shape or this form and making sure that I got them proportioned right and the lines are right and well you know get it right! So they freed me up by giving some guidelines, yet gave me plenty of room to just draw! Some interesting things started to come to my notice. I’m a very creative person and learning this about myself seemed to free me up to take that creativity and use it to change my past history’s stories and programming. I also had some repeated “Aha!” moments as I saw that even though I couldn’t keep forms, shapes, lines and proportions right, I still got to see neat things come forth. It showed me that my life choices that I had made that weren’t right or healthy or did more harm than good, could be things that were still a part of who I was, yet could be turned around to help in my growth and understanding of things. That mistakes and such aren’t necessarily the terrible monsters we can make them out to be. That mistakes really are lessons. We weren’t meant to be perfect and have all the answers. Life is about exploring, learning, growing and healing. That the messiness of life can still be useful and it’s okay that we don’t get it right all the time. Learning this started helping me to feel alright around other people and helped me to not be so scared that I’m going to mess things up. Sure I do bumble and fumble, but guess what we all have our awkward moments with each other. I started to understand that we all are students in this thing called life.
A Turtle That Showed Up by Aurora Shirina Lee-Laine
I could share so much more! But that is for a book project that needs to start happening! What I hope you take away from all this, is learning to know ourselves and love ourselves is the biggest job we have. I found that making free form expression a part of my routines has done so much to help me learn about myself and love myself. It has taught me and continues to teach me things about life and how to navigate it. It has helped me in being able to better to know what is my stuff and what belongs to other. It helps me by giving me an outlet to express and release things that have overloaded me. It has taught me that there can be good lessons in my mistakes and it has giving me so much in healing my connections with the layers of myself and also the greater wholeness of life and my fellow human brother and sisters. And it keeps giving so much more!
So please accept this invitation to explore these teachers I’ve shared with you and give these meditation styles a try and see what they do for you!!!
Aurora Shirina Lee-Laine
I know you would never think of kindness and compassion and self-love, as something to be a revolutionary act. Yet a few months ago while 2016 was slowly coming to a close, I posted on Facebook this little blip on my approach to activism:
My activism is a quiet yet potent one. I treat all people with respect and consideration. I’m open to another person’s point of view even when they differ from mine.
For I do not have all the answers. I am willing to do my best to want to understand someone, than to judge and condemn. I’m not perfect in this. Yet I know I do the best I can and fortunately that this is what I am able to do most of the time.
Well this little blip on Facebook got a conversation going between myself and Melissa Welsh:
She shared how being kind is a huge deal. That also kindness shouldn’t be a big deal, yet sadly in the world today during these times it is a very big deal.
She sadly had a very good point as to why kindness seems a rare thing in the world today. We are encouraged on so many fronts to be afraid of this and of that, of this group of people and that group. We are encouraged to judge and condemn one another. We are told how to be, what to do, what to say, what to wear and so much more, so we can be acceptable, to be loved. Then we are faced with the fact most of us feel that others can’t relate or understand us, our lives , our challenges.
In fact most of us feel like we are the only ones facing challenges. Too many of us also feel like life hates us, life is too hard, that life is out to get us and that all that people know how to do is use us. We live in constant stress and overload. So it isn’t a surprise that most people are in what I’ve come to understand as Survival Mode.
In this mode, that way too many of us live, kindness and human decency can go out the door. We often operate from a very enclosed space that is filled with our stress and worries, it is the only thing we see most days and we lose touch with one another and even ourselves. We lose touch with the rest of life. The part of life that is beautiful, friendly, amazing and surprising. The part of life that makes us smile and laugh and get a glimpse of joy.
As this conversation moved along and another in person conversation in December that I had with Kenya Coviak it got to the important part of what this article is about:
Kindness, Compassion & Love starts with us, with each individual, with each person that looks in a mirror!
The three of us, in these different conversations got to the core of why kindness is a big deal. Most of us struggle with loving and accepting ourselves. We struggle with being gentle, kind and understanding with ourselves.
We keep being stuck on the hamster wheel of thinking love, kindness and compassion comes from outside ourselves.
That if only we have this or that, wear this or that and so forth and all of this just so we can be loved, accepted and feel good about ourselves. It’s an even tougher thing for those of us that in one way or another ended up being different.We have mental and emotional things that make us different. Our skin color, our body shape, hair, eyes that makes us different. We have temperaments, personalities and intelligences that make us different. We hold different beliefs and opinions of our families, religions and so many other ways that make us different. Sadly we are not encouraged to celebrate and honor these differences.
So how do we get to that place of being able to love and be kind and compassionate toward ourselves?
There are many ways to getting to that place of love. So let me guide you through some of this. First order of business:
Look in a mirror at least 3 times a day, then as loudly or as quietly for you may have folks in the house or place of work, yet say: I love You!
I know that may seem too simplistic and silly too, yet I tell you it starts the process, it gets the ball rolling. I start you to with a mirror because that sort of puts you outside of you. Let’s face it we can say we love our kids our, partner, friends and many others. Yet we struggle with saying that and feeling that for ourselves. So a mirror is a good place to start. And because there is great power in words and voice it is important that you speak the words I love you!. So yes shout those three words or whisper those three words at least 3 times a day.
Then I have another step I share with you, it is something I do for myself I sing this, chant it or just speak it at least 2 times in a day. Here it is:
I love myself!
I love my life!
All the way through
the deepest depths
the highest heights.
All the way around
and all within
I love myself!
I love my life!
Another thing I chant, sing or speak and I suggest you do this one also 2 times a day is this one:
Oh dear love!
With these eyes let me see
the love that is shining down.
With these feet let me feel:
the love that is rising up.
With these ears let me hear
the love that is all around.
And with this heart and mind
know the love that is within,
everything, everyone and everywhere!
This is just your start! I start you out this way for you start to love yourself, your life and realize that love is there within you and is all around! This gives you a good foundation and also the energies needed to start the next part. Which is deprogramming yourself, disconnecting yourself from all that stuff that tells you, that you are not lovable or that you can’t love yourself or that you can’t know love till this or that happens or this or that you have to have in order to love yourself and your life.
I want to share with you a teacher that writes some wonderful books on how to free ourselves from our programming and how to live a life in which we love ourselves and our lives and can live it with joy. The first book I read of this teacher’s works was suggested to me during a growth and healing spurt that being challenging. I was at ConVocation during that time and some things were being stirred up when somebody recommended Miguel Ruiz’s book: “The Four Agreements“. I didn’t know what to expect. The book isn’t a thick one and it was the first I had heard of this person. Yet I am so glad I bought the book. Let me share a bit of those agreements:
The Four Agreements: By Don Miguel Ruiz
1. Be Impeccable with your World:
Speak with integrity. Say only what you mean. Avoid using the Word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others. Use the power of your Word in the direction of truth and love.
2. Don’t Take Anything Personally
Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won’t be the victim of needless suffering.
3. Don’t Make Assumptions
Find the courage to ask questions and to express what you really want. Communicate with others as clearly as you can to avoid misunderstandings, sadness and drama. With just this one agreement, you can completely transform your life.
4. Always Do Your Best
Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to sick. Under any circumstance, simply do your best, and you will avoid self-judgement, self-abuse and regret.
As you can see just by this introduction, that these agreements are about learning to be kind, compassionate and loving toward ourselves. These agreements help us to not use our words against ourselves or others. That it is alright to communicate yourself clearly about how you feel, what you want and to not be afraid to ask questions. These agreements teach us so much more. And Don Miguel Ruiz’s approach is gentle. It at times felt like I was sitting in front of a loving Great Grandparent that is sharing what life has taught them. I also highly recommend don Miguel Ruiz’s other books for further reading.
Other authors I recommend is Nirmala and Gina Lake. Both of these authors have much to share on how to love yourself and getting free of the programming that keeps you trapped in the loop of not loving yourself. A couple of both of these authors are:
Nothing Personal: Seeing Beyond the Illusion of a Separate Self
Living From the Heart
Getting Free: How to Move Beyond Conditioning and Be Happy
Trusting Life: Overcoming Fear and Beliefs That Blocks Peace and Happiness
There are many other authors and teachers I could share. But I know what I am sharing is a lot in this writing. But each of the mentioned authors can be great guides helping you to deprogram yourself. Will help you learn how to love yourself even when things are challenging and you make mistakes. They will give you a great foundation that will make the next recommendation a bit less challenging with time.
Unplug yourself and start limiting your media interactions.I would suggest start by limiting the amount of news and commercials you watch or listen to. I know I know, I can hear it the What! and such. And I want you to know I’m not suggesting that all media is bad or that all news sources are bad for us. But it does help to unplug ourselves some from certain parts of the media. For let’s face it, most news is all about all the hurtful ways we harm each other, or compete against each other.You are lucky if the news on TV can even share one positive event that happened, save this team or that team won, or hey tomorrow is going to be a sunny day. News on TV can really can get us spooked and stressed.
So yes unplug from the news some. Then commercials sit there and tells us what will make us cool, interesting and such. Commercials will tell us this or that can fix us. Yes I know when you are watching a show you want to stay on top of things with that show. Yet it is a good thing to watch a lot less commercials. The other area in our lives with media is, social media.
I love social media. It lets me stay in touch with people I meet at festivals and ConVocation and also with some of my family. Yet I know that with social media comes all that sharing of information. Some of it is great and fantastic. But some of it will stress us out and put us in a place of fear. With most social media engines working on watching your likes and loves or even what you hate. They go by what we are responding to!!!So you see on a day you get on and most of what you are seeing is this and that going wrong somewhere or somehow.Don’t click on every single one of them and don’t click the emotes showing how you felt about said thing.
Limit your responses for what lifts you up or what encourages to love yourself or what might help in a difficult yet positive way to see something different about yourself or your life. I know this is a radical idea.
Yet I tell you as a highly sensitive empath and highly functional Autistic person, cutting out some of that media does a world of good to ease some stress in our lives. Helps us not feel so overwhelmed. We start feeling less fearful. We also start being able to really get to know ourselves and what we really want, because we aren’t getting hammered as much by others telling us what’s good or not good for us through the media. So just do your best to limit some of your media time and what you take in as you look and read.
I know this has been an extensive sharing of things. Yet I know that it is a needed thing for each of us to learn to be loving, compassionate and kind people toward ourselves. We need to learn that we, us, each individual can heal and change things for the better toward ourselves and our lives.
It all starts with You and Me doing our individual best to be kind, compassionate and loving toward ourselves and our lives!!!
Be Blessed Dear Ones and Love Yourselves and One Another!!!
Aurora Shirina Lee
I refuse to allow myself to think that we have voted for the worst parts of humanity. I refuse to believe that Xenophobia, Homophobia, Islamophobia, Racism, and Anti-Femimism,are the things that won yesterday. I refuse to believe that I must now fear that my neighbors, friends, and allies and family members will be rounded up, snatched from their homes and livelihoods and sent to Conversion Therapy, “back” to Africa, Syria, Iraq, Egypt, Yemen, Lebanon, India, etc. or killed. I refuse to believe that I or anyone in my community should be or must be afraid to wear headwraps,Pentacles, Afro-Centric attire, jilbabs, abayas, afros, braids, locs or anything else cultural or religious. I refuse to believe that people who I know and care for; wonderful, loving, kind, accepting and beautiful people who I interact with everyday, that I have prayed with, manifested with, casted with…, hell shared beers with would “not care” for my and all those I share intersectionality with to elect someone who could cost us health, safety, and autonomy. I refuse to ever again comfort my children and dry their tears because they fear their friends will have to leave school because their families are from afar.
No. I refuse to think or do any of this. Because I know better, I am better, and I know WE are better.
What I believe is that Fear has created a Servitor, and fear won, on both sides. From the Tweets, Facebook posts, News pundits, family fights, unfriendings, hate crimes, hashtags and conflicts that both fan and foe of President-Elect Trump are guilty of, if nothing else is clear, what is, is that we have been operating in fear and have manifested exactly what we have focused on.
Fear drives hate; hate is just fear unchecked. One side is fearful of nuclear war, marginalization, further loss of jobs and industries, and moral decay. The other is fearful of social justice setbacks, loss of economic safety nets, mobilization of the worst members of society, theocracy, and, well, conservatism. Mix all of this with the fact that a lot of people have a “my way is the right way” attitude( yes, even we Pagans) and you have a recipe for mayhem.
At any rate, what’s done is done. President-Elect Trump, while not having the majority of the popular vote, fairly won the needed number of Electoral votes. His party has the majority seating in both House and Senate. If his acceptance speech is any indication, the times of division, rancor and stalemate in Washington, D.C. are over and he seems set up to succeed. May Justice, Fairness, and Truth guide him as he leads this country.
Where our focus should lie now, is with being and molding the best humans that we can be. We can kill the Servitor that we have created by intentionally chosing to operate in an opposing energy. That energy, Friends, is Love.
I choose to believe that we can make this country great again by choosing to be great people. I choose to believe that we all want what is just and best for humanity. I choose to believe that everything will be well and will get better. I choose to believe that we all know and recognize the Divine/ Ultimate Potential in each other and ourselves, and will treat each other accordingly. I believe that we ALL abhor the evils of Racism, Xenophobia, Islamophobia, Sexism, Homophobia, and the like. I also chose to believe that we as people will band together and fight these monsters wherever they may appear. I chose to believe that all that was wished to succeed is a change in politics as usual and to give an outsider a chance. I chose to believe that the hope for Change won over a promise of the same. I choose to believe that we all will protect them those whom injustice targets with all we have.
I choose to stop contributing to this Servitor by feeding it with hate, vengeance and division. I acknowledge that I have contributed to and been influenced by It. But I know I am better, and you are better. I know my coworkers are better,my neighbors are better. I know that by you and I treating ALL humans with Love,Kindness, Friendship, and Respect we can defeat the Hate that Hatred has produced. I believe that we can disagree and still be civil. I know we will not let our great society devolve into Nazi Germany or 1950’s America as so many fear. We are too great for that. And only by us remembering this, and committing to make our society better one interaction at a time, with all that we come across can we achieve the goals laid out in President-Elect Trump’s acceptance speech:
Now it’s time for America to bind the wounds of division; have to get together. To all Republicans and Democrats and independents across this nation, I say it is time for us to come together as one united people.
It’s time. I pledge to every citizen of our land that I will be president for all Americans, and this is so important to me…
I’m reaching out to you for your guidance and your help so that we can work together and unify our great country. I’ve said from the beginning, ours was not a campaign, but rather an incredible and great movement made up of millions of hard-working men and women who love their country and want a better, brighter future for themselves and for their families. It’s a movement comprised of Americans from all races, religions, backgrounds and beliefs who want and expect our government to serve the people, and serve the people it will.
I know we as people, as Humans can do this. only by suspending the fear mongering that has consumed the last 2 years and acting out of love towards all from love of ourselves can we defeat this evil that has infiltrated society. We know better, we are better, we can do better, and as Magickal Practitioners and Earth lovers we must do better. Espouse the Good, reprimand the evil, Love all and always love.
The Birch is a short horror film based on a story and creature design by Cliff Wallace. It was adapted for film by writers Ben Franklin and Anthony Melton. The film was created for Crypt Tv. Produced by Ben Franklin, Anthony Melton and Cliff Wallace. Director of photography Johnny Franklin.
The film opens in the forest where a young man is reading a book and making the talisman that is described in the book. You soon find out that the young man is the victim of bullying. His grandmother who has cared for and protected him all of his life is dying. She gives him the book and tells him that “her” will protect him after she is gone.
The man takes the book to the forest to look for “her mark” as instructed by his grandmother. Little did he know that the bully had followed him into the forest. The talisman is his only weapon so he holds it out like a shield. The bully snaps the talisman in half. Suddenly the guardian is there her body made of a birch tree and her arms and head of the twisted and gnarled roots. The creature design is breathtaking and brutal all at the same time. The concept of this guardian is brilliant and left me wanting to know more about her and how she came to be the guardian of this young man.
The film had excellent special effects the final scene of the dismembered body was realistic and well done. For a film that was under five minutes I found myself drawn into the story and special effects. I am a horror movie enthusiast and I personally would love to see more of this creature and story line. I would love to know more of the history with the grandmother and the book that brought forth the guardian when he needed her.
I urge you to do as I plan to and search for more creature and concepts by Cliff Wallace. I know we will be seeing much more of this man in the future and would not be surprised if someday we didn’t see his name on the big screen. Well done to him and the rest of the crew that worked on this excellent short film. Thank you to Crypt Tv for bringing it to the internet for us to enjoy and learn about these talented individuals. Follow the link below to sign up for more from Crypt Tv so you don’t miss out on new projects from this team. You can also follow them on Facebook, Instagram, Google plus, Twitter, Youtube and Snapchat.
She heard a cry in the night
It shook her from her sleep
She sat up in the full moon bright
Her sorrow stuck her deep
She listened to the Owls screech
The howling Wolf in the wood
She knew she wouldn’t fall asleep
She shouldn’t if she could
Goddess Nature was calling
Soon Her tears poured as hard as rain
She could feel her heart falling
Lightening ignited the pain
She stood and cried in the storm
Let the water heal where she felt torn
Nature mirroring how she felt
her sadness soon began to melt
She got it out
that broken heart
Through the storm
a brand new start
She crawled back into bed
With only darkness to see
A smile spread across her lips
She whispered “Blessed Be”
by Jill Marie