Bear Spirit

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Over the past six months or so I have been inundated with the spirit of the bear. Bears show up in my dreams and meditations. Bears show up in my tarot readings. I see images of bears in the oddest of places. Bear spirit is confident, strong, and protective. Bear spirit is also introspective – seeking solitude and reflection.

During this same time period I meditated on connecting to a matron deity. After the meditation, I drew a tarot card for clarification. I won’t go into details due to the personal nature of such an experience, but it became clear that a bear goddess was open to working with me. I knew that Artemis and Diana were associated with bears, but somehow they didn’t feel right. As I searched my books and internet resources, one goddess stood out – Artio. As soon as I started to read about her I felt at ease. This is the goddess who has reached out to me.

Today I spent some time creating a collage page for my grimoire dedicated to Artio. I wonder what she will teach me?

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Dea Artio, the bear goddess, Berne History Museum, Switzerland

 

New Moon in Virgo

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Virgo blue

As I contemplate setting my intentions for this new moon, I realize that I need to dig deeper. I need to study myself.  I have been a witch-in-waiting. I have been waiting to practice because I still need to study this or that. I have waited to start my personal grimoire because I’m worried I’ll mess up that beautiful journal with my unskilled ways. The time for waiting is over. Stop procrastinating. Now.

I did a very insightful new moon tarot card reading today. I realized that I am ready. I have been ready for some time. So what if I make a mistake? I will learn from it. The reading revealed to me that I am working hard in the present moment to plan for success. I am thankful for the ability I have to judge what is for my higher good and what is not. I desire a change in my life – a spiritual awakening and a spiritual life put into practice – not just theory. I need to release that which holds me back. Patience and perseverance are the keys to successfully manifesting my intentions. I will step into my truth. I am eagerly determined.

Altar 1

My new moon intentions are as follows:

  • I am journaling every day.
  • I am writing a blog post every week.
  • I am following the lunar cycle more closely so I can attune myself with the moon’s energies and see how it affects my craft.

Actionable steps to help manifest my goals:

  • Set alarm early enough to give me time to journal in the mornings after drawing a card for the day
  • Set aside time to study about how to utilize the moon’s phases in my daily life and magickal workings
  • Plan a weekly blog topic and schedule time on Sundays to create and write

Thanks for stopping by today!

 

My Craft

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Ancestry and Landscapes

My ancestry is mostly Western European and Irish with some Welsh, Scottish, British, and Scandinavian lines. This possibly explains why I am intrigued by the histories and mythologies of these particular areas. I have always felt out of place in my environment. It is hot, dry, and plains dominate the landscape. I visited England with a family member when I was a child, and I felt like I was finally at home. I belong in a cooler, rainier, more wooded landscape. With one child out of the nest, and one about to be, I am considering changing my landscape.

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So Many Traditions, Paths, and Eclectic Mixes

For over two years now I have studied witchcraft and its many paths and traditions. I find I prefer a mixture of green/hedge/cottage witchcraft; working with the elements, herbs, plants, trees, crystals, and nature in general fits me. I also like to include meditation, visualization, divination, and energy work. I was on the fence for a long time about including gods and goddesses in my craft. I was raised in a strictly monotheistic religion, and it’s been hard to change from this mindset. However, the more I study and learn the more at ease I feel incorporating gods and goddesses in my spiritual path. I believe there is a divine energy that is the source of all creation. This divine energy has both male and female aspects as is seen throughout all of nature. Throughout history humans have created mythologies to explain the world and cosmos around them. I see specific gods and goddesses as various aspects of the Divine. I plan on keeping an open mind on this topic because I know my knowledge and beliefs are ever evolving. That being said, I am currently drawn to the Celtic mythologies, gods, and goddesses.

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Kitchen Witch by Jane Aspen

Study, Study, Study

Currently I have several modalities of study. I am reading Christopher Penczak’s The Inner Temple of Witchcraft. His book includes practical exercises as well as general information. I’m taking part in my coven’s online newbie course, and I have a lot of books I’m reading. I especially enjoy reading the Green Witchcraft series by Ann Moura and anything by Joseph Campbell. My reading list includes a variety of topics relating to witchcraft, mythology, shamanism, chakras, meditation, and even quantum physics and psychology. As an educator I believe that one’s education never ends. I plan on learning and evolving my beliefs throughout my lifetime.

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In the Beginning

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My conscious journey in self-discovery, magick, and spirituality began in earnest about three years ago. Subconsciously, it began when I was a child. I was raised in a very loving, religious home. I grew up believing whole-heartedly in the religion placed before me. And yet…I felt magick every time I went outside. I saw it reflected in nature at every turn.

While attending a Christian university, I began to question my beliefs. I believed in God. What I didn’t believe was all the dogma. For example, one professor claimed that baptism was required in order for a person to be saved and to claim their entrance into heaven. A student then asked what would happen to a person if they died while walking to the river to be baptized. He adamantly responded that the person would go to hell. I knew deep down to my core that he was wrong.

That was over twenty years ago. During the past two decades I have lived my life while slowly pulling away from the church and religion in general. Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m not against religion. I’m for people making their own choices about religion and spirituality. For the last ten years or so I have found myself drawn to study pagan spirituality. The word pagan often has a negative connotation in today’s world. In the past it referred to country folk. Today it means a person holding religious beliefs other than those of the Abrahamic religions. While the world in general is more accepting of paganism today, we still have a long way to go.

Since paganism covers a vast spectrum of belief systems, I have spent considerable time researching, and I have found my path. I am a witch. Yes. You read that correctly. I believe that there is a Divine Energy from which stems all creation. That Divine Energy is in everyone and everything. I believe that the Divine is both male and female as can be seen throughout all of nature. I believe that our soul does not die but continues on after leaving the physical body. I have many beliefs. I am still deconstructing, and it’s beautiful.

Today I leave you with two quotes.

“I cannot conceive of a personal God who would directly influence the actions of individuals, or would directly sit in judgment on creatures of his own creation. I cannot do this in spite of the fact that mechanistic causality has, to a certain extent, been placed in doubt by modern science. My religiosity consists in a humble admiration of the infinitely superior spirit that reveals itself in the little that we, with our weak and transitory understanding, can comprehend of reality. Morality is of the highest importance — but for us, not for God.” – Albert Einstein ‘The Human Side’, 1954

“Your vision will become clear only when you can look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes.” – Carl Jung

crystals and book