Survival Magick

How many times have you felt like the witch that was caught in the cyclone in the Wizard of Oz?  There you are, minding your own business and here comes a big old gust of wind and knocks you off of your broom and out of your ruby slippers.  Next thing you know, you are trying to pick the dirt out of your teeth and scraping squashed munchkin off of your robes.

Too many times we have been overwhelmed by things that should shake us a bit at most.  We find that something that started as a good swift breeze suddenly has us hoisted up by our britches, spinning out of control, preparing for a crash landing.  I found myself in such situations this week.

I am pretty much a happy-go-lucky type of fellow by nature.  I try not to let things get to me.  I have always lived by the philosophy that if it can’t kill me or eat me, then I really shouldn’t worry about it too much.  I just never thought that life was worth too much stressing…..until this past year hit.  It seems that every stressful thing that could raise its ugly head, has tried some sort of attack on me.  When it wasn’t car stress, it was plumbing stress, or pet stress, or relationship stress.  I also realized this year that stress takes a toll on the body too.

This week, I was sitting quietly at my desk.  I began to feel something that I haven’t felt in a long long time.  Actually, it had been so long since I was visited by this dangerous adversary that I almost let my guard down.  You see, years ago, I struggled with major depression.  I am not talking about the “ho hum, gloom and doom” type of depression; I am talking about the “don’t get out of bed, don’t eat, try to figure out the easiest way to commit suicide” kind of depression.  During that bout of depression, I became someone that even those closest to me didn’t recognize.  I became so cocooned inside of myself that I didn’t see or care about the world going on around me.  I couldn’t muster the energy for protective spells.  I didn’t care what stone I needed to carry with me.  My heart wasn’t inside me anymore.

I had many people rallying around me at that time.  Most of those people understood nothing of what I was dealing with, but they were there.  They made themselves available.  I tried therapy, medication…..nothing seemed to work for me.  I just knew that this was my new normal and it spiraled me deeper into depression. 

In the middle of this dark, dismal time, one thing just kept circling my brain.  The phrase, “the power of words” kept visiting and revisiting my exhausted brain.  I knew that words had power, but I had no desire to tap into it. 

Back to this week…..I am sitting at my desk and I feel that isolation and deep dark pain begin to creep in.  It didn’t help that I had had a huge argument with my partner.  It also didn’t help that parts of work were burying me.  It helped least of all that my blood pressure has been spiraling upward and that upward spiral was creating panic attack after panic attack.  I heard words start to form in my mind…..”It would just be easier if I died in my sleep.”

When I heard those words in my brain, my heart took over.  It has gotten quite a bit stronger than those many years ago.  So has the spirit inside of me.  I could feel everything rise up and say, “What the hell are you thinking?!?!”  I began to pull on every ounce of ancient Magick that was inside of me.  I made myself create protection shields around every inch of me.  I did a stone grid.  I pulled my wand to me.  I called to God and Goddess asking them to renew the very essence that I knew was in me…..to breathe that “pneumos” or spirit back into me.  I laid there with my wand, “Raven Light and Dark” close to my heart and I could feel a force field building around me.  I could feel the strength of other witches. 

We have to rely on the circle goddess has place around us.  I know, for a fact that, even though the ladies and gentlemen that are a part of my circle did not know the situation, they began pouring their energy deep into my spirit.  Sometimes all it took was one of them sending something to make me laugh or just a simple, “I love you.” 

I am at a point in my Magickal walk that my Magick is “peaking.”  I can feel it getting stronger on a daily basis.  This is a time that I have to cling dearly to the Horned one and to My Dear Lady.  I have too much coming to be squashed by a wayward house or to be uprooted by a stiff breeze.  I am a sorcerer, a witch—-armoured with the ways of the ancients.  I am stronger now than I have ever been and I am ready for battle!

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A Child of Lughnasadh–Harvesting the Seeds I Have Sown

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I was born on August 1.  I am very much a fire sign as you have read before.  August 1 happens to be the celebration of the first harvest.  The Lughnasadh festival is said to have been begun by the Celtic Sun God Lugh as a funeral feast and sporting competition in commemoration of his foster-mother, Tailtiu, who died of exhaustion after clearing the plains of Ireland for agriculture. This is the time for the harvest of the spring plantings and the harvest of the apples and grapes.  This is the beginning of the earth going into its winter sleep.  It is hard for many to see August as the beginning of Autumn, but  as Autumn begins, the Celtic Sun God enters his old age, but is not yet dead.

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I am very much a child of the harvest.  My birthday has always been a time of reflection for me—especially as I get……**gulp** older. Lughnasadh or Lammas has always been a “sow what you reap” time in my ritual.  Yes, I celebrate the coming of the abundance of what I have put out into the universe.  I think about the kindnesses that I have shown and been shown.  I think about all those great things that we like to envision ourselves as having done.  I also think about the things that could have been done better.  Have I given truth to those who have needed it?  Have I poured into those who were empty.  What types of seeds did I sow in my spring?

When I was in the pastorate of mainline churches, I was allowed to spend time with people in their final moments.  I watched as many began to spew forth the regrets that they had and hoped for some absolution before crossing over.  I also watched as some looked peacefully out into the universe and blissfully drifted into another area of existence.  I have always vowed that my life would have as few regrets as I could manage and that peace would be my escort into the summerlands…..therefore I use my birthday and Lammas to look back over the past year and then move forward toward the death of regrets. 

I look back at the springtime of the year and wonder to myself.  Have I planted seeds of joy, friendship, encouragement, healing?  What is it that I desire to harvest with the celebration of the first fruits?  I spent time slowly walking through the courtyard today looking at each plant deeply.  The wheel seems to be turning earlier than usual this year.  The plants began showing themselves in February instead of March or April.  The Magick I have poured into this courtyard this year……I have celebrated with friends….mourned the loss of loved ones….cried for healing for myself and others. The plants, the walls, the ground have all heard my deepest longings and happinesses and pains.  The fae who work that area know me intimately. The Sun God and the Moon Goddess know me by name.  I hear them whisper it often in the warm Summer breeze.

I know that soon the warm sweat that pours from my forehead as I work with the plants will soon be replaced by the clouds of chilled air that come from my mouth. As the Sun God and Moon Goddess prepare themselves for death, the remains of the legacy they leave behind are strongly evident.  It is that legacy that gives us hope for spring.  What legacy do I leave behind on a daily basis?  I look at myself in the mirror.  I am far from death, but then again we aren’t guarranteed anything.  What do I want to be remembered for?  I want to be known as a lover of people and animals.  I want to be known as a healer of spirits, hearts and minds.  I want to be a helper….a friend. 

I sit patiently in the courtyard watching for those seeds to sprout.  I feel the anticipation of the harvest.  Yes, I am impulsive.  Yes, I can be brash.  There is an old saying in the south, “I may not be where I want to be, but thank heavens, I ain’t where I once was.”  Each line on my face, each age spot on my hand represents a seed just waiting for the hope of sprouting and being harvested and used for its perfect purpose.  I stand ready.