8 Ways to Celebrate the Autumn Equinox/Mabon

No matter what you choose to call it, the Autumn Equinox has long been one of my favorite sabbats. It’s a time when I can almost hear the Wheel of the Year turning, and signs of change are everywhere. There’s so much to harvest in the garden, and the sunflowers that stood so tall and proud back in August are now heavy and tired, ready to share their seeds with the waiting earth. The nights are now starting earlier too, with sunsets now noticeably earlier in the evening. Early Fall is a magickal time, and here are a few ideas on ways to celebrate.
Read more at http://www.patheos.com/blogs/panmankey/2017/09/8-ways-to-celebrate-the-autumn-equinoxmabon/#Arztlkw28KIlRAZu.99

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How to Attract Faeries and Work with Them in Your Craft

Whether you call them faeries, fairies, the fae, or the fey, nature and elemental spirits are powerful and poetic allies. Working with them has many benefits. They can make a house feel like a home, and can bring a sense of etherial magic to your practice.

Fairies, John Atkinson Grimshaw. Public Domain.
I’ve been blessed with fae energy throughout my life. I credit this to my mother, who believed in faeries long after her childhood, and raised me in a home decorated with beautiful, witchy objects.

Read more at http://www.patheos.com/blogs/starlight/2017/09/how-to-attract-faeries-and-work-with-them-craft/#qH8OT6A8Jyd3bjKg.99

This Mabon, Honor the Dark Goddess

The young mother-maiden swings a picnic basket, and lays down a blanket, bread, and cheese. The old crone pulls a bottle of cyser mead from her carpetbag, and pours it into glasses. They clink and make a toast to Mabon, or the autumn equinox — the day when the light and darkness are most equal.
I imagine the goddesses speak of the things that happened in the past six months. The maiden tells the dark goddess of human events and earthly occurrences, of devastations and accomplishments. The dark goddess speaks of the world of emotions and subterranean forces, of feelings beneath the surface. They nod, laugh, and shake their heads.

Read more at http://www.patheos.com/blogs/starlight/2017/09/mabon-honor-dark-goddess/#0yrjopkYSWAqjZZi.99

Tracing the Origins of the Infamous Ouija Board

The Ouija board (known also as a Spirit board or Talking board) is a type of board commonly believed to enable its users to communicate with the spirit world. A Ouija board usually has the letters of the alphabet inscribed onto it, the numbers 0 – 9, along with words such as ‘yes’, ‘no’, and ‘goodbye’. In addition to the board itself, each Ouija includes a planchette, a teardrop-shaped device with three legs. The planchette is normally made of wood or plastic, and usually has either a hole in its middle or a kind of pointer. For the Ouija to operate, two or more people should be seated around the board, with their fingertips placed on the planchette. A question is then asked, and the planchette apparently seema to move on its own, thus providing an answer.

Spiritualism

Although the practice of obtaining messages from seemingly supernatural things is almost as old humanity itself, the Ouija board is arguably a more modern divination object. Some sources have argued that Pythagoras put forth talking boards in 540 BC and others have likened them to ancient writing devices from China, but most of these beliefs fall flat when their original sources cannot be found, or, the stories are found to have been created as a form of publicity or based on misinformation.

Talking boards are known instead to have their origins in a movement known as Spiritualism…

To read the rest of this article please click on this link: http://www.ancient-origins.net/history/tracing-origins-infamous-ouija-board-005898?nopaging=1

Mabon – A Solitary Ritual

Holidays and holy days are better with friends and family.  But many Pagans maintain solitary practices.  Even if you work with a group, sometimes you can’t be with them for one reason or another.  And sometimes your group meets on a convenient day but you feel the need to celebrate on the exact day.  Whatever the reason, many Pagans will be celebrating the Autumn Equinox by themselves.
Mabon is the second of the three Celtic harvest festivals.  It’s the apple harvest and the celebration of the equinox, the time of equal day and night.  The actual equinox is Wednesday, September 23 at 3:22 AM CDT. For the next six months, the nights will be longer than the days.

Read more at http://www.patheos.com/blogs/johnbeckett/2015/09/mabon-a-solitary-ritual.html#BQSXv2GBjzZJRVlI.99

The Origins of the Faeries: Changes in Conscious Perception – Part II

The faeries appear in folklore from all over the world as metaphysical beings, who, given the right conditions, are able to interact with the physical world. They’re known by many names but there is a conformity to what they represent, and perhaps also to their origins.

[Read Part I]

In his 2005 book Supernatural, Graham Hancock puts forward the hypothesis that the shamanistic cultures of the Stone Age were also interacting with these beings. Around 40,000 years ago there was an explosion of symbolism in human cultures throughout the world, primarily represented by cave art. This cave art is usually located in hard to access underground spaces that must have had significant meaning for the artists and those who would have been experiencing these strange images by firelight. And strange they are. Much of the cave art represents therianthropic beings, that is half human, half animal shape-shifters.

There are also many beings that seem to be distorted humans, often similar to the faeries of folklore. And this gets to the core of the subject. Hancock makes the convincing argument that these cave paintings were produced to represent reality as perceived in an altered state of consciousness. Twenty years ago this idea was anathema to anthropologists, but since the work of the anthropologists David Lewis-Williams, Thomas Dowson and many others, the theory has tipped over to become an accepted orthodoxy. There are motifs by the hundred in the cave paintings that correlate with the visionary states of people in an altered state of consciousness, brought about most especially by the ingestion of a psychotropic substance.

The basic premise is that the shamans of these stone age cultures transported themselves into…

To read this rest of this and see the pictures please click on this link: Fairies 2

Pagan Sacred Callings That Aren’t Priesthood

In the last post on Intermediate Polytheism, I mentioned listening to the Gods so as to hear what They’re calling you to do. That call may or may not include priesthood.
Priesthood is a specific set of duties and commitments, and it often looks very different from what Catholic priests and Protestant ministers do. There are many forms of service – priesthood is only one.
In 2014 I wrote a fairly lengthy post titled Priesthood – A Modern Pagan View. That was a condensation of a longer essay I wrote as part of my ordination training. I listed lots of things that priests do, but I grouped them into three main categories: serving the Gods, mediating for the Gods, and serving their communities. That post stands on its own and I encourage you to read it. I’m going to quote one section and then move on.

Read more at http://www.patheos.com/blogs/johnbeckett/2017/09/pagan-sacred-callings.html#RXRTRSzSUAiKYzbf.99

We Have Made A Few Changes In Our Customer Appreciation Gifts for the Rest of September

Witches Of The Craft®

Our Customer Appreciation Gifts Have Changed

Yes, we have changed our Customer Appreciation Gifts for the Rest of September. Check’em Out, We Are Sure You Are Going To Be Pleased!

With every $50.00 order you will receive one of these great calendars as a thank you gift from us. I know money, money, money but if you check your local bookstores or anywhere else these calendars will run you $21.95. So you are getting a bargain plus a valuable keepsake. The calendars tell you about each month, gives you a spell about that month, gives you the moon signs, phases, what zodiac symbols the moon is currently in and much, much more. It is a must for any practicing witch. I could go on and on because I love mine to pieces and I believe you will too.

For orders under $50.00, you will receive this beautiful Wire…

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Days of the Week Goes With ___ Element

I have had many novices tell me lately they can not find the corresponding element for each day of the week. I did a general search on Google.com using the keywords “elemental days of week”. Below is the link for this general search and I know the answer can be found as I have clicked on more than a few of the links. I hope this helps you all out.

Element = Day of Week

The Origins of the Faeries: Encoded in our Cultures – Part I

The faeries appear in folklore from all over the world as metaphysical beings, who, given the right conditions, are able to interact with the physical world. They’re known by many names but there is a conformity to what they represent, and perhaps also to their origins. From the Huldufólk in Iceland to the Tuatha Dé Danann in Ireland, and the Manitou of Native Americans, these are apparently intelligent entities that live unseen beside us, until their occasional manifestations in this world become encoded into our cultures through folktales, anecdotes and testimonies.

In his 1691 treatise on the faeries of Aberfoyle, Scotland, the Reverend Robert Kirk suggested they represented a Secret Commonwealth, living in a parallel reality to ours, with a civilization and morals of their own, only visible to seers and clairvoyants. His assessment fits well with both folktale motifs, and some modern theories about their ancient origins and how they have permeated the collective human consciousness. So who are the faeries, where do they come from…and what do they want?

Faerie-tales…

To read the rest and see pictures please click on this link: Fairies