Flashback 2008 – Winter Solstice

Yule

At Yule, the Oak King who rules during the waxing year conquers the Holly King in order to reign until Midsummer, when the two meet again. It is believed that the Holly King has evolved into the modern day Santa Claus, wearing red, with holly in his hat. His eight deer represent the Pagan sabbats, as animals as regarded scared by the Celtic gods. Although the Oak King and the Holly King are opposing forces at Litha and Yule, they com[lement each other. In ancient times, the Sun’s return after a long period of scarcity and darkness affirmed survival and resilience in the winter season.

A few days before Yule, decorate your home with oranges studded with cloves to release a warm, yuletide aroma. It’s time to feast, exchange gifts, and thank the Goddess for the return of abundance and light. At your Yule gathering, cozy up up to your favorite people and enjoy some delicious mulled red wine infused with cinnamon sticks and whole cloves. Serve warm in chalices, with a sprinkling of nutmeg, to toast the rebirth of the Oak King. When you take a sip from the chalice, hold hands with your guests and shout, “Wassail” – the old English word for “your health”

Copyright Emely Flak – Llewellyn Witches’ Datebook 2008 Pg 129

A List of Some of The Goddesses and Gods of Healing

Gods and Goddesses of Healing

Instead of copying and pasting all eighteen of the deities and their information I’m just going to give you the link to the article by Patti Wigington on About.com. When I did a general search on Google for “healing gods” a lot of possibilities came up but as I really like the way Ms Wigington presents stuff I choose to go with her article.

http://paganwiccan.about.com/od/godsandgoddesses/ss/Gods-And-Goddesses-Of-Healing.htm

If you know the names of other Gods and/or Goddesses know for their healing abilities please post them in the comment section below. One goddess I was surprised not to see on her list is Kwan Yin, an oriental goddess known to help with depression and comforting people who call upon her.

God/Goddess Healing Ritual

For those of us who want to do something privately for Lady A or even someone else that needs healing, I found this relatively easy healing ritual by Patti Wigington on About.com. Here is the link if you want to check out the article or others on various subjects on the About.com’s website: http://paganwiccan.about.com/od/wiccanandpaganrituals/a/God-Goddess-Healing-Ritual.htm (This article has not been changed in any way by myself, so any typos were already there.)

Updated May 01, 2016.

This ritual is one which can be done on behalf of an ill friend or family member. They do not have to be present for you to do this ritual. In many traditions it is customary to at least ask permission before doing healing (or any other sort of) magic. However, it is often acceptable to assume you have implied permission – in other words, if you believe in good faith that the individual would want you to perform this rite on their behalf, then you may go ahead and do so without specifically asking for their approval in advance. Follow the guidelines of your own tradition’s belief system and ethical standards.

Keep in mind that someone who is terminally ill may not wish to live longer, and may instead be wishing for release from their pain. As a contrast, someone who is suffering from an acute illness rather than a long-term one may simply want to feel better immediately.

This ritual asks the goddess (or god) of your tradition to watch over the ailing individual and assist them with healing.

There are a number of different deities associated with healing, from a variety of different pantheons. If your particular flavor of Paganism doesn’t have a god or goddess of healing, consider using one of these:

Celtic:

Greek:

Norse:

Roman:

Egyptian:

Yoruba:

You will need the following items:

  • A small (votive or even tealight size) white candle to represent the individual for whom you are doing the ritual
  • Healing incense (loose blend) of allspice, bay, yarrow, apple blossoms, lemon balm, cinnamon
  • A candle in any color representing the god or goddess you wish to petition for assistance

Begin by casting a circle, if your tradition requires you to do so. Set up your altar as you normally would, placing the god/goddess candle behind the individual candle. In this sample ritual template, we will be using Brighid, but you should substitute the name of the deity upon whom you are calling when you perform this rite.

Say:

I call upon you, Brighid, in a time of need.
I ask your assistance and blessing, for one who is ailing.
[Name] is ill, and she needs your healing light.
I ask you to watch over her and give her strength,
Keep her safe from further illness, and protect her body and soul.
I ask you, great Brighid, to heal her in this time of sickness.

Place the loose incense blend on your brazier (or, if you don’t use a brazier for incense, use a charcoal disc in a bowl or plate) and light it. As the smoke begins to rise, envision your friend’s illness wafting away with the smoke.

Brighid, I ask you to take away [Name]’s illness,
Carry it out to the four winds, never to return.
To the north, take this illness away and replace it with health.
To the east, take this illness away, and replace it with strength.
To the south, take this illness away, and replace it with vitality.
To the west, take this illness away, and replace it with life.
Carry it away from [Name], Brighid, that it may scatter and be no more.

Light the candle representing the god or goddess.

Hail to you, powerful Brighid, I pay you tribute.
I honor you and ask this one small gift.
May your light and strength wash over [Name],
Supporting her in her this time of need.

Use the flame on the deity candle to light the smaller candle, representing your friend.

[Name], I light this candle in your honor tonight.
It is lit from the fires of Brighid, and she will watch over you.
She will guide you and heal you, and ease your suffering.
May Brighid continue to care for you and embrace you in her light.

Take a few moments to meditate on what you really wish for your friend. Once you have finished, allow the candles to burn out on their own if possible.

The Charge of the God

The Charge of the God is a newer more recent addition to Wiccan ritual. No one charge has risen above the others yet to gain popularity so you will hear many different ones based solely on which God and which attributes of the God the Wiccan wants to invoke at a given ritual.

Below are some of my favorite ones. Since true Wicca is about balance between feminine and masculine energy, I think a Charge of the God is very appropriate when invoking both Deities.

Listen to the words of the Great Father, who of old was called Osiris, Adonis, Zeus, Thor, Pan, Cernunnos, Herne, Lugh and by may other names:

“My Law is Harmony with all things. Mine is the secret that opens the gates of life and mine is the dish of salt of the earth that is the body of Cernunnos that is the eternal circle of rebirth. I give the knowledge of life everlasting, and beyond death I give the promise of regeneration and renewal. I am the sacrifice, the father of all things, and my protection blankets the earth.”

Hear the words of the dancing God, the music of whose laughter stirs the winds, whose voice calls the seasons:

“I who am the Lord of the Hunt and the Power of the Light, sun among the clouds and the secret of the flame, I call upon your bodies to arise and come unto me. For I am the flesh of the earth and all it’s beings. Through me all things must die and with me are reborn. Let my worship be in the body that sings, for behold all acts of willing sacrifice are my rituals. Let there be desire and fear, anger and weakness, joy and peace, awe and longing within you. For these too are part of the mysteries found within yourself, within me, all beginnings have endings, and all endings have beginnings.”

So Mote It BE!

To read other versions please click on this link http://blessedbe.sugarbane.com/god.htm

Deities of the Spring Equinox

Spring is a time of great celebration in many cultures. It’s the time of year when the planting begins, people begin to once more enjoy the fresh air, and we can reconnect with the earth again after the long, cold winter. A number of different gods and goddesses from different pantheons are connected with the themes of Spring and Ostara. Lets take a look at some of the many deities associated with spring, rebirth, and new life each year.

Making Offerings To The Gods

Now, this question has been with me for a while; what do the Gods consider offerings??? What do I do with them afterwards?  Do not panic! All is perfectly well, you are safe. The Gods will not smite you because you have not offered them lavish riches or a tasty treat; they love you far too much.

What Do The Gods Consider Offerings

A number of things! You can give them food, you can burn incense, you can play music for them if you worship a God of music, put fresh water for those who preside over water, a beautiful and lovely scented candle, practically anything. EXCEPT FLESH! DO NOT SACRIFICE! DO NOT OFFER ANYTHING WITH FLESH AND A SOUL AS AN OFFERING! I…

To read the rest of the article please click on this link: http://paganisus.blogspot.com/

Love Myths from Cultures Around the World

Enclosed are the plot summaries of love tales from ancient and modern cultures. After a unit on Classical mythology you may want to have your students compare the Greek and Roman stories to tales from cultures around the world. Students will be interested to find many parallels such as transformations, trips to the Underworld, impossible tasks, and magic charms. This booklet contains only brief samples, so there is plenty of room for further research as well as creative projects to portray similarities and differences in myths. Students can also do further research on the culture in order to relate the elements of the myth to their cultural context.

This is a very interesting article that I learned new things from. To read the rest of the article click on this link: http://www.dl.ket.org/latin1/things/holidays/valentine/love.htm

Partial Lists of All Gods and Goddesses

While the lists I give here are sure to name many of the Gods and Goddesses from around the world, I figure some must be missing from them.

List of Gods and Goddesses by Culture

List of Major Countries or Cultures With Ancient Gods and Goddesses
This list is from About.com