Lady Beltane is on a Hopefully Short Medical Leave

Greetings Sisters, Brothers, and Guests,

It is with a heavy heart that I have to consider my health first. I am NOT a confirmed case of COVID-19 but I am symptomatic. My doctor and I are keeping a close watch on my breathing. But it is more likely a mixture of a common cold or flu virus coupled with lousy allergies and a fibromyalgia flare hitting me all as once. To be on the safe side for my husband, we started sleeping separately a couple of weeks ago, I am self isolating in my den/altar room. The Elders of Coven Life and WOTC will be taking over at least 98% of my duties so I feel better to lead the full Moon Esbat gathering on April 5th. So posts may look different.

Everything with Coven Life’s School of Witchcraft will continue as normal.

I will answer emails when I feel up to it during my time off.

Until we meet again blessings of health for and for those you care about,

Lady Beltane

A Happy and Blessed Ostara or Mabon

Well, I just learned something new about the spring equinox in the northern hemisphere and the fall equinox in the southern hemisphere. Ostara the spring equinox is on Thursday, March 19, 2020 at 10:49 PM PM CT while Mabon the fall equinox is on Friday, March 20, 2020 at 2:49 PM AEDT in the southern hemisphere. Which means we are experiencing the equinoxes at the exact same time just in different time zones and because of the international date line on a different date.

When I read this I felt it covered more than just a blessing for Ostara and Mabon. I felt it was a blessing to carry with us all through the year.

Northern Brothers and Sisters: May what you sow this spring come to a bountiful harvest in the fall.

Southern Brothers and Sisters: May what you sowed in the spring be bring you a bountiful harvest this fall.

Remember we can sow different things for our own reasons they do not have to be something we plant in the ground and watch grow, they can be something we change in our lifestyle or in our spiritual or magickal path. Then when we harvest them they become part of us and who we are.

Sabbat: NH Ostara Sunday, March 22nd, SH Mabon Monday, March 23rd

All Witches and Pagans are invited to join the Heart’s Spirit Coven as we celebrate Ostara in the Northern Hemisphere and Mabon in the Southern Hemisphere

WHEN:

Sunday, March 22nd, 2020 NH

Monday, March 23rd, 2020 SH

At 6:00 PM CDT NH/ 10.00 AM AEDT SH

Circle starts at 7:00 PM CDT NH/ 11.00 AM AEDT SH- SHARP.

45 minutes will be allocated for a chance to talk to our Brothers and Sisters. Please do not enter the chat room once the circle has started. Thank you!

WHERE:

Heart’s Spirit Coven Chatroom

 

Beginning the Sabbat with a Universal Prayer

Just before we begin our Sabbat, I would like to acknowledge all that has happened and is happening in 2020, before and beyond. It is a significant time of much change and challenges for both humanity and the Great Earth Mother and all within her. Let us take a minute to pray for the universal healing in this time of need.

“May the Great Mother and Great Father give us strength and refuge in our time of need. Help us to remain calm and strong in the face of uncertainty, help us find compassion without the overwhelming feeling of empathy. Great Mother and Father teach me humility, acceptance and to remember my kindness”

So mote it be……..

 

Ostara in the NH

Ying Yang Drawing for OSTARA

 

You will need (aside from your altar usual set up)

See how to set up basic elemental altar below:

https://covenlife.co/2017/07/06/simple-basic-altar-set-up/

Green Candle

White candle

Yin/Yang  Symbol- cut out the wholes specified once printed, or you can draw or paint the symbol.

2 eggs colored one darker one lighter

 

Mabon in the SH

You will need (aside from your altar usual set up)

See how to set up basic elemental altar below:

https://covenlife.co/2017/07/06/simple-basic-altar-set-up/

 

A wicker basket

Red Apple

Fallen Branch

Seasonal fruit and vegetables

Incense of your choice

Knife to cut apple

Picture of a large pentacle (I use a pentacle disk or you can draw or print one on a piece of paper)

A candle-(the larger the better, one to re-light, whenever you wish to contemplate during the winter months over your magickal and mystical path. If your candle runs low transfer the light to another large candle with love and intent of the energy of the first. Contemplations are done for short periods of time so candle needs to burn for only a couple of minutes at a time, longer if you wish it is purely up to you. Note; DO NOT BLOW OUT CANDLE, SNUFF THE CANDLE INSTEAD)

See how to snuffing candle

Set up for Ritual:

Mabon SH

Sweep your circle with a broom clockwise (use whatever you have on hand, it’s about physically cleaning your space)

Place the wicker basket with seasonal fruit and vegetables in the center of alter

Tree branch to the right of the wicker basket

Ostara NH

Sweep your circle with a broom clockwise (use whatever you have on hand, it’s about physically cleaning your space)

Have your Yin/Yang symbol prepared, holes cut out as indicated on diagram provided ready for ritual

Hard boil your eggs, colour one darker than the other ready to place on symbol

Purify the self and the Environment NH & SH:

Take a shower or bath with your favorite oils

Play your favorite music

Burn your favorite incense

Meditate and ground yourself

Ostara is the beginning of spring, the season for new beginnings and the renewal of life through planting. This is the time we can now plant seeds and nurture them throughout the coming months to bare their fruit. What is it that you would like to plant in your life? What are you willing to nurture throughout the growing season? For this ritual as this season is also a time for re-birth, new life and fertility we will be concentrating on the symbology of the egg. Think of the dark and light as the feminine and the masculine. The Goddess and the God resorting your outer and inner balance.

Mabon is the second of 3 harvest festivals celebrating the equinox and the harvest of apples. On the day of the equinox, day and night is of equal length. For the next 6 months the nights will be longer than the days.  This is such a great time of abundance. All the hard work that it takes to collect the harvest, it is now a time to rest, reap what you have sown and take the time to look at you hopes and aspirations and reflect how they have manifested. Most importantly spend it with the people you love. This is a time of giving, sharing and loving.

 

Cast the Circle:

Hypatia Casting the circle-

To the Guardians of the North:

I call you into our Watchtowers to protect us.

 

To the Guardians of the East:

I call you into our Watchtowers to protect us.

 

To the Guardians of the South:

I call you into our Watchtowers to protect us.

 

To the Guardians of the West:

I call you into our Watchtowers to protect us.

 

I cast this circle three times three with the assistance of the Great Mother and the Great God.

I call Upon the Guardians of spirit to protect us from above and below. As is above so is below, as is below so is above. May the power of The Great God and The great Goddess join us within this circle now, to protect us and to work with us and allow us to see beyond the veil.

Protect us Great Mother and Great Father for all gathered here and those afar who are unable to be with us. Allow no negative energy to touch us, to harm us and that nothing we call upon will harm us and others. We come together in perfect love and perfect trust.

Greeting:

Hypatia – Merry meet brothers and sisters and honored guests.

Everyone – Respond Merry Greet. Please tell us your first name and state or country you are from.

Ceremony:

Please ALL light your main altar candles (not the Mabon or Ostara candles as yet)

Ritual begins:

Ostara

Place green candle to your left and the white candle to your right. Leaving enough room in the middle to place your Yin/Yang symbol.
Place the Yin/Yang symbol in between the lit candles. Place the darker egg into the hole in the lighter colored side of the Yin/Yang and the lighter colored egg into the hole in the darker side.
When done type in “Ready.”
We offer these eggs to Ostara as all new life grows from an eggs or a seed.
Ostara we ask you to bless these eggs to help us renew ourselves as Mother Earth wakens from her slumber. That we may find new life coursing through us as cleansing energy.
Oak King we ask that your fertilize the hopes and wishes we have written here so they may grow and come to fruition as the year progresses.
As the Spring Equinox is the balance of day and night as equals so is the relationship of all males and females. We ask Hecate and her Consort to bless our relationships with others be they men or women. That we feel equal to them and not above or below them.
Take the eggs and set them on the side. Tape the circle of opposite color into the now empty holes. (Before breaking the eggs to eat them write the same runes on to the circles now in the Yin/Yang symbol. The side you write them on should be the same color as the egg they are written on.
We will take a 2 minutes to complete the Yin/Yang symbol. When you are done type in “Blessed be”.

 

Mabon

Your wand in right hand, facing your alter, arms stretched out above head……….

“Autumn Queen and Harvest God I honor Thee. As the change of seasons begins the Wheel has turned once more. A time to reflect, a time to come together in the here and now in this sacred space where all time becomes one. The second harvest has been reaped, now take the time to rest and feel the change as the season passes from one to the next.

My Mother, go now and slumber

My Father go now and dream of re-birth”

Arms outstretched, lower your head and close your eyes, sit in contemplation for 30 seconds.

When ready open your eyes and lower your arms

Pick up the apple and place it on the pentacle

Cut the apple crosswise to reveal the pentagram bringing the elements into your life

Lift the half apple up as in offering and say….

“The year gives way to the next as the season passes and the Great Wheel turns. Ancestors, Guardians and Wise ones guide me. Every begging has an ending and every ending a new beginning”.

Light your Mabon candle now

Take a bite of the apple, put aside to share with nature later

Take the tree branch and shake in each direction, starting with the North, then West, South, East and say…….

“Allow me to remember the summer past as the days grow longer and the days shorter. Memories will warm my soul as the sunlight fades and hearth becomes inviting through this divine light of the candle dedicated to the Mother and Father.

Great Mother calls me forward to rest and lull myself to sleep with her songs as I cling myself to her bosom”.

Face the altar and branch held out in front of you and say……

“May I never forget the summer memories and continue to strive during the colder months. May I take this time to go within and reflect on the Mysteries that lead me to a better understanding of myself, of others and all that is in life and death”.

Put the tree branch back on the altar, take 30 seconds to contemplate about :

The symbols that you have mentally attached to this ritual,

The various projects that you will put in action over the winter months, no matter how small or insignificant they may feel.

After the ceremony please feel free to share the consecrated fruit and vegetables in a beautiful meal with family and friends. Make a beautiful dinner for all to enjoy and be thankful for what is.

 

CLOSING

Dismiss the circle:

  • To the Guardians of the North:

I dismiss and thank you from our Watchtowers and give Gratitude for protect us.

 

  • To the Guardians of the West:

I dismiss and thank you from our Watchtowers and give Gratitude for protect us.

 

  • To the Guardians of the South:

I dismiss and thank you from our Watchtowers and give Gratitude for protect us.

 

  • To the Guardians of the East:

I dismiss and thank you from our Watchtowers and give Gratitude for protect us.

 

As you leave here tonight may the Lady and Lord bless you with all that you need.

 

I bid you Blessings and great Joy Brothers and sisters of the Craft

 

Thank you and farewell

 

 

Earth Magic Oracle Cards – Gaia Nurturing

GAIA CARD

I bought this oracle deck because it called to me as a way to bring Mother Earther or Gaia or any other name of names we know this wonderful planet we live on. Gaia gives us unconditional love no matter how much humans disrespect her in a mirid of ways.

This card Gaia – Nurturing from, the Earth Magic Oracle Cards by Steven D. Farmer, tells me Gaia loves us unconditionally no matter how much humans disrespect her through too many people to us overusing natural resources through too many ways to list here. So let’s go with some highlights, not enough open space left in the “first world counties” to grow enough food to feed their overpopulation, and in “third world countries” where there is drought caused by too many manmade structures built on other parts of Gaia that causes the natural order of rain, evaporation of moisture to bring much-needed rains to fracking to over-harvesting medicinal plants, fungus, insects, etc that grow in the rain forests and or places to throwing trash where ever they are at which causes wildlife to live unnaturally using things such as plastic to build nests or trying to feed a cigarette butt to their offspring. to places using the oceans, other small and/or large waterways to dump garbage collected for the overpopulated cities or people just throwing things overboard to thousands of other big and small ways we rape, pillage, overuse and disrespect our beautiful, all-loving Gaia.

Ask yourself this question and really think about an honest answer you give yourself and to the younger generations following us. What should we be teaching not just from books about how Gaia, the waterways (this includes any kind of pond, stream, river, sea, ocean, etc) and the air we and they breathe but also how we choose to be part of the solution in helping, honoring, and most of all living in harmony with her. Or are you going to be part of the problem of continuing to use up Gaia’s many resources she gives us freely as well as lovingly? Or are you somewhere in between these two positions?

 

MAMA BIRD

pacific-garbage-i

Pacific Ocean Garbage Patch

Remember we are the key to changing so we can live in harmony once more with Gaia

Travel Altar Video

This is a topic we have visited before on the website but since it is getting warmer, supposedly, in the Northern Hemisphere it a great time to find a forest preserve or any other place you feel comfortable doing a ritual. This is wear your travel altar will come in handy.

Travel Altars

If you have a travel altar and would like to share pictures of it with us, we would really like to show them off to other witches. Send the pictures to covenlifescoven@gmail.com. Subject line should read “Travel Altar”

Lammas Tisane- Ceremonial Tea

A images

Written for Coven Life

03/02/2020

By priestess Hypatia

 

Tea Anyone?

Tisanes are herbal tea that traditionally included barley.

Lammas

Lammas is the first harvest celebration, marking the transition from summer to fall and celebrating the bounty and abundance of the garden.

Spell crafting Herbal teas is a personal favorite of mine, especially herbs personally selected to reflect your intentions and the turning of the seasons. Such teas are a wonderful way to honor the seasons during your ceremony.

First harvest Tea Blend for Lammas

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup dried calendula blossoms
  • 1/4 cup dried lavender buds
  • 1/4 cup dried meadow sweet
  • 1/4 cup oolong tea leaves
  • Optional: 1 tablespoon dried grated ginger

Instructions

  1. Combine all ingredients in a tea strainer or bag.
  2. Pour hot water over the strainer and steep 3-5 minutes

 

Calendula– a beautiful bright beam of sunshine their bright orange and yellow petals are a beautiful representation of seasonal transitions.

Lavender– Often associated with Lammas, this beautiful plan ally will help you begin the descent into the waning and restful portion of the year.

Meadow sweet– All heal of the ancients. Acting as a natural pain killer because of its salicylic acid content, the same ingredient that makes aspirin. Wonderful for third eye activation, divination and honing of your skill.

Oolong– Adding a layer or complexity to this otherwise airy tea. Its earthiness encourages wisdom through reflection.

Ginger– Only a small amount is needed to reach its maximum benefit. Its distinct spicy notes encourages success, money and love.

Imbolc Charm Bags

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Written for Coven Life

On 03/02/2020

By Priestess Hypatia

 

Creating seasonal charms is one of my favorite types of spell work.  You can generally make them from things you may already have on hand, or easily pick up at your local craft and nursery stores. The best ingredients are from my random collectables I have gathered from Nature Herself.

Spells crafted at this time of the year focus new beginnings, fresh starts and new growth. Think of it as the New Moon Phase. Ostara is like the waxing moon where you take action and Beltane is the time you see the manifestation, so you can compare this to the Full moon phase.

Set Your Intention

So before we start crafting the Charm bag for Imbolc let’s set our intention-

You can either choose a specific project or goal you want to manifest or you can focus on general new beginnings. For a specific goal, I would recommend adding at least one or two elements to these ingredients to give the spell focus.

Ingredients

  • Small piece of clear quartz, preferably charged at the new moon
  • Pine needles- purification
  • Cinnamon sticks- power
  • Nettles- strength in overcoming obstacles
  • Daffodil petals- fertility
  • Dandelion puffs – making wishes come true
  • White muslin or sheer sachet to place the ingredients in

Method

  1. Light a couple of white candles, or one of your favorite scented candles
  2. Take the pine needles in your hands and rub them to release the scent. Sprinkle the pine needles in the bag and say: “I cleanse and bless this spell, home and hearth”. I also like to put a couple of drops of fir pine essential oil in.
  3. Place the cinnamon stick and quartz in bag and say: “To lend power to this spell”.
  4. Place the daffodil petals in the bag and say: “To create a fresh start and a fertile beginning”
  5. Sprinkle the Nettles and say: “ This is to overcome obstacles on my path to realization of manifesting my intentions”
  6. Now tie the bag and place somewhere such as your lingerie drawer or our car glove compartment.

The above ingredients is just a sample of the endless possibilities that are accessible to you. It depends on your intentions. Rose quarts for love and friendship, Ginger root for fire and power, violet for protection, you get the gist.  Remember to research your ingredients and understand that their energy represents your intention needed.

Imbloc/Lammas Gathering Sunday, February 2, 2020/Monday, February 3, 2020

Any Witch or Pagan is welcome to come celebrate Imbolc and Lammas with us. Everyone attending needs to stay until the rituals for both hemispheres are done. It is up to you if want to do both rituals. For these Sabbats we are doing something new the sacred circles and Watchtowers will be called and dismissed for each hemisphere. We ask that you do not print these rituals out but you are welcome to bookmark them for future use.

NORTHERN HEMISPHERE – RITUAL FOR THE SABBAT IMBOLC: IN HONOR OF THE GODDESS GAIA AND GOD AENGUS OG  Written and Led by our novice Melinda.

SOUTHERN HEMISPHERE – RITUAL FOR THE SABBAT LAMMAS: IN HONOR OF THE GODDESS HARVEST MOTHER AND GOD LUGH Written and Led by our adept Dawn of the Day

WHEN:

Northern Hemisphere –

Sunday, February 2, 2020

Chatroom opens at 3:00 PM CT

Circle will be cast at 4:00 PM CT

Southern Hemisphere –

Monday, February 3, 2020

Chatroom opens at 8:00 AM AEDT

Circle will be cast at 9:00 AM AEDT

WHERE:

Heart’s Spirit Coven Chatroom

If you have applied to be in the chatroom and have not received a reply yet, it will come to you at least 5 minutes before the circle is cast on Sunday. No approval for entering the chatroom when we are only 5 minutes away from casting the circle to begin the Imbolc and Lammas Rituals.

RITUALS:

EVERYONE: Set up your altar before the ritual starts. Placing an object represents .each of the elements so they form a pentagram.

In the upper right-hand point of the pentagram –

Air: Dream catcher, feather, incense, any object that you are drawn too

Lower right-hand point of the Pentagram

Fire: A symbol of the Sun, red or orange candle, a picture of a fire.

Lower left-hand point of the Pentagram

Earth: gnome, a bowl of salt or dirt, or object of your choice

Upper right-hand point of the Pentagram:

Water: Seashell, a bowl of water, any type of sea creature, object of your choosing

Top point of the Pentagram Spirit:

Angel Statue or whatever represents the element of Spirit to you.

Goddess: Goddess candle will be on the right side of altar decorate in color of green. You can also use green crystals in place of the candle which are green calcite, amber. Fragrances can be used such as honeysuckle or cypress, or any flower, or a picture of Gaia.

God: Gods candle will be on left side of altar decorate it in the colors of Green, pink, or red. You can also use crystals such as Rose Quartz, Peridot, Copper. Incense such as Sandal wood, Rose, or Lavender, Or a picture or statue of the God Aengus.

Casting the Circle:

Raven Spiritwalker: We walk this circle clockwise three times asking that all who are in it or outside of it be kept safe and no harm to no one.

EVERYONE: Face your altar and touch what is representing the Goddess and say:

“Gaia, our mother, You who nourishes all living things I honor and pray to thee, guide us and thank you for the promise of the return of Spring.”

Now touch what is representing the God and say:

Aegnus, God of love, youth, and poetic inspiration, guide us from this day forward and thank you for the promise of the return of Spring.”

(Now light the incense or candle if you are using one)

Mediate for 1 minute to allow the rise of power from the Goddess and God

When you have meditated for a minute with the God and/or Goddess please type “DONE”

Opening the Circle:

To the Guardians of the West, Archangel Gabriel:

We dismiss you from our Watchtower and thank you for protecting us.

To the Guardians of the South, Archangel Michael:

We dismiss you from our Watchtower and thank you for protecting us..

To the Guardians of the East, Archangel Raphael:

We dismiss you from our Watchtower and thank you for protecting us..

To the Guardians of the North, Uriel:

We dismiss you from our Watchtower and thank you for protecting us.

Raven Spiritwalker: We walk this circle counter-clockwise three times asking that all who are in it or outside of it be kept safe and no harm to no one.

(You can go back and commune with the Gods and/or Goddesses from one or both rituals after the Southern Hemisphere circle is opened)

Remember to offer a bite to the God and Goddess of your favorite snack and drink to give thanks to the God and Goddess. 

Lammas ritual

Lammas is known as the 1st of the 3 harvest festivals, it is still a time of hot intense sun but the days are starting to get shorter.  The grain is starting to ripen in the fields along with some of the fruits on the apple trees.

The goddess is pregnant and the god is still very strong but slowly weakening as we move into fall.  The animals are fattening for the winter slaughter and there is a push to start the process of storing food away for the lean months but at this time the days are still easy

Items needed for the ritual:

Apples, grapes, bread

gold or yellow cloth

sunflowers or raw wheat

Incense sandalwood and frankincense

Have a candle on your altar to represent the Harvest Mother — choose something in orange, red or yellow.

Corn husk or two

Place symbols of your craft or skill on the altar—a notebook, your special paints for artists, a pen for writers, other tools of your creativity. To represent the god Lugh

Please decorate your altar properly with a yellow or gold cloth, a nice sunflower and or a sheath of wheat, maybe an apple or a few grapes and/or a loaf of bread. This is to represent the sun  in the yellow or orange cloth.   A goblet of ritual wine is optional.

EVERYONE IN SOUTHERN HEMISPHERE: We open the ritual with the walking around the circle 3 times in a counter clockwise direction.  We first point at the ground with our dominate hand asking the earth for its power to make this circle secure for the work we are to do here.  We walk a second time with our dominate hand outstretched at shoulder level asking water to secure our circle and finally we walk a third time with our hand pointed to the ceiling asking  air to help secure our circle and the work that we do here.  We finally say what is above is below and what is below is above we have created a circle to protect ourselves while we do our work may we harm no one and may no one harm.

Starting in the west and while touching the item that represents the west say watchtower of the west please help us with our circle today and protect us as we do our work

Next is the south and while touching the item that represents the south say watchtower of the south please help us with our circle today and protect us as we do our work

Next the east and while touching the item that represents the east say watchtower of the east please help us with our circle today and protect us as we do our work

Finally in the north and while touching the item that represents the north say watchtower of the north please help us with our circle today and protect us as we do our work

Light the candle, and say:

The wheel of the year is upon use

The food is plentiful and soil fertile

With this ritual we ask for the blessings

Of the Mother of the harvest

In honor of the Harvest we now will make a representation of the goddess using your corn husk and once the ritual is over please leave it on your altar to honor the goddess.

PLEASE READ THE DIRECTIONS BEFORE THE GATHERING AND PRINT THEM OUT OR TAKE NOTES SO YOU KNOW HOW TO MAKE IT.

Here is an example of how to make a corn husk doll

When you are done please type the word “DONE”

 

Now we will finish our ritual.  Point to the ceiling with your dominate hand and walk in a counter clockwise direction and say thank you air for your protection of our circle.  Now at shoulder level walk around the circle in a counter clock wise manner and thank water for the protection of our circle.  Finally point to the ground and walk in a counter clockwise manner thanking earth for protecting our circle.  Finally raise your hands above your head bring them down and point your palms at the ground and send any extra energy into the earth to help and heal our Mother.  End with the comment our circle is now open but it is never broken our work is done now may everyone go in peace.

Starting in the north and while touching the item that represents the north say Thank you to the watchtower of the north for helping us with our circle and you may leave if you must but stay if you like

Next is the east and while touching the item that represents the east say Thank you to the watchtower of the east for helping us with our circle and you may leave if you must but stay if you like

Now the South and while touching the item that represents the south say Thank you to the watchtower of the south for helping us with our circle and you may leave if you must but stay if you like

Finally is the west and while touching the item that represents the west say Thank you to the watchtower of the west for helping us with our circle and you may leave if you must but stay if you like

Blessed Be

Please enjoy some of the gifts from your altar, take a sip of the wine some of the bread etc.  Make sure you have enough, to enjoy the treats, also that you can leave some on the altar but also make sure you share some with the creatures of nature.  As you eat of your sacrifices remember and meditate on how the cycle of life goes from the seed to the plant and then back to seed to start all over again just like the wheel of the year continues to cycle through birth, adolescents, maturity, age, death and then of course rebirth.

References for Lammas ritual:

https://witchesofthecraft.com/tag/lammas-ritual/

Wicca Wheel of the Year Lisa Chamberlain pgs 88-95

https://www.learnreligions.com/setting-up-your-lammas-lughnasadh-altar-2562171

https://www.almanac.com/content/seasonal-crafts-cornhusk-doll