Week 3 – More Information on and Images of Gaia

This is a link for a general search for the Goddess Gaia, there are a few different spellings of her name as there are with all Gods and Goddesses.

Gaia Information

Gaia’s image has been depicted in many ways through different cultures so explorer the images until one jumps out at you like your idea of what she may look like.

Gaia Images

When I am asked what kind of Witch I am, first let me say I really do not like to label anyone as one type of Witch or another because to me that is narrow-minded thinking, but my answer is, “I’m an Earth Witch.” Because I work a lot with Gaia in her form as Mother Earth and the Triple Goddess. I can feel her wax and wane during the seasons of the year and my spirit, mind, and body flow along with her. I suppose in Neo-Pagan terms, I am an Eclectic Witch.

I also work with the Moon Goddess Luna or The Triple Goddess depending on what I am doing and when. I just never think or picture Luna as a Crone. The reason I work with her is she and Gaia work in a beautiful dance of harmony to help all living beings on this planet to live.

As for Gods, my main go to for many things is Ra especially if I am doing a spell and/or ritual during the day. He also works in harmony with Luna and Gaia to keep the planet we live on not to hot or cold and offers us his light. His light and warmth are very important during the growing seasons to help ensure a bountiful harvest. Whichever name for the Sun God you prefer is fine.

From Gaia, Ra, and Luna the elements of Air, Water, Fire, Earth, and Spirit are possible.

The above mentioned Gods and Goddesses are who I prefer to work with. Each person needs to find the deity or deities they find it easiest to work with most of the time. There are times to branch out to different ones that may help with a specific spell and/or ritual. Example when I doing healing work I call upon Kwan Yin (oriental Goddess) and Sirona (Celtic Goddess) to work through me to help whoever I am sending healing to.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Week 3 – Goddess Knowledge – Gaia

This week we are going to find out more about the Goddess Gaia. Which is also another name given to Mother Earth by Neo-Pagans. 

GAIA

Gaia existed before everything; she existed before time. Gaia, the eternal, prehistoric earth mother goddess,, is fertility incarnate, moist, mysterious, strong. She is life energy itself; everything that lives, breathing or not, overflows with her life. She is the earth and all powers of the earth. Gaia is not always a consoling goddess: standing for life and generation without thought of consequence, she has energy and a power that must be approached carefully. All bodies eventually return to her, into the black, fertile earth, to be devoured and to receive her life to live again. As goddess of the soul, Gaia reminds us that the soul develops in dark places and that ultimately soul must be rooted in the body, in earth. She is a reminder that we must ground ourselves into the reality of nature and incorporate all sides of ourselves, be the pleasant or unpleasant, light or dark.

For more information about Gaia click on this general search link: Information about Gaia

Gaia is also known as Mother Earth here is a link for more information on this name for the same Goddess: Information about Mother Earth

Link for a general search for images of Gaia:Images of Gaia

The general search for images of Mother Earth is basically the same as for Gaia.

Willow ~ a tree witch

Willow

Willows which by water stand
Ease us to the Summerland.

 

Salix alba

Tree of Enchantment, Tree of Witcheries

Fifth month of the Celtic Tree calendar, 

April 15th – May 12th

 

Fifth consonant of the Ogham alphabet – Saille


Saille Ogham

Planet: Moon

Element: Water

Symbolism: Resonance and Harmony

Stone: Moonstone

Birds: Hawk, Snowy Owl

Color: Silver

Deity: Persephone, Hecate, Cerridwen, 

Artemis, Selene, Luna, Diana, Brigit

Sabbat: Beltane

Folk names: Osier, Pussy Willow, Saille, Salicyn Willow, Saugh Tree, White Willow, 

Witches Aspirin, Withe, Withy

 

Medicinal properties

Willow bark contains salicin, or Salicylic acid, used to make aspirin. 

Infusions from the bark have long been used as a remedy for cholls, rheumatism, and fevers. 

Willow sap applied to the skin can remedy acne, and a strong decoction of boiling 

the bark and leaves in water can be rubbed into the scalp for dandruff.

 

Magickal properties

New Moon magick, creativity, fertility, female rights of passage, inspiration, emotion, binding. Love, Love divination, protection, healing.

 

Also known as the tree of immortality because of its ability to 

re grow from a fallen branch in moist ground.

 

A wand made from Willow wood has many uses: 

sleep with it and have more vivid dreams, use it to draw down the moon, 

protection for underworld journeying

 

Magickal Brooms, witch’s brooms are traditionally bound with a willow’s branch.

 

 

There once was a Willow, and he was very old,

And all his leaves fell off from him, and left him in the cold;

But ere the rude winter could buffet him with snow,

There grew upon his hoary head a crop of mistletoe.

All wrinkled and furrowed was this old Willow’s skin,

His taper finger trembled, and his arms were very thin;

Two round eyes and hollow, that stared but did not see;

And sprawling feet that never walked, had this most ancient tree.

~Julianna Horatia Ewing, “The Willow Man” ”

Read more from the original post

Thanks to

http://www.thegoddesstree.com/trees/Willow.htm

Books to Read Suggestions

Many of us have books in our library on The Craft that we enjoy reading and learning from. A few of my favorites are:

Witchcraft An Alternative Path by Ann Moura

The Wiccan Handbook by Eileen Holland

Celtic Magic by D. J. Conway

I will add others I like as time goes on. Please let me know what your favorites are so I can add them to this list. Either leave the name and who wrote it in a comment or email me the same and I will add it to the list. If you email me the name of the book(s) and the author tell whether to include you name as it being recommended by or not. Thank you

Wicca, Witchcraft or Paganism? What’s the Difference, Anyway?

This is written by:

Question: What’s the difference between Paganism, Wicca and Witchcraft?

A reader asks, I met a woman who is a witch, but she says she’s not Wiccan. Then there’s some guy I know who says all Pagans are Wiccans. Even more confusing, this site says Wicca AND Paganism, like it’s two different things. What’s going on?

Answer:

Wicca is a tradition of Witchcraft that was brought to the public byGerald Gardner in the 1950s.

There is a great deal of debate among the Pagan community about whether or not Wicca is truly the same form of Witchcraft that the ancients practiced. Regardless, many people use the terms Wicca and Witchcraft interchangeably. Paganism is an umbrella term used to apply to a number of different earth-based faiths. Wicca falls under that heading, although not all Pagans are Wiccan.

So, in a nutshell, here’s what’s going on. All Wiccans are witches, but not all witches are Wiccans. All Wiccans are Pagans, but not all Pagans are Wiccans. Finally, somewitches are Pagans, but some are not – and some Pagans practice witchcraft, while others choose not to.

If you’re reading this page, chances are you’re either a Wiccan or Pagan, or you’re someone who’s interested in learning more about the modern Pagan movement. You may be a parent who’s curious about what your child is reading, or you might be someone who is unsatisfied with the spiritual path you’re on right now. Perhaps you’re seeking something more than what you’ve had in the past.

You might be someone who’s practiced Wicca or Paganism for years, and who just wants to learn more.

For many people, the embracing of an earth-based spirituality is a feeling of “coming home”. Often, people say that when they first discovered Wicca, they felt like they finally fit in. For others, it’s a journey TO something new, rather than running away from something else.

Paganism is an Umbrella Term

Please bear in mind that there are dozens of different traditions that fall under the umbrella title of “Paganism”. While one group may have a certain practice, not everyone will follow the same criteria. Statements made on this site referring to Wiccans and Pagans generally refer to MOST Wiccans and Pagans, with the acknowledgement that not all practices are identical.

Not All Pagans are Wiccans

There are many Witches who are not Wiccans. Some are Pagans, but some consider themselves something else entirely.

Just to make sure everyone’s on the same page, let’s clear up one thing right off the bat: not all Pagans are Wiccans. The term “Pagan” (derived from the Latin paganus, which translates roughly to “hick from the sticks”) was originally used to describe people who lived in rural areas. As time progressed and Christianityspread, those same country folk were often the last holdouts clinging to their old religions. Thus, “Pagan” came to mean people who didn’t worship the god of Abraham.

In the 1950s, Gerald Gardner brought Wicca to the public, and many contemporary Pagans embraced the practice. Although Wicca itself was founded by Gardner, he based it upon old traditions. However, a lot of Witches and Pagans were perfectly happy to continue practicing their own spiritual path without converting to Wicca.

Therefore, “Pagan” is an umbrella term that includes many different spiritual belief systems – Wicca is just one of many.

Think of it this way:

Christian > Lutheran or Methodist or Jehovah’s Witness

Pagan > Wiccan or Asatru or Dianic or Eclectic Witchcraft

As if that wasn’t confusing enough, not all people who practice witchcraft are Wiccans, or even Pagans. There are a few witches who embrace the Christian god as well as a Wiccan goddess – the Christian Witchmovement is alive and well! There are also people out there who practice Jewish mysticism, or “Jewitchery”, and atheist witches who practice magic but do not follow a deity.

What About Magic?

There are a number of people who consider themselves Witches, but who are not necessarily Wiccan or even Pagan. Typically, these are people who use the term “eclectic Witch” or to apply to themselves. In many cases, Witchcraft is seen as a skill set in addition to or instead of a religious system. A Witch may practice magic in a manner completely separate from their spirituality; in other words, one does not have to interact with  the Divine to be a Witch.

http://paganwiccan.about.com/od/wiccaandpaganismbasics/a/WWPDiffs.htm From and Owned by About.com