From the Editor...
The Invisible Generation - Pagan Elders
I have never been the type to be concerned about my age, although at times I think it is quite incredulous that I managed to get to this age in my life so quickly; time certainly flies when you are having fun.
Personally I have never thought of age as being a barrier to anything that I wanted to do. My father had instilled in me from an early age that I have the ability do anything that I put my mind to. This wonderful advice has stayed with me all my life and has been the impetus for me breaking through several glass ceilings placed before me throughout my working life.
Unfortunately we live in a youth oriented society where looking young has become a multi-billion-dollar industry. The sad aspect of this attitude about looks and age has the unfortunate power of curtailing an individual's ultimate potential and talents at a relatively early age and thus depriving us of new skills and creative developments in many mediums such as art, writing, photography, music and technical innovation. Interestingly, this type of ageism is not only directed at today's baby boomers which I am one of, but also at the old of tomorrow - the X & Y generations - a kind of pre-emptive negative stereotyping.
As a growing community we should recognize the perspective which is actually an ancient and indigenous perspective on aging - that with old age come many positives, especially the lived experiences and perspectives that are referred to as 'wisdom'. There is a perception that the concept of respecting our elders appears to be disappearing, particularly with the younger generations.
Recently there had been some discussions on Facebook about the devaluing and disappearance of our pagan elders in our community and I thought that Axis Mundi would be an ideal forum to raise this important topic and to gauge other pagans' viewpoints.
Perhaps the word disappearance is incorrect; perhaps our elders have merely become invisible by choice, having felt neglected or grown weary of the attitudes of the current pagan community and have simply left, retreated to their own private circles or have become solitaries.
I have to admit that occasionally I have felt like I have become 'invisible' to the community. I'm not sure if is from an age related invisibility or from 'the not being accepted' perspective, which could partly be related to some ageist attitudes, and partly related to my eclectic beliefs. There is a possibility that I could be leading myself down the garden path through my own somewhat distorted perceptions. But through talking to and hearing what other pagans have to say there is something amiss here and only through honest discussion can we bring our thoughts, desires and fears out into the open and bring about some positive resolutions.
I would like to state there is also an onus on our Elders not to recede into the background but to stand in their power and help break through the attitudes that are currently facing them and start sharing their experience and knowledge. It is after all a two way relationship.
In this issue of Axis Mundi we have included some articles and viewpoints relating to our older and wiser pagans and we would love to have some input from our readers. Let us know your views on whether you agree or disagree that our pagan elders are becoming the 'Invisible Generation' and some suggestions on what we can do the change the situation.
Nobody grows old merely by living a number of years. We grow old by deserting our ideals. Years may wrinkle the skin, but to give up enthusiasm wrinkles the soul. ~ Samuel Ullman
SOL's Full Moon Circles
As many people go away on holidays for the Xmas/New Year school holiday period Spheres Of Light takes a break from conducting Full Moon Circles during this time.
Our first Full Moon Circle for 2011 will be held near Engadine on Friday February 18. Please contact us for further details if you would like to attend.
Transcripts and occasional photographs from all of our past circles can be found in our Book Of Shadows.
General information about our circles plus dates for 2011 can be accessed by clicking on the image here at the left, or the linked images in the column at the right.
Pagan Fallacies - A Perspective
Over the years I have always advocated for a genuine pagan community, but as the years pass my hopes for such a community is beginning to falter.
Many Elders have left the community at large and have retired to their own private covens and such. They no longer have any desire to be associated with what is now passing for the pagan community, preferring instead to practice their art as either a solitaire or in closed gatherings with those who still follow the old ways as it was once followed. They are choosing to shun what passes for the current pagan community and thus avoid being drawn into all of the inane and worthless drama that seems to be so prevalent these days. With the intervention of the internet, being rude and obnoxious to those who may have something to share based upon years of genuine experience has become commonplace. And why not one may ask, with the internet one can remain comfortably anonymous without taking responsibility for ones actions. The level of arrogance that is so common in today's society was simply not an accepted feature of their generation. And in this day and age, taking responsibility for ones actions is almost a thing of the past, a past that many qualified elders hail from.
Many of these wise and experienced folks were raised at a time when young folks respected their Elders. A time when patience and a desire to learn was far more important then exhibiting one's inflated ego or claiming to be a "master" of this or that discipline at the ripe age of 30 something. It seems as if the pagan path is being overwhelmed by the 20 and 30 something's who have no desire to learn from those that went before them. The term that society is applying to such self absorbed folks is "millennium kids". Such folks are re-inventing the tenets of paganism to fit their own perception of how things should be. Which in and of itself would be a good thing, except that these young folks were raised in a generation of instant gratification and with a severe lack of interpersonal relationships. Being weaned via the internet and video games simply does not take the place of years of tutelage under an Adept. And yet the craft is bloated with such pseudo masters who sneer at folks who are many years their senior and who have vastly more genuine experience.
The younger generation of pagans is also floating a number of flawed concepts that until addressed, will continue to keep any semblance of a pagan society from forming. One of these ill thought out concepts is that Elders are chosen at will by members of the community. This is simply not true.
First of all the pagan community is at best an acronym for a wide variety of divergent beliefs that use the description "pagan community" as a way of identifying those folks who engage in the mystical arts. There is actually no real such community at the state or national or international level with the authority and/or endorsement of said divergent groups, who can realistically choose such Elders per se.
Another obvious yet oft overlooked fact is that Elders are actually chosen by their respective paths and within these various paths by the independent gatherings such as a coven, blot or what have you. No respective members of such a gathering would ever allow someone/s from outside their individual disciplines to choose "their" Elders. To simplify this further, the Druid would not let a Wicca to choose their Elders. A shaman would not let a Voudon to choose their Elders and so on and so forth.
The idea that the "community" chooses everyone's Elders is simply a fallacy being proffered by the young and in all reality, inexperienced folks who are not seasoned enough to understand that this is a misconception.
Another proffering that is ill thought out is that a pagan community can be patterned off of the same mold as the so called organized religions. As long as this fallacy is prevalent in our thoughts there will never be a true pagan community. With each coven and/or gathering being independent of each other, at best, all we can hope for is a loose federation. Anything else is unrealistic.
One argument in favor of this is that organized religions for the most part follow the same God, even if the approach and translations are different, they have one Deity. They also have basically one book, again with various interpretations, that forms an accepted pattern for their beliefs.
Paganism has a huge influx of Deities and interpretations for each of them. We engage in practices of a magical nature that are not a part of the doctrine of organized religion. Our books (BOS's for those of witchcraft and Wicca) vary from one person to the next. And in fact many pagans of various paths do not keep even these books as part of their practices, relying instead on other doctrines and means of employing their beliefs.
In short, we are diametrically different from the folks who form the various organized religions. I personally believe that the fallacy that the pagan community can be fashioned in like manner comes from the massive influx of former members of these said religions.
There is a great deal to be said for the adages that "when in Rome do as the Romans do". The reasoning behind this is that if one chooses to engage in a culture of beliefs different from ones former culture then you don't try to change the adopted culture to your former experience but rather you learn to assimilate yourself to the chosen culture you are currently engaging in.
We may live in a global society, but in all reality, pagan groups still follow the concept of small and independent villages where there is no central government. Every group has its own leaders and it is unrealistic to think that all of these independent leaders could and for that matter should be grouped into one entity. Thus there is the adage pertaining to pagans of "herding a bunch of cats together". We are in all reality, individuals.
And if we are ever to obtain some semblance of a pagan society then we should consider actually living up to the tenets of diversity and acceptance. Just mouthing the words and then attacking those who try to walk the walk will simply keep us in the static state of affairs that we are currently in as far as a belief system.
In all reality, how can we expect other belief systems to view paganism as a serious and thus acceptable community of religious/spiritual beliefs when we don't present ourselves as a mature gathering capable of acceptance and understanding? And until we find the maturity to comprehend and address the fallacies that we are inflicting upon ourselves, we will continue to fumble about in search of that elusive concept known as community.
At the end of the day we may want to ask ourselves, do we want to continue to assist society in its downward spiral or do we truly want to be a part of an enlightened society within the world society?
We lead by example, what will that example be?
Crick is a simple witch and student of Shamanism who is dedicated to the love and worship of Mother Earth and all She contains. Crick is the founder and retired High Priest of Whispering Woods (after 10 years of service), a Celtic/Faery witchcraft coven. Crick now serves as the Senior Elder of Whispering Woods clan. Crick is a Master Geomancer, certified Master Herbalist and 3rd. Level Usui Ryoko Reiki and Sechim Master.
Age Data: Religious Experience Amongst
by Caroline Fielden
Followers of Nature-Based Traditions
During 2009 as part of attempts to diversify understanding of religious experience amongst followers of nature-based traditions, Dr. Tiliopoulos and Caroline Fielden, from The University of Sydney, Australia conducted research into the relationship between religious experience and particular aspects of personality. In particular they were looking for feedback from those who identify with nature-based religions - this being a community whose voice has yet to be properly heard in this type of research.
The data collected for the study of nature-based religions relating to age took into consideration any effects due to gender, the tradition followed, and the country of residence. Age was found to be a significant predictor of religious practices & experiences within individuals who follow nature-based religions. That is, it was shown that within this population, as people get older, they have a slight tendency to participate in more religious activities relevant to nature based religious beliefs. Also, as people get older, they have a moderate tendency to have more spiritual experiences that affect the way that they define reality. This suggests that age is a factor that discriminates between different populations within followers of nature-based religions. (Fielden & Tiliopoulos, unpublished)
Crone Archetype ~ Sheela-Na-Gig
by Janine Donnellan
With the media constantly portraying women as thin, young and beautiful, this unrealistic ideal adds growing pressure on women to cosmetically stay young rather than go with the flow and age gracefully. Take a look at Hollywood productions which constantly feature sex goddesses as the norm and you see an emerging development of complicated icons of female sexuality which distort the sacred nature of femininity and female sexuality.
Even in the pagan movement where the three stages of womanhood the maid, mother and crone are supposedly venerated, how often do you see a disproportionate amount of photos and pictures portraying Goddesses and woman in general as thin, young and sexy. Unfortunately the Crone archetype has been neglected, shoved to the back of our minds, and only brought out at Samhain. She has been made into the wicked witch of children's nursery times and fables. But really we should be seeing the Crone as a beautiful and spiritual woman of wisdom. She has done with childbearing and is now free to be herself and explore her own spirituality. She is the Matriarch, the keeper of tradition and she walks the line between twilight and darkness and understands the importance of death and renewal.
There is an ancient crone archetype that has fascinated me for sometime; she is Sheela-Na-Gig. This Celtic archetype of the Great Mother has appeared on churches, castles and other buildings in Britain since the middle ages, but undoubtedly is of much earlier origin. She is represented usually as a naked woman, squatting with knees apart, displaying her vulva and often presenting it with both hands. Sheela-Na-Gig figures closely resembled the yonic statues of Kali which still appear at the entrance to Hindu temples where visitors lick a finger and touch the yoni for luck.
There are many opinions as to what the Sheela figures represent and the opinions are as diverse as the shapes and styles of the Sheelas themselves and include Pagan Spirit, Mother Earth, Earth Goddess, Pagan Goddess, good luck symbols, fertility symbols, figures to celebrate womanhood etc.
All Sheelas are carved from stone, but how she is depicted varies from building to building. Some Sheelas have the breasts of a hag, shrunken and flat, or full, pendulous breasts that hang from the sides of her body or are neatly tucked under her arms. In the classic Sheela posture, and the most confronting of positions is where both hands pull open wide her vulva.
There are three different discussions surrounding the Sheelas and their pagan origin and purpose. The first is that they possess magical qualities that promote good luck and fertility. The second that they are figures which ward off evil. The third theory and the one that I feel is most appropriate is that they are representative of death, the concept of a womb as a tomb.
Whatever the theories are about this mysterious figure the one thought that comes to my mind is that she is unabatedly aggressively vital. This aspect of Sheela is truly the most confrontational and shocking. We are unaccustomed to viewing women this way, but Sheela makes us do so. She is not flaunting her sexuality but confronting as she displays her innermost parts. But why? Perhaps she is reminding us that she is the primal Mother or that her vulva spread wide is the doorway to the underworld - so that when we die we can return back to our mother. We as pagans view our planet as Mother Earth, and our death and burial can be seen as a return to the Mother. Sheela-Na-Gig would then be the path that leads us back to where we come from.
Yes indeed the crone holds many secrets and much knowledge. She passes on to us things such as the legends of our people, herbal remedies and old ways to cure the ill. The crone has been young, and has learned from her mistakes so she can teach us and guide us along the way.
I believe that Sheela-Na-Gig is more than a figure to ward of evil spirits, she is indeed a symbol of the great mother in her most powerful and confronting of forms, there is no soft focus and blurred lines when we look at Sheila-Na-Gig. She is in her most basic and primal position and she awakens us to the realities of the cycle of life, death and rebirth and the pain and the joy and the transformation that comes with each passing cycle.
We All Come From the Horned God
by Craig PhoenixWolf
In my last article I ended with a quote of a familiar chant for many.
We All Come From the Horned God
Adapted, original by Leonard D. Rosenburg
We all come from the Horned God
And to Him we shall return
Like a spark of flame
Rising to the Heavens
This chant has a counter part that most will know and has been used in ritual and pagan music;
We All Come From the Goddess
We all come from the Goddess,
and to her we shall return
Like a drop of rain
flowing to the ocean.
Fire and Water
It seems that Fire and Water are a constant presence in many Australian lives and certainly on our minds these past few months. Our hearts go out to those who have lost their lives, their homes and their businesses. This time of year we give thanks at Lammas for the gifts of the Gods. We also see that this is a time of change. Sadly so many have had change forced upon them. For many though there is plenty to be thankful for.
Those who were not affected by fire or flood are thankful of that. Those who know people in the affected regions that escaped harm are thankful for that. Those who escaped the danger with their lives and the lives of their families I am sure are thankful.
Lammas is a time of change. It marks the decline of the power of The Horned God in the world above. Slowly his strength here will wain. Tho Horned God soon will pass into the underworld to rule there through the Autumn and Winter but his passing is celebrated in the first harvest. Much as Christianity takes the Eucharist, we partake of The Horned God whose body nurtures the wheat and corn, his sacrifice to feed his people. His final act as the God of Life.
Much like Persephone, a Goddess whose time in the light brings life and growth and nurtures the crops. The Horned God also serves as the God of Death ruling the Underworld. It it The Horned God that draws back the veil between worlds at Samhain that allows the spirits to walk the Earth.
It is in this role that the resemblance to the Christian Devil is obvious but while the Devil is seen as a punisher and torturer of sinners; The Horned God is in fact ruler of all of the afterlife. Good and evil all fall under his domain. The Horned God remains a protector as he watches over the domain of the dead though the cold months.
For now though The Horned God still is here watching over us and the world. Warm days will continue for a while yet. The Sun shining warmly on the Earth. While floods and fires have taken their toll, we as the children of The Horned God and The Goddess; still have much to give thanks for.
So at Lammas we give thanks for the gift of the grains that nurture us and the sacrifice that The Horned God makes for us. We give thanks for families and friends. For our successes and even our failures as we have the opportunity to grow.
Blessings to you all at the time of gratitude.
Image: "Cernunnos" by Helene Grasset, from celticanamcara.blogspot.com/2010/10/celtic-halloween-all-souls-night.html
The Book Corner
Welcome to The Book corner! You will find in this section book reviews, new books coming out, interviews with authors and even information about authors signing or talking about their books. If you would like to suggest a book to be reviewed, or even if you want to give us your own review or give us information, please let us know!
We will focus on books about Paganism, Witchcraft, Magic, Shamanism, Paranormal Investigations, Earth-based Spirituality, and may also include books on mindfulness, eco-living and others we find interesting. Obviously reviews are based on personal opinion; they are not set on stone and are not meant to be the "ultimate guide". Also please keep in mind I am not a Journalist and do not intend to be one, I am simply a proud Pagan "nerd" who loves her books!
Practising the Witch's Craft:
Real Magic Under a Southern Sky
Edited by Douglas Ezzy
1865089125 : 1865089125
Allen & Unwin, 2003
I love this book! From the cover (and the lovely lady pictured on it ) through to the last page. I love it mostly because it's written by Aussies, for Aussies.
The book is basically a compilation of articles about different subjects, from what a Witch is to Gardening, Feminist Spirituality, Spellcraft, Sex and Magic, working with the Tarot and my personal favourite, a Pagan Birth. The articles are written by experienced Witches, including Tim Hartridge (his article is Sabbat Wine of the Witches) and Julia Phillips (The Magical Universe).
Because it is a compilation of different articles by different authors, you can read the book from beginning to end or you can read it by articles depending on what you are working on at the moment, your mood, or simply what appeals to you at that moment. They are all very personal accounts about the different topics; this to me meant that the book resonated with me in another level, beyond my mind; closer to my heart you could say. It allowed me to get closer to the authors in a way, to understand some of their points of view about Magic. So if you are interested in reading how other Witches practise their Craft, find a Coven, work with the Seasons, and many other topics, this is the book for you and I highly recommend it.
If on the other hand you are looking for a book containing more academic topics, if you are starting and need some information and exercises about how to be a Witch, if you need someone to tell you what to do, you will still find great information and deep insights into Witchcraft, Paganism and Wicca, but maybe this is not the book you need at this point.
New Books on the Block
Find Your Spirit Animals
By David Carson
Number Of Pages: 159
Product Category: Softcover
Publication Date: 28/02/2011
This illuminating book explains how to connect with and channel the unique powers of 50 different spirit animals - from the wise owl and crafty fox to the tranquil turtle.
Each entry provides a detailed description of the animal's personality, mythology and innate powers. Meditations and visualisations then take readers on a rewarding inner journey. Contacting with spirit animals will encourage you to be more courageous, resourceful and powerful. Find Your Spirit Animals also contains beautiful artwork by talented artists.
David Carson is the author of Crossing Into Medicine Country: A Journey Into Native American Healing. He was born in Oklahoma Indian Country and is of Choctaw descent.
Review by Doubleday (http://www.doubleday.com.au)
by Janine Donnellan
A shaman is a healer who helps people to understand and respect the natural and the supernatural world around them and within them. A Shaman is the mediator between the material world and the various astral realms and can walk between these realms at will.
An important aspect of Shamanism is the tools the shaman uses, these tools are physical representations of the tools that the shaman uses during his or her astral journeys. The tools e.g. the drum or the rattle can assist the shaman in entering an altered state of consciousness. Shamanic tools therefore focus and express energy received from Spirit which can be used for healing, diagnosis, cleansing, journeying and divination.
The main purpose of a Crane/Medicine bag is to hold magical objects of personal importance to the seeker; these can be feathers, leaves, healing herbs, rune stones, crystals, oils, incense, and other magical objects. These bags are also referred to as Witches Bags. The bag is usually made out of leather, chamois skin or a heavy cloth and is designed to be worn as a hip-bag/pouch.
The modern Crane/Medicine Bag can be made to any size and can be decorated with beads and feathers or other items that have special significance. Some prefer the small pouches while others create large carry bags to hold small altars and full sized tools. In reality these bags are never complete as there are always more magical objects to collect on your journey of discovery.
Once you have created your special bag you should do a small ritual to consecrate and dedicate it and create a spirit within the bag itself so that the bag itself becomes a magickal token and the items inside are part of what makes it work.
Carrying this medicine bag will increase your awareness of your own special sacredness and as you add to it throughout the years it becomes a spiritual scrap book of your life, your journey and your achievements. Don't forget that often the right tool or item will find you, just open your mind and heart to all possibilities and the universe will provide.
* Here is a tip: If you are making a bag and you are have trouble pushing the needle through the leather, use a hammer and nail to create guide holes before sewing.
Seeing as I've been writing herbe articles for the Axis Mundi for some time now, you might be wondering why I'm now advising about their care and storage, but it's never too late! The premise for this article came about because people were asking for small jars to store their herbes in, and this got me thinking. I know that many of you know how to take care and store your herbes, but it never hurts to refresh your memory. And if you're new to working with herbes, then this might be new to you.
I wasn't sure what crystal to write about this month. I was lacking in energy and direction not to mention tired, I was burning out. One day at work I was just cutting cards and not really thinking of anything when my mind cleared and I received a name, Goddess Pele.
In looking up information on Goddess Pele it became evident that the crystal I needed to write about had to relate to the goddess. Many sites credited her with Lava, understandably, others stones were also mentioned, among them Fire Agate.
Chiron enters Pisces - Feb 8/9, 2011
by Julija Simas
2011 is a big year for planets changing signs. This week Chiron the comet like asteroid, now reclassified as a Centaur, discovered in 1977 moves into Pisces. Chiron, a maverick centaur, half man, half beast, wise teacher of heroes and warriors, with a deep eternal wound in his thigh, has come to be known as the archetypal Wounded Healer. Chiron moved into Pisces last year briefly, and just days after this first ingress, most of us felt an incredibly deep wound fill our world as we heard of the unstoppable Mexican Gulf oil disaster. I remember hearing it being called a "spill" week after week, being totally astounded that it was being called a spill when it was clearly a catastrophe, spills can be cleaned up with a wettex. This wound was terrifying to all of us that care about the universal ocean, Pisces, our life giving support.
This time Chiron moves to stay in Pisces until 2018. As Chiron has an extremely elliptical orbit it spends different amounts of time in a zodiacal sign. With the longest time of 8 years in the sign of Aries and only 1.6 in the opposite sign of Libra. This move to Pisces, is the next shift on the planetary agenda, as next Uranus will move out of Pisces and into Aries and then Neptune too follows Chiron into Pisces in April 2011.
Photo by Min Simans - Floods, Melbourne Feb 5, 2011
These significant succession of ingresses to Aries and Pisces, highlights Aries beginnings, and endings Pisces. A seed germinating and forming - Pisces, followed by the sprouting and the birth of new life - Aries, the coming out of the universal ocean. This image is best described as a baby moving from mothers womb, to life out of the womb and breathing on its own. What are we as a collective germinating now? Uranus is about to leave Pisces, it has done a fine job of churning up the universal psyche, alerting us all to how interconnected we are and the universal cause to change how things have been. Uranus ensures that big changes and shifts are on the way when he moves out of Pisces and into Aries on March 11/12th. Now Chiron moves back to this fertile and destructive place Pisces, destructive because as Pisces germinates the seed of the future, it also destroys what is no longer necessary for the next cycle. We can all feel how important it is to have an idea of the future, what will it be, what is it we need to do? We also sense and feel anxious about what will unfold. This will be Chiron's role in Pisces, to make us sense all the fear, the dread, the hope, the waste, so we can get on with fixing things somehow and tend to the obvious and not so obvious wounds.
Chiron into Pisces is about the lessons that we still must learn, about the continual scaring and damage of the planet and the earth around us, as we continue to complain about climate change, rising water levels, pollution orpeak oil. As Chiron has been in Aquarius for the last 7 years, these wounds have been dressed with words and language and the growing skills of social networks building awareness. Now we asked to add a more spiritual focus to our world, the lessons and the learning are to come from the universal idea that all is one, our world belongs to all and a more instinctive connection to our environment is what Chiron alerts us to. This is what the healing is all about. What environments are our childeren growing up in? How do our societies breed the standards and values that our children grow up in? To grow up with the idea that I am better than he, I deserve more than he does, I want to grow up and be rich and have loads of money. Or can we have faith that values and attitudes are slowly changing. Pisces is extra sensitive to its enviroment and Chiron will help us bring a more passionate, compassionate and caring embrace to a world and it's people and the toxic greedy mess.
As Astrological consultants, we help people understand the pain of life and living by a good analysis of Chiron in their own lives, alerting them to learn from the past, integrate the pain of living, understand and how best to cope with their own mortal coil. When we translate this to a global scale, it becomes quite frightening. What we have to face up tos eems quite scary. Does it mean some things we want to and need to change can never be changed, things on planet earth have been scared for life and the reality of knowing that, hurts. It hurts and is deeply alarming.
This will be a trying time as we find it so hard to give up our dependencies to oil, to plastic, to being wasteful, to the overuse of pharmaceuticals to heal, to money, to power. The Economy is not Economic and there are so many other great imbalances, problems and issues within the world and its people and the environments we have created. We are about to embrace and relearn so much. Our common future depends on how we can heal, cleanse and move to a more spiritually guided way of living. We may try and hide, but there is nowhere to hide. Pisces is a sign that loves to ignore that which it is not passionate about, or loves to escape that which may be too hard to deal with, but Pisces also has the capacity to give so much, to give itself over to forces beyond itself for the good of all. Together Pisces and Chiron through pain and suffering lead eventually to enlightenment, a clearer picture and a deeply healed and spiritual place firstly within, then without.
When we look at the Ingress chart, the timing of Chiron moving into Pisces shows some significant signs as to how Chirons passage through Pisces will unfold over the next 8 years. Mars and Sun are in trine aspect to Saturn, this indicates a relentless urge to fight for change all the way, sticking to the fight, determined, strong and rewarding if we don't give up or give in 'cause its too hard. There is a strong focus on those that lead or will take charge. The Moon is opposite Saturn, this is what people want, real change, not just talk, they are prepared to stick to the plan, and stand up against strict regimes that don't change with the times. Eris, the goddess of discord stands close by to the Moon too, this warrior Princess and with the Moon in Aries too, denote a bunch of people getting on with it, real action and real change. Uranus at the end of Pisces alerts us to the instability of the years ahead.
Click image to enlarge
Chiron is well aspected to the karmic nodes, north and south, it shows the global priority to healing the planet, where we have been and where we are going is clearing up, the healing of the planet is a priority, Yeah! Ceres, Mercury and Neptune also with Sun and Mars all still in rational Aquarius, our common goals and visions of the future are strong and fixed and really need to be.
Jupiter is in square aspect to Venus and closely aligned with the asteroid Vesta. I take note of the asteroids and new dwarf planets when they are closely aligned to a planet or planets. In this case Vesta- the goddess of the hearth represents focus and indeed a spiritual one. Venus represents what we want, what we love, our values and our value systems. With the connection to Jupiter and Vesta, a focus on the truth is a big issue here, but also spiritual truth. Pluto is close by too, transforming our deep set truths about what's poosible and what is most need in this world, is a long and deeply organic process . It will be worth it in the end. We will no doubt see more focused women take charge and become more prominent in transforming global priorities, as both Venus and Vesta align with the North Node, we definitely need a more feminine approach to healing our scarred planet.
In your own personal journey this Pisces transit of Chiron, will bring all further access to deep healing, and eventually finding a deeper, more spiritual connection of what it means to be a global citizen, together with all it's problems. As global astrology informs us of the universal shifts taking place around us, we know that we learn so much from one gradual shift to the next. Chiron was in Pisces 50 years ago, but the world was not ready for what it is now, it was not as aware, and was not about to shift as strongly as it will be over the next 10 years or so.
With Chiron moving from Aquarius to Pisces, we know we have integrated and understood the global agenda, the cause, and now as we germinate the seeds of the future with Chiron's time in Pisces, it is vital that we do not repeat the same mistakes. What we will be doing is learning to live somehow with the mistakes we have made and finding ways to move on with a greater purpose, a more enlightened spiritual quest and implement change based on past regrets. Chiron and Pisces are both known for sacrifice, Chiron for taking on the punishment of the renegade Prometheus to finally free himself of his eternal wound, we all have to be prepared to give up something or alot through this vital phase of human evolution.
Article used with permission, from C*I*A Sixth Zone. Click on the banners below for more information.
Julija Simas is available for Astrological consultations and dream analysis, in person in Melbourne Australia, or anywhere in the world via skype. Inspirational, accurate and effective guidance and advice. Also available for lectures, group talks, workshops and private tuition. Payments via Paypal or EFT transfer. 30/60 and 90 minute or ongoing monthly services and readings available. Please feel free to contact me: firstname.lastname@example.org Phone - 0417 988 512 Find out more on Julija and Consultations here at the Cosmic Intelligence Agency.
February Tarot Reading
by Janine Donnellan
Three of Staffs
The Three of Staffs is a card of vision and foresight. In this reading the three of Staffs tells you to take the long view. Don't react to the heat of the moment, but step back and reconsider. See how the present fits into the greater picture.
This card is also asking you to be a visionary - to dream beyond current limitations. But to be a visionary you need to have a strategy in place and you must be willing to put in the hard miles. Your vision, your dream will not be handed to you on a golden platter. Spirit expects a real effort to be made and you need to prove your worthiness.
This is now the time for honesty in your dealings with yourself and others. Your self-confidence is high, but be careful that you are not over reaching at this stage. If you have a goal in mind it can be accomplished with steadfastness and determination. To achieve this goal it might require more of your time and work than you had originally expected and at this stage a lack of focus could result in failure.
Tarot card is from Glastonbury Tarot by Lisa Tenzin-Dolma
Issue 36 - SUMMER/AUTUMN, FEBRUARY 2011
SPHERES OF LIGHT (SOL)
ABN 46 385 794 818
We are based in Australia, in the Sydney-Illawarra area of NSW.
More about us...
For general inquiries...
Phone Janine on 0408 025 268
In addition to our regular Full Moon Circles we also run workshops and classes which are highly interactive and experiential, focusing on participation and engagement of participants. If you want to keep abreast of SOL's circles, gatherings, workshops and activities please click on the banner below to check out our Events Calendar.
SOuL Searchers is Spheres of Light's paranormal investigations subgroup. One of the many things you will find unique about the SOuL Searchers team, unlike the majority of other paranormal investigators, is that we undertake our investigations from a shamanic perspective.
SPACE CLEARING WORKSHOP
Sunday 20th February 2011
This is a 2 1/2 hour workshop to learn how to conduct a space clearing in your home or place of business.
Sometimes a house or office can feel uncomfortable, and there is no real reason to explain your uneasy feeling. Other times, it's easy: someone has been there that was negative, ill or died. There may be instances when you moved into a space and just felt like someone else was there, or the space just didn't feel right.
At this workshop you will learn the basic techniques to conduct a space clearing on your home or business. You will learn how to clear negative or stagnant energetic 'imprints' built up over the years from the accumulation of day to day living and from previous occupants. You will also learn how to remove unwanted entities that may be attached to your home.
Janine Donnellan from Spheres of Light & SOuL Searchers will be the facilitator of this workshop.
Where: Embrace, Shop 1015 Westfield, Miranda NSW 2228
When: Sunday 20th February 2011
Time: 5:00pm - 7:30pm
Cost: $60 includes notes and supper
Bookings: 02 9531 0009
Click image above to see Embrace on Facebook.
The Spheres Of Light Holistic Centre has within its members practitioners who can provide Spiritual Healing in a variety of natural healing modalities. Each modality is designed to heal all levels of the body; the physical, emotional, mental and spiritual bodies. Working with ancient universal energies, healing works to restore balance, bring inner harmony and peace, to re-energise the body, to stimulate the body's own immune system and so aid recovery, as well as inducing deep relaxation. Healing is excellent for relieving modern day stresses and providing support during difficult times in your life.
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The National Pagan Directory is a Spheres Of Light initiative to help Australian Pagans connect with each other in their local area. It is a FREE listing & provides links to information about covens, groups, classes, workshops, retreats & other special Pagan events, plus Aussie Pagan businesses & services. If you would like your coven, group, regular meet-up or special event to be listed in the NPD please send us your details. We also invite Celebrants in the Pagan community to promote their services in the NPD. For further information & contact details click on the banner above.
SOL Full Moon Circle
February 18 & March 18, 2011
Spheres Of Light holds regular Full Moon Circles near Engadine (Southern Sydney, Australia) on the Friday before each Full Moon. These Full Moon gatherings are Open Circles, meaning that all Pagans are welcome to come along any time and experience a Full Moon circle with us. Details here...
Come join us for meditation in the beautiful surrounds of The Royal National Park. Our meditations will be conducted every third Sunday of the month, although we will be taking a break over the Xmas - New Year period. Please email email@example.com for times and meet up details.
(Please Note: you must be over 18 years of age to attend any SOL gatherings, events, classes & workshops.)
PAGAN AND COMMUNITY EVENTS
Please email us the details of any pagan or community events, classes, workshops or regular meetings that you'd like to see promoted here in this free listing & in the National Pagan Directory.
PAN Full Moon Public Circle
Friday February 18, & Sunday March 20, 2011 at Seven Hills, Sydney (map)
Date: Friday February 18, 2011 at 8:30pm
then Sunday March 20, 2011 at 8:30pm
PAN Inc. full moon ritual. PAN runs a public full moon ritual each month at Rotaract Hill, Seven Hills. Anyone is welcome to attend - the purpose of the ritual is to provide members of the pagan community an opportunity to celebrate the full moon together & network with friends, it is also a public ritual where those new to paganism can attend to learn more and meet like-minded others, and the rituals also help inform the general public about what pagans do and dispel misguided myths about paganism and witchcraft.
The circle is held on the top of Rotaract Hill on Terminus Road Seven Hills NSW, just next to the train station. Getting there is easy. If you take the train, the hill is less than five minutes walk (and easily visible from the station). If you drive, there is plenty of parking available both at the base of the hill and across Terminus Road. Full Moon info and contact details here.
Summer Incense Recipe
This blend is useful when practicing any kind of dream magic, whether you seek answers for a question or prophetic dreams or desire to fare forth while sleeping. The formula contains herbs that open the gates of dream as well as those that have sedative properties. In addition many of the ingredients are classically associated with Summer and the Fey.
2 Tbsp Sandalwood
2 tsp Lavender
2 tsp Mugwort
2 tsp Chamomile
1 tsp Thyme
1 tsp Benzoin
1/8 tsp Guar Gum
Finely powder all ingredients, and then add just enough warm water to give the blend a consistency reminiscent of modeling clay. Then form into tall thin cones, the diameter of which should be no bigger than a pencil at the widest point. Also, tightly form the cone to avoid cracks. Cracks will get bigger as the cone dries and prevent the finished cone from burning. Allow them to dry in a cool environment and then enjoy.
Cucumber Stuffed Tomatoes
Is your veggie garden overflowing with cucumber and tomatoes? Try this recipe...
2 spring onions (or one very large one)
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons olive oil
3/4 teaspoon dried dill
3/4 teaspoon salt
black pepper to taste
4 ripe medium tomatoes
1 large or 2 small cucumbers
Cut the white part of the onions lengthwise, then slice the white and green parts finely. Place in a glass or plastic bowl. Add vinegar, olive oil and seasonings and mix well.
Wash and core the tomatoes. With a serrated knife, cut a thin slice off the top. Cut into the middle, around the inside, being careful not to get too close to the shell. With a teaspoon, scoop out the seeds and ribs inside the tomato, leaving a thin shell of flesh and skin. Turn upside down on a paper towel to drain. Place the insides in a plastic colander or strainer to drain.
Peel the cucumber. Cut lengthwise, and scoop out most of the seeds. Chop or cube finely. Do NOT liquefy in a food processor or blender! Add to the onion mixture and stir.
Press on the tomato remnants in the colander to remove most of the moisture. Turn out onto a cutting board and chop. Add to the onion and cucumber mixture and mix gently.
When ready to serve, fill the four tomato shells completely with the cucumber mixture. Make nests of torn lettuce leaves in individual salad bowls, then nestle a tomato in each bowl. Drain and spoon any leftover cucumber mixture onto the lettuce leaves, around the outside of the tomatoes.
Serve with steak knives for ease in eating. Serves 4.
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Publication Date approx. 20th/21st
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