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Friday, September 19, 2008

Banishing Old Memories Spell

Color of the day: White
Incense of the day: Yarrow

Get a white cord or ribbon, a green fluorite bead, a cup of water, and an empty bowl. Pour the water into the bowl, saying “River of forgetfulness, wash me clean and bless me. Take away [name the specific memory] and leave my mind strong and clear.” Dip the cord into the water, saying, “White of purity and innocence, renew me.” Dip the bead into the water, saying, “Stone of perspective, clear my mind.” Now concentrate on the memory, pouring it into the cord. The memory is gone from your mind and is now in the cord. Pour the water out on the ground. Put the bead on the cord. Wear the cord around your ankle or wrist until it falls off on its own. When the cord falls away, the memory will be completely gone.

By: Deborah Lipp

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Update: Palin's Anti-Pagan Coreligionists

Since I first posted about Republican VP nominee Sarah Palin's troubling co-religionists, the mainstream press and several major blogs have homed in on the blessing Palin received from the African Bishop Thomas Muthee.

"Palin describes the visit of Pastor Thomas Muthee to the Wasilla Assembly of God in 2005. "As I was mayor and Pastor Muthee was here and he was praying over me, and you know how he speaks and he's so bold. And he was praying 'Lord make a way, Lord make a way,'" Palin remarked. “And I'm thinking, this guy’s really bold, he doesn't even know what I'm going to do, he doesn’t know what my plans are," she continued. "And he’s praying not 'oh Lord if it be your will may she become governor,' no, he just prayed for it. He said, 'Lord make a way and let her do this next step. And that’s exactly what happened.'" “So, again, very very powerful, coming from this church,” she added." Click here for the full story

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Far From Stares And Jeers, Pagans Affirm Their Rites

The Reverend Kendra Vaughan Hovey, head of the First Church of Wicca in Duxbury, knows all about cold shoulders, hard stares, and verbal assaults.

Usually, Wiccans, witches, and other pagans worship in small, closeted groups. Hovey's church is one of a handful of such congregations across the United States that offer public sessions.

Opening the doors to what many Christians consider heretical and occult practice also has led to not-so-subtle accusations.

Raised Jewish, Hovey, 41, said the intolerance she experienced as a Jew has helped build a thick skin against prejudice. She says she feels a similar intolerance as a practicing witch in a new religion, which she joined when she was 11. Click here for the full story

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Pagans Show Their Pride Under 'Wide Umbrella'

Lisa Butler was brought up in a Christian family, but was agnostic until “I got to a point in life where I realized there was definitely something bigger than me.”

So Butler went searching for that something.

She researched various religious beliefs, read a great deal on religious thought, and attended a variety of services.

Then she came upon “some information on witchcraft, and it spoke to my heart.”

Butler organized the second annual Pagan Pride Day 2008 on Sunday at the former Ted Williams Camp in Lakeville, Mass., which drew a couple hundred participants despite driving rain throughout the morning. Click here for the full story

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Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Hildegard of Bingen

Color of the day: Yellow
Incense of the day: Lavender

Hildegard of Bingen was an extraordinary woman of the twelfth century. She was a nun in Germany, a visionary, mystic, composer, poet, healer, and an herbalist. She was well-traveled and highly regarded by those in power during her time. Consider her words and meditate on them.

I, the fiery life of divine wisdom, I ignite the beauty of the plains.
I sparkle the waters, I burn in the Sun, and the Moon, and the stars.
I am the breeze that nurtures all things green.
I encourage blossoms to flourish with ripening fruits.
I am led by the spirit to feed the purest stream.
I am the rain coming from the dew that causes the grasses to laugh with the joy of life.

By: Ellen Dugan

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Ten Ways to Celebrate Mabon

Mabon is the time of the autumn equinox, and the harvest is winding down. The fields are nearly bare, because the crops have been stored for the coming winter. Mabon is a time when we take a few moments to honor the changing seasons, and celebrate the second harvest. On or around September 21, for many Pagan and Wiccan traditions it is a time of giving thanks for the things we have, whether it is abundant crops or other blessings. It is also a time of balance and reflection, following the theme of equal hours light and dark. Here are some ways you and your family can celebrate this day of bounty and abundance. Click here for the full story

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Halloween Is Harmless Holiday; Lighten Up On Vacation

Q: I do not like the implications of Halloween, but my husband does, so we allow the kids to dress up as fun/positive characters. Our son is now 7 and is asking to go to the local haunted house. My husband thinks this is OK, but I would like to keep the negative aspects of Halloween out of the picture as much as possible. What say you?

A: Halloween may have its roots in ancient pagan rituals, but then so does the Christmas tree and the Maypole. Speaking as an evangelical Christian, I think the brouhaha over Halloween is much ado about nothing, as is the brouhaha over the Harry Potter books. I do believe there's evil afoot in the world, but the notion that Halloween somehow lures children to the Dark Side is more than a tad over the top. Click here for the full story

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Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Misty Protection Charm

Color of the day: Black
Incense of the day: Cedar

Celtic myths and folktales are full of stories about the power of mist. Those who are about to undergo an otherworld encounter often find themselves in an open landscape, suddenly surrounded by a magical mist. When the mist parts, they are in an unknown land, and frequently have interactions with gods or the spirits of the Sidhe (or fairy folk). Interestingly, the Gaelic word for mist, ceò, also means “amazement.” If you find yourself in a misty landscape, use this charm to encourage and intensify a positive spiritual experience with the spirits who dwell in the mist:

Spirits of mist, spirits of dew,
I open my heart
And soul to you.
Gods of mist, gods of rain,
I walk along
This path again.
Those who dwell
Within this place
I honor you
And ask for peace.

Gods and spirits of the mist,
May this encounter
Be truly blessed.

By: Sharynne NicMhacha

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New Near Death Experience Study

For a number of years, Dr Sam Parnia and Dr Peter Fenwick have been working on an experiment to test for awareness after the point of death. Their investigation has now been expanded into a larger study called AWARE (AWAreness during REsuscitation), to be launched by the Human Consciousness Project of the University of Southampton – "an international collaboration of scientists and physicians who have joined forces to study the human brain, consciousness and clinical death.":

A number of recent scientific studies carried out by independent researchers have demonstrated that 10-20 per cent of people who go through cardiac arrest and clinical death report lucid, well structured thought processes, reasoning, memories and sometimes detailed recall of events during their encounter with death.

During the AWARE study, doctors will use sophisticated technology to study the brain and consciousness during cardiac arrest. At the same time, they will test the validity of out of body experiences and claims of being able to ‘see’ and ‘hear’ during cardiac arrest.

Apart from anecdotal stories and some testing back in the 1970s (perhaps most notably, Charles Tart's experiments with 'Miss Z', as well as tests on Robert Monroe), there has been little solid scientific examination of claims of veridical perception during OBEs and NDEs. Should be interesting to see how it all goes.

By Greg

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Three Simple Love Charms

Herbal, Onion and Candle Spells for Love

Most people either want to bring love into their lives or improve the relationship that they already have. These simple love spells will help you to do just that.

These three spells all require little time and effort. They are quick to perform yet powerful.

Herbal Love Spell

The first is an herbal love spell. Based on the target, you choose an herb that represents their zodiac sign.

Chicory for Pisces
Rosemary for Aries
Spearmint for Taurus
Anise for Gemini
Tarragon for Cancer
Peppermint for Leo
Catnip for Virgo
Cayenne for Libra
Aloe for Scorpio
Sage for Sagittarius
Comfrey for Capricorn
Chilies for Aquarius

Take the herb that corresponds to the one you love, add the petals of a white rose (symbol for love) place it in a cloth bag and keep it under your pillow. Every night before you go to bed say: "Even in my time of sleep, my true love I vow to keep". When you feel that the one you desire has been brought closer to you, burn the herbs and rose. While they burn think of the flames of passion.

Onion Spell for Love

This second love spell involves an onion, a new pot and dirt. You have to use dirt from the ground, not potting soil for this one. Simply write the name of the one you desire on the bottom of an onion bulb, plant it in a new pot with the dirt. Place the pot on a windowsill, one facing the direction in which your intended one lives works best. Repeat the name of the one you desire over it every morning and every night until it begins to bloom. After it begins to bloom say the following over it every day for a week: "As it's roots grow, As it's leaves grow, as it's flowers grow, so does (insert name) love grow. You should notice a difference within a full moon cycle.

Candle Love Spell

This last one is a quick candle spell for attracting love and passion into your life. This is also useful for a relationship that seems to need a boost in the romance department. Get a red candle that is only red on the outside but the wax is white on the inside (most inexpensive candles are only colored on the outside) Place it in a dish. Take the petals of one red and one white rose and place them in the dish, surrounding the candle. Burn the candle for 10 minutes a night, starting the night of the full moon, if you can wait that long. As the candle burns, Chant: "As our love glows in this candlelight, We grow closer on this night" Do this every night for 10 straight nights.It will have worked by then.

By Alexandra Romanov

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Kern County Pagan Pride Festival

Sunday, September 21st at Stramler Park in Bakersfield. Come join us to celebrate the Harvest! Admission to the festival is open to the public, and free with a donation of a non-perishable food item for a local food bank.

The day’s activities will include live music and dance performances, workshops, a ritual to celebrate the Harvest, craft vendors, psychic readers, healers and more. Children’s activities will include making pinwheels as part of the “Pinwheels for Peace” project. Click here for the full story

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Monday, September 15, 2008

Untangling Deception Spell

Color of the day: Lavender
Incense of the day: Narcissus

Today is mystery writer Agatha Christie’s birthday (1890–1976). The Full Moon is a perfect time to seek clarity and untangle deception, either from others or from ourselves. Gather together a clear glass bowl or a silver metal bowl and ten yards or more of yarn in the color of your choice. Under the Full Moon, preferably outdoors, cast a circle and create sacred space in your preferred manner. Tangle—but don’t knot—the yarn, while chanting, “In my life I perceive deception, tangled up and clouding perception.” When the yarn is tangled but not knotted, place it in the bowl. With a deep breath, hold the bowl up to the Full Moon and ask, “O Mother Goddess, bright one. Illuminate my perception and bring me clarity.” When you feel she’s filled your bowl with her clear wisdom, lower it. Slowly remove the yarn by pulling one end and ensuring that it is removed as a single strand. Open your heart and mind to hear the wisdom that will come as you unwind the yarn. Thank the Moon goddess and close your circle as you are accustomed. Place the yarn on your altar for one Moon cycle and then burn it or bury it.

By: Gail Wood

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Who Are The British Creationists?

At first glance the Genesis Expo museum, in the naval town of Portsmouth, looks like any other repository of natural history exhibits: fossils of dinosaurs and unusual rock formations.

But focus on the narrative of the information panels alongside them, and you start to realise this is a museum with a difference - one dedicated to the theory of creationism.

The revelation that US vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin says creationism should be taught in schools, alongside that of evolutionary theory, has raised few eyebrows in the US. An estimated 47% of Americans reject outright Charles Darwin's theory of evolution, accepting instead the Bible's account of the creation of the universe - as laid out in the first chapter of Genesis.

But in Britain, where a portrait of Darwin appears on the back of the £10 note, his theory of life evolving from primitive to complex structures by means of natural selection appears to be unchallenged orthodoxy.

Not so, say those on both sides of the creationist divide - a point amply proved by the existence of the Genesis Expo museum, to date Britain's only creationist museum. Click here for the full story

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MabonThe Pagan Thanksgiving

It's Mabon time-the time of the autumnal equinox-a time when light and dark hang in perfect balance. In the pagan and Wiccan traditions, Mabon is a time of thanksgiving, when Wiccans and pagans come together to celebrate the second harvest.

Wiccan and pagan tradition boast three harvest festivals: the first is called Lammas which takes place in August; Mabon which takes place on the autumnal equinox, and Samhain (pronounced sow when) which is celebrated on October 31, 2008. Click here for the full story

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Technopaganism, Where the New Meets the Old

While I was at Pagan Unity Days in Charleston, SC, a few folks who attended my presentation asked me to provide a transcript of everything we talked about, so they would have some of the online sources we discussed. For those of you who were there (and those who weren't!), here's a rough transcript of my session on Technopaganism - Using New Technology to Study Old Religions. Links are included within the text.

While we're on the topic, though, it's a good time to bring this up. Although inherently Pagan paths are typically nature-based religions, many of us find we can blend our spirituality with modern technology. It's a way of using both science and religion together, walking with one foot in both worlds, rather than choosing one to the exclusion of the other. So here's the question -- how many of you have found a way to blend science or technology with your spiritual beliefs? Ever used a cell phone in a communication spell? Ever smash a floppy disk to bits with a sledgehammer as part of a banishing ritual? Chime in, down in the comments section, and share your ideas!

By Patti Wigington

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Sunday, September 14, 2008

Spell for Wisdom from the Moon

Color of the day: Orange
Incense of the day: Juniper

Did you know that Full Moons last three days? All the documented effects of the Full Moon (from changes in the crime rate to changes in fish behavior) last from the day before Full until the day after Full. So today you can use Full Moon energy even though tomorrow is when the Moon is Full. Sit in a circle of white candles and light them in clockwise sequence. Hold up a mirror so that it catches candlelight and your face. If you are outdoors, catch moonlight in the mirror as well as (or instead of) candlelight. Feel moonlight rushing into the mirror, into your face. Ask the goddess to tell you your path for the next month. Receive her wisdom through the Moon. Meditate on what you receive. When ready, thank the goddess and let the candles burn down on their own.

By: Deborah Lipp

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Mabon: The Gods of the Vine

Fall is lurking just beyond the trees, and as the first of the leaves begin to change colors, it's a good time to consider the grape harvest, which is so intricately tied to the shifting of the seasons. This is the season to celebrate the making (and of course, consumption) of wine and other things grape-related. Wander outdoors somewhere this time of year, and you may even be fortunate enough to stumble upon some wild grapes.

This is the season to celebrate Dionysus and his counterpart Bacchus, and all the celebration that comes along with them. It's the season in which the Green Man makes his appearance, and shows in the forests in his many aspects as Herne the Hunter, Cernunnos, or even Puck of the wild woods. Take a moment to honor these gods of vegetation, and celebrate the harvest of grapes as Mabon approaches: Gods of the Vine.

By Patti Wigington

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Why It’s Dangerous To Be A Witch In A Recession

Why did people murder suspected witches in renaissance Europe? And why do they still do so today in sub-Saharan Africa? As someone whose main source of information about witch trials is Monty Python and the Holy Grail, I was fascinated to learn that witch-burning has its own grim economics.

Clearly, some of the fervour for murdering women – typically elderly widows – had cultural and religious origins. In the early medieval period, the Catholic Church dismissed the idea that witches had supernatural powers, and some Church documents argued that it was heresy to believe in witchcraft. Without Church support, it’s easy to see why witch trials were not popular. Click here for the full story

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Saturday, September 13, 2008

The Sweet Things in Life Spell

Color of the day: Gray
Incense of the day: Ivy

Today is Roald Dahl’s birthday, author of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and many other children’s books. Sit down and get comfortable in your favorite chair or couch in your home. Cuddle up in a warm comforter or blanket; surround yourself with happy things. Have a warm mug of hot chocolate and a plate of chocolate cookies in your lap. Close your eyes and think of all the sweet things in your life and send out wishes for your life to be filled with even more sweetness. Focus this warm, happy feeling and direct it into the mug of chocolate and the cookies. Slowly and deliberately, sip and savor the drink and eat the cookies.

From the spirits
I ask this favor,
My sweet life
I will savor.
Bring me sweetness
And delight
As I eat chocolate
Dark and light!
As within, so without,
So I will without doubt.

Be happy, and as you drink and eat, feel the energy infuse throughout your body and your life.

By: Gail Wood

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Who Is Allah?

Europeans love to mock the salience of religion in American society. But they won’t be laughing for very long. It is a well-documented fact that the de-Christianization of Europe in the name of “tolerance” is rapidly driving the spiritually shiftless continent into the arms of Islam. And now, amidst the postmodern theological confusion that defines contemporary Europe, even Catholic clergy are jumping on the Islamomania bandwagon.

The latest post-Christian theological spectacle comes to us from the Netherlands (of Ayaan Hirsi Ali fame), where the Roman Catholic Bishop of Breda, Tiny Muskens, says he wants Christians to start calling God “Allah” because he believes such a gesture would promote “rapprochement between Christianity and Islam”. Appearing on Dutch television, the 71-year-old cleric said: “Allah is a very beautiful word for God. Shouldn’t we all say that from now on we will name God Allah? [...] What does God care what we call him?” Click here for the full story

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A circle of thanks

As harvest season comes to a close, Pagans observe Mabon, a celebration of the richness of their lives, and begin the six-week spiritual preparation for the Celtic New Year, which begins Nov. 1.

Priestess Byron Ballard leads the rite at 7 p.m. Sept. 20 at Mystic Journeys, 333 Merrimon Ave.

Mabon is celebrated at the autumnal equinox, and Ballard and Jill Yarnall have added a local twist to the celebration. Click here for the full story

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Palin's Anti-Pagan Coreligionists

Here I was thinking to myself that the chances of a modern Pagan angle to the Republican VP pick of Alaska's Sarah Palin would be truly minimal. Sure, you had her support of aerial wolf hunting (a cruel method that violates the ethic of "fair chase"), and her drill-happy attitudes towards ANWR, but nothing explicitly anti-Pagan had emerged. But a number of bloggers, most notably Bruce Wilson at Talk2Action, have been digging into Palin's religious background and found some disturbingly anti-Pagan connections. Click here for the full story

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Delay sought on hearing over nativity display

The group suing over the installation of a nativity scene at Green Bay City Hall last Christmas wants to delay Monday's hearing on the issue.

Richard Bolton, the lawyer representing the Madison-based Freedom From Religion Foundation and 14 Green Bay residents who support the effort, filed a motion this week seeking a delay. Click here for the full story

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Friday, September 12, 2008

Metal Elemental Spell

Color of the day: Rose
Incense of the day: Vanilla

Chinese magical tradition recognizes five elements: earth, metal, wood, fire, and water. Metal relates to the colors gold and silver, the west, meticulous behavior, sense of smell, and spicy flavors or fragrances. Working with metal improves your relation with the elemental spirits of machinery. To commune with metal elementals, you’ll need a fan and a stick of spicy incense such as cinnamon, clove, or sandalwood. You can work this in your car, near your computer, or near other important equipment, etc. Light the incense and waft the smoke around. Then say:

Little bright spirits,
Meticulous and steady,
Masters of metal,
Come hear my praises.
Without you,
Nothing would work.
You are essential.
You are everywhere.
Gears, springs,
Bearings, motherboards,
For this I give thanks.

Whenever you need to deal with machines, remember to treat them nicely; the metal elementals will remember you fondly and help everything go well.

By: Elizabeth Barrette

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Pagan Pride Day set for Saturday

Seven years ago, Dru Ann Welch put on a Wiccan pentacle -- a symbol of her newfound Pagan faith. Click here for the full story

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Wiccan Traditions: NeoPagan Nature-based Religion Is also Called Craft of the Wise

The major branches of Wicca are Gardnerian, Alexandrian, Dianic, Celtic (Church of Wicca), Georgian, Discordianism or Erisian and Wiccan Shamanism.

General statements about Wiccan traditions don’t always apply to all because covens or solitaries might practice differently within their chosen ones. All follow the Wiccan Rede, cause none harm.

Gardnerian

Gerald B. Gardner is the founder of this branch of Wicca in which the High Priestess rules the coven and the principles of love and trust are most important. Gardnerians follow its original Grimoire, a book describing rituals and laws, but are free to improvise as long as the original is adhered to. Every coven is autonomous.

Reincarnation and the rede are basic tenants of the tradition. Ideally, covens are composed of female and male pairs for balance.

Controversy surrounds Gardnerianism, questioning sources of rituals and the published writings available to the public. Gardner presented these writings as if they were his own from the New Forest tradition. It’s evident that resources the coven may have had when he was initiated, Gardner made many additions.

Alexandrian

Although similar to the Gardnerian tradition, Alexandrian, founded by Alex and Maxine Sanders, is more liberal and eclectic. Some of the former’s strict rules have been made optional.

Both traditions have initiations, 3 degrees and the primary authority being the High Priestess. The two are considered British Traditional Wicca (BTW) One of the major differences is that Alexandrians attribute the athame, black handled knife, to air and wand to fire; Gardnerians, athame to fire and wand to air.

Most of the rituals are based on ceremonial magick. It’s a polarized tradition with the female/male polarity being emphasized. The ritual cycle deals primarily with the divisions of the year between the Holly King and the Oak King, a Druid tradition. Some rituals have the dying and resurrected God theme.

Dianic

This has two branches. One, founded by Morgan McFarland and Mark Roberts, gives predominance to the Goddess, but honors the Horned God as her Consort. Covens are mixed, including both women and men. The other branch, sometimes referred to as Feminist Witchcraft, focuses totally on the Goddess and consists of female only covens. These are loosely structured and use creative experimental rituals. For the most part, these covens are feminist ones.

Celtic (Church of Wicca)

The Church of Wicca or Baptist Wicca was founded by Gavin and Yvonne Frost. This Celtic branch recently began to include a Goddess in their structure of deities. It had been very patriarchal as Wiccan traditions go.

Celtic appears to be a mixture of high magic, eclectic Wicca and a little Druidism. The Frosts have a fee-based course on the Internet for people to take which advertised in tabloids.

Georgian

This eclectic branch of Wicca was founded by George Patterson. The primary tenet is that what works should be used; what doesn’t, discard.

Discordianism or Erisian

This is a “Non- Prophet Irreligious Disorganization” founded by Greg Hill. It claims that the Erisian revelation isn’t a complicated put-on disguised as a new religion. It’s a new religion disguised as such. The primary theme is that chaos is as important as order.

Wiccan Shamanism

This branch, founded by Selena Fox, is a blend of cross-cultural Shamanism, Wicca and transpersonal psychology, drawing on established practices and new ones. The focus is on inter-faith and multi-cultures.

-Jill Stefko

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Thursday, September 11, 2008

Remembrance Ritual

Color of the day: White
Incense of the day: Apricot

Today marks the seventh anniversary of the terrorist attacks on the United States, leaving more than three thousand people dead and thousands more forever changed. While the attacks struck terror into our hearts, it also brought us together as a country and a world as thousands poured time, efforts, and healing thoughts into New York, Pennsylvania, and Washington. Today should be a day of remembrance for the tragedies, heroics, and miracles of 9/11. On your altar or other safe place, light a pair of white candles. Then sit quietly, watching them burn, as you contemplate the positive changes brought about by such great tragedy. Visualize and focus on the world becoming a better place of tolerance for one another.

By: Laurel Reufner

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These Hills Have History

On a farm between Cappawhite and Doon, Tom Coffey discovered on eof the most sacred sites in Ireland. He tells Aine Fitzgerald what makes Carnahalla Heritage Centre so unique.

IN the late 1990's while driving stakes on land he inherited from his uncles, the Kilbrides, Tom Coffey heard a most uncommon resonating sound. It puzzled him. He investigated further.

Using history books and talking with archaeologists, he found that in all likelihood these unusual resonating sounds were from an old form of loud speaker built for the ceremonies and inaugurations. They were created by passageways underneath the earth.

The quiet, almost haunting archaeological landscape exhibits evidence of settlement stretching back possibly from 6000 years to more modern history.

"First of all," Tom explains, "if you walk through the site, the entire landscape is alive – the hill twists right around, there are scared groves or shrines. In early times the land was usually represented by a Goddess - in this case Tea whose shape was clear to see in the rise of the hills - you have that all here- the central hill is Sheela na Gig shaped". Click here for the full story

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Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Turquoise Wealth Charm

Color of the day: Topaz
Incense of the day: Bay laurel

Many cultures have valued turquoise for its beauty and its properties of protection and attracting wealth. It can be used in several ways to draw prosperity into your life. Perform this rite a few days after the New Moon, when the crescent is visible in the sky. Avoid looking at the Moon until the proper time. Hold a piece of turquoise in your hand. Visualize your magical need—money—manifesting in your life. Move outside and gaze upon the Moon. Then directly shift your gaze to the turquoise. With that action, the spell has begun. Carry the stone with you until the money arrives.

By: Winter Wren

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City Closes The Book On Karkos Case

The showdown between the city and JoAn Karkos ended Friday even though Karkos failed to return a library book she has deemed obscene.

Karkos will not be ordered to jail for violating a judge's orders. The city will not continue trying to wrest from her a copy of "It's Perfectly Normal: Changing Bodies, Growing Up, Sex and Sexual Health."

There will be no national debate drawn to Lewiston based on the arrest of a 64-year-old grandmother.

City leaders believe they made the right choice by choosing to drop the matter. Karkos, they say, still has to pay a $100 fine and cannot return to the library until she does so. Click here for the full story

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Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Moving On Spell

Color of the day: Maroon
Incense of the day: Cinnamon

Gather together things that represented you in the past. These could be old photos, favorite outdated clothes, etc. In an old trunk, place the items in one by one. Thank them for being part of you when needed, thank the person in the photo for being strong for the time. But now it is time for new beginnings.
Close the trunk and say,

For the past is behind me
And the new way
In front of me.

Time to evolve,
Time to move on.
I thank the person I was
And I welcome the person
I am yet to be.

Store the trunk, but do not open it for at least one year. Then open it and have a remembrance evening, going through your old things. At this point you may wish to discard some, or add other things to the trunk. Remember that this trunk represents you, and respect it as you respect yourself.

By: Nancy Bennett

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Why The Fascination With The End Of The World?

The world will end. That much is a certainty. But it may not be soon. And in all probability it will not come to a shuddering, fiery, boiling, cataclysmic end on Wednesday this week.

That is when the Large Hadron Collider on the Swiss/French border has its first full beam. The collider is a giant particle accelerator which, by smashing one particle into another, will tell us amazing things about the birth of the universe, scientists hope.

But there are a small but significant group of naysayers who worry that the LHC is not 100% safe. Opponents say it is possible the collider could produce micro black holes and dangerous "strangelets", and that catastrophic effects from these cannot be ruled out.

In this worst case scenario the earth could very well have had its chips.

However, the consensus of physicists is that the collider is perfectly harmless. Micro black holes would vanish almost instantaneously.

But when you see a headline in a newspaper that says "Are we all going to die next Wednesday?", one can't help but wonder at our fascination with the idea of the end of the world. Click here for the full story

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Monday, September 08, 2008

Cider and Spice Protection Spell

Color of the day: Ivory
Incense of the day: Clary sage

In a small saucepan combine one cup of cider, one stick of cinnamon, and nine whole cloves. Heat until the mixture is warm and fragrant. Remove from the heat, let cool slightly, and stir clockwise while saying: “Cider strengthen me, cinnamon protect me, clove cleanse me.” Pour the potion into an earthenware bowl. After dark, pour the mixture around the garden or home. Speak this charm:

I have brewed this potion With my hand,
To protect my home
And my land.
No dark spirits
Shall dwell in this place,
For I have blessed
Every crevice and space.
Any friend who comes,
Night or day,
Shall be welcomed
To sit and stay.
But no foe
Shall darken my door,
Today, tomorrow,
Or forever more.

When you’ve finished, press the cinnamon stick and cloves into the earth.

By: James Kambos

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Melting Swiss Glacier Yields Neolithic Trove, Climate Secrets

Some 5,000 years ago, on a day with weather much like today's, a prehistoric person tread high up in what is now the Swiss Alps, wearing goat leather pants, leather shoes and armed with a bow and arrows.

The unremarkable journey through the Schnidejoch pass, a lofty trail 2,756 metres (9,000 feet) above sea level, has been a boon to scientists. But it would never have emerged if climate change were not melting the nearby glacier.

So far, 300 objects dating as far back as the Neolithic or New Stone Age -- about 4,000 BC in Europe -- to the later Bronze and Iron Ages and the Medieval era have been found in the site's former icefields. Click here for the full story

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Sunday, September 07, 2008

Altar of Light

Color of the day: Amber
Incense of the day: Eucalyptus

The Sun is our ultimate source of light, and nothing captures this light quite as beautifully as crystals. To create an altar of sunlight, set up your items outside or near a sunny window. Use a table or even a box or bookshelf and arrange various crystals and stones that sparkle. Sit and meditate while gazing on the shimmering stones. For an evening altar, use candlelight. Arrange various candles so their light shines on crystals and makes them glow. Find candle holders carved from crystals or use colored glass as well. Meditate on the light and consider how we take light for granted and the power that the element of Fire has in our lives. Remember that light contains all colors and harness this ultimate healing light for your individual needs.

By: Ember

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Native Speaker Last Of Her Kind

At daybreak, Neda Wesley stood at the edge of the grave.

She watched as her friend's remains vanished under a blanket of dirt. Like countless other funerals, Wesley attended as a neighbor and community member. But the 70-year-old, fluent speaker of Sahaptin served another purpose as well.

They call her an echo.

When the medicine people speak, Wesley translates their words into Sahaptin so they can be passed on to the Creator. Wesley is glad she can send friends into the next world in the way they would want.

Wesley is the reservation's last echo.

So who will speak for her? Click here for the full story

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Saturday, September 06, 2008

A Day for Plaid

Color of the day: Blue
Incense of the day: Sage

September always puts me in a “plaid” mood. Perhaps it is because, in all my elementary school years, I always wore plaid on the first day of school. The pattern of plaid also gives me comfort—the weave reminds me of interconnectedness. Why not celebrate with a picnic, indoors or outdoors, on a plaid blanket? Wear plaid. Lie on a plaid couch to read a book (maybe it has a plaid cover). Celebrate your plaid curtains. Do a bit of research and see if you have a clan tartan in your lineage—and learn the meaning behind it. Celebrate the pattern of the fabric as a symbol of the patterns in your life.

By: Cerridwen Iris Shea

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Psychic’s Donation Not Accepted

Last year, when Alexandra Chauran sought to teach her students at the Kent Phoenix Academy about the benefits of composting, she turned to the King County Solid Waste Division for help. Chauran ended up using the agency's curriculum to help her students start a vegetable garden and donate the fruit—or in this case veggies—of their labors to a local food bank.

After that experience, Chauran says, she wanted to get involved with KCSWD's Waste Free Holiday program, which solicits small businesses to donate their services at a reduced rate to be distributed as gifts during the holidays, in the hope that grandmothers and other gift-givers will replace ugly sweaters with experiences that generate less trash. Chauran, who left the Kent School District after last year, sought to donate her skills as a tarot-card reader, a crystal-ball diviner, and a tea-leaf reader to the program. She was turned down.

"Thank you for your application," Megan Sety of the division's Recycling and Environmental Services department wrote to Chauran on Aug. 11. "However, we are not able to include offers of this type because of their controversial nature." Click here for the full story

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Friday, September 05, 2008

Freya's Love Spell

Color of the day: Pink
Incense of the day: Thyme

Tonight you can combine the energies of the waxing Moon phase and the loving energies of a Friday (which is Freya’s day and connected to Venus) in your spell work. This is the perfect opportunity to work a spell that draws romance and attraction into your life. It also boosts your own confidence as well. To begin, light a pink candle and repeat the charm:

Rosy pink candle
Burning warm and bright,
Lend your magic to mine
On Freya’s night.
May I walk in beauty
Each and every day,
Bring romance into my life
In the best possible way.

By: Ellen Dugan

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Incense Shown To Relieve Anxiety In Mice

From the Holy Land comes a fragrant revelation as modern as it is ancient: Frankincense, burned for millennia to sweeten and purify the air, does not just smell good. It does not just, arguably, drive off demons or make a nice gift from a Wise Man. It may very well be good for you.

Pharmacologists in Israel have found that frankincense, a whitish resin tapped from the veins of a shrubby tree, relieves anxiety and depression, at least in mice.

In an article in the Journal of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology, researchers from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and elsewhere report that the active ingredient in frankincense lights up brain receptors that play a role in the perception of warmth on the skin and might help regulate emotion.

“I’m not surprised,” Stacy Rapp and Cat Cabral said in unison from behind the cluttered apothecary counter at Enchantments, an occult supply shop in New York’s East Village, where they grind the pebbly chunks of frankincense to make incense with names like Fiery Wall of Protection. Click here for the full story

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Thursday, September 04, 2008

Lavender Clearing Spell

Color of the day: Turquoise
Incense of the day: Nutmeg

This is a good time of year to go through your house, cleaning closets and ridding yourself of possessions that have outgrown their usefulness. Bag all those items that can be recycled or given away. Now, take several sprigs of lavender for purification and place them in a bowl in the center of your altar. Light two white candles. Run your fingers through the herb and say: “Lavender, lavender, bring us contentment.” Repeat this until you feel your energy transfer to the herb. Pour one cup of boiling water over the enchanted sprigs, then cover the bowl as the herb steeps. When it has cooled, strain it and sprinkle drops of the infusion over those areas you’ve cleaned out. Visualize your life this autumn as a peaceful, happy time. Sprinkle the infusion over your discarded items. Visualize your possessions bringing happiness and use to their new owners.

By: Lily Gardner

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Thor He's A Jolly Tough Fellow As He Practises Stav

Neil Lewis from Walwa in far northeastern Victoria is a smallish man with long grey hair and mischievous eyes, and is surrounded by an aura of calm and serenity.

Just don't mess with him.

Beneath that calm pixie exterior is a 61-year-old who believes in the Norse gods, reads his runes every morning and can cleave an enemy in two in the blink of an eye. Click here for the full story

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Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Courage to Seek Help Spell

Color of the day: Brown
Incense of the day: Honeysuckle

We all suffer from feeling sad, and while we can boost ourselves through short down-periods, persistent depression needs medical treatment and emotional support. When you’re so sad you know you’re going to need help, give yourself the boost you need to ask. Take a bath scented with mints, and have a cinnamon incense or cinnamon-scented candle burning while you take the bath. Inhale it, and allow yourself to feel its energizing quality. After you’ve gotten out and dried off, don some red clothing; a red shirt will do just fine. It’s important you be comfortable and feel you look good. Add a fresh energizing cologne. Look at yourself in the mirror, and see yourself as healthy, and a normal person reaching out with a normal need. Then pick up the phone and call a friend or a medical facility and ask for help.

By: Diana Rajchel

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Four Hedgesville Students Sent Home For Wearing Eyeliner

Four Hedgesville (W.V.) High School students were sent home Thursday for allegedly violating the dress code. It's something that's not sitting well with their parents, who've called on district administrators to investigate.

Derek Rose says he likes to wear make-up; in fact, he wore eyeliner to school nearly every day last year.

"Lines beside my eyes, red on top and black on the bottom or all red or whatever,” he says.

But when school started this week, Derek was immediately told his eyeliner was out of line. Click here for the full story

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Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Harvest Mare Spell

*Regarding the post below this one; we witches do not harm animals for our rituals or spells. It is innately against our nature to do so. Here is a typical spell that we do that harms no beast.

Color of the day: Gray
Incense of the day: Ylang-ylang

The harvest was a time of many ancient folk customs in Wales. These were often connected with the Gwrach (“Hag”) or the Caseg Fedi (“Harvest Mare”), an ornament made from the last tuft of grain to be harvested. Reaping hooks were skillfully cast toward the last sheaf, and whoever touched the sheaf cried out that they had gotten “Gwrach, gwrach, gwrach!” (A hag, a hag, a hag!), or else “Pen medi bach mi ces!” (I got a little harvest-mare!). Weave a small horse from straw and set it on your harvest altar. Make offerings of cakes, ale, and the first fruits of the harvest:

O spirit of the corn,
Hag of the harvest,
Divine harvest mare,
I honor you!
She who transforms
And nourishes,
Goddess of the Earth,
The fields, and the grain.
I welcome you,
And bid you farewell
As you cycle through the year And bless us again!

By: Sharynne NicMhacha

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Horses Cut In What Could Be Witchcraft Say Locals

Two horses in Herefordshire have been attacked in what members of the local Horsewatch group and the owner say could involve witchcraft.

The mane of a 10-year-old Welsh Cob was cut off and left at the scene in Upper Sapey, near Worcester, on 15 August, while a second horse suffered cuts near the mane, possibly sustained from scissors.

Police are examining a pair of scissors found near the scene. Click here for the full story

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Monday, September 01, 2008

Barbecue Magic

Color of the day: Silver
Incense of the day: Rosemary

First celebrated in 1882, Labor Day is a national tribute to the contributions of workers in the strength and prosperity of the United States. Most American workers have the day off today and are enjoying the day with friends and family. And this is a great day for barbecue magic. Before laying your coals, have everyone present write down all that they are thankful for about their work. For some it may take some thought, but just having a job can be a blessing. Encourage them to jot down ways that they might be more productive or happier in their work and any goals for future work they would like to do. Crunch up these papers and lay them beneath the coals. Light the papers first with everyone watching. As they burn, visualize those thanks and wishes transforming and being released to the universe.

By: Kristin Madden

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Women Abandoning Church As Buffy Turns Them On To Witchcraft

Christian churches in England have lost at least 50,000 women from their congregations every year since 1989, says a sociologist.

Dr Kristin Aune, from the University of Derby, said many young women are put off going to church because they link it with traditional values.

Dr Aune added: 'In short, women are abandoning the church. Because of its focus on female empowerment, young women are attracted by Wicca, popularised by the TV series Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Click here for the rest of the story

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