Flowers for Ostara

 Happy Eostara! Eostara is one of my favorite Sabbats (hmmm I might say that for all of them) As many of you know I love flowers. Being that this is the Sabbat of spring time, the time of the maiden, who shows her face through the beautiful flowers, and hints of spring. I thought it appropriate to celebrate and give offerings of beautiful flowers to the Maiden Goddess. I spend time this past weekend down at the River. I was happy to go as it is the last time that we will be able to go with out the disruption from other people there to enjoy the cool waters. It was slightly crowded, but I was still able to perform my simple ritual.

I first gathered my traveling basket. My brand new Athame (as I cracked the other one) It isn't ready for use yet, but I wanted to cleanse and consecrate it in the flowing waters of the river. I then picked flowers from the garden, a small rose, prim rose, violets pansy, and columbine. These were for the Goddess of spring. I then brought milk and honey in a bottle I use for ritual, This was for the water spirits. I also packed some incense and tarot cards. I was able to set the flowers afloat with the milk and honey. Whispering my prayers as they floated down the river. The Goddess and Spirits seamed pleased. As the incense floated through the air we read the tarot and their messages were quite clear. 

Later in the week my conveners joined me for a simple, and laid back ritual. We crafted a beautiful mandala from flowers. It is currently still together and will be taken down and burned with more prayers, and words of thanks to the Goddess of spring for the life she has brought forth, and the bounty of the year. The ashes will be saved and used for other rites.
 Have a Blessed Eostara!

The Ritual of the Bones

When I find a special bird or animal. I will bury it with crystals and other offerings. This is a sign of respect, and honor. I tell the animal's spirit that I will be putting it to rest, and will then be bringing it back up to re-purpose its remains. I have had no trouble with any animal spirit,  but if it doesn't feel right, don't dig it up. When I dig up the bones, instead of doing a peroxide rinse, I place my cauldron on the fire outside, I add sacred herbs, and enter a trance, I let the cauldron come to a light boil and add the bones. I add other offerings of thanks, and hum, sway, and chant. If you are going to use the bones for any ritual purpose you MUST thank the animal, and treat them with the utmost respect. I do not leave the bones in the cauldron too long, I remove the cauldron, let the water cool and retrieve the bones. I set them out with other fresh herbs and crystals to dry, till they are ready. The spirit has been released and honored. The bones ritually consecrated with herbs and water now they can become some of your most powerful and sacred tools. 

Pashmina Cone of Power

It is always easy to tell others what to do, and in the process neglect yourself. Today was not one of those days! For the past several months, as I have mentioned in my recent blogs I have found that it has been hard to be magical. These last few months were particularly rough as I had just come out of a wonderful magical period, but everything waxes and wanes now doesn't it?

I had set my intent this week to start doing my daily magical and meditation practices. I have been successful so far, but of course it is only Tuesday. Yesterday I was able to do a guided meditation, and some spiritual work in the garden, today I planted some more seeds, and spent time in the ritual room. The wonderful thing about today is it was not any ritual that I had planned, or been taught. It was a free flowing ritual, set before my still standing Samhain altar of bones, wings, and other dead things. As I came into the ritual room I felt that overwhelming feeling of blockage. I lit some sage and smudged, but didn't feel it was good enough. I grabbed a very large piece of black tourmaline known to release blockages, and sat down. 

In the usually way I grounded and swayed with the background music I put on to drown out any unwanted noises. I held the tourmaline to my stomach, which has been feeling particularly uneasy for the past few days. I am sure that I ate some gluten along the way and that was the main problem. There is nothing like wanting to do ritual, but your body just wants the opposite. Things still felt a little odd to me, and I felt like there needed to be something more. 

Several months ago, there was a blog or two on Pagan women veiling, this created a fuss in many circles, some were for it and others were against it. Many veil types were compared to the Islamic style, and the modesty that came with it. Some were against it as nudity is a form of freedom to them. I will admit that I was one of the ones against it. As I further my studies of Avalon, I have had many meditations about the Priestesses of Avalon, and many times they are veiled, not in a form of restriction, but in a beautiful way. I have been feeling the need and want to veil during ritual, and I have rejected it over and over again. HOW COULD I VEIL? IT IS ABSURD!!! It makes no sense to me, I have in the past tried to support the veiling movement, though against it internally at the time, I tried comparing it to a hooded robe, but veiling is NOT a hooded robe now is it? Today though something interesting and magical happened. 

As I sat there rhythmically breathing and holding the black tourmaline, I thought of veiling. To my right was a Pashmina scarf that was just lying there, and another more square scarf as well. I took a moment and laid out the square scarf, I then sat in the center clutching my tourmaline. I took the Pashmina scarf and draped it over my head. It didn't feel strange or restricting at all. I took a moment and tried a few different ways. At last I decided to just drape it slightly over my head and face the way you would see a image of the Catholic Mary. The sides of the scarf folded in towards my face, and it created a darkness, but also it was containing my energy. I took a moment to invoke Reiki, and then pulled the scarf to the side, and laid down, it was now covering my body. I used the Reiki and Tourmaline to balance my body and spirit, with great care taken to focus on the solar plexus (upset stomach) and the 3rd eye, where I was really feeling the block. About 20 minutes went by. (well I don't know for sure as I don't keep an eye on the time in ritual, so I am guessing here) I felt wonderful and ready for a meditation. I sat back up and readjusted the scarf around my head, again slightly covering my head and face and let it flow down my sides, there was a small slit in the center, and the sides of the scarf hit the ground. It was much like a triangle. As I sat in that cone of Pashmina scarf I swayed into a light trance. I had THE best meditation I have had in over 6 months, and the way I feel now after is that of rejuvenation, and resurgence! 

I am astounded by the effects veiling had for me in this meditation/healing session. Being so against it for so long, and then finally succumbing to the urge has reminded me that the ways of magic will continue to out shine the ways of our society. There was nothing stifling about it, in fact I felt more at peace and free to be open and relaxed in my little Pashmina cone of power. The fine fabric contained my energy and created a vortex of swirling magical energy around me. This is something that I will be practicing in my personal practice more often, as well as trying to figure out a way to incorporate into my ceremonial magic rituals.