Category: Articles

Stress, Mess, and Thanksgiving Magick

astro-nov-24

by Silver RavenWolf

(Article originally published in The Llewellyn Journal.)

The mouthwatering aroma of home cooked food permeates the room. Decibels of conversation rise as the house begins to fill with guests. The game (there's always a game) blares from the television. Children, parents, extended family, grandparents, friends, and someone's significant other (there's a new one every year) squeeze around the table. Rushing, dashing, cheeks flushed, the orchestrator of the event moves swiftly from task to task. With a mind more tuned to super success than the best roller derby athlete in the country, he or she arranges everything from the décor, to the food, to…is there enough toilet paper in the bathroom?

Thanksgiving! America's ritual feast of gratitude can be one of the most delightful or stressful events of the autumn season, depending on your point of view. Whether you are a visitor, or a host/ess—why not add a little magick to your special holiday brew!

In early November I polled my Facebook friends with this question as one of my daily posts: What do you feel is the most stressful aspect of Thanksgiving? 319 people responded, and although there were singular, creative comments, the top three categories were:

  1. Cleaning the house or apartment (before and after the event).
  2. Being responsible for food preparation.
  3. Dealing with family personalities. This included comments about difficult individuals, having to hold one's tongue to keep from getting into an argument, complaints—and rightly so—of family members having to work and therefore cannot join in the family festivities, and enduring the heartbreak of family members who have passed beyond the veil (particularly the recently deceased).

Luckily, the universe is willing to give us a helpful, magickal hand this year. Thanksgiving week, the moon is in the fourth quarter, a time that many practitioners use for banishing negativity. Cleansing and reordering our space comes easily, particularly since the moon on Monday and Tuesday are in Virgo (the sign of detail and organization). Consider adding an herbal formula to your cleaning water or mixing and empowering holy water with the added benefit of dried herbs such as rosemary (for cleansing), basil (for encouraging compassion), and lavender (for removing stress). You can spray the holy water in various rooms after you have cleaned them. Perhaps a blend of essential oils would suit you better, adding them to some holiday potpourri in various areas of the home to set the tone for a stress-free environment.

Focusing on removing as much clutter as possible (all of it if you can), will encourage the positive flow of chi throughout the home. Pay particular attention to those areas that will be used by family and guests. Negative energy sticks in dark halls, corners, under furniture, jumbled piles of books, magazines, and papers, etc. The more clutter, the more risk for lagging pools of negative energy that contain unhappiness, anger, and fear. If circumstances have really been bad in the home the past few months, consider doing a personal, spiritual cleansing as well as a complete house banishing and blessing.

Worried about guests allowing their personal demons to flow into your living space as they make their grand entrance through the door? After your house cleansing, why not take the time to do a little protection magick—perhaps empowering specific items in the home to keep the energy balanced, or adding a protection spell that includes jewelry you will wear, or creating a gris-gris or conjuring bag you plan to keep in your pocket. Placing a living African Violet in the room that will contain the most amount of visitors can aid in heightening spirituality and protection energies. Be sure to talk to the plant you choose, asking for permission to enlist its aid in keeping your home safe. (Some of you who just read this said to yourselves, "Hmmm, I need to line up fifty of 'em right by the front door.")

Don't have the money to buy a special plant or magickal herbs? There are quite a few dried herbs or other natural items in your kitchen that will work equally well in a conjuring bag for protection—Dill, Clove, Curry, Garlic, Mint, Onion Skin, Parsley, Rice, Crushed Eggshell, Rosemary, and Sage, to name a few. A Braucherei (or Pennsylvania Dutch Pow-Wow) technique for protection includes hanging an open pair of scissors over the front door to cut the negativity as people enter the home. If you are worried about the danger of sharp scissors that may take it upon themselves to pounce on an unsuspecting relative, use kid-safe scissors. Concerned that someone might think you are stupid? Hide the open scissors in a decoration over the door, such as a wreath or cinnamon broom.

Monday and Tuesday are also great days for planning your menu and ensuring you have all the supplies you will need to cook the meal. With the Virgo moon, you may enjoy prudent shopping. Schedule your visit to the grocery store early in the morning to avoid customer mayhem. If you are traveling this year, put together whatever non-perishable items you plan to take with you ahead of time, particularly if you will be staying overnight. There is nothing worse than digging in your suitcase to discover you left your phone charger by the bed, or your contact lens solution in the bathroom. A small, sealed envelope that contains juniper berries and your favorite protective sigil can be slipped into the glove compartment of your car to ensure safe travel. Empower the gift you may be planning to give your hostess with love, harmony, and good fortune. Gifts with a touch of positive magick are truly blessings from the heart.

On Wednesday, the moon enters Libra and remains there through Friday. Libra will help to take the edge off of disharmony, encouraging fair and diplomatic behavior. It is also the sign of beauty and glamor. With the cleaning done and the junk moved out of the way, allow the energy of Libra to bring sparkle into your home. This would be a great time to add those special, decorative holiday touches that will make the celebration as visually pleasing as it will be delightful to the palate. Keep a close eye on your spending, perhaps choosing a more natural, elegant décor that includes a good dose of do-it-yourself creativity.

Thanksgiving occurs on a Thursday, falling under the benevolent gaze of Jupiter in compassionate Cancer. Although Jupiter is currently retrograde, he never loses his innate ability to bring good fortune and blessings. Overdoing it, however, is always a risk. The Sun in Sagittarius provides an overall veneer of laughter, spontaneity, and generosity—not bad energy for a holiday if you don't go overboard!

Worried about religious differences during the meal blessing? A friend of mine came up with a marvelous way of performing the blessing that encompasses all faiths. She simply says: "Only the good remains," and passes her hand three times over the food. This technique can also be done while you are cooking the meal, adding a bit of positive magick to the food. If you need the table blessing to be a little longer, you might like this one: "We are thankful for the bounty before us. We are grateful for our family and friends—those that are with us, and those who are absent. May peace and love surround us all…and…as always, only the good remains in our hearts and minds."

For those who are feeling the loss of a loved one who has gone beyond the veil, a special place could be set somewhere in the general gathering area. This place can remain empty, or if that is too depressing for the family, flowers might be placed by a picture to honor and remember the loved one. You may also wish to prepare a plate specifically for honoring deity, giving the food as an offering of gratitude. Consider writing a special, short ritual of giving that could be included in the day's events.

After the holiday festivities are over and your guests have departed, have your holy water ready, or cleansing incense at hand, and walk through your home or apartment performing a small banishing. You could also use a rattle or sweet bell, ringing it several times in every room to remove negativity that people invariably drag with them.

,p> This year there is a possibility of an unexpected visitor, and the desire, perhaps, to spend beyond your means in an effort to provide the best experience for friends and family. Emotions may peak at the last minute, when your worries battle to override your common sense. Take a breath, connect with Spirit, and relax. Remember that Thanksgiving is all about gratitude. Say aloud all the things you are grateful for, and as you do so, the stress will ebb away.

Remember: it's just day with a touch of magick.

And only the memories remain.

May they be good ones.

Article originally published in The Llewellyn Journal. Copyright Llewellyn Worldwide, 2013. All rights reserved.

"Life happens. Life in the flow."

We learn over time that nobody can solve our problems, but someone can guide you how to solve the problem. You may receive guidance through a teacher, a guru or even strangers that you run into every day. As we practice yoga we learn that the more we know, the less we truly know. Every day I am reminded how much I truly do not know; a very humbling experience.
Yoga teaches me to be present. To just live for being and enjoying life as it is right NOW. Not ten minutes from now, no five days ago, but right now. We are taught to get out of our heads, to release worries and fears of the past or the future and to only live for this very moment. Presence.

"Lead me from untruth to truth, lead me from darkness to light." ~ Buddha

Through yoga we are reminded that we do have a dark side as well as a light side. We are not to repress the dark side, but embrace that side of our Self. We are the yin and the yang. We ultimately cleanse the dark stuff we hold inside. We shine the light on this. We must make friends with dark side. Both positive and negative balance out the whole. Daily practice refines and improves our inner vision to see our Self more clearly. We no longer need to run from fears. Face them and say I'm not running from you anymore. So much is in our heads, so much dark is only in our heads, self-doubt judgment betrayal. Yoga grounds the body so that the light and dark sides of ourselves become clear. So much is truly untrue. But as we diligently practice we are able to find the middle ground and walk our centered balanced line in life. We gain balance in centered lightheartedness. We can have harmony in both light and dark.

"Yoga tells us that the world is actually a projection of our own thoughts and we can modify our inner world to manifest into our outer world. When our inside realm is at peace and in harmony, our outer world shines this projection back at us."
~ David, Jiva Mukti Yoga co-founder

Yoga is observation.

We can observe our world and see what part that is in us is begin reflected back to us. We can then see what part of us needs modification or adjustment in order to have our outer reality reflect back to us the peace, happiness and love we so greatly desire and deserve.

Yoga is already inside of you. Happiness is there. Yoga helps you peel away the onion layers to get to the core. To freedom. The deepest Divine connection to the Ultimate Light Source.

Come out of wanting and back into acceptance and Joy. A yogi or yogini can turn any situation into bliss. That is a yogi. Yoga is being now. Ultimate yoga is meditation. Just BE.

Yoga is love.

"Love is the light that dissolves all walls between souls." 
~ Paramahansa Yogananda

Through a dedicated practice of all forms of yoga we can participate in the world with a sense of freedom, unaffected from trauma, depression, anger, etc. The freedom is balance in both.


Maggie Anderson is a Yoga & Spiritual Teacher, Reiki Master Teacher, Integrated Energy Therapy® Master Instructor, Soul Coach®, Past Life Coach, Magnified Healing® Master Teacher and Angelights Messenger. She is the author of How I Found My True Inner Peace and Divine Embrace. You can contact Maggie at SpiritualCompassConnection.com.

"Follow Your Bliss. It's Your Spiritual Compass."

The Cycle of Abundance

14-im-nov

by Elysia Gallo

(Article originally published in The Llewellyn Journal.)

"As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them." ~ John F. Kennedy

In late summer, the key word is abundance. Flowers and crops are full of life, fish are jumping in the lakes, trees are lush and thick with foliage, festivals, and fairs sprout up in every small town and big city, and even the weather is generous with abundant sunshine and heart-stopping storms. This is a great time of year to count your blessings and revel in the wild magick of summer. It's also a great time to reap the fruits of your own labors and to be thankful for all the positive energy you have put into your life to reach this point.

Thursday, associated with Jupiter, is the day of prosperity, abundance, and good health, so any magickal workings related to this theme are best done on this day. In 7 Days of Magic you'll find a wealth of ideas, spells, and correspondences for abundance—and you don't need to go overboard, either. As author Ellen Dugan writes, "Personally, I think prosperity and abundance aren't about owning the biggest house, fanciest wardrobe, or the newest car. It's about living within your means, and living well. My definition of prosperity is having enough money in the checking account to cover the bills and to pay for the groceries." As you might expect, there are simple ways to express gratitude and to attract more of a good thing. "Try wearing some honeysuckle-scented perfume to encourage prosperity. Bewitch someone by wearing deep royal blue or brighten up a dreary day by wearing lucky, prosperity-drawing green. Brew up a pot of mint tea to help increase your cash flow. Try adding a pinch of nutmeg or cinnamon to an unscented candle to encourage some fast cash. Bake up a loaf of wheat bread for the family and celebrate abundance and be thankful for all that you have."

That last one happens to tie in very well with the early August celebration of Lughnasadh, which celebrates the first harvest. Grains and breads are usually a focal point of this festival, as is the sentiment of thankfulness. As Sandra Kynes writes, "In our modern world it is easy to forget how important a successful harvest was to our ancestors. They had cause for celebration: A good harvest meant survival in the dark, cold months ahead. A poor or bad harvest signaled the beginning of difficult times. Even though we can nip out to the supermarket whenever we need something, this is a good time to give thought to where our food originates and reverence for the cycles that produce it." Search "Lughnasadh"; on Llewellyn's Encyclopedia and you'll find her Lughnasadh Ritual, which was written to give thanks for what the Lord and Lady provide, and to take stock of your own situation. She also has rituals for the entire year in the helpful book A Year of Ritual.

So whether you give thanks for the material sustenance that we take for granted, or for reaping the rewards of your own spiritual work, remember that with abundance comes gratitude, and with gratitude comes abundance. One cannot exist without the other.

Article originally published in The Llewellyn Journal. Copyright Llewellyn Worldwide, 2007. All rights reserved.

"Life happens. Life in the flow."

We learn over time that nobody can solve our problems, but someone can guide you how to solve the problem. You may receive guidance through a teacher, a guru or even strangers that you run into every day. As we practice yoga we learn that the more we know, the less we truly know. Every day I am reminded how much I truly do not know; a very humbling experience.
Yoga teaches me to be present. To just live for being and enjoying life as it is right NOW. Not ten minutes from now, no five days ago, but right now. We are taught to get out of our heads, to release worries and fears of the past or the future and to only live for this very moment. Presence.

"Lead me from untruth to truth, lead me from darkness to light." ~ Buddha

Through yoga we are reminded that we do have a dark side as well as a light side. We are not to repress the dark side, but embrace that side of our Self. We are the yin and the yang. We ultimately cleanse the dark stuff we hold inside. We shine the light on this. We must make friends with dark side. Both positive and negative balance out the whole. Daily practice refines and improves our inner vision to see our Self more clearly. We no longer need to run from fears. Face them and say I'm not running from you anymore. So much is in our heads, so much dark is only in our heads, self-doubt judgment betrayal. Yoga grounds the body so that the light and dark sides of ourselves become clear. So much is truly untrue. But as we diligently practice we are able to find the middle ground and walk our centered balanced line in life. We gain balance in centered lightheartedness. We can have harmony in both light and dark.

"Yoga tells us that the world is actually a projection of our own thoughts and we can modify our inner world to manifest into our outer world. When our inside realm is at peace and in harmony, our outer world shines this projection back at us."
~ David, Jiva Mukti Yoga co-founder

Yoga is observation.

We can observe our world and see what part that is in us is begin reflected back to us. We can then see what part of us needs modification or adjustment in order to have our outer reality reflect back to us the peace, happiness and love we so greatly desire and deserve.

Yoga is already inside of you. Happiness is there. Yoga helps you peel away the onion layers to get to the core. To freedom. The deepest Divine connection to the Ultimate Light Source.

Come out of wanting and back into acceptance and Joy. A yogi or yogini can turn any situation into bliss. That is a yogi. Yoga is being now. Ultimate yoga is meditation. Just BE.

Yoga is love.

"Love is the light that dissolves all walls between souls." 
~ Paramahansa Yogananda

Through a dedicated practice of all forms of yoga we can participate in the world with a sense of freedom, unaffected from trauma, depression, anger, etc. The freedom is balance in both.


Maggie Anderson is a Yoga & Spiritual Teacher, Reiki Master Teacher, Integrated Energy Therapy® Master Instructor, Soul Coach®, Past Life Coach, Magnified Healing® Master Teacher and Angelights Messenger. She is the author of How I Found My True Inner Peace and Divine Embrace. You can contact Maggie at SpiritualCompassConnection.com.

"Follow Your Bliss. It's Your Spiritual Compass."

Creating A Life of Ease and Abundance

childabuse

by Ellen Peterson

(Article originally published in The Llewellyn Journal.)

Imagine yourself sitting on the shoreline, with the vast ocean lying just in front of you. You lay upon a beach comprised of an infinite number of seashells, too many to ever count. The blue sky above has no visible beginning or end. Each wave falls naturally onto the shore, slowly inching its way toward you. The water thrusts forward, and then slowly retreats back to regain a momentum that allows it to extend out further than it had reached before. Each wave is followed closely by another wave. The abundance spoken here is without limits and simply unfolds in front of your eyes. For perhaps the first time, you realize that abundance does exist and has a natural potential for drawing closer to you.

Although abundance is typically associated with financial gain, it incorporates much more than money. Abundance is having plenty of what you need or desire in your life. It is having that which brings joy and pleasure. It is possible to surmise by the increasing popularity of state lottery tickets and casinos that it is a universal desire to live a happy and prosperous life. Many people are interested in finding quick and effortless ways to achieve happy and fulfilling lives.

Everyone has dreams and desires that yearn to be fulfilled. Yet many are unsure of what they truly desire and therefore delay beginning this simple process. Abundance seems like something that can only be achieved by someone else. It doesn't feel possible to the average person who simply wants to pay his bills each month. Abundance seems larger than what can be applied to an average daily experience of living. Consequently, it is possible to desire abundance and yet disregard it entirely. People are intimidated by the concept of abundance. They overlook it as a possibility for their own life.

Abundance is a spiritual birthright that accompanies life. You only need to look at nature to recognize this important fact. Do you see only one mountain, one tree in the forest, one blade of grass or one winter snowflake? The Universe creates all things in abundance. You are also a product of the Universe. Therefore, you deserve to live in abundance.

Most people mistakenly believe that you must endure years of hardship and sacrifice before you can fully enjoy the harvest of what you sow. Consequently, many people delay doing what they enjoy until some other designated time in their life, such as when they reach retirement: "When I retire, then I will enjoy my life." But why wait until later if you can begin the process of manifesting the life that you desire now?

Abundance for Beginners marks the beginning of a fruitful journey toward a successful and abundant life. It gives you the knowledge and skills to create the life that you want, rather than endure a life that you do not want. Each chapter walks you through simple steps toward identifying your dreams and creating a life of abundance. What would you like to experience in your life—financial security, meaningful work, a loving long-term relationship, a comfortable home, a college education, or a simple, contented life?

Abundance for Beginners explores what you desire for living, and what stands in your way. You will gain valuable insight into your familial beliefs about abundance that may include finances, employment and time management. Explore how each of your parents and grandparents viewed and managed money, time and other relevant experiences of abundance. More importantly, how do these beliefs affect you and your relationship with abundance? Permit yourself to find work that offers more than a paycheck as you differentiate your dreams from the expectations of others. After all, you deserve to live your dreams.

As a beginner to the wonderful world of abundance and fulfillment, you will discover how easy it is to manifest your desires. An abundant life is one in which you lack nothing, because you have everything. Life is perceived as a blessing instead of a challenge. Abundance is more than a particular income, it is an attitude. It is a particular view of life that places gratitude at the forefront. Live your life with gratitude and the blessings contained within will surely multiply and magnify! Open you arms and allow abundance to flow into your life.

I must forewarn you, however. This particular book transmits energy of enthusiasm. Caution! Abundance for Beginners contains content that will cause excitement for living. Read only when you want to increase your energy and vitality for life. Be prepared for the wonderful blessings it brings!

Begin today to live the life of your dreams. After all, you deserve it!

Article originally published in The Llewellyn Journal. Copyright Llewellyn Worldwide, 2008. All rights reserved.

"Life happens. Life in the flow."

We learn over time that nobody can solve our problems, but someone can guide you how to solve the problem. You may receive guidance through a teacher, a guru or even strangers that you run into every day. As we practice yoga we learn that the more we know, the less we truly know. Every day I am reminded how much I truly do not know; a very humbling experience.
Yoga teaches me to be present. To just live for being and enjoying life as it is right NOW. Not ten minutes from now, no five days ago, but right now. We are taught to get out of our heads, to release worries and fears of the past or the future and to only live for this very moment. Presence.

"Lead me from untruth to truth, lead me from darkness to light." ~ Buddha

Through yoga we are reminded that we do have a dark side as well as a light side. We are not to repress the dark side, but embrace that side of our Self. We are the yin and the yang. We ultimately cleanse the dark stuff we hold inside. We shine the light on this. We must make friends with dark side. Both positive and negative balance out the whole. Daily practice refines and improves our inner vision to see our Self more clearly. We no longer need to run from fears. Face them and say I'm not running from you anymore. So much is in our heads, so much dark is only in our heads, self-doubt judgment betrayal. Yoga grounds the body so that the light and dark sides of ourselves become clear. So much is truly untrue. But as we diligently practice we are able to find the middle ground and walk our centered balanced line in life. We gain balance in centered lightheartedness. We can have harmony in both light and dark.

"Yoga tells us that the world is actually a projection of our own thoughts and we can modify our inner world to manifest into our outer world. When our inside realm is at peace and in harmony, our outer world shines this projection back at us."
~ David, Jiva Mukti Yoga co-founder

Yoga is observation.

We can observe our world and see what part that is in us is begin reflected back to us. We can then see what part of us needs modification or adjustment in order to have our outer reality reflect back to us the peace, happiness and love we so greatly desire and deserve.

Yoga is already inside of you. Happiness is there. Yoga helps you peel away the onion layers to get to the core. To freedom. The deepest Divine connection to the Ultimate Light Source.

Come out of wanting and back into acceptance and Joy. A yogi or yogini can turn any situation into bliss. That is a yogi. Yoga is being now. Ultimate yoga is meditation. Just BE.

Yoga is love.

"Love is the light that dissolves all walls between souls." 
~ Paramahansa Yogananda

Through a dedicated practice of all forms of yoga we can participate in the world with a sense of freedom, unaffected from trauma, depression, anger, etc. The freedom is balance in both.


Maggie Anderson is a Yoga & Spiritual Teacher, Reiki Master Teacher, Integrated Energy Therapy® Master Instructor, Soul Coach®, Past Life Coach, Magnified Healing® Master Teacher and Angelights Messenger. She is the author of How I Found My True Inner Peace and Divine Embrace. You can contact Maggie at SpiritualCompassConnection.com.

"Follow Your Bliss. It's Your Spiritual Compass."