Monday Meditation: Just what do you want, already?

Uranus went retrograde yesterday morning, bringing the total of rx planets to five. The rest of this year is about reflection, introspection and making big changes within. It's time to put your courage to the sticking place and really decide what you want in life. Easier said than done, right? I know. I've been there, as recently as last week.

My current employer is not a horrible place to work. I have wonderful co-workers and a lot of flexibility in my schedule. But, there are issues that drive me crazy. A couple of bad hiring decisions on the part of those in management have resulted in a lot of stress for our team. As the resident fix-it girl, I've been trying to keep our department from imploding. I am not actually working in the job for which I was hired, and it doesn't look like the promises made to me when it was offered will come through. So, when a recruiter from a large corporation reached out to me asking if I'd like to explore a new job opportunity, I jumped at it. A lot more money, doing what I love, and it's located in one of my favorite cities- Philadelphia-of COURSE I want to explore it!

Five phone interviews later, I went to Philly for a lunch interview. The building was huge! The chaos of the work day was well in swing, and people were moving in synchronization with the designed flow of the structure. I checked in, and was directed to the 34th floor. That was simply the reception area. The recruiter came out to greet me, and proceeded to take me to the 42nd floor, where I was greeted by one of the two people with whom I'd be interviewing. We then walked up two flights of steps to the lunch area. It was huge, also! Everything you could want to eat from hot, prepared foods to make your own was there. One never needed to leave that building if he/she wanted to purchase lunch. We got our food and sat down to the interview.

All was well, and we seemed to be getting along fine. I looked out the 44th floor window which had a large view of the city, and realized that I was extremely uncomfortable. I felt as if I were drowning in a sea of people. The buildings were cold, hard steel and glass, and no magics could be felt anywhere. I realized at that moment that I did not want this job. I did not want to be in a corporation that has 117,000 employees. I did not want this at all!  We parted company at the end of the interview, and I hastened home.

In that epiphany, I realized what I did and did not want for my life. A past self would have been kicking my backside for turning down the job.This self is celebrating. 

I highly recommend reading the following articles, particularly as we have a Blue moon coming up this Friday. We won't get another one until 2018. Both of these discuss the themes of finding what you really want to do and be in life.

As always, feel free to leave a comment or reach out to me via email/social media. I love hearing from you!

Sláinte mhaith (to your good health), 

Flashback Friday: 13 Things for Pagans To Do This Weekend

We Pagans are fun people. Our rituals are usually entertaining (I've never seen anyone fall asleep at one!), outdoors, and the food is amazing. Since most of us don't have a weekly service we attend, sometimes the in-between weekends can leave us trying to figure out what to do. I realize that this is Mother's Day weekend, but not everyone is a mom or has a mom around, so I think it's a perfect time for an article like this. You can do these solo, with your mom, or with your family/friends. None of these require you to have a lot of money, either.  Enjoy!

1. Go for a walk in the woods. Bring a crystal, a stone, some dried herbs, etc... and give an offering back to Nature. If you bring seeds, please be sure they are native and will not disturb the ecosystem in the area.

2. Drumming. If you don't have drums, why let that stop you? Create your own percussion section out of different household items.

3.  Create a homemade masterpiece, statue or altar piece out of clay. Want to make your own?

4. Create a playlist just for dancing, then dance!

5. Create a playlist for singing, and sing your heart out. If you have friends/family to share with, have a karaoke contest!

6. Have a baking contest with friends/family. Split up into teams and judges and bake (apply to bbq, chili, name your favorite foods- or, make it a meal) your favorite foods, then have a feast!

7. Create a Park Cleanup Day! Bring trash bags, split up into teams and go clean a local park. If you do it as a Pagan Group, see if your local paper will cover it and give us Pagans some good press! ;)

8. Make a vision board! Need some ideas and how to's?

9. Create an "I Love Me" jar! Write down things you love about yourself (you can get friends and family to write up things they love about you too) on paper.. cut into individual strips and put into a jar (totally decorate that jar, too!). This can become your daily affirmation jar or one you use for when you might be feeling down.

10. Volunteer to work at a nature center, an animal rescue site, or a homeless shelter. Doing good things for the world is good for the soul! You'd be surprised at how flexible they are.. if you only can or want to work for a couple of hours on a weekend, you're still making a huge difference!

11. Make your own coat of arms!

12. Go camping. Indoors or out. Indoors, you can make your own tent out of blankets and chairs, make some fun foods and just have a movie night. Outdoors, you can camp in your own back yard if you like, have a campfire on the grill or firepit, sing, roast marshmallows and look at the stars.

13. The Earth is Mother to us all. Send her a Mother's Day card by doing something kind for her. Write her a love note and read it out loud to her. Plant something native to your area, clean up, reduce waste, replace lightbulbs, etc... even one small change you make this weekend honors Her.

I hope you've found these ideas helpful!
Have a fantastic Friday and a wonderful weekend!


Witchy Wednesday: New Moon Magic

Julie Dilon Art
There's a new moon in Cancer today. The moon rules Cancer, and Cancer rules the home. It's a perfect time for house protection and goals surrounding your family life. Here are a few tips and a rite for your BoS  (Book of Shadows):

New Moon Magic

Timing: The moon rises at dawn and sets at sunset. For the best use of this energy, magick should be performed between dawn and sunset. This is not to say that you cannot work at night. However, to get the most punch for your magick, choose the correct timing. Also check the planetary hours to give added power to the working.

Conjuring: New Moon workings can be done from the day of the new moon to 3 1/2 days after. Naturally, the closer you are to the new moon, the better your chances of success. Your work should manifest by the full moon or the next new moon. If it does not, repeat the working.
Things to work for include: Beauty, Health, Self-Improvement, Farms and Gardens, Job Hunting, Love and Romance, Networking.

Meditations: Work on bringing abundance into your life. Picture the harmony you desire, the current needs you have. Make a mind movie about how you want both short-and long-term goals to manifest. Concentrate also on parts of yourself (body, mind, or spirit) that need regeneration.

I wrote this particular ritual well over a decade ago, and the style of the ritual is more of a Wiccan nature. Dragons represent strong allies and protective power. Feel free to print and use for your own home, and modify as you see fit.

Dragon House Protection Ritual
 by Kallan Kennedy©


Elemental Candles
Black and White candles
Chalice of Water
Dragon’s blood incense
Sea Salt
Dragon’s blood oil

Call upon the Dragons of the Watchtowers:

“Hail Great Dragon of the East, whose golden eyes pierce the darkest skies. Guardian of the Air, Protector of our minds and spirits. I call upon the King of the Air Dragons to attend this rite as a guardian, defender and participant. We bid you Hail and Welcome!” (Light the East candle)

“Hail Great Dragon of the South, whose crimson eyes pierce the bluest flames. Guardian of the Fire, Protector of our bodies and child within us. I call upon the King of the Fire Dragons, to attend this rite as a guardian, defender, and participant. We bid you Hail and Welcome!” (Light the South candle)

“Hail Great Dragon of the West, whose azure eyes pierce the watery depths. Guardian of the Water, Protector of our emotions and goals. I call upon the Queen of the Water Dragons, to attend this rite as a guardian, defender, and participant. We bid you Hail and Welcome!” (Light the West candle)

“Hail Great Dragon of the North, whose emerald eyes bore to the center of the nadir. Guardian of the Earth, Protector of our dreams and prosperity. I call upon the Queen of the Earth Dragons, to attend this rite as guardian, defender, and participant. We bid you Hail and Welcome!”  (Light the North candle)

Light the Black and White candles and the incense.

Chant three times:

“O Great Dragons wondrous and wise
Powers of Earth, Water, Fire and Skies
Light and Darkness join us here
Sweep clean this place and make it clear
Remove the entity causing us pain
Make this house sacred space again
Away with wrong, and in with right
Powerful Dragons of Darkness and Light
Clear our minds and set us free
Destroy this ugly entity
Elementals Strong and Old
Restore the balance, Dragons Bold!”

Plunge the athame into the sea salt, then into the chalice and say:

“As salt dissolves in water, so shall the hold of all negatives on my person and property.”  (Each person in the household must do this)

Using the tip of the athame, put three small piles of salt into the water. Stir it clockwise three times. (Place the bell, chalice of salt water, athame, incense, and dragon’s blood oil on the tray).

Begin moving clockwise through the house (so you end up at the front door). First person will carry the burning incense through the room, this is followed by the next person who will make a banishing pentagram at each window, door, and mirror. The next person will ring the bell at each window, door, and mirror. The next person will take the salt water and mark an X on each side of the opening, using his/her forefinger dipped into the chalice. The next person will take dragon’s blood oil on his/her forefinger and mark a Draco’s eye upon the top of each opening.

Move onto all rooms until you end up at the front door. Seal this door last. When finished, open the front door, and yell, “BE GONE!” Shut the door quickly, and seal it with saltwater and dragon’s blood oil (using a banishing pentagram and Draco’s eye)

Pour the saltwater down the drain immediately, and clean the chalice. (Make sure to clean the athames as saltwater is corrosive to metal).

Take the tools back to the altar, stoke up the incense (if needed), and pull the smoke to you, using your hands. Continue until you feel lighter.

“We call to You, Our Guardian Dragons, with much love and friendship. We ask your aid in protecting each one of us, our property, our pets, our loved ones. We thank you for your presence here. We honor you, Ancient Spirits of the Air, Fire, Water and Earth. We are grateful for your protection and teachings. We ask that you stay with us, protecting us, keeping us safe, guarding and guiding us from this moment on…

“Light Calls to Light, Darkness to the Dark, Male to Male, Female to Female
Only those of good intent may enter here
The way is barred to all who wish us harm
We give our greeting only to our friends.”

(Take a moment and meditate upon the Dragon Kings and Queens. Soon, you will feel them returning to the ritual. Greet them with dignity and thank them for what they have done. Listen closely in case they offer any suggestions as to what caused the problems and what you can do to avoid this entity in the future. When the dragons have finished communicating with you, thank them again)

“Farewell to you, O Dragons fair! Fire, Water, Earth and Air. Together we make magick well by power deep and Dragon spell. We thank you for your protection
We honor your counsel through introspection In peace go now, return once more
To teach us magick and ancient lore. Draconis! Draconis! Draconis!”
(Extinguish the Black and White candles)

Farewell, Ancient Queen of the Earth Dragons! We thank you for your attendance tonight. We thank you for your defense and protection over our family. We thank you for your guidance. Go if you must, stay if you will, but you are always welcome among us. Farewell, and Blessed Be! (Extinguish the Earth candle)

Farewell, Ancient Queen of the Water Dragons! We thank you for your attendance tonight. We thank you for your defense and protection over our family. We thank you for your guidance. Go if you must, stay if you will, but you are always welcome among us. Farewell, and Blessed Be! (Extinguish the Water candle)

Farewell, Ancient King of the Fire Dragons! We thank you for your attendance tonight. We thank you for your defense and protection over our family. We thank you for your guidance. Go if you must, stay if you will, but you are always welcome among us. Farewell, and Blessed Be! (Extinguish the Fire candle)

Farewell, Ancient King of the Air Dragons! We thank you for your attendance tonight. We thank you for your defense and protection over our family. We thank you for your guidance. Go if you must, stay if you will, but you are always welcome among us. Farewell, and Blessed Be! (Extinguish the Air candle)

(Allow the incense to burn as an offering to the Dragons)

Draco's eye

Dauntless Update: Touched by a Goddess ;)

Sharon Aven Rawson
At the beginning of this year, I chose to go with a theme, rather than a set of goals. My theme was "Dauntless", which means showing fearlessness and determination. I had an idea for creating a jar where I'd write down all of the dauntless things I'd done, and then compile a list at the end of the year.

My jar was pretty lame, to be honest. I didn't put much creativity or effort into it, because I really wasn't able to capture it. I'm a writer who kind of plays with crafty stuff.. not an artist who writes.

A couple of weeks' ago, I happened to catch a glimpse of one of Sharon Rawson's wish jars from her shop, Touch of the Goddess, and it hit me- I could ask her if she might create me a Dauntless jar on commission! Being the ever-gracious artist/shop owner that she is, she was more than happy to accommodate.

I explained my Dauntless theme, and told her that I'd prefer not to give her specifics. I wanted to give her leeway to use her own creativity- that's where the magic happens!

She messaged me to let me know that it was completed last week. She explained that she wanted to honor both my naval service and my Celtic heritage. The word "Dauntless" reminded her of a fine ship, and that's where the inspiration took her.

My jar arrived yesterday and I couldn't be happier. Take a look!

She even created a poem to go with it:

She was Dauntless
sailing the seas of life
Heart first.
The integrity of her core
strong from tests
of rough seas
and hidden ice.
Sails filled with the winds
that blew her way,
tacking and jibing
a course to her destination,
she stayed true to her path.
Filling the decks
with her Celtic song,
breathing in the salt scent
of her passage,
she made her way
to ports known
and not.
The anchor used
but sparingly.
Her Soul knowing
that for her,
the journey
was the purpose.

 The attention to detail on this jar is amazing. I am honored to have this stunning creation in my possession. There were some other lovely extras that were sent as well, but those get to be my little secret. If you want a jar, you should totally go check out her selection, or commission her to make you one. If I go with another theme next year, I'm so going to get her to make me another one!

Be sure you like her Facebook page and make it one of your "see firsts" in your newsfeed by clicking on the arrow next to Liked, then select "See First".

Thank you so much, Sharon! My beautiful jar is in its special place of honor, filled with my dauntless acts to date. I couldn't be more thrilled!

Monday Meditation: Mulengro Part 2

Last week, we began a review of Mulengro. If you missed it, read this first.

I know your Name now, you Liar!
You, the killing machine of the soul!
I'll tell!
I'll tell!
If they can hear me they will know your Name also!
Too late! You are known: "Divide and Conquer"!
Your Faces, they are 7!
Your essences, they are 7!
Your Powers, they are 7!
And together they are you! Mulengro!
You are Greed!
You are Envy!
You are Guilt!
You are Deceit!
You are Denial!
You are Expectation!!
You are Assumption!!

-from The Feast of Flesh and Spirit by Ly de Angeles

In order to eradicate this disease from our lives, we must first identify the masks it wears. Last week, we discussed expectation and assumption. Let's look at the etymology of these words. You may want to print this out or look them up for yourself as you meditate upon this today. These come from the Online Etymology Dictionary.

"excessively eager desire to possess," c. 1600, a back-formation from greedy.
 In Greek, the word was philargyros, literally "money-loving." A German word for it is habsüchtig, from haben "to have" + sucht "sickness, disease," with sense tending toward "passion for."

late 13c., from Old French envie "envy, jealousy, rivalry" (10c.), from Latin invidia "envy, jealousy" (source also of Spanish envidia, Portuguese inveja), from invidus "envious, having hatred or ill-will," from invidere "to envy, hate," earlier "look at (with malice), cast an evil eye upon," from in- "upon" (see in- (2)) + videre "to see" (see vision).
Jealousy is the malign feeling which is often had toward a rival, or possible rival, for the possession of that which we greatly desire, as in love or ambition. Envy is a similar feeling toward one, whether rival or not, who already possesses that which we greatly desire. Jealousy is enmity prompted by fear; envy is enmity prompted by covetousness. [Century Dictionary]
c. 1300, from Old French deceite, fem. past participle of deceveir (see deceive).

Deceive: c. 1300, from Old French decevoir "to deceive" (12c., Modern French décevoir), from Latin decipere "to ensnare, take in, beguile, cheat," from de- "from" or pejorative + capere "to take" (see capable). 
Deceit is a shorter and more energetic word for deceitfulness, indicating the quality; it is also, but more rarely, used to express the act or manner of deceiving. The reverse is true of deception, which is properly the act or course by which one deceives, and not properly the quality; it may express the state of being deceived. Fraud is an act or series of acts of deceit by which one attempts to benefit himself at the expense of others. It is generally a breaking of the law; the others are not. [entry for "deceit" in "The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia," 1902]
1520s; see deny + -al (2). Replaced earlier denyance (mid-15c.). Meaning "unconscious suppression of painful or embarrassing feelings" first attested 1914 in A.A. Brill's translation of Freud's "Psychopathology of Everyday Life"; phrase in denial popularized 1980s.

deny- early 14c., from Old French denoiir "deny, repudiate, withhold," from Latin denegare "to deny, reject, refuse" (source of Italian dinegarre, Spanish denegar), from de- "away" (seede-) + negare "refuse, say 'no,' " from Old Latin nec "not," from Italic base *nek- "not," from PIE root *ne- "no, not" -al suffix forming adjectives from nouns or other adjectives, "of, like, related to, pertaining to," Middle English -al-el, from French or directly from Latin -alis

1530s, from Middle French expectation (14c.) or directly from Latin expectationem/exspectationem (nominative expectatio/exspectatio) "anticipation, an awaiting," noun of action from past participle stem of expectare/exspectare (see expect). Related: Expectations.

expect- 1550s, "wait, defer action," from Latin expectare/exspectare "await, look out for; desire, hope, long for, anticipate; look for with anticipation," from ex- "thoroughly" (see ex-) +spectare "to look," frequentative of specere "to look at"

Meaning "to suppose, to take for granted as the basis of argument" is first recorded 1590s; that of "to take or put on (an appearance, etc.)" is from c. 1600. Related: Assumed;assuming. Early past participle was assumpt. In rhetorical usage, assume expresses what the assumer postulates, often as a confessed hypothesis; presume expresses what the presumer really believes.

 I don't doubt there are several of you who skimmed or skipped through those definitions. They are important to understand if you want to rid yourself of this disease. Note the dates of these as well. A study of the early Renaissance period and its effects on society will help you in your understanding of Mulengro's origin and spread.

This week, take the time to delve into these definitions and begin identifying how they play out in your life. Next week, we'll discuss some ideas for eradication.

If you have any questions, feel free to email me or pm me on Facebook.


Flashback Friday: Maya Angelou and Kung Fu Panda- Lessons in Boundaries

I posted this on my original Secret Life blog, and it seems pertinent for this week, so I'm sharing again here:

Maya Angelou and Kung Fu Panda- Lessons in boundaries

Maya Angelou told a story that really stuck with me when it comes to courage in relation to boundaries. She was hosting a party in which there were quite a few people. From another room, she overheard someone telling a racist/homophobic joke. She literally stopped the music, the rooms all got silent as she confronted the joke-teller with "Not in my house." She then said, "Is this your purse? Did you come with anyone? It is time for you to leave". 

Oprah Winfrey asked her how she had the courage to confront that kind of thing, since it is difficult for some people to draw that kind of boundary. Maya Angelou said,  (and I am paraphrasing) "Words are powerful. Words strung together in just the right way can incite men to go to war. Words like that 'joke' are  poison. Just like using the 'N-word'. I don't allow it to be used around me. You can say you're trying to take it back, but it's a poisonous word. You will not paint my walls with poison of any kind. I don't want it seeping into the curtains, the furniture..." 

She then went on to talk about how courage is like a muscle that must be exercised a little each day. You don't start off trying to lift 200lbs of weight. You start off with 5lbs, then work your way up. You learn to speak up and use your courage to draw the boundaries around you for what is and isn't acceptable in your life. Then, you can lift the 200 lb weight of stopping a party and requiring a guest to leave. 

I think this is so important to all of us. I know so many of my friends and family members who are empaths. They feel what other people are feeling, which tends to attract people who are damaged and particularly those who tend toward feeling sorry for themselves. Many of these empaths start off their days with a happy outlook and a spring in their steps, only to encounter one of these Nay-sayer Nancies who drag them right down into depression.

This happened to a beloved friend of mine this morning. My advice to her was to remember Kung Fu Panda. He realizes that the "secret ingredient" is himself. As Ly De Angeles would say, "The warrior is the weapon- not the weapon in the hands of the warrior."  From there, he was able to fight off his greatest opponent and win, because he not only believed in himself, he did not take the threats and attacks so seriously. He simply let it all bounce right off of him as he laughed his way through it.

I encouraged my friend to see herself as the panda and to let it all bounce right off. Be happy, regardless of who is attempting to attack you, intentional or not. 

I invite you to try these exercises yourself today. If your boundaries have been crossed to the point where you feel constricted, start taking them back, little by little at first, until your courage comes back. Be like Kung Fu Panda and believe in yourself. Let it all bounce right off and don't take it all so seriously.

If you've never seen the movie, you totally should. And, if you have, I'll leave you with this scene:

Witchy Wednesday: Rescue Rocks

My rescue friends
I'm an animist, so it probably comes as no surprise that I believe rocks have a sentience. Just because we can't speak the language of stones, doesn't mean they don't have life. Their lifespans are much longer than ours, as it takes quite awhile for them to make it back to the ocean's tectonic plates for 'recycling'. This brings me to questioning what we're doing with tumbled stones and gems. These creatures are mined from deep within the earth, and are never asked if they would like to be beaten to a shining, smooth surface and then used for magical purposes.

One of my friends sent me volcanic rock from Hawaii a few years' ago. Several of my magical compadres were concerned, as the goddess Pele looks none-to-kindly on those who are in possession of her stolen children.  There are more than enough rumors and stories about curses laid upon those who take or keep these treasures to give one a sense of pause.

I've never had an issue with this particular rock, as he sits in a place of honor on my altar. I've also been 'gifted' with other stones and pieces of coral reef (dead, according to the world's view) which also have their place alongside him. Yes, the rock is a male. How do I know that? I don't. I just have a sense of maleness from him, so he gets to be a guy rock. Anyway, I've been told on more than one occasion that Pele must really like me- let's hope that's the case, huh?

 I don't use gemstones or rocks in magical workings. I consider these creatures to be rescues in need of my care. I have hematite, apache tear, amethyst, turquoise, pyrite, and several others that like their home away from home. They are treated well, given respect, and loved.

I'm not judging anyone who uses gemstones or rocks in their magical workings. I am only talking about my own experience and understanding of the world around me. If you've ever felt this way, I just want you to know that you aren't alone. Someone else shares your brand of crazy thinking ;)

Some day, I may try to get these lovelies back to their homes, or give them one outside. I think I'll know when the time is right for that. For now, we are enjoying one another's company :)

Monday Meditation: Mulengro (Introduction)

For those of you who are new to this blog, I'd like to take this opportunity to welcome you and say, "Thank you!" for your interest. As my loyal readers are well aware, I'm a huge fan of Ly De Angeles and her works. One of the things I've learned from her is to identify and work to eradicate what she has termed as "Mulengro". While I've written on this subject before, I want to spend the next few weeks repeating this, as it's an important concept to understand and put into practice, no matter your particular flavor of spirituality.

Ly De Angeles describes Mulengro in her book, "Witchcraft: Theory and Practice":

"Mulengro is the name of an entity that is like an alien barb; one that has become an out-of-control arrow that pierces generation upon generation with is poison. It feeds on its own likeness, and people are its host."

She explains further: "Mulengro denies the individual the right to be an individual and assures that is victims remain emotionally crippled. Mulengro is passed on like a virus through the perpetuation of the seven attributes of greed, envy, guilt, deceit, denial, expectation, and assumption. The only way to rid the psyche and spirit of the virus is to abruptly and completely stop hosting it!"

It's easier said than done. It's a sneaky little villain that lies in wait to attack anyone with an opening. Two of it's biggest culprits are usually expectation and assumption.

Assumption is defined as "a thing that is accepted as true or as certain to happen, without proof."

Expectation is defined as "a strong belief that something will happen or be the case in the future."

Is she young or old?
What both of these have in common is my own perception. Perception is my way of thinking about something that can be easily skewed by the information at my disposal. If I don't have all of the information, I can fill in the gaps through assumption. If my assumption appears to stand up, then I move into the realm of expectation that this assumption can be applied elsewhere or toward the future. When these do not turn out to be true, I have been incorrect and that hurts my ego (bring in the rest of the faces of Mulengro here).

I have to be on consistent guard against allowing this kind of thinking to creep in, and not just inside my own head. De Angeles again: "Do not allow others to perpetuate any kind of these seven faces of Mulengro on you, and do not use them to abort the truth, no matter what the seeming advantage. These faces (behind each of them are the other six) are all vices of disrespect."

Ouch! Disrespect- of self, of others, of the Mystery. I don't want to be disrespectful to any of us! And yet, that's exactly what happens when I allow Mulengro in, even just a little bit.

Assumption and expectation are not the same as intuition. Intuition will usually warn you when these two are in the area. Learning to listen to that voice is a process. It takes time, vigilance and a release of ego, all of which go against our human nature. Most of our battles lie within us, and in order to conquer ourselves, we must be aware of the true enemy.
To name a thing is to have power over it. Now that we've named Mulengro, we can devise strategies against him.

Next week, we'll talk more about this. Your homework, should you choose to accept it, will be to begin identifying areas in your life where you have observed Mulengro.

Feel free to email me if you have any questions!