February’s Full “Quickening” Moon on 2.8/9. 20

 

FebruarysFullMoon_zps07050fa0[1]

February’s Full “Quickening” Moon

February 8/9, 2020

11:33 pm PST (Feb 8th) / 12:33 am MST (Feb 9th) / 2:33 am EDT (Feb 9th)
On February 18th/9th we celebrate the “Quickening Moon”. The moon will be sitting in the constellation of Leo which brings passion, courage and renewed energy.  Other names for this moon are the Snow Moon,  Trappers Moon, Budding Moon, Moon When Trees Pop, Ice Moon, Storm Moon, Hunger Moon, Horning Moon, Big Winter Moon. The first signs of spring are beginning to show and you actually feel the earth waking up. The energy is dense and slow, it’s a time for new life and rebirth. At this time of year, people are tired of being cooped up. They miss the light and warmth of the sun and like the sleeping plants find themselves reaching for a new beginning.

The moon will be sitting in the constellation of Leo which brings passion, courage and renewed energy. This is a good time for magical workings that focus on personal advancement and achievement. On a personal level work on plans for your future. What do you hope for and what dreams do you hold inside yourself? These are the things to consider as you set goals for yourself. The key is to be willing to accept responsibility for past mistakes and be mature enough to let them go and move on. Dare to dream and hope as you look into the future.

To honor this moon try wearing colors in shades of blue and purples and adorn yourself with Sacred Stones like Rose Quartz, Amethyst and earthy Jaspers.
Blessings,

Cat


I invite you to check out my websites!

The Desert Path: The dusty ramblings of a desert pagan. https://thedesertpath.com/

Cat’s Treasure Trove …. an eclectic collection of jewelry & gifts! https://thedesertpath.com
Sacred Spirals (the place where all paths meet)
https://www.facebook.com/groups/SacredSpirals/

Celtic Tree Month of Rowan  January 21 – February 17

rowan-1352709

Celtic Tree Month of Rowan  January 21 – February 17

Beneath the green and berry red
They flutter about
Making a melody with each wing strum
Magical lil’ creatures

https://nightingaletrails.com/tag/rowan-tree-poem/


TREE INFOMATION The Rowan tree is also known as the Mountain Ash and is a member of the rose family. They can be found growing among ancient settlements and ruins in Europe where they grow “like weeds”, although many of these trees were planted there as well. Rowan trees can grow almost anywhere and do well in poor soil, which would explain their growth in many areas and even grows well at high altitudes.This tree grows up to 40 ft in height and produces flowers in May, after which come the red berries. The berries are said to be sacred food of the gods which were jealously guarded and kept away from man. The tree itself has a round, open-top crown and the leaves which turn red in the fall are 4-8 inches in length and oblong with serrated edges along the point. The berries grow in clusters and each berry has a small design that resembles a pentagram on it. It was this pentagram “design” that linked this tree to witchcraft during the 15th and 16th centuries, it’s reputation became so negative that herbalist’s stopped using it for fear of being labeled as a witch. The bark from the Rowan tree is used for tanning and making dye and the berries are edible and make great jams and jellies. The berries are also still used in herbal medicine as a tea for treating diarrhea and they are very high in vitamin C which makes them useful for treating colds.


ROWAN IN MYTH & MAGICK

Rowan is also known as a fairy tree and as such, it is not advisable to cut branches from the tree itself. If you need to cut branches from one you should always leave the Fae a gift of yourself, like hair or fingernail clippings. By using this tree it is said that you will be protected by the Fae themselves. However, fallen branches are the best if you are going to use the wood. Rowan is thought to be one of the sacred druid trees and can be found growing near many of the ancient stone circles and it played a main role in some of their ceremonies.

———————-

In popular folklore Rowan trees could be planted next to your home as protection against lightning and to promote good luck while sprigs of Rowan could also be hung over doors in the home to ward off the evil eye or if you wore one, it kept the fairies from kidnapping you. They were even planted in churchyards to watch over the dead and protect the living from ghosts. One very popular European custom that was still being used approximately 100 years ago was the construction of rowan wood crosses. These “ornaments” of protection were made from twigs and tied with red thread. Every home had one over the front door as did seedbeds, barns, and pigsties. They were also given to babies before they could be baptized. At Beltane, the berries were sewn into a circle and hung over windows to prevent lightning strikes or strung into necklaces to ward off the evil eye. The berries were also added to healing charms to help the patient to recover faster.

Rune staves were at one time made from Rowan wood simply because of its protective powers as are wands and dowsing rods.
Use Rowan in spells for blessings, grounding & centering, protection, warding against psychic attack, protection against enchantment.

ROWAN PEOPLE

People born in the Month of Rowan are visionaries and strong humanitarians. They are very passionate about what they believe in and can lean toward over-zealous at times. New Moon Rowan people (born in the 1st two weeks of the month) are easily frustrated with others who fail to see or help with the greater awareness of issues like racism, bigotry, and general ignorance. Full Moon Rowan People (born in the last 2 weeks of the month) tend to make big promises, which are usually more than they can handle. They come through to an extent but are unable to completely follow through.

CORRESPONDENCES

The Ogham name from Rowan is Luis (Lush).

Rowan is also known by these names: Delight of the Eye, Quickbeam, Ran Tree, Sorb Apple, Wicken Tree, Witchtree, Thor’s Helper

Deities: Dagda, Brigid, Hecate, Thor, Cerridwen, Vulcan, Pan, Herne, Brigantia

Animals: Ducks, quail

Sacred Stones: Peridot, Smoky Quartz, Diamond


sources: the crystal forest
controversical.com
dutchie.org
The New Book of Magical Names, Phoenix McFarland
Cunninghams Encyclopedia of Magical Herbs, Scott Cunningham
Flower and Tree Magic, Richard Webster
Tree Totem.com

Rowan Tree photo by Irina Naumets/freeimages.com


I invite you to check out my websites!

The Desert Path: The dusty ramblings of a desert pagan. https://thedesertpath.com/

Cat’s Treasure Trove …. an eclectic collection of jewelry & gifts! https://thedesertpath.com

Sacred Spirals (the place where all paths meet)
https://www.facebook.com/groups/SacredSpirals/

The Celtic Tree Month of Birch (Beith/Beth)  December 24th – January 20th.

birch-tree-1-1401073

The Celtic Tree Month of Birch (Beith/Beth) 

December 24th – January 20th.

BIRCH LORE
Birch is the beginning of all things (life) and it is the opposite of last month’s tree Elder (death). This month is symbolized by the unconscious self and raw wild force of the natural world. The tree itself is a symbol of birth, initiation, and sacrifice. It is also associated with horned animals like goats and stags as well as the Horned Gods like Cernunnos, Dagda, and Pan. Other names for this tree are Tree of Birth, Lady of the Woods. The Irish Gaelic word for this tree is “Beith”, which is derived from “Achadhbeith” meaning “the field of birch trees.


TREE INFORMATION

This tree is very common in Europe where it is known as the Silver Birch, it is also grown in North America under the name “weeping birch”. The leaves are long and egg shaped with notched edges. The slender trees have silvery white bark which is close to the color of poplar and aspen and to the untrained eye, these trees may look the same. Birch can grow up to 100 feet in height and will do so unless they can take over their favorite soil which tends to be sandy, in which case they like to spread out in low clumps. In fact, birch trees grow so well that they are the first new trees to sprout up in cut areas. This may be the reason that they are associated with rebirth and birth.


BIRCH IN HEALING

This tree does have a few healing properties. The inner bark is said to be a good pain reliever as are the leaves which as tea, can be used for rheumatism. The sap produces syrup and from the bark comes flour and beer.


BIRCH IN MAGIC & MYTH
Birch is particularly useful for spells involving healing, fertility, new beginnings, blessings, protection, growth, love, and creative inspiration. It is also one of the nine sacred woods used in the sabbat fire and is a representation of the Goddess. Charms made of birch twigs were given to newlyweds to promote fertility and cattle were lightly struck with birch rods for the same reason. Brooms were traditionally made from birch, the twigs were called “Besom twigs” and love spells can be written on strips of birch bark that have been gathered during the new moon. This tree also plays an important role in the pagan tradition of jumping the broomstick which is part of the handfasting ceremony.

The birch can be found in folklore as well. Baby cradles were made from birch wood because it was thought to protect the innocent. On the Isle of Man criminals and lunatics were “birched” in a serious effort to drive out evil.

In Wales during the 13th-14th Centuries lovers were said to meet under these trees in the “house of leaves”. As a token, a remembrance for these occasions wreaths would be made from the leaves of the tree. There is also an English/ Irish custom that took place on December 26th called “the hunting of the wren.” The old year or the “wren” was hunted down by the new year which was symbolized by the robin and was said to carry a birch twig in its claws.

To choose Birch as a magical name is cleansing and promotes your inner light. It would be a good name for a caregiver or for someone who seeks to make positive changes in politic for social issues.


ABOUT BIRCH PEOPLE

Birch people have a marvelous ability to be uplifting to others. They do not care for excess in any areas of their lives and like to promote a calm and content atmosphere where ever they go.


CORRESPONDENCES

Deities: All Horned Gods, Pan, the Dagda, Cernunnos, Thor, Freya, Frigg, Cewrridwen
Sacred Stones: Quartz Crystal, Fluorite
Colors: White and Dark Green


sources: the dutchie.org, The New Book of Magical Names, Phoenix McFarland
Cunninghams Encyclopedia of Magical Herbs, Scott Cunningham
Flower and Tree Magic, Richard Webster
crystal forest.com
treetotem.com

Birch Tree photo courtesy of Vaclav Pastucha/freeimages.com

Winter Solstice/Yule Correspondences

yule105

Winter Solstice/Yule Correspondences

December 22, 2019

The Winter Solstice or Yule (ewe-elle/yool) is the shortest day of the year and the time when pagans celebrate the rebirth of the Sun. The date of this event tends to vary and falls sometime between Dec 20th and Dec 23rd. It is a fire festival and a quarter Sabbat. On this longest night of the year, the now elderly Holly King makes way for the newborn son(sun) who will soon be the Oak King. This holiday is celebrated worldwide and is known as Mean Geimhridh, Mid Winter and Yuletide.

The theme of the Winter Solstice is one of rebirth and renewal. It brings the return of hope and the knowledge that life will continue with the rising of the new sun after the long dark. Those of Christian faith celebrate the birth of Jesus around this time as well, but scholars now say that he was more likely to have been born around Easter. However, Jesus was not the only deity said to have been born at this time, he’s in the company of Pagan gods like Apollo. Mithras, and Horus. After the coming of Christianity, our ancestors continued to celebrate the Winter Solstice and eventually, the church decided that it was easier to incorporate the pagan celebration into theirs rather than to change it altogether. As a result, the pagan Sun God is born on the same day as the Christian Son of God, who is by the way called “the light of the world”. Here is an interesting little tidbit…Did you know that mistletoe was banned from churches due to its pagan/druid association?

Yule is also a festival of light and candles are a traditional item. Candles were lit at midnight as a symbol of the birth of the Sun God. In Ireland, oil lamps were left lit all night long. Special Yule candles were also poplar and one would be lit every night throughout the Twelve Days of Christmas which make up the traditional Yule season. As with any candle, blowing it out causes the accumulated luck that resides in the candle to “blow away”. The purpose of these candles is to bless the house and family in the coming year.


 Yule Correspondences

Colors: Red, Green, White, Gold, Silver

Sacred Stones: Turquoise, Peridot, Serpentine

Herbs: All evergreens, holly, mistletoe, ivy, pine/fir cones, cinnamon

Symbols: Yule Log or Tree, evergreen wreaths, holly/mistletoe, =innamon sticks, bells,

Deities: The Holly King, Odin. Osiris, Hathor, Ixchel, Hecate, the =orns, all winter fae

Food & Drink: Roast fowl, ham, apples, oranges, nuts, mulled cider/wine

Activities for Yule include:

Making treats and feeding our feathered friends.

If you have access to the forest you can find a yule log for your home and decorate it.

Help those less fortunate by donating food or gifts to a good charity.

Staying up all night and celebrate the rebirth of the sun at dawn.

Create a special red Yule candle to burn, buying one is okay too! Decorate your candle with evergreens and holly.


I invite you to check out my websites!

The Desert Path: The dusty ramblings of a desert pagan. https://thedesertpath.com/

 Cat’s Treasure Trove …. an eclectic collection of jewelry & gifts!  https://thedesertpath.com

 Sacred Spirals (the place where all paths meet)
https://www.facebook.com/groups/SacredSpirals/

The Celtic Tree Month of Elder (Ruis )November 25 – December 22nd

elder-1318099

The Celtic Tree Month of Elder (Ruis) November 25 – December 22nd

The theme for this month is death, rebirth and the return of light. This month begins with the dark time of the year and ends with the birth of the sun at the Winter Solstice. Other names for this tree are Frau Holle (German), Eldrum, Ellhorn, Boure Tree, Lady Ellhorn. The word Elder comes from the Anglo-Saxon word “aeld” meaning fire. Evidently, the young branches have hollow stems that make them useful in making a fire.


TREE INFORMATION

The elder tree is both a tree and a shrub and is a member of the honeysuckle family. The shrub grows to about 30 ft. while the tree grows to around 50 ft. Both varieties like damp places along the edge of the woods. Elder has incredible regenerative power and can quickly regrow branches and roots. The tree has beautiful white flowers in the spring, growing in formations that resemble a bridal wreath. The flowers become reddish-black berries and make the most wonderful jellies, jams, and syrups. The branches of the elder tree have a strong resemblance to bones when peeled of their bark. In the middle of the branches is a spongy center that looks similar to marrow. An unsuspecting person might actually believe the bare branches to be human bones!


ELDER IN HEALING

Elder is also a medicinal plant, the berries and flowers have many uses. However, it’s good to point out that on the whole elder is considered poisonous. The dried berries and flowers make wonderful tea which is high in vitamins A, C, iron, Calcium, and Potassium. This makes it beneficial for colds and sore throats. A distilled version of the flowers is good for treating cuts, burns, and scrapes. Please keep in mind that if you pick elderberries make darn sure that they are ripe. Unripe elderberries cause severe diarrhea.


ELDER IN MAGIC & MYTH

The Elder has long been associated with Witches but it appears in Christian myths as the tree of doom. Judas was said to have hung himself from one and the cross of Jesus was made of Elder wood.
The Celts believed that these trees were homes to the Sidhe and treated them with respect when cut the tree produces a reddish sap that made people believe that the spirit within the tree had been hurt. It is considered very bad luck to harm one but if you must cut or prune an elder tree one should always ask permission first. It is also bad luck to make a cradle for a baby out of elder, this is because of the tree’s association with death. Planting an elder tree near your home will create good relations with the fae as well as bringing prosperity to the home and its inhabitants. Even today there remain some taboos against burning the wood. Placing elder wood on your windowsill will keep vampires away, you can also wear it to the same effect. The folklore about vampires is said to be much older than the use of garlic.

Use Elder for spells of banishing, faery magic, healing, protection, and prosperity. Elder wood is also good for making magical tools, but remember to ask first!

As a magical name Elder is good for the person who is serious about magic. It also invokes mystery, luck, and sturdiness of character.


ABOUT ELDER PEOPLE

People born in the Month of Elder can be wonderful healers and seers as well as gifted musicians. They are slow to mature and waste time and energy on things not worthwhile. They can be very curious about profound subjects and study these things intensely. As healers or seers, elder people must choose their words carefully as they can be very persuasive with their speech. They must be careful not to sway the thinking of others and let them make their own decisions.


Correspondences

Deities: The White Goddess, Danu, Cailleach, Boann, Hel, Frey, Vulcan, Venus

Animals: All white animals, raven, pheasant

Sacred Stones: Red Jasper, jet, bloodstone


Compiled and written by Cat from the following sources:
the crystal forest
controversical.com
dutchie.org
The New Book of Magical Names, Phoenix McFarland
Cunninghams Encyclopedia of Magical Herbs, Scott Cunningham
Flower and Tree Magic, Richard Webster

Elder Tree photo courtesy of Michael & Christa Richert/freeimages.com

November’s Full  Beaver Moon 11-12-19

 

Nov Moon
November’s Full  Beaver Moon
November 12, 2019
5:34 am PST/ 6:34 am MST/ 8:34 am EDT

After Samhain, we enter the dark period where the seasons seem to slow down. It was during this time that the ancient people readied themselves for the coming winter. The last harvest was over and they prepared their final provisions and made their homes as winter-proof as possible.

Other names for this months moon are: Beaver Moon ( Colonial. Farmers Almanac says this was the last time to set beaver traps before the ponds froze over, however, the beavers themselves were making ready for the winter just as the people were!) White Moon (China), Trading Moon (Cherokee), Sassafras Moon (Choctaw), Moon When Horns Are Broken Off (Dakota), Dark Moon (Celtic), Snow Moon (Medieval English), Tree Moon (Neo-Pagan), Fog Moon, Frosty Moon, Full Frost Moon, Hunter’s Moon.

November’s moon also honors dark goddesses like Kali, Hecate, and Bast. Use purple candles for your Full Moon observance and burn Full Moon Incense of anise, lavender, and rosemary or single blends of patchouli or mugwort. This is also a good time to cleanse and charge your moonstones, just place them on a windowsill during the night of the full moon.


It is a time of mourning as we join the Goddess in remembering her love who has gone on to the Otherworld. But it is also a time when we must also remember that all periods of mourning DO come to an end. The Crone is now the womb and will become the Mother in about six weeks’ time. While the “outer growth” is slowing down, we find it a good time to work on inner growth. While the Earth Mother rests it is a good time for tying up the loose ends in our lives. Let go of what no longer serves us and say farewell to bad relationships and habits. It is also a time of contemplation when we can strengthen our personal connection to the Divine Source.


To celebrate this full moon try wearing colors in grays or blues and adorn yourself with Lapis Lazuli, Turquoise, Moonstone or Topaz.


November

YET one smile more, departing, distant sun!

One mellow smile through the soft vapoury air,

Ere, o’er the frozen earth, the loud winds ran,

Or snows are sifted o’er the meadows bare.

One smile on the brown hills and naked trees,

And the dark rocks whose summer wreaths are cast,

And the blue Gentian flower, that, in the breeze,

Nods lonely, of her beauteous race the last.

Yet a few sunny days, in which the bee

Shall murmur by the hedge that skim the way,

The cricket chirp upon the russet lea,

And man delight to linger in thy ray.

Yet one rich smile, and we will try to bear

The piercing winter frost, and winds, and darkened air.

William Cullen Bryant 1794-1878

Full Moon Blessings! Cat


I invite you to check out my websites!

The Desert Path: The dusty ramblings of a desert pagan. https://thedesertpath.com/

Cat’s Treasure Trove …. an eclectic collection of jewelry & gifts! https://thedesertpath.com
Sacred Spirals (the place where all paths meet)
https://www.facebook.com/groups/SacredSpirals/

Why the Trees Lose Their Leaves

hidden-sparrow-1549262 (1)

 

Why the Trees Lose Their Leaves

A Tale from the Cherokee Nation as told by Cat

In the beginning, and just as it is today, all creatures including the trees spoke to one another. They shared many things amongst themselves and with their neighbors, just as we two-leggeds do. But during the winter all the birds would fly south. It was warm there, and where the birds would stay until spring when they would return home with their families.

That year as winter approached, Sparrow was hurt. He wasn’t well and he knew that he was not strong enough to make the yearly journey with his family to the south. So Sparrow told them to go to the warm place without him. At first, they refused to leave him but Sparrow insisted and finally they left.

Because of his injuries, Sparrow knew that he would not survive the winter without shelter. So he decided that he would ask the trees to help him. He went first to Oak and said ” Friend Oak, as you can see I am hurt and cannot fly well. Winter is almost here and without shelter, I will die. Will you help me by sheltering me within your beautiful leaves so that I can heal and greet my family when they return in the spring?”

But Oak was an old tree who had little patience for guests particularly during the winter when he liked to sleep.

“Go away Sparrow, I will not spend the winter listening to your chattering. Find somewhere else to make your shelter!”

Sparrow was greatly saddened by Oak’s words, they hurt deep in his tiny spirit.

He then went to see Maple. ” Friend Maple, as you can see I am hurt and cannot fly well. Winter is almost here and without shelter, I will die. Will you help me by sheltering me within your thick, beautiful leaves so that I can heal and greet my family when they return in the spring?” asked Sparrow. But Maple didn’t want a guest for the winter either and said: ” No Sparrow you cannot spend the winter with me…go now and ask another!”

Again, Sparrow’s tiny spirit deeply hurt and turned away to look elsewhere for shelter.

And so it went, each of the trees from whom Sparrow asked for help turned him away. Until Pine was the only tree left. With a heavy heart and little hope, Sparrow went to Pine.

“Friend Pine, as you can see I am hurt and cannot fly well. winter is almost here and without shelter, I will die. Will you help me by sheltering me within your leaves during the winter……?”

Pine was silent for a moment. He was thinking to himself “What is there that I can do? I am the least of all the trees”. But Pines =pirit heard the tiny birds plea and he said: “Friend Sparrow, my leaves are not much, in fact, they are like needles and my branches are different than the other trees…..but you are welcome to share what I have.”

Thank you Pine cried Sparrow and his heart was filled with renewed hope. They spent the long winter together and when spring returned it brought with it Sparrows family. Sparrow flew out to greet them and there was much rejoicing. “Thank you Pine!” cried the happy sparrow family.

Now the Creator had been silently watching all this time. He had heard everything that had transpired between the Trees and Sparrow and he was angry. He called a council meeting of the trees and said ” You trees have been given so much. Yet you would not share even the smallest bit of what you had with Sparrow in his time of need. This hurt my spirit just as it hurt Sparrows! Because of this and from this day forward when winter comes to the land your leaves, your crowning glory will wither, die and blow away.”

Then the Creator spoke to Pine. “Pine you have touched my spirit and given me a great gift through your gift to Sparrow! You had the least to offer yet you gave freely to one in need. When winter comes you alone will keep your leaves and they shall stay green in all seasons. This is my gift to you!”

That is why, to this day, when winter comes Pine stays green while the other trees are bare.


Photo: Hidden Sparrow-Serkan GUL/ freeimages.com

The Desert Path: The dusty ramblings of a desert pagan. https://thedesertpath.com/