Celtic Tree Month of Oak “Protection, Stability & Strength”

english-oak-1409132 Steve Knight

Celtic Tree Month of Oak runs from June 10 -July 7.

“Under yonder oaken tree,
Whose branches oft me shaded;
Elves and fairies dance with glee,
When day’s last beam hath faded:
Then while the stars shine brightly…”
(tradional welsh air circa 1870’s)


OAK TREE LORE

 

Many cultures held the oak tree sacred. The Greeks and Romans viewed this tree as a symbol of power and endurance. They were associated with the Greek deities Artemis, Hecate, Zeus, and Cybele. In Rome, Jupiter and Juno were Lord and Lady of the oak, and each year the celebration of their union was held in an oak grove.   The Norse god Thor was also Lord of the oak. In Scandinavia, this tree was called the “thunder tree and people kept oak branches in their homes to protect against lightning strikes. Germanic tribes and Anglo-Saxon people also honored the oak as did many Native American tribes.

 

The ancient Celts also held the oak sacred. To the ancient Druids, the oak was the most sacred tree in the grove. It was a powerful symbol of the wheel of the year and called the king of the forest. Groves of oak trees were considered sacred ground and to damage, an oak tree carried a penalty of death.   Part of the reason that this tree was given such respect was due to the trees size, life span and it’s production of an important staple food……….acorns. The acorn is claimed to be man’s first food. Acorns are tasty and plentiful and can be eaten as they are or ground into flour. When needed they can also be fed to hogs and other animals.

 

The word “door” comes from the Celtic word for oak, “Duir”. Oak doors are still popular today because they are solid and long-lasting. It is also part of the bardic alphabet, Ogham.   The Druids also found help for their divination and meditation rites in these groves. From the wind in the oak leaves and the birds that lived in the trees, they were said to gain great insight and be given messages from the gods. Oak groves were gathering places, where the Druids would teach students, draw strength and hold meetings, rites, and gatherings. It is also the personification of the Celtic Tree of Life as it appeared to live in lower, middle and upper worlds simultaneously. The oak tree was associated with the thunder god Taranis due to its ability to attract lightning.


OAK IN HEALING

In ancient healing practices, the oak also had its uses. Antiseptic was made from the acorns, while juice from the leave could be applied to a wound for the same purpose. A decoction from the inner bark eased a sore throat, while one from the outer bark would reduce fever. The bark itself also produces “tannin” which is important in the tanning of leather.


OAK TREE IN MAGICK In ritual and magick oak can be used for protection, stability, strength, and success. It has long been the custom to carry a piece of lightning struck oak for protection. This custom is still in use in the British Isles today. Acorns are traditionally carried for fertility and should be gathered at night for this purpose. An acorn should be planted during the dark of the Moon to bring money, and if you catch a falling oak leaf you will be free of illness all winter. Purification can be performed by burning oak leaves and oak galls or serpents eggs are powerful talismans. Since we are coming up on Litha, it is good to point out that oak logs were traditionally burned on this Sabbat.


OAK PEOPLE

 

People who are born during this Tree Month are generally self-motivated and determined. They also carry responsibility well. They are born leaders and know how to handle a crisis. They also tend to be a bit on the serious side but are cheerful and optimistic none the less.

For a man looking for a strong magickal name Oak is a good choice. It symbolizes strength, fertility, and majesty.


OAK CORRESPONDENCES
Folk Names: Jobe’s Nuts, Tanner’s Bark and Juglans
Element: Fire
Deities: All Thunder Gods (Zeus, Thor, Taranis), Lugh, the Dagda, Hecate, Herne, Rhea, Cybele, Artemis, Jupiter, Juno, Dagda, Hercules, Llyr

Ogham Symbol: Duir
Colors: Dark Brown and Black
Animals: Lion, Salamander, Horse (white)
Keyword: Protection

Written by CatSister/LBolotin 2010 from the following resources:
The New Book of Magickal names by Phoenix McFarland
Flower and Tree Magic by Richard Webster
treetotem.com

English Oak photo by Steve Knight/ freeimages.com

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

Cat’s Morning Bits for June 24, 2019

 

CMB green

Cat’s Morning Bits for June 24, 2019

Good Morning Beautiful Souls, grab a cup of your favorite morning brew and start things off with “Today’s Inspirations”. I hope you find something here that will make you feel good or help you on your path today.

Blessings, Cat

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Long about knee-deep in June,
‘Bout the time strawberries melts
On the vines
-James Whitcomb Riley (1849-1916)

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Spiritual Unite: Elder Tree Symbolism – Protection And Reinvention

The Elder tree is a deciduous tree native to many European countries. It has featured in symbolism and traditional medicine across many European cultures for as long as we have records.
It is linked with symbolism related to death, rebirth, self-assessment and legacy

https://www.spiritualunite.com/articles/elder-tree-symbolism-protection-and-reinvention/

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ThoughtCo: How To Start Your Own Pagan or Wiccan Study Group

Many Pagans choose to form study groups rather than covens. The word “coven” implies some degree of hierarchy. In other words, there’s someone nominally in charge who probably has more knowledge than everyone else. This is typically a High Priest or High Priestess. With a study group, however, everyone is on an equal playing field and can learn at the same pace.

https://www.learnreligions.com/start-your-own-pagan-study-group-2562611

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MBG: How To Tune In To The Soft & Receptive Energy Of Cancer Season

Every 30 days or so, the Sun visits a new zodiac sign. During this “season,” everyone feels the prevailing energy, no matter what your Sun sign. Cancer season is a homespun solar spell that will emphasize domestic bliss and family affairs until July 22.

https://www.mindbodygreen.com/articles/heres-how-to-tune-into-the-soft-and-receptive-energy-of-cancer-season

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Daily Good: Happiness Experts on Why Mind Wandering Can Be So Miserable

In the last 15 years, the science of mind wandering has become a popular topic of scholarly study, thanks in part to advances in brain imaging. It turns out that our brains are wily, wild things, and what they do when we’re not paying attention has major implications for our happiness. In 2010, Matt Killingsworth, then a doctoral student at Harvard University, designed an iPhone app that pinged people throughout the day, asking what they were experiencing at that very moment. You’ll want to know his surprising discovery

Read more…..

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Elephant Journal: A Love Ritual to Honor the Goddess in You.

Long ago, in ancient Greece, a long-haired, green-eyed goddess emerged from the sea and graced the shore of the island of Cyprus. She walked barefoot through the sand, delighting in the sensation of the fine grains between her toes. She smiled as the gentle breezes caressed her cheeks and she raised her face to receive the kiss of the sun

https://www.elephantjournal.com/2019/06/an-aphrodite-love-lust-ritual-sophie-haber/

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MNN: 7 haunting songs sung by whales
Listen to eerie audio of humpbacks, bowheads and other whales singing in their natural habitats.

Whales were in dire straits in the 1960s, reduced to a shadow of their former glory by more than a century of overzealous hunting. Ancient mammals that had overseen Earth’s oceans for 50 million years were at the brink of extinction, nearly wiped out in a few generations by humans with harpoons.

https://www.mnn.com/earth-matters/animals/blogs/6-haunting-songs-sung-by-whales

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Natural Living Ideas: 15 Reasons Bergamot Essential Oil Should Be In Every Home

A variety of citrus tree and an herb of the mint family are both known by the name bergamot, but the essential oil of bergamot is extracted from the bergamot orange called Citrus bergamia. This small tree bearing edible fruit that fall somewhere between lemon and grapefruit in taste grows mainly in Mediterranean climate. It is named after the Italian city of Bergamo, the original place of bergamot oil trade.

https://www.naturallivingideas.com/bergamot-essential-oil/

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EarthSky News: Catch Mercury in the west after sunset

No matter where you live on Earth, mid- to late June is an excellent time to look for the planet Mercury in your western sky after sunset. On June 23, 2019, Mercury reaches a milestone the evening sky, as this world swings out to its greatest elongation of 25 degrees east of the setting sun. Mercury, the innermost planet of the solar system, is often lost in the sun’s glare. Yet practiced sky watchers know the best chance of catching Mercury after sunset is generally around the time of Mercury’s greatest eastern elongation. That’s because Mercury is now setting a maximum while after sunset.

https://earthsky.org/tonight/catch-mercury-in-the-west-after-sunset

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Today’s Deity: Kuan Ti

Kuan Ti. In his human incarnation, Kuan Ti was a Chinese war hero and Han dynasty general, well known for his warriorlike skills and intelligent decisions. When he passed away, he was elevated to the status of god. He works arm-in-arm with Archangel Michael on matters of justice within government systems. He says,…

http://angelsandmasters.net/A47.html

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Patheos-Pagan: Get Thee to a Forest

Recently, to begin celebrating Litha a bit early, I went to the forest for a much needed break from day-to-day stresses and life. I know I am fortunate to live in Western North Carolina, where the land itself feels magical, but forests have always had a special meaning in my life.

https://www.patheos.com/blogs/witchindeed/2019/06/get-thee-to-a-forest/

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Inner Journey:

WHAT IF… ?

“The universe is full of magical things patiently waiting for our wits to grow sharper.”
— Eden Phillpotts

What if you were to pretend that you were healthy, wealthy and wise? What if you were to decide to be happy, no matter what else was happening?

Take the power of ‘what if…’ seriously, and you will grasp the power to create a world of your own design. Everything, EVERYTHING begins in the imagination. Put it to work constructively for you.

“The greatest discovery of my generation is that a human being can alter his life by altering his attitudes.”
— William James

“Sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.”
— Lewis Carroll

higherawareness.com
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A Note from the Universe

No more “supposed to’s,” OK?

You’re not supposed to work harder, look better, sleep less, sell more, run faster, talk slower, be happier, stay longer, leave earlier, cook, clean, negotiate, settle, start, stop, move, try, win, shake, rattle or roll.

Other people made all that up.

I love you the way you are,

The Universe

tut.com

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Today’s Recipe: Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Ball Cookies

Make these healthy chocolate chip and oatmeal ball cookies – perfect for any occasion. Your preference if you want these to be bite sized or standard cookie, not to mention these are kid approved too!

https://www.thriftyfun.com/Chocolate-Chip-Oatmeal-Ball-Cookies.html

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Magical Correspondences for Monday

Intentions: Psychic Sensitivity, Women’s Mysteries, Tides, Waters, Emotional Issues, Agriculture, Animals, Female Fertility, Messages, Theft, Reconciliations, Voyages, Dreams, Medicine, Visions and Merchandise

Incense: African Violet, Honeysuckle, Myrtle, Willow, Wormwood
Planet: Moon
Sign: Cancer
Angel: Gabriel
Colors: Silver, White and Gray
Herbs/Plants: Night Flowers, Willow Root, Orris Root, Birch, Motherwort, Vervain, White Rose and White Iris
Stones: Carnelian, Moonstone, Aquamarine, Pearl, Clear Quartz, Flourite, Geodes
Oil: (Moon) Jasmine, Lemon, Sandalwood

Goddesses: Luna, Selene, Diana, Re, Gaeleach, Ida, Artemis [Whom The Greeks Associated With Bast], The Witches, Yemaya, Erzulie, Bast

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Daily Wisdom
June 24, 2019

Colors

“Green is the fresh emblem of well-founded hopes. In blue the spirit can wander, but in green it can rest.”

-Mary Webb, The Spring of Joy, 1917

We live in this colorful world and I think we sometimes take that for granted. So let’s put our attention on colors just a little bit and see what we can learn from their presence in our lives. Green brings to mind growth – all the green grass, green moss, it is cool and restful. Green also represents growth in terms of money, financial growth. But then we also say that we can be “green with envy” and that’s not such a good thing! There’s also the gardener who has a “green thumb” – and I remember Mr. Green Jeans on Captain Kangaroo! What comes to mind when you think of green? Emeralds, Ireland… let your imagination wander a little!

-Lissa Coffey

coffeytalk.com

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Beliefnet: The Buddha’s Best Quotes For Everyday Life

When it comes to ancient wisdom, the Buddha remains one of the most quotable sources on Earth. His words carry straightforward advice, but they are couched in mystical or metaphorical terms that make the quotes perfect for putting on inspirational posters and painting on walls today.

Read more…………………

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About Cat’s Morning Bits: These daily post are reblogged from various email newsletters that I receive each day.

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/

Cat’s Bit’s & Pieces: Celtic Month of Rowan

CBP January
Celtic Month of Rowan  January 21 – February 17

TREE INFORMATION

The Rowan tree is also known as the Mountain Ash and are members 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. Rowans can grow almost anywhere and do well in poor soil, which would explain their growth in many areas. It grows well in high altitude and can grow 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 make them useful for treating colds.

rowan-glory-1346856

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 pigsty’s. 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.

Runestaves were at one time made from Rowan wood simply because of it’s 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 in 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 gereal 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

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

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
Tree Totem.com
Photo Rowan Glory freeimages.com

Cat’s Bits for Nov. 25 – Dec. 2 The Celtic Tree Month of Elder

CBP November

Cat’s Bits for Nov. 25 – Dec. 2 The Celtic Tree Month of Elder

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November Events:

Nov. 25 Celtic Tree Month of Elder begins

December Events:

Dec. 3 Full Long Night’s Moon at 10:47 am EST

Dec. 3 Mercury is Retrograde at 2:34 am EST until Dec. 22

Dec. 13 -20 Hanukkah

Dec. 21 Winter Solstice / Yule and Sun enters Capricorn at 11:28 am EST

Dec. 24 Christmas Eve and Celtic Tree Month of Birch begins

Dec. 25 Christmas Day

Dec. 26 – Jan. 1 Kwanzaa

Dec. 31 New Years Eve

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 elder-1318099
The Celtic Tree Month of Elder: November 25 – December 22nd

The theme for this month is death, rebirth and the return of light. The 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 which make them useful in making a fire.TREE INFORMATION

The elder tree is both a tree and a shrub and are members 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 woods edge. 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 the 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 elder berries make darn sure that they are ripe. Unripe elder berries 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 trees 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 it’s 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 folk lore about vampires is said to be much older than the 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 a 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 worth while. 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

Bright Blessings for a Magickal Week!

Cat

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Elder Tree picture by Michael & Christa Richert/freeimages.com

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

Laura (Cat) Bolotin has been following an eclectic pagan/spiritual path for over 25 years. She currently lives in Western Colorado where she enjoys communing with nature, desert crawling, belly dancing, nature photography, jewelry crafting and writing stuff she hopes will help others along their path. She is married and owned by a “clowder” of cats.

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Please feel free to check out my websites!

The Desert Path: The Dusty Ramblings of a Desert Pagan. https://catsister.wordpress.com

Sacred Spirals on Facebook: The Place Where All Paths Meet  https://www.facebook.com/groups/sacredSpirals/

This page may be shared with others as long as no changes are made, and ALL credits, links, photos and copyrights remain intact. All written work and are created by and copyrighted to LBolotin/Cat 2007-2017