Tag Archives: Wicca

What’s wrong with being a witch?

I don’t know what angered me more—that tea party candidate Christine O’Donnell trashed witchcraft or that people have a problem with a Wiccan running for political office. I wasn’t the only pagan upset about this.

When I first saw the video with O’Donnell admitting to dabbling in witchcraft, I thought she was a nut ball and was glad she wouldn’t get elected since the majority of conservatives are Christian. But then I realized that by thinking that way, I was being as narrow-minded as everyone else that objects to any non-Christian religion.

Why couldn’t someone with a brain admit to being a witch? Someone who could explain Wicca/pagan practices correctly? Pagans had a chance to have a voice and instead were aligned with Devil worshippers.

So, what’s wrong with being a witch? Nothing, unless witches are truly as horrible as Christine O’Donnell described them. Thanks to her rambling nonsense, witches will have to work even harder to fix an already tarnished reputation among the mainstream population. Pagans do not worship the Devil, they don’t even believe in the Devil. The Devil is a Christian invention. I can see how people get confused, especially when the dictionary doesn’t even get it right. A witch practices Wicca.

It would be awesome to have a Wiccan elected to a political office, but it was obvious from the way O’Donnell giggled and babbled in the video that she wasn’t serious about being a witch, and she didn’t know what she was talking about. And, Ms. O’Donnell, you don’t dabble in witchcraft. Witchcraft/paganism is a lifestyle.

Kelley Heckart

‘Timeless tales of romance, conflict & magic’

http://www.kelleyheckart.com

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Celebrating the Pagan Summer Solstice

The Summer Solstice—Midsummer

Link to Author's Blog, Irish Gypsy's Parlor

The word “Solstice” comes from the Latin words, sol sistere – “sun stand still”. Indeed the sun does seem to stand still as the sun reaches it’s furthest point from the equator. Summer Solstice harkens the longest day of the year, when warmth spills upon the land and fruitful bounties are enjoyed by all creatures. In the northern hemisphere of our planet, the summer solstice occurs during June. This year it is June 21st and many pagans will be celebrating this one day with reverence and celebration.

Long ago, pagans didn’t denote “midsummer” as the first day of summer—for it wasn’t then and isn’t now—save for our modern society deemed the day so. How ironic that after this longest day the daylight gets shorter! So our ancestors realized Summer Solstice is the beginning of the END of summer.

Our ancestors were not ruled by convention or committee—no, they were ruled by the seasons of harvest, sexual awareness in the Spring of all living creatures and the need to store for the winter months ahead. Survival depended on their sensitivity to abnormal weather patterns, bad harvest years, the swelling and receding ocean waves for good fishing days.

The summer solstice is often the time of the first harvest and hence a celebration of this bounty has been held for hundreds of years. The day lasts so long, the gaiety lasted well into night, with dancing, food, mead, wine and merriment. The sun, Sol, brings life to growing crops in the field and warmth to the bones of the workers who harvested. This is reflected in the midsummer rituals or plucking herbs, for this special day brings added vigor, potency to the herbs for medicine and spells.

When night approaches, the pagan fires will burn brightly in honor of the sun. This is a time to strengthen the bonds between the participants as they chant to Sol’s continued service to the earth and it’s creatures. Some sacred sites, around the world will draw huge crowds as the Summer Solstice is honored. Stonehenge has an entrance-way that was aligned with the solstice sunrise and is a popular gathering place for modern druids and others enthusiasts on midsummer’s day.

For Wiccans, Midsummer is one of the four “Lesser Sabbats” or “Low Holidays”. Some now call this day Litha, the day of the Lord of Light, the Oak King who sits solidly on a greenwood throne.  Across the world, many pagans will throw off the hooded robes and bath skyclad under the sun while honoring Sol. Gypsies will also honor this day in similar abandon to their hard work during harvest and their respect for Gaia.

So as the Celts & Slavs celebrate with dancing & bonfires to help increase the sun’s energy, the Chinese honor Li, the Chinese Goddess of Light. One of the most enduring rituals of the Summer Solstice is were the Druids’ celebrate of the “wedding of Heaven and Earth”, that brought about our present day belief of a “lucky” wedding in June.

Pagan spirit gatherings or festivals are very common in June and I will festival, eat and drink all day with pagans. Women will wear braided circlets of clover and flowers on their hair, wrists and ankles. Men will wear chaplets of oak leaves and flowers around their heads in honor of the Oak King. On Midsummer’s Eve, I will join the group, assembling to light a sacred fire, then stay up all night to welcome the moon and the dawn. For this year’s “Honey Moon” I will drink the mead made from fermented honey, leap through the edge of the bonfire flames and pick herbs to use in white magick throughout the remaining year. I will wear the protective garland made of herbs and flowers and little else as I bath in the moon’s glow, skyclad. Being Irish I will place yarrow under my pillow to dream of my next lover.

Life comes from Sol, we are all dependent on this magnificent ball of gas, and for one day I will be pagan and in awe. I will give respect and honor as would a child, bearing witness to the beginning of “dream-time” as visions of future events will unfold at nightfall. I will throw nine different types of herbs on the balefire. Just picked-Mistletoe, vervain, St. John’s Wort, heartsease, lavender, and others chosen from herbs typical of this season such as fresh yarrow.

I will swim in the lake as water is an important part of the Midsummer pagan ritual. Like in times past we will swim in waters, flowing toward the rising sun as it climbs in the Summer Solstice morning sky. This is healing, cleansing and protective. Gathering the dew of Midsummer bestows health to whoever drinks the elixir. Fetch running water of Midsummer morn and mix it with ashes from the bonfire that night. On the next day at home, sprinkled the mixture around the house, yard and on loved ones to bestow protection and luck.

May you have wonderful dreams, a fruitful harvest and find the love you search during this Summer Solstice.

Blessed Be,

Chérie Angélique de Sues, Romance Author

39 Days of Prayer – Day 22

Day 22 – Connection

I enter into this day with the intention of self evolution

That I may grow and change into the healthy, whole person I am meant to be

Keep me mindful, Goddess

of your light that lives within me

I know you whisper to my mind, heart, and spirit

Prepare me to hear your voice as loud and clear as my own.

Help me to trust my intuition without fear, and to embrace my insights without embarrassment.

Teach me to sit still, and to wait on your instruction in all situations.

Remind me that no answer is my answer.

And please impart these lessons Goddess, with gentleness and love.

Thank you, Lady.

Blessed Be.

39 Days of Prayer – Day 1

Day 1 – Preparation for a New Beginning

Gracious Goddess, Wondrous God

You who are the sun and moon,

I stand before you, open and willing for my heart to be transformed

by your light and your love.

May my eyes be opened so that I may witness

the parts of myself that I have kept hidden.

I surrender my self-doubt, and accept your gift of assurance.

Thank you Lady and Lord,

for making my transformation one of grace and ease.

So mote it be.

From Moon’s Resource Library

I wondered what to start with on my first day at Pagan and Pen. As an author writing takes up so much of my time, when I’m not being a mom or serving my goddess community, so I figure might as well start there. Most people who are familiar with my work know I write multicultural paranormal fiction with a pagan flair and starring lgbt characters, most often bi and/or lesbian women.

When writing fiction one of the things that is crucial for me is the time spent doing my research. Nothing turns me off of something I’m reading or watching then finding the creator of the art didn’t do their research. I thought it might be fun for me to share a few of the books I most often use when I write. Now this doesn’t mean that when I am dealing with a special setting, culture. Etc… there aren’t tons more books I rely on, but these are used for most of my writing as a whole.

I am very fortunate to have the author of the first book as my teacher for many years. If you only get one book to touch and awaken your deep feminine magics THIS is the one, my sisters.

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Women’s Rites, Women’s Mysteries: Intuitive Ritual Creation
Author: Ruth Rhiannon Barrett

How can women turn birthday parties, baby showers, and other rites of passage into empowering celebrations brimming with meaning and fiery feminine spirit?

Emphasizing the Dianic Wiccan tradition, Barrett shows women how they can create empowering, transformative rituals that strengthen their profound connection to the Goddess. Instead of providing shortcuts, scripts, or rote rituals, she teaches women how to think like a ritualist. Step by step, readers learn the ritual-making process: developing a purpose and theme, building an altar, preparing emotionally and mentally (energetics), spellcasting, and more. For beginners or experienced ritualists, solitaries or groups, this thorough, engaging guide to the art of ritual-making can help women commemorate every sacred milestone-from menstruation to marriage to menopause-that touches their lives.

“Ruth Barrett brings her many years of experience in teaching and priestessing in the Dianic tradition to this book. Her thoughtfulness, intelligence and depth of understanding make it a valuable resource and will open a new perspective for many Pagans.” -Starhawk, best-selling author of
The Spiral Dance and The Fifth Sacred Thing

Okay, I admit I likely have 35+ herbalism books on my shelves, but if I could only take one with me in a pinch, there’s no doubt, it’d be this one. Clear and concise in its information and instructions, Susan Weed is one of the first authors I think of when it comes to Green Witchery.

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Healing Wise
Author: Susan Weed

Superb herbal in the feminine-intuitive mode. Complete instructions for using common plants for food, beauty, medicine, and longevity.

The next two are self expanitory. I’m obsessive about find the the perfect names for my main and secondary characters, and sometime I go a little crazy with all the names in my book. These two books really help me give into that urge.

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Beyond Jennifer & Jason, Madison & Montana: What to Name Your Baby Now
Author: Linda Rosenkrantz and Pamela Redmond Satran

Synopsis:

The authors of “Beyond Jennifer & Jason revolutionized the world of American baby names by giving parents the information and insights they really needed. By identifying current styles and trends–instead of reciting the same old alphabetical lists of name derivations and meanings–their bestselling book changed baby-naming forever. Now this perennial favorite has been updated with new names and more fresh, fun, and indispensable advice. Hip, sweet, and user-friendly, “the best baby-naming book ever written” (“The News Journal) is now even better.

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The Complete Book of Magical Names (new version)
Author: Phoenix McFarland

There is tremendous energy within names. Powerful symbols of identity, inspiration, and intention, names are magical tools of self-transformation. The original version of this classic guide, included in the prestigious New York Times “Reader’s Guide to the Best 10,000 Books in Print,” helped thousands find the perfect name for everything from their child to their coven to their cat. Now, it has been revised and expanded, and is bigger and better than ever.

The New Book of Magical Names presents a dictionary of more than 7,000 names (including pronunciations) taken from modern and ancient sources, including nature, mythology, history, fantasy literature, folklore, and faraway lands. Discover how religious and political movements, long-forgotten customs and social mores have influenced names throughout time. This fascinating guide features:

• The only dictionary of non-Christian names in print
• Names indexed both alphabetically and by the qualities they invoke      (beauty, wealth, power, and more)
• Quizzes to help you figure out your magical name
• Rituals to unleash the power within your name

Whether you are looking for a baby shower gift, initiating a new era in your own life, wanting to find a pen name, a magical name, or even a name for your house, The New Book of Magical Names is your indispensable resource.

Here are just a few of the books that make my life as a writer, and in many ways as a pagan woman, a lot easier.