Bright Moon, Kemetic

Kemetic Bright Moon 2/27

After a few months where I was too ill to properly do the oracular ritual, I spent extra time with my Eye Goddesses this month, copying prayers I had previously written into the new book that will house all my ritual material. The omen they gave me is very positive:

This moon cycle, let us fill you with joy and nourishment, as the sun returns to awaken and nourish the plants. This is a time of renewal, a time to celebrate abundance, and to make way for new things. It has been a hard year, but do not notice only the bad. Celebrate those things which went well! Celebrate what you accomplished! And plan for even better things to come. Join us, chewing onions and cucumbers, and be awash with the light of the Sun!

The message this time is also confirmation for an upcoming event in my religious calendar: The Feast of Ra and His Eyes, IV Peret 1-5. (Various sources will give various days, but I’d drawn a few together for this one, into something cohesive, which would make sense for a temple to both Bast and Sekhmet.) My celebration is as follows:

  • IV Peret 1 (March 7): Feast of RA, and the Presentation of the Boat
  • IV Peret 2-4 (March 8-10): Sailing Procession
  • IV Peret 5 (March 11): Feast of the Eyes!
    • Chewing Onions for Bast
    • Chewing Cucumbers for Sekhmet

You’re welcome to join me in celebrating this way, or devising your own celebration, but at the very least make time to notice the return of the light! (In the Northern Hemisphere, at least – sorry to any folks from the Southern Hemisphere, but you may need to devise your own religious calendar!) I will hopefully be sharing pictures of my shrine during the celebration, on the shrine tumblr.

The next full moon is March 28th. If you have any questions, or if you would like to request a personal message or heka for March, please email the shrine here. And if you are interested in supporting the shrine, I have a tip jar set up here. Thanks!

Celtic Polytheism, Divination, Paganism

Crow Folks: A Divination

Imbolc is usually the end of my run of Dark Moon rituals to Na Morrigna, but this year, as with last, I’ve been asked to continue. This month the journey did not leave me with succinct quotes or a rough poem, but rather I was called to draw a few cards and then discuss the themes therein. I tend to use the Archeon Tarot deck for “Morrigna Stuff”, and lately I’ve been incorporating ogham in as well, so here’s what I drew:

The Ace of Pentacles, The Two of Pentacles (reversed), The Eight of Cups (reversed), and then nGetal.

For most of us, the beginning of a new secular calendar year brings with it a lot of reflection and change, as we lay out plans for the rest of the year, hopefully improving things that didn’t work out well in the last one. This year, there’s still a lot of uncertainty regarding the pandemic, and for those of us in the US, the political changeover associated with the new President and the outcomes of recent elections. We are gathering up what we can of our lives, though, and we’ve taken the first few steps on our journey through the new year. Many of us are bringing more unresolved issues than usual into the new year, and while January is somewhat liminal, February often brings harsh realities into focus, as we truly settle in. New problems will arrive soon (if they haven’t already) and will begin to exacerbate old problems we’ve carried over from last year, leaving us feeling like we’re juggling too many things, and in many cases, struggling with burn-out. Organization and mini self care breaks will help some, but ultimately it looks like this moon will be one of struggle as we decide how many difficulties we can actually juggle, and what me might need to let fall. One of the things we must prioritize is our own health: physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual. Many old wounds, never quite totally healed, have been reopened in the past year, and these need true healing, although it is likely the process will be exhausting and painful. Boundaries may need to be drawn sharply; things that drain us but provide no value should be excised from our lives like a scalpel removing a tumor. The last year was hard – this one will be harder still if we lose our footing.


Despite the somber tone of the conversation and reading, however, I felt nothing but warmth and encouragement from Na Morrigna Themselves. They are here to help us, and we are here to help each other, as we go through this month – and this year – together.

Celtic Polytheism, Paganism

Crow Folks: Battle is Here

This month, as is my custom, I journeyed to speak to Na Morrigna on the dark moon. Last month they gave me questions, but this month we have returned to the oracular poetry they’ve been inspiring me to write on their behalf. Here is the poem:

Battle is here.
Slaughter is here.
Blood spatters;
The Morrigna dance above spears.

A steady eye, a steady arm:
These are the traits of the best warriors.

Magic flies like arrows.
Magic shields like armour.
Slice through your enemy’s magic;
Pierce your enemy’s armour.

Protect those you fight for;
Destroy those you fight against.

Battle is a dance long and winding;
War is a path lengthy and strenuous.
Rest and tend to the wounded after each encounter.
Find time for rest and sustenance as you go to war.

Crows fly in undulating waves,
Black birds in a murmuration.
Find your place in the swarm.
Find the proper time for your flight.

I will definitely be doing a working this weekend or coming week, and I’ll choose the time carefully. But a friend of mine recently posted some really wise advice on Facebook that I’ll paraphrase here:

If you’re going to do political magic or battle sorcery, your first step should be to cleanse yourself and your space if you haven’t recently, and to re-up your personal shields and wards. I’ve spoken about this before on the blog, though not recently, but: Xtians may not consider what they do to be magic, and they would probably doubly deny any accusation of banework, but that doesn’t stop the effects from being very, very real. We magic workers have allies, and so have they – and not all of theirs are who you might expect. So go into this work knowing that you have opponents who, if possibly not as conscious of what they are doing, are still largely effective. Much of my work has been to undo theirs, and while I do tend to find their work not always as precise as most of the witches I work beside, they do not lack for power. Do not underestimate their abilities.

Call on your closest allies as you do this work: the Morrigna, but also any other deities to whom you are devoted, any guides or guardians who might be able to aid you, and any Ancestors you work with, particularly if they fought against the Confederacy or the Nazis in their lifetime.

It may be difficult to build a new relationship quickly enough to do this work with anyone new, however, and be on guard against deceitful spirits, anyone claiming to be who they are not. Discernment will be key, and trusted long-term allies will be the most help.

After doing the work, be prepared to do a bit of aftercare. Ground, center, take care of any bodily needs, and check your shields and wards again. Make sure you have a plan for upkeep. Land spirits, if you are on friendly terms with them, can give assistance with warding spaces like your home and place of work. Don’t neglect shields on yourself and your car if you have one, and make sure that you are shielded against attack through your dreams and while you sleep.

If you do still find yourself being targeted or experiencing backlash, ask someone you trust for assistance, or reach out to myself or another healer for help. We Crows work better as a flock, moving as one, supporting each other in community.

Deck Review, Reviews

Tarot Deck Review: The Mini Tarot of Pagan Cats

Deck: The Mini Tarot of Pagan Cats
Publisher: Lo Scarabeo
Writer: Magdelina Messina
Artist: Lola Airaghi
Overall Rating: 8/10

image (c) Lo Scarabeo

Cardstock: It appears to be Lo Scarabeo’s regular cardstock, so these are pretty sturdy despite being only 3 inches tall. They’re semi glossy and not too hard to riffle shuffle once you get used to the small size. The box is a little beat up, however, because this is the deck I usually take with in my purse.

Artwork: The artwork is pretty Rider-Waite-Smith inspired, except with cats. The art style is pretty realistic, and reminds me of some children’s books, with pretty detailed foregrounds and backgrounds that are either more sketched or just a solid color on a lot of the cards. Most of the cats are realistically proportioned and in natural poses, even when they’re depicted engaging in more human or fantastical activities.

Book: The booklet is in English, Italian, Spanish, and German, so each card has barely more than a phrase or a few keywords. I definitely would not recommend anyone using it as a main interpretation aid, unless they’ve already studied the tarot in depth and are using it as more of mnemonic aid. The booklet also contains one suggested 5-card spread.

Likes: I like the artwork; I think it’s cute. There are certainly a lot of pagans who like cats, and it’s somewhat easier not to project unconscious biases of race or gender accidentally when intuitive reading, because there aren’t human figures (although some of the titles are still gendered: The Empress, The King of Pentacles, etc). The small size is a plus, since I can carry it around with me, though Lo Scarabeo has quite a few decks in their catalog that are this mini size.

Dislikes: I think the booklet is basically useless, and could have been written much better than it was, even including the space constraints, but that’s really my only dislike.

Overall Recommendation

Obviously you’re not going to love this deck if you don’t like cats, but otherwise I think it’s a pretty good travel deck for anyone who’s a seasoned reader and familiar with the RWS system. The artwork lends itself well to intuitive interpretation, but has recognizable RWS imagery. There’s also a regular size edition of this deck, though I haven’t looked at that one in person, which may work better for those who want cards in the standard size, instead of the mini ones, which measure 3 inches x 1.75 inches.

Bright Moon, Kemetic, Paganism

Kemetic Bright Moon 12/29

This month, my Bright Moon Ritual first began with the celebration of the return of Bast and Sekhmet, as the second half of the Wandering Eye Holiday, She Is Led Back. I wrote a prayer after last month for the first half, The Eye Wanders, and you can see that Lamentation, and the accompanying Exultation for their return on my tumblr e-shrine.

After the rejoicing at their return, I did my usual ritual, and received this omen:

There are hidden currents swirling around you: some for good and some for ill. Use your intuition to discern between them. Cleanse yourself and your surroundings when you feel polluted, when you are overcome with despair, when you waver in your commitment to ma’at. This moon cycle is a time for waiting, but hold your ground while you wait. Do not run in fear. Let the chaos swirl around you. This transition will be difficult, and will not bring immediate release. Coals can smolder for a long time.

The next full moon is January 28. If you have any questions, or if you would like to request a personal message or heka for January, please email the shrine here. And if you are interested in supporting the shrine, I have a tip jar set up here. Thanks!


Celtic Polytheism, Paganism

Crow Folks: Questions to Answer

This time, when I went to visit Na Morrigna, I was told not to write poetry, but rather convey a series of questions. Questions for us all to answer, and to answer as fully as possible – to contemplate and journal about and really engage with deeply. Here they are.

What do you live for?
What would you be willing to die for?
What do you stand for?

How can you continue your magical education so that you continue to develop your magical skills?
How can you continue to develop your leadership skills so that they are not outpaced by your ambition?
How can you learn to take criticism and use it to help you grow?

How can you commit to keeping with the struggle when the victories you have achieved so far are not enough?
How can you prevent yourself from getting discouraged by small, mixed-bag results?
How can you stay engaged in the struggle despite large looming obstacles?

Nine questions, likely with difficult and complicated answers. I’m going to journal about them, and I suggest you do the same, if you don’t have ready answers.

The next Dark Moon is 1/13/2020.

Other Updates

Kemetic Bright Moon 11/29

This Bright Moon, I had everything in place and enough time to do the full ritual on the day before the night of the fullest moon, and it was a good feeling to be able to do it without rushing, with plenty of time to really lean in to the connection and gain not only an omen to be shared, but also some information for myself. But first, the omen from Bast and Sekhmet:

Our power wanes with the sun, in this far northern place. Our attention will be elsewhere for a time: in the south where the sun is at its peak; in the tropics where the sun is more constant; at the side of those whose blood still boils. If you feel like you must rest, rest. Do not be ashamed to seek enjoyment where you can find it. This dark and cold season demands a slower pace, and time to curl up with warmth and stillness. We will return on the next Bright Moon – feast us then.

The last part became a conversation about holiday timing, as from my calendar the Wandering Eye / She Is Led Back holiday happens in late December and early January, but Sopdet (the star Sirius) rises at a slightly different time here, and though they tell me there is a stellar timing for the Wandering Eye festival as well, it also coincided with the Winter Solstice, and for me here in this “northern place” (I’m near Washington, DC, USA, which isn’t very far north, but we do get snow) and my general full moon timing, they think it would be best for me to celebrate the two parts of the festival as beginning the day after the full moon before the solstice, and the day of the full moon after the solstice. I queried about years when the full moons are closer to the solstice and they laughed, telling me not to worry about other years. Fair enough, considering my oath is only ever for the next year. But for this year, that means that I’ll put my statues away after the sun goes down tonight, for the Wandering, and I’ll greet them back again in the morning (dawn, if I can manage it) on December 30th, and then give them offerings every day through January 5th, to feast their Return. Check out the tumblr in the next few days for pictures of the festival at my shrine!


The next full moon is December 30th. If you have any questions, or if you would like to request a personal message or heka for then, please email the shrine here. And if you are interested in supporting the shrine, I have a tip jar set up here. Thanks!

Celtic Polytheism

Crow Folks: Keep Circling

I’m a few days overdue, but here is the belated poem, fruit of my most recent Dark Moon trip to see Na Morrigna:

A cart rushing,
Without knowing its direction;
It jolts, tipping.
Wolves run through the forest,
Paws touching earth gently,
Clear direction and purpose.
Purpose before going;
Direction before rushing:
Balance in movement.
Harmonious actions,
Togetherness in purpose,
Groups* moving towards balance.
Moving towards peace,
Peace without conflict,
Peace below skies.**
Through skies, clouds move slowly,
Turning though seasons,
Gradual changes.
Wind keeps blowing;
Rain keeps falling;
Ravens still circle.

The imagery here is that of regrouping, of making plans and being certain of goals before rushing headlong back into battle. The larger goal will take a longer journey; this is a marathon, not a 50 meter dash, and we’ll be meeting these challenges with lots of different groups of people. Teamwork is going to be important, and a certain amount of compromise, at least among those who are working in good faith towards common goals.

Notes:
*I think the Irish word here is buiden, which is a band of people, or like a military troop of people, but the context isn’t specifically military here and They didn’t mean just Their own people or I would have used “squadron” again. It means like, groups of activists from different organizations and callings, working together towards common goals, and taking on each other’s fights so we’re all in step together.
** This is, of course, an intentional reference to the Peace Prophecy, translated at the link here by Morgan Daimler.

Celtic Polytheism, Paganism

Crow Folks: I behold them bathed in red

This dark moon, as I do every dark moon, I journeyed to Na Morrigna to ask them for an omen for myself and other devotees. While I normally expect that the message from them will be most valuable to those closest to me in geography and practice, this time I specifically mentioned the upcoming US elections, and so this message is mainly for those residing in the US. I was shown imagery in the cauldron, given wisdom, and distilled those into this inspired poem.

Uncertainty hangs in the air
Like smoke over a grease fire
Like a shroud over a corpse

Dark greasy smoke
Of discontent
Of malevolence

Water spreads a grease fire
Fire engulfing buildings and streets
Streets that glitter with glass in the night

Crows are gathered to face the onslaught
Each poised for easy flight
Ready to do their work

One darts out
Another takes their place
The first returns to roost

Be cautious as you defend
Beware deceit and trickery
A dishonorable opponent follows no rules of engagement

Tell me of the streets of this country, Fedelm;
Tell me what outcome you see.

Red with blood and fire I see them;
I behold them bathed in red.


Be careful out there, my fellow Crows. Things will get worse before they get better. This is a time of struggle; may we find ways to make the necessary changes.

Bright Moon, Kemetic

Bright Moon 10/1

This bright moon, like I have done for several years now, I went to seek an omen from Bast and Sekhmet. They showed me frightful images, but they also counseled hope. The message I received is repeated below.

Servants of isfet are preparing to attack the righteous, and the upholders of ma’at must continue to bear the torch for others to see. You will be the light of righteousness, reflected upon each other. We stand behind you, sharing in your outrage, sharpening our claws on those who would oppose you.

Work to vanquish A/p/e/p and his allies during this season of the waning of the sun. As the strength of the sun wanes, find warmth in each other, huddled around your shared fires, each a beacon of hope for another.

When the sun begins to wax again, there will be a time to fight more boldly, to stand unwaveringly though you are gripped with terror and trepidation. Your society is chaotic and in flux. Spend this moon cycle preparing for uncertainty.

Note: Although the imagery that came along with the words “shared fires” was that of literal campfires, I think that was meant to be a reference to social group Zoom calls, everyone staring at their own little electronic fire.

In other news, I am loving my new ritual set up, but I still don’t have good pictures. White shift, linen veil, a few pieces of ritual jewelry. Matching red offering dishes and oil lamp. Music, scent. The taste of reverted offerings. At some point when I have the time to set it up beforehand I may try to record one of these – or at least do a dummy recording of myself in ritual garb reciting my main prayer.

The next full moon is October 31st. If you have any questions, or if you would like to request a personal message or heka for then, please email the shrine here. And if you are interested in supporting the shrine, I have a tip jar set up here. Thanks!