Other Updates, Spiritwork

Discernment

This past weekend, Glasreo and I attended an informal pagan discussion hosted by the Fellowship Beyond the Star, on the topic of discernment.  It was a very fruitful discussion, starting with general definitions and then branching off into individual stories of encounters and omens and general spirit work and work with deities.  It was fun to hear other people’s stories, and helpful for all of us to have others’ insight into our experiences.  In general, the discussion of discernment hinged on a couple of key points:

  1. Ruling out mundane causes.  This is a big one.  Sometimes a flock of crows is just a flock of crows, sometimes candles fall over, sometimes your air vents cause incense smoke to move a certain way.  Chances are, if it’s something pretty normal or totally plausible, it’s not a sign of something more.  It’s a good idea to learn as much about the science of whatever you’re working with as possible, and to get to know your environment.  Seeing a heron isn’t unusual if you’re near a body of water – but you might think it is unusual if you don’t know that there’s water nearby!  However, it’s important to know that you can’t ever rule out mundane causes 100%.  What you should aim to do is figure out whether what you’ve witnessed is unusual or common.  Unusual things may just be an omen!  This also applies to trancework: if you’re doing journeywork or astral travelling or something like that, and you aren’t sure whether what you’re experiencing is something you made up or insight you’re receiving, ask yourself whether the patterns are unusual  or common.  If you were going to daydream about the topic, is this what you would probably come up with?  Does everything seem expected, do you feel like it’s all something you’ve already known?  Then you’re likely to still be inside your imagination.  If something unexpected occurs or doesn’t go the way you’re trying to create it, that’s probably coming from somewhere outside yourself.
  2. Trusting one’s intuition.  At some point after you’ve examined the possibility of mundane causes, you need to think about how you feel, in general.  Sometimes a very common thing can be an omen anyway because it’s what you needed, or because the timing was exactly perfect.  If you feel strongly that it’s an omen, or that you’re receiving insight from outside yourself, and it’s not just wishful thinking, you probably are.  Learning to tell wishful thinking from truth requires a lot of practice evaluating your own thoughts and that can be hard, but the self-awareness that comes with that struggle is very much worth the end result.  You’ll learn to trust your intuition and in doing so, trust yourself and your experiences.  It can really deepen your practice to not be second-guessing yourself constantly.
  3. Using lore as a guideline.  Lore is really useful if you’re getting messages from deities or other lore-known spirits.  You can look up their animal associations, get a sense of their looks or personality, or other things and check those details against the information you’re getting.  Lining up 100% isn’t required for you to be correct, but nothing should be huge and glaringly contradictory.  Blonde vs brunette is probably fine; mountain associations instead of lake associations might be a bit too far.
  4. Using divination to double check the message. If you can, it’s always a good idea to do divination or to ask someone else to do divination for you and ask “Am I seeing things clearly?” or “Is the message coming from X deity?” or, “Am I really supposed to do Y thing?” to double check that you’re getting the message from who you think you are, and that it’s trying to tell you what you think it is.  Divination can also be helpful if the message is clear but vague: you can ask how or when, and get more information.  Be careful if you’re divining for yourself, though, that you’re not falling victim to wishful thinking (yep, there’s that little gremlin again).
  5. Asking for further signs or repetition.  One of the best ways to figure out if you’re really getting messages from spirits when they’re jumbled and unclear is to ask for some kind of unusual, specific sign.  Don’t make it something impossible, but make sure that it really is something unusual, that you’ll notice and pick up on.  You can ask for a certain number of something like birds, or ask to see a specific animal on your drive to work, or something like that.  It might be a good idea to give it a deadline, too, so that you’re not waiting forever and wondering if the answer is just “no”.  Repetition, whether you asked for it or not, can also be an indication that something is really a message.  Maybe there’s a cardinal nesting near your house, so seeing that one isn’t unusual, but throughout the day you see another 5 or 6 cardinals all over the city and there are pictures of cardinals indoors as well – if you feel like you’re being stalked by something, it may very well be a sign!
  6. Journaling.  One of the best things you can do when you receive a message or something you think might be a message or just witness something really unusual is to write it down!  Maybe it was a message, but it will only make sense after the fact.  Maybe the message is in the repetition, but until you write it down you don’t realize that you only really ever see crows on Wednesdays.  Even if you are sure it’s a message and you know who it’s from and what it means, it’s still a good idea to record it, since a lot of the messages will make even more sense with time.  That was you can also keep track of how different spirits and deities usually approach you with new messages, too, and it can help you figure out if things are messages or not much more quickly!

Hopefully this all makes sense to you, and maybe it’ll even help some of you – it certainly helped me to discuss it and write it all out!

Demo Reading, Divination, Other Updates

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year from us here at Serendipities!  I hope you all had a wonderful holiday season, whatever holidays you celebrated!  I’ve been planning away and I have some exciting news coming up soon!

First of all, Glasreo and I are signed up for a Soul Retrieval certification training this month, taught by Monika Healing Coyote.  She’s a friend and a talented fellow healer and we’re very excited that she’s offering this class, because we think it will help us in our healing work.  We’re always interested in learning new ways to use energy and spirit guidance to heal ourselves and those around us.

On that topic, I’m scheduling another reiki class sometime at the end of this month or in February, since the last one went so well and I have more interest!  It will most likely be a weekend afternoon, held at our house in Reston, VA, so if you are interested please please contact us as soon as possible to tell me what dates you are available.  Cost is going to be $50 + the cost of a manual for I and II. (If you already have the William Rand manual for level I, level 2 is the same book).  The class itself will include some practice time and munchies, too!

Other new things on their way are Rune Readings, as soon as I get the pictures taken and the listing written, and I have three new tarot decks: Archeon Tarot, Tarot of the Boroughs, and the mini Tarot of Pagan Cats.  So, expect to see listings with those soon – again, I still need to take pictures, and that requires good natural lighting, which the world has not been providing me with, lately.  They’ll be up by the end of the month, gods willing.

The other thing I’m going to start doing is mini monthly horoscope-type Lenormand readings here in the blog, for all of you!  So here are your two cards for January:

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The Crossroads refers to choices and decisions we have to make, which makes sense for the beginning of the year: we’re all trying to decide what we’ll work on, what we’ll try to accomplish, and what we want the new year to be like.  The Fish are a symbol of finances, money, wealth, and our “wants” (as opposed to “needs”).  Together, the two cards are telling us to pay attention to our financial choices, and to make sure what we’re choosing to do this year really lines up with our own values and desires – not the values and desires of others.  If we can make the right choices, January should be a time of increase for us all.  May it be so!  And, as always – if you want a more in-depth personal reading, I’d be very happy to do one for you. Just take a look in the Etsy Shop or send us an email!

 

Etsy Shop Update, Other Updates, Social Media Update

Updates!

Well, the shop tumblog is now up and running!  So if you’re on tumblr, please be a dear and give us a follow!  Right now it’s mostly posting Etsy shop listings and updates, but no more than 3 posts a day, we don’t want to spam anyone.  In the future that will probably be the fastest place to learn about anything new going on in the shop besides Etsy itself!

Speaking of Etsy, our seasonal coupon went live this past weekend!  Use coupon code YULETIDE2016 for 10% off anything and everything in the shop!  Code is valid through the 2nd of January.

Also coming up soon (hopefully by Yule): rune readings are FINALLY going to be in the shop, at approx $2/rune.  These are going to be pulls, not casts, but I’ve gotten some good feedback on my free rune readings on tumblr, so I think I’m now confident enough to offer them for sale.  I use the Elder Futhark, on slices of wood, and I’ll be included pictures in those readings, just like with the cards.

On the reiki side of things, we’re finally more or less open for business (though we may get a zero gravity chair to replace the one we’ve been using, for additional comfort) and I’ve updated the Facebook Page with the street name – when you book an appointment I’ll be more than happy to give you the entire address and parking directions, but we’re working out of our home and I don’t really want our home address plastered all over the interwebs.  I’ve also added “Services” to the FB page, with approximate prices so you have an idea, though divination and jewelry are still primarily sold through the Etsy Shop.

In the realm of upcoming things, Glasreo and I will be attending a Soul Retrieval workshop in January which is very exciting and should meld well with our reiki practice, so stay tuned to hear about that (and maybe book a reiki session for the spring to get some of your lost soul pieces back, *winkwink*) and hopefully I’ll be blogging weekly again from here on, now that we’re all moved into our new place!

Demo Reading, Divination, Other Updates

A Demo Lenormand Reading

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10-Card Lenormand Reading for @hedgefae!

Overview of the Spread

Everything in this spread is organized according to the position of each card relative to the significator, which is located in the center.  Things in the column to the right indicate the future; things to the left indicate the past; things in the same column as the significator indicate the present moment. Things in the row above the significator indicate things that you know and/or have control over; things below indicate things you don’t know and/or do not have control over; things in the same row as the significator indicate things that you have some (but not complete) knowledge of, and/or some (but not complete) control over.  Card meanings are read in their position and in their relation to each other.

10 Card Spread

1: Storks

This card symbolizes transitions and progress, and located here in the “past” column and the “in your knowledge/control” row, I believe this represents a change you deliberately made.  This is the “arriving” part of what is probably a long transition.

2: Ring

This card symbolizes contracts and commitments, and located in the “present” column and the “in your knowledge/control” row, it seems to be alluding to some sort of offer or negotiation you could take or are taking – if that reminds you of something, you should probably make that commitment.

3: Snake (Shedding)

This card symbolizes transformation and healing, and located in the “future” column and the “in your knowledge/control” row, this is the result of the previous two cards.  You arrived, you committed, and now that you’re in a safe place, it’s time to transform, to transmute, to become a better version of yourself.   This isn’t always an easy process, but it’s always worth the effort.  (If you need help, you might try looking into resources for Shadow Work, learning to delve into your own Shadow side.)

4: Scythe

This card symbolizes cutting ties and reaping harvest.  Situated in the “past” column and in the “somewhat in your knowledge/control” row, this likely indicates a situation in the recent past where you weren’t responsible for the sudden change, but you made the most of what you were given.  Getting laid off would be an example of the kind of situation I’m talking about, or suddenly leaving school for financial reasons. This echoes the card above it – here was the push to leave where you were in the past, before you arrived wherever you are now.

5&6: Sun & Boat

There are two cards here because I decided to put you significator in a “house” to use the tenth card.  Lenormand spreads can also be done “in houses”, which normally applies to the Grand Tableau, where you lay out all the cards, and then lay a different deck down on top of those, but here I’m just using it as an extra little nugget of information.  The Boat card, your significator for this question, symbolizes freedom and travel.  It is in the House of Sun, which adds themes of luck and growth and optimism. Together, they symbolize a need to find new energy, to find a new path that will lighten you and give you more opportunities for growth and development, and that doing so will increase your happiness and help you achieve greater things.  It’s time to move up in the world.  So whatever door just closed, one that’s a lot better should be opening right about now.  You just need to find it.  This is very likely to require some sort of contract, echoing the card above.

7: Moon

This card symbolizes emotions, intuition, and things like your reputation, how others feel about you. In this location, in the “future” column and the “somewhat within your knowledge/control” row, it likely indicates a period of introspection, and a need to make sure that people understand you for who you are. This echoes the card above it, which is focused on personal transformation.

8: Mountain

This card symbolizes obstacles and blockages.  In this position, in the “past” column and the “out of your knowledge/control” row, it is the background for the cards above it, elucidating how difficult your previous situation was, and how infertile it would have been to stay there. A cliff is not a good place to sow seeds.  Better to cut your losses and leave for greener pastures.

9: Lilies

This card symbolizes harmony, and support.  Located here in the “present” column and in the “out of your knowledge/control”, it indicates support from behind the scenes. It is the guiding light for your boat, and the water that holds you buoyant.  Someone or something is guiding your way and watching out for you as you make your transition.  It is not necessarily the same person/entity/thing that you must make a commitment to – the Ring sounds more like a mundane thing, and the Lilies appear to be referring to either fate itself or perhaps a god or guardian spirit.

10: Dog

This card symbolizes loyalty and reliability.  Situated here, in the “future” column and the “out of your knowledge/control”, it may be referring back to an entity supporting you, symbolized by the Lilies.  If it is just the force of fate, it’s still something you can rely on, as you complete the work of the cards above, delving into your own shadow and emotions to become you better self.

Overall:

Changes aren’t just coming: they’re here.  What you need to focus on is really making the most of it.  Aim high and aim for freedom.  Find that open door, and once you go through it, commit to the path and don’t turn back.  You may have some growing pains, but you’ll get through it and it will be worth it, because you’ve got support along the way.  Good luck!

 

[[Hedgefae’s response: “This is a beautiful, beautiful reading! Thank you so much! This confirms a lot of suspicions I’ve had about where my life is headed and what my next step is meant to be. This is everything I was looking for and more!”]]

As I get more comfortable with Lenormand, expect to see listings showing up in the Etsy shop. This particular reading spread will probably cost about $30.

Etsy Shop Update, Other Updates

Brief Updates…

Everything is now listed in the shop!  I repeat, everything is now listed in the shop!  😀

Also, I’ve figured out a better way to ship physical items, so shipping is now down to $6 instead of $8 (mostly, I’ve figured out how to use Etsy’s postage thing).

Glasreo and I have been doing a lot of in-person reiki recently, so if you are in the DC/MD/VA area and would like that thing, send us an email, please!  We can travel nights and weekends traffic permitting, but there’s no travel charge if you come to us (obviously).

 

Things in the works:

  • Probably more blogs on reiki adventures.  There are so many I could type up!
  • More tarot spreads in the shop for specific themes, like Spirit Communication, Deity Identification, etc (if you have a suggestion, please leave a comment below!)
  • Probably a Celtic Cross Spread because people seem to expect it
  • I’m getting pretty damn good with runes and as soon as I finish my current course of study, rune pulls will probably be up in the shop…
  • I’m starting to learn Ogham and Lenormand, because one can never learn too many forms of divination, right?  (Right!)
  • Glasreo is working on a lithomancy system of His Very Own, which is exciting, but may take a while…
  • Other stuff!  Probably!  Maybe we’ll vend a Pagan Pride Day in the fall!
Other Updates

Brief Update

Hello All!

I’ve been pretty sick lately and so haven’t updated here, apologies… I’m trying to catch up on things today.  This is going to be a sort of a list-post, so bear with me, okay?

Recently Gwdihŵ and I did another big-and-intense reiki healing session on another friend, but as that one was highly personal and centered around past traumas, we decided it was best not to post about it, even under a psuedonym.  This one was done as a gift to a friend in need, so no barter this time… though I think we have a paying customer in the works, and hopefully it will only take a few paying customers before we can afford our own travel massage table, so we can have people lie down (instead of sitting in comfy chairs).

The biggest thing to report, I suppose, is that we’ve submitted an application to vend Baltimore Faerie Faire this May.  We hope to offer quick reiki treatments and some gemstone jewelry – probably some empath shields (charged lava stone beads) and the like turned into bracelets as well.  If we’re accepted, I’ll need to make a ton of inventory before then, but that should be doable!  So fingers crossed and candles lit and here’s to hoping!

The next thing is sort of an upcoming thing… I have a lot of new pictures to add to the Etsy shop, and some of the listings will be changing, and I’ll be adding a new tarot deck, the Radiant Rider-Waite.  So be on the lookout for that!  I’ll probably make a post with a few pictures here, once I’m done.

And one more teaser: I’ve started crocheting a kokeshi-style Sekhmet icon.  I’ll post pictures and talk about that more once I’ve finished one!  It’s a pretty exciting project, and I think they’ll make create altar pieces if I can do a bunch of different deities – similar to the devotional bracelets.

And speaking of devotional bracelets, the one for Bast is still available in my shop, though I should probably whip up another one as that one sold.  And there’s a Sekhmet one in the works, though I need to get my hands on some tiger’s eye beads in a better shade of brown.

That’s all for now.  Thanks for following along and check back in soon!

~Réaltán~

Etsy Shop Update, Other Updates

A Basket Full of Updates

First, good news!  I’ve had a few Etsy sales (goodness it’s hard to start out in a crowded market), and the first three sales were people we didn’t know, yay, and also, they all left reviews, yay, and ALL THOSE REVIEWS ARE FIVE STARS, YAY!!!  Plus I have a couple more in the works, from both friends and acquaintances.  I’ve been running a tumblr coupon sale for 10% off, but so far I’ve only had one bite on that, and none of my promotion posts have gotten many notes.  I’ve got about 125 followers, but it really takes a few reblogs before a post takes off, and that hasn’t happened.  Probably I’d have better luck trying to circulate a layout post with my shop info on it, but I’ve not yet tried that.  (Also, for any blog readers who want the coupon, it’s “TUMBLWEEN”, and it’s good through November 5th.

Second, less-good news: we have not been accepted into the Gryphon’s Grove classes we applied to.  However, that was one path of many, and we are not discouraged.  Caroline Kenner did divination to select her students, and this class is not meant to have us in it.  Perhaps that’s for the better, though, as I still have a mental block about the term “shamanism” and I may not have been ready for the work (under that heading, I mean – I’m more than ready to meet and work with new guides).  There are other methods of working with spirits for healing, however, and Gwdihŵ will continue to learn from his guides as we do reiki, and will perhaps discover more guides in the process.

Third, I’ve used some of my proceeds from the Etsy shop to purchase an Oracle Deck, which will eventually end up in the shop as well.  It’s “The Wild Wisdom of the Fairy Oracle Deck”, by Lucy Cavendish (art by Selina Fenech).  I’m going to do daily pulls for a while until I get to know it better – probably 30 days or so – before I list it, though.  So far it seems to be pretty straightforward, talkative, and encouraging!  Here are some pictures:

faery oracle faery oracle 3

Fourth, I’ve been looking at threads and cord for the beads I posted about ages ago, and I’ve finally found one I like.  I ordered it and it arrived a week or so ago.  I’ve been playing with single strand or double strand, and different kinds of knotting between the beads, and I think I’ve found a knotting style I like… which means now all I need are some findings, and I can start putting beaded devotional jewelry in my shop!  I’ve been working a little bit on design, too, and as I finish items I will likely be posting them here.  But here’s a picture with all the different kind of knots, made with some loose beads (the knots I like best are the ones on that bottom strand, double overhand):

bead knotting

Fifth, I’m leading my first group ritual on October 25th!  It’s a Kemetic execration rite, honoring Bast and Sekhmet as the Eyes of Ra.  I’ve written up most of the prayers and outline, and I’ll post it here when finished.  I’m a little nervous, but I’ve got some good people as part of the ritual team, and I think the work we’re doing is really necessary for this time of year. Hopefully everything will go as planned, or as close to that as possible!

And that’s it for your pile of updates!

~Réaltán