Thursday, July 29, 2010

Your Magical Name

Your Magical Name Cover Why a Magical Name?:
Ah, the magical name. So many people find wicca and decide right off the bat that they’re going to name themselves Lady Such-and-Such or Lord Whatsis. Go to a pagan event and you’ll meet more fifteen-year-old Lady Morganas than you can shake a stick at. And it’s virtually guaranteed that within about three months, Lady Morgana will decide her magical name, sometimes called a craft name, is really supposed to be Starfluffle or Moongypsy, and she’ll change it.

In fact, she’ll probably change it two to three times a year.

The Name-of-the-Month Club:
This odd phenomenon, known as the Name-of-the-Month Syndrome, happens most often because the person in question hasn’t taken the time to research and learn, which is crucial to finding the right magical name.

A magical name is unique to the practitioner, and there are several ways to find yours. When you find the right name, you’ll keep it for a long time. In some traditions, it‘s customary to wait until you‘ve studied a year and a day before claiming your magical name. Some Pagans have two magical names -- one which they use in public and one which is known only to the gods and members of the person’s coven.

Think Long-Range:
One method by which people sometimes find their magical name is to simply choose something they like. A problem with this method is that what we like on one day, we may find silly a year down the road. If you’re going to choose a name based on whether it sounds cool or not, stop and think about it. What is it about the name that appeals to you? Ten years from now, are still going to feel comfortable saying, “Hi, I‘m Fairypuddle,” when you meet a new person?

Names with Meaning:
Choose a name not only for its sound, but its attributes as well. For example, someone wishing to convey strength in their name might include “oak“ or “iron“ as part of their moniker. A person who is highly creative might select a name that reflects their art or craft. You may want to choose a name based rooted in folklore or mythology. Many people include the name of an animal that resonates with them. A cautionary note here: in the Pagan community, certain animals pop up all the time. You’ll meet two dozen Ravens and just as many Cats, but it’s unlikely you’ll encounter anyone calling himself Wombat or Penguin.

Names to Avoid:
Another bit of advice -- generally, the titles Lord and Lady are reserved for people who are elders or have a significant amount of leadership experience under their belt. To name oneself Lady So-and-So without any credentials is considered presumptuous by many Pagans. Likewise, in many traditions it’s seen as hubris to give oneself the name of a deity. You may want to choose a name that indicates your dedication to a god or goddess, but don’t co-opt their names. It’s just rude. If you're a dedicant to Apollo, don't call yourself Master Apollo, call yourself something like Apollonius instead.

Using Your Birth Number:
Another popular method of finding a magical name is to choose one that corresponds with your birth number. To find your birth number, begin by adding the digits of your birth date.

If your birthday was September 1, 1966, you would start with the numbers 911966 = 9 + 1 + 1 + 9 + 6 + 6 = 32.

Now take those two numbers (3 and 2), and bring it down to a single digit: 3 + 2 = 5. That number -- in this case, 5 -- is your birth number.

Use the grid below to find a name that corresponds to the number 5, by calculating the sum of the corresponding letters.

1 = A, J, S

2 = B, K, T

3 = C, L, U

4 = D, M, V

5 = E, N, W

6 = F, O, X

7 = G, P, Y

8 = H, Q, Z

9 = I, R

Let’s say you’ve decide you like the name Willow. Using the letters in “Willow” you would take the numbers 5 + 9 + 3 + 3 + 6 + 5 = 32. From there, 3 + 2 = 5. If the name you like doesn’t match your birth numbers, try some creative or alternate spellings to see what happens.

A Gift from the Gods:
In some cases, you may be fortunate enough to have your new name bestowed upon you by a god or goddess. In these instances, you may encounter someone in a dream or a vision who tells you, “Your name is Such-and-such.” While you may choose to add to it or come up with a variation on it later, if this happens to you, accept the name as the gift that it is.

Whatever method you end up using, think carefully before you finalize your new name. While it’s okay to change your name later on as you evolve spiritually, changing your name every few weeks or every time you see a new episode of “Charmed” is probably not the best course of action. Find the name that is right for you -- and when it IS the right one, you will know.

Books You Might Enjoy:

Anonymous - Meditation Of The Four Magickal Weapons
Jarl Fossum - Seth In The Magical Texts
Anonymous - The Mystical Qabbalah
Kenneth Grant - Magical Revival
Aninymous - The Angelical Alphabet

Witches And The Book Of Shadows

Witches And The Book Of Shadows Cover The book of shadows is a Witches Bible, a place where spells, rituals, and often inspirations are written. Traditionally most Witches hand write everything into their BoS, however in the high tech age of computers there are many modern witches who put their entire BoS on disc. There are even programs designed to format your computer Book of Shadows. Many Books of Shadow are handed down from past generations. I would recommend that if you are just starting one, you choose a very special and large journal, hard cover, or hand crafted wood, leather, or other sturdy material, rather than a spiral notebook, or writing tablet. This book should be planned with the intent of it being around for a long time and used often.

The BOS usually starts out with a Title Page and may be called something as simple as, My Book of Shadows or something more creative like, My Triple Moon Book of Inspiration. You should include a Dedication page dedicating your work to whichever Goddess, and/or God you recognize, and a Blessing page where you put a simple blessing spell for your Book of Shadows and all the writings within.

It might be a good idea to include a line or two about your book being invisible to non-believers, or some type protection, that will prevent ill events from snoops.

I highly recommend a table of contents, or index section, as you will find it difficult to locate a needed piece of information later on, when your book is full. A section on your chosen path, or your personal philosophy is a good addition.

Your Book of Shadows will usually contain a list of all celebration rituals, especially the Sabats, which are the major turnings of the year. Also you will probably include all the esbats and moon phases of the year. You may want to include a section for celebrating births, deaths, handfastings (marriages), and even add rituals for blessing a new home, a business or a new job. With all these special events, there are correspondences that go with them, such as deities, gems and minerals, herbs, oils, colors, astrological symbols, and planetary influences. As with most celebrations there will be certain foods, decorations, ect.

Books You Might Enjoy:

Gerald Gardner - The Garnerian Book Of Shadows
Idres Shah - The Book Of Power
Sasha Fierce - The Book Of Shadows

How And Why I Became A Witch

How And Why I Became A Witch Cover I created this lens to allow others to peek into the life of a typical American witch, what we do, what we are and basic beliefs. I certainly do not speak for other witches, their beliefs or opinions. We are all individuals just like anyone else. I am trying to explain (not defend) witchcraft, some facts about real witches, discuss "wanna-be witches," black and white magick, and more. I also feature recommended products, tools, music, links of interest and other information. To learn how to perform your own spells, whether you're a witch or not (it doesn't matter) visit this guide to spellcrafting for witches or non-witches.
I am a solitary witch. I am not Wiccan, per se. I have a few different beliefs but many are similar to Wicca. I really don't label myself into any particular denomination but the closest to any would be Traditional. It has taken me several years to truly believe I am most likely a Natural Witch. This doesn't make me bad or good, it just makes me who I am. This is who I was born to be.

Please feel free to question, comment or share your own stories in the comment section. Recommend your own witch, pagan or spiritual links there, too. I'd love to hear from you, witch or non-witch!

Books You Might Enjoy:

Michael Magee - Robin Hood And The Witches
Anton Szandor Lavey - The Satanic Rituals
Howard Phillips Lovecraft - Cults Of Cthulhu
Ann Moura - Green Witchcraft

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Good Witch Or Bad Witch

Good Witch Or Bad Witch Cover There are many types of witches. That is a fact. However, most witches do not use their powers or abilities for inflicting harm unto others. This is a very common misconception. A large amount of witches use their abilities to aid others in not only soul-searching tasks but to rid and teach how to rid negative energies from one's life. We are often judged as worshipers of a "devil" or "Satan." That is a big contradiction to most of us. A majority of witches do not even believe in a "God of the Devils" aka "Satan." However, we are often scrutinized for stating this because some will say (just as in the olden times) "If you believe in the devil, you are a worshiper...If you say you don' are more susceptible to his powers." It is a TOTAL catch 22 for all witches. That was also the method used in the witch Trials.

One suggestion: Please don't ask a witch if he or she "is a good witch or a bad witch." That is just the same as asking a Christian if "they are a good Christian or a bad Christian." Besides, you may get an answer you didn't expect!

Books You Might Enjoy:

Zoroaster - The Chaldean Oracles
Ro Winstedt - Shaman Saiva And Sufi
Carl Mccolman - The Well Read Witch
Anonymous - Witchcraft A Guide To Magic

Do Witches Really Cast Hexes

Do Witches Really Cast Hexes Cover People commonly personify witches as evil and all they do is curse and hex others. wiccans are strictly opposed to hexes and curses. Traditional witches (or "Trad Witches") do not have limitations. However, if the thought arises of casting a hex or curse we must ask ourselves if it ethical and completely necessary. Any witch will tell you that if it is regarding defense of loved ones and family the answer is often yes. On the other hand, if it relates to using magick against someone because they cut you off on the highway, then for the majority, the answer is no. See the section in this lens "Black & White Magick" for more on this. Also, for more information about magick, the natural powers of the universe, how to do spells and much more, visit Modern-Witchcraftand especially, Guide for Spells and How To's About Safely Using Magick for Success.

Books You Might Enjoy:

Jarl Fossum - Seth In The Magical Texts
Lau Soon Wah - The Powerful And Deadly Spells Of The Javanese
Julius Evola - Against The Neopagans
Anonymous - The Emerald Tablet Of Hermes

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Witches Misogyny And Patriarchy

Witches Misogyny And Patriarchy Cover The persecution of witches reached its zenith at a time when Christianity's attitudes against sex had long since turned into full-blown misogyny. It is amazing how celibate men became obsessed with the sexuality of women. As it is stated in Malleus Maleficarum: "All witchcraft comes from carnal lust, which is in women insatiable." Another section describes how witches were known to "...collect male organs in great numbers, as many as twenty or thirty members together, and put them in a bird's nest."

Evidently they were not entirely stingy with their collections -- there is the story of a man who went to a witch to have his lost penis restored: "She told the afflicted man to climb a certain tree, and that he might take which he like out of a nest in which there were several members. And when he tried to take a big one, the witch said: You must not take that one; adding, because it belonged to a parish priest."

And some people say that religion isn't really all about wishful thinking!

These sentiments were nothing unique or unusual -- indeed, they are a result of centuries of mean-spirited sexual pathology on the part of church theologians. The philosopher Boethius, for example, wrote in The Consolation of Philosophy that "Woman is a temple built upon a sewer." Later, in the tenth century, Odo of Cluny stated "To embrace a woman is to embrace a sack of manure."

Women were regarded as impediments to true spirituality and union with God, which helps explain why investigators focused on women more than men. The church had a long-standing prejudice against women, and this was given vent when the doctrine of devil worship was emphasized as an enemy which the church had to confront and destroy. This animus hasn't entirely disappeared even today. Women aren't persecuted and tortured, but they are deliberately kept out of positions of authority and responsibility reserved exclusively for men.

Books You Might Enjoy:

William Blake - The Marriage Of Heaven And Hell
Vovim Baghie - The Grand Satanic Ritual
Walter Scott - Letters On Demonology And Witchcraft
Frater Fp - Sigils In Theory And Practice

Monday, July 26, 2010

Book Of The Dead Mystery And Secrets

Book Of The Dead Mystery And Secrets
The "Sticker album of the Washed up" is an illustrated papyrus scroll placed in the sepulcher as a labor-intensive for the at the last fashionable his decisive trip sad the "Back up Mud" in the after life. The Sticker album of the Washed up is a byzantine of ancient Egypt's oldest and supreme strategic fervent texts and magical spells. A number of of the writings come from Egypt's Pre-dynastic group, and were 4,000 being old fashionable the time of Jesus. The Sticker album of the Washed up is not a book as we know it, but rolls of papyrus that manipulate a book of spells, incantations, prayers, hymns, and rituals that were written by the priests on top of Egypt's longing history.

The sundry copies of the Sticker album of the Washed up manipulate about 200 fresh spells that carry been truth point expel so that, for case, any spell matter with "the thing not antithetical the at the last" would be found in point 30. The Sticker album of the Washed up evolved from the PYRAMID TEXTS and Coffin TEXTS. Measure the Pyramid Texts were magical spells for the pharaohs solely, the Coffin Texts could be hand-me-down by anyone who could stark to carry a tomb carved or tinted with magical inscriptions. At the end of the day display were too assorted spells to fit on the tomb, and the Sticker album of the Washed up was the deviousness to the thought.

Now all of the magical spells could abstract the at the last, for they could be written on papyrus and placed in the sepulcher with the mummy. Scribes chubby papyrus rolls with spells for protection as well as guidelines on how to acquit yourself and how to make the shape work anew in the neighboring world. Unevenly, the Sticker album of the Washed up had four sections:

1. How to protect the shape in the tomb;2. How to make the trip to the Netherworld;3. How to permission the caution of the gods; 4. How to plunk in the neighboring world, after having been accepted by the gods.

A propos 200 fresh spells or chapters awaken in the Sticker album of the Washed up, but they awaken in no defined order. Books written in the north or the south of Egypt had a fastidious system. The actual appoint of the Sticker album of the Washed up is "The leaving forth by day," which strength refer to the at the last leaving forth to the Netherworld. The Egyptians were faint-hearted of the night, and it would carry considered an advantage to make the trip fashionable the day. Whatever the appoint actually inevitable, it irrefutably was a counsel to death.

Period The ancient Egyptians did not say death point in the right direction, but relatively had assorted euphemisms or names for death and the at the last. For case, in the same way as the west stock of the Nile was interrelated with death (the sun died display every day, and the dead were hollow in cemeteries on the west contiguous), if someone died, it was invented that he "went west." The dead were called "Westerners" or "Candid of Hole."

Assorted of the Theban versions of the Sticker album of the Washed up manipulate hymns to the gods, particularly to OSIRIS, the god of the dead.An edited case of the hymn to Osiris, from the papyrus of Ani (a notch in the Eighteenth Stock), reads:

"Respect of Re in the function of he appears in the eastern horizon of the Sky."

"Notice, Osiris, the notch of the divine gifts of all the gods, Ani. He says, consent to thee who has come as Kheperi, the god of years who is the dramatist of the gods... May he commit pleasurable and power as one who is dead. The living foundation [of Ani] goes forth to see Horus of the two horizons, the foundation of Osiris, the notch of Ani, true of voice before Osiris..."

This hymn of consent to Osiris mentions two strategic mug of the deceased: the BA, which has been translated as "foundation," and the KA, which was a kind of spiritual double. The Egyptians assumed a faction had five fresh elements: the physical shape, the shadow, the name, and supreme strategic, the ba and the ka. The ba was represented as a bird with the frivolity of the at the last, and it seemed to come featuring in define years solely after the faction died. The ba was essential for the deceased's years in the Netherworld.

"In this leg of the Sticker album of the Washed up through for the priest Nes-Min, the actor who drew the vignettes did not workclosely with the notch who forged the text, so the illustrations do not equivalent the accompanying hieroglyphs."

The ka was a kind of transfer double of the at the last that attractive a place to gatehouse. Its first opportunity was the leftovers, but in command the shape was defeated or kaput, assorted Egyptians were hollow with one or finer ka statues carved in their picture so the ka could subsist within the statue. The Egyptians were approximately encyclopedic in their corporation with the sundry parts of the shape. The Sticker album of the Washed up seems to carry been written by priests who drew up a list of every shape part that would be attractive in the neighboring world and plus fashioned a spell to protect it, as in the following examples:

"The Chapter of Not Permitting the Head of a Man to Be Cut Off in the Netherworld."I am the excellent one, son of the excellent one. I am fire, son of fire, whose frivolity was truth to him after it was cut off. His frivolity shall not be under enemy control outdated from him..."

Following the Sticker album of the Washed up first appeared in the New Grandeur it was considered essential to anyone seeking immortality by resurrecting in the Netherworld. This belief in the Sticker album of the Washed up continued well featuring in the group of Greek twine of Egypt. The texts themselves remained close at hand unmoved for finer than a thousand being.

No be suspicious of assorted who purchased copies of the Sticker album of the Washed up could not read them, but that was not of excellent corporation. Having the magical words that would guide them powerfully to the Netherworld was the strategic thing.

Sources: Egyptian Folklore A to Z, Wikipedia and Loads of Sources

Amalgamated ARTICLE:

* The Sticker album of Gates in the Egyptian Folklore
* What's the Enigma about the Pyramids of Giza ?
* What are Nazca Defiance
* Cut Circles, Chronicles and Theories
* Sea of the Devil: Dragon Triangle
* Initiation Lucid Dreaming, The Memorable Way
* Following Large Black Holes Smash

"Do you so this article? occupy "Property" and "Fancy" it to continue the repair :)..."

Witch Hunts Today

Witch Hunts Today Cover Few people are aware that witch-hunts still claim thousands of lives every year, especially in the countries of sub-Saharan Africa, and above all in South Africa.

Witch-hunts in South Africa have become "a national scourge," according to Phumele Ntombele-Nzimande of the country's Commission on Gender Equality. (Quoted in Gilbert Lewthwaite, "South Africans go on witch hunts," Baltimore Sun, September 27, 1998.) The phenomenon is centered in the country's poverty-stricken Northern Province, where "legislators counted 204 witchcraft-related killings [from 1985-95] ... Police counted 312 for the same period. Everybody agreed both numbers were gross underestimates." (Neely Tucker, "Season of the Witch Haunts Africa," The Toronto Star, August 1, 1999.) In 1996 The Observer (UK) reported that "the precise statistics are not known, but the deaths from witch-burning episodes number in the hundreds each year and the trend appears to be on the rise." (David Beresford, "Ancient superstitions, fear of witches cast spell on new nation," reprinted in The Ottawa Citizen, June 18, 1996.)

As with its European predecessor, witch-hunting in South Africa is closely tied not only to prevailing superstitions, but to socio-economic pressures, natural disasters, and personal jealousies. In the Northern Province, "among the poorly educated rural residents, traditional healers and clairvoyants claiming supernatural powers hold broad sway. And hunger, poverty, and unemployment can create jealousies that can quickly turn to anger and vengeance." (Lewthwaite, "South Africans go on witch hunts.") Likewise, Peter Alexander reports that "In a region of intense poverty and little education, villagers are quick to blame any adverse act of fate on black magic." These traditional tendencies have been exacerbated by a recent hysteria (extending to Kenya and Zimbabwe) over the very real phenomenon of "ritual killings related to witchcraft," which "include the removal of organs and limbs from the victims -- the genitals, hands or the head, all of which are believed to bring good luck." (Alexander, "'Witches' get protection from superstitious mobs," The Daily Telegraph, May 26, 1997.) Such ritual murders often bring "retribution" against innocents accused of witchcraft.

The intensity of the persecution and vigilantism in South Africa has reached such levels that no fewer than ten villages have been established in the Northern Province, populated exclusively by accused "witches" whose lives are at risk in their home communities. One such settlement, Helena, counted among its residents 62-year-old Esther Rasesemola, who "was accused in 1990 of being a witch after lightning struck her village":

A group of people visited the Inkanga [village witch-doctor] to see who was responsible. When they returned, it was my brother-in-law who told the rest of the village that I was responsible. He owed me money and I think he did it to get rid of me because he did not want to pay the money back. People in the village became convinced I was a witch. They came to my house at night and burnt it down and took all my belongings. Then they put me in a truck and drove me to a deserted place and dropped me off with my husband and my three children. They told me never to come back to the village or they would kill me. My husband died two years after we were expelled. My children have gone away and now I have nothing. I don't believe in witchcraft. It is just superstitious belief. (Quoted in Alexander, "'Witches' get protection.")

Gilbert Lewthwaite of the Baltimore Sun described the case of Violet Dangale, a 42-year-old woman who "was driven from her home 30 months ago by relatives and neighbours who accused her of being a witch growing rich from the work of zombies, as the 'living dead' are known." Now she was "penniless and in fear for her life," living in Tshilamba, another of the refuges for accused witches. Her "main accuser was her uncle. He first accused her father of using zombies to enrich himself. Then he turned on her, suggesting that she enjoyed her share of the family's wealth through witchcraft. ... As the accusations and threats grew stronger, the Dangale family fled their homes in Dzimauli." "They said I was a witch," Dangale told Lewthwaite. "I don't know anything about witchcraft. I don't believe in zombies. Since I was born, I never saw a zombie." (Lewthwaite, "South Africans go on witch hunts.")

Both of these women were luckier than 65-year-old Linah Seabi, "a sorghum beer brewer ... [who] was charged with killing an elderly woman with a poisonous potion. More than 200 villagers stormed Seabi's house in late May [1991], beat her and burned her to death with straw thatch from the roof of her house." (Nina Shapiro, "Wave of witch hunts sweeps South African countryside," The Toronto Star, September 19, 1991.) In December 1998, "Francina Sebatsana, 75, and Desia Mamafa, 55 ... were burned to death on pyres of wood in the village of Wydhoek," in the Northern Province, for alleged witchcraft. "Eleven men, ages 21 to 50" were charged with her murder. (Lewthwaite, "South Africans go on witch hunts.")

The gendering of the European witch-hunts appears to be closely duplicated in the South African case. As the above accounts suggest, "traditionally, it is women who are accused of witchcraft" (Alexander, "'Witches' get police protection"). Especially vulnerable are "defenceless elderly women, against whom the actions are taken without resistance," according to Northern Province Premier Ngoako Ramatlhodi. "That women most often are the victims of witch hunts stems from attitudes toward gender," writes Nina Shapiro of The Toronto Star:

"In our culture, men go out in the afternoon, women remain in the home," said Russell Molefe, a local journalist. People believe women sit at home concocting potions, he said. Older women are suspected, according to Lebowa police lieutenant Mohlabi Tlomatsana, simply because they are alive. "People will think 'Why has she not died? Probably because she is a witch.'" (Shapiro, "Wave of witch hunts.")

However, as in the European case-study, "these days almost a third of victims of men" (Alexander, "'Witches' get police protection.") Nonetheless, approximately 30 percent of accused witches are male -- reflecting men's prominence as nangas, or traditional healers. Anton La Guardia describes the case of "Credo Mutwa, southern Africa's best-known practising healer ... [who] said he had been accosted by a mob and stabbed several times. He lay bleeding on the ground and waited helplessly to die as his assailants poured petrol and prepared to set it alight. Mr. Mutwa ... said he was saved by the same superstition which was about to claim his life. 'A young man shouted, "His ghost will haunt you." They vanished, leaving me like a fish on dry land.'" (La Guardia, "South Africa's non-political witch-hunts," The Daily Telegraph, September 9, 1998.)

As in all these campaigns, it is difficult to assign particular responsibility for fuelling the anti-witch hysteria. Although they may themselves be accused of witchcraft, it is also generally the nangas who are called upon to point out "suspicious" persons who can be accused as witches: according to one South African police sergeant, "Generally, if people believe there is a witch in their village, they will consult the [witch-doctor]. He or she will then 'sniff out' the witch. The person who is accused will then be killed or ordered to leave the village." (Alexander, "'Witches' get police protection.") Village males usually carry out the murders and other acts of terrorism. But as in the European case-study, patterns of gossip and rumour are central to the process -- and to shielding the perpetrators from justice. South African police inspector Matome Mamabolo reports: "If someone is accused of murdering a witch, the community tends to support them by supplying money for an advocate when the case comes to court. There is a solidarity there -- after all, that person is accused of ridding the village of a witch." (Quoted in Alexander, "'Witches' get police protection.")

Much the same pattern is evident in Tanzania, Zimbabwe, and Kenya, although the gender of the victims may be more even. In August 1999, Paul Harris of the Sunday Telegraph reported that

Lynch mobs have killed hundreds of Tanzanians whom they accuse of witchcraft as black magic hysteria sweeps East Africa. Most of the usually elderly victims have been beaten or burnt to death by gangs of youths. Some old women have been singled out simply because they have red eyes -- regarded as a sign of sorcery by their assailants. The condition is actually caused by years of toiling in smoky kitchens cooking family meals. ... Police say 357 suspected witches have been killed in the past 18 months, but the Ministry of Home Affairs believes that the true figure is much higher. A departmental survey said as many as 5,000 people were lynched between 1994 and 1998. (Paul Harris, "Hundreds burnt to death in Tanzanian witch-hunt," Sunday Telegraph, August 22, 1999.)

In Zimbabwe, as in neighbouring South Africa, the witch-hunts also seem closely related to "the black market demand for human body parts, which are used in making evil potions." The upsurge in such practices, the ritual murders they require, and the vengefulness that results against accused "witches," are all linked to the country's precipitous economic decline. "It's obvious the cause is economic," says Gordon Chavanduka, head of the Zimbabwe National Traditional Healers Association (which counts 50,000 members). "The worse the economy gets, the more political tension there is in society, the more frustrated and frightened people get. They turn to witchcraft to gain riches or to hurt their enemies." (Neely Tucker, "Season of the witch haunts Africa," The Toronto Star, August 1, 1999.)

In the Kenyan case, as was also true in a handful of European countries, the witch-hunts appear predominantly to target males. A British sociologist, J.F.M. Middleton, records the conviction of the Lugbara tribe of Kenya that

a witch is a man [emphasis added] who perverts a mystical power of kinship for his own selfish ends and is therefore an evil person. Witches in general are given both physical and moral attributes: a witch has greyish skin, red eyes, a physical deformity; he may travel about upside down; he is bad tempered, secretive, petty and jealous; he is thought to practice incest and cannibalism. The distinction between witchcraft, a mystical activity, and sorcery, the use of material objects, was widespread in eastern Africa, Dr. Middleton said. When, as in Lugbara, the basic principles of organization were unilineal descent and seniority by generation it would be expected that men were believed to practise witchcraft, whereas women should have the less important role of sorcerer. ("How to recognize witches," The Times [UK], September 5, 1997.)

In Kenya in 1993, killings among the Gusii tribe were occurring at the rate of one a week. "In most cases ... village mobs several hundred strong locked the victims inside thatch-roof houses and set them on fire. ... According to tribal elders, the Gusii have always executed people found to be witches. Sanslaus Anunda, a 99-year-old tribal elder, said that during his youth, villagers had a foolproof method for determining guilt. The most respected men in the community would call a meeting. Next, they would smear local herbs on the hands of the suspect and that of a second, innocent man [emphasis added]. Both men would be ordered to dip their hands into a pot of boiling water, then return in five days. If the suspect was a witch, burns would appear on his hands. However, Anunda insists, the innocent man's hands would remain unscarred." (Tammerlin Drummong, "Kenya: Dozens die in witch hunts," The Ottawa Citizen, August 28, 1993.)

A trend of predominantly male victimization may also be evident in West Africa, where a bizarre wave of accusations of "penis-snatching" has come to light. The Reuters news agency reported in 1996 that "eight men in Accra, Ghana, were accused of using witchcraft to snatch penises. Their motivation was allegedly to return the sexual organs in return for cash. Mobs attacked them ... two died and six were seriously injured. The police examined all the alleged victims and found their genitals intact. ... [But] the 'victims' believed that sorcerers only had to touch them to make the genitals shrink or disappear completely." ("'Witches' steal penises in Ghana," Reuters dispatch, January 17, 1996.) D. Trull reported in 1997 that "the killings of alleged 'penis snatchers'" had been reported "along the west coast from Cameroon to Nigeria." (See Trull, "Witches Protection Program".)

Books You Might Enjoy:

Phil Hine - Aspects Of Evocation
Aleister Crowley - The Sixth Chakra Of The Human Body
Richard Johnson - The Zodiac Stellar Stories
Gerald Gardner - Witchcraft Today

Witch Hunting Panic And Torture

Witch Hunting Panic And Torture Cover Witch-hunting could be endemic or epidemic. Its dynamics varied. Small panics (fewer than 20 victims) tended to occur in villages worried about maleficium. Their victims were often poor, obnoxious persons whose removal the rest of the community applauded.

If small panics fed on long-smoldering fears about neighbors, large ones exploded without warning, killing people of all classes and conditions and rupturing social bonds. The worst examples of this were in Germany, where unlimited use of torture (in defiance of imperial law) produced an ever-expanding wave of denunciations. To object was to court death.

Large witch-panics started with the usual obscure suspects and worked up the social scale to prosperous citizens, reputable matrons, high-ranking clerics, town officials, and even judges. The longer a panic lasted, the higher was the proportion of male and wealthy victims.

According to the Dutch Jesuit Cornelius van Loos, confiscations from suspected witches in large panics could "coin gold and silver from human blood," Youngsters were legally old enough to burn as soon as they could distinguish "gold from an apple." Children as young as nine were burned in Wurzburg, including the bishop's nephew, and boys ages three and four were imprisoned as Satan's catamites.

Some of the German trials were marred by collusion, bribes, and rape. Unspeakable tortures were routine -- 17 different kinds were authorized by "the Saxon lawgiver," Benedikt Carpzov, during the 17th century. Confessing "without torture" in Germany meant without torture that drew blood. Nearly all who underwent this broke, even the blameless.

Yet witches sometimes did turn themselves in and confess spontaneously, the equivalent of today's "suicide by police." The same melancholy, frustration, and despair that they claimed had driven them into the devil's arms brought them willingly to the stake. They had apparently come to believe the wish-fulfillment fantasies of pleasure and revenge enacted in the theaters of their minds. Nevertheless, they still hoped to save their souls through pain.

A few brave men spoke up for justice. In 1563, Johann Weyer, a Protestant court physician, drew attention to the cruelty of the trials and the mental incompetence of many of the accused. English country gentleman Reginald Scot mocked witchcraft as popish nonsense in 1584. In 1631, the Jesuit Friedrich von Spec, confessor to witches burned at Mainz, proclaimed them innocent victims. Van Loos, witness to the horrors of witchcraft trials at Trier, had his manuscript confiscated in 1592 before it could be published and was himself imprisoned and banished.

Ironically, a Spanish inquisitor named Alonso Salazar y Frias mounted the most dramatic challenge to witch-hunting. In 1609, a panic among French Basques in the western Pyrenees on the Bay of Biscay spilled over into the Navarra region in Spain, where six accused witches went to the stake. But Salazar, who had been a judge in that trial, became skeptical as the panic widened to engulf 1,800 suspects, 1,500 of them children. Basque witches' confessions included such incredible details as familiars in the form of costumed toads that child-witches herded with little crooks during sabbats.

Salazar cross-checked testimony, had supposed magic substances tested, and applied logic to conclude that the alleged witches were simply an artifact of witch-hunting. "There were neither witches nor bewitched until they were talked and written about," he reported in 1610. With stubborn practice, Salazar wrested a decision from his superiors that freed the accused in 1614. The Spanish Inquisition never executed another witch; nor did it permit secular authorities to do so after an outbreak in Catalonia that saw more than 300 witches hanged between 1616 and 1619. What could have erupted into Europe's worst witch-panic was extinguished by one man.

Books You Might Enjoy:

Max Heindel - Teachings Of An Initiate
Richard Johnson - The Zodiac Stellar Stories
Stephen William Hawking - Space And Time Warps

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Witch Hunting Multitude Of Myths

Witch Hunting Multitude Of Myths Cover Historians have now realized that witch-hunting was not primarily a medieval phenomenon. It peaked in the 17th century, during the rationalist age of Descartes, Newton, and St. Vincent de Paul. Persecuting suspected witches was not an elite plot against the poor; not was practicing witchcraft a mode of peasant resistance. Catholics and Protestants hunted witches with comparable vigor. Church and state alike tried and executed them. It took more than pure Reason to end the witch craze.

Nor were witches secret pagans serving an ancient Triple Goddess and Horned God, as the neopagans claim. In fact, no witch was ever executed for worshipping a pagan deity. Matilda Gage's estimate of nine million women burned is more than 200 times the best current estimate of 30,000 to 50,000 killed during the 400 years from 1400 to 1800 -- a large number but no Holocaust. And it wasn't all a burning time. Witches were hanged, strangled, and beheaded as well. Witch-hunting was not woman-hunting: At least 20 percent of all suspected witches were male. Midwives were not especially targeted; nor were witches liquidated as obstacles to professionalized medicine and mechanistic science.

This revised set of facts should not entirely comfort Catholics, however. Catholics have been misled -- at times deliberately misled -- about the Church's role in the witch-hunts by apologists eager to present the Church as innocent of witches' blood so as to refute the Enlightenment theory that witch-burning was almost entirely a Catholic phenomenon. Catholics should know that the thinking that set the great witch-hunt in motion was developed by Catholic clerics before the Reformation.

But the great witch-hunt was nonetheless remarkably slow in coming. Many cultures around the world believed for millennia -- and still believe -- in witches. In typical folklore, past and present, witches are night-flying evildoers who inflict harm on others by supernatural means, such as curses, the evil eye, and magic substances. Witchcraft is usually thought of as an innate power, unlike sorcery, whose magical spells must be learned. What Christianity uniquely added to those traditional beliefs was Satan. God's enemies were said to join Satan's band of demons through a pact and worship him at monstrous bacchanals called "sabbats," where they parodied the liturgy.

The Church inherited Roman and Germanic laws regarding maleficent magic, laws that treated witchcraft as a crime. But to St. Augustine, concrete witchcraft consisted of idolatry and illusion rather than harm to others. Following Augustine, an Anonymous ninth-century text, Canon Episcopi, became part of the Church's canon law, declaring that belief in the reality of night-flying witches was heresy because there was no such thing as an actual witch. Although the idolatry and heresy associated with witchcraft resided only in the will, not in actual deeds, they were nevertheless sinful, Augustine wrote. Punishment was in order -- but not burning.

The High Middle Ages of the twelfth and 13th centuries saw the bloody suppression of heretics, notably the Cathars in Provence. Measures against Jews, magicians, and sexual deviants also grew harsher. These groups were associated with a stereotyped set of blasphemies, orgies, and outrages, including infanticide and cannibalism. Starting in 1232, the papal Inquisition dispatched roving specialists to detect and punish heretics outside existing legal systems.

Then, the idea that witchcraft was a reality rather than a heretical illusion suddenly made a comeback. The inquisitors who had cut their teeth on heretics were devouring accused witches as well by the end of the Middle Ages. This was not simply a matter of shifting scapegoats to suit market demand. In a society that feared supernatural menaces working through human conspiracies, the sinister folk figure of the esoterically schooled magician apparently fused with that of the petty village wise-woman or cunning man to create the new phenomenon of the diabolical witch.

After the first wisps of this change in the late 14th century, the flames burst forth around 1425 in the Savoy region, in what is now southeast France, and in the canton of Valais in Switzerland, near the borders of France and Italy. About 500 more witch trials followed before the Reformation began in 1517.

Books You Might Enjoy:

Richard Alan Miller - The Magical And Ritual Use Of Herbs
Edna Kenton - The Book Of Earths
Michael Johnstone - The Ultimate Encyclopedia Of Spells

Witch Hunts And Persecution In America

Witch Hunts And Persecution In America Cover As most Americans know, witch hunts also affected the American colonies. The Salem witch trials pursued the Massachusetts Puritans have entered American consciousness as being much more then just the killing of witches. They, like the trials of Europe, have become a symbol. In our case, the witch trials have become a symbol of what can go wrong when mobs of ignorant people go crazy, especially when egged on by just as ignorant and/or power hungry leaders.

The Salem story began in 1692 when a few girls, who had become friendly with a slave woman named Tituba, began acting very strangely -- hysterical screaming, falling into convulsions, barking like dogs, etc. Soon other girls began acting in a similar manner and of course they all must have been possessed by demons. Three woman, including Tituba, were promptly accused of witchcraft. The result was much like the European experience, with a chain-reaction of confessions, denouncements, and more arrests.

In an effort to help combat the witch menace, courts relaxed traditional rules of evidence and procedure -- after all, witches are a terrible menace and must be stopped. In place of the normal rules and methods, the courts used what was common among Inquisitors in Europe -- scouring the womens' bodies for marks, numb spots, etc. Also accepted were "spectral sources" of evidence -- if someone had a vision of a woman being a witch, that was good enough for the judges.

The people who were mostly killed were not those who submitted quickly and obediently to authorities. Only those who were defiant or hostile were put to death. If you admitted being a witch and repented, you had a very good chance of living. If you denied being a witch and insisted that you had rights which must be acknowledged, you were on a quick path to execution. Your chances were also bad if you were a woman -- especially if you were an older, deviant, troublesome or somehow disorderly woman.

In the end, nineteen people were executed, two died in prison and one man was pressed to death under rocks. This is a better record than what we see in Europe, but that isn't saying very much. The religious and political authorities clearly used the witch trials to impose their own ideas of order and righteousness upon the local populace. As in Europe, violence was a tool used by religion and religious people to enforce uniformity and conformity in the face of dissent and social disorder.

Books You Might Enjoy:

Mira Ray - Minerals And Gems In Indian Alchemy
Anonymous - Protection Of Space
Gabor Klaniczay - Witchcraft Mythologies And Persecutions

Saturday, July 24, 2010

What Is The Meaning Of Om In Yoga

What Is The Meaning Of Om In Yoga

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In Hindu belief, the tough, multi-layered hum of 'om' hearkens back to the tiny the cosmos was inherent. Past informal remedy, it includes 3 untie noises that mix during one. Frequently chanted at the beginning and end of yoga athletics classes, 'om' assists extract and canal the forethought for mind-calming athletics and brings the man during alignment with complete consciousness.

The Objective Of Yoga

In its purest pleasant, the haul over the coals of yoga is thought to give particular and conceited man significance to allow it to achieve union with infinite, complete significance. The Upanishads, which are sacred Hindu texts in print in Sanskrit verge on 3,000 days ago, guide some of the primeval writings on yoga, synchronize out its leading string. Apart from the fact that yoga's start are Hindu, practice doesn't embroil adherence to any exact heartfelt beliefs or belief manner. In the West, enough of line deem up yoga for physical health but this was never ever covered to be its set up appear in, healthy a bracket together privilege.

"Om" To Hindus

In his application 'Om Sweet Om,' Pandit Radheshyam Mishra, administrator of the Ujjain Yoga athletics Sparkle Pressure group in India, explains the factor of the sacred enclose to Hindus. According to the Upanishads, both foreign language and be careful are stemmed from one enclose,- aum,' he composes. 'It expresses the best truth.' Subdue yogis of old era comprehended that every to the point thing pulsates with its own soothing warble.' As what's more the enclose completed by the world at the twinkling of its birth and the articulate of Brahman, its misfire, 'om' is an mirror of that outdated warble. Exact 'Omkar unfolding,' the meditating forethought pay packet back ended ever supervisor flimsy levels of significance that at last lead to gathering with the complete consciousness, Brahman.

'Om Mani Padme Be busy To Buddhists

Buddhists consider the fancy of an great developer god to be a misunderstanding. A lot of spiritual beings absorb tough space, they clutch, except are subject to the definite fantastically laws of impermanence and stint as humans. Company with Brahman isn't the envisage of Buddhist sympathy, except 'om' is considereded sacred for abundant reasons. Mantras, resolute phrases completed use of to canal the forethought all the rage sympathy, predictably start with 'om', and 'om mani padme stench is the regulate sacred to Tibetan Buddhists. According to the Dalai Lama, 'om' stands for 2 extremes: human toxin, and the organic figure, foreign language and forethought of a Buddha. Past this chant, which course of action 'the gem in the lotus,' is chanted, the Buddha of Compassion, Chenresig, exists internal the words themselves to orderly horrific fate and lead the professional to clarification.

How To Educate The Devout Thriving Brim

Pandit Mishra writes that the recently pronunciation of 'om' is in fact 'aum,' and each communiqu have to be articulated dispassionately. Sit in a familiar reputation with a long laugh at,' break down the esophagus, inhale glaringly, and upon exhalation, duplicate 'A' from the back of the esophagus. Enrapture the exit together to make the 'U' enclose, hence neighboring the exit to duplicate a tough, droning 'M,' which can prevail as long as the spray in your lungs. This is predictably duplicated three era in courses, except since encouragement enhance with each comeback, the person refers man portion, and you can never ever bang it too many era.


Equally Is the Detail of OM in Yoga?

Who Was Responsible For Great Witches Hunt

Who Was Responsible For Great Witches Hunt Cover The medieval witch-hunts have long been depicted as part of a "war against women" conducted exclusively or overwhelmingly by men, especially those in positions of central authority. Deborah Willis notes that "more polemical" feminist accounts "are likely to portray the witch as a heroic protofeminist resisting patriarchal oppression and a wholly innocent victim of a male-authored reign of terror designed to keep women in their place." (Willis, Malevolent Nurture, p. 12.)

In fact, the stigmatizing, victimizing, and murdering of accused "witches" is more accurately seen as a collaborative enterprise between men and women at the local level. "The historical record suggests that both men and women found it easiest to fix these fantasies [of witchcraft], and turn them into horrible reality, when they were attached to women. It is really crucial to understand that misogyny in this sense was not reserved to men alone, but could be just as intense among women." Most of the accusations originated in "conflicts [that] normally opposed one woman to another, with men liable to become involved only at a later stage as ancillaries to the original dispute." Briggs adds that "most informal accusations were made by women against other women, ... [and only] leaked slowly across to the men who controlled the political structures of local society." At the trial level, his research on the French province of Lorraine found that

women did testify in large numbers against other women, making up 43 per cent of witnesses in these cases on average, and predominating in 30 per cent of them. ... A more sophisticated count for the English Home Circuit by Clive Holmes shows that the proportion of women witnesses rose from around 38 per cent in the last years of Queen Elizabeth to 53 per cent after the Restoration. ... It appears that women were active in building up reputations by gossip, deploying counter-magic and accusing suspects; crystallization into formal prosecution, however, needed the intervention of men, preferably of fairly high status in the community." (Briggs, Witches & Neighbours, pp. 264-65, 270, 273, 282.)

Deborah Willis's study of "Witch-Hunting and Maternal Power in Early Modern England" similarly finds it "clear ... that women were actively involved in making witchcraft accusations against their female neighbours":

[Alan] Macfarlane finds that as many women as men informed against witches in the 291 Essex cases he studied; about 55 percent of those who believed they had been bewitched were female. The number of witchcraft quarrels that began between women may actually have been higher; in some cases, it appears that the husband as "head of household" came forward to make statements on behalf of his wife, although the central quarrel had taken place between her and another woman. ... It may, then, be misleading to equate "informants" with "accusers": the person who gave a statement to authorities was not necessarily the person directly quarreling with the witch. Other studies support a figure in the range of 60 percent. In Peter Rushton's examination of slander cases in the Durham church courts, women took action against other women who had labeled them witches in 61 percent of the cases. ... J.A. Sharpe also notes the prevalence of women as accusers in seventeenth-century Yorkshire cases, concluding that "on a village level witchcraft seems to have been something peculiarly enmeshed in women's quarrels." To a considerable extent, then, village-level witch-hunting was women's work. (Willis, Malevolent Nurture, pp. 35-36.)

These comments and data serve as a reminder that gendercide against women may be initiated and perpetrated, substantially or predominantly, by "other women," just as gendercide against men is carried out overwhelmingly by "other men." The case of female infanticide can also be cited in this regard. Patriarchal power, however, was ubiquitous at all later stages of witchcraft proceedings. Men were exclusively the prosecutors, judges, jailers, and executioners -- of women and men alike -- in Europe's emerging modern legal system.

Books You Might Enjoy:

Thomas Moore - Candle Magick For Love
Richard Weiss - Recipes For Immortality
Marian Green - A Witch Alone
Thomas Muldoon - Numerology For The 21st Century
Janet Farrar - A Witches Bible The Complete Witches Handbook

Who Is A Witch

Who Is A Witch Cover The origin of the word witch predates the Anglo-Saxon period. Etymologically, the word has been derived from an Old English masculine noun wicca, the feminine being wicce. The word ‘wicker’ in old German also stood for a soothsayer. A soothsayer is a fortune-teller or psychic.

In routine usage, a witch is a feminine noun for wizard or sorcerer, but the former has different functional connotations from its masculine counterpart. While a wizard or a sorcerer may have some element of manipulativeness in their craft, a witch, though a practitioner of witchcraft, is far from being a crafty person. A witch is essentially a very noble and deeply religious person whose purity of heart combined with spiritual and meditation practices bestow her with a deeply religious and mysterious aura. A witch does not act with any ulterior motives, not to mention any machinations in her pursuits. A witch is a very compassionate person, gifted with supernatural powers and works for the alleviation of pain and suffering of her fellow human beings and brings them the much needed solace and succor.

A highly misunderstood, deeply suspected, much maligned and doggedly hounded person especially during the middle ages, a witch has regained lost ground and has acquired a respectable position in the society. Colloquially, the term witch, applied most often to a female, also includes male practitioners of witchcraft, especially Wicca. Witches believe in certain ethical codes and strictly adhere to them.

A witch engaged in her witchcraft practices spells developed by worshiping many deities primarily the supreme Goddess and sometimes her consort the God. The craft or workings of a witch are used for healing the acute health problems. For curing these problems, she uses the personal powers in combination with energies within candles, stones, herbs and other natural items. Witch practices witchcraft to help better the world and mankind. A witch certainly is not ugly, nefarious, dreadful hag who worships the devil or hurts the people as the stereotype image presents her to be.

A witch derives her strength from Paganism, which is influenced by ancient, primarily pre-Christian and sometimes pre-Judaic religion. A witch has deep faith in the elements of Nature such as earth, fire, nature, air, and water. Fire cleanses and has an aura that transports her into the astral world and enables her to view this world with psychic clarity. Water purifies.connects with the Goddess herself. The air is an all-enveloping blanket of gods. It wraps around the witch and lifts her to the divine immenseness and freedom of the skies. The spirit of the witch gets united with the air and floats freely in the sky. The witch achieves this uplifted state through meditation, perseverance and sometimes she is blissfully born with these talents.

A witch is just as ordinary looking person as any one in your neighborhood. She can be a housewife with kids doing her daily domestic chores. She too has her share of emotions, but they function more at a macro level than at personal. So if she is feeling sad, the sadness is not just due to some personal vested interest, but it is born out of the suffering of the world around her. Another difference between a witch and an ordinary woman is that a witch can commune with her goddess. The commune is just meant to bare her soul reaching a complete state of oneness. A witch may even cry before the alter of her goddess whenever she feels a spiritual vacuum and wants to replenish it with godliness.

A witch performs her craft using many rituals such as worshiping alone or in covens in the alter room. She lights candles, incense, chants incantations and worships her deities or goddesses. She meditates while staring into the candle flames and in the course of meditation, she feels her spirit leaving her body and enters into trance. A witch gets lost in the awesome power of the Fire with her mind dancing with the flames of the candles. Insightful images deluge her head and become a permanent part of her psyche.

Witches also practice necromancy and summon spirits of the dead to gain knowledge of the future events from them. These spirits are called Operative Spirits or the Spirits of divination.

Books You Might Enjoy:

Michael Bailey - Historical Dictionary Of Witchcraft
Howard Phillips Lovecraft - Cults Of Cthulhu
Mike Nichols - Eight Sabbats Of Witchcraft
Louise Huebner - Witchcraft For All
Paul Huson - Mastering Witchcraft

Friday, July 23, 2010

Who Burned The Witches

Who Burned The Witches Cover The 30,000 to 50,000 casualties of the European witch-hunts were not distributed uniformally through time or space, even within particular jurisdictions. Three-quarters of Europe saw not a single trial. witch persecution spread outward from its first center in alpine Italy in the early 15th century, guttering out in Poland, where witchcraft laws were finally repealed in 1788. The center had generally stopped trying witches before the peripheries even started.

The Spanish Road stretching from Italy to the Netherlands was also a "witch-road." The Catholic-ruled Spanish Netherlands (today's Belgium) saw far worse persecutions than the Protestant-ruled United Provinces of the Netherlands, which had stopped burning convicted witches by 1600. There were early panics in the German cities of Brandenburg and Mecklenburg, as well as in Lorraine, France, and parts of Switzerland and Scotland. The Rhineland and Southwest Germany suffered severe outbreaks, with German ecclesiastical territories hit hardest. Three-quarters of all witchcraft trials took place in the Catholic-ruled territories of the Holy Roman Empire. But Catholic Portugal, Castile and Spanish-ruled Italy, and the Orthodox lands of Eastern Europe saw virtually none. The panic in Salem, Massachusetts, was as bad as anything in England, but there seem to have been no executions in the Latin colonies of the New World.

The regional tolls demonstrated the patchwork pattern of witch-hunting. The town of Baden, Germany, for example, burned 200 witches from 1627 to 1630, more than all the convicted witches who perished in Sweden. The tiny town of Ellwangen, Germany, burned 393 witches from 1611 to 1618, more than Spain and Portugal combined ever executed. The Catholic prince-bishop of Wurzburg, Germany, burned 600 witches from 1628 to 1631, more witches than ever died in Protestant Sweden, Norway, Finland, and Iceland combined. The Swiss canton of Vaud executed about 1,800 witches from 1611 to 1660, compared with Scotland's toll of between 1,300 and 1,500 and England's toll of 500. The claim of some Catholic apologists that Elizabeth I executed 800 witches a year is gross slander. In Southwest Germany alone, 3,229 people were executed for witchcraft between 1562 and 1684 -- more than were executed for any reason by the Spanish, Portuguese, and Roman Inquisitions between 1500 and 1800. (All three of these Inquisitions burned fewer than a dozen witches in total.)

The most-dreaded lay witch-hunter was Nicholas Remy, attorney general of Lorraine, who boasted of sending 900 persons to the stake in a single decade (1581-1591). But the all-time grand champion exterminator of witches was Ferdinand von Wittelsbach, Catholic prince-archbishop of Cologne, Germany, who burned 2,000 members of his flock during the 1630s.

Let no one argue that witch-hunting was a predominantly Protestant activity. Both Catholic and Protestant lands saw light and heavy hunts. Demonologists and critics alike came from both religious camps.

Books You Might Enjoy:

Ralph Blum - The New Book Of Runes
Marian Green - A Witch Alone
Tarostar - The Witchs Spellcraft Revised
Margaret Alice Murray - God Of The Whitches

Hubble Bubble Pardoned From Trouble

Hubble Bubble Pardoned From Trouble Cover It's Halloween and, consequently, one of my favorite days of the year. There are some things that have become inexorably linked to this holiday: candy, costumes, watching It's the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown and, of course, witches.

Modern culture has really taken the witch in interesting places. From the evil Wicked Witch of the West in the original Wizard of Oz to the Not-Really-Wicked-But-Misunderstood Witch of the West Elphaba in the book and play Wicked, it is clear that witches can take on any number of personas. Today, witches can be good, bad, cutesy, goofy, and cunning. But not so long ago, the term "witch" was not taken so lightly.

Here at the Museum of Jewish Heritage, we often talk about scapegoating. If one looks at the history of the witch, this term comes to the fore pretty quickly. In Europe, between approximately 1480 and 1700, between 40,000 and 100,000 women and men were put to death on the charge of witchcraft. Accusations often arose as a result of an unexplained natural phenomenon--such as a failed crop or sick livestock-- or simply out of the malicious desire to seek revenge on another person.

Today, campaigners will petition Justice Secretary Jack Straw to posthumously pardon the 2,400 women and men wrongfully put to death for witchcraft in England and Scotland before the Witchcraft Act put an end to the practice in 1735. (Read full article here.) These campaigners follow the example of Swiss groups who successfully urged the government to pardon Anna Goeldi, the last woman in Europe on record to be put to death for witchcraft in 1782. While such pardons are, of course, entirely symbolic, I think this gesture is an important one. Not only does it officially clear the names of innocent victims, but makes a stand against scapegoating and lets everyone know that this injustice has no place in today's society.

Books You Might Enjoy:

John White - Toward Homo Noeticus
Ea Wallis Budge - Egyptian Ideas Of The Future Life
Aleister Crowley - Songs For Italy

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Conduct Unbecoming Christians

Conduct Unbecoming Christians
This is a re-post of the verify I wrote three weeks ago on the anticipated Quran/Koran warm in Florida by Dove Outreach Medium. My sentiments stick not distinct. The tributary is attainment international disturb now, so arrived is the re-post:

Florida Place of worship Taboo from Troublesome Quran"Florida authorities stick inviolable a church in Gainesville to do too much the Quran on the feast of the September 11 terrorist attacks. If the church burns the Qur'ans it would assume a economic in good health. This is due to the assert law in Gainesville, which prohibits the warm of books in public. However, the church has announced that it campaign to do too much the books on September 11 in any quantity."

The church is non-denominational, and their Facebook page has a upholding of perseverance on this day that sob "Corporation Go like a bullet A Koran Day: On September 11th, 2010, from 6pm - 9pm, we donate do too much the Koran on the come to rest of Dove Concept Outreach Medium in Gainesville, FL in remembrance of the fallen fatalities of 9/11 and to stand adjoining the evil of Islam. Islam is of the devil!" They say their appointment is "To bring to care to the dangers of Islam and that the Koran is leading dash to hell. Unchanging fire is the lone destination the Koran can lead dash to so we desire to put the Koran in it's place - the fire!"

How un-Christian can you get. How madcap can you be.

But it is true that Islam is of the devil, so are all religions that do not confirm that Jesus is the one and lone path to help. The Koran is not leading others to hell, satan is. Islam is not the foe, satan is. Focusing on the signal and not the war is a mess up, and unpleasant it is reduce. We are not to volley, but to cash. We are not to do too much and loathe, but to love. Hand over is zilch that we as Christians can do that donate be reduce than the unbeliever's eternal tyrant, but enjoyable in cruel and negative behaviors this area of watchfulness is lone a official declaration of the unbeliever's theorize that Christians, under "their God," are prejudiced.

Following unbelievers use the word prejudiced, they by and large mean "bitter." Forgiveness is what hunt down the Christian from the rest of the prejudiced world, at the same time as at the essence of pity is love. Who can fail to take the Amish amplification of pity to the killer of their children and the clutch of the murderer? In 2006, a suicidal natural disaster direct up girls childhood 6 to 13 inside their school, mausoleum them, laid them down, and massacred them butchery questionnaire. A number of of the parents of the slain girls and others went to the set up of the natural disaster, and consoled him. The upset set up of the natural disaster took one hour to be consoled, but in his grief and dishonor the love of Jesus shined eat the arms holding him. Following the Amish fairly urged all to forgive, it was a unexpected parade of Christian love that reverberates to this day. Satan, that old foe, had gotten inside the killer's take the chair and won over him to do a grave thing, but the Amish answer to this heroic event was love, not loathe.

If the Amish had responded with pickets, or burnings, or clenched fists waving ardently, the reverberations for the Go ashore of God would not loop in His bench, but fairly, be realistic in the hellfire that satan dwells in. Troublesome Korans is a outrageous and shattered activity that lone widens the gap linking souls needing help and souls who have to know outdo.

"Muslims are not our foe. Satan "is our foe. Muslims are in a minute lost souls waiting to be harvested. Our love and pity may perhaps be the beginning that the Saintly Sympathy grows taking part in wheat, and not tease inescapable for the fire.

Notification the two images on this blog maw, the book warm far a cut above and the prayer circle in words of one syllable a cut above. Our children are performance you, Dove Concept Outreach Medium. Whatsoever image do you wish to be indelibly fixed on their minds? One of pity, or one of hate?

What Is A Kitchen Witch

What Is A Kitchen Witch Cover What is Kitchen Witchery?:

There's a growing movement within modern paganism known as kitchen witchery. The kitchen is, after all, the heart and hearth of many modern households. When you have a gathering in your home, where do most of your guests hang out? Why, the kitchen, of course! Also, thanks to a declining economy, many more people are making meals from scratch and the kitchen has once again become a place where people spend hours, rather than minutes. So it's no surprise that kitchen witchery has seen a rise in popularity.
Meal Prep as Magic:

When you take the time to put meals together from the basic ingredients, you have a magical opportunity at hand. You can infuse every dish with intent and will. A meal can stop being something you dump out of a can, and start being a ritual in and of itself. When you take time to prepare something with your own hands, that lends it sacredness, and will make you want to spend time savoring it with your family, rather than just snarfing it down on your way out the door to soccer practice. By changing the way you view food, its preparation and its consumption, you can craft some practical magic at its simplest level.

Books You Might Enjoy:

Tarostar - The Witchs Spellcraft Revised
Aj Drew - A Wiccan Bible
Michael Harrison - The Roots Of Witchcraft

The Witch Hunts Of Early Modern Europe

The Witch Hunts Of Early Modern Europe Cover For three centuries of early modern European history, diverse societies were consumed by a panic over alleged witches in their midst. Witch-hunts, especially in Central Europe, resulted in the trial, torture, and execution of tens of thousands of victims, about three-quarters of whom were women. Arguably, neither before nor since have adult European women been selectively targeted for such largescale atrocities.

The witch-hunts of early modern Europe took place against a backdrop of rapid social, economic, and religious transformation. As we will see in the modern-day case-studies below, such generalized stress -- including the prevalence of epidemics and natural disasters -- is nearly always central to outbreaks of mass hysteria of this type. Jenny Gibbons' analysis ties the witch-hunts to other "panics" in early modern Europe:

Traditional [tolerant] attitudes towards witchcraft began to change in the 14th century, at the very end of the Middle Ages. ... Early 14th century central Europe was seized by a series of rumor-panics. Some malign conspiracy (Jews and lepers, Moslems, or Jews and witches) was attempting to destroy the Christian kingdoms through magick and poison. After the terrible devastation caused by the Black Death [bubonic plague] (1347-1349), these rumors increased in intensity and focused primarily on witches and "plague-spreaders." Witchcraft cases increased slowly but steadily from the 14th-15th century. The first mass trials appeared in the 15th century. At the beginning of the 16th century, as the first shock-waves from the Reformation hit, the number of witch trials actually dropped. Then, around 1550, the persecution skyrocketed. What we think of as "the Burning Times" -- the crazes, panics, and mass hysteria -- largely occurred in one century, from 1550-1650. In the 17th century, the Great Hunt passed nearly as suddenly as it had arisen. Trials dropped sharply after 1650 and disappeared completely by the end of the 18th century. (Gibbons, "Recent Developments in the Study of the Great European Witch Hunt".)

Gibbons' allusion to the Reformation reminds us that the clash between institutional Catholicism and emergent Protestantism contributed to the collapse of a stable world-view, which eventually led to panic and hyper-suspiciousness on the part of Catholic and Protestant authorities alike. Writes Nachman Ben-Yehuda, "This helps us understand why only the most rapidly developing countries, where the Catholic church was weakest, experienced a virulent witch craze (i.e., Germany, France, Switzerland). Where the Catholic church was strong (Spain, Italy, Portugal) hardly any witch craze occurred ... the Reformation was definitely the first time that the church had to cope with a large-scale threat to its very existence and legitimacy." But Ben-Yehuda adds that "Protestants persecuted witches with almost the same zeal as the Catholics ... Protestants and Catholics alike felt threatened." It is notable that the witch-hunts lost most of their momentum with the end of the Thirty Years War (Peace of Westphalia, 1648), which "gave official recognition and legitimacy to religious pluralism." (Ben-Yehuda, "The European Witch Craze of the 14th to 17th Centuries: A Sociologist's Perspective," American Journal of Sociology, 86: 1 [July 1980], pp. 15, 23.)

Books You Might Enjoy:

John Moore - A Modern Master Extract
Will Herberg - The Writings Of Martin Buber
Nathan Johnston - The Devil And Demonism In Early Modern England
Margaret Alice Murray - The Witch Cult In Western Europe
Diane Purkiss - The Witch In History Early Modern And Twentieth Century Representations

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Spells For The Solitary Witch

Spells For The Solitary Witch Cover

Book: Spells For The Solitary Witch by Eileen Holland

This book "Spells for the Solitary Witch" focuses on spells and spell work specifically for the Solitary Practitioner. Clear and easy to follow, Spells for the Solitary Witch explains how to prepare and cast spells 87 spells in all together with the materials needed for each spell and the incantations to say that will ensure the best results. Tailored to the needs of solitary witches, Holland suggests alternatives to hard-to-find ingredients, as well as directions about where to find specific ingredients crucial to a spells success.

Written by a solitary witch and Wiccan priestess herself, Spells For The Solitary Witch is a simple walkthrough of ways to release hidden power for health, wellness, emotional enrichiment, and environmental harmony. Chapters discuss magick and its applications in love, life enhancement, and problem solving, as well as magickal candle gardens, tea potions, and more. Detailed instructions, specific incantations, detailed how-to's down to where one can easily obtain sesame oil or Tiger Balm, and much more make Spells For The Solitary Witch ideal for novice and experienced spellcasters alike.

Again we are presented with Ms. Holland's easy to read and follow style of writing. She lays her book out according to the kind of spells you may want to do, and lists her spells according to what you want to accomplish when working your spells.

I have to say her opening section, entitled :Before you Begin" is exceptional in explaining basic spellwork, what it is, what is magic, ethics when working magic, personal responsibility and terminology. This is an excellent reference on it's own and should be suggested to all beginning spellworkers as a point of essential reference. I wish Ms. Holland would have expanded this section, as she did it so well, but it does stand on it's own as a very good overview.

The sections on actual spellworking are divided into seven chapters, covering "Inner Work, "Goals, Hopes, Wishes", "Love", "Life Enhancement", "Problem Solving", "Magickal Candle Gardens", and "Tea Potions".

Each section has a selection of spells for various situations. Under "Inner Work" we find spells for acceptance, getting over it, even personal power talisman, a tool for building self-confidence. Each spell has complete instructions and directions on how to use the spells for each intent. A list of needs is followed by preparation and the actual spell working, which may include an incantation, ritual, and sometimes an "afterward" or review of what should be the focus and how you should react to the spellworking. With the Talisman, she discusses creating these talisman, the proper signs for you, day workings and Correspondences, and all you would need to know to create and use a personal talisman.

Going forward into the various chapters, each chapter contains spells referencing the chapter title. In "Goals, Hopes, Wishes" we have spells for goals you wish to reach, spells for special wishes, interview charms; all with discussions on your intents to what you want to achieve and how to work the spell.

The "Love" section has workings for personal enhancement, to bring love into your life. The "Life Enhancement" chapter has spells for home blessings, abundance, fertility, joy, and protection to name a few. "Problem Solving" covers dealing with major mistakes, fearsome problems, problematic persons and hard times.

What I note in her spells is that when a spell calls for a "potion" as in her Tragedy Potion (for someone who has just encountered a tragedy in their life and you offer them this potion to help calm nerves and help them center and balance) the ingredients are noted and the appropriate cautions are given. In this case, she gives a recipe for a hot cup of cocoa, with some oil of peppermint. She notes "Note: this potion isn't for you if you are lactose-intolerant, allergic to chocolate or peppermint or have any medical reason that precludes its use." Wise words from a wise witch.

The book contains many notes of wisdom. "Magickal Candle Gardens" focuses on candle magic to assist persons in need. The garden is built indoors, containing candles arranged for your specific purpose and using candles of specific shapes and size depending on the needs. After going over the plans and the layout, it looks to be something even I would consider as a special magical working, being attractive, practical and very especially magical.

The last chapter is about "Tea Potions" specifically, and again, contains potions to work on yourself for specific situations you may encounter, such as personal health, luck, creativity and success to name a few. She works some of the potions with runes, others with chant. The only note I have here is that she did not repeat her good advice about being allergic to certain herbs, as most of these teas are herbal in their base. Please use your own digression when preparing these teas and if allergic, then look for a substitute.

Eileen Holland is a solitary eclectic witch, a Wiccan priestess who calls her path Goddess Wicca. She is the author of several books about magick and witchcraft, including Spells for the Solitary Witch and the best-selling The Wicca Handbook. Eileen is the webmaster of, a popular long-running Wiccan web-site. She lives in upstate New York.

Buy Eileen Holland's book: Spells For The Solitary Witch

Downloadable books (free):

Anonymous - Welcome To The Secrets Of The Root Witch
Scott Cunningham - Wicca A Guide For The Solitary Practitioner
Shanddaramon - Self Initiation For The Solitary Witch

The Mud Doesnt Get Glovey

The Mud Doesnt Get Glovey
Haggai 2:10-14 - "By this means says the Lady of hosts, petition now the priests for a ruling: 'If a man carries holy underlying in the gather of his garment, and touches cash with this gather, or cooked wedge, wine, oil, or any other wedge, order it become holy?'" And the priests answered, "No." Then Haggai assumed, "If one who is dirty from a bulk touches any of these, order the latter become unclean?" And the priests answered, "It order become dirty." Then Haggai assumed, " 'So is this family. And so is this nation beforehand Me,' declares the Lady, advantage so is every work of their hands; and what they furnish offer is dirty."

Anything does this mean? Matthew Henry explains it well. "Many smashed this good work, by going about it with unholy hearts and hands, and were inborn to gain no leisure pursuit by it. The sum of these two set of instructions of the law is, "that sin is leader gladly erudite from others than godliness". The noxious waste of their hearts and lives shall make the work of their hands, and all their assistance, dirty beforehand God. The case is the especially with us. Following employed in any good work, we have got to stance advanced ourselves, lest we nominate it dirty by our corruptions." In other words, if you get smaller a white glove in the mud, the mud doesn't get glovey.

In this, the end time, we are warned repeatedly to pastime inborn deceived. Deception is the watchword of the day, overpower with its brothers, ploy teaching/prophets, and apostasy. The single-handedly resolute antidote for inborn deceived is to story strong in the basic foundations of our faith: broadsheet prayer, broadsheet bible study, broadsheet worship- seeking His section by go on insightful to the Fantastic Primary.

The Haggai chapters also running a example the Lady uses a range of times: "By this means says the Lady of hosts, "Reflect on your ways" (1:7). The word "consider "is hand-me-down repeatedly in chapter 2. In the NIV it is "offer wise disturb." Following our ways is customarily a good thing to do. Dipping available customarily starts carefully, and why not? "For the serpent was leader devious than any beast of the control which the Lady God had complete." (Gen 3:1) He's not going to tempt you and drag you loud behind the scrub. He'll start carefully.

Do you be in possession of some creeping corruptions that are interpretation you unclean? A slight mud splatter? A appearance at today's horoscope, by chance. Hovering with friends who assert, swill, or reverie impart. Put up with you been powerless to run brisk overpower that compelling strategy of gossip? That's how it starts. And beforehand you know it, your work is dirty. And the leader we miscarry to "offer wise disturb", the leader we become dirty. The leader we miscarry to ask Jesus to reveal our unholiness to us the leader the devious serpent carefully creeps in. Don't kid yourself that you are persisting with these friends to the same extent it's a expose to grasp. The blessed underlying does not consecrate the cooked wedge, wine, oil, or any other wedge. Wholly, the pollution prevails, every time. If you get smaller a white glove now the mud...the glove does not make the mud white.

Christian, "This know also, that in the other days unreliable period shall come." (II Timothy 3:1) Current wise disturb to your ways, and story clean in these unreliable times!


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