Wheel of the Year

df58f887b9471a4437311c9de7ea1542 Image link

Joining a local circle (an open group) got me back into Paganism three years ago. Before my spiritual hiatus, I was a solitary witch and most of the magick I did was mostly self serving. As a solitary witch, I didn’t dig into the core beliefs or participate in the holidays or “Sabbats”. But getting back in to Paganism, I became actively involved in what we call the “Wheel of the Year”.

The Wheel of the Year is an observation of the cycle of the seasons. Mythologically, it tells the endless story of the God and Goddess: The Goddess changing from the Maiden, the Mother and the Crone reflecting on the feminine cycles. While the Horned God dies and is reborn each year, reflecting on our personal transformations and symbolizing the ongoing circle of life and death. The Goddess not only symbolizes feminine transformation, but reflects Life itself while the God reflects mortal mankind and his interactions with her. These are only a few examples of the deeper meanings behind the God and the Goddess and are ALWAYS open to personal interpretation.

rte_img4

Above is the most popular version of the Wheel of the Year based around Celtic belief. (Image Link)

The Wheel of the Year can be as symbolically layered as you want or you can keep it simple. For the first year and a half in my circle, I participated in the Sabbats without doing much research, but then I started volunteering to write and perform ritual myself forcing me to learn and reflect on each one. Writing my first ritual was really nerve wracking. I was really worried about sticking along the lines of the Celtic Wheel, even though I didn’t follow Celtic mythos. But as I continued to write more rituals, I became really comfortable with it and was able to find reflections of my own life that went into the holiday, making each ritual more personal and deep with meaning.

Writing rituals opened a door to my magical practices. I became in tune to the cycles and it’s made me conscious of the active energies around me. It has allowed me to be able to avoid taking the seasons for granted and forces me to look at things with  my own personal reflection. I use the Sabbats to set forth goals and to reflect on personal growth. The deeper I get into rituals, the more I am able to add more elements into it such as Western astrology and the actual elements (Earth, Air, Fire, Water).

6c04fa6e4f973eccf03d7c7915563dd3

Above is a chart of a few symbols for the Wheel of the Year. (Image link)

I’m certainly not trying to overwhelm. The point is, there are so many ways to celebrate and observe the Wheel of the Year. You don’t even have to be a pagan or wiccan to celebrate the Wheel. The point of it is, to become in tune with the cycles within and around you, to gain a deeper understanding of yourself and the world around. The more I studied the Sabbats, the more depth I discovered and continue to find. I encourage you, if you don’t already, to start participating in the Sabbats. It doesn’t have to be big or all encompassing. Take it holiday by holiday and just a few minutes to light a candle and think about the things you’ve accomplished and what you would like to or simply saying thank you to the universe for blessing you with what you have.

Suggested reading:

http://www.thewhitegoddess.co.uk/the_wheel_of_the_year/

http://wicca.cnbeyer.com/sabbat.shtml

Sabbats by Edain McCoy I use this book ALL of the time! It’s really great for refreshing yourself and to get new ideas for each ritual.

 

Advertisements

Focusing on the Present

thumb-1920-76836

I feel that the older I get, I am able to put things in to better perspective. I suppose you’d say I’ve gained wisdom. 😛 We’ve always been told to dream big, look to the future, etc but the problem was, I took that quite literally. While that’s certainly normal for a young person to do, you don’t stop to appreciate or absorb things. I believe that I’ve always set an unreasonably high goal for myself to be this person that I’m never going to be and nothing was ever enough because of it. It never occurred to me until these last few months that fame has been what I’ve been seeking all of these years, which is really silly when I think about it. Up until these last few months, it’s been about feeding my ego and focusing on creating an image of myself rather than being who I truly am.

I got my degree in theater (just graduated yesterday!) and with that, I was planning on pursuing a bachelor’s degree and then I don’t know, meet the right people? Get famous? When I started to play out the realistic side of what was to happen seeking my next degree, I realized that I wasn’t going to be happy with it. It was going to be four years of struggling hard (theater is NOT easy, it’s a whole lot of physical and emotional labor), going into a whole lot of debt and not being able to enjoy my time with my boyfriend or my cats or my hobbies. The truth of it is, theater just isn’t my passion so why put 4 + years into something that isn’t going to be a reward to me in the end?

So with that being said, I don’t know what the fuck to really do with my life. But for once, I’m honestly really okay with that. I realized that in the end, I really just want a family life, which doesn’t mean I have to have kids. I just want to enjoy myself, work on building up my artistic skills and be able to spend time with the people and creatures that matter most. I’ve been humbled being brought down to Earth and I’ve found a peace that I have never had before. It would be great to have a big money-making career and to be able to have my name known to thousands, but you have to have the passion for that and I don’t. Why fight against the current when you literally aren’t going to get anywhere by doing so?

So with that being said, I am able to start setting realistic goals in mind, creatively and spiritually. I’m really excited to be able to have the time and a focused mind for it. I have found harmony. It’s taken 25 years to find it, but I have it! I have no doubts it will reflect on my magic, art, myself and certainly my relationships. I’m excited to see what the world has to offer me now that I’m not fighting it. 🙂

 

Image source: link

Learning to Release Control

old-map-beautiful-compass-globe-map-nice-old-map-photography-world-map-768x1366

Hail all!  I wanted to first off say thank you, I’ve noticed I have had frequent visitors since I started sharing through Instagram and I want to say I really appreciate that you are taking the time to read. Secondly, I want to apologize for my brief absence on here. It is April, as you know, which means it’s literally the last month of classes until graduation. So my focus really hasn’t been on writing specific topics for you guys. Since this is a personal blog, I wanted to update you guys on what’s going on in my life and talk about my shadow work.

I’ve had a cutthroat attitude damn near my whole life. It wasn’t really something I was conscious of, up until these last few years. It’s hard to admit to yourself that you aren’t a saint, let alone truly addressing the bad qualities in you. I’ve really felt of late that my friendships have been failing and it’s made me have to address to myself, why it is that I find myself in the same situation over and over again?

We all have our life lessons that we need to learn and I think one of mine has been to learn to release control. I have always been rough around the edges. I didn’t really have a great childhood. My brother was really mean to me and abused me most of my childhood. I was weird and isolated and it definitely carried over into my personality.  I don’t think I ever really developed social skills growing up. Most of the relationships I’ve had over the course of my life, even including my relationship to my parents, have failed. Mostly because of miscommunication. I also think a part of it too is that I had control issues. As a young child, I didn’t really have friends and so when I found someone I liked, which has always been a rare thing, I really tried to control them. I was possessive and selfish. When I couldn’t control that person any more, I was finished with them because I felt betrayed by it. I hated that that person would want to spend time with other friends, it made me feel so hurt and fearful that they wouldn’t want to be friends with me again so I did the only thing I could do: control the situation and ended the friendship.

People don’t just have a cutthroat attitude for no reason though. Like I’ve said, I was abused for gods know how long in my childhood. I truly don’t remember when it started, I was that young. I felt like I had to be strong and scary to be able to protect myself. My last dating relationship was a toxic one. He was a manipulative person and I really loved and trusted him. Our relationship was never 50/50. It was always about what he wanted and I really had no control over my life in the time we were together. The first place we lived together I really didn’t want to be a part of, but I was 18 eager to get out my parent’s house that my brother still lived in so I just jumped the first ship that I could. I had to live with really shitty roommates who were emotionally manipulative and conniving and I basically spent five years miserable with people who were just awful.

Leaving that relationship, I wanted to get better and become a better person. I hated the bitter person I became and I just wanted to grow and finally leave my long past behind. I really wasn’t planning on dating after that, but my relationship with my boyfriend just kind of happened. In the course of the three years we’ve been together, I’ve watched him transform from a young guy in to a man. Not only has he grown, but he makes me grow into a better person as well. I’ve truly felt 50/50 in our relationship. There aren’t mind games.  After a year into our relationship we decided to go back to school together, both in our mid-twenties already having a previous degree.  We got our first apartment together and it was honestly the first amount of control I have had in my life really, especially in my adult life. These last two years with my boyfriend have honestly been the best two years of my life.

With the end of our college chapter coming up, he brought up a question I honestly should have been prepared for: where do we want to move to next?  It really floored me that he actually asked me where I wanted to move. Yes, we’ve been together for three years, but that mentality of the lack of control I had in my past relationship carries over from time to time. On top of that, I just assumed that he wanted to live close-close to home. I didn’t honestly think that there would be much option.

We certainly can all have our doubts in our relationships and last fall, I was having a bit of a quarter-life crisis after realizing I did not want to continue further in to my education. I hit a moment where I was in doubt over everything. Wondering if I was going to hit a stagnant part in my life and fearing not knowing what was next. Wondering if I should just leave and move somewhere starting new, at least I would be in control of the situation.  It was an emotional rock bottom for me and it made me feel really isolated and alone. The last 6 months have been about conquering my doubts and fears and trying to come to terms with the fact that I can’t just write my life path down in a time frame of months.

Realizing I didn’t know what I had in store for the year to come really rattled me to the point of genuinely considering suicide. I know that sounds really dramatic, but it really was quarter-life crisis and I was in panic mode. I’m really proud of myself for being able to get through that period of doubt, because it was a dark place. I felt like I had nothing to live for. These 6 months, I’ve learned to be okay with handing over the cards to fate. It’s even bigger of a deal, because I’ve chosen to hand my cards over to my boyfriend and let him take control. I made the active decision to fully trust him without fear and it’s really brought a harmony into our relationship that we didn’t have before.

I’ve really just been kind of a bitch all of my life, unable to see the good people in it, because I was always focused on the bad ones. I have had a chip on my shoulder for as long as I can remember, so it didn’t really occur to me that there was something wrong with me. I’ve always felt that I’ve had to do things on my own, because I wouldn’t disappoint myself that way. Even in my present relationship, I reserved a piece of myself that way if things didn’t turn out well I could have the emotional strength to pack up and move on. But I’m done with that mentality. He’s done nothing but prove to me he is a loyal and great man and it’s my turn to return the favor.

Beyond my dating relationship, I want to learn to be better at personal relationships. I’ve always had to have a selfish way of thinking for self preservation, but I really don’t need to have that kind of an attitude anymore. Not that I’m saying I shouldn’t be on my guard about strangers, but if I always have that huge wall built, I’ll never be open to new friendships and new potential.

I’ve really made progress in my personal growth. Like I said, I really wasn’t planning on starting a dating relationship after the chaos of my previous one. I really wanted to start my next relationship as a clean and mended person, I feel bad that my boyfriend has had to deal with the process of me mending, because I have been really selfish and unkind to him in the process. But he’s stuck around for three years during the time of my personal recovery, it’s exciting to think of the new potential with us putting a close to our college chapter together. I’m really proud of him and I’m really proud of myself.

 

Image source: link