Mabon in Southern Hemisphere – Ostara in Northern Hemisphere

Blessed Mabon to all of us in the Southern Hemisphere.  The days are cooling down and the threat of fires is lessening.  It has been a long hot summer and I for one am looking forward to the cooler days.  Blessed Be!

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Mabon or Autumn Equinox

Mabon falls at the Autumnal Equinox, when nights and days are of equal length, but light bends increasing towards darkness, and winter is on its way. It is a time of balance, and a time of looking forward to and preparation for the winter.

At this time food is prepared for storage, jams and pickles are made, and fruits are candied and preserved. Maple syrup is a traditional food for Mabon, as are all long-keeping plant foods, and honey, which is a natural preservative. Special foods to celebrate with include traditional Greek baklava (honey cake), and anything preserved or that involves fermentation. The colors of the season are brown and gold.

In Australia, Mabon falls close to the end of Daylight Savings time, and the change in the time that evening falls makes us very aware that winter is on its way, and that summer is well and truly over. It is at Mabon that the Cauldrons are first lit again, the last of the summer fruits are eaten in thanks, and summer ribbons and garlands are put away in preparation for the colder months.

Mabon is the second harvest, and the Goddess is mourning her fallen consort as he has been cast down, but the rebirth found in the seeds of harvest gives hope for the future, and the continuing circle of hope. Mabon is a time of gathering, of preparation. It is also a time to walk among the gum trees, smelling the resin and the eucalyptus oils in the air, and gathering oils, barks, plants and herbs to be dried for culinary, medicinal and magickal purposes.

At the Autumnal Equinox, altars are dressed with leaves and bark, the last of the flowers and the first of the winter fruits. Suitable offerings include autumnal vegetables and pickles, and preserved fruits and root crops. Mabon is a time to acknowledge the joys of living, as well as the suffering that is a part of life. It is a time for meditation and repose, and for spending time with close family and Coven members in silent appreciation of the relationships we share and that strengthen us.

In the Southern hemisphere, Mabon falls on the 21st and 22nd of March, and in the Northern hemisphere it falls on the 21st and 22nd of September. It is associated with the festivals of Winter Finding (Teutonic) and Alban Elfed (Scottish).

From akashawitchcraft.net (website no longer available)

 

OSTARA – NORTHERN HEMISPHERE

Blessed Ostara to all in the Northern Hemisphere, the snow is finally melting and you will begin to feel the warmth of the sun and the flowers will bloom.  Enjoy the new season. Blessed Be!

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Midway through Spring!  We find ourselves at the Equinox and the festival of Ostara.

Spring Equinox: March 21

This is the time of equal day and equal night, the balance of light and dark, and so at this time we have the chance to invite balance into our lives.

Add this to the energy of Spring, and as we see in our gardens, we also have the opportunity for new growth, fresh starts and new beginnings.  These themes are woven into the religious celebration of Easter, and the word ‘Easter’ has its roots in the name of this seasonal moment: Ostara.

The trees have come back to life, blossoms are blooming, the grass is growing, the sprouts are ‘taking off’, growth is everywhere! Beautiful smells, spriteliness and baby animals…

During Spring, everywhere in nature, we see and feel and hear the energy, the pulse, the sound of new growth.

And so we have the opportunity to consciously align with this energy
and ‘use’ it to fuel whatever new beginnings we are creating in our lives.

Your being, as part of the Earth, part of the cycle of the seasons, will be influenced by this energy whether you’re paying attention to it or not. If you pay some attention, you will feel it, and you can be in flow with it.

The equivalent time in our lives to Ostara is Menarche (first period) for girls and puberty for boys, new beginnings of the next level.


Spring Spiritual Practice

Think like the gardener, and align with the Earth energy of now, contemplate the growth that has taken hold in your life and around you…

What are you developing, is that what you want?
Do you need to get out the ‘fertiliser’ to help what’s growing to be stronger?
Do you need to do some ‘weeding’? What do you need to bring into your life to create balance?

At the Equinox, with the equal light and dark, we have the opportunity to give thanks for, and focus with gratitude (which will help it grow more) on that which is growing and developing in ourselves and our lives and also to let go of that which ‘no longer serves’ or what stands in the way of your growth and development, this could be ‘bad’ habits and restricting beliefs (the weeds!)…

In a moving meditation, feel yourself to be like a tree, as your blossoms are blooming and your leaves are starting to unfurl, move as the wind would move you, strong in your roots and able to shift lightly and easily from a grounded position, swaying from side to side and round and round… notice what wants to fall away as you do this, remnants of old, no longer needed.  Make the sounds of spring that rise up from within you… so much will grow from now, headed toward full bloom at the Summer Solstice in three moons.

Suggested Ceremony for Ostara
Here’s a suggestion for a simple ceremony to honour the Spring Equinox with your family and friends. Paint an egg, perhaps simply, decoratively or perhaps with symbols to give particular meanings, to represent something new starting in your life, or something you would like to start.  Make a ‘nest’, place it in the centre of your circle that you create together to do your ceremony.

Do what you do to make sacred space, call for protection, guidance and support and focus together. Go around the circle and have each person explain what their egg represents for them, what their dreams and intentions for new growth this season are and then place the egg in the nest. Once all the eggs are in the nest have everyone focus on them and send their loving supportive energy. This can be done by visualising pink light flowing from your heart area. Conclude your ceremony going around the circle again with each person making a wish for their community and one for the planet. This could also be as simple as a ‘nest’ on your dining table with you and your children around it doing the magic.

We celebrate Easter in the Southern Hemisphere at the same time as the Northern Hemisphere, simply because of generational habit of aligning with the religious festival as it occurs in the Northern Hemisphere, not seasonal appropriateness. The word Easter comes from the name of the ancient Anglo-Saxon spring Goddess Eostra or Eostara. And the Easter bunny and Easter eggs are all symbols of the fertility that is celebrated at the Spring Equinox. Eggs are a symbol of new life.

To honour and celebrate this time you could gather with some like-minded folk, or with your children and conduct a ceremony to give thanks for new ways, new opportunities and balance in your lives.

Blessed Be!

Source:  https://janehardwickecollings.com/spring-equinox-ostara-northern-hemisphere/

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New Release – The Tortured Trail By Linell Jeppsen & Jeb Rosebrook

Today I have a New Release for you, The Tortured Trail, book two in the Jack Ballard series, by my friend Linell Jeppsen and Author Jeb Rosebrook.  Book one is No Mans Land.

Tortured Trail NeLL

 

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REVENGE AND RETRIBUTION

Tortured Trail is the second novel in the straight shooting, fast moving, action-adventure Jack Ballard series. 

In book one – No Man’s Land – Ballard helped save a widow and her daughter from a hostile land grab in West Texas. Now, needing some cash, Jack has joined a cattle drive in Bandera, Texas and will serve as security and “Nighthawker” on the Western Trail heading toward Dodge City, Kansas.

The trail, however, is beset with trouble. Storms, cattle thieves, and Indian attacks follow Jack and the Triple T cattle drive, and the further north they go the worse it gets…

The Tortured Trail is the brain-child of the great screenwriter Jeb Rosebrook, and is an edge-of-your-seat thriller!

 

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New Release – Cursed Blade By Jade Kerrion

Today I have a New Release, Cursed Blade, book two of the Daughter of Air by my friend Jade Kerrion.  This is an awesome series and I highly recommend it.

Cursed Blade

 

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A cursed dagger. A desperate king. His quest will damn his kingdom, and the entire Earth.

The mer-king has bargained with demons, trading the death of the oceans for his soul. As the seas churn with disease, the marine biologist Varun Zale and the mermaid Ashe battle the mer-king’s army across the black tides to the ancient stronghold of Atlantis.

They cannot hold back the mer-king forever, but there might be another way to end his rampage before the demonic bargain is fulfilled. When Ashe’s cursed dagger claims a life, it can gift the soul to the king, and the way Ashe looks at Varun makes him wonder if she has identified him as the perfect target.

When the dagger finally strikes, it will rip the shroud of deception. For the mer-king, three centuries is a long time to live with hate, but it’s even longer to believe a lie…

You will be swept away by this genre-blending masterpiece of urban fantasy, science fiction, fairy tales, and mythology. ONE-CLICK to dive under the sea today!

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Lammas in Southern Hemisphere – Imbolc in Northern Hemisphere

Lammas blessings to those of us in the Southern Hemisphere.  May we stay safe from the heat and the fires and look forward to the cooler days.  Blessed Be!

 

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Lammas (2nd February)

Lammas is the traditional time of Harvest, and preparation for the coming winter months, celebrated on the 2nd of February in the Southern hemisphere, and on the 2nd of August in the Northern hemisphere.

Lammas is awareness of the approach of winter, and thanksgiving for the year’s harvest. The name Lammas derives from the Old English Hlaf-Mass, which means “bread feast”.

Lammas is traditionally the festival where the first loaf of bread from the harvest is broken and shared in the name of the Goddess. All crops associated with bread are sacred to this time, in particular barley. The drinks of the season are beer, ale, cider, and all things brewed.

In Australia, Lammas is an ideal Sabbat to spend down the beach on hot summer evenings, sipping cool drinks and honouring Mother-Sea by appreciating and respecting her cooling waves. Lammas is a harvest not only of crops, but of all that we have sown through the year, and so it is a good time to wander the beaches with a garbage bag, cleaning up the mess that thoughtless people have left behind, and doing our best to restore Mother-Sea to her natural glory.

Unfortunately, part of the harvest at this time is also the sad and distressing harvest that animal charities face when inundated with unwanted animals that had been Christmas presents just a few weeks earlier. Lammas is a good time to emphasize the importance of all Her creatures by supporting animal charities with donations of time and/or money. In this way, we can help ease the lives of unwanted animals and, when necessary, help with their passing into the next world where they will hopefully find true love and companionship according to their kind.

Lammas is the celebration of harvest, and ties in with Lughnassadh, the Celtic festival in honor of the Sun God, which is held on the 7th of February in the Southern hemisphere, and the 7th of August in the North. Tradition tells that the Sun King gives his energy to the crops to ensure life while the Mother prepares to transform into her aspect as the Crone.

Lammas is the time to teach and to share the fruits of our achievements. The baking of bread, the gathering of seed for the next year’s sowing, and the making of corn dolls are all traditional at Lammas. The altar is decorated with loaves of freshly baked bread, corn dolls and wreaths, and the fruits and vegetables of the harvest. Lammas is a time to share, be thankful for our blessings, and be joyful for the blessings that are to come.

Lammas is also known as Cornucopia (Italy/Latin) and Thingtide (Teutonic).

(From akashawitchcraft.net ~ website no longer available)

 

Imbolc – Northern Hemisphere

To all in the Northern Hemisphere I wish you a blessed Imbolc.  Keep warm and safe during your freezing winter months and look forward to the coming Spring.

Blessed Be!

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Imbolc Lore

Posted on February 2, 2015 by ladyoftheabyss

It is traditional upon Imbolc, at sunset or just after ritual, to light every lamp in the house-if only for a few moments. Or, light candles in each room in honor of the Sun’s rebirth. Alternately, light a kerosene lamp with a red chimney and place this in a prominent part of the home or in a window.

If snow lies on the ground outside, walk in it for a moment, recalling the warmth of summer. With your projective hand, trace an image of the Sun on the snow.

Foods appropriate to eat on this day include those from the dairy, since Imbolc marks the festival of calving. Sour cream dishes are fine. Spicy and full-bodied foods in honor of the Sun are equally attuned. Curries and all dishes made with peppers, onions, leeks, shallots, garlic or chives are appropriate. Spiced wines and dishes containing raisins-all foods symbolic of the Sun-are also traditional.

Wicca: A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner
Scott Cunningham

Imbolc Ritual

By Scott Cunningham

A symbol of the season, such as a representation of a snowflake, a white flower, or perhaps some snow in a crystal container can be placed on the altar. An orange candle anointed with musk, cinnamon, frankincense or rosemary oil, unlit, should also be there. Snow can be melted and used for the water during the circle casting.

Arrange the altar, light the candles and censer, and cast the Circle of Stones.

Recite the Blessing Chant.

Invoke the Goddess and God.

Say such words as the following:

This is the time of the feast of torches,
when every lamp blazes and shines
to welcome the rebirth of the God.
I celebrate the Goddess,
I celebrate the God;
All the Earth celebrates
Beneath its mantle of sleep.

Light the orange taper from the red candle on the altar (or at the Southern point of the circle). Slowly walk the circle clockwise, bearing the candle before you. Say these or similar words:

All the land is wrapped in winter.
The air is chilled and
frost envelopes the Earth.
But Lord of the Sun,
Horned One of animals and wild places,
Unseen you have been reborn of the gracious
Mother Goddess, Lady of all fertility.
Hail Great God! Hail and welcome!

Stop before the altar, holding aloft the candle. Gaze at its flame. Visualize your life blossoming with creativity, with renewed energy and strength.

If you need to look into the future or past, now is an ideal time.

Works of magic, if necessary, may follow.

Celebrate the Simple Feast.

The circle is released.

—Wicca: A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner
Scott Cunningham

 

New Release Cursed Tides by Jade Kerrion

Today I have a New Release for you, Cursed Tides which is the first book in the Daughters of Air series,  I have read it and it’s awesome.   This series is by my friend Jade Kerrion, I highly recommend it.

cursed tides cover

 

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She no longer wants to be a part of his world. But he must convince her to save it…

Ashe is one mission away from earning her soul. Nearly three centuries after her disastrous on-land escapade, the former mermaid has a final assignment: protect a marine biologist on his quest to save the oceans. Perhaps it’s pure coincidence that Varun Zale is the descendant of the prince she once chose not to kill.

Varun can’t explain how storms obey Ashe or why her eye color changes to match the tossing waves, but he suspects she is more than the mute ship captain she pretends to be. His growing fascination leads him from the shallows of a fairy tale to the depths of a mystery older than recorded time. In the midnight reaches of the ocean, monstrous titans stir. An unstoppable disease becomes a weapon in the hands of the mer-king.

Nothing Varun has ever imagined or believed about mermaids is true. And being wrong could cost him everything…

You will be swept away by this genre-blending masterpiece of urban fantasy, science fiction, fairy tales, and mythology. ONE-CLICK to dive under the sea today!

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New Release – Mage’s Legacy By Jade Kerrion & Rebecca Hamilton

Today I have a New Release for you, Mage’s Legacy, from the Cursed Seas Collection, by authors Rebecca Hamilton and Jade Kerrion.  I have read this and highly recommend it.

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He’s desperate. She’s a fraud. Together…they’re a disaster.

To save his siren clan from the ravaging sea serpents, Gabriel must seek the help of a mage to recover the Legacy Stone and heal the oceans. That’s how he finds himself at Kerina’s doorstep, begging for her aid, and grateful when she reluctantly agrees.

Now Gabriel and Kerina must survive the perils of the cursed seas and challenge the demonic Tua and his seven monstrous children for control of the Legacy Stone—a difficult enough task for a lone siren warrior and a powerful mage…

Except, Kerina’s not really a mage. The real mage died weeks before and hadn’t even been cold in her grave when Gabriel arrived desperate for her help. Kerina hadn’t exactly been eager to correct his mistake then, and now her lie of omission could leave the world in danger of complete extinction.

Kerina’s not sure how long she can keep up the ruse, and she’s running out of time to confess.

Fans of Kiera Cass, Neil Gaiman, and Faith Hunter will find this dystopian-fantasy siren adventure intensely addicting.

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New Release – Dangerous Doctor:A Medical Thriller by Barbara Ebel M.D.

Today I have a New Release for you, Dangerous Doctor: A Medical Thriller, book six in the Dr. Annabel Tilson  novels, written by my friend Baraba Ebel.

dangerous doctor

 

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Is Annabel Tilson’s imagination playing tricks on her? Or is Dr. Gillespie, the pediatrician she’s shadowing, a bit unusual?

Annabel’s last significant medical school rotation is upon her. Falling into the dependable role as a student in his private office, she watches, learns, and keeps her mouth shut.

˃˃˃ Although this book can stand alone, DANGEROUS DOCTOR is the riveting conclusion of the Dr. Annabel Tilson Series!

As many situations in the doctor’s office become suspect, Annabel’s boyfriend is immersed in her medical and personal life like never before. And for her young patients, there is nothing worse than being dragged into Dr. Gillespie’s office. The muck and mire from the contemptible doctor intensifies until it comes to a pivotal head.

˃˃˃ At the end of DANGEROUS DOCTOR, Annabel’s personal and medical school journey comes to a mournful, yet joyful, ending. You can stake your next office visit on it!

Scroll up and grab a copy of Dangerous Doctor today.

*****
This is the sixth book in the medical and personal adventures of Dr. Annabel Tilson, but each book can stand alone.
Book One: DEAD STILL
Book Two: DEADLY DELUSIONS
Book Three: DESPERATE TO DIE
Book Four: DEATH GRIP
Book Five: DOWNRIGHT DEAD
Book Six: DANGEROUS DOCTOR
An EBook Box Set for Books 1-3 and Books 4-6 is also available.

 

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