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The Temple Within

Musings of a polytheistic witch

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Witchcraft

Getting Ready For Harvest

I am not digging the weather we’ve been having here in south central Wisconsin. We have had tons of rain and it is pretty humid. I think the ragweed has hit because my allergies are going insane. Late July always brings the same thing every year, a longing for autumn. Autumn is my favorite season and late summer is the season when I am the most house bound due to allergies.

One of the themes of autumn is the harvest holidays. This all kicks off in the late summer with Lammas/Lughnasadh or as I think of it Demeter’s Day. This turn of the wheel has long been one of my favorites. I have fond memories of making corn dollies with my kids and coven mates. Lammas brings to mind good meals and good times with friends and family. It also makes me think about what I want to harvest. My experience has been that each of the three fall harvest holidays grows in intensity with regards to what I bring in. This is also the time of year when I start to think about what I want to let go of. Slowly over the coming months, it will become more and more clear. Usually a day or so before Samhain I will know exactly what is required and I will be ready to throw it into the cauldron.

I think I will start my prep by doing some meditating on Demeter. I may start a list of things to harvest and release as well. Do you celebrate this turn of the wheel? I will post some pictures of my work as I move through this time.

D

Stength

I know I have not been posting much lately. I feel bad about that because this blog matters to me. I have been absent because I have been busy with the task of restoration. Morrigan has been my muse and Bridget has helped me strike my target over and over. I decided that since I’m moving a bit slower today, head cold, I would sit down and pound out an update.

One of the biggest lessons I have learned through this process is the more fully I become myself the more my strength is revealed. My current struggle is with my voice. I feel like I am acting from a place of power and I’m seeing some wonderful results. When I start to struggle is when I need to raise my voice to be heard or when I need to speak up in disagreement. I have been doing some pretty intense political organizing on the grassroots level and let me tell you it can be hard to be heard even when you are all on the same team. Add to that being a woman and being Mexican American, and you can start to see how it might be hard. The universe is putting me in situations where I have to fight to be heard and it has been pretty challenging.

On the up side, I have been enjoying life more and I feel like I’m well on my way to meeting my goals this year. The wheel keeps turning and soon it will turn towards harvest. I have a feeling my harvest will be bountiful and challenging. I just had my 47th birthday and I think this might be one of my best years yet.

Revisiting Restoration

Every Samhain I pick a word of the year. That word will guide my journey until the next Samhain. My word for this year is Restoration. I knew this word would be a tough one but it kept coming up over and over. If there is one thing I know, you should not ignore the Universe. Restoration has been hard to get a handle on. The first half of the year was not easy. That makes sense, in order to restore you have to remove dead wood and drive fresh nails. In order to restore you have to know what you are restoring to. During this process, I have spent time combing over the past and trying to recall the parts of myself that have been lost. I have examined relationships and projects I once cared about. I have been thinking about ambition, passion, and fear. Things really started to heat up around the last Mercury retrograde, then things became really hot at the last full moon in Scorpio. Since then I have been feeling really overwhelmed by the energy of this work. Do you ever feel like the gods are f*cking with you? That is how I have been feeling. I have been caught off guard in some pretty uncomfortable ways lately. These situations have been in my face and hard to run from or ignore. No kid gloves for me or subtlety. I have been asking for clarity and Morrigan has dished it up. Be careful what you ask for… Freedom has also been a theme this year, kind of running in the background. I have started asking myself, why do I feel like a caged bird, and when did I feel freedom. What was happening in my life during that time, why is that gone now, and how do I cultivate it again.

People hurt me. When they do I run from other things that I love. It isn’t the people from my past that I miss so much as the work, the projects, and the purpose. I am a sensitive soul and I have allowed aggressive people to take away my power and other things I once felt passionate about. I have to learn not to give them my power, I have to learn to tune out the haters. This might sound simple but trust me it is some of the hardest spiritual work I have ever done. An old friend described me the other day as fearless, courageous, brave, amazing, and tenacious. I was dumbfounded, I don’t know that version of myself anymore. I’m searching for her now. Morrigan says there is work to be done and I better get ready.

D

May Is Here!

May is finally here and I am so happy to see this month. The skies are much less gray and gloomy. I have had the opportunity to be out in nature and that is always good for the soul. Beltane was a quiet one this year but I’m not complaining. I was able to rest and call in some good energy. My focus this month has been on calling in male energy. I have fallen out of the habit of working with male deities. I only realized this morning that the full moon will be upon us in a couple of days. It falls in Scorpio which is not the best placement for me. My head is buzzing with ideas for the full moon but I will need to proceed with caution.

My Morrigan tools are still a work in progress. The doll is finished and now I am working on a wand. I’m also about to start another piece that will act as a trivet for my altar. Lastly, I am focused on Morrigan’s shapeshifting aspect. I have been rereading and working through Stephanie Woodfield’s book “Celtic Lore and Spellcraft of the Dark Goddess, Invoking The Morrigan.” There is so much juicy stuff in there! All of this work with Morrigan has reminded me of the power I have and has encouraged me to work more magick.

I have nothing earth-shattering to report. The world has continued to turn and I continue to try to connect to Spirit. I will post some new photos soon!

D

Morrigan Doll

I made a Morrigan doll per her request and I kind of love it! It was a process considering Mercury is retro and so I struggled mightily with the simple task of sewing. Now I plan to move onto the task of making a Morrigan wand. I found a lovely stick I want to use it for that purpose. I feel like I have been infused with energy and inspiration. Along with that, I feel like my connection to the divine is wide open. This often happens leading up to Beltane so I’m not super surprised, but I am delighted. I’m trying to take advantage of the energy boost while I have it. Breakthroughs are wonderful and I’m very grateful right now.

D

Full Moon Musings: Knock Knock

I’m feeling super energized! My practice has been infused with fresh inspiration. My matron deity has been knocking on my door, and that knocking has become louder and louder. She (Morrigan) knows how to get my attention and I know better than to ignore her. Because of the recent flurry of activity with her, I know there are things I need to do. I feel she has laid in my path a bunch of things to inspire me and maybe make the road a bit easier. I’m grateful.

I have been so stuck. I have not known how to move ahead, or even what I wanted to move ahead towards. I’m still not sure but at least I have some vision. I can see the ways this fresh vision ties into the old visions I once had. I feel like I can capture some of my old desires but with a fresh twist. There is much work to be done, but it feels good to have something new to sink my teeth into. I am aware of how vague this all sounds, as my vision becomes clearer I will share more.

What are your full moon plans? My wishes for you are full moon blessings and safe passage through this retrograde period.

D

Making Time For Spirituality

I have been neglecting my spirituality. It isn’t that I haven’t been practicing, it is that I have not been engaging my heart. Recently I spent a lot of time working on my heart and I feel like this is the final phase. My practice has become very practical and results driven. That Capricorn moon of mine probably has something to do with this. Something has been missing and today it hit me like a ton of bricks. It is my devotion. I’m devoted to my craft but my devotion to my gods has been slipping. I think this is all a part of the heart issue I was having in other areas of my life. That chakra was so blocked and I had built up some pretty serious walls around my heart. It had become hard for me to receive love from others and my creativity was nowhere to be found.

I think this was the last hiding place for me because I have been so hurt by pagans. This healing process has been long and each time I think I have reached the end there is more there. I fear I have let the pain of stepping away from community drain my passion and devotion for my gods. I have to remind myself that community is indeed separate from my relationship with my deities. I am still a priestess of Morrigan. I may be working in other ways but that will never change. I was reminded today of when she chose me and how I once interacted with her.

Once this all hit me, I decided that today is the day. I think one of the reasons my devotion has slipped is because I simply do not make time for it. I do all the practical stuff, the stuff that meets needs and gives answers. What is left behind is time to just be with Morrigan. Time to meditate on her and tend to my altar. I have been telling myself that there isn’t time for all that, but it has really been about me not wanting to access my heart.

I did a lovely meditation today and I feel very renewed by it. I practiced having an open heart and I let myself breathe and accept what my guide had to give. No one ever said being a witch was easy! I am grateful for the struggle.

D

This and That

I am sorry I have been gone for so long. I have been struggling through a bad case of viral bronchitis. I’m finally feeling a bit better now. I don’t have a lot to share today except that I realized this morning that Beltane is right around the corner! *runs around the room cheering* I love Beltane and I’m looking forward to the energy shift! Here in Wisconsin green things are popping up all over. I’m so glad that March is over and May will be here soon! Here are some old Beltane photos to get you ready for the season.

 

D

Challenges of the Queen Archetype

I have been working with the queen archetype for a long time. Something has felt off to me and so now I’m trying to identify where I am being challenged. When I really think about it I have always identified with the queen, sometimes more than others. Being alone so much during childhood caused me to develop this archetype. I was the queen of my life and domain because it was just me and my dog. My parents were mostly absent. I chose how my day-to-day played out in a way that most children never experience. From an early age, I managed my kingdom and took on responsibility.

Now that the duties of motherhood are passing through my fingers I know it is time to move more into the role of queen. For about 5 years now I have been feeling pulled in this direction. The issue is that it never feels quite right. When I look back to other points in my adulthood I can see myself playing the role of queen even if the mother archetype was center stage. So why am I struggling so much now?

So far this is what I have figured out, due to my bad experiences in the pagan community, being in relationships where I gave up my power and raising teens I have lost touch with the queen archetype. Realizing how this archetype is tied to my childhood and that it has been with me my whole life brings into focus why I have been feeling so off lately. When you are not able to fully be yourself, when you are shutting parts of yourself down, then you’re going to feel off.

When trying to figure this all out I had to look at the shadow side of the queen to see if I had taken on any of those characteristics. The shadow of the queen is:

Demanding

Arrogant

Black and white thinking

Unmerciful

Unable to receive

Cold

Distant

I always struggle with being arrogant, because I am so aware of that I do a good job of keeping it in check. I may be a tad more cold and distant but not to an extreme. I don’t think I have taken on much of the shadow side. I have simply shut down that part of myself. So now the question is how do I draw that energy back to me?

One thing that has been made clear to me as I have studied this archetype is that the queen must be able to receive. Receiving is a tough challenge for me to take on. I struggle to truly receive love and to trust enough to let people help me. A queen has to feel empowered. This is a daily challenge for me, in some ways I feel super empowered and in other ways, it is clear to me that I have given my power away. Lastly, the queen cultivates purpose. This is the meat of my struggles. This empty nest has left me seeking purpose and not being sure of myself in this area for the first time in my life.

Well, I guess I have my full moon work cut out for me! Lucky for me the moon is in the majestic sign of Leo. The moon in Leo is one of my favorite placements. The lunar eclipse is a great time for openings and closings, and it is an explosive time for creativity. Warm up your cauldrons this is a good time to get some work done!

D

 

 

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