Trying something new

Hey guys, I don’t think I’ve mentioned it yet, but I’ve been living off-grid for the last month, and it’s really inspired me to focus more on renewable energy, sustainable resources, and starting to make everything from scratch.  These are the things I think about when I’m hauling water so I can have a shower.  Seriously.  This is my life now.

Anyhow, I’ve started a sister blog to this one, called “Reclaiming the Wild” and I really think you should check it out.  I’ll continue posting the usual suspects here, PBP, poetry, recipes, foraging (oh my god, it’s almost that season), and herbal knowledge, but head on over there for posts on how to compost, what it means to live ‘green’, and whatever else my brain comes up with.

Oh, and I’m taking contributions.  So if you want to be a regular part of a eco-sustainable blogging community, give me a shout.  Or if you just want to guest post, or submit something you think is appropriate.  It’s a baby project, but I’d like it to grow.

Thanks!

Trying something new

PBP2014: D – For Divination

Divination has played a large part in my pagan lifestyle.  When I first discovered Wicca (as we all do), the first thing I learned was how to shield.  But the second…the second thing I learned was how to divine the future.  I started with throwing stones in the playground, and it transformed into using the Ouija Board (until my mother found out, and banned it from the house).  And that transformed into quartz crystals, and finally, tarot cards.

I can still remember my first tarot deck – a sultry purple, kept hidden in my underwear drawer until I felt comfortable enough to come out with my first altar (and that, I remember too – a pathetic thing, with four candles and a mirror – it took me a long time to realize that the “Wiccan” way of doing things meant little and less to me).  The Mythic Tarot, a play on images of my favourite Grecian myths, which lead me and guided me through the bulk of my teenage years, and well into my early twenties.

I can still remember my trepidation, as I realized whenever I used the cards, they told me of ill fortunes to come – nearly all of which came true.  I remember pulling the Death card, and the Devil, more times than I can count.  I remember them telling me over and over, no matter how many different questions I asked, that my life would be a struggle, and I would come out stronger for it.  My first breakup: you will come out stronger for this.  My first surgery: you will come out stronger for this. The first time I failed a course: you will come out stronger for this.

I didn’t believe them.  For the first time in my life, I didn’t believe them.  Nothing could be worse than this, my young adult brain thought.  This is the end of you.

And I put the cards away. I hid them, sequoistered within the confines of my altar cabinet, collecting dust.  Coming with me move after move, and never being touched for years.

I became afraid of my cards.  They only predicted the bad things to come, and I didn’t want to know.  I wanted to live in the present, or be stuck in the past, but I definitely did not want to know the future.  The future was a problem for my future self (and in some ways, I still believe this.)

Finally, two years ago, I bought a new deck of cards.  And I finally have a new understanding.  They don’t predict the bad things in my future.  They don’t predict anything.  They are a tool which lets me know, that if I follow on the course I’m on, they are one of a thousand likely outcomes.  Now, sometimes my fortune comes true, and sometimes, in a rare while, I make a conscious choice not to let that future become true.  And just sometimes, a bad thing still happens, but rather than wallow in my own self-destruction, I look for the other reasons that the fates have led me here, and I try to find joy in it.

Now, I have one tarot deck, two Rune sets (both handmade, one by me, and one by a long-distance acquaintance), and I can read the Homeric Oracle*.

And now, I let the Fates guide me, but I don’t let the Fates control me.

*For more information, please see my guest post over at nuannaarpoq.wordpress.com 

PBP2014d

PBP2014: D – For Divination

Pagan Blog Project 2014: C – Crystals

Just a quick and dirty little rhyme for C…and yes, ‘botheration’ is a word!

Amethyst is a calming stone,
Bloodstone lets your courage known,
Carnelian carries the message of love,
Dendritic Agate resembles a tree’d grove.

Emerald is a blissful gem,
Fluorite does not condemn,
Garnet enhances ones internal fire,
Howlite dispels selfishness and ire

Ivory leaves anxiety behind,
Jasper, of which there are many kinds,
Kyanite facilitates mediation,
Labradorite facilitates transformation.

Moonstone is laden with feminine energy,
Nephrite balances opposite synergy.
Obsidian grounds your heart to Earth,
Pyrite increases your wallet’s girth.

Quartz is master of them all,
Rhodochrosite answers a healer’s call,
Schorl repels negativity,
Topaz promotes creativity.

Ulexite magnifies a botheration,
Vanadinite provides deep meditation.
W, X, and Y have no common minerals,
Zoisite brings out your potential.

PBP2014d

Pagan Blog Project 2014: C – Crystals

Pagan Blog Project 2014 – B for Brewing

I’m still a little behind with the Pagan Blog Project , but I’m trying to catch up.  Today’s topic is BREWING.

Brewing is a favourite hobby of mine, and I feel that it relates to my path because I am taking the substance of the earth, and turning it into a euphoric drink, which I then in turn – drink with, cook with, return back to the earth in the form of offering, and which I gift to friends (who are also of the earth).

While I have yet to try beer-making, I have made mead, dandelion wine, port and cider (both of which are in the process of being made as we speak).

According to Wikipedia, archaeological evidence suggests that brewing has been around for over 9000 years (over 9000.  I thought it too.)  That’s 9000 years of taking a sugar (be it honey, fruit, dextrose, or sucrose), letting it sit in water in a jug, and leaving it be, up to the fates of the wild yeasts that float around in the atmosphere, and then coming back to it sometime later and finding a product which is drastically different, and positively intoxicating.

It’s only natural that one would want to repeat the process, and give thanks to the gods, who took their pot of honey, and turned it into nectar.

20130529-195836.jpg

 

(from last summer)

PBP2014d

Pagan Blog Project 2014 – B for Brewing

Pagan Blog Project 2014: A – Artemis

Surprise! This was my big plan.  I’m a few weeks behind, but I propose to catch up.  I’ve attempted a few times in the past to do the PBP, and have always met with failure.  This is because I have already tried to copy some of the great pagan bloggers, and write essays and beautiful rhetorics, and explain my beliefs in a public way.

But that’s not who I am, and that’s not how I work.  I work in prose and poesy.  I take words, wonderful words and wind them up and down the lines on the page like magic.  I take meter, and throw it out of the window, in favour of alliteration, allegories, and whimsy.

So that’s how I’m going to do this year’s Pagan Blog Project.

Starting with Artemis, who is the heart of my heart.

***

She wanders

(silently)

through the forest
her feet lingering in the loam
as laughter from the lips of the wind
and joy from the mouths of the moss
caress her, howling
the wild of the night
and the smell of the hunt are hers.

Her wolves they –
– bark, growl and hiss
as antlers peak through the leaves…
and tremble.

(Precision and power)

a gift to the stag from the sister of the sun,
whose very heartbeat is an offering.

(An offering!)

Of blood to the mouths of the moss,
Of breath to the lips of the wind,
Of soul to the sex of the universe,
who accept such gifts greedily.

She wanders.

PBP2014d

Pagan Blog Project 2014: A – Artemis

Food: Flourless Blender Pancakes with Blueberries

Okay, I’ll admit it.  I forgot entirely about this website.  But if you’ll notice, I’ve changed how it looks, and I’ve got (hopefully) big plans for it in the upcoming year.  As I drift further and further into winter – and yes, it’s still very much winter where I now live – I drift further and further away from the earth, and into the time-sink that is known as my new 9-5 job.  Sitting down here, sipping on some lemonade to remind me of sunnier days (well, it’s SUNNY, it’s just not WARM), I am reminded of the little things that float through my life like dust motes in the air.  

Little, important dust motes.

So look for some big changes in the upcoming future, and in the meantime, get your witchy self into the kitchen, pull out that big ol’ blender (or in my case, your Magic Bullet), and delight in this little recipe I found on the world wide web.

Magic Bullet.  Get it?

Flourless Blender Pancakes with Blueberries, adapted from Gluten Free Blondie

Ingredients (serves 1)
1 ripe banana

2 egg whites
1/3 cup oats
1 tbsp apple sauce
1 tsp ground flax seed (optional)
splash of vanilla
1/2 tsp cinnamon
dash nutmeg
frozen wild blueberries (that I picked last summer)
Instructions
Add banana and egg whites to the blender and blend for about 15 seconds, until they’re completely combined and a little frothy.
Add the rest of the ingredients, except for the blueberries. This includes: oats, apple sauce, flax seed, vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg. Blend for another 10 seconds or so until the ingredients form a consistent batter, and the oats are broken up a bit. (You may need to jostle the blender a few times to make sure nothing gets stuck at the bottom.) Mix in blueberries with a spoon, so the batter gets all over them.*
Place a small, non-stick skillet over medium heat and coat with cooking spray. Once skillet is hot, pour in the pancake batter and, if necessary, evenly spread out the batter with a rubber spatula.
Immediately reduce the heat to low, cover with a lid, and cook for 5 minutes. Once the bottom of the pancake is nicely browned and the top is set, carefully flip the pancake and cook for an additional 30 seconds or so.
Slide the pancake onto a plate, add your favorite toppings and eat!(in my case, heaps of peanut butter, or a drizzle of maple syrup)
*original recipe says to add blueberries in the pan right after you pour the batter…but I found my blueberries stuck to the pan when I did this, even after greasing it, even after using a non-stick pan.
Food: Flourless Blender Pancakes with Blueberries