It's a Terrifying Tuesday here at the Sirens' Cove.
Don't forget your Forget-Me-Not tributes/photos are due October 23rd. Email them to Serena, and they will appear on the final Sirens' Post, October 31.
By now, you should be remembering to add your email to your comments so you don't miss out on the fabulous giveaways! Good for you!
The winner of the Touch of the Goddess Celtic Dragon Reading Giveaway is...
Samhain Sirens Blog: Samhain Divination Behind the Thinning Veilby Michele Warch http://witch-sway.blogspot.com/
There are many forms of divination available to us in order to make contact. I will share with you, briefly, a few that are a Samhain tradition and a few of my own practices. But, before we begin, I offer a few words of warning:
- When you invite in spirits, you may find that some have an energy that gives you an immediate ‘icky’ (or even frightened) feeling. Someone should immediately thank them for responding and direct them to leave. Be respectful but FIRM. It is often best to be specific in who and what you are inviting.
- It is imperative that you close any door you have opened to the spirit world. Failure to do so may allow free travel for any entity that finds its way to the door. You should do this in accordance with your training.
- If other people are present, plan accordingly. You will want to have enough experienced people to balance any newcomers. Its often best to place them about the area in a way that is distributed.
- Spirits do not necessarily communicate in a clear or concise manner, nor are they always predictable. Be flexible and prepared for the unexpected. Have a specific leader or leaders designed to be in charge of the experience to prevent confusion in the event of an anomaly.
A few methods of traditional divination bear mentioning. These are simple and most people can easily use them with little concern or worry.
- Apple divination. There are so many approaches to using apples to divine, here are a few favorites: 1) Place 13 apples in a large bowl of water, use your right hand to stir the water (clockwise) 3 times around. Let the apples come to a stop and look for shapes, symbols, or messages in their patterns. 2) Peel an apple, keeping the skin in all one piece, allowing it to drop to the ground when you finish. Look for shapes, symbols, or messages in the patterns of the peel where it has fallen.
- Scrying. Go to a natural water source (this could be your garden pond, or a large bowl or cauldron that you’ve filled with water; it should be relatively still water) under the light of the moon. The area should be quite dark other than the natural light of the stars. Light a candle and hold it over the water. Gaze softly onto the surface of the water, which will often resemble a black mirror under the moonlight. Notice what you see. Watch for images. (Variations: a. Drip the candle wax onto the surface of the water and look for patterns; b. Put the candle out in the water and watch for patterns in the smoke.)
- Pendulum. This is often a preferred method for making simple contact with the spirit world. You may use a pendulum board, or just ask the pendulum for direction. Any item which is heavy enough to weigh down a piece of thread may make a pendulum. A traditional approach was to thread a sewing needle with a piece of thread the length of your arm, to knot the thread into a loop, holding the thread at the knot and allowing the needle to hang down. Hold the thread still in front of you so that the needle is about the center of your body (think where your heart is). Ask the needle to show you your requested responses (yes/no, true/false, etc.). Once it has provided you with patterns for each, you may begin asking questions to get responses. Be sure to give the pendulum a chance to settle between responses and to be specific in your questions.
- Divining Rods/Dowsing. Rods can be made of nearly any substance. I prefer copper or brass, but plain old sticks can work quite well. Hold the rods loosely in each fist, with your elbows tucked tight in against your ribs. Follow the same directions as for the pendulum.
Here are a few of my personal practices. While some of them are quite traditional methods, I’ve found that they’ve served me quite well with a bit of practice.
- Automatic writing. This is an approach that just started happening to me, one day, but I certainly believe that it could be practiced and honed. Most instructions as to how to practice automatic writing suggest that you clear your mind and attempt to write nothing in particular. That never really worked for me. What did work: Sit in a quiet place (preferably outside and solitary) with something to write with and something to write on. Close your eyes and take several deep breaths. Focus, in your mind, on a question which you wish to ask. Breathe deeply and slowly. Open your eyes, placing the writing implement to the paper. Write the question. Then, begin writing what and why you want the answer to this, along with anything that seems relevant. This is called “stream-of-thought” writing. I practiced doing this as a part of a creativity program and found that, when looking back at my entries, there was a shift when it became clear that I was not the person writing. NOTE: I practiced this for approximately 6 months before I found this shift occurring; however, I wasn’t actively trying to make it happen.
- Aura reading. Seeing auras or energy fields can be tricky business. I found it most helpful to have someone stand in front of a relatively bright light (a bare light bulb hanging from the ceiling or a lamp with the shade removed) with all other light in the room dark. I would position them so that the bulb was hidden behind their body from my perspective. (This may require a bit of shifting around.) When I began practicing, I would look just above and beyond their left ear, softening my focus (this becomes easy with practice). Look for colors, energy patterns (they sometimes look like mist or waves), or light around the person’s body. Their head and shoulders are usually the areas that are most telling. Beware of the misconception that a person’s aura is one color. It is, in fact, a rainbow of colors and extends several feet out from the body. A healer may have strong colors emanating from their hands and hearts, as well. Look for disruptions or muddy colors in the field and what areas they are near to give an idea of what may be happening in someone’s life. Variation: Once you are able to see one person, try adding a second (or more) person and seeing the interactions of their fields/auras to each other. It is quite telling. Many people have the belief that certain colors indicate certain things in a field. I don’t agree. We are all different in our makeup and yellow around my head may indicate intellectual functioning. Around someone else’s, it may indicate pain. Learn to ask your internal intuition for meaning, as well as checking with those whose auras you are reading. There are many fine books on this topic that I would encourage you to pursue if it is of interest to you. NOTE: It is often easier to see the energy fields of plants, particularly trees, at first. Feel free to spend some time outside in dappled light with a softened focus.
- Dream interpretation/Oneirocracy. Dream interpretation is a field as wide as the variance in human imagination. There are approaches from the master psychiatrists and psychologists of the world, of mystics, yogis and others. I will explain a simple approach that I use. I encourage people to keep a dream journal. It should be kept immediately within reach upon awaking. The person should write down their dream, in its entirety, to the best of their recollection. I encourage them to use all of their senses – what did they see? Touch? Taste? Hear? Smell? How did they feel, emotionally? Describe everything. Then, I isolate each element and consider its symbolic meaning. There are volumes of websites, books, and professional resources on the symbology of dreams, but I do like Carl Jung and Sigmund Freud’s the best. Once we have the meanings of each piece of the dream, we (the person doing the interpretation and the dreamer) put it together into a meaningful context. This will typically reflect a difficulty currently occurring in the dreamer’s life, and may offer a new perspective on it. NOTE: Culture and personal experience highly influence the symbology of dreams. For instance, my pagan interpretation of a serpent will be widely varied from that of a Christian’s perspective. Remember that you are interpreting for the dreamer’s frame of reference. (Variation ideal for solitary interpretation of one’s own dream: Another popular approach is to look at each aspect of the dream as a variation of the dreamer. For instance, if I dream that I am driving down the road in a car, I am: me, the car, the road, the scenery, the weather, etc. Try evaluating how the dreamer feels as each of these things.)
Of course, not only could an individual blog be written about each of these approaches, we could write volumes of books on each to include their variances, theoretical perspectives, personal value systems, motivations, etc. If something strikes your fancy, I strongly encourage you to engage in further study on the topic. If I can be of assistance in pointing you in the right direction, please inquire! I enjoy intelligent conversation with like-minded folks.
Above all, please, enjoy your holiday! It is our New Year Celebration at Samhain and one to be valued through the company of beloveds and like-mindeds, as well as in ritual. I would also remind you that ALL divination methods are only tools. They are methods for us to connect to our spirit guides/inner knowing/intuition/deity/universal energy, or whatever terminology you use for the creative intelligence which binds us all. They allow us to open doorways to spirit. The true tool of divination is YOU, so if you have an agenda in the reading, expect it to rear its head. Instead, divine from a place of curiosity, respect, and helpfulness. I have found this to be the only successful way for me.
I don’t know about ya’ll, but I have yet to encounter a scarier theme than this from John Carpenter’s Halloween.
The Witches’ Kitchen by Autumn Earthsong
Apple-Cranberry Acorn Squash
1/4 tsp salt
2 cups apples, cored and chopped
3/4 cup fresh cranberries
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
2 TB butter, melted
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
Place squash cut side down in an ungreased 13” x 9” baking dish. Add one inch of hot water to the dish. Bake uncovered at 350* for 30 mins. Drain water from dish.
Turn squash over so cut side is up. Sprinkle with salt. Combine remaining ingredients in a small bowl and spoon into the squash evenly. Bake, uncovered for 40-50 more minutes or until squash is tender.
*Makes 4 servings.
Read my blog at www.autumnearthsong.com
Visit my herbal shop at www.etsy.com/shop/verbenalaneshoppe
Witch of the West Giveaway from Kindred Kollections
-Fits Apple iPad Mini, Kindle Fire 7", Kindle 6", Nook Simple Touch
-Fits any mini tablet or e-reader measuring 6" X 8" or smaller
-Sleeve/Case is fully lined to help protect the mini tablet/ e-reader
-Pleated pouch on the front with 6 pen slots and plenty of room to store the necessities.
-"Interoffice Memo" style closure with custom fabric covered buttons
-Measures Approximately 8 1/2" H x 6 1/2" W
-Is adorned with two embroidery designs, that of the Witch of the West (back) and her faithful subject, the flying monkey (front flap).
-Retails for $26.00
***This Mini Tablet/ E-Reader Sleeve/Case is intended to protect your tablet from scratches and dust. It will not protect against damage resulting from dropage or any other physical abuse.***
Spot clean with damp cloth.
This item was made using a MichellePatterns.Com sewing pattern
Embroidery Designs courtesy of UrbanThreads.Com
Rules: (READ CAREFULLY)
YOU MUST PROVIDE A VALID EMAIL ADDRESS. If you choose not to share it in the comments, please use the contact form at the top of the page to provide your email address. You must provide your email address once per giveaway.
Drawing is held by random number generation and winner will be notified in email (that's why you have to have an email address listed). Announcement will be made in tomorrow's post.
Note: These giveaways are open to the U.S., Canada and where allowable. Void where prohibited.
Canadian residents, please pay close attention as by law, you have to use a different set of rules. Not to worry, we have you covered :)
CANADIANS READ HERE: You will be given the same number of entries for answering the following (remember, we STILL NEED YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS):
Which alcoholic beverage is most consumed by Canadians?
1. Go to the Kindred Kollections Site . Look over the site and tell us which product you like best.
EXTRA ENTRIES: (USE SEPARATE COMMENTS. If you throw them all into one comment, it counts as one entry only)
2. Be a follower of this blog. Comment that you are following us.
3. Like the Sirens FB page (come let us know you did in comments)
4. Like/Get Notifications for the Kindred Collections Facebook Page. Let us know you did.
5. Blog about this giveaway (comment with the url for your blog entry)
6. Tweet about this giveaway (come back and give us the url for your tweet)
So, all in all, you get 6 entries for this giveaway! The deadline for entries is midnight eastern time (11 Central, 10 Mountain, 9 Pacific) tonight. Announcement tomorrow, same time, same bat channel ;)
Questions? Email Serena.