Tuesday, 8 May 2018

Back in Beautiful England!

Merry meet one and all!

Beltane and its a blue sky over the fields that border our village.
Photo: Susanne Warnett

Well it has been quite a while since I last blogged, and a lot has happened since then, but the headline is we have moved back to the UK after being stationed in the USA for almost six years.

We had such an amazing adventure in the US, and were able to visit amazing places like New Orleans, Tombstone, Salem and many amazing natural sites, but it was a bit like living in an amazing bubble, and we always knew the time would come when it came to an end and we would be moved back to the UK.

So here we are, back on home turf.  It's my first time living in Norfolk and I absolutely love it!  There is so much history to this part of England, from Boudicca to Matthew Hopkins and the witch hunts, and the energy is so invigorating.  We're not far from the ancient city of Norwich, and Ely is less than an hour away, but it's the fertility of the land that takes my breath away.  Seriously, everywhere you look it is green and verdant - a bit of a change from the Florida Panhandle or the Mojave desert!

We arrived just before Easter and managed to visit family, which meant I had to persuade my cat that he didn't want to live with my parents anymore and to come home with us.  He's settled in really quickly, as I expected him to, and straight away was back to his tricks every time I got my tarot cards out: once a witch's cat, always a witch's cat!

Even witch's familiars love the sun!
We love it here so much that we are looking to put down some roots and buy a house for the first time in over a decade, so in between tarot clients I am trying to keep on top of the admin, appoint conveyancers, find the perfect house... basically we're not bothering to unpack!  I've got my desk and the computer set up, and a few of my witchy supplies, but I haven't really found a space for my working altar yet, but the land has welcomed me and that will do as a blessing for now.

In the meantime I am back at work with my tarot clients, so if you were wondering how to make the most of the next few weeks and months, get in touch and I can either email you a reading or we can work via video, just click on the link at the top of the page to book a session with me.

Aside from the tarot work, I'm going to update this blog monthly or as the sabbats roll around, so if you have any questions about witchcraft or tarot you want answering, let me know, or if there are specific topics you'd like me to cover I can do that too.

Until next time everyone!

Blessed be )0(

Thursday, 21 September 2017

Autumn, Balance and Preparation

Merry meet once more my friends - I cannot believe that it is September already and the season of mists and mellow fruitfulness is upon us!

Photo from https://www.woodlandtrust.org.uk/
September has always been one of my favourite months, despite it meaning I had to go back to school as a child.  Those long walks along woods drapes with wisps of mist, my breath just visible as the sun climbs high enough to warm the land, it getting so warm during the afternoon that you wonder why you bothered to grab a coat that morning, yep I love it all.

Even those of us who do not follow a nature-based spirituality can't help noticing the changes.  Maybe it's in the fading sun tans, or the need for a jumper when you go out.  For some it will be the change in produce available in the supermarkets and farmers' markets, as we say goodbye to such summer delights as tomatoes, courgettes and sardines but greet local apples, plums, oysters and venison.

For me, the most exciting change (OK, apart from the food) is the changing of the leaves.  I really missed them when Mr Witch Hazel and I were stationed in Florida and Southern California, but I hadn't realised how much until last autumn when, settled in Maryland on the East Coast, I saw my first proper autumn in four years and got a bit emotional.  I hadn't realised just how much my magick, which has died back so much since moving to the USA, is tied into the seasons, so to feel my power rushing through me again was a real relief.  I know things in nature are cyclical, so when I felt a real disconnection from my spirituality and magick here in the US I didn't beat myself up but used the time to focus on other areas.  I trained with a Lightworker who helped me to focus my energy and open up to working with the spirit realm, I learnt more about Voodoo and the Creole magick of New Orleans, I took up yoga again, and I honed my skills in the home, learning how to make breads, preserve the harvest and create unique quilts to keep us warm.

But the Autumn Equinox, known as Mabon in many witchy circles, is a time to find balance.  Like the trees about to face winter storms, we must decide what no longer serves us and shed those things, be they clutter from our homes or clutter from our souls.  For my husband and I this has already begun, and if you follow me on Twitter you may notice I am going through our house and putting loads of stuff in eBay ahead of moving back to the UK in the spring.  But it is also a time for me to spiritually clean house. What emotions or memories am I holding onto that are holding me back or even hurting me?  Do I need to make amends for anything in order to move on?  In a similar vein have I let things slip that I will regret further down the line, or is it time to move on with something?  These are all questions the equinox force us to face, and with the new moon coinciding with the equinox this is the perfect time to shed whatever is weighing us down and prepare for the dark months.

Blessed be )0(

Wednesday, 6 September 2017

The Dark Trio of Tarot Part 3 - The Devil

There are a few tarot cards that seem to have permeated pop culture.  In the first post in this series I wrote about the most notorious of them all, the Death card, while in part two I examined The Tower.  Here we will complete the dark trio of tarot with an examination of The Devil.

The Devil collective
Having read the first two articles we understand the differences between the two cards of change, namely Death and The Tower; I often see The Devil as something of a bridge between them in many ways.  Taking the Tarot de Marseille as our starting point, we have the recognisable image of a winged and horned figure who is both male and female, sword in hand, with a man and a woman chained at its feet, and the Old English Tarot follows the same traditional imagery.  The idea here is to demonstrate our bondage to our daemons and the way they enslave us; to those encountering this card in centuries past in particular, this card literally represented the devil from the bible and all the temptation for sin that that embodied.

The Devil, from Old English Tarot by Maggie Kneen Published by U.S.Games Systems, Inc
Le Diable, from the Tarot de Marseille ©1993 Funtime Ltd
The Devil, from the Deviant Moon Tarot by Patrick Valenza Published by U.S. Games Systems, Inc
The Deviant Moon tarot has a rather chilling red devil, still with horns and wings, but this time in place of the chained figures he dances over a volcanic world destroyed by our obsessions and greed, suggesting our selfish desires for more are not just destroying us individually but globally; we are being driven by these lusts and they are tearing us apart.

The Devil, from the Tyldwick Tarot by Neil Lovell.
© Malpertuis Designs Ltd 2013
In the Tyldwick Tarot, The Devil is my favourite card of the deck. In a darkened room there is a mirror on the wall, daring us to stand before it and face our inner daemons alone.  This is very clever because in many ways it is the most honest challenge of all.  The seeds of our destruction are reflected back at us and it is up to us to battle them.

The Guardian, from Wildwood Tarot
by Mark Ryan and John Matthews
Published by Connections

With the Wildwood Tarot we are faced with the skeleton of a bear reared up on its back legs and blocking the path to a cave.  As scary as this is, we note he is not The Devil, he is The Guardian.  He is just a set of bones, yet in his open jaw we see our own primal fears flare up, and fear can take us over if we don't recognise our instinctive reaction in body and soul and overcome that.  Only then will we be able to pass The Guardian and be brave enough to finally explore the darkest realms of our subconscious, hidden within the cave.

This is the way in which The Devil can bridge the gap between the Death and Tower cards.  Often we can sense change coming in our lives, but fear can hold us back and stop us from taking action to determine the outcome, so when the change does occur it appears unforeseen, traumatic and beyond our control.

To give an example, perhaps a relationship is no longer nurturing us, yet we fear being single or a change in our material standing.  We cling on with our fingertips instead of facing the truth and resolving the problem, either by a conscious effort to make things better or both agreeing the relationship has run its course.  By not facing our fears we reject the energy of the Death card and instead the outcome is destructive and cruel; we either find ourselves trapped in an unhappy relationship that fails to satisfy on any level or we find ourself unceremoniously dumped with seemingly no notice, looking at the shattered remnants of our future life and wondering what happened.

By consulting with the tarot at the first suggestion that something is amiss, this dark trio can actually work in your favour despite being rather feared. Even the most exciting change has an element of fear attached to it, but by taking responsibility for our lives and our choices we can ensure the outcome is one we desire rather than one we fear.

Blessed be )0(

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