by Aurora Starr
(my personal decisions and path)
First of all you should know that when I came out as a Christian witch I was mocked and cast away by both Christians and Pagans! It is not an easy life.
You should also know that my path, my values, my beliefs they are constantly changing! So what I believe today may have evolved into something new by tomorrow! Keep that in mind.
Also, if you are thinking about combining these two religions as I have done, you should know that you are free to choose what you believe. You do not necessarily have to believe as I do. That is why when asked about my religion I always say "Pagan," because I am very eclectic and borrow from many different religions.
I celebrate both Christian holidays and the Pagan Sabbath. I believe that the one true way to live is simple; abide the rede, the three fold law, keep close to the workings of Karma and the universal mother Earth, and every decision you make, make it with a pure heart. That is my faith in a nutshell!
I do believe in the Christian God. As of currently I am working out a few concepts or theories on this particular sanction of my belief system. Here are those concepts or ideas.
Concept One: There is only one God. This is the supreme power of all things. It is both male and female, all races, all religions, or it is none. This theory is based simply on this, If God is God off all people and things how can he be a white man? How could he be a black woman? He is the God of all races so he must be all races or none in my opinion.
Concept Two: There is only one God, but there are many different faces of God. Much like the Hindu, this concept is based on the fact the God has many faces and each face is God/dess of a particular thing. There is still only one supreme being but several ways to relate to that being.
Concept Three: There is a multitude of Gods and Goddesses. In Genesis in the bible it is said that God made man in his own image. If so then why are women and men anatomically different? Are we not both in the image of God? Also on this one I will refer to the ten Commandments. God says, "Ye shall have no other God above me." Does this not lead us to believe that there are other gods? And if there are other gods then there must be female deities as well, don't you think? So I kind of take this concept as my belief right now. For me, it is kind of like in Greek Mythology, Zeus was the head honcho. He was always prayed to first, respected the most, feared the most, but after that the people were free to worship the other Gods. Maybe that is what God meant by that commandment.
Another aspect that people say is a sin and in the bible is Homosexuality. First of all I do not believe this to be in the bible. I believe God destroyed Sodom and Gomorra (please excuse my spelling) because the city was wicked. They were wicked because they raped! It never says they were wicked because they were gay, that is just how it seems to be interrupted by most people.
I also believe in Satan, something Pagans do not usually believe in. I won't go as far to say that I believe there is an actual entity called Satan, but I know there is definitely a darker force out there. There is something where no good comes from. I'm not sure why I believe this so strongly, maybe it is just because I was raised in Christianity? I'm not sure, but today I know that I believe it very much.
Another major belief that I hold very near to my heart is this, It is NOT okay to harass or bash someone for their religious beliefs! This is absolutely uncalled for. You never put someone down because they disagree with you! Freedom of religion, means every religion. It applies to everyone! If a Christian tells you Jesus loves you, don't start a fight just say thank you. Now on the other hand, if a Christian tells you that you are satanic and going to hell, and they just will not leave you alone, that is harassment. Do not take it laying down! Don't go down to their level, but go through the proper channels so you do not have to deal with that anymore!
This is not an easy decision to make. I have spent the last six or so years bouncing back in forth between Christianity and Paganism. For me, I feel like this is the answer. I have finally found some peace! I wish you all well on your spiritual journey and blessed be!
Disappointment and Failure on your Spiritual Path
by Triss Dunleavy
Disappointment & Failure
So many people become disillusioned after several failed attempts at visualization, magic,
path working etc. and it doesn't help when others seem to have such incredible and mystical experiences at the drop of a hat.
The truth is that those who feel they have failed are usually further along than those who exaggerate and overstate their findings. Failure has to be expected (unless you are one of the very few who are highly sensitive or psychic) and it is the first step on the ladder to higher things. If you have good intentions hen once on the ladder you might have to wait at each rung but you will not come off. So even if your first experiments put you off the track for some time, maybe years, you will be drawn back eventually, unlike those who like to
sensationalize and pretend. Once they give up they are unlikely to return, at least not in this life.
Very few people, who first come to the path, will find it easy to contact spirit guides, work magic or do trance work etc. so it is best to lower your expectations as much as possible. The most important thing is to bring your life closer to nature and to enjoy this contact with the goddess/god. Everything else will take time, dedication, intent, belief and lots of practice.
When you come to a standstill or you get bored - STOP and leave it for a while, maybe try something else but don't allow yourself to disbelieve just because you haven't got instant results. When you are ready, go back and have another go. If you want instant magic then look for the magic in nature and for the things within yourself that feel magical. The more you work magic with good intent the more you
realize that the greatest magic is spiritual development - inner wisdom. The biggest changes you can make are changes within yourself and unity with the goddess/god. Don't forget that one of the strongest forces, if not the strongest, is love and everyone is capable of that.
Planetary Ritual for Yule: Magical Astrology by Sarolta
by Sarolta DeFaltay-Bell
The following is an excerpt from the book:
Magical Astrology Guide 2000 by Sarolta DeFaltay-Bell, ©1999. 2001 Edition available at: http://www.moonspells.com
The Yuletide season is drawing near; as the nights grow longer and darker, we have an opportunity to review and complete the current cycle during these final weeks of
the waning year. Rituals of purification have been traditional in many cultures just before the Winter
Solstice, to prepare the body, mind and spirit for a conscious rebirth in awareness and focus.
The Winter Solstice marks the time in our yearly cycle
when the Sun is reborn again, and darkness is dispelled:
the beginning of the waxing phase of the year. It is the birth of the Sun Goddess,
Luciana, who grants wishes to
those who light fires in her name, and in her role as patroness of midwifery, assists us in our rituals of rebirth.
Astrology and the magical path have long shared a history, and can add clarity and focus when used together. Every planetary alignment holds an opportunity for growth and expanded awareness, and contains symbolism that is universally shared. By meditating on current planetary themes, we can tune in to the archetypal energy inherent therein, and apply it experientially to our lives, through ritual, meditation, and the gradual unfolding of our own personal myth.
The astrological charts of the Solstices and Equinoxes
have been read by astrologers since ancient times for
news of the upcoming season, especially as it pertains
to the well-being of nations, their leaders, and the condition of the people. Ingress charts (as they are
called) are drawn for the exact moment the Sun enters
one of the four cardinal signs: Capricorn, Aries, Cancer
and Libra (Winter, Spring, Summer, Autumn). Cardinal
energy is initiating, and an excellent time for magickal workings, as practitioners of earth spirituality have
known for a long, long time.
Amaterasu: Japanese; arrows, kites
Bast: Egyptian Cat Goddess; represents beneficent power of the Sun; joy, music, dancing
Igaehindvo: Cherokee Sun Goddess
Hsi-Ho: Chinese, "Mother of the Suns"
Knowee: Australian Aborigine Goddess
Lucina: Roman; birth, midwifery
Nahar: Syrian Sun Goddess
Sapas: Phoenician; "Torch of the Gods"
Sekhmet: ("The Powerful") Egyptian Lion-Headed Goddess, represents the destructive power of the Sun
Shapash: Sumerian Sun Goddess
Suwa: early Arabian Sun Goddess
Wurusemu: Hittite; Goddess of Battles
Yhi: Australian Aborigine Goddess
Yuletide Herbal Lore
Bay Laurel: write wishes on bay leaves and burn in Yule fire (or put into incense)
Blessed Thistle: use in incense or ritual cup to invoke the newly born Sun.
Chamomile:To invoke solar energy, use in incense, ritual bath or cup.
Frankincense: Solar incense for purity, strength; use oil on orange/gold candle.
Holly: Decorate the altar for protection and devotion; burn at Candlemas.
Hyssop: Spiritual bathing, clarity, washing ritual items and temple space.
Ivy: Fidelity, velour, victory; Yule altar decoration burned at Candlemas.
Juniper: Purification, potency, love, psychic powers; use berries in Yule incense, decorate
altar with branches.
Mistletoe: Protection, love, fertility; altar decoration burned at Candlemas
Oak: Health, healing and potency; wood often used as "Yule Log"; associated with Vesta and fire rituals.
Rosemary: Empowers memory, love and loyalty; use in ritual bath or cup to invoke the Sun's energy.
These herbs can be utilized in ritual by making an incense, or anointing candles with essential oil. They can be sewn into a charm bag and consecrated (dedicated to a single purpose), and worn when needed.
Ritual Bath: Bay Leaves, Blessed Thistle, Chamomile, Hyssop, Rosemary.
Place any or all herbs in cheesecloth and tie well; run
under tap. You can also make a strong tea from the herbs,
and strain into the bath. Light orange or gold candles anointed with frankincense oil or solar tea, and imagine
a golden glow in your bath and around your aura. Bathe yourself in the herbs and the solar energy, clearing
away anything you no longer need to hold on to. After your bath, bring your candles with you to the circle,
and place on the altar or at the quarters.
The Altar: Decorate with an abundance of ever-greens,
to welcome the nature spirits to the festivities. Keep
the greenery on the altar for protection until Candlemas, when they can be burned in honor of Brigit at her fire ritual.
You will need three candles: pink, red and brown.
Ritual: Cast the circle, call in the quarters, and call
upon a Solar Deity, if you choose, or just imagine your circle infused with orange-gold solar power.
Incense: Bay, Blessed Thistle, Cedar, Chamomile, Frankincense, Juniper Berries, Oak Bark, Rosemary.
Bring any or all of the above ingredients into your ritual circle and add each herb one at a time, while grinding by hand with a mortar and pestle and focusing on the properties of each herb as it is added. Consecrate your incense by dedicating it to the Sun or one of the Sun Goddesses, and charge it full of solar light.
When the incense is prepared, burn some on a charcoal as you focus in on your goal.
I have chosen three aspects that are active now as a focus for our meditation.
Candles: The pink candle represents Mars in Libra trine Juno in Pisces.
[Juno is an asteroid that represents the goddess of marriage and partnerships; for more on the asteroid goddesses, go to:
http://www.enteract.com/~deep sky/goddess.html ]
Write down how you can expand your awareness of balance and harmony within. Who are you, truly? Who are you in relationship? Focus on harmony between you and your loved ones. Light your candle as you say your goal aloud, or meditate on its meaning.
Repeat with the following:
The red candle represents the the Sun/Mars sexily, representing conviction and courage to shine in a
powerful way. Focus intently on changes you'd like to make, and focus intently as you light your candle.
The brown candle represents the Sun in Capricorn. Write down where you need discipline in order to manifest your most cherished goals. This is where you ground the energies of your ritual. As you light the brown candle, imagine that you have roots that extend deep into the earth, and affirm that the energy of your ritual will be given substance, and will manifest in tangible ways for the highest good of all.
When you feel the ritual is complete, thank the Sun Goddess, and burn each paper as you focus once again on the intention of the goal, releasing the energy to the wind and elemental
helpers. Thank the nature spirits, Deities or elementals, and close your circle, allowing the candles to burn all the way down, or instead, burn them for a little while for the next several days, symbolizing the newly waxing year.
I always like to "charge" a few candles during a Sabbath ritual; I use the large glass-encased candles, anoint them with oil, light them during ritual as above with full intent, add appropriate herbs, and consecrate. I always use them later when I need to focus or bring in some extra energy. You can burn your candle anytime you're working on your goal; they can bring you back to your Yuletide ritual , reinforcing your focus on the dreams for the future. May the magic of rebirth take you where you need to be in the New Year, in perfect love and perfect trust. Blessed Be.
©1999 Sarolta DeFaltay-Bell
"Christian Witch" Author Homepage
I received MANY good comments from you all in regard to the December 12 issue in which I featured an article by Aurora Starr on being a Christian Witch. Many of you asked for more information in regards to reaching her. I have located her homepage & below is the link to it...there are more articles by her there & a link to contact her. I hope this helps all of you who contacted me!