How to Enchant Your Cup of Tea

Add Magical Healing to Medicinal Herbs

SaffronTea Herbs have physical properties that heal and strengthen one’s body. Herbs also have psychic properties that heal and strengthen one’s spirit and physical being, if given a chance. Here’s how to access that magical healing:

When your cup of tea is ready to drink, simply say, “May this tea Mother Earth has given me in Her wisdom and generosity heal and strengthen my body and spirit.”

Then just drink your tea!

It’s that simple! Saying the words I suggested gives the magical attributes of the herb—or herbs—in your cup a chance to emerge. And the words’ grateful acknowledgment of Mother Earth’s gift opened you to receiving the herb’s magical healing and empowerment. You don’t have to get fancy about it by adding visualization or any other technique. Just say the words.

(If you want to add magical techniques, though, go ahead. I love magical techniques and am committed to teaching them. But the point of this post is a quick enchantment anyone can easily fit into their day. Even advanced practitioners can add more magic to their lives if they embrace some simple spells. In fact, I’m committed to teaching both easy and advanced magic. They both have their place.)

Never use magic in place of proper medical care by a trained, professional physician. Magic is a powerful addition, not a replacement.

And remember, when it comes to herbs’ physical properties: just because herbs are natural doesn’t mean they’re all harmless. And what’s a good medicinal herb for one person can be really harmful for another. Know your herbs—research an herb using several sources. There are many medical conditions and other circumstances—and even many herbs—that require you consult with a professional herbalist instead of just deciding what herbs to use yourself.

Enjoy the spell! This magic in a teacup is simple kitchen magic anyone can use, whether a witch or not.

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Spell to Banish Anxiety

Kitchen Magic

MyDoorDetailLife is filled with small tasks that are opportunities for a witch to perform natural, easy magic.

Here’s an example. I use vinegar to keep ants from my kitchen—it works! I mix white vinegar and water, roughly half and half. In a 25 oz bottle, I’d add about eight drops of essential oils that thwart ants. Here are a few: tea tree, peppermint, and clove. If you don’t like those, use a search engine to find others.

Be careful using essential oils: they’re very concentrated so can burn you if they get on your skin; and they’re not for internal use.

Twice a week during warm weather, I wipe the vinegar solution along the ant trail from outside into my kitchen. Otherwise I’d have an ant-filled kitchen.

Channeling a spell to get rid of worries and anxiety, it occurred to me that worries are like ants:

Ants invade the home like worries invade the mind. And the way ants can invade everything in your cupboard, anxiety can invade every part of your life.

So I channeled the following spell to help get rid of worries, large and small. There are two versions of the spell. The first can be used if you have an ant problem in your home. The other one can be used independently of that.

First version:

PastelSqI believe the properties an object has on the mundane plane often translate into otherworldly properties. This provides an opportunity, when doing a chore, to apply the chore’s tools to magical purposes. Tea tree not only deters ants, it is a natural cleaner. For example, it is somewhat antibacterial. So I figure it must also be a cleanser on the psychic plane. That would help the spell cleanse away anxiety. Peppermint is an uplifting scent, so probably has the energetic ability to lift the spirit magically, even if you can’t smell it in the vinegar. The same goes for clove’s uplifting scent. So I think those two essential oils would be good in a spell to relieve anxiety.

As you start to wipe the vinegar solution along the ant trail, say this chant once:

Ants and worry, go away.
This is not your place or day.
No anxiety need be here.
Heart and home be free and clear
to only hold what I hold dear.

Next, while you continue applying the vinegar mix, relax your feet, then your legs, then pelvic girdle, then each of the following one at a time: torso, shoulder girdle, arms, hands, neck, and head. You only need to spend a few moments on each part of your body.

Consciously relaxing the body not only helps stop anxiety but also helps the magic of the spell flow. No need to worry if you’re not good at relaxing. The attempt is what matters.

When you’re done applying the vinegar solution and following the above magical instructions, say, “So mote it be!”

You can repeat this spell whenever you want.

Second version:

PastelSqSay the following three times. After each recitation, do the relaxation described above. Doing both recitation and relaxation three times compensates for the lack of essential oil magic.

Antlike worries, go away.
This is not your place or day.
No anxiety need be here.
Heart and home be free and clear
to only hold what I hold dear.

When done, say, “So mote it be!”

You can repeat this version whenever you want.

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Baba Yaga’s Apprentice

Baba Yaga’s Apprentice:
A Faerie Tale Ritual

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If ever we needed ways to stay focused and whole, and experience some gentleness, this is the time.

Baba Yaga’s Apprentice is my gentle enchantment that creates focus and wholeness. I believe this magic is all the more powerful and effective for its gentleness.

This storybook is for grown-ups . . . but the sort of adults who remain, or want to remain, childlike at heart.

This book’s format: PDF.
List price: $25
Price: $19.99

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The tale is my revisioning of Baba Yaga folklore.

As the book’s story proceeds, a ritual simultaneously unfolds for the reader.

Here’s one of the illustrations:SampleILLstrtn

Baba Yaga’s Apprentice is fun, easy reading.

Along with being a Faerie tale and a gentle ritual, this book is also a work of art for you. Trying to evoke the embellishments in old Faerie tale books and add a layer of enchantment to the magical foundation I’d spun with the text, I ornamented every page with my original full color art. Most of the art is my spin on Poland’s folk art.

I have felt immense mojo on the project; I wanted this spell to happen so much.

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From the preface:

“The spell is very easy to do. You don’t even have to “do” it. The sheer reading of the Faerie tale to oneself, just for fun, even silently, and enjoying my paintings, is all it takes for the spell to work.”

“The storybook’s magical current helps you:
* Focus on what’s important to you.
* Follow through on it.
* Stay centered in your power and your love.
* Protect your dear heart from being hurt or blocked.
* Feed your witchy soul.

“The ritual also supports you if you are introverted, empathic, exceptionally magical, or sensitive psychically.

“And when you are fearful or nervous, this is a good tale for you.”

The book is 7000 words and 46 pages.

Here’s another sample, a text frame I painted:
SampleBYAPg

This volume was created with my sincerest hope that the gentle love and hope with which the Muse infused the pages will sustain and empower you … over and over.

Available only from the author.

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Join the Faerie Circus

feycircusI take my work as a shaman seriously, hold myself to a high standard, and do everything in my power to reach that standard. That doesn’t require pompousness. Fun is important. It adds lightheartedness to the shamanic journey. I teach ecstatic shamanic witchcraft—we have fun in our process. The end is the means.

Writing the ditty below to promote my newsletter was fun. So was making the little painting above, to accompany the ditty. The newsletter helps people, so spreading word about it is a service, and service can be fun.

Come one, come all,
join the Faerie Circus!
This is no movie, no metaphor.
This is the real deal,
this is going somewhere—
get my newsletters:
click here.

The sky’s my big tent,
a star’s my trapeze.
Come swirl through the air with me:
click here now for magic,
confidence, too,
the self love you need,
and other awesome breakthroughs.

Your witchcraft will thrive
more than ever before.
Check out my mailings;
they open the door.

Plus you’ll get freebies
that only go to
my newsletter readers.
Click here—that’s your cue!

Holy Sweaty Joy

RosesTwineHoly Sweaty Joy—
Ecstatic Spirituality and Sacred Sexuality
A Seven-Week Shamanic Class-by-Phone

Train in the Third Road Faerie ecstatic path.

Claim magic.

Revel in Faerie Faith rituals and mysteries:
* Move past inner blocks to your inherent, sacred sensuality.
* Be a sex god(dess)!
* Imbue daily activities with confident passion.
* Revel in your unique bewitching sexuality.
* Heal your spirit—and empower your goals—through celebration.
* Reside in your core essence, so your authenticity shapes decisions.
* Find your joy.
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Click here to enroll.

No prerequisites required; however, adepts find substantial depth.

Fun, ethical classes. I limit enrollment. No impersonal, glib teachings. Receive personal attention.

Holy Sweaty Joy contains core Third Road teachings and is a prerequisite for advanced Third Road Shamanic Training.

Nuts and bolts:
* We meet in teleseminars (group phone meetings). To participate, just dial the phone.
* Class meets seven consecutive Wednesdays, from noon to 1:00 EST, starting Weds January 25.
* Reserve Weds March 15, same time, for a makeup class in case I’m unavailable for one of the planned sessions.
* Total enrollment is $250. You might also pay long-distance charges; it depends on your long-distance plan; charges appear on your phone bill. The event’s area code is a U.S. #.
* If you’ve taken this class before, repeat it at half-price.
* Click here to enroll.
* Upon receipt of payment, your place is reserved, and event phone #, etc., emailed to you. If you need more info, or want to discuss scholarship, trade, or payment plan, call 814-337-2490. No refunds.

RoseLineA bit about me as a teacher:
* When I teach orally, I’m embedded within a family oral tradition I entered in infancy, learning magic con leche.
* Holy Sweaty Joy is not training you could get from a book.
* I thoughtfully channel curriculums, constructing lessons over time. This tunes us into enormous, subtle powers. Holy Sweaty Joy is not a jumble of undigested white-bread ideas declared, “Voila, genuine Pagan stuff!” :-) Instead, I committed my lifestyle to developing counterculture material for you.
* I received full-time longterm shamanic training. It was not academic but an experiential training of skill sets. That focused study allowed me into the heart of reality, in trance 24-7, channeling worthwhile lessons, for seven years.
* For decades since, my Gods asked me to trance only part of the day, to ground me. Feet more on the ground than ever, I continue to explore our magical yet earthy cosmos, and channel new material for earth-based mysticism classes, because resting on my laurels would be no fun. I like fun.

Magic is transformative fun that does the job when all else fails. Click here to enroll.

Pagan Monastery 2017

A Virtual Pagan Monastery:
Ongoing Magical and Spiritual Support for a Month

Easily fit Pagan practices into your week. Can’t leave your responsibilities? Stay where you are and attend my virtual monastery’s easy mini-meetings.

From March 6 to April 5, I’ll lead 15 minute rituals, via group telephone calls:
* Mondays 11:30 AM EST
* Wednesdays 11:30 EST
* Fridays noon EST

Feedback: “This is a great event. Someone might think, ‘I won’t get much from 15 minutes, three times a week.’ But Francesca’s Pagan Monastery showed me how deep a 15-minute ritual can go. She knows how to do this, making my day happier. You really should attend.”

Scroll down to enroll: enter your phone number and pay securely with PayPal.


Pls give yr phone number.


KeepingPower2012-04#2This event’s magical current helps you:
* Focus on what’s important to you.
* Stay centered in your power.
* Protect your loving heart from being stymied.
* Feed your magical soul.

During the rituals, you also receive direct spiritual transmissions to strengthen your spirit.

For decades, I’ve lived as a Pagan monastic (that’s the term I made up for it, because it describes my life style to a T). Magical and spiritual practices are integrated throughout my day. I’m experienced at creating them, understand their immense power, and will use my expertise to create rituals for you. Join me in my virtual Pagan monastery.

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Here’s the mundane structure of these 15 minute phone calls:

1) We start ritual right away, wrap up ritual at the end of the 15 minutes, then jump off the phone. Sticking to 15 minutes allows participants to fit this in their day, and allows me to provide this service.

2) If you’re in crisis, the ritual is an opportunity to find respite, center yourself, or benefit in another way, depending on what ritual I lead that day. Though there’s no time to discuss your situation during the meeting, you’re welcome to book a shamanic counseling appointment with me: http://www.outlawbunny.com/pastoral-counseling/

3) If you have a problem specific to the ceremony, I’ll discuss it with you right after the ritual or soon as possible.

4) You need about two minutes after every session to do our special Third Road grounding, which I’ll teach you.

The monastic structure gives you the ongoing nurture of communal rites. Consistent ritual keeps me centered, happy, and productive.

Nuts and bolts:
* These 15 minute group-meetings are by phone. Just dial the phone from anywhere.
* We start Monday March 6 and go through April 5.
* Reserve Friday April 7 and Monday April 10, noontime and 11:30 respectively, for makeup sessions in case I’m unavailable for planned sessions.
* Total cost: $145. Your usual long-distance charges apply and appear on your phone bill. The event’s area code is a U.S. #.
* Upon receipt of payment, I email you event phone number, etc.
* Call me—814-337-2490—for more info or to discuss scholarship, trade, or payment plan. Do not email me. Refunds unavailable.
* Scroll down to enroll: enter your phone number and pay securely with PayPal.


Pls give yr phone number.


Consistent ritual has amazing benefits and is all the more important during difficult times. If you’re in a crisis, enrolling in the Pagan Monastery event is one of the most important investments you can make, because it will help you accomplish exactly what needs to be done.

Upcoming Event: the Old Ones

Starts November 28

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Some individuals interested in The Love-Witch (a two-month Faerie ceremony I’m currently leading) can’t attend its meetings and asked for an alternative. I felt my Gods were talking through them.

So I worked out something that has some of The Love-Witch ceremony’s energy but does not require meetings. Here’s what I’ve set up for them and you:

Receive three yummy magics:

1) Long-distance direct spiritual transmissions for two months! The transmissions help you center into your love, gentleness, compassion, playfulness, pleasure, and beauty. They are supple, unconquerable magics that help you:

* Reach goals your heart longs for.

* Make the world a better place.

* Enjoy wonderful self-care.

Over the two months, the more you’re centered into those magics, the more they’ll automatically align you with the enchantments that surround you every moment. Those enchantments are Divine Love, the most potent magic of all, and it takes care of you even when you’re not doing spells.

The transmissions also help you:

* Give yourself all the loving care, compassion, and joy you readily give everyone else.

* Be immune to cynics, greedy people, and others who fight Love. Protect yourself, make boundaries, and, undeterred by discouragers, move powerfully through the world as an agent of love.

* Be happy and free, as your spiritual beauty radiates to illuminate your life and the world.

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You receive the direct spiritual transmissions three days a week, for two months! You don’t have to do anything for the transmissions to work. I do the work for you.

2) Centering emails: I call someone a “Love-Witch” if they believe love, gentleness, compassion, playfulness, pleasure, and beauty are magic. Every other week, you receive an email that supports the Love-Witch in you. The emails discuss some of the issues I mentioned the direct spiritual transmissions focusing on.

3) Both months, you receive a different full-color digital talisman I intuitively choose for your unique goals, strengths, and challenges as a Love-Witch. The talismans are my original art painted in trance, and I magically activate them. You receive yours as a JPEG by email. (I retain full copyright of my art. Commercial use of the piece is available at additional cost.)

Here is one of the talismans, called “Silly Dragon Hiding.” Its detail is blurred a bit by this site’s download process. Your talisman will be clearer:
sillydragonsmI will email you a description of your talisman’s specific powers, along with instructions to receive the symbol’s blessings almost effortlessly.

Individually, cost of these three services would add up to $380. I reduced your price to $300.

Pay securely with PayPal. Two options:

Use the Pay Now button to send me the $300. You don’t need a PayPal account.





Or use the Subscribe button to make two automatic monthly payments of $150. Payments appear on the credit card associated with your PayPal account. This option is available if you have a PayPal account.





For more info, or to discuss scholarship, partial scholarship, or trade, call 814-337-2490. I do not discuss this work by email. Refunds unavailable.

No experience needed. But adepts are deeply impacted.

Again, spiritual transmissions start November 28, so register now.

Love Witches can be considered the Old Ones. Here is my poem We Are the Old Ones:

We’re the Old Ones—ancient as forests—born into Gaia again
to continue our work and our joy.

We’re dreamers wanting to make a positive difference
by bringing love—and more love—everywhere
our free spirits wander.

We’re the Fey children of Mother Earth
who believe magic infuses
every aspect of Her being and all Her children.

We know Her gentle magics
are as powerful as flashy, overt magics.
We embrace both.

We know a flower found by the roadside
can be a transformative gift to a friend.

We’re the ones who defend
Gaia’s children from being harmed.

We’re the ones who speak up
to protect the defenseless.

We try to make our thoughts and actions
reflect the Goddess’ love.

We take care of people around us,
both those we know well
and those who pass through our lives.

We might do the above things poorly sometimes,
but they’re central to our lives:
we bring love, gentleness, and compassion to the world.
So mote it be.

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Using Scorpio Energy Regardless of Your Sign

faerierlmwetwpnk2smThe days from October 23 to November 21 are governed by the astrological sign of Scorpio, making Scorpionic powers easily accessed throughout that period. Here are some ways to draw on that energy to improve your life.

The Phoenix, symbol of rebirth, also represents Scorpio, which is the sign of death coupled with regeneration. I think that’s one reason many people find fall weather so energizing and renewing.

However, renewal usually requires effort. We might be loath to do that work if we lose hope that positive change is possible. A personal, joyous, spectacular Phoenix rebirth I had a few years back proved to me we can reach happiness and victory if we grow from rough times.

I mean, I had an immense financial, emotional, and physical renewal after a nightmarish time. If you need belief that change for the better is possible, check out my post about that rebirth, my friend: http://stardrenched.com/2014/02/05/phoenix-resurrection/ (I did both its Phoenix paintings.)

scorpioHere’s yet another way to build hope. Scorpios tend to go through many renewals in their lifetimes. That Scorpionic sense of renewal flows through the natural world strongly right now so, if you want to trust renewal is possible, take a walk in the fall weather; it might inspire you.

Scorpio deals with deeply hidden parts of life and self. Scorpios are often intuitive, insightful, and good spiritual healers. (So no surprise that this is considered a witchy time of year.) Part of being empowered by this scorpionic time, at least for me, is affirming and celebrating my intuition, psychic abilities, and spiritual healing. These traits are often invalidated in this culture. So it’s good to affirm and celebrate them now and again.

William Blake said, “If the Sun and Moon should doubt, they would immediately go out.” So instead of doubting your magic, intuitiveness, and other hidden wonders, try the following celebration. It only takes a minute or two: Notice the vigor of fall and the peacefully darkening weather. You might feel how they reflect and affirm the witch in you. Whether you feel that or not, say the following affirmation a few times: “Blessed be the hidden beauty in me and my efforts to see it.” Yep, it’s a simple ritual, and it works.

Preparing for the upcoming Pagan harvest festival Samhain, I’m dwelling on how wonderfully suitable Scorpio themes are for Samhain rites. So during a ritual I’m creating to celebrate a Faerie Samhain, I will lead attendees through a process to draw on Scorpionic energy to empower themselves.

Scorpios like to indulge (I should know, I’m a triple-Scorpio.) Much as I like the ideas I’ve offered in this post, I want to take the Scorpio energy a lot further during the Samhain rite, full-tilt celebrating our beautiful, beautiful witchiness and the dazzling magic that surrounds us every day.

You’re invited to attend. The ritual is a free event, via group phone call, and is open to all. My enewsletter will have full details. Subscribe by clicking here: http://www.well.com/user/zthirdrd/InfoForm.htm

The Love-Witch: a Two-Month Faerie Ceremony

A two-month Faerie love-in! The unconquerable magics of love, gentleness, compassion, play, pleasure, and beauty will help you
* reach goals your heart longs for,
* make the world a better place,
* and enjoy wonderful self-care.

weebunnyhat1Some Pagans insist a “real witch” is always brooding, hexing, and amoral. Humbug! They might call this event “fluffy bunny Paganism,” but the event’s immense power syncs all the way to the center of the earth and rises all the way to the stars.

The Third Road tradition of witchcraft can be fierce and determined. We also have gentle magics that reach goals just as effectively. This event focuses on that gentle mojo, letting our love, compassion, and playfulness radiate to illuminate our lives and the world.

The world needs your loving light, which my student Jenelle Campion describes as a sweetness that’s invalidated.

This event is for witches who strive to be both wild and gentle, strong and compassionate. I call such a Pagan a “Love-Witch.”

You’ll be drenched in love! The event has four magics that add up big. You receive:

1) Long distance direct spiritual transmissions, three days a week, for two months. You don’t have to do anything for the transmission to work. I do the work for you.

Traditional craft—my magic spinning to support your every cell. The transmission shapes to you: it gives you what your heart needs next, helps you go heart-led directions, and nestles you into the love and bounty within the Great Mother’s heart. For two months!

2) Seven ritual circles of love, via group phone call. Our rites together draw on gentle magics—our loving suppleness, light-heartedness, and spiritual beauty—to make a better world, achieve personal goals, and nurture self-love.

These gentle magics also align us with the enchantments that surround us every moment—that power is Divine Love, the most potent magic of all.

It’s a Faerie Love-In! Our shamanic process will be compassion, play, beauty, and pleasure. I push students when needed, but not in these meetings. I’ll guide with a gentle touch. We can best bring gentleness, compassion, play, and pleasure to the world if we give that to ourselves in our own process. These meetings will model that for you.

weebunnyhat2If you’re the rare heart-led being, you know it’s hard to be an agent of love in a world where vision is often scorned by those who prefer greed and narrow-mindedness, Receive tools to do your work in the world and to take loving care of yourself in the process.

Win as an agent of love:

* Has darkness tried to snuff your bright light? We’ll discuss shining brightly without drawing attack and other protections.

* Learn gentle magics that create immunity to cynics, greedy people, and others who fight Love. Move through the world as a love-witch, without being crushed by attacks or discouragers.

* Give yourself all the love, compassion, and joy you readily give everyone else.

Receive personal attention. During tribe meetings, I’ll intuit lessons and rites that help you go where your heart leads and nestle you in Divine Care.

The group meets via group phone call. Simply dial the phone to participate.

We meet seven Thursdays, from 6:00 to 7:00 PM EST. Meetings are spread over two months’ time. Holiday weeks are among those we skip. Meeting dates:

November 10
November 17
December 1
December 8
December 15
December 29
January 12
Reserve Thursday, January 19,
same time, for a makeup class in case I’m unavailable for one of the planned sessions.

(Direct spiritual transmissions start November 7, a few days before class, to begin our Faerie love-in before we even gather.)

3) Heart-Centering: On weeks without tribe meetings, a quick-to-read email centers you in your gentle witchcraft and heart-goals.

4) You receive a full color digital talisman tailored to your unique spirit. I magically activate the talisman to moor you to your Gods’ love and protection as you work toward your life goals and do Their work. Their powers and love feed yours. These talismans are my original art painted in trance. You receive yours as a JPEG by email. (I retain full copyright of my art. Commercial use of the piece is available at additional cost.) Here is one of the talismans, called “Silly Dragon Hiding.” Its detail is blurred a bit by this site’s download process:
sillydragonsmThe email explains the symbol’s specific powers, and includes instructions to receive the symbol’s blessings almost effortlessly.

Individually, all these services would cost $560. I’m reducing their cost:

Pay securely with PayPal, with two options. Both are big savings:

Option 1) Total cost: $460, with two easy automatic monthly payments of $230. Payments appear on the credit card associated with your PayPal account. This option is available if you have a PayPal account. Use the Subscribe button.




Option 2) Pay all at once by October 20 to save another $80. Total cost: $380. You don’t need a PayPal account. Use the Pay Now button.




Upon payment, your place is reserved, and I email you event phone number, etc. Refunds unavailable. For more info, or to discuss scholarship, partial scholarship, or trade, call 814-337-2490. I do not discuss this work by email.

You might pay long-distance charges to call the event’s number (a U.S. area code), depending on your long-distance plan. Charges would appear on your phone bill.

This two-month process can be used as one of the electives needed before advanced Third Road training.

No experience needed. But adepts are deeply impacted.

My poem “We Are the Old Ones” describes a Love-Witch:

We’re the Old Ones—ancient as forests—born into Gaia again
to continue our work and our joy.

We’re dreamers wanting to make a positive difference
by bringing love—and more love—everywhere
our free spirits wander.

We’re the Fey children of Mother Earth
who believe magic infuses
every aspect of Her being and all Her children.

We know Her gentle magics
are as powerful as flashy, overt magics.
We embrace both.

We know a flower found by the roadside
can be a transformative gift to a friend.

We’re the ones who defend
Gaia’s children from being harmed.

We’re the ones who speak up
to protect the defenseless.

We try to make our thoughts and actions
reflect the Goddess’ love.

We take care of people around us,
both those we know well
and those who pass through our lives.

We might do the above things poorly sometimes,
but they’re central to our lives:
we bring love, gentleness, and compassion to the world.
So mote it be.

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Spirit Doll

SpiritDoll1Sometimes our friends/clients don’t need “help,” even if we have skills capable of creating positive change for those we serve. Sometimes we serve a person best by investing our skill set in honoring them—and their circumstances—exactly as they are.

Here’s an example. I know someone who’s suffered extraordinary difficulties for years. I foolishly wanted to meddle—”save” her. I wanted to give her spiritual healings. I wanted to teach her shamanic exercises to become stronger. I wanted to show her abilities she doesn’t know she has. I wanted to make a protective amulet to ward off negative energy around her. I wanted to, I wanted, I wanted. None of it was what she wanted … or needed.

Mind you, everything I longed to do for her is perfect for many of my clients. And could be perfect for her at another time.

But the following is what I did. I made her a totem. As I chose objects for it, I let go of what I thought was “right” for her. Instead, I selected items to honor and celebrate who she already is.

The totem’s sole purpose (oh my, voice-recognition translated that as “soul purpose”) was to represent how wonderful she is. I completely let go of all other agendas. That included releasing the thought that her experience of my celebration might empower her to make changes I felt could help her with her struggles. She knows best, not me.

So there’s a long bone bead with stars in it, because if anybody has stars in her bones, it’s this woman. The wood is European Elder—sambucus nigra—and is a piece so young that it’s mostly soft, spongy pulp—fragile, as are we all. Its youth also gives it a wondrous sensitivity like my friend’s, and a gentle, subtle, yet dynamic magic that my friend has. The ladybug portrays another aspect of that.

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Three luminescent cobalt beads represent the mysteries she lovingly serves. A bead that is probably tiger’s eye and one that is probably goat horn represent how down-to-earth she is; she modestly infuses sacredness into her daily mundane responsibilities, though they are immense and humble.

A purple bead symbolizes the beauty of her spirit and the beauty she gifts people around her. A leaf indicates her care of Gaia’s children. I made the wool bead on top because … well, she’ll know why. And I had to add something sparkly because she is Fey.

At some point in its creation, this wall-hanging chose to be a doll. (Heh, a wall-doll.) So I spun yarn (which I felted a bit to help it set, since its winding wouldn’t be held tight by a weaving or the like) to shape the body.

Is “totem doll” an actual term? … This totem doll represents her spirit. … The term “spirit doll” is popular nowadays. … I could call it a “poppet,” because that’s a term for a doll used in magic. Not that I expect my friend to do spells with this, unless she wants to, but this doll was used magically in that I blessed it. And to play with words, “poppet” is a traditional term of endearment; making this artifact was an expression of love.

SpiritDoll3Creating the poppet was an unexpected gift to myself: I no longer need to fret about someone I hold dear. Affirming some of this woman’s wonderful attributes reminded me she has many other amazing powers, so needs no rescuer; she has every resource she needs within her, including the ability to ask for help when she requires it.

In case someone reads this post as an either/or proposition: I do not usually choose between helping friends/clients create positive change and honoring them exactly as they are. Most of the time, serving them both ways is beneficial.

Facilitating shifts they want in themselves and in their lives is a more respectful process if I also mirror back to them, in word, visual art, or ritual, their beauty and power—including that which is hidden to most eyes and that which they do not even see themselves.

It feels important to mention this sort of mirroring and affirming of those around us can require as much skill, thoughtfulness, and magic as does helping them make changes. For example, I have the psychic ability to see the beauty and power in people, even if they cannot.

Why is it important to mention the skills involved? Because people with lots of skills for creating change can feel frustrated when they can’t use those abilities for someone they care about. But you can apply your gifts another way—to honoring someone just as they are—and accomplish something vitally important. People need to be respected for who they already are. People need to be fully met right where they are.

Sometimes trying to “help” someone robs them of dignity. If instead, we honor them as they follow whatever path they choose, achieve victories that are important to them (as opposed to victories you think they need to gain), make the mistakes they need to make, and explore the parts of themselves they think vital to explore, we give an invaluable respect. That respect is also known as “love.” So mote it be.

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