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Lakes Area Pagan
Volume 1, Number 1
Fall Equinox 2007 Additional copies of Lakes Area Pagan may be purchased at: http://stores.lulu.com/anarchistbanjo Contributors retain copyright of their own material and are responsible for its content.
The Lakes Area Pagan is published as a service to the local pagan and Wiccan community. Contributors have been asked to use pen names or Craft names for security reasons. No profit is made on the publication of this magazine other than the small profit the bookstore makes for distributing it. There is no advertising. There is only the willingness to share. I have done minor editing of spelling and grammar to make the issue more readable. Cover Art: Prodigy of the Basilisk by Ulla Gillraen. Back Cover Photo: Lakeside Bliss by Jade*Horse
Lakes Area Networking
The Lakes Area Pagan and Wiccan Community is an online discussion forum for local people to meet and get to know each other better before meeting in person. It is a safe and sacred space. Those wishing to enter in a spirit of perfect love and perfect trust are welcome. Go to:http://anarchistworld.biz/phpBB Register as a user and then email me at: email@example.com with an email letting me know why you want to join this community. This personal email is required to weed out unsolicited spammers and weirdos. Use Lakes Area Pagan as a title. Spring Equinox Issue Anyone interested in contributing material for the Spring Equinox Issue can email me the material at firstname.lastname@example.org Articles, poems, stories, art, photos and anything interesting are welcome as long as it is fit for a general audience.The general theme for the Spring Issue is Spirituality and Healing. Other topics are invited as well.
This is an exciting project to be part of. I am very grateful for the local Wiccans and pagans that offered to contribute material for this first issue. I’m certain more will step forward when they see how beautiful this issue really is. The Brainerd Lakes Area will never be the same. There is some wonderful talent out there! The broad theme for this issue is duality and I’ve contributed a few essays dealing with that theme. Duality is an important concept for us to consider in today’s world. There is lots of other stuff as well so enjoy! I have made a commitment to four issues of Lakes Area Pagan. There will be a fall issue and spring issue for two years. It is my hope this will jumpstart the local community into seeking each other out and creating bonds of friendship.
The intention of this magazine is to be a voice of the community in its infinite variety and richness. Each person on this earth has something wonderful to share. Consider sharing it here! I’m looking forward to making new friends and am always available for coffee. Just drop me an email. On a more serious note I’m challenging everyone to watch Zeitgeist-The Movie. You can view this movie online at:
This might well be the most important movie you will ever see in this lifetime. It is not about Pagans or Wiccans. It is about the survival of humanity into the future. Let me know what you think and let your friends know about it as well. Everyone should see this movie.
Listen to Mother Earth, Hear how she whispers To you, child. Can you hear her secrets? Find her songs echo through you? They are yours, Yours alone. Keep them dear and close To your heart. Beneath the moon, The great sparkling sky You can hold your Life in your hands And whisper your secrets To her. -Arrow
The Old Apartment
Throbbing hum of your fridge. Subtle hiss of your radiator. Ticking, tick, tick, tick, of your clock.
That rumbling cluck of your old fridge. The snick squeaks as it’s used. The gargle and chatter of your pipes As the water runs free. This place, you sing a sweet song Of old age and use. But it’s not the song of home you sing. Sanctuary, sanctuary be here. Shelter, shelter be here. Come, come-hither and rest Your weary heads. I know this song you sing. It is not to me you sing I know, But I listen all the same.
- Ulla Gilraen
The 35W Bridge
The world d r o p s away With suspended hearts, and lost placement we watch the bridge, long spanning the Mississippi, become a twisted ribbon upon the ground. It lies beached across the river A broken tendril of faith in all things manmade -SnowBound
Modern Wicca and Paganism
Wicca and Paganism are the religions of the future and not of the past. This essay will serve as an introduction to a modern variety of both. I realize many Wiccans and Pagans will have their own versions but some standard will arise and I believe that standard will be closely reflected by the points in this essay. The thoughtful person recognizes life has not come out of the void. There must be a higher Creator/Intelligence that has fashioned our universe. This ultimate Deity is beyond human comprehension and equally beyond human reach. Like the Freemasons we can call this First Source
the Grand Architect of the Universe and leave it at that. There is no more to say except it has nothing to do with the Practice of Modern Wicca or Paganism. Likewise we recognize through modern science the basic building block of all matter is the photon and its reciprocal electricity. The Grand Architect of the Universe created the universe out of light and electricity. Science tells us that matter and energy are interchangeable. The photon expands outward in all directions until it can go no further. Then it collapses inward upon itself and returns back toward the point of its origin as an electrical pulse. This is vibratory motion and duality in action. Modern Wicca and Paganism are not in conflict with modern science, psychology or electronics. Instead they propose a view of reality that embraces them all in harmony with magickal practice, religious practice and nature. For the Wiccan and Pagan the photon/electricity is the first expression of male and female energy. The outward expansive energy is called man and the inward embracing energy is called woman. Thus both Wicca and Paganism share a common understanding of the absolute duality within creation. In union the male and female create a cycle that is complete and stable. At the cosmic and planetary level the sun and the stars as givers of light are seen as male. Outer space, the galactic center and the earth and moon are seen as female. These are physical manifestations of male and female energies and Symbols of a Great God and Goddess.
Paganism holds the vital life force within all living things as sacred. One might consider the practice of Paganism to be the worship of the life force in all living things. There is a circle of life and a balance to nature that must be maintained. To live in harmony with nature’s cycles is to live a pagan life. Wicca contains Paganism within it. But Wicca is much more because Wicca is about the human race and the survival of humanity into the future. The human race is a single organism and we all share a common collective soul. We are all part of each other. To hurt someone else is to hurt yourself in the largest sense. The religion of Modern Wicca is the worship of the human Collective and the guiding intelligence of the human race embodied as God and Goddess. When we say the Goddess we mean the Collective feminine guiding intelligence of the human race. When we say the God we mean the Collective masculine guiding intelligence of the human race. Together they form the collective soul of humanity. Since we are all a part of them, they may at times speak through us. This is an important part of the Wiccan religion. What is the difference between a religion and a personality cult? A true religion offers spiritual and mystical experience along with the development of the individual soul and its powers. Each person is allowed to grow spiritually. Each person is expected to find their own path and develop the “Christ” within their own heart. They are expected to listen
to the still small voice of their conscience as the “God/dess of their heart”. A personality cult does not allow this. Only the founder of the personality cult has exclusive right to spiritual and mystical experience. Others can not do what this divine person has done. Sadly Christianity once was a true religion. Christians were told to pick up their own crosses and walk the same path as Jesus. They were told they could do the same miracles and have the same experiences. Christians were told to become “Christs”. Today Christianity has degenerated into a personality cult where one is told to “cling to the cross” and have faith in the power of Jesus to save them. They are not encouraged to have mystical experiences or follow the inner voice of their conscience. External authority does the thinking for them. The literal interpretation of symbolic literature assures those in power remain there. Believers will get their reward after they have died. Both Modern Wicca and Paganism are profoundly religious and offer internal guidance with mystical and magickal experience. Both deal with the reality of living a right life in the present moment. The concept of reincarnation ensures that all karma and unresolved issues must someday be confronted. There is no escape from cause and effect. We must create heaven on earth or live in a hell of our own creation. This is a responsible position and teaches the need to deal honestly with life. The development of the individual soul and its powers is an important part of Modern Wicca. This
is done through hard work and the generation of physical, sexual, emotional, mental and spiritual energy on a daily basis. The work is cumulative and the development of the soul is certain. Each individual soul has a male and a female aspect to be developed. Physical genetics only allows XY chromosomes to generate male energy and XX chromosomes to generate female energy. The development of each individual soul requires both male and female energy. We get the needed opposite sex energy from our love relationships with others. The sharing of male and female energy can be physical and sexual or it can be non-physical as in platonic friendships. The Great Rite of Wicca is a symbolic enactment of this sharing. Wicca is about love and male/female relationships and the development of the soul and its powers through this sharing. In love relationships something is created within each person and it grows as the energy is exchanged. This is the great secret. This is the great balance of male and female that exists in all things. This is duality. -Anarchistbanjo
My body is your creation Proud and strong I am your living image. I am the Dam Holding back the Waters of Life. I am the Forest The shelter Of the Living. I am the Ocean My fertile caress Cradling the Land. I am the Stone. Steadfast and Firm Unwavering Existence. -Arrow
Within the drop of glistening prisms I learn my heart and hear my dreams Downpour opens a deluge within me and I am transformed to a storm I find I am as intricate as a rainbow condensed as a rain cloud I nurture, I nature I cleanse and I create I rain
The dying sun sheds crimson gloom Across the sullen bay The witch-wind howls through naked trees And lashes ocean spray Down a darkened stony trail A traveler makes his way
Tattered cloak hides mighty thews Wind swept hair veils eyes But tear drops glisten on his face His gaze on scarlet skies A muffled sob, a shattered dream The bleeding sun, it dies Other dreams have gone before Still this one hurts the most His golden angel shining bright Is but a fragile broken ghost Pain gleaming in his eyes He walks alone along the coast He stops to gaze around him Smells the keen salt air And glories at the twilight As the wind whips through his hair Standing tall against the night A fortress resting there The silver moon rides soft and slow It's light burns bright and clear Moon beams dance among the leaves And shyly hover near They play upon his lonely face And touch a glistening tear They stroke his rough unshaven cheeks And kiss his fevered lips
Along his strong and hardened chest A gentle finger slips Another's playing in his eyes Where crystal water drips Bearing peace on wings of love To the traveler in their light They set his soul aflame with dreams And now his eyes glow bright As he sings a song against the wind And strides into the night -Anarchistbanjo
Merry meet, I call to the people. Join hands for the Sabbats to come. Journey forward into the dawning new day as a family, as one. Blessed be. -Ulla Gilraen
The Essence of Family in the Craft.
In today’s society there really isn’t any true meaning to families any more. At one time it meant living with the ones you loved and cherished. It meant being with people that understood you and made you feel like you belonged some where.
You would risk your life to protect or defend them without a second thought knowing they would do the same for you. Now in today’s world all family means to most people is that you share blood ties and have to act nice and be polite to one another if even that. Over the years we have lost touch with our families and their guiding values. I have seen more and more people neglect and despise their roles as parents, siblings and teachers. People have abandoned each other, not as much physically, but emotionally. Leaving them for the cold dagger’s painful cut and the feeling of being worthless, unwanted and utterly alone in this world. Some have left each other for the cruel whims of our society and world. Some of them find new families or refuge in organized religion. While others remain abandoned and lost. Then there are the ones like us. We have felt the true piercing cold of that dagger. We know what it is like to truly be alone, to have no one understand us or want us because of our inner beliefs. We are left not being able to find a place in society to belong, because there isn’t one. We have had to and will still need to hide ourselves from others so as not to be burned by their anger. Their fear of what they don’t understand. We do eventually find where we belong. Whether that be in our youth or in our later years. It is not a group of people but a thought, an ideal to strive for; it’s a balance within ourselves. We find in the craft
our inner shadows. We do have to travel alone for a time so we may find the shadows that are truly our own. And in doing so we will hear the voice of our true parents calling us to find them. As sad as it may be most of us have walked all alone through our entire lives with just a glimpse or two of others on the same path. With that said and our parents found we need not be alone any more. After all we have found our true mothers and fathers. We know our own shadow, so why not search for our brothers and sisters so they’ll be at our sides and no longer alone. Now mind you it is not a coven I seek, for my worship is mine alone. IT is my shadow’s song; my heart’s truth and I need no other than myself to sing it. It is my brothers and sisters I seek for now. So the generations to come will know that though they travel this path alone now, it will not always be so. I want to reclaim our families. I want to regain our guides. Let us make a past so our children, our jewels, will have a future. So when those with fire come our children will have a sanctuary to run to.
Prayer and Wicca
For thousands of years, our ancestors prayed to the Gods of long ago. Not only were there prayers for successful harvest, childbirth, marriage and other social events. There were also prayers said over meals, evening prayers, prayer for the dead or dying. There were not only traditions of spoken prayer, but also prayer through dance, swaying, stomping feet, chanting, or even bowing our heads. Prayer was a part of daily life for our ancestors. We brought our best fruits and grains to the altars, slaughtered our prized bull in honor of the Gods. But why? Why did people who struggled to survive, give the best of themselves to their Gods? First of all, we need to look at what is attempting to be accomplished during prayer. - Prayer attempts to connect ourselves with our Higher Power - Prayer attempts to give praise or respect to our Higher Power - Prayer attempts to train a person to focus, gain insight and promote contemplation - Prayer attempts to affect reality - Prayer attempts to request assistance or guidance from our higher power - Prayer attempts to express our thoughts and feelings. In order to achieve these goals, an individual must learn how to pray, how to approach these
goals. Each individual seeks and connects with their Higher Power in their own way. Prayer comes in many forms. Some pray privately, others find greater strength of prayer when surrounded by individuals of similar faith. The simple act of lighting a candle or familiar incense can sometimes accompany prayer, mentally preparing an individual for attuning with their Higher Power. Physical posturing can enhance the power of prayer such as swaying which standing or kneeling, raising palms to the sky , closing or opening eyes, folding hands. External props have also been traditionally shown to aid in a connection with our Higher Power. Prayer beads, wheels, and drums have been used for centuries. But why all of this attention and effort put into prayer? Why is it important? Prayer is important because it brings to the forefront of our minds the deep inner connection we finite creatures have with the infinite. We are creatures of constant searching. Searching for food, shelter, the elements of survival. Later on in our evolution, we sought knowledge and understanding of the world around us. Finally we searched for something bigger than our own world, meaning and purpose; an explanation for our existence . Prayer is a tool for pursuing that search. We as Wiccans have a great pride in our long standing faith and traditions of prayer and worship. The chants are a part of our blood, the songs of praise we have sang for hundreds of years still echo through us, calling us to pray, remember the Divine and satisfy our hungry search for something more. -Arrow
Homage To The Great Mother
Great Mother Your breath is my breath, Your heartbeat is my own. You have created a garden within And without. You bless me with children. You bless me with love. You bless me with guidance. I walk with solid stride Through your fertile valley Washing myself clean in your presence. - Arrow
The tree sways slow strip tease leaf by leaf to reveal bareness unveiling hidden recesses dropping each bit in seductive swirl to leave her orange and red sweater puddled about her feet -SnowBound
Charge of the God and Goddess
"Listen to the words of the God and Goddess. Whenever you need anything, once a month and better when the moon is full, assemble in a secret place and call on us, the guiding spirits of the human race, male and female. We shall answer your deepest questions and help your magicks. You are meant to be free, to dance, sing, feast and make love with our blessings. For the blessings of physical life and the blessings of spiritual life are meant to be as one within the human heart. Keep your highest dreams and strive to make them real. Let nothing stop you or turn you aside. Accept our blessings and help because life is meant to be a joy of the heart. We believe in peace and freedom and reunion with those that have gone before us into the spirit worlds. We, male and female can be found within the dust of the earth and the light of the stars, and our awareness encircles the universe and binds it to our wills. In our union is the beauty of the green earth, and the white moon among the stars, the mystery of the waters, and the desire of the heart of man. We call upon your soul to arise and join us in the creation of nature and the expansion of life into the universe. From the union of male and female all things must come and all things must return. Rejoice therefore in the duality of life and let your worship be acts of love and pleasure, beauty and strength, power and compassion, honor and humility, mirth and
reverence. Know also that we are within you, male and female and if you can not find our union within yourself you will never find it within another person. We were within you before you were formed and will be within you at your death. Rejoice"! -Anarchistbanjo
Always watching. Always hearing, but never speaking. Only an outline visible by day. They see what’s not meant to be seen. They hear what no one dares hear. It is the shadow, all shadows have Eyes that see and ears to hear. Don’t mock those who fear shadows. For they hear what the shadows say.
- Ulla Gilraen
Workings of Family and Community.
What is the meaning of family? What is its purpose? Why do we need a community and what purpose does it serve? I personally know that many to most of you are loners and very independent. So have you as an individual ever really asked that question? Or do you already know the answer and is that really the answer? Who was it that said something along the lines of ” I feel the most alone when I’m in a sea of people?” I think that’s a good place to start with on finding the answers. I believe every one has felt that way at one point or another in their lifetime. You’re feeling the absence of family and community. No one is reaching out to you and you’re not going to reach out to them for what ever reason you may have. The connections to other humans have been severed. For some that is a terrifying feeling and I think what I’m about to write will explain why. The onset truth is humanity as a whole are pack animals. We need other people to survive. Without them we become disconnected or go mad.
Now I know most people don’t like being compared to pack animals or animals for that matter but that is in essence what we are. If you don’t believe me go sit on a rooftop or a balcony in a populated area at noon and just see how people act and behave towards one another. They’re all bustling about and minding their own business completely unaware of the others around them. All are in their own little worlds going about their day. Now just like the many different types of animal herds around the world humans have many different types of herds. We’ll use sheep herds and wolf packs. Take your sheep herds for example. They wander around and graze here and there. With no real leader but, rams are ever so watchful patrolling the perimeter of the herd warning it of danger and predators. They are even ready to give their very lives for the safety and survival of the herd. Then every so often a goat or two will join the herd. They are still generally loners but they serve a purpose. They not only alert the herd to danger and predators, but if something tries to attack the herd the goats will charge the enemy. They’ll bunt, hoof and trample the hell out of that predator. If a goat’s going down it’s taking that predator with it.
They choose the fight instead of the self-sacrifice like the ram. For that reason they are tolerated by the sheep and generally left alone. The goats will serve the sheep because they know there is safety in numbers and it’s nice to have something warm to cuddle up to in the dead of winter. I think this kind of herd describes the civilian half of society very well. The sheep and rams represent the civilians and working class wandering around with no real direction. They are just living their lives with a little self-awareness and self-defense. The goats are your odd balls out, your loners and artists. The free spirits that march to their own drum. They’re apart from every one else but they still serve their purpose. Your wolf packs on the other hand are completely different from your sheep herd. You have your Alpha male and female that control and lead the pack. They’re the law within the chaos. The rest of the pack follow their lead and do as they’re told. Each and every one playing their role and doing their part. There are many fights for dominance in the pack with rivalries and competing battles. They kill off their weak and sickly pups at birth and insubordination is not tolerated. The unwanted are forced out and left to wander as lone wolves.
The young and rebellious leave on their own to start new packs or just to be independent and free. No matter the strife or argument within the pack the Alpha pair keep the order and the pack, as a whole will never let any thing get in the way of the hunt. They work as a team always and for a time leave their arguments behind them. This reminds me of the military and other aggressive groups in society. Weakness is not tolerated, nor is insubordination or rebellious behavior. Every one has to work together as a team in order to survive and live. It is a strict life and very hard. You have to be a very strong and resilient person to thrive in such a group. So In society we have sheep, goats and wolves. The wolf pack is our family. We know them well and rely on one another for survival. Granted we can mange to make it without them but it’s much harsher to do so without their aid. The goats and sheep are individual families living together in a herd. The sheep are also individuals outside the family. They are the ones with no real connections to any one in particular. They’re just going with the flow, not really alone but not a part of anything. As for the goats I’m sure you’ve met one or two goats in your life. They stand out. With things put this way can you see why we need each other? We need each other for guides, protection, aid and just company.
Keeping yourself as your own company is ok, but you get so lonely and fall into depression. If we are to succeed in building a better life for ourselves and our families we have to learn to behave like a wolf pack, to set aside all arguments so we can get the job done. We have to become tolerant like the sheep and live in peace with one another. We need to be as determined as the goat so we have the wile and courage to protect and charge the enemy. Whether that enemy is another or ourselves. Society has fallen apart over the years and we are barely functioning as a whole. We have lost our family values and don’t care what happens to other people any more. I truly hope to see things improve in my time. I’m working hard to do so in my life. So when I have children they will have a family to guide them and a community to take part in and be proud of. You wouldn’t think these things are wishes but for me they are. My family and small community have a very long way to go before I can honestly be proud of them and they start functioning as a whole. I’m trying to reach out, to improve life. I hope you do the same. There is one thing I would like you to remember. We are all connected to each other, like a pebble dropped in a pool of still water creating ripples that become waves.
“Thoughts become action. Be aware of your thoughts. Actions become habits. Be aware of your actions. Habits become your character. Be aware of your habits. Character becomes your destiny. Be aware of your character. Your destiny is your fate. You can choose your destiny but not your fate.” Blessed be to all those who read this. -Ulla Gillraen
I think your magazine is a great idea. I wrote about a couple of experiences I’ve had. If you want to use them feel free to do so. It is incidents like this that tell me there is something more to this world than meets the eye as they say. Over the years I have had several incidents that clearly told me there is something spiritual that interacts with us. One of the first things I recall was when I was teenager and made 2 trips from Iowa to Grand Marias, Minnesota, just myself on a little sight seeing. I love the North Shore of Lake Superior. Anyway, the first time I was there, I was sitting by the shore one evening and a young women comes up from behind me and sits down. We begin to talk. It was like she was not a stranger. How she talked to me was about what I needed to do in life and I recall feelings of reassurance and comfort. Hmmm, at the time I really was pretty naive and didn't think much about it. Well, a year or two later, I make a trip to Grand Marias again. Again I was sitting down by the shore, guess who walks up to me out of the fog? Yup, same young woman. How did she even know I was there? There was no way she could have seen me from the town, and it was quite foggy, so seeing was very limited. We again talked and something I still remember to this day is how it seemed she somehow knew me and knew about the things in my life I needed to deal with.
Over the years I have never forgotten those two incidents. I do remember asking her where she was from and she said from the town. If she told me her name I don't remember. I do remember she looked exactly the same each time. Was she a spirit guide, messenger, Angel, Goddess, or just an ordinary person? Was it the Goddess speaking through a person? I don't know, but I know she had a message, and that despite the stuff I would deal with in life, I was not alone and everything would be ok in the long run.
The Herbal Home Remedies
By Ulla Gilraen
Merry meet to all. I am glad to give you your first in depth look at home herbal remedies, But first a little about my self and how I came in to making herbal remedies. I have had recurring medical problems since I was four months old and have developed immunities to modern drugs that leave them virtually useless to me. Plus I have a mile long list of allergies, most being to foods and preservatives. Though I am not allergic to morphine, I have an extreme sensitivity to any medication, which binds or hinders the functions of the nervous system. In other words I can’t take painkillers or mental stimulants without extreme caution, and yes that includes the organic ones. I have learned herbal medicine through necessity and as they say necessity is the mother of invention. She was and is still my greatest teacher. All the things I will share with you are things I have learned, tested and used on my self.
As I am not certified in any legal medical field, I will not give any recipes on herbs other than the ones in the kitchen cabinet, which will be in a later issue. If you intend to take up “potions” home herbal remedies of the more advanced nature you will have to research your recipes on your own. All I will cover are the processes of brewing potions. Truly the best way to learn this craft is through trial and error. If you have questions you may contact me on the message board. With this said I hope you enjoy my article and find it useful. Blessed be.
The brewing Basics
First a warning to all. If you have a serious illness or have any allergies to plants, foods, or modern medication consult with your doctor before using any herbal remedies! This especially applies to birth control or if you are taking any prescribed medication. If you are already taking herbal supplements consult your health food specialist or doctor to make sure there won’t be any chemical reactions. Most of my ingredients to home herbal you will already find in you kitchen cupboard or at you local grocery store/ health stores. Most are harmless when eaten but, when used as a remedy they’re much stronger because of how they are prepared and applied. Here is an over look on the seven different types of remedies. Infusion Are the same as a home brewed tea. They are made with the dried leaves and petals of plants, They can be administered warm or cold as a drink, but must be made fresh every day. Decoctions Are made from tougher plant parts like bark and roots and take much longer to make. They are mainly used as a base for other remedies but can be taken on their own like an infusion. It
needs to be made fresh every other day but will produce larger quantities then an infusion. Will store cold up to two days. Tinctures Are made by steeping herbs with alcohol and water. They are much harder to make because each herb must be prepared separately before combining, plus the ratio of alcohol may need to change depending on the herb in question, as well as the type of alcohol used. The diluted Spirit most commonly used is Vodka because it contains no additives but you can use others to hide the stronger tasting herbs. Keep your tinctures in heavy dark glass bottles. They will store for up to two years. Tonics/wine infusion Are daily restoratives, you have probably taken one and never realized it. These are made with all the dried parts of the herb and brewed with wine in a ceramic jug or any thing that won’t let light in. For best results use a red wine. They can be stored up to four months. Syrups Are honey or sugar based infusions. I personally suggest honey as a base because not only can it hide most of the unpleasant flavors but also it goes down easier and preserves the infusion better then a sugar base does. The syrup will store for about three months before going bad or fermenting. You administer them the same as you would cough syrups. Compresses It’s like a hot or cold pad with an herbal kick to it. Compresses are just wraps socked in an herbal extract formula and placed on the abrasion or sore area. The extracts formula can be an infusion, decoction, or a tincture diluted with water / warm or cold. Poultices Are generally made with fresh herbs. You boil the fresh herbs you plan on using and ring out the excess water. Then place
the warm herbs on the injured area and wrap with medical gauze. Now for you novice potion brewers please do not attempt to make a potion of any kind with out a recipe. “ I made that mistake! It’s not pleasant just trust in that.” If you do have one, even if it’s from an herbal remedy book fully research the herb you are using before making or taking it. First reason being potion making is a type of chemistry and if you’re a gram off, the whole potion could be botched. The second one being you can never know too much about what you’re working with. Plus a better knowledge of your ingredients will help with making better potions. I do not suggest beginners harvest wild herbs and ingredients of the more advanced and potent levels. The reason being is even a seasoned brewer can mistake some herbs, for other herbs at different levels of growth. “And you really don’t want to make that kind of mistake. You really, really don’t.” “To say the least, herbs are a tricky little bunch and they guard themselves and their secrets well. It takes a trained eye and cushioned hand to win their favor and even then they still bite.” Your Brewing tools Now that you know your categories and types of potions it’s time you learned about your brewing tools. Do not use your cooking utensils or pots and pans for your potion making. You will need a separate set. You’ll be needing certain types of cooking tools for potion making any way and will have to sterilize after every use. A good washing won’t cut it. I had the personal misfortune of finding out the hard way why. “As an example I brewed up my sinuses potion and when I was done cleaned up like I always do, I washed every thing up and put it back where it goes. The next morning I ended up using the same pot and pan. To say the least my apple tea tasted like horseradish and my eggs had a distinct after flavor
of asparagus! Not my idea of an appetizing first meal. I never did get those flavors out of them. ” I found out later the reason why. Most of my crockery is tin or aluminum and brass, The flavors of your potions will cling to those metals longer then a skunk’s stink to a dog, even after you wash them. Plus tin/aluminum and brass will taint your potions. So here are ways to prevent this. Your tools need to be made out of certain materials. Use ones made from enamel, glass or steel. Every thing else can be made of wood or steel. “Never use aluminum for cooking or potions. They may absorb the metal and it can be toxic. I already told you why not to use them” Don’t use plastic for storage or brewing both because it absorbs chemicals and residues meaning you can’t use them again. All your storage/ potion bottles need to be sterilized dark glass. The reason for this is light will break down the chemicals in your potions as well as age them faster, just like it does milk. Here is a list of all the tools you will need. Stew pot Saucepan Tea pot sieves Multiple sized strainers Funnels A set of glass bowls Wooden spoons Gauze One electric scale An assortment of sterilized dark glass or ceramic jugs, jars, and bottles. You well need many sizes with both screw tops and corks. Sterilizing your equipment is simple, all you have to do is boil them in water for three minutes and dry in a hot oven. Wait to
use them until they are cool and store separate from your other cookery.
Book references suppliers
The most helpful books I have ever read are.
Home herbal a practical family guide to making herbal remedies By Penelope ody. I really wish I had that book years ago. If you are to buy any herbal book buy that one first, you will be able to avoid many of my mishaps and self Umm . . . poisonings. And the next book is . . . Herbal medicine By Dian Dincin Buchman, Ph.D. Most recipes I use are from that book or derived from it. Rodale’s Encyclopedia of organic gardening Is very helpful in many ways as well as: Rodale’s encyclopedia of herbs Jude’s Herbal home remedies Both were good reads and have several good to know tips in there. Now this next book I don’t even know if it’s still in print or not but it was my first intro to potion brewing. Using plants for healing
By Nelson coon Now if you have kids I found this book to be just precious and loads of fun even though it has nothing to do with potion making. Nanny Oggs Cookbook By Terry Pratchett The web You can find almost every thing you will need on the web as far as supplies go. But when purchasing herbs on-line please be careful make sure they have the correct scientific name on the label and the Latin name. If they don’t you can’t be positive of buying the right type of herb. I find it safest to grow your own.
The beautiful blonde maiden Dances before the bridge Her sensuous naked figure Trembles and sways In the silver moon light Her soft musical voice Lures me, under her spell I can not think Only follow as she Leads me beneath the Dark stone bridge She is mine But even as I touch her She oozes through my fingers And quietly, swiftly, slips away
Another thing is how I met my second wife. Have you ever met someone and for some reason they leave an impression and you wonder why you noticed them or why they "feel" different? Well, I was married to my first wife and lived in Bemidji, Minnesota at the time. I had sisters living in Hibbing, Minnesota and Duluth, Minnesota. We would drive over to see them. Anyway, on one such trip, wife, kids, and I decided to stop in Grand Rapids, Minnesota at the Hardees restaurant. A young lady waited on us and for some reason she seemed to stand out from everyone else. There was something about her that felt strange or unusual. To this day I remember the incident and the feeling that went with it. Anyway a few tears later, I had moved away from Bemidji but had to return to the college to get some papers. I decided to go to the student lounge for a cup of coffee. As I walked through the place guess who almost ran over me? Same young lady that had waited on us at Hardees a few years earlier. For some reason I recognized her. I didn't think a whole lot more about it at the time. I was working at the state hospital in Brainerd. Ah ha, now it gets interesting. I had divorced my first wife the summer/fall of 1987. In December of that year, guess who I saw coming out of my boss’s office? Yup, same young lady.
She was even wearing the same dress she had been wearing when I saw her at Bemidji. For some unknown reason I had turned and looked down the hall as she walked out of his office and down the stairs. Had I not been in the hallway or turned around to look I would have totally missed her as it took only like 2 seconds for her to exit his office and go around a corner out of site. Then my boss comes to me and tells me this young lady will be an intern there and I'll be her supervisor/ mentor. By that time I thought it was a little strange how our paths kept crossing. Well, to make a long story short, we ended up getting married 2 years later. Hmmm, coincidence or synchronicity?
Here Once Again
Time. Sleeping, longing, lusting rest. Such things are my dreams? Are manifested cry’s The hums of battle drums? Piercing cry’s of Who’s, when’s, and why’s. Sorrow’s never tolled. Joy’s never known. Are manifested cry’s The hums of battle drums. What are we.. . . . Why are we. . . When, where are we . . Sleeping, longing, lusting rest. Such things are dreams. Bliss, calm,
A sleeping soul. A weeping crow. An endless snow of timeless unknowns. Flowers, flocks of birds, water flowing free, All dancing to the rhythm. Timeless, wordless, Endless songs of the heart beat rhythms. Let me dance. Let me sing. Let me sleep an endless dream. Sleeping, longing, lusting rest. Such things are my dreams.
- Ulla Gilraen
When my son was 4 or 5 years old he had a "scary dream" one night. The next morning he told us about "3 dark shadows" that were in his room the night before. Maybe not unusual in itself for a child to have a dream or even a scary dream. Well, guess what happened to me the same night? That night I also had a very vivid dream. In my dream 3 old women dressed in black hooded robes or cloaks came to me and asked if I was ready to come with them. I said, "not yet, I have stuff to do yet to get ready". I remember in the dream that I was thinking that I needed to prepare and be ready for something, like a journey, and also that I needed to still take care of my family. It was very vivid and I remember it very clearly to this day. The feeling I had was not one of them being death and I don't recall feeling fear either. Maybe it had to do with death, but I am not sure. I do remember thinking about the 3 Norns at the time. The impression / feeling I felt was one of being ready to join them as witches. The feeling was one of needing to get ready to leave the world as I knew it or to work towards that goal.
Goddess of a Black Veil
I live in the shadows of the unknown. I am the darkness that dwells In your own mind.
I am the artisan, the geisha In the black veils, Who sits in the plaza by the deep well. The people fear, hate and love me. I sing for them, I dance for them, I even tell their fortunes for a price. Only the women come to me. The men seek me out, But they never approach. I know their fears, yet I’ll never tell. For I am of the darkest shadows. I am the unknown and I belong To the black veils.
- Ulla Gilraen
Don’t You Dare Take That Picture!-Jade*Horse
Another thing that has happened off and on over the years is dreaming about meeting someone I have never met or ever known. Usually when I have a vivid dream like this within 2 weeks I'll end up meeting that person. They will be wearing the exact clothes I saw in the dream, and say exactly what they said in the dream. I learned quickly to not tell them what they are gonna tell me before they do because I get some pretty strange looks when I do that!
Plague fires lit the way as villagers gathered dogs at the bay. Full moon rising over anger and fear, they shuffled as one towards a cottage near the woods. Pitchforks, glinting by the light of torches pitched in haste shook with the fury of vicious intent. Murmurs rose from the ranks then shouts when amber eyes were spotted peering from a leafless copse. “It’s them, the witches!” rose a cry and with cowardly glee they launched upon the animal. In the cottage a flaxen haired girl clung to a tall woman’s skirts. “Mama” she said, “What happened to Kat?”
SHHH” the woman murmered swiftly closing shutters and dousing the lights. When bloodlust had run it course and the animal named Kat was part of the dust a great sigh was shared, as they turned back to their village. Funeral pyres still burning brightly met their eyes, rekindling fears desire. “It’s not done!” came a cry from a voice tainted with hate. They looked back at the cottage in the woods, darkened. Only shafts of moonbeams lit the neatly thatched roof.. As if sharing one mind torches flew from heavy hands onto straw and hay so innocently lain. The cottage burned, a column of light exposing venomous grief on the faces who needed a face for their plight. As flames flickered low and with sun on the rise, they turned dull eyes
once again toward home. Deep in the woods a tall cloaked woman held a flaxen haired child close. Soft purring could be heard from the arms of the child as she stroked the silky fur of an animal named Kat. - A. Starchild
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