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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

A talisman is decorative object, or objet, that also provides protection and has magical properties. A talisman can be any article or symbol that you believe has mystical qualities. As we know, many gems and crystals have special innate powers. With a talisman, the special powers can be naturally present or instilled during a ritual. People often confuse amulets with talismans, but they differ in this significant way: Amulets positively protect the wearer from harm, evil, and negativity. Talismans actively transform the wearer to have certain powers. For example, the supernatural sword Excalibur, imbued with supremacy by the Lady of the Lake, gave King Arthur magical powers. 

Grimoires (spell books) offer instruction on making talismans. The reasons for using talismans are many—for love, for wealth, for luck with gambling, for the gift of a silver tongue, for a good memory, for the prevention of death. Whatever you can think of, there is probably a talisman for that exact purpose!

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

 Blockchain is like the Wizard of Oz - The Black Liszt

Word-geekery alert

Good old English.

Consider -ard (or, occasionally, -art)*, what the Online Etymological Dictionary refers to as a “suffix of derogation.” Attached to an adjective or verb, it denotes someone who carries said action or quality to excess.

A bastard is base-born.

A braggart brags too much.

Before it became associated with a particular kind of bird, buzzard was a term for a species of raptor considered not good enough to hawk with.

A coward is easily cowed.

Though dastard now means “cad”, the word originally denoted an excessively stupid person, someone who was dazed.

A drunkard drinks (or is drunk) too much.

Stinkard needs no explanation.

Which brings us, of course, to wizard.

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
Poem: What There is Today
Here we are in this moment,
golden with possibility.
There is wind around
our shoulders.
There is earth beneath our feet.
There are new ideas
waiting to be born.
There is power curled within us.
There is magic coiled in our veins
and tickling along our spines.
There is sunshine to warm us
and water to soothe us.
There are people to love
and stories to tell.
There are lessons to learn
and poems to share.
There are dreams to teach us
and feathers to find.
There are trees to shade us
and stones to inspire us.
There is laughter to share
and joy to savor.
There is a life to weave
from all the moments we have.
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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

A few months after the first Sweetwood Grand Sabbat—that's the tribal gathering of the Midwest Tribe of Witches, which takes place when the corn first ripens in the fields, and the berries hang red on the rowans—a long-time tribal member, while at the store one day, ran into some Sabbat first-timers that she'd met that year.

They talked for a while. When it was time, she said—we all get such a charge out of saying this—Well, see you at the Sabbat.

No, they told her, they weren't planning to go back.

Flabbergasted, my friend had to know: Why ever not?

It was too emotionally intense, they told her, and too culturally immersive.

Too emotionally intense, and too culturally immersive.

That's got to be the best bad review that I've ever heard.

It's also a thoughtful and articulate review. As we all know, the Sabbat is not for everyone. For those accustomed to the well-meaning but undemanding eclecticism of your average pagan festival, a crash course in tribal immersion like the Sabbat might well overwhelm.

But for those of us who belong, there's no place else like it. As Jeanne Dibason told the court at her trial in 1620, “The Sabbat is the witch's true Paradise.”

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