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Which way to Hell?
For some, the Land of the Dead is a place of fire, but here in the North we know better.
It's ice all the way.
Which way lies Hell? Norðr ok níðr, says Snorri: “To the north and down.” "North and nether," one might say.
Oh, she's beautiful but deadly, Winter. Whether she comes as screeching black hag or ice-blue maiden, her embrace withers and kills.
Title: Strange Magic: A Yancy Lazarus Novel (Pilot Episode)...
If the orientation of the monuments that they left behind is anything to go by, the peoples of megalithic Britain observed both quarters (sunsteads and evendays) and cross-quarters (Samhain, Imbolc, etc.).
Just like we do.
Different peoples, different ways. As they've come down to us, the cross-quarters are largely a phenomenon of Keltic cultures, the quarters Germanic; hence the names by which they're generally called.
For this reason, some purists have decided to restrict themselves to observance only of quarters or cross-quarters. Well, everyone gets to make his or her own call. My own position is that purism is its own punishment.
According to maverick historian Stephen J. Yeates, the Anglo-Saxon tribe known as the Hwicce—the original Tribe of Witches—settled in the territory of the Keltic people known as the Dobunni, and both archaeology and genetics suggest that there's strong continuity between the two peoples, both demographically and culturally.
In other words, we would expect the tribe of Witches to be (culturally) a Kelto-Germanic amalgam.
Which, of course, is exactly what we are.
I confess: I am a book addict. Some people buy shoes, or clothes, or watches. I buy books. They are my go-to for comfort and inspiration. Digital, mass market, paperback, hardcover; picture book, reference book, fiction, nonfiction, poetry -- doesn't matter. I devour books, absorbing stories and information and artwork....
I'm not sure if it's realistic or not, but the New Year always fills me with hopes for peace. The Winter Solstice starts that process, and the cathartic idea of the new year follows up with an "out with the old, in with the new" type of energy. But sometimes, a voice that is "old" brings us "new" insights.
With all the hub-ub about diversity, immigration, refugees, and religious dialogue, I thought it would be nice to share a poem from a very renowned, very ancient Syrian poet. His name was Abu 'L'Ala Ahmad ibn 'Abdallah al-Ma'arri. Not surprisingly, he is most often referred to only as al-Ma'arri. He was born in Aleppo, and lived from about 973-1057 CE....
when time runs backwards,
and the world whirls giddily widdershins.
Happy Feast of Fools!
Htrae eht nopu tuo deruop si evol ym dna,
Gnivil lla fo Rehtom eht ma I, dloheb rof,
ecifircas ni thgua dnamed I od ron.
Erofeb enog evah ohw esoht htiw noinuer dna,
modeerf, ecaep, htaed dnoyeb dna;
lanrete tirips eht fo egdelwonk evig I, htrae nopu....
Tarot can be used for so much more than just divination. In fact, my favorite use of the cards is for focused intention and manifestation. Want to expand a particular energy in your life? Enhance an area? Invite more? Then consciously choose the card/s that represent whatever it is you want to attract; don’t rely on randomness or blind “Card of the Day” pulls to guess what it is you really want. (That’s a bit like wanting to make a specific recipe, going into a grocery store blindfolded and then pulling things off the shelves for your order!)....