Jun 20, 2011

Midsummer and the festival of St.John the Babtist

Birth of St. John the Baptist, Litha and the longest day

Wether You are a Christian, a Neo-Pagan or actual Pagan, druid descendant, or simply European J there are some feast days ahead. From 21st to 24th of June, great deal of people all over the globe celebrate this time of great power. The daytime is longest on this very date, and many rituals take place, on this very day, such as inevitable bonfires, a symbol of the holiday and a method of banishing everything ill, a mean of purification and a beacon for blessings. People dance, burn Oak wood and herbs , sing , celebrate and let the energy rise and be shared amongst every participant. While each culture has it’s own way of celebrating these days, most traditions share some universal symbols and rites such as mentioned bonfires, and herb gathering.

Traditional herbs associated with the day differ in different systems and traditions, but some tend to be recurrent in different lore more than other, such as Marigold, and St.John’s wort. Often mentioned are Chamomile, Vervain and Daisy, some of which are typical Solar plants. Oak wood is burned, and a Emeralds are worn and used to decorate altars.

In Wiccan and Pagan world this is the time when the power of Green man, an archetype symbol, and a chthonic spirit, or according to Wiccans, an aspect of Solar deity , is at it’s highest point. The figure of green man is seen even in popular literature and popular culture, cunningly hidden behind faces of Robyn Hood or Peter Pan.

For Christians, such symbolism is simply unacceptable, and furthermore blasphemous. Not because “pagans worship the de*il” , but because this is a day dedicate d to the birth of St.John the Baptist, one of the central characters of Christian religion and a powerful and respected Saint. Therfore, it would be a blasphemy to celebrate anything other than the birth of a Holy man that baptized our Lord, on Jordan.

In general occultism this is a time of the year that carries three beneficial energies, energy of the fertility, energy of the money, and energy that intertwines finely between our and the other-world, connecting them, and making interaction between man and spirits so much easier. This is one of the three days when the veil is thin , others being Beltaine and Smahain.

I am however certain than You knew plenty of this, or at least could find this information elsewhere. So that is why I am gonna add some more “exotic” info, and share with You some, almost, completely secret beliefs and rites associated with these days ( 21st-24th of June ) practiced on mysterious Balkan peninsula

Summer solstice on Balkan peninsula magick and folklore

While “old” witchery, showing traces of early Celtic folklore and beliefs and European folk lore is still very much alive in Balkan, this is the time of the year when it’s syncretism get’s in the centre of the focus.The words folk of Balkan will commonly associate with the 21st of June are St.John the Baptist and luck. Mothers give their daughters two coins, a golden one, which the maiden will place in the right shoe, and the silver one to be placed in the left shoe. Equipped in this manner, maiden goes to attend the Mass, or goes to her own wedding ( it is considered to be a very lucky day for marriage ) , or to see notation or priest, and she will never be without money, according to folk beliefs.

Curious girls go out to pluck seven or nine different flowers from seven or nine different fields, and then they place them beneath pillow to get a glimpse of their predestinated life partner in dreams. It even happens ( and not too rarely , even nowadays in remote village areas of Balkan ) that If a girl would meet a boy of approximately her age, after she would be done with flower picking, she gets married with him. I can see how this omen can be abused by a foxy and cheeky young people , not to use stronger words :D

Magick practitioners and the cunning folk light fires since the night of 21st of june till morn of the 24th, and utter the charm : Light comes and brings me the luck ! nine times in nine cycles each of those 3 nights. Some instead of small bonfires on some hillside clearance, burn 9 candles in safety of their home pronouncing the very same charm. Each night after the repletion of the charm some sheep milk is warmed over the candle or bonfire and there small sips and taken. On a last day, after all of the previously mentioned ritualistic procedures are done ( fire, charms, sheep milk ) the practitioner takes dried St.John wart sprigs, makes Crosses out of them, four Crosses, and places each on each quarter, which clears away the bad spirits and calls for spiritual and occult powers to settle in practitioner and raises practitioner spiritual potential.

St John wart is gathered each of the 3 days of celebration , preferably in the noon, as it is believed it holds greatest potential just then. Crosses or bracelets and necklaces fashioned from St. John’s wart, especially that gathered on this day are believed to protect even from that magick, considered to be most dangerous type of magick on Balkans, and that is fairy magick. Incense made out of St.John’s wart plucked on these days , and Frankincense is used as a sort of “high magick incense”, to conjure extra power in rituals and spells, to cleanse oneself and area prior to work with spirits and compel demons to do one's biddings

The 24th of the June is reserved for the spirits of ancestors which are greeted as they prepare to depart back to other-world on this day . It is customary to light 44 candles in house, and in the morning You can see curious things in Balkan villages. Superstitious people place their heads among the grass to get “washed” with the morning dew, associated with old Slavic spirit Volos. It is believed that this very morning dew will ensure health throughout the next year, particularly in terms of eyes, ears and head. Herbs are plucked and used to fashion small rings or loops, size of a bracelet , which are hung to shield from wicked spells and bring prosperity.

Balkan people associates ancestral spirits, plant spirits and animal spirits as well as Volos and St.John with days 21st-24th of June , and they are believed to be particularly eager to help, working together on 24th of June, so that is why this day Is believed to ensure success in all things done respectfully, more so if magick related.

So now, equipped with some interesting information I was able to persuade old folk to give away, or have found in some old local anthropological accounts , as well as general ideas presented in the begging of the article, go enjoy in these holidays and light and luck they bring. Whichever be Your faith or beliefs , and don’t forget to gather some herbs these day, Marigolds and St.John’s wart in particular ;)

Blessings from Shadow , and lots of luck

NOTES: This article was written and composed by me, Should You desire to use any part of it elsewhere, fine, but GIVE CREDITS, in form of either my e mail Shadow-333@hotmail.com or a direct link to this post. The fitrst image depicts St.John the babttist and is from http://www.wikipedia.com/ , the second shows St.John's wort and is edited by myself, and the third is a lovely pic from http://www.cauldronliving.com/ used for illustrative purposes purely with no ill will, ALL RIGHTS to owner

Have a nice Midsummer ;)

Jun 7, 2011

ESP and second sight

It was always a prominent human desire to know what will happen next, what the future hold and to get some guidance from Higher Power. The people who were able to “read the future”, consult the spirits or read the omen, were always respected and even had very high ( though of course “unofficial” ) social positions. Be their abilities innate, gained and honed, or both, they were consulted by emperors and later dictators and war generals. The nature of “reader’s” or “Seer’s” work, much like any kind of spiritual, or even plainly “intangible” practice or work, made it a fruit - bearing ground for hustles and hoax of all kinds, but that being a whole another story.

In this article I wish to discuss some general terms, and practice they describe, such as mantic arts or divinations, spequlums, readings, extrasensory perception mostly really , and alike, and give some basic, official information about them, rather that pseudo-poetical new age claptrap on the topic. As I stated few times before, this is a blog that focuses on practicality of magick, rather than endless philosophical discussions on “ethics of magick” or purpose of same, therefore, I will also be giving examples on how to strengthen and develop our spiritual awareness and consequently supernatural abilities.

Different cultures and religious magickal systems, have different viewpoints and theories, regarding extrasensory perception and “psychic” gifts that derivate from it, as well as PSY abilities. Christian church for example calls them “chrisms” and according to Christian theology person is either born with them, or gains abilities as a reward for spiritually faithful, clean and responsible life, mysticism and fasting, both alimental and mental ( no pun intended ) . Considering this according to Christians, seeking these gifts through any form of occult work or meditation is wrong, and potentially sinful, as only G’d decides who shall have these abilities. I myself, as a Christian believe that, it is not all that simple, meaning If You want to develop some psychic gift, which are innate to our souls in one form or another, and You have a nice respectful goals, I doubt it’s a sin. To further elaborate, the reason why chrisms are honed mostly by Saint’s and mystics is because their way of life and their religious/social/mental awareness being high enough not to abuse the same. Simply put, if you want psychic gifts only so that You could win lottery, stick with Aunt Sally’s J but do not expect to have Lord’s blessings upon Your work. If You seek psychic gifts for better understanding of omens Lord sends us, for guidance of Yourself and others, or to prevent evil/bad things from happening, than we could say it’s somewhat OK. Otherwise, most other cultures and systems see nothing innately evil in them. Metaphorically speaking they are like frozen fish, You can melt it and feed someone with a healthy meal ( omega 3 acids enriched ) or You can smack someone on a back of their head with it, meaning ability itself is neutral, the user makes it good or bad.

Acording to parapsychologists, ESP is a human ability of reception of sensory experiences and information, without the use of physical ( medically recognized ) senses, but rather through mind. We must however, note that sometimes senses are indirectly included, some psychics need to touch items or people they work with or even use other sences. Sometimes I smell the air and I can tell wether it will rain, be windy or sunny, or it might hail perhaps, or even if something good or bad is to happen ( of general, rather than personal importance ). Psychology and consequently parapsychology as a branch of the same, gave us so many useful information and guidelines regarding ESP inducement and methods, as well as connection of such altered states of consciousness with cognitive process and sensory experience. Parapsychologist note some fundamental “laws” about mechanism of ESP work, such as increased ESP as a result of sensory experience deprivation, or sheep-goat effect ( people that believe in ESP have so much better results in ESP tests than people that do not believe in supernatural ), theories about REM sleep phase, alpha brain waves and their association with ESP events. Some of the great names and “fathers” of modern parapsychology and psychology of altered mind states include J.B Rhine and Louise Rhine, Russel Targ, Harold E. Putkoff etc.

Celts have a special name for it ( Scotts to be more precise ) dahulah, and it loosely translates as clairvoyance ( including ability to see spirits ). People often confuse remote seeing, clairvoyance , precognition, mediumship abilities and spiritual intuition for synonyms, which they are not. They are all different forms of extrasensory perception with their proprietary fields in which they work/appear. So let’s shed some light on some basic types of extrasensory perception ( to make it more clear I systematized abilities in types and families in this article, please keep in mind, this is not an official parapsychology-ical classification )



· Type: PSY

· Type: ESP

- Family clairsensitive : Clairvoyance, Clairaudience, Clairsentience , Clairalience,Clairgustance, Retrognotion, Remote seeing, Precognition , Psychometry

- Family guidance – Spiritual intuition, Intuitive aptitude, Mediumship abilities

- Family mental – Telepathy, Spiritual Empathy

Spells, energy work and recipes for empowerment of psychic abilities

Spiritual work of any sort ( prayer, meditation, spell casting ) will in due time develop some specific ability/abilities in one. What they will be, depends on the nature of practitioner. Introvert, melancholic people are most likely to develop ESP powers, such as empathy or psycometry, while extrovert sanguinary people are more likely to develop psychokinetic abilities of some form.

Sometimes however, from one or another reason, we want some help in faster and/or stronger ability inducement or development, sort of “boost tool” to call it that way.

Spells and recipes material ( materia magicka )

Burning purple and white candles with intention, and/or words of power will be of significant help. One should dress them with Psychic oil, or King Solomon’s wisdom oil, Clarity oil, Master key oil, St Cyprian oil, or any of the family of empowering oil for most prominent results.

Helpful botanicals include: Yarrow ( flower heads mostly ) Lemongrass essential oil, Flax seeds, Althaea roots, Mugwort herb, Wormwood herb, Acacia resin, Frankincense resin/tears etc .

Opal stones, Lodestones, Heliotropes, Quartz, Amethyst, Lapis Lazuli, Sodalite, Uleksite, Amber, Fluorite, Citrine, all make good choices in abilities boosting and development stones/charms.
Psalm 23rd ,Prayers to Holy Spirit, Prayers to Saint Cyprian, prayers to St. Claire, Moon pentacles from Claviula Solomonis, All seeing Eye ( as symbols ) are all helpful and should be incorporated in rituals for development of psychic gifts.

Moon and water as element are associated with ESP, and Angels are Asariel, Uriel.


Here are a few ( among many useful exercises ) for psychic gifts development

Randomly cover Your wrist watch , and try to guess the time ( precognition exercise )

Take a deck of playing cards. Draw one card at time, and without looking it try to guess card color. Half guesses or more indicate psychic talents. After a while one may pass onto guessing is it a picture or number card as well ( precognition exercise )

Look at some fare away object or scenery for a while. Than close Your eyes and try to visualize that picture with as much details as possible. Open Your eyes and check just how accurate were You ( clairvoyance and remote seeing exercise )

Ask someone to lay out number of object before You, the object we use in everyday life like pen or fork for example. Don’t look as they do it, then still with Your eyes closed pass Your hand over the objects trying to guess what they are ( clairvoyance and remote seeing exercise )

Get a new pack of handkerchiefs , give few out to some of Your friends , to hold for a few minutes, and touch their faces with. Let them right their initials on inside of the handkerchief so when folded, the initials cannot be seen. Shuffle the folded handkerchiefs and holding them try to guess which one was handled by who ( clairsentence and psychometry exercise )

NOTES: Please mind that the article was composed and written by myself, therfore should You wish to use any part of it elswhere, give credits Shadow of Shadows magick place, Shadow-333@hotmail.com IMAGE CREDITS : The first image shows Zener cards, and is a common image , available in public domain , this particular one came from Wikipedia , Second image depicts Alpha brain waves associated with ESP, and is edited by myself , original source is news Softpedia

Blessings !
from Shadow :)