Tag Archive: featured occult

Dec 23

Divining With Birds

Katie Snow

Katie Snow

Chair: Aliens & UFO's at Dead Ringer Paranormal
My name is Kathy Snow however in the Paranormal world I am simply known as katie! My team and I take the paranormal field very seriously and have been up and down the eastern seaboard investigating known and unknown locations. My team consists of all family members giving us the opportunity to work well together with no drama. I am a national as well as internationally published paranormal writer. Our evidence has been shown on My ghost story caught on camera and we work hard within our community to bring awareness and understanding to the field. There are four ordained ministers on the team. After 16 years in the field we no longer do in house investigations as we are out trying to find unknown haunted locations and we consult on cases other teams may have questions on. After founding 3 teams, we have recently relocated and our new team name is Dead Ringer Paranormal. We are proud of the work we do and try to show the community it is a scientific field of study and a lot of work goes into what we all do. We are an old world team meaning we investigate with just what we need, we do not hook up wires and tons of equipment, we believe in studying the paranormal in traditional proven ways. I am excited and proud to have been asked to be a rep for NPS..
Katie Snow

Latest posts by Katie Snow (see all)

7Auspicy means messages coming from the sky and has been practiced throughout the world by many cultures. The word itself is of Latin origin meaning observer of birds. In Rome, flight auspicy took place within a sacred space called a templem.

Bird Flight Interpretation

The choice is yours on whether you use a single bird or a full flock to divine. There is no right or wrong way only your personal attention is required. Some places have more variety of birds than others so flock reading may be more advantageous, however if birds are more scarce or if you have time, divining with a solitary bird is acceptable.

Simply ask a question or think of a question that requires a course of action and simply watch the behavior of the bird(s).

If the bird is light or brightly colored it indicates immediate action, a darker bird would be to wait. If your reading in a flock see which bird takes flight first, as with all birds, shades of light and dark do appear.

Direction of the birds flight also plays a role. If the bird(s) fly to the right it means a smooth passage in any venture and action should be taken however, if they fly from the left there will be delays and remaining silent for a bit may be best. If the bird(s) fly towards you it means happier times are in store for you, but flying away from you suggest tact and caution before moving forward.

Now there are other indicators that are also used such as the height of flight. The higher the flight the better the omen. If the bird flies upward in direction the better the outcome and success will come without much effort. If the flight is erratic, such as landing and flying only to repeat the outcome will have to defeat obstacles and requires more efforton your part.

The course of the bird also encompasses the reading. If the bird(s) suddenly change direction or course, sudden changes will be headed your way and you may feel in doubt so re-examine your feelings. Birds hovering right above your head tells you to beware of new friends and criticism.

A singing bird that takes flight in song it is a good sign and your answer is to move forth, but if the bird lands and utters a cry more caution is needed. If you hear the birds singing on the dawn of a new day close your eyes. Let the song form pictures and words in your mind and your answer will come forth.

Whether you are a believer in divining with birds, animals have been used not only in this form of divination but totems, amulets and good luck charms for centuries. The I Ching used broken tortoise shells, The Etruscans used hens and the Babylonians studied Oxen when splashed with water.

Dec 23

New Year’s Celebrations and Resolutions: An Occult Perspective

Lillee Allee

Lillee Allee

Representative at National Paranormal Society
Lillee Allee has studied religion, spirituality and paranormal investigation for over 40 years. She is the widow of John D. Allee, an internationally known dark magician. She continues to consult in paranormal investigation. Her specialties include: Marian and cultural spiritual phenomena/apparitions, spiritual support to teams and clients who want spiritual counseling after investigation, evp work and old school audio, the accuracy and research of past life regression and seance, and spiritual protection. Lillee was also one of the first to incorporate trained canines into paranormal investigations. She hosts a radio program on the para-x.com network, Happy Mediums, with Debra Ann Freeman, who also consults with paranormal investigative teams in Southern New England. Lillee is a published author and journalist, and legal clergy with degrees in psychology and mass communication. Lillee walks on the middle path sees learning as a life-long endeavor and is looking to make a difference and contribution to this field before she too will be heard on someone’s EVP. Lillee is always available to educate and consult and continues to enjoy guesting on other’s radio and television programs.
Lillee Allee

Latest posts by Lillee Allee (see all)

1While some people spend New Year’s eve entertaining with fortune-telling and séances, most folks are busy enjoying good company, great food and even better legal beverages. Many in America cuddle up with family and good friends and watch the annual ball drop in New York City. Others throughout the world have more traditional pursuits where the emphasis may be on superstitious or occult traditions.

History.com offers a wide perspective of celebrations country to country. Some countries have come to think of peas, beans or other legumes as resembling money. These foods, thought to resemble discs or coins, were used in traditional meals, to bring financial success to friends and family. Lentils are an Italians favorite, while black-eyed peas are the choice in the deep South of the United States. For Spanish-speaking cultures, a dozen grapes are eaten to bring in wish fulfillment. Pork is considered, by Cubans, Austrians, Hungarians and others, to ring in progress and prosperity. For the Netherlands, Holland, Greece and others, a round cake or a cake in the shape of a ring, states that the year has come full circle. The Swedes and Norwegians make a rice pudding with an almond in it. The lucky diner who gets the nut will have great luck in the new year.

The idea of making resolutions goes back much farther than one would think. It was first found among the ancient Babylonians who made promises to please their gods and start the new year with a clean slate. This even extended to repaying debts. Many in the English speaking countries believed that this was to be a time of forgiveness of wrongs and slights by others.

Bill Petro explains that resolutions were also a part of ancient Roman life, and January comes from the name of the two-faced god, Janus, known for beginnings and endings, and protection while crossing bridges. In pagan Rome, most resolutions were about improving one’s morality and behaviors toward others. After Christianization, Romans focused on prayers and petitions and fasting. Early American Puritans rejected the pagan name of January, according to Petro, and called it simply first month, but interestingly the celebrations were non-existent but the resolutions returned to being about being a better person to others.

2Many point to the fact that many well-meaning people think about resolutions, but fail to act and achieve. Alex Epstein, ignores the naysayers about New Years Resolutions and the sad statistics about how many people actually follow through on their good intentions. He suggests making a resolution “to do the most important thing of all: to take your happiness seriously.”

From an occult perspective, we are simply talking about manifestations. It is important to note that manifestations are not miracles. To simply it even further, occultists will often say “as above, so below.” A secular viewpoint would change this to from the mind to the mundane. Thus, do not make a resolution to quit smoking, the resolution would be to make a serious attempt. Do not say you will lose 50 lbs, state that your weight will be at a healthier point in 6 months. Never say that you will marry “John or Jane Doe” but instead ask for the perfect person for you to come into your life. And… as for money… never ask for dollars, ask instead for financial comfort in the coming months. Do not visualize how to do it, visualize the results.

May you have a healthier, happier and more prosperous year to come!

Sources:

http://billpetro.com/history-of-new-years-resolutions

Epstein, Alex. (2006). The Meaning of New Year Resolutions. Retrieved from http://www.aim.org/gu…/the-meaning-of-new-years-resolutions/

http://www.history.com/topics/holidays/new-years

Nov 29

Green Witchcraft

images22_400x400 (1)By N.P.S. Representative Sha She

1. Witch /wich/ n. 1. Sorceress, esp. a woman supposed to have dealings with the devil or evil spirits. 2. Hag. 3. Fascinating girl or woman. Witchdoctor tribal magician of primitive people. Witch Hazel 1. American shrub with bark yielding an astringent lotion. 2. this lotion. Witch-hunt campaign directed against a particular group of those holding unpopular or unorthodox views, esp. communists. Witching adj. Witch-like adj.

1. Enchantress, sibyl, pythoness. 2. fury, crone, gorgon, ogress. Witchdoctor-see sorcerer.
2. Witchcraft /wichkraft/ n. use of magic; sorcery.
3. Witchery /wicheree/ n. 1. Witchcraft. 2. Power exercised by beauty or eloquence or the like.
4. Pagan /paygen/ n. 1. nonreligious person; pantheist; heathen. 2. a person following a polytheistic or pantheistic religion. 3. Hedonist. Adj. 1a. of pagans. b. irreligious. 2. Pantheistic. paganish adj. paganism n. panagism n. nonbeliever, idolater, infidel, adj. 1. Idolatrous, gentile. See also Heathen.
5. No mention of Wicca anywhere.

Oxford University Press, Inc. (1997). Edited by Frank R. Abate. The Pocket Oxford Dictionary and Thesaurus. American Edition. Oxford. “The World’s Most Trusted Dictionaries”.

It’s not hard to see in the definitions above the negative connotation to Witchcraft, Paganism, and the elimination of Wicca all together in the dictionary. This would be an example of the battle those who follow these traditions have lived with and continue to live with to this day. The sheer lack of explanation and outright fabrication of the foundation of these traditions is appalling and unjust. This article will shed some light on the subject. I am hoping those who have an interest, will be able to understand fully what these traditions value. Hopefully, it will answer the question; “Why so many turn to these paths to worship, grow, and practice?”

Let’s start out with some definitions that actually fit these traditions;

Wicca-A modern religion with spiritual roots in nature. The belief in the God and Goddess (no matter what the pantheon), reincarnation, magick (Magic = slight of hand/Parlor tricks. Magick = personal power combined with natural power for a expected outcome), ritual observances of astronomy and agricultural phenomenon, the use of magickal circles for rituals.

Witch-Practitioner of magick related to herbs, stones, colors, weather, moon cycles etc… A witch can be solitary (choosing to practice alone) or a member of a coven. This definition has nothing to do with Satanism-this has its own belief system.

Witchcraft-Is a religion of personal experiences and of personal choices. There are many categories as to the different foundations and traditions in which the witch may choose to follow as their path. The “craft” of the witch is by personal choice in which the witch uses her/his personal power in combination with the energies of natural objects and or tools.

Pagan/Neo-Pagan/Paganism-These are followers of an Earth-based religion. Neo-Pagan distinguishes between historical pagans of ancient cultures and those of modern religious movements. However, some find the term offensive to contemporary Pagans because it disconnects them from their ancestors and ancestral heritage. A series of basic laws/rules are followed; multiple gods/goddesses (again the choice of which is up to the individual), holistic concept of an interconnected universe, deity is imminent in nature, universe is imbued with life force energy. Some Pagans believe there are specific spirits that inhabit various features of the natural world and they can actively communicate; animal spirits as spirit guides. All revere the planet as Mother Earth, The Great Mother, or Gaia.

Green Witch-Is a nature-based and earth oriented tradition that draws on Folklore and Folk Magick of ancient cultures. Green Witches practice a traditional form of Witchcraft where the earth, trees, herbs, and flowers are consulted for their medicinal and magickal value/addition. Most Green Witches grow their own herbs, plants, trees, flowers, and commune with nature to use as their herbal remedies. Deities are the choice of the witch and her individual cultural influence. Green Witches also acknowledge The Great Mother, Earth Mother and Gaia and additional deities are connected to the nature spirits; Fairies, Gnomes, Tree Spirits etc…
(kitchenwicca.com)

Now that a base line for these traditions have been laid, with a little better understanding of the differences, we will explore Green Witchcraft further for a better understanding. The number one rule among most traditions is the rule; “If it harm none, do what you will.” Meaning; whatever you choose to do (spell, magick, craft), your intention/energy should be pure (good/loving). An intention/energy directed to harm another (hurt, take something away, or cause distress) for self-gratification is manipulating energies to cause great harm (whether to another or yourself) and will come back to you.

Another rule of thumb is; Three Fold Law; if you’re intention is to harm another then that energy, will come back to you times three. The same applies if you are to send a healing energy (with loving intentions) to another, it will come back to you times three. Since we are all made up of energy, the belief is; we have the power to change not only what happens in our minds with our energy shifts/frequencies we also have the power to change our external reality with the help of natural objects such as; crystals, herbs, trees, etc…

Witchcraft in general is a spiritual journey of the individual within and starts with personal perspective and personal evaluations. You need to fully know yourself; your motivations, your intentions, your character before you even think of using magick. Let this be a warning to you; ego does not play a role in this practice. If you do not know yourself and your intentions then you are asking for trouble.

Practitioners with many years experience urge those who are considering Witchcraft (no matter what tradition) to study this tradition for a few years before you even think about performing any spells or purchasing any books on spells. This practice is not a game and can have some very serious consequences from the wrong intentions. A very high element of respect and trust is needed to make absolutely sure you have the best of intentions when performing any spells. Which leads us back to the first two laws; if it harm none, do what you will and the Three Fold Law. Please keep this in mind if you choose to further study this tradition.

Although solitary practitioners have a little more lee-way then those who are in a coven, it is still understood when you perform an initiation; it is because you fully recognize and agree to all the laws/rules of the tradition and take responsibility for yourself and your work. You respect yourself, respect the god and goddess, you acknowledge your responsibility to yourself and your tradition, and you most importantly respect others of the same tradition, as they would respect you. “In perfect love and perfect trust”; these words you hold dear to your heart because that is the basis of human kind along with gentle understanding and compassion.

In Green Witchcraft as in any tradition you are responsible for grounding and centering yourself so that your energies are pure and not effected by the mundane or negative environments. This is where communing with nature plays a key role. It is in nature, that we are able to see synchronicities, speak with nature, ground and center, regain our energy, ground negative energy, find peace, and ask for objects that will help in our spell-craft.
Most Green Witches grow their own herbs, plants, trees, etc… in belief that the loving energy given, will be reflected when harvesting to use in spell work. There is a more personal connection with the plant as opposed to finding one in nature. It is believed that when harvesting in nature, you are only allowed to take what is necessary for your craft. It is an honest and pure gesture to leave a gift, a symbol, food or whatever you choose to leave for the plant’s sacrifice and a generous “thank you”. Some traditions believe that if you say; “Thank you” it is a sign of disrespect. A fore-thought of a gift (a sacrifice for a sacrifice) is thought to be more courteous then simple muddled words.

To be green is to look at the world in a new perspective. Recycling, re-purposing, and re-using items help keep them out of landfills, in turn helping Mother Earth. Using a more basic approach to cooking (cast iron for example), crafts, divination, living, only having the necessities, making; oils, lotions and shampoos as opposed to buying them, removing yourself from main stream “gotta haves” to the more basic needs, finding peace in growing your own food.

These are all examples of areas in which Green Witches apply their knowledge and understanding. Some call it; “Back to Basics” but I like to refer to it as “a passing down of irreplaceable knowledge”. The whole idea is for the greater good, everyone can benefit from this knowledge that we seemed to have lost with modern day conveniences. What would happen if we had no choice but to go “Back to Basics”? How many people would turn to those with this knowledge? How many people are so dependent on modern day conveniences that they wouldn’t survive a week? Old folk remedies, knowledge, and applications will always be needed no matter what technology we have developed because it is all subject to human and mechanical error.

Irreverence of the definition of these traditions from the Oxford Pocket Dictionary and Thesaurus does not even come close to the heart of the foundation of these paths. To coin the phrase; “non believer” to me, is utterly disheartening from College reference material. If there is one thing about these traditions; it is a belief in a great many things and a set of core beliefs in humanity, understanding, compassion and most importantly love. I hope that this article helps remove doubt and fear as to the misinformation rapidly available to those seeking to understand. It is with hope, that soon the truth of these traditions will be public knowledge and any contention finally and unequivocally eliminated.

Suggested Reading Material;
Green Witchcraft-Folk Magic, Fairy Lore & Herb Craft by Ann Moura (Aoumiel)
Green Witchcraft II-Balancing Light & Shadow by Ann Moura (Aoumiel)
Green Witchcraft III-The Manual by Ann Moura (Aoumiel)
Green Magic-The Sacred Connection to Nature by Ann Moura
Grimoire For The Green Witch-A Complete Book Of Shadows by Ann Moura

Nov 23

Magical and Metaphysical Properties of Topaz

Bethany Schelling

Bethany Schelling

Assistant Director - Div 6 at National Paranormal Society
Hey everyone. My name is Bethany Schelling. I'm a mother of a beautiful 10 year old daughter. I'm a bartender/waitress and studying cosmetology. I love in a small town in Amish country. A far cry from the Philadelphia, I know. I have been interested in the paranormal since I was a kid. I've always asked a ton of questions and never really got answers that made sense. After having a few unexplained experiences myself, I started looking for serious answers. Belief isn't enough for me. I want evidence that can stand for itself. I come from a logical point of view and believe science is going to help answer the questions we have. I want to continue to learn and help anyway I can.
Bethany Schelling

Latest posts by Bethany Schelling (see all)

cr1Topaz: symbol of honesty, healing, foresight, synchronicity, purity and friendship

Topaz is a beautiful gemstone worn by people all over the world. Many wear it simply for it’s beauty, but it is believed to have many other qualities then just cosmetic.

The name Topaz is said to come from the Sanskrit meaning fire. For centuries, Topaz has been worn and kept close to increase intelligence and creativity. This gemstone has often been called, “the stone of love and success in all endeavors”. As early as Ancient Egypt, Topaz was thought to be colored by their Sun God, Ra. Because of this, the gemstone made a very powerful amulet to wear to protect them from harm. The Romans also felt that Jupiter, their Sun God, was responsible for the gemstone as well. Even Ancient Greeks thought Topaz contained powers of strength. It was worn in battles by some because they believed it would make them invisible during severe circumstances. Topaz was also used by many diplomats to help discover secret plans by their enemies and improve them with strategic planning.

Topaz is one of the only gemstones thought to follow the moon phases as far as strength of it’s mystical powers. At times closer to the full moon, the stone is at it’s most powerful. When the moon is barely visible, it has little to no power at all. Perhaps this is another reason why Topaz is so closely associated with the sun and solar energy.
This gorgeous gemstone comes in array of colors. Each having it’s own metaphysical and magical properties:

cr2Blue: for emotional strength and psychic perceptions

Clear: Communications with “the other side” and nature

Yellow: Prosperity

Green: Helps to release vengeful thoughts

Sherry: Knowledge and awareness

Brown: Stimulate confidence
Pink: Honesty and openness

White: Focus

Although Topaz is believed to be very powerful in its healing qualities and magical properties, not everyone is able to benefit fully from them. Those born in the months that Topaz is their birthstone ( November and December), are capable of experiencing their full effect.

Whether this is all just myths and legends, Topaz is a beautiful gemstone with an interesting history. Because my birthday is in November, I have worn and owned this stone for years. Is it responsible for the protection and insight I have received over the years? Who knows but I have to say, it’s an appealing thought.

Jun 23

Spirit Plates

Samuel Sanfratello

Samuel Sanfratello

My name is Samuel Sanfratello (Sam). I am a NY state dual-certified Mathematics and Special Education teacher and a nationally certified Consulting Hypnotist. I am also the proud owner and operator of two companies: Monroe Hypnosis and Rochester Analytics. I am a 2nd generation Spiritualist (American Spiritualism) and a certified Medium with the Plymouth Spiritualist Church (the mother church of modern spiritualism). I am an organizer of the Rochester Paranormal Researchers, founded in 2007 and a lead investigator for the Paranormal Science Institute’s F.R.I.N.G.E team. In my spare time, I give back to my community by doing volunteer work for my church and for my local chamber of commerce. I became interested in the paranormal when I spoke with a spirit in my grandmother’s house in the early 1980s. I enjoy reading publications and scientific articles about the fringe sciences and I enjoy sharing these understandings with others.
Samuel Sanfratello

Latest posts by Samuel Sanfratello (see all)

Spirit Plates Many Americans can trace their Spirit Investigation roots back to the early Spiritualists of the mid to late 1800s. Although reports of Spirits (in Western cultures) date back to Ancient Greece and writings from Pompeii, much of our modern methodology stems from the work of early Spiritualists in America. Some techniques that are still used include asking for knocks/raps/touch and use of devices such as talking boards.

Although many low-tech methods are still in use today, the Spiritualists of the time did use their knowledge of engineering and industrialization to design faster, more machine friendly ways to communicate with the deceased. Many inventors and Spiritualists designed technological solutions to communicate with the dead that enjoyed popularity; however, are no longer in use.

One such device is the “Spirit Dial” or “Dial Plate”. Spiritualists utilized dial plate telegraph technology as the template for a new, mechanical means of connecting to the deceased. “In 1853, a Thompsonville, Connecticut spiritualist, Isaac T. Pease, called his invention, suitably enough, the “Spiritual Telegraph Dial.” Just a dial with letters arranged around the circumference and a message needle to point to them were necessary. There was no need for messy wires or electricity.” (Orlando). The religious backlash to the device and the Spiritualist movement was severe, many accused the early Spiritualists of being Necromancer and Witches (jcs-group); however, many scientifically minded individuals set out to use the tools of science to disprove the movement.

One such individual was Robert Hare, M.D. He was an emeritus professor of chemistry in the University of Pennsylvania and alumnus of both Yale College and Harvard University (Orlando) and author of over 150 scientific papers. In 1855, he wrote a book “Experimental Investigation of the Spirit Manifestations” in which he used Pease’s plates with a pulley system. The pulley system lessened a medium’s ability to consciously control an outcome. He named the modified invention, a “spiritoscope” and began to test the device and mediumship to his satisfaction (Hare).

In Hare’s summary he notes, “It is surprising with what readiness a spirit, even when unused to the apparatus, will, by moving the lever, actuate the index, causing it to point to the letters, words, or figures distributed on the face of the disk, as above mentioned” (Hare, pdf pg 11). While using his spiritoscope, he noted that, “Agreeably to my experience in a multitude of cases, spirits have reported themselves who were wholly unexpected, and when others were expected. When I was expecting my sister in Boston, my brother reported himself. Lately, when expecting her, Cadwalader was spelt out, being the name of an old friend, who forthwith gave me a test, proving his identity. As this spirit had never visited my disk before, I had not the smallest expectation of his coming” (Hare, 33). Hare references a medium named Mrs Gourlay who was able to articulate a response to Hare after he read the Sicilian Mariner’s Hymn and replaced a few of the Latin words. In response to this chant, a reply was given through the spiritoscope, ” Dear Brother :—I answer your prayer by saying I do watch over you, and pray for your welfare. I am grateful for your remembrance, and shall strive to deserve it. O ! brother, our cause is a common one, and we feel the same interest in its promulgation. I am daily striving to disseminate its truths, but can make little progress, having so much ignorance to contend against. I know that the truths of progression, with the help of a good and wise God, will ultimately prevail over all the land ; but when that happy time comes to earth, your freed spirit will rove the endless fields of immortality with those loved friends who have gone a little while before. Then will we revel in delights which, in comparison with earth’s joys, are far more beautiful and sublime. I wish you could look with the eye of prescience, and see that glorious time, when all nations shall become as a band of brothers” (Hare, 55).

Hare was not the only person to have positive experiences with dial plates and similar spirit devices. In England, another dial plate was patented and in France, spiritist Allan Kardec published a book “Le Livre des Mediums”. His book supported Spiritualism and referenced several events that he found to be beyond the explanation of Science and Psychology and mentions his own experiences with dial plates. (Kardec).

Works Cited
Church Leaders Associated Spiritualism With Witchcraft. (n.d.). Retrieved June 18, 2015, from http://www.jcs-group.com/enigma/religion/spiritualism1.html

Hare, R. (1855). Experimental investigation of the spirit manifestations: Demonstrating the existence of spirits and their communion with mortals : Doctrine of the spirit world respecting heaven, hell, morality, and God : Also, the influence of Scripture on the morals of. New York: Partridge & Brittan (available: https://ia601407.us.archive.org/21/items/experimentalinv00hare/experimentalinv00hare_bw.pdf).

Kardec, A. (n.d.). Spiritualist philosophy: The spirits’ book. New York. Available: http://www.spiritismireland.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/the-spirits-book.pdf

Orlando, E. (n.d.). The Museum of Talking Boards: The Dial Plate Talking Boards. Retrieved June 18, 2015, from http://www.museumoftalkingboards.com/dials.html

Apr 10

What is the difference between Voodoo, Hoodoo and Santeria?

Courtesy of:  http://santeriachurch.org/

qAll too often, Santeria is mistakenly confused with other African-derived magical or religious systems. It is very common for people to refer to the practices of Santería Lucumi (Lukumi) as “voodoo” by the media, in television and cinema. Movies and television are notorious for lumping all African Diasporic Traditions into one boat, calling them all voodoo and then mocking them or creating sensationalism that is rooted in cultural misinformation. Tack on to this cross-confusion between Voodoo and Hoodoo and you get a whole other layer of misunderstanding about what Santeria really is. We hope this article will help clarify some confusions, and help set the record straight once and for all.

Santeria and Voodoo are often confused for one another

Both Santeria and Voodoo are religions but they are not the same thing. Let’s begin with an explanation of Voodoo. First, Voodoo is more properly spelled Vodou or Vodoun. There are two main branches to Vodou, Haitian Vodou and Louisiana (or New Orleans) Vodoun.

Haitian Vodou is an African Diasporic Religion that came together from the traditional African religious practices of several tribes, some of whom were rivals forced to survive and depend on one another under the conditions of slavery. These tribes included the Fon, Yoruba, Congo and even elements of the native Taino population that survived in Haiti. These people united their practices in an effort to survive, and created a “regleman” (ritual order) to honor and give each tribe’s spirits their moment of worship. These practices were also influenced through syncretism with French Catholicism. Evidence of this can be seen in the use of Catholic saint images to represent the Lwa (spirits) honored in Vodou. The Lwa (spirits) of Vodou are composed of the Rada Lwa (the vudu and orishas of the Fon and Yoruba people), the Petwo Lwa (the fiery spirits of the Congo, the Taino and modern-Haitian people) and the Gede Lwa (the spirits of the dead). Veves, ornate cornmeal drawings laid out on the ground or on tables, are used to call the Lwa in Vodou, but not in Santeria. Haitian Vodou does have an initiated priesthood, but initiation is not a requirement for participation in the religion and the vast majority of vodouisants are non-initiates. Magical wanga and gris-gris are often used in Haitian Vodou’s magic. Haitian Vodou’s primary liturgical language is Kreyol, the local dialect of Haitian French.

Louisiana Vodoun is markedly different from Haitian Vodou. It is more of an amalgamation of religious and magical practices found in the southern United States. This includes some of the Lwa found in Haitian Vodou, a strong presence of the Catholic Saints, and elements of southern folk magic like gris-gris, wanga and mojo bags. There is not a “regleman” in the same manner as Haitian Vodou and there is more of an emphasis on self-made Vodou Queens like the famous Marie Laveau. Louisiana Vodoun has a strong connection with Spiritualism and shares many magical techniques with Hoodoo (southern folk magic) – but should not be confused with Hoodoo. You will see the use of veves (ornate painted symbols) in Louisiana Vodoun, much as in Haitian Vodou. Louisiana Vodoun’s primary liturgical language is English with a bit of French Creole.

Santeria is a religion that evolved in Cuba. It is rooted in the African religious traditions of the Yoruba people (found in modern-day Nigeria). The followers of Santeria worship the orishas, the demi-gods of the Yoruba people. While there is a veneer of Spanish Catholicism for the outsider, that element quickly drops away once a person has undergone initiation. The primary involvement of Catholic elements in Santeria are found in Espiritismo, a separate religious practice that has been deeply interwoven into Santeria as of the mid-1900’s. Santeria is highly initiatory, secretive and operates under strict religious rules. Participation in the religion is very limited to those who are not initiated and the great majority of participants are initiates. Santeria does NOT use veves or ornate drawn symbols to call the orishas as are done in Vodou (bullseye-style paintings called osun are used in certain rituals but bear no resemblance to veves). Santeria’s primary liturgical language is Lukumí, a late 1800’s dialect of the Yoruban language interspersed with elements of Cuban Spanish.

The religious proceedings and magical workings of these religious traditions may have similarities but they are certainly not the same thing. A person initiated in Santería will not have the religious rights or permission to participate in Vodou ceremonies like a Vodou initiate would. A person initiated in Vodou would not have permission and rights to operate in a Santeria ceremony. Each of these religions is different from one another, and each uses different languages, prayers, songs and rituals from the others. The only commonality between them is the use of animal sacrifice, and the employment of magical spell work as an integral part of their religious practice, but this is common with any religious practice from sub-saharan Africa.

What is Hoodoo? Is it Voodoo?

Often people mistake Hoodoo and Vodou. The differenced between them is simple. Vodou is a religion. Hoodoo is nothing more than Southern Folk Magic. Hoodoo uses the magical techniques of the Congo people of Africa without any of the religion. There is no presence of the nkisi, orishas, or lwa of Africa. In fact, most people who practice Hoodoo are Protestant Christians. You’ll see hoodoo workers also being called rootworkers or conjurers. They make magical charms called mojo bags, or jack balls. They’ll use magical powders, herbal cleansing baths, candles or lamps for spell work. All of this magical work is done while praying Psalms, praying to Jesus and God the Father, and reading from the Bible. While the vast majority of Hoodoo practitioners are Protestant Christians, there are some some Catholic practitioners who will petition Catholic saints. It’s important to note that they are petitioning the Saints themselves, not as a syncretized image for an African deity or spirit. So Hoodoo is not Voodoo.

Stereotypical and Racist Depictions of Santeria and other ATRs

For centuries, the African Traditional Religions (ATRs) have been the victim of racism and colonial stereotypes. This was an institutionalized way of dehumanizing the African people by labeling their religious practices as barbaric or demonic. This changing society’s perception of black people into animals or subhuman, in order to justify the slave trade and the brutal treatment of African people by invading muslim and christian missionaries.

Racist depictions of Santeria and other ATR practices include depicting the religions as satanic. It is common to portray these religions as nothing more than harmful spell casters focusing on zombifying people, using voodoo dolls to harm people, or engaging in cannibalism or pacts with the devil. (It is important to note that the use of dolls in magic comes from European witchcraft traditions.) Satan does not exist in Santeria. Satan is not worshipped in the ATRs. Cannibalism does not exist in Santeria, nor do we shrink heads or any such thing.

Remember when you see depictions like this in movies or television programs, they are racist depictions serving to scare those of European descent by portraying African religions as barbaric. Even the term “black magic” is a racist term. It originates from the labeling of African people as black and the characterization of their religions as purely evil. Therefore “black magic” meant black religious practice was evil. At the Santeria Church of the Orishas we detest the term “black magic” and prefer that people call things what they actually are. When referring to harmful magic call it harmful magic, not “black magic” out of respect for the black people of Africa and their peace-filled beautiful religious practices.

Santeria is Not Evil

Santeria is often mistakenly depicted as an evil religion that worships demons, engages in blood-thirsty rituals and seeks to do evil on others. This is further racist, colonial depiction of the beautiful and complex African religious tradition of Santeria. Santeria’s chief tenet is to always strive to stay in a place of iré (blessings) by following the advice of our egun, orishas and elders. There is a strong ethic of helping others and working cooperatively to lift people out of poverty and sickness toward blessings, health, prosperity and longevity. We pray for “iré omó, iré owó, iré arikú babawa” which means “blessings of children, blessings of prosperity and blessings of long life.” We strive to cultivate a good character, live peaceful lives and respect nature and others around us. There is the use of magic for one’s defense, but in many ways this is no different than praying to God for defense against your enemies or petitioning saints to stop those who seek to harm you. The same thing can be said for other ATRs like Vodou, Candomblé, Arará, etc.

The problem is lack of understanding and lack of knowledge. As long as people accept racist stereotypes and don’t educate themselves about the African Traditional Religions, they will continue to fear Santeria.

Original article here

Mar 30

Spiritual Grounding

Courtesy of:  http://www.healing-crystals-for-you.com/

sg1What Is The Purpose of Doing Grounding?

Spiritual grounding is very important for everyone, but especially critical if you have been doing spiritual development or psychic work.

It is easy to get quite ungrounded, especially the way we live our lives today with little real connection to the earth.

When you are working on your spiritual development, you may allow yourself to open via your higher chakras to the Divine realms.

But once you finish you need to ensure you return to normal so you do not remain ungrounded.

It will happen naturally but it can take some time, so taking action to make it occur more quickly can be helpful. It is sometimes actually necessary to be ungrounded, if you are doing processes that elevate you to the higher realms.

But afterwards it is also necessary to ground yourself, and make a connection to Mother Gaia.

Know How To Make A Connection To Mother Gaia?

Energy grounding as a preventative measure to avoid health problems, is important. Make sure that you regularly ground yourself into the earth star chakra.

If you are ungrounded, it is important to bring your self back to normal. There are a couple of grounding methods that usually work fairly quickly and work well.

An easy way to start the process of spiritual grounding is by burning white sage. If you continue to allow yourself to remain ungrounded, a variety of different problems, may develop.

Do you know the symptoms of being ungrounded? If you are unsure, take a look at this list, to ensure that you know… Are you ungrounded?

Grounding Your Energy When You’re Ungrounded

Most of these are unnecessary and are totally preventable. So what action should we take?

Firstly: Whenever possible, walk barefoot on the earth in a garden or park, or go for a barefoot walk on a beach.

Emotional grounding is important, and walking in the water will aid your emotional body as well. This contact with the earth is a very helpful, to assist you to begin to ground yourself.

As you do this, you release energy from your body, and it is transformed into earth energy when you discharge it into the earth below your feet.

Of course if you are in a cold climate, and it is winter, walking on the earth may not be possible.

Secondly: If you are in the position to be able to sage yourself, begin by smudging yourself. Use either white sage alone or mixed with other fragrant herbs. These are often sold in purpose made smudging sticks.

Thirdly: When you are not able to get outside for any reason, do a grounding meditation.

Relaxing…centering… grounding… very important actions for your overall well-being. Go within, become centered, then follow through with the following visualization in the grounding meditation shown further down the page.

Are YOU Ungrounded?

Often when you are ungrounded continuously, you may not be aware that you are ungrounded, but others around you may notice. If you are doing development of your gifts, especially psychic, spiritual grounding is important to do.

The common symptoms of being ungrounded are as follows:

  • Dizziness, feeling spaced out, light headed or a floaty feeling
  • Forgetting appointments or other important things
  • Misplacing or losing things
  • Feeling generally unwell, totally lacking energy, tired and drained
  • Falling asleep during meditation
  • Continual daydreaming
  • Sensitivity to light and noise
  • Feeling over stimulated and nervy
  • Bumping into things or other general feelings of clumsiness
  • Getting lost while driving, even when you have a GPS, you just can’t seem to go the right way, even when the area is quite familiar to you
  • Having out of body experiences without meaning to and feeling that they are not within your control
  • Unable to carry on a normal conversation, including losing track of what you were saying.

Do you think that you are ungrounded? Do you know how to ground yourself? Do you think you need spiritual grounding?

If any of these grounding questions came back with a ‘yes’, maybe you should think about taking action.

Things you can do includes taking a walk on the earth, smudging yourself, doing a grounding meditation and keeping one of the stones from the list on your body or close by.

Grounding Meditation

A most effective grounding meditation involves a visualization, for spiritual grounding. Sit down in a chair in a relaxed position.

It is best done with bare feet that you place flat on the floor, so that you are can feel as connected to the earth as possible.

As you are sitting there, centered, relaxed and at peace, you need to visualize the following ……….

As you close your eyes, begin by mentally drawing a line from the bottom of your feet down into the earth.

Visualize a spot about twelve inches below the sole of each foot.

Imagine that you can feel any excess energy you may have in your body moving down your legs, and moving out of your body into the earth.

Now I want you to imagine that you are a tree, a beautiful tall, healthy tree.

Feel roots descending from the soles of your feet, as you send them down, deep into the earth.

You go deeper and deeper into the cool moist earth, and as you do you begin to take nourishment from it.

You feel your roots growing stronger and you feel your life-force energy deepening and strengthening.

You feel a surge of love and gratitude from Mother Gaia come up through your roots and into the soles of your feet and up into your body.

This love and gratitude is for the gift of energy you have given to her.

You spread your arms above your head, and visualize that these are your branches. You feel leaves growing on your branches, strong, healthy and vibrant.

Your branches reach high into the sky, enjoying the warmth of the sun on the leaves, or the coolness of the moon.

You reach up to make contact with spirit, and gather the energy from the Divine Source and allow it to energize and nourish you.

You have had your fill so you allow the balance of the vibrations from the higher realms to make its way down your body, and slowly filter down your legs.

As you allow this energy to flow out of the soles of your feet, you give thanks for the gift you have been given.

You feel gratitude to Spirit for the gift you have been given, and you thank Mother Gaia for all she does for you, as you give her this gift of your body’s excess energy, to be transformed into earth energy.

When you are ready you slowly open your eyes. You know that you can come here as often as you like and do a spiritual grounding, and that the earth will enjoy the gift you give her of your excess energy.

Crystals To Aid Spiritual Grounding

You may like to use Black Kyanite first, shown in the image on the right, or you could use Blue Kyanite… before you use any other stones, as it is extremely helpful for grounding.

Kyanite comes in range of colors, and when doing spiritual grounding it is highly recommended, that you use any color of Kyanite stones before you use other stones.

Although Black Kyanite is a wonderful stone and is available, the most common color is the Blue Kyanite.

Blue Kyanite is east to get and it is most helpful for grounding. All colors of Kyanite have the added advantage of aligning your chakras.

For grounding and protection, many of the black gemstones and crystals are highly beneficial. So which of the stones on the list should you use?

Most grounding stones are earth star chakra stones, but you also may find helpful stones among the base or root chakra stones.

Take a look at the stones listed in the chart at the bottom of this page, are some of the best and strongest stones for grounding, and most are easily obtained.

Strongest Grounding Stones

Black Tourmaline is a stone that I highly recommend that you keep on you at all times, for both spiritual grounding and protection.

This is especially important as in addition it also has a strong vibration to aid psychic protection, as well as being one of the strongest grounding stones.

Black Tourmilated Quartz has similar qualities, and the addition of the quartz makes these powerful stones to bring light into your auric field, to aid your lightbody.

If you look at the chart you will see a range of spiritual grounding stones, and many of these have both of these important qualities, an important attribute that will be of great benefit to you.

The strong grounding stones that are also highly protective are beneficial crystals to use, and Black Andradite Garnet is a particularly helpful stone to use as it is also highly protective.

Black Diopside is also a powerful stone to help you make contact with Mother Gaia. By looking at the other aspects of many of these stones, you may discover additional reasons why you might choose to use a particular one.

There are many black crystals that you may utilize, like Black Obsidian, that are powerful stones to use for this purpose.

Boji Stone, Fire Agate, Red Jasper, Moss Agate, Smokey Quartz Crystals, Black Diopside, Shungite and Turquoise are all excellent stones to keep on you to assist with spiritual grounding.

If a picture of a stone attracts you, check out this stones specific aspects outlined in its individual page, you might find out that it also has other helpful qualities to benefit you.

When you hold one of these stones in your hand, for even a minute, you are likely to feel the connection to the earth.

If you are an alchemical healer or natural therapist of any sort, keep at least one grounding crystal on you while you are doing treatments.

Wearing Grounding Stones

One crystal that is highly useful to add to your collection is Charoite. Wearing Charoite is highly conducive to your continuing good health, and is easy to wear while doing healing, or any sort of spiritual development work.

I always found it highly advantageous to wear my lovely purple Charoite Pendant, seen in image on right, as it has a powerful vibration.

It has many powerful spiritual aspects for the higher chakras, and for the earth chakra and the base chakra, as well as for psychic protection.

Spiritual grounding is important whenever you use high crystal energy stones, or do any sort of work using your psychic powers.

Whatever stone you choose to wear, just ensure that you keep one of these stones within your aura, or close by so you can employ them when required.

That way when you become ungrounded you may use them to aid you to return to normal quickly.

This is especially true when you are working on developing psychic abilities or powers.

If you feel at all ungrounded, hold one of them in your hand and make a connection with it. It has the potential to work quickly to help you.

When you are working with high vibration stones in meditation, you may use specific stones to develop these gifts, which often make you very ungrounded.

If you are doing any sort of spiritual work, you will open your higher chakras as you open to the Divine Source.

But once open they need to be closed, so that you are able to function normally in your life.

If you are working on developing these gifts such as psychic knowing, psychic visions or clairvoyant abilities, you can become extremely ungrounded.

If you are doing this type of spiritual work it is best to make sure that you ground yourself often, and quickly.

This will happen naturally, but I personally find that by having some of these specific crystals within my aura, it naturally happens quickly and the spaciness is quickly relieved.

One way is to carry or wear strong grounding stones in your pocket, or worn as jewelry.

Remember if you are working on specific gifts including abilities such as clairsentience or clear feeling or psychic hearing, also known as clairaudience, make sure you ground yourself afterwards.

Spiritual grounding is extremely important, even crucial to prevent health problems and easy to do.

List Of Crystals To Aid Spiritual Grounding

 

 

 

Almandine Garnet Angel Phantom Quartz Apache Tears Ascension Stones
Axinite Bastnasite Black Amethyst Black Andradite Garnet
Black Diopside Black Kyanite Black Moonstone Black Obsidian
Black Onyx Black Spinel Black Tourmaline Blizzard Stone (Gabbro)
Bloodstones Boji Stones Brown Aragonite Brown Hemimorphite
Cassiterite Charoite Cerussite Chiastolite
Cinnabar Covellite Crimson Calcite Crocoite
Cuprite Dalmation Jasper Dravite Brown Tourmaline Elestial Quartz
Fancy Jasper Fire Agate Gaspeite Goethite
Hematite Crystals Iron Pyrite Jet, Larvikite Libyan Desert Glass
Luxurianite Magnetite Moss Agate Marcasite
Nuummite Petalite Prehnite Preseli Bluestone
Prophecy Stone Purpurite Pyrrhotite Red Jasper
Ruby Sardonyx Septaria Shaman Stones
Shamanite Black Calcite Shungite Smokey Quartz Sonara Sunrise
Sphalerite Spurrite (Strombolite) Star Hollandite Quartz Staurolite (Fairy Cross)
Stibnite Sugilite Tibetan Black Quartz Tigers Eye
Tiger Iron (Mugglestone) Tourmalinated Quartz Turquoise Unakite
Vanadinite Vesuvianite (docrase) Zebra Stone Zincite

Zircon Crystals

Source:

http://www.healing-crystals-for-you.com/spiritual-grounding.html

Mar 20

What are the AKASHIC RECORDS?

Courtesy of:  http://www.akashictransformations.net

rr1The Akashic Records are an energetic imprint of every thought, action, emotion, and experience that has ever occurred in time and space. The Akashic Records can also be understood as the imprint of all experiences of all lifetime in all realities. They are an etheric, holographic repository of information for human consciousness for the past, present and potentials for the future. The energy that makes up the Akashic Records is the energy of Love! The knowledge contained in the Akashic Records is imprinted upon a subtle substance called the Akasha, which describes the energy of Love that permeates and creates everything in the Universe.

The Akasha is available everywhere, all the time. Everyone can access information from the Akashic Records at any time, and indeed we do! The flashes of intuition and knowing hunches that occur every day are glimpses into the divine wisdom contained in the Akashic Records. Every being in the Universe contributes to and accesses the Akashic Records. Because we are all created by and connected to the energy of Love, our divine birthright includes having access to the divine wisdom and knowledge contained in the Akashic Records.

The Akashic Records contain all past, present, and future possibilities through the vibrations of compassion and joy. They are like the DNA of the universe. They contain a collection of everything that has occurred in the past, and they hold a complete set of information regarding possibilities for the future. Every individual soul has its own, unique Akashic Record. The souls of groups, events, organizations, and locations also have a unique Akashic Record.

One way to understand the Akashic Records is to envision them as a book that contains the entire history of your soul, as well as every aspect of who you are now and all the potentials for your future. This metaphorical book is so vast that it could never exist physically. Instead, it is recorded energetically in the vibration of the Love that makes up everything in the Universe.

The clear truth contained in the Akashic Records allows us the freedom to choose grace in all things. When we know the truth, we can release any illusions we have created that cause us to believe we are separate from God, Spirit, or Source. The Akashic Records are one of the most powerful tools available on the planet today, to help us remember our Oneness with every being in the Universe, and to find our personal and collective power to create the realities we desire.

What is the history of the Akashic Records?

The concept of the Akashic Records has been referred to in every spiritual tradition on the planet. In the Bible, it is referred to as the Book of Life. The Akashic Records are also referred to as the Cosmic Mind or Universal Mind, as well as the Eye of God and the Word of God. References to the Akashic Records, or the eternal Book of Life, date back to antiquity. References in the Old Testament and beyond give us the sense that there is a collective storehouse of knowledge that is written on the fabric of reality.

The energy that contains the information in the Akashic Records is called Akasha, which is a Sanskrit term meaning “primary substance.” This is the energy that makes up everything in the Universe. It is the energy of love. In Hindu mysticism Akasha is thought to be the primary principle of nature from which the other four natural principles of fire, air, earth, and water, are created. Every vibration that occurs in the Universe through our thoughts, words, and deeds creates an indelible imprint on the Akasha, leaving an energetic recording of every soul and every creation.

The word, Akasha, is derived from two ancient Tibetan or northern Indian words. “Aka” means space, storage place, or repository, and “Sa” means sky, hidden, or secret. A simple translation of “Akasha” is “an unseen space or storage place.” The Akashic Records are, then, a hidden library of records imprinted on the subtle space of the Akasha. The Akashic Records are believed to have existed since the beginning of the time-space continuum of planet Earth.
Who has access to the Akashic Records?

Everyone! Just as we have various kinds of physical libraries, such as law libraries and medical libraries, there are various ethereal libraries in the Akashic Records. Every person, animal, group, organization, event, and location on Earth has a unique Akashic Record. By divine birthright, we have the ability to access our own personal Akashic Records, as well as the Records of any group of which we are a part.

Every being on the planet can access the areas of the Akashic Records of which their soul plays a part. Alternately, no one can access our personal Akashic Records without our express permission. The Akashic Records are protected by spiritual beings who are referred to as the Guides, the Keepers, or the Guardians of the Akashic Records. These Spirit Keepers help us access our Akashic Records, and they hold strong energetic protection for the information contained therein.

How can we access the Akashic Records?

People access the Akashic Records often through intuition, prayer, meditation, and flashes of insight. Many of us experience these glimpses of the Akashic Records on a daily basis. For many people, intentionally opening ourselves to our intuition and inner guidance provides a powerful opening to the information in the Akashic Records.

We can learn to access the Akashic Records more specifically through learning techniques for opening the Akashic Records. These techniques can include the use of meditations, breathing techniques, and a sacred, spoken prayer of opening. While there is no institution that governs this work, there are many teachers who are skilled and reliable to help you.
What information can we get from the Akashic Records?

The Akashic Records contain every thought, emotion, action, and experience that has ever occurred in time and space. Your personal Akashic Records contain every piece of information regarding your soul’s experience. In the Records, you can learn about your relationships, your health, your soul path, and every other conceivable topic regarding you! Because the information in the Akashic Records is held in the energy of love, the answers you receive to questions during an Akashic Reading offer helpfulness and hopefulness as well as profound empowerment through knowing the truth of your situation and the possibilities unfolding in your life.

REFERENCE: http://www.akashictransformations.net/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=64

Mar 18

Dragon’s Blood

by N.P.S. member Nicholas S. Antolick

bl1bl2bl3

“DRAGONS BLOOD” is the dried “sap” from the infamous “Dragons Blood” tree. It has been used sincepre-history in many cultures all over the world.

It is still used today, though “Dragon’s Blood” is VERY hard to find and quite expensive. Most of it is “diluted” due to its expense. Processing it into a wood finish demands extensive refining.

Historically, one finds many medical uses for it. It’s used in special incenses. I feel it’s quite interesting that other cultures have used it “metaphysically.”

bl4

It may be processed into an ink used in creating spells, etc. It is used by many cultures with exorcisms, itself “banishing” negative entities. Others use it to “amplify” positive energies.

I have confirmed that Stradivarius had used it on his instruments. It may be found on other, fine instruments today. Perhaps its use has contributed to the fame Stradivarius maintains with his amazing Cellos, Violas and Violins, some 600 years after they were made?

I show the picture of my hand wet with “Dragon’s Blood.” It’s curiously like real blood. It’s sticky and darkens as it dries. It is seemingly identical to actual blood in how hard it is to clean up. Handling it as such, one comes to understand how mythologies about it may have developed…

bl5

Mar 16

Candle Magic 101: An Introduction to Candle Magic

Courtesy of:  http://paganwiccan.about.com/

cmCandle magic is one of the simplest forms of spell casting. Considered sympathetic magic, it’s a method which doesn’t require a lot of fancy ritual or expensive ceremonial artifacts. In other words, anyone with a candle can cast a spell. After all, remember when you were a child and you made a wish before you blew out the candles on your birthday cake? Same theory, only now instead of just hoping, you’re declaring your intent (and by now you’ve probably stopped hoping for a pony).

If you think about it, the birthday-candle ritual is based on three key magical principles:

  • Decide on a goal
  • Visualize the end result
  • Focus your intent, or will, to manifest that result

What Sort of Candle Should I Use?

Most practitioners of magical systems will tell you that, much like a few other aspects of life, size really isn’t important. In fact, really big candles may be counterproductive — a candle that takes too long to burn down can be highly distracting to someone working a spell that instructs you to wait until the candle burns out on its own. Typically, a short taper candle or a votive candle work the best. In some cases, a spell might call for a specific type of candle, such as a seven-day candle or a figure candle, which may represent a particular person. One of the most popular candles, believe it or not, is in fact the little menorah candles which are sold by the box in the kosher section of the grocery store. They’re about 4″ long, white, unscented, and thin — perfect for spell work.

You should always use a brand new candle for spell work — in other words, virgin materials. Don’t use the candles that you burned at the dinner table or in the bathroom yesterday for spell work. In some magical traditions, once a candle is burned it picks up vibrations from things around it — in other words, a used candle is already tainted by vibrations, and so will lead to a negative or ineffective magical outcome.

When it comes to colors, you may wish to have a variety on hand for different magical purposes. Typically, color correspondences for candle magic are as follows:

  • Red: Courage and health, sexual love and lust
  • Pink: Friendship, sweet love
  • Orange: Attraction and encouragement
  • Gold: Financial gain, business endeavors, solar connections
  • Yellow: Persuasion and protection
  • Green: Financial gain, abundance, fertility
  • Light Blue: Health, patience and understanding
  • Dark Blue: Depression and vulnerability
  • Purple: Ambition and power
  • Brown: Earth-related or animal-related workings
  • Black: Negativity and banishment
  • White: Purity and truth*
  • Silver: Reflection, intuition, lunar connections

* Note that in many Pagan traditions, it is acceptable to use a white candle in place of any other color.

Using Your Candle in Ritual

After you’ve selected a candle, you’ll want to oil it or dress it before burning. This is a method by which you’ll establish a psychic link between you and the candle itself. In other words, you’re charging the candle with your own energy and personal vibrations, and projecting your intent into the wax before you burn it. To dress a candle, you’ll need a natural oil — many practitioners like grapeseed because it has no smell. Another option is to use special candle magic oils from one of the metaphysical supply stores. Begin at the top of the candle, and rub the oil downward to the middle. Then, begin at the base of the candle and rub the oil up towards the middle, ending where the first coating of oil left off. In some traditions, the anointing is done just the opposite way — start in the middle and work your way towards the two ends.

If your working calls for herbs to be used as well, roll the oiled candle in the powdered herbs until it is coated all the way around.

The most basic form of candle magic uses a piece of colored paper that matches the intent of your candle. Decide what your goal is, and write it on the piece of paper — just for an example, let’s say we’re going to do a money working. Write down your intent — something like I will become financially prosperous. In some traditions, you would write your intent in a magical alphabet, such as Theban or Enochian. Because this is a money-oriented working, we would select either a gold or green piece of paper, and a candle of the same color. As you write down your goal, visualize yourself achieving that goal. Think about the different ways in which your goal might manifest — could you be getting a raise at work? Perhaps someone who owed you money will arrive out of the blue to repay their debt.

Once you’ve written down your goal, fold the paper, concentrating on your intent the whole time. Some people like to say a small incantation as they do this — if you’re one of those people, this is a good place to do it. It doesn’t have to be anything fancy. You can use something as simple as:

Extra money come my way,
I could use a little cash today.
Extra money come to me,
As I will, so it shall be.

Place one corned of the folded paper into the candle’s flame and allow it to catch fire. Hold the paper as long as possible (without burning your fingers) and then place it in a fire-safe bowl or cauldron to burn the rest of the way on its own. Allow the candle to burn out completely. When the candle has burned out completely, dispose of it, rather than saving it to use again for another working. Usually there’s not much left of a candle except a stub of wax, and you can either bury it outdoors or dispose of it in whatever manner you choose.

Source:

http://paganwiccan.about.com/od/bookofshadows/a/Candle_Magic.htm

Mar 16

Paths of the Western Occult Tradition

Courtesy of:  http://altreligion.about.com

7564The following is a partial list of paths within the Western Occult Tradition. Many occultists follow practices involving aspects of multiple paths. This makes generalizing about the occult extremely difficult and is the reason I find it more helpful to describe individual occult paths. In addition, not all followers of these paths label themselves occultists, and outsiders should be sensitive to such differences in definition.

Hermeticism
A system of theological and mystical philosophy that developed around the second century in a collection of texts once attributed to Hermes Trismegistus but now understood to be the work of multiple anonymous authors.

Neoplatonism
A system of theological and mystical philosophy founded in the third century by Plotinus, and developed by a number of his contemporaries or near contemporaries. Neoplatonic works are based on the philosophical works of Plato, particularly those relating to his theory of forms and the difference between absolute and perceived reality.

Kabbalah
Jewish mysticism as discussed in a variety of sources, most notably the Zohar. Much of Kabbalah, particularly within Judaism, has to do with the discovery of deeper meanings within Jewish holy texts. New-Jewish forms of Kabbalah are the ones most commonly labeled as occult.

Gnosticism
A broad range of beliefs generally depicting reality as perfect souls created by a perfect god trapped within the material world created by an imperfect or evil spirit. Gnosticism also strongly emphasizes the search for hidden knowledge of humanity’s condition as a means of escaping it, which is why Gnosticism is often categorized as occult.

Alchemy
The study of transmutation on both physical and spiritual levels. Based upon the Hermetic principle “as above, so below,” alchemy holds that by learning of the properties of the physical world they may learn the secrets of the spiritual one as well. The most commonly known goal of alchemy is the transmutation of lead into gold, which is largely a metaphor for transforming something coarse and unrefined into something perfect, rare and whole. It is debated whether alchemists ever tried to actually transform physical lead, or whether it was entirely metaphorical.

Astrology
The determination of influences working on Earth that originate in the more perfect celestial bodies.

Numerology
The manipulation of numbers to reveal additional information and meaning. This can involve both the interpretation of numbers themselves as well as assigning numerical values to letters and/or words.
Thelema
Religion and philosophy based upon the writings of Aleister Crowley concerning the seeking and expression of one’s True Will, or destiny.

Wicca
This neopagan religion has many roots in the beliefs and ceremonies of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, and it stresses esoteric knowledge and personal spiritual experience, particularly in its more traditional forms.

Satanism
Not all Satanic practices can be labeled as occult. Members of the Church of Satan who simply embrace the life-affirming teachings, for example, are not occultists in any sense of the word. However, many Satanists incorporate occult magical practices into their rituals (including Church of Satan founder Anton LaVey), and some forms of Satanism are inherently occult, such as the Temple of Set.

Theosophy
Based on the writings of Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, Theosophy probably bears the most Eastern influences of any path in the Western Occult Tradition. Theosophists seek knowledge of their higher, more spiritual selves, of which our common personality and consciousness are generally unaware.

Divination
A variety of methods of predicting potential outcomes or reading the influences surrounding a person, time or event.

Source:

http://altreligion.about.com/od/alternativereligionsaz/tp/occult_paths.htm

Feb 24

Egyptian Ankh

Courtesy of:  http://www.occulttreasures.com

ank1This is the ancient Egyptian symbolic representation of both physical and eternal life or life after life. The Ankh is known as the original cross. Ankh is given to the deceased to have a blessed after life. This is a highly sacred sign worn by Egyptian to get a long life full of blessings. The ankh may represent the life-giving elements of air and water. It was often shown being offered to the king’s lips as a symbol of the “breath of life.” Anthropomorphic pictures of the ankh sometimes show it holding an ostrich-feather fan behind the pharaoh in a variant form of this idea. Similarly, chains of ankhs were shown poured out of water vessels over the king as a symbol of the regenerating power of water. Libation vessels which held the water used in religious ceremonies were themselves sometimes produced in the shape of the ankh hieroglyph. Found widely in Egyptian art, the ankh has come to symbolize life after death.

In Egyptian art, especially that depicting funeral ceremonies, their gods and goddesses are shown clutching the ankh by its loop as if it were a key. In this manner, it is believed that the ankh would open the gates of death on to immortality. It is also known as the Key of the Nile, representing the union of Isis and Osiris. It is said that this mystic union would initiate the annual flooding of the Nile, providing Egypt with her various means to survive.

The ankh symbol was often carried by Egyptians as an amulet, either alone, or in connection with two other hieroglyphs that mean “strength” and “health. A similar symbol was used to represent the Roman goddess Venus. This symbol, known benignly as Venus’ hand-mirror, is much more associated with a representation of the female womb. In astrology the same symbol is used to represent the planet Venus, in alchemy to represent the element copper, and in biology to identify the female sex. This is also a god health charm.

ank2Another theory holds that the ankh was symbolic of the sunrise, with the loop representing the Sun rising above the horizon, which is represented by the crossbar. The vertical section below the crossbar would then be the path of the sun. The ankh was used in funeral ceremonies as well. When someone died, the dead also carried the ankh at the time their souls were weighed, or when they would board the Boat of the Sun God, as a sign that they sought this same immortality from the gods. It was sometimes held upside down by the loop – especially in funeral rites when it hinted at the shape of a key and in reality was considered the key which opened the gate to the tomb of the Fields of Aalu, the realm of eternity. Therefore, the dead were sometimes referred to as “ankhu”, and a term for a sarcophagus was “neb-ankh”, meaning possessor of life.

Source:
http://www.occulttreasures.com/ankh.html

Feb 23

The legend of the Fairy cross or Fairy stone

Courtesy of:  http://forum2.aimoo.com/ and http://meanings.crystalsandjewelry.com

u1The legend of the Fairy Cross. It is an old Cherokee legend handed down
through almost 2,000 years. Herein contains some of the legend. If you
ask a Cherokee about it, he will show you a tiny cross to prove his
story. The Cherokee had no temples, no shrines, no idols. The Sun and
the Moon and the Stars were the trinity. The lightning and the wind,
the thunder and the rain provoked both reverence and fear. For these
were the only messages of God. Here is the story.

“When the world was young there lived in these mountains a race of little
people. They were spirit people. Like the fairies you read about. One
day when these little people had gathered to dance and sing around a
deep pool deep in the woods, a spirit messenger arrived from a strange
city far away in the Land of the Dawn. Soon the dancing and singing
stopped, for the messenger brought them sad tidings. The messenger told
them Christ was dead. The little people were silent and sad. And as
they listened to the story of how Christ had died on the Cross, they
wept and their tears fell upon the earth and turned into small stones.
The stones were not round or square. Each was in the form of a
beautiful little cross. Hundreds of tears fell to earth and turned into
tiny stone crosses, but the little people were so dazed and heart
broken, they did not notice what was happening. So, with the joy gone
from their hearts, they wandered away into the forest into their homes.
But around the spot where they had been dancing and singing, where
they had stopped to shed their tears, the ground was covered with these
symbols of the death of Christ. What happened to the little people? No
one knows for sure what happened to them. The old men of the tribes
said that after that day, the little people were never seen again. But
they say on still nights you could hear them whispering along the river
and that when there is a gentle breeze their sighs could be heard in
the tall trees.”
u2There is a belief among the Cherokee that the crosses had the power to render the owner invisible
at will. Some say the stones are a reward for goodness and kindesss to
all people. The Nunnehi, were immortals who dwelled in the fastness of
the mountains. They had their townhouses under the Cherokee mounds and
under the hills. They were the spirit people who could make themselves
invisible at will after they had come into possession of the tiny fairy
crosses. In some instances, the tiny crosses were supposed to give the
owner the power of diving into the ground and coming up again among the
enemy to scalp and kill with sudden terror and destruction.

The crosses have found their way into rare collections of gems and
artifacts. In some instances, they have been polished and ground to
beautiful symmetry and mounted in gold and used as good luck emblems.

The crosses are actually made of staurolite. This has been designated the
official state mineral. They form a perfect cross at a certain
temperature. They are usually less than an inch in length

http://forum2.aimoo.com/ChalandorBOS/m/Faery-Magick/the-legend-of-the-Fairy-cross-or-Fairy-stone-1-345087.html

Fairy Stone

Alternate Names & Spellings for Fairy Stone: Calcite Fairy Stone, Harricana

Crystal Meanings of Fairy Stone

Keywords: Healing, Practicality

The name of Fairy Stone is said to come from Native Americans who used them for good luck.

u3These stones embody nurturing energy for the Earth and those upon it. They are children of the Earth Mother and bring to light the concerns for her and her well-being.

Fairy stones have a deep practicality, bringing pragmatic answers to seekers. This can manifest itself as prosperity and other practical benefits for daily life.

Spiritual and Psychic Properties

Fairy stones are used for channeling that is grounded and practical. They are less likely to be helpful for un-grounded energy work.

These stones are excellent for meditation, and meditation on the shape and energies of a particular stone can bring its own specific insights. Fairy stones are also used for protection from evil spirits, psychic protection, and protection during ascension by staying connected to the Earth’s center.

Fairy stones are said to adopt people rather than the other way around. For those they adopt they are said to be “little helpers.”

Mental and Emotional Properties

Fairy stones are used to bring positivity to the mental and emotional life. They are said to heal trauma and its symptoms and to stop fight or flight syndroms. One of its lessons is to respond positively to situations of all kinds, even when it seems difficult at first glance. It is also used to rid one of maladaptive defense mechanisms to go through and past issues into calm emotional well-being. They are also said to calm or dispel anger and other negative feelings.

Physical Conditions Properties Lore

Fairy stones are used in crystal heaing for arthritis pain, dissolve calcifications, sound overall health, lessen inflammation, recovery from radiation or chemotherapy treatments, reduce fever, heal wounds

Please note that healing crystal meanings are spiritual supports to healing and are not prescriptions or healthcare information.

Related Chakras

Fairy stones are related primarily to the root and crown chakras.

Rock Lore & Tidbits:

Fairy stones are concretions of glacial of sand, clay and calcite (calcium carbonate) “cement”. This type of fairy stone, aka Calcite Fairy Stone, is only found in Quebec, Canada. It is not the same as staurolite which is also called fairy stone.

These fairy stones have a natural shape of smooth, flattened discs with one or more discs growing together. These discs range from white to grayi-beige to gray. Usually one side is smooth and the other side having irregular markings from fossil micro-organisms which may resemble ancient heiroglyphs.

http://meanings.crystalsandjewelry.com/fairy-stone/

Feb 23

Feng Shui

Courtesy of:  http://fengshui.about.com/

fengshWhat is feng shui? This is a simple question that can
be difficult to answer. Feng shui is an ancient art and science developed over 3,000 years ago in China. It is a complex body of knowledge that reveals how to balance the energies of any given space to assure health and good fortune for people inhabiting it.

Feng means wind and shui means water. In Chinese culture wind and water are associated with good health, thus “good” feng shui came to mean good fortune, while “bad” feng shui means bad luck, or misfortune.

Feng shui is based on the Taoist vision and understanding of nature, particularly on the idea that the land is alive and filled with Chi, or energy.

The ancient Chinese believed that specific land’s energy could either make or break the kingdom, so to speak. The theories of yin and yang, as well as the five feng shui elements, are some of the basic aspects of a feng shui analysis that come from Taoism.

The main tools used in a feng shui analysis are the Compass and the Bagua. The feng shui energy map, or bagua, is an octagonal grid containing the symbols of the I Ching, the ancient oracle on which feng shui is based. Knowing the bagua of your home will help you understand the connection of specific feng shui areas of your home to specific areas of your life.

The feng shui compass, also called Luo-Pan, is used to access deeper information about a site or a building. It consists of bands of concentric rings arranged around the magnetic needle.  Luo means “everything” and Pan means “bowl”, which can be interpreted as a bowl that contains all the mysteries of the universe.feg4

Feng shui offers a variety of cures to improve your life. From the feng shui use of aquariums to attract prosperity to the feng shui use of crystals and foundains; from the right feng shui use of colors to the feng shui use of clocks, there are many ways you can improve the energy in your home with solid, good feng shui.

It is important to understand that there are several different schools of feng shui, as well as a strong culturally specific symbolic aspect of feng shui that you have to use intelligently.  Once you master the basic level of feng shui, you will start seeing powerful results. You will also understand why feng shui is extensively used in both homes and offices all over the world.

Although some levels of feng shui are easy to understand and apply, the core knowledge takes years of study. Just like the Traditional Chinese medicine, feng shui knowledge is deep and complex. The more you know about feng shui, the more there is to explore!

Source:

http://fengshui.about.com/od/glossaryofterms/ss/What-is-Feng-Shui.htm

Feb 23

What is Chakra?

Latest posts by Sara Owens (see all)

he6I have been doing a lot of research lately on the healing and metaphysical properties of crystals. One word that I come across a lot is Chakra. Now I know most of us who are beginners in crystal lore and other metaphysical areas may have a vague idea of what a Chakra is but I wanted a little bit more in depth knowledge.

Here is the Merriam Webster Definition:
Definition of CHAKRA
Noun chak·ra \ˈchä-krə ˈshä-, ˈchə-\
any of several points of physical or spiritual energy in the human body according to yoga philosophy

 

Origin of CHAKRA
Sanskrit cakra, literally, wheel — more at wheel

I came across several different explanations in my research. Some vary slightly but most agree on the main points. This was the most basic and straight forward explanation that I found.

What is a CHAKRA?
A chakra — the Sanskrit word for “wheel” — represents a focus or concentration of energy in the body. There are seven different chakras, corresponding with seven locations in, on and around the body. Each of these Chakra centers governs a unique emotional and spiritual state.

CHAKRA History
The chakra system was first introduced in the eighth century as a way to understand the subtle body or energy body — as separate from a physical practice or system. Understanding that an energy center in balance is a connection of mind, body and spirit is at the forefront of many healing and faith traditions. While sources vary about the number of chakras, there are seven main chakras that many traditions recognize.
Here is a brief synopsis of the 7 main Chakras.

ROOT CHAKRA

The root chakra, known as the Muladhara in sanskrit, helps you establish a life-nourishing bond with the natural world, while minimizing the de-humanizing elements of the often frantic undergrounded pace of modern life.

Location: Base of spine
Sanskrit Name: Muladhara
Color: Red
# of Petals: 4
Element: Earth
Mantra: Lam
Mind: intuition
Emotion: confidence
Spirit: survival

SACRAL CHAKRA

The sacral chakra, known as the Swadhisthana in sanskrit, helps awaken healthy, natural sensual desire while minimizing reliance on artificial substitutes for pleasure.

Location: abdomen
Sanskrit Name: Swadhisthana
Color: orange
# of Petals: 6
Element: Water
Mantra: Vam
Mind: creativity
Emotion: enthusiasm
Spirit: passion

SOLAR PLEXUS CHAKRA

The solar plexus chakra, known as the Manipura in sanskrit, helps invigorate healthy metabolism, while minimizing the stagnating effects of couch potato syndrome.

Location: midway between navel and base of sternum
Sanskrit Name: Manipura
Color: yellow
# of Petals: 10
Element: Fire
Mantra: Ram
Mind: personal power
Emotion: expansiveness
Spirit: growth

HEART CHAKRA

The heart chakra, known as the Anahata in sanskrit, helps activate your emotional center to foster energy circulation, the expression of love and a sense of empathy, while dispelling callousness and anger.

Location: center of the chest
Sanskrit Name: Anahata
Color: Green
# of Petals: 12
Element: Air
Mantra: Yam
Mind: passion/compassion
Emotion: love of self as well as others
Spirit: devotion

THROAT CHAKRA

The throat chakra, known as the Vishuddha in sanskrit, inspires your communicative nature and fosters expression and a sense of calm clarity, while minimizing self-consciousness and timidity.

Location: throat/base of the neck
Sanskrit Name: Vishuddha
Color: blue
# of Petals: 16
Element: Sound (music)
Mantra: Ham
Mind: confidence
Emotion: independence
Spirit: sense of security

THIRD EYE CHAKRA

The third eye chakra, known as the Ajna in sanskrit, inspires your visionary process and fosters understanding, while minimizing the cloudiness of illusion and confusion.

Location: forehead/between the eyebrows
Sanskrit Name: Ajna
Color: indigo blue
# of Petals: 2
Element: light
Mantra: Om or Sham
Mind: visual consciousness
Emotion: clarity of intuition
Spirit: insight

CROWN CHAKRA

The crown chakra, known as the Sahasrara in sanskrit, will inspire you to liberate your spirit and place it on the path to transcendence, while minimizing the influence of life’s roadblocks. Free yourself to reach your highest potential and state of being.

Location: top of head
Sanskrit Name: Sahasrara
Color: violet/white or full spectrum (rainbow)
# of Petals: 1000+
Element: thought
Mantra: the dissipating silence after Om
Mind: free thought
Emotion: release
Spirit: set free

www.mindbodygreen.com

Feb 23

A Brief History on Fortune Telling

Courtesy of:  http://www.selfgrowth.com

f2When one refers to the practice of fortune telling, it usually means the practice of analyzing character or predicting the future via one of any number of methods for giving readings which are based on the ancient belief that there is no such thing as ‘chance’ but that, on the contrary, all actions are dictated by superior, outside forces and the notion that all the universe has to it an underlying pattern, so that past and present events, regardless how coincidental or irrelevant they may seem, are in fact clues to determining fortunes through unfolding events.

There are many different forms of fortune telling. The most primitive, clumsy, yet enduring medthod is the simple recording of sequences of important events. It is usual for animals of any sort to conclude that if event A tends to lead to event B, that seeing event A will again lead to event B. Ivan Pavlov and his famous dogs demonstrated this well. This leads to the practice of telling the future via omens. Omens may be considered either good or bad depending on their readings, and the same sign may be interpreted differently by different people or different cultures. When the world is seen as an orderly system following a preset sequence, any perceived disturbance or variation is viewed as forecasting an unusual turn, be it for good or bad. Some predictions are mundane and make little immediate sense: if a strip of bacon curls up when frying it means a new lover, if you sit at the corner of a table you’ll never marry; while other seem more logical through a presumption of ‘sympathetic’ events: if your wedding ring breaks it’s an ill-sign for your marriage , if you step on a lizard it means your enemies will be vanquished. Many practitioners of modern magic spells use omens to determine whether their workings have been creating the desired effects and patterns: if a man casts a love spell on a woman named Sue, and afterward encounters an unusual number of women bearing the same name, it’s considered a sign that his spell is working. However, when divining by way of omens, one needs to wait for the unusual event to occur, for it is a purely passive way of telling the future. To instigate answers to the portents of novel situations, other methods were developed.

f1A second type of divination is augury. Done, generally, with much ceremony, it nevertheless involves the reading of omens through natural phenomena but in a more controlled environment. For example, the practice of extispicy requires ritually sacrificing an animal in order to then read and examine its entrails for any remarkable items; while this is observing natural circumstances similar to telling fortunes by omens, the omens are exacerbated by the ceremonial practice. Other items like smoke and wax have been used for this, as well as the famous tea leaf readings.

Again employing the belief that if there is no such thing as random chance, that indeed, all results must be caused by outside powers, the practice of sortilege, or cleromancy, came into play. Many popular forms of fortune telling to this day are based on sortilege – tarot reading, I Ching casting, or even the simple flipping of a coin are part of this practice. The distinctive property of sortilege is that it employs tools, such as a deck of tarot cards — adorned with markings, leaving a finite and predetermined number of possibilities their laying or throwing might portend. The ancient Romans sometimes wrote verses of famous poets on tablets which they used to forecast upcoming events, and this evolved into the practice of bibliomancy in which flipping to random pages of a book, such as the Bible, is used to predict coming tendencies.

The most remarkable thing about fortune telling is how despite centuries of being condemned by churches, rationalists and skeptics, the fact that there is still a demand for the art of the diviner today is obvious at all levels of society.

Source:

http://www.selfgrowth.com/articles/a_short_history_of_fortune_telling.html

Feb 09

Maharishi Mahesh Yogi

Ashley Ann Lewis

Ashley Ann Lewis

Director / Dept Chair Occult at National Paranormal Society
Ashley became interested in the paranormal at a young age, but at that young age she did not have much understanding in it at all. I wasn’t until 2010 that she really became interested. Thanks to a Resolve carpet cleaning can that flew across the room, Ashley among three others who witness what happen that night, they pulled a team together. Ashley is a heavy researcher and though she may find the answer to what she is searching for she’ll search even harder. She’s overly determined and takes her part in the paranormal field very seriously. Between working hard and spending every dime she had she became a found of a paranormal team that is based out of Historic Louisiana and was honored to take on a position as a Representative with The National Paranormal Society. There is still so much she does not understand which drives her to work even harder and to further educate herself on everything.
Ashley Ann Lewis

Latest posts by Ashley Ann Lewis (see all)

Maharishi_Huntsville_Jan_1978A

Maharishi Mahesh Yogi (12 January 1918[1] – 5 February 2008) was born Mahesh Prasad Varma and obtained the honorific Maharishi (meaning “Great Seer”)and Yogi as an adult.He developed the Transcendental Meditation technique and was the leader and guru of a worldwide organization that has been characterized in multiple ways including as a new religious movement and as non-religious.

Maharishi Mahesh Yogi became a disciple and assistant of Swami Brahmananda Saraswati, the Shankaracharya (spiritual leader) of Jyotirmath in the IndianHimalayas. The Maharishi credits Brahmananda Saraswati with inspiring his teachings. In 1955, the Maharishi began to introduce his Transcendental Deep Meditation (later renamed Transcendental Meditation) to India and the world. His first global tour began in 1958. His devotees referred to him as His Holiness, and because he often laughed in TV interviews he was sometimes referred to as the “giggling guru”.

In the late 1960s and early 1970s, the Maharishi achieved fame as the guru to the Beatles, The Beach Boys and other celebrities. In the late 1970s, he started the TM-Sidhi programme that claimed to offer practitioners the ability to levitate and to create world peace.The Maharishi’s Natural Law Party was founded in 1992, and ran campaigns in dozens of countries. He moved to near Vlodrop, the Netherlands, in the same year.[15] In 2000, he created the Global Country of World Peace, a non-profit organization, and appointed its leaders. In 2008, the Maharishi announced his retirement from all administrative activities and went into silence until his death three weeks later.

The Maharishi is reported to have trained more than 40,000 TM teachers, taught the Transcendental Meditation technique to “more than five million people” and founded thousands of teaching centers and hundreds of colleges, universities and schools,while TM websites report tens of thousands learned the TM-Sidhi programme. His initiatives include schools and universities with campuses in several countries including India, Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom and Switzerland.

The Maharishi, his family and close associates created charitable organization and for-profit businesses including health clinics, mail-order health supplements and organic farms. The reported value of the Maharishi’s organization has ranged from the millions to billions of U.S. dollars and in 2008, the organization placed the value of their United States assets at about $300 million.

Birth

The birth name, birth date, and caste of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi are not known with certainty, in part because of the tradition of ascetics and monks to relinquish family connections. Many accounts say he was born Mahesh Prasad Varma (Hindi: महेश प्रसाद वर्मा) into a family living in the Central Provinces of British India.[3][22][23] A different name appears in the Allahabad University list of distinguished alumni, where he is listed as M.C. Srivastava. and an obituary says his name was “Mahesh Srivastava”.

Various accounts give the year of his birth as 1911, 1917 or 1918.Authors Paul Mason and William Jefferson say that he was born 12 January 1917 in Jabalpur, Central Provinces.The place of birth given in his passport is “Pounalulla”, India and his birth date as 12 January 1918.[31] Mahesh’s father is identified as a local tax official in the civil service though some sources say he worked in the department of forestry, and others that he was a schoolteacher. Srivastava is the name of his nephews and cousins. Mahesh came from an upper-caste family, being a member of the Kayastha caste, a high-status caste whose traditional profession is writing.

Early Life

Mahesh studied physics at Allahabad University and earned a degree in 1942. While a few sources say that he worked at Gun Carriage Factory in Jabalpur for some time, most report that in 1941, he became an administrative secretary to the Shankaracharya of Jyotir Math, Swami Brahmananda Saraswati (also known as Guru Dev) and took a new name, Bal Brahmachari Mahesh.Coplin refers to bala brahmachari as both a title and a name, and considers that it “identified him as a fully dedicated student of spiritual knowledge and life-long celibate ascetic”.The Maharishi recalls how it took about two and a half years to attune himself to the thinking of Brahmananda Saraswati and to gain “a very genuine feeling of complete oneness”.

At first Brahmachari Mahesh performed common chores but gained trust and became Guru Dev’s “personal secretary”and “favored pupil”.He was trusted to take care of the bulk of Swami Brahmananda Saraswati’s correspondence without direction, and was also sent out to give public speeches on Vedic (scriptural) themes.[4]:22

Brahmachari Mahesh remained with Swami Brahmananda Saraswati until the latter died in 1953, when he moved to Uttarkashi in Uttarakhand in the Himalayas. Although Brahmachari Mahesh was a close disciple, he could not be the Shankaracharya’s spiritual successor because he was not of the Brahmin caste. The Shankaracharya, at the end of his life, charged him with the responsibility of travelling and teaching meditation to the masses, while he named Swami Shantananda Saraswati as his successor.

Death

Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, concerned about his health, became increasingly secluded in two rooms of his residence. During this period he rarely had “face-to-face” meetings and instead communicated with his followers “almost exclusively by closed-circuit television.”

On 12 January 2008 – his ninetieth birthday – the Maharishi declared: “It has been my pleasure at the feet of Guru Dev (Brahmananda Saraswati), to take the light of Guru Dev and pass it on in my environment. Now today, I am closing my designed duty to Guru Dev. And I can only say, ‘Live long the world in peace, happiness, prosperity, and freedom from suffering.'”

A week before his death, the Maharishi said that he was “stepping down as leader of the TM movement” and “retreating into silence” and that he planned to spend his remaining time studying “the ancient Indian texts”. The Maharishi died peacefully in his sleep of natural causes on 5 February 2008 at his residence in Vlodrop, Netherlands. The cremation and funeral rites were conducted at the Maharishi’s Allahabad ashram in India, overlooking the confluence of the Ganges and Yamuna rivers.

The funeral, with state honours, was carried by Sadhana TV station and was presided over by one of the claimants to the seat of Shankaracharya of the North, Swami Vasudevananda Saraswati Maharaj. Indian officials who attended the funeral included central minister Subodh Kant Sahay; Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) leader Ashok Singhal; and former Uttar Pradesh assembly speaker and state BJP leader Keshri Nath Tripathi, as well as top local officials Also in attendance were thirty-five rajas of the Global Country of World Peace, one-time disciple Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, and David Lynch.A troop of uniformed policemen lowered their arms in salute. The funeral received its status as a state funeral because the Maharishi was a recognised master in the tradition of Advaita Vedanta founded by Shankara.

The Maharishi is survived by a brother and “a number of nephews” One nephew, Girish Chandra Varma, is chairman of the Maharishi Vidya Mandir Schools Group and a “senior functionary of the Transcendental Meditation (TM) movement in India.Other nephews include Prakash Shrivastav,[president of Maharishi Vidya Mandir Schools and Anand Shrivastava,chairman of the Maharishi Group.

In its obituary, BBC News reported that the Maharishi’s master had bequeathed him “the task of keeping the tradition of Transcendental Meditation alive” and that “the Maharishi’s commercial mantras drew criticism from stricter Hindus, but his promises of better health, stress relief and spiritual enlightenment drew devotees from all over the world”.Paul McCartney commented saying that “Whilst I am deeply saddened by his passing, my memories of him will only be joyful ones. He was a great man who worked tirelessly for the people of the world and the cause of unity.”

Taken from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maharishi_Mahesh_Yogi

Feb 01

The Occult Roots of the Wizard of Oz

Courtesy of:  http://www.thetruthseeker.co.uk
10686629_10205541071024235_2947447504759659183_nWith its memorable story and its cast of colorful characters, the Wizard of Oz became quickly an American classic. More than a hundred years after the release of this book, kids everywhere are still enchanted by Oz’s world of wonder. Very however recognize that, under its deceptive simplicity, the story of the Wizard of Oz conceals deep esoteric truths inspired by Theosophy. We’ll look at the Wizard of Oz’s occult meaning and its author’s background.

Although the Wizard of Oz is wildly perceived as an innocent children’s fairy tale, it is almost impossible not to attribute to Dorothy’s quest a symbolic meaning. Like all great stories, the characters and the symbols of the Wizard of Oz can be given a second layer of interpretation, which can vary depending on the reader’s perception. Many analysis appeared throughout the years describing the story as being an “atheist manifesto” while others saw in it as a promotion of populism. It is however by understanding the author’s philosophical background and beliefs that one can truly grasp the story’s true meaning.

L. Frank Baum, the author of the Wizard of Oz was a member of the Theosophical Society, which is an organization based on occult research and the comparative study religions. Baum had a deep understanding of Theosophy and, consciously or not, made of Wizard of Oz an allegory of Theosophic teachings

What is Theosophy

The Theosophical Society is an occult organization, mainly based on the teachings of Helena P. Blavatsky which seeks to extract the common roots of all religions in order to form a universal doctrine.

”But it is perhaps desirable to state unequivocally that the teachings, however fragmentary and incomplete, contained in these volumes, belong neither to the Hindu, the Zoroastrian, the Chaldean, nor the Egyptian religion,.neither to Buddhism, Islam, Judaism nor Christianity exclusively. The Secret Doctrine is the essence of all these. Sprung from it in their origins, the various religious schemes are now made to merge back into their original element, out of which every mystery and dogma has grown, developed, and become materialized.”
-H.P. Blavatsky, The Secret Doctrine

The three declared objects of the original Theosophical Society as established by Blavatsky, Judge and Olcott (its founders) were as follows:

“First — To form a nucleus of the Universal Brotherhood of Humanity, without distinction of race, creed, sex, caste, or color.
Second — To encourage the study of Comparative Religion, Philosophy, and Science.
Third — To investigate the unexplained laws of Nature and the powers latent in man.”
-The Theosophist, vol 75, No 6

The main tenants of Theosophy are thoroughly described in Blavatsky works Isis Unveiled and . At the core of Theosophical teachings are the same tenants found in many other occult schools: the belief of the presence of a “divine spark” within every person which, with the proper discipline and training, can lead to spiritual illumination and a state of virtual godliness.

Another important principle found in Theosophy is reincarnation. It is believed that the human soul, like all other things in the universe, go through seven stages of development.

“Theosophical writings propose that human civilizations, like all other parts of the universe, develop cyclically through seven stages. Blavatsky posited that the whole humanity, and indeed every reincarnating human monad, evolves through a series of seven “Root Races”. Thus in the first age, humans were pure spirit; in the second age, they were sexless beings inhabiting the now lost continent of Hyperborea; in the third age the giant Lemurians were informed by spiritual impulses endowing them with human consciousness and sexual reproduction. Modern humans finally developed on the continent of Atlantis. Since Atlantis was the nadir of the cycle, the present fifth age is a time of reawakening humanity’s psychic gifts. The term psychic here really means the realization of the permeability of consciousness as it had not been known earlier in evolution, although sensed by some more sensitive individuals of our species.”

The ultimate goal is of course our return to the state of divinity from which we’ve emerged. The same tenants (with subtle variations) can be found in other schools such as Rosicrucianism, Freemasonry and other orders teachings the Mysteries.

L Frank Baum, a Notable Theosophist

Before writing the Wizard of Oz (and even contemplating becoming a children’s story author), Baum held many jobs – one being the editor of the Aberdeen Saturday Pioneer. In 1890, Baum wrote a series of articles introducing his readers to Theosophy, including his views on Buddha, Mohammed, Confucius and Christ. At that time, he wasn’t a member of the Theosophical Society but he was already displaying a deep understanding of its philosophy. Here’s an excerpt of his “Editor’s Musings”:

“Amongst various sects so numerous in America today who find their fundamental basis in occultism, the Theosophist stands pre-eminent both in intelligence and point of numbers. Theosophy is not a religion. Its followers are simply “searchers after Truth”. The Theosophists, in fact, are the dissatisfied of the world, the dissenters from all creeds. They owe their origin to the wise men of India, and are numerous, not only in the far famed mystic East, but in England, France, Germany and Russia. They admit the existence of a God – not necessarily of a personal God. To them God is Nature and Nature is God…But despite this, if Christianity is Truth, as our education has taught us to believe, there can be no menace to it in Theosophy.”
-L. Frank Baum, Aberdeen Saturday Pioneer, January 25th 1890

In another of his “Editor’s Musings”, Baum discusses the use of mystic symbolism in fiction, something he accomplished ten years later with the Wizard of Oz:

“There is a strong tendency in modern novelists toward introducing some vein of mysticism or occultism into their writings. Books of this character are eagerly bought and read by the people, both in Europe and America. It shows the innate longing in our natures to unravel the mysterious: to seek some explanation, however fictitious, of the unexplainable in nature and in our daily existence. For, as we advance in education, our desire for knowledge increases, and we are less satisfied to remain in ignorance of that mysterious fountain-head from which emanates all that is sublime and grand and incomprehensible in nature.”

At the end of this article, Baum goes into an all-out plead for more occultism in literature:

“The appetite of our age for occultism demands to be satisfied, and while with the mediocrity of people will result in mere sensationalism, it will lead in many to higher and nobler and bolder thought; and who can tell what mysteries these braver and abler intellects may unravel in future ages?”
-L. Frank Baum, Aberdeen Saturday Pioneer, February 22nd 1890

Two years after writing those articles, L. Frank Baum and his wife Maud Gage joined the Theosophical Society in Chicago. The archives of the Theosophical Society in the Pasadena California has recorded the start of their membership on September 4th, 1892. In 1890, the Wizard of Oz is published. When asked about how Baum got his inspiration for the story, he’re what he replied:

“It was pure inspiration…It came to me right out of the blue. I think that sometimes the Great Author has a message to get across and He has to use the instrument at hand. I happened to be that medium, and I believe the magic key was given me to open the doors to sympathy and understanding, joy, peace and happiness.”
-L. Frank Baum, cited by Hearn 73

The Wizard of Oz is very appreciated within the Theosophical Society. In 1986, The American Theosophist magazine recognized Baum to be a “notable Theosophist” whose thoroughly represented the organization’s philosophy.

“Although readers have not looked at his fairy tales for their Theosophical content, it is significant that Baum became a famous writer of children’s books after he had come into contact with Theosophy. Theosophical ideas permeate his work and provided inspiration for it. Indeed, The Wizard can be regarded as Theosophical allegory, pervaded by Theosophical ideas from beginning to end. The story came to Baum as an inspiration, and he accepted it with a certain awe as a gift from outside, or perhaps from deep within, himself.”
-American Theosophist no 74, 1986

So what is the esoteric meaning of this children’s story, which came to Baum as a “divine inspiration”?

The Occult Meaning of the Wizard of Oz

If you’ve never read or watched The Wizard of Oz or need your memory refreshed, here’s a quick sum-up of the movie:

The film follows 12-year-old farmgirl Dorothy Gale (Judy Garland) who lives on a Kansas farm with her Aunt Em and Uncle Henry, but dreams of a better place “somewhere over the rainbow.” After being struck unconscious during a tornado by a window which has come loose from its frame, Dorothy dreams that she, her dog Toto and the farmhouse are transported to the magical Land of Oz. There, the Good Witch of the North, Glinda (Billie Burke), advises Dorothy to follow the yellow brick road to the Emerald City and meet the Wizard of Oz, who can return her to Kansas. During her journey, she meets a Scarecrow (Ray Bolger), a Tin Man (Jack Haley) and a Cowardly Lion (Bert Lahr), who join her, hoping to receive what they lack themselves (a brain, a heart and courage, respectively). All of this is done while also trying to avoid the Wicked Witch of the West (Margaret Hamilton) and her attempt to get her sister’s ruby slippers from Dorothy, who received them from Glinda.

The said above, the entire story of the Wizard of Oz is an allegorical tale of the soul’s path to illumination – the Yellow Brick Road. In Buddhism (an important part of Theosophical teachings) the same concept is referred to as the “Golden Path”.

The story starts with Dorothy Gale living in Kansas, which symbolizes the material world, the physical plane where each one of us starts our spiritual journey. Dorothy feels an urge to “go over the rainbow”, to reach the ethereal world an follow the path to illumination. She has basically “passed the Nadir” by demonstrating the urge of seeking a higher truth.

Dorothy is then brought to Oz by a giant cyclone spiraling upward, representing the cycles of karma, the cycle of errors and lessons learned. It also represents the theosophical belief of reincarnation, the round of physical births and deaths of a soul until it is fit to become divine. It is also interesting to note that the Yellow Brick Road of Oz begins as an outwardly expanding spiral. In occult symbolism, this spiral represents the evolving self, the soul ascending from matter into the spirit world.

Here’s an explanation of the spiral as an occult symbol:

“Spiral: The path of a point (generally plane) which moves round an axis while continually approaching it or receding from it; also often used for a helix, which is generated by compounding a circular motion with one in a straight line. The spiral form is an apt illustration of the course of evolution, which brings motion round towards the same point, yet without repetition.

The serpent, and the figures 8 and , denoting the ogdoad and infinity, stand for spiral cyclic motion. The course of fohat in space is spiral, and spirit descends into matter in spiral courses. Repeating the process by which a helix is derived form a circle produces a vortex. The complicated spirals of cosmic evolution bring the motion back to the point from which it started at the birth of a great cosmic age.”
-The Encyclopedic Theosophical Glossary

Before undertaking her journey, Dorothy is given the “silver shoes”, who represent the “silver cord” of Mystery Schools (Dorothy was wearing ruby slippers in the movie due to a last minute change by the director, who thought that the color ruby looked better against the Yellow Brick Road). In occult schools, the silver cord is considered to be the link between our material and spiritual selves.

“In Theosophy, one’s physical body and one’s Astral body are connected through a “silver cord”, a mythical link inspired by a passage in the Bible that speaks of a return from a spiritual quest. ‘Or ever the silver cord be loosed, says the book of Ecclesiastes, ‘then shall the dust return to the earth as it was and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it’.

In Frank Baum’s own writing, the silver cord of Astral travel would inspire the silver shoes that bestow special powers upon the one who wears them”
-Evan I. Schwartz, Finding OZ: How L.Frank Baum Discovered the Great American Story

During her journey along the Yellow Brick road, Dorothy encounters Scarecrow, Tin Woodman and Cowardly Lion who are respectively searching for a brain, a heart and courage. Those odd characters embody the qualities needed by the initiates in order to complete their quest for illumination. Baum has probably been inspired by those words from Miss Blavatsky:

“There is no danger that dauntless courage cannot conquer, there is not trial that a spotless purity cannot pass through; there is no difficulty a strong intellect cannot surmount”
– H.P. Blavatsky

After surmounting many obstacles, the party finally reaches Emerald city in order to meet The Wizard.

Surrounded by artifices and special effects, the Wizard comes across as cruel, rude and unwise. The Wizard is in fact a stand-in for the personal God of the Christians and the Jews, the oppressive figure used by conventional religions to keep the masses in spiritual darkness: Jehova or Yahwe. It is later discovered that the Wizard is a humbug, a charlatan, who scared people into worshiping his Wizard. He surely could not help the characters complete their quest. If you read literature of Mystery schools, this point of view towards Christianity is constantly expressed.

After all has been said and done, the brains, the heart and the courage needed to complete Dorothy, Scarecrow, Tinman and Lion’s quests were found within each one of them. Mystery Schools have always taught their students that one must rely one oneself to obtain salvation. Dorothy’s dog, Toto, represents throughout the story Dorothy’s “inside voice”, her intuition. Here’s a description of Toto taken from the Theosophical Society’s website:

“Toto represents the inner, intuitive, instinctual, most animal-like part of us. Throughout the movie, Dorothy has conversations with Toto, or her inner intuitive self. The lesson here is to listen to the Toto within. In this movie, Toto was never wrong. When he barks at the scarecrow, Dorothy tries to ignore him: “Don’t be silly, Toto. Scarecrows don’t talk.” But scarecrows do talk in Oz. Toto also barks at the little man behind the curtain. It is he who realizes the Wizard is a fraud. At the Gale Farm and again at the castle, the Witch tries to put Toto into a basket. What is shadow will try to block or contain the intuitive. In both cases, Toto jumps out of the basket and escapes. Our intuitive voice can be ignored, but not contained.

In the last scene, Toto chases after a cat, causing Dorothy to chase after him and hence miss her balloon ride. This is what leads to Dorothy’s ultimate transformation, to the discovery of her inner powers. The balloon ride is representative of traditional religion, with a skinny-legged wizard promising a trip to the Divine. Toto was right to force Dorothy out of the balloon. Otherwise she might never have found her magic. This is a call for us to listen to our intuitions, our gut feelings, those momentary bits of imagination that appear seemingly out of nowhere.”

As stated above, the fake Wizard invites Dorothy into his balloon to go back to Kansas, her final destination. She however follows Toto (her intuition) out of the balloon, which represents the empty promises of organized religions. This leads to her ultimate revelation and, with the help of the Good Witch of the North (her divine guide), she finally understands: everything she ever wanted could be found “in her own backyard”.

In order to obtain illumination Dorothy had to vanquish the wicked witches of the East and the West – who were forming an evil horizontal axis: the material world. She was wise in listening to the advices of the good witches of the North and South – the vertical axis: the spiritual dimension.

At the end of the story, Dorothy wakes up in Kansas: she has successfully combined her physical and spiritual life. She is now comfortable being herself again and, despite her family not really believing the details of her quest (the ignorant profane), she can finally say “There is no place like home”.

The Wizard of Oz Used in Monarch Mind Control

Almost all documentation relating to the MK Ultra project and Mind Control mention the importance of the Wizard of Oz. In the 1940’s, the story was reportedly chosen by members of the US intelligence community to provide a thematic foundation for their trauma-based mind control program. The movie was edited and given a different meaning in order to use it as a tool to reinforce the programming on the victims. Here are some examples taken from Fritz Springmeier’s Total Mind Control Slave:

* The close relationship between Dorothy and her dog is a very subtle connection between the satanic cults use of animals (familiars). A Monarch slave as a child will be allowed to bond with a pet. The child will want to bond with a pet anyway because people are terrifying by this point. Then the pet is killed to traumatize the child.

* Monarch slaves are taught to “follow the yellow brick road.” No matter what fearful things lie ahead, the Monarch slave must follow the Yellow Brick Road which is set out before them by their master.

* Rainbow–with its seven colors have long had an occult significance of being a great spiritual hypnotic device.

* Dorothy is looking for a place where there is no trouble which is a place “over the rainbow.” To escape pain, alters go over the rainbow. (This is a.k.a. in Alice In Wonderland Programming as “going through the looking glass”).

“Somewhere Over the Rainbow” is probably the most dissociative song ever written and is often used in movies, playing during violent or traumatizing events (see the movie Face-Off). The strange effect produced, where the violence doesn’t seem real anymore, is exactly how dissociation works on mind-control victims. It is also speculated that the scene where Dorothy falls asleep in a poppy field is a reference to the use of heroin victims to relax and manipulated them. What about the snow falling from the sky that wakes up Dorothy from her slumber?…cocaine.

To Conclude

Allegorical stories transmitting spiritual truths have existed since the dawn of man. These simple yet extremely profound stories have been found in all civilizations, whether they be Celtic, Indian, Persian, Aztec, Greek, Egyptian or else. Consciously or not, Frank Baum has created a classical allegory which, in the same vein as Homer’s Odyssey, entertains the masses while containing mystical messages that can be understood by the “awakened”.

Source:

http://www.thetruthseeker.co.uk/?p=11546

Jan 31

Bloodstone Meaning and Properties

Courtesy of:  http://www.bloodstonemeaning.com/

bstoBloodstone is also referred to as heliotrope in Greek which simply means sun turning. Many believed that the sun turns red when this stone is immersed in water. Polished stones were escribed to reflect the sun. Bloodstone comes with dark green color with spots of red almost resembling droplets of blood. It based its name from the stone’s appearance.

Bloodstone is sometimes referred to as Blood Jasper in the market. It is not really jasper, but more of a dark green Chalcedony which includes a mixture of red to brown. It appears to be glassy to waxy with an inconsistent color as the green color is derived from chlorite particles, while the red spots are caused by iron oxide.

Bloodstones are a variety chalcedony, which is crypto crystalline quartz. This simply means that these crystals are too small that it cannot be distinguished from the naked eye. One can determine the crystallinity through the use of an electron microscope. Note that there are two forms of bloodstone – the plasma and heliotrope. Heliotrope is transparent and has red in it. Plasma is deep green, opaque with little or no red in it.

A good quality bloodstone comes with solid dark green color with visible veins of red. This gemstone is a traditional March birthstone along with aquamarine. It comes in many shapes and cuts with the common forms of cabochon, cushion cut, emerald cut, octagonal, oval and round.

Bloodstones used in jewelries are coated with polish that magnifies the gemstone’s beauty. This also means to never apply harsh chemicals like detergents when cleaning bloodstone jewelry as it ruins the surface.

Also, be careful when you buy bloodstones in the market these days. Many retailers now sell fake bloodstones. To distinguish a real bloodstone will need you to rub the stone on porcelain. If blood red scars appear, this is genuine. Otherwise, you are opting for fancy gemstones. Where to find these are in Australia, Brazil, Czech Republic, China, Germany, India, Russia, Scotland, and the United States.

Traditional Beliefs of Bloodstone

Bloodstones were believed to be a magical stone in ancient times. Touching the stone simply stopped hemorrhages. Ancient warriors carried with them bloodstone amulets for reasons to stop the bleeding whenever they had wounds.

In the middle ages, Babylonians used engraved bloodstone in their divination. Together with the ancient Egyptians, they used the stone to defeat magically their enemies. They employed the stone’s abilities by increasing personal strength. This was also believed to make one invisible when they wanted others to focus elsewhere. This is also known as the Mother Goddess stone associated with the Isis, Horus and the Black Madonna images.

It was also believed that bloodstone had special powers for reasons that as it was formed when drops of blood fell and stained jasper at the foot where Jesus was crucified. It was dubbed the “Martyr’s Stone” as it was used in sculptures representing martyrdom and flagellation.

Healing Properties in Bloodstone

Because of its great healing powers, these stones were pulverized and mixed with egg whites and honey. An innovation believed to heal tumors and stop bleeding. The medieval used this stone to remove poison from venomous snake bites. Bloodstone also helps in the forecast through weather magic. Athletes who require added strength also use this as a powerful charm. It clarifies vague thoughts and dispels perplexity providing several benefits.

Bloodstones are also known as stones of courage. It improves physical strength, enhances self-esteem and self-appreciation, and calms anxiousness. It promotes love for family and enhances wealth by improving the business and its legal matters.

The bloodstone also fights evil and prevents jealousy. It boosts your spirit and adds longevity. It eases a broken heart and brings good fortune. Whenever the stone becomes blood red in color, this signals the wearer about any upcoming danger. And up to this day, powdered bloodstone is used as aphrodisiac and traditional medicines in India.

Bloodstone also enhances creativity and intuition. Bloodstone drives away the negative environmental energy, which helps in the overcoming of influences like electromagnetic or geopathic stress. It revitalizes and induces dreaming. It gives you courage and helps you avoid harmful situations. This also promotes idealism and selflessness. . This soothes and revitalizes the mind, enhances decision making, and eliminates confusion. Bloodstone minimizes aggressiveness, impatience and irritability.

Bloodstone provides physical aid in treating anemia, blood disorders and enhancing blood flow. It strengthens the immune system and detoxifies. It eases menstrual and menopausal symptoms. And it strengthens the heart, liver, kidneys, intestines, and bone marrow. It minimizes pus formation, neutralizes toxins in the body, and invigorates the lymphatic system, which leads to the healing of infections and inflammations. However, stone therapy should never replace medical treatments. It is there to enhance a person’s health and well-being.

http://www.bloodstonemeaning.com/

Jan 30

Spiritual Blessings

spiritual-blessings-heaven-gate-subliminalThe spiritual blessings of working in communication with your intuition in the form of God, Goddess, Creator, your own spirit, angels, spiritual guides, etc. are many and varied. They range from simple everyday matters, such as finding your lost keys and parking places where you need them, to miracles of healing, or exceptionally peaceful passing over to the other side. Blessings are often offered in the form of prayer or ritual, depending upon beliefs. It is said that blessings are as beneficial to the giver as the receiver.

Blessings are asked at beginnings and endings, and at many points in between. Indeed, any time we feel a situation or a person needs the benefit of divine providence, we ask for blessing. This is how we normally understand a blessing in our culture. It’s an invocation of the presence and power of the sacred upon a person’s life or upon the function of an object.

The term blessing translated means “to speak well on”. Generally we bless ourselves, as upon entering a church in certain religions; others throughout the day, even strangers and perhaps silently – not just for sneezes! We also offer/request blessings on our meals. Often people go to their spiritual leader for blessings on their marriage, their new home, religious items, etc.

A blessing can be anytime we wish to make a deeper connection with the life (and lives) around us. As much as it is an invocation, it’s also an act of discovering the part of us that moves in harmony on the dance floor of creation. In fact, the art of blessing is not only about the act of blessing but about an attitude towards the world, a way of seeing things that goes beyond our ordinary perceptions.

In the context of NPS, blessings of varying forms are offered prior to an investigation (asking for protection), during (for a potentially “stuck” spirit to cross over), as well as following (asking for peace for the client and protection after interaction with spirit). Clients may wish to have their home and its inhabitants blessed following activity by their pastor or other qualified person. It is important when offering a blessing within a client’s home that their belief system be respected, or permission to use that of the team, if any.

Sources:

http://www.spiritual-how-to.com/spiritualblessings.html
http://Spiritualmetaphysicalcenter.com (site no longer available)
http://www.spiritualityandpractice.com/

Jan 22

Premonitions – No Ordinary Dream

Courtesy of:  http://www.patheos.com/

Seeing-the-Future-3What is a Premonition?

A premonition is a forewarning of something that is going to happen before it does without having any concrete evidence to support it.

Premonitions can come in many different forms; dreams/nightmares, messages from spirits, intuition (that gut feeling) in the waking state and automatic writing. Premonitions are just another piece of the psychic abilities that everybody has, but not everybody may be in tune to using. Men may call it a “gut feeling” and women call it “intuition” – take your pick, it all adds up to a sixth sense.

The phenomenon of premonition is most often associated with anxiety or an uneasy feeling suggesting impending disaster. Premonitions of plane crashes or murders have been documented throughout the years, even throughout The Bible, however it doesn’t have to be all doom and gloom. It can also be casual and innocent. Knowing that it is Aunt Edna on the other end of the phone even before you pick it up or before un-wrapping your birthday gift knowing that it will be a beautiful white angora scarf.

So YOU Are Having Premonitions?

The most common way to receive premonitions is through your dreams. Most people spend an average of one third of their lives asleep so it isn’t uncommon to have at least one premonition in your life. Dreams give us insight and understanding even when our conscious mind doesn’t. Dreams can also hold message to the future.

So you are experiencing them – so now what?

  • The best thing to do if you are encountering premonitions is not to panic
  • Keep a notepad and pen by your bedside
  • When you wake up in the morning, try to stay in your same position and relax
  • In your mind, drift closer to the dream
  • Do not think of the days activities. Stay close to the dream.
  • Start writing.
  • Document every detail, even the tiniest ones such as colors you saw, numbers that popped up and your feelings that you felt during the dream
  • Symbolism plays a huge role in premonitions. Do not take everything literal. Instead keep an open mind.
  • Date stamp each dream/premonition
  • Talk to your friends or family about it

My Premonitions Came True!

If you witnessed a disaster in your dream and it indeed happens, don’t feel guilty as if you could have stopped it. Remember that you cannot save the world. Premonitions may occur the very next day the vision occurred and yet some may not happen for years later. Or they may never happen.

Source:

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/ahappymedium/2012/07/premonitions-no-ordinary-dream/

Jan 20

Descriptive List of Incense and Fragrance including History and How to Use

Courtesy of:  http://www.bodhitree.com/

jhghAloeswood: The unique, spicy, sweet, wood scent found in the base of fine Japanese incense available in pieces and powder.

Amazonian Breuzinho: A sweet, floral fragrance of the Brazilian Amazon.

Amber: This fragrance was used as medicine to treat hysteric and hypochondriac cases. Roman women wore amber amulets to protect against witchcraft.

Dark Amber: A rich, slightly sweeter, warm powdery fragrance – softer to the touch.

Honey Amber: A light, warm, sweet and powdery fragrance.

Arabian Frankincense: A fresh, lemon, citrus scent. It protects the living from evil, disease and spirits of the night. It slows down and deepens the breath which is useful in prayer and meditation, and combats depression, confusion & irritability.

Basilica: An orange citrus smell similar to frankincense. This is an aroma that is similar to that used in church ceremonies.

Benzoin: Energizing, uplifting, stimulating. It is known to ‘melt away’ blockages and drive away evil spirits. It wars and tones the heart, both physically and metaphorically.

Benzoin Gum Powder: It has a sweet, almost musky aroma.

Benzoin Siam: Strong, almost acrid, but similar to sumarta. It blends well with other resins.

Benzoin Sumatra: The sweet, fresh, green floral scent of pine.

Cedarwood: The wonderful aroma of cedarwood. It has long been used to treat respiratory ailments, nervous tension and stress related disorders. It is still often used as an insect and vermin repellent.

The Church Blends: What we call those blends that combine frankincense and myrrh with other resins to produce a particular aroma.

Cathedral Blend: Cedar highlights this blend.

Celtic Blend: Lavender buds add to this blend giving a sharp note to the sweetness.

Christmas Blend: A citrus fresh (frankincense) and herbal strong (myrrh) blend.

Ebony Mishmash: A sweet blend with a hint of orange.

Pontifical: A rich blend of frankincense, myrrh, benzoin siam and lemon citrus notes.

Copal: It purifies and protects and is offered to the souls of deceased during “Day of the Dead” celebrations. It is still used in dentistry.

Aztec Copal: A grassy, licorice-like aroma.

Golden Copal: A rich, earthy, spicy aroma

Manilla Copal: A clean, mild, slight turpentine aroma.

Mayan Copal: Clean, slightly herbal and citrus

White Copal: A fragrance similar to an herbally, sweet myrrh. It is the cleanest and purist of copals.

Desert Sage: A dry, strong, herbal aroma that varies with location, altitude and seasons. Sage is traditionally burned to drive out bad spirits, feelings or influences. The leaves may be used as a natural moth repellent.

Dragon’s Blood: A semi-sweet, mildly spicy, floral aroma available in powder and pieces. It is thought to have aphrodisiac properties and has been used in incantations to bring back loved ones.

Eucalyptus: A grassy, spicy, intense but herbal aroma traditionally used for perfuming linen cupboards. A good insect repellent used in making citronella. It has also been used medicinally to treat respiratory ailments.

Forest Blend: A light, sweet, pine aroma that brings back memories of nights in the woods.

Frankincense & Myrrh: A bit of myrrh is detectable through the pervasive frankincense aroma.

French Lavender: The sweet, strong aroma of lavender, long used throughout the world to treat depression, headaches, hypertension and other stress-related disorders. It is believed that the scent of lavender is important when invoking prayers for beauty and balance.

Gardenia: A soft floral scented with gardenia oil. Gardenia is known as an aphrodisiac and for love.

Gloria Blend: A sweet, dry, candy-like, strong perfume with a hint of frankincense.

Gum Arabic Powder: A sweet, vanilla like aroma used in making scents, beads and adhesives.

Gum Mastic: An earthy, clean, strong herbal aroma, often used in the making of other incenses.

Gum Sandarac: An exotic, clean, fresh lemon aroma. An inexpensive substitute for gum mastic.

Indian Incenses: Diverse as they are, fall into several distinct categories. In our descriptions below, we have prefaced each listing with a word that connotes the basic nature of each incense (Masala, Charcoal, Durbars, Combination, Woodbase & Dhoops).

Masala is the Indian word for a blend of spices and/or herbs, such as those used in making curies or other food dishes. Masala incenses are made by blending a number of solid ingredients into a paste and then rolling that paste onto a bamboo core stick. They usually do not contain liquid perfumes which can evaporate.

Charcoal is integral in the manufacturing of a blank (non-perfumed) stick which is then dippd into a mixture of perfumes and essential oils. Charcoal blanks usually contain sandalwood powder, a resin and possibly other substances. Most “charcoal” incenses are black or near black in color, and are distinctive because they are rich in fine liquid perfumes.

Durbars (and Champas) are wet-process incenses which frequently contain ingredients entirely unfamiliar in the West. They are usually very slow burning and quite sweet and spicy in bouquet. They can amalgamate solid and liquid perfumes in a gummy base which never quite dries out, making the sticks themselves soft to the touch. All are highly fragranced.

Combination incenses are those which we have found to have the qualities of both the Masala and Charcoal types. It is possible to make a masala incense and then dip it into liquid perfumes, producing a very colorful and rich bouquet. These incenses usually have a great deal of depth and leave a lingering after-fragrance once burned.

Woodbase incenses, including many Ambers, contain little more than powdered or shaved wood plus a resinous or solid perfume. They are really masalas but since the woodiness is so distinct in most cases, we have put them into a separate category.

Dhoops are masala incenses in thick, long-burning form, or in bulk as powders or mixtures of various substances. A dhoop makes lots of smoke if burned quickly, or lasts and lasts if burned slowly. The most well-known, Chandan Dhoop, is pure sandalwood made into a little log.

Lemongrass: A citrus grass fragrance long used in India as a sedative, medicine for infectious disease, insecticide and food flavoring.

Magic Temple: A spicy, sweet, exotic aroma with a hint of cinnamon.

Myrrh, Ethiopian: An earthy, woody, mildly sweet resin. It produces a high spiritual vibration conducive for prayer and meditation. It was also used in embalming and medicine.

Patchouli Herb: The plant used to produce the oil that smells very herbal with a sweet note while being burned. Patchouli has been used as an aphrodisiac, a mental stimulant and a rejuvenator.

Peppermint, Egyptian: A sweet mint combines with a smoking aroma

Pińon: A sweet, clean, forest essence of the classic pińon tree. A staple of southwestern Native Americans, it was burned for its aromatic fragrances and has protective powers.

Queen of Heaven: A sweet lotus floral aroma. Lotus is associated with health, blessing, abundance and good fortune.

Red Sandalwood: A sweet, woody smell, unlike sandalwood but reminiscent of the Redwood forest.

Red Willow Bark: Long used by Native Americans in purifying ceremonies. It gives off a sweet woodsy aroma.

Rose: Long associated with love, rose can be useful in relieving anger, grief, or jealousy.

Damascus Rose: A fresh, sweet rose scent.

Moroccan Rose Buds: Actual rosebuds that smell wonderful just as they are.

Rosemary: A wonderful, clean, purifying herbal aroma.

Sandalwood: The sweet, buttery, wonderful scent of sandalwood oil, available in both powder and chips. It is spiritually uplifting and is considered sacred. It combats depression, insomnia and stress-related complaints and is used to recollect past lifetimes.

Senegal Blend: An exotic, spicy, sweet, herbal aroma from Africa. It as a scent similar to Thiouraye, an oil known for its aphrodisiac qualities.

Sweetgrass: A unique, grassy, green, fresh aroma from the marshes of the northern Rockies. It is often used to begin ceremonies since it attracts positive energies. It is used to clear objects, places and people.

White Sage: A clean, dry, strong, herbal fragrance of the high desert. The leaves may be burned to clear a space of negative influences and promote calmness. The leaves may be brewed into a tea and may be chewed as a natural breath freshener.

Yerba Santa Leaf: A cleansing aroma that is reminiscent of campfires in Autumn. I was known as the “Holy Herb” to native Californians and used to treat asthma, allergies and cold symptoms.

History and How to Use Incense

The use of incense can be traced back to the earliest written records of almost every culture in the world. The words “incense” which means “to burn,” and “perfume” which means “through the smoke,” are interchanageable. The ancients believed that a soul dwelled in every object and that the souls of essences of objects could be released through burning. The ceremonial use of incense is still practiced by many cultures today much the same way as their ancestors.

Incense is available in sticks and in various resins, pieces and powders. The incenses from India are characterized by highly scented aromas. The incense sticks often have a core of wood (often a bamboo stick) coated with the incense flavor but also are made using a charcoal base or soft rolled without a stick. Incense sticks from Japan have a soft, refined aroma suitable for small rooms and enclosed spaces. The Japanese incense is usually formed without a wood or stick core. Tibetan stick incense is similar in making to Japanese incense being formed without a wood or stick core but much thicker. Tibetan incense has a complex, deep and earthy aroma.

A large variety of stick incense holders are available, from thimble size with one hole for one stick, to larger holders with multiple holes. Many people prefer to use a burner bowl lined with sand or gravel.

Resins, pieces and powders are burnt by using a burner bowl or censer along with a source of heat. Many people use self-starting charcoal but a heated pan may be also used. The trick to using this type of incense is discovering the right amount of heat for the botanical or blend of botanicals to achieve the incense effect. Overheating the material will create the undesirable effect of scorching it, or worse, setting it on fire.

Whatever burner bowl or censor is used, it is recommended that the inside of the burner be insulated with stones, ceramic pieces or sand. In addition, all burners should also be insulated from the outside by placing it on a burn-proof surface. Use any safety precautions that are normally considered when fire and hear are involved.

The most common and recommended charcoal for incense use is self igniting. Igniter is mixed into the tablet before it is formed. The tablets are easily lit by holding the edge with a forceps over a match or lighter for a moment. Upon ignition, immediately place it in your burner. The tablet will then light across the surface. When the charcoal is glowing red and covered with a fine white ash, it will be ready for use (between 5 and 10 minutes). The charcoal will stay hot enough to burn incense for up to an hour.

The particles of raw incense may be placed directly on the hot charcoal. If one wants to burn more than one type of raw incense or change incense frequently, it is best to use aluminum foil between the charcoal and the material to be incensed. Otherwise the melted resin penetrates the hot charcoal and the burner bowl and mixes with the next kind of incense.

To use aluminum foil, form a cup approximately the same size as the charcoal, leaving a quarter inch lip. Either more or different incense can be added to the charcoal in a new cup. As a precautionary note, be aware that the incense in the aluminum foil cup becomes very hot, can be in a liquid state and might burn the skin if it comes in contact with it. Also, only use the aluminum foil cup on a non-flammable surface.

Raw incense comes in the following forms:

  1. Resin comes in three principal categories:
    Oleo resins are sticky, semisolids that contain essential oils. They include balsam, dragon’s blood and turpentine.
    Hard resigns are hard, brittle, odorless (until burned) and tasteless and are obtained either as fossil or as distillation products of the oleoresins. They include amber, copals and mastic.
    Gum resins contain gums or tree saps and include frankincense, myrrh and benzoin.
  2. Woods are pieces of the actual plant or tree. They are graded if any oil has been extracted from them. Some woods are also ground to a fine powder. They include sandalwood, aloeswood, red sandalwood and cedarwood.
  3. Grasses, leaves and flowers are pieces of a plant, the whole plant or the flower of a plant. They include white and desert sage, sweetgrass, eucalyptus, lavender, lemongrass and patchouli herb.

http://www.bodhitree.com/booklists/incense-fragrance-history-how-to-use.html

Jan 01

Spiritual Protection

Lisa Shaner-Hilty

Lisa Shaner-Hilty

I am a supervisor for several programs assisting individuals with intellectual and mental challenges. I have 2 Masters Degrees from Penn State in Communication Disorders and Psychology. My first experiences with the paranormal were around age 5. I’ve been fascinated ever since. I have been an investigator for over 10 years (first 5 years with a team, then leaving to form my own more than 5 years ago, and have taught classes on investigation, evidence analysis (especially EVP) and debunking at local community college. I also have abilities, some of which began at age 5 and others around puberty. Therefore my fields of major interest are investigation and psychic and empath. While I am open to considering all aspect and viewpoints, I am dedicated to seeking natural explanations first before anything is considered evidence.
Lisa Shaner-Hilty

Latest posts by Lisa Shaner-Hilty (see all)

spiritual photoAn old saying tells us that where there is good, there is bad. Where there is light, there is darkness. Where there are angels, there are demons. Paranormal phenomenon are no exception. When investigating buildings, homes, outdoor sites we cannot be sure which we might encounter, so we must prepare for the worst and hope for the best. While most often activity is positive or neutral, there is always the possibility of encountering a negative spirit, or on rare occasions a demon. Many teams and individual researchers choose from an array of methods to protect themselves before, and sometimes during and after an investigation. This article will address many of these methods.

Prayers
In order to ward off negative or demonic entities, protection prayers are recited. These prayers are not necessarily considered to remove demons that are already present. Instead, they are meant to prevent demonic entities from entering, or otherwise influencing a person, home, property, or object. The type of prayer is a decision of the investigator or team, based on their belief system.

Paranormal investigators and professional exorcists often use the repetitive recitation of protection prayers as a chant to shield themselves from harm or fear whenever engaging malevolent spirits or demons. Since demons cannot really be destroyed, but only banished from a person or place, these prayers also prevent demons from “jumping.” Jumping is to shift from one individual/space to a new one. Demons have been known to do this in order to temporarily fool exorcists into believing they have successfully cast them out, when in fact the targeted demons have only moved to a new space. In extreme cases, when serious mistakes are made by an exorcist, demons have even been known to attempt jumping from the possessed person or space to the body of the acting exorcist. Reciting prayers of protection can offer a protective shield against the demon being engaged. *Please do not attempt to exorcise a demon without the proper training (demonology and exorcisms). Thankfully demons are a rare encounter; however, you may do more harm than good, both for your client and yourself. Know and respect your limitations when such cases arise.*

Commonly used prayers of protection: The Circle of Light
The “Circle of Light” prayer is an effective nondenominational protection prayer. Sometimes, this prayer is recited after lighting a blessed or unblessed candle. Before reciting the prayer, first envision being completely surrounded by a strong circle of protective light.

The light of God surrounds us (me).
The love of God enfolds us (me).
The power of God protects us (me).
The presence of God watches over us (me).
Wherever we are (I am), God is.
And all is well.

The Prayer to the Archangel Michael
One of the most powerful prayers of protection against demonic forces is the “Prayer to St. Michael the Archangel” There are several known alternate versions of this prayer. Those who regularly deal with demons and malevolent spirits usually memorize the shortest version and believe they gain strength when a group recites the prayer in unison. This short version is as follows:

Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle.
Be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil.
May God rebuke him, we humbly pray
And do thou, Oh Prince of the Heavenly Host, by God’s power, thrust into hell Satan and all evil spirits
Who wander the world seeking the ruin of souls. Amen

The Twenty-Third Psalm
The Twenty-Third Psalm, from the Old Testament Book of Psalms, can be recited for a variety of purposes. Therefore, some consider it a multi-purpose prayer. As a prayer for those in mourning, it is often recited at funerals of both the Judaic and Christian faiths. It also gives courage to the fearful and hope to those who suffer from despair. Additionally, it is considered a prayer of protection against evil or demonic forces.

The Lord is my shepherd: I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul. He leads me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake, and though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil for thou art with me. Thy rod and thy staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of mine enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and mercy will follow me all of the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

(Source: How to Protect Yourself From Demonic Spirits – Nathan Brown)

Amulets
An amulet is an object whose most important characteristic is the power ascribed to it to protect its owner from danger or harm. Amulets differ from talismans, as a talisman is believed to bring luck or some other benefit, though it can offer protection as well. Amulets are likewise often confused with pendants; charms that hang from necklaces. While any pendant may indeed be an amulet, so may any other charm which serves to protect from danger. Amulets have been used throughout the ages and across cultures and religious denominations. Potential amulets include gems, especially engraved gems, statues, coins, drawings, pendants, rings, plants, and animals; even words in the form of a magical spell or incantation to repel evil or bad luck. Amulets may be worn or carried for protection. If danger is perceived, the bearer may choose to clutch it in their hand to feel closer to the amulet and its perceived power.

(Source: Wikipedia)

Pendants
Spiritual Protection is something that everyone should know how to do, regardless of our religious beliefs (or lack of). It encompasses far more than just ghosts & spirits too. Negativity in any form can be damaging to the human energy field (aura). Fear, anger, depression, negative people/places, arguments and more actually create negative energy that can cling to you or build up in your home and cause problems over time. Spiritual cleansings are very important, for yourself and your home. Many recommend they be done at least every few months, more if feeling stressed or fatigued.

A pendant is anything hanging down from the neck, usually suspended from a chain. As stated above, an amulet may be in the form of a pendant, as may medallions, crystals, etc. Similar to amulets, pendants are worn for spiritual protection. The wearer may also clutch their pendant when feeling the need for more security from harm or spiritual danger.

(Source: Wings for the Spirit)

Medallions
A medallion is simply a pendant in the shape of a medal worn around the neck, for our purposes for protection from negative or evil forces. Medallions often have images of saints or other spiritual symbols which vary by religious or spiritual belief of the wearer. In the Catholic faith, religious medals were in common use for centuries. This use has waned somewhat in present times. The Archangel Michael and St. Benedict are the two most recognized protection medallion.

Saint Michael the Archangel is the patron of the dying and soldiers, to name just a few. He was the leader of God’s army during the uprising of Lucifer and is honored in not only Christianity but also Judaism and Islam. Saint Michael the Archangel is considered to be the guardian and protector of the Church. The medallion depicting Michael is often used for protection by investigators. Some medallions have the prayer etched on them in addition to the depiction of the Archangel slaying the beast.

Perhaps lesser known to the general public, but quite renown among those seeking protection from evil is that of Saint Benedict. Many believe the Medals of St. Benedict, or “devil chasing medals”, are the most potent objects in the barring of malevolent or demonic entities. St. Benedict was the founder of the Benedictine monastic order, and many stories involving the barring or thwarting of evil or demonic forces are credited to him. This medal is used in exorcisms, approved by Pope Benedict XIV in the 18th century.

According to the story, when a servant of evil offered St. Benedict a poisoned goblet, the man of God made the sign of the cross, and the goblet immediately shattered. A loaf of poisoned bread that the man had also offered to Benedict was then set upon by a raven that flew away with it, thwarting the man’s plan to kill the monk.

(Source: How to Protect Yourself From Demonic Spirits – Nathan Brown)

Crystals
Crystals and stones are believed by many to give their metaphysical energies to protect. From amber which was used extensively for protection by the ancient Romans to golden amulets of the ancient Egyptians to modern good luck charms, many protection magic items have been made of crystals and stones of a vast variety, far too numerous to name in this article, each with a specific purpose.

Certain crystals and stones carry protective properties. Here is a short list of the most common ones: fire agate, amber, amethyst, fluorite black onyx, citrine, coral, emerald, garnet, obsidian (apache tears), ruby, tourmaline. You can charge your gemstones in the sunlight, and either carry them with you, place them around your home, or purchase jewelry that contains stones with the properties you want, and wear them. A detailed listing of crystals and their intended use may be found on crystalearth.com.

Crystals are believed to protect not only attacks on the body and spirit from negative entities, but also to ward off negative energy. They protect the psychic energy, and the aura of psychics from attack when in the psychic and spirit realms. They provide balance, healing, and energy. This article is a general description of use of crystal for protection. There are other more detailed articles on crystology available on the NPS website.

(Sources: Wings for the Spirit, meanings.crystalsandjewelry.com, crystalearth.com)

Spells
In many magical traditions, workings can be done to ensure protection of home, property, and people. There are a number of simple ways you can do protection workings. Witches, as well as practitioners of Wicca, Black Magic, White Magic, Hoodoo and pagan traditions use spells to ward off evil spirits, harm from enemies, etc. Wicca and Hoodoo protection spells are detailed here, to represent one more commonly known and one lesser known practice. Protection spells for the others listed above are easily found by internet search.

In Wicca, There are many basic techniques of protection that require no rituals or incantations. These things are easy and effective: Salt – A circle of salt around an area prevents negative entities and demons from crossing into it. You can make a line of salt along a door or windowsill to make it impassable. Iron – Iron symbolizes the pure will, and repels evil. This is why Wiccans sometimes put an iron object in the entrance of their homes to deter unwanted visitors. Three iron nails driven into the frame of a door or window (one at each bottom corner and one in the top middle) block malevolent spirits from passing. Silver – This symbolizes the Moon and the Goddess, making silver jewelry easy to enchant to make talismans of protection. A silver pentacle is a powerful protection even without a spell. The Pentacle – the five-pointed star symbolizing the five elements can be traced almost anywhere as a powerful symbol of protection. Light – Many lesser demons avoid bright places and attack only when it is dark. This unfortunately has no use against the demons of higher rank. Fire – Some evil spirits fear fire, especially those spirits related to water or ice. In some cases, a single candle can be a protection. Crystals – Four quartz crystals previously blessed by a witch can create a circle of protection very quickly. Simply arrange them in a circle on the ground to create a circle that most spirits would find it hard to cross. This circle can protect you, or instead it can be used to trap a spirit in the middle. The circle is much stronger if the crystals are placed by the cardinal points.

Gemstones – stones and gems have qualities useful in magic, and many are effective for protection. Tiger’s eye reflects negative energies to their source; Amethyst blocks manipulative spells and decreases the effect of harmful potions, magnetite can be used to entrap lesser demons, while opal can temporarily lock even higher demons, onyx and obsidian capture and cancel various negative energies including those used in necromancy. The mineral most often used by sorcerers is clear quartz, but it must be blessed or enchanted for it to be effective as protection. Two apples and a knife – This is another very simple method to create a circle of protection. An apple cut in half crosswise presents five areas containing its seeds as a natural pentacle! Deposited on the ground by the cardinal points, two half apples create a circle of temporary protection, which disappears when the apples are completely oxidized and have changed color. Incense – Some types of incense can make the air unbearable for bad spirits. If you have a good quality incense, you can keep many of them away. The most common protective incense types are sandalwood, patchouli, myrrh, frankincense and sage. Plants – Several herbs, spices and other plants used in Wicca have protective qualities. Garlic repels creatures that drain their victims (thus everything that has a vampiric nature); saffron and thyme deter flying spirits that are associated with wind; rosemary repels evil spirits associated with water; Sage, when burnt, is very cleansing and intolerable to evil spirits. Henbane and aconite violently repel demons, but they are very toxic plants so be careful when handling them! Lilacs planted near a home will deter wandering spirits who come by chance (but they won’t stop those who come with a clear goal in mind). Branches of a thorny plant (such as a rose) placed along a door or windowsill will form a barrier as effective as a line of salt. Finally, myrrh strengthens almost all spells and protective talismans. The Athame – Although many Wiccans do not sharpen their athame and never use it to cut anything, this knife is nevertheless a weapon, in addition to being a phallic symbol and thus a symbol of God . An athame which has been properly blessed can draw a circle of protection very quickly – point it in the air and draw the boundaries of the circle. In addition, unlike any other blade, an athame can hurt spirits and demons even though they have no physical body. Broom – This is a symbol for cleansing, and a broom placed by the door will prevent weaker spirits from entering. If a particularly dangerous spirit enters the house, the broom will tend to fall to the ground as an alarm signal.

Clients seek out Hoodoo rootworkers to cast Protection From Enemies, Warding Off Evil, and Safe Travel spells for a number of different reasons, so under the general category of protection and safety spells, conjure doctors and rootworkers group together many types of magical works undertaken on behalf of clients who are seeking spiritual defense and physical security for themselves or their loved ones, including family members, children, and pets. Spiritual protection and physical protection may be combined in one job, but rootwork that aims at providing physical protection is not a substitute for following safety guidelines or seeking help from law enforcement when necessary. When evil is warded off, it is not being broken, negated or returned back on the sender; it is simply diverted or rebuffed. Warding off evil is the spiritually cleanest way of protecting oneself. This is an important point for clients to consider if they do not wish to harm the person or entity who is bothering them, but only to stop the damage from continuing or from escalating. Wards against evil quite often take the form of physical items, including apotropaic talismans, amulets, and seals which may be placed at a location or worn on the person. The mogen David, also called the shield or star of David, is one such talisman; the mezuzah or guardian of the doorposts is another. From feng shui mirrors and foo dogs to Guardian Angel prints and hanging braids of garlic, there are many such wards available to the client, no matter what their cultural traditions. Your root doctor can prescribe such a talismanic ward for you, your dwelling, or your place of business, and dress or prepare it for your particular use.

Sources:

http://paganwiccan.about.com/

http://readersandrootworkers.org/

http://wiccanspells.info/

http://www.wingsforthespirit.com/

http://meanings.crystalsandjewelry.com/

http://crystalearthllc.com/

http://www.idiotsguides.com/religion-and-spirituality/supernatural/how-to-protect-yourself-against-demonic-spirits/

https://en.wikipedia.org

Oct 01

The Book of the Sacred Magic of Abramelin the Mage

Courtesy of:  https://en.wikipedia.org/

abramelin-the- mageThe Book of Abramelin tells the story of an Egyptian mage named Abramelin, or Abra-Melin, who taught a system of magic to Abraham of Worms, a German Jew presumed to have lived from c.1362–c.1458. The system of magic from this book regained popularity in the 19th and 20th centuries due to the efforts of Samuel Liddell MacGregor Mathers’ translation, The Book of the Sacred Magic of Abramelin the Mage, its import within the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, and later within the mystical system of Thelema (created in 1904 by Aleister Crowley).

Mathers used the least-reliable manuscript copy as the basis for his translation, and it contains many errors and omissions. The later English translation by Georg Dehn and Steven Guth, based on the earliest and most complete sources, is more scholarly and comprehensive. Dehn attributed authorship of The Book of Abramelin to Rabbi Yaakov Moelin (Hebrew יעקב בן משה מולין; ca. 1365–1427), a German Jewish Talmudist. This identification has since been disputed.

Structure

The grimoire is framed as a sort of epistolary novel or autobiography in which Abraham of Worms describes his journey from Germany to Egypt and reveals Abramelin’s magical and Kabbalistic secrets to his son Lamech. Internally the text dates itself to the year 1458. (One might reconsider the date of the text, considering that the book Nicolas Flamel brought to Spain was also recognised as being part of the original book of Abraham the Mage, but dates back to 1378, which is nearly 80 years earlier.)

The Book of Abramelin tells the story of an Egyptian mage named Abramelin, or Abra-Melin, who taught a system of magic to Abraham of Worms.

The story involves Abraham of Worms passing his magical and Kabbalistic secrets on to his son, and tells how he acquired his knowledge. Abraham recounts how he found Abramelin the Mage living in the desert outside an Egyptian town, Arachi or Araki, which borders the Nile. Abramelin’s home sat atop a small hill surrounded by trees. He was an Egyptian mage and taught a powerful form of Kabbalistic magic to Abraham. He was a “venerable aged man”, and very courteous and kind. He discussed nothing but “the Fear of God”, leading a well-regulated life, and the evils of the “acquisition of riches and goods.”

Abramelin extracted a promise from Abraham that he would give up his “false dogmas” and live “in the Way and Law of the Lord.” He then gave Abraham two manuscript books to copy for himself, asking for ten gold florins, which he took with the intention of distributing to seventy-two poor persons in Arachi. Upon his return fifteen days later, after having disposed of the payment money, Abramelin extracted an oath from Abraham to “serve and fear” the Lord, and to “live and die in His most Holy Law.” After this, Abramelin gave Abraham the “Divine Science” and “True Magic” embedded within the two manuscripts, which he was to follow and give to only those whom he knew well.

Origin

The book exists in the form of seven manuscripts and an early printed edition. The provenance of the text has not been definitively identified. The earliest manuscripts are two versions that date from about 1608, are written in German and are now found in Wolfenbüttel.Another two manuscripts are in Dresden, and date from about 1700 and 1750 respectively.

The first printed version, also in German, dates to 1725 and was printed in Cologne by Peter Hammer. A partial copy in Hebrew is found in the Bodleian Library in Oxford, and dates from around 1740. A manuscript copy existed in French in the Bibliothèque de l’Arsenal in Paris, an institution founded in 1797. The French copy has since disappeared, but is available on microfilm. Another 17th-century manuscript in Italian exists in the ‘Legato Martinengo’ of the Queriniana Library in Brescia, Italy. It was part of the collection of the Count and Qabbalist Leopardo Martinengo of Barco and Pallavicina. The manuscript, unknown for centuries to international researchers until 2009, has been found by academic researcher Maria Elena Loda in the esoteric section. At the moment, it is the only known manuscript translation in Italian language of the Abramelin grimoire.

All German copies of the text consist of four books: an autobiographical account of the travels of Abraham of Worms to Egypt, a book of assorted materials from the corpus of the practical Kabbalah (including some which is duplicated in the German-Jewish grimoire called “The Sixth and 7th Books of Moses”) and the two books of magic given by Abramelin to Abraham. The well-known English translation by S.L. MacGregor Mathers from the French Manuscript in Paris contains only three of the four books. The Hebrew version in Oxford is limited to Book One, without reference to the further books.

Of all the extant sources, the German manuscripts in Wolfenbüttel and Dresden are taken by scholars to be the authoritative texts. According to respected Kabbalah scholar Gershom Scholem, the Hebrew version in Oxford was translated into Hebrew from German. An analysis of the spelling and language usage in the French manuscript indicates that it dates to the 18th century, and that it was also likely copied from a German original. Although the author quotes from the Jewish Book of Psalms, the version given is not from the Hebrew; rather, it is from the Latin Vulgate, a translation of the Bible employed by Roman Catholics at that time.

The German esoteric scholar Georg Dehn has argued that the author of The Book of Abramelin was Rabbi Yaakov Moelin (Hebrew יעקב בן משה מולין; ca. 1365–1427), a German Jewish Talmudist and posek (authority on Jewish law). (ref Georg Dehn, The Book of Abramelin: A New Translation, transl. by Steven Guth, Ibis Publishing, 2006)
Abramelin operation

The text describes an elaborate ritual whose purpose is to obtain the “knowledge and conversation” of the magician’s “guardian angel.” The preparations are elaborate, difficult, and long. All of the German texts describe a duration for the operation of 18 months before any divine contact is known. In the Mathers translation, the initial phase of working the system lasts only six months.

During the period of the work, the magician must daily pray before sunrise and again at sunset. During this preparatory phase, there are many restrictions: chastity must be observed, alcoholic beverages refused, and the magician must conduct his business with scrupulous fairness.

After the preparatory phase has been successfully completed, the magician’s Holy Guardian Angel will appear and reveal magical secrets.

Once this is accomplished, the magician must evoke the 12 Kings and Dukes of Hell (Lucifer, Satan, Leviathan, Belial, etc.) and bind them. Thereby, the magician gains command of them in his own mental universe, and removes their negative influence from his life. Further, these spirits must deliver a number of familiar spirits (four principal familiars, and several more associated with a set of magical word-square talismans provided in the Abramelin’s Book Four).

The magical goals for which the demons can be employed are typical of those found in grimoires: the practitioner is promised the ability to find buried treasure, cast love charms, the ability of magical flight, and the secret of invisibility, to list a small number of examples.

Magic squares feature prominently in the instructions for carrying out these operations, as does a recipe for an anointing oil (taken from Exodus 30), popularly used by ceremonial magicians under the name “Abramelin Oil”. There are also several further tools – such as a holy Lamp, a Wand made of an almond branch, a recipe for incense known today as “Abramelin Incense” (also taken from Exodus 30), various Robes, a square or seven-sided plate of silver or (bees) wax, etc.

Because the work involves evocation of demons, the Abramelin operation has been compared to Goetic magic, especially by European scholars. However, the text’s primary focus is upon the invocation of the guardian angel, and modern works on the subject tend to focus upon this aspect as well.

Magic word squares
The practical magic of Abramelin (found in both Book III of the French text, and Book IV of the German original) centers around a set of talismans composed of magic word squares. These are similar to traditional magic squares, though the latter are usually composed of numbers, while Abramelin’s squares contain letters. Commonly word squares are used as puzzles or as teaching aids for students. In the context of Abramelin, the focus becomes mystical—so that each square should contain words or names that relate to the magical goal of the square. A parallel is found in the famous Sator Arepo Tenet Opera Rotas word square, an altered version of which is also found among Abramelin’s squares.

For example, a square entitled “To walk under water for as long as you want” contains the word MAIAM (מים or ماء), the Hebrew and Arabic word for “water”. A square for recovering treasures of jewelry begins with the word TIPHARAH (תפארה, a variant of Tiferet), which can mean “golden ring” in Hebrew and is also the name of the sphere of “Beauty” (which has the planetary attribution of the Sun) on the Kabbalistic Tree of Life.

Abramelin and the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn
In 1897, The Book of the Sacred Magic of Abramelin the Mage was translated into English by the British occultist Samuel L. MacGregor Mathers. The magic described in the grimoire was influential in the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, of which Mathers was the head.

The British occultist Aleister Crowley, at the time a young member of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, started preparations for seeking the angel by following Abramelin’s instructions, in Boleskine House, Scotland, but he abandoned this plan to assist Mathers during the Golden Dawn schism of 1901.

Abramelin and Thelema
The Book of the Sacred Magic of Abramelin the Mage was to have a profound effect upon Crowley, the founder of Thelema. In 1906, Crowley decided to alter the Abramelin operation so that he might perform it during a trip he and his wife Rose Kelly and their infant daughter were taking through China. He reported first a vision of a shining figure who admitted him to the magical Order A∴A∴, and later a more drastic mystical experience that he considered to be the Knowledge and Conversation of his Holy Guardian Angel. However, he showed ambivalence about the role that his use of hashish had played in this experience, so in October 1908, he again performed the operation in Paris without its use.

As he developed the system of the A∴A∴, the Knowledge and Conversation of the Holy Guardian Angel was to become the fundamental task of every minor adept. Although Crowley would go on to create his own ritual for attaining this, while also saying that an adept could more or less achieve this mystical state in any number of ways, the fundamental concepts remained consistent with Abramelin.

Abramelin and contemporary eclectic occultism
Since the time of Mathers’ translation, The Book of the Sacred Magic of Abramelin the Mage has remained popular among English-speaking ceremonial magicians and occultists interested in Hermetic Qabalah, Christian Kabbalah and grimoires. A paperback reprint during the renewed rise of interest in hermeticism during the 1970s placed the book before a new generation of readers, and one offshoot of this was that a number of people, both within and without the Thelemic and Golden Dawn communities, claimed to have either undertaken the Abramelin operation in toto or to have successfully experimented with the magic squares and Abramelin oil formula found in the text.

There are several important differences between the original manuscripts and Mathers’ edition. First, one of the four books was missing entirely from the French manuscript with which he worked. Second, Mathers gave the duration of the operation as six months, whereas all other sources specify eighteen months. Third, possibly due to a mistranslation, Mathers changed one of the ingredients within the recipe for Abramelin oil, specifying galangal instead of the original herb calamus. The oil in the German manuscript sources also contains cassia and is nearly identical to the biblical recipe for Holy anointing oil. The differences between the recipes cause several notable changes in the oil’s characteristics, including edibility, fragrance, dermal sensation, and spiritual symbolism. Fourth, there are 242 word squares in Mathers’ translation, while the original German has 251. Most of the squares in Mathers are not completely filled in, and those that are differ markedly from the German sources.

A German translation, credited to Abraham of Worms and edited by Georg Dehn, was published in 2001 by Edition Araki. In the Dehn version, the fourth book is included and Mathers’ galangal substitution is reverted to calamus (though not in the English translation — see Abramelin Oil). All 251 of the word squares are completely filled in. An English translation of Dehn’s edition was published 2006 by the American publisher Nicholas Hays.

Source:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Book_of_Abramelin

References

The Book of the Sacred Magic of Abramelin the Mage translated by S.L. MacGregor Mathers (1897; reprinted by Dover Publications, 1975) ISBN 0-85030-255-2
Die heilige Magie des Abramelin von Abraham, edited by Johann Richard Beecken (Schikowski,1957) ISBN 3-87702-017-8
Das Buch der wahren Praktik in der goettlichen Magie edited by Jeorg von Inns (Diederichs Gelbe Reihe, 1988)
Abramelin & Co. by Peter-R. Koenig (Hiram-Edition, 1995) ISBN 3-927890-24-3
Carlos Gilly: Cimelia Rhodostaurotica – Die Rosenkreuzer im Spiegel der zwischen 1610 und 1660 entstandenen Handschriften und Drucke, Amsterdam, In de Pelikan 1995, S. 18-19 (the first critical discussion of the original manuscript of the pseudoepigraphical author Abraham of Worms, first written in German in 1608 and transmitted in codified form (Wolfenbüttel HAB, cod. guelf. 47.13 Aug. 4°, fols. 1r-31v), together with the corresponding decoding key (cod. guelf. 10.1.b Aug. 2°, S. 147). The manuscript is presented in its historical context and compared to the later, uncritical copies and editions).
Buch Abramelin das ist Die egyptischen großen Offenbarungen. Oder des Abraham von Worms Buch der wahren Praktik in der uralten göttlichen Magie (Editions Araki, 2001) ISBN 3-936149-00-3
Book of Abramelin: A New Translation by Abraham von Worms, edited by Georg Dehn, translated by Steven Guth, foreword by Lon Milo DuQuette, (Nicholas Hays, September 2006) ISBN 0-89254-127-X
Maria Elena Loda: La Magia Sacra di Abramelin , in Misinta n° 31, Brescia 2009 ( critical article about the Italian manuscript of the Martinengo Collection ).
External links
The Book of the Sacred Magic of Abramelin the Mage translated by S.L. Macgregor Mathers
Abramelin Yahoo group.
The Holy Guardian Angel: Exploring the Sacred Magick of Abramelin the Mage by Aaron Leitch
Abramelin’s Magickal Word Squares- Compiled and Corrected for the First Time by Aaron Leitch

Sep 01

Jacques de Molay

Ken Weigand

Ken Weigand

Senior Director / Webmaster at National Paranormal Society
Ken is a graphic designer, web developer and co-founder of One True Paranormal, a para-group in southwest Missouri.
Ken Weigand

Latest posts by Ken Weigand (see all)

demoly1-2 Jacques de Molay (French: [də mɔlɛ]; c. 1243 – 18 March 1314)[2] was the 23rd and last Grand Master of the Knights Templar, leading the Order from 20 April 1292 until it was dissolved by order of Pope Clement V in 1307.Though little is known of his actual life and deeds except for his last years as Grand Master, he is the best known Templar, along with the Order’s founder and first Grand Master, Hugues de Payens (1070–1136). Jacques de Molay’s goal as Grand Master was to reform the Order, and adjust it to the situation in the Holy Land during the waning days of the Crusades. As European support for the Crusades had dwindled, other forces were at work which sought to disband the Order and claim the wealth of the Templars as their own.

King Philip IV of France, deeply in debt to the Templars, had De Molay and many other French Templars arrested in 1307 and tortured into making false confessions. When De Molay later retracted his confession, Philip had him slowly burned upon a scaffold on an island in the River Seine in Paris, in March 1314. The sudden end of both the centuries-old order of Templars and the dramatic execution of its last leader turned De Molay into a legendary figure.

YOUTH

Little is known of his early years, but De Molay was probably born in Molay, Haute-Saône, in the County of Burgundy, at the time a territory ruled by Otto III as part of the Holy Roman Empire, and in modern times in the area of Franche-Comté, northeastern France. His birth year is not certain, but judging by statements made during the later trials, was probably between 1240 and 1250. He was born, as most Templar knights were, into a family of minor or middle nobility. It is said he was dubbed a Knight at age 21 in 1265 and that he was executed in 1314 at age 70. These two facts lead to the belief that he was born in 1244. In 1265, as a young man, he was received into the Order of the Templars in a chapel at the Beaune House, by Humbert de Pairaud, the Visitor of France and England. Another prominent Templar in attendance was Amaury de la Roche, Templar Master of the province of France. Around 1270, De Molay went to the East (Outremer), though little is remembered of his activities for the next 20 years. demoly2

GRAND MASTER

After the Fall of Acre to the Egyptian Mamluks in 1291, the Franks (Europeans) who were able to do so retreated to the island of Cyprus. It became the headquarters of the dwindling Kingdom of Jerusalem, and the base of operations for any future military attempts by the Crusaders against the Egyptian Mamluks, who for their part were systematically conquering any last Crusader strongholds on the mainland. Templars in Cyprus included Jacques de Molay and Thibaud Gaudin, the 22nd Grand Master. During a meeting assembled on the island in the autumn of 1291, De Molay spoke of reforming the Order, and put himself forward as an alternative to the current Grand Master. Gaudin died around 1292 and, as there were no other serious contenders for the role at the time, De Molay was soon elected.

In spring 1293, he began a tour of the West to try to muster more support for a reconquest of the Holy Land. Developing relationships with European leaders such as Pope Boniface VIII, Edward I of England, James I of Aragon and Charles II of Naples, De Molay’s immediate goals were to strengthen the defence of Cyprus and rebuild the Templar forces. From his travels, he was able to secure authorization from some monarchs for the export of supplies to Cyprus, but could obtain no firm commitment for a new Crusade. There was talk of merging the Templars with one of the other military orders, the Knights Hospitaller. The Grand Masters of both orders opposed such a merger, but pressure increased from the Papacy.

It is known that De Molay held two general meetings of his order in southern France, at Montpellier in 1293 and at Arles in 1296, where he tried to make reforms. In the autumn of 1296, De Molay was back in Cyprus to defend his order against the interests of Henry II of Cyprus, which conflict had its roots back in the days of Guillaume de Beaujeu.

From 1299 to 1303, De Molay was engaged in planning and executing a new attack against the Mamluks. The plan was to coordinate actions between the Christian military orders, the King of Cyprus, the aristocracy of Cyprus, the forces of Cilician Armenia, and a new potential ally, the Mongols of the Ilkhanate (Persia), to oppose the Egyptian Mamluks and retake the coastal city of Tortosa in Syria. For generations, there had been communications between the Mongols and Europeans towards the possibility of forging a Franco-Mongol alliance against the Mamluks, but without success. The Mongols had been repeatedly attempting to conquer Syria themselves, each time being forced back either by the Egyptian Mamluks, or having to retreat because of a civil war within the Mongol Empire, such as having to defend from attacks from the Mongol Golden Horde to the north.

In 1299, the Ilkhanate again attempted to conquer Syria, having some preliminary success against the Mamluks in the Battle of Wadi al-Khazandar in December 1299.

In 1300, De Molay and other forces from Cyprus put together a small fleet of 16 ships which committed raids along the Egyptian and Syrian coasts. The force was commanded by King Henry II of Jerusalem, the king of Cyprus, accompanied by his brother, Amalric, Lord of Tyre, and the heads of the military orders, with the ambassador of the Mongol leader Ghazan also in attendance. The ships left Famagusta on 20 July 1300, and under the leadership of Admiral Baudouin de Picquigny, raided the coasts of Egypt and Syria: Rosetta, Alexandria, Acre, Tortosa and Maraclea, before returning to Cyprus.

The Cypriots then prepared for an attack on Tortosa in late 1300, sending a joint force to a staging area on the island of Ruad, from which raids were launched on the mainland. The intent was to establish a Templar bridgehead to await assistance from Ghazan’s Mongols, but the Mongols failed to appear in 1300. The same happened in 1301 and 1302, and the island was finally lost in the Siege of Ruad on 26 September 1302, eliminating the Crusaders’ last foothold near the mainland. Following the loss of Ruad, De Molay abandoned the tactic of small advance forces, and instead put his energies into trying to raise support for a new major Crusade, as well as strengthening Templar authority in Cyprus. When a power struggle erupted between King Henry II and his brother Amalric, the Templars supported Amalric, who took the crown and had his brother exiled in 1306. Meanwhile, pressure increased in Europe that the Templars should be merged with the other military orders, perhaps all placed under the authority of one king, and that individual should become the new King of Jerusalem when it was conquered.

TRAVEL TO FRANCE

In 1305, the newly elected Pope Clement V asked the leaders of the military orders for their opinions concerning a new crusade and the merging of the orders. De Molay was asked to write memoranda on each of the issues, which he did during the summer of 1306. De Molay was opposed to the merger, believing instead that having separate military orders was a stronger position, as the missions of each order were somewhat different. He was also of the belief that if there were to be a new crusade, it needed to be a large one, as the smaller attempts were not effective.

On 6 June, the leaders of both the Templars and the Hospitallers were officially asked to come to the Papal offices in Poitiers to discuss these matters, with the date of the meeting scheduled as All Saints Day in 1306, though it later had to be postponed due to the Pope’s illness with gastro-enteritis. De Molay left Cyprus on 15 October, arriving in France in late 1306 or early 1307; however, the meeting was again delayed until late May due to the Pope’s illness.

King Philip IV of France, deeply in debt to the Templars, was in favor of merging the Orders under his own command, thereby making himself Rex Bellator, or War King. De Molay, however, rejected the idea. Philip was already at odds with the papacy, trying to tax the clergy, and had been attempting to assert his own authority as higher than that of the Pope.

For this, one of Clement’s predecessors, Pope Boniface VIII, had attempted to have Philip excommunicated, but Philip then had Boniface abducted and charged with heresy. The elderly Boniface was rescued, but then died of shock shortly thereafter. His successor Pope Benedict XI did not last long, dying in less than a year, possibly poisoned via Philip’s councillor Guillaume de Nogaret. It took a year to choose the next Pope, the Frenchman Clement V, who was also under strong pressure to bend to Philip’s will.

Clement moved the Papacy from Italy to Poitiers, France, where Philip continued to assert more dominance over the Papacy and the Templars. The leader of the Hospitallers, Fulk de Villaret, was also delayed in his travel to France, as he was engaged with a battle at Rhodes. He did not arrive until late summer, so while waiting for his arrival, de Molay met with the Pope on other matters, one of which was the charges by one or more ousted Templars who had made accusations of impropriety in the Templars’ initiation ceremony.

De Molay had already spoken with the king in Paris on 24 June 1307 about the accusations against his order and was partially reassured. Returning to Poitiers, De Molay asked the Pope to set up an inquiry to quickly clear the Order of the rumours and accusations surrounding it, and the Pope convened an inquiry on 24 August.

ARREST AND CHARGES

There were five initial charges lodged against the Templars. The first was the renouncement and spitting on the cross during initiation into the Order. The second was the stripping of the man to be initiated and the thrice kissing of that man by the preceptor on the navel, posteriors and the mouth. The third was telling the neophyte (novice) that unnatural lust was lawful and indulged in commonly. The fourth was that the cord worn by the neophyte day and night was consecrated by wrapping it around an idol in the form of a human head with a great beard, and that this idol was adored in all chapters. The fifth was that the priests of the order did not consecrate the host in celebrating Mass. Subsequently, the charges would be increased and would become, according to the procedures, lists of articles 86 to 127 in which will be added a few other charges, such as the prohibition to priests who do not belong to the order.

On 14 September, Philip took advantage of the rumors and inquiry to begin his move against the Templars, sending out a secret order to his agents in all parts of France to implement a mass arrest of all Templars at dawn on 13 October. Philip wanted the Templars arrested and their possessions confiscated to incorporate their wealth into the Royal Treasury and to be free of the enormous debt he owed the Templar Order.

De Molay was in Paris on 12 October, where he was a pallbearer at the funeral of Catherine of Courtenay, wife of Count Charles of Valois, and sister-in-law of King Philip. In a dawn raid on Friday, 13 October 1307, De Molay and sixty of his Templar brothers were arrested. Philip then had the Templars charged with heresy and many other trumped-up charges, most of which were identical to the charges which had previously been leveled by Philip’s agents against Pope Boniface VIII.

During forced interrogation by royal agents at the University of Paris on 24/25 October, De Molay confessed that the Templar initiation ritual included “denying Christ and trampling on the Cross”. He was also forced to write a letter asking every Templar to admit to these acts. Under pressure from Philip IV, Pope Clement V ordered the arrest of all the Templars throughout Christendom. The pope still wanted to hear De Molay’s side of the story, and dispatched two cardinals to Paris in December 1307. In front of the cardinals, De Molay retracted his earlier confessions. A power struggle ensued between the king and the pope, which was settled in August 1308 when they agreed to split the convictions.

Through the papal bull Faciens misericordiam, the procedure to prosecute the Templars was set out on a duality where one commission would judge individuals of the Order and a different commission would judge the Order as an entity. Pope Clement called for an ecumenical council to meet in Vienne in 1310 to decide the future of the Templars. In the meantime, the Order’s dignitaries, among them De Molay, were to be judged by the pope. In the royal palace at Chinon, De Molay was again questioned by the cardinals, but this time with royal agents present, and he returned to his forced admissions made in 1307.

In November 1309, the Papal Commission for the Kingdom of France began its own hearings, during which De Molay again recanted, stating that he did not acknowledge the accusations brought against his order. ny further opposition by the Templars was effectively broken when Philip used the previously forced confessions to sentence 54 Templars to be burnt at the stake on 10–12 May 1310. The council which had been called for 1310 was delayed for two years due to the length of the trials, but finally was convened in 1312.

On 22 March 1312, at the Council of Vienne, the Order of the Knights Templar was abolished by papal decree.

DEATH

Of his death it is recorded: “The cardinals dallied with their duty until 18 March 1314, when, on a scaffold in front of Notre Dame, Jacques de Molay, Templar Grand Master, Geoffroi de Charney, Master of Normandy, Hugues de Peraud, Visitor of France, and Godefroi de Gonneville, Master of Aquitaine, were brought forth from the jail in which for nearly seven years they had lain, to receive the sentence agreed upon by the cardinals, in conjunction with the Archbishop of Sens and some other prelates whom they had called in.

Considering the offences which the culprits had confessed and confirmed, the penance imposed was in accordance with rule — that of perpetual imprisonment. The affair was supposed to be concluded when, to the dismay of the prelates and wonderment of the assembled crowd, De Molay and Geoffroi de Charney arose. They had been guilty, they said, not of the crimes imputed to them, but of basely betraying their Order to save their own lives. It was pure and holy; the charges were fictitious and the confessions false. Hastily the cardinals delivered them to the Prevot of Paris, and retired to deliberate on this unexpected contingency, but they were saved all trouble.

When the news was carried to Philippe he was furious. A short consultation with his council only was required. The canons pronounced that a relapsed heretic was to be burned without a hearing; the facts were notorious and no formal judgment by the papal commission need be waited for. That same day, by sunset, a pile was erected on a small island in the Seine, the Ile des Juifs, near the palace garden. There de Molay and de Charney were slowly burned to death, refusing all offers of pardon for retraction, and bearing their torment with a composure which won for them the reputation of martyrs among the people, who reverently collected their ashes as relics.” (Note: the account varies by one day, not unusual for chronicles of the middle ages.

CHINON PARCHMENT

September 2001, Barbara Frale found a copy of the Chinon Parchment in the Vatican Secret Archives, a document which explicitly confirms that in 1308 Pope Clement V absolved Jacques de Molay and other leaders of the Order including Geoffroi de Charney and Hugues de Pairaud. She published her findings in the Journal of Medieval History in 2004. Another Chinon parchment dated 20 August 1308 addressed to Philip IV of France, well-known to historians, stated that absolution had been granted to all those Templars that had confessed to heresy “and restored them to the Sacraments and to the unity of the Church”. deMolay1

LEGENDS

The sudden arrest of the Templars, the conflicting stories about confessions, and the dramatic deaths by burning, generated many stories and legends about both the Order, and its last Grand Master. Conquest of Jerusalem n France in the 19th century, false stories circulated that de Molay had captured Jerusalem in 1300. These rumors are likely related to the fact that the medieval historian the Templar of Tyre wrote about a Mongol general named “Mulay” who occupied Syria and Palestine for a few months in early 1300.

The Mongol Mulay and the Templar de Molay were entirely different people, but some historians regularly confused the two. The confusion was enhanced in 1805, when the French playwright/historian François Raynouard made claims that Jerusalem had been captured by the Mongols, with de Molay in charge of one of the Mongol divisions. “In 1299, the Grand-Master was with his knights at the taking of Jerusalem.” This story of wishful thinking was so popular in France, that in 1846 a large-scale painting was created by Claude Jacquand, titled Molay Prend Jerusalem, 1299 (“Molay Takes Jerusalem, 1299”), which depicts the supposed event.

Today the painting hangs in the Hall of the Crusades in the French national museum in Versailles. In the 1861 edition of the French encyclopedia, the Nouvelle Biographie Universelle, it even lists de Molay as a Mongol commander in its “Molay” article: “Jacques de Molay was not inactive in this decision of the Great Khan. This is proven by the fact that Molay was in command of one of the wings of the Mongol army.

With the troops under his control, he invaded Syria, participated in the first battle in which the Sultan was vanquished, pursued the routed Malik Nasir as far as the desert of Egypt: then, under the guidance of Kutluk, a Mongol general, he was able to take Jerusalem, among other cities, over the Muslims, and the Mongols entered to celebrate Easter” —Nouvelle Biographie Universelle, “Molay” article, 1861. Modern historians, however, state that the truth of the matter is this: There are indeed numerous ancient records of Mongol raids and occupations of Jerusalem (from Western, Armenian, or Arab sources), and in 1300 the Mongols did achieve a brief victory in Syria which caused a Muslim retreat, and allowed the Mongols to launch raids into the Levant as far as Gaza for a period of a few months.

During that year, rumors flew through Europe that the Mongols had recaptured Jerusalem and were going to return the city to the Europeans. However, this was only an urban legend, as the only activities that the Mongols had even engaged in were some minor raids through Palestine, which may or may not have even passed through Jerusalem itself. Regardless of what the Mongols may or may not have done, de Molay was never a Mongol commander, and probably never set foot in Jerusalem.

The Shroud of Turin Geoffroi de Charny (the French Knight who died at the 1356 battle of Poitiers) and his wife Jeanne de Vergy are the first reliably recorded owners of the Shroud of Turin. This Geoffroi participated in a failed crusade under Humbert II of Viennois in the late 1340s. He is sometimes confused with Templar Geoffroi de Charney.

Historical origin of “Inquisition” charge of an idol of a bearded man As stated above, of the five original accusations made against the Knights Templars one was the “worshipping of an idol of a man with a long beard”.

It specifically states: “… The cord which the Templars wore over the shirt day and night as a symbol of chastity had been consecrated by wrapping it around an idol in the form of a human head with a great beard, and this head was adored in the chapters …” The image was never found. It never mentions the image to be de Molay.

Further, it seems to describe a rounded idol. If it existed at all, and was not just a product of torture, it could not have been the Shroud of Turin just by its description. There were many early iconic images of a bearded Jesus that existed at that time. Curse It is said that Jacques de Molay cursed King Philip IV of France and his descendants from his execution pyre. The story of the shouted curse appears to be a combination of words by a different Templar, and those of de Molay.

An eyewitness to the execution stated that de Molay showed no sign of fear, and told those present that God would avenge their deaths. Another variation on this story was told by the contemporary chronicler Ferretto of Vicenza, who applied the idea to a Neapolitan Templar brought before Clement V, whom he denounced for his injustice. Some time later, as he was about to be executed, he appealed “from this your heinous judgement to the living and true God, who is in Heaven”, warning the pope that, within a year and a day, he and Philip IV would be obliged to answer for their crimes in God’s presence.

It is true that Philip and Clement V both died within a year of Molay’s execution, Clement finally succumbing to a long illness on 20 April 1314, and Philip in a hunting accident. Then followed the rapid succession of the last Direct Capetian kings of France between 1314 and 1328, the three sons and a grandson of Philip IV. Within 14 years from the death of de Molay, the 300-year-old House of Capet collapsed. This series of events forms the basis of Les Rois Maudits (The Accursed Kings), a series of historical novels written by Maurice Druon between 1955 and 1977, which was also turned into two French television miniseries in 1972 and 2005. The American historian Henry Charles Lea wrote: “Even in distant Germany Philippe’s death was spoken of as a retribution for his destruction of the Templars, and Clement was described as shedding tears of remorse on his death-bed for three great crimes, the poisoning of Henry VI, Holy Roman Emperor, and the ruin of the Templars and Beguines”.

FREEMASONRY

Some 400 years after the death of de Molay and the dissolution of the Knights Templar, the fraternal order of Freemasonry began to emerge in northern Europe. The Masons developed an elaborate mythos about their Order, and some claimed heritage from entities in history, ranging from the mystique of the Templars to the builders of Solomon’s Temple. The stories of the Templars’ secret initiation ceremonies also proved a tempting source for Masonic writers who were creating new works of pseudohistory. As described by modern historian Malcolm Barber in The New Knighthood: “It was during the 1760s that German masons introduced a specific Templar connection, claiming that the Order, through its occupation of the Temple of Solomon, had been the repository of secret wisdom and magical powers, which James of Molay had handed down to his successor before his execution and of which the eighteenth-century Freemasons were the direct heirs.”

The modern Masonic Knights Templar is an international philanthropic and chivalric order affiliated with Freemasonry, and begun in Ireland perhaps as long ago as 1780. Unlike the initial degrees conferred in a Masonic Lodge, which only require a belief in a Supreme Being regardless of religious affiliation, the Knights Templar is one of several additional Masonic Orders in which membership is open only to Freemasons who profess a belief in the Christian religion. The full title of this Order is The United Religious, Military and Masonic Orders of the Temple and of St John of Jerusalem, Palestine, Rhodes and Malta.

The story of de Molay’s brave defiance of his inquisitors has been incorporated in various forms into Masonic lore; most notably in the form of a youth group for young men aged 12 to 21, sponsored by Freemasonry, and named after the last Grand Master of the Knights Templar. DeMolay International, also known as “The Order of DeMolay,” was founded in Kansas City in 1919 by Freemason Frank S. Land.

Similar to what happens in Freemasonry, new members are ceremoniously initiated using “degrees” that are part of the Order’s secret ritual, authored, in the case of the Order of DeMolay’s ritual, by Frank A. Marshall at founder Land’s request in 1919. The first, and less dramatic of the two degrees is called “the Initiatory Degree,” wherein initiates are escorted around the meeting room and instructed in the precepts and Seven Cardinal Virtues of the Order. The second of the two degrees, known as “the DeMolay Degree,” which, along with the Initiatory Degree, members and observers are sworn to keep secret, dramatically recreates the trial, “before a Commission in its Council Chamber,” of the historic characters named in the ritual as “Jacques DeMolay and his three preceptors, Geoffroi de Charney, Godfrey de Goneville, and Hughes de Peralde.”

The DeMolay Degree, in which players dress in robes and other period costume, and appear on a dimly-lit stage whereupon they dramatically deliver memorized lines prescribed in the ritual, is described therein as depicting “the tragic climax in the career of Jacques DeMolay, the hero and martyr who is the exemplar of our Order.” The stage instructions include that “the foremost point to be remembered is to portray Jacques DeMolay as the hero and to select an interpretation for the DeMolay Degree which will enhance the lessons of fidelity and toleration.” The drama concludes with the commission condemning the four to life imprisonment; however, according to the ritual, “so incensed was the king at the noble defiance and defense of DeMolay and Geoffroi de Charney that he overrode the Commission’s verdict and hurried DeMolay and de Charney to the stake on an island near the Cathedral, where they were barbarously burned.”

1. Jacques de Molay 1244 – 1314. (2010, March 31). Retrieved from Templar history: http://blog.templarhistory.com/2010/03/jacques-de-molay-1244-1314/

2. Hodappp, C. (2009, March 18). 695th Anniversary of the Death of Jacques de Molay. Retrieved from Templar Code for Dummies blog: http://templarcodefordummies.blogspot.com/2009/03/694th-anniversary-of-death-of-jacques.html

3. Trial of the Knights Templar: Arrests, charges, and subsequent events. (n.d.). Retrieved from Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trial_of_the_Knights_Templar#Arrests_charges_and_subsequent_events

4. Zolnai, A. (n.d.). Jacques de Molay. Retrieved from Project Beauceant: http://www.templiers.org/jacquesmolay-eng.php

5. http://www.mastermason.com/mmcdemolay/Res%20-%20JD%20Execution%20Site.htm

Aug 01

Merlin

Ken Weigand

Ken Weigand

Senior Director / Webmaster at National Paranormal Society
Ken is a graphic designer, web developer and co-founder of One True Paranormal, a para-group in southwest Missouri.
Ken Weigand

Latest posts by Ken Weigand (see all)

Courtesy of:  https://en.wikipedia.org

MERLINMerlin is a legendary figure best known as the wizard featured in Arthurian legend. The standard depiction of the character first appears in Geoffrey of Monmouth’s Historia Regum Britanniae, written c. 1136, and is based on an amalgamation of previous historical and legendary figures. Geoffrey combined existing stories of Myrddin Wyllt (Merlinus Caledonensis), a North Brythonic prophet and madman with no connection to King Arthur, with tales of the Romano-British war leader Ambrosius Aurelianus to form the composite figure he called Merlin Ambrosius (Welsh: Myrddin Emrys).

Geoffrey’s rendering of the character was immediately popular, especially in Wales. Later writers expanded the account to produce a fuller image of the wizard. Merlin’s traditional biography casts him as a cambion: born of a mortal woman, sired by an incubus, the non-human wellspring from whom he inherits his supernatural powers and abilities. The name of Merlin’s mother is not usually stated but is given as Adhan in the oldest version of the Prose Brut. Merlin matures to an ascendant sagehood and engineers the birth of Arthur through magic and intrigue. Later authors have Merlin serve as the king’s advisor until he is bewitched and imprisoned by the Lady of the Lake.

Merlin is a legendary figure best known as the wizard featured in Arthurian legend.

Name and etymology

The name “Merlin” derives from the Welsh Myrddin, the name of the bard Myrddin Wyllt, one of the chief sources for the later legendary figure. Geoffrey of Monmouth Latinised the name to Merlinus in his works. The medievalist Gaston Paris suggests that Geoffrey chose the form Merlinus rather than the regular Merdinus to avoid a resemblance to the Anglo-Norman word merde (from Latin merda), for faeces.

Clas Myrddin, or Merlin’s Enclosure, is an early name for Great Britain stated in the Third Series of Welsh Triads.

The Celticist A. O. H. Jarman suggests the Welsh name Myrddin (Welsh pronunciation: [ˈmərðɪn]) was derived from the toponym Caerfyrddin, the Welsh name for the town known in English as Carmarthen.This contrasts with the popular but false folk etymology that the town was named for the bard. The name Carmarthen derives from the town’s previous Roman name, Moridunum, itself derived from Celtic Brittonic *moridunon, “sea fortress.”

Geoffrey’s sources

Geoffrey’s composite Merlin is based primarily on Myrddin Wyllt, also called Merlinus Caledonensis, and Aurelius Ambrosius, a mostly fictionalised version of the historical war leader Ambrosius Aurelianus. The former had nothing to do with Arthur: in British poetry he was a bard driven mad after witnessing the horrors of war, who fled civilization to become a wild man of the wood in the 6th century. Geoffrey had this individual in mind when he wrote his earliest surviving work, the Prophetiae Merlini (Prophecies of Merlin), which he claimed were the actual words of the legendary madman.

Geoffrey’s Prophetiae do not reveal much about Merlin’s background. When he included the prophet in his next work, Historia Regum Britanniae, he supplemented the characterisation by attributing to him stories about Aurelius Ambrosius, taken from Nennius’ Historia Brittonum. According to Nennius, Ambrosius was discovered when the British king Vortigern was trying to erect a tower. The tower always collapsed before completion, and his wise men told him the only solution was to sprinkle the foundation with the blood of a child born without a father. Ambrosius was rumoured to be such a child, but when brought before the king, he revealed the real reason for the tower’s collapse: below the foundation was a lake containing two dragons who fought a battle representing the struggle between the Saxons and the Britons, which struggle suggested that the tower would never stand under the leadership of Vortigern, but only under that of Ambrosius. (This is why Ambrosius is ‘given’ the kingdom, or the ‘tower’ — he tells Vortigern to go elsewhere and says ‘I will stay here’. The tower is metaphorically the kingdom, which is the notional ability to beat the Saxons.) Geoffrey retells this story in Historia Regum Britanniæ with some embellishments, and gives the fatherless child the name of the prophetic bard, Merlin. He keeps this new figure separate from Aurelius Ambrosius and, with regard to his changing of the original Nennian character, he states that Ambrosius was also called ‘Merlin’, that is, ‘Ambrosius Merlinus’. He goes on to add new episodes that tie Merlin into the story of King Arthur and his predecessors, such as the bringing of the stones for Stonehenge from Preseli Hills in south-west Wales and Ireland.

Geoffrey dealt with Merlin again in his third work, Vita Merlini. He based the Vita on stories of the original 6th-century Myrddin. Though set long after his time frame for the life of “Merlin Ambrosius”, he tries to assert the characters are the same with references to King Arthur and his death as told in the Historia Regum Britanniae.

Geoffrey’s sources

Geoffrey’s account of Merlin Ambrosius’ early life in the Historia Regum Britanniae is based on the story of Ambrosius in the Historia Brittonum. He adds his own embellishments to the tale, which he sets in Carmarthen, Wales (Welsh: Caerfyrddin). While Nennius’ Ambrosius eventually reveals himself to be the son of a Roman consul, Geoffrey’s Merlin is begotten on a king’s daughter by an incubus. The story of Vortigern’s tower is essentially the same; the underground dragons, one white and one red, represent the Saxons and the British, and their final battle is a portent of things to come.

At this point Geoffrey inserts a long section of Merlin’s prophecies, taken from his earlier Prophetiae Merlini. He tells only two further tales of the character. In the first, Merlin creates Stonehenge as a burial place for Aurelius Ambrosius. In the second, Merlin’s magic enables Uther Pendragon to enter into Tintagel in disguise and father his son Arthur with his enemy’s wife, Igraine. These episodes appear in many later adaptations of Geoffrey’s account. As Lewis Thorpe notes, Merlin disappears from the narrative after this; he does not tutor and advise Arthur as in later versions.

Later adaptations of the legend

Several decades later, the poet Robert de Boron retold this material in his poem Merlin. Only a few lines of the poem have survived, but a prose retelling became popular and was later incorporated into two other romances. In Robert’s account, as in Geoffrey’s Historia, Merlin is begotten by a demon on a virgin as an intended Antichrist. This plot is thwarted when the expectant mother informs her confessor Blaise of her predicament; they immediately baptize the boy at birth, thus freeing him from the power of Satan. The demonic legacy invests Merlin with a preternatural knowledge of the past and present, which is supplemented by God, who gives the boy a prophetic knowledge of the future.

Robert de Boron lays great emphasis on Merlin’s power to shapeshift, on his joking personality, and on his connection to the Holy Grail. This text introduces Merlin’s master Blaise, who is pictured as writing down Merlin’s deeds, explaining how they came to be known and preserved. Robert was inspired by Wace’s Roman de Brut, an Anglo-Norman adaptation of Geoffrey’s Historia. Robert’s poem was rewritten in prose in the 12th century as the Estoire de Merlin, also called the Vulgate or Prose Merlin. It was originally attached to a cycle of prose versions of Robert’s poems, which tells the story of the Holy Grail: brought from the Middle East to Britain by followers of Joseph of Arimathea, the Grail is eventually recovered by Arthur’s knight Percival.

The Prose Merlin contains many instances of Merlin’s shapeshifting. He appears as a woodcutter with an axe about his neck, big shoes, a torn coat, bristly hair, and a large beard. He is later found in the forest of Northumberland by a follower of Uther’s disguised as an ugly man and tending a great herd of beasts. He then appears first as a handsome man and then as a beautiful boy. Years later, he approaches Arthur disguised as a peasant wearing leather boots, a wool coat, a hood, and a belt of knotted sheepskin. He is described as tall, black and bristly, and as seeming cruel and fierce. Finally, he appears as an old man with a long beard, short and hunchbacked, in an old torn woolen coat, who carries a club and drives a multitude of beasts before him (Loomis, 1927).

The Prose Merlin later came to serve as a sort of prequel to the vast Lancelot-Grail, also known as the Vulgate Cycle. The authors of that work expanded it with the Vulgate Suite du Merlin (Vulgate Merlin Continuation), which describes King Arthur’s early adventures. The Prose Merlin was also used as a prequel to the later Post-Vulgate Cycle, the authors of which added their own continuation, the Huth Merlin or Post-Vulgate Suite du Merlin.

In the Livre d’Artus, Merlin enters Rome in the form of a huge stag with a white fore-foot. He bursts into the presence of Julius Caesar and tells the emperor that only the wild man of the woods can interpret the dream that has been troubling him. Later, he returns in the form of a black, shaggy man, barefoot, with a torn coat. In another episode, he decides to do something that will be spoken of forever. Going into the forest of Brocéliande, he transforms himself into a herdsman carrying a club and wearing a wolf-skin and leggings. He is large, bent, black, lean, hairy and old, and his ears hang down to his waist. His head is as big as a buffalo’s, his hair is down to his waist, he has a hump on his back, his feet and hands are backwards, he’s hideous, and is over 18 feet tall. By his arts, he calls a herd of deer to come and graze around him (Loomis, 1927).

These works were adapted and translated into several other languages. The Post-Vulgate Suite was the inspiration for the early parts of Sir Thomas Malory’s English language Le Morte d’Arthur. Many later medieval works also deal with the Merlin legend. The Italian The Prophecies of Merlin contains long prophecies of Merlin (mostly concerned with 13th-century Italian politics), some by his ghost after his death. The prophecies are interspersed with episodes relating Merlin’s deeds and with various Arthurian adventures in which Merlin does not appear at all. The earliest English verse romance concerning Merlin is Arthour and Merlin, which drew from the chronicles and the French Lancelot-Grail.

As the Arthurian myths were retold and embellished, Merlin’s prophetic aspects were sometimes de-emphasised in favour of portraying him as a wizard and elder advisor to Arthur. On the other hand, in the Lancelot-Grail it is said that Merlin was never baptized and never did any good in his life, only evil. Medieval Arthurian tales abound in inconsistencies. A manuscript found in Bath from the 1420s simply records a “Merlyn” as having helped Uther Pendragon with his “sotelness” or subtleness, presumably but not necessarily magic. His role could be embellished and added to that of Aurelianus Ambrosius, or he could be made into one of old Uther’s favourite advisors and naught more.

In the Lancelot-Grail and later accounts, Merlin’s eventual downfall came from his lusting after a huntress named Niviane (or Nymue, Nimue, Niniane, Nyneue, or Viviane in some versions of the legend), who was the daughter of the king of Northumberland. In the Suite du Merlin,[11] for example, Niviane is about to depart from Arthur’s court, but, with some encouragement from Merlin, Arthur asks her to stay in his castle with the queen. During her stay, Merlin falls in love with her and desires her. Niviane, frightened that Merlin might take advantage of her with his spells, swears that she will never love him unless he swears to teach her all of his magic. Merlin consents, unaware that throughout the course of her lessons, Niviane will use Merlin’s own powers against him, forcing him to do her bidding.

When Niviane finally goes back to her country, Merlin escorts her. However, along the way, Merlin receives a vision that Arthur is in need of assistance against the schemes of Morgan le Fay. Niviane and Merlin rush back to Arthur’s castle, but have to stop for the night in a stone chamber, once inhabited by two lovers. Merlin relates that when the lovers died, they were placed in a magic tomb within a room in the chamber. That night, while Merlin is asleep, Niviane, still disgusted with Merlin’s desire for her, as well as his demonic heritage, casts a spell over him and places him in the magic tomb so that he can never escape, thus causing his death.

Merlin’s death is recounted differently in other versions of the narrative; the enchanted prison is variously described as a cave (in the Lancelot-Grail), a large rock (in Le Morte d’Arthur), an invisible tower, or a tree.[citation needed] In his book “The Meaning of Trees: botany, history, healing, lore” Fred Hageneder writes on page 149,

“According to Breton legend, the legendary wise man Merlin climbed the Pine of Barenton (from bel nemeton, “Sacred Grove of Bel”), just as shamans climb the World Tree. Here, he had a profound revelation and he never returned to the mortal world. In later versions, Merlin’s glas tann was mistranslated as a “glass house”. It is actually a living tree (from the Cornish glas “(ever)green”, and tann, “sacred tree”), and from these words the name of Glastonbury, in Somerset, England is sometimes derived.[citation needed] Hence, according to legend, it is a sacred tree in which the soul of Merlin awaits his return.”

In the Prophetiae Merlini, Niviane confines him in the forest of Brocéliande with walls of air, visible as mist to others but as a beautiful tower to him (Loomis, 1927). This is unfortunate for Arthur, who has lost his greatest counselor. Another version has it that Merlin angers Arthur to the point where he beheads, cuts in half, burns, and curses Merlin.

Many parts of Arthurian fiction include Merlin as a character. Mark Twain made Merlin the villain in his 1889 novel A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court. C. S. Lewis used the figure of Merlin Ambrosius in his 1946 novel That Hideous Strength, the third book in the Space Trilogy. Merlin is also portrayed in the T. A. Barron series The Lost Years of Merlin and The Great Tree of Avalon, where his teenage years on the island of Fincayra and later life defending Avalon are featured. In Robert Holdstock’s Merlin Codex, a trilogy of mythic fiction novels, Merlin’s adventures in Europe before the time of King Arthur are detailed, placing him alongside Jason and the Argonauts, and Urtha Pendragon. Merlin is mentioned several times throughout J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series. His chocolate frog card reads; “Medieval, dates unknown. Most famous wizard of all time. Sometimes known as the Prince of Enchanters. Part of the Court of King Arthur.”

Merlin is a major character in T. H. White’s collection The Once and Future King (1938 onwards; full version 1958) and the related The Book of Merlyn. Mary Stewart produced an influential quintet of Arthurian novels, with Merlin as the protagonist in the first three: The Crystal Cave (1970), The Hollow Hills (1973) and The Last Enchantment (1979). John Gloag’s 1977 novel Artorius Rex draws on history to tell the story of Arthur. Merlin plays a modern-day villain in Roger Zelazny’s short story “The Last Defender of Camelot” (1979), which won the 1980 Balrog Award for short fiction and was adapted into an episode of the television series The Twilight Zone in 1986. Kristine Papin Morris explores Merlin’s emotional childhood in the Merlin of Carmarthen series featuring Merlin of Carmarthen[14] and Merlin of Calidon. Merlin’s Mirror, by Andre Norton, tells the story of the half-human, half-alien Merlin.

In the series The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica by James A. Owen Merlin is from a place known as the Archipelago of Dreams where he was born Myrdyyn along with his twin brother, Madoc (who would later on become Mordred). He is portrayed as an ambitious and treacherous man who was banished from the Archipelago for trying to use knowledge of the future to shape it. He soon becomes a caretaker of the Holy Grail in the library of Alexandria, but is soon arrested for trying to steal it. He is able to escape however, and banish his brother in his place. He then travels to Britain (then called Albion) and changes his name to Merlin. Sometime after this, he becomes the apparent father of Arthur through the Lady of the Lake.

Merlin is an important figure in films and television programs, where he functions often as a teacher or mentor figure, a role that he shares with other wizard and wizard-like figures in popular texts, such as Gandalf the White. One of the best known of the film Merlins is the Merlin of the 1963 animated Disney film The Sword in the Stone, based on T. H. White’s novel of the same name. In the 1967 episode Merlin, the Magician from the TV show The Time Tunnel, Merlin is portrayed by Christopher Cary. The character, played by Nicol Williamson, has a large role in the 1981 film Excalibur. Laurence Naismith appears as Merlyn in the film version of the musical play Camelot (based on T. H. White’s The Once and Future King). In the 1998 miniseries Merlin, the protagonist Merlin (played by actor Sam Neill) battled the pagan goddess Queen Mab.

In 1981, the television series Mr. Merlin featured Merlin living undercover in modern-day San Francisco. In 2006 and 2007, the television series Stargate SG-1 used Merlin and Arthurian legend as major plot points. In 2005, Merlin appeared as leader of the Woads of Britton and father to Guinevere in King Arthur. Also in 2007, the film The Last Legion portrayed Merlin (initially called Ambrosinus) as a druid and tutor of both the last Roman Emperor Romulus Augustus Caesar, as well as of his son Arthur.

In 1985, Merlin was portrayed in the arcade game Gauntlet (arcade game). His role in the game series continued until Gauntlet 4 for the Sega Genesis. Merlin is also featured in the mythology of DC Comics, often in association with the demon character Etrigan. As a result, he has appeared in various animated series, including Justice League and Batman: The Brave and the Bold.

In 2005 Merlin appeared in the British animated series King Arthur’s Disasters where he was voiced by Matt Lucas. BBC’s version of Merlin, as played by Colin Morgan.

In 2008, the BBC created a television series called Merlin, where a young adult Merlin portrayed by Colin Morgan attempts to help Arthur (Bradley James) become king. Merlin was the protagonist of the 2008 fantasy film Merlin and the War of the Dragons. The 1989 Doctor Who episode Battlefield suggests that Arthurian legend in our world is influenced by actual events in a parallel world, and that the Doctor is himself Merlin.

In the 2010 film The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, modern day New Yorker David Stutler, played by Jay Baruchel, discovers he is the last descendant of Merlin, portrayed by James A. Stephens, and is trained as a sorcerer by Balthazar Blake, portrayed by Nicolas Cage, a former student of the great wizard, so that he may ultimately do battle with Merlin’s old nemesis Morganna, played by Alice Krige.In the 2011 TV series Camelot, Merlin was played by Joseph Fiennes. Ashley Cowie, Scottish author, historian, and archaeologist, and his team search the U.K. for treasures said to have been hidden away by Merlin in the 5th episode of season 1’s “Legend Quest”.[18] A main belt asteroid is named Merlin in honour of the legendary wizard. Merlin is a character in the MMO role-playing games Wizard101 (under the alias of Merle Ambrose, a take on the name Merlin Ambrosius) and RuneScape. In the role-playing game Magic and Mayhem, Merlin is the game’s final antagonist.

Source:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Merlin

You can also check out 21 lessons of Merlyn, The Lost Books of Merlyn, The Deep Teachings of Merlyn by: Douglas Monroe

.