The Pagan Next Door/#givingtuesday

She paints her nails according to magical correspondences,

jeweled-toned extensions of Goddess finger tips.

Her ritual garb consists of the sweat pants without the holes,

the ones that don’t camel-toe,

with the silver stitching down the length of the legs for the Moon Lady.

She stands out there, in the sunshine day,

picking out her gemstone collection

from the gravel the trailer park owner dumped 3 days ago.

Granite and quartz, bits of mica and moonstone,

go in her pockets, making the fleece stretch and bulge.

Metaphysical isn’t in her vocabulary,

and the concept of a whole store of it is for faraway Asheville,

but she finds her supplies each week at the flea market stall

amongst the vape liquids and rolling papers

and raids the gas station condiment bar for all the rest.

On the hood of the Buick that barely runs

She forms the shape of her ex from canned biscuit dough

Bobble Buddy Christ and the Hula Girl grin from the dashboard.

They give you extra at the food pantry if you got Jesus on your side–

Even if they question the blasphemous example.

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Smudged with kerosene fumes and Misty smoke,

liberally libating from a 40 oz Bud,

She whispers to the poppet,

“Shit me on child support, mother fucker!”

before she feeds it to his new girl friend’s dog next door.

On this #GivingTuesday, The Barbed Pentacle would like to suggest that you give to one of the non-profit organizations that we enjoy and support:

COYOTE:  Call Off Your Old Tired Ethics works to reform the laws in the US concerning sex workers so that the laws are more fair, ethical, and promote a safer working environment.

ACLU:  The American Civil Liberties Union works to fight any instance that your civil liberties, as protected by the Constitution of the US and its amendments, are violated.

NORML:  The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws works to reform the laws in the US concerning marijuana and its derivatives and to completely legalize it.  Over the last decade, this organization has made great progress, but there is still a long way to go.

LLL:  The Lady Liberty League is sponsored by Circle Sanctuary and is dedicated to giving assistance to Pagans and Heathens who are facing Freedom of Religion issues.  LLL will help you when many other organizations will not.

Circle Military Ministries:   Circle Military Ministries is sponsored by Circle Sanctuary and gives religious, legal, and material support to Pagan and Heathen service men and women, veterans, and their families.  All of their services are free of charge, which is why financial and volunteer support is needed.

The Wild Hunt:  The Wild Hunt is the foremost Pagan and Heathen news agency at this time.  They actively work to legitimatize reporting on Nature-based religions as well as curate an accurate and unbiased media network.

Witchvox: Who hasn’t found a group via the Witches’ Voice?  Although I have to say that I’m a little dismayed that their article standards have been lowered some what in the last couple of years, they are still a networking and learning database that is a cornerstone of our community and should be supported.

Local Food Banks:  Make sure to donate food, money, and other resources to your local food bank whenever you can.  In one of the world’s richest countries, nobody should be going hungry, and most of all, nobody deserves to starve.  Starvation is an awful, slow death.  Besides, somebody in your circle probably depends heavily on a food bank/pantry near you.

Paying the Bills, Giveaways, Announcements……

Reserve your spot now!!!!!


Make sure to mention me, Sparrow Brown, in the subscription comments so that I can get paid!  Make sure to check out my column and articles in the December issue!

 


 

 

The Krampusnacht Party is Dec. 5, 9:30pm EST!  https://www.facebook.com/events/448335095359184/

EdenFantasys

 

 

 

All Tied Up, Part 1: Chastity or Bondage?

“Next and lastly I present the cords. They are of use to bind the sigils of the art, also the material basis. Also they are necessary in the oath.” –Gardnerian Book of Shadows, 1st degree initiation

The Cingulum, which is Latin for “girdle”, is a piece of clothing/tool that in our present day is rarely seen on Pagans.  It is typically a rope of some fiber and color that is worn around the waist.  Sure, Gardnerians still proudly wear them, but most Pagans are not even in traditions that bestow them any more.  This is a shame, because cingulums, also sometimes called “witch’s cords”, can be a lot of fun and quite useful.

Praecinge me, Domine, cingulo puritatis, et exstingue in lumbis meis humorem libidinis; ut maneat in me virtus continentia et castitatis.

Gird me, O Lord, with the girdle of purity, and extinguish in me all evil desires, that the virtue of chastity may abide in me. –Catholic Vestment Prayer

Wiccans are not the only ones to wear cingulums.  Originally the word was used to describe the belt that Roman soldiers wore.

Then it was tied on by the Catholic Church to describe the rope that monks wear around their waists.  I called and emailed a variety of different monks at Belmont Abbey, a local monastery, and no one would ever respond to my requests for an interview.

I guess my soul just isn’t worth saving.  It’s a pity because I can really rock a Catholic school girl outfit!  According to several different Internet sources, the Catholic cingulum is supposed to remind the monks of their vow of chastity and aid them in remaining pure and celibate.  Not exactly how a cingulum is used Wicca.

“Learn of the spirit that goeth with burdens that have not honour, for ’tis the spirit that stoopeth the shoulders and not the weight. Armour is heavy, yet it is a proud burden and a man standeth upright in it. Limiting and constraining any of the senses serves to increase the concentration of another. Shutting the eyes aids the hearing. So the binding of the initiate’s hands increases the mental perception, while the scourge increaseth the inner vision. So the initiate goeth through it proudly, like a princess, knowing it but serves to increase her glory. But this can only be done by the aid of another intelligence and in a circle, to prevent the power thus generated being lost. Priests attempt to do the same with their scourgings and mortifications of the flesh. But lacking the aid of bonds and their attention being distracted by their scourging themselves and what little power they do produce being dissipated, as they do not usually work within a circle, it is little wonder that they oft fail. Monks and hermits do better, as they are apt to work in tiny cells and coves, which in some way act as circles. The Knights of the Temple, who used mutually to scourge each other in an octagon, did better still; but they apparently did not know the virtue of bonds and did evil, man to man. But perhaps some did know? What of the Church’s charge that they wore girdles or cords?” –Gardnerian Book of Shadows, Of the Ordeal of the Magical Art

Sometimes the cord is the length of the person’s measure, which is the person’s height.  This practice is more symbolic than practical, and it refers to the myth of the Fates who would measure out a person’s life span and then cut it for death.  When the cord is a person’s measure, it is usually used in some version of an initiation, and the initiate is usually tied up in some form.   Sometimes the cord is 9 feet in length, which serves the practical purpose of aiding a witch in being able to cast a circle in the traditional circumference.  Cingulums can also denote a group member’s status or rank, or recognize an achievement or rite of passage.

Cingulums can be a lot of fun.  It’s an interesting mind fuck to be tied up with your measure during ritualistic sex or binding magic.  If you don’t have a cingulum, or if you want to create a cingulum for you or somebody else for a particular purpose, here’s how:

Materials

Yarn of various colors

Scissors

Tape (optional)

Unsharpened pencil or stick

Extra set of hands

Procedure

First decide the number of strands and colors that you want in your cingulum and whether your cingulum will be 9 feet or the length of your measure.  For a 9-foot cingulum, cut 19 feet strands of yarn.  For a cingulum that is the length of your measure, cut your yarn so that it is your height doubled plus a few extra inches.  Tie one end of your yarn strands to something sturdy and stationary, like a chair, and tie the other ends to a pencil or stick.  You can also tape the ends instead of tying them.  Now slowly back away from the stationary point until your yarn strands are pulled taunt.  Twist the strands deosil (clockwise) until the strands are wound tight.  If it starts to kink, then it’s time for the next step.  Now have your extra set of hands hold your cord in the middle while you bring your end of the cord to the end tied to the stationary point.  While the middle is still being held by the extra set of hands, slide the ends off of the pencil and untie the ends from the stationary point.  Tie both sets of ends together.  Now have the extra set of hands let go of the cord.  Your cord should be twisted around itself like a piece of rope and ready to wear.

Have fun, and remember that bondage should be tight but not so tight that it cuts off circulation, and bondage should never be done on anyone under the legal age of consent.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

These folks caught the irony of the post:

Mystic Artisanshttps://www.facebook.com/mysticartisans

Passion And Soulhttp://passionandsoul.com/

Knotjokin Rope Floggershttp://www.knotjokin.etsy.com

Tonia Brown:  www.thebackseatwriter.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

Massaging the Moon

In the spirit of the Mabon (the fruit harvest) and the Harvest Moon, we’re going to explore ways to harvest sexual fruits in the bedroom.  Sex and fruit have been linked from the beginning of time.  Look at a plum and a naked woman.  Is that a banana in your pocket, or are you just happy to see me?  See where this juice is running?  And it’s not only the visuals of fruits that invoke sexual thoughts in humans, it’s also the textures of the flesh, the taste, and the aromas.  Erotic Sensations has launched a new line of edible, fruity massage oils just in time for the fruit harvest: http://eroticsensations.us/index.php?main_page=index&cPath=5.  These economically priced non-staining, latex free, oil free ”oils” are good for massages or lubrication and are made from a vegetable base with no sugar added!

Personal and couple massage is a perfect way to celebrate and take advantage of the full moon and its energy.  To take advantage of the moon’s energy, make sure that the massage takes place near a window or sky light where the moon’s light is streaming in or have the massage take place outside under the moon.  As you stroke and knead, draw the moon’s energy into yourself and let it flow into you (for personal) or your partner through your fingers and palms.  Ritual massage is good for energy work, healing, and sex magic.  Adding in scented or flavored massage oils adds an interesting magical layer.

Erotic Sensations currently offers seven different flavors for your ritual needs.  As you massage with these oils, the oils will warm up when friction is applied by rubbing or heat up instantly when you blow on them (just think of the sensual possibilities there!).

Banana:  This scent is good for any working dealing with male or solar energy.  Bananas also represent the desire to give up material possessions.  As you massage with the oils, visualize being comfortable and happy with less possessions and clutter in your or your partner’s life.

Cherry: The scent of cherries is wonderful for doing personal massage work to attract suitors, particularly females.  It’s also good for aiding in divination, a traditional activity at the full moon.  See if you can devise a method of divination using cherry massage oil and your partner’s reaction to certain massage techniques or the way his or her muscles react to your touch.

Peach: This massage oil is good for work dealing with love (yourself, your partner, or others), spiritual fertility, and wishes.  If you feel a little empty or a little spiritually unfulfilled, spread a little peach massage oil on something nice to fill yourself up.  As you massage yourself, ask the Lord and Lady to come and plant the spiritual seeds with in you that you want to grow.

Passion Fruit:  This oil should be a no-brainer just based on its name.  Besides passion, passion fruit massage oil is good for winning love through a good massage or strengthening a friendship with good firm strokes.

Pina Colada:  The magic of pina colada massage oil is that it combines the properties of pineapple (which Erotic Sensations also sells separately) and coconut.  Both pineapples and coconuts are associated with chastity, so this oil is particularly good if you’re abstaining from partnered sex for a while and need a little fun.  Coconut massage oil works well too if you’re giving a massage to rid somebody or yourself of impurities or if you’re trying to massage into a person or yourself some wisdom.  Pineapple massage oil is good to take with you if you and your honey are going to Vegas or some other casino mecca since it helps attract prosperity and luck (or it could be used as a good way to relax before a job interview).  The oil is also good for protection.  Going on a long trip and you’re worried about leaving your partner all alone?  Massage a protection spell into their flesh with pineapple massage oil.

Strawberries: Strawberries are notorious for being thought to be aphrodisiacs.  This massage oil is good if you are doing a self-massage to have good luck in love or romance, or if you’re giving a massage to a partner that you think you may want to pursue further.

Not sure how to properly give a massage?  These web articles can help out:

http://www.lhj.com/health/stress/relaxation-techniques/how-to-give-a-killer-massage/  (I love the lesbian drawings–because we all know that’s what they are!)

http://www.redbookmag.com/love-sex/advice/sexy-touch-man

http://tantraecstasy.blogspot.com/2011/04/how-to-give-erotic-massage.html

 If you’re interested in pursuing erotically-charged magical massage, but you just don’t have the money right now to order supplies, enter this month’s giveaway: http://barbedpentacle.com/giveaways/.  There’s a set of massage oils up for grabs, as well as a wonderful set of bath supplies from Erotic Sensations.
Have the oils but need help getting in the right frame of mind for magic?  These posts should help:

http://barbedpentacle.com/2012/03/squeeze-my-melons-and-plow-my-furrow-poetry-supplement/

http://barbedpentacle.com/words-to-stroke-to/

These folks love to be massaged with fruity edible oils:

Erotic Sensations http://eroticsensations.us/

Quadrivium Supplies  http://www.quadrivium-supplies.com

Tonia Brown www.thebackseatwriter.com

Chris Eagle Music http://chriseaglemusic.weebly.com/

The Geeky Kink Event http://thegeekykinkevent.com/
Passion And Soul: http://passionandsoul.com/

You sucked too much helium, chipmunk!

Balloons are happy objects. They grace our homes at birthday parties and celebrations. They call our attention to great sales. They announce new babies born into a neighborhood. The shape of the traditional balloon calls to mind the blessed globes of the Venus of Willendorf and other fertility icons. For some people, balloons have inspired compassion, obsession, and kink. These folks are called “Looners,” and they fall into two camps: the poppers and the non-poppers.

While both groups revel in the deliciousness of balloons’ shapes, colors, and sexiness, the poppers get a great thrill that often teeters and falls over into orgasm when they pop a balloon. For them, the balloon’s ultimate purpose is to pop. The non-poppers show more compassion for the balloons and tend to personify them to the extent that they’ll often mourn when a balloon is popped. I personally am not a Looner, but if I were, I would be a popper. I can see how the anticipation and the loud noise can ignite certain emotions.

Here are some links that will expand your looner knowledge:  http://channel.nationalgeographic.com/channel/taboo/videos/whats-a-looner/

http://www.loonernetwork.com/splash.php

Sexually speaking, balloon sex could be interesting. It’s not something I have ever tried, but I’m really intrigued. Genitalia for both sexes can be made from the balloons that clowns use to make balloon animals. Here’s a link on making a pocket pussy from water balloons:http://www.homemade-sex-toys.com/balloon-sex-bundle.html.  If you’re interested in free looner porn, check out this site: http://carefreeblowjobs.net/

Magically speaking, balloons have a lot of possibilities. First, you have what I like to call “Up, up and away” spells. These spells involve helium balloons. As with any magic, try to coordinate your correspondences for best results. In this case, you can coordinate colors and shapes (and sometimes messages) toward your intent. With “Up, up and away” spells, once you say your spell intention, tie an object that you either literally want out of your life or tie an object that represents something you want out of your life to the balloon, and you let it go. If the object is heavy, you’ll need several balloons. Make sure to release your balloons away from trees and power lines.

You can also adapt this type of spell to send messages/blessings out into the world or to specific people. Instead of your intent being “take out of my life,” the intent would be “take to the world” or “take to person X.” While these types of spells are fun, and this method of dispersion is used by all types groups, including religious groups to spread propaganda, these spells are not environmentally sound. The balloons, once they fall to the ground, contribute to litter, and balloon litter is dangerous to wildlife who may eat the balloon or get tangled in the string.

The second type of balloon magic is the “you made me wet” magic. Here again, color correspondences can be used to boost your magic. This type of magic can be used as a twist on anointing, or it can be worked into ritual in other ways. Fill biodegradable water balloons with water and a corresponding oil or ritual tea. If your purpose is to anoint, then recite your anointing words as you fill the balloons so that they become filled with your intent. Then throw the balloon at the person, people, or objects to be anointed. This method works really well for big objects like houses. If you don’t want to throw a balloon directly at a person, throw the balloon at the person’s feet. The balloon will still break upon impact with the ground, and the water and anointing material will spray up onto the person.

The third type of balloon spell is the “pop me” spells. With this type of spell work, take regular balloons that are color coordinated and fill them with air and herbs, unlit incense, oils, and/or coordinated by color and shape glitter and confetti. As you fill the balloons, fill them with your intent as well. When it’s time to release the energy from you spell, pop the balloon(s). One variant of this ritual can be turned into a balloon dance.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fWy_4jDoUZM&feature=related

Multiple spell balloons, either with different components of your spell in them or complete balloons replicated for greater energy, can be attached all over your body. As you dance, more energy is gradually built up for your spell. When it’s time to start releasing the energy, you can start popping the balloons one at a time in traditional burlesque fashion, or if you’re doing this ritual with a partner or a group, then they can pop the balloons.

A twist on this type of spell is the balloon animal/shape. As with the above spell ideas, clown balloons can be filled with spell material and then twisted into a totem animal shape or a shape that corresponds to your spell. Another variant on this idea is calling the elements with balloons. Using the appropriate colors for your tradition (in my tradition it’s yellow=East, red=South, blue=West, and green=North), each quarter caller can fill his/her balloon with air as they welcome in the element. When it’s time to release the element, all you have to do is pop the balloon and say “thank you”.

Balloons have lots of applications for magic and um, other activities. As with anything, be responsible and think about how your spell method may impact the environment.

These folks get a rise from popping balloons:

Quadrivium Supplies  http://www.quadrivium-supplies.com

Erotic Sensations http://eroticsensations.us/

Tonia Brown www.thebackseatwriter.com

Chris Eagle Music http://chriseaglemusic.weebly.com/

The Geeky Kink Event http://thegeekykinkevent.com/
Passion And Soul: http://passionandsoul.com/

Nails and other detritus: A Pagan Service Announcement

The proper disposal of nail clippings and other personal detritus has become a major problem in the Pagan community.  Improper disposal of personal detritus can lead to you being placed in a jar on somebody’s shelf, having a poppet made of you, or being framed for a crime you didn’t commit.  You don’t want a poppet made of you, do you?

No, I didn’t think so, nor do you want to be singing the song, “But that’s not really my DNA” to the police.  They never believe you.  Not only is improper disposal of personal detritus gross, but it’s irresponsible.  Personal detritus is the easiest way for another magically inclined person to have control over you.

There are several proper ways to dispose of personal detritus.  First of all, make sure to collect all your nail clippings, loose hair (even from shower drains), pieces of dead skin or scabs, and boogers for proper disposal.  If you make this a daily habit, then the threat of someone controlling you will be greatly diminished.

Now it’s time to dispose of the detritus.  You can burn the waste and scatter the ashes.  You can bury the waste.  You can flush the waste.  My favorite is to let it all fly out of the car window as I’m speeding down the road.

To summarize, get your detritus out of your enemies’ hands and back to nature where it can decompose.
These folks always properly dispose of nail clippings:

Squeeze My Melons and Plow My Furrow, Part 7: Guerrilla Gardening, Squatters’ Circles, and Urban Foraging

As anyone who has gardened knows, gardening is dirty work.  It’s sweaty, dirt gets under your nails, your hair gets messed up.  Sounds sort of like sex!  For me, gardening is a very sensual act.  You’re plowing furrows and fingering seeds into the warm, moist earth.

Gardening is also a very magical act.  The act lends itself well to sympathetic magic.  You can imbue your desires or intent into the seed and then plant it.  As it grows, so too should your intent or desire.
Magic can also be added to gardening by following the old traditions of planting by the signs.  There are two systems to take into consideration when planting by the signs.

System One is to plant by the phases of the moon.  New moon to Full moon is good for planting above ground crops and seeds and for digging new beds.  The Full moon is best for harvesting.  The Waning moon is best for weeding and pruning.  Root crops should be planted in the dark of the moon.  System One is the simplest system.

System Two is to plant by where the moon is in the Zodiac.  It’s more complicated than System One and requires the use of a Farmer’s Almanac.  System One and Two can be combined together, but it’s sometimes difficult to find compatible days. Just like with most magical workings, timing is important, and folks, especially Old Timers, will swear that plants do better when planted at the appropriate time.  If you can’t wait to dig into magical gardening, there are lots of good books out there, particularly by Kate West and Ellen Dugan.

What should you do in the garden when the moon’s in Scorpio?

For many people, myself included, gardening space is at a premium because they live in an urban or suburban environment.  Container, balcony, and rooftop gardening are all wonderful options, but so is Guerrilla Gardening.

Guerrilla Gardening is a concept that started in London to fill the empty, arable spaces in the city.  Some of the land was city owned, but most of it was vacant private lots.  The movement has now grown worldwide.

Except for the subversive nature of it, guerrilla gardening is not much different from regular gardening.  Both Wikihow and Guerrillagardening.org have step-by-step guides and tips for beginners.

Seed bombs are a common guerrilla gardener’s tool. Made from seeds, soil, and water, the bombs are made to be nonchalantly tossed into vacant lots and will burst open on contact.  They work best if they are made from seeds that do not have to be covered by soil to germinate.  Germination requirements can usually be found on the back of seed packages. Seed bombs are perfect for garden spells, especially if you are without a garden space.  First, figure out the proper timing for the spell.  Then, imbue your seeds with your intent and desires.  Your seeds should be representative of your intent.  To ensure this, consult correspondence charts or a language of flowers guide.  More than one type of seed can be added to the bomb to create a complex and longer lasting spell.  If you want, writing a chant to say while you make the bomb and at launch time will strengthen your magic.  Now choose your location. Ideally, it should be a location near something related to your spell intent or near you.

My god looks like Che!

When it’s time, travel to your launch site, and on the way invoke the God and Goddess to aid your seeds and desires to germinate and grow.  Now throw!  If you wrote a chant for the spell and you pass the site often, recite your chant every time you go by.  The more you put your intent out to the Universe, the more likely the Universe is to make it a reality.

In a way, guerrilla gardens are squatters.

Real squatters–not her–use unoccupied land without the owner’s permission.  Squatting is common everywhere, and every place has different rules about it.

Depending on your locality’s  laws, you may be able to make a guerrilla garden into an outdoor worship area.  Many urban and suburban Pagans don’t worship outdoors because they don’t have a piece of land to worship on.  Some Pagans utilize parks, but many don’t because of the number of people milling about.  However, with some strategic planting, lots of invisibility thoughts, and good site scouting, circle squatting is a much better option than the park.  Before you start your outdoor circle, make sure to research the laws in your area about squatting.  While you’re of course going to claim ignorance if a cop stops you, it’s always best to know beforehand where you stand legally.

Vacant lots and other “wild” urban and suburban places are also excellent for foraging and gleaning.  Foraging is when you gather edibles from the wild.  This can either be done along the marginally green areas

or in the wilds of the park.

There many good field guides available specifically geared toward foragers.  Make sure to get one that’s specific to your area.  Some easy foraging foods are fruits, dandelion greens, Queen Anne’s Lace tubers, wild strawberries, and nuts.  If you’re not sure if the plants you’re foraging from have been sprayed with chemicals, then leave them be.  Treehugger.com has an informative guide for beginner foragers.

Ruth gleaned a rich husband!

Gleaning is similar to foraging, except that it occurs in a cultivated setting.  Gleaners collect the produce that has been left behind by farmers and gardeners.  The produce may be slightly bruised, wind fallen, or simply left by a harvester.  Following old hospitality traditions, many farmer and gardeners will purposely leave behind a portion of their harvest.  There are many aid agencies and food banks that rely on armies of foragers to harvest the extras for the hungry.  However, there’s no reason why you can’t harvest for yourself.  Many cities now have websites and Facebook pages that have up-to-the minute information about where to get wind fall apples or forgotten tomatoes.  Seriouseats.com is a good starting point for finding free food in your area.

Good food doesn’t have to be expensive, nor is a lack of land a good excuse for not growing your own food. Food grown by you tastes better, is healthier, and it puts you closer to the God and Goddess and their holy union.

Sub-Shop.com: http://bit.ly/subshop
Tonia Brown: www.thebackseatwriter.com
Erotic Sensations:  eroticsensations.us


Blessed Be Thy Feet, Supplement B: Pedicure for the Sole

Our dead cells not only contain the physical memories of the time they were a part of our bodies via the DNA of which they are made, but they also contain a psychic memory.  Both positive and negative emotions, memories, and energy are stored in dead cells, particularly dead skin and nail cells.  The dead skin on the soles of our feet probably store the most psychic build up.  To combat this, treat your feet to a magical pedicure.  If possible, do this with a partner so that you can fully relax (and then return the favor).  However, this is also a good solitary ritual.
Set up a relaxing ritual space in an area where you will be able to soak your feet.  Call in your deities and elementals as you would for any other ritual.  Breathe deeply, and at each step of the ritual make sure to think about your intent.
If you do not already have pedicure items, visit your local pharmacy or dollar store.  Ritual tools, in this case pedicure items, should not be expensive.   If your budget is super limited, only get nail clippers, a nail file, and clear fingernail polish.  If you have a little bit more money, invest in a foot file, pumice stone, or a Pediegg.
Step 1–Removing negativity
Start by clipping your toe nails.  As you clip, say one thing for each nail that you are letting go of.  After you’re done, collect the pairings and save them to bury after the ritual.  There are many traditions about what to do with nail pairings, but giving them back to the Earth keeps them out of the wrong hands and is easy.  Plus, the earth is a good neutralizing element for the negativity you are removing from your life.  Then file your toe nails.  As you do this, focus on how you can file away any rough edges in yourself that may be getting snagged on the fabric of your life.  Finally, take your Pediegg (or you can use your nail file in a pinch), and file away the dead skin on your soles in counterclockwise circles.  In most traditions, widdershins or counterclockwise is the direction for banishing.  Think about removing all the negativity that your feet may have accumulated as the dead cells are filed away.  If you wish, you can chant. 
Step 2–Healing
In a large basin or other foot soaking vessel, prepare a foot soak.  The easiest foot soak is warm water with Epsom salts.  However, any salt will do.  Don’t spend money on this step.  Just use what you have in your kitchen.  Salt and mint is a good revitalizing foot soak.  Salt and rosemary or tea tree oil is an excellent anti fungal soak.  Salt and oatmeal is good for soothing itchy skin.   Be creative and experiment. Don’t be afraid to use aromatherapy.  As you soak your feet, meditate on healing any ailments you are experiencing physically as well as emotionally/spiritually.  Envision the warmth from the soak moving up your body to heal and strengthen you.  Finish this step by rubbing lotion on your feet.  Any lotion that you want to use will work (if you don’t have lotion, you can use cooking oil, butter, or Crisco).  Rub the lotion on the top and bottom of your feet in a clockwise or deosil motion since you are attracting healing into your life.
Step 3–Attracting Magic
Now comes the fun part.  Using color magic, choose the color of nail polish that will help you attract the good things you want/need in your life.  If you need money, choose green.  If you are a student, choose yellow.  If you are not really into nail polish or you can only afford to buy one shade, go with clear.  Just like a white candle or a quartz crystal, clear nail polish can be used to represent any color.  As you paint each toe, envision yourself walking towards what you want to attract to your life.  If you are looking for money, see yourself walking into work and later walking into a bank to deposit the money.  
To end the ritual, give thanks to your Deities and close up your circle.  Once your nails dry, don’t forget to bury your nail pairings.

The Scourge Part 1

“The Goddess’ scourge is light—usually.”

           A scourge by any other name is still a scourge.  A scourge is the name given to what is basically a many-tailed whip used in Wicca.  People in the scene often call it a flogger, or if it has knots, a cat, and to outsiders it’s a whip, but all these boil down to a scourge.  According to Merriam-Webster, the word first appears in its current form in the 13th century and is originally derived from the Latin word corrigia, which means “thong” or “whip”.    It’s a ritual tool that many Wiccans either don’t own, don’t use, don’t understand, or have purely for show.
            Scourges and other whip like implements have been associated with religion forever. 
In Ancient Egypt, Osiris was often depicted with a crook and a flail, symbols of authority but also symbols of agriculture.  These symbols of agriculture could sympathetically translate to virility symbols.  There is more about the flail (which looks an awful lot like a scourge) in the “Ritual” section of this blog.
The Ancient Romans used scourges, whips, and switches sympathetically in their magic and rituals. These implements were seen as being phallic and were used in fertility rites, primarily Lupercalia.  According to a Hellenic expert, while Lupercalia is primarily a Roman festival, it has its origins in Ancient Greece. Originally male adolescents in Arkadia would reenact the feast of Lycaon every year. At the original feast, Lycaon prepared a feast for the Olympian gods that included some human flesh, perhaps from one of Lycaon’s male relatives. This so enraged Zeus, that he struck Lycaon’s house
with a thunderbolt and Lycaon turned into a wolf.
At the Arkadian reenactment, the teenagers would gather on a mountaintop and
partake of a meal of animal entrails. However, among the animal guts was hidden one piece of human intestine. If a participant ate this juicy morsel, he would turn into a wolf and was only able to become human again if he refrained from eating human meat for nine years. Another way that the boys could achieve this lupine transformation was to swim across a special mountain pool. Once again, after nine years, they could regain their human form.  

 

This tradition traveled to Rome via Hermes’ son, Euandros, who exported the cult of Pan Lykaios and the festival of Lykaia to Italy. This festival later became the festival of Lupercalia, which is described in the opening lines of Shakespeare’s play, Julius Caesar.

Once the wolf festival was transported to Rome and became Lupercalia, many
different stories and deities became associated with the celebration.  To honor Pan, two goats and a dog were annually sacrificed. The dog was sacrificed because they were sacred for their ability to protect flocks and because Pan raised hounds.
           Skin from the sacrificed goats was used for the flails that the Lupercalia runners would whip the female spectators with. It was believed that through this aggressive behavior Pan would bless the ladies with fertility. 

 

 

In Julius Caesar, Caesar tells Antony:
Forget not, in your speed, Antonius,
To touch Calpurnia; for our elders say,
The barren, touched in this holy chase,
Shake off their sterile curse.
Act I, Scene 2

Sadomasochism, Pain, and Wicca/Paganism

Beardsley’s Frontispiece to “A Full and True Account….”
If you’re reading this blog, then I assume that you at least know what S&M or BDSM is.  If you are looking for a how-to in terms of technique, some of the following books may be helpful:
Sensuous Magic 2 Ed: A Guide to S/M for Adventurous Couples by Patrick Califia
SM 101: A Realistic Introduction by Jay Wiseman
Screw the Roses, Send Me the Thorns: The Romance and Sexual Sorcery of Sadomasochism   by Philip Miller and Molly Devon
There are tons of books out there on the topic of basic S&M and S&M from all angles, but just like books on Paganism, some are good and some are fluff. 

 When the idea for this blog originally came to me, I, of course like most folks, felt sure that my ideas were fresh and original.  Well, there are few fresh and original ideas out there.  As I come across other people’s take on my “fresh and original” ideas, I’ll post and review them.

            S&M and the pain that is its intended purpose and by product can be related to Pagan/Wiccan practices, ideas, and motifs in many different ways:

·        Sadomasochism as a mystery tradition

·        Pain as an initiatory ordeal

·        Pain as sacrifice

·        Pain as meditation

·        Pain as a drug

·        Sadomasochism as “all acts of love and pleasure”

·        Sadomasochism as ritual

·        Sadomasochism as a vehicle for enacting the drama of myths

·        Sadomasochism as a healing vehicle

·        Sadomasochism as sympathetic magic

·        Pain as a purifier

All of these things, of course, bring us closer to our deities and our understanding of them.  I believe that when we orgasm we may be the closest to the pure energy force of the divine that we can experience here on Earth.  Using S&M in conjunction with sex and magic can enhance that feeling.