MESSAGES FOR FEBRUARY 2021
Litha is Midsummer, the summer solstice, when the sun's power is at its height. Bonfires are lit to celebrate the shortest night on Midsummer's eve. This is the time of peak growth, as the long summer days warm the earth. It is a time of magical potency, drawing down the radiant strength of the sun to empower any undertaking.
Meaning: Take advantage of this time of empowerment to do work that will enhance your goals, both magical and mundane. Your personal charisma is strong, and your fiery warmth will attract others. Community connections thrive as you share common ideals.
Reversed: Something or someone has been dampening your inner fire. Look for its cause and work to remove barriers to empowerment
Key Words: Power, radiance, longevity.
Affirmation: I am filled with radiant and joyful power.
Challenge: What is your greatest strength?
Winter solstice brings the longest night and the shortest day. It is the depth of winter in terms of the light, though colder says may still be ahead. The kindling of Yule fires, candles and festive lights affirm the spirit's faith even in the darkest times. It is an affirmation that the sun will return. Holy and mistletoe, ancient symbols of eternal life, add their magic to the season.
Meaning: Tend the flame of your spirit, and do not give in to depression or despair. The dark times are temporary. Your faith is being tested. Know that you are eternally loved, even in the most barren and bleak seasons of your life. The light will return, always.
Reversed: You may not feel like turning your negativity around or finding your faith. Sometimes it's fine to just sit with your gloom. But don't let it go on too long.
Key Words: Faith, comfort, light.
Affirmation: My inner flame burns brightly.
Challenge: What awaits you in the deepest dark?
The king of all trees, the oak is a symbol of stability, strength and patience. The oak sinks its roots deep, while its majestic branches reach for the stars. It is a sacred tree, slow-growing, connected to the people of the past and to generations to come. To learn from oak-0wisdomw is to slow down and allow time for deepening. Our human work changes rapidly, but the oak endures.
Meaning: Give more attention to the truly important things in your life, and let the trivial concerns drop away. Do not worry or stress over small matters, or waste time with petty dramas. Let go of any sense of urgency. You have plenty of time.
Reversed: Something that you thought would past has proven to be less enduring than you hoped. There is no blame for this, it is just the nature of the situation. Let it go.
Key Words: Patience, endurance, strength.
Affirmation: I draw my strength from the earth.
Challenge: What are your highest aspirations?
Faeries, gnomes and elemental beings of all sorts share the earth with us and are part of its magical essence. You might catch a glimpse of them from the corner of your eye or simply sense their presence in some secluded spot. Seek them where their world and our world meet: amongst the roots of ancient trees, on the misty mountaintops, and at the edge of the sea.
Meaning: There are helpers willing to pitch in and give you the assistance you need on a cause or project that is dear to their heart as well. Look around you, let your need be known, and welcome help when it is offered.
Reversed: Something small that you may have overlooked could be undermining your progress. Pay attention to details.
Key Words: Help, community, details.
Affirmation: I give thanks for helpful friends.
Challenge: What elemental beings do you sense near your home?
Whether a traditional witch's cauldron or a simple kitchen kettle, the combination of water (emotion) with fire (action) transforms and energizes. when brewing a healing tea or a magic potion, the practitioner gathers ingredients with care, adding focus and intention with each one. Turning up the heat gets things moving, and extracts the potent powers needed to complete the task.
Meaning: It's time to light a fire under the situation and get things bubbling! Think about what you want to accomplish, what you wish and hope for. Then make a solid plan of action to take the first steps toward that desire.
Reversed: Turn down the heat and take a break. There is danger of burnout from too much activity. When too many tasks are taken on at once, none of them is done well.
Key Words: Activity, intensity, energy.
Affirmation: I am bubbling with intention and energy.
Challenge: How can you use magic in this situation?
Animal friends have their own wild magic, as well as instincts that ensure survival. A witch's familiar is a soul companion, consulted on all matters, both magical and mundane. Whether that familiar is a cat, as shown here, or other animal, bird or reptile, the bonds are true through this lifetime and beyond. To share your life with a familiar is to access your own animal nature as well.
Meaning: Your connection to nature is strong now. Pat attention to your animal companions, both in the flesh (and fur and feather) and on the etheric planes. A totem animal may become known to you, calling forth qualities you have long possessed but not made good use of.
Reversed: Animal instincts are primarily about survival, which can result in nervousness if you are not comfortable with your surroundings. Make sure you are safe and secure.
Key Words: Instinct, nature, companionship.
Affirmation: I embrace my animal nature.
Challenge: What wildness in you is longing to be released?
BOOK OF SHADOWS
A Wiccan book of shadows is a record of rituals, beliefs, prayers and magical lore. While there are published books of shadows, each practitioner will have a personal book as well, for Wicca is a tradition that greatly values individualism and rejects dogma. The book of shadows is a tool, not a set of commandments.
Meaning: This is a time to deepen your knowledge through study, including but not limited to reading. Seek out teachers who will encourage you to think for yourself. Put your study into practice through meaningful rites and spell work.
Reversed: Go back to the basics of your spiritual practice, keeping it very simple, until you are feeling in touch with your essential sacred self.
Key Words: Knowledge, lore, learning.
Affirmation: I walk the path of wisdom.
Challenge: How do you challenge authority?
Beltane (May 1) is the Celtic cross-quarter holy day that welcomes the beginning of summer. The maypole symbolizes the masculine principle of potency entwined with the feminine principle of fertility. To dance around a maypole is to surrender to the delights of love, sensuality and joy. Hawthorn blossoms bedeck the Queen of the May, who represents the Goddess on earht. She unites in love with the God to bring summer's abundant fruitfulness to the world.
Meaning: The ecstasy of passionate union cannot be denied. Listen for what calls to your heart, and give yourself completely to it, whether it is another person, a project, or an adventure.
Reversed: You may be feeling separated from your sensuality, perhaps from negative experiences in the past. Find gentle way to heal old wounds.
Key Words: Celebration, passion, sensuality.
Affirmation: I embrace my passionate nature.
Challenge: How do you feed your senses?
Lughnasadh (August 1) is the Celtic cross-quarter holy day that welcomes the beginning of autumn. The corn is ripe and ready for gathering. At this time of year the Horned God becomes a symbol of sacrifice, the grain cut down for bread and the seeds returned to the earth for next year's harvest. Also known as Lammas, or "loaf-mass," this day is celebrated by the baking and eating of bread in a mindful way, acknowledging its ancient tradition of holiness.
Meaning: In the cycle of life, there must be an offering for blessings bestowed. It is not enough simply to expect to receive, you must also give back. You may need to sacrifice one plan or dream in order to bring another to fruition.
Reversed: Sacrifices must be made willingly if they are to have a spiritual or magical effect. Don't let anyone push you to offer more than you are ready to give.
Key Words: Offering, cycles, sacrifice.
Affirmation: I offer myself at the altar of service.
Challenge: How are you withholding your gifts from the world?
Samhain (October 31) is the Celtic cross-quarter holy day that welcomes the beginning of winter. It is a time when the veil is thin between the worlds fo the seen and the unseen. The ancestors and spirits of the dead are honored; their wisdom and messages are sought. Jack-o-lanterns light the path for those who travel through the veil, and protect against any evil or mischievous spirits that might also be abroad.
Meaning: The ancestors are offering guidance. Watch for unexpected messages in dreams, chance encounters with strangers, or voices whispered on the wind. You have nothing to fear in the dark.
Reversed: Something has spooked you, perhaps on a subconscious level. Do an inner journey to find protective ancestors to help you interpret your fears.
Keywords: Mystery, ancestors, deepening.
Affirmation: I embody the wisdom of my ancestors.
Challenge: What do the spirits of the dad require of you.
The plant world exists in mystical relationship with the human world, each serving the other to heal, nourish and grow. From food to medicine to poison to mind-expansion, plants offer ancient green magic. The mandrake is symbolic of the kinship between mankind and plants, suggesting a common origin - literally, we are one with nature.
Meaning: The earth cries out for our attention and care. Make it part of your spiritual and magical practices to do your part for ecology. Devotion to the Goddess and God demand it, and your chosen spiritual path requires it.
Reversed: Your soul is feeling uprooted. find the place where you are most at home on the earth and stay there until you are again at peace.
Key Words: Ecology, nature, environment.
Affirmation: I am connected to all living things.
Challenge: How do you replenish yourself in nature.
Sacred bird or death and endings, the raven brings the message of time passing. The leaves fall, the nest is empty, and there comes a season for contemplation of loss. The raven's wisdom is that all things must pass, and that clinging to the present is useless. Understanding the cycles of life makes acceptance of change easier to bear, as well as making each moment precious as it passes.
Meaning: There is a time for grieving, and to deny it is to prolong it in many cases. Find a safe time and space to mourn your losses. Then rise above them, as the raven flies, and see the bigger picture, for blessings may accompany loss.
Reversed: Humor helps you gain a sense of perspective. Don't take yourself or the situation too seriously. Seek out reasons to laugh and smile.
Key Words: Endings, cycles, grief.
Affirmation: I accept the lessons of change.
Challenge: How has sorrow served you?