Welcome to Yesterways Order of WiseCraft

Witching my way through the world one day at a time here at Yesterways Cottage, incorporating the ways of old with modern times. Join me as I journey on a spiritual path I call "Yesterways WiseCraft Wicca." Feel free to comment and ask questions -- I'll get back to you, I promise, Witch's honor.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Who Qualifies as an Authority?

Oh what a lovely hot button that one is. Is an authority an elder? Does an elder have to be old? Who has more authority -- someone with years of experience, someone with credentials from college, training programs or workshop attendance hosted by a celebrity, or someone who demonstrates comprehension and knowledge of the subject matter?

Here is my short answer -- An authority is any one with more knowledge than you on a particular topic regardless of age, years of experience, or credentials.

Let me address the questions above, one by each:

  • Is an authority an elder? I'm a firm believer that age alone does not an authority make. I have met very wise young people and very unwise old people.

The Beauty of Being Eclectic -- There is no *One True Way* to be Wiccan

The notion of *one true way*, or OTW as I like to call it for short, is not embraced by Wicca thankfully.  The wonderful thing about following an eclectic path is that no one can tell you that what you do is wrong. Others may wholeheartedly disagree with your choices and practices but the beauty of it is, they can choose to do something different and neither is wrong -- just different. So, unless a person is part of a coven that has a defined tradition, there are no hard and fast rules regarding being a Wiccan.  There are some basic tenants that are part of Wicca that everyone who self identifies will embrace in some form, but after that, the practices are wide and varied.

Widely embraced Wiccan concepts:
  • You believe in a God and Goddess - they may be specific or abstract
  • You revere nature
  • You believe in Harm None

Fashion with a Passion...

Sometimes as we change inwardly, we desire to change outwardly too. However, doing an entire wardrobe makeover all at once can be daunting and quite expense. Don't despair though -- where there is a will, there is a way.

Look at your wardrobe and see what you have -- then try to look at the pieces in ways you never have before. Do you have a tube top style sundress that can be slid down and used as a skirt? Or a skirt that can be slid up to use as a top and then belted? Do you have a traditional strappy or sleeveless summer something that you can layer a sleeved item under? I have a few black and white shirts that I use for this purpose.

OMG! Love these *Senior Moments* on Advanced Style blog!

I am 55 and as much of a *clothes horse* as I have ever been, only with a twist. I'm not interested in blending in, I want to look fun and funky or as I now know, *fly*. And today I found a fantastic blog that has Seniors who definitely fly with funky style. I LOVE it. Check it out! I am subscribing for sure. Maybe I'll become a model. hahaha Not really. But I do love the flare they share.

Advanced Style: http://advancedstyle.blogspot.com/

Bright Blessings and Blessed Be,
Rayven Michaels

Blog Shout Out: Divine Wicca

Follow the journey of a young Wiccan as he sorts out what works for him and what doesn't. Ali provides a unique look at spirituality from a youthful perspective. Check out his blog and be sure to subscribe and follow.


Divine Wicca
Blog: http://divinewicca.blogspot.co.uk/
Page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Divine-Wiccan-Healers/435900426537431?fref=ts
Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/183923785123212/
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC9oMXAzkE_tomBSIayfWBCQ

Bright Blessings and Blessed Be,
Rayven Michaels

Blog Shout Out: Sol Full Living

Sometimes life feels over complicated, we feel lost or broken. Good friend Sol Ess addresses those very issues in his blog Sol Full Living - Simple Life / Rich Rewards. He also has a YouTube channel and he can be found on Google+. Check him out and be sure to follow and subscribe.

Sol Full Living:
Blog: http://solfullliving.blogspot.ca/
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCYGJM8aXrbk5BlY7LIgiIUw

Bright Blessings and Blessed Be,
Rayven Michaels

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Be Wary of Predators and Inappropriateness

If you are thinking of joining a coven or seeking a teacher, I can't stress this enough: Be wary of predators and inappropriateness. The disgusting truth is, there are people in this world with ulterior motives and they learn to say and do whatever it takes to gain your confidence and then twist it for their selfish purposes. Once upon a time, these people were called *confidence men*. This type of person will make themselves shine and look very reputable and knowledgeable so that people will trust them. Once the trust is gained, they have set their hook and they begin to weave their web of horrors.

To any young person I say this - NEVER GO WITH ANYONE ALONE and NEVER GO IN SECRET. I know when you are underage and have parents strongly opposed to involvement in Wicca, the temptation is strong to hide your activities and your associations with others. Please, please, please, do not make clandestine meeting arrangements with others without someone, preferably your parents, truly knowing where you are going. Because the sad thing is, once you have gone off alone, if things go south, it could be too late to help you by the time others are searching for you. In recent months, a young girl was snatched in the street and even with all the info that was had on the kidnapper, finding him 2 hours later was already too late -- in that short time span he had already violated and murdered her.

Friday, March 28, 2014

What is a *Taglock*?

In my previous post

Wicca and Blood, Bodily Fluids and Sacrifice

I mentioned *taglocks* and touched on just one or two things that could be used. However, here is an excellent article on taglocks by Patti Wigington over on PaganWiccan.About.com. You will note in the first part of her article, she does list bodily fluids and other human parts as being *execellent* taglocks. However, WiseCraft Wicca does not incorporate bodily fluids or human parts other than perhaps a fingernail or hair strand. Other than those exceptions, this article gives excellent ideas on what to use as a magickal link or taglock.

Bright Blessings and Blessed Be,
Rayven Michaels

What is a Taglock?

By Patti Wigington

Definition:

In some traditions of magic, you may see the word "taglock" used. A taglock is a magical link to an individual. For example, in poppet magic, you would use a taglock inside the doll to identify the person to be targeted by the spell. Ideally, a good taglock is one that is strongly connected to the individual -- but in a magical emergency, you can use other things as well.

Excellent Taglocks:  (click here for full article)

Wicca and Blood, Bodily Fluids and Sacrifice

Some of the most common myths regarding Wicca revolve around sacrifice and the use of blood in ritual. Sadly, sacrifice was common place at one time, and reference to it can be found in many religious texts, including the Old Testament of the Bible. It was the way of people for centuries to sacrifice animals and even humans. Thankfully, as people became civilized, all those barbaric traditions passed out of common practice. Is it completely gone from today's world? No, there are some religions and magickal traditions that still make use of sacrifice and blood in ritual. However, it is NOT part of Wicca. In fact, the Athame used in ritual work in Wicca is supposed to be a dull blade and that if it should ever draw blood, accidentally or otherwise, it is never to be used again.

Overall, sacrifice or using blood -- and most especially the drinking of blood, are not really part of Wicca. However, because many people on the Wiccan path are *eclectic* Wiccans, they may have taken things from other traditions that do so and incorporated it into their eclectic practice. In these instances, I would personally be of the position that they are a Witch or Pagan that have taken on some Wiccan aspects rather than the other way around. It might seem like semantics to say it that way, but Wicca's most notable principle is *Harm None* and sacrifice and blood use whether drawing it or drinking it, or even worse, secretly inflicting it on others to be ingested isn't really in keeping with the Wiccan Rede. While I can't speak for ALL Wiccans, what I can say with absolute certainty is that sacrifice, blood and other bodily fluids are NOT used in my tradition of WiseCraft Wicca.

Why would anyone have ever used blood or other bodily fluids in the first place? The purpose of blood use in many magickal workings was to create a magickal link or *tag lock* to themselves or another. However, there are many other ways to make that link without using blood, or any other bodily fluid for that matter. A strand of hair or a finger nail clipping is all that is necessary. Why would a person want to make a magickal link to themselves or someone else? Perhaps they are creating a poppet to represent themselves or another person they are working magick for. This could be for any number of reasons, healing, to place it in a crystal grid for long term and continual receipt of energy, to symbolize some undesirable aspect of oneself or another (remember - in Wicca you must have permission when doing magick for others) that is to be purged through ritual.

Knowing what we know today about blood borne diseases and diseases that can pass through bodily fluids, their use is strongly discouraged, especially if people other than yourself will be exposed to it. At no time is ingestion of bodily fluids recommended and is strongly advised against whether it be your own blood, urine, sexual fluids, feces etc. you are ingesting. And most definitely do not cause another person to ingest such fluids unknowingly -- this is assault and can have legal consequences.

As for sacrifice, that definitely goes against the Wiccan Rede's *Harm None*. Not a lot of elaboration needed for this one. Nothing should die for magickal workings. Period.

If you are looking for a coven or teacher, this would be a good question to ask them about to make certain you and they are on the same page. Just please know that overall blood, bodily fluids and sacrifice are not traditionally part of Wicca. So, if you are interacting with a coven or teacher that is Wiccan and does utilize these things and you don't desire to, don't ditch Wicca.  Just keep looking until you find people that are in line with your own beliefs or perhaps better yet, practice as a solitary.

NOTE: I didn't mention spit specifically or snot or phlegm in this article, but the term *bodily fluids* pretty much covers the gambit -- if it comes from a vein or orifice of the body, it use isn't traditional in Wicca but more specifically, definitely not used in WiseCraft Wicca.


Bright Blessings and Blessed Be,
Rayven Michaels

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Wicca is Safe - Witchcraft is Iffy...

What on earth would prompt me to make the statement "Wicca is Safe - Witchcraft is Iffy..." Pull up a chair and sit a spell. (Yes, I know how corny that sounds but I still like to say it.) It is my sincere belief that Wicca IS safe. I would tell any parent that their child's investigation, interest and practice of Wicca is safe IF they are truly practicing Wicca as a religion. However, when youngsters dive into witchcraft aka spellcraft, that is where things can turn the corner.

If your child is interested in the religion of Wicca, it is a very peaceful, love filled, nature based religion. It believes in what could be explained as a spirit mother and father or Goddess and God often referenced as the Lady and Lord. There are 8 Sabbats or holidays that are celebrated called the Wheel of the Year some of which can be compared to traditional holidays. Examples would be Ostara and Easter, Samhain and Halloween, Yule and Christmas, Mabon and Thanksgiving. The Wheel of the Year follows the seasons and celebrates the changes each season brings. Phases of the moon are also celebrated with the most notable being the Full Moon. In short, with all the pitfalls of being a teen such as drug  and alcohol use, sex, sexuality, bullying, etc., if the worst thing you have to worry about in your child's life is their interest in Wicca, please count your blessings.

If your child is adding witchcraft onto their Wiccan practice, it isn't necessarily time to panic but do pay close attention. You know your child better than anyone else -- at least we as parents like to believe that we do. What sort of personality does your child have? Overly curious? Dare devil? Spontaneous? Cautious? Loving? Helps others? Selfish? Spiteful? Vengeful? Whatever traits your child has will carry into their practice of witchcraft. That's where you need to keep watch.

Witchcraft covers a wide range of magick from what could be referenced as white do-good magick to black vindictive magick and on into dealing with trying to summon and master entities. This latter should never be attempted by anyone other than a very accomplished and seasoned Witch, and sometimes not even then. Of course, the danger makes it all the more appealing to some youngsters, not to mention the need to witness something *real*.

It is my opinion that witchcraft/spellcraft requires maturity. As young people approach adulthood and even into early adulthood, they navigate a mine field of emotionalism. Things in their lives can make their mood go from 0 to 60 in as many seconds. Happy to sad to angry and back to happy all in the same hour - maybe less. So, when you have individuals with emotions that are mercurial it can be a not so wonderful combination when mixed with witchcraft. Likewise, young people are often quick to take action without thought as to long term repercussions or even short term repercussions (actually there are many adults like this also). And sadly, there are many that are prone to being bullies and/or vindictive. All these traits make for an explosive combination when mixed with witchcraft. When it comes right down to it, all these things make life tricky period, whether witchcraft is involved or not. So, first step -- know your child -- *really* know your child. Sadly, this isn't always as easy as we parents like to think. Our children do go secretive on us when they reach a certain age. What is hidden in those secrets can make all the difference.

Just remember, the worse thing you can do with your child is jerk knee react to their interest in Wicca. Educate yourself as to the details of Wicca.  Inquire whether your child is practicing witchcraft/ spellcraft and how they utilize it.  Talk openly with your child about any concerns you have. Most importantly, be open minded. Hear them out and treat the situation with respect. Do be firm about boundaries with things like burning incense (which may not be enjoyed by the whole household) or open flame candles, and other things that might be considered dangerous. Boundaries can be things like, incense only in your room, no open flame candles unless parents are home, and of course some of this will depend on how old your child is. Communication is always key in all situations with your child, so this issue of Wicca and witchcraft is no different.

Bright Blessings and Blessed Be,
Rayven Michaels

Peter Paddon - Author and Cunningman: Predators and Pagans

This gentleman does a fantastic job of addressing a horrible ill that hides amongst us in the Wiccan/Pagan community. Lets follow his lead, make a stand and let predators, pedophiles, rapists, bullies, etc. know that they are not welcome amongst our ranks.



Peter Paddon - Author and Cunningman: Predators and Pagans: Today’s news that Kenny Klein, Pagan musician and teacher, was arrested on suspicion of child pornography, raises an important issue that t...

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Recycle Old Candle Wax - No Melting Necessary!

I love recycling and repurposing things. Today I was cruising YouTube vegging out while I waited for time to go meet my daughter and grandkids and I found this really awesome video on how to recycle old candles without melting them! Easy to do and beautiful too! Perfect!!!


Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Are Males Witches or Warlocks?

Witches are practitioners of witchcraft. In my case, I am a Wiccan Witch because I am both a Wiccan and a Witch. So what is a Warlock? Depends on who you ask. In Wiccan circles you will hear emphatically that Warlock is a derogatory term that means *oath breaker* and was used to label those who turned in other Witches during the Burning Times. I've seen lots of arguments about the support for that statement. I've even seen lots of arguments regarding the origin of the word Wicca -- but that is for another post.

Black, White and Gray Magick - Real or Not Real?

If you are a magick practitioner regardless of what flag you fly under (Wiccan, Witch, Pagan, Heathen, Wizard, Warlock etc. etc.) you will at some point here the terms *white magick*, *black magick*, *gray magick* and even *White Witch* or *Gray Witch*. And right along with that comes the debate about those terms. Is there such a thing as black, white and gray magick? Some say yes, some say no. I say ... it's complicated.

Why do I say complicated? Well, first thing you will hear is that magick is neutral because it is just energy. Energy is energy, the argument is made and does not distinguish right or wrong, good or bad. Ok, let's go with that. But that isn't the end of it. Magick is energy, fair enough. But magick is done with *intent* and that intent is either good, bad or neutral etc. So, with that in mind, one could say it is actually the intent of the magickal practitioner that is being defined -- not the energy of the magick. So, if a magickal practitioner says they practice *white* magick, in essence they are defining the vein of their intent when they work magick.

Confession Time -- Fell off the Facebook Wagon Today!!! #ReduceFacebookTimeChallenge

GAK!!!! I slipped up and fell off the Facebook wagon today dag nabbit! Daughter communicates with me through Facebook and was sending me photos in private messages of the prop she is making for Baby Girl Peach's pageant this weekend. And that's when it happened....DON'T LOOK RAYVEN!!! But alas, I fell prey to curiosity and took a look-see at the newsfeed. DEADLY!

I ended up in a 10 to 15 minute exchange with someone that I actually was in agreement with on many points. But somewhere along the way things went awry and next thing I know it was a duel. More is the pitty. Wasted time and energy for both of us and as is wont to do in Facebook. Oh well. So, I am back with my feet held to the fire to STAY OUT OF FACEBOOK! Nothing good ever really comes of being in there... :(

Back to multi-dimensional living - the real world with real things going on. Grandkids are coming tomorrow and will be with me through Friday. Whooo hooo. Laissez les bons temps rouler" ("Let the good times roll).

Bright Blessings,
Rayven Michaels

Fun Little Quiz - I'm a *Crystal Child* - What are You?

Another blogger friend (Divine Wicca) did a little quiz that told him he was an *Indigo Child*. I don't much believe in these sort of quizes but they are a bit of fun. So, I did the quiz and here are my results....I'm  *Crystal Child*. Who knew? LOL

Here's the link if you want to check it out for yourself... QUIZ: are you a normal person, an indigo, crystal or Rainbow child.

are you a normal person an indigo, crystal or Rainbw child ?
You're more likely a Crystal Child !
Crystal children did start coming earlier than most websites say.You’re very sensitive, affective, forgiving and caring, you believe in the most unbelievable things and some people think you’re too naive while you’re mostly right. You have a very light and bright colored aura wich means you’re highly motivated and you enjoy all types of music, art and most things that involves pretending and seeks very much creativity. You you’re smart and mostly seen as the idea guy who comes up with the most weird ideas but it always works! You enjoy working in a group as much as doing things on you’re own, you tend to be very shy and you don’t easily go toward others. You’re mosly quet and don’t talk untill spoken to. You’re a very talented daydreamer and oftely get lost in your world. Highly spiritual, you have a deep connection to nature and animals and you have strong ESP and intuation, you’ve maybe already seen ghosts and you experienced deja vu very oftenly due to you’re psychic abilities.





Monday, March 24, 2014

Yesterways on YouTube -- Subscribe Pretty Please and Thank You

I don't know if this is proper etiquette but I'm forging ahead. :) If you've been enjoying the Yesterways blog, subscribe to Yesterways on YouTube.



Gardening, Living and Spellcrafting by the Signs...

Well, when I was a child and young adult, we always called Granny because she knew how to read the almanac and could tell us when the signs were right to do whatever we were trying to do. As you can imagine, during spring, she was a very busy woman, answering all the calls from people gearing up for gardening. Sadly Granny has long since passed and we're all on our own and have to read the Almanac for ourselves.

Here is a link I find helpful -- it isn't the same as actually having the printed copy of the Almanac in your hot little hands mining its information, but it is very helpful. Click here for the Farmers Almanac online

And here is a page on Planting by the Signs. This particular page gives information regarding the astrological signs and the actions they govern. (I know the website is selling a product, but there is lots of freebie information there that is very helpful. You are on your own regarding whether to buy it or not -- I have no knowledge of it and therefore can't give a proper review.)  Another page on that same website gives information about gardening and the Phases of the Moon.

Here's a nice two month chart of "Best Days" to do particular things. It gives the kind of information we were used to getting from Granny -- best days to cut hair to encourage growth, best days to cut hair to discourage growth (hair cuts are expensive you know...), start projects, plant root crops etc.

And if you want to go full out with a calendar to do magickal workings, then you won't want to miss this one: Seasons of the Witch Planners.  I have used this one in the past and enjoyed it tremendously.

Don't forget to check out Witch Calendars on Amazon and Witch Calendars on Llewellyn for calendars in a variety of offering for the Witch and magickal practitioner.

Overall, there are lots of options out there to help you live, garden and spellcraft by the signs.

P.S. As a disclaimer, I don't make any money off any of the products that these websites sell. I have no experience with any of the products unless otherwise stated.

Bright Blessings and Blessed Be!
Rayven Michaels

Beautiful Find at Second Hand Shop - Folkways Living

You know, I'm not entirely sure what the most appropriate title for this picture is but all I know is, as soon as I saw it, I had to have it. It was well worth the $2 required to procure it from the little junk-it shop that I got it from. I know it a cheap print and frame and sadly my photography doesn't do it justice but there was just something about it that reached into my soul and connected. So, it is now proudly displayed in my family room. I think a place in the country like she has would be a perfect portal to Yesterways living...


Bright Blessings and Blessed Be!
Rayven Michaels

Gardening Has Begun! -- And I'm *Bagging It*

I'm so excited! Gardening has officially begun for me. Today I bought bags of soil, seeds and a lavender plant. I'm pumped! The only let down was that I didn't buy enough bags of soil to finish the job. Here's a photo so you can see what I mean.

As you can see they are brightly colored bags. Might paint them... maybe...or not. Wait, what did I say? Paint them? Yes. The soil will actually stay in the bag. I will poke holes down through them so there is drainage through the bottom and then I will cut a square out of the top. Each bag will be a garden in and of itself and will hold one type of herb or vegetable. Pretty cool eh? Can't say that I came up with the idea all by myself. It was a post that flew around Facebook. Yes, I know, good ole' Facebook that I have turned my back on. Well it did have a highlight or two now and then and this was one of them.

Here are few posts/articles around the web that show what I'm up to:

Click here for article

And I really like what they did with this one.... gives me lots more ideas....

Click here for article

And here is the EXACT one that flew around on Facebook. Check him out. Really cool! I am so pumped for gardening!

Click here for article

Right-o. Well off to the garden I go.

Bright Blessings and Blessed Be.
Rayven Michaels

Follow this Blog: Sol Full Living -- Simple Life - Rich Rewards

This blog belongs to Sol Ess. Not only is he my friend, he and I have co-authored 5 books together which are available in Kindle format through Amazon. (US Amazon and UK Amazon)

As I mentioned in a previous post, Sol really knows how to make the most of the simple pleasures in life which abound if we let them. His blog posts and videos show his day to day happiness in all that he does.

Check this out...he was out and about in a monkey hat. Rather dashing eh? You will love his playful spirit and his hilarious posts -- but don't let it fool you, there is a lot of wisdom under that hat and he shares those insights on his blog as well. Check him out, you'll be glad you did. Oh, and ladies.... he's single. :) (He's going to kill me for that one. LOL)


Sol Full Living: Trip out with my brother: Well went for a trip to see my daughter and bring her back as she is moving back in with me, my brother drove us down and wouldn't let m...

Raise Your Vibration - Do What Makes You Happy! #BeHappy

A friend and I were talking about various things including life and blogs. I am a techno monster so I am always digging around looking at stats and what have you. However, having a more simple attitude about life, Sol says, bah, don't want to get caught up in numbers. Just let it flow where it goes. And it's true - just do what you love and let the rest take care of itself. (Check out Sol's blog: Sol Full Living -- He really knows how to make the most of the simple pleasures in life which abound if we let them. His blog posts and videos show his day to day happiness in all that he does.)

The thing about doing what makes you happy is that...well... you are HAPPY! And being happy raises your vibration. What is the point in raising the vibration?  It helps you perceive higher dimensions and enables you to more readily communicate with your higher self. AND it lifts you up out of the nasty lower, more dense energies that can really zap your strength.

For more indepth info on this topic, check out this article: Streams of Light

And if you are someone that desires to channel angelic beings or beings of light, check out this article on About.com - How to Raise Your Vibrational Frequency

But MOST IMPORTANTLY..... DO WHAT YOU LOVE TO DO THAT MAKES YOU HAPPY!!!

Bright Blessings and Blessed Be!
Rayven Michaels

Follow that Blog: Ozark Pagan Mamma - Check Her Out!

I like to lark around on the web and do research and when I find something good, I like to share and this blog is definitely worth sharing. I hope you will check her out. She has really great things on her blog.

Ozark Pagan Mamma

Folk Magic, Druidism, Heathenry, & Pagan Parenting


Some of my favorite posts, which is how I found her blog in the first place, is on salt-dough art. Oh wow has she made some awesome things. Check out these posts: Salt-Dough

And as a peek to intrigue you, here's a photo showing some of her creations. FABULOUS! Who knew you could do such awesome things with salt dough. Apparently she did. LOL



Bright Blessings and Blessed Be!
Rayven Michaels


Sunday, March 23, 2014

Relaxshacks.com: Dr. Solar's Bicycle-Powered Medicine Show….

You have to check out this guy's bicycle. It looks so totally awesome. Makes me want one! Not to mention all his reasons for having it...
"When gas hit $5.00 a gallon under the last administration. I knew there had to be a better way. Now, I did not have any $30,000-40,000 for an electric car, which is so like grid tied, so I looked back in time. My retro styled drayage truckcab on this tricycle that I installed a Crystalite bike motor came about and it immediately cut my need to consume gas on so many of my short run forays, post office, hardware store, grocery store, etc. 15-18 miles on a charge, 15-18 miles per hour. No insurance, no DMV, no petro chemicals. I charge it with my World's First Solar Powered Theatre roof top array. And, it is all tax deductible. Why settle for a portion of a tax write off? Remember, off the grid."



Relaxshacks.com: Dr. Solar's Bicycle-Powered Medicine Show….: Not tiny housing, but again, this site is also about repurposing, the diy ethic, and living a simpler life, and I love the though behind tha...

How to Consecrate Your Magickal Tools

Here is a wonderful article from Pagan Wiccan About.com on how to consecrate your magickal tools before using them the first time.  Click the photo below to pop on over or click here to read the full article...


Going Cat Crazy!!!! How do I stop this pisser???

Egads! My crazy cat is driving me crazy!!!! Look at this adorable little beast. Precious isn't he? Yes and NO! If anyone has suggestions on how to deal with this sweet innocent looking piss machine, I'm all ears. LOL


Even though we had him neutered at a very young age, he has become the pisser from hell and it's never ending. He always finds a reason to do it no matter how hard I try -- and this has gone on for 15 years now!!!! He is actually around 16 I think so I am trying desperately to be patient with him as I know he is an elder cat and could be lost at any time but oh my stars!!!!!

Today, he walked over, sniffed the door, rubbed a plastic bag I had hanging from the knob and then backed up to the door, and sprayed all over it. I was like, WTH????? He has a cat box within 2 feet of him so what is the bloody deal already????  The only thing I can figure is one of two things or a combination, 1) the bag had a baby diaper in it so perhaps he reacted to human urine?... 2) on the other side of the door on the front porch was a bag of kitty litter cleanings that was set outside but hadn't been carried to the trash bin. So, it is anyone's guess as to which caused his reaction. Perhaps the latter one because in thinking on that, it may have lured neighborhood cats to come up and urinate on it which he smelled on this fine hot day. At any rate, both baby diaper and dirty cat litter have all been deposited in the trash bin now -- away from the house. And I have sprayed down the area he sprayed with a cleaning product called Liquid Alive. Hopefully the cat piss crisis is over. :(

As an aside, the circle shown in the photo is one that I made while living in New Orleans. I transported the stones to my new place here in Oklahoma but I have yet to put them in place. Perhaps it is time. I'll keep you posted.

Blessed Be
Rayven Michaels

My Ostara Altar

I welcomed Spring today with a private little ritual of my own. Here is a video of my Ostara Altar with a brief explanation of what I have on it and why.

Bright Blessings and Blessed Be
Rayven Michaels


Next Phase in Facebook Reduction #ReduceFacebookTimeChallenge

I am now implementing the next phase in my Reduce Facebook Time Challenge -- turning off notifications. Although I have only been popping into Facebook at specific times and not camping out on Facebook, my phone was constantly letting me know that stuff was going on in Facebook. Not only would my phone zing, but that little icon on my phone would show the ever increasing number of unread notifications. Sounds ridiculous I know, but I found that highly stressful to see that huge number and ignore it, not to mention my phones constant zing they created. I had resorted to putting my phone on silent but then that rendered my phone useless for receiving calls. Vibration definitely didn't get it either.

Do you practice Wicca or Witchcraft?

Because Wicca has become such a popular feature in movies and a household word with the public to define anything essoteric, Wicca is automatically associated with Witchcraft. However, you can practice Witchcraft without being Wiccan and you can be Wiccan without practicing Witchcraft. Confusing right? Well, here is a simple set of bullet points that might help you figure out if you are interested in Wicca or Witchcraft...

You might be a Wiccan if....
  • You believe in a God and Goddess
  • You revere nature
  • You believe in Harm None
  • You celebrate the Esbats/cycles of the moon, notably the Full Moon
  • You celebrate the seasons with the Wheel of the Year -- the 8 Celtic festivals
  • You don't believe in the Devil or Hell
  • You believe in Summerland rather than Heaven
  • You believe in some form of reincarnation
  • You practice Spellcraft/Witchcraft (optional -- some Wiccans do, some don't)
Obviously, that is a very simplistic chart of Wiccan beliefs and doesn't embrace all the nuances of the religion or even all the aspects of those points listed but suffices for purposes of this article. Now, moving on...

You might be a practitioner of Witchcraft if....

Lineage and Certifications -- What do they mean to the Witch or Healer?

I did this video a few weeks back but I didn't do a blog post on it. Well, today I am because I do think the subject is a good one. First you have to know what you wish to accomplish which in turn helps you know how lineage and certifications play into your overall big picture. Hope you enjoy.



Laughter is Good Medicine - Laughter Spell

Sometimes that sneaky ole' Funk just slips up on you, swarms you and tries to strangle you and keep you down. I HATE when that happens. I know it goes by many names and sometimes even requires medication to break its grasp but thankfully when it happens to me, I am able to use the good ole' fashioned remedy of LAUGHTER. Funk will not stick around when you break out a laugh or giggle.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Hell, and the Devil are not a part of Wicca

A question often posed to Wiccans is aren't we afraid of burning in hell? And do we worship the devil? Hell and the devil are conventions of the Christian religion. Wicca does not incorporate hell or the devil. We have no need for an entity to fear torturing our souls nor do we need an entity to push blame onto for our misdeeds. In Wicca we don't get the free pass "the devil made me do it." Although I can't speak for every single Wiccan out there, as a general practice, Wiccans believe in personal accountability for our choices so we don't get to blame anything on a devil. Likewise, we don't get tempted by the devil -- instead, it is much more likely our ego or carnal self that is tempted. So, if there is no devil to hold us in check through fearing his consequences of roasting in hell, what keeps us in line? Conscience. Amazing isn't it? That people can decide all by themselves to do the right thing because its the right thing to do. Stop and think about this, if we are living our lives by laws or religious trappings that define what we can and can't do, what would happen if all that broke down for some reason? Would everyone suddenly run amok because the rules were lifted? Would they do anything and everything just because there was no law against it?

Friday, March 21, 2014

Activist vs. Attacktivist -- BIG Difference

There is a great difference in being an *activist* and an *attacktivist* -- in my humble opinion a good *activist* is able to champion their cause in a peaceful and persuasive way drawing people to hear their message and changing the thought processes of others to a new way -- two that come to mind are Jesus Christ and Martin Luther King. 

Unfortunately there is a segment of people out there that think being an *attacktivist* is a grand and noble calling -- they fail to see that they alienate everyone they confront, belittle and demean and they do nothing to further their cause. Instead it becomes an egotistical witch hunt (pardon this term Brothers and Sisters of the Craft) to make themselves feel good that they *shot down* some *jerk* for the other side. 

Championing a cause is about moving that cause forward, not slamming people on the other side or middle ground with hostility. If there is one thing I learned in all my life it is that words have power and that the power of persuasion is the strongest of all. I am saddened to see those that get lost in arrogance and indignation and set their cause back or fail to advance it because they contaminate their cause due to being so rude and hostile that they alienate everyone they meet.

Mundane Arts for Magickal Perfection

The first step of entering the magickal world is looking at old things in a new way.  So, before we jump up on that run away horse and gallop off into the sunset of the magickal realm we need to revisit our mundane world and re-evaluate and improve how we use everyday skills that we already have before we worry about developing a bunch of magickal skills. (Yep, that sentence is way too long and needs rewritten but I decided to leave it....)

In this particular post I'm going to revisit the art of hearing. And actually what I'm really talking about is the art of attentive listening. Unfortunately, a great many of us are guilty of using our ears for hearing in a very passive manner for music or movies. However, when it comes to communication, being good at hearing is not the same as being good at listening. Can you honestly say that when you are conversing with someone that you are actually listening to what the other person is saying and being fully attentive in the moment, word by word, full attention to this person? Or are you guilty of thinking about what you are going to say next? Or worse yet, are you trying to interrupt them with *yes, but - yes, but....*

Meditation Strategies - Candle Flame Meditation

One of the biggest complaints I hear about meditating is that their thoughts never stop. Sadly, it has been my experience the harder you try to get rid of your thoughts the worse the problem will be. And being told to simply *ignore them* doesn't really help either. It's kind of like telling someone in a field of shite not to smell the shite. It's like.... seriously??? In time you would ignore the smell perhaps but it is much more likely you would abandon the endeavor as not being worth your while -- much like people giving up on trying to meditate.

So what is the deal with meditation anyway? What is it for? It depends on your focus. Sorry, I know that sounds like an open ended answer but it is the truth. If you are trying to learn to visualize, then you are using meditation to learn to tame the mind and redirect its thoughts to those of your choosing. Unbiden thoughts are where we are trying to focus on one thing and then have *thought creep* where something totally unrelated to what we are trying to do comes running in like a toddler streaking through our brain. Perhaps you are having a pleasant daydream and suddenly a thought spikes through your brain that you didn't lock the back door. Like where the hell did that come from while you were envisioning a vacation on the beach? Pretty much our minds have ADHD issues. It has been allowed to spike with thoughts at any time at random and not have to worry about what *we* wanted. So that is the issue that has to be addressed for successful meditation.

There are some forms of active meditation where you *do something* rather than just sit. These activities can be something specifically designed for meditation purposes such as a labyrinth or can just be a task you enjoy of any kind -- jogging, gardening, washing dishes, sweeping the floor -- usually something that doesn't require concentration. Something you can do automatically. These sort of meditations are more for giving the body and mind a respite from the barrage of fast paced living.

If you are trying to tame the mind so that you can learn to visualize, connect with your higher self, do psychic work, speak with spirit guides and spirits etc., then you will want to do something that helps you tame the mind and learn to control its thoughts. I use the world *control* but I don't mean forcing anything -- perhaps *tame* is a better choice. The point of this style of meditation is to realize that we are the creator of our thoughts and to become more aware of that process so that we are selective about the thoughts we have and when we have them.

A good first step to taming our thoughts is to slow them down. Here is a candle meditation to help with that process.

Candle Flame Meditation

When first trying this technique do only 5 minutes a day. You will need a small candle with an open flame. You will also need pen and paper for recording your progress.
  • Light your candle and set a timer for 5 minutes. 
  • Have your pen and paper poised and ready.
  • Keep your eyes on the candle flame for the entire 5 minutes.
  • Every time you have a thought, make a mark on your paper. Do not look at the paper, just wiggle your pen and make a mark.
  • When the 5 minutes are up, tally your marks and see what you scored.
Don't worry, at first you might find yourself making constant marks. No problem. Just stay with it. As the days go by, your mind will get used to this exercise and will begin to automatically calm down. Your marks should get less and less. It is most beneficial if you can do your meditation at the same time every day. And just remember, you will have good days and bad days with this exercise depending on what is going on in your daily life.

After a week or ten days, up the time limit for your meditation to 8 or 10 minutes. If it proves too difficult, go back to 5 minutes and stick with that for another week, then try upping the time limit again. Continue this exercise until you can do the desired amount of extended meditation time (15, 20, 30 minutes) with a low thought score.

I hope you find this exercise helpful.

Bright Blessings and Blessed Be,
Rayven Michaels

Nice Meditation Video #Meditation

A very lovely meditation video. If you're not up for the full 30 minutes, do as long as you can, then come back to awareness and just listen to rest of the lovely music. Very peaceful.


 

Rayven Michaels: Accountability - What does it mean?

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Rayven Michaels: My Book "Bristow Spirits on Route 66" is now avail...

Rayven Michaels: My Book "Bristow Spirits on Route 66" is now avail...: My book  Bristow Spirits on Route 66 is now available in Amazon Kindle format! In 2009 I sat down and decided to type up all my ghost exp...

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Jamming on some Steampunk Music! :)

The Windows of Hutch

Oh my goodness! I am so in LOVE with what this person has done. Check out their article. And sadly it only shows the link so I have also included a link to a few pics to encourage you to pop over and read. :)

The Windows of Hutch

templates for these window coverings are sold on the site shown in the above link. Do check them out. Fantastic windows!




3D Living Accomplishments.... #ReduceFacebookTimeChallenge

Since I quit Facebook -- well mostly quit, I do take a peek at it a couple of times a day but I don't roost on it -- I have been doing a lot of what I call 3D living. Basically that equates to *getting up off my arse and DOING SOMETHING!* LOL

So, here is what I have accomplished so far today:

  • scrubbed more adhesive off the hard wood floor that was hidden under some grimy carpet in my sitting room
  • Yule Tree box finally taken out of the living room and stored in the basement (yep I know -- but what can I say, I have a bum arm and steep stairs and the box was HUGE)
  • trimmed the rose bush down real good (hope I didn't kill it....)
  • raked leaves out of two flower beds
  • published a few blog articles and YouTube videos
  • cleaned kitchen sink until it sparkles
  • washed a load of dishes in the dishwasher
For now I am going to take a break and treat myself to some Chinese buffet! Looking forward to that. When I get back, I will carry on. First up on the agenda will be to spray for those damn cockroaches that keep trying to move into my house -- they are most unwelcome guests and will not be tolerated. I think in addition to spraying inside, I am going to spray the foundation of the house as well. Those creepy crawlies are getting in somehow. They likely hitched in on produce and paper grocery bags. ugh. But this war is one I will win. :)

Bright blessings to all
Blessed Be
Rayven Michaels

March Full Moon Correspondences

Obviously I am late on this since the March Full Moon was on the 16th but I wanted to get this out there nonetheless.

The month of March derives its name from the ancient Roman War-God Mars who, amazingly enough, presided over fertility of the land. Additionally, the Roman Goddess Bellona, goddess of war, had her special day during this month.  March is also the month of the Vernal or Spring Equinox in which light and dark balances as we come out of Winter and Into Spring. Wiccans, and I myself in my path of WiseCraft Wicca celebrate the Spring Equinox as Ostara.  Some traditional Wiccan deities associated with this month are Eostre, the Green Goddess or Lady of the Greenwood, Lord of the Greenwood or Green Man. And of course the God Mars since the month is named after him.

During the month of March, the Great Solar Wheel of the Year is turned to the Vernal Equinox, one of the four Lesser Sabbats celebrated each year by Wiccans and modern Witches throughout the world.

*****
March in generally a blustery month weather-wise. The old weather saying "In like a lion, out like a lamb" is an apt description of March weather. For the Romans, it was the beginning of their year. The Spring Equinox, which falls around March 21 or 22, was a sacred and celebrated time in a great many world cultures. In the Southern Hemisphere, this would be equal to the Autumn Equinox, as the seasons are reversed. The Incas celebrated Pacha-Punchy, or Earth Ripening, at this time.
The Roman Matronalia honored Juno Luciana, an aspect of the goddess Juno, who protected women, children, and the family. Statues of the goddess were decorated with flowers, and special temple fires were lit. Girls made offerings to Juno Luciana at this time of year for happy and prosperous marriages.
The statue of Isis suckling her child symbolizes this goddess's aspect as the Great Mother, the caretaker of the Earth and all life. Flowers were floated on the rivers and the boats blessed with incense.
Eostre was the German goddess of rebirth. Rabbits and coloured eggs were fertility symbols connected with her. Originally, Eostre was the goddess of the Spring Equinox whose name was changed to Easter by the Christians.

*****

March Moon names include:
  • Full Crow Moon
  • Full Worm Moon
  • Full Sap Moon
  • Chaste Moon
  • Storm Moon
  • Seed Moon
  • Moon of Winds
  • Plow Moon
  • Hrethmonath (Hertha's Moon)
  • Lentzinmanoth (Renewal Moon)
  • Lenting Moon
  • Moon of the Snowblind

Correspondences:
  • Element: Air & Water
  • Astrological signs: Pisces the Two Fishes and Aries the Ram
  • Colors: pale green, red-violet, violet & purple
  • Stones: aquamarine, bloodstone
  • Nature Spirits: Mer-people, Air and Water beings who are connected with spring rains and storms.
  • Trees: alder, ash, dogwood
  • Herbs: Irish moss, Broom, High John Root, Yellow Dock Root, Wood Betony & Lungwort.
  • Flowers: jonquil, daffodil, tulips, violet
  • Scents: honeysuckle, magnolia, apple blossom
  • Animals: cougar, hedgehog, boar
  • Birds: sea crow, sea eagle, crow, raven
  • Deities: Black Isis, the Morrigan, Hecate, Cybele, Astarte, Athene, Minerva, Artemis, Luna, Mars, Bellona, Juno, Juno Luciana, Eostre, the Green Goddess or Lady of the Greenwood, Lord of the Greenwood or Green Man
  • Power Flow: energy breaks into the open; growing, prospering, exploring. New beginnings; balance of Light and Dark. 
  • Purpose: Breaking illusions. Seeing the truth in your own life however much it may hurt.

The Nine Sacred Woods are:
  • Birch - representing the Goddess or female principle.
  • Oak - symbolizing the God or male principle.
  • Rowan, or Mountain Ash to celebrate life, as it represents the Tree of Life.
  • Willow, sacred to Hecate, is the tree of death. It represents a celebration of death.
  • Hawthorn - tree of purification.
  • Hazel - tree of wisdom. Add hazel to gain wisdow.
  • Apple - tree of love. Add apple wood for the magic of love.
  • Vine - tree of joy. It's juice capable of altering consciousness. Add vine for joy.
  • Fir - tree of immortality. Add fir to your Beltane fire for rebirth.

In the Celtic Tree Calendar:
March 1 – 17: Ash
In addition to being associated with the sea; ash also has connections with the runes and besom brooms.
March 18 & 31: Alder
Associated with courage, strength, and evolving one’s spirit; Celtic hero Bran.



~~~~~~~~~~
Sources:
http://www.magicspells.in/mainpage_months_and_wicca.html
http://www.about.com

Happy Ostara & Spring Equinox

It's officially the first day of Spring! The Spring Equinox is a day of equal light and dark and the beginning of longer days. I am so ready to begin gardening!


Happy Ostara & Spring Equinox



Blessed Be and Bright Blessings to All!
Rayven Michaels


Help Me Name My Witch Cottage

I love it that homes used to have names and people readily understood where a place was when they heard the name. As a covensted for Yesterways, and my Witch Cottage functioning as my primary home, I want to have a fitting name for it. I've had many thoughts but discarded them. I didn't want to include the color in the name because we will be repainting soon and it may no longer be a true grey depending on the color chosen.

I welcome your thoughts on a name. Comment me here on the blog, in Google+ or on YouTube.

Bright Blessings to All
Rayven Michaels

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Spellcraft: Relationship Spell

Sometimes despite the fact that we long for a wonderful relationship with someone - parent, sibling, friend, significant other, spouse -- we seem to say and do all the wrong things and damage the relationship. This spell is to help you have better interactions and communications conducive to forging a better and stronger relationship which a specific person. Because I am a Wiccan and follow the Wiccan Rede, this spell DOES NOT violate the free will of the other person. It merely assists you in having the best interpersonal skills possible with a person.

You will notice that I keep my spells simple. I try to formulate my spells using simple household items that are likely to be readily available in the household of the average practitioner.  It is my belief that being effective is always far more important than being fancy.

Relationship Spell

(Photo Source: Amazon Product)

Items needed:

white candle
(I use tea light candles because they are cheap, come in bulk, easy to find and being white makes them versatile for use in any spell)
9" piece of string, yarn, cord or leather lace
  • Light the white candle while calling in whatever Goddess, God, or helpers that you use when doing your magickal workings. 
  • Tie at knot at approximately 1" on your cord
  • As you tie the knot say "It is my desire to have the best possible relationship with [person's name]
  • Tie another knot a short distance away from the first knot and say "May everything I say to this person be in the best interest of my relationship with this person"
  • Tie another knot a short distance from the last knot and say "May every interaction I have with this person be in the best interest of my relationship with this person"
  • Tie another knot using both ends of the string to form it into a circle and say "May everything I do and say with this person be helpful in strengthening my relationship with this person"
  • Conclude your spell with "And it harm none, my spell is done. So mote it be."
  • Extinguish your candle
  • End your magickal working the way you normally would, thanking and saying good bye to your helpers.
  • Take your spell cord and place it in a safe place. You can wrap it in a cloth, place it in a drawer, put it in a sacred place on your altar or keep it on your person. The choice is yours.
~~ )0( ~~

This spell is designed to be worked at any time there is need. However, you could strengthen the spell by working it during the waxing phase of the moon which is the 14 day period when the moon grows from dark to full. This is the time to work positive magick to draw things to you or increase things which in this case is to increase your relationship skills with a particular person.  You could additionally strengthen this spell by working it in the astrological sign of Libra. And, you could work your spell on a Friday which is ruled by Venus, the Goddess of love and relationships. These are just a few of the optional things you could do to add some extra oomph to your spell. However, the most important thing you can do for your spell is work it with clear intent and strongly believe in your spellcraft.

Bright Blessings,
Rayven Michaels

Spellcraft: Anti-Anxiety Spell

Being anxious is a natural part of life but it is no fun when anxiety becomes a permanent state and torments us. I've crafted a spell to help alleviate anxiety. However, spells are no substitute for medical care and if you are experiencing life crippling anxiety, you should see a medical professional.

(photo source: Cornish Candles Shop)

Anti-Anxiety Spell

White candle
Paper and pen
Fireproof bowl or cauldron
Lavender essential oil (therapeutic grade)
Cotton ball (optional)
Small cloth scrap (large enough to create a sachet around a cotton ball)
thread, twine or string
  • Calling in whatever Goddess, God, or helpers that you use when doing your magickal workings, light the white candle. 
  • Using the paper and pen, write down everything that contributes to the anxiety you are experiencing. 
  • Place the paper in the candle flame to light it, then place it in the fireproof bowl or cauldron
  • Take the lavender oil and sprinkle it on your cloth
  • As the flames consume the paper, sniff the lavender cloth and envision all the anxiety leaving your body, relax, relax, relax
  • Continue to relax and sniff your lavender cloth for as long as you like
  • Once the paper has completely burned and turned to cold ashes, place the ashes in the center of your cloth. If you are using the cotton ball, place it on top of the ashes.
  • Sprinkle the ashes/cotton ball with the lavender essential oil, which is known for its calming and soothing properties and widely used in aromatherapy for anxiety and panic attacks.
  • Bunch the cloth around the ashes/cotton ball to create a sachet.
  • Use the string to tie the sachet closed to keep the ashes/cotton ball safely inside.
  • As you seal the sachet say: "Anxiety bother me no more, I am calm, I am strong, I am better than before"
  • Extinguish your candle
  • End your magickal working the way you normally would, thanking and saying good bye to your helpers.
Carry the sachet with you wherever you go. If you begin to feel anxious, sniff the sachet and repeat the spell words "Anxiety bother me no more, I am calm, I am strong, I am better than before". The lavender will help calm and sooth you.

You can also place the sachet in your pillow to sleep on at night for a restful and relaxing sleep. Or you can make two sachets, one to carry and one for your pillow

~~ )0( ~~


I hope you find this spell useful.

Bright Blessings,
Rayven Michaels

Monday, March 17, 2014

Tarot Tuesday - Week Ahead Forecast

I'm using my John Holland Psychic Tarot for the Heart Oracle deck to make a forecast for the upcoming week. In this reading, I present information to enable you to bring it together to fit your circumstances at hand. I hope you find this style helpful.

Tues - Mar 18:  
19-Shine.  This card depicts a person floating in the heavens allowing light to shine from their chest in a broad beam. This is a Major Arcana card equivalent to the Sun card in traditional decks. Key words are Believe, realize, harness, enthusiasm, potential, breakthrough.
Advice: Today is a great day for accomplishments. Go to it.

Wed - Mar 19:
6-Giving & Receiving.  Physical suit equal to Pentacles. This card depicts hands held palm side up with wonderful balls of energy being offered. The hands are clearly sharing what they have with the others. Like Pentacles, the Physical suit represents business, finances, money, prosperity, earthly possessions, material gain or loss, and security. The keywords for this card are balance, reward, share and ask.
Advice: You have worked hard on something and today you will receive just reward for efforts. 
Thur - Mar 20:
 9-Seek. Major Arcana card equal to the Hermit. Imagery of this card shows a person sitting cross legged in a nature setting with beautiful greenery and birds. Key words are quest, understand, retreat, solitude, introspection and guidance.
Advice: Today step back from your relationship or the pursuit of a relationship and focus on yourself. In scrambling to complete yourself with another, you have lost yourself. This card is to remind you that there can be no *we* without first having a *me*.
 Fri - Mar 21:
8-Dedicated Effort. This card is from the suit of Physical which equates to Pentacles. As with the card on Wednesday, this card is focusing on your real world issues. Imagery of this card depicts a painter on a scaffold painting a magnificent large scale work of art. It brings to mind Michelangelo and the Sistine Chapel.  Key words are work, perseverance, skill and understanding.
Advice: Today, when interacting with others, use your relationship skills and look for the bigger picture. By understanding what others want from a situation, you can transition things to get what you want as well.

Sat - Mar 22:
2-Find Balance. From the Physical suit. This week has been about dealing with real world issues. The imagery depicts a wheel of various symbols. Keywords are cope, multitask, breathe and arbitrate.
Advice: Today strive to bring balance into all situations encountered.

Sun - Mar 23:
3-Share the Love. This card is from the suit of Emotions connected to the Heart Chakra. The equivalent suit in traditional Tarot would be Cups. Imagery of this card depicts an outstretched hand holding a heart in its palm. Keywords are friendship, celebration, rejoice and community.
Advice: Today take a break from the stresses of your relationship or lack thereof and spend quality time with friends.

Mon - Mar 24:
7-Move. Major Arcana card equivalent to the Chariot in traditional Tarot decks. Imagery shows a handfasting ribbon around two wrists, the hands layered palm side up with a heart hovering above them, energy spiraling from the palms and encircling the heart. Keywords are act, direct, master, discipline, focus and effort. 
Advice: Today is a day to act. Take the initiative to move things in the direction that you desire. Regardless of the relationship dynamics at issue today, whether love, family, friends or business, take the reins and move the situation into the direction you desire. 

Migraine Headache: Pain Relief Points

This video shows some great techniques for relieving pain caused by headaches and migraines.


If You Don't Value Your Life, Why Should Others?

I get into this a lot and it often gets me in a bit of trouble to discuss it. Some feel I am being insensitive but I find that I continue to stand true to these feelings even so.

The one thing we are responsible for in life more so than anything else is OURSELVES. We must value ourself in order to have a meaningful life. If we don't value ourselves, how could we ever realistically expect others to value us? If you are being run over by others, step back and ask yourself, have you clearly defined your boundaries? Have you given these people feedback that their behavior is unacceptable towards you? You have to take up for yourself just as you would for any other living being out there.

So this is where I am deemed heartless at times. If someone is in a bad situation and isn't willing to do what it takes to pull themselves up out of it, then why would I want to put myself on the line and the lives of those I love to intervene in your life and try to do your soul work for you? This is particularly true with domestic violence cases. Yes, see, now I have touched the nerve. Everyone has tagged these folks as victims and immediately rally round them to help. And yes, they are victims but I see it differently. When you allow yourself to be abused and yes, I did say *allow* which inflames and outrages many people, but when you *allow* that in your life, then your primary abuser is YOU, not the other person. Because YOU are the broken one and until you are willing to fix yourself, you will continue to seek out situations and people that will allow you to maintain that victim status. Pretty harsh statements aren't they? Now you see why I have been labeled heartless. But I am a firm believer than when change is necessary in your life, you have an obligation to yourself to make it happen. It isn't for other people to do. Not a good neighbor, not a police officer, not a brother, father, or sister. No one other than YOU. If your life is broken, then fix it. If you can't do it all at once then figure out what you can do. If you have someone violent in your life, take them out of the equation -- find a way to get rid of this person. End of story. AND if you have children, all the more reason to do so. It is very unfair to make your children be victims of your cowardace. And yes, I do call it cowardice plain and simple, because you have brainwashed yourself into believing you have no power, are helpless and doomed. Poppycock.

And for those out there that reach for suicide as the solution to problems -- no one can stop you if that is what you are set on doing. I have sunk to emotional lows before where I wallowed in helplessness and grief, and anger and woefulness. But you know what? My tormentor was not the world or my circumstances. My tormentor was ME! It was my mind set. Sometimes people can get themselves out of it on their own. I was one of those fortunate ones that was able to pick myself up, dust myself off and change my mind set. And when I changed my mind set, my whole world changed.

However, I realize sometimes it is more complicated than that and depression is linked to chemical imbalances. But you still have options. You can investigate medication options whether it be chemicals or natural remedies based on consultations with a medical professional, you can avoid things that are triggers for depression - if you are feeling down, you don't watch movies that are emotionally volatile that would negatively impact you. In other words, people, you take responsibility for yourself, recognize you have a problem and then ask for help and begin to do something about it. But what you don't do is play games for attention and just pull people into your special hell and take them on the roller coaster ride with you. You created your own hell for yourself, don't jerk other people around with it.  To me, for as long as you are talking about suicide, you aren't genuinely suicidal. You are just reaching out for attention. And with that being said, I suppose that really tossed me over the edge as heartless.

I am sorry for the heartless sound of this post. I don't mean to be insensitive. I am an avid believer in accountability and that we are responsible for our actions and inactions.

Let me know your thoughts. Am I a complete and total jerk about this? Or do I make sense?

I look forward to your responses.

Bright Blessings,
Rayven Michaels

My New Deck of Cards: John Holland's Psychic Tarot for the Heart

I got a wonderful new deck of tarot cards called the Psychic Tarot for the Heart by John Holland. The artwork is fabulous. I did a reading for a friend with them today and they just had an awesome energy to them.


This Tarot deck has the traditional Major and Minor Arcana cards with a bit of a twist as well as some additional cards for the Chakras. Once I caught on to his system, it was quite easy to interpret. For instance, his suits are Physical, Emotional, Mental and Spirit. Physical cards have a red boarder which makes sense because things in the physical world relate to the Root Chakra which is red. Also, the Physical suit is the equivalent to Pentacles/Coins in traditional Tarot suits. The Emotional would therefore be related to Cups and the color would be green since emotional matters relate to the Heart Chakra. Mental cards have an Indigo border since they tie in with the Third Eye Chakra which relates to communication, and our senses. It's related tradtional Tarot suit is Swords which ties in with sharpness and clarity of mind. And last is Spirit which has a violet border which is often the color associated with the Crown Chakra, our connection to spirit. And being an element of Air, it is Wands in the traditional Tarot suits.

The Chakra cards are quite intriguing. When they turn up in a reading, they are reminders that you may need to tend to that Chakra and see how the things in your life are effecting that Chakra.

All in all, I am enjoying this deck quite a lot.

Bright Blessings
Rayven Michaels

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Make Moon Water



Full Moon Activities

Full Moon Ritual

If you don't have a Full Moon Ritual for tonight, check out this one hosted on the Everything Wicca blog:

Full Moon Esbat Ritual
Preparation
Gather a blue, white, and an orange candle and set them on your altar.
Cast your circle.
Opening
1. Stand at Altar with arms open and feet apart:
Behold the Great Lady, who travels the sky;
The stars shine around Her and light up the night.
More...

Full Moon Blessings to All





Full Moon Esbat Tonight -- Lovely Ritual Planned -- What do you call the March Full Moon?

Tonight is the March Full Moon. I am so excited and have a lovely ritual planned. What will you be doing?

Here is a great photo I found listing all the Full Moons and their names. Some I have heard before and some are new to me. What names do you use for the March Full Moon?


Friday, March 14, 2014

Kyanite Wand on Wiccan Altar (pic)

I LOVE Blue Kyanite and I was WOWED to find this photo of a wand tipped with Blue Kyanite. My brain went *ding, ding, ding* -- now I know what to do with those Blue Kyanite blades I have. Sweet!


This is such a beautiful, beautiful photo.

Bright Blessings,
Rayven Michaels

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Yesterways Google+ Community is up and running

My Facebook fast is going well. Go me! I had a lovely day with my daughter and grandkids. Poor little babies were worn smooth out by the time the day was over. We ended the day with grandson playing in the back yard. I learned something new about him -- he doesn't like his feet wet or his hands dirty.

I finished the day by setting up a Google+ Community for Yesterways WiseCraft Wicca. It is a really cool.

Sweet dreams everyone.

Merry part until we Merry Meet again
Rayven Michaels

Day 3 of #ReduceFacebookTimeChallenge -- Going to Have a GREAT Multi-Dimensional Day!

I am going to have a GREAT multi-dimensional day! My daughter and tiny tot grandchildren are on their way. No Facebook separation anxiety here! I have done my morning check in and now I am off to enjoy a 3D day. No staring at the phone and no roosting on the computer. Whew! My neck feels better already! And I can taste lunch at the favorite restaurant daughter and I like to frequent! Yum!

If you are doing the #ReduceFacebookTimeChallenge, let me know what you are doing with your day.

Bright Blessings,
Rayven Michaels

Raising Your Vibration with Essential Oils -- #RaisingVibration

I am an essential oil freak! I LOVE LOVE LOVE them. I use them for absolutely everything. And because I do use them in so many ways in my life (laundry, bath, medicinal, homemade cleaning products) I get a vibrational boost as a side benefit. Sweet!

Below is an excerpt from a publication by Young Living, a company which sells essential oils. The full publication can be found here. It explains a great deal about vibration of the human body in various states, and vibrations of foods, and essential oils. 
Essential Oil Frequencies
Not all essential oils have the same vibrational frequency. Currently, the highest measured
frequency of any pure, therapeutic-grade essential oils is 320MHz – equivalent to 320,000,000
cycles per second. The scale begins at zero; here, no energy is cycling and no signs of life are
present. Frequencies can be separated into three ranges:
1. Low Frequency Oils that support physical ailments.
2. Mid Frequency Oils that promote emotional change.
3. High Frequency Oils that encourage spiritual growth and realisation.

Merry Part until we Merry Meet Again
Bright Blessings to All
Rayven Michaels

Blog: www.RayvenMichaels.com
Blog: www.Yesterways.com
Link: Yesterways on YouTube

Blog: www.EarthSpiritSoul.blogspot.com
Link: EarthSpiritSoul on YouTube

Twitter @rayven_ess

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Reclaiming Power -- excerpt from High Vibes


An excerpt from my book High Vibes co-authored with Sol Ess through our Earth Spirit Soul publishing.

Available on


Reclaiming Power
I have been called many names
I let them bite into my soul
But they are but words
And as mere words,
they have only as much power
as I grant them
Today I reclaim that power
I say each word
And then I smile
And I tell that word
You are no longer my enemy
You do not define me
You do not have power over me
I set you free to return
to those who sent you
It is their hateful souls
that own you and need you
I do not need you
I am fine without you
I am better than fine
I am Brilliant
Wonderful
Awesome
Superb
All of these and more
Those words I claim
And give power to
For those words nourish my soul
Unlike those hurtful names, those ugly words I have set free
Even when I am broken in spirit
or not on top of my game
Even when I make mistakes
that I later feel shame or embarrassment by
I am not those hateful names
Those words sent to destroy me
To label me
To minimize me
To ridicule me
To demean me
To shame me
BAH and away with all those words
My mistakes are my lessons
Though I wish I had not made them,
I have learned by them
I am a better me
I am stronger
And I have grown
And through that growth
I have outgrown the ugly, hurtful names
that others have thrust upon me.
Today, I push them back to their owners
They have need for them
whereas I do not
My soul feels unbound
free of those hateful words.
It is a wonderful day and I feel awesome

I AM awesome.


Merry Part until we Merry Meet Again
Bright Blessings to All
Rayven Michaels

Blog: www.RayvenMichaels.com
Blog: www.Yesterways.com
Link: Yesterways on YouTube

Blog: www.EarthSpiritSoul.blogspot.com
Link: EarthSpiritSoul on YouTube

Twitter @rayven_ess

Wiccanate Smiccanate....My Two Cents -- #Wiccanate

After a young Wiccan shared a post that mentioned *Wiccanate Privilege* I decided to go research and try to figure out what it was about because I hadn't heard that term before. It seems Wiccans are a highly despised and hated  bunch by a great many people for a variety of reasons but with one reason in common by everyone -- intolerance. Yep, intolerance.

Abrahamic faiths despise Wiccans because we aren't followers of Christ and therefore try to throw us over the fence into Satanic categories and label us evil. You would think the Pagans and Heathens could sympathize with us on that since they are frustrated that they are automatically being thrown into the Wiccan category because they are Pagans. But before we get into that, lets discuss the Brits.

The British Traditionalists despise us because the word Wicca got hijacked and placed into common use to define a religion that doesn't require initiation. For them, no one other than Gardnerian Wiccans have the right to define themselves as Wiccans. They strongly believe and have always believed that it requires a Witch to make a Witch and that without initiation, you are nothing, or more specifically, you are not Wiccan. Pretty much they enjoyed the original privilege of being a secret society and scandalous and the first and all that. Now they've been shifted to the back seat of the bus so to speak and the *new* Wiccans have flooded into the world and made Wicca a household word that everyone has heard and has some comprehension of. But therein lies the rub for the British Traditionalist, the current definition of Wicca couldn't be further from the truth for them. Well, that is sad indeed to be sitting and rankling over the usage of a word. Just think of all the words that have changed usage over the years: gay, queer, xerox, to name just a few that jump to the forefront of my brain. Yes, yes, I know, my what a wee small brain I have. If you'd like more entertaining information on words that have changed usage over time, check out these articles:words-literally-changed-meaningThe-Mad-Logophile-Words-That-Have-Changed-Their-Meaning-Part-1#, and this one is really interesting, 6-words-that-dont-mean-what-you-think-they-mean

And let's not forget the straight up Witches that do not identify as Wiccans. They get pretty irate at being lumped in the Wiccan category as well. In fact, they consider Wiccans *posers* and refer to them with derrogatory terms such as *fluffy bunnies* and McWiccans. I even saw the term Llewelynite Wiccan. Seriously?  It really does sadden me that people feel the necessity to belittle others to elevate themselves.

Now circling back to the Pagans and Polytheists, I do see what they are getting on about, but only sort of. They are complaining that because Wicca has become so popular its definition (the new one) overshadows who they are and what they are about. In other words, Pagan=Wicca is the modern perception propigated by the popularity of Wicca and therefore, all festivals, rituals etc. are spinning around the Wiccan axis so to speak. So when Pagans show up to a *Pagan* festival, what they have really arrived at is a *Wiccan* festival. Ok, I can see the frustration BUT I am not sympathetic. Where were the Pagans during the planning? If there are no PURELY Pagan festivals or Pagan festivals that have a *Pagan* emphasis, whose fault is that? You want someone else to do all the work of planning a festival and then have it fit you right down to a tee and all you have to do is show up? I want to avoid falling off that turnip truck. Because seriously, since Wicca is now an eclectic religion, it isn't even possible to do that from a Wiccan perspective. No two Wiccans are alike which I guess is also a bone of contention, but hey, no two Pagans and Heathens are alike either so do please tell me how you would accomplish making a perfectly wonderful Pagan festival that would please EVERY Pagan and Heathen out there?

While the Pagans are complaining that modern perceptions are Pagan=Wiccan, there is also the perception that Pagan=LGBT. Without some investigation, you can't really know what a festival is about -- is it Pagan, Wiccan or LGBT. All I can say is, if a person is unhappy with the tone of the current festivals out there, THEN PLAN YOUR OWN. That way you know you will be happy with what goes down and you can make certain it represents Paganism in a way that will make you happy. Personally, up to now I have avoided all festivals because they generally seem to have to a high level of crazy that I don't play well with -- sex, nudity, drugs, alcohol, etc. -- nothing that I care to do in a group of strangers. So, unless and until I plan my own festival, or know someone personally that can vouch that a particular festival would be something I would enjoy, I probably won't be at one. And yes, there is no doubt I'm probably missing some great festivals and that is my sad loss. But at least I'm not showing up and then whining that it didn't accomodate me the way I wanted it to.... Besides, just look at this ruckus over Wiccanate Privilege and the fight over words and what they mean -- do you really think I want to pay good money and travel long distance to den up in the middle of a bunch of people that despise each other over their differences? I'll pass, thank you.

Sorry for this bit of rant but it seemed that everyone was weighing in on it and I thought I would throw my two cents out there. And so now I am guilty of violating that old saying "better to be thought a fool than open your mouth and remove all doubt." Well, this old fool is going to toddle off to bed. :)

Merry Part until we Merry Meet Again
Bright Blessings to All
Rayven Michaels

Blog: www.RayvenMichaels.com
Blog: www.Yesterways.com
Link: Yesterways on YouTube

Blog: www.EarthSpiritSoul.blogspot.com
Link: EarthSpiritSoul on YouTube

Twitter @rayven_ess