Monthly Archives: June 2017
Heather is sacred to the Summer Solstice, the date of which varies slightly from year to year, and falling between June 20 and June 22.
- Latin name: Calluna vulgaris
- Celtic name: Ura (pronounced: Oor’ uh)
- Folk or Common names: Common Heather, Ling, Scottish Heather
- Ruler: Hestia or Vesta, Isis,
- Planet: Venus
- Element: Water
- Parts Used: herb, flowering shoots, dried or fresh flowers, or oil.
- Basic powers: For magick involving maturity, consummation, general luck, love, ritual power, conjuring ghosts, healing, protection, rain-making and water magick.
When worn or carried, this virginal flower wards off unwanted sexual advances. It essentially tones down the passions. Carry as a guard against rape. Take a bath in heather flowers, preferably during the moon’s waning phase, to help break sex addictions. Wear heather oil to bring a relationship back to a friendship.
Burn with fern to attract rain.
Add the flowers to a floor wash to bless the home. Sprinkle some around the workplace to calm down a tyrannical boss.
Heather is considered a lucky plant, and sometimes gypsies sell sprigs of it for luck. White heather is the luckiest variety, but in Scotland people have doubts about this. This is because a sprig of it was given to Bonnie Prince Charlie in 1745, and it did him no good at all.
Magical History and Associations:
Heather is associated with the sun, and with the planet of Venus. Its color is resin colored and its element is water. Heather’s bird is the lark, and its animal association is the honey bee. In ancient times the Danes brewed a powerful beer made from honey and Heather. And for centuries the heather flowers have also been a special beverage to the bee, who in return creates delightful Heather honey! Its stones are amethyst, peridot, and amertine – and it is a feminine herb. The herb is sacred to many Goddesses: Isis, Venus-Erycina, Uroica, Garbh Ogh, Cybele, Osiris, Venus, Guinevere, and Butes among them.
White Heather was considered unlucky by Scottish loyalists because of its connection with the banishment of Bonny Prince Charles. Heather is the home to a type of Fey called Heather Pixies. Like other Pixies, the Heather Pixies have clear or golden auras and delicate, translucent wings. But these faeries are attracted specifically to the moors and to the Heather which covers them. They are not averse to human contact, but they don’t seek them out. They have a pranksterish nature.
Heather is used for magick involving maturity, consummation, general luck, love, ritual power, conjuring ghosts, healing, protection, rain-making and water magick. Charms made with Heather can be worn or carried as protection against danger, rape and other violent crimes.
This flower represents good fortune and Heather can also be carried as a lucky charm. It was believed that wearing the blossom associated with your month of birth would bring exceptionally good luck – therefore people born in the month of Heather (August) should carry White Heather, for even better luck throughout the year.
Legend has it that a gift of white Heather brings luck to both the giver and the receiver, whereas red Heather is said to have been colored by heathens killed in battle by Christians, so is less lucky.
Heather is associated with secrets from the Otherworld. A sprig of white Heather placed in a special place of silence and meditation has the power to conjure ghosts, haints or spirits.
After picking a piece of white Heather at midnight, place it in a glass of river water in the darkest corner of your home. Sit and think of a departed loved one and it is said that the loved ones shadow will visit you.
Heather is said to ignite faery passions and open portals between their world and our own. Heather represents solitude because it thrives in wide open spaces, and Faeries who enjoy living in such undisturbed places are said to feast on the tender stalks of Heather. The Fae of this flower are drawn to humans who are shy.
Heather is useful for Solitary healing work (going within). Heather, if used along with Mistletoe, creates powerful healing medicine in both spiritual and physical aspects.
Heather can be used at Midsummer to promote love – carry red Heather for passion or white Heather for cooling the passion of unwanted suitors. If you give someone a gift of Heather it means: ‘Admiration’. A charm bag filled with Heather can be carried for decreasing egotism or self-involvement.
As a water herb, Heather is very useful in weather magick. When burned outdoors with Fern, the herbal smoke of Heather attracts rain. Bouquets of Heather and Fern can also be dipped in water to call rain.
- Year of Moons, Season of Trees
- Tree Medicine Tree Magic
- A Druid’s Herbal
- Celtic Astrology
- Glamoury: Magic of the Celtic Green World
- The Book of Druidry
Purpose: Re-dedication to the Lord and Lady, beginning of the harvest, honoring the Sun God, honoring the pregnant Goddess
Dynamics/Meaning: Crowning of the Sun God, death of the Oak King, assumption of the Holly King, end the ordeal of the Green Man
Tools, Symbols and Decorations: The sun, oak, birch & fir branches, sun flowers, lilies, red/maize/yellow or gold flower, love amulets, seashells, summer fruits and flowers, feather/flower door wreath, sun wheel, fire, circles of stone, sun dials and swords/blades, bird feathers, Witches’ ladder.
Colors: Blue, green, gold, yellow and red.
Foods: Honey, fresh vegetables, lemons, oranges, summer fruits, summer squash, pumpernickel bread, ale, carrot drinks, mead.
Goddesses: Mother Earth, Mother Nature, Venus, Aphrodite, Yemaya, Astarte, Freya, Hathor, Ishtar, all Goddesses of love, passion, beauty and the Sea, and Pregnant, lusty Goddesses, Green Forest Mother; Great One of the Stars, Goddess of the Wells
Gods: Father Sun/Sky, Oak King, Holly King, Arthur, Gods at peak power and strength.
Animals/Mythical Beings: Wren, robin, horses, cattle, satyrs, faeries, firebird, dragon, thunderbird
Gemstones: Lapis lazuli, diamond, tiger’s eye, all green gemstones, especially emerald and jade
Herbs: Anise, mugwort, chamomile, rose, wild rose, oak blossoms, lily, cinquefoil, lavender, fennel, elder, mistletoe, hemp, thyme, larkspur, nettle, wisteria, vervain ( verbena), St. John’s wort, heartsease, rue, fern, wormwood, pine,heather, yarrow, oak and holly trees
Incense/Oil: Heliotrope, saffron, orange, frankincense and myrrh, wisteria, cinnamon, mint, rose, lemon, lavender, sandalwood, pine
Rituals/Magicks: Nature spirit/fey communion, planet healing, divination, love and protection magicks. The battle between Oak King, God of the waxing year and Holly King, God of the waning year (can be a ritual play), or act out scenes from the Bard’s (an incarnation of Merlin) “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”, re-dedication of faith, rites of inspiration.
Customs: Bonfires, processions, all night vigil, singing, feasting, celebrating with others, cutting divining rods, dowsing rods and wands, herb gathering, handfastings, weddings, Druidic gathering of mistletoe in oak groves, needfires, leaping between two fires, mistletoe (without berries, use as a protection amulet), women walking naked through gardens to ensure continued fertility, enjoying the seasonal fruits and vegetables, honor the Mother’s fullness, richness and abundance, put garlands of St. John’s Wort placed over doors/ windows and a sprig in the car for protection.
- Latin names: Lythrum salicaria
- Common names: Spiked loosestrife, Purple lythrum, Flowering Sally
- Gender: Feminine
- Planet: Moon
- Element: Earth
- Parts Used: Flower, leaf and stem, root
- Powers: Peace, protection
Placed in the corners of each room, this herb restores harmony and brings peace. Give to a friend to help settle an argument. Brings about protection and peaceful energies when placed in the home.
This plant was considered most powerful when gathered on the Summer Solstice. One could control demons and troublesome spirits with the root if the following words were chanted over it before a sacred image:
You have wept long and much but gained little.
May your tears not drown the open field
Nor your cries sound over the deep blue sea.
Frighten off the demons and the witches!
If they do not submit to you,
then drown them in your tears!
If they run from your glance,
throw them over cliffs or into pits!
May my words be firm and strong
for hundreds of years!
Information collected from various sources
Egyptian priests believed that cats carried the magnetic forces of nature and so close proximity to the creatures enabled them to access these powers.
- Ruler: Bastet and/or Freya
- Type: Animal
- Magickal Form: Alive, whiskers, hair
- Qualities: Magick, Mystery, Independence
This animal is the most common of the witches’ familiars. They are very sensitive to occult workings and wise in the ways of the goddess. In order to make the cat a familiar, it must taste the blood of the witch.
The correct way to do this is to let the cat become your familiar in his or her own time. You will know when this occurs, as he or she will take a good hard bite out of your hand, cheek, or leg and draw blood. Voila! You are now bonded for eternal life.
Cat’s are excellent weather forecasters, and can be used in various methods of divination. More info can be found here: Cats
When a cat drops a whisker, place it on the altar for good luck. It is very bad luck to cut or pluck a whisker from a cat. Cat hair may be obtained by rubbing the back against the grain. Add the hairs to gamblers’ luck potions to increase your chances of winning.
- Black cats are very lucky indeed and you will be blessed when one crosses your path.
- Red cats and calico cats bring money.
- A Gray cat will protect you.
- A Siamese cat will bring laughter into your life.
A Magickal Invitation
Here’s a nice little invocation to bring some “cat magick” into your life, you can use it to speak to your own cat, or you can invoke the energy through the use of pictures, or whatever else has meaning for you personally.
Littlest lion, panther in miniature,
Help me in a my magical endeavors,
Teach me to see my path through dark places,
Help me to sift the necessary from the unnecessary
And to relax and enjoy life.
Strengthened my magic and carry it to its destination.
Witches and Cats
“All cats are grey at night.”
~Old French Proverb
No other animal is more frequently linked with Witches and the Craft than the cat, and in particular the black cat.
This is not just part of the mythology of the Craft, as many Witches live with cats. Notice I say “live with” not “own.” No one who knows cats will ever consider that you can have possession of one! Having said that, there is no reason why you have to live with a cat to be a Witch.
There is an enormous body of folklore surrounding the cat. A cat washing behind it’s ears is said to forecast rain; stroking an affected eye with a cat’s tail was thought to cure a stye, and so forth. Whatever you feel about such sayings there is no doubt that the cat is a very magical animal. One of mine, now sadly dead, could tell the difference between a true Witch and a pretender. Certainly both my current cats pay great attention whenever I am practicing the Craft, and can distinguish between a candle lit for magic and one lit for ambiance.
Another way in which cats and Witches are linked is that cats are probably the best domestic animal for borrowing. That is when you transfer a part of your mind into the body of the animal so that you can travel in it’s shape and experience the things it sees and does. Indeed; it is thought that the saying that a cat has nine lives is an indication of the number of times a Witch can ride with a cat in this way.
For Your Cat
Catnip has an aromatic odor, similar in scent to both Pennyroyal and Mint. Because of its powerful and unusual smell, catnip has a strange fascination for cats, who will destroy any plant of it that may happen to be bruised. According to Maud Grieve’s A Modern Herbal, there is a saying about catnip:
If you set it, the cats will eat it,
If you sow it, the cats don’t know it.
If you give your feline a bit of catnip, it will help strengthen the psychic bond between you, in addition to getting your cat as high as a kite. Although typically used in pet-related workings, catnip is also an herb of love, and can be included in sachets or incense.
The “Familiar” Cat
A cat totem encourages agility in both body and mind. You will be challenged with new ideas and places. The cat gives you clearer perception. This spirit helper is resourceful, strong and fearless. It will give you courage and confidence.
Examine the colors, character and behaviors of your Cat. Everything about it will reflect in your own life. When a Cat becomes predominant in your life, magic and mystery come alive.
Associated with the Norse Goddess of Fertility Freyja and the Hindu Goddess of Childbirth, Shasthi and of course, the Egyptian Goddess Bastet who takes the form of a cat.
Petitioning Freya With Cat Magick
Freya, “She Who Shines Over the Sea,” has associations with cats as powerful as Bastet. The old Norse tradition of paying tribute to Freya and seeking her aid or guidance involved feeding milk to cats.
Put out milk for stray cats. If you don’t live in an area with stray cats, bring contributions to a shelter or adopt a gray stray cat.
The feeding isn’t done by rote but as a conscious offering. Speak with Freya simultaneously, explain your needs, desires, and broken heart and request assistance.
Pay attention; her response may come through the cats themselves.
Celtic Cat Lore
Many Celtic legends pictured the Cat as a ferocious and evil creature. However, that may have been because Cats were untamed during the time of the Druids. It was a potent totem animal of several clans and Caithness, named after the Clan of the Catti, is one example.
In Irish lore, Finn mac Cumhail was said to have fought a clan of “cat-headed” people…most probably Celts who wore cat skins on their helmets. The Cat was thought to be a strong protector, especially when facing a confrontational situation.