Gaia – Our Mother

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Her Song: The Song of the Ancient Earth

I.
I am the ancient Earth
I have been here millions of Years

The deep, deep peace that you feel now
Is the peace of the ancient Earth.

There is no need to hurry or rush
Go slowly and take my gift of peace.

I know you well, for you are very ancient too.
Every starborn cell in your body
Has been here since time began.
You are infinite and eternal
Spirit and Matter.

Every lifetime that you have walked this ancient land
I hold within my memory
I know you well
When you came I welcomed you
Beloved Friend
I remember your dreams and desires
Nothing is ever lost
I hold you and nurture you.

You know me well
I am the ancient Earth
Let me sing to you of days of peace
Milleniums when only the wind blows.

Beloved children
There is no need to rush
Experience my peace
It is the peace of the Ancient Earth

II.
And as I watch you Starborn ones
Come and go
I see and I feel how you flow with life

And I know when I feel at peace with you….

It is when you honor the river of life from God
When you understand the spirals
That flow from the Great Celestial Mother

Then you live with honor and respect
You honor the Elders and the Wise Ones
Human or animal or plant or rock

You know your place in the Universe
And you know that you give and receive in equal measure
You understand the flow of days in the spiral of time
And you give honor to those with many days
And you guide and lead those who are young
And you honor the changes and transitions in your life
Supporting these in others

And so you honor me and all my children
If you honor yourselves
But when you forget and you rush through life
In a panic of activity
Then we cannot meet
And I cannot give you my gift of perfect peace

Slow down, human children
And hear the ancient song of perfect peace.

III.
The ancient Earth is Male:
Matter is hard and unyielding…..
The Galactic center is Feminine:
Energy is light and fluid and flexible….

In their act of mating
Earth is enfolded and embraced
By the Galactic Goddess
The waves of their passion and ecstasy
Are the waves of light and energy
That you feel now……

You can share in their passion
If you find your own passionate
Marriage
Of Sky and Earth….

Keep your feet on the Ground, beloved ones
But reach for the stars….

Be like the Great Trees…..
Rooted in earth but reaching for Light….. 

© 2007-8 Celia Fenn and Starchild

We finish our journey through the Natural World at our home base Earth. Many call this Earth Mother, Gaia. She offers us her food and willingly sacrifices her waters and lands to our needs, and asks only that we love and respect her in return. We see her creativity expressed through every leaf and flower; always pregnant with new life and always having just birthed what renews and replaces.

Gaia is the Goddess that personifies Earth. She is the Great Mother, as she holds within her body all of life on this planet. She is the natural extension of the thoughts of earth as being a fertile world that nurtures humanity. Wicca, being an earth/nature-based religion, at its foundation of philosophy views everything of the natural world as sacred and to be held in reverence. Nothing takes precedence over another in its nature of Divinity for everything is created from and an expression of the Divine.

If we look at the emerging thoughts of Wicca being not only as earth-based but cosmically-based as well, Gaia again holds true as goddess supreme. Her myths tell of her progeny which were planetary, stellar and Gods and Goddesses that ruled various aspects of the earthly domain. **

** Check out T. Thorn Coyle’s Podcast from Pantheacon Episode #29 -February 2010 and panel discussion of this subject.

To quote Tom Kenyon, Sound Healer and Shaman..

” The Earth has her own grid or grid-work of subtle energy channels. Some of these are called ley lines. They are conduits for the flow of subtle energy through Earth’s body, similar to your own subtle energy channels. But, of course, the energies that move through the Earth’s subtle energy channels are much more massive than those energies that move through your body. But there is, nonetheless, a relationship between your meridians/nadis and the ley lines of your planet.”

Her Gifts
of
Color and Light

Gaia vibrates and beams of color and light fill the panoramic view…

Northern_Lights_Over_Portage_River_Valley_Alaska

Color

The Earth produces an artist’s palette of color. The primary colors are red, blue and yellow. The secondary colors are green, orange and purple. And with the multiple variations of each we have the painting that is the natural world. We have taken from this palette and interpreted and routine make use of the various colors in our mundane lives.

We all know what a profound impact colors can have on us. Think how boring it would be to exist in a world that was nothing but values and shades of white and black. The varying scales of color (albeit originating from the spectrum of white to black) has been scientifically shown to influence our emotions, our actions and how we respond to various people, things and ideas.

Warm colors= stimulate
Cool colors= calm/soothe

These attributes are used all the time in advertising, alternative health practices, psychotherapy, decorating, and other ways to engage our senses, draw us in and at times persuade our choices. For example, Orange is used in restaurants, because orange increases the appetite. A good combination for restaurants is pale blue or turquoise and orange. A relaxed atmosphere and a big appetite are the perfect environment for a restaurant.

Some of the basic attributes of colors are listed below:

Red symbolizes: action, confidence, courage, vitality- Is used to energize and stimulate. Affects the heart by increasing pulse rate, and the muscles by increasing their tension. Influences vitality, and increases body temperature. Can be used to develop excitement and sensuality.

Orange symbolizes: vitality with endurance- The combination of the fiery heat of red and the strength and sustenance of yellow. Stimulates and relates to systems of digestion. Dynamic, but in a controlled way.

Yellow symbolizes: wisdom, joy, happiness, intellectual energy- Increases neuromuscular tone. Purifies blood, helps digestion, and has a cleansing effect. Strongly stimulates happiness, brings on a sense of security, as well as a strong feeling of well-being. Used for regeneration.

Green symbolizes: life, nature, fertility, well-being- Regulates the pituitary gland, fights depression, bulimia, and other psychosomatic conditions affecting the gastric system. Useful in calming the nervous system.

Blue symbolizes: youth, spirituality, truth, peace- Is calming and stimulates the parasympathetic system, reduces blood pressure and calms both breathing and heart-rate. It has anti-inflammatory and muscle relaxing effects. Fights both physical and mental tension and is used to assist in relaxation.

Indigo symbolizes: intuition, meditation, deep contemplation- A deeper shade of blue.
Purple symbolizes: royalty, mystery, spirituality- The opposite end of the rainbow spectrum- combines the cool properties of Blue and the fiery transformative powers of Red.

Brown symbolizes: earth, order, convention- A color of blending, the natural world and fertility.

White symbolizes: Purity, Cleanliness- The reflection of pure light.

Black symbolizes: Death, earth, stability- A composite of all colors and the absence of light.

Color is a vibration of light. In dim light, the color we see will seem different than in bright sun light. Sir Isaac Newton used a prism in 1666 and saw the rainbow of colors that we know as the spectrum. Showing that sunlight is not one color, the spectrum is red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, violet the 7 basic colors. This is also the scale used for the energy centers called the Chakras. (1.)

Light

Light is another experience of Gaia’s gifts. We thrive in light. We bathe in the warmth and light offered from the Sun’s rays. If deprived of light for unnatural; periods of times are mood and affect are diminished and impaired. Light is the medium through which varied colors are achieved. It is the angle and aspect of light that will give shade and color to what is being shone upon.

Just as Gaia carries the Light of Life within her being, we also have the spark of Divine Light that we carry to illuminate and draw us to a place of greater service. When using the intent of light and specific colors as focus for ritual and meditation we are drawing upon the natural gifts that surround us. Consider using specifically colored candles or altar clothes for your meditations. Wearing specific colors can enhance the energy we feel as we go throughout our day. And meditating on colors can open the door to specific energies. When we use these modalities we are also setting up the magnet of attracting similar harmonics and rhythms of the energies that we are sending intent towards.

Light, received through the lens of the eye, also affects the glands- Hypothalamus, Pituitary and Pineal. The endocrine system plays a major role for the body’s daily health. The glands release hormones directly into the blood stream and control all aspects of growth, development and daily activities. These glands, in addition to 4 others are those which are stimulated through spiritual practice and specific practices. These glands and their stimulation through the source of light also open the being to greater spiritual awareness.

An Experiential Color Visualization: Breathing Color

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This exercise is one of imaging a color and breathing it deep in the lungs and filling your body with its specific energy. This method is often used in Chakra cleansing; imagining each chakra as a globe of its specific color in the most vibrant and clear form of that color.

Initially, when practicing find a space where you will not be disturbed and can set maximum focus on the exercise. Also begin with Red, working your way through the natural order of the rainbow scale outlined above. This helps in the visualization as we are naturally attuned to these sets of colors morphing one into the other as patterns of vibration and light. Allow your breath to establish an even and relaxed rhythm and when this is done see a veiling of tiny particles of whatever color you have selected forming directly in front of you.

Now, take a deep breath of inhalation imagining these particles coming in through your nose and filling your lungs with their light. As you exhale imagine this color flooding through every cell of your body. Do this for several more repetitions until you feel completely illuminated and filled by the specific color you are using. Allow this color’s energy to settle into you. And, engage all of your senses in what you are experiencing from this energy.

Breathe deeply and fully and simply allow the color to slowly fade as it is absorbed by your body. Make note in your journal of the experience. Only use one of the colors each day when beginning. As you become more adept at the visualization and familiar with the particular effects a given color has on you personally, you can call this technique into action whenever needed.

For instance, if you need more insight and clarity into a situation you may wish to work with the color Indigo. This color relates to intuitive insight. Or, if you need an extra energy boost, instead of grabbing that Red Bull, fill yourself with the color Orange for vitality and endurance. If you wish to have a more heart-centered focus fill yourself with Green, and if you wish to enhance your communications or promote healing, visual Blue.

Crystals and Minerals

Gaia holds within her bosom the gifts of Crystals…

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“A crystal is a solid in which the constituent, or ions are packed in a regularly ordered, repeating pattern extending in all three spatial dimensions. The formation of a crystal by a substance passing from a gas or liquid to a solid state, or going out of solution (by precipitation or evaporation), is called crystallization. The process of crystal formation uses – minerals – heat – pressure and gas. Once formed, crystals are the most stable and organized compound in the Universe. Color of the crystal is determined by minute presence of other substances. Iron produces the color red; smoky brown indicates the presence of uranium and pink reveals titanium and manganese” 

Crystals have many and varied uses:

• Spiritual: connection tool for divination – psychic awareness – chakra balancing
• Therapeutic: healing either through directing healing energy through the crystal via a healing
• Healing through reaction to the energetic vibratory rate of a specific crystal itself
• Decorative; visual appeal = large geodes/spheres

In magickal practice, crystals are often used as holders and projectors of energy. Knowing the basic attributes of select stones can help in your selection of a set of basic working crystals. In putting together a starter set of multi-purpose stones some things to consider are:

• Types/ Color:
Rainbow set + black or dark brown
Quartz crystal- are generally multi-purpose and can easily be exchanged for any other crystal needed
Rose Quartz- connection to the heart – healing/ love
Clear crystal quartz- generic

• Size:
The size of a quarter is large enough to differentiate between crystals and small enough to hold

• Purpose:
What will these crystals be used for most often?

The suggested stones here are only a very small example of the possibilities but most of these are readily available. These provide a spectrum of color, chakra connection and attributes. 

Red – First chakra (root) – Physical and survival matters Garnet, Ruby or Red Jasper
Orange – Second chakra (sacral) – Emotional matters Carnelian, Fire Opal, Fire Agate, Orange Calcite or Orange Jasper
Yellow – Third chakra (solar plexus) – Mental and will matters Citrine, Topaz, Amber and Sunstone
Green – Fourth chakra (heart) – Love and spiritual matters Malachite, Emerald, Green Calcite, Jade or Aventurine
Sky Blue – Fifth chakra (throat) – Communication matters Blue Lace Agate, Turquoise, Amazonite, Blue Sapphire, Aquamarine, or Azurite,
Indigo or Violet – Sixth chakra (brow) – Intuition and clarity matters Lapis, Sodalite, Amethyst, Sugulite, Azurite, Lepediolyte, or Kyanite
Violet or Clear – Seventh chakra (crown) – Higher spiritual understanding Amethyst, Clear Quartz, Diamond or White Agate
Pink – Matters of love, understanding, physical healing Rose Quartz, Kunzite -Pink marble, Pink Calcite, Rhodenite or Rhodocrosite
Black – Protection, grounding and cleansing Hematite, Jet, Black Tourmaline or Obsidian
White – Generic and universal in use White Celestite, Angelite Apophyllite, Selenium or Moonstone

Bonus Recommended Reading:

Gem and Mineral Lore Paperback by Paul V. Beyerl

The Book of Stones: Who They Are and What They Teach by Robert Simmons and Naisha Ahsian (Highly Recommended)

Crystal Healing by Judy Hall

Cunningham’s Encyclopedia of Crystal, Gem & Metal Magic (Cunningham’s Encyclopedia Series) by Scott Cunningham

An Introduction to Working with Healing Crystals by Brenda Hunt

Herbs

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Herbs and plants of the Earth were the first medicinal and magickal tools used by the ancients. In all of the ancient cultures you will find plants being used as medicine, tokens of offerings to their Gods and Goddesses, for protection, fertility, as a source of nutrition and more. Herbs mixed with available resins were used as incense in the Temples and many of these same ingredients are used in today’s incenses. The use of the censor with Frankincense burning fully in churches began as a way to purify the surroundings where many would congregate particularly during the times of plagues and rampant disease.

Herbs were used in amulets and talismans as protective tools and to bring good fortune. Herbal teas could aid in issues of fertility and the poultice of herbs would soothe the fever and keep infection at bay in the case of wounds. Today we use herbs as seasonings to enhance the flavors of foods or opt for an herbal tea when over caffeinated or digestive disorders flare up. Most people are familiar with the uses of herbs as culinary tools. Some incorporate these into their practice of (w)holistic health. But, most witches have a working knowledge of herbs and plants and often choose to make the study of herbs and plants one of their points of focus to be used in workings, healings and of course, culinary magick.

There are a variety of ways to use herbs and other plant materials. In dried form, they may be placed in a small pouch, with other ingredients intended for a specific working or tool of protection. Fresh or dried herbs may be used in teas to calm, open the psychic senses or heal depending on the selection included. Sprinkled in a bath tub, they can be used to draw out toxins, soothe achy bodies or soften skin. Tinctures are made by combining herbs in a seal tight container with alcohol (vodka is often used) used as the carrier and set to “rest” for months before using for the medicinal qualities or as additions to magickal workings. A similar process is used to make herbal oils with the herbs placed in a carrier oil such as jojoba or grapeseed. These oils can be used for anointing in ritual, or as cosmetics to soothe irritated skin or bring about a healthy glow. In the culinary arts, oils and vinegars are routinely infused with a variety of herbs, drawing out the flavor of the herb and creating a new taste to be enjoyed.

Although obtaining fresh and dried herbs is as easy as going to your local supermarket or garden market, most Witches prefer to grow some of their own. You do not need an abundance of space in the country to have a useable variety of the herbs that you most frequently use on hand. A porch or windowsill of a city apartment will accommodate small containers and only requires some tender loving care. Many cities also have designated lots that are community areas for growing all manner of plants and work on a cooperative basis. If you have the additional space of a yard, dedicating an area of it to growing your magickal herbs is a way to get you connecting more deeply to the soil, sun and energy that goes into the growing. Harvesting those herbs that will not survive the cold provides an opportunity to bundle, hang and dry them inside, bringing the vibrancy and scent into your living space.

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There are many resources available both in books, online and through workshops that can get you started with working with herbs. I have listed some of the more common (and more easily found) Herbs that you could use to start your exploration. This is by no means a comprehensive list nor are these the only properties for which each of the herbs may be used. As you work continually with a few of these, you will begin to connect to the energy and spirit of each of the Herbs and adapt your use accordingly with what you intuit to be the best herb of choice for the given task.

Angelica Protection and visioning
Basil Love and protection
Bergamot Money and success
Burdock Protection and healing
Chamomile Money and purification
Cinnamon Success and power
Dragon’s Blood Protection
Eyebright Mental stimulation and psychic sight
Feverfew Protection and healing
Goldenrod Money and divination
Hyssop Purification and protection
Lavender Love and healing
Lemon Verbena Purification and Love
Meadowsweet Peace and happiness
Myrtle Money and fertility
Passion Flower Sleep and friendship
Primrose Protection and love
Rosemary Protection and stimulates mental powers
Rue Health and love
Sage Wisdom and purification
Scullcap Fidelity and peace
Thistle Strength and healing
Urva Ursa Psychic workings
Valerian Sleep and purification
Woodruff Victory and money
Wormwood Psychic powers and calling spirits
Yarrow Courage and psychic powers
Yucca Transmutation and purification

I have purposefully left out discourse on the energetic beings that are held within the life of the plants. This will be discussed more in future lessons. 

If you do wish to purchase a supply of herbs be sure that you select a supplier that does not over harvest or uses chemicals. These are a few resources that are reliable and respectful in their approach to growing and harvesting:

Mountain Rose Herbs

Zack Woods Herb Farm 

The Sacred Trees

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Everyone has had a fascination for Trees at some point in their lives. This may have been as a child and the power felt in climbing up through the branches of your favorite tree. Or as a teenager, sitting with your boy/girl friend under a tree hoping for that first romantic kiss. If this fascination grew you came to see Trees, not only as a source of shade but as a living growing space of beauty that spread further and reached higher than any human could. And, if you were particularly astute in your observation you came to see that each Tree had its own sort of personality (energetic stamp) and changed in accord with the seasons flexible in its strength and glorious in its majesty. You may have also noticed that many of the natural groves and spaces of the Trees were being cleared to make way for urban expansion. The once green shady path that sat at the edge of the city was now concrete and bustling with stores and restaurants.

For one who follows a nature based Path, each Tree is a sacred and vibrant living energy. To the ancients, Trees were the embodiment of the forces of nature and a grove of Trees was often the preferred working place for magick, celebration and the honoring of the wild. The forest was the home to those animals that were held sacred to their Gods and Goddesses and within the forest the Green Man oversaw the protection of those contained. Certain trees held special significance for their ability to burn well as fuel for heat, cooking, building materials and weaponry.

“ In addition to this however, many woods also provided a powerful spiritual presence. The specific trees varied between different cultures and geographic locations, but those believed to be “sacred” shared certain traits. Unusual size, beauty, the wide range of materials they provided, unique physical characteristics, or simply the power of the tree’s spirit could grant it a central place in the folklore and mythology of a culture. Even our modern culture finds that certain trees capture our imagination. The mighty oak, the mystical yew and so many others are reminders of the power that trees have on our lives.” by Ed Collins (Sacred Celtic Trees and Wood)  and ….

” Druid tradition held nine trees as particularly sacred. Wood from the nine was required to light the annual Beltaine fires to usher in the summer season. An old song preserves the names of eight of the nine:

….Choose the willow of the streams, choose the hazel of the rocks Choose the alder of the marshes, choose the birch of the waterfalls Choose the ash of the shade, choose the yew of resilience Choose the elm of the brae, choose the oak of the sun…

The ninth is not mentioned but is presumed to be the thorn, or hawthorn, tree. The smoke from the sacred fire, called the need fire, would be used to purify croplands and cattle, and embers from the fire would be used to relight the hearth fires of every home. Each tree described in this chapter was prized for a different reason. All were sacred to one or more gods, providing an invaluable resource both for practical and magical purposes.”  by Jenifer Emick (Nine Sacred Woods)

We also are told of the magickal properties of the sacred Trees in The Witch’s Rede that you were given at the start of this course:

Nine woods in the Cauldron go, burn them fast and burn them slow.

Birch in the fire goes to represent what the Lady knows. Oak in the forest towers with might, in the fire it brings the God’s insight. Rowan is a tree of power causing life and magick to flower. Willows at the waterside stand ready to help us to the Summerland. Hawthorn is burned to purify and to draw faerie to your eye.
Hazel *-the tree of wisdom and learning adds its strength to the bright fire burning. White are the flowers of Apple * tree that brings us fruits of fertility.
Grapes grow upon the vine giving us both joy and wine. Fir does mark the evergreen to represent immortality seen. Elder is the Lady’s tree burn it not or cursed you’ll be.

* there are 10 woods listed, but Hazel and Apple share the lunar month that is referenced.

These Trees form the Celtic Tree calendar, a system of divination and time keeping that assigned a sacred tree to each of the 13 lunar (from Full to Full) months. The magickal properties and energies of that sacred tree were thought to permeate its cycle and could be used for specific types of workings, celebrations and honoring of Deity.

The Celtic Tree Calendar

Birch Nov. 1 – Nov. 28 Beginnings
Rowan Nov. 29 – Dec. 26 Protection
Alder Dec. 27 – Jan. 23 Guidance
Willow Jan. 24 – Feb.20 Feminine Principle
Ash Feb. 21 – Mar. 20 World Tree – As Above, So Below
Hawthorn Mar. 21 – Apr. 17 Cleansing
Oak Apr. 18 – May 15 Strength
Holly May 16 – June 12 Justice
Hazel (Apple) June 13 – July 10 Wisdom (Choices)
Vine July 11 – Aug. 7 Prophecy
Ivy Aug. 8 – Sept. 4 Labyrinth to Inner Knowledge
Reed (Blackthorn) Sept. 5 – Oct. 2 Direct Action (Negation)
Elder Oct. 3 – Oct. 30 Renewal
Oct. 31- Was given to no Tree or God/dess but held in reserve for personal dedication and recommitment to spiritual path. The beginning of the Celtic Year

We’ll learn more about the Tree Calendar in future lessons.

Bonus Resources:

An excellent introduction to the Sacred Trees and their Lore:

The Order of Bards, Ovates and Druids

Trees and the Sacred by Christopher L. C. E. Witcombe
Professor, Department of Art History, Sweet Briar College, Virginia 

Bonus Recommended Reading:

Healing Wise (Wise Woman Healing Series) by Susun Weed

The Herbal Healing Bible: Discover Traditional Herbal Remedies to Treat Everyday Ailments and Common Conditions by Jade Britton

The Healing Herbs: The Ultimate Guide To The Curative Power Of Nature’s Medicines by Michael Castleman

A Compendium of Herbal Magic Paperback by Paul Beyerl

The Healing Power of Trees by Susan Hildalgo

A Druid’s Herbal for the Sacred Earth Year by Ellen Evert Hopman 

In Conclusion..

Gaining knowledge of the mysteries of Gaia, The Great Mother is our task and care and respect are her expectation. In setting foot on the Path of the Wise we are accepting responsibility as stewards of the Earth and all that lives within Her fertile body.

As we end our study of the Natural World and Lesson Two, be sure to take full advantage of the timing of this Lesson to get outside and physically enjoy the beauty of this life. Drink in the Sun Light, rest in the shade of the setting sun and ever be mindful of your place in this world and the power you have in improving and honoring it.  Blessed Bee!

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Foundations of Practice: Physical Application
The Elements and the Four-Fold breath

Resources:

(1). Read more about the Chakras here:

The Sacred Vessel Blog

Our Physical and Subtle Anatomy: Part Two

The Magickal Pen Blog

Chakras- The Vital Organs of the Subtle Bodies

A Chakra Renewal Meditation

 

Lesson Three Begins: July 1.2014

The Divine World

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