Spring is coming here in the Southern Hemisphere
I have taken a break from intensely reading about Magic, Paganism and the Esoteric for a spell. I am about half way through several books, Kristoffer Hughs Cauldron Born, Aya: A Shamanic Odyssey by Rak R Razam, and Traditional Witchcraft and the Pagan Revival, by Melusine Draco, which was sent to me by Moon Books Pagan and Esoteric publisher, the book is due to be published this August. All three I would like to review, but seeing as this is not a book review blog, I figured, it was time to post about something else. So on my train rides to and from work I have been reading novels and pondering what to write about here.
While I have taken a small break from reading about Magic and Paganism, my Witchy practice as such and as off beat as it is, has not taken a break. And this weekend was all about preparing for the coming spring. This year for me spring has not come early as it has done so in other years, but it is coming and it’s not far off now. I can almost smell it in the air. My Saturday was spent taking a part of protest against the GCSB Bill, with about 10,000 other New Zealanders around the country, which has left me with an image of a hand full of sand being held so tightly that the sand just slips through the fingers, and the hope that because governements all over the world are clawing so tightly to the way things were that, what will be in, and the people of that future will slip through their fingers. But I digress.
My Sunday was about spring cleaning. It was a glorious sunny day on Sunday and apparently time to spring clean my room, dusting my various altars, picking up all my clothes from the corner of my room, and chasing the dust bunnies out the door. I cleansed as I went, as is the witches way really, using two smudge sticks made by a fellow Witch and Artist, both work wonderfully and whats more smell great.
So for your viewing pleasure, some of the fruits of my labour.
The Goddess Altar, and the God Altar
A little while ago I decided that I wanted to explore masculine and feminine as such. It is much talked about within the various pagan traditions, and comes in many different forms, Goddess and God, Lord and Lady, Brigid and Lughnasadh, Dark God and Light God, Dark Goddess and Light Goddess, the list goes on. So in order to help me understand the masculine and feminine I decided to create two altars, which are more like shrines, one for the Goddess and One for the God.
Did I discover anything new about said Goddess and Gods? The Masculine and the Feminine? Sort of yes and sort of I am still working on that.. I figure it is an on-going process like most things on this path.
This is my current working altar, which is new, not the working altar so much as what is on it and how this has been arranged. You see I am going to do some exploratory work on what is known here in New Zealand as Kiwiana, which I figure one day will be our folklore. It sort of is already but not called that. When you Google New Zealand folklore you usually get Maori Mythology and Legends, which is all very well but I feel that it only tells part of the story. What about the traditions the Europeans brought with them when they immigrated here? It was not so long ago that I can call them folk traditions, but there were various traditions that arrived on our shores with the settlers which has evolved into something distinctly Kiwi, hence my exploration into Kiwiana.
In short Kiwiana is a collection of objects that have over the last 100 – 150 years or so become iconic. Some are old, as such and others are not that old. Some are Maori in origin, for example the Tiki of which I have two forms on my working altar. (the statue on the right, and the green figure hanging on the glass thing in the middle) Other objects, are from the countries where the settlers came from, for example Lamingtons, a sponge cake coated with strawberry or chocolate thin icing and coated in coconut, which could be Australian in origin, or actually Hungarian, where it is called coconut cake, or coconut square but in Hungarian of course. What is important here, is that they are quite iconically kiwi, hence the title Kiwiana. Over the next little while in amongst the various reviews and other posts I am hoping to also explore various aspects of Kiwiana and its magical application.
Photo taken from here
Now I am going to be using a principle that comes from American Hoodoo and root work, which is, from what I understand that Hoodoo and Root workers used pretty much what was on hand. So instead of purchasing expensive and hard to get object and ingredients to do their hexing and root work they relied on local knowledge and a keen mind to use what was on hand. So with these things in mind I am going to be exploring Kiwiana and with magical uses in mind, exploring the objects that I already have and their magical, spiritual and kiwi meanings.