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Yule Greetings!

No blog featuring content dealing in Wicca on any level would be complete without the obligatory Yule post. For those that don’t know, Yule is an old Germanic, Pagan tradition and while scholars have connected it to The Wild Hunt, I’m more focused on asking around for traditions you have for the holiday.  Or, as the celebration more or less lasts for about two months in some traditions, how do you enjoy it?

This bit of knowledge from Wikipedia I found interesting:

The Saga of Hákon the Good credits King Haakon I of Norway with the Christianisation of Norway as well as rescheduling the date of Yule to coincide with Christian celebrations held at the time. The saga states that when Haakon arrived in Norway he was confirmed a Christian, but since the land was still altogether heathen and the people retained their pagan practices, Haakon hid his Christianity to receive the help of the “great chieftains”. In time, Haakon had a law passed establishing that Yule celebrations were to take place at the same time as the Christians celebrated Christmas, “and at that time everyone was to have ale for the celebration with a measure of grain, or else pay fines, and had to keep the holiday while the ale lasted.”[9]

winter_seasonals_mainSo let me understand this.  I have to have ale and celebrate, else pay a fine?  Where do I sign up?

For that matter, I actually switch up my drinking hobby.  Throughout the year, I’m a die-hard wine drinker, but I enjoy IPA styles of beer. Not being very holiday oriented, so I never saw the joy in bothering with celebration.  In recent years, I’ve discovered Belgian style winter whits and ales to be enjoyable.  The spiced ones, having cardamom and traditional baking spices impart a nice flavor on the beers and the high alcohol content keeps me toasty.

I enjoy cinnamon candles more than any other time of the year.  Anything that spreads the concept of warmth to those who appear on my doorstep, I’m down with as my tradition.

I’ll ask again, what are yours?

You can bet Sonja and Derrick have their own traditions, but life wasn’t always this easy for the former spy and his lovely death metal vocalist. Buy their story now! 


Ritual Magic

I thought I’d explore another hook for this post because I’m learning
more about Wicca and Witchcraft along with the paranormal, and I’d pumaalready declared this blog open to whiskey, witches, cigars and the more primal element of animalistic urges some of us share.

I’ve also opined on Facebook that the thing linking all of my facebook friends together is ritual. Whiskey has a ritual, cigars are a ritual in themselves as are pipes, music has a rhythm that inspires ritual and those who don’t mind the magic in my life, understand it too, is a ritual.

Ritual to me has always been a point of focus.  The world itself spins out of control so much with everyday activity that trying to put ones mind in the right frame for what some call wishcraft becomes difficult. Burning Candle Learning the very basics of magic I was taught to stare at the flame of a lit candle and focus my attention on that and only that for a few minutes at a time.  Gradually, that time increased from five minutes to fifteen and I found my mind and the energy around me a little clearer.  Simple trick, but powerful, none the less.

I have a ritual when I write that allows me to focus.  I have a ritual as to how I drink whiskey and even how I light my cigars.  It all ties in to focusing my energy for that particular experience.

I mention the candle trick but there are others.  Some folks use visualization to change their realities, creating grandiose vision boards to put their mind’s energy in tune with their desires.   Using magazines, poster board or sites like Pinterest where you can journal creativity online.  I like that option better but many folks prefer the tactile with magazines and poster boards.  With focus, energies can be shifted to move help the greater parts of the universe help us to help ourselves.

When I wrote Sonja in Burning For Derrick as a witch who sings in a death metal band, I gave her the ability whiskeyto manipulate her audience through the power of her voice.

I established a light scene before her band opens up whereby a bottle of wine shatters on stage, in the darkness, then reassembles itself before disappearing.  The trick helps Sonja focus her energies on the excitement of the crowd and be a better performer.  Do you have a favorite ritual you do often?

Look out for Burning for Derrick, coming soon from Ardent Books!