Wednesday, June 26, 2013

My Little Demon

I have just recently started talking with folks about the fact that I "meddle with the Goetia." It seems and* daemonic sorceress? Sure! Why not?
this is surprising information for folks -- even for people who know me fairly well. Priestess of Aphrodite *

Natalie and I have both written about familiars, especially spirit (non-coropreal) familiars. As I wrote in one of those posts:

The word "angel" comes from the Greek ἄγγελος pronounced "angelos", which means messenger. "Demon" also comes from the Greek --  δαίμων pronounced daímōn, meaning nothing more or less than "spirit."  Neither was inherently benevolent, nor was the other malevolent. Can they be? Sure. I bet you can be nasty, too.

I went on to say that we feel that spirit conjuration (what can rightly be called "demonic conjuration") is a long-standing practice in the sort of sorcerous witchcraft that is practiced by people like us. Check out the American Folkloric Witchcraft blog for a better idea of the Craft we practice.

So, here we are, contacting helpful spirits through our talking board, and specifically getting in touch with the spirits who want to work with us. In a session by myself, I first spoke to the spirit I simply call "S." I learn right away that she is a spirit of the Goetia. I learn relatively soon that this spirit had been with me as a teenager as my beloved cat. I piece together that the spirit I had seen in my living room (and the black ghost cat my entire family and some roommates have seen) is also her. And I learn in the last month or so that she is included in Dee & Kelley's Enochian (angelic magick) tablets as one of the "Daughters of the Daughters of Light" -- listed there simply as S.

She's been with me since I was 17, and I have felt her presence for a very long time. She has taught me so much about Spirit (and about daemons, specifically). She has been a partner to Natalie and I as we undertook a hefty writing project -- The Witches' Key: The Sorcery of Solomonic Magick. This book is "the Goetia on the Goetia." (I'm working on formatting it now, and Natalie is working on illustrations. I'd like to have it done by the end of the summer, but that might be a stretch. Let's say: done by Samhain.)

I'd love to write and talk more about spirits here, for those who are interested. Expect a post or two on the topic as I continue working on this project.

We are fleshy spirits. Spiritual beings having a human experience.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Magical Herbalism Workshops by Laurelei and/or Natalie

I just added a slew of workshops to my Presentation Catalog, all related to the witch-y side of
Ferula Asfoetida
herbalism. In all cases, Natalie and I can present these classes together or separately. Just give us a shout if you want something awesome and herbal at your event.

The Way of the Woodwose -- The Path of Magical Herbalism
Plants offer so much to humanity -- food, shelter, spice, medicine, clothing, and more. Each of these is magical in itself; however, plants offer something beyond the physical experience, too. They give us a key into the realms of mysticism and magic that are the domain of religion and spirituality. Join Laurelei and Natalie for this introduction to magical herbalism and discuss the many ways in which herbs can transform your inner reality.

Incense Blending

 Sacred smoke is one of the quintessential elements of magical and mystical practice. Witches, magicians, seers, monks, and holy people of every religion have used smoke and fume as a method of sending their prayers to the heavens and of gaining inspiration from beyond the veil of the visinble world. In this hands-on workshop, Laurelei and Natalie will discuss the 5 basic ingredients of an excellent incense and then get our hands dirty by making some for a practical application. Everyone will come away from this class with a sample of loose blended incense and copious notes on how to make the best blends for their future needs.

Flying Ointment and Sabbat Wine

 Learn the art of herbal astral travel. Come and discuss with us the historical ways in which the Witches of old flew to the Sabbat at the Mountain, leaving their bodies safe at home -- or how they went out into the night as hares. Laurelei and Natalie will discuss the theory and history behind the very toxic plant poisons used in the past and also explore some safe (but effective) non-toxic alternatives for modern spirit flight.

Vision Brews

 Certain plants are (in)famous for their vision-inducing abilities -- as well as their deadly side effects. Chat with Laurelei and Natalie about the visionary poisons of old, and then we'll all explore several safe and strong herbs that pack a punch for opening psychic ability and developing seership.

Abramelin and the Formulas of High Magick

Ceremonial Magick concerns itself with alchemy on a number of levels. Transformation happens both within the magician and without. The working of Abramelin the Mage is one of the most famous workings of ceremonial magick, and the oil formula that is created from it is highly prized by magicians. Join Laurelei and Natalie as we explain the preparation of this oil and discuss its history and use in other magical formulations.

Traditional Oils and Waters of the American Folk Magic

 Fiery Wall of Protection, Florida Water, Hungary water, Black Cat Oil, Angel Water -- You'll come away from this workshop with your own formulary of potions used in American folk magic. Some are from Hoodoo, some from European folklore, others from the hills of the Ozarks and Appalachia. We'll discuss their uses, how to personalize and prepare them, and we'll even make one so that everyone comes away with a sample.

Gris-Gris, Paquettes, Putzi, and Pouches -- Bundles of Herbal Magic
The magical spell bag, by any other name, would still smell as .... Well, it would smell like magic, and that's the important thing. Magical practitioners of all sorts, on every continent where people live, have put potent items of a like nature together in a bundle to achieve a goal for its bearer. Protection, love, health, sleep, luck. After a thorough discussion on the sorts of dirts, herbs, and other objects usually included in these bundles, Natalie and Laurelei will provide bags to participants and let them choose from available materials to make their own pouches.

The Alraun -- A Plant Familiar

 Everyone knows the image of a Witch with a black cat familiar. But how many are aware of the wise woman with her mandrake spirit? The alraun is a carefully tended plant that acts as a spirit guide. Is it the spirit of the plant who offers wisdom and guidance? Or a spirit who inhabits the plant? Join Natalie and Laurelei in this discussion on the history and practical creation & tending of the alraun.