Journal Entry from Div, Trance, & Magic 2

Representative Journal Entry from Divination 2, Magic 2, or Trance 2

14 May 2014
Apollo Full Moon.
This was the Apollo full moon, so I wanted to bless our divination tools. Everyone was using sortilege so I had everyone pull one symbol from whatever system they use and give a brief interpretation. And it was awesome. We had something like 4 variations on sun and light, some in rebirth and new beginnings, some on gifts given or earned and some on the work of the journey. And then after everyone shared the meanings I wound them all together and it all fit so perfect.

Then we let the light radiate over and through our tools and into us. *shivers* the juju. It was awesome. There was that buzz inside yourself that happens when you really know the magic is working.

And, I totally forgot to turn on my recorder. I thought about it. Because I knew this would be a divination that wasn’t for me per say. And when it’s not for me its like a conduit and I don’t remember what I said. But it was awesome. And afterward each person was telling me how it all rang true so much for them. There’s bits and pieces, but it was not meant to be recorded apparently.

I wrote down all the symbols, so I can get close. (Nu, the strife-bearing gift; Sowilo, the sun/victory; Gebo, gift; Birch, new beginnings; Khi, fulfills the golden oracle; Gamma, Gaea the earth, ripe fruits of our labors; The Clinging, illumination and enlightenment; The magician, power/willpower and creativity; Eta, Helios who watches all watches you, the sun; 8 of Stones, apprenticeship and practice of skill; Ivy, the journey, guidance, and travel; 7 of Arrows, insecurity, and facing your doubts; Honeysuckle, lay down your burdens/have fun; Iota, there is sweat, work hard; Rebirth, new beginnings) But not the exact words that I said.

It was something like “with the bright like of the sun illuminating our path, we have been blessed with many gifts. It is now time to take these gifts and focus our willpower and creativity to work on and practice our skills as we set down our burdens so that we might pick up burdens anew as we, face our fears and set out on our new, enlightened path”

Everything just seemed to fit together so perfectly. The script for the working is below, and the whole thing was couched within the basic Hellenic COoR I use.

Set-up:
– all participants have divination tools
– three burning candles with enough space in the center for all tools to be placed OR if outside, space for everyone to stand around the Fire in a circle
– offerings of bay or oil

We come together now in the presence of all the Theoi, but most especially Apollo Mantikos, Apollo Aphetor. Prophetic One, Giver of Oracles.
Klûthi mou, Apollon! (Hear me, Apollo!)
Elthé moi, Apollon! (Come to me, Apollo!)
Deûro Mákar! (Hither, Blessed One!)

We come with our tools, and we come with open heart and empty mind. We ask that you give us the gift of the Mantis, and the gift of your blessing, that our Sight might be improved.

*All Speak Together or Call & Response*
Phoebos, Radiant One,
Shine your light down on me.
Mantikos, Prophetic One,
Send your truth down to me.
Aphetor, Oracle Giver
Send your wisdom down to me.
Proopsios, Farseeing One
Send you visions down to me
Leskhenorios, Converser
Send your voice down to me
Loxias, Speaker
Send your words down to me.
Pythian Apollo, of Delphi,
Let your Oracle speak through me.

*if all are using a sortilege, each person draws a single lot and interprets (otherwise each person seeks an omen in whatever manner they generally use); whoever took the rite’s omen should make sure they are drawing lots from the full set for the working*

We have received the blessings of [all omens].

Apollo Mantikos, Prophetic One,
I seek to know of these omens.
Let your truth be told through me.

Apollo Aphetor, Oracle Giver,
I seek to know of these gifts.
Let your wisdom flow through me.

Apollo Leskhenorios, Converser,
I seek to know of these messages.
Let your voice speak through me.

*Seer makes offering of Oil and/or bay*

These blessings and wisdom that we have received, when taken together, grant us [interpretation of all omens together]. Reflect a moment on these gifts and how they pertain to your Sight.

*pause*

We now take our tools of divination and ask that they be infused with the gifts we have received.

*tools are placed in the light of the fire*

*All Speak Together or Call & Response*
We stand at the center,
In the light of the moon, in its fullness,
And by the light of the Fire, and the truth it reveals.
We stand infused with the blessings,
In the presence of the Kindreds,
With open heart, and empty mind.
We call now for the powers of the Mantis (Seer)
to fill us, and radiate over our tools,
Blessing us with the gift of Sight.

*envision the fire’s light filling the tools to blinding capacity*

Fire, Bright Fire!
Light, Shining Light!
Truth, Radiant Truth!
(repeat 3x)

Our tools thus blessed, and our Sight thus confirmed.
We each now stand, mantis in our own right.

Esto!

My Vocational Statement as a Consecrated Priest

What calls you to become an ADF Consecrated Priest? How does this step fit with your calling as an ADF Priest?

Much of my work as an Ordained ADF Priest has been focused on a more local level, with only a bit of branching out beyond that. However, I keep feeling more and more of a drive to expand my work in such a way that I can serve more people, that I can do more for a broader audience, that I can help more folks feel the connection they crave and build the practice they want.

My Vocation Statement for Ordination included the following statement: “For any who seek the flame, I will act as a guide on their path, aiding where I can, challenging when I need to, and supporting always.” My call to become an ADF Consecrated Priest is a furthering of this call. I can continue to expand what I’m doing, and continue to develop skills, both internally and externally, that will allow me to continue to serve a broader community. It feels like a natural next step for me, my practice, and my service.

How have the specializations you chose within the CTP prepared you for the deeper work of an ADF Consecrated Priest?

The two specializations I chose, Leadership and Ritualist, reflect some of my interests that I’d like to develop further, though I’d also like to take on Professional Helping Skills at some point. I think leadership skills are important for all our priests, as we’re all viewed as leaders to at least some degree. Considering that I want to continue to grow in my leadership roles both locally and beyond, the self-reflection parts of this course were particularly beneficial. They helped me to recognize my leadership style and its strengths and weaknesses. This allows me to better compensate in situations where my leadership style is not as well heard or recognized. I am a gentle leader, and so in contexts with lots of loud and outspoken individuals, I have to very consciously focus on holding my own so that I am heard.

The Ritualist specialization I actually chose more because I’m interested in the 3rd Circle course than specific interest in this one. Comparative ritual theory fascinates me, and I use basics of it often in planning rituals. I’m looking forward to that course to learn more. With this course, while foreign language interests me, in most rituals I find it’s impact is minimal, or possibly detrimental if not well planned and scripted, to the overall effect of the ritual. I do like to include hearth flavor in rituals with the hearth’s language, but the translation needs to also be included, or the ritual has a tendency to lose its focus, especially in large groups.

Both of these specializations will help me continue my growth as I deepen the work I’m doing as a Consecrated Priest. The Leadership skills will help with the more in depth outer work I foresee doing with the broader community. The benefits from the Ritualist skills will likely be seen in my broader work with the community, but they will also significantly help me continue to deepen my own practice, and give me a broader knowledge base from which I can plan rituals, draw inspiration, and interpret omens and spiritwork.

What does your inner work look like? How has your inner work prepared you for greater outer work with the community of ADF?

My personal work involves a fairly large amount of self-reflection on how I’m working both to maintain my practice and working with my community. I consider how that aligns with my values, ethics, and motivations. This has been, and will continue to be, something that benefits both me and others who find themselves in similar situations. I have found myself having more conversations with folks considering the upper level study programs, and by sharing my own experiences and struggles that I have processed through, I am more able to be a sounding board and mentor to those still working through them.

Other inner work that do is continued trance work and continuing to build relationships with various spirit allies. Part of this inner work takes place during the regular clergy Mound work, and part of it takes place during other trance experiences. Having a strong set of spirit allies to back me up and provide inspiration is useful in serving the greater community because it not only gives me ideas for new things to try and how to implement them, but also allows me to tap into more energy when leading rituals and workings.

I find I am called on regularly for both minor and major magical workings, and because my inner work involves a fair amount of personal magic, I am better able to work off-the-cuff for immediate requests as well as better plan major workings for specific purposes. I lean on my spirit allies when I need ideas for how to get something done. I’ve also been continuing to experiment with different methods that work well for me, such as sigil work and more types of thaumaturgic magic that in the past I haven’t dabbled too much in. This will continue to allow me to serve the folk by choosing methods that speak to the requesting individual or group, and that I have personally worked with before.

The last bit of inner work that I do is maintaining my personal devotional practice. It has ebbed and flowed with changing life situations, but continued to be a part of my practice. In general, it takes the form of a very brief devotional at my home shrine, where I light my Hestia flame, burn some incense, and honor the Earth and Three Kindreds. Often times my daughter joins me. When she doesn’t, I am able to spend a bit more time at my altar and add in an omen-taking, praise for my patrons and spirit allies, and/or a more in-depth working. Maintaining this level of inner work keeps me centered, balanced, and in-tune with the spirits so that I can approach the clergy work I do from a more active and centered place. In addition, the struggles and adjustments I’ve had to make with my personal practice have given me a better background for helping others work through similar struggles and adjustments.

What further skills would you like to develop as an ADF Consecrated Priest, and how will these skills help grow Our Druidry?

One of the things I noted in my journals during the past two years is the general lack of good religious materials written specifically for a pagan audience, to say nothing of materials written with a focus on our particular flavor of paganism. I want to work more on producing materials for those who aren’t local to me, though I recognize that the local crew will also benefit. This includes articles, books, study guides, and video materials to name a few. I want to focus on making materials that are accessible to all and that fill the various niches and holes that I’ve noticed in published works. This will help grow Our Druidry because it will put our name out there in conjunction with quality and valuable work.

I would also like to continue to deepen my personal practice where magic, trancework, and divination overlap. I would like to continue my experimentation with new magical techniques, and work on learning and polishing skills in that area that I’ve only just started to read about and touch on. By learning these new methods and techniques I’ll be able to use those skills for others, as well as begin explaining and teaching others to use them.

I’d also like to deepen my trancework further, and work on carrying this over into sharing methods of building relationships with spirit allies. Additionally, the information I gain through both trancework and divination will allow me to share the useful bits with our community as a whole.

Solar Eclipse 2017 Sigil Work

I decided that for the solar eclipse in 2017, aka the “Great American Eclipse”, that I would be doing some sigil work.  As a quick primer of what sigil work is, the idea is you have a focus, often a phrase, that you convert into a symbol.  You then “charge” the symbol in some way before “firing” it.  The process is designed to move the focus of your work from your conscious mind into the collective unconscious so that it can activate and your focus can come to fruition.  In practice, this means you want your sigil to be simple enough to draw, but complex enough that you can’t draw it again from memory.  You’d have to reference the original to be able to do it.

 

So, I gave some thought on what kind of magic I wanted to do in relation to what the solar eclipse may already be empowering.  The Sun can represent what is easily known, the conscious mind, logic and reasoning.  The Moon can represent what is typically hidden, the unconscious, emotion and intuition.  So, in this case, my focus is allowing my intuitive brain to take precedence over my logical brain, specifically for the purpose of enhancing further magical work and devotional relationships that I may develop over the next 6 months.

 

My next step was to actually create my sigil.  I use a stylized letter elimination method for creating my sigils.  Because “sigils are monograms of thought” (Austin Osman Spare) I took my focus: “Allow my intuitive brain to take precedence over my logical brain, specifically for the purpose of enhancing further magical work and devotional relationships that I may develop over the next 6 months” and converted it to the simple phrase “Intuition over Logic.”  I then thought it would be cool to put Inituition in the Moon, and Logic in the Sun, and draw them overlapping.  literally Intuition over Logic.  Next was to remove repeat letters from each word, and stylize them into my symbols.

 

a stylized symbol that resembles the moon passing across the sun with symbols in each planetary body.

 

My symbol now created, now I needed to transfer it to a pinhole camera.  I transferred it to a piece of foil and punched out the design with a thumb tack.  When the eclipse happens later today I will be charging my sigil as the eclipse occurs, nearing totality.  (We’ll have 86% totality here).  At the point of max coverage I will fire my sigil off, releasing my focus into the unconscious so that it can manifest.

 

the sigil punched into a paper plate held out in the sun and projecting the image onto a piece of paper

 

If you desire to do similar work, you can either create your own sigil for your personal focus, or you are welcome to print off this design and use it as a template for punching out your own magical pinhole camera.

November Prayers: Day 7

When the black dog has her claws hooked in you,
threatening to never let go,
trying to pull you under, into the darkness…
When the world is too loud, and too bright,
overwhelming all your senses,
pushing you to escape into the void…
When the night seems to go on forever,
dragging into the black,
until it seems even the stars have lost their light…
Then is when the sky will lighten,
Then is when the cloud-cover will dissipate,
Then is when the Dawn will come.
So, after the storm has raged,
go to where the Waters flow more freely now,
won and blessed for you,
and find your peace in nature.

November Prayers: Day 5

A Meal Blessing of Thanks:
We thank the Earth Mother, first and foremost,
for the bounty she has shared.
We also thank:
The Ancestors, for teaching us their ways,
The Nature Spirits, for sharing of themselves,
And The Shining Ones, for walking with us.
To all those spirits we love,
Come, join us at our feast,
and be welcomed by our hospitality.

November Prayers: Day 4

Darkness is spread like a blanket across the sky
as I call out to Hypnos to let me sip from his horn.
Come to me, Mist Cloaked one,
and work your magic on me.
Bring your brothers and your sons,
The Oneiroi, Morpheus first among them,
to share their magic of sweet dreams.
A deep and peaceful sleep I desire:
Come to me, Hypnos, Come!

November Prayers: Day 3

When a tempest rages around my being,
When a maelstrom spins beyond control,
I stand centered, firm and grounded, at my core.
Rational thought continues to guide me,
my emotions acknowledged, but not my yoke.
For the God of the Deep, Lord of the Raging Sea,
I thank you as I continue my work as your devotee:
You’ve taught me perseverance in the face of turbulence;
You’ve taught me to when and where to unleash my temper;
You’ve taught me that all things ebb and flow,
and that in that cycle, balance can  be found.
Poseidon, Earth Shaker, Wave Bringer,
To you I give my deep praise and heartfelt thanks.