YULE – FOR MEN

YULE – FOR MEN

The cauldron is placed by the south candle with an unlit candle in it. Wreath
the cauldron with Holly, Ivy and Mistletoe.

Stand before the altar with arms upraised, say:

“Queen of the Moon, Queen of the Sun
Queen of the Heavens, Queen of the Stars
Queen of the Waters, Queen of the Earth
Bring to us the child of promise!
It is the great Mother who gives birth to Him
It is the Lord of Life who is born again
Darkness and tears are set aside when the sun shall come up early!”

Take a candle from the altar and light the candle in the cauldron, say:

“Golden Sun of hill and mountain
Illumine the Land, illumine the World
Illumine the Seas, illumine the Rivers
Sorrows be laid, joy to the World!
Blessed be the great Goddess
Without beginning, without ending
Everlasting to eternity
Io Evo! He! Blessed Be!
Io Evo! He! Blessed Be!…”

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The Birthday of the Light

The Birthday of the Light

On the Christmas morning comics page
Two people slogging through the crowds of shoppers
pause to ask one another
“Isn’t this all supposed to be somebody’s birthday?”

Yes, it is.
This is the birthday of the Light.

Different people see the Light differently;
To many the Light is a babe in a manger,
A child destined to grow into a great teacher and healer,
Bringing the light of love to a world lost in darkness.

To others the light is the light of freedom,
Seen in the miracle of a lamp burning
Far longer than its meager supply of oil should have lasted
After the conquerors were driven from the Temple.

And still others celebrate winter sunlight
Bringing the primise of springtime
And reminding us to look at endings
As opportunities for new beginnings.

But even though we see the light differently
And hold different days in this season sacred to it,
Let us all look into the light together
To see opportunities for new beginnings
For a world of freedom and healing and love.

Thomas G. Digby

Yule Lore

Yule Lore

Long, long ago when the earth was new
And mankind was younger yet.
There came a time of the dark and cold.
Let never a soul forget.

There came a time when the ice drew nigh,
And the sky with snow turned gray.
And the earth grew hard, and the trees were bare,
And the timber wolf howled in the brae.

Huddled and cold the tribesmen sat
Round fires of peat and of moss. And dreamed of the warm time, dreamed of the Lord,
And mourned for the Lady’s loss.

For with the harvest had come the Lord
And laid his body down,
To pay with his life for the earth’s repast,
To yield to the Holly his crown.

As the deer and the boar bow down to the bow,
And the stag consents to the kill,
So the Lord came down to the altar knife
Earth’s riches his people to fill.

Then came the Lady across the moor
And down from the lonely hill.
Saying, “What have you done with my wondrous Lord,
And why did you have to kill?”

Then in anger she turned from the children of men
And in anger she went away.
And she wrapped her cloak around her head
And she wrapped the sky with gray.

Cold grew the world with the Lady’s grief
And her cold tears fell as the snow.
And the rivers and lakes were frozen still
And the fires of peat burned low.

“Oh, what have we done,” the people cried,
“To have slain our own dear Lord!
And how will we live, and how will we fare
Without the Lady’s regard.”

The world grew colder each passing day
And the sun fell down from the sky.
And darkness eternal lay over the earth
And the people began to die.

They gathered together there on the plain,
Every woman and man and child,
And prayed to the Lady then to relent
And prayed for the land to heal.

But nothing came to answer their cries,
But dire wolf, lion, and bear.
And the people cried out with a terrible shout
But the Lady refused to hear.

Then from among them a man stood forth,
A harper of no little fame,
And he said, “I shall go to the Summer Land’s shores
And I’ll bring the Lord back again.”

“And how will you do this thing you will do,
And how will you bring it about?”
“I will play on my harp, ’til the gates open wide
And the Lord Death shall let us out.”

“Old fool, old fool”, the wise ones cried,
“Oh never this thing shall be.
For no one goes to the Summer Land’s shores,
And returns to the land of the free.”

“But I shall go”, the old man said,
“And these things I claim shall be.
Or else the world in the dark will die,
And the people no longer be.”

Then he took his harp and he took his staff,
And he bent his head to the west.
And he walked and he ran for six days and three,
And never he stopped to rest.

He ran till he came to the frozen shore
of the mighty western sea.
And the frozen tears coursed down his cheeks
For never a boat had he.

Then the man cried out in a terrible shout,
“Aquila, Lord of the Air,
Hear my plea and answer me
And bear me over there.”

Out of the skies on wings of fire
Came Aquila, the Lord of the Air,
“Saying who shall call on Aquila’s name,
And bid me to carry them there”.

“I”, said the old man, “I called thy name,
For my people the need is great.
And I must hie to the Summer Land’s shores
If I would avert their fate.”

Then Aquila came down to the shores of the sea,
And he came to the old mans hand.
And he said, “I shall bear thee in honor and pride
To the shores of the Summer Land.”

Then off they flew in the night dark sky
Neath a cavern of stars and air.
And at last they came to the Summer Land’s shores
And Aquila alighted there.

“My thanks for your aid”, the old man cried,
“Now fly and avert your fate.”
But proud Aquila dipped down his head
And said, it for him was too late.

For from the Summer Land none return,
Until it is time to be born.
And now in the dark of the Lady’s regard,
There will be no glorious morn.

“Then come,” said the harper, “Come with me!
And we’ll seek for the Lord of the Wild.”
And he struck his harp and he raised his voice,
And the shades of the dead they smiled.

They searched and they searched the Summer Land,
And the harp made a wondrous sound,
Til they came to a grove of oak, ash and thorn
And a mighty stag they found.

“Whence came you then”, cried the mighty stag,
“And why have you called to me.
For I was the Lord of the Greenwood once.
And now you’ve awakened me.”

Then the harper knelt, and he bowed his head,
And he cried, “Oh Lord, return.
For thy people die without thy aid
And the fires refuse to burn.”

“Thy Lady mourns and her frozen tears,
Have turned the world to ice.
We accepted gladly your wondrous gifts,
With no thought to the sacrifice.”

The stag he wept for his people’s woe,
And he bent his lordly head.
Ah, glad would I be to go with you hence,
But this is the land of the dead.

And none can leave here until the time,
When death shall let them go.
And I must stay til the stars shall say
That it is time to go.

Then the harper sang and he played his harp,
With ever a song so sweet.
That even the Lord of Death came round
And sat at the Harper’s feet.

And when he’d done, Death came to him,
“Saying ask of me any boon,
For thou hast brought me joy and peace
In my lands of endless noon.”

Then up spoke the Harper, “Lord grant me one gift
And set the Forest Lord free.
Lest all people shall perish beneath the snow,
This shall I ask of thee.”

Then Death bowed his head, and he said “He may go,
Though it is not time yet to be.
Yet I have promised for thy harp’s sake
And therefore, so mote it be.”

Death then turned to the mighty stag
And he raised his withered hand.
Saying, “Thou art free for the Harper’s sake,
Depart from the Summer Land.”

Then in the place of the wild beast lay
A tiny newborn child.
And the Harper and eagle in homage knelt,
And the little baby smiled.

The Harper lifted him up in his arms,
And strode to Aquila’s side.
And he said, “I beg you, one last time,
For the Lord’s sake let us ride.”

Then Aquila rose from the Summer Land
With Harper and child on his back.
And he turned his head to the eastern lands
And he sailed into infinite black.

Nine days and nine, Aquila flew
Til he came to the cold, dark plain.
And there he carried the man and child
That the sun might come again.

Then down from the darkness they came with the wind
And among the people they stood.
And the people came forth to see this child
As the Harper had said they would.

Then the people called out the Lady’s name,
And the newborn baby cried.
And the Lady looked down on the gathered throng
And she saw the child and sighed.

“Ah”, said the Lady, “Here is my Lord
Surely come back to me.
And where are the brave ones who challenged Death
That this wondrous thing might be?”

Then forth came Aquila and Harper both
And stood at the Lady’s feet.
“Thou art the bravest and staunchest of friends
That ever I chanced to meet.”

“For thou hast challenged the gates of Death
With never a thought of reward.
And thou hast won thy peoples life
For saving my own sweet Lord.”

“For thou, Aquila, a king shall be
And I give thee a crown of light.”
Then she stretched forth her hand upon his head
And turned his feathers white.

“And thou, dear Harper, shall be my own
And sit here at my feet.
And a nightingale sang where the old man stood,
With ever a song so sweet.”

Then spake the Lady, to those who heard,
“By Fire and Fir and Yew;
I vow on my honor that never again,
Will the light depart from you.”

“For though the night grows long and dark,
And the sun be hid from view,
Yet the Lord will come with mid-winter’s day
And the light bring back to you.”

Then she bade them build on the frozen plain
A mighty and magical ring
Of standing stone and sturdy oak
And she bade the people sing.

And she said, “By this mark you shall be sure
That to my promise I hold,
For when the sun on this stone shall sit
Then you’ll know an end of the cold.”

“Down and down the dark shall come,
but on that special day,
The sun shall climb once more in the sky.
And the heavens be blue not gray.”

Then the people knelt and bowed their heads,
And when they looked again,
The Lady was gone, and the Harper too,
Gone from the world of men.

And in the place where the Lady stood,
The rose of winter grew.
And overhead where the sun shown bright,
A mighty eagle flew.

And thus my children, thus is the tale
Of how the world turned cold.
And how the summer was carried back
By the Harper and Eagle bold.

Copyright © Lark 1992

The Yule Log

The Yule Log
by Lila

The tradition of the Yule logs dates back millennia. The origin of the word Yule seems to originate from the Anglo Saxon word for sun and light. People used to burn a yule log on the Winter Solstice in December. The Winter Solstice is the day of the year with the shortest amount of daylight. Yule is celebrated by fire, which provides a dual role of warmth and keeping evil spirits away. Many people thought that evil spirits were more likely to wander the earth on the longest night of the year. All night bonfires and hearth fires kept evil at bay and provided gathering places for folks to share feasts and stories.

Winter Solstice marks the sun’s victory over darkness; the days would now grow longer. The cinders from the burnt log were thought to protect homes from lightning and the evil powers of the devil. The ashes were also sprinkled on the surrounding fields to ensure good luck for the coming year’s harvest. The largest remaining part of the log was kept safe to kindle next year’s fire.

The Yule log has waned in popularity with the advent of electric heaters and wood stoves. With no access to a hearth, fireplace or fire pit, modern folks are losing a sacred tradition. Today, we may still partake of the Yule Log tradition by creating a smaller version as a table ornament, embellished with greenery and candles, or the popular Yule log cake. As we eat a slice, we can imagine taking in the protective properties of the log.

Many enjoy the practice of lighting the Yule Log. If you choose to burn one, select a log and carve or chalk upon it a figure of the Sun (a rayed disc) or the Horned God (a horned circle). Set it alight in the fireplace at dusk, on Yule. This is a graphic representation of the rebirth of the God within the sacred fire of the Mother Goddess. As the log burns, visualize the Sun shining within it and think of the coming warmer days. Traditionally, a portion of the Yule Log is saved to be used in lighting next year’s log. This piece is kept throughout the year to protect the home.

Whether you are burning a log or creating a centrepiece, different woods may be used to produce different effects:
Aspen: invokes understanding of the grand design
Birch: signifies new beginnings
Holly: inspires visions and reveals past lives
Oak: brings healing, strength, and wisdom, symbol of the Oak king, the New year
Pine: signifies prosperity and growth
Willow: invokes the Goddess to achieve desires
Decorate your log with the any of the following items:
bright green needles of fir represents the birth of the new year
dark green needles of yew represent death of the waning year
vines of ivy or birch branches represent the Goddess
sprigs of holly with red berries represent the Holly king of the dying year
As you light the Yule log chant the following:

As the yule log is kindled
so is the new year begun
as it has been down through the ages
an unending cycle of birth, death, and rebirth
every ending is a new beginning
May the Yule log burn
May all good enter here
May there be wheat for bread
and vats full of wine
(or may we never hunger may we never thirst)

When the log has almost completely burned, collect a small piece of the Yule log (dip in a bucket of water to ensure it is completely out) wrap carefully and keep somewhere in the home for safety and protection.

collect some of the cold ashes and store in a glass bottle. The ash can be used for spells of protection and amulets. The remainder of the Yule ash can be scattered over fields or gardens to ensure fertility in the spring.

Pauline Campanelli; Wheel of the Year

Lila is an initiate in The Sacred Three Goddess school. She lives on a mountain in beautiful British Columbia with her husband, four cats, two ferrets and other varied critters of nature. She spends her time communing with the Faerie folk and long walks by the river.

Invoking the Holly King

Greenman Comments & Graphics=

Today we do bid Hail to our beloved Holly King
With these ancient carols, we do again sing
He who is called Father Christmas is returning yet again
As the Solstice’s longest night has finally begun
We await you, Santa Claus, Lord of Winter
To honor you on this day that you always were
Saint Nicholas, patron of children on Gaia’s sphere
This invocation, we pray you do hear
Come bless us, upon this season of the Yuletide
Great Holly King as you fly upon your sleigh ride
Whether your gifts to us be physical or spiritual
We know that they will always be most magical
Grateful, because we know your blessings’ great worth
We offer a blessing of our own — Peace on Earth!

by Ginger Strivelli

Gypsy Magic

‘Twas the night before Yule

 

‘Twas the night before Yule, and all through the Coven,
The cookies were baked and removed from the oven.
The bayberry candles were lit on the table,
The altar was wrapped in a new cloth of sable.

The children were nestled, all snug in their beds,
While visions of Yuletime danced in their heads.
Their stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that some presents soon would be there!

With Rocker in his new robe, and I in mine,
We were asking our Goddess her blessing divine.
When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
We sprang from our Circle to see what was the matter.

Away to the window, tripping over my sash,
My eyes were a-glamoured with a bright silver flash.
The moon on the breasts of the Goddess and God
Drew my eyes to behold the blessed Circle they trod.

When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But the manifestations of all those we hold Dear.
The physical forms of those whom we pray to,
Even Saint Nick, and his miniature sleigh, too!

Jehovah, Mohammed, Shiva, Hera and Thor.
Zeus, Freya, Brahma, and many, many more.
All the Spiritual Entities who’d ever been mentioned.
Even some, like dear Loki, who sowed seeds of dissension.

They greeted each other with smile, warm and sweet.
Then, forming a Circle, they all took a seat.
With multiple Voices all joined as One,
The Corners were Called. And, when that was done.

The Chalice was passed from Hand to Hand.
Then, a blanket of silence enfolded the land.
A crystal clear Voice began to hold sway.
Which Deity spoke? I could not say.

But, clearly, I heard all the love in that Voice.
It caused my tired heart to take flight and rejoice.
“Our Children, it seems, have missed the whole point.
“We now join together, their hearts to anoint.

“Pour all of Our love O’er their hearts of stone.
“Let them see that together they’re never alone!
“Show them it matters not which of Us that they choose.
“Their sad hate and mistrust cause each of Us to lose!”

As I stood there transfixed, I could suddenly see
If we all stand as one, what a world this could be!
Put ALL of our differences well behind us.
Let the love of the Gods enfold and remind us.

We ARE all the same, though varied our skins.
We all dream the same dreams, we all sin the same sins.
With a look of enlightenment etched on my face,
I beheld all the Gods in Their glory and grace!

They all bowed Their heads then said “So mote it be!”
They all smiled at each Other bestowing winks on me.
One by One they disappeared from my sight.
Just the Goddess and God were left in the light.

As slowly They twinkled, fading by degree,
“Happy Yuletide to all!!
Blessed be times three!”

~Written by Mary, a.k.a. Wandering Poet, a.k.a.littlebit~

Permission to reprint granted to all who keep keep this credit line by the author

How About A Little Humor – Women Compared To Men :)

Women Compared To Men


Women

Women have strengths that amaze men. They carry children, they carry hardships, they carry burdens, but they hold happiness, love and joy.

They smile when they want to scream. They sing when they want to cry.

They cry when they are happy and laugh when they are nervous.

Women wait by the phone for a “safe at home call” from a friend after a              snowy drive home.

They are child care workers, executives, attorneys, stay-at-home moms,              biker babes, and your neighbors.

They wear suits, jeans, and they wear uniforms.

They fight for what they believe in. They stand up for injustice.

They walk and talk the mile to get their children in the right schools and for getting their family the right health care.

They go to the doctor with a frightened friend.

Women are honest, loyal, and forgiving.

They are smart, knowing that knowledge is power. But they still know how              to use their softer side to make a point.

Women want to be the best for their family, their friends, and themselves.

Their hearts break when a friend dies.

They have sorrow at the loss of a family member, yet they are strong when they think there is no strength left.

A woman can make a romantic evening unforgettable.

Women come in all sizes, in all colors and shapes.

They live in homes, apartments and cabins.

They drive, fly, walk, run or e-mail you to show how much they care about              you.

The heart of a woman is what makes the world spin!

Women do more than just give birth. They bring joy and hope. They give              compassion and ideals.

They give moral support to their family and friends. And all they want              back is a hug, a smile and for you to do the same to people you come in contact with.

Men

Men are good at lifting heavy stuff.


“Whatever you give a woman, she will make greater.  Give her sperm she will make a baby.  Give her a house she will give you a home.  Give her groceries she will give you a meal.  Give her a smile she will give you her heart. She multiplies and enlarges what she is given. So if you give her any crap, be ready to receive a ton of shit.”

 

Turok’s Cabana

Daily Feng Shui Tip for Dec. 20th: ‘Go Caroling Day?’

Is it music to your ears to know that today is ‘Go Caroling Day?’ Making music is not only good for your ears, it’s also great for bringing balance to the rest of the body. And the ‘Carol of the Bells’ can bring that same beautiful balance, peace and prosperity to your home too. Traditions throughout time have told us that bells cleanse the exterior environment. Legends maintain that the sound of the bell can actually positively affect the environments surrounding each of us. These sounds ostensibly purify the molecules of our external space and acts as a strong and powerful detoxifier of existing negative energies. Sleigh bells and silver bells, Tibetan or Balinese; it doesn’t matter what kind of bell is tolling, as long as it is toiling and detoxing for you.

By Ellen Whitehurst for Astrology.com