Embracing the Shadow to Release the Light

For the last 3 years I have had the privilege of spending Yule with my Hedgeriding sistars on a beautiful property on Gadubanud country at Apollo Bay. This time is in honour of the deep, dark wisdom of Winter Solstice & perfect for sitting in circles to process life as we craft & cook & tell stories. With fires burning & incense filling the air, we work our insights into crowns & magickal pouches & mommets & baked goods, & in doing so we are able to ground & centre ourselves around the growth that is available at such moments.

The reality of multiple perspectives & how they can influence our sense of self was a conversation that taught me a lot this Yule. It is easy to get lost in the way that others see the world they share with us & the distraction created with this can often elicit feelings of frustration or fear or futility… potentially a very disempowering experience.

One magickal craft that helped me to regain & reinforce my own perspective was the Yule Pouch. We began by crafting a pouch to hold the working, something that is created with what is available & woven to appeal to our personal aesthetics. Then we fill the pouch with symbolic representations of the dreams that we have for our year to come, such as a clove of garlic for protection against sickness or a small fruit to ensure that our efforts bring us an abundant return or words written on a bay leaf to hold wishes. During the Yule bonfire we take a moment to energise the pouches in a quiet, meditative state, & then they are sealed. These pouches are placed in a significant place in the home to radiate the contained magick throughout the year.

The pouch that I made last year was emptied to be refilled this year. In doing this I realised just how successful my last Yule Pouch was as it hung above my bed since the time it was sealed… all that I had asked for had come to be! It is subtle & gentle magick that I highly recommend.

As I write this, today is the shortest day & longest night & I am preparing to celebrate this auspicious time with my partner & my children. We shall feast & make a small altar in the lounge room that we can assemble our mattresses around for a slumber party. The night will be filled with movies & stories & a few simple spells…

Dreaming Stone Spell

Take a stone that feels right & hop into your bed with it. Hold it in your left hand (right if you are left-handed) & listen to what it has to say to you. Then hold it in your right hand (left if you are left-handed) & dream about the life that you wish to be living. Let this dream flow from your mind, down through your arm & hand & into the stone. Give the stone a kiss & place it on a dish of salt beside your head while you sleep on the longest night. In the morning, place the stone in your pillow case so that it is under your head every night as you dream. Journal your dreams in the days/weeks/months to come or discuss them with your friends & family. In this way you are able to access the insights that you need to manifest the life that you dream of. Toss the salt outside your bedroom window. When you feel the time is right, cleanse the stone for reuse or return it to the place that it came from (eg. earth or sea etc.).

Wishing with Bay

Make a fire or light a candle & sit beside it thinking about what you wish for more than anything in the world. This wish must be something are willing to work towards & make sacrifices for it to come to be. Write the wish onto a bay leaf, read it out 3 times & then burn it in the flame of the fire or candle. Let the ash drift where it may.

Whatever your adventures are for this Winter Solstice, may they be blessed.

HAPPY YULE!!

Alison xxx

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