Winter Solstice

The Winter Solstice festival is known as Yule in many circles, the root of this word in Old Norse means wheel & it represents the lowest point of the wheel of the year… when waning becomes waxing. This is the time when Mother Night encircles the Sun in her loving arms for the longest time during his cycle, & she returns him to us renewed & full of hope. As the Sun cycle waxes new, I will be spending 12 days in celebration of the returning light with candles lit, fires burning, feasting, story telling, baking & camping out in the living room with my children working dream incubation spells. Here are some ideas for your Winter Solstice celebrations…

Incense Blend…

I will be filling my home with this wonderful blend for the whole festival time to keep my spirit adrift & to open my heart & blood to the potential of this time.

Juniper berries

Frankincense resin

Damiana leaves

Dragon’s Blood resin

Cinnamon bark

 

Dream Incubation…

This is great to do with children to honour this time of year. We place mattresses in the living area so that all of our heads are angled to a central point & set up this spell in the middle.

As the Sun sets on the longest night, write or draw your wishes on a piece of paper. Fold it once, set it at the head of your bed & place a stone on top of it (we use smokey quartz or moonstone). In the center of these wishes place a bowl of sacred water (or water from a natural source, or filtered tap water at the very least) with lavender flowers in it.

Before you go to sleep, take turns whispering your wishes into the bowl of water & as you rise in the morning, discuss your dreams from the night before & how they may be clues for making your wishes come true.

After your Winter Solstice celebrations, return the water & lavender to nature, bury your wishes under a tree & carry your stones with you or keep them under your pillow.

 

And from the inspiring Michelle Duke-

Yule Log…

The longest night is a wonderful time to go deep within, to reflect, to enter the womb of creation. Seek out those parts of yourself that have been long forgotten, lost, unloved, & prepare to reawaken them from their slumber.

Gather together- Corn Husk, Cinnamon, Clove, Ginger, Nutmeg, Sandalwood, Frankincense, Orange rind

Fill the corn husk with the herbs & any other symbolic things that you would like to burn, for example written words or hair. Wrap twine around it to create a log shape. Toss the Yule Log into your Winter Solstice fire or burn as a smudge for your home.

)O(

Mabon Incense

This lovely blend was developed last Full Moon during a session with one of my students. She was put on the spot & asked to come up with an incense blend for Mabon without any warning & within a reasonable amount of time. Later, as it was burning, I was called so quickly to journey that I lay down & had a most amazing experience! Burn this blend when you wish to make haste through the veil & journey with whatever you are seeking clarity for…. Mabon blessings to you all.

Jianne’s Mabon Incense Blend – Cinnamon, Clove, Eyebright, Blue Cornflower, Damiana, Frankincense, Dalia, Geranium, Comfrey Root, Orris Root & Dragon’s Blood.

)O(

Winter Solstice Incense Blend

On the Longest Night a blend of herbs was channeled & grounded up for burning during the Moonweavers Arcana Coven Solstice of Winter workshop. It was gentle & powerful. It was able to raise consciousness, deepen awareness, clear the energies & hold the space, all the while keeping us focused & tuned into the festivities of Yule.

Juniper berries

Frankincense resin

Bay leaf

Wormwood leaf

Bloodroot

Dragon’s Blood

Myrrh resin

Sandalwood

Orange essential oil

Amber resin

Please note that this blend is strong so keep a bit of distance from the smoke & have a small flow of air through the space.

)O(

FLORIDA WATER

My introduction to Florida Water came through a wonderful journey by Silver Raven Wolf into the mysteries of Hedgewitchery1.  In this instance, it was used as a cleansing tool at the beginning of one of the rituals. Preparing the Florida Water for this ritual was amazing as the smells filled my kitchen & lifted the energy of all who walked through. (See below for one of her recipes)

A quick internet search revealed to me that Florida Water was formulated in America in 1808, consisting of lavender, clove & bergamot. It was said to be used for offerings & purification, particularly in spells used “to remove unwanted thought forms & heavy vibrations, to encourage the display of emotions, to suppress those who talk too much & to calm places where an excess of energy is present”2.

The name of this formula comes from the myth that there is a Fountain of Youth in Florida3, indicating that there may be rejuvenating properties associated with Florida Water as well.

Florida Water became a casual member of my witch kit, until I met Rebecca Ryan4. I discovered that she makes a wonderfully powerful version of Florida Water that I now use almost every day as part of my morning cleansing ritual. When I spray Florida Water to the directions, above, below & all around, it sings the melodies to honour Air, Water & Fire, creating a balance of these elements within me. When I asked Rebecca about her connection to Florida Water, this is what she said:

“Florida Water is a mix of ingredients such as cloves and lemon juice that is suspended in a clear liquid and then bottled. Florida Water can be a spritz or can be added to a bath like an oil or dabbed onto the body like perfume. I find it a very easy and very good smelling way to clear and focus and hold a steady intent. Florida Water is one of the staples of my metaphysical cabinet. Whenever I want to

1. Clear the energy in and around me or one of my clients,

2. Clear geographical spaces or large areas – houses, cars, offices, hospitals, etc

3. Dedicate special time to focus on specific duties or specific journeys (ie to find a solution to a question, to locate something lost along the way, to make or get a precious work for someone or myself)”

When I asked Rebecca about the energetic process she uses when creating her particular blend of Florida Water, she said:

“To take this versatile compound from just a mix of (delightful) ingredients into actual Florida Water requires breath – a turning process. This is the energetic intent and the blessing that mixes the substance and forms it as a specific carrier of Spirit. I like to breathe over each individual ingredient as I use it, often I say something like: you, cloves, in your original potency, carrying the best, cleanest, clearest and most accurate vibration, bring yourself into the mix now. I repeat that for each ingredient and then dedicate the whole mixture to the harmonizing, blessing and tender caring for every piece of water or light it will ever come into contact with (animate and inanimate, seen and unseen). After that I ask for a particular blessing from Spirit then leave my Florida Water to rest and bind.”

I highly recommend the use of Florida water as a clearing, purifying, harmonising substance in any ritual, sure to bring a new dynamic to your magickal work. Create your own using the recipe below (or any number available on the internet), or if you would like to try Rebecca Ryan’s own blend of Florida Water, just email her at rebecca@rebeccaryan.com.au for details on purchasing.

Sliver Raven Wolf’s Florida Water recipe:

You will need:

Spring water                  Orange slices                                Lemon slices

Lime slices                                      Fresh mint*                                      Fresh lemon balm*

Fresh rosemary*                            Fresh basil*                                      Fresh hyssop*

A heat-proof glass jar                             A glass jar with an airtight lid

(*alternative herbs may be used, check their significance & toxicity before adding)

Creation steps:

  1. Fill the heat-proof jar with hot water; tip it out when the jar is warmed
  2. Bring the spring water to the boil
  3. Place all other ingredients into the heat-proof jar
  4. Pour boiling spring water into the heat-proof jar to fill it
  5. Allow to cool
  6. Strain & pour into the other glass jar
  7. Seal & store in the refrigerator
  8. The energy of this potion will be strong for 3 days

)O(

 

 

REFERNCE LIST:

  1. Raven Wolf, Silver, 2008, Hedge Witch : spells, crafts &rituals for natural magick, Llewellyn Publications, Minnesota USA.
  2. Yronwode, Cat, http://www.arcane-archive.org/occultism/magic/folk/hoodoo/florida-water-1.php
  3. http://www.luckymojo.com/floridakanangawater.html
  4. www.rebeccaryan.com.au

Shadow Realm Smudge Smoke

Frankincense (resin) – 1 teaspoon

Dragon’s Blood (resin) – 1 teaspoon

Wormwood (dried herb) – 1 teaspoon

Mugwort (dried herb) – half a teaspoon

Myrrh (resin) – half a teaspoon

Vetiver (essential oil) – 5 drops

Place all ingredients in a mortar that is specifically for magickal purpose (not your kitchen one!!).

Grind 3 x 3 deosil (anti-clockwise/sunwise) then 3 x 3 withershins (clockwise/anti-sunwise).

Burn when preparing for deep journey work. Smudge from the top down.

Store remaining blend in an airtight glass container with a small piece of metal, such as a paper clip or a pin.

WARNING – this is specific for deep shadow work, meaning that if you use it without this intent, an unwanted altered state may arise & cause mischief.

)O(

MOON Gemini SUN Capricorn

The following blend helped to establish a sacred sense of Earth Kingdom energy for me & deepen the cleansing that was being worked at the time…

Mugwort, dried herb

Purple Sage, dried herb

Frankincense, resin

Grind 5 times deosil & 5 times widdershins with a stone mortar & pestle. Store in an air tight glass jar with a paper clip.

*Be aware that the smoke from this blend may cause light headednes, avoid inhaling.

Emotional Body Bath Salts

Ground rock salts – half a cup

Australian Sandalwood essential oil – 20 drops

Ylang Ylang essential oil – 15 drops

Chamomile essential oil – 15 drops

Rose Geranium essential oil – 10 drops

Lavender fresh flowers – 1 tablespoon

Mix well & store in an airtight dark container (preferably glass).

Add 1 tablespoon to your bath when you are feeling deeply & require emotional balance.

)O(

Aroma Blend to Purify the Home

40 drops Patchouli* : Saturn, Earth, sensual energy, abundance

13 drops Vetiver* : Venus, Earth, protection, material wealth

25 drops Ylang Ylang* : Venus, Water, peace, love

40 drops Sweet Orange* : Sun, Fire, joy, purification, energy

50 drops Clary Sage* : Mercury, Air, euphoria, calm, dreaming

During your House Blessing, add a drop to openings (such as windows & doors), at the Watchtowers, in the Centre.

*Please note, these must be pure essential oils

)O(