The Bean Tighe (pronounced ban tig) is a helpful spirit that is likely one of the inspirations for the "fairy godmother" type donor/patron from faerie and folk tales. She is the one who makes it possible for others to achieve their potential ... whether it be helping with the maintenance of one's home, one's finances, or the ability to make one's dreams come true.

Friday, February 24, 2012

PBP: Week 8 ... [D]issappointment

I'm afraid I'm going to be both disappointed and disappointing this week.

Issues of a personal/family nature have been an ongoing situation for me for the last year and, just as I was beginning to allow myself to believe that it might be over, the individual at the heart of it has chosen to step things up to the next level, rather than be reasonable.

As a result, my life is likely going to remain in suspended animation for the foreseeable future while I await the squabbling to abate so that useful progress can be achieved.

I am very disappointed in both the situation itself and the person behind the trouble. This makes it very difficult to want to write anything.

I recognize that this is a circumstance that is completely outside my ability to influence ... I am, essentially, an innocent bystander caught in the crossfire between one's person's greed and determination to have things their way at all cost. There is little I can do but to wait.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

PBP: Week 7 - [D]epression

I am still struggling to get caught up to where I should be with my Herbalism studies. I'm almost there. Finally, I have seven lessons left to do and I'll be starting on Book 2 at the beginning of March like my study timeline says I ought to. It's been a struggle and has meant that nearly everything else has had to go on the back burner.

Interestingly the reasons I got behind tie in with this week's Pagan Blog Project post ... likely they are also the reasons why my spiritual practices fell to the wayside during the three years I was in Calgary.

I have always had a tendency towards depression as far back as I can remember. Granted that having been as bullied as I was as a child and into my youth, certainly did not dispose me to being an outgoing or outwardly cheerful child. Whatever the factors that led me to it, I was the child that would deliberately draw apart when there were gatherings taking place. I have vivid summer camp memories of wandering the woods alone in tears while everyone else was having a good time at the weekend dance or some-such.

Being that my father was a psychiatrist, and one of the worlds leading minds in depression research, I possess far greater tools in my mental inventory than the average individual. I have been keenly aware of my own depressive traits and tendencies since I was about 12 or 13 years old and have practised self-analysis and self-management of my inner turmoil since I was about 16.

These are not things that my Father sat down and taught me how to do. Indeed, he had a distinct failing where recognizing when a family member was having issues or something was amiss ... as demonstrated by the lengths to which my grade 9 English teacher had to go to convince him that I needed glasses or by his reaction to his own mother needing a cane to get around. Rather, these are things that I learned to do through reading his psychiatric books and journals and by listening to him discussing his day at the dinner table with my Mother.

Friday, February 10, 2012

PBP: Week 6 - [C]rafts

Just a brief post this week ... I've been working hard at getting myself caught up with my herbalism schoolwork.   Since I have until October of 2012 to have all three books completed and all lessons sent in and graded to be ready for the final, I have some lost time to make up for. I'm averaging 6 lessons completed ever three'ish days. With 33 lessons in book 1 to complete, if I continue at this rate, I'll have myself caught up and ready to start the  2nd book at the beginning of March. I will then have 5 months to complete it and 2 months to complete book 3  and review to be ready for the final.

This week's topic is crafts ...

A couple of weeks back, while writing for this project, I decided to find new ways to incorporate the sacred and, specifically, actions that would allow me to honour the three Ladies who are my patrons

I suppose some would call them matrons, but to me that seems like an anal point of semantics that radical feminists feel they need to resort to in order to distance themselves from the supposed evils of the "patriarchy". I'm afraid I cannot agree ... look up the words patron and patronage in the dictionary and you find a reference to the concept of development of an individual (or groups) under the auspices/support of a benefactor. The definition of the word matron, while motherly, carries no such definition. Being that I, personally, favour a happy medium (BALANCE) in all things ... I'm going to opt to utilize the grammatically correct word, as opposed to inventing for myself a new use for a different word.

For the most part, those crafts I create tend to be dedicated to Medb (pronounced Mev) of Connacht as she is the one of the three who most favours direct action ...and mead. My brewing of which is on a grudging hold until I have a permanent home and the ability to bring my carboys out of storage.

However, I have found that certain activities seems to draw out a certain Lady's energies over the others.

Anything involving herbs, oils, infusions, etc, (in short, the products of the green growing things)will bring out the high spirited and very youthful energies I am learning to recognize as Airmid (Aer-mit). Whether this be my wild-crafting, my current school curriculum, or my search for the right home on acreage to purchase.

While, as befits her position as hearthkeeper, anything of a domestic nature will resonate with Brìd (Breet) ... however, I have been given to know that I am expected to create and work with an actual forge at some point but that will have to wait until I have a home to call my own with enough property to allow me to build it.

I apologize for the brevity of this post. I may opt to come back at a later time and expand on it more.
Be well!

Medb - Wire writing with the Ogham alphabet.
Medb - Wire weaving
Medb - Chainmail pouch
Brìd - Imbolc doll and cross
Brìd - Baked honey cakes
Airmid - making Rosehip Syrup

Friday, February 3, 2012

PBP: Week 5 - In Good [C]onscience ...

Not being Wiccan, I often find myself running afoul of the perceptions of the mainstream (both the uninformed non-pagan, and the fluffies who haven't realized that there are almost as many flavours of witchcraft out there as there are at Baskin-Robbins, and then some) where the "Rede" is concerned.

Eight words the Wiccan Rede fulfill, An it harm none do what ye will.
~ Doreen Valiente, 1964

That's just not how I do things ...

My personal view, where that particular piece of prose is concerned, centres on a perception of the time period within which Wicca emerged into the public view. I strongly suspect that those publishing companies which are currently responsible for the fact that the Craft has become a money making fad (indeed, almost a fashion statement instead of a true belief pattern) likely found it easier to risk themselves upon those books where the common Christian perception of the evil witch casting hexes was refuted and the would-be neophyte was represented as pacifistic to the point of near-apathy. It just never rang true to me and, really, it put me in mind of the very Christian concept of "turning the other cheek".

My ancestors are not a peaceable people. Neither they, nor their gods, were prone to letting slight, insult, or wrong go unanswered. The concept of Face/Reputation is a very important one and children are still, even now among the diaspora of the Irish and Scots, taught that we need to behave always in a manner that would bring honour to our great-great-grandchildren. Gaels have VERY LONG MEMORIES and your wrongdoings can and frequently will be held against your descendents. (Don't believe me? Ask a MacGregor or a MacDonald about the Campbells ... a clan often shunned even now in the twenty-first century for crimes perpetrated in the 1600-1700's).