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6th-Feb-2013 09:12 pm - Thoughts
Lion
I want to write a horror film based on ballsy Pagans that are being haunted. But it needs to be a little campy and Madea-ish.

"Hell no honey, front and fuckin center I'm exorcisin' your ass right now! Bernie get my sage, we ain't playin like some scared white chicks!"

Why am I not an effing millionaire?
9th-Jan-2013 09:14 pm - Updizzle
Lion

Heyyyyyyy

Just getting over a cold, one more good nights sleep and I oughta be ship-shape. I said ship-shape because I watched Pirates of the Caribbean 4 earlier. I've done a lot of movie watching and catching up on the DVR the past few days. Me and the couch have gotten pretty close. I watched 21 Jump Street and it was hilarious. I finally watched last weeks episode of American Horror Story and that was pretty good too!

I emailed my adviser and finalized the details - I'm gonna graduate this semester!!!!! I'll be an Associate Biologist which will segue nicely into my Bachelor's degree I'm getting from OSU next. Which means *drum roll* I'm going to be moving to Columbus this year!!!! After graduation I'm going to take up the old job offer with a management position at Kroger, the HR lady said she won't have a problem getting me into the Columbus division. Oh I'm so excited to go apartment hunting! I really don't want a roommate but I'll have to see what kinda salary I'm looking at first. I like the idea of having my own bachelor pad and I don't trust other people to buy the right kind of handsoap and dish towels. Hi, OCD here.

Living on my own is going to be... exhilarating. Me and mom are butting heads like two stubborn asses although that's nothing new. Oh the thrills of decorating my own place! It'll be nice to eat dinner without the television joining the table as well. Just me and my cat Norman. I might adopt a dog too, I want a German Shepherd but that depends what my apartment allows. I'd be fine with a medium size dog. I'm sure I'll fall in love with a shelter animal in no time. I can imagine it now, going for walks in the city and driving the little guy around. I've always wanted a dog, let's hope I stop at just one!

No other major updates. Sorry it's been so long!

18th-Jun-2012 11:45 am - Steel Valley Pagan Festival
Lion
Saturday night I helped coordinate and host the first Pagan festival in this part of Ohio. I've been distracted the past week with my grandfather being diagnosed with Pancreatic cancer so when the pre-festival nerves kicked in I lost it. Panic attacks and mood swings aside, Jan helped me back on my feet and it turned out to be a beautiful day. I recognized most of the faces, but there were some new people which made me happy. Especially for the younger kids! When I was that age I had no idea other people were out there doing Pagan-y things, it makes my heart happy that so many people were able to mix and mingle and feel more connected to the community. Mission accomplished on that aspect!

Jan and I led a "Druidry 101" workshop to familiarize people with the evening's Druidic ritual. I was happy that a member of OBOD attended and asked questions that prompted some really cool discussions. Judging by his tone and the non-verbals, it seemed like he was considering ADF over OBOD. "It's not a competition," I reminded myself. Everyone was fascinated by the inclusiveness of ADF, how they could maintain everything in their current practice without swearing fealty to any specific deities or belief. It was funny, someone asked me and Jan, "so how often do your beliefs clash with one another" and we both said simultaneously, "all the time!"

The evening ritual was led by Jan and I, we honored the Earth Mother and Ancient Wise as our DoTO. It was mostly "point and click" because I didn't want anything scripted. There were about 20 people in attendance for the rite, and I laughed to myself when everyone formed a circle around the space and we had to "herd" them into a more audience-oriented congregation. I was a little worried for the first half of the rite that nobody was "getting it", but when more people approached the altar for praise offerings I was all "huzzah!!" in my head. One of the congregation members started to cry after the omen (whoops) but she explained that it was because she had never been to a ritual that actually healed her before. Wow, still getting goosebumps thinking of that. Our omens were Upsilon, Kappa, and Nu. Challenges and obstacles are the bread-and-butter on the hero's quest, all of that which challenges us is an opportunity to prove to ourselves and the Kindred that we have power and growth continually at our sides. There's rarely ever an omen from the Olympian Oracle that makes you "feel good" so with all things considered the ritual was a success.

Post-rite the celebrations began and boyyy did we celebrate our first Pagan festival! Jan and I barded around until the gravity got too strong to hold guitars and drums. The night was full of laughter and giggling as we drank around the bonfire. The day was a total success despite all challenges and I feel as if the Kindred came out to celebrate and say "FINALLY some pagan activity in these hills!" Everyone left with new friends and an awareness of the support that lay around us, which makes me really happy. To those who couldn't make it: ya sure missed out!

There's always next year ;-)
15th-Jun-2012 11:58 am - Hermetic Magic - Names of Power
Lion
Last Christmas I was in Columbus visiting family when I snuck off to go have fun with athenamsb and Anna Gail. I remember it being a Sunday because the man at Speedway wouldn't sell me wine. Anyhow, Missy lent me a book, "Hermetic Magic: The Postmodern Magical Papyrus of Abaris" by Stephen Flowers. I've had an interesting time absorbing everything in the book, it seems like every time I crack the binding I find something new that I missed before. It's not that I had a pre-existing desire to learn this system; Missy had that epiphany look on her face when I was talking and said "Oh! I have a book for you!" Gods do I love that woman!

Like I said, I never planned on studying this. However I find this book nearly impossible to keep on the bookshelf. I've woken up with my hand still in the page I was reading before, and I've snuck it into work a few times to read when I was on closing shift. I haven't had a book keep my attention like this since I received my copy of the Dedicant Path manual which rarely has time to collect dust between uses as well.

Perhaps what I like most about this book is that it reeks of science which makes me a very, very happy boy. It was easy to see how the discipline of Chemistry arose once the theory of the stoicheia was comfortably absorbed into my mind. Stoicheia is a Greek word meaning "element" or the spoken sound of the alphabet vs. written letter forms. In Hermetic magic the stoicheia function in more or less the same way as elements and compounds do in Chemistry. As explained by Flowers, each letter of the stoicheia (singular stoichion) has four attributes:

A number specific to each stoichion
The physical rendering of the letter form
The spoken sound of each stoichion
The meaning/context of the stoichion

The number is the root (Archê) of the stoichion and was considered the "highest" form that was closest to the divinity the stoichion represents. Next come the written and spoken form of the letter which give physical manifestation to the stoichion. Lastly is the meaning of each stoichion which is complex in nature and glaringly undefined in Flowers' book. An important part of learning Hermetic magic is the process of personal discovery that helps you to develop your own "flavor" of Hermeticism. Rhetoric aside, let's look at the practical usage of the stoicheia.

Each letter of the Greek alphabet is attributed a celestial counterpart that is manifested by speaking the sound of the letter. By speaking the letter's sound we create a vibratory projection that travels through the air. This physical manifestation of sound is how the magician communicates his or her desire, and by carefully choosing which letters to combine the magician will create a "Name of power". How, then, does one go about deciding which letters to combine? Think of the Periodic Table of Elements from Chemistry: theoretically we can combine any elements into a compound under the right conditions, however some are much more stable (and safer!) than others. This is why the stoichion are called "elements" because they are building blocks waiting to be given form and order. If I just lost you, stay on board, it took awhile for that concept to really click in to place with me as well.

As for which letter represents which celestial bodies, we'll start with the vowels of the Greek alphabet which represent the seven classical planets:

Α/α: Alpha, The Moon, #1
Ε/ε: Epsilon, Mercury, #5
Η/η: Eta, Venus, #8
Ι/ι: Iota, The Sun, #10
Ο/ο: Omicron, Mars, #70
Υ/υ: Upsilon, Jupiter, #400
Ω/ω: Omega, Saturn, #800

The numbers aren't arbitrarily chosen, before Roman numerals were in existence the Greeks used their letters as a numeric system. The vowels are unique in that they do not require a paired letter to have power like the consonants do. To chant the sound of omega will begin the process of invoking Saturn's energy, whom the Greeks knew as Chronos. However only speaking the vowel sound is not enough; the Hermetic magician must also visualize or draw the letter form as it is being chanted. It's best to draw the letter rather than visualizing it because the magician must also visualize the number attributed to each letter. Further still, the magician must also maintain focus on the intention he or she wishes the name of power to manifest. Only when these four attributes are addressed simultaneously during ritual will the full power of the stoichion be released into the world to carry out the intention of the magician. You're probably thinking, "wow, that's a lot to focus on at once." You're probably right. In fact, you ARE right. Don't worry, it gets more complex 

The vowels represent the divinities of the planets, whereas the 12 "simple" consonants represent the 12 signs of the zodiac and all attributes given to them thereafter:

Β/β: Beta, Aries, #2
Γ/γ: Gamma, Taurus, #3
Δ/δ: Delta, Gemini, #4
Ζ/ζ: Zeta, Cancer, #7
Κ/κ: Kappa, Leo, #20
Λ/λ: Lambda, Virgo, #30
Μ/μ: Mu, Libra, #40
Ν/ν: Nu, Scorpio, #50
Π/π: Pi, Sagittarius, #80
Ρ/ρ: Rho, Capricorn, #100
Σ/σ: Sigma, Aquarius, #200
Τ/τ: Tau, Pisces, #300

Unlike the vowels, consonant stoichions require a vowel pair for their power to be effective. An understanding of astrology is required for the magician to properly frame the name of power they wish to create. In the book, "Hermetic Magic" there is no prescribed appendix explaining the specific effects of every possible combination of vowel to consonant. After presenting the stoicheia with their celestial counterparts in a handy-dandy chart, Flowers defends the notion that we must come to discover the correlations on our own:

"True Hermetic magicians will set about proving the validity of this [chart] to themselves both theoretically and practically, so there is no need to interpret an exhaustive number of formulas in this way. In fact, such an exhaustive cataloging would be counter productive to the real aims of Hermetics (Flowers, 128)."

Indeed, the aim of Hermetics is for the framework to be passed down from teacher to student. It is then the aim of the student to create a set of correlations specific to their own findings. To learn the mysteries of the stoicheia, the magician must gain a working understanding of astrology. That's the theory, let's take a look at a practical example of how this process works.

A woman wishes to create a barrier around herself and another person with whom she is communicating. Because they are discussing in secret, the barrier needs to render their words unintelligible to any spirits or people that may be eavesdropping.

To begin creating a name of power, you must first address the needs of the situation. This woman and her friend from the example need not only secrecy, but also a fail-safe in case anyone would hear them talking. Since Hermes/Mercurius has sovereignty over communications and secrecy, she'll want the energy of the planet Mercury. The zodiac sign of Scorpio can manifest a desire for secrecy, which makes it a great sign to pair with Mercury in this case. Now we just need to combine their respective letters:

Mercury (Ε) + Scorpio (Ν) = EN -or- NE (Mercury in Scorpio)

The paired letters can lead either with the vowel or consonant, EN will have the same effect as NE. What order you choose depends on the organization of the word once you start adding more syllables and is purely aesthetic. Placing Mercury in Scorpio will bring privacy to the woman and her friend as they're talking, but in the event that someone would stumble by they do not wish to be noticed. Sagittarius  can manifest a desire to begin a train of deep thought that may distract a person from their surroundings. The woman conversing has the intention that if someone would walk by, they would become distracted by their own thoughts and pay no mind to her and her friend's conversation. We'll place the Moon in the sign of Sagittarius then:

Moon (A) + Sagittarius (Π pi - Latin P) = AP/PA (Moon in Sagittarius)

So now that we've combined two syllables, we now have a word, or "name" of power: PANE. Or APNE, NEPA, NEAP, or any other variant so long as the individual syllables maintain their proper bond. If the woman would mess up and mix Mercury (E) with Sagittarius (P) she may find herself distracted by her own thoughts instead of conversing with her friend. PANE will suffice so long as she maintains the intention of secret conversation (Mercury in Scorpio) and distracting outsiders with their own thoughts (Moon in Sagittarius). However we may also include the power of the five classical elements with the remaining "compound" consonants from the Greek alphabet:

Θ/θ: Theta, Earth, #9
Ξ/ξ: Xi, Water, #60
Φ/φ: Phi, Air, #500
Χ/χ: Chi, Fire, #600
Ψ/ψ: Psi, Aether, #700

The classical elements bring a different type of energy than the constellations, and what you choose to do with them is ultimately up to the individual. For the scenario of the woman and her friend, she may wish to invoke an elemental daimon/spirit to carry out her will as she will likely lose focus of the protective barrier once the conversation starts going. Which element she'd choose is mostly personal taste, remember it's your intention that carries out the magical process, not the actual letters themselves.

Since we wish to invoke a spirit who will carry out our will and desires, I would recommend that the woman invoke the planetary powers of Mars which is an active and assertive force. As for which elemental to summon, I would recommend an earth daimon since we already have water (scorpio) and fire (sagittarius) which will ground that inherent opposition. Thus:

Mars (O) + Earth (Θ theta - Latin TH) = OTH

I present the need for caution in our pronunciations here. Mars is manifested by the letter omicron, and in Greek omicron is always pronounced as the "short" or "little" o sound like in the English word "tot" or "shop". The long o sound is produced by Omega which is the manifestation of Saturn and we see it in English words such as "boat" or "show". The easiest way to remember this is to look at the names of the letters themselves:

O-micron (literally "little o") is the short "o" sound as in "cot".
O-mega (literally "big o") is the long "o" sound as in "flow".

So we now have three syllables: EN/NE; AP/PA; and OTH/THO. Together they make the name of power "APOTHEN" which can be rearranged to "NETHOPA" or any other variant of the syllables.

And so the woman and her friend created a name of power and invoked APOTHEN who would come as an Earth daimon (OTH) to guard their privacy (EN) and to befuddle the mind of anyone who came too close (AP) be they spirit or person. As she spoke the name, she visualized each syllable and the intention they were to carry out while also seeing the number 215 which is what each letter adds up to. While conversing, a man walked by on his way to work. He heard their voices, but was instantly reminded of a dream he had the night before which he suddenly desired to analyze more deeply on his walk, not thinking twice of the woman and her friend. He continued safely to work, never any wiser of the magic around him.

Sources:
  • Flowers, Stephen Edred. Hermetic Magic: The Postmodern Magical Papyrus of Abaris. York Beach: Weiser Inc., 1995. Print.
  • Ward, Ken. Astrology Pages. Self Published, 2002-2005. Web. 15 June 2012. [link]
  • Edkins, Jo. Classical Greek Numbers. Self Published, 2006. Web. 15 June 2012. [link]
14th-Dec-2011 08:03 am - Loathing
Lion
From now on I'm limiting the expression of negative emotions to Musical form only.



Oh what is this feeling?
Every little trait, however small,
makes our very flesh begin to crawl.

Yes, ahhh, loathing.
There's a strange exhiliration
in such total detestation.
It's so pure, so strong!

Though I do admit it came on fast,
still I do believe that it can last,
And I will be loathing,
for forever, loathing
truly deeply, loathing you
My whole life long!
8th-Dec-2011 02:42 pm(no subject)
Lion
Excerpt from Serith's "A Pagan Ritual Prayer Book"

Apollo, God of the Logos,
of the Truth that is behind the form,
whose lyre sings forth harmony.
God of the pattern that is,
and thus of the shape that should be:
you are rightly called Great Healer,
returning life to its proper place,
setting it firmly within the natural Order of things.
Rain down your unfailing arrows on this illness;
pierce the crab's hard shell,
drive straight through its heart and carry it away,
leaving a purified body behind.
I have always revered the Logos, Son of Leto,
and dedicated myself to it.
You know that, God of the Bow,
so when I pour out this libation in your honor
I know you will look kindly on me and answer my prayer.

4th-Dec-2011 06:30 pm - K-9
Lion
Last night a dog came into the bar my parents were at. No, dog is not derogatory, I mean a real dog. Woof-Woof. It was very cold outside and he seemed a little hungry so they brought him home. He's a pit bull, looks like he's maybe 2 or 3 years old. I've never really liked those dogs before, but this little guy totally stole my heart.

He had a collar on and behaved very well, so he definitely belonged to someone. I knew our time together would be short, so I wanted to make the most of it. I drove down to the store to buy him some dog food and a chew toy. He ate his food in just a few gulps, not surprising since all we had to give him was cat food! There was some rope with a hook attached in the garage so I fashioned a leash for his collar. As soon as he saw the rope he want for the back door. My heart started pouring at this point. I took him out back and he made a beeline for the pine tree to do his business. Very good boy. We walked around the neighborhood and down to the park for a bit. Walking the dog was nice, it reminded me of when I'd walk with my grandfather and his dog. Happy times.

I took him back to the house and let him explore around a little bit. He ran up the stairs to my parents bedroom and jumped in bed with them. Cute for me since I was already awake, but my parents were still sleeping at 6:30am so they didn't find it too funny! I said goodbye to him three or four times, knowing in the back of my head that he wouldn't be there when I came home from work.

Brian has been returned to his owners and is safe. I'm a little sad, I've never had a dog before and my inner child was absolutely enthralled with him. He was a dog you could wrestle and play with, not one of those yappy dogs that can only bark at everything and get their shit caught in their fur. All I wanted to do at work today was come home and play with him, even though the voice in my head reminded me that wouldn't be the case.

At least I have a cat that plays fetch, and Norman does wrestle like a dog sometimes. Still though, the idea of someone waiting anxiously for me to get home all day was pretty uplifting.

Woof.


18th-Nov-2011 02:10 pm - Aromatherapy gone mildly wrong
Lion
Well last night I attempted to make a lavender mint room spray. I already had lavender oil, and I brought home some Mint leaves from work last night. I crush the mint and put the leaves in a tea bag, brewed it on low heat for 30 minutes. I let it cool, added lavender and put it in the spray bottle.

I don't know what I did but it seriously smells a little like B.O.! It smells clean in the air, but when I smell it ON the fabric it's kinda like mildly-warm day odor. Oh lawd, I'm just gonna stick to buying oils!
18th-Nov-2011 06:38 am - Graveyard
Lion
Somewhere in the back of my mind is a mental graveyard, and this morning as I lay in that weird state of not sleeping but not fully awake it showed itself to me. I've always been a "forgive but never forget" type of person when it comes to any situation. Forgive others for their actions, forgive myself for my reactions, but I save a mental piece from everything to remind myself to act differently the next time around. Usually it's a trigger word somehow related to the situation, other times a scene gets burned in my mind like a Plasma TV you left on pause for too long.

I guess the graveyard has always been there, I just never realized it. The phrase "darkness of the mind" from Philosophy class comes to mind. All themes present in the macrocosm must exist somewhere within the microcosm, right? It's only proper then that we keep a mental graveyard. It reflects itself in a lot of my thinking, I look back on past situations the same way I'd look at a tombstone. There's a marker of the incident, a name, a date, some type of epithet to sum it up. When a painful memory comes up it's tempting to treat it like it's real and right in front of me: cry, yell at the person, ask them why we did what we did. But I just look at the tombstone with mild discontentment, remind myself it's in the past, and move on with my day. To quote NPH from that show he does (I'm so behind on the television times..) "Whenever I'm sad, I stop being sad and start being awesome instead."

This is gonna provide for some interesting trance work.. I need coffee first.
Lion
Haha, had to use that as my title. I took this personality profile survey that athenamsb just posted.. the Five Love Languages quiz. I'll save from rehashing the description of the quiz, but it ultimately ranks which "language" of love you resonate with the most.

I ranked highest in Physical Touch, and I can't say I'm surprised. As I was taking the quiz I kept thinking "Okay I'm starting to notice a pattern here... I like touching." This brief description is all they had to offer at first:

Physical Touch

A person whose primary language is Physical Touch is, not surprisingly, very touchy. Hugs, pats on the back, and thoughtful touches on the arm—they can all be ways to show excitement, concern, care, and love. Physical presence and accessibility are crucial, while neglect or abuse can be unforgivable and destructive.

The results did surprise me just a little bit though, but only in that they revealed what may have been the largest flaw in my last relationship (if you can call it that..). I like touching, I feel safe when someone I care about is physically close to me. I'm by no means an "out of sight, out of mind" person, that's the furthest thing from the truth. But having someone touch you, even if it's just holding hands while driving, that says more than any gift could. Being with someone who can't fulfill that need is tough, and when mixed with the wrong blend of personality (assuming they actually have one) it ultimately ends in disaster.

Anyway, another interesting thing I noticed was I scored a flat ZERO on the "receiving gifts" option. I like receiving gifts, don't get me wrong, but I like practical things better. I show love by doing things that have a long lasting effect, in my mind. When someone goes out of their way to, I dunno, put $5 in my tank before returning my car or showing up with a bottle of wine after they just broke up with their S.O. it really speaks to me. We all get wrapped up in our lives so often, don't buy me something because it made you think of me. Buy it because for some reason you thought I absolutely without a doubt NEEDED it or needed to share it with you.

I really don't ask for much in a relationship. Just physical presence. Define that however you wish ;)

Oh, case in point of me preferring to show love through touch:


athenamsb and I at Wellspring :)
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