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Samhain & Holding to the New Paradigm - Silver Chalice Wiccan 'Zine #53
October 01, 2016
Silver Chalice Wiccan 'Zine #53
Samhain: Summer's End
I'd like to beg your indulgence for a moment before we begin this issue, to take this opportunity to explain why I do what I do in this 'Zine. Because there've been some questions...A couple people have complained that the Silver Chalice has too much "advertising" in it. I can understand that — nobody enjoys ads. Even if they're brief and easily scrolled past. There are two reasons I put things that might be considered advertising in the 'Zine.
If you have any comments, opinions, or content ideas we'd love to hear from you. Please write!
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|Wicca Students Speak Out
|What's New on the Site
|Energy Protection for Sensitives and AYAAD FAQs
|Pages for Highly Sensitive People
|Sabbats & Esbats & Other Wiccan Rituals
|Samhain: Summer's End
|Ask The Priestess
|Alien, InterPlanetary Flight, & Ghosts — Was That Real?
|Word on the Street
|Thanks from a Christian
|Energy Field Barometer
|How to Keep Returning to the New Paradigm
|Silver Chalice Details
Want to hear what our students
are saying about
A Year And A Day:
53 Weeks to Becoming a Wiccan?
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"My Dedication yesterday was the most beautiful, gloriously awesome experience! Thank you so, so very much for giving me this opportunity! I have been trying for years to connect with the Goddess, with limited success. I have known for a long time my path is with Her. Yesterday was a profound experience! Without you, I would not have achieved this. Thank you, thank you, thank you!"
~ Lisa K, USA
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"I just finished my dedication ritual! When I asked the god & goddess to join me I knew immediately when they arrived! The air in my circle became very light. My candle flame began dancing wildly as though in a strong breeze although there was no air movement. I then had a feeling that made me tear up a bit. Not a bad tearing up but with happiness, love and gratitude. After I took down my circle I felt greatly uplifted."
~ Matt D., USA
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" I just wanted to thank you from the bottom of my heart for this course! I have just completed my dedication, and it was such a special and moving experience, I felt shivers up and down my arms and was very close to tears!
I have thoroughly enjoyed the introductory lessons and am so looking forward to and excited about the rest of the course. I feel that I have come home, and been given a long, cool drink of water after many years in a spiritual dessert.
So, once again, thank you so much for everything you have put into this course, and for sharing it with me, I am so glad I found you!"
~ Jude M., UK
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"I did my dedication ritual yesterday and I did not expect to feel it so strongly. When I felt the presence of the Divine it was such a feeling of coming home that I burst into tears. I think the course is a very good arrangement and I am very inspired by the lessons!"
~ Susanna S., Sweden
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"Just wanted to tell you how deeply this affects me. I have clearly always had this within me but I buried it deep inside for 15 years. Now, I am finding my way home! I feel blessed, and that this is a life-changing experience for me. I am impressed by the depth of this course so far. It seems very broad and authentic, and I really like that you somewhat "lay out the rules" but also explain that we have to find our own way. And to take that step, we need to know what questions to ask! My dedication was amazing. I have felt the Goddess near me, in me, all of the time since then. My rite took place in my garden in a ring of trees, 30 meters high and 200 years old, a truly magical place. I like your way with words and how humor can be mixed up with this subject; it should be a celebration of life to engage in this — so, of course we are happy!!!"
~ Frida H., Sweden
Do you have questions about the Wicca Spirituality School's course, A Year & A Day: 53 Weeks to Becoming a Wiccan?
Spotlighting some of the Wicca Spirituality articles you may not have seen yet!
Highly sensitive people and Energy Healers are particularly susceptible to illness of body, mind, and emotions.
It's because you are bombarded daily with energies that affect you.
And because you don't know how to keep yourself from energetic harm.
So you must take action to protect yourself!
These are not skills that our culture teaches, because our society is ignorant of energies and the needs of highly sensitive people.Continue...
The modern shaman. Healer of the Earth and the human community.Not necessarily through physically healing anyone, but simply by being a conduit for Divine Energy to enter the world. There are a lot of these healers around these days. Not all are Wiccans. (Although many Wiccans are modern shamans.) All are highly sensitive people. And all come with a Mission to fulfill. In the past, we were called shamans, medicine women, wise women, healers, priestesses and priests... Continue...
Excerpt from A Year And A Day: 53 Weeks to Becoming a Wiccan
(Please Note: This material is protected by legal copyright)
Samhain: Summer's End!1The storm winds rush through the fields and hiss through the dead grasses, howl at the edges of the house and rattle at the windows... stirring the bare black boughs to scratch and twist against the dark sky. The trees seem ragged: few tattered leaves cling to branches like dead sticks, clattering dryly in sharp, chill winds — Death's maracas. The glow of the Moon peaks and hides behind the eerily stark limbs and dark wisps of clouds, sailing the lengthening night — huge and bright, clear queen of the skies. It is Her time now. She's suitably attended by brilliant courtiers of stars, flashing and winking on the dark velvet of infinite outer space often visible, now that the Sun's brilliance can't hide them for long. The birds have all flown to their Winter homes; only the toughest remain: crows, ravens, Stellar jays... birds that feed on Winter-killed flesh. The gardens and orchards now lie empty and put to bed: clear and blank as a slate, awaiting next year's changes. The last of the harvest has been brought in, shared, preserved, and stored in the cool rooms anything remaining after this day belongs to dark Hecate and Her wild creatures. The joyful colours of life are reduced to basics: greys, browns, blacks only the gourds and the fading leaves retain brightness to cheer the eye a while longer. While the days may hold a faint breath of warmth, the mornings and evenings are frosty and crisp. The Earth begins to freeze. And life huddles deep and still within Her bosom... hunkered down, awaiting rebirth. Fogs roll thick and eerie; mists veil the ground like drifting spirits transforming the ordinary and the known into Mystery, evoking otherworldly sensations and deep, primal tensions. It's a strange between-the-worlds state the liminal zone between wake and sleep, life and death — the long, poised, indrawn breath just before the year's final sigh. This is descent into Mystery, the unknown, the inner realms.
Samhain is very much a key to the Mystery of the Wheel: the gates of life, death, and rebirth (one of the fundamental principles of Wicca) — and especially the most psychologically and spiritually challenging gate on the Wheel: Death. As a Wiccan, by this stage in your training, you understand that "Where there's fear, there is Power." 6 And that's a big part of why this Sabbat is so revered by Wiccans. Wiccans don't hide from the fact of death. We embrace it7 as a healthy, life-giving part of the Cycle. We face our own mortality, and the mortality of all Earthly things, knowing that death is only a doorway, not an ending. Samhain is also a time when the "veil between the worlds" is thin and easily crossed the dead may pop back for a visit; communication is easier between the living and the dead, as well as between mortal and Divine. When we can walk willingly into a dance with Mortality and the Divine, we are uplifted and empowered by the season that others may fear and shun: Samhain.
Dear Priestess, I have virtually no knowledge of the occult arts or magic in general, but I've had a couple very profound experiences that I did not request nor can readily explain.
Alien In My Body
The first experience I had was probably the least notable, but may have been a primer for the second and third. I was simply taking a shower and reflecting on the events of the day and was overcome with the strangest feeling.I felt as if my body was completely alien, and was marveling at the strange shape of my hands as if I was using them for the first time. As I was thinking about it, my own thoughts (in English) seemed very alien and I was strangely amused with the English language (the only language I have ever known). It seemed as if I had just realized that this human form is not my own, that I am only inhabiting this alien body temporarily. I tried to explore this realization further, but this new knowledge was fleeting and as hard as I tried to hold on it faded away like a dream. I then dismissed it as some fluke in my brain like Deja vu (which I also seem to experience regularly). But it really came back to the forefront of my mind a few weeks later after my second "experience".
Flight to Another Planet
The second experience I had was much, much longer and more profound than the first.It was a typical evening at home and I was sitting at the kitchen table waiting on my wife to get home from work. She arrived and was complaining that she had a splinter in her foot. I told her to let me take a look at it. As she bared her foot to me, I found it very hard to focus on her foot and was unable to locate the splinter as my vision started to fade away. This is where the story gets really strange. I cannot tell you what happened exactly, all I know is I was l looking at her foot then I was traveling through outer space at an astonishing speed. I wasn't aware of having a physical body, but I could see perfectly. I was traveling very fast and the only thing I could tell about my destination was that I was traveling to the center... the center of the universe for all I know. I arrived there and seemed to come into orbit around this giant planet. Its surface was the strangest thing I've ever seen, and my language is too limited to try and explain it. The best I can do is liken it to TV static. Even though it looked like a random pattern on the surface, I could somehow understand it and it communicated with me using this static. It began reviewing my life back to me. At this point I came to the conclusion that I must have died. And I started to become annoyed with the object as this replay was taking a very long time (what seemed like weeks) and I wanted it to hurry up and get to the part where I died, as I had no memory of actually dying. As this went on for what seemed like eternity, I began to hear my wife's voice. This is when I realized that I was NOT hearing this sphere thing, as this was a completely different sensation. I heard her describing me to someone else, in the background to all this other stuff that was going on around me. This overwhelming feeling of love for her washed over me like a wave, and then immediate sorrow as I could hear the fear in her voice and realized I was leaving her alone in the world. At this point I involuntarily left the weird planet and returned to my body. And let me add that the return trip was very, very fast. Almost instantaneous, as the trip to the planet seemed to take hours. I then opened my eyes to a strange environment; it seems I had forgotten my home as I had been gone a very long time. Then all the memories of my house and life came flooding back into my mind and I sat strait up as I was apparently lying on the kitchen floor. My wife was on the phone with 911. I asked what happened, and she said I just slumped over and fell on the floor. I asked how long I had been out and she said 5 minutes. 5 minutes?! How? I had days worth of memories... The ambulance arrived, checked me out, and found no problems with me. To this day it gives me goosebumps to tell the story.
Ghost in the Mirror
The third experience was probably a year later. My mom had recently died suddenly of brain cancer, and I was in mourning. I was really upset and wishing I could speak to her again.The most personal item of hers I had was a small 12" antique mirror that hung on her bedroom wall that she used to get ready for work every day. I took the mirror out and looked into it, and what I saw in that mirror will be with me until the end of time. My own reflection slowly and almost unnoticeably changed into hers. I saw her smile at me which caused me to begin to cry, then she began to cry, then smiled again. Frightened, I took the mirror, placed it in my closet, and haven't looked at it since. I was going to give it to my little brother, but I now can neither look into it nor part with it. Today is the 2 year anniversary of her death, and I prayed to I-don't-know-what last night for advice. Let me add that prayer is extremely rare for me as I cannot seem to make myself believe in any mainstream religion. And today I have not been able to shake this sudden interest in the occult. Also, one of the last things my mom said to me has been in my mind all day, she said "A_______, I hope that you find spirituality in your life and may it bring you peace."
Was That Real...?
These things may just be my brain malfunctioning, or a manifestation of my own desires.I have no idea, but I would really like your perspective on this, and I would like to ask if you have ever heard of something like this before. Thanks in advance,
I've had similar experiences, A., as have lots of other people.It's not that unusual, especially these days as all the borders are becoming more permeable... including the borders around our consciousness, and the barrier between the worlds of physical life and non-physical life ("death"). I've experienced a non-terrestrial life myself, and it's a very eye-opening experience! It is very difficult to explain — the words and even the concepts don't necessarily exist on Earth. So it's normal to doubt your experiences and wonder if it was a mere brain glitch.
The current belief system in Western society disavows anything that it doesn’t know how to physically measure, labelling it as "unreal" and "untrue." This is ironic, considering the foundation of almost all scientific progress these days is based on subatomic particles/waves that are neither physical nor measurable.This knee-jerk disbelief is called Scientific Materialism or Skepticism, and is virtually an atheistic religion — one that devoutly believes in non-spirituality despite any evidence, and one that persists in asserting that consciousness is merely a bio-chemical reaction, despite the fact that science itself has disproven that theory. Here's the thing, though. Science can't measure anything that takes place outside Newtonian reality. So although science may not be able to back you up, you can still deduce whether or not it really happened. The clues are how it felt, and how it affected you. How real was the experience to you? How enduring is the awareness that came with it? When we have normal dreams or imagined experiences, they don't feel as absolutely completely palpable as when we have true expanded-consciousness experiences. And the repercussions don't last as long — we don't remember them as vividly as other memories, or still feel the impact of them, years later. But when they ARE real, we remember them forever: clear and strong memories that rival anything we experienced in the physical body. And we are changed by them forever... even if only in ways that others can't perceive. Only you can know. You might need to suspend the implanted habit of disbelief, at least while you test it out for yourself. If it helps, remember that every day hundreds of people have the same kind of experiences. You're very lucky, in my opinion. Being able to experience things like these — opening wide the "doors of perception" — is a great gift! How many unfortunate souls are locked into this tiny, limited, Earth-bound consciousness... and crave nothing more than some taste or promise that there is more? How many wish they could see and communicate with their loved ones on the Other Side once more?
As for your sudden interest in the occult... how could you not be interested?? You've had not one but three potent personal events that prove there's more to life than what ordinary science and society can explain.It would be far more mystifying if you weren't interested! That's probably why your mother encouraged you to "find spirituality" — partly why, at least. The answers to your experiences lie there. When we connect with our higher selves — you could call it the Divine, Cosmic Mind, the Universe, or whatever — all the answers are there for us to read. There are no secrets from the Divine! And spirituality is the way we reconnect with infinite mind/spirit. Of course, there's an important difference between spirituality and religion. Religions like to intercede for us with the Divine. Spiritual paths lead you to commune with the Divine directly. You should know this, before you choose one. I'm glad you reached out, A.
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Do you have a question you'd like answered? Email the Priestess and your question could be answered in a future issue.
(Note: questions may be edited for brevity or clarity. No real names will be disclosed. For reasons of legality, all questions become the property of Wicca-Spirituality.com.)
Stay close to anything that makes you glad you are alive.
~ Sufi saying
A saint is a sinner who never gave up.
~ Paramahansa Yogananda
If it can be solved, there's no need to worry. And if it can't be solved, worry is of no use.
~ 14th Dalai Lama
Satisfaction of one’s curiosity is one of the greatest sources of happiness in life.
~ Linus Pauling, Nobel Laureate
There is nothing beyond one grand field of consciousness, which holds: body is mind — matter is intelligence — physiology is consciousness.
~ Tony Nader
The best way to predict your future is to create it.
~ Abraham Lincoln
What People Are Saying About Wicca-Spirituality.com:
I have always been Christian, but after finding the power and closeness to the Divine when doing spells, I've had to research it for myself. I wanted to thank you for, as a Wiccan, and on a Wiccan site, posting such useful & tolerant articles based on Christianity. Thank you for not being hateful, but being open and peaceful. I have learned a lot and quite enjoy your articles. I hope to reach a place of peace & knowledge about the truth of God & Jesus, and perhaps find peace about practicing magic as a 'Christian'. God bless you. ~ K. in South Africa
Thanks for writing!! I appreciate hearing from you! : )
This article owes much to ongoing explorations of the journey to the New Paradigm with Colombe. Thanks, Colombe!
An ongoing issue these days, as mentioned in earlier editions of the Silver Chalice, is a sense of flip-flopping between the Old Paradigm and the New Paradigm.One minute we're thinking and acting out of higher consciousness, responding with love and compassion and peace... and the next minute — without warning! — we're stuck back in ego-mode, reacting with anxiety and anger and despair (or whatever our typical ego-emotions tend to be). So the question arises... how do we reset ourselves to the New Paradigm when we find that we've backslid? We need to re-align with the Resonance. But Resonance can be tricky to find, especially when the ego is in ascendance. So rather than just look at the Energy Fields going around, this month, I thought it'd be helpful to explain how to set your own sails to find the Energy Field you want!
When everything is inconstant flux, and life feels so different from what we've learnt to expect, it can be challenging to feel into the Resonance.What does it mean to "feel the Resonance"? I'm sure you know the feeling you sense deep within, into a level of knowing where...
|Feel what you feel. Feel what's going on in your body. If you're having emotions, feel where they are in your body and what they're like. Then love them. Love the emotions, which are only your body trying to communicate with you. Love your body. Love yourself for being willing to be there with yourself!
|Ground & Centre. (If you're in A Year And A Day: 53 Weeks to Becoming a Wiccan, this is in Lesson #3.) When you connect with the Light above and the Love in the Earth, you expand your Energy Field bigger than whatever problem you're facing... as well as Calling in Divine aid. And Centering, as the name states, brings you back to your Centre. There, where the Goddess lives, everything can be seen in its true state of goodness.
|Look around you. 99 times out of 100, nothing bad is actually happening at this moment. The only trouble exists in your mind. Look around and notice that in fact everything is okay in this moment. Maybe even better than okay!
|Pendulate. When experiencing negative/unpleasant emotions, try going back and forth between the emotion and where you are right now. For example, focus on the anxiety in your stomach (or wherever), then look at something pleasant outside you: a plant, the sky, a picture of a kitten — whatever makes you feel calm and happy. Let yourself take that feeling in; stay with it til you feel a more pleasant emotion. Then go back to noticing the anxiety. Then steep in whatever's pleasant in your surroundings. Anxiety. Pleasantness. Anxiety. Pleasantness. As you do this, you’ll find that each time you return to the anxiety, it'll be a little less. It fades away, bit by bit.
|Shift your perspective. If you allow your thoughts to dwell on the negative, your emotions are going to follow them into that pit of Hell. Look on the bright side. Even when there's no bright side to be seen. In the very worst of situations, you can at least remind yourself that you're in training for something important to your future. For especially stubborn thoughts/emotions, I've found Abraham-Hicks' Focus Wheel exercise to be really effective. (Hard to believe, but I haven't written about this online yet. It's explained perfectly in their book — see my review of it here — along with a number of other really effective tools.)
|Shift location and action. Go somewhere that makes you feel good. Do something that truly makes you happy (i.e., not something that you’ll regret later). We often feel like we have to stay where we are, even when we feel terrible there. We don't! Sometimes just exchanging our environment — especially for a lovely, quiet, natural setting — is enough to bring us back to ourselves.
| Put attention on things at higher vibration.
Sometimes it's enough to just shift your attention for an hour or two. Some of my favourite standbys are...
|Breathe! Breathe into your heart. Put your hands gently over your heart. Imagine your breath coming into and going out from your Heart Centre, allowing this to create more space around your heart. It increases the power of this practice to imagine a flame there, fed by your breath, warming and softening the whole Heart Centre. If you're experiencing extreme emotions, it helps to start with what I call a Reset Breath first: Breathe deep into your belly, long slow breaths with a pause between inhalation and exhalation. This resets your vagus nerve — the communication channel between your intuition/deep knowing and your conscious mind, relaxing your parasympathetic nervous system.
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Notice or suspect an energy field going around? Can you confirm this reading, or shed more light on it?
I'd love to hear what's happening for you! Please let me know.
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© erin Dragonsong 2016. All rights reserved worldwide. Reprinting any of this is forbidden unless you obtain my written permission: karma and the law agree on this one. And Copyscape is keeping an eye on these things.