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Healing Darkness

There’s nothing quite like catching the sparkle of the sunlight in a quartz sphere or generator that shows off its rainbow splash of color. My eyes dance a little jig every time I see them. I feel the same way whenever I see the flashes of gold or blue in a Labradorite specimen or carving. I’m deeply amazed at the beauty Mother Earth contains in her dark caverns. Surely these magnificent pieces of earth were meant to meet the sunlight!

Darkness is often associated with evil, but so much beauty comes from within the darkness. Even the life story of the Lotus flower teaches us this. There’s something magical about coming into the light. When we hold pain in bondage to the darkest places of our hearts it can grow into a powerful force that we so often can’t handle on our own. One day we may eventually get hammered in just the right spot and when that pain emerges it brings with it a manifestation that can harm those closest to us. Even miners know they must be very careful when they are hammering and chiseling away at the matrix because debris can fall and cause injury or even death. Every move they make to discover the next gorgeous treasure from the earth must be done with caution and wisdom.

When we’re dealing with pain or trauma, we need to approach our hearts, minds, and emotions with gentle care. It’s often helpful to meet with a therapist and ask them to guide us to healing. They are trained to know when to stop and when to pay attention to the things we say and the emotions we show.

In addition to a therapist, it’s crucial we have a spiritual guide or mentor who can intuitively enlighten us about trust, growth, and healing. I have my own personal experiences with counselors and spiritual guides. When a spiritual guide has some counseling experience, they can be quite a valuable partner in our journey. I’ve also seen and experienced the dark side of the ‘healing’ community when a leader boasts of counseling experience but their advice didn’t reflect. There are numerous people in the world who claim to be healers and leaders, but the manifestation of their words and behaviors tell a sordid story. We often don’t even realize how shady they are until we’re in the center of their perfect storm.

In my personal practice, I spend time in personal reflection just breathing steady. I close my eyes and my mind to the chaos of the world around me and just listen to my intuition. I have partnered with Peacock Ore and Labradorite to inspire my Third Eye to relax and allow me to align with my inner core. Our bodies hold a lot of wisdom and we can benefit from it if we learn to listen. Once we arrive at that place of knowing we can invite those issues into the light for healing.

Feelings of fear, pain, and even anger may arise out of the darkness. These feelings give power to those emotions and we need to learn how to face them in ways that can empower us to break free. I will often work with rose quartz to lend its gentle loving vibrations and comfort to my soul. As much as I can partner with various crystals for my healing journey, the trust we experience with those who love us can carry quite a powerful wave of renewal for us. Those who truly love us and have proven to be trustworthy are like a stunning and clear quartz. They vibrate at a higher level of consciousness to support us in our journey.

Though we tend to shy away from our darkness, we can learn so much from those shadowy places. We can become empowered, enlightened, and healed. Trust in yourself and fear not.

~Sisterlisa

 

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When Spiritual Leadership and Money Get Under the Same Covers

If there’s one thing I know all too well, it’s when a spiritual leader gets seduced by greed. Many years consoling victims of spiritual abuse has given me way too much experience by witnessing how people are destroyed when a leader is weak. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with earning a living, but when the mega leaders are buying mansions, exotic cars, and taking trips around the world we begin to suspect foul play. Not just because they’re living it up (because enjoying life is a good thing), but because their offerings to their loyal followers are beyond fair market value and staff is under paid. I’ve seen it all too much in religious communities and we see it in the meta community also.

Money can seduce even the greatest of leaders, no matter how humble we try to be. There are numerous magical practitioners and artisans who offer us their best intentions with their wares and tools for our spiritual journey, but a spiritual leader who can keep greed in check is hard to come by. Money is there to serve us, not to control us. Likewise, we have an ethical responsibility to live sustainably with our earnings.

Answering the call to be a spiritual leader comes with great sacrifice. Humility has the greatest value, but it becomes a struggle for the throne when greed slithers in. There’s a story you may have heard about a man who was called to be a spiritual guide and he began to look down his nose at the people he was called to serve. A great storm came upon him as he traveled by boat and the shipmates threw him to the storm and sea and he sank under the great depth in the belly of a big fish. It was there in his dying moments that he gave the greatest sacrifice one can give, a spiritual sacrifice. In the darkest of moments he gave thanks. Gratitude is the most magical element we have and it comes with incredible humility. It’s our giving of thanks through a truly humble heart that we find our deliverance.

However, after he was delivered from the mighty ocean he continue to ‘do his job’ with a condescending spirit. You see, gratitude requires spiritual sustainability in order to flourish in ways beyond where our own vision can take us.

Lets get back to the most basic lessons of our spiritual calling. Why are we serving, who are we serving, and how can we make their journey successful?

If we’re absorbing their banks accounts to live in obscene wealth while they suffer financially so they can buy all the latest abundance magic tools we have to offer then we are so off balance that even Justice herself takes notice. I’ve wondered if Karma serves our Lady Justice in order to bring balance back to the lives of the people who suffer.

How can we best serve others so they may enjoy the benefits we have to offer? The benefits of magical living is not only for us. We’re here to guide others to create abundance and blessings in their lives too. How can we teach them to fish when the rod, hooks, lure, and bait are so expensive that they can’t afford to fish?

There’s a lesson we need to get centered with if we hope to continue to serve from a place of humility so our intentions can manifest in ways that benefit the highest good of all.

Magical blessings,

Sisterlisa

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What Happened to The Power of the Divine Feminine?

In a land far far away…. there was a Divine Feminine and she was worshiped by so many followers that a patriarchy religion had to go to war to stop them from adoring her. People of faith were slaughtered, including women and children, all at the commands of men claiming their God instructed them to do so. All in his name. Government and Religion joined dirty hands and entered their tainted marriage bed to seek out and destroy evidence of the Goddess.

Now we see her voice calling out to the victims, “Speak out my dear ladies”. It’s high time to let the Divine Feminine voice be heard. No more sexual abuse. No more children victimized. No more women being manipulated by ‘powerful men’. If they knew true power they would use it to keep their peckers in their pants.

I wish I could prescribe specific crystals to protect against these kinds of physical abuses. It would be great if magic was ‘just like in the movies’ and all we had to do was whisper, “Obliviate!” with a flick of a wrist and a little stick. If we could, maybe they wouldn’t be so willing to show their little sticks.

But here’s what we can do, we can speak up. We can go deep within our hearts and minds and pull out our own powerful voices. That voice is empowered by the Goddess herself. She offers ancient wisdom and invites us to be intelligent, well-spoken, and powerful.

It seems just so perfect that the Wonder Woman film was finally made, after decades of discussion. Her film launched the year that we saw our National Women’s March, in 2017. Gal Gadot is a vocal advocate and joined a collective voice of women to move an abusive man out of the production of her next Wonder Woman film. This was also the year Taylor Swift won her $1 symbolic lawsuit against a DJ who groped her at a meet n’ greet with the female power-star.

I may not be the a royal Songstress like Taylor or a highly sought after super heroine like Gal, but I can use my keyboard and my voice to encourage our sisters to stand tall and keep moving forward. The Goddess is with us. She embodies all that we are and who we are. We finally live in a time where cameras can see us and hear our collective voices. It doesn’t matter which Deity you love and admire. Some believe in a masculine God who partners equally with followers of the Goddess. Followers of this God have joined us in chorus to demand a safer world. We stand tall, hand in hand, moving forward in this battlefield for freedom and safety.

It has been wisely stated, “America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.” ~Abraham Lincoln

We must continue to speak out and support one another. We aren’t alone and we need to convey to the next generation that they aren’t alone either. It’s time to train these wee ones and prepare them for the battle ahead of them.

Blessings,

Sisterlisa

 

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The Masters Degree of Fate

After diving deep into a strict, hell-fire damnation, religion and being stripped of everything that was me, leaving was another stripping away. It was like tumbling down a steep mountainside covered in sharp rocks and cacti. All that I thought was my flesh was being ripped from my frame, leaving me raw. Bleeding. I was told the blood would be healing. Maybe they were right after all.

I didn’t need to be washed in someone else’s blood. It was my blood that I needed. I ran a race that wasn’t even mine to run. All of the marks of a cult became my field of study, my discipline. I know their ways inside and out. My passion transformed into a deep desire to know myself. To understand my human psyche. Why do my emotions, my mind, and my soul intertwine?

Why do we crave religion, rites, and rituals? Whether it’s an organized religion with ancient roots or the hard fast rituals of the NFL, we crave it. We want to belong, to have community. But at what cost?

The criticism and skepticism of faith, mysticism, and metaphysicalism. Anything that isn’t tangible is called into question. The crowd becomes a mob with torches.

“They’re burning all the witches, even if you aren’t one.” ~Taylor Swift

Where does reality end and belief begin? Can’t they coexist? Can we waltz together smoothly? Maybe the dance steps resemble a fun foxtrot or a sexy tango. For some it may be more of a belly dance.

This ballet of belief carries a self discipline that might be considered a science, but the art of spirituality is where we can be free to express ourselves in ways that can’t be defined by the neat and tightly constructed boxes of science. Thus we’re considered a field of pseudoscience.

We’re accused of heresy, fiction, and of being gullible.

The battle lines have been drawn and we’re told it’s all black and white. You’re either scientific or you’re not.

But I ditched that mentality when I left the cult of religion. That black and white/this is right and that is not, sin and holy facade and I have no desire to go back. I refuse to become a pillar of salt.

The religious community and the science community are ever at odds with one another and I will take no part in it.

Just because my faith, hope, and beliefs can’t be measured by science doesn’t make them invalid.

We can’t scientifically prove love, but the majority of the world still believes in it.

Because we experience love.

I concede, there are con artists who take advantage of people who are experiencing their spirituality. There are fleecers in religion that make your blood boil. There’s a con around every corner so how can we make sure we aren’t duped while pursuing our spiritual enlightenment?

I’ve found my way through the smoke and mirrors. I’ve mastered my own labyrinth.

There’s no reason to get lost in a maze of hay with monsters cloaking in the fog and shadows.

Spirituality can utilize the earth’s elements to become your art form. It’s your method of expressing your path. You create your own gallery of experiences. Find your discipline and use science as a framework. These tools offered here can be worked with to paint the joy of your journey, to sort out your hardships, to cleanse away the doubt and fears.

Discover who you are and equip yourself to become the master of your own fate.

Master of my own fate,

Sisterlisa

 

 

 

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Revive the Legends

The era of darkness when religions, traditions, and culture suffered a holocaust at the hands of a government, sponsored by one religion, was one we must never forget.

“Those who do not learn history are doomed to repeat it.” ~George Santayana

 

The formative years of America certainly held ‘group think’ as a method of survival and control and most likely based on fear. However, the founding fathers were visionaries in their composition of the Constitution. Evolving thought and belief was very difficult in that era of survival and expansion in this new world. Even Benjamin Franklin had to write under a pseudonym to disseminate his profound wisdom to the people.

 

Those primitive years of American history were undoubtedly fraught with fearmongering in order to keep control. Those with twisted ideas of ambition sought to keep a firm hand on this new world for their benefit. The sacred principle of ‘freedom of religion’ held a powerful vision for the future when we could find ourselves living in a country that fights for the people’s right to hold their own beliefs and spiritual practices, independent from group think.

 

My soul hears the cries of those in states where this sacred principle is not upheld as well as it is in other states. Many pagans are walking on eggshells in their work places, their schools, and neighborhoods because they fear losing their job and being discriminated against. They’re deeply concerned for the safety of their children while they’re at school. Making waves in school can disrupt a child’s social acceptance and lead them to suffer depression under the tyrant bullies of their hallways.

 

 

For those of us who live in cities where we can live out loud without those fears may find ourselves enjoying the privilege of a society who honors freedom of religion. What will we do with that kind of privilege?

 

Living out our freedom is a key to supporting those who can’t. If we remain in hiding, we weaken our future abilities (and theirs) to truly benefit from this passionately sacred principle, Freedom of Religion.

 

We have an American and spiritual duty to raise awareness about lesser known spiritual paths. The Constitution protects the freedoms of minorities from being overtaken by the majority. How do you know if you’re a minority?

 

 Louis Wirth, a Sociologist, defined a minority group as;

 

“a group of people who, because of their physical or cultural characteristics, are singled out from the others in the society in which they live for differential and unequal treatment, and who therefore regard themselves as objects of collective discrimination”.

 

Yet we need further clarification on this because any group can claim to be in the minority based on that definition alone.

 

The dictionary defines minority as;
“the smaller number or part, especially a number that is less than half the whole number.”

 

I’m certainly not intending to be political with this post, rather my hope is to send energy of support to our spiritual community that holds a daily concern for their safety and their rights as equal citizens regardless of their spiritual beliefs.

 

The pagan umbrella covers a wide array of spiritual beliefs and practices. Unfortunately, many spend too much time bickering about what constitutes a witch or a pagan, who is a real witch or not, and whose ethics are more morally sound than the next. But isn’t this exactly what the world’s majority religions are constantly doing? Uniting together for our freedom doesn’t require that we hold the same beliefs as a group, but it should require that we all hold our freedom as sacred.

 

While we each have our own heroes and deities, reviving those legends can help raise awareness about our historical culture and heritage. Our ancestors were stripped of theirs and we can do so much more to honor the suffering they endured.

 

How do you know what your ancestral heritage and culture was?

 

You can start by getting a DNA test done and conduct a name search of your last name. Dig into that regions history to discover what was held as sacred during your ancestor’s time, prior to the forceful religion’s arrival there.

 

You can also investigate who their deities were and what their stories consisted of. What lessons were being taught to the people through those stories?

 

Once you discover those fascinating details, begin studying what life was like for them. What kind of clothing did they wear? What were their spiritual practices? Who were the medicine people? What plants, herbs, and minerals were available to them?

 

As much fun as the films depicting those heroes are, they rarely tell the true stories in an accurate way. We know Themyscira is a fictional location, but the Amazonian women held sacred beliefs in Greek deities. Marvel’s Thor is inspired by the Norse religion, but he didn’t pair up with an Earthling that resembled Natalie Portman, he was actually married to Sif, a goddess of the earth with flowing gold hair.

 

The stories are filled with hints of what life and society may have been like for our ancestors. It’s a captivating journey!

 

Our own resident Mystic, Jess offers a 12 month series devoted to the goddesses of various regions. She takes you through portals of time and space to introduce you to numerous Goddesses and their kinfolk. You can read more about the series, Goddess Mysteries, or purchase a stand alone class of your favorite Goddess.

 

Reviving the Legends,
Sisterlisa
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Is Magic Real?

It was a quiet Halloween evening in my neighborhood and my parents took my little sister trick or treating. At the age of 17, it was unheard of that I would volunteer to stay and gift candy to the little ones knocking on our door. After the rush swept through there was a calmness and quietness I hadn’t heard in some time. Especially not on Halloween night! This eerie stillness got me all choked up, my throat felt swollen and it was hard to swallow. My breathing became shallow and fear started to creep in. It wasn’t often that I was home all alone at night. I stalked through the house to lock the windows and headed down the long dark hallway to the backdoor. The entire backyard was thick with night. I quickly flipped the switch to illuminate the patio! Though the light shone bright around the door, the light waned as it dimly reached through the yard. It was still dark in the distance and I couldn’t even see the fence. Suddenly, the fear dissipated and the garden called to me. I wanted to respond and for a moment I felt empowered. Just as I gained enough courage to speak out to the abyss of the universe, fear throttled me and my body obeyed with a slam of the door and the click of the lock was the last sound I heard before running back to the brightly lit living room.

*deep breath*

My heart was pounding and a few moments later my little sister, followed by our parents, arrived with her pillowcase bulging with the scent of chocolates and fruity sugar candies. Her giggles radiated throughout the room as she dumped her loot on the floor to sort through. When they asked how my evening went, I simply smiled and shrugged my shoulders, “Quiet and uneventful”. I never spoke about what I experienced.

It wasn’t until 25 years later that I realized what really happened. After years of being spooked by anti-witch rhetoric from religious folks, my teenage mind had been programmed to ignore and even run from any hint of magic. Though my childhood was spent laughing at the comedy of Bewitched, the idea of real magic was demonized by many people I knew and dismissed as fake by the non-religious.

After we spent too many years deeply entrenched in religion, the magic began to call to me again. During our departure, spiritual gifts became stronger as we pushed our way through the foretelling of gloom and doom from our religious friends. We were condemned for leaving their community and told bad things would happen if we didn’t stay. I had spent enough time in a few charismatic churches to believe in spiritual gifts, though the cult we fled demonized those gifts as evil.

 “Intuition is the discriminative faculty that enables you to decide which of two lines of reasoning is right. Perfect intuition makes you a master of all.”~Paramahansa Yogananda

Religion has effectively demonized spirituality outside of their own. Devastatingly, the hard-fast sweep of religion coupled by government control caused over 100,000 people to be murdered for not conforming. The mentality of the controlled programming, along with the threat of death, forged a very deep level of control that has spanned the generations who have followed.

Even today, in our society that has embraced more liberalism and freedom in spiritual practice, people who no longer follow a religion have deeply held, fear based, beliefs against magic.

What many people don’t understand is how empowering and freeing it is to work with elements of the earth in your spiritual practice. But isn’t that exactly what a controlling religion doesn’t want for its adherents? To be empowered and free. Though skeptics don’t believe magic leads to freedom. Critics have long held a stance that magic is fraudulent and akin to television evangelists working toward obtaining your bank account. In the critic’s mind, it’s all snake oil.

What about these very real-to-me experiences of spiritual happenings? 

I can’t scientifically prove these experiences are real, but to me they were very genuine.

How does a mother know her intuition is real except she obey her intuition and it guides her and her children to safety?

I sincerely believe this energy we experience is a real occurrence. You can call it magic, energy, intuition, or the name of your deity.

If it has guided you well, kept you safe, inspired growth, and any numerous other positive manifestations have come to fruition because you heeded that guidance then stay true to it.

I’m not sure why I felt called to the garden so many years ago. I can’t help but wonder what would’ve happened had I stepped out a little further into the darkness. Maybe my intuition, my magic, was telling me to lock the doors and windows for a reason. I’ll never know for sure, but at least I’m here today to tell the story.

Magically yours,

Sisterlisa

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Living Out Loud

After we ran from our former religion, that kept women silent and their spiritual gifts tied up in a white jacket, I was eager to learn more about my gifts and be authentic to my true self. It wasn’t easy at first, but the more I was honest with myself the easier it became to be genuine with others. In that previous community, labels were how we sized people up. We could tell how good a religious person you were based on the clothes you wore, how you fixed your hair, how dark your makeup was, or what you did with your time on a Sunday morning. Just so you know, attending church wasn’t “good enough”.

For those who didn’t dive deep into church life, we viewed you as outsiders. Oh yes, we were eager to recruit you so you could feel included and so we could actually hang out with you. After all, hanging out with friends who weren’t devoted to the church was a slippery slope with the devil waiting for all of us down below. For all of these reasons, and many more, the idea of ‘living out loud’ would be downright frightening. It took me many years to be free from those fears. I had to stop worrying about the labels people would place on me. Eventually, it became a compliment if church folk called us heretics or worse yet, infidels.

As my daughters and I made our way through magical practice we began seeing the same issues arise in non-church communities. Even though they had also left the religious world, that idea of labels and judgment stuck like Gorilla glue.

  • Are you a Universalist?
  • Are you a witch?
  • Are you Wiccan?
  • Are you pagan?
  • What are you?!?

Oh sometimes I just like to keep people guessing. But now I shall live out loud!

I wondered what I would say to myself if I could go back in time. What kind of advice would I share with younger Lisa. In the video below I opened up about what I would have to say. What would you say to your younger self?

Living Out Loud

There’s no greater time than today to live out loud and be true to yourself. Do you shy away from labels? Afraid of what others might think? Do you fear coming out of the broom closet? You’re not alone.

Magical blessings,
Sisterlisa

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Crystal Healing Room by Room

When I first began working with crystals all I could do was place my one wee Green Calcite on my dresser in my room. That was all I had! My husband started noticing that I was buying the smallest crystals (partly because that’s all the shops around here had at the time). Oh it was also because cost was (and still is) a bit high for anything larger than a penny. Then he accompanied me into a crystal shop! He fell in love just as much as I had. He teases sometimes saying to his friends that I can’t be trusted with a wallet full of money when I enter a crystal shop, but the truth is he can sometimes be more enamored with the larger specimen than I am.

We have traveled from West Coast to East Coast and back again (even to the Pacific islands) and visit every crystal shop we can find along the way. We’ve been quite fortunate to find some reasonable priced places with nice quality minerals. Now that our collection has grown we have been able to add crystals to each room of the house (and even for the cars). In the video below I share some of my recommendations for which crystals to add to each room of the house and why I would choose those particular crystals.

Crystal Healing, Room by Room

Crystals for each room of the house and their correspondences. ~Sisterlisa Get your sparkly treasures here: http://intuitivehomesolutions.com

Does any of this resonate with you? Do you have different crystals in those rooms than I do? I’d love to hear how you integrate crystals into your home decor.

Magical blessings,
Sisterlisa

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Leo Solar Eclipse Bears Witness to the Lioness

August 21st we are going to see a solar eclipse like no other. We live in an era where the Goddess (in all her many forms) has been walking to and from on the earth and in the heavenly places to show us she is not dead. She truly lives. After thousands of years of patriarchy authoritarians, from churches to politics, the Divine Feminine is rising in strength and grace.

 

Of all the zodiacs, I can’t think of any other that would roar quite like this one. With each sign we have both masculine and feminine. In the case with Leo, we have a powerful couple represented with Lion (king of the jungle) and Lioness (mother of us all). She is the hunter, the mother, and the chooser of her mate. She protects, she feeds, and she roars! Hell hath no fury like a lioness scorned! She represents the divine wisdom of the power couple. While the male does fight and protect his pride, the lioness is cunning and multitasks as she surveys her surroundings. She won’t let her cubs go unprotected and her sister lionesses will aid her as the family they are.

When the full moon eclipses the summer sun, the winds will calm and the breeze will cool. It will be that eerie feeling that someone is watching you, maybe it’s the lioness. The Divine Feminine, Luna, takes center stage to reveal the power of the Lioness. In an age of male dominance we look to the Goddess to guide and show us her fierce resolve. If you’re a female Leo be prepared to let your voice be heard and your actions be seen. Luna will guide you and take the heat off.

If you’re rising sign is Leo, take special note to how you’re presenting yourself to the world. Take this time to cultivate your inner Lioness and follow the guidance of your spirit. Maybe it’s time you step out of the shadows and embrace your rising sign for the goddess she is. This could be a time of great awakening for you, a time to walk in the sunlight and let your golden crown be seen and your authority to be known.

If your Venus is in Leo, this could be a time for you to pay close attention to the life partner you’re choosing. Your Venus is how you love and if you love like a lioness then more power to you as you remain selective in choosing a mate. Don’t settle for anything less than a king you can proudly stand next to.

If your moon sign is Leo, then this could be a time to use caution. While this moon is overshadowing the Leo sun, she is known as Lilith the Black Moon. Lilith shines her dark cloak with a reflection that shows you who you truly are. In the beginning, darkness was upon the face of the earth. Lilith is our birth into this life and her fierce dark flame rises high in the sky, along with all the female deities that correspond to her. Kali, Freyja, The Morrigan, Pele, and many more. These are the Kick-Ass Goddesses and their time is here and now.

Now, more than ever before, we live in a time where we can be ourselves. We have more liberty to live out loud than ever before. The Goddesses are depicted as beauty in artistic forms that line the museums of our world, but where do we see the manifestations of the strength of the Goddess in our current times in society? It’s time she makes herself known and she does so through you.

There are many faces to the Goddess and our mystical guide, Jess is teaching a year long course to introduce you to the Goddesses of the nations. Join us as we quest across the continents to revive their legends.

Many Moon Blessings,

Sisterlisa

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When Lughnasadh Changed My Life

After being deeply engulfed in a cult for fifteen years, I vowed to avoid all rituals and organized religion. I had to get my brain straightened out and figure out which part of my spiritual path was due to programming and which part was birthed from a true spiritual awakening. I knew my relationship with Jesus wasn’t going to be hindered, but my relationship with religion had come to a screeching halt.

It was early one summer when I began looking for an outdoor activity for my family to participate in. We had already been avid recycling fanatics and volunteered several times a year for community clean-ups. Our next step was to find a way to not only clean up, but invest our time and energy into the land. We discovered an organized event for native plant restoration and signed up!

We arrived at Bidwell Park and met a woman who was fully prepared to dig into the land. She had the proper clothing for being out in the hot sun, gloves to protect her hands, and a hat to protect from the sun. We made the introductions and she handed us tools to get started. We spent a couple of hours pulling invasive plants and touring through the park as she taught us what needed to be pulled and what was to remain. During all of the hard work, we shared our stories. She too, had left an abusive religious community.

After we completed our tasks for the day, she invited us to a public gathering of her grove. This kind Druid woman extended her hand of friendship and we gladly accepted. “Could be a good cultural experience for our kids!” I thought.

We arrived at a quaint outdoor amphitheater in the park with a fire pit, next to a tall tree. We sat in the outer area for observing and the participants stood within their sacred circle. As we watched the ritual unfold, each part of their ceremony reminded me of my intimate moments with Jesus. I thought my heart had been frozen in time, paralyzed by the pain and confusion of the cult we had been drowning in for years. My soul, that felt like it was gasping for air, had finally broke through a barrier and I gulped a lung full of life giving oxygen. For months I felt as though my soul couldn’t breathe and here I was, coming up to the surface again.

Lughnasadh, the festival of first harvest. The day we break bread and make offerings of gratitude. It’s the time of the season that marks the joy of first fruits and the bittersweet reality that dark days are ahead as Fall guides us into the winter months. For me it was the day of joy that my soul could still receive what Source had for me. I was finally able to realize that my soul’s journey did not need to rely on organized religion. Nature had taken a hold of me and embraced me with warmth, love, and offered me hope. The summer Sun was taking my religious wounds to the depths of the cold winter where it could be transformed by Mother Earth. I didn’t need to worry about the darkness, because I knew the Light was already working on my behalf. I looked forward to the journey from Lughnasadh, the first of the Harvest festivals, to Imbolc, the first of the Spring festivals. My heart sang of healing and hope, the hope that a new spiritual life was ahead.

Observing and celebrating Lughnasadh doesn’t require expensive items that are sure to break your bank. It’s a simple ritual of gratitude performed by you and your offerings are humble scatterings of oats, wheat, or seeds. Though this simple ritual seems meager on the surface, it’s meaning is deep and rich.

What do we have to be thankful for?

What seeds did we plant and how have they manifested this year?

Every gardener knows the excitement of seeing that first green bean, or that first plump strawberry. I’m reminded of the decision we make in that moment.

Do we gobble up that first gift from the earth or do we share with those closest to us?

Do we think to share with those in need?

Here is that tipping point where we either grow as a spiritual being or we create disease of the soul through greed.

Lughnasadh teaches me to grow from a thankful heart and share with others.

This first harvest is not to be confused with the final harvest. We still have work to do. Our garden still needs nourishment and we need to be careful to keep the beds clear of weeds that would like none other than to choke our vines and steal our fruit. Take only what’s needed, share from our abundance, and keep tending to the work.

While I am not a Druid in any organized fashion, my soul is fed from the beautiful ceremonies and traditions of my Celtic ancestors. As with many of us, our DNA has trickled down through multiple ancestors of our past. We are a melting pot of vibrant ancestral paths and I honor each path of my historical lineage. In the Celtic tradition of my great grandmother’s ancestry, I honor this path with Lugh. Lugh is the patron deity of this festival. He is the patron of scholars, craftsmen, warriors and magicians. I take this into consideration as I choose my offerings for this holy day.

I honor the scholars who have held our history and traditions in sacred space for our generations to learn from. I take my craft of aromatherapy and anoint candles with the aromas that correspond with Lughnasadh. I include the use of my blade and cut the diseased portions of my soul and cauterize the wounds with the blade heated by this month’s hot summer sun. I’m working my magic into my ritual with faith and hope that in the Spring there will be bounties of blessings awaiting me.

My altar of honor for Lugh and my ancestors include the traditional elements of wheat grain, oats, and seeds. Included are the fruits and vegetables of the season (in my region) are strawberries, tomatoes, pomegranate, and carrots. I bake a corn bread and offer honey butter to sweeten the ritual. Lets not forget a chalice for refreshment, sweet pomegranate juice!

I’m not a literalist in my practice. I follow my Guides and allow my intuition to guide me in my artistic placement of the elements on my altar. I encourage you to do the same.

Every portion of my ritual is a layer of magic that keeps me grounded in my practice. To learn more about layering your magic in personal practice consider joining my group on Facebook.

Magical blessings,

Sisterlisa

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