Thursday, September 24, 2009

Solitary Hellenic Fall Equinox 2009

This was a rough rite, liturgically. I was very emotional, imagine that, but it went well.

Though I had intended to do an Eleusinian Mysteries rite, this ended up being more of a Hellenic Re-dedication.
From the moment I honored Hestia, I began to feel a part of my that has been sleeping for the summer waking up. When I called Hekate to aid in opening the gates, I was smiling broadly. And when I called to Persephone, I almost cried. It felt good to be in the presence of my Olympians once more, and I look forward to the months to come.

Omens were taken as a forecast for the upcoming season:

Shining Ones:

“Flee the very great storm {Zalê}, lest you be disabled in some way.”
Storm: surge, distress; disabled: hindered.
Don’t make a sea-voyage in bad weather. It is futile to fight the force of the ocean; likewise, bucking the inevitable will weaken you and hinder your progress. Avoid raging storms of any kind; save your energy for when it can be effective. Sometimes flight is wiser than fight.

Nature Spirits:

“Phoibos [Apollo] speaks plainly {Saphôs}, ‘Stay, friend.’”
Plainly: distinctly, certainly; stay: wait, stand fast, remain.
Neither advance nor retreat; wait or hold your ground, as appropriate; the best action is inaction. “Phoibos” refers to Apollo as Bright and Pure, which also characterizes His advice in this oracle.


“There are no {Ou} crops to be reaped that were not sown.”
Crops: fruit-trees, corn-fields, crop-lands; reap: mow, cut off; sown: engendered, begotten, scattered.
What we spread about, comes back to us. What goes around comes around. You must plan ahead in order to achieve anything.


“The one passing on the left {Laios} bodes well for everything.”
Passing: going through; bodes: shows, indicates, gives a sign, signifies, declares; well: rightly, happily, fortunately.
Since the left is traditionally the sinister side, the oracle may mean that an apparently sinister thing or event may be a blessing in disguise. The left is also associated with the unconscious, lunar mind, and so unconscious processes or intuition may signal a favorable outcome. A promising sign comes from an unpromising quarter.


Save your energy for when it is effective, stand your ground when appropriate and be careful not to sow that which you do not wish to reap. Appearances may be deceiving. Be aware that blessings may come in disguise.

I am planning an Underworld Journey tomorrow. I am going to go down and talk with Persephone. She and I have some stuff to sort through, most of which involves me not retaining the lessons she taught me last year. Hehe, I think I'm in trouble. Wish me luck, lol.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Be the banjo...

After the venting on my livejournal, as you can well imagine, I had more than a few conversations with some trusted friends in person (or online) that I found to be extremely helpful. I thought I would share the insights I have received and show you how smart my friends are. :)

I was told to suck it up and just jump back in there. Might not seem all that insightful to you, I understand, but sometimes, there is nothing more helpful than a good kick in the pants.

I talked it out with a friend who sometimes has similar feelings. We decided this: when you stand close to the fire, you sometimes get hot, and it causes you to step back. But, when you step back, the absence of heat is immediately noticeable. If I am feeling cold and disconnected, perhaps I should step once more closer to the fire (see above kick in the pants to suck it up and jump back in).

I talked with a couple of friends who told me I am high maintenance because I am a Bard (this is actually a positive commentary; hear it out). I give A LOT of myself, and often, and I need to be filled back up as a result. When I don't get filled up, I feel empty, and it is even more noticeable when the very people I expect to fill me up don't do it. So, I need to communicate that I need recharged, need my ego stroked. Um, this is not flattering, I know, but it is more accurate than I want it to be. Insightful little glimpse of the narcissistic side of myself I try not to invite to the fire, but Diva is as Diva does.

Finally, from one of my favorite people, I received this gem of information that has put it all into perspective: Instead of pouring yourself out to them, why not try to resonate with them.


It was like the sound of one hand clapping; that thought you consider that sends you immediately into a deeper state. And it hit me like a ton of bricks.

I am pushing and pushing and pushing, like an electric guitar with no amplifier. No matter how hard I strum the chords, only those closest to me will hear them, and it will be only a semblance of their potential. What I need to do is be the banjo. A banjo is a five string instrument. The strings are strung much like a guitar, but the body is made of a drum head. The thing that sets the banjo apart is the resonator ring. The Banjo has evolved over time to include this wooden and metal ring that amplifies the sound of the strings and projects it. It helps the banjo stay in tune, makes the single notes plucked more easily discernible and makes the chords ring out--loud, loud, loud.

Back in my Catholic days, I was a cantor. I stood up at the front of the congregation and lead call-and -response-type songs. It gave me a peaceful and beautifully reverent glow the rest of the day because my heart was truly happy doing it. I think that feeling is what I am looking for in the Grove. It worked in the Catholic setting because I stood in the center, struck a chord and with a wave of my hand, the entire congregation resonated with me. In the Grove, right now, all I am doing is strumming the Hel out of an unplugged electric guitar.

So, what the heck does this have to do with finding my place in the Grove? Everything and nothing. It has everything to do with me and nothing to do with anyone else. It is about finding the spot where my chords echo throughout my Grovemates. It is about finding those things within us all that will cause a sympathetic vibration--which will result in resonance. Most of all, it is about me. I need to stop wasting all my energy strumming in silence and let the instrument do the work for me.

Finally, the question of the day: If I am the banjo and my grovemates are the resonator ring, then what, pray-tell are the chords? Those, dear friends, are the sounds of Teutates, playing the strings of my heart.

Thanks, A.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Teutates and Autumn Equinox with the Cranes

I love my Grove. I really do. And I love our Grove's Patron. I really, really do.

I brought Timmy to the rite today, out of necessity. It was rooooooough, but a very dear Grove friend spent quite a bit of time helping with him. And Timmy absolutely loved her. Everyone was so nice and understanding of him. It made me realize why I wanted to be more than a congregant in this Grove in the first place. I've heard that for those with the patience and willingness to pay attention to a child with a disability that s/he will heal you. Boy, they must have been talking about my Timmy.

I missed most of the rite. Timmy plunked himself down almost where the Outdwellers offering was made (kinda fitting, actually), and I only made it over to the rite-proper during the portions I was doing. I was able to come forward to make my offering to Teutates. I took my jar of grain over to the Tree. I placed my hand on the tree, and I whispered a few sentences of thanks and praise to him for all he has done for me and for our Grove this year before I poured my offering. I spent a moment sending my intent to him, and my hand got warm and tingly on the tree. Then, I really felt him beside me, behind me, around me, telling me that I was welcome and letting me know that our offerings, all of them, were accepted in the wonderful spirit in which they were given. I was moved by his presence among us, and I was able to funnel this feeling into his song during the Waters. Shawn said it's the best I've played it yet. I even got Timmy to drink a little of the Waters. We burned the old wooden Garanus statue. It was a little sad, but theatrics once again saved me from an emotional outpouring. :) It was fun to read the Grove Poem, and I was feeling especially pleased with my performance when a hearing-impaired congregant told me she could hear me reading. (Yes, reading. It's long. I do have plans to begin memorizing.)

I wish I would have been able to socialize more, but Timmy was pretty over-stimulated by the end of the rite. It's hard sometimes. He is so quiet, even when he is upset, and sometimes people don't realize that he is having a hard time. I think that my distance in the social setting was understood, considering the circumstances.

Timmy stayed awake the whole way home, but he fell asleep on the floor about five minutes after Shawn and Lisa left. Hehe, me too.

In closing, I would like to appologize for being "angsty" and venting all of my emotions into my livejournal (again). You folks provide me with much insight and healing when I have thoughts weighing on my mind. Thank you for being open and continuing to read, regradless of my apparent negativity. Now that summer is over and my Underworld Goddess is going back to where she is accessible to me, things are looking up.

Oh, and The Ancestors of the Grove are back in their space in my living room. I am pretty excited about that, too.