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Welcome to Erin's Journal! A journal is something that grows with time, not something that you write a few thoughts in and forget about. I hope to keep this growing the same way. I also consider this website to be my "Book of Mirrors" which is a personal journal kept by any Gesith in addition to their Book of Shadows.

Those of you who have been coming here for a long time have probably noticed that there's been a major name change and a lot of changes around here. If you haven't visited in some time it's like the world was destroyed, but actually this has been happening over time for a while now. To find the full story, check out these links:

Let me explain this page for a bit. Most of the pages in this Journal are static, meaning that once I put something up, it tends to stay up. This page, however, is fluid. It changes almost daily. This is the feed for my blog. I have a WordPress blog on this site, mostly to facilitate expressing my thoughts to everyone. This is the dynamic section where you can read my current thoughts on matters, my health, my complaints and just quick opinions. It's not meant to be the same page as it always is.

If you are new to Erin's Journal then I suggest you start with this post New to the Journal and then go and read the topic called "Erin's Journal" over on the left. That should give you a lot to get started with, and many more things to think about. My personal favorites are My Biography, The Site Dedication and The Site Purpose.

A friend of mine likened this page to the introduction of a magazine, and in some ways she's right. This is a page that tells you what this Journal is about. So read on. In brief, this is one Druid's thoughts on life, spirituality, Wicca, Druidism, religion and all those things that affect humanity. Even some snarkiness. I teach through here and use this as a medium to preserve my beliefs for my daughter and her children.

Make sure you understand my Copyright Statement and that you follow it. As it says in the footer, you may copy and put articles from this site in your personal Book of Shadows and use it for yourself and your family, but you have to have it credited to me. Please make sure you follow this, it is the one unbreakable rule here.

Now, ON WITH THE SHOW!

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How to Get Started in Wicca

Erin

One question that just about everyone has ever asked in the online forums is this one: “Hi! I’m new to Wicca and I just started. What do I do now?”

The slew of answers that the questioner will get will generally boils down to one word: “Read”.

Believe it or not, gaining knowledge is about 60% of what you have to do in this case, beginning on this path. The rest is actually practicing and getting the practical knowledge under your brain and in your fingers. But reading and gaining knowledge is the primary thing you have to be doing.

Why? Most people who start in Wicca or any esoteric path have a basis in their faith that they grew up with; most likely (at least in the United States) that faith is Christianity. Because of this, there is a lot of dogma and information that one must gain during the first little bit of the Path, and that requires study.

So the first thing is to read. Read whatever you can about Wicca and Paganism. Read about New Age mysticism. Read about Hindu beliefs, read the Buddhist philosophy. Read the Koran. Read the Bible. Read.

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A letter to my family

Erin

Dear Family,

I know you read this site, probably not regularly, but often enough to see this. So I’m writing this letter to you all to inform you of some things.

Originally posted 2011-01-04 17:03:51. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

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Q&A

Erin

This is a list of questions I got in an email. Apparently the person had sent this several times trying to get them answered. I don’t know if they got it in response, but here are the questions and my answers.

Originally posted 2015-03-12 01:44:38. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

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The Path of Druidry

Erin

By Penny Billington
Llewellyn, 2011 $18.95 US
ISBN 978-0-7387-2346-4

Review by Erin

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

During my time reviewing various books, I’ve focused on Wicca and other pagan paths, focusing on basic beliefs and pan-pagan beliefs. I’ve only had a few opportunities to read about the belief systems of specific groups. To date, I think I have reviewed only about four Druid books, and I’ve been incredibly lucky to find that those books, as a group, are exceedingly good.

The Path of Druidry is no exception.

I went into this book trying not to have any preconceptions, and it’s a good thing I did. This book really isn’t like much else out there. It has chapters, yes, yet, in each chapter there are unique items that need to be highlighted.

First, the information contained within is about as complete and accurate as you can get without actually joining one of the more well known of the Druid orders out there. I found little to fault in what Penny Billington says in those chapters and chapter parts.

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The Soap Opera of Mark Continues….

Erin

Links relevant:

October 27, 2003

Well, truthfully, while I would wish that this would all just die, the saga of Mark V goes on. He apparently found the Notice, and went crazy. So, here is the new sets of crap he’s sending my way. I share this only as information for each of you, FYI. I’m ignoring it, not taking any action one way or another.

I will address certain accusations as they come up, however.

I guess it started with this email:

From:mark ventimiglia
To: daven@davensjournal.com
Sent: Friday, October 24, 2003 2:56 AM
Subject: You are all a bunch of whiny bastards. Hahaha

Hey you, yeah YOU. hahaha. I am laughing at you and ALL those who associate with you. You are all a bunch of whiny bastards. Hahaha! You claim to disassociate yourselves from ME? HA! I dissed YOU queers and animal killers BEFORE you dissed me. You writing that disassocation notice about me is like the whiny employee telling the boss that he quits AFTER the boss has already fired him. Hahaha. Hey, you ever hear that country song about the singer who makes more money every time the tabloids runs his name in the ground? Well, keep the bad press coming cause it is earning me a fortune! I recently got my statements from the past 6 months of sales from the Wiccan Rede adn the Wiccan Prayerbook and I must say I am pleasantly impressed!

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Paint Your Face Blue!

Other Author

(Note from Daven:  I saw this recipe, and I just couldn’t resist.  Might be fun to do on one Samhain.  Really scare the socks off the Fundies.  LOL)

Paint Your Face Blue!

by: Kaylinn Iceni

Did you watch Braveheart and wish that you too could paint your face blue and charge around screaming, shouting and scaring English people? Well, now you can (although I wouldn’t recommend the latter unless you enjoy getting arrested, there are groups about who will let you do it officially while participating in mock-battles).

The chemical the ancients used to dye both skin and clothes, is called indigo and it is still used today in large quantities to dye jeans. It can be found in quite large amounts in the plant Indigo, but more famously can also be extracted from Isatis tinctoria-also known as Woad.

Woad grows easily in moderately warm climates such as northern Europe, and where it does grow it does so voraciously- So much so in fact that in some states of the USA it is illegal to grow it at all. This problem can be solved however, by cutting back all but a few plants every two years (it grows biennially) before it has a chance to seed. In places where the plant is illegal to grow you should still be allowed to purchase ready grown samples from suppliers, but please do check.

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Affecting people on the Internet

Erin

Magickal disciplines have been around for centuries, all except this one. Why? The Internet in its current form has only been in existence for about 15 years or so, making this a still budding discipline.

Yes, it is possible to cast a spell on someone whom you know only as a screen name and/or IM buddy. It’s not that much different from affecting someone who is standing next to you in real life.

You need no tools, no props, no special ceremonies or special words of power. All you need is your trained will. As always, this is the key to successful magick.

And now, allow me to give you some theoretical background. When you cast a spell, what do you do? You raise the power, you chant the chants, you channel that into your desire, you add any emotions you may be feeling, you state your purpose and you send that energy off. But where does that energy go? Is it a physical thing? Does it actually drain out of you?

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Rhiannon, The Lady of the Birds

Erin
The Lady Rhiannon

The Lady Rhiannon

I’m unsure of the copyright on this image, so don’t try to take it or use it.

While this is the altar image I use for my rites, I must tell you all that Rhiannon is the Lady I call upon in my personal ceremonies.  I was introduced to Her when my wife and I were trying to think of Deities that we both felt comfortable calling upon, and trying to find a Lord and Lady for our ceremonies.  My wife is somewhat of a Welsh maniac (having been married to a Welshman for 15 years prior to me) and she was thinking of Celtic Deities when Rhiannon popped out.  I felt an instant connection to Her, and we have been using Her name ever since.

I started reading more and more in an attempt to get a handle on just who Rhiannon was, and I found the Mabinogion.  In there, there are two stories about Rhiannon out of 4 branches.  The first is when she is courted and married by Pwyll and the subsequent trials she went through with Pryderi, her son by Pwyll.  The second is after the hero’s return to Great Britain from Ireland after the war in which all the Irish were wiped out.  Which is also told in the Mabinogion.  It is her growing love and respect and eventual marriage to Manawyddan, brother of Bran the Blessed.

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Daven’s Meditation

Erin

This is the meditation I most often use to get into a state of trance.  There are elements here common to most meditations and guided meditations.  I explored this concept in part in a class I teach on Astral Projection.  Here are the common themes that most meditations and guided meditations have in them:

  1. Suggestions to relax
  2. The feeling of a safe environment around you
  3. Lack of distractions from the world
  4. A sense of comfort and love
  5. Pictures and visualizations of a scene that is pleasant for you
  6. A descent of some kind.

You may see these themes as you read through the meditation.

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Sit or lay down and become comfortable.  Relax your body completely and start thinking about these scenes.

Find yourself in a wooded area.  The sun is warm on your back and head, and the breeze is cool on your face.  There is just enough of a breeze to disturb your hair, but not enough to make you uncomfortable.

There is a path under your feet.  It leads to a distant place, and you know that at the end of this path, you will find many wondrous things to do and to experience.

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Tarot of Bones

Erin

By Lupa
Self-Published, 2016, $35.00
UPC: 041967093889
Purchase at: http://www.thetarotofbones.com/

Review by Erin

Rating: ★★★★½ 

Full disclosure first: Lupa is a really REALLY good friend of mine, and I’ve reviewed a lot of her works. However, that being said I’m going to be totally honest in this review.

This is a specialty deck. It is nearly an oracle deck, but it isn’t a deck that a new tarot reader can pick up and start reading with. I’ll talk about the several reasons for that in a while.

The artwork shines in this deck. Lupa is a member of the “Vulture Culture”, which is a shorthand way of saying that she works with dead animals. This includes taxidermy, but mostly her art expresses itself in taking bones, leather and fur, and releasing the spirits of those items (if they want to leave), recycling it into something beautiful and selling it to those of us who appreciate this.

So, I have the deck now, and the artwork is GORGEOUS. She took the animal bones and other items she uses in her artwork, assembled them into a display and had them photographed for the various cards. This is 78 different assemblages, and there’s an extra card that she had made as a thank you for those who supported her Kickstarter. So that’s 79. And they are beautiful.

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