Spell a Day – Jan 11th 2016

Today’s focus would be on using a locket or some piece of jewelry for magickal work. For the uninitiated, using the ‘k’ in magickal is to differentiate this type of spellwork from illusionists or tricks done for entertainment. I just think it looks better. More mysterious. Like saying Theatre instead of Theater. That swap of the letters trips up the eye and makes the reader stop, thinking, ‘Hmm, this is important or special.’

I never did much work with talismans of this sort. I have never made a hex bag, but I do thank the Winchesters for showing me how many times.
HexbagSupernatural

Some people find them very useful in their spellwork. I was always more of a gemstone/crystal person myself. Something about the feel of stone always made me feeler closer to Mother Earth.

In the second book in my Family Traditions series, I explore the use of a talisman in the form of a family heirloom passed down to the main character from his uncle. I am hoping to have this volume edited and out in the fall. A talisman for magickal work can be just about anything as long as it has meaning to the wearer. Many people of Christian faith wear crosses or crucifixes as a show of faith. These pieces of jewelry are ‘technically’ talismans of a magickal nature because of the belief that God will intercede on the bearer’s behalf. I am not trying to start a religious debate, but I do find it ironic that the Bible several times condemns the pagan use of these amulets or talismans, however you find quite a few of the same items in Christian denominations: rosary beads, Star of David as a necklace, medals and scapulars devoted to Saints or Angels. The idea of special ‘powers’ held by objects is also evident in the use of holy water. I have always thought that religions are not that far different as they like others to believe. It’s just always a “my way is better” attitude that spoils rational and thoughtful debate.  This is probably the biggest part of my break with most organized religion. I don’t need another person who feels they are more righteous with their God to tell me how to live my life. I can pretty much figure that out myself.

I used to wear a necklace with a dragon curled around a pentacle as a symbol of my belief in magick. My favorite was a pentacle with a crescent moon stuck through it with a piece of onyx in the middle. Onyx is supposed to help with warding off negative or harmful attacks. It is also supposed to help with healing and grounding oneself. I am very fond of that necklace. While I don’t often wear it openly, I still have it, tucked away with my runestones and tarot cards and other implements of magick and pagan worship. Always close at hand if I should need them.

What kind of talismans or amulets do you have or use in your life? I am curious to hear about any unique family heirlooms one might keep. Perhaps a locket or something that has been passed down for generations? Let me know gentle readers. Until next time.

On This Day in Literary History – Nov 10th

Gentle Readers, I usually stay away from controversial topics like religion and politics, but November 10th is a day I cannot ignore. The year was 1483, and in the town of Eisleben, Saxony, part of the Holy Roman Empire, the Father of Reformation was born.

Martin_Luther_by_Cranach
Portrait of Martin Luther by Lucas Cranach the Elder

Martin Luther (10 November 1483 – 18 February 1546) was the eldest child and his father had big plans for his heir. After following his father’s plan all the way up to enrolling in Law school in 1505, but quickly dropped out. He began a philosophical journey that led eventually to the clergy. He was a vehement about questioning the Pope’s role and authority, treating the Bible itself as the only true guidance from God. He also denied that Heaven is obtained by performing good deeds. Luther taught that salvation is a free gift from God, through Jesus Christ, that one only has to accept. His criticism of the Catholic Church led to his excommunication. He was also branded an outlaw of the empire.

Though I am not particular religious, some of Luther’s teachings ring true with me. His principle of “Justification by Faith Alone”, to me, is something so many people could be served to think about. I don’t feel that one can “buy” their way into any sort of heaven, paradise, nirvana, etc. The afterlife, which sometimes I question myself still, is either there or it isn’t. I don’t claim to have the answers, which I don’t think Luther thought he had all the answers either. I just am not sure that where anything divine is concerned, mere mortals can get it 100% correct. IF there is a great architect to this universe, I don’t think we would be able to comprehend the intellect that orchestrated all that is, was, or ever will be.

When I was younger I questioned a Southern Baptist preacher on the interpretation of a passage in the Bible. I was looking at the section in its entirety, where only a small verse was used as part of the sermon. I had not intended to offend the older man, I simply had questions. His denial to engage in any sort of debate and subsequent shunning sparked my jaded view of Christianity. I want to be clear that I believe very much in many of the teachings of Christianity. There are great morals and lessons to be learned. I just abhor the way the Bible has been disassembled and twisted to serve whatever “righteous” cause is trying to wield oversight over another person’s life. The hypocrisy has caused my own break with organized religion in many ways as I have grown older.