Wednesday, September 28, 2011
I decided to start this giveaway early, so the winner has enough time to enjoy their new and adorable Witch candle from The Sacred Feminine! Owner Montserrat has generously donated her witchy and lovely scented candle for the Samhain giveaway. Some of you may know, I've done giveaways and an art feature for her before. Her artwork is inspiring, and I'm incredibly addicted to her lovely smelling candles. Her and her wonderful business is such an inspiration and Im so happy to be featuring one of her Samhain candles here!
Here's a little background on Montserrat and her business:
Hi my name is Montserrat. I started my candle company in 1996, Candles by Montserrat, wanting to create spiritual and holistic candles to aid us with our prayers and rituals. My candles are made with natural essential oils, and cotton wicks. They are made for you, at the time you order them, so that the oils are fresh. All my themes are spiritual and the candles are designed by me, including the labels, that depict my original images. I find that most of the candles sold these days are made by people who don't really care about the candles. It is just a job for them. It is easy to see why you should clear a store bought candle before you use it. All my candles are a conscious creation into which only high and inspiring thoughts and intentions are projected. You will feel the difference.
The Witch candle being given away is scented with a blend of cinnamon and orange leaving a lovely Autumn scent. Enjoy!
Now for the rules to enter, go to Montserrat's shop: The Sacred Feminine and come back here to comment on any items you like. For extra credit, Check out her facebook fan page and become a fan. The giveaway will last for one week, at which time I will choose the winner using random.org. Make sure I have a way to contact you in case you win! Have fun playing and Good luck!
Posted by Tara at 4:43 PM
Friday, September 23, 2011
Today is the Autumnal equinox, also known as Mabon or the first day of Fall. It's the second of three harvest festivals before winter. The start of Fall symbolizes the dieing of the earth and her plants. In the ancient world people, usually the women, would be busy baking lots of breads and harvesting grain, and vegetables, preparing meats, as much as they could before all the crops died. It was a matter of survival back then. Every family had to make sure they had enough food to last them through until Spring. If they ran out in say February, it wouldn't be a good thing. So this was a very important time for the ancient people who lived before us.
Today, just like with the Spring equinox, night and day are of equal length. From now on the nights will grow long, and the days short. It is the time where the bountiful Mother of Summer begins to take her rest, and the Dark Mother begins her cycle. Just like in our lives we experience birth, death and rebirth. The seasons of the earth experience the same, again linking us, and all creatures, to our beautiful Mother Earth.
There are many myths surrounding the first day of Fall. Of course the story of Persephone and her journey back to the underworld. Now her Mother Demeter will mourn her loss until she returns to her at Spring when the earth becomes alive once again. Or the story of Inanna and her descent into the underworld where her sister Ereshkigal ruled. Upon her descent, Inanna was tricked and killed by her sister. While Inanna was stuck in the underworld, the earth ceased to grow. When a magical ritual was held, which brought Inanna back to life, the earth was restored and all the plants started to grow again.
Mabon is a great time for magic concerning prosperity, protection, and harmony. It is a time of balance and a time to give thanks for what we are blessed with in our own lives.
On your Mabon altar, have Fall colors of orange, yellow and red. Vegetables like gourds, squash and pumpkins, also grain and apples. Slice an apple down the center to see the symbol of the pentagram and place it on your altar. Incense with cinnamon, frankincense, myrrh, and pine. Fall leaves, images of the Fall Goddesses; Demeter, Persephone, and Inanna. Also a pomegranate is a symbol of Persephone and her time in the underworld.
Wishing you all an abundant and harmonious Mabon! Happy Fall!
Image courtesy of Wendy Andrews
Thursday, September 22, 2011
Thanks to everyone who entered! I hope you had fun playing. And the winner is.....Dana owner of By Land, Sea & Sky blog! Congratulations! Thanks to Mickie Mueller for donating her beautifuk pendant! Check back later this month to see her artwork for the Fall features coming up this weekend! I hope you enjoy your new pendant Dana! Thanks for playing!
Posted by Tara at 4:21 PM
Thursday, September 15, 2011
This months giveaway comes to us from the lovely Mickie Mueller! Im sure some of you already know her beautiful artwork. She also makes jewelry and other nice accessories, and she has graciously donated one of her gorgeous pendants for this giveaway!
I had the chance to speak with Mickie, here's what she had to say:
1. Please tell us a little about your business.
My name is Mickie Mueller and I've been creating art ever since I can remember. I grew up beneath the great mountains and the desert sky of Albuquerque, New Mexico. They aptly call it "The Land of Enchantment." Both of my parents were prominent artists and craftspeople in the area, and I was influenced by many of the great artists of the Southwest, all friends of the family. In my late teens, I moved with my family to the green rolling hills of Missouri were I now live and makes my home and studio. I began working as a freelance artist in 1983 right out of high school, showing my award winning art in local galleries, and my work appearing in newspaper ads, and CD/cassette covers for local rock bands. I even worked for awhile as a computer colorist for comic book companies like Marvel, D.C. and Dark Horse to name a few. By the mid 1990’s, I was moving away from creating other peoples visions and began nurturing my own signature fantasy art style as I began creating images from my heart and imagination. I began delving into the magical world that I saw in all places of nature, finding fairies, nature spirits, and Goddesses living in the trees and forests. I developed special techniques like adding magical herbs to my paint to further make my art spiritual and magical. I now consider myself a Professional Bohemian, creating art, writing, crafting, and teaching classes and workshops for a living. I've created three oracle decks that are published with Llewellyn, The Well Worn Path, The Hidden Path and The Voice of the Trees, A Celtic Divination Oracle that just came out this year. My husband and I run an Etsy shop selling prints and gifts with my artwork on them most of which we create using dye sublimation equipment right in my studio. My new project I'm working on now is a Tarot Deck called The Mystical Cats Tarot for Llewellyn that I'm working on with Lunaea Weatherstone, that will be out in 2014.
2. Do you have a favorite piece of artwork that you create?
I think my favorite piece of art is usually the last one I created. I really love the process of creating, bringing a vision into reality. That being said, I do have some long standing favorites Blessings of the Triple Goddess being one of them. I think this is one of my favorites because of many reasons, one of them being the many forms that she has manifested in. Seeing that piece having been made into jewelry, statuary, and even selected for a Norwegian school textbook about religions and ethics has been very exciting and keeps that image growing and changing through the years. Another favorite of mine is Drawing Down the Moon, the scenery was inspired by a very relaxing week spent with my husband Dan at Lake of the Ozarks. Many of the reference photos were taken while the two of us explored the lake on wave runners. I can't look at that piece without remembering that week.
3. Please explain the item you are giving away.
Autumn Masque Glass Crystal Art Necklace The art on this classy sparkling pendant is mounted on the back, the beveled edges are faceted adding a bit of sparkle, and the art looks brilliant shining out from behind the 1/4 inch thick pendant. We print the artwork right in our studio, then we heat press it and the special dye transfers to the treated back of the crystal. If you hold it up to the light, it shines through. The size is just perfect, 1 inch wide x 1 1/2 inch tall, with a beautiful silver tone bail. This pendant comes on a sepia colored satin 18 inch cord and has a chain to make it adjustable up to 20 inches. They are packaged in a little craft jewelry box with white padded insert as shown, tied with a silver cord. These are securely shipped in an additional box to arrive safely to you.
Ok so now for the rules to entering. Go to Mickie's Shop, and come back here and comment on some of your favorite items. For extra credit, follow Mickie on her blog. The giveaway will last for one week, at which time I will choose the winner using random.org. Make sure I have easy access to your contact info! Thanks to Mickie for donating her beautiful pendant! I hope everyone has fun playing.
Posted by Tara at 2:03 PM
Saturday, September 10, 2011
Dream incubation is a technique used in order for a specific dream to occur. Basically it's "planting a seed" in your mind before sleep, focusing totally on your issue, so your answer will come out in your dreams. Dream incubation is an ancient practice that was used in many different cultures such as Malta, Egypt and Greece.
It is said that people would commune with their Gods before sleeping, asking them to reveal their answers in their dreams. In Greece, people would prepare for their dream incubation's by fasting, purification and prayer for three days before entering the Dream Temple at the Oracle at Delphi.
In ancient Malta, dream incubation was said to have taken place in the underground labyrinth like structure called the Hypogeum. This is where the famous figurine known as "The Sleeping Goddess of Malta" (pictured above) was found. It seems as though the Hypogeum might have been looked at as the womb of the Goddess, where you came for comfort, healing and divine guidance through dreams.
The people of ancient Egypt held dreams in very high esteem. They believed that one could communicate with the Gods during dream time. As well as heal sicknesses , practice magic and travel to the underworld. It is said that the dreamer would recite a prayer to their God before sleeping, and then record their dream upon waking.
In the ancient world, dreams were taken more seriously and many were seen as divine visions and messages. Even Native American cultures took dream and vision quests to seek divine guidance. So it seems the practice of using dreams to receive divine messages or visions is a very ancient and widespread technique that many people used.
You can try your own version of dream incubation today as well. Before bed, take a cleansing bath or shower, light some incense and keep it near you when you go to sleep. Call on your Goddess and ask for her divine guidance in a problem your facing. Write down your problem, and think about it before going to sleep. Make sure to have a journal or a piece of paper and pen next to your bed so you can record your dreams in the morning. Thank your Goddess for her guidance and leave a small offering if you like.
For more info on dream incubation check out Wikipedia
Saturday, September 3, 2011
Athena was the state patroness Goddess of Athens in ancient Greece. The famous temple The Parthenon on the Acropolis was made in her honor and was said to house an enormous statue of Athena inside. She was seen as a Goddess of wisdom, courage, strength and war. The myth of her birth is quite interesting. Athena was the daughter of Zeus and Metis. Once Zeus found out Metis was pregnant with a girl, when if she had been pregnant with a boy, the child would have been more powerful, he was raged. So he tricked Metis and ended up swallowing her. Soon after, Zeus became plagued with horrendous headaches, so he ran to Hephaestus, the Smith God, and asked him to open his head. So he opened Zeus's head and out popped Athena fully grown and ready for battle.
To quote J. E. Harrison, a British classical scholar and feminist, Athena's birth "is a desperate theological expedient to rid her of matriarchal conditions". This was a time when the male power was taking over, and this myth shows their force of dominance. This would give the males more authority and power since the act of giving birth is only part of the feminine make up. All the same, she was still a very powerful and loved Goddess in ancient Greece.
Often depicted with a bronze helmet and a spear, Athena was talented in many different areas including crafts. She was said to have invented the trumpet, was a master weaver and maker of metal work weapons. She was said to lead battles and help many heroes such as Odysseus and Heracles. She was also a virgin Goddess. Her sacred animal is the owl and her beloved Ericthonius, her serpent. Athena became foster mother to this snake when Hephaestus tried to rape her, but she got away, and his semen fell to the earth and impregnated Gaia, who then gave birth to Ericthonius. Some of her statues often depict her with this serpent along with her spear and helmet. I actually saw two of these statues in the Vatican museum when we were in Italy this past Spring.
Call on Athena when you need wisdom in your own life. Or the strength and courage to overcome any battles, inner our outer. She can teach us to be strong and confident in ourselves in the face of adversity. To learn how to form our inner strength and make us wiser in the end. Also call on her when making crafts.
Her sacred tree in the Olive tree, sacred animals are the owl and the serpent. On your altar to Athena, have colors of silver red and white, crystals of azurite and lapis lazuli, A picture or statue of the Goddess, some olive oil, representation of an owl or serpent, and/or an athame.
Enjoy gaining some of your strength and wisdom from this powerful Greek Goddess!
For more on this great Goddess check out Paleothea.com and Theoi.com
Photo courtesy of HranaJanto.com
Posted by Tara at 6:36 AM