Posts Tagged ‘astrology’

Once more, in an effort to update my blog more regularly, here’s another installment of Three Things Thursday! Three mini posts nestled together in one for your viewing pleasure!

A warm cup of tea on a cold day. Photo by M. A. Phillips, 2020

Kitchen Magic With My Daughter

Bee is showing more interest in both cooking and magic, so showing her how they can mix is a no brainer! Tonight I taught her how to boil water in the kettle (with supervision, of course). She likes to make things for other people, so I suggested she prepare me a cup of tea while I bake. I instructed her to focus on the water and send a happy wish for me into the beverage. Watching her concentrate was adorable, and she was so proud of herself!

spring equinox river magic excerpt

A dusting of snow fell the morning of ritual, but the group was determined to meet outside among the trees. They gathered at the trail they recently walked in Alexandria Bay. Crimson buds dotted some branches, but the lack of leaves gave their Vernal Equinox an ironic, wintry character.” – Excerpt from RIVER MAGIC by M. A. Phillips

Writing Community

Over on Instagram, I’m participating in a couple writing challenges. It’s been a great way to make new connections in the writing community. It comes with so much inspiration, feedback, and support! I’m so grateful to everyone who takes the time to read my posts, especially the excerpts from my writing. Furthermore, I was touched this week when two more wonderful people stepped forward to beta read my manuscript! As the cherry on top, many others sent me messages of encouragement and excitement as I strive toward my dreams. I’m pleased to inspire others. The writing community is such a vibrant and beautiful place.

“Mercury in Gatorade”


My friend Artemis Fox in Watertown recently started a Pagan podcast called “Fire Burn Cauldron Bubble.” He and Luna Hawks are three episodes in, and their most recent episode was particularly interesting. Cheekily titled “Mercury in Gatorade,” they interview astrologer @illexxandra about the notorious Mercury in Retrograde. I learned a lot! Be forewarned, this show is for adults. They occasionally swear, so you may want to save this until the kiddos are in bed! There are a couple audio issues in places, but they don’t detract from the content. You can download or subscribe to the podcast on Spotify or Libsyn.

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Oh my goodness.  Where has the time gone?  For those curious, I’m all moved into my new home!  Huzzah!  It was a stressful process that disrupted my spiritual practice, but sacrifice is necessary for change.  I’m starting to get back into things, though.  With that, I want to tie up loose ends and finish the 30 Days Magical Roots Challenge.  I’m going to keep this short and sweet as I still have boxes to unpack!  My focus will be how I’ve kept up (or struggled) with the following topics through the move.

Day 16: Connect with Mother Earth

Sometimes, I just took a moment to stand or sit outside, admiring my new yard.  Sometimes that’s all you need.

Day 17: Raise some energy

After I got my keys, the first thing I did was do a saining to purify and bless my home, and make peace with the spirits within and without.  I think I raised a decent amount of energy doing that, all things considered…

Day 18: Elemental magic

While I acknowledge the importance of the four elements in many traditions, I typically work with the Three Realms of Land, Sea, and Sky, as well as the Triple Hallows of Fire, Well, and Tree.  I often see them as corresponding with each other.  Today, I briefly meditated on them as I began putting my daily practice back together.

Day 19: Sacred Space/Circle Casting

I recreate the cosmos as is traditional in ADF Druid rites.  This is largely based on what we know about Indo-European ritual.  I haven’t done much of this lately…  But I did move in a circle when I sained my home.  Circles are sacred.  I like circles.

Day 20: Ethics

I should really reflect on the Nine Virtues and how they relate to moving…  This could be a future blog post.

Day 21: Symbols

Fire, water, trees, and spirals.  I’ve been especially connected to trees lately.  Connecting to them has been easiest for me at the moment.  Fire, and its connection to the heart and home, has also been significant to me.

Day 22: Self-Purification

Ahhh… that first shower after moving was certainly purifying.

Day 23: Book of Shadows/Grimoire

As I packed and unpacked, I rediscovered my first grimoire.  My first boyfriend gave me the journal for my birthday, and I filled that book with what I studied and my own illustrations.  It’s a beautiful piece that I treasure.  I haven’t updated my current grimoire.  I really should…

Day 24: Sabbats

I’ve been talking with my grove about making this the next workshop topic, specifically what our local wheel of the year is like.

Day 25: Esbats

For the last month, I’ve simply been going outside to observe and say some words.  I took note of my surroundings, trying to capture the view to memory.

Day 26: Create a sigil

Have not done this yet.  Thinking about making something to represent protection for my home…  I imagine something I could trace on my door when I leave.

Day 27: Healing

I’ve been all about self-care lately as we recover…  Tea, warm showers, chocolate…

Day 28: Magical Podcasts

I don’t listen to many, lately.  I don’t have a lot of time to devote to them.  I did listen to a lot of music while cleaning and painting, though…  My daughter and I like to dance and sing.  I don’t think she’d have patience for a podcast at this age.

Day 29: Astrology

My sun sign is Sagittarius.  I was instructed to look into my moon sign which is Aquarius.  Much to ponder…

Day 30: Make a commitment to yourself

Now that the pile of boxes is on the decline, my family and I are starting to settle.  As I returned to work and thus my routine this morning, I decided to revive my daily devotional.  I have not erected an altar yet because everything is in such a state of flux.  I’m working on a cabinet to serve such a role.  In the meantime, I simply stepped outside and poured an offering of my tea and bird seed.  I said prayers and took an omen for the day.  It felt right to start my day that way once more.

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A photo of my 19 week belly by Weretoad, 2013.
Baby’s sun sign will be Cancer, so we’re really into crabby things.  Mum and Dad have treated our little one to these adorable crab clothes and a rattle! Photo by Grey Catsidhe, 2013.

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I’m asking my dear readers to indulge me in a brief, new agey digression.  We all experience them from time to time, right?

Astrology is one of those things that intrigues me but never holds my interest.  It’s very involved.  Many who dismiss it outright are only familiar with the Sunday newspaper variety.  It wasn’t until my old friend Katrina did a workshop on making a natal chart that I realized how much work goes into it!  Put aside any thoughts you have on the validity* and just look at what astrologers put themselves through!  All their charts, longitude, latitude, angles, etc…  Okay, my own ignorance is probably showing and badly.  I’ve never been a mathematical person (despite what my rising sign seems to say), so astrology will probably always be one of those things I appreciate as a curiosity but never seriously practice myself.  I acknowledge it and sometimes feel its influence – especially when things go retrograde.

There is evidence that the ancient Druids knew about and even practiced astrology (Ellis).  They were known for being talented and knowledgable with the ways of the stars and planets.  (Here’s a short but interesting essay by Ellis about it:http://www.radical-astrology.com/irish/miscellany/ellis.html)  Their astrology was certainly not the Celtic Tree Calendar that Robert Graves popularized in The White Goddess (Blamires).  It really is amazing how many people still think that’s authentic…  Anyway, I am very interested in learning about the Irish names for celestial bodies and perhaps gardening according to their movements.  As a side note, I came across this website about creating zodiac gardens according to one’s sun sign.  I was intrigued that two of my favorite trees, birch and oak, were associated with my sign as well as my spirit animal, deer.  Deer makes sense considering Sagittarius’ association with horses and hoofed animals.  I don’t know about the other correspondences…  Might have something to do with fire and strength?   At the moment, I’m slowly working on gardening according to the moon using the methodology suggested to me by local herbalist Sue-Ryn Burns.  I enjoy it purely as a way to better connect with and experience the energies of the lunar cycle.

Today I went to dinner with a couple gal pals.  One of them, Corinne of F that S, is interested in astrology so it occasionally comes up in our conversations.  We were talking about sun signs and how natal charts are made up of more than just that.  She admitted some surprise at my being a Sagittarius and was curious how my chart actually looks.  I dug the old chart Katrina helped me with using http://alabe.com/freechart and found that, in addition to having my sun sign in Sagittarius, Uranus, Venus, and Saturn are also there.  While Neptune is in Virgo, Pisces and my moon sign are in Aquarius (which is also my rising sign).  I have something called the N. Node in Cancer (which is apparently what makes me very loyal and somewhat introverted).  The rest of my chart, Neptune, Pluto, and Mars are in Scorpio (my husband’s sign).  Looking at my chart, it’s very top heavy and a good mix of fire and water with a dash of earth and air.   It’s fun to think about…

Do you ever tinker with or think about astrology?

Some resources: 
Blamires, Steve.  Celtic Tree Mysteries Secrets of the Ogham. Llewellyn, 1997. 
Ellis, Peter Berresford.  A Brief History of The Druids.  Carroll & Graf Publishers, 1994.
Ellis, Peter Berresford.  "Early Irish Astrology: An Historical Argument."  Réalta vol 3 no.3 1996

* I once took a critical thinking class in college (philosophy 101).  The professor made us pick from a list of topics, then research and write about why they are not logical.  I’ve a healthy dose of skepticism, but the limited choices available were pretty insulting.  I ended up choosing to “debunk” astrology purely so I could learn more about it!

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