I've been waking up late the past several mornings, mostly due to the cloudy haze and darkness that it still feels like 4 or 5am, so needless to say I go back to sleep. Today I was up early, awoken from strange dreams, the rain has me wanting to curl up with several good books. Or to study. Or knit. Clearly I can't make up my mind this week.
Christopher emailed this morning to say that Ted Andrews had crossed the veil on Saturday. So sad. I was just thinking of his work last week, how "Animal Speak" is quite essential in any Pagan/Witch library. Such a year of loss, so terrible to lose people who have created some amazing and powerful works this year, such as Andrews, as well as Marion Weinstein, watching more and more of these authors cross to the other side. It's inevitable in the cycle of life, still, quite sad to see them go, hoping that what gets left behind is not just the memory of their work, but inspiration in younger authors who will pioneer as well. I'm not seeing much of that lately. Much of what is being published is the same old same old. It's been awhile since I have felt compelled to pick up anything a new author puts out. Then again my tastes have changed considerable.
I think that most of what gets published now is still for the beginner. Much of the gems for those wanting to explore beyond has been there, hidden in the dust, but I think more than that is this realization that when you get to a certain place in your practice no book is going to tell you how to expand further. As a Witch we must go further within, traveling to the realms of our spirit guides and ancestors and studying with them. These books, these marvelous gems that have greatly impacted my life and still hold value is the foundation. How we create the rest of our journey is truly up to us.
Samhain is but a few days away -- planning on taking Nimue trick-or-treating, even if her cold isn't fully gone, it's once a year and she's quite looking forward to it, lots of layers, she'll be fine. I had thought of attending the NH Witches Ball this year, but instead I may head over to my old covenmates for a ritual. It's not exclusive to her coven and she has extended an invitation which is nice. I believe, aside from ancestral honor, there will be focus on a Buddhist Chod practice -- a practice of cutting through the ego.
Aside from being a Witch/Pagan, I am also a Buddhist practitioner. I took refuge vows back in 2004 and, for me, the combination of my Pagan, Shamanic and Buddhist practices and training has all tied together nicely. One has directly influenced the other, and it has flowed. My old covenmate is aware of this. In fact we were both together for my refuge vows and did a White Tara Empowerment with His Eminence Garchen Rinpoche. It was most enlightening, and it created a massive shift in consciousness for me.
I'm also doing a bit of house cleansing around here, preparing for the new year, clearing out the old, both physically and spiritually, and making way to allow for the new.
Also, as Samhain approaches, I will be closing the gates to ADC for another season until Imbolg of next year. I like this approach, allowing it to open at certain times, giving those who really want to be part of this group (and simply not just join for the sake of adding Dianic groups under their belts) a chance to really be part of something that I hold dear to my heart. Hard to imagine how long this group has been going. I was still a girl without a voice, taking over because I didn't want to see it go, and now, it's intimate and safe, and it makes me hopeful for what can happen when you gather in the flesh, because we have allowed ourselves to strip away the layers, and we're each digging and sharing deep within. It's not an easy task, and the atmosphere of permissive energy is quite needed in this oftentimes harsh, patriarchal world. It gives me further hope for what comes next.