Out of time

Knitting takes me out of time. Sitting outside yesterday, in the sunlight, listening to the wind in the trees, watching Corbie puppy-out after bees and flies, I could have been anyone, anywhere (read: at least since the advent of knitting). If I ignored the house with its humming electricity at my back, and the cars on the road, and the planes overhead, I could have been anyone, anywhere. It’s a small step to the side to then, through this craft, reach out and touch my ancestors. It ceases to be about knitting specifically and begins to be about textiles in general, and there is something we all have in common: making portable shelter. Taking some raw material (in this case, essentially thread) and creating something that wasn’t there before.

Jo has summarized very eloquently here part of the appeal spinning holds for me: its timelessness.  Spinning takes me out of time, and often, out of myself as well.  When I am preparing, dyeing, and spinning wool, I could be almost anyone, almost anywhere in the world, at almost any time.  Sure, there are a few limitations on this depending on the equipment being used; spinning wheels first appeared in Asia in the 11th century, and in Europe a century later, but the flyer and treadle wheel we all know and love didn’t follow for a few hundred years after that.  Spindles, however, have been around for as long as people have been covering their bodies with cloth rather than animal skins.  I’m tempted to say this coincided with the switch from being hunter-gatherers to being farmers, but in reality no one knows; people were probably collecting plants such as nettles and retting and spinning those long before sheep entered the picture.

Want to feel closer to your ancestors at this time of turning towards the dark?  Take up a traditional craft.  Spinning qualifies, but so do sewing and needlework, weaving, carving with non-mechanized tools, candle-making, making herbal preparations using a mortar and pestle, and probably a hundred other things I’m not thinking of at the moment.  These crafts take you out of time; they strip away the façade of the modern era and, by so doing, they help to thin the veil.

You can read the rest of Jo’s post here.

Oracular seidhr for October: Sunday the 13th

My next oracular seidhr session will take place next Sunday, October 13th, 2013. If you would like to be included, please email your question to me at: wodandis at gmail dot com.

Also, if you contacted me about seidhr last month but were too late for September, and if I told you I would include you in the October session, please email me again to remind me.  I have a crappy memory due to fibro fog and don’t always find these emails a month later.  To help make sure no requests slip through the cracks, I am also asking that all seidhr request emails have the following subject line: ORACULAR SEIDHR FOR (fill in the month).  Please take care that your spelling of seidhr matches mine or I may not find your email when I search.

Please keep in mind that, going forward, I will be accepting only ONE question per session from each individual (with NO follow up questions, as usual), and limiting each session to FIVE separate querents. In addition, please allow 2-3 days after the session to receive your answer, to account for the fact that Jo needs to type up the dictation she takes down during the sessions, after which I look over and sometimes amend her transcription before emailing the answers off to the querents. I think these changes will make it easier for me to continue to do seidhr in a manageable fashion.

Thank you for understanding, and please email me before next Saturday night if you would like your question included in the upcoming session. Anyone who sends theirs in too late will have the option of being first in my queue for the November session!  (But I will ask you to remind me, as noted above.)

As always, donations are very gratefully accepted, as I am only able to work part time due to my health issues; if you would like to make a donation you may do via Paypal at wodandis at gmail dot com.

More information about my practice may be found here.

Oracles are Wingdings

True words on the nature of trance work, oracles, and seership. It is not a gentle or pretty process, folks–not in my experience (7 years and counting now) with seidhr, anyway…

The Twisted Rope

Alternative title: The Nature of a Trance
Alternative title #2: Trancework Will Make You Its Bitch

I recently read a post by Tess Dawson about Cradling Oracles. In this post, she suggests a number of actions to be taken when working with oracles, visions and dreams. Above all, the message seems to be that in order to be able to experience the “kiss of inspiration” that an oracle brings, you must be clean and gentle.

After reading the post, I mulled over how it is I interact with oracles and visions and I came to the following conclusion: I don’t really think that oracles, visions and dreams are something you cradle. They cradle you (to put it nicely or poetically).

To be more accurate, they drown you and suck you in. You feel the wave of the vision rushing towards you, and before you can even think to run…

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Oracular seidhr for September: Saturday the 14th

My next oracular seidhr session will take place next Saturday, September 14th, 2013. If you would like to be included, please email your question to me at: wodandis at gmail dot com.

Please keep in mind that, going forward, I will be accepting only ONE question per session from each individual (with NO follow up questions, as usual), and limiting each session to FIVE separate querents. In addition, please allow 2-3 days after the session to receive your answer, to account for the fact that Jo needs to type up the dictation she takes down during the sessions, after which I look over and sometimes amend her transcription before emailing the answers off to the querents. I think these changes will make it easier for me to continue to do seidhr in a manageable fashion.

Thank you for understanding, and please email me before Friday night if you would like your question included in the upcoming session. Anyone who sends theirs in too late will have the option of being first in my queue for the October session!

As always, donations are very gratefully accepted, as I am only able to work part time due to my health issues; if you would like to make a donation you may do via Paypal at wodandis at gmail dot com.

More information about my practice may be found here.

Spirits of Ice and Fire

About 7,000 years ago, Mount Mazama (a volcano in the Cascade Range) erupted, and much of its mass collapsed into its center to form a caldera. The resulting 1,900-foot deep pit filled with water from snowfall (there are no underground streams feeding this lake), and Crater Lake–the deepest lake in the United States–was formed. It is an ice-cold, perfectly clear, pristine and pure lake of the most intense blue, ringed with jagged, glassy cliffs, the water broken by only two islands, the wooded Wizard (formed by a cinder cone) and the eerie, barren Phantom Ship. It is a place inhabited not only by water wights but also by snow wights–a melding of water and sky. And yet, the fire etins are still very much present here as well, for the volcano is not extinct, only sleeping.

The Klamath Native Americans believed Mount Mazama to be the home of their god of the underworld, Llao, and saw the eruption as a battle between Llao and the sky god Skell. After the creation of the lake, it became known as a place of great power, a site for vision quests, particularly by those who hoped to become shamans. Dangerous creatures were believed to dwell in its depths, who sometimes emerged to steal people away, especially those who ventured into its waters after dark.

For me, this place has associations with the Well of Wyrd, with Hvergelmir–the “bubbling, boiling spring” at the base of the Well, in which fire and ice combine in a continual alchemy–and with Odhroerir, the cauldron in which the Mead was brewed (the act of brewing being in itself a curious alchemy of fire, water, and earth). It is a holy place, and like most holy places, not a safe place. It is a place that stands, to a very great extent, between the worlds.

I am discovering an affinity I seem to have with volcanoes, and I certainly live in the right part of the world to be able to seek them out (here on the edge of the Pacific Ring of Fire, they abound both in live and extinct form) and make contact with the spirits there. Getting to visit with the spirits of Crater Lake was a rare and wonderful treat.

Huge update at FiberWytch on Etsy: Planetary Magical Cords

planetary cords adI have just  (finally!) completed the huge shop update that life has been interfering with my actually getting done for the past two weeks! The Planetary Magical Cord collection has eaten several weeks of my life and includes 21 cords (not all of them shown below), two for each planet (except for the Sun, which wound up with three because it’s sheshul like that).  I had a lot of fun trying out different spinning styles for some of these, so in addition to my trademark Navajo plied-style you’ll also see cabled cords, supercoils, intermittently coiled 2-plies, crepes, etc., etc., in a bewildering array of brilliant, hand dyed colors.  All of my art yarn planetary cords are completely hand crafted by me all the way from raw sheep’s fleece to finished item.  Farm-fresh, locally sourced fleece is gently hand washed, hand dyed using Greener Shades dye (an environmentally friendly and non-toxic line of professional-quality acid dyes), hand carded on my drum carder, blended with kid Mohair, bits of silk, flax, and lots of sparkle, and then hand spun and plied on my snazzy purple Columbine wheel, Foxglove.

But the cords are not just pretty; they have each been magically charged by me (with planetary symbols, runes and Reiki) at a propitious time for the planet in question.  Handspun needs a bath in cool water to set its twist, and I took advantage of this opportunity to add herbs, essential oils, and gemstones to the rinse water to further enhance the energetic qualities of each individual cord.  You can use these cords in cord magic attuned to the particular planet (or the astrological sign/s it rules), place them on your altar during ritual for a deity whose sphere of influence is in accord with that planet, wear them as a symbol of your magical intention, use them in handfasting rites, or simply enjoy them as fiber art lariats to remind yourself of your magical working or your overall path.

 

Seidhr postponed

I try not to do this, but I am going to have to postpone tonight’s scheduled oracular seidhr session by one day; it will take place tomorrow night instead.  We just had a house guest leave today, and while the visit was fun, both Jo and I need a day to reclaim our space before being able to get into an appropriate mindset for the ritual.

Seidhr for August is now CLOSED…

However, if you have already let me know to expect a question from you and I have emailed you back, then your question will be included!  (As long as I receive it before the evening of Wednesday 8/14.)

I hope everyone is enjoying this strangely liminal month of August thus far.  Today we went on a day trip that felt like a spiritual pilgrimage for me, to what must truly be one of the most spectacularly beautiful spots on earth: Crater Lake.  Formed only from snow water within the collapsed pit of what still remains a viable, yet dormant, volcano, this is the deepest lake in the United States and the water is a pure, crystalline blue. It has been a very sacred place for the Native tribes, and is teeming with spirits; as a place where fire, water, earth and sky all meet and are connected, it forms a powerful conduit between the worlds and I had a number of revelations connecting it with Perthro, Hvergelmir, and the Well of Wyrd, as well as more personal insights showing how it relates to my own path.

At any rate, I took a bunch of photos and a few videos and will be sharing them here in a few days, as soon as I get a chance to upload them.