Danesbury Hill

On our way back from the West Country yesterday, we stopped at Danesbury Hill.  This is a Celtic Iron Age hillfort, most of which was dug by an archaeological team headed by Professor Barry Cunliffe from the sixties to the eighties.

Danesbury Hill is lovely to walk along.  We saw four different types of butterflies : chalk blue, marbled white, red admiral and an orange one I have yet to identify.  There were lots of flowers, including self-heal, clover, yellow vetches, forget-me-nots and some yellow ones which I didn’t know what they were.  There were also two ponies grazing the land.  I think I saw a medlar tree, but since it’s the first I’ve seen I need to check it in my identification books.  Medlars are unique in that the fruits of the tree are only edible when they are rotten.

I took an offering of water into the midst of the hillfort.  There is a place there, which has a ring of trees around a central tree which is very unfriendly to humans and very powerful.  My betrothed, who’s not sensitive to such things, could sense that there was a boundary.  I gave the offering and the hillfort seemed less hostile to me.

Book Habit

I went to Treadwell’s bookshop at the weekend, fully intending only to buy “Celtic Myths and Legends” by T. W. Rolleston.  I read a copy belonging to my sister many years ago, and since then I’ve wanted my own copy.

I knew Treadwell’s had a copy as I saw it when I went for a ritual [detailed here] and because of the ritual I had a £7 credit note in my purse.  Then I saw a copy of Brian Day’s “Celtic Festivals”, which I’d read and was on my to buy list, so I had to get that.

I’m also buying a book on charms via post, so that gives me three books, plus one on order via my local library, plus another I’m currently reading and two on trees which I bought a while ago.  Which equals seven.

It’s a good thing I have a job to support my habit, now I just have to find the time to read them…

Halfway Through Making a Stang

I am in the process of making a stang, which unfortunately is getting interrupted by This Damn Wedding of mine.

I have oak wood for the stang, which was given to me by a tree I often talked to.  The wood is split into three pieces, which I will put together by dowel rods.  It’s being delayed because I first have to make a water blessing so I can give the tree I take them from an offering.  The wood for the main body of the stang was lying in the water, so I did not have to make an offering.  Then I will have to wait for the wood for the dowel rods to dry and carve out the spaces for the rods in the wood which will make up the body of the stang.

I was told by one of my goddesses that I was to attach the bones of the sea, the bones of the earth and the bones of the air to my stang.  I was given a mouse and four birds courtesy of my cat.  Normally there is nothing strange in this, but before now my cat had caught three birds in the entire eight years I have had her.

I have to wait for the mouse and birds to decompose so I can attach the bones to the stang, some of which are going to be put between the pieces of wood.  I have seashells for the bones of the sea, but need something to cut the shells up so they look like bones instead of shells.

After that I need an antler for the top and a nail for the bottom and it will be finished.  Unfortunately this is not a quick project and is even slower with wedding s**t intruding upon it.  I want to get it finished this year (my year begins at the Spring Equinox) but I am not sure this will happen.

In Your own Words

It’s important to use your own words when consecrating items, doing spells or anything else of a ritual nature.

Because you have made these words, they are tied to you and thus the spell is tied to you.  If you use someone else’s words, then they do not have that tie and will not work as well, especially if you do not understand what they mean.

Making your own words can take a lot of work, but in witchcraft, if you want to get results, you have to put the work in first.  Witchcraft is not just two seconds of doing a spell that you see in the movies, it’s putting a lot of work in in the first place.

Of Gods and Men

This book is written by John Michael Greer and is a book about polytheistic gods.  It was recommended to me, but I found it to be dry and uninspiring, probably because the book is a philosophical argument about gods and I hold that either you believe or you don’t believe, and if you don’t believe then I’m not bothered.

If you like philosophy, then it’s probably a great book to read, but it won’t do anything for your path or what you practice.