Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Mabon Craft - Shrines!!

I am supposed to be posting pictures from Yule to Mabon, but it just doesn't seem right to post stockings and holly right now especially after RippledWater's lovely tribute to the season. So I decided to look for more appropriate crafts and found the WWP swap from September 2009 - it was a tribute to shrines! I hope these pictures will bring back memories for some of you.

Tribute to Bridget from EdelC to DanniQuee
Shrines are excellent pagan craft as they allow for the expression of gratitude toward a particular season, god, goddess, animal, totem, or any other personal entity - whatever inspires you!

Start with a center piece - something that represents what you are paying tribute to. While this may be the focus of your shrine, it does not have to be the literal center location. Asymetry can add character and interest. You can gather items from your yard to accent your focal point. Be creative!

Mother Earth, Father Sky from DanniQuee to EdelC

Small items such as altoid tins or matchboxes make great vessles for shrines, but don't be afraid to think beyond the box. Non-traditional shapes and materials make intriguing shrines that make an impression!

Green Man Shrine from ellemir to Phizzychick

Above all have fun. Celebrate yourself and your tribute of choice. Let the inspiration flow. Don't worry about it being perfect, glue can be unstuck.

Happy crafting for a happy harvest!

Tribute to Beauty phnxreign99 to altered mommy

Friday, August 27, 2010

Mabon~By RippledWater

The cycle of the year has turned once again and is drawing to a close. Mabon is the last sabbat on the wheel before Samhain, which has long represented the new year to many of the ancient agricultural societies. Mabon is a sabbat all about balance, reflection, change, and giving thanks. It's a time for honoring the Earth for all of its sacrifices and for providing us with the harvest that will lead us through the winter, ensuring our survival. This is also a sabbat of balance both celestial and within ourselves. Light and Dark equally enjoy each others company during this special moment of the year. Once this moment passes, light gives way to the dark and the days grow shorter and colder. On this sabbat we should see the balance within ourselves as well. We are not just physical beings, nor are we just spiritual. We should strive to be a combination of both and to make sure neither plane overtakes the other within our lives. It's a hard battle we fight everyday. To balance time with friends, family, members of our spiritual community, and to balance time with our crafting, work, other hobbies or necessities, and everything else life throws our way along with balancing who we are as a person is a near impossible task. But on the equinox, the universe is showing us that it is possible, even for one day a year, for anyone to be able to strike this balance. Mabon is also about change. It brings about the season of crisp, cool air and leaves turning colors. And we begin to look within ourselves and reflect upon what we have sown within our own souls, what has taken root within us. This is the time for letting go and for making these changes we want and need so bad. The leaves on the trees are shaken off and taken away on the winds. This leaves the trees burden free and allows them a clean slate to start over with in the spring. There can be no room for new growth in the future if we do not let go of what has already served its purpose and is no longer needed.

Mabon is a favorite time of year for me. It's not yet freezing and it's no longer scorching hot. I like to sit outside somewhere and just listen to and watch the changes around me. The leaves are turning colors, the flowers are dying away, and the birds are busier than ever preparing for their winter flights. There is something liberating about an Autumn wind. It's kind of like the Earth is sighing, almost to say "Ah, made it through another year." I think its safe to say that we all have problems in life. And we get so consumed by them that we let the negativity just take hold of us. I know that I definitely feel that way. So, when I sit outside, during anytime of year really, I just let the wind blow through me and take with it everything negative that I've been hoarding or that has latched onto me. And as it takes away the leaves and rustles them around I imagine it taking away my troubles. Mabon is pretty special for me this year. I consider it an anniversary. This Mabon will serve as one year that I have been out and active in my local pagan community. So it signified a huge change for me last year. I went from not knowing any other pagans and feeling completely alone, to getting to know some amazing people and even being able to call them friends. And I've begun to balance my Pagan life and my non-Pagan life into one nice little life together. This Mabon, like last year, I will be attending a Pagan Pride/Mabon/Harvest Moon festival (don't you love how we celebrate everything on the same day around here? lol). There's workshops, an open ritual, and no event around here is ever finished without a drum circle. It's going to be an amazing day and will lead me to have a perfect ending to this year. On the home front, I have already started to work on a few changes in my life as of this week. As Mabon rolls around I'm sure I will have much more I want to work on and let go of. My personal ritual at home will most certainly consist of purging (which in my case always involves lighting something on fire!) and reflecting on the past year. So much has happened since last Mabon and I have so much to look back on and be thankful for!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

First there was...

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