There's a full moon today and at the beginning of the full moon (in Aquarius, while the sun is in Leo -- talk about powerful) we had a lunar eclipse. I came home early today to harvest sage and thyme from the herb bed to make bundles for smudging. This weekend, I'll buy cotton embroidery thread in 4 colors: Green (Earth), Yellow (Air), Red (Fire), and Blue (Water) and will make about three sage smudge sticks and three thyme smudge sticks (yes, sage is more traditional, but thyme is more special to me). I like to make the bundles a bit loose, so that they can catch fire more easily. I'll hang the bundles in my ritual room to dry.
Many people who write about making smudge sticks recommend making a sacrifice to the land in return for the herbs. I harvested these without the assistance of my normal summer anointment of the sacred oil of the Goddess DEET. So I made a serious blood offering to the land (in the form of the tiger mosquitoes who live here) and I have the welts on my leg to prove it.
There's a Wiccan "rule" that one should never use one's athame for "mundane" things such as cutting herbs. I completely disagree, especially with the notion that there are some things that are magical and some that are mundane. For me, it's all real, it's all metaphor, there's always more. (That's from Adler, somewhere). So I use my athame for the first cut, although, afterwards, I use my more effective garden shears.
Later tonight, I'll do some ecstatic dance with a few other witches and eat a magical meal. Then I have a few witch bottles to bury on my Southern boundary. I don't often blog about these "basics" of witchcraft, but they are what make up the day-to-day turning of the wheel.
I'm a woman, a Witch, a mother, a grandmother, an eco-feminist, a gardener, a reader, a writer, and a priestess of the Great Mother Earth. Hecate appears in the
Homeric Ode to Demeter, which tells of Hades who caught Persophone
"up reluctant on his golden car and bare her away lamenting. . . . But no one, either of the deathless gods or of mortal men, heard her voice, nor yet the olive-trees bearing rich fruit: only tenderhearted Hecate, bright-coiffed, the daughter of Persaeus, heard the girl from her cave . . . ."