Using WordPress’s amazing stats features, I’ve been noticing that a lot of people have been coming to my site with search terms like “blood” and “sacrifice” along with some derivative of paganism. I’ve decided to address the issue, perhaps to generate a little traffic, but also to explore the topic. I realize that I spoke of the topic before.
If you’re not Wiccan, and perhaps are thinking about heading along the path, and you see this post and get kind of scared, you can put that fear to rest. In one of our three pieces of classic literature, the Charge of the Goddess, our good lady tells us,
Nor do I demand sacrifice, for behold: I am the Mother of All Living, and My Love is poured out upon the Earth.
Yes, that’s right. She is the Mother. She doesn’t need anything from us except our existence. She asks for nothing, and gives all in return.
Unfortunately, the rest of the world doesn’t work like that.
With any decision, any action, there is always a sacrifice. The way I was taught with tarot was a 10 card spread. And the four cards outside of the six card cross were: Overview of the situation, Action required, Sacrifice required, New Outcome.
As a woman, my monthly blood flow is a sacrifice representative of our lady – if we just bleed for seven days, experience bloating and cramping…for maybe 10 or 12 measely children in the future – imagine what our Lady must go through!
Continuing on, with any spell or ritual where you set out specifically to accomplish something, there is a sacrifice. No, it is not, most of the time, as romantic as a blood sacrifice – sometimes its time, or energy, or creating something, or destroying something.
But, sacrificing your own blood is a serious endeavor, and although not necessary by any means, is often a heavily symbolic gesture loaded with perhaps, enough power, to achieve your goal. I’m assuming that, when blood is used, it is most often used as a way of binding yourself to something. To another, to a concept, to an oath or promise, to an organization. The theory behind blood oaths is that, we don’t break them. Its sympathetic magic, representative of the idea that if we break this oath, this binding, we will die, or bleed, or something bad will happen. Our life force is inherently tied into this act, this decision, this magic.
Now the question is – should I, as a member of the ‘softer gender’, a woman, ever feel the need to take a blood oath? After all, I can Draw Down The Moon. Why should I, as an incarnate of our good lady, representative of the Goddess and life-giver in ritual, one who can speak with the power of the lady on a full moon or in my cycles – use my own blood as a binding? I provide a blood sacrifice once a month. A sacrifice to the existence of man, be what it may. I, and my mother before I, and her mother before her, all providing for the sanctity of life.
I am not being sexist or even feminist by any means. I am merely recognizing the roles that we must play in the cycles of life. There are those who fall out of these roles – and that is fine, has happened for centuries, no problems – those who serve as go-betweens between the sexes – but in the end, in our religion, the woman is the embodiment of life, and man, her consort, not lesser or greater, but equal, and different.
Of course, other sacrifices can be just as symbolic. In the end, it is not necessarily the sacrifice you make that is the catalyst – it is the preparation. It is the action that you take after the sacrifice – your endeavors to accomplish your goal, complete your spell, follow through with your rituals – that will determine how successful you are. The sacrifices, it seems, are for us to remind ourselves that something is important to us. Always a good thing.
So, I’ve touched on blood oaths and sacrifice, and hope that will satisfy my Google browsers. For the rest of you, I hope you keep coming back – I’ll probably be hitting some interesting topics with animals and exercise, as those seem to be the two things I’m focusing on at present.