Cleansing the Body

Cleansing the body is as much a mental and psychological – and spiritual – thing as it is something physical.  Cleansing the body, in this instance, is something more than just taking a shower.  It is taking into account the recognition that much of what we put into our bodies, and what we expose them to, is “impure” or “unclean”.  In many cases, these impure or unclean substances are created by society.

Many people have differing ideas of unclean.  For some of us, a cleansing may be as simple as using only stuff that is “primary” – has only gone through a few steps before it reaches us.  Things like fruit and vegetables, as well as simple bread, or other grain products which we could/have made ourselves.  People tend to think of mixed substances – cookies, cakes, hot dogs – as impure or polluting of our bodies.

Is this leftover from the Jewish standards?  Or is it simply our subconscious recognition of the idea that not all of what society does is good?

In any case, we are faced with a problem.  How do we cleanse the body?  What do we have to consider?

  • Is this a “for-good” cleansing?  A permanent lifestyle change?  A specific defense against current circumstances?  Or is it something that is going to need to be repeated either on a schedule or by how we feel?  If it will need to be repeated – can we create a smaller event for maintanence?
  • How much time can this cleansing take?  How busy is your life?  Is this a fifteen minute cleansing?  Or a week long one?
  • What do we consider necessary for this cleansing?  Diet?  Hygiene?  Emotional Connections?  Personal psyche?  Pain?  Meditation and contemplation?  Deprivation of senses or material goods?
  • How effective do we want this cleansing to be?  Is it simply for the body, or for the mind and spirit as well?
  • What restrictions will be on us during the cleansing period?  No talking?  Fasting or limited eating?

A very simple cleansing ritual that would last all day, and weave in and out of every day activities is one that I most often use.

When I wake, I shower.  During my shower I pray and meditate for peace and strength and wisdom.

When I dress, I dress simply – nothing in my clothing that is representative of a mood.

When I eat – if I eat – I choose foods that are simple – fruit, fruit juice, milk, water, toast, vegetables, etc.  I stay away from large meals and fast or prepackaged ones.

Before I eat – if I eat – I offer a prayer as a way to make myself conscious of my actions.

When I have free time at night, I will pray and meditate once more.  I sleep naked or with little clothes on, to represent my natural state. (And to be truly free, you will be skyclad in all your rites)…

I do not practice a maintanence rite, but if there was one that I would like to pick up, it would definitely be ritualized hand or foot washing before entering my own room or the ritual room(if I had a ritual room).

What do YOU do for your cleansings?

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Top Ten Things A Witch Learns Over Time

Hey guys –

No worries. I may have mentioned that my bicycling trip from Buffalo to Albany is taking place soon (As in, I leave tomorrow) but there shouldn’t be a lack of posting. I’m going to set my friend up to post on my behalf pre-written things to keep you all entertained while I work my butt off over 400 miles of New York. I believe it is going to be a top ten list, as I will be gone starting tomorrow, the fifth, and won’t return until July 13th. With that in mind, here is the first of my completely arbitrary, just now composed list of the Top Ten Things A Witch Learns Over Time.

Number 10: Cleansing is not the “Cure All”

I know that we’ve all had our days where everything has just gone wrong. Where no matter what you do, even the simple acts of grounding and centering yourself seem forced, if you can do them at all. The people in your life are grouchy, you can’t seem to get yourself out of a hole you’ve dug, and all you want to do is start over.

I know what ails you: Life. And let me tell you, from at least my experience, cleansing is not a cure all. What I’ve found, at least, is that the actual act of cleansing is a great idea – as long as the space is entirely your own. But when you cleanse something else – say, a shared dorm room – you may find that things only get worse.

Just a theory of mine, and it may not be shared by others, but I think that when you cleanse something that is not yours, you put your footprint on it. And with that footprint comes your sudden ability to heft the karma of that particular space onto your own shoulders. And suddenly, you’re feeling the urge to drink if your roommate is an alcoholic, or the urge to bitch if your shared office space is used to voice complaints in.

Sometimes, the best you can do is ride the waves. We, as witches, are supposed to be masters of our own reality, able to pick and choose where we want to walk. But, it’s a work in progress. Perhaps a cleansing followed by physical steps taken to remove the ill – a talk with your roommate or coworker – may better serve to fix the problem. After all, if all we hand to do was sprinkle some salt and water, and cense some incense around to fix all of our problems, let’s face it: Life would be no fun.

Number One of the Top Ten Things A Witch Learns Over Time « Pagan Pages.

Number Two of the Top Ten Things A Witch Learns Over Time « Pagan Pages.

Number Three of the Top Ten Things A Witch Learns Over Time « Pagan Pages.

Number Four of the Top Ten Things A Witch Learns Over Time « Pagan Pages.

Number Five of the Top Ten Things A Witch Learns Over Time « Pagan Pages.

Number Six of the Top Ten Things A Witch Learns Over Time « Pagan Pages.

Number Seven of the Top Ten Things A Witch Learns Over Time « Pagan Pages.

Number Eight of the Top Ten Things A Witch Learns Over Time « Pagan Pages.

Number Nine of the Top Ten Things A Witch Learns Over Time « Pagan Pages.

Top Ten Things A Witch Learns Over Time « Pagan Pages.

Resetting the Body

Do you ever have those days when you just totally wipe?  And how often this process repeats itself is an indicator of stress or change?  My body likes to show its unhappiness with its own existence through the use of migraines.  Like the one I’m starting to get right now.  It says to me, “You have actually f-ed me up to the point that I’m not sure which way is up or down, and which sensation is hot or cold, and all I really understand is that this blinding pain in my head is not fun.”

And so, although a short post, allow me to shed light upon the lesson learned:  We need balance in our lives to maintain a healthy existence.  And whether your stress shows in headaches or anxiety or sudden lapses into bad or odd behaviors, it’s all the same.  The lesson?  Let your body reset.  And then try to give it a fighting chance.

In magical terms, this may be meditation or some other healthy habit that we pick up as “skills” along our path.  Perhaps a simple prayer in the morning would stave off this unwanted pain.  Some sort of stretching routine, perhaps, could alleviate some of the physical triggers of what ails me (or you).

In any case, I will feel better in the morning after passing out for a few hours and allowing my body to regain its fighting chance against the world.

Blessed Be!

Self Image in Circle

This topic might draw a few readers, but it is one that I find extremely important.  How you see yourself reflects strongly in how a circle casting will go.

Having a good body image is always essential if you walk the path that we do.  The gods speak to us, and they say, “you are the leaders of the world…when you walk forward, the world takes the step with you…but when you stumble, the whole world begins to fall”.  Being confident in yourself, how you look, your intelligence and your spirituality is the first thing that any one will see when they meet you for the first time.  If there is an uncertainty, it will be found.

Now that I’ve made it sound like every time you meet someone, its a test…let’s talk about the circle.  The Circle is drawn, as you know, with the basic method of purification, censing, sprinkling, casting, calling the quarters, then calling the spirits and Gods.  This layering of steps causes a magnification in all that you do within the circle.  Because the circle is a container for which to hold all energy raised within, the energy spirals around and around.  Think of it like a never ending funnel  that you send a coin down – it just keeps getting faster and faster, stronger and stronger.

This in mind, entering circle either unclean or unsure of what you’re meant to do is probably a bad idea.  When I was in sacred space with my High Priest, one thing he said struck me very truly, after the circle was done.

“These are your Gods.  When you speak to them, have pride.  You should never be afraid of them.”

He was right.  The reason I had spoken so softly in that instance, was not from fear, but more from awe.  It was the first time I had raised energy with my High Priest, and his voice had dropped unbelievably low, and the air had practically shimmered around us.  I spoke to the Gods silently, and instead of waiting for signs or feelings, they answered me back.

Needless to say, the point he brought up was very relevant.  If I had been frightened, or not confident in what I was doing, the effect would not have been as strong.  We would not have been as close to the other side as we were that night.

Have a great day!