Webs of Woven Words, Threads, Stitches and Enchantments

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Day of Hygeiea

Today is the Day of Hygeiea, the goddess of good physical health and protectress of mental health. She encourages cleanliness, in diet, of the body, and one's environment, as a way to good health. She shares Her healing wisdom with us so that we may heal ourselves and maintain our wellness.

Ancient people went to the temples of Hygeiea and Asklepios, (They were generally worshipped in the same temples) to sleep and receive healing dreams and oracles. These dreams would address their illnesses and assist them in the pursuit of wellness. Sometimes actual healing was received through the dreams.

The daughter or step-daughter of Asklepios, Hygeiea was sister to Panakeia, all cure, and Iaso, remedy. Hygeiea is most often depicted wearing a long, white, flowing robe, holding a serpent and a patera, a medicinal bowl which holds healing herbs and medicines. The serpent, who partakes of the patera's contents, represents secret wisdom and healing.

For honoring Hygeiea and asking Her assistance, gather the following items: a candle that has been dedicated for healing or cleanse and then dress one with your preferred healing oil. Incense - I have found that an incense of amber or lavender is acceptable to Her as an offering, but you may find something else appropriate. Herbs that have especial healing properties, such as oregano, echinacea, chamomile, mints, and burdock etc. are also appropriate offerings as well as fresh fruit and vegetables. Make a tea of chamomile, mint, and a pinch of oregano for drinking during your rite and as a libation.

Clean your home, take a ritual bath or shower, and dress for your rite. Prepare your sacred space. Begin by calling upon Hygeiea, telling Her this rite is performed in Her honor. Light the candle and incense. Bless your offerings then sip some of the tea and recite prayers, poems, speak with Hygeiea in meditation or trance. Let the candle continue to burn and make your offerings and libation at some sacred place when you feel your rite has ended.

A Hymn For Hygeiea

Hygeiea, lovely, wise one,
The Breath of healing,
Keeper of the knowledge of all that heals, 
She who bestows sacred dreams and oracles
to guide us on our path to wellness,
Come, Lady, I ask that you be here with me.
Come to me, Compassionate One, Kind One,
Come in to my dreams and teach me Your secrets,
Give me strength and knowledge to heal myself,
Touch me, that there arises within me Your healing energies,
Bringing good health on all levels of my being.
May I, with Your assistance, live in balance and harmony
with myself, Mother Earth, and all beings.
With this harmony and balance, I am healthy and whole.
All honor and blessings to You, Hygeiea,
 Wise One, Compassionate and Kind One,
Bestower of the wealth that is healing.

(A Hymn For Hygeiea copyright 2013 E A Kaufman)

May Hygeiea's blessings be upon you and yours.

Blessings nine!


Monday, February 25, 2013

Time of the Old Women

A beautiful lady in lace.

Today is the celebration, Time of the Old Women. I believe it is Moroccan in origin. I have celebrated it for many years to honor my own ancestors and relatives of blood, but also all women of a certain age. These women are forgotten, disparaged, and disrespected by most of the world today. However, in the past, the elderly were revered for their wisdom and honored all the time. Even in the Pagan community, where I would expect better, I read and hear such disrespect and nastiness toward older Pagans. This day is very important to help dissipate that negative energy.

Tonight I will sit at my hearth, my ancestor altar decorated with photos of my grandmothers, as well as photos of Doreen Valiente, Sybil Leek, and other long gone women. Also on my altar will be photos of my mother, aunts, and other older women, especially those involved in the craft, that I wish to honor. I will light candles and thank them for their wisdom, bless a plate of goodies as an offering, and bless wine and tea for libations. Prayers and poetry will be recited, but then I will just sit and be with them. I will send out a blessing and healing energy to all elderly women for protection, peace, good health, and happiness. This is a celebration honoring the living and the dead, so honor both.


I will call my mother today and a few elderly friends just to say hello and let them know I am thinking of them, that I love them and am happy to have them in my life. I will also go to the cemetery and visit my mother-in-law's grave. While there, I will walk around and visit the graves of those women I don't know, but would like to say a blessing for. And... I will be sure to smile and say hello to any woman I encounter throughout my day, sending a little blessing to them too. Nor will I forget myself, no spring chicken, but not elderly either! ; )

A busy day and time to get back to it, as well as planning to honor Hygeiea tomorrow - it is Her day on the 26th!

Blessings nine!

My friend, Helen, with her button necklace. She is an avid button collector and 
has taught me so many things, as well as adding to my own button collection!

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Goddess Psalm # 23

I will lie here at the crossroads till dawn
where She will find me in Her time.
Here I will stay between my world and Hers
until the morning light brings me back.
I stand at the threshold, the space betwixt,
where I am and am not, yet She knows me.
Here in the sacred noplace I am safe
from all that would harm me, under Her care.
I am drawn to the crossroads where the dead cannot rise;
it calls me in whispers that fascinate my mind,
taking me from this world near to the next,
yet not close enough to remain neither here nor there,
not above, not below.
I am who I am when I dance in Her garden.

The Goddess Book of Psalms,
Psalm # 23
by Patricia Della-Piana

Blessings nine!

Friday, February 8, 2013

Festival of Broken Needles

Today is the Festival of Broken Needles. At one time, this Japanese Buddhist festival was honored only by tailors, now however it is celebrated by many who enjoy the art of the needle. I have adopted this festival as one of my own because of my interest and love of embroidery and hand sewing. Embroidery is a favorite pursuit of mine, however I love sewing by hand, even repairing a seam or sewing on a button is, for me, a great pleasure.  I have found two dates for this celebration: December 18th and February 8th. I celebrate on both dates. After all, I use many needles throughout the year

I gather my broken, bent, and/or used needles, end bits of threads from my embroidery, small scraps of fabric, and an offering of seeds, fruit, or bread. I give thanks to my needles for the work they have done as well as the goddesses that inspire my creativity. I bury the needles and place the small bits of thread, AKA "orts", on my hedge, hopefully to be used by birds or other animals for nests. The food offering is left in a sacred place near my hedge. I then return to my hearth, light candles for inspiration, and bless new packets of needles. I usually work on some embroidery as well and consider what a joyous little tool my needle is, how lucky I am to find such comfort and happiness in this art. A simple, but satisfying ritual.

While this festival is based on Japanese tradition, this particular ritual is my own creation.

Blessings nine!

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

The Witch In The Wood

A very favorite song, The Witch in the Wood, by Louisa John-Krol, from her 2006 album, Apple Pentacle. Mysterious and haunting.

Blessings nine!