The ‘F’ Word

monkeyWe live in a fast paced world. That much is certain, but what does it cost to live by the watch. Think about it, we have designed our clocks to be small, to have the ability to be strapped to our body, and to be a fashion statement. Time is our ruler, at least it seems that way. I was recently at a meeting and found myself looking at the watch, not because I had other plans, but simply to know the time. This habit, no, this obsession with time is rooted not only in our culture, but also our own psyche.

We are taught growing up to schedule our time wisely. To create a budget for time, as if it is a commodity which will soon be gone.  This is the culture side of things. Whereas an obsession with beauty and youth is a result of time seeping into our psyche. How many songs have been written with the theme, “die young.” Where the vain and the desperate sing their melodic anthems on top of hard beats and perhaps a guitar solo. Now, before we go further, I want to address that this is not a generational theme, but an industrialist theme. Since the rise of the industrial age and beyond, developed nations have increasingly worshiped youth. While this desire for eternal youth can be seen historically as well, i.e. the search for the fountain of youth, but in a world where time is our god or goddess, we take youth to the extreme.

Likewise, the worship of time leads to a need for success at any cost. If we continue using this analogy that time is a god or goddess among men and women, then what is sacrificed to this unkind deity? In any faith with a deity there is always a form of sacrifice or libation. Tithing in many Christian faiths, berries and nuts in many Pagan faiths, as well as tobacco in some Native American traditions of faith. So, time, also requires a sacrifice. I believe it is the most strict of sacrificial criteria, our own essence, our soul, our youth, our ability to love and grow. When it’s “crunch-time” we get stressed and when we get stressed our mental and physical health falters. To satisfy the clock, is to sacrifice your own self.

This leads me to the focus of this blog post. It is not to point fingers at any group, nor to criticize a behavior, but to perhaps warn the public. The ‘F’ word is a diabolical little word that can be perceived as flippant, or unnecessary to our success-driven, youth-hungry society. Yes, my friends, I’m talking about ‘fun’. When is the last time you settled down, put your watch away, and actually lived? Let’s take a moment for ourselves and no longer work for the clock, but live for today.

Just a thought. 

 
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Paradigms

What is a paradigm you ask? It is an internal road map that was created by our social surroundings, our family, and our own mentalities. Something that not many people realize is that these paradigms can be debilitating at times and keep us as a person from our real dreams, impeding us from reaching our true destined goals.

Let’s think about this a bit more. When we are children we are fueled by passion. There is a sense of “I can do whatever I want!” When people ask, what do you want to be when you grow up, you simply reply with whatever you have fixated on at that point in your life, but as we grow older we are told to get an education, to find a career, and to stick with the mundane. Where has the passion gone?!

These are negative paradigms. A voice in our heads says we can’t do certain things because we aren’t rich, we aren’t pretty, we aren’t smart. This stems from us choosing to limit ourselves. Friends, today is not the day to sit placidly on the side lines. Take your power back! Be who YOU want to be, not what anyone else wants you to be. You are a treasure, not garbage.

If you want to start your own business, start researching how to do it! Make a game plan and stick with it.

If you want to quit your job and do something new, DO IT! Make the decision to love yourself, and to have faith in your decisions, change your paradigm riddled with fear and be a success! Have your plan, set it into motion, and be blessed!

I will be doing this with you, changing my paradigms of fear, rerouting my internal road map so that I can live to my full potential! Join me! 🙂

A prayer to help:

God and Goddess I love thee so, Help me understand this internal woe. Break me free, raise me up, I pray blessings fill my cup. Blessed be!

Blessings friends!!

~Sheldon

My Book :)

Dearest all!

I hope this new post finds you well. In case you have been wondering where I have been, well….The answer is not so easily nor quickly answered. Long story short, I am about to receive my Master’s degree here in the USA and have been working on about 6 projects. One of which I will tell you about NOW!

I have written and self-published my very own book. Yes, my friends, I am now a published author. 🙂 (Hold the applause). The book, entitled “The Lythia Tradition of Paganism and Witchcraft” Within the confines of its pages you will find tons of information on the faith that I follow (Lythia) and many many many practical uses of its teachings. I have also included in-depth ritual examples for each major holiday!

I know that many of my readers are interested in spell work, SO as to not disappoint  I have also included several spells, incantations, and prayers. As well as many examples of how to and when to use each one.

As of right now, my book is available for purchase world-wide on Amazon.com or Amazon.ca or wherever you hail from, be assured you can order my book. For those lovely people who own a Kindle, you can download it there as well.

Much Love: Sheldon

Follow me on twitter: @paganspathway

Stay in touch here on the blog (I promise to write more when Summer roles around).

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Imbolc

This is an overview of how the Lythia Pagans celebrate Imbolc. Blessings and love to all.

Celebrated around February 2 this is the first harvest Sabbat after Yule, the God is an infant. Born at Yule. The days are growing longer and the sun shines bright in the sky. This is a time of happiness. A neat aspect of Imbolc is that naturally this is around the time of the calving season. This is why harvesting milk is such a big deal. This ritual of harvesting milk and getting the heard ready to bring forth the white gold has been passed down for generations. In the past, harvesting milk meant sustaining life. This day is seen as holy because it is a sign that the God and Goddess always provide. Winter has loosened up its mighty grip and the spring is coming forth thawing the frozen hearts and brightening the sorrowed filled minds. The earth begins to yawn and stretch as it comes to life. The harvesting of milk is the first sign of a new beginning. Milk is very important to even those who are not within the Pagan faith. Mother’s milk is the first nourishment we have. Thus the milk of the first sun brings forth an intense need. Fasting allows the body to yearn for what it is missing. The white substance of the mother is coveted at this time.

The day before the Imbolc celebration is a time for cleansing. This is where the notion of spring cleaning came. Cleansing for the Lythia Pagans is an intense part of all rituals of the year. Not only do they clean their bodies and homes, but also the mind and spirit. This is a time of meditation and internal discovery. Brushing off the cobwebs of the faith is necessary for a pure sun to appear and fill the heart. A cup filled with grime cannot be filled with refreshing water. This is the time to bring purity back into the lives of those who have gone cold over the harsh winter.

A week before the actual Sabbat, Lythia Pagans light white candles to symbolize the infant sun. As do many other Pagan sects, these white candles are often placed in the window seals to let the sun know to shine upon that particular home. This is also the first day of a weeklong fast from dairy products. Imbolc celebrates the wonderful flavors of milk. The Lythia believe that one must know what it is to live without. If one does not suffer a day in his/her life, he/she will never know how beautiful life can be. After this weeklong fast, the Lythia have a feast spotlighting dairy products. The celebration traditionally calls forth the young God, but the Lythia do not do rituals involving only a single deity. Each ritual at least mentions the Father God and the Mother Goddess. The God and Goddess rule in tandem and the Lythia deem it taboo not to celebrate both of them during major Sabbats. This is shocking, especially compared to the strong faiths that spotlight femininity and the power of the female presence.

The rituals for Imbolc, traditionally involved a candle lit vigil throughout the field clearing the old energy and expelling negativity and spirits that have lain in the field throughout the winter months. There are far less people now that own farm land than there used to, and thus this ritual may not be practical for many practitioners. The Lythia sect has modified this ritual and made it possible to do it without the field.

Understanding Love

Understanding, this is what many of us wish to gain. We wish to understand life and all that it has to offer, we want to understand love, and we learn to understand why bad things happen in the world.

Living without understanding leaves many people afraid because the unknown is one of the most terrifying concepts of this world. Not knowing what’s next, not knowing which step to take, and not being sure of your own emotions.

We fear what we do not understand. We search for answers outside of us. “Why did this happen?” “Who/what is responsible?” As we search for these answers we lose sight of what really matters. Love, the God and Goddess, our families, and ultimately we lose ourselves.

Many times in life we forget that understanding is within us all, we simply have to find the will to access it. Since we don’t understand ourselves we fear what’s inside, we fear understanding because of the uncertainty of the journey to get there.

When hiking up the mountain to get to Macchu Picchu, there is a struggle through rain, land, and unfamiliarity of the surrounding area. The night will fall and when we cannot see, then we can no longer see the path and our uncertainty is even more intense and thus more terrifying.

To understand the world around us and the situations that arise in our lives, we must understand ourselves and love ourselves.

As a culture, we have taken ourselves out of the equation allowing everyone else, and material things to fill our voids. These chasms of disillusioned love have made us callous and afraid of our own hearts and when emotions and true love come to us, we lose sight of the blessings it has to offer, the healing power it wishes to place upon us. We become wrapped up in the question, “What’s next?” To understand love and the purity it has to offer, we must first allow ourselves to love. We must allow our hearts to open.

Always remember, love does not have the ability to hurt. True love is pure, kind, unconditional. The heart closed by caution and infected by the septic slime of fear will never usher in true love, and thus only infatuation and pain can come forth.

My friends, we must find love within ourselves, for only by this can we truly love another.

Here is a prayer that I have found myself using from time to time. I hope it helps you find the love and understand in your heart.

Oh Great Mother and Father

I call to You and ask for this

To love like tomorrow will not exist

To open the window of my soul

To allow my heart to be abundant in love

To see myself as love

To know myself as love

To be love

I am love for I am the child of the God and Goddess

I am love, for I know love conquers all

I am love for I believe in the power of purity of the heart and mind

Oh great Mother and Father thank You for all

Thank You for your ear

Thank You for hearing my cries no matter their scale

Thank You for love

Thank You for my life

Love and light sent and received

By the God and Goddess blessed be!

Love to you!

Have a blessed day!

~Sheldon

PS: Make sure to check out the Video Blog for video chats about Paganism! Blessings

Fasting

Lythia Pagan Fasting Schedule

Lythia Paganism has man traditions that are upheld strictly. Of course the practitioner can choose for themselves if they wish to uphold them, but it is a part of the faith to fast at certain points throughout the calendar year. Below is a quick guide to the fasts and explanations why. I hope this sheds some light! Make sure to check out the Vlog for additional information on this topic and others.

Likhert (Leek-hairt): This is the first fast. It occurs one week before Imbol c. Lythia practitioners fast all dairy products for 7 days, then on Imbolc the fast is broken with a feast of dairy and other products.

Mirelupt (Mee-ray-loopt): The second fast. This fast occurs for the Summer Solstice until Lughnasadh. During this fast, practitioners cover their head during the daylight hours. This fast symbolizes reverence to the God and Goddess. In the morning a pre-meditated pray is said while putting the head covering on, and at night another pray is said when removing the head covering. (These prayers are made by the individual, family unit, circle that are celebrating this fast) Head coverings can range from a traditional head covering, or a baseball cap (this is a modern alternative).

Lierna (Lee-air-nuh): The third fast is the longest fast. It begins the day after Lughnasadh and ends at Sundown on Samhain. During this fast, the practitioner is not to cut their hair in any way. This is a symbol of the journey of the God from the physical world into the Spirit world.

Vornai (Vor-neigh):   This fast begins two weeks before the first day of Yule. The practitioner chooses something to fast. Yule is a gift giving holiday and it is the celebration of the rebirth of the God.  And so, by fasting something that is prevalent in our lives, we know the joy and blessings of the gift we receive on Yule.

Have a blessed day everyone! Love and light!