Secret life of modern-day witches By Lynette Horsburgh

 

Kathy Rowan-Drewitt
Kathy Rowan-Drewitt concealed her fascination with witchcraft

It is 400 years since the Pendle witch trials led to 10 people being hanged for witchcraft. But do modern witches still suffer prejudice?

He has carved out a successful career as an employment lawyer.

But the 38-year-old, who is sometimes known as Myrddin, also takes part in activities which he prefers to keep secret.

For Myrddin is the head of a witches’ coven in Lancashire.

He said: “We don’t do anything sinister like Devil worship and we don’t make human or animal sacrifices.

“We honour, revere and give thanks to nature. We celebrate the seasons. It’s not all blood and gore. In spring, we celebrate life and rebirth then in the winter, decay and death to make way for new life.”

His coven in Chorley is little more than 30 miles from Pendle, where in 1612, 10 people were seized amid claims of being involved in witchcraft.

But, 400 years later, prejudice against witches stills exists, according to Myrddin.

He said: “It comes from ignorance and fear of the unknown and it is the reason why rituals and celebrations are held in secret.”

Witch school

In his spare time, he wears a cloak “or something warm for the great outdoors” and heads up a magical working group practising traditional witchcraft which includes druidry, shamanism and wicca.

He said there is no conflict between his day job and his spiritualism. “My philosophy is to live in honour and honour every living thing, our landscape and the world we live in.”

Since he was a young child, Myrddin has had an affinity with the countryside.

He said: “I could feel the magic of nature. I was brought up a staunch Christian but it wasn’t enough and I realised there was label for what I felt – paganism.”

The coven celebrates eight Celtic festivals across the year and the moon cycles in the Lancashire countryside centred around a campfire where the motto is “eat, drink and be merry”.

Hazel Woods, of the Pagan Federation, said there are witches of all social classes and occupations but prejudice means many are still reticent about declaring their beliefs.

Kathy Rowan-Drewitt, 51, from Blackpool, runs her own witch school and has taught more than 60 witches.

She said: “Many still keep being a witch secret from their family, friends and work for fear of being treated unfairly or thought of as weird.

“Times have changed but calling someone a witch is

READ MORE HERE: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-lancashire-19211852

Why Does Santa Claus Give Coal to Bad Kids? | Mental Floss

iStock/bonchan
ISTOCK/BONCHAN

The tradition of giving misbehaving children lumps of fossil fuel predates the Santa we know, and is also associated with St. Nicholas, Sinterklaas, and Italy’s La Befana. Though there doesn’t seem to be one specific legend or history about any of these figures that gives a concrete reason for doling out coal specifically, the common thread between all of them seems to be convenience.

Santa and La Befana both get into people’s homes via the fireplace chimney and leave gifts in stockings hung from the mantel. Sinterklaas’s controversial assistant, Black Pete, also comes down the chimney and places gifts in shoes left out near the fireplace. St. Nick used to come in the window, and then switched to the chimney when they became common in Europe. Like Sinterklaas, his presents are traditionally

READ MORE HERE:

https://www.mentalfloss.com/article/31910/why-does-santa-claus-give-coal-bad-kids

Quarter Days and Pagan Fire Festivals

In some modern Pagan traditions, including some forms of NeoWicca, the eight sabbats or holidays are divided into two groups: the fire festivals, or cross quarter days, and the quarter festivals. Some belief systems celebrate only one group — either the quarter or cross quarter days — and others mark all eight each year. Which ones you observe will depend on your own magical tradition, as well as which of these sabbats is most meaningful to you.

Did You Know?

  • The term “quarter days” is derived from a system in the British Isles in which four specific days each year were marked as a time to collect rents, hire new servants, and resolve legal matters.
  • Some traditions of Wicca and NeoPaganism celebrate only the quarter days, while others observe only the cross-quarter festivals.
  • In some belief systems, all eight days are celebrated annually, forming the system we call the Wheel of the Year.

Quarter Days

Pagan altar and spiral works outside next to a tree. Wicca and witchcraft.
Sven Jakubith / Getty Images

The quarter festivals, or lesser sabbats, include the solstices

READ MORE HERE:

https://www.learnreligions.com/quarter-days-and-cross-quarter-days-2562061

15 Wonderfully Cozy Bread Recipes That Taste Just Like Fall by Claire Sibonney

One of the most exciting things about fall (besides showing off our new knitting projects) is baking beautiful sweet loaves and breads using our favourite harvest goodies — freshly picked apples, pears, squash and pumpkins — paired with rich, warm spices. Bring on those carbs and cozy sweaters!

9 Winter Solstice Superstitions & What They Mean That Will Prepare You For Dec. 21 By ALLI HOFF KOSIK

 

Hugh Pinney/Getty Images News/Getty Images

I’m sure your top concern as we approach the upcoming winter solstice may be just how many more minutes of sun you’re going to get during your commute each day, but the truth is that the event is steeped in history and tradition that goes far beyond our modern taste for convenience and, well, light. With history, of course, comes superstition, so I did a little research and pulled together some details about some winter solstice superstitions, where they come from, what they mean, and how they play into the way we observe the month of December in modern times (if at all).

First, a brief lesson in what the winter solstice actually is: According to the trusty Farmer’s Almanac, it’s the day each year that has the fewest hours of sunlight, thanks to the fact that the sun reaches its southernmost point and begins moving north. The winter solstice is also the first day of the astronomical winter (the meteorological winter kicks off several weeks earlier). Since 2017’s winter solstice will take place on Dec. 21, the days will begin getting longer as of Dec. 22. Did I just make your (very short) day?

Now that we’ve got the basics down, check out these superstitions.

1. Dark Spirits Walk The Earth During The Winter Solstice

Shab-e Yalda — the Iranian festival that celebrates the birth of the ancient sun god who triumphed over darkness — is celebrated on the longest night of the year, aka the winter solstice. To observe the festival, a feast of watermelon, nuts, and pomegranate seeds is consumed… but that’s not all. Because of the light vs. dark symbolism, ancient lore holds that evil spirits wander the earth on this night stronger than ever, according to MentalFloss. There are shades of similar superstitions in Celtic and Germanic folklore too.

2. The 2012 Winter Solstice Should Have Been The End Of The World

Remember the 2012 end of days hysteria? Thankfully, it was nothing more than a superstition — but it was a superstition rooted in Mayan history. The winter solstice of that year (Dec. 21, 2012) corresponded to the date 13.0.0.0.0 on the Mesoamerican Long Count calendar and was the end of a 5126-year cycle. According to the superstition, these numbers were symbolic of the end of the world, or some other catastrophe.

3. The 2012 Winter Solstice Should Have Kicked Off A Worldwide Transformation

The flip side of the “Winter Solstice as the end of days” coin? The New Age belief that the significance of Dec. 21, 2012 was one of rebirth and transformation. Some believed that the Earth and all of its inhabitants would experience some sort of wonderful metamorphosis on that day.

4. The Winter Solstice Honors The Coming Of The Light

If you’ve been counting the minutes until you can leave the office when it’s still light outside, this one should make a lot of sense to you. Given the fact that

READ MORE HERE:  https://www.bustle.com/p/9-winter-solstice-superstitions-what-they-mean-that-will-prepare-you-for-dec-21-7593175

Secret life of modern-day witches – BBC News By Lynette Horsburgh

Kathy Rowan-Drewitt
Image captionKathy Rowan-Drewitt concealed her fascination with witchcraft

It is 400 years since the Pendle witch trials led to 10 people being hanged for witchcraft. But do modern witches still suffer prejudice?

He has carved out a successful career as an employment lawyer.

But the 38-year-old, who is sometimes known as Myrddin, also takes part in activities which he prefers to keep secret.

For Myrddin is the head of a witches’ coven in Lancashire.

He said: “We don’t do anything sinister like Devil worship and we don’t make human or animal sacrifices.

“We honour, revere and give thanks to nature. We celebrate the seasons. It’s not all blood and gore.

READ MORE HERE:

https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-lancashire-19211852

Charming Magick online Shop

My Witchcraft shop is online and open. Come over and purchase all the quality, handmade Magickal products you need & desire.

Thanks,

The Silver Sage Witch of NewFound-Life.com & Charmingmagick.com

https://www.charmingmagick.com/

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