Letting the winds of heaven dance between you

It is now our wonderful festival of Beltane. I have to say, I cannot believe it has already come around, entering the second half of our pagan year. But evidence of its being is everywhere right now. The past couple of weeks I have loved walking down my street and noticing how the flowers are blooming. Magnolia trees and their elegant blooms emiting a flowery, heady aroma. There's a house on my road where their doorway is surrounded by Wisteria, lilac coloured hanging flowers (reminds me of bunches of grapes on the vine). The many varieties of coloured tulips - red, dusky orange, black-purple, yellow. Sunshine, beautiful sunshine - I don't even have to wear a coat out at the moment. And bluebells! So many bluebells =D. I could go on (and on), but I'm sure you've been noticing all this yourselves!

We all know that Beltane is about Union, on all levels. The Lord and Lady are now coming into their own, and will be made greater by their coupling. They have blossomed into young man and woman, embodying the act of creation that is bringing nature into bloom. This is also a time for relationships.

I want to share something about the rune Gebo (it comes back round to the Beltane thing, just bear with me!). Gebo is the rune concerning partnership and union. In the Book of Runes, it says this . . .

"For true partnership is achieved only by seperate and whole beings who retain their seperateness even as they unite. Remember to let the winds of heaven dance between you."

This certainly has truth in it. If you become too attached and throw your whole being into something, you could lose yourself in the process. If you are fully yourself, and love yourself, the energy and love you provide for others is more wholesome and powerful. It comes with no attachments or expectations, no neediness or commitment - just a true offering of love and joy.

I heard somewhere that the earliest interpretation of the word 'virgin' was 'a woman unto herself'. What does this mean? We can see this in the wild and untameable goddess Artemis - the eternal virgin, who still had relationships with men. Although she had sex with them, she still was a virgin - someone who needed no man to complete her. Wildly independent, answering to nothing but her own will, someone we can all learn something from. Be content within yourself, and have the strength enough to be yourself. So when you're next with the person you love, or just entering into a new relationship, love joyfully, deeply, honestly and wholeheartedly - but most importantly be whole.

A call for support

As some of you know, I'm trying to raise money for War Child by climbing Mount Kilimanjaro in December. But, I can only get there if I raise £5000 in sponsorship money *shudder*. In order to help raise money I have made a website (which you can find via the links on the right column). To add to my awareness raising arsenal, I have now made a blog! Send Me Up Kilimanjaro '09.

Please feel free to go over and have a look, follow, leave a comment etc etc. If you're also inclined you could leave a donation ;P. I need all the help I can get, I'm feeling incredibly overwhelmed.

But most importantly, it's worth popping over there just to see the picture of me on there that I made. I think the 'tash looks rather dashing lol.

Many thanks in advance!

I have been tagged! - 7 facts about myself

The wonderful and wise Jan from awake is good has been tagged, and in turn, has tagged me! Although I think these things can be quite cheesy, I do actually like to read what people put when they get tagged, I only hope that this will be as interesting to you as it is to me when I read other peoples.

Here are the rules if I tag you!

1. Link to your original tagger and list these rules in your post.
2. Share seven facts about yourself in the post.
3. Tag seven people at the end of your post by leaving their names and links to their blogs.
4. Let them know they’ve been tagged.

Better get on with it then :)

1. When I read a book non-stop for a long session, afterwards I start to think and speak in the same style the book was written.
No joke. I start referring to myself in third-person, use descritptive and emotive language in my head, and use phrases and laguage that the book characters and author have used. Imagine what my internal voice sounds like when I've been reading Shakespeare! This always happens, and is humourous and annoying at the same time.

2. The tarot card Strength is very important to me, and is what I'd call my 'signature' card.
A long long time ago, when we were about 13, a friend and I did a tarot session where we asked which card was spiritually linked to us, 'our' card. She pulled out The Lovers - which is totally apt for her - and I pulled out Strength (if my friend ever reads this I wonder if she remembers?!). Since then Strength has appeared many times in my life and carries with it my most important lessons. When I was in the military hospital, I received a small silver amulet with an angel (which looks suspiciously like the maiden in the card) carved on one side, and the word Strength on the other, from someone I barely even knew. I have had some powerful dreams concerning this card too. The meanings of this card have a lot of significance for me. I also plan on getting a tattoo of this card, with a tiger substituted for the lion (the Tiger is my animal totem). I could write an awful lot more but I'll spare you the boredom, lol.

3. I've always secretly wanted to be a performer.
I can't sing. I can't dance. I can't play an instrument. This isn't me fishing for pity/flattery, tis true - my 'talents' lie more in the visual field. But dammit, I have so often dreamed of inspiring people through music and words. There is nothing quite like when a rhythme pulses through your body and song lyrics that touch you so much that it feels like they were torn from your own heart. Due to a real lack of talent and confidence in this department, I know I could never really do it, but that doesn't mean I can't daydream! I have been told I'm good at writing lyrics and words, although I question the truth and sincerity of such comments!

4. I love storms.
Like, seriously. Thunderstorms just send my soul soaring. When I'm running through torential rain and the thunder rumbles so loudly it feels like the world is exploding and cracking my ribcage open it's such an adrenaline rush. All that awesome power, it humbles you.

5. My dreams are what link me to the divine.
A lot of people often say how they have psychic gifts. I am not one of those people. I can't read/see auras, feel my chakras, cast a circle, have clairvoyence/sentience/audience, raise energy etc. It's enough to make me think that there's nothing beyond the physical at all! But I do have my dreams. They're very vivid, and I have had one precognitive dream. They feed me spiritually and emotionally, so beyond my control yet such an integral part of my being it really makes me feel as if there is something bigger out there, but more importantly within me too. It's my dreams that lead me to my animal totems, my deities, revelations and inspirations. Even though I can't even cast simple spells or feel energy, I can go to sleep knowing that whatever I dream that night is my connection to the divine.

6. I would love to be a part-time tattoo artist.
Now, unlike the performer thing, the tattoo artist dream is more achieveable for me. I just love them. Although I don't have any myself at the moment, which is because I can be a total perfectionist/control freak and have issues with finding someone I trust enough to put something on my skin that we be there for life! Giving people a tattoo of something that is so meaningful to them that they want it under their skin sounds awesome, and imagine all the great people you get to meet and all the stories behind the tattoo you'd hear. Also, they just look cool ;).

7. I was named after a comet.
Halley's comet to be precise (hence my name Haley, lol). I was born the year and about the time it passed over the earth. Being named after a comet is cool. But I now have the theory in my head that since I was born the year it passed overhead, I will die the next time it appears! So I'm writing my will ready for when I reach 76, lol.

Hope that wasn't too agonising!

So here are my tags, and no hard feelings if you are not in this, or have been tagged too many times in the past to want to participate. I tried to pick bloggers I am intrigued by and that I hadn’t seen tagged for something like this recently, but I might have missed it if you were…(This is not an original paragraph. I borrowed it from Lisa/Jen.)

Debra @ She Who Seeks
Medusa @ Gorgon Resurfaces
DarklyFey @ Live from the Red Leather Couch
Celestite @ stumbling upon the path of the goddess
Sue @ The Creative Spirit
Suzi @ Spirit Whispers
Laurel @ Happiness is . . .

Thanks so much for the tag Jen, it was a lot of fun doing this! I'd have tagged you if you hadn't got to me first, lmao.

Henna watercolour and body painting

My new close friend at work has been teaching me how to do mendhi, aka henna painting. I've always wanted to learn, and she brought in some henna powder after work so that she could show me. It was so much fun, and I practiced on other members of staff in the staffroom, lol. Then last week on Friday we held a henna painting session for the girls at lunchtime club, and they simply loved it. They're already bugging me and her about when the next one will be! Anyway, over the two week break we now have I'm gonna be shopping for some more henna stuff, so we'll be fully prepared next time (we were making tubes for the henna out of transparent file holders and label stickers, lmao). In the mean time, I've done a couple of henna-like doodles in watercolour.

I really need to get a scanner so that you can see the colours properly. Doing these little 'doodles' was really an excuse for me to use the gum arabic I had bought ages ago but had never used. It's simply liquid latex that you can paint on to bock out areas of white that you want to keep, then you can lay a wash over it. Once it's dry you can rub off the latex and you're left with crisp white! I'm very happy with these little experiments, I can fortell more gum arabic fun in the future ;).

Carrying on with the henna theme, I decided to do some myself at home, without the sound guidance of my friend and mentor. It's hard to get used to, but I'm slowly improving. What I really need to work on are the actual designs. Those patterns you see mendhi covered women with look easy but believe me, they aren't!

That's the henna powder, just before I mix it with a little water. The smell of the stuff is wonderful, so earthy and exotic.

That's a little design I did on the side of my foot, I was quite happy with it. That was until I wne to start the one on my hand, crossed my legs like I always do, and smudged it all over my foot and the floor! I'm sooo clever.

I'm satisfied with the final design. Thing is the henna powder I've got isn't fresh, so it doesn't produce as deep a colour as you'd hope it would. Still, that will be rectified when I find a shop to buy some fresh henna from. There's also different recipes you can make to produce better results, but I'm too inexperienced at the moment, I'll try them when I'm more confident. Anyway, I still have a lovely golden coloured design on my hand which will be there now for a few days (again, not fresh=lighter colour and shorter life span). Hope you like my henna-tastic endeavours!

Daemon Quiz

I just love Northern Lights, and since reading that book I have always wondered what daemon I would have. Hence why I took this quiz ;)

Your result for The Golden Compass Daemon Test...

Multi-Faceted Soul

In a way, you are a truly balanced person. You have a good sense of self, but you have periods of worry and self doubt. You don't like to be alone a lot, but you don't like being constantly surrounded, either. You can be shy in some situations and bold in others. You can tell people how you feel, but you don't wear your heart on your sleeve. You aren't "TOO" anything: You aren't too shy, you aren't too aggressive, you aren't too extroverted, you aren't too introverted. However at any one time you can be any combination of these things.

You tend to adapt yourself to match the situations in which you find yourself. You may be quiet and sensitive with some people, or joking and loud with others. These are all facets of your personality. People tend to perceive you as they want to perceive you. They may even tend to idealize you a bit. Then, when you do something that doesn't fit their concept of who you are (like have an outburst of anger, or a fit of shyness, or make an insensitive joke)they can be shocked and surprised. Does anyone know the real you?

Your daemon would represent your multi-faceted and ever-changing personality, as well as people's tendency to idealize you. He or she would get angry when you did not, be calm and poised when you felt ruffled and anxious, and always be the voice of emotion and reason in your ear.

Suggested forms:Swan, Elephant, Koala, Panda, Chameleon, Wolf.

Take The Golden Compass Daemon Test

I'll take the wolf, thankies, lol. Go and take the quiz, tis good, and let me know what you get!

About Me

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United Kingdom
I am a pagan, special needs teaching assistant, BA Hons Drawing graduate, artist, amateur tarot reader, half-welsh, big sister, eldest daughter, lover, volunteer, bookworm, intense dreamer, nature and animal lover, over-protective friend, ex-barmaid, fledgling activist and general eccentric. Nice to meet you =D.

Please sponsor me in raising money for War Child!


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