Sunday, February 1, 2015


Solmonath                                                                     februAry

February is the second month of the year and it is the year's shortest month with only 28 days in common years and 29 days in leap years. It was named after the Latin word februum, which means purification because the month was a time for purification. February's birth flower is the violet and the common primrose. The birthstone for February is the amethyst which symbolizes piety, humility, spiritual wisdom and sincerity. Its Zodiac signs are Aquarius (until February 18) and Pisces (February 19 onwards).

It is the month of sol, or hearth-baked cakes. This is the month many Asatruar celebrate the wooing by Freyr of the Maiden Gerd; a symbolic marriage of the God of Fertility with the Mother Earth. In much of Northern Europe, grain cakes were offered for the soil's fertility and Father Sky and Mother Earth were invoked to that end.

Berkanan is the name of the b rune b, meaning birch, growth and renewal.  Birca is the patron of mothers, children and women’s mysteries.  Ehwaz is the name of the e rune e, meaning horse, movement, loyalty, adaptability.  The Ehwaz rune symbolizes inner strength and fortitude. Gebo or Gyfu rune g means gift or to give, for the letter g or gh.  Gifts, both in the sense of sacrifice and of generosity, indicating balance.

The Second Hall is about your own resources. It describes what you value ranging from physical possessions and money, to personal self esteem and talents. This time also rules your personal earnings, bankers, budgets, money that 'you' make, material resources, value system, monetary gains and losses, security. Other keywords include resources, both personal and financial, values and attitudes, possessions, acquisitions and prana.

1 Freedom Day

National Freedom Day is an observance in the United States that honors the signing of a resolution that proposed the 13th amendment of the nation's constitution on February 1, 1865. Abraham Lincoln, who was the president at the time, signed the resolution to outlaw slavery.

National Freedom Day’s theme is about freedom for all Americans.  Wreath-laying at Liberty Bell, which symbolizes freedom or liberty, has also occurred on this day over the years.

2 Groundhog Day

It is a part of popular culture among many Americans and it centers on the idea of the groundhog coming out of its home to “predict” the weather. Although some states have in some cases adopted their own groundhogs, the official groundhog, Punxsutawney Phil, lives at Gobbler’s Knob near Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. Tradition has it that if the groundhog will sees its shadow on February 2 it will be frightened by it and will return to its burrow, indicating that there will be six more weeks of winter. If it does not see its shadow, then spring is on the way.

Thousands of years ago when animalism and nature worship were prevalent, people in the area of Europe now known as Germany believed that the badger had the power to predict the coming of spring. They watched the badger to know when to plant their crops. By the time the first German immigrants settled in Pennsylvania they probably understood that this was not true but the tradition continued. Unfortunately there were not many badgers in Pennsylvania so the groundhog substituted the badger.

2 Imbolc

A day of love.  In Norse, the Charming of the Plow is a festival of fertility and beginnings of the planted seed. Blessing the plough ensured a good harvest, and honored the magical beings—smiths (and in Norse mythology these were dwarves)—who made the ploughs. Metal craft was, for all of Wicca’s ancestral cultures, a great gift from the Gods; iron ploughs worked more land more effectively than wooden ones. Plowing the ground brought the earth back to life again, and a charmed plough brings it back to even more abundant life.

The plow is decorated and then whiskey or ewe's milk is poured over it.  Pieces of cheese and bread are left by the plough and in newly turned furrows as offerings to the nature spirits.  It is considered taboo to cut or pick plants during this time.  Make sure your plough is in working order—its fastenings tight, its blade un-rusted and sharp. Some more modern traditions may use other garden tools such as the rake, shovel or hoe.

Another way to make the day is to meditate upon you dependence on the soil. You live on soil, gleba, Earth, land, erz - whatever you call it, it is common dirt that everyone shares.  Soil supplies over 90 percent of the world's food - rice, corn and wheat.  The early people thought of the Earth as sacred.  Earth was home and the provider of life.  But now the world's supply of soil is shrinking - lost to cities, floods and paved roads. 

Imbolc is the time of swearing of oaths.  It also marks the return of the light and the transformation within us from an inner contemplative focus toward outer manifestation.  The holiday also generally honors all Goddesses and female ancestor spirits who bring blessings of fertility as well as important lessons. This is a good time to recall outstanding women in one’s family line. 

                              With the wisdom and strength of spirit,

                              I open my heart and mind to accept the transformations I have

                              asked for.  With the compassion and courage of spirit

                              I support the people, known and unknown, I have prayed for and

                              with.  Lady and Lord

                              Thank you for embracing those who need you.

                              Thank you for guiding me along my Divine Path with grace and

                              ease.  Blessed be.

3 Full Wind Moon M

Invisible, unpredictable, unreliable, playful, soothing, destructive, inspiring and life giving: the element of air or wind is all these things and much more. Our spoken words are still carried on the winds.  Some tribes also referred to this Moon as the Full Hunger Moon, since harsh weather conditions in their areas made hunting very difficult.  Forced to gnaw on bones and sip bone marrow soup for sustenance, the Cherokee named it the Full Bony Moon. The Full Moon is when the Moon’s energy is at its peak. The Full Moon is the best time for consecrating tools, charging jewelry, working magic to bring something to you, and for raising energy for the Earth or other healing.  Plan a ritual to ask the old ones for help in planning your future.

                              Remember, remember the sacredness of things,

                              running streams and dwellings,

                              the young within the nest,

                              the hearth of sacred fire

                              and life covering the Earth.

4 Rosa Parks Day

Rosa Parks Day is an American observance to honor civil rights activist Rosa Parks, who was known for refusing to give up her seat on a bus. It is a legal observance in California on February 4 and Ohio on December 1.

Rosa Parks Day promotes equal opportunities, civil rights, and fairness across communities in the U.S. Church leaders, politicians, and organizational leaders. Over the years, the Rosa Parks bus has become a symbol of the fight for equal rights. It has been fully restored and is now displayed in the Henry Ford Museum. Rosa Parks' Day, on February 4, is also known as the Day of Courage.

7 Sully Erna Birthday

Salvatore Paul "Sully" Erna (Musician) is an American vocalist and primary songwriter for the American rock band Godsmack.  He is also a guitarist, drummer and pianist, performing these both on albums and during live shows.  Sully Erna has been ranked in the Top 100 Heavy Metal Vocalists.  He has been open about practicing Wicca: "I just want them to understand that Wicca has nothing to do with black magic.  It's not about turning people into frogs or practicing black magic."

11 Wane Moon T

Waning Moon means the Moon is decreasing in size, moving from full Moon to new Moon.  Use the waning Moon to develop flexibility and stamina.

                              Thank you Divine Friends

                              For supplying me with a peaceful home

                              and for making my house a sanctuary for all who enter.

                              Negative feelings are left outside my doorstep for

                              the love you have for us radiates through the walls

                              transforming ill will into compassion and peace.

                              Allow my family to start each day with a optimistic outlook and

                              joy in their hearts, And may they carry that energy with them

                              throughout their day.  Blessed be.

13 Friday the 13th

Friday the 13th is believed to be a day of bad luck. The fear of Friday the 13th is called friggatriskaidekaphobia - Frigg is the Norse Goddess whom Friday is named after and "triskaidekaphobia" means the fear of "13". It's also known as paraskevidekatriaphobia, partly from the Greek word Friday. It is a real fear - some people who have this disorder are even too afraid to say the words “Friday the 13th”. Others avoid flying on a plane, going to work, or even getting out of bed. According to the Stress Management Center and Phobia Institute in Asheville, North Carolina, millions of Americans are afraid of Friday the 13th. Symptoms of this fear range from mild anxiety and a nagging sense of doom to full-blown panic attacks.

15 Heimdall's Day

In Norse mythology, Heimdall is a God who possesses the resounding horn Gjallarhorn, owns the golden-maned horse Gulltoppr, has gold teeth and is the son of Nine Mothers and Odin. He is attested as possessing foreknowledge, keen eyesight and hearing, is described as 'the whitest of the Gods' (white as a bright light), and keeps watch for the onset of Ragnarok while drinking fine mead in his dwelling Himinbjorg, located where the burning rainbow bridge Bifrost meets Asgard to Midgard. 

Heimdall is often associated with the ram.  His senses are so acute that he can hear the grass grow miles away and he can see to the end of the world.  He required less sleep than a bird, could see 100 leagues, and could hear wool growing on sheep.  He watches and listens, holding at the ready Gjallarhorn, which he sounds when intruders are approaching. 

                              Heimdall catch me when I fall,

                              You're my Wind-Shelter broad and tall,

                              Teacher of magics, true, and might,

                              Heimdall lead me in what's right.

15 Susan B Anthony Day

Celebrated on February 15, Susan B Anthony Day marks the birthday of one of the United States' most prominent female civil rights leaders. It is a legal observance in some states. In 1920, the "Anthony Amendment" was made to the U.S. constitution, which gave women the right to vote. She was the first American woman to have her likeness on a coin in the U.S.

Anthony described herself as a Quaker. She joined the Congregational Friends, an organization that was created by Quakers in western New York after the 1848 split among Quakers there. This group soon ceased to operate as a religious body, however, and changed its name to the Friends of Human Progress, organizing annual meetings in support of social reform that welcomed everyone, including "Christians, Jews, Mahammedans, and Pagans". Anthony served as secretary of this group.

16 Presidents Day

Washington's Birthday, also known as Presidents' Day, is a federal holiday held on the third Monday of February.  The day honors presidents of the United States, including George Washington, the USA's first president. In the weeks or days leading up to the holiday, schools often organize events and lessons for students about the presidents of the United States and George Washington in particular. It is a popular day for stores to start their sales.

George Washington (1732 – 1799) was the dominant military and political leader of the new United States of America. Washington was an outspoken leader in calling for religious liberty and tolerance, and used his prestige as general and president to promote good will among Protestants, Catholics, and Jews.  Washington rarely discussed or wrote about his personal religious and philosophical opinions in any great detail, yet he frequently displayed a humble and gracious respect towards God in his personal letters and public speeches.

18 New Moon m

In early societies, the reappearance of the moon was often a cause for celebration - after all, it meant that the dark had passed, and the full moon was on its way back.

                              Welcome back, Moon!

                              We're glad to see you again.

                              Another cycle has passed

                              another month gone by

                              and our lives have moved forward.

19 Chinese New Year

Many people in countries such as the United States celebrate Chinese New Year, also known as the Spring Festival or the Lunar New Year. It marks the first day of the New Year in the Chinese calendar. Many people in countries such as the United States celebrate Chinese New Year, also known as the Spring Festival or the Lunar New Year. It marks the first day of the New Year in the Chinese calendar.

goat41759216.jpgChinese New Year has various symbols and traditions. For example, flowers are an important part of New Year decorations. Writings that refer to good luck are often seen in homes and business environments. They are usually written by brush on a diamond-shaped piece of red paper. Tangerines and oranges are also displayed in many homes and stores as a sign of luck and wealth.

Chinese New Year 2015 will begin the Year of the Goat. Decorations will reflect this and Goat sign people will take special care about what they do. People born in the year of the goat are mild mannered, pessimistic, shy, and sympathetic. Though they love to be in groups, they do not want to be the center of attention. They are reserved and quiet, most likely because they like spending much time in their thoughts.

25 Wax Moon G

The Moon affects the tides of the oceans, but because we are mostly liquid ourselves, these phases also affect us.  Use the waxing Moon for building endurance and strength.

                              Ancient wise one, wayfarer of the night.

                              Take all that has to end, all that

                              must disappear and die with you,

                              into the darkness.  I welcome your

                              peace, I welcome the stillness.

                              As you disappear into the dawn, so

                              I choose to go within.

                              Blessed be.

27 Day of the Elders

sages17807365.jpgThe word Crone, Sage, Old Person, Elder or Senior should be a word of power but aging isn't always easy; especially when the media constantly shouts in our ears that youth equals beauty.  'Old' is something we should avoid at all costs - marketers, the media, and society seem to tell us - and if we don't ... well, maybe it's time to just step aside.  To be called a crone was an insult.  The very word implied a wrinkled, hunchbacked old woman, unwanted and unloved.  Women who had reached an advanced age were dismissed as useless hags, and there was nothing to celebrate about it at all.  Fortunately, times are changing, and more and more people are welcoming this aspect of their life.

Embrace your age, engage with life, take control of your future, and live.  Care for your body, exercise your mind, be a part of the world, stay connected with people who are supportive, and you'll discover a secret that many people over 50 who are doing these things already know: "If you feel good, you look good.  And if you feel and look good, age will be the furthest thing from your mind."

                              Hail, Old One,

                              Crone and Wise Man,

                              Silver of hair

                              And adamant of spirit,

                              Aged like fine wine

                              Through years of experience;

                              You who watch the young ones grow

                              And remember their path

                              And tell them the pitfalls ahead,

                              You who have made a friend

                              Of changing Time,

                              You whom Saturn has blessed

                              With a double circle,

                              You who keep the mysteries

                              And the secret knowledge,

                              You who mentor and teach,

                              Show us how to walk gracefully

                              Into the sunset of life.

moon7 5565.jpg

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