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Places to go and things to do

The Museum of Witchcraft

The Museum of Witchcraft was founded in 1951 in Castletown on the Isle of Man, by a gentleman by the name of Cecil Williamson. Cecil purchased the Witches Mill in Castletown in 1948, and with the help of his friend Gerald Gardener proceeded to refurbish the Mill in a way appropriate to house and display his vast collection of Witchcraft related artifacts.

When the Museum was finally open under the name of "Folklore" Museum (because of the misconceptions of the general public at the time), Gerald became some-what of a resident Witch and sold copies of his book 'High Magic's Aid' in the Museum. In 1960 the Museum moved from the Isle of Man to Boscastle in Cornwall where is has made it's home ever since.

In 1996 the Museum was purchased by Mr. Graham King who still owns and runs the Museum today.

Over the Sixty years that the Museum has been in existence it has steadily grown and is now the world's largest collection of Witchcraft related artifacts.

Opening times are from Spring Equinox (Easter) until Samhain (Halloween), Seven days a week: Monday to Saturday 10:30 - 5:30 or later, Sundays 12:00 - 5:30 or later

Admission: Adults £2.00

Elders £1.00

Children £1.00

Aslan

Aslan is a focus for the exchange of information about ancient sacred sites and their care, between public, local groups and national bodies in Britain.

To find out more information about Aslans activities in your area contact:

The Secretary, ASLaN, PO BOX 333, Banbury, Oxfordshire, OX16 8XA

www.symbolstone.org/archeology/aslan/

Earth Mysteries

Padstow Hobby 'Oss'

Padstow's Hobby 'Oss' takes place every year on the 1st of May. It's origins stem from the Ancient Pagan fertility festival of Beltane. The Hobby 'Oss' itself is made up of a hoop covered with black material with a mask in the middle (originally a horse's skull). The Hobby 'Oss' was originally covered with tar, and it was believed that any young women who's clothes were marked by the 'Oss' during it's procession through the streets of Padstow, would be pregnant before the end of the year. Hobby 'Oss' day also features a Maypole by which Pagans meet at 12:00 to chat and toast each others health with mead. Padstow shares this festival with the not as famous Minehead Hobby 'Oss' which is held on the same date and is similar though not exactly the same as Padstow's Hobby 'Oss' day.

Padstow Hobby 'Oss'

THE GROVE OF THE ANTLER-CROWNED GODDESS - WELCOME

Through my work as a Fellowship of Isis priestess I discovered the Druid Clan of Dana and set up the Grove of the Antler Crowned Goddess as part of my personal spiritual journey.

For me Druidry is about finding the wilderness and wildness within, a releasing of creativity, working with passion and abandon, following your intuition rather than a book. It is a pagan path which honours the ancestors, the spirit of the land, and the spirits all around us as well as the gods. It is also a mystery tradition. My approach to rituals is very individual and influenced by my work with the FOI, a wiccan background and my relationship with the land and it’s spirits.

Although I created the Grove for myself I wanted to give others the opportunity to work there too. Currently there is no group celebrating festivals or working rites at the Grove itself. However, it has evolved into a grove by mail/E-mail.

Although there is a physical grove it is based in my back garden which is a very small space. And as a result the grove itself is built in miniature and it is not practical to hold rituals there. The grove does have a huge spiritual presence on the astral plane, and you do not have to be geographically close to it in order to work there. Seekers from around the world can come together on the astral plane. The Grove membership is small at present but I hope it will grow in time.

If you seek it the grove can help with training or guidance on your spiritual path, there is a Druid correspondence course available. Or if you prefer you can work alone with the tree spirits and the Gods. As the numbers grow we can arrange to celebrate the festivals and/or the Celtic tree months by attunement.

The following ritual is a guided introduction to the Grove. It can be used as a ritual with a visualisation at the centre or can be done completely as a pathworking depending on how you feel. I want everyone who works with the Grove to bring something to it, but also to allow the Grove to give them something back, spiritually. The colours for the Grove are black, deep red and dark green. Don’t worry about what robes you wear – whatever seems suitable.

For those of you not familiar with FOI ritual it is an intense rite on the inner spiritual plane, it asks you to seek inner vision. The path of the rite is intended to send you on an inner journey to seek the spiritual reality of the Grove so that you can access it more easily in the future. I would love to hear your accounts of the ritual afterwards, any flashes of inspiration or visions. Although you may wish to let it settle for a few days before you can put it into words.

I live in Exeter, Devon, and the countryside is never far away – neither is the call of the sea. You may wish to contact me before the ritual to find out what seasonal changes have occurred within the Grove itself to give you a feel for things.

Once you have performed this ritual you may visit the Grove whenever you wish. Either in the form of brief visualisations or larger rituals. You may wish to visit at the time of seasonal festivals or to mark the beginning of the Celtic Tree Months. You may find it a good place to meet with deities or others you wish to communicate with. Do not be afraid to bring something of yourself to the Grove.

It is up to you how you organise the ritual. I usually place three candles on an altar placed at North. Along with objects I feel are sacred and an item to symbolise each of the elements which is presented at the quarters as I invoke each of the Guardian Goddesses. Do not be afraid to improvise, or to follow intuition. But if you need help or guidance don’t be shy – just ask.

Bright Blessings

Sowelu

THE RITE

IN THE EAST I INVOKE THE GODDESS ARIANRHOD, SWEET FLOWER MAIDEN, QUEEN OF BEAUTY. LADY OF THE SPIRAL CASTLE, OF THE SILVER WHEEL TO BE PRESENT HERE. MAY YOUR LIGHT AND KNOWLEDGE SHINE FORTH ON THIS GROVE THAT WE MAY BRING THESE VIRTUES ONTO OUR OWN PATH, AND BENEFIT THOSE AROUND US. THIS INCENSE IS OFFERED TO THE GODDESS ARIANRHOD

IN THE SOUTH I INVOKE THE GODDESS BRIDE, LADY OF THE FIRE, SMITHCRAFT AND POETIC INSPIRATION. SHE WHO GUARDS THE SERPENT THAT IS THE SUN. GRANT TO THIS GROVE THE JOY OF SONG AND THE POWER OF HEALING THAT WE MAY SEND THIS OUT TO ALL THE EARTH. THIS ETERNAL FLAME IS OFFERED TO BRIDE.

IN THE WEST I INVOKE THE GODDESS COVENTINA. SHE OF THE RIVERS AND THE SEAS, SHE WHO IS THE CHALICE OVER-SPILLING WITH LIFE. SHE OF THE WELL THAT FEEDS THE HEARTS AND MINDS OF ALL CREATURES. COVENTINA IN WHOSE DEPTHS THE GREATEST TREASURES LIE. AID US IN OUR WORK AND GRANT THROUGH THIS BLESSED WATER TRUE VISION.

IN THE NORTH I INVOKE THE GODDESS CERRIDWEN, DARK LADY, RULER OF THE NIGHT AND DEATH. IT IS THROUGH YOU THAT WE COME TO KNOW THESE MYSTERIES AND ENCOUNTER THE DARKNESS WITHIN AND WITHOUT. YOUR HIDDEN FACE CONFRONTS OUR FEARS AND DRAWS US INTO CONTEMPLATION OF THE UNKNOWN. I WOULD ASK FOR YOUR PROTECTION AND THAT YOU BE OUR GUIDE AS WE JOURNEY INWARD. THIS STONE IS OFFERED TO CERRIDWEN.

I SEEK THE GROVEOF THE ANTLER-CROWNED GODDESS ON THE INNER REALMS. I STAND AT THE GATEWAY TO THE LABYRINTH WHERE THE MORRIGAN WAITS. I AM WILLING TO FACE HER.

You are standing before a gateway. The Morrigan stands there, Her face veiled. Listen to Her words.

“NOW IS THE TIME TO PASS THROUGH THE MAGICAL DOLMEN, GATEWAY TO THE WORLD OF THE SIDHE...

When she has finished speaking to you she will place her hand on your forehead to open your inner eye, and then push you through the gateway to the beginning of the Labyrinth.

You hear Dana speak from the Labyrinth’s centre.

“NOW YOU ARE IN DANA’S LABYRINTH ARE YOU WILLING TO TREAD THE PATH WITH A CALM MIND AND HEART?”

As you walk towards Her listen to Her words, Her voice will lead you to the centre.

“WALK THE SPIRAL OF MAGIC TO ME...

When you reach Her, Dana will place Her hand on your heart centre to send energy to you, and then she will speak.

“YOU ARE AT THE HEART OF THE LABYRINTH ARE YOU WILLING TO FACE BRIDE AT THE WELL?”

As you turn you see Bride waiting for you at the well.

“WELCOME ALL TO THE HEART’S GOAL THE WELLHEAD OF LOVE AND INSPIRATION...

When She has finished speaking Bride will anoint your forehead with water from the well. Now you are ready to approach the Grove.

YOU HAVE TRAVELLED IN A DEEP SPIRAL TO THE INNER PLANES, HAVE WALKED THE WORLD TREE TO ARRIVE AT THE GROVE IN ITS SPIRITUAL FORM. AS THE BREATH OF THE GODDESS AWAKENS THE TREES IN THE OUTER WORLD SO YOUR MAGIC AWAKENS THE GROVE ON THE INNER PLANE.

THE ENTRANCE IS GUARDED BY TWO POWERFUL YEW TREES AND A SHIMMERING DRAGON. SPEAK THE PASSWORDS ‘PEACE AND LOVE’ AND THEY WILL LET YOU PASS.

YOU MOVE INTO A HUGE CIRCLE OF TREES, THE CENTRE COVERED WITH GRASS. EVERY MAGICAL TREE IS REPRESENTED HERE – OAK, ASH, BIRCH, WILLOW TO NAME BUT A FEW. BEYOND AND TO EITHER SIDE OF THE TREES IS WILD WOODLAND FULL OF MAGICAL PLANTS AND ANIMALS, THE BOUNDS GUARDED BY WOLVES. AT NORTH IS A STONE ALTAR IN FRONT OF THE APRICOT TREE (WITH ITS GENTLE PINKY WHITE BLOSSOMS IN SPRING). IF YOU WALK THROUGH THE TREES HERE YOU WILL FIND A SECRET HERB GARDEN AND A GENTLE STREAM RUNNING INTO STILL POOLS.

TAKE YOUR TIME TO EXPLORE, PERHAPS YOU HEAR THE WORDS OF THE ANTLER-CROWNED GODDESS WHISPERING IN THE LEAVES – LISTEN TO ME FOR I AM DEATH’S DARK GLORY, I AM THE WHISPER IN THE LEAVES, I AM THE SPIRIT OF THE FOREST – I AM TRULY FREE.

When you are ready to leave return back gently to your place of magical working. You may wish to offer a few words of thanks to Morrigan, Dana and Bride as the candles on the altar are extinguished.

I NOW SEND FORTH RAYS OF BLESSING AND HEALING TO ALL BEINGS AND ALL EXISTENCES

I GIVE THANKS TO THE GUARDIANS OF THE EAST AND TO THE GODDESS ARIANRHOD FOR THAT WHICH SHE HAS GRANTED TO US

I GIVE THANKS TO THE GUARDIANS OF THE SOUTH AND TO THE GODDESS BRIDE FOR THE GIFTS SHE HAS GRANTED US.

I GIVE THANKS TO THE GUARDIANS OF THE WEST AND TO THE GODDESS COVENTINA FOR THE LOVE SHE HAS GIVEN US

I GIVE THANKS TO THE GUARDIANS OF THE NORTH AND TO THE GODDESS CERRIDWEN FOR THE PROTECTION AND GUIDANCE SHE HAS GIVEN US

I GIVE THANKS TO THE DIVINE UNIVERSE FOR THE BLESSING OF THE STARS

 

 

 

CURRENT MOON