Current News

I am currently in the process of migrating the content shared here to a series of new websites hosted at shirleytwofeathers.com.

As you explore this site, you may find links to a "page not found" instead of something cool and magickal. For this I apologize. I am very working hard behind the scenes to restore those pages along with a link to their homes on my new website where they can be viewed in full.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Iroquois Good Luck Spell

The Iroquois believe our souls communicate to us through our dreams. This spell is best done with like-minded friends. Gather any objects that appear in your dreams from January 1st to January 10th....

I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website The Book Of Shadows, hosted at shirleytwofeathers.com, and can be found in its entirety here: Iroquois Good Luck Spell


Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Seeing Witches

The pith of the Elder branches when cut in round flat shapes and dipped in oil, lighted and then put to float in a glass of water; its light on Christmas Eve is thought to reveal all the witches and sorcerers in the neighborhood.

~Richard Folkard, 1884

Friday, December 12, 2008

It is not easy to be a Witch

It is not easy to be a Witch, a bender, a shaper, one of the Wise; nor is it safe, comfortable, "laid back", mellow, uplifting, or a guarantee of peace of mind. It requires openness, vulnerability, courage, and work. It gives no answers, only tasks to be done, and questions to consider.... It functions in those deeper ways of knowing which our culture has denied, and for which we hunger.

~Starhawk

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Magic is

Magic is believing in yourself,
if you can do that,
you can make anything happen."

~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Turkey - Symbolic Meanings

Here is a basic listing of what Turkeys mean in a "magical" sense.

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  • Pride
  • Abundance
  • Generosity
  • Awareness
  • Virility
  • Fertility
  • Sacrifice

Turkeys have been a symbol of thanksgiving and abundance long before the Pilgrim’s ”first meal” in 1621 with the Native Americans.

Native American Indians view the turkey as a both a symbol of abundance and fertility. The turkey was the guest of honor (sacrificial, that is) in various fertility and gratitude ceremonies. The Creek tribes still practice the turkey dance during its annual fire festivals. The feathers of turkeys are also used in rituals.

The turkey was thought to be sacred to ancient Mexican cultures. The Aztecs, Mayans and Toltecs viewed the turkey as a “jeweled bird” and also referred to it as the “Great Xolotl.” Male turkeys were honored for it’s beauty and essence of cocky pride.

Turkeys (like the peacock) give clear signs of agitation prior to poor weather conditions This is often seen by primitive cultures as a symbol of foretelling.

Turkeys are at their peak of power in the autumn months. As fall season animals, turkeys are also symbolic of:

  • harvest
  • new beginnings
  • cycles
  • preparation

The turkey is also a symbol for male virility and pride. This isn’t surprising when we observe male turkeys in the wild. They are quite noble looking as the strut & fan their impressive plumage for all to see.

When the turkey visits us it is a sign that we must be mindful of the blessings bestowed upon us each day. Further, it is a message to express our strength and brilliance - it’s time to show our own plumage and reveal true selves.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Granny's Shooshi Dinner

Ingredients:

  • 3 Lbs rabbit meat, cut into pieces
  • 2 fresh bay leaves
  • 3 stems thyme
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 3 onions, minced
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • A few black peppercorns, crushed
  • Salt...
I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, Gypsy Magick and Lore (hosted at shirleytwofeathers.com) and can be found in its entirety here: Granny's Shooshi Dinner

Thursday, November 13, 2008

If a man...

If a man be anointed with the juice of the herb Rue, the poison of wolf's bane, mushrooms, or todestooles, the biting of serpents, stinging of scorpions, spiders, bees, hornets and wasps will not hurt him.

~John Gerard, The Herball, 1597

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

The Snow Moon


November’s Full Moon beckons us to look deep within. With the Sun in Scorpio, the Snow Moon is a potent time to look beyond the obvious. This is an excellent time for dreamwork and lends its energies easily to meditation and divinatory efforts as well as projects that require endings....

I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been divided up and moved to my new websites, The Pagan Calendar and Book of Shadows (hosted at shirleytwofeathers.com) and can be found here: Snow Moon and Snow Moon Manifestation Spell

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Inviting in your Ancestors

For this spell, gather at your altar or sacred space some black cloth, a black candle, a bowl of water, a feather, a citrine, amethyst or lapis lazuli crystal, and photos and mementos from your loved ones who have passed beyond....

I'm so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to the Book of Shadows hosted at shirleytwofeathers.com and can be found in it's entirety here: Inviting Your Ancestors In


Sunday, October 26, 2008

Hungry Ghosts

Samhain (aka Halloween) is a magical time of the year. It has Celtic roots. It marks the beginning of the "dark" part of the year. It's also the moment when the "veils" between the realms of the living and dead are "thinned" making communication easier.

You can actually invoke blessings from "hungry" ghosts ...

So sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to Book of Shadows hosted at shirleytwofeathers.com and can be found in it's entirety here: Hungry Ghosts

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Horse Whispering

Horse whispering is shrouded in mystery. It is an inexplicable method employed by the Romanies to tame wild and temperamental horses.

Tradition says the secret to horse whispering was granted as a deathbed legacy from a horse charmer to his eldest son. The Romanies say that one who has received the gift of horse whispering cannot die peacefully until he or she has passed on the talent....

... I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, Gypsy Magick and Lore, and can be found in its entirety here: Horse Whispering

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Cat Lore

Cats have been revered as magical since the time of the ancient Egyptians. Here is some interesting lore:

  • A cat washing itself is believed to be a forecast of rain.
  • To see it wash behind its ears is a sign that a visitor will call....
... I am so sorry to do this to you but this post has been moved to my new website, Divination, and can be found in its entirety here: Ailuromancy - What is it?

Dog Healing


Place your dog in a comfortable position or let it find its own spot in which to lie down.

Sit beside your dog and pray for a circle of gold light to be placed around you both for protection, and for a circle of blue light to be placed around you and your dog for healing. Then say the Lord's Prayer. (The Gypsy version can be found here.)
  1. Place your hands palms down over your pet.
  2. Visualize yellow light, then blue, green, indigo, and violet rays permeating your hands and then passing into your pet's body.
  3. End by asking for a cloak of spiritual protection to be placed around your pet to protect and keep it from harm.
This can be repeated several times a day.

From: The Good Spell Book

To Heal a Cat Wound

To heal a cat after it's been in a fight, the Romanies recommend that you first light a blue candle. Place your cat on your lap or let the cat find its own comfortable place to lie. Soothe it with loving strokes until it purrs or appears relaxed and comfortable enough to stay put for five or ten minutes.

Close your eyes and pray for a spirit vet to work through your hands. After a few minutes you should feel heat emanating from your palms. You may then feel your hands being guided to various parts of your cat's body. Direct them to where they are drawn.

Imagine the colors of the rainbow - red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple - streaming into the cat.

Finish by thanking the spirit vet who used your hands to channel healing energy. Then say, Kitten scrap scrabble scrap, before giving your cat a kiss to seal the spell.


source: The Good Spell Book
by Gillian Kemp

On Healing Your Pets

The Romanies strongly believe in the power of hands on healing for dogs, horses, and smaller pets such as cats, rabbits, guinea pigs, hamsters, mice and birds.

The remedies found here at Gypsy Magic are not an alternative to visiting a vet. But they may be used in conjunction with veterinary treatment, before or after surgery, or simply if your pet appears to be "under the weather."

Friday, October 10, 2008

Imagination

Imagination...is like the soul's eye; therein forms are outlined and preserved; thereby we behold the reflections of the invisible world; it is the glass of visions and the apparatus of magical life.

~Eliphas Levi Zahed, Dogma et Ritual de la Haute Magie, 1855

Sunday, June 15, 2008

The Romany Rye

gypsy family fun

"He knows no bosses, no gaffers. He could make a living out of the dirt of a man's foot. He could make money out of an old rope!"

~Jimmy Higgins

Monday, April 28, 2008

Practical and Magical Uses for Dandelions

Traditionally, dandelions have often appeared in pagan rituals. The buttery blossoms and bright green leaves accent altars for spring and summer celebrations, especially the Vernal Equinox, Beltane, and Litha. They can be woven into garlands, wreaths, and ropes to be worn or draped across altars. Towards autumn, pluck the silvery orbs to adorn your altar for Lammas, Mabon, or Samhain.



Alternatively, you could design your own rituals to celebrate dandelions, or to take advantage of their many properties. Here is a listing of posts about Dandelions and how to use them.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Medicinal Teas with Dandelion Root

Here are three recipes for medicinal teas using Dandelion Root:

  1. Infuse 1 OZ. of Dandelion in a pint of boiling water for 10 minutes; decant, sweeten with honey, and drink several glasses in the course of the day....

 I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, Folk Medicine Remedies and Cures, hosted at shirleytwofeathers.com, and can be found in its entirety here: Medicinal Teas with Dandelion Root


Sunday, April 20, 2008

Bright Magic


Welcome to my world,
where magic dances lightly
and winds of luck
will fill your sails
if you just know
just where to go
and what to do...


I am so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website, Widdershins, hosted at shirleytwofeathers.com, and can be found in its entirety here: Bright Magic

Thursday, April 03, 2008

The Potteries, 1864

Here is a wonderful bit of lore on the historical Gypsy from Word-Book of the Romany or, English Gypsy Language by George Borrow:

The second great Gypsyry is on the Middlesex side of the river, and is distant about three miles, as the crow flies, from that of Wandsworth. Strange as it may seem, it is not far distant from the most fashionable part of London; from the beautiful squares, noble streets, and thousand palaces of Tyburnia, a region which, though only a small part of the enormous metropolis, can show more beautiful edifices, wealth, elegance, and luxury, than all foreign capitals put together.

After passing Tyburnia, and going more than halfway down Notting Hill, you turn to the right, and proceed along a tolerably genteel street till it divides into two, one of which looks more like a lane than a street, and which is on the left hand, and bears the name of Pottery Lane.

Go along this lane, and you will presently find yourself amongst a number of low, uncouth-looking sheds, open at the sides, and containing an immense quantity of earthen chimney-pots, pantiles, fancy-bricks, and similar articles. This place is called the Potteries, and gives the name of Pottery Lane to the lane through which you have just passed. A dirty little road goes through it, which you must follow, and presently turning to your left, you will enter a little, filthy street, and going some way down it, you will see, on your right hand, a little, open bit of ground, chock-full of crazy, battered caravans of all colours - some yellow, some green, some red.

Gypsy Women


Dark men, wild-looking, witch-like women, and yellow-faced children are at the doors of the caravans, or wending their way through the narrow spaces left for transit between the vehicles. You have now arrived at the second grand Gypsyry of London - you are amongst the Romany Chals of the Potteries, called in Gypsy the Koromengreskoe Tan, or the place of the fellows who make pots; in which place certain Gypsies have settled, not with the view of making pots, an employment which they utterly eschew, but simply because it is convenient to them, and suits their fancy.

A goodly collection of Gypsies you will find in that little nook, crowded with caravans. Most of them are Tatchey Romany, real Gypsies, "long-established people, of the old order." Amongst them are Ratzie-mescroes, Hearnes, Herons, or duck-people; Chumo-mescroes or Bosvils; a Kaulo Camlo (a Black Lovel) or two, and a Beshaley or Stanley. It is no easy thing to find a Stanley nowadays, even in the Baulo Tem, or Hampshire, which is the proper home of the Stanleys, for the Bugnior, pimples or small-pox, has of late years made sad havoc amongst the Stanleys; but yonder tall old gentlewoman, descending the steps of a caravan, with a flaming red cloak and a large black beaver bonnet, and holding a travelling basket in her hand, is a Tatchey Beshaley, a "genuine" Stanley.

The generality, however, of "them Gyptians" are Ratzie-mescroes, Hearnes, or duck-people; and, speaking of the Hearnes, it is but right to say that he who may be called the Gypsy Father of London, old Thomas Ratzie-mescro, or Hearne, though not exactly residing here, lives close by in a caravan, in a little bit of a yard over the way, where he can breathe more freely, and be less annoyed by the brats and the young fellows than he would be in yonder crowded place.

Though the spot which it has just been attempted to describe, may be considered as the head-quarters of the London Gypsies, on the Middlesex side of the Thames, the whole neighbourhood, for a mile to the north of it, may to a certain extent be considered a Gypsy region - that is, a district where Gypsies, or gentry whose habits very much resemble those of Gypsies, may at any time be found. No metropolitan district, indeed, could be well more suited for Gypsies to take up their abode in.

It is a neighbourhood of transition; of brickfields, open spaces, poor streets inhabited by low artisans, isolated houses, sites of intended tenements, or sites of tenements which have been pulled down; it is in fact a mere chaos, where there is no order and no regularity; where there is nothing durable, or intended to be durable; though there can be little doubt that within a few years order and beauty itself will be found here, that the misery, squalidness, and meanness will have disappeared, and the whole district, up to the railroad arches which bound it on the west and north, will be covered with palaces, like those of Tyburnia, or delightful villas, like those which decorate what is called Saint John's Wood.

At present, however, it is quite the kind of place to please the Gypsies and wandering people, who find many places within its bounds where they can squat and settle, or take up their quarters for a night or two without much risk of being interfered with. Here their tents, cars, and caravans may be seen amidst ruins, half-raised walls, and on patches of unenclosed ground; here their children may, throughout the day, be seen playing about, flinging up dust and dirt, some partly naked, and others entirely so; and here, at night, the different families, men, women, and children, may be seen seated around their fires and their kettles, taking their evening meal, and every now and then indulging in shouts of merriment, as much as to say:

What care we, though we be so small?
The tent shall stand when the palace shall fall.


Which is quite true. The Gypsy tent must make way for the palace, but after a millennium or two, the Gypsy tent is pitched on the ruins of the palace.

Of the open spaces above mentioned, the most considerable is one called Latimer's Green. It lies on the north-western side of the district, and is not far from that place of old renown called the Shepherd's Bush, where in the good ancient times highwaymen used to lurk for the purpose of pouncing upon the travellers of the Oxford Road. It may contain about five or six acres, and, though nominally under the control of trustees, is in reality little more than a "no man's ground," where anybody may feed a horse, light a fire, and boil a kettle.

It is a great resort of vagrant people, less of Gypsies than those who call themselves travellers, and are denominated by the Gypsies Chorodies, and who live for the most part in miserable caravans, though there is generally a Gypsy tent or two to be seen there, belonging to some Deighton or Shaw, or perhaps Petulengro, from the Lil-engro Tan, as the Romany call Cambridgeshire.

Amidst these Chorody caravans and Gypsy tents may frequently be seen the ker-vardo, the house on wheels, of one who, whenever he takes up his quarters here, is considered the cock of the walk, the king of the place. He is a little under forty years of age, and somewhat under five feet ten inches in height. His face is wonderfully like that of a mastiff of the largest size, particularly in its jowls; his neck is short and very thick, and must be nearly as strong as that of a bull; his chest is so broad that one does not like to say how broad it is; and the voice which every now and then proceeds from it has much the sound of that of the mighty dog just mentioned; his arms are long and exceedingly muscular, and his fists huge and bony. He wears a low-crowned, broad-brimmed hat, a coarse blue coat with short skirts, leggings, and high-lows. Such is the kral o' the tan, the rex loci, the cock of the green. But what is he besides? Is he Gypsy, Chorody, or Hindity mush? I say, you had better not call him by any one of those names, for if you did he would perhaps hit you, and then, oh dear!

That is Mr. G. A., a travelling horse-dealer, who lives in a caravan, and finds it frequently convenient to take up his abode for weeks together on Latimer's Green. He is a thorough-bred Englishman, though he is married to a daughter of one of the old, sacred Gypsy families, a certain Lurina Ratziemescri, duck or heron female, who is a very handsome woman, and who has two brothers, dark, stealthy-looking young fellows, who serve with almost slavish obedience their sister's lord and husband, listening uncomplainingly to his abuse of Gypsies, whom, though he lives amongst them and is married to one by whom he has several children, he holds in supreme contempt, never speaking of them but as a lying, thievish, cowardly set, any three of whom he could beat with one hand; as perhaps he could, for he is a desperate pugilist, and has three times fought in "the ring" with good men, whom, though not a scientific fighter, he beat with ease by dint of terrible blows, causing them to roar out.

He is very well to do in the world; his caravan, a rather stately affair, is splendidly furnished within; and it is a pleasure to see his wife, at Hampton Court races, dressed in Gypsy fashion, decked with real gems and jewels and rich gold chains, and waited upon by her dark brothers dressed like dandy pages. How is all this expense supported? Why, by horsedealing. Mr. G. is, then, up to all kinds of horsedealers' tricks, no doubt. Aye, aye, he is up to them, but he doesn't practise them. He says it's of no use, and that honesty is the best policy, and he'll stick to it; and so he does, and finds the profit of it.

His traffic in horses, though confined entirely to small people, such as market-gardeners, travellers, show-folks, and the like, is very great; every small person who wishes to buy a horse, or to sell a horse, or to swop a horse, goes to Mr. G., and has never reason to complain, for all acknowledge that he has done the fair thing by them; though all agree that there is no overreaching him, which indeed very few people try to do, deterred by the dread of his manual prowess, of which a Gypsy once gave to the writer the following striking illustration: - "He will jal oprey to a gry that's wafodu, prawla, and coure leste tuley with the courepen of his wast." (He will go up to a vicious horse, brother, and knock him down with a blow of his fist.)

The arches of the railroad which bounds this region on the west and north serve as a resort for Gypsies, who erect within them their tents, which are thus sheltered in summer from the scorching rays of the sun, and in winter from the drenching rain. In what close proximity we sometimes find emblems of what is most rude and simple, and what is most artificial and ingenious! For example, below the arch is the Gypsy donkey-cart, whilst above it is thundering the chariot of fire which can run across a county in half an hour.

The principal frequenters of these arches are Bosvils and Lees; the former are chiefly tinkers, and the latter esconyemengres, or skewer-makers. The reason for this difference is that the Bosvils are chiefly immigrants from the country, where there is not much demand for skewers, whereas the Lees are natives of the metropolis or the neighbourhood, where the demand for skewers has from time immemorial been enormously great. It was in the shelter of one of these arches that the celebrated Ryley Bosvil, the Gypsy king of Yorkshire, breathed his last a few years ago.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

The Legend of Nu Kwa


This story comes from China. It begins with a giant egg. The egg was filled with chaos; in fact, the egg was so huge that it was filled with absolutely everything. Darkness and light were mixed together inside the egg and everything was in so much of a muddle that nothing was anything at all. Sleeping in the middle of all this was a giant - Pan Gu.

Pan Gu slept for thousands of years, but eventually he woke up and stretched himself, as he did, he broke the egg. The darkness and light separated from each other and poured out. Part of the egg drifted downwards and became the earth and part floated upwards and became the sky. The world had begun....

I'm so sorry to do this to you, but this post has been moved to my new website Widdershins (hosted at shirleytwofeathers.com) and can be found in it's entirety here: The Legend of Nu Kwa


Thursday, January 17, 2008

Banishing Spell

The idea is to relax in your personal meditational spot - you know where it's nice, cozy, silent and you're sure not to be disturbed for at least half an hour, and build up some Zee Energy. Burn some frankincense or copal incense or whatever works for you.

When you think you've reached a highly charged, powerful state envision a cone of power going counter-clockwise (for banishing) like a cyclone above your house, slowly bring the cone down into your house and envision all the little nasty energies being taken up into the cyclone squealing and kicking and being enveloped by the giant cone.


Drive the cone down below your house and deep into the earth, using the earth's magnetic field to rise through the cone and clear out all the little nasty creatures and energies. Once you are sure nothing is clinging, when you feel that the earth energy has cleared it, take the cone back up into your house and go through the process again, a little bit stronger and more determined this time, so as any smart little things can be washed out in the "rinse cycle".

Again, plunge the cone deep into the earth and clear it again. When it has cleared, allow the cone rise out of your house, high into the sky, and disperse into the sunshine.

Relax and feel the positive energy and the lack of negativity in your house. Focus now on positive thoughts and the things that you love. All is well.

Spell by Madame Fortuna

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