August 14, 2019

 Healing Scars, Reminders from Spirit

When we rush, when we forget the time needed to sink deep and stay rooted in Connection, the Spirits demand blood for our carelessness and (often unintended) disrespect. A lesson wrought through pain and blood offerings that leaves scars is very effective, I must admit.

I have found this to be true many a time, too many times in fact to call it coincidence-- not that I believe in coincidence anyway. When your mind strays, when your adrenaline spikes as you rush to finish what you can and to take just a bit more before you need to go to whatever societal demand is calling you to hurry, when you stop singing your harvest songs and whispering your prayers-- or, if your initial offerings were not enough for what you wished to take, then the knife cuts swiftly and cuts deeply, and blood runs quick and red dropping onto leaf and dirt of the Earth which devours it hungrily. 

It always happens in a way that I can only attribute to being Spirit-influenced...

January 28, 2018

I wanted to break my unintentional hiatus from writing blog posts with a post cliff-noting a conversation I had the other day with my -- also magically-inclined, and rather adept at Spiritworking -- husband. We had a conversation about spirits, offerings, and magical safety (notes I probably should have taken for our ever in-progress, will be completed eventually class, on Magical Protection). And though you may not think this applies to you-- you may not 'actively' work with spirits, you may not do spellwork or witchcraft to your way of thinking-- but, if you ever leave an offering to a plant when you harvest from it, or you light candles and pray to a higher power, anything of that nature-- you are in one form or another working with the Spirit Realm and the denizens found therein. 

This conversation was spurred by my thoughts on a practice I see many, many people-- who might consider themselves spiritual or not-- such as and particularly herbalists and foragers but also others (...

April 14, 2017

 Deep in my bones, in the blood of my veins, swirls the blood of a hundred thousand ancestors who came before. From here in this land, from across the great sea to the east. Ancestral memories of Turtle Island, the Northlands of Europe and the Islands, the Continent, Eurasia, and Western Africa pool in the recesses of my mind. And among the blood of those human ancestors, runs the tiniest veins of those nonhuman. Other. Beast and Faery, both. Something I had suspected, known really, buried in my bones, long, long before the Others told me. Before Brighid and the Morrigan, before Grandmother Bear and other Spirits told me. I knew. I knew a longing deep within me, I knew a shape I ached to take, I knew a sea I yearned to swim, I knew a cave I yearned to claim. It is a strange melancholy, to be seal-kin without a sealskin to find, never being able to return to the Sea. It is a strange heartache to feel the salmon writhing in your paws and the warm blood in your mouth, life stirring within...

April 7, 2017

It's that time of year. Spring is upon us here in the Northern Hemisphere. For some it has long since arrived, for others it is just now unfurling from its sleep within the dark earth. Buds have opened, pollen is dispersing, green things have begun to spring up from the still-cool earth. This time of year is also when most foragers, or those new to foraging, begin their year of forays out into the wildwood in search of those lymph-moving, chi-stimulating, nourishing spring green edibles. 

I should say upfront that I am not a master forager, though I am learning and exploring. Always be sure that you are cross-referencing your finds from multiple field guides and state or government botany websites (NOT blogs, including this one!) and are absolutely sure of what you have found before eating or ingesting any herb or wild plant that you have come across. Many have deadly poisonous look-alikes! Also be wary of plants that are growing too close to roads (my bare minimum distance is 100 yards...

February 14, 2017

There's nothing quite like making tea. 

It is a practice of mindfulness, a moment separate from the rest of time. It is a reminder to slow down, to come back into this moment, to be present with the act of boiling water, of adding the herbs to the pot, then the water. Waiting for the tea to steep. Pouring it into the carefully selected cup, adding your sweetener of choice. Stirring dripping honey or crystalline grains till melted. Getting comfortable by the window in your favorite chair, breathing in deeply the aromatic steam before slowly sipping, savoring each drop. 

Lately my tea of choice has been a blend of Tulsi/Holy Basil and Nettle leaves. Nettle has always been a favorite of mine, I use it in everything when I cook and in almost all of my tea blends and infusions. Tulsi I have had before as a tea, but now I am bonding with it as an herbal ally to help me in this time of great duress. Stirred into each cupful is a pinch of an herbal-sugar blend, lovingly and magically c...

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© 2017 by Femme de la Foret // Aileen Peterson

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