The Pagans celebrate a number of different festivals throughout the year, but none have quite the cultural history that Yule does.
Traditional Celtic, Nordic and European cultures structured their lives around an agricultural calendar which modern pagans call The Wheel of the Year. It marks eight distinct seasonal celebrations; four fire festivals, two equinoxes and two solstices. The one we’re going to explore in this article is the Winter Solstice, which occurs around the 21st of December in the Northern Hemisphere and June 22nd in the South.
In the Scandinavian and Germanic countries, Christmas is still called Jule (pronounced Yule) and indeed, a lot of what we know to be traditions of Christmas are far more pagan in their origins than Christian. After all, the church had to try and sell a new mainstream religion to a society which had ingrained generational practices they would not easily forego.
The actual time of the birth of Jesus (that a historical person existed is actually supported by documentation, whether he was the Christ incarnate is open to speculation) is unknown but a lot of theologians estimate it was probably in March, so why was it amalgamated with the winter solstice?
That has a lot to do with the main theme of the festival; The Return of the Sun.
A lot of people would expect that a celebration marking the shortest day and longest night of the year would be about death, however it is the exact opposite. The solstice marks a turning point from the darkest days of the year, to a time when the sun starts to come back and warm the earth once more.
This fits into a lot of myths similar to the Christ story, such as the legend of King Arthur. A lot of people had faith that when things were at their darkest, a leader would be born who carries an eternal light which can guide people out of it. At the winter solstice pagans believe that a Child of Light is released from the darkness of a cave and he’s known as Mabon.
Mabon is also a separate celebration of the Autumn Equinox and the legend goes that the Child of Light is born at this time, but is stolen away and seconded in a dark cave. His mother grieves for him and the earth withers in response, rather like the legend of Persephone and Demeter from Greek mythology. Eventually she finds him and he is released at the time of Yule.
For an agricultural society, seasons and their timing were of vital importance and they looked to the skies for patterns they could recognise in order to keep track. As part of this, standing stones were often built in alignment with the solstices and large gatherings would be held to mark those auspicious events.
We know a lot about the celebration of winter solstice thanks to Stonehenge.
In recent years archaeologists have examined the isotopes in pig bones over 4000 years old found at various settlement sites surrounding Avebury and Stonehenge. They discovered that all the bones in question were killed at a specific time of the year, namely the middle of winter. They also discovered that those pigs had lived all their lives in various areas of the British Isles as far away as the north of Scotland. They concluded that people of the Neolithic in Britain would muster their excess livestock, take them all the way to Salisbury Plain, slaughter them and enjoy a large feast in celebration of the winter solstice.
What makes them think it was specifically held on the solstice? Because even to this day the stones perfectly mark the rising and setting suns of both the winter and summer solstices. In the winter solstice, the sun will set in direct alignment with the south-west trilithon and it will rise again directly in the middle of the south-east trilithon. The alignment is so perfect it still baffles scholars to this day as to how they did it.
The main reason why livestock were slaughtered in large numbers at this time of year was to put less pressure on feeding them from grain and hay stores. All they really needed were the good breeding stock, especially the pregnant animals, in order to replenish their numbers in the coming spring. Again, there was a lot of practical consideration for agricultural needs behind a lot of the festivals.
Asides from the livestock management side of Yule, there was a lot of symbolism in plants which have carried over into Christmas, where their meaning is a bit obscured.
Evergreen plants were venerated at this time of year because it was generally so bleak and lifeless. Coniferous plants, holly and mistletoe featured as decoration in the home as symbols of hope for the return of life to the land. Holly in particular symbolises the battle between the Oak King and the Holly King for supremacy of the wheel of the year. At the summer solstice the Holly King is triumphant and the world descends into the dark half of the year, then at the winter solstice the Oak King is victorious and virility is restored.
The Oak King is also sometimes portrayed as the Green Man and both Holly and Oak Kings can be considered split personalities of the horned god, Cernunnos.
Male fertility is a recurring theme in Yule and you may be surprised to know what kissing under the mistletoe actually means. This information will either put you off doing it, or spur you on…
For the druids, mistletoe was a plant associated with divine male fertility because it resembles… issue. That is, it hangs from the boughs of trees like god-jizz.
Being a plant which grows from above the ground after being excreted by birds and forming a parasitic attachment to a host tree, it was considered to be sent from the heavens and so retrieving it was a ceremony in and of itself. The High Druid would climb the host tree and cut down the mistletoe with a golden sickle. This represented the feminine deity (the moon goddess) harvesting the seed of the god in order to create new life. Kissing underneath the bough of a tree laden with mistletoe was believed to bring fertility to the couple and make the man more potent.
Another tradition was the Yule Log. This was the largest possible log a household could find, and outdoor fires were not a thing at this celebration, so it had to fit the family hearth whilst also lasting a full 12 days of burning.
The ritual goes that in the lead-up to Yule the log would have pride of place on the family table where it would receive sprinklings of libations (alcohol) along with wishes for the season ahead. On the evening of the solstice it would be lit from a piece saved from last year’s log and then kept burning for 12 days which ended up about the 1st of January. At that point a piece would be saved for the next year.
This ceremony was believed to bring plenty of food, good fortune and warmth to the household for the rest of the year.
Very little has changed about a lot of the traditions we now associate with Christmas, especially the feasting. Whether a pagan is marking this event in December or June, the most important thing is to gather friends and family together for a good time when the season can be at its bleakest.
Traditional foods are roast meats (especially pigs and ducks), fermented vegetables, starchy goods, preserved fruit, nuts and… booze! For a real winter warmer, try making a mulled wine or mulled cider to go with whatever feast you have planned.
What you need to know if you’re on a Twin Flame journey, especially in the separation phase.
There are a lot of websites and videos which explore the Twin Flame dynamic and I guess I’m one of them. One of the signs which comes up frequently when people are trying to research what the hell is happening to them is the phenomenon of telepathy.
Even though it’s usually listed as a sign, and it is a very powerful thing to experience, it is by no means restricted to a Twin Flame relationship. Don’t worry though, I’m not here to say that you aren’t experiencing what you’re experiencing.
The one big sign that you have encountered your twin is that you’ll be confused as hell and trying to find answers because it is both a very strong connection and very volatile one (hence the label). I’ve heard all kinds of horror stories about where it can end up if the two people in question are not working on their respective issues and a lot of psychic readers will tell you it’s just a karmic partner etc.
Honestly, it doesn’t matter whether they’re karmic, twin or soul mate; every relationship happens to teach you more about love and about yourself. There is also no real hierarchy of which one is better than the other; they can all become detrimental if you fail to recognise the lessons and respond to them.
It’s also no a given that you’re supposed to be in a long-term relationship with your twin; it might be one of the most karmic encounters you can have and pretty short-lived, but if it propels you forward in your journey towards alchemising pain into experience, then it has served it’s purpose.
In terms of telepathy, there is a very significant reason why this happens and why it isn’t necessarily a good sign as many would imagine it to be.
Yes, it is a strong connection. Does the strength of a connection determine whether it’s healthy though?
Technically, if it did, trauma bonding would be the best sign of relationship success and we would all be aiming to experience Stockholm Syndrome with every partner.
In my experience, you can have telepathy with a variety of relationships and not always for the right reasons. For example, you can have a telepathic relationship with a parent if they enmeshed with you as a child. You can also have a telepathic relationship with any partner if you’re an open enough empath.
I once dated a guy who was absolutely the worst dude for me, but I have such an intense empath gift that when I heard my phone go off with a new message a year after we broke up, I still knew it was him.
Four years after cutting contact with my mother I knew she was thinking about making contact two weeks before she actually did.
This is not a sign that these people are supposed to be in my life, this is a sign that I either have a very strong gift, or I had very enmeshed relationships. Possibly both.
In psychology terms, enmeshment is a process of abuse done by parents to children and it breaches their boundaries in very fundamental ways.
Generally speaking, enmeshment happens in one of two ways, or a combinations of the two: Parentification & Emotional Incest
These can be very confronting ideas so I’ll explain how they work.
This is a dynamic where the parent abdicates their position of parent and places it on the shoulders of their child, demanding that the child look after them instead.
Because the roles are flipped, the parent gets to behave in very volatile and childish ways while the child has to mature and take responsibility in ways which they are not yet equipped to do.
As an example, I can remember holding “meetings” with my brother about how best we should handle our unstable mother at the ages of 8 and 14 respectively. It was kind of pointless though because she had all the adult capabilities of money and power of attorney so she could totally do reckless things whenever she wanted and then later blame us and dish out abuse.
This is similar to parentification in that the child is forced into a role they’re not equipped to take on, but in this instance it is as an emotional crutch and pseudo-partner for the parent.
No actual physical relationship takes place, but all of the emotional markers are there and it’s a level of intimacy which is considered to cross a significant line between parent and child.
Usually what it looks like is a parent complaining about their partner to the child or sharing stories about their sex life. It can also be a case of walking around naked in front of the child or insisting that the parent is allowed to see them naked past an age where this is necessary.
Both of these cross barriers in the psyche of the child and leave them vulnerable to further breaches in other relationships because it blurs the line between where one person ends and the other person begins.
Of all the twin dynamics I have seen, all of them have been codependent in some way. This is understandable if you consider that a natural twin would be easily confused about where the line is that separates them from the other person. The energetic frequency is too similar, which is why that person feels like home straight away.
Because of the instant bond, a lot of twins fall into an intense relationship almost off the bat. Unlike a balanced and healthy dynamic of proceeding with caution, they’re often guilty of love-bombing which creates a chemical dependency known as love addiction.
There’s a level of dopamine rewards in your brain which is optimal in a relationship and it’s there to ensure that you shut down (to a certain extent) the logical brain so that you will procreate. Evolution has made sure that we don’t overthink it too much.
This dopamine dependency is such a rush that it makes you addicted to that person. How do I know this is true? Because if you’re reading this, you have probably felt like you were going to die without that person in your life and you will be engaging in all sorts of junkie-like behaviours such as stalking their social media, pleading with them to stay or come back, and watching copious amounts of YouTube tarot readings.
You’re a goddamn crack-ho.
But it’s ok, because you can break the addiction and potentially have a great relationship later on (but not necessarily with your TF).
One of the reasons I believe Twin Flames (TF) end up in enmeshed relationships at first (don’t forget you can totally heal past this point in the separation phase) is that the connection is already established from having shared an over-soul of origin. Rather like actual birth twins, sharing that space during your genesis creates a bond at an energetic level rather like quantum entanglement.
Unlike a lot of the theory out there (and please remember; this is ALL theory because no one actually knows anything at all except their subjective experience) I believe that this entanglement can be either reduced or even severed.
One of the reasons I think this is possible is due to the idea that empaths tend to leak energy (so to speak). They’re an open circuit which means that energy tends to flow through them and straight into other people rather than staying within their own closed system.
They’re also highly receptive of other people which is why they absorb so much emotional off-gassing in public spaces.
This ability to be a conduit is both a gift and a curse because it can be used in very powerful ways or the empath themselves can just end up used. The person in possession of the gift needs to be the one in control of it’s use and not allow others to take over.
For TF’s usually one of them is already on a spiritual journey when they encounter one another and in many cases, the other is completely asleep in comparison. The awoken twin will reconnect the other and serve as a conduit to the higher levels of consciousness, effectively activating the other. In turn, the conduit twin will feel reconnected themselves, but they aren’t actually retaining any of it and are instead letting flow straight to the other person.
The awakening phase is great, but unfortunately this is also when the real work starts, not when it ends.
In order for both twins to be capable of having a functional relationship, whether with each other or with anyone else, they have to undergo the process of peeling back layers of ego and trauma. Since ego usually covers trauma, it doesn’t not come away easily or willingly. It’s a survival mechanism and one which has probably served its purpose up until now.
Think about it: if you continue to obsess over this other person after separation, are you likely to be an interesting and well-rounded individual with something to bring to the table in a relationship, or are you a pit of need?
A strong “connection” is not the basis for a great relationship.
Hear me out: if you attach too much significance to the label of a Twin Flame and therefore that other person, you will be willing to put up with too much crap from them because you believe that the connection cannot be replaced. You might be correct, but does that make it the right connection?
Do you really want to be in a state of needing someone for the rest of your life? Do you really want to be in a position where you cannot stand up for yourself if they don’t treat you well? Because I can guarantee that if you are incapable of walking away or letting them go fully, you will have no personal power and the dynamic will devolve into toxicity.
This is where the runner/chaser dynamic starts; because one person knows that the other is a complete doormat which they can take for granted and the other is so codependent that they can’t let it go.
So how is this actually done? What are some practical steps to breaking love-addiction and become a whole person who is no longer leaking energy to others?
First of all, you need to allow yourself to grieve the loss of all your attachments and expectations. You will have placed hopes and dreams in the idea of this person and possibly believed that destiny will fulfill all your needs without requiring you to do some very hard things.
Now you need to do some very hard things: stop checking up on them, stop watching tarot in the hopes there will be a sign that they’ll come back to save you from your misery, and stop buying into the notion that a sign means what you think it means.
Yes, the universe will send nudges to tell you that this is your path, but part of that path might be a crumbling away of things you’re holding tightly to like a security blanket.
Let it go.
Instead, find things to occupy that obsessive, chemically dependent brain of yours like a creative endeavour. One of the first things to go when you’re in a toxic relationship which has you on a roller-coaster of highs and lows is your creative streak.
Why is that?
Because you can’t be creative when you’re in survival mode.
If a relationship is activating the 3 lower chakras and your heart is shutting down for self-preservation, you will be cut off from the expansive upper chakras which draw down inspiration and channel creative energy.
A stress-based relationship gives you butterflies for a reason and it isn’t the one we’re constantly taught. This is your gut saying that your basic needs are under threat and you should be looking for safety. Instead, we often look for that safety in the very thing which created the stress in the first place.
You’re in fear of being rejected, abandoned or having love withheld. It’s a fear-based relationship.
That’s why you need to be able to fulfill that love within yourself. Then, when you meet someone worthwhile, you’ll have lots to offer and if they aren’t interested or if they don’t reciprocate and meet you halfway, you have the ability to move on.
Replace need with allowing.
Replace expectations with expansiveness.
If you find a relationship which gives you the space to open up and expand your life, instead of contracting down into survival, this is one to take a chance on. You don’t need to know where it’s going, how long you’ll be together, or what they’re going to do for you because you’re good as you are.
Just let the relationship unfold as it happens and appreciate the other person for who they are instead of trying to make them into who you would like them to be.
You don’t need a twin flame; you are the flame.
Of course, there are obvious signs such as seeing an apparition, or getting a premonition about something which hasn’t happened yet, but a lot of the time psychic ability is more subtle and doesn’t give you lots of great confirmation to go on.
So how do you tell if you’re crazy, or just perceiving things outside of the “normal” range?
Most psychic senses are tied to the physical ones and in a way they can be easier to deal with because they’re more obvious and undeniable, like visions, sounds, smells and tastes. Then there’s the sense of touch which can be somewhat liminal in nature as it straddles the physical senses and the intuitive senses through material portals.
What do I mean by material portals? It’s when an object either holds a lot of psychic energy in and of itself, or when it acts as a conduit for someone who has psychic senses to tap into the energy of another person.
I think I’m skipping ahead too far, so lets wind it back and start with the physical senses…
People with psychic abilities usually have a dominant ability which is their strongest “muscle” and it’s usually how they tap into other energies to start with. It’ll be the key which unlocks the door to everything else and figuring out what your dominant ability is can help if you’re wanting to develop all of the psychic senses.
This is the one everyone knows and is familiar with, but it can also be one of the last senses to get developed. This is the sense of vision and being able to visualise.
Sometimes it will manifest in a full 3D apparition, and sometimes this can be witnessed by more than one person, but the majority of the time it is more like getting something in your mind’s eye. In order for an entity or ghost to be perceived by more than one person at the same time in the physical world, that spirit has to be very power in itself. Otherwise, it requires the observer to be the powerful one.
Some vision can be out of the corner of your eye, some of it can be right in front of you for a split second and some can be purely in your mind’s eye.
To develop this sense it is important to engage the imagination and use visualisation. This can be done through reading books, meditations, shamanic journeying, or writing stories. You can also explore exercises in spacial awareness, or start doing visual art.
Just like clairvoyance, this gift can manifest in full-blown auditory experiences like hearing your name yelled out when there is no one around, or perhaps hearing whispers.
In the more subtle form it can be times when you get a random song stuck in your head, even though you haven’t heard it lately, or it could be a phrase of words popping into your head.
Because this one can be so subtle at times, one of the best indications that you can develop this gift is if you have a natural musical inclination, or if you are particularly good at picking accents. On the downside, you might be someone who has trouble separating ambient noise, but can pick up whispered conversations which others wouldn’t normally be able to hear.
Developing the sense can be as easy as listening to music, particularly music tuned to the sacred geometry of the golden ratio such as 432hz, 528hz, 639hz, and 963hz. Shamanic drumming can also alter states of consciousness with a rhythm known as sonic driving. There’s been some research into how these sound frequencies affect brain patterns and can put someone into a hypnagogic state.
Knowing that a deceased loved-one is nearby because you can smell their perfume is more common than we sometimes think. Scent is closely tied to memory and is the sense which can access those memories the fastest. For this reason it can be a signature used by visiting ghosts to indicate that they’re nearby.
People who have this gift in spades tend to be overly sensitive to perfumes and often notice smells before other people do. They can also dissect layers within a fragrance and might be good at identifying a species of plant from the smell rather than the appearance.
Some people can taste things which aren’t actually present when they encounter spirit activity, or do mediumship. This can be affirming for people if a deceased loved one had a penchant for certain foods.
Our sense of taste can also encompass other areas such as if we taste blood, or seawater, or something like dirt. Forensic mediums find this useful when tracing the movements of a missing person or deceased person.
If this is a gift you have, you might be someone who vividly recalls specific meals and might find it the easiest way to associate places in your mind.
Developing this sense can be a very pleasurable pursuit, but you’ll have to watch your waistline…
This one isn’t so much a sense as it is to do with objects. If you pick up energy from antiques, family heirlooms, or second-hand junk, this might be something which comes naturally to you.
Objects absorb energy from the environment and from close personal interaction. The stronger the energy, the stronger the imprint so an object which was used in a murder will have a very intense connection to that event, but an object which sat in a kitchen cupboard inside a very ordinary house probably won’t. Not unless that object happened to be someone’s favourite frying pan.
You can develop this sense by browsing thrift shops and exploring museums. There are some crazy items inside slick display cases.
One of the most interesting things I have seen was at Port Arthur in Tasmania and it’s a display case full of innocuous little objects which people found lying on the ground at the site, took home with them and then returned by post because they got relentlessly haunted.
This is where we start getting into fuzzier territory because knowledge can be subjective if the truth has been concealed and no one can verify the information for you. This psychic knowing can hit you from nowhere and you’ll know what it is by the complete certainty of truth without a story of explanation surrounding it.
People with this gift get constantly frustrated because they know things which they can’t prove and others will deny until they’re blue in the face rather than own up to it.
Usually time wins out, but in the interim you can be branded paranoid, delusional, or a trouble-maker.
There’s not a lot you can do about this gift, except learn the art of letting it go and not needing to satisfy your own curiosity. At the same time, you can stop feeling the need to apologise to people when you get a hunch and act upon it.
Trust your intuition, don’t allow others to shame you into denying what you know, and leave others to their denial if that’s where they choose to be.
Again, this one is a little subjective and woolly, relying on external confirmation in order to know whether you’re correct or not. Feeling all the feels of other people can make you averse to crowds and subject to intense mood-swings which actually aren’t your own.
Again, its a case of listening to your intuition, but not forcing other’s to acknowledge things they’re uncomfortable talking about.
In a lot of ways, you need to work on separating yourself from this gift and working on your boundaries, rather than plunging further into it.
The interesting thing about the psychic senses is that the objective ones help you to ground into your physical experience and to practice mindfulness, while the more vague senses can overwhelm your sense of self and put you in a situation where you become lost.
Finding the balance between using all of them is crucial to remaining grounded and in touch with reality.
If you can master that, you’ll find greater control over the psychic senses and become able to use them more precisely.
If you have been searching for your purpose in life, you’re not alone. Many people, especially those with unique gifts and special life-paths have this problem.
So what is the key which will unlock this path for you?
In my experience the key is to have a rich inner world and a spiritual / creative passion. That sounds pretty simple, right? There you go. That’s literally the answer.
So why is it so damn hard to walk the path of purpose? Well, first, we need to discuss what is holding you back, then we can delve into how you open up your potential.
The first step into understanding how you get undermined or blocked from your purpose is to know how the inner-world works. The space within all of us which houses the soul and the imagination is how we tap into collective consciousness and access eternal love. Basically, it’s how we love ourselves.
This inner well of unconditional love keeps us in our integrity, our passions, curiosity, ability to learn and also a sense of inner-strength which allows us to make bold moves in life independent of other people. When external relationships let us down, this inner love does not.
We all need to establish that relationship with ourselves, nurture it and value it. When we can do that, we find the strength to stand up to people who don’t have our best interests at heart and we’re able to continue nurturing ourselves when the world can’t.
Tapping into the heart-space is where you will find this, and undertaking heart chakra meditations is a great way to practice that, but for people who have been through a lot of difficulty with relationships, this will also be a painful process. You have to spend time unpacking the trauma, forgiving yourself and others, then being able to truly let it go and start moving forward.
A lot of that pain stems from a process which we are all subjected to by toxic people in our environment, and this is the important thing to understand: Toxic people like to take whatever is nearest and dearest to your heart, and shit all over it.
There’s some very crucial reasons for this.
Firstly, it’s part of the process of isolating a victim from support networks and gaslighting them into a situation where the toxic person creates the reality construct, exerts power and control over the other person, strips them of all hope, and then hands them the only reality and “truth” they’re allowed to have: an inherently negative one.
Secondly, toxic people have no joy or creativity of their own and they begrudge everyone else the ability to have this in life.
and… Thirdly, it helps the toxic person to feel superior is some way by presenting cynicism as either the intellectual or moral high ground. The toxic viewpoint is “street smart” or “enlightened” or “backed by science” or “backed by doctrine” when the reality is that they’re stunted and limited, or have cherry-picked their information to support a negative viewpoint.
The telling thing is that it’s all negativity, despite whatever package it’s presented in. Cynicism for its own sake is completely useless.
Often you will be told it’s for your own good, but the litmus test for whether criticism is constructive or not is whether it can give you insight to solve a problem, or if it just creates a problem and then says that it’s insurmountable. Helpful critiques are all about problem-solving and moving around obstacles, not placing more of them in your path.
Lets examine the first point in a bit more detail…
As I said earlier, a rich inner world which brings you joy and is a source of personal power, creativity, discernment, love and integrity. It will give you a back-bone when you really need it.
Toxic influences; whether that’s people, systems and structures of power, or lower-astral entities (yes, I categorise that bunch of dicks in this too) need you to believe that you have no support. If they can convince of this, you will capitulate your personal power to them and not question the ways in which they use and abuse you.
How a toxic person cuts you off from supportive external relationships like family and friends, is the same way they cut you off from your inner world. It is all about isolating you, confusing you, and making you feel rejected by the very thing or people who love you the most.
In terms of spiritual beliefs, you can see this a lot with different religious leaders who put themselves into a position of authority and then proceed to make a mockery of the very thing they’re supposed to represent.
In creative endeavours it could be someone who belittles your music, or artworks, or writing. They might have zero talent of their own, but they’ll happily tear down everything you attempt and make you believe that even thinking you’re good enough is pure stupidity.
These people don’t want you to have that internal support systems in the same way that they don’t want you to have an external support system. They know that if you’re strong enough, you’ll never put up with their bullshit.
The real danger of these people often comes after you see through their lies and understand what they tried to do to you: they essentially tried to rob you of meaning and purpose. This usually leads to anger, or even rage.
If you’re still in the angry phase, don’t be too hard on yourself. It’s ok to be mad. Just be careful that you’re not demolishing all of the good along with the bad, and remember that at some point you have to move past the anger because if you stay there, it turns into bitterness and that’s the point where you can become the very thing that you despise.
I’ve seen this with friends who are atheist. They swing too far in the opposite direction from toxic religion and start rejecting all spirituality as bogus and delusional. Then they usually start brow-beating anyone who still has beliefs and that pushes people away because there’s no tolerance for differing ideas or questions. They’re as closed to questioning and dogmatic as fundamentalist Christians.
When I joined the Druids and then later joined a Witchcraft Coven, I was told that paganism is not there as a way of giving other religions the middle-finger. They have to tell people this because some people seek this path because they still feel rejected or abandoned by their religion of origin.
It’s a wound which needs to be addressed before you can properly engage with a new spiritual path. You can see what happens if it isn’t dealt with all the time.
A prime example of this is Doreen Virtue. She started out Christian, felt rejected by the church, got heavily into Spiritualism and then rejected that and went back to extreme Jesus worship. There’s nothing really wrong with changing your mind, and it can be a very healthy sign, but she totally denounced people she had worked with as the devil and branded everyone who practices the new-age as delusional.
That’s not kind at all.
This behaviour would suggest that there are deep wounds to do with her spiritual path that she hasn’t healed and might be avoiding in some way.
Witchcraft, druidry and paganism are not there to be used as a “fuck-you” to other religions. That’s like a rebound relationship where you deliberately choose someone who is the antithesis of your ex, or perhaps is “better” in some way to prove that they were wrong to reject you. It doesn’t prove anything except that you’re clearly not over it. Like Doreen, those wounds can lead us back into an abusive relationship because we never resolved the trauma within ourselves and released it.
If you have those triggers, you need to deal with the original wounds so that you can either embrace your first religion in a healthier way, or choose a new path with a lightness of spirit.
Just because you were hurt by a particular spiritual practice, doesn’t mean that there’s something wrong with the religion, it might just mean that the people interpreting that religion are a bunch of assholes. Sometimes you have to venture out on your own and wander the spiritual wilderness in order to re-set your inner-compass. That compass may lead back to your starting point, in which case, don’t let another person’s crap colour your relationship with divinity.
You need to find that careful balance between remaining open to new ideas and curious about life, while also practicing discernment. The real work in life, your true purpose and destiny, is to forge ahead with the things that bring you joy in spite of the people and things which try to drag you down.
The thing is, if you possess an inner light which shines brightly in dark places, you will make people who wallow in their own crap very uncomfortable. They will go out of their way to put that light out because it shows them up in unflattering ways.
They’re shells of human-beings, like a burnt out car in the desert. You don’t want to be anything like them, or even acceptable to anyone like that.
You need to become the anti-cynic:
Keep your child-like sense of wonder.
Find joy and gratitude in the small things that we take for granted.
Don’t let other people’s issues become yours.
Create something on a regular basis, even if it isn’t great. That’s nobody else’s business except your own. Just work on making things which make you happy. It doesn’t have to sell. It doesn’t have to go viral, but if it touches one other person or gives them a little ray of hope, it has done it’s job.
We never get to know how we impact other people. That’s not something we’re usually privy to, but we have to trust that what we do with our lives has some kind of meaning somewhere in the world and just keep putting it out there.
If you’re in need to coaching in this area of life, you can find my services Here.
In your witchcraft journey, never underestimate the importance of recording the things that you’re learning. Does this mean that it has to be fancy or perfectly curated? Not necessarily…
You can watch a video of how I do my journals and create a grimoire below…
What I recommend for people starting out, is to have a variety of journals and use all of them in different ways:
Never underestimate how a diary of the year can help to facilitate journal-keeping. It’s already got a layout which helps to prompt keeping records and is especially great for mapping out astrological events for the year ahead. You can plan your moon-phase rituals, make notes of what you have planted at different times, and see if predictions have come true or not.
This is usually a nice book which you will hopefully keep for a long time and use it to record concise and important facts about esoteric subjects so that you can use it later like a reference book.
Literally, this can be a recipe book for cooking. A lot of witches include kitchen-witchery in their practice and having a nice collection of your most successful recipes is such a great thing. It can also teach you the practice of creating spell journals.
Very similar to a recipe book, this one can be used to record your ingredients and methodology for various spells as you either learn them or develop them yourself.
This is a journal which you might throw out at a later date when you no longer need that information, or if you have transcribed it into your fancy grimoire in a more cohesive fashion. I use these a lot when it comes to writing my blog and making YouTube videos because I can keep one in my bag at all times and just scribble notes for myself while I’m out and about.
There’s probably also an app for that, but I find physical writing is faster so I don’t lose the information.
Post-its and blank notepads are great for dot-point lists and short notes which will be expanded upon at a later date. Keep them all over the house so you’re never far from one when inspiration strikes and especially keep one of these or one of the shit-kicker journals next to your bed for those times when you get an information dump while you’re trying to sleep.
For anyone who prefers to express themselves through drawings rather than words, this is especially great. There’s a lot of symbolism in esoteric studies and being able to refer to that is especially important so that you can learn more about astrology, alchemy and various types of Gnosticism.
There are no fixed “rules” about what your book of shadows or grimoire should be and everybody’s practice and journey are different. Don’t feel like you have to do what someone else is doing. Take the bits which work for you and ditch the bits which don’t.
When it comes to numerology, there are a couple of schools of thought; one says that there are 9 life path numbers, and the other says that there are 9 basic life paths and 3 or even 4 master numbers.
You need to use all of the digits from your date of birth to calculate it down to a single digit and there is a particular “correct” way to calculate which will ensure you get the true number and not a false-positive (although I personally think that might still count).
Correct way to calculate:
(D+D) + (M+M) + (Y+Y+Y+Y) = Life Path #
(0+6) + (0+3) + (1+9+8+2)
6 + 3 + 2 = 11
You can just double-check the result by adding each number to the other to see if it gets to the same result:
6+3+1+9+8+2 = 29
2 + 9 = 11
In numerology your name, date of birth and other key features of your identity can be broken down into single-digit numbers. To do this you have to add together individual digits until it reduces down to a single one. However, some birthdays or names end up in double-digit numbers which are referred to as masters. These are 11, 22, 33 and sometimes 44.
For some numerologists, that number should still become a single digit and there is no such thing as a master. However, if you have ever met a master number, or are one, there is something undeniably different about them. In particular, they usually have a harder time than most on this planet.
If your birthday has reduced to a single digit, don’t worry, this is perfectly normal and can be just as challenging and rewarding as the masters. All souls have to go through the various life paths, sometimes in sequential order, but not usually. Some of us have to re-take a life path if we didn’t accomplish what we set out do to during a previous incarnation so it can be key to your success to know what your soul’s objective is so that you can work towards it.
If you find that your life path is challenging for you, past life regression can help to unlock some of the issues previously encountered in order to move past those same stumbling blocks.
Being a life-path 1 is not the same as being a basic bitch. Instead, you’re considered to be an instigator, a rebel and a creator. You’re the lone wolf and the wanderer, even if you enjoy being social.
Learning to be autonomous, independent and not let other people’s negativity hold you back is your main challenge.
A number 2 life path seeks to work in partnerships and to connect people. They’re brilliant at creating new things (which is connected to the archetype of partnering up) and they know how to draw people out of themselves to get the best from people.
Your challenge in life is not to resort to people-pleasing or losing yourself in relationships.
This life path has the gift of the gab and are excellent public speakers, singers and mediators. Your gift is to impart knowledge through language.
Your challenge will be to know when silence is more strategic than speaking.
A life path 4 is someone who can solve almost any problem they’re presented with. Fours seek solutions as well as stability. They like things to be on an even-keel and they can be a bit of a stick in the mud, or potentially stubborn about doing things a certain way because they know it’s the right way. You’re very pragmatic and know how to get something done in the real world.
You big challenge is to realise that people aren’t problems and you aren’t responsibly for fixing everything.
You can literally do anything you set your mind to. Fives have an endless supply of talent, creativity and an ability to chip away at things. They have a lot of enthusiasm which can sometimes be tactless and overbearing for others.
You can become paralysed by perfectionism and end up doing nothing.
The number 6 is all about love, beauty and aesthetics. They bring joy to a lot of people by creating beautiful spaces, making themselves attractive and highlighting the beauty in others. They can see a world in a grain of sand and heaven in a wild flower and this sense of wonder can remind others that there is much to appreciate about the world.
Remembering to be practical and realistic is your main challenge.
Sevens can break down a complex issue into logical components and help others to understand the inner-workings. Nothing is too convoluted for them which is why they can be amazing philosophers, scientists or spiritual gurus.
Over-analysis is your potential downfall, a bit like Chidi in The Good Place. Sometimes things are actually really simple.
Like the numeral 8 would suggest, this life path is all about unlocking the secrets of the infinite. Sometimes, eights will do this without even realising they’re doing it. Manifesting comes easily, as does pattern recognition which is why you can find it easy to slip into a state of flow by figuring out when the right time is to catch the wave.
Your challenge is not to become too complacent or flippant because it’ll alienate the people around you.
Nines take humanitarian efforts very seriously and see it as their mission to help others up. Championing causes, pitching in to help during a disaster, or just figuring out what an underlying problem is so it can be fixed are all strengths at your disposal.
Over-giving to the point where it becomes detrimental to you is a big challenge for this life path. You’re not responsible for everyone else and you also matter.
Some souls have volunteered for the master program, which is why their life path numbers will equal 11, 22, 33 or 44. These souls have to have already gone through the previous life paths in order to be allowed to undertake this task. They’re old souls. Most of them are star-seeds as well, purely because they’ve been doing this for so long they’re really well-traveled.
It’s not for the faint-hearted because it serves a dual purpose; undertake massive soul development and raise the vibration of humanity.
In fact, duality is kind of a theme for the masters. It’s implied in the numbers, being double-digits. Their dual purpose for themselves and the collective is a big responsibility but their dual life paths make this task even harder.
Their life path isn’t just the 11 or 22 or 33, but also the single-digit life path at the same time. For example, an 11 will be required to undertake a double 1 path (the 1 path multiplied by two) plus the 2 life path. The 33 will be required to undertake a double 3 life path plus the 6 life path. The aim is to fuse both life paths into a master path.
On top of this, a lot of them might be sent their twin-flame to act as a catalyst for the master path and force them into it. If their twin is another master number they might be meant to work together, but it could be that only one of them has volunteered for this in this lifetime and holding onto the twin will prevent them from surging forward on their life path.
It’s no wonder they start cracking under the pressure.
When a master starts to become scared, or overwhelmed they generally try to hide in the single-digit life path. So a 22 will try to be a basic 4 and they’ll only deal in the material world and try to find stability in careers and family. An 11 might try to be a housewife who gives everything to her partner and neglects herself.
The single-digit life path tends to be the shadow aspect but shadow can also be found in the master number if the ego starts to be pursued instead of the higher self.
Masters cannot self-serve, or they will self-destruct. This isn’t the same as taking care of yourself or putting your needs first, but it is about needing to grasp at possessions and people in order to avoid doing the work.
When you avoid the path, the universe will send you course-corrections. These can be subtle, or they can be absolute destruction, depending on how soon you pick up on them and act accordingly.
If you’re a master number, you will be challenged to move out of your comfort zone on a regular basis. When you start clinging to a security blanket the universe will start prying your fingers off to make you let go. The art of Detachment is a key to the process of undertaking your life path.
You will not be able to play it safe in this life without encountering major obstacles. For you, playing it safe is actually the unsafe option. Because of this, you will probably scare the shit out of people in your life who look at your maneuvers and decisions as truly reckless. You might get labelled as a loose canon, or people will find you odd, even if they like you.
Struggling in love, despite being the most loving people is a common theme and settling down to have a family is difficult unless it is combined with their soul’s purpose. The earlier they can find flow, the better, but it is common for masters to be late bloomers as they often resist the process and try to be normal for a long time.
Serious life challenges are part of the growth process for masters. As one life path 11 master, Chris Martin, wrote;
Under this pressure, under this weight,
We are diamonds taking shape.
It’s important to note that everyone has intuitive abilities, but somehow for an 11 it’ll be off the chain. An 11 can have psychic abilities which others only dream about, but because it’s such an integral part of their being it can be difficult to switch it off in order to have peace and quiet.
Seers know people at a level which is almost invasive. They can see through another person’s soul, usually within ten seconds of meeting them. Because of this, two things usually happen; first of all they get conditioned by society to give people the benefit of the doubt and neglect their instincts, even though eventually they’ll prove correct; and they will hold back in relationships / friendships because if they told people what they really know it would freak them out.
11s tend to hide quite a bit because they’re too intense in their true form for most people to handle. They see too much about others, they see things which aren’t there, and they see the truth behind the facade. You can imagine this a bit like Neo in The Matrix when he starts seeing the world in code.
One of the things an 11 does is seeing other’s potential and how to unlock it. However, that person would have to put in the actual work if they really want to bring that insight into reality. They have the collaborative pull from the 2 life path as well as an ability to strike out on their own and be autonomous if they have to. They don’t need others, but they understand that success is only meaningful if it can be shared.
11s make amazing counselors because they see all angles of the situation and how they interplay with each other. When people appreciate their honesty a lot can be achieved, but many people prefer the sugar-coated version and an 11 will hold them accountable instead which they find very confronting.
Barack and Michelle Obama are both life path 11 alumni, as are a number of other politicians, plus Chris Martin from Coldplay and Michael Jordan. They’re people who know how to lead by example and make everyone around them braver as a result. They’re also loyal to their teams and make their success collective rather than individual.
Anyone can develop the skill of alchemy, but a 22 is the master of it. This master can transmute the esoteric into the material world and essentially alter reality. They can create things which don’t even exist yet and their true potential is only limited by their imagination.
This group is the most grounded of the masters and are able to make that connection between the higher realms of consciousness/spirit, and the earthly 3D reality we currently experience. They can use practical things to be transcendent and they can bring transcendence into practical use.
22s are the most likely to have health family units which are examples for others to follow, or to become environmental activists. Science and psychology appeal to them equally and they’re great at applying one discipline to the other.
Famous alumni for this group include Will Smith, The Dalai Lama and David Attenborough, who’re all enlightened visionaries in their own ways, but also very down-to-earth.
Spiritual enlightenment is a path we all need to take at some point in the soul journey, but a 33 is the designated leader. They forge the path through the jungle so that others can follow more easily and they make it look effortless, although behind the scenes they can be going through a pretty traumatic life (like all masters). Creative and inventive, they can hack the universe and then teach others how it is done.
True to the 6 life path they enjoy beauty in all things, often appearing almost goddess-like (or god-like) and producing transcendent art such as music, design or photography. Their star quality will shine bright, even in the darkest of times.
For a 33, creativity can be a vehicle for their teachings. They use art to convey their insights in order to make it more palatable for mass-consumption, even if some people are unconscious about what they’re really saying. Hidden meanings in song lyrics, or subliminal messages in a painting can plant a seed in people’s minds which takes root and eventually blooms into a deeper understanding at a later date.
Some 33 alumni are John Lennon, Stargirl the Practical Witch and Delta Goodrem, who’re all singer/songwriters as well as spiritually insightful after battling huge odds in life. A lot of their music can teach us eternal truths about life and love. Also in the 33’s are Einstein and Edison who cracked many scientific discoveries and have left a legacy of learning decades after their deaths.
If you’re a master number and in need of advice, or just someone to talk to, you can find my Services page for coaching sessions. I’m a life path 11 so I have been through a lot of the challenges already.
A long time ago there was a legend about wise men turning lead into gold and discovering the secret to eternal life. This school of mysticism was known as Alchemy and created the foundation of modern chemistry, but while it had it’s practical uses, there was an element of spirituality to the Order which was hidden from everyone except the initiates.
Roughly two years ago I joined the druid society of OBOD: The Order of Bards, Ovates and Druids. They’re a school of pagan mysticism and I highly recommend their courses if you would like to join them. At that time I was already well and truly on my path of awakening, having studied with a group of mediums for a year.
OBOD teaches many philosophies as well as the art of Celtic Shamanism, but the thing I found most intriguing was the idea that alchemy is not just a material-world practice, but something much deeper.
Using symbolism, alchemy teaches us about transmuting pain into growth.
Combined with the schools of astronomy and astrology, alchemy provides insight into how energy flows from one state to another and is never designed to stay still or to stagnate. A lot of the symbols used in astrology actually come from alchemy.
In our modern world of trying to eliminate risk, we’re increasing taught that life is supposed to be safe and certain. We’re taught to fear uncertainty, to avoid pain, and to avoid responsibility for ourselves by placing blame. This mindset is that of the “victim” narrative and it keeps us stuck in disappointment and trauma. We let our set-backs define us instead of transcending them.
On my arm I have a tattoo of planetary alignments with a bow and an arrow nocked ready to go in the centre and another arrow further ahead.
I got this etched into my skin so that I would see it every day and remind myself that in times when it feels like life is pulling me back, its actually the bow drawing back the arrow, ready to launch it into a new phase of my life. It’s up to me which direction the arrow is pointing and when the time is right to release it. My logo is also based on the symbol of the arrow.
In true spiritual alchemy, the lead symbolises the set-backs in life. Those situations that weigh us down and make us feel dull and hopeless. Transmuting it into gold symbolises the art of taking disappointment and being grateful for the lessons it provides, then using it to create growth and wealth within the soul.
In my work I have seen people who survived horrific circumstances and who bear massive scars for life. People who are literally missing limbs and yet they still have their humanity in tact and they still have a sense of humour and joy about them. I don’t pity those people at all. I admire them.
The people I truly pity are the ones who have told themselves in life that they cannot do it. They don’t have what it takes to do x, y or z in order to overcome obstacles. So now they’re stuck and helpless. Perpetual victims. Those are the same people who will blame you for their problems, squander every opportunity you give them to fix their circumstances, and repeatedly tell the same story of woe for the rest of their lives.
Their entire identity is build around the worst things that have ever happened to them. Without that narrative they don’t know who they are or what they’re capable of.
We can create victims of circumstance in our own children if we never let them handle their own adversity. We can enable victimhood in others if we continually take over the responsibility for action from another person. This stunts their personal growth and is very disempowering. There’s nothing wrong with helping someone, but it should always be a collaborative effort.
Using pain and difficulty as a means of growth is like burying a seed in cow manure. It can seem like the worst possible circumstance to be in, but without all that crap the seed wouldn’t have the material it needs to transform into a plant. That’s why we need to be grateful for adversity; because it is a catalyst for growth. If we’re too comfortable in life, we never move. Discomfort is always your friend. Make sure you’re using it.
As for the secret to eternal life…
The soul is pure conscious energy and it cannot be destroyed. It merely changes states of being and so death is never the end of the story, merely the start of a new chapter.