Monday, August 7, 2017

Folk Magic to Attract Money

Photo Credit: Biosynthesis 24 on flickr
Simple folk magic for attracting money to you: Stand on a bridge over a swiftly-running creek or river, facing upstream so the water is rushing towards you. Toss a coin in the water (the higher denomination the better) and ask the spirits of the water and the land to send more money your way. Picture the abundance flowing over you and into you as you absorb the energy of the rushing water headed towards you. 

Don't forget to leave an offering for the spirits of the place in thanks! This will work better if it is an area where you have already cultivated relationship with the land spirits by regularly leaving offerings and being a steward of the land.

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Time to Follow the Path of Change

This is not a time to follow the path of fear. This is not a time to  become mired in denial. It's not a time to look back at the way things used to be. It's not a time for anger because you didn't deserve this. It's not a time for moaning about how things shouldn't be this way.

It's time for change.

And change--real, world-altering change--is never easy. It's hard. It may be the hardest thing you've ever done in your life. It may encompass everything you are and everything you believe and everything you think you know. Because that is how it works.

Yes, it's a time for anger--anger channeled into strength. Anger channeled into figuring out ways to create change.

It's a time to look forward. To visualize the world the way it needs to be, not the way it is or the way it used to be.

It's a time to work on ourselves, to begin the change within ourselves. And then, like lighting one candle from another, to spread the change. One by one.

They are few and we are many. Hundreds. Thousands. Millions...of individuals.And if each one creates change, even a tiny bit of change, then those changes add up.

It's a time to rebuild tribe and community. Time to find those you can trust, who will have your back, who will help you when you need help...because the power of the tribe is stronger than the power of an individual.

It's time.

It's time to walk the path of change.

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Rebellious Act # 3: Support Artists & the Arts

 In an ideal world, this would not be considered a Rebellious Act. But under the current Powers That Be, who seem determined to strip away anything that does not make a $Profit$, supporting the arts is a wonderful way to support the Rebellion and show your Rebel Streak.

Life without art would be a neverending dull gray sea of mundanity. When you support the arts, and independent artists, you enrich the existence of the artist as well as your own, and the existence of those around you who get to share your unique art-full existence.

Stop consuming the mass-produced "art" that is marketed in department stores and chain stores. Lose the middleman and seek out local artists or any of the weird freaky people hawking their wares on the internet. Discover new music, new books, and new ways to dress yourself and your space. You might even discover that you are an artist too.

“The arts are essen­tial to any com­plete national life. The State owes it to itself to sus­tain and encour­age them….Ill fares the race which fails to salute the arts with the rev­er­ence and delight which are their due.” ~ Winston Churchill

Friday, March 24, 2017

Rebellious Act #2: Take a walk outside

Yup. Get off the couch. Stuff your phone in your pocket. Go outside and take a walk, even if it's only around the block. Pay attention to what is around you, not just what is on the screen.

Even better, get really far outside. Into the green spaces. Take a walk in the woods. Dip your toes in a creek. Sit beside a river. Take half an hour or more and absorb the spirit of wild places.

Bonus Rebel Points if you:
  • talk to your neighbors
  • walk a dog
  • hike
  • take a child with you
  • sprinkle wildflower seeds
  • leave offerings
The Powers That Be want you to be an unhappy drone who spends all day obsessively checking your phone and wondering what all those famous people are doing and thinking and buying. Be a Rebel. Fill your mind with the sights and sounds and energy of the outdoors. Speak to the birds and the animals and the trees. Be a little strange. You'll be different from the herd.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Rebellious Act #1: Make Something

This is always my number one favorite Rebellious Act. Make something.

Make dinner. Make art. Make a shirt...a quilt...a poem...a story...a garden. Make a mess. Make a fuss. Make plans.

The Powers That Be want you to be a quiet, obedient little consumer. They want you to buy the things that THEY make.

Every time YOU make something, it's one less thing that they can sell you. One less dollar in their pockets. And it's one more skill for YOU, and no one can take your skills from you.

Let's all try to squeeze in one Rebellious Act a day. Go for it.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Thoughts on Animism

Photo by Jack Wolf
I got a question the other day about animism...especially how we view animism in the Thornish ways. I thought I would share that discussion here.

When I look at animism, I'm basically using the definition here from

animism (noun)

1.the belief that natural objects, natural phenomena, and the universe itself possess souls.

Here's my take on animism. Everything has a spirit. You can use the word soul but I don't...I guess because the word "soul" has too many Abrahamic connotations for me. So everything has a spirit within, natural or manufactured. It just does. They are all a part of the Great Essence, the Great Mystery...which Thornish people like to explain as the "operating system" of the universe.

Animism is a concept I didn't really have explained to me until later in life. It's just something that if you are sensitive, you know. It's why some people (like me) talk to everything around them. Trees, rocks, cars, computers, the kitchen stove, name it.

Yes, it goes against what we are taught. Welcome to the Unlearning.

Kids have a special connection to the Otherworlds, before they are told that they don't and it's hard to try to preserve that and fight against the propaganda from the mundane world. The next generation can be so much better than we are, if we work at it...because they don't have to do all that backtracking and unlearning to get back to where we started.

As for whether the Great Mystery gave everything a spirit...I don't get too hung up on who created who or that whole chicken and the egg thing. I think the Great Essence or Great Mystery is so far beyond our understanding that we are kinda chasing our nonexistent tails trying to figure it out. I know what I know. I know the spirit is in all things because I see it...hear it...feel it. Some people can't feel it anymore--or don't want to--and I don't spend too much time trying to convince those kind of folks that it's there. If they go out in the woods for a day and a night, open themselves up, and see what happens...they might be surprised.

Does it have to be alive to have a spirit ? No. But if it's dead (here in this world) its spirit may not be here in this dimension, this realm of the multiverse. We're basically all spirits riding around in a physical body conveyance of some it a person, an animal, or a tree suit. Your body dies in this 'verse and your spirit often goes off to your ancestors or somewhere else. Or hangs around and bugs your family still here. 

Does this makes you feel insignificant? Like you are not really the top of the food chain? Or the dominant life form on this world? Good! It's supposed to! That is why Thornish people often do a remind themselves of their tiny place in a web of spirits and creatures in the multiverse...and the vast number of them are far more advanced than we are.

Should you ask permission then, if you are interacting with these other spirits? It's a polite thing to do before walking in the woods...crossing a river...picking up a stone to move it...gathering flowers. Sometimes it's not so much "Can I?" but just an honoring of the spirits there. Showing respect.

I leave offerings all the time, especially when I am in the green spaces. Sometimes the only offering you have to leave are your words, your intent, your respect. The spirits understand. Believe me, if you start leaving offerings or even speaking the words (aloud or in your head) you will feel the response of the spirits around you. They might be surprised at first and angry because most people don't bother. But you will develop, over time, a relationship with the spirits around you and they will start to recognize you and welcome you (as long as you don't make promises you can't keep.)

My standard "sacred mix" for offerings is a small ziploc bag I always carry with me. Usually it is a mix of birdseed, nuts, peanuts, trail mix, sage, mugwort, tobacco, dried changes with whatever I have on hand at the time and the season. In the spring I like to add wildflower seeds. Depending on where you are going you might supplement it with tiny rocks, crystals, copper pennies, get a feel for what the spirits around you like after a while. Added to this is your intent, your honor, your respect when you leave it. If I'm in a crowdy place I will usually just send up a mental or whispered offering but in more secluded places I'll leave a handful of sacred mix and some words.

The point here is not to take the spirits around us for granted. It's to acknowledge that you know your place in the multiverse is tiny but that you can and should live in Balance with everything around you. And once you begin to acknowledge and honor all those other opens up the worlds around you in ways many have never even imagined.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Harrownight Thoughts

Copyright 2016 Jack Wolf
The Rekindling has begun.

On October 31st 1958 six men, all members of the Black Talon Society, stood beside a fire in northern British Columbia, Canada. Here they laid the framework for what would become known as the Thornish pagan tradition. They celebrated the creation of the first Thornish lodge, called the Raven Lodge after the tribal name of one of its founders. The older lodges of the Black Talon Society were fading away, their members choosing to step back into the secrecy of the woods from whence they came.

Raven chose to take his lodge forward, selectively recruiting new members, sharing the knowledge of the Thornwood, forging human weapons to work for the sacred Balance. Many strong Masters were made during this golden age of the Thornwood, the ones whose names are passed down with their teachings, names still honored around Thornish fires.

But the members of the Raven Lodge knew that this golden age would not last. They had seen that the Thornish tradition would begin to fade from sight, carried by only a few remaining Thornsmen and Thornswomen. They also foresaw times ahead that would find many people returning to their pagan roots, world-changing times. They saw a world that would need those who are willing to work to return Balance to the world.

The Thornish Masters that remained sensed the changing of the winds and the approach of the coming storm. Meeting in Council, as they had not done in many years, they decided to create a new lodge and step forward as they had never done before and share some of their teachings.

Photo by Jack Wolf
On October 31st 2016, Harrownight, Thornish Masters marked the Rekindling of the Thornish tradition.

I made many offerings that night. Standing by the sea, in the glow of the fire, I spoke with my ancestors, both of blood and of the Thornwood. I called to those who will join us at the Harrownight fire in years to come.

We spent many hours talking of the future of the Thornish tradition and the storms that even now rock the foundations of the outer world as we know it.

Swords and spears are forged with heat and hammering. Shar--as Thornish initiates are called--are forged by trials and ordeals and tribal bonds. Challenging times, rough times--these tap into the deep vein of Bloodfire and bring forth those who are strong, who see through the Lies, who welcome the chance to restore Balance.

We are Shar. We were forged for times like these. And now we begin to build new tribal fires from the embers of the old.

Cover design by Jack Wolf & Mandrake of Oxford
If you would like to learn more about the Thornish pagan tradition, this blog and Jack's blog are a good place to start. Jack's new book The Thornish Path is available from Mandrake of Oxford  or and many other booksellers.