Spring’s Rebirth – Slavic and Balkan Pysanky

Elder Mountain Dreaming @gmail

Compilation by Phoenix of Elder Mountain –The Rites of Spring is about honoring our rebirth and the earth’s rebirth, this has specific rituals that are ancient and help us stay connected to our moon nature, our soul and our emotional nature in a positive way. Here at Elder Mountain we do the ritual of building the archaic Goddess Marzanna Effigy (at the autumn equinox and winter solstice) and then burn and throw her into the lake or river, on the day of the Spring Equinox to transform Winter into Spring (and the symbolism of the grandmother into the maiden once again.)

A Pysanka (Ukrainian: писанка, plural: pysanky) is a spring or easter (ostara) egg, decorated with traditional folk designs using a wax-resist method. The word pysanka comes from the verb pysaty, “to write”, as the designs are not painted on, but written with beeswax. Many other eastern Europeans decorate eggs using…

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Cabin Fever: You Get What You Ask For

Appalachian Ink ~ Home of Anna Wess (and Granny)

Every now and then, I get a glimpse of Granny’s wild spirit, the very one she’s kept hidden from the rest of us girls no matter how many times we’ve sat around the table in her kitchen. Sometimes, just sometimes, she lets that spirit out. And if there’s anything that’ll bring out her wild spirit, it’s cabin fever, sisters. Cabin fever and those bottled spirits in the china cabinet. And memories of them bitches, of course.

Granny turns on the radio and tunes it to her favorite station, WRIC-AM 540 radio in Richlands, Virginia, and she continues a’ singing the song in her head, some tune about Tom Dooley and his imminent demise, even while the announcer reads the local obituaries, forlorn organ a’ playing and all. Granny don’t know any of those dead people on the radio. And even if she does, she doesn’t let on. Lord, no.

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No Self Is An Island

By Kingsley Dennis

‘No man is an island entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main’ … John Donne

‘For eternally and always there is only now, one and the same now; the present is the only thing that has no end.’ … Erwin Schrodinger



Whether we like to admit it or not, we need other people. Other people in our lives help to teach us about who we are. Their actions and attitudes are like a mirror that reflects to us not only aspects of human behaviour but also facets of our social conditioning.

It is said that our most dominant feature as humans, and similarly our most ignored facet, is that when we are speaking about other people, or things, we are actually speaking about ourselves. Because of this blindness we actually need other people in order to project ourselves onto them. And then perhaps in some moment of clarity we will gain the insight that our descriptions of others are in fact descriptions of ourselves. It is through our social environment and connections that a light may eventually shine back at us.

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Symbolism of Violet: February Birth Flower

Good Witches Homestead

The violet has a charming and long history of mythology. Greek myth states that Zeus fell in love with Io. Zeus was afraid that Hera, his wife, would discover him and Io, so he made Io into a white heifer. Zeus created the sweet-scented flower that we know as the violet for Io to eat while she was a heifer. Hera placed an insect pest on Io as the white heifer, so she roamed all over the land trying to free herself from the pest.  Zeus finally caught the heifer and put his hand on her, and she turned back into Io. She gave birth to their child, who founded many nations.

Another Greek myth states that Persephone, a young lady, was walking in a field of violets when Hades saw her and fell in love with her. Hades took her to his kingdom of death and the world became…

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Primrose: The Flower of February

Good Witches Homestead

COMMON NAME:  primrose
GENUS:  Primula
P. denticulata-lavender, purple, or white flowers; grows to 12 inches. P. japonica ‘Millar Crimson’-flowers whorled around 24-inch stem; blooms May-June. P. polyanthus-best known; colors are red, pink, blue, gold, and white, all with small yellow eyes.
FAMILY:  Primulaceae
BLOOMS:  spring
TYPE:  perennial
DESCRIPTION:  Primroses form an attractive rosette of crinkly, light green leaves. The flowers are generally brightly colored and occur in tight bundles on individual stems above the leaves.
CULTIVATION:  Needing partial shade, primroses thrive in well-drained, rich soil. They are indigenous to cool, moist meadows and woodland environments  Duplicating these conditions as closely as possible will create the best growing conditions for primroses. The soil should not be allowed to dry completely. To retain vigorously blooming plants, divide clumps every four to five years. Seeds should be sown in midsummer for bloom the following spring.

primrose day

Primrose is beloved…

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Ozark Encyclopedia – P – Pawpaw

Mountain Man Traditional Healing

Pawpaw – Asimina triloba

Parts used: bark, fruit

Traditional uses: Fruit used for food. Inner bark used to make strong ropes and string. Wood used in pegging for various illnesses. Fruit used in ritual associated with curing a man of drunkenness. Used in love magic and to prevent infidelity. A magical wood, associated with death and witchcraft. Used to protect from evil spells and curses. Seeds associated with death rituals.

Use in pegging against infidelity – “A hillman whose wife is ‘triflin’ on him’ is sometimes persuaded that he can make everything right by going into the woods at midnight and boring a hole in the crotch of a pawpaw tree. This done, he mutters a secret Biblical quotation, drives a stout wooden peg into the auger hole, and walks away without looking back at the tree. The hole behind the peg may contain a wad of human hair, dried…

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Verbena Lore

Good Witches Homestead

COMMON NAME: verbena
V. bipinnatifida-light purple perennial: 3 inches tall. V. rigida-purplish blue perennial; 1 foot tall. V. rigida-‘Flame’-red flowers from June through frost. V. canadensis-rose pink flowers from June through frost. V. venosa-purplish blue flowers; to 1 foot. V. hybrida-‘Amethyst’-lavender blue; annual. V.b.-‘Blaze’-scarlet; annual. V.b.-‘Sangria’-wine colored; heat tolerant; annual; spreads 1 to 1 1/2 feet.
BLOOMS: summer
TYPE: annual and perennial
DESCRIPTION: Low-growing verbena blooms profusely and adds great color to the summer perennial bed. Different species vary in height from 3 to 12 inches and in a spread from 12 to 24 inches. Flowers are small and borne on short stalks; the foliage is bright green and continuously attractive. Verbenas come in white and bright shades of red, pink, blue, and purple.
CULTIVATION: Full sun and well-drained soil are necessary conditions for growing…

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It is common practice in this world for the winners of war to write their version of history. This is also true when it comes to political, social and religious structures. Once a civilization is conquered, everything about that civilization is replaced, renamed or discredited. All the wars that have been fought on this planet, it is no wonder we can’t remember anything about our history. In this post I will bring back the true meaning of the Deity, Baal.

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Ozark Encyclopedia – O – Onion

Mountain Man Traditional Healing

Onion – Allium cepa

Parts used: bulb

Traditional uses: Syrup of chopped onions taken for colds. Used to destroy germs because of a volatile oil in roots. Onion placed in a sick room to draw fever out.

“Antiseptic, diuretic. A roasted Onion is a useful application to tumours or earache. The juice made into a syrup is good for colds and coughs. Hollands gin, in which Onions have been macerated, is given as a cure for gravel and dropsy.” ~Grieve MH

Red onion on bedpost for a cold – “A big red onion tied to a bedpost is said to prevent the occupants of the bed from catching cold. A famous politician in Arkansas had an onion fastened to his bedpost as recently as 1937. When I asked him about this he laughed rather sheepishly. ‘That’s just one of Maw’s notions,’ he said, referring to his mother-in-law. ‘She lives with…

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Ozark Encyclopedia – O – Oak

Mountain Man Traditional Healing

Oak – Quercus

Parts used: bark, leaf

Traditional uses: Astringent, antiseptic, bark and leaves can be used to treat diarrhea and dysentery, can be used in poultices and to help stop bleeding.

“The astringent effects of the Oak were well known to the Ancients, by whom different parts of the tree were used, but it is the bark which is now employed in medicine. Its action is slightly tonic, strongly astringent and antiseptic. It has a strong astringent bitter taste, and its qualities are extracted both by water and spirit. The odour is slightly aromatic. Like other astringents, it has been recommended in agues and haemorrhages, and is a good substitute for Quinine in intermittent fever, especially when given with Chamomile flowers. It is useful in chronic diarrhoea and dysentery, either alone or in conjunction with aromatics. A decoction is made from 1 OZ. of bark in a quart of…

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