Saturday, June 18, 2011

Matching the Seasons

Last 2009, my BFF Marcel Milliam and I were talking about the adaptation of the Western Wiccan practice to the culture and magickal practices of the Ilonggo people. One of the topics that we discussed were the Sabbats. Marz is not really into practicing them, he said that there are only 2 celebration that he really takes time on practicing- Samhain and Imbolc.

Anyway, We started brainstorming on the Sabbats. We coined names for them and match them with the existing climate and cultural celebrations of Iloilo City. We came up with the following...

Tigtulugnaw (Yule)- December is the start of our "Tigtulugnaw" (Tag-lamig) and true to its name, this is the time that the wind starts to become really chilly and cold.

Pangalayo (Imbolc)- as this festival coincides with the feast of Candelaria "Nuestra Senora dela Candelaria" (Our Lady of Candles), patroness of Jaro, we find this necessary to include this on the list. We named it "Pangalayo", derived from the vernacular word "Kalayo" which means fire.

Tigpanalingsing (Ostara)- This time is where seedlings starts to grow... I really can't explain why, but during this time there are a lot of obvious changes in the world... the seeds and plants grow faster and in numbers. You could feel the energy of the world bursting out, that's why we call "Tigpanalingsing", which means sprouting in the Hiligaynon Language.

Tigbalangaw (Litha)- Litha is a very confusing festival, anyway, since we are trying to adapt the celebration for Iloilo, we named it "Tigbalangaw"- from the word "Balangaw" or rainbow. It's translated as the "time of rainbows".

Panubason (Lammas)- the time of harvest. "Patubas" means harvest and we can really observe this during this time. The crops are harvested and storage is full.

Tigkalanay (Mabon)- From the work "Makanay" or calm. So this translates to the "time of Calm".

Paghanduraw (Samhain)- "Paghanduraw" means "to remember" from the Hiligaynon word Handuraw or "remember".

As a Wiccan, the Sabbats are not just applicable to the Western countries where there are four seasons. I respect friends and fellow practitioners who are not observing them. My practice, however, dictates that I need to celebrate all since it is the Earth's natural cycle, we are in one way or another affected by the energies that these changes bring. I am not looking at this in a geographical way (Directional Elements/Correspondences will be discussed soon) since the Sabbats (especially the Solstices and Equinoxes) are global phenomenon and it affects all. It does not mean that we wont be affected by the Summer Solstice or the Vernal Equinox because we too are a part of the Earth. We need to talk about energies here, and thus look at the larger picture. We need to remember that Solstices and Equinoxes that we celebrate are not really bound to any location, right? These are part of the cycle that the world is constantly experiencing- Summer and Winter Solstice, for example happens when the sun reaches its northernmost and southernmost extremes and these movements still affects us whether it's summer here or not.

I would still love to integrate the Sabbats with the cultural and magickal practices of an Ilonggo. =)

Just my opinion...

Friday, June 17, 2011

Annie- Verse-Harry Mee-Gy

It was February 16 when I first saw you. I was really in Bisaya "Maulaw!" since you are young and obviously good looking- Two adjectives which I am not. After a few months corresponding on FB and 2 days after we met, we were together.

We've been through a lot of things... and sometimes I would really think that we are the exact opposite. You are childish, I am too- but now I am forced to act mature since only one in the relationship is allowed to be childish. You are care free, I am the responsible one. You love to eat and you don't get fat. I don't eat much and I get fat. I like Ice Cream but you love them- especially Selecta Hersheys' Reese. I love to read books, you don't. You love Willie Revillame, I don't like him. I love to eat veggies but you despise them. You love fish, I don't eat it so often. You love ROSE, I love AIon (but now you like it too). You love your hair, well, I just lost mine.

Though we have a long list of differences, we have similarities too. We both love to stay home and watch Naruto and X-men Animated. We both love anime. Both love movies- I love 3d but you hate the 3d visor. We both want to travel and explore new things. One thing really binds us though, we both love Coco Bread and Coke.

We had a lot of bumps along the way too, we argued almost every week and we reconcile after that- I think this makes the bond stronger... I think. I always ask for your explanation- you just mumble and most of the time skulk and keep quiet. You always interrogate me- where I am? Who's with me? You always check my phone and it's one of the things that I am not really comfortable since I don't let anyone touch my things, I suppose it is one of the burden of a don't really have a choice.

Sometimes our discussion becomes so intense that we always ended up crying on each other's shoulder. Remember the first "Physical Argument" we had last week. I promised not to do it again. I rarely do that and If I do that's when i am really, really angry. I apologize.

We discussed about our future too and you have a lot of plans. I don't. I am happy and contented here in Davao, yet you wan't to explore. That's also one of the perks of being young.

It's the 18th of June- exactly 2.24 AM- (checked the clock as I type this line) and I want to thank you for being there for me. Four months is exactly not that long, but for me it is. I know we experience turbulence in this relationship, but hey--- that's normal right? I needed the support and an ear to listen and you provided it. I really appreciate how you care for me (especially when i got sick) and your being honest to your parents about us- that is way beyond my expectation... so I promise to meet your parents on July 2 or 3.

I really thank you for the support and love you shared with me... Love you Bhebhe Koko!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Celebrity Witches

There are lot of Witches in literature, on TV and in movies. We have Samantha from Bewitched, Nancy from the Craft, the Owen Sisters from Practical Magic, Willow from Buffy, the Halliwell Sisters from Charmed, Merrick from Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles. Lately, we have Bonnie Bonnet from Vampire Diaries, Cassey Blake from the Secret Circle and Moira Bryne from Sweep and Hermoine Granger from Harry Potter. Though these characters are merely fictional, we cannot deny that one way or another, it also influenced some of the witches to even step on the Path of the Wise. There is one thing that we need to remember though- how to differentiate reality from fantasy.

Some of the neophyte witches maybe drawn to the allure of witchcraft because of what they see in the movies or on TV and what they read on novels. After all, who doesn't want to move things with their minds, shoot lightning from their finger tips, stop time, control the weather, and even just stirring their coffee with magick.

However, this is too far from reality. Though there are people that can possible control fire, this act alone would take a lot of energy. Weather work would also take a lot of time to even move a cloud or make rain fall. Twitch your nose to make the entire kitchen clean, is that even possible?

Magick is not as simple as waiving your hand, shouting something in Latin and *poof you'll get what you want. Magick would take more than that. For me working a spell requires study and preparation. It requires correspondences- proper hour, moon phase, herbs, stones, candles and incenses. Though a lot of people might disagree with me and would probably say that weaving a spell does not require all of these tools and would only need their mind, planning your spells are quite important. If doing a spell without tools can be successful, how much more with proper and correct materials and correspondences. This fuels the spells to be more effective as it gives more energy to the spell. The more energy to fuel the spell, the easier for a trained mind to mold these energies and concentrate them to achieve your goal.

Everything holds energy and if these energies blend with each other for a common goal, then it is a better way to achieve our goal. If using your mind without other tools could give you an 80% result, how much more if we use the additional energies produced by the herbs, the time and the planets, the moon... then probably we could raise the success rate of our spells to 100%.

We need to remember that the abilities of the TV Witches are exaggerated. It takes more than a flick of finger, a Latin word, a twitch of your nose to alter reality. We are talking about energies here. Each ingredient, material and tool hold their own energy and contribute something to the entire picture. We just need to understand that bending reality to the will of the witch is quite difficult. To untangle the weave of "normalcy" and insert our own will would take a lot of focus and concentration. Though there are some ways to make things easier, it still needs training and experience to perfectly cast spells.

If you are interested to study magick, you need dedication and perseverance. Calling yourself a Witch does not make you one.

- photo from the internet-