The Medicine We Need

Ceremony and Ritual

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e need to make sure we have all the medicine we need.”

My husband tells me this offhandedly, on his way out of the kitchen with the two boys, the screen door shutting firmly behind him. I open the cabinet, what looks for all the world like an altar to health and convenience and choices. Cough syrups and lozenges, prescription medication to manage my chronic asthma, tonics and tinctures in strange brown glass bottles sitting side by side the Tylenol and Motrin. This is, after all, the medicine cabinet of someone experienced with specialized medicines for serious chronic illness – but it is also the cabinet of a witch. I would expect some dark glass bottles and dried bundled of herbs and homemade balms and I am not disappointed.

I stare at the shelves running through the lists of things a family of four, with two active young children, might need to see them through the Winter. I know I can go to the store to pick up whatever I don’t have, but I don’t take that knowledge for granted the way that I did before Covid, before March of this year, before going to the grocery store became a fraught affair.

How to know, I wonder? How does one know what is needed? The irony of a professional diviner asking how one knows what is needed, how one knows anything really, is not lost on me. I have an answer. I wrote it down in my first book. Pay attention. That is what I have to do, what we have to do, ever and always, pay attention. I look again and wonder aloud: what is the medicine we need?

Candles flicker on the Ancestor altar and the air is full of the golden spice scent of marigolds. Soon I’ll add the sugar skulls. Soon we will write the names of the Beloved Dead on each one. There is one medicine we need, a medicine easily forgotten: the act of remembering. Remembering our Beloved Dead, our lineage of blood and choice, and all of the tangles and gorgeous colors it contains, the stories of our Ancestors.

My gaze drifts over to the charm bag that contains the first locks of hair from one of my baby’s head. We need the medicine of memory and also the medicine of possibility, of dreams, of aspirations. Those are carried in the words I write, the seeds we plant, the sparkle of a gorgeous boy’s eye when he wins the game, and the salty tears of defeat when the day was hard.

I tiptoe out into the garden under the waxing moon, sit on the wooden swing with my cup of steaming coffee and watch as the little opossum we rescued earlier this year noses about in the plants and then scurries up his favorite tree. When he was brought into the kitchen, furry body hanging out of our proud dog’s mouth, I thought for sure he was dead. Then I remembered that opossums are quite good at playing dead. Later that day I watched him move, thinking, mmm, surely his back is broken, this looks bad. A day of recuperation at our local Wildlife center, prayers to St. Francis, and now he is rummaging about the garden as if nothing happened. Resiliency then, that too is a medicine that we need to carry with us through the Winter.

This year marked my 40th birthday. I rang it in by standing in line for 4 hours so that both myself and my beloved could vote. A group of women stood behind me. They all wore black shirts with silk screened lace collars. The shirts said: “We are Ruthless” in a nod of respect to Justice Ginsburg’s recent death. They brought doughnuts to the party, knowing it would be a while before we could cast our vote. Commitment to the possibility of something better. There is medicine we need always, and with plenty of back stock.

The Full Moon is on Halloween. Every elementary school aged child’s heart swells as this undeniable, unbelievable, too perfect to be true, fact. It is proof among the dead grass, sticky caramel-kissed fingers, and October pumpkin-filled air, that magic exists. In this year of all years, that too needs to be carried forward. The magic of an October Full Moon hanging low in the sky as the goblins and ghosts come out for tricks and treats while witches wait for the new year to be ushered in.

Now I’m paying attention. Now I see what we need and I know what to do. In addition to the tried and true medicines of the body, I’ll gather up some further things: Remembering, Stories, Dreaming, Hoping, Resilience, Recovery, Commitment, Betterment, Magic. Pour them into brown glass bottles, braid them together while the leaves are still supple, make a balm with them for chapped hands and lips and souls. I’ll tuck them into the cabinets in between the pain relievers and the thermometers. Now we have the medicines we need.

magic, miracles: receive my lunar letters

ARRIVING on full moons each month.

Star Stories: November 2020

Ceremony and Ritual

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strology for November 2020

Note for November: The big news for this month is right at the beginning with some truly wacky election day astrology. Mercury is up to all kinds of antics on election day and it is likely that snags, delays, and cries of no fair from both sides will be in the air by the evening and the following day. Keep a cool head and stay out of the drama for the best results. Uranus and Neptune get active near the end of the month giving us all things to be thankful for!

11/1: Daylight Savings Time Begins – Fall Back!

11/3: Voting in the United States for the 2020 Presidential Election – GO VOTE!!!

11/3: Mercury square Pluto. Not the greatest astro for election day here in the US as this square can encourage harsh behavior, manipulation, and dodgy tactics on behalf of all competitors who really want to win. Secrets and lies may abound.
Ask: What is really going on?

11/3: Mercury square Saturn. More difficulties on election day because this aspect can have things grinding to a halt and even though Mercury goes direct on this day there may be technical issues that create delays or unclear results.
Ask: What does the law want us to know?

11/3: Mercury square Jupiter. Watch out for extravagant gestures and promises that cannot possibly be delivered on. At best this is an idealistic transit that shows up what is possible. At worst it is a hangover we all recover from.
Ask: Where do I need to be more moderate?

11/3: Mercury goes Direct!!!

11/8: Waning Quarter Moon at 16 degrees Leo, 7:46 AM. A reminder that this is a great time to banish: https://brianasaussy.com/what-are-you-really-banishing/
Ask: What pride needs to be vanquished?

11/10: Mercury enters Scorpio. After it’s long retrograde Mercury returns to the lair of the Scorpion and once again our words can carry bite and sting. Mercury in Scorpio encourages us to communicate about deep and meaningful issues and we do that most effectively when we also remember to be kind.
Ask: What deep conversation am I ready to have?

11/12: Jupiter and Pluto Conjunction. This pairing occurs every 13 years. It is sometimes referred to as the “mogul” pairing and carries a lot of potential for creating deep wealth and money magic.
Ask: Where am I ready to deepen my wealth and abundance?

11/13: Mars goes Direct!!!

11/14: New Moon at 23 degrees Scorpio, 11:07 PM. Here are Four Ways to Honor the New Moon just in case you missed them: https://brianasaussy.com/4-ways-honor-new-moon/
Ask: What shadow am I ready to explore?

11/16: Venus square Jupiter. This square brings optimism, happiness, and a great benefit to those who align themselves with that energy.
Ask: What possibility am I ready to entertain?

11/17: Mercury opposed Uranus. This opposition can bring in brilliant insights and ideas but can also have your head so high up in the clouds that you forget to consider and attend to practical matters.
Ask: What brilliant insight is making itself known?

11/19: Venus square Saturn. This aspect brings about sadness, difficulties and a focus on loss. Focusing on where you lack and are not enough can go hand in hand with this astro weather as can a financial limit or set back.
Ask: Where do I need to forgive myself?

11/21: Venus enters Scorpio. When Venus enters Scorpio our sex and intimate lives become deeper and more important. This astrology can lead, on the one hand to deep healing through erotic relationships and love but on the other hand, it can lead to cray-cray obsessions and fixations that are nothing but bad news.
Ask: What intimacy am I ready to explore?

11/21: Waxing Quarter at 0 degrees Pisces, 10:45 PM. This is the perfect time to brush up on your divination practice! https://brianasaussy.com/teaching/20-question-tarot/
Ask: What does right relationship with my intuition look and feel like?

11/21: Sun enters Sagittarius 2:40 PM
Ask: What am I able to teach?

11/23: Mercury trine Neptune. This is a gentle day when rest, dwelling on something beautiful or applying your thoughts and energy to a creative or charitable project would be a very good thing.
Ask: Where can I help?

11/27: Venus opposed to Uranus. This aspect might bring a delightful surprise when it comes to love or money.
Ask: What unexpected gift will I say yes to?

11/28: Neptune goes Direct!!!

11/30: Full Moon + Lunar Eclipse at 8 degrees Gemini, 3:30 AM. Some ideas for how to work with the Full Moon can be found here: https://brianasaussy.com/how-to-honor-the-full-moon/ and here: https://brianasaussy.com/six-months-of-magic-every-full-moon/
Ask: What words matter most to me?

11/30: Lunar Eclipse at 8 degrees Gemini at 3:30 AM
Ask: What keeps me from articulating my message?    November November

magic, miracles: receive my lunar letters

ARRIVING on full moons each month.

HOW Do We Honor our Ancestors?

Ceremony and Ritual

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t’s the final day of our exploration into the practice of Honoring Our Ancestors and today is all about the gritty details, the HOW.

So, you know what Ancestor you want to work with, you have found an object or item that brings them to mind for you, and maybe you have set that in s specific place where it won’t be disturbed. Now, what do you do?

Here are a number of different ways that you can begin engaging with your Beloved Dead:

• Building an altar, shrine, or house for your Ancestors. This is probably the most common way to begin developing a relationship with them and it does not have to be elaborate. You can simply set out a fresh glass of water by a picture or object you associate with your Ancestor and light some incense as a way to begin.

• Offering favored foods, drinks, clothing, objects, and flowers

• Representing the Ancestor with images, their handwriting, objects they treasured in life, graveyard dirt from their grave, ashes from their body, or other personal concerns

• Keeping a clean home — it is widely agreed that the Ancestors do not like to travel to or hang out in messy, cluttered spaces.

• Working with scent/incense — many cultures agree that of the five primary senses after death only our sense of smell remains fully intact. This is why pungent flowers like marigolds are used to mark out an Ancestral altar because they have a strong fragrance. Incense may be used for the same purpose. When working with scent think of it as building a road to the altar that the Ancestors may follow

• Party at the gravesite! Bring the favorite foods and drinks of your Ancestors to their gravesite where you can sit and have dinner with them!

• In some cultures the Ancestors are understood to remain in/at the altar or shrine all the time, in which case incense may be burned as a regular offering

• Food and drink should either be consumed by the living after remaining on the altar for a set amount of time or it should be discarded

• Consider the altar space of co-creation between yourself and your Ancestors. The primary objective is to honor them but you also want to use items that please you and put you in the right frame of mind to work with them.

• DO NOT offer alcohol to Ancestors who are alcoholics. DO NOT offer chemical substances (like nicotine) to Ancestors who had an addiction to that substance.

And remember, if you are beginning to explore a relationship with your Ancestors for the first time, it is perfectly appropriate to work with ONE at the time.

Now I know that there are a lot of suggestions and directions to go in with this work. You might be feeling a bit overwhelm and when you start receiving signs and communiques from your Ancestors that may leave you feeling ALL the feels.

This is why it’s a really good idea to have a relationship with a Go-Between.

A Go-Between is literally that. A Holy Helper who mediates between one thing and another – in this case the Living and the Dead.

Developing a relationship with a Go-Between gives you a place to begin focusing on your Ancestor work and also provides an extra layer of protection to you and your household as you begin this work.

There are many different Holy Helpers that are appropriate Go-Betweens to work with and I taught at length about this practice in the first week of Story Threads – which opens for registration today! You can learn more right here.

magic, miracles: receive my lunar letters

ARRIVING on full moons each month.

Hearth and Home Vol. 23 ~ How Diamonds are Formed

Ceremony and Ritual

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lessed New Moon in Libra, Miracles! diamonds

First and foremost, in honor of relationship-driven Libra, I created a new online community for all of us! If you have not yet checked out the Sacred Arts Academy please do! Joining is 100% free. Your request to join will have to be approved by me but I check in with the Academy pretty much every day so I’ll be happy to let you in! This is a community hosted on Mighty Networks and I am pretty impressed with their entire set up. One of the big challenges for me and our community of Soulful Seekers is that a lot of what we want to discuss is private, deep, and potent. My people have never been super comfortable sharing these aspects of themselves on the usual social media subjects but the Sacred Arts Academy feels different. People feel able to share in a safe space. And…it’s really pretty! Join right here.

One of the amazing things about the Sacred Arts community is that all of my courses and teachings are able to be housed there as well. I experimented with running my first course through this platform during the first full week of the month with about 60 other intrepid souls as we went Gathering the Bones with Santa Muerte. This was a week long training in Ancestor work, including some intermediate and advanced techniques and it was powerful, fun, and I learned a ton! That’s one of the main reasons why I teach – because I learn SO much along the way! We are gathering for the second and final week of training in November and we will be working with Hansel and Gretel as our guiding tale – I cannot wait! My students really responded beautifully to the new course design, layout, and dedicated forum – this stuff might sound boring to some of you but if you are running a web-based business or a magic’preneur then you know that finding the right platform is HUGE. I’m so glad I found this one!

In the middle of my teaching week, David and I celebrated 14 years of marriage and 17 years of togetherness! Thank you all for the incredibly sweet notes and congratulations. I wake up every day and feel so deeply blessed to have this man as my partner, helpmate, and best beloved! We kept our celebration low-key this year – both of the boys were in school – so mom and dad got to hang out together, have lunch together al fresco and without interruption, and then immerse ourselves in some serious big picture thinking, scheming, and dreaming. All I can say about that is…EXCITING THINGS ARE COMING!!!

Next, I celebrated my 40th(!!!) birthday first and foremost by VOTING. Early voting in Texas kicked off on my birthday this year and being the astrologer that I am, I wanted to vote BEFORE Mercury actually went retrograde. My husband and I are PROUD to be Ridin’ with Biden and Harris. We masked up, made our voices heard, and then took off to spend the rest of the day in frivolity and fun. Thanks too for all of the birthday wishes – ya’ll are the best!

This New Moon sees me walking along the edge of the shore down at the Gulf Coast, speaking to the Mother Ocean, and listening to what she has to say. It’s the perfect liminal place to be in a liminal year. Despite the awfulness of 2020, turning 40 this year feels very appropriate. Those of us who are were born in 1980 are a liminal group – the last year of GenX or the first year of the Millenials depending on who you talk to. Most of my friends are older than me and my husband is older so personally, I identify more with Gen X but there are also plenty of aspects of the Millenial generation that I appreciate – I feel like their conscience-raising awareness is the perfect pairing with Gen X’s wryness and cynicism. Most of all, I think those of us born this year can be translators between two generations and that is a needed thing.

I feel that 2020 is a year that will go into the history books not as the annus horibilis – the most horrible year, but rather as a year that made diamonds out of so many of us. We have been under such pressure in so many parts of the world – economic, political, legal, ethical, medical, etc, etc, that many of us have had no choice but to become harder, more resilient, more brilliant, and perhaps most importantly of all – more clear.

October is a blue moon month, so you will hear from me again before the month is out as we celebrate the Full Moon in Taurus on Samhain, October 31st. As an October baby, I LOVE Halloween and typically we have a big fiesta at our house celebrating this day and the season of the Dead that it ushers in. This year it will be different. We will be out on the land I grew up on, there will be bonfires and candy, the sweet scent of copal burning and offerings for the faeries, there will be sugar skulls and white bones, and blessings for and from our Beloved Dead. Back at home, my front steps will have some candy and books available for those who do venture out. It’s not the Halloween I was hoping for or expecting, but it does call back so many memories from my youth as this entire year has done.

And then the Wheel will turn and the cycle will begin anew.

From our family to yours ~ shine on, sweet Miracles!

xoxo diamonds diamonds diamonds diamonds diamonds

magic, miracles: receive my lunar letters

ARRIVING on full moons each month.

Star Stories: October 2020

Ceremony and Ritual

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strology for October 2020

Note for October: October will be an extra special month this year. A spooky Mercury Retrograde starts on October 13th (which also just happens to be mah birthday!) and the month opens and closes with Full Moons making the second Full Moon (on Halloween no less!) a Blue Moon.  A couple of square with the Sun make things tricky but a sweet Jupiter Venus trine smooths things out. It is a balance of tricks and treats and an excellent time to remember to care for our Ancestors!

10/1: Full Moon at 9 degrees Aries at 4:05 PM. Some ideas for how to work with the Full Moon can be found here: https://brianasaussy.com/how-to-honor-the-full-moon/ and here: https://brianasaussy.com/six-months-of-magic-every-full-moon/
Ask: What core aspects of myself do I wish to honor?

10/2: Venus enters Virgo. Now is the time to be devoted to what matters most. Check the perfectionist tendencies and choose instead to put your efforts into wholeness and health!
Ask: What devotion is calling my name?

10/4: Pluto Direct!!!

10/7: Mercury opposed to Uranus. Anxiety and tension are at an all-time high and an unexpected surprise may add to the excitement.
Ask: What calms me now?

10/9: Waning Quarter Moon at 27 degrees Cancer, 7:40 PM. A reminder that this is a great time to banish: https://brianasaussy.com/what-are-you-really-banishing/
Ask: What family/tribal ties am I ready to sever?

10/9: Mars square Pluto. This square creates tension and possible aggression. Stay safe and be smart.
Ask: Where do I need to exercise more caution?

10/10: Venus trine Uranus. Expect favorable news and surprises in the areas of love and money.
Ask: What surprise would I welcome in the area of relationships or finances?

10/11: Sun square Jupiter. This day reminds us to go for the gold but also to keep realistic expectations about what we (and others) can be expected to achieve.
Ask: Where would my dream benefit from a reality check?

10/13: Mercury Retrograde begins. Retrograde starts at 8:05 PM in Scorpio, moves into Libra on October 27th and ends on the 3rd at 11:50 AM.
Ask: What elements of my lineage are ready to be re-balanced?

10/13: Sun opposed to Mars. Disagreements, disappointments, and difficulties surface on this day and competitions can turn nasty.
Ask: How can I collaborate instead of competing?

10/15: Sun square Pluto. This leads to power trips, personal crises, and behaviors that are not supportive, to say the least. Instead, let the sun illuminate the shadows.
Ask: What do my depths want me to see about myself?

10/16: New Moon at 23 degrees Libra at 2:31 PM. Here are Four Ways to Honor the New Moon just in case you missed them: https://brianasaussy.com/4-ways-honor-new-moon/
Ask: What new relationship am I ready to form?

10/18: Sun square Saturn has us once again worried about time, aging, and generally being afraid. Instead, work with the energy to supercharge your discipline.
Ask: What does my pursuit of excellence teach me?

10/19: Mars square Jupiter. Fantastic day for luck, business, and seizing an opportunity.
Ask: What opportunity am I ready to seize?

10/19: Mercury opposed Uranus. Expect flashes of brilliance and the inability to stop thinking. Carry a notebook and write those ideas down.
Ask: What thoughts are asking for my attention now?

10/19: Venus trine Jupiter. This is a blessed day full of good luck, cheer, and abundance – especially in the areas of love and money.
Ask: What blessings am I ready to receive?

10/21: Venus trine Pluto brings deep intimacy and/or romantic obsessions.
Ask: What relationship do I want to take deeper?

10/22: Sun enters Scorpio 6:00 PM
Ask: What are the blessings from my broken places?

10/23: Waxing Quarter at 0 degrees Aquarius, 8:23 AM. This is the perfect time to brush up on your divination practice! https://brianasaussy.com/teaching/20-question-tarot/
Ask: What message am I ready to amplify?

10/24: Venus trine Saturn. This aspect is all about commitments and being involved for the long haul in both matters of love and money. Good day to make an investment or a marriage proposal!
Ask: Where am I ready to invest?

10/27: Venus moves into Libra. Love, relationships, marriage, and partnerships of all kinds take center stage for the next few weeks.
Ask: Who and what am I partners with?

10/31: Full Moon at 8 degrees Taurus at 9:49 PM – Halloween/Samhain/Blue Moon. Some ideas for how to work with the Full Moon can be found here: https://brianasaussy.com/how-to-honor-the-full-moon/ and here: https://brianasaussy.com/six-months-of-magic-every-full-moon/
Ask: What brings me stability?

10/31: Sun opposed to Uranus. Expect a pleasant surprise – hopefully, all treats and no tricks!
Ask: Where are things ready to be shaken up?  October 

magic, miracles: receive my lunar letters

ARRIVING on full moons each month.

Star Stories: September 2020

Ceremony and Ritual

A

strology for September 2020

Note for September: The social season will start buzzing in September. There are a few oppositions this month that will create some problems and static but also sign changes – including Venus’ movement into Leo that bring a good deal of blessings and opportunity. Jupiter also brings us one of the luckiest days of the year!

9/1: Mercury trine Pluto. This is a time when communication gets deep.
Ask: Where do my words need to go deeper?

9/2: Full Moon at 10 degrees Pisces, 12:22 AM. Some ideas for how to work with the Full Moon can be found here: https://brianasaussy.com/how-to-honor-the-full-moon/ and here: https://brianasaussy.com/six-months-of-magic-every-full-moon/
Ask: What am I ready to heal?

9/2: Venus opposed to Saturn. This is a tough aspect that can have us focusing on love gone wrong and sad stories. You can align with this in a more positive way by affirming or re-affirming your commitment to healthy romantic and financial habits.
Ask: Where would I like to recommit myself?

9/3: Mercury trine Saturn. This is good astrology for thinking through serious or difficult problems and arriving at elegant conclusions.
Ask: What needs to be carefully thought through?

9/4: Venus square Mars. Tough day for love and matters of the heart. This aspect can lead us all to pick fights and be extra aggressive.
Ask: Where can I practice kindness?

9/5: Mercury moves into Libra. Communication becomes fair, balanced, and has a helpful dose of charm and flirtation thrown in to boot!
Ask: Where can my words brings more balance?

9/6: Venus moves into Leo. The focus now is on luxury, fun, good times, and creative work!
Ask: What creative projects are in need of love?

9/9: Mars Retrograde begins at 5:22 PM in Aries and stations direct on November 13th at 6:36 PM. Review your energy levels, fitness habits, and health routines.
Ask: Where do I need to optimize my independence?

9/9: Sun trine Jupiter. This is a wonderful day for good luck, fortune, and general blessings. Asking for a favor or seeking a promotion gets a thumbs up on this day!
Ask: Where am I ready to take a chance?

9/10: Waning Quarter Moon at 18 degrees Gemini, 4:26 AM. A reminder that this is a great time to banish: https://brianasaussy.com/what-are-you-really-banishing/
Ask: What distractions do I need to remove?

9/11: Sun opposed to Neptune. Thinking and feeling can be fuzzy on this day. Letting yourself rest and especially watching your immune system are good ideas.
Ask: Where am I ready to rest?

9/12: Jupiter Direct!!!

9/15: Venus square Uranus can bring surprises in the areas of love and money so be on the lookout for those.
Ask: Where has my money gotten stagnant?

9/17: New Moon at 25 degrees Virgo at 6:00 AM. Here are Four Ways to Honor the New Moon just in case you missed them: https://brianasaussy.com/4-ways-honor-new-moon/
Ask: What do I want to plan for?

9/20: Mercury square Pluto. This aspect brings out the sting in all conversations. Watch out for overtly or passive-aggressive behaviors in yourselves and others.
Ask: How can I say it with kindness?

9/22: Sun enters Libra (Fall Equinox) 8:31 AM — Fall Equinox
Ask: What relationships am I devoted to?

9/23: Waxing First Quarter at 1 degree Capricorn, 8:55 PM. This is the perfect time to brush up on your divination practice! https://brianasaussy.com/teaching/20-question-tarot/
Ask: Where am I ready to build mastery and expertise?

9/27: Mercury enters Scorpio. Conversations get deeper, more raw, and have potentially more bite to them when Mercury hangs out in Scorpio.
Ask: What words are able to heal?

9/29: Saturn Direct!!!

magic, miracles: receive my lunar letters

ARRIVING on full moons each month.

Pluto as a Holy Helper

Ceremony and Ritual

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is story begins, as so many creation do, with a game of chance – the drawing of lots. Jupiter received the realms of heaven and earth, Neptune claimed the Ocean’s depths and Pluto, Pluto received the realm beneath all that is hidden and unseen, all that belongs to the Dead.

Here then is his first teaching: he rules through service, not mastery. His fealty is to the dead and the fallen, his realm their place of safety and sanctuary. Call on him then when you would speak to your own beloved dead, he will aid you in coming to know your ancestors.

He serves what others fear, what the living cannot know or seem, and so we can ask for his favor when we are attempting to understand the unseen and the unknown. He reveals the hidden ways and hidden wealth.

Miners and those who love and work with minerals, metals and gems should know him, for they all fall under his custodianship. At the height of his influence he was understood to be so powerful that even saying his name was too much. Leave an offering of honeycomb under the cover of night and head back to your family.

He is best known as the abductor and rapist of Persephone but the oldest tales weave a different story – there was a forbidden love there, one that demanded its participants to partake of both worlds – that of the living and that of the Dead.

We must know when and make space for him if we are to inhabit our full power and potential for transformation. For it is only when we know of death that we are truly able to appreciate life.

magic, miracles: receive my lunar letters

ARRIVING on full moons each month.