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    Gems of the Goddess

    Bastet – Egyptian Cat Goddess The Egyptian goddess Bastet, also known as Bast, Ubasti and Baset, has been worshipped since the Second Dynasty. In the third millenium BC, she was depicted as a priestess with the head of a lion. Later, in the first millenium BC, with the popularity of the house cat, her lion’s head often transformed into that of a cat. Though her physical image differed, her demeanor did not. She remained both tame and wild, gentle and fierce. Daughter of the sun god Ra, she is also known as Lady of Flame and Eye of Ra. She is wife to Ptah, god of carpenters and shipbuilders, and…

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    Gems of the Goddess

    Aurora, Goddess of Dawn   Born at the dawn of time, the Roman goddess Aurora, known as Eos to the Greeks, rules over rejuvenation and renewal. Daughter of the Titan Hyperion (Bringer of Light), and granddaughter of Gaia (Earth) and Ouranos (the Heavens), she holds universal power as a direct descendant of the primal elements.   It is said her forearms and fingers shimmer in rose colored hues as she sweeps across the heavens, opening the gates for her brother, the sun god Helios, to guide his golden horse-drawn carriage into the sky while her sister, the moon goddess Selene, retreats into slumber.   Aurora has fallen in love many…

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    Gems of the Goddess

    Frigga, the All-Mother In the Norse pantheon, the goddess Frigga, whose name means “beloved one”,  rules over hearth and home, love, birth, renewal, motherhood, and wisdom. So important in status was she, it is her name that was given to our modern Friday. She is the wife of the All-Father Odin, by which she has two sons; Baldr, the god of light and poetry, and Hod, the blind god of darkness and winter. As the Queen All-Mother, she is the only other deity, aside from Odin himself, who is permitted to sit upon the great high seat, Hlidskjalf, which looks out onto the vast universe. As she is a sky…

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    Gems of the Goddess

    Skaði, Goddess of Hunting and Winter    Hers is the name in which Scandinavia derived its own. Daughter of the frost giant Thiazi, Skadi rules over winter, mountains, forest, game animals, justice and independence. She is also known as goddess of the hunt, as it is her gift which brought the use and skill of archery to hunters. It is said she is tall and thin, with ivory skin, raven black hair and deep blue eyes. She travels over ice and snow covered lands on skis, a bow at her side, and always in the company of wolves. As a dark goddess she is known as Queen of Shadows, the…

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    Gems of the Goddess

    Hel, Goddess of the Underworld The Norse goddess Hel is one of the most misunderstood goddesses of all time, largely due to the incorrect association with her name and the Judeo-Christian mythology’s realm known as “hell.”  Through this misconstrued association, Hel is often represented as an evil entity looming in the darkness to steal lost souls. This is far from truth. The youngest of three children born to the god Loki and the giantess Angrboda, she and her brothers, Fenrir the wolf, and Jormundgand, the Midgard Serpent, lived with their mother in Jotunheimr, home of the giants. Having received prophecies that these unique siblings would cause great mischief and disaster…

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    Musings From the Mossy Trail

      Autumn Musings     There’s something very magical about autumn. Perhaps it’s the myriad of Nature’s colors; rustic oranges, hushed reds, and tinted greens. Or the faint whispers and soothing sounds that carry on the cool morning breeze, sending messages of times gone by. Promises of what is yet to come.   This is the season when my yearning to live deep within the forest is the greatest. To transform the siding and shingles of my home into a mystical stone cottage with thatched roof, where oak scented smoke billows from a great chimney. Lush, plentiful gardens of autumn splendor would grow in my woodland dwelling. Carrots, kale, winter…

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    Musings from the Mossy Trail

      Dryads: Wood Nymphs of the Forest “The Dryad rejoiced in her life, and rejoiced in the sunshine, and the singing of the birds; but she was most rejoiced at human voices; she understood the language of men as well as she understood that of animals. ” —Hans Christian Anderson     Purely a gift to humanity and the earth alike, trees fill our lives with beauty, can be seen as a symbol of our own spirituality with deep roots and fortitude, and greatly aid in our health. One mature leaf provides as much oxygen as ten people inhale in a year. They also have the ability to filter chemicals…

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    Musings From the Mossy Trail

      The Wonder of Fae   In July the earth is lush and green, the air thick with possibilities. Gardens are in full bloom, the sun glistens off lakes and rivers, and in that special place where poetry meets the soul, we find those enchanting creatures who capture our hearts and imagination, the fae.   Through myth, stories and folklore, which has been passed down over hundreds of years, we learn that there are many species of fae. They may appear in human or animal form, or a mix thereof, as streams of light, cascades of glimmer, or in any other form they wish to present themselves. William Butler Yeats, in…

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    Musings From the Mossy Trail

    Yarrow: For Health, Love and Wisdom To bring to me my true loves’ name To heal my wounds and ease my pain For courage and protection spells Divining rights at ancient wells For all this favor I beseech, Tis’ yarrow’s powers that I seek   Yarrow, a perennial herb, has lovely fernlike foliage containing soft wisps of hair- type follicles. It flowers from mid-summer to autumn, displaying clusters of white, yellow, lilac or deep burgundy petals resembling tiny daisies. A prolific plant, yarrow has the ability to spread underground shoots as well as seed itself, often leaving some gardeners to consider it a weed. If one is willing to spend…

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    Musings From the Mossy Trail

    Freyr, Vanic Tribal God In days of Nordic yore, two great races of gods, the Vanir (associated with fertility, wisdom and the ability to see the future) and the Aesir (associated with power and warriors) battled between themselves until it was apparent the neither could conquer the other. A truce was called in order to unify the pantheon and two Vanic gods, Njord and his son Freyr, were sent to live among the Aesir in exchange for Hoenir and Mimir, who were sent to live among the Vanir. Freyr, Chief of the Vanir, is a great fertility god, a god of peace and a noble warrior.  He bestows growth, abundance,…