HekseCast

Join the Circle

Page 3 of 8

Celestial Workings: Saturn

Saturn is the sixth planet from the sun and is the furthest planet we can see from Earth with the naked eye. It is most commonly recognised by its fantastic ring system, which was discovered by Galileo Galilei in 1610. Saturn is said to have 62 confirmed moons, four of which are called Titan, Enceladus, Iapetus and Rhea. Titan and Rhea are the largest, and Enceladus is said to have a vast ocean beneath its icy surface.

The time it takes to orbit the sun is 10,756 days or 29.5 years. Don’t expect to live very long or well if Saturn was going to be your holiday destination of choice- its surface is minus 139 degrees Celsius. The planet is also not completely circular- its polar diameter is 90% of its equatorial diameter, because of its low density and fast rotation. It has the second shortest day of any of our solar system’s planets, and turns on its axis once every 10 hours and 34 minutes which is a very short day indeed! The planet itself is made mostly of Hydrogen, and as you get deeper into the planet it gets denser and eventually becomes metallic. The innermost core is hot, like you may have seen from our own planet.

It was first recorded in the 8th century by the Assyrians. It is named for the Roman God, Saturnus and was known to the Greeks as Cronus or Kronus. Cronus was the ruling Titan who came to power by castrating his father, Uranus or Ouranos. His name means ‘sky’ or ‘heavens’ and his consort was Gaia, which means earth. It is said that Ouranos fathered 12 sons and 6 daughters. He locked away the eldest two, the giant Kyklopes and Hekatonkheires inside the belly of the earth. Gaia suffered immense pain from this and persuaded her Titan sons to rebel. Four of these sons were set as sentinels at the four corners of the world, ready to grasp their father as he descended to lie upon the earth. The fifth- Cronus- took his position at the centre, and armed with an adamantine sickle, castrated Ouranos while his brothers held him firm. The sky-god’s blood fell and drenched the earth, producing the avenging Erinyes (also known as ‘Furies’) and the Gigantes (Giants).

Cronus’ wife was Rhea (one of the moons of the planet Saturn) and their offspring were the Olympians. To ensure his safety as a ruler, Cronus ate each of his own children as they were born. This worked until Rhea, becoming unhappy about the loss of her children (completely understandable), tricked Cronus into swallowing a rock instead of Zeus, their son. When he grew up, Zeus revolted against Cronus and the other Titans. He defeated them and banished them to Tartarus in the underworld.
However, Cronus escaped to Italy, where he ruled as Saturn. His ruling time was said to be a golden age on the earth, which was honoured by the Saturnalia feast. Not only this, but a festival was held in Athens, honouring Cronus. It was called ‘Kronia’ and it took place on the 12th day of the month Hekatombaion.

The name Cronus, Kronus, etc can be translated to mean ‘time’; think of ‘chronological’ or a ‘chronology’. All of these refer to something being altered or arranged by time. Cronus was especially regarded when looking at the destructive and all-devouring aspects of time.

This week’s Tarot: 08.04.2019

We started the Sunday Spread last week, but unfortunately there was no time to get the cards out and write about them yesterday! So instead, we will do it today. We are still at the beginning of the week – my calendar starts on a Monday – so I think we’re safe. So let’s begin.

First, you will need to focus on the cards, and let your intuition guide you to the one which is relevant for you this week.

1, 2 or 3? Which feels right to you?

Here are the three cards. Focus, see which one feels most relevant to you. Further down in the article we will be discussing each card in turn and what it can mean or imply.

There are many tarot spreads available for you to choose from, and many decks nowadays have their own spreads they have created based around their theme.

This deck is simply the Rider Waite deck, which many people will know or have seen. This is a more simplistic set, which is great when you are starting to learn tarot. I started with a highly decorated set, and it was very difficult to start learning with!

So if you have chosen your card, let’s get onto the reveal and what they mean!

The most popular option was number two. So below, we will reveal the card, and look into what it means for the week ahead.

Number Two

The Emperor Tarot Card

Number two is The Emperor card. This card represents a ‘fatherly figure’, and you may well be taking on that role regardless of your gender. It is said that this applies to providing for your family and protecting them inside and outside the home. You are perhaps the ‘breadwinner’ at home, the one who is working, or earning the most amount of income. You may also be seen as an emotional rock for someone – offering unconditional support emotionally.

You may also be seen as a leader, or be in a managerial role at work. As a leader, you are seen to rule with a firm but fair hand. You enjoy being in a position of authority, and giving instructions to others.

This being drawn for a weekly card refers to a situation involving rules and regulations. You can create calm out of chaos by breaking down a situation into smaller, more manageable chunks. Be sure to stick with a strategy you are following in order to get things done and see it out until the end. If you have gained experience through your life, now is a great time to pass it on through advice, teaching or other methods close to your skills.


The other two cards meanings are below. It is interesting how The Emperor was the most popular card chosen!

Number One

Page of Cups Tarot Card

This card suggests that a new idea or an opportunity has come to you out of nowhere. Your creative energy is flowing, and now is the time to seize it and make something of it – if you so choose.

The Page of Cups teaches you to keep an open and fair mind when approaching new and old opportunities. Be sure to stay curious and explore things which catch your eye. As is seen in this card, there is a fish popping out of the cup the page is holding – be curious even about this!

This card is often found when it is necessary for you to listen to and follow your instincts. The messages and ideas which you are drawn to may come from completely unexpected places – like a fish from a cup – but go with the flow and see what lies ahead.

Taking it down to the core, rudimentary meanings – this card may indicate you are in for an unexpected pleasant surprise in your life or related to you. It will usually be a surprise related to emotions or relatonships, as the suit of cups is related to emotions and feelings. Just know that you cannot force this surprise. It will happen when it needs to happen.


Number Three

The Four of Swords Tarot Card

This card shows a person resting as though they are a statue. There are three swords hanging on the wall in the background behind them, and one sword is positioned next to them.

Take a rest before you are focused on trying again. If you have just undertaken a huge milestone, this card is telling you to take a step back and rest before you undertake a new task, or another part of the task you are currently completing.

The constant pressure of stress or tension can make even the hardest of us break – this is why we get holiday leave in an annual year! We are not built to be constantly slaving away at the same thing all the time. This card may be telling you to take a break from what you are doing in order to rebalance and find yourself.

It can also be related to gathering yourself together after a life event, such as a death in your family or friend group, perhaps a break-up or the loss of a job. Take a step back from things and regain your perspective. Now is not the time to take those big decisions you may have been worrying about or what to undertake.

The person laying down is also in seclusion. They are alone and gathering their strength. Perhaps now is the time to start using the meditation app you downloaded months ago but never got around to setting up? Or perhaps you just need time to think, relax and be yourself away from life’s stresses and strains. You can also use this period of time to reflect on how far you have come. If you are working on a project, assess what has been completed, and what needs to be done for that project to be finished. It’s a great time for inner reflection and figuring out the next step solidly before you take the leap.

So which card were you drawn to? Are the energies something you can harness this week in order to get things done? Let us know!

Beltane

We are already in April, which means the next big festival coming up in the wheel of the year is Beltane. This occurs from the very end of April and into the first two days of what we now call May. It is a very sacred time of year when most handfastings were said to have happened. It is also the time when the spring is in full bloom – flowers are springing up everywhere, the trees are bursting open. The world is alive again! Of course, this only applies to the northern hemisphere – the southern hemisphere is heading into the opposite direction of Samhain, the gateway to winter.

In the Celtic tradition, it is said that the two major festivals of the year are to celebrate the coming of summer and the onset of winter. Beltane in April/May and Samhain in October/November (both spelt a variety of ways) are the names given to these two seasonal ‘gateway’ celebrations or yearly indicators.

The Irish Gaelic word is ‘Bealtaine’ (pronounced B’yol-tinnuh; approximately rhyming with ‘winner’) is also the name for the month of May. The Scottish Gaelic word ‘Bealtuinn’ (pronounced b’yel-ten with the ‘n’ like ‘ni’ in ‘onion’) is said to mean May Day. The original meaning for the word ‘Beltane’ is Bel’s Fire, referring to the fire which is associated with the Celtic or Proto-Celtic God Bel, Belenus, Beli, Balar and Balor. These names for the God are said to trace back to the Middle-Eastern ‘Baal’ which means ‘Lord’.

Some people may equate the Gaulish-Celtic Cernunnos with the British-Celtic Bal, but they may just metaphorically be two sides of the same coin; Cernunnos is associated with animals and nature and also the underworld- somewhat equated to Pluto. Yet Bal was seen as the ‘bright one’- symbolic of the rays of the sun, fire and light. Although he was associated with the light and the sun rays, he was not strictly-speaking a sun god. The Celts were not said to be solar-oriented and their chosen word for the sun- ‘grian’- is a feminine noun and is Irish and Scottish Gaelic for ‘sun’. ‘Mór’ is a personalised name for the sun- for example in the phrase ‘Mór dhuit’ this means ‘May the sun bless you’. To some cultures, the sun was equated to God-status in terms of being masculine, but to the Celts, the sun was definitely feminine.

Bel-fires were lit on hilltops around settlements to celebrate the return of fertility and life to the world. In Pagan-age Ireland, no-one could light a Bel-fire until the High King had lit the first one of the evening on Tara Hill. In AD 433, Saint Patrick showed an acute form of symbolism when he lit a fire on Slane Hill, ten miles from Tara before the High King Laoghaire lit his. In this way, he couldn’t have made a more dramatic claim to usurping the spiritual beliefs and following of the entire island. St David is said to have made a similar historic gesture in Wales in the following century. An interesting aside to note is that in Danish, the word for a bonfire is actually ‘bål’. This is very close to the British ‘bel’.

Another feature of the Beltane festival in many lands is jumping over the fire. This is done by many different people in order to bring fertility into their lives in a variety of ways- perhaps to help conceive a child, bless a marriage, bring forth a creative spark or bless the crops for the coming year. Cows would also be led between two fires or over the ashes to ensure their milk yield flowed all year long. This symbolic gesture still happens at modern neo-Pagan festivals, especially at a handfasting ceremony. Many aspects of luck and success were associated with the ritual act of jumping the fire, so there were many reasons to do so.

On May 1st, the cattle would be taken off to their summer pastures by the children, women and herdsmen. There they would stay until Samhain or the beginning of winter. It is said that the same thing happens today on these same dates in the Alps and other parts of Europe.

The Irish and Scottish word for summer pasture is ‘áiridh’ and Doreen Valiente suggests in her book Witchcraft for Tomorrow that ‘there is just a chance that the name ‘Aradia’ is Celtic in origin’-thus connected to this Gaelic word. Aradia is said to be an Italian goddess, and many people who practice modern Wicca may venerate her as the goddess.

On Beltane eve, the usual limits put onto breaking Hawthorn tree branches or bringing them into the house is lifted. Sprigs of this magical tree would be cut especially for the festival. It would be entwined into altar dressings, put into natural headbands to wear during the ceremony and for adorning the house. Although it used to be just leaves by the time Beltane came around, in recent years the flowers have been out at least a couple of weeks before the festival occurred.

Fertility is a big feature in the Beltane festivities, along with unabashed promiscuity. Although these aspects are still celebrated now, many of the more promiscuous acts are performed in private, even over the Beltane celebrations, simply because of a combination of too many people around and not enough land to hide in. Woods feature dog walkers, general walkers and bicyclists all year around now, and the old ways are long since forgotten by town and city dwellers after the injection of Christianity into the country. Dancing around the Maypole, searching for nuts in the woods and staying up all night to watch the sunrise are all still things that are possible. Parliament in the UK actually made Maypoles illegal in 1644, but these returned with the Restoration. In 1661, a 134-foot Maypole was set up in the strand.

So even though the more, shall we say, fruitful activities are no longer celebrated by hiding away in the woods, there are still a few practices which happen even today. It may be that you hold a small circle with your working group, coven or friends, or you choose to simply celebrate this turning of the wheel alone.

Page 3 of 8

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén