Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Domestic Witch Blog Award

What a lovely surprise this morning to find I have received the Domestic Witch Blog Award!

Michel is an awesome blogger who has posted a lot of thoughts on Wicca and related subjects, as well as her thoughts and feelings as she follows her spiritual path. She is also the one who passed on this award, which is a fantastic way for other like minded people to network and share information here in blog land. Thanks, Michel, for the award!

The rules of the award are as follows:

Pass the award on to 3 blogs about Domestic Witchery that you really enjoy.
Include the award in your blog post.
Link the nominees within your post.
Don't forget to mention the person who gave you the award.
Let your chosen winners know that they received The Domestic Witch Blog Award by commenting on their blog.

There are an increasing number of blogs that I currently follow that are exceptionally worthy of this award but in order to pick three I have selected the three with the most recent posts on that would fit into the Domestic Witchery category. If you are interested in finding more blogs along this vein, check out some of the other blogs I'm following.

For now though - the winners are:

Confessions of a Pagan Soccer Mom

Witch Hollow Primitives

Hibiscus Moon

I hope you all enjoy checking out these blogs - and congratulations to the newest recipients of this wonderful award.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Every Day Life

On Wednesday night I dreamt that I was back at high school and I'd lost my school bag. I was retracing my steps for the day and returning to classrooms that I'd been to but was calm and just kind of going through the motions to find my bag. As I walked along the corridors it was like I knew it was the present time because I was noticing little renovations and was trying really hard to remember the names of the buildings and was thinking that made sense because it had been so long since I'd been there.

At some point I passed a staff room and one of the teachers seemed very worried that I hadn't handed in a note to go to some excursion. They told me it had to be in two days ago and that too long had passed for them to be able to do anything about it. They were quite upset, but in a sad and sympathetic way and not angry as I guess would have been the case if I really was a student. I told them that it didn't really matter and that I wasn't worried but they continued to fret.

Different things happened in each of the classrooms that I went to but I can't remember much about those parts other than there were other people who were also worried about this permission note that I hadn't handed in but I still wasn't phased, even though I probably would have been at the time had it had been real.

The last room I went to was an English class but it was one of my old Maths teachers (which actually makes sense as I remember that her and one of the English teachers were really good friends and that she had done three unit English when she was at High School and the English teacher had done four unit Maths). I didn't really like this teacher but got along with her ok. She told me that I'd left my bag there early and was surprised that I didn't remember. She seemed quite sympathetic but then started to get angry at all of the work I'd missed because I'd been wandering around all day trying to find my bad. She kept saying how I was usually so organised and was asking me why I couldn't remember things. She gave me a pile of books and papers and told me to photocopy them, but I didn't know which ones she meant and couldn't remember where the photocopier was. When I asked she got angrier and I ended up getting upset and telling her to cut me some slack and to think about the times when I was organised and did do the right thing and that it was ok if I was having a down day for once.

The next night I had a dream that I was going to a job interview that a friend had recommended me for and set up for me. I got there and realised I didn't even know the name of the guy I was meant to be meeting but just as I started to call my friend to ask, the guy came out and he knew who I was.

We went inside the office area and it was all very laid back but really productive and everyone seemed happy. He was asking me some questions, but not really very many for an interview. I was trying to work out what his name was and then I realised that I didn't even know what the job was that I was interviewing for. I started to feel that it was all a little bit too relaxed and the interview was too unstructured and lacking direction so I started to take charge and lead the discussion.

This seemed to be the right tact as he then took me on a tour and I seemed to be starting work there and then - talk about hitting the ground running! I don't know what the company did but it was something to do with marketing and everyone kept telling me how much of a genius this guy was at what he did.

I started to meet the people in the office and was thinking how great it would be to work there. Then I saw my sister-in-law, who is usually a quiet and reserved type of person but in the dream she was outgoing and had a lip piercing, which also quite unlike her in real life. The piercings seemed to be knew in the dream because the area around them was red and swollen.

The next thing I remember I was standing outside the front door of the office and I noticed there was an identical door next to it but inside everyone wore white clothes and were very stoic and quiet. There was some sort of set up where all employees had to spend some time working on both sides and I was a little disappointed because it looked so boring compared to the first side.

The boss from the white side then came out and he turned out to be the twin brother of the guy who had interviewed me, even though they didn't look the same other then in age, which was somewhere in their 50's. The white boss guy was angry about something and had an argument with the interviewer guy. Even though I wasn't involved I felt like it had something to do with me and I was even more worried about having to work for the white boss guy.

Both of these dreams seem to be about life choices and external pressures and expectations. They've probably come up because of the temp work I will be starting tomorrow. I'm sure there is more to it than that though as they were so involved and so vivid at the time, it seems like such a lot of trouble for my subconscious to go to just to talk to me about such obvious and basic elements of every day life.

Jacob's Ladder

The term Jacob’s Ladder has been applied to several contexts, including film, literature, music, botany and even an electrical device; however, it is originally from the bible in the book of Genesis Chapter 28 verse 10-22, which is where Jacob is fleeing from his brother, Esau’s rage after having stolen his father’s blessing and birth-right. This is translated in the New International Version of the bible as follows:

10 Jacob left Beersheba and set out for Haran. 11 When he reached a certain place, he stopped for the night because the sun had set. Taking one of the stones there, he put it under his head and lay down to sleep. 12 He had a dream in which he saw a stairway [a] resting on the earth, with its top reaching to heaven, and the angels of God were ascending and descending on it. 13 There above it [b] stood the LORD, and he said: "I am the LORD, the God of your father Abraham and the God of Isaac. I will give you and your descendants the land on which you are lying. 14 Your descendants will be like the dust of the earth, and you will spread out to the west and to the east, to the north and to the south. All peoples on earth will be blessed through you and your offspring. 15 I am with you and will watch over you wherever you go, and I will bring you back to this land. I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you."

16 When Jacob awoke from his sleep, he thought, "Surely the LORD is in this place, and I was not aware of it." 17 He was afraid and said, "How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God; this is the gate of heaven."

18 Early the next morning Jacob took the stone he had placed under his head and set it up as a pillar and poured oil on top of it. 19 He called that place Bethel, [c] though the city used to be called Luz.

20 Then Jacob made a vow, saying, "If God will be with me and will watch over me on this journey I am taking and will give me food to eat and clothes to wear 21 so that I return safely to my father's house, then the LORD [d] will be my God 22 and [e] this stone that I have set up as a pillar will be God's house, and of all that you give me I will give you a tenth."

[a] Genesis 28:12 Or ladder
[b] Genesis 28:13 Or There beside him
[c] Genesis 28:19 Bethel means house of God.
[d] Genesis 28:21 Or Since God the father's house, the LORD
[e] Genesis 28:22 Or house, and the LORD will be my God, 22 then

In general terms, Jacob’s Ladder is a connection between Heaven and Earth; however, there have been a number of interpretations of the meaning of Jacob’s Ladder based on both the Christian and Jewish teachings. Some of the interpretations are as follows:

  • The angels on the ladder were said to climb to certain rungs and fall down representing the exiles that the Jewish people would be subjected to before the coming of the Messiah.
  • The angels on the ladder were Jacob’s constant companions, with the ascending angels being those who were assigned to the Holy Land and were returning to Heaven as Jacob had reached the border of Canaan, which was to later become Israel, and the descending angels being those who were assigned to other lands and were returning to earth to continue on with Jacob.
  • The place where Jacob had been given the dream of the ladder (or stairway) was where the Temple in Jerusalem would later be built, which was seen as a connection to Heaven through the prayers and sacrifices that were offered there.
  • The dream has also been interpreted as a reference to the giving of the Torah at Mount Sinai, another connection between Heaven and earth. Jewish scholars note that the word ‘sulam’, which is the Hebrew word for ladder, and the word ‘Sinai’ have the same numerical letter value, known as gematria.
  • Subscribers to the idea of reincarnation believe that the angels represent souls descending to bodies when the physical body is born unto the earth and ascending to Heaven when the person dies.
  • The dream reflects the highs and lows of life with the angels descending to earth to help those in need in times of despair and suffering and pulling those souls upwards when needed.
  • The stairway in Jacob’s dream refers to Jesus. This is further reinforced in John 1:51, which uses the same imagery of the angels but refers to Jesus, a descendant of Jacob, as the Son of Man in place of the ladder. This supports the bible’s message that through the sacrifice Jesus made at his crucifixion, his death opened the path to Heaven. This verse reads as follows:
He then added, "I tell you the truth, you shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man."
  • The stairway can also been seen as the church itself and was referred to in this way as early as the 2nd Century by Saint Irenaeus.
  • The stairway is the path that the soul takes after death in order to get to Heaven.
  • The rungs on the ladder represent virtues that a person should aspire to in order for their soul to be able to ascend into the Kingdom of Heaven when they die.
  • The dream reinforces the idea that only God can provide the path to Heaven. This idea is often juxtaposed with the story in Genesis 11: 1-9 where the people of Babel attempted to build a tower to Heaven by their own means and not through a true connection with God. In this story, God punishes the people of Babel by confusing their language and scattering all over the earth.
  • The angels were carrying messages and prayers to and from Heaven and the earth.
Jacob’s Ladder is also used as a symbolic connection between the physical and spiritual existence, particularly in many Hermetic concepts. In some Hermetic texts, the ladder was depicted as a chain, with each link in the chain representing different spheres of consciousness and also the representation of how man on the physical plan is connected with God at the highest level. In other Hermetic texts, the ladder was used as another representation of the tree of life, which is the basis of the Kabalah. Sometimes the ladder was shown as a circle, thereby representing the continuous cycle of life and death. In alchemy, the ladder symbolised the transformation that took place between base substances and those of the greatest worth, both physically and spiritually. It has also been used as a meditation visualisation for ascension towards transformation and the Divine light.