Apotropaia

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We are at the crossroads of the year. We are moving from summer into winter and the Veil is thin. Not all of the forces that cross through the veil are nice or friendly. Some of the spirits and entities are cruel, evil, dangerous and twisted. Some spirits have come to steal our happiness, suck it away; some have come to steal our souls, some have come to ride our backs like hags, riding us raw until we are nothing but hollow shells.

The dead will walk and so will the others. It is at these transitional times of the year that we lay offerings at Hekate’s Crossroads. Her demons can bring madness and pain. This is why every month at the Dark of the Moon we perform a great cleansing, and we lay cakes and other offerings at the thresholds of our homes. We hope to appease these entities, prevent them from knocking on our doors. We hope for them to accept our libations and supplications and move on.

Our gifts and offerings for the dead are many. We feast in the name of the dead, but we must not forget that not all of the dead are welcome. As witches we need to be discerning of the spirits that we let in our homes, just as we are discerning of the living. We are taught as children to not trust strangers, and even non-strangers, those who are close to our hearts can be cruel and can hurt us. Many books will tell you to forget, naively saying that if you are positive only positive things will come, they don’t teach how to fight, protect and get dirty. This is not the Law of attraction, this is witchcraft. These are forces of Life and Death.

We need to have “first sight and second thoughts”*. We need our crow eyes and our owl ears and we need to protect ourselves from the dangers lurking in the wrinkles of the Veil.

We lay Witch Bottles and hang Witches’ ladders. We hang rosaries and pouches from our bedposts, we smudge and burn and cense our homes with sage, imphepho, rosemary and lavender. We rub the lintels and the doors with black salt and mandrake oil. We plant Holly and Rosemary, Geranium, Rose, and Christ Thorns near our doors. We ask our familiars to prowl the perimeters and protect us from those that are harmful, evil and unwelcome. We go the crossroads, lay down the katharsia and don’t look back.

We must never forget the dead…we must never forget their wrath.

 

*Terry Pratchett -“Wee Free Men.”

 

All Photographs and Blog Content Copyright 2015 of Nightshade author of The Purple Broom

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