Tuesday, July 28, 2009

16th Mansion talisman

Yesterday I did a ritual for the 16th mansion of the moon, Al-Zubana, for success in the marketplace. This was the election:

Mansion #16 to increase earnings and sales
Picatrix Bk. IV, Ch. 9

PLACE: Austin Tx
DATE: July 27, 2009
TIME RANGE: 12:20 - 13:20 CDT
CONDITIONS: Moon rising, in the mansion, unafflicted, waxing

I actually could not use the whole time frame because my lunch hour did not go that long, but I drew the talisman on brown sack paper and anointed with Money Drawing oil from Lucky Mojo, and used the ritual from Chris Warnock's Mansions of the Moon book available at RenaissanceAstrology.com, I used some amber stick incense before the ritual, and during burned Lunar incense (my own based on Picatrix) and Money Drawing Incense from Lucky Mojo.

What I've learned is that I need to create/promote more channels for this type of prosperity to manifest, as before the day was out I did make an unexpected sale.. but it was a 7 Linden $ sale of a non-scripted object in Second Life! The instructions in Picatrix do say that this should be set to soak in the starlight for 7 days, so I have it in the window right now to gain its fullest influence.

$HAMELE$$ PLUG: Go buy a T-Shirt or download a song or purchase furnishings in Second Life .

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Sun in Leo Election, Sunday July 26, 2009

Tomorrow morning is an auspicious time for Sun ritual, here is my election for the timing:

Austin TX
Sunday 26 July 2009
6:42am - 7:15 am CDT

Sun hour, Sun rising, Sun dignified by Sign.

For some Sun stuff from Picatrix go here.

I may just take the opportunity to say some brief prayers and reconsecrate an existing talisman I have before I run off to grab coffee before starting work for the day. Wishing a bit I had planned ahead more but procrastination is my personal bete noire..

Enjoy this awesomely thematic music video by yours truly.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Progress made in good design!

Got a very quick response from OutYouth that is much to their credit!


You are so right and I thank you so much for taking the time to let us know. We're working on it. If you know of any geeks who'd love to offer to help, we'd be much obliged!

-- lisa

I look forward to being able to visit a *quiet* site.. if anyone can give them a hand, their email address is out @ outyouth.org

Rule #1: Don't Disrespect Your Website Visitors! Music Autoplay is Evil!

You would think that by now, almost 15 years after the advent of Netscape and the burgeoning golden age of bad web design that ensued for about oh 5 years, that everyone would be on the same page by now in the 21st Century as far as what is just wrong and offensive but egadz here in 2009 some long established groups with websites still need to be reminded that the whole point of a website is to attract visitors and not drive them away screaming in abject dismay and horror.. Great Apollon, like we don't all have iTunes and are probably already listening to what *we* want to listen to.. how dare a site designer usurp my choices in that way by imposing some kind of horrible tacky noise on my eardrums ninja style to unsuspecting people clicking a harmless looking link to see what is up. When I encounter this (other than a band site where you expect it and can plan your volume level or you clearly see a player to turn it off) I simply leave a site and never go back. OutYouth.org who I used to have respect for I am sad to say is one of those sites.. and I let them know how I feel:

Hi there,

I visited your site recently to check out information about your current programs and was aurally assaulted by loud brassy automatic noise that was not clearly indicated as to how to turn off without cutting the sound on my entire computer. Auto-playing music on a home page is an offensive disruption to website visitors and is extremely rude. I am disinclined to donate to your organization at this time over this lack of good judgement, courtesy, and taste. In what other areas might poor judgement be exercised? Please consider that people may be visiting from a workplace or school or library and the music itself is loud and in bad taste. This type of feature impairs accessibility to the visually impaired also. And it is just rude and discourteous to treat visitors this way.

For details on how horribly bad this is please see:


Please change this ASAP for the sake of visitors to load quietly, with a clearly labeled button to turn on music if one is so inclined to listen.

Thank you for your time and attention,

Mike Rock
Austin Tx

Monday, June 29, 2009

"Dark" or "Black" and Closet Racism in the Magical Community

I have to boggle at people that get angry when you point out that calling (African-American) spiritual work with a sharper intent as "dark or black" has racist implications that some may find hurtful and caution to the side of being considerate or attentive or mindful. They predictably attack the messenger on every occasion where this comes up and flip the issue around as the messenger being "rude" and completely project and deflect the entire issue off of themselves and their own words and the effects thereof. Folks who decry being "PC" in these contexts come across to me as wanting to justify lack of politeness or cover up their own unexamined racist attitudes and reactions. Closet racism is never pretty. "It's no big deal everyone says it." Not true at all! I do not and know many magical people who consciously avoid this terminology out of respect for where our work comes from and where we come from.

Darkness has many positive qualities, just as "Light" has many negative ones. The Earth our Mother is dark when she is fertile, darkness allows us to rest and recuperate, things about to be born grow in the dark, darkness extends our vision so we can see the furthest reaches of God's starry firmament and allows the brightness of the Moon and Venus to shine forth in all their beauty, please readers do not fall into that trap of equating darkness with destruction or evil intent, is it dark to focus a mirror and start a fire with a sunbeam? Is an erupting volcano dark? A lightning bolt?

I hope my readers check how their words sound especially when talking about a culture that has been oppressed for centuries over being "dark". Words have power and are the direct vehicle of our intent and our magic and our relationships between each other.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

When does life begin? Wrong question.

It is neither the shape of our meat nor the code of our genetics that make us a human being but the unique nature of our sentience. This sentience does not exist in the womb nor even for a short time after birth before an infant has been exposed to enough stimulation and human interaction to begin to form an awareness of self or other.

The question of "when does life begin?" is a red herring; life began millions of years ago and continues uninterrupted in the process of reproduction. "Life" does not take a holiday when gametes join together for some later stage of development.

A fetus (and newborn infants up to a certain age by the standards of many previous and some current societies including the forebears of Western Civilization - the Greeks and Romans) is a potential human from the standpoint of sentience. Traditional people and our own ancestors are and were not so materialistic as to assume that a human shaped body in any way defined "humanity". Nor if they had been aware of genetics would they have necessarily assumed that human genetics make a human being, any more than an acorn is an oak tree.

The unique aversion to abortion by Christianity as a religion comes down to a dogma that it is a sin to prevent any lump of phlegm, bile, and blood that can develop to eventually accept or reject "Jesus as Savior" from achieving it's divine destiny. In Baptismal vows the parents and Godparents even promise to ensure that the infant grows up to make the "right choice". When you terminate a pregnancy you are stealing potential souls from Jesus and the Church is what it all ultimately comes down to.

Societies not dominated by this implicit understanding of the meaning of life are much more practical and rational in deciding matters of who grows up and who does not in terms of sentience, degree of dependency, available resources, and the survival contingencies of the already developed human members of the community.

Somewhere between the Roman Paterfamilias and his absolute power of life and death over all dependents regardless of age, and the modern insanity at the other extreme of demanding that every fertilized egg be understood as having a "right" to develop even at the expense of pre-existing human beings, is a standard based on Reason (in the Classical sense).

In that standard from reason is a consideration that existing human beings must be free to plan for the future of their own and their community's survival and fitness, in terms of available resources, current size of the group, and other matters that are obvious to indigenous people but civilized affluent people take for granted and Christian civilization completely ignores or rejects as abhorrent on purely emotional and dogmatic grounds.

The decision to make or keep a baby can be and should be as rational a decision as whether or not to breed or keep a puppy, horse, pig, or cow - who are extremely valued members of a traditional village family by the way - or to give it away or put it down -- and based on the same logical and rational considerations of practicality (This is reflected in ancient Greek in that a baby is always called an "it" and not a he or she.) Is there space for it? Can we feed it and provide for it's needs and our own as current members of the tribe? Will it strengthen us or weaken us? Do I already have a baby and can't carry two and outrun jaguars or tigers at the same time? Or should we send it "back" to the spirit world of the ancestors to incarnate some other time in some other place that is more convenient and better suited to its thriving?

Family planning is not a matter for a "government" to intrude upon in my opinion. And on a related note and conversely neither do I feel that a lack of family planning on someone else's part puts any moral claim upon my own resources to support someone else's small human-shaped meat puppets.

A truly free people must be free to limit their own population and live within their means. Any lower standard of freedom devolves into an unsustainable insanity. And those who decide not to plan for the future should face the consequences of their actions or inactions as a family or small consenting community; if they really cared for children they would not have brought them into the world in the first place, or would have ended their existence prior to their achieving sentience, if they lack the means to support them.

This includes young with deformities or conditions requiring extraordinary expense and care - normal healthy children who will grow up to be strong with a likelihood to outlive their parents and care for them in old age is one thing, and that is a challenge enough for the average working couple. A sickly or defective child who will only live a short painful life and bankrupt a family in the process is done no favor by a society who is not willing to confess it is okay to tell God - "Thank you Lord but we are sending this one back to the Manufacturer. Please let's try again."

If these decisions are "agonizing" to parents today it is only because of the moral milieu that insures that any such notion instills maximum guilt and self loathing even for considering it, with a "Life At Any Cost" mantra at the heart of all decisions, medical in particular (or rather, a pulse at any cost, not necessarily much of a Life), but in other times and places would be recognized as the rational and even moral response in the most classical sense of the word - creating the greatest good for all concerned in terms of actual lives lived on Earth, not an abstract idealistic standard outside of any context or reality of real people with real limitations in Matter and Form. This is something any bear or cat or mouse or even a chimpanzee mother knows instinctively - if a newborn young won't survive to live a normal life or there is not enough food etc. to go around, Mom recycles and brings back to herself.

It is the nature of the Ancestral world to try to keep pushing souls into this one regardless of how broken the vessels, but as the Princes of Earth we are the Gatekeepers of souls and must exercise our power to say No Thank You sometimes both on behalf of the souls trying to enter and those already fully established and formed in this plane as sentient humans, both children and grown adults. This is the responsibility we took on in eating from the Tree of Knowledge, and our nature as creations in God's image; and it was only with this knowledge that Eve's Gate was opened, and the river of souls began to flow between Her Divine Thighs.

May She guard and keep Her Gate diligently and intelligently with true Wisdom, Mercy and Compassion for all.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Kraut Success

The kraut is salty but tasty -- I used this fancy pink salt so that means lots of microminerals anyway.

Due to the aforementioned phobia I left it in the fridge for over a week after it sat on the counter for nearly that long in its crock without touching it.

I'm still alive and healthy (knock wood) so.. so far so good.

It is supposed be really healing for your stomach lining (like Lunar foods tend to be) so nom nom nom.

The Ginger slivers I had in it give a nice warmth too.


Monday, March 9, 2009

My First Kefir

So I completed my first batch of homebrewed kefir today thanks to an awesomely generous student at UT. There was probably about twice as much culture for the milk I used than needed so after about a day it tastes pretty sour and has a slight yeasty smell. Not unpleasant though.

For batch number two I've divided the culture into two jars - that will also have the advantage of not having all my kefir eggs in one basket!

Basic instructions for the curious can be found here.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

A Rant In Support Of Magical Recipes and Formulaic Spells

I was just organizing the Documents folder on my Mac and came across an old gem I had saved. Back in the Stone Age of 2005, Judika Illes's totally awesome Encyclopedia Of Five BillIon Spells (ok just 5000) came up in discussion on a list of primarily Neopagans that I used to be on and someone was unfortunate enough to float this tired old uninformed canard in trying to diss this wonderful book (much better than anything the overly adored Scott Cunningham ever wrote I might add):

BTW, if anybody comes to me saying that they don't know how to write their own spells, then I'd tend to respond that they are unready to use anybody else's as well ...

My response for my public's edification and amusement was as follows:

This is elitist and I am completely opposed to this mentality. And it is not a very "folk magical" attitude either in my opinion.

And it makes no sense. Pedagogically speaking it puts the cart before the horse. How in the world can you "write your own spell" if you have never done a single magical work before? Where do you begin? Where would you propose someone begin?

**MAGIC IS FOR EVERYBODY**. It is a power that is all around us, in us, and in everything. Only in the Wiccan/Neopagan subculture is there so much elitism about who can use magic and how, and how much you need to know or should know, and you see it the worse among those who learned more from reading than from a family or community cultural tradition of magical practice, where the tried and true is passed from mother or aunt or neighbor to child like a precious family or cultural heirloom or cookie recipe.

In most cases all that is needed is a simple thing that is basic and yes formulaic, like taking a 3-salt cleansing ritual bath or hyssop or other bath, or cleansing with an egg. Or putting down a powder for something, it has certain ingredients and you lay it down in a certain way with a certain intention. There are not many ways to burn a candle for something, I mean you pick the color or shape of candle, you carve on it, you oil it, you set it down on your wish paper and you seal it and light it and tell it what you want, in a powerful cadenced tone of voice, from the heart and from your need. This is a more or less set, formulaic pattern that is known to work.

What the hell is left to write? I don't get it. I don't get what you "write your own every time" people are about.

If you think a "spell" has to be some complicated thing with rhyming quatrains and waving knives and other such extravagances, I'm sorry but that is a mistaken view. The most effective magics are the most simple and direct, and if you follow the basic formula, like in chemistry lab, you will get the desired effect. Magic is a science at its base, there is an art to it after a point, but you Neopagans seem to overemphasize the art side of it with a disregard of the fact that because at base it is a science, there are basic formulaic patterns that anyone can do, just like anyone can mix charcoal, sulfur and saltpeter in a certain order to make gunpowder, or make TNT from the residue of soap making from rendered fat and mixing with clay and rolling it up to make dynamite. You don't even have go that far.. you can buy the dynamite and simply follow the ritual of striking a match and lighting the fuse. That will be just as effective as if you made the dynamite yourself.

Soap making is a really good example because you can know all kinds of ways to make soap and add different scents, colors and herbs and everything; still the soap you buy from somebody else is going to be just as effective and getting you clean as soap you make yourself, as long as you follow the formula of mixing it with water, rubbing it till it suds, and spreading it all over and then scrubbing with a cloth then rinsing with water. The same formula will get you clean every time regardless of how the soap was made or by whom.

You can make your own candle from melted beeswax and all, you can even go all SCA and raise bees and collect the honeycomb to melt down to make the candles -- but someone else who doesn't know the first thing about raising bees or making candles can still light up their house just the same if they buy the candle at the candle shop and follow the ritual of lighting it with a match.

Traditions are passed down and repeated through the generations because they work, and use more or less local or easily available materials for the most part. This is what makes "folk magic" exactly that, the magic of a folk tradition.

There are variations on these basics but there are not so many, like making a cheese omelette, its just stupid to say you have to make up your own cheese omelette recipe to truly enjoy an omelette, there is only so much you can do with 3 eggs and cheese.

W**** brought up The Skeleton Key.. in the film the heroine uses a work given to her by a skilled hoodoo woman and she followed it and it WORKED, she didn't believe it would, and it was effective anyway because of her intention and because she was given correct instructions. This is how it is. It is an accurate portrayal of a folk-magical assumption and perspective. This is what people who grow up in a magical setting, like many African Americans and rural southerners, take for granted - while the more urban mostly white people who discover magic on their own have this more elitist attitude towards it all, that you have to know it all before you should even begin? And a regressive attitude at that --

*that if you aren't willing or able to constantly reinvent the wheel that you should not ride a bicycle*.

People learn by doing, and they learn at first by doing simple things that anyone can do. And how do you learn what anyone can do without doing what others have already done? Knowledge builds upon knowledge from one person to the next. Human knowledge progresses because we share what has worked in the past. Just think how things would be if there was the attitude that everyone had to learn on the own how to build a wheeled cart if they wanted to use a wheeled cart.. no we can BUY the wheeled cart, or we can buy the plans for a cart if we can follow the instructions and lack the engineering skills to design it. I don't have to be an electrical engineer to use an electric light, I just have to be able to screw in the bulb and flip the switch.

Anyway, with all these examples, I hope the silent majority of new or would-be magic users watching and reading will find encouragement to explore that various magical recipe books and resources that are available, experiment by actually using the spells, and learn from their successes and mistakes, building on the tried and true until one is well grounded in basic skills and feels confident to add personal flourishes.. let's be clear though that those personal flourishes are just that. They will not add anything to a work necessarily except for perhaps a certain artistic satisfaction.

There is no need to be discouraged. Professional rootworkers and other spiritual workers do just as effective work using premade ingredients and set rituals using 3000 year old Psalms and prayers as those who make all their own oils and powders from scratch and always speak spontaneously from the heart. You can too. The choice is a personal one, and will reflect one's own personal style and needs and preferences. There is continuum of involvement that has little to do with the outcome, and is purely a matter of personal taste.. even the people who infuse or blend their own oils seldom actually pressed the olives or jojoba seeds or almonds themselves as the base oil, for example.

And to say more great things about Judika's book, aside from just being nice to have as literature and history, in particular is especially good at explaining the process of magic and the mental aspect that goes into a spell. You could do much worse than if it were your very first book of magic that you ever bought.


I hope you enjoyed this little blast from the past. Comments!

I am now Twitterfied

Please follow and give me a reason to update the damn thing:


Picatrix update

I've added a link to the material on the Sun at my Picatrix site, you may also notice a Paypal donation button. This is for sending me encouragement if you value this work.

More to come as time and energy and enthusiasm allow...


Monday, February 23, 2009

Lunar ferments

Fun with manifestations of Luna! For the first time in ages I've started a crock of cabbage to ferment and trying my hand at kefir as well. I don't think it's supposed to have them but after sitting on the table after a day or so a jar of Nancy's Kefir did have strainable grains that I've transferred to a jar of Remember When milk to see what happens. I probably should have experimented with cheaper milk but eh.

I plan to start some kombucha going too, it gets pricy to buy pre-made all the time and it is awesome stuff. If you leave the commercial stuff out it develops the scoby on the top that you need to culture more.

Ia Luna!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Groovy man! Feel the LOVE (not!)

Folks this awful awful crap piece of crap "astrology" is touring the newage internets this week.. read it and weep:

"At dawn on 14th February the day dedicated to St Valentine, the patron saint of Love, the Moon in Libra enters the seventh house of relationships. And Jupiter and Mars are aligned in Aquarius in the twelfth house of spiritual transformation.

Forty years ago, the intuitive words of a song called Aquarius, brought the dawning of the new age into our collective awareness:

When the Moon is in the seventh house
And Jupiter aligns with Mars.
Then peace will guide the planets
And love will steer the stars.

At dawn on 14th February the Cosmos actually embodies this perfect alignment to support our collective manifestation of love and peace and the dawning of the Age of Aquarius."

It is calling specifically for Feb 14, 2009, at 7:25 AM somewhere in England I reckon and so I am looking at this chart centered on London, surveillance-happy capital of the former British Empire.

First there is no specific global astrological significance to the GMT time zone where this allegedly is occurring. And London is not currently the capital of the world. The UN in NYC would be a much better choice of location for a"global understanding" chart politically speaking. "Spiritually" speaking I would have to go with Jerusalem (ironically named City of Peace) or the Bodhi Tree in India.

For another thing bad in this chart the Sun is rising in his detriment in Aquarius, which is ruled by his enemy Saturn. This would be one place you would start if you wanted to curse someone or elect for an endeavor to be dreadfully unprosperous.

Also in traditional astrology there is no particular significance to the Moon being in the 7th in and of itself. Everything is in a context. If the context is to elect or signify the beginning of an age of perfect "love and understanding" then this is not nearly the right chart.

The afflicted Sun rules the 7th in this chart, and Saturn ruler of the 1st is retrograde in the 7th. So the state of both the 1st and 7th rulers suck and they are in opposing houses.

It is noteworthy here that not only is the 7th house the house of marriage but also the house of OPEN ENEMIES.

These two planets are fighting it out!

Much is made of Jupiter and Mars being conjunct in the 12th house. Joining with Mars the Lesser Malefic is an affliction of Jupiter who is the natural significator of spirituality and the 12th house is ACTUALLY the house of curses, malocchio, conspiracy, secret enemies, self undoing, and imprisonment. The conjunction with the North Node that increases good or evil influence makes this badness worse.

All in all, as an election for universal spiritual enlightenment and love, I couldn't have picked a worse chart than this.

But for everything absolutely opposite it is perfect.

Which just goes to show that to everything there is a season, and wishful thinking cannot change what is in the stars. Look around at what is happening at a global scale right now for realz..

Happy F*cking Valentines Day M*ther F*ckers!

Monday, February 9, 2009

How to tie a mojo hand

So I put together a couple of quick and dirty videos on how to tie a mojo hand, toby, root bag, gree gree bag, etc.

If you aren't sure what this means go to:


Without further adieu:

Check them out and don't forget to rate and leave comments.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Life is hypertextually interconnected!

So my buddy Frank posted a link on Facebook to the "Star Wars a capella" video by Corey Vidal posted to Facebook by a Matteo Andrei in Italy.

I find out on the page that it was made by Corey Vidal who I Google and find his home page.

Then his Youtube page. Poking around I see mentions here and there of the audio being originally by a "moosebutter" bunch of folks.


Then I pick up the kazoo I bought last night at Toy Joy that is on my desk and try to figure out what to do with it to get it to make noise. I know you put it in your mouth somehow and hum but it wasn't working.


I Google "kazoo tutorial" - the results were lame and unhelpful so BACK TO YOUTUBE.

I searched Youtube and found this awesome kazoo tutorial by MisterTim.

And it worked!

but that's not the end.

I go to his profile page and go to HIS homepage. And on the About page discover he is the "force" (ahem) behind fucking MOOSEBUTTER group who made the STAR WARS A CAPELLA SONG that as lip synced by Corey Hottie Vital.

Now how cool is all that?

Friday, February 6, 2009

Astrological dating humor

Here's a question I just wrote for the dating match site OKCupid.com:

If the sign of Leo is on the ascendent, the Sun is on the cusp of the first house, and it's the hour of Venus, what does this say to you?

A. TGIF! Coffee time! Let's hit the beach after work!
B. Don't know what you just said but it sounded hot!
C. This is just superstitious nonsense.
D. Get thee behind me, Satan!

That about covers the range of possible reactions I might reckon!

Needless to say when I answered my own question I put A or B as "Very Important" for my ideal match..

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Venus talisman election today

I missed the morning version but this afternoon from 3.23 pm to 4.15pm an effective Venus talisman can be made in Austin Tx.

WIthin that time sketch a woman holding a fruit in one hand and a mirror or comb in the other with the sign of Venus and her name(s) and write across it an intent suited to Venus such as "for love" or "for works of beauty". Light a candle and a nice incense (if available on short notice) and recite the Hymn to Venus to dedicate it:

HEAV'NLY, illustrious, laughter-loving queen,
Sea-born, night-loving, of an awful mien;
Crafty, from whom necessity first came,
Producing, nightly, all-connecting dame:
Tis thine the world with harmony to join,
For all things spring from thee, O pow'r divine.
The triple Fates are rul'd by thy decree,
And all productions yield alike to thee:
Whate'er the heav'ns, encircling all contain,

Earth fruit-producing, and the stormy main,
Thy sway confesses, and obeys thy nod,
Awful attendant of the brumal God:
Goddess of marriage, charming to the sight,
Mother of Loves, whom banquetings delight;
Source of persuasion, secret, fav'ring queen,
Illustrious born, apparent and unseen:
Spousal, lupercal, and to men inclin'd,
Prolific, most-desir'd, life-giving., kind:
Great sceptre-bearer of the Gods, 'tis thine,
Mortals in necessary bands to join;
And ev'ry tribe of savage monsters dire
In magic chains to bind, thro' mad desire.
Come, Cyprus-born, and to my pray'r incline,
Whether exalted in the heav'ns you shine,
Or pleas'd in Syria's temple to preside,
Or o'er th' Egyptian plains thy car to guide,
Fashion'd of gold; and near its sacred flood,
Fertile and fam'd to fix thy blest abode;
Or if rejoicing in the azure shores,
Near where the sea with foaming billows roars,
The circling choirs of mortals, thy delight,
Or beauteous nymphs, with eyes cerulean bright,
Pleas'd by the dusty banks renown'd of old,
To drive thy rapid, two-yok'd car of gold;
Or if in Cyprus with thy mother fair,
Where married females praise thee ev'ry year,
And beauteous virgins in the chorus join,
Adonis pure to sing and thee divine;
Come, all-attractive to my pray'r inclin'd,
For thee, I call, with holy, reverent mind.

A less pagan alternative is to read the Song of Solomon aloud.

If you aren't able to dedicate the image in that time, just make the image and you can dedicate later during an hour of Venus, the important thing is the creation of the talisman itself in the elected time.

An alternative to drawing a picture is to draw out the kamea for Venus: