Friday, December 30, 2016

Hekate's Cake

Hekate taught me a recipe that she likes as an offering.  It's a sort of garlic bread pudding, similar to skorthalia, but baked.  I cannot say how much of these instructions are particular to the current contents of my kitchen and what could be changed and have it still retain its integrity:

In the largest red bowl combine:
about half a loaf of very stale&dry white bread
whole milk to cover.
1 stick butter, melted.
garlic.  much garlic (about 2/3 of a cup)
1 handful dry dittany of crete, crushed
a glop of honey (about 1/3 cup)
let it sit for a while until the bread gets soggy
add two large white eggs
no salt, save what is in the butter

mix it all together, and then put in a cobalt glass loaf pan.
bake until it is golden.
Serve this to Me and eat of it yourself.

Friday, December 23, 2016

Krampus & Perchta

krampas title page copy.jpg

By request, a Strategic Sorcery style Global Ritual. Printable version here:

This ritual is best performed between Wednesday, December 21 and Sunday, December 25th.  The night of Friday the 23rd is ideal.  However, the ritual can performed whenever you want.  The rite can be adapted for your own use.  

Necessary Tools
  • A single-sided paper printout of this ritual (save it as a talisman)
  • 2 candles; dark green and “forest” scented is ideal.
  • Buttered bread with honey.  The shiniest, prettiest, darkest red apple you can find.  If you were poisoning Snow White, what kind of apple would you want?  Pick that one.
  • Red Wine, Dark Beer, Apple Cider, or WHOLE Milk (skim milk is worse than nothing)
  • A small pile of coins.  Gold Sacagawea dollars are especially nice for this.  You will NOT get your coins back.

Optional Tools
  • Mask
  • Antlers / Horns
  • Evergreen boughs
  • Staff or Stick (Birch is best.  Anything will do, except Holly.)
  • Ivy crown
  • A feast.  Roast a whole goat on a spit!
  • Friends / co-Workers
  • Breakable chains

Before Beginning
  • Spend some time collecting your thoughts, and reviewing 2016.  
  • Think of times you’ve been very generous.
  • Think of times you’ve been fully sincere.
  • Think of times you’ve been very peaceful.
  • Think of times you’ve been very brave.  
  • Think about things that have been holding you back; chains you’d like to be freed from.  Write them on the last page.


Begone Crass Commercial Ploy!
Begone Sanctimonious Spoiler!
Begone Santa!  Begone Christ!
Welcome to the Sylvan Knotty!
Goodbye to the Saccharine Nice!

Bang your stick three times. (or stamp your feet)

I bless this sacred glade, set apart in Time and Space.
The Forest Primeval weaves a fairy ring around me,
where Wood and Spirits embrace.
Now is EveryWhen.

Light the candles.

pan corner.jpg

Perchta!  White Cloaked Lady of the Winter Wood!  
Goosefooted Goddess of Snow and Frost!  
Rewarder of Magnanimity!  Punisher of Greed!
Rewarder of Sincerity!  Punisher of Thieves!
Dark Winter Queen,
Come to me!  Be with me!  
Inspire me!  Bless me!

Krampus!  Ram-Horned Lord of the Winter Wood!  
Goat-legged God of Ivy and Birch!
Rewarder of Carelessness!  Punisher of Heed!
Rewarder of Bravery!  Punisher of Misdeed!
Light Winter King,
Come to me!  Be with me!  
Inspire me!  Bless me!

Wicked Wild Winter Wood, Whispering Winds and Wandering Ways,
Weave your Web of Wondrous Wyrd!
Goblins, Boggins, Hobs, and Sprites; woodland Puck, and spring heeled Jack,
Come and join our Saturnalian feast!
The reward for heroic slack!

Pour drink.  Pour honey over bread

Drum a steady beat with your stick.

Perchta, Krampus, Wild Wood,
Winter Queen and King.

Repeat the chant until you feel overtaken by you inner Wyld.  
You may find your tempo and volume increasing to a frenzied crescendo.

Perchta, I am generous!  (cite an example of your generosity)
Perchta, I am sincere! (cite an example of your sincerity)
Bless me with wealth and health and all good things.  
Make me an instrument of inspiration!  

Krampus, I am at peace! (cite an example of your peaceable ways)
Krampus, I am brave! (cite and example of your bravery)  
Bless me with clarity and tranquility and all good things.  
Make me an instrument of inspiration!  

Bless these coins, so that they may spread your generosity, peace, and inspiration.

Wicked Wild Winter Wood!  
I free you from your chains!
Wicked Wild Winter Wood!
Free me from my chains!

Burn the last page of this pamphlet



Laugh, sing, dance, and cavort until you no longer can.  This is not optional.

Before New Years, give the coins away to beggars, or leave them where someone in need will find them.  DO NOT put them in a Salvation Army kettle, or any other collection related to Jesus or Santa.  

Place the offerings out in the woods.  If you have no woods near you, choose the most wild place that you can find.  If, for whatever reason, you cannot make food offerings, make a monetary offering to a charity that protects the wilds.  Really, this is a good idea, even if you do make food offerings.

The Thirteen Nights of Krampusmas

Aubrey Beardsley - Le Morte d'Arthur_65.jpg

On the 13th night of Krampusmas  
the Old Claw ordered we...

13) Fight against the dark god,

12) Prepare ourselves for battle,

11) Dance with maenad ladies,

10) Liberate the slave elves,

9) Escape from the Pale Warden,

8) Give unto the needy,

7) Love the strangest stranger,

6) Join our hearts and voices-


4) Seek the Mysteries,

3) Run through the forest,

2) Declaring all our loves,

  1. While cosplaying the Krampus Army.


Sunday, December 18, 2016

Benevolence Meditation Instructions

I haven't been able to find the artist's name and info for this painting.
If you know it, please comment below; I would like to buy a print.

In a recent conversation with a friend, we spoke about different kinds of anger.  Those of you who know me know that I can have a bit of a temper.  Those of you who have known me since I was a kid know that I used to burn with a deep fury I could rarely shake.  This is one of the practices that helps me deal with that.  It's inspired by a Buddhist practice called "metta meditation", but this isn't really that.  "Metta" is a Buddhist concept usually translated as "compassion", but I also see it rendered as "benevolence" "friendliness" or "loving-kindness".  I think of it as similar to "grace".  In many ways, it seems quite similar to the Hebrew word "chesed".

The Pali Canon says this about the benefits of Metta Meditation: "One sleeps easily, wakes easily, dreams no evil dreams. One is dear to human beings, dear to non-human beings. The devas [gods] protect one. Neither fire, poison, nor weapons can touch one. One's mind gains concentration quickly. One's complexion is bright. One dies unconfused and – if penetrating no higher – is headed for [will be reborn in] the Brahma worlds [the Good Place]."  I can't personally vouch for all of that, but I do experience many of those benefits, and I think it's a very beneficial practice.

The meditation I describe below is not a traditional Buddhist practice.  It is a personal practice I made up after hearing an NPR interview with the Dali Llama. 

Some preliminary advice:  if you can't feel it, just imagine that you can.  This is a difficult practice, and one that takes a lot of practice to master.  HOWEVER, the "trick" to it is all in the intention.  If you can hold on to the idea that you WANT to be able to radiate benevolence to all creatures, you're already "doing it right".  From there, it's just about continuing to work and practice until you are ABLE to radiate more and more love.

  • Begin with a few minutes of calm quiet meditation.  If you don't have an existing meditation practice, this might help.
  • Express, out loud, that it is your intention to engage in this practice for the betterment of all sentient beings.  Here is a (shortened) traditional formula, or you can speak your own words: 
    • "May all beings be happy and secure, may they be happy-minded!
      Whatever living beings there are - feeble or strong, long, stout or medium,
      short, small or large, seen or unseen (ghosts, gods and hell-beings),
      those dwelling far or near, those who are born or those who await rebirth
      may all beings, without exception, be happy-minded!
      Let my thoughts of boundless lovingkindness pervade the whole world:
      above, below and all around, without obstruction, without any hatred, without any enmity.
  • Think of a person you love unconditionally.  It's better to choose a living person, but a dead person is also ok.  If you have children, they're probably the ideal focus, but other family members, mentors, elders, or friends are all also good choices.  Our feelings for romantic partners are often complicated and conflicted; I don't think they're the best choice for this exercise.  
  • Focus on your feeling for them, and your desire for them to be happy, healthy, and blessed. Allow this emotion to arise as a physical feeling of radiant warmth in your heart.  When the feeling is strong and consistent, try to extend it until it suffuses your entire body.
  • Extend the feelings of unconditional love, acceptance, and benevolence you felt for your Beloved to yourself.  This is harder than it sounds!  If you feel the warm feeling you established in step one start to falter or cool, allow it to retract back to your heart, and return to thinking about your Beloved until it grows strong again, and then work on extending it.  When you can feel your entire body glowing with warmth and love, abide in the feeling for a few moments, and then move on to the next step.
  • Think of someone you're more or less neutral toward.  A colleague, perhaps, or a neighbor.  Someone you like well enough, and you wish well for, but you wouldn't usually describe your feelings for them as "love".  Try to extend the warm feeling you have built up, the feeling of love and benevolence, to them.  For me, I find it easiest to feel this by imagining they are in front of me, and imagining I am placing my hands on their head and the warm blessing love is flowing from my hands into them.  Again, if you have trouble, return to step one and rebuild the feeling, and then proceed.  When you feel the loving warmth pouring out of your hands (or you heart, or how else it feels to you), move on to the next step.
  • Think of a person in your life whom you really dislike, but don't actually want to murder.  Bless them in the same way as you did in the previous step.  Whenever you need to, return to your heart and rebuild your store of radiant, unconditional love.
  • Now, think of someone you genuinely despise.  Someone you fantasize about killing.  (cough, Tonald Drump, cough, cough)  Slowly, extend your field of warmth and love to that person.  It might help to remind yourself that you swore to do this practice to benefit all sentient creatures, and whether or not this is going to benefit Tonald Drump, it will FOR SURE benefit the whole world for you to learn to radiate compassion on demand.  
  • As needed, return to your heart to restock.
  • This step is the hardest, but it's the key to the practice:  Return to your heart, fill your body, and let yourself glow slightly with radiant love.  Now, imagine that your heart is connected to the radiant, all-loving, all-compassionate Heart of the World.  Some people might have an easier time accessing that feeling by thinking about an intercessory spirit like the Blessed Mother.  For me, I imagine a glowing, pulsing, geothermal love at the center of the Earth, the Womb of Being.  But, you don't need to think of it as a spirit at all, just look for the Love that animates Being.  
  • Allow it's love to flow through you unobstructed, fueling the glow in your heart.
  • Now, extend your glow from every part of your body.  In all six directions, to every living creature, to everything and place.  Hold this feeling, of being a radiant, glowing channel of Love, for as long as you can.  When you are ready to come back to being yourself, say something like this out loud, and then allow the feeling to contact.  "May all living beings everywhere, on all planes of existence, known and unknown, be happy, be peaceful, be loved, and be free from suffering." 
  • Sit for a while, coming back to yourself.  Drink a glass of water.  (you might not realize you are thirsty, but you are)
  • Repeat as needed.