Throughout history and our legends, Witches and Wizards were the crazy men and women that lived on the outskirts of the village. Their craft was wild and strange to those that lived in the village, but, nonetheless, people would seek after their wisdom of the land, the plants, the local spirits, and for wisdom or guidance in their path. These men and women, often bachelors, would know the ins and outs of the region and often went walking alone.
Today, our villages are less rustic and more like local towns, and suburbs. But one can still be a Local Witch, and develop special connections with the land you call home.
Become a Local Witch:
Learn Local Lore Folktales, legends, and even tall tales develop the culture of a town or area. Learn these. Retell them over summer campfires, and over drinks with friends. People will start to LOVE your stories.
Start Frequenting locally owned shops and stores Develop connections and relationships with the owners and those that work there every day. Learn their names, and introduce yourself after visiting more often. Supporting locally owned shops helps small business owners and provides nourishment to your community. This is putting down roots, and develops your connection with the people that shape your town.
Find a Local Bookstore This is an extension of 1 and 2. Locally owned bookstores always have a Local Writers, Local Plants, and Local History sections. Ask inside where these sections are, and start devouring these books. Not only will you be supporting a local shop, but you have a direct source of helpful information. Oftentimes, employees and owners also know a lot of Lore. Talk to them about what you’re interested in learning. They probably have some hidden gems of information.
Learn about your Indigenous Plants Start researching and learning about the flora that grows locally, learn their lore, their uses, and magical or folklore associations. If Natives from your area used these plants, find out how. Learn where these plants grow and research local foraging. If you’ve never foraged, see if you can find a local group that can serve as helpful guides to stay safe. Never ingest anything unless you are SURE.
Start a local Plant Grimoire Keep dried presses of flowers and plants in it, draw and diagram to help you remember what they look like.
Learn about the indigenous animals Research their folklore and mythology. Start finding out what they eat, and what their habitats are. (Safely) Do your part to help foster their growth and health. This could be making insect houses to help local endangered pollinators, or leaving out special birdseed for endangered bird species in the area. (Safely) Start interacting with the non-aggressive species and leave them treats. This is great for birds, deer, rabbits, moles, chipmunks, hedgehogs, etc
Join local Conservation Projects Getting directly involved in wildlife conservation strengthens our spiritual and natural ties to the land we call our home. Taking personal responsibility and interest in it’s stewardship is honoring the spirits of the land, and the Gods.
Use Google Maps while exploring parks, or protected open spaces to drop pins and places where you find animal habitats or useful plants for foraging.
That’s all for now. More will come later I’m sure. Now go be the best local Witch or Druid you can be!
Lance always knew he was adopted, the Mcclains happily took him in. And for that he was grateful to them. He called then his family, though he did wanted to meet his real mother and his father. Wondering if they abandoned him, or simply couldn’t have him due to some circumstances. Though the adoption agencies said they found him on the beach crying at the age of 3.
Lance panted as he stared at the witch known as Haggar. Her golden eyes stared down at the wounded blue paladin. For some odd reason, she had sadness, almost like a mother losing her child kind of eyes.
“The Blue Paladin, I was once the guardian of the ocean.” Confessed the witch as she moved closer. Lance just glared as he looked for his bayard. “I won’t attack you, I have a very soft spot for you..” than she went on “We are known to be the most trusting, the most compassionate, yes?” As her long thin hands touched the Cuban’s face.
“You have my eyes…” she whispered, “you have his skin tone and hair.” She went on, Lance grew more confused. “You have his color blue But you have my markings…” Lance eyes widen in pain. He felt something sharp cutting through his face, but there was nothing on him.
“Shh..my child. This is your true form.” Lance stared at the reflection on the floor, so clear. He saw it. He had her markings, but in dark ocean blue. He saw the long elf like ears that alteans have.
Lance felt tears coming down, no he won’t believe it.
Lance grabbed his bayard but saw that Haggar had disappeared. He grabbed his fallen helmet and put it on a dark mode so the team wouldn’t see his face. And quickly ran back to his lion.
‘You found out my paladin..“ the kind voice of his blue lion whispered. ‘That Haggar was the original blue lion and your mother.’ Tears came down his eyes, “Yes I did…You won’t leave me because of that?” Lance whispered. ‘Of course not, you are mine.“ The compassionate lion said.
“Lance what are you talking about?” Shiro voice came out.
“Nothing! Just me and my beautiful blue just having a wedding plan.” Lance joked as he forced a strong joking tone. He was thankful for his classes in theater.
Shiro didn’t believe him, but decided to leave it at that. The mission was the worst of all they had, but thankful a successful one.
Blue told him how of Haggar became who she was, She was originally known as Farla. A beautiful blonde who was similar to Allura. Strong and kind. And when Zarkon betrayed Voltron, she followed him.
Blue went on saying she became pregnant with him, and had to hide him from zarkon. She hid him for 3 years or something similar to that. But the galra were getting suspicious. Haggar had put him into the blue lion and set it on sights of a far away plant. Or earth, though galra ships had attacked the lion and it crashed landed on the plant Earth. Lance was washed away from blue and onto Varadero beach in Cuba. Crying and in a language no knew he was saying.
Lance started avoiding the team, lying saying he felt sick, or just needed time to better his bond with his lion.
He started to put makeup that match his skin tone to hide Haggar’s markings. Though hiding the ears were more of a challenge. He began going to the space mall to buy different hats. Just to cover the ears, he hid them from team. By the time he thought he could go back to being the Lance they knew, something else happened.
His eyes started to change, the black pupil had change into a pale blue.
Lance felt tears coming down his eyes, it’s not fair…
Three Elements Home Blessing and Protection Ritual
Incense, or Sage Bundle - for smoke cleansing, to cleanse and protect with the “Sky”
Purified Water in a small bowl (optional ingredients include salt or herbs) - for saining, to cleanse and protect with the “Sea”
Protection Salt and Herbs (I’ll be adding lavender for peace and purification, and rosemary for protection and remembrance) - for protection of doorways, windows, and portals - to protect with the “Land”
Chant, Spell or Prayer of Intention - This step is best if you make it yourself, with your magical paradigms. Here is mine - “By the power of elements three, by the power of land, sky, and sea, I cleanse and protect this home to keep us safe from all harm.” I also have one for each element e.i. “By the power of the sea, keep harm away from me”.
In an empty house, or apartment, open all doors and windows, including closets, bathrooms, etc. Start at what is to be the heart or center of the home, (the hearth, the bedroom, the living area, kitchen, etc) walk walk the perimeter of the home clockwise. If you wish to banish all spirits, spirits that mean you harm, all entities, whatever it is- do so at this time. Once you set your protections, you may accidentally banish or piss off ‘people’ you want to be friendly with. Walk the perimeter and focus on all the good memories you want to make here, the creating that will be done here, the hospitality you will offer guests, etc.
Sky - Come back to start and light your “Sky” representation. Walk clockwise, chanting your spell. Aim the smoke at the ceiling, walking the perimeter of every wall and every room, including in closets, and around the shower, following the line of the ceiling. (not cupboards in the kitchen, because you might not be able to get the smell out later). Think of the smoke as banishing any previous tenants memories, bad emotions, spirits or energies you don’t want in your new home. End at your predesignated heart of the home.
Sea - Take your bowl of water, your “Sea”, and start again. this time dip your fingers into the bowl and flick water all around, aiming at the floorboard. Chant while you walk clockwise, focusing on the protection of the salt and water, creating a white light around your home as you sprinkle the water. Alternatively you can add to a spray bottle and spray the water. If you wish, sprinkle or ‘paint’ the water around any openings - mirrors, drains, windows - to protect from unwanted entrances for spirits or energies. End at the heart of the home.
Land - Now take your “Land” representation of salt and herbs, and walk counter clockwise. Chant your house blessing or the chant for salt if you wish (if you chant the salt blessing, do one more pass clockwise saying you final home blessing). Sprinkle salt in a line across any doorway or window to outside the home. The salt should stay on the window sills if possible. The salt can be swept up from the front door if you wish, just ‘paint’ some salt water instead, after it is swept up. Sprinkle some around drains as well, and across wall mirrors. This closes up any magical or physical doorways of outside influence. End back at the heart of the home.
If you have a backyard or patio, you may want to extend the protections out there as well. Use cascarilla powder (powdered eggshells) around any dirt or lawn you have, use pure water with no salt, and maybe use wind chimes or a bell to represent the sky instead of the smoke, if you wish to not arouse suspicion. Please don’t use salt on the land. Its bad for plants and snails.
Home Protection Cont. :
I will be setting up my home altar at this “heart of the home” and from there it will be an easy place to renew the protections. I would recommend renewing the protections once a year, or whenever you feel you need a little extra boost of protection or cleansing. Since you originally did this when no furniture was in place, renewing the protections may seem hard. I prefer to smoke cleanse so that is a little easier for me, just say a protection or cleansing spell at our home altar and walk clockwise around the house with your smoke. Its gets into all the tight spots, now that there is furniture in the way, easier. The spray bottle works well for this as well. I would recommend renewing one element at a time, in place of all three.
Don’t forget that other protections are still great to uses as well. I will also be hanging my witches’ ladder made of hag stones by the door for protection, having potted plants for cleansing and protection like lavender, and hanging some wind chimes to know when the Good Folk are near.
The last step is to enjoy your protected and magical home!
Hi! So, I’m writing a webcomic and one of my main characters is a Indian American teenager (he’s 14 at the beginning of the comic). As a part of the webcomic chapters are separated by little info pages (to help world build). The first one of these for Avi is a bedtime story told to him by his mom. I’d really love to use the Hindu creation story since Avi’s Hindu and I want to make that super clear to the readers. My issue is, I’m not Hindu and I don’t want to leave an important piece out of it or be unintentionally offensive in how I’m telling it.
I’ve structured the story like my own mom did when she was telling us religious stories as bedtime tales:
Before there was an Earth or a sky, there was Vishnu and there was a great snake. Vishnu was protected and safe deep within the coils of the snake, who floated upon the waters of the endless ocean that was the universe. Then, energy began to grow and with it, a lotus from Vishnu’s belly button. Inside the lotus was Brahma.
Brahma looked to Vishnu.
“It is time to begin,” Vishnu told Brahma. “Create the world.”
Then, a great wind came and the waters of the Universe grew turbulent. When Brahma next looked Vishnu and the serpent were gone and he was alone.
Brahma, determined to fulfill the orders of his master, took three lotus petals.
He stretched high into the sky and gave one petal to the heavens.
The second petal he formed into the Earth, barren and hard.
The final petal became the skies, the clouds, the stars, and the planets.
Then, satisfied with the canvas he had created, Brahma set to work. He touched the dry earth and rivers flowed, tenders flowers grew, and great trees soared toward the sky. He created animals and insects to live on the land and among the plants. He created birds and fish and laughed when they delighted in the sky and water. To all the creatures of the Earth he gave the senses to see and feel and hear and taste and smell their home.
Soon, the world was as we know it and Brahma was satisfied that he had fulfilled his master’s command.
For visual context: I’ve placed the text over a stylized starry ocean and a snake curled around a lotus.
I guess what I’m asking is this: Do you have any Hindu (or Indian American) mods or followers who could help me out with being culturally sensitive with regards to a pretty important bit of religion?
(Also, Avi’s not crazy religious (no more than any 14/15 year old) but if there are any things that he should be doing in daily life that internet research might talk about that would be awesome too!)
There’s not one single “the Hindu creation story.” There are at minimum three; two are found in the Rig Veda where
1) in the Hiranyagarbha Sukta an abstractly-conceived Divinity manifests the cosmos out of itself as a “golden womb” and
2) my personal favorite, the Nasadiya Sukta, because it’s basically a non-answer that shrugs and says “meh, who knows what happened?” (There are probably other Vedic creation stories I can’t remember right now, in addition to post-Vedic versions where it’s a goddess or divine feminine power responsible for creating the universe as opposed to a god.)
In addition to those there are the stories found in the Puranas, which involve personified deities like Vishnu and Brahma (and Shiva if the destruction of the previous universe is told of as well), and more closely resemble what you outline in your question. The common elements are: Vishnu lying on Sesha (the serpent), when the lotus emerges from his bellybutton, which unfolds, revealing Brahma, who creates the universe.
This is where you start to lose the established mythological thread, or at least diverge from what I personally know (so take what follows with the caveat that I don’t know every single Hindu scripture and version of a creation story—to do so may be impossible due to the sheer volume of the literature). I don’t recall anything specific about the lotus petals being used for definite purposes in the creation process. The actual process of creation is usually left vague; Brahma’s purpose is to create the universe so that’s what he does—how he does so is mostly irrelevant and left up to the imagination (so using the petals like you do isn’t necessarily wrong, you just may want to mark it as poetic license taken by the person who tells this story within your story).
The one detail you have that I would say is generally regarded as incorrect is referring to Vishnu as Brahma’s “master.” Vishnu is rarely considered to be Brahma’s “master,” although he’s typically depicted as more powerful and is usually the one who fixes things when Brahma screws up (such as by granting superpowers to demons and such). In Hindu cosmology, gods often pray to each other, which can be confusing but the implication is not that there’s a consistent power imbalance between two gods just because one prays to the other sometimes. It’s not like western or Abrahamic religions in that regard.
When depicted together, Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva are usually considered to be kind of the “holy trinity” of Hinduism, and are co-equal.
If an woman were to vault over a second story balcony and land on someone, what kind of injuries could she expect? What kind of injuries could her victim expect? Would it be possible for her to come out relatively unscathed, if she put thought into the best way to land before she went for the jump?
Hey there! I’m glad you sent this in. Thanks for asking!
Your character has 2 things going for her:
1) She’s not falling from THAT high a height. She could
still have significant injuries, but a second-story balcony is only about 12-15
feet off the ground. While that’s triple body height – our threshold for where we
suspect serious injuries – it’s also not, say, the 5th floor (which
is likely fatal).
But the person she lands on—assuming she plants her feet on
their shoulders—actually helps reduce
the height of the fall, making it closer to 7-10 feet, which is a much more survivable injury!
2) She’s landing on something soft (compared to concrete).
The person may alter the way she lands, but they’ll also slow her down over a
longer period of time than simply hitting the pavement.
Remember, it’s not the fall that kills your characters,
friends, it’s the sudden stop at the bottom.
As to the specific injury patterns and “safest” way of
falling, I’d say she would be best off going feet-first and aiming for the
person’s shoulders or back with her feet.
Now, with a straight drop with a landing on the heels, you’d
expect to see a very particular pattern of injuries called Don Juan Syndrome. What
happens is that the person lands heel-first, and the force just travels
directly up from there, breaking calcaneous (heels), knees, pelvis, and spinal
compression injuries. DO NOT WANT.
However, if your
character has any kind of martial arts training or has taken any parkour at
all, she’ll have a better idea how to land: feet parallel, knees relaxed, land on the balls of her feet, allow
her hips to tuck behind (rather than hyperflex the knees and push the hips
If she does it right, and she controls not just the first
fall (into the person) but the second
fall (awkwardly, probably backwards, onto the pavement from the height of that
person’s shoulders), she may walk away relatively unscathed, though for realism’s
sake I’d appreciate at least a
sprained ankle or wrist, or a goose egg on the back of her head.
As for her victim, they’re in for a bad day. That kind of
force landing on them, completely unexpected, makes me think of things like
broken clavicles and shoulders, plus injuries from getting pushed to the
ground, so up to and including broken wrists, broken arms, head strikes (with
scrapes / hematomas / …) plus the possibility of a concussion.
Honestly, they could both walk away with concussions. Hooray
From a reader’s perspective, I’m really curious as to whether or not she’s aiming for the person or
if they just happen to get in her way. If she’s self-centered enough to think “they’ll
break my fall”, that’s a really interesting trait for a character to have. If
she’s trying to hurt them that’s even
So, witches, pagans, and magical folks. I have wondered something for the longest time. So much of what we do is based on the land. It is based around the spirits of the land, the plants, the animals, the sacredness of the Earth, and our perceptions of the stars and planets seemingly circling around it.
What would we do if we lived on another planet, if we did colonize Mars? Would we honor the spirit of the planet Mars? Would the seasonal festivals be spaced differently? Would we need to come up with new ones? Would we, over time, develop a new Martian culture with its own traditions or adapt our own?
What if we lived in a solar system with two suns? How would that work? What would we do on a planet without plants or water? What do you do when the cardinal directions are off and the elements are not entirely present on the entire planet? What do you do when your ancestors are millions of miles away? Are there nature spirits on foreign planets? How would things work astrologically if we are on another planet and we can now see the Earth moving through the heavens?
Let America be America again. Let it be the dream it used to be. Let it be the pioneer on the plain Seeking a home where he himself is free.
(America never was America to me.)
Let America be the dream the dreamers dreamed— Let it be that great strong land of love Where never kings connive nor tyrants scheme That any man be crushed by one above.
(It never was America to me.)
O, let my land be a land where Liberty Is crowned with no false patriotic wreath, But opportunity is real, and life is free, Equality is in the air we breathe.
(There’s never been equality for me, Nor freedom in this “homeland of the free.”)
Say, who are you that mumbles in the dark? And who are you that draws your veil across the stars?
I am the poor white, fooled and pushed apart, I am the Negro bearing slavery’s scars. I am the red man driven from the land, I am the immigrant clutching the hope I seek— And finding only the same old stupid plan Of dog eat dog, of mighty crush the weak.
I am the young man, full of strength and hope, Tangled in that ancient endless chain Of profit, power, gain, of grab the land! Of grab the gold! Of grab the ways of satisfying need! Of work the men! Of take the pay! Of owning everything for one’s own greed!
I am the farmer, bondsman to the soil. I am the worker sold to the machine. I am the Negro, servant to you all. I am the people, humble, hungry, mean— Hungry yet today despite the dream. Beaten yet today—O, Pioneers! I am the man who never got ahead, The poorest worker bartered through the years.
Yet I’m the one who dreamt our basic dream In the Old World while still a serf of kings, Who dreamt a dream so strong, so brave, so true, That even yet its mighty daring sings In every brick and stone, in every furrow turned That’s made America the land it has become. O, I’m the man who sailed those early seas In search of what I meant to be my home— For I’m the one who left dark Ireland’s shore, And Poland’s plain, and England’s grassy lea, And torn from Black Africa’s strand I came To build a “homeland of the free.”
Who said the free? Not me? Surely not me? The millions on relief today? The millions shot down when we strike? The millions who have nothing for our pay? For all the dreams we’ve dreamed And all the songs we’ve sung And all the hopes we’ve held And all the flags we’ve hung, The millions who have nothing for our pay— Except the dream that’s almost dead today.
O, let America be America again— The land that never has been yet— And yet must be—the land where every man is free. The land that’s mine—the poor man’s, Indian’s, Negro’s, ME— Who made America, Whose sweat and blood, whose faith and pain, Whose hand at the foundry, whose plow in the rain, Must bring back our mighty dream again.
Sure, call me any ugly name you choose— The steel of freedom does not stain. From those who live like leeches on the people’s lives, We must take back our land again, America!
O, yes, I say it plain, America never was America to me, And yet I swear this oath— America will be!
Out of the rack and ruin of our gangster death, The rape and rot of graft, and stealth, and lies, We, the people, must redeem The land, the mines, the plants, the rivers. The mountains and the endless plain— All, all the stretch of these great green states— And make America again!