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Merry Meet Friends

Greetings and Witchy Blessings to you all this Spring Equinox!

We welcome you to our latest newsletter at this time where dark equals light. Join with us and celebrate as the wheel turns to Ostara, and the spring bulbs brighten our parks and gardens and the Sun's rays begin to warm the air.

2007 Witchaven Calendar
We will have the 2007 Calendar ready to be released at Beltane. Once again we will be supplying our Calendar by PDF and email to you as we try and do our best to support our environment and be a little more eco friendly. This of course will also ensure that our calendar cost are kept down and will be once again under $10.00 NZD

Lecture and Workshop Series
Just a
 reminder about the exciting series of workshops and lectures continue, Witchaven is hosting three more this year.

"Practical Astral Projection"

Through practical exercises you will discover and experience the difference between Astral Projection and Astral Travel. This workshop is designed to provide help and assistance, in the sometimes confusing area of Projection of the Astral body."

Date: Sunday, 8th October
Time: 11am - 3pm
Venue will be advised on booking.
Cost: Pre-booked $10.00, Door Sales $15.00

"Working With the Elements"

In gaining an understanding of and by working with each of the five elements you will experience a greater sense of spiritual and magical balance.
This lecture is designed to provide greater clarity on "Earth, Air, Fire, Water and Spirit.

Date: Sunday, 12th November
Time: 11am - 3pm
Venue will be advised on booking.
Cost: Pre-booked $10.00, Door Sales $15.00

"The Art of Raising Power"

For anyone who is interested in power raising, this workshop is designed to guide you through the processes of power raising which are essential to circle-workings.

Aspects which are covered within the workshop are:

Why? - the purpose of power raising
How? - The method to raise power
Practicalities - Practical power raising

Date: Sunday, 10th December
Time: 11am - 3pm
Venue will be advised on booking..
Cost: Pre-booked $10.00, Door Sales $15.00

Supplies needed for all Workshops and Lectures:
Bring a notebook and pen.

A plate of food for a shared lunch
Tea, Coffee & Biscuits will be supplied.

Expressions of interest on workshops to be emailed to: workshop@witchaven.com

Ostara Greetings

Ostara, (O' Star' ah) Spring Equinox - 23 September Southern Hemisphere

This Sabbat takes its name from the free spirited Goddess Eostre. Legend has it that she turned a bird into a rabbit and the bewitched animal then laid coloured eggs. This story is the basis for the Easter bunny, spring egg hunts and most other traditions that are associated with this holiday.

At the Vernal or Spring Equinox and marking the first true day of Spring, this sabbat marks the rekindling of life within the Earth.

The Goddess, joyful in the strength and lust of Maiden, begins to blanket the Earth with fertility as the fields initiate their bright flourish of wildflower colours and the trees bring forth new buds. The God stretches and grows to maturity, his strength on the verge of conquering the darkness.

At the Spring Equinox are the hours of dark and light equal, and from now until  Mabon, the new Sun God will rule in strength.

Any Iris or Tulip bulbs that you planted in the ground for winter, should be ready to burst into bloom for spring. You could also try Lobelia flowers - sow lobelia seeds into seed trays or punnets, and plant out when the seedlings are big enough to handle. They'll bloom in mid spring, therefore manifesting Ostara's spring energy, and will give your garden or windowsill a glorious boost of blue.

O spring, beautiful season!
O goddess, beautiful goddess!
Come with joy to us now,
with goodness and plenty,
Come with tall flax that roots deeply in the field.
Come with corn, lots of corn, lots and lots of corn!
Look, we have sent girls to you bearing gifts to make you happy:
Look we have sent them to you bearing cakes made with fried eggs.

- Russian folksong

Song for Spring
(traditional three-part round)

Part I:
Come, follow, follow, follow,
Follow, follow, follow me.

Part II:
Whither shall I follow, follow, follow,
Whither shall I follow, follow thee.

Part III:
To the greenwood, to the greenwood,
To the greenwood, greenwood tree.

Associated Deities: Eostre, the Spring Maiden, the Young Lord.
Associated Herbs: Jasmine, Rose, Violet
Associated Crystals: Moss Agate, Green Moonstone, Orange Calcite, Rose Quartz

Decorate Altar with Flowers, buds, and blossoms; cauldron filled with spring water.
Appropriate Foods include seeds (sunflower, pumpkin, sesame seeds) pine nuts. Sprouts; leafy, green vegetables. Flower dishes such as stuffed nasturtiums or carnation cupcakes. Fake carnation cupcakes: make spice cupcakes. Frost with pink frosting and place a fresh carnation petal on top of each cupcake. Stuffed Nasturtium blossoms: stuff the blossoms with a mixture of cream cheese, chopped nuts, chives, and  watercress.

Ostara Incense

1 part Jasmine
1 part Rose
1 part Strawberry leaves
1 part copal
5 drops rose essential oil

Ostara Oil

8 drops frankincense oil
4 drops benzoil oil
4 drops dragon's blood oil
2 drops nutmeg oil
2 drops violet oil
2 drops orange oil
2 drops rose oil

Mix in 3 oz of olive, almond, grapeseed or carrier oil of your choice

Ostara Oil #2

Bergamot 5 drops
Grapefruit 5 drops
Geranium 5 drops

Mix in a 1/2 ounce carrier oil of your choice

Fun for the Kids or the kid in all of us!

Make your own mobile. (This idea comes from "Circle Round") This emphasizes the balance between day and night, and you can make these as simple or as elaborate as you like. Items to create or find to balance on the mobile are suns and moons, eggs (real, empty shells, plastic eggs or paper eggs made by your children), thematic designs for the season, or anything else, really.

Hunt eggs that you have dyed with natural dyes

Have an egg toss

Do a Flower Coloring Experiment

Make a Pop Up Flower or A Pet Egg

Bunny Masks are fun!

Make little Flower Pot Bunnies to give as gifts

Once you have eaten those eggs dig hole in the earth outside near flowers or trees and bury them in the soil to replenish calcium.

Goddess Wisdom

Where Ostara steps, the earth is covered with new flowers and lush growth. She turns sorrow to joy, adversity to prosperity and despair to renewed hope.

At the time of the Spring Equinox, the cycle of birth, growth, fading, death enters the "birth" stage - we celebrate the emergence from winter and turn our face to the sun as the days become longer than the nights. Plants begin to bloom, new shoots burst forth from the earth, animals begin their bearing cycle, and the goddess' relationship with the earth's fruitfulness is witnessed in front of our eyes.

Spring is a time when Persephone returns from the underworld, Demeter's happiness to see her daughter spills over so that crops flourish, and Ishtar's fertile energy nourishes the earth and helps the nature prosper.

But most of all, it is a time to remember Ostara - the maiden, in German mythology, celebrated during the Spring Equinox when night and day are equal and balanced.

(pron East-ra) was the Anglo-Saxon goddess of the dawn, from whom "East" (where the sun rises) and "Easter" got its name - as the fertility goddess of the Northern European peoples, her legend was manipulated by the invading Romans - newly Christianized, they merged Eostre's spring legend to coincide with the time of Christ's resurrection.

She is also goddess Ostara, the maiden, in German mythology, celebrated when night and day are equal and balanced (the spring equinox for the northern hemisphere). Interestingly, the word "estrus" (referring to an animal in heat) is also derived from Eostra as her consort was a rabbit with an extraordinarily high libido!

According to legend, Eostre became angry with the rabbit and cast it into the heavens. Today we can see the "Lepus" (the hare) constellation at the feet of Orion.

Related gemstones:
Carnelian, coral, agate, brown jaspar (orange stones), amethyst, aquamarine, bloodstone, red jasper

Coming up:

23/09/06 Ostara - Spring Equinox
01/10/06 - Daylight saving starts in New Zealand
07/10/05 Full Moon - Aries
22/10/05 New Moon - Scorpio

31/10/06 Beltane Meet - The gathering feast also traditionally the selection time for 'Maying' couples to find each other.
01 & 02/11/06 Beltane
03/11/06 Beltane Leave  - Feast to farewell Beltane and to put aside the time of 'Maying' and to step back into the everyday world.

Other Events:

Witchaven Workshops - Don't forget to book!

Magick Earth Festival: 27th, 28th & 29th October - Port Waikato, Just South of Auckland.

The Magick Earth Festival is a celebration for Earth and Nature based faiths, religions and beliefs. And as usual there will be, stalls, lectures, workshops, discussion forums and a general get together!

This Magick Earth Festival will be held at the Port Waikato School Camp, approx 1 hour south of Auckland and is being organized by Pete and Kerry, of Pebbles and Potions, and Dawn, of Candles And Things, and their helpers.

Camping is available of course, as well as dorm accommodation and there are also a couple of private rooms. Please see the accommodation page for details. For those of you who don't wish to stay overnight, there is a day entry fee of $2 per adult (kids are free), which includes entry to the drumming circles.

For all workshops, lectures and forums, all our facilitators are volunteers so we ask for a gold coin donation (unless otherwise notified) to go directly to them to cover their travel costs.

All enquiries should be made to Dawn on 027 697 0858.

or email: goddess_on_the_loose@hotmail.com
or write to Magick Earth Festival, c/o 153 Te Ohaki Rd. Rd.1, Huntly.

Well on that note we will end this newsletter. Please let us know your thoughts and comments.

Until next Sabbat

Merry Part

Igrewl and Asrteia

For More Information Contact:

PO Box 203003, Waiau Pa, Auckland 2345, New Zealand