Ring Out, Solstice Bells


 ‎"Ring Out, Solstice Bells" Jethro Tull, lyrics by Ian Anderson

Now is the solstice of the year,
winter is the glad song that you hear.
Seven maids move in seven time.
Have the lads up ready in a line.

Ring out these bells.
Ring out, ring solstice bells.
Ring solstice bells.

Join together beneath the mistletoe.
by the holy oak whereon it grows.
Seven druids dance in seven time.
Sing the song the bells call, loudly chiming.

Ring out these bells.
Ring out, ring solstice bells.
Ring solstice bells.

Praise be to the distant sister sun,
joyful as the silver planets run.
Seven maids move in seven time.
Sing the song the bells call, loudly chiming.
Ring out those bells.
Ring out, ring solstice bells.
Ring solstice bells.
Ring on, ring out.
Ring on, ring out.

Summer Solstice Rite 2011 Baltic/Slavic, quasi-ADF style

This was performed for the Summer Solstice 2011.  There's a lot of background information and parenthetical text in this rite, mainly because the others weren't familiar with the Slavic/Baltic lore elements at all, and I wrote the rite myself, with not a lot of discussion beforehand.  Plus, there were little notes written for the participants with suggestions as to what they could do for their role, but basically leaving it up to them, as they are all extremely experienced ritualists.
Probably the only thing that wasn't done according to the written ritual, was that the omen was done by tarot, as I didn't have time to create the pysanky symbol divination set.  That's another project for another day!
I call this rite 'quasi-ADF', because the group of us that practice together, are not a grove, nor a protogrove, not even a study group.  A few of us are solitary ADF members, one is a member of an ADF grove, several are ex-ADF members, and a few are ADF-friendly pagans, and one is interested in Celtic shamanism, but through us, is interested in ADF druidism also....
But most importantly, I played a tad bit fast and loose with ADF's Core Order of Ritual.  Namely because the rite took place at my home, outside, and I felt that my house spirits should be the ones to deal with the Outsiders.  But since my house spirits are Zaltys, sacred to the Deity of the Occasion for this ritual, it made sense to me to have the Zaltys be the Gatekeeper, and also deal with the Outsiders, all at once.  So I rearranged those steps in the COoR to reflect this. At any rate, it worked.

Rasa – a Baltic/Slavic or Lithuanian/Polish Summer Solstice Rite, 2011
'Grove of the Misfit Druids', quasi-ADF

Hearth Culture focus for this rite:
In 'A History of Pagan Europe', Jones and Pennick write, “Despite the differences in language, many deities of the Baltic Pantheon are shared by the Slavs.” (p. 174). As an ADF Druid partially of Polish descent (which I assumed was Slavic), this was of extreme interest, because I kept finding conflicting information about Slavic versus Baltic practices – even from our own ADF Slavic Kin, and the Balts who also participate on the Slavic Kin elist. In addition, it (not so surprisingly) turns out that the modern boundary between Poland and Lithuania does not reflect the foggy border between 'Slavs' and 'Balts'.... And so, I feel I am justified (and honest) when I say that this rite is a 'Baltic/Slavic or Lithuanian/Polish Summer Solstice Rite'. As always, 'your mileage may vary'.
To the Balts, the Sun was a goddess - Saule Motul – the Mother Sun. Saule charged across the hill of the sky in a horse drawn chariot with copper wheels. The Sun is her jug or ladle from which light pours forth. One of the most powerful goddesses, she provides nature's warmth and fertility. Saulė is the patroness of all misfits, especially orphans, since only She is a suitable substitute for a mother’s warmth. Her universal Mother role is confirmed by the word for “world” - “pasaulis” which translates as “under the sun”.
Historically, the Lithuanian celebration of Rasa started the evening before the Summer Solstice, and included circle dances, games and divination, a ritualized meal, greeting the setting sun, lighting the bonfires and making offerings, and visiting the fields, trees and groves to bless them. Healing herbs and flowers were collected and poles or trees, often with 3 branches were erected with fires lit atop them. The herbs and flowers were garlanded upon them and hung with wreaths. The earth's axis as world tree with the sun perched atop it was a common motif. This was followed by a primary bonfire, where a corn dolly was burned to symbolize the passing of the old. Dancers circled the bonfire, and wreaths were cast. Bathing, and a boat with a fire aboard sails to symbolize Saule's stopping her chariot in the evening sea to wash her horses – tired from the day's ride across the sky. Finally, the people greeted the nocturnal celestial bodies – the stars, as well as the moon, and awaited the rising sun to worship her. Finally, the morning dew was collected and saved for bathing, and healing properties. The belief is that dew, like all waters, comes from the depths of the sea, through the earth. Combine that with the rising and setting summer solstice sun, and dew on that day is imbued with exceptional healing powers. Rasa is the Festival of Dew.
So as dew falls on the grass, so Saule's beloved animal was the Zaltys, or grass snake. This European species looks extremely similar to the North American garter snake – so much so that they were once classified with the same Latin name – Natrix, which is linguistically connected to the Irish nathr, the German nattern, and the Welsh naddred, from which we get the English 'adder'. All the while, the grass snake (like the garter snake) is completely harmless.
The Zaltys symbolized good fortune and it was considered very bad luck to kill any snake. It was said that Saule would weep to see her zaltys hurt, and her tears turned to amber as a reminder to men. Saule was also considered a goddess of the hearth fire. At Rasa, the Hearth Fire was extinguished and relit from a fire brought from the spiritual center of Lithuania. And the Zaltys, as Her favorite, was called the house-snake, and lived in the farmhouses by the hearth fire or stove. In some cases, as a fertility symbol, the Zaltys was encouraged to live under the bed. In some cases, a spirit house was provided for the zaltys to reside in, in others, the Zaltys lived under the millstone by the hearth. In winter, they sleep. January 25th is the celebration of Kirmeline (Day of Serpents). Kirmeline is the symbolic awakening of the zaltys. The best of human food, and milk is put out for them – if the priests can entice them to eat and drink, a prosperous year is foretold. Each farmstead worked hard to encourage a Zaltys to take up residence. People revered the Zaltys and they were kept as living guardians for sacred sites.
The Zaltys can traverse the Three Worlds (like a garter snake, they can climb the branches of the World Tree to the Sky, slither across, and within, the Earth itself – as well as swim across and dive to the depths of the Waters.) For all of these reasons, the Zaltys will act as our Gatekeeper, as we worship Saule as the Summer Solstice Sun.
Praise offerings for Saule can include anything golden, copper, yellow, orange or white. Golden apples, white wine, mead, or fruit juices. Amber or citrine. Flowers, wreaths, wheels, eggs, fire, fireworks or incense. Flax is sacred to Her, and a special meal of golden cheese and mead is often prepared on Rasa.
The group offering will be a handmade, organic grapevine wreath (LOL) to represent the wheel of the Sun. We will each be given a strip of yellow/gold ribbon or fabric before the ritual to concentrate our praise into. Then we will pass the wreath, attach our strips to the wreath, and finally the wreath will be tossed on the Fire. As it burns our praise will rise to Saule on the smoke.

  1. Clear-cut beginning – Nine knells – Drum. ONYX.
  2. Processional
  3. Purifications – stone (Matronae Stones), bowl of water, incense. SELF.
May the Power of the Land purify me.
May the Power of the Sea purify me.
May the Power of the Sky purify me.
  1. Ground, Center and Merge. ONYX. (Your discretion... but the Balts religion did focus strongly on trees, so a tree meditation w/ 2Powers would be lovely ) ;)
  2. Acknowledge Outsiders and Gatekeeper? - ME. (Offering, bowl of milk).
Now we enter the Alkas – our sacred sanctuary. As we do this, I ask my household spirits– my Zaltys, to come out from your spirit house, come out and draw the boundary with serpentine coils. Join your magic with mine to protect our sacred Alkas from the Outsiders – those who would disturb our rite. We assure that They are there, and We are here. Outsiders – take this bread and go – do not disrupt our working here tonight.
Zaltys – take this bread, salt, and milk as our offering. Zaltys – accept our offering! <All> Zaltys, accept our offering! Now, join your magic with mine to open the Gate! Part the Veil with your serpentine coils, curving up and around us and hold open the Ways! Travel the Ways of the Fire, Well, and Tree and hold open the Gates! Let the Gates be open with the arch of your serpentine coil – Open the Gate!
The Gate Is Open! <All> The Gate is Open!
  1. Bardic Patron – Brighid. EARRACH. (Your discretion) (Offering, light candle).
  2. Additional step – Bardic pre-emptive piacular offering regarding pronunciation – ME.
If out of ignorance of language in pronouncing words or names,
Or if we for ANY reason cause offense,
Kindreds, please accept this offering in recompense,
And know that our hearts and intent are pure.
(Offering, wine/mead – offering stone).
  1. Earth Mother dedication - Zemyna.– the Matronae Stones. - JOHN (offering, birdseed). Offer grain and say:
Davei manei, Žemyna, duodame ir tau
[You] gave for us, Mother Earth, we are giving for you too.
(a request for the land to continue to be fruitful.)

  1. Declaration of Intent. ME.
We are here to celebrate the Summer Solstice - The Longest Day, as our Ancestors did for generations before us, and as our children will do, generations hence. Tonight, we honor Saule – the Sun goddess. Saule Motul - the Mother Sun at Her greatest point. We praise her as her ride today ends and the dew falls, on this, the Festival of Rasa. Our Aukuras (stone fire altar) awaits.
  1. The Fire – the fire pit. - KIM (offer oil to the Fire).
In the heart of the Fire, kindles the Fires of Inspiration. Sacred Fire, Burn within Me. <All> Sacred Fire, Burn within Me.
  1. The Well - the pond. - ROWAN (offer silver coin to the Well).
In the depths of the Well, springs the Waters of Wisdom. Sacred Well, Flow within Me. <All> Sacred Well, Flow within Me.
  1. The World Tree – tiki torch – ARTOS (cense the Tree with incense, and light the torch atop it.)
Down through the depths of the Well to the Underworld, up through the flames of the Fire to the Upperworld, and spanning the Middle World of Nature and Men, stands the World Tree – Upright like you, Azuolas, Great Oak! Sacred Tree, Grow within Me! <All> Sacred Tree, Grow within Me!
<All> The Fire, The Well, The Sacred Tree – Flame and Flow and Grow in Me!
  1. The Creation Myth – EARRACH. (Your discretion. Will have a copy of the Creation Myth if needed....)
I say: From whence have we come? What is the Story of our People?
  1. Dwellers in the Three Worlds
-Worldly Spirits - Offer bread and salt. JOHN
Worldly Spirits, hear our call to join our rite! Barstukai (Elves), Ežerinis and Upinis (lake & river spirits), Laukų Dvasios (animal spirits of the fields), Household and homestead spirits, Come join us here, and accept our offerings! <All> Worldly Spirits – accept our offerings!
(Laukų Dvasios - spirits of the fields. When fields of crops waved in the wind, people saw them as spirits running through the fields. Some of these were Kiškis (hare), Meška (bear), Lapė (fox), Katinas (tomcat), Smauglys (boa), Arklys (horse), and Vilkas (wolf).)

-Ancestors Vėlės (souls) - spirits of our Ancestors. (Offering beer) DIANA
Veles, may our call reach you in Dausos, the hill of the sky, abode of the dead. May Vejopatis, Lord of the Wind, and Master of Dausos, speed your way here to join us in our rite. Veles, join us here, and accept our offerings! <ALL> Veles, accept our offerings!
-Blessed Ones (Offering, oil or incense to the Fire) EARRACH.

Deities of the Three Worlds! Deivas, the Chief God! Laima, Lady of Luck and Fate! Perkunas the Thunderer! Menulis of the Moon! Deities of Nature, Craft, and Kingship ! Join us here at our Rite! We give you praise and honor! Deities, accept our offerings! <All> Deities, accept our offerings!

  1. The DotO – Saule. - ME.
Saule Motul – Mother Sun! As you drove your chariot across the sky on this Longest Day - we praise you! <All> We praise you!
Saule who warms our fields, grows our crops, and provides for us - We praise you! <All> We praise you!
Saule Motul – Mother Sun! You who gather the misfits and orphans to you, and warm us at your hearth fire as only a Mother would – We Praise you! <All> We praise you!
  1. Individual Praise offerings
  2. Group/Conclusionary offering: THE SYMBOLIC SACRIFICE: the wreath.
  3. Saule Motul – accept our offering! <All> Saule Motul – accept our offering!
  4. Deity’s pronouncement – Taking the Omen – DIANA. Pysanky divination – with a very brief ''cheat sheet”, unless you'd prefer your own methods...
Before the Seer takes the Omen, I say: On this shortest night, after the longest day – the Veil grows thin, and our Gateway is well warded. The Kindred have heard our praise. Our offerings and sacrifice have been made. But a gift calls for a gift – what omen do the Kindred give us? What blessing do the Kindred give us?
The Seer pronounces the omen. I ask: What use do you have for this omen? Consider this omen within your heart and head. Interpret it's meaning in your life.
  1. Induction of receptivity – After the Seer reveals the omen, I ask: With the Omen comes the Blessing. Do you gathered here accept the blessing of Saule? <All> We DO!
  2. Consecration agreement – Holding the vessel above the Fire, I say: Then through Saule's hearth fire, kindle a blessing within this golden drink! Let this drink become the Dew of Rasa!
  3. Taking the Waters – passing out cups, and distributing the Blessing. We all drink together, sharing the ritual Blessing. Meditate a bit on the Blessing infusing thoughout your body.
  4. Call for unfinished work – Is there any work yet undone this night? …..... If not, then resettle yourselves to undo what we have done here as we close down this rite.
  5. Primary Deity
Saule, the evening of the Longest Day has fallen – you have ended your chariot's ride across the hill of the sky. You stop now, to wash your horses in the sea. Now as the days progress your hearth's fire will slowly be banked for the long winter's night. But even so, we continue to feel your warmth through the harvests, providing for us with your mother's love, through the winter's cold. And we know your warmth will return in your full glory to ride across the sky again.
Saule, We thank you!
<ALL> Saule, We thank you!
  1. Thanking the Dwellers in the 3 Worlds Deities – Earrach, Ancestors - Diana, Worldly Spirits – John.
  2. Bardic Patron - EARRACH
  3. Gatekeeper/gate closes – ME Zaltys, you have warded the Ways for us, and held open the Gates for us! Your magic joined with mine to open the Gates! Now we must close them. Zaltys, withdraw your coils from the Gate. Draw them back, so that the Gates may close. The Way is no longer open – the Gates are closed! We thank you for working with us this Summer Solstice night! Zaltys – we thank you! <All> Zaltys – we thank you!
  4. Tree – ARTOS, Well - ROWAN, Fire – KIM (The Sacred Oak is but a tree, The Sacred Well, is but water, the Sacred Fire is but flame, etc)
  5. Re-ground/re-center - ONYX
  6. Earth Mother - earthing excess power - JOHN
  7. Affirmation of Continuity - As we have done in the past, and as we will do in the future in an unbroken chain of tradition – Long Live the Tradition! EARRACH
  8. Clear-cut ending – Nine Knells - ONYX

Still working on this blogging thing.... sort of....

Well, it IS true that I've worked on many of the topics I posted about over a year ago.....  I just haven't been writing about it *here*.  Still a work in progress...  Going to work on this even more.   Not like I've got many readers, though really, that sets up the whole chicken and egg dilemma, and 'if you write it, they will come" scenario....

I do have a site that I like very much for my Living Earth Reptile Encounters, though that too is a work in progress and very much still under construction.  I guess I just spend way too much time on facebook, LOL.

More reptile related things I will post on a blog on the LERE site, though I'll either repost it here too, or at least link to it....

Anyhow, that site is www.livingearthreptileencounters.weebly.com, and artwork I've posted can be found on my DeviantArt site:   Druid-Lassair.deviantart.com....

I'm going to play to the opposites, and as we approach the Winter Solstice, post a ritual I wrote for this past Summer Solstice.......


My "controversial" views on climate change

I have a Bachelor's degree in Geology, and have studied the rock and fossil records. I have studied the 5 prior global extinction events, glaciology and paleoclimatology. Am I an expert?  No, but I am informed on incredibly relevant info that most 'green types' aren't aware of...

The one thing that is truly unequivocal, is that the climate of the planet Earth changes. It always has changed, and always will change, whether we humans are here or not. Often radically and swiftly. Humans have very, very little to do with it. We weren't here for the prior 5 major extinction events (all of which were related to a change in climate. Humans are no more or less the cause of this one, than the dinosaurs were the cause of their mass extinction - there was climate change then too, and much current thought on the subject is that any asteroid/comet impact wasn't the primary cause, but more of a 'nail in the coffin').

There is just as much evidence that we are entering into another deep glacial period (we are actually currently in an ice age - we're just in an interstitial period between extents of the ice. Geologically speaking, an ice age is a state of the planetary climate during which there are ice caps at the poles - but ice ages are NOT the normal state for the planet. At most times of the planet's prehistory there was no ice at all at the poles!

So if the ice caps are melting, and sea levels are rising, then it may be the planet  Earth returning to it's normal state for awhile.  Or, this could be just another mild warm up before going into the deep freeze again.  The fact that a recent NASA study proved that the other planets in our solar system have showed the same degree of heating, indicates that the sun just went through some changes as well - changes that are affecting all of the planets - not just ours.  Both events can even occur simultaneously - going into another ice age extent, while the sun is heating up the planet.  One will simply offset the other, until one or the other wins out.  There are cycles upon cycles just within the earth's orbit, and how they line up, either offsetting or magnifying their effects determines extremes of climate change, global extinction events, etc... - ie. the 'fate of the planet'.  For more information on this, look up 'Milankovitch cycles'. Then add in the changes in the Sun's intensity, and the climate change thing becomes that much more complex....

So this may sound callous, but if the current "climate changes" inconveniences a few billion of us upright apes, and changes ecosystems for many others of the indigenous wildlife, well, that doesn't really mean anything on a global geologic scale.  It may be a shame that everyone's favorite cute and cuddly species X may go extinct - but remember that the vast majority of species to evolve on this planet already are extinct, and humanity had nothing to do with that either.

Now that all being said - that doesn't mean we should all go and rape and pillage the planet, because "it doesn't matter".....  Far from it.  But don't buy into all the hype (on either 'side') regarding climate change....

Look for more climate and green related posts to come......

Future plans for this blog, etc.....

Originally posted Dec. 4th, 2010 at 6:19 AM

So yeah, kinda like my artwork, everything's kinda fallen by the wayside this year. Well, what with finding the love of my life, building that relationship, losing my job, and then moving in with said love - that's a saga in itself for sure! .... But it tends to mess with the patterns of ones life, and start new ones... So it's definitely a "net gain", LOL... Well since writing and creating art, hadn't been a steady pattern for me anyways, perhaps now's a good time to start one.... Well, right before the holiday bustle is probably not the *best* timing, but I'm going to try working with it anyways.

This blog is going to be a total mishmash of stuff. I will try to keep tagging everything appropriately. This will be part of my Druid beliefs and research, herpetoculturist, artist and writer. I have to start acting on some of these ideas in my head.

This, and working on my Living Earth Reptile Encounters website are going to be my priorities after my jobsearch and caring for my animals. So we'll see how this goes.

Things I will be working on:

Sacred serpent research - snake/serpent/dragon research, mostly from an IE point of view, but throwing in some mythology from the regions of the world where my pets come from, so North America, Africa, Asia and Australia. Yeah, that's not to bad - just serpent myth from *everywhere*, LOL!

Of particular interest is the IE association of offering milk to sacred serpents, a practice that is found from India all the way to Ireland, and is why in America, we have snakes called "milksnakes".

Another interest is the Rainbow serpent, and it's significance in Australia, Africa, the Caribbean, and Native Americans, and whether or not there is similar myth in the IE realm. Note that I am not a syncretist, so this will be a compare/contrast, and see if I can test for "cross pollination" of myth, beyond the actually documented cross overs, such as West African slaves bringing their Rainbow Serpent myth to the Caribbean with them....

Serpent healing - resources and research on snakes and serpents in healing modalities... while I will include venom research for modern medicines, this is not my primary area of interest... namely, the Greek healing temples dedicated to Aesculapius, the snakes associated with the Staff of Aes. and kept in the temples, and their role in healing. Also included will be information about a Israeli spa that works with snakes in massage, snakes and other herps working in AAT (Animal Assisted Therapy), and more. Included is development of energy healing (ala Reiki) modality that works with live pet snakes, distance & 'hands on' ritualized healing energy work with serpents (referring back to rituals used in Greek healing temples), working with snakes and other reptiles as "familiars"...

Expanding to working with other animals in energy healing and/or 'familiars', totem/spirit animal work, etc.... dogs (also worked with in ancient Greek healing temples), cats, rabbits, birds, other reptiles, etc.....

Deer totem and Flidhais, the Irish deer goddess. Investigation of Flidhais, 'fairy deer & fairy deer maidens', hunting Otherworldly deer, the Great Hunt, the Deer Goddess as Hunter and Hunted, Antlered Women, Flidhais - the 'lusty' Diana, deer led chariot, and milking deer - survival, or knowledge of reindeer herding (Saami) in Ireland?, Effect of the finding of Irish Elk antlers within the landscape.... Comparison of Red deer (stag/hind), to NA wapiti ('elk'), European 'elk' or elch to NA moose, roe deer (buck/doe) to NA white & blacktailed deer and mule deer.

Comparisons between European species and N American species - and how it all works out for totem or animal oracle work, etc. As in, how does one work with Coyote in an IE context considering there aren't coyotes in Europe... Buffalo/bison does NOT have to be worked with in a NA Indian perspective - there is a species of bison in Europe - the European bison or wisent.

I'll blog at some point about my views on nature spirits, domestic and exotic pets, meat eating and using animal products (skins, bones, leather, etc...) and my Druid path.

More scientific stuff (some of which will be blogged on my Living Earth Reptile Encounters website (www.living-earth.webs.com), but will either be cross posted here, or linked to:

African house snakes: describe the animals I have and compare to the little bit of info out there (that all conflicts with each other) and try to ascertain which species I have... right now, I think I have 3 different species, but the available info conflicts on which species names get attached to which set of physical characteristics.

Write about some of the oddball reptiles I've kept in the past, keep now, or hope to keep in the future - Xenocrophis vittatus or striped keelback, Amphiesma stolatum or buff striped keelback, Japalura sp. likely splendida or neon green dragon/dragon agama, mountain horned dragon, flying geckos, Chrysopelea ornata and C. paradisii, Caribbean anoles, like A. cybotes, A. coelustinus, A. equestris, A. garmani, Draco volans or flying dragon, Acanthosaura or ackie monitor, Cordylus sp. or armadilllo lizards, jeweled or ornate curlytails, and plated lizards - G. flavigularis, and G. major, and related species, Dasia smaragdina or emerald tree skinks, Dasypeltis inornata or Olive egg eating snake......

I will probably also talk more about the right to keep exotic pets, and the fight against animal rights activists, my interest in primitive domestic breeds - esp. those that would have been kept by the IE hearth cultures, etc....

So, MUCH more to come.

Worldly Spirits Invocation

Worldly Spirits of Nature

Spirits of Place that inhabit stone and pool,
Broadest plain and loftiest mountain,
Dwellers Under the Hill,

Join us here, we give you honor and offerings!

Spirits of the Green, Growing World,
Fungi, evergreens, and flowering plants,
Smallest mushroom to mightiest sequoia,

Join us here, we give you honor and offerings!

Spirits of the Creatures,
Who swim the Waters, fly the Skies, and tread the Land,
Tiniest microbe to mightiest whale,

Join us here, we give you honor and offerings!

Worldly Spirits of Nature:
Join us here, we give you honor and offerings!

Struggling towards 'Right Livelihood'

I currently find myself struggling with the concept of 'right livelihood'.  Or rather, I am *still* struggling with it.  My working career thus far has seemed like one giant agony to endure after another, and that's considering that I *like* GIS and making maps, and the fact that I did meet some great friends along the way, not to mention my immanent fiance. I just can't deal with the office/corporate baggage that comes with it.  I really wish I could - I would be much more successful if I could just play the game, and leave it at the office.  But I just can't - I don't have those skills, I don't have that kind of 'climb the corporate ladder' ambition, nor do I want those kinds of responsibilities.  Maybe that makes me..... hmm, many things, lol; but I can't help but feel in my heart that there is something else out there for me to do.  The problem is *what*.

I am struggling (joyfully, mind you, but still struggling) with Living Earth Reptile Encounters.  To make it work, how I want it to work.  Others do it full time, so I think that I can too, but even still, getting the motivation to get the customers the way I would like to, is evading me.

I also want to work on my art, to see if I can sell some, take commissions, etc.  There is also my work on healing modalities involving the Greek Asklepios/Hygeia healing temple.  In fact, I'm even looking into acquiring some of the 3 species of European snake that were the objects of such veneration - but I fear that ophidiophobia will be too strong for customers to overcome. Animal assisted therapy, animal healing modalities (Reiki, accupressure, Tellington Touch, etc), and Animal Behaviorist are some things I am considering pursuing ....  but I also admit to some nagging scepticism involving Reiki, that was reinforced by some pagan friends whose opinions I respect.  But that musing/rant about the dichotomy of pagan 'skills' vs. New Age 'skills' I'll save for another post......

I've dreamt of running a pet store, but I do not have the capital to start one.  Naturalist, environmental educator, museum or zoo jobs in my area are either nonexistent or they pay very poorly.  With the price of gas at $3.99/gal., I need it to be more than a break even job.

I feel very much in a rut, frozen in place.  A recent(ish) omen at a dragon ritual reinforces this. drawing from a dragon tarot deck, but not being too familiar with tarot myself, I depended upon the expert seer's interpretation as well as the information looked up later from the book that came with the deck.  I drew the King of Coins. Abundance, Wealth and Sovereignty.  A kingdom to be ruled.  Sounds good, yes?  But then there's this: the slowest moving of these cards - movement at a glacial pace, requiring patience.  Followed by:  But don't rest on your laurels - get moving w/new projects.  Glacial pace, but get moving. Thanks, LOL.  On the card the king dragon holds symbols of wealth and power. At the base of his tree there are great piles of treasure from ages past, meaning the attainment of one's objective.

I've never really been known for my patience.  So I guess I have to get moving with those new projects, LOL!