Here’s my usual mid-month Newsletter. You might like to note I also send out a monthly astrology column at the start of every month: this is high quality astrology for the ‘Happy Birthday Sign’ for that month, plus its ‘Year Ahead’, and then a monthly forecast for all 12 Signs, so look out for my 1st September Newsletter on Virgo Man and Virgo Woman and my Astrology Prediction Column too. You can subscribe to my Newsletter and also to my Blog.
In this Newsletter, there’s news about my up-coming novel ‘Druid’; the effects of Venus being debilitated in Vedic Astrology from August 11th to September 16th, and Mars debilitated at the same time from August 18th to 5th October; there’s news about our local groups: The Silsden Druid Group and the Munay Ki Support group (also offering skype connection); there’s thoughts on Rowan in the Ogham Celtic Tree Alphabet and an interesting thought on Odin making entities manifest from the Void when he seized the Rune alphabet hanging on the World Tree, Yggdrassil, and I also recommend a Tarot Pack: Brian and Wendy Froud’s ‘The Heart of Faerie Oracle’.
1. My new novel: DRUID
I am loving writing this, though sad I don’t get enough time. I channelled 8,300 words on the first day. Basically the novel is set on the slopes of Croagh Patrick Mountain in Connemara County Galway in the far west of Ireland where my birth family live, and on the bank of Lough na Corra below the mountain. The Mountain is fulcrum in the history of Ireland and all the lands the Irish have gone to in the Irish Diaspora, because St Patrick spent his 40 days and night on the top of it before heading out to ‘convert’ Ireland to Roman Catholicism. The manuscripts sate that he had to fight Corra the ‘she-demon’ or spirit of place, of course, and he was even engulfed in her jaws for a while, but he vanquished her and consigned her to the bottom of her lake – And then he bargained successively with God for the Souls of the Irish!!! It is interesting to reflect why the Irish fell so totally to Roman Catholicism, and to the conquest of the Normans and then the British, and horrifying to read of the story of the deforestation of Ireland: where there is now bog around Lough na Corra (and over so much of Ireland) was once lovely forest, but it was deforested over the centuries by the Bronze Age and Iron Age Irish, and then the Normans declared the woodlands royal prerogative and felled them and then the British felled vast quantities, and the result is bleak moor and bog-land.
And I do have a personal connection with the Mountain: my mother was given the penance by the priest of walking barefoot to the summit in 1949 because she had given birth to me.
But this is the location of the novel: back to the story. The hero, Cian, in 2,113 AD spends his time in the wilderness there, but finds his manhood and his spiritual vision and one-ness with the land and connects with Corra and goes on to win the inspiration of the Druids. The heroin, Aislinn, leaves the neat white robed court Druid College in 300 BC and finds herself in a forest Druid school of wise women and herbalists and healers. And, yes, they meet – to find their destiny and power in a Druid path that is not mere ritual, and not only the path of the shamanic wise man/woman, but magical re-forging of self as well.
2. Tarot Pack: Brian and Wendy Froud’s ‘The Heart of Faerie Oracle’
I came across this Tarot pack by ‘chance’ recently in Waterstone’s and after agonising, felt I must get it, and I am so glad I did. It proved to be very good in alerting to shadow stuff, and when it is right to follow your inspiration, and has proved totally spot-on accurate in client readings I have done. It’s faerie shadowland call shimmers and is beautiful.
3. The Silsden Druid Group
The next meeting of the Silsden Druid Group is on Wednesday 21st August at 7.30 (every third Wednesday of the month) at the Quaker Meeting House, Keighley, where I will be telling the Story of Taliesin, and we will look at the deep meaning of the characters and facets of the story: our shadow (Morfran/Afagddu), our inspiration (the three drops), Our contact with liminality (Morda) and much, much more. Wonderful magic stuff!
4. Munay Ki Empowerment Support Group
The next meeting of the Munay Ki Empowerment Initiates Support Group is on Wednesday 28th August at 7.30 (every fourth Wednesday of the month) at the Quaker Meeting House, Keighley. And please do note we are setting up Skype contacts for members who live long-distance or abroad so they can join in the germinating of the seeds that are the nine rites of Munay Ki with other members. I cannot recommend initiation into Munay Ki highly enough. It is the healing, wisdom and empowerment of the shamanic Laika people of Peru brought to the West by Alberto Villoldo. See our website: www.munaykiempowerment.com for details. I have been undergoing great healing since I received Munay Ki initiation: firstly because, having received the first of the nine rites, the Healer’s Rite, I stumbled into juicing as part of my diet and feel energy I have not felt for years. And secondly, because I was since Munay Ki initiation, detached from serving work places that were a drain on me and my work has flowered enormously since, and thirdly because (building on the Seer Rite) I am perceiving clearly how I have given my power away and devalued myself (a residue of adoption) and so am more making my stand for who I am and what I want to express that. In other words, so many of my key karmas are ripening now. We have had fifteen people come to us for this initiation and have started a monthly support group in Keighley Quaker Meeting house. If you do feel drawn, it would be most lovely to work with you. You can come to us for a couple of days, or you can gather a group and we can come to you, or if you live local you can have initiations more spread out.
5. Ogham Celtic Tree Alphabet: Rowan
As I look out into my back garden now, I see three Rowan Trees loaded with red berries. And this reminds me of Rowan, the 2nd letter in the Ogham, the Celtic Tree Alphabet of the ancient Irish Druids: Luis. In the certificated distance learning course system I teach, the Ogham Letters are not only understood in terms of the energy of the tree they each depict. They are also understood as pathways across the Otherworlds of the ancient Celts. And so I teach Rowan as the 5th Journey. The first four journeys radiate out over four paths from our divine centre in the centre of Middle Earth, but the 5th path, Rowan, is the first of the paths leading to the Celtic Underworld. Rowan is such an utterly beautiful tree with its feathery leaves, its cream-white flowers and red berries, it is rightly seen as entry to the realms of fairie. And so we can use it to find within us Faerie energy, flame, radiance, quickening, delight, psychic, visionary, magical protection, a ward. We can use it as a gateway to Visionary Journeys and creative emotional expression. Above all it is the principle of PROTECTION. But there is a flip-side to this principle: we do need to recognise what it is within us that might cause us to need Protection. Are we weak in some way? Are we deluded? Working with Rowan teaches us to avoid anything dark or spiritually negative or that detracts from your acting as your true self. We need to examine whether we are prone to seduction and develop protection against that (remember Hawthorne whose blossoms are so seductively pretty we could say it was our favourite tree and ignore the fact that the thorns behind the blossoms are vicious. I fell for that one for years not aware there are people like this!!!) And on the Rowan pathway down to the Underworld, we may meet its Being: Leanan Sidhe is utterly beautiful. She inspires and challenges. And above all her eyes are like mirrors. Look into her eyes to see the truth or to see how deluded we are! To get to the Rowan Path we leave our Divine Centre and walk across Middle Earth along the swampy misty Alder Path of psychic powers to the North East Watchtower of Middle Earth on the shores of the limitless surrounding ocean and then we take the Rowan path that runs down from Middle Earth to the North East watchtower of the Underworld, arriving between Tir fo Thuin, the land of death and Tir na m’Ban the land of women and love. This is Journey 5 of my Ogham course. See: www.earthstarweb.com
6. Runes, the alphabet of the Ancient Norse: entities from the unmanifest
I also teach a certificated distance learning course on the runes, and I was meditating beside the North Sea yesterday on the entities whom Odin drew forth from the unmanifest to be represented by the Runes. The history of the Norse states that Odin hung in pain and self-sacrifice from the branches of the World Tree Yggdrassil until he plucked forth the alphabet of the runes, and when the vision came to him, screaming their names in startled cry, in galdr, he fell to the ground, screaming out the rune shapes he had seen in the branches and twigs of the sacred Ash Tree and the deep meanings held in each Rune. And it came to me that each of the Runes has behind the physical shape of the cryptic shape of the Rune etched in wood by the Norns and by all thereafter, each of the Runes has behind it an entity that it expresses. For Odin went down to the realms of the unmanifest to retrieve the meaning of the runes. And so for example he unleashed from the unmanifest the Joy Bringer who stands behind the Rune Wynn, the Hag of Winter who stands behind Nauthiz, and so on.
And what is the unmanifest? Well, I feel that Norse spirituality is wonderfully rich in its sense of the unmanifest, as is Hinduism (indeed the creation myths of the two have similarity, for example the cosmic cow called Audhumla by the Norse but called Aditi by Vedic Hinduism). There is a wonderful sense of the immense validity and power of the Unmanifest in the Seeresses’ Prophecy, the Voluspa Saga. Ginnungagap is the Void, the unmanifest. So is Hvergelmir the source of Niflheim. And the First Being, Mimir, who formed in Ginnungagap as the union of Fire and Ice is in the unmanifest. Mimir is the Dream Time. And, horrifically, Odin slew Mimir to create order and hierarchy and discrimination. There is deep meaning in this. If we are not in contact with the unmanifest, the dream time, our lives can become inauthentic and artefacts, as doomed as the Seeress revealed was the wondrous hierarchy of the Aesir Gods. All this is deep, but very important.
Here is an extract from my Novel Rune Magic, as with all my novels available in both Paperback or on Amazon Kindle from Amazon:
Declan, the hero of the novel is reading the words of the Seeress: she whom Odin rose from her grave mound because he had heard the wonderful gleaming Aesir Gods were doomed and he would go to all lengths to seek to find if there was a way that the prophecy could be averted. Here, the Seeress speaks. I studied Old Norse (and indeed Anglo-Saxon as an undergraduate at Oxford in the late 1960s/early 70s and this part of the novel which draws on the Saga is my own translation. ‘Would you know more? And what?’ was the traditional challenge cry of the Norse Scald or Bard:
‘Odin, High One, All Father, Father of the Slain, you ask that I should declare the primordial history, I who know the beginning, and before that. I who know the end. And what will happen later! Listen while I speak it: ‘Unformed, chaotic, was the Abyss, the Void. The Void, Ginnungagap.
‘Would you know more?
Declan stared the challenge at his spell-bound audience, then continued to declaim the contents of the iridescently now flaring tablet. ‘The First World: Muspellheim is created
‘Eventually! To one side of the void, Ginnungagap, in the endless empty darkness,
There stirred a spark: The First Spark manifested: Elemental Fire
Spark was fanned to flame. Flame grew to inferno. Inferno turned to magma flare. And in the lava-heat and fire, the first world grew, The Fire World, first of Nine: Muspellheim.
Then forged from fire, Musspelheim’s great guardian arose: the Fire Giant:
Surt. Surt of the mighty flaming sword.
‘Would you know more?
‘The Second World: Niflheim is created
‘To the other side of Ginnungagap, a place of endless night and immaculate coldness: Niflheim was formed, Second of the worlds. Niflheim: realm of ice and fog.
And at its centre lay the roaring, seething tarn of Hvergelmir, from which twelve icy gelid rivers flowed.
‘Would you know more?
‘The emergence of the First Being: Mimir
‘Over endless aeons, the essences of two worlds leached. They met in freezing Ginnungagap.
‘Gelid waters flowed to the Abyss from Hvergelmir, Whose icy blasts created glaciers. Huge blocks of ice rolled downward with continual thunder
Into the impenetrable Chasm
‘Sparks of Muspelheim too, showered the Abyss
‘And from this slow union of opposites, of Fire and Ice, amid the ice blocks of the Chasm,
Arose The Primordial Being:
‘Mimir’s was the Dream Time,
Huge union of Fire and Ice, Mimir’s mind was mystic, submerged in dream. Not knowing past nor future. Giant consciousness, inexpressible, ocean-like. The eternal now.
7. Shamanic Healing
I offer three levels of Certificated Shamanic Healing Distance Learning Courses. Level 1 offers teaching of four shamanic healing methods. Level 2 offers teaching of three more methods plus a piece of healing work with a client or volunteer. Level 3 is all about shamanic healing. You can see details of these courses at the foot of the shamanic healing page on my website: www.earthstarweb.com. Here’s a little about Spiritual Intrusion Healing. Spiritual intrusion can take the form of a localized pain, illness or condition, or a pervasive unwellness, and can be thought of as negative spiritual energy lodged in our body-energy systems. It often shows up diagnostically in our astrology birth chart. We are prone if we are sensitive and psychic and open, or if we are burned out and depleted. The condition can be self-generated: we keep launching and reinforcing a negative energy attack on ourself. Or spiritual intrusion can also be caused by negative energy thought forms being sent at us by someone else: implanted negative words for example. Spirit possession comes into this: it is also a form of spiritual intrusion. The healing of this is often called Shamanic Extraction. But there is also a most powerful form of healing using the rites, lineages and power animals of Munay Ki that can dramatically clear spiritual intrusions: it is called ‘Illumination’ : perceiving, sucking out and then spiritually replacing the poison held in a chakra. In this work, the spiritual intrusion is removed. The client can be given spiritual, journeying or ceremonial work afterwards to maintain the new wholeness and sustain psychic shielding.
8. Venus and Mars both Debilitated now
Venus and Mars are both Debilitated now. Venus is debilitated in Vedic Astrology from August 11th to September 16th (because Venus has transited into Vedic sign of Virgo) and Mars is debilitated at the same time from August 18th to 5th October, because Mars is about to transit into the Vedic Sign of Cancer.
But I personally noticed I was feeling really sad from August 11th, with sad things coming up from the past, and this could be expected when Venus is retrograde, because I personally have Sun and two other planets (Mercury and Ketu the South Node of the Moon) in the Vedic sign of Libra which Venus rules, and Venus is anyway Fallen in my Navamsha Chart of Marriage and Soul in Vedic Astrology.
But everyone will need to watch out about being dissatisfied or overcritical in relationships when Venus is Debilitated. The results you get from Venus during this period may well be good, but your consciousness or ‘mind’ may well view them unhappily or critically.
With Mars being Debilitated from August 18th we may well be negatively assertive and over-emotional or explosive and destructive of structure and necessary routine and direction, but the higher call of Mars (or any planet) being debilitated, is to learn to understand that planet’s energy better: in the case of Venus love; in the case of Mars assertion, failing to compromise, losing our sense of humour.
It is best to bear in mind that the lower manifestation of both Venus and Mars debilitated in a relationship could be a very destructive combination, disrupting Relationships, being picky, and wrongly feeling hard to please and emotionally frustrated, hard-to-please and blaming. Love relationships are a combination of Venus + Mars. When both Venus and Mars are debilitated, be careful to watch the ‘mind’ and behaviours in loving relationship.
9. Which is best: Vedic or western Astrology?
People query whether Vedic or western astrology is the most revealing, I would say: the combination of both is a must.
Vedic Astrology is centrally geared to our incarnational life purpose, karma and its unfoldment.
Western astrology at its best gives deep psychodynamic perception and possibility for transformation, and understanding the impact of the energies of the outer planets discovered since the formulation of Vedic astrology is also a must: Chiron, our existential wound in the healing of which we can become the healer of others, and the outer planets (the Gods of Change): Uranus, Neptune and Pluto
Note that, generally speaking, the sidereal zodiac of Vedic Astrology is far more sure and accurate and powerful than the tropical zodiac of western astrology (but of course a lot can be said about this issue).
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NOVELS: Read Michael’s Spiritual Novels: Read Michael’s Visionary Spiritual Novels in both Paperback or on Amazon Kindle: Rune Magic, Sacred Earth, Vision Holder Munay Ki, Munay Ki Protection.
And coming Soon: Druid, The Backpacker’s Guide to the New Spirituality 2014 and Ogham Web. See: www.inspirationalnovels.org .
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The Newsletter at the beginning of each month is the Sun Sign Astrology Forecast for the month, and the mid-month Newsletter is Munay Ki Shamanism, Inspirational Novels, Ogham, Runes, Druid path and our local groups.
READINGS: Contact Michael for your individual Birth Chart, Relationship or Prediction Astrology Reading. You get a Recording of the interview, reports, charts and emailed or written question/answer/discussion after the reading if you wish. Visit his Starwheel Astrology website to learn more. www.starwheelastrology.com
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