I actually heard about this young woman by accident. I was researching something online when I found an article describing her tragic (yet heroic) death. What’s worse is that the MAGA crowd seems intent on using her as a symbol for their hate speech against Black Lives Matter. James Woods even being so disgusting as to call the unarmed protesters violent and saying they should be more like her.
Yes we all should. And maybe Woods needs to start being like her by practicing humility and trying to help other people. Since she was a natural care giver and “Mama Bear”. The poor child doesn’t need people politicizing her death. What she needs is help to rest in peace, by helping her family.
So please consider doing whatever is necessary to donate money to her family. Burying a child is not normal. It never will be. So let’s try to help her family make this less painful than it already is. Please donate even a dollar.
“Raina was loved by her family and friends. Raina loved cooking with her grandma also she loved helping take care of her siblings and cousins Raina drowned saving her younger cousins. All help will be going to help pay for all costs associated with her funeral and my family with everything. Sorry Im not great at talking about being in need but right now as we are all hurting from this loss of one of our young family members Thank you for all the support,”
Many in my personal life who read this blog are already aware of this. But last Tuesday my grandfather Juan had passed away. My grandfather did not have an easy life. He had a life marked by pain and by isolation. John Donne said that man is not an island. But with respect, he never met my grandfather.
And while his poem praised human unity, very few humans ever lent him a hand. He was born out of wedlock to a Babalawo and to a white woman of Spanish blood. A woman with a deep interest in the Occult. She loved her Babalawo despite the fact that he was a married man. The two conceived my Abuelo Juan.
His uncles hated him. Because his father was biracial, they told him he wasn’t really a part of their family. Instead he was a “negro they found in a hill somewhere and took pity on”. This was Cuba before the Revolution. My great grandmother had to hide him on that farm with her uncles and mother.
A child born out of wedlock and born of two ethnically different parents. It was a scandal and a shame for the family. And especially for early Cuba. My grandpa had to go through beatings and emotional abuse until he became an adult. His grandmother to her credit, loved him.
And didn’t care that he was mixed. She loved him and took care of him and defended him from his uncles. And was always making sure that he was alright. His mother would visit him on the weekends. He always blamed his father for everything.
Said his father was too much of a coward to tell him who he really was. My family said that his mother kept his existence a secret. She was afraid to ruin his father’s life. My grandfather spent a lot of time alone. He had his friends but he loved his solitude.
He absorbed himself in books, in poetry, in history and politics, and in writing. He was a bit of a ladies man and seduced many woman. He even warned me to be careful with any Cuban girls I date. Because they could accidentally be related to me. Which would put a dent in my dating life to be sure.
But despite all the womanizing he did, there was one person he seemed fixated on since his early years : my grandmother. In his youth, he fell in love with her. She was 17 and he was 14. And while she didn’t pay attention to him at the time, he always vowed that one day she would be his wife. She married a violent and corrupt Batistiano Captain of the police.
He beat my grandmother and was responsible for war crimes against the people before and during the Revolution. My grandfather was a soldier of lower rank under this man. He waited for the bastard to drink himself to death so that he could approach my grandmother and propose to her. And she said yes. Something I don’t think she ever thought she would do because of the age difference.
They were both involved in the failed Counterrevolution on the island and ultimately divorced. But he still loved my grandma. So much that before she died he almost seemed to sense it. And he said to my mother,
“Hija, if one day your Mother should die, please don’t tell me. Because I know I’ll fall apart if I know. Just tell me she’s still alive,”
Unfortunately, he did find out and he went into a state of shock. Which led to him having two strokes and developing Alzheimer’s. Just as he told us, my grandmother’s death undid him. He seemed to go into an accelerated physical and cognitive decline in just months. He was rapidly turning into someone else.
Each month was like a decade for him, and soon the man who helped raise me as a child was disappearing before me. When I was a boy, my grandpa was one of the best and greatest people in my life. He defended me from my father when he got abusive. And asked my mother what the hell was going on and what she planned to do about it. He warned me about the dangers of cult brainwashing.
You see I was raised in a Fundamentalist church and he didn’t want me to blindly follow the doctrines of men, disguised as ‘divinity’. He claimed to be an agnostic, and once said that he believed,
“In the God who created Heaven and Earth. But I don’t know who the fuck this Jesus guy was. He was probably a delinquent and that’s why they crucified him,”
To my very Christian and very horrified mother. He also “shit on the Seven African Powers” and “Shit on every Saint in Heaven!” whenever he was angry. I always laughed and he couldn’t help but laugh with me. He would also write vulgar poems about Christian people, including a certain sect that knocks on doors to preach the good news.
“The Jehovah’s Witnesses say that soon Armageddon will come, but I laugh, I dance, and I shit on the Mother of God,”
I remember that when he took me out to eat at a Cuban diner. It was the very first memory of him I have. I think it was our first outing. He gave me an unlit cigarette and put it in my mouth and said,
“There, now you’re a man damn it!”
I think I was 6 or 7 at the time. My Mom went apeshit when she found out. It was awesome! Since that time we would go together to Little Havana where we would hang out with his friends on the side walk. Where we would work together on the farms with the animals. We would even make deliveries to places of bird food and sometimes the unsavory deliveries of animals to be sacrificed by Santeros.
Something I vehemently oppose to this day despite being a Santero myself. I would actually wake up at 5am on Saturdays to go with him to have a good breakfast and to plan out our day. We’d go to a Santero Botanica where I would go to help him bring in merchandise. We’d go see old friends of his, which included a couple that got married thanks to him (long story). Other times we would meet random strangers and talk over cortaditos about random things.
Oh, and then there was the Cuban-Chinese Restaurant. He’d go there not to eat Chinese food. He went there because they had “the best rice and stake he’d ever eaten,”. My mom used to tease him about it. “What? It’s true,” he’d say.
Mostly it was the solitude we both enjoyed. I loved talking to my grandpa about everything. We had no secrets. He quickly learned that he wasn’t so happy by himself after all. I was his partner.
I remember spending an hour eating cold pizza in his old truck. The windows down, the breeze of a nice day. The grey skies that promised a dark and stormy day. Oh how we both loved that kind of weather. Or at least I do.
Maybe he just enjoyed it because he knew I did. I remember when he bought me my first black leather jacket for the cold. I wore it even until the leather went bad and when I was hot. People thought I was crazy or that I was trying to be a punk rocker or something. But really I just enjoyed it.
When it was cold and early in the morning we would go to a diner and have a good breakfast. Then just enjoy the cold weather with a hot cafe con leche and eggs and ham. I knew all of his friends and they knew me. But despite that, he was silent as a tomb about his most private affairs. I dare say I probably know more about some of the things he went through or experienced than most people.
Only my mother knows more.
As a teenager, he loved the cemetery for example. He would spend hours immersed in the silence and the solitude. He’d even go there after school to do his homework. It was also one of the few places where he felt truly at peace. Death didn’t really scare him.
I’m sure like a normal man he feared the pain. But the act of being freed from this world did not bother him. What he feared if anything, was a life un-lived. That gusto for lifetook the form of travel, strange adventures with friends, the occasional brawl (even with younger men, he always won), affairs with younger and older women, and a lot of laughter. He even had an affair with his land lord’s wife.
I remember facepalming myself and going “Ay Abuelo tu eres tremendo,” (Oh Grandpa, you’re something else). I figured he’d end up having to find a new home. But as it turns out that is not what happened at all. He discovered that the man was beating his wife. So one day in their kitchen with both present he promptly said,
“She and I are together now. So, I don’t give a fuck if she’s married to you. She’s not your property. If you touch her again, I am going to crack your skull open and you’ll have a closed casket funeral,”
He said this nonchalantly while both the man and his wife where in the room. The story was told to me by her. That’s how I even know it happened. My grandpa had many flaws, but he loved you and was loyal to you. And he defended you with no care to what would happen to him.
Needless to say, while they were together the beatings stopped. I remember how bizzare that relationship was. That this guy had a tenant he knew was sleeping with his wife. And that the wife treated my grandpa like her husband instead of him. She even cooked breakfast or special foods for him.
My grandpa really seemed to like her. He once told me that talking to her he felt better than if “he fucked the princess of Spain!”. And he meant it too. Which made it funnier. This man could write poems in old Spanish verse yet that’s how he described his personal life.
One time, after he was already sick and looking like a corpse, my mother was “dating” some asshat that had a reputation for hitting women. She didn’t know that when she decided to give him a chance. But grandpa sure did. He sized this guy up, literally looked him up and down. So he looks at my Mom and says,
“Hija what is your size and weight?”
She replied and he said,
“Good! If some piece of shit ever lays a hand on you, you take your fist and you hit him as hard as you can under his chin and fuck up his jaw. He’ll live to regret it,”
The guy laughed nervously. He knew my old man had him pegged nice and good. And even while he was so weakened from his first stroke, that one hard gaze was enough to make even a younger man think twice. This was my second father. In many ways my real father, as he had influenced me in ways that my own could never do.
I remember visiting him at the retirement home for the first time. I took a Lyft to travel from Sweetwater to Miami Springs. I remember it was a beautiful sunny day and I actually enjoyed the little trip. But no one told me, no one warned me about what I would find when I got there. I liked the building, I thought it looked nice from the outside.
I searched for his room in the hallway. That rancid smell hit me all at once. That smell that lets you know there are elders who have not bathed yet. Like a smell of dust accumulating. People who can no longer move on their own.
Who need constant supervision. Then I found his room. He was sharing it with three other people. How can I describe seeing him turn from a strong man, despite his age, into a living corpse? I was shocked to say the least. Holding my emotions in was no easy task
That first day when I got to the Home he had to be placed in and saw him in that bed I hardly recognized him. I’m not exaggerating when I say he looked like death itself. He had lost so much weight, his skin grew so pale as if no blood flowed through his veins. And to make it worse, he couldn’t even stand up anymore. Now he required a wheel chair and a diaper.
Most of his friends weren’t around. He had fallen out of touch with all of them by this time. But not me, I’m your partner remember grandpa? Till the end. I stayed with him all day as he slept. I only left to eat in some little Restaurant around the corner.
I came back and I stayed until 5 or maybe 5:30pm. I knew it was late because night was breaking through. I took another Lyft home and felt mixed up inside. Confused. So, so confused.
I took pictures of him and shared it with my uncle and with my sister. For three years almost without fail myself, my mother, and my sister visited grandpa every weekend. We would bring him Cuban cafe, and chocolate pudding. Sometimes jello. He would devour it and then sing lewd songs aloud.
Mostly he would change the lyrics of Guantanamera to “Juan Cagalera” (Juan Shits alot). He would also sing about a man taking a shit. And that he saw that he had a small gun and a sack with two bullets. My mom was trapped between being embarrassed and laughing at the same time. I’m pretty sure he did it to piss off all of those old society ladies in the home.
The ones who wore fancy pearls and thought they were Spanish aristocrats. One of them was named Daisy. She came up to us to try and complain about my grandpa. My mom quickly defused the situation.
“My what nice pearls you have Daisy!”
“Why thank you child, I’ve had them since I was a little girl,”
Then my grandpa said,
“Coño (damn) they must be over a 100 yrs old. Quick! Run to an Antique Dealer, you’ll be a millionaire!”
My mom, sister, and I tried so hard not to laugh. We went red in the face. And Daisy walked off so pissed we thought she’d have a stroke herself. Gradually, this became the new normal. And my mother said seeing him like this was even worse than watching my grandmother die.
We never thought this would happen to him. We never thought he would end up in a home. We are a family that takes care of our elders. All my other grandparents lived with the family. With their children and grandchildren.
We wanted Abuelo Juan to live with us too. But he was so stubborn. He didn’t want to be a burden on us. He lived on his own and had his own place. But with his cognitive decline, the owners of his building began to tell us that he was falling asleep in the hallways and forgetting where his apartment was.
We never thought a retirement home was where he would end up. It was unheard of in our family. But with each stroke and the growing Alzheimers he needed help only professionals could give him. He’d more or less become accustomed to his new surroundings. He believed it was a new apartment building.
He’d talk with other people but it was just small talk. The only people he really talked to were younger, attractive nurses. He would hit on them and make them laugh with his jokes. And would speak gibberish that he claimed was Arabic or Russian. But he only really came alive when he saw us.
“Pepito Carajo! Que bueno verte,”
(Pepito Goddamn it! It’s great to see you).
He was the only one I allowed to call me that. Pepe is my father. And I hate being seen as similar to him in any way. But somehow my grandpa changed the meaning of the name for me. The last peaceful memory I have of my grandfather was the last time me and my mom visited him.
My sister had already moved to another state. It was a calm Sunday afternoon. Sunny outside and the light coming from the window cast shadows that made it look as if the room were under water. You know what I mean? Like the reflection of water from a pool. He was already almost immobile by this point.
He never wanted to get out of bed now. Although he seemed more alert and happy strangely. He stayed awake talking to us for a bit and asking me how old I was now. And as usual, when I said 33 he would be shocked. He remembered me as I was in my teenage years.
He thought I was 15 again. He started drifting to sleep. And then we left. And that was the last time I saw my grandpa alive. Because then the pandemic hit.
And his retirement home was shut down. My uncle and mom were able to see him through the window and talk to him. Or sometimes talk to him through the phone. He started developing a cough and we began to get worried. We suspected it was the Coronavirus right away.
But they assured us it was a case of pneumonia. Nothing more. They took forever to test him, if that is what they actually did. And claimed he tested negative for the virus. My mom breathed a sigh of relief for the first time that day.
So imagine what it was like the next day to be ordering dinner and finding out that he passed away. My mom said she had felt a heaviness in her heart. That she knew something was going to happen but not what. She had left work earlier that day to give him a visit but no one answered from his room when she called out. Not even a nurse.
Not his usual protests of “shut the fuck I’m trying to sleep!”. Nothing. The nurses claimed they came in with his food and found him dead at 5:30pm. I had to be the one to break the news to his friend from his old job that he possibly died of Coronavirus. The assisted living facility we took him to, had apparently had 106 cases of Covid 19.
We learned about all these cases nearly a week after he died. We were starting to get grounded. We were starting to come to terms with what had happened. Only to watch Univision at 11pm for one of their daily Coronavirus reports and see this.
— Adventures of a Mage in Miami (@MiamiMagus) May 2, 2020
My rage, my pain, my anger. So much hurt in so little time. This had to be the shittiest week of my life. Nothing else could ever compare to this. I used to think my ex leaving me was bad.
I wanted to marry her and have a family. But this was far worse. In fact it set the bar for just how much worse something could be instead of a breakup. Someone you dated leaves you? Big Deal. There’s someone out there for everyone.
You just have to go out and find them. But there are some losses that one never truly gets over. Losing someone that you have loved since you were born, the first person who held you as a baby. That’s a fate worse than death. Or perhaps it is a death of some kind.
It’s as if my life force had been sucked out of body. As if something in the Universe just went cold. I feel numb and almost cold inside. I have had to keep myself from crying and grieving because my mother needs me. She just lost both of her parents now.
She’s not going to see them again for a very long time. Until her time comes to depart as well. I’ve been sleeping on the floor of her apartment so she wouldn’t be alone. And today I heard her talking to her husband (who is stuck in Honduras now). I pretended to still be asleep.
And I heard her crying on the phone. Telling her husband that she’s worried about her brother. Because their Dad’s death has so deeply effected him. That he blames himself for his death. Because he had power of attorney.
Because he trusted the scum from that facility to care for his Dad. That he would be safe and cared for. As mother’s day nears, it won’t be quite the same. For all intents and purposes she’s an orphan now. They have a cliche for this kind of thing.
You know, the one that says that with a person’s passing, the world gets a little dimmer. Well, it’s not a cliche. It’s truth. In Judaism, God is believed to be this gigantic swirling pool of light.
And all of us come from that pool of light. We’re all pieces of Adonai’s great cosmic soul broken down into human form. So when we die, our souls or our light, returns back to the Source. And that Quantum Source is God. Or comes from God.
So when we die, we are dimming the world. Because our light flees this place to go home. We leave the world dimmer and darker than when we first started out because our presence made it a better place. So the dead are not whom we mourn, but ourselves. The dead find peace (usually).
As long as they are remembered, as long as they are not forgotten and the proper rituals and prayers are offered, they are well. It’s only when they are forgotten and unloved that they suffer. No, we mourn ourselves because just a little bit of that light left our world and went back to it’s source. And we are left in a world far less bright, than that which we lived in before. How did I do Abuelito?
Did I succeed at condensing your long, eventful life, into one gigantic post? I found it hard to do. I feel that the Earth has shifted underneath my feet. That my hold over everything is lost. That I am lost. But I won’t mourn you Abuelo, I’ll celebrate you.
We will take our time to grieve yes. But not to feel bad about ourselves. Instead, to heal and to move on. To honor your spirit and your memory. To cherish all the fond memories we have of you.
And to light your way so that you may be with the ancestors. Adios Juan, hasta la vuelta. Until I see you again grandfather. I love you.
If you’ve read my posts before, then you already know that I often divine with patterns. This means that I take random (or seemingly random) bits of information. And from there I actually find patterns which show a bigger picture of events. I’ve done this with Chinese New Year divinations, and African Disapora Divinations as well. Every Month the IFA Priests do their divinations about which of the Orishas (Gods) rule which days, I have paid attention to what happens on those days.
And from there I began to map out the days based on the ruling Gods. Like a do or do not list to avoid trouble. Or to take full advantage of the good energy available for projects or work related issues. I also include any holidays on those days or sometimes not the holidays themselves, but the Astrological shifts happening those days. With all that being said, let me show you what I found for this Month.
If you haven’t read my last post about the Orishas who rule the IFA Calendars, click on it. Otherwise you’ll be confused as Hell. So, Shango and Oya ruled the first day, then it was Obatala, Egungun, Iyami, and Sanpanna, then IFA, Esu, Osun, Aje, Yemaya, and Olokun. Then we get a breather with Ogun, Ochossi, and Orisha Oko. Notice a trend here? Energy in motion is what I am picking up this month.
Constant conflict or battle, dead ends and restarts, etc..we only get one day to chill out before the madness starts again. I believe part of this is the Mercury Retrograde. But the majority of this is what the Babalawos were telling us about in their new year’ divination. This whole year we are being forced to confront our inner demons. Our bad habits.
Our bad luck. Forced to look into reality no matter how painful it is. Forced to confront our darkness. We’re not being given a choice. And to make that point clear as hell, we are suffering another late winter.
I wrote in my Imbolc divinations that light and dark are fighting with no clear winner in the horizon. But, the dark is doing it’s damndest to win. We have corrupt politicians doing power grabs now more than before. We have more plots in Latin America with Bolsonaro and Duque stealing the elections in Brazil and Colombia and now another US backed coup. We have Shinzo Abe in Japan being a corrupt war monger stirring up the pot against North Korea, while ignoring the wishes of his own people.
Even the so called “good guys” like Bernie Sanders, was pushing regime change narratives in Venezuela. And the Democrats are so far to the right, that with the exception of a few things, they might as well be moderate Republicans. So even the people we are told are good, are not actually good. More mass shootings, storms killing people, and mean while we’re being told it’s all naturally and okay. And that’s just the political crap we’re going through.
I’ve recieved a flurry of clients reaching out to me and my Shaman friend over malevolent paranormal activity. No sooner do we help one group of people, than we end up with someone with something far worse. Like seriously, what the hell? I was already helping a friend through a Generational Curse and teaching him how to cleanse and bless his house after we and our spirits helped break the curse and heal his family. Then we had a guy on his death bed practically. At this point we have to take weeklong vacations to rest before being asked to deal with something else.
To further emphasize this : Mercury Retrogade began the day before the New Moon. So, as one Astrologer that I introduced you to said :
“We’re ending things right when we are suppose to begin them,”
Because Retrogrades bring an end to something that needs to go. And New Moons are a begining period where we can start over. So the begining period here, is that we are meant to destroy the structures and monoliths of power that aren’t serving us anymore. I already covered this a few blog posts ago. But it seems based on how I have interpreted the pattern I see in the IFA Calender plus current events that March is a real shirtstorm in the making.
It seems January and February were only leading up to our current situation. These are days of note.
March 5-6 : Double Chtonic power
Retrogrades are mini seasons of the dead. New Moons in Hinduism are considered the time for dark spirits of the dead. Which is why, traditionally, people try to avoid doing things or going to places on this day. Especially after dark. Both these days so close together says to me, that this Retrograde period is a time of extra reaping and extra harmful energies and spirits out there.
March 8th (this Friday) : Double Prosperity
Despite that, Friday actually seems more or less good. That doesn’t mean nothing bad will happen. In this season, even lucky days can flip on you. But Friday is an Ogun, Orisha Oko, and Ochossi day which as I explained last time is normally good luck. It is the 8th day of this Month which is a number for stable prosperity.
However number 8 is also the number for Hermes (Mercury) so I get the feeling that in this current retrograde, Friday will be bad for some and good for others. And even more people will find mixed results on that day. Also, Friday is good for Jobs and making money. Witchcraft for finding work is usually done on Fridays. But given the retrograde, we would have to be careful.
March 9th : Mixed Results
Immediately the next day, we have Sango and Oya. Oya is the gatekeeper for the dead. The guide for souls who need to cross. Saturdays are days to honor the dead in general. And number 9 while it can be prosperous, is also a number for destruction or domination.
In Numerology number 9 can mean slow, but long lasting prosperity. Sango and Oya are royalty. So I don’t know for sure what will come of this day. The good and bad qualities may duke it out or cancel each other out. To mention just how mixed this day is : In Greek religion, 9 is the number of Aphrodite. But in Santeria 9 is the number of Oya.
While Oya does bring prosperity, the retrograde and New Moon just a few days before, and the day itself will probably mean Underworld power on full blast.
Sunday 10th : More Mixed results, but leaning on a peaceful day
Or it should be anyways. It all depends. Sundays are good for white magic and spiritual meditation. This Sunday will be ruled by Obatala, Egungun, Iyami, and Sanpanna. Obatala the white king of Heaven is obviously going to have his influence felt.
But the Iyami Goddesses are known for being violent if offended. Egungun is a dead child of Oya and is the embodiment of all the dead ancestors. And Sanpanna or Sakpata is the lame footed God of disease and cures for disease. Seems like it could lean in any direction.
March 13th : Tripple Cthonic Power, or Mixed Results. You be the judge.
Wednesday is the day of Hermes who is in retrograde form right now. It’s the number 13 which can be good luck or sometimes bad luck. And it is ruled : By Sango/Oya. And again they can bring good luck or bad luck. Depends on their mood.
March 17th Sunday : Begining of Light Week
This is where the good actually comes from the reaping. I felt that Sango and Oya were bringing good energy this day. And it’s also St. Patrick’s day. The days ruled by Obatala and his party and the days ruled by IFA, Esu etc..and their party started to feel lighter and better to me. From this point forward.
I began to feel spiritual light appear.
March 20th : Full Moon, Sun enters Aries/Spring Equinox
Ruled by Orishas Oko, Ogun, and Ochossi. The good energy ia starting to appear en masse. An energitic doorway is open on this day.
March 21 : Thursday (Thor’s Day)
is ruled by Sango and Oya. If you read my last post, you know Sango rules lighting storms like Thor. I felt that Underworld Gods will gain some extra power this day. But, Thursday is good for prosperity magics. And Sango and Oya are both King and Queen.
With Oya being the Matron of the Market place and businesses, and Shango often depicted in statues with black cauldrons of gold. He is King after all. I feel that this is definitely when they will aid with money.
March 22 : Friday
Obatala and his Party, normally give me days of wisdom and spirituality. The number 22 in Angelic Numerology corresponds to the Archangel Raphael. Who teaches knowledge such as the magical uses of herbs (Book of Tobit) and is the Patron Saint of Healing. I feel this day will lend itself well to wisdom, knowledge, and clarity.
March 23-24 : Mostly Good
There’s a partial Chthonic influence on both these days. Saturday because that’s naturally a day for the dead. But I can feel the retrograde dying faster here. It is ruled by IFA, Esu, etc..and it felt like a day of great blessing. The number 23 always reminds me of Psalm 23.
Which I use in special baths for cleansing and blessing. The next day I can feel the retrograde starting to wrap up. I felt a nasty bit of negativity coming out as part of our reaping. But other than that, mostly a good day. Orisha Oko, Ogun, and Ochossi rule here.
And Sundays are meant for good energy as I explained. But it feels off. Dark and gray in the spiritual sense. Murky is the best word for it. That same under world energy feels stronger the next day on the 25th ruled by Sango/Oya but in the retrograde death throes.
March 27th : Extra Blessed
Now at first I thought this was weird as Hell. And I will tell you why : Because the three day lunar festival of the Ancient Greeks is happening here. And the 27th is the first and worst day : Hekate’s Deipnon or feast. Hekate told me when I first started out to celebrate the three day feast the day before the last quarter of the moon at Sunset. I’ve followed her instructions ever since.
Everyone has their own ways for doing this. Many modern practitioners of Hellenismos will do it the day before the astronomical new moon. But back to the point, Hekate’s Feast is a very nasty day. It’s a day when Hekate collects all the nasty energies from every corner in the world and brings it to the crossroads to destroy it all. And part of that, is that she finds all the dark, angry souls of the dead, including murders and suicides and brings them there.
The Hellenic will then go to the crossroads at Sunset with food and drink and leaves it there to appease the dark spirits and the Deity. But now that I am looking back on this, it actually does make sense. The next day : Hermes-Mercury leaves the Underworld and turns direct which ends the retrograde. So the final end of the retrograde is actually this day. Also, Hekate’s Deipnon is a day to spiritually and physically clean the home.
You take the dust to the cemetery and leave the bad energy there. You also confess your sins to Hekate and ask for a clean slate. A sort of absolution. That’s something other practitioners taught me, not my priest. Hekate’s Deipnon goes on the next day till Sunset.
That also makes sense because the actual day it goes direct, Mercury still needs some time to leave retrograde and station direct. And the moment Hekate’s Deipnon ends (which coincides with us leaving retorgrade) it becomes the feast of Noumenia. The new Lunar Month. Which brings positive energy and good fortune and tidings.
I purify and cleanse and ask for good energy to replace the bad.
March 29 : Cleansing and Restoration
Now that said, negative after effects of a Retrograde can still be felt days after it ends. On the third day of the Lunar feast, it’s the day of Agathos Daimon (the Good Spirit). Now Agathos Daimon actually is a name for a Serpent God of Good Luck. He’s married to Tyche (Lady Luck). But as is the case with may Gods and spirits, Agathos Daimon’s name is also a name used for a specific type of spirit.
Particularly a person’s spirit guides. This day is sacred to him, your spirit guides no matter the culture they may be from, and the Heroes of Ancient Greece. The God Agathos Daimon, brings good luck by causing a person to shed their karma and negative or useless traits. Things that don’t work anymore are driven out of your life as a reaping for you to gain good luck. So we just got through a Reaping and we’re going through a final one.
It was explained to me in the Soothsay session that this is similar to giving yourself a final rinse of water before finishing a bath. I was also told that there is a balance of both light and dark happening this day. And it’s ruled by Sango and Oya. Who I saw both glowing gold and pleased in this session when asked about this day.
March 30-31 : Final Blessings, Wisdom
The final two days are ruled by Obatala and company and IFA, Esu and company. We end on a high note with wisdom and clarity after the long reaping of this season. So those are my impressions about this month. Please forgive my weird little divination rants. They tend to come out when I am doing trance work.
I’ll probably read this after it’s posted and go : “What the Fuck?”
As always, take my predictions with a grain of salt. Based on a person’s energy, things could be very different.
For those who don’t know, the IFA Calender is created by IFA Priests who divine who will rule each day of the Month. So the calender is not set. The Gods who rule each day are always different. My perceptions of these days are mine alone. Perhaps someone else with a different personality would view Sango/Oya days as prosperous all the time.
Or an O/O/O day as warlike. These are the following Orishas :
Sango or Shango
God of lightning and fire, masculine sexuality, and magic. He’s also a seer God. His Wife Oya, is the Goddess of the marketplace, storms, winds, change, and she’s the guide to the dead. She leads them to the front door of the Cemetery. So these are both powerful Deities.
And as both King and Queen they personify wealth.
So a day ruled by them may be prosperous or disastrous. Or both, it all depends on the nature of the day. Or how you choose to see it.
Ogun, Orisha Oko, Ochossi
Ex husband of Oya, and brother of Shango. The blacksmith of the Yoruba Orishas. A master of metal and weaponry, every blade made is usually owned by him. Unless he makes it for another God who is then gifted the blade. He also has a powerful responsibility as protector of nature.
After losing his wife to Shango and the drunkenness which caused him to disrespect his family, he exiled himself into the jungles. There he grew to understand nature, appreciate, and love the animals. So, similar to Leshi (Ukrainian Green Man) he is a defender of nature. In Haitian Vodoun he is worshipped as a God of Revolution and Freedom. He is the Loa (Vodoun Deity) who inspired the Slaves and Free people of color to wage Rebellion.
He is acompanied by Orisha Oko and Ochossi. Orisha Oko or the God Oko, is the God of agricultural Prosperity. His altars are always outside of a house near grass or plants. He brings prosperity in the form of crops, food, and other necessary things. Ochossi is a master magician and shaman of the Gods as well as a hunter and enforcer of justice.
The thing all three have in common is nature and prosperity. I personally view a day ruled by them as prosperous. Because Ogun makes things, Orisha Oko grows crops, and Ochossi is a Shamanic Healer. An O/O/O day for me, is always good and actually chill. It’s a day to do whatever you want or to focus on nature and spirituality.
For me an S/O day is usually for major projects, visits to the cemetery, or breaking curses and bad luck (or casting curses). There is prosperity in these days too but becareful.
Obatala, Egungun, Iyami, and Sanpanna
Obatala is the white robed king. Ruler of Heaven, second only to the Supreme Creator Deities. He’s the King of the Gods. Egungun is a child of Oya, Orisha of all the Dead. The collective dead.
This Deity is every dead person who has ever died or will ever die.
The Iyami or “divine and mysterious mothers” are Goddesses of Ashe or divine energy. They are the guides of Olodumare (Mother Goddess) to all of us. They are the pure incarnation of the Aje or first energy. No one can directly make offerings to them. All offerings are done via Elegua.
And Sanpanna or Sakpata is the Lame footed Deity. The God who heals or causes disease. To me, Obatala and Egungun symbolize tranquillity. And the Iyami Goddesses symbolize knowledge. Sanpanna is a Deity who is normally relaxed with me.
I am not afraid of him. Nor does his presence make me feel uncomfortable. So while others would find this to be a turbulent day, for me it is a day of blessings and wisdom. Comfort and an energy toward action of some sort.
IFA, Esu, Osun, Aje, Yemoja, and Olokun
IFA is the spiritual order created by the God Orula. Orula is the Orisha of magic and divination. A powerful sorcerer deity, he created IFA as a science and religion. The science of understanding Fa, Orisha of Destiny. Through sacrifices or Ebbos, it is possible to alter the course of someone’s destiny.
Babalawos or “fathers of mysteries” are the high priests. They even remove Generational or Karmic Curses. And they have been called upon for the removal of evil spirits. They act as intermediaries with the Gods. Esu is also known as Elegua in Santeria and Yoruba practice.
Esu or by whatever name you call him by, is the God of the Crossroads. Messenger and Gatekeeper of the Gods. Protector of the home. Much like like Hestia or any other home protecting Deity, first and last offerings go to him in any ritual. So Esu is the opener of roads.
The one who makes the way clear. He’s also a master magician who has learned the secrets of every single Orisha. The Patakis or religious stories, tell us of how in his child form (he can be a young boy or a grown man) he cleansed the Creation Goddess Olodumare. When she asked him how he came to have this knowledge, the divine child simply answered that he followed the Orishas and learned their knowledge. From that day forward, the mighty Goddess made him the Keeper of the Crossroads.
Giving him a key necklace as a sign of his Kingship over the crossroads. That’s also how he became the messenger of the Gods. So Elegua is one of the most important Deities.
Osun or Oshun is Oya’s mother and one of Shango’s other wives. She is the Goddess of Love, Nature, Rivers, Prosperity, and a Witch Goddess as well. She actually has an incarnation named “Oshun Queen of Witches”. Some have likened her to Aphrodite. And she does have similar qualities.
But, she also carries deep associations with nature that liken her more unto Demeter. As a queen of nature, without Oshun, there could be no life on Earth. When the male Orishas laughed at her and told her she was “too girly” to help build the Earth, she fled. The result was that the Earth started falling apart under their too agressive influence. When they panicked, they went before Olodumare and Olofi (The Supreme Father God and Mother Goddess).
Olodumare quickly figured out why creation was falling apart : Oshun wasn’t there to bring balance. When the Goddess of creation ordered them to find her, they were surprised to see that she actually turned her small corner of the world into a paradise. And that it was functioning without any of them. With Oshun alone, her Ashe or cosmic life energy kept everything working smoothly. The power of the Gods manifest in everyone.
It’s the same energy as the Hebrew Ruach or the Egyptian Ekat.
Yemaya is the Queen Mother of the Ocean. Santeros often call her “the mother of the world”. Because without water, there can be no life. She is also a powerful Witch Deity.
But more than that, she is a Mother Goddess. She watches over Mothers and Catholicism.
Olokun is the Priest (or Priestess) of Yemaya. Some have argued that Olokun is just another Camino (Path) or Avatar of Yemaya. Others say Olokun is a seperate Orisha.
And no one knows what gender Olokun is. Because Olokun no longer appears on land. When Olokun had, dogs chased him/her back into the sea. That legend states Olokun was a woman. But other legends describe Olokun as male.
We’ll never know. Though another school of thought states Olokun is transgender. No that isn’t meant to be a political statement. All Gods and spirits are shape shifters. And Gods in every culture have taken a male or female form. Even Shango has a female Camino/Avatar.
Same with every male and female Deity. Oya can shape shift into a man to ride into battle beside her husband. That’s why she’s called “The Woman who puts on pants to go to War”. An I/E/O/A/Y/O day is a day that feels semi peaceful and semi conflictive. I say this because Yemaya and Oshun have a rivalry going on.
These are simply my impressions of the energy of those days. Tomorrow I will post my divinations on this month.
I have preparied the Imbolc Report on what occured in North America on this day. I observed several divinations on this day both personal and general to what was happening in our world. I created a Brideog or Brighid Doll and gave a bed for Briganti to sleep in while I read her poetry all night. I lit seven candles and prepared one very special candle for her. A long candle stick, often referred to as a “legitimate candle of the dead” by old Santeros from Cuba.
Candle Sticks are apparently the preffered offering for the Dead besides food. I first visited the cemetery I go to and left Oya a nice food offering for her and for Obbá and Yeguá the two Orishas who live inside the cemetery. The reason for this is because one of her festive days is Candlemas. So I asked her to reap all nasty energies. But I also asked her to bless me at the Market place with prosperity and abundance.
This day is used to chase away the spirits of the dead and dark spirits of winter back to the Underworld. So I gave food at the Cemetery as an incentive for the departed and other more dark entities to leave willingly. I asked Oya to take on the task of chasing away the ones who wouldn’t leave of their own accord. I then made my way home. Once I lit every candle, I took a single large candle stick, placed it in a white basin with a little holy water (to snuff the candle out) and then I began taking shots with my phone.
I do this as a form of spirit photography and Sciomancy. Sciomancy is Divination by shadows. The blessed candle will reveal things in the dark through the shadows and tell me the answers to my questions. The pictures revealed dark energies and what I can only describe as Shadow beings exposed by the candle. This had never happened before and I have tried to debunk it a few times by replicating the pictures in the same area with the same type of candle.
The effect could not be replicated. Also, when the candle is snuffed out by the holy water, it’s always gentle. It never makes so much as a hissing noise. This time it made a large pop like a fire cracker. When I took our the left over candle wax to divine, it took on the form of a nasty creature. I didn’t bother to take a picture because it felt nasty.
I disposed of the wax and washed the basin out with more holy water. So far things were not looking good this year. Since then, more signs and omens started appearing even yesterday. That’s why it took me this long to post a blog on it. So let’s start with the Weather.
On the actual day of Imbolc Eve, it was very sunny and fair. Which of course is bad. Because that means winter will stay longer. I prayed and prayed for bad weather. The same day, the US was marshaling their forces all around Venezuela and I expected to hear of an invasion at any moment.
But at Sunset when it officially became Imbolc, I felt tiny drops of cold water as a small, temporary, storm was taking place. It barely lasted a minute or two. But I gave a huge sigh of relief. It was enough to give me hope that winter might leave early this year. Not just so that the violence could stop, but so that the Polar Vortex that is afflicting parts of the country would leave.
People have already frozen to death and these poor animals are being afflicted as well. I wondered if colder weather would happen on Imbolc day. But on the actual day when I brought the Brighid Doll to a sacred pond to complete the festival, it was mostly sunny again. With only a little bit more cold rain drops falling at almost full dark. So, what does this mean? The omens state that it is the matter is inconclusive.
I felt when doing these rituals that the forces of Spring and Winter are still at war with each other. And a clear winner has not been chosen. We know spring will eventually win. But that’s it. Spring might come early, or winter may stay longer.
Only time will tell. This is in line with what the Quimbanderos and Umbanderos have said in this year’s divination. They said that “Fire and Water, Neptune and Mars” would reign this year. A struggle between opposites. I felt that the storm wanted to manifest more.
But something was holding it back. The darker forces of the old year are still holding on. And fighting to remain here. That is why it is imperative that we all do whatever new year’s rituals and offerings there are to assure victory for the spring forces. Our collective prayers and offerings will decide whether the positive forces of change will win out or not.
We need to appeal to the Gods first and foremost and then ask them to empower the spirits of nature to give spring victory. When I mean spring and winter I am also speaking figuratively of Light and Dark, Good and Evil. We all need to get on board with helping the Light win this battle. Dark isn’t necessarily evil. But in this context, based on the divinations, malevolent forces seem to be using the dark of winter to achieve an objective.
And this can have ramifications for us in the future. Better to do our best to prevent this now. Magic is only part of the solution though. We need to accompany faith with action. We need to make serious changes in our lives and do better.
We need to love and be open to getting involved in the world around us. No more hiding in our own little worlds. The good news is, at least those rain drops happened at all. I fully expected the winter to be the clear winner. So we just might kick it’s ass anyway.
We are now living in the Year of the Earth Boar in the Chinese Zodiac. A very good Blogger I follow here on WordPress wrote a great article on this :
He has some good news for this year which is very welcomed at this point. Also, Hobiyee Nisg̱a’a New Year started this month. This refers to a holiday where the Elders of this First Nation look to the skies and divine. They use the Moon to see if we will have a prosperous or poor year. Let’s hope for a prosperous year.