Archive for February, 2011

Valentine’s Day: Where Did it Come From?

Tuesday, February 1st, 2011

As lovers in many parts of the world celebrate February 14th as Valentine’s Day, how many of them know how this tradition came to be?  Historians believe that the holiday originated from an ancient Roman fertility festival that was annually observed on February 15th.  When the Roman Catholic Church became dominant, the Pope declared that this holiday be reoriented to celebrate a 3rd century Christian martyr, named St. Valentine who died for the love of his God and Church.    The holiday once again turned toward romance, in medieval France and England, when it was thought that birds mated on February 14th.


About the Author…
Barbara-Lynn Freed has over twenty years experience in Shamanism and teaches a 3 year Shamanic apprenticeship called Resurrecting the Old Ways:  Walking the Land & Honoring the Spirits in Right Relationship.  To find out more about this program and how to sign-up visit her website.

Spider Totems

Tuesday, February 1st, 2011

Spiders are critters you want in your garden, as they eat lot’s of insects that may be harmful to your plants.  If you mulch, that is, lay down a layer of straw to keep the soil moisture from evaporating, it will establish a good ground cover for spiders to live in.  In the past ten summers that my vegetable garden has flourished, I’ve seen a multitude of these wondrous beings scampering about.

Spiders have a real intelligence about them, that you usually don’t encounter with the everyday house variety.  However, if you have engaged a very large one up close, like I have, you’ll notice it right away.  In the mid ’90’s, I was dragging my heels, about shifting my lifestyle, to one of surrender.  So the Guardians of the Directions sent me a wake-up call, by enticing a huge spider to remind me of my destiny.  There is nothing like being buck naked in the shower, and having a three inch, blobby spider peering down at you from the shower rod, to remind you how vulnerable you really are.  “Ok”, I barked. “I get it.”   Promptly getting my bug jar, and placing him outside, I vowed to put my fears aside and to get on with, what I was being asked to do.

Spinning it’s silken web, spiders are often associated with fate or destiny.  Meditating on the central point of it’s spiral web, may help you to balance your past, present and future.  Are you focused and moving toward one goal, or are you scattering your energy?  Weaving it’s web, spiders can also be associated with awakening your creative sensibilities.  And in many myths, this creature is known as the guardian of ancient alphabets and languages, for the geometric patterns and angles created by the spider’s web, was considered the first true alphabet.

Spider medicine can also teach us how to walk the threads of life between life and death, waking and sleeping, and the physical and spiritual.

If spider has woven it’s path into your life, ask yourself if you are weaving your dreams in to reality.  Or are you using all of your creative opportunities?  Do you need to learn how to walk in balance in your life?

Your Sun Sign: Will it Change?

Tuesday, February 1st, 2011

Recently there was a huge panic in the news, and online, that everyone’s Sun Sign would be changing because of the Earth’s wobble.  This is simply not true and here’s why.

What is new for the masses, is old hat for astrologers.  We have known about the wobble and precession of the ages for thousands of years.

What is Precession of the Ages?
Because the Earth’s axis wobbles, the stars and constellations appear to slowly rotate around the Earth, and this causes the plane of the ecliptic (the constellations) to shift very slightly each evening.    It takes about  2,160 years for the vernal equinox to move into another zodiacal constellation, and about 26,000 years to complete a full cycle.  This movement is called precession of the ages.  Hence, the talk of moving from the Age of Pisces, to the Age of Aquarius.

Why does this phenomena not affect our Sun Signs?

For most western astrologers like myself, our astrological system (Tropical) is based on how the earth rotates around the sun, so that our points of reference are the solstices and equinoxes.  In this system Precession is irrelevant.  However, for astrologers who follow the Indian Vedic system (Sidereal),  procession will change a person’s sign.  The nice thing about astrology is that both these systems are valid and accurate.  They simply focus on different information.

What about the new sign Ophicuhus? As you may remember from a past newsletter, this sign is not new either.  Recognized in ancient times, Ophiuchus resides between Scorpio and Sagittarius, and is  known as the Serpent Healer, the symbol of eternal life. It also has the ability to prevent death through healing, and can also resurrect you from death.  For some reason, it was removed from the zodiac a long time ago.  Perhaps it was simply easier to work with the number 12, rather than 13, or maybe it was cast off when the Goddess religions fell from favor.  In any case, astrologers are not going to add it back into the mix any time soon.