Out of the Broomcloset
Well, you need not necessarily care, dear reader, that this issue of Out In Jersey happens to cover my favorite time, which is that time of year that falls between Lammas/Lughnasadh, and the autumnal equinox (Mabon). Despite the fact that we are collectively screwing the pooch, in regards to the climate, I expect that we will enjoy a version of seasonable change in the Northeast (though, the omens and portents are not clear).
While there are still some who would like to claim that the “pagan” holidays celebrated as such had constituted a particular calendar, this is not particularly supportable. Awareness of, or using the knowledge of, when the equinoxes and solstices occur as a framework to view the passage of time is not problematic. That covers four of the holidays, which form work can be referred to as the “Wheel of the Year.” The other one that we will be celebrating now, Lammas, lacks the same historical support, in that it effectively comes to us as a harvest festival.
Ritually, the waning of the year is now setting in; even if the air temperature hasn’t changed, the quality of light has. These are signals that one should be preparing for a change in direction and attitude; time’s a-wasting! The Sun, “born” at Yule, goes to the ground now. Mabon as a name was first popularized by Aiden Kelly. While referred to as the second harvest, this really is a misnomer, as one’s fields would be producing abundantly since midsummer, at least; so thinking of it as the second stage of harvest might be more accurate (particularly if you have been staggering your plantings).
From a magical perspective, these concepts — the Sun, bringing in the sheaves, reaping, and amassing what has a value — make this the ideal time of year to engage in money drawing; while money doesn’t grow on trees we are told, there are a number of things that we can plant within the landscape that summon financial rewards to us.
For those of us with longer locks, one can extract nine longer hairs from your brush, and tie nine knots, and then bind them with a green ribbon (I know, the dwarf Gimli really missed his chance when he only got three strands of hair from Lady Galadriel, but he was focused on other pursuits). This buried works as a time-release capsule to draw regular intervals of cash your way when stuck in the ground; this could be made even more effective, if wrapped around an acorn, when the Moon is dark (which will be Aug. 15 and Sept. 18).
If you’re not feeling that free range, all of the above spell work can be done in a flower pot. This is best filled with soil that you have carried away from crossroads, or at least where paths cross that you may keep your eye on or tend to when you feel compelled to.
Despite this season, if you’re not feeling particularly horticultural, just buy a green candle, write a dollar amount on a piece of paper in some multiple of nine, insert it into the bottom of the candle, then rub it with basil and with bergamot. You’ll recognize the scent of bergamot if you ever drank Earl Grey tea; it’s the herb used to flavor it (and it was the favorite tea of Queen Elizabeth I, who was certainly a queen who knew about holding onto the cash).
One acquaintance found that all of their spell work for this time of year was always improved by making a sacrificial offering of Sunny Doodles. I’ll leave it up to you as to whether they’re consumed or left at the crossroads.
Wishing you all prosperity as we move into the autumn.