Many of the old Pagan traditions have myths around weavers, spinning the threads of our life, where we are always at the centre but everything we do affects everything around us. The slightest thought we have sends vibrations or waves rippling out along the threads, changing the pattern, or if we are sufficiently aware and can read the signs around us, allowing us to trace the vibrations in the reverse direction in order that we may make make choices. To do this, however, we must acknowledge more than the four dimensions of ordinary reality.
To craft is generally defined as being to create or fashion something with skill, usually by hand. We unknowingly craft a tapestry of our life, as we live it. Sometimes beautiful patterns emerge, and the flow may look like the simple grain of a straight-growing tree. Other times threads get knotted and twisted, holes develop, branches may even get broken off, more like a tree developing a burr. But consider how prized the burrs of oak or walnut are, when polished up.
A witch is sometimes defined as one who shapes and bends and changes reality. An energy-shifter. There are as many ways of doing this as there are witches, but fundamentally I believe we all, witches or not, seek to change what we don’t like about our lives and to create or craft a life that we truly enjoy living. Witches learn to align themselves with the natural forces that exist, those of Earth, Fire, Air and Water, and of Spirit, that divine spark of existence that runs through everything in creation and ultimately connects us all as one. Sometimes we may call upon additional helpers or allies, such as animals, devas, fae, ancient deities, ancestors, etc., most of whom reside in different dimensions to our own. We become aware of the influences of celestial bodies such as the sun and the moon and other planets and work within their rhythms. And we learn to appreciate and know the environment around us. A hedgewitch is usually one who works alone rather than in a coven; it may also refer to one who works with plants, and who rides the boundaries of the hedge into different dimensions as I do. It is called a Craft because it involves knowledge and skill, although most will not see the completed tapestry.
I enjoy bringing together all aspects of craftworking, and the need to create things that are both useful and beautiful, to paraphrase William Morris, is something I feel strongly. While not everything I make or do comes under the banner of being ‘Pagan’, i.e. a country dweller as opposed to a civilian, or alternatively one who follows a nature based religion, as much as possible does, and so is included here. Items may be crafted for magical purposes, or to celebrate Spirit in some way, or to shift some energies in the same way that a spell works; the magic which makes the change frequently becomes woven into what I create.
I also craft stories. Words can be power, and those included on this blog are those that are co-created with Spirit. Some are simply stories of my life; others are a combination of those I wanted to write, those that refused to leave me alone until I wrote them, and those that I have been asked to write. I’ve never been able to turn requests from trees down…
So what you will find in this blog are the many strands of my crafting. They are individually single strands, each representing one aspect of what I do, yet woven together the picture becomes richer and more revealing. I try to accept myself for who I am and find something positive in every situation – that is also part of crafting my path in life.
Rowan is a tree of protection, of inspiration, of vision, sacred to the goddess Brigid, and guarded by dragons. It wasn’t until I smelt the blossom of a Rowan tree in flower that I really understood where the name of Quickening Tree came from, but to do so is to experience such an intense energy rising up that you feel anything is possible. While the red berries are equally important, they come as the energies are withdrawing and spiralling back down into the earth in the autumn. It is probably not a coincidence that red often symbolises the underworld in Celtic mythology. I thank the Rowan for spreading its branches over me and over this blog.