Celebrating Lughnasadh

August 1st marks the beginning of the harvest where we begin to harvest what we have sown. Lughnasadh (or Lammas) is the first of three Wiccan harvest festivals observed – the other two are Mabon and Samhain. (It seems like only yesterday we were celebrating the Summer Solstice…)

Today at the Sunnyvale Farmers Market, we overheard C-Farms saying that it was the “end of tomato” season. They grow the most amazing varieties of tomatoes. Huge tables filled with regular and cherry-sized tomatoes dominate their stand every Summer. Today there was only two tables. Every year I look forward to the corn and melons at Pinnacle and the tomatoes at C-Farms. The end of Summer is upon us and I’M NOT READY!!!! Dammit.

Still, there was plenty of Summer’s Bounty and we took advantage of it.

The melons and squash will get eaten straight away, while the Heirloom tomatoes will become “The Mothership“. The organic (Did I mention everything here is organically grown? Well, now I have.) corn will be roasted and frozen for use during the “off-season”. Same goes for the tomatillos, although I may reserve some for salsa.

It is this time of year, late Summer, when the Earth is overflowing with abundance, warm sunshine, and Magick. Express your gratitude for those who labor to grow the food you eat; and if you have a backyard bounty of your own, share your food with others. This year, lughnasadh falls on a Sunday which is ruled by the Sun. Make a point to go outside and lift your face to its healing rays and smile. It’s a day for healing and miracles.

The planet does nothing but support us and we are constantly committing crimes against nature.
– Daphne Zuniga

As you thank Mother Earth say a healing prayer, as well, for her health affects all life here. You may want to invoke Demeter, Goddess of the Harvest who presided over the fertility of the earth.

Let us take nothing for granted.

Blessed Berry Lemonade

½ cup honey
1 cup lemon juice
3 lemon chamomile tea bags (I don’t care for chamomile so I will be substituting green tea)
2 cups blueberries
6 cups water

In a small saucepan, dissolve the honey in lemon juice over low heat. Place tea bags in a blender and pour lemon juice over them. Allow to steep for 9 minutes. Remove tea bags and puree with blueberries and water. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Serve over ice.

Serves 8

Recipe courtesy of llewellyn.com

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King of Cups, 8 of Swords, and F.E.A.R.

Who will be my Muse, my inspiration over the next three days; and what energies should I embrace?

The Lord of Grails (King of Cups) is a visionary, enchanter, sorcerer, and shapeshifter. He is ruled by Pluto (God of the Underworld) in Scorpio (death/rebirth) and steals the energies (symbolized here by Medusa’s head) of his enemies to use as his own. The Lord of Grails rides a Pale Horse. He is my Muse.

Ruled by Jupiter (expansion/growth) in Gemini (restless mind) the 8 of Knives (Swords) personifies endless analyzing, creating one’s own problems, mystical insight, and transcension. It asks you to have patience and allow things to unfold at their true pace. Alternately, the card may suggest a need to conquer fears and break free of self-imposed restrictions or negative beliefs.

Freedom from fear that binds and blinds.
– Elliot Adam

FEAR = False Evidence Appearing Real

Ever seen a cartoon of a little boy scaring his sister with a garter snake? Sure, we all have. Maybe you scared your sister similarly or were on the receiving end of such a prank. In any event, most of the time we outgrow these childish impulses. We learn how to be empathetic, respectful, and treats others courteously. Well, some of us do.

But there seem to be a large number of individuals in the World who feed on the misery of others – whether they be hoo-man or animal. Maybe you’ve even had the misfortune to meet one. Make no mistake, though, these empty vessels are everywhere. They are LEGION. They manufacture or incite FEAR then sit back and FEED on the misery it creates. They practically quiver with ecstasy.

These insights came to my mind after hearing a number of preposterous and downright ludicrous statements recently made by mouthpieces, self-proclaimed experts, and our government. I really don’t know how they kept a straight face. Than it dawned on me: They’re fucking with us. And they love it. They love seeing us squirm and scramble and BE AFRAID. They get off on it. THEY’RE FEEDING ON IT. But I also realized they feed off our ANGER, too.

“Wait. Are you telling me to love these people?” Glad you asked. That is totally up to you and your comfort zone. However, the single best tactic one can take to deflate their “power” is by ignoring it. Yes, they are strong-arming here and there. But what if you went ahead and got on with your life and never gave them and their ugly schemes the time of day? Deal with situations as they come up calmly and without fear or anger. What do they have to feed off of then? These are my thoughts currently. I would love to hear yours.

How we react to what is thrown at us
is what determines our level of happiness or frustration

I’m loving my early-morning communions with Mother Earth…

and the beautiful things I see on my way back to the house.

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Cats are like Puzzle Boxes::Tiger

Gliding stealthily through the forests, grasslands, and swamps of Russia and Asia, it is the most iconic and charismatic of the big cats and is the largest species in the felidae family. Like the lion, it is at the top of its food chain – an apex predator. The national animal of India, Bangladesh, Malaysia, and South Korea, it is Panthera tigris. Tiger.

July 29 is
Global/International Tiger Day

Both male and female tigers have strikingly beautiful, striped fur which is skin deep (if shaved, the coat pattern would still be visible); and there are three color variants: golden, stripeless snow white, and white (The Tiger Species Survival Plan has condemned the breeding of white tigers) that now rarely occur in the wild due to the reduction of wild tiger populations, but continue in captive populations. A black tiger is a pseudo-melanistic variant of pigmentation characterized by enlarged stripes which cover a large part of the body of the animal, making it appear melanistic. No two tigers have the same stripes. Like human fingerprints, their stripe patterns are unique to each individual.

All tigers have circular pupils with yellow irises (except the white tiger which typically has blue irises). Like most big cats they ROAR but possess other vocal communications: chuffing, grunting, woofing, snarling, and growling.

The tiger belongs to the genus Panthera with two subspecies: Panthera tigris tigris and Panthera tigris sondaica.

In the last 70 years three species of tiger have gone extinct and all six remaining species are endangered*.

Panthera tigris tigris
Also known as the Royal Bengal tiger.
Native to India.
Extinct as of 2003
Also called the Balkhash tiger, Hyrcanian tiger, Turanian tiger, and the Mazandaran tiger; the Caspian tiger was native to eastern Turkey, northern Iran, Mesopotamia, the Caucasus, Central Asia to northern Afghanistan, and the Xinjang region in western China.
Also known as the Amur tiger, Manchurian tiger, Korean tiger, and Ussurian tiger.
Native to the Russian Far East, Northeast China, and possibly North Korea.
South China
Also known as the Amoy tiger (in the fur trade).
Native to southern China.
Critically Endangered
Possibly extinct in the wild.
Native to Southeast Asia.
Approaching the threshold for being Critically Endangered.
Also known as the Southern Indochinese tiger, it is native to Peninsular Malaysia.
Critically Endangered
Panthera tigris sondaica
Declared extinct in 1994.
Hunted to extinction, the Javan tiger was native to Java.
Extinct since the 1950s.
The Bali tiger was native to Bali.
Native to Sumatra, the Sumatran tiger is the only surviving tiger in the Sunda Islands.
Critically Endangered

There are also two prehistoric tigers on record: Panthera tigris trinilensis and Panthera tigris acutidens.

*Major reasons for population decline are habitat destruction, habitat fragmentation and poaching for fur and body parts (for use in Chinese pseudo-medicines). Tigers are also victims of human–wildlife conflict, particularly in range countries with a high human population density.

World Tiger Day is in honour of one of the world’s most iconic and endangered big cats. Wild tigers have dropped by more than 95% since the beginning of the 20th Century! There is only 3,900 tigers left in the wild.

Today we remember Sultan a skeletal year-old tiger, who was in critical condition and when anesthetized for tests, he flat-lined in cardiac arrest. The scene transformed into an ER, but he made it back and started breathing. Sultan was one of 13 lucky animals that we rescued from a War Zone in Syria!


I am not here for your amusement or abuse.

Big Cat Public Safety Act (HR263/S1210)
Big Cat Rescue
Panthera: A Catscape Case Study
National Tiger Conservation Authority
Save the Tiger Fund
IUCN Integrated Tiger Habitat Conservation Programme (2015-2021)
Tiger (wikipedia)
Tiger conservation (wikipedia)

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