Elder Mountain Dreaming

We are a small three fold sacred space, in the processes of being created by Phoenix the Elder, Wisdom Teacher, Dreamer (shaman), Folk Healer, exorcist and remover of dark souls and energies;  Jennifer Lee Reeves – Dreamer, Sacred Artist and Gardener; and Sarah Burnt Stone – Dreamer, Artist, and Dancer. We are a Dreamer’s collective for those devoted to the practices of healing the Emotional Body, Animism Body and Soul Body (disciplines and purifications). Development of the Empath, Dreaming as Medicine, Spiritual Artist’s Creative/Retreat; and Organic Gardens. Located in the Pacific Northwest. Write to ElderMountainDreaming@gmail.com for more information or to be on our newsletter. We are a shamanic plant/drug free zone, no pot, alcohol, psyche meds or any other “perception” altering of the mind, body or soul. 

My beautiful home
Photo by Matt Witt of the Cascade-Siskiyou Mountain Range in Ashland OR. 

Phoenix the Dreamer was fated this lifetime as a Dreamer from her family’s lineages of Szeptun (Szeptucha, Whisperer) in Polish and Mol’farka (Hradivnykiv) in Ukraine, the area were the two blended in the Carpathian Mountains of the Rusyn (Lempko, Hutsul, Boyko etc). In the Norse tradition she would be called a Völva (seer shaman). Her elders were from Tyczyn, Poland, a Podkarpackie Voivodeship in Rzeszów and Lubaczów (borderlands once Ukraine and now Poland). Their ancestors were Carpathian. (The Rusyn’s http://www.carpatho-rusyn.org/voj.htm).

Phoenix’s active initiations journey began as a small girl having intense experiences when trying to sleep, her astral body was either being sucking up and pulled out of her body, and other nights she was falling into the underworld. These were daily event until she turned 12. By 17 in 1975, the first initiations of pain of the wasp medicines began and the shaman’s sicknesses and soul sickness began at 27 and continued until completion (2017). All initiations, self-healing, karma purification (through pain and suffering) and a shaman’s life of initiations as an exorcist are completed. She passed three decades of tests, allowing entrance into the mysticism, mother earth and tests of death and suspending death. She has trained apprentice females who are dreamers since 1995 and in 2018 steps out in public as elder (sixty).

me as oldDreamer: Teacher of the levels of both the mental astral body (lucidity and astral travel) and the soul astral body, animism soul bodies (the more dangerous levels of dreaming). Symbolism, signs and synchronicity cycles and its living applications. Dream medicines to help others, heal, protection of roaming shadows. Learning to grow beyond astral travel, into the purification of soul karma, extract attachments and working on fear. She carries the initiatory rites of the ancient Dreamer (shaman) and has mastered her own lucidity in the early 90s, consciousness in waking and dreaming by the 00s, partial and then full out of bodies (silver chords or death cords cut) of the souls astral bodies in the 10s. Remote viewer (mental body) and remote viewing (soul body and remote in dreaming). Walker in-between the veils, shaman’s weather rites and mystical fog and animism shape-shifting. The integration of our dreams and personal issues, helps us approach our fears in personal healing, accepting more opening the “changes” in our life. If you are interested in adding a new layer to your dream work, please write for more information.

Folk Healer, clients, students and apprentices: Sacred Intention work, circles of sacred art ceremony, ceremonies for cleansing, purification detox of a soul natures and emotional body structures for healing; Intuitive counsel, medical intuitive, energy healer. Astrologer, Astral Body (chakra purification). Seer and Esoteric readings, Moon Charming, Moon Cycles practices for emotional and mind-body balance; Supporting crisis or any issue of emotional, physical and mental pain, imbalances and diseases. Working with the purification rites (karma); with illnesses, focusing on the root source rather than the resulting manifestation of the disease (mental, emotional or physical). Transformational healing work (transformation, death (changes) and rebirth. She adds practices and folk healing towards the emotional healing work which we all must do. 

Exorcist, Bell Ringer Rites, Wind-Whisperer: Shadow dream huntress and binder); eradication of shadow roamers (if the person does what is recommended to keep it contained afterward); Clearing sickness (home, land) from living peoples shadows. Animism path for apprentices only (some student and apprenticeships are available).

 

DREAMING | HEALING | COUNSEL | WORK-STUDY | WORKSHOPS | CIRCLES :moon phases

SPIRITUAL SEEKER OR AWAKENED – Wise counsel sessions for those who enter the next level of their path, or for beginners who need assistance. Empowering the spiritual seeker or the expanding spiritual person who wishes to move forward to the next level in their journey. Finding help on understanding the variables, choices, false teachings, discernment, teachers, sobriety, healing path vs social or knowledge path. Differences between New Age work, Traditional, Knowledge, and Metaphysical, Paranormal, Pagan, Drug (plant) Shamanism vs Shamanism. 

THE GATHERING OF DREAMERS Empowering the Dreamer in a Series of six personal dream work sessions (2 hours) each, with dedicated homework and practices in-between and emails with the option of continuing the studies afterward. This work-study is a personal one on one teaching, guidance, direction, and practices with monthly meetings by phone or skype (especially for international).

THE INTUITIVE & THE EMPATH
Video Series: For those who like their own personal learnings… A series of three video classes: Introduction to the Empath & the Intuitive; Video 2 – The Empath, its Gifts, and Challenges; Video 3 – The Intuitive and the Gifts of the Knower. Series is a six-hour teaching videos focusing on the sensitivities and gifts of those who experience their emotional body called the Intuitive and the Empath.

MORE TO COME
For more information or to be on our once a month Lunar Workstudy and to stay connected write to: ElderMountainRetreats@gmail.com

Photo: Elder Mountain is located just to the left of the lake on the left by Matt Witt.

Third New Moon of Summer and Full Solar Eclipse

eclipse

By Phoenix the Elder – Greetings everyone, this is our last moon cycle of summer, we end the season with this third (moon). As an astrologer, the last forty years, I am not influenced by spiritual fads, nor fancy words when it comes to my path and journey.  I say this because… This is the first time I will speak these words… this is the first “Supermoon” we have seen in a long, long time, and what is rising before us. The total Solar Eclipse looks like this :

Begins at 9:03 am (pacific time)
Reaches maximum at 10:17 am, 0.94 magnitude
Then the New Moon (28 Leo), is precisely at 11:30 am
and then the Eclipse ends at 11:37 am

I hope you are doing something special to mark the event on that day. I have marked many events in this life and honored this one with my ceremony at Pluto’s Cave last week which was a cleansing and purification ceremony for the region but also three people who were in a “collective” shadow glitch-mess. I myself am doing a final third and final round of asking for forgiveness, from those who I need to ask. This is the third layer, and third decade I have done this, because the final layers are finishing up for me. I like my space, heart and energy clear as I use my spiritual time very wisely.

This moon, we also have Mars involved again, the 5th time in a row and we are adding Mercury (in its retrograde influences) to this addition. The north node is always involved in a Solar Eclipse, which adds the fate point to the conjunctions. This make up the small bucket of planet which are all “very” personal planets, so expect this New Moon cycle the next 28 days and nights to be very personal. If you have been aware and working your path up to now, then this should go smoothly this month or at least the part you are working on. I say this because these plants are all in a trine with Uranus and Saturn, and that is “very” beneficial for flow. 

Actions are really required this moon cycle besides words. I would suggest not passing this opportunity by, and take action upon what needs to change and change in your life right now. What needs to be forgiven and forgiveness with other people or the self. What addictions or shamanic plants and drug addictions, pot and alcohol that needs to be addressed or family members to address.

What emotional sabotage or victim issues need to be focused on in order to heal. What dream or expectation that collapsed leading to more self nurturing, needs to take place. Whatever it is you need to do, do it this next moon cycle (again) with the big collective opportunity within our small personal moon cycle.

Many people in their 50s-70s who have been on a long spiritual journey are reaching the last peaks of their spiritual lessons and purifications and finishing thirty to forty years of spiritual work and self healing. Hopefully you were not just on the ever popular spiritual-social, or spiritual-knowledge path.

Others in their 40s are deepening their awareness and healing journey and ‘right relations’ (Pluto in Libra group). Those in their 30s are finding out what its really like to be in an adult and in adult situations for the first time and how powerful they are compared to their youth or maiden under 30. Those under 30 are eternally the same when it comes to everything in life, they are ‘youth’ and that never changes.

My wisdom to you is that Eclipses are not personal, they are collective, they play on humanity, not us as individuals unless you were actually born on the day of an eclipse (lunar or solar). This supermoon is the first of a series of collective accumulations that is going to give rise to change, good or bad, ugly or beautiful. If you have not practiced letting go disciplines, I suggest you start now. The more flexible you can be in the next ten years and learn to let go, the better you will manage your journey.

So, like always, set your “one” intention for this moon cycle like you do (and me too), for your own personal growth, personal awareness and personal cycle this month. Many of you have been here long enough doing this work with us to see the results now, and this moon will be no different. Keep focused on that and the symbols that start to come your way, starting August 18th, until the actual new moon on the 21st (Monday).

Since its a special Supermoon, I will just leave you with a video and the intention examples and keep this article short. We have to repeat our Leo intentions again, with the flavor of this third moon. Its usually a Virgo quality, but the new moon is hovering at the 28/29 degrees in Leo, which is an auspicious point in the sky, so we too must accept its quality of our heart and soul.

Slavic Protection Symbol - 8 pointed Star, the feminine Midnight Sun. Four circles representing two way doors (earth, air, fire and water) with Earth at the center.Examples of Lunar/Leo Intentions (again):

I am healing my drama
I listen to my soul (small inner voice)
I trust in the process of purification
I am aware of my inner peace
I am healthy

I am creative 
I am passionate
I am healing my heart
I am forgiving 
I am grounded in my emotions

I recognize my inner child needs
I protect my heart
I am emotionally honest
I am positive in my detachments
I replace drama with self-love

I practice my spiritual disciplines
I express my courage with compassion
I allow stability in my life
I am nurturing my inner child
I allow love to come from deep within me

I use my anger in a positive, healthy way
I accept more joy
I am mindful of my projections
I respect my talents
I judge only my own actions
I commit to healthy passion
I overcome my fear of _______

 

astro_2gw_162_aa_eclipse.11606.15141
New Moon Aug 21, 2017 11 30 am

Here is a great explanation of total solar eclipses and lunar eclipses:

Raven, Crow and Magpie, Totem and Animism

YATAGARASU

By Phoenix of Elder Mountain – As a dreamer (shaman), I have both a relationship to crow, raven and magpie trough my own animism souls attained with them and with understanding the deeper totemic relationship. This has taught me much about the medicines of the soul-birds through my experience over the decades. All I did in my path was bow deeply mother earth, both her consciousness, served her for decades, and passed all of her tests of wrath. Now as I enter elder, her avian, animals, insects and oceanids come to help me without asking.

I do ceremony, but don’t have or keep feathers, horns or animal skins with the ceremony, they are not needed, I only focus with intent on what is to heal, personal, inter-personal, for others or for specific collective work. Shaman mean’s healer or medicine person and that is it, to heal the self when the cancer rises, not using medications, plants, or doctors. It meant that a million years ago and it applies true today.

In animism, which is the deeper and much older teaching than totem, is a path or walk of living attainment through the decades of karmic purification of the emotional body, soul body, mental and physical body. Those who shape shift into raven, crow or magpie consciously, know them best. This excludes most sorcerers who just project shifting, but are not really shape soul shifting into an animal or bird (the puff and smoke illusions) in reality in the shape-shifting. In fact, there are more people who shift into animism soul that have demonic souls, than there are with pure souls.

Illustration by Plaksin for Russian Folk Tale, the Magpie-Crow, 1969, Soviet Artist.jpgThe evolution of the loss of our animism souls and how the artists from ancient time to today show it in their work…

1. First was the animal (which animal and human shared a soul) the living animism through shamans and shamanism;

2. Beginning losses as the Sun cults rises in all cultures, even indigenous. Effigy’s of half bird half woman are the oldest of earth until the sun cults began.

3. As the sun cults and then kingdoms were built by government (war, science and religion) which was the newly developing men’s religions), the art cultures then depicted “half animal/bird and half human” like the centaur, or lion with wings etc (zoomorphic);

4. Complete loss of grandmothers shamanic cultures in art is where the human, is riding the animal or bird” or being drawn by a cart like the goddess Freya, reduced to cats and pigs as the animals. Even in indigenous cultures but pretty much was destroyed between the 3rd and 8th century.

5. Modern Pets and domestic animals, farm animals, which are in great abundance, and the lowest form of the “human-animism soul” today. Most humans who have a pet, that is their animism soul and all the freedom and nature has been bred out. Or if they once had a wild animism soul, such as bear or wolf, those are now demonic, and stuck with the demon human shadow in the underworld, or roaming in spiritual or native groups in-between the veils. This is what skinwalker, werewolves, vampires etc are.

Crow, Raven and Magpie Totem and Folklore

Crow and Raven can be either dark (shadowy or demonic ensouled), having taken their karmic attributes, or they can be light (helpful friend, protector in the form of watcher). Crow, what I have witnessed as a shaman is much darker than Raven when it comes to humans and their animism soul. The magpie carries a unique balance of both and neither and is the great bridge of finding center between light and dark. Magpie is found only in a few cultures teachings, and has both black and white colors. Raven and Crow correlates to the struggle between shadow and light, good and evil, empowerment verses power, which is the relationship of soul (water) and spirit (fire).

This is why in mythology and folklore, the crow and raven shifted from the light side of shadow (white crow) into the dark sides of the dark in the sun cults (the sun) mythologies of all people. Societies and tribes alike were building and building more and more karma. War and killing is the main destroyer of the animism soul besides shamanic plants, drugs and pot.

The sun stories related crow and raven as thief (trickster), shapeshifter and messenger of both sides. The bird who was white and transformed to black, bringing luck to some and to others, a messengers warning of the presence of shadow. Magpie is always referred to as a Heavenly Messenger, this has to do with overcoming the duality of crow and raven’s light verses dark battles. Or its much more of a trouble makers than Crow himself.

This is the meaning of the “triple footed crow” behind the art of the Chinese, represent in their mythology. This also has been seen in some art in ancient coins from Lycia in Greece and Pamphylia, an Ancient Region of Anatolia. But like the Chinese they too pushed out the grandmothers older shamanic cultures.

The Chinese had lost their original grandmother shaman culture’s connection, so too Native American and Aboriginal when the sun cults arrived three-thousand years ago. What was left over from prehistory, is in all crow and raven teachings today and are all very similar. What also remains, especially in Chinese mythology, is the direct connection of the “three” (magpie, crow and raven) in visual ancient art connected to the older time before the sun cults, when moon and sun cultures ruled together before paganism and that is the “three legged crow legends.”

magpie

Raven and crow and magpie, all fall into neutral territory as a bird soul shamanism teaching, they live in-between the worlds in their respective order, and this makes me associate them with both the dawn and dusk goddesses and the shape-shifting of shaman’s animism reality. They are not truly night or day, I have seen ravens and crows out at night and the daytime, but mostly day, as they are not nocturnal. As a totem raven and crow can go both ways, they can be messengers to warn of shadow, to those of the light. Or they can be messengers of light, giving warnings to the shadow people or the walking dead.

In local modern folklore or folk teachings, I have seen many pot farms associated with the more shadowy sides of Crow (but not raven), which mean the more warrior aspects of men (dark side of the light) have crossed the line and gone over to the shadow sides (dark side of the dark). I have also seen groups of warrior types of people, native or non-native who have taken their dark side (karmic side of their own past life warrior killing) and carry that integrated past life of the demonic astral shadow body, into this life, again, Crow displays this but not raven.

All this is what makes raven, crow and magpie very unique as soul totems, and why they are associated with the double standards of Gemini. In the archetype of Gemini, is the symbol of magic, and trickery, and the self indulgent thief who can walk the two way doors of deception. An example is the charismatic spiritual leader who is really dark underneath, but those who cannot see, only see their charming or charismatic side. For those with the light side of crow and raven animism or totem, will always see the shadow of these people who use trickster medicines. This is why crow and raven are complicated totems, they are not straight forward and fall into the difficult spiritual task of overcoming “illusion”.

When it comes to the esoteric or mystery, crow and raven are self serving both to its shadow attributes and its light attributes and why its similar to coyote aspects of totems. Owl and Vulture are straight forward in their dealings with the dead and darkness.

Ravens and Crows are black representing the night, but live during the day in the Sun, and that has helped them to obtain mystical and then mythic status as the birds who govern both night and day, life and death, but not the underworld. Those who are stuck between life and death, or those who are the living (dead, because of their sickness, or addictions etc). Vulture, unlike raven or crow, is associated with the underworld and death, the dead and with lost souls and the nourishment or fertility that comes from the breaking down of the physical life into the spiritual. But raven and crow do not carry these qualities, they are strictly messengers like hawk.

So to sum up the Totem: Raven and Crow are dualistic in nature, they are either the “dark side of the dark” (demonic) or they are the “light side of the dark” (fighting against the dark for purposes and intent of the light) and why the black raven and crows colors, once white, not fight the dark, and their coloring is black.

Bird Shaman Animist woman Permian animal style VI-XII centuryPrehistory Shaman Grandmothers, into Goddess cultures and lastly the earliest parts of Paganism

In Japan, the Shinto Goddess, Amaterasu is sometimes represented as a giant raven, Yata-Garasu. The raven has long been used in religious and astrological symbolism across China and Japan, particularly among those involved with sun worship and onmyōdō. Raven represent heaven, the earth, and the soul (bird). Also while the crow itself represents the sun. This was a time when the sun was a Goddess who rules over wisdom and benevolence, since then many of the sun goddesses were changed into the sun God.

In England, tombstones are sometimes called “ravenstones”. Among the Irish Celts, Raven was associated with the Triple Goddess, the Morrigan, who took the shape of Raven over battlefields as Chooser of the Slain. Before pagan traditions in the purer or older Goddess traditions she sat as the grandmother who was protector of her female warriors, later in the pagan cults, she was a protector of warriors, such as Chuhulian and Fionn MacCual.

Raven in paganism and druid traditions is also the totem of the pan-Celtic Sorceress and Goddess Morgan le Fay, called the Queen of Faeries. In some tales, she is Queen of the Dubh Sidhe, or Dark Faeries, who were a race of tricksters who often took the form of ravens.

The Scottish Goddess of Winter, The Cailleach, also shape shift into raven. A touch from her brings death (rebirth). The Cailleach is also older than Paganism and in the Shamanic eras would be called a Bone Mother which the raven is the smallest level of the animism souls of the shaman, for there are many.

Before the Apollo political cult took over the oracle and mystery women’s temples and centers of pre-Greece, Apollo consumed Athena’s Raven. The goddess Athena turned Coronis white crow into a black crow like many of the worlds cultures did.

Raven had brought bad news of the changing societies of the Minoans, Dorians and Ionians and their destruction by the rising Greeks, so long to Athena that she changed the light side of the dark of raven, into the dark side of the dark (Coronis from white to black). Then the rising Greek men had banished the Raven altogether from the Acropolis because it spoke the truth of the political men’s destructive behaviors of building the Greek political agenda against the soul (birds represent the soul in ancient traditions.)

Raven and Crow are not oracular birds like the owl is because they are ‘day’ birds, they are messengers of the waking life when it pertains to shadow. Owl is oracular and prophetic as night birds (the soul at night). Athena use to carry both birds, making her older than paganism, of the earlier tribes of the Dorians, Ionians and Minoans and their shamanic tribes.

Prehistory into History

Кутх, Хантай и Пеликен представят Камчатку на всероссийском конкурсе сувениров

The Kamchatkans

Kutkh (also Kutkha, Kootkha, Kutq Kutcha, Кутх), is the Raven Ancestor Spirit traditionally revered in various forms by various indigenous peoples of the Russian far east. Kutkh appears in many legends as a key figure in creation, as a fertile ancestor and as the mighty trickster of the shaman female and sometimes male. Its a popular animist stories of the Chukchi people and plays a central role in the mythology of the Koryaks and Itelmens of Kamchatka.

Many of the stories regarding Kutkh are similar to those of the Raven among the indigenous peoples of the Pacific Northwest Coast, a long history of indirect cultural contact between Asian and North American peoples. Kutkh (raven) is known among a wide group of people that share a common Chukotko-Kamchatkan language family. Raven is also known as Kutq among the Itelmen, KútqI, KútqIy, KúsqIy in the southeastern Koryak language; KúykIy or QúykIy in northwestern Koryak; and Kúrkil in the Chukchi language.

In Koryak it is employed commonly in its augmentative form, (KutqÍnnaku, KusqÍnnaku, KuyÍnnaku) all meaning “Big Kutkh” as creator, which is also a sun cult myth. The tales of Kutkh come in many, often contradictory versions. In some tales he is explicitly created by a Creator and lets the dawn onto the earth by chipping away at the stones surrounding her.

In others (sometimes out of an old fur coat) Raven takes pride in independence from the Creator. In some, Kamchatka, a feather is dropped while flying over the earth. In others, islands and continents are created by defecation, rivers and lakes out of her waters. The difficult volcanic terrain and swift rivers of Kamchatka are thought to reflect Kutkh’s capricious and willful nature.

The bringing of light in the form of the sun and the moon is also a common theme. Sometimes, tricking evil spirits which have captured the celestial bodies much in the style of analogous legends about the Tlingit and Haida in the Pacific Northwest. In others, it is Raven who must be tricked into releasing the sun and the moon from its bill. Kutkh’s children who are ravens, copulating with other animal spirits (animism) and creating the peoples who populate the world.

In the animistic tradition of north-Eurasian peoples, Kutkh has a variety of interactions and altercations with Wolf, Fox, Bear, Wolverine, Mouse, Owl, Seal, Walrus and a host of other. Many of these interactions involve some sort of trickery in which Kutkh comes out on top about as often as raven is made a fool of. An example of these contradictions is given to the Chukchi legend of Kutkh and the Mice….

The great and mighty raven Kutkh was flying through the cosmos. Tired from constant flight, he regurgitated the Earth from his gut, transformed into an old man, and alighted on the empty land to rest. Out of his first footsteps emerged the first Mice. Curious, playful and fearless, they entered the sleeping Kutkh’s nose. The fury of the subsequent sneeze buckled the earth and created the mountains and the valleys.

Attempts to stamp them out led to the formation of the ocean. Further harassments led to a great battle between the forces of snow and fire which created the seasons. Thus, the variable world recognizable to people emerged from the dynamic interaction between the mighty Kutkh and the small but numerous Mice. Although Kutkh is supposed to have given humankind variously light, fire, language, fresh water and skills such as net-weaving and copulation, raven is also often portrayed as a laughing-stock, hungry, thieving and selfish.

Ravens are often associated with death in mythology

In its contradictions, raven’s character is similar that of other tricksters, such as Coyote and sometimes Fox. The early Russian explorer and ethnographer of Kamchatka Stepan Krasheninnikov (1711–1755) summarizes the Itelmen’s relationship to Kutkh as follows:

“They pay no homage to Raven and never ask any favors; they speak of Raven only in derision. They tell such indecent stories about Raven that I would be embarrassed to repeat them. They upbraid Raven for having made too many mountains, precipices, reefs, sand banks and swift rivers, for causing rainstorms and tempests which frequently inconvenience them.

In winter when they climb up or down the mountains, they heap abuses on him and curse Raven with imprecations. They behave the same way when they are in other difficult or dangerous situations.” 

The image of Kutkh remains popular and iconic in Kamchatka, used often in advertising and promotional materials. Stylized carvings of Kutkh by Koryak artisans, often adorned with beads and lined with fur, are sold widely as souvenirs. The Chukchi creator-deity, roughly analogous to Bai-Ulgan of the Turkic pantheon. The Koryaks refer to him as Quikinna’qu (“Big Raven”) and in Kamchadal (Itelmens) mythology, is called Kutkhu.

eaglehawk and crow, aboriginal rock art

Australian Aboriginals

In Aboriginals tales of the raven is believed to have originally been a white bird who was scorched by the sun (cults). In Australian Aboriginal mythology, Crow is a trickster, culture hero and ancestral being. In the Kulin nation in central Victoria he was known as Waa (also Wahn or Waang) and was regarded as one of two moiety ancestors, the other being the more sombre eaglehawk Bunjil. Legends relating to Crow have been observed in various Aboriginal language groups and cultures across Australia.

Crow and Magpie – The various groups of Western Australia offer two versions of the same story about the Crow and the Magpie. The crow and the magpie are brothers (once brother and sister), both born with pure white feathers. Both were vain and would argue as to which was the most beautiful. Perched in a tree, they began to argue and then fought. The people with the crow as their totem will tell you the brothers fell into a fire below, the Crow getting burnt all over, the Magpie only partially burned.

One common myth concerns Crow’s role in bringing and stealing fire to humankind. According to a version of this story told by the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin nation, in the Dreamtime, fire been a jealously-guarded secret of the seven Karatgurk women who lived by the Yarra River where Melbourne now stands because women are the original fire keepers and do not misuse nature’s spirit. These women carried live coals on the ends of their digging sticks, allowing them to cook yams.

One day Crow found a cooked yam and, finding it tastier than the raw vegetables he had been eating, decided he would cook his food from then on. However, the Karatgurk women refused to share their fire with him and Crow resolved to trick them into giving it up. Crow caught and hid a number of snakes in an ant mound then called the women over, telling them that he had discovered ant larvae were far more tasty than yams.

The women began digging, angering the snakes, which attacked. Shrieking, the sisters struck the snakes with their digging sticks, hitting them with such force that the live coals flew off. Crow, who had been waiting for this, gathered the coals up and hid them in a kangaroo skin bag. The women soon discovered the theft and chased him, but the bird simply flew out of their reach and perched at the top of a high tree.

Eaglehawk and Craw – Bunjil the Eaglehawk, who had seen all of this, asked Crow for some of the coals so that he could cook a possum. Crow instead offered to cook it for him. Soon, a large group had gathered around Crow’s tree, shouting and demanding that he share the secret of fire with them. The din frightened Crow and at last he flung several live coals at the crowd.

Kurok-goru the fire-tailed finch picked up some of the coals and hid them behind his back, which is why to this day firefinches have red tails. The rest were gathered up by Bunjil’s shaman helpers, Djurt-djurt the nankeen kestrel and Thara the quail hawk. The coals caused a bushfire which burnt Crow’s feathers permanently black and threatened to consume the entire land, until Bunjil’s efforts halted its spread. The Karatgurk sisters, meanwhile, were swept into the sky where they became the Pleiades (the stars are said to represent their glowing fire sticks).

Those whom have the magpie as their totem will tell the story the same, but that the brothers fell into thick black mud, and the magpie only slightly stained his feathers, the crow covered in the mud. As for the crow, as in all Indigenous Australian totems, it is known for its cunning and intelligence, a trickster too, and old spirit with prescient knowledge or carrying old knowledge of many lifetimes (like reincarnation). Very powerful too, as in the totem itself is one of the ones with powerful natural magic, and depending on the language groups own mythology the holder of the totem will either carry great respect, or suspect.

Crow and Swamp Hawk – In another legend, Crow was travelling down the Murray River when he met Swamp Hawk. Deciding to play a trick on the other bird, he planted echidna quills in the deserted nest of a kangaroo rat and enticed Swamp Hawk to jump on them. The quills stuck and grew into Swamp Hawk’s feet, but the bird was pleased with this as he found he was now able to catch rats more easily. Some accounts have Crow ultimately leaving the earth altogether, having been called up into the heavens where he became Canopus, the second-brightest star in the night sky.

Crows attacking spirits on the way to the afterlife. The Yanyuwa people have a legend that says that as spirits of the dead approach the afterlife, they are attacked by crows carrying digging sticks. The crows are said to be angry with all people because people often chase them away from campsites when they scavenge. The spirits are saved by hawks and falcons.

Pacific Northwest Natives

Pacific Northwest Natives

Raven Tales are the traditional people and animals creation stories of the indigenous peoples of the Pacific Northwest Coast and are also found among Athabaskan-speaking peoples and others. Raven stories exist in nearly all of the First Nations throughout the region but are most prominent in the tales of the Tlingit and Tahltan people. Raven and eagle are known by many different names by many different peoples and is an important figure among written and oral traditional stories.

His tales are passed down through the generations of story tellers of the people and are of cultural and historical significance. It’s important to note that Native myths such as the Raven Tales, as opposed to tall tales and little stories for children, are not entertainment and are cultural property of the clan or individual that the story originates from. It is customary that others should not tell stories that are owned by another clan, especially if they do not live in the same area. While each culture’s stories of the Raven are different, there are even those that share the same title; certain attributes of Raven remain the same.

The Raven is always a magical creature able to take the form of human, animal, even inanimate objects. He is a keeper of secrets, and a trickster often focused on satisfying his own gluttony for whatever he desires. His stories tell of how worldly things came to be or offer suggestion to children on how to behave. Raven’s creative nature shows itself through circumstance rather than intent, through the desire to satisfy his own needs, rather than any altruistic principles. Raven is both the protagonist among the stories of some groups, and the antagonist of others; he is a hero and an amusement. Tales that feature the Raven as the hero are specific to areas in the north of the continent such as northern British Columbia and Alaska and their peoples, such as the Tsimshian and the Haida.

While Raven tales tell the origins of human beings, they do not address the origins of organized society. In tales which mirror development and organization of Native American societies, the hero is often humanity itself. Raven tales do not offer a detailed picture about the social relations and realities of life. ng the seashore all alone but would stop whenever he came upon a village. When he met people whom he saw take disadvantage of others or use their power for evil, he would kill in his efforts to deprive them of power.

Raven traveled for many years along the coast of the Tlingit territory, first travelling south, having started in the north until he had gone so far south, beyond Tlingit territory until he reached the Mink people at which point he turned around and continued back the other direction. He did this north south, south north journey for several years. Not until his work along the coast was done, did he head inland along the Stikine river all the way to its source. He also traveled along the Nass, Skeena, and Taku Rivers and all of their many streams never staying in one place for very long and never traveling far off from the water ways.

Through his inland journeys he met the Kaska, the Haida, and other nations to the east. Later in life, when Raven had done all the work he could do, he traveled back out to the coastal regions guided by the setting Sun until he disappeared mysteriously. The only suggestion is that he may have gone to live with the Kanu’gu and other ancient ancestors on an island far out into the ocean where they believed weather was created from.

The cult of Mithras

Paganism, then into History or World Mythology

The cult of Mithras is one of the earlier Pagan cultures of the Persians, and one of the most widespread and mysterious of the world’s cults. They’re mentioned as far back as the writings of Plutarch, but we know relatively little about what actually went on in their rites and rituals which tells us they were Grandmother shamanic cultures in their beginnings.

What we do know, however, is that the Raven played an integral part in the cult’s mythos. Mithras is credited with killing the sacred bull which was the destruction of the shamanic cultures, and, in doing so, creating life from the different parts of the bull. In many depictions of the moment of killing and creation, a raven is perched on the bull’s back.

For those who were initiated into the cult of Mithras, there were several levels through which they could progress. The lowest level, whose members were little more than servers during ritual feats, was called Raven (corax). Raven’s role in nature was messenger and as scavenger—these new initiates into the cult were scavengers of the thoughts, ideas, and knowledge of others, and it was also the raven were messegers for the Mithras, gathering information in the same way.

In Greek mythology, ravens are the ancestors of prophecy according to the political Apollo cult, and was victory for the rising kingdoms that overthrew first the tribes (shamanism) and then the pagans, this is why it became a symbol of good luck, success and messengers in the mortal world of trouble brewing. In the cult of Apollo also had a white raven (and crow) and they were used as spies against women, it was once Athena’s totem along with the owl but that had changed and only became symbolic rather than shamanic animism.

Ravens and crows in animism shape-shifting can be both shadowy or light. The demonic ravens and crows, whose animism souls have turned, because of the shadow human, will hang out in larger groups, especially those who are warriors gone bad.

The raven in Hebrew, are the first species of birds to be mentioned in the Hebrew Bible, and ravens are mentioned on numerous occasions thereafter. In the Book of Genesis, Noah releases a raven from the ark after the great flood to test whether the waters have receded (Gen. 8:6-7). In men’s laws, the Law of Moses, ravens are forbidden for food (Leviticus 11:15; Deuteronomy 14:14), a fact that may have colored the perception of ravens in later sources.

Raven from the Sutton Hoo shield Anglo SaxonIn Sweden or the Viking cults, Ravens were known as the ghosts of murdered people, be that from war and the military or from individual mishaps. In later paganism, the Vikings came, and in their Nordic traditions Odin appear flanked with two birds on a 6th-century bracteate and on a 7th-century helmet plate from Vendel, Sweden. In later Norse mythology, Odin is depicted as having two ravens Huginn and Muninn serving as his eyes and ears.

Huginn being referred to as thought and Muninn as memory.Each day the ravens fly out from Hliðskjálf and bring Odin news from Midgard. The Old English word for a raven was hræfn; in Old Norse it was hrafn; the word was frequently used in combinations as a kenning for bloodshed and battle. Which means in Religious and Pagan eras, the black was seen as a masculine attribute for killing and war.

Chinese Mythology and Legend

The three-legged raven or crow is commonly found in mythology and art of East Asia, specifically China, Japan and Korea. The bird inhabits and is a representative of the sun. It is a bird ancestor the earliest forms is a tripedal footed crow still found in modern-day China. 3 legged crowEvidence of this earliest bird, was the Sun-Bird motif (animism ancestors) or totems, excavations from around 5000 bce from the lower Yangtze River delta area. This Sun-Bird was also observed in later Yangshao and Longshan Cultures. The Chinese have several versions Sun Crow tales. But the most popular depiction and myth of the Sun crow is that of the Yangwu or Jinwu, the “golden crow”. According to folklore, there were originally ten Sun-Ravens or Sun-Crows which settled in ten separate suns. They perched on a red mulberry tree called the Fusang, literally meaning “the leaning mulberry tree”, in the East at the foot of the Valley of the Sun.

This mulberry tree (some say hibiscus), was said to have many mouths opening from its branches. Each day one of the sun crows would be able to travel around the world on a carriage, driven by Xihe the ‘mother’ of the suns. As soon as one sun crow returned, another one would set forth in its journey crossing the sky. According to Shanhaijing, the sun crows loved eating two sorts of mythical grasses of immortality, one called the Diri (Chinese: 地日; pinyin: dìrì), or “ground sun”, and the other the Chunsheng (Chinese: 春生; pinyin: chūnshēng), or “spring grow”.

The sun ravens would often descend from heaven on to the earth and feast on these grasses, but Xihe did not like this thus she covered their eyes to prevent them from doing so. Folklore also held that, at around 2170 bce, all ten sun crows came out on the same day, causing the world to burn; These are celebrated in the Mid-Autumn Festival for variants of this legend.

In Chinese mythology and culture, the three-legged crow is called the “sanzuwu” and is present in many myths. The earliest known depiction of a three-legged crow appears in Neolithic pottery of the Yangshao culture dated from around 5000 to 3000 bce.  The culture flourished mainly in the provinces of Henan, Shaanxi and Shanxi. The sanzuwu is also of the “Twelve Medallions” that is used in art, fashion, sacred robes, etc. Mural from the Han dynasty period found in Henan province depicting a three-legged raven.

 
Western Han silk painting funeral procession banner found in the Mawangdui Han tomb of Lady Dai (d. 168 bce), depicting the lunar three-legged toad and moon rabbit and the solar three-legged crow. The most popular depiction and myth of a sanzuwu is that of a sun crow called the Yangwu or more commonly referred to as the Jīnwū or “golden crow”. Even though it is described as a crow or raven, it is usually colored red instead of black.
 

f46ffd9de8bf0384f5ea3c26c8401c71In Chinese mythology, there are other three-legged creatures besides the crow, for instance, the yu 魊 “a three-legged tortoise that causes malaria”.  The three-legged crow symbolizing the sun has a yin yang counterpart in the chánchú 蟾蜍 “three-legged toad” symbolizing the moon (along with the moon rabbit). According to an ancient tradition, this toad is the transformed Chang’e lunar deity who stole the elixir of life from her husband Houyi the archer, and fled to the moon where she was turned into a toad.


The Fènghuáng is commonly depicted as being two-legged but there are some instances in art in which it has a three-legged appearance. Xi Wangmu (Queen Mother of the West) is also said to have three green birds (Chinese: 青鳥; pinyin: qīngniǎo) that gathered food for her and in Han-period religious art they were depicted as having three legs. In the Yongtai Tomb dating to the Tang Dynasty Era, when the Cult of Xi Wangu flourished, the birds are also shown as being three-legged.
 

Korea – Three-legged crow flanked by dragon and phoenix. In Korean mythology, it is known as Samjok-o (hangul: 삼족오; hanja: 三足烏). During the period of the Goguryo kingdom, the Samjok-o was considered a symbol of the sun. The ancient Goguryo people thought that a three-legged crow lived in the sun while a turtle lived in the moon. Samjok-o was a highly regarded symbol of power, thought superior to both the dragon and the Korean bonghwang.

 

Although the Samjok-o is mainly considered the symbol of Goguryeo, it is also found in Goryeo and Joseon dynasty. In modern Korea, Samjok-o is still found especially in dramas such as Jumong. The three-legged crow was one of several emblems under consideration to replace the bonghwang in the Korean seal of state when its revision was considered in 2008.[15] The Samjok-o appears also in Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors FC’s current emblem. There are some Korean companies using Samjok-o as their corporate logos.

 

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Japan – In Japan, the crow, with its three legs is a common depictions of Yatagarasu, or “eight-span crow,” an enormous crow of divine purpose, which was most likely a thunderbird in origin. It is divine itself and an ancestral crow. The appearance of the great bird is construed as evidence of the will of Heaven or divine intervention in human affairs.

In Japan, the crow has also been a symbol of the sun since ancient times, appearing in Japan’s earliest written works. It is a holy creature and a servant of the sun goddess, Amaterasu.  Originally Yatagarasu was depicted with two legs, but in the 930’s ce, the Chinese myth of the three-legged crow made the bird smaller and with three legs and thus merged into the story of Yatagarasu.

Although Yatagarasu is mentioned in a number of places in Shintō, the depictions are primarily seen on more modern Edo wood art, dating back to the early 1800s wood-art era. Although not as celebrated today, the crow is a mark of rebirth and rejuvenation.

 

Yatagarasu as a crow-god in later history, is a symbol specifically of guidance. This great crow was sent from heaven as a guide for Emperor Jimmu on his initial journey from the region which would become Kumano to what would become Yamato, (Yoshino and then Kashihara). It is generally accepted that Yatagarasu is an incarnation of Taketsunimi no mikoto, but none of the early surviving documentary records are quite so specific.

magpie ‘the cunning prophet‘ , they are associated with divination, prophecy and the symbolism of bridges.

Magpie

As a totem, Magpie is known as ‘the cunning prophet‘ and they are associated with divination, prophecy and the symbolism of bridges, walking from one world into the other and back. Its called the heavenly bridge which takes great strength and many dangers to overcome.

Magpies represent risk taking and come into our lives to help us use our instincts to our advantage which border the clever or even stealthy.  It represents the ability to balance, not only of physical, but the balancing of any strong opposites in our life.  The taking of joy in personal change, to let go the old and find the new with confidence and clarity.  Intelligence, adaptability and success are all traits of the magpie.

In Bulgarian, Czech, Hungarian, Polish, Russian and Slovak folklore the magpie is seen as a trickster and thief and is connected with human interactions and other animals which live around humans, wild and domestic. In Sweden, it is with Nordic pagan witches as one of their totems. Magpie is considered cunning and thievish, but also the bird of huldra, the underground people. Magpies have been attacked for their role as predators, which includes eating other birds’ eggs and their young. They are the ultimate trickster, much more than crow and raven. But there is no real evidence of effects, that as predators they dwindle songbird population growth rates.

In Europe, magpies have been historically demonized by humans, mainly as a result of superstition and myth. The bird has found itself in this situation mainly by association, says Steve Roud: “Large blackbirds, like crows and ravens, are viewed as evil in British folklore and white birds are viewed as good”. These are based on medieval European folklore, associated with a number of superstitions and surrounding its reputation as an omen of ill fortune.

In Scotland, a magpie near the window of the house is said to foretell death. In Korea, where the magpie is celebrated as “a bird of great good fortune, of sturdy spirit and a provider of prosperity and development” is a very positive omen. Similarly, in China, magpies are seen as an omen of good fortune and good luck. This is even reflected in the Chinese word for magpie, simplified Chinese: 喜鹊; traditional Chinese: 喜鵲; pinyin: xǐquè, in which the first character means “happiness”.

The thief, the cunning prophet or good luck omen, Magpie certainly plays both sides of shadow and light, and challenges your personal belief and folklore.

The Qixi Festival, also known as the Qiqiao Festival, is a Chinese festival that celebrates the annual meeting of the cowherd and weaver girl in Chinese mythology. It falls on the seventh day of the 7th month on the Chinese calendar. It is sometimes called the Double Seventh Festival, the Night of Sevens or the Magpie Festival.

The festival originated from the romantic legend of two lovers, Zhinü and Niulang, who were the weaver maid and the cowherd, respectively. The tale of The Weaver Girl and the Cowherd has been celebrated in the Qixi Festival since the Han Dynasty.[8] The earliest-known reference to this famous myth dates back to over 2600 years ago, which was told in a poem from the Classic of Poetry. The Qixi festival inspired Tanabata festival in Japan and Chilseok festival in Korea.

 
References: wiki, A shaman (goddess) on a horse with a bird on her shoulders. VII-VIII centuries. Kurgan of Cherdynsky district, Perm region. Bronze Permian Animism; heartmoonblog.com, aboriginal eaglehawk and crow, aboriginal rock art; Susa Morgan Black @ http://www.druidry.org/library/library/animal-lore-raven, magpie art: https://www.etsy.com/listing/206123540/magpie-otherworld-nordic-bird-viking; W. Bogoras. (1902) “The Folklore of Northeastern Asia, as Compared with That of Northwestern America” American Anthropologist, 4:4, pp. 577-683. Jump up ^ Menovschikov, G.A. (1974) Сказки и мифы народов Чукотки и Камчатки (Tales and myths of the people of Chukotka and Kamchatka) Nauka, Moscow. 636 pp. (in Russian) Jump up ^ S.P. Krasheninninkov (1972) Description of the Land of Kamchatka E.A.P Crownhart-Vaughan, (trans.) Portland: Oregon Historical Society. (originally published in 1755). D. Koester (2002) “When the fat raven sings: mimesis and environmental alterity in Kamchatka’s environmental age.” in People and the Land, Pathways to Reform in Post-Soviet Siberia, ed. E. Kasten. Berlin: Dietrich Reiner Verlag. W. Jochelson (1908). The Koryak. Leiden, E.J. Brill. D.S. Worth (1961). Kamchadal Texts Collected by W. Jochelson ‘s Gravenhage: Mouton.

Sacred Juniper

Elder Mountain Dreaming Juniper Tree and Berries 07

Phoenix of Elder Mountain – I collected some Juniper and have been stringing Juniiper beads the last few days, usually the seeds are hard and you can’t get a needle through it or need a tiny drill. I have tried but its so time consuming. This time I found a batch of junipers trees and thought I would give it another try and I must have picked them just before the seed has hardened.

Now I have to wait to see if they get dry and crumbly for the necklaces, which is the other issue I have had, once strung. I have juniper beads in all of my rattles and rattle making from the first time after I met an Apache man my age who we became friends and he took me deep into their lands to pick some from their shaman’s juniper tree. He asked me if I wanted to walk in the desert another two hours to meet his shaman but with my collective work entering its tenth year I was already exhausted just hiking the desert to the tree. I told him next time, I wished I would have had the strength back then to meet the shaman.

I also use juniper in some of my sacred ceremonies and some sacred art work, but mostly in bowls or adding it to my folk smudge. I hang my strings of any types of beads I make, such as Rosehips, Madrone or Juniper etc., in a dark closet, so they can dry and process with the night energy or moistness. I work with elementals of air, fire, earth water and night, day, sun, moon in all things I do as a shaman in seasonal cycles. Night  (dark drying), has seemed to help with most things I string in the way of natural berries into beads, and that helps it keep the moisture in.

Since night (moon) is moist (called fertility outside the context of women or birth or agriculture), and day (sun) is a dry or drying element within natures principles, I just apply the natural element to what even makes things grow and die. Also witch hazel took the stickiness off my hands and needle very easily after I was done. I found a nice article, and added a few of my comments along the way…

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Juniper – Originally published at Beltane in 1996 by Rowan:

Juniperus communis is a shrub, typically growing from 4 – 8 feet with the leaf form of needles. Its color ranges from a deep blue, to deep or light green and sometimes a bluish or blue-green tinge depending upon where it grows on earth. In some folk traditions, its called the needle yew. The berries are abundant, and usually take two to three years to fully ripen. When fully ripe, the berries are about the size of a pea and have a wonderful aromatic resiny pine scent.There is some evidence that the juniper may have been one of the first shrubs to grow as the ice sheets retreated 12,000 years ago.

Extremely hardy, juniper was able to establish itself on the emerging tundra and some even have thorns to have given protection from grazing animal to other, less well protected, trees. Hawthorne, a very old shrub tree as well, may have been one of the oldest tree shrubs also.

Juniper in the Kitchen

The Comanche and the Lakota American Indians use the berries of the eastern red cedar (juniper), eating them whole and also crushed as a spice for soups, meats, and stews. The berry is much smaller than that of the common juniper. It’s also sweeter and less harsh, without those “turpentine” qualities.

The berries can be eaten dried, fresh, chopped, or powdered to impart a sharp, peppery flavor to balance the richness of winter game, meats, soups, and stews. Right before using the berries, you can also grind and sprinkle them on meats as a seasoning, or make a juniper sugar for blueberry scones (add extra juniper spice if you’re using foraged eastern red cedar berries, as their flavor is more subtle).

Try chocolate sables with juniper sugar for a treat that’s not too sweet and more on the order of a European-style biscuit cookie. Juniper berries are also a traditional ingredient in making German sauerkraut and they pickle well on their own. On the savory side, the Wong family’s favorite is wintertime cauliflower soup with wild juniper. The pepperiness of the juniper balances the creaminess of the cauliflower exquisitely.

The whitish blush on the outside of juniper berries is wild yeast. You can make a sourdough starter by mixing a cup of flour, three or four berries and 1/4 cup water in a glass jar. Let sit in a warm place, loosely covered, until the mixture begins to form. Remove the berries and use the starter as you would any other sourdough starter. Some people have also brewed beer with the yeast from juniper berries. Whenever using wild yeasts, be wary of contamination by other bacteria. If you notice any discolored patches or growths in your starter, discard it immediately.

*Note:  Their are about 50 species of Juniper shrubs, trees and only a few that are poisonous, the only one I could find that was, is: Juniperus sabina, toxic and consumption of them is inadvisable.

Juniper Tree ©2006 Edith Krueger-Nye.

Juniper Medicinal

Common Benefits of Juniper Berries –
A source of Vitamin C and the mineral Cobalt. Juniper is used to address digestion problems including upset stomach, intestinal gas, heartburn, bloating, and loss of appetite, as well as gastrointestinal infections. It is also used to treat urinary tract infections and kidney and bladder stones. Historically, juniper berries have been used only to treat bladder or kidney issues and infections and were used in tea as a way to disinfect surgeon’s tools. The antiseptic properties of juniper berry helps aid in the removal of waste and acidic toxins from the body.

Improved Digestiom – If heartburn and indigestion are a problem for you, juniper could help ease your discomfort. Juniper is one of a group of herbs referred to as bitters or astringents because of their somewhat bitter flavor. The University of Michigan states one of the main benefits of bitter herbs is their ability to improve digestion. When you eat them, bitters cause saliva, digestive enzymes and stomach acid secretions to increase. This increase in the body fluids needed for digestion helps in the break down of food and, thus, improves digestion.

Diuretic Properties – In addition to improving overall digestion, eating juniper berries may relieve symptoms of bloating and water retention. According to the University of Michigan, juniper is a diuretic, meaning it increases urine output. Diuretics are useful when attempting to combat excess water retention in the body, which is often caused by eating too much sodium or from inflammation and injury. The University notes that because of its diuretic action, juniper may prevent urinary tract infections by helping to flush out toxins and bacteria in the urinary system.

Antimicrobial and Antifungal Properties – According to researchers at Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, juniper berry combats both gram-negative and gram-positive bacteria. Gram-negative bacteria are the cause for E. coli, pneumonia and gonorrhea, while gram-positive bacteria cause Staphylococcus aureus. S. aureus is a common infection that people acquire in hospitals and it is often resistant to antibiotics; you have probably heard it called MRSA. Since pharmaceuticals are often ineffective at treating MRSA, juniper berry could be an effective alternative to help combat infections.

Elder Mountain Dreaming Juniper Tree and Berries 107Role as an Antioxidant – According to a study published in the medical journal “Pharmacology Research,” juniper berries contain high amounts of antioxidants. These compounds help to neutralize free radicals in the body, which eventually lead to the development of diseases like cancer, arthritis and cardiovascular disease. Antioxidants also maintain healthy, youthful skin by fighting wrinkles and lines, aiding in cell regeneration and reducing inflammation.
 

Juniper essential oil is used in alternative medicine, most commonly aromatherapy and say approximately 100g of berries are required to produce 1 g of oil, which is at its most concentrated just at the time that the berries finally ripen. Harvesting usually takes place around September and October when the berries tend to make the final “push” towards maturity. The oil is relatively light, of a greenish-yellow color and has a balsamic, woody and fresh scent. It tends to evaporate quite easily so must be kept well-stoppered and away from heat.

The Hopi native americans and the Navajo people boil up the green parts of the shrub and consume them to treat stomach disorders. A few drops of the oil may be used cosmetically mixed with distilled or spring water to produce skin care products which, used as a wash or cleanser, are useful for oily skins which are prone to infection. During the 1918 Spanish Flu epidemic, which is believed to have killed some 20,000,000 people worldwide, a number of hospitals experimented with spraying vaporized essential oils into the atmosphere of flu wards in an attempt to prevent air-borne infection spreading.

Juniper was one of the oils which was found to be particularly effective – the others being lavender and thyme, which have both come back into use more recently as antiseptics and disinfectants. According to Robert Tisserand, juniper twigs and rosemary leaves used to be burned to purify the air as well as being widely used in Slavic (Yugoslavian) folk medicine for treating virtually everything.

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Juniper Peasant Traditions

Dreaming Folk Traditions – Some of the old records of divinatory significance of Juniper, say that the appearance of Juniper in dreams has several meanings: “If one of dreams of the Juniper Tree itself, there maybe a sickness that juniper berry or needles may help with. To dream of gathering the berries in winter, denotes prosperity and health.

To dream of the actual berries signifies that the dreamer will be appreciated for something. To a woman who is pregnant, to dream of Juniper foretells the birth of a male child.” The largest body of folklore concerning Juniper comes from Iceland where it was traditionally believed that Juniper and Rowan could not grow together because each creates so much heat that one or other of the trees would be burn up. For sage and folk smudge its a good combination if heat and fire is needed to purify shadow.

It was considered not a good idea to bring sprigs or the wood into the house together unless you particularly wanted your house or area to burn. (I can attest this to be true because when I brought some home to make necklaces and sprigs for my folk smudge, the hill around the lake near here caught on fire that night ~Phoenix).

Another Icelandic belief has it that if you are building a boat, you must either use both juniper and rowan wood or use neither of them in the boat, otherwise it will sink. In Wales it was said that anyone who cut down a juniper tree would be dead within a year, while in Newfoundland it was believed that wolves and bears are repelled by juniper wood and for this reason people who kept stock would ensure that juniper wood was used in building enclosures or stockades in which livestock would be kept.

Also in Newfoundland it is believed that you will always find water under a juniper tree, though this seems to contradict the natural history of juniper which, as mentioned above, generally grows best on limestone or chalk soils which are usually well-drained.

Juniper Mystical and Magic Traditions

Manifestation – for incense intended for use in rituals where manifestation is an important part of the working with charms, prayers, evocations, where lots of smoke is helpful to the working (which adds the power of the air element).

Purification – as an incense or “smudge” in most rituals of purification, including the blessing of houses and other buildings or land, and for dedicating new working areas and temples; for animals; and for purifying people, for example baby-blessing ceremonies, women’s initiations, sweat lodges etc.

Magical uses – From the point of view of witches and occultists, the juniper’s most common use is in the making of incense, for which both the dried berries and needles and the essential oil are used. The berries, having a relatively high oil content, tend to burn with a good deal of smoke and any incense containing them is likely to produce a good fug if that is what appeals to you. Paul Beyerl has little to say about juniper except that it is generally recommended for rituals connected to good health and banishing anything injurious to health, while Smith, gives the main correspondences as being with Jupiter and the element of fire and suggests that appropriate uses are in incenses for retention and strength.

A small bunch of twigs or a few berries in a pouch can also be hung in the rafters of a building or over the lintel of the doorway as a longer-term protection. They are used in rattles by the native americans, especially Navajo and Apache. Juniper in Folklore by F Marian McNeill records that in the Scottish Highlands on New Year’s morning, juniper was burned in both house and byre to purify buildings and inhabitants. This is echoed by the tradition in some parts of Cornwall and Brittany of using juniper wood in the Beltane fires, between which cattle and other livestock were driven as a means of purification.

Burning juniper berries in the house in the three days leading up to Summer, Autumn and Winter Solstice fumigates the house and welcomes new energy. In parts of Czech Republic and Slovakia, juniper berries are used to fumigate homes, churches and stables to expel demons and other unwanted soul roaming shadows. There was also a folk medicine custom in some parts of the South West of England of burning the wood and needles close to a sick person.

This practice is closely allied to the above New Year customs and presumably recognizes that the vaporized oil released into the air had some beneficial purifying effect to dispel infection. Like many plants, there was a definite ritual which had to be followed when pulling or collecting juniper so that the power and essence of the plant was not lost.

In the case of juniper, it had to be pulled up by the roots, the branches made into four bundles and held between the five fingers while intoning the appropriate prayer of thanks when harvesting. Unfortunately versions of pagan and goddess chants were heavily Christianized, but as we reclaim what was taken, we just repaganize or goddessize it:

“I will pull the bounteous yew, and give thanks for the elements, in the name of the ancestral mothers, fathers, grandmothers and grandfathers. I ask the power of the light of the tree (or great spirit) to keep one safe from drowning, dangers, confusion and shadow when the Juniper is used in sacred ways.”

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Juniper Folklore

Grimms’ Fairy Tales, The Juniper Tree: A pregnant woman eats the berries of the juniper tree which grows in the garden of her house, as a result of which she becomes ill and lives just long enough to give birth to a son. She is buried beneath the juniper tree and after a period of mourning the father remarries; in time a daughter is born and the stepmother becomes jealous, seeking to gain all of the father’s wealth for the daughter.

She first physically abuses and then kills her stepson and feeds his flesh in the form of a stew to his father. His half-sister collects his bones and lays them beneath the juniper tree in the garden, below which the boy’s mother had been previously buried.

Amidst a magickal mist and flames the bones are transformed into a bird, who is able through its song, reveal how he was murdered. By singing his song to various enchanted listeners, he is able to gather to himself the things he needs to dispense justice. He is clearly intended to be seen as a magical bird as his plumage is described as being beautiful and he is able to lift aloft a huge millstone which he subsequently drops onto his stepmother and kills her. Once justice has been dealt out to the stepmother, the bird is transforms back into the child and normality is resumed.


The shamanic initiatory elements within this story are unmistakable. The sequence of events may be summed up as: the initial death, the return to the womb, the transformation spirit fires (ie cooking pot), the stripping of the traveler’s flesh from his bones (dismemberment or the shamans wrath); and the consumption of that flesh by the traveler’s life guide/father, the return of the journeyer to the ancestors and the world tree, the shape-shifting and subsequent re-integration and return to the normal world.

The shamanic pattern is so strong that it seems the evil stepmother, was just a late edition corruptions added to this traditional story, which appears to have been strongly changed by the addition of a stereotypical evil woman or witch (projection by the Christian morality who always have to find someone else that is evil besides themselves). I am tempted to believe that this story originally concerned the first steps of youth, as a shamanic initiation of a young man and young woman, or, alternatively, puberty initiatory rites for the girl and boy. The essential magical or transformational elements all takes place around or beneath the eponymous juniper tree.

The image of the bird as a symbol of shamanic magical bird (soul) flight. In the context of The Juniper Tree has a connection to our shamanic past and to shamans themselves. And because water grows under the juniper tree, this correlates to the shamanic World River of the prehistory or grandmothers tradition, than it does the World Tree, because of the eternal evergreen and its moisture and water quality, that is self fulfilling. 

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Three Juniper Trees are native to the Pacific Northwest

western juniper: most common; combination of needle with a white resin dot;
common juniper: grows primarily near treeline at high elevations;
Rocky Mountain juniper: northeastern Oregon; needles don’t have resin dots.

Sources: Photo’s of hand picked Juniper by Phoenix; Tree Juniper Tree ©2006 Edith Krueger-Nye; http://www.whitedragon.org.uk, oregonstate.edu/trees/conifer_genera/juniper.html; healthyeating.sfgate.com/medicinal-benefits-juniper-berries-7691.html, healthyeating.sfgate.com, Juniper berries by Kate at gardeningandgardens.blogspot.com

Pluto’s Cave, Fire and Water Purification Rites

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By Phoenix the Elder – I want to preface this article of this ceremony at Pluto’s Cave, located in Juniper Flats National Park, near Mt. Shasta… I have only done two ceremonies in the last thirty years with people outside my circle of apprentices, as a collective Dreamer (shaman). The first was the Wounded Knee areas with all the tribes, seven years before Standing Rock, in order to prepare for seven years when Standing Rock happened.  The other was my group of dreamers from my ‘shut down’ Grandmother Moon page to go as a dream group to England around 42 ce and do work there. The third time is this ceremony at Pluto’s Cave.

My apprentices are the only ones who have participated with me, in all my other ceremonies. Most of my work and ceremony work since 1997 has been done alone because of the nature of my fated work, but after 2008, I decided to let them join me in ceremony if they mastered sobriety of every hallucinogen, mild like pot or more server.

This meant they had to suffer and burn off toxins for two years solid before I even talked or worked with them… burning off toxins of their previous decade or two, from any uses of any…

Occasional wine, ayahuasca, pot, synthetic drugs, alcohol, anything for pain, shamanic drugs/plants, huachuma, andachuma, aguacolla, wachuma, dmt, peyote, wine, mescaline, mushrooms, echinopsis pachanoi (San Pedro cactus), anxiety, sleep disorder, bi-polar, etc medications, shamanic plants of any kind. Basically anything that can and does alter the emotional body, soul body perception bodies and animism bodies.

That in itself, detoxing from a decade or two of even one item, is very painful because all of our organs and muscles have been saturated even with once a month or twice a month usage and the ‘reaching out’ for soothing emotions or mental things, stops completely. Pot in itself takes 9 years to clear the astral soul body and that is a very mild perception altering substance but after a decade does its damage to the astral body (soul or unified chakra body). When they start to detox, they have painful releases. Detoxing is harder than most people think once they move into detox action, its very challenging.

After they do this for 2 years, my apprentices can then talk to me and actually start to work with me as a student. Needless to say, I not only have to be extremely focused and stay in purity to deal with demons and shadows, but I have found no men warrior enough to withstand my work more than three or four months, and only a very few rare women sacrifice this type of lifestyle on a personal level of commitment to work with a real apprentice. This clear way of being, minimizes demonic energy and gives more power to the light souls. Here is a video example of the mess left from such drug/plant ceremonies…

https://www.facebook.com/ElderMountainRetreats/videos/1213477262131579/

The Ceremony

This ceremony at Pluto’s Cave was my second one, and the next level of it’s ritual purification, the first one was two years ago and took about eight hours and was completed by me and two apprentices assisting. This second ceremony was to reinforce that first ceremony and clear out what has occurred in the cave over the last two years.

I was joined in this ceremony by Marilee NiEtain of Soul Tribe Sanctuary, and one of her patrons Laura. Certain Soul Tribe Sanctuary supporters also joined us from their home (and country) in the purification ceremony. Linda Nelson, a spiritual Healer and Phil the Elder, were present and supported with their drums, intentions and healing, and Phil also had his flute, they are both from Yreka, California.

Three of my long time Apprentices (six years or more) and a few new Students joined with a prayer or two for holding space. The two apprentices stories are at the end. Also a few patrons on my Elder Mountain Dreaming joined to add support (from their home and country).

We entered the parking lot of the cave area, just as the partial eclipse full moon was happening. Marilee’s purification rite, occur before we started, even before we walked to the actual cave. She had to go and ‘release’ in nature and had fallen. I was waiting for her to return near the car, and instinctively I started to play my drum, a blood drum (long story). I played it very strongly and loud and then stopped abruptly.

Marilee had returned back to where I was standing and said she passed out and then when I began to play my drum, she could hear it very faintly as if it were in the distant, barely hearing it, and then the sounds got louder and stronger until she was fully into this physical realm with her conscious self (my drum is really loud).

Realizing she had passed out, she said she checked herself over, a little shaken, a bleeding arm, then got up, came back over where I was standing, and said, all in all, that she was ok. I poured some of the moon water I had made the night before for the ceremony, onto her arm and it scabbed over right away.

She had gotten her purification, chord cutting and cleansing even before we left the parking area. We walked to the cave and Marilee, Linda and Phil stayed at the top ridge of the cave and held space and did what they needed to do to support. Laura had gone into the cave and then spent the remaining time during my set up and ceremony time before the drumming started, at the gateway or opening of the cave. I spent the hour and a half set up time (ceremonial purification boundary whispering, necessary for myself and the others there), before I could even begin the purification ceremony process inside the cave.

I had no apprentices helping me this time, in the physical with all my stuff, which I usually have one or two giving service and assisting to carry a drum or two or a bag. The three other elders there had to take care of their things and their strength, so it was a bit taxing at first and at the very end, but I knew once the drumming began, I would get the full surges of energy, which I did.

I also go into trance generally starting the day or night before a ceremony and will dream also, so if anyone asks me questions or tries to engage in rational thinking or present normal human things when I get started on a ceremony, I am not really there, my trance and shaman come forth, the slayer ready to do the work, my apprentices understand this but others do not. My shaman power builds a day or two before an actual ceremony and the Moon Huntress dreamer (shaman) is not the nicest person when working at remaining in the shamanizing focus for the duration.

Once we reached the rim, the others stayed above near the rim and I stepped to descend the rocky downward natural steps towards the cave, when all of a sudden, my big buffalo drum jumped out of my hand, rolled all the way down the descending hill, rolled all the way into the cave, took a left and laid down exactly where it wanted me to set up the underworld circle (trap), which had a huge stone, with a bunch of small stones laid up against it.

That was the area where my circle in the cave would be set up for the ceremony, and to push the demonic energy back down through a second underworld hole opened up by mother earth when I asked (when I began the drumming part of the ceremony). I was here at this cave for three things, the first was because of seven non-incarnated, red eyed demonic black astral bodied ones had escaped and have been roaming the wilderness between Mt. Shasta and Redding, California (which is about an hour and a half drive on the highway).

mount shasta's vent, pluto's cave

This ceremony was not an eradication of the red eyed demonic forces, it was creating an energy surge with guidance into the marked off circle I made, and then a force of pushing them down in a re-entry to a darker level of the underworld, where they would not return again. The forceful pushing would have been from the light prehistory ancestors I called and the magnetic force of pull of mother earths underworld.

When I began drumming within the first ten minutes, I heard the dark dogs of the underworld barking, loud and clear. There are guardians dogs of the underworld who are the light side of the dark, and then there are the demon dog souls of human men entrapped in the underworld where their karmic astral demon (regular demon) body remains – unless loosened by human behaviors of many kinds. And these dogs were “way to close to the veil on the other side” and I have been monitoring.

These dogs were the demonic kind, barking and the pull of the sound of my drum downward told me I was at the beginning of a specific level of the underworld that was opening. Those demons dogs have gotten closer to the in-between gate (called the veil), to here, compared to twenty years ago. The job had to be done relatively fast, so nothing escaped and the bigger seven roamers who escaped were sucked back in through the force of energy in between the veils by mother earths consciousness and movements.

I had been attacked only once by one red eyed demon three years ago at the volcano in Maui. I was between waking and sleep. Most of them at the Maui volcano, I saw them only venture out, but stayed near the opening and do not venture off that volcano. The seven red eyed black huge demonic bodies at Shasta have been venturing out much farther distances from the caves entrance… they were about 30 miles away. I saw the seven, three weeks ago near the Lake Siskiyou which is about an hour south of Mt. Shasta.

This is why I was there to do the work when Marilee and Linda began talking about 14 circles made around the cave itself and she alerted me to the issue. It set off the alarms of the seven red eyed huge demonic bodies from the underworld, and these things have no living attachments to them. All past life demon roaming in or out of the underworld, have a living incarnated human that belong together.

I only experienced one red eyed demon “living astral body” who had fully possessed a young man, who was one of the organizers “hemp” fest in Seattle in 2000. That was during the late evening and a random man showed up next to me who I knew had manifested from the light. Light and dark are always balanced and equal across the board (if its a light shadow, then there is a weaker light, etc). I was not prepared back then as my death initiations were only half completed, and then finished completely early 2017, so there was nothing I could do but walk away.

I even tell my apprentices to never engage, speak or look at red eyed demons in waking or in night dreaming because of the horrific connection of that energy, and the slow demise of ones mundane life rapidly turning into something that is not manageable and a crisis. I also had work to do at this ceremony for two clients and one apprentice. It was to sever demonic aspects that were invading their personal space and one was a family curse from a past life.

My work at the cave was to separate the clients/apprentice from what happened in their personal life with the shadow roamers causing havoc and attacks. For my apprentice – it was a red eyed demonic energy that had possessed an “ayahuasca” man who does the shamanic ayahuasca ceremonies. He wanted to bring that hallucinogen into her personal spiritual circle at an organic farm in Turkey which she belonged to. She stood up and stood against it in their circle they had when he presented about doing the plant journey for them.

She could no longer could be apart of her circle there if they chose to do it. He got extremely angry at her twice in the circles duration, she felt the rage of the demon in her empathic body (as a healer). She drove home and left the farm saying her goodbye to those she had grown close to over the last four years, and that night she was attacked by the red eyed demon in her bedroom.

The second person needed a family curse lifted and removed, and the third person was attacked after she went to Peru to do her first hallucinogenic ceremony (mescalera). I was also doing a cutting ceremony for myself from an issue that happen at Umpqua hot springs, where its not monitored nor watched by the forest service and a popular hot spot for the roaming travelers who do a lot of shamanic plants, pot etc. I sat in the springs and had gotten a bacteria that I have been doing intense detoxing for the last year and a half everyday. Its all healed, but wanted to make sure I cut chords with the origin.

Now the bigger interference… There are thousands of huge military (ufo) ships that have been roaming free at all the big volcanoes of earth, and are right across the veil since the 50s and they are the ones responsible for puncturing the gates of the underworld open through the volcanoes with their need to fuel up on the magnetic fields of these volcanoes. These are under the dominance of the telepathic ancient alien (humans) who have no soul, spirit or physical body, those were lost through millenniums, from their own karma and its final destruction of their soul and we cannot reincarnate without a soul. Many spiritual groups have many, many different names for them, chose the one you use.

California Photograph - Inside Plutos Cave by Loree Johnson
California, Inside Pluto’s Cave by Loree Johnson

What I was purging from this cave back into the underworld were no regular demons (soul shadow demons) or dark djinns (mental body astral demon bodies), or corrupted past life shadow soul roamers of incarnated humans, or even the demonic levels of humans’ darkest karma freed from the underworld from shamanic plants/drugs/pot (weekly users).

The seven who escaped the lowest levels of the underworld from Pluto’s Cave are way beyond these other levels of darkness. They are still bound by the rules of daylight (and the veils) and cannot enter our space, but at night they can cross the veils. These are solid black demons that are huge, about 14 feet tall, and ones’ in which have no jurisdiction being out of the deepest layer of the underworld at all.

Lenticular cloudsThe military activity behind the veil at Mt Shasta since 1988 has been sucking up the magnetic energy of Shasta itself, like all huge volcanoes on earth, and soul raping those who live in the area or huge volcanoes, in their dreams at night, hence the accumulated cloud moisture forms of the human (soul) moist cloud called the astral body aligning with Lenticular cloud moisture. In 2015, the ships (ufo) military ships (behind the veil) began moving their ships to Mt McLaughlin in Medford, Oregon, about 2 hours north of Shasta. The Lenticular clouds shows the size of the ships and will now begin to cease at Mt. Shasta, and will begin to appear at Mt McLaughlin and already have.

Mother earth is the only one who can open her underworld, not even the most powerful shamans on earth can. The military-cia operative in their cross-veil ships, here in the U.S. and the Russians and their ships and Saudi Arabia with their military (ufo) ships are the main three of earth. They all do a puncturing with electro-magnetic energy that has been busting holes into the underworld at the volcanoes, as they have at Shasta, and Maui, this took them thirty years of uninterrupted work to do it and that is starting to free the demonic energy.

I set up my altar in the cave, to attract the escaped red eyed demonic seven back into the cave, and the energy to attract also with mirrors, sharp objects (small deer antlers), water and moon water, and particular wind whispering (exorcism ancient chanting which pulls energy towards me) and then I was ready to go into my trance in-between waking and dreaming, with my drum, building the energy to lead all to that altar.

I put a circle of dried roses that I collected last week, circled it again with my staff to keep anything outside of that circle safe and lock in everything outside the rim above inward and lock out the other shadows from the cave areas. I then drew then around those two circles, with the moon water, which is a Romanian tradition.

It took about 45 minutes to drum the entire process and I asked the wind, to come into the cave, so I could feel the sensation on my body right before accumulation and then it was done, and the shit went down and mother earth closed it up and sealed it. And then it took about 20 minutes for me to do my thanks and clear my things.

Back at the car, Linda, Merilee and I talked for awhile, and they said during my drumming a big dragonfly had come (which i know whose soul that is), then they said a big yellow butterfly and a bunch of white butterflies were outside the cave. We were sitting there having something to eat after we were finished, a really loud cicada was buzzing around us and dancing a few times making sure we noticed it. That same cicada came to my window today as I was writing this article.

Cicada folklore represents the 13 and 17 year cycles (I am starting my new 13 year cycle in October 2017), and they also represent in Chinese folklore the free soul, the immortal and immortality.

Two of my apprentices assisted our ceremony and this is their share …

My Turkish apprentice: I found a nice spot outside, did the protection circle as you taught and had a bowl of spring water to receive released/resolved energies during the healing, then grounded and centered myself and set intention to holding space for your ceremony and performing a healing to help cleansing of Pluto’s Cave.  As soon as i started, heard you’re drumming so powerful, and I just listened for few minutes, felt the beats in my body.

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Hattusa, Turkey

Then saw an army of scientists in the darkness, all male and wearing white lab coats. they’re just standing still, like a zombie army. Then I was in cave near you, I saw you drumming near a big fire, i watched the bright fire of purification for a while. Then had a vision of a native man, he’s in cave, hiding to the side, and stepped forward to be seen for only a moment. He’s in his thirties or early forties maybe. Has black long hair and strong face, bright eyes. His face’s painted in black, yellow and white, kind of like zigzags. I looked at him, then he stepped back to shade.

The healing took a little bit longer than an hour for me, it’s so intense at the beginning. checked the energy before i finished, it’s well. At some point during the time, I had another vision that the red eyed demon that attacked me, cracked inside out and shouted out a terrible scream, then seemed it sucked in a black vortex of the underworld and disappeared.

The next day, I took a walk in the park, all the dogs in park started to bark, one was just behind my back, a very aggressive one. i thought, “never mind, i am protected” i didn’t see it or hear its paw steps, it just growled and barked 2-3 times, then all was silent.

Oracle at Delphi Greece

My apprentice Burnt Stone: Delphi Temple in Greece – I assisted by going to the Temple at Delphi (Greece) today and did ceremony. I drew a sacred protection circle and then spoke my prayers and intentions. I set the intention to join Phoenix in ceremony and to help support the ceremony at Pluto’s Cave. I also said a prayer of gratitude and honor to the prehistoric ancestors of the light who cared for this place Delphi and said a prayer for them to push out the unhealthy influence of Apollo/Dionysus cult who had taken over this place from the women of Delphi, for its health and balance if it is for the greatest good of all concerned.

I also said a prayer to help connect Delphi to Pluto’s cave in a sacred dreaming way if it is for the greatest good. And last I drummed a prayer to the Greek goddess Eris (who I have had symbolic synchronicity with) and honored her and asked humbly to become her daughter and to work with her. I drummed and when I was finished just sat peacefully.

After I was done, ten minutes later a guard (who had been blowing his whistle at people who had been crossing the roped off area) came up to me and told me it wasn’t allowed for people to play musical instruments there. Which was kinda funny because there is no visible rule of that, I think he just made it up. So I just smiled and said “ok, all finished” and he smiled and walked away. He had walked right up to where i had placed my boundary circle and didn’t cross it. So after that I picked up the circle, packed up my drum, walked around a bit and then left.

Burnt stone’s dream the night after: I woke up from my dream from last night. The big one was I woke up in the middle of the night ( half asleep/half waking state) because I felt the energy all around me shift and get very intense and the I heard in the dream a single intense dog bark. I woke up and grabbed my drum and held it by me but gradually the feeling faded and I was awake again. Then the other dream I had was just me in places with little kids trying to steal from me. And every time they stole something I had to grab it back and speak sternly to them (probably local Greek children on the dream planes).

Update: All 3 of my clients were cleared of the demonic shadows and the family within 4 days and that work is now closed. The seven red eyed demons are back in the underworld through this lava tube (the side cave, not the main one, because a new underworld opening had to be made, from where they were coming out in the main tube). I am sure those who joined us from their homes, but did not share their story can do so if they wish and I will add it to this article.

Blessings and peace, Phoenix the Elder

 

 

Mamuthones

Mamuthones Donna, Mamuthones Nonna… sono il primo nato, prima che gli uomini vestiti nei miei vestiti.  Mamuthones Woman, Mamuthones Grandmother…  I’m the first born, before the men dressed in my clothes.