I work with Slavic-Balkan Moon Charming through Water, when moisture needs to rise. That can be emotional issues within folk healing, which is done when the mental body and mental activity has terribly repressed and imbalanced the body’s relationship to the emotional body. I also do Fire charming rituals, which are strictly for purification, an emptying out. Emptying cover a wide range of issues, from addictions, self abuse, or even the root foundations of physical healing, its also called chord cutting.
In folk healing, charming can also be done with song or dances applied to healing, as long as the intent is set for “transformation and change” of the persons life. Charming has also been called magic, but shamanism and witchcraft are very different when it comes to magic. One is human based and the energy going outwards, the other is strictly nature and applied only to the self. Both are done within the phases of the moon of course, as paganism sprung and was birthed out of goddess cultures, which were born from shamanism.
The important natural magnetic energy of all living things are receptive and this is what is the magic aspects of nature, within shaman’s rituals. A shaman’s healing work or healing ceremonies are all based upon the experience of the shaman herself who required decades to heal their deadly diseases and that has given them the medicines through many experience (non plant, non drug shamanism).
Prehistory was not base on the sun and time, or the outward flow of energy, electro-energy. It was and still is based on the cycles and phases of the moon and no-time, on deeper emotional energy and living energy of feeling by all plants, humans, birds, animals etc. The flow of receptivity. Charming then, is the relationship to the environment and it’s energy of magnetic reception, through a personal application of it is utilized with natures flow. That is a very important factor because its energy uses are receptive and if the intention and basis is not balance and the shaman balanced, then it will backfire causing more harm to the shaman.
The natural rhythm of the full moon is about releasing emotion and the new moon is the points of transformation. The earth’s natural calendar for millions of years was the combination of the cycles of the moon and woman’s cycles of bleeding in unison, along with the seasonal changes of nature, and the equinoxes and solstices.
New moon ritual that included sacred tattoos can also help as a visual reminder for women to become in alignment with nature. Sacred tattoos also done in ceremony can energetically connect ones dreaming and intuition with the tattoo itself. I have done all of my vision quest tattoos this way.
When the moon work is added to both tattoo with sacred or purity rites, the tattoos transference of dreams becomes stronger. In the beginnings of lunar cycles, within a ceremony and full moons which carry the most power of endings, releases and letting go, we learn and begin as a practice, flex-self awareness. This means that to become more free in expressing our truth through emotions, the more we are willing to work with our fears. These contributions actually are the energetic power that feeds the symbol of the tattoo and makes them applicable as sacred items on the body.
Within the cycles of sickness that begin to release from awareness practices, one must commit to begin a journey of sobriety for groundedness, and flexibility during struggles of changes. Changing moon is a path for those who are serious about their health and spiritual journey and willing to be flexible or flex-self. Without being flexible to personal fears, then stagnation and rigidity remains. All of this is done with strict and healthy boundaries in relationship. To advance spiritually, it must all be worked with together.
Larger rituals for community are set around the moons of the yearly solstices and equinoxes. The most powerful healings for individuals or community occurs after the Autumn equinox, especially right before dusk. This the the most powerful time that our personal releases from our emotional body can be released.
When doing Moon Charming, moonlight illuminates water, adding more of nature’s power to magnetic energy within receptive water, not just in a physical way, but an energetic way. Setting bowls of water outside, in a quiet natural place, asking the water to receive the light of the moon and to bring blessings and healing from its light is basically all that needs to be done. On the great shift eclipse August 17, 2017, I did an eclipse moon charming. I did it specifically for dreaming and drank the water a little each night and set my dream intention. The more our heart is into this kind of magic, the more powerful it is. Working with our perception body (emotional body and soul body), with magical pure water, is a great purification elixir (drinking it). Moon charming is added to rituals to bring a receptive quality to our path, as the most powerful rituals are the most simplified.
When I do chanting in my shamanic work I am generally alone and I never do moon charming with my drum. Drums open doorways and stir up shadow and sickness (shaman’s drums), or lightning and thunder energy. They shouldn’t be used when moisture is needed because its more of a nurturing energy. Fire and Water rituals are different, they are both for healing and purification.
The photo below of the Chukchi woman has her three charmed tattoos on her cheek and mouth. All are and still are today, for protection of shadows. They say the dead, but as most real shamans know, they are for the shadows of living people, that roam outside their body or have been freed from the underworld. The charming rites of shamans goes much deeper than medicine people . For some reason when we fell asleep, those who have ancient traditions or modern ones, think that even forces are not known and the dead, but they are not.
When I received my tattoos for all of my vision quests, they were charmed and they serve my purposes as well in the same manner. I did ceremony with each tattoo artist which I made them also participate, they received a blessing as well. Those were my water rite or moon charmed tattoos. Now I begin a series of tattoos for my fire rites and they will complete my 40 years of shaman’s initiations of death, transformations and rebirths.
This Chukchi tradition is that after the death of a relative, the Chukchi fastened a single bead to a lock of hair to repel the “spirits of disease”.
THE EARTH & THE ESTONIAN STAR BRIDE
Long ago before grandfather took over all things spiritual or leading community, grandmother’s teachings were that “star” means “night”, not the night sky. Night meant the inner reality that is feminine, hidden, unconscious and perceptive. The emotional body in its highest expression along with the soul. That is what star meant. When the astronomers took out astrology, especially in first through third centuries, star took on grandfathers teachings, which was the physical and science spiritual concepts of other beings off planet. When we return to wholeness, the other half that has been missing a few thousand years, we leave those night tales and paranormal tales go and return with two feel on the ground and remember that star means night and night means our inner life.
According to a Chukchi legend, the Earth (Nutenut) lives in a large house. The story tells that the Sun, Moon, Sky, Sea, Dawn, Fog and Mist were visiting. They all wanted to marry the Earth’s beautiful daughter. The story resembles to some extent the Estonian myth of the Star Bride yet their endings are different.
In The Star Bride the maiden picks the Star to be her fiancé. In the Chukchi myth the maiden does not get to choose a fiancé, but suitors compete and the winner marries the bride. However, none of the aforementioned suitors wins the contest, but a Chukchi shaman Jettögöt, who raises his staff and touches every rival with it.
As a consequence the touched side of each suitor catches fire and they all flee in panic. And Jettögöt marries the maiden. By the way, polygamy is not forbidden among Chukchis and is unofficially practiced to our day. As can be seen from the above text, the Sun already has a wife called Kavra-ŋŋa.
THE NORTH STAR
The North Star (in the Chukchi language Iluk-eŋer ‘the Immobile Star’, ‘the Nail Star’ or Unp-eŋer ‘the Driven-in Stake Star, and the ‘Pole Star’ is cast in the central role among stars. V. Bogoraz Tan claims that the latter version of the star’s name is common all
over Europe. The North Star in the firmament is like a pole or stake driven into the ground around which stars circle, resembling horses or reindeer tied to a pole. Its house is near the Zenith and through its smoke opening it is possible to travel between worlds.
Due to that opening the North Star can be seen in all worlds, and the underworld as well as in upper realms, while other stars and constellations are not the same in different realms. At the same time it is believed that the North Star’s house is higher up than other houses. Its house is made of ice-like substance and to its top is fixed a lighthouse, like source of light.
In his book Andres Kuperjanov lists the names different peoples call the North Star by the Golden Pillar (Mongols, Buriats, Kalmyks and Altaian Tatars), the Iron Pillar (Kyrgyzes, Bashkirs and Siberian Tatars), the Lonely Stake (Teleuts), the Golden Stake (Tunguses). All these ethnic groups picture the North Star as an immobile stake or pillar or a stake driven into the sky. The same applies to Chukchis. The Chukchi name of the Nail Star has a close resemblance to the Estonian name of Põhjanael ‘Northern
ARCTURUS & VEGA
In the Chukchi worldview stars ranking next to the North Star as to their importance are the so-called heads (in Chukchi Leutti). Heads are formed of two stars. The First Head is Arcturus in the constellation Bear Watcher (Chukchi Janotlaut, Estonian Karuvalvur
‘Guardian of Bear’) and the Second Head is Vega in the constellation Lyra (Chukchi Jaatlaut, Estonian Vabamees ‘Freeman’, The Sun, the Moon and Firmament in Chukchi folklore.
According to Chukchis these stars are cousins. Travelling in the nighttime tundra Chukchis use the mutual position of the heads and the North Star as a reference point to find the right direction. Arcturus is sometimes also called the leader or the guide of stars. Chukchis turn to both of the stars to seek help when healing. In case of diseases a sacrifice has to be brought to Arcturus or the First Head. In case of stomach ache the sacrifice and spell have to be addressed to Vega or the Second Head.
STAFF STARS, ORION AND CELESTIAL BODIES
The Estonian Staff stars are the three stars in a row in the constellations Aquila (Old Staff Stars) and Orion (New Staff Stars). The stars a (Altair) and g (Tarazed) in the constellation Aquila have a special meaning to Chukchis. They are called by the name Pettigún. The Aquila constellation brings the new year to Chukchis for it appears for the first time on the horizon on the winter solstice. Reindeer herders as well as Chukchis living in the coastal areas brought sacrifices on the occasion, at least formerly. Especially suitable were fat male reindeer. At other festivals, blood is sometimes sacrificed and reindeer are exchanged for symbolic statues made of plants or snow.
Sources: Joan Miro stone painting, Hair repel from larskrutak.com, the Star stories from www.folklore.ee, Artist Remedios Varo