Saturday, October 30, 2010

Last Quarter Phase - Yew Tree

"I'm one with the Goddess
and open to Her Wisdom."

24th Day of the 11th Lunar Cycle
Ruled by Medusa
Lunar Tree Cycle of Gort/Ivy
3rd Day of the Celtic Tree
Month of Gort/Ivy
24th Day of the Witch's Lunar
Cycle - the Cycle of Phasma
Priscus - the Days of Ancient
Moon Phase: Last Quarter - 8:45AM
Moon rises: 12:29AM EDST
Moon sets: 2:22PM EDST
Moon in the Fixed Fire Sign
of Leo
Ceridwen's Cycle of the Moon
Lunar Meditation: The relief of
the problem's dissolution.
Sun in Scorpio
Sunrise: 7:46AM EDST
Sunset: 6:20PM EDST
Solar Question for the Day: ""Which
ideas and structures have you
Lughnasadh (Gwyl Awst) Quarter
of the Day
October 30th, 2010

Last Quarter - The Last Quarter moon is the HARVEST phase - the plant gives her live so that others may continue theirs. The Last Quarter Moon (or waning Half) rises just after midnight and sets after the noon hour. Astrologically, the Moon is square the Sun. She is visible from the time she rise till she sets.
Those who born under a last quarter moon have a powerful internal life of reflection and transformation. They can assume different roles while balancing their internal and external worlds. The keywords for the Last Quarter Phase are: realighment, revision, integration and cleansing. It is the time in a lunar cycle to take closing action, to follow up and complete the activities begun at the New phase. During this phase you become aware of what is and is not working with respect to the achievement of your goal for the cycle. The movement is toward integration. Open to your success. MANIFEST GOAL. Be responsible.

It is Saturn's Day - the Day of Manifestation and Structure, Assessment, and Responsibility.  Take time to reflect on the qualities of this day's energies and of the Last Quarter Moon's energies.

The Yew Tree

   The slow-growing Yew is one of our oldest trees. It is an evergreen with a flaking reddish bark. The female tree, for there are male and female, bears a bright red fruit. It reaches a maximum height of around 50 feet after which it tends to increase in girth, often having more than one trunk growing from one set of roots.
   The Yew was sacred to the Druids and ancient peoples, and was thought to be a guardian of the dead. It is often found growing in churchyards and there are many reasons for this. Churches were often the only place with solid walls around them preventing the ingress of livestock. The Yew, being a favored tree for making bows and arrows since the Stone Age, therefore had to be protected from cattle and the like. Conversely, as it is highly poisonous, valuable livestock had to be protected from eating the Yew. However, as some churchyard Yews are thought to be around 4,000 years old, it is more probable that the Churches were built near Yew as a sacred place.
   All parts of the Yew are poisonous, especially the fruit and seeds, and protective gloves should be worn if it is necessary to be handle it. There are no recorded historic medicinal use for the tree, although it is being experimented on with reference to treatments for cancer today. Magically the Yew is linked to the salmon, the word Eo being an ancient word for both, hence is a tree of knowledge. Because of its links with death it is particularly useful as a focus for meditation on the afterlife.
[From "The Real Witches' Year" by Kate West]

Yew: Tree of Resurrection; Tree of Eternity

    The yew is exceptionally long-lived, but difficult to age accurately. After 400 to 500 years, yews become hollow, making dating techniques have now revealed that the yew probably has the longest lifespan of all trees. They are ever-green with dark-green glossy needles that grow opposite each other along the branches, like the barbs of a feather. Very little grows in the shade of an ancient Yew grove. Yews come into flower early, usually around February, with male and female flowers on separate trees. The male flowers are cone-like and yellow, shedding clouds of pollen in dry weather. Female flowers resemble tiny green buds. The ripe fruit holds a single seed enclosed in a bright scarlet, fleshy cup known as an aril. Birds love them, spreading the seeds in their flight after they've eaten them. Yew seeds are slow to germinate, usually needing two or three years before they will begin to grow. The lower branches of ancient yews eventually reach the ground and take root, forming a strengthening outer trunk that supports the tree and protects its older heartwood. This habit of renewal through transformation, combined with the tree's longevity, earned the Yew the name of Tree of Eternity.
   In hollow trees the inner wood has the color and appearance of the flesh of a flayed animal, especially when wet, and the tree appears to bleed when cut - qualities that greatly enhanced the sacred reputation of the Yew. Yew wood has immense endurance.
[Excerpts from Jane Gifford's "The Wisdom of Trees"]

Wasted Food

   "Shoppers often buy fresh food with the best of intentions, but they seem to be in denial about their daily schedules. For a family with two working parents or a single adult logging in long hours, preparing meals at home is less of a given than it used to be. Habits have changed, largely because of our busier lifestyles. In 2007, Americans spent 44% of their food dollars at restaurants or food stands of one kind or another instead of grocery stores  and food markets. Whether we have food delivered, order takeout, or eat out, it often means not using the perishables in our fridge.  
   Those familiar decisions - bypassing the chicken thighs we may have brought a few days ago because they were on sale, and ordering a pizza instead - have an impact. It means that we'll squander the time, effort, money, and fossil fuels that were expended to grow, process and transport that chicken. When we don't eat our head of lettuce, the environmental cost of growing it will be naught, as the food won't nourish anyone. Instead it will probably be fed to a land where its rotting will emit methane, a greenhouse gas twenty-five times more harmful than carbon dioxide. With global warming we are reaping what we sow."

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