2019 Yule Altar (So Far)

I was excited as soon as Thanksgiving was over to put up my Yule altar. I’m not sure if this is the finished version for the season or not, but I liked the way it looked so far and thought I would share a pic:

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My favorite touches this year are the red Reindeer candle holder (from Walmart), and the glittery green pinecone. The silver glittery tree candle holder and the altar cloth are also new (I found both at Goodwill). The little cinnamon broom, jingle bells, and white star are from last year. I also sprinkled an assortment of seasonally colored tiny gemstones and several small healing wands on the table as well.

By the way, for this photo, I loved the way the candles reflected in the darkened window frame, so had to include that in the background!

Yule Colors This Year

For Yule/Christmas this year, I’ve decided to do a black, white, and red color scheme. Here is the first bit of decorating I’ve done:

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I’ve always wanted a black Christmas tree, so I bought a two foot one, and then decorated it with white lights, red tinsel/star, and bulbs/ornaments in all three colors. Now I need to find some other things that match to display around it!

For the Love of Anubis

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I took the above picture at the Indianapolis Children’s Museum we visited a couple weeks ago. Anubis has always been one of my favorite mythological Gods. Him and Bastet are definitely my favorite Egyptian gods/goddesses, although Thoth is up there on my list as well.

In case you are unfamiliar with Anubis, he is the one often shown with the black dog head. He was the God of embalming and the dead, and the lord of the underworld until later replaced by Osiris. It is believed that he was shown with a black jackal head because jackals were often seen in cemeteries at the time.

Anubis also attended the “weighing of the heart” after someone died, to see if that person was pure enough to enter the underworld (Duat as it was called back then). Each person’s heart was weighed against Ma’at (truth) represented by a feather. If the person’s heart was light and pure, they would go on to a heavenly afterlife, but if their heart was heavy and evil, they would be devoured by Ammit (the demonic devourer of the dead).

As much of Greek mythology was inspired by Egyptian mythology, I always see the figure of Hades as an outgrowth of the figure of Anubis (with some Osiris thrown in too, but after all, Anubis WAS lord of the underworld first!)

Review of Netflix’s “The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina”

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Last night I watched the first episode of the new Netflix series The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, based on the comic books that also inspired the 90’s tv show Sabrina the Teenage Witch. I was a big fan of the 90’s show, so I have been waiting with excitement to check out the new series, however, after watching the first episode, it is clear that this new version is much, much darker and less light-hearted than the older tv show!

I do like the new show so far, so I am not necessarily complaining, but I want to warn everyone that if you are looking for something similar to the Melissa Joan Hart Sabrina, you will not find that! I was initially a little bummed that Salem doesn’t really talk in this version, but I think it actually fits better into the show considering how somber this show is compared to the previous one.

I do like the actress they cast as Sabrina (Kiernan Shipka). I’m not huge on Ross Lynch playing Harvey, but maybe that is just because every time I see him I still see Austin from Austin & Ally. I felt like they did try to find actresses who resembled the 90’s versions of Aunt Hilda and Aunt Zelda, although Zelda is not nearly as likeable and is kind of mean instead of just serious and scholarly like the older adaptation. I do enjoy the character of Ambrose quite a bit and feel it was a good addition.

I have seen some viewers complain about the satanism elements included in this new show, and I can see why some people would find that upsetting, although it doesn’t bother me personally. Although, as someone interested in paganism and Wicca, I hope that viewers of this show don’t start thinking everyone into witchcraft is into satanism – a stereotype that has already existed far too long.

I do plan to watch the rest of the series and enjoy it, but as more of a horror/dark fantasy series than a comedy or silly teenage drama.

Pagan and New Age Books I’m Reading

So full disclosure, I think I’ve become a pagan. I’m still agnostic, I don’t believe firmly in any specific deity, although I do have a belief in a kind of universal energy that exists within all things. I guess you might call it a kind of animism which is typically a pagan belief system. I don’t ascribe to Wicca specifically because it has a few too many rules for my liking, so I am definitely an eclectic pagan. I do occasionally do little nature rituals, but I do what I feel speaks to me, not just following others’ ideas. I do enjoy reading about the various Gods and Goddesses because I believe they are important archetypes of various types of energy, but I don’t necessarily see them as beings actually existing in the physical realm.

So on to the video I’m sharing for today, this is just a brief overview of a few books about pagan and new age spirituality I have been reading recently: