Category Archives: Sabbats and the Great Wheel

Faith. Joy. Hope.

JOY is something that rises from within, an inner fountain, clear, rushing upwards. It is our inherent response to our connection with oneness. A burst of joy can make us giddy.

When we HOPE, we prop a window open to a brighter place so that light streams into our dark world. It does not call to any specific outer force or being.

FAITH is opening oneself completely, to allow the Spirits of Kindness and their whole ecosystem to flood in and perform their loving work. An act of faith is taking a seemingly unreasonable action with the knowledge of forces in play.

DEVOTION is love fest of mutual devotion between oneself and the Spirits of Kindness. It is an event, a conscious practice.

These wonderful things may be a natural human experience but they don’t come easily for many of us when living in this world. What I mean is, you are not alone if you can’t relate.

Joy is something I knew nothing about until I was in my forties. No wonder I was so annoyed with the “fluffy bunny” spiritualists of the time. They drove me mad. I remember one time I confessed to a new friend over the phone that I was spiraling, and if I kept heading in that direction, that the spiral would lead me to suicidal ideation. She reacted severely. (This was the second time in my life I was yelled at for talking about suicide).

She angrily shouted, “Everyone is at the party, where there is a well of light and joy. Why can’t you join us there?”

When I finally cleared enough trauma to feel the natural phenomenon of joy, I experienced it as a fountain. It is a song. I know I am happy when I catch myself singing.

Hope is something I always had, but in a more tragic sort of way. Like someone lost in an endless landscape of despair just crying inside that things must get better some day.

Not like today when it feels more like a choice – a responsibility even. I take this action and it clears my metaphysical environment. Life must go on.

Devotion and faith? Well as an ex-Catholic, those two have been tough ones. After my particular fall from the church (and it was a fall) I vowed to never again swallow, hook line and sinker another philosophy. I would have my own thoughts. So it was ten years into my pagan and shamanic practices until the topic of faith and devotion started opening up for me.

It started with my shamanic teacher in the early 00s. I almost left Janine’s classes because she was really quite so fluffy bunny. She referred to her spirits as ‘her team ‘ and smiled a lot about it. But she also showed up to class in her sweatpants and T-shirt unlike other teachers who dressed like they were going out on the town. I thought that part was cool. I realized she was genuine and I watched her in quiet awe. I didn’t get it but I loved it. She really cared about me too.

After she died, I came across a musician who performed kirtan in the most sublime way. And her voice is gorgeous. The call and response, the heightened sense that came from the practice. I volunteered to perform my light projections for her shows for free so I could support her vocation.

I think of what a devotional practice looks like in shamanism. Journeying for the simple purpose of spending time with our friends on the other side. Mediumship, inviting the benevolent beings in for a moment of time. And of course, repetitive praise chanting in the traditional way.

There can be momentary devotion without faith in the day-to-day.

On Monday morning, I went to the  beach in this dark, dark season of wet. I went to clear my head after too much time in my cave applying for jobs and stressing over the fact that I have six weeks of unemployment left. Walking across the foot bridge over the railroad tracks, I saw a whacky woman coming towards me. She had a crazy colorful hat and she was carrying a little boom box that she was singing to.

She came closer and I recognized her. A few years ago I met her by the same water. She was singing and because I missed my music jam, I stopped. I had my flute, as always, and played for her. We sang together. She told me that she came every morning to sing to The Lord. I recognized beauty in her devotion and loved that about her even though I would never sing to The Lord.

She is a small, elderly woman from somewhere in Asia. As she walked towards me on the foot bridge, we exchanged greetings and I said, “I remember you. We sang together.”

She remembered and laughed and said in that loud joyful way that the Vietnamese women do when they greet you at the nail salon, “How are you? “

Without any warning I almost burst out crying. I said, “I am not doing good.”

“Not good. Not good why?”

“I cannot find a job.”

Well, this elder gave me a good, long lecture about faith. She told me about how when her husband died and she didn’t think she would make it. How things worked out.

She insisted. “You have to have faith! You have to have faith and the Lord will take care of you!”

And she said, literally three or four times, “But you have to believe it for it to happen. You have to believe!”

I thanked her and asked her name. Song. Of course. Song.

As soon as I turned away to walk down the hill, I was bawling. It felt so good to cry. So good. How do we make it through life without this delicious release?

This Imbolc morning, I went to the lake to play my flute. The crows were moving downtown, having left the Bothell roost. The sky was filled with their river of raucousness which appeared and faded, horizon to horizon. I played screechy sounds to them but then relaxed into a tune. I played both high and low flutes and when I was done, I saw a pattern in the clouds like two curved brush strokes with an opening in the middle, swooping down to the land. I turned to the water and look at the rafts of ducks in the distance. Two small groups fluttered into the air, outwards, landing on the water again. They left an area of clear water in the middle. The scene was like a door I could just glide through into a life that was easy, with fertile ground. 

I looked up to the sky again and I knew what faith was.

Tasara Jen Stone

Creating Your Meaning for Winter Solstice

Each sabbat can mean many things depending upon where we are in our life. Sometimes we need to focus on just one aspect of the season. Other times we are having a layered experience.

It is darkest night of the year!
Feel the warm embrace of the crone.
Face your fears.
Lie down and rest.
It is time to let go.

It is the return of light!
Make proclamations.
Dream new things.
It is time to celebrate the light.

There have been times when I have even made a distinction between the dark dreaming, the dreaming that happens when the Spirits of Kindness enter our dreams and the dreaming that happens when we start to co-create with the spirits.

I wait and I wait for inspiration. How will I engage with the energies? How will I express? What is authentic?

This year, mere weeks before Solstice, I reached a milestone and my life went through a sudden, total change for the better. I was able to leave behind trauma, entering a new, promising environment. This brings to me all the things you might expect: shock, relief that it’s over, survivor’s guilt, fear and disbelief, joy, waves of healing and…. an empty void.

So for me this year, my Winter Solstice will be about gratitude and acceptance of this blessing. It will be about trust in the good things to come and a surrender to the Spirits of Kindness, allowing them to fill this void inside me with the starlight of the Solstice. It will also be about letting go. Praise be.

What does Winter Solstice hold for you? What is just right for you this year? Answer these questions and your holiday will be potent.

Blessings and love to you all.



Trial by trial,
stand strong.

Witness the layers peel
as you hold the mast of your being
your rock
your you
all stripped back
to reveal you
glistening in the light
unlike anything else.

It’s you.

There you are,
your power
completely familiar
and now impossible to forget.

Once a Muggle, Twice a Witch

Hello friends. Instead of waiting for the Big Spiritual Passion to return before writing, I thought I’d share what it’s like waking up from a long stretch in the mundane. We all have fallow seasons. Why not honor them?

Much love,


The waiter at the 24-hour diner is in a good mood. He is chipper. It’s too early in the morning to have any customers yet he’s waiting for me at the door, menu in hand with a smile on his face like he’s got a secret. This makes me happy.

I hope it’s because he woke up next to the right person this morning. But now I’ve heard him giggle. He might be on the spectrum. The wonderful spectrum where the stars are brighter and innocence is somehow ever-present. 

I tell him that it seems he really likes it here.

He says, “I sure do! It’s like my second home.” 

I tell him I am looking for another job and he says, “You should apply here.”

I half laugh, then cut the knee-jerk condescension I sensed in myself, hoping I did it before he noticed and say, “Maybe I will.”

The cook is bitching about another one of the cooks that doesn’t show up. His campadre, an older woman, is trying to remind him to be grateful for having a job. He doesn’t want to hear it.

Each time she cuts in with advice, he says, “I know. I know. I know.”

But he’s really mad.

She says, “You have to focus on your own work because if you don’t, someone else will take those hours. They’ll take that money.

He says, “You’re right. You’re right. You’re right.”

The waiter yells under the heat lamps, “She just doesn’t want to work here!” And he laughs. I’ve been having my meal and he’s come over with the check because his shift is almost through.

“Ohhh! ” I say. “You’re tired!” I was trying not to assume that a waiter at a diner is taking drugs.

The morning crew is showing up and the rhythm of the diner is kicking in. The cooks have switched from English to Spanish.

I get my to-go container and it’s the most horrific thick plastic. I tell the waiter I think I might be going to the third circle of hell for it. He tells me I’ll be okay.

I’m stalling inside my car because he’s come out of the store and I want to know more. He gets in his car and I resist the urge to follow him. I’m behind him at the driveway. He turns left and I just miss his bumper sticker. It has the words We are witches.. but I can’t get the end part so I don’t know if it’s a joke or if he’s really a witch. I could go back tonight when he’s back at work and read it. I don’t think he’s autistic. He might not even be on drugs. He’s just a really incredible person. 

It’s easier to say these things without knowing the details so we can enjoy the story – without getting so deep into it that we run into trouble. 

There is a lesson here for me in how fucking condescending I can be. I should take an example from my elder. He never gives advice to me even when I’m trying to pry it out of him. One should never give advice unless solicited, is what they say. If he wrote it (which he would not), it would sound like One should never give advice. He even joked about it yesterday and said to me , “If you’re ever looking for advice again, now you know the person not to call.”

In case you’ve wondered why I’m up so unspeakably early, it’s because the Spirits told me to go watch the crows this morning. It’s two days before Summer Solstice and I’ve been saying again and again that I gotta go out and see the crows because it’s off-season and I want to know how many there are. I tried to go back to bed, but I got a kick. I said out loud “Really?”

And then I hightailed it to the roost. 

As I was getting into my car, I was noticing that it was my gut that was directing my decisions. It wasn’t a mental projection I needed to manifest like everybody’s yelling at you to do. It was instinct – and this is the first time I’ve enjoyed writing in over a year.

I love the edges of things. Twilight, back roads, off-hours. Lots of people stay up late for the same reasons, thinking they’re special but us morning people, we get it. It’s not just wildlife that becomes more pronounced. All creatures come out. Human personalities reveal themselves. There’s more magic, more to discover. 

I’m at the beach and it’s practically raining, just the way I like it. Now that I’ve watched all the crows disappear from their roost, I’m back closer to the city and there they are, yelling, continuing on their morning. These surfer shoes from Hawaii are perfect for walking on Pacific Northwest rocky beaches and getting your feet wet.

“It doesn’t have to hurt to be good, Jen.” 

I had a manager tell me that over twenty years ago and it’s still there like a billboard in my mind revealing more layers of the same truth. I think when things are hard, it makes me feel more proud when I accomplish them. But the same things that I worked so hard on before, I can just do. Life without drama is some kind of peace.

Progress Note #1:  There are some things that I just do now, instead of making it a big deal and having to win a victory, so I can tell myself I did a good job.

I might be too hard on myself with this one. It may have truly hurt before. What’s missing now is the passion in the completion. My notion is that I will have passion about different things and these will become menial tasks. I’m mostly talking about work but I also noticed this in the house. For instance, cleaning the kitchen.

Progress Note #2:  When I have a new thought or meaningful experience, I don’t assume I’m the only one having it. I think of all the other people thinking the same thing. This is important not only because I feel less alone but because it takes me out of that special club of people that think they are better than everyone else.

Progress Note #3:  There is a new glimmering shiny revelation that has arrived. I can even touch it. It might be possible that instead of either being attracted to or running like hell from addicts, I am merely not triggered. Perhaps I could even appreciate them and love them in a different way and not be pulled underwater.

People are starting to show up in the park. Meaning that there are eight cars here now and the parks department guy is finishing his chores. Time to go. Time to go back into the house. It’s true. I’m driving out. But still, there’s an older couple waltzing in the parking lot. I’m not kidding.

I’m home now, 9am, drinking the rest of my glass of wine from last night, and my wet jeans are warming by the fire. When I was at the beach, I was seeing dragons and I wanted to fall on my knees and weep to feel the magic again.

You see, the Spirits of Kindness beached me in the mundane a few years ago and left me there. I accepted the mission and I’ve learned things about myself and behaving in the world that was a long time coming but I was starting to feel a little bit abandoned. The long haul is not over, I know. I can’t jump into the flow of a passionate vocation just because I’ve completed my studies, because that flow is no longer there. I don’t even know what the vocation is anymore. I’ll have to walk a little further.

Maybe that’s the point. Maybe it’s about the long game. In the meantime, I’ll treasure every speck of magic that comes my way.


You’ve Come So Far

And She said,

“There will be times in your healing process when you will be reminded that you don’t need to fight anymore. You don’t need to endlessly scan the land, looking for trouble, as you once had to. Each gate you go through, there will be a clear sign of certain dangers falling away. You will forget those signs and need to be remembered.

But here’s the clincher. In the lack of danger, there will be a void that will seem as frightening as your life was before. You will feel like you are floating out into space, into the unknown.

Remember your mantra, ‘If lost, return to self.’ 

There is always something to hold onto. It is you. The gorgeous light you have found inside yourself. Sing your song. Kiss the blessed earth and don’t forget to enjoy the garden you have cultivated within. Survival skills do not understand gratitude practices. They seem ..not very useful when things need to be done.

Walk into this terror. Feel it enliven your body. It is the first good terror you’ve come across. Remember the gates. You know what you have survived, what has left you and what is still to be mastered. Trust the truth of what you have accomplished. Trust the changes you have already made in your life. 

This work you have done – you have earned your own trust, so use it.
What does life have to offer when there is not imminent danger? It is not what they tell you. Go find out for yourself. Go make the life you wanted when you were held down.”

Hold on, my friend.

My heart goes out to those who are emotionally suffering under the “shelter in place” order. I know. It can be excruciating to stay present while in the depths of one’s own disorganized self, especially if one has known great tragedy. And who in this great world has not? If not in our families and relationships, by the influences of corporate greed, which has swept us away, again and again from our true heart needs, while gouging Mother Earth, who literally is us in every way imaginable.

Maybe there is some energy rerouting that can happen. Think of the awe-inspiring, creative force each of us contains. We all have designed our own flow to keep our lives stable, investing our energy in chosen places, people, media, activities and mental structures. Now that our normal balance is upset, our energy might be spilling over, stopped up. It might be striking out. It can burrow down and create depression. Or it can just freeze and all those things we have been avoiding are right here, maddeningly in the forefront.

Hold on, my loved ones. This is a rare visit to the sacred forge of transformation. The power is building up and the heat is rising. This is the time to use every tool in your toolbox, every lesson you have learned about taking care of yourself, to rest, to ground, to breathe deeply and to listen. To dance, speak, sing, to ponder. To let yourself freak out. To write, break bonds, reach out or let go. You know what to do.

The quiet voice that has been whispering to you, all this time, is still with you. Listen. Listen. Allow true inspiration to come from the depths of yourself, the earth, just as the Spring tendrils curl and reach upwards in a dance towards the coming sun.

I know you. You can do this.

Tasara Jen Stone

Prayer for Us All

Great Mother Earth, I am listening. Your cry, your warning could not be clearer, your Spring ever sweet in your instruction.

You have taken many lives in the wildfires, storms and floods. Now you take more in this pandemic.

I call out to the Spirits of the Land. I have not forgotten you. My heart aches for your resurgence. I call out to the Fey, to revel bright, to strengthen Mother’s voice for all to hear, to feel in the winds, to taste in her precious foods, to be intoxicated by, when her blossoms give and give yet again.

May we learn our lessons gracefully this time. May the need for drama and extremism fall away. May the stillness be long enough for us to hear our heart of hearts. May we listen. May we turn the tides gracefully and with ease and wisdom. May we tend to all the sick of the world, human and other, with grace. May those that pass on, pass gracefully, and may they find their way to the other side by the grace of the Spirits of Kindness.

May we remember our citizenship in this world. May we level our eyes to every living being. May we wield with love and bring ourselves back into balance, before it is too late, before she balances for us, and we must start again, as we did millions of years ago. May this be the time that we listen. May this be the time that we understand.

Tasara Jen Stone

Perching Before Samhain

Grandmother pulls her shroud
and the rains, the warm rains,
it rains inside this endless cup of grey.

Grandfather blows his crisp leaves
and the smell, the earthly smell, 
the smell brings me to myself.

Tis the blessed season of endless twilight, 
of richly dressed sunrises,
of memories fine, memories drawn,
memories, ancient borne,
come from the crack of the horizon.

As I gaze through branches brown,
sienna tangled in my hair
I know my home, my home,
my earthly, earth home.

She waits for me in the shape of a rook,
on the other side,
in a cave,
in the dank
the darkness.

And I savor the moment, her beckoning,
for she is no longer my huntress, my dread.
She is my mistress, my mother, my crone.

For I have been through canyons dark, seen mirrors sharp.
I have walked the valley of the dead,
been tangled on the rocks with no matter,
I have been, again and again.

Under the wraiths’ long cry,
the songs I could not hear
the banshee did not lie,
and then I found my footing.

She has shown me the way, through myself and back again.
And this time.. I relish the time, the time.


The White Bird Rising

I am the white bird rising, she who rose in the sky over my body when my back was broken, whose feathery gust sent grace into my life.

I have listened to the cackling of crows.

I have risen from the cauldron with the white raven,

and now, I am told, it is time to be these things I so love,

to fly,

to bless,

to spread grace.