Game of Saturn

The Game of Saturn

For the First time in 500 years, this study on the Sola-Busca tarot is available for purchase! Within this magnificent observational work are the liturgical and ritual traditions of the Elite amongst the Renaissance era and the secrets to the corresponding deck.

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July Featured Products

Book of the Month

The Witch’s Cauldron

by Laura Tempest Zakroff

From down and dirty practical uses to lofty aims of spiritual enlightenment, the cauldron is an all-purpose tool. So says Laura Tempest Zakroff in her book The Witch's Cauldron. Tempest's entry to "The Witch's Tools" series by Llwellyn focuses on cauldrons, and is somehow all at once accessible, inclusive, information-rich, and humorous.

Detailed descriptions of practical use, as well as cauldrons from history and mythology create a strong foundation for the rest of the book. The many ways our ancestors used cauldrons (Cooking! Fire! Drums! Rituals!) give us an idea of just how important they were, and helps to uncouple the cauldron with purely feminine associations. The cauldron played an important role in many myths, too, and Tempest walks through several of them. Each myth is followed with a brief consideration of the metaphorical purpose of the cauldron in that particular story.

The bulk of the book has to do with getting one's hands dirty and getting to work. How to attain a cauldron, use in ritual, spellcraft, and divination all get their own insightful, inspiring chapters. The work detailed here ranges from traditional to modern creative uses (Glittermancy!). The instructions are written cookbook-style, but with regular reminders that we, the readers, ultimately need to choose methods that are most practical to us. Some more experienced practitioners might roll their eyes at cookbook-style written spell work, but there's information to be gleaned here, even if you never intend to do any of the work Tempest is demonstrating with her examples. There's also an amazingly practical section about seeing cousins to the cauldrons we already all work with. Crockpots, bathtubs, stoves, washers, and more are all descended from the cauldron and can all be used as one in their own ways.

Lastly, we reach the most metaphorical part of the book. Tempest describes a system using three internal cauldrons that are in various states as a metaphor for energy flow or self-alignment. Rather than getting a botched version of the beautiful imagery here, please read the book. It's an interesting perspective shift. She also describes the human vessel as a cauldron, and offers insight as to how that idea can (or should) change the way we think of self-care.

Overall, this book is definitely worth the read. It is short but, goodness, it packs a lot of information into that space. Practical, historical, and mythological context provides a solid foundation for the remainder of the book. The sections on magick are remarkably well-written with a wide audience in mind. Practicality is a welcome theme that appears again and again throughout the entire book. Those who prefer to keep their work more cerebral will find something here as well. There is useful information here for both the beginner and the experienced witch, and is likely worth a few re-reads as years pass by.

Herb of the Month

Hibiscus

Hibiscus is a delicious ingredient in iced teas and sorbets. The rich red color lends itself to any liquid it is in, resulting in an amazing red color – like drinking rubies! We can thank our neighbors in the Middle East for first spotting the flowers of this shrub and trying them out. Their early work with this herb has brought it to the world. A traditional drink in some areas for guests coming in from the hot outside, this drink is legendary as a cooling and refreshing treat.

Oil of the Month

Ylang Ylang

Ylang ylang essential oil has a delightful scent. Didn’t like to one you sampled, try others! There are three extractions of this flower, and each one offers its own variation on ylang ylang’s scent. Ylang ylang extra is often considered the best, but follow your nose! The one you like best is the best one for you. Ylang ylang is thought to lift the spirit, calm the heart, and aid the skin. Adding a few drops to an unscented lotion could make the best lotion for someone who an anxious, has a rapid heartbeat, and certain types of skin issues. A fantastic scent that blends well with lavender, sandalwood, bergamot, and – for a great, gentle morning pick me up – grapefruit.

Stone of the Month

Jet

One of the most powerful and protective stones on the planet, Jet is a type of coal created from fossilized wood. It has been used extensively for protection and to fight off negative energies. Also known to be an anti-nightmare stone, it protects against psychic attacks, as well as insomnia!

Statue of the Month

Ganesha

Ganesha is a jovial Remover of Obstacles. Known for having the head of an elephant, some stories say that Ganesha was created from Shiva's laughter. Residing in the Root Chakra, Ganesha helps to support and guide all the other chakras. Use this God of New Beginnings to clear your path to expanding in joyous ways, in all aspects of life!

Talisman of the Month

Beleth

Beleth is one of the most feared spirits of the Goetia, the infamous 17th century Conjuror’s manual. He is described as a terrible, mighty King, who causes the love of men and women. As with many spirits in the Goetia, however, things are not always as they first appear. Beleth is probably derived from the ancient Semitic ‘Belet’ which is a feminine form of the word for ‘Lord’. Belet was a title given to several ancient Goddesses, including the Sumerian mother Goddess Ninhursag, who was called Belet-ili (Mistress of the Gods), and Astarte, a later form of the Sumerian Goddess of love and war, Inanna. So, while Beleth’s formidable reputation might be well-deserved, she should be respected as one of the world’s most ancient and revered Goddesses. Use the talisman of Beleth to bring this ancient and fearsome feminine power into your life.

Astrology Photo

This month in Astrology...

The Sun’s journey through watery Cancer (6/20-7/22) highlights the emotional mysteries of these mortal adventures we’re on. Our ever-changing Moon is the ruler of Cancer, who asks us to honor and nurture our emotional needs, family ties, and complex internal rhythms.

July begins on a bit of an uncomfortable note with some deep lessons that are relevant all month long. Mercury and Mars are aligned in Cancer in a fussy opposition with that power-hungry ruler of the underworld, Pluto in Capricorn. This opposition is inspiring crackpot needs for control and insecure programs of manipulation all over the place. What unmet needs are you overly focused on? What dramatic and demanding parts of you (and your loved ones) need more compassion and forgiveness?

The drama-infused Full Moon in Capricorn on the 8th lines up with shadow-facing Pluto in Capricorn and Mars in Cancer. This Full Moon brings a culmination to (and potentially big breakthroughs regarding) the energies that started the month. Decisions about balancing needs and energy demands at home and in the workplace are loaded. Check your ego at the door, nurture the “family” lineages you’re part of, and thank and release the major successes and failures of the last two years (see more below).

For most of the month, talkative Mercury is in outgoing Leo, and empathetic Venus is in communicative Gemini. Whatever drama arises (and wow is it ever a dramatic month with this extended Sun-Mars conjunction), these two planets of connection in outgoing signs can help us to have a lot of fun with it all, provided we reach out and get engaged.

The Sun enters courageous, fiery Leo on the 22nd, and the New Moon on the 23rd aligns with Mars, beginning a new round of the two-year Sun-Mars cycle. Don your “fake it ‘til you make it” armor, and get moving on whatever daring creative/playful/entrepreneurial/social ventures you’ve been procrastinating on for too long. Big magic is available with this Moon, so plant some good seeds of creative intention on the morning of the 23rd.

Blessings,
Saleem

For more info about Saleem and Astrology, contact him at www.innatewholenessastrology.com.

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