I’m not ashamed to admit it. While the majority of the magical work I do is for the benefit my family, I tend to think of them as being mostly outside the magical loop.
But I’ve been thinking about this lately.
Earlier in the week, a friend and I stepped out onto the cool night grass, spun the Full Moon into a bowl of water, and bathed in it. It was glorious.
(By the way, for those of you who are drawn to witchcraft, but feel you don’t have enough time for it, Spinning the Moon is a good one for you. It has minimal set up, and could — however damply — be well done with all your clothes on in the space of a few minutes.)
I saved some of the water in my bowl, and later anointed my family members with it — my moist hand on their cheek during a kiss.
(Well … I guess my family are in the loop a bit.)
Do I make specific mention of these monthly anointings to them? No. And I don’t see that omission as any sort of betrayal. My role within our family is to do those things I believe will promote our health and well-being. I don’t ask their permission before serving up mounds of vegetables; nor do I feel any need to tell them when they’re bathing in the moon. It’s all part of the package.
Outside of my immediate family, I’d feel differently. Those relationships have different rights, privileges and duties, which might not include acting unilaterally in their best interest. But I digress …
Later this week, family will be coming for a Halloween party. Not coven family (we’ll be having a different sort of party later). It will be my siblings, nieces and nephews. We’ll play games, eat food, drink really good beer and coffee, and talk until the Eyes of Night Herself start blinking.
We’ll have pictures of our Beloved Dead out, with plates alongside their pictures, so they can share in the feast. They’ll be toasted and remembered. It’s not something we’ve specifically discussed as being Craft-related. I suppose my family just assumes it’s close to All Saints’ Day, and how lovely to do it while we’re all together to share reminiscences.
(Ok. Perhaps my family is “in the loop” a bit more than I thought.)
For dessert, we have a cake, thickly iced and done up with ribboned charms. The custom of charm cakes is an old one — think Kings Cake or the cake pulls of Southern weddings. I remember reading somewhere that finding your fortune by charms in a cake at All Hallows was also a Victorian tradition, but couldn’t find a reference for that on the fly …
Our cake differs from others, in that there are more charms that folks present, and the charms that aren’t pulled are cast into a body of water. Because when you make one choice you are, of necessity, giving up others.
(Alright. I’ll admit it. My family is so far into the loop, they might well be wearing the it like a bow.)
I must have become inured to just how much crossover there it between my lone work, my coven work and my surprisingly craft-saturated family culture.
I guess that’s why they call it the “Cunning Arts.” You rarely see it coming for you!