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Healing Rheumatoid Arthritis With Cannabis

Healing Rheumatoid Arthritis With Cannabis

I really shouldn’t read articles about Rheumatoid Arthritis anymore and I absolutely should NOT read any comments that might be posted. Even when my RA was severe, I could only handle so much time on forums because it was too depressing. Rheumatoid Arthritis sucks. When it took over and became severe, which it remained for thirteen years, my entire life changed. The fatigue alone was like nothing I had ever experienced, more along the lines of mononucleosis than feeling over-worked or having gone without sleep for too long. It was like all the energy I had to even breathe was compromised or missing. I immediately had begun retaining fluid at an alarming rate and my normally frail appearance was replaced by someone I didn’t recognize and since I wasn’t on steroids, this was the disease itself doing this. I felt as if I was sloshing about in boiling hot water. It was horrible. And none of my doctors did a damn thing to deal with that.

I’ve had six rheumatologists over the years with most eventually moving to other areas leaving me wondering what fresh hell I would go through upon meeting a new doctor. My current rheumy never saw me when I was so ill, having come on board after I achieved clinical remission. I’m sure it’s frustrating when there’s not much she can do for me now, but it is what it is.

When I read articles discussing the different issues we experience and then the solutions they offer, I want to scream. But when I read the comments RA sufferers leave, I want to scream and cry. I understand extreme pain because I experienced it 24/7 for all those years. It’s a pain so all-consuming that you enter a new normal that few can relate to. Until joint damage becomes visible, we don’t necessarily look sick. We might walk more slowly and we might forget what we’re saying in the middle of a sentence or where our car is parked or be unable to dress ourselves or walk without help, but it’s all good because most people have all sorts of suggestions for us that if we’d only just try what they suggest our lives would be oh so much better. Right. And then here I come telling people that cannabis can change everything.

After thirteen years with severe rheumatoid arthritis, I became a cannabis patient in 2010 and by the middle of March 2011, I was in clinical remission, something the drugs I was prescribed could never achieve. I never told my rheumy at the time why I was well because he wasn’t interested in signing off on my cannabis card application. If he had ever confronted me about why I suddenly got well, I would have told him. But he never did that and moved away before we legalized recreationally here in Oregon. After that happened, I felt comfortable telling my current rheumy about how I healed. It made no difference, however, because we don’t discuss it, only when am I going to go back on biologics. I’m not. Or how much pain and stiffness do I have upon rising and for how long. None and none unless I overdid it in the garden the day before. I turn sixty in October. I walk four miles per day, sometimes more. I got well. By myself. I fail to see why that’s a problem or why folks just can’t be happy for me.

I want so badly to tell everyone who responds to these articles that they can step off the chronic illness train and take command of their healing. But I know that not everyone has access to the amount of cannabis necessary with which to saturate their bodies in order that they heal. It’s the approach I took, but then I grow my own. I was unable to grow for myself initially so my husband took care of everything until I could finally help with the garden. I processed the cannabis into medicine, but even with that, he would pitch in when my hands gave out or the fatigue was too much. In addition to the plants I have for processed medicine, I keep a few smaller plants to pull leaves from to include in fruit smoothies. Raw cannabis leaf or bud still contains healing plant acids that dissipate when the plant is dried or processed. It also has the advantage of medicating without the psychoactive effect that smoking or ingestion of processed cannabis creates. So it’s a great way to medicate with cannabis during the daytime and I still use it in my daily smoothies.

I also know what it’s like to worry about everything when we’re ill with this awful disease. Could I do all of my grocery shopping or would my husband have to park me in the produce department while he ran around the store getting everything we needed? Or could I even get out of the car and walk into the store at all? Doctors tell us that they understand this disease only so far. I’m not suggesting that these folks aren’t caring or compassionate or good at their jobs, but that there’s an option that many aren’t in a legal position to embrace given the federal issues they and their DEA license could possibly face, particularly with the current Attorney General. And potential cannabis patients face the same concerns when the state in which they live keeps cannabis in all forms illegal. So as much as I would like to flood the comments section for articles on rheumatoid arthritis with how I healed or a link to my first book, Confessions of a Back Porch Herbalist, I don’t. Instead, I head over to the blog and work out my frustrations here.

Before I became a cannabis patient, I had been reading Bruce Lipton’s The Biology of Belief. One day I decided I was fed up with this bullshit disease and I told my body that this had to stop. I began speaking to my cells and telling them that playtime was over and it was time to get on with it. I was done with chronic illness, and I meant it. It was then that I ordered my medical records and sent them to the cannabis clinic in Portland. I received an appointment after they reviewed my records and we drove to Portland on the day of my appointment. I met with a nurse and then the doctor and we chatted about my RA and how cannabis could help me heal. With my signed paperwork in hand, I mailed everything to the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program office and waited a little over a month for my card to arrive. It took a little over a month and then it arrived. And in the time it takes to have a baby, I was in clinical remission. We grew over the summer and after harvest, I had enough to begin making medicine and at the end of December 2010, I was ready to create a medicating program for myself. By the middle of March 2011, I was in clinical remission. I had begun gradually discontinuing my prescribed medications remaining on the biologic until September 2015 when I injected my last dose on September 13.  I’ve had no return of symptoms in almost two years and I continue to support my recovery with cannabis medicines along with herbal tinctures and teas I formulate to keep my immune system functioning normally.

It’s hard to deal with RA even when we have support from the medical community. Because as nice as they all are, all that seems to happen is that we stay in one place. We might fluctuate back and forth and have better days now and then, but we seem to stabilize somewhere and it’s never in the direction of remission. I’ve read about some folks for whom RA is either acute and then over or never seems to dominate their lives, but for many of us, it’s a forever thing. I just decided to reject that premise and try something different. And it worked. And even though not everyone can take that same approach, in time laws and beliefs may change so I’m going to say it anyway:

Cannabis can heal chronic illness. Life can be lived either without or with fewer limitations. After thirteen years of pure hell, I can barely remember what I went through now, probably because I don’t want to, but still, it speaks to a recovery that I didn’t plan on. I thought I would be ill for the rest of my life and I couldn’t have imagined I would feel as I do now. And cannabis did that. A plant that never should have been made illegal has brought healing and a sense of peace that I thought was gone forever.

So, let go of what you think you know about this plant. It just might save your life.


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Healing With Cannabis Is Worth The Risk

Healing With Cannabis Is Worth The Risk

It felt as if my body wasn’t my own. I had retained so much fluid that it felt as if I was sloshing about in boiling hot water. My thirteen-year nightmare with rheumatoid arthritis was surreal. It exploded into my life preventing any further training in Kenpo. Although my husband and I had closed our school, as a Black Belt I still trained daily, but that was over when the debilitating fatigue and pain began. I still had no idea what was happening to me but it was clear that something was terribly wrong.

I began to walk slowly, experiencing excruciating pain in my feet. I had always been a high energy person so this was concerning. By the time I saw my primary care doctor, my hands were also painfully swollen but his response was less than supportive. I would discover much later that I was experiencing all of the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis, but on that day, my doctor diagnosed nothing. By his estimation I was fine.

Eventually, I would be diagnosed with RA and prescribed drugs that only made my body even more toxic. Disease modifiers, anti-inflammatory drugs along with two different injectable biologics were my primary medications until I became insulin resistant and needed another prescription for that. I was on blood pressure medicine but it wasn’t enough to keep my blood pressure in check given how much fluid I was retaining. It wasn’t until my blood pressure skyrocketed after seven or so years after beginning treatment that a second medication was added, this one containing a diuretic. Along with my blood pressure normalizing, the diuretic caused so much fluid loss in the first two weeks that I woke up one morning engulfed in a flare that would go on to last slightly longer than one year. My C-Reactive Protein test was 46.5; normal, I was told, is 5 or less. The medications weren’t helping me. I was a mess and only getting worse.

My husband had been encouraging me to become a cannabis patient throughout my treatment. He had been researching the success others had using cannabis to treat all sorts of conditions and begged me to apply for my OMMP card. I resisted for some time but when the year-long flare began, I was so ill at that point that I really didn’t believe I would survive, so I decided to throw caution to the wind and apply for my card, receiving it in June 2010.

While my cannabis grew I used raw leaf in my daily smoothies. From my research, I learned that raw cannabis contains plant acids that transform into other compounds through the drying process. Plant acids are healing and patients were reporting success including raw leaf and bud in their self-treatment so I did that as well. When my harvest was done I began making concentrated medicine. I infused dried bud into coconut oil for capsules and made glycerin tincture to use in tea. At the end of December 2010 I began my own treatment plan using raw cannabis, tincture, capsules, as well as smoking for pain relief and by the middle of March of 2011, I had achieved clinical remission. Just like that.

I never told my rheumatologist at the time what I was doing. He wasn’t interested in signing off on the application so I decided it was none of his business. I began slowly discontinuing the medications I had been prescribed, waiting for symptoms to return. They didn’t. The last prescribed medication I discontinued was the biologic I was injecting twice monthly. I had reduced that to once a month with no return of symptoms. Since I’m also a herbalist, I was supporting my remission with herbal tinctures I formulated, so I felt comfortable discontinuing the biologic in September 2015. To date, I’ve had no return of symptoms and the only change I’ve made with my cannabis medicine along the way was adding actual cannabis oil to the mix. That’s the thick, sludgy oil that’s so helpful with cancer, Crohn’s and other issues. I use a small amount now to keep things in check.

I was expected to buy into their program and not think for myself. But if I had continued along that path, I believe I wouldn’t be writing this now. And now we have a president and an attorney general who seem to want to put my life and the lives of other patients at risk again by suggesting that cannabis is dangerous. The new attorney general apparently believes that it’s almost as bad as heroin addiction which is ludicrous.

The entire west coast has legalized recreational cannabis and over half the states have legalized medical. The tax revenue alone has opened the floodgates to legalization across the country. Seniors opting to medicate with cannabis are discovering that they can reduce the number of prescriptions they’re taking, a concern of Big Pharma I’m sure. But that’s too bad considering what this new regime plans to do to everyone’s healthcare. We must have options when they seek to give us none.

I know first hand how well cannabis replaces any number of prescribed medications. If the destructive health insurance changes the Republicans are insisting upon are voted into law, seniors will have even greater difficulty purchasing their medications. If cannabis can replace those medications then they need safe access to that without fear of arrest.

Veterans, my husband included, need safe access as well to help relieve the crippling effects of PTSD from which so many suffer. Because if the Republicans have their way and privatize veteran’s health care, safe access to cannabis will become more important than ever. These men and women served us honorably and with dignity. Their return home should reflect the same commitment and respect they gave our country. The last thing any of them needs is to face uncertainty over their healthcare concerns.

To say the government lied about the safety of cannabis is an understatement. Lives have been ruined through incarceration and for what exactly? To preserve a lie told long ago? How many people would be alive and well today if they had cannabis as a treatment option? Ideally, raw cannabis should be considered as a dietary staple, available for purchase in any produce department. I’m convinced that had my mother had access to cannabis oil, she might still be alive instead of dying at sixty-five from COPD and congestive heart failure. Children who have survived cancer using cannabis oil go on to live healthy lives. A boy in Colorado with Crohn’s has become a vocal advocate for healing with cannabis and is living a happy and healthy life. Families move across the country to live in states with medical cannabis when it’s the only thing that will save their child.

Cannabis is safe to use medicinally or for recreation. Research from around the world supports this truth. CNN did a three-part investigative series where Sanjay Gupta discovered the truth about the efficacy of cannabis in treating so many conditions. But Congress, the DEA, and the new attorney general have other ideas. Truth matters not to these people, but the stakes are too high to give up now. Too many of us have had our lives saved by this blessed plant and we’re not going away anytime soon. We’ll stand up to the nonsense because as we all know, healing with cannabis is definitely worth the risk.

So give it your best shot, Mr. Sessions. A veritable cannabis army awaits, many of us silver-haired and not done living yet.

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Replacing Conflict With Love ~ Tarot for 27 Jan 2017

Replacing Conflict With Love

More patterns emerge in today’s tarot reading. Swords, extending rays, and the shape of a caduceus appear in today’s three card spread. The Ace of Swords, King of Swords. and the 2 of Cups bring influences affecting our intellect and emotions. The numerology of the reading is three, or mastery and Air and Water are the elemental influences.

I really like the Robin Wood tarot. The Ace of Swords depicts an upward pointing sword. Two garlands encircle the sword in the shape of a caduceus connected at the top like DNA. White roses adorn the garland on the right, the sun’s rays breaking through the white clouds and reflecting in all directions off of the sword.

Darker clouds surround the King of Swords, the wind blowing his cape and the grass below his feet, his authority evident by his stance and attire. His arms are crossed as he holds his sword in his right hand aligning with its sheath hanging on his left side. Two birds fly in the distance, above the clouds with another just over his right shoulder. His tunic depicts the sky with clouds at the bottom with stars adorning the inside of his cape. The King commands respect and allegiance, his helmet reflecting his status.

The 2 of Cups evokes such peace and harmony. As with the Ace of Swords, we again see rays of light, this time reflecting the transformation brought by union. As the couple exchange cups, they are transformed by their commitment, their energy producing a rainbow as well as a caduceus rising from their balanced union. Their fine robes reflect their status in life. The man’s robes are red and gold symbolizing passion and will and he wears a wreath of red roses on his head. Lions appear on the sleeve and front of his robe suggesting strength and courage.

The woman’s robes are blue and silver, with fish and green leaves on her dress with more leaves on her robe. Both robes are trimmed in fur, brown for the man’s robe reflecting nature and the physical plane and white for the woman’s robe depicting purity. A caduceus appears on her upper sleeve indicating a healer of some kind.

The hills behind the King of Swords become more verdant on the 2 of Cups suggesting love and harmony have a positive effect on everything around us. New ideas are springing forth, perhaps aggression and battle aren’t the only answer. Through positive communication and commitment to higher ideals, we can arrive at solutions that benefit all. We can come together in partnership and unity to heal any division that exists.

Even the King can learn a new approach to life. He holds the sword pointed upward toward Spirit, standing back in reflection, allowing clarity to return. His blue tunic suggests that he’s gained some emotional clarity and balance, understanding that his actions have an effect in the world and should be tempered with wisdom and grace. The appearance of the caduceus on either side of the King is significant, with its appearance on the woman’s sleeve reinforcing healing.

Whether aligning our inner polarity or coming together in partnership with others, that alignment results in reconciliation and healing for all parties as we let go of conflict and aggression, replacing it with harmony and love.

So much better that than a wall that divides us..

Blessings to all!

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Awakening the I Am ~ Tarot for 3 Jan 2017

Awakening the I Am

The 2 of Cups has been coming up more frequently in recent divinations. The Sun and the 3 of Cups join in to set a catalyzed emotional tone of love and joy to the reading. The numerology is 2, 3, and 19 resulting in 6 or Higher Self, harmony, love, and the I Am layer of Self.

Gate 1 Looking again at the 2 of Cups, we see an peacock looking down adoringly at the spark of love coming from the two chalices below her. Seven stars arise form each cup, the magick of love in harmonious balance. The 1st hexagram of the I Ching represents Qian or The Creative as our genesis or primal essence.

Qian expounds the nature of Nature, the principle of Creation. Qian, the Initiating, is the most sublime, the most firm, the most central, and the most upright. It possesses the attributes of initiation, prosperity, harmony, and steadfastness. It moves forward endlessly and inexhaustibly. It is an ideal model of human conduct.¹

Although it can also be applied to relationships, the 2 of Cups really represents the creative aspect of Self in harmony as we balance the sacred feminine and masculine energies within. Contrast that with the 3 of Cups, which depicts three overflowing chalices in what appears to be a cave representing our inner emotional presence. The 28th hexagram, Da Guo or Great Exceeding present on the card suggests that power is transitory in nature with our intuition guiding any potential response. In other words, sometimes we place too much importance on the transitory or temporary nature of life.

Gate 28 3 of cupsGreat exceeding suggests a situation that is out of balance. It denotes an extraordinary situation requiring extraordinary action. Confucius’s Commentary on the Symbol says, “The superior person stands alone without fear and withdraws from the world with no depression.” This is the proper attitude for taking extraordinary action in an extraordinary situation. Because the situation is unusual, not everyone is able to take such action; one should stand alone without fear. If one fails, one is able to withdraw from the world without suffering. In so doing, one acts in accordance with the spirit of taking extraordinary action in an extraordinary situation.²

Things that are too big are difficult to control, and things that are too firm are easy to break: this is the defect of Great exceeding. This gua expounds the truth of adjustment between the strong and the weak, the excessive and the deficient. If one masters the principle of adjustment, no matter how difficult the situation, any problem can be solved.³

This suggests that the 3 of Cups cautions us to refrain from judgment, to stand apart in observation without our emotions clouding our perception. All may not be lost, as it were.

Now the Sun, the 19th card from the Major Arcana depicts both the Hebrew letter Resh or head and Gebo, the seventh rune of the Elder Futhark indicating balanced energy exchange. As significator for Spirit, the Sun indicates expansion and awakening. The light of clarity has returned promising material gain, happiness, freedom, and contentment. A new day is dawning across the land, a single rose stands in the foreground suggesting our direction is toward unity and love.

Ideally, irrespective of the drama that may be coming, the I Am layer of Self should remain unaffected by it all, instead observing and then acting when appropriate. We stay away from emotional reaction to the situation as it unfolds, allowing our emotions to take a back seat to our alignment in Source Presence. Each of us gives everything we see and experience the meaning it has.

The situation at hand is giving everyone the chance to choose. Will that choice reflect the awakened choice of unity and service to others, or the more problematic choice that service to self has given us? The reading seems to suggest that awakening to Higher Self is the way to proceed if humanity is to succeed as One. Because no amount of divisiveness will ever destroy that truth, that humanity is one Creative Presence.

Remember and awaken to the I Am.

Blessed Be



  1. Huang, Taoist Master Alfred. The Complete I Ching — 10th Anniversary Edition: The Definitive Translation by Taoist Master Alfred Huang (Kindle Locations 776-778). Inner Traditions/Bear & Company. Kindle Edition.
  2. Huang, Taoist Master Alfred. The Complete I Ching — 10th Anniversary Edition: The Definitive Translation by Taoist Master Alfred Huang (Kindle Locations 4526-4530). Inner Traditions/Bear & Company. Kindle Edition
  3. Huang, Taoist Master Alfred. The Complete I Ching — 10th Anniversary Edition: The Definitive Translation by Taoist Master Alfred Huang (Kindle Locations 4531-4533). Inner Traditions/Bear & Company. Kindle Edition.
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New Book! Empath


I confess that I have difficulty advertising what I do. It feels like bragging somehow and I really have to step outside my comfort zone to do any of it. But it’s part of the process I guess. My blog has been active for four years and over that time I’ve worked on several books at the same time. The first one I published was Confessions of a Back Porch Herbalist describing my healing from severe rheumatoid arthritis with cannabis and herbs. I felt compelled to finish that one first in the event it might be of use to other cannabis patients.

The second book was a grimoire of sorts for the witch/empath who wishes a solitary path. Grimoire of a Crone essentially explains how I experience life as a witch along with some correspondences and a materia medica thrown in.

In my third book, Magick and the Aligned Witch, I discussed how alignment in Source Presence affects the witch and her power as well as her magickal workings. I included examples of rune magick as well as spells written in Latin because it’s incredibly cool. I really liked writing all three books, the second two extensions of each other.

As personal as the first three books were, Empath gives others a look at how I and others like me experience the world and how we can use our awareness for healing. I felt compelled to write about this because although this awareness can be confusing and overwhelming, it doesn’t have to be. Empaths and others like them can learn how to not only understand what they experience but how to remain safe and protected from intrusive vibrations.

An empath doesn’t simply see others, we experience them. We experience their energy, moods, thoughts, body language, words, tone, their eye contact or lack thereof. You name it, an empath may experience it including symptoms of physical illness. And until empaths learn to discern what is and isn’t their own experience, they may feel as if their emotions are all over the place.¹

With our awareness many empaths are attracted to healing of all kinds. In the book I discuss various healing methods as well as shielding and meditation techniques. Relationships can be challenging and I talk about that as well as parenting issues. And throughout the book I hope I conveyed the most important truth of all:

We’re not broken, but awakened. There is nothing wrong with us because we know what we know. And if this book does anything, it will awaken not just the empath, but everyone else to that truth.²

So thanks in advance for checking out the new book. It even has an index.


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Spell for Healing and Unity

healing and unity

With tonight’s Full Cold Moon also a Super Moon, I wrote a short spell for healing and unity. I posted yesterday the drawing of the bindrune I’ll use for it, and today I created the actual bindrune for this evening’s ritual. Full Moons are the time for setting our intentions for the coming month, or longer if appropriate, for healing, and empowerment.

For the altar, I decided to use not only white candles but an assortment of smaller pastel colored candles to symbolize loving unity. Various quartz crystals are placed around as well as a selenite tower, wand, and sphere. A cauldron is burning and the bindrune is placed there for blessing and consecrating after which it will be used in the healing and unity spell.

healing and unityBindrunes are great to use for magickal workings because they blend archetypal energies together for a particular intention. This bindrune brings together the energies of Hagalaz, Jera, Wunjo, and Uruz to manifest healing and unity. Many have been torn apart from recent events by dark forces who care only about furthering their own agenda. But this lower vibration, this lower energy, that seems to want to control at the expense of all decency, can be transmuted by a collective resonance of love and unity. We have always been stronger together and it’s where our healing lies.

Ritual oils for full moon and healing can be used to dress the candles, or any other oil that resonates. I’ll be burning frankincense on charcoal in the cauldron, but any kind of incense can be used whether in a cauldron or not.

Begin your ritual as you like. I open mine by casting a circle, blessing the Norns, and then invoking the Pentagrams of Protection. You can refer to the protection spell I posted here for those rituals. And when you’re fully aligned in Source Presence, cover your bindrune with your projective hand and chant:

  • I bind these runes
  • Blending energies within
  • Bringing balance without
  • Infused with immanence
  • I bless and consecrate this sigil
  • In alignment with Source

Pass the bindrune through the smoke from the incense three times, repeating the chant again. Repeat it one last time while passing the bindrune over the candle flame three times.

Continue now with the spell by holding the bindrune in your receptive hand, your projective hand covering it. While still holding the bindrune, raise your hands to Goddess and chant three times:

  • Sanitas partum  (create healing)
  • Creare unum  (create unity)
  • Ligare nos  (bind us together)

Finish by chanting:

  • Veritas revelat  (reveal truth)
  • Desiderium patefactum  (my desire manifested)
  • Salva veritate  (with truth preserved)

At this point I typically have some other ritual work I do including drawing down the moon. But you can end your Full Moon Ritual as you like. I’m a solitary hedge witch, so my own tradition is ever-evolving. Others are part of covens who have their own lovely traditions and spellcraft that are filled with such meaning. And if you’re not exactly of the witchy persuasion and you’re joining in with this spell for unity and healing, I extend many, many blessings to you. You can end the ritual as you like or by stilling your presence.

Of course it’s lovely when you can perform the entire esbat ritual outside under the Full Moon, but as it’s going to be in the ‘teens tonight at this witch’s house, I’ll be doing most of the ritual indoors. However I will walk outside to perform the spell under the Full Moon, whether she’s visible or not. Snow is in the forecast for tomorrow, so some Goddess Moonlight shining down will be so nice.

The dark forces that surround us will never have their desired effect as long as we collectively raise our vibration to one of love and unity. It’s through that presence that healing takes place. And through our healing the light of truth will resonate forth.

Blessings to all!

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Healing and Unity ~ A Runecasting for 12 Dec 2016

Healing and Unity cover

I performed a protection spell on the most recent Dark Moon using a bindrune I had created. Tomorrow the Full Cold Moon arrives and I thought I would perform a spell for healing and unity. I plan to use another bindrune, this one created from today’s runecasting. I aligned in Source Presence and asked what we need to bring the most change and I then drew Hagalaz, Jera, Wunjo, and Uruz, representing energetic influences of Elemental Water and Earth.

With Elemental Water, our feelings and emotional presence have influence, with energy that flows into change. Elemental Earth, gives us the more practical side of our nature, focusing on boundaries and material issues. The numerology of the runecasting is 2, 8, 9, and 12, which reduces to 4 or Gaia energy. I can also add the first three reducing them to 10, and then add 12, resulting in 22, considered the Master Builder, manifesting our dreams into reality. Clearly with the right foundation or structure, we can manifest anything we choose.

Beginning with Hagalaz, we have a structural rune, positive and protective in nature, providing the framework for change to occur. As the cosmic ice egg, Hagalaz transforms life anew. Jera adds its own transformative influence to promote positive change. It also brings alignment to relationships. Wunjo follows that direction and offers a sense of happily ever after to the runecasting. Harmony, joy, and fellowship with others is the primary influence of Wunjo.

Well, it’s easy to see where this is going. Evidently the runes would like us to live in peace and harmony. And after all that we’ve been through lately, coming together in love and unity might just transcend anything the dark forces want to accomplish, transmuting hate into love.

Uruz, the final rune in the runecasting, asks what will we manifest. A Water Element rune, Uruz promotes sudden and swift change. Our will is strong as we manifest our intention to the collective consciousness. And in this case, we’re manifesting love and unity with all.

Protection from dark forces flows into healing and love. We can never allow dark energy to overshadow the light of Source Presence. Let’s come together on tomorrow’s Full Cold Moon, and send our intention for healing and unity to the collective consciousness. We are one family, that truth providing all the foundation we need.

Blessed Be

Healing and Unity

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In Healing Retreat and Reflection ~ Tarot for 8 Dec 2016

In Healing Retreat and Reflection

Snow is falling (and not just on the blog), I’ve been shopping, and now I’m ready to be stuck inside for the next week, although I hope it doesn’t come to that. I shuffled the cards of my Thoth deck and drew three cards, counting until I reached thirteen each time. Interesting that Death came first, the 13th card of the Major Arcana. Among other synchronicities, my birthday is on October 13th, and the edict issued  by King Philip to execute the Knights Templar was issued also on October 13th, 1307. Some were ancestors.

Rabbi Dr. Hillel ben David tells us that Thirteen is the number that bonds multiplicity into oneness.¹ Death itself suggests clearing away the old and embracing new opportunity. Change is upon us. Representing the Crone aspect of the Goddess, Death is about dying and becoming, rebirth and transformation. It binds multiplicity into oneness by bringing everything to a conclusion before beginning anew, the final moment of transcendence into something else. And in the Thoth deck, Lady Frieda Harris’s skeletal Grim Reaper appears to be dancing a jig, in joyful anticipation of new experiences.

The Queen of Cups is such a beautiful card from Crowley’s Thoth deck. A natural witch, Lon Milo Duquette tells us:

Her image is of extreme purity and beauty, with infinite subtlety; to see the Truth of her is hardly possible, for she reflects the nature of the observer in great perfection.²

Her reflection in the pond before her suggests she reflects or mirrors what others wish to see, standing in observance of all. She can be loving, less so if out of sorts. Cups reflect Elemental Water, therefore our emotional presence. Intuitive and empathic, the Queen of Cups looks out in dreamy observation, her true self hidden from everyone.

The 9th card of the Major Arcana completes today’s reading. The Hermit reflects Divine wisdom and discretion, retreat and withdrawal from the world. The Hermit accesses all realms of consciousness at will, reflecting aligned Source Presence. The lantern in his left hand gives the light of Divine wisdom to all, Hecate’s three headed dog, Cerberus his protection. From Duquette:

Wander alone; bearing the Light and thy Staff! And be the Light so bright that no man seeth thee! Be not moved by aught without or within: keep Silence in all ways!³

Here we have another reference to hidden. The Queen of Cups true nature remains hidden as she reflects aspects of others. And now Higher Self is counseling the Hermit to let his light of truth be so bright that is message is what’s felt. In retreat, he experiences enlightenment, the egg surrounded by a coiled snake and sperm suggesting regeneration and rebirth.

Well it appears that more Crone influence is in play today. It seems to be a running theme of late. Stepping back in reflection of all that’s going on seems to be the best choice of action. Change is happening whether we like it or not and it will be some time before we know how it will all shake out. But until then, observation along with moving around all that we can in nonresistance seems to be the right choice.

A Crone chooses her battles. She knows when to act and when to observe, when her assertions will be readily accepted, and when she’ll face resistance. And now as the snow falls, the Crone waits in observation, staying hidden until just the right time when she’ll have the greatest effect. It’s the time for strategy, not reaction.

The numerology of the reading is 13 and 9, reducing to 22, the Master Builder number. Of course I regard 13 as a Master Witch number and I rarely reduce it to four, but I could and it would reflect the energy of Gaia, our foundation and structure. 22 as the Master Builder manifests our dreams into a successful reality.

Through reflection and alignment we have the opportunity to observe events as they unfold without reacting in haste. As we heed the wise Crone’s counsel, we are mindful of the effects of our actions, choosing that which heals and unifies over that which destroys. And perhaps, like the number 13, we’ll bind our multiplicity back into oneness.

Blessed Be




  1. Rabbi Dr. Hillel ben David (Greg Killian). The Meaning of The Number Thirteen (13).
  2. DuQuette, Lon Milo. Understanding Aleister Crowley’s Thoth Tarot (p. 184). Red Wheel Weiser. Kindle Edition.
  3. DuQuette, Lon Milo. Understanding Aleister Crowley’s Thoth Tarot (p. 120). Red Wheel Weiser. Kindle Edition.
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Now Offering Distance Reiki on Stepping Aside!


I finally decided it was time to add Distance Reiki to the blog. I was drawn to energy healing after graduating from college. I had a job at a mental hospital (my BA was in Psychology) and one of the supervisory nurses offered classes on Therapeutic Touch, basically another method of offering Reiki. She found that many of the patients at the hospital, particularly when bedridden or suffering from dementia, would calm down after a session without the use of medication. As an empath, I was immediately fascinated with this treatment technique. Later on, I found Reiki which appeared similar to Therapeutic Touch. But the difference with Reiki is that Reiki can be offered either in person or at a distance. Everything is Source Energy, so distance doesn’t matter when opening a channel for healing.

Various methods of visualizing the recipient can be utilized during the distance healing session. The Reiki Master will find what he or she connects with the most and use that as a focus. Whether a prop is used or only visualization, the Reiki Master is able to open a channel to the recipient, allowing healing Reiki to be drawn through by the recipient. Essentially the Reiki Master acts as a conduit for healing Reiki energy to flow to others. I know that it works because I tend to offer Reiki to my husband when he hasn’t asked for it. He has pain from martial arts and from his work as a mechanic, and he tends to suffer in silence much of the time. So we have an agreement that I can connect any time I think he needs it. He’s remarked many times that he senses what I’m doing while it’s happening. Or he’ll say later, “did you do Reiki a little bit ago?” So Reiki can most assuredly be offered from a distance.

Retired now, my life has taken some interesting turns in the last few years, and finishing my Reiki Master training was high on my list of what was next in my life. But I wanted to be ready before extending Reiki to others. So here’s what I would like to do. Like with the Tarot readings:

  1. fill out a request for Reiki using the contact form found on the product description page. Just click on the picture and it will take you there. Or you can click on the product descriptions above my picture on the right side of any page.
  2. I’ll contact you via email to set up a day and time for Reiki.
  3. After we agree on a day and time, go ahead and add the Reiki Healing to your cart and then check out.
  4. I’ll watch for your transaction to come through Paypal and I’ll contact you before our Reiki session if something goes sideways, but Paypal is straightforward and they do a great job.
  5. Otherwise, I’ll email you again on the morning of the session as a reminder and then we’ll get together at the appointed time.

I include the use of sound therapy in my Reiki work. So I’ll use non-weighted forks as well during the distance healing session to bring balance to the recipient’s chakras as well as the outer energy field surrounding the recipient’s body. I’ve found that using both weighted and non-weighted tuning forks adds an additional dimension to the healing session, so I love using them.

So thanks in advance and Reiki Blessings!

~ Jan

Posted on

The Gaslighting of America

Mother's Day

In the last few days, we’ve been inundated with revelations of alleged sexual assault regarding our male candidate running for President. Some women in the media are referring to the denigration by that man of his accusers as gaslighting. They seem to suggest that by virtue of his denial and denigration, he’s gaslighting these women. As an abuse survivor, I’m familiar with the term, having experienced it in my life. I guess I’ve never thought about it coming from the world stage as it were. Typically these things are kept between the people involved, or maybe law enforcement or attorneys if it gets that far.

My purpose for exploring this subject is not only to enlighten others about this disgusting and manipulative practice by abusers, but to also expand my own definition now that it’s reached such a public expression.

Also called crazy-making, abusers who gaslight their victims do so as a means of control. In the case of couples, married or not, the abuser makes the partner believe that he/she is losing their mind. Say the woman goes to the table where she left her keys, only to find them missing. She knows she put them there, but they’re gone now. She asks her husband and he feigns innocence. An hour later, she discovers them on the very table she left them. She looks at her husband (who had taken them and then replaced them when she wasn’t looking) who tells her they were there all along, possibly demeaning her in the process. Because this scenario happens frequently, she doubts her sanity, which is exactly where he wants her: off balance and vulnerable.

Maybe now having to look at the ugliness of abuse every time we turn on the news will make those who would typically not believe a woman’s story think twice about that choice. Because when we’re not believed, all hope leaves us. We never feel safe again. Ever. Even when the abuse is no longer happening. But that’s the nature of abuse. It destroys us at our very core.

Listening to all the things this man says about his accusers makes me physically ill. I have to limit my exposure to ward off any abuse reactions I might have. Although I’m doing remarkably well with my own understanding of what I experienced, just like so many other women who have experienced sexual assault or abuse in their lives, I never know when an abuse reaction will occur.

When he continually re-positioned himself behind Secretary Clinton during the second debate, I kept my eyes on her the entire time. I was aware of what he was doing, but I focused on her. She kept me level. I stayed safe in my thoughts because of her own control and determination. His actions were those of an abuser, no matter what he or anyone else says. He cannot behave this way and then expect any of us to believe otherwise.

I found the list below online at Psychology Today. It describes the behavior of someone who is being gaslighted. Even though it’s from 2009 and will no doubt need updating after the election, it’s telling.


How do you know if you are being gaslighted? If any of the following warning signs ring true, you may be dancing the Gaslight Tango. Take care of yourself by taking another look at your relationship, talking to a trusted friend; and, begin to think about changing the dynamic of your relationship . Here are the signs:
1. You are constantly second-guessing yourself
2. You ask yourself, “Am I too sensitive?” a dozen times a day.
3. You often feel confused and even crazy at work.
4. You’re always apologizing to your mother, father, boyfriend, boss.
5. You can’t understand why, with so many apparently good things in your life, you aren’t happier.
6. You frequently make excuses for your partner’s behavior to friends and family.
7. You find yourself withholding information from friends and family so you don’t have to explain or make excuses.
8. You know something is terribly wrong, but you can never quite express what it is, even to yourself.
9. You start lying to avoid the put downs and reality twists.
10. You have trouble making simple decisions.
11. You have the sense that you used to be a very different person – more confident, more fun-loving, more relaxed.
12. You feel hopeless and joyless.
13. You feel as though you can’t do anything right.
14. You wonder if you are a “good enough” girlfriend/ wife/employee/ friend; daughter.
15. You find yourself withholding information from friends and family so you don’t have to explain or make excuses.¹


As anyone reading the above list can see, gaslighting someone results in self-doubt, loss of self-esteem and any of a number of issues. This level of manipulation on an ongoing basis destroys a woman’s soul. To do it publicly to these women is shameful. But then hearing the report that he walked in on teens in various stages of undress at one of his pageants should be enough for any of us.

This man simply cannot be our President. End the gaslighting of America. Please join me in voting for Hillary Clinton.



  1. Are You Being Gaslighted? by Robin Stern, Ph.D.