Saturday, April 15, 2017

Sunflower: petals of light

In Espiritismo Cordon in Cuba, they use a native american statue, besides a sunflower to represent the Indio commission. Just like a light bulb is sometimes hung over San Hilarion as a principle of guiding light to bring the spirits on their white table.

          Emblematic of the sun is the sunflower. It is also associated with the elevated Lwa Gran Solier, Soleil, Soley or Grand/Big Sun). Under Gran Solier many emmisarios work with spiritualists, the dead who were former spiritualists now help us in Sanse and Puerto-Rican Espiritismo. There are several Saint images as aspects, as each Lwa family such as the Soley's represent several spirits in the same division.  The image of the crowned Jesus is used as the "great power" related to the crucified justice, and thorns of Mars and warrior aspect, and as the justice card of the tarot runs between the sun and mars in qaballah or the tree of life.... like the energy of St George (the Oguns), and the Lwa Beli Belcan (used as St Michael) his sword is said to be off a ray of the sun or like lightening.
Note: if your flowers have thorns you must remove them before giving to the spirits or on the boveda.
One image for Gran Soley is also used on the yellow cover of Kardec's selected prayers we use: Ecce Homo "the man".

The sun's rays are cleansing, and correspond with life force, ache,and the ability to transport "souls" or spirits to manifest and to elevate. Much like the Gran Chemin or "big road" called in Haitian Vodou before Legba.

The sunflowers is used as a symbol of many European spiritualist churches since the 1890's and represents truth and constancy (loyalty, dedication, faith, enduring qualities), along with the bright color yellow since ancient times.

It symbolizes the good spirits and the progress of man:

A seed is placed in the earth, nurtured, watered from the heavens and co-ultivated at times by mankind. The sunflower faces the east when the sun rises, and then to the west with the progress of the sun during the day. As likens to the progress of souls from birth to death in the watery twilight of the west with the ancestors.

As the flower "turns" it represents the various paths, caminos, vueltas, faces, or presentations a visiting spirit can manifest such as the "ave" "gira" or dove turns of the holy spirit, ad the spiraling dance movements. In spanish the sunflower is called girasol or sun turner.

As it faces east it is as a salute to the rebirth and regeneration of incarnated souls and gives acknowledgment to the Great Spirit.
As the petals open of the flower, it represents unfolding of our spiritual gifts and growth.
Many cultures see the sun as the visible face of God. The sun is the heart and solar plexus region, as the personification of Jesus is light, truth and charity/love.
This is why the holy day was changed from Saturday (Saturn of restriction, material, and death) to Sunday.

The solar seasonal celebrations or sabbats are widely comparative: the invincible sun or sol Invictus is reborn at the winter solstice, and returns to earth in the Spring Equinox to bring new life at Easter.
For example: Greek Hellenist doctrine of the solar logos, and early Christian symbolism depicted Christ as the Spiritual Sun, illumination source of order, harmony, healing and spiritual insight, and borrowed older depictions of enlightenment and spiritual power of crowns/ coronas of halo and rays of lights. We also have the magician Solomon, as symbolized as the magi in the enter of the circle, and the astrological symbol of the center of our universe, the generative projective sun. This is the wand and the pillar in the peristyle, of power that runs through every human to be activated.




Like a man the sunflower grows stooped with age, and can grow the height of a man.
The main stalk often has 7 branches with 12 leaves, a celestial and solar number.
(As Gran Solier is our Chief of the 7 Jefe Lwa in Sanse pantheon).
And 7 being the days of the week and classical planets, 12 of the solar cycle months.
And these branches often produce 3 flowers per stalk as the number of formation, the persons spiritual frame or cuadro (spirits that make up your entourage of guides etc) and the trinity.
Each flower has 52 golden petals for the weeks of the year, breaking down again to 7 (5+2).
In the center are generally 365 seeds representing our solar calender year.
Some of their centers grow in a spiral, fractal way, which generates all creation.

Flowers are said to be an earth element, but it has roots, a channel/stalk, and aerial parts.
There is Odu that some explain as that flowers are to the dead and not the Orisha.
However the sunflower is said to represent several spirits including Oshun and Cachita Tumbo.
The petals of the flowers on the boveda are used in spiritual baths as it is gentle and replenishing to our aura or spiritual fluids/energy body. The petals are like a cats whiskers and increase our sensitivity to spiritual transmissions. Some call our spiritual gifts "lights".
Usually white flowers are placed for the dead, or yellow flowers are used for light, but different colors have symbolism.
A multi-color bouquet is used for all your dead.
Carnations are used for strength and are affordable and popular for this reason.

"Scattering petals in an instant" Is a translation of one of the songs or prayers for evocation.It explains the love/charity or mercy the spirit is showing by guiding us or coming down to do work for us. Flowers are associated with love, friendship and reunion, as thrown in weddings and the Indian Holi festival as brotherhood and offerings. Flowers and sweet smells are attractive to the spirits. In the resurgance era of european spiritualism, spirits were reported to actually manifest flowers or rain down petals onto the seance table.
                                                  from blog natividad del mar

A crown of flowers, and its petals are therefore very important in the Espiritismo tradition during crowning and baptism.

In another canto or song for the misa, The song for Christo says "regando flores" or roughly watering flowers: showering down or raining flowers.
In a song for the gypsy it says as translated "give me a flower with a goodbye".


                                                      Sancista 7 Crossroads







Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Charity

Charity
Charity is one of the highest principles held in Espiritismo of hope, faith and charity.
They are given prose in Allan Kardec's book of selected prayers and have interaction. They are both masonic and christian principles. They are symbolized by the heart, anchor and cross, as well as the 3 marias ( tres marias) or graces/muses as virtues.

This symbol put together, some use as a symbol of Sanse. The cross is of a man and the world tree, the earth and sun or faith. The heart is central of the sun or solar plexus and heart and light. The anchor is of hope,what keeps us grounded, and has the lunar and watery symbol. As in the tarot card the star, these are guiding principles linked to destiny. The hebrew letter to the star tarot card is translated as"hook", because man or souls are viewed as fishes. Such as in the bible the disciple and fisherman Peter/Simon became the fisher of man and the rock or foundation of the church as the first pope. The spiritual forces always seek towards man just as much as we look for guidance and light. As a seafaring people, they would navigate by the light of the sun and the north pole star. They even had an early navigational device known as the cross staff.

Charity means love of your fellow man like philanthropy, but many people think of it as donation to institutions, and charitable work,
Is there a higher tenet than love?
It is said that God is love.
Charity is also action, of charitable words, not speaking bad of others in gossip and undeservedly.
Of loving and helping each other.


Caridad de Cobre, the Lady of Charity
Many people think that Oshun, syncretized with the saint image of Lady of Charity or the yellow Caridad de Cobre is charity, but this is not so. Oshun is known for love, happiness, sensuality, riches, and luxury as well as foresight.The Saint of Charity is the patron of Cuba, and some use the blue one also or both colors, but that means something different in our lineage. The yellow one can also be used for the Lwa Cachita Tumbo but some use an Indian woman, whereas the blue can be used for La Sirene or Yemaya, but they also use the saint image La Diosa del Mar (goddess of the sea). We understand the saint is not the Mysterio Orisha or Lwa. One of the paths of Oshun is a chieftess, more of a native Caribbean woman. Cachita Tumbo is like Oshun as a river spirit, but many also mistake her for the female Lwa Anaisa Pye, whose name means little yellow or golden flower. She also has a path of a native woman.

The tale of how this saint came to be is very interesting. The men in the boat represent the three races which mixed and became Cuban: European, African and Indian or mixed ethnicity. The men were out harvesting salt, and were caught in a storm off the Caribbean island. Fearing for their lives they began to pray. Then the little statue on a board with the epitaph "Lady of Charity" washed towards them, and they brought it ashore. Thus Charity became linked with Faith, and is a deeper theme explored in the Prayer of the Shipwrecked. And also the Prayer of the lighthouse as the guiding light to both incarnated and disincarnated souls, The lighthouse is a metaphor for our centinela or main spirit guide, to guide us, and usher in other spirits.

In Chief Miguel Sague's book Canoa or "canoe" he tells of a slightly different version of lore, with more of the native or Taino history. Whether or not this is myth, of visions, or dreams in the telling, the cultural meaning comes through clearly. The statue is a replacement to safely hide the spirits of the land before colonization; of an earth and river creatrix: Atabey and Atabeira. Like the Taino Cemi spirits in stone, this statue mysteriously moves places, and reappears eventually back at the little chapel on top of a copper mine. Cobre in spanish means copper, and as many people lost their lives in the mine, she was looking out for them and guiding them with her light.

Saint Sophia or wisdom is told as their mother, Sophia is "Gods wife" as Wisdom herself the Ama or Asherah. From which we get the word philosophy, or the love of knowledge and study. Some see her as a Magdelene, rumored wife to Jesus. Gnostics hold Sophia as the creator of the world and is a saturnine principle of the number 3 and like Granne Erzulie or Santa Anna mother of Mary and used for the Lwa Anaisa Pye. Each of the Mary's also can be linked to the Lwa of the Erzulie family whose emblem is the heart; as Mary Salome, Mary Jacobe and Mary Magdelene as Ezili Dayila. Salome and Jacobe are also linked to the gypsy commision of guides through Santa Sara and the dance of the 7 veils by Salome in the bible. This also hearkens to Venusian deities whose number is 7 and of love, sexuality and nature, of temple proxies of Aphrodite and Ishtar. The metal of Venus is copper, and she holds the lights of the 7 planets.....as well as the sun/son in the constellation Virgo the Virgin harvest Queen pictured as holding a shaft of wheat or babe.
These are saint images which preserved original peoples knowledge.



Who is Charity?
So who is charity actually?
It is a very celestial divine spirit or power, very close to God.
This principle or force is personified, but so elevated they never come into physical mediumship.
The light of love or mercy guides spirits towards us to "hacer caridad" do charity or intervene in our human problems and suffering. These words are found often in evoking guides and the dead of a spirit court " to come to the earth and do charity". For example a song to a congo translates as "congo, little congo, congo of truth, I call you to the earth to make charity".

Also to the Lwa "gracias misercordia" means thank you for the mercy. Because they show us help and a kindness, we need to have gratitude, and to give charity to receive the blessings of the spirits.

Many higher spirits such as saints, like you to give to a charity in gratitude as an offering of thanks. For example if St Jude helped you, a donation to St Jude's Children's hospital is common. Also in first world nations, we are somewhat removed from the conditions in the very countries and areas that our traditions may come from that we enter such as Haiti, Cuba and Africa and their people.
If we take or receive than we must give back. We are one, one love.

Charity in Espiritismo
Clarity is synonymous with Light in this tradition, the ability to see truth and clairvoyance. When we think of light we think of the color white or yellow. Light "helps" spirits to see or "gives" lights the way. One misa canto or song lyrics are as translated "a great clarity.... the cloak of Mama Charity.....you light" to guide the dead towards us,
and then goes into singing of the dancing of Cachita, dance dance Cachita la Caridad.

In the name of charity, most centros of Espiritsmo try to have public misa once a month. By charity it is not actually "free" as attendees are expected to bring needed materials such as food, flowers, novena candles, cigar, rum, a small donation if possible to do the work. The energy, work, and time expended by the mediums are donated, along with any additional materials. Private misa are of charge.

Some budding espiritist said, " I don't get anything out of it" by doing the monthly charity. HA! delayed gratification. Get it right, its not about spells and commanding the dead to do your bidding.You cannot do Espiritismo without Charity. True, alot of energy is expended and it is not appreciated by other people at times the effort required. It may take several days to recover, even by the participants at times.

We are doing a service to the community. As priests we are to serve, not always be self serving. On the other hand some people do not want to exchange and only take. This upsets the order and balance of things, it is not good to put oneself at a debt. Euro mediums are more mentalists in modern times it seems, and say it is not to charge for their gifts, because they are God given and do not want to misuse it. And when money is involved this is a possibility.
This is true of being God given, however we use more materials in our folk spiritism. Physical mediumship is very draining, especially in the beginning, or you have not been brought up this way to exercise and expand the energy body over time.

What people do not purchase, they often take for granted, or in increase not listen. However our spirits will tell us when to do charity as far as spiritual work, or take on a couple of cases per month. Charity starts at home in the community, and also cannot be expected over the internet. In the old days, and still to this day to some extent barter is accepted, in the form of food, livestock, rum, cigars etc.

The charity given is also to the spirits, in our offerings and in our elevation work of light and progress in our sessions. Also to the elevation work and crossing over or rescue mediumship of earthbound or purgatorial spirits. Noted is the concept of water in African traditions, of the ocean of the dead, the congo kalunga. The cemetary is known as the small sea or little kalunga.

We venerate and give offerings to our Lwa, and is known as "sevis" Lwa, Ginen or serving the Lwa aka Voodoo. Many people do not know what Vodou is and think they are spirits to do our bidding or spells. Remember we are their horses, they "own" our heads as the master or "met tet" and guardian angel. We have access but we do not own them. We serve. And as priests we are the conduits of these higher forces.

Charity also can be done on our terms. "Beggars cannot be choosers" is an old saying. Rules are also still rules, and are there for safety. If we turn someone away from misa, especially for repeatedly not following requirements, or due to the safety needed, that is the head medium and godparents perogative and needs to be respected. We are the ones who have the responsibility and wisdom.
Spirits also have to get in line, and play by our rules, or we run the risk of spiritual problems.
Some need tough love. But we always attempt to help and educate them first.
                                                     

                                                   Sancista Siete Encruzhiladas

By a side note, many stores such as grocery chains (in the USA) allow you to link a charity to your store loyalty card so check their websites. Also if you shop through Amazon smile link in your same account it will donate to your linked charity. Just by shopping I donated around $400 last year this way alone. It would have been more but I sometimes shop through ebates to save money when applicable online. 
Please do this it takes little effort at no cost to you.



Monday, April 3, 2017

White Bath: Connection to Ancestors and Guides

I already wrote about this when I wrote about cascarilla (ground eggshell or chalk), the color white, and cleansings, but I thought I would just do a short entry. A version of this I also wrote about for guardian angel work.  It is based on the Yoruban rogacion de cabeza or kobori eleda(feeding the head, Ori) but through espiritismo criollo. 

 You will need to pray over the mixture for your guides and ancestors. To the following add "good water" from your water cup on the boveda which is full of bubbles and you have the feeling of peace and purity. 

Cocoa butter, cascarilla, coconut water (traditionally fresh but I use coconut milk), holy water or rain water, a bit of honey, white flower petals from your boveda. A small splash of white rum or florida water can also be added. Flower petals from your boveda if you have them.

This is done on the head after lighting a white candle and a normal shower and not rinsed or towelled too much off. This can be done for an odd number of days sometimes after an odd number of days of doing a bitter herb wash neck down to remove negative energies. 

You will then dress in white with headwrap overnight and can use white bedding with cascarilla or a white clean towel, sleeping alone and avoiding violent movies, sexual activity, violent video games, spiritual work, arguments or spicy food anything to heat you up for 24 hours. The bath will give you peace or energy and done in the evening you will not go out after dark. The purpose of this is to clear your connection to your guides and through contamination of the spiritual fluids on your boveda to your head or conciousness

The white items are added also as clearing. If you cannot afford it or are desperate then just use the glass of water alone. Pour this over your head after showering, then towel off gently not too much, no need to rinse. Do this for a minimum of once a week for at least 3 weeks and replace the water glass right away, but you can do it 3 times a week or days in a row.

                                                                         Sancista 7 crossroads

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Spiritual Development: Desarrollo

These are some things put together but if you can thing of other ways to develop please comment.

Prayer at Boveda
Prayer and songs to your ancestors and guides to their presence.
Prayer is the most important offering because it elevates our spirits so they can better help us spiritually progress.
Giving and using cigars smoke also helps our communication as a messanger spirit.
We use prayers and bibliomancy of psalms and Allan Kardec's book of selected prayers.
Spontaneous words that are felt from the heart are also more effective than bland reading.
By following good suggestions and what the spirit require this reinforces our relationship and communication.
You might want to read my other entry on why your spirits are silent.
Some of them could take a couple years to even show themselves in some way, and the most important is faith, over thinking materially.


Keeping the boveda clean and giving your spirits candles, gives spiritual light and clarity, as the faculties or psychic sense all begin with the word "Clair" or clear. ex Clairaudience is clear hearing.

For that reason certain saint orations like to Saint Clare or Lucy (lucid/light) can be used. St Clare is associated with the Monstrance (of spiritual alchemy and enlightenment) and the ability to lead spirits to us through light.

With Santa Clara just the white of a white egg can be put into a water glass to clear up the frame, and messages can be seen inside. This can be placed in the middle of 3 white novena candles with the point facing up. This mimics the eye of God and the form of the spiritual frame. Tata Oriate advises a similar way of placing a whole white egg in the middle of the candles in his book.

The white egg adds clarity, but a whole brown one can be used to remove negativity in the frame, or the lighting of sulphur novenas and elevation work and prayers for 9 days. Putting the white egg is different as it adds clarity but similar to a cleansing egg limpa con huevo. Messages can be seen in the glass.

Developing is a slow and consistent process, it needs to be a routine well practiced. Just because we know how to do it mentally, does not mean anything until we make it a practice.

Cleansings:
Eyewashes with prepared herbal water and scrying helps clairvoyance.
When people ask how to open the third eye I also recommend detox of clean diet, water and personal care products. Certain herbs can also assist.

White bath rogacion to cleanse your head actually adds spiritual connection, usually done after bitter herb removing bath neck down for an odd number of days each.

Routine spiritual cleanings help a clear connection and with fresh flower petals to add back energy to your spiritual field and sensitivity. There are many ways to spiritually cleanse besides spiritual baths.

Dirty house, self and altar can attract unwanted dark spirits, who can cause spiritual and life blocks to our evolution. These will then have to be dealt with in misa or ceremony with persistent cases in person. Dark spirits can be sent by witchcraft, given access by our own bad actions or faults, or by unconsciously picking them up. The environmental factors can impact the internal.

Work on Divination
Everyones gifts are different or suited to different tools, and some abilities are slower to unfold
For example some at the boveda have inspired writing sessions or automatic writing.
Meditation
Imagination
Dream work
waterglass at bedside, etc
Hypnotism

Solar work: 
for cleansing and higher spirits and light, of spiritualism. Linked to ashe, life force.
System of energy work and manipulation whether qigong, reiki or yoga
Lunar work and natures rhythms, subconscious and shadow work.
These two areas must be balanced and harmonious together. They are the gateway beyond self control and knowing of personal thought and emotion to higher celestial or planetary energy and polarity.

The cross and monstrance on the boveda indicate this union and light as some also displayed eucharist communion wafer as a church icon.


Going to Misa Espirituale

In the presence of strong spiritual fluids, and can practice mediumship and add light to yourself and your spiritual court.
More experienced mediums can help investigate and confirm your guides, as well as work on ancestral and spiritual issues.
Here you can develop your gifts by practice with others.
Misa can be held to your spirits,or if Catholic can pay them to do mass for the dead.
It is good to attend many misa in your spiritual house, and as well if you cannot afford private misa.
Safely at misa you can work on mounting spirits or physical mediumship.
This development and connection is given firm foundation on baptism and crowning the dead: 
Misa Coronation.
This crowning also protects the medium from unwanted spirit mounting.
During misa the godchild will demonstrate development, 
and have misa investigation into the spiritual frame.

For those that have no misa near them, a priest with alot of ashe or development can come pray at your white table with a small suggested payment or derecho of $21 to add light.

Moral Progress
Key to Spiritual development is dependant on personal progress.
Our guides and ancestors see our efforts to improve our personality and right action.
We then: Merit power and cooperation by beings who see this.
But these powers that are given by certain spirits that have the power to do this,do not give this to anyone, but they prove the integrity and moral and spiritual integrity of the person, and if they see that person can handle a power. Because they will freeze it, they do not give more, or in other cases they withdraw the gift or power that they gave to that person, that for a misuse of that power. Power unfolds and goes to those more responsible with its usage. God gave our gifts and can take them away.
The Principal Guide, the important thing is to be aware of our connection with them. To invoke, but always asking for the blessing of (God), so that every work we do is for good and successful, with the guidance and assistance of our spiritual guide, to ask him to reveal his name, either through a dream, a vision, or that he comes down and directly, or message through another spirit.
We must have humility and give gratitude and acknowledgment of the good spirits and God and not take personal credit for mediumship abilities.

Spiritual Reward or Suffering
Osogbos (diseases, accidents, calamities, untimely death, misfortunes etc.) happen to those who abuse their power and faculties. 
Some suffering is expected as a human condition, as a result of reincarnation.
Our ancestors may allow suffering to happen or create these problems because they are displeased. We are their representatives on earth, and are linked to them spiritually. When we are living in accordance with our good ancestors, we are in spiritual flow and receive their blessings. They are permissive gateway spirits. Ask for their forgiveness and for not listening to their good advices with an offering. 

Even if someone deserves ill doing and you to serve justice, ask yourself if you would rather receive a higher reward. I found this true, we are tested due to our medium ability as a duty of service and for our moral betterment according to Kardec. As I continually resist bad or commit to the correct path, the more I am shown curses, and therefore the way to remove or protect the self.

Egun helps us to deal with the contradictions, injustices and imperfections that exist within life itself. When we are weak, they help us to tap into our strength and through them we ask that God hears and grants our requests so that we can walk the correct path of our earthly lives towards our destiny. We need our messengers and allies to help us, as the way of progress is to decrease our suffering and ignorance.

Throw mud get muddy I say. There is great protection in living the right life and in spiritual purity and cleansing all the time to keep any negative energy off, is easier to keep negative energy off as the number one way to prevent spiritual problems. The Yorubans believe in thought projection as a magical action, but that it cannot affect a good person. Or at least not as easily.



                                                           Sancista 7 crossroads