Monday, April 14, 2014

Extraordinary Ordination

Things got really bzzzy and exciting in my world as my long-anticipated ordination with CAYA Coven approached, happened, and then there was the strange and marvelous decompression phase that followed. Here I am, a month later, trickling back into my blog to make sure everything is in its place. A challenge I've worked on throughout my life is completing things. Anything. The fact that I successfully completed my Initiation Year is a landmark in my personal story. Beyond the significance of committing myself to a community in this way, it is also a rare occurence of matriculation to graduation for me. Can I even count the number of times I've entered a school, program, or any course of study and dropped out just as I approached completion? Many times, this was the correct action for me, however I felt ready to try a new practice: achieving a goal. A major factor in this instance has been that I sincerely love the community of CAYA Coven, and have found that our common purposes of inclusiveness and service are compatible in practice and in the oft underestimated aesthetics. In short, I lucked out by falling in with the right crowd.

And so I may now humbly introduce myself to the world…

Jaina Bee, Priest/ess of the Eternal Now in CAYA Coven's Wildflower Tradition, dedicated to Kuan Yin, Ganesh, and Hermes

When the new CAYA website is up, my complete bio will be posted, with more background on this choice of title, and also my personal code of ethics. Stay tuned!

Meanwhile, I've had a book sitting on my desk for weeks, waiting to be reviewed so that I may honestly complete my list of requirements for this honor of ordination.

For my final book in the required reading series, I chose yet another shamanic-flavored one. Animal Speak: The Spiritual & Magical Powers of Creatures Great & Small by Ted Andrews was on more than one Priest/ess's recommended list. The most apparently helpful feature of this book is the extensive dictionaries of animal totems for birds, insects, reptiles and mammals. This informative reference alone is worth having within reach, however there is much more to appreciate about Ted's book. Sections on fetishes, reading omens, meditations and rites offer a great starting point for exploring one's connection with the magickal opportunities offered by our animal friends. The tones of respect, reverence, and delight fill this book with glowing inspiration.

Some bits I marked for further considerations and explorations:
"You must develop your own dictionary.… you must learn the dialect that is best for you."
Shapeshifting Exercise
"Many have difficulty reconciling predation with anything other than cruelty…" (there's much more to this quote, and I recommend looking this up!)
"For any relationship to work, there must be three elements: silence, respect, and sharing."
"By asking a favor, you are honoring that person and giving respect for what he or she can do."
The four common kinds of wing structures
Feather and Fetish Pot exercise
"[Pigeons] are the only bird that can drink by sucking up water into their beaks. This reflects that ability to draw on the energies of home, no matter how distant."

Presenting the Ordains of Hive 14 (photo by Val)