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The Human Family Crash Course Series {7} ~ Magic {6} ~ Ancient Magic Practices

Welcome fellow souls to « The Human Family Crash Course Series, » a new project collaborated together by empress2inspire.blog and dios-raw.com. Together we will be working on a different topic for each crash course; our seventh topic is focused on «Magic». Each topic will have ten posts with posts on Mondays and Thursdays. We hope you enjoy our series and we look forward to knowing how our posts have inspired you!

In ancient Egypt, Mesopotamia, Greece, and Rome, practitioners of magic exploited symbolic words, images, and rituals to achieve desired outcomes through supernatural means. Using magical acts, they attempted to control supernatural powers— gods, demons, spirits, or ghosts—to accomplish something beyond the scope of human capabilities. Here’s an attempt to understand the ancient magic practices and what they signified.

Spells

In ancient “binding magic,” it was all about the spells. Unlike modern-day magical phrases like, say, “bippity boppity boo,” practitioners of magic in ancient Greek and Rome used spells to “bind” people up to different outcomes in sporting events, business, and personal affairs related to love and even revenge. Binding spells had known formulas and named involved parties, like gods and people, and then connected them to actions or results. You could use a binding spell to invoke an upcoming athletic victory or ensure your happy marriage to a new partner—and to do so, you’d use powerful strings of words passed on by magicians or ordinary people.

Curses

One of the more charmingly bitter traditions of ancient Greece and Rome were “curse tablets”—spells written on lead, wax or stone that laid out the ways in which people had been wronged. Think of curse tablets as the takedowns of the ancient world: If someone disrespected or harmed you, you could head to your local magician and pay to curse them. People cursed people who hurt their family members, but they also cursed them when they committed crimes or even entered into court cases against them. Large caches of curse tablets have been found in Roman digs in the modern-day United Kingdom.

Voodoo Dolls

Of course, if someone dissed you, you also had the option of creating a tiny effigy to do harm to. Though sometimes compared to modern-day voodoo dolls, scholars still aren’t entirely sure what the tiny figurines used in binding magic in ancient Greece and Rome were for. What they do know is that the word “binding” was taken literally when it comes to these figures: They have been found in tiny coffins with bound hands and feet or mutilated bodies and seem to have been molded along with binding spells.

Divination

Just as today, the future was a source of concern in antiquity. This anxiety was mitigated by the use of a number of divinatory practices, including consultation with seers, oracles, and other specialists in predicting the future and interpreting signs and omens. In ancient Rome, astrologers, who read the movements of stars and constellations to determine the destiny of individuals, were commonly grouped with magicians as magical practitioners. Their power, derived from knowledge of the future, rendered them dangerous, with the result that they were frequently expelled from Rome throughout antiquity. In most societies from the ancient Mediterranean whose laws survive, offensive magic such as placing a curse was regarded as a crime. However, the legality of various divinatory practices changed according to time and culture.

Afterlife

Magic was a resource frequently used not just during life, but also after death. Many funerary practices incorporated magical elements. This was particularly the case in Egypt, where the intricate rituals of mummification ensured preservation of the body and soul for the afterlife. The placement of amulets over certain body parts during mummification and the preservation of organs in canopic jars protected the body for new life after death. The Egyptian Book of the Dead details these rituals, compiling spells that were painted or inscribed in the tomb and aided in achieving the ultimate restoration of life to the soul of the deceased. Similarly, mystery cults in ancient Greece and Rome had their own secret rituals that ensured an afterlife for their practitioners.

Hope this brings to light some of the ancient magic practices.

~Garima {Empress2Inspire}

The Human Family Crash Course Series {7} ~ Magic ~ {4} ~ Daily Life Magic

Welcome fellow souls to « The Human Family Crash Course Series, » a new project collaborated together by empress2inspire.blog and dios-raw.com. Together we will be working on a different topic for each crash course; our seventh topic is focused on «Magic». Each topic will have ten posts with posts on Mondays and Thursdays. We hope you enjoy our series and we look forward to knowing how our posts have inspired you!

There is a beautiful quote that goes “The secret of happiness that you see if not found in seeking more but developing the capacity of enjoying less.” It’s true that the more you have, the more you want, but there is a little secret that I will share with you all today. Magic happens when you hold on, when you press pause and look at what you already got all around you. Your life is already so rich and full, sometimes you need to take a step back to remember that. We are made to believe that life is all about those big moments, those surprises, those holidays, those big moments, those WOW moments, but the thing is that if your entire life is spent in waiting for the next big WOW moment, there will be a lot of time and days in between that will feel nothing more than mundane. Time spent finding beauty in the simple moments is never time wasted.

Here are some of my favorite things that bring me great joy and remind me to slow down each day everyday ~

~Seeing the sunlight peeking through the curtains in the morning.
~A freshly made bed.
~Creaking floorboards in an old house.
~Fresh lemon water.
~Frosted spring mornings.
~The sounds of the birds.
~Peaceful walks in nature.
~The sound of rustling leaves.
~Cuddles with your pet.
~Watching the raindrops roll down the glass.
~The sound of the rain.
~Hearing the spin of the washing machine.
~Misty morning.
~Arranging fresh flowers.
~The sizzle of the pan as I cook my favorite meal.
~Taking the time to make a peaceful environment for myself.
~Candle lit baths.
~The flicker of a flame.
~The smell of freshly baked banana bread.
~Making the first morning cup of tea for the day.
~Having the morning light course through my home.
~Spring flowers and all that beauty and promise.
~Changing the bedding on a sunny day.
~Washing swaying outside on the line.
~Fresh flowers.
~The rainbow my light catcher makes.
~Long shadows in my home in the afternoon.

So let us take out some time today and think about things that you really look for in your life. It could be something very small, it doesn’t have to be something big, as I said, we often look forward to bigger things in life but life is in the little moments everyday. So make a list of what are those moments for you. They may sound mundane but they are magic. If you cherish those simple calm moments. Your life will become a whole lot different. Instead of looking forward to the weekend and all the little plans you have got, and dreading the five days in between where you have got to work, you could really look forward to every little moment each day. You may want to cozy on your sofa or you may be the social butterfly who wants to go out and meet your friends and family, that’s entirely up to you. But find your little things to be grateful about, to be mindful about.

These moments really make life worth living because without them, it gets to be very monotonous, you know, the same routine over and over and over again. Without these little sparks of joy it becomes very hard to carry on forward in life and feel positive because you only have these big things going on but sometimes those big things do not make up for the past things that have happened in your life. So taking the time to enjoy those simple moments will definitely change your life. It has definitely changed my life.

Take in your environment, all of it and instead of looking at the negatives, look at positives. These positives may be private and personal only to you and that’s okay. No one else has to understand what works for you if you like it, so be it. I would love to know what are those little things in your life which make you happy and which keep you grounded and sane on a daily basis. Please do share. There might be things that you intentionally enjoy or there might be things that this post has struck for you and you may say “Actually, those are some of the things that I like too!.”

So much of society today focuses far too much on the superficial things in life and I really think that living your own life, trying to enjoy it as much as you can is going to make the happiest as you can be and ensure that you can be happy and so are the people around you. And that to me is the meaning of life. We are here to build each other and walk each other home. That my friends is the little nugget of wisdom for the day. Hope you liked this post.

~Garima {Empress2Inspire}

~Pravritti~

Pravritti is a Sanskrit term derived from the root word, pra, meaning “different,” and vrtti representing citta vritti, or the mind’s thoughts. The term refers to one of two possible life paths as defined in yoga and Hinduism, with the other possible path being nivritti. Sometimes these are seen as the path of action (pravritti) versus the path of knowledge (nivritti).

Pravritti is the path of directing action and focus toward the external world and, therefore, is the path that yogis follow most of the time when they are living in the material world. On this path, attention is directed toward worldly things such as possessions, career and income. In contrast, nivritti is the path of turning inward to more spiritual contemplation, perhaps with more focus on God or the Divine.

~Shiva Lingam~

Shiva lingam is a symbol made from a sacred Hindu stone found in the Narmada River in western India and represents the Hindu god, Shiva.

Within yoga, the biggest benefit of Shiva lingam can be found in the way in which it allows the practitioner to store and intensify energy in the body. It is also said to promote feelings of well-being and being one with the world.

Shiva lingam is widely regarded as being a phallic symbol, often seen together with its female counterpart, yoni, which represents the goddess, Shakti. Both of these stones tend to rest in the center of temples. The shape of the Shiva lingam is said to enable energy retention for the maximum amount of time with balance and complete harmony.

Used for meditating and worshiping for centuries, Shiva lingam assists the practitioner with entering into a deeper state of meditation, expanding the mind and leading to a greater understanding of the spiritual whole that makes up the universe. When performed correctly, these stones are reported to permit greater energy levels as well as deeper and longer lasting peace and calmness.

~Laghima~

Laghima is one of the eight major siddhis (spiritual or paranormal abilities) of a spiritually advanced person in some traditions of Hinduism. Laghima, a Sanskrit word meaning “absence of weight,” is the power to make the physical body so light that it is almost weightless and, some believe, could float in the air or levitate.

The siddhis, including laghima, are developed through yoga, meditation, pranayama and other sadhanas. Laghima is described in the Vibhuti Pada of Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras.

Instruments {2} ~ African Djembe Drum

The djembe is one of West Africa’s best known instruments. This goblet-shaped drum is traditionally carved from a single piece of African hardwood and topped with an animal skin as a drumhead. In western understanding, the drum belongs to the membranophone class of instruments in the percussion family.

Some say the name of the djembe came from the Bamana in Mali, who said “Anke dje, anke be” to call their people together, as the saying translates as “everyone gather together.” “Dje” means gather and “be” means everyone, which gave the drum used in these calls to order its name. The Bamanakans’ mythology tells of the original djembe, which was made of the hide of a giraffe-zebra hybrid called the gebraffe. There are at least a dozen stories of the history of the drum told by many master drummers. My master tells these stories and then steps back as even he, doesn’t purport to know the real truth. In history, the Mandinka of Manden became the Malinke of Mali. We often refer to them as the Mandé.

The djembe drum is most likely about 400-800 years old, and was created during the Malian Empire by the Mandé people. It spanned the modern-day countries of Senegal, southern Mauritania, Mali, northern Burkina Faso, western Niger, the Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Guinea, the Ivory Coast and northern Ghana. The Mali Empire grew out of an area referred to by its contemporary inhabitants as Mande. Mande, named for its inhabitants the Mandinka (initially Manden’ka with “ka” meaning people of), comprised most of present-day northern Guinea and southern Mali. The empire was originally established as a federation of Mandinka tribes called the Manden Kurufa (literally Manden Federation), but it later became an empire ruling millions of people from nearly every ethnic group in West Africa.

It is taught that the Blacksmiths made the first djembes, making each drum custom-fitted to the drummer who would play it. This makes sense as they would be the people to cut the tree. The making of the drum was spiritual, and the blacksmith was obliged to make offerings to the spirits of the trees he cut down. With the lengue tree, a sacrifice would be made to ask for permission to cut the tree for a djembe. Once the blacksmith finished the djembe, it was delivered to the drummer who commissioned it, a member of the jeli caste. The jeli are musicians, who are responsible for the oral history of their people. This remains true to today.

Source ~ https://www.drumconnection.com/africa-connections/history-of-the-djembe/

~Bagalamukhi~

Bagalamukhi is the eighth of Hinduism’s 10 great wisdom goddesses known as the Dasha Mahavidyas. She is also known as Bagala for short and as the “goddess who paralyzes enemies.” In later tantric yoga, Bagalamukhi is associated with the practice of pranayama.

In some traditions, she is an incarnation of the goddess Kali. Bagalamukhi translates as “the one who checks the mouth.” She is so-named for her power to silence speech and still the mind. In yoga, such a state helps the yogi find peace and higher states of consciousness.