Tag Archives: woodland ceremony

Autumn/ Samhain/ Winter 2018 Seasonal rituals coming up

Hi all..   Am organizing the following seasonal festivities in the woods as usual.  Just click the links/ pictures  to visit the relevant events under my `London woodland witches’ meetup events.   Bright Blessings. -Mani

 

Autumn Equinox: Ritual & Seasonal Gathering 2018  (saturday 22nd September 2018)

Woodland witches Autumn eqx 2018

 

Samhain 2018 – Woodland Witches Ritual & Halloween Gathering (Sunday 28th October 2018)

Woodland witches Samhain 2018- sunday28th

 

Woodland Mid-Winter Ritual & Yule Celebrations – (Saturday 22nd December 2018)

Woodland witches Yule 2018

 

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Photographing Sophie – Highs, lows and lessons!

My father’s body wasn’t even cold in the hospital body, but I ran up to the car, grabbed my camera, came back to the Intensive care unit and started taking a few `forensic’ photos of his torn ear, head injury – all through my tearful and blurry eyes!  That was one cold hour past midnight back in January 1990.  And here I am, on a Summer’s day in June 2018.  What’s that got to do with Sophie?   Well, the common thread.. is Photography! And  she’s very well, energised and happy that her photo’s going viral all over new sites around the world this morning, following our visit to Stonehenge yesterday – in case you were worried for her!

Sophie photo - woodland autumn 2017 by Mani Navasothy.jpg
Autumn Equinox ceremony- September 2017 – with Aaron as Hades and Sophie as Persephone . Photo (c) Mani Navasothy.        www.QuantumPhoenix.net

Sophie first attended one of my Woodland Witches & Pagan ceremony- back in Autumn 2017. She had glitter make up on her cheeks and a new agey jacket.   But that’s not what caught my attention (well that did catch my eyes).  I was asking for volunteers form the attendees to take on a ritual role of the Goddess, and Sophie  stepped forward.  Now normally only experienced or regular attendees volunteer..  so I was surprised, but she looked every bit like she could carry the beautiful and maiden Goddess Persephone who gets abducted by the Dark Lord Pluto/ Hades and taken to underworld..  So I accepted her offer..  And my friend Aaron took on the role of Hades!  The ritual went well, and their roles – symbolic – and directed and coached by me – went well too.

Since then, Sophie has attended many of our woodland ceremonies & socials, hung out with us, gone camping with us to Glastonbury, day trip to Hasting and sea side, and more recently (yesterday) an ver night drive out trip to Summer Solstice at Stonehenge and then Avebury.   She’s become a good magical friend of mine..  (and still remains awesomely beautiful like a Goddess!)

For me, Photography is not a hobby..!!

As the opening paragraph will have told you.. `taking photos’  is  a serious `interest’ of mine..  capturing real life moments and characters of people on photo – as I do that ..be it my father who had just died, or a sun set, or a Maypole Dance …or a mermaid like Sophie after a ceremony !)   Why ?  because life is precious, moments are magical and once past ..can never be lived again, and I have insecurities about loosing people that are dear to me.  So I snap away..  moment after moment.. trying to hold of to them all, lest I forget!   I have done since I was a little boy.  (Now am almost a 49 yr old middle-aged man!)

That said, one of my growing gripes / disappointments / irritations in modern times – is that of my creativity being hijacked or worse `stolen’ .

I see moments …character..  beauty ..  life..death..  and all inbetween..  and capture it..  Or compose it creatively and artistically.  If it’s people – friends – I direct them (be it a video production or a photoshoot).  Then I shoot the picture.  So it infuriates me, when someone standing next to me – swoops in – without so much as a polite request – and takes the shots that I line up and the people that I direct.  This happens a lot now.

On the one hand, I am happy for the person whose photos are being taken.  They are being `seen’ and their moment being recognised and captured.    But unlike me who honours, respects and uses it to empower people, others often seem to just steal a moment..  and that person’s soul!  They don’t seem to give acknowledgement or thanks to the subject at hand.  They don’t seem to celebrate them.  They don’t seem to offer them anything in return as a kind gesture.

This I realise happens a lot in the cut-throat world of Photography, Journalism, media, movie and celebrity culture we now live in.  If someone is in public eye, they are fair game?  Is that it? Is that right?

sophie photos - Baz Beltane
Sophie with Maypole  at Woodland witches Beltane Ceremony – May 2018.   Main photo shoot by Mani Navasothy (3rd photo by Baz).          http://www.QuantumPhoenix.net

Of course some of my other friends who swoop into copy or steal a shot that I line up or direct ..aren’t all like that.  They are part of my world, my friendship groups and my spiritual communities.  When they do too much that swoop & shot, I do hit back with a joke..  (or in the case of one friend, I actually did throw a light punch at his stomach ..with a smile on my face!  We hugged it out afterwards..  but I needed to make the point, and words were not sinking that message!)

sophie photos - david mani
Hastings.  Sophie adoring Sea.    Main Photo shoot by Mani Navasothy (1st photo by David). http://www.QuantumPhoenix.net

Ever since a Hindu priest threw a bucket of water in my direction at a Temple chariot festival 2 years ago, and that blessed water splashing all over my camera, my equipment has not been its full self.  The view screen doesn’t work, and video image stabilizer malfunctions.  Currently I don’t have enough finances to buy the next gen DSLR.  So I make do with a wounded camera…

Well, half the time, I don’t even carry it..  because that’s not my work!  My work is Priesthood, and as a Magical /Pagan events Organiser and Teacher.  I can’t organise an event, take care of all the  related matters, and support, nurture and empower the people ..attendees.. if am clutching on to a camera.  So moments come and go..and others capture it..   and sometimes I take out my mobile phone and catch a part of it.  (well, effectively, I conjure the Event and others capture it..  Put it the media way, I make the News and others report it!)

I say I don’t worry about this..  but writing this blog indicates that I do!  In so much as if my artistry and creativity and Art directions are being used by other people, they should do the decent and honourable thing- of either paying me a proper fee – especially if they used such a shot and sold it to papers…and that got used by many news sites all over the world!

 

sophie photos - Dail mail
Sophie at Stonehenge, Summer Solstice 2018.   This shows screen capture of pic that some other photographer swooped into steal and sold to media. (screen shot of DailMail news site).

Sophie was just walking away when I called her to stand by that stone, to put her head on that stone, to not look at camera, but look at the Sun, and to close her eyes.  That was my work…capturing a moment of my friend ..to give it back to my friend.  But the thief who stole that over my shoulder has sold his shot, and earned some money off my creativity ..and my friend.

Does that seem right to you?

There are two upshots to this whole experience.  1.  Sophie is feeling happy that her photos and her rune & glitter make up creativity – yes that’s her own magical creativity and her face ..is seen all over the world.  (How long before she gets a modelling contract?! Yeah!)    2.  I finally realise the value of my own Artistic talents…and it’s time I put my Photography services forward.

I’ll leave you with the exclusive shot of Sophie (test shoot) as an Antlered Goddess!!

-Mani Navasothy

Author Teacher Ritual Magician (and Photographer!)

Antlered Goddess poject sophie
Sophie – Antlered Goddess .  photo (c) Mani Navasothy  http://www.QuantumPhoenix.net

 

Links:

London Woodland Witches – Outdoor pagan Rituals (meetup)

Quantumligh Photography & Videos by Mani Navasothy (facebook page) – 

Daily mail feature – Summer Solstice 2018 

Woodland Midsummer Ritual by Hern’s Tribe – 17thJune 2017 (North London)

Join us  to celebrate Midsummer  2017..  with ceremony & socials.  We’ll drum, dance and make merry …after the ceremony to honour the Sun that’s reached the height of his power.  We’ll also be marking/ celebrating our own personal achievements 🙂

 date:  Saturday  17th June 2017.

Duration: 2pm to 5pm.  (meeting from 1.30pm)

`This marks the height of the Summer, and the longest day of the year. Astrologically, it is exactly the point when the Sun enters the sign of Cancer (which is the natural house of the Moon!). The new-born Sun of the midwinter (Yule) has grown to it’s fullest potential, and so pagans are mindful at Midsummer that the wheel turns. It is when the previously defeated Holy-King returns, challenges the Oak-King and wins. Thus at Midsummer, the rein of the Oak King ends and the one of Holy King begins. Midsummer games such as tug of war enact this battle between summer and winter forces. In terms of the God myths, it is a time for the God to become Sun-King, and take his place on the throne of responsibility for his people’

RITUAL :  

Out ritual *Team will conduct key aspects of the ceremony, with plenty of opportunities for everyone to get  involved in the actual ritual   – ie with elements calling, chants, magical work and so on.

****suggested Fee:  £3 per person***

RITUAL items to bring:

– Ritual cloths/ robes/ cloaks / ground sheets / blankets
– Staff / wands / antlers / tribal masks / flower crowns (No athame!! ..  No swords!)
– Drums & musical instruments
– Lanterns / candles / lighter  (all candles in lanterns only please, unless it’s large pillar-candles.  Strictly No tea-lights on ground or trees!!)
– Crystals / runes / divination tools
– Poetry / invocations (learnt or to read)

No Children:

We ask no children / babies in prams etc to be brought.

Behaviour / alcohol/ drugs policy

This is in a public woodland/ park.    We wish to make sure  the good reputation/ credibility of our group/ members/ organisers are maintained.   So please BE on good behaviour.    No drugs/  substances allowed.  Anyone found disrupting will be asked to leave..  and in extreme cases, organisers may call the Police for the safety & well-being of everyone else present.  Don’t ruin it for all.. Be good!  🙂

Photos/ privacy:

Please do not take photos during set-up, run-through or ritual..   Other times, it’s fine.  It’s in a public place so we can not stop the public walking through or taking pics.   If worries about your privacy / identity,  please wear a ritual mask to safeguard your identity in photos that others may take of the group.

Meeting place (Woodman’s Pub):

Gather in the Woodman’s Pub from 1.30pm..  Get to `High Gate’ Tube station..  come up to manin road. Turn right.  Pub is just 30 seconds away.

After Ceremony & some socials in the woods, we will head back to the pub (woodmans) for more socials.

-Mani Navasothy

Wiccan High Priest & Founder of  London Woodland Witches and Outdoor Pagans.

Link to meetup event

Woodland Midsummer Ritual by Hern’s Tribe – June 2017 (Queen’s Woods)

Saturday, Jun 17, 2017, 2:00 PM

Queen’s Woods
Near Highgate Station London, GB

52 Woodland Witches & Pagans Went

Join us  to celebrate Midsummer  2017..  with ceremony & socials.  We’ll drum, dance and make merry …after the ceremony to honour the Sun that’s reached the height of his power.  We’ll also be marking/ celebrating our own personal achievements :-)New date:  Saturday  17th June 2017•***** Fee: £3 per person **`This marks the height of the Summ…

Check out this Meetup →

 

Welcoming Bride Virgin Goddess – Woodland Wicca Imbolc Ceremony in N.London (Jan2017)

Join us for the afternoon/ early evening to mark IMBOLC (Candlemas).

“Imbolc is said to be the time when the Winter Goddess who has kept her grip on the land loosens her hold, so that the ice melts and waters break and flow again. It is when the Goddess Bride (Brigid) `returns’ to the land. Her path is lit by candles, symbolising the return of light and warmth which is imminent. Bride is a Goddess of poetry, inspiration, healing, knot-magic and weaving. With her, she brings the gifts of 3 flames!”   (taken from my site  www.WitchcraftandMagic.uk )

*** Fee: £3 **

We now have a formal ritual team. Also many requested us to carry on doing rituals in north london. (But organiser lives in South London!) So to cover various meetup running costs & ritual expenses, we now have a fixed fee of £3 per person.

Practical Details:

  • Date: Saturday 28th Januar 2017
  • Time: 2pm meeting at Woodman’s pub (Patio garden) for walking to woods and 3pm ritual start (ritual start time is approx due to organic nature of setting up)
  • venue:  Queen’s Woods, Wood Lane (nearest tube: High Gate – Northern line).
  • Meeting point: Woodman’s Pub, Archway Road –   Meet us in the back garden – patio area of The Woodman’s pub..(corner of Archway Road) ..2 mins from HighGate tube (north london). We’ll leave at 2.30pm .. walk *together* to the woods, set up altar and do ritual.

RITUAL :

This is an open ritual held in an outdoor park/woods with easy public access..

Out ritual *Team will conduct key aspects of the ceremony, with plenty of opportunities for everyone to get involved in the actual ritual – ie with elements calling, chants, magical work and so on.

Outline:

  • Wiccan Opening Prayer, sweeping & Consecrations
  • Circle casting & Element quarters called
  • Farewell to Winter Goddess
  • Invocation of Virgin Goddess Bride / Bridget
  • Bride arrives via a path lit by candles ..and blesses all with her 3 gifts of flames
  • Cakes & Wine blessed & shared
  • Close circle
  • Feasting

Invocations (video examples)

  • Plea to Winter Goddess (video by Mani Navasothy)

  • Call to Bride – Virgin Goddess (video by Mani Navasothy) 

 

RITUAL items to bring:

– Your ritual cloths/ robes/ cloaks
– Staff / wands / antlers / tribal masks
– Drums & musical instruments
– Lanterns / candles / lighter
– Crystals / runes / divination tools
-Poetry / invocations (learnt or to read)

To stay in touch with the woodland rituals I organise, please visit my meetup group (free to join) London Woodland Witches & Outdoor Pagans’ 

-Mani Navasothy

(Esoteric Author, events Organiser & Wiccan High Priest)