Spirit Message of the Day – Creative Renewal Cycle

The Elder is linked to the eternal turnings of life and death, birth and rebirth. It represents the end in the beginning and the beginning in the end; life in death and death in life; the casting out of devils of the old year and the renewal and creativity of the new; the timelessness of the cycle by which the fading of old age is always balanced by the start of new birth.

Magickal Associations: Exorcism, prosperity, banishing, healing

Elder (Ruis) 25 November–22 December

  • The Elder Moon contains the darkest days of the year
  • The day after the end of the Elder Moon month, before the start of the Birch Moon, is no month at all, but an “in between” day. Nameless Day: 23 December
  • The Elder Moon’s qualities include death and regeneration, the Crone phase of the Goddess, wisdom, transformation, and the Underworld.
  • Elder is sacred to Wiccans. Elder shows the path through the maze, the spiral path that leads within, and the meeting place where birth and death are one.
  • The Celts believed that the elder could never be cut unless permission was asked of the trees.
  • Wiccans believe Elder should never be burned in the cauldron. See the Wiccan Rede.

Excerpt taken from http://irelandsown.net/celtictrees.html


  • 13th Moon of the Celtic Year – (Nov 25 – Dec 23)
  • Latin name: Dwarf Elder – sambucus ebulus; Elderberry – sambucus canadenis.
  • Celtic name: Ruis (pronounced: roo ish).

Folk or Common names: Lady Elder, Elder, Elderberry, pipe tree, bore tree, bour tree, Eldrun, Hyldor, Hyllantree, Ellhorn, Sambucus. Parts Used: Bark, leaves, flowers, berries, wood. Herbal usage: The Elder has many medicinal uses, and can be used to treat over 70 conditions. The bark can be used fresh for headaches and to promote labor, or can be dried and powdered and used in small doses as a diuretic. The leaves and flowers can be made into drinks, poultices and salves. Elderberry flower water is useful for soothing sunburns. The berries are safe to eat when eaten ripe, and they can be used to make wines, jams and teas.

Magical History & Associations:
The Elder is a tree of Venus and is associated with the element of air. The bird associated with the month of Elder is the rook, the color is blood-red, and the gemstone is dark green malachite. The Elder also is associated with Black Horses, Ravens, and Badgers. The Elder is linked to the eternal turnings of life and death, birth and rebirth, and creativity and renewal. It represents the end/beginning and beginning/end. It is sacred to the deities of Bran, Venus, Hel, Callech, Holda, the White Goddess, the Great Goddess, and Pryderi (The Celts believed that it was during the time of Elder that their sun or solar spirit was held prisoner, just as Pryderi was forced into exile).  

The Elder is the Old Crone aspect of the triple Goddess, wise old energy at the end of the year’s cycle, and is sometimes called the “death tree” because of this. Funerary flints found in megalithic long barrows were Elder leaf shaped, suggesting the association of Elder with death goes back a long way. Elder is also called the “witch’s tree” and certainly the village hedge-witch would have used the elder in healing and Magick. The Elder is also associated with a dryad (tree spirit). Early European legends tell of a dryad called Hylde-moer, The Elder Tree Mother, who lives in the Elder tree and watches over it. Should the tree be chopped down and furniture made of the wood, Hylde-moer would follow her property and haunt the owners.

Magickal Usage:
The month of Elder includes the Winter Solstice, which is celebrated as the Sabbat of Yule, a day to mark the return of the Sun. Therefore, calling upon the Sun God or Goddess is good to do during this month. Elder has the Magickal powers of Healing, Visions, Faery Magick, Spirituality, Cleansing, Sleep, Exorcism, Offering, Love, Protection, and Prosperity. Elder is often used to produce visions. At Samhain, the last of the Elderberries were picked with solemn rites. The wine made from these berries was considered the last sacred gift of the Earth Goddess, and was valued and drunk ritually to invoke prophecy, divination and hallucinations. Elder twigs were woven into head-dresses to enable the wearers to see spirits.

The Elder is very useful in Magick dealing with Nature Spirits and the Fae. Wood spirits are said to live in Elder forests, and wood elves are said to come to listen to music played by flutes made with Elder wood. The Elder has strong protective qualities. Tiny twigs of Elder or dried Elderberry can be worn in a bag around the neck as a charm for protection against physical or psychic attack. As a protection against evil (and later against witchcraft) Elder branches were hung in doorways of houses and cowsheds. Elder can be used to bless a person, place or thing by scattering leaves and berries to the four directions, and over the thing or person being blessed. It is said that if you stand under an Elder tree, you will never be struck by lightening. Elder was also buried in graves to ward off evil spirits, and is considered protection against earthbound, “physical” spirits like vampires. Elder as Vampire-Repellent is older folklore than the lore about garlic. When you put Elder on a threshold or windowsill, you can force a vampire to count over the thorns and the berries until morning comes, because vampires are obsessive-compulsive about counting things.

Also, Elder blossom were worn at Beltane to signify witchcraft and magic, and Elder twigs can be used to undo evil magic. Elder is a traditional wood for making Magickal tools, like besoms and wands. It is said in Irish folklore that it is Elder and not Ash which is used by witches for their magic ‘hobby horses’ and besoms. Justice was often dispensed under an Elder, so the hilt of a coven sword was often made of Elder wood. Elder is also a good wood to use to make Protective Wands. There are very strong superstitions about not cutting down or burning an Elder (maybe caused by a fear of releasing the tree’s Hylde-moer – or maybe out of a deep respect for the tree), so be sure to remember to ask the tree if it will allow you to take a branch. It is traditional to say this before you cut a branch:

“Lady Ellhorn, give me of thy wood,
And I will give thee of mine,
when I become a tree.”

Excerpt taken from http://www.dutchie.org/Tracy/trees/celtic_tree_elder.html

The American elder (canadensis) , also known as Elderberry, is small tree that grows to 12 feet and is native to North America. The European elder (nigra) grows to 30 feet, is found throughout Europe, Asia, North Africa, and has been naturalized in the United States. The tree has been called “the medicine chest of the common people.

The fruits have been used to make elderberry wine, and when cooked, can be used in pies and jams. The berries contain more vitamin C than any other herb except rosehips and black currant.


The Elder tree berry has been used for centuries as a natural intestinal cleanser. Both the flower and the berry possess powerful antioxidant properties that help protect your health by attacking harmful free radicals that damage cells. Elderberries also nourish the circulatory system. Herbalists praise Elderberry as an invigorating, rejuvenating general tonic.

Official Latin Name: Sambucus nigra

Elderberry, also known as Black Elder, Boor Tree, Bountry, Elder, Ellanwood, Ellhorn, European Elder, and German Elder, grows in Europe and North America. The name Elder is thought to refer to an old Anglo-Saxon term, “aeld”, meaning fire or kindle, as the hollow stems of the Elder were blown on a fire to get it started. Many cultures felt this tree was so special that they refused to burn the wood or use it to make furniture, lest it bring bad luck to the household. It was planted by homes to protect the house from lightning, bring prosperity, happy marriage and healthy children, and protect from evil. Elderberry helps strengthen and maintain the immune & respiratory systems. Elderberry may be taken to help prevent colds and flu. Taken at the first sign of cold or flu, Elderberry will generally reduce the course of the infection down to one or two days. Elderberry focuses on the nutritional needs of the immune system offering the body additional amounts of vitamin C, fruit acids and traces of essential oils and anthocyanci pigments.

Elderberry helps eliminate toxic stagnations that are typically the home for infectious bacteria. The antibiotic, antiviral and antibacterial properties found in Elderberry also work to stimulate the skin, kidneys and lymphatic system. The Flavonoids, including Quercetin, are believed to account for the therapeutic effects of the Elderberry flowers and berries. A study in humans determined that an extract of Elderberries is an effective treatment for influenza. Animal studies have shown the flowers to have anti-inflammatory properties. The common name Elder also includes the species  Sambucus canadensis, which is used interchangeably with  Sambucus nigra.

Excerpt taken from http://www.kcweb.com/herb/elderberry.htm

Elderberry (Sambucus canadensis)

The American elder (canadensis) , also known as Elderberry, is small tree that grows to 12 feet and is native to North America. The European elder (nigra) grows to 30 feet, is found throughout Europe, Asia, North Africa, and has been naturalized in the United States. The tree has been called “the medicine chest of the common people. The flowers, leaves, berries, bark and roots have all been used in traditional folk medicine for centuries. The fruits have been used to make elderberry wine, and when cooked, can be used in pies and jams. The berries contain more vitamin C than any other herb except rosehips and black currant.

The elder also has a rich background of cultural superstitions. In the Middle Ages legends held that tree was home to witches and that cutting down one would bring on the wrath of those residing in the branches. The Russians and the English believe that elder trees ward off evil spirits and it was considered good luck to plant a tree near your home. Sicilians think that sticks of elder wood can kill serpents and drive away thieves.

This herb has a long history dating beyond the stone ages. Egyptians discovered that applying its flowers improved the complexion and healed burns. Many early Indian tribes used elderberry, and its variants, in teas and other beverages. In the 17th century the British often drank home made wine and cordials that was thought to prolong life and cure the common cold. The berries from the elder contain a considerable amount of vitamins A, B and C, as well as flavonoids, sugar, tannins, carotenoids and amino acids. Warm elderberry wine is a remedy for sore throat, influenza and induces perspiration to reverse the effects of a chill. The juice from the berries is an old fashioned cure for colds, and is also said to relieve asthma and bronchitis.

Infusions of the fruit are beneficial for nerve disorders, back pain, and have been used to reduce inflammation of the urinary tract and bladder. Raw berries have laxative and diuretic properties, however the seeds are toxic and may induce vomiting and nausea. Elderberries are edible when cooked. Elder leaves contain the flavonoids rutin and quercertin, alkaloids, vitamin C and sambunigrin, a cyanogenic glucoside. Fresh elder leaves also contain hydrocyanic acid, cane sugar, invertin, betulin, free fatty acids, and a considerable quantity of potassium nitrate. Elder flowers and elder flower water have been used in a variety of ways topically and as a tonic mixture.

Elder flowers are a mild astringent and are used in skin washes to refine the complexion and help relieve eczema, acne and psoriasis. Flower water makes a soothing gargle and when strained makes an excellent eye wash. The leaves and flowers are a common ingredient in ointments and poultices for burns and scalds, swelling, cuts and scrapes. Infusions and preparations with the blossoms combined with other herbs have also been used to quicken recovery form the common cold and flu. Parts Used: Bark, leaves, flowers, berries.

Common Use: Topically for infections, inflammations and swelling. As a wash for skin healing and complexion purification. As a tea and cordial to sooth sore throats, speed recovery from cold and flu and relieve respiratory distress. Cooked and used in jams and conserves. Care: Prefers sandy or loamy soil rich in humus and nitrogen. Full sun or partial shade. http://www.patch-work.demon.co.uk/elder.htm

The first shoots of the Common Elder boiled like asparagus, and the young leaves and stalks boiled in fat broth, do mightily carry forth phlegm and choler. The middle or inward bark boiled in water, and given in drink works much more violently; and the berries, either green or dry, expel the same humour, and are often given with good success to help the dropsy; the bark of the root boiled in wine, or the juice thereof drank, works the same effects, but much more powerfully than either the leaves or fruit. The juice of the root taken, mightily procures vomiting, and purges the watery humours of the dropsy…

Nicholas Culpeper, 17th century herbalist
The elder flowers in June in large, flat plates of flowerheads (called umbrells) made up of many tiny cream-white flowers. If you make sure they are clean of bugs, they can be eaten sraight off the branches on a hot summers day. The berries can be considered ripe when the clusters begin to turn upside down. Avoid picking berries that have become over-ripe. Wash well and strip from the stalks using a dining fork. The berries can be added to apple pie (40 elderberries:60 apple) or blackberry jam (50:50). The elderberry is often known as the Englishman’s grape, and it’s nutritional values show that it is similar to the grape and more so…Please note: For safety reasons DO NOT use the leaves, bark or roots of Elder for consumtion. They can be poisonous!!!

Black Elder Botanical name: Sambucus nigra
Black Elder – also known as Common Elder – is a deciduous bush, shrub or small tree that grows to a height of 8 meters. It grows wild in woods, hedgerows, and along roadsides. It’s also a very common plant in home gardens, parks and other areas with nutrient-rich soil. The black elder plant has corky grey-brown bark and green, pinnate and toothed leaves. The leaves have a characteristic and unpleasant smell when crushed.

The small, cream-coloured flowers are arranged in flat-topped clusters. They have a strong, aromatic and very pleasant, musky fragrance. The ripe, globose stone-fruits – the elderberries – are black, juicy and bitter to taste though they become milder and sweeter after the first frost – or after a week or so in the freezer. Black elderberries are very rich in antioxidants. Leaves, bark, flowers and fruits are used for many medicinal and culinary purposes including wine making. Black Elder has been called the medicine chest of the people, and earlier there was much folklore, superstition, and witchcraft associated with this plant. WARNING! Do not confuse Black Elder or Common Elder with Red Elder (Sambucus racemosa). RED elderberries are POISONOUS.

Excerpt taken from www.homestead-farm.net

Spirit Message of the Day – Manifest Truth


reedmonthtreeThe leaves fall patiently
Nothing remembers or grieves
The river takes to the sea
The yellow drift of leaves.
–Sara Teasdale

On October 28th, according to the Celtic Tree calendar, we entered the month of The Reed.

The Celtic Tree Year is divided into thirteen lunar months. Each has a tree (or in this case, a shrub) specific to it, as well as an astrological inference. Because lunar years quickly get out of synch with the Gregorian solar calendar, modern practitioners often assign fixed dates to these months.

Some scholars dispute any actual existence of this Ogham-based Celtic tree calendar, which was popularized by Robert Graves. However, many modern Witches and Pagans have adopted its ideas, for there is great value in measuring time in harmony with the Moon’s feminine cycles.

The Reed, called Ngetal by the Celts (“nyettle”), is identified with the submerged or hidden dryad, and can be thought of as the hidden roots of all life. Reed represents the turning within that we must undergo to nurture our spirits. The Reed is associated with the mysteries of death, and it is no accident that its month is when we observe Samhain. For now is the time when the boundaries part between the beloved dead and the living of this world.

Reed plantTherefore, the Reed Month is most favorable for communication with ancestral spirits and the strengthening of all family ties. Its magickal associations are with fertility, love, protection, and family concerns. Like this astrological time of Scorpio, it is ruled by Pluto.

Samhain is the final harvest, and The Reed reminds us that Winter is approaching. It is a month of turning our energies toward hearth and home. The Reed symbolizes family, fidelity and trust.

Traditionally, reeds are burned to honor the household spirits and a family’s patron deity. In fact, in ancient Scotland, a broken reed was an omen of familial betrayal. You might wish to place reeds throughout your home, especially in the kitchen, to bring blessings of unity to your family.

The time of The Reed is a time of Fate and Destiny. It is associated with the hero of the Mabinogion, Pwyll (“pooeel”), who trades places with the Lord of the Underworld, Arawen (corresponding to Pluto). So this is the time of deep prophecy, communication with spirits, and the ability to face our shadow.

The Reed month is an especially good time to honor The Morrigan, Hecate, Rhiannon, and The Cailleach. The Celtic month of The Reed ends November 24.

–Excerpt taken from http://www.owlsdaughter.com


12th Moon of the Celtic Year – October 28th-November 24th)

Latin name: Latin name: American Elm – ulmus americana; European Elm – ulmus procera; slippreed snowery Elm – ulmus fulva.

Celtic name: Negetal (pronounced: nyettle).

Folk or Common names: In Britain where the Reed tree is the dwarf elm, it is called the Water-Elder, Whitten, or rose Petal. Since I use the immature Elm tree in place of the Reed tree, the Elm is usually known as Elm, and sometimes Piss-Elm (due to the smell it makes while being burned as a green wood).

Parts Used: Bark, leaves, wood.

Herbal usage: The Elm has many medicinal uses. Slippery Elm bark can be powdered and made into a milk for babied that can’t tolerate cow’s milk. In fact slippery Elm bark is good for many purposes. In tea it can ease insomnia and sooth an upset tummy. It is also useful for enemas and makes good poultice material. This type of poultice can be used on wounds, infections, ulcers, burns, and poison ivy.

Reed_Mace-BullrushMagical History & Associations: The birds associated with the month of Reed are the owl and goose, the color is grass green, and the gemstone is clear green jasper. Symbols of this Celtic month are The White Hound, The Stone, the Planet Pluto (Pwyll), The Fire Feast of Samhain Dis, Pwyll, and Arawn. Identified with the submerged or hidden dryad, The Month of Reed represents the mysteries of death. In fact the Fire Feast of Samhain celebrates the dead and on Samhain, the boundary between the Otherworld and this world dissolve. It is a night of great divination. Or in another fashion, it represents the hidden roots to all life.

The Month of Reed is associated with being both a savior and custodian. Pwyll, the Celtic ruler of the Otherworld was given “The Stone” , one of four treasures given to him for safekeeping. The Stone represents the right of the kings and queen to have divine power. Thus the Reed is also the symbol of Royalty. The White Hounds represent the dogs that guard the lunar mysteries. The Elm tree is a tree of Saturn and is associated with the element of earth. It is sacred to Odin, Hoenin and Lodr. The elm is also associated with the day of Tuesday.

reed 1Magickal usage: The month of Elm / Reed is a good month for using music in magick, especially music made by bagpipes and flutes, and also for doing divination. Elm is sometimes said to symbolize the dark side of the psyche and so can be used in psychic workings. The Elm is commonly known as “the elf friend”. If you desire to have contact with wood elves, pick a grove of Elm trees and sit under them and sing. Around about dawn, the elves will have gotten over their initial shyness and come out to join in the singing. Elm trees are also thought to provide a channel for the communication with divas. To get an Elm tree to help you in this quest, offerings can be brought to a favorite tree and left. The best offerings are wine, mead, tobacco, coins and sage.

Tiny twigs of Elm can be worn in a bag around a child’s neck as a charm to produce eloquent speech in later life. Elm wood may be bound with a yellow cord and burned to prevent gossip. The Elm represents primordial female powers and therefore the Elm is a tree with great protective qualities. The wood from the Elm can be made into talismans and charms that can be worn for protection. The Elm also has the qualities of regeneration, boldness and fidelity, and so added to its protective qualities, it is excellent when given as a good luck token to departing friends. Using Elm is spellwork adds stability to the spell. According to Edain McCoy in her article: Willow for love, Oak for strength (97 Llewellyn Magickal Almanac) a tea can be made for the month of Reed that includes a pinch of slippery Elm.

–Excerpt taken from Celtic Tree Lore by Sarah the Swampwitch

Spirit Message of the Day – Focus, Direct Energy

“Long ago there was a boy named Wu who lived with his father and grandmother on a farm. Wu was a quiet child who would often walk to the garden gate and fall into daydreaming. One day, as he was gazing across the plain, an elegant youth in flowing yellow garments rode toward him on a brilliant white horse. As he dismounted in front of the gate, an Magician by Lisa Huntaccompanying servant held out an umbrella to shield the youth from the sun. ‘Wu, son of Yin, we are in need of rest. May we enter your father’s home?’ the youth asked.”

“Wu bowed and led the youth and his entourage through the courtyard. The visitor was greeted with refreshments and conversation. Wu sat quietly and watched as the youth and his father talked. After several hours, the visitor stood up and thanked Yin for his hospitality before returning to the gate. As the youth mounted his horse, he turned to Wu and said, ‘I will see you again soon.’ He then galloped away majestically into the haze of the setting sun.”

“Wu returned and saw a puzzled look on his father’s face. ‘How could that stranger have known my name?’ asked his father. ‘Wu, did you see anything out of the ordinary?’ ‘His clothes had no seams’ said Wu ‘and his horse had five spots and scaly skin. And the rider and his mount never touched the ground.’ Yin’s eyes grew wide, ‘We’ve been visited by spirits!’ ‘Yes father’ agreed Wu. ‘They galloped westward and rode up into large clouds gathering in the sky.'”

“Yin and Wu went to the wise Grandmother and told her what they saw. Grandmother nodded, ‘Ah yes, that was a dragon spirit. The youth wearing yellow is a great thunder dragon. Is there anything else you saw, Wu?’ Grandmother asked. ‘Yes, one of the servants held the umbrella upside down as he was leaving our garden.’ ‘This is a dragonshipgood sign’, said Grandmother assuredly, the dragon is to unleash a great storm, and perhaps we will be spared harm.’ Grandmother then retired to bed. Just then a great howl pierced through the thickening air. Yin and Wu decided to stay awake as an ominous gale whooshed nearby. The storm grew fiercer as rivers spilled over their banks and inundated the villages with lethal force.”

“‘We should have escaped to the safety of the mountain while we had the chance,’ lamented his father. Wu looked out the window and saw a dragon flying over their house. ‘Look father,’ Wu cried, ‘I see the dragon!’ As they peered up at the sky, they noticed that the torrential rain could be seen all around the perimeter of their farm, but none of the raindrops hit their roof. The dragon was protecting them with its great hood. At last, the storm subsided, and the villagers grieved their looses. The only home unscathed was that of the farmer Yin. The next day, the youth returned, only this time he didragon-artd not pass through the gate.”

“He plucked a scale from the horse’s neck and handed it to Wu. ‘I’ve returned as I said I would. Keep this scale, and do not forget me.’ Wu nodded and placed the scale in a wooden box and showed it to his grandmother. ‘It won’t be long until the emperor sends for you.’ she observed wisely. And Grandmother was right. Word of the miraculous events surrounding the devastating storm reached the ears of the emperor. Wu was accompanied to the palace by the emperor’s courtiers. There, he told the emperor of his exchanges with the yellow thunder dragon. He took out his wooden box, lifted the lid, and illuminated the room with the brilliant dragon scale. The emperor, feeling that the dragon had endowed the boy with special powers, designated him as the palace magician. As magician, the boy made accurate predictions for years and helped keep everyone safer in the kingdom. He lived a happy life and never forgot the youth-dragon who had given dragon-art-04him a special gift.”

“The contents of the golden box are the key to accessing hidden powers. The dragons in the air reflect mental strength and potentiality; they are knowledgeable creatures and can serve as guides and teachers. The luminescence sweeping out of the box mimics cosmic energy reminding us that the use of magic requires discipline and focus. The boy wears an orange shirt, representing fire and enthusiasm, both attributes that will serve him well on his quest for knowledge.”

“Start building your visionary powers as a means of influencing potential energies. You have the opportunity to start tapping into inner resources that will enable you to travel deeper into the realm of unconscious  mysteries.”

Today’s message is from The Fairy Tale Tarot by Lisa Hunt.

Spirit Message of the Day – Approach With Innocence

Little Red Riding Hood
“The Fool represents inexperience, innocence, and spontaneity.”

Little Red Riding Hood by Lisa HuntONCE UPON A TIME…
“There was a girl named Little Red Riding Hood. She had to take a basket of goodies across the forest to her ailing grandmother. Her mother wrapped Little Red Riding Hood in her hooded cape and warned: ‘Remember, do not stray from the path. Go directly to Grandma’s house’. As little Red Riding Hood was walking through the forest, out jumped a wolf from behind a gnarly tree. Little Red Riding Hood was not frightened in the least, because the crafty beast spoke kindly to her.”

“‘Where are you going?’ insquired the wolf.
‘Hello, wolf, I’m going to Grandma’s house’, she answerd glibly.
‘Humm…and where does she live?’ asked the wolf with a sparkle in his eye.
‘It’s through the forest and directly over the hill.’ pointed Little Red Riding Hood
‘Why don’t you pink Grandma some flowers?’ suggested the wolf.

Little Red Riding Hood looked at the beautiful flowers that spread across the forest floor. She skipped off the path to gather them. Meanwhile, the wily wolf ran to Grandma’s house and knocked on her door. He disguised his voice as Little Red Riding Hoodred riding hood and wolf‘s and tricked the old woman into letting him in. The wolf tiptoed inside and sprang onto the unsuspecting grandmother. He gobbled her up with one swallow. Then he put on a cap and gown that he found by the bedpost. When Little Red Riding Hood finally arrived with a bountiful bouquet, the wolf cleared his throat and told her, ‘Come in, child. I’ve been waiting for you.’ Little Red Riding Hood thought her grandmother sounded strange, and when she saw her, she thought she looked strange too. Perhaps it is her illness she thought.”

‘Grandmother, what big ears you have.’
‘The better to hear you with , my dear.’
‘Grandmother, what big eyes you have.’
‘The better to see you with.’
‘Grandmother, what big arms you have.’
‘The better the see you with.’
‘Grandmother, what big teeth you have!’
‘The better to eat you with!’

red-riding-hood drawing“And before Little Red Riding Hood had time to gasp, the wolf had devoured her and smacked his lips with delight. Now, after a heavy meal like that, the wolf grew sleepy and fell into a deep snooze. A huntsman who happened to be passing by heard loud snoring and decided to see if the ill woman was okay. When he came into the house, he saw the swollen-bellied wolf lying on the bed. The hunter, guessing that he had made a meal out of Grandma, took scissors and cut the wolf’s belly open. There he found Red and her grandmother, frightened but alive. Little Red Riding Hood quickly gathered rocks from the yard and refilled the wolf’s belly with them. When the wolf started to rouse, he tried to get up but teetered back and forth because of his rock filled belly.”

“Little Red Riding Hood represents the unrealized self, her red cape symbolizing potential vitality. She has stepped out from the safety of the womb (home), so to speak, and has ventured down a path where her animal nature awaits. The wolf is this animal, the shadow initiating the awakening of the ego. It embodies our wild, untamed nature and the drives that are imbedded in the psyche. By encountering the wolf, she has begun to connect with her own animal spirit, thus expanding consciousness and mental vivacity. But she must exercise caution in the presence of such a powerful force. The forest of gnarly trees symbolizes ancient wisdom. They line the pathways with knowing amusemenred_riding_hood sepiat. The faces are aspects of our collective unconscious, holders of past experiences. The ferns grow wild and serve to distract the traveler from the task at hand. The flowers signify innermost desires. Little Red Riding Hood’s braids embody innocence, naivety, and restrictive thinking. The brown leaves on the trail represent the eternal cycle of life. The red mushrooms remind us of the magical opportunities that lie ahead.”

“When we first travel down the path of life, we tend to be naive and perhaps unaware of the dark forces that may lurk in the shadows. At this stage, you are wandering into the unknown, relying more on impulse than decisive action. Your adventurous spirit will help you cross into thresholds of new possibilities, but be aware of tricksters that may cross your path along the way.”

Today’s guidance comes from The Fairy Tale Tarot by Lisa Hunt.