“Befana’s themes are overcoming evil and wisdom. Her symbols are brooms, horns and hag poppets.  Befana is the Italian crone Goddess. Call on her for wisdom and guidance through the other eleven months of the year. Because she has lived a long life, her astute insight will serve you well. Today is her festival day in Italy, celebrated with horns, noise makers, songs and music. These loud sounds drive out evil and mark the passage of winter’s darkness of the region. Have any children in your life follow the Italian tradition of leaving Befana a broom to fly on and a gift basket. According to legend, Befana rewards this kindness with little gifts in stockings, much like Santa Claus.

Find a ‘kitchen witch’ at a gift shop and hang it up near the hearth to welcome Befana’s wisdom into your home. Or, take a broom clockwise around your home, sweeping inward toward a central spot to gather her beneficent energies.

To protect your home for the rest of the year, use a kazoo or other noise maker (pots with wooden spoons work well). Go into each room and make a loud racket, saying something like this:
‘All evil, fear ! Befana is here!
Away, away, only goodness may stay.’

If your schedule allows, make a poppet that looks like an old woman. Fill it with dried garlic, pearl onions and any other herbs you associate with safety. Keep this near the stove or hearth to invoke Befana’s protection.”

(Patricia Telesco, “365 Goddess: a daily guide to the magic and inspiration of the goddess”.)

Suggested Links:

Dragonfly, Talitha. Witchvox.com, “La Befana“.

Richter, Athmey M. Sacredmistsblog.com, “Witches of Antiquity: Befana, the Santa Claus Witch of Epiphany“.

Wikipedia, “Befana“.

 

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