Tag Archive: christmas


Goddess Mielikki

“Mielikki’s themes are change and providence. Her symbols are bears, grain and woodland plants.  The Finnish Goddess of game, hunting and the forest, Mielikki protects our resources during the remaining cold season by keeping the pantry filled. As the Goddess of abundant grain, she also encourages the return of fertility to the earth.

Go into your kitchen and get a small handful of any grain-based cereal. Take this outside and release a pinch of it to the earth, saying something like:
‘Mielikki, see this grain and bless
return to earth in fruitfulness
Hear the prayer that fills my heart
to my home, providence impart.’

Take the remaining pinch back in the house and store it in an airtight container, symbolically preserving your resources.

Tyvendedagen means ‘twentieth day after Christmas’. In Norway, today marks off the official end of the Yule season. It’s celebrated with races, sleigh rides, and the storage of ornaments and by burning the Christmas tree to drive away winter. So, when you dismantle your Yule tree, keep a jar full of its needles handy. Burn these throughout the year to banish frosty feelings or to warm up a chilly relationship. The pine smoke, being from a woodland tree, also draws Mielikki’s attention to any pressing needs you may have.”

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

In one legend, Mielikki plays the central role in creating the first bear.  Click here to read the story.

Befana

“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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