The online version of our seasonal Tree of Life Cycles newsletter for Deep Roots 2020.
Deep Roots | Samhain | All Saints| Sigd
(Click here to read about the names we chose for the annual cycle of traditional festivals throughout the year, and why we chose them).
The most important news this time is that this edition of Tree of Life Cycles will be the LAST ONE to be emailed to you. Instead, from Yule onwards (21 December) I will send you notifications by email when the Newsletter is available on my NEW WEBSITE. The new website will be launched before then on 20 November — so only a few days to go!!
The content will be broadly the same, except we’re replacing our regular Angel article with a new series of seasonal articles called Celebration Ring for children and the grown-ups in their orbit – grandparents, mums and dads, etc. (See below for the first one).
Meanwhile, click below to watch my Deep Roots video now.
Deep Roots – Third Cross-Quarter
DEATH: RETRIBUTION: ATONEMENT: REMEMBRANCE
Many religious and secular festivals at this time of year echo the same archetypal message – now we venture into the deeper realms of consciousness in order to meet the shadows. We remember our dead ancestors. We remember war victims. We remember our old victories and failures. We burn away the dead wood. We watch the smoke rise to the sky and disperse into the night.
The image of Deep Roots describes how we can descend, embrace the silence and the darkness, and know this is where we find hidden treasures. We visit the lands of the dead in order to return with wisdom.
Around this time, the Jewish Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement) reminds people of their spiritual obligation to forgive and forget, while at the same time remembering important obligations. The Mexican Day of the Dead celebrates the ancestors. In Britain and many other European countries, we hold a Day of Remembrance for those who died in two of the twentieth-century’s biggest wars. All Hallow’s Eve acknowledges the presence of invisible spirits and ghosts of the past. All Saints Day is an opportunity to keep communion with Christian saints. Wherever you are in the world, this is a time of looking back and remembering.
In our personal lives, Deep Roots symbolises our capacity to delve into the underworld of our consciousness and face up to our shadows and demons. Unless we meet our personal demons and acknowledge and release them, we cannot possibly move into the light and work with our angels. We need to be kind to the demons because they carry our suffering and pain. We cannot slay them with sword or spear. We must feed them with the honey and milk of kindness. Walking through the darkness, trusting there is a path under our feet, knowing we can feed the demons and being certain there is a light at the end of the tunnel – this is our personal spiritual challenge.
A new series of seasonal ideas for young children and grown-ups alike
Our youngest daughter, Gudrun – mother to our youngest granddaughter – recently introduced us to ‘celebration rings’, after which this new series of articles is named. Here you can see a photo of her ring being used for her Samhain celebration, which is the equivalent of Deep Roots:
It’s designed to be a focus when celebrating birthdays, family occasions, Yule and other religious or cultural events. It has holes in it for you to slot in candles and colourful numbers, letters, and other little figurines. So each season you can put in things that are relevant to the special event, as well as add other items, such as leaves or pine cones – whatever seems appropriate. It can be used as an excuse to take the children out for a walk to gather bits and pieces, or involve them in making it look splendid. Once it’s made, it can be used as a discussion point for your family, or simply a table decoration at a celebration meal. This would be such a lovely gift at Yuletide!
Click here to see rings in a variety of different sizes and colours, and elsewhere on the site for things to slot into the holes, such as candle-holders, figures, etc.
Gudrun was brought up with the seasonal celebrations as part of our family and social life. Our friends would bring food for a pot-luck feast, and we would all share songs, poems and prayers. Usually we would have a bonfire to gather round. Before becoming a mother, working as a music events organiser in London, Gudrun always encouraged her team and the followers at the club where she worked – Passing Clouds – to create special nights for the same seasonal markers. Now she is introducing her daughter to the cycle of the year, using the celebration ring as a focus.
Even if the children in your family are at a distance, you could make sure they have a celebration ring in their home, you could give them one and help them top up with different decorations when special events come up.
By the way, we don’t receive any financial advantage for promoting this product. I genuinely think it is really brilliant and a great way to introduce your children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren to a spiritual perspective that includes Nature.
Rituals for grown-ups and children
Although we don’t want very young children to focus too much on death, dying, ghosts and spirits, we do know that they become aware of these matters early. An elderly grandparent may die and a toddler who had been happy to sit on their knee will wonder why this loving person is missing. One way or another, they will notice and its very useful to find ways to prepare them before any kind of event arises. By creating the seasonal rituals, with little songs and celebrations for the winter each year, you can encourage your children, grand children or great grandchildren to observe the cycle of life. They can get to see Nature’s process of growth, blossom and gradual decay and then they will begin to understand how this process applies to all life – to the family pets, and to people in their circle.
Will has offered this little rhyme as a suggestion for talking to young children about ancestry and lineage. ‘Mummy’ and ‘Daddy’ can of course always be changed to ‘Mama’ and ‘Papa or ‘Mother’ and ‘Father’ or whatever words are used in your family. If you have the opportunity, you might like to try it out with children in your circle. We are on a mission to create short prayers and poems for all eight seasonal celebrations, for bedtime and special occasions, and we would be delighted to hear your feedback!
You have got a mummy
Who has a mummy too
And mummy’s mummy has a mummy
They’re all part of you!
And you have got a daddy
Who has a daddy too
And daddy’s daddy has a daddy
They’re all part of you!
Thank you darling mummy
And thank you daddy dear
And thank you everyone for all the
Love that brings you here.
Copyright © 2020 Will Shaman
The new website will launch on 20 November 2020. I’ll be reminding you closer to the date and keeping you abreast of Special Offers coming down the line. It’s all looking very exciting!
I’m busy creating lots more YouTube content. Apart from my Tree of Life Cycles videos, there are two new series – Mystical Wisdom and Signs & Wonders, which I told you about last time. Make sure you subscribe on my channel as I’m planning to put new videos up several times a week and I’m sure you’ll find them interesting.
When we open the new website later this month, you will notice I am no longer offering astrology readings in the Shop. This is because I need to allocate most of my advisory time to students following courses. However, if you have been a client in the past, perhaps someone who used to ask for an annual update, on your birthday, or in January for The Year Ahead, I will still be happy to set up an appointment for you. Please email me if you want to book ahead for January 2021 and I’ll send you a PayPal link. A one-hour consultation will be £95.
I will also provide a free astrological session for all students enrolling on the supervised version of my new Gateway Course, Grounding Your Life Purpose when the website goes live.
We can all expect some big shifts in the collective welfare of humanity after the major conjunction of Saturn and Jupiter in Aquarius, at Yule (Winter Solstice). This won’t automatically be for the better, but it will move us on and give us potentially exciting and innovative options. Especially as these two giants will square to Uranus in Taurus. In May, Jupiter will be more beneficial for people on a spiritual path after this god moves into Pisces. Yes, BIG changes ahead! It will depend on your birth chart what areas of your life will be affected. Email me if you would like a Year Ahead reading.
Enola Holmes – Directed by Harry Bradbeer (2020). Starring Millie Bobbie Brown, Helena Bonham Carter, Sam Claflin and Henry Cavill.
This is one of those films that has it all. It’s smart. It’s funny. It has genuinely touching moments that are not schmaltzy. The production is faultless, reconstructing late Victorian England authentically, from the grand hall and gardens, right down to London’s grimy docklands. Jack Thorne’s screenplay is remarkable for its wit, insight and enlightened worldview, while Daniel Pemberton’s score drives the film with energy and panache. All of this is illuminated by the remarkable talent of sixteen-year old Millie Bobbie Brown, who plays the title role, while also co-producing the film. Her frequent asides to us, the audience, make it all the more enjoyable and we are invested in her story. The premise is also brilliant and makes me want to read the series of books by Nancy Springer, who created this likeable character. Basically, Enola (‘Alone’ backwards) is the young sister of Sherlock and Mycroft Holmes. They are much older and have left home to become the famous characters we already know, leaving Enola at home with their mother Eudoria (Helena Bonham Carter) who makes her read every book in the library and teaches her everything from ju-jitsu to chess. Unsurprisingly, Enola is a highly unusual and precocious sixteen-year old (rather like Millie Bobbie herself!) When Eudoria disappears and the brothers return to the family home, stern Mycroft wants to send Enola off to a horrible finishing school – not at all suitable for this independent girl. But Enola escapes in order to find her mother, using clues she has left behind. The resulting mystery, which our plucky heroine disentangles fantastically, reveals Sherlock to be perhaps only the second best detective in literature. As is so often the case these days, the film ends with the possibility of at least one sequel and, as there are more books waiting for adaptation, more will surely come. I for one can’t wait! Because of Covid and the closure of cinemas, the original distributors, Warner Brothers, sold it to Netflix. However, if you aren’t currently subscribed, they often hand out free 30-day trials, but in my opinion, this movie alone is worth a month’s subscription. Watch it! – Will Shaman.
The Man Who Could Fly: St. Joseph of Copertino and the Mystery of Levitation by Michael Grosso – Rowman & Littlefield Publishers (December 2015). Get it on Hive here (we are not affiliates).
I’m very engrossed in the fascinating story of a little known Italian saint, Joseph of Copertino. He was born into a working-class family in 1603, then became an ordained priest of the Catholic Church. After several years of ill-health, which kept him bed-ridden, he focussed all his attention on religious life. Very early during his spiritual training, he displayed paranormal powers and these became more marked after he was ordained in 1628, when he became famous for public levitations. The Church – you might be surprised – wasn’t happy with him! Clearly he had strange powers, but where were they coming from?
Like the more recent saint, Padre Pio (1887–1968), who displayed signs of the ‘stigmata’ (the wounds of Christ), Joseph attracted a cult following. The Church always regard these charismatic mystics as dangerous. There are rumours that the Church was willing to assassinate Padre Pio, in order to suppress the popular movement of people who followed him, sometimes reneging on their duty to the Church. Joseph was tried by the Inquisition and was confined in a monastery for the latter part of his life, where only the monks would witness his powers.
This whole story brings up the very fundamental issue that we Westerners have been wrestling with for many generations – how do mind and body, or soul and body, interact? The author, Michael Grosso, points out that Western scholarship follows the philosophical view of the so-called Empiricists. In other words, miracles must be impossible, because they are scientifically unverifiable. But ‘miracles are impossible’ is as much a belief as the spiritual belief that says miracles are possible. Western culture in our present time prefers miracles not to be on the table. Why? If people begin to believe humans can have ‘powers’, they would be much more difficult to control! Best to let everyone think their agency depends on education, career and a democratic system in which, when they are grown-up, they can cast a vote. Perhaps this is why funding for academic scholarship favours the mainstream mantra – ‘miracles can’t happen!’ But the story of Joseph is well documented. Levitation can happen.
Bury the Seed: Poems for Releasing More Life into You by Brooke J McNamara – Performance Integral (February 2020). Get it on Hive here, cheaper than Amazon (we are not affiliates).
My eldest daughter has been following this inspiring American poet and recently gave me a copy of Brooke McNamara’s collection, with its beautiful cover. The poems inside are equally stunning. The opening testimonials say everything, so here are a few to tempt you in:This is feminine wisdom at its most luminous…
Every once in a while a prophet appears in the form of a poet…
Her poems remind us of our birth right, to notice in each moment the aching truth of what it is to be a human being…
She is calling us to remember the radiant glory that is our own eternal soul.
These poems change us.
She embraces and invites us towards the immanent in all its mystery.
Her poems are meditative…perfect for glimpsing the mystery of life.
Brooke’s poems weave fire into fabric and spirit into matter.
Edgy, elegant, simple, sacred.
If you love poetry that speaks both to the mystical and the everyday reality of family, domesticity and sleeping babies, this is a book for you.
How to Thrive in the Battle of Life by The Academy of Ideas. Click here to watch (less than 12 minutes).
I came across this short YouTube video recently and, you might be surprised to learn, I was actually attracted by the title. Maybe this is because my Sun sign is Aries! Also, for everyone Mars is presently in its own home sign of Aries and about to go direct, having been retrograde for a few weeks. I can imagine the soldier in everyone is polishing their armour!
I was brought up in a pacifist household and learned at an early age that peaceful resolutions to conflicts are definitely the best way forward – much less messy. However, it is true that the yang-yin energies in the life-force seem to face us with challenges that can best be described as ‘battles’. People talk about a ‘battle against cancer’, another expression is ‘battling with your inner demons’. Right now there is a ‘battle’ going on for the Presidency in the United States.
Although you may find the voice over a bit of a monotone and they use the expression ‘discovered self’, rather than ‘Soul’, the message echoes my own. Everyone needs to discover their own purpose in life, then, whatever slings and arrows are flying around in the social world, you will see your own pathway ahead and adapt where necessary. Good food for thought.
Look out for our wonderful new website later this month. I’ll let you know when we launch. And meanwhile… keep shining!