I am so excited. My small Mani devotional 'Dancing in the House of the Moon" is almost ready to send to editing and formatting. I have six prayer-poems and a forward outstanding, most of which I intend to write today.
I've wanted to do a specifically Mani themed devotional for years (as opposed to "Day Star and Whirling Wheel" which was for HIs entire family).
This devotional will be small and if i have my way, pocket size. I've always wanted to do a pocket sized book. I do incorporate a handful f prayers and one ritual from "Day Star...." but most of the material is new, drawn from stuff I"ve written for or about Him over the last two years.
The devotional is nebulous, really word-pictures designed to summon a sense of Him and His presence, to incite a desire to seek Him out, to prompt one's own practice. I worried about that, that it might be too insubstantial to print, but my editor pointed out that He is insubstantial and quixotic and that every single piece I'd read to him thus far reflected Mani beautifully and that is what a devotional should do. So, if all goes as planned, and I get off my butt and finish up, this devotional should be available in two weeks or so. woo. I do love Mani so. (the image here, btw, is by Lynn Perkins. She made it as a prayer card but graciously allowed me to use it as the cover image for "Dancing in the House of the Moon" too. Thank you, Lynn).
I'm very proud of the books that Sanngetall press has published so far. I have an amazing editorial team and an amazing graphics designer and it's all really taken the pain out of publishing. I've been very, very happy with my other publishers and have no issue whatsoever with contributing to them again, but there's a special satisfaction in having my own imprint.
So far, I have put out three books through them: "He is Frenzy," "Transgressing Faith," (this was actually my MA thesis) and "Consuming Flame." This small offering to Mani will be the fourth.
My next two projects after this include a devotional to Charon for Bibliotheca Alexandrina (please, folks, if you have essays and articles, don't be shy about submitting for this one. I'm still seeking material) and a book on getting started with Ancestor Veneration. This latter has been long in coming so stay tuned.
I want to give a huge thank you to the folks who've recently made donations to House Sankofa. It's greatly appreciated and will be going toward offerings for Mani.
Speaking of Whom, i've just posted another article about Him (more reader Q&A) here.
have a good night, folks. It's late and the morning comes all too quickly. :)
I've got another post up at Heathen Heretic -- been in the mood to write today, folks. :)
This one is all about the moon god Mani and in it, I answer more reader questions.
Keep those questions coming! If i don't have an answer, I'll do my best to refer you to someone who does.
In the meantime, the photo here is by noted Hudson Valley photographer Mary Ann Glass. (Yes, it's used with permission). Check out her work, folks. It's ethereal and elegant.
My newest Heathen Heretic column is available here. It's all about the Norse Moon God Mani and is the first of a multi-part series.
(This image is by Grace Palmer and may be purchased as a prayer or devotional card. Check this and the other prayer cards I have available out here).
Many of you who read this blog know that I do monthly oracle sessions with and for Odin. I have been given ...i'm not sure if i should say 'leave' or 'an assignment' to offer the same for Mani no more than four times a year. The first of those Mani oracle sessions will be at Etinmoot.
Since I am scheduled to carry Mani anyway, it seems a logical time to have an assistant present people's questions to Him. If anyone would like to send in questions for the Mani oracle session, please have them to me by no later (and i *mean* no later) than 9pm August 14, 2013. I will have one of my assistants put the questions to Mani whilst I am carrying Him and record whatever response He gives.
There is no charge for oracle work (though unlike personal divination there's also no explication of the answers given) however should anyone wish to make a donation to the House that would be greatly appreciated. It will be used for offerings for Mani in August.
Contact me at krasskova at gmail.com with any questions.
(Photo by Mary Ann Glass).
I am currently working on an article about Mani for my next Witches and Pagans column. I love our moon God and find Him extraordinary and a delight to honor. I wish that there were more people celebrating Him and I wish that there were more written about Him! :)
So I figured I would do with Mani what I did with Odin a month or two ago: open things up to questions from my readers.
I love Mani dearly and I've honored Him for years and years. I maintain a shrine and an altar to Him, venerate Him in House rituals several times a year, will soon oracle for Him, and carry Him via possession at least once a year. I've written a devotional for Him and really, really want to do another in the near future. Over the past few years I've had the pleasure of seeing His cultus expand as more and more people fall in love with the Moon.
So, post your questions here or send them to me at krasskova at gmail.com (or tamyris at earthlink.net though gmail is somewhat more reliable) and I will happily answer them either in this article that I'm working on now, or in upcoming posts.
I'll answer them to the best of my ability from both available scholarship and my personal experience and if i don't know the answer, i'll say so and try to suggest where you might go to find what you need.
I will be posting a more thorough account of this weekend's House event a little later but I wanted to gush about Mani for a moment. If one can have a God-crush, I so truly do for our God of the moon. He is a seductive, luminous, intoxicating presence.
Mani is not only well-loved in our House, but we have a House member dedicated to Him. Over the past couple of months, in part because of this latter situation, I've been getting more and more of a push to expand Mani's altar. Now up until yesterday, He had a small altar in my guest room, shared with Sunna, Sinthgunt, and the rest of Mundilfari's House. Now, in addition to this small, shared space, He has an altar of His own in a place of prominence (you can see it in the photo here, an image kindly taken by J. Prat. The icon of Mani was painted by V.E. Hardy). L., the newest member of our House helped me find a place for this expanded altar. More will be added to it soon.
Mani was a very, very strong presence at our ritual yesterday. He honored us with His presence enfleshed, i.e. via deity possession. I'll write more about that in the write-up that I'm preparing but one thing I want to note now, lest I forget. One of the blessings of doing this type of work is that as the deity in question is coming or going from the cloak of one's flesh, as there is that brush of shared consciousnesses passing in active transition, one is occasionally graced with a deeper glimpse into the nature of the deity than is otherwise accessible. In this instance, I experienced Mani in His youth. I saw Him as a prince in Bergelmir's court, elegant, graceful, highly sought after. It was breath taking.
One of the things that my ground crew (those that assist the person carrying the Deity before and after the experience and attend the Deity when He or She is seated and present) have consistently commented on is that Mani is always courteous. Regardless of what He may be feeling, which He might share privately with His attendants, to the public at large He is always unfailingly courteous, elegant, and accessible. It is His public face, His courtly training, the education He was given as a desired prince in an ancient court.
One of my ground crew yesterday actually asked Him about it (she later told me as I was recovering), and His response was telling: There is no reason for them (meaning those gathered to see Him) to bear the brunt of of my emotions. Duty will always call. (Of course, this was relayed to me second hand, so I am paraphrasing). I'm told He said it with the sweetest of smiles and then wrapped Himself in the elegance that only the moon God carries and went forth in the flesh to attend His people.
That is all for now. I"ll leave you with this glimpse of the Moon God and the promise of more to follow.
(The artwork here is by V.E. Hardy. Used with permission).
Today is the first full moon in 2013. This is a good time to make a special offering to Mani.
Our House tends to make special offerings for the last full and new moons in December, and the first full and new moons in January. It seems significant, the crossing of the threshold of the year, and Mani is well loved in House Sankofa.
Truly, He's difficult not to love. Mani is a deeply alluring God, as the moon is alluring with all of its magic and secrets. He is possessed of a certain sweetness, gentle, and as a friend of mine said recently, a God Who transforms through fierce compassion. (Thank you, L. for this apt description!). It's a particular joy to love one's Gods, to have a bond not only of obligation but of love, devotion, and affection. It's a good thing, a grace and one that Mani is particularly deft in evoking. He is a god that fills the hearts of His devotees with joy. It is a joy to praise Him, a delight to pour out offerings and in the whirlwind that devotional work can sometimes be, that is as it should be.
Who dances in the House of the Moon.
Hail this God,
Ornament of Night,
Who watches over
Today is Mani's day. Monday actually means "moon-day" and in our tradition the moon belongs to a lovely God named Mani. Monday is His day and a good day to make offerings to Him. I try to do a little something for Him every Monday. Sometimes I forget--i'm human and I make mistakes. My mindfulness occasionally has its lapses--but I do my best to be as consistent as possible. Fortunately, even when I slip up, Monday will always come round again.
I like to give Him little things whenever i can. Usually, I make my offerings in the evening, because I like to do so when the moon is visible in the night sky. Sometimes though ,He rides high and proud, winking at us from the lightening hues wrought by His sister's passage and for me, there's a special delight in that and then I will honor Him when I rise, making my offerings with the brightening day. Offerings like this need not be enormous. I usually give Him a glass of either sambuca or, more recently, Smirnoff's marshmallow flavored vodka. He seems to like it. I spend a few moments in prayer and that's that until the next Monday. It's a stabilizing consistency to the crazy roller coaster of my life.
Some of you might find it strange that we honor a moon God and not a Goddess (our Sun Deity is a Sun Goddess as well --and Mani's sister-- to complete the juxtaposition) but we are not unique in this: Japanese and Egyptian religions also have moon Gods and if i went looking, I suspect there are a few more as well, but I'm feeling lazy today so I'll leave that research to you, my readers.. One wonders though if all the moon Gods are companions….
When my adopted mom was small she used to call the moon Luna Lunera and would watch as She (my mom of course as a small child thought the moon female) showered the earth with the blessings of her gentle light. She said her father would stand on a balcony of their home while she played in the garden --oh she must have been very small---and throw candies down and she thought they came from the moon. Maybe, in a way, they did.
I never thought about it one way or another until I encountered Mani and then I knew what it was to love the moon. He is beautiful and compelling in His ways. Even I am not immune, though it amuses many and probably Mani too should He ever catch wind of it.
January's moon is traditionally called "wolf moon" and Mani is chased by a wolf called Hati. Hati keeps Him on course in the meandering road of night. I wonder if there is a connection or if it is more that our ancestors found the wolves in the forests to howl with hunger in the frozen coldness of winter?
Today I think I shall give Him flowers, white flowers like the starkness of the moon shining over a field of ice-topped snow. For those of you who love Him too, what offerings do you usually give?
Silently You watch
lovely in the hall of Night,
tempting all the worlds.
A Jotun told me
tales of You, that long ago
Your name was Longing.
It is a fable,
his heart's wish and yet my lips
whisper too: longing.
Tonight is the last new moon of 2012 (there is also a meteor shower very late tonight/early tomorrow). That seems to me like a very good night to honor the Moon God Mani.
I love Mani dearly and I'll admit that I take any excuse to honor Him. House Sankofa pays special attention as a group to the new and full moons in Dec and Jan. because as last and first of their respective years, that seems an important turning point, or at least something that it behooves us to note with respect to Mani. While we don't hold a special House event, especially this close to Yule, I do encourage everyone in the House to honor Him in some way on this day and so, I thought I would mention it to you, my readers as well.
Mani is magnificent. He is the splendor in the evening sky. He is ancient power, contained, gentled by His own hand and the passage of eons. He is wise and playful, sensual and flirtatious, magnificent and proud. I fell in love with Him long ago and I'm hardly the only one. There is something very special about Him.
So take a few moments tonight and pour out an offering. Go out and look up into the darkness of the night and praise Him. Even when His face is hidden, He is there. Turn your hearts to Him, and allow Him to whisper His wooing wisdom....I think this God is dangerous! He woos by His mere presence, no other artifice is necessary! ^_^. There are worse things to be than besotted with the moon. Praise Him, in His darkness when He veils Himself to our sight, and in His fullness when He preens, a gleaming pearl in the black sky. Praise Him.
I've posted a brief blurb about Mani, the moon, and unexpected blessings of grace, gratitude, and connection on my Heathen Heretic column. It's a bit rambling, but check it out: