In the last third of 2016 I took a bit of a break from writing and significantly reduced my work here at Wandering Woman Wondering and at Wayfaring Woman (my column on the Agora at Patheos). I’ve included links below to the articles that I did not previously link here. Some of them are updates and revisions to work that I previously presented here on Wandering Woman Wondering, and some are new.
At this time of year (and during Mercury Retrograde cycles) I often find myself reviewing old journal entries and taking stock of what the Powers shared with me in earlier times. In my readings today I encountered a few reflections from August 2012 on an encounter with Mercurius. The journal entry reads:
I began the ritual by purifying myself with castile soap and florida water. I then cleansed the space with Sage leaves. I lit the hearth candle, prayed to Vesta, and then invoked Mercury using a combination of ancient prayers from Horace and Ovid. Mercury filled the space. At that time I made offerings of Zeylon Cinnnamon, Mercury Incense from Alchemy Works, Mercury & Shower of Gold oils from Beads n Botanicals (a local Pagan shop), as well as Mercury stick incense from Beads n Botanicals. I also gave him a glass of beer. After offerings I slipped into trance unexpectedly.
He nearly shouted: “I am a living, breathing god. The spirit of this world. I am in sight, and sound, and sense. Come to my temple with incense and I will tell you more.”
By “spirit of this world” I gathered that he meant to align himself with the essence of civilization and of the relational economy of this planet’s living breathing beings.
I put more incense on the charcoal. I commented that I was not expecting him to be an “ecstatic/mystical experience kind of god”. He said, “Expectation is for the dim witted.” Openness is what I truly need. Expectation narrows the field of vision.
Mercury went on. He communicated the importance of sensing and making sense of experiences with the entire body. Our logical minds receive input from a host of human senses and the output of our logical minds is applied via a host of human senses. Nothing functions within a vacuum. I had been relegating Mercury to the airy realms of mind and logic and cold calculated distance but in reality, he is one of many lords of the senses and relatedly of perception. And so he is one of the many lords of the world. He sees the patterns but he sees with more than just his eyes from a distance. He touches this world! He smells it and tastes it and hears it too! Then he laughs and jets off to the next experience.
Near the close of our conversation he breathed upon me and I was entirely within my body. There was no other time, no other place, no other moment. Only me. Only here. Only now. I nearly passed out. And then he was gone.
Over at the Society of Diana there is a very cool blog post about Mercury’s presence at Grand Central Station. I thought I would post a comment on it here on my blog since I am having technical difficulties with Blogspot commenting right now (sorry). In a nutshell, I really agree with the author that our gods are all around and magic is afoot in the world. Also, the author makes an excellent point that not all representations of Mercury are created equal. If he is not being backgrounded to one or more of the other gods, he is being represented in a somehow muted fashion…but not at Grand Central Station; there, he is big, bold, and powerful the Lord of Exchange in its many forms.
Mercury Clock, photo by Marie Sobrito
For that very reason, when I am in NYC on business or visiting friends, I always try to stop by Grand Central Station to stare up at him in all his splendor. I have pictures from one of my trips tucked away somewhere, taken before I went digital…when I was still restricted to film *gasp*. I hope to take some digital photos the next time I am in NYC so that I can use one of them on my altar and then post one or two of them here.