Wednesday, March 30, 2011
The history and making of the staghorn amulet
The story of this amulet starts many years ago, back in 2002, before I was even a pagan. I was living with my now ex-wife in Oregon. In 2001 I had taken up bow hunting, and after a year of practice I felt ready to try and take my first deer. I had been watching an alfalfa field for many weeks that year. I had gotten to know each deer, I even know in what order they would appear from the forest into the field in the morning. I had set up my blind at the edge of the field and I waited. Just as I had come to expect they appeared and by 10:30 AM I had arrowed on old white muzzled buck from 30 yards. He didn't make it 80 yards and the kill was as quick and clean as any could hope for. Now, I am no trophy hunter. Never have been, never will be. This deer was processed to the full extent of my skill and kept my family fed for many meals. Years later I divorced my wife, became pagan, and moved to central Cal. I was rummaging through some things a few years later and found the only thing I had left from that old deer, a tip of his antler that I had saved back then for some unknown reason. When I found it again I saw the perfect amulet for me. Having learned the principles of scrimshaw, I carved in the antler 4 runes. Power, victory, protection and the like. I then used paint to fill in the carving with black, and wiped off the excess. I then used a clear sealant to keep it from wearing away. With a hole drilled through it and placed on a leather thong with some other wooden beads the amulets physical construction was complete.
One of the reasons that this antler was so fitting for me as an amulet, besides that it came from a deer I killed myself, but that at this time the spirit of the stag had become a spirit guide to me (on a side note, I have never killed a deer since finding stag as a spirit guide, not that I haven't tried. ;)). I then did some magic on the amulet and put it on. I had worn it for about two years without taking it off till recently. I had to take it off during my training as a CNA. When working with people suffering from Dementia, some of them have a tendency to grab things, and they can be very strong. Here is how I plan to re-enchant it:
I will set up my three hallows in my Nemeton. I will set up a table on which I will have my offerings to the kindreds, tools I might need in the rite, such as a wand, divination tools, in this case my Ogham, the amulet to be blessed, and a chalice.
When all is in readiness I begin with the two powers mediation. This helps balance me and gets my energies flowing. When I am ready I begin with my opening prayers. Some thing along the lines of "A child of the earth has come to honor the powers, and work the ways of the druids. I am come to the fire and well to make an amulet of power and protection that is active when ever the loop of the clasp is completed."
I will then bless the fire, well, and sacred tree. I will cleanse the sacred space with water and fire. I will make offering to the earth mother. Then I will open the gate between this world and the spirit world. I will then invite the mighty dead, land spirits, and gods to my fire, making good offerings to each group. In that processes I will make it known my intention to create an amulet and ask for their aid in doing so. Some thing like "Oh ancient ancestors, remember me as I remember you. Grandfathers! Grandmothers! I have not forgotten you. Lend me your wisdom. All you mighty dead, I honor you with this sacrifice. Lend your power to the creation of this amulet. Through it may you empower and protect, may all all harm, mundane or magickal, by land, sea or sky, be turned away."
I will use similar invocations to the land spirits and Gods, with special focus on calling to my spirit guide the stag and Lugh my patron deity.
Once offerings are done, I'd do an take an omen to be sure that they are pleased with the offerings and the working and that I have in fact their aid in the working. If it is positive, I then will place the amulet in the chalice and ask them to "pour" their blessings into it and into the the amulet. At this point I go by feel. When I feel the blessings are done, I place the chalice between the well, fire, and tree. I then draw the two powers into me and then project it into the cup with the amulet to empower it further. I keep the intention of what I want the amulet to do firmly in my mind. When I have done all I can without loosing my focus, I pick up the amulet gently tap it and say "awaken unto life!". I then put the amulet on. Thus the working is done, and I close in the usual way.
So there you have it. This is how I will re-enchant the amulet that has come to mean so much to me. I hated having to break it in the first place, but some times we have to make sacrifices for our greater gain. One other thing about this amulet I find interesting, is that in all the years that I wore it, no one has ever asked about it. Not a word. It was almost as if they never saw it.
I hope to perform the working this weekend.