Wednesday, December 9, 2009

KRAMPUS!

Hello Loves!
I'm totally slacking on the blog lately. I've been a busy bee though! I just finished painting my bathroom, re caulked my tub and everything! I've had this and several other projects on my "to do" list for a long time, so I want to get it all done before the New Year! Anyway, here's another re-post from last year! Again, I have many new readers that might have missed this one the first time around. Hope you are all surviving the HOLIDAZE! xo!

You better watch out, you better not cry, you better not pout I'm telling you why....I wish I knew about Krampus when I started telling my daughter Christmas tales! She could care less if I threaten her with the ol' "Santa will leave coal in your stocking" bit! But Krampus, now that's the kind of folklore we can use to keep naughty girls and boys in line! Did you know that before St. Nick employed elves to help him out, he was accompanied by the Devil? Krampus followed St. Nick around like a shadow. Good little children were rewarded with gifts and the bad ones were punished by Krampus! Sometimes Krampus will just give give you a good scare and a verbal warning! One could only hope...

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In addition to the dreaded coal in the stocking, if you were just a little naughty you might get off with a swat on the ass! Or if you deserve a more severe punishment...Krampus might really rough you up!

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But you know what happens to those really bad children!? He might throw you in his straw sack and steal you away into the forest...never to be heard from again!

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In Austria and Germany, the tradition (which may vary slightly in different parts of the country) is that the boots of good children will be filled with goodies on December 6th by St. Nicholas. Traditionally, young men dress up as the Krampus on the evening of December 5, and roam the streets with St. Nick frightening children (and adults) growling and shaking rusty chains and bells! The present day Krampus costume consists of wooden masks, sheep or goat's skin and horns. The tradition might also include slight spankings with a switch or tree branch by the Krampus, especially of young females! Meanwhile St. Nick hands out children candy, fruit and small toys! During these festivals St. Nick is accompanied by a whole gang!

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Modern day Krampus Festivals are sometimes very dangerous, especially for women. Old tales say Krampus (a horny fertility god) is quite fond of sexually harassing women and slapping them on the behind. This leads to a lot of sexual misconduct on the streets by drunken men dressed as Krampus!

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The Companion of St. Nicholas is associated with the story of Knecht Ruprecht (Saint Rupert), a wild foundling whom St. Nicholas raises from childhood. In some of the Ruprecht traditions, the children would be summoned to the door to perform tricks, such as a dance or singing a song to impress upon St. Nick and Ruprecht that they were indeed good children. Those who performed badly would be beaten soundly by Servant Ruprecht, and those who performed well were given a gift or some treats. Those who performed badly enough or had committed other misdeeds throughout the year were put into Ruprecht's sack and taken away, variously to Ruprecht’s home in the Black Forest. In other versions the children must be asleep, and would awake to find their shoes filled with either sweets, coal, or in some cases a stick. Over time, other customs developed: parents giving kids who misbehaved a stick instead of treats and saying that it was a warning from Nikolaus that "unless you improve by Christmas day, Nikolaus' black servant Ruprecht will come and beat you with the stick and you won't get any Christmas gifts." I read quite a few interesting articles about Krampus while searching the internet for images. However, most of them focused on the notion that Krampus and St. Nick eventually were merged into one character that we now recognize as Santa Claus. Santa now punishes naughty children and rewards the good ones. As you know, he has a list...and checks it twice!

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Only a few articles suggested that Krampus has pre-Christian Pagan origins. One pointed torwards the "Wilde Man" of Germanic and Slavic folklore. These tales spawned stories like the Brothers Grimm tale entitled "De Wilde Mann" and Beauty and the Beast. The Wild Man, Woodwose is connected to devilish woodland spirits like Puck and the vegetal Green Man. So I would say that notion is misleading. Others suggest a connection to the mysterious "Horned God". But there are many horned god deities, so that really needs to be defined. When Neopagans refer to the "Horned God", they could be refering to one of several different horned dieties. One such archetype represents the personification of the life force energy in animals and the wilderness, fertility, sexual virility and the Hunt. Gods like Cernunnos, Pan, Faunus, and Innus are personified as being sex crazed or shown as having a large erect phallus. Fertility, fecundity and the symbolism of the phallus all denote a connection to the rites rituals, and celebrations of Spring Equinox and Summer Solstice. (As does the aforementioned Wilde Man) So none of these references have any synchronicity with Krampus.

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In some depictions, Krampus bears an uncanny resemblance to "The Devil". The Devil is still a vague reference as he is merely a modern personification of Evil. The Devil usually refers to Lucifer and Satan of the Bible. They are commonly lumped together into one entity. They are two entirely different spiritual beings however. In Hebrew ha-Satan is "the accuser" and Satan itself means "to overcome" — the one who challenged the religious faith of humans in the books of Job and Zechariah. Abrahamic religious belief systems other than Judaism relate this term to a rebellious fallen angel, devil, minor god and idol, or as an allegory for knowledge or the enlightenment of mankind. Another aspect of the Devil points torwards the Serpent in the Garden of Eden who tempted Adam and Eve to eat from the forbidden Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil (e.g., “sexual knowing”) The Serpent in the Garden is more likely rooted in Ancient Sumerian texts and is actually Enlil (Ilu), Lord of the Air and Lord of the Command was said to have created an created an E.DIN, according to Sumerian texts.He was said to have descended from Heaven to Earth. Half brother of Enki (Ea), Lord of the Earth and Waters. The philosophy of Enki manifests and explains itself in pre-Christian Mesopotamian and Egyptian thought. Satan doesn't have any synchronicities with Krampus. So we're getting off track again here.

Let's talk about Lucifer! In Latin, the word "Lucifer", meaning "Light-Bringer" (from lux, lucis, "light", and ferre, "to bear, bring"), is a name for the "Eastern Star" or "Day Star". This usage stems from a particular interpretation, as a reference to a fallen angel, of a passage in the Bible (Isaiah 14:3-20) that speaks of someone who is given the name of "Day Star" (in Latin, Lucifer) as fallen from heaven. The same Latin word is used of the morning star in 2 Peter 1:19 and elsewhere with no relation to Satan. Lucifer is recognized by Occultists as the Father of Baphomet, and is represented as the Sabbatic Goat. Eliphas Lévi considered Baphomet to be a depiction of the absolute in symbolic form. Below is an illustration of Baphomet by Lévi. His depiction is similar to that of the Devil in early tarot cards.

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Lévi wrote: "The goat on the frontispiece carries the sign of the pentagram on the forehead, with one point at the top, a symbol of light, his two hands forming the sign of hermetism, the one pointing up to the white moon of Chesed, the other pointing down to the black one of Geburah. This sign expresses the perfect harmony of mercy with justice. His one arm is female, the other male like the ones of the androgyn of Khunrath, the attributes of which we had to unite with those of our goat because he is one and the same symbol. The flame of intelligence shining between his horns is the magic light ("Light-Bringer") of the universal balance, the image of the soul elevated above matter, as the flame, whilst being tied to matter, shines above it. The beast's head expresses the horror of the sinner, whose materially acting, solely responsible part has to bear the punishment exclusively; because the soul is insensitive according to its nature and can only suffer when it materializes. The rod standing instead of genitals symbolizes eternal life, the body covered with scales the water, the semi-circle above it the atmosphere, the feathers following above the volatile. Humanity is represented by the two breasts and the androgyn arms of this sphinx of the occult sciences." The word Baphomet is said to be an Old French corruption and misspelling of the name Mahomet (Muhammad). Christianity claims that Muhammad is a false Prophet and therefore demonizes him and the followers of Islam (Peace). The name is a combination of two Greek words (baphe and metis) and meant 'absorption into wisdom.' I could go on and on about the origins of Baphomet, and synchronicities with other gods throughout different cultures, but I'll spare you the details. I just wanted to establish that Lucifer and Baphomet are one and the same...Lords of the Underworld.

So what does all this have to do with Christmas and why is Santa hanging out with Lucifer? Let's break it down, shall we? In the Northern Hemisphere, the Winter Solstice occurs either December 21 or 22, when the sun shines directly over the tropic of Capricorn. The winter solstice marks the shortest day and the longest, night of the year. (This is reversed during Summer Solstice) Following the winter solstice, the days begin to grow longer and the nights shorter.

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Again, in the Tarot the Devil Card is associated with the sign of Capricorn. Capricornus has been recognized as a goat since Babylonian and Chaldean times. Below is Occultist Aleister Crowley's version of the Devil, he states: "He is 'The Devil' of the Book of Thoth, and His emblem is BAPHOMET, the Androgyne who is the hieroglyph of arcane perfection. He is therefore Life and Love. But moreover his letter is ayin, the Eye, so that he is Light; and his Zodiacal image is Capricornus, that leaping goat whose attribute is Liberty."

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Santa Claus/St. Nick/Father Christmas is simply the personification of Winter Solstice accompanied by his servant and messenger Krampus the Horned God! Krampus the "Horned God" represents the movement of the Sun into Capricorn. Check out this image of Santa riding in on a Goat! The Horned God heralds the begining of Winter!

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Winter Solstice is longest night of the year. (Again, after winter solstice, the days begin to grow longer and the nights shorter.) The Horned God not only heralds the beginning of Winter, but he carries the souls of the dead to the underworld. (Death here is symbolic of repressed sexual energy.) represents the of the "Dark night of the Soul" or the descent of Spirit into darkness. As the "Bringer of Light" he promises the return of the Sun (Enlightenment). The Horned Fertility God offers the secret of rebirth. Notice in Eliphas Lévi's illustration, Baphomet reveals the the caduceus or magic wand of Hermes (Mercury). His arms reveal the words "Solve" and "Coagula" In alchemy the term in Latin: SOLVE ET COAGULA means separate and join together or dissolve and coagulate (bind together)

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The caduceus is comprised of two serpents coupling on an erected phallus, fertility symbol. The rod is a symbol of transforming alchemical power. The two serpents represent Union of Opposites (Sun/Moon) The snakes together with the sprouted wings depict the caduceus having an alchemical meaning of balance of duality, the alchemical process leading to unity. Even today, the symbol is often associated with medicine. Levi called his image “the Baphomet of Mendes” (Mendes is an ancient Egyptian city) "the Lord of Mendes", who was the soul of the Egyptian god Osiris, father of the "DIVINE CHILD", Horus...For Crowley, Baphomet is further a representative of the spiritual nature of the spermatozoa while also being symbolic of the "MAGICAL CHILD" produced as a result of sex magic. As such, Baphomet represents the Union of Opposites, especially as mystically personified in Beast and Babalon combined and biologically manifested with the sperm and egg united in the zygote. The birth of the Christ Child is a metaphor for Spiritual Rebirth. Enlightenment that comes after a period of Darkness (Ignorance) "Out of Darkness, Cometh Light" But it also quite literally points torward the return of the Sun in Summer Soltice.

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Winter solstice festivals throughout all cultures in ancient and modern times celebrate the rebirth of the Great God (Christ), who is viewed as the newborn Solstice Sun. Most traditions include "festival of lights". Which celebrates the return of Sun or birth of the Son! Germanic Tribes lighted trees (Tannenbaum) and celebrated the fest of light (Lichtfest) around the shortest day of the year, December 21. Yule traditions include decorating a fir or spruce tree with candles, burning a Yule log, hanging mistletoe and holly branches, giving gifts, and general celebration and merriment. On Christmas an evergreen tree that is brought into a home is decorated with Christmas lights and colourful ornaments during the days around Christmas. An angel or a star is placed at the top of the tree, representing the Star of Bethlahem, Archangel Auriel. This is the North star that the Three Wise Men followed.

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Remember, Lucifer "Bringer of Light" or "Morning Star"? If you look again at Eliphas Lévi's depiction of the Horned One, he has a 5-pointed Star on his forehead. "The flame of intelligence shining between his horns is the magic light" It is the Star of Adam Kadom. In the Qabala, Christ, the Logos, the only begotten son of God as found in Genesis 1: 1, not to be confused with the emanations of Adam Kadom (also called Adam or Eden) as found in Genesis 2 (consciousness) or Genesis 3 (matter and life) or Genesis 4 (humanity). Below you'll notice that the symbol for Lucifer is a 5-pointed star pointing downwards, representing the souls descent into darkness. Also shown is the Star of Adam Kadom, a 5-pointed star pointing up, representing Christ Consciousness...enlightement). That would indicate that the Devil as Christ's antagonist in the Bible really represents Man struggling within himself, his own Shadow. It's through the Union of this Duality that we achieve Spiritual Liberation!

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See also:
Saturnalia
Sol Invictus

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Happy Full Moon...

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The High Priestess by Taslimur

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The Magician by Calico Courtney Brooke

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Audrey Cantwell

I just ordered an awesome Asymmetrical Hoodie (with an oversized druid hood) from Audrey Cantwell's Etsy shop, Black Market Baby. I love her designs! Her work reminds me of Odyn Vovk, except it's for women! Or maybe even Rick Owens without the devastating price tags. Her new line "SALEM" is inspired by Witches...swooon!


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audreycantwell.com

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

spider magicks...

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Kirra Jamison

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Simen Johan

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Orryelle Defenestrate-Bascule

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Currently #1 on my book list is Conjunctio – A Graphic Grimmoire by Orryelle Defenestrate-Bascule. "Conjunctio presents mirrored pairs of Sacred Twins and Divine Lovers from various cultural pantheons coupled on facing pages. They are aligned in such a way that when the pages are turned the figures are United in holy conjunction by the alchemical reader. Different reflective relationships – alchymic opposites and complementaries – are explored b e t w e e n the pages."

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Orryelle is quite a fascinating character: a sonic and visual artist, magician and Alchemist, and ritual tattooist. Orryelle founded the Metamorphic Ritual Theatre, a company devoted to the combination of ritual and theatre where the magick on stage is a gateway to a deeper magick. The aim is transformation of consciousness. The actors don't just act their characters, they invoke them. And the audience are not merely spectators, but potential initiates. Orryelle runs iNSPiRALink Multimedia Press, which publishes DVDs of his Metamorphic Ritual Theatre and SilKMilK Magizain – a sampler of art, text and music from various members of the international HermAphroditic ChAOrder of the Silver Dusk. The Silver Dusk is a counter-point to The Golden Dawn, a magickal order established by poets and artists, the Silver Dusk is an art movement instigated by magicians and sorcerers! In addition to his new book, he also created the Book of Kaos Tarot.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

one lump or two?

I just love tea, don't you!? What's even better than a good cup of tea is tea that's good for you! Bittersweet's Apothecary is a new shop on Etsy that offers all natural, organic therapeutic teas. And the packaging is fantastic too! Perfume Elixirs coming soon...

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Monday, November 16, 2009

300 Blog Posts, a Giveaway contest, and a Soap Sale!!!

300 blog posts! Let's celebrate, shall we? I'm having a BUY 1 GET 1 FREE SOAP SALE throughout November!!! I want to move my current stock out to make room for new product! In January, I'll be officially launching my line of bath and body care products. Nicomi "Nix" Turner has been working hard to help me create my labels. I've been driving her crazy with all the little details...no doubt! Lucky for me, she has the patience of a Saint! I'll have a new line of jewelry to introduce this New Year as well...but more about that later!

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I'm also having a little giveaway contest: the winner will receive one of my Butterfly Specimen Necklaces! Just drop a line in my comment section. One name will be drawn on the next Full Moon, December 2, 2009! Good Luck and Happy New Moon!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Catbird

I just finished packing up a wholesale order of Butterfly Specimen Necklaces...I love how this batch turned out! They will be available at a sweet boutique that specializes in indie designers called Catbird. They have a wonderful selection of jewelry, clothing, shoes and gifts! Make sure to check out their online shop! I'll be re-stocking these necklaces in my Etsy shop soon too!

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A delicate butterfly wing rests in a tiny glass specimen vial (approx. 1.5 inches) and hangs on a bronze chain (approx. 30 inches.) Butterfly is a powerful symbol in myth and religion representing the Soul. Call upon the butterfly for guidance in transformation and happiness. She brings with her messages of change, joy, love, and freedom. Listen to Butterfly's gentle requests that we dance to the natural rhythms of life. Allow yourself to emerge from your cocoon transformed into a bright and beautiful free spirit! *Please note...no butterflies are harmed to make this jewelry. Specimens are obtained from a butterfly sanctuary where they are collected after expiring naturally*

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a little shop update!

I just added a few goodies to my Etsy shop: a fierce Black Forest Relic pendant and a lovely set of Gypsy Witch Fortune Teller's teacups! These were made by ALFRED MEAKIN LTD, England circa 1930's, as a promotional item for Lipton Tea. I have a matching set of teacups available at this time, but I've listed them individually. Happy Sunday Darlings!

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Thursday, November 12, 2009

Chris Pell

I stumbled across artist Chris Pell on a late night google excursion. Go to his website to check out the photographs and illustrations that he created to illustrate his story called Hoku'vale. The story is accompanied by two large A1 digital prints as well as four photographs. There's an amazing African Based Religious vibe to these photos...Congo Spirits! More specifically the Bantu Cults: Reglas de Kongo, Palo Mayombe...but that's just my opinion! Chris Pell cites the following influences, "fantasy worlds, alchemy, soca music, mysticism, the internet, horror movies, sparse marshlands, medieval armour, elaborate quests and cats".

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Saturday, November 7, 2009

As promised...

the Halloween party pics...I was so busy looking around, talking and drinking I didn't take many photos! Fortunately there was a professional photographer (dressed as Karl Lagerfeld) on hand so more photos should surface soon enough! I don't even have a photo of myself! My friend JoJo, was the savior of the day! I went to this place, Fantasy Costumes earlier in the evening to rent a period costume which was quoted at around $85-100, but what they didn't tell me on the phone was there was a $275 deposit! I didn't have anything near that amount on my debit card so I totally freaked out. I grabbed a masquerade mask and a black robe that was actually part of a overpriced Voldemort costume. By the time I got to my friend JoJo's place, I was in a serious panic! He saved the day and got me dressed head to toe. I told him I wanted to be a "Phantom Oracle" since I was reading the Tarot that night. He said "time to pull out my bag of shadows" He really tapped into my ancestor's Italian Gypsy vibe...I looked like a raggedy wandering gypsy ghost with a fancy Dia de los Muertos skull face, replete with glitter and sequins. My friend SAL-E snapped one of me by candlelight reading the Tarot, I hope he emails it to me! Anyway, here's my dear friend JoJo pictured on the right with the fabulous SAL-E! Don't they look amazing!?

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The night's event revolved around a very theatrical fashion show featuring the clothing and accessories sold at Bonnie & Clyde's. Other evening highlights: a talented accordion player and violinist, the Absinthe and Champagne bar, and this guy's Lucifer Rising jacket that I was lusting after, his jacket that is...not the guy! Lucifer Rising is the name of a Kenneth Anger film, in case you didn't know.

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When I arrived at the party I found out that I would be splitting the night with another Tarot Reader. It kinda sucked because I thought I would be making more money, but I didn't really mind because reading for 3 hours straight is exhausting! I only exchanged a few words with the other reader, but she seemed lovely. Here's a photo of her in the little vignette created for us, one of many "live" art installations at the event. After my last reading was over, the night ended with me breaking the leg off of an expensive Maarten Baas chair! The leg of the chair slipped off the edge of the little stage I was on, which catapulted me out of the chair and off the stage! Luckily I'm endowed with Black Cat magick and I landed on my feet!!!

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Thursday, November 5, 2009

Tricks and Treats!

I hope you all had a wonderful Halloween! I have so much to share with you all but I've been so busy! Within the next few days I'll be doing a little shop update, a GIVEAWAY contest, and I also have some fun Halloween pics to share! Love you all! xo Lavona

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Halloween Countdown!!!

Halloween is almost here! My friend Stephen is throwing a super fancy, invite only, Masquerade Party at his boutique, Bonnie & Clyde's. Absinthe will be served...danger! Stephen actually hired me to read the Tarot, so basically I get paid to go to a fabulous party! The theme is "The Masque of the Red Death" (1842) a short story by Edgar Allan Poe and later made into a movie starring Vincent Price. The story follows Prince Prospero's attempts to avoid a dangerous plague known as the Red Death by hiding in his abbey. He, along with many other wealthy nobles, has a masquerade ball within seven rooms of his abbey, each decorated with a different color. In the midst of their revelry, a mysterious figure enters and makes his way through each of the rooms. When Prospero confronts this stranger, he falls dead. Stephen is actually creating 7 vignettes with live models, to reenact a modern "Masque of the Red Death" tale.



It's a dress to impress occasion! Full costumes are optional, but masks are required! I realize the story of "The Masque of the Red Death" is set to the Renaissance period, but I may go with the Victorian or Elizabethan Era. I'm leaning towards the Elizabethan Era! The only thing I'm certain about is that I'm wearing all (or mostly) black and a Venetian Plague Doctor Mask. Some inspirations...

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Saturday, October 24, 2009

Do You Believe in Ghosts?

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Frater Chaovsky

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Cyril Helnwein Photography

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

For Strange Women

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A while back, I wrote about Jill McKeever's line of handmade perfumes and adornments, For Strange Women. This is a follow up post to tell you all how happy I am with my purchases! I finally got around to ordering the Moss & Ivy perfume oil that I had been coveting. It's a deep a green mossy scent balanced out with sweet notes. I think this scent would smell delish on men too! My next purchase was Rosewood Lip Balm, let me tell you, I AM IN LOVE! I'm somewhat a lip balm connoisseur and this is my new favorite! The texture is perfect and the scent of Rosewood never fails to sooth my soul! I'm going to buy the Astral Projection perfume oil next! For Strange Women was a featured seller on Etsy recently, you can check it out here. Jill gave my blog an honorable mention as one of her favorite Internet haunts and mentioned my etsy shop too...how sweet was that!?

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Tuesday, October 20, 2009

De profundis clamo ad te domine

The veil is getting thin dear ones, only 10 days until Halloween! Are you ready!? I thought I'd post something for the spirits of lost souls and hungry ghosts, be they living or dead. SOPOR AETERNUS & THE ENSEMBLE OF SHADOWS expresses the profound suffering of the Anima Sola through dark visual narratives and haunted ballads. The music playfully fuses elements of classical, baroque, medieval, and even electronic music, the essence of SOPOR AETERNUS & THE ENSEMBLE OF SHADOWS always remains entirely »GOTHIC«.

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Officially founded in 1989, the Germany based SOPOR AETERNUS & THE ENSEMBLE OF SHADOWS is one of the last of the very few dark groups/projects in Europe (in fact, on this planet), who have based the sacred trinity of their music, poetry and visual appearance on the explicit emphasis of the highly individual expression of pain, isolation, depression, token suicides and the desperate search for the »sacred reunion«; all conceived and acted out by SOPOR's sole protagonist … the transgendered and utterly beautiful Goddess (and likewise tragically Butoh-esque creature) ANNA-VARNEY CANTODEA. Despite the fact that to this very day ANNA-VARNEY still refuses to perform her magic(k)al work live in front of a human audience, SOPOR AETERNUS & THE ENSEMBLE OF SHADOWS have long gathered cult status in underground circles worldwide.

ANNA- VARNEY's ritualistic/Jungian art is not necessarily rooted in the grounds of a commonly accepted sense of aesthetics … which is one of the many aspects that gives his/her work its serious and most unique character. Strongly recommended to be approached only with an open heart and mind, the profound darkness (and occasionally subversive humour) of ANNA-VARNEY's multi-layered (yet fragile) art is mainly intended as a spiritual healing-process for the wounded soul.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Ellen Rogers Photography

Ellen Rogers is the last of a dying breed, a photographer who uses film! All her work is analogue and the only digital equipment she uses is a scanner to scan the end result. Her beguiling photographs exude a dramatic sense of timelessness, as though created decades ago. She manifests haunting, ethereal images by experimenting with traditional darkroom processes...black magick!

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