“A witch is an embodiment of her truth in all its power.” Juliet Diaz
“Throughout history, attempts to control women have masqueraded as witchcraft, and for some people, simply self-identifying as a witch – a symbol of strong female power, especially in the face of the violent, misogynistic backlash that can greet it – is a form of activism.” Bianca Bosker
I was called a witch and burned at the stake in a past life. If you are reading this, chances are high that you were too. The mass murder of women during the European witch hunts between the 15th and 18th centuries is called by some a “holocaust of women.” The term is controversial. But past research has revealed to me that some say that nine million women were killed during the witch-hunting times for activities such as reading Oracle Cards, mixing healing herbal potions, practicing healing and brewing beer.
Ariella Indigo, U.K. Starseed & Lightworker, tells us that for more than 7,000 years, ale – and, later, beer – was a household staple for most families in England and other parts of Europe. Because this particular beverage was such a common part of the average person’s diet, fermenting was one of a woman’s normal household tasks – which makes women the original brewers. Ariella says that if you travelled back in time and strolled through a market in the middle ages, you’d see women with pointy hats gathered in front of boiling cauldrons – brewing beer. It’s how single women earned money and how married women supplemented family income. Apparently, they even had cats to keep mice away from the wheat piles. “Pointy hats, cauldrons, cats… sound familiar?” When men decided they wanted to take over brewing responsibilities and the money that it earned – they accused women of being witches – an almost certain death sentence. I found out from Ariella that the purpose of the pointy hats was so that customers could see them in the crowded market place, of course the cauldrons were for transporting the brew and cats were not “demon familiars” but were there to keep mice away from the grain. Some of the men knew that these women brewers weren’t witches but since they didn’t believe women should spend so much time away from the home and on an activity that took time and dedication (hours of prep, lots of grain lifting, lots of floor sweeping, (brooms and witches ring a bell?) that should be spent at home having and raising children. In fact, in the 1500s says Ariella, some towns such as Chester, England, made it illegal for most women to sell beer, worried that young ale wives would grow up to be old spinsters. “The iconography of witches with their pointy hats and cauldrons has endured as has men’s domination of the beer industry. ” The top 10 beer companies in the world are headed by male CEOs and have mostly male board members. (Smithsonian magazine) “It was ever thus,” my British Gran would be saying.
For fun, and to pass along a message to my readers, I asked my Higher Self, Aurora, what your empowerment message is today from your inner witch and pulled a card from the believe in your own magic oracle deck by Amanda Lovelace. You received this card: “Bitch-fire: Stand up for yourself.” The image shows the arms and hands of a woman wearing red and black nail polish holding a match lit up in front of her. Her arms are cloaked but what is showing looks young and/or ageless. It is card number 16 for you numerologists. “there’s no better way to say it: someone in your life is trying to burn you at the stake. maybe you didn’t give them something they wanted or you didn’t let them get away with their bad behavior. either way, they’re trying to ruin your reputation. rest assured, your reputation will stay intact. silence can be effective, but this is not that kind of situation. get loud and let them have a taste of your bitch-fire.” As you can tell this is a no-nonsense deck! If you received this message from the Angels it would likely be the “Stay True To Yourself” card, and it would guide you to ask Archangel Gabriel to help you to be honest with yourself and others. Truth is empowering. Remember, Jesus said: “The truth shall set you free.”
Things started changing for witches, for women, in the 19th century, “as transcendentalism and the women’s-suffrage movement took hold, witches enjoyed the beginnings of a re-branding – from wicked devil-worshippers to intuitive wise women.” (Bianca Bosker, The Atlantic, March 2020 issue.) As Gabriella Herstik (witch and author) told Sabat magazine, “It’s always been about the outsider, about the woman who doesn’t want to do what the Church or patriarchy wants.” Juliet Diaz, interviewed by Bosker for The Atlantic says: “I’m trying to bring awareness to (the idea) that what we think is normal is actually magical. But we’re so used to these fantasies that we see on TV – you flick a wand and something actually happens. (People) start thinking that’s what magic is, and they forget that they, themselves, are the magical beings.”
The witch within is a magical being. Is it time to reclaim her?
Love and Light, Monica