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Old English Folklore

Most of us must have heard different stories during our childhood about the various fan-favorite characters such as Robin Hood etc, however, we never have realised that these are actually well known folklore – stories and traditions that have developed through centuries. These tales usually have a strong message behind them that is meant to teach the child a lesson and instill good qualities within the reader. This is why most of us have a very distinct sense of right and wrong. These stories with their subliminal messages help enforce various different values within the readers. Here is an overview of a few famous old English folklore that have been told time and again through centuries.

Robin Hood

All through the world, children know the name of Robin Hood. The character has been reinvented time and again but what was the real, classic story behind this character? The actual tale was written in the 15th century and was called “Robin Hood and the Monk”. This story is nothing like the story we know and love. It is about little John who places a bet with Robin Hood, who is in the King’s jail. He then kills a monk and a young boy to rescue Robin from jail. This story is a bizarre version of the tale we love and is nothing like what we expect it to be.

Tom Thumb

Ever heard of Tom Thumb and Thumbelina? It is a fan favorite and loved by children all over the world. It is known as the first ever folklore story told to children in England. It’s about Tom, a kid who is no larger than his father’s thumb. He goes on adventures all through the English countryside. What is shocking is that it is based on a real person whose grave is found in Trinity Church, Lincolnshire. However, we believe that he must have been larger than a thumb! This shows children that no matter what they look like, they can still have the adventures of their life without hesitation.

King Arthur

The tales of King Arthur are another one of those tales that have been retold again and again in various different ways. Movies and TV shows have been based on this old English folklore. Some believe he was a real English King that actually did exist while others believe he is just a myth. His story is like a fairytale, full of dragons, swords, mythical creatures and more. He is known as the chivalric hero who tries to save his people. His story is one that is used to instill bravery and righteousness within children.

Folklore is an excellent way to promote excellent qualities within children and keep cultures and traditions alive, as these are a treasured part of English heritage.

Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn – Part 2

Rosae Rubeae et Aureae Crucis, in English means the ‘Ruby rose and the cross of gold’ and was the second of the three orders of the golden dawn which taught the underlying magic and spiritual regrowth in the studies of occult and metaphysics to its followers. Unlike the first order “the golden dawn” which was about philosophy and metaphysics, this inner circle of the hermetic order incorporated magic and schooled people regarding Alchemy, Astral travel, and Scrying.

Scrying:

Popular in Occult circles, scrying also known as “seeing” was an ancient way of connecting with the supernatural entities by using a special medium with a hidden purpose. These purposes varied from people to people, some performed it in order to know the future, some did it for personal guidance and some practiced it for inspiration or revelation. In ancient times, most people usually performed scrying to gain attention from people and to claim prophecy.

Astral Projection:

Another practice that sounds unusual and interesting at the same time is the traveling of the soul outside the physical body. This is a famous phenomenon in esotericism projection. It is a state that people intentionally reach to gain an out-of-body experience more specifically to travel along time as ancient people believed that soul is a conscious phenomenon that is separated from the physical body and has the tendency to travel through time. The means to perform the astral projection changed from time to time, some people entered this state through hallucinations and self-hypnosis, and some associated it with meditation and dreams. This phenomenon is categorized as pseudoscience because the claim that the soul is a distinct feature from the neutral body is not supported by science.

Alchemy:

This is an ancient branch of natural philosophy that emerged in earlier centuries and spread all over the world in Asia, Africa, Europe, etc. The people who are experts in this field of philosophy are commonly referred to as Alchemists and claim to have this ability to transform one material into another e.g. transforming lead into gold.

All these magical teachings of the inner circle of the hermetic order helped the followers in gaining a strong control on their psyche by creating an unbreakable link between themselves and the divine powers. Moreover, the followers of the hermetic order of the golden dawn used to believe that after learning the magical and philosophical phenomenon, they will reach their highest potential where they will have complete hold of their lives and even on the end of life. Thinking out of the box, crossing the human boundaries and becoming more than humans was the main motto of this school of thought. In order to make life peaceful, the important element was meditation which the followers usually practiced.

Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn – Part 1

When the world was busy undertaking scientific experiments, there was a secret society that was devoted to the spiritual development of humans by studying, as well as practicing, metaphysics, occult and paranormal activities. Regarded as an occult revival, Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn sprung up in the late 19th and earlier 20th century and emerged as a prominent and prestigious magical order in Great Britain. The current magic and rituals of contemporary traditions that people witness today mark its influence and roots back to the golden dawn that was behind the spiritual awakening of many influential people i.e. William Butler Yeats, A.E Waite, etc. Being responsible for an occult revival, the purpose and goal of Hermetic Order was to bring into consciousness the inner divine sparkle of humans gained through real-life experiences and contemporary education.

First-order:

Due of its complex philosophy and magical teachings, this society was divided into three orders among which the first one is called the “Golden Dawn” although all three of them are jointly called the “Golden Dawn”. All these orders have specific purposes, the focus on personal development is covered by the first order which was responsible for giving people exposure to hermetic Qabalah through education of classical elements and basics of geomancy, tarot, and astrology.

It all started with William Wynn Westcott sending a letter of permission to Anna Sprengel who used to have an ability to come in contact with supernatural entities called Secret chiefs – the experts over any magical order. Some followers of the Golden Dawn believed that the secret chiefs were basically a representation of legends who were sources of esotericism. The Isis-Urania Temple was the first temple established in 1888 in London, and provided women with an opportunity to learn the metaphysical and philosophical concepts. In the initial stage, the Golden Dawn order did not teach magic practices, it was a small cohesive group that taught rituals and meditations written in Cipher manuscripts and became vigorous in 1892.

The effect of Golden Dawn on Great Britain:

Great Britain was under the cloud of Victorian England where people were restricted to express their feelings, to practice their free-will and to live freely because the world was extremely judgmental and conservative. The ruling class who dominated restricted people to express their thoughts and personal interests, and political inclinations lead people to imprisonment. England was struggling with the consequences of the class system when the Golden Dawn appeared and gave people a chance to escape reality and make out a life different from the rest of English society.

Into this environment, the spiritual links brought out the hidden abilities of people and helped them with spiritual regrowth by leading them to a path where they could make up their own way of reaching their desires. This school of thought made goddesses and god out of ordinary women and men in the form of professionals by detaching them from the hypnotic and technological world into the world of philosophy and metaphysics.

Different Types of Astrology

Astrology is one of the most interesting and yet crucial subjects with so many opposing beliefs about it. As it started to evolve and grow as a branch of study, astrology grew into many different dimensions and was thematically divided into branches. Despite the intense criticism it faces, there are over eighty branches of astrology. Some of the most important and commonly known types of astrology that have developed are discussed in detail below:

Vedic Astrology

Vedic astrology is also referred to as Indian astrology. It is the science of self-realization and self-knowledge. Vedic astrology gained a lot of popularity among the Hindus as it was driven from the ancient spiritual Indian leader. This type of astrology gives the power to see the future lives of people in a clear manner.

Zodiac Astrology

This type of astrology is mainly related to the planets and how one planet effects one zodiac sign or star. Zodiac signs include Aries, Leo, Cancer, Taurus, Pisces, Scorpio, Taurus, Sagittarius, Gemini, Virgo, Libra, Capricorn, and Aquarius. These zodiac signs and the movement of planets are thought to affect daily life and depict a person’s personality depending on the date of the month he or she was born on.

Medical Astrology

Medical astrology relates diseases and medical problems with the position of the sun, moon, and planets. Medical astrologists associate parts of the body with zodiac signs. Medical astrology has now become extremely popular. The diet, herbs, remedies, and treatments under this branch are also decided based on one’s zodiac sign.  

Fixed Astrology

Fixed astrology tends to explain why some humans are stubborn while others are calm minded. This type of astrology allocates signs to zodiac symbols like fire is for Leo, Scorpio’s fixed sign is water, etc. Based on these signs fixed astrology allocates different personality traits to different zodiac signed people.

Benefits of Astrology

Astrology permits meaningful and practical change in the life of an individual in order to improve the quality of life. Astrology has influenced and eased our lives to a great extent. Firstly, astrology has helped understand different personalities. Second, it helps predict future and indicate the best time to accomplish goals or to make important decisions. Moreover, it also tells us the signs that are compatible with one another and those that are not, so that two people can determine the degree to which they agree with each other. 

Criticism

Astrology is also criticized by intellectuals for many reasons, including:

  • Astrology lacks all kinds of scientific support.
  • The sun ends up at the same place almost every day.
  • It differentiates humans unfairly.
  • Human personalities are very complex, and cannot be based on Zodiac signs.
  • Stars which are billions of light-years away cannot influence our lives.

History of Astrology

The word Astrology is derived from a Latin word Astrologia, which was derived from Greek words Astron meaning stars and Logia meaning study. So astrology means ‘study of stars’, but astrology is something more than just studying the stars. Astrology consists of statements, beliefs, and practices that are both factual and scientific, but are not compatible with scientific methods. Astrology is thought to drive human affairs and earthly events by studying the position and movement of astronomic objects. Astronomic objects include the stars, sun, moon, planets, solar system, space, and parallel universe.

Astrology has been ante ceded to second Millennium BC. At first, astrology was used to predict the seasonal changes and give meaning to astronomic cycles as signals of communication. Astrology became even more popular and important because some cultures like Hinduism, Maya, and Chinese associated their beliefs with certain astronomical events.

The oldest form of astrology which is still in use, is the Western Astrology. This was first used in 17th to 19th century and has its roots in Mesopotamia – a historical region of Western Asia. After extreme success in Mesopotamia it then spread to other parts of the world like Greece, the Arab world and the Roman empire. Western astrology basically attempts to explain the personality of a person and predict important events in the lives of humans based on astronomic objects.

Western astrology is therefore linked to horoscopes. The word horoscope is derived from the Greek, meaning time and observer. Horoscope is a chart or diagram representing the position of astronomic objects like the sun, moon, stars, and planets at the time of the human’s birth or at the time of important events.

History of Astrology

Astrology was considered a scholarly tradition. In close relation with medicine, astronomy, alchemy, and meteorology, astrology was also included in academic and political domains. Also in literature, astrology was mentioned in famous works by Geoffrey Chaucer, William Shakespeare,  Dante Alighieri, Lope de Vega, and Calderón de la Barca.

At the end of the 19th century, scientific methods were widely used. These scientific methods challenged astrology on both theoretical and experimental grounds. The experimental grounds opened a new chapter in the history of astrology. Scientific methods then proved that astrology had no scientific validity and explanatory power. This does decline the academic standard of Astrology as still many people from America, Britain, and Canada continued to believe that the stars and planets’ position and movement effects lives.

Views Against Astrology

Topologists are people who are concerned with the study of the properties of geometric objects. Some famous topologist viewpoints are briefly mentioned below:

  • Ancient

Christian theologian St. Augustine said that determination of astrology caused conflicts among Christian principles and mentioned the failure of astrology by saying that people born at the same time behave differently.

  • Medieval

Muslim astronomers said that the methods of astrology are against the views of Islam. They also cited that to predict God’s will is against the Islamic Principles.

  • Modern

The modern viewpoint states that astrology is not compatible with modern catholic beliefs and its practice must be abhorred.

Divine Light

Sometimes, our soul needs cleansing to get rid of all the negativity that it is surrounded with in this world. Divine light is believed to serve this very purpose. Everyone has this light inside them. It is a matter of disclosing yourself to it with the aid of invoking your inner being. This helps in getting deeper information of the nature of the Divine and to recognise the higher consciousness inside you.

Divine Light is a sort of a technological prayer that has lots of functions. It is a shape of safety from the evils and negativity that surrounds you. It also allows to strengthen your inner self by raising your awareness and consciousness. Divine light serves as a mechanism that protects, heals, and empowers your energies associated with the people and items which can be most essential to your existence.

Everyone has divine light inside of them. It is only a matter of self-consciousness to invoke it. It is veiled by many layers of bodily and psychological topics within which you have shielded yourself. It is thought to be pure and has the ability to help you in your life as do angels.

Invoking divine light within you can be a way of healing and purifying your soul. However, what human beings do not understand is that Divine light is a great source of protection and has restoration abilities. In moments of sorrow and depression, it’s going to convey happiness into your life. If you are broken, it’s going to mend you. In case you need assistance in existence, it’ll show you the course in an effort to lead you to success.

It may be invoked through physical visualisation. That is how the transfer of light inside, in the form of strength, keeps happening within the surrounding environment without you being consciously aware of it.

To invoke the divine light, it is important to be at a place where you can achieve mental peace – an area where you can meditate without any disturbance. The invoking process requires you to relax and control your breathing, so your mind can focus on the invocation of the divine light. There is usually a prayer that people read to seek the help and guidance of the angels. It is then felt as though one is being encircled by a blinding light. Light focused above the head is known as the purest form and known as Cosmic Light, Light of God, or Divine Light. It is believed that this light then enters one’s body from above the head and flows into the heart, and down to the rest of the body to every organ, purifying and cleansing it. As this manner takes effect, the entire body, mind, and soul becomes energised as all the negativity leaves the body, and the person is filled with light and purity.

In conclusion, divine light is known to provide the person with the mental peace they are looking for. It is a sort of meditation for the spiritual awakening, purification and receiving of peace the soul needs.