We are not human beings having a spiritual experience, we are spiritual beings having a human experience

Saturday, April 21, 2018

An evening with Jackson Galaxy


Blessed Sunday all! As you know, we had tickets to go see the Cat Behaviorist from the Animal Planet TV series, "My Cat From Hell" last night at The Santander Arena & Performing Arts Center in Reading, PA. During the show, he had announced to us all that his series just recently finished taping their 9th season and some of the episodes were actually shot in Philadelphia. How cool is THAT?

Anyway, the show was scheduled to begin at 7:30PM, but there was a dinner served at The Mezz which was also located in the building from 6:00 to 7:30. So we parked in the Double Tree Hotel parking lot just across the street from the Santander Performing Arts Center. As we were walking past the parking lot entrance, I had taken these pics. A piano in the middle of the entrance lanes decorated with all scenes from the City of Reading ...


Our food at The Mezz was very good ...

 DINNER MENU:

  • Cream of Potato Soup
  • Toss Salad with Dressing
  • Cranberry Relish
  • Roast Turkey Breast with Herb Stuffing
  • Sliced Top Round of Beef with Mushroom Demi Glaze
  • Potatoes Au gratin
  • Honey Glazed Baby Carrots
  • Harvest Dinner Rolls with Butter
  • Pumpkin Pie
  • Coffee, Water & Iced Tea
  • *Includes One Drink (cocktail, beer, wine, soda)

We arrived inside the center at about 7:25PM and took our seats which were located in the left balcony section of the theater. Jackson made his appearence on the stage around 7:55.


He started off the evening by giving everyone a brief history about where he came from and why he is so passionate about his work and why he does what he does. He is very heavily involved with animal shelters and he tours all over the world in order to spread the word about saving the lives of both cats and dogs by adopting, becoming a foster guardian and the like. 


He was exactly as I imagined he would be - completely and utterly caring as he shared many of his own personal stories about the cats he has dealt with since he began working with them 22 years ago. He was entertaining, charismatic, and extremely honest. In other words, 'what you see is what you get' with him. He involved the audience by asking for volunteers to join him up on stage to demonstrate the topics he was discussing. Topics which are covered in his new book, "Total Cat Mojo." One of the sections of his book talks about the three general categories which indoor cats can be broken up into. The first is what he describes as the "Mojito Cat" who is so confident in his surroundings that he actually welcomes anyone who dares enter "his" home. Jackson asked one of the members of the audience to pretend she was knocking on his door and as he opens it he shows everyone an example of how the Mojito Cat would react as the guest walks through the door - immediately rubbing up against their legs performing a figure 8 and vicariously placing their scent on the unsuspecting guest. Now, the only way to get the full effect of this scene is to click on the first pic then continue scrolling forward to show the rest ...

Then there is the "Wallflower Cat" who is just the opposite of the Mojito Cat as they are the ones who always hide, most especially when there are guests in the house. Last, there is what Jackson refers to as the "Napoleon Cat." This is the cat who continuously pics on other indoor cats in order to assert his dominance - attacking, chasing, biting, jumping on top of, even urinating in the house because he does not feel his very own space/territory  i.e. "Cat Mojo." 

Jackson also answered a few questions from the audience. He even gave a fan who asked a question about his cat a special cat toy to take home which he had used earlier in the show while demonstrating proper ways to play with your cat ...

After which, he wrapped up his show, thanked everyone, took a bow, blew a little kiss to all and said, "Peace and I love you!"

On the way out, I picked up a t-shirt as a little souvenir from the night. The tipped ear represents the practice of TNR (Trap, Neuter, Release). My Tabitha was a TNR when we found her ...

Had a great time and learned a lot of interesting things about cats I never knew before!

Thursday, April 19, 2018

This and That ...

Happy Friday everyone! Looks like it is going to be a rather busy weekend. But, before I tell you all about it, there are a couple of things I wanted to talk about. First of all, (and I do apologize for taking so long) I FINALLY finished the 2018 Sabbat/Full Moon post I started toward the beginning of this year. What can I say? Time got away from me!

2018 Sabbat & Full Moons


Next, the "countdown" to my last day of employment as my job is "going away" on Monday, April 30th begins. As the end-date gets closer, I have very mixed emotions about it. On one hand, after 14 years of working for this company, I definitely need a break from the job itself even though I will very much miss some of my long-time fellow co-workers ... and, most especially the fact that I will get a regular paycheck! On the other hand, I am absolutely terrified about starting all over yet again at the age of 54!!! I pray I have the strength to push forward and the confidence enough to be able to find a job that will pay my bills. In any case, I virtually have no choice in the matter so starting over it is! 

Finally for a bit of happy news, we have tickets to go see the 'Cat Daddy'  himself from the Animal Planet series, "My Cat From Hell" live this Saturday night at The Santander Arena in Reading, PA. 

For those of you who are not familiar with Jackson, he is a Cat Behaviorist who has a very interesting background as to how he went from working at an animal shelter in Boulder, Colorado to a long journey ahead working with (and yes, learning from) cats! I have already read his first book, "Cat Daddy: What the World's Most Incorrigible Cat Taught Me About Life, Love and Coming Clean".


Jackson with his beloved first cat, "Benny"


And I just recently purchased his latest book entitled, "Total Cat Mojo." I thoroughly enjoyed his first book and once I began reading it I realized that it was one of those books that I just could not put down. However, unlike "Cat Daddy," which is a more personal autobiography about his life and how he came to be where he is today, his new book talks a lot more about how to live with indoor cats and promises to teach you some "tricks of the trade" as to achieve a long and happy life living with your cats by understanding them. The reviews I have read regarding this book have been quite excellent and I most definitely look forward to reading this one!
There is also a pre-dinner before Jackson speaks. I am very excited to see his show and hear what he has to tell us cat lovers and fans who have a deep respect for what he does. He works with both the cat guardians and their cats. In most cases to keep the family cats from being homeless or even worse euthanized when their guardians have reached the point where they do not know how to handle their cat's behavioral issues any longer. His show is incredible and it always amazes me how he can literally re-train both cats and, many times, their owners as well!

I will leave you all with one of Jackson's cat tip videos. Hope you all enjoy!
Jackson Galaxy's 5 Cat Tips

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Throwback Thursday


On a Silver Day
 (Orginally posted on November 30, 2010)
Last March, my friends and I had the pleasure of meeting Silver Ravenwolf, renowned author of several books on Wicca and witchcraft and a witch who is known for her eclectic style.  She came to Reading, PA to teach her seminar on Pow Wow. For those who are not familiar with Pow Wow, it is a form of German folk magick dating back 400 years ago.



 As Silver would say, "It is a belief system, not a religion!"  Pow Wow is indigenous to South Central Pennsylvania and heavily associated with a group of people called the Pennsylvania Dutch who live primarily in the Lancaster county area.  Although I, myself, was actually born and raised in Berks county, Lancaster is just a "hop, skip and a jump away," so to speak, from where I live.  My great aunts and uncles used to speak the Pennsylvania Dutch language and, growing up, I learned some as well.  


Naturally, I had heard of Pow Wow, but never really knew much about it or its' true origins.  Pow Wow draws heavily upon ancient chants, talismans and personal energy.  Unlike their ancestors, a majority of the Pennsylvania Dutch people of today do not even acknowledge its' existence - either because their faith lies strictly with Christianity and as a result they do not follow the Craft or because of the fact that over the years it has deteriorated to a great degree into simple faith healing. Unbeknownst to many of them; however, the hex signs which they hang on their barn doors for protection from fire are a form of Pow Wow. Hex signs are used for a variety of different reasons, other than protection. For example, they are also used for luck and love.  

My friends posing outside Celtic Myth & Moonlight - Sara, Lady Sabrina Rhiannon & Deb.
With Silver Ravenwolf at her book signing

I found Silver to be a terrific speaker, witty and extremely personable. Given the chance, I would definitely attend another one of her seminars and I would highly recommend them to anyone!


"Ich leibe bisht du!" (I wish you love) 

 - Lady Caer Morganna 

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

The Boleskine Manor: Fact or Fiction?


Greetings, my dear friends! While browsing around the net searching YouTube videos, I inadvertently came across a few documentaries on the history of the Boleskine Manor (House). To tell you the truth, I never actually heard of this place before, let alone that it once belonged to the very controversial Aleister Crowley who purchased the house in 1899 for the express purpose of conducting/performing a series of magickal workings called the "Sacred Magic of Abramelin the Mage" taken from a grimoire called "The Book of Abramelin." According to Crowley, the actual purpose of this ritual is to invoke one's Guardian Angel. Not only does it require at least six months of preparation, celibacy and abstinence from alcohol, but it also includes the summoning of the 12 Kings and Dukes of Hell to bind them and remove their negative influences from the magician's life. Crowley was so committed to acheiving this goal that one of the many reasons he chose the location of the house was because the grounds facing the Loch Ness (the house was located on the south-east side) had sand which would allow him to "see" the footprints of the spirits he had summoned. While in the process of this magickal working, Crowley was called to Paris by the leader of the Golden Dawn and therefore made the very grave mistake of not banishing the demons he had summoned forth which, according to legend, led to a series of strange happenings both in and around the Boleskine House.

Whether or not one believes in any or all of the tales surrounding this legendary structure, the fact is that strange and tragic events had been going on in that house long before Crowley ever lived there. The house has a very interesting history which dates back to  circa 1760. The Parish of Boleskine was formed in the 13th Century and both a kirk and a graveyard were built in the parish around this time as well. A clergymen at the time named Minister Thomas Houston (1648-1705) was said to have had the task of rather hastily laying animated corpses back in their graves after a (supposedly) devious local wizard had raised the dead in the Boleskine graveyard. 
The Boleskine Cemetary in Scotland beside Loch Ness

The Boleskine House was built on the site of the kirk, which according to legend caught fire during congregation and killed everyone inside. A man named Colonel Archibald Fraser later purchased the ranch-style house which included 4 bedrooms, a kitchen, lounge, drawing room, and a library. There was even a tunnel linking the house to the graveyard. 

Since then, there have been several others who had purchased and lived in the house. Crowley moved out of it in 1913 and an actor named George Sanders bought it. Sanders was involved in a scandal selling shares for a pig farm supposedly built on the grounds of Boleskine - except the farm never actually existed. The next owner was a man named Major Edward Grant. In 1965, Grant committed suicide in Crowley's bedroom with a shotgun. After this, a married couple moved into the house. The wife was blind and after only a month the husband walked out, leaving her to wonder around unable to see. 
(excerpt from The Oxford Address/interview)

In 1969, an experimental filmmaker named Kenneth Anger bought and rented the house for a few months. Anger had a interest in the occult and knew about the house's strange but tragic history. When musician Jimmy Page heard about this, he bought the house in 1971 - although he spent very little time living there. It is no secret that Page, by his own public admission (for a recent Oxford University interview, please click on the link underneath the above pic), was "very interested actually" in the teachings of The Golden Dawn and "all things mystical and magical, all things bright and beautiful."  (BTW, contrary to popular belief, Page is not a Wiccan, nor is there any evidence to support him even being Pagan to this date. At any rate, the only person who truly knows the answer to that question is Page himself). 

Page had asked a close, long-time school friend of his named Malcolm Dent to stay at the house and take care of it in his absence. Dent recalls quite a few horrifying moments while living there. Page sold the house in 1992 and it had a couple of more owners since that time. It is worth mentioning that the house suffered two more fires and the last one almost completely destroyed it. In spite of this, it is said that the house is due to go back on the market in the near future.  


The 2015 house fire


I, personally, believe in spirits and, of course, magick; however, in my humble opinion, the Boleskine House has a very troubled past, and in regards to Crowley, I believe he indeed practiced black magick there (he even admits it in his own book "The Confessions of Aleister Crowley.") Furthermore, Crowley himself admits his black magic "simply got out of hand." I have said it before and I will say it again, NOTHING GOOD comes from playing and/or dabbling in the black arts! That much, I am sure of.

So, what do you think about the story behind the Boleskine House? I would be very interested in your thoughts or opinions on the subject.  

Saturday, April 14, 2018

A Sunday "fun post" ...

Happy Sunday all! Hope all is well. It seems that some of us are only now getting a little taste of spring weather (and, unfortunately, some are not as of yet) as the temperatures here today in Reading, PA have been in the 80's ... breezy and beautiful!

I have been pretty busy as of late, but I really wanted to do another fun post and so I decided to put a quick little list together of the my all-time favorite male rock stars through the years. This is merely a short list of the ones whose music and memory have really stuck with me over time. Anyway, I hope you enjoy!  :)

10.
David Cassidy - (1950 to 2017)
9.
David Bowie - (1947 to 2016)
8.
Eddie Van Halen (Van Halen)
7.
Jon Bon Jovi (Bon Jovi)
6.
Lenny Kravitz
5.
Kurt Cobain - (1967 to 1994)
4.
Bruce Springsteen - "The Boss"
3.
Jim Morrison - (1943 to 1971)
2.
Scott Weiland (1967 to 2015) Stone Temple Pilots

1.
Jimmy Page (Led Zeppelin)








Ah yes, and in case any of you are wondering why so many pics of James Patrick Page? Well, aside from being my all-time favorite guitarist from blues to rock and roll, I also recently bought his new book called, "Jimmy Page" by Jimmy Page (I know, how original, right?) which is actually a large and lovely book of Page's own personally hand picked photos from his collection of his life and his added personal stories to go along with them. CAN'T WAIT to read it ... !  ;)


Have a Blessed Sunday everyone!!