Glossary – WXYZ


Wands

Wands are one of the four suits of the Minor Arcana in Tarot, corresponding to the suit of clubs in the standard playing cards deck. They represent fire and tend to regard spiritual experiences when their suit is heavily in play during divination. The magical tool of the wand also represents fire (though it is air in some traditions) and, as such, it is positioned in the south on the altar.


Water


The symbol for water

The element of water rules the emotions, corresponds to the suit of Cups in Tarot, and is given the position of west on a standard altar. (This varies in some traditions.) Water is ruled by the Archangel Gabriel in the Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram. Water also rules the signs of Cancer, Scorpio, and Pisces in the astrological zodiac. It is considered to be receptive, cold, and moist/wet.


Wicca

Wicca is a Neopagan religion and a form of modern witchcraft. Its disputed origins lie in England in the early 20th century, though it was first popularized during the 1950s by Gerald Gardner. Wicca is typically a duotheistic religion, worshiping a Goddess and a God, who are traditionally viewed as the Triple Goddess and Horned God. These two deities are often viewed as being facets of a greater pantheistic Godhead, and as manifesting themselves as various polytheistic deities. Other characteristics of Wicca include the ritual use of magic, a basic code of morality, and the celebration of eight seasonally based festivals. (Definition: Wikipedia, retrieved 1 Feb 2010.)

Wicca is an initiatory tradition, though in the 1980s-1990s it was also used as an umbrella term for the general practice of witchcraft and the worship of various pantheons. Nowadays, the term “neo-Wicca” is used for those who self-initiate, and anyone not part of a lineage-traceable coven is not typically considered to be a “true” Wiccan. In the early days of the Internet, the belief that Wicca was a pre-Christian religion spread, with many self-initiated practitioners spreading rumors about the number of real witches executed during the witch hunts of western Europe in the late middle ages. Now it is more generally accepted that Gerald Gardner was the true father of Wicca, despite his early claims that he was himself initiated by a secretive old coven priestess.

The best known tenet of Wicca is the Wiccan Rede: “An’ it harm none, do as ye will.” See Thelema.


Wood

Wood is one of the five Chinese elements, known as Wu Xing, which also include fire, water, earth, and metal. The translation is better thought of as the Five Movements, Five Phases or Five Steps/Stages. Wood corresponds to the east, Jupiter, new yang, spring, and wind. (Wikipedia, notes retrieved 1 Feb 2010.)


Work Dream

A work dream is a dream in which subconscious or spiritual work is done, with or without spirit assistance. Oftentimes, it is only remembered as a lingering emotion coupled with difficult to describe visual elements. This is not to be confused with a strange dream that’s hard to describe; a work dream is unique in that there is literally no way to quantify what one remembers other than a “sense of working.” This type of dream is both intriguing and frustrating as, more often than not, one is never able to gain intellectual comprehension (which typically requires language to bridge the gap between experience and understanding).


Yahoo!Group

A Yahoo!Group is an online forum/mailing list that grew out of the earlier sites of “OneList” and “E-Groups.” E-Groups bought out OneList, and then Yahoo bought out E-groups to create Yahoo!Groups. It works like this: You sign up and provide a working email address. Then you find groups that sound interesting to you and join them. (There are dozens on occult subjects.) If you sign up to receive posts by mail, then all of the mail sent to a group comes to your email inbox. This is not as bad as most online forums, because you are not subscribing to the entire site, only to a specific group. When you receive a group email, so does everyone else subscribed to that group (barring problems), unless a person has signed up to “No Mail,” electing to read on the web forum. The web forum is simply a message archive, but instead of getting an email immediately as it was sent by the person posting, you read at your leisure and get everything late.

The advantages to getting it all via mailing list are that you can reply immediately, and that makes it sort of like a group chat. But unlike a group chat, you are not nailed to your chair and can wander off, to reply whenever you get back, without missing anything. The replies of anyone who has posted since you left are now in your inbox, and you don’t have to bother with hunting them down on the site and sorting through them. It can be as instant or as leisurely as you choose at any given moment, yet still easily accessible and easy to remember, because it’s all right in your inbox.

There is also a digest option, in which you receive a long, bulk email once a day (more often in busier groups). The biggest disadvantages to the digest are delayed delivery, and the fact that people often do not trim the previous mail from their replies, so you have to scroll for pages to skip all the filler between bits of fresh material.

If you get sick of any group, you can simply send an email to unsubscribe-groupname @ yahoogroups.com and you’ll be removed. There’s also a link at the bottom of each email, as supplied by Yahoo!Groups. It’s a nifty, useful system, and it’s free.


Yesod

Yesod, Foundation, is the ninth sephirah on the Qabalistic tree of life. It is the means by which Malkuth accesses the rest of the tree, as there is only one path from Malkuth on the hermetic tree, and that path leads to Yesod. The sephirah of Yesod translates spiritual concepts into actions that unite us with God.

It is often associated with the Moon, because it is the sphere which reflects the light of all the other sephirot into Malkuth, and it is associated with the sexual organs, because it is here that the higher spheres connect to the earth.

It plays the role of collecting and balancing the different and opposing energies of Hod and Netzach, and also from Tiphereth above it, storing and distributing it throughout the world. It is likened to the ‘engine-room’ of creation.

The archangel of this sphere is Gabriel, and the Cherubim is the Angelic order. Yesod’s vice is Idleness, and its virtue is Independence. The spiritual experience is the Vision of the Machinery of the Universe. (Parts from Wikipedia retrieved 1 Feb 2010.) It is said that Yesod is the sephirah at which most people, who blindly follow religion without seeking their own understanding, will find heaven.


Yetzirah

Yetzirah is the third of four worlds in the Kabbalistic Tree of Life, following Atziluth and Briah. It is known as the “World of Formation.” It is also the location of the astral plane. Magick is done by creating liminal (between) space, in which one can gather energy to send to Yetzirah, allowing thought to manifest there as reality, which will then sort of trickle down to manifest in the physical universe (Assiah).

Within the Western mystery tradition, the different Sephiroth in this world are associated with the angels, and it is associated with the suit of swords in the occult tarot. (Parts from Wikipedia retrieved 1 Feb 2010.) Yetzirah, in my view, encompasses the sephiroth of Yesod, Netzach, Hod, Tiphareth, Chesed, and Geburah, though opinions vary.


Zelator

The Golden Dawn Zelator grade is considered the first true initiation grade in the Golden Dawn. It is the symbolic step into the Golden Dawn teachings and the initial sephirah of the Tree of Life, Malkuth. The grade is symbolized by the numbers 1=10. The word Zelator is Latin for “zealot” derived from the Greek word for “zeal.”

This grade is associated with the earth element and so it serves to create a sound foundation for learning and preparation for further spiritual transformations. This grade tends to weed out those that are not truly interested in spiritual alchemy because the teachings can be very transformational. (Mystic Wikia, retrieved 1 Feb 2010.)


Zodiac

The western zodiac encompasses twelve signs in astrology: Aries, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer, Leo, Virgo, Libra, Scorpio, Sagittarius, Capricorn, Aquarius, and Pisces. It is also the “planet” or mundane chakra for the sephirah of Chokmah on the Qabalistic tree of life.

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