The Great Wheel of the Year has turned again bringing us to Samhain and the thin veil. There are Jack-o-lanterns with glinting eyes and bundles of corn hung by doors and leaves rustling when there is no wind out to be seen. There is a magic and mystery about this time of year that makes it especially well loved by Witches and Pagans everywhere , but still it can be a bitter sweet time when there are those we care about that are no longer here with us , when we add new candles and photos to our Altars that were not there the year before. This year we of the Coven of the Catta add a new photo to all of our altars as this is the first Samhain since the passing of Lord Shawnus Merlin Belarion Elder High Priest of the COC. He loved this time of year , both the outer trappings of the lights and decorations as well as the much deeper inner meanings to be found in Nature, it’s changing Tides and Cycles and the Mystery of the Summerland. So this post is dedicated to Lord Shawnus and in memory of him , a Dear Friend , Teacher , and High Priest of the Goddess. May the Peace of the Lady and Her Consort be with him and may he know he is remembered and remembered well. In keeping with this , the Coven of the Catta will be dedicating our All Hallows ritual this year to Lord Shawnus as well. The ritual led by Lady Alsace and Lady Ember will honor the final harvest festival of the year and the passing of the mantle from the Goddess to Her Consort as per our tradition, as well as many others, but it also will be a time for us to remember and honor the man and High Priest who taught us all. Blessed Be , Aren
It is with great sadness that I write this post in memory of my dear friend and teacher Lord Shawnus Merlin Belarion Elder 3rd* High Priest of the Coven of the Catta. I received a call from Lady Ember Willow Hawk 3rd* High Priestess of the COC letting me know that he had passed into the Summerland on the 1st of July 2015 on the eve of the Thunder Full Moon. To those of us who knew him we were Blessed to have in him a loyal and true friend who was steadfast and always there when you needed him. His sense of humor and wit , though sometimes risqué , was always in good spirit and he truly believed in the tenets of compassion and kindness. He lived an incredible life , receiving not only his three degrees into the Coven Of the Catta and serving as it’s Elder High Priest for the past three decades but also receiving Tibetan Buddhist empowerments and initiations into Vajrakilaya , Avalokitesvara , White Tara and Phowa . He told me once he had been a Priest in three religions , Buddhism , Wicca and also having received initiation many years ago as a Priest of Anubis. Despite all of that , or perhaps because of it , he was a kind and gentle man who after working his whole life in the medical field upon retirement due to a persistent illness that he constantly battled was devoted to caring for the land and for the creatures great and small that lived upon it. He was fiercely intelligent and could talk for hours on any given subject that you could imagine and shared his knowledge freely and generously with so many of us. He worked tirelessly to preserve the Coven of the Catta and it’s teachings ensuring they were passed on to others and are alive and well and thriving. Due to him the founders of the Coven of the Catta , Dr Frederick Lamotte Santee and Lady Phoebe will never be forgotten , through his books and blog posts people all around the world have read about them and their story. Now it is up to us , we who knew him and called him friend and all those who have followed his blogs and writings to preserve and carry on the memory of a true Priest of the Goddess ,with whom he now rests. He is and will be greatly missed. BB , Aren
I found these old 1971 BBC radio broadcasts interviewing Patricia and Arnold Crowther which are fascinating, interesting and somewhat spooky as the radio broadcasts on Witchcraft and other forms of Occultism were from back in that time. To put this into perspective 1971 is when I graduated from High School so it is 44 years ago. Embedded below is part one and the rest play as each is over. To quote from the YT sitesitesite – ”
To quote from the YT site – “A series of 6 twenty minute programmes on Witchcraft broadcast by BBC Radio Sheffield, which commenced on 6th January 1971.The series was presented by Patricia and Arnold Crowther and was produced by Peter Hawkins.”
Enjoy and Blessed Be !
Today is the birthday of Lady PAN, and as the title says she would have been 94 had she lived this long instead of passing 5 December 2005, so this December she will be gone for 10 years. I loved that Lady, my Teacher of Witchcraft. I am going to try to paste into this post a short bio from a Word doc which is in the booklets I have written about the Coven of the Catta.
Lady Phoebe Athena Nimue
Edna Jane Kishbaugh Williams
© 2009 Coven of the Catta / Gary Lee Hoke
Born: 13 April 1921 Berwick, Pennsylvania
Died: 5 December 2005 Berwick, Pennsylvania
Parents: Edgar and Mary Slusser Kishbaugh (deceased)
Brothers: Ethan and Ralph Kisbaugh (deceased)
Husband: Dale Williams Deceased 2/22/1998
Funeral: Wesley United Methodist Church, Nescopeck, Pa.
Burrial: Pine Grove Cemetery, Wanut Street, Berwick, Pa.
Soulmate: Dr. Frederick LaMotte Santee Deceased 4/11/1980
(See separate biography of Dr. Santee for more about his life)
She met Dr. Santee in 1956 and was his receptionist-secretary at the Santee Medical office and Santee Memorial Library in Wapwallopen, Pa. She wrote a column in the local newspaper called “The Witches Kettle”. She also wrote and edited a local publication entitled “The Cat’s Tale”. In 1967 she and Dr. Santee and others were initiated into the Witchcraft Lineage of the Coven of the Horsa by the late Sybil Leek from the New Forest area in England. Dr. Santee had previously been initiated into various magickal and Wiccan lineages from England, Germany, Italy, and France including the Golden Dawn, Rosicrucians, and the Illuminati. She has said that she remembers previous lives, one of which was as the wife of an Indian chief who lived along the Susquehanna many years ago.
At that point she (as Lady Phoebe Athena Nimue) and Dr. Santee (as Lord Merlin) then founded the Coven of the Catta in Wapwallopen which continued until Santee’s death on 4/11/1980. The Covenstead was originally in the basement of his house where he practiced medicine. Then next to his house he built a library which was stocked with over 20,000 books including tomes from the 1500s, books of the Greek and Roman classics, and an occult section. In the back of the bookhouse was a room used as the temple of the Coven of the Catta.
A year later in 1981 students from the Harrisburg area, following an ad in a national Wiccan paper, contacted and met Lady Phoebe and the two remaining witches of her coven. The bookhouse had been robbed and a fire set to cover the robbery, and the temple was piled full of the doctor’s stuff recovered from his house which had been sold. We cleaned all that up, repainted the three circles on the floor, and started learning from her and doing rituals with students from the local area and from the Harrisburg area. We would drive almost 100 miles 8 times or more a year to hold ritual and for me to copy her Books of Shadows. The Coven of the Catta continues to this day.
And here are some other pictures someone shared with me years ago from his Aunt who lived in Wapwallopen, but i do not know her name to attribute them to her, if she is even alive.
One of the elder HPSs in our Coven, Lady Alsace Isa Brie, was born in Australia and grew up a “bush baby” out in the wilds playing with lizards and such. When she grew older some Gypsies were passing through and she learned the Artes of reading palms, tea leaves and regular playing cards. She is amazing and starts “reading” you as soon as you come in the door, then reads your palm as the tea is brewing, then you have a cup of that tea with her until, like you wrote, a teaspoon is left with the leaves, which she then reads. BTW I remember somewhere some small booklet i saw one time that explained what the shapes mean in the leaves. Then she does a reading with her regular playing cards, the whole session lasting about 1.5-2 hours. Since i am her HPT she never takes money from me, but using the bathroom to refresh before my 2 hour drive home when i can i hide a $20 spot somewhere on the sink LOL. Blessings Sarah and TY for this post which i will link in an upcoming post.
Enjoy, and Blessed Be !
Originally posted on Blau Stern Schwarz Schlonge:
Photo of my right hand Copyright GLHoke 2015
Here is a great post from Sarah Anne Lawless on the old arte of Tasseomancy which is the reading of one’s fortune by tea leaves and she also writes on reading with regular playing cards http://sarahannelawless.com/2015/04/02/tasseomancy/#comment-15975
And here is my comment on her blog post –
One of the elder HPSs in our Coven, Lady Alsace Isa Brie, was born in Australia and grew up a “bush baby” out in the wilds playing with lizards and such. When she grew older some Gypsies were passing through and she learned the Artes of reading palms, tea leaves and regular playing cards. She is amazing and starts “reading” you as soon as you come in the door, then reads your palm as the tea is brewing, then you have a cup of that tea with her until, like you wrote, a teaspoon is left…
View original 100 more words
After no sleep at 4am I spontaneously drove north to the Berwick / Nescopeck / Wapwallopen area. I stopped half way up that two hour trip and took an hour long cat nap in a parking lot of an abandoned business distribution center.
Unfortunately i was not able to meet with two of the High Priestesses in the Coven d/t their schedules. I did meet with an old coven member for awhile before she had her son, whom i had never met before, take her to a doctor’s appointment to have her new pacemaker checked out, something i did of course for 11 years. Her home health aid was there and Lady Persephone and I were able to talk Witchcraft openly in from of the aid and the son for a short time, then i moved on.
So i decided to visit Council Cup mountain again after a trip to Dr Santee’s grave. Its a weird angle backing into the driveway to the gate of the graveyard especially with two hills on the road and people driving 55mph there, so i drove past to find a turn around for a safer back in a pull out.
Well on a road i have never gone that far down before I saw a sign for a campground, so i drove down it to check it out in case it had a supply store with some local history booklets or whatever. There was no one there but a guy drove by who does maintenance there and contacted the campground owner who shortly arrived and let me in. Wow, did i find the “mother load” of information on the area. Not only did he know and doctor with ole Doc Santee, but he knew all his nurses and librarians. AND he was a collector of not only local AmerIndian artifacts but native artifacts from around the world. He graciously took me to his house which was right across the street from someone i knew in town mentioned above.
Yes i am being rather obscure here because i want to protect his privacy and the privacy of all involved because as mentioned in previous posts there are still plenty of “Santee tourists” up there who have broken into and stolen stuff from the old Bookhouse, which is getting a new roof and i assume mostly gutted and being turning into i do not know what. Santee’s house, from what the owner and his wife told me, has been mostly refurbished already. There were workers on the roof when i was there, rebuilding it in the single digit temperatures with a wind chill of in the minus signs amazingly. I missed the owner twice as when i drove by twice he was away getting more wood at the lumberyard. It is what it is.
So, this new friend and his wife as i said invited me into their house, let me rest, served me tea and food, let me wash up in their bathroom, etc. They trusted me as i had already at the campground told him i was the spiritual son of Santee and High Priest of the Coven of the Catta which does still exist. It turns out he wanted to buy the Santee property and turn it into a museum to Santee, but Bill the former cop got it first somehow.
Bottom line – and i am keeping this close to the cuff. I would estimate a collection of 30,000 pieces worth 3 million(?). Most is in his museum which is Heavy Secured so don’t even thing about it because he is ex special op and if you would step one millimeter within his door uninvited you would be dead in less than a few seconds.
So, i have met the most amazing friend, who does not want anything from me except the money for what i bought and have on hold, and i can trade Tibetan Buddhist artifacts for that since he has been to Tibet and climbed the 108 steps up to the Potala. Weather is sunny and above freezing Monday so will text him Sunday to confirm meeting up.
That’s my life.
Postscript – no answer to my emails or call so i guess that is not going to happen until later in the week when the temps are above freezing and there is no snow/sleet/freezing rain to deal with.