It has been drizzling and sprinkling since I got up. But I didn't let that deter me from one of my daily walks. As I wandered about, I found myself focusing on things that don't matter and internally quarreling with myself.
So, I performed my death meditation. As I was crossing a street, a car randomly crossed my notice. Instantly, my mind generated another possible death: burning alive, trapped in a car. My thoughts kept trying to divert to the idea that I could somehow survive. I realized this was a sign of internal discomfort, and simply renewed the progression of the visualized sequences of death ending with being stuck in a burning car. After the fourth progression, stillness ensued and I wandered back home in a very good mood.
I walked out into the garden, and gazed again at the first flowers of the pomegranate plant to bloom. It made me grin somewhat.
Then I turned and looked at the grapevines that sit on northern end of the backyard.
A thought intruded initially, a string of words that I initially ignored:
“First fruits for the Thrice-Born King.”
I tried to watch a movie, and mostly enjoyed it. But every time I stilled my mind again, those words returned again. After the movie, I found myself gazing and watching the soft drizzle of rainwater on the grapevines and the words popped into my head again.
I decided to do as I'd been bid. Some time ago, I'd moved the mask I used to represent Dionysos with to another altar area. It's a Venetian mask, and I was told when I bought it that it would be worn by someone dressing somewhat like a fool. I'd come, years ago, to decide it probably wasn't quite right for Dionysos.
More recently, I saw something which made me reconsider that. In fact, at the time I recall grinning and thinking about the mask: “no reason not to use it the way I always did before.” I will eventually get a mask the size of a full face, but until then... Why hold off on what you love?
I wandered back over to the vines after placing the mask aside, and whispered: “I am taking leaves and fruit for Dionysos, Lord of the Vine.” I plucked off two bunches of unripened fruit, and about seven leaves.
But why stop there? So I added a small bowl of cool water (I appear to be out of milk, but cool water works just as well in my opinion) on the left side, and a small container of honey on the right:
(Note: the above picture was taken before I dedicated the materials to Dionysos. As a matter of discipline and principle, I will never flash pictures of a charged altar or consecrated magical tools. Sigils are another matter.)
Then I lit the incense, read two Orphic hymns and let the solemn reverie sweep over me. I know what I'll be keeping up this summer. Of course, it's missing something. Later tonight I'll dedicate give some liquor before I head to bed. Wine may certainly traditional, but my divinations have never revealed Dionysos having a problem with gifts of whiskey. And I happen to love whiskey, so I give what I love.
Be seeing you,
PS. Brother Valentine has a piece up on Disinfo. You know you want to read it. Congrats, Valentine, and best of luck with future articles and rocking those that don't know you like I do!
[EDIT]: Added some helpful links.