Reminder: I’ve Moved!

May 31, 2014

Since I’ve gotten a few new followers lately, I wanted to post a reminder that this blog is no longer active — in fact, it may be going away in the future. Instead, I am now blogging at the Temple of the Earth and Stars, which is also where you can find links to my past podcasting activity as well as articles transcribed from most of my shows. I hope you’ll follow me over there, or keep in touch via social media (links to which can also be found on my website).

Thanks for your interest! 🙂
Oraia

New Podcast Episode and Change of Venue

August 21, 2011

Episode 35 of Media Astra Ac Terra is now available! As I explain in the episode, the more detailed show notes are going to be moving from this blog over to my new website at the Temple of the Earth and Stars. All of the old posts on this blog will remain available, but please visit the website for more up to date postings, or visit the podcast directly for individual episodes.

Blessings,
Oraia

Media Astra Ac Terra Episode 34

July 21, 2011

Episode 34 of Media Astra Ac Terra is now available!  This episode includes a look at the constellation of Boötes the Herdsman (and its bright star Arcturus) in the Astra segment, and in the Terra segment we learn about larimar! And in the main segment, I share some thoughts about the intersection of building a daily spiritual practice and crafting long-term strategies for dealing with stress.

In the introduction, I mentioned a great (great!) audiobook I’ve been listening to, called A Short History of Nearly Everything, by Bill Bryson.  The audiobook makes for very entertaining listening, but I’m sure the print version is great (!) as well. 🙂character for the fixed star Arcturus, aka Alchamech

As promised, here is the sigil/character for Arcturus, aka Alchamech, from Agrippa’s Three Books of Occult Philosophy:

The Terra segment on larimar was suggested by Meical abAwen, host of the Pagan podcast (and now blog) Earth & Magick.  Thanks, Meical!

In the main segment, I mentioned (and highly recommend) the book Meditation for the Love of It by Sally Kempton.  And I mentioned a specific set of qigong exercises I’ve been doing, called “Eight Pieces of Brocade.”  Here you can find a video of instructor Jesse Tsao demonstrating that sequence.

During the break, I played promos for Pennies in the Well and Lamyka’s Wiccan Podcast.  And at the end I mentioned the upcoming Pagan Podkin Supermoot in Salem, Massachusetts.  If you can make it, it sounds like it’ll be a great time!

Thanks for listening!
– Oraia Sphinx

Media Astra Ac Terra Episode 33

June 21, 2011

Episode 33 of Media Astra Ac Terra is now available!  This month, we take a look at the southern constellation of Centaurus in the Astra segment, and in the Terra segment we will learn about jade!  And in the main segment, I offer a contribution to Pagan Values Blogging and Podcasting Month, with a discussion of the value of engaging with the world.

I mentioned in the introduction that I released a short special episode between last month’s show and this one.  You can find that in the iTunes feed, or by following the direct link given above.  I also had a few announcements about interviews I’ve done recently, one for the Pagan Podcast Spotlight by Tim Titus of The Juggler, and one with Lamyka of Lamyka’s Wiccan Podcast.  I was on her June 14 episode, titled “Oraia of the Stars.” 🙂

Lamyka also pointed me to the Solar System Scope program online, which I really enjoy playing with.

In the Astra segment, I once again mentioned Vivian Robson’s book The Fixed Stars & Constellations in Astrology, as well as Agrippa’s Three Books of Occult Philosophy.  These are going to continue to be primary references for astrological and magical lore about the stars and constellations outside of the Zodiac, though I may not mention them specifically in the future.

And since the main segment was a contribution to the Pagan Values Blogging and Podcasting Month project, please visit their blog to see many more contributions, and consider creating your own!

During the break, I played a promo for Borealis Meditation, and a show bumper courtesy of Chris Orapello of The Infinite and the Beyond.

As always, thanks for listening, and I hope you enjoy the show.  :)
– Oraia Sphinx

Media Astra Ac Terra Special Episode #1

June 7, 2011

I present to you a special episode of Media Astra Ac Terra, offering the third installment of my PathWorking segment exploring the major cards of the tarot. This segment usually airs on the Kakophonos podcast, but you can also find the first two installments, for the Fool and the Magician, in the main segment of Episode 27 of this show. This is very much not a typical episode, but I hope you enjoy this look at the High Priestess card!

– Oraia Sphinx

Media Astra Ac Terra Episode 32

May 21, 2011

Episode 32 of Media Astra Ac Terra is now available!  Episode 32 takes a look at the two celestial Bears in the Astra segment, and in the Terra segment we will learn about labradorite!  And in the main segment, I share a couple of pieces of listener feedback concerning witchcraft, and share my thoughts on them.

In the Astra segment, I promised some links about how to tell time using the position of Ursa Major.  You can see the basics here, and at this other link you can find instructions for making a handy “star clock” that will tell you the time.  In that segment, I also included some material from Henry Cornelius Agrippa’s Three Books of Occult Philosophy, and mentioned Vivian Robson’s The Fixed Stars & Constellations in Astrology.

And that’s it for links and references in the segments; in between, I played a promo for New World Witchery, and a show bumper courtesy of Kakophonos.

As always, thanks for listening, and I hope you enjoy the show. 🙂
– Oraia Sphinx

Media Astra Ac Terra Episode 31

April 21, 2011

Media Astra Ac Terra Episode 31 is now available!  This episode is all about answering your questions.  From which astrological sign to call your own, through avoiding toxic minerals, to when you can call yourself a witch, we take a wild ride through a number of different topics in this episode.  And one lucky listener/questioner wins a prize!

The question in the Astra segment was a followup to Episode 28, which was about the effect of precession on the Zodiac, and whether your Sun sign is still really your Sun sign.  :)  If you haven’t listened to that one yet, it gives a lot more information than my summary here.

In the Terra segment, I promised a link to a list of potentially toxic minerals and stones that you don’t want to add to elixirs or drinking water.  This article on the Witch School website is the best summary I’ve found so far – but again, better safe than sorry when it comes to things you put into your body.

Also in the Terra segment, I mentioned the Borealis Meditation podcast, with our friend Kathleen at the helm.  If you can’t get enough of minerals and geology, give her show a listen!

In the main show, I mentioned a book I’ve brought up several times in the past: Freedom is a Two-Edged Sword, by John Whiteside (Jack) Parsons.  It really is an awesome little book that has been very influential on my thinking.

During the break, I played promos for Pennies in the Well and Iron Powaqa Radio.  And at the end of the show, I announced my new Etsy shop; again, if there is a particular astrological symbol you would like to see sooner rather than later, let me know and I’ll make sure I get to it asap.  I also mentioned my planned visit to Salem in September for the Pagan Podkin Super Moot!  I’m looking forward to meeting podcasters and listeners alike – let me know if you’re going to be there, too!

If you have any questions or comments about the show, you can email me, or send a  message via Facebook or Twitter.

Thanks for listening!
– Oraia Sphinx

Media Astra Ac Terra Episode 30

March 21, 2011

Media Astra Ac Terra Episode 30 is now available!  In this episode, we look at Draco the Dragon in the Astra segment, and in the Terra segment we learn about apophyllite!  Then in the main segment, I share some of my thoughts about the recent tragedy in Japan, and the search for meaning in suffering and natural disasters.

In both the introduction and the main segment, I mentioned Peter Dybing’s donation page, collecting for Doctors Without Borders (Medecins Sans Frontieres.)  Or, you can visit the organization’s page directly by following this link.  In  my discussion in the main segment, I referenced a couple of books that touched on Pagan approaches to theodicy:

A World Full of Gods, by John Michael Greer
Beyond the Burning Times, by Gus diZerega (whose name I may have mispronounced; if so, I apologize!)

Another book I didn’t mention by name, but which is a good resource for understanding concepts like theodicy, is An Introduction to the Philosophy of Religion, by Brian Davies.  It’s a textbook that I’ve used mostly for reference to refresh my memory about different concepts I’ve encountered in other places, but it’s pretty readable.  As with most resources related to philosophy of religion, it’s heavily Christian-influenced, but the basic principles still offer a lot of food for thought.

But getting back to the earlier part of the show, here is the link I mentioned in the Astra segment: a reproduction of the image of Draco and the Two Bears depicted by Gaius Julius Hyginus, referred to by Agrippa in his Second Book of Occult Philosophy.

Embedded in this post you can see pictures of my two apophyllite specimens; click for larger versions.  I couldn’t manage to really capture the details of the crystal cluster at left, but you can get an idea of the two very different shapes between that one and the picture below.  The color on the cluster shades from green up to clear, although at this angle, the green shows through the clear tops of the crystals.  And I think the sharp crystal growing in white stilbite came out pretty well, although the photo still doesn’t really do the color justice.  They’re both about the same size overall, by the way, which you can gauge using my fingertip propping up the crystal cluster. 🙂

During the break, I played promos for Borealis Meditation and The Infinite and the Beyond.  And don’t forget, you have until the end of March to send me your questions for the April Q&A episode and be entered in the mystery drawing!  You can email me, or send your question via Facebook or Twitter.  Just please let me know that you’re submitting it as a question for the April episode.

Thanks for listening!
– Oraia Sphinx

Media Astra Ac Terra Episode 29

February 21, 2011

Episode 29 of Media Astra Ac Terra is now available!  In this episode, we look at Cassiopeia in the Astra segment, and in the Terra segment we will finish up our two-part look at chalcedony!  And in the main segment, I talk about fear, and how we deal with it (or not) in our lives and our magick.

In the introduction, I announced the re-opening of the call for short story submissions for Etched Offerings: Voices from the Cauldron of Story by Misanthrope Press.  Submissions will remain open until the end of April, 2011, and you can find the updated guidelines here.

I also announced that in April, I’d like to do a Q&A episode – so if you have questions you’d like to contribute, please get them in by the end of March!  You can email me, or send them via Facebook or Twitter.  Everyone who sends in a question will be entered in a drawing for a mystery prize, to be announced later. 🙂

In the main segment, I drew quite a bit on a 5 CD set of audio recordings by Pema Chodron, called The Fearless Heart.  I also made mention of a book called Cutting Through Spiritual Materialism by Chogyam Trungpa, Rinpoche.  I highly recommend both to anyone, whether you are interested in Buddhism or not.

During the break, I played promos for New World Witchery and Lakefront Pagan Voice.

Thanks for listening, and I hope you enjoy the show!
– Oraia Sphinx

Media Astra Ac Terra Episode 28

January 21, 2011

Episode 28 of Media Astra Ac Terra is now available for download!  In this episode, we look at backyard astronomy in the Astra segment, with an emphasis on naked-eye and binocular astronomy to point out that you don’t need a telescope to explore the night sky.  Then in the Terra segment, we start a two-part look at chalcedony, which has many beautiful and well-loved varieties that you may not realize are all the same mineral. And in the main segment, I tackle the recent resurgence of the “astrology is wrong because the constellations don’t line up with the signs anymore” issue.

I mentioned quite a few books in the Astra segment:

A Walk Through the Heavens by Milton Heifetz and Wil Tirion
National Audubon Society Field Guide to the Night Sky
Binocular Stargazing by Mike D. Reynolds
Turn Left at Orion by Guy Consolmagno and Dan M. Davis

I also mentioned my favorite astronomy-related computer program, Stellarium, as well as a program by NASA called SkyWatch, which can help you figure out where to look in order to spot the International Space Station.

And here’s an example of the over-simplified reporting of the “news” about the zodiac that I address in the main segment, in case you missed it last week. 🙂

Last but not least, I played promos for Pennies in the Well and Kakophonos.

Thanks for listening, and I hope you enjoy the show!
– Oraia Sphinx