The full moon of 28th March 2021, marked 10 years since my initiation into the Old Craft by Cassandra Latham Jones.
Image – John Isaac
For me, tuition in the Old Ways was more intensive than it is for members within a group as I have lived with my teacher and we were rarely apart, so I received constant tuition and discussion. The last ten years may have brought challenges and hard lessons, however they included a multitude of wonderful moments that made it all worthwhile.
To mark this special anniversary Cassandra decided it was time for me to receive my final initiation, an equivalent to a third degree within the Wiccan path.
On February’s full moon, I visited Men an Tol, where once again, I was overlooked by a bright full Moon. I performed a ritual of passing significant items through the holed stone a designated number of times to energise them while Cassandra observed nearby. I then paused and stood in the moon’s rays, feeling her energy while expressing my devotion.
From that moment on, Cassandra instructed me to record my dreams and sent me on four Quests to locations of my choice.
I collected an item from each location and on the final Quest, I realized each one related to the elements, water, air, earth and fire. Cassandra stated that the directions were also significant.
The requirement of a ‘fast’ for a period of time was undertaken abstaining from stimulants, plus an added habitual action that I would find challenging.
During the weekend of my initiation, Cassandra instructed me to create a magical item related to all the locations I visited. There is a specific ritual connected to the creation of it that I followed during a designated planetary hour. I combined a blend of corresponding oils and herbs, placing them in a muslin bath pouch for my ritual bath. I cleansed and blessed all items that would be utilised for the ceremony.
On the evening of the initiation, we left home at 8pm to visit Boscawen-un stone circle where the first part of my initiation rite would take place, just as it had ten years ago. The difference on this occasion was the invisibility of the Moon shrouded in dark clouds on a dry evening, accompanied by a stiff breeze. This did not surprise me as Cassandra informed me it would be a ‘darker’ ceremony, therefore the absence of moonlight had great significance. I attempted to wear a hat that evening but the breeze repeatedly removed it, therefore I accepted that it was not required.
Cassandra and I used our bull roarers to call the spirits of place, she then instructed me to repeat a statement at each stone until I completed the circle. Cassandra stood by the Elder tree to observe and I slowly made my way around the circle laying my hands upon each stone, repeating the words, then moving on in the darkness, making my way over the tussocks and uneven ground. When I completed the circle, I turned to walk towards the King stone at the centre and in the darkness it seemed to transform into a tall hooded figure. I approached it and as I did so it reverted back to its original form and I rested my forehead against it, connecting with the energies of the site. After a while, I laid against the incline of the King stone feeling the breeze that rushed over my body and pressed me against the granite.
On our return to the cottage, Cassandra prepared the hearth and surrounding area, while I had my ritual bath in candlelight. I reclined in the water and contemplated on the impressions I received at the stone circle and the step I was about to take.
I put on my robe and awaited Cassandra’s call.
The initiation ritual was a wonderful experience and the initiatory words had such potency. Even though my familiar Clutterbuck had entered the spirit world only 5 weeks previously,
I felt his presence with us as he never failed to join us for celebrations in the physical world and I knew he would not miss this one.
When the initiation ritual was over, Cassandra hugged me and stated that her job was done. We celebrated with good old Cornish mead. Never before had she taught anyone as intensively over this amount of time.
We have both worked well together over the years and will continue to do so.
I would like to express my gratitude to Cassandra for being such a caring, understanding and patient tutor. She has taught me invaluable skills and assisted me in developing a deep connection not only with Cornwall but also with the place and community of my birth.
Whatever the future holds and wherever life takes me, her teachings will remain and are now a strong aspect of who I am.
Feedback from Cassandra Latham Jones: “Congratulations Laetitia! A worthy, hard working and fully fledged Wisewoman. You have remarkable psychic abilities – that definitely is your forte”.