Tenth Anniversary as Village Wisewoman

Spring Equinox 2020 marks the tenth anniversary since Cassandra Latham Jones handed over her business of Village Wisewoman to me.

I had previously worked as a qualified holistic therapist and was therefore accustomed to dealing with clients, however with this alternative way of working, clients are dealt with in a different way.

The consultations providing guidance can be similar to counselling (in which I now have a Diploma) as clients contact us with various dilemmas in their lives. We discuss appropriate methods or courses of action that could help them.

Cassandra has a unique way of working and has built a good reputation which means she is a tough ‘act to follow’. I was a Cornwall resident for only ten months when I embarked on these new pursuits and local residents did not know me well, but I had adequate experience to provide the services required. Over the years I have settled into the village community by frequenting our local Inn, some of the church services and village events. I have also performed at local festivals in West Penwith.

In a short period of time I developed an organized correspondence system when dealing with clients. I have a selection of email folders for: inquiries, readings, distant readings, spells, charms, handfastings, rites of passage, feedback, property cleansings, wart charming, Wisewomen walks and workshops. Notifying a client of the list of items required when working with them is much easier now and I converse with the confidence that comes with experience.

Cassandra taught me to do my own business accounts, which is quite an easy task with a small business. I admire her for managing this despite her having ‘dyscalculia’. It was less of a problem for me as I am good with numbers and nowadays modern technology lessens the burden of mathematics.

I understand why a ‘code of ethics’ is necessary and it is not good practice to cast spells for clients to influence others against their will. These spells can have huge repercussions and I have witnessed the consequences for others who cast spells for selfish desires without forethought.

Learning the process of creating charms has been enjoyable and is reminiscent of past activities when I have used cross-stitch and crochet skills during childhood and adolescence. I have skills for intricate needlework and the corresponding ingredients for each charm still holds a fascination for me as each one is unique to the client. For example,  when I construct two fertility charms neither is identical in appearance or their contents.

Another aspect where needlework skills come to the fore is in creating clothes for hearth dolls which inspired me to create more clothing for other dolls with uncanny likenesses and purposes. After observing this activity, Cassandra commented that my work with dolls is one of my outstanding talents.

I have witnessed many Tarot readings and I know Cassandra’s Tarot cards so well, I am able to provide readings from them myself if she were unable to do so. The psychic impressions and messages I receive during a consultation compliment her readings and never fail to add to the advice given. Our distant readings for clients who are unable to see us in person have proven to be extremely accurate and given guidance and help to many all over the world.

The Handfastings we provide are wonderful occasions. We have taken on the role of Celebrants at wondrous sacred sites and more unusual venues. My past ceremonial training comes to the fore when setting up a sacred space although the words I use have changed, providing a deeper connection to the ancient land around us.

We prefer a couple to be in a relationship at least a year before taking this important step, some had been legally married a considerable length of time. Others had their spiritual ceremony with us, but attend a registry office before or after the ceremony if they require a legal contract.

I would love to experience more of these ceremonies on beaches or by the sea which in my opinion, adds to the romance of the occasion.

Our property cleansings are quite an adventure, from modern houses to period properties, cottages, hotels and public houses. The history and varied lives people once led can leave residual energies that seep into the foundations of buildings which can affect them in startling ways. The spirits of deceased owners can form an attachment with their former properties that they have difficulty in releasing. Some spirits are harmless and the present occupiers are quite comfortable with their presence, however there are others that can cause problems and require guidance to move them on.

I have experienced on many occasions the remarkable difference of energy and atmosphere within a property after cleansing, during our return visits.

Spell casting is an exciting aspect of our work, particularly when a specific time is set for a client to work along with the practitioner. There have been occasions when the required result has occurred within 24 hours and also instances where a period of time has passed before reaching a successful outcome. Throughout this past year I have worked with one particular client casting many spells for an ongoing legal case and each spell produced a successful outcome for each stage of the process.

Our workshops have been successful as many are intrigued by the work we do and enjoy spending time with us to experience this.

We have met some wonderful individuals and had many fascinating discussions. It is also heartening to hear feedback on how the experience has changed their lives in a positive way.

I have learnt more information during our ‘Walks with Wisewomen’ as Cassandra repeats the folklore and stories of various sites on each occasion. She is delighted with the way our work has become ‘second nature’ to me. It is not an easy path and I have been severely tested throughout the years. Cassandra is also pleased with the way I advertise and network to reach more people who need assistance and that the business has grown considerably compared to the period of time when she worked alone.

So there you have it…..ten years of organisation and work within the business of Village Wisewoman. It is so important to have an occupation one enjoys that does not lose its fascination or become mundane!

I thank Cassandra for her patience and tuition over the last eleven years. Her methods are often unorthodox and there were times I did not understand them, or how it would benefit me, until I put this tuition into action. This scene from the movie Karate Kid is a good example of what I am referring to:

I look forward to the next ten years of becoming older and wiser as I continue assisting our community!

Ten Years in Cornwall

The 12th June 2018 marked the 10th anniversary of my move to Cornwall. The life I visualised here is completely different to the one I now have.

Living near the sea, you discover the elements of rain, wind and storms intensify. Cornwall may not be as cold as other parts of the UK (although our last winter was a harsh one) and frosts occur less here. The cost of living is rising everywhere, but in tourist areas, prices also rise during the holiday seasons and tourists pay the higher prices for the short time they are here, however residents are required to pay these high prices throughout the season. Work opportunities increase during the summer, but lessen in the winter when the cold weather means an increase in utility bills.

Taking a vacation in Cornwall is easier than living here. During a vacation you have free time to visit beaches and places of interest, but when one is trying to earn a living and survive, pleasure visits to beaches or sites rarely occur.

On a positive note I have enjoyed my work as Wisewoman throughout the last 9 years and learnt so much from Cassandra Latham Jones throughout this fascinating and testing journey. Working with the land and sea with their powerful unpredictable energies has been challenging as tests from the ‘powers that be’ are severe with obstacles constantly placed in one’s path. It takes strength of character and determination to overcome these and continue………as the spirits are saying ……..”how much do you want this???” Cassandra admits she has been tough with me throughout this time and admires my tenacity.  She also revealed there were others who in the past desired to learn from her but were unable to withstand the tests and tasks given.

My experience and training in ceremonial magic while in Kent has been useful for conducting Rites of Passage. Cassandra is happy to leave what she refers to as ‘arm waving’ to me for setting up a sacred space for ceremonies.

The consultations we provide together work well, the moment just before a reading while Cassandra connects with a client’s energies, I tune in to connect with spirit presences around them. While Cassandra shuffles the Tarot cards I provide the client with a description and any messages a spirit may wish to pass on. Cassandra then lays out the Tarot spread and on many occasions the same message has appeared within the cards giving the client double confirmation. I have witnessed many readings by Cassandra over the years becoming familiar with her cards and own an identical Tarot deck with the ability to also provide readings from them.

Property cleansing needs a huge amount of work, particularly when they are inhabited by a variety of residents over time,(more-so with period properties). The energies from traumatic events are absorbed within the foundations of these buildings and can have a profound effect on any future residents. In hotels and public houses/inns the energies can intensify and affect the smooth running of businesses. We have had many successful outcomes from this work.

Curse breaking is another area of intense work. Many clients consult us about this problem and Cassandra has a unique and powerful method for dealing with these that she has taught me.

Wart charming is a service that at first I was rather sceptical of, it was difficult to understand how it could possibly work. Even now I cannot explain it but have witnessed the success of this process with clients.

I have constructed many charms over the years and had a high success rate with fertility charms in particular. It delights me to think I have assisted in creating new life and brought happiness to others.

I continue to provide Holistic Services and have taught Reiki courses  which benefit clients greatly, particularly as this practice is more about spiritual and emotional development of the person rather than a complementary therapy.  I have assisted a wide range of clients including the terminally ill and also pet owners who work with stressed animals.

My Crisis and Trauma counselling services have also come to the fore as often clients are affected by religious cults and childhood abuse. They do not realize how past trauma can affect their everyday lives as adults, even though it happened long ago.

Walks with Wisewomen is an enjoyable aspect of our work as it enables us to visit and enjoy the sites with our clients. I have, over time learnt the folklore associated with them by listening to Cassandra repeating the information on each visit. We also find out more about our clients as we converse with them while walking to and from the sites.

Our: ‘Old Ways’ workshops have been successful during the last few years. I suggested hosting them and Cassandra was at first a little reticent, but as we had many inquiries about them, she agreed to try. The workshops have gone from strength to strength covering five subjects. We have met some fabulous people who experienced some extraordinary occurrences while they were with us. The preparation and workshops themselves are hard work but also energizing and satisfying on a deeper level.

I have learnt so much since being here and my main lesson is that life is indeed unpredictable. One can plan for the future to a certain extent but unforeseen circumstances can create sudden changes that can have incredible impact on one’s life bringing positive or negative outcomes.

I have also learnt that being successful in work and within a community brings rivalries, competitiveness and jealousy from some, who will then project dissatisfaction with themselves and their lives onto another. When a person experiences this level of pettiness it is vital to remember that these people, by their treatment of you, are validating that you are exceptionally good at what you do. If you were not successful or talented, negative people would not bother with you. When a person moves into a new community, they are on ‘foreign territory’ and therefore vulnerable to predators and bullies. There are however, genuine good-hearted people in a community who will do what they can to assist, especially if they were once in the same position themselves.

Cassandra Latham Jones falls into this category and has assisted me in so many ways.

I have integrated socially by attending festivals and utilising my talents as  musician and dancer.  I have also met some kind, thoughtful and talented individuals. The residents of St Buryan village have been particularly welcoming and now consider me part of their community.

My time here has  been  a catalyst of creativity as Cassandra and I, along with my son Rhys formed our: Guise team Boekka which features Penkevyll the Lands End ‘Oss. Our team has performed for 8 years and we have introduced: Morvargh my Sea ‘Oss as a recent addition. To top it all, my idea of Cassandra, myself and Penkevyll the ‘Oss, meeting Phil and Vivien Larcher and their Mari Lwyd at the Museum of Witchcraft and Magic on Samhain 2014, has evolved into a fantastic event entitled:  The Dark Gathering!

Now that I have lived in Cornwall 10 years, I am no longer a ‘newbie’. The local community has witnessed how difficult it has been for me and the obstacles I have overcome. I am sure certain individuals could not have withstood or endured a fraction of what they have directed my way, but that is par for the course.  The positives far outweigh the negatives and I am still here…….

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