Setting the Right Example

By Isabella @TheWandCarver

Instagram:  @thewandcarver

As_Time_Goes_By_cast

As Time Goes By cast ~ google images

The last time I recall “global warming” mentioned on a television soap or any other kind of programme was in the late 80’s and very early 90’s.  Global warming was mentioned at least twice on the northern soap, Coronation Street [once it was mentioned in the Rover’s Return [pub]… where most folk would go just to have a crafty pint and forget all else], and then I remember it being mentioned on As Time Goes By, the lovely and funny comedy with Dame Judy Dench in the leading role of a woman whom, after 38 years, is reunited with her lover from 1953.  It would seem I can’t recall if it was ever mentioned again after that, but the thing is, I do remember how it stood out to me then.  As it still does now.  And the lack of it being mentioned on soaps and other programmes these days.  I could just be watching the wrong things, possibly? Stay with me here, I have a point to make.

Another thing I have been noticing is that there are plastic straws everywhere on the soaps.  In cups on the bar [Hollyoaks], in some character’s drinks cups [Coronation Street, Gemma], and everybody in each soap I watch has a takeaway coffee in a plastic-lined paper cup with a plastic top over it at some point on every programme [EastEnders, Hollyoaks, and Coronation Street].  And not one mention of global warming, full stop.  I think by now you might have cottoned on to where I’m going with this…

Soaps don’t always get every detail included about issues which affect our lives, however, they do, in the short amount of time they have to work with, do absolutely get points across and pull at your heartstrings at the same time…whether it is to do with a young man stabbed to death just steps from his home [Shakil, EastEnders], a young girl dying from infection she got from self-harming [Lily, Hollyoaks], or when a young man whom appeared to have everything, including an ex-girlfriend carrying his child and a new business decided it was time to give everything away and take his own life without a word [Aidan, Coronation Street].  It is what soaps have always done and still do, better and better every year, and that is to bring to national attention what is going on and how this particular village and its people got through it, yes, even if it is only a make-believe village. If you paid attention, there were many good lessons to be learned from them and of course, always a number to call if these issues were affecting you or someone you know. I am sure that “Aidan” did not die in vain but most likely saved a number of lives by his untimely demise.  I hope so.

hessian shopping bag

One of my hessian shopping bags

So, why not global warming?  If you can touch on issues such as self-harm, stabbings, suicides, racism, LGBT rights and a plethora of other issues , why not climate change?  Or at the very least, get rid of all the single-use plastics everyone carries on using on each episode.  Hey, I do have to mention with pride, however, that a few days ago as I watched EastEnders, Kat Slater Moon walked into Stacy’s kitchen with a hessian shopping bag instead of a plastic carrier bag!  I wanted to jump through the screen and give her a high-5!! Of course, that would have ended my telly, so I didn’t.  Still, I thought, it is a start!

Some might say I am asking television producers and soap writers to “brainwash” their viewers.  I don’t think so.  What I do think is that in time, others like myself are going to get a bit disjointed over seeing our actors in our soaps toting around plastic like it’s still 1980 and even then, we knew better.  Still, we had more time back then than we do now and maybe if our television programmes and soaps had reflected what we should be doing to get on the right track we woudn’t be in the desparation we’re in now.  Let’s see some changes.  Setting a good example is something every one of us can do, even the soaps.

I hope you enjoyed my article.  If you see the merit in it, please feel free to share via the social media buttons below and give it a like.  I also love comments so feel free to write. I try to answer in a timely manner.  Many thanks for your time in reading and warmest blessings to all whom this way wander x

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A Beginner’s Understanding of Ogham Divination, Part Nine

By Isabella @TheWandCarver

Instagram:  @thewandcarver

Ogham Coll

Hazel Coll Ogham ~ photo by i.macy

The ninth lunar month of the Celtic calendar is from  5th August to 1st September.  The tree for this lunar month is Hazel and Hazel’s Ogham alphabet is “Coll”, which is also the 9th consonant of the Ogham alphabet.  Nine is a very sacred number to the Coll Ogham and to the Hazel tree.  This number will come into your divination with the Ogham frequently.  There is a tale of the Secret Salmon [the salmon being one of the animals sacred to the Hazel].  This legend see the salmon swimming under the overhanging Hazel tree, and he ate the nine nuts of poetic wisdom. He had nine spots upon him which denoted the nine nuts. There are nine representations which Coll gives us.  Hazel/Coll indicates intuition to lead to the source, to divination, to meditation, and to poetry.

** I must mention here that when you draw a stave, you do not necessarily need to ask a question.  The staves you draw will be your guide for the day or week, depending on how often you like to draw them.

Representations:  Creativity, Divination, Inspiration, Introspection, Knowledge, Healing, Protection, Intuition, Wisdom

Ogham Letter:  C

Number:  9

Colour:  Dark Blue

Tarot:  The Empress

Animals:  Crane, Salmon

Plant:  Vervain

Divination Meaning:  When your query draws the Coll stave, meditate a few moments by holding the Hazel in your hand, if you are using wooden Ogham staves or if you are using the Celtic Tree Oracle cards, hold the Coll card in your hands and gaze upon it in meditation, with the question in your mind as to how does Coll answer? Allow your intuitiveness to lead you.  If you are drawing your Ogham for guidance, again, use intuition.  Allow promptings of your intuition to bring new ideas to the surface. Become a catalyst with those ideas.

How to Mend the Problem:  Your skill in poetry, divination, and mediation can be inspiring to others to help increase their capacity in these arts.  You must be the one to lead by example. Always follow your intuition to the Source.  You will be rewarded with Wisdom and your spirit will sing poetry.  The more you use your gifts, the stronger you will become in them. Never fail to give thanks for the gifts, blessings, lessons, and love received from the Source.

Introspection always seems to lead to new inspiration which in turn leads to creativity. It is when you look inside but do not expect something, the Source opens a window of opportunity to your mind’s eye. Whatever it is, don’t be afraid to learn how to do this new thing.  It could be the difference you have needed in your life!

The Empress card in tarot is a wonderful representation of what Coll stands for – creativity, our strong connection to the feminine no matter if you’re male or female, giving of yourself to be of help to others, the urging of reflection upon your gifts and abundance and your gratitude for these things. And because both Coll and The Empress can suggest pregnancy and birth, the number nine is yet again important.

You can catch up the first five blogs, Part One, Part Two, Part Three, Part Four, Part Five, Part Six, Part Seven, and Part Eight by clicking on these.

Many thanks for reading my blog.  If you have enjoyed it or have learned from it, please share via the social media buttons below.  I love comments also and respond as promptly as I can.  And, I very much enjoy a like for my efforts!  Warmest blessings to those whom wander this way x

Sources

The Celtic Tree Oracle, by Liz and Colin Murray

What’s Your Birth Tree is the New What’s Your Star Sign, by Isabella

 

 

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Seventy-Five Years Ago, This Day

By Isabella @TheWandCarver

Instagram:  @thewandcarver

It was eleven years before I was born.  And, as I have looked back over history it is no small wonder that I was born at all.  My father was fighting against Germany.  He had already been fighting since the war began and he was not very young when he joined compared to most young men.  Still, he was fighting all that time…but he and his men were very tired, and it seemed help might never come.

https___d.ibtimes.co.uk_en_full_1522048_d-day-landings-normandy-1944

D-Day at Normandy ~ photo from ibtimes.co.uk

Then, came D-Day [codename: Operation Overlord].

Dad was in France when the troupes from the world over, Britain, America, Australia, Canada, and more, came that day, but he was not at Normandy Beach.  He did not see the horror that ensued as the men came off their American-made Higgins boats, boats flat and with a drop-front, easy to off load troupes and tanks, and many men were shot down seconds after landing.  The sea was red with blood.  I have seen the re-enactments in films, and I could not imagine how scared and how brave they were. Someone had said “Bravery is seeing the man in front of you being shot down but getting off the boat anyway”.  That may not be the exact quote and I don’t know who to attribute it to, but yeah, that is about it.  Over 9,000 Allied troupes were killed or wounded in a small matter of time.  Still, over 100,000 men went on to march across France to help see off Mr Hitler.

Dad had ended up in a field hospital with shrapnel from some kind of flying metal object when parachuting in.  It cut a perfect “V” on his shin.  He always took that as an omen.  V for Victory. They were there to secure bridges for the coming invasion. This was one of only a small handful of “war stories” he ever gave me.

The rest, as they say, is history.  It took a while, but the Allied invasion was the beginning of the end for fascism… at least for a while and at least to this degree.

My father is sadly no longer with us, having passed on in 2000. Sadly, he was one of the ones who never talked much about his part in the war.  Just bits and pieces and never anything regarding the bad things… of which there were many.  I would have liked to have learned more about it all from his perspective, not that I am one to glorify war in any way, not at all.  Still, this war happened, and my father was a part of it, so why should I not hold interest?  I am very proud of the role he played and for the six long, embattled years he spent defending the UK, Belgium, Italy, and France – everywhere [!] from the tyranny of Adolf Hitler.  And, I am thankful not only to Dad but for every man and woman who fought, spied, and worked out encoded messages; because of them, we are still free.

Say a word of thanks today.

Many thanks for reading and please feel free to comment.  Warmest blessings to all whom this way wander x

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Doomsday, Seventy-five Years Ago and Look Where We Are Today

By Isabella @TheWandCarver

Instagram:  @thewandcarver

Some might say I’m getting a bit too political in my old age.  Well, I’ve seen some things, so I say, I’ve earned it. I have not seen half what the young chaps during WWII, particularly, D-Day [short for Doomsday] have seen.  And with the deepest respect for them I wanted to bring to you two very timely stories by two completely different chaps – one fellow is from England and was only 11 years of age at the time of D-Day.  However, his accounting of history is significant as are his opinions.  The other account is from a German soldier, who was captured and taken to the US to stay in a prison camp.  I do hope that with reverence to the war that ensured our freedoms on both sides of the pond for this last 75 years, you will read them both and take from them what you will.  I will give my take afterwards as I wouldn’t want to sway anyone’s thoughts and opinions.  I am copying them both from the original news stories with due attribution to the news medias from which they come as well as to the writer of each story.  Thank you for your time.

From The Daily Beast

D-Day at 75: What the Hell Happened to the Spirit That Saved Europe?

By Clive Irving   06.01.19

In the late spring of 1944, an 11-year-old boy was cycling down a bucolic country lane in southern England when he saw something so extraordinary that he thought it must be a mirage.

Operation Overlord

“Operation Overlord” D-Day

Between the rows of trees in an apple orchard were wingless military airplanes covered in camouflage netting. Like others of his age in wartime Britain the boy had learned to identify types of warplane—though in his case and to his eternal shame he had once erroneously identified one flying overhead as British only to see its bomb doors open and unload on a nearby railway.

This time he correctly recognised the machines sitting in the orchard as one of America’s finest fighters, the P-51 Mustang. Further down the lane in another orchard were larger four-engined British Stirling bombers, again wingless.

Amazingly, nobody was guarding these machines which, in their wingless form, seemed helplessly and incongruously immobilised. How did they get there? And why?

They were part of the massive assembly of military equipment concentrated in England for the largest gamble of the war, the Allied invasion of mainland Europe on D-Day, June 6, 1944. England had become like one vast offshore aircraft carrier. But the size of the air armada and its location had to be hidden from German overflights, lest it betray D-Day’s target, the beaches of Normandy.

Nearer to that fateful day 75 years ago the parked fuselages would be transported out by road and reunited with their wings at the airfields where their crews waited. The Mustangs would escort bombers and the Stirlings would tow gliders carrying the thousands of special forces who would head silently in the night to positions beyond the beaches.

The boy on the bike was me. You don’t easily forget an experience like that – it was a small and personal window into something too large really to properly comprehend at the time it happened. I got off the cycle and walked around the Stirlings, trying to imagine what it must be like to sit exposed in the transparent nose turret over enemy territory.

The thrill was juvenile, but already part of a life that had adapted to the everyday movements of epic warfare to a point where they were as normal as the other routines of growing up in wartime Britain.

“It was as much a cultural occupation as it was a military one.”

The quaint names of many of the villages in southern England—Chipping Ongar, Fowlmere, Matching Green, Thorpe Abbots—had suddenly become attached to airfields that emerged almost overnight as America sent her great bomber fleets across the Atlantic.

By mid-1943 the US Eighth Air Force was bombing Germany almost every day from these airfields. The young men flying those missions suffered fearful losses but they knew why they were there: One of them, a New Yorker named Elmer Bendiner, wrote The Fall of Fortresses, one of the finest war memoirs, and he put it very clearly, when he said, “it was quite in order to believe that the world could be undone and reborn in the twinkling of an eye and that I was to be an agent of that cataclysmic revolution.”

Bendiner was one of a million Americans sent to Britain as the planning of D-Day began. The effects of this migration were profound and lasting for both nations, binding them together in a way that is virtually impossible to imagine now if you were not there. Nothing like it has happened before or since.

It was as much a cultural occupation as it was a military one. The contrast between the war experience of the two nations was vast. The British had grown used to a war in which civilian populations were often living in the front line, bombed for nights on end, and depending for survival on skillfully managed but austere food rationing.

When General Omar Bradley, to become one of the key commanders on D-Day and during the battles beyond the beachheads, arrived at Prestwick in Scotland in September 1943, he was offered for breakfast a choice between boiled fish and stewed tomatoes. “Prestwick taught me to confine my breakfast thereafter to the U.S. Army mess,” wrote Bradley.

The reverse of this was that the British found the Americans to be enjoying a lifestyle that was for them mostly a distant memory: a normal American diet with plentiful red meat, far better tailored uniforms, and a general assumption that an efficient fighting force should be supported by creature comforts equal to those at home.

But as I recall it there was more admiration than resentment. After all, American culture in the form of music and movies had already made its own ocean crossing years before. The glamorous norms of American domestic life were vicariously enjoyed in cinemas as though existing on another planet. Hollywood supplied more than half of the movies shown.

Big band swing music was contagious. Dance halls were one of the few places where the young Americans could meet the British girls and schmooze to the beat familiar from the recordings of Tommy Dorsey, Harry James, Artie Shaw and Glen Miller. James’ wife, the movie siren Betty Grable, became a kind of Eighth Air Force voluptuary, a model for the pin-ups painted on the fuselages of B-17 bombers to remind crews of the girls they dreamed of—or, in many cases, of the British girls they dated and, if they survived, would take home as brides.

Meanwhile, at the more urgent and serious level of military planning, the so-called Grand Alliance of powers was less harmonious. D-Day required the collaboration of generals of very different experience, backgrounds and temperaments.

Compared to today’s elaborate military bureaucracies, the planning of the world’s greatest amphibious expedition began at a remarkably modest scale. In April 1943, fewer than 50 British and American officers of senior ranks were gathered under the British Lieutenant-General Frederick Morgan in Norfolk House in the centre of London to conceive the invasion of mainland Europe.

Some of Churchill’s staff had prepared an alternative plan based on the idea that—if left for long enough—the Nazi regime would collapse from internal opposition and no invasion would be needed.”

The Americans arrived in London gung-ho to make a devastating assault that would drive ultimately all the way from the English Channel to Berlin. They were dismayed to discover that the British were far less decisive and, given the complexity of the operation, reluctant even to consider a concrete date for the landings.

Looming over the whole endeavour was the titanic presence of Winston Churchill. Britain’s greatest war leader had held fast against Hitler as the rest of Europe fell but now he was haunted by a spectre of his own youthful audacity. In the World War I campaign against the Ottoman empire he had been the architect of an amphibious attack on a Turkish stronghold at Gallipoli that had ended in a bloody fiasco.

The prime minister hadn’t lost his nerve but right up to the moment 24 hours after the June 6 landings when it was finally clear that they were successful he remained unusually tense. Some of his staff had prepared an alternative plan based on the idea that—if left for long enough—the Nazi regime would collapse from internal opposition and no invasion would be needed.

Churchill knew this was wishful thinking. He also knew that the Allied forces were up against some of the best trained and equipped fighters in the world, the German Panzer divisions. Apart from one decisive victory in North Africa when the British defeated one of Hitler’s most capable generals, Erwin Rommel, the German army had proved hard to beat in western Europe. But, like Napoleon before him, Hitler had suffered huge losses by invading Russia, particularly to the strength of the Luftwaffe.

This had decisive consequences in Normandy: although the Panzers could match any Allied ground forces they had little air support. After confusion in the German high command delayed deployment of the Panzers their best tank, the Tiger, was the most devastating weapon facing the invaders on the ground. It was only because the Luftwaffe was incapable of providing them cover that they were unable to stop the break out from the beaches and the eventual thrust toward the Rhine and the German homeland.

Although the Supreme Commander on D-Day was General Dwight Eisenhower his three subordinates in charge of land, sea and air operations were all British—the last time that Britain would ever play such a significant role in any war. Of these the most talented and most irksome was the lean and eternally disputatious General Bernard Montgomery, victor of the great battle with Rommel.

Bernard Montgomery

General Bernard Montgomery

Montgomery later rewrote history, claiming that Morgan’s staff had produced a flawed plan that he pulled apart and reconstructed. In fact, Morgan’s D-Day plan had correctly chosen Normandy over other sites and, with a clever scheme of deception, convinced the Germans that if there were landings they would be much further north. Moreover, many of the technical innovations that secured success, like whole pre-fabricated harbours, came out of Morgan’s visionary team. Montgomery did improve the planning and provided the dynamism to execute it, but he traduced Norman.

Historians of D-Day all agree that it was Eisenhower, a general with no battlefield campaign to his name, whose diplomatic and people skills were indispensable in reining in and deploying egos as large as Montgomery’s and his own strutting military genius General George Patton. Bradley, too, helped hold the volatile command together.

And so it was that on the morning of June 6, 1944, a massive force headed for five beaches on the French coast: 156,000 troupes, nearly 7,000 vessels and 11,590 airplanes.

Among those airplanes were the previously wingless machines that I had found dispersed in the orchards among the apple blossom two months earlier. But on that June morning they were not what I saw. Soon after daylight the Eighth Air Force took off and, as I watched, formed up in waves of B-17 bombers over our villages and towns and headed east to pulverise the German military infrastructure in northern France in order to cripple the immediate response to the landings.

All of us who remember that time of exceptional fusion of American and British talent and bravery look on it now, 75 years later, with mixed emotions. It made me, forever afterward, deeply aware of what could be achieved when the very best of both nations could be galvanised into common purpose for the sake of civilisation as we are able uniquely to fashion it. Europe was saved. The concordat of Atlanticism held good for several generations and with it unprecedented peace and prosperity.

Now large ideas, open minds and daring vision are in retreat. Populism in Europe poisons politics and weakens democracy. Instead of pushing on with the great European project that really began with D-Day, Britain is in the grip of the Little Englander fantasies of Brexit. Donald Trump will co-opt D-Day for his own purposes and once more show his profound gift for getting on the wrong side of history as only someone who knows no history can. And America was never more on the right side of history than on June 6, 1944.

Hold that last thought.  Now, the thoughts of a former German soldier….

From NBC News [North America]

Approaching D-Day’s 75th anniversary, former German soldier Paul Golz fears for Europe

By  Andy Eckardt and Corky Siemaszko  June 2, 2019

KOENIGSWINTER, Germany — Seventy-five years after D-Day, the world is once again a troubling place to a former German soldier who was on the losing side of the cataclysmic clash that hastened the end of World War II.

Paul Golz

Ex-German POW, Paul Golz

Paul Golz, 95, has a clear memory of being on guard duty in the early morning hours of June 6, 1944 — and realizing the invasion was underway when the skies over the Normandy coast were illuminated by flares, known as “Christmas Trees,” dropped by Allied planes to mark paratroop landing areas.

“It looked very nice,” Golz, sitting in his tidy cottage in the German town of Koenigswinter, told NBC News several months before the anniversary of D-Day. “And then I knew, aha, now it is starting.”

Golz was at the time a drafted member of the German army, then under control of the Nazis, and he has recounted that day several times before to historians, to curious reporters, and to several generations of school children.

But as the leaders of the Free World prepare to mark the 75th anniversary of D-Day, Golz said he fears a fraying of the alliances that were created in the wake of the war, alliances that brought peace and stability to Europe. And he has deep misgivings about the leadership of President Donald Trump.

“With Trump it is not easy,” Golz said. “Many Germans are not happy with what he does. He cannot just say ‘America First.’ Today you cannot succeed alone.”

It’s not just Trump. Britain’s decision to leave the European Union also worries Golz.

“Take Brexit, that monkey business,” he said. “How should England succeed in a world where everything is globalized?”

Like many Germans, Golz also takes a dim view of the thousands of Syrian refugees who have recently found shelter in his country.

“Nobody wants them, we also do not want them to stay,” Golz said. “We rebuilt our country, the Syrians also have to go back and rebuild their own country. There is no other way.”

Never mind that Golz himself became a refugee after the war when Pomerania, a region on the southern Baltic coast where his family ran a farm, was returned to Poland and the Germans were expelled.

What remains undimmed by the passage of time, however, is Golz’s belief that the invasion that spelled the end of the Third Reich saved Europe — and his life.

Take Brexit, that monkey business,” he said. “How should England succeed in a world where everything is globalized?

“It changed my life, the life of a poor farmer’s son,” Golz said in German. “I am thankful to the Americans, too. I was never treated badly. We always had enough to eat. And we had these great windbreaker jackets.”

Were it not for a case of diphtheria, Golz might have wound up on the Russian Front. He came down with the infection not long after he was drafted at age 18 and wound up in a hospital in the German-occupied Polish city of Torun.

“Approximately 10 people from my company were ill at the time, and most of the others were quickly deployed to Russia,” he said. “They died like flies. Hitler sent the youth to the slaughter.”

Once he was better, Golz was assigned to 91st Air Infantry Division and dispatched to Normandy where the troops were literally dug in near the Cherbourg heights.

“We did not live in houses at the time, but dug holes where we lived,” he said. “About one meter deep into the ground and a tent above it. We were about eight people in one tent.”

And all around them was a forest of “Rommel’s asparagus,” millions of 13-to-16-feet logs planted in fields, the tops connected by tripwires that would set off a mine should a parachutist or a glider hit one. They were named after Field Marshal Erwin Rommel.

On the day of invasion, Golz said he was more concerned about being hungry than the invading Allies. He said at that point he had not eaten in three days, but when he went into a nearby village to get some milk he was rebuffed by the French.

Golz said he returned to his unit, which had been ordered to march toward the town of Sainte-Mère-Église, some three hours away. But en route, Golz said, they were ordered to head to another town.

“I saw how the bombs were dropping,” he said.

Starved and thirsty, Golz said at one point he wandered off into a field in search of sustenance when he saw something moving.

“I took my weapon down and moved toward it,” he said.

It was a downed parachutist. His face was covered with camouflage paint, but he was unlike any man Golz had ever encountered before.

“I had never before seen a black man,” Golz said.

Golz said the soldier was trembling. He said he spoke no English, so he tried to reassure him in German that he was not going to hurt him.

“He spoke back to me calmly in English and in the end took his water bottle and said ‘Good water,’ which I understood,” he said.

Golz said he insisted the soldier take a sip before he too drank from the bottle. Then he took the American prisoner.

The next day, Golz said he saw his first dead American. He said the German soldier he was with, a Saxon named Schneider, began searching the pockets of the corpse and found a wallet with a picture of a pretty blonde woman inside.

“And then we saw that he had a golden ring with a stone on his right hand,” Golz said. “Schneider tried to pull it off, but could not get it off. So, he said he would cut off his fingers. I said, ‘If you cut off his fingers, I will blow you away.’”

“It was good that we did not do it,” he added. “Because we heard from others that if the Americans found a ring on you, they would shoot you.”

By June 10 of that year, the war was over for Golz. He said after strafing a column of American trucks with machine gun fire, they retreated to a pasture where the pursuing GI’s found them.

“Come on boys, hands up,” Golz recalls the Americans telling them.

Golz said they had no choice but to surrender. He said they were forced to march for two hours to a market hall where about 100 other German prisoners of war were being held. He recalled that the black GI guarding them rebuffed a furious French man who wanted to shoot all the Germans.

“The American had a duty to guard us, and that is what he did,” Golz said.

From there, the POWs were marched to Utah Beach and loaded on a British ship. To this day he remembers in detail what they were fed.

“Sausages, mashed potatoes, a cup of coffee and white bread,” he said. “After we ate, we were still hungry, so we went down the stairs and stood in line again to eat a second time.”

They were taken first to a prisoner of war camp in Scotland. Then, after a time, they were shipped across the ocean to New York City on a ship called the Queen Mary 1. From there, Golz said they were taken by train to West Virginia and a POW camp where they were treated more like guests than prisoners.

“On every bed there were cigarettes and chocolate, and they had prepared food in the kitchen for us,” he recalled, smiling broadly. “That is where I drank my first Coca-Cola. Wow, that tasted delicious. Ice cold.”

Come on boys, hands up,” Golz recalls the Americans telling them.

Just how well they were being treated sank in for Golz when they were made to watch news footage from the newly liberated Nazi concentration camps.

“It was the first time we were confronted with the atrocities,” he said. “We saw the starving people in the concentration camps.”

Golz said that, when he was asked at age 16 which branch of the service he should sign up for, his older brother, who had already fought in Ukraine, had advised him not to join the Gestapo.

“They did not fool around, I was told,” he said.

But Golz said he was not aware of what his fellow Germans had done to the Jews and Poles and countless others until he saw the footage. He said his captors were surprised when he told them he did not know what happened in places like Auschwitz, Dachau or Sachsenhausen.

“I told them I did not know about this because in Germany we did not get to see or hear this,” he said. “Those who had taken part, had been a guard there, did not say anything.”

Golz said he was released in 1946 and when he returned to what was left of Germany he began to realize how lucky he was to have been captured by the Americans. In addition to losing his home, he learned that his sister had been raped by Russian soldiers and became pregnant.

“The worst I did not get to see because I was in the United States at the time,” he said.

In the years that followed, Golz said he became a student of the war he had taken part in. He began returning to Normandy on the significant anniversaries and meeting with American soldiers who were once his enemies. He recalls being deeply moved the first time he went to the American cemetery.

“They were all shot in the water on June 6,” he said. “That was on my mind when I saw the many graves. The Germans sat in a big bunker with big machine guns and just aimed at them.”

Golz said he was also asked several times to speak to French schoolchildren about the war and his small part in it. He showed a reporter the words he used to read to the classes when he made his presentation.

“These many, many young men, most of them between 18 and 25, have given their lives for our peace, for today’s Europe,” part of it reads. “Remember that and preserve this peace.”

In the twilight of his life, Golz said he is aware that he is part of a dwindling fraternity and that time has done what the bullets didn’t do in 1944, namely cull the numbers of men he could call comrades-in-arms.

These days, when he can, Golz said he tends to his little garden and the old apple tree that “still brings him joy and a few apples each year.” And he remembers.

“I have no hate, no hate,” he said.

Eckardt reported from Koenigswinter, Germany, and Siemaszko from New York City.

I hope you read both accounts. I know they are rather long, but I felt they needed to be re-posted in their entirety, although photographs from the articles could not be procured.  An Englishman and a German from the time of the same war.  One a young boy, the other a soldier…. But they both seem to have a common feeling between them.  They are both against the divisiveness and Populist actions of some politicians in different countries.  I will hold my hand up that I once thought it would be good for the UK to go back to standing apart from Europe.  What do I know? It seemed to hold up fine the first 18 years of my life without being a part of a Union… still, the divorce proceedings have been bloody awful and has divided the country terribly. This I am worried for.  And now there is a man named Trump as President of America whom is intent on driving a wedge between his own people, serving to disembowel democracy with every tweet and with his posturing and rudeness has set the poorest example possible for younger people – for any people. How he gets to weigh in on how Brexit should be handled is beyond me, not to mention how horrible he has been to London Mayor Sadiq Khan.  The thing I constantly tell myself is that although, yes, the American public voted this man into office, it was not all of them  who did, and we must remember that Hillary Clinton did win the popular vote but their ridiculously confusing and out-dated “Electoral College” [which is hardly a ‘college’], actually gave Trump the presidency.  I don’t blame the American people… not all of them… not the majority anyway. I think it is very telling that Democracy is supported because of the popular vote.  I know when [and if] they can get shut of Trump as president, it will take a long, hard time to right all his wrongs, but we must all be patient as we would be with a poorly relative and give it time.  My point is, that these fine gentlemen whose words you read above remember a kinder, more genteel America.  One that treated prisoners of war like true guests in an honourable way and another who remembers the greatness of those who came to the aide of a country they once fought to leave but came back to save lives and help us to free all from the spectre of fascism.  Yes, what the hell happened, indeed?  Not just to Europe but to America? It wasn’t all Donald Trump, but he surely has made it worse.

Harken back to the days 75 years ago and renew the gentility and good manners.  Respect one another, no matter their colour, religion, or country.  Allow yourself to put fear aside and learn about each other.  People only generally hate what they fear.  So, learn about Islam, or Judaism, or Black culture or whatever it is you think you hate. Learn the truth so you can stop being fearful and when you’ve stopped being fearful, you will learn to love and respect.  These men thought we were on the way to learning this but along the way both sides got turned wrong way round.  Let’s shift our focus back to what is right.

And I say this to people of every country, not any one in particular.  We all have much to learn. I’m so grateful that we did get it right 75 years ago.  We can do that again. As Mr Golz said: We cannot just say ‘America First’ [or any country first]. Today you cannot succeed alone. #BetterTogether

Many thanks for reading my rather lengthy blog.  When I first read these two stories I felt they must be married together in one writing to prove one point.  I do appreciate the time you’ve taken from your day to read and if you would like to share, please use the social media buttons below.  I also love comments and will be happy to answer as soon as possible.  Warmest blessings to all whom this way wander x

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A Beginner’s Understanding of Ogham Divination, Part Eight

By Isabella @TheWandCarver

Instagram:  @thewandcarver

Ogham Tinne

Ogham Tinne ~ photo by i.macy

Our Ogham letter this week is Tinne, the Ogham for the beautiful Holly tree.  It is the ruler of the 8th lunar month and the birth tree Ogham for those born between 8th July and 4th August.  It is an Ogham which encourages your intuition more than most, although all the Ogham does encourage reliance on your intuition.  However, if you want to help your intuitiveness along, holding a piece of Holly whilst meditating would not do any harm, for the spirit of the wood will be most helpful. Tinne guides and gives you the courage to rely upon your innate intuition,

Representations:  Courage, Death, Divinity, Guidance, Healing, Intelligence, Luck, Rebirth, Unity, Intuition

Ogham Letter:  T

Number:  8

Colour:  Dark Red, Grey Green

Tarot:   The Moon

Animals:  Cardinal [North America], Starling

Plant:  Meadowsweet

Divination Meaning:  In answer to your query, the answer may be that challenges will be overcome by unity and concerted effort.  Be sure the cause is just… again, your intuition will answer. If you have learned to trust and rely on your intuition, you will know your answer.  If it is “no”, then move along, no action needed.  If it is “yes”, you will know what to do.  Develop the ability to respond quickly and wisely to your intuition. Learn to overcome and adapt to new situations, and to respond immediately to changes in your spiritual environment. Trust your instinct, but don’t let your heart rule over your head.

How to Mend the Problem:  As warriors train and retrain with spears this becomes instinctive. So too you must train and retrain daily.  Cultivate dynamic and instinctive intuition to respond to fast-moving situations and accept the reality of the here and now. Ensure the ability of being able to slip in and out of a great many behavioural styles to be able to respond to the environment at hand.

It is a kind of behavioural shape-shifting and when learned well it is the making of anyone in medical, law, and instructional [teaching] fields but is well for anyone, no matter what they do. Tinne also teaches unity… learning to trust others is crucial. Of course, there are those whom are not trustworthy, but your intuition will teach you who to avoid. There is strength to be found in standing together, and ultimately protection comes from honour and trust.  As always, first trust yourself, particularly your intuition, just as in tarot, the Moon card instructs us to do. Your intuitive body will support you unerringly if you do not interfere with or try to control what you perceive.

You can catch up the first five blogs, Part One, Part Two, Part Three, Part Four, Part Five, Part Six, and Part Seven by clicking on these.

Many thanks for reading my blog.  If you have enjoyed it or have learned from it, please share via the social media buttons below.  I love comments also and respond as promptly as I can.  And, I very much enjoy a like for my efforts!  Warmest blessings to those whom wander this way x

Sources

The Celtic Tree Oracle, by Liz and Colin Murray

What’s Your Birth Tree is the New What’s Your Star Sign, by Isabella

Posted in Business, Celtic Tradition, Divination, divination tools, Holly tree, Magic, Magickal, occult, ogham, Pagan, traditional witchcraft, Witch, Witchcraft, wood | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

A Beginner’s Understanding of Ogham Divination, Part Seven

By Isabella @TheWandCarver

Instagram:  @thewandcarver

Duir Oak Ogham

Duir Ogham ~ Photo by i.macy

The ruler of the seventh lunar month and Ogham letter “D” is Duir which is the Ogham for the Oak tree.  Duir is also the Ogham of those born between 10 June and 17 July.  The grand Oak is the King of the forest and he grows slowly, taking in and processing everything… he is the Protector and the doorway [the word Duir means door] to all mysteries.  The Oak teaches us strength.  It decrees justice.  When you draw the Duir Ogham, do not take your intuition lightly for you will do yourself a great disservice if you do.

Representations:  Ancestry, Protection, Fertility, Health, Success, Prosperity, Wisdom, Justice, Strength

Ogham Letter:  D

Number:  7

Colour:  Gold

Tarot:  Strength

Animals:  Oriole, White Horse, Wren

Plant:  Colts Foot, Mistletoe

Divination Meaning:  Whatever your query, when you pull Duir, you know you must take a “hands-on” approach to the answer. This will nurture the skills you wish to have.  You must be brave; step through the door. As with all Ogham divination, you will learn by doing. Because you do, you will be wiser.

How to Mend the Problem:  You have accumulated acorns of wisdom.  If you have not, it is time to do so. You will be called upon to share this wisdom with others.  Whether you are a teacher or student, you are called upon to be tough and resilient despite life’s unpredictability as an Oak is to a bolt of lightning.  Strength and Wisdom are your mission and you know deep down you can achieve these.

This is your first lesson as the first drawing of Duir.  As you progress with your strengthening intuition you will be able to read this Ogham much easier in relevance to your query.  Always remember the Oak’s representations and learn how they come through to you each time.  Never forget that Duir is the doorway to every knowledge.

You can catch up the first five blogs, Part One, Part Two, Part Three, Part Four, Part Five, and Part Six by clicking on these.

Many thanks for reading my blog.  If you have enjoyed it or have learned from it, please share via the social media buttons below.  I love comments also and respond as promptly as I can.  And, I very much enjoy a like for my efforts!  Warmest blessings to those whom wander this way x

Sources

The Celtic Tree Oracle, by Liz and Colin Murray

What’s Your Birth Tree is the New What’s Your Star Sign, by Isabella

Experience

Posted in Business, Celtic Tradition, Celtic Tree Calendar, Divination, divination tools, Druid, fertility, Health, longevity, Magic, Magickal, Oak Tree, ogham, Pagan, Prosperity, protection, traditional witchcraft, Uncategorized, Witch, Witchcraft | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Climate Crisis is Not a Reason to Bully

By Isabella @TheWandCarver

Instagram:  @thewandcarver

daily mail greta thunberg climate strike

Greta Thunberg at Swedish climate strike ~ photo by dailymail.co.uk

Unless you have been living in a bubble somewhere in Siberia, most likely you have heard of sixteen-year-old Greta Thunberg of Sweden and how she decided to strike school each Friday to get attention to the climate crisis all over the world.  And since then, school children not only in Sweden but also in the UK, Germany, the US, and hec – everywhere[!] have been on climate strike.  School-aged children from lower years up through teens have been taking to the streets with placards and posters every Friday for some weeks now.  And, as it happens, there will always be at least one whom occasionally doesn’t want to.  No worries.  At least, there should be no worries. 

As reported by Sputnik, 23.05.2019:  “A Swedish girl who refused to join her classmates in skipping school for the sake of the climate has ended up being labelled as a “climate denier”, which her mother described as “mass psychosis“.

The teacher of this student [yes, the teacher] told the young girl she “was uncommitted and failed to understand the seriousness of the climate threat and she should reconsider her decision”. What is worse is that she said it openly, for the entire class to hear.  And, as children are wont to do, they took the cue from their teacher, ganged up on the poor girl, and called her a “climate denier” and stopped social interaction with her, in a sort of ‘boycott’ of her because she did not fall in line with their thinking.  But wait… it gets worse.  When the young lady’s mother rang the school to speak with the head teacher, she was told that her daughter “went against the rest of the class and refused to participate in something this positive”.  And now, the poor girl has refused to return to her classes.

I am pretty sure this is not the way Miss Thunberg would want to get people involved on climate change.

I suppose it had to happen eventually, although it really should not happen.  No one should ever be bullied into doing things they do not want to do, no matter how good the cause.  And, it may not have been that she disagreed with the ‘cause’ but perhaps she was not feeling well that day for whatever reason.  Or, perhaps she is a climate denier.  Still, it makes no difference why she did not want to strike.  It should have been enough that she said no.  That should have been an end to it.  She could have either been sent to sit in on another class or asked would she rather go home.  That is all that should have come of it.  Instead, an over-zealous teacher decided to over-step her boundaries by making an “example” of this young lady and caused the girl’s very friends to turn against her!  It would seem the head teacher was in on it as well.  With people in charge of classrooms such as these, we will be churning out bullies and alt-righters as fast as you can say climate emergency.

First, this teacher and head teacher should have a good, hard think about what they have caused to happen by their over-zealousness and because of it, have failed to understand the seriousness of their actions and they should reconsider their decision to have spoken so to this young girl without considering the fact that she had a right to her decision not to strike.  No matter the reason why.  They should then go before the class of pupils whom were involved because of their bad actions and explain what has happened and apologise for having drawn them into this most unkind act upon the girl whom has a right to whatever feelings she has.  They should call for understanding.  Then, the teacher and head teacher should go to the girl’s home, with parent[s] present, and tell her that they have examined their actions and now realise they were wrong to have done this to her.  Tell her they have had a word with her fellow students, and then apologise profusely to her and ask that she come back to school with assurances that this will not happen again on their watch.  This can make the situation into a positive learning experience which will show children that it is good to accept responsibility for one’s own actions, good or bad, and how to diffuse and rectify a bad situation.  It will also restore trust within the student-teacher partnership as should be.  But most of all, the poor young girl whom has been so humiliated by teacher and friends alike, can now feel more valuable again because they all cared enough to acknowledge the wrongs they committed and apologise.  This could be a turning point in her life… for good or bad.  I hope the teachers decide for good.

sgspegasusschool.co.uk_repository_stopbullying-1448469033

image from sgspegasusschool.co.uk

The lesson here is, be zealous, it’s alright. However, balance that zealousness with oversight.  Make certain you never allow yourself to make anyone feel badly because they don’t believe as you do.  Pushing, prodding, speaking ill-advisedly to, and plain bullying will never cause change. Oh, I believe I’m wrong there – bullying can definitely cause change but not the kind of change you want.  In the current state of climate change, I concur there is a climate emergency.  No, we do not have time to rest on our laurels, so to speak.  However, we have no right to try to shame anybody into helping our efforts along.  When we shame and bully, we create slaves.  We create action from people whom are afraid of us and feel they must do our bidding or be hurt in some way.  It is not the kind of action we want, now is it?  The ends do not justify the means, ever.  So what if we could reverse climate change if by doing so we turn out nations full of scared, enslaved people?

The only way to tackle the climate crisis is with good will, and that includes a willingness to accept other people’s feelings.  Apart from conservative politicians, many people are feeling terrified of what is happening in the world and find it easier to hide away from it.  Very understandable.  I do it myself when I do something I love and can find rest within my soul from the doing of this thing, like wood carving.  My mind goes blank when I do, and I don’t think.  Some call this Mindfulness…I call it ‘mind-less-ness’.  I leave my mind blank to accept creativity to speak to me; the wood, in fact, speaks to me.  Still, when all is said and done, I do come back to the other reality… the one we face with minds full of worries about the state of the world.  But when I do, I have found answers in the most unlikely seeming of ways… and then I write.

Big Green Heart Saving GaiaWe really must do all we can to help Mother Earth and each other.  We must stand together, and we must not only do for ourselves but to consider our neighbours, both on our street, in our village or town, and in our world.  We must do what we can as if we were a part of a huge puzzle because we are.  Sometimes some pieces are missing but it’s alright because we always find that missing piece eventually.  Even if we don’t, we have enough pieces to see that the unfolding picture is beautiful. But let us do what we do from a place of love, not zealousness.  Love for our planet, love for our family, ourselves, and for all people, for we are all the same really.  Don’t think in terms of “Well, my neighbour doesn’t do half what I do for climate change”.  This is counter-productive, and we should never measure ourselves against anybody else, and that includes when you think “Oh dear, I am not doing half what my neighbour does for climate change!”… Don’t bully yourself!  Do what you can and be pleased with your efforts.  The longest walk starts with the smallest steps and if we’re all stepping toward the same goal, even when some others do not, we will get to the end.  No one has the right to judge whether anyone else is doing enough.  Unless it is your government and then if they aren’t, do write letters. Do passively protest.  But do not bully.

Thank you for reading.  I do hope you have found something which at least vaguely helps you in my blog and if you have, please share via the social media buttons below.  I love to receive comments and likes and I always answer as quickly as possible.  Everyone means a great deal to me and I only wish to help, never harm so do let me know how I’m doing.  Many warm blessings upon all whom this way wanders x

** Everyone is being called to Climate Strike on 20 September, young and old alike.  I will write more about it in future, but if you wish to participate, save the date! Please visit https://www.facebook.com/savinggaia2019/  for more details along the way.  Thank you x

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