The Haunted History of Das Verflucht Schwarze Haus (the Cursed Black House)

The Haunted History of Das Verflucht Schwarze Haus or The Cursed Black House compiled from historical sources and local legends.

I am not a writer, but enjoy this twisted llittle tale from my imagination. Photographs and Story © GLHoke 2012.

southsideDas Verflucht Schwarze Haus

maplewellThe sealed Well and Old Maple Tree

Preface – This Blair Witch themed and Lovecraftian styled fictional story was written after a day of walking through an old cemetery, running into a large black dog there, exploring a very old stone house, and finding a heart shaped willow wreath decorated with dried thistle flowers and a purple glass marble on the property. The real name of this town and historical house have been changed, and the photos altered so as to not give away its true location. I took these photos on a tour of the house by the realtor with hopes of buying it since it is such an awesome house with stone walls about eighteen inches thick, hand sawed board floors with square cut nails holding them down, and the original old iron door and cabinet latches throughout the house. It is very atmospheric for sure and thank the gods previous owners have not covered it with linoleum or carpet and tried to modernize it, or the cursed souls within would seek revenge!

atticnorthDas Schwarze Haus – Attic

The little town of Leberpul in the Appalachians was founded along the east side of the Susquehanna River in 1808 over 200 years ago. It was named after Leberpul Germany and was primarily settled by the Germans, English and Scotch-Irish. It has a long history as a trading town along the river and before the town itself was built nearby the infamous river pirate Simon Girty and the blood thirsty Indians who fought the white man’s incursion. Like most Appalachian towns and cities it started along an old Indian trail which turned into river traffic by the French, then a road was built, and eventually a canal and railroad.

hangingsword2Sorcerer’s Sword found hanging in the Attic

On a hill above the town was an old Indian burial ground of the Black Wolf clan of the Susquehannocks. Back then the dead were tied in bundles to the old oak trees whose cut down trunks are still visible in the Leberpul cemetery which the white men took over to bury their own dead. There was once an old Anglican church built on that hill, but the last Indians burned it down killing the minister and his wife and two children in the smoldering rubble. There is a legend of sightings of a black spirit dog who still guards the old Indian burial mound.

cellarcenterThe Cellar with spirit lights

The first house built in Leberpul was The Black House build at the south end of the present town. It was build by Ebenezer and Elisheba Black. He was a carpenter, cabinet maker and coffin maker, and she was a nurse and helped with his funeral business. His house became the first funeral home in the county. It is said there is a now buried stone tunnel which led from the graveyard hill down to the cellar of his house then down to the river. This tunnel was first used by the Indian shamans and follows a natural cave system under the hill. Later Ebenezer Black used it to bring the bodies and bones down from the graveyard for his necromantic researches. Elisheba used it for cold storage of food and herbs. Long after their deaths during Prohibition the tunnel was used to run liquor from the cellar of The Black House down to the river to boats for distribution up and down to those thirsty souls.

cellarfireplaceThe Cellar Fireplace with the last burnt offerings

One day while preparing a body for burial Ebenezer’s knife slipped striking his helping wife in the eye, which she lost from infection. He made his wife a purple glass eye which she wore until her death, and even beyond.

fox skeleton blue cabinetDog skeleton in corner of Cellar

Old Ebenezar died of smallpox after preparing so many bodies for burial after a short epidemic in that county. Old Elisheba tried to remarry, but no one would have her with her glass eye. She turned for comfort to an old Indian medicine man and from him learned the Black Arts to revenge herself on the community, which both feared and hated her.

HH iron cross skeleton keyKey and Cross needed to enter the Haus

Elisheba, with the help of her medicine man Black Wolf became a witch and soon learned the art of necromancy and communication with the dead who were buried in the cemetery above the house. She prepared elixirs of death from the spring water that drained from the cemetery into a well in the back yard, which is now mysteriously covered with a circular wood piece disguised as a flower pot base. In the attic can still be seen the burned traces of a blackened pentagram where they did their dark magickes, and the hexed sword of magicke hangs there still too from a chain, no one having the courage to take it down. In the hardened dirt floor of the cellar clawed footprints can still be seen of denizens conjured from the cemetery tunnel, and in one corner lays the charred skeleton of some kind of canine.

Hoke BibleOld German Bible of Ebenezar and Elisheba Black

On one dark moon night during a ritual Elisheba lost her purple glass eye. Soon afterwards she and Black Wolf died of an unknown illness. No one knows where they are buried. This all happened a long time ago, but sometimes people say on the old German Lutheran All Souls night the shimmering black ghost of old Ebenezer can be seen at the house, leaving a heart shaped willow wreath decorated with thistles, symbol of his broken heart at the loss of his wife to an Indian. Sometimes the ghost of Black Wolf can be seen in the form of a large black dog roaming through the hilltop cemetery. And most often is told the story of the ghost of the witch Elisheba walking around the Old Brown House looking for her lost purple glass eye.

HH wintersolstice 7The Witch’s Glass Eye found in floor board

The old Black House is now up for sale once again, and all I can say is Beware those who may desire to buy this house to live in again. Many are the dark homeless ghosts and evil Indian and canine demons who still roam there. If you find a heart shaped willow wreath decorated with thistles laying in the yard, as i did, sit it upright against the house to honor Ebenezer’s undying love, as i did. If you find Elisheba’s purple glass eye, as i did,  then bury it in the front yard of your property with the leg bone of a black dog, and this will keep the witch of The Black House at bay. Beware the curse of The Black House Witch!

Besom 1Witch’s Broom in front of the back door

Copy of devils footprintsThe Devil’s Footprints in snow behind Haus

 

 

G Lee Hoke © 2012

A Phurba Dagger for Hekate?

On reading about Hekate recently i realized how perfectly she would be as a Tibetan Buddhist wrathful Dakini deity. She is triple headed and holds a torch, key, snake and dagger. She is the opener of the gateway into the underworld of snakes (Nagaloka). Then i started thinking about her holding a blade and bam I realized the Himalayan Phurba is perfect for her. It has three heads and is a three sided triangular dagger with snakes on the blade. Some Hayagriva phurbas have a horse head, which matches one of her animal forms. So for me I can now use phurbas in any rituals connected with evoking Hekate!

Above are some pics of Hekate and some of my Phurbas for those not familiar with this type of dagger.

And here are some great links about Hekate I have found in the past and today. Enjoy!

Goddess of the Month – Hekate – 1

Goddess of the Month – Hekate – 2

Covenant of Hekate- Sorita d’Este

Night of Hekate – The Purple Bloom

Invocation of the Horned God in German

Image found awhile ago on www unknown source

The Invocation of the Horned God in Witchcraft rituals was written by Doreen Valiente and we in the Coven of the Catta probably copied it from the Grimoire of Lady Sheba. I added the IO PAN because I am also a Thelemite. Last year the daughter of a friend and Priestess in the Coven, who goes by the name of Rabe (German for Raven), did us the service of translating this Invocation into German as part of her cyber high school studies. I asked her to translate it because for a while I toyed with the idea of a Coven that was based on Teutonic Magickes and Runes called Blau Stern Schwarz Schlonge Hexenzirikel, but nothing ever came of that. So here is the Invocation in English and then in German, and if anyone in a German speaking country can offer a better translation then please post that and put the link in my comments sections. Thanks, and Enjoy!

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Invocation of the Horned God in English

By the flame that burneth bright, O Horned One,

We call thy name into the night, O Ancient One.

Thee we invoke by the moonlit sea,

By the standing stone and the twisted tree.

Thee we invoke where gathers our own,

By the nameless shore, forgotten and lone.

Come where the round of the dance is trod,

Horn and hoof of the Goat-foot God.

By moonlit meadows, on dusky hill,

When the haunted wood is hushed and still.

Come to the charm of the chanted prayer,

As the moon bewitches the midnight air.

Evoke thy powers that potent bide,

In the shining stream and the secret tide.

In fiery flame, by starlight pale,

In the shadowy host that rides the gale.

And by the ferndrakes faerie haunted,

Of forest wild and woods enchanted.

Come ! O  Come !  To the heartbeat’s drum !

Come to us who gather below,

Where the broad white moon is climbing slow.

Through the stars to the heaven”s height,

We hear thy feet on the winds of night.

As black tree branches shake and sigh,

By joy and terror we know thee nigh.

We speak the spell thy power unlocks,

At Solstice, Sabat, and Equinox.

IO Pan      IO Pan      IO Pan      Evohe !

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Invocation of the Horned God in German

Durch die Flamme, die brennt hell, O Gehörnten,

Wir rufen deinen Namen in die Nacht, O Uralt eins

Thee rufen wir durch den Mondschein Meer,

Durch den ständigen Stein und die verdrehten Baum.

Thee rufen wir, wo sammelt unsere eigene,

Durch die namenlosen Ufer, vergessen und allein.

Komm dorthin, wo die Runde der Tanz getreten ist,

Horn und Huf des Goat-Fuß-Gott.

Durch Mondschein Wiesen, auf dunklen Hügel,

Wenn das Geisterhaus Holz beruhigt und immer noch ist.

Kommen Sie den Charme der skandierten Gebet,

Als der Mond verzaubert die Mitternacht Luft.

Evoke deine Kräfte, die starke abwarten,

In den glänzenden Strom und das Geheimnis Flut.

In feurigen Flamme, von Sternenlicht blass,

In den schattigen Host, dass der Sturm fährt.

Und durch die ferndrakes faerie verfolgt,

Von Wald wild und Wälder verzaubern.

Kommen Sie! O komm! Um den Herzschlag der Trommel!

Kommen Sie zu uns, zu sammeln unten

Wo die breite weiße Mond klettert langsam.

Durch die Sterne in den Himmel “s hoch,

Wir hören deine Füße auf den Winden der Nacht.

Als schwarze Äste schütteln und Seufzer,

Mit Freude und Schrecken kennen wir dir nahe.

Wir sprechen den Zauber deiner Macht entriegelt,

Bei Solstice, Sabat und Equinox.

IO Pan      IO Pan      IO Pan      Evohe !

The Paradox of Our Time

Images from multiple sources on the www

I found this post on the Biblebelt Witch blog, and wanted to reblog it here since as she says it is so relevant to the hyper-materialistic holidays this time of year. It was originally written by a Rev. Dr. Moorehead back in 1990 as you can read on her link, but it is still very relevant.

The Paradox of Our Time

The paradox of our time in history is that we have taller buildings but shorter tempers; wider freeways, but narrower viewpoints. We spend more, but have less; we buy more but enjoy less We have bigger houses and smaller families, more conveniences, but less time; we have more degrees, but less sense; more knowledge, but less judgment; more experts, yet more problems, more medicine, but less wellness. We drink too much, smoke too much, spend too recklessly, laugh too little, drive too fast, get too angry, stay up too late, get up too tired, read too little, watch TV too much, and pray too seldom.

 We have multiplied our possessions, but reduced our values. We talk too much, love too seldom, and hate too often. We’ve learned how to make a living, but not a life, we’ve added years to life not life to years. We’ve been all the way to the moon and back, but have trouble crossing the street to meet a new neighbor.

We conquered outer space but not inner space.

We’ve done larger things, but not better things.

We’ve cleaned up the air, but polluted the soul.

We’ve conquered the atom, but not our prejudice.

We write more, but learn less.

We plan more, but accomplish less.

We’ve learned to rush, but not to wait.

We build more computers to hold more information to produce more copies than ever, but we communicate less and less.

These are the times of fast foods and slow digestion; big men and small character; steep profits and shallow relationships.

These are the days of two incomes but more divorce, fancier houses but broken homes. These are days of quick trips, disposable diapers, throw-away morality, one-night stands, overweight bodies, and pills that do everything from cheer to quiet, to kill. It is a time when there is much in the show window and nothing in the stock room.

A time when technology can bring this letter to you, and a time when you can choose either to share this insight, or to just hit delete.

Remember, spend some time with your loved ones, because they are not going to be around forever.

Remember, say a kind word to someone who looks up to you in awe, because that little person soon will grow up and leave your side.

Remember, to give a warm hug to the one next to you, because that is the only treasure you can give with your heart and it doesn’t cost a cent.

Remember, to say “I Love you” to your partner and your loved ones, but most of all mean it. A kiss and an embrace will mend hurt when it comes from deep inside of you.

Remember to hold hands and cherish the moment, for some day, that person will not be there again.

Give time to Love, give time to speak, give time to share the precious thoughts in your mind.

Why a Three-fold Law of Return in Witchcraft?

As a witch who has practiced in an initiated lineage for decades I have always had a problem (nowadays known as an “issue”) with the Three-fold Law of Return.

I may believe in Karma to some degree, but even that confuses me at time, especially the use of the term in Buddhism where there is no “God” to run the “karma court”. In western occultism they refer sometimes to the “Lords of Karma” which I guess are some kind of Archon Watchers who administrate the whole system. I think karma may be a law within one’s spirit or soul much like there is karma in the body where if you put your hand in a fire then yes your karma will be a painful burn.

But back to the Three-fold law of return. What I questioned was why karma is three fold for witches and not everyone else? And I found out that Doreen Valiente had the same question when she wrote referring to it in Gerald Gardner’s teachings:

“Another teaching of Gerald’s which I have come to question is the belief known popularly as “the Law of Three”. This tells us that whatever you send out in witchcraft you get back threefold, for good or ill. Well, I don’t believe it! Why should we believe that there is a special Law of Karma that applies only to witches? For Goddess’ sake do we really kid ourselves that we are that important? Yet I am told, many people, especially in the USA, take this as an article of faith. I have never seen it in any of the old books of magic, and I think Gerald invented it.”

So in my research I found this 10 part article called The Three-fold Law by John J. Coughlin who has a website called Waningmoom.com. I had never heard of him before, and he defines himself as a Dark Wyccan and you can explore that at his links above. But the article is very well written and covers all bases and worth reading just for the history of post-Gardner witchcraft in it. It is well documented with lots of quotes, like the one above, and he lists all his sources. So give it a read and enjoy!

Gore Vidal on Monotheism – from the Pagan Reveries blog

“Monotheism is easily the greatest disaster to befall the human race.” ― Gore Vidal

I found this interesting post entitled Gore Vidal on Monotheism at the Pagan Reveries blog (make sure you read his About Me page). His post is full of witty quotes like the one above. The late Gore Vidal was obviously a man of great thought, writings and irreverent cutting humor, and I like how he stands up to the Monotheists! Also there was this video Gore Vidal – God is a Blackmailer which is embedded below, but read the post before watching the video. Enjoy!

The 4 Natural Enemies of a Man of Knowledge – Don Juan Matus

I found this short 10 minute video on the Karmapolice blog yesterday and found it most interesting. I had to listen to it a couple times for it to sink in. I read Castaneda’s books way back in the 1970s and learned a lot from him. I am not going to give away the 4 states of mind he is talking about here as you can watch it yourself. But I will comment on how Clarity could be an impediment. I think this is similar to how in Buddhism early on they realized how the path to Nirvana was a static place and not one of growth, so later they evolved into the selfless path of the Bodhisattva instead. Also in Crowley’s works he talks about the City of Pyramids where yogis and magickians get stuck in some high state that feels good but does not bring about positive change in this world. In others words its fine and good to seek out enlightenment, but then one has to come back down into Malkuth and do something with it, and then the other perils begin. Enjoy.

Addendum – I just finished watching a 6 part BBC documentary from 2006 on Carlos Castaneda. I did not know of his later years. It is a strange, tragic and sad story that shows we are all mortals with all our baggage in the end. But his teachings, whether really from a shaman or from his own spiritual path do live on and have helped many i am sure.

The Use of Bells in Witchcraft and Magicke

Witch Altar with Bell – photo by GLHoke

I recently saw a post at Ayslyn’s blog on spiritual house cleansing and blessing, which is very comprehensive. She mentioned the use of a bell and I wanted to write on the subject of The Use of Bells in Witchcraft and Magicke since I have not seen much written on the subject before.

We’ve all heard of the term “Bell, Book and Candle” from the Kim Novak movie. To a real witch the Bell represents air and water and is a symbol of the Goddess. The Book symbolizes the power of the written and chanted invocation and evocation. And the Candle represents the light and fire of the God.

The sound of a bell travelling through the atmosphere is a vibration of air, but it seems to act more like the rippling of water, which is why i attribute both elements to its use.

In Tibetan Buddhism the bell is called a ghanta and represents the Goddess, as the vajra or thunderbolt represents the God. But a ghanta is complete in itself as the handle is usually a vajra shape. And in fact all bells symbolize both sexes as the clapper is the male and the bowl of the bell is the female.

Vajra and Ghanta

Photo from WWW with no attribution

The bell has been manufactured and used for mundane and spiritual purposes for as long as humans have smelted metal. A bell rung in a village called out across the countryside to gather people for announcements, or to call them together to fend off pending attacks. Bells in Christian cathedrals and Hindu and Buddhist temples are rung to call the gods and to carry our prayers to them. In liturgy a bell is rung to emphasize important parts of it, or maybe to just arouse participants from their snoozing off. Bells are rung at wedding and funerals, at both joyous and somber events.

Vajras and Ghantas – photo by GLHoke

In Witchcraft and Magicke it seems ringing a bell while chanting does through out a vibration that penetrates throughout the temple and house, even into the walls, getting into every nook and cranny.

Negative spirits do seem to dissipate when we use this method. I once did a house exorcism and cleansing with my Priestess, which was recorded for TV, and I rang a bell and swung a censor of incense to the chant of Apo Pantos Kakodaimonos (Greek for – Be gone from me all evil spirits) while my Priestess pointed her athame in every corner. A nasty little incubus imp appeared to her, showed its needle teeth, then took off like its ass was on fire.

But good spirit like the fey of the woods also seem to like the sound of a bell. I know pagans who say to not use metal when working with the nature spirits, and I do not use my athame or sword when working outside. I think if it is metal that is sharp or pointed, something that could be used to harm trees or animals, then they shrink away from it. I don’t think it is the type of metal as much as how it is used because people say they fear iron, but fact is the entire core of the earth is molten iron. Bells are usually made of brass or bronze, so that is a different vibe I guess, more balanced and softer. No one, whether human or fey likes a sudden loud clang of a bell startling them. But I think they like the softer sound of smaller bells like in a wind chime.

In the Coven of the Catta we ring the bell after calling the Watchtowers, and is to both to call them and to honor them. At All Hallows or Samhain we ring the bell 40 times to call the dead we wish to honor. Its hard to get the clapper to just ring 40 times so I usually just hit the bell with the athame to achieve this number. I am reminded at 9/11 commemoration ceremonies how they ring a fireman’s bell when they read the names of the fallen.

In choosing a good bell it is all about the sound, not the size or fanciness of it. One of the prettiest bells I had was Russian, but it sounded dull because it was not cast well. I tend to not buy ritual tools over the internet, Tibetan ghantas and singing bowls are well made so these are probably safe to buy that way. But I think it is always best to just go to a flea market and buy one directly to feel it in your hand and hear the sound for oneself. Old school bells, old servant’s bells or even Austrian crystal Hallmark holiday bells work well, and actually the less fancy bells have plainer surfaces that are easier to engrave or paint with the symbols of your craft.

Military Pagan Prayer from Circle Sanctuary

Blessed Veteran’s Day to all who have served, especially those of you who are Wiccan or Pagan!

I found this post at Biblebelt Witch about Veteran’s Day resources for Pagans and Witches at Circle Sanctuary. Their Circle Military Ministries page has lots of good resources on it, and they have a Military Pagan Prayer Card which can be ordered at this link. Since they say – “Copies of the Prayer and these credit lines may be copied without additional permission & forwarded to Pagans in the military” then I am just going to paste it here below.

I was just telling SM, who is a Marine and Witch, at Thicket of a Witch yesterday how I do not understand why so many people in this country do not vote because they think their one vote does not matter, but I think if nothing else one should vote out of respect for the tens of thousands of soldiers who have served and even paid with their lives so we have the right to vote and the freedoms of religion.

Military Pagan Blessing

Powers of the Ancient Ways,
In this place far from my home and my family,
I honor you and call upon you.

Powers of Earth,
Strengthen my physical body and the bodies of my peers and commanders.

Powers of Air,
Keep me vigilant at my post,
My mind clear and sharp.

Powers of Fire,
Give me courage,
Even when my duty is hard or bitter.

Powers of Water,
Grant me restful slumber and good dreams after a long duty day.

Powers of Spirit,
Balance me in honor, nobility, and spiritual purpose.

Powers of Goddess & God & Their Unity,
Be with me & around me, bless me & protect me as I carry out my mission.

So Mote It Be.

© 2003, Circle Sanctuary, PO Box 9, Barneveld, WI 53507.
Copies of the Prayer and these credit lines may be copied without
additional permission & forwarded to Pagans in the military.

Prayer Card Project Staff:
Prayer by Dr. Drake Spaeth and Rev. Selena Fox.
Graphic by Kia.
Cards produced by Circle staff.