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Rain, Rain Go Away. Folk Predictions of Rain and Storms

Thursday, April 14th, 2016


Folk Predictions of Rain and Storms

It’s that time of year again. Spring is pushing into our lives, stomping her foot down on Winter.

Spring can be a crazy-unpredictable time. It has to do with the transitional nature of the season. Winter and Summer tend to take command of their time in the year. Spring and Autumn, however, are all about shifts and changes. For more symbolic seasonal insights click here.

So Spring is springing (in the Northern hemisphere). That means rain. It can also mean big honking storms.

Now, I’m a huge fan of rain. It’s symbolic of neat stuff like:

  • Healing
  • Renewal
  • Cleansing
  • Emotional Rebirth
  • Gifts from the Heavens

All good things, right? Indeed, rain is a super-keen meteorological event. Without it, we’d all be in a world of hurt. From replenishing vital water tables, to insuring food on our tables – we owe a lot of appreciation to the rain spirits.

But sometimes Mother Nature can go bonkers. Whatever the reason, sometimes Madame Nature takes those life-giving raindrops and transforms them into bullets of destruction in the form of a storm. You’ve heard it said “Into every life some rain must fall”. Well, same is true with storms. Both literal and metaphorical storms happen. To all of us.

So what? Nothing we can do about it, right? Wellll, I wouldn’t be so committed to that view.

I grew up with a friend whose mother was a walking encyclopedia of folk wisdom and medicine. She had hundreds of ways of predicting the weather. She also had equal amount of ways in thwarting bad weather.

Did her methods for shooing away storms work? I can’t say for sure. But I do know her prediction skills were better than the weatherman on TV!

Whether you believe in folk methods for weather prediction and prevention or not – sometimes it’s fun to entertain the ideas.

The following are some old folk tips on predicting rain, as well as ways to dissuade storms ruining your Sunday picnic.

Folk Ways to Predict Rain and Storms

Turning over a new leaf:
When leaves begin to turn over, it’s often a sign of upcoming rain or storms. I’ve written about this phenomenon on a symbolic level here: Turning Over a New Leaf – It’s Symbolic.

Pitter pat, check out the cat:
When cats rub behind their ears during a cat-bath, rain is on its way.

Down came the rain and washed the spider out:
Spiders are predictors of many things in folk lore. Spiders ducking for cover and seeking shelter is a sign of rain or storms.

Oh! My achy breaky bones!:
Perhaps the very best barometer of rains a’coming is aching bodies. I know it certainly works for me. So pay attention to those cranky corns on your feet, creaky bones and stiff joints – it could mean impending rain storms.

Folk Ways to Prevent Storms

Pass the salt, please:
Sprinkling salt on a ceremonial fire is thought to thwart torrential storms in the Spring.

X marks the spot:
Appalachian lore says marking an X on windows with your right index finger protects the home from storm damage.

More bark than bite:
Find a piece of bark from a tree that’s been hit by lightning. Folk tales say keeping this tree bark will protect you from lightning and ill effects of a bad storm.

Get stoned:
No. Not like that! Striking two stones together sends a message to the thunder and storm spirits. One stone must be black, the other white. If you’re about to be caught in a storm outside, strike these two stones together until you are safely under cover – it’s said to protect you from storm damage.


All superstitions aside, deluges of rain and epic storms are nothing to snicker at. It’s up to you whether you want to employ any of these folk tactics to predict or avoid weather threats. Admittedly, I find myself doing some of these things out of habit. I remember my old friend employing her folk remedies and predictions – and I guess they rubbed off on me over time.

Belief is a big ingredient in any method of honoring rain and storms. Symbolism certainly plays its part too. While the folk ways offer nostalgia, I still find the best tact is a path of respect. For example, tap into the symbolic meaning of rain. Once we’re familiar with the deeper meaning of rain and storms, we tend to connect with it. We may even auger a sense of honor and respect for it. I certainly do. In that same vein, I practice a simple ceremony. Just a closing of the eyes and uttering words of honor and gratitude for Mother Nature and the nourishment she provides. I also pay respect to Her power in the form of storms. All that said, I ask for the very best outcome for all involved. Then I sprinkle salt on the fire, X my windows and put Ben-Gay on my poor knees. LOL!

I hope you found this post on folk predictions of rain enjoyable. Maybe it will come in handy. Maybe not. Either way, I’d like to think you came away with a little laugh and a renewed respect for Mother Nature.

As always, thanks for reading!

Mightily Brightly,

Avia

If you liked this post, be sure to check out related articles here:

Natural Phenomenon – A Symbolic Moment

Thursday, December 11th, 2014

NaturalPhenomenon

Someone asked me recently to describe a memorable experience had in Nature. It was hard to pin down just one remarkable communion, but this one moment in time was a real soul-shaker for me….

I remember walking on the sun-baked earth, flat and expansive, somewhere between Midland and Odessa, Texas. It was evening, and the moon was full, casting illumination across the parched expanse. A breeze lifted the heavy heat of the air, and a light sprinkling of rain began, which suddenly gave birth to a torrential rain.

In seconds, the cracks in the earth began to fill. My shoes became sponges as I continued to walk through the accumulating rain (squish, squish). Just as suddenly, the rain stopped and the moon returned, lighting my path once more. In the distance stood a lone mesquite tree – short and squatty – a rebel to stand out so staunchly in the flat dessert terrain.

While focusing on that mesquite tree in the moonlight, I was stopped-short by a behemoth strike of thunder. Lightning followed, cracking open the night like an onyx egg. A tendril of lightning touched a slender branch of the tree and ignited it into a bright fire suspended in the black night. Softer rain then fell, but the fingertips of the mesquite tree kept burning.

I sat and watched this for as long as the fire flickered at the end of the branches. Eventually the fire was quelled, and so was I.

—That was a very symbolic moment for me; namely, it represented all four elements (fire, earth, air, water) in a crazily unlikely, but well-choreographed dance. It was Nature’s allegory about balance, and how sometimes oddly cool things can happen at the most unexpected moments.

So, allow me to ‘pay it forward’ and ask you to contemplate a moment in which you bonded with Nature in such a way as to make it memorable and profound for you. I found re-experiencing this moment really shifting – I hope the same will happen for you.

Brightest,

Avia

Other Pages of Interest:

Meaningful Messages from Nature

Tuning Into Nature’s Symbolism

Moon Meanings and Symbolism

Symbolism of Trees

The ‘Blood Moon’ Lunar Eclipse. A No Nonsense Guide

Tuesday, October 7th, 2014

BloodMoon1

Full ‘Blood Moon’ Lunar Eclipse is upcoming!

The blood moon (also known as hunter moon, harvest moon and/or falling leaf moon) is not uncommon.  However, what’s unique about the blood moon this month is that it’s a full lunar eclipse.

The term “Blood Moon” is fairly new in modern, popular media.  In truth, it’s a term that’s been used by earth-worshippers for a very, very long time.

Blood moons commonly happen during the months of Autumn (Sept-Nov).  In the old religions, and ways of life, this is a time of hefty harvest as well as slaughter.  Blazing bright foliage is reminiscent of the color of blood.  Slaughter of cattle is obviously a blood-related event.

This is a painfully simple explanation for the connection between “blood” and “moon”.

So what’s it all about, Alfie?  And what are we supposed to do with this blood moon stuff!?!?

Here are a few ideas to keep in mind during this blood moon lunar eclipse:

Get Grateful:  As this is a time of the long-held traditional harvest, we might give thanks for what we have gained in our lives while admiring the blood moon.    An attitude of gratitude is powerful any day of the year, but especially during the full harvest moon.

Get Picking:  This is a full moon.  That means it’s a great time to do some harvesting of our own.  Our modern world may not muster every villager, gather in the fields and harvest crops…but that doesn’t mean we don’t have fruits to pick.  Consider ideas ripe for the harvest that need to be picked and worked on.  Also consider loose ends that need tidying before the long winter months hit.  Part of harvest is prevention.

BloodMoon2

Get a Clue:  This is a full lunar eclipse.  Symbolically, a lunar eclipse speaks to us about stuff that is a major presence in our lives.  We know it’s there.  It shines brightly in our lives.  Nonetheless, it’s often blocked by something (time constraints, the ego, ignorance, denial, etc).  During this blood moon eclipse, it might be a good idea to recognize and appreciate the ‘big obvious’ in our lives.  This could be as simple as recognizing mentors, family, our kids or special friends in our lives.  Those people who always shine, but our business or whatever gets in the way of giving thanks for them.

Get a Life:  Blood is a big deal.  It means life.  It is the ocean in which all life might continue to exist on this earth.  This blood moon eclipse might be a good time to get in the flow of that concept.  This could mean paying attention to our health concerns.  It might mean re-devoting ourselves to our “life-blood” which could be our passions, our children, our community…that big aspect of our lives that insures life moves forward.

Give it Up:  Blood is about sacrifice.  Not trying to freak you out, but it’s true that blood has been steeped in the concept of sacrifice since ancient times.  Consequently, this might be a good time to consider the sacrifices others have made for you.  Blood moons are a time for me to thank the military men and women who shed their blood in service to our country.  This is also a good time to consider what kind of sacrifices you can make to better yourself, others, your community, the world.  What can you shed that will lighten the world?

These are just a few symbolic ideas that hold hands with the full blood moon.  However you intend to acknowledge this special lunar eclipse – I hope all your moments with Lady Luna are illuminating.

Brightly,

Avia

More Symbolic Lunar Delights…

Moon Meaning and Symbolism

Full Moon Names Per Month

Moon Signs and Personality Types

Moon Symbolism and Meditation