I’m in the process of moving some of my favorite blog posts from my old blog, Tarot Mom, over here to my new blog. I’m starting with any blog that has mention of Hestia, as that is this blog’s namesake!
Hestia and Headcovering
April 11, 2011
A couple weeks ago, I was cleaning my bedroom and found this scarf that I have never worn as a scarf. I have used it for a small altar cloth from time to time, or to wrap a deck of tarot cards in… but it had been stuffed in a drawer for awhile, unseen and forgotten. When I found it, I paused, and felt that gentle urging of Hestia, saying “keep this out”. So instead of putting it back in the drawer, I put it on my altar, folded neatly next to my Hestia Statue. I didn’t know what on earth I was going to use it for, but I figured it’s purpose would come to me if I just listened.
Maybe only one, or two days later, I stumbled upon a facebook conversation about Pagan Headcovering. I was intrigued, I had never heard of or considered that headcovering, or veiling would be a pagan thing to do… except for in cases of the people who like to dress up in robes and hoods for ceremonial magick and rituals. I learned that a lot of Pagan / Witchy women feel drawn to headcovering or veiling in their daily lives as a way of honoring and connecting to their deity. And guess what Goddess kept popping up in articles, blogs, and conversations about Headcovering? Hestia, of course! The bells are going off in my head at this point, as I had just placed that scarf next to Hestia on my altar, trusting that she would let me know how she wanted me to use it…
I joined the facebook group called Covered In Light and met a wide variety of women who choose to veil, or cover their hair as a spiritual practice. I started asking questions and reading discussions and learned that for each woman, there was a very different and very personal reason for choosing to cover. Some find it very comforting. As empathic people, wearing a headcovering can help you feel more grounded, and more protected from the unwanted energies of other people. Some women commented that they felt more intuitive when covered; and spoke of wearing a headcovering when doing tarot or oracle readings or for going to ritual. Some women felt it was a call to modesty, and a practice of declaring their status as either a married woman or as someone devoted to the Goddess. Not all the women here were called by Hestia or Vesta, but there is quite a wide variety of deities and pantheons that seem to have brought these women to the practice of veiling. Many women commented that once they started headcovering, they felt more connected to their Goddess, more feminine, sexier, more powerful, and more comfortable in their roles at home. Some feel drawn to cover their hair/heads in public, while others feel drawn only to do it while at home. The wonderful thing about the group Covered In Light is that through this diversity, all the women are supportive and tolerant of each other. No one says, “This is how or why you should cover”, but it is all about learning about eachothers’ reasons and experiences, learning from each other, and supporting one another.
So I began that very day to experiment with headcovering and find out exactly what it meant for me. I have discovered that if I put on a headcovering when I say my morning prayers to Hestia, I stay more focused on my housework through the day. Feeling the scarf on my head reminds me that my daily tasks are a reflection of my devotion to the Goddess, to myself, and my family. In other words, the headcovering keeps me mindful, living in the present moment. It is very much like an active meditation. I also feel more intuitive about what housework needs to be done. Sometimes it’s hard to know where to start in a home with three children where the messes abound. But when I am covered – instead of feeling overwhelmed and frustrated, I tend to feel more peaceful and less worried about everything that needs to get done. I’m easier on myself, easier on the kids, and happier with the progress I make. It becomes less about how much I get done, and more about the loving attitude I come to each small task with. Mostly I feel very comfortable with my head covered, but if I start to feel uncomfortable, I take that as a cue from the Goddess that my “work” is done. I take the headcovering off and take a break to do something for myself – like read a book or play on the internet… so in this sense I feel that headcovering has made me more aware of how I take care of myself as well. I’m overdoing things less, taking more time for myself, and feeling overall more connected with Goddess than ever before.
Another thing I have noticed when I am covered; I feel a lot more in-tune to not only The Goddess and Divine, but to messages from my family. First of all, when I am covered and cleaning, I am having a lot more of those inspired moments when something I have been thinking about suddenly makes sense, or I get inspired ideas for art and craft projects, blog and journaling ideas, etc. Today for example, I put on my headcovering and said my devotional prayers to Hestia, intending to get as much housework done as possible. I got a little cleaning done, but the one thing that kept coming to mind was this blog post. Different points I wanted to make, different thoughts of what to write…. finally I stopped resisting and just came to sit down and write! I am feeling like wearing the headcovering takes that energetic flow from The Divine and my Higher Self that flows through the crown chakra, and instead of that energy flowing away from me; being covered helps pull those energies down into my third eye, throat, and heart chakras to be assimilated from there. Before experiencing this, I would have assumed that wearing something on my head might block this flow from the Crown Chakra, but now I am experiencing quite the opposite. It comes right back to the way that Covering just keeps me in a higher state of awareness; fully in the here and now. I’m a lot more aware of what my children and husband are saying to me, what they need from me, and what they feel… but without their feelings overwhelming me. As if the covering works as a kind of filter, I can understand my children’s feelings without getting wrapped up in the emotion and frustrated by my empathy. I’m becoming a better listener, and I’m also much more aware of the words I say and how I treat others when I am covered.
I’m personally not drawn to wearing the covering outside of my home or in public. I don’t feel like Hestia is calling me to cover at all times, but just when I want to feel more connected to my role as a housewife and mother. For me, it is something that keeps me more centered and grounded while at home… although I have kept my scarf on to make a couple quick trips to the grocery store.
When I first started veiling, I drew an Angel card from the “Daily Guidance From Your Angels” oracle card deck by Doreen Virtue. This is the card I got; (This was the day after joining Covered in Light and only my second day covering)
I had been asking myself if this was really right for me, really something I needed to do or wanted to do. This angel is Covered! I looked through the deck and there is not a single other angel card that depicts artwork of an angel with it’s head covered in any way! Later that day I felt an urge to go to the mall and just walk around. I didn’t really have money to spend, but I just kept feeling that nudge to “Go!” So I went, and found another beautiful scarf, on sale! I knew it was my gift from the Goddess and the Angels for listening to my heart, so I bought it for myself.
Here is a wonderful prayer to Hestia that was written by another member of Covered in Light and I have been using it when I veil before going about my household duties;
Keeper of the flame
Goddess of the Hearth
Bless this the hearth
Of Thy sister,
She who comes
Veiled before you
May the flame
Never be extinguished
May your blessing and spirit
Always abide here”
UPDATE – Current thoughts on Headcovering
Dec. 26, 2014
I still like to wear scarves and practice veiling or headcovering often! My collection of scarves has grown in number and color, and I’ve learned some great techniques for tying them! (I don’t have a recent picture, but I will try to add some soon!)
The color of my headcovering has come to be an important part of my practice. If I feel like I need some protection, my black scarves come in handy. Feeling homey and earthy? Browns. Needing some power, energy or fire? Reds, of course! Wanting to connect with Water energy. . . blue shades are the way to go. I love combining the magickal attributes of colors in choosing what I am going to wear as my head covering.
I don’t cover every day, but it’s still something I do often. Some days it’s just for fashion, and other days it’s because I feel I need the extra spiritual support and focus. Depending on my intention when I put it on, it may bring me comfort, focus, energy, strength, or determination.