About Memory

Please be extra careful today and over the weekend. Tomorrow is Beltane, one of the major Satanic holidays. Today is Walpurgisnacht or May Eve. These are names for the evening before Beltane, which has its own rituals. If you have been having flashbacks or feeling anxious, frightened, or despairing, this is probably the reason. Your mood will lighten when the weekend has passed.

I wish that you all may live through these hard days in a safe place, with safe people you can reach out to. May the ways you choose to handle your feelings bring healing to all parts of you. May your younger parts feel your strength and compassion and be reassured. May they hear you when you tell them that it is different now, that there are older parts of you who understand and who believe them and send them love and compassion.

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There are two announcements after the main part of this post.

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Survivors, as well as people who have never been abused, frequently question the literal truth of their memories, especially those that have been forgotten. Few people get access to their abusers’ diaries or find other outside confirmation of memories. Given the nature of ritual abuse, it is little wonder that most survivors are often met with disbelief and denial if they tell of their experiences.

Remember that memories of childhood abuse are a record of a terrified child’s best effort to figure out what is really happening. Children don’t have the experience or logical skills to interpret events as clearly as adults do. Fear, pain, and drugs also cloud a child’s ability (and an adult’s ability, for that matter) to assess a situation accurately.

Part of becoming an adult is reviewing what we remember and reinterpreting its significance. Were we tricked into believing something that wasn’t true? Did we misinterpret? Have we condensed two events into one, believed another’s interpretation of events, or taken a fantasy literally?

Children are lied to and told fantasies all the time, and they believe the lies until they have a chance to examine them. How many people have said, “I had a happy childhood; we always had food on the table,” and have ignored clear evidence of deprivation, neglect, or beatings until others question them? How many adults remember believing in Santa Claus? The collection, codification, and interpretation of memories is an ongoing process and an integral part of maturation and growth.

I am intensely unwilling to believe that human beings are capable of inflicting such cruelty on others and I share the universal human desire to view my family and community as kind and loving. But, given all the evidence, I must reluctantly accept that I was treated with contempt and sadism. If it wasn’t ritual abuse, how did I learn all those methods of torture? Who taught me the ideology that glorified pain and death? I wish I could find another explanation, but none seems plausible.

I realize that not all my memories are literal truth; some, in retrospect, seem to be staged events that I believed were real at the time. I probably never will know if any one particular memory is totally accurate, or whether I was deceived in whole or in part. I might also be remembering threatening scenarios that adults described so vividly that I was convinced they had happened.

But only ritual abuse explains the knowledge I had as a very young child of bizarre sexual acts, certain “magical” rites and beliefs, animal and human anatomy. Only ritual abuse explains my pain, my symptoms, the damage to my heart. This is my truth. I do not like it, but I must live it.

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I haven’t read that in years. There is nothing I would change except some grammar – I have different ideas about the use of commas today. I took the liberty of making some changes in the punctuation. (Grammarly is very helpful. There is a free version that is perfectly adequate. I’ve been using it for a year. It spots misspelled words, misplaced or missing commas and hyphens, subjects and verbs that don’t agree, and even words that are ambiguous or over-used.)

If I were writing this today, I would add a section on the difference between narrative memory and traumatic memory.

Narrative memory tells a story. ” I started to learn how to read in first grade. By the time I was in fourth grade, I could read well enough to enjoy books. With each passing year, my vocabulary grew, my speed picked up, and my understanding of what the author was conveying deepened.” Traumatic memory is a snapshot. It seems outside of time, nothing comes before, nothing comes after. It is either bathed in emotion – fear, dread, panic – or frozen in numbness. Traumatic memory is the source of flashbacks.

I would read up on how the brain forms each kind of memory and which parts of the brain are activated. I can’t write this section now because I don’t understand the neurology and biochemistry well enough. I do remember that different parts of the brain react when the trauma elicits fight, flee, or freeze behavior. And fainting, too, for that matter. Maybe, when I am more educated, I will write a summary of what is now known of the neurological basis of memory.

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Upcoming Holidays

April
4/26 Grand Climax/De Meur
4/26 Full Moon
4/30 Walpurgisnacht/May Eve

May
5/1 Beltane
5/9 Mothers’ Day
5/12 (?) Armed Forces Day
5/23 Pentecost
5/26 Total Lunar Eclipse 
5/26 Full Moon
5/31 Memorial Day

June
 6/10 Annular Solar Eclipse
 6/20 Fathers’ Day
 6/21 Summer solstice
 6/23 Midsummer’s Eve
 6/24 (?) St John’s Day
 6/24 Full Moon

July 
 
7/4 Independence Day 
 7/23 Full Moon 
 7/25 St. James’ Day/Festival of the Horned God 
 7/27 Grand Climax

Dates Important to Nazi and Neo-Nazi groups
5/8 V-E Day (Victory in Europe, WW2) 
5/17 Shavuot (Festival of Harvest, Festival of Moses receiving the Ten Commandments) 
6/6 D-Day (Invasion of France in WW2) 
7/18 Tisha B’Av (Jewish Day of Mourning)  
7/29 Hitler proclaimed leader of the Nazi party

(NOTE: Not all groups meet on Jewish holidays. Some groups also mark Candlemas, Beltane, Lammas, Halloween, the solstices, and the equinoxes.)

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* You can find more information on the following holidays at:
Walpurgisnacht/May Eve: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2017/04/20/walpurgisnacht/
Beltane: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2013/04/28/beltane/
Mothers’ Day: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2016/04/26/mothers-day/
Fathers’ Day: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2020/06/20/ritual-abuse-and-fathers-day/
Summer Solstice: (corrected text) https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2013/06/15/well-this-is-embarrassing/
Lammas: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/category/lamas/
and https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2012/07/23/august-ritual-dates/ 
Feast of the Beast/Bride of Satan: Part 1 https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2013/08/31/the-feast-of-the-beast/
Feast of the Beast/Bride of Satan: Part 2 https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2017/03/20/feast-of-the-beast-part-ii/
Fall Equinox: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2012/09/16/the-fall-equinox/ Halloween: (personal) https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2016/10/11/halloween/ 
Halloween: (background) https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2011/10/02/samhainhalloween/
Thanksgiving: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2016/11/20/thanksgiving/
Yule/Winter Solstice: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2012/12/15/yulewinter-solstice/ 
Candlemas: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2012/01/21/candlemas/
Valentine’s Day: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2016/02/10/valentines-day/
Spring Equinox: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2012/02/13/the-spring-equinox/

Easter: personal (for background, see Spring Equinox) https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2014/04/21/easter-blues/

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* Survivorship Regular Conference – Saturday and Sunday, May 22 – 23, 2021
Survivorship Clinician’s Conference – Friday, May 21, 2021

Information on the speakers, topics, and registration is at: https://survivorship.org/the-survivorship-ritual-abuse-and-mind-control-2021-conference/

 

The May 2021 issue of SMART’s newsletter summarizes these articles about Elizabeth Loftus.– A Brief History of the False Memory Research of Elizabeth Loftus   
– Ethics Complaints Filed Against FMSF Board Member Elizabeth Loftus   
– “Lost in a Shopping Mall” A Breach of Professional Ethics  
– Quotes: Elizabeth Loftus, Ph.D. 
– The Alleged Ethical Violations of Elizabeth Loftus in the Case of Jane Doe
 https://ritualabuse.us/smart/elizabeth-loftus/

Internal Family Systems Therapy Workshop

There are two announcements after the main part of this post.

I attended a 12-hour Workshop on Internal Family Systems Therapy. It was on ZOOM, and I am pretty comfortable using ZOOM now. I wasn’t triggered by being on video, and there were so many people attending that I just faded into the background. 

I noticed that I have the world’s messiest bookcase as background. I have no desire to tear it apart, find new places for all the papers and vases and other miscellaneous items, nor do I wish to subject myself to the frustration of not being able to find stuff when the bookshelf beautification project is complete. I have some lovely ZOOM virtual backgrounds, which I use on occasion. I do get spooked by seeing parts of me disappearing and reappearing as the software tries to catch up with itself. I shall therefore offer my bookcase, as a kindness, to make many people proud that their offices are tidier than mine. 

I wasn’t triggered by being in a large group, either. I didn’t have to interact with anybody. I also was under no pressure to remember anybody’s name or what we talked about. Actually, there was no pressure to remember anything, come to think about it. That was a treat because when I attend an in-person workshop, I’m expected to spend breaks and lunchtimes with others, to join email groups, and to remember all sorts of things, whether I am presenting or not.

I didn’t know anything about Internal Family Systems Therapy when I signed up for the workshop. Years ago, I had looked at their website and decided that it was pretty complicated and I didn’t have the time to study it. That was the sum total of my knowledge of the subject.

The workshop was well-organized, the slides were clear, and the presenter was knowledgeable. The content was interesting, and I learned a lot. I’d like to share a very brief summary with you all.

IFS theory postulates that everybody has a Self, everybody has experienced trauma to some degree, and everybody has developed parts to deal with the trauma. These parts came into being to protect the Self from being overwhelmed. Now the person has everything inside themselves that they need to heal. The therapist doesn’t have to give suggestions or advice or teach the client anything. All he/she has to do is guide the internal process of the client. Here’s an example:

T: “Is there a part of you that has thoughts or feelings about X?”
C. “There’s a part that’s mad.”
T. “What’s that like?”
C. Describes how the mad part makes things more complicated, how it would be better if that part went away.
T. “What’s the worst thing that could happen if that part of you stopped making things more complicated?”
C. “I would get overwhelmed and couldn’t cope.”
T. (to client’s Self, sense of “me”) “That mad part of you is doing a very good job of trying to protect you by distracting you.
T. “I wonder what would happen if, just for a second, that part stopped protecting you. If it stepped back, just for a moment, what would that be like?”
C. “I would okay for a short time. I know I would.”
T. Asks both the Self and the part if they are willing to try it. After getting permission, coaches them on how to step back and leave a quiet space between them. Then asks what it was like for each.

See how everything happens internally? Each time the client works with a part, the Self gets stronger, and the part does less and less protecting. Since the protective behavior (cutting, eating or not, worrying, criticizing, etc.) is a distraction to help the Self not deal with the trauma, symptoms diminish. The therapist doesn’t address the symptoms, just guides the client through the process of experimenting and negotiating with the parts.

Once the protectors are all on board and have faith that the Self really is strong enough to deal with the trauma, the healing phase of therapy begins.

There are parts, called “exiles” in IFS therapy, which hold the memories and feelings from the trauma. The therapist guides the client through the process of meeting an exile and learning about the age and the trauma in general terms. The next steps are finding out what the part would have liked to have happened, determining that the adult Self can give what is needed, and then providing it through guided imagery. At that point, the exile part is able to release the trauma and stops being stuck in the past. The trauma becomes a memory and does not have the overwhelmingly intense images and feelings of a flashback.  

I like that the client is not pathologized and that, from the start, the therapist conveys that the client has all that is needed to heal inside themself. I like that all parts of the person are treated with respect and always given freedom of choice. I like that the purpose of a symptom, not the symptom itself, is the focus of attention. It is a gentle, compassionate approach to trauma treatment.

I don’t like that IFST would take a long time for many therapists to learn because of the difference in approach and language and the number of protocols for different processes. (It’s sort of like EMDR in this respect.) Although from reading their website I gathered that it could be blended with other modalities of therapy, it would take much thought and time to do so.

Here is The Internal Family Sytems Institute’s website. https://ifs-institute.com

Browse through the News section for free Webinars and the Resources section for articles, videos, and podcasts. The bibliography in the Research section has a wealth of books, which you can sample at Google Books, Amazon, or Questia.


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Upcoming Holidays

April
4/1 April Fool’s Day
4/1 Maundy Thursday (commemoration of the Last Supper)
4/2 Good Friday
4/3 Holy Saturday
4/4 Easter Sunday
4/8 Day of the Masters
4/26 Grand Climax/De Meur
4/26 Full Moon
4/30 Walpurgisnacht/May Eve


May
5/1 Beltane
5/9 Mothers’ Day
5/12 (?) Armed Forces Day
5/23 Pentecost
5/26 Total Lunar Eclipse 
5/26 Full Moon
5/31 Memorial Day

June
 6/10 Annular Solar Eclipse
 6/20 Fathers’ Day
 6/21 Summer solstice
 6/23 Midsummer’s Eve
 6/24 (?) St John’s Day
 6/24 Full Moon

Dates Important to Nazi and Neo-Nazi groups
4/4 Hitler’s alternate birthday (Note: Hitler was born on Easter, so Nazis celebrate his actual birthday, 4/20, and Easter of the current year. This year, Easter falls on 4/4.)
4/8 Yom HaShoah (Holocaust Remembrance Day)
4/15 Yom Ha’atzmaut (Israeli Independence Day)
4/20 Hitler’s birthday
4/15 Yom Ha’atzmaut (Israeli Independence Day)
5/8 V-E Day (Victory in Europe, WW2) 
5/17 Shavuot (Festival of Harvest, Festival of Moses receiving the Ten Commandments)
(NOTE: Not all groups meet on Jewish holidays. Some groups also mark Candlemas, Beltane, Lammas, Halloween, the solstices, and the equinoxes.)

* You can find more information on the following holidays at: 

Spring Equinox: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2012/02/13/the-spring-equinox/

Easter: personal (for background, see Spring Equinox) https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2014/04/21/easter-blues/

Walpurgisnacht/May Eve: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2017/04/20/walpurgisnacht/

Beltane: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2013/04/28/beltane/

Mothers’ Day: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2016/04/26/mothers-day/

Fathers’ Day: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2020/06/20/ritual-abuse-and-fathers-day/

Summer Solstice: (corrected text) https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2013/06/15/well-this-is-embarrassing/
Lammas: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/category/lamas/
and https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2012/07/23/august-ritual-dates/
Feast of the Beast/Bride of Satan: Part 1 https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2013/08/31/the-feast-of-the-beast/

Feast of the Beast/Bride of Satan: Part 2 https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2017/03/20/feast-of-the-beast-part-ii/

Fall Equinox: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2012/09/16/the-fall-equinox/

Halloween: (personal) https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2016/10/11/ 
Halloween: (background) https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2011/10/02/samhainhalloween/
 
Thanksgiving: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2016/11/20/thanksgiving/ 
Yule/Winter Solstice: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2012/12/15/yulewinter-solstice/
Candlemas: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2012/01/21/candlemas/
 
Valentine’s Day: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2016/02/10/valentines-day/

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*Highlights of a New York Times article


The Moderna and Pfizer vaccines are proving highly effective in preventing coronavirus infections under real-world conditions, the C.D.C. found.

Troubling variants were circulating during the time of the study – from December 14, 2020 to March 13, 2021 — yet the vaccines still provided powerful protection.

The C.D.C. enrolled 3,950 people at high risk of being exposed to the virus because they were health care workers, first responders, or others on the front lines….

Among those who were fully vaccinated, there were .04 infections per 1,000 person-days, meaning that among 1,000 persons there would be .04 infections in a day.

There were 0.19 infections per 1,000 person-days among those who had had one dose of the vaccine. In contrast, there were 1.38 infections per 1,000 person-days in unvaccinated people.

 https://www.nytimes.com/2021/03/29/world/pfizer-moderna-covid-vaccines-infection.html?campaign_id=60&emc=edit_na_20210329&instance_id=0&nl=breaking-news&ref=headline&regi_id=112647142&segment_id=54428&user_id=c9efd3687ea12eec8e32e61a5b86de7d

 

* Survivorship Regular Conference – Saturday and Sunday May 22 – 23, 2021
Clinician’s Conference – Friday May 21, 2021
Information on the speakers, topics, and registration is at https://survivorship.org/the-survivorship-ritual-abuse-and-mind-control-2021-conference/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Integration of Self-Images

I have, for years, thought of Satanic ritual abuse as the principal form of trauma I suffered. The mind control experiments and the child pornography were add-ons, so to speak. They came later and ended sooner than the Satanic stuff.

There was a two-year period when the Satanic abuse was the only form of abuse I suffered. It burned into my mind and seared my spirit. The core beliefs I held about myself and the outside world were twisted to conform to the cult members’ beliefs. It also deeply damaged my ability to assess situations or other people because the double binds and ever-shifting demands confused me terribly. In trying to read a situation, my mind bounced from one set of assumptions to its opposite, never landing on anything solid.

When I was in a double bind, I adopted one side, then the other, never knowing which to believe or what to act on. If, in desperation, I flipped a mental coin, I was left in confusion. “I should have done X, but maybe Y (the choice I made) was the one I should have picked, but no, looking back, X is what I should have done.”

Here are some of the core beliefs I acquired during first the training (I think of it as Sunday School) and then the actual rituals:

I am evil
It was my fault, I am guilty
I am stupid
I am ugly
Nobody loves me
I deserve to be hurt
I am not good enough
People are dangerous
People are cruel
There is no escape
I have no control over anything that happens

Well, I could go on and on.

There was little to counter these images of myself and of others. My mother was separated from my father because of the war and exhausted from the responsibilities of being a single parent, albeit one with money enough to hire women to care for her two pre-schoolers. She had no living family to turn to, no close friends nearby. She also had a poor self-image; she believed she was not good enough or intelligent enough to manage all these challenges. Don’t know if she still had to trudge off to rituals every holiday. I hope not.

Anyway, at home, I got another set of “not good enough” “not lovable” messages and no tools to patch together my shattered self.

When I entered first grade, I was enrolled in an experimental mind control program designed to test if various programming systems were easy to install, easy to use, difficult to break into, and durable. I was a desirable subject because I was intelligent and compliant and came completely dissociated. Here I got my first exposure to messages that were different from my core beliefs. It was a glimpse into another world.

What do you call the researcher who experiments on you? Programmer? Handler? Scientist? I called him my teacher. I was treated by my teacher as if I were smart and likable. I think he truly did like me, not for myself, but because I was so easy to work with. I made his job easy.

I loved working with him because it was challenging and fun. I bonded with him, as well as with the work we did together. We were together during the school year for six years until, I believe, his project lost its funding. I don’t know if I got to say goodbye to him, but I think I did. I was shut down – the systems that had been installed were made inaccessible to me and I was made amnesic for my teacher and all the work we did together. This, to me, was an unconscious implicit promise that he would return, reverse the shut-down, and we would start working together again.

I bonded with him so tightly that he became the ideal man – “my type.” I can reconstruct his looks and his personality from studying the kind of guys I fell for over and over again. I wonder whether the belief that he would soon return gave me the strength to endure the remaining years of abuse and the hope that I could one day be happy again.

The third source of my self-image came from the child pornography section of my life. There I learned that I was an object to be sold over and over. My worth was tied to my ability to make good money for the group of pimps that ran the child pornography ring. The men handling me changed frequently, depending on my age and the setting I was being sold into. I didn’t have enough contact with any of them to form a sense of attachment, and I could not even remember the men I was sold to. I am sure that there were repeats, but they were infrequent. Besides, I was programmed not to remember anybody!

Some of the core beliefs implanted by the cult were strengthened, others not, or only minimally so. Of the items on the list above, only “I am evil,” “It was my fault, “I am guilty,” “I am stupid,” “I am ugly,” and “I am not good enough” were not reinforced.

The self-image I developed with my teacher did not erase the basic self-image implanted by the cult. It existed in a parallel universe, off in its own dissociated little world. I have been spending many long years trying to integrate it into my core self. That work is not yet complete, but I have come a long way.

I had to remember what happened in the cult and with my teacher and remember how I felt. The contrast was dazzling! They were polar opposites. For a long time, those beliefs sat side by side, like the poetry books and RA books on my bookshelves. Then, slowly, they started to merge. Things were no longer black and white; they were grey – or, rather, they were in color. I had zebra stripes; a mean streak, a kind streak, times when I was compassionate or judgmental, clueless, indifferent. All sorts of different things, all part of the same person.

When I only knew the cult, I was one-dimensional, evil to the core, worthless, and guilty. With the advent of my teacher, I became two-dimensional, but I could only be in one dimension at a time. And when the amnesia lifted and I could work on these issues, I became multi-dimensional, deep, multi-colored, sparkly, all at the same time.

The mind is a strange and wondrous thing. And the weirdest thing of all, this happened without any integration of the tiny little pieces of me.

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Upcoming Holidays

March
3/21 Spring Equinox
3/24 Feast of the Beast/Bride of Satan
3/28 Full Moon
3/28 Palm Sunday

April
4/1 April Fool’s Day
4/1 Maundy Thursday (commemoration of the Last Supper)
4/2 Good Friday
4/3 Holy Saturday
4/4 Easter Sunday
4/8 Day of the Masters
4/26 Grand Climax/De Meur
4/26 Full Moon

May
5/1 Beltane
5/9 Mothers’ Day
5/12 (?) Armed Forces Day
5/23 Pentecost
5/26 Total Lunar Eclipse
5/26 Full Moon
5/31 Memorial Day

Dates Important to Nazi and Neo-Nazi groups
3/28 – 4/4  Passover/Pesach (Deliverance of the Jewish people from slavery in Egypt)
4/4 Hitler’s alternate birthday (Note: Hitler was born on Easter, so Nazis celebrate his actual birthday, 4/20, and Easter of the current year. This year Easter falls on 4/4.)
4/8 Yom HaShoah  (Holocaust Remembrance Day)
4/15 Yom Ha’atzmaut (Israeli Independence Day)
4/20 Hitler’s birthday
4/15 Yom Ha’atzmaut (Israeli Independence Day)
5/8 V-E Day (Victory in Europe, WW2)
5/17 Shavuot (Festival of Harvest, Festival of Moses receiving the Ten Commandments)
(NOTE: Not all groups meet on Jewish holidays. Some groups also mark Candlemas, Beltane, Lammas, Halloween, the solstices, and the equinoxes.)

* You can find more information on the following holidays at:

Spring Equinox: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2012/02/13/the-spring-equinox/

Easter: personal (for background, see Spring Equinox) https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2014/04/21/easter-blues/

Walpurgisnacht/May Eve: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2017/04/20/walpurgisnacht/

Beltane: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2013/04/28/beltane/

Mothers’ Day: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2016/04/26/mothers-day/

Fathers’ Day: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2020/06/20/ritual-abuse-and-fathers-day/

Summer Solstice: (corrected text) https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2013/06/15/well-this-is-embarrassing/
Lammas: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/category/lamas/
and https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2012/07/23/august-ritual-dates/
Feast of the Beast/Bride of Satan: Part 1 https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2013/08/31/the-feast-of-the-beast/

Feast of the Beast/Bride of Satan: Part 2 https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2017/03/20/feast-of-the-beast-part-ii/

Fall Equinox: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2012/09/16/the-fall-equinox/

Halloween: (personal) https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2016/10/11/ 
Halloween: (background) https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2011/10/02/samhainhalloween/
 
Thanksgiving: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2016/11/20/thanksgiving/ 
Yule/Winter Solstice: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2012/12/15/yulewinter-solstice/
Candlemas: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2012/01/21/candlemas/
 
Valentine’s Day: https://ritualabuse.wordpress.com/2016/02/10/valentines-day/