Its a life long goal of mine to be out enjoying a bright sunny day, clear skies, only to stop gaze up and say " there's a storm coming"... and to be right! In fact it got me thinking about how not only elements but also traditional superstitions and lore compliment one another and how we can utilize them in our daily practices.
Growing up in the ocean state with most of my family residing in the small fishing town that is Little Compton, weather lore is common. My uncles and cousins as fisherman know the weather better than most meteorologist ( fight me if you think I'm wrong!). I also grew up with a mother that didn't drive, so we spent lots of time traveling on bus and foot to our daily activities, which in turn meant getting caught in rain storms, trekking through snow, and hiding from the heat in the shadows of telephone poles.
Like most folklore weather lore is passed down through speech and writing, and comes from daily life
It wasn't the ominous "a storms coming" moment that I still dream of, but when I was in 8th grade I can remember being outside with a group of friends and the highschool boy I had been dating. As he walked me home from the basketball courts I noticed the mackerel sky and said " its going to rain" he scoffed and laughed at me as I explained " no really its a thing". Slightly annoyed I said "watch, 24 hours!".... it rained that afternoon as he walked home... But what I really remember was multiple years later the random Facebook message popping up from said boy saying that he always checks the clouds now to see if its going to rain.. albeit he was likely just trying to slide into those DM's but still.. its a prime example of how folk and weather lore is passed on..
Some Weather Lore I personally grew up with :
Big snow flakes means the snow will stop soon
Its going to rain if the cows are laying down Mackerel sky no 24 hours dry Red in the morning sailors take warning, red at night sailors delight
Rain before seven, clear by eleven
A Migraine = storm is coming
I can remember sitting with my mother on our front porch listening to the thunder storms rolling in, the feeling of the cool breeze and the stiff wicker bench as we just sat there.. soaking it in watching the clouds build and the pressure dip.
My husband likes to argue with me about the science behind these sayings and in all honesty there are some interesting facts that support them, but when they were first told there was no google or encyclopedia set telling us what it meant. They were created by noticing and connecting with our surroundings, the elements each day leave us messages , we just need to listen.
Today I still sit on my own front porch and watch the rain clouds cross the neighborhood... ill admit my neighbors probably think I'm crazy as I'm often bundled up with a stack of blankets while I sit there.
Weather was never something that felt limiting, yes rainy days sucked, snow usually meant more time, and the heat often meant we were going to adventure to somewhere with AC, but either way we still had things to do and the weather was just an ingredient to our day.
Using weather lore in our practice gives another great and simple way to not only connect with the elements but also our ancestors ( both of blood, and spirit). Its like returning to our roots, becoming more aware of our surrounding and how it effects not only our Magick but our emotions, relations and energy levels.
Some of my personal weather correspondences:
Lightning storms - (protection & breaking down obstacles) Lightning is often destructive and sudden. Its loud but to the point, making this a great time to focus on breaking free and creating new opportunities. Discarding the things that once held you back while paving a new and empowered path.
Rainstorms- (purification & release) Rain is renewing while also having the ability to easily become destructive This is a great time for shadow work, self forgiveness, and cleansing.
Snowstorms- (purification) Like rain, snow is cleansing, there's just something so pure about fresh fallen snow, its clean, crisp, and new. Although very similar to rain and its properties personally I find the crisp coldness of snow to pack an extra punch making it more direct and to the point as opposed to rain that is more about 'feeling' through the process.
Wind storms- (growth & change) Wind often catches you by surprise, there's little you can do to avoid it aside from hiding and it can easily become destructive without you realizing. Wind storms to me signify not just any change but often uncontrollable change and transformation.
Heat wave- (protection & energy) Connected to the sun there is fire element energy when it comes to a heat wave, it can leave you feeling drained (physically and metaphorically) while also providing that extra punch to get the job done. It keeps you on your toes and forces you to be resourceful.
Heavy Fog- (protection & patience) Likely one of my favorite weather conditions fog is heavy, gloomy, and mysterious. It forces you to slow down and really think about your plans and actions.
Of course each aspect of these conditions can be broken down more, but this seemed like a good starting place. Something to make you stop, notice your surroundings, connect and utilize the Magick around every corner.