To reveal this would be to break my oath of secrecy. I can say, though, that it really is an ancient rite, dating far back in time, back even before 1951, and I have learned it from an unbroken lineage. As Gerald said, it takes a resolution to make a new year.
First, we don't believe in a "Resolution" or a "List of Resolutions." We believe in many lists. Second, "Making New Year's Resolutions" is part of the three levels, or worlds, and the resolution maker simply rises from one level to another. Hail to the New Year!
The word "Resolution" comes from a very specific Old English word ("resolvere"), and it only properly applies to certain acts or processes of list making by those of East Anglia or those descended therefrom. As for the rest, I suppose they are doing something remotely similar to making resolutions, but you must remember that traditional resolutions are not to be confused with the modern resolutions...
In County Hunghover on New Year's day, they still observe Lady Resolutia's Scribbling, which is a survival of the old pagan List Making petitionary rite. Today, modern pagans are reviving the practice, dedicated to the Tipsy Lady and the Green Scribe.
"Making a List" is a phrase that summarizes many magical structures erected and timed by the practitioner to produce the energy necessary for the intention of making resolutions for the new year. For example, the astrological correspondences have to be correct, the moon has to be waxing (if the practitioner intends to follow the resolutions) or waning (if the practitioner merely wishes to keep the resolutions for reference), and the practitioner has to prepare herself through fasting and proper incantations. Note: Certain forms of invocation (summoning a list of resolutions inside your mind) can produce abnormal or even dangerous results and should only be constructed within a properly erected circle...
Thinking in terms of "listing" and "resolutions" is simply looking at the formal, typically perceived structure of resolution making space-time. We, instead, focus on the possibility of the resolution making itself; what appears to be a random act is thus actually the norm -- it is The List which is the freak of chance. Indeed, quantum mechanics now demonstrates what we knew all along: Two or more lists can simultaneously exist in the same place at the same time. Thus, by attuning ourselves to the dynamic energy (called "listing"), we can manifest the resolution. Of course, to the unknowledgeable, this appears as making a list of resolutions.
The Lyst Mayker ("list maker" is a term of patriarchal oppression) seeks to reclaim for herself the right to make Resolutions, after it had been denied to her for centuries. By doing so, she reawakens the power of the Resolution within herself.
You've got to be kidding!
Resolutions are made to arrive at the Truth, of course! Keep in mind that 99% of everything written about Making-New-Year's-Resolutions is pure hogwash, based on biased sources. Yes, there were a few unfortunate sacrifices of list makers in the past, but that is over now...
Because it seems right to us at the time. We use some Egyptian-style paper and Celtic-sounding words for the Resolutions and incorporate some Native American elements into our Pen-names, like, Scribe-Who-Waffles-and-Runs-from-the-Wolves.
In twilight times and under sparkling stars, those properly trained can still see the writers making their lists. Reconnecting with these "fey-scribblers" as they write is crucial to restoring the balance between the energies of modern development and living with the earth.
Growing up, we didn't think much about "making resolutions." A list was a list. It was made because that was what worked to get the New Year started. We focused on what worked, and we worked more with the elders of the list makers and less with all this "guardians of the New Year" business. We didn't get our concepts of "Lists" or "Resolutions for the New Year" from Gardner, either. You can choose not to believe us since we did not "write down" on paper what was listed to us orally (which, at certain times in history, was the only way to avoid becoming New Year's fireworks!), but that doesn't change the facts: There were real list makers, and they really did make resolutions!
The writers make their lists to lose weight, get a job and move away from home because they have mothers like me who are always testing new recipes on them!
Earnest, dedicated pagans resolving to improve themselves! Do you think that is all there is to writing lists? Do you dare to know the dark side of making resolutions and the other path to self-development?
We make lists of resolutions because we chose this as one of our lessons to learn in this life. Besides, there is so much incense and bright, white paper to cover in the New Year.
Well, 'cause I read in this really kewl book that said, like, we are supposed to make New Year's Resolutions, right?
Posting On An Online Discussion Group
What do you mean why should we make New Year's Resolutions????!!!??? Haven't you read **any** of the previous posts? We've been [expletive deleted] debating every word of that question, painstakingly trying to come to some kind of answer. I know you wrote "all i wnted to know was why should we make a list of resolutions, im not looking for any Resolution spells" but I'm fed up with newbies who can't even bother to REEEEEEEEAAADDD the posts on that very topic! No, this is *not* a flame. But, I and several others here have the *maturity* to properly explore and respond to this question, and we were properly trained; we *didn't* just read a book and think we were full-fledged list writers. (phew, feeling much better after ranting.)
The list makers don't want to be part of a coven.
Making a list is a way to reconnect with the healing, visionary lifeways of the past. Wise Women have long known this, but increasingly the Wise Guy's Movement is adding more men to the list making too.
Hey, are you guys really making New Year's Resolutions? Can you give me a spell that will make me a list of resolutions?
The list maker makes a list because she feels like she is finally "coming home." She can do it alone or with others, but she has to call to the Guardians of the Watchtowers of the New Year first ... uh, after casting the circle, of course.