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Book Review:  The Akashic Records by Ernesto Ortiz

Published by New Page Books, 2015

The Akashic Records: Sacred Exploration of Your Soul's Journey Within the Wisdom of the Collective Consciousness, by Ernesto Ortiz

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Is Vat-Grown 'Meat' Vegetarian?

We're not there yet, but I keep hearing that within a decade or so, the food conglomerates will be selling lab-grown “meat” that feels, smells, and tastes like “real” meat, but does not involve the slaughter of living animals.

So let me ask: is “meat” raised under such conditions “vegetarian”?

Semantics, semantics. How do you define “vegetarian”? The traditional diet of the Masai consists largely of dairy products and blood drawn from living cattle. For years I've argued that, technically, such a diet is indeed vegetarian. After all, no animals were killed to produce it.

For me, vat-grown “meat” raises serious ethical and religious issues. As a pagan, I feel that it behooves us to eat in as sacred a way as possible. At the heart of sanctity lies relationship. If you raise a steer to slaughter it for food, there's at least some kind of personal relationship there.

(That's why I feel that it's every practicing omnivore's obligation to participate—at least from time to time—in the killing and butchering of the animals that they eat. That's why I'm that paradoxical pagan animal, the pro-sacrifice vegetarian.)

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    I try to say "Goddess, God and Great Spirit thank you and blessings on all the plants and animals that gave their lives to make th
  • Murphy Pizza
    Murphy Pizza says #
    Yeah, as another longtime vegetarian, I'm with you on this one. The lab grown meat thing is a response to folks who know that a me

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The Magic of Evergreens

While many plants have faded or died, evergreens live up to their name and this is their time of year to shine. With sacred trees, mistletoe, and other plants taken into the home, it is no accident that this is such a magical time of year. When working with evergreen trees, it’s important to use branches, cones, and needles from the right tree, so you need to know the difference between a pine and a fir and a spruce. But don’t worry, you don’t have to be a botanist to tell them apart; the cones and needles give us clues.

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Allow for Transition: Aries Moon Vibes Dec. 15-18

Mama Moon enters the pioneering, soldier-on sign of Aries on Dec. 15 at 4:44 pm pacific time until Dec. 18.

As we begin our march toward the big transition time-of-year, either the longest, darkest day (in the northern hemisphere) or the the shortest, brightest day (southern hemisphere), so too does our very being begin to prepare on a Moon-Level ie. on an emotional, comfort level.

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs

“Beginnings and endings are so very sacred, to give honor to all that has transpired, every experience, every joy, every pain, is a doorway to the magical. Hold your entire year between your hands, every day, every thought, every breath. Now bless it with gratitude, love and humility. You have done more to transform this new year than a thousand resolutions.” 

 –K. Allen Kay

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A Winter Solstice Mystery: Beauty in the Belly of the Dark

As the wheel of the year turns to the Winter Solstice, Nature settles ever deeper into Her cloak of darkness and repose. At the opposite end of the scale, our Western culture marks the holiday season in a flurry of shopping, social obligations and overconsumption — a busy end to a busy year in an outward-focused, ever-doing, hungry-for-more world.

Nature remembers what we humans have forgotten:
every cycle must return to stillness, silence, the dark;
every out-breath requires an in-breath;
every outer endeavor turns back inward to its origins and begins again;
from death comes new life; from the darkest night, the new dawn is born.

Beauty sleeps in the belly of the dark, be it the seeds of the green growth of Spring, the powers and mysteries of the unknown, and our own dormant gifts and potential. Yet the dark has a gatekeeper; our pain, losses and the denied, repressed parts of our life story and humanity also await us in the belly of the dark. We cannot reclaim our beauty without also embracing and healing our wounding; both dwell within the shadowed folds of our inner world, side by side, a mirror of the other, each with gifts and blessings to share.

The part of you that holds your wounding is not your nemesis; it is the truth keeper of how you were hurt, what was taken from you and the choices you made in order to survive and even thrive in the face of adversity. It has stood guard and shielded your tender, beautiful, true Self, waiting for the ripe moment of your healing and blossoming.

If you are one of the fortunate ones, with few bumps and bruises in your life story, still the darkness has gifts lying in wait for you. Because the sacred dark is the truth keeper of the profound potential and mysteries of our authentic, whole/holy humanity that have been denied and repressed in our collective culture.

Open to the ways of Nature at this turning into the Winter Solstice. Heed the call arising from the belly of the dark that invites you to stillness, silence, and opens portals to your inner darkness. Let go of the frenetic activity of the season; follow your breath inward and return to your center in search of the fragments of your life story and true Self ready to return to the light.

So without, so within; as the new dawn is born of the darkest nights, so too can your beauty blossom from the depth of your wounding, and your whole/holy humanity shine forth into the returning light of a newborn day.

Photo Credit: Aaron Burden on Unsplash

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Winter Fires: A Solstice Story in Two Parts

Part One

Lily pulled on her warmest coat and snow boots, ready for an adventure outside. Snow had been falling for several hours and she loved the quiet that descended when the ground was blanketed in fluffy white snow. Even the coziness and warmth of her cottage could not entice her to stay inside and miss the chance of walking at sunset through the woods that bordered her home.

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