If I could write for an empty room, a totally empty audience, I would be incredibly prolific.
PaganSquare is a community blog space where Pagans can discuss topics relevant to the life and spiritual practice of all Pagans.
This week we’ll be discussing Elestial crystals which is a crystal type that falls into the category of crystals' overall shape, such as Curved. This means we aren't counting edges of faces, looking at surface features or otherwise looking at PARTS of a crystal, but we are looking at the overall shape of the crystal.
Elestial crystals are described as crystals which "have natural terminations over the body and face of an etched and/or layered crystal". So, what does that mean? Simply, that they really aren't in the shape of a traditional point. They are layered all over with self-healed looking surfaces....
Spring! A relief from the winter cold, snow, and the introspective time of assessing where I am and what I need to do next. It’s about new beginnings and a fresh start. I’m sitting here laughing about this because here in Wisconsin we have four inches (more in some places) of snow on the ground. It is still snowing and they said it was supposed to stop by 8 this morning. We’re two hours past that.
Spring equinox is all about renewal, rebirth, coming alive again after the winter. The Persephone / Demeter story is one of the myths which is prominent for this time of year. Persephone returns to her mother and Demeter comes back to life with the return of her daughter....
I can remember my first theological debate. I was 7.
It was spring. My friend Mary Chris contended that Lent is called Lent because that's when you eat lentils. The Stepanoviches were Serbian Orthodox, and ate lots of lentils during Lent.
Clearly, there was a larger principle at stake here. To me, it seemed ridiculous that the larger thing should be named for the smaller. My automatic contrarian position was that lentils are named for Lent because that's when you eat them. (Not that anyone in my family ate lentils during—or even observed—Lent, mind you. But growing up in Pittsburgh, everyone knows what Lent is.)
Lent derives from the Old English word for “spring,” when the days lengthen. Had Harold won at Hastings, our four seasons today might be Winter, Lent, Summer, and Harvest.
Lentil is the diminutive of Latin lens, which meant “lentil.” (A lens, of course, is named for its lentil-like shape.) As we've been eating lentils for the last 12,000 years or so—since the end of the last Ice Age—it's not surprising that they should have their own name.
The words are unrelated. As in so many theological debates, it turns out that we were both wrong.
Friday March 20 marked several astrological events, all of which gave power to this year's Spring Equinox. Not only was it the Equinox, when day and night are balanced, marking the shift into a new season and an acceleration towards the light in this waxing year, it was also a SuperMoon and a Solar eclipse. While the eclipse was not visible in most of the Americas, the timing and power of these events were felt, subtly and not so subtly, throughout the world.
Although many Pagans mark the “new year” on Samhain or Yule, for many ancient cultures the New Year started in Spring. For while the work of the new year may be seeded or dreamed of in the dark of Winter, it is now that this new life becomes evident. Just as the baby rabbits born weeks ago are starting to come out and explore, just as the new buds that have been plumping up for weeks are starting to pop, maybe we are aware of something stirring inside ourselves....
The retrieval and revival of indigenous ceremonial traditions is a growing concern in this increasingly disconnected world, and one that has great promise for the restoration of methods of sustainable living, sound ecological practices and the preservation of ancient knowledge. Sound recordings of elders are being made around the world, as well as video recordings (where possible and appropriate) of aspects of traditional ritual. For some tribes, preservation and the training of the younger generation are key. For other native cultures, these efforts hinge around the retrieval of fragmentary and partially forgotten evidence. This is the situation with native Celtic ritual practices, some of which have died out, and others which survive in traditional Celtic-language speaking communities and which are not advertised or generally made public.
Every book, group and spiritual teacher who professes to practice 'ancient Celtic or Druidic ritual' has a completely different system on offer, which in and of itself is a red flag. The vast majority of these are based on modern occult and Neo-Pagan traditions, Neo-Shamanism of a non-Celtic provenance, and various New Age ideas, with a smattering of Celtic words or symbols. The reason for this is totally understandable: without living elders to pass along an intact tradition, or detailed written evidence that preserves such a system (provided by and approved by living descendants of native tradition bearers), there is enormous confusion and controversy over what Celtic ritual is or should be like....