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PaganSquare is a community blog space where Pagans can discuss topics relevant to the life and spiritual practice of all Pagans.

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What Do You Call Fellow Coven-Members?

What do you call fellow members of your coven?

In the absence of a universally-accepted term, a number of usages have sprung up across contemporary Witchdom.

Coveners: Coven as something you do. Personally, I find this term inelegant, since generally -er is a suffix attached to verbs, not nouns. I don't like the phrase “to coven together” either,* but—in the long run—use determines correctness, so maybe I'm just being a dinosaur here.

Coven-mates: Coven as a place, or as a group of friends. This is the term that they use in our sister-coven. I'm not sure whether this is mate as in “pal,” or as in “room-mate.” I don't usually think of a coven as a place, but I guess I'm good with it either way.

Coven-sisters/Coven-brothers: Coven as family. These are the oldest and most traditional terms, and anyone who has ever been part of a functional coven will readily understand the metaphor. The disadvantage of these two, of course, is that they're gender-specific, which in a mixed group can get awkward.

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  • Greybeard
    Greybeard says #
    I have always said "coveners." Depending on context it may be "coven members." One of our traditional rituals talks about "br

Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
The season of second chances

We tend to think of nesting birds and cute fledglings as a spring thing. In practice, right now many birds are raising second clutches as we move into the summer. Some will raise three, even. This is the season of second chances.

The survival rate for cute, fluffy chicks isn’t great. A momma duck can start out with a dozen tiny bundles of fluff and be lucky to raise one viable duck to adulthood. The problem for chicks is that they are mouthfuls of protein with no scope to defend themselves or escape. They come into the world at just the point in the year when everything predatory is looking for neat bundles of protein to post into the mouths of their own cute and hungry young things.

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Encountering the Nature Spirits

One of the basic tenets of Druidry, and perhaps one of the ones that unites virtually all modern forms, is a reverence and respect for nature. This is reflected in the original meaning of the word ‘Druid’, which comes from the Gaelic drui, which has ties to the proto-Celtic word for Oak, dru. The Roman historian Pliny the Elder wrote in the First Century AD that the Gaulish druids worshipped and performed sacrifices outdoors in sacred places in nature, most notably in oak groves.

 While modern Druidic traditions cannot claim an unbroken lineage to these times, most if not all modern Druids would likely agree that honoring nature forms a central part of their beliefs and practices. In fact, the most common stereotype someone might have of a modern-day Druid would likely be that of a robe-clad tree-hugger. Robes aside, there may be a kernel of truth in this for many practicing Druids, who would largely agree that they do worship nature to at least some degree.

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The Sun Broom--A Midsummer Ritual and Tool

The Sun broom is both a Midsummer ritual and a tool you can use ritually around the year.

You will need:

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
On the Monday After Samhain

As the army of Queen Medb sets out on its ill-starred cattle-raid into Ulster, they encounter a fantastic figure coming toward them.

The young woman is armed. Her chariot is drawn by two black horses.

She wears a dappled cloak with a gold pin, a hooded tunic with red embroidery, and golden shoes.

She carries a weaver's beam of white bronze, inlaid with gold.

Her golden hair is done up in three braids: two wound in a crown around her head, the third hanging down her back to her calf.

Her black eyelashes cast a shadow halfway down her cheek.

Her eyes have triple irises.

“Who are you?” asks Mebd.

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The Summer Solstice: Lore and Tradition
This is the second time in the year when the sun appears to "stand still" on its journey across the horizon upon rising and setting. Here, the sun rises at its furthest north-easterly point, and sets in its most north-westerly. It reaches its highest nadir in the sky, and here in the UK that means that the days are exceptionally long, and we may not even see full darkness before the light of dawn begins to permeate the skies. This phenomenon of the sun rising and setting in the same place lasts for three days, just as at the winter solstice. The Summer Solstice is known as Alban Hefin (Welsh) meaning "the light of summer", Medios-saminos (Old Celtic) and Meitheamh (Irish), both meaning "midsummer". Welsh tradition places the summer solstice as one of "three spirit-nights" or tair ysbrydnos, times when the veils between the world were thin, the others being Calan Mai and Calan Gaeaf(Beltane and Samhain). This is the longest day, before we begin our descent back into the darkness of the coming winter. It is considered the peak of the power of light, yet a reminder that everything changes.

Our Neolithic ancestors built monuments to track the sunrise and sunset of the winter solstice, and equally each monument would also work in reverse six months later for the summer solstice. Many monuments, such as the Callanish stone circle, also include the equinoxes, and so act as a giant calendar, marking out the time and the season. Four rows or avenues of ancient processional stones meet in the circle at a central stone, much like a Celtic cross. Stonehenge's processional way from the River Avon was marked by the sun's path during the solstices, and the Ring of Brodgar on Orkey is also aligned to the solstices and equinoxes.

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Slavic Pagan Holidays 2018 part 3: Summer

These holidays are drawn from various Slavic traditions and nations. They are converted to the Gregorian calendar. 

July

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