PaganSquare


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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Broom Lore for Walpurgisnacht and Other Holidays

Every year in late April, I thoroughly clean my back porch for the first time since the descent into winter. Over the winter and early spring, things tend to collect -- dust, dead bugs, spider webs, tree pollen from early spring. The latter (especially from the pines that surround my house) makes it futile to do this any earlier because all of my hard work -- sweeping, hosing it down, vacuuming, and mopping -- would be nulled a few days later by a thick film of yellow powder. But by mid-spring, everything seems to calm down enough to make the deep cleaning worthwhile, which ends up putting this ritual right before Walpurgisnacht and May Day, which I celebrate to honor my German and Scandinavian roots. I won't go into the history of Walpurgisnacht here because it's already covered on a wealth of websites and books; I'd rather focus on one household tool that has a significant place in the lore of this holiday (especially to me personally): the broom.

Brooms are often featured in many spring holidays. At Easter in Sweden and Finland, the festivities take on a more Halloween- or Carnivale-esque character than in other places, and little girls dress up as Easter witches, wearing kerchiefs on their heads and carrying small brooms in their hands. On Walpurgisnacht, a Wild Hunt of witches and specters rides across the night sky to hold their revels on the Brocken. It's common knowledge that the broom as a flying implement is a development of the magic worker's staff. For hundreds of years, it has served as a symbol of feminine power masked as a common, humble household tool.

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Journey to the Center of the Universe

It is the second moon of the year, 2017, the Budding Trees Moon, guided by red tail hawk and rose quartz crystal and I decide to journey to a special plateau that I had already discovered in 1996. In January of that year I happened upon a friends resort on the northern end of the Bonaparte Plateau, BC and now in 2017 I’m heading to the southern edge of this plateau. It was a cold January morning when I bundled up in my fox fur in 1996 and went out to a frozen over Fawn Lake with one of my spiritual retreat friends. As I called in the four directions, a sound came bounding over the plateau. The sound was a long drawn out Ooooommm. As I stood in awe I felt the vibration flowing over and through me. I excitedly turned to my friend and said, “Did you hear that?”

“Hear what?” She said. I had clairaudiently heard the OM, the Sound of Creation.

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
Celebrating Aging at Bealtaine

The maidenly May Queen. The fecundity of the land. The sacred union of masculine and feminine.  It seemed a bit counterintuitive that in Ireland, Bealtaine, the month of May, is a month celebrating creativity in people who are well over the age of 50. Beataine is the time of year when crones rock!

All over Ireland there are arts activities aimed at those who are of pensionable age. For instance, the Hawkswell Theatre in Sligo is offering weekly acting classes in May for €30! That is completely affordable for someone on a state pension. All over Ireland there are arts activities that celebrate our creativity as we age.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The Minnesota May Song

42º and a winter weather advisory. Must be May Eve in Minnesota.

 

The Minnesota May Song

 

The cuckoo comes in April,

she sings her song in May;

in June she changes tune,

in July she flies away.

 

For it is the First of May-O,

it is the First of May.

Remember, Minnesota:

it is the First of May.

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Recent comment in this post - Show all comments
  • Miles Gerhardson
    Miles Gerhardson says #
    I was born/raised in Minnesota......THIS little ditty....brought out an audible laugh while reading... Clever.....and sadly, SPOT

Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Join Us for Moon Meet this Summer!

The first Pagan festival for Atheopagans, nontheist Pagans, and naturalist Pagans is actually happening. It's called Moon Meet, and it will be August 4-6 of this year, on private land near Healdsburg in Sonoma County, California. The event is $90, which will include five meals.

For me, this is a dream.

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The Scene Is Never What It Used to Be: A Retrospect on Glamour and Steampunk

Can I make some old/femme/goth/steampunk/the-scene-is-never-what-it-used-to-be noises? Back in my day, a hundred years ago when I was the con head for SalonCon, Steampunk was still being defined. Like, to the point that I needed to make my assistant (The Baby) explain what exactly it was, many times. I was interested in Neo-Victoria for many reasons but I also became interested in The Past that Never Was (Steampunk) for many reasons coming from an intersectional feminist standpoint.  Mostly, we became involved in Steampunk because The Baby was interested in it and we couldn't afford to pay her and it was a reasonably easy way to compensate her for all her time and energy.  We wanted her to have a space to enjoy herself as a thank you for her hard work.

This was . . .ten years ago.

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
The Lover's Flame of Beltane

The air is warm and sweet. Life is budding all around and May flowers stretch across a field of freshly paint greenery, the faint scent of their perfume on gentle warm breeze. My heart beats rapidly in anticipation and I look out over sunlight space seeking your face. A stream of electrified energy moves up my spine awakening all of my senses as I feel the heat of your breath at the back of my neck. I turn to face you and two small suns flash with desire from the depths of eyes that have lovingly gazed upon my face in seasons past. Breath hangs in the air suspended in timelessness as I, the Maiden, reach out to you, my consort. Earth and Sun sigh into the release of consummate union and passion’s light burns with heat and intensity, as each lover’s flame becomes the singular flame that fuels the passion of Beltane. 

As the Wheel continues its cycle of light we turn our focus towards stimulating the dynamics of creation within. At the time of the Vernal Equinox we did the work of seeking balance and honoring the pause of that space strengthening an awareness illuminated by the potential that is held within the fertile space of manifest form. We found this space of balance within ourselves and opened in receipt of taking in more of the light continues to expand as it surrounds us outwardly. This opening to receiving the downpour of the light of growth was the preface to the union of the polarities at Beltane. 

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