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Song for a Cold Winter’s Night in the Belly of the Beast

I know.  It’s after Solstice.  The sun is returning blahblahblah.  That is only in theory in New Jersey at this point until April.  We still have many grey days with little sunlight to speak of to get through first.

A few weeks ago, April1 and I went to our favorite Korean Spa.  It’s near Mitsuwa which is an amazing Japanese market with ramen, taiyaki  and katsu stands that serve food on real plates like civilized people and the seating overlooks the NYC skyline.  We go to the spa, then go to Mitsuwa, eat too much and then wander the aisles to look for delicious treats to bring home.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

I’m going to my first public Pagan (or Wiccan) ritual, but I’ve never been to a ritual before. What should I wear? What should I bring? What should I expect in the ritual? What should I make sure to do (or not do) so I don’t accidentally insult someone or embarrass myself?

Public rituals are a good way to get your feet wet if you’re new to Wicca or Paganism. You can meet others who share your interests, and you can begin to learn about how rituals work and feel by participating in them. Public rituals usually feel a lot different from smaller, private ones, though, so if it’s possible, I recommend you try both kinds. I’ll cover private rituals in a later post.

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Pagan savings challenge, week fifty-two:  big finish!

I am proud to say that I have now officially saved $1,378 dollars, fulfilling my pledge as part of the Pagan savings challenge.  Yes, I am proud, and I am also amazed that I actually pulled it off!  The fact that it has become more difficult in recent weeks tells me I found the right savings point for my own situation.  Did you find yours?

One thing -- well, two in concert, really -- that will complicate my release of this pent-up energy (by spending it on a fireplace insert, readers may recall) are these darned small bills.  I opted for using the smallest bills possible because it makes a bigger visual impact for each weekly post about my savings journey, but no one is going to be thrilled with me plunking down over a thousand bucks in ones and twos to buy anything, legal tender or not.  Most people would bring them to the bank to change, but nope, can't do that!  These bills are all marked and entered in the Where's George? site, which means that depositing them in the bank is a no-no.

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It's kind of neat when you read things that matter to you and you know all the people involved. This wonderful article about a commitment to environmentalism and one of the most important such issues that affects my country at the moment was written by my friend Dodie, about my friends Sparrow and MoJo, who are the hosts of the Wigglian Way podcast. THIS is what Pagan leadership should look like. Bless you, Sparrow and MoJo, for your wonderful work; and bless you, Dodie, for telling the world about it.

Earth Warriors Vs. Kinder Morgan

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Cowan Yule

The single best defense against Christmas is a good Yule.

I sometimes worry that I live too much in the pagan ghetto. Most of my friends are pagan; I live in a pagan home, immersed from day to day and from season to season in pagan culture. I know that there's a wide world of non-pagans out there. But after all these years, I also know who my people are, where my home is, and what my work is.

Midwinter's Eve our job is to bring the Sun up out of the Dark. We sing the Sun down, we light the fire; we dance, we sing, we keep the fire-watch through all the long night. 7:47 a. m. Midwinter's Day will find us out on the east pedestrian walkway of the Washington Avenue bridge, singing the Sun up out of the Mississippi Valley. December is on average the cloudiest month of our Minnesota year, when Earth and Sun hide themselves in their mysteries. But in those years when we actually see the Sun rise out of the river valley, with light and color streaming back into the world, well...that's Yule in little, and the joy of it continues for a full thirtnight of days, a year in miniature. Because we are who we are, we're part of something much larger than ourselves, something that would happen whether we were here to see it or not. It's something that we're privileged to take part in, and so long as we continue to do so, our people will continue to be. It's a joyous responsibility.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The Magic of Christmas

In the weeks leading up to December 24, my 8-year-old kept asking the same question. She asked it in as many different ways as she could, trying to tease out the information she was convinced I was withholding. She asked it after her choir's holiday concert, she asked it when she and her sister came shopping with me for gifts. She asked it as we made cookies, as we planned menus, even as we drove up to Boulder for a children's Solstice celebration. However she put it, the question remained the same:

“Mom, is Santa Claus real?”

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Posted by on in Studies Blogs

Question: why are we as Pagans still worshipping fertility at a time of overpopulation and global warming? 

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Jön Upsal's Gardener
    Jön Upsal's Gardener says #
    I daresay your question is too glib, and needs more careful examination of its underlying assumptions. The first is that there is
  • Sable Aradia
    Sable Aradia says #
    I think only BTW (and descended) Wiccans are actually worshipping fertility in the way that you mean these days (which is hardly "
  • Erin Lale
    Erin Lale says #
    It is my understanding that the type of fertility we celebrate when we honor fertility gods like Freyr basically means "nature sta
  • Diotima
    Diotima says #
    I honor fertility because the fertility of animals gives us food, as does the fertility of plants -- in fact, the vast majority of

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