PaganSquare is a community blog space where Pagans can discuss topics relevant to the life and spiritual practice of all Pagans.
Specific paths such as Heathenism, blended traditions, polytheist reconstructionism, etc.
On Friday April 18, 2014, there was a barbecue at the Bundy Ranch. I was being pressured to go by my political friends who had been my campaign volunteers when I ran for office the previous year. The woman who had been my campaign manager called me and asked me to come out and lead everyone in singing Bring It Down, the Leslie Fish anarchist ballad, which we had sung at a New Years' Even party after the end of my campaign.
I knew a Witch for a time who frequently said to me, "No one just gives you High Priestess status in my Tradition. That's something you have to earn." I try not to take stupid sayings personally, but after the third or so time she said it, I realized she was probably talking about me.
First of all, screw her....
A darkened chapel. A leather-clad villain holds his victim by the throat, ready to slit her open. Another man creeps closer, gaze steady, voice intent, trying to talk him out of it. Finally the rescuer urges:
“You can choose to hide in your nightmares. Or you can choose to wake up.”
The screen flickers as I pause the recording. I know I will rewind and re-watch. For the rescuer’s words came as if addressed to me.
Not that I’m intent on murder. But I am familiar with nightmare.
These days when we consult an architect to create a new building, we generally orient it with the front toward the street that will access the building, for convenience and practicality. But in much of the ancient world, each new building was carefully oriented toward one or more cardinal directions or astronomical alignments. Ancient Crete was no different. The temple complexes at Knossos, Phaistos, Zakros, and other Minoan cities and towns were built to align to a variety of related astronomical events.
For the most part, the celestial events the Minoan buildings align to are risings of various sorts: sunrise, moonrise, the rising of the planet Venus, and the heliacal rising of certain stars. These astronomical events held a special place in Minoan religion, marking sacred times of the year, and also helped to maintain the Minoans’ complicated lunisolar calendar....
This has been a strange year for me; a lot of things have shifted, and a lot of things have fallen into place. In May, I was finally able to leave my day job and become a full-time businesswoman. At the same time as this was going on, I had to cope with the sudden terminal illness of my ten-year-old cat, Grim Greyling. This event has colored much of the rest of my year, because when he passed into spirit he became such a palpable, immediate presence in our household that I had to recalibrate my ability to perceive and interact with my god-husband, Odin. Yes, having Grim around has made it harder for me to maintain awareness of having my husband around, and I've had to rebuild those muscles almost from the ground up. It hasn't been easy, though the process been helped by the firm knowledge that Odin hasn't gone anywhere, and that at the end of the this process He will be more solidly present than ever before. And I wouldn't trade having Grim around for making this easier on me—because no one ever said these relationships were supposed to be easy, anyhow.
Last week I traveled up to Northern California for work. On the day of my early meeting--8:30 a.m.!--I woke up in my hotel room at 6 and saw a pitch-black sky.
It wasn't a huge surprise (although I'd come from the south, where the nights were still a bit shorter). As I showered and got ready, though, and the clock ticked from 6:30 to 7 to 7:30 and the sky remained black, I had one of those random, strange thoughts that sometimes pop into your head. I thought, what if the sun just doesn't rise today?...