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SageWoman Blogs

At SageWoman magazine, we believe that you are the Goddess, and we're devoted to celebrating your journey. We invite you to subscribe today and join our circle...

Here in the SageWoman section of PaganSquare, our bloggers represent the multi-faceted expressions of the Goddess, feminist, and women's spirituality movements.

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Twists and Turns

Long time, no write. Although I do have three drafts started on the Word app on my tablet, my son had commandeered my tablet after his high school graduation and I had only been lucky enough to touch it two brief times since then.  

Now that I'm on a training trip away from my family, I find that I have pockets of free time.  And, bonus, I have my laptop back!  Had to use it when I worked from home for a large retail company.  But now that I'm in training for another work-at-home job (much better than the previous one), I get to have it back.  At some point I will grab my tablet and transfer the drafted blogs and post them.  So I was getting ready to leave my training day thinking that all I wanted to do was sit and decompress and write when I received a lovely "missing you" email, gently reminding me that I have a warm place to write - exactly what was on my brain.  Someone was reading my thoughts.

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Feeling Eclipsed?

The August 2017 eclipse season is upon us. Astrologer's view eclipses as doors closing (sometimes with a slam) and new windows of opportunity. During a solar and lunar eclipse season we encounter a period of shadow. Something is hidden. Then something is revealed. Weather can turn capricious. This summer I have had a sense of waiting for the other shoe to drop. Well, this  month I suspect we will hear multiple thumps on the ground of our being. 

Which may fill you with fear. And I say, in the Northern Irish vernacular, "Catch yerself on!" Which is a less elegant, but more bracing, way of rephrasing Hemingway's "Courage is grace under pressure."

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Tasha Halpert
    Tasha Halpert says #
    Thanks for this lovely, cogent piece on the phenomenon known as the eclipse. I always find them fascinating and this one will be e
  • Bee Smith
    Bee Smith says #
    If you live within the pathway of even partial visibility it will feel all the more potent still!
  • Tasha Halpert
    Tasha Halpert says #
    I do, in central MA.
  • Anne Newkirk Niven
    Anne Newkirk Niven says #
    We are going Eclipse crazy over here!
  • Bee Smith
    Bee Smith says #
    I rather gathered that. And they are particularly poten when they are visible from your location. I know that from personal experi

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The Face You Give Yourself

          My first husband was in the ROTC in college. After his graduation we went to El Paso to live while he attended officers’ school. My little girl took her first steps there. We lived in a small housing complex with other young families. I became friend with another of the mothers in her twenties. She was from Oklahoma. One of the first things I noticed about her was that living in that hot, dry climate had scored deep frown and squint wrinkles in her youthful skin. Seeing them I determined right then that if I was going to have wrinkles at least they would be pleasant ones, and so I trained myself to notice whenever I started to squint or frown. Then as I caught myself, I would stop.

Some research on the Internet revealed that it takes more muscles for a genuine smile than it does for a frown. Furthermore, the act of smiling exercises the facial muscles and brings more blood to nourish the cells of the face. This I turn helps make us look younger and prettier.  More important, so far as I m concerned is that the act of smiling releases endorphins in the brain. These are feel good hormones that makes us feel happier. So as we do so, we smile more and so forth. This is called a positive feedback loop.

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This morning, I intuitively chose a talisman to wear, without knowing why it was the right one for the day ahead. A while back, I’d made the talisman out of Angora fibers (otherwise known as rabbit fur), Cormo, which is one of the softest wools in existence, some other fibers, and two glass beads. (In case it's hard to see in the photo: the three center beads are ones I made out of fibers, and on each side of them is a glass bead. If memory serves, I spun the cord entirely out of bunny fur.)

 

Later today, while on my physical therapy walk through the woods, I meditated on what the talisman had for me today. The first thing that came to me was the gentleness of rabbits. 

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Elder and harebell

Lammas, Lugnasadh, the celebration of the grain harvest is a few days behind us. However, not all plant life corresponds with the grain, there are many things out there in the UK at different points in their life cycles right now so I thought I’d talk about those to offer some alternative takes on the wheel of the year for this month.

Lammas rituals often encourage us to focus on personal harvests and bounty, but there’s nothing in nature that says it is natural to be at the harvest stage at specifically this point in the year. If your life is not aligning you to the grain harvest, look around to see what you do connect with.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Nimue Brown
    Nimue Brown says #
    watermelons are a bit of an expensive treat here, I am imagining what an abundance would be like... :-)
  • Laura Perry
    Laura Perry says #
    Watermelon is one of the few garden crops that I don't get tired of, even when everyone has too many and is giving them away. Othe
  • Laura Perry
    Laura Perry says #
    I live in the American South, and we've always done our own twist on Lammas. Early August is indeed harvest season here, but not f

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Grainne, Sun Goddess/Winter Queen

In the ancient Celtic world the Goddess was the One who expressed Herself through the many. Grainne is such a one. She is a Solar Goddess, welcoming the rebirth of spring and the fullness of summer and the Winter Queen/Dark Goddess, nurturing seeds through winter. She is Aine’s sister or another aspect of Aine. She, like Aine, was honored at the summer solstice and the first grain harvest of early August with bonfires and torchlit processions on top of her sacred hill at Leinster, Ireland. Remnants of these festivals are still found in folk ritual today. 

Grainne is a part of the triple goddess formed by Herself and Her two sisters, Fenne and Aine. Both Grainne and Aine were beautiful, golden-haired goddesses who visited their fields and hilltops to protect and nurture the land, people and animals.

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What is your Lammas Harvest?

It is traditional to bake a Lammas loaf at this time of year, although many may wait to celebrate next weekend, closer to the cross-quarter day.  But there are harvests and harvests. Lammas or Lunasa as we have it in Ireland, is the time when there is a pause in the silage making and hay cutting. There are plenty of festivals around the country and in yesteryear this would be the time for fairs and all that they include - drinking, fighting, wooing, some horse trading.

From Ballycastle's Auld Lammas Fair up in Country Antrim where you can get your dulse and yellow man (a really hard candle that might extract your fillings) down to County Kerry where they crown the goat at Puck Fair, this was the pause for revelry. Many gatherings happened at holy wells and there are numerous accounts of priests having to ban nude bathing of both sexes (together, imagine!) at these sacred sites rededicated to the Virgin Mary.  There were 'faction fights' - supposedly playful, but often they got ugly. My local holy well was contaminated by blood spilt in it at a Lunasa fairy. (All is well; it has been renovated, re-dedicated and the local priest lifted the curse on it back in August 2014.)

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Recent comment in this post - Show all comments
  • Tasha Halpert
    Tasha Halpert says #
    Here is my Harvest Poem, in answer to our question. Blessed Be, Tasha My Harvest My harvest is not from a field or meadow It is n

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