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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in Sun worship

Posted by on in Culture Blogs

 Why are earliest sunrises a week or more before summer solstice? | Fox  Weather

 Paganicon 2024



(7:15 a.m.; sunrise 7:25)

People gather outside Ballroom A (Scandinavian Ballroom).

Welcome (priest)


Horns blow


People proceed outdoors, led by:


Libation bearers



People assemble, facing East.



As the first limb of the Sun touches the horizon, horns blow.

People pray, pour libations.

As the Sun clears the horizon, horns blow again.


Song: Turn to the East (all)


Lift thine eyes, behold the light:

turn to the East, where dawns the day.

Hope and love, forever bright,

guide and protect us on our way.


Hail the Sun's rays, shining bright

after Winter's long, dark night.

Lift up thy voice, with praises ringing;

turn to the East, where dawns the day.


Blessing and Dismissal



(Turns to face people)

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs


In the dream, I am being shown the amber robe of the Sun. Even untenanted, spread out on the ground, it is an awesome sight.

The golden omofor is covered—feathered, enscaled—with huge, smooth pieces of amber: pieces as large as my palm, the largest the size of my outstretched hand. I hadn't realized that natural amber occurred in such large pieces. The effect of so many together overwhelms me.

I stand unmoving in awestruck wonder. On the body of its wearer, radiant with Sunlight, the lordly robe, so masterfully wrought, would blind the eye.

I bow to the ground and kiss the largest of the amber disks, the one covering the wearer's heart.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs



Have you spoken with the Sun lately?

Have you said “thanks” recently for his goodly (and godly) gift of light? Of warmth? Have you thanked him for your very life?

If not, why not? Are you in the habit of taking gifts for granted?

(Of course, one might just as readily say “her” here; the Sun is a star and, as such, an ungendered being; or maybe “pangendered” would be better. But we, as humans, gendered beings ourselves, are—as ever—wont to project. He or she is not the point here; you is the point.)

Me, I speak to the Sun every day, individual to individual: when I can, at least. (Alas, it looks as if today, I may not get the opportunity. Historically, December is Minnesota's cloudiest month.) When first I see the Sun in the morning, I kiss my hand and greet him. I thank him; I tell him that I love him. (“Love to you, my Pahh.” ) When he nears the western horizon, I bid good-night, farewell, See you in the morning, kissing again my hand.

(Similarly, I also daily greet the Winds, the Moon, the River...the pagan's day—and life—is filled with gods.)

Does he hear me when I do this? No, probably not. But that obviates neither the relationship, nor the responsibly. The Sun burns in self-sacrificial love; this is his nature. We say “thank you” and “I love you”: this is ours.

What are we, we living beings? Are we not minerals and energy, minerals-in-motion? One from the Sun, the other from Earth. Truly, in the most literal way possible, we are sunlight and soil, children of Earth and Sun.

In us, they see, and think, and understand. In us, they know love and thanks. This is our “why.” Is this not a wonder?

Humans, we speak in words, and dance. Gods speak in what they do, and are.

Soon comes the Yule of the year. Now, we speak to the Sun on our own recognizance, one on one.

Then, we will do so together.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    You're more than welcome, John, and my respectful obeisances at the shrine of Surya, in all its varied richness. Re. off topic: M
  • John Zelasko
    John Zelasko says #
    Hello Steven, and deep thanks for the many posts you've written that I have valued but never commented on. This is my first post,

Posted by on in Culture Blogs


Our story so far:

Since the 17th century (at least) the rising of the Sun on Yule Morning has been greeted in Shetland with the plaintive and darkly beautiful fiddle tune The Day Dawn. For four hundred years (at least), the tune had words no more than the birdsong which greets the same dawn.

Then, a few years back, Jane Hazelden wrote lyrics for The Day Dawn. They're good, maybe even very good: as good a nutshell definition of Yule as any that ever I've heard and, indeed, better than most.

But they don't quite fit the tune.

To fit her new words to the old fiddle tune, Hazelden has truncated some of the musical phrasing, notably certain repetitions and, in so doing—to my ear, at least—thereby diminished something of the tune's integrity, and dulled something of its luminosity.

(Forgive me, giver, if I destroy the gift, the Goddess once, through Laura Riding, told Robert Graves: It is so nearly what I want, I cannot help but perfect it.)

So I've tweaked Hazelden's lyrics to fit the original tune by matching verbal repetitions to the musical ones.

Well, you be the judge. Maybe you're a fiddler and don't need words at all to sing the Sun his Old Song.

But out on the bridge, singing the Sun up out of the Mississippi valley on Solstice morning, these are the words that I'll be singing myself.

So join me if you will.


The Day Dawn

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Savoring the Summer Solstice

Summer is nearly officially here and all around us, the flowers, trees, birds, fireflies, and elements are bursting with life. If you stop and close your eyes, you can practically feel it pulsating. This is the time to savor all these sensual pleasures in abundance and revel in all that nature's bounty has to offer! Since the Solstice falls on Father's Day this year, you may choose to combine your festivities. However you celebrate the Solstice, being outside as much as possible seems to be the order of the day.

A Magickal Market

Speaking of being outside, were you aware that Houston boasts a magical, witchy outdoor marketplace? They do! The Thorn & Moon Magickal Market, headed by Jessica Anderson, runs the first Saturday of every month downtown at the White Oak Music Hall and Raven Tower from 6 - 11 p.m. Jessica is this month's "Women Who Howl at the Moon" podcast guest, so be sure to tune in and hear her describe all the sights and sounds in glorious detail. Everything from themed vendors to Goth Yoga is available for you to try. They often wrap up with some apropos entertainment, such as the Bewitched Burlesque troupe performing a show. Amanda Marie Parker from Bewitched Burlesque was our April podcast guest.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

 Siberian Squill: Blue Harbingers of Spring | Horticulture and Home Pest News


I'm walking past the neighborhood Scandinavian store—I live in Minneapolis, I can say that—when I stop dead in my tracks and my mouth falls open in disbelief.

The front window is filled with Midsummer stuff.

It's the 5th of April, the Equinox barely a fortnight gone. With Beltane nearly a moon away, already they're on to the Solstice?

Gods. If ever you've wondered what life in Pagandom-to-come will look like, welcome to the future.

Here in the North, we're all instinctive Sun-worshipers, and I mean that literally, not in the sneering way that the term is usually used in the secular press. We know where life comes from, and Midwinter and Midsummer are the twin hinges of our year.

Still, all things in their time. I'm all for sympathetic magic but, when it comes to Turning the Wheel, these things must be done delicately, or you hurt the spell.

Spring has come early to Minneapolis this year. We had our first 80 degree day Monday; the greening lawns are smokey-blue with "Siberian" squills. After the Winter at the end of the Year that Lasted for Three, people are out enjoying the warmth and the freedom.

Still, there's tension beneath the surface. Less than a year since the unrest and burnings that followed George Floyd's death at the hands of then-policeman Derek Chauvin, the trial has been an exercise in collective re-traumatization. Everyone hopes for a good outcome; everyone fears what a bad one could mean. Just coming 'round to the anniversary has been emotionally difficult.

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On a whim the other day, I did an image search for “Yule ornaments.” What I found dismayed me.

Or rather, what I didn't find dismayed me.

Pentagrams, runes, Thor's hammers, witches on brooms: pagan schmuckerei for pretty much every taste and tradition.

Out of the first two screens, maybe 150 images in all, I found one Sun.


For a moment, I felt a sense of vertigo, as if I were falling: a giddy kind of kinship with the “Keep Christ in Christmas” folks.

Solstice is relationship: Earth, Sun, Us.

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