Deep to on High: Traveling the Way of the River

A Wiccan priestess/UU minister transplanted from Central Pennsylvania to Portland, Oregon, helping those who seek intimacy with the One Who is Many—Male, Female, Both, and Neither—through ritual, seasonal observance, mythology, divination, and examination of current events.

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A Light Shines in the Darkness

I have been away for some time. And I have, unfortunately been away for a reason many of us know all too well:  Depression laid me low for several months from early spring all the way through the summer. I did not take the election of the current president of the US well, and my depression was, I believe, a manifestation of the agonies that many people went through at that time. 

I am pleased to report, however, that as the season darkens, my mood lightens, and that as I prepare for my annual winter solstice retreat, Going into the Dark, I delight in the grey and the rain and the lowering clouds of the Pacific Northwest. There is still the occasional visible sunrise or sunset, the first late and the second early, but mostly we are now in the rains of early winter. 

How do you celebrate the time between Samhain and winter solstice (Yule)? Do you keep the silence of some covens? Do you make a point of observing the shifting skies? Do you observe US Thanksgiving? And if you do, how do you do it?

Is there peace in this season for you, or are you caught up in the frenzy, the frenetic and frantic search for the perfect object, the perfect thing, the perfect stuff to give those you love?

I encourage you to seek peace and solace in this time of year. I encourage you to let the close and holy darkness touch you deeply. Move into quiet. Move into stillness. Move into contemplation. And perhaps then, as light returns, candle by candle, we will all find ourselves inspired anew for a year of hope.


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I am an initiated priestess in the tradition of Stone Circle Wicca, and began my Pagan studies in 1990. I have led rituals for thousands of people, in ceremonies as large as 400 in a Circle of Standing Stones under dozens of branching oaks and tulip poplars, and in rituals as small as a couple of folks in a living room. I am an affiliated UU minister with the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Atlanta, GA. I also provide spiritual direction—what I call spiritual accompaniment or sacred conversation—and have for over 15 years. Over that time, I have been with individual people of many faiths and none as they explored, encountered, and shared their relationships with the Divine. You are welcome to my spiritual accompaniment page for a fuller invitation.  


  • jennyhannb
    jennyhannb Monday, 29 January 2018

    Do you observe US Thanksgiving? And if you do, how do you do it? YES!
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  • Alvina
    Alvina Wednesday, 14 February 2018

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  • Acacia hary
    Acacia hary Thursday, 15 November 2018

    Good article, I appreciate your photos, beautiful night sky picture.
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  • Jesse P. Smith
    Jesse P. Smith Tuesday, 05 February 2019

    I was touched by your experience

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