Feeling Imbolc early…

Imbolc is, for me, about beginings and new things and creativity… I will be going on about that later though… today I want to write of Change and Hope and connecting them once more to my own government… I want to write of feeling an actual sense of pride and ownership in my nations governement…

I believe, again!  I believe that my nation can live up to its highest ideals as outlined in the U.S. Constitution!  I was up late last night, and shortly after midnight a line of rainstorms and wind blew through West Central Florida… it was difficult not to read some symbolism into that… the Winds of Change, the Cool Cleansing and Healing Waters…

A few short months ago my beloved partner and I spoke, seriously, about the idea of emigrating to another country should McCain / Palin won the Whitehouse.  I know that sounds rather dramatic, but it is the simple unvarnished truth… I would not have felt safe as a citizen, as a Pagan, as a gay man, or as a Democat in a McCain/Palin United States.

Then Obama won.

Today we made it official.

A peaceful and democratic transfer of power… it’s a phrase that’s fallen from a lot of lips today, but it’s an important one because it is not as common a thing in this world as we could hope for.

We have a new administration… with a new attitude about openness and transparency and Citizen participation; this will require the best of us.

I am encouraged by what I find at the new White House Website

I am encourages that as his first official proclomation President Obama has called for today to be a National Day of Renewal and Reconciliation.

Join me in pouring Libations of thanks to Liberty and Columbia and Uncle Sam, Join me in lighting incense to the guiding and guarding spirits of our President and his Cabinet and all of those who now start the difficult role of Public Service.

Tis the season…

WHAT: A Bloggers (Silent) Poetry Reading
WHEN: Anytime February 2, 2009
WHERE: Your blog
WHY: To celebrate the Feast of Brigid, aka Groundhog Day
HOW: Select a poem you like – by a favorite poet or one of your own – to post February 2nd.

RSVP: If you plan to publish, feel free to leave a comment and link on this post. Last year when the call went out there was more poetry in cyberspace than I could keep track of. So, link to whoever you hear about this from and a mighty web of poetry will be spun.

An annual Tradition for the last 4 years, this is a delightful way to welcome the Imbolctide Season for those of us that celebrate that particular festival!

You can also connect up with this fabulous event through MetaPagan!

Remembering and learning and looking forward

So I have poured my libation in memory and honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, and the many others known and unkown to me who have worked and struggled to help my country struggle towards its more perfect union.

No lights, no spectral visitation, some rather well timed wind gusts but they could have been entirely concidental on a breezy Florida night.

I don’t know that I needed any spectral evidence… I feel humbled to look back at the various civil rights struggles my nation has moved through in its 200 plus years.  I find myself looking forward to the Innaguration and the moving forward into a new hopeful era.

I find myself realizing I have much to learn about the Civil Rights pioneers from the Sufferagettes and Abolitionists to the Civil Rights leaders of the 1960’s, to the Queer pioneers who helped fight for ~ and continue to fight for ~ equality.

I will be spending the day tomorrow on projects and housework and keeping an eye on the innaugural coverage.

Peace, and Blessed Be!


Pray for a sick kitten…

tigger-at-restWell, Tiger is a cat really.  But as I am finding out, they are always your little kitten when you’ve raised them…. if this is one/one millionth of what a parent feels I am SO never, never going to give my father grief the next time he asks me if I have an umbrella and a coat cause he saw a news report of rain in Florida!

We took Tiger in to the Veterinarian yesterday, he’s been sick… he got some anti-inflammatories and antibiotics… today they called and his blood test indicated he was severely dehydrated… so he’s at the Vet’s this weekend… we are waiting on the results of the F.I.V. and Feline Leukemia tests… (standard ones…just in case) and hoping that his liver function is all-right..

Mother Celestial and Father Divine,

Health, Wealth, and Happiness,

For me and for mine!

Blessed Be, So Mote It Be!

Cross Roads Moments

I suppose it is not entirely unexpected that someone who has chosen to make a place in his heart and life for Hecate should be drawn to the metaphor and myth and imagery and power of the cross-roads.  Thoughts of them have been hovering at the back of my mind the last few days.

There are a couple of very different sources or goads or inspirations for this recent obsession, other of course than having been blessed with A.D.D. and occasionally getting stuck on an idea like a bird-dog on a scent.

One came from Dana of the Bells from Crying of a Siren, her quick note which linked to an a couple of articles ( 1st one here and 2nd one here) about a new reporters sociological experiment.

Briefly the reporter had it arranged that Joshua Bell one of the greatest living violinists of our day would be wearing some scruffy clothes,  playing some of the greatest pieces of classical music (on a Stadivarius no less!), at the top of the stairs at a busy Washington DC subway terminal and would film whatever the results were…  hardly anyone walking by noticed or acknowledged him!

The other, much sadder, goad or inspiration for this post comes from Kerr Cuhulain’s blog.

Briefly, over a dozen people encounter a boy wandering the streets in mixed snow and rain, barefoot and wearing some flannel pajamas asking passersby for help as his parents are fighting.  Not.  One.  Of.  Them.  Helped. Him!

The police were not able to track him down.


This has me doing some thinking about those moments in life where we have a chance to make a choice, how those choices define us or change us.  I believe, as a Witch, that we are responsible for our choices; our actions, our reactions, our responsibility.

I’d like to think the the nearly 20 years I have been a Pagan and Witch that I have learned, that I have grown in maturity and in spirit; that is sort of the idea of Witchcraft… at least as I see it.

I find myself looking at the Sunlit Cross-roads of the Joshua Bell experiment and remembering a time on my student tour of Europe where I was walking up the stairs of the London Metro and found myself listening to a guitarist…  the strange and wonderful accoustics of the subway station stairs and eventually comming upon him.  An alien experience in a foriegn city to a young, young man from Anchorage, Alaska.


I find myself thinking of a time when I was in my early teens and I was downtown doing some Christmas shopping… it was a snowy day so the temperature wouldn’t have been too cold… somewhere in the 30’s maybe.  A panhandler approached me for money, I told him I had none even though I did.

I was young and had been warned by my parents to just say no to panhandlers and to never take my wallet out…

Yet even then I looked back on it even minutes later thinking about the Fast Food restaurant we were near… I could have taken him in and bought him a meal…

Of course I also look at that particular cross-roads with the eyes of someone who has since worked as a convenience store clerk and watched panhandlers get together money from customers and then come in later and by beer or cigarettes with the money…  I am somewhat cynical when approached nowadays.

But I could have bought him a burger…


Then there is the brightly lit Midnight sunlit cross-roads of walking home from my job at a big-box book store and being startled by an old woman.  She was in a clean bright floral print bathrobe/nightgown type of thing and looked a little confused wandering her neighborhood at an odd hour of the bright Alaskan summer night.  (2 or 3 am)

We had startled each other I had been booking it for home walking on my own and she had popped from around the corner from one of the neighborhoods off of C street in downtown Anchorage.  Seemingly appearing out of nowhere from behind a light pole.

We laughed about it and I applogized for nearly running into here and in a moment it became clear she was clealy clean and fed and not homeless…but was more than a little disoriented but trying not to show it.

She asked me if the Church across the street was open and I told her I did not know.  I asked her if she needed help and she said no.  She wandered off across the street and tried the door of the church, it was locked.

She did though.  Someone needed to do… well, something… I walked off a little ways so as not to scare her off and I called the police and waited around watching her wander back towards the neighborhood she had suddenly walked around the corner into my life from.  I waited and watched discreetely from around the corner as the police came and talked to her and helped her get back into the residential care house she had wandered out from.

I talked briefly to one of the cops before I headed home.


We always have the power of choice.  What would you live for?  What would you die for?  We choose our actions and reactions and we are responsible for them.

If its the easy option or choice, it’s probably not the right one.

Lots of thoughts and memories rambling around m y brain and circling the Cross-roads of my mind.



Pagan money and South Africa

So in response to my Raise your glass in a toast edition of Honoring the New Year, the ever fabulous Atumn Windwalker (who, if she ever settles down on one blog for more than a few months, will be a major star in the Pagan blogosphere!!) had this to say…

“I’d be hesitant to make South African purchases, however, because witch hunts are rampant through the country, and they do get ugly.

Yes, people are victimized, and quite badly, because they are accused of witchcraft. Children are thrown out of their homes, women are beaten, etc. It’s not good.

Just a heads up.”

I’d like to take a moment to argue the exact opposite…

It’s worse than that, folks have been killed!   Yet, it’s not exactly boycott material, at least for me…

As I understand the issue, the “Witch Hunts” in South Africa, and in other countries on the Continent, are a result of superstition and cultural issues and not any sort of organized government programs.   These tragic incidents, where innocent folks in rural areas have been killed, have a lot more to do with the ignorance…

“my cow died it must be old lady so-and-so’s fault… she cursed it, she’s a Wiiitch!!!”

…than with either modern Paganism or the South African government.

In point of fact, in the face of these awful killings the South African government has been very active in trying to respond, as had the South African Neo-Pagan community,  this resulted in some friction (briefly) with the SA Pagan community, but the government clarified its position and hopefully things are on the mend.

For myself, had I the money to spare I would buy a bottle of the previously mentioned wine and pray that some portion of my money worked its way to do good.  I would also look at some of the groups listed below to see what sort of work they might be doing to stop the tide to superstition based murder.

Autumn has reminded me that it is important to consider where your spending your money.  A favorite theme of mine, actually!

Thanks Autumn!

My favorite South African Pagan Blogger

Aquila ka Hecate

~ That she’s the only one I know of, is ENTIRELY immaterial!!   Her writing is personal and evocative.

South African Pagan Community Groups

South African Pagan Council

South African Pagan Rights Alliance

Pagan Federation of South Africa

Pagan Federation International South Africa

A Pagan Witches Touchstone ~ a report from the above mentioned organization examining the social, cultural, and legal situation of Witch Hunts in depth.

Vuya! Pagan ~ a Southern Hemisphere Pagan portal site offering news and forums

Immersed in community

So that pretty much describes how I’ve spent this week-end.  Starting a new project in the community, and commiting to myself to restart an old one.

Reading and writing and posting in the Pagan blogoshpere… hearing from some friends and making some new ones.

Writing and contemplating… neglecting some of my other projects and plans for the week-end truth be told.

But its been nice.  A lot of writing…ages…AGES… since I’ve done so much writing.   Also wrestling with HTML here at Chrysalis and a bit at the Pagan Collegium has helped me to learn a little bit more of that arcane language…

Huh, maybe for art everyday month I could do a collage using Theban letters and HTML syntax???

I wrote and submitted an article version of my post on Invoking the Power of the Pagan Dollar… hope it gets published… if not I will look around for somewhere else to publish it…

I also commited acts of ritual three times in the last three days…


I am tired after work and feeling a touch feverish.  Under the mistaked impression that the 9th was the night of the Full Moon, and wishing, to do SOMETHING to honor it… I find a glass goblet in the cupboard and pour some filtered water into it.

I go outside into the glorious moonlight.

A cloudless sky and the Moon’s light reflects on the water and the curved bottom of the goblet as I bless and consecrate the liquid.  The effect is as if I have a pale and luminescent liquid silver in the cup.

I call the Lady and Lord and pour the water out in honor of them…

I feel good for having done it, but there is no… moment.

Some of you may be surprised to see me say that, sometimes I am sure my writing makes folks thinks that I live every other moment in the magickal and theistic zone.  Goddess knows I try, but sometimes not so much.

The important thing in those moments is to just accept and move on…

“Never, Never, Never give up!”


Not a bad mantra… anyways, I went to bed and had some trouble falling asleep as the Moon was rather like a kleig light shining throughout the windows of the house.


Realizing that this, rather than the day before, was the day of the full moon… and feeling a bit better for having slept for a ridiculous number of hours the night before… once I did get to bed.  THIS was the day I was going to try again…

Once again the Full Moon was almost ridiculously bright.  I didn’t try it but I am pretty sure I could have read a book it was so bright!  I thought about bringing out my Tarot cards at one point.

I set up an impromptu altar with my Athame, and Tibetan Bells, and challice, and a pitcher, and bowl and incense burner etc…

I blessed the incense as a creature of Earth and Air, and the incense in the same manner… using a mix of Copal and Frankincense and Myrrh it makes sense to me to do so…

I spoke a few simple words declaring the space blessed and sacred and rang the Tibetan Bells to seal the deal.  (the kind that look like really fat little cymbals on a string?)

I blessed and consecrated the water pouring some into my challice.

I turned to the North and called to the God of the Witches, the Lord of the Hunt, the Lord of the Forests and Fields, Wise Youth and Wild Man who is the two-fold God and Guardian of the Gates.

I turned to the East and called to the Goddess of the Witches, The Three-fold Goddess, the Lady of the Fields and Forests who is the Maiden of Promise, the Mother of the Mysteries, and the Ancient Wise One of the Night

They came… not dramatically so, but I had their friendly and gentle attention.

I made offerings of blessed and pure water and of incense unto them.

Thanked them in my heart and rang the bells once more.

… later I thought about it and performed the symbolic rite with Athame and Challice…

… I need to do some meditating and thought on that, I am feeling at once ambivalent and drawn once more to that magick and its symbolism…

of course I am feeling drawn to a more formal level of Witchcraft and practice once more too!


In response to something I’d read I wrote the Prayer for a Lady and her dogs, and under a less gloriously full moon I prayed and made offerings of incense to She to whom that prayer is addressed.

All in all, a busy weekend

A Prayer for a lady and her dogs…

hecate4Thrice Great Hecate, I call to you,

Most honored amongst the gods,

Lady of the Earth and Sky and Sea,

Under brightest Moon I call across the nights to you,

The New Moon’s Mistress,

Torch bearing, Lady of the Hounds, hear me.

You who is the Queen of Phantoms,

Keeper of the Keys of Creation,

Crossroads Golden clad Guide,

Gorgo, Mormo, Thousand faced Night,

Come unto us.

Come unto us oh eldest of the Gods,

Who is also the Night Wandering Maiden,

Come unto us,

Bringing your justice and judgement down

upon those who have slain the innocent animals

of an unmet sister witch from across the World!

Honoring The New Year: Raise your glass in a toast!!

Honoring the New Year, is a series of posts highlighting sites and links, that I find amusing or inspiring when viewed through the lens of my identity and world-view as a Witch and Pagan.

So I was surfing the internet the other day, trying to correct and expand some of the links on my “Links!” page… it was brought to my attention that several of the links originally listed in Ceremonial Magick more properly belonged in their own area under Thelema…when I discovered todays amusement…

Thelema Mountain Vineyards

No!  Seriously!!

South Africa is, over all, rather blessed for a country its size with a fair amount of wine country, a long history of viticulture and vintnery.  Ostensibly named for the Abbey of Thelema from Rabelais’ “Gargantua and Pantagruel” this Vineyard and Winery is in  Stellenbosch, which is the epicenter of the Wine making industry of South Africa.   Stellenbosch is the Loire, The Napa or Okanagan Valley of South Africa.

Now is definitely the time to try wines some of the superlative wines  from South Africa as global warming will undoubtedly have some variety limiting and production altering effects on this viticultural earthly paradise.

See, wine grapes come in all different varieties… species too, but the main species for wine making is Vitis Vinifera… and these different varieties evolved in some very specific areas and under specific conditions… and these are the conditions that certain grape varieties thrive under.

This is why you have some French Champagne houses looking at investing in land in the South of Britain as an early investment against global warming. The Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Meunier grapes that are used in Champagne may not be suitably grown in the Champagne region by the end of this century.  No word yet on what they’d actually call French made Champagne grown somewhere other than Champagne… since you’d pretty much HAVE to make it near the vinyards to ensure quality…

…did I mention that wine grapes are finicky?

Anyhow now is definitely the time to start trying out wines from South Africa, while they are at their finest and the peak of their game.  If you’re looking for an investment in the future start looking to unconventional wine regions like Canada… yes, I said Canada.

Now the observant amongst you may have observed that when talking about Thelema Vineyards, I said “Ostensibly named after…” well go read their about our name page and tell me what you think…




Honoring the New Year: One Person Makes a Difference!

Honoring the New Year, is a series of posts highlighting sites and links, that I find amusing or inspiring when viewed through the lens of my identity and world-view as a Witch and Pagan.

One Person Makes a Difference!

Hello Dear Pagans, and PFF’s!*

So this site is actualy the one that inspired this little series of posts.  I was watching CNN earlier today and saw an article on the Green Bag Lady and her efforts to spread Green shopping/gift bags around to anyone who wants one and I just found it delightful and inspiring!

Teresa is a professor of Digital Photography and an artist.  She started making re-usable fabric shopping bags for her family, and found she (like a lot of fabric crafters) had a huge pile of extra fabric she wasn’t doing anything with… so she made some extra bags and gave them away.

She decided to keep doing this.  She makes fabric shopping/gift bags and gives them away, for free.  Her philosophy is…

They are a gift. I want you to feel obligated to use them, that is why I have you promise to use them instead of paper or plastic. If you were to buy them from me, they become a commodity and there is no obligation any longer because you own it. A gift is owned by both people. I know that usually one bag is not enough but if I GIVE you one, you might start thinking about your usage and buy other bags to supplement your collection (and maybe even start thinking about recycling, composting, consumption and consumerism).”

~from her blog/site “Why am I doing This”

Not only does she give away the bags, she shares her patterns for shopping bags, gift wrap bags, and produce bags with others and has inspired others to start similar projects!  Just one person deciding to carry her commitment to Greener living forward in a new direction.

In the face of War and Economic Crisis it can be easy to forget that each of us has Power.  The power to choose our reactions, the power to chose our actions, the power to DO something rather than nothing.  Each of us, each and every single one of us, can make a difference in the world; if we invoke our power and choose to do something.

Folks like Teresa remind us of that.

Thanks Teresa!!



*PFF= Pagan Friendly Folk.

Honoring the New Year

Hello dear Pagans!

So were are in the first throes of a New Year with a lot of changes coming down the pike. We are moving towards Imbolc (and Imbolc Poetry Blogging…YAY!!) and I am contemplating the core of Imbolc just as I did for Yule a few weeks ago.

I have decided to honor the new year, and look into new things and ideas as a lead in to Imbolctide.

2009 c.e. ( or e.v. for those Thelemites out there) has proven to be a time of great changing tides in the U.S. with a new and historic Presidency about to begin.

Nor are the times and tide of change limited to the National level, our own community has seen a burst of creativity and discussion in the wake of The Wild Hunt’s recent article and  recent update about the end of the fine Pagan podcast Deos Shadow.

The amazing conversations that emerged in the comments section have spurred a lot of interesting posts and a lot of discussion across the Pagan blogasphere.

Inspired by these conversation I have started a new project and am trying to reinvigorate an old one…

The Pagan Community Builders list is a project I started a couple of years ago.. and then my daily life took several complicated turns… I entered school for my A.S. degree in Hospitality and Restaurant Management.  I started working a new job at a theme park, and my daily life became a mad rush of days… that eventually led me to start this blog… which led me to the Wild Hunt which led me to reinvigorate the Pagan Community Builders List.

(strange how life cycles around on us isn’t it?!)

The new project is The Pagan Collegium, where I am trying to get folks interested in polite and intelligent conversations about some of the academic topics related to modern Paganism to get together and discuss things… please check it out!

As I mentioned, I have decided to honor the new year, and look into new things and ideas as a lead in to Imbolctide.

This will be a series of posts highlighting sites and links that I find amusing or inspiring when viewed through the lens of my identity and world-view as a Witch and Pagan.   I hope you will join me in exploring the spirit of change and honoring 2009!

Signs of hope

There have been a lot of discussions about Pagan community floating around the net recently… the good news is that we have one. Not, perhaps a conventional one, but we have one!

As was noted at The Wild Hunt on Jan. 2nd, Pagan musician S. J. Tucker was recently hospitalized with severe abdominal pain, doctors believe it may be appendicitis but are still performing tests.

The call went out on the Wild Hunt and throughout the Net.  Facebook and Livejournal groups were created, CD’s were put on a special sale price to encourage vollume sales for fundraising, and Artists in and friendly to the Pagan community and Ms. Tucker came together to create a special fundraising book of art and stories that includes the work of some major artists!  (the book doesn’t go on sale until February 22nd or so, so order your copy now!)

The great news in all this was reported recently on Facebook…

These numbers are -slightly- out of date, but they’re exciting.

In the first week of the Give a Healthy Dose of Sooj fundraiser, we have managed to raise:

Album Sales: $4,253.77
Downloads: $958.38
Donations: $8,858.42
Subscriptions: $93.90

Total $14,164.47

That, my friends, is what we have done in 7 days.

We are more than half-way to twenty-five thousand dollars.

We are almost half-way to our theoretical upper cost of thirty thousand dollars.

All of this in less than a week!
How fabulous is that?