Solsticetide Eclipse and learning to respect the moments momentous and mundane…

Dear Friends,

Tonight I have had the privilege of seeing the Waning and Waxing Crescent within hours of each other.  The chill night air and the Moon in the sky dancing with the shadow of the Earth.  Strange to watch this celestial dance and think of how they and we are all, somehow, the stuff of stars.

Thou art God, Thou art Goddess, we and They are all one and many and interconnected and miraculous.

There is wonder in this old Universe yet!  Once more the Child of Promise is stirring, as the Crone and Maiden and Mother dance in the jewel bedecked halls of Night.  The Miracles of the Solstice are nigh, my friends, and we will welcome Him back into life and light soon.  Solstice Eve tonight (21st) and Solstice Day in the morning (22nd), and we shall welcome a New Year round soon.

I have always related to the Solstices and Equinoxes as major occasions, a natural result of an Alaskan upbringing when the Winter Solstice shall see 4 hours of daylight if the sky is not blanketed with thick gray clouds.  The Winter Solstice is the turning of my spiritual New Year, followed shortly by the Calendarical…

Drink deeply of mystery and wonder and poetry and promise my friends, drink deeply of mulled wine or sweet Sangria and Breathe deep the Breath of Life and sing and hope and dream and smile and laugh and feast with friends.  Whether you huddle round a bonfire in a chill night or spend the night bbq-ing with friends, or savoring stew cooked on the stove of by the fireside.  Light Candles and kindle fires and stare deep into flames listening to the wisdom from the flickering tongues that whispered to our ancestors oh so ever so long ago.

There is wonder and power in any Winter Solstice, and this one is more precious still for the overlapping of the Eclipse…  and yet one of the lessons of my own journey that I am filled to overflowing with this year as I feel the strange alchemy of the Solstice tide turn what had been a sense of stillness turned to stagnation and a spiritual bleakness cracking open to the wonder and possibilities and hope of this time of year; one of the lessons I have learned and should like to share is this, there is wonder and magick and Mysteries and power and possibility in our simplest acts if we open to it.

I am reminded of this, especially this time of year as I watch so many people get caught up in the mad rush of days, indeed a dear friend, who lives in the North East U.S., expressed exhaustion at everything that needed doing this Holiday Season… and some part of me began to flow with the first stirrings of the Solstice miracles…. I wrote to her…

Breathe the breath of life, Inspire, draw in life giving air, life force, and Spirit, take a step and feel air and blood and magick flow. 

Know the simple blessing of breath and movement and magick. Feel the blessed benediction of the bloo…d in your veins. Where there is soreness then stop for a moment, stand and breathe into the pain… sending air and energy to whatever needs strengthening and balancing loosening the pain and repositioning your body until it moves from “ow” to “ah, that’s alright”, then stride forward once more with grace and ease.

Movement is more purposeful now, more the prowl of a panther than the leap of a gazelle, but every movement and every breath and every conscious action is a blessing and benediction unto ourselves and the world.

If we remember the powers of Air and the benediction of breath.


Light a candle, or pour a hot toddy, take a moment to warm yourself by the wood-stove or the fire or simply with hands clasped around a cup of strong black tea with cinnamon and citrus rind…. take a moment to breath in the fragrant steam, take a moment to lose yourself in the candles flame.

Look inside yourself and seek your spiritual fire and inner light. Take a breath and send air and energy to your personal fires, take a breath and open yourself to the Light of Lady and Lord, to His Light, to The Light of which we and They are a part.

Remember the blessings and benedictions of Fire.


Bundle up and take your freshly poured tea outside a moment. Look at the snow and ice around you and realize that one of Mysteries of Water is that it can be so many things…. It can be hard enough to scour the mountains to fine fertile dust, in can fall and fly crystalline and wind borne, it can flow along the earth, it can fall warm or cold from the sky… We are also capable of many things and forms in our emotions and our ways of acting and reacting…

Make a snowball and throw it at a wall, how does it react on impact? How are you reacting to the impacts from the mad rush of days?

Take a likely icicle and stir your tea with it, cooling the overheated liquid until it is drinkable, turning a burning liquid into nourishment, Transformation…

Go inside and mix salt and water and draw stars and snowflakes on your window panes… leave them a while and then when the patterns shine through later remember to yourself that you can transform you can choose how to react and what form your spirit and emotions shall take..

Take time for a hot hot bath, or a shower and a lustral bath, with soothing herbs…

Luxuriate in the Mysteries of the Waters…


Breathe in the fragrant scent of the pines, stir up a pot of stew on the stove, light a few scented candles in the rooms of the house and just take some time reveling in your home. It is a place of wonder and blessings and nourishment and nurturance. Determine to take 10 minutes to do nothing but sit in Your Spot and sip something and eat something and silently enjoy Your home and hearth and what health you have.

Bake something for your beloveds, go through the pantry and see what supplies you need to stock up on so that on the next expedition you can fill the pantry and plan something special for those you love and for yourself…

Savor the mysteries of Earth….

We are all magickal, we are all miraculous, there is wonder and power aplenty if we open ourselves to them.  Whatever your climate, wherever you are dear friends, you too can take time, MUST make and take the time to savor the moments and the Mysteries.
Bright Blessings and Much Love to you all,

So This is Solstice….

Hello Dear Friends and Pagani,

So the Solsticetide weather has had a mix of overcast and foggy and colder than usual.  Oddly enough its been quite enjoyable for me in spite of an unexpected  $2,300 car repair…  Never a dull moment here folks!

Here is a fun Winter Solstice video making the rounds…

I am looking forward to the Winter Solstice Service at the U.U. Church and the Solstice Vigil afterwards, both sponsored this year my the Mystic Grove a U.U. Pagan group affiliated with my new church.  Yesterday at the Sunday Services at the U.U. the older children of the Sunday School performed a lovely play they wrote about the Different Spirits of the Holidays … Solstice and Hanukkah, and Christmas, and New Years, and the spirits of Night and Light having a meeting to discuss the nature of light in peoples lives… it was cool.  Our interim Minister Rev. Roberta’s sermon discussed how we as U.U.’s whether Christian or not can embrace Christmas…

She discussed how EVERY night a child is born is a holy night, and that child and its potential is sacred.   Her sermon was quite lovely… as part of her reading she shared part of an essay from an op-ed piece (which of course I cannot remember the name of the author of… I will have to ask her tonight…)

This gentleman was remebering the Dominican Nun who had been his 2nd grade teacher, and how that year for the 2nd grad Christmas mural she encouraged the children to protray the birth of Jesus taking place in Japan, with Jesus and Mary and Joseph and the Angel with Asian features… the author really didn’t think about the deeper meaning of that act until years later as he did the math and realized that his 2nd grade Christmas holiday would have been in December of 1941…

The sermon also discussed how we as U.U.’s can carry our principles and ideals with us as we celebrate with our larger family’s who may not understand our religion, and how we can carry the spirit of this holiday with us as we engage our families and friends about discussions of issues like hunger and homelessness and charitable giving.  Growing up in a fairly secular family, and then coming home to Paganism I always felt a little left out in some respects this time of year, but at the end of Services yesterday I thanked Rev. Roberta for giving me Christmas as a Religious Holiday.

My thoughts are dancing with the many thoughts of Solstice.  I bought some ready-made cookie dough and will be taking a variety of cookies with me tonight to the coffee hour after Services, and to hopefully nibble on during the vigil, or at least as long as I last.

My Solstice-tide thoughts are of the many ways that hearth and home, joy and hospitality and charity, and a certain raucous decadence, all intermingle from the many Ancient Paganisms ways of honoring this time of year.   The urge to celebrate something this time of year has actually spurred the creation of new festivals amongst those Pagans whose ancient forms did not HAVE a specific festival for the Solstice… Helieogenna (two day and nine day versions) the Hellenic Polytheist Solstice observance…

We want to celebrate things this time of year.  I am unsure if this is a result of the current immersion Contemporary Paganism has within a larger Christian influenced monotheistic culture.  Sometimes I think so, but sometimes I also wonder if maybe as the nights grow long and the temperatures cool if we don’t have some deep instinct to gather around our families and dear ones and share our love somehow.

Blessed Solstice to All,


Here are a few more fun Solstice things…

Winter Sostice as Viewed from Stonehenge.. (sadly embedding disabled…)

Solstice Musings June 21&22 2009

Dear Pagans,

So on the day of the Solstice itself the Big Guy had roped me into helping our friends Jolly and Canita (Note: Names changed to protect me from Canita!) move into their new house.

In some ways it was not at all unusual to be working hard in record setting heat, sweating underneath the Solstice Sun. There was then a bit of an impromptu Pool Party at their new house to thank all of us for the moving help.

Monday I was able to take a bottle of wine into the back yard and stand beneath the Summer Sun… breathing in the warm and heavy air I focused my mind and spirit on the Seasons of Solstice and Gay Pride, and upon the Spirits of Summer and Life, and of the ‘ancestral’ Spirits of my Queer Predecessors, and Dionysus and Antinous. I took a few moments to breath into my connections to these many Spirits of the Season; then I poured my libation of wine unto Them and poured myself a glass to also toast Them and I was able to light a single stick of incense before my lighter ran out of fuel…

Then, later that night, it was off to dinner with the same group of friends who had helped to move J & C…

Not a bad way to spend the Sabbat!

Peace and a Happy Solstice to you all!

Happy Winter Solstice and a Blessed New Year!

Cookie decorating a Tradition in our home...
Cookie decorating a Tradition in our home...

Yule is…

For me at least the turning of the year is one of the facets at the heart of Yule.  I’ve been trying to identify these core facets of the Sabbats ever since my life’s journey took me from Alaska to Florida, from the Sub-Arctic to the Sub-Tropical.  So setting aside some of the climactic and seasonal associations of the Sabbats and trying to find the core concepts has been concerning me of late.

“New Year”, not just cause Yule is followed closely by the secular/calender New Year, but for me Winter Solstice has always felt more like the turning point of the years from one to the next.  Naturally enough I suppose for someone who spent 33 years of his life living in a land where Winter Solstice sees around 4 hours of daylight, and you know that from that point on the days get 5 minutes longer each day…

This is when we turn our focus and attention from the Beloved and Honored

Not a bad substitute for a hearth, sometimes...
Not a bad substitute for a hearth, sometimes...

Dead of Samhain, to the Honored and Beloved Living.  We turn from the introspection of inner mysteries to the mysteries of the hearth and heart and home.  We make cookies and prepare feasts and call up friends and family far and near.  We come back out of the shells of our introspection, that so many of us turn to at Samhaintide, and start to connect and reconnect with our families of biology and choice, with our dear friends, and to the earthly world around us.

It is a time to reconnect to that most essential of questions,

‘What can I give, what can I do to bring joy and peace into the world?’

It is easy to lose site of this aspect of the Yuletide with the crass commercialism of the modern day, but isn’t sharing our love and spreading joy to those we love and hold dear what this time of year is all about?

Yule is a grounding into our earthly lives as we prepare to honor the cycles of the world once more starting with Imbolc.

I spent this Yule at work at the park for a part of the day.  That evening I spend some quite time at home, took a few minutes to enjoy the night and the quite and thank the Divine for this Yule and the last year and the one ahead, and then snuggled up next to The Big Guy for a good nights sleep.

Not the flashiest Yule observance, but a nice and quiet one.

Happy Yule to all!


A few delightful links that speak to me about Yuletide…

Why Santa Claus is a Kachina

Bringing Light Where You Can

It’s a Narnia Christmas

Pagan Yuletide Media (mostly from Youtube)

A Pagan Yule

Solstice Bells (this I discovered thanks to Evn)

So it’s the Full Moon…

I close my eyes and open my heart

And I pray, pray, pray.

I raise my hands and I raise my voice

And I pray, pray, pray.

Lady, shine, shine down on me.

Lord, walk, walk away with me.

As I walk this journey

Through the mystery

I raise my voice and I kiss my hands,

And I pray, pray, pray.

~Pax 2008(C)

Solstice collors on the Crepe Myrtle
Solstice collors on the Crepe Myrtle

The temperatures have been chilly and wintery, for Central Florida anyway, with days in the 60’s and 50’s and chillier nights.  The Crepe Myrtle in the front yard is almost asleep, only a few leaves, green and gold and scarlet, clinging to its uppermost branch tips.  Counterballanced by the Live Oaks, which have shed all the leaves they care to, thank-you-very-much, and are rustling in the breeze.

Tonight there is an open Moon Circle that Tracie The Red has suggested I attend.  I am going to.

I have run hot and cold about being involved in the Pagan community down here.  Cold lately but I’m warming up again.

Lots of reasons, but I think the biggest one is that I just haven’t ended up getting out and making any friends of my own since moving down here.  I need to work on that!  I’ve made a couple of friends down here or but not close see you every week and hang out friends.   Mostly, I’ve made friends with Gene’s friends and that strange relationship alchemy of his friends becoming our friends has occurred.  Yet I miss having some close, close peeps of my own!

Anyhow I must soon be off…



The Journey goes on…

So I have been working on this site, adding links, and adding some new pages here and there, one of which is published if in continual progress.  The new page of this site is one on Daily Spiritual Practices.  An important topic and one that I can tell I needed some more reminders of.  Perhaps I should do like T. Thorn Coyle and regularly change my daily practices so they do not become routine?

On the other hand, while changing it up would help me remain mindful of my daily practice, as one blessed with ADHD routine… or at least structure, can very much be my friend…hmm… time to think on this I think!

I have also been working on an article I am hoping to sell for publication.

I am also now engaged in a permanent part-time position (hooray!) which in the theme park world is a lot better than being a seasonal employee.  Money is still desperately tight, but then I am not alone in that this Solsticetide Season.

Sunday will bring with it the Anniversary of Pearl Harbor and an opportunity to honor some of The U.S. fallen heroes, and those who currently stand guard over our freedoms.  While I may disagree with how we got into one of the Wars we are in, I will never hesitate to honor those who serve in the armed forces.

The Full Moon follows next week, with an opportunity to observe some aspects of my own personal Solstice observances.  Which I also need to think about in the near future.

Off to think and to bed!

Peace, and Blessed Be!


Some Solstice and Christmas notes for 2007

So I finished my final for my last class of my Associates degree on Wednesday 12/19/07 and await my graduations ceremony on January 26th.

Feeling a little betwixt and between about that, and the hectic nature of finals and final projects combined with a new set of job duties in my new department (or, rather a new set of duties within the same department) have left me exhausted and a little turned around. Thus the lack of posting as of late.

I did not, despite my intentions do any sort of ritual for the Solstice. I bathed and preped for one, but having taken a brief nap ended up so groggy and semi conscious that the only thing I could do was huddle under the covers and sleep. The new job involves a LOT more walking and my feet and ankles have been protesting a lot lately… whatever else you may learn in life take care of your feet, for they take care of you!

I had originally thought to do something special honoring Hecate on the longest night of the year, sort of a personal equation of the dark of the year with the dark of the moon when She is traditionally honored.

Instead I spent the actual day of Solstice, which I had off, with my partner. We had a quiet day at home for the most part and made some low sugar Splenda “sugar” cookies with a cream cheese icing and watched a movie and generally reveled in our humble hearth.

For Christmas Eve we have continued a tradition, started last year, of going out to Chineese food (“That was the year we discovered Chineese turkey…”) and then driving to the beach to sing some carrols and look up at the stars and out at the ocean.

Tonight was one of those rare astronomical thingies where the nearly full moon would reach its height at the same time that Mars was at the brightest it would be for the next 9 years! The weather was cool but not quite cold, although the sand on our soon bare feet was a little bit chilly. The tide was high and the moon was full and unbelievably bright.

The clouds were obscuring our view at first and I made a silent prayer/request to the elements of sand, sky, sea, and hearth fire, that the clouds would clear such that we could see the Moon and Mars.

The clouds did clear and I thank the spirits for it. It was an amazing and renewing night.

The moon shone an unbelievably cool and clear light, and Mars stood atop the dome of the sky twinkling red and bright.

I delighted me to think that on this of all nights the universe was unfolding its mysteries and that somewhere in that moment there were Witches dancing in their Circles and Pagans raising their voices in song.