The Allergic Pagan at Play: “wild” nature as soul food

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Even while I sat at home scratching my poison ivy, I never once regretted the trip to the woods. I enjoyed every minute of it. And I wondered what it was about this experience that that I find so satisfying. The vistas were beautiful. We saw some fascinating rock formations. And I loved climbing on the rocks. But it was more than that. I just loved being in the woods. Before the trip, I felt a profound longing to get into the woods again. While we were there, I felt like I was right where I needed to be. And when we left, I felt really satisfied, kind of like like I had eaten a really good meal, but in a spiritual sense. [Read more...]

Who is reading this blog? (results)

In my last post, I offered a survey to find out who my readers are.  And I found out some interesting things about you … 1.  Over of you identify primarily as Pagan/Neo-Pagan (35%) or Wiccan/Witch (17%). This was not surprising, considering the makeup of the larger Pagan community.  There is also the fact that [Read More...]

Who is Reading this Blog? (Survey)

Jason Mankey recently raised the question “Who are we writing for?”  This got me thinking. In the interest of getting to know my readers better, please answer the short 10-question survey below …   Create your free online surveys with SurveyMonkey , the world’s leading questionnaire tool. [Read more...]

Five ritualists I’d like to invite to dinner, Part 3: Jason Mankey

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This is the third in a series in which I showcase some of the best ritualists I have met (in no particular order). Over the years I have especially enjoyed reading Jason Mankey’s posts about ritual. He has a good mix of nitty-gritty practical advice and big picture thinking. Here are some examples of Jason’s wisdom that have helped me in writing rituals. [Read more...]

When bad people do good things: separating art from its author in the context of patriarchal privilege

Women in our culture are routinely characterized by their behavior, while men are given a pass so that we can focus on the content of their ideas. How will our community respond to news that popular author Marion Zimmer Bradley abused children? [Read more...]

Why I don’t trust the gods (at least not if I’m alone with one)

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I think it’s a mistake to assume the gods are benign. The word “worship” derives from the Old English word for “worthy”. I wonder then, why have I rarely seen the question asked whether the Pagan gods are worthy of worship. To put it another way, why should we assume the gods can be trusted? If the gods are paragons of virtue, are they not also paragons of vice? The polytheistic gods, as I understand them, are not necessarily good and they are not omni-benevolent. If the myths are to be believed on any level, the gods are just as flawed as human beings — they just have more power. Why bow down to power, if it is not paired with virtue? One answer perhaps is that the gods should be worshiped because they are — just as nature can be worshiped because it is. Nature is not moral or virtuous, but worship (or reverence) is a natural human response to it. But worshiping something and trusting it are two different things. I don’t ever assume that nature is benign or trustworthy. Why should we assume the gods are trustworthy? [Read more...]


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