The Garments of the Gods

Druid Grotto

We have our reasons when we travel.  Work. Vacation. Friends and family and all the rituals of life and death with which we celebrate our existences and world our stories into each other. Sometimes wanderlust or curiosity, the need for refuge.  Sometimes we flee a horrible place in hopes of security. Sometimes we travel towards a new place, one we do not yet know. I don't know if we take our gods with us, or if they are always in everyplace, but I know they often look different.  I wonder … [Read more...]

Creating a Place-Based Practice

my Little Bigs at Pedernales Falls

On the second dark moon of January, a group of 9 gathered in my front garden. We sought uncharted territory; in fact, were willing to risk vulnerability to find it.  The group of explorers met to carefully plan the expedition.  We knew the journey might stretch every resource and tool we possessed, yet we were  drawn to try--to dare.  For there, in my front garden that night, was the first meeting of an advanced working group committed to discovering the Place specific spirituality of … [Read more...]

The Value of Communities of Place

Knit-bombed Seattle. Image by sterling 2011

Last week, stuck in the Southeastern Snowmageddon, it looked as if I might not make it to Seattle at all, but Friday morning, before the sun dared even think about creeping up over the horizon, I climbed into a taxi and rode on icy streets to the Greensboro airport. I had been rebooked for free on a series of flights one day later than I'd originally booked because of the weather. The weather was still icy, but at least it wasn't actively snowing that morning. Even so, the plane took off late. … [Read more...]

The Place of Death.

Photo by Anne Burgess

Two weeks ago a friend of mine was feeling unwell. She'd been under a lot of stress. She was prone to anxiety at the best of times, but at that point she was overwhelmed completely. That Sunday she'd collapsed in the park while she walked her dog. She thought that she'd fainted from a panic attack. A neighbour helped her back to her 3rd floor apartment. The next day, she reached out to friends to ask for help with walking her dog and dealing with other practical matters while she tried to get … [Read more...]

The Past is a Place We Still Inhabit

Roman Aqueduct in Segovia, Spain (CC Manuel González Olaechea y Franco)

...what allows historians to historicize the medieval or the ancient is the very fact these worlds are never completely lost.  We inhabit their fragments even when we classify ourselves as modern and secular. --Dipesh Chakrabarty, Provincializing Europe As I've stated before, the disenchantment of the earth is not only something that happens "to us," but something which occurs through us, whether conscious or not.  Recognizing our complicity in the disenchantment of the  world is … [Read more...]

Wide Angle Vision Part 3: Ignoring the Impacts

While reading The Lost Language of Plants: The Ecological Importance of Plant Medicines for Life on Earth recently, I found myself shocked at how I'd completely ignored the ecological impacts of modern medicine on the environment. The book goes into great detail about how the concentrated chemicals that make up pharmaceuticals end up in our water and air, in some cases excreted from the human body absolutely unchanged. Buhner points to a whole range of environmental problems triggered by modern … [Read more...]

Wide Angle Vision Part 2: Missing The Variables

Dice

A few weeks ago, I saw this video on my Twitter feed. At first, I was excited to see something that would talk about the way that our biases leak into our math, but instead I was annoyed to find that the video actually showed the opposite problem. What I see in this video is a tendency toward the sort of reductionism that gets in the way of broader understanding. We have a woman who studied philosophy in college and was politically active at the time. Now she's a bank teller. Someone says … [Read more...]


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