Can a human being be the spirit of a place?

My Marie Laveau altar for St. John's Eve

I started out thinking of Marie Laveau as a kind of local spirit of New Orleans, and wound up learning a lot about Conyers. [Read more...]

The Witchcraft of Place

pokeweed

Every so often, I teach a workshop I call “Ditch Witch: Magical Uses of Common Roadside Plants”…Nearly everything I could possibly need, magically speaking, is within a mile of where I am sitting right now. I live in a treasure trove built partly of ecology and partly of culture; both the vibrant, complex, living ecosystems of the Southeast, and the slow-built web of knowledge that ties the people to the land. [Read more...]

The Past is a Place We Still Inhabit

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

Our belief that the present is somehow exceptional, that we are modern and more developed than other peoples and from our “primitive” state sustains both our disenchanted world and the racism of Western culture. [Read more...]

Oiche Fhéile Bhríde: The Eve of St. Brighid’s Feast

Tomorrow night is the eve of St. Brighid’s Feast, perhaps one of the most celebrated holidays in Ireland. No, there won’t be any mad parties or green beer; not even wild heathen drumming on the High Places. Instead, the evening is about family, purification, and continuity of ancient practices. [Read more...]

Paganism’s Messiah Complex

Red Moths

A troubling component of the western centric world view can be found within western paganism. As second and first generation pagans continue to question and redefine cultural understanding, one narrative that is particularly antithetical to pagan values ought to be considered: anthropocentrism. [Read more...]

Cycles of Cultural Destruction

When we talk about cycles of domestic violence, there are many things that we have learned to help families end the violence. Have we developed a theory of healing for nations? How can we hope to end the violence against cultures if we don’t? [Read more...]

The Place Where I’m Not Weird

Sea Creatures.  Art in Beacon Hill Light Rail Station, Seattle, Washington

Beyond the walls of a building, home is also the place where you know how things work. Home is about the things we surround ourselves with — the consumer goods, yes, but also the plants and animals, the scent of the foods we make, our choice of incense or synthetic room fresheners. [Read more...]


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