May the First


For many Pagans the first of May is Beltane. In the past I never celebrated this holiday that much. I came into my own as a Pagan living in the San Francisco Bay Area and I struggled to feel the rhythms of the Land there and the turnings of the Wheel. Beltane made more sense when I lived in Wales, especially as that Land is rife with the Fey. And then we moved again, this time to Washington State. I had no standard practice for this holiday and so I let it slide. But no more. This day is full to … [Read more...]

Procession of the Species


Nestled between Earth Day and May Day/Beltaine is the Procession of the Species in Olympia, WA. Procession is a set of a parades, a luminary night time parade on Friday evening and a Saturday afternoon one, that occurs in the last weekend of April, in conjunction with Arts Walk. It's been happening for 20 years. It's one of my favorite community gatherings of all time and is one of the reasons I love Olympia so damn much.Why? I love a good parade. I love creativity, marching bands, the … [Read more...]

The Vocabulary of Spiritual Practice, part 1

The Kitchen Shrine

Humans like boundaries and definitions. We like order. Understanding what something is or is not happens early on in our development and helps us to make sense of the world. I learn a lot about humanity by watching my kids. When infants and older babies, there is no male or female, no boy or girl. There are only people that are safe. Once self-awareness begins somewhere in the third and fourth years (2 or 3) noticing body parts and differences, as well as growing a vocabulary for explaining … [Read more...]

Expanding My Horizons


Many years ago I spent an extended period of time only reading works and listening to music by women. The male voice is overwhelmingly dominant in our society. Surrounding myself exclusively with women's voices and perspectives was soothing, inspiring, and very clarifying. I have decided that I needed to reset my perspective and do the same with race. The white experience is overwhelmingly dominant in our society. It doesn't help that I am and my world is overwhelmingly white. It's time to … [Read more...]

Preparation for Practice

My kala cup/chalice. It used to be part of a pair. My mother bought them in Israel around 1970.

[This is the second in a series on practice. Read part one here.]How do we prepare to practice?Sometimes the preparation is the practice; sometimes it's an important precursor to the practice.I talked a lot yesterday about the grounding and aligning I do as part of my breath work. I do that before and after almost everything I do: prayers, offerings, meditation, trance, ritual, etc. Grounding and aligning is the preparation for further work and is the work itself.The Feri/Faery … [Read more...]

Foundations of Practice

The Kitchen Shrine

River Devora has a monthly meeting for discussion among polytheists at her house. Those of us far away can attend online, which I did the first month, and will do again. Yesterday's gathering was all about practice. I wasn't able to attend (virtually or otherwise) as I was singing my heart out at the third and final choir performance of Dvorak's Mass in D and Fauré's Requiem. I was, however, able to see the list of questions that were discussed and I'd like to use it for blog fodder. The topic … [Read more...]

Kindred Spirits


I have a gully. Some people have a forest, I have a gully. It's only about 7 blocks from my house. The deep gully has houses lining the tops of the sides. People walk, run and bike through it. But it's the wildest, greenest space that I can get to without driving.I've been needing to get out more. Get offline. Get away from the bills and to-do lists. I've been taking the kids for walks up and down it, almost daily. This piece of land and I are taking our relationship to the next level, from … [Read more...]