Cathy and I visited the National World War II Museum in New Orleans last week. After seeing the Churchill War Rooms in London my expectations were low, but we were there for almost four very fascinating hours. The facts and artifacts were mostly not new to me but the presentation of the events and the stories that went with them was superb. My first impression was the level of sacrifice involved. Any war requires sacrifices by the combatants and by those caught in the crossfire. But this war … [Read more...]

A Special Christmas

I am not so old and cynical I can’t remember the joy that Christmas – a traditional American Christmas – can bring to a child. Nor am I so naïve I can’t recognize that my disdain for its materialistic aspects comes from a position of privilege. I remember being six or eight or ten years old and enjoying putting up the tree, shaking presents, shopping for gifts for the rest of the family… Those were wonderful times and I would not deny them to anyone of any age. The problem is one of proportio … [Read more...]

Christmas – Stop the Insanity

There has been a rash of activity on the Pagan side of the internet this week about Christmas and what – if anything – those of us who aren’t Christians should be doing with it. It began with this Wild Hunt post by Jason Pitlz-Waters, which summarized his entry on The Washington Post’s “On Faith” question “what is Christmas all about?” Jason basically argues that much of Christmas comes from older, pagan, universal Winter traditions, and thus belongs to everyone.Thorn Coyle took another angle, … [Read more...]

A Restful Solstice

The shortest day, the longest night, the return of the light, the rebirth of the Sun, the birth of the Sun God, the birth of countless gods and heroes... Whatever or whoever you're celebrating, remember that Winter is the season of rest. In the midst of all the preparations and parties, relatives and rituals, feasting and frivolity, take some time to sit quietly and reflect. And rest. Mainly rest. Happy Solstice! … [Read more...]

Pagan Studies

Chad Clifton has two blog posts titled “Why We Do Pagan Studies” – Part 1 is here and Part 2 is here. They’re brief looks at Pagan scholarship from the perspective of a professional scholar and they make for interesting reading.Jason Pitzl-Waters at The Wild Hunt links to the first post here, where he says:I think some of us have fallen into the trap of labeling Pagan Studies works as “advanced” books for our faiths, when they should instead be seen as an illuminating aid towards deeper understa … [Read more...]

Income and Life Expectancy

Here’s a video from the BBC that’s worth four minutes of your time. The introduction is a bit slow – bear with it through about 45 seconds and you’ll be hooked. It’s a presentation on income levels and life expectancy by Hans Rosling, Professor of Global Health at the Karolinska Institute in Sweden. The presentation itself is a fascinating way to present data to make a point. It’s a reminder that no matter how important your message is, the communication process first requires you to gain and … [Read more...]

CUUPS Yule Circle

If you're in the DFW area, come out and join us next Saturday evening for our Yule Circle.   … [Read more...]


This is the third time I’ve started composing a blog entry on Julian Assange and WikiLeaks – to say that I am ambivalent would be a serious understatement. The far left is ready to canonize him and the far right is ready to hang him (and may ultimately succeed, figuratively If not literally). I have no great wisdom to offer. I have only questions.What is the ultimate goal of international diplomacy? How should we engage regimes with values antithetical to our own? When – in international re … [Read more...]