I’m back from a trip to Tennessee for my mother’s 80th birthday. It was a good trip, and I’m particularly thankful we got out of DFW when the weather had airlines canceling flights by the hundreds. In the course of normal catching up with friends and family, I got some news about a guy I went to church with as a kid – we’ll call him Albert, to protect the not-so-innocent. It seems he now has an advancing case of Parkinson’s Disease. He was a few years ahead of me – that would put him in his e … [Read more...]

Coming to the Edge of the Circle

Back in December, Chad Clifton had a blog post on Coming to the Edge of the Circle where he used it as an example of a Pagan scholar doing academic work in a Pagan setting. This is not a normal occurrence in academia: there is an unstated assumption that Wicca and other “new religions” aren’t worthy of serious study, and there is an assumption that anyone who practices them will be unable to separate the study of her religion from advocacy for her religion. In this book, Nikki Bado-Fralick atte … [Read more...]

Religion and Money

One of the points of division in the recent split in the Feri tradition of witchcraft concerns charging money for teaching, as Jason Pitzl-Waters describes in this very good, very neutral piece on yesterday’s Wild Hunt. The issue of charging for religious services and the larger topic of the role of money in religion can be just as volatile in Pagan circles as it is in more mainstream religions.On one side is the idea that whatever we have learned (be it history, structure, lore or magic) was t … [Read more...]