The Tar Sands Pipeline

I've got a new piece up on No Unsacred Place about the proposed pipeline to bring oil from the Alberta tar sands to Gulf Coast refineries.  It's an ugly project that I oppose, but the situation is complex and deserves some explanation and some thought.Go read it, and while you're there check out some of the other writers' work.tar sands extraction in Alberta, Canada.  … [Read more...]

Interfaith Service for 9/11

There will be an interfaith service of peace and hope on the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks at 6:00 PM at the First United Methodist Church of Denton.  I'm very happy the Denton County ministers who organized it (including DUUF's Rev. Pam Wat) reached out to include as many faith groups as possible - including Pagans.  I'll be speaking (very briefly) on behalf of Denton CUUPS, and David Sparks will participate as a representative of Temple Spiritualis Compassare.Additionally, … [Read more...]

Unverified Personal Gnosis

I had an interesting conversation (if a couple of comments in a blog can be considered “conversation”) with Alison Lilly in regards to her most recent Dining With Druids podcast. Episode 9 is titled “Holy Personal Gnosis, Batman!” – Ali and her husband-to-be Jeff discussed what is sometimes called “Unverified Personal Gnosis” or UPG. UPG is first-hand religious experience. It’s what happens when a goddess or god speaks to you. It’s what happens when a Pentecostal Christian is “filled with the … [Read more...]

The Book of Druidry

The Book of Druidry is a classic text by Ross Nichols (1902 – 1975), the founder of the Order of Bards, Ovates and Druids. The book was written in segments by Nichols over the course of his life. He finished it just before he died, but the manuscript was thought to be lost until 1984 when current OBOD Chosen Chief Philip Carr-Gomm collected the pieces and had it published.In the forward, Philip Carr-Gomm says that in The Book of Druidry, “Ross managed to combine three books in one: a history o … [Read more...]

Becoming a Druid

Do those of us who call ourselves Druids have a right to use the name? Without clearly recognized standards of preparation and achievement does the term have any meaning? Is the name so tightly attached to the priests, healers and advisors of the ancient Celtic world that it is now impossible to become a Druid?Alison Leigh Lilly of the Meadowsweet and Myrrh blog has a long essay on this topic that’s worth the time to read. It was inspired by another blog on the same topic and some Facebook c … [Read more...]

The Sacred Earth

Sermon – The Sacred Earth The Denton Unitarian Universalist Fellowship August 21, 2011Introduction One evening in a Buddhist monastery, a group of monks were cleaning up after dinner.  One of the monks was less than fully present – he seemed to just want to get finished, whether the dishes were clean or not.  Another monk noticed and said “remember – these are the Buddha’s bowls!”  But an elder monk heard this and said “no, they are not the Buddha’s bowls.  They are the Buddha’s flesh.” W … [Read more...]

The Gods Who Choose You

From Patheos, here’s an essay by Crystal Blanton titled “The Gods That Choose You.” It details her experience with Yemaya, an African deity who chose her. In Crystal’s words: One day I was walking a path that I thought led to Cerridwen and the next day there were obvious signs being presented that I was now a daughter of Yemaya and that was just the way it is. Crystal’s experience is similar to my own. I was introduced to Paganism through Wicca, but Wicca didn’t exactly grab me. When I discover … [Read more...]

The Company We Keep

It matters what company we keep.I was in the 10th grade. My English teacher had assigned a project to collect and summarize a series of newspaper and magazine articles on some theme I’ve long since forgotten. I didn’t really care for this teacher, I thought her project was more appropriate for elementary school than high school, and as a result I hadn’t started working on it with less than a week to go before it was due.The project came up in conversation at lunch one day. We talked about how … [Read more...]