August 5, 2009

Bards, Ovates, and Druids begin to gather in the Grove Pavilion before the Lughnasadh Procession. In any discussion of Druids, history is bound to come up. Unfortunately, we know very little about the ancient Druids, and much of the material we do have is from sources that are anything but objective (most notably, Julius Caesar). This much we do know: the original Druids died out with the coming of Christianity. We can trace the Druid revival back about 300 years,… Read more

August 4, 2009

John Michael Greer of AODA, Stacy of RDNA, and Isaac Bonewits of ADF. Not the best photo – the iPhone doesn’t do well in low light.The only real disappointment of the weekend was the absence of Philip Carr-Gomm, Chosen Chief of the Order of Bards, Ovates, and Druids (of which I’m a member). He has an illness in his family and didn’t feel like he could travel from England to California. I went through a similar situation when my father… Read more

August 3, 2009

I’m back from the Druid Gorsedd at Pema Osel Ling, a Buddhist retreat about an hour south of San Jose, California. It was a wonderful experience on so many levels, most of which I’ll talk about and some of which I can’t.I met sixty-something OBOD Bards, Ovates, Druids and friends. I had a small part in the main Lughnasadh ritual, a larger part in the Ovate initiation ceremony, and a supporting role in the Bardic initiation ceremony. To my shock,… Read more

July 28, 2009

The Silent Cry: Mysticism and Resistance by Dorothee SoelleI read this on vacation and I’m just now getting time to write about it. It was recommended by a commenter on a PeaceBang blog entry – I figured if a UU minister was recommending a book on mysticism, it was worth checking out. And it was – up to a point.The book begins with a wonderful quote from Rumi: “Why, when God’s world is so big, did you fall asleep in… Read more

July 26, 2009

Last night was our CUUPS Lughnasadh Circle. We kept the same basic format as we’ve done the past couple of years – a fairly simple ritual, followed by a Harvest Feast and bardic performances. This picture is Sammi, Ashley, Bonnie, Cynthia, and Michi singing “Battle Raven”, a rousing hymn to the goddess Morrigan. I came back from vacation to a zoo at work – too few people trying to do too much with too many people yelling that it’s not… Read more

July 22, 2009

I don’t rate a BlackBerry at work – for which I am thankful. When I leave work I like to forget about work. But I had been wanting a smart phone for quite some time. I’m very dependent on e-mail for CUUPS and church work, and I like being able to look up something on the internet whenever I think about it. Plus any more it seems like everyone and their cat has a smart phone of one description or… Read more

July 19, 2009

Back in January, I wrote about a prophetic dream I had, and how I was going to have to tell my evangelical Christian friends that their new daughter is going to be (as I put it at the time) “psychically gifted, destined to be a seer and a mystic, and a great source of consternation for her parents.”While they live in Pueblo (which is nowhere close to Durango), it so happened that they were in Albuquerque the day we flew… Read more

July 18, 2009

Soda CanyonI went to Mesa Verde hoping – expecting – to have a spiritual experience of one variety or another. As those of you who’ve been reading this blog know, the last few months have been rather unsettled for me. Not necessarily bad, just unsettled – like I need to be doing something, but I don’t know exactly what, or why, or how. I was hoping to find some sort of guidance, clarity, enlightenment – pick your term.A Native American… Read more

July 18, 2009

This trip was conceived when I asked Cynthia for a recommendation for an ancient site to visit in the United States. She made several recommendations, but Mesa Verde was her first, and it fit in well with other things to see and do on a trip that was part R&R; and part pilgrimage.This is Mesa Verde as seen from US highway 160.Far View House, one of the earlier structures, built before the famous cliff dwellings. This is a distant view… Read more

July 17, 2009

There could be nothing remotely spiritual about a mining town, right? Or about a coal-fired smoke-spewing steam train? Maybe if you’re into country music?Let’s start with the train. As a feat of engineering, the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad is just as impressive as the brick structures built by the ancestral Puebloans. No earthmoving equipment, no helicopters, just men and mules and dynamite.Here’s Silverton. Yeah, it’s turned from a mining town into a cheesy tourist town, but it’s still… Read more

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