Pregnancy, Childbirth, and your Ancestors

Idesa

by Molly KhanIt wasn't until I became pregnant with my third child that I began to consider the more spiritual aspects of childbirth.  It helped that around that time I was becoming more involved in and more serious about my Paganism, delving beyond High Day and Full Moon observances and creating a personal, daily practice.  Pregnancy, and parenting my other two children, was a huge part of my life, and so it naturally figured largely in the deities I connected to and the practice I was d … [Read more...]

Top 10 Posts of 2013

intuition

This is an entirely unsystematic, unscientific, personally biased list of my top 10 favorite Pagan Families posts from 2013. It's obviously not all the good posts, or even all the great posts. It's not necessarily the most read or shared or commented on posts either. But I tried to include posts from all our regular (and irregular) contributors, and to represent the range of topics we now cover. From pregnancy to postpartum, from sex education to adoption, from spiritual practice with toddlers … [Read more...]

Inhabited by the Divine: Cut, Stapled and Mended

Recently I found myself totally absorbed by Roanna Rosewood’s birth memoir: Cut, Stapled, and Mended. In an overlap with my interests that I didn't anticipate, I discovered that in many ways Rosewood’s book is about a journey to the sacred feminine within herself. This thread of her discovery of the larger forces of what it means to be female that runs throughout the book and I was especially interested by several mentions of a sense of being inhabited by the Divine, the Sacred Feminine. Writing … [Read more...]

Review: Birth, Breath & Death: Meditations on Motherhood, Chaplaincy, and Life as a Doula

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Reading Birth, Breath & Death makes me want to hold my family close and also hold my heart open to strangers. And it makes me wish that Amy Wright Glenn had written more.Glenn, who's been a philosophy teacher, birth doula, and hospital chaplain, meditates thoughtfully on birth and death and the body-spirit through-line of breath that connects them both. She observes, "So many women never witness childbirth until it is directly upon them, until they themselves are in labor. Death, like … [Read more...]

October Link Round-Up: Blessings, births, babies, and more

Spiritual Pregnancy

Observances and Events October was a busy month around here! We celebrated National Midwifery Week & International Babywearing Week as well as observing Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day. This year's Spirit Babies ceremony was announced: This year, the Spirit Babies ceremony will be at the Mudd Building, Room 100 of the Pacific School of Religion at 1798 Scenic Avenue in Berkeley on Sunday 12/15 from 1-2pm. This is an interfaith service for people to come together to remember, … [Read more...]

Hollekreisch: Honoring Childbirth

October 2013 130

In one of my history classes at Ocean Seminary College, I read an article called Holle's Cry: Unearthing a Birth Goddess in a German Jewish Naming Ceremony by Jill  Hammer. The article addresses the merging of a Jewish naming ritual with the childbirth-celebrating ceremonies of the early Germanic goddess Holle and her later folk image, Frau Holle. Since my background is in birth education and activism, of course I was very interested and intrigued by Hammer’s article about Holle and the ritual as … [Read more...]

Wednesday Wisdom: On our knees

By Rosser1954 Roger Griffith (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons

The Wednesday Wisdom series returns! A weekly Wednesday Wisdom post -- two or three quotes on a theme related to Paganism and childbearing, inviting us to meditate.  This week birth brings us to our knees. “Rigid plans work best if you’re building a skyscraper; with something as mysteriously human as giving birth, it’s best, both literally and figuratively, to keep your knees bent.” –Mark Sloan, MD (Birth Day)   "Birth is not an event; it's a series of sophisticated biological processes.. … [Read more...]

Midwives Make a Difference

NMW2013_BustMyth

Not only is this International Babywearing Week, it's also National Midwifery Week! Both of these weeks of education and celebration are something Pagans can get behind.We don't have a whole lot of social scientific data about what Pagans want, choose, or experience in birthing, but we do know that they favor midwifery care. According to Kimberly Hedrick's Pagan Health Survey, "The majority of Pagans would opt for natural childbirth attended by a midwife, with less than 20% saying they would … [Read more...]


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