Land Spirits, Ancestors and Gods, Oh My!

Whenever anyone asks me about connecting with Deities, I tell them that the first thing they should do is get their spiritual house in order. A lot of people feel pulled into Deity work right away, when the first thing they should be focusing on is developing a strong relationship with their ancestors and with the spirits of the land on which they live. This is important because, if something goes amiss with your first forays into working with the Gods and Goddesses, having a strong ancestral … [Read more...]

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Journeying to the Otherland: A Meditation Practice

Meditation often popularly thought of as zen meditation, with a clear blank mind. That's really only one sort of meditation. I'd like to share a meditation I have used to connect with my Gods, ancestors and spirits.Journeying is somewhat shamanic. It is basically the practice of intentionally sending your consciousness from this land and into the Otherland. There are a lot of metaphysical explanations for how this works and why, but as I get older I find the practice itself is far more … [Read more...]

The Shunned Transformation

Will you come with me and watch part of a sacred transformation that most of us close our eyes to and avoid?  It won't be comfortable for you and it certainly wasn't for me.   It's not like many of the other joyous Rites of Passage that Pagans throw themselves into with wild abandon.  It’s raw and painful and normally very private, but it shouldn't be shunned like some shameful secret.  I'm not sharing this to shock or repulse or thrill.  I'm sharing it in honor of my grandmother, Selma, who was … [Read more...]

A Ritual to Connect With Your Ancestors

Coming from a family of mediums, some of my earliest ritual memories have to do with connecting with and honoring my ancestors. Since our beloved dead are too often overlooked except for Samhain, I thought I'd share a fairly simple ritual aimed at creating an ancestor altar and establishing contact with deceased relatives. My hope is that this will inspire year-round devotion. This can be done individually oe with other family members and can be adapted to suit a variety of paths.All that you … [Read more...]

Memorial

This isn't going to be a very uplifting Memorial Day post. Nor is it very Pagan, except perhaps in the way that I view collective responsibility and the necessity to uphold it.This time last year, we had just found out that my brother, a Vietnam veteran, had liver cancer. He hadn't been getting regular screenings from the VA even though he had been exposed to Agent Orange and should have been considered high-risk. They didn't tell him that. It was just the last in a myriad of ways that the … [Read more...]

Wyrd Designs – Musings on Memorial Day

For those of us who are so lucky, we have a lovely three-day weekend before us. Memorial Day is far more than an occasion to exercise your checkbook (or should I say debit card swipe) in pursuit of retail bargains. Rather it is a holiday rooted in American history that has shifted overtime in the American consciousness, and yet it is also a holiday that many in the Northern Tradition have taken to claim as their own.Memorial Day is a U.S. national holiday. The official birthplace of Memorial … [Read more...]

Remembering Veterans, Remembering My Father

Americans are preparing to celebrate Memorial Day, a day to remember those who have given their lives in the US armed forces. Though its origins date back to 1868, it wasn’t declared a National Holiday until Congress passed the National Holiday Act in 1971.If you’ve never seen a military cemetery around Memorial Day, it’s a very moving event. I had the opportunity to be in Luxembourg for Memorial Day weekend many years ago. I was able to visit the Luxembourg American Cemetery and Memorial, a mi … [Read more...]


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