A Samhain Dream

A very close friend of mine once shared a beautiful dream that she had, a dream that we both felt was more than just an ordinary one. She was an immensely devout devotee of Loki.  He was her sustenance, the witness to her life, her God, her Lord, her deepest love. Throughout her life, He guided and cared for her in a way that she felt palpably all the way to the end of her life. I was recently looking over some letters that she had sent me, for we often exchanged old-fashioned correspondence, … [Read more...]

Parting the Veil

I recently discovered that my grandmother's best friend died after a long illness that had left her incapacitated. Mary and my grandma had been through everything under the sun together. Leaving Cuba, making a new life in the US, marital dramas, you name it...these women stuck together like glue and were closer than family. After my grandmother died in 1980, Mary continued to be an important presence in our lives. In crisis times, she was the go-to woman with her incredible skill and accuracy in … [Read more...]

The Last Great Initiation

I am not sure exactly how it happened, I don’t even remember talking about it before my name was listed, but with the recent death of a good friend of mine I found my name listed as the gravesite Officiating Minister. When I first began Seeking with a Coven many years ago I had never dreamed that one day I would be asked to perform the equivalent of last rites for a dear friend, student, and initiate; I am honored to have done so. I am ordained and have been elevated to third degree within … [Read more...]

What Do I Really Think Happens When I Die?

Patheos' new What Do I Really Believe? series is about what we feel is true in our heart and soul, which may conform to our faith tradition's beliefs or not. Only so many Pagan responses made it to the homepage but we received some really fabulous ones. Instructions on how to respond to the next question are at the bottom of this post. What really happens when we die? Your best friend is crushed when his 10-year-old son dies of cancer. He tells you that he is comforted, at least, that one day … [Read more...]

A Challenge For October

In a few days, September will be over and we will have entered the month of Samhain, the month in which some of us celebrate Winter Nights, the month immediately preceding the Day of the Dead, the month which is, in so much of Paganism given over to honoring the ancestors. I think this is good. Granted, I think it is even better to honor the ancestors consistently throughout the year but I am glad we have a holy tide centering around celebrating those who came before us. It’s all too easy to … [Read more...]

Remembering 9/11

(Warning: some of the descriptions below are graphic and may be disturbing for some readers.) It’s the aftermath of 9/11 I remember the most: people wandering like ghosts through silent streets for days after the towers fell; the echoing silence everywhere, a silence so profound it was nearly palpable; the scorched and smoky smell that permeated everyplace Downtown, that made the heart jump and the throat close up with remembered horror; the open-hearted camaraderie that reached across … [Read more...]

Agora: A New Film In The Pagan Cinematic Pantheon

I think I've mentioned before that I'm not a weeper. I can squeeze out a tear, maybe two in a sad movie, but crying isn't something I do often or easily. I wept softly all through Agora. *There may be spoilers ahead.* I'd been waiting to see Agora for months. Finally the little art-house cinema in midtown decided to show it for a week, and some friends of mine decided to make an urban adventure of it. The nature of our adventure actually added to the experience of seeing the film. We first … [Read more...]

Death-Midwife: PSG Interview with Nora Cedarwind Young

Before Pagan Spirit Gathering I had never heard of a death-midwife but it makes perfect sense. Midwives were healers of body and spirit, they guided people through the transition of birth, death and even marriage by matchmaking. While birth midwives have been making a comeback since the 1970's, midwives who help families with the transition of death are still uncommon. Along with sharing her stories and thoughts about PSG, Nora Cedarwind Young told us about death-midwives: what they do and how … [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, … [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...]


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X