June 2, 2019

But my Paganism is very much aligned with these words of Walt Whitman, from the preface of Leaves Of Grass: “There will soon be no more priests. Their work is done….A superior breed shall take their place … the gangs of kosmos and prophets en masse shall take their place.” Read more

May 30, 2019

May 31, 2019 marks the 200th anniversary of Whitman’s birth. It seems appropriate to reflect on his legacy. There is a direct chain of inspiration from Whitman to the important occultist and Pagan figures Aleister Crowley, Dion Fortune, and Gerald Gardner, via the English poet Algernon Charles Swinburne. Read more

May 16, 2019

What is special about propositions is that they are true or false no matter who utters them. We can use the methods of reason to investigate the truth or falsity of propositions regardless of our social status, regardless of race or class or gender or ethnicity or what pack you belong to. But the degradation of contemporary political discourse is demonstrated by how often someone asserting a proposition is met not with a debate about the proposition, but with accusations of the form “that’s just what members of so-and-so group say!” Read more

May 4, 2019

The beautiful and terrible (in the sense of intense, formidable, powerful, going back to a Proto-Indo-European root meaning "to tremble") world keeps on turning, "and everything she touches, changes", as the chant goes. Read more

April 24, 2019

Festival season is coming! And I’d like to invite you to two events where I’ll be presenting this summer. The Free Spirit Gathering — FSG — has been my “home event” on the Pagan festival circuit since 1998. I’ve played a variety of roles, from will-work-for-food kitchen help to performing musician to (for my sins) President of the non-profit that puts it on. This year, though, I get to do something new. Two things new, actually: I’m on the bill… Read more

April 13, 2019

Travel gives you an opportunity to raise the magickal energy, but you have to take the opportunity and set the intent to direct it, to make meaningful choices. Read more

April 10, 2019

As I write this I am in that most liminal of places, in transit between one continent and another, between heaven and earth: in an Air Canada 777 headed for Sydney, Australia, where I’ll be judging a karate tournament this weekend. Sometime while I tried to sleep, we crossed the Equator, my first time in the Southern hemisphere. Read more

March 28, 2019

The idea that one reaches mastery and then stops learning and starts teaching might be useful in some types of mythological narrative where the focus is on the novice student’s journey. But as a guide to one’s own personal development — in the martial arts, in magic, in one’s profession, whatever — it is sorely lacking. Read more

March 15, 2019

"Priest" can be a specific term referring to Catholic religious figures but it also has a general meaning. The same is true of "shaman" — and that general meaning is quite different from "priest". A shaman and a priest do not fill the same roles. Read more

February 28, 2019

The exploits of superheroes can inspire the merely mortal citizens of their comic book and movie worlds to be better, braver, and more empathetic. But more than that: their power is such that they can reach out from those fictional universes into ours, and inspire us in measurable ways. Read more

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