Thursday, April 10, 2014

When Bad Things Happen

I woke up yesterday to a message on my phone from CNN: someone went on a stabbing spree in a high school near Pittsburgh.  My heart dropped.  Not again.

As details emerged, I was heartbroken at the number of people hurt.  Twenty one children and adults.  Hurt, not killed.  Thank the Goddess for small miracles.  But they aren't out of danger yet.  There is healing to be done, both physically and mentally.  And probably spiritually.  A whole community is in disarray.  But one question lingers.  Why?

We see this happening around the country.  A kid, barely more than a child, has something go very wrong in his life.  Maybe he is sent to the principal's office and that means a beating at home, or maybe it means no more xbox.  Who knows.  But something goes wrong.  He is picked on, bullied until he cracks.  He doesn't feel accepted.  His girlfriend breaks up with him.  It's happening more and more.  And then there's that question.  Why?

What has changed in society that is causing both kids and adults to think their only way to get rid of the pain is to hurt others?  Why are we seeing this so much more than we did even 20 years ago?

We have.  We changed.  We are online, keyed in, always connected.  But not to each other.  We don't have dinner with our kids and sit down to talk about our days.  We don't support each other anymore, talking through the bad moments, boosting self confidence and showing compassion.  We don't stop to help strangers, check on our neighbors, and say a friendly "hello" when we pass on the streets.  

We ignore, turn away, and find ways to plug in so we don't connect to each other.  We have no compassion for someone else in danger.  We don't love anyone but the person in our bed, sometimes, and the dead presidents in our wallets.  

And until we reach out to someone, let them know that someone cares, that they don't have to do anything rash, these horrible acts of senseless violence will continue.  We will continue to raise our children with no compassion.  They won't know how to make friends, how to care about someone else, and how to say, "Hey man, are you ok?  Let's talk about it."  

Take a moment today to reach out to someone that had a bad day.  Maybe someone you know is hurting or hasn't had a hug in a while.  Find your compassion and we find a solution.  

Sunday, April 6, 2014

The Saga Continues

There is a huge uproar now over the Frosts attending and participating in Pagan festivals, both in Florida and in Michigan.  My thoughts on this are many.

First of all, I'm disappointed that any festival organizers would ask them to participate.  That they would even THINK it was ok to ask them to come and teach a group of Pagans, especially at FAMILY events.  It makes me question the ethics and decision-making abilities of the organizers.

Secondly, I have seen people defending the Frosts, saying that they are fantastic people.  Ok, they may be, but the fact remains, they advocated child molestation under the guise of Paganism.  That's not ok with me.  That's not ok with a lot of people.  Not only did they advocate and publish this information, they also have not renounced it.  Even years later, they stand by their statements in their books.  I cannot comprehend how that even could be considered ethical in the Pagan community.

Now, we look at all the events, how they were forced out of the Florida event by someone talking to the event location, and how they bowed out of the Michigan event without any decision from the organizers.  I'm distraught that the organizers were not forthright and just asked them not to come.  That it had to be the Pagan community that forced the issue and took matters into their own hands.  It saddens me that for a community that is so open and loving, that we allow someone or a group of people into our midst that can cause so much damage.  The damage is not only internal, though, but also, it shows the outside world that we allow these types of people in our lives and not only welcome them, but applaud them as elders and teachers.

It's time we just say no.  No child molesters.  No advocates of such practices.  No predators.  Just NO!

Saturday, April 5, 2014

A Visit from the Horned God

I live on a little piece of land in a midwest city.  We have a little creek running through the back of the property, as well as woods all around us.  It's a wonderful way to live, in the city but in the woods.

Every Spring, and sometimes in the Winter, we have a herd of deer that wander through the yard looking for goodies to eat.  They were late this year, only showing up in the past week or so, but unlike other years, they have shown up in numbers.  I counted ten of the great beasts on the first day.  They came across the yard, pausing to look up into the great big window we were watching from.  It's hard to tell, but I'm pretty sure there were at least two bucks in the group.  One of them had a lame back leg, like he was hit by a car and was nursing his leg back to health.  He was eating well, and there wasn't a noticeable bone protruding to get infected, so I just let him go for now.  I'll continue to watch for him and pray to Brighid for his healing.

I love communing with Cernunnos, and it is amazing to have Him walk through the yard, casually taking His time and looking up at the window, letting us know that He sees us.  I had just been calling to Him, asking for his presence and energy around my home.  I always feel protected and energized when He's around.

May Cernunnos find his way into your life and bring his masculine energy with him to guard and protect you!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014


When I came out as a Pagan and started networking, people started talking to me about PST - Pagan Standard Time.  What is it and why do we have it?  Pagan Standard Time is that half an hour after an event is supposed to start that people keep filtering in to the space.  To me, it's an excuse to be late and no one to care.

I'm a pretty timely person.  I like to be on time or just a little bit early.  I hate it when people come in late and I'm known to start events that I'm running right on time and not let people in unless they have made arrangements beforehand.  Yes, I'm that much of a bitch sometimes.  If you can't respect the time I put into creating the event, running the event, and all the physical prep work, especially when it's a ritual or other solemn occasion, I'm probably not going to be pleased.  Now, if you are traveling from far away, you get a little leeway.  There are exceptions.

It also upsets me if an organizer is constantly late.  I have a lot of things going on in my life: kids, work, studies, school, running a household and a large social group.  I respect you and your time.  Please respect mine.

I'm not nearly as militant when it comes to social events.  Parties, gatherings, and coffee nights are very loose and people come and go.  It's totally cool to come late or early when it's purely social.

But I really think we need to do away with PST for core rituals and similar events.  It's about respect.  I respect you, you respect me.  We'll get along just fine.

Monday, March 31, 2014

A Lot of Talk, But What Action?

I'm going to talk about something that's been in the news and blogs for the last week or so. Someone that was trusted, a musician, and a Pagan, is accused of possessing child pornography. Pretty hefty charges. And from everything I've been seeing around the web, apparently people felt he was a little creepy, but really didn't do anything about it.

Let that sink in a minute. People around him knew something was off, but did nothing.

Now, I'm NOT blaming or pointing fingers at anyone. But I'm confused how anyone can be around someone, feeling that creep feeling, and not do anything. This goes for mundane and magickal life. People like to give others, especially prominent people, the benefit of a doubt. I think we need to stop and think about that for a while.

As Pagans, we are pretty open, both with our energy and our lives. Many of us live with a village mentality when going out with other Pagans. Hell, many of us live with a village mentality when we go out with our kids, period. We need to be more cautious and speak up when something doesn't feel right. If it's a person in charge, right down to a new person...we HAVE to speak up. As a Pagan community, we are not immune to predators. But we are a bit lax in doing anything about it.

That being said, we have had people in our local community that have had poor behavior. One was found creeping around children and harassing females. People spoke up and the elders dealt with the issue. Our local community (full disclosure: I'm an elder in it) does a good job in taking care of problems when they arise, from our members speaking up to action being taken. It's not an easy task, and you have to weed out the occasional "we don't like person x so we are going to make trouble for her/him" from the real threats, but sitting back and waiting for something to happen isn't an option. We need better methods for dealing with this in larger crowds, and we definitely need to be aware that we as a Pagan population are not immune.

It's time to stand up. We can't be silent any longer.

Monday, July 30, 2012

The Awe of Children

Have you ever watched a child with a new toy, or in a new cool place, like the zoo? The look of amazement as he sees a giraffe for the first time, or the way she figures out how the toy works, like it's a miracle is what I'm talking about as 'awe'. There is a moment that new concept filters to their fresh mind, when their eyes sparkle at the wonderment of something.
That moment, that awe, is what we, as adults, have lost. We act like we've seen it all. Or we are cynical that anything can truly be magical. At some point in our lives, someone said "Grow up. Stop acting like a child!" When did that come to mean that we need to stop looking around us and noticing the magick that is everywhere? When my son was about four, we moved into a smaller house, with a wild yard. There were large trees, landscaping, and wildlife, as it was on the edge of town. One day, I was weeding in a flower bed and noticed movement in a Japanese maple tree. Upon inspecting it, I found a beautiful mantis crawling up the leaves. I called to my son, who came out to look at what I had coaxed onto a stick. The look of awe on his face as he watched it crawl and move, turning it's head, took my breath away.
We need to find that amazement in the things around us again, and find why those things are sacred. It fills the heart, lightens the soul, and makes us remember what is truly important.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Amazing Progress!

To anyone that knows me, they know I've fallen out of my energy work, becoming quite depressed in recent weeks. Through the help of my circle, I've gotten back on my feet, and through our book discussion group, found my way back to my energy work.

We are currently working on Kate West's The Real Witches' Craft. It's a great '101' book, but awesome for getting your energy balanced and back where it should be. I had not realized how far out of whack mine truly was.

Chapter 2, Practical Work 7 requires you to create a lunar diary, noting things that you notice about the moon and how you feel. I purchased a journal specifically for this purpose tonight, and started working on journalling. I'm hoping to see patterns emerge in my thoughts during each quarter. That might help me find ways to cope that I hadn't thought about, or at least anticipate the level of energy I might have coming up. I'm looking forward to filling up each page.

What books are you reading out there? I'm always looking for a good read, whether it is fiction or a working Witchy book.

Is anyone out there going to Paganicon in March? Minneapolis is going to be the place to be, that's for sure. There's even a Faerie Ball on Saturday night. I've been told I'm going, even though I'm not sure I want to. I'm more a wallflower lately, but I'm sure it will be a good time. If you're going to be there, let me know! I am caravaning up with 12 of my friends from our circle. It's bound be fun!

Bright Blessings!

~ Lina