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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
A Dog Named Yahweh

Back in the 80s, a friend was thinking about getting a new dog. She planned to name him Yahweh.

People, of course, name their pets for gods all the time. (Whether or not this is a good idea lies outside the parameters of this post.) Still, naming your dog Yahweh seems a little...well, let me at least say that I wouldn't do it. Do you really want to use someone that you love to even a score?

For this was the Reagan Era, and the Age of the Culture Wars. The danger of a full-blown theocracy in the US seemed like a very real possibility at the time. (The Kreesh-chun Reich certainly seemed to think so.) So you did what you could to strike a blow—even a symbolic one—against the theocrats and their triumphalist ways.

One can, of course, readily appreciate the idea's humorous potential.

"Yahweh bit me!"

“Bad Yahweh! Bad boy!”

“Yahweh really stinks; I'm afraid he needs another bath.”

“Oh no, Yahweh peed on the carpet again.”

Still, when it comes to Yahwehs, one has to admit that one—even one that only exists in people's heads—is bad enough.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    I think of Romero's Dawn of the Dead, with the shopping mall zombies, the zombie Hare Krishna and the zombie nun among them. Satir
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    I remember the 80's too well. Ronald Reagan Antichrist, Nancy Reagan the Scarlet Woman, Milton Freedman the False Prophet. I had
Lovingkindness Meditation: Conjuring Contentment

If you had a rough day at work, your inner critic was overactive or are just feeling a little down, try this as lovingkindness meditation.. It can be difficult cultivate self-love but it is one of the most important things you can do for yourself. The very peacefulness you create with this ritual, you can also send to another,  Begin by sitting quietly, taking relaxed, slow, deep breaths and wishing yourself happiness. After sitting quietly begin to speak this mantra aloud::

May I be happy.

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs

"Just breathe"

Such a simple statement. A reminder to just breathe. Why do we say that? Does it really help?

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Autumn is here and winter will be here soon... As the wheel turns its good too to set our energetic houses in order, in preparation for the new season. Equally there are times in life when the next stage, the next move to make in life is unclear. Stress, worry, negative energy can come into our lives in a variety of ways for a variety of reasons, and sometimes the only thing to do is be prepared to wade through some deep dark waters for a while- or even dive deeper trusting in the journey that in time you will come through to easier times. However, while struggle, and even a lack of clarity is all part of the rhythm of life from time to time, there are always pro-active things that can be done to help re-set and re-connect with the navigating forces in our lives once more. Whether its illness, depression, money worries, politics or a whole host of other challenges, there is always something we can do, to just make a small shift, that may set up some positive ripples in our energy.

 

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“The Only God Worth Worshiping is the Great Mother, Source of All Life”

You know the feeling: the words leap up off the page and seize you with such force that you know you're never going to forget them.

Years ago, I was reading an article about German Expressionist painter Paula Modersohn-Becker (1876-1907).

“The only god worth worshiping is the Great Mother, Source of all Life,” she was quoted as saying.

(I should mention that I've since tried to track down this quotation, so far unsuccessfully; but since her words smote themselves into my heart at the time, I'm willing to trust my memory on this one.)

To look at her paintings, you could certainly believe that she would say such a thing. Her secular madonnas, many of them self-portraits, radiate a serene and luminous sanctity of their own.

***

The wand beeps over my breastbone. With a jerk of his head, the TSA guy indicates: Show.

By her chain, I pull the little silver goddess up out of my shirt.

“Who's that?” he asks, surprised.

(Interesting: not "what?" but "who?")

“The Great Mother, Source of All Life,” I tell him. Then I hear myself adding: “I have it on good authority that She's the only god worth worshiping.”

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Procession of the Equinoxes, or: Some of Our Best Rituals Are Processions

For far too long now, contemporary pagan ritual has been imprisoned in the magic circle. There's more, far more, to liturgy than Summoning, Stirring, and Pointing Knives At.

Consider, for example, the common Procession.

When I'm teaching the Art of Ritual, I generally draw on the Procession as an example of a successful ritual-form that doesn't require a magic circle.

As a ritual, a Procession has a lot going for it.

  • It's something that we do together.
  • It's self-explanatory.
  • Everyone already knows what to do without having to be told: the ritual itself leads us (literally) in the direction that we need to go.
  • It has a single focus and a clear goal.
  • It felicitously combines formality and informality.
  • Without words, it says: Something non-ordinary, something significant, is happening here.
  • In it, we engage our environment in a sacred way.

(Note that these same criteria characterize virtually all good ritual, not just Processions.)

I often cite the Procession as an example of ritual that can't go wrong. But at one workshop a woman spoke up, a priestess well-known in her area.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    If I'm remembering my archeology correctly both Stonehenge and Woodhenge had processionals to walk on before getting to the circle
  • Chris Sherbak
    Chris Sherbak says #
    I love processing. The ADF Core Order has a procession and I normally include it in our Grove rites. Coming from LA, where you had
Eco Mindfulness: A Simple Grounding Ritual

Grounding is the technique for centering you within your being, getting into your body and out of your head. Grounding is how we reconnect and rebalance ourselves though the power of the element of earth. This is the simplest of rituals; one you can do every day of your life. As you walk, take the time to really see what is in your path. For example, my friend Louise takes a bag with her and picks up every piece of garbage in her path. She inspired me to do the same  She does this as an act of love for the Earth. During the ten years she has practiced this ritual, she has probably turned a mountain of garbage into recycled glass, paper, and plastic. Eileen is very grounded. She is also a happy person who exudes and shares joy to all in her path.

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