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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

So, the cat died.

Me, I'm not an Afterlife person. I think that when the breath is gone, we go back into the grand dance of everything, the eternal sabbat of the atoms. And this seems to me both beautiful and good.

But as I move through a house newly filled with absences, stillnesses where I expect movement, it somehow consoles me to think of the Antlered sitting cross-legged with all the animals around Him, and old Mr. Rudycat snugged up in His lap. Or, more likely, draped around His neck and across His shoulders like a black-and-white fur collar, but with a pink nose. And probably switching Him in the face with a long, black tail from time to time.

Yep, that's the Rude all right.

Emily was the first kid to grow up in the local pagan community, and you couldn't help but feel a sense of investment in her. Smart, talented, charismatic, it was evident to everyone that she was going to be High Priestess of Minnesota some day, if not the first pagan president. When she died unexpectedly at 21, her death shook us all.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    Apparently there is something like nine times as much to do and explore in the spirit as there is physically, but without the burd
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    In the greater scheme of things, the loss of a pet seems a small grief, but it's a grief nonetheless. Thanks, Mark.
  • Mark Green
    Mark Green says #
    Beautifully said. As a fellow atheist Pagan, I like the framing and I'm sorry for your loss.
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    I once read that we lay down our path through the afterlife in the dreams we have when we are asleep. That we know the dead live
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    Oh gods. You mean the scheduling crunch doesn't let up after death?
Pagan News Beagle: Airy Monday, September 14

Hayao Miyazaki opens a nature sanctuary for children. A colorful comic deconstructs the magical girl genre made famous by Sailor Moon. And one woman learn how to balance femininity and feminism through tabletop gaming. Welcome to Airy Monday, our weekly take on news about magic and religion in popular culture. All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!

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SOUL MATE or TWIN SOUL - Promote Loving Contact and Togetherness

This week we're going to talk about Soul Mate or Twin Soul crystals. Let me start with the caveat that just as there are differing opinions on the description of a human soul mate/twin soul, there is also a lot of controversy about what constitutes a Soul Mate or Twin Soul crystal. These twinned crystals are sometimes also referred to as Tantric Twins or Twin Flames. My tendency is to keep naming as uncomplicated as possible, so I choose not to use the names Tantric Twin or Twin Flame and simplify it to just "Twin Soul" or even just "Twin".

As usual, what I am presenting here is my take on the subject of twinned crystals, you may have learned differently, or the people or books from which you learned may have assigned subtle differences and complex rules to the names, or you  simply may have a different opinion on the matter entirely for other reasons, and that is perfectly okay! What is important is the energy which these twinned crystals present and your personal relationship to the type of crystal named as such. Again, it is my desire to make learning about the Crystal People as uncomplicated as possible to make this sometimes convoluted topic less burdensome and more accessible to everyone. Back to topic, then!

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Time-Policing Our Holidays: Or, Why Americans on Social Media Are Hating On Pumpkin Spice

Pumpkin spice.

1. What is it?

A mix of spices used in autumn harvest celebration foods, including pumpkin pie, apple pie, apple pastry, apple crisp, squash pie, pear crisp, and things that are supposed to taste like them, for example, spiced cider, spiced hard cider, spiced coffee, spiced wine, spiced mead, and spiced ice cream.

The basic spices are:
(allspice, sometimes)
(cardamom, sometimes)

So, for those of you outside the USA, it's basically the same spices as Lebkuchengewürz except without the coriander and star anise. When one sees a Facebook meme mocking pumpkin spice that starts with "white girls be like" they are referring to the fact that this holiday spice mixture is similar to a German holiday spice mixture. The idea behind those memes is that only Germanic descended people go nuts over this flavor, but that's really not true. All kinds of Americans like pumpkin pie and apple pie.

2. Why is it a seasonal flavor?

It's used to flavor things made from seasonal produce like pumpkins and apples. The harvest seasons for pumpkins, squashes, apples, pears, and so forth in the USA extend from August to December, since different vegetables and fruits come on at different times and the USA is so large that it has many different climates with different dates of the onset of frost.

3. Why are people mocking it?

Americans have been conditioned to time-police our holidays by observing the practice of our large corporations to start selling holiday related merchandise while another holiday is still coming up (for example, putting out Christmas decorations before Halloween), and in the case of Christmas, the practice of piping holiday music into the stores starting so early that it is nearly universally acknowledged that it reaches homicidal levels of annoying by the time the actual holiday rolls around. Americans think September is too early to start selling harvest celebration flavors. The people are attempting to time-police our corporations over it and shame each other into not supporting the practice by purchasing the product too early. The purpose of this social shaming is to cause the public to wait to make holiday purchases until the correct holiday season, and thus to cause market pressure to influence corporations to wait to attempt to sell holiday products until the correct holiday season.

4. Why are people saying it's "too early"?

To understand why Americans think selling a harvest celebration flavor almost precisely on the date of the autumnal equinox is "too early" one must first realize that the USA has an official national holiday to celebrate harvest in November, Thanksgiving. It's not celebrated in other countries at all, but it's actually our biggest national holiday -- at least for adults. Kids get a week off for Christmas and Easter, but adults only get 1 day for those if they work at a place that closes for national holidays, or if they work at a place where they can request religious holidays off and have requested the Christian set of holidays, but we get two days for Thanksgiving, a Thursday and a Friday, making for a 4 day weekend for those who get weekends off. It's the only national holiday that's more than one day.

5. Where can I learn more?

To read more about the origin, functions, importance, and modern practices surrounding Thanksgiving, and other holidays celebrated in the USA, see my book American Celebration.

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Recent comment in this post - Show all comments
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    The local Barnes & Noble had pumpkin spice muffins this Saturday. They even had free samples to entice people to buy them. I had

Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs

As the last of the summer fades away I always look forward to the autumn ahead as a time of real sensual delight. In this the first of a series of blogs from me celebrating my favourite season I look at how to make it relevant to you, no matter where you live, and whatever your spiritual path.   

Autumn is a time of rich abundance. The freshening air after a long summer can reinvigorate us, and encourage a more wistful, reflective state of mind that can help us develop our awareness to a deeper level. The scents of wood smoke and ripe apples waft over the countryside. The leaves begin to turn from green to golden, and the berries ripen on the branches in purples and scarlet making this a delicious, sensual time of year. A good opportunity to tune in to our wisdom of our bodies.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Creating with Purpose - Fall Harvest

Autumn brings cooler weather, trees changing colors and harvest time.  Red tomatoes, green cucumbers, apples, potatoes, onions and so much more is being harvested from gardens, orchards and farms.  The local farmers markets are flooded with garden produce. 

A tradition for my family, my middle daughter, Vicki, mom (Joan) and one of my sisters (Alicia) and I travel west of our home in late September or early October to the apple orchards near Gays Mills.  We always make a day of it since it is a couple hours drive.  So we pile into a vehicle with a cooler of sandwich fixings, bottled water and anticipation for the outing. Usually the morning starts cool and crisp with the bite of early frost in the misty morning air.

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b2ap3_thumbnail_dream-of-earth.jpgWhat dreams and great ideas do you have you hidden away in various corners of your mind — the ones you drag out occasionally like a child’s comfort blanket to sooth your soul? Then you fold them up in the morning and put them away, because you’re too afraid, or too busy, or too full of doubt to actually translate those dreams into accomplishments.  You know the dreams I’m talking about — we all have them. This is a good month to pick one of them — one that feeds your soul — and make it happen.

The New Moon in Virgo this year occurs at 2:41 am on Sunday, September 13th (NOTE: All times are EDT. Find the chart here).  This New Moon is an eclipse, which means this chart will continue to resonate in the zeitgeist for about 6 months. Let’s look at some of the big issues that will be brought to our attention over the next few months.

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