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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in sacred space
Predators, Sacred Space and a Call to Maturity

How do we want to present ourselves to the world? How does the world at large view the Pagan community, and are we happy with the way people see us?

These questions have circulating for years, and often the answer is something like, “Why should we care what they think? All they’re going to do is judge us anyway - and they’ve already made up their minds.”

But not every mind is made up. In fact, there’s more openness toward Paganism and other paths outside the Judeo-Christian framework than ever before. This is why it’s crucial that we step up to the plate and shape the discussion to the extent we can. If we refuse to do so, we can rest assured that those who already have made up their minds will shape it for us … and we won’t like the distorted picture they’re sure to paint.

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
Virtual Sacred Space

Today I facilitated my third virtual New Moon Intention Circle and again finished amazed by the energy that I experienced. Though my only interaction with my circle sisters was via the intentions they emailed me, written chat before the call and interactions via Facebook-- I felt their presence with me as I created the sacred space for the call. I felt them with every deep breath in the grounding visualization. I felt them with me as I welcomed the directions, elements, ancestors, goddesses and guardians. I felt them casting the circle with me as I repeated three times, “We have cast this circle with love and light. Only that which benefits us may enter.” I especially felt them with me while I read aloud their powerfully heart and spirit centered intentions.

 

It is so affirming to hear from my sisters after the call telling me how spiritual it was or how they felt the sacred space even though they could only hear my voice. It supports me in recognizing that sacred space is truly an act supported by your words and energy. The physical is not always necessary. Ah the power and connection available through just a phone call!

 

With this in mind, I will continue holding my virtual New Moon Intention Circles-- giving that gift to my sisters every New Moon. Though it’s more accurate to say that it is a gift they give me! As much as I create sacred space for myself by setting up my altar, calling in the energy and stating my intention-- it’s much more powerful when I know others are circling with me. Other sisters have mentioned this to me as well. How they feel the power in hearing their intention going out into the Universe, being held by their sisters and hearing so much of themselves in the other intentions that are read. The power in creating sacred space is multiplied when others join you energetically.

Today I sit with the gratitude for the opportunity and intentionality of virtual sacred space. I set forth into 2014 with the heart centered intention to continue creating sacred space in my own life without being held down by the physical!

 

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Lizann Bassham
    Lizann Bassham says #
    Always good to remember that a sense of separation by geography is as much as an illusion as the linear nature of time....blessing
  • Paola Suarez
    Paola Suarez says #
    Yes I love the way you describe it Lizann! It's all about stepping away from linear thinking and the illusions that separate us.

Nature Before & After by Cuba Gallery @ FlickrI've been taking time daily, to connect with the spirits of my space, at work, home, the grocery store, the homes of others, and the commute connecting it all. It seems so silly. I've spent all these years focused on THIS totem, THAT guide, THIS space, sacred on/off, despite that intellectually I've known it's with me all the time. I am it. It is All.

What's the expression--the hell you know--to say nothing of the sacred.

I guess I'm beginning to sit more comfortably with not having to name things, less lines,  deeper relationships--even if they only last a few moments. The realization that whatever I need is wherever I am, etherically, all the time, no matter what, is heady empowerment. It's also terribly humbling.

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs

My first blog for SageWoman. Welcome sister! May this become a Sacred Space where you come to breathe, resource, come home to sisters and the Sacred Feminine. A place where you reconnect to the sacred.

I am writing this on a flight from Amsterdam to Denver. I will be meeting Clarissa Pinkola Estés. Exciting, as my life as a spiritual teacher started out 20 years ago with giving workshops around her fabulous book Women Who Run With the Wolves. What a thrilling moment! A good opportunity to reflect on my years of teaching and priestessing. What has proven itself important through the years?

At that time I was beginning on this path I was impressed by one of my neighbors. She always had something to say on everything. Wouldn’t life be easy if I always knew everything, I often mused? If I had all the right words to put a blog together? Actually, life has proved differently. She alienated her dear ones from her by always having to tell her view on things, and never having space to listen to THEIR side. I am not so jealous of her anymore.

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Recent comment in this post - Show all comments
  • Paola Suarez
    Paola Suarez says #
    I have also recently had the epiphany regarding working with my own gifts instead of bemoaning the ones I do not have. Enjoyed you

Posted by on in Paths Blogs

There is lots of talk in modern Paganism about 'holding space'. It's an idea I rather love - the focused intention and purpose of a (usually ritual) act. But how often do we consciously realize the holding of space in the everyday as well? How far do we become beholden to it as we take it for granted?

b2ap3_thumbnail_kingsmen-aerial-240x180.jpg

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  • Janneke Brouwers
    Janneke Brouwers says #
    "If you take out the oven, the bed, the bath... surely space just IS, until our intention gives it purpose." There is a great conc

Posted by on in Culture Blogs

b2ap3_thumbnail_cauldron.jpgLately I’ve been contemplating the title of my blog. Cauldron is magikal space. The theta wave brain state where we access guides, ancestors, and deities stands in contrast the kitchen, mundane space. Many Pagans struggle in mundane space. But even those of us that function effectively in the world outside the circle or festival, often find ourselves longing for that place of magik and connection.

We all know how hard it can be to keep swimming in the cauldron when the kids or boss is screaming, and bookkeeping (my personal nemesis) is looming. I go to a yearly festival, and, in the last few years, weekend conferences here and there. For the first few years of attending Rites of Spring, I would return home feeling torn and saddened. At the closing ritual, we were invited to take the magik back out into the world and that just seemed so impossible. But I kept working on it.

Food has been my main focus, and examining how my connection to the great unseen relates to what I put in my mouth has been an exercise in expanding connections. How much more grounded can you get than food? But food is easy compared to bookkeeping, or picking up after my family (I don’t work full-time so I get the job) both of which I really do not enjoy. But then again, I didn’t enjoy cooking when I started either.

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At Asheville's Mother Grove Goddess Temple, there is a small chapel room. It is permanently set with a main altar in the North, three other directional altars and a niche (which is actually an unused doorway) that holds a tiered Ancestor altar.

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs

It's been a while, but I'm back again, lovely readers! I'm currently hard at work on my second book (amongst other projects, as you'll see below), but I will certainly continue to post here as and when I can. Comments and topic requests always welcome.


At this time of year, it's easy to understand why our ancestors (both actual and spiritual), those wise women and cunning men, were considered remote, unusual, untouchable, even fearsome.

As Autumn moves into Winter here in the UK, we feel our natural, animal pull to dig in, hibernate, take time within the darkness to assess the previous year and anticipate the time to come - but I doubt any busy society has ever really allowed that to happen, except when they have no choice. Stoke up the fire, head to the pub or communal house, light and laughter against the outside world.

(Photo - 'Autumn in the New Forest', from Glastonbury Goddess Temple)

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

Like many Pagans, I am a lover of literature. It was in books that I first discovered the Gods. I devoured tales of Artemis and Apollo and Isis and Anubis and Brigid. And -- like many -- the first thing I did after my (re)discovery of the Gods was build an altar.

I felt most drawn to the Hellenic Gods, but I had no real guidelines for the proper construction of a Greek-style altar. I found a basic diagram in Scott Cunningham's Wicca: A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner, and used that as a template: bust of Apollo and a gold candle on the right, bust of Artemis and a silver candle on the left, bowl of dried flowers, small cup of earth, small cup of water.

Over the years, my altar has expanded and changed multiple times, as my spiritual path has matured and as I have moved around the country. Currently, my main altar includes icons for Apollo, Artemis, Hermes, Hekate and Gaea, along with a hand-made clay icon of Odin (in thanks for a vision of Him, which I am still mulling over). 

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Hearth Witchery

It has come as a surprise to me, considering my relationship with Odin (the  Wanderer and hedge-crosser extraordinaire), but I have been discovering lately that I am far more of a hearth witch than a hedge witch.  Don't get me wrong; I do love wandering through the dark woods at night, threading my way through cemeteries, or exploring the Eugene wetlands.  I love to explore these liminal places in a light trance state, letting the already-fragile boundaries between the worlds blur so that I can commune with the spirits there.  This is part of my practice, and it always will be.  (And in the case of the wetlands, I do this every morning on my walk to work, in the early hours when the human world is still barely stirring but the land wights--or land spirits--are awake and going about their day.) But at the heart of my practice, I am a Doorway for my gods and spirits, and to fulfill that function I must be anchored in this world, even as I work at blurring its edges.  

I just had an entire week off from my day job, for the first time in years, and found myself spending much of it at my spinning wheel, or gathering supplies to make prayer beads, or in my kitchen learning to make salted caramels, or planning what I will need to begin producing candles and other non-yarn goodies for my Etsy shop.   When given a choice between wandering outdoors and busying myself with activities at home, I nearly always choose the latter.  Perhaps my physical condition pays a part in this (I have moderate to severe fibromyalgia, and at this point I still work full time so that saps a lot of my energy), but most of the time I find that I would rather be at home, tending a hearth for my gods and for the spirits I honor, rather than out in the world.  My trips out in the world fortify and help to shape my hearth; they feed it and strengthen my center.  In this I am like Frigga, who puts Her apron aside and rides with Her Husband in the Hunt during the dark half of the year, but the rest of the time concentrates Her efforts on creating a welcoming home for Him to return to after His wanderings.

To get back to the topic of setting up a hearth in your own home if you do not already have one, despite my previous definition of the hearth as a place of fire, there is always the option of interpreting "fire" symbolically.  Along these lines, your hearth can be that place that anchors and nourishes your home, that feeds what you love most about it, the "flame" that makes your home a welcoming place.  For some people, it would clearly be the kitchen table where the family gathers for dinner to share stories of their day.  For some, it might be a place of literal fire, such as the woodburning stove (and do I ever wish I had one!) where herbal oils and brews are prepared.

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