Culture Blogs


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Culture Blogs

Popular subjects in contemporary Pagan culture and practice.

Category contains 2 blog entries contributed to teamblogs

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Turn Left at Aphrodite

Go between the two standing stones into the woods.

Follow the path down to the Great Circle.

When you get to Aphrodite, turn left.

Then head down the hill through the trees.

That's how you get to the Bull Stone.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Making Incense With A Wood Chipper

Yes, you read that correctly.  I’ve been making incense for more than 20 years and in the early days I never would have imagined adding a chipper to my arsenal of incense making tools.  I searched  for an appropriate chipper for several years. A few months ago I finally took the plunge.  Oh how I wish I had done this sooner!

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The Sweet Beltaine of a Butterfly

The below is the meditation/story I offered in preparation for Beltaine. Feel free to use any part of it with attribution.

You. You.  have been a caterpillar.

You have been not just any caterpillar, you have been a brightly black-and-chartreuse-striped caterpillar, chomping happily throughout your life, ever hungry, never satisfied, ever hungry, never full. Chomp. Chomp Chomping on the milkweed around you. You have been black and yellow, brightly striped. You have been a prize for birds, but you have lived. You emerged from your egg and you have been a caterpillar.

...
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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The Great Lammas Massacre

It's gone down in local pagan lore as the Great Lammas Massacre.

Lammas 1985. One of the local Wiccan churches is holding their August Eve in a city park.

In mid-invocation, the high priest looks up and sees police approaching, so he picks up his athame and starts to open the circle.

Bad idea.

Anyway, no one got shot, and, in the long run, what opened up instead was a conversation that has resulted in a pretty good ongoing relationship between local law enforcement and the pagan community.

I talked a while back with a woman who had been there that night. She'd been a neophyte at the time, and had been wearing a white robe and a crown of flowers.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • M.T. Noah
    M.T. Noah says #
    I wish I knew more about this.... ly. Thank you.
  • Ian Phanes
    Ian Phanes says #
    That police officer from the mainland was very lucky that she didn't lead him on a frenzied chase through a cave to meet the...

Posted by on in Culture Blogs

I'm very far behind in my obligations for this blog so I thank all for their patience.  Today's offering is for the Mighty Dagda.  

 

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Jamie
    Jamie says #
    Ms. Brokaw, Thanks for sharing! Very nice.
  • Melia/Merit Brokaw
    Melia/Merit Brokaw says #
    Thank you!

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Bavarian Beltane

The two tallest points in pretty much every Bavarian town are the steeple and the Maypole.

I suppose that tells you a lot about Bavaria.

Say what you will about phallic symbols (“Really, Daisy! We've been over this a hundred times!”), the Maypole is a tree. In the old days, the young folks would go off to the woods early on May morning to find the tallest, straightest-trunked fir that they could. They'd lop off all the branches except for the top ones, and ceremoniously bring it back to town.

There they'd deck the May Tree with flowers and greens, and raise it on the town commons, where it would become the focus for the day's activities. (The night's activities, of course, would have taken place around the the bonfire. Beltane is bipolar: the Fire and the Tree.)

These days, there probably isn't a single wooden May Tree to be found in all of Bavaria. Now Maypoles are permanent installations: tall metal poles, like flag-poles. Where my cousin lives, the Maypole stands year-round in front of the fire station.

Most of the Bavarian Maypoles that I saw were painted blue and white, in spiraling stripes like a barber's pole. (Blue and white are the “national” colors of Bavaria.) Instead of greens and flowers, the trunk is crossed with metal arms, from which hang the emblems of the various local guilds. (The emblem of the Baker's guild, for instance, is a pretzel. A hundred years ago, my emigre Bavarian great-grandfather was known in Pittsburgh as the Pretzel Man.)

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Bringing Home the May

So, here's irreducible Beltane.

First, wear green.

Early, early, early on May morning, go out to the woods.

There collect what's wild and green and growing. That's called gathering May. If, in the process, you happen to make a little surreptitious love, so much the better. That's gathering May, too.

Bring home the May (and you really do have to sing as you do this).

Deck yourself, the door, the table, with the magical greenery that you've gathered.

Then to the feast, and all the joys of the Day.

The magic here is self-evident.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    I'd never really thought about Berhta as the Anti-Santa before. Thanks Forest!
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    Ivy, you've brought a smile to my face. My very best to you and Forest both, now that Berhta has finally beat a retreat and Beltan
  • Michele Brazelton
    Michele Brazelton says #
    I have no reason to think you will remember me but just today my son (who is 19 now!) Forest said "do you remember that guy who wa
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    Here's the newest Berhta piece: http://witchesandpagans.com/pagan-culture-blogs/paganistan/twin-cities-killer-targets-mall-santas.
  • Kimberley
    Kimberley says #
    I am new to this blogging thing. I have been studying Paganism for a long time but have to do it in silence as do many. I would

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