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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in harvest

Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
Harvest-tide

     The full Harvest Moon rises tonight. As its clear light falls on forest and field, take a moment to meditate on the majesty of the season. Harvest-tide is a time to be thankful. Our ancestors knew this abundant season was their only hope for the winter months. Successful harvests meant survival. Today that dreadful uncertainty is taken from us. Of course we will survive the winter. There are plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, meats and breads available at the local grocery store. We have nothing to worry about.

     Or do we? This year-round abundance is available to us at a cost. Pollution from shipping, from poorly managed factory farms, over-planted fields stripped of nutrients, herbicides, pesticides--they are all eating this planet alive. I am as guilty of purchasing off-season produce as anyone else: my four year old adores strawberries and apples, and in my effort to instill healthy eating habits I am not going to refuse him fresh fruit in January.

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
A harvest of hats

I’m late with this post. I normally aim to blog in the first two days of the month, and in truth this time I nearly forgot. The 1st brought me a handfasting, the 2nd a political launch and as I swapped hastily between celebrant and press officer hats, the Druid blogger hat didn’t get a look in. I wear a lot of hats, so this kind of thing happens now and then.

When you have one identity defined by one thing you are doing, it’s much easier to steer the course of your life and pace yourself in line with the year. The more hats you have, the harder it is to keep an overview. I frequently end up running from one kind of job to another, so busy trying to be in the right headspace for the task in hand that I don’t pay as much attention as I might to the bigger picture. So here I am wondering how it got to be September already, and nearly missing a post.

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  • Lynda Ryder
    Lynda Ryder says #
    You've got me thinking now about how many hats I find myself wearing during a typical day/week/month... And you're so right about
New Moon in Virgo: A Practical Priestess

The New Moon this month occurs in the sign of Virgo (2'19) on Monday, August 25th, at 7:13 am (PDT). Virgo is the archetype of the Virgin goddess, originally meaning, “whole unto herself”.  And, no matter how devoted Virgo is to the people in his or her life, a certain part of Virgo’s psyche always remains “untouched” by the opinions or influence of anyone else. Virgo is a Mutable Earth sign, meaning it is a threshold sign, bridging one season into the next, and it resonates with the grounding and stable element of Earth. Virgo season is summer transitioning into autumn, and this energy is indelibly imprinted into the archetype, giving way to a Mercurial nature in the Virgo personality. The Virgo archetype echoes with the preparation for harvest: we begin the task of separating the grain from the chaff in our lives.  This requires clear-headed logic, as well as attention to our deep intuition about what crops we will harvest, and what needs to be turned back into the soil, or allowed to die on the vine.  The Virgo personality is often lauded as analytical, discerning, and as having a superior flair for organizational activities. When you think of the qualities of the season, this makes sense.  And, although this time of year is fast paced and busy as we get ready to go back to school or work, there is also a quiet turning within now.


Virgo embodies the aspect of the Priestess that is self-purified and dedicated to the practical expressions of serving the divine.  The archetype is associated with all types of ritual, and integrated daily spiritual practice. There is a visceral body/mind connection with Virgo, and you can find many with Virgo strong in their charts working as nutritionists, yoga teachers, herbalists and holistic practitioners.  Health, healing and daily care of the body are all Virgo preoccupations. Virgo is also the inspired craftsperson, using their attention to detail to produce beautiful works in a variety of mediums.  Additionally, they have an innate talent to elevate what others might term “puttering”- beekeeping, gardening, flower arranging and so forth - into an everyday art form.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The Golden God

I hear that if you go into a supermarket in Latvia and take a box of cereal off the shelf, you'll find that it's marked with the sign of the Grain God: Jumis.

I say God of Grain, but Jumis (you-miss) is much more than that. His name means “double” or “twin” (it's the same as Sanskrit jama, “twin,” or Latin Gemini, for that matter), and doubled things are his: twins, double fruits and nuts, eggs with two yolks. Abundance, fertility, marriage, all the good things: these are his gifts. His sign, shown above, represents two crossed grain stalks, heavy heads hanging: it is, one might say, shorthand for “sheaf.” (The motif has been used continuously in Latvian art since the Bronze Age.) He is the Baltic John Barleycorn, the Latvian Frey, the merry big-dicked god of bread and beer and other good things.

The harvest is, of course, his special feast, and lots of hymns to him survive. Many of them, like harvest songs everywhere, tend towards the bawdy. A stanza from one of my favorites:

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
My Children for My Children

If ever I've heard Earth speak, it was in that moment.

Early August: a windy hilltop in western Wisconsin. We've called to her, our beloved Earth of many summers. She stands here in our midst, her hands on the swelling curve of her belly, and her look to us is love.

She cries out. She is in labor now. She crouches in the birth-squat and we dance for her. We labor with her in her birthing, until that final long-drawn cry of triumph. Our circling stills. In the windblown silence, she draws forth from beneath her skirts the newly-born, the god-loaf. We cheer them, him and her.

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs

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Here we are, just past the midpoint between Litha and Mabon. The sun, while not at its zenith, is still high in the sky and hot upon the land. Early crops are being harvested while even more bounty makes ready to soon laden our tables and altars with sustenance and gifts, and fill our pantries with stores for the dark half of the year.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

Lughnasadh greetings to all my friendly readers from Airmid the Wortcunning Fairy!

I hope you are all having a bountiful early harvest because now is the best time for enjoying fresh treats from the fields and gardens-- especially berries. The most popular berry of Lughnasadh is the bilberry, also known as wild blueberry or huckleberry. These are smaller, juicier, softer and darker than the blueberries you would find at the supermarket, although they taste just as sweet. In Ireland, these berries are called fraochán. In the old days, everybody would get together and go bilberry picking around Lughnasadh, which was not as easy as it sounds because the best bilberries grow in the thickest patches of heather on the hillsides and peat lands. It's well worth the work, though, because later there would be scrumptious cakes, tarts and for the adults bilberry wine. If there is a good harvest of bilberries, the rest of the crops are sure to be abundant later in the year. (Bilberries on the bush. Photo by kahvikisu via flickr Creative Commons)

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