I write this on Beltane eve, later than I hoped.A bout with some bug has laid me low and I will not be up to my usual activities this Sabbat.But perhaps my enforced period of solitude has enabled me to think a little more deeply than I might have about the meaning of this time.
Beltane and May Day comprise one of the two most important Wiccan Sabbats, the other, Samhain, being six months away.For Wiccans and most other NeoPagans Beltane marks the beginning of summer.We believe every basic dimension of physical existence is sacred in its own way, and seek to honor each at that time of the year when it can be most powerfully symbolized in ritual and celebration.Beltane and May Day so honor summer.
Shellfish are a monstrous evil that Almighty God, giver of freedom and liberty, commands us in Leviticus to suppress. They also smell bad. [...] Any person who willingly consumes or sells shellfish is guilty of a felony, and shall be fined $666 thousand per occurrence, and/or imprisoned up to 6 years, 6 months, and 6 days.
President Obama announced last week that the United States and Cuba are moving toward normalizing their relationship. I may have the world’s strangest set of credentials to comment on this. I have been there twice, both times legally. I have visited Cuban schools and talked to the students. I have presented on Cuba at professional conferences, universities, and to church groups. I was doing research in Havana on the 50th anniversary of the Cuban Revolution (nothing interesting happened).
From the Wild Hunt: Robert Rudachyk is seeking the nomination to become the Liberal Party of Canada‘s candidate for the federal riding of Saskatoon West. What makes this run for office unusual is that Rudachyk appears to be the first openly Heathen candidate to run for public office in Canada.
Here at the Pagan News Beagle, I've decided to have themes for each day of the week, based on my version of the Five Elements. (Air, Fire, Water, Earth, and Spirit.) Plus, a "Science for Pagans" feed for the weekend. It keeps things interesting for me in organizing what stories to share. Hopefully it will be interesting for you, too!
Tuesday -- whose name comes from the Norse god Tiuw, often also related to the Roman god Mars -- I'm dedicating to the Element of Fire, and articles related to activism, politics, and passion.
How exciting to become a member of the PaganSquare community! It is an honor and joy to reach out to you, sharing my thoughts and feelings, building a bridge between my home in Athens, Greece and people who live in all corners of the world. My goal is to look at the present with fresh eyes, tracing its hidden connections to our Pagan past.
As my first contribution, I have decided to focus on a hot topic: the movement that challenges the dominant models of sexuality and relationships demanding the rights of LGBTQI* people. The bearded face of Conchita Wurst, the transgender woman who won the Eurovision singing contest, still haunts the mind of people around Europe. The request for the acceptance of same-sex marriages is heard again and again in Greece, as well as in other countries.
The #HobbyLobby Supreme Court case today is complex, and its import for Pagans not clear. Court tried to rule narrowly, but left open many important issues for further decisions.
Clear winners: family-owned businesses (even corporations that are not publicly-traded) that have religious objections to various mandated public policies, organizations and people opposed to certain kinds of contraception and to abortion. Pro-life groups rejoice, as well as employers of all sizes and types. (Can "religious exemptions" apply outside of contraception? Unclear.)
Clear losers: female employees of said family-owned businesses who want contraceptive services covered under their employer-paid health care. (Though this will be somewhat dealt with by the Obama administration plans to cover such care itself, similar to exemption given to religious non-profits such as the Catholic church.) Opponents of "corporate personhood" gnash their teeth.
Up in the air: how far will the "religious exemption" go for family businesses?