War on Yule: Starbucks Cups Are Christian Propaganda

War on Yule: Starbucks Cups Are Christian Propaganda

Usually Starbucks incorporates a wide variety of anti-Christian imagery onto their winter holiday-themed cups, but this year the Seattle coffee company has completely capitulated to the growing pressure from right-wing fundamentalist Christian groups to “put the Christ back in Yule” by creating a holiday cup design that not only rejects all the Pagan symbolism of this blessed time of year, but actively promotes a Christian worldview. Don’t believe me? Check out this breakdown of Christian symbolism…

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Further Reflections on Death & Fire

Further Reflections on Death & Fire

I’m usually somewhat solemn around this time of year, sitting quietly at my desk listening to the quiet rain and even quieter fog outside my window, enjoying the damp quiet day in my own little way as my not-at-all-damp-thank-you cat quietly looks on….

But not this year. This year, something’s gotten into me. A bit of trickster spirit, maybe. A bit of fire. Since March, which is when Sir Terry Pratchett died, a part of me has become really, really angry. Another part of me can’t stop praying.

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7 Ways to Enjoy a Death-Free Samhain

7 Ways to Enjoy a Death-Free Samhain

A couple years ago I wrote 7 Ways to Enjoy a Sex-Free Beltane, in honor of all those single and/or disinterested folks out there who were looking to celebrate the reason for the season without necessarily having to “get down,” “jump on it” or “funk it up.” Weirdly, that post did not become the runaway viral sensation I was anticipating.

This year, though, things will be different. If there’s one thing people like more than having sex, it’s avoiding death and thoughts thereof…

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Brief Reflections On Getting Burnt

Brief Reflections On Getting Burnt

It’s not the idealists that bother me. I like idealists. The world desperately needs idealists…

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The Wild Hunt for the Other God

The Wild Hunt for the Other God

Our knowledge, instead of leading us to certainty, betrays us — guiding us deeper into the confused complexity of the forest, the dark wilds of unknowing. This is holy bewilderment. This is the horizon that is forever receding and can never be reached; the periphery that is everywhere and nowhere. We find ourselves spinning in circles. We look for a centered self that isn’t there, and when we find it, it is deeply bizarre. We are confronted by an Other that can never be centered or normalized. This is the call of the Wild One. Welcome to the hunt…

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The Mole Problem: Why Good Animists Make Good Neighbors

The Mole Problem: Why Good Animists Make Good Neighbors

When a friend visited our new home for the first time recently, he observed, “Looks like you’ve got a mole problem.”

“We’ve got a mole,” I said, “I don’t know if that’s a problem!”

That’s how this post began, rather innocently, although it quickly veered into controversial territory. Or perhaps it started there already. I guess it all depends on how you feel about moles.

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Tending to Your Joy: Pagan Lessons from Pixar’s Inside Out

Tending to Your Joy: Pagan Lessons from Pixar’s Inside Out

Inside Out is a modern-day story of the shamanic journey into the Otherworld, a journey of both self-recovery and self-discovery. Does sadness have a purpose? Is it just a “negative” emotion that helps joy shine more brightly? That’s the question that this movie challenges us to explore, and the answer is more complex than you might expect!

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How To Be An Evil Stepmother

How To Be An Evil Stepmother

I’ll never forget the day (nearly five years ago now) when The Oldest said, in a tone so like her mother’s snide dismissiveness, “If you didn’t want to be a stepmom, then you shouldn’t have decided to marry a man with kids.” It hurt. I felt blind-sided. I had no good answer. Instead, I sat for a second speechless and nonplussed, and then the conversation moved on.

I didn’t want to be a stepmom. I don’t know if anybody ever wants to be a stepmom. So why did I become one?

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Q&A: What’s your Pagan origin story?

Q&A: What’s your Pagan origin story?

I’m sure a lot of Pagans have said this, but for me discovering Paganism and Druidry was never really about leaving something behind: it was about coming home to myself. From a very early age, I have always cared deeply about the natural world, and I’ve seen the powers and forces of nature and the many non-human beings who share the planet with us as expressions of the divine. I’ve also always loved music, poetry and storytelling — and art and creativity in general — and see them as vital practices for connecting authentically with the heart of my spirituality. All of that was true when I was Catholic, and it’s still true now. I also know lots of Christians who feel the same way, and many of those Christians share very similar spiritual practices — meditation, divination, chanting and breathwork, etc. So what exactly is the difference between me and them?

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Bless the Waters Thrice: Making Environmentally Sustainable Offerings

Bless the Waters Thrice: Making Environmentally Sustainable Offerings

We Pagans have a love affair with the past that leads us to try to model the rituals and practices of ancient times as closely as possible. But we live in a different world today. Despite the ornate beauty of certain approaches to ritual, I wince at the wastefulness I see sometimes. Can this really be what the gods want from us? Are we so busy trying to do ritual “correctly” that we fail to do it well?

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