Author Archives: Erin
All about Erin - who has written 742 posts on Erin's Journal.
An author, a Wiccan, a Druid, a Priestess, a member of the ULC, Owner of Erin's Journal, mystic, magickian, DragonKin, Guardian and Transsexual. All these and more describe Erin.
- AIM: davenmor3
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Posts by Erin:
What’s wrong with being new?
I see this mentioned many times on other blogs and articles, and I keep coming back to the central point of “what is wrong with being a new person in a religion?”
I know I’m pretty harsh with fluffies in this site. I don’t equate new people with fluffies however. Fluffies are those who are deliberately and willfully ignorant and revel in being that way. They go out of their way to promote and argue the ignorant and busted myths from decades ago (Wicca is ancient, 9 million, all gods are one god, etc) and they decry and flame those who have the temerity to say differently.
But being new is not the same thing. One can be fluffy and new, that’s easy. But one can also be new and be non-fluffy, in that one is willing to listen and learn. And that is listen and learn to multiple sources, not just one.
But I see people on some of the forums I’m on who go out of their way to present that they are not new. Why? I think Juliaki’s essy (referenced a few posts back) about this same problem hits a very key point, many new people are treated as fluffies.
When in the course of religious events, it becomes necessary for one Pagan to deconstruct the documents which have previously connected him with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal status to which Nature and the Nature’s Gods entitle him to, a decent respect for the opinions of mankind demand that he list the causes that impel the corrections.
Most hold these truths to be self evident, that no witch speaks for all, that all witches are endowed by their deity(s) with certain inalienable rights, and among these are Rational Thought, Opinion and the Pursuit of Truth. That to fairly administer these rights organizations are created amongst Pagans, deriving their just powers from the consent of those ascribing to their rules. That whenever any organization overreaches itself it is the right of the Witches to disband that organization as fast as possible, and to disavow all connection to the group that once supported them.
(Originally published in “The Druid’s Arch”, the Official Newsletter of the Ord Draíochta Na Uisnech in the Beltane 2003 issue, Volume 1, Issue 1.)
Well, here it is, Beltane again. Once more we stand on the threshold of the transition between Winter and Summer. “The Long Dark Tea-time of the Soul” as one author put it, is now at an end, and we are moving back into the light. All around us, the Earth has been waking and changing. The plants have been pushing up through the soil, renewing their life, the birds have mated and even now, the chicks are starting to grow. The wild things are leaving the protection of their parents and starting to move around on their own, renewing the LIFE that is this planet.
How are we, as Druids, responding to this? We may feel it in our bones, we may feel the quickening pulse of the Land, we may feel compelled to sing at odd times. Many of us may be forced by something deep inside ourselves to clean the house and air it out, letting the newness that is Spring and Summer come in. Soon we will be hearing the lazy buzz of the bees and the Katydids and remembering the lethargy that comes when the heat climbs into the triple digits. We may remember to take shorter showers, conserve water and to try to make sure that others have the same resources that we have.
by Raven Grimassi
Llewellyn Publications, 2001
Review by Daven
Raven is fast becoming one of my favorite authors. His writing style is clear and fluid, never condescending to the reader, nor written on the level of the lowest common denominator.
This is the thinnest book in the Sabbat series from Llewellyn, and that had me concerned for a little while. Raven may have skimped on the information a bit, but the information that is there is well worth the price. There is information in here concerning the hobbyhorse, Mummery and flower meanings. In addition, there are myths from almost every European culture, a first for this series.
There is an entire chapter devoted to the plants of this holiday, from flowers and flower speech to the plants fairies find attractive. Herbs play a prominent role in this, as well as the trees and plants associated with the Goddess.
The de rigueur spells and recipes are here. This time all the recipes are in one place, unlike the Ostara book reviewed elsewhere. In the same section you will find some quick folk remedies for some common complaints such as infertility and heavy moon-flow, for example. I feel this is to the good since this season is all about fertility.
The History of Seax-Wica is a short and interesting one. There are no long myths of the origins of the tradition, no claims to antiquity, and very few conflicting versions of how the tradition came to be.
Mostly Seax-Wica came from the vision of one man, Raymond Buckland. While he was in America teaching the tradition he learned from Gardner to us willing Americans, he found his own ideas developing along lines that differed in important ways from Gardner’s. So, he kept true to his oaths of silence and split with Gardner. He spent many years researching Pagan traditions, and he sat down and wrote, from start to finish, Seax-Wica.
Seax-Wica has a basis of Saxon belief. From what Buckland has said and what I have read, there is a mish-mash of traditions and celebrations intermixed into this tradition, mainly because the Saxon culture itself was made up of many different traditions as well. Many scholars have tried to separate out “pure” Saxon from the rest, and it can’t be done.
Because of this, you have a Norse influence in the Gods’ names. Instead of something completely different, the God is Woden and the Goddess is Freya. If you didn’t know that the Saxons were heavily influenced by the Norse, you could get more than a bit confused by this seeming deity displacement.
by Ann Moura (Aoumiel)
Llewellyn Publications, 2000
When I first received this trilogy (I also received Green Witchcraft II and Green Witchcraft III in the same package) I was excited. Here was a beginner’s volume that promised to be as good as Buckland’s or Cunningham’s books. In many respects, I was correct.
However, the title and the introduction state that this series and this particular book is a “Beginner’s Guide” which I would have to take some exception to. I will explain this further in my review.
Upon first getting the book, I must say that the artwork is excellent. The simple line drawings that decorate the chapters evoke a quiet sense of beauty, reminiscent of the minimalist styles of artwork of Asia. I wish the artist were credited on their drawings. (The interior artist, I later found out is Nyease Sommerset.)
Within the first five pages, I started getting confused. The author is extremely familiar with Wicca, the Craft, Religions and many other areas of study relating to this arena, and the writing was clear, but I was expecting the book to start with something like “Welcome to Wicca, I will be your guide” or another form of hand-holding that many of the authors of beginning Wicca books do. Ann does none of these.
First Published on “The Juggler”
Many that I have talked to about this topic have expressed to me that one of the reasons they hunt bunnies are because of the PR war.
Think back to the icons that are being held up on TV and in the media as “typical witches”. You find that most of them are extremeists. People like Lady Belladona LeVeau on the recent show “Wife Swap”. AP with brooms? Fire spinning? Teaching her children how to be a HPS instead of a human being? House elves? And that’s a minor example.
How about Jonathon ‘The Impaler’ Sharkey? Remember him? He’s the “vampire” who was running for the post of Governor of Minnesota, who promised to put the Ten Commandments AND the Wiccan Rede in every government building in Minnesota, as well as impailing criminals on the Capital Lawn. He claims to be a witch and his wife is also a Pagan, according to what they say.
This tool is just that, a tether for your self. It is representative of the Silver Cord you have as part of your soul/body connection. In many works about Out of Body Experiences, people report seeing a cord of some sort leading from their soul to the body. It is theorized that this is because there is a small sliver of your soul and consciousness still in your body, keeping it functioning.
If this sliver is removed from the body, most people who have studied OOBE and Astral Projection theorize that the body will die.
So this tether is representative of that connection between the soul and body. It keeps the two connected, sending messages from one to the other, and giving the soul a “ball of string” to follow back to the body.
Symbolically this tether can represent all kinds of things:
- The Silver cord
- The string Theseus used in the Labyrinth
- A “grounding wire”
- Tree Roots
- The string of fate in many pantheons
- A charging wire for your phone or iPod
(Note from Daven: This is a post that I put up on one of the teaching threads I have at Ancient Sites in response to a question about the Astral Plane. It’s a representation of how I think the Astral Plane works. Note, this is my opinion, and what I am comfortable with. It’s what I think the planes are and how they are structured. As always, your mileage may vary.)
The Astral Plane
Heaven. The Summerlands. Valhalla. Mount Olympus. Hell. Hades. The Abyss. Underhill.
All of these names conjure up visions of different places. Streets paved in Gold, and Greek Columns are only a few of many possible views we could have when we talk about the Astral Plane.
All of these places exist in only one place. Mercedes Lackey’s view of Underhill (as described in Chrome Circle) is an accurate description of the Astral Plane.
Different beings have claimed areas of their won and imposed their Will on a particular area and molded it into what they wish it to be. Some have made their areas into havens and others into the realms of nightmares. Some areas are keyed only to those with a specific vibrational state, and some are open to all. Some are traps.