Late Ostara Musings

It seems apt, somehow, that our family celebrated Ostara late this year.  After all, we had snow that day.  And it is just this past week that we’ve consistently had temperatures over 50 degrees for more than two days in a row.  Perhaps even more telling than the vagaries of the thermometer, I’ve now been cursed at by a daddy-to-be goose protecting his nesting mate as I walked into work, the henbit and chickweed are blooming (yay, free smoothie greens!) and ready for foraging, and perhaps most importantly, the minions are getting restless with school and inside play and desperate to go to the beach…

First Tea of the Day: Green tea with chickweed and henbit (and honey)

Something I found on Facebook that made me lol:  10 Reasons Why You Should Never Get a Tattoo (but having a baby is fine)

And, in other news for the family, Chickadee is officially 7.  Her birthday party was last night–we are hosted the 2nd annual Mermaid Slumber Party.  The girls ate starfish pizza (from crescent rolls), decorated their own cupcakes, played outside with bubbles and those ribbon wand thingies (also hula hoops and jump ropes) wearing mermaid tails,  made jellyfish hats (which they also wore), and watched Disney movies into the wee hours of the morning.  This morning, they were *still* up at the crack of dawn and we had French toast, which they ate in the “undersea forts” they built of “seaweed” (blankets), and made candy sushi (to take home).

I’m exhausted.  The house is a wreck.

A Random App Recommendation: Toca Labs–its a free app that lets kids “discover” the elements of the periodic table by virtually heating, centrifuging, electrocuting, freezing, or adding chemicals little atom guys.  My only complaint is that they have a sort of Sims language thing going on, rather than telling the used the actual element name when its discovered.

But its really cute.  And its free.  And it kills time in the waiting room at the doctor’s office.

Tarot Card of the Day: Page of Cups

It took some hunting to find a Page of Cups that I *really* liked, but here we go…

Page of Cups from Shadowscapes Tarot, ©Stephanie Pui-Mun Law (shared with permission)

Page of Cups from Shadowscapes Tarot, ©Stephanie Pui-Mun Law
(shared with permission)

The Page of Cups is a sign of high emotion and beginnings.  It could signify a new love, or a creative endeavor, or the arrival of a catalyst or messenger for change (of the emotional upheaval sort).  As a person, the Page of Cups is a child-like dreamer, capable of great intuition and depth of feeling as well as (reversed) great emotional immaturity.  In a reading, context is everything as this card can take on a myriad of possible meanings.

Some random advice on clothing that I really like (that I found while looking for tutorials on doing victory rolls):

(This is geared towards 50′s/rockabilly/pin-up/vintage dressing, but really, you could put “steampunk” or “hippie” in for “vintage” in her schpiel and its true)

Moment of Zen: A somewhat sleepy review of Philip Carr-Gom’s Wild Wisdom Meditations: I recently purchased this as an MP-3 via Amazon (it is also available on iTunes and CDbaby), and I really like it.  I’m pretty sure I’d love it, if I had a better time than bedtime to listen to it…instead, I end up so into it and relaxed that I fall asleep in some of the most pleasant places to start dreaming!!!  So, I guess that is still a good thing, right?

A prayer for Spring:

Spring dances change into the turning of the year, into the turning of our lives.  She shrugs off the slumber of winter and warms the cold earth with a cloak of flowers. Some changes we anticipate with eagerness, and some we plan with equisite detail.  But some come unwanted, with pain and reluctance. To all these changes, Spring brings us the gift of perspective, beckoning us to expectation, hope, and rebirth.

Goddess, may your sunlight and the rain be reminders that as the Earth is renewing, so can we.

(by thalassa)

 

In which tired momma is tired:

I had planned to write a bit more…but I think its time for a nap.

Plus, the hubby is on 2nd shift right now, and working 12 hour nights overtime this weekend, and its sort of my only chance to curl up with him for a bit.

The kids are fed and watching a movie together for a bit, so they will keep for me to take a wee cat nap (and hopefully nod off themselves).

HAPPY SPRING!


PBP 2014: Thinking about Grace

In the Christian tradition, grace is something that is given and received. If justice is getting what we deserve, and mercy is not getting the punishment deserved, then grace is an undeserved reward–like forgiveness, love, etc. The Christian god gives grace in the form of forgiveness and sanctification and Christians give grace in the form of reverence and worship (depending on the denomination, this may or may not be a tit for tat relationship).  I was raised in a tradition that taught that God’s grace was supposed to flow downhill (something I think a lot of Christians have lost sight of, unfortunately)–that divine favor is given by virtue of divine love, and that there is an implicit responsibility to share that favor with others, regardless of one’s bias as to their worthiness.

But divine grace is not unique to Christianity.  One might wonder, on a Pagan blog, why I would lead with a discussion of a Christian perspective–quite simply because many (I would even venture most) people have been exposed to the Christian context of the term.   Grace in and of itself is a multi-faceted word and an equally multifaceted idea.  It can mean everything from “to thank” to “to bestow favor” to esteem, good will, refinement, elegance or virtue.  As a Pagan, I embrace the idea of grace with some tweaking of the Christian perspective.

Were I a traditional sort of polytheist, I might reject the idea of grace (I have had conversation with people that take this position) on the basis that the gods do not interact with humanity in a way that dispenses undeserved rewards (I can certainly agree with the idea that the gods do not hand out divine salvation).  Or, I might accept the idea of grace in a manner similar to that of a Christian (and I have had conversation with people that take this position as well)–the gods do gift us (well, more specifically their followers) with things we do not deserve (fortune, good fortune, etc).  And, for both of these groups, we humans certainly give grace to our respective gods in the form of worship, reverence, and offerings.

But…I’m not a traditional sort of polytheist (one might argue I’m no kind of polytheist at all, though that seems to ebb and flow like the tide, and will surely be discussed again and again as my understanding of deity is constantly evolving), so it should come as no surprise that my idea of grace is a bit non-traditional.  We live in a state of grace.  That grace is bestowed upon us by virtue of the gods.  We are given undeserved gifts.  Incredibly undeserved gifts–water, earth, air, the sun, the moon, the rock, the tree, the sea gull, the dolphin, the bear, the bee, one another.  We do nothing to deserve these things–they are a gift (as is our very existence) of Nature.

And if grace is both given and received, we need to start doing a better job at giving some.  Reverence is not enough.  Worship is not enough.  Sacrifice is a good start, but still not enough.  I believe (to borrow some Sophocles) that if the gods help them that help themselves, then we have a duty to help those that cannot help themselves.  We who have been given the gift of (relatively) good health and (relatively) good fortune, can start by being the physical hands of the gods in doing the physical work that they cannot in this world.  In the context of a bioregional theology, that means doing the work of Rock and Tree and Ocean and Mankind for the rocks and the trees and the ocean and one another.

*Note–I once wrote a post about what Pagans could learn from Christians…some of these ideas and words are taken from that post*

this has been a blog post for the Pagan Blog Project

This has been a blog post for the letter G for the Pagan Blog Project


The Wonderful World of Witches: Portraits of English Pagans

thalassa:

How fabulous!

Originally posted on LIFE:

Just about 50 years ago, in the fall of 1964, LIFE magazine published what must have felt to the venerable weekly’s long-time readers like a strikingly weird feature. Titled “Real Witches at Work,” the piece included photographs of modern-day British pagans — doctors, housewives, nurses, teachers — celebrating their ancient rites, dancing around fires and generally behaving like perfectly normal, faithful worshippers of the sun, the moon and Mother Nature have been acting for thousands of years.

Today, of course, when magic, the supernatural and the occult are central elements of some of pop culture’s most familiar (and profitable) franchises, and Wiccans are more likely to be found serving on the local school board or city council than practicing their beliefs in secret for fear of being “found out,” an article on real, live witches would excite little more than a shrug and a meh. In the early 1960s, however — and certainly in…

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Preserving Pagan Papers

thalassa:

A wonderful and thoughtful post.
Its never too early to start thinking about these things, and HecateDemeter brings up some points that even those of us that might have preparations in place (a must when you have kids) might not have thought of…

Originally posted on hecatedemeter:

trust-and-estates

One of the themes at this year’s Sacred Space conference turned out to be legacy. We are now losing many of our Pagan elders at a rapid pace. A new generation of cradle Pagans and of Pagans who came to these religions, not through secret initiations or the occasional book found in some long-since-closed occult book store, but through the internet, tv, or their out Pagan friends are coming into their own.

What will our elders leave behind for this new generation?

Several years ago, at another Sacred Space conference, John Michael Greer talked about his work to preserve the (often) typewritten and/or mimeographed papers of 1950s, ’60s, and 70s Pagan groups: boxes left to moulder in someone’s basement, files saved at the last minute from non-Pagan relatives who had no idea that they were about to throw out, for example, the last remaining set of instructions for a…

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Pagan Blog Project 2014: C – Crystals

thalassa:

*adorably fabulous*

Originally posted on drink tea, dream loftily, repeat. >>impossibly human<< :

Just a quick and dirty little rhyme for C…and yes, ‘botheration’ is a word!

Amethyst is a calming stone,
Bloodstone lets your courage known,
Carnelian carries the message of love,
Dendritic Agate resembles a tree’d grove.

Emerald is a blissful gem,
Fluorite does not condemn,
Garnet enhances ones internal fire,
Howlite dispels selfishness and ire

Ivory leaves anxiety behind,
Jasper, of which there are many kinds,
Kyanite facilitates mediation,
Labradorite facilitates transformation.

Moonstone is laden with feminine energy,
Nephrite balances opposite synergy.
Obsidian grounds your heart to Earth,
Pyrite increases your wallet’s girth.

Quartz is master of them all,
Rhodochrosite answers a healer’s call,
Schorl repels negativity,
Topaz promotes creativity.

Ulexite magnifies a botheration,
Vanadinite provides deep meditation.
W, X, and Y have no common minerals,
Zoisite brings out your potential.

PBP2014d

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