REFLECTIONS:

From the Heart/Mind of H.A.G.+

 

 

 

Avatar as The Hero's Journey

 

 

 

 

 

 

YouWho -

Seek out the inspiring shock of freshly minted wisdom...
(mind) mined from your investment in you... 

the Initiating Fire of the Awakening Heart-Mind
Surges with a Rhythm of Wholeness...
Throbbing with Full Faith into Willing Hands...
a Focused Flow where Everything Comes together...
a state-of-mind where no Becomes YES...
where blindness Transforms into Clear Vision...
where damage is Redeemed...
where the travails of Life's Journey will enjoy a Welcome Rebirth
& the clenched question Opens in the house of the Sublime... 

Will You?...
Invoke this Blessing to Call that Wholeness Home...
H.A.G. 

 

 

at dawn the sun rises naked & new...

i open myself & am entered by light...

this is the joy...

the slow awakening into fire

as 1 by 1 the petals open

& the fingers that held

the secret tight...unfurls...

i let go of the past & release the fragrance of flowers...

H.A.G. 

 

 

 

 

Earth Day Spring-Tide Labyrinth

 

The labyrinth is an ancient symbol that relates to wholeness.
It is a tool of Mystery, which is anchored in the Earth.
Combining the imagery of the circle
& the spiral into a meandering but purposeful path,
it represents a journey to our own center
& back again out into the world; much like the seed in spring.

Labyrinths have long been used as meditation & prayer tools.
It is an archetype with which we can have a direct experience.
Walking the labyrinth can be considered an initiation,
awakening the Divine knowledge encoded within our DNA;
a sacred geometry revealing the presence of a cosmic order
connecting us with the deeply rooted urge to honor
the Sacredness of All Life. The labyrinth experience
is a potent practice of Self-Integration
as it encapsulates the spiraling journey in & out of incarnation.

"Solvitur Ambulando... it is solved by walking"

Besides being a body prayer, a walking meditation,
& a potential spiritual experience,
another dimension of the Labyrinth for schools
(according to educational kinesiology reports)
is to provide a balancing for the student,
leading to improved concentration in the classroom.

Labyrinths date back to early Egypt, Peru, India, Maya,
and Native American. The
Hopi medicine wheel is a labyrinth, 
& ancient labyrinths are found in Brazil, Ireland, Italy, Russia,
Iceland, North Africa and Southeast Asia.

The historical diversity of labyrinths is reflected in their varied uses,
from representing special cities, such as Troy,
to keeping time (Chinese incense labyrinths),
protecting fishermen and shepherds
(over 500 stone labyrinths along the Scandinavian coastline), 
& representing the spiritual path to the holy center
(House of Iitoi and Chemin de Jerusalem).

Walking the labyrinth is another way of tapping into forces beyond
our normal conscious mind. It takes us to some ancient part
of ourselves, as old as the turning of the planets and stars,
as old as the Goddess - & the primal Earth energies...
back when night was dark, & people knew that the forces of nature 
are a part of us & we are part of Her.
This is something lost in our modern world, 
& the imbalance that it causes cries out for resolution.
That's why the labyrinth touches so many people so forcefully.

With this simple yet potent honoring of the Spring impulse,
we ring the bells of hope; giving our community the opportunity
to experience the potency & fullness of the Spring-Tide season...

Spring Labyrinth Chant*:

Balance for the Earth-
Light taking form-
Rising to Rebirth-
Spirit seed Reborn
Sun & Moon dancing in the Springtime-
Sun & Moon dancing in the Springtime
Flower Stars Return-
Flower Stars Return...

Inspiration for the 'Spring Labyrinth song' -

"Offspring of all the worlds
thou form of light
firm framed by Sun with Luna's might..."
~Rudolf Steiner's Easter poem
H.A.G. 

 

 

Traditions abound on St. Patrick's Day, including the wearing of the green, 
& watching for leprechauns, while drinking green beer...

The story of St. Patrick tells us that he was born in Roman England,
sometime around 373 C.E. Most historians believe that his name
was actually Maewyn, although he used the Roman name Patrick.
His father may have been a Roman soldier serving in Britain.
While he was with his family in Wales, he was kidnapped 
& sold into slavery in Ireland.

Eventually he escaped his captors & fled to Gaul or France,
where he found his new faith of Christianity. Patrick claimed that God 
gave him visions & called him to return to Ireland & convert the Irish
from Paganism to Christianity. Interestingly enough, Patrick's family
was Pagan, & worshipped a pantheon of Gods & Goddesses, &
he was known to incorporate pagan rituals, myths & beliefs into
his Christian preaching. By the time of his death, he had merged
many elements of Paganism & Christianity & set up monasteries
staffed by Irish clergy trained in this blended wisdom.

It is the tiny 3 leaf shamrock which ties together St. Patrick 
& the Goddess Brigid. Patrick used the shamrock to explain the Trinity.
Yet, the shamrock had already long been a sacred plant to the Celts.
It was believed that the shamrock symbolized the power of
the Triple Goddess Brigid. As the Goddess of healing, farming & smith-craft,
a sacred fire was kept burning in Her temple in Kildare to honor these 
3 sacred gifts. It was Her Sacred Fire that would transform the long
Irish winter, to bring back the spring & the lush fields of blooming shamrocks. 
Later, when the Catholic Church 'transformed' the Goddess Brigid 
into a Christian Saint, they built a convent over her shrine in Kildare,
& established a ritual called "The Day of the Christian Bonfire of the Celts" 
celebrated on the same day that the Druids had always built fires
throughout the countryside in honor of the Triple Goddess. Catholic tradition
also required that St. Brigid be venerated by the Irish in the same manner
that the Virgin Mary was throughout Europe. She was referred to as
the Mystic Mother & Bride of St. Patrick. So, when St. Patrick died
on March 17, it became a celebration to honor Brigid as well.

St. Patrick was perhaps best known for driving the snakes out of Ireland.
The fascinating thing about this feat is that, according to biologists,
there have never been any indigenous snakes in Ireland...Many scholars
today believe this to be a symbol of Christianity driving out Paganism, 
since one of the symbols of the Druids was the snake...

St. Patrick's death is thought to have been on March 17, 461 C.E,
which was a Holy Day in Ireland until about a thousand years ago,
when it morphed into being an Irish national day of pride...
Erin Go Bragh...
H.A.G. 

 

 

Hello, i am Skadi Yaga, the Winter Witch...
i've been asked to make a guest appearance today,
but since Spring is imminent, i'll soon be retiring from my public work
to begin the research, meditations, & prayers that will prepare
for the new round of therapeutic magic i'll offer next winter...
but i'm still available for a while longer to help you
finish any work you've been doing in the following areas:
building solid psychological foundations,
taking total responsibility for your fate,
pruning away extraneous wishes & dead-end dreams,
& getting down to the core of every issue.
How have you been progressing on those tasks?
If you need a boost, send out a telepathic request for me
to appear in your dreams & i'll be there...
you should know, of course, that I have passed my scepter over
to my Spring Sister, Esther Ostara, Queen of the Thaw,  
who is waiting for you to call

H.A.G. 

 

 

Peace & Freedom -
like a fierce hummingbird
i free the flowerets...
my heart a wild beating jewel
encased in frantic feathers...
i hover near the nectar
& drink deeply in my swoon...
the dark fruit smeared
with pollen & perfect peace...
see you there...
Blessings &
Peace -
H.A.G. 

 

 

 

the circle never stops
even as we bite our own tails
the eternal song spirals thru
the collective throat
raw & open
like a coyote in communion
with the ancient moon-tides...
a rhythmic rant
of defiance & adoration...
see you there...

H.A.G.
 

 

 

O to Be Infused
In the melodious tonal clouds
set flying from the Maestro’s mouth
as the fox canters
with wicked trickster style
& perfect precision...
the Huntress in sacred chase
setting the pace of the race
to triple the tune
& melt the moon...
INFUSIONS on the March wind...

 

H.A.G.

 

 

neon bubbles spitting Ultra-light
flamed forth from
your hot head
into manifestation...
daring brightness to glow the night
with black light
& dancing dark delight...
see you there...
xox

H.A.G.

 

 

Treat your Desires
as Sacred Rocket Fuel...
If you choose to give it a Whirl -
don't plan for a short sweet burst of adrenaline -
Be Ready for a long, rollicking Balancing act...
Turning all of your pretty good, but half-baked notions
into a few brilliant, fully formed bullet points...
Melting Down
your hundreds of wishy-washy wishes
to recast them into 3 Driving Desires...
Lasering Your Focus...
Acting with Fierce Clarity...
As you Psyche yourself up for a major campaign
to cut the crap
so Your Essence can Shine...

It's time
You Acknowledged
that You Are a Miraculous Work of Art,
a Masterpiece unlike any other ever created...
 
"Be Yourself" - The Self that says thank you to the wild irises,
& the windy rain & the people who grow your food...
The Big "S" Self who is joyfully struggling to Germinate
the Seeds of Love & Beauty
that are packed inside every moment...
the Spiritual Freedom Fighter
who's scrambling & finagling
& Conspiring to shower your Creative Self
with Thriving Effloresce
& Profound Perennial Blessings...


& All ways Peace -
H.A.G. 
 

 

Greetings Deep Leapers  -

March is full of 'Holy Days'...
finding voice through many cultural expressions...
for instance the 15th is the famous Ides of March...
which we all know as the day Julius Caesar
was warned by the soothsayers to beware...
but did you know that according to the ancient Roman calendar,
the Ides of March was considered New Year's Day...
& marked the 1st day of Spring...!
the 20th (the Prophet Muhammad's B-day, Maundy Thursday, Vernal Equinox)
also happens to be the Iranian New Year celebration Norooz, or 'New Day'...
this tradition of honoring the rebirth of nature 
is commemorated by all the major cultures...
Here on this side of the world we call it
the Vernal Equinox, Festival of the Trees, Ostara, Lady Day...
for us it's calculated by the solar progressions...
when the Sun enters the 1st sign of fiery Aries...
(although Easter is always the Sunday after the Full Moon)
now vernal means green right, so it's not too far fetched to see
a connection with St. Patrick's day on the 17th
with it's emphasis on the shamrock & the wearing of the green...
& those snakes he drove out of Ireland? 
~a symbol of transformation & regeneration...
2 other Catholic holidays also get mixed up in this
ancient symbolism of Spring's fertility...
March 25th is called the 'Annunciation of Mary'...
this is the day that the angel Gabriel announced that Mary...
the Christian version of The Great Mother Goddess,
was pregnant...with the sun of god no less...
who is born of course 9 months later on Dec. 25th...
How's that for a nice little Spring fertility symbol...!
so let's Leap into a March with the spirit
in the many expressions of the One...
as we Immaculately Conceive of
the rebirth of ourselves...

H.A.G.

 

Like the break O day I come...
I hear your call my sweet city Druids
like the cockerel, calling forth the sun,
herald of the new day...
& you see, we're standing at the threshold,
that mysterious, luminal place,
the halfway point between winter & spring,
where anything's likely to happen
& most certainly will if we make it so...
yes like a fiery arrow, I am come,
to kindle within ya a new vitality...
Can you feel the upwelling,
like a tiny spark looming up
from the coals of the home fires...
Forth-flaring from the sheltering-soil like sap rising
Swift-sprouting like a crocus in the snow...
Aye, you see, tings are shifting already,
for now it is I that's calling the deep part of you
to come forth, Like the snake
coming up from it's hole, Ignited by the passion of purpose...
Ah but tis cold & dark still...
so come, sit awhile in the mantle of my hearth fires,
Tis always a blessing to be with your clan mates...
Go on, Feel the warmth gracing your hands,
preparing them for the work ahead...
aye let yourself melt, like a bees wax candle
releasing the sweet honey essence of inspiration,
your deep creative power quickening & awakening...

...& now I ask ya, to ask yourself, do you chose, to go further
& brave my fires of transformation?
aye these flames can get a wee-bit-hot,
like the fires of Hades itself some say...
will you feed the forge-fire,
& Become One with the Sacred Flame...
malleable & ready for change...?
can you feel the fire of life rising in the blood...?
do you want to feel the fires of love stirring in your heart?
will you call forth the fires of initiation to burn away all dross,
in the molten golden glow of Divine affirmation,
purifying & self blessing...?
will you take my name & become
"One Who Exalts Yourself"
for now is the time of Re-Dedication...

you are invited to forge & shape yourself
into the tools of your own self-same destiny...
will you kindle with me, a need-fire,
as a welcoming beacon, to call back,
your dormant power, to heat up, your potential,
& re-seed your creativity...?
will you step up & begin to be
the change you want to see in the world...?
can you be the hammer & anvil to your own destiny,
shifting, tooling, shaping, crafting, molding life-force into gold...?

let me find my way
to the well
that my heart may sing
like a bell
let me find my way
to the fire
to live
my hearts desire...

until then...

BrightBlessings &
Peace -

H.A.G.

 

 

 

 

"Holy water...Sacred Fame
Brigid We Invoke your Name
Bless my Hands, my Head, my Heart
Source of Healing, Song & Art"
 

I know, it's easy to forget at this time of year
when the skies are steel gray & the ice crystals bite,
that stirring in the cold winds, is the spark of spring --
waiting - to be ignited by the passion of our purpose...
can you feel the energy of the earth...Quickening...
i feel it groaning & stretching in the earth of my body...
like a snake trying to shed its skin...
dancing in the silent belly of February,
& yes, She Drums in the womb of her slumber...
'so much to do...so much to be'...
Can you feel Her growing rhythms...?
Her song ever sung... 'Being is Becoming'...
She...has many names...
with the 1st promise of Spring we call Her,
Brigid...Goddess of the Forge, & the Sacred Well...
Great Goddess of Healing, of Creativity & Poetry...
whose feast-day marks the waxing light...
called by some, Candlemas, others, groundhog's day,
still others, Imbolc...the lambing season...
the time of year when the belly of the great mother
quickens with the growing light...
a time to purify & get fertile...
so lets, charm the plow...& kiss the candle...
to re-kindle, a need-fire...as a welcoming beacon...
to call back, our dormant power...to heat up, our potential,
& re-seed our creativity...
as we add fuel to the fire of our community...
one spark warms us all...a purifying fire, that burns clean
& opens the way to our Ritual of re-Dedication...

 

I SAW BRIGIT
MAKING AN ANGEL IN THE SNOW
SHE CALLED HER SHADOW
& THEY DANCED TOGETHER
BANISHING THE WINTER
HER SONG ECHOING
IN THE ARCTIC ACOUSTIC
WAS LIKE A CRISP ICICLE
TRACING AN IMAGE OF THE SUN
ON THE SNOW

yes...this time of year is about the promise of spring...
as we step out of the center point of the dark half of the year...
preparing for growth & renewal...
performing the ancient rituals of spring cleaning...
purifying & anointing the body electric...
awakening the spirit within...
a time of spiritual re-dedication...
of self blessing & initiation...
of affirming & energizing creative work...
a time of blessing the seeds & consecrating the garden tools...
of calling forth & rekindling the sacred fires...
ancient symbol of invigoration...of Becoming...of rebirth...
so let the Women Gather & Open to Mystery -
the inspiring Alchemy of Brigid...
that we may heal ourselves & each other...
that we may see our creativity become fertile...
enflaming us with the passion of our purpose...
looking within...we let the rhythm purge & purify our lives...
making us fertile ground for the new beginnings of spring...

BRIGID TAKE US HIGHER
SET FIRE TO OUR DESIRE...

BrightBlessings &

Peace -
H.A.G.
 

 

stillness listen -
The Hag goes to seed & becomes bone...
a rich black loom
containing the seed of our own rebirth...
Let us release ourselves
from the outer world for a sacred moment,
that we may conjure
our own immaculate conception,
Surrendering to the dreaming,
to celebrate the dark
where the inner life is honored & nurtured by the child within...
Energizing Hope for the Sun's return & the Earth's renewal
we make a 'spiritual cradle'
a psychic space in the cold black frozen places,
that seem devoid of life,
but they are really just sterilized,
a clean slate,
ready for the newly conceived light
to be made manifest...
Let the Power of community
lead us from the darkness
into the light of the Moon
where our desires gestate
& grow into fullness... 


H.A.G.

 

 

 

 

The Rhythm Method

The drum breathes
The Heart drums
Words  Silenced
The hands speak

The beat moves
Unleashing Love 
Time-space loose
Loses control

Pounding percussion
Purpose & passion
Enter the place
of Rhythm

Enter the space
Embrace
A piece
Of Peac
e

H.A.G.
 

 

 

 

 

 

My eager Heart Aspires
To Be a Torch...
To bear the Spirit's light
Into the dark night
of a wintry world womb...
to Bless & to be Blessed..
to bare Bright shoots of Soul
Deep into the Garden bed of Gaia...
   Shining up from the ancient dark
   Mary is whispering with the women
   Softly singing the Inner meaning -
   The Word of Wisdom Resounding
   thru The Vast & Holy Dark...
   Stillness waiting to impart
   The sweet mystery
   of your Dancing Heart...

come on
let's go Spelunking...
diving into the depths
as if we are
snatching raw
truths fresh from eternity...

see you there...
Blessing
s &
Peace - 
H.A.G.
 

the oblique Sun of Mid-Winter
draws in it's breath
before birthing the New Light...
at this time of deep night...
the dark of the vast universe between stars...
the dark of the deep sea...
the dark mystery of the seed
& the waiting womb
of inner renewal...
Entering into the Longest Night,
Entering into the Birth of Light
the little drummer boy trances
& bells ring in crystalline truth...
Consecrating the Nativity
of a new Solar year
with much jubilant singing & dancing
in Yule-Tide Exultation
of
the light of Transformation...

Blessings of the Season & 
Peace -

H.A.G.
 

pleasurePilgrim -
live in Rhythm...
like a steadfast mountain...
within the clarity of boundless Air... 
blazing with the Fires of Will...
Flowing like the sound of Water...
alive with Infinite Love & Gratitude...
inside & all around...
stretching out striving
toward a shared creation
our breathing enters 
the elaborate give-and-take...
this opening to Sun & Moon,
day & night...in Balance Be...
winter, summer, storm, still ---
a tranquil Chaos going... 
coming with wilderness
& active peacefulness...
This purposeful turmoil...
this everything Dance...

H.A.G.

 

 

a circle of friends & family...
a bountiful blessing that gladdens the home...
nourished by this family of choice...
this community we create together...
a ThanksGiving communion...
feeding the heart...we share more then bread & wine...
our lives intertwined...celebrating births & deaths...
the joy & pain of change & growth...
the rhythm of the passing seasons...
grateful always to the 4 quarters that square our circle...
grateful for the treasures of this earth & beyond...
for the spiritual bounty
that heals & honors the ancestors of this great planet
from generation to generation...
from this hardy & generous cornucopia
may we receive our true abundance...
& may the human spirit serve
to help it grow ever stronger...
in the cold winter to come
may we be grounded
& protected from that which would harm us...
like the mother earth protects & gives birth to this soul-food...
the staff of life...the amber waves of grain...
reaching up from our roots in the earth...
to re-claim our roots from the sky...
& so with a royal nod to the round table...
laden with lasagna...
which is a Thanksgiving tradition from my Italian heritage...
& steaming hot bowls of Shepard's pie
from my Irish mother's side...
the Lucchesi - Archer - GINSBERG clan
wishes you all peace & blessings...
& many thanks...
digest well...

xox
H.A.G.
 

 

 

 

The Real Halloween  

Ghosts and goblins, witches on broomsticks, pumpkins, candy and spiderwebs…it’s that time of year again.  Halloween—probably every child’s favorite holiday, combining the irresistible attractions of dressing up in costume and gorging on candy.

 But there’s a deeper spiritual meaning that underlies the holiday for Pagans and real Witches—those who follow earth-based Goddess traditions that predate Christianity. As we in the northern hemisphere move into the time of cold and the dark of winter, we celebrate our New Year, and honor both death and regeneration.

 In Northern Europe, Samhain (the Celtic term for Halloween, pronounced sow-in as in ‘sour’) was the time when the cattle were moved from the summer pastures to winter shelter. It was the end of the growing season, the end of harvest, a time of thanksgiving, when the ancestors and the spirits of the beloved dead would return home to share in the feast. Death did not sever one’s connections with the community.  People would leave offerings of food and drink for their loved ones, and set out candles to light their way home.  Those traditions gave us many of our present day customs. Now we set out jack-o-lanterns and give offerings of candy to children—who are, after all, the ancestors returning in new forms.

 Death and regeneration are always linked in Goddess thealogy. Birth, growth, death and renewal are a cycle that plays over and over again through natural systems and human lives.  Embracing this cycle, we don’t need to fear death, but instead can see it as a stage of life and a gateway to some new form of being.

So Samhain is a time to remember and honor those who have died, to celebrate their lives and appreciate their gifts, to tell stories about them to the next generation so their memory will not be lost.  In Latino cultures, Dia de los Muertos, Day of the Dead on November 2, is a time to visit the graves of loved ones, to feast there and honor their memory with altars and prayers.  We set up altars in our homes, with pictures and mementos, and in my house, we like to invite friends and family to an ancestor dinner, where we cook traditional foods and share our family stories.

 Samhain is also a time for deep spiritual work.  At this time of year, we say, “the veil is thin that divides the worlds, the seen from the unseen, the day to day from the mysteries.”  In San Francisco, the Reclaiming tradition of Wicca sponsors a big public ritual, where we celebrate the renewal and creativity that emerges from the dark, with elaborate altars, dance, music, culminating in a spiral danced by more than a thousand people that honors the energies of rebirth and renewal.

Halloween, and our traditions, are much misunderstood.  This year, when you hand out candy or shepherd your children through the streets, we invite you to remember the deeper meaning of the holiday: that death is no barrier to love, and every ending brings a new beginning.

 

hey Lady -

Life is on your side. Joy is your birthright.
evil is boring. the universe is Friendly.
cynicism is idiotic. fear is a bad habit. despair is lazy.
In fact, all of Creation Wants You to Succeed...
how would it be to act as if :
the universe is a prodigious Miracle
created for your amusement & illumination...?
imagine that secret helpers are working behind the scenes
to assist you in really living
like the gorgeous masterpiece
you were Born to Be...?
re-train your senses & intellect so you are able to perceive
the fact that life always gives you exactly what you need,
exactly when you need it...? 

what is Abundance?
is it something you can hold in your hand...?
or is it Everything You Hold Dear...?
perhaps it is something your Heart Holds
Your Mind Manifests, & Your Hands Give...?
where exactly does Happiness come from?
that's the riddle You are Invited to Explore & more...
come Map out the Foundations of Your Own Science of Happiness...
get serious about defining what makes You feel good...
what specific experiences Arouse Your deepest Gratification? 
You Can Create a Life of Beauty & Bliss...  

this message is coming to you Live
from your repressed memory of Paradise,
reminding You that All of Creation Loves You very much...
but here's the loaded question:
Are You Willing to start Loving Life Back with an equal intensity?
Half of the Art of Intention
is about being improvisationally Receptive
to life's elaborate scheme to shower you with Blessings...
the other half is about learning to be a co-conspirator
who assists life in doling out blessings,
to help you receive exactly what you need, exactly when you need it...
Visualize Yourself Being Able
to Recognize the raw Truth
about what you really care about,
seeing how you already embody
the Beauty of Your Best Promises
Imagine Yourself Being Appreciated
even as You Inspire Yourself to risk changes
that will Activate more of Your Souls' Code...
Receptivity is not a passive state,
Receptivity is a Robust Readiness...
a Vigorous Intention to Be Awake...
when You are Receptive, You Have Strong Ideas & a Powerful Will,
an eagerness to Share Your Unique Blessings,
animated by the humble certainty that you are learning as you go...
at the Heart of this way of life is an apparent conundrum:
You Can Have Anything you want
if you'll Just Ask for it in an unselfish way...
the trick to making this work is to locate where
Your deepest ambition Coincides with
the greatest gift you have to give...
figure out how the universe, by providing you with Abundance,
can improve the lot of Everyone whose life you touch...
Seek the Fulfillment of Your Fondest Desires
in such a way that You Become a Fount of Blessings...
 

& so it is...

Blessed Be...

H.A.G.

 

 

 

 

beloved morsel -
the wheel of the year turns
& we find ourselves
moving deeper into the AutumnTide
  
the apples fall from the tree
   the corn & grain are gathered in
   the grapes are crushed for wine...
   the Sun God is sacrificed to the night
   & the fertile Mother
   assumes the face of the Wise Crone -
   the Harvest Hag
   challenging us to face our shadow...
& so we begin our journey,
like Persephone
into the dark of the year...
   feel your power go within
   like the seed planted deep
   within the darkness of the Earth...
we must be initiated
into these fruitful mysteries
before we can truly celebrate
life’s renewal...

when the Sun enters the sign of the scales -
it is time to take stock...
are the scales balanced...?
do they tip & spill...?
are they full...?
do we know what to harvest
& what to plow under...?
can we identify & cut away
outworn habits & emotional baggage
that can choke our growth...?
 GUIDE US, OH ANCIENT GRANDMOTHER
 AS WE WALK THE WILD PLACES WITH OUR RHYTHM…
 GATHERING SEED PODS & DRIED HERBS 
 WITCH WE PLANT IN THE DARK WOMB OF OUR DRUM
 TO PLAY A HEALING SONG THAT TAKES ROOT
 IN OUR DEEP secret PLACES...
 EMBRACING THE RHYTHMS OF AUTUMN…
& So It Is...Blessed Be…
& Peace -

H.A.G.

 

 

woman -
inner adventures call from the corn
opening your ear
to ripe kernels of ancient truth
tapping on your drum until you hear...
dancing thru you 
like a star moving West...
following the Sun
to a new frontier...
how would it be
to listen...?
could you align yourself
with a life-giving source of light & energy...?
could you do something that fills you
with warmth & vitality...?
could you delve 
& dig into the dirt
to harvest your heart -
the most practical manifestation
of divine intelligence
you know...?

"The first duty of love is to listen."

Blessings of the Harvest
& Peace -
H.A.G.

 

fellow ship -
Holiness comes wrapped in the ordinary... 
a cool glass of fresh clean water...
a cyclone in the city...
a child singing...
There are burning bushes all around you...
Every tree is full of angels...
Hidden beauty is waiting in every crumb...
Life wants to lead you from crumbs to angels, 
but this can happen
only if you are willing 
to unwrap the ordinary 
by playing with it long enough 
to harvest its treasure... 

~H2om~

i am the liquid of life
a body of water
the must dark mirror of substance...
miraculously transmutable...
do you see me flowing?
yet & still i am frozen solid,
now, i am, the rising steam...
One Primal Water
the element of creative potency
the matrix of all matter...
& when the surface
reflects the ripple
of intention,
the sigh of the great sea

is the echo of our healing
 

H.A.G.

 

 

You are 

gourmet sea salt that has been hand-harvested

on a warm, breezy afternoon in late summer

from a pristine marsh in Brittany...

You are

raw & elegant - primal & pure - 

a basic necessity - but exquisitely unique.

will you share

your sublime tastiness 

with the Tribe that treats you

as both a valuable spice & an essential condiment...?

 

H.A.G.

 

You want Hot Gold Secrets

to Ripen in your dark candy soul?

Let your Heart-Pulse study

the Memories that sing in the Great Inland Sea

for teachings about Moon Tides & Puzzle Master Victories...

Extract a Fresh Green Why
from the book of storms you dreamed about...

& when the flower clouds soar over your shadow,

& your Wish Crayon

has turned into a prism of warm moist roars,

you'll know exactly how to look thru the Sun

to the other side of your best fear...

to see your Face Reflected

in the Face of the Blue Buddha Moon

thru the eyes of a Trance-Dance-Drummer... 

 

Your own personal Prayer Warriors

are sending you surges

of the Smartest Love ever Conjured up,

thru every fearless Rhythm... 

so Connect-up, with this sweet & crunchy 

fierce-force

of  Wise-tech Magick,

& let your Heart Be Transfigured

into a wattage-wild broadcasting tower

dosing your DNA 

with wave after wave

of Primal Adoration & Appreciation...

Open yourself to this Gift, if you Will...

It's as real as a Thunderstorm,

as Potent as the Buddha's Libido

& as True as You...

 

H.A.G.

 

 

 

Haiku’s, ants & worms

Buddha-like the Moon sitting

All have the same face

 

In the spider's web
An entangled worm still fights
Soon the BLUE full moon

In pain laughing Buddha Yawns

 

Sing through the darkness
A pleasing sweetness of sound
Softening the night

 

On Buddha’s birthday

Sing spring beneath a full moon,

On Buddha’s deathday

Enlightenment in the Lake

Another sunset

 

H.A.G.

 

 

 

MOTHER'S DAY

 

VOID

THE MOTHER STATE

MATRIX OF MATTER

MISTRESS OF TIDES

THAT FLOW & EBB & FLOW &

NEVER CEASE

SOURCE

& FIERY CREATRIX

CONSUMING YOURSELF

TO GIVE US WARMTH & LIGHT

NURTURING HEARTH

FUELING THE FORGE

BUILDING THE SERPENT

IN A BONFIRE OF JOY

RAGE   RAGE   RAGE

WOMB  BELLY  BREAST

VULVA   BLOOD  &  BONE

CLAN MOTHER

QUEEN OF HEAVEN & HELL

YOU ARE THE TURNING SPIRAL

THAT WHIRLS IN & OUT OF EXISTENCE

WHO’S WINKING EYE

IS THE PULSE OF BEING.

GREAT SEA

MARAH THE BITTER ONE

OLDER THAN TIME

YOU ARE ALL

ANCIENT & FORGOTTEN THINGS

THE GREAT DEEP

WHERE IN OUR ROOTS ARE CAST

FULL MOON & FOUNTAIN

MOTHER WISDOM

EMPRESS

WINDOW

SPACE THAT FLOWS

& SPILLS OUT THE BIRTHING BATH

ON TO LIFE'S’ ALTAR –

THE BELLY OF MOTHER-MASS.

FROM THAT TUNNEL THAT RIPENS

A MAGIC FRUIT

COMES

THIS BODY & BLOOD

OF OUR PRIMAL BIRTH RITE.

TENDERED WITH MOTHERS’ MILK

THIS OFFSPRING GROWS ANOTHER BRANCH

ON THE TREE

THAT GIVES SUCCOR

TO THE MILKY WAY

~~~ & Hazel.

peace

 

 

 

Beltane...the old Celtic name for May Day, means bright fire or fire of Bel, the name of the Solar force...

who’s feast marks the beginning of the 2nd half of the year...Wood from 9 sacred trees is gathered, & the great Bel-fire is built & ritualistically ignited by the High priestess or Arch-Druid…the people would jump these ‘need-fires’ for fertility, healing & protection…Torches lit from it were carried home to re-light the hearth fires...they would walk the animals in-between them to ensure a productive season...this is the mating season after all for man & beast…there were other May Day customs, like walking the circuit of one’s property, repairing fences & boundary markers, processions of all kinds, archery tournaments, Morris dances, sword play, & of course making merry with music & drinking...May morning is a time when the veil between the worlds can easily be pushed aside…but instead of the spirits coming into our realm from the other side, which is the case with Halloween, the polar opposite of Mayday on the wheel of the year…the fairies can enchant us over into their mystical realms…this is a magical time…perfect for gathering ‘wild’ water...especially the May morning dew, or water from hidden wells & springs...these wild waters were collected  & used to bath in for beauty, or to drink for health...May Day is considered the start of summer...the time of milk & honey…this sensuous fertile energy is totally universal…& can be applied on many different levels…when we acknowledge these creative forces in the dance of our lives, it takes us to our own personal, modern-day version of dancing around the maypole...where we weave & combine the opposing energies within ourselves...blending them into one balanced source...so yes, whether you knew it or not, there was at least one song that played in your sub-conscious head that 1st day of May, when you were the Queen of the May or Jack-in the Green for this ancient May Day ritual…our body like the body of the earth instinctively knows it’s Beltane...the time of vitality & passion & new growth...& the wisdom of our spirit seeks the natural union of polarities that occur at this time...giving us the opportunity for integration, in the alchemical dance of our souls…Because under all the sexual innuendo & frivolity, it’s really all about the inner mystic marriage, the symbolic union of fire & water, opposites complimenting each other, to become one, bringing all the elements into balance...you’ll just have to go dancing naked in the forest preserve on your own time...for now, lets work to unify the polarities of our being, by sparking the new fire of creative fertility & passion...& marrying it with the beautiful, healing waters of compassion & pure love...So we can truly celebrate the marriage feast of our lives, with a grounded, mindful joy...so if it is your will...light your Bel-fire, marry it to the water, by floating it in the chalice of your choice...take the time you need there…to do or not what you will…whisper your marriage vows into the water...or dance the 1st dance...or smash the glass...whatever your ceremony calls for... short simple or silent...it doesn’t matter…a 3 day bacchanal, with dancing puppets…it’s all good...cause it’s all about what’s inside…

Peace & Love -

H.A.G.

 

BELTANE

 

MAY DAY MAYA

PLEIADIAN GODDESS

BRIGHT LIGHT OF THE 7 SISTERS

MOUNTAIN NYMPH TRANSFORMED

WE ASCEND YOUR BEACON MOUND

& KINDLE THERE

THE OAKWOOD OF THE BEL–FIRE

TO RIVAL THE SUN

& CALL THE SUMMER HEAT

 

ZEUS’S LOVER

HERMES’ MOTHER

INSPIRE PROCESSIONS

OF CHIMNEY SWEEPS & MILK MAIDS

TO LEAP THE HEALING FLAMES

&  SKY–CLAD SINGING :

‘ RIDE A COCK HORSE TO BANBURRY CROSS

TO SEE A FINE LADY ON A WHITE HORSE ‘

 

WALK THE CIRCUIT

& BEAT THE BOUNDS

WITH THE YOUNG SUMMER KING

& THE QUEEN OF THE MAY

 

FOR THE FEAST OF FLOWERS

IS CALLING FORTH THE CONSORT

COME, COME, COME, UNTO ME

& CELEBRATE WITH THE ORDERS OF ELEMENTALS

 

BOLD MAIDENS BATHING IN THE DEW OF MAY MORNING

SWORD DANCING & DRINKING

IN DEEP FOREST FRIVOLITY

STRIKING OPEN ANCIENT LEY LINES

IN BULLS EYE ARCHERY

 

MARKING THE UNRESTRAINED TRYST

A MAYPOLE IN HOLY-ROOD- MAS

WRAPPED & WEAVED IN RIBBONS & IVY

FOR THE MAY EVE RITES

 

ROBIN HOOD MAKES READY THE HUNT

MAID MARIAN HAS GONE-A-MAYING

                                                                      

                                                                           -----Lady Hazel                                                                               

 

 

April is the month where the spirit of youth stirs us...
we are drawn outward
into the breeze
awakening our senses...
we ray out like light
into wider dawns
& deeper twilight's...
nature germinates us...
surrendering to it's embrace
with spontaneous devotion
our hearts are @ peace
our freedom reborn...
see you there...
 

 

 

March is abundant with ‘Holy Days’,

finding voice through many cultural expressions…

For instance the 15th is the famous Ides of March; which we all know as the day

Julius Caesar was warned by the soothsayers to beware;

the day he was allegedly assassinated...But did you know

that according to the ancient Roman calendar, the Ides of March was considered

New Year’s Day, & marked the 1st day of Spring...?

The 20th also happens to be the Iranian New Year celebration,

Norooz, or new day…In 622 AD, Mohammed led his followers from Mecca to Medina

to escape assassination…According to the story, when his pursuers reached the cave where Mohammed & his followers had taken shelter for the night, they found a dove nesting in front of it & the entrance covered by a spider's web. So the pursuers passed on, leaving them in peace. Mohammed continued on to Medina, where he & his followers were able to worship freely. Muslims consider this flight -- or Hijrah -- to be the start of the Muslim era & date the beginning of their calendar from it. People worship quietly

on this New Year's Day, which begins with the 1st sighting of the crescent moon...

& in keeping with the rebirth of nature is also considered the 1st day of Spring...

This tradition has been commemorated by all the major cultures of the east...

near, far & middle for centuries...Here on this side of the world we call it the Spring

or Vernal Equinox, Festival of the Trees, Ostara, Lady Day...for us it’s calculated by the solar progressions, when the Sun enters the 1st sign of fiery Aries,

as opposed to the lunar cycle used by the ancients. The Equinox is all about harmony

& balance...that brief yet eternal time of equilibrium, when day & night are of equal length. In the fall, the darkness holds sway...but now for the spring season the light is triumphant...what a perfect opportunity to tap into this celestial energy as it intersects our earthly ecliptic...a perfect opportunity to bring balance into our lives...

harmony into our bodies. We all have a mixture of yin & yang...

darkness & light...female & male energies within us...Do they both have equal say...?

Or is one force overshadowing the other..? Perhaps we are consciously putting more emphasis on one, to help develop that side...or maybe we just feel unbalanced

& we don’t know why..? Are we thinking too much...are we too sensitive...

too busy doing, to just be..? Is your left side tighter or looser then your right...

which side do you part your hair..? Ah ha...these are questions only you can answer for your self...Now vernal means green, right, so it’s not too far fetched to see a connection with St. Patrick’s day on the 17th...with it’s emphasis on the shamrock

& the wearing of the green...St. Patrick, that once pagan boy from Wales,

turned Christian priest, with a vengeance, made it his mission to run the snakes out

of Ireland. Of course no snake was ever native to Ireland to begin with, so we can take this as a metaphor for the conversion of the Pagans; or a more affirming way to look at it is to see the snake as the symbol of transformation & regeneration.

Two other Catholic holidays also get mixed up in this ancient symbolism of Spring’s fertility...March 25th is called the ‘Annunciation of Mary’...annunciation means announcement...so this is the day that the Angel Gabriel announced that Mary, the Christian version of The Great Mother Goddess, was pregnant;

with the son of god no less; who is born of course 9 months later on Dec. 25th

How’s that for a nice little spring fertility symbol...

It is fitting that March is International Women’s month,

since this is the time of the rebirth of nature. It’s a gentle reminder that we give birth to the future. The future is in our hands, the hands of the midwife, the lap of the mother,

the hands of the drummers for peace, the heart & soul of the Goddess in each of us…

So let’s end by clapping our hands, bringing them together to honor ourselves  

& thank the powers of love & light, knowing, that when the sound of the clapping becomes an echo, it’s energy continues & builds…

as we dance in the spirit of the many expressions of the One,

& Conceive the rebirth of ourselves

Peace & Blessed Be…

 H.A.G.

   

 

Purim: Take Back the Girls

The Womantasch Triangle: Vashti, Esther and Carol Gilligan
(A Developmental Look)

by Susan Schnur

 

The figures of Vashti and Esther, clearly in origin full-moon pre-spring relatives of the ancient mythological lifecycle goddesses, come down to us, in the Book of Esther and in rabbinic midrash, so disfigured and devalued that it is hard to know how to begin resurrecting them.

But let's start with Harvard psychologist Carol Gilligan, whose research shows us that females' self-esteem is highest before puberty, but then we turn into women, males enter our consciousness, and it all goes to hell.

FIRST VASHTI

In the Book of Esther, Vashti is that pre-pubescent Gilliganesque girl-self-confident and self-determining (who does what's right for herself and says "no" to the boys), but she is punished for her assertiveness, and she therefore "grows up," as it were, into Esther, a female who submits much more graciously to patriarchal domination. The rabbis take an almost erotic delight in hating Vashti and they kill her off (Lilith redux); the midrash lasciviously describes Vashti's head "brought before the King on a platter." Ahasuerus is neatly freed up to start all over again with the new, young trophy wife named Esther.

So where does Vashti, the dead girl, go? The Book of Esther has at its thematic core the same ancient fertility myths in which one goddess or another serves metaphorically to explain winter's death and spring's resurrection. If Vashti were, for example, Demeter's daughter Persephone (instead of being Esther's disowned 'daughter'), she would go down to Hades and then eventually rejoin her mother on Earth. If she were the young Inanna, she would remove herself from ordinary life (the Megillah's harem is a distorted echo of this), and descend into the Underworld, where she would sacrificially rot on a peg, be transformed, and return to Earth a larger, wiser, more creative goddess-no longer patroness of fertility alone, but also of death and resurrection, the new ruler of the now-conjoined Earth, Sky and Underworld. From the Underworld, one returns bearing gifts-not shalach manos, mind you, but gifts only acquirable down under: Wisdom, Letting Go, Awe and Gratitude.

Inanna's "rotting" is an initiation into understanding the inexorable cycle of life-that each one of us is born, ages and dies, only to be born again from the earth in some new form-maybe as humus, maybe through our children. Death is a part of life. Vashti, in parallel fashion, makes a sacrifice in Hell (in this case, the palace) too: she says "NO"-understanding full well that she will suffer terrible consequences. But unlike Inanna, the wisdom Vashti derives from her self-determination is confiscated by the text and never conveyed to her 'daughters.' Vashti's resurrection is that she exits, stage left, only to be replaced in the next act by a freshly minted queen with a new name and no memory.

Let's imagine, say, that Vashti had been a part of the ancient Greek women's ritual of the Thesmophoria. She would not, then, have resurfaced solely as a "head on a platter" at the King's supper club; rather, she would have encountered an "older sister" in the Underworld, someone who came before her and is wiser, and who inducts her into wisdom. But the Megillat keeps its significant women isolated from one another, erasing any suggestion that there might be significant female interaction. (In Esther's case, of course, the text goes so far as to make her an orphan.) Hardly anything, as we know, is as scary to patriarchal men as two women alone in a room together. Vide: Lilith and Eve, Sarah and Hagar.

DANCING NUDE

Queen Vashti is summoned by the King to dance nude, in a clear bastardization of fertility myths. Queen Inanna, for example, to jump-start spring's fertility, herself summons King Dumuzi, ordering him to "plow my vulva!"

Vashti's King, on the other hand (not, like Dumuzi, epithetically called "caresser of the navel, caresser of the soft thighs") functions on a stage with no mythological overtones, and the text Vashti finds herself in-a repudiation of Inanna's-seems to take particular sadistic pleasure from disempowering and humiliating her. Vashti's agency is reduced to her ability to say "NO" when the King orders her, a Playboy bunny, to strip before a mob of drunks at his house party.

What's in it for Vashti? She dies-the assertive girl-child dies, the one who is not afraid to be assertive, not afraid to displease the males. The Megillat kills off not only Vashti, but the whole cycle-death, rotting, rebirth, the whole awakening, empowering experience. It's a deliberate theft, a humiliation. She doesn't get to re-emerge as a woman. There ain't no journey at all!

To borrow a phrase from the writer Deena Metzger, "In a sacred universe, she [Vashti] is holy; in a secular universe, she [Vashti] is a whore."

MOTHER AND DAUGHTER

The Demeter-Persephone myth expresses an interesting cultural compromise: the emotional centrality of mother-daughter bonds (hence Persephone gets to spend a part of each year with Demeter) and the inevitable severing of that bond when the girl grows up. (Persephone, raped by Hades, eats a seed-ahh, shades of the hamantasch!-and must stay with Hades, Lord of the Underworld, during the other part of the year.)

In the Megillat, however, Vashti is, of course, punished, and is not allowed-ever-to bring her laundry home to Mama Esther's house. Esther's early debutante world coarsely compartmentalizes women, too. Like cattle in a cattle chute, each girl arrives from Harem A, spends one night with King Ahasuerus's (chapter 2:14) and then returns, via chute, to Harem B.

Keeping mothers and daughters apart finds resonance in the story of Zeus and Metis. The pregnant Metis gets tricked by Zeus into becoming small, at which point Zeus swallows her. When the baby, Athena, grows to adulthood, she emerges from her father's head-with no sense that she had ever had a mother who might have taught her anything, or, in any way, 'birthed' her. In this way, women's stories, too, get 'swallowed' by patriarchal ones like the Megillat. Vashti is 'swallowed' up by the story-to keep Esther from picking up any bad habits.

JUST SAY YES

Who among us, as a teenager, hasn't had Vashti' s experience of saying "NO" to a boy and getting punished for it? Really, though, what if Vashti had said "YES"-follow that storyline out. Poor Vashti was double bound; it's lose/lose.

And a final Vashti question: What if the text had let her grow up? When Vashti dies, we girl readers die with her, every goddamn Purim-warned not to take good care of ourselves. Frozen in Vashti-land, banished. What if we let Vashti talk, follow her story? What if we imagine what she might have gone on to do besides getting transmogrified into Esther? What if we let her become herself?

In a sacred universe, she would not be treated like an object by abusive men, she would not be forbidden access to her sister, mother, daughter, be forbidden to take her transformative journey. In a sacred universe, she would be holy.

THEN ESTHER

Purim's origins, scholars generally agree, derive from an ancient full-moon pre-spring Persian holiday; Esther is descended from the Babylonian Ishtar (who derives from Inanna) and Mordechai from the Babylonian Marduk. (These gods are allied against the Elamite goddess, Vashti, and the god Humman, that is, Haman.) Ishtar, a universal lifecycle goddess, also rules the morning star and evening star, so Esther's Hebrew name, Hadassah, means "myrtle," which has star-shaped flowers, and leaves which are vulvate or boat-shaped, again that fertility symbol that goes back over 30,000 years to engravings on cave walls.

Ishtar was a virgin-warrior, and Esther can be seen as a translation of that-compared to Vashti, she's a virgin, and she's a warrior for her people. Ishtar is also the moon goddess, her story described in the moon's phases (for example, an absent moon depicts Ishtar losing her clothes on the way to the Underworld). In the Megillat, the Queen's being ordered to appear in the King's "underworld" nude is a corruption of this.

In the process of mythological assimilation, Ishtar and Isis, over time, take on each other's traits. Esther's capacity to overturn the Jews' fate (the death warrant fatwa put on Jewish heads by Haman) derives from Isis's famous capacity to keep death away from her faithful followers. And Isis's well-known boast, "I will overcome Fate," which she proceeds to do, is echoed in Esther's valiant statement ("If I perish, I perish," chapter 4:16) which the Queen utters when she appears before Ahasuerus without his royal permission. Esther, like Isis, overcomes fate, because the King, against the odds, stretches out to her his golden scepter, thereby allowing her to live. For many women, this part of the Megillat tells a deeply moving Jewish story about female courage.

But unlike the goddess Ishtar, who has power in her own right just like a male god, the less ancient Esther (like the Virgin Mary, who can intercede with God but who isn't God) can only intercede with the King, but has no power for herself.

SEPARATED AT BIRTH

Gerda Lerner, in The Creation of Patriarchy, argues that, over time, the "Great Goddess, whose powers are all-encompassing (mother, warrior, creator, protector), loses her unified dominion, and becomes split off into separate goddesses." Vashti and Esther are heiresses to this split.

Of course, the split becomes a male projection. Men seek the erotic from one source (Vashti, the whore, the mistress), and nurturance from another (Esther preparing banquets at the stove, mother, wife, Madonna). Women live with this split, and we thus lose the ability to connect our own sexuality, our own bodies, to the sacred, to the universe.

For women today, the real loss is not as much the suppression of female rites, as it is the deprivation of consciousness. In other words, it is the rare woman these days, in hating her body, who even thinks to make a connection between her body and the Earth's body, her breasts, vulva, thighs and the Earth's, her seasons and cycles and the Earth's. This is a big loss, both in terms of our self-esteem and sense of well-being, and in relation to women's sense of spiritual connection.

Inanna's sacred erotic experience which brings on April's showers and May's flowers devolves, in the Book of Esther, into Vashti as whore. Queen Esther becomes adored by the rabbis, but Vashti gets split off as a dirty body, coarse nature.

If you have any doubts about the propagandistic effectiveness of Vashti's utter demonization in rabbinic misogynist texts, here's an experiment. This Purim at synagogue, count how many girls dress up as Vashti (zero; just a guess). Ask the little Esthers why they aren't dressed up as little Vashtis. Write down their answers. Ask what Vashti did to make her so "bad." (My daughter's friends generally reply that Vashti "said NO to the King." We discuss whether it is bad to say 'NO' to males. Does that mean you should say 'YES' to males? Etc.) Invite all the little Esthers to your next Rosh Hodesh event, and help them burn all their old misguided answers in a big black cauldron. Call the event "We're All Witches" (all right, "We're All Sisters" will do).

ESTHER'S ANOREXIA

As anyone who has been on the idealized (vs. the devalued) side of the Madonna/whore split knows, it's no picnic being Esther, either. The male rabbis love her (ostensibly because she saved her people), but then the rabbis piggyback other virtues on to the courageous lass just to confuse us: Esther's tiptoeing wifely style, her dependence on the King, her title of 'prophetess' (which is very odd, given that the Megillat is a highly secular book).

Most creepy of all, though, is the rabbis' lewd, peeping Tom'ish interest in exactly how Esther is beautiful. In the midrash, they literally quantify and rank her beauty vis-à-vis other Jewish women, and descriptions of the exact quality of Esther's sexual appeal take up many pages. The rabbis sound remarkably like those classic fathers of anorexic girls who feel compelled to comment to their daughters, "You've gained weight at college," or "Your roommate's a knockout." These contemporary Esther's, as we all know, get their sad revenge.

EARLY SPRING: HEALING THE SPLITS, CIRCLING BACK

Vashti and Esther, of course, are in coalition, not opposition. The journeys of females-Isis, Demeter, Inanna-are not journeys to find answers, they are journeys to gather something together, to make things whole. Even the Shekhina, the female aspect of the Jewish God, gathers up lost souls. Isis gathers up the parts of Osiris. Demeter searches for her daughter. Our themes, as contemporary women, are the same: to restore something that has been separated, to reconnect body and soul, to reunite Vashti and Esther, to integrate and reclaim the feminine that has been lost or abandoned in human history.

Esther must circle back to carry Vashti across the threshold into telling her story. And it is not just the girl's story that must be retold and reheard, it is also our mothers' stories-Vashti, Esther, and their mothers' stories, Ishtar, Demeter, and all the rest.

To be nourished with only male images of what's female and what's divine and what's Jewish is to be badly malnourished.

So let us reclaim the womantasch, and tell the whole Megillat.

 

 

 

Cupid sharpens his arrows in the Light of the Moon...
spacer (1K)

Love is as near as Your next Breath...there's no need

to rush...just Dance intently & with abandon

Towards the Calling

of the HeartBeat You hear in the distance...

 

Closer than your Breath & Older than Death...

It Dreams like a Mountain, Laughs like a River, Prays like the Sun

& Sings the way the Animals Think...

 

Have faith...It is Always

as fresh as

the Beginning of Intimacy...

 

for You

are In Alignment

with the Throbbing Hum

of the Divine Wow...

 

 

yeah YOU - 

The moment is ripe to initiate shifts in the way we create

our closest relationships...For starters, we could change

the words habitually used for "Relationship,"...

how about 'Co-Nexus' , 'MateDate' or 'Cohort' instead..?

& rather than referring to someone as "friend" or "partner,"

we can call them 'Accomplice,' or our 'Freestyle,' or

our 'Lightning'...dead terms like "significant other," "boyfriend,"

"girlfriend," & "spouse" could be banished as well...

In their places, try 'LushBuddy,' 'HeartBeat,' or 'RingDing'...

Feel free, of course, to dream up your own fresh slang...

 

Whirl-Zap-Gush

(the Supreme Being formerly known as God/dess)

has choreographed a rigorous Dance just for you

to perform this Saturday...

it has a Mix of Primal & Elegant Elements;

it is both Meditative & profanely Funny;

Intensely Personal & Joyously Communal...

it's up to you to find a good title for this Mysterious

Free-Form Spectacle:

a. "Bower of Bliss - the Woo Wrangle"

b.  "the Sacred Shimmy Shindy"

c. "Adoration's Rumble - the Moveable Feast"

d. "Holy Imbroglio: Passions Ree-Raw"

e. All of the Above...

just remember:

1. "It only seems kinky the first time."

2. "Even if the voices in your head aren't "real",

they still have some good ideas."

3. "To make your prayers come true,

you have to get off your knees."

4. "Be the good kind of bad."

5. "It's not really a party till something gets broken."

(so come out & break some bad habits)

6. "Shut up & Dance."

 

 

Can you taste it...?

a flavor like ginger peach or vanilla clove or some other blend

of piquant spiciness & smooth sweetness,

keeping you warm & nectarous within...

& while we're in Life's kitchen,

the accessory that may symbolize your

special skills this week

could be a thick porous sponge for maximum absorption

with a scrubby surface on one side for effective cleaning...

& as you stand there at the sink,

the recurring dream you're most likely to dream for the last time,

triumphing forever over the past trauma that originally spawned it,

is the nightmare in which you feel like a cornered animal...

Your haiku of power could be:

'Melodious struggle where the Soul turns crap into fertilizer'...

 

Your Life is a Work of Art

A Craft to Be Sculpted & Mastered

For Bliss has replaced Time

& You are Your Own Destination

 

 

 

 

greetings beloved c0-conSpiritors –

 

a blessing for the “New Year”…

this is a ‘We are Heaven’s Leaven in 2007’ kind of year…

this is a swimming-the-backstroke-through-the-churning-waters-of-the-tunnel-of-love

while wearing-a-medieval-knight's-helmet-&-your-sexiest-underwear kind of year…

this is an all-for-one-&-one-for-all-but-you’re-ultimately-on-your-own kind of year...

     our theme in the coming days is *enchantment on demand*…

we are in an aggressively elegant grace period…

a time when we have the right to insist on being delighted...

it's as if we've been granted poetic license to ask for & receive

not just any old mediocre pleasure, but rather the most intriguing,

& ennobling pleasures of all…

so don't just sit back & hope that sublime fun will accidentally come your way.

Know that you have the authority to command its arrival front & center…

 

H.A.G.

 

 

 

SOL INVICTA { THE FEAST OF THE UNCONQUERED SUN }

 

THE BREATH OF NATURE IS SUSPENDED

IN THE VAST & HOLY NIGHT

WE WAIT WHILE WITHIN

THE DARK KING IS TRANSFORMED

INTO THE INFANT LIGHT

 

THE MOTHER

SLUMBERING THRU THE WINTER OF HER LABOR ABIDES…

HER COLD VELVET CHAOS

INDUCING THE IMMACULATE PROMISE OF LIGHT

 

HER BODY IS SALT

SAVOR ITS PATIENT SONG OF DEATH IN LIFE

PLUNGE INTO HER DORMANT SERUM

& RISE WITH THE MIDNIGHT SUN

 

PAY YOUR PENNY -

RECONCILED PROCEED -

COMMENCE THE JOURNEY STEEP

OF THE CARDINAL EARTH FROM SOUTH TO NORTH

IN ADVENT DEEP

 

WE ARE AWAKE IN THE NIGHT

TO FEAST ON CAKES OF CARAWAY SOAKED IN CIDER…

PASS THE SPARK TO THE NEW WISHING LOG

FOR THE ALL NIGHT VIGIL

FIRE OAK ROOTS IN A CIRCLE

LET THEM BURN UNTIL DAWN

 

THE HUSHED CENTER THICK AS FRUITCAKE

& THE EVERGREEN CIRCUMFERENCE

A LIGHTED WREATH - ARE ONE - FOR ALL

 

A STATE VAST ENOUGH & STILL ENOUGH

TO ALLOW THE POWER OF LOVE

TO RETURN AT LAST

 

LET THE TANG OF JUNIPER & HOLLY

SHOUT WITH INCENSE TO THE COMFORTER

& THE BELLS RING OUT THE WORD -

 

‘THE KING IS DEAD LONG LIVE THE KING’

WE CALL OUT EMMANUEL -

SHEPHERDS QUAKE & SERAPHIM SING

FOLLOWING THE STAR THAT SHOWS US THE HOMELESS AVATAR

OUR WINTER BORN KING

 

EAT PHOSPHORUS WITH THE IVY GIRLS -

AMULET SPRIGS ABOVE THE PORTALS -

TRANSMIT THE RIDDLE OF MISTLETOE WITH WASSAIL KISSES -

& PASS THRU THE GATE OF YULE-TIDE

TO SUCCEED THE ZENITH

& CALL THE SUN RISE

IN CRIMSON SASH & CANDLED CROWN

WITH LUCY BRIDE

 

SHE DANCES THE SILENT SPACE WITH OPEN HANDS

TO SPIN THE WHEEL THROUGHOUT THE LONGEST NIGHT

SINGING ‘HAPPY BIRTHDAY’ SWEET SUN KING

SOON TO REVEAL LOVES PURE LIGHT

 

IN THE VAST & HOLY DARK

THE VAST & HOLY DARK

THE VAST & HOLY DARK

SOON TO REVEAL

LOVES PURE LIGHT

 

IN THE VAST & HOLY DARK

THE VAST & HOLY DARK

THE VAST

& HOLY

NIGHT

 

H.A.G.

 

 

 

Greetings Shape-Shifters –

All Hallows, for me this year, seems to be taking on a quality of

Ready Repose & a Deep Rustling Introspection…

where the ‘Life-Stories’ of the Past are Yearning to be Told

& Heard & Healed…

where the Present is Informed & Celebrated…

where Our Future Self Begins to Be Invoked & Embodied…

where the seeds of Inspiration are Stirred

& Transformation Bubbles up in the Beat…

 

We are a Circle, within a Circle,

with no beginning & never ending"

 

Let’s take our circle into the secret reaches of our inner sanctum…

Penetrate to the heart of the core of the root…

Peer down through the cracks in the surface, all the way to the center…

Treat the darkness there, as the source, of light,

a cleverly disguised treasure, waiting to be discovered, a repository of raw material

that will fuel the fires of inspiration, a place where we can go to practice the high art

of redemption…let’s dare to be curious about the amazing sacraments

that lie beneath the obvious questions…

to open that mysterious door that leads to the even more secret door,

that will take us to the most private, yet inclusive, fertile oasis of all…

as we aspire to wrestle tenderly with the unripe side of our nature,

until it agrees to share its hidden treasures with the rest of us…

then the immediate future, the eternal now, will bring cathartic revelations

leading to spiritual orgasms & ingenious changes

in the way we dance our life…You are potentially a genius, we all are...

Perhaps not in the same way that Einstein & Beethoven were, but still:

We possess some brilliant capacity or set of skills that is exquisitely unique…

We are a masterpiece unlike any other that has ever lived…

& you know what…the precise instructions we need to ripen

into that glorious Genie have always been with us…the master plan…

our special mission…our personal soul code…our secret song, that says,

it's our birthright to dance daily with the Divine Intelligence…

We have the power & the privilege to ask ‘The Source’ very specific questions

about what we need to do NOW in order to activate more of our soul's code,

& to then receive a very specific answer…

 

So what question will you ask the Divine Intelligence,

(whom we shall call Cerridwen, at this New Moon Lodge,

She who wares the face of the Crafty Crone) as You Commune in the Sacred Dance of Yourself?

 

What Choice Crops Will You Offer to the Cauldron of your Deepest Self…?

What shadow stuff will you toss into the melting pot…?

What Healing herbs will you Gather for your Elixir...?

What Alchemy will you Stir into the Spell-Work…?

Are you prepared to:

Change

Transform

Adapt

Evolve

Inspire

Renew…?

 

 ‘Yesterday is ashes, tomorrow wood, only today the fire burns brightly’.

----Native American saying

 

Blessings &

Peace-

H.A.G.

 

 

Wash your brain at least once a month

whether you think it needs it or not…

 

 

The mid-point of summer has passed…& now the days will grow visibly shorter

as we move deeper into the harvest season…

August 1st called by the ancients Lammas day or Loaf-Mass, celebrates

the 1st grain harvest with loaves of fresh baked bread & corn dollies made of braided straw…

for in the cutting of the corn, the seed is gathered in,

which is the promise of future creativity to come…

this is a time of celebration & reflection, when we begin to reap all that we have sown…

Lammas represents the 1st fruits of the union between the fertile Earth Goddess &

Her viral consort, the Green God…

so for our next gathering lets play rhythms that support this Sacred Dance of the creative union

within ourselves & our universe…

 

 

Drum Daughter -

Acquiring problems, it seems, is a fundamental human need…

it can be as crucial to our well-being

as getting food, air, water, sleep, & love…

we define ourselves, through the riddles we attract & solve…
the most creative people on the planet are those

who frame the biggest, hardest questions

& then gather the resources necessary to find the answers…

In Chinese, the word "crisis" is composed of two characters -

one represents Danger, the other Opportunity…

There has been no English equivalent…

YOU now have the boldness, physical vigor, & slightly crazed chutzpah

to accomplish a whole range of precedent-breaking feats -

from halting an abuse of power you've been putting up with…

to overthrowing the soggy status quo

that has watered down your precious passions…

the 1st step, my dear sister, is to Cut The Crap…!

See Past the ‘Drama’, Become Unattached & Free from Reaction…

Be like the child that lets go of the string, releasing the balloon of illusion,

Jumping for Joy, as it Ascends toward the Vast blue Sky of Possibilities…

 

 

 

Are your fears serving you,

by warning you about dangerous places, things, or unsavory people?

Or do your fears prevent you from dancing your dance, living your life,

co-creating with Creation?

The Goddess within wants to tell you that your dance is needed

as part of the whole Dance of Creation.

The Goddess within has begun her dance in your life

to tell you it is time to face your fears.

All that is lurking ominously, either buried deep in your inner darkness or close by,

needs to be stared in the eye & brought into the light of consciousness.

Wholeness is nurtured when you reclaim the pieces of yourself

that you've given over to fear.

Most fears are formless. By naming & witnessing the fear, you gain power.

Wholeness is created when you learn to acknowledge your fears

& dance through them.

 

 

As the power of ‘the 4th

Reverberates in our collective consciousness…

Thinking  PEACE, PEACE, PEACE

While imagining the "bombs bursting in air" 

As beautiful, gentle fireworks of realization & enlightenment,

Going off like light bulbs in American minds…

Working towards a Global Interdependence Independence Day…

A mutual dependency upon the independence of every nation

& its people…Imagine everyone celebrating our differences

with great admiration & respect…

Yes! We can conjure that reality in rhythm with the THUNDER moon

 

 

 

The Berries are Red
 The Honey is Gold
 The Moon has secrets
 Waiting to BEE Told.
Blessings from the Strawberry-HoneyMoon

 

 

hmmm…what to do on Saturday night…?

you could have a picnic at twilight in a secret garden where a sister-stranger feeds you strawberries

& the wind inspires the ancestors thru a cousin’s flute …

you might wander out to the edge where the Sky meets the Great-Inland-Sea

& throw a birthday party for the Queen Bee…

or weave wildflowers in your sleeping child’s hair, while the drums invoke spontaneous strategies

in cahoots with the Wishing Moon…

if you bask in its glow, in a moving dance, to let it saturate every part of your body, you could imagine

that soaking up the lunar vibes will deepen & tone your emotional life, enhance your receptivity,

make you a wiser nurturer, & build up your knack for adjusting deftly to change…

you could tear your eyes away from the terribly obvious & the numbingly familiar…& be willing to be

as serendipitous as you've ever been…to see the truth in the blue flame of a kindred-spirit…

The weird probability is that you could have a piercing insight about the bottom line

while you're wandering free, in a place that's far from the bottom line…

 

 

March is full of ‘Holy Days’...finding voice through many cultural expressions…for instance the 15th is the famous ides of march...which we all know as the day Julius Caesar was warned by the soothsayers to beware...the day he was allegedly assassinated...but did you know that according to the ancient roman calendar, the Ides of March was considered new year’s day...& marked the 1st day of spring...the 20th also happens to be the Iranian new year celebration...Norooz, or new day, which falls around the time of the New Moon in March...& in keeping with the rebirth of nature is also considered the 1st day of spring...this tradition has been commemorated by all the major cultures of the east...near, far & middle for centuries...Here on this side of the world we call it the Spring or Vernal Equinox, Festival of the Trees, Ostara, Lady Day...for us it’s calculated by the solar progressions... when the Sun enters the 1st sign of fiery Aries...as opposed to the lunar cycle used by the ancients...now vernal means green so it’s not too far fetched to see a connection with St. Patrick’s day on the 17th...with it’s emphasis on the shamrock & the wearing of the green...St. Patrick, that once pagan boy from Wales turned Christian priest...with a vengeance...made it his mission to run the snakes out of Ireland...of course no snake was ever native to Ireland to begin with, so we can take this as a metaphor for the conversion of the pagans...or a more affirming way to look at it, is to see the snake as the symbol of transformation & regeneration…2 other Catholic holidays also get mixed up in this ancient symbolism of spring’s fertility...march 25th is called the ‘annunciation of Mary’...annunciation means announcement...so this is the day that the angel Gabriel announced that Mary...the Christian version of The Great Mother Goddess, was pregnant...with the son of god no less...who is born of course 9 months later on Dec. 25th…How’s that for a nice little spring fertility symbol...so let’s dance in the spirit of the many expressions of the One…as we Conceive the rebirth of ourselves…

 

Peace-

H.A.G.

 

 

the equinox is all about harmony & balance...that brief yet eternal time of equilibrium...when day & night are of equal length...in the fall, the darkness holds sway...but now for the spring season the light is triumphant...what a perfect opportunity to tap into this celestial energy as it intersects our earthly ecliptic...a perfect opportunity to bring balance into our lives... harmony into our bodies...we all have a mixture of yin & yang...darkness & light...female & male energies within us...do they both have equal say...or is one force overshadowing the other...perhaps we are consciously putting more emphasis on one, to help develop that side...or maybe we just feel unbalanced & we don’t know why...are we thinking too much...are we too sensitive...too busy doing to just be... is your left side tighter or looser then your right...which side do you part your hair...ah ha...these are questions only you can  answer for your self...but sometimes it helps to have an oracle bring your awareness into focus...now, we don’t have Julius Caesar’s soothsayers here tonight...but it might serve us better if we employ a more I-Ching type method...leaving the interpretation up to you.../my 4 year old daughter violet & I had a fun (& somewhat frantic) time coloring a bunch of cosmic free-range eggs...that rest hidden here in this veiled basket...some are red to represent the male or yang side...some are green to symbolize the feminine or yin side...& some are a combination of the two, to signify the harmony of the Tao we all strive for...so lets hold the space with our rhythm, as we each take a turn reaching into the equinox basket to receive our cosmic clue...maybe you pick a red egg...does it mean you need to put emphasis on the more action orientated, yang part of you...or does it mean you have too much male energy & need to call forth the divine feminine side to bring balance...maybe you pick a green egg & your immediate reaction is yes I am woman hear me roar...affirming the fact that you have chosen to enhance this part of you...but for someone else it might mean, you know I think I need to nurture myself more & stop giving it away to others all the time...perhaps you’ll pick a mixed egg...it could be a sign that you need balance... or an affirmation of the work you have already achieved in that direction...it may also be all too clear to you that to live that balance you need to work on such & such...so be your own soothsayer...take your egg home & meditate with it...sit & brood with it awhile...let it speak to you...decorate it with symbols that hold meaning for you...make it part of your Easter egg hunt... bake it in a challah bread...crack the shell...make egg salad...& eat life... anyway it’s up to you to hatch it...

Peace-

H.A.G.

 

 

OSTARA (pronounced O-STAR-ah) is one of the Lesser Wiccan Sabbats, and is usually celebrated on the Vernal or Spring Equinox right around March 21 (although because of its origins, may instead be celebrated on the fixed date of March 25). Other names by which this Sabbat may be known are Oestara, Eostre's Day, Rite of Eostre, Alban Eilir, Festival of the Trees, and Lady Day. The Christian holiday of Easter is very near this same time, (notice the similarity in name?), and is determined as the first Sunday after the first Full Moon after the Vernal Equinox.

The name for this Sabbat actually comes from that of the Teutonic lunar Goddess, Eostre. Her chief symbols were the bunny (for fertility and because the Ancient Ones who worshipped her often saw the image of a rabbit in the full moon), and the egg (representing the cosmic egg of creation). This is where the customs of "Easter Eggs" and the "Easter Bunny" originated.

Ostara is a time to celebrate the arrival of Spring, the renewal and rebirth of Nature herself, and the coming lushness of Summer. It is at this time when light and darkness are in balance, yet the light is growing stronger by the day. The forces of masculine and feminine energy, yin and yang, are also in balance at this time.

At this time we think of renewing ourselves. We renew our thoughts, our dreams, and our aspirations. We think of renewing our relationships. This is an excellent time of year to begin anything new or to completely revitalize something. This is also an excellent month for prosperity rituals or rituals that have anything to do with growth.

In the Pagan Wheel of the Year, this is the time when the great Mother Goddess, again a virgin at Candlemas, welcomes the young Sun God unto her and conceives a child of this divine union. The child will be born nine months later, at Yule, the Winter Solstice.

For Wiccans and Witches, Ostara is a fertility festival celebrating the birth of Spring and the reawakening of life from the Earth. The energies of Nature subtly shift from the sluggishness of Winter to the exuberant expansion of Spring. Eostre, the Saxon Goddess of fertility, and Ostara, the German Goddess of fertility are the aspects invoked at this Sabbat. Some Wiccan traditions worship the Green Goddess and the Lord of the Greenwood. The Goddess blankets the Earth with fertility, bursting forth from Her sleep, as the God stretches and grows to maturity. He walks the greening fields and delights in the abundance of nature.

Pagan customs such as the lighting of new fires at dawn for cure, renewed life, and protection of the crops still survive in the Southern Americas as well as in Europe. Witches celebrate Ostara in many ways on this sacred day, including lighting fires at sunrise, ringing bells, and decorating hard-boiled eggs which is an ancient Pagan custom associated with the Goddess of Fertility. In those ancient days, eggs were gathered and used for the creation of talismans and also ritually eaten. The gathering of different colored eggs from the nests of a variety of birds has given rise to two traditions still observed today - the Easter egg hunt, and coloring eggs in imitation of the various pastel colors of wild birds. It is also believed that humankind first got the idea of weaving baskets from watching birds weave nests. This is perhaps the origin of the association between colored Easter eggs and Easter baskets.

There is much symbolism in eggs themselves. The golden orb of its yolk represents the Sun God, its white shell is seen as the White Goddess, and the whole is a symbol of rebirth. The Goddess Eostre's patron animal was the hare. And although the references are not recalled, the symbolism of the hare and rabbit's associations with fertility are not forgotten. The Spring Equinox is a time of new beginnings, of action, of planting seeds for future grains, and of tending gardens. Spring is a time of the Earth's renewal, a rousing of nature after the cold sleep of winter. As such, it is an ideal time to clean your home to welcome the new season. "Spring cleaning" is much more than simply physical work. It may be seen as a concentrated effort to rid your home of the problems and negativity of the past months, and to prepare for the coming spring and summer. To do this, many Pagans approach the task of cleaning their homes with positive thoughts. This frees the home of any negative feelings brought about by a harsh winter. A common rule of thumb for Spring cleaning is that all motions involving scrubbing of stains or hand rubbing the floors should be done "clockwise". Pagans believe this custom aids in filling the home with good energy for growth.

Appropriate Deities for Ostara include all Youthful and Virile Gods and Goddesses, Sun Gods, Mother Goddesses, Love Goddesses, Moon Gods and Goddesses, and all Fertility Deities. Some Ostara Deities to mention by name here include Persephone, Blodeuwedd, Eostre, Aphrodite, Athena, Cybele, Gaia, Hera, Isis, Ishtar, Minerva, Venus, Robin of the Woods, the Green Man, Cernunnos, Lord of the Greenwood, The Dagda, Attis, The Great Horned God, Mithras, Odin, Thoth, Osiris, and Pan.

Key actions to keep in mind during this time in the Wheel of the Year include openings and new beginnings. Spellwork for improving communication and group interaction are recommended, as well as fertility and abundance. Ostara is a good time to start putting those plans and preparations you made at Imbolc into action. Start working towards physically manifesting your plans now. The most common colors associated with Ostara are lemon yellow, pale green and pale pink. Other appropriate colors include grass green, all pastels, Robin's egg blue, violet, and white.

Stones to use during the Ostara celebration include aquamarine, rose quartz, and moonstone. Animals associated with Ostara are rabbits and snakes. Mythical beasts associated with Ostara include unicorns, merpeople, and pegasus. Plants and herbs associated with Ostara are crocus flowers, daffodils, jasmine, Irish moss, snowdrops, and ginger.

For Ostara incense, you could make a blend from any of the following scents or simply choose one... jasmine, frankincense, myrrh, dragon's blood, cinnamon, nutmeg, aloes wood, benzoin, musk, African violet, sage, strawberry, lotus, violet flowers, orange peel, or rose petals.

Foods in tune with this day (linking your meals with the seasons is a fine way of attuning with Nature) include eggs, egg salad, hard-boiled eggs, honey cakes, first fruits of the season, fish, cakes, biscuits, cheeses, honey and ham. You may also include foods made of seeds, such as sunflower, pumpkin and sesame seeds, as well as pine nuts. Sprouts are equally appropriate, as are leafy, green vegetables.

From Scott Cunningham: flower dishes such as stuffed nasturtiums or carnation cupcakes also find their place here. (Find a book of flower cooking or simply make spice cupcakes. Ice with pink frosting and place a fresh carnation petal on each cupcake. Stuff nasturtium blossoms with a mixture made of cream cheese, chopped nuts, chives and watercress.) Appropriate Ostara meat dishes should contain fish or ham.

May the Lord and Lady bless you all with fertility, abundance, success, and all things new!

 

 

Twelve Days Of Christmas

On the (first) day of Christmas my true love sent to me
(change day)
 
A partridge in a pear tree 
Two turtle doves
Three French hens
Four calling birds
Five golden rings
Six geese a-laying
Seven swans a-swimming
Eight maids a-milking
Nine ladies dancing
Ten lords a-leaping
Eleven pipers piping
Twelve drummers drumming

this is the eve of epiphany...12th night...traditionally a gender swapping masquerade ball is held...where the king's cake' is baked with a dried bean somewhere inside...who ever receives the bean in their slice of cake becomes king for the night...he must then pick the woman she wishes to be her queen to reign along side...

in Italy there remains a legend involving a witch named LA BEFANA. She appears in street processions as a masked figure with her consort BEFANO, guiding a band of jester-like followers who receive offerings from the people...Befana in turn gives them the gift of prosperity...music fills the streets & families place Befana dolls in their windows, welcoming her blessings into their homes...at the end of the Befana celebration the dolls are burned in effigy...this is done to burn the bad things of the old year & to wish the best things into the new coming...the feast of epiphany is the Christian celebration in remembrance of the magi's visit to the Christ-child...there is a legend that Befana was invited by these wise men [astrologers from the far east] to accompany them in their quest for the sweet baby Jesus whose rising natal star fulfilled ancient prophecy of the messiah...but La Befana who was busy with household tasks at the time told them she would meet up with them when she was finished...so when she was done she began running to catch up with them still carrying her broom along with a sack full of presents for the babe...magically she began to fly on her broom...she never did catch up to the wise men since they went home a different way to avoid the persecution of heroid...so she gave the gifts she carried to the children as she went on her way...this is how the tradition in Italy started where children leave their stockings hanging by the hearth or their shoes at the door for Her to fill with goodies as she flies by...

the eastern church observes the holy day with purification rites & benedictions with water in remembrance of Christ's baptism, the miracle at cana [where he changes water into wine], the healings at Bethesda fountain, walking on the water in Galilee, etc....the water blessed on the eve of epiphany has a sacred warding-off-evil quality to it & is used in critical moments of life...like marriage ceremonies & baptisms...

a bowl of water is set out this night for Befana that she might read in it the future... through Befana's timeless visits to the hearth, Her function is that of reaffirming the bond between the family & the ancestors through an exchange of gifts...

& like the 'moral' of Shakespeare’s play 12th night, remind us, that we must make the best of the now...for this is what shapes the future...

H.A.G.

 

SOL INVICTA { THE FEAST OF THE UNCONQUERED SUN }

 

THE BREATH OF NATURE IS SUSPENDED

IN THE VAST & HOLY NIGHT

WE WAIT WHILE WITHIN

THE DARK KING IS TRANSFORMED

INTO THE INFANT LIGHT

 

THE MOTHER

SLUMBERING THRU THE WINTER OF HER LABOR ABIDES…

UPON THE EASTERN HORIZON -

THE DARKSOME ASCENDANT TO THE SOLAR STAND -

HER COLD VELVET CHAOS

INDUCING THE IMMACULATE PROMISE OF LIGHT

 

HER BODY IS SALT

SAVOR Its PATIENT SONG OF DEATH IN LIFE

PLUNGE INTO HER DORMANT SERUM

& RISE WITH THE MIDNIGHT SUN

 

PAY YOUR PENNY

RECONCILED PROCEED -

COMMENCE THE JOURNEY STEEP

OF THE CARDINAL EARTH FROM SOUTH TO NORTH

IN ADVENT DEEP

 

TAME THE CROCODILE…SANCTIFY THE GOAT

& READ ‘THE SIGNATURE OF GOD’ IN IT’S SINGLE EYE -

KINDLE THERE A TINY GLOW BETWEEN TWIN PILLARS

 

WE ARE AWAKE IN THE NIGHT

TO FEAST ON CAKES OF CARAWAY SOAKED IN CIDER -

PASS THE SPARK TO THE NEW WISHING LOG

FOR THE ALL NIGHT VIGIL

FIRE OAK ROOTS IN A CIRCLE

LET THEM BURN UNTIL DAWN

 

THE HUSHED CENTER THICK AS FRUITCAKE

& THE EVERGREEN CIRCUMFERENCE

A LIGHTED WREATH - ARE ONE-FOR ALL

 

A STATE VAST ENOUGH & STILL ENOUGH

TO ALLOW THE POWER OF LOVE

TO RETURN AT LAST

 

LET THE TANG OF JUNIPER & HOLLY

SHOUT WITH INCENSE TO THE COMFORTER

& THE BELLS RING OUT THE WORD -

RHYME THE TRIUMPHANT NOTE -

GREET MITHRAS BORN UNDER THE TAIL OF THE SEA GOAT

 

‘THE KING IS DEAD LONG LIVE THE KING’

WE CALL OUT EMMANUEL -

SHEPHERDS QUAKE & SERAPHIM SING

FOLLOWING THE STAR THAT SHOWS US THE HOMELESS AVATAR

OUR WINTER BORN KING

 

EAT PHOSPHORUS WITH THE IVY GIRLS -

AMULET SPRIGS ABOVE THE PORTALS -

TRANSMIT THE RIDDLE OF MISTLETOE WITH WASSAIL KISSES -

& PASS THRU THE GATE OF YULE-TIDE

TO SUCCEED THE ZENITH

& CALL THE SUN RISE

IN CRIMSON SASH & CANDLED CROWN

WITH LUCY BRIDE

 

SHE DANCES THE SILENT SPACE WITH OPEN HANDS

TO SPIN THE WHEEL THROUGHOUT THE LONGEST NIGHT

SINGING ‘HAPPY BIRTHDAY’ SWEET SUN KING

SOON TO REVEAL LOVES PURE LIGHT

 

IN THE VAST & HOLY DARK

THE VAST & HOLY DARK

THE VAST & HOLY DARK

SOON TO REVEAL

LOVES PURE LIGHT

 

IN THE VAST & HOLY DARK

THE VAST & HOLY DARK

THE VAST

& HOLY

NIGHT

 

H.A.G.

 

Meditate on death not as the end of physical life,

but as a metaphor for shedding what's outworn.

In that light, what's the best death you've ever experienced?

 

Halloween costume suggestion:

the person you were in a previous incarnation.

 

 

 

The North Wind whispers rumors of winter

into the deaf ears of harvest corn.
Echoes rustle from one end of the field to the other
as the crop attempts to decipher

what the Earth already knows.

H.A.G.

 

 

Brown Bough & Besom 

 

 STRADDLE THE THRESHOLD JANUS STYLE 

THE MYSTIC FACE PIERCING THE VEIL

DIVINING THE FUTURE

THE SCORCHING EYE SIDE SEEING INTO THE GRAVE

PLEASURING THE PAST TO CELEBRATE THE DEAD

& REMIND THEM OF THE WOMB OF THE GREAT MOTHER

 

THE LORD OF MISRULE PRESIDING

WITH THE MISTRESS & LADY OF THE TOMB

ADORNING THE TRANCE MASK

SEKHEM, DIS & NEFERTUM

THEY SET THE BALEFIRE

& PRONOUNCE THE SPELLWORK BY THE MOON

TO ROAST THE SLAUGHTERED STOCK

OF THE FINAL HARVEST

 

SET EXTRA PLACES AT THE TABLE

LEAVE OFFERINGS FOR THE FEAST OF SPIRITS

GINGERBREAD & POMEGRANATES

BEETS & PUMPKIN PIE

MUGWORT, SAGE & ALLSPICE

YARROW, CAMPHOR, RYE

 

DUNK THE NOVICE HEAD

IN THE CAULDRON OF REGENERATION

FOR THE APPLE BOBBING BAPTISM

TO MARK THE HIGH HOLY DAY

WHEN THE SCORPION BECOMES THE EAGLE

& THE SAINTS COME OUT TO PLAY

 

BREATHE IN THE MIST

THAT RISES AT MIDNIGHT

FROM THE BURIAL MOUNDS

& SPEAK WITH THE VOICE OF THE ABYSS

AN ORACLE FOR THE NEW YEAR

GREETING CHAOS WITH A KISS

 

THE GATES OF FAERY STAND OPEN

IN TIME OUT OF TIME

EVERYWHERE & NOWHERE - HERE & THERE

WHEN EVERYTHING IS GATHERED

THE FIELDS LIE FALLOW

& THE ATMOSPHERE IS RARE

ALL SOULS MUST RETURN AT COCK-CROW

WHEN THE TRICK CAN NO LONGER DARE

 

ONLY NOW

LET THE DEAD WALK

TO SHOW THE LIVING

THAT EVERY ENDING

IS BUT A NEW BEGINNING

                 

H.A.G.

 

 

 

Lammas

 

Horned One, Lover's Son, Leaper in the Corn

Deep in the Mother, Die & Be Reborn

 

 

 

Shavuot, the Feast of the Weeks, is the Jewish holiday celebrating the harvest season in Israel. Shavuot, which means "weeks", refers to the timing of the festival which is held exactly 7 weeks after Passover. Shavuot is known also as Yom Habikkurim, or "the Day of the First Fruits", because it is the time the farmers of Israel would bring their first harvest to Jerusalem as a token of thanksgiving.
 

Shavuot also commemorates the anniversary of the giving of the Ten Commandments to Moses and the Israelites at Mount Sinai.

 

Celebrating the Day of the First Fruits

The farmers of Israel would begin their spring harvests with the barley crop at Passover. The harvest continued for seven weeks as the other crops and fruits began to ripen. As each fruit ripened, the first of each type would not be eaten but instead the farmer would tie a ribbon around the branch. This ribbon signified that these fruits were Bikkurim, or the first fruits.
 

At Shavuot the farmers would gather the Bikkurim into baskets and bring them to the city of Jerusalem where they would be eaten in the holy city. The farmers living close to Jerusalem would bring fresh fruits, while those who had to travel a long distance carried dried raisins and figs. This joyful occasion was celebrated with the music of fifes, timbres, and drums. As the pilgrims approached the city walls they were greeted by the inhabitants of the city.

 

Shavuot is a spring holiday that celebrates the giving of the Torah, the first harvest, and the ripening of the first fruits. In the bible, Shavuot is called by various other names: Feast of Weeks, Feast of The First Fruits and Feast of the Giving of the Law. The two day festival begins on the evening of June 5, 2003 and ends on June 7.

Along with being a Harvest holiday and celebrating the spiritual journey of Ruth, Shavuot celebrates the Revelation of Torah.

On Shavuot, we light candles, decorate with greenery, eat dairy food, study Torah, attend prayer services, and read the Book of Ruth.

To further express the creative fires…the feast of weeks, also called the feast of latter first-fruits...marks the end of the barley harvest…the down time, before the beginning of the wheat harvest...the Hebrew name is Shavuot (sha-voo-ote) in remembrance of the day, g.o.d., gave Moses the 10 commandments, engraved with fire on stones...50 days after Passover, the time of the liberation of the Jews from Egypt...the Greek version of this festival is called Pentecost...meaning 50 days after the resurrection of the Christ...when the new law of, ‘love thy neighbor as thy self ‘, was engraved in the heart, with the fire of the holy spirit, among roaring winds & tongues of fire...this day is also called Whitsunday after the white robes worn by those baptized with fire during this vigil...in Italy it was customary to scatter rose petals from the ceiling to recall the miracle of the fiery tongues resting on the heads of the prophets...in France they blow trumpets to suggest the sound of the mighty wind which accompanied the descent of the holy spirit...in Russia the congregation carries flowers & sheaves of barley...I’m not sure what all goes on in the U.S. ...I would imagine the Pentecostal churches trance out & start speaking in tongues...but isn’t that part of the program most Sundays...so maybe we should start our own SheDrums tradition, to bring the spirit of this fiery energy into our consciousness...so lets call our next song...tongues of fire…& see what happens...

 

Hazel's Buddha-Moon Haiku's

 

Sing through the darkness
A pleasing sweetness of sound
Softening the night

 

In the spider's web
An entangled worm still fights
Tomorrow full moon

In pain laughing Buddha Yawns

 

Haiku’s, ants & worms

Buddha-like the Moon sitting

All have the same face

 

On Buddha’s birthday

Spring rain beneath a full moon,

On Buddha’s deathday

Enlightenment in the Lake

Another sunset

 

 

The Rhythm  Method

The drum breathes
The heart drums
Words  silenced
The hands speak

The beat moves
Unleashing love 
Time-space loose
Loses control

Pounding percussion
Purpose and  passion
Enter the place
Of rhythm

Enter the space
Embrace
A piece
Of peace

 

 

The day came when the risk it took to remain tight inside the
 bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom." -Anais Nin

 

 

 

The Gifts Of The Fool

The Men and the Women were hungry. All about them was the Mother's Bounty,

the Gift of the Sacred King, and no way to harvest it.

The Fool came, and took of the Earth itself, and mixed it with water,

and shaped a Pot. And He took of the Grass, and shaped a Basket, and Nets,
and Clothing. And He took wood from the Tree. A straight piece of wood, and he took a stone, the very Bones of the Mother, and shaped it to a point, and fastened it to the wood, and made a Spear.

With another stone He made a Hoe, and with another he crafted a Knife, and gave them

to the Men and Women.
And the Fool spoke, and said, "Look you here at Tools. They give you

claws and fangs, and extend your reach longer than any of the Brothers and
Sisters-in-Fur, even as high as the stars themselves. They will bring you
food, and clothing, and shelter. They are good servants, but poor masters,
for they can also be used in the service of War, and War will harm and kill
you, and destroy what you have. Learn from Earth, and be wise."

The Men and Women were cold, and the winds of Winter blew over them.
Ice and snow rushed around them, and they huddled together, fearing.
But the Fool came to them, with a new thing. He took wood from the Tree,

and the Bones of the Mother, and made a small circle.

And with the wood from the Tree He made Fire.

And the Men and Women gathered around the warmth, as planets gather around suns, and were glad.

And the Fool said, "Look you here at Fire. It is warm and good; a good servant, but a poor master indeed. Learn from this, that some things are good when used correctly, and very bad indeed when used wrongly. For Fire will warm your homes, and cook your food, and do many things for you, but it can harm you,

and kill you, and destroy what you have. You will find many things like Fire. Learn from Fire, and be wise."

And the Fool took the clay pot, and filled it with Water, and placed
therein the meat of the hunt, and the fruits of the Earth. He placed the pot
upon the Fire, and the Water rolled and boiled, and the smell was savory to
the Men and Women. And the Fool spoke, and said, "Look you here at Water, the Blood of the Mother.

It will refresh you, and cool you, and shall be your servant. But mind you do not let it be your master,

for it will drown you, and flood you, and harm you and kill you, and destroy what you have.

It is soft, but of all things it will wear thru even the hardest object. You will find many things
like Water. Learn from Water, and be wise."

The Fool sat beside the Fire, and hummed to Himself, and as He hummed
He clapped his hands in time, and He made yet another new thing, and called it
Song. And the Men and Women took up the Song, and sang, and rejoiced.
And the Fool said, "Look you here at Air. Song is of the Air, of the very Breath you take.

Song will comfort you in sadness, and rejoice with you in celebration.

Song will weave Words into Magic, and can bend the edges of Reality.

Treat it with respect, and do not misuse it, for Song, and Words, can twist and lie

and turn you to a harmful way; take away your individuality and turn you to a Mob,

that knows not what it does."

"You swim in the Air as a Fish swims in Water. Keep it pure, and live.

Foul it, and die. It is your choice. And beware of the Storms of the Air,

for this insubstantial Element can destroy what you have, and kill you.
You will find many things like Air. Learn from Air, and be wise."

And the Fool took of the Sacred King, and He winnowed it in the Air.
He ground it between the Bones of the Earth, and He made flour, and wetted it
with Water, and baked it in Fire, and made Bread, the Body of the Sacred
King. "Know that I am always with you," sang the Fool. "I am He who Saves,
He who Teaches, He who brings Light to the World. I bring peace with one
hand, and a sword with the other, that you may not stagnate, but might learn
and grow, and attain the very stars in the Heavens." "You will always kill me,

in many ways. I have been chained to a rock, and crucified, and burned, persecuted, and hated.

I have been banished and slain, but always, always I return to you, and I will not be silenced."

"My words will be twisted, and misunderstood, but with each generation

you will strive ever closer to That which you reach for, forever striving, forever attaining,

and forever changing."
"Sometimes I will come in quiet, slipping in and out again before you
have known my Presence, and at other times I will come with the sound of
trumpets and proclamations." "But always I will come, and I shall be with you, always, to the End of Time."
 

And He gave the Bread to the Men and Women, and said "Remember!"
And one approached, and said, "You have told us of Earth, and my
husband was digging therein, and it fell upon him and he died. Therefore I
shall kill you." And another approached, and said, "You have told us of Air,

and a great wind has blown my mother from a high place, wherefrom she died.
Therefore I shall kill you." And another approached, and said, "You have given us Fire, and my daughter has burned her hand therein. Therefore I shall kill you." And another approached, and said,

"You have told us of Water, and my
son has drowned therein. Therefore I shall kill you." And they took the Spear, made from the wood

of the Tree, pointed with the Bones of the Mother, and thrust it into the body of the Fool,

and the Fool smiled sadly, and, for the first time of many, died.

"Will you always do this Teaching, O Fool?" said the Lady. "Assuredly so," replied the Fool, with a smile, "For are they not Our children?" "That they are," said the Lord, "But for how long shall You teach them,

and be slain in return?"
"For always," said the Fool. And he smiled, and a single tear coursed down His cheek.

Thus it was, and so it is, and evermore shall be so!

OM  
 

 

Marching in like a Lion

 

March is abundant with ‘Holy Days’, finding voice through many cultural expressions…

For instance the 15th is the famous Ides of March; which we all know as the day Julius Caesar was warned by the soothsayers to beware; the day he was allegedly assassinated...But did you know that according to the ancient Roman calendar, the Ides of March was considered New Year’s Day, & marked the 1st day of Spring...? The 20th also happens to be the Iranian New Year celebration, Norooz, or new day…In 622 AD, Mohammed led his followers from Mecca to Medina to escape assassination…According to the story, when his pursuers reached the cave where Mohammed & his followers had taken shelter for the night, they found a dove nesting in front of it & the entrance covered by a spider's web. So the pursuers passed on, leaving them in peace. Mohammed continued on to Medina, where he & his followers were able to worship freely. Muslims consider this flight -- or Hijrah -- to be the start of the Muslim era & date the beginning of their calendar from it. People worship quietly on this New Year's Day, which begins with the 1st sighting of the crescent moon...& in keeping with the rebirth of nature is also considered the 1st day of Spring...This tradition has been commemorated by all the major cultures of the east...near, far & middle for centuries...Here on this side of the world we call it the Spring or Vernal Equinox, Festival of the Trees, Ostara, Lady Day...for us it’s calculated by the solar progressions, when the Sun enters the 1st sign of fiery Aries, as opposed to the lunar cycle used by the ancients. The Equinox is all about harmony & balance...that brief yet eternal time of equilibrium, when day & night are of equal length. In the fall, the darkness holds sway...but now for the spring season the light is triumphant...what a perfect opportunity to tap into this celestial energy as it intersects our earthly ecliptic...a perfect opportunity to bring balance into our lives...harmony into our bodies. We all have a mixture of yin & yang... darkness & light...female & male energies within us...Do they both have equal say...? Or is one force overshadowing the other..? Perhaps we are consciously putting more emphasis on one, to help develop that side...or maybe we just feel unbalanced & we don’t know why..? Are we thinking too much...are we too sensitive...too busy doing, to just be..? Is your left side tighter or looser then your right...which side do you part your hair..? Ah ha...these are questions only you can answer for your self...Now vernal means green, right, so it’s not too far fetched to see a connection with St. Patrick’s day on the 17th...with it’s emphasis on the shamrock & the wearing of the green...St. Patrick, that once pagan boy from Wales, turned Christian priest, with a vengeance, made it his mission to run the snakes out of Ireland. Of course no snake was ever native to Ireland to begin with, so we can take this as a metaphor for the conversion of the Pagans; or a more affirming way to look at it is to see the snake as the symbol of transformation & regeneration. Two other Catholic holidays also get mixed up in this ancient symbolism of Spring’s fertility...March 25th is called the ‘Annunciation of Mary’...annunciation means announcement...so this is the day that the Angel Gabriel announced that Mary, the Christian version of The Great Mother Goddess, was pregnant; with the son of god no less; who is born of course 9 months later on Dec. 25th…How’s that for a nice little spring fertility symbol...It is fitting that March is International Women’s month, since this is the time of the rebirth of nature. It’s a gentle reminder that we give birth to the future. The future is in our hands, the hands of the midwife, the lap of the mother, the hands of the drummers for peace, the heart & soul of the Goddess in each of us…So let’s end by clapping our hands, bringing them together to honor ourselves  & thank the powers of love & light, knowing, that when the sound of the clapping becomes an echo, it’s energy continues & builds…as we dance in the spirit of the many expressions of the One, & Conceive the rebirth of ourselvesPeace & Blessed Be…

                                                            ---H.A.G.

 

*The Idea Behind the Idea*

a song sometimes called

Wax Lips Insomnia

 

 

BELLA LUNA MOON

A SHINING ON MY TONGUE

REFLECTING MUTED RAINBOWS

WAITING TO BE SUNG

 

BELLA LUNA MOON

A SINGING IN MY BLOOD

FEEL THE TIDE ARISING

THE FLOOD WILL SURELY COME

 

PERFECT PASSION

CLOTHED IN LIGHT

FIERY DARKNESS

SOUL OF NIGHT

 

I PLUNGE MY HANDS INTO HER POOL OF PLENTY

 JUST FOR A LITTLE DRINK

SHE FILLS MY MIND WITH HER PERFECT PASSION

WHAT WILL MY HEART THINK

 

BELLA LUNA MOON

A DANCING IN MY HEART

SOURCE HERE AT MY CENTER

WE WILL NEVER BE APART

 

BELLA LUNA MOON

A PULSING IN MY HEAD

WINGS OF MEMORY FED

THE SECRET CHURCH OF YOU IN BED

 

PERFECT PASSION

CLOTHED IN LIGHT

FIERY DARKNESS

SOUL OF NIGHT

 

I PLUNGE MY HANDS INTO HER POOL OF PLENTY

 JUST FOR A LITTLE DRINK

SHE FILLS MY MIND WITH HER PERFECT PASSION

WHAT WILL MY HEART THINK

 

LIGHT DOES NOT REVEAL

BY IT’S BRILLIANCE IT CONCEALS

THE IDEA BEHIND THE IDEA

LIGHT DOES NOT REVEAL

BY IT’S BRILLIANCE IT CONCEALS

 

THE IDEA BEHIND THE IDEA...

THE IDEA BEHIND THE IDEA...

THE IDEA BEHIND THE IDEA...

Peace & Blessed Be.

H.A.G.

 

This Week...

Somewhere in the world is a tree that has been struck by lightning in such a way

that the scorch marks show your initials...

This is the week of all weeks when you could find that tree...

Somewhere in this world, there is a treasure that has no value to anyone but you,

& a secret that is meaningless to everyone except you,

& a frontier that possesses a revelation only you know how to put into action....

This is the week when you could stumble upon those things...

Somewhere in this world, there is a person who could ask you the precise question

you need to hear in order to catalyze the next phase of your evolution...

This is the week when you might run into that person...

So be a well-rounded hedonist in pursuit of this insight...

but not by pursuing vices and addictions...

Instead, seek out excitement that resonates with  your noblest ideals,

pleasures that thrill your soul as well as your body,
& blissful adventures that enhance the health of you & everyone else  you encounter...

& see what this week may bring...

+Initiate

By Stacey Taheny

Musk, Patchouli in Sandalwood Hair
Place robins egg bindi, open eye, just there
Crown adorned with feathered flame
Mouth speaking your sacred name.
Turquoise tears drop from my ears and
Silver crescent moon appears. A smile and a playful jeer, eyes that
reflect like so many mirrors.
My garments red, embossed with gold, a yoni mudra my hands unfold.
Eyes painted with ebony kohl. And on my sleeve.....I wear my soul.

Written by She and Me for We

 

 

  

+ "The goal of life  is to make your heartbeat match the beat of the universe,

        to match your nature with Nature."

                                                                 --Joseph Campbell  

+My soul is a Mosque for Muslims,
    a Temple for Hindus,
    a Shrine for Buddhists,
    an Altar for Zoroastrians,
    a Church for Christians,
    a Synagogue for Jews,
    and a Pasture for gazelles.                                      
 --Ibn Arabi