Dry brown vines and fresh green and rust-colored vines twine around each other, creating a complex self-supporting structure.

“I want you to know how much I cared”: being open, not being strong

As so often happens when I’m moved to write something, today’s post comes from multiple sources that, while not intrinsically connected, end up jostling against each other in my daily life. Usually I end up working to hide the seams, as it were, to make the writing feel like an uninterrupted whole, but today I’m showing my work. (Sorry for mixing those metaphors.) Today, meditations on openness and honesty, courtesy of my non-druid friends, Jens Lekman, homosexuality, and my husband.

Continue reading “I want you to know how much I cared”: being open, not being strong

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Many multi-colored arcs of light, superimposed, cross the frame from lower left to upper-right, with smaller arcs diminishing concentrically toward the lower right. The overall effect is similar to an LP made entirely of traces of light.

When in doubt, make offerings: orthopraxy as guiding force

Three Cranes Grove celebrated the festival of Imbolc this past Sunday, and it was a hard one for me: essentially, I wasn’t in the ‘right’ headspace. I’d had a nonstop week leading up to it, I’d agreed last-minute to take on more parts in the ritual than I’d anticipated, I had nine hours of choral rehearsal scheduled around the rite, Jarod and I had spent the night with our godson after his mom gave birth — which to be utterly clear, was a joyous duty we were happy to take on, but was just one more thing in a very busy timeframe — and overlaying it all was a pervasive sense of fear and despair surrounding the Trump administration’s activities. I was pretty frazzled. I went to Imbolc out of a sense of obligation, rather than desire. And so, as I posted on Facebook that evening, I was amazed to discover after the fact that even the memory of the rite was deeply moving and grounding. I ended up exploring the issue of why and how my meta-experience shifted throughout the course of ritual with a friend, a graduate student in Old Testament archeology, and in the process of explaining religiocultural differences while also trying to draw parallels to his Evangelical Christianity, I came to a better understanding of the ways orthopraxy functions for me as a member of ADF and as a ritual practitioner.  Continue reading When in doubt, make offerings: orthopraxy as guiding force

A fogbow (an all-white rainbow that sometimes appears in fog) hovers over the cracked ice of the Arctic Sea; the prow of an ice breaker pokes out of the lower corner, its shadow on the ice below.

On ritual, responsibility, and consecration

It’s been quiet around these parts for a good while, but it’s not for a lack of activity in my real life. Rather the opposite: I’ve been buried under a pile of responsibilities and activities both secular and religious, and writing that has no clear deadline or penalty (read: this blog) has gotten put to the wayside. Of course, there is in fact a penalty: I begin to feel like I have a well bottled up in me, and as if I’m betraying promises I made to the gods when I first started this site. And so, segue, I’m here to write about running ritual and the difficult but worthwhile responsibility it brings, centered around my first time running a ritual at this past Winter Solstice. Continue reading On ritual, responsibility, and consecration

An abstract digital art piece, multicolored undulations intertwining across the image, predominantly oranges and reds

A month of prayers: week 3

When I buckle down and hammer out headnotes, I get things out more timely; thus, week 3, barely a week and a half overdue! Continue reading A month of prayers: week 3

A blank unlined notebook rests on a table, a fine pen angling over its surface. The scene is lit by two small votive candles, which give a cozy orange glow to the entire scene.

A month of prayers: week 1

As many people are aware, November is National Novel Writing Month: participants have daily writing goals intended to spur them to complete an entire draft of a novel during the month of November. Not all of us are novel writers, however, but sometimes we like to join in the fun. Rev. Jan Avende challenged her fellow ADF clergy to write a prayer a day, and since then it’s taken off — not just with clergy, but also with bards, liturgists, dedicants; all manner of the folk writing prayers to the Kindreds. Continue reading A month of prayers: week 1

Detail from the facade of the Wales Millenium Centre; the words "HORIZONS" and SING" are visible, part of the larger inscription "In These Stones Horizons Sing"

Imbas and change

Yesterday I was talking with a good friend, catching up on each other’s lives after a couple months only ‘seeing’ each other on social media. He asked me how I was doing, and I paused a bit to think before responding “I think… I feel like I’m changing. Not in a bad way, and not like a total upheaval, but still: a definite shift.” He nodded. “That matches what I’ve been seeing from you online.” It’s good to have that kind of validation, because it’s a very odd experience to see these processes happening; usually they’re only clear in hindsight, so it’s more than a bit disconcerting to feel like you’re observing the building blocks of your life in motion, and to feel like there’s an extent to which they’re moving beyond your direct control. Continue reading Imbas and change