Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

On Getting Reaped at Lammas

A friend in Poland has a small farm, and he has been teaching himself to mow the meadows with a scythe. We have email conversations sprinkled with words like “snath” and “peening,” which I know only from reading.1)He is an American expatriate, but I suppose that he has learned the equivalent Polish terms as well. […]

The Little Fire God Went Running

The opening paragraph of the novel that made me a Tony Hillerman fan: Shulawitsi, the Little Fire God, member of the Council of the Gods and Deputy to the Sun, had taped his track shoes to his feet. He had wound the tape as Coach had taught him, tight over the arch of the foot. […]

Pentagram Pizza Cut into 12 Slices

• Everything old is new again — young Chinese discover the Western zodiac and think that it is cooler than “Year of the Monkey,” etc. • “Witchcrap” from The Daily Beast website — “These Modern Witches Want to Cast a Spell on You.” Modern witchcraft combines feminism, self-help, and wellness. But is there more to […]

New Issue of The Pomegranate Published

Issue  19.1 Table of Contents Articles “Discourses of Paganism in the British and Irish Press during the Early Pagan Revival” G.J. Wheeler “Pagan Leaders and Clergy: A Quantitative Exploration” Gwendolyn Reece “From Folklore to Esotericism and Back: Neo-Paganism in Serbia” Nemanja Radulovic “Contemporary Germanic/Norse Paganism and Recent Survey Data” Joshua Marcus Cragle Book Reviews — open […]

Happy Independence Day & Blessed Be

The Stars and Stripes, a Colorado craft beer, and a Ripley’s witchcraft museum goblet. This is actually the summer solstice celebration, I reckon, delayed two weeks. I’m kicking back after driving one of my department’s fire trucks in Nearby Town’s 4th 0f July parade. Here is a picture of one of the units pre-parade. Kids […]

Large-Group Ritual: Magic, Worship, or “Just What We Do”?

A friend in Poland sent a link to this music video, adding that it looks a lot like the Midsummer celebration in his village but needs the volunteer firefighters, more kielbasa, and more vodka, except, “Our river’s a fair bit wider, too.” He describes the St. Nicholas Orchestra as “Pagan-friendly,”  and into  the “anti-clerical stratum” […]

Quick Review: Sex, War, and the Tarot

That is the subtitle I mentally add to Alan Richardson’s novel The Lightbearer. It starts with the landing of Allied paratroopers in Normandy just after midnight on June 6, 1944, a meticulously planned operation that ended up scrambled by Murphy’s Law. In the novel, a transport aircraft carrying some of the pathfinders goes astray (as […]

An Amber Alert from 1284 CE

“Amber alert” defined for readers outside the USA. In five days it will be the 733rd anniversary of the most famous missing children case in Western Europe. What happened to the children of Hamelin, a town (current population about 57,000) in what is today the German state of Lower Saxony (Niedersachsen)? A June 2010 article […]

What Is Wrong with Large-Scale Ritual?

When it comes to large-scale ritual, the traditional Wiccan circle does not scale up well. It was made for a small-group mystery religion, where twelve or thirteen people really is the maximum.1)OK, maybe up to twenty or so, but that is more than enough, especially if they are skyclad and all waving athames. That Wiccan […]

Viking Hoodoo — Who Knew?

Who knew the old Norse were into runic candle magic? Not me. All right, you should not judge a museum exhibit by what is in the gift shop. It’s just that the designers of the Vikings: Beyond the Legend traveling exhibit, chiefly from the Swedish History Museum, if I understand correctly, took great pains to […]