Notable and quotable 8

Some wonderful articles that I’ve spotted this week:

  • Magic: what is it, where does it come from? By Ryan Cronin
  • The Goddess Kālī swallows Jordan Peterson whole. By Josh Schrei
  • My Grandmother’s Tree by Sīv Watson
  • Shattered vessels and scattered sparks by Lorna Smithers


A beautiful post from The River Crow on what magic is and where it comes from. I especially liked the description of the Old Magic:

This magic is not something we create; it is all around us. But it can be so hard to see it sometimes. This magic, like all magic, is not supernatural – for how can there be anything above nature, when nature is the All?

This is the Old Magic. Before tools and words, before humans, this magic flowed through the land. It still flows today and will flow long after we are gone. This is the magic of life itself.

Goddess Kālī swallows Jordan Peterson whole

Honestly, could you have resisted clicking on a link with this headline? I couldn’t resist. So good, I’ll write it again. Goddess Kālī swallows Jordan Peterson whole.

Kālī is all about “how to deal with threat,” Peterson goes on, about humans “trying to come to terms with the category of all awful things.”

And yet, the Bengali poet Ramprasad sang hymns of love to her, and the saint Ramakrishna would go into ecstatic trance merely at the mention of her name. How can this be? When devotees sing to her, she is called “the oceanic nectar of compassion” and “full of grace,” “whose mercy is without end,” the “vessel of mercy” herself.

So yeah, spouting half-baked quasi-post-Jungian psychobabble about Kālī is not big and it’s not clever. It’s also colonialist and patronizing. Do read Josh Schrei’s whole article, it’s awesome, and very informative about the Goddess Kālī.

Grandmother’s Tree

A wonderful article about a lovely grandmother and a horse chestnut tree.

My grandmother loved gardening, she loved beautiful flowers and plants. The garden of the vicarage they lived in for many years was beautifully tended – just the right mixture of wild and tamed. As children, we spent a lot of time in that garden, messing around, developing in amongst the soil and leaves*. In the garden, there was a very large ornamental horse chestnut tree. It was a fairly useless tree to a typical small child, the trunk was tall and smooth – couldn’t climb it, couldn’t build a treehouse in it. But it was gorgeous and grand and Mary James loved it. She loved that tree so very much, and I can remember her hand in hand with a small child, one of my cousins, walking around the trunk. I remember, somewhere in the recesses of my brain, when I walked around the tree with her, too.

Shattered vessels and scattered sparks

Some interesting parallels between Lurianic Kabbalah, Welsh mythology, and Lorna Smithers’ personal gnosis.

In 2015 my patron god, Gwyn ap Nudd, showed me a cauldron filled with stars. Shortly afterwards I was transported into the scene in The Story of Taliesin, where Gwion Bach steals three drops of awen (1) and the cauldron breaks, spilling the deadly remnants of the brew across Gwyddno Garanhir’s lands. With it I saw the stars pouring out and was told by Gwyn my task was to gather them.

2 thoughts on “Notable and quotable 8

  1. Patronizing? Jorden Peterson may well be the embodiment of the Jungian Archetype of patronizing. If there was God of foolishness masquerading as wisdom he would be an avatar.

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