Autumn Equinox

There are three harvest festivals in the Pagan Wheel of the Year. The first is Lammas (also known as Lughnasadh) which is the grain harvest (wheat and barley). The second is Autumn Equinox, which is the fruit harvest (particularly relevant in southern Ontario with the huge fruit-growing region of Niagara). It is also the time when day and night are of equal length, but the nights are going to get longer until the Winter Solstice. The third harvest is Halloween (known in Scots Gaelic as Samhain, in Irish as Samhuinn, and in Manx as Sauin), which is when farmers would traditionally slaughter any animals they could not feed during the winter, and salt down their meat for food supplies over the lean cold months. 

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The arts in Paganism

Pagan traditions like to celebrate the arts, whether it’s in the eisteddfod of Druid ritual, or the skaldic arts of Heathenry, or making things for use in ritual and around the home. If you look at any list of Pagan values, you will not find false modesty, self-deprecation, or other similar traits on the list. Humility is on many lists, but not modesty (in any sense of the word). Boasting and bragging are fine, and letting it all hang out is fine. False modesty about one’s artistic endeavours is not a Pagan virtue.

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Dialogue with traditions

In initiatory Wicca, there have been some fairly heated arguments over the years about what tradition means, and what aspects of Wicca can be creatively altered to be inclusive. When I started talking about making Wicca more inclusive for LGBTQIA+ people, the response from some people was “but what about the tradition?”

In this post, I propose a new approach to questions of tradition: more of a creative dialogue, and a focus on the real purpose of a tradition (which is the approach I have tried to take all along, but some people assumed that I was throwing away all adherence to tradition).

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