Lughna-say-what? What to Call This Pagan Holiday

The problem with the Pagan Wheel of the Year is that we are starting with a name, then working out what the day should mean from its etymology and history, and then trying to associate it with the season—which is completely backwards! We need to look at the season, work out what the holy day should mean, and then come up with an appropriate name. The year should turn the Wheel, not the other way around.

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Why I’m Boycotting Lughnasadh Again

If I went to a public Pagan ritual this weekend, most likely someone would give a little homily about the meaning of the day.  They would begin by explaining the meaning of the names “Lughnasadh” or “Lammas”, either etymologically or historically, and then explain how Lughnasadh is about sacrifice or some other harvest analogy.  But the whole process is completely backwards.  Instead of attuning ourselves to the actual cycles of nature, we end up trying to attune ourselves to an artificial cycle derived from a hodgepodge of Celtic lore and rural British customs.  Rather than the seasons turning the Wheel of the Year, we are letting the Wheel turn the seasons.  As a result, every explanation of a Pagan holiday has to begin with a disclaimer about why the holiday doesn’t match up with what our senses are actually telling us.

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Two Radio Spots

I recently made a trip to Indiana, as is my wont in the summertime. While I’m up there I always try to stir up some trouble. Some of my attempts are more successful than others. International Flag-Burning Day was a bust, for example. But there is evidence that some of my other provocations were more …

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