Lammas 2021: Autonomy

Bread is one of the the most fascinating human creations. It’s part science and part alchemy. It connects us to Earth, which gives us the wonders of grain, water, and yeast, and to millennia of ancestors who have fed themselves, their families, and their communities through this incredible process. Also, it’s delicious. So Lammas – literally a holiday for bread – is a big deal around here.

Read more

Summer Solstice 2021: Reverence

We desire to know, to sort into boxes labeled “house sparrow,” “creeping bellflower,” “altocumulus.” This desire is ancient within us, hearkening back to when we owed our wellbeing to knowing whether an animal was friend or foe, whether a plant was food or poison, whether a cloud signaled drought or flood. Even without that necessity, sometimes it’s just cool to know what other lives I share my space with: what bird makes that mournful cry in the evenings? what’s that plant suddenly thriving in the shaded corner where nothing else would grow?

Read more

May Day 2021: Embodiment

Was it weird to celebrate May Day this close to Summer Solstice? A little, yeah. But it still felt like a celebration of the energy that May Day represents: that burst of creative and generative energy, the speeding up of plant and animal growth and activity, the return of heat and fire, even to our chilly northern climes. For me, as long as I feel climatologically and atmospherically appropriate celebrating what a Sabbat represents, then I’m going to go ahead and do it.

Read more

Spring Equinox 2021: Accountability

Accountability also fits well with my personal view of Spring Equinox. I’ve always experienced the equinoxes as times of pause, moments where everything balances and we hang, almost suspended, in the fulcrum. At Fall Equinox, we make sure we have the resources to get through the cold, dark stillness of Autumn and Winter ahead. At Spring Equinox, we make sure we have the resources to get through the hot, bright frenzy of Spring and Summer ahead.

Read more

Imbolc 2021: Creativity

Imbolc is, for me, also a Sabbat about keeping promises. After Winter Solstice, we know, both scientifically and from past experience, that the days are getting longer. But around here, it takes a while for that to be apparent to our senses. Based on my schedule, around Imbolc is when I really start to see that increase in light. Imbolc keeps the promise that Winter Solstice made. So I want my Imbolc celebrations to be about keeping promises that past me made and my executively dysfunctional ass then promptly forgot.

Read more

Samhain 2020: Wholeness

As a Pagan in Minnesota, one of the first lessons I learned—and continue to relearn—is how to adapt rituals on the fly, especially those planned for outside. Spending an hour toasting the Ancestors in the cemetery where Leora’s grandmother is buried seemed like a great idea as I planned these rituals in August when it was humid and in the upper 80s (F). It seemed like a crummy idea when the actual day arrived with a predicted high of 31 (0 C) and a windchill of 24 (-4 C).

Read more