The Vernal Equitherm (Beltane) is coming! What could possibly be a better metaphor for Beltane that literally the world’s largest species of Arum flower, with a striking connection to Samhain, which is the flipside of Beltane?? That flower only blooms about once a decade, yet, by wonderful coincidence for Beltane, an indoor specimen here in Michigan just bloomed! Though this is a rare, endangered, tropical plant, there are a number of them at indoor locations. Seeing a blooming one live (and helping efforts to save them) fits well on a Naturalistic Pagan bucketlist!
Music is an compelling part of nearly any spirituality, and as Pagans, we have a connection to the deep and moving body of Pagan music. John Halstead’s posts of music for each Sabbat help us fill this need. In addition to that, now, another invigorating source of music arrives – with the release of three new songs (“The Regime”, “Firelighters”, and “Dead are Dancing”) for their upcoming album “Reclaim the Ritual”, here are Bog Bodies!
The philosopher Alain de Botton once noted that, “religions merit our attention for their sheer conceptual ambition.” But what is a religion anyhow? We all seem to have different ideas. I was raised in a doctrinally and politically conservative denomination of Christianity. This basic worldview informed the earliest formative years of my life, and that’s what I understood religion to be.
I was fascinated by the idea that other religions would necessitate other worldviews, that the world might look very different if I’d been raised in a different tradition, and this simple truism proved the undoing of my childhood faith. After that, I considered myself to be an atheist; I had no religion, because of course atheists aren’t religious. Right?
Happy Spring Equinox, or Ostara! Just two years ago, the pandemic was rapidly ramping up. Today, the pandemic has killed a million Americans and over 6 million worldwide (likely much more), and the vaccines have saved millions who would have died. Even in this surreal time, we can still observe the seasonal change. The orbit of the Earth of course isn’t effected by a pandemic.