Articles/Essays From Pagans
July 13th. 2016 ...
What Every Pagan Should Know About Curses
Magic With A Flick of my Finger
Banishments, Conjurings, and Hexes for a Modern World
An Open Mind and Heart
Finding and Caring for Your Frame Drum
June 13th. 2016 ...
Pollyanna Propaganda: The Distressing Trend of Victim-Blaming in Spirituality
Living a Magickal Life with Fibromyalgia
My Father, My First God
Life is Awesome... and the Flu
May 15th. 2016 ...
Faery Guided Journey
How to Bond with the Elements through Magick
Magical Household Cleaning
Working with the Elements
April 2nd. 2016 ...
An Alternative Conception of Divine Reciprocity
Becoming Wiccan: What I Never Expected
Rebirth By Fire: A Love Letter to Mama Maui and Lady Pele
The Fear of Witchcraft
Blowing Bubbles with the Goddess
The Evolution of Thought Forms
Magic in Sentences
March 28th. 2016 ...
Revisiting The Spiral
Lateral Transcendence: Toward Greater Compassion
Spring Has Sprung!
January 22nd. 2016 ...
Coming Out of the Broom Closet
Energy and Karma
Community and Perception
December 20th. 2015 ...
Introduction to Tarot For the Novice
Magia y Wicca
October 24th. 2015 ...
Facing Your Demons: The Shadow Self
The Dream Eater--A Practical Use of Summoning Talismans
Native American Spirituality Myopia
A Dream Message
Feeling the Pulse of Autumn
October 16th. 2015 ...
Sacred Lands, Sacred Hearts
September 30th. 2015 ...
September 16th. 2015 ...
Nature Worship: or Seeing the Trees for the Ents
Vegan or Vegetarian? The Ethical Debate
August 6th. 2015 ...
Lost - A Pagan Parent's Tale
July 9th. 2015 ...
Love Spells: The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly
The Magic of Weather
June 7th. 2015 ...
A Pagan Altar
A Minority of a Minority of a Minority
The Consort: Silent Partner or Hidden in Plain Sight?
Why I Bother With Ritual: Poetry and Eikonic Atheism
May 6th. 2015 ...
Sex, Lies, and Witches: Love in a Time of Wiccans and Atheists
Gods, Myth, and Ritual in Naturalistic Paganism
I Claim Cronehood
13 Keys: The Crown of Kether
March 29th. 2015 ...
A Thread in the Tapestry of Witchcraft
March 28th. 2015 ...
On Wiccan Magick, Theurgy, Thaumaturgy and Setting Expectations
March 1st. 2015 ...
Choosing to Write a Shadow Book
Historiolae: The Spell Within the Story
My Concept Of Grey
February 1st. 2015 ...
Seeker Advice From a Coven Leader
The Three Centers of Paganism
Magick is No Illusion
The Ancient Use of God/Goddess Surnames
The Gods of My Heart
January 1st. 2015 ...
The Six Most Valuable Lessons I've Learned on My Path as a Witch
Manipulation of the Concept of Witchcraft
Publicly Other: Witchcraft in the Suburbs
Pagans All Around Us
Broomstick to the Emerald City
October 20th. 2014 ...
Thoughts on Conjuring Spirits
A Microcosmic View of Ma'at
October 5th. 2014 ...
The History of the Sacred Circle
Abandoning Expectations and Remembering Your Roots
September 28th. 2014 ...
Seeking Pagan Lands for Pagan Burials
Creating a Healing Temple
September 20th. 2014 ...
GOD AND ME (A Pagan's Personal Reply to the New Atheists)
September 7th. 2014 ...
Deer Man- A Confounding Mystery
August 31st. 2014 ...
Coven vs. Solitary
A Strange Waking Dream
August 24th. 2014 ...
Thoughts on Cultural and Spiritual Appropriation
The Pagan Cleric
A Gathering of Sorcerers (A Strange Tale)
NOTE: For a complete list of articles related to this chapter... Visit the Main Index FOR this section.
Article ID: 8778
Age Group: Adult
Days Up: 4,305
Times Read: 8,519
Author: Sia@FullCircle [a WitchVox Sponsor]
Posted: October 17th. 2004
Times Viewed: 8,519
In April of 2003, I wrote an article for the Witches' Voice which appeared soon after the U.S. declared war in the Middle East. The article is titled "The Elephant in Our Circles: Pagans Tolerance and the War in Iraq" [link]. Since then, tolerance has become an issue in many ways and in many venues.
In January of 2004 Full Circle declared that our theme for the annual Witches' Ball would be The Silk Road. We deliberately choose this theme because it spoke about tolerance and the exchange of ideas; two things that tend to take a back seat during wars and elections.
As our Council member, Laurel, notes, "The Silk Road was a network of ancient caravan routes that opened commerce between the great civilizations of east and west. It was, in effect, the Internet of its day. In addition to a commercial trade route, the Silk Road was also a pipeline that spread new concepts of religion, culture, and technology". In that spirit of tolerance and discovery, we choose to celebrate a historical period in which the parties that are fighting now, once lived in peace and relative harmony.
Some people have criticized us for choosing this theme. Some of this criticism springs from prejudice towards the cultures involved (which include the West, Asia and the Middle East). Others have felt that the theme wasn't "Witchy" enough or that it was too obscure. To them I say this: To be Pagan is to find meaning, to know what is truly sacred, and to celebrate connection even when times are hard. While it is easy to become heated, it is much more difficult to make light. To us here at Full Circle, the job of any Witch or Pagan is to make light when we can and where is it most difficult to do so. As the Pagan Voting Project notes: "Lighting a candle is not enough". Sometimes, we have to stand up and speak our truth, whether that truth is popular or not.
It would be easy for us to host a Witches' Ball that was only about shiny things and showing off. Instead, we've chosen to make an interfaith charity event where all are welcome and where the Humane Society, the Wildlife Rescue groups and others of like mind can take a seat at our table. This is being "out of the Broom Closet" with a vengeance, folks. And the Nay Sayers can make of this what they like.
Just after this latest new moon I received an email from a woman named Labrys. She had recently read my article on the war at TWV and she was kind enough to write and tell me how she felt about it. She also shared with me her story of building a labyrinth to remember the American service men and women who have fallen and to comfort to their families. Her email speaks so movingly about tolerance and right action in difficult times that I have asked her permission to quote it here. You will find it below.
I noticed with some dismay just after 9/11 that some groups hosting Samhain rituals choose only to remember those they deemed "politically correct"; an oxymoron if there ever was one. I have hopes that this year the Pagan community will remember all of the mothers, fathers, brothers and sisters, children and elders who are no longer with us. May these people find the peace in their next life that they may not have found in this one.
As we celebrate the memory of our Beloved Dead this season, let us remember those who have suffered loss, not just because of this war, but also because of intolerance, disease, poverty, hunger, neglect, hatred, crime, and apathy. As Terry Pratchett rightly notes: "There is no justice. There's just us." What we as individuals choose to do or not to do matters, it matters deeply. May we choose wisely and well.
Blessings to you and yours this Samhain.
This article is dedicated to the readers of The Witches' Voice and to all those who lost a Loved One this year. can be reached for comment at firstname.lastname@example.org
Location: Portland, Oregon
Author's Profile: To learn more about Sia@FullCircle - Click HERE
Bio: Sia is the Founder and Council Leader of Full Circle. She can be reached for comment at email@example.com
Author's Note: If you have enjoyed reading this piece, I would ask the you help support the Witches Voice in their efforts to celebrate and support the Pagan community by becoming a Witchvox Sponsor. They rely on our support to keep this non-profit website up and running, so please, do your part to help our community and send them a donation. With thanks, Sia
I wanted to thank you for your article at Witchvox about the elephant in the circle, tho' I admit I found it very belatedly. The war has certainly be divisive, and in more than pagan circles. I think it is ripping very hearts apart. Unfortunately, as you pointed out, nothing is easily black and white and the effort to deal honestly (rather than in sound bites) with such a morass of moral, political, and religious issues all combined in this war does stress the soul.
I much appreciate your thoughtful comments. My husband and I are both Army veterans, my son is currently in the Army. My son and I both consider ourselves warriors in many senses of the word, but this war dismays us both on several levels.
While I do not avoid that elephant, I do try to keep many of my own opinions soft and muted as my first real action put me in a place I never expected to be. You see, last May, after the supposed 'mission accomplished', I began planning a memorial to the men and women we were losing. In August my husband and I together built a seven circuit Cretan labyrinth with 4 tons of sandstone. The monument at center bears the name : Walk of the Fallen Iraq 2003. I admit, I did so hope that somehow, that year would be the end, but I doubted it. We opened it at Samhain 2003, on Nov 8th with luminaries bearing the names of the fallen service members and a fire in the adjoining fire pit. On Veterans' Day only days later we invited the public, but almost nobody appeared. But those who came bore such open, emotionally devastated faces in the face of their personal losses that I knew my own political and spiritual desires and needs must take a back seat to being facilitator of the labyrinth's own healing purpose.
This year, we celebrate Samhain on Oct 27. I cannot light over 1100 luminaries, and very wet weather is in the forecast; therefore this year the lights will be electric, one per dead American service member. We will light the labyrinth every night from our Samhain through Nov 11, Veterans' Day for all comers, pagan or not. On Veterans' Day I will also put out small American flags, again, one per service member fallen.
Because those who find and walk this walk have varied and torn feelings, as you pointed out, and sometimes include those who have lost a loved one to the war, I keep my silence on my personal passions in the cause of promoting healing and comfort, and I hope, rest for the fallen themselves. My pagan friends assure me the labyrinth is potent in energy and force, a magical creation in the finest sense. Myself, I am partially 'blind' to such things; perhaps in protection to me...as working it weekly and sometimes daily, if I were oversensitive, I suspect I might be overwhelmed. I continue my work there, and welcome any who wish to walk there....in the season of Samhain or any other time.
You may see it, if you like at www.tomcynphotoarts.com by clicking on the Walk of the Fallen link.
Other Articles: Sia@FullCircle has posted 23 additional articles- View them?
Other Listings: To view ALL of my listings: Click HERE
Email Sia@FullCircle... (No, I have NOT opted to receive Pagan Invites! Please do NOT send me anonymous invites to groups, sales and events.)
Web Site Content (including: text - graphics - html - look & feel)
Copyright 1997-2016 The Witches' Voice Inc. All rights reserved
Note: Authors & Artists retain the copyright for their work(s) on this website.
Unauthorized reproduction without prior permission is a violation of copyright laws.
Website structure, evolution and php coding by Fritz Jung on a Macintosh G5.
Any and all personal political opinions expressed in the public listing sections (including, but not restricted to, personals, events, groups, shops, Wren’s Nest, etc.) are solely those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinion of The Witches’ Voice, Inc. TWV is a nonprofit, nonpartisan educational organization.
Sponsorship: Visit the Witches' Voice Sponsor Page for info on how you
can help support this Community Resource. Donations ARE Tax Deductible.
The Witches' Voice carries a 501(c)(3) certificate and a Federal Tax ID.
Mail Us: The Witches' Voice Inc., P.O. Box 341018, Tampa, Florida 33694-1018 U.S.A.
of The World
NOTE: The essay on this page contains the writings and opinions of the listed author(s) and is not necessarily shared or endorsed by the Witches' Voice inc.
The Witches' Voice does not verify or attest to the historical accuracy contained in the content of this essay.
All WitchVox essays contain a valid email address, feel free to send your comments, thoughts or concerns directly to the listed author(s).