Weekly Update: 11/20/2000|
Author: Witchvox Central
Posted: November 20th. 2000
Times Viewed: 4,796
| November-Marking The Time In Between...|
The changing of the seasons is well underway- even here in Florida- and we notice that the sun now sets in His/Her Autumnal position. As with all of the forces in Nature, our golden orb follows the rhythmic principles that guide the Universe. It is time to move on. Our non-U.S. readers will undoubtedly be happy to read that The Witches' Voice will NOT be covering the presidential election again this week. Let the chads fall where they may!
November is a season 'in between'. In the Northern Hemispheres, it marks the days between Samhain and Yule. The hours of sunlight are trimmed short. The nights grow longer. Many northern Pagan traditions view the month of November as a continuation of the Samhain season and they spend the time in reflection and introspection. Recalling the agricultural societies of the past ages upon which much modern Pagan tradition is based, our present-day spiritual 'harvests' have now been gathered in. The fields lie 'fallow' until that time when the Sun once again begins to eke out a few more minutes of warmth each day.
In the Southern Hemispheres, November is also a seasonal marker. Between Beltaine and the Summer Solstice (Litha), spiritual seedlings are sprouting and beginning to grow. Watching over the new plantings of hopes and wishes and plans requires patience and attention to details. Everything has been 'activated' and now Southern Pagans are waiting to see what fruit will come from their efforts.
Our Gaia is continually in a simultaneous state of rest and activity. That is Her way. November is a month in which Pagans everywhere can spend reflecting upon such profound mysteries.
Photo credit: The picture to your upper right was sent in by David and Laura (Email: firstname.lastname@example.org) and is from their handfasting earlier this year. Blessings on your recent union and thank you David and Laura for sharing this wonderful image with us all.
November-A Month For Giving Thanks...
Here in the U.S., November is often marked by that national holiday called Thanksgiving. Within the last decade, Americans have become a little schizophrenic about celebrating this particular day. In fact, it is not only Thanksgiving, but many of the holidays celebrated by humankind that Pagans in particular may be conflicted about.
Thanksgiving, we have learned in recent years, is not exactly as it was depicted in that coloring book picture that we brought home from first grade to post on the refrigerator door. Pagans who resonate or empathize with Native American beliefs may find that the Treaties, Turkeys and Treachery surrounding the true history of what happened after that 'first Thanksgiving' nothing to celebrate. Those of us with Native American friends may feel that honoring what one of ours only half-kiddingly calls "Kill the Indians Day" is served up with a side order of guilt. (This same close friend will be hosting a feast this coming weekend-which we are attending- that has everything to do with giving thanks and nothing to do with 'Pilgrim Pride'.) So where does that leave us? Should we defrost that turkey sitting in the freezer or not?
Go ahead and start mixing up the stuffing. Thanksgiving has developed -like most of the other well known holidays- a multiple personality and that is just as it should be in a diverse nation of many beliefs and even of non-belief. Just as Halloween/Samhain and Christmas/Yule have morphed into being both a secular celebration for some and a religious observation for others, Thanksgiving has emerged from its strict religious connotation into something that can be adapted to just about everyone. As long as we can be comfortable with that, we can enjoy any holiday for what it means to US rather than what some faction of society may try to tell us that it should mean for everyone. As Pagans, our family is who WE say our family is (regardless of the various misguided attempts to force us all into the 'traditional family' parameters of the religious radical right), and so too the holidays that we choose to celebrate can be about what WE say are the concepts and historical events that are worthy of celebration. Thanksgiving, by its very name, is a time to celebrate the good things in Life. So, give thanks to those people and for those things 'as ye will.' And don't forget to thank both the turkey and the cook!
WitchVox Question of the Week!
This week's Pagan Perspective section is devoted to giving thanks...
What are YOU thankful for? As we get together with family and friends at this time of the year (and at every time of the year), which people do you want to thank for making a meaningful difference in your life? (Why not surprise someone and thank him/her/them publicly right now and right here?) What lessons that came your way turned out to be blessings in disguise? How do you demonstrate your gratitude to the Earth and/or to your Gods/Ancestors for their continuing guidance and blessings?
Click to Post Your thanks or to view the Responses
| Teens and the Craft |
November AdultVox Essays... Now Up!
- Teens and the Craft: There's a lot in these essaysa lot of thought, a lot of ideas and a lot of good advice for both teens and the adults who teachor are thinking of teachingthem. One recurring theme is that the best teaching we do is the teaching we can't escapewhat we teach by our example. Read these thought-provoking essays here: . Page#: 1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 - 8 - 9 - 10 - 11
- Mainstream or Mystery?: We asked if the attempts of many Neopagan traditions to recreate mystery traditions were compatible with the goal of trying to make our religions more open and acceptable to the mainstream. We received only one essay in reply, which you can read here
November TeenVox Essays... Now Up!
- Teenagers and the Craft This is the teen segment of a topic that the adults will weigh in on next week: Teenagers and the Craft. What is most striking about these essays is the level of maturity exhibited and the insight into the issues involved. Everyone who has, or will have a Pagan teenager in their life, in their coven, or even on an email list or in a chat room should read these essays to get a better understanding of what Pagan teenagers go through trying to find someone to teach them. Check out the Teenagers and the Craft essays... Page ONE - TWO - THREE - FOUR - FIVE - SIX - SEVEN
For a complete list of Future Teen Topics: Click HERE ... For Adult Topics: Click HERE
NOTE: We are looking for suggestions for next years Teen Essay topics... If YOU have some ideas mail them to Diotima
Wren and Fritz can't thank the beautiful Dio enough for the help that she has delivered to us. She has been a gift from the Goddess and we are honored to work with her. Bless YOU Dio.
|Witches of the World - Email Verification|
28,974 Contacts "Hand Counted" -- One by One
This past week has, mercifully, rendered a leveling of action and activity here at the Witches' Voice. With the annual Samhain media coverage behind us we are starting to see a bit of light. Email and site traffic have started to "normalize" giving Wren and I the opportunity to reflect on the year gone by.
By popular estimates over 30% of the email/site links on the world wide web are dead ones. It's easy to generate a large list of people, links, groups, shops etc., the REAL work is keeping it "correct and for the good of all". We believe that YOU want listings that are up to date and accurate. TWV is quite proud of the fact that we have faithfully tested, purged, deduped and updated our listings for close to 4 years. In fact we have removed over 22,000 broken links and bad email addresses during our 4.5 years on the web.... So how DO we keep it clean?
Last Week... we ignored Katherine Harris's (R-Florida) order and started "hand counting" our people listings here at WitchVox. We sent out almost 29 thousand pieces of email to those of you listed as contacts on the Witchvox "Witches of the World" Pages. We try to do this every quarter but this time it's been almost 6 months. As of this writing we HAVE completed the daunting task of both verification and removal of those that no longer choose to be listed. Out of the 28,974 contacts listed 2,063 were returned as undeliverable and have been removed. 210 of you requested to be removed and this too has been completed.
- Every night we ping a few hundred of the people listings for accuracy.
- Every 2 days we update, dedupe (3 levels), fix, cleanse and regenerate ALL of the WOTW listings.
- Every 60 days we test ALL of the URLs in our massive Pagan Links section.
- Every 90-180 days we verify all email addresses in our WOTW state/country pages.
What IF we removed you by mistake? Neither machine or hand counts are perfect so... If you believe that your email address WAS correct and you are no longer listed kindly surf over to our submission forms and re-list yourself. IF you are a WitchVox sponsor simply email us and we will update or reinstate your listing. NOTE: Due to the sheer number of listings here at Witchvox we can only do manual/hand editing for our Sponsors.
Deep Search at TWV Pagan Links: TWV is just one of thousands of Pagan websites, but we DO have a powerful listing of over 5,000 Pagan sites. This week we expanded the search capabilities of this critical section to include deeper searches based on all key words in the listings profile. Check out this powerful option at Witchvox Pagan Sites Search List YOUR Pagan Web site by clicking here
Today... we updated traffic stats for both Witchvox domains (through 11/19). Traffic has leveled out a bit but not by much, TWV daily page requests are holding steady at 42,000 a day. Mercifully our servers are stable and life is good (we actually do work magic FOR server stability).
This Coming Week... we will send out email verification to the 2,000 covens and groups and the 1,000 plus active events/workshops listings here at TWV. We will quickly remove any undeliverables that we encounter. To modify or add your Coven, Group or Event click HERE
May you be with those that you love this week.
Fritz Jung (WebCrafter - Witchvox)
November 20th., 2000
Festivals Rock the Pagan Path...
Fall Into Rhythm: Yesterday, Fritz and Wren visited some our friends at the Fall Into Rhythm festival at the beautiful Boyd Hill Nature Park. Walking amongst the old oak groves, we came upon small Pagan encampments of local covens and vendors. After presenting a workshop in the morning, we shared a most excellent lunch with Roger Paraselsu Coleman, the High Priest of the Church of Iron Oak, Ann Moura, author of "Green Witchcraft I, II and III" published by Llewellyn, and many of our very gracious hosts and hostesses. Thank YOU Ann Marie for allowing us to share your magick.
Autumn Meet 2000: Earlier this month, we joined Trish Telesco at AutumnMeet 2000. Trish sez: "Among the many wonderful moments of this weekend, I would like to reflect on a few. First was the wonderful opportunity to connect with Phyllis Curott again. Phyllis speaks with an important message to the community - about civil responsibility and pagans, a topic that was heavily on people's minds and in conversations all weekend with the election on the horizon. It seems neo-pagans are nearly as passionate about politics as they are about magick, which is a GOOD thing! " Read the rest of what Trish had to say by clicking here. Also for those who have enjoyed the many spectacular festivals and events hosted by our good friends at Phoenix Festivals, there is now an e-list which you can join to keep in touch with your Phoenix friends and what new things are being planned for next year. You can sign up on the Phoenix Festival homepage or at Subscribe to Phoenix Festival e-group.
Stones Rising 2000: David O'Rork of PagaNet News reviewed the Stones Rising 2000 event at Four Quarters Farm: "The gentle song of crickets carries on a warm night breeze. The waning moon and a dusting of stars peer down over the tree rimmed glade as the procession approaches. They pass through two columns of a robe clad chorus casting a joyful noise out onto the sweet night air. As they pass through an ivy covered trellis gate, acolytes sprinkle them with consecrated water from the needles of a pine branch and smudge them with the wafting smoke of burning sage. They enter a wide circle dominated by huge standing stones erected along the eastern perimeter, jagged fingers of rock projecting like bone from the body of the Earth. Each is unique. Each has a story to tell, but tonight they are quiet. Draped with colored shrouds, they await the coming dawn and the rising of the stones." Read the review and see the pictures from this magickal event and don't forget to also visit PagaNet News this month (and every month). Survival Inside the System by Bear is a very good read and that is just a taste of what PagaNet serves up in every issue.
Photo credit: The wonderful "fire image" (above) was captured on video tape by Fritz at the Autumn Meet Festival in 1999 and is of the beautiful Maya Heath holding the audience spellbound with a riviting story at bardic circle.
The Witches' Voice staff has much to be thankful for.
To our beloved sponsors, we send our heartfelt gratitude for continuing to support this project.
To our Pagan family, we are so very mindful that it is YOU, the Pagan community, who allow us to do this work and it is for YOU that we are humbly honored to do it.
To our personal friends and families, words cannot say how very much we value each and every one of you for your kindness, wisdom and understanding.
And to our Gods and Ancestors, we offer up once again our hearts, minds and hands in Their service, thankful as always that They have set us upon such an wonderful and fulfilling journey.
In Your Service,
Wren Walker & Fritz Jung
The Witches' Voice
Year 2000 - November, 20th.
Photo credit: The shot above was captured at the Autumn Meet festival (we were trying to DEAL with a bone-chilling night in the mid-50s) earlier this month by Rene Michaels. - thanks Rene.
Location: Clearwater¼, Florida
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