Weekly Update: 1/29/2001|
Author: Witchvox Central
Posted: January 29th. 2001
Times Viewed: 6,861
| The Times of Our Lives...|
Sometimes things just pop into your head. There you'll be-just daydreaming along about nothing in particular- and suddenly some flash from the past takes over and you find yourself taking a trip down memory lane. In this case though, it was a trip down the moving van lane.
When Witchvox relocated to Florida three years ago, one box came up missing. Well, not missing exactly, but rather buried beneath several monstrous other boxes of Fritz's lifelong collection of rare rock video clips and music albums. Not being the she-woman that she once was, Wren fussed about it but never got around to the messy, sweaty and muscle aching task of moving the collections around enough to get at that box. For some reason, she decided to take on the task last Wednesday. Several hours of shuffling (Excuse me, Ruby, but pleez get your tail out of the way!), dust-raising and grunting later, the box emerged from the bottom (of course!) of the pile. Among the long-lost treasures was a photo album. Flipping through it, pictures of Gwendolyn, Thoth, Christina and Derrick, Peg, Lisa, Jim, Adam, Colin and Angie, Toby and Elf and so many other old friends smiled out at us. Friends, most of whom we had not seen for the three years since we had moved away from Boston, looking just as they had at the moments now immortalized by the miracles of film processing. Happy. Vibrant. Magickal. So very magickal. Wren caught her breath, smiled back at the faces which prompted so many wonderful memories and got back to work tidying up.
Looking back, Wren knows now that sometimes what seems to be spontaneous memories or random events might actually be links between the past and the present-and possibly, of the future as well. Perhaps the Universe (by whatever name you wish to call It, Him, Her, Them) is constantly speaking to us of these things. One of the voices by which it speaks may be that which Carl Jung called synchronicity.
For it was only a few dozen hours later that one of the photo-people called us. It was Gwendolyn.She was crying. Killed instantly in a multiple car accident somewhere in New York, Adam was gone (see Adam's Memorial). In this cycle of the events that we call our present lives, he would be forever smiling out of the book of photos, forever in our thoughts when we gathered together, forever twenty-eight years old.
What makes the story of the last few days even stranger is that when Wren called Christina to tell her the news, Chris exclaimed, "I was just talking about him the other day!" and later, Peg told of something similar. All of us had 'spontaneously' been thinking of Adam just hours before the accident. What could this mean? On first thought, believing as she does that the Universe is a compassionate place, Wren reflected that perhaps the Universe was somehow preparing us for this sad event. Upon further meditation though, it occurred to her that perhaps the Universe was rather doing something for Adam. Surrounded by the warm feelings of his friends-even without any conscious knowledge that we were indeed thinking of him-may have lifted him up during the time of his Journeying in ways that we left here may not discover until we meet with him again. It's a comforting thought.
And perhaps the next time some old friend seemingly pops into our minds for no apparent reason, we'll give him/her a call, write a note, send an email simply stating, "I was thinking of you today, my friend. I miss you. I love you. You will always be my friend." As many Pagans make ready to celebrate or acknowledge another seasonal marker at Imbolg/Lammas, why not celebrate some of the people that have made a 'mark' upon your life as well? A phone call, a note, an email..."You will always be my friend".
Photo credit: The beautiful Athame to your upper left is a waterhawk creation and is used with permission. (Web: waterhawkcreations.com)
Pagan Trads at WitchVox - 4 New Traditions Profiled!
Our Traditions section keeps growing with four new essays added this week. Read about The New England Coven of Traditional Witches by Tuan Cu Mhara of Coven Hensariad, Mixed-Gender Dianic Wicca by H. Byron Ballard, The Druidic Craft of the Wise by Ariel, and Seax Wica by Daven.
If you work within an established tradition, please consider writing something for us about it. We will accept more than one essay per tradition, so feel free to send us your own view, even if there are already other essays posted on your tradition. Please read the editorial guidelines page as well as the introduction on the Traditions page before sending your essay to Diotima
The Seasons of Our Times...
'Brigid's Day"- also called Imbolc or Candlemas- celebrates the advent of the coming of the 'seasons of light'. On Feb 1st in Ireland, parts of Wales and in the Scottish Hebrides before settling into bed on Brigid's Night, the lady or daughters of the house would spread ashes before the fireplace. Upon rising, the womenfolk would check the ashes to see if Brigid (pronounced "Breed") had etched a message for them with Her wand. To find markings in the ashes was a sign of great honor and good fortune for the entire family. Since the fertility symbolism here is quite obvious- and Brigid is often revered as a patron goddess of childbirth-these symbols could also predict a new birth in the family or a 'country marriage' (handfasting) come Beltaine (Single ladies, spread your ashes!).
Brigid is also a goddess of healing (many wells in Ireland and Scotland were-and still are to those in the know!- dedicated to Her), and so Brigid's Day is a good time to begin a healing ritual regime. Simply take your 'lightning water' (water collected from a lightning storm and considered a staple in this Witch household) or pure spring water and anoint your forehead with three drops each morning. If you are taking your Vitamin C or Echinacea tablets anyway, an alternative method would be to pour spring water over a silver coin (no lead please!) and then take three big gulps.
For the pastoral peoples in the countries where Brigid was honored, the time of Imbolc was when the sheep and goats began lactating (producing milk) again. This was great news for those families who had run out of milk products, mainly butter and cheese, over the winter months. (In fact, in parts of the Highlands, cheese was believed to be endowed with magickal properties.) For we pagans of today, perhaps this is but an interesting folknote, but for the people of old, going without such 'basics' was a real hardship. Think upon these things, and in so doing, honor your ancestors the next time that you pour milk into that first cup of coffee. For more notes about the celebration of Imbolg, check out Peg's You Call It Groundhog Day, We Call It Imbolc and other essays on the TWV Imbolc Index. Those Pagans 'down under' can also read Thoughts at Lammas by Katrina.
| Notes from a WebCrafter|
Adam Schleimer, Community Support & Weekly Updates
As noted on the Witchvox splash page, yesterday we received devastating news about our good friend Adam Schleimer of Staten Island, NY. We met Adam at Starwood in 19912. That year a few of us chose to camp in the back field of Brushwood. Over the years, and to this day, that area has become known as "Babylon Heights". Every year we invited more of our friends and a large family of 50 plus Pagans was the result the last time Wren and I were there (1996). Adam was a founding member of this wonderful family and as Wren and I reminisced this weekend we couldn't help but smile when we envisioned Adam. He was a lad filled with much light and he brought a incredible level of fun and magick to our Tribe. We dedicate our work this week to You Adam! We love you Adam and do know that your impact on so many of us will never fade away.
These are times of reflection for Wren and I as we wrap up 4 years online as the Witches' Voice and head toward the completion of 5 years, on the net, doing this work. During this coming week I hope to find some proper time to reflect on this experience and to note trends that we are seeing. Until then, I will quickly note *some* of the changes, updates and features of this past week here at TWV.
Some quick notes...
Do YOU support Pagan Creators? Yesterday we received notice that one of our best, Isaac Bonewits, had updated his thought provoking piece entitled "Freedom of Information and Supporting Pagan Creators 1.5". Witchvox is proud to mirror this piece in our notes from the webcrafter section... The final paragraph consolidates the thoughts of so many of us... As I wrap up this week's update, we can just "feel" that Superbowl energy (literally 10 miles away from us, just across the bay). Although neither Wren nor myself 'get football' we will be checking in at halftime for the Bad Boys from Boston - Aerosmith.
Sisters and brothers, your authors, musicians, speakers, webmasters, organizers and clergy can not live on blessings and goodwill alone. Please, buy their books, tapes, CDs and videos instead of stealing copies. Donate to those groups and websites who provide valuable services. Go to your high priestess' house and do her dishes once in a while, or watch her kids for an evening, or in some other fashion give her the gift of free time -- which in some circumstances can be even better than money! And please, stop criticizing authors or teachers for the "crime" of reaching out to "newbies" and "Baby Pagans" -- it's a lot more work than it seems, and we were all beginners, once upon a time. (Full Article) We found it interesting that he quoted from my own rant "Community Support, Does it Exist?" from back in 97. It is clear that 100's of thousands are flocking to this path on a regular basis and have been for years. It is also clear that so many are seeking information, teachers and the like. Ironically, our community DOES have much to offer. It still amazes me that so few actually DO support our authors, musicians, speakers, webmasters, organizers and clergy. The sad reality is that the heart and soul of my rant of disbelief from 1997 still rings true to this day. We say again..."Find ANY organization, author, musician that you like, trust or have learned from and toss them a couple of bucks. Toss them a couple of stamps. Put a dollar in an envelope and mail it to them." We have hundreds of wonderful givers in this community, they ARE burning out and they are continuing to fade away. YOU and only You can directly effect this.
To those of you that DO support Pagan Creators, you have our deepest appreciation and thanks. To our precious sponsors both past and present, thank you for what you have done for us all.
Check out Isaac's Freedom of Information and Supporting Pagan Creators 1.5 and stop by his Website for other inspirational writings.
In the Background We are in the process of designing better navigation for TWV and over these past few weeks we have added a nice little navigator to all of the pages in our Essays, HomePage archives, Wrens Nest, VoxLinks: Pagan Search Engine, Pagan Musicians and Traditions of Neo-Paganism sections. At the top of these pages you will find a 'drill down' map of where you are at that time. It is our belief that this may be the best way for you to get around TWV. Also know that we have very strong navigation links and extensive section search capabilities at the bottom of all 3, 100 of our pages. Look for much revamping in this area in the weeks to come.
I didn't know that! This is usually the response we get when we "turn people on" to the fact that our weekly home pages ARE archived in a section called (you guessed it) the Witchvox HomePage Archives. Although we didn't capture some of the weekly updates from mid 97 to mid 98 we DO have all of the others from our 4 years online... They are easily accessible and searchable. Coupled with the 2, 655 news clips that Wren has presented over the years, the Witchvox Weekly Archives paint a powerful history of the Neo-Pagan movement in the past 4 years. For a serious walk down memory lane surf to the... Witchvox HomePage Archives, You may actually find YOUR name there.
Wren's Nest Mobile Now in Action: Last week we announced the launch of Wren's nest "mobile edition" for PPP (Palm Pilot Pagans). Surprisingly we received many email thank you's for this move, turns out this IS of value to many. For Live Access to the 'Nest... Point your mobile Internet appliance to http://www.witchvox.com/mobile_nest.html. Big time Witch Hugs go out to J. Brad Hicks (Web) for inspiration, beta testing and beaucoup tips on mobile net configurations.
Happy Imbolc Everyone!
Fritz Jung (WebCrafter - Witchvox)
January 29th, 2001
Classifieds: Requests for Information, Information at Your Request...
Merry Meet! I am Duke Torre from Cebu, Philippines; and am a student of AMA Computer College taking up Computer Science. Anyway, I need a coven from US to help me for my case study for Technical Writing Class. I need to make some interviews (through questionnaires by e-mail), of any single coven, with at least 15-20 people, then send it back to me before March (with some photos of members, tools and anything else possible from the coven) for me to make it into a book. I will be glad to pay for any services or finances (like postage, photocopying, etc.) made. Thank You and Blessed Be...Email... email@example.com
Texas Pagan News posts regular updates on the George Bush administration from a Pagan perspective. This week, TXPN looks at An Update on George W's Plans and The Bush Administration and Gay/Environmental Issues. Lots of other news for local Texas Pagans as well.
Are you one those "environmental extremists' that certain frozen-in-time religious fundamentalists are always whining about? National Arbor Day is celebrated each year on the last Friday in April! "J. Sterling Morton of Nebraska City initiated the first Arbor Day, the tree planters' holiday, in 1872. Today The National Arbor Day Foundation is the world's largest tree-planting environmental organization. A nonprofit organization with nearly a million members, The National Arbor Day Foundation provides more than 8 million trees for planting throughout America each year."
Staff Openings at NMR. New Moon Rising is a creative, networking venture. We are looking for a few dedicated, creative, self-motivated people who are keenly interested and involved in magick and paganism. We have an International audience and have no bias in magickal or pagan traditions. However, we maintain a focus on the Western Traditions of magick and paganism. Compensation is negotiable for all positions and range from complementary subscriptions with access to salaried. Currently we have openings for the following. However job descriptions are still being prepared and will be linked to this page. You may email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
| Bardic Circle Continues at Witchvox (Week #6)|
Musicians Tell Their Stories.
We Kick off this weeks Bardic Circle at Witchvox with a powerful piece by the Alchemy VII entitled "The Magick".
"I wanted to write a song about the Magick in all of us. It started out to be called Magick Rise, but we decided that sounded like bread baking. So it became The Magick.
As with alot of our material I bring in an idea and some chords. The rest of the musicians are truley magicians when it comes to interpretting my version of chords. They call it the key of Gina. This song took a while to come together.
Some songs seem like they just happen and others struggle for birth. I believe we almost gave up on getting it to work. Then all of a sudden it came together and became the tilte song of the CD."
-- For the complete experience surf to The Magick bardic circle page.
Karen Has Krayons:
The second offering is a tune called "Oblivion Falling " by Karen Has Krayons. (love this name)
"This was really an exploration on my part, a challenge of how to link the animate world with ageless ideas. It was really a synthesis of putting oneself in the concept and outside the idea. A process of becoming a thought."
-- For the complete experience download... Oblivion Falling
(Go to Bardic Circle Index)
Pagan Musicians offer Press Releases...
This week received two press release from Pagan Musicians (Chris???)...
Zorah Staar Cyber-releases New CD of "Pagan Pop": With the recent creation of the Pagan Pop Music website (www.paganpopmusic.com), Zorah Staar's new CD is now bopping its way through cyberspace! Zorah Staar is a songwriter, singer and musician who makes "pagan pop" - also described as "radically-uplifting New Age music that rocks, bops and boogies you across the dance floor." Her songs blend lyrics about love, the earth, the Goddess, and other age-old pagan themes with wild new pop, disco and Celtic rock sounds, plus some gentler ballads to catch your breath. Imagine an infectious fusion somewhere between Tori Amos and Loreena McKennitt, all ecstatically played by Zorah (on guitar and piano) and the magical musicians on her new CD. (Press Release)
Velvet Hammer's "StoryBook" on Ebay "For those of you who have written and asked to purchase copies of our 'Storybook' cd (which has been out of print for over two years now) -- we have a surprise -- Four copies (in original shrinkwrap) are going up on EBay to be auctioned off. All proceeds will go toward the recording of the new album, which we officially began recording on the first full moon & lunar eclipse of 2001 : ) We're hoping to have it finished and ready for release by Fall. It will be at least a few more days before the cd's are posted to EBay -- we'll let you know when and where to go ASAP ! (These will be the last Storybook cd's to carry the Velvet Hammer name -- if Storybook is re-released in the future, the packaging will be different and it will be released as a compilation of songs by Ginger Doss, Lynda Millard and Dana Davis)"... (Press Release) -- DreamTrybe on the Web: dreamtrybe.com
For the complete press release and one of the most powerful "commercial free" celebrations of the magick of the Pagan musician visit the Witchvox Pagan Music Pages. (Also note that the above two artists have committed to offering a Bardic Circle story of one of there tunes).
| Pagan Perspectives|
WitchVox Question of the Week!
Last week, we asked, What Are The Boundaries? Wherein Lies Accountability? That was a tough one. Generally most agreed that the bounds of acceptable behavior resides with the individual and that person's immediate family or group. Most trads, groups, families have some sort of rules that members are encouraged to follow. That said, how to respond to the outside Pagan communities where these same rules may not be the 'accepted' norm of one's own group remains difficult without lapsing into a form of McCarthyism. However how to spread the word about those whose behaviors may be considered indefensible by any Pagan standards remains dicey. What proof would be needed and who should be responsible for basically 'turning the offender in' still is an uncomfortable situation to contemplate.-- View the Responses.
This week we ask:
What Do You Think About Bush's 'Faith-Based' Initiative Plan? Pres. George Bush says that he will push a 'faith-based' social program this coming week that he hopes will grant federal money (taxpayer dollars) to fund religious groups doing social work. Does this plan violate the separation of church and state? If those federal bucks become available should Pagan religious groups make a grab for them, too? Or is this proposed religious feeding frenzy for secular federal money really a subtle plot to further bolster the Christian Radical Right's power to proselytize to the masses and, as Americans United believes, further erode the church-state wall?-- Post YOUR Opinion or view the Responses of others
"At times I feel as if I am spread out over the landscape and inside things, and am myself living in every tree, in the splashing of the waves, in the clouds and the animals that come and go, in the procession of the seasons."
- (Carl G. Jung; Memories, Dreams, Reflections, Ch. 8).
In Your Service,
Wren Walker & Fritz Jung
The Witches' Voice
Year 2001 - January, 29th.
Location: Clearwater¼, Florida
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