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Weekly Update: 4/22/2002

Author: Witchvox Central
Posted: April 22nd. 2002
Times Viewed: 4,505

The Healing That Is Ours and Nature's

Thinking about the state of our environment can be a rather discouraging prospect these days. Glaciers are disappearing worldwide, fisheries are dying off, and pollution is rampant, while oil companies do all they can to open ANWR to drilling, industry spin machines grind out daily doses of propaganda to convince us that everything is really OK, and industry lobbyists do their level best to restrain governmental regulations that seek to improve the health of the environment.

What can one person do? The problem is huge, the rationalizations easily found. A number of people convince themselves that someone else will take care of the problem - God, the gods, the scientists, the government, the "space brethren". "After all", these folks reason (with a certain undeniable logic), "one person among billions is just a drop in the ocean, and it will take widespread changes in human behavior to make any difference. Only those who can affect others on a large scale can make a real difference. Not me. So why even try?"

Another favorite rationalization for not doing what you can to heal the Earth is the belief that we must "hit bottom" first. The parallels between our rampant consumerism and the psychology of addiction are not hard to find, and some people reason (again, with a certain logic) that widespread social change will only be brought about by a deep and pervasive shock that will change our collective behavior.

So why bother to sort the recycling, write the letter, spend the extra few cents to buy organic? Because we are Pagans. Because we know that the Divine is inextricably entwined with the Earth in all its manifestations, and our spiritual understanding is tied to the land, sea and sky. Because we are magickal people, in touch with the gods, the Earth, the spirits of Nature. To honor what we revere requires us to live our lives with a certain level of integrity and self-awareness, and to act in ways that reflect our beliefs.

Not only can one person make a difference, but for Pagans, the effort we expend is the work that will bring each of us into closer relationship with our gods and with Nature.

Wendell Berry writes, in his book of poems, Sabbaths:
There are two healings: Nature's
and ours and nature's. Nature's
will come in spite of us, after us,
over the graves of its wasters, as it comes
to the forsaken fields. The healing
that is ours and nature's will come
if we are willing, if we are patient,
if we know the way, if we will do the work.

We are not just a drop in the ocean. Pagans are seekers who work constantly to expand our understanding of Nature, and the healing that is ours and Nature's must begin with the healing of the relationship between humans and the Earth. Most Pagans make this relationship one of their primary spiritual priorities, and so for us, healing and deepening the relationship is part of our personal spiritual work, something we must do regardless of whether or not we think we will make a difference in the greater scheme of things.

However, because we work in partnership with the gods, the Elements and the spirits of Nature, because, in short, we live magickal lives, our actions reverberate far and wide on the energetic levels from which physical matter springs. If we take even the simplest of actions with focused, magickal intent, then we magnify the effects of that action on the subtle planes, and it is from those planes that change always begins.

By shifting and changing our personal energy, or chi, by healing our personal relationship with the Earth through means both magickal and mundane, we make a difference in the same way a guitar string, when plucked, sets the other strings on the instrument vibrating, though they were never touched.

Pagans work with the gods, and, so invited, the gods work through us to catalyze change on a grander scale than we can comprehend. Miracles happen when we work with the Divine, and the astonishing human capacity for solving problems continues to expand the limits of what is considered possible. Miracles are not restricted to events such as burning bushes that speak and humans changed into pillars of salt. Life itself is an exquisite miracle, and as our society awakens to the ultimately spiritual nature of this gift, we will see miraculous healing occur. But our participation is essential.

So next time you sort the recycling, help clean a stream, write a letter to your representative, or make a donation to your favorite environmental organization, put all of your magickal training into that action. An action taken by a trained mind with magickal intent spreads like ripples from a stone thrown into water and has influence on the subtle planes and other levels we may not even be aware of.

Let your actions and your thoughts swell the tide of intent that will sweep over the Earth in the upcoming years and bring much-needed healing. Don't wait until we hit bottom - start now. Be willing, be patient, know the way, do the work. Live every day as a Pagan, and watch the magick happen.

Diotima Mantineia
Tree-hugging Dirt Worshipper
& Associate Editor, TWV
Monday, April 22nd., 2002

Image credits: Photos for this feature... "Standing stone" by Caroline and "Waterfall" by Sylvallah. The 'bee photo' on our intro page was taken by Diotima.

The Witches' Voice presents...

  • From the Waterfront: Sandra Ingerman's Transmutation Work - by Caroline Kenner
    Last night, my child woke me from a deep dream: I was standing on a bridge over a wide river, looking down into black reflective water under a night sky. I was singing from my heart. I sang a song of purity, a song of love to the Divinity we know as Water. I was doing in my dreams just that which I seek to do while awake: purifying the Waters of the Earth by spiritual means. This work has been revealed to my teacher, Sandra Ingerman.

    Sandra Ingerman has, until now, been identified with shamanism, and especially, soul retrieval healing. She has published two books on soul retrieval, a traditional form of shamanic healing lost to the West until Sandra began her work. Sandra has been on the faculty of the Foundation for Shamanic Studies for many years. Last year, Sandra's new book came out, Medicine for the Earth (Three Rivers Press, a division of Random House). In this work, Sandra describes how to attain a state of consciousness which causes the transmutation of toxic substances in water.

    In repeated experiments, Sandra and her students have been able to change the pH of water, deliberately polluted with toxic acids and bases, as much as 2 points on the pH scale. That is a hundred-fold change, from toxic and fatal if consumed to just smelly, with a foul taste. It is, as far as we know, the only repeatable experiment... (Full Article)

  • Pagans and the Environment: Leaders or Laggards? - by H. Byron Ballard
    As I write this, I am sitting by a lake surrounded by 1600 acres of YMCA camp. In the past couple of days, we've had a sampling of available spring weather: cold, wet, sunny, foggy, hot enough to burn fair Irish skin.

    It is almost painfully beautiful, even though the deciduous trees haven't leafed yet. Canada geese honk us awake in the morning and spring peepers serenade us at night. The nearly full moon lights the gravel road back to our cabin.

    It smells good here, too. Overlooking the dirty socks of dozens of fifth-grade girls, there is the moist and mushroomy fragrance of the Earth as she wakens. And soon we will celebrate this amazing web of life with a relatively new holiday called Earth Day.

    Let me be clear at the outset--I like Earth Day. The flags, the picnics, the good intentions. It makes me smile to be lectured about recycling by children with earnest faces. I like it when Peter Jennings and the other talking heads show us the touching Earth Day festivities around the nation. Earth Day--what a great idea.

    But Earth Day always falls to 'holiday syndrome'--it comes and goes and we don't have to think about it again for another year. What a relief! We may make a half-hearted attempt to compost or take a shorter shower or walk someplace we would normally drive. We see news blurbs about oil spills or burning... (Full Article)

  • How's the Weather There? Or, Every Day is Earth Day - by Peg Aloi
    I write to you from Boston, where last week we had a day that hit NINETY-THREE degrees (breaking the previous record for that day by eleven degrees!), and yesterday we had an earthquake measuring 5.1, and tonight, I hear, it's going to snow. Global warming? NAAAAHHHH... .

    Today was Earth Day. Did you celebrate?

    A picnic in a favorite park, perhaps? An outdoor benefit concert with inspirational speakers? (I went to an Earth Day concert in Central Park a few years ago: Mario Cuomo spoke, and the B-52s played. And there sure was a lot of trash on the ground afterwards. Same with an Earth Day concert on the Esplanade in Boston several years ago. Cool bands, great speakers, boatloads of garbage.). Maybe you participated in a community clean-up effort? Or maybe you just did some things to make your own environment more earth-friendly: put in low-flow shower heads or toilets, or planted herbs in pots on your windowsill, or finally recycled all those empty bottles, or replaced high-watt bulbs with more energy-efficient ones. Or perhaps, being a pagan or a witch, you performed a ritual to heal the planet, or created a special altar in your garden.

    Good for you!

    What will you do tomorrow?

    Every day is earth day, you know.

    I was born in 1963. That means I was coming of age during the environmentally conscious 1970s. I remember Carter implementing energy-saving laws, I remember nation-wide advertising campaigns about using LESS of everything... (Full Article)

  • Ongoing Honoring of the Earth - by Aurora
    As Pagans, we care about the Earth with a strength and immediacy which society at large does not necessarily possess. We do not have to limit ourselves to appreciating and caring for the Earth on just one day. We can do our best to care for and honor the Earth on an ongoing basis.

    Here are some things we can do throughout the year.

    Of course everyone has heard of recycling glass, aluminum, plastic and newspaper. How about recycling:

    Plastic bags. The bags we get from the grocery store can be reused. I use mine to carry lunches to work, and to pick up dog poo. A grocery store local to my area (Maryland) has collection bins solely for plastic grocery bags. You can recycle your bags simply by dropping them off. Maybe other grocery stores offer similar opportunities. Even better than recycling plastic bags is to buy sturdy tote bags for groceries and reuse them over and over again... (Full Article)

  • Healing the Universe - by Karl Lembke
    When many people speak of healing the planet, or repairing the world, they think of the physical things that are wrong. Pollution here, aspecies going extinct there, ugliness over there, and so on. I myself am abit of a heretic. I avoid the bandwagon of ecological activism. One of the perversities of the universe is that sometimes the act which seems themost simple and obvious is the lest helpful, and is actually harmful.

    An example is recycling. It would seem that recyclingis the obvious thing to do in all cases. After all, isn't it always better to re-use any material, ratherthan dig up, build or grow new? Sometimes, though, givenour current technology, recycling can use more resourcesthan are used by manufacturing a product from raw materials.And using more resources means having a greater impact onthe environment. Paper, in particular, is one of theseresources. The environmental costs of trucking old paperto a factory, bleaching, and reprocessing it are stillvery high, and although the jury is out on the subject, I believe it's less damaging to use new paper than toreuse the old.

    Does that mean you should give up recycling completely?No. Aluminum recycles very easily, and it costs a lotless to reuse processed aluminum than it does to minebauxite ore. And here's the measure I find very suggestive... (Full Article)

Powerful Environmental Resources:
If you'd like to participate in building this critical resource,
kindy contact Diotima

From Wren's Nest (as we posted our update)....
Earth Day in Modesto

Posted: April 22nd, 2002 at 6:24 AM -- Article: 4173

Source: The Modesto Bee
Author: Ted Benson

As if to say "thank you," Mother Nature bestowed a flawless sunny Saturday for the 13th annual Earth Day festivities in Modesto.

"We need to be conscious that to some degree, everything on Earth is alive and needs to be taken care of," said Chris Lohman, a member of the Fellowship of the Earth, a pagan church.

Lohman and fellow pagans manned a booth at the park Saturday and were well-received by the crowd, he said. Though it has taken on a negative meaning in the mainstream, he said, paganism is a religion that centers around nature. -- [Full Story]

Notes from a Pagan WebCrafter
Thank You CMA! Thank You Dio and friends!

Greetings Witches, Wiccans, Pagans and Heathens!

Wren and I have just returned from a wonderfully healing and rewarding weekend in Texas at the CMA Beltaine Festival. We will be glowing for weeks. We plan on doing a proper thank you/review of our experience on next weeks update with both pictures and stories.

Taking a weekend off (stealing critcal time we need to do this update properly) would not have happened if it weren't for the hard work of Diotima and the fine authors listed above. We are thrilled to simply 'turn you on' to these inspiring articles about a planet that is near and dear to our spirits.

In closing, allow me to thank all of you who support this site both spiritually and financially. You have changed the world. You have built something very powerful.

In your service,

Fritz Jung
Co-Founder - The Witches' Voice
Monday, April 22nd., 2002

Next Month's Adult Pagan Topics:
    Publication Date: May 12th
    Submission Deadline: May 5th

  • Beltane
    How do you celebrate Beltane? What is its meaning to you, and what myths do you associate with it? Also, since it is a cross-quarter, do you celebrate it on the traditional day of May 1, or on the astrological midpoint of 15 degrees of Taurus? -- Go Here for details
  • Spirit Guides
    What non-physical entities do you work with? What are your contacts in the realm of Spirit? Familiars? Fairies? Angels? Loas? Tell us who you are in communication with, how you contact them, and why. -- Go Here for details

Next Month's Young Witch/Pagan Topics:
    Publication Date: May 5th
    Submission Deadline: April 28th

  • Beltane
    How do you celebrate Beltane? What is its meaning to you, and what myths do you associate with it? Also, since it is a cross-quarter, do you celebrate it on the traditional day of May 1, or on the astrological midpoint of 15 degrees of Taurus? -- Go Here for details
  • Spirit Guides
    What non-physical entities do you work with? What are your contacts in the realm of Spirit? Familiars? Fairies? Angels? Loas? Tell us who you are in communication with, how you contact them, and why. -- Go Here for details

See Ya all next week and Happy Earth Day to the Mother...

In YOUR Service,

The WitchVox Staff
The Witches' Voice Inc.
Monday, April 22nd., 2002

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