Weekly Update: 8/11/2003|
Author: Witchvox Central
Posted: August 11th. 2003
Times Viewed: 4,828
|Starwood 2003... This week we are honored to feature an indepth review of the famous Starwood Festival... Experience this review by Clicking HERE|
I have a tune playing over and over in my mind as I sit here. It's an old one and some might say it is a pretty corny one, too. Those of you who share my generation will probably recognize it and hopefully those who don't will at least bear with me. The tune is the theme song from the movie, "To Sir, With Love" and a portion of the lyrics go something like this:
"But how do you thank someone who has taken you from crayons to perfume? It isn't easy, but I'll try."
Okay. Forget the crayons to perfume part. I still use both on occasion. But it really is hard to convey in mere words the incredible gift and the many blessings that YOU have bestowed upon us here at TWV this past week. And like LuLu, I have to try.
To say that Fritz and I have been discouraged of late would be an understatement. As many of you know, we are all volunteers here. While this is a full time job, it is a full time job that follows another full time (and paying) job for most of The Witches' Voice staff. We are a small group of ordinary people working very hard in our 'spare time' on a labor of love. But there comes a time once in a while when one looks around and just has to ask, "Is this work still useful?" Because if it is not providing a real benefit that people still want or will still use, there is really no reason for it to exist.
And that is where we were. Asking ourselves if The Witches' Voice was still useful and valuable as a service. The financial support was not there although the web traffic was. Conflicting data indeed. We were drawing some of our own conclusions from that and we were not too optimistic in our outlook. Finally, it came down to the wire. We simply did not have the funds to continue and it was time to make a decision. But the decision was one that we could not make alone. Because it was also up to you. The Witches' Voice is and always has been your community resource site.
So we asked. And you responded. You responded in emails. You responded by spreading the word. You responded by sending in the financial support that TWV needs to keep going. To the question, "Should The Witches' Voice continue?" you responded with a resounding "Yes!" And thanks to you -- to ALL of you -- it shall.
And that brings me back to the same emotional starting point. How DO you thank someone who has changed your life? Who has given you a renewed sense of purpose? And who has thus inspired you to give your very best in return? Of course, first you say 'thank you'.
Thank you all very, very much! The response from you was so very far beyond what we could have ever have imagined and we are still filled with awe and very humbled in gratitude. Support continues to come in and we really appreciate that, too. It looks like TWV is going to be around for quite some time to come. And that is because of you -- and you -- and all of you!
We have a lot of new sponsors (Yay!) and a lot of new sponsor information to format. Fritz is working hard at that. Since we are new to PayPal -- and never dreamed that we would be dealing with this large number of new sponsor entries -- it will take us a while to sort it all out and format it to interact with our databases (online and off). Fritz has put his every spare moment into doing just that this week and we trust that we will have your kits and verifications sent out to you and your TWV online listings properly flagged very soon. -- With Love, Wren.
YOUR NEW Sponsor Listing(s): Due to last weeks volume of new sponsors and donations we are a bit behind in processing. Frankly speaking this influx of support took us by surprise and we spent most of the week scrambling to write systems that integrate with our current networking section, our local databases, our soon to be launched WOTW v8.0 and our new paypal account (echecks, credit cards and 'instant payments') .
IF YOU became a sponsor this past week do know that Your listings (that match the email you signed up as a sponsor with) will be flagged as "Witchvox Sponsor' by weeks end. - It's very important to note that you must already HAVE a listing in the Witchvox section to be flagged as a sponsor... and again... We key/link this from the email address that you submitted when you signed up as a sponsor... Sponsor kits and Sponsor Cards should be in the mail to you by weeks end as well... If you don't see your listing flagged as a sponsor or don't receive your sponsor kit in the mail, feel free to contact us with details of your sponsorship.
Our profound thanks go out to all of you that choose to keep this site and this 'not for profit organization' alive and on the web to serve this wonderful community.
Witches' Voice Staff
Wren, Fritz, Peg, Dio, Christina, Steve, Darragh and Waterhawk
by Don Two Eagles WaterHawk
Being that we just finished with the Sirius Rising Festival, we didn't have to pack and go, as Starwood... is Brushwood Bound! Monday (the day between the worlds, so to speak) rained cats and dogs and other pets. I give a lot of credit to the ACE people and Starwood volunteers, and Brushwood staff, as they had to set up Starwood in the rain. Don't know how many pavilions they put up that day, but there were many popping up all over the field.. So let's start by giving some kudos' and gratitude to all the people who made Starwood happen... thank you all. Its a pleasure to see people working for the people... damn refreshing! Don't know how long it rained, but as I fell asleep, I started to hear a faint sound... squish... .squish... .suish! Little did I know that that sound was going to become more and more familiar to me as the... [Full Two Page Review]
Thank the Goddess for Maters - A Lugh Day Tale
by Mirlin Poplar
It's been awhile since I actually wrote something path related. So I thought I'd tell you folks about the recent Lughnasadh events around our way.
My daughter and I have been writing to each other now for six months after having been separated from each other since she was a baby. I was supposed to go see her last month in Long Island but unfortunately we had to postpone the trip till the end of this month. Recently we have been telephoning each other back and forth.
She called me about 4 days ago and as we were chatting she said, "Don't you have a holiday coming up?" I replied something like, "Well yes, as a matter of fact, on August 1 or 2, we observe what is known as the 1st harvest, some traditions call it Lammas, and others call it Lughnasadh, which was named after the God..." [Full Article]
Witch Hunts - Exposing The Lies
by Kerr Cuhulain
(Over 300,000 Page Views...)
This Week... Professional Pagans Respond to Michael Coren
Michael Coren is a Toronto-based writer and broadcaster. He can be emailed at email@example.com his web site is www.michaelcoren.com. On 2 August 2003 the Toronto Sun newspaper published a column by Christian journalist Michael Coren, "Witch way to prison?" This 749 word article reflects the alarm on the part of fundamentalist Christians like Coren to the growth of our Pagan community.
Coren's article commences by reporting that many prisons now have Wiccan chaplains and that "Just like representatives of Christianity, Judaism, Islam and other faiths, Canadian law and the Canadian Charter will give witches full access to our incarcerated criminals."
Coren attempts to make his article humorous. "One can only hope they won't be teaching them how to make the cell doors disappear or the warders invisible", he quips. Yet the content of the rest of the article is anything but amusing. "Knowing that every good Canadian would delight in this oh-so-progressive adventure", Coren says, adding that "the public will have to pay for [it]" he goes to the Pagan Federation Web site to do research. "What fun it turned out to be. The organization represents witches, druids, goddess worshippers and various others. As for Satan, visitors to the site are given an essay praising satanism and providing a link to the Church of Satan Web site.". .... [Full Article]
|New Essay Topic... "Practical Magick" |
Do you think that magick is a practical tool that can and should be used to help you and others get through the ups and downs of daily life, or do you use it solely as a tool for personal transformation? Or perhaps you feel that personal transformation *is* practical! Let us know what you think about the practical applications of magick.
The deadline for this topic is September 21st., but we will post the essays as we receive them. Please keep in mind that we will not post responses to previously posted essays.
Your voice counts! Please consider adding your thoughts to this collection of essays and join in the exchange of ideas throughout the worldwide Pagan community.
Any thoughtful essays of over 1,000 words will be published. Please read our editorial guidelines first, and send your essay to Diotima
NEW 'Practical Magick' Essays
Speaking only for myself, I believe that magick is quite practical. But this may simply be because of my personal definitions of magick and practicality. To me, practicality equals results, and magick is the art of changing consciousness at Will (among other things). The ability to change consciousness at Will is a powerful tool, with direct and immediate effects in the manifest world, and thus must be considered practical, because it gets results.
I am, fundamentally, an energy structure. My job is, fundamentally, and energy structure. When the energy field of my job envelops and subsumes my energy field, then I am controlled by my job, and my life suffers because of the imbalance... [Full Article]
"Twinkle-twinkle-twink," says the television speaker. The screen shows Samantha's face morphing back into a more normal expression after having repeatedly wrinkled her nose. Oh what kind of hi-jinks was Tabitha up to this time? What kind of magical mother-in-law-born disaster did Samantha have to correct? I tell you one thing, she certainly knew about the practical uses of magick, even as she struggled to live a normal "mortal" life. Darrin was a lucky man.
But real life is not "Bewitched," and real magick is pretty far removed from what was portrayed on the boob tube. As real Witches, we live each day in a world that challenges us to find a way to put our spiritual beliefs into practice. Almost all religions, including the varied beliefs most of us practice, began with the purpose of explaining how the world came to be and how systems that are hard to understand work. A closely related second purpose for the existence of belief systems is to show adherents ways to deal with day-to- day problems and the stresses of... [Full Article]
First I suppose we should establish a line as to what is considered practical and what is not. Shoes are considered practical, if they are comfortable. Computer software programs are considered practical if they are user-friendly. Cookbooks are considered practical if they are easy to understand and foolproof. So one would consider something easy to use and understand to be practical? There just seems to be so much more to this than what any one person thinks is practical and what one doesn't. To me practical is something that benefits my family and me. Makes my home easier and better to live in than someone else's and makes me look at the world as a nice place in which not to be afraid of my own shadow. To be able to relate to my intimate world and not be so consumed with that which I cannot control.
It is true in today's society we have more say-so over what we can do and that too is considered practical but yet there is still so much more involvement to be had than just politics. We use fairly practical reasoning to raise our... [Full Article]
NEW Tradition Profile...
Celtic Reconstructionist Paganism
Composed by: Erynn Rowan Laurie, Aedh Rua O'Morrighu, John Machate, Kathryn Price Theatana, Kym Lambert ní Dhoireann, ed. by Erynn Rowan Laurie
The idea of reconstructionist Pagan religions has been around since at least the mid 1970s and is discussed in Margot Adler's 1979 edition of Drawing Down the Moon. Some organizations, like ADF, have been doing reconstruction work for many years, but their focus was never purely or particularly Celtic.
Many individuals were in dialogue about what constituted genuine early Celtic religion and spirituality, and how to educate others about the differences between Wicca and the various forms of Celtic Paganism. These discussions initially took place in Pagan publications and around the fire at Pagan gatherings starting in the early 1980s. With the growth of the internet, dialogue on PODSnet Celtic, the GEnie network, Celtic-L and other online forums became the critical factor leading to a rapid spread of information after 1989. The phrase Celtic Reconstructionist (CR) began to gain common use during 1992 and 1993 to describe individuals who were trying to understand, research, and re-create an authentically Celtic path for modern Pagans.... [Full Article]
New Book Releases for August
The Book section [Link] at Witchvox continues to be hot and since this past September it has clocked in visits from Pagans all over the planet.
New this month...  Alternagyrl Horoscopes 2004 by Mister Reusch and Maria Shaw [Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd.] --  Llewellyn's 2004 Astrological Calendar by artwork by Kris Waldherr [Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd.] --  Llewellyn's 2004 Astrological Pocket Planner by Llewellyn [Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd.] --  Llewellyn's 2004 Daily Planetary Guide by Llewellyn [Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd.] --  Llewellyn's 2004 Herbal Almanac by Llewellyn [Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd.] --  Llewellyn's 2004 Magical Almanac by Llewellyn [Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd.] --  Llewellyn's 2004 Moon Sign Book by Llewellyn [Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd.] --  Llewellyn's 2004 Sun Sign Book by Llewellyn [Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd.] --  Llewellyn's 2004 Witches' Calendar by original artwork by Kathleen Edwards [Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd.] --  Llewellyn's 2004 Witches' Datebook by original artwork by Kathleen Edwards [Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd.] --  Llewellyn's 2004 Witches' Spell-A-Day Almanac by Llewellyn [Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd.] --  The Necronomicon Files by Harms and Gonce [Weiser Books] --  Exploring Shamanism by Hillary S. Webb [New Page Books] --  Aradia or the Gospel of the Witches by Charles G. Leland w/ Intro by A.J. Drew [New Page Books] --  A Wiccan Bible: Exploring the Mysteries of the Craft From Birth to Summerland by A.J. Drew [New Page Books] --  Magical Meditations by Yasmine Galenorn [Crossing Press] --  Ghost of a Chance by Yasmine Galenorn [Berkley Prime Crime] --
Visit Pagan Books at Witchvox today to see what's new and what's HOT.
Released: August - 2003
List Price: $19.99
Times Viewed: 72,187
Featured This Week...
A Wiccan Bible: Exploring the Mysteries of the Craft From Birth to Summerland
Author: A.J. Drew
Publisher: New Page Books
Category: Wicca Level: All
"A book or collection of writings constituting the sacred text of a religion."
-The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
For thousands of years we have been told that God was a man. Then someone reminded us of when God was a woman. Now we have a reference for the sensible folk who have always felt it takes two. If you have ever thought there was more to religion than ancient rituals performed for reasons unknown, then this book will show you exactly what you have been looking for. If you have already come to the realization that Wicca is the religion for you, then this book will help fill in those many blanks that have been left by other books. "
Where To Buy: Titles can be published through the publisher direct by calling 800-227-3371. Otherwise look on your favorite websites, stop by your favorite metaphysical store, or go to your local Barnes & Noble to pick up your copy!
Hot link to --> Pagan Shops in Your Town
Hot link to --> Pagan Shops on the Net
|Options: Surf to: [Author's Website] Surf to: [Publisher's Website] |
Some of Last Week's Features at Witchvox...
| 48 Hours Later... Well, praise the Gods (and our beloved Witchvox sponsors) for not-so-small miracles. When we posted the news of our financial situation 48 hours ago and asked for your help, we expected perhaps a few dozen responses. Our crystal ball must have been low on batteries that day because we never envisioned the type of real response that our plea might generate. |
Thanks to the generous support from over 300 new sponsors (who pledged/sent amounts anywhere between $2-$250.), we now have enough funding for the rest of this year and a little more as a hedge against emergencies.
The response from you really was incredible. (It was more than that -- much, much more -- but we are at a loss for words right now and will expound more about this in the next update. Your emails and phone messages -- so full of kindness, concern and encouragement -- moved us to tears on more than one occasion.) And since we've always been honest with you, we feel it only right to let you know that the initial emergency financial situation has resolved.
So thank you to all of you who have come forward in the past two days. We will work at getting your sponsor kits and/or a verification of your donation out to you to as soon as possible. Please be patient. We never expected this level of support, (or this volume of email) and it will take a while to match up all the PayPal contributions/ personal checks with the info already in our database. Present sponsors or listed contacts will be flagged. And because we care about your privacy, we will not list you publicly without your permission.
And if you would still like to send something, we certainly will adore you for doing so. All future funds contributed will continue to put us further ahead and securely into the upcoming year. We are upfront sort of folks here and we simply couldn't continue to accept your hard earned cash before making you are aware of these updated facts on our financial situation. We hope that you will continue to support this community resource throughout the year.
So we love you, we thank you and we promise to personally pummel anyone who dares to say to us that Pagans do not care about 'community'. [Full Weekly Statement]
A Huge UPDATE - Last week we featured a passionate Rant from Wren detailing our frustration with the theft of our good name (for personal profit), community reactions, attacks on other Pagans, and much to think about... Also featured this week: Details on how you can support TWV with your credit card via PayPal, timely Witchvox reviews of 'Sirius Rising' by Don/Daniella Waterhawk and 'Hands of Change' by Steven E. Repko, a power new piece by Kerr, a wonderful new Trad profile on Celtic Reconstructionist Paganism and your first round of Practical Magick Essays. It's also worth noting that last week saw a massive amount of new networking submissions for YOUR area (over 1,100 new events, groups, Pagans, links etc...). To experience these features simply scroll down on this page.
Want Some Milque with that Toast...
"In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock."" *
"I mean it, Wren. This sort of crap has got to stop." I could hear My Friend's anger and frustration crackling through the phone. Even as my mind started to comprehend what he was telling me, one cluster of brain cells still took a few seconds off in order to note that it was probably a very good thing indeed that we owned a cordless phone. If I had been directly connected to anything directly connected to my old Friend, I am sure that I would have been blown off of the balcony. The resulting electrical arc might then have set off the fire alarm... and that surely would have caused the cats to scatter in three of the four directions -- but not before kicking over the potted fern (again) or dumping their water goblet and soaking the carpet (again) -- and I was already having a bad enough day as it was.... [... continued]
Sirius Rising 2003
by Don and Daniella WaterHawk
What a trip Daniella and I had, getting to Brushwood this year. We arrived 3 days late (blew our transmission=$2500..ka ching), stayed in crappy hotels till it was fixed, but made it nonetheless. Pulled into Brushwood and was warmly greeted by Theresa & Darlene Barney (owners) and a whole slew of wonderful people that we only get to see once a year. All info/registration stuff were in an envelope for us ready to be signed, and then down to the field we went. And at the field it was in full swing.....driving by the Stone Circle, we saw the morning meeting in progress with a large group of people ( thanks to those that facilitated in our place), children running around the pool area and colors and sounds that you can only hear when one is at Brushwood. Because of our late... [Full Review]
The 6th Annual Hands of Change Pagan Picnic
by Steven Repko
Saturday August 2, 2003 Lammas Weekend. After hideous weather reports all week the 6th Annual Hands of Change Pagan Picnic, went off without a hitch. I was told that it poured like crazy at 10:00 AM, but by the opening circle at 11:00 AM and for the rest of the day not a drop fell, in fact it turned out to be a really nice summer day. Johnson Park is a beautifully green spot right on the river with tons of shade, the smell of burgers and the rich forest floor helped provide the perfect backdrop for this event.
This year's picnic was particularly auspicious, as this was the 5th Coven anniversary of Hands of Change, Happy Five Guys! Members from many of the covens and groups in the state were on hand to share in the reverie along with a big pile of solo attendees and pagan families. This year's sabbat theme was the coven as a family and you would have thought that this was a family reunion if you didn't know better; it just felt that nice.
| West Memphis 3!|
by Peg Aloi
Damien Echols, Jason Baldwin and Jessie Misskelley, Jr. were teenagers when they were arrested and convicted for the murder of three children in their conservative, mostly-Christian community. These guys have been in prison for more then TEN YEARS now. If not for the effect of various media, and efforts by supporters to make sure the media continued to cover their case, their plight would not be known to the world at large. In 1996, a documentary film called Paradise Lost was released that had a significant impact on their plight, and people far beyond the small Arkansas town where this happened were now learning about what has come to be seen as a travesty of American justice. Interviews and articles in various news media followed, including The Witches' Voice . It's an important issue for us, since Damien was involved with Wicca at the time of his arrest, and it was his supposed "dabbling in the occult" which made the local police (who were obsessed with "satanic cults" at the time) finger him as a suspect in the first place... [Full Article]
The Bard and the Poser...
Over the years, I have seen a set of character traits in action which effect our community in ways that are both positive and negative. This archetypal set is: The Bard and the Poser.
The strength of the Bard is that of brilliant story teller, learned advocate, truthful historian, imaginative teacher, wise counselor and creative artist. From song writers to programmers, within groups and as solitaries, our people use this Companion archetype to create in many ways and forms. Bards inspire others to reach for their fullest potential and they show us how to tap into our creative being.... [Full Article]
Did Women Invent the Ancient Art of Yoga?
by Vicki Noble
My Awakening to Yoga
Yoga "happened" to me in 1976. Without any conscious foundation or prior framework of understanding, yoga erupted from within my body as a shamanistic healing crisis that came ready-made with its own solution. My chronic illness had become physically debilitating after ten years of miserable tension headaches and a pre-ulcerous stomach condition. A spontaneous healing occurred when I gave up on prescription drugs and called out in desperation for help from some invisible listening force. I began having ecstatic sensations and liberating transformations that were without precedence in my life, but wholly welcome. I had powerful dreams and visions, like those I described in Shakti Woman, that led me to the teachings of yoga and shamanism for understanding. My very first "out of body" experience paved the way for all the others by providing a significant female context... [Full Article]
I am the youngest daughter of a traditional Christian, large, fertile family. All of my siblings, both younger and older, grew up, found partners and had children. They have all remained faithful to the Christian religion we were all raised in. But not me; I have been Pagan for 26 of my 39 years. I was adamant I would never marry or have children. I had other plans for how I was going to leave my mark the world. I was going to work as a healing health care professional, caring for others and incorporating my belief system by providing holistic care to those with end of life issues. I was going to live a life of service, excitement and travel. For the first eight years after graduating from college I lived the life I had planned, traveling around the country working as a contract medical professional. I visited the wide-open plains in the Midwest, the Pacific Coast and the Great Northwest. Yes, life was just as I had envisioned it, rich and carefree. But that was before I fell in love. At that point having a child became an obsession. I wanted to create life... [Full Article]
Sacrifice as the Restoration of Balance
by Lili Fugit
The concept of sacrifice is universal, dating back through all of human history, crossing all ethnic and religious boundaries. Some of the first written stories deal with the Sumerian Goddess Inanna making a series of sacrifices, including the sacrifice of herself and then that of her faithless lover Dumuzi, in order to attain the wisdom of the Underworld.
In a general [modern] Pagan context, sacrifice is a valuable tool in making historical and personal connections to rituals and ceremonies of civilizations long gone. Specifically to those who practice Witchcraft and varying forms of folk magick, sacrifice is a means of keeping a balance within the universe. It is nothing if not a great equalizer. It is more than mere quid pro quo, though the argument could be made that there is nothing mere about exchanging one thing for another, particularly on the spiritual plane. Sacrifice is very much about aligning oneself with whatever one wishes to express or attain. In doing this everything is kept level because nothing is taken away without giving back... [Full Article]
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