This photo from April 2008 shows Christy Paxson and her newborn daughter, six weeks old at the time. The subject of mother and child is an eternal one, and when I took this Continue reading
Artist’s Note: The natural flow in my Feminist practice and Spiritual belief was to become an ardent Continue reading
She had not really accepted that her body was female. Such a body had no validity, it was not the real thing. Yet here she was apparently pregnant. Her abdomen was beginning to bulge in a very unfamiliar way. She looked at it in amazement. That amazement in itself was one story, but it was one that could not be thought through right now. The story most pressing was, what was she going to do? She was young, single, a college student. Would she tell her mother? Would she marry the father?
She was of spiritual inclination … a Christian hippie variety; sufficiently hippie to allow her to fall into bed with her bloke, Continue reading
As a presenter in the Contemporary Pagan Studies Group at the recent American Academy of Religion, I was looking forward to the possibility of some meaningful intrafaith dialogue (dialogue between members of the same faith tradition) among members of my own faith community. While I had a wonderful time at the annual meeting and connected with a wide range of both radical and reformist scholars in a variety of sub-fields, I found the annual meeting to be a rather solitary affair amongst 10,000 attendees. Granted, my Continue reading
A wonderful, magical weekend. Spent with sister-scholars, friends, mentors and elders from the Women’s Spirituality Masters of Arts program in the San Francisco Bay area, a trip I have made many times, down the great fault-line running through the mountainous, volcano-strewn landscape of the West Coast, from British Columbia to California. My very own pilgrimage route to be inspired/inspirited in the close conversations and practices I experience there, a weekend spent with colleagues I love and admire, who have supported the many years of my developing voice, scholarship, and art. A community Continue reading
A Wild and Ancient Site
There are many sites across Scotland and Ireland relating to the Cailleach for there wasn’t just one Cailleach as she had many sisters. Less than one hundred miles from where I grew up is the long loch of Loch Tay in Scotland. If you were to take to the hills until you reach Glen Tay, then continue onto Tigh na Cailliche (Glen Cailleach), you will come across the little structure of Tigh Nam Bodach, the Shrine of the Cailleach. It is possibly the only surviving shrine to the Cailleach in all of Scotland.
Joan Baez said that “Action is the antidote to despair.” That may be so, but I still despair a lot. Perhaps my expectations are too high of everyone, including myself. There’s a quote that I love from Christine Karumba that says, “One woman can change anything, but many women can change everything.” These last years, this is where I have tried to put the bulk of my efforts—into collaborative work. Continue reading
“She is a symbolic personification of a cosmos that has been in place since time immemorial, certainly since before human society.” Gearoid O Crualaoich (2003)
While growing up my Samhain’s (Halloween’s) were all about Guising – diving into my grandmother’s bag of old clothes and wondrous fabrics and piecing costumes together. Guising was all about dressing up so that when the ancestors and spirits came through from the otherworld, they wouldn’t know who was who as we were all in disguise. I can remember the thrill of running from neighbours’ houses imagining the ancestors and spirits embodied in the night’s winds – swimming through treetops and swooping down to chase us while blowing up piles of fallen leaves for dramatic effect.
I realized yesterday that I have expected feminism to fix the entire world and now I am laughing at myself. My expectation likely stems from the early years of my life where I thought Christianity, or my faith in Jesus, would fix the world—or at least everything that was wrong in mine. Continue reading
Several weeks ago on the news, we saw pictures of 40,000 people starving to death in Madaya, Syria. The elderly, women and children—all horribly emaciated. Their faces haunt me, especially the children’s. I have felt unbearably burnt out these last weeks so I decided to clean out our flat instead of working as I usually do during the weekend. My husband offered to help, but I declined. The deep cleaning was something I wanted to tackle myself for my own mental health—and, he had work to do downstairs that we frankly needed the income from. Continue reading
Introduction by Trista Handren
“It is a patient pursuit to bring water from the depth of the ground; one has to deal with much mud in digging before one reaches the water of life.”
–Hazrat Inayat Khan Continue reading
Two basic economic paradigms coexist in the world today. They are logically contradictory, but also complementary. One is visible, the other invisible; one highly valued, the other undervalued. One is connected with men; the other with women. What we need to do is validate the one connected with women, causing a basic shift in the values by which we direct our lives and policies.
Midsummer brings a craziness of spirit,
a wild urging to break loose and soar.
Drones impregnate the queen
and fall to death’s door.
My longing and lustful heart
seeks this ecstatic trance
is it the Horned Sun King
drawing me to the dance?