Fundraising for Poverty
Next week I will be living on a strange diet of cheap foodstuffs as I participate in ‘Live Below the Line’. Basically I eat for $2 a day (AUD), experience a brief window into poverty and raise money via donations for those who are REALLY experiencing it. You can find out all about it here and donate towards my program here: https://www.livebelowtheline.com.au/me/peregrin
I’ve had a really great response from magical and Pagan folk so far, which makes me smile like a loony. THANKS – and please spread the word.
Repeat of Seasonal Rant
One of my old ‘Pagany’ friends posted a nice little thing on Facebook recently. It was all about the descent of Australia “into winter” and how it “is” really Samhain here (the whole of Australia) not Beltain. Listen to this wisdom:
In the Southern Hemisphere the celebration of Samhain (pronounced sow-wen) is officially on April 30. However the actual celestial moment of Samhain is on Sunday May 5 and corresponds with a balsamic moon, which is the equivalent energy. The reason these dates are different is the first is the traditional day, the day decided long ago by our ancestors and the second date is the actual time when the Earth and Sun line up to create the moment within such sundials as Stone Henge, and its different because the earth and the sun and everything else in our galaxy hasn’t moved in a consistently predictable way.
I am not going to even go into funny moons and the “equivalent” energy to ancient Celtic festivals, but as I have said before (and will keep saying), none of these concepts apply to the whole of Australia (and perhaps not anywhere in Oz). Samhain and Beltaine are Celtic in origin, and we have no prehistoric “sun-dials” like Stonehenge . The Eight Sabbat cycle does not neatly switch. Even the concept of “winter” is alien to much of this land, and most of the traditional European motifs and myths concerning winter do not relate to our cold time at all. We (antipodean Pagans) have to keep reiterating this as the awareness of the unique and wonderful songs and seasons of our land, where we actually live, is still to be heard by many folk.
Links of Interest
I was tantalized by a recent Wild Hunt post which mentioned the current research of one of my favourite academics, Ronald Hutton. His research will not be published for a few more years, but early information includes:
- It appears that more men than women were killed in several areas;
- Most victims were not burned alive, but after execution by another means, such as strangulation or beheading, to dispose of a body deemed unworthy of a Christian burial;
- Where there was strong centralized government, there were fewer executions of witches: the body counts soared wherever a heavily localized system of justice effectively put the accusers in charge of the trials. Small German states were one example of this latter situation, Scotland another.
- Areas of Celt cultural influence had far less witch trials;
- Professional inquisitors made very little money from witch trials.
Makes one think, hey? And there is a nice little interview with the good Prof over at the Cherry Hill Seminary website. 🙂
And while in a Pagan mood, coming soon is the Green Man Quarterly, a “new project based in Melbourne, Australia that aims to present an in depth exploration of Pagan, Witchcraft and Occult issues.” This is one of the most exciting developments in Australian Pagan publishing for a long time. I know that the editorial team will produce a fine magazine filled with in-depth and quality material. It already has some great contributors. You can subscribe here: http://greenmanmagazine.com/purchase.html
And speaking of Green Men, check out the latest Sulis Manoeuvre post by Rebsie Fairholm: “Shurdington Green Man” Rebsie has perhaps the finest advice on the complex figure of the Green Man ever written:
Reducing him to a “fertility” figure is also doing him a bit of a disservice, as he’s more than just the face of Beltane bonking.
Indeed. THANKS 🙂