I'm pet-sitting over the holidays, which means I am in a house with a lot more tv channels than I'm accustomed to. While flipping through the endless options this weekend I came across a program talking about the origins of varied holiday traditions that abound. While I've pondered the meaning behind some of my own automatic traditions before, this show offered history and reasoning I'd never heard before.
One of my favorite traditions is decorating an evergreen tree and making a holiday wreath for the front door. The historical interpretation I find most connection to is that of hope for spring and a new year, shown by the tree's green life surviving through winter. We also burn
Now that the amazing 2010 winter solstice, the 24-hour period with the least amount of sunlight, has passed (here at the Sea of Trees in So. Cal. we had rain and clouds and couldn't see the lunar eclipse), the Sun begins to make its triumphant return. For those of you who have already had late year holidays and festivals (Diwali, Hanukkah, Yule, and , uh, Festivus) and those about to have such festivals (Christmas, Kwanzaa), I hope you have had, or will have, the best celebration ever.
And as the Sun returns, we begin to think of a better coming year with improved (or at least not deteriorating!) finances, happiness, and health. This often means changing our lives in a minor or major
This season has holidays that involve candles and lights. The Tantric/Hindu holiday of Diwali is a multi-day holiday which includes lighting more candles each night. Hanukkah, also a multi-day holiday, also has people lighting more candles each night. On Christmas, electric lights (formerly candles) would like illuminate the tree and the home. Pagans light a Yule log. Kwanzaa uses a special candle holder for seven candles that are lit according to a specific pattern.
This is also a time of sharing gifts. Traditionally, these gifts were relatively small, although commercialization has made the giving of gifts into something huge. This is a great time to wish health, well-being, and
This may well be the strangest title for any blog post ever.
What does spiritualized sexual practices have to do with the Jewish festival of lights? And what do either have to do with magick? Follow along and I hope this will all make sense.
Most people think that Tantra is just some form of spiritualized sexuality. Actually, Tantra is one of the oldest forms of Pagan spirituality that has been continuously practiced. It has its own deities, magickal techniques, philosophy, psychology, physiology, medicine, and much more. Much of it was altered and became important sources of Hinduism and Buddhism. Most of the spiritual ideas that we think of as coming from India, including the