Wednesday, March 30, 2011


Image courtesy of Angela Jayne Barnett

With a shiver she reads what she has written
The page of scribbled words reflect the stranger within
Lies upon lies told only to herself

The empty vessel
painful like a parched throat
gasping for truth

Brigid's flame surrounds
all consuming
burning the residue

Her heart
now empty; like the rest of her

To move forward and fill the chalice
The cold iron water of the Red Spring
Splashing cool, bringing moisture to the arid cells
of Her body

What is more painful?
The ache of emptiness
Or the fear of filling the cup?

Monday, March 14, 2011

Confessions of a Liar

I have a confession to make. I am a good liar. I mean a really good one. I don't know where it all started. Perhaps it was early in life when I wanted to avoid getting in trouble with my mother. Or it could have been in high school gym class when I wanted to get out of running and used my period as an excuse. (I still can't believe that one worked!) Maybe it is just ingrained in my DNA. I don't know, but as a child I saw that it work for me and kept on doing it.

Over the years I have lied to get out of trouble. I have lied to keep the peace. I have lied for self preservation. I have lied to save someones feelings. I have lied to gain something. I have lied to not loose something. I have lied to family, friends, authorities, bosses, children, you name it. I have lied.

Now I am really good at it.

The thing is for a long time I didn't even feel bad about it. I wasn't lying about big things. It's not like I ever worked for the mob or anything. I wasn't stealing or cheating anyone, at least that is what I told myself. I just told little white lies to get out of uncomfortable situations or *ahem* occasionally make myself look better.

Over the last few years I have really looked at this lying thing. I don't like it. I really don't like that there is my energy out in the world with lying attached to it. So, a few years ago, I stopped. Seriously, I stopped. It seemed almost too easy....

And now I realize it was....At the same time that I committed to stop lying I also stopped working in a corporate environment. It was almost too easy to lie to my boss and co-workers. It was too easy to B.S. my way through a project by telling little white lies. And when I stopped doing that work it was easier to stop lying.

Now I find myself in an office environment again. It is only part time and not for a big corporation, but I have caught myself telling little white lies already. It's almost like I can't control myself. And it's typically over something ridiculous like: "Hey did you make that phone call?", and my answer, "Oh yeah, I left a message." Even though I didn't make the phone call and totally forgot I needed to make the phone call at all. Is this some crazy survival instinct?

It all came home for me today. I was listening to a woman on the radio who said that she only has two rules, don't lie and don't cheat. I thought to myself, those are two excellent rules, and yet not lying seems to be so hard, as least in some situations.

I think the challenge for me now is to look at my lying at the office. Why do I do it? How can I get it under control? And why is it that I have such a hard time being completely honest there, but not in other places?

Just some random thoughts for off to make that phone call.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

The Rite of Lilith and Transgendered Pagans

I know that I am probably a little late with this, but I felt compelled to put my two cents in on this issue. The internets have been a buzz with an event that took place at Pantheacon with the Rite of Lilith ritual and how transwomen were not allowed to participate in the event.

Although I want to put my two cents in, I have to admit that I'm not really sure what my two cents are....

Unlike many of the people who have commented on this Pantheacon discrimination issue, I actually attended the ritual. As we all stood in the hallway before the Rite began a woman left saying that she would not participate because the ritual leaders would not allow transwomen to participate. I don't know if this woman was trans or not, in fact it doesn't matter. My point is, I had this information ahead of time, but I chose to stay. Part of me was upset about people being left out, but there was another part of me that understood the decision.

There is a part of me that feels there is a place for for gender specific rituals. There are times when it makes sense. This shouldn't be about exclusion of anyone, but the work with a specific type of energy.

This specific issue was brought to everyone's attention due to a miscommunication. I don't know if this miscommunication was due to CAYA Coven or the Pantheacon people, but it wasn't the only miscommunication of the weekend.

I was involved with a Pantheacon presentation with the Reclaiming Tradition. Our ritual was marked at 'restricted' in the program, but it wasn't a restricted ritual. And in the lead up to Pcon it was never marked as restricted in our paperwork. I know our presentation was not the only one to be improperly labeled. (It feels odd to use the world labeled in this post and yet, there it is.)

If the Rite of Lilith had been properly marked as a 'restricted' ritual, would this conversation even be happening? I don't think it would. But the reason this has come into the forefront is really no longer important. Here is why I think this whole thing is actually good for the Pagan community...

In the Reclaiming community we spend a lot of time talking about gender, sexuality, and identity. We work very hard to make sure that everyone, no matter how they might self identify, feels welcome and included. This isn't always easy work, but it is so important.

The conversation about trans-inclusivity has been happening in Reclaiming, but has it been happening with other groups? These are important conversations for us, as Pagans, to be having and I am glad that they are happening now, even if the catalyst for it has been uncomfortable.

I do believe that there should be space for women to do magickal work with only women and men to do magickal work with only men. I don't have the answers as to how this fits into the bigger picture and how this works with trans-gendered folks in our communities, but I am glad it is being talking about openly.

This is a big topic, it is hard to have a clear yes or no, black or white answer. In fact I don't think there is one. In fact there are many articles up on Patheos about duality without gender and the Sacred Third. This is exciting for me because it goes beyond this one event into something bigger. Now that the conversation has started it needs to keep on rolling. What we must do is keep open, clear, and honest communication.