Monthly Archives: April 2015

Rioting, Oppression, and Compassion


Image credit: T. Thorn Coyle

What would you do if a Pagan was being murdered by the police once a month? What about once a week? What about more frequently than that? What if a bunch of Pagans in some cities started protesting, but nobody else cared? What if a riot broke out? Would you stand there blaming those Pagans for being too violent?

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A Pagan Community Statement on the Environment


Fortuitously, my week to post coincided with the Earth Day 2015 release of A Pagan Community Statement on the Environment.  Usually, we post on Mondays, but this timing was too good to pass up.  For the last few months, myself and a few dozen others have been working together on this statement, and I’m both pleased with the outcome and excited to share it with you all.

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Margot Adler Day & Music for Activism

Margot Adler, author and NPR correspondent

Today is Margot Adler Day. It is her birthday (1946). She passed from this realm in 2014. The Firefly House in Washington, DC started this celebration of her life, this remembrance, as a means to not only remember Margot the person, but to remember all the good works that she helped bring about into this world. Not just her contributions to the written lexicon that is in the “you must read” section of Pagan libraries, but her contributions to activism – Pagan, environmental, political. Continue reading

Peace & Planet III

Twice now I’ve written about the Peace & Planet event happening in New York City April 24-26. And some really useful comments have come my way as to why nuclear weapons are no longer at the tip of everyone’s tongue like they were when I was coming of age in Suburban Boston during the 80s. The discussion took place mainly on Facebook (of course) where a few people commented on how nuclear weapons haven’t been much of a topic of conversation since the new century began because, well, they’re blase. ” It’s an old topic” Crystal said. And she’s right. It’s a topic going back to before WWII.

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I Understand

Raw_vegan_lunchA friend’s dad has been going through some serious health issues that have impacted his quality of life. Though it’s hard to point to a cause in any particular case, his symptoms are all strongly associated with animal foods. She’s been frustrated and scared because even though all the evidence is there, he won’t make even minimal changes to the way he eats. Not even to save his own life.

When confronted with death, a lot of us make big life changes to avoid it. We stop smoking after a cancer diagnosis, start exercising for heart disease, and so on. But not all of us do that. When my friend’s dad’s concession to his health was to only eat beef three times a week (as a treat) and eat other types of meat for the rest of his meals, I kind of got it. I don’t know him, but I can see someone’s thought process going like this:

Option A: Enjoy every moment of my life, as much as I am able, and eventually die. Meanwhile I’ll probably increasingly suffer from this disease.

Option B: Radically change my life. I won’t enjoy any meal again because healthy food is gross. I will never feel full. My disease might get a little better but I’ll be suffering constantly in a different way. It might take longer but I’ll still die.
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My Activist Love/Hate Relationship with Facebook

I can’t remember why I joined Facebook or who influenced me to give it a try but it happened in December, 2008. That was before my current activist days began so it must have been a way of staying in touch with current friends and possibly finding old ones. Since that time, my use of Facebook has become much more involved, intense, time consuming and at times, overwhelming and aggravating.

As an activist interested in a number of issues that I consider urgent, I rely on Facebook to keep me informed of updates and developments, possible new alliances, ideas that others can share about creative actions and events as well as a platform from which to offer events of my own creation. All of this is accomplished through the flow of communication amongst my Facebook friends, some of whom I only know through this medium and are fundamental to the work I choose to do. I am grateful for the immediate access to information and the exchange of ideas that is crucial to intelligent decision making. That is a summary of the things I value about Facebook. The following list of things that sometimes make me wish I could wean away from the forum will likely be longer.

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