Archive for January, 2016

Fascinating Druidcast and a Quick Reminder

Oops! I meant to post the link earlier to Episode 106 of Druidcast, which contains a fascinating interview between Philip Carr-Gomm and A.T. Mann. I had not heard of A.T. Mann before, but this interview covers so much ground, including his book, “The Sacred Language of Trees.” I loved his discussion of the acacia tree, magical tree alphabets, and “God’s wife,” but was even more impressed with the mandala-like reach and spiraling of Mann’s research and art. Here’s someone who continues to learn and grow well beyond age 70, offering insights and synchronous twining to enchant and delight anyone feeling winter blues or too much intensity.

Also a quick reminder that the end of January fast approaches: January 2016 Specials remain available through the 31st.

Tom Lescher/Kaypacha ~ Astrology for the Soul January 27, 2016

Whew! Feelin’ this one, and I know many others are, too. I’m glad I took the time to watch this Pele Report, because it really puts events from mid-December through now and into mid-February 2016 into perspective.

If you feel the urge to purge, you are not alone. If you find yourself evaluating what works and what doesn’t and suddenly feel it impossible to ignore the suppressed, repressed, and unexpressed, you are definitely not alone. Shadow Time. I’ve also heard so much from friends and clients, as well as noticing big time in my own life, that if something no longer belongs in your life, it feels like a matter of life and death to move it on out.

Kaypacha jokes about how often he uses the word “intense” in the first few minutes of this video, but it’s really no joke. These are intense times. Intensely crushing or intensely liberating: it depends on how you manage the intensity and what decisions it forces you to make. Choose well, because our choices right now are actively creating the new paradigm.

Rising to Imbolc

As Colette notes: we’re seeing “…a revival of many traditions as people seek to understand their tribal ancestry and re-establish the threads of the tapestry to an older time.” Her post gives a nice history of Imbolc, as well as gorgeous winter photos of Bealtaine Cottage.

Here in Goshen, we feel the chill and snow, too, although we probably won’t have spring until well past Ostara. We’ve got our Wheel of the Year gathering this Saturday; however, the actual crossquarter day of Imbolc in 2016 doesn’t occur until Thursday, February 4. Crossquarter days are particularly good for tuning into the energies of Mother Earth and also for working with the faeries. Imbolc marks a time of cleansing and purification through fire and light. Brigid/Bride/Brigantia — there are so many ways to spell this beloved Goddess turned Saint’s name. In any case, she provides healing, inspiration and helps all metal workers. A guardian of sacred wells and the sacred flame, she offers special protection to mothers, children and pregnant women.

A time of new beginnings and inspiration, if Imbolc and/or Brigid draw you, you’ve still got time to plan a little ceremony for yourself!

Bealtaine Cottage ~ The Oldest, Independent, Permaculture Smallholding in Ireland! Conceived, Designed, Planted and Worked by One Woman!

The morning in the garden is bitterly cold.

These are the days before Imbolc.

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We have endured the long sleep and are ready to waken to Imbolc…

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Magical days, filled to the brim with anticipation, a sense of urgency too, as the precious days of sleep and hibernation in the gardens comes to a close.

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As I walk around the gardens this morning, I become increasingly aware of short time left in which to prune and cut back, clear and prepare, the gardens for Spring and Summer.

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Ah, Summer, just the thought of Summer on this cold, white morning of late Winter, comforts the bones.

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The days of walking barefoot in the damp grass lie ahead of me.

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The promise of a warm Summer makes the cold of the day recoil.

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Imbolc heralds Spring here in the West of Ireland.

It is one of the four big Celtic celebrations in…

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Timothy Glenn on A Fireside Chat with Zany Mystic

This just in from Lance White: archive of A Fireside Chat with Zany Mystic and Timothy Glenn from this past Saturday. I did not get a chance to listen in (or even post the announcement), since Saturday was a full day here with a community gardens and edible yards meeting, food prep for a dinner potluck, a reunion concert, birthday party and dancing in that powerful Full Moon energy. Tim and Lance are both friends of mine, and they always have such fun together, covering much ground in their radio chats. You can find links and the episode summary below:

Episode Information: 

Timothy returns to share Cosmic Wisdom in our uniquely shared journey.  We go over the concept of the synthetic overlay, the Cosmic Matrix which is Inter-Galactic and 9 dimensional, while having a few laughs along the way.  Tim mentioned the work of Laura Bruno, Ann Kreilkamp, Zen Gardner and Tim’s favorite, Carla Fox…

– See more at: http://bbsradio.com/podcast/fireside-chat-january-23-2016#sthash.AK5nHMcI.dpuf

Reiki 2 and “Special Topics in Reiki” Classes Now Forming

Just a quick heads up that some local students in Elkhart County, Indiana have expressed interest in Reiki Level 2 Certification sometime between late February and early April 2016. Two guestrooms and kitchen are available for out of town students for whom a one-day trip to Goshen would make for too long a day with the full training. We’re currently exploring which dates work for most people, so please contact me with your interest and weekend availability during that time range. Goshen is about 40 minutes East of South Bend, 8 miles from the Michigan border, and 2-3 hours from Chicagoland depending on your exact location.

I will also begin teaching some “Special Topics in Reiki” classes like I used to teach in Reno/Tahoe, Sedona and Sonoma County back in 2005-2009. If you’d like a class dedicated to delving more deeply into certain topics related to Reiki, please contact me with your interests. My class on all the things you can do with the Distant Healing Symbol was always the most popular, but I’m open to other requests, including topics reserved only for other Reiki Master Teachers.

I’m headed to the Lehigh Valley in Pennsylvania again for a family visit in early March 2016. Although primarily visiting family, I’m open to the possibility of teaching another Level 1 or a Level 2 Reiki class there if enough people express interest and midweek timing and a TBD location work. It’s a long shot, but if you missed my July 2015 class in Allentown, please contact me to see if March 2016 might synchronize for your training.

Making Seed Balls and Scattering Seeds for Wildtending

Brimful of good ideas, as usual! I’m going to try some seed balls this time, since the wide variety of endangered medicinal herb seeds I winter sowed in milk jugs didn’t all grow or transplant well. The seed balls seem like a good way to get more milkweed and medicinal herbs around town. I appreciate Dana’s extra touch of magic and blessing to this process and suspect it’s the real key to success!

The Druid's Garden

Dried seed balls ready for tossing! Dried seed balls ready for tossing!

This is the last post (for a while) in my series on wildtending. In the last month, we’ve explored the philosophy of wildtending as a sacred action, explored the refugia garden principle, I shared my own refugia garden preparation and design, and finally, we are ready to start scattering the seeds!  Perhaps these seeds were gathered from the wilds, given as a gift from a friend, or perhaps, they were gathered from a refugia garden.  Wherever you get them, now is the time to begin to scatter these amazing little balls packed with life, love, and magic.

Seed balls were invented by Fukuokoa and described in the permaculture classic, One Straw Revolution.  They have a number of benefits over other methods for scattering seeds.  First, and foremost, they are easy to throw and toss into spaces you can’t reach.  A lot…

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Charter for Real Food

I just received an update from Polish Food and Farmers. ICPPC – International Coalition to Protect the Polish Countryside is led by partners Jadwiga Lopata and Julian Rose. Those who’ve followed the events in Poland already know how ICPPC fights to protect small and medium farmers from BigAg takeover. This update contains a “Charter for Real Food,” which cities, towns and/or states might want to consider as a template for their own food sovereignty movement. As always, thank you to Jadwiga and Julian for their tireless activism and commitment to real food, real farmers and by extension, real culture. Here’s their newsletter below:

“Direct From the Farmer” Gains Ground!

The new government in Poland is responding to our campaign to free-up the drastically repressive food and hygiene regulations that have dogged the Country’s small and medium sized farmers for decades. Up until now, governments have outlawed the sale of on-farm processed foods unless farmers establish their operations as a separate business and in a separate hygienically sanitised building; something that is unaffordable to the great majority of small farmers whose holdings typically range from between 3 and 10 hectares.

However, an International Coalition to Protect the Polish Countryside campaign to change this position and to free-up Poland’s 1.3 million small family farms to operate autonomously – and to direct-sell their produce locally – is gaining momentum and is not, thus far, seen as being at odds with the agenda of the new government.

ICPPC has now produced a Charter for Real Food (see below) which outlines the key factors essential to maintaining both food security and food sovereignty in Poland. The Charter has already been signed by a significant number of farmers, organizations and individuals and has been sent to parliamentarians and to the Minister of Agriculture and The Environment.

At the same time we are writing a new Act ourselves, in close consultation with other farmers. The Act will spell-out conditions for a farmer-friendly supply and demand market, critical to the survival of family farming traditions in Poland. In this, we have been fortunate to have the support of the new chairman of the Agricultural Committee (Jaroslaw Sachajko) in the Sejme (Polish parliament) who is a prominent member of the Kukis’15 movement which attracted 12% of the vote in the recent (October 2015) elections. Working closely with Sachajko has enabled us to form the wording of the new Act into the necessary legal terminology to be presented to parliament.

It is noteworthy that the government is open for such a ‘citizen led’ initiative. However, hammering out the exact wording among a group farmers and supportive consumers is a tough undertaking; but one which Jadwiga has taken-on with determination.

For those who have followed the story:
The European Commission stated outright, back in 2001, that it is the EU’s intention to eradicate the peasant farming tradition in Poland – and no doubt anywhere else where it survives – and to restructure its agriculture by merging small farms into large scale enterprises able to ‘be competitive in the world market’. We all know what that means: large scale agrochemical monoculture exporting commodities onto the highly volatile global market place.

Whatever emerges in 2016, we remain committed to helping ‘hold the Polish line’ made up as it is of small and medium sized independent family farms forming both the bedrock and backbone of the nation’s essential food security and sovereignty. Let’s hope that the fruits of this ongoing struggle ultimately be felt far beyond Poland’s borders.

You can donate to ICPPC’s activities here
http://icppc.pl/index.php/en/support-us.html

Many thanks!

Jadwiga Lopata and Julian Rose
==========================
ICPPC – International Coalition to Protect the Polish Countryside,
34-146 Stryszow 156, Poland tel./fax +48 33 8797114 biuro@icppc.pl
www.icppc.pl www.gmo.icppc.pl www.eko-cel.pl
Julian’s website ABOUT BOOK: www.julianrose.info

Charter for Real Food

In respect for the fine tradition of peasant and family farming that uniquely maintains the rich and productive biodiversity of the Polish Countryside and some of the finest farm foods available in Europe, we (the below) call upon the government to put into immediate affect the points stated in this ‘Charter for Real Food’

* That special dispensation is given to small and medium sized independent family farms to process and sell their home raised and home processed farmhouse foods without being required to comply with inappropriate and unnecessary hygiene and sanitary conditions designed for large commercial businesses.

* That recognition and support is given to the vital role that small and medium sized independent family farms play in protecting and maintaining the vital food sovereignty and food security of the nation’s primary food supply.

* That equally, recognition and support is given to the key role that small and medium-sized family farms play in protecting the essential biodiversity of nature that characterises the special quality of the Polish Countryside.

* That consumers, requiring good quality natural foods in order to maintain a robust and long lasting natural health, are given ample opportunity to choose to buy such foods from within their local communities.

* That, following on from this, small shops, schools, local restaurants and markets are not restricted or prohibited from purchasing a fully diverse range of local foods from (good) local farmers.

* That further to this, consumers are encouraged to understand the superior health value of local fresh and flavourful foods that maintain their full complement of natural vitamins and nutrients.

* That a sincere effort is made to catalyse a renaissance of ‘real food from real farmers’, the benefits of which will extend to a rejuvenation of local rural economies and a flowering of the arts and culture of the Polish Countryside.

* That the government, gives ample opportunity to young and aspiring farmers, to rent productive land currently held by government agencies, for the purpose of maintaining a career in farming both now and in perpetuity for their children.