Excerpt from Path of She Book of Sabbats.
At the Summer Solstice, your journey of soul invites you to blossom, shining forth the true essence and beauty of your Deep Self into the sunlit world of your everyday life. Emulate Nature in this summer season of generosity and abundance by cultivating your soul-sourced authenticity and sharing your best gifts and qualities with others.
The Solstice marks the first day of Summer and a peak in the powers of light before the scales tip once more toward the dark. Nature grants us a heady display of its fully unfurled beauty and overflowing munificence. From the mighty oak tree with its vast, green canopy to the fledgling robin casting itself from the nest, what is inside, the unique, luminescent spark of Creation within each living being, seeks its destined place in the sunlit world.
Midsummer festivities are part of our ancestral heritage and are still celebrated around the world. Bonfires are lit, honoring the brilliance and fertility of the summer sun. Merriment, music, dancing and feasting abound, reminding us to take pleasure in the good things in life while the days are long and hot, and the natural realm shares its plentitude.
The life-centered ways of the Goddess and the sacred feminine are revealed in this plentitude. The Mother Earth holds us in Her loving, generous embrace, showering us with beauty and nourishment for our hungry bellies and souls.
The robin cannot help but embrace its powers of flight, navigating the air space on its outstretched wings. The oak cannot help but burst forth from the acorn, sending its brown roots earthward and its green arms skyward. We cannot help but reach for our place in the greater world, drawing on the essence and gifts of our Deep Self. We may repress and truncate this primal soul imperative, yet our innate, unquenchable desire to flourish in our own unique way remains, ready to bloom outward, in all its brilliance, into a waiting world.
At the Summer Solstice, the Divine power that waits for you is your own Goddess Self who holds your remembrance of the ways and mysteries of the sacred feminine. She resides within the core of your being, connecting you with your inherent, indisputable beauty, worthiness and sacred purpose. She will show you the parts of your beauty and purpose that are ready to blossom, and will guide your journey of soul as you cultivate this blossoming in your everyday life.
When you offer your very best to the communal table of humanity, in a spirit of grace, goodness and generosity, you are making abundance a real, substantive part of your life and the greater environment of your family, workplace and community, and encouraging others to do the same. From these small and big changes, an ethos of abundance can take root and flourish in our human society where there is enough love and nourishment to feed, mend and transform our lives and our world.
Summer Solstice excerpt from The Path of She Book of Sabbats. Available in paperback and e-book at Amazon. Click here to purchase.
Make your own transformative magic for the summer season with the Summer Journey: Thou Art Goddess. The Summer Journey guides you through seven, integrated lessons that take you into the depths of summer’s teachings about abundance, goodness, self-love and blossoming.
Your Summer Journey includes: two pdf ebooks: the Summer Journey Guidebook and Summer Journey Journal, and the Summer Journey Guided Meditation (mp3 audio).
The cost of this integrated Summer Journey package is available at the Path Store for $16.99. Click here to purchase.
Posted on:  Jun 4, 2022 @ 10:30 Posted in:  Sabbats
There’s a powerful juxtaposing of realities going on right now. One is our human world stuck in a mindset of fear and scarcity that bears the fruits of poverty, social injustice, war, mass overconsumption and climate change. The other is a life-centered ethos revealed in Nature’s emerging summertime landscape of stunning beauty and overflowing abundance.
Two realities, two ways of living and engaging the world around us, two different outcomes for our lives, human society and Earth home. At this moment, both these realities are turned on high, in our face, shaking us awake and asking us to choose.
Photo by Loudge on Unsplash
This isn’t a comfortable discussion to have. It asks you to show up to the toxic brew of sexism, homophobia, racism, violence, environmental destruction and the myriad of other ills that pervade our human psyche and collective behaviors. These terrible events and human ills aren’t isolated, disconnected aspects of our society. They’re symptoms or outcomes of a reality of fear and scarcity that rules our world, where there isn’t enough food, money, jobs, power, social status, and even love to go around. In a reality where the dominant, aggressive and greedy rise to the top of the pile, gathering life’s goodies to themselves, things are going to get nasty and ugly.
Here are three simple, potent lessons from Nature that can help you revision your life and our collective reality in alignment with the powers of life in Summer.
1. Abundance is real.
In the sun-bright days of Summer, abundance isn’t an illusion or utopian ideal. It’s real and substantive, woven of the raw elements of sun, earth, rain, soil and seed that, through the wondrous miracle of life, produce the foodstuff that feeds the hungry bellies of this world.
Nature’s abundance expresses itself in an ethos of generosity, of giving more rather than less, and taking only what is needed. Take a single cherry tree, not only does it offer up delicious fruits for humans and creatures alike year after year, but the pits of the fruit provide the seeds of future plants and harvests.
Imagine living in harmony with Nature’s ethos of generosity by giving more of yourself rather than less, and only taking what you truly need by walking lightly on this Earth.
Imagine conceiving this same abundance in our shared society, where a decent standard of living is a given, and power, worthiness, love, and other markers of personal satisfaction and social value are infinite and available for all, each in accordance with our deep, true needs.
2. Life is good.
The powers of life are at a peak it the Summer, and the good things of the living world are on full display. The sun is hot. The sky is clear blue. Wild things are plump, healthy and busy tending their young. Ripe fruits weigh down branches. Gardens are overflowing with produce.
Sunshine caresses bare skin. Luscious flowers scent warm breezes. Wild music of birdsong and buzzing insects fills the airwaves. Flowers paint the landscape in bright colors and vibrant greens. Strawberries are soft and sweet. Life is very, very good.
Imagine living and sharing this same goodness inside of you by gifting others with your best qualities and nature.
Imagine a world in which Nature’s goodness is cherished, with its gifts and wonders received with gratitude and a debt of protecting these precious resources, and where people share their own goodness and best nature with others.
3. All life is beautiful and worthy.
Wild things don’t have self-worth or identity issues. A dung beetle doesn’t stop to measure its beauty and value against a butterfly. It goes about the business of being a dung beetle, in alignment with its unique dung beetle purpose and place in the great weaving of life.
Be it a dung beetle or butterfly, dandelion or rose, robin or turkey vulture, mouse or wild cat, no one is more beautiful or worthy than another. The summertime powers of light and life call every living being to blossom, flourish, and play their essential part in the balance and well-being of the whole.
Imagine honoring and claiming your beauty, gifts and sacred purpose, knowing that you’re truly beautiful and worthy, and that your contributions to life deeply matter.
Imagine living in a world where others do the same, where there is no better or worse than, just infinite configurations of beauty and gifts, all contributing to the balance and well-being of the whole.Visioning a New World
As I share Nature’s lessons and these visions of a life-centered reality, I want to be clear that I’m neither naïve nor someone who believes that light and love can banish life’s evils. Nature isn’t always gracious and generous. Winter brings scarcity and death, and the wild world can deliver up devastation through earthquakes, hurricanes, wildfires and other natural disasters. Yet Nature always returns to abundance, goodness and life.
In the same way, our personal lives and collective humanity are plagued by the natural ravages of illness, suffering and death, as well as the countless ills and horrors of our collective reality of fear and scarcity. Yet we can choose a vision for our lives and world based on a reality that always returns to abundance, goodness and life, no matter what challenges and hardships come our way.
This isn’t an easy choice to make. It’s hard sometimes to believe in abundance, goodness and life’s beauty in the face of the pain, suffering and horrors that weigh down our personal histories and shared humanity, and the terrible, terrible things we humans continue to do to each other and our Earth home.
Believe me I know, because I’ve traveled into the depths of my own personal horrors and those of our humanity, and come out the other side. I’ve come to understand that I/we can’t undo the harm that’s been done to us, and to the people and things we hold dear. What we can do is look life in the eye, see and speak truth, and choose accordingly.
We humans are capable of immense horror and great goodness. We can build a world based on an ethos of scarcity and fear, or abundance, goodness and beauty. We get to choose, each moment and each challenge, which of these two realities will be our guiding force. Yet, in the end, only a life-centered ethos, love and the best of our nature can mend our hearts, transform our life and take on the momentous task of creating a new, better world.
Nature shows us what we’ve forgotten. It teaches us that abundance, goodness and beauty are real and ever present. It reminds us that nothing is forever; from the depth of Winter, life always returns to and unfolds into the stunning plenitude of Summer. So too we can emerge from the long winter of soul of humanity, and a collective ethos of fear and scarcity, to return to a life-centered reality that can embrace and nourish us all.
Imagine that there’s a place and purpose in this world for every person and wild being, each beautiful, worthy and precious, and that we each bring our best gifts and qualities to the communal table of humanity to solve the problems we’ve created and build a better world together.
Then shift into this living state of abundance, goodness and beauty; stretch out your hands and send this vision outward, like a prayer, into the suffering hearts of our human world.
Bring these lessons and the life-centered ethos of the Summer into your life through the Path of She Guided Journey – Summer Journey: Thou Art Goddess .
The Summer Journey: Thou Art Goddess offering is part of a Guided Journey Series through the seasons to help you seek and source the transformative, life-centered teachings of the Goddess and Nature. The Summer Journey includes: a Guidebook (pdf ebook), Journal (pdf ebook), and Guided Meditation (mp3 audio) that offer an integrated, seven lesson program with wisdom teachings, awareness practice and journaling exercises, and a guided meditation.
Learn More at: Summer Journey: Thou Art Goddess.
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I’m deep in ritual at California Witchcamp in the redwoods on the northern coast. The night is dark, cold, yet a bright hearth fire illuminates the center of our magic circle of warmth and power. A woman approaches me, takes my face between her hands and says: “Thou art Goddess.” Then she kisses me gently on my brow and moves on.
Photo Credit: Vero Photoart on Unsplash
I, in turn, take the faces of others in my palms and repeat: “Thou art Goddess,” and then kiss their brows.
Even as I write this many years later, still I feel my heart swell in response to this simple voice of recognition that applies to each and every one of us: We are Goddess. We are Divine. We are beautiful, powerful, worthy beyond our wildest imagination.
I didn’t grow up with these words. No one talked about the Goddess or Inner Divinity. The only beauty, power and worth that came my way were meted out by outer voices, according to standards I had no say in and could never measure up to.
Once I reached adulthood, I inhabited a strange, disconnected zone of business woman in my work world and sex kitten in my social life. I had two wardrobes, each with their own set of rules of conduct and outer masks. I did this unconsciously, seeking power and value from the meager, soulless options from the culture I’d been entrained to.
My stomach clenches as I write these words. Because that’s how I lived in those days, with my guts seized up and pushing down the true power and beauty inside of me.
The outer voice is all-pervading. From the moment we’re born, this voice kicks in, speaking through our family, friends, school, community, the books we read, and the media we watch, varying its message depending on the color of our skin, sexual orientation, body type, gender, gender identity, ethnic background, economic status and countless other variables. With its many tongues, this voice tells us over and over who we are, how we should live, and whether we’re worthy or not.
This outer voice works its way inside of us and rewires our self-concept and self-love. By the time we reach our adult years, we’re entangled in its trap, and the outer voice is what we hear inside our head, and use to chart our life course and determine our beauty and value.
Yet the other voice, that connects us with our Inner Goddess, is also all-pervading. We just need to know where to seek this alternative voice and then choose to listen and learn in new, empowering ways. Nature speaks in this other, alternative voice and is especially clear in Summer when the powers of light and life are at their strongest.
When I step outside my door into the forest landscape that surrounds my home, Nature grants me direct access to the ways of the Goddess. With the sun shining bright and a sweet, forest-scented breeze warming my skin, my belly relaxes as I breathe slow and deep.
Viscerally, sensually, I sense the Goddess in all things: the dance of the wind in the new-green leaves, the jewel-bright dragonfly that flits by, the hot pink foxgloves as tall as me, the whooshing shadow of a passing raven, and the secret, musky world of microbes and crawling creatures hidden from view.
Step outside your own door. Let your belly relax. Breathe deep and slow. Feel the hot sun on your skin. Savor the sweet, warm air that smells of flowers and green growth. Notice the wild things that come into view: insects, birds and other creatures, each going about the business of flourishing according to its inner essence and purpose. Sense the Goddess’s living presence in your wild kin and the truth that everything around you is equally beautiful, worthy and essential for the wellness of the whole.
Now close your eyes and turn your awareness inward. Connect with the part of you that senses and knows these truths. This is your Inner Goddess. She is your personal, alternative voice that remembers your unique beauty and purpose, and knows that you’re infinitely worthy, simply because you are you.
Your Inner Goddess is with you from the moment you’re born and through all the days of your life. She’s always just a breath away, ready to remind you of your Inner Divinity and innate worthiness whenever the outer voice becomes too loud. With Her guidance, She can help disentangle you from the ways in which you’ve internalized the outer voice, and claim the self-loving voice of your Inner Divinity and Goddess nature.
I take your face between my palms, kiss your brow and whisper in your ear, “Thou art Goddess.” Claim this truth as your own and then pass it on. We are Goddess. We are Divine. We are beautiful, powerful, worthy beyond our wildest imagination.
Claim your Inner Goddess with the Path of She’s Guided Summer Journey.
The Summer Journey: Thou Art Goddess immerses you in the mysteries and magic of your Inner Goddess and Nature, inviting you to claim and blossom into your best, most beautiful Self.
The Summer Journey includes: a Guidebook (pdf ebook), Journal (pdf ebook), and Guided Meditation (mp3 audio) that offer an integrated, seven lesson program with wisdom teachings, awareness practice and journaling exercises, and a guided meditation. The cost of the Summer Journey is $16.99.
Posted on:  May 28, 2022 @ 10:00 Posted in:  Pagan Dreamer
I wake, still immersed in that liquid, open state between dreaming and waking, while last night’s dream replays in my mind. It’s a complicated dream about white candle magic and negative energy. One image stands out and demands my attention — a black vase with a single, long stem covered with small, hot pink flowers. I don’t recognize what kind of a flower it is, but I sense that it’s dangerous and really shouldn’t be in my house.
Photo by Slawek K
I don’t know why the flower is important or how it fits with the rest of my dream, and that’s okay. My mind has learned to be quiet in the presence of mystery, knowing that if it can reign in its compulsion to order and understand things, great jewels of learning will come.
Later in the day, I set out on my afternoon walk. As I step off the trail and onto the road, a single foxglove, with its long stem of small, hot pink flowers is waiting for me. This is unquestionably the flower from my dream — a thing of both beauty and danger, with stunning bell-shaped flowers that entice humans and wild things alike, and with an extreme poison that can be transformed into the potent heart medicine, digitalis.
I stop in my tracks and smile. This is pagan dreaming at its finest and I see that the foxglove has shown up to teach me something important.
As a pagan dreamer, I call this a between-the-worlds moment where the edges have blurred between physical and dreaming realities. The foxglove has crossed over the energetic realm of the dreaming and taken form on the physical plane. How this happened doesn’t matter. It may have arrived by synchronicity or appeared out of thin air. Regardless, the mystery of dream reality is at work and has my full attention.
As a seasoned student of the mysteries, I do what I always do when a powerful teacher reaches out from the dreaming and shows up on my path: I open my journal book, take a few deep, grounding breaths, and write an open question on the top of my blank page, in this case: what is the gift of your appearance in my life? Then I empty my mind and let my foxglove teacher speak.
This is what the foxglove has to say:
“I’m a powerful, dangerous medicine that can strengthen your heart. Your dream is about the limitations of the idea so prevalent today that love and beauty heal all.
Beauty does heal. Love does heal. But only when you honor that the heart can differentiate healing from poison. There are negative forces in this world. Everything has a dual nature that can heal or harm. A strong heart has a love that recognizes shadow. This is what can heal the world.
Summer is a season of light and life, and a time to share your beauty and love with the world. Be a thing of beauty, but acknowledge shadow and toxicity. To walk the path of beauty and love, your strong heart must be big and wise enough to hold it all.
This is the gift and teaching of my presence in your dream.”
Lesson in Pagan Dreaming: Dream Etiquette
As I share this dream with you, it comes to me that the foxglove is a perfect teacher in dream etiquette.
Where I live, foxgloves grow wild. They’re tall, imposing beauties, reaching heights of over six feet. Given their potent medicinal properties, the wise don’t touch them or cut stems for flower arrangements. These are power plants that can either harm or heal, not pretty, whimsical flowers. Long associated with the faerie realm and magic, the foxglove demands respect, whether encountered in physical reality or the realm of dreaming.
Your dreams are like foxgloves: beautiful, powerful gifts from the wild, undomesticated places in your psyche and the vast mysteries of this world. Dreams aren’t meant to be trivialized and ignored. They’re not the whimsical, nonsensical creations of your sleeping mind. They’re full of powerful medicine that can mend your heart and soul, if you consciously engage them with respect.
Dreams are your teachers on your journey of healing and personal growth. When an honored teacher shows up in your dreams, dream etiquette calls you to become the respectful student: humble, empty, curious and grateful.
But you don’t have to give your power away to your dreams, nor surrender your ability to discern positive versus negative energies that may come to you in the dreamtime. Remember the foxglove’s teaching about the strong heart, and meet your dreamwork with a love that recognizes shadow and is big and wise enough to hold it all.
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When I sat down to write this article, I consulted Wikipedia’s glossary of spiritual terms and discovered God but no Goddess under “G”. Although one of my readers immediately added a definition of the Goddess, I was deeply impacted by this omission. It verified what I’ve always known: in our modern sensibilities, God is the fundamental construct for Divinity, and the Goddess doesn’t even make the list. That’s not to say that the Goddess isn’t recognized and honored by many, but collectively we don’t identify with or adhere to a feminine concept of the Divine.
You may ask yourself: why does this matter? What do we gain from a feminine concept of the Divine? I could answer these questions from an intellectual perspective, but that doesn’t sit well with me. It’s like talking about someone in the third-person when they’re standing right beside you.
Beneath our everyday existence is a vast realm of mystery that is the between-the-worlds home of those we have named God and Goddess. We humans have always known this and have given voice to our connection to these otherworld beings by conceiving and naming their qualities, powers and gifts through our mythic storytelling and spiritual and religious practices. But the Gods and Goddesses exist in their own right, independent of our human conceptions.
Let’s return to the questions of why the Goddess matters, and what we gain from a feminine conception of the Divine. But rather than me answering these questions, I will do my best to get out of the way and let the Goddess speak for Herself:
I am the shining light in your cells and the beating love in your heart. My ethos is one of creation, of life giving birth to and nurturing life. Your body and soul are woven of my sacred essence, and the material world is the outer expression of my presence.