Friday, March 20, 2015

Buzz Coil: March 2015

There has been a hiatus in Buzz Coil due to what is probably carpal tunnel syndrome. I'm hoping to start the Buzz Coils again regularly. I will be doing links only to the blogs' homepages (not the individual posts) because I can't do the links well using voice recognition software. Thank you for your understanding.

A Crone Speaks Out:  Rev. Cathryn Plantine's February 6 post, "The Future of Paganism, to Build or Not to Build," gives background on the Maetreum of Cybele in relation to "an online debate raging about Pagan infrastructure in multiple blogs" and attempts to answer the question, "So what is the future of Paganism?"

Annelinde's World: Annelinde's Metzner's March 13 post, "Dancing Swords, " is a poem with pic about belly dancing and Goddess.

ASWM Blog: On March 13 the blog of the Association for Women and Mythology announced "We’Moon to Receive 2015 Brigit Award for Excellence in the Arts," and in conjunction with its 2015 symposium  in in Portland, Oregon, a program celebrating the work of the late Patricia Monaghan, "Celebrating 'Mary: A Life in Verse' by Patricia Monaghan."   A March 9 post announces, "Symposium Features Saga Award Honoree Z Budapest," and gives details about this award.

 Broomstick Chronicles: Aline O'Brien (aka Macha NightMare)  gives details of two conferences: her March 6 post tells about the events relevant to Paganism of the meeting American Academy of Religion; per February 20 post tells about "Hanging with My Peeps at PCon."

Contemplation/Blog: Yeshe Rabbit's March 2 post looks at women's history month in two parts: "Women's History Month Ritual: Can you commit to women?" and "Women's History Month Daily Practice."

 Goddess in a Teapot:  In a March  8 post, "Words Which I Command Are Immortal," Carolyn Lee Boyd begins with a quote from Sappho and goes on to discuss the power of words as related especially to the maiden/mother/crone description of the triple Goddess. She goes on  to propose words to describe "women's spiritual power" and also an alternate for "priestess."

Hearth Moon Rising's blog: The March 6 post on this blog, "The Myriads of Wenut" is about an Egyptian hare Goddess.

HecateDemeter:  In a March 7 post,   "Conference Self Care," blogger Hecate writes about time spent  with various Pagans at a recent conference. With pic of " Hail Columbia "candle .

Mythology Matters in a March 13 post, “Mythic Travel: Malta’s Neolithic Sacred Temples," Arthur George writes about Malta’s Neolithic ruins. 

My Village Witch: Byron Ballard’s March 19 post, “Alewives,” tells about a meeting with a “closed group of witches,” in Appalachia. 

The Motherhouse of the Goddess: Kimberly’s March 18 post tells about "Creating an Altar to Connect with the Hindu Goddess Lakshmi {Journal Prompts & Mantras}.” In her March 16 post she writes about “The Goddess Lilith — Reclaiming Women’s Power and Survival.”

The Wild Hunt: In her March 11 post, Heather Greene discusses “Women, Witchcraft, and the Struggle Against Abuse.” In a March 12 post, Cara Shultz delves into “Life Cycles: What Modern Society Can Learn from Paganism.” 

Veleda: Max Dashu’s February 2 post,The Pontifical Council for Culture has an agenda on women: the same tired old cage,” compares views of Vatican with the  history of various cultures. With pics. 

WoodsPriestess:  In a March 18 post, blogger talkbirth shares information about her “Dissertation Research: PriestessPath” for Ocean Seminary College.

Godddess/Spiritual Feminist Blogs

Because of the large number and variety of bloggers and posts on these blogs, we are now suggesting that you visit them and select the posts that interest you most.

Return to Mago: A Goddess-centered blog whose administrator/owner is Helen Hye-Sook Hwang.
Feminism and Religion: Many bloggers from many different religions and paths.
Pagan Square: This blog of many mostly-Pagan paths is sponsored by BBI Media and includes SageWoman blog posts.


Thursday, March 12, 2015

Goddess Pages Winter 2014/Spring 2015

I am a little late and will be a little short in telling you about this issue of Goddess Pages due to my own ongoing battle with carpal tunnel syndrome. So please excuse the lack of lots of links. I'm writing this with  the help of speech recognition software. Any mistakes are due to the misunderstandings by the software ;-)

This issue opens with art of Morrigan by Laura Bell, who also wrote an article on this Goddess. The introduction to this issue by Geraldine Charles appears under the title "She Changes Everything She Touches."

Articles are by Susun Weed, Morgan Daimler, Georgina Sirrett-Armstrong-Smith, Hannah Spencer, and Sue Oakley.

Fiction is by Carolyn Lee Boyd. Poems are by Annelinde Metzner and Susa Silvermarie

There are six reviews, including those of Goddess by Laura Powell, Lupa and Lamb by Susan Hawthorne (which we also reviewed here), and The Morrigan: Meeting the Great Queen by Morgan Daimler.

Hope you'll go over to the Goddess Pages website to find out more.


Friday, February 06, 2015

20th Anniversary Glastonbury Goddess Conference Announced

The 20th Anniversary Glastonbury Goddess Conference will be held Tuesday 28th July - Sunday through 2nd August 2015 in Glastonbury (aka Avalon), England, with Fringe events from Sunday July 26th - Monday August 3rd. The Conference will celebrate Anu, An Cailleach, Stella Nolava, Queen of Heaven & Earth, Cosmic Star Mother, and  Sharing Goddess Spiritual Practices.

 Announced presenters included:
JONES, KATINKA SOETENS, KIRSTEN BRUNSGAARD, SALLY PULLINGER & TERENCE MEADEN. PLUS many more inspiring Artists, Musicians, Performers, Priestesses, Melissas & lots more wonderful women and men.

Announced Artwork Exhibitions include:
DREAMS AND VISIONS with TIANA PITMAN with AMBER SKYES, FOOSIYA MILLER, JILL SMITH & more artists in the Glastonbury Assembly Rooms, WENDY ANDREW in the
Miracles Room.

For more information, and to make reservations, go to

Monday, December 29, 2014

Review: Second Book in Trilogy by Martha Shelley

The Stars in Their Courses, a novel, by Martha Shelley (Ebisu Publications 2014), trade paperback, 324 pages.

This is the second novel in a trilogy by spiritual feminist Martha Shelley. It continues the story begun in the first of the three novels, The Throne in the Heart of the Sea, and like that novel is set in the ninth century BCE in the area often known as the Levant, where most of the Bible takes place. Like the first novel, it’s written in today’s sometimes colloquial American English while keeping some of the terms used in the Ancient Near East (ANE). Also like the first novel of the trilogy, it presents alternative views of biblical characters such as Jezebel and Elijah and creates additional characters such as Tamar and her mutarajjul, Bez. (As Shelley explains in the book’s glossary, a mutarajjul refers to a “woman dressed in male clothing, usually employed as a soldier or harem guard.”)

 As the second novel opens, Tamar has arrived in Egypt, with her guard Bez, to continue her study of medicine with the blessings of her former lover, Jezebel, who has married Ahab and become Queen of Israel. Jezebel feels she must produce an heir for Ahab in order to keep her status. Jezebel achieves motherhood, yet enjoys flirting with the women of Ahab’s harem. Elijah has become, among other things, a murderer. Both Tamar and Bez find new women to love in Egypt, and Bez begins to develop her artistic talent. Shelley weaves into this story the worship of various ANE goddesses including Asherah, Neith, Anat, and the pre-Islamic Arabic goddesses Allat, Al-Uzza, and Manat.

 Shelley’s excellent descriptions of details bring this time period and its people to life; for example, her description of the flooding of the “Great River,” including its devastation and harm to humans, and Tamar’s learning, in the clinic where she is receiving training, how to treat accompanying medical conditions. This includes Tamar’s amputation of a leg.

 In addition to the glossary, the back matter includes the art and information about the Seal of Jezebel that Max Dashu created from a small photo that Shelley took of the original in Israel. The front matter includes the seal, as well as maps of “the ancient world,” including Jerusalem and the Great River, and the Levant including Israel. In addition, a map of Assyria is placed at the beginning of chapter 29.

 Shelley’s background includes Goddess religion and Jewish feminism. She also is a poet and one of the founders of the Gay Liberation Front in New York City.

In a novel series such as this the reader may wonder if it’s necessary to read the whole series, or the previous book, to understand each book. In my opinion Shelley has incorporated enough material in the second book so that you don’t have to read the first book to understand the second. (But of course you may want to for enjoyment.) In addition, because of the subtlety with which Shelley includes the material from the first book, this material will not interfere with the enjoyment of the second book for people who have already read the first one.

 Yes, the second book in this trilogy is as good as the first. I look forward to the publication of the third.

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Tuesday, December 02, 2014

Just Published: Merlin Stone Remembered

Last April I was asked to write what is known in the book trade as a “blurb,” or “endorsement” of a work-in-progress planned to be published as a remembrance of Merlin Stone and centered around the remembrances of Merlin’s life partner of 34 years, Lenny Schneir. A few months later the book was acquired by Llewellyn Worldwide. It has now been published with the authors listed as David B. Axelrod, Carol F. Thomas, and Lenny Schneir. A quote from my blurb is included among the many endorsements printed in the beginning and on the back cover of this book. As is common when a publisher has received many endorsements, they used only one line from most blurbs, including mine. I’d like to share with you here my entire blurb for the book, Merlin Stone Remembered, and also give you a little more of an idea of what the book contains.

“This book is a lovely and loving tribute to the late Merlin Stone, a foremother of Goddess feminism, author, sculptor, and professor of art history. Remembering Merlin Stone includes a beautiful and revealing memoir by her life partner, poet and poker player Lenny Shneir, along with his poetry, previously unpublished material by Stone, pictures, and other treasures by a number of contributors. What a gift to those of us familiar with Stone’s work, as well as those who want to know more about her life, both personal and professional.”
--Judith Laura, author of Goddess Spirituality for the 21st Century: From Kabbalah to Quantum Physics
The book also includes a preface, essay, and epilogue by Carol Thomas; an editor’s note, poem, and several essays by David Axelrod; a long introduction by Gloria Orenstein, placing Stone’s work in the context of work that came before and was contemporaneous with hers; excerpts from Stone’s writing--published and unpublished--including chapter 10 of When God was a Woman, “Unraveling the Myth of Adam and Eve”; letters from admirers (mostly unattributed) including one (attributed) from Robert Kennedy in a section on Stone’s sculpture; and an essay by Cynthia Stone Davis. The book also has many illustrations.

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Saturday, November 15, 2014

Full review to come

I have started reading Martha Shelley's latest novel, The Stars in their Course. I hope to have a full review in a month or so after I have recovered from carpal tunnel syndrome. But I wanted to let you know that if what I've read so far is any indication it's at least as good as the previous novel in this trilogy, Throne in the Heart of the Sea, which I reviewed here.

Tuesday, November 04, 2014

Correction on ASWM Symposium Link

The previous announcement for the 2015 Symposium for the Association for the Study of Women and Mythology contained a broken link due to ASWM's redoing its site. This link has now been corrected on the original post of Sept. 1 and is also given in the paragraph below.  Sid Reger of ASWM asks that you please share this corrected announcement:
“Tales and Totems:  Myth and Lineage in Goddess Studies,” April 11, 2015 in Portland OR.  Proposals accepted until Nov. 15, 2015.  Keynote speaker:  Susan Griffin
Call for Proposals and registration and program information at

Thursday, October 30, 2014

No Buzz Coil This Month...

...due to my having carpel tunnel syndrome. Best wishes for a Splendid and Blessed Samhain/Hallows.

Sunday, October 05, 2014

Global Goddess Oracle: Fall Equinox Issue

The Fall Equinox issue of the Global Goddess Oracle is now online. This issue's introductory article by Dawn tells about the arrival of autumn in Florida and has a photo of a rainbow in a yellow sky.

Feature articles include: "Hear Me Roar," by Katy Ravensong,  about her Pagan approach to religion; "Hestia: A Goddess for the Equinox," Goddess background and a ritual by Dawn "Belladona Thomas; "Just Be," advice for this time of year along with a poem, by Heather Geileis Kohser; "Persephone: The Mysteries of the Deep Earth," both the original myth and a retelling by Shauna Aura Knight.

Regular features include: "Ask Your Mama," by Mama Donna Henes; "Moon Schedule" (Fall Equinox to Samhain) and "Solitary Autumn Equinox Ritual," both by Dawn “Belladonna” Thomas; two installments of "Pagan Every Day," one about Miss Piggy and the other about Tara, by Barbara Ardinger.

Poems include: "Harvest Seed – Manifestation" by Sondra Slade.

Dawn Thomas reviews two books: Dark Moon, a romance novel involving a Witch, by Leisl Leighton, and  Crafting & Use of Magickal Scents by Carl F. Neal.

On the Oracle's homepage  Bendis announces that submissions are being accepted and gives an explanation of the Oracle's submission policy.


Monday, September 29, 2014

Buzz Coil: September 2014

A look at some posts of interest from our blogroll and sometimes beyond:

My Village Witch: Byron Ballard of Asheville NC's Mother Grove Goddess Temple posted two parts (at this writing) of a series on what she terms "Tower Time." Her Sept. 2 post, "Tower Time Document One– A Knowing, Cassandra-like" defines and describes what she means by the term. Near the beginning of this post she writes:
"This early knowing pointed obliquely to the old dream of every old feminist—the Collapse of the Patriarchy ™. Since our fiercer days in the long-ago 1970s, many of us have modified our speech—often because people refuse to understand that Patriarchy ™ is a system or a set of systems and is not merely angry women being mad at and blaming men."
Later in the post she writes:
"Religion as empire, state as empire, education as empire, healing as empire—all are recalibrating in their individual descents. Each of us is in our personal place as the Tower erupts and crumbles. Some of us stand on the top, blissfully unaware that anything long-term is occurring below our feet. Some are trapped amongst the turrets, calculating a way off. Some have flown away and are gone to wherever and whatever comes after this life, after Matter has become Spirit."
Her Sept. 6 post, "Tower Time, Document Two: Going to Ground" begins by describing a ritual in "a small Temple" in response to the Gulf of Mexico oil disaster. She goes on to write:
"Sometimes when we pray, we forget that prayer is not simply sending our best intention into the Universe. For those of us who see the Ancestral Goddesses as non-corporeal beings who have some authority and ability in the world of the world, the prayers and the singing honor Beloved Ones who are near us, but are not us. The invocations in which we implore them to fix our lives or clean up our messes or show us a way through are requests and bargainings. We understand that we have a part in this relationship but we do not have control."
She then goes on to advise how to protect and renew yourself during the Tower Time.

A Crone Speaks Out:  Rev. Cathryn Platine of the Maetreum of Cybele posted several strong-worded posts this month, including "Open Letter to the Greater Pagan Communities on Transphobia," on Sept. 3;  "Tired of Waiting for that Next Witch Hunt," on Sept 4, in which she discusses current Pagan issues, with  the backdrop of her ancestors, women tried for witchcraft in Salem MA; and a series "Ageism and Pagan Elder Abuse Part 1," on Sept 17 and Part 2 on on Sept. 18.

Hearth Moon Rising's blog: In her Sept. 12 post, "Like a Vague Malodorous Stain Seeping into the Theological Discourse," Hearth Moon Rising discusses
 " the parallels between fascism and political movements that view themselves as rooted in postmodern philosophy, especially Postmodern Feminism and Queer Theory."
Among her points:
"The postmodern cult finally got a toehold in Paganism several years ago with the demand that Dianic priestesses admit trans women into our rituals on the grounds that biological sex has been theorized out of existence, or at least relevance, in favor of self-identified gender....Gender itself is not defined because nothing in postmodern politics is defined. Definitions are passe, especially when they create boundaries you want to crash. Demands to admit males into female spiritual space have been present since the seventies, but now they are based on the argument that the old women, 'on the wrong side of history,' need to step aside for the new generation with the new ideas, an argument that drips with ageism."
In her Sept. 5 post, Hearth Moon Rising shares her "Reflections on Recent Events in the Dianic Community."

Radical Goddess Thealogy: In her Sept. 12 post, "Pouring Gas on ISIS," blogger Athana addresses President Obama, writing, in part:
"Listen to the goddess Isis.  It’s no accident that she gave her name to a group as similar to her as honey is to bug-infested rump roast.
She’s trying to get your attention.  We need to turn ISIS back into Isis, a peaceful way of life centered around a Goddess who used to rule over large parts of the same land skanky ISIS is now riding over roughshod." 

Broomstick Chronicles: Macha NightMare (Aline O'Brien)'s Sept. 9 post asks "When Is Consensus Process Not Consensual?"  and answers the question by sharing some of her experiences with the process, her opinion on what factors can make the consensus process difficult, and what quality is necessary to make it successful.

Living a Spiral Path: In a Sept. 20 post, "What's In A Name?" blogger Stormy Seaside contemplates the many names and representations of the Mother Goddess, beginning:
 "I believe there is one Mother God, and she has thousands and thousands of names upon which her children might call...." With pics.
Annelinde's World: Annelinde Metzner's Sept. 19 post of her poem, "What She Is,"" includes, at the end of the post, an audio of the poem (which I can't seem to get to work today, but maybe it's my computer...). 

Musings of a Quaker Witch: In her Sept. 10 post, "Thanking the Goddess for Tea," Stasa Morgan-Appel asks if the title of this post is appropriate for her, and discusses the difference between believing in the Goddess and experiencing her.

The Motherhouse of the Goddess: In her Sept. 19 post, Tracey Paradiso writes about "Exploring “Alternative” Spirituality: Telling you what I wish someone had told me," including combining various forms of spirituality and religion. Kimberly Moore's Sept. 2 post responds to the question,  "What Is Women's Ritual and Why Do We Need It?" Answering the question, "What about men?" Kimberly writes:
"I have to be true to the facet of service to which I am called. I have to honor the joy in my soul in facilitating Goddess connection with and for women. It does not mean that I have no consideration of men. It just means that my primary focus is on the counter-swing to patriarchy and working with women who are seeking the connection to Goddess."
She then explores what "women's ritual" is and how it differs from mixed-gender rituals.

WoodsPriestess: In her Sept. 15 post, "Dance in a Circle of Women," blogger talkbirth writes of being pregnant and preparing for this year's Gaea Goddess Gathering. She shares her memories and notes from the 2013 Gathering, including songs and insights, both positive and negative. With lots of pics. 

HecateDemeter: In her Sept. 5 post, "And Round and Round," blogger Hecate shares her thoughts about "the middle of the end of summer."

GlenYs's Blog:  In her Sept. 11 post, "Eostar - Persephone Returns," Glenys Livingstone of MoonCourt in Australia, shares her thoughts about spring's return to the Southern Hemisphere.

The Wild Hunt: Heather Greene's Sept 7 post, "World Goddess Day," gives background and quotes from participants in the first celebration of this holiday, which we posted about previously.

Love of the Goddess: Blogger Tara's Sept. 10  post is about "Pachamama, Inca Goddess of the Earth" and tells about her sacred month, and her many associations, titles and festivities.

Casa della Dea: A Sept. 9 post in Italian by Eilantha Redpring, "Rituali sulle rive del Belice" quotes a news article about the initiation of priestesses on the bank of the Belice river, and then goes on the share an interview with the priestess, Alessandra Di Gesù . With pics.   

Large Group Goddess/Spiritual Feminist Blogs

Because of the large number and variety of bloggers and posts on these blogs, we are now suggesting that you visit them and select the posts that interest you most.

Feminism and Religion: Many bloggers from many different religions and paths.
Pagan Square: This blog of many mostly-Pagan paths is sponsored by BBI Media and includes SageWoman blog posts.

Return to Mago: A Goddess-centered blog whose administrator/owner is Helen Hye-Sook Hwang.