(Pagan) News of Note

Jason Pitzl-Waters —  July 3, 2009 — 4 Comments

My semi-regular round-up of articles, essays, and opinions of note for discerning Pagans and Heathens.

Move over Long Man of Wilmington and Cerne Abbas Giant, a mining company is carving a 400-yard goddess figure into the Northumberland landscape.

“Dubbed the “Goddess of the North”, Northumberlandia will be made from two million tonnes of earth dug out from an open cast mine in Cramlington, and tower 112ft into the northern sky. The Goddess, designed by artist Charles Jencks, will recline over the Shotton open-cast mine and form the centre piece of a new public park at the site.”

One wonders if this new addition to Britain’s landscape will, in a few hundred years, be considered an “ancient” pre-Christian survival by the locals. It will also be interesting to see if the site will become a pilgrimage place for modern Pagans and Goddess-worshippers.

The Oxford University Press blog points us to a “Meet the Author” interview with Owen Davies.

Davies is the author of  “Grimoires: A History of Magic Books”, a truly interesting work that you can expect to see a full review of at this blog sometime soon.

The Coalition of Visionary Resources (COVR) has given awards to three Llewellyn Worldwide titles: “Faith and Magick in the Armed Forces”, by Stefani E. Barner (Best New Wiccan/Pagan Title), “Magic, Power, Language, Symbol”, by Patrick Dunn (Best New Magic Title) and “The Enchanted Oracle”, by Jessica Galbreth and Barbara Moore (Best New Divination Title).

“COVR is an organization formed by a unique group of businesses that deal in “Visionary Resources,” and who work with and support each other as independent retailers, manufacturers, distributors, wholesalers, and publishers of visionary books, music, and merchandise. For the twelfth consecutive year, COVR’s Visionary Awards were presented at the International New Age Trade Show (INATS) banquet, this year held on June 27th, 2009 in Denver, Colorado. The Visionary Awards are judged by retailers and seasoned professionals, who evaluate each title based upon content, presentation, and their own knowledge of the industry.”

Congratulations to Llewellyn and the assorted authors/artists involved. The publisher won two awards at last year’s gathering. As for the The International New Age Trade Show, you may remember that I reported on their contraction due to the economy last year.

Our pal Don Rimer is hitting the newswires again, promoting his upcoming appearance on a forensics radio program.

“Talk Forensics, a new talk radio show hosted by Larry E. Daniel of Guardian Digital Forensics, is proud to announce that DON RIMER Ritual Crime & The Occult Expert will be the guest this Sunday, July 5th at 4pm eastern. Don Rimer is a retired, 33-year veteran of the Virginia Beach, Virginia Police Department. He currently serves as the Public Information officer and Chaplain for the Virginia Gang Investigators Association. He is an internationally recognized authority on Ritual Crime and the Occult. He serves as an investigator and consultant to agencies throughout the United States and Canada.”

Ah yes, an “internationally recognized authority” (recognized by whom, exactly) who mixes just enough CYA (cover your assets) disclaimers into his old-school “occult crime” scare tactics to continue booking those speaking gigs at churches and civic groups. No doubt he’ll be around soon to remind us that he has a Wiccan friend advisor who gives him books to read.

In a final note, it looks like the Vatican is going to be tightening the theological reigns on American Nuns. Prompted by Cardinal Franc Rodé, who publicly wondered if some Nuns were operating “outside” the bounds of Church doctrine, orders will be evaluated on how well they are living in “fidelity” to their order’s (and the Church’s) guidelines.

“Cardinal Levada sent a letter to the Leadership Conference saying an investigation was warranted because it appeared that the organization had done little since it was warned eight years ago that it had failed to “promote” the church’s teachings on three issues: the male-only priesthood, homosexuality and the primacy of the Roman Catholic Church as the means to salvation.”

U.S. Bishops have already decreed that the practice of Reiki (energy healing), which was apparently gaining quite a bit of popularity among some nuns, to be outside the bounds of Church doctrine. Will we soon see a crack-down on nuns who have shown hospitality to Goddess-groups in the past? The coming years may be some tough one for the more doctrinally liberal elements in the Catholic Church.

That’s all I have for now, have a great day!

Jason Pitzl-Waters