Clio Ajana is an Archieria for the House of Our Lady of Celestial Fire, E.O.C.T.O. in the Hellenic Alexandrian Witchcraft & Spiritual Tradition, and she also practices Romuva (Baltic Heathenry). She currently lives in Central Minnesota. Her interests include divination, eldercare, prison ministry, and death midwifery. She considers everything in her life to be touched by and guided by the Gods.
September lies in the heart of Pagan Pride season, where communities large and small come together to celebrate all that it means to be Pagan. On Pagan Pride Day in many places, one of the public components is the act of giving back, such as hosting a food drive for the homeless. Many Pagan Pride Day celebrations are held in parks, as one requirement of these events is that the festival be held in a public venue. At these times, those who have little to no knowledge of Paganism can find the best of any local community in one place during one day. Whether through the variety of rituals, music, vendors, or religious organizations on display, a local person who might have an interest in Paganism can seek and find answers to questions. For those who already consider the Pagan community home in some sense or another, Pagan Pride events are also the perfect places to find role models or mentors.
The beginning of August is the heart of summer in the northern hemisphere. We soak in the sun, enjoy picnics with our families, and find ways to get outdoors as often as we can when the weather permits. There are just enough days left before fall to forget that eventually the temperatures will cool and the nights will grow shorter as we head toward winter. Many of us will celebrate a sabbat of abundance, featuring a table piled high with the gifts that nature provides: flourishing fruits and vegetables, mouthwatering smells from foods grilled outdoors, and the feel of lush green grass beneath our feet. During this time, we give thanks for what we have gained, both from our toil in the field and from our internal labors.
July in the northern hemisphere is a month for heat, celebration, and fun. Pagan celebrations abound. In the United States, the Fourth of July heralds Independence Day, a national celebration of freedom gained in part through the signing of a formal document that explains why a group of colonies broke away from their colonizers. The Declaration of Independence is a representation of choice and has been used as a model for other countries around the world. The spirit of such a document is celebrated annually with feasting, fireworks, and flags.
One of the hardest things to do in this fast paced world is to pause or to take a break from ordinary routines. June is symbolic of transitional pauses such as weddings, high school graduations, and summer picnics. It is a time for taking a day off work or attending a celebration. While weddings, graduations, and summer fun with the kids can last a day or maybe a weekend, the type of break that refreshes on a deeper level is extended time away to renew the body, mind, and spirit. Taking a full vacation, a weekend or just four or five days away from the normal routine of life can have a tremendous impact on how life resumes post-break.
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In the Northern Hemisphere, the start of May is a time when each of us, nature included, breaks free from winter’s restrictions to indulge in the tentative unfurling of spring. We dance, we play, we sing, we gather, we celebrate, and we create. For many, the lengthening days with more sunlight are an invitation to enjoy the increase in energy.