Today’s offering is by columnist Luke Babb. Luke is a storyteller and eclectic polytheist who primarily works with the Norse and Hellenic pantheons. They live in Chicago with their wife and a small jungle of houseplants, where they are studying magic and community building – sometimes even on purpose. The Wild Hunt always welcomes submissions for its weekend section. Please send queries to firstname.lastname@example.org.
I’m on the road today to visit family, but here’s a few quick notes for you. Thresholds of Life: Over at Patheos.com, Star Foster shares her audio interview with Pagan priestess and Death Midwife Nora Cedarwind Young, recorded at this year’s Pagan Spirit Gathering. “Before Pagan Spirit Gathering I had never heard of a death-midwife but it makes perfect sense. Midwives were healers of body and spirit, they guided people through the transition of birth, death and even marriage by matchmaking. While birth midwives have been making a comeback since the 1970’s, midwives who help families with the transition of death are still uncommon. Along with sharing her stories and thoughts about PSG, Nora Cedarwind Young told us about death-midwives: what they do and how she became one.”
The St. Petersburg Times reports on the case of a grave desecration in which a skull was stolen. Turns out it wasn’t practitioners of Santeria, Vodou, Satanism, or any other “occult” religion, it was some stupid kids out for a thrill. “Nick Macchione wanted the skull. On his knees, he reached inside the broken crypt and felt around the bones and rotting clothes until he grasped it.
Four recent news reports tie into two larger stories, the first is the issue of Pagan burial space, a matter that will become more prominent as the Baby Boomers travel further into their retirement years. There are already dedicated spaces in Wisconsin and Washington in America, and an Asatru-dedicated space in Denmark. Now we can add at least two more, an Asatru space in Norway, and a Pagan-inclusive interfaith woodland burial park in the UK. “Leaders of 11 faiths travelled to Beaconsfield to dedicate the largest woodland burial park in the country yesterday. Set in ancient woodlands off the A40, the £3.2 million Chilterns Woodland Burial Park at Potkiln Lane opened in October and so far around 40 people are buried there.