RICHMOND, Va. — Standing Rock and the Keystone XL pipeline have attracted most of the media attention in recent months, but there are many pipelines proposed or being built in the United States, some through sensitive wilderness areas. In Virginia, Pagans have been standing shoulder to shoulder with Native Americans and local landowners in their effort to stop the Mountain Valley and Atlantic Coastline pipelines. These pipelines “have become more urgent in northwest Virginia, where fracking wouldn’t be financially worthwhile,” according to Maya Sparks, an activist who has been involved in the recent efforts primarily by providing communications and esoteric support. “Pipelines do transport fracked gas, and that’s what they want in Virginia.”
UNITED KINGDOM — On Oct. 6 this year, the British Government granted fracking company Cuadrilla permission to begin operations at two sites in Lancashire (north-west England). This decision, taken by Business Secretary Sajid Javid, overturned a previous decision made by the Lancashire County Council to grant permission at just one of the two proposed sites. Under the banner of Frack Free Lancashire, a coalition of local anti-fracking groups has formed. Included in the coalition is the inimitable mothers and grandmothers group The Nanas.
In 1940, Walter Benjamin wrote, “The tradition of the oppressed teaches us that the ’emergency situation’ in which we live is the rule. We must arrive at a concept of history which corresponds to this. Then it will become clear that the task before us is the introduction of a real state of emergency; and our position in the struggle against Fascism will thereby improve.” (thesis 8) It’s a good thing that Pagans and Polytheists have been talking about strengthening their communities and developing defense and solidarity networks, but black and brown people in America have long been living in an “emergency situation.” Obama has deported over 2.5 million undocumented immigrants while in office.
CALGARY, Alb. — Members of Pagan and Wiccan communities across Canada were saddened to hear of the passing of elder Margarian Bridger (1957-2016). Born in the prairie city of Regina, Saskatchewan February 7, 1957, Margarian was raised in Toronto where she attended the University of Toronto, Victoria College. She graduated in 1979 with a Bachelor of Science in Geology. In 1991, Margarian began the study of Witchcraft with the Calgary-based Covenant of Gaia Church of Alberta (COGCOA). A year later she was initiated into the Black Ring lineage of Branwen Stonecipher.
[Today we welcome Liz Cruse, a poet , passionate environmentalist and Druid in the Order of Bards Ovates and Druids. Cruse has worked as a nurse, health educator and trainer and has a profound interest in plants for healing, magic and food. She has Degrees in History and English and a Masters in Art History. Cruse facilitates workshops in the areas of Druidry and protection of the land. Recently she participated in the Generation Hex: Paganism and Politics at Cambridge University Department of Anthropology.]
I am standing in a field holding the northern gateway in a ceremony.