A Smudging of Articles and a Ghost Poem

francisco-de-goya-y-lucientes-witches-sabbath-the-great-he-goat
The Witches Sabbath or The Great He-Goat, Francisco Goya.

It is Halloween and instead of talking about the ghosts running around in my head, and around my house. I want to share a few articles that explore the topics of the dead, ancestors, devotion, and also a poem by Samuel Taylor Coleridge.

Modernity has birthed a culture that is so hellbent on defying nature and extending youth that it has developed a repulsion to aging and death. Rather than being part of the natural cycle of spiritual existence – a new beginning as understood by countless traditional societies,  death is viewed as a finality, a tainted and unclean evil that is detested and feared. 

  • The Spirit Court. A wonderful article by the wise and magical Camelia Elias, on tutelary spirits, divining, and as always, the cards.

We all know it, and if we don’t all know it, we all feel it, and if we don’t all feel it, we all think it, and if we don’t all think it, we all desire it: A strong connection to the unseen, to the ones who came before us.

Sustained devotion to process is also the ‘thing itself’. It is clear that hundreds or thousands of hours of work at a thing are what makes a person better at that thing. This is sustained devotion. This is the nature of practice.

A ritual is only good as it puts you on the path of non-identification with whatever arises: a thought, a demon, a god, depression, a ghost, an ancestor, a star.

  • The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, by Samuel T. Coleridge. I will not post the whole poem here as it is long, but I leave you the link. There is also an audio option there. Enjoy the poem, it is one of my favorites, as I love Coleridge and I also love nautical themes.

How a Ship having passed the Line was driven by storms to the cold Country towards the South Pole; and how from thence she made her course to the tropical Latitude of the Great Pacific Ocean; and of the strange things that befell; and in what manner the Ancyent Marinere came back to his own Country.

It is an ancient Mariner,
And he stoppeth one of three.
‘By thy long grey beard and glittering eye,
Now wherefore stopp’st thou me?
witches-sabbath-1798-goya
The Witches Sabbath, Francisco Goya.

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