• Monthly Columns

    An Excerpt from Practically Pagan: An Alternative Guide to Planet Friendly Living

    Recently, non-violent environmental activist group Extinction Rebellion took to the streets of London to protest governments investing in fossil fuels. Regardless of your political affiliations, we can all agree that looking after our planet is good for everyone, human and otherwise! Here is an excerpt from Mabh Savage’s upcoming book, Practically Pagan: An Alternative Guide to Planet Friendly Living, considering ways of fighting the systems that contribute towards an unhealthy planet and global ecosystem.     I think some Pagans and spiritual folks may avoid intense environmental activism because they may be concerned that their practice may become too political. It’s easy to get bogged down in politics, which as…

  • Monthly Columns

    Notes from the Apothecary

    Notes from the Apothecary: Clover     Clover is also called trefoil, literally “three-leaves”, and grows in most places around the world. Although many clover plants look similar, there are around 300 species of Trifolium and they’re in the same plant family as peas. Both the round, joyful flowers and the iconic triplet of small, round leaves have a ton of folklore around them – and some surprising modern research, too.   The Kitchen Garden Red and white clover are the most common where I live, and often pop up in lawns without any encouragement from gardeners. As well as being a fantastic food source for bees and other insects,…

  • Monthly Columns

    An Irreverent Lughnasadh

    Lughnasadh is my least ‘religiously’ observed festival. That seems pretty irreverent for a practicing Pagan, I guess, but my reasons are thus: Lughnasadh tends to fall at the time of year that I am busiest; either with my lovely children, or with camping, or catching up with friends, or all of the above. It can be a busy time in the garden, and it also falls right bang in the middle of the first section of the foraging season. We’ve just run out of wild elder flowers and are moving onto raspberries and blackberries, some of Lugh’s favourite offerings, although that’s from personal experience and not attested to in Irish…

  • Monthly Columns

    Notes from the Apothecary

    Notes from the Apothecary: Stinging Nettles     Called nettles, stinging nettles, or common nettle, this jagged-leafed plant is a hardy little medicine cabinet packed with folklore and magic. Urtica Dioica is the scientific name for the most commonly recognised species, and it’s found all over the world in hedgerows, woodlands, and anywhere where there is space for it to grow. Gardeners may hate nettles for stinging their fingers unexpectedly when weeding, and anyone who has been out hiking in shorts knows what a nettle sting on the leg feels like! But these feisty and fierce “weeds” have more uses than you would imagine, and can easily be forgiven for…

  • Monthly Columns

    Notes from the Apothecary

    Notes from the Apothecary: The Orange     Oranges: juicy, bright globes filled with vitamin C and sunshine. The orange is a citrus fruit that’s one of the most cultivated fruits in the world, and may have been cultivated by humans for around 2,500 years. The sweet orange as we know it today is a hybrid of mandarins and pomelos, and is very different from bitter oranges, the likes of which often line the streets of towns in Mediterranean countries. I once made the mistake of plucking and peeling a juicy looking orange while in Spain, only to have my mouth shrivelled by the intense bitterness! Sweet oranges, in comparison,…

  • Monthly Columns

    Bees in Folklore, Religion, and Superstition

      This is an adapted extract of a video I did recently for Pagan Aid to help raise awareness of their campaign to raise money for Bees for Development, an organisation that helps some of the poorest communities in the world create livelihoods through beekeeping. You can view the original video here.   There are over 250 species of bee in the UK and around 4,000 native species in the United States. Even humble bumblebees have at least 24 separate species, from orange and black red-tailed bumblebees to the classic white, yellow, and black tree bumblebees. However, it’s the honeybee that gets the most attention, generally, when it comes to…

  • Reviews & Interviews

    Book Review – Pagan Portals:Lugh- Meeting the Many Skilled God by Morgan Daimler

    Book Review Pagan Portals Lugh Meeting the Many Skilled God by Morgan Daimler Publisher: Moon Books 112 Pages Publication Date: 04/30/2021     I’m always keen to read just about anything Morgan Daimler pens, from their exciting Between the Worlds fiction series to their many detailed and well-sourced books on Irish paganism and fairy lore. This book in particular, though, was high up on my TBR (to be read) list, as I am fascinated with Lugh and have had a back and forth relationship with this complex deity over the years. As Morgan notes in the introduction, there isn’t really a single, solid source out there about Lugh, which seems…

  • Monthly Columns

    Notes from the Apothecary

    Notes from the Apothecary: Lilac     Lilac is a flowering shrub in the olive family, Oleaceae, cultivated in many parts of the world including all across Europe and North America. Robust spikes of delicate yet strongly scented flowers come in colours ranging from purples and pinks through to blues and whites. I’ve been writing Notes from the Apothecary for over 6 years now, and some months I struggle to think of a plant that’s magical, seasonal, and of interest to our readers worldwide. I had no such struggle this month, thanks to the wonderful fragrance that stopped me in my tracks as I was out playing with my 3-year-old…

  • Monthly Columns

    Raising the Next Generation to be Environmentally Kind – An Excerpt from the Upcoming Book ‘Practically Pagan: An Alternative Guide to Planet Friendly Living’ by Mabh Savage

      As we move into warmer months and hopefully have more access to the outside world, I thought it would be timely to share these thoughts about raising kids in a Pagan family to be respectful for Planet Earth. This excerpt is from my upcoming book, Practically Pagan: An Alternative Guide to Planet Friendly Living, available to pre-order now at Amazon and other book stores.   Kids are our greatest teachers when it comes to appreciating the world around us. Anyone who has children or has the chance to interact with children will know that there is nothing more magical than seeing them become enthralled with nature. That look of…

  • Monthly Columns

    Poetry – Bealtaine Beacons

      Bealtaine is when we light the fires Not just for our desires The things we want and need Whether in poverty or greed But simply to connect, to communicate To let folks know that they are great That we miss them, that they matter That we can’t wait to have a natter Or share a coffee, or a walk Or sit in silence, no need to talk. The world isn’t open just yet But as Bealtaine passes, can we set Our beacons alight and say We are here We care And so we share Our Bealtaine beacons with those Who feed our fires the most.   © Mabh Savage…