• Monthly Columns

    Beyond Belief: Trees

    By the time you read this I will have had my first spot on British national radio. Specifically, the Beyond Belief radio show for BBC Radio 4. American readers, you may be able to get this online! The show was about the religious and spiritual significance of trees, from the perspective of different faiths. I was one of three experts recruited to debate and discuss the topic. So, how did this come about? Well, I was lucky enough that one of my esteemed colleagues from the Pagan Federation pointed me in the direction of a particular post on Facebook. It was from the Arboricultural Association, a British organisation dedicated to…

  • Monthly Columns

    Notes from the Apothecary

    Notes from the Apothecary: Yarrow One of my favourite wild plants, yarrow is found right across North America, Europe and even as far east as China. The feathery leaves give way to clusters of beautiful, tiny flowers that are loved by bees and other pollinators. Most commonly they are cream or white, but there are many coloured varieties too, including some incredible bright red species that are currently adorning my local park. The plant’s formal name is achillea millefolium. The first part refers to the association with Achilles, who was taught by the centaur Chiron to use the herb to staunch the bleeding of his soldiers. The second part refers…

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    Circle

    Circle we dreamed Seen in a haze “One of these days…” We banished that phrase Circle we saw In places we’d been That made us feel keen To make what we’d seen Circle we drew Guidance from past We need it to last So steady, not fast Circle we built Stone out of sand Sprouts from the land Raised by our hand. Circle we blessed Speaking to sky Heart mind and eye A soul that shall fly Circle we are When stone meets the sea Continuity Love; hope; family. Copyright 3rd October 2012 *** About the Author: Mabh Savage is a Pagan author, poet and musician, as well as a freelance…

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    Notes from the Apothecary

    Notes from the Apothecary: Book Recommendations Hi all! Summer is here, and we might all need to take a break from the heat every now and then. With that in mind, I thought it might be good to give you a little insight into the books I use to help me craft each month’s Notes from the Apothecary. Then you’ll have some light reading to do while you’re sat in a nice air-conditioned room somewhere- or out in the park! I love plants of all types, and often my research comes from experience. However, when looking at the medical uses, particularly from bygone eras, I refer to many different volumes.…

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    The Road to Runes

    The Road to Runes: The Second Ætt Last month we went back to basics and looked at the meanings of the first ætt of Elder Futhark runes. This month, we’re exploring the second ætt of Elder Futhark runes, from Hagalaz to Sowulo. This ætt is also known as Heimdall’s ætt but also, sometimes, Hel’s ætt. In an attempt to learn the runes more deeply, I’ve been drawing (writing?) them out in ink, so this month is illustrated with my own hand drawings. Hagalaz: The sound “H”. Also known as Haglaz or Hagala. Its literal meaning is hail, and in Viking rune poems is sometimes described as a cold, white seed.…

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    The Road to Runes

    The Road to Runes: Back to Basics The Elder Futhark runes are a Germanic alphabet, a writing system and a divination tool. For the past few months, I’ve focused on a different rune or reading every month. I thought it might be useful to list each of the runes and their meaning as a point of reference. This month, I’m focusing on the first ætt, or set of eight of the 24 runes. This ætt is known as Freyr’s, Frey’s or Freyja’s ætt. Each ætt is dedicated to a deity or deities, or overseen by them, to match that ætt to the aspects of those deities. Frey and Freyja are…

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    By the Sea

    (Photo by Ivana Cajina on Unsplash) Under windswept trees  I close my eyes  I am surrounded by the seas. Oceanic, Sweeping over Through  Beyond me. Beeches, No beaches But the waves are the same. White horses gallop Through my tired mind. I am surrounded by the seas. Rushing towards Blinkered eyes Illusion of sound All around me. I am surrounded by the seas. Green and lush Ever moving Never still Nor calm Nor gentle… Leaves for seaweed; Cones for shells; Birds for flying fish Humans for sharks: Avoided. Like a rock I wash up beneath my tree Surrounded by the sea, The sighing, crying sea. Copyright 12th August 2016 ***…

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    A Prayer to the Celtic God Lugh for Justice

    Lugh, see through my eyes Hear with my ears Feel the pulse in my neck Judge for thine own self If I have been wronged. Let these criminals Trip upon their own swords Fall upon their own cleverness Fail in their endeavours And know no peace until Shame forces them to cease Their unjust actions. Lamhfada, weapons reaching far Cast your spear through time Cause those who wronged me to fall To wrong no more Lest strange sunrise in the west Blind them to all that is good. Copyright Mabh Savage 2019 All Rights Reserved *** About the Author: Mabh Savage is a Pagan author, poet and musician, as well as…

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    Interview with Annwyn Avalon: Water Witch

    Dancer, artist, author, witch, priestess; with this many titles and roles, it’s clear that Annwyn Avalon is kept busy. Fresh from a workshop at Pantheacon, Annwyn was kind enough to talk to Mabh here at PaganPagesOrg about her new book, Water Witchcraft, and other aspects of her work. Mabh Savage: How would you describe the concept of water witchcraft to a complete novice? Annwyn Avalon: Water Witchcraft, simply put, is Witchcraft that uses water as the main modality for their magic and/or they may use water related items, work with water spirits and deities and perform many of their spells or rituals with, on, or near water. A Sea Witch…

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    Notes from the Apothecary

    Notes from the Apothecary: Allspice Allspice is the fruit of pimento dioica, a type of myrtle tree. It was discovered by Columbus on the island of Jamaica, but is also native to many more islands in the Caribbean plus much of central America. P. dioica is now cultivated around the world wherever the climate is warm enough. Allspice is also known as the Jamaica Pepper, the Myrtle Pepper, or pimenta. The Kitchen Garden Growing allspice yourself can be tricky if you don’t live in a climate similar to that of the West Indies. It’s possible to get the tree to grow in cooler climates, but often it will not bear…