• Monthly Columns

    Lupercalia: The Ancient Pagan Roots of Valentine’s Day

    What is Lupercalia?   It’s a chilly February day, and snow is coming down in my neck of the woods as I write this. I look out my window, seeing the snow fall and am dreaming of warm summer days returning, and my trip to Southern California late last Summer. But, amidst my daydreams, I see a bit of hope; Imbolc is typically when Neo-Pagans celebrate the returning strength of the Sun, and the coming of Spring. For me, Imbolc is about healing, and reconnecting to your inner child/maiden, regardless of gender identity. Lupercalia, celebrated on February 15th, is more focused on love, in all its forms. In my personal…

  • Interviews

    Witch Hunt

      There are witches all around us. You can find them anywhere… The Witch on Wheels has been documenting her findings.   Meet: Elaine Lockhart Elaine Lockhart is one of very few hereditary witches I’ve met, and she is grateful to have had the opportunity to embrace all that is magical from an early age. Her family has been practicing the Old Ways for six consecutive generations. Elaine is the fourth generation of this oral tradition that stretches from her great-grandmother to her grandchildren. “We have our own moral and ethical codes,” she said. Yearly celebrations revolve around the cyclical nature of raising cattle (mating, birthing, changing pastures, etc.). In…

  • Monthly Columns

    Notes from the Apothecary

    Notes from the Apothecary: Snowberry   Snowberry, or Symphoricarpos, is the name for 15 or so shrubs that boast gorgeous white berries. The plant is part of the honeysuckle family, and is also known as waxberry or the beautifully evocative name, ghostberry.     The inspiration to write about this plant came from my 13-year-old, who sent me this cute WhatsApp message on his way home (pictured). It’s lovely to be the “go-to” person for plant info, and nice to be able to give some fast advice on a potentially toxic plant! The interesting thing about snowberries is that, while they can be toxic, they’re also used medicinally in some…

  • Monthly Columns

    MagickalArts

    What Are the Magickal Arts? … As magickal practitioners we are all “artists” in our own ways, honing our skills of creating magick, weaving patterns of energy that affect change and calling to the most Divine of our natures as we align with cosmos, greater earth and all of the many Beings that inhabit those realms. And, I like where this trend is taking us in exploring the craft in all of forms….   Samhain brings the opportunity for reconnecting with our deceased Beloveds and acknowledge our place in the cycles of life and death. This issue we honor…   Magickal Art of Becoming the Ancestors!   Who Are the…

  • Interviews,  Monthly Columns

    Witch Hunt

      There are witches all around us. You can find them anywhere… The Witch on Wheels has been documenting her findings.   Meet: Weyland Smith       I met Weyland Smith when he became one of the new contributors to PaganPagesOrg, having written previously for other publications. Talking with him prompts laughter, wisdom, and more laughter stimulated by a wicked sense of humor and his life experiences, all of which comes through in this interview. An eclectic solitaire wytch, he lives in New Jersey with his girlfriend, Sparkle, and their familiars Spirit the cat and Delinquent the dog. Weyland is a Libra, a romantic, and a believer in reincarnation…

  • Monthly Columns

    Notes from The Apothecary

    Notes from the Apothecary: Petunias   Petunias: Both a beautiful garden flower and a star of the RNA-focused scientific community. Way back in the 1990s, scientists tried to create deep purple petunias by inserting the gene associated with this colour. Instead, the flowers just came out white! Further studies into this led to big discoveries concerning RNA interference and gene silencing, for which scientists Andrew Fire and Craig Mello received the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. But it all started with the petunias. Petunia is not a single species, but a genus of flowers that contains around 35 distinct species. They’re all in the Solanaceae family, which also includes…

  • Monthly Columns

    Learning Lunar

    Moon Magic and Mystery   The Waning Gibbous Moon Welcome back to Learning Lunar, our regular column looking at different phases of the moon and how you can work them into your spiritual practice. For this Samhain edition of PaganPagesOrg, we’re looking at a waning phase of the moon for the first time: The Waning Gibbous Moon. What Does Waning Gibbous Mean? A waning moon is one that appears to be getting smaller each night, eventually culminating in a dark moon or new moon. As soon as the moon becomes full, the days beyond this are considered the time of the waning moon. A waning gibbous moon falls between the…

  • Monthly Columns

    Weyland’s Whey

    For Your Deliberation If you were on trial for being a witch, would there be enough evidence to convict you?   Goodbye, My Friend Our feline companion and familiar, Jinx, crossed over the Rainbow Bridge this morning.  Old, gaunt and confused, we knew it would be selfish to keep him with us any longer.  He was a champion.  And he will be missed.   Friendship Is Magic, Too by Weyland Smith It had been a while since I’d talked to my compadre Mihos.  We’d been in the old coven together and had managed to stay in sporadic contact over the years.  It would be fun to talk witchery with him…

  • Spells & Rituals

    SpellCrafting: Spells & Rituals

    New Year’s Intentions Merry meet! With Samhain marking the end of one year, it’s a time to focus our intentions on the witches’ new year ahead – and help them manifest. This spell will match a wish to each of the elements.     Prepare an altar for Samhain with a candle for each of the elements. Have four small pieces of paper and, to put them in, four envelopes or small glass jars. Add sacred objects, and perhaps items related to your intentions. Put the four aces from the Minor Arcana, which will represent the elements, and the Nine of Cups, the wish card, on the altar.   Burn…

  • Spells & Rituals

    The Rite Way

    A Ritual for Samhain   This Samhain ritual is written for a solitary practitioner, but can be adapted for more than one. In sacred space, you will be writing your own Charge of the Dark Goddess or God … or both. Because I prefer to spread out materials, I will be setting up a minimalist altar on my dining room table with a black candle; a pentacle; objects representing each of the elements; books, papers, and computer, a cup of a psychic tea blend, and pumpkin bread. To begin, cleanse your space by ringing a bell, clapping your hands, or smudging the area. Create sacred space to protect you and…