Saturday, 28 May 2011

I missed last year's Magdalene karakol; I shan't miss it this year and for ever.

Something I wrote for Her several years back.


Mayo a veinte ocho nanamán.
Simulâ na ng pagbuhos ng ulán.
Dalá ng lakambining nangantimugan.
Magdalena ang kanyáng pangalan. 

Aba at Junio na.
Nagbalik na ang Magdalena.

Maryá Magdalenang dalá ng dayuhan
Salamín ng bathalumang nakalimután.
Ngayó'y sa amin nang nanahan
Naibsán ang pagtangis sa nakaraán.

Sakáy ng alon saami'y nakaabot.
Kamí'y isukob sa iyóng salakót.

Kulóg at kidlát ang kanyáng dalá
Ulán para sa nangansaka.
Pagkaing tubo mulâ sa lupà
Siyáng biyayà ng Magdalena.

Halina at kamí'y basaín.
Dingín itóng aming dalangin.

Papuri't galák sa lakambining Maryá
Sayáw mo sa amin ay ligaya
Ulán mong buhay sa amin at paritó
At sa susong-lupang inalayan mo. 

Aba, aba! Poón naming Maryá.
Amen; siyá nawá ang wikà nilá.


Yes, I know, she's not at all like the biblical Mary Magdalene. This is pure polytheistic love.

Sunday, 15 May 2011

So, the world's going to end in 7 days?

So says It's disgusting, really. Every time a natural disaster comes our way, a bunch of crazies claim it's part of some ancient desert prophecy. Really now?

These doomsday-mongers should really just calmthefuckdown. All these natural "disasters" are only omens of a living and breathing world, not its final destruction. A real doomsday sign would be green rain or cold fire; but why would that even happen?

Of course, the world will surely end. It's a probability supported by science. All things die. A creature's death is the end of its world, after all. Stars and planets are no different. Our planet is no different. Our species is no different; no matter how convinced others are that we're something special. There is no preexisting reason why things live or die. We just do.

But if you think a major catastrophe happening sometime soon makes these bible-thumping crackpots right, think again. "The End of Times" is something that nature determines; not man or scripture. If you're the type to identify god with nature, then yes, god determines the expiration date. But who is privy to the mind of such a god? No one. And especially not these nutters.

Why should it even matter, anyway? Should our world begin to crumble on the 21st of May, suck it up and survive. Cease your whining; it's not about us. It wasn't about the dinosaurs when it happened to them. The world is simply reshuffling, and it's best to play her game and dance her rhythms; because that's the only thing we can do.

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

This is a test post. Jai Devi Mata!


This is a test post. Jai Devi Mata!

Thor is an opportunity. People will seek out Pagans due to this film, silly as that may sound.


Rather than concern ourselves with whether or not the film is disrespectful, whether it’s appropriate for Heimdallr to be played by a black actor or wonder why on earth they made Sif a brunette, we should focus on the practical fallout from this film. We know what happened with The Craft, we know Heathenry is growing leaps and bounds and we need to expect this film to be significant.

I think we should look at this film as if we are a spiritually and culturally hungry person. As if we are a 16 year old young woman considering a military career and in need of a warrior ethic. As if we are a homemaker taking her kids to an action-flick who is suddenly overwhelmed by Frigga. As if we are a man with a newborn who stumbled across Asatru looking up info on the film and is looking for a spiritual tradition for his family. Because those are the people who will be coming to us with questions. We shouldn’t dismiss them for referencing Thor like so many seekers were dismissed for coming to Wicca by way of The Craft. Maybe Thor will lead folks to their path, and maybe there will be folks who need to be gently dissuaded, but they all deserve positive, straightforward and enlightening answers.

Thor is an opportunity. People will seek out Pagans due to this film, silly as that may sound. When they come we should greet them with answers and hospitality, especially if we weren’t received that way. Thor can mark a change not only for seekers, but for how our communities interact with them.

Read the rest of the quoted article here.

Sunday, 8 May 2011

I wish to use the genuine love this Hallmark holiday has generated to wish all mothers the best of fortunes!

May Maia, the Good Mother, the Nurturer, mother of Swift-footed Hermes, bless all mothers on this day and for ever; my mother, grandmothers, aunts, grandaunts, sisters, cousins, and friends no less.

Happy Mothers Day!

The question of the nature/nurture of gayness is getting old and irrelevant.


Does a gay man really need to be "born that way" to be respected and to share equal rights with heteronormative citizens? Of course not. Genetics is beside the point. If it were entirely genetic -- and I highly doubt it is -- so what? You can't use that reason alone as a basis for human rights. We all deserve to walk our own paths, regardless if we've been "this way" since we were 5 or 50.

I've got an amazing boss.

I know it's too early to say for sure, and I'm sure a few things will come up in the future where we'll disagree with each other; but, right now, I think he's a really awesome guy.

He's Bengali, by the way, and I made sure I pointed that out on my first day at work (I just love their language). Naturally, he was surprised I knew. How many young non-Indians do you meet everyday who can tell a Sindhi from a Bengali Indian. He was also amazed at how I know about bhajans and said he was touched to know I believe in Ma Durga. I told him I've got a few Hindu friends, but what I really wanted to say was: "Yes, I know, I'm smart".

He's definitely one of the best foreigners I've met. On his first day, he already learnt a few useful words in the local language and he refuses to eat hotel food because he prefers to eat where the natives do, claiming you have to acquaint yourself with the spirit of a place every time you visit another country. Amazing, isn't he?

Anyway, I'm really excited to be under his guidance. He's really smart, very cultured, and he has an amazing way of telling stories where he just goes on and I don't get bored or sleepy.

I pray for his genius that it may bless him, his family, and all his endeavours for all the days to come. Nômoshkar!

Still my favourite Bengali song: Beautiful voice, language, song, scenery; beautiful everything.

English lyrics:

The same stream of life that runs through my veins night and day runs through the world and dances in rhythmic measures.

It is the same life that shoots in joy through the dust of the earth in numberless blades of grass and breaks into tumultuous waves of leaves and flowers.

It is the same life that is rocked in the ocean-cradle of birth and of death, in ebb and in flow.

I feel my limbs are made glorious by the touch of this world of life. And my pride is from the life-throb of ages dancing in my blood this moment.

Bengali lyrics:

Bhulbona ar shohojete
Shei praan e mon uthbe mete
Mrittu majhe dhaka ache
je ontohin praan

Bojre tomar baje bashi
She ki shohoj gaan
Shei shurete jagbo ami

Bojre tomar baje bashi
She ki shohoj gaan
dao more shei gaan

Shei jhor jeno shoi anonde
Chittobinar taare
Shopto-shindhu dosh digonto
Nachao je jhonkare!

Bojre tomar baje bashi
She ki shohoj gaan
Shei shurete jagbo ami

Bojre tomar baje bashi
She ki shohoj gaan

Shei shurete jagbo ami
Bojre tomar baje bashi
She ki shohoj gaan
dao more shei gaan

At dahil masokista akó ngayón, pinápanuod ko nanamán 'to para magngúngumawà akó.


Sunday, 1 May 2011

Beltane: Where exactly is this happening in the Philippines?

Today is Beltane! At this sacred time of the year, we nature-worshipping bumpkin-wannabes gather once more to honour the fertility of the land and the vibrance of life, symbolised by the courtship and marriage of the divine powers behind nature. Joy once more returns as life conquers death; oak defeats holly; summer overpowers winter. All the earth is alive again! From plants to animals to humankind! Let us all celebrate the vital passion that now gushes forth from the womb of the earth!

Can you feel the surging force of this joyous sabbat yet? Take a look at some photos I took recently to celebrate this vibrant season of life.

Can you feel the loving embrace of drought now? Truly, the return of summer is celebrated the same way across countries. After all, if it's happening in Britain -- home of 25,000 year old Wicca -- it should be the same in the Philippines, yes? Right? Right?

In case you're daft today, I was being sarcastic. The tomatoes seem to be fine, though. Who's in for a tomato sabbat?

Catholics shouldn't need the Vatican to declare who they should pray to or how.

People should be able to choose their own saints. After all, another man's saint can be another person's wretch. You can't force a person's blessedness down people's throats; they need to decide on that for themselves.

This is not meant to dismiss the recent beatification of the late Pope John Paul II in any way. I actually like him; I'm happy a lot of people like him, too. That personal conviction is enough for me, though, and others have no business telling me it isn't.

Likewise (let's pretend I'm still christian), just because the Vatican lists Boniface (he-who-was-hacked-because-he-was-a-selfrighteous-antipagan-arsehole) a saint doesn't mean I should like him or start praying to him. A shared religious experience is an amazing thing, but ultimately religion is a personal matter.

Conclusion: The Vatican is outdated and unnecessary. Revere one, three or a thousand, or none. It is your business and you should decide on what you believe; what others say is merely commentary.