Dance and Paganism–Your thoughts

Given my particular preference for thinking of Paganism as a religion inextricably tied to dance, I tend to notice any time I read another Pagan use the word dance.

And, in case you haven’t noticed, Pagans talk about dance a lot. But usually they’re talking about dance without actually discussing dance.

We talk about the dance of the elements or the dances of species or the dance of the circle of life or the universe. We write poetry about dancing gods and goddesses. But, while I would say that maybe 10% of the pagan blog posts I read mention dance, I’m not sure I’ve ever read more than a couple that actually speak about the act of dancing (other than a narrative reference that dancing occurred at a particular ritual), and I’m not sure if I’ve ever read any other than my own that explicitly muse of the role of dance in the greater Pagan world. (I have read a few about specific historical dances, and then there is of course the Spiral Dance). Which makes me feel sometimes like I’m standing up on a soapbox talking about dance but missing out on any larger dialogue.

So that’s what I’m asking for. Muse in the comments about what dance means to you, and why it is that we write about the world dancing so much, but not about ourselves dancing, and what you think the relationships is between Pagans and our own dancing bodies. Or link to your favorite article about dance and paganism. Or better yet, write your own blog post on the subject and link to it in the comments.

I can’t wait to read what you guys have to say!

Alopecia, all the gory details

Almost half of the search terms linking to my blog these days are some variation of “I have a bald spot on my head.” So I’ve decided to suck up my pride in hiding all the details of this journey, and write the post I was looking for back when I was the one typing those very search terms into google almost 10 months ago.


So, without further ado, all the gory details of my hair loss journey.

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My review of Brave

I’ve just gone to see Brave, and I want to join a bunch of other Pagans in reviewing it.

But first: “La Luna”! That beautiful, moving, short before the movie! It seemed truly like a myth, a story of the moon, and family. It took place in a modern Mythic Time: an amorphous epoch where modernity is apparent, but no specific period is referenced. And the story that it tells about the moon is as good as many of the ancient ones that tell the stories of the planetary behaviors. When Brave comes out on disc, I will be purchasing it, if for nothing else than this short. I think it’s the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen from Pixar. And that’s saying a LOT, given all the truly beautiful films they have created thus far.

Now, moving on to the main event. I really appreciated the pagan themes of Brave, and how she followed the mythical creatures, and they were real, but not evil. I appreciated how Merida wove her own fate, but that in the end, her fate was tied to her past and her ancestry. And that the witch was forgetful and didn’t want to do magic because it always goes wrong (probably because people like to ask for things without thinking them through). I liked that the witch made the point that she has a lot of dissatisfied customers–I was glad they had a self-referential nod to the slightly cliched-ness of the storyline where Merida asks for a spell, and she gets what she wanted, but it goes horribly not like how she wanted it to.

I really appreciated how it dealt with the real coming of age stories of young girls, but in a legendary sort of way. How mothers do everything they can for their daughters, but the daughters want to forge their own paths, and how difficult it is to get through that. It really hit home for me with my relationship to my mother. And shows that the only way out is growing up, and realizing that your mother is a real person with feelings, and understanding that what she does, she does out of love.

Okay, but seriously? Can there stop being movies about ancient times where royalty are forced to marry someone they don’t want to and then at the end, they convince someone to change the law of the land so they can marry who they please? I mean, come on. It’s cliche, and it’s anachronistic.