An Array of Utopian Flowers
- Tribute to SomaFM’s Darkwave channel ‘doomed’
Posted on January 22, 2018 | No Comments
- Christmas Trees, Solstice Rituals, and the Garden of Eden
Posted on January 8, 2018 | No Comments
- The Christmas Cat, in Shadowplay
Posted on December 25, 2017 | No Comments
- Dictatorship in Honduras: US Reinvigorates “Banana Republic” Status
Posted on December 24, 2017 | No Comments
- Extreme Winds and Wildfires, On Overcoming California Climate Chaos
Posted on December 19, 2017 | No Comments
- Tribute to SomaFM’s Darkwave channel ‘doomed’
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Rituals and Traditions Archive
- Posted on February 23, 2014 | 4 CommentsArt Cisneros is a Chumash elder and firekeeper. The Chumash People are the original native peoples of the central California Coast. Art holds the sacred space for their annual Tomol crossing to Limu on the Channel Islands. Lately, he has undertaken a series of ceremonies focused on healing humanity's relationship with the climate, responding to the ongoing drought and extreme weather, prayers that he shared with the people at the Great March for Climate Action LA Launch on March 1, 2014, in the Port of Los Angeles.
- Posted on November 26, 2013 | 1 CommentThe story of a Pilgrim Thanksgiving was a fairy tale told by Lincoln to unite the union. The Wampanoag version of the harvest festival with the English settlers is a day of mourning for a land taken away, a culture subverted and a people disappeared from epidemic and massacre.
- Posted on July 31, 2013 | 3 CommentsAnansi, the trickster from the folktales of the Ashanti of West Africa, takes the shape of a spider who goes to the sky god to buy his stories to share with the world. Anansi's stories would become popular through the African diaspora all over the Caribbean and southern US. Here is an animated retelling called "A Story, A Story."
- Posted on July 18, 2013 | 6 CommentsEvery day, more and more tourists arrive in Iquitos, Peru, seeking spiritual enlightenment or a psychedelic experience first made popular by William Burroughs and the Beatniks in the 1960s. Unfortunately, some well-paid "shamans" lack the experience or understanding of the powerful and sacred botanical brews used for thousands of years for healing and divination. And the gringos-on-holiday often get over their heads in the wilds of the Amazon.
- Posted on April 30, 2013 | No CommentsLike several West African religions, Vodouisants believe in a supreme being called Bondyè, from bon "good" + dyè "God." Because Bondyè is unreachable, Vodouisants aim their prayers to lesser entities, the spirits known as Lwa (Loa), contacted and served through possession. In turn, the Lwa confer material blessings, physical well-being, protection, abundance.
- Posted on April 2, 2013 | 1 CommentEostre - the Germanic goddess of dawn and fertility, whose name gives us the word Easter - must be pleased. Two millennia of Christianity, and she has yet to be displaced from our annual celebration of fecundity. Easter eggs, representing birth, nod to both pagan and Christian traditions.
- Posted on March 6, 2013 | 2 CommentsThe California Condor Recovery Program has defied the odds to rescue from oblivion the last of the prehistorics and icon of Native Californian cosmology. Threats such as lead ammunition, microtrash, and sprawling land development threaten these impressive gains of an endangered species. The film "The Condor's Shadow" documents this struggle.
- Posted on January 9, 2013 | 4 CommentsThe Sacred Land Film Project captured a revival of a canoe ceremony with feasting, dancing and carving, honoring their sacred Ramu River. The region is part of the third largest intact rainforest ecosystem left on earth, where sustainable agriculture and forestry practices have allowed societies to thrive for thousands of years, now threatened by multinational logging interests and corrupt governmental entities.
- Posted on December 21, 2012 | 3 CommentsTwenty five hundred years ago, a group of peoples settled Tikal, surrounded by the lowland rainforests of the Petén Basin of northern Guatemala. Their descendants would create a remarkable civilization that populated cities and villages across much of southern Mexico, Belize and Guatemala. Today, it has returned to the jungle.
- Posted on October 29, 2012 | 19 CommentsIn the pre-Hispanic era, skulls were kept as trophies and displayed during the rituals to symbolize death and rebirth. These ancestors passed down the knowledge that souls exist after death, resting in Mictlan, the land of the dead, not for judgment or resurrection, but for the day each year when they could return home to visit their loved ones.
- Posted on October 22, 2012 | 5 CommentsGroups of Kumeyaay People live in the isolated canyons of the Tijuana River watershed, high in the Baja California peninsula. They harvest acorns and pine nuts, hunt rattlesnake and small animals, collect grasses to weave baskets. They allow a glimpse of what life in Southern California before the Spanish arrived was like.
- Posted on September 30, 2012 | No CommentsIn Siberia, shamans combine a distinctive imagery of reindeer and of bird-flight. Their costumes sometimes include imitation reindeer antlers, occasionally tipped with wings or feathers, placed on the headdress. Like the participants in the Eveny (Evenki) midsummer ritual, shamans may ride to the sky on a bird or a reindeer.
- Posted on July 23, 2012 | 9 CommentsThe Popol Vuh (Maya K'iche' for "Council Book" or "Book of the Community") features a creation myth, the Dawn of Life under the spectre of a flooded world, followed by the epic mythological stories of two Hero Twins: Hunahpu (Blow-gun Hunter) and Xbalanque (Young Hidden/Jaguar-Sun) as they confront the Lords of Death and Disease in the underworld caves of the "Place of Awe."