Can You Wish a Witch a Merry Christmas – Revisited

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Each year I pull up and dust off a blog post I wrote a few years ago entitled “Can You Wish a Witch a Merry Christmas?”

In this past week I have gone to 2 carol concerts, and I have a third to go to next week. I will be meeting friends for a Christmas luncheon later today. In the coming week my children and I will be putting up our Pagan Solstice tree. We will be having our family celebratory meal on the Solstice, but come the morning of the 25th my sons and I will be waking to stockings from Father Christmas and a round of gift-giving, followed by Christmas dinner with their aunt and uncle and cousins and even more gift giving.

The answer then, and now is a most resounding “Yes!” Or, you can say Happy Holidays, or Joyous Yule. Whatever words you use to express your joy, however you may celebrate, it’s all okay.

Christmas is one of many celebrations around the Winter Solstice, celebrated by people from cultures across the world. So much so that many practices and beliefs have merged and crossed to create a secular celebration which is observed by many, whether they follow a religious practice or not.

Since Mabon at the Autumnal Equinox the days have been growing shorter, the nights longer. The Winter Solstice is a time when we welcome back the Sun. On this day it seems to stand still in the sky, neither moving further away nor growing closer, but from this day until the Summer Solstice the days will begin to gradually lengthen once again. Light triumphs over darkness and the world is reborn.

Christians celebrate the birth of Jesus of Nazareth, Jews celebrate Hanukkah, Hindus celebrate Pancha Ganapati, Persians celebrate Sadeh and Chahar Shanbeh Suri. to name but a few amongst many world holy days. What these all have in common is the celebration of the triumph of light (the sun/Son) over darkness.

That sounds like a good reason to celebrate to me.

Feel free to tell me Happy Christmas, and I will wish you a Merry Christmas or a Joyous Yule in return.

Walking the Spiral Path

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When people come to me saying – I want to know what path I should be on. I tell them – you’re already on it. It is impossible to fall off. It may be that your path isn’t as linear and straightforward as you wish it to be, but each meandering off the straight line leads you through lessons and experiences you need in order to get you to where you are today.

Not a circle but a spiral

Spirals have held a significant place in my life for many years now. Not a straight line, not a circle, but a line that curves round on itself coming close to previous experiences but never completely returning. Each turn of the spiral brings us back around into life lessons that are now approached from a new level of understanding and wisdom.

We find spirals in the form of double helixes embedded in our very DNA. Frequently when moving Energy I see strands of it moving in this way, with one strand of the helix spiralling down while a second strand spirals up.

I came across spirals again at university while studying to be a nurse. Nursing theorist Martha Rogers used a children’s toy, the slinky, to demonstrate how she views our movement through time and space to be moving in a spiral. You can read more about Martha Rogers’ theory here.

Circular-Linear Logic

I do wish I still had a copy, but when at university in an anthropology course I took I wrote a paper on the differences between circular and linear logic. I’ve often been accused of using circular logic, generally by someone who sees linear logic as being superior. My thoughts are that as we move forward and progress in our understanding that these two equally valid ways of reasoning will merge creating a new form of logic, which I call Spiral Reasoning.

What does this have to do with life paths?

Well, everything. I have found time and again people seeking to know what path they should be on, what is their calling, what should they be doing? They get discouraged because things don’t seem to be moving forward for them in a linear, straightforward manner.

There is an attitude of – if I am not always progressing in a straight line, then I have fallen off my path.

And I tell them – you can’t fall off your path because you are always on it. Every side road, every meandering are all still part of your life path. You look and say – how much quicker could I have gotten from Point A to where I am now at Point B if only I hadn’t done ______________. (what? If only I hadn’t dropped out of school, gotten pregnant, married too young, worked a job I hated for 10 years.)

To which I say, if you hadn’t dropped out of school, gotten pregnant, married too young, worked a job you hated, or ________, you would not have ended up here where you are today you would have ended up somewhere else.

Each meandering has a purpose. There is a lesson to be learned, a teacher to meet, an experience to have which can bring us into better understanding of ourselves.

So I walk the Spiral Path

A few years back, I did a shamanic journey with the intention of discovering what work I needed to be doing, what my path is supposed to be in other words. I used one of the drumming tracks specifically for this type work made available by Kay Gillard at her wonderful web site, The Shamanic Voice. I highly recommend a wander through the archives there.

I was shown a path that wandered in a Spiral always moving forward, but never in a straight line. It showed me that the times I had “fallen” and life became difficult or stress-filled were the times when, filled with impatience, I tried to push forward in a straight line. It didn’t show me what I was supposed to be doing in this spiral, only that I needed to allow myself to be on this Spiral Path.

It’s taken me a couple years since then to more fully understand what this means. And I am still working on that understanding. For now though, it is enough for me to know that my path is a spiral one, and I can never fall off of it.