Sunday, November 15, 2015

Wheel of Wonder November 15, 2015

Today we continue our three part Shamanic Journey.  Our first part was through the middle world of Land, today, the second part through the lower world of Sea.  In many cultures it is the crossing of a body of water that leads the Shaman, Shamanic Poet, or Shamanic Hero to the land of the ancestors, to the land of the dead.  The hero Vainamoinen from the Kalevala (runos 1-10) crosses the water to reach Tuonola, the land of the dead, in order to glean wisdom from their teachings.  I read of a story from the Iglulik of Greenland in which a Shaman has to journey to the bottom of the sea and show respect to the Spirit of the Sea there, inside of her lair, guarded by a strong and vicious dog, like Cerberus, guard dog of Hades.  The Shaman has to show this respect to the Spirit of the Sea as she had become angered by the men of the land not living as they aught to, without that respect, and without the wisdom to live as they should, they would face storms and bad hunting and lack of fish for the catching.
  Sometimes the Celtic Sea God Llyr is said to represent deep wisdom, deep emotion and oneness with the earth and universe, singularity as it were.  These various tales easily correspond to journeys to the underworld for wisdom, knowledge and healing.  Deep Magic Deep Wisdom, the depths of knowledge represented by the ocean.  The upper world, or the Sky will be the subject of the next part of the journey.

The picture above is entitled "Nereid" and is by an artist named Sussi.  I found it on this blog

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Wheel of Wonder November 8, 2015

Leaves painted in the hues of Autumn complete their wild, windy dance, rain weeps at their passing, but the ground softens to catch them as they fall, making use of their nutrients to feed the Crows, crawlers and seeds.  The cycle continues without harm or hindrance, and we Humans begin the Celtic year anew.

Happily I've been accepted into a fine circle of spirit, and Druidry is strongly on my mind.  As the seasons change so do we.  That journey of life is the very simple, but meaningful subject of reflection today.  Many people, at all times of the year will face their anxieties overcome them, or deal with them and thus redefine the point of reverence, wisdom and relevance they've come to in their life.  The darker half of the year seems uniquely magical in helping this process.  It's no coincidence that All Hallows Eve sounds so much like The Hallowing.  The Hallowing of course, is that unique and inner journey that brings us face to face with our shadowselves, our anxieties and fears, and these allies bring us wisdom that can be transformative in understanding ourselves and the challenges we need to overcome in order to live our lives to the fullest.  These experiences are often described through the metaphor of finding the treasures of the underworld and bringing them back to the middle world we live on.  May this reflective time of the year be beneficial to you as you learn and grow. (which can happen at any age we are living through, even after our pedigrees are processed and our biological growth completed.)
Its like our own Shamanic Journey through the roots and branches of The World Tree.  Today on Wheel of Wonder we started a musical representation of this triskelion journey through Land, Sky and Sea.  We journeyed across the land through metaphor and music and next we will cross the harmonic metaphor of the sea.  I hope you can join me on the journey....

The beautiful picture above the Triskelion is artist unknown to me.  If you know, please send a link.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Wheel of Wonder October 25, 2015

As the bright flame of the Celtic year and all of its experiences begins to light the dimming year, more like coals than bonfires now, I begin to see the connection between the events of the beginning of the year and the experiences I'm having now.  Cause and effect , interconnectedness, the tapestry of living, these things surround me as I look back on the passing year and look ahead on the year yet to come.  Its in this spirit of connection that I find the awe and wonder of being one with all , yet singular unto myself as well.  As I prepare for my Samhain ritual and experience, I see the cyclical nature of this dance around the sun we call a chronological year.  I appreciated the sabbat of Samhain last year and the experiences it brought me, I will do the same this year, but this time I'll observe the Sabbat differently, with a different group of people, this is the harvest of my experiences , I've sown new seeds and now I'll reap the benefits of doing so.
  For some the world holds deeper magic now than last year at this time, and for others, they've found new groups of people they have things in common with, and that's what inspires their love of living.  Perhaps even, others have had loved ones they know die , and in that way leave their lives between last Autumn and this one.  Sometimes that can enrich one's love of life as well; a reminder that this incarnation is a fleeting moment in the course of time, one to make the most of as we head into another year.  The Celtic new year begins at sunset on the 31st of October on the Roman calendar, so happy impending new year, may it bring you a bountiful abundance of amazing experiences and blessed be!

 The picture above is entitled Mabon and is by Jason Harrison, The one below is from the "Witches of the Craft" Website

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Wheel of Wonder October 4, 2015

The Wheel in which I find the most Wonder is the Celtic Wheel of the Year.  Staying in tune with the cycles of the seasons and all their different energies helps many people, myself included find a sense of meaning and movement in their lives.  Thinking about the way we feel as so many people sharing this yearly dance around the sun, how does our energy feel at different times of the year?  Do we love bicycling on a brisk spring day?  Do we feel that we are more in tune with a sacred, life-giving Earth as we plant our flowers and tend our gardens, helping in the hand of creation as we watch food and flowers grow?  During the bright Summer days do we feel more awake and active, enjoying the outdoors and all the activities we can pursue outside, or do we prefer those cozy nights by the fireplace or in our warm and welcoming homes while our friends and family come to visit?  Perhaps you have a preference for skiing through the silent snow, or the crunch of colorful leaves under your feet and the invigorating chill of an autumn hike?  Perhaps you like all of these!  All these experiences lead us ultimately to CONNECTION, either with the earth or other people.  With an open awareness of the realms of spirit and mind it seems like one can feel their inherent life energy moving from the outgoing to the inward turning as they fully experience their life in the changing of the seasons.  To me, all of these moments we engage in our lives are contained within the change of energy and the change of  seasons represented by the Wheel of the Year, especially when I complete the equation with the many holidays of the neo-pagan calendar designed to celebrate solstices, equinoxes, and  those cross quarter days between the change of seasons.
Wheel of Wonder is broadcast across the airwaves from a 4 year university, or state college here in the northwest corner of North America. Every complete sun cycle, or about the start of the new academic year here, I run Wheel of Wonder's foundational episode "the Celtic Wheel of the Year."  This was my weekend to bring these ideas forward to the listeners choosing to live their lives in this way, and to new listeners interested in hearing how other people can think about the cycles of the year in this way.  This weekend was also for those seekers and scholars who might be  interested in understanding the truth behind the pagan point of view. The change of seasons affects all of us where we live.  Some may dread the coming of winter with its ice and snow, some may dread the heat and drought of summer sunshine.  Being deeply in tune, mentally and spiritually, with the change of the seasons, not separate from them, can make these transitions easier. Many people could benefit from understanding how modern earth spiritualists and indigenous faiths have understood these changes we humans have experienced from time immemorial.  Ultimately, we are all, every one of us, people of this earth, living together in this amazing dance around our sun!

I also wish to offer a HUGE thank-you to all those who started or renewed their memberships with KAOS during last week's pledge drive!  Its only through that support that KAOS can justify continuing to offer the sort of free-form, non-commercial radio that allows shows like Wheel of Wonder to stay on the air.  Thanks again!
------Radio Ray

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Wheel of Wonder September 20, 2015

Today we celebrated the coming of the autumnal equinox on Wheel of Wonder!  Mabon, Alban Elfed, Mea'n Fo'mhair, Autumn Equinox, depending on your beliefs and traditions is the time of the second harvest, and the celebration of the physical "food" harvest as well the harvest ing time for what you've learned , and how to use it.  The Autumn mist seems to lend itself easily to bringing one into that reflective, inward space, where we think about what we've experienced in the course of this year.  Of course the Autumn vistas painted upon our eyes by the deciduous trees and their brilliant leaves also play their part in coloring the world , so at least we can have a moment to take in the beauty of this earth, that too is a harvest in and of itself.  Mabon is the name of the lost child of the old goddess Modron, recovered from the underworld by King Arthur and his men in the mythic Welsh poem Preiddeu Annwn, a story of a shamanic journey, often attached to the story the  Culhwch and Olwen.  MAbon represents the return from the inner space of the soul or shamanic journey with wisdom and grace to become a better person in the world.  It is in that pursuit of wisdom that we see "Seven and Arthur " return from the underworld with.  A harvest of Wisdom.  Today we also had a guest on Wheel of Wonder;  Stefanie, a practicing Druid from the OBOD group of Seattle, WA. and she would be someone I've met in the course of the past year, a woman of wisdom, I was glad to have on the show at this time of harvest.  Moving along the course of the Wheel of the Year, brings us to a place of slowing down, and thinking, after we consider what wisdom we've harvested over the past year, and what "seeds we've planted"  in the lives of ourselves and others that did not come to fruition, as well as those that have...we truly reap what we sow in this life.  Shall we approach things differently in the coming year?  During this time of moving our lives indoors when necessary, and celebrating the holidays with friends and family, we have plenty of time to think about what we can do and what we have done with this brief part of our incarnation in this world.......HAPPY HARVEST!  Enjoy the journey

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Wheel of Wonder September 13, 2015

As the Summer begins its annual spin into the beauty of Autumn, I find myself back in the familiar fields, hills and forests of home, excited for another turn around the sun on Wheel of Wonder. Autumn is finally beginning to roll in to the Northwest, the leaves are changing into their colorful autumn gowns ready to dance 'til they fall down as we celebrate the bounty of the season.
The vine maple already carry the festive blush of fall and the nights are cooler and longer.
I face the coming darkness as a crucible of change, not as a shroud of cold and shadow, but as a place to slow down, reflect upon the knowledge reaped in the courses of the passing year so I can proceed to build anew.
At the completion of our sharing information about climate change, I began to share the inward journey, so much a part of the darker half of the year exploring Celtic Shamanism.  John Matthews' book "Taliesin: The Last Celtic Shaman" (1991 aquarian press) and Robert Moss' book "Active Dreaming" are good reads to help understand these ideas.  I hope you caught some of them on Wheel of Wonder.
As we go forward into the coming year, I hope to bring you the perspectives of modern, practicing pagans covering everything from earth spirituality and its place in this world, to native american belief systems, and even pagan prison based ministry through up and coming guests on Wheel of Wonder.  I also have 2-3 more musicians/groups ready to join us on the show to share their music and viewpoints and all because of people starting and renewing memberships with this not for profit radio station that let's me bring them to you:
Wheel of Wonder is intended to be place to share unique music and ideas, so I hope you catch it at, on "Radio Free America", or on your smart phone at "Sound Tap" or "Tune In" I love having access to the Internet and independent media.  I hope you do too, and will support its continuing to be available to seekers everywhere.
--Radio Ray

The images above are a picture of Cascade Pass by Ed Farell and an Illustration of/inspired by musician Autumn Rayne by Derek Emmons

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Wheel of Wonder August 19, 2015

Having returned from a wonderful bit of traveling , off to the barrier islands of the Carolinas, to visit Sea Turtle and Shorebird Sanctuaries, I couldn't help but consider Human impacts on the Earth's Natural Systems.  We Humans with our Post-Industrial hubris are just beginning to understand the negative impacts our actions, our consumerism, and our arrogance are having on Mother Earth.  Some have already learned these lessons and try desperately to share their knowledge with others, but have to shout out so loudly to be heard over the clamor of greed, acquisitiveness, and the grinding gears of the miltary-industrial machine that their voices are carried away from the ears of those who need to hear them.
Pleasantly, Humans are an adaptive species and some good has come from those who listen to their conscience, and even the reputed consciousness of the land, more of a reality for some than for others.  These latter folks can and will take action in this world to help nature adapt, at the same time as they themselves do, to keep the precious natural life cycles of the Earth continuing in perpetuity, for they know if the Earth's Natural Systems suffer so do the animals, plants and Humans.
Among the Atlantic coast of North America's barrier islands are turtle and shorebird sanctuaries, salt marshes, and beach dunes.  At the same time that these ecosystems mitigate flooding and damage from the onslaught of hurricane force winds and rain they also offer habitat and breeding grounds for so much wildlife.  Greedy, acquisitive people will want to build their fancy beach houses (beach MANSIONS really) on stilts within the dunes, and sometimes they will be disciplined for their arrogance by Mother Nature, as she tears down their strong, colossal houses, which are less than twigs to her, then often they will build them again.  But within those barrier islands there are areas were building is not allowed, and the normal, natural systems take place smoothly, year after year.  Some bird sanctuaries thrive in these locations, and as a low impact visitor, we Humans can not only enjoy a beautiful beach, but the beauty of the flying ones as well.  Do you hear the language of birds?  Its carried on the wind....

 Sea Turtles first great challenge is to dig their way out from under the beach sand after they have hatched, and then race for the sea, guided by the moon.  Many things want to eat them on the way to their new home in the deep and blue, only one in 10,000 actually make it.  This year on the full moon of Lughnasadh I was at a turtle sanctuary were 108 of them hatched and dug their way to the surface, trying to follow the song of the sea to their new home.  All the people in their massive houses did agree to turn off their porch lights so the turtles could follow the moon to the sea and not the flood light into the dunes where ghost crabs would eat them. A veritable wall of people surrounded that nest and did all they could, in the moonlight to keep the turtles from straying off course, so they could make it to the sea.  All turtles survived and swam out to where their adventure begins.  We as Humans can also be good stewards of the plants, animals and environment. and we can protect the earth for the future as well!  We must take action, and try very hard to hear the song of nature still singing within the trees, the breeze, the ground and the air and use our knowledge to improve the future of this planet, and leave an equally beautiful place for our children, grandchildren, and the children of our friends living on the land, in the sky, and under the sea.

This week on Wheel of wonder I'll begin a series of shows focused on Climate Change, due to Human pollution and ignorance and strategies and actions that can be taken, and are even now being taken to protect the Earth and all the natural systems she is the architect of, that support and feed us so we can continue to live on this wonderful planet surrounded by awe-inspiring beauty and the hope that life continues.  Blessed Be