Uncategorized

Full Strawberry Moon

Posted on Updated on


This month’s full moon occurs on Monday, June 17 at 4:31 a.m. EDT, but the moon will appear full the night before and after its peak to the casual observer, making for an extra special night show for Father’s Day. June’s full moon is known as the Strawberry Moon, though it has many other nicknames by different cultures.

The next full moon will be:
Monday 17 June 2019 4:30:40 am (EDT)
Moon sign: Sagittarius 25° 53’

This moon is named after the beginning of the strawberry picking season. It’s other names are Rose Moon, Hot Moon, or Hay Moon as hay is typically harvested around now.
This moon appears in the same month as the summer solstice, the longest day of the year (June 21) in which we can enjoy approximately 17 hours of daylight.

Share this!
Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Needs are Not Universal

Posted on Updated on

Although we have many needs in common, we don’t all need (or want) the same thing.
The traditional (Christian) Golden Rule: “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” often fails miserably in my experience. I have a great need for honesty, and many people feel that honesty should always be diluted with kindness and made more palatable. I find this often opens the path to vagueness that allows the listener to accept a more comfortable near-truth that doesn’t let them deal with what’s causing them problems.

click to enlarge

I’m not advocating the use of honesty as a blunt instrument to hurt others, but we shouldn’t withhold information they need to deal with ongoing problems.Alternate versions suggest treating others as they want to be treated, but that’s not necessarily better. The parenting role illustrates this difference. It’s hard work to teach children chores, ethics, and other things they need to know, harder than just doing the work yourself. But if the parent doesn’t take on that extra work, the kids will lack important skills and tools they need for later in their lives. We force them to take medicine or shots when all they know is that it’s yucky, it hurts, or it’s scary, but we know that giving in to their preferences would be wrong. On the other hand, when it’s an acquaintance rather than a dependent, we can feel that that extra effort is not our responsibility; it’s easier on us to let them continue to be ignorant.

The medicine example is also a good one to illustrate that we don’t all have the same needs. Not everyone should “Take two aspirin and call me in the morning.” It may be harder to recognize with simple emotional needs (“Get two hugs and call my office for an appointment.” … not good for the person who’s hug-phobic.) One person needs quiet, another needs stimulation. People living in some areas need well-insulated, warm houses, in other regions folks need good ventilation. We simply sometimes forget to apply this to behavior. We need to remember to always assess the situation.

You may have noticed some time when one person thinks others are speaking too loudly, so they lower their voices to demonstrate what they think more appropriate volume; meanwhile the other people raise their voices in order to suggest that more volume is needed. These two responses can create a feedback loop, becoming more and more extreme to the distress of all involved. I expect your immediate thought is “Why don’t they just ask the other people to speak louder or more quietly?”; and you’d be right. But I also bet you can also think of several reasons why those involved might not want to “tell an acquaintance or stranger what to do”. Cultural norms vary so much, it’s often really difficult to guess what someone else might consider inappropriate, and being seen as rude is not unlikely. Still, communication is key, however challenging. The position of respecting that others have a reason for the way they do things, even if you can’t imagine what it is, is a good place to start.

Not that it helps in all situation, but there’s a wonderful book called How to be a Perfect Stranger that advises how to interact with those of other faiths at weddings, funerals and other services, giving a stranger an idea of what to expect. (It looks like I should get the most recent edition.) Even if you never need most of what’s in it, it’s wonderful to be reminded that what you take for granted is not what others do.
That’s the point. The universal need may be to be respected, but the ways of showing respect may differ from culture to culture. The things we were taught when we were so young that we don’t even remember learning it may leave us feeling uncomfortable when someone else looks at the world in a different way. But we can communicate, and we can learn from each other. We may just have to have a quick conversation with our two year old self first.

You’ve got this. Breathe. Expect good things.

Share this!
Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Trying to understand and learn

Posted on Updated on

I’ve been reminded recently that Jupiter is currently close enough that you can see the moons with a pair of binoculars (if the clouds allow). Chances are I won’t get out to look up and try to spot them- my eyes are probably no longer up to it. I try to understand things with my mind these days.

I’m enchanted to read that Jupiter has 53 named moons and another 26 awaiting official names. Unsurprisingly, many are named after the many lovers of Jupiter (or Zeus): Io, Europa, Ganymede, Callisto, Leda, Metis, Pasiphae, and more. I’ve been looking at pictures of them, they are a lot more varied than I’d have expected. No matter how much I learn, the mysteries of the Universe continue to expand exponentially as I try to learn more. Our ancestors named things they saw in space after gods, and probably the same could be said of the depths of the sea, and the interior of the earth (realms of Zeus, Posidon & Hades).

When we didn’t have tools to measure them, we used Myths to try to explain natural phenomena, and now we study myth and folklore to try to understand the cultures that explained their experiences in these ways. Studying world folklore also supports the existence of much that’s “unmeasureable”.
Just about every culture has some form of ghost, some understanding of an afterlife, awareness of energy healing. Most cultures describe unseen (or rarely seen) intelligent beings who interact with us. When things happen that are so out of the ordinary an explanation is begged, humans need to understand why things didn’t work the way they usually do.

This is one of the reasons we often look at history, myth and religion in CTCW. Those who came before us may not have had our technology, but they were just as intelligent, just as observant as we are. We cannot dismiss, as some do, that they must have been “stupid” to accept events which have been labeled impossible today, simply because we cannot explain them with current science (which changes constantly!).

A true scientist accepts the evidence before him, and doesn’t attempt to discard any that doesn’t agree with his premise. So when associates mock our interest in the supernatural, paranormal, occult and metaphysical, we should not let it bother us, because we are being better scientists. (Unless we go around accepting every story that’s been blown out of proportion or generated to grab attention. But I’ll probably write about that another time.)

Share this!
Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Panel Proposal forms are up!

Posted on Updated on

If the workshops are the muscles of the conference, the panels are the bones (and the attendees the lifes-blood). One of the goals of CTCW is to get people to discuss the many different approaches to the supernatural and paranormal that we’ve learned, to compare, and learn from each other. We pick panels that are meant to put forward topics that can be looked at in different ways: shamanism, symbolism, healing, ghosts, divination, magick, psychic abilities. We pick panelists who will probably approach the topic from different points of view, and different experiences.

Please feel free to suggest any topic you’d like to hear explored, whether you want to participate in the panel or just listen. But you don’t need to be an expert on a topic to be on a panel, your experience makes you an expert on what you’ve seen. Perhaps you don’t know enough to do a workshop, but each panelist will probably only get about 10 minutes of speaking time, so this might be a great way for you to “get your toes wet” as it were, and share what you know “a little” about. It still may be something other people didn’t know about and will help them understand the overall subject.

Or you may simply want to hear about a subject from several points of view. Let us know- if four people are interested, you’ll get to hear at least four points of view (maybe more).

Share this!
Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Creating our own needs

Posted on Updated on

There are a lot of people who seem to think that when you’ve acquired a need by doing something, it shouldn’t be given the same respect as needs that happen to everyone. A lot of people need coffee in the morning. Maybe they weren’t born needing coffee, but when your body is used to it, and suddenly you don’t get it, the effects are there, and it’s best to deal with that need. Did you know that something similar happens when you take a lot of vitamin C? Your body gets used to, and requires a higher level than folks who don’t supplement. They can get scurvy if they stop suddenly.
You may have heard people talking about various self soothing behaviors as being “a crutch”, like it’s a bad thing. Crutches are wonderful for those who need them, and we shouldn’t accept using the term as if most the time people use them it was unnecessary. Our culture has too many habits of disparaging the needs of others.

We can create needs in a positive way- falling in love creates a need to be with the other person, we can feel a need to be with our child, especially when post-partum hormones are swirling through our systems. I have a theory that some sort of hormonal change during menopause makes aging women want to care for babies. (Perhaps that insures the survival of the species when the demands on a young mother is too great?) These are normal, if not universal, and do come with choices we’ve made. So lighten up on both yourself and those around you. If someone is better off with the something (or someone) in their life, it’s a good thing to meet that need, just as if it were air or water. When you figure out what your “invisible” needs are, your life will be so much better, and that will make the lives of those around you better too.

Share this!
Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail