The Truthful Bounty of Cerridwen’s Cauldron

by Carolyn Lee Boyd

CauldronSummer is the season of truth. In New England, summer always begins when the sun melts the layer of snow that has given the illusion of our world as a unified and peaceful white landscape, revealing the artifacts of daily life dropped and covered over by each successive storm. The chocolate muffin that fell out of my pocket on the way to work, homework, make-up, keys and more all return and must be disposed of or reintegrated into our lives.

As I putter in my garden, pieces of 19th century broken dishes and bottles constantly rise and make their way into the top layer of shifting soil. These objects had been tossed out the back door by six generations of former occupants and are now coming back as reminders that our ecological misdeeds will always be found out. Beyond these seasonal metaphors for revelation, in summer many of us are outside and with others much of the time. We can see and be seen in the clear light of day for all we do and all we are. And so, I think summer is the perfect time to contemplate Cerridwen’s cauldron.  Continue reading "The Truthful Bounty of Cerridwen’s Cauldron"

Nevern: Sacred site of Ceridwen

by Becky Thomas

Nevern ChurchIn the little Pembrokeshire village of Nevern you will find a small church which was founded by Brynach, who is identified as a 6th century Welsh saint originating from Ireland. However as in the story of many saints, in Brynach’s tale there are hints of a much older history. Perhaps Brynach was a hero figure or even a God of our Pagan Welsh ancestors.

The true story of Brynach may be lost but there are hints of his origin to be found if you look for it. There is a brief mention in the Trioedd Ynys Prydein, “"Triads of the Island of Britain" of Brynach Wyddel (translated as Brynach the Irishman), of Dinas Affaraon who was given the gift of a wolf by Henwen the sow of Dallweir Dallpen though sadly the rest of this tale has been lost.  However, even in the Christian telling of the life of Saint Brynach there are clear indications that he may have been something other than a mortal man for it tells of Brynach, the man who tamed beasts and who was master of two magical stags, a cow which produced a limitless supply of milk and a tame wolf.

Continue reading "Nevern: Sacred site of Ceridwen"

Grieving with the Goddess

by Sheila Rose Bright

grievingWhen we are mourning the recent loss of a beloved person, animal, object or situation, we often feel like hell.  Frequently we feel that life isn’t worth living any more, that there is no point to life, that we’d rather die, that we’ll never stop feeling as miserable as we currently do, and that we’ll never get over the loss or feel happy again.

Been there?  I have, many times.  We almost all will, some of us many times, before we come to be the one to die, the one who is lost and grieved rather than the one who is left and grieving.  The Goddess cannot take this pain away from us.  Believing in her will not save us from going through our own excruciating grief.  She will not even take the sharp edge off it.  She neither can nor should rescue us from our grieving, because it is our healing process.  To be human is to feel loss and grief.  But she can make an enormous difference to how we get through it, if we ask for her help.

Continue reading "Grieving with the Goddess"