Abundant Spring: A Pagan Nature Walk

To these I will teach things that are yet unknown…

Yesterday on a perfect Saturday afternoon, a circle of acquaintances  met at Inwood Hills Park. This event was planned more than two months ago by myself and two other friends- Joanna and Peter.  It was our intention to start a Pagan Environmental Action Committee of sorts.  We want to weave together  volunteerism, knowledge, activism, and spirituality in such a way as to revive earth consciousness amongst the pagans we know.  My friend Peter was our guide to the edible plants in the park. An enthusiastic amateur, but you would never guess it from his never-ending store of knowledge.

It was a smashing success, as  you can see from these photos of the event.

I was stupid not to take notes; there was so many plants and the sun was so bright I was figured I would absorb knowledge through osmosis. But I CAN tell you what makes a mean substitute for rhubarb and what mugwort looks like!

I apologize for not having more- my uploader here in wordpress refuses to right the photos in the proper perspective.

I got excited about the prospect of doing this group because I have felt for many months that the key to what bothers me about pagan practice is that the sensuousness of pagan culture has overtaken the philosophy of it. By that I mean that pagans are often so enmeshed in creating pagan culture, ritual, and lore, that they sometimes lose sight of pagan values, morals, and theology and how to put them into practice. I think this is understandable enough the culture around us does not welcome the kind of practice we have. We are a people embedded in an “over” culture.  But this is not an issue. Our own traditions are replete with liturgists, bards, artisans, priests and priestesses, even kitchen magicians; we’ve wrought a space  “to be” for ourselves with the gifts we each have.  This is not to say that there are no activist pagans. There are many individuals, past and present, that fulfill this role- too numerous to mention. What I would like to see, however, is collective action that is “pan” pagan in outlook and urban in flavor. My hope is that  you will be moved to be a part of this experiment as it evolves into the future.

Published by Valerie Freseman

Valerie Freseman is a Unitarian Universalist minister and a 2014 graduate of Union Theological Seminary. She completed a chaplain residency at Saint Francis Hospital and Medical Center in Hartford, CT, and served as the first year-long Killam Ministerial intern at the First Unitarian Church of Cleveland. She is passionate about spinning the inter-dependent web, creating a more just world, and applying the arts to faith.  She is also becoming increasingly well-known for her sock collection.

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