Friday, December 26, 2008

Episode #3 - Happy ho ho!

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Welcome, Fellow Travelers - it's Yule-tide - and we are happy to be with you all again for our last show of 2008. We start, as always, with Ralph Blum's "Greeting" - the way we have opened our sacred work with this poem for years and years .... Our 2nd "take" - due to the blowing up of the lightbulb in our Himalayan Salt Lamp - which made for a flurry of sparks and activity. Nothing dire - just an unexpected "sizzle" to the start of our first take. We're all fine.

We quote the late visionary Arthur C Clarke - who said "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." This is one of Clarke's Three Laws that govern the Universe.

Our quick check-in reveals that we are hyped up on hot chocolate, pumpkin pound cake and whipped cream, and that Alex got some more work done on her tattoos - see pics on our Facebook Fan Page - and we all have tattoos by Jodie Wentz of Rock Road Tattoo - the best tattoo artists anywhere for spiritual themed pagan tattoo work - in our humble opinion. Her "secular" tattoo work is also wondrous, but for we Crafty folk - she has been our first choice.

This episode is brought to you by the Rune - Isa - and we talk about the beauty of winter and the need, at this most hectic time of year, to take time to STOP - PAUSE - REST - and enjoy the moments in winter where nothing seems to be moving.

Pumpkin Pound Cake Recipe - courtesy of Jacinthe's Kitchen, and taken from
1500 Best Bars, Cookies, Muffins, Cakes, & More by Esther Brody.

3 cups all-purpose flour - ½ tsp salt -½ tsp baking powder - 1 tsp cinnamon -¼ tsp ground cloves - ½ tsp ginger -1 ½ cups butter, softened -2 ½ cups granulated sugar -1 tsp vanilla - 6 eggs -1 cup canned cooked pumpkin purée (not pie filling)

  1. Combine flour, salt, baking powder, cinnamon, cloves and ginger.
  2. In a large mixer bowl, cream butter, sugar and vanilla on medium speed until smooth. Beat in eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition, until well blended.
  3. Beat in flour mixture alternately with pumpkin, making 3 additions of flour and 2 of pumpkin, on low speed, beating only until well combined. Spoon into two prepared baking pans (greased and floured).
  4. Bake in pre-heated oven for 60 to 70 minutes (or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean and dry). Let cool the pans on a wire rack for 10 minutes – then remove to wire racks to cool completely.
Changes that I made to the original recipe: I used a mix of wholewheat, graham and unbleached flour. I thought that the graham flour would give it a nuttier flavor. I used ¾ persimmon purée and ¼ pumpkin purée – both created in my kitchen.

Best served topped by whipped cream, with a steaming mug of Hot Chocolate (also topped by whipped cream - the balm to all the season's stresses.)

We are so blessed and amazed to have so many of you listen to us. Thanks and we appreciate every download! We only keep going because you keep listening! Thanks to our Podkin for their support!

Speaking of Podkin...
Pick a Pack of Pickled Pagan Podcasts - We listen to a lot of podcasts - we compare days of stored podcasts on our computers - and wonder how many days of podcasts YOU have to listen to? What do you listen FOR in a podcast? What makes you subscribe - or unsubscribe to a podcast? What is important? What matters? Should it be edited or "live and raw"? Does sound quality matter? Music - how much is the right amount? We want to "review" a couple podcasts each episode, to introduce our listeners to other great Pagan Podcasts out there - so please go and explore these three podcasts that are our "regular listens" -
  • The Wigglian Way - Mojo and Sparrow are the Elders of the Pagan Podcast community - not that theirs is the oldest podcast, necessarily, but their generosity of spirit, their support and encouragement to their Podkin (that's us) to go out and try to do it.
  • Druidcast - Damh the Bard (Dave, for you non-Gaelic speakers) from the Order of Bards Ovates and Druids - an amazingly intelligent show that has great music (and occasional music themed show).
  • Moonshine - Tegan has the best theme music of any podcast (though Susan has a soft spot for Druidcast's "The Hills They Are Hollow" - but that is a proper song, not a "theme" per se). A great podcast with a great perspective and some "southern spice".
Sacred Poetry this episode is from Andrew Harvey, and is called "Song for the Divine Mother.

Alex leads a discussion about "
Triumph of the Moon" by Prof. Ronald Hutton - the book that our circle as been studying for the past year (or more). (new people always welcome to join the book study, by the way - if you are in the Wpg area, email us for information). This winds its way about how media has influenced our "visioning" of Craft images and then winds its way back to the book and how Wicca is a syncretic religion, whether we like it or not.

We recommend listening to Episode Four of Druidcast to hear Prof. Hutton deliver a lecture on the Horned God - hearing his speaking style and being able to enjoy his sense of wit and humor really open up "getting" Prof. Hutton's writing style. It "is" an academic text (and is printed in 6pt type) but what some people "read" as dry-ness is really a cutting sense of wit and "edge" that does not translate well to the printed page. There are several of Prof. Hutton's lectures on various Druidcast episodes - and all are well worth the listen - as is Druidcast in its own right. We also mention Prof. Hutton's "stirring and uplifting" rendition of Crowley's "Hymn to Pan" from Episode Four.

Cliff won Nano this year so his blogging has been a bit "tardy" but we are very proud of him for writing 50,000 words in 3 days! We discuss how to put the sacred back into the season. What does it mean to Pagans to put the "Sacred" back into this holiday season? What do you do? Let us know!

There will be a small token of congratulations to the first person who can correctly identify by name the newly started blog by Jacinthe. (disclaimer: members of The Magical Earth, their immediate families, and anyone that Jacinthe has personally told, are not eligible to win the prize. so there.)

We close with our own holiday wishes, and a poem submitted to us by a listener, Craig - thank you for sharing with us, and our listeners... Hope you had a "Cool Yule" and spent it exactly the way you wanted to!

Yuletide is Here

Flame ye the old Yule log, with scythe cut mistletoe
Spiral oak and ivy, holly hung head to toe

The hooves of Herne strike the crag, early in the morn
The Boar is slain for the roast, to rejoice the Sun reborn

Wassailing in our hearts and hearth to a healthy, happy home
Children gather stockings awaiting the jolly Gnome

To fill with sweets and treats delight as in the days of yore
As Fathers told the tales of old and ancient Yuletide lore

Mother sits by the fire sipping a hot mulled wine
Remembering a Winter long since past and a lad so handsome and fine.

Who kissed her once, under the sprig when she was ere a lass
As snow did blow the cold wind fro and icicles glittered like glass

So make merry ye folk who toil with yoke, come gather under the tree
and to all of ye young and old behold a bright warm Blessed Be!

(c)CraigWicce Yule 2008


Dave said...

As for your question about listening to podcasts: I usually listen for 3 main qualities in a podcast. These qualities are 1) Education - am I learning something 2) Entertainment - can I stay awake till the end of the podcast and 3) Audio Quality - can I actually understand what is being said or is it all static to me?

Personally, I post-produce podcasts. Back in our days on the radio, we used to incorporate nearly everything into real-time production. However, once the station went dark, we found that post-producing everything led to a higher audio quality.

How do I get around to listening to podcasts? Well my former 45 minute commute to and from work used to solve that problem. I did a networked drive for a while for podcasts, but now I'm horribly behind in discovering the new generation of Pagan podcasts. So back onto my lappy iTunes went :).

I'm definitely going to go and read "Triumph of the Moon" as soon as I finish the fictional work "American Gods." My local library here in Houston has a copy, yay!

I appreciate your realistic take on Wicca and somehow along the way your show seems to have that spiritual feeling to it. I can't put my finger on it, but that's okay. I love your podcast and I can't wait till next month's quadcast!

Regarding the commercialization of the end-of-year holidays, it doesn't bother me. Besides, commercialization down here in the states has now expanded as far back as Halloween. And to think, some people were freaking out when Black Friday first got started. So, to me, commercialization doesn't seem as focused on Christmas as it used to be even 10 years ago. Though with a growing Pagan population comes a growing commercialization of Yule as well, but it seems Yule still has managed to maintain its sacred nature for those who celebrate Yule itself rather than another end-of-year/dark-times holiday.

Personally, I don't see a big deal with cards - my reasoning is that it's a nice and accepted mechanism for keeping in touch with those we may not have even spoken to throughout the year for various reasons.

I agree with the obligatory gift thing. I think it's an insult if you ask someone what they want for a gift. Either get to know the person so you wont need to ask the question, or stop trying to pay-off the person to think of you nicely. But, having a coordinated day on a cultural scale where one can express appreciation for someone by buying them something you know they want but would never buy for themselves - well, I think that's a cool thing. However, it's certainly not obligatory IMHO.

Though, if you want a good laugh - the folks over at the Onion made a great satirical commentary about the reason for Halloween that reminded me so much of your commentary about people not knowing the reason for Christmas.

(No, it's not a Rick Roll)

- Dave of PCP: Pagan Centered Podcast

SunTiger said...

Love your reference to "podkin." I'll venture that word takes off faster toward popularity than "muggles" did from the Harry Potter series.

Yvonne Perry said...

Cliff won NaNoWriMo? How cool is that?

One Opinionated Woman said...

sorry to be a little tardy in replying to your comments -

the term Podkin was coined by Mojo from the Wigglian Way - and it's a great term! It is spreading through the Pagan podcast community and we want to make sure he gets the credit.

We are very proud that Cliff won Nano this year - and wish to congratulate all Nano winners everywhere. And just competing in Nano is brave and praiseworthy in its own right (write?)!

Thanks for the comments, and thanks for listening

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