Changing of Season: Mabon

Mabon is the season in which the harvest is being gathered. It's also the time in which the hunt often begins -- deer and other animals are killed during the autumn in many parts of the world. The autumn equinox, or Mabon, takes place on or near September 21, and its spring counterpart falls around March 21. If you're in the Northern hemisphere, the days will begin getting shorter after the autumn equinox and the nights will grow longer—in the Southern hemisphere, the reverse is true. The idea of a harvest festival is nothing new. In fact, people have celebrated it for millennia, all around the world. In ancient Greece, Oschophoria was a festival held in the fall to celebrate the harvesting of grapes for wine. In the 1700's, the Bavarians came up with Oktoberfest, which actually begins in the last week of September, and it was a time of great feasting and merriment, still in existence today.
Popular Gods and Goddesses of Agriculture
Demeter: Greek Goddess of Agriculture, t…

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Dragons - Divine Beings

Dragons are probably the single most important mythical creatures in Chinese culture. They appear in multiple national celebrations, Chinese idioms (known as Chengyu), as well as being part of the Chinese zodiac. They adorn multiple buildings and doors as carvings, are weaved into fabrics for traditional Chinese clothes, and are painted in murals and used in dances to this day. Unlike their Western or European counterparts, Chinese dragons are loved and worshiped. Chinese people consider themselves to be descended from the dragon. It is the symbol of emperors and imperial rule, and its legends have shaped a good portion of modern Chinese culture.
In Eastern culture the dragon started out as an elongated, almost serpentine creature, usually, but not always showing four shortened legs, and a spaded tail. They were covered in scales, had a crest on the head, and were brightly colored in many hues. The dragon is a positive force, and represents power, excellence, and striving for goals, …

Fury of the Dragon

I had an epiphany last week on a topic for the hottest part of the Season (blame climate change). The topic is the dragon or rather the western depiction of dragon. The Western Dragon is the better known in Western culture and the other version especially the Chinese dragons deserve their own post. So let's explore the dragon and some of its history.

What is a Dragon? Dragons are usually thought to have wings and breathe fire. They also are said to have scales and claws. Some also have horns. Almost always they are said to be venomous. Some dragons may have two or more heads. They may also have more than one tail. They may have two, four or even more legs; however, most are known to have four legs. Dragons are said to eat things such as rats, birds, snakes, bats, or even humans, especially children.
Dragons are very intelligent creatures. They live in remote areas, far away from humans, in places that are dark, damp and secluded, such as caves. Dragons were first thought of as cr…

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Happy Fourth of July

The Declaration of Independence was a justification for a revolt against the British which included a list of charges against the British king. The Fourth of July commemorates the adoption of the Declaration of Independence. It was initially adopted by Congress on July 2, 1776, but then it was revised, and the final version was adopted two days later.
The Declaration of Independence was signed by 56 men representing the 13 colonies. The moment marked the beginning of all-out war against the British. The American Revolutionary War is said to have started in 1775, however. The Declaration was signed more than two years after Boston officials refused to return three shiploads of taxed tea to Britain, fueling colonists to dump the tea into the harbor in what became the infamous Boston Tea Party.
Several countries have used the Declaration of Independence as a beacon in their own struggles for freedom. These countries include France, Greece, Poland, Russia, and many countries in South Ame…

The Wane of the Sun: Apep

We are all too happy to talk about Apep (probably closer to Apapi in ancient Egyptian), also known in Greek circles as Apophis, the dread serpent of darkness and primordial chaos who lurks in the unfathomable depths of the shadow world of Duat.
Apep - often called "the Apep" in Egyptian texts, to distinguish it from lesser serpents that might be considered its offspring or representatives - is an enormous snake that lurks in the darkness of Duat, sometimes said to lie coiled around the fabled Mount Bakhu, at others believed to lie in the fathomless dark waters of the primordial Nun, the only place infinite enough to contain its endless bulk. According to the Pyramid Texts, Ra, the sun god, travels through Duat each night, dying when the sun sets but resurrecting himself at the dawn to allow the sun to be reborn the next day, but Apep lies in wait there to try to stop him, appearing in the dark underworld skies with hordes of evil minions and lesser serpents.
What exactly Ap…