La na Cailleach – Spring Equinox – Fools, Cuckoos, the Lady and the Devil – Cailleach’s Herbarium

When the light of the sun of this day shines into the inner chamber of Sliabh na Calli (The Cailleach’s mound). By solar reckoning, the year is exactly half. Half day, half night. At one exact moment, the world balanced on a pin head. Everything in equal measure, fifty-fifty, resting in perfect balance, a pause. A breath. Exhale. The cry of the cuckoo calls out. Release. We move on to the lighter times. The spring equinox La na Cailleach is here.

 

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Source: La na Cailleach – Spring Equinox – Fools, Cuckoos, the Lady and the Devil – Cailleach’s Herbarium

History Ireland

Gráinne Mhaol, pirate queen of Connacht: behind the legend

Published in Early Modern History (1500–1700)FeaturesIssue 2 (Mar/Apr 2005)Volume 13

Vilified by her English adversaries as ‘a woman who hath imprudently passed the part of womanhood’, Grace O’Malley was ignored by contemporary chroniclers in Ireland, yet her memory survived in native folklore. Nationalists later lionised her as Gráinne Mhaol, a warrior who would come over the sea with Irish soldiers to rout the English. She finally became an icon of international feminism, both as an example of a strong and independent woman and as a victim of misogynistic laws. Nevertheless, this subject of verse, music, romantic novels, documentaries and an interpretive centre remains shrouded in mystery. Gráinne Ní Máille’s mythical status is a double-edged sword that, while ensuring that her name survived, has obscured the reality of the woman behind the legend. She was an extraordinary woman who lived, loved, fought and survived during a pivotal period of Irish history that saw the collapse of the Gaelic order and the ruination of Ireland’s ruling élite.

Source: History Ireland

Professor Andrew McNeillie – ‘Theatres in the Round – Islands, Islanders, and Audiences: or backstage, stalls and gods: in the Unnameable Archipelago’. | Centre for Scottish and Celtic Studies

On the 12th of February, the Centre had the pleasure of welcoming Professor Andrew McNeillie to give the annual Tannahill lecture. Professor Gerard Carruthers introduced the event, outlining that i…

Source: Professor Andrew McNeillie – ‘Theatres in the Round – Islands, Islanders, and Audiences: or backstage, stalls and gods: in the Unnameable Archipelago’. | Centre for Scottish and Celtic Studies

The Eerie Folktales Behind Iceland’s Natural Wonders

Is Iceland magical to you? It is for a lot of others, as well! I went in 2015 and came back enchanted with the land. I set part of my book, Past Storm and Fire, in this mystical landscape.

 

Source: The Eerie Folktales Behind Iceland’s Natural Wonders

This 14th-Century African Emperor Remains the Richest Person in History – HISTORY

In Time Tourist Outfitters, Ltd., my characters, Wilda and Mattea, visit the court of Mansa Musa in their travels…

 

 

In the vast fictional universe of Marvel Comics, T’Challa, better known as Black Panther, is not only king of Wakanda, he’s also the richest superhero of them all. And although today’s fight for the title of wealthiest person alive involves a tug-of-war between billionaire CEOs, the wealthiest person in history, Mansa Musa, has more in common with Marvel’s first black superhero.

Musa became ruler of the Mali Empire in 1312, taking the throne after his predecessor, Abu-Bakr II, for whom he’d served as deputy, went missing on a voyage he took by sea to find the edge of the Atlantic Ocean. Musa’s rule came at a time when European nations were struggling due to raging civil wars and a lack of resources. During that period, the Mali Empire flourished thanks to ample natural resources like gold and salt.

 

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Source: This 14th-Century African Emperor Remains the Richest Person in History – HISTORY

Stand for Peace in Support of Indigenous People – British Druid Order Blog

Stand for Peace in Support of Indigenous PeopleIt was with some shock last night that I saw the newly emerging videos of  Nathan Philips, an Omaha elder, being mocked and taunted by a mob of teenagers in MAGA hats and clothing from Covington Catholic school in Kentucky at the end of the Indigenous People’s March in Washington DC.

Source: Stand for Peace in Support of Indigenous People – British Druid Order Blog

15 Fantasy Series to Get You Out of Your Sarah J Maas Hangover » Epic Færytales

With the Throne of Glass series wrapping up recently with the epic conclusion, Kingdom of Ash, we’re all in a bit of a book hangover. So here are 15 Fantasy series to get you out of your Maas hangover.

Source: 15 Fantasy Series to Get You Out of Your Sarah J Maas Hangover » Epic Færytales

 

 

My own Druid’s Brooch Series is part of this fantastic list (pun intended). And Patrick Rothfuss!

Solving Mass Shootings

There seems to be a sharp increase in the number of deadly mass shootings in the United States lately. Everyone is offering a solution, but no one seems to be doing anything that works.

We won’t solve this all at once or simply. Getting angry at each other over single-focus issues is counter-productive and just divides us.

It’s a multi-faceted problem and it requires a multi-faceted solution. It’s a gun access issue, a toxic male culture issue, a child discipline issue, a mental health issue. We need solutions on ALL fronts to make any process, and people need to stop saying ‘but what about this statistic? This proves it can’t be a ___ issue!’

Life is not simple and solutions to issues like this are not simple. You have to make a step in ALL directions to make a difference.

– Toxic Male Culture – the idea that, in our society, the traits of dominance, devaluation of women, extreme self-reliance, and the suppression of emotions are considered the norm. These men have no outlet for their pain and lash out with anger and violence as that is considered acceptable. It isn’t. We need to change that culture by example and education.

– Child discipline – in the noble pursuit to eliminate abuse and foster confidence, we have removed from child-rearing the idea that actions have consequences. That every child is a winner, and every child deserves everything. Then, when they grow up, they can’t understand why they don’t have all they want and deserve. They are taught no process to deal with that disappointment. We need to teach our children that failure happens and how to deal with it.

– Mental health – Our culture stigmatizes mental health issues and is pulling back on the very necessary funding for care of those issues. Anyone who is different feels they must hide their difference. This then results in an explosion of pain and anger when they can find no reasonable outlet. We need to fund our mental health and educate that it is not a stigma.

– Access to firearms – Yes, easy access to firearms is part of this issue. By requiring background checks (and enforcing them!), licensing and registration, and proving the owner has a basic knowledge on how to operate the gun (just like we do with cars), it can reduce the issues. Yes, other weapons can be used, but reducing those available will help. This would be the ‘well-regulated’ part of the second amendment. We need to pass legislation to make gun ownership a sacred responsibility.

– The craving for fame/copycat – our 24 hour news cycle has created a crop of people that decide they want to be famous, because, as they were taught as children, they deserve it. Those with no other way to become famous decide that killing others is a spectacular way, even if they go down with ‘a blaze of glory’ as part of it. We need to stop spreading the perpetrator’s name everywhere. Instead, honor the victims, not the criminal.

– Wealth inequality – There is a growing gap between our richest and poorest citizens. This results in much lower access to resources for health care, education, housing, and other basic survival necessities. It throws people into a desperation where the only way out seems to be violence. We need to fix our minimum wage to the rate of inflation, make higher education either free or affordable, increase the safety net for the poorest of our people, fix health care (my choice is a single-payer system), and increase taxes on the wealthier citizens. I would also support a shift to Fair Tax.

– Normalization of hatred – Our current leaders have made it acceptable to show blatant hatred, racism, sexism, and other bigotry. We need to make this no longer normal. This hatred creates divides in our societies, in our families, and in our country. This hatred makes people desperate for a solution. We need to punch more Nazis and rapists.