Temple Newsletter #45

Welcome fellow seekers to this Yuletide edition of the weekly newsletter of Temple Of the Standing Stones. I am Cianaodh Óg, High Priest of this temple, an elder of Spirit Of the Sycamore tradition and very much just another ordinary guy trying to figure it all out. Sometimes, we have entries from the tribe here too. If you would like to have something of yours featured, please let us know!

If you missed last week’s newsletter you can still see it on our website at: Temple Newsletter #44.

Merry Yule!
Merry Yule!

Winter Solstice!

Tidings of joy and peace to you and yours in this season of so many stories and traditions passed on from generation to generation. Whatever your religious or cultural leanings you are sure to have a few favorite things which symbolize this return of the sun (or for some, the birth of a son) and ways of celebrating with your friends and family. Whether it’s the seeing a beautifully decorated tree, exchanging gifts, kissing under the mistletoe or singing songs of the season and laughing all the way. 🙂 We’ll be gathered for Yule tonight with our tribe and guests in Arlington with the burning of a Yule log and sprigs of holly as we bid farewell to the reign of the holly king and welcome the rebirth of the oak king while the days begin to grow longer following the Winter Solstice. In Druidic tradition the name of this time is “Alban Arthan”, which is Welsh for “Light of Winter”. According to a more poetic telling of the story, the name is “Alban Arthuan”, which means “Light of Arthur”. According to this tale, Arthur is represented by the Sun. In the Winter, the Sun dies and is reborn just as King Arthur is merely sleeping deep inside a mountain and will awaken when his people need him. By another story, on the longest night, in the darkest time of the year, we celebrate the return of the Divine Child, the Mabon, representing the rebirth of the Sun, who will bring warmth, light and life back to Earth again. Whatever tales are your favorite, won’t you join us in celebrating the rebirth of life and bid farewell once again to the darkness?

UPCOMING EVENTS:

TODAY! Yuletide! – Saturday, December 19th, 5PM til 10PM

Come ring in this Yule with Spirit Of the Sycamore Tradition at Cianaodh’s home in Arlington, TX. The address will be provided privately to any who request it upon RSVPing to attend. If you need any info please email templehp@templeofthestones.org. Take part in our ritual and burning of the Yule log then enjoy a fine potluck dinner. We will be doing a white elephant gift exchange with a $20 maximum value so please bring along a wrapped gift if you would like to participate in the fun and games with us. Most anything will do as there will be a couple of rounds of trading or “stealing” so everyone has an opportunity to end up with a gift they are happy with.

What to bring: (Optional)

Camping chair
Instrument For After Ritual Music and Dance
Item For Potluck Feast After Ritual
Food Donations for North Texas Food Bank or Sponsored Families In Need
Cash or Wishlist Donations for Cancer Care Services and/or Spirit Of the Sycamore Tradition

RSVP On Meetup – http://www.meetup.com/Temple-Of-the-Standing-Stones/events/227185764/

NEW EVENTS NEXT GREGORIAN YEAR!

Temple Day – Electuaries – Saturday, January 16th, 3PM til 11PM

Our temple days are days of crafts, lessons, board games, music and general communing with our tribe. Sometimes we watch a movie together, other times we play board games, sometimes we have impromptu music jam sessions, poetry reading or story telling. The point is to have an opportunity to get to know one another and build the bonds of spiritual family. Won’t you come join in with us?

This Temple Day will be held at Cianaodh’s home in Arlington, Texas. The address will be given upon request to those who plan to attend. The focal point at this Temple Day gathering will be electuaries. If you would like to participate feel free to bring some natural, raw, honey and herbs you would like to infuse your electuary with. Not sure what we’re talking about? Check out this fine article:

http://pixiespocket.com/2012/01/lets-talk-about-what-is-an-electuary.html

What to bring: (Optional)

Camping chair
Craft Items (Varies per event, feel free to inquire)
Your favorite game that you might like to share with the tribe
Instrument For Music and Dance
Item For Potluck Dinner
Cash or Wishlist Donations for Cancer Care Services and/or Spirit Of the Sycamore Tradition

RSVP on MeetUp – http://www.meetup.com/Temple-Of-the-Standing-Stones/events/227487996/

You can always check our upcoming events on the Temple Calendar at the website: http://templeofthestones.org/calendar/

If you would like to help support our efforts please consider chipping in through our Meetup Group: http://templeofthestones.org/chip-in/

May the kindred bless and keep you,

Cianaodh Óg – HP of Temple Of the Standing Stones – Arlington, Texas and an Elder of Spirit Of the Sycamore Tradition.

Temple Newsletter #44

Welcome fellow seekers to this edition of the weekly newsletter of Temple Of the Standing Stones. I am Cianaodh Óg, High Priest of this temple, an elder of Spirit Of the Sycamore tradition and very much just another ordinary guy trying to figure it all out. Sometimes, we have entries from the tribe here too. If you would like to have something of yours featured, please let us know!

If you missed last week’s newsletter you can still see it on our website at: Temple Newsletter #43.

New Oak Moon!
New Oak Moon!

A relationship with the kindred

We, of Spirit Of the Sycamore Tradition, speak often of the gods, our ancestors and spirits of nature and/or place which we collectively call The Kindred. It is a phrase which I first happened upon while studying Druidry with Ár nDraíocht Féin several years ago. I like the way they use the term because it encompasses a wide variety of ideas about who and what we may be seeking to commune with when we say a prayer, hold a ritual or do some magickal working. We all have our own ideas of what the divine may encompass but we can all pretty much tell when we have had a spiritual experience. You feel that you have connected with something beyond yourself and in that connection there is joy, calm and a sense of purpose. We may all come away from that with different ideas and interpretations of what it all means but we can all pretty much agree that we’ve had an experience. That connection is what we are seeking to achieve for ourselves and those who join us at our public rituals. It is our craft as clergy to facilitate that bridge between our realm and the realm of the kindred whether they reside within us or outside of us or both. Ritual is simply a series of steps we go through to set up sacred space, cleanse ourselves of worldly woes as we enter the space and commune with our kindred. We will be setting up sacred space tonight. Won’t you join us?

With that, I would like to share with you one of my favorite songs by Tuatha Dea which fits this concept. It’s a track called Mishiamagu. The simplest explanation for the meaning of “Mishiamagu” is that it is a Cherokee expression of thanks to the universe for allowing us to be together.

UPCOMING EVENTS:

TODAY!New Oak Moon – Saturday, December 12th, 5PM til 10PM

It is the new moon beginning the cycle we call the Oak Moon. A time to honor the majesty and power of the mighty oak tree. The Celtic meaning of the oak tree deals with symbolic themes of durability, purity and constancy. With Yule soon arriving and the winter cycle upon us, our ancestors’ durability was tested at this time to weather the cold months ahead until Spring arrives. We will have games, music and social time as well as a fine ritual to share with all. This event will be hosted at Cianaodh’s home in Arlington, Texas. Gathering in at 5PM for social time, ritual to begin at 7PM. Address will be given upon request to those who are attending.

What to bring: (Optional)

Camping chair
Instrument For After Ritual Music and Dance
Item For Potluck Feast After Ritual
Food Donations for North Texas Food Bank or Sponsored Families In Need
Cash or Wishlist Donations for Cancer Care Services and/or Spirit Of the Sycamore Tradition

RSVP On Meetup – http://www.meetup.com/Temple-Of-the-Standing-Stones/events/227067081/

Yuletide! – Saturday, December 19th, 5PM til 10PM

Come ring in this Yule with Spirit Of the Sycamore Tradition at Cianaodh’s home in Arlington, TX. The address will be provided privately to any who request it upon RSVPing to attend. If you need any info please email templehp@templeofthestones.org. Take part in our ritual and burning of the Yule log then enjoy a fine potluck dinner. We will be doing a white elephant gift exchange with a $20 maximum value so please bring along a wrapped gift if you would like to participate in the fun and games with us. Most anything will do as there will be a couple of rounds of trading or “stealing” so everyone has an opportunity to end up with a gift they are happy with.

What to bring: (Optional)

Camping chair
Instrument For After Ritual Music and Dance
Item For Potluck Feast After Ritual
Food Donations for North Texas Food Bank or Sponsored Families In Need
Cash or Wishlist Donations for Cancer Care Services and/or Spirit Of the Sycamore Tradition

RSVP On Meetup – http://www.meetup.com/Temple-Of-the-Standing-Stones/events/227185764/

NEW EVENTS NEXT GREGORIAN YEAR!

You can always check our upcoming events on the Temple Calendar at the website: http://templeofthestones.org/calendar/

If you would like to help support our efforts please consider chipping in through our Meetup Group: http://templeofthestones.org/chip-in/

May the kindred bless and keep you,

Cianaodh Óg – HP of Temple Of the Standing Stones – Arlington, Texas and an Elder of Spirit Of the Sycamore Tradition.

Temple Newsletter #43

Welcome fellow seekers to this edition of the weekly newsletter of Temple Of the Standing Stones. I am Cianaodh Óg, High Priest of this temple, an elder of Spirit Of the Sycamore tradition and very much just another ordinary guy trying to figure it all out.

If you missed last week’s newsletter you can still see it on our website at: Temple Newsletter #42.

Temple Day Crafts
Temple Day Crafts

A thousand words…

Some time ago I made a commitment to myself to try to write at least a thousand words per day for Spirit Of the Sycamore tradition as my personal contribution to our cause of building a body of materials which represents the studies, beliefs, thinking and practices of our tradition. A number of these articles reside in clergy training materials available to our initiated members, some are still awaiting review, possible editing and hopefully eventual approval to be published on the Spirit Of the Sycamore Tradition website as publicly available articles in our effort to tell people about ourselves, who we are, what we believe and how we do things. Some might become future segments here on this weekly newsletter as well. I enjoy writing about spiritual matters, history and new findings on the frontiers of science. To me, the search for the truth is a common thread that runs through all of these pursuits and truth is a very worthy quarry to seek on anyone’s quest in life I believe.

As of this past Samhain Temple Of the Standing Stones now has it’s first 2nd Degree Priestess and Priest and they have been doing an exemplary job of writing and officiating our rituals for us these past several weeks for which I am so very grateful. Not only have Wahya and Ta’li Seabhac brought a fresh, new perspective to our ritual style but, having taken the lead on these clergy duties they have afforded me the time to concentrate on doing the writing for our tradition which my position as an elder calls for.

Our sister Arachne Crowsinger, High Priestess of Mystic Willow Coven has been busy this week as well getting new pages and information up on the Spirit Of the Sycamore Tradition website at http://spiritofthesycamore.org/ including a Branches Page with contact info for our individual groups as well as both the Seekers and Teachers Bills of Rights. Soon, we will also be adding events to the calendar for the entire tradition there. So, this might be the place to check in and see if there is something going on near you. Go check it out and come check us out at one of our…

UPCOMING EVENTS:

TODAY!Temple Day – Saturday, December 5th, 3PM til 10PM

Our temple days are days of crafts, lessons, board games, music and general communing with our tribe. Sometimes we watch a movie together, other times we play board games, sometimes we have impromptu music jam sessions, poetry reading or story telling. The point is to have an opportunity to get to know one another and build the bonds of spiritual family. Won’t you come join in with us?

This Temple Day will be held at Cianaodh’s home in Arlington, Texas. The address will be given upon request to those who plan to attend. The focal point at this Temple Day gathering will be Musical Experimentation – Please Bring Instruments, Voices and/or Ideas that you would like to share or just some appreciative ears to listen, hands to clap and feet to tap or dance. 🙂

What to bring: (Optional)

Camping chair
Craft Items (Varies per event, feel free to inquire)
Your favorite game that you might like to share with the tribe
Instrument For Music and Dance
Item For Potluck Dinner
Food Donations for North Texas Food Bank or Sponsored Families In Need
Cash or Wishlist Donations for Cancer Care Services and/or Spirit Of the Sycamore Tradition

RSVP On Meetup – http://www.meetup.com/Temple-Of-the-Standing-Stones/events/226928805/

New Oak Moon – Saturday, December 12th, 5PM til 10PM

It is the new moon beginning the cycle we call the Oak Moon. A time to honor the majesty and power of the mighty oak tree. The Celtic meaning of the oak tree deals with symbolic themes of durability, purity and constancy. With Yule soon arriving and the winter cycle upon us, our ancestors’ durability was tested at this time to weather the cold months ahead until Spring arrives. We will have games, music and social time as well as a fine ritual to share with all. This event will be hosted at Cianaodh’s home in Arlington, Texas. Gathering in at 5PM for social time, ritual to begin at 7PM. Address will be given upon request to those who are attending.

What to bring: (Optional)

Camping chair
Instrument For After Ritual Music and Dance
Item For Potluck Feast After Ritual
Food Donations for North Texas Food Bank or Sponsored Families In Need
Cash or Wishlist Donations for Cancer Care Services and/or Spirit Of the Sycamore Tradition

RSVP On Meetup – http://www.meetup.com/Temple-Of-the-Standing-Stones/events/227067081/

Yuletide! – Saturday, December 19th, 5PM til 10PM

Come ring in this Yule with Spirit Of the Sycamore Tradition at Cianaodh’s home in Arlington, TX. The address will be provided privately to any who request it upon RSVPing to attend. If you need any info please email templehp@templeofthestones.org. Take part in our ritual and burning of the Yule log then enjoy a fine potluck dinner. We will be doing a white elephant gift exchange with a $20 maximum value so please bring along a wrapped gift if you would like to participate in the fun and games with us. Most anything will do as there will be a couple of rounds of trading or “stealing” so everyone has an opportunity to end up with a gift they are happy with.

What to bring: (Optional)

Camping chair
Instrument For After Ritual Music and Dance
Item For Potluck Feast After Ritual
Food Donations for North Texas Food Bank or Sponsored Families In Need
Cash or Wishlist Donations for Cancer Care Services and/or Spirit Of the Sycamore Tradition

RSVP On Meetup – http://www.meetup.com/Temple-Of-the-Standing-Stones/events/227185764/

You can always check our upcoming events on the Temple Calendar at the website: http://templeofthestones.org/calendar/

If you would like to help support our efforts please consider chipping in through our Meetup Group: http://templeofthestones.org/chip-in/

May you never know hunger; may your thirst be ever quenched,

Cianaodh Óg – HP of Temple Of the Standing Stones – Arlington, Texas and an Elder of Spirit Of the Sycamore Tradition.