Nature’s Path — Columns by Liz Fisher

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From January, 2015 to February 2018 Liz wrote a monthly column for Nature’s Path which was part of PATHEOS, the premier on-line destination to engage in the global dialogue about religion and spirituality. Below are all of the columns.  Each column weaves spiritual perspectives with pressing contemporary issues. Profusely illustrated and easy to read. Click on titles to access.

MOST RECENT:

Year of the Persistent Dog February, 2018 This is an Earth Dog Year in the Chinese Horoscope. Here are a few tidbits I have picked up from commentators. During this Dog year there will be opportunities for sound advice and justice as well as efficient and constructive thinking. Persistence and holding to a set of values that appreciates diversity are supported. See some breautiful images that illustrate the depth and breath of upcoming times.
Ancient (Egalitarian) Societies, Modern (Women’s) Marches – January 24 2018 Currently, DNA evidence reaffirming aspects of the research of Prof. Gimbutas invites us to revisit ancient woman-honoring societies. This coincides with the resurgence of the Women’s Movement. Both of these promote action to reclaim the sacred nature of all creation and women’s right to fully participate in all areas of social life.
The following columns are grouped by predominant theme. The date they were written relates to an important event that occurred that still carries wide-reaching impact.

MY VIEWPOINT

Why I am Still a UU Pagan – August 2015  UU Principles, symbols, and appreciation for the Oversoul.

Labors of Love – August, 2016  Review of the wisdom of this famous story made into a Netflix animated movie. The spiritual underpinnings of Labor Day as woven in, complete with lush drawings from the movie.

April’s Fool – April 2016  Consider the fearless fool, the rainbow, humor and the benefit of finding joy in times of trial and strife.

Amaterasu Emerges – January 2, 2017  New Year is when we make resolutions and visualize what we want to accomplish during the upcoming twelve months. This year, 2017  carries an underlying feeling of foreboding. The changes in the power structure of the government in the United States have made many of us feel apprehensive. The story of Amaterasu, the Goddess of the Sun in Shinto, can provide insights about how to proceed. when to withdraw and when to emerge.

FOUR ELEMENTS — THEIR MEANING AND IMPORTANCE

This series ties the qualities of each element with important emotional and justice perspecitves.

Celebrating Water – March 22, 2017 Today is World Water Day. The spiritual qualities of water and effective efforts to conserve are included. Protesting the construction of the Dakota Pipeline to protect this sacred element is reviewed.

Celebrating Earth – April 20, 2017 The origins of Earth Day, Environmentalism as a value, gorgeous photos of wildflowers, a report on the Climate Change marches and the Sacred qualities of the elements Earth are  woven together.

Celebrating Fire – June 19, 2017  Summer Solstice, the Goddess of the Volcano Pele–lore and stunning artistic renderings of Her–and the sacred meaning of fire are blended together.

Celebrating Air – July 7, 2017 Music and Singing, Communication and Perception are all linked to the element Air.  Find wonderful examples of each. Also, the sacred nature of Environmental protection and Updates on  the Clean Air act.

Winter Solstice Gifts: Pentacles and Galaxies – December 18, 2017  This column tells how the elements and Spirit form the five pointed star.

SEASONAL CELEBRATIONS, IMPLICATIONS

Brigid and the Chinese Dragon – February 2016  Honoring the pagan traditions of both the East and the West increases multicultural appreciation. A word about correcting past injustices to Chinese in U. S.

Eclipses, Spring Equinox and Ocean Tides – March 2016  This March 26, 2016 Lunar eclipses is significant. It relates to many goddesses. Meet them and savor their power. How eclipses effect the ties and the changing gender of the moon receive attention here.

Beltane, Maypoles and Labyrinths – May 2016 Learn about the 7-circuit Cretan Labyrinth is a very useful tool for re-calibrating our viewpoint.  Here it is tied into the Maypole, the Crane Dance and more. What lessons for the year do these teach? Truly celebratory art and important sources which tell more about this key holiday.

Summer Solstice: Season of Passion – July 2015   Meet Sekhmet, reflect on the massacre of African Americans in a Church, learn about the book and radio show Voices of the Sacred Feminine. Themes: bridging divides, finding voice.

Lughnasa At the Crossroads – August 2016   The sacred wheel and the timelessness of ancient traditions, Divine Feminine Deity with the timely events of today are connected. The foci: the time of the first harvest, the political trends in the presidential election and reviews of stunning resources .

Bringing Back the Dead –  November, 2015  A unique celebration on surfboards on the ocean, celebrating our ancestors while empowering women and girls. A special tribute to Lucile Longview, one of the key foremothers of the UU Women and Religion Movement.

Time-in-Between – December 2016  This time-in-between (between Samhain and Solstice) is ideal for gathering the power of our reflections on the year that is about to end, as well as shed light on the future. Remember the dark is an intuitive and introspective stretch when we place down our roots for coming growth. The power of the ancestors is still strong while we are also preparing for the commencing six-month cycle when the light will be increasing again.

Joy: The Persistent Ally (Betty Soskin) – December 2015  Introducing Betty Soskin, an African American UU, 94 yrs. old and a Park Ranger cultural educator with slave ancestry she is invited to introduce Pres. Obama at the National tree lighting ceremony, December 3, 2015.

Winter Solstice Gifts: Pentacles and Galaxies – December 18, 2017   Learn about the mystical Pentagram of Pearl and the enchantment of galaxies as well as Martin Luther King’s ecological views.

Year of the Rooster Crowing and Phoenix Rising – February, 2017  Chinese New Year is an important turning point in the Asian world and is celebrated wherever there is a Chinese American population. Living on the West Coast for over forty years, I have been a fan of this holiday and gave valuable insight for the coming year from the lore that is highlighted in these celebrations.

ENVIRONMENTAL

Oceans Are For Everybody – June 2016  Learn about World Ocean Day, the vital role that oceans play in our lives  and efforts to save thes sacred resources.

A Pagan Community Statement on the Environment – June 2015  Eye witness account of Nepal earthquake; Groundbreaking statement – CUUPS signs with others.

Declaration of Interdependence – July 2016  Learn about the variety and importance of our National Parks and how you can access their beauty by visiting in person or virtually.

Whale Song – September 2015  National Marine Sanctuary shows ecological restoration can work; artists and movie makers who honor whales are introduced.

SOCIAL JUSTICE ISSUES

Multicultural Maypole in Baltimore – May 2015   Response to murder by police of unarmed youth.

Healing the Traumas of War – January 2016  UUs learn from Lakota Indians; ceremonial ride to commemorate the 125th anniversary of massacre at Wounded Knee on December 29, 2015

Father Serra Not A Saint – April 2015  Supports Native Americans who reject sainthood.

Who Is Pandora? – October 2015  Recasting myths and defending women’s rights to control her body.

Art of Peacemaking — October 2016 Celebrating Peace worldwide and locally keeps the vision alive; includes an inspiring example and suggestions for actions

Gifts Goddesses Offer – November 2016  A vast array of female divinities and spiritual guides is now drawing far reaching interest inspire courageous actions, shift expectations, open our hearts, and stimulate social justice actions. Here is a brief sampling of what they have to offer.

SPIRITUAL PERSPECTIVE

Eclipses, American Character and Improvisation – August 21, 2017  Multiculturalism shapes the American Character. in this column,  the concept of “Sacred and Secular are One” and the importance of improvisation as demonstrated in African American quilts is explored. This topic was the focus of one of the Rise Up & Call Her Name sessions.

Aren’t We All Dreamers? – September 18, 2017  What do hurricanes, the oceans, and sand castles/sculptures have in common with Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program recipients?  This column, which honor the Autumn Equinox when the length of the days and nights are equal, explores finding balance,  an important practice to society as well as to individuals.  The indigenous concept of Seed Corn is also revisited, a seasonal activity that has something to teach us about appreciating the power of dreaming and the worth of these young people.

Creating Wild and Urban Sanctuaries – October 2017  Weaving together the holidays of Samhain and the Day of the Dead with the contemporary issues of how we provided places of peace and protection to both humans and all other beings is the focus of this column’s exploration.

Lighthouse Lessons in Gratitude – November 2017   In earth-centered spirituality we seek balance but also acknowledge the power and worth of changes. By valuing the beauty and support in difficult event, we grow into more adaptability, gaining the power to synthesize the wisdom life gives us.

Inaccurate observations of “the Dark” feed racism, sexism; have negative psychological impact and social ramifications.  This series deals with various aspects of recasting the Dark.

The Dark, Part 1 – January 2015

The Dark, Part 2 – February 2015

The Dark, Part 3 – March 2015

 

 

 

 

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