The beautiful poetry of the Maori/Polynesian Star Compass - Atea a Rangi

Atea a Rangi: Star Maps of the Maori and Pacific Peoples

In the past, I've written about Maori sea navigation by the stars and the legend of Matariki. Although nothing prepared me for the utterly beautiful Maori star compass which has been carved and placed on a remote and wild beach in the Hawkes Bay, between Hastings and Napier. The Star Compass - Atea a Rangi…

Moondog: The enigmatic jazz wizard of post-war NYC

Moondog: The enigmatic jazz wizard of post-war NYC

I came across Moon dog on one of those long and meandering trips through obscure music on YouTube. He was a true innovator and an avante-garde enigma. For one he looked like Gandalf or Hagrid. Aside from that he invented several new muscial instruments including a small triangular instrument he called the Ooo and another…

Medieval Icelandic Sagas: Tales of Blood Feuds, Dangerous Women and Warriors http://wp.me/p41CQf-Iu9

Beltane of the Southern Hemisphere

Today, in the Pagan calendar, the north celebrate the coming of winter at Samhainn. And all the while the sun is peaking up from behind the lush vernal trees and dancing for us once more in the southern hemisphere, as we welcome Beltane on October 31st. Or as I like to refer to it Beltane…

Travel: Hiking in Ireland Copyright Content Catnip 2010

Travel: Hiking in Ireland

When I was in Glenadough, Ireland the land spoke volumes to me. It felt and it indeed was ancient. The Irish people exist in comfortable relation to it, and appreciate its melodic shifts and seasons, as they have done for thousands of years. There are vast tracts of low-lying suburbs around Dublin. It's almost always…

Exploring early mediaeval churches in Eirann

Travel:Exploring early mediaeval churches in Eirann

I visited this crumbling relic, the largest and oldest remaining church in the Irish village of Glendalough in 2009. It was one of the largest known early Christian churches in Ireland. The church was originally dedicated to Saint Peter and Saint Paul but ceased to be a cathedral in 1214. The large rectangular stones at…

Every Picture Tells A Story: The Horoscope of Prince Iskandar (1411)

Art: The Horoscope of Prince Iskandar (1411)

A sublime Persian horoscope crafted from lapis lazuli and gold leaf by hand for Prince Iskandar. The Prince was named after Alexander the Great and was the grandson of Tamerlane, the Turkman Mongol conqueror. This horoscope shows the positions of the stars and planets in the sky at the moment of Iskandar’s birth on 25th…

Every Picture Tells A Story: by Maori Goddess Taranga by Robyn Kahukiwa

Every Picture Tells A Story: by Maori Goddess Taranga by Robyn Kahukiwa

In Maori legend, Taranga is the mother of the god Maui and her husband is named Makeatutura. When Maui is born prematurely, Taranga wraps his body in her hair and throws him into the waves. In the ensuing years, sea-creatures care for Maui, hiding him in the sea coral and kelp until one day following a…

Tane Mahuta's Triumph

Every Picture Tells A Story: Tane Mahuta’s Triumph by Jane Crisp

In the beginning there was no sky, no sea no earth and no Gods. There was only darkness, only Te Kore, the Nothingness. From this nothingness, the primal parents of the Maori came, Papatuanuku, the Earth mother, and Ranginui, the Sky father. Papatuanuku and Ranginui came together,embracing in the darkness, and had 70 male children. These…

Seawalls: Artists for Oceans in Quirky Napier, New Zealand

Seawalls: Artists for Oceans in Quirky Napier, New Zealand

On a recent cycling trip to Napier, the Polish Bear and I were astonished to find the most amazing street art in the side alleys, shop fronts and carpark walls. Art Deco Napier is a place full of surprises. Seawalls Napier: Bringing the oceans to the streets Sea Walls: Murals for Oceans is a groundbreaking…

<3 The Internet: Solistice Streets makes pagan worship easy

Solistice Streets is a web-based app that's the brainchild of some pagan programmers who wanted to make it easier to worship the seasons and the summer solistice (21st of December) and winter solistice (20th June). In particular they wanted to create an online place for collective worship in honour of Stonehenge. A place where on…

Every Picture Tells a Story: Winter’s sudden contemplation

When the night scented stock come in And all of the dusk reigns around us A musky smoke Of burning leaves and wet rocks All is cosy, locked in and battened down A sleepy knowingness seeps in A season and reason for movement is over And the winter sits down long and low Her frosty embrace -…

Emerging genius: Wolf People - Ninth Night (2016)

Emerging genius: Wolf People – Ninth Night (2016)

Over the coming weeks I will share an eclectic lucky dip of music that I discovered and loved via subreddit /r/listentothis, Here is no.8 on the jukebox, from the English prog/pagan rock band Wolf People it's the single Ninth Night from the new album Ruin.   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eafkYEXJKg4 Pagan witchy rock from the woodlands, riverbanks and…

Every Picture Tells A Story: The magic of Matariki and Māori winter sea navigation

The magic of Matariki and Māori winter sea navigation

Matariki is the Māori name for the cluster of stars also known as the Pleiades. In Aotearoa Matariki rises in mid-winter–late May or early June.  It traditionally heralds winter solistice in New Zealand or the Māori new year. Matariki translates to the ‘eyes of god’ (mata ariki) or ‘little eyes’ (mata riki). According to myth,…

The magic of Matariki and Māori winter sea navigation

The Māori and Matariki

Matariki is the Māori name for the cluster of stars also known as the Pleiades. In Aotearoa Matariki rises in mid-winter–late May or early June.  It traditionally heralds winter solistice in New Zealand or the Māori new year. Matariki translates to the ‘eyes of god’ (mata ariki) or ‘little eyes’ (mata riki). According to myth,…

Baby, You Were Born To Run

Baby, You Were Born To Run: Horses From Cave Art to Melbourne Cup

Horses throughout history have been alternately our beloved beasts of burden and our companions. They have served a purely utilitarian purpose for farming, transport and food. They have been our artistic and spiritual inspiration. Horses have been symbolic, spiritual animals. The raw corporeal power and keen sensitive, sharp witted demeanor of horses have made them…

Historic Jukebox: Sigur Rós Óðin’s Raven Magic & Viking Epics

Be transported to a different time. With these floating, untethered words and music that I've curated or stumbled upon accidentally. In any case they are evocative and inspire deep escapism and magical voyages into the history of the world. Enjoy! There will be more Historic Jukebox to come! Instructions 1. Play Video. 2. Read Text.…