Friday, February 29, 2008
Thursday, February 28, 2008
Monday, February 25, 2008
Sunday Wonder and I went to the Witches' Cafe in Utrecht. He would come to Haarlem, I'd pick him up to drive to Utrecht. Things didn't exactly work out as we planned though, so eventually I drove to The Hague and then we went to Utrecht. The cafe was at a new location, but it was easy to find. The cafe was from 4pm until 9 pm, so we had dinner while we were there.
There were a lot of people I know, but I also met some others for the first time. I enjoyed myself very much. Wonder and I had a very interesting conversation with Ina Cüsters-van Bergen, Magus of the Order of the Temple of Starlight (a modern Western Mystery school). Her path is not the one I have chosen, but very interesting nevertheless. I can recommend her book De Weg naar de Oude Mysteriën (The Road to the Old Mysteries), at the moment available only in Dutch but she's working on an English translation.
We left around 9pm. Wonder drove to The Hague and then I drove home. We had a great time, so it really bears repetition!
Saturday, February 23, 2008
To Those Who Share Our Deep Concern:
Please join us in calling for the immediate pardon and release of FAWZA FALIH [Falwah Faliz], a Saudi Arabian woman who has been sentenced to death by beheading for the alleged crime of "witchcraft". As Human Rights Watch has declared, the conviction of Fawza Falih is a travesty of justice.
A letter to His Royal Highness KING ABDULLAH has been drafted and signed by clergy and members of various faith traditions. The letter may be read online where you may also sign it. Please do so as soon as possible at: Fawza Falih Petition Online
Further information on the case is available at:
- CNN Reports Saudi Witch Case
- Human Rights Watch - Saudi Arabia: Fawza Falih's Case Reveals Deep Flaws in Saudi Justice System
- The letter from Human Rights Watch to King Abdullah
- BBC News Pleas for condemned Saudi 'witch'
I'm sorry to have to ask this, but PLEASE if you are Pagan or Wiccan, we would appreciate it if you do not make reference to that because, sadly, this will only make Fawza Falih's situation worse - it is the reason, after all, that she is sentenced to beheading. And when you post to e-lists or boards, please add that request.
Please join us in signing online, and help distribute this letter to others.
Thank you for your help!
- Rev. P. W. Curott, J.D., Assembly of World Religious Leaders
- Mike Mohamed Ghouse, President, World Muslim Congress
- Rabbi Michael Lerner, Editor of Tikkun Magazine, Chair of the Network of Spiritual Progressives
- Gregory Gomez, Apache, Spiritual Leader
- Sheila Musaji, Editor, The American Muslim
- Ellen Evert Hopman M.Ed. Author
- Elliott Dlin, Executive Director, Dallas Holocaust Museum/Center for Education & Tolerance
- Dr. Sushil Jain, President, Jain Society of Metro Washington & Secretary, Federation of Jain Associations in North America.
- Ervad Ratansha Vakil - Zoroastrian Priest - Dallas, Texas, USA
- Ashok Aklujkar, Hindu Community, Professor Emeritus, Vancouver, Canada
- Rev. Dr. Rita Nakashima Brock, Director, Faith Voices for the Common Good, Visiting Scholar, Starr King School for the Ministry
- Rev. Dr. Todd A. Collier, Presbyterian Minister
- Rev. Dr. Kevin D. Huddleston, Episcopal Priest
- Rev. Darrell E. Berger, Unitarian Universalist
- Noor-ul Amin Ali Son of Jaffer Ali, Pakistan Karachi, Shia Ismaili Muslim
- Naresh R. Shah, Jain Community, Nitro, WV 25143
- Rev. S. M. Fox, President, Greater Madison Interreligious Association, Assembly of World Religious Leaders
- Marylou Ghyst, Unity Church, Texas
Friday, February 22, 2008
ARA what? ARA R.A.T., or Ara Ritual Apart Together. The Journeys Apart Together we did (like this one) are a success, so we wanted to try something a step further: doing a ritual apart in our own homes but together in the astral temple we created some time ago! We prepared everything like we usually do for a real-life ritual together.
Because of personal stuff and stress my preparation was later and less thorough than planned. To get into it more I made a lay-out of the ritual from the several mails we exchanged beforehand. I made a cosy place in my room with a stove, nice blankets, candlelight, incense I got from Sorcha, cake & wine, notebook, etc. There I prepared myself before we started. Of course I made a picture.
We all started at 9pm as planned. It was a very interesting, fascinating experience. Visualizing everyone, everything went so easy; it really was as if the others were right next to me. When we cast the circle from hand to hand I felt the circle buidling up one by one. When we passed energy it felt very powerful; my hands were very warm and tingled. In the grounding exercise I became a tree. My roots went down into the ground, where they met the roots of the other trees in the circle. Six trees, but one ball of roots in the earth, one being, one spirit. It felt wonderful.
For the shamanic journey we planned I had to come back a bit to put on the CD, but it wasn't disturbing me or interrupting really. When I made myself comfortable again I was back in the temple. We were lying in a circle. There was someone drumming for us, but I didn't see him.
The journey itself was amazing. I did the exercise we discussed before. I also discovered a wonderful place. A green spot looking out on the beach, with trees behind me and surrounded by animals. I sat down and meditated with my eyes open. I felt good, at ease. My black panther told me I can always come back to this place when I need to relax and recharge. I know I'll go back there!
I stayed for a while until I had to return to the astral temple. Everyone was waking up quietly. Then all at once everything passed by faster and faster: the cake & wine, the thanking of the elements / God and Goddess, opening the circle. Before I knew it I was back in my room. I made notes and did a real cake & wine for myself.
Monday, February 18, 2008
Yesterday Ron and I have been to Groesbeek. Our friends there asked us to become godparents to their eight-year-old son Jaimie. We were very honoured and accepted with pleasure. His parents, uncle and perhaps his brother will be baptised later in the same church (Roman catholic). In April Jaimie will do his first communion.
The ceremony was in a beautiful church in Groesbeek. It was a private mass in which some members of another family were baptised too. The pastor was a friendly man and very good with the kids. Everyone present got involved. I have lit two candles for my mum and dad in front of the statue of mary.
Afterwards there was a little party for Jaimie. He got a cake with his picture. We stayed and chatted until late. We were home around half past 11 in the evening.
Thursday, February 14, 2008
Tuesday, February 12, 2008
A lot is happening, I've been busy. The usual clichés but true nevertheless. What have I been doing...
Saturday I went shopping with Wonder in the old city centre of Utrecht. The weather was great and I love the historic character of the inner city. The canals have platforms almost on water level. The wharfs are still in use as store rooms, for little shops and restaurants. On top of the embarkment walls the main street is built with shops and houses. We lit candles for our parents in the beautiful Dom Church. I didn't buy much, just one book! Later two friends joined us. Afterwards we went home with them to Nieuwegein, where Ron joined us too.
Sunday was a difficult day. It would have been mom's 72nd birthday... So strange; you can't celebrate, but it also isn't and will never be just another day... In the evening we went out for dinner in her honour with my sister, brother and partners in restaurant De Stal (the stable) in Spaarnwoude. It's Ron's favourite restaurant, because they have very good, very big T-bone steaks. We had a wonderful time.
Yesterday we were busy, but also found time for a hike on the beach with the dogs. We walked around the inner lake on the beach. Boris went for a swim several times, he loves that. The weather was very good, almost spring: sunny and warm for the time of year. We walked for one and a half hour. I was exhausted, but still loved it!
Today is Foofur's birthday. He is 9 years old now. I bought big bones for him and Boris. I still remember meeting him for the first time, when I was at work in the pet shelter 9 years ago. It was love on first sight! Ron had to get used to a little dog, but loves him just as much now. Here's a picture of the birthday boy, made in 2003:
Thursday, February 07, 2008
Tuesday, February 05, 2008
Cats and computers are a great combination.
Well, most of the time anyway.... ;-)
I'm a big fan of cat-blogs and all kinds of cat-sites!
On a random search I've found this:
USB Kitty with two infrared sensors to help its master to alert any intruders by shaking its head and producing many different sounds. When you walk away from your computer and there is somebody want to touch your PC, it will meow, hiss and sing melodies in order to scare away the intruders.
My own cats have a love-hate relationship with my desktop and laptop. They are very interested, but hate it when I'm busy too long! Then they try everything to get me to pause and pay attention to them!
Snoopy (still dearly missed...) just jumped on my desk and occupied the keyboard!
Bastet likes to chase the cursor all around the screen!
Maia is very interested in just about anything that's on the screen!
Another nice thingy I found here:
Happy (Cats on) Tuesday!
Monday, February 04, 2008
This case got worldwide media attention for almost three years now and I followed it all that time. I just watched Peter R. de Vries' astonishing coverage in which he reveals how he got Joran van der Sloot's full confession. You can read the whole story here.
I was shocked by the way Joran told his story to a friend. He just sat there looking and acting completely indifferent. He didn't even check if she was really dead. He didn't even lose any sleep over it. He doesn't feel guilty. I don't have words for this... As Natalee's mother Beth said in the report: "I hope his living hell is about to begin."
I hope Beth and the rest of Natalee's family and friends will find a way to cope with this awful outcome. They have my deepest sympathy...