Storms Don’t Give a Shit, but People Should

Before Haiyan/Yolanda decided to gate crash what would have been a gentle exit from the monsoon season, I had been planning to write about a tonne of other things:

Don’t worry(?), I’m still going to write about these things (Gods help me), but they’ll each have to wait a little longer until things get better around here.

Viviane CrowleyPeter Dybing, and The Wild Hunt were able to cover the issue and I’m really thankful that they did. I’m sure the whole world knows about it already, but getting the information across the greater Pagan community is a great help. (Interestingly, if it weren’t for Viviane and Jason, I would never had known of Pagan Federation International Philippines. My world just got a little smaller.)

If you know or are one of the brave men and women who have flown from overseas to come and help, please note that the devastation and desperation extends beyond Tacloban City:

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All the help that’s been pouring in from around the world has been most uplifting–and we couldn’t thank you enough–but there’s still a lot of work to be done. If you’re in the position to help, please consider donating any amount to any of the humanitarian organisations you trust. Did you know that $5 can buy 16 pounds of rice or 10 cans of sardines or 21 litres of water? Don’t think any amount is too little.

May the spirits of the earth and our ancestors get us through and take us forward.

Dancing for the Dead, Living, and Lost

Our ancestors knew well that dancing was a potent form of communion between worlds and the beings that lived in each of them. They danced within their tribes and city-states, danced with people of other countries, danced like wild beasts, danced to mark the passing of seasons, and danced to commune with the various spirits of nature and civilisation. Not much has changed since the first human being danced as the art continues to be a huge, meaningful part of human expression, no matter what belief or way of life. For almost every emotion known to Mankind, there has been a dance trying to express it. Is a dance religious or secular? Who knows and who cares…

It’s 17:00 GMT+8 and in the next hour I’ll be preparing for a dance cum ritual for the Dead, Living, and Lost at our household shrine. My babaylan-friend in Bacolod tells me that they’re going to do something similar at exactly 18:00 today, so I thought I’d have mine at the same time, too. It will be a dance of grief, of joy, of hope, and many other things.

If you appreciate this gesture, please consider sending aid to our brothers and sisters in the affected areas or let others know how:

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Again my prayer continues to be, “May the Dead find their peace, the Living their joy, and the Lost their way back home”. Now, let’s get our arses working.

After Haiyan/Yolanda

I’m holding off other issues on this blog for this.

May the Dead find their peace, the Living their joy, and the Lost their way back home.

Blog Title Goes Here Right?

By now, I’m sure the whole world knows what hit the Philippines last week: just one of the craziest typhoons in recorded history.

It’s heartwarming to receive messages of concern from friends abroad, and I’m thankful(?) that my hometown was hardly hit. Sadly, other parts of the country weren’t so “lucky”. (And that’s all that’s saved us, really–geography–not divine providence.) Over 10,000 people are feared to be dead or missing. We get hit by typhoons every year, but not like this. It’s feared to get worse as the effects of climate change increase, but that’s a discussion for another day.

It’s so heartbreaking that I’m still at a loss for words. I can’t even describe my own grief. (Despite this, others are being total morons.)

I’m leaving this space in memory of all who perished, their mourning kinsmen, and the countless others still missing. The human spirit is…

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