Category Archives: Society

Teaser- Olympic issue of Gaian Times eco-magazine

Teaser- Olympic issue of Gaian Times eco-magazine

Here’s a teaser cover of the August issue of Gaian Times- features articles include `Promethian Legacy: The Olympian God who brought fire to mankind; Paganism in the 25th Century; Disability-Bionics & Paganism…and more!

Cover features Promethius bringing the secret of fire and giving it to Gaia, and about to suffer the wrath of Zeus.

Out on 4th August 2012.
-Mani

Midsummer & Stonehenge Conflicts

The Sun’s entered the zodiac sign of Cancer..  11.09pm GM on 20th June..  which is 00:09 hrs on 21st June (British Summer Time).

Happy Solstice wishes to all.

These pictures were taken last year, when I went to Stonehenge for Summer Solstice, with my wife April and close pal Marcus. What struck us was the sheer amount of rubbish people were throwing about..  which came to light..once  the mass of crowds had greeted the Sun!

At the entrance, more or less each person is given a bin bag. And yet, out of the 20,000 or more people who turn up, probably about a handful of them actually keep the place tidy, and put rubbish in bin bags.  For our part, April, Marcus & I went around picking rubbish and filling almost 20+ bags, along with the `hired help’ who were also beginning to tidy up after Sun-rise.

Beer cans, bits of food, crisp bags, cigarette buts, plastic bags, glass bottles, clothing items..gooey stuff…you name it..it was all there!  How utterly disgusting!!  We had no gloves, yet were doing our best.

What’s mind boggling is, for 363 of the days of the year, English Heritage keeps the stones off-limits to all people, except those who pay hundreds to hire it in the early hours or late hours – before or after tourist times- for small group personal ceremonies.  No fires, incense, candles…not even flowers are allowed – lest they hard and erode the stones…in those private hires.  Yet, at Summer and Winter Solstices, thousands of people turn up and totally and utterly ABUSE the stones..  from sanding on top to throwing disgusting and dangerous rubbish. And the rest of us – who hold Stonehenge sacred – just have to watch in horror and despair.

Free access to he stones is something people fight for – `It’s our right’ many say. But the English Heritage is trying to protect a `world heritage site’- that is thousands of years old. They oblige the campaigns of pressure groups, Druids, pagans and New Agers – and open it up in a limited basis. And thousands abuse and destroy the stones in that shot window.

I recall, few years ago, when I first saw the horror of the rubbish, and ill-treatment of the place, that I went around the 4 Quarters, and did a `banishing & closing’ energy work. I actually wanted Stonehenge to be closed for public. But the following year, I felt the errors of my despaired and angered emotions, and did a grounding (not that in between anything changed).  I am now just neutral.  Yes, the Stones have been here for thousands of years, and yes hey were sacred and people did magical and spiritual works there..  but perhaps they have had their time…and now Stonehenge wants to truly fall apart, rot and be gone – and so the stones have brought about this  themselves?   Yeah, I know…funny way of looking at it..   – The Stones want to commit Euthanasia.

I’ve been lucky – I’ve been to Stonehenge on a few private early morning gatherings – a wiccan coven ritual, a handfasting.. and so on. And I”ve been to the mass gatherings of winter solstice and a few summer solstices too.

Sometimes we can’t deal with impending loss – of elderly grandparents about to die, or sacred trees slowly dying, or stone circles – that are being ll treated and will fall very soon.. And when we feel that way, sometimes, we cut ourselves off those things that are dear to our hearts – it’s a way of self-preservation …for us!  

And maybe I am going through that now..for the Stonehenge.

My best memory of it-  in the middle of clearing all that rubbish, right in the midst of trampling  drunken abusive condescending crowds, I saw a small bunny rabbit hiding right under the central (fallen) altar stone. I smiled, wished it well and safety..and went on. I know it would have stayed safe, and would have come out, once all the 20,000 of us have left!

Those stones will fall..and become rubble, dust to dust, and grass and bushes and moss will grow..  Nature will win!

Bright Summer Solstice wishes

-Mani

Ruby Summer Lee – a star is born!

Here’s Ruby Summer Lee.. the Gaian Times mascot.. who was named on 22nd April 2012.. EARTH DAY 🙂

Her own blog is at www.RubySummerLee.wordpress.com

Beltane Fire Festival in Edinburgh

Hi all, I just finished editing this video…of the clips filmed at last year’s Beltane Festival in Edinburgh. – warning> It has nudity in it. Don’t look if you get offended by such things.
That said,..
Beltane is one of the 8 festivals celebrated by Pagans. It is also a fertility festival, where many pagan couples get married.

Visit www.GaianTimes.com, and opt-in to get more videos as we make them! Gaian Times Magazine explores the science & Magic of the earth, and features thought-provoking articles in science, psychology, ecology, environment, astrology and social trends. It is a not-for-profit company registered in England & Wales. No: 07515903.

Beltane Fire festival in Edinburgh takes place on the 30th April of each year, organised by Beltane Fire Society (registered charity in Scotland). Visit their website http://www.beltane.org for details. In 2012, they celebrate 25 yrs of running this festival.

-Mani

Song for this Land (Earth Day 2012) – it will make you tearful!

This one made my sister & my wife both tearful! Yes, it was quite emotive – the song, coupled with the landscape pictures of trees, water..industry, and fallen trees!

The song used here was recorded at Occupy London Camp on 13th Nov’11, and pulls at the heart-strings of anyone even remotely concerned about the state of the Earth and eco-disasters we are facing!

Photos (mostly of UK) are merely an accompaniment for you to experience the Song!
Ps. If you know the lady who guided us all to sing this song on that Remembrance Sunday night outside St.Paul’s Cathedral, please let me know, or let her know – that many of us cherish that night and her contribution. We’d love to have an interview with her on our next issue of Gaian Times. contact via  editor@gaiantimes.com  Thanks. And enjoy Earth Day (22nd April’12).

For more Earth related features, visit Gaian Times eco-magazine (Opt-in to read free magazine quarterly!)

-Mani

Mars-Venus factor analysis for Valentine’s Day

Well, 14th of February..  Valentine’s Day, right?   How many singles are feeling lonely? And how many in relationships are feeling pressured to perform (not just in bed..  but in pleasing their lover / romantic partner).

astronomically, it’s not looking good am afraid.

February started with a Mars-opposition-Venus.   Mars is already (recently) begin to retrograde in the earth sign of Virgo (It will be doing this till 14th April  😦    One saving grace (not that planets do that) is ..Venus is in Aries at the moment..     So it may be a case of the Ladies feeling the heat, while the men are stuck in some earthy chores, duties, work..etc.

On the 15th Feb, Venus-squares-Pluto!!   That energy is going to overshadow Valentine’s day..  Arhhhgg!   Yeap, people.. expect all sorts of sexual mis-adventures, probes and power-struggles!   Expect little things to make things worse.  So measure what you say!   Mercury just entered Pisces.   Communication ain’t gonna be clear… and if anything might prove to be airy-fairy   (or poetic?!)

Guess what? 14th March is looking brilliant.    Venus-trines-Mars!   (good)    Venus-conjuncts-Jupiter (auspicious).   ..and Venus-trines-pluto (Hot n intense!)..and and..Mars-tines-Jupiter..  (project and expand!)…and following day (15th Match), Mars-trine-pluto (more heat and passion..and raw sex!!)

My advise..  postpone Valentine’s Day to 14th March 2012.  🙂

-Mani

This painting (watercolour) from

www.ArtofMani.co.uk

Year of the water Dragon: Chinese New Year 2012

Wishing all  viewers and bloggers and followers …and friends and family…and especially my chinese friends…Raymond, Yin & their 2 children,   Ping & Christine and their soon to be born Son (who is going to be a Dragon.  Wow!!  And dearest pagan friend Reggie `Loose cannon’ Kwan… a fantastic New Year.

There is a fab article about this in the latest issue of Gaian Times, `Unleashing the mighty Dragon’  by my sister!.   Here’s the quick link.  http://www.gaiantimes.com/html/5__unleashing_the_dragon.html

Chinese New year is celebrated on the New Moon in the sign of Aquarius ..every year, and today is the aquarian new moon.   The other culture who base their religious festivals around lunar stations is Hindus.

The `postcard’ below is created using photos I took of China town, London, and a dragon statue I have.    By the way, the China Town’s New Year celebration in Central London takes place next Sunday 29th January’12 from 10am on wards.   Am hoping to go with friends from Hern’s Tribe.. 🙂

-Mani


Gaian Times eco-magazine

And here it is – issue#3, just out!!

Gaian Times eco-magazine
GT issue#3 (January 2012)

The first issue of Gaian Times e-magazine – and the e stands for both electronic and ecology – came out in June 2011.

Gaian Times e-magazine explores the Science, Magic, Arts, Psychology and Social trends – among many other eco-centric subjects.  Is there such a word? Eco-centric? I have been using it for a while now.  Anyway GT offers thought-provoking articles, features, information on Eco events and initiatives, other charitable bodies and campaigns. GT also has counselling & psychology related columns- social observations and commentary really, by several regular writers (April Jonquil, Rose Dixon, Antara, Kelly).

Of course many others have already contributed articles / features – Marcus, Reggie, Hazel’O, Pete

GT magazine  was a natural progression to the 3 Gaian Conventions that I had created and managed for Pagan Federation London between 2007-1009.

Oh, almost forgot to say – Gaian Times is also a not for profit Company Ltd by Guarantee. Well, I like to call it an `organisation’ that is growing..

This year, am planning to focus quite a bit of my attention on Gaian Times. So watch this space.

-Mani Navasothy

Thai Pongal – Harvest Festival of Tamils

Thai Pongal

Happy Thai Pongal.

That’s what Tamils and other Indians who celebrate this festival say to one another at this time.

It’s the same as wishing someone `Happy New Year’ – because for farmers in Indian countries, this is actually a new year. Well, not just for farmers – it is the beginning of the new calendar for Tamils and marks the first day of the new year.  Thai is the name of the first month.

The rituals for Thai Pongal involve people clearing their homes of clutter and old unwanted items (sometimes burning them), sweeping of the whole house and washing the floors (if cement or concrete), then purifying the home with ringing of bells, incense and so on. On the day of Pongal, all household members will rise early, look to the rising Sun and make a prayer, then take a bath / shower (anointing themselves with special water blessed by priest from a nearby temple). All then wear new cloths.  The matriarch or lady of the household will cook the special milk-rice in the heart fire, and bring it on a plate to the family altar. Here everyone gathers to offer prayer, songs and worship. Then the rice and other sweet food items are shared, and offered through out the day to any arriving guests. Chewing sugar-cane  or sugar-candy is also tradition, as well as giving gifts to all – new cloths, religious statues or artefacts, furniture etc. Greeting cards are exchanged between family members, friends, relatives and work colleagues.

Here’s wishing you a fruitful year ahead. May all the seeds you plant be nurtured by the earth and rain, and energised by the Sun..

Shooting brings us closer to God??

A friend posted the following in a social network in his status-bar.

This may sound strange , but ive just come back from shooting and pleased with myself cos I shot 99 out of 100. After shooting I feel a sense of deep inner peace and Zen. I also have that blissful post orgasm feeling. Guns have given my the inner spiritual peace i search so long for. Guns have also brought me and xxxx.. closer than anything else in our somewhat strange relationship. I think taking up shooting is the ultimate relationship bonder and the way to getting closer to god.

My response:

 “I used to practice my air-pistol in back garden 20+ yrs back.. til lady next door started a panic that I may shoot her cat. The hobby never went further than a year of shooting club in Uni. But some years back, one morning when I woke up to find a Heron by my garden pond, with a goldfish in its beak, first I thought of was to shoot it from my window – to save rest of my goldfish! By the time I dug out pistol and cocked it, heron had flown. Moral of the story – I don;t trust the beast within us that is used to weapons, for in a fit of rage, one day ..it may break free of reason – no matter how clever and controlled we think we are! How can the act of practicing a sport that stems from intent to kill bring us close to God and inner peace? The psychology is all wrong there I fear.”

Someone else has commented that, “martial arts training has a spiritual side, like the Kung Fu monks – I think it has a lot to do with the attitude with which the discipline is approached”.

What do people think?   You comments welcome on this matter..

-Mani