Regarding Abuse

{Stepping out of the usual programming on the Mast}

As most of us know, the heinous crime of child sexual abuse (and abuse of adults too) is rampant in all religious and non-religious communities in the United States (yes, I repeat all). The US has the highest incidence of child sexual abuse in the ‘developed’ world.

The Enough Abuse campaign is a group that is doing something about this. Check them out. A good resource for leaders to know about.

Earth Day 2014


The Sixth Extinction: A Conversation With Elizabeth Kolbert

Humanity’s “most enduring legacy” will be our effect on the rest of life on Earth


“You write that we’re putting other species in a double bind: forcing them to move by changing the climate, and at the same time making it harder for them to move.

Pretty much everything now is on the move or should be on the move. I think it’s 30 feet a day you’ve got to be moving, toward the Poles or upslope, if you want to track the climate. Some things are moving very fast; some things are not.

In the past we know that some species have survived pretty dramatic climate swings by moving. But now you have the problem that where you might need to move is either bisected by a road or completely occupied by Los Angeles or São Paolo. So you’re bringing both of those forces to bear.”


This book is on my wish list. We’re living in the sixth mass extinction on this planet, and one supposedly conscious species is involved, and truly one portion of that species that has inflicted its madness, its hubris upon the rest in this so-called ‘global civilization’. If this is not an apocalypse, I don’t know what could be. Yes, we are living in the middle of the apocalypse. Western, industrial capitalist civilization has embodied the apocalypse in its drive to escape embodiment.

The Banquet: A Megala Poem

Each year the Ekklesia Antinoou does a contest on this date called the Megala Antinoia. Here’s a light hearted poem I wrote for it.


The Banquet

We’ll assemble where Antinous hangs out with Hippolytus

By Diana’s grove in Lanuvium above the Pacific.

But what would Adolph Sutro that

Philanthropic Jew who made it in silver

A new world immigrant and progressive mayor

Of San Francisco and builder of marvels

Think about all this devotion in his garden?

I think he might rather like it actually.

Let’s reach for the holy bough, let’s invite Frazier

To this party, (atheist that he was notwithstanding)

And Winckelman of course, he would surely like to attend, and

Wilde and Yourcenar, quipping and quaffing,

And there will be P. Sufenas Virius Lupus, naturally enough.

There will be miner’s lettuce for starters to clear the palate,

This will be a many course banquet I can assure you.

For there is so much to pick from: The Citharoedic Hymn of Curium,

The Antinoieos Flower of the Tebtynis Papyrus or the Oxyrhynchus Poem

And many more. I’d sure be happy to drink wine from a cup,

Whether rhyton, kothon, kantharos or a seemly kyliske

(It will be a symposium too!) and read aloud Pancrates’

Poem of the Lion Hunt and the Animula Vagula Blandula.

Oh, there are so many tidbits just like the endless scraps that

fall from Athenaeus’ banquet table. When shall we begin?


This needs a bit of a key. There’s a grove in a small San Francisco park overlooking the sea from a height. It was originally the home and gardens of Sutro, a very important person in local history, and great benefactor of the city and its populace. Local pagans have long worshiped Diana here and you can usually see flowers and other offerings at her statue. Some of us have done Antinous devotion here too, invoking the memory of Lanuvium, Italy where Diana and Antinous were worshiped together. The kothon was a drinking cup of Spartan origins, the kantharos was a deep cup used in symposia, but some thought they were too deep, while the kyliske was more like a saucer, very modest in what it could contain. Animula Vagula Blandula is a poem written by the emperor Hadrian probably not long before he died. Miner’s lettuce grows there in the spring, a plant associated with the gold rush. We once ate some in a spontaneous ritual gesture.

Hail To The Spirits of Storm

As many of you know, California has been suffering from a horrible drought. The last couple days have been very wet, but we’re still only a little over half of average rainfall in San Francisco. To the south, like in San Jose, there’s been even less rain. Here’s my gratitude for the rain:


Hail to the spirits of storm

To the pounding ones

To the loud ones

The thunder and lightning wielders

The sonorous and the soaking

(May you visit more often)

And to the wide drinking earth

To the moist soil and the land yearning!

We give thanks to the storm powers

To the life giving rains

May we drink deeply!