What is it with The Daily Mail?

29 11 2012

What is it with The Daily Mail?


What is wrong with this paper? Is it so antediluvian that any religion other than Protestant Christianity is seen as some kind of threat or is it just that journalists working for them have forgotten the meaning of the word ‘investigate’?


Today’s edition carries a story about two elderly men accused of sexually abusing children over several decades. This is a horrific story and the two men are answering to these accusations in the appropriate place – Court.


However, The Mail has its twist in their reporting of the case: the two men are ‘pagan’, don’t you know?



Will the Mail ever accept this kind of behaviour has nothing to do with Pagan practice or ethics – or the practices and ethics of any other religion?  Such actions are out and out criminal behaviour, no more, no less. A small investigation into Paganism and its ethics would have enlightened the Mail on this matter.


The Wild Hunt have reported on the Mail’s story and they ran a statement about these matters from the Pagan Federation:

“The Pagan Federation believes that sexual activity between consenting adults is a matter only for those consenting adults. However, in no way is any sexual activity engaged in with children or vulnerable persons ever appropriate. Such activity does not form a part of any Pagan path and, should any Pagan be found to be engaging in sexual activity with a child, officers of the Pagan Federation would not hesitate in communicating those concerns with the appropriate authorities.” 



 Hopefully, the PF’s statement has been brought to the attention of the editor of the Mail.  Such people are anathema to any religious organisation, including Paganism, as the PF statement makes very clear.


Let’s hope that is clear enough for the Mail.




Pathworking Through Poetry – out now

21 11 2012

ImageI had two pleasant surprises yesterday: I came home to a parcel containing copies of my book and Amazon.co.uk sent out their pre-orders 24 days early. All very exciting!

I will admit to sitting and staring at the book with a grin on my face that would make the Cheshire cat look like he was in sulk mode. I’d been talking to a work colleague earlier in the day and said to her that the waiting bit was almost as bad as the last stages of pregnancy where you climb the walls, desperate for something to happen. I didn’t expect the ‘something to happen’ quite as quickly though.      


Pathworking Through Poetry

12 11 2012

Published Dec 14th 2012

I’ve wanted to write this book for a long time,  wanted to share the amazing insights I find in the  poetry of William Butler Yeats, Fiona MacLeod and Seumas O’Sullivan; and in the songs and stories of Ireland and Scotland.  The chance to write a short book as an introduction to one aspect of personal Pagan practice was too good an opportunity to pass up – and the challenge was to keep it to the word limit asked for by the publisher. Writing it was a sweet pleasure and an act of reverence to both the poets and the Gods and Goddesses explored in its pages.

Although it isn’t yet published, those I’ve shared it with have been positive in their feedback, which has been great to hear. What some have said about it is beneath this post. I hope you enjoy the book and, if you do not already know these poets, find something in their works that resonates with you too.
Pagan Portals: Pathworking Through Poetry

Fiona Tinker

(Moon Books: John Hunt Publishing)

Poetry talks to the heart as well as the head. It can move us, make us think and guide us. This book explores how poetry can help develop a Pathworking through exploring wisdom hidden in plain view. It is a look at creative processes, inspirations, how nature and the Divine move us – and how to apply this on a personal level to Pagan Pathworking.


John Macintyre, former President of The Pagan Federation and former Presiding Officer of the Scottish Pagan Federation.

“Paganism grows from many roots and its profound, numinous, beauty and ready accessibility within the living world around us ensured survival as a strong cultural undercurrent through centuries of religious condemnation. Paganism wells up, of itself, wherever human hearts are open to it. In this wonderful book, Fiona Tinker sets out, analyses, and enters into the spiritual vision implicit in the work of three hugely significant poets; Yeats, MacLeod and O’Sullivan. Her underlying theme is mythopoesis, specifically the ways in which poetry, truly inspired poetry, can connect with us at levels far deeper than the conscious mind can reach. These poems, and the pathworking Fiona Tinker weaves through them, do not tell us what is true. Rather, they inspire and guide us towards thresholds beyond which truth may be found if we are willing to make the journey. Myths need to be entered into rather than received, making Pathworking Through Poetry a particularly valuable addition to any thinking Pagans’ library.

Shaun William Hayes: Poet, Druid, co-founder of the Sylvan Grove, member of the Order of Bards, Ovates and Druids (OBOD)

Here then we have a magical work: From it’s title of triple meaning through to its challenging use of poetry as a means to tap into the limitless potential of inspiration and on to its invitation to step into the magical cauldron of the bard rather than to remain merely passive. Quite a challenge for the author and the reader both. Fiona Tinker manages the task with great skill, knowledge and the light touch of the fae, that brings a three dimensional experience to a subject that so often manages only two. She reminds us that the bards of old were no mere entertainers, but were, at their best, powerful exponents of an ancient art. This work offers not only an insight into the minds of great poets but also presents a set of tools by which the reader might go forward and discover a new landscape within themselves and a deeper understanding of the relationship between the spirits of nature, mankind and the ancient celtic gods through the language of poetry. I feel there is much more to come from this author and look forward to discovering it.


Nimue Brown | The Druid Network

This exquisite little book is both inspired, and thoroughly inspiring. Best suited to those with an interest in both the bardic path and meditation work, it delivers a great deal in its pages. Author Fiona Tinker works with a number of poems, exploring their imagery and meaning deeply. This in itself is fascinating for the myths and folklore brought into the mix, and also offers insight into how to go deeply into poetry. If you’ve forgotten the analysis of school, or hated it, this is a good re-encountering, full of soul and awen. A well written poem is a densely packed thing full of food for contemplation, and taking time to consider nuances, references and just where it takes you is all good work for the bard. In learning how to think about poetry, we also learn to be more adept creators of it.

Fiona Tinker takes the process a step further, exploring how the poem can be utilised for pathworking – overcoming the big problem of keeping track that faces the solitary worker. In theory, any resonant poem could be used in the same way, so the reader can not only explore the poems included, but take the same practice to other works that move them.

From the above you might expect the poems to be ancient. They aren’t. This is an important point, because it is the quality of inspiration that matters, and the way in which inspiration opens a door for us, not the age of the piece. If you are moved, then you have something to work with.

It’s beautifully written, non-dogmatic, accessible and intelligent – the perfect balance. If this is your path then this is a book that will help you considerably on the journey. Very much recommended.
The publication dates are the 14th Dec (UK) and 16th Dec (US) and the book is available for pre-order:

amazon.co.uk http://tinyurl.com/bvtyjnr

amazon.com  http://tinyurl.com/bnsd6q2

It’s also available via Waterstone’s and Barnes & Noble’s websites. This is all very, very exciting. In addition, there’s another website selling my book that has thrilled me – as the others have – but this one has absolutely amazed and delighted me:-


Isn’t that brilliant? I’d love to have a conversation with Japanese people about the poets and the ideas in my book!