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PaganSquare is a community blog space where Pagans can discuss topics relevant to the life and spiritual practice of all Pagans.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The Guy in the Red Suit: Pagans and Santa

A local coven just sent around the invitation to their big public Yule this year. So far as I can divine, the heart of the ritual will be an encounter with the “Guy in the Red Suit.”

Now, historically speaking, Santa is entirely a creation of Christian folklore, with no known connections to the pre-Christian world. Contemporary pagans differ in their attitudes towards this most popular—and vapid—of American folk figures.

Some pagans wholeheartedly embrace Santa, name and all, along with Yule trees, wreaths, and the rest of the (secular) Christmas package. I suspect that there's a strong element of nostalgia here. As pagans, we're so often entirely out-of-step with the overculture that, come Yule, it can come as something of a relief just to relax and go with the flow for once.

Some see Santa as a figure with pagan roots, and hence acceptable, if perhaps rechristened [sic] with a new pagan name. This is untrue, historically speaking: like the Yule tree, Santa grows out of folk Christianity. Granted this historical datum, whether or not—like the Yule tree—Santa is ultimately paganizable (now there's an adjective for you) remains a matter of opinion.

Some would reject Santa as hopelessly tainted by his Christian connections, often in favor of some other Yuletide gift-bringer: Mother Berchta, Befana, or the Yule Goat inter alia. With Brom's recent novel of the same name, Krampus has gained something of an enthusiastic following.

(In fact, all of these figures originally emerged out of Christian folklore as did Santa himself, and none of them have any traceable connection to any known pagan tradition.)

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Jamie
    Jamie says #
    Mr. Posch, Hooray for Krampus!
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    According to "Psychedelic Mystery Traditions" by Thomas Hatsis Santa didn't get stuck in a red suit until Coke used him in and adv

Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs

May I be inspired. b2ap3_thumbnail_75392784_2474522466093294_7626079059591561216_o.jpg
May I be grateful.
May I walk in ease
and devotion.

As I have noted several times here on this blog, this June I fell and hurt my ankle, which confined me to flat surfaces and my back deck instead of the long walks on the road and through the woods that I so enjoy and find so nourishing of my creativity and spirituality. In my time on the deck, I started to ponder devotion and building devotional practices and from those contemplations the Goddess Devotional prayerbook was born. My family jokes that I fell down and when I got back up, I’d written a book. This was a surprise project for me this year, not something I expected to create, and I’m really pleased with it.


Free pdf version and a collection of additional resources is available here

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
CRYSTAL QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS

This week we are visiting crystal questions and answers. These excellent and thoughtful crystal questions come from a Crystal Friend in Australia. I hope you benefit from reading his crystal questions and my answers!

QUESTIONS: DO CRYSTAL ENERGIES CONTAMINATE EACH OTHER?

image labradorite, lapis CRYSTAL FRIEND: I have 5 different stones I meditate with a rose quartz the size of the palm of my hand. An opalite. A moonstone. A cloudy quartz pointed pendant and a clear quartz pointed pendant.

...
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Fields of Gold: Money Attraction Herbs

As a kitchen witch and gardening enthusiast, I am always seeking to learn more about the power of herbs, plants, roots and flowers can be used in the craft. Grow your wealth, literally with these handy herbs:

Allspice berries bring good luck; gather 7 berries and place in a small pouch to carry in your pocket or purse for a week, On the 7th day, burn them with cinnamon incense while making your wish for whatever you want.

...
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My Vegetarianism Is Not a Judgment of You. But....

A Helpful Guide to Social Relations Between Dietary Minorities and Practicing Omnivores

 

First off: Hey, Non-Vegetarian, my vegetarianism is not a judgment of you, OK? There's absolutely no need for you to feel criticized, defensive, or apologetic.

No, I don't feel superior. No, I'm not out to convert you. You make your choices, I make mine. Really, there are far more important things to disagree about.

 

That said, let me make a few helpful suggestions to my fellow vegetarians, vegans, dieters, and other non-practicing omnivores for dealing with the Dietary Majority:

When someone offers you something that you don't eat, say: No, thanks.

No, thanks.” That's all.

Not: “I can't eat that.” Actually, you can; you just (for whatever reason) choose not to.

Not: “I don't eat that.” That's the kind of statement that can't help but come off as judgmental, however you intend it.

Not: “Ooooh!” (recoils in repulsion). When someone else offers you what they themselves are eating, it's an act of generosity and hospitality, regardless of how revolting you may or may not find it. Act accordingly, instead of with a rebuff.

I won't tell you about my dietary parameters if you don't tell me about yours.

For gods' sakes, spare us the details, OK? 1) They're a bore, and 2) they're the best way to sound like a smug, sanctimonious, self-righteous A-hole. Just shut up and eat already, OK?

Be proactive.

When someone else offers to cook for you, make sure that they know your parameters beforehand, so that you're not springing it on them at the last minute. The laws of hospitality are binding on the guest as well as the host.

So when Mom invites you to a Thanksgiving table that you know won't fit your dietary parameters, tell her: “Great! I've got this great [vegetarian entrée] that I'll bring along; I know you'll just love it.”

Or offer to help with preparation. ("Hey, I'm going to mash some of these potatoes with almond milk; I really love them that way.") Then you can actively ensure that there's food that you're willing to eat.

Take some ownership of the situation.

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Recent comment in this post - Show all comments
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    When I visit my sister Barbara for Thanksgiving the big dishes are set out buffet style and we help ourselves. I pass on the corn

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Ghost in the Cellar

As kids in early 60s Steeltown, we had a whole repertory of backyard games. My favorite was Ghost in the Cellar.

Children's games often have a soupçon of ritual to them—most are circular, the game's intent being to regenerate itself by starting over again—Ghost in the Cellar being the most ritualized of them all. It had all the elements of good ritual: a story, archetypal characters, catharsis, a felicitous combination of the scripted and the spontaneous, and, best of all, a ritualized dialogue that had to be repeated with absolute precision every time.

Dramatis Personae: The Mother. The Children. The Ghost.

Story: In the course of play, the Children get dirty. (Here there was lots of room for fun improvisation. As we got older, the "dirt" became less physical and more behavioral.) The Mother calls the Children in for supper, but is dismayed to see how dirty they've gotten.

Mother: Go down to the cellar and wash your hands!

The Children go down into the (imaginary) cellar—it never occurred to us to play the game using a real one—but there they encounter the Ghost.

Ghost: [Shrieks]

The Children run back to the Mother, screaming.

Children: There's a ghost! A ghost in the cellar!

The Mother assures them that there is no ghost—here she would improvise creatively about laundry hanging up to dry—and sends them back down to the cellar. Three times—the ritual number—this happens. The third time, the Mother agrees to accompany the Children to the cellar. There, sure enough, they encounter the Ghost.

You've got to hand it to the Mother. Does she run away screaming? No. Instead, she confronts the Ghost (which, I'm told, is exactly what one should do in such situations).

Mother: What do you want?

Ghost: A match.

Mother: What for?

Ghost: To light my pipe.

Mother: What for?

Ghost: To kill you!

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Use Your Words: Intention Magic

I learned the art of intention-setting some years ago and quickly incorporated it into my morning rituals. Upon waking, sometimes, even before I open my eyes, I set my intention for the day. It can be about work, financial challenges a problem I am dealing with, relationships, health, hopes and dreams and anything, as long as it is also for the good of all. It has become a morning prayer for me, quick and quiet. I simply state my intention such as “I Intend my presentation today at work  will go really well and I will feel joy as it is happening and set the stage for success for this product launch, for the good of all.  I am grateful for this wonderful day. And so it is.”  During the peak of my money woes,  I would get very specific and set intentions for the exact amount of money I needed to make the mortgage payment, credit card bill, etc. Granular detail is good when manifesting so it is fine to say how much you  want when intending with money. . Avoid using words with any negative charge to them such as “can’t, but, won’t” and amplify your intention with a statement of gratitude immediately after. Always state your intention as if it is happening now and not in the future. Be specific and intend without limit; it does now always have to personal to you and intending for the greater good of all contributes to a positive global shift. By setting intentions every day, you will soon become a master manifestor. I intend that for you!

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