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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Deities of the Ancients

Supreme God: Woden, Frigg (Germanic); Jupiter, Juno (Roman); Zeus, Hera (Greek); Ra (Egyptian); Marduk (Babylonian)

Creator: Ptah (Egyptian); Anu (Babylonian)

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Magic of the Alphabet

Do you remember learning your letters as a child? When my kids were little we had an alphabet puzzle, very simple, where the letter shapes fit easily into their spaces. Playing with them as an adult I fell back into a sensory reverie—I loved the feel of them. They were fun to manipulate as objects, and the satisfaction of clicking them into place remained with me, bringing me back to a space of childhood sensitivity to the physical world. 

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  • Jamie
    Jamie says #
    Archer, It's so cool that you're writing about this. Sometimes I also find myself staring at the letters in a word, just fascinat
  • Archer
    Archer says #
    That's really cool! I'll have to check that book out.

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Part of the sacred work of the procession is to transport the sacred items—the sacra or hallows—from the place where they are kept to the place of ritual.

That's why, whenever possible, they're carried on the head.

Why carry the hallows on the head? Well, I can think of a number of reasons.

Tradition. That's how the ancestors did it. Why?

Focus. When someone is carrying something in front of them—a jar, say—you see the person first, the jar second. Carry the jar on your head, though, and those watching see the jar first: i.e. the focus is on the hallow and thus, by extension, the holy act that is to be performed with it.

Archaism. Unlike traditional cultures virtually everywhere, here in the United States, it's not typical behavior to carry things on one's head. To carry something on your head in public therefore evokes a sense of the primal, the archaic, which is exactly what ritual should do.

Non-Normativity. Precisely because carrying things on the head is not typical behavior, the action says: Pay heed. Something non-normative—indeed, something sacred—is happening.

Wholism. If you carry something heavy for a long distance on one side, or in front of you, you throw your whole spine out of whack. (I did this myself a few months ago, and was laid up for almost a week afterward.) Carry, instead, on your head, and you have the entire spine to support the sacred weight. It also means that you're bearing the weight of the burden with your entire self. You stand up straighter; you walk more purposively. It also means that you're not turning your head to meet the eyes of onlookers: instead, you're gazing—and thus directing the onlooker's gaze—toward where you're going, and its sacred purpose.

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  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    In the online comic girlgeniusonline.com one of the male leads is given a large hat that produces a flame and has "Gilgamesh Wulfe
Calling Down the Sisterhood: Invoking Goddesses in Your Spellwork

Below is a group of goddesses you can invoke and honor in your ritual work. I strongly advise placing images of a goddess on your altar when you need her aid, her strength, or her special qualities.

Aradia: Lunar Protectress

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Summoning the Gods: Invoking Help from the Heavens

Here is a selection of male deities to choose from in your ritual work. Included are some of the more commonly invoked gods, and also some rare and obscure powers to consider for ceremonies and incantations. There are many rich resources for further study, such as mythology, which is a real tapestry of humankind’s deepest truths, eternal struggles and victories. I have learned many stories that have inspired and enriched my spiritual practices, from books such as Bullfinch’s Mythology, Robert Graves’s The White Goddess,and James G. Frazer’s The Golden Bough. Reading more about the history and folklore of deities will give you ideas and inspiration for rituals of your own creation. The namesake of a Celtic goddess, I love exploring myths of old and applying the wisdom to my modern way of life. Our forebears passed a treasure trove of knowledge to us.

Adonis: God of Truth and Beauty

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 Healthy forests mean healthy people - David Suzuki Foundation

Rant Alert

 

Gods.

I know, I know. We're Americans. We're shallow, narcissistic, and self-obsessed. We believe that the world revolves around us, and that everything that we do, think, and feel is both inherently interesting and worthy of record.

But how, in the name of the Great Mother, could anyone possibly believe that anyone would be even remotely interested in reading their god-damned covid memoir?

Judging from the talk at the party yesterday, I must be the only one on the block who isn't writing a covid memoir. “What I Did During the Great Pandemic.” Ho hum. Sorry, I'm just not interested.

(Nor am I interested in hearing your dammed covid album, thank you very much. Bach has something real to say about covid. Your written-in-response-to-lockdown album just does not.)

I'm reminded of all of those damned therapeutic rituals that pagans were perpetrating back in the 80s and 90s. The paradox is that rituals designed for therapy don't, and can't, deliver, because that's not how ritual works. Ritual heals, but it heals because—instead of focusing us in on ourselves and our own needs—it offers instead the oceanic experience, it takes us out of our own bloody heads and our own bloody problems and brings us to a place where we're part of something larger, part of the Whole. That way, when we come back to our own heads and our own problems, we come back renewed, because we've touched the Source.

Early on in covid I decided that if, during the course of the pandemic, I didn't get the book written, the house spotless, and become fluent in Scots Gaelic, it was OK. It was pretty clear to me that just getting through with my life, my health, and my sanity (reasonably) intact, would in itself be sufficient achievement for a time which, let us all admit, has been difficult.

(Even so, consider what life in Afghanistan is going to be like after Kabul falls—or, more likely, after the cowardly so-called Afghan government hands Kabul over to the Taliban [piss be upon them] on a silver platter. That's difficult. Not being able to go to concerts or having to mask in public? Give me a fracking break.)

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  • Jamie
    Jamie says #
    Mr. Posch, So very true. I guess that's why I never read or saw anybody's 9/11 books or movies: I lived through that time as an A
  • Archer
    Archer says #
    Yes...thanks for reminding me of the way ritual works (for me at least). "By indirections find directions out."

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Lunar Goddesses of the World

Alkmene is the mortal mother of legendary Greek hero Hercules. Her name means “might of the moon.”

Candrea is the Indonesian deity from a love story about princess Candra Kirana of Kediri. Candra was the incarnation of Dewi Ratih, goddess of love, and her name means “glowing like the moon.”

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