Brazil struggles with its ongoing political crisis. Another incident illuminates the ongoing problem of Islamophobic violence. But things might not be as bad as they seem if one takes the long view. It's Fiery Tuesday, our weekly segment on political and societal news from around the globe! All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!
PaganSquare is a community blog space where Pagans can discuss topics relevant to the life and spiritual practice of all Pagans.
Over at AllergicPagan.com, I've been playing with the idea of Pagans reclaiming the word "God". I won't go into all the details -- but I got major pushback. It seems that some words have just been ruined for Pagans....
Into every life a little rain must fall. Unfortunately, sometimes that little bit of rain becomes a deluge or tsunami. Some of us aren’t exactly chipper little rays of sunshine to begin with, so life’s little stumbles can make things more challenging than they really need to be. I’ve battled functional depression for as long as I can remember and there are few things that I take more refuge and comfort in than my pop culture fandoms. For people like me fandom is a lot more than a fun way to spend your time; it’s an escape from the pressures of the mundane and a protected retreat. It’s the ultimate safe space where you are free to let all your weirdness hang out and just enjoy yourself. The power of pop culture magick is to allow us to literally bottle a bit of that joy and take it with us.
For this spell you will need to choose a favorite fandom or two. There are an amazing number of pop culture fandoms out there, so choosing just one or two to work with can be a bit daunting. Think about what is resonating with you right now. It doesn’t matter if you’ve had a favorite fandom for the past decade - what book, movie, music, tv show, series, comic, manga, etc., really resonates with you right now. What bit of pop culture brings you joy today.
Think of a character, scenario, episode, song, etc., from your chosen fandom that really makes you happy. For example, I’m doing my version of this spell using Firefly, particularly the character of Kaylee. In a cast of misfits and anti-heroes Kaylee stands out as being not only a kick-ass mechanic, but as being genuinely sweet and happy more often than not. I greatly admire her ability to look on the bright side of things and enjoy what she has while she has it - something I’m not great at.
- One candle (in your favorite color) - pure beeswax is best, as the honey in the wax adds a bit of sweetening to the spell. If you choose a large candle you should repeat the incantation each time you burn it. If you cannot burn a candle for whatever reason, choose a tealight or small chime candle that you can carry with you.
- One wearable/carryable object representing your bit of pop culture - if you have something overt like a fandom t-shirt great, if not something as simple as a sigil drawn on a piece of paper will do.
- One small bottle of drinkable liquid - This can be tap water or anything else, just be sure the bottle seals well enough for you to carry it in a pocket without worrying about leakage.
Ground, center, and set your sacred space however you usually do. (If you don’t usually do those things that’s ok too!)
Set your candle on your altar or whatever prepared space you have. Set your wearable object (a leather bracelet for me) and your bottle of liquid next to the candle. If your bit of pop culture has a video or audio form, play it in the background. Meditate for a few minutes on your bit of fandom and what about it brings you joy.
Light your candle (or not) and speak an incantation like the following, with the specifics changed for your fandom and your personal needs:
Light of flame bring me joy, allow me the happiness and good nature of Kaylee.
I will overcome my obstacles with a smile, as she does.
I will enjoy the good that flows into my life, as she does.
I will find solace and comfort in hard times and emerge the stronger for it.
I will shed bitterness and resentment, as she does.
I release negativity and depression.
I find joy in everyday life and dance with joy.
Let the essence of happiness flow into my bracelet and my tonic.
In times of sorrow, stress, anxiety, or fear I will wear my bracelet, sip my tonic, and find happiness.
I embrace joy.
So must it be.
Let the candle burn down, then close your sacred space as you usually do. Carry/wear your charged object and sip your charged liquid when you need a boost. Feel free to repeat the spell as often as necessary.
If true, it's got to be one of history's more delicious ironies.
The ancient city of Cyrene, in what is now Libya, was founded in 620 BCE by colonists from the volcanic island of Thera (or Santorini), of Minoan archaeology fame.
Foremost among its patron gods was Apollo Kernaios, the Horned Apollo.
On the city's coinage, the god was shown in profile, with a crescent ram's horn curling around his ear. It was likely this image that gave rise to Lysimakhos' famous coins depicting the horned Alexander.
Over the centuries, the city was home to many famous statesmen, artists, and philosophers, but today its best-known resident (historic or not) is probably Simon of Cyrene, who is said in the Synoptic gospels to have carried the cross of Jesus when Jesus himself was too weak to carry it.
The spiritual side of Pokémon is explored. We take a look at a few books that feature a classical "adventuring party." And the significance of the "Jedi Mecca" is explained by the director of Star Wars: Rogue One. It's Airy Monday, our weekly segment on magic and religion in pop culture! All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!
In the first blog in this series, I argued that one of the hallmarks of a good theology is recognizing that the source of authority must be located in individuals and communities who interpret texts and traditions as they encounter divinity anew in the present. In our new book Goddess and God World, Judith Plaskow and I suggest that a second hallmark of good theology is the “turn to the world.” What we mean by this is not only that divinity is immanent in the world, but also that the purpose of human life is to be found in this world—not the next.
The God of traditional theologies is pictured as an old man with a long white beard who rules the world from heaven. It is commonly assumed by those familiar with this picture that the purpose and meaning of human life is not to be found in this world—but rather in heaven. This assumption is increasingly being challenged. Many people no longer believe in life after death. The purpose of morality is increasingly being understood as improving the conditions for the flourishing of human and other forms of life—not on gaining the approval of a God who has the power to assign individuals to heaven or hell in the next world.
In my earlier book She Who Changes, I argued that western philosophies and theologies took a massive “wrong turn” when they accepted the Platonic dualism of mind and body and argued that the rational soul or spirit can—and should--rise above the body in order to commune with eternal truths. I stated that this “wrong turn” away from the body and the world was rooted in “matricide.”
This is the most important New Moon of the year. It’s an eclipse that will further emphasize the Saturn-Neptune square that has been dogging us this year, particularly in the political, social and environmental arenas, including an inability to get to the truth, “othering” (e.g. racism, misogyny, religious persecution), floods and fires and major problems with pollution, particularly water pollution. These and other Saturn-Neptune issues (finding truth, spiritual materialism, a pull towards authoritarianism) are being brought to our attention so we can fix them, both in our personal lives and on a larger stage. The eclipse insists we look at how we’re doing with that, and work on manifesting our spiritual ideals in a practical way.
As with all challenging charts — and make no mistake, this is a formidable chart — there is a tremendous amount of power being made available to us, so we will need to stay focused and sharp to make sure that power is directed to our benefit, and hopefully the benefit of all. The benefits here, if we work with the energy, include powerful, practical visions, a balancing of perspective, improved health, wisdom born of experience, and a deeper insight into our personal spiritual paths....