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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Butterflies on Radar

The Autumn started early here, with a sudden snap of cold, rainy, foggy weather hovering right on top of us for a few weeks.  It was an abrupt shift away from the warm, sunny weather we usually get. After the weather warmed back up, flocks of painted lady butterflies (Vanessa cardui) began their fall migrations. These small brown spotted butterflies migrate through the West just as the Summer fades into the Fall. Because of elevated temperatures, the breeding season was extended, resulting in huge swarms of butterflies, thousands and thousands more than usual, flitting through the remnants of the gardens, tiny clouds of them hosting in the crowns of trees.

                Clouds of painted ladies so dense, they could be seen on weather radar.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Baba Yaga Brand Flour

Times being what they are, it's the (I think, rather endearing) habit of contemporary polytheist cultures to name commercial products after deities.

If you don't believe me, check out your nearest Indian grocer; you'll find various Laxmi Brand foodstuffs on practically every shelf (Lakshmi being the goddess of wealth and opulence).

That's how I came by 10 pounds of Baba Yagá brand flour.

A friend of mine is priest-in-residence at a Slavic temple over in “St” Paul. Among the resident deities there is Baba Yagá, the scary old hag-witch of Russian folklore. (She's the one that lives in the hut with chicken legs and flies in a mortar and pestle.)

There Baba Yagá receives offerings daily, in a fine old pagan tradition known as propitiation. It's never a bad idea to keep the dangerous ones happy.

(I might add that the Great Recession didn't hit the Twin Cities with anywhere near the impact that it did elsewhere, and that our unemployment rate here is low compared to the rest of the country. Whether or not this has anything to do with Baba Yagá, I'm not qualified to say. It's certainly an interesting coincidence.)

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Tasha Halpert
    Tasha Halpert says #
    Perhaps an echo of the triple goddess? Just wonderin'...
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    I hear that she has two sisters. They're both Baba Yaga, too. !
  • Tasha Halpert
    Tasha Halpert says #
    Always loved Baba Yaga ever since I read about her in my Jack and Jill magazine as a child. Of course they didn't emphasize the ne
Ancestors at the Hearth: Hallowe’en Edition

I love the word Hallowe’en. It conjures all the warmth and mystery that I associate with the middle of the harvest season, and having celebrated it secularly throughout my life doesn’t diminish my now more spiritual experience of the holiday; instead, it accentuates it. Maybe it’s just me, but I find so much satisfaction in deepening my experience of the familiar, seeing beneath the surface of what is already around me. Making Hallowe’en sacred to me as a pagan is a rewarding experience.

While Hallowe’en, or All Hallows Eve, is a later, Christian term denoting a holiday that stems from the more ancient Samhain, it can still be relevant to pagans. After all, to “hallow” means to sanctify or venerate – to recognize something as sacred or worthy of veneration — which is what many of us do during this time. We pay homage to the dead: family members, beloved dead, cultural and/or spiritual ancestors, and sometimes even the dead with whom we have little to no emotional connection but who have walked the same earth.

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The Oracles of Delphi - A Living Priesthood


I am an Oracle of Delphi.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs


[Continuing our series of interviews centered around Myths, Moons, and Mayhem, we sit down today with Morgan Elektra.]

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

Oh gods, it's Posch being outrageous. Again.


An important part of learning to think in Pagan is what I'm going to call Paganonormativity.

The presumption of Paganness.

There's no need to say, “This song is sung only at Samhain and at pagan funerals.” It's enough to say, “This song is sung only at Samhain and at funerals.”

“Pagan funeral” is redundant. (Hey, we invented them.) All funerals are presumed to be pagan unless otherwise specified.

Thinking in Pagan, gods is normative; "God" gets quotation marks, as derivative.

In human history, paganism is normative. Non-paganism is the aberration.

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Recent comment in this post - Show all comments
  • Anne Forrester
    Anne Forrester says #
    Yes, but where oh where did you get that delicious art at the top?! You really need to give credit where credit is due...
Pagan News Beagle: Faithful Friday, October 20 2017

Facing death, inmates create art to reflect their spiritual outlook. A Jew talks about what the formation of his identity. And an explanation of some of the principles behind so-called Chinese "alchemy" (which is, in fact, quite different from Western alchemy). It's Faithful Friday, our segment on faiths and religious communities from around the world. All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!

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