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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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Recent blog posts
Heathen Ancestral Wisdom to Cope With Quarantine

From mundane to woo, here’s some simple advice on what to do.

#1: Honor Your Ancestors

We’re all here because our ancestors pulled through much worse times than this.Their strength, pragmatism and a good deal of mystical knowledge are all still available to us. At this time, it’s a good idea to thank them and ask for their support. Honoring the ancestors is a core part of many polytheist paths, but it may be new to you. It doesn’t take much: raise a glass to them, say a prayer, talk to an old family photo. Keep them in your thoughts. b2ap3_thumbnail_othala_20200318-204744_1.jpg

The rune Othala (pictured at left) can really help with this,
through meditation or burning a candle inscribed with it, dedicated to the ancestors. Family is important right now. Even if you haven’t always seen eye to eye, rise above it: these aren’t ordinary times, and you need each other, but don’t tolerate—or inadvertently cause— abuse. Check in with your relatives, especially more vulnerable older folk you may not have seen for awhile. It’s also a good time to sit down and listen to those oft-ignored elders, learning the family stories, and hearing how they learned to cope.

Do this now, because you may not get another chance. While this is always true, current events just underscore this.

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Disease, Protection, and Animism: Folklore from the Past

Everyone is talking about COVID19. How could we not? My five-year-old's school has closed for two weeks, like all other schools in the state, and we're having to postpone his 6th birthday party. Like many other families, we've been spending most of our time at home, although we do plan on battling the cabin fever with some family hikes in the mountains here and there. My husband remarked today that we've never seen a situation quite like this in our lives.

 

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Mother Root

As I'm walking into the store to get more onions and garlic (some hoard toilet paper; hey, we all have our own priorities) I think: While I'm here, I might as well pick up a couple bags of pota—.

I'm halfway into the thought before I realize my mistake.

Of course, there's nary a spud to be had. They've even removed the pallet where the bags of potatoes are usually piled.

Some love pasta, some love bread. I like both, but I'm a witch of the Tribe of Witches, and witches are potato-eaters from way back.

Why witches and potatoes? Well, they're survival food, as hordes of panicked potato-hoarding Americans can readily attest. Easy to store, easy to cook, they're nutritious, delicious, and excellent belly-fillers. But there's more to the story than that.

They say that back when they first brought potatoes into the village, they said: Hey, look at these goofy-ass tubers from the New World. They're called 'potatoes.' You can eat them, really you can: here, see?

The cowans all shrank back. Are you kidding? they said. Those are nightshades; nightshades'll kill you.

The witches, however, who knew their nightshades, came closer, intrigued.

You can eat these, you say? we said. Here, let me see that.

I grew up knowing that there are certain things that you always have to have in the house: bread, salt, onions, garlic, potatoes. Not to have at least a little of each is terrible bad luck.

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
Waste Not Want Not

          The phrase "waste not want not," sounds as though it might have come from the Bible, however it did not. It also sounds like old fashioned New England thrift. My mother being German, definitely learned the concept from her experience. I have found it useful in trying to utilize whatever food I might have left over from any meal. In my book, wasting food is not to be done. 

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Tasha Halpert
    Tasha Halpert says #
    Yes, many do that. I don't like to waste anything, as I said. It's actually a fun challenge sometimes. Thanks for your comment.
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    My parents would put leftovers in little Tupperware boxes that often would often wind up forgotten at the back of the refrigerator

Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Hand Washing Prayer

Let me begin by giving credit where credit is due: after a recent idea on the ADF Bardic Guild, I decide to join in and write a handwashing prayer. What is a handwashing prayer, you might ask? It is a prayer to be recited for the 20 seconds that one is supposed to spend washing one's hands. One should always wash their hands at the appropriate time. Now, in a time of pandemic, it is more important than ever to wash one's hands and maintain cleanliness whenever possible.

How does one go about learning this prayer while washing one's hands? I use an index card: primitive, low-tech, easily transportable, even recyclable. I put the index card next to the sink and then I repeat the prayer as I wash my hands.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Covid Babies

I'm going to make a prediction: Nine months from now, we're going to be seeing a spike in births.

You could call them the Covid babies.

With the coming of this latest iteration of the corona virus, Americans are socially isolating. For the next few weeks, we're all going to be spending a lot more time at home than usual. Even Americans eventually get tired of movies and computer games.

That's how these things work. Back in the 60s my uncle Milton went back to the old family village in Staffordshire, in the old Hwicce tribal hideage, for the celebrations marking the 500th anniversary of its founding.

The Black Plague had swept through the area, decimating the population. What survivors there were burned down the old villages—fire purifies—and banded together to start a new one in a new location, now part of the greater West Midlands conurbation. That's our oldest family story: the memory of a collective trauma. Out of disaster, new beginnings.

Some things you don't need a crystal ball to foresee. Spring Equinox 2020, and Americans are going to be making a lot more love than usual in the days to come, may it be for a blessing.

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Tarot in the Time of Coronavirus - The Hermit and Temperance Cards

Those with strong Hermit archetypes have already been self-isolating. In fact, self-quarantine is a natural state of being. The Hermit goes it alone, seeking knowledge--and trusting that his next step is lit by destiny. This energy is comfortable by itself, not needing the company of others to entertain, distract or solace.

And yet, an actualized Hermit can also embrace others into his/her sphere, experiencing exquisite intimacy and demonstrating extraordinary compassion. (Usually, this is limited to smaller groups, because the energy output is just too much for the Hermit archetype--even among extroverted ones!).

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