Culture Blogs


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Culture Blogs

Popular subjects in contemporary Pagan culture and practice.

Category contains 2 blog entries contributed to teamblogs

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Finding Spring

When we enter the temple, she is gone.

We light from the altar fire and go out to look for her. Up and down we look. Everywhere we see signs of her, and these we gather into baskets; but she herself is nowhere.

We regather. There is only one place she can be. With our fire, we descend.

We walk the winding ways of below. Even here we do not find her.

We enter darkness. In darkness, even fire dies.

While we wait, we sing. In darkness, it ends and begins.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

 b2ap3_thumbnail_web3_sm.jpgThe spider goddess rode the stars as they spun over the small blue planet. Her lover was next to her, encased in a silken chrysalis, safe from the cold, and even from time itself. She had once been known as Arachne, and then Ariadne.  She was waiting. Awaiting the call for joy that would awaken her beloved Dionysus. Awaiting an opportunity to spin her influence in the mortal world, to weave connections where there had been none.  She waited.

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A fanab2ap3_thumbnail_cherry-blossoms-on-stone.jpgtic is one who can't change his mind and won't change the subject. ~ Winston Churchill

We have two significant events happening on March 20th — first, a New Moon in Pisces at 5:36 am EDT, followed immediately by a solar eclipse. Then, that evening at 6:46, the Sun moves into Aries for the Spring Equinox. Both these charts will be in effect for at least 3 to 6 months, and I have cast them for Washington, DC, so they are predictive for the country. Find the charts here and here.

This planetary combination is a recipe for change and new beginnings in this season of the balance between light and dark. We’ll want to get very clear about our intentions for our lives and our world, because the energy we set in motion on this day is likely to be powerful and long lasting. Should you work magic during this time? Of course! It could be argued that a magician is always working magic. But it is definitely a good idea to carefully consider where and how you are directing your magic, and also to know that with volatile energies like these, you may not get the results you expected, particularly if you work at the eclipse. Magic done at an eclipse tends to always have a wild card somewhere in the mix. I’d advise working with the eclipse energy only if your personal magical practice is relatively disciplined, you are well-tuned-in to the flow of energy in your life, and you can be flexible about the results. If this isn’t you, then you might want to work in the evening, at or after the equinox, when the Moon and Sun are trine Saturn, and the Moon is trine Jupiter.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

b2ap3_thumbnail_Autumn-005.JPG

The Autumnal equinox is just around the corner  for us in the Southern Hemisphere.  It is the mid harvest festival on the Pagan seasonal wheel and this year for me, it is about Foundations. For I am starting a new business, one that I hope will grow into a strong creative path and living, but for that to happen I need to create strong foundations, both magically and physically and find the balanced between both.  

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
A 14th Century French Witches' Dance

I can't remember who first told me that not only was this song sung and played at the witches' sabbat Back When, but that, in fact, it actually describes the uncanny goings-on there.

The reason for the song's witchy reputation is unclear. The sheer unreality of the scenario? The implied masquerade? The tune's leering allusion to the plainchant Dies Irae?

Well, whether witches capered to this tune in the old days or not, we certainly do now. In fact, we'll be singing and dancing it at the upcoming Midwest Grand Sabbat this year. With luck, the Devil's Piper himself will be there to play.

Of the many different versions of this song that exist, what follows is the oldest known to me, given in Medieval French, English translation, and singable English lyrics.

Grab your bagpipe and play along.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Deborah Frankel
    Deborah Frankel says #
    I agree with you about the importance of sacred dance. The dance is a ring dance using grapevine step and a variant of a Faroe Isl
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    On further reflection, Deborah: is the dance is simple enough that it could be communicated verbally to those who haven't seen it?
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    I'm deeply convinced that there's nothing more important than rebuilding for ourselves a corpus of sacred dance. Please do drop a
  • Deborah Frankel
    Deborah Frankel says #
    Hello, Steven. When you gave a ritual workshop a few years ago in California (on the day before PantheaCon), I shared another Fren
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    600 years and still going strong. Now that's a song. Joie de printemps, Steven
EIGHT-SIDED FACE or GROUNDING CRYSTAL - stop, refocus and ground

This week we’ll be discussing Eight-Sided face or Grounding crystals.  Eight-Sided face is a crystal shape that falls into the category of crystals of which you must count the edges of the main face, as we discussed with Channeling crystals. As a reminder, we need to discuss faces (also called facets) and edges of faces.

anatomy of a crystal

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The Black Thread Charm

In 1841, Georg Waitz discovered two magic charms in a 9-10th century codex in the Cathedral Chapter library of Merseburg, the only surviving literary remnants of Old High German heathenry. In the second Merseburg charm, Woten heals a horse's sprain after other gods have failed.

Variants of this charm, with different gods and saints, survive all over northwestern Europe—the Germanies, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Scotland, Shetland, and the Hebrides—but a similar spell preserved from Vedic India suggests that it may be ancient of origin indeed.

The charm is of the type known to scholars as a historiola: what linguist Philip A. Shaw defines as “a charm in which a narrative is employed that in some way represents or symbolises the achievement of the desired outcome of the charm” (Shaw 62). Magic-workers have been harnessing the driving power of story to propel their charms for millennia; modern spell-smiths take note!

 The Old Craft version of the charm cited below invokes, as one would expect, the god of witches in his person of Wild Rider.

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