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Paths Blogs

Specific paths such as Heathenism, blended traditions, polytheist reconstructionism, etc.

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Asatru FAQ: Bad Ancestors

FAQ: I want to be a good heathen and honor ancestors but my ancestors were bad people. Who can I honor?

Related FAQ: I'm going to be attending a sumbel in which there will be a round toasted to the ancestors, but I was adopted and don't know my ancestors' names. Who can I honor?

My answer: One can honor Askr and Embla, the first man and woman according to heathen mythology (made by Odin and his brothers.) One could also honor any gods that appear in one's family tree. According to heathen mythology, everyone is descended from Rig, whom most Asatruars consider to be an aspect of Heimdall, thus, anyone could honor Heimdall. There might also be other gods one could include among ancestors, depending on one's family line. I have honored Lollus as an ancestor.

You don't have to honor your literal biological ancestors to be a good heathen. When the sumbel horn is passed in the ancestor round, you can honor the mighty dead whom you admire whether you are lineally related to them or not. You can honor your personal heroes, the elders of your path, a writer who influenced you-- that's my personal hope of ever being remembered, since I have no children. You can honor the founders of your nation, city, profession, or art. Honor your spouse's ancestors. Toast your favorite childhood teacher, the composer of your favorite song, or anyone with whom you have an emotional connection.

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  • Victoria
    Victoria says #
    Victoria Wednesday, 14 August 2019 · I honour the mothers and fathers of my ancestral lineage. Heathens get too wrapped up in in

Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Blue Moon Myth

Blue Moon Creation Myth

 

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The Perils of Putting Our Leaders on Pedestals

written by Lady Mary Malinski, the High Maiden of ATC-Canada

http://walkswithin.com/2019/05/the-perils-of-putting-our-leaders-on-pedestals/

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs

“It is not the world who is mute, but rather we who are deaf.”  

Thus I wrote, several years back, in my book of Christian Animism.   I meant it – really, I did – but more as a rhetorical flourish than a statement from experience.  Now, the experience is kicking in.

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
A Present from Hel

I was in my garden digging planting holes. This had been the asparagus bed for years, but it hadn’t produced any spears this spring and my mom wanted to put petunias there. I turned over several asparagus crowns, flat with thick roots. I wanted to replant them, give them a chance to see if they would grow again. I wasn’t thinking about last week’s ritual.

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Incense for Ancient Minoans and Modern Pagans

Like so many other ancient cultures, the Minoans used incense in a sacred setting. Though we can't be certain of the exact uses, it appears that they burned incense as offerings and to purify sacred areas such as ritual rooms, altars, and shrines. These were common practices in the Bronze Age Mediterranean region.

They didn't have the incense sticks and cones that so many of us are familiar with; those are self-igniting due to their saltpeter content. Just hold a flame to the end and voila, incense smoke! What they did have was hot coals and chopped or powdered incense mixtures.

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Taking Refuge in Reality

Five of us, variously exhausted or uplifted, sat distributed on couches in the interview room. Our meditation teacher was checking in with us in the midst of a week-long silent retreat. One by one we responded. As usual, there were the usual happy yogis who had reached new heights of concentration, complete with interesting spiritual effects. The rest of us were detailing our rather more mundane struggles with the practice: distractions, obsessive thoughts, doubts. I had just finished adding my troubles to the pile when the teacher sent me a level look and said: “This is how it is right now.”

 

This is how it is right now. The whole of the Dharma in seven words.

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