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Paths Blogs

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

Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Heathen Visibility Project Year in Review 2020

2020 has been a hard year for making visibility photos and pics because of the restrictions on gatherings and travel. Nevertheless, participants made some images of themselves, altars, objects, and other heathen relevant images.

I talked about the Project on the Witching Hour Spellcast radio show in September, in addition to talking about my new book Asatru: A Beginner's Guide to the Heathen Path. If you missed the show, you can hear the recording on this link: https://www.blogtalkradio.com/witchinghourspellcast/2020/09/28/pammits-porch-erin-lale-asatru-and-the-heathen-visibility-project

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Old Books Part 1: Ravenwolf's Hex Magic

Having stacks and stacks of boxes of books that Tom had had in his box storage room, I have decided to read some older books for the first time. My professional book reviews are of brand new books, and I won't be going into the same kind of detail on these older books here on my blog that I do when I review a new book for a magazine. These reviews will be shorter and more casual.

First up is Silver Ravenwolf's Hex Magic. It's full of spells I do not recommend anyone actually try, because she has taken traditional Penn. Deitsch spells and Wiccanized them in odd ways, and if one wants to learn that type of magic I would recommend learning from Urglaawe magical folk of whatever kind, hexmeisters or whatever. However, Urglaawe wasn't on the net ready to teach people at the time her book was written, and a lot of the personal stories are fascinating snapshots in time.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Erin Lale
    Erin Lale says #
    Thanks. Hadn't heard that story. I haven't thrown any review copies into the garbage but I did throw one across a hotel room once
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    I actually have that book in my collection. I like your phrase "seeing the world through Wicca tinted glasses". Mark Stavish who

Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Candle Augury

A happy candle doesn't flicker. Candles burning in a place with no wind shine with a light as steady as an incandescent light bulb. Or at least they do normally, so, when I had different candles burning in various places in my home during the 12 Days of Yule and one of them consistently guttered no matter where it was placed, it felt like a sign that the power associated with that particular candle was unhappy for some reason. The photo illustrating this blog is that candle, a red pillar candle nestled in a circular candle ornament of plastic mistletoe, an old family decoration I've seen my whole life. As I learned more about heathen mythology I came to associate mistletoe with Baldur so this became the Baldur candle.

Now there are many possible reasons Baldur could be unhappy, starting with, he's dead, and awaiting rebirth into the next universe, which will be better than this one. Like many of the residents of the quiet realm of the goddess Hel, he may not want to be bothered with human concerns and attempts at Yuletide cheer. Perhaps he just wants to be left in peace. I have certainly encountered human dead who don't want to be bothered by the living, even with small sacrifices of candles or toasting. My mom reached that stage fairly quickly, having already reincarnated, and having satisfied herself that I knew that. (See prior post on Reflections on Spiritual Changes Since My Mom's Death.)

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Erin Lale
    Erin Lale says #
    hmm interesting thought.
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    4. Someone else identified with mistletoe; Hodur perhaps, is trying to get through to you.

Posted by on in Paths Blogs

Long time readers of my blog remember me writing about my 2 weddings during the year I was writing Some Say Fire, my unpublishable monstrosity based on heathen mythology. The 2 weddings both took place in that liminal space between sleep and waking, the first one to Loki / Lodhur and the second one to Odin and Honir. Neither time did I actually make wedding vows except to say "Yes, I want that." Neither time did I plan or expect them to happen. Both had been on a 28th of the month and I considered that my month-a-versary. Well, now I have an actual anniversary, and I didn't plan it that way lol. The gods know I sometimes just have random thoughts in my head and they've pretty much just ignored most of them over the years, but they didn't ignore it this time.

By the way, since this blog is Gnosis Diary and I was asked to write it to show what it feels like to do heathenry, I try to write about gnosis here at least occasionally, among my other topics. So anyway, on to the rest of my story.

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
2020: The MMP Blog Greatest Hits

Just like a lot of people, toward the end of December I like to look back over the previous year and review all that has happened. Part of that process involves looking at my blog posts here to see what turned out to be popular and what didn't. That helps me know what people are interested in and where I should put my energy when I'm writing future blog posts. So here's my 2020 Top Ten List.

It's no surprise that my most popular blog post this year is the one that lists the full MMP pantheon. Popular culture leads a lot of people to think that Minoan spirituality is just about the Snake Goddess (those fabulous figurines!) or Ariadne and the Minotaur. But really, there's so much more, and I'm thrilled that folx are checking out all the deities in our pantheon.

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Reflections on Spiritual Changes Since My Mom's Death

A lot has changed over the past year. Obviously, many of the changes are not of a religious nature, but since this is my heathen path blog I'm focusing on the spiritual changes. My mom died in February. That was just before the Covid restrictions started. I was able to hold a normal, traditional wake for her with family who had flown in from out of town and many of her local friends, including the folk dancers and some members of her bridge club. I handled it. It was hard but I handled it. Then I was alone. The lockdowns started and I was alone. And then there was Tom. My companion Tom Newman died in September. More about that in a moment.

I've already blogged a lot about the experiences I've had since mom passed on.

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I know how much my fellow heathens and pagans get annoyed about things being called Christmas that are actually pagan. The upcoming conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn on December 21st 2020 will make the two planets appear as a single bright star to the naked eye, or like a double planet. Since it will be visible just after sundown it will be easier to view than some other sky occurrences, so people are excited about it. I've seen posts on the net saying the media calling it a Christmas star is wrong because it will be on the solstice, not on the 25th. The date of Christmas in the Bible is in lambing season, but the date established for the holiday by the Church as December 25 was supposed to be the solstice.

Christmas was originally established over the date of Roman Saturnalia, or on Sol Invictus (the Romans had multiple gods with overlapping areas of influence just like we heathens), which was on the winter soltice in accordance with the Julian calendar in use at the time. The winter solstice precesses, though. The Gregorian calendar reform re-established the drifted date of Christmas with the solstice. Eastern Orthodox who still follow the Julian calendar have their Christmas on January 7 according to our calendar, the Gregorian. Since the Gregorian calendar reform, the solstice precessed again. So the dates of Christmas and the solstice are off again, but they aren't supposed to be. Christmas was supposed to be on the solstice, so calling it a Christmas Star is not really wrong.
 
However, it is not going to look like a cross in the sky. It's going to look like a double planet, or if you have a telescope, like two planets close to each other.
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