Pagan Paths


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Paths Blogs

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

One of the frequent questions I get from budding Heathens is "Where do I start?" . After fielding two such questions in the same day from a divination client and prospective student, I began this series of articles. More resources can be found on my website.


 Shirl Sazynski_Come With Me Love

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Remember Who You Wanted to Be

I saw those words on a bumper sticker this morning and they made me cry. Why? Because in the last year, who I wanted to be got overshadowed by who other people needed me to be. Things that were important to me, like working with my tarot cards, writing my books, articles and blogs, knitting my sweaters, and playing with my clay got shoved to the back burner while I performed duties that others needed of me. My New Year's resolution was to find myself again, and by gods, I'm going to do just that. 

Within the next few weeks I'm returning to a project that I started nearly three years ago. I make pottery masks, and I have always wanted to do a series on the tarot. I think embarking on the whole deck may be a bit ambitious--at least at the start--but I do think I can execute the creation of the majors, all embodied in a 'green man' type of wall-hanging. It feels good to have a vision, and a goal, again. 

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Charlie Rainbow Wolf
    Charlie Rainbow Wolf says #
    Thank you! So far I've got several of the majors 'in my head,' and I've thought of doing tiles and perhaps even little figurine /
  • Sarah Avery
    Sarah Avery says #
    What an exciting project! I wish you all the best. Long ago, I knew a man who would ask anyone he thought might need the question,
Why It's Time to End the 1700 Year "Smear Campaign" Against Vesta

Let me ask you a question: How do you feel when you're sitting by a crackling fire? Whether it's a campfire under a starry sky or a fireplace in a book-lined living room, the feelings are the same. Warmth. Comfort. Well-being. Wonder and awe as you stare into the shifting, roaring orange flame, watching it snake around the wood and snap embers into the air. It almost feels...sacred.

People who lived before us -- and not all that long before us -- felt the same sense of reverence. Fire lit and warmed their homes, and served as the focus of family life. Fire was so important and inspirational that they gave it a name and an identity -- Vesta, beloved goddess of the home, hearth and domestic life. Symbolized by a flame, she lived in the household fire.

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[I was asked recently to develop a talk which could be delivered as a sermon, using ancient Egyptian sacred texts and ideas.  Here is Part 2 of that talk. Read Part 1 here]

b2ap3_thumbnail_Osiris-2.JPGSo, what is all this about Osiris?  I don’t know about you, but there are some times when I have felt very beat up by life, even broken in pieces the way Set did Osiris.  I have felt lost, scattered all over like Osiris’ body parts all over Egypt.  I have felt swept by the flood downstream and out to sea, completely overwhelmed.  Like Isis, I have wandered from place to place and through the desert, trying to find all the missing pieces of myself and trying to figure out how to put them back together again.  Anyone else felt that too?  It feels dark, doesn’t it?  Everything out there begins to look like a crocodile, or a singing snake, maybe.  We wish we had a handbook for getting through the dark. 

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Why Rituals Matter - My Public Grief

It was Monday, January 5th, 2015. I was working on a blog about daily practices when my brother sent me a message on Facebook. It simply and succinctly said "If you want to see dad, you better come now". If you've ever gotten that call or email, you know that life completely slows down and goes really fast all at the same time. I've tried to describe the feeling to folks that haven't had this experience and the closest thing I can compare it to is suddenly finding yourself underwater trying to have a conversation with a world full of people that are still on dry land.

The next twenty-four hours were a blur of phone calls and airports and moments of snatched sleep and worry and sitting awkwardly between two strangers and hurtling through the air at several hundred miles an hour. When I finally breathed fresh air again, I was seven thousand miles from home, in New Zealand, and just like that winter had turned to summer and the east was in the west and the moon was upside down.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Gwion Raven
    Gwion Raven says #
    Natasha, I think honouring him in the traditional was is so wonderful.
  • Natasha Kostich
    Natasha Kostich says #
    Thank you so much for sharing your grief publicly. I lost my wonderful father five months ago and while I am a Pagan I have chosen
  • Gwion Raven
    Gwion Raven says #
    Oh Pixie, it is hard isn't it. I simply love that you've taken the urn and made art from it. Talk about transformational! Gwion
  • Pixie
    Pixie says #
    My partner was in hospice and died in November and I'm also attempting to make death/dying and grief more public, so I made a crem

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JUGGLING WITH SEMANTICS

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b2ap3_thumbnail_imbolc.jpgThe last holiday of the Vanic year (as the Vanic new year is the spring equinox) is called Rasthuas Ja'enladata (RAHS-thoo-ahs JIGH-en-lah-dah-tah) [in Eshnesk, the language of the Eshnahai, or citizens of Vanaheim) - translated as Lights of the Winter Storm, observed in early February, where lights are burned through the worst winter storms of the year as a reminder that soon the spring will come.  This is the holiday where the Queen's half of the year and time of influence begins, power rising again in anticipation of the spring.

The Queen arrives at the ritual site at the capital, wearing a crown with unlit candles.  A representative from each of the twenty-four tribes wields a wand and draws down light from the stars to light each candle. When all the candles are lit in the crown, the Queen lights a candle for each of the tribes to bless them, as the King dances around the Queen, spinning fire, a token of offering his power so that the Queen's power may rise. When all of the tribal candles are lit, the Queen removes the crown and places it on the snow, and the King and Queen mate ritually on the stone table in the sacred circle; the first sign of green growth appears, rising up in the circle of the crown, which will survive the rest of the cold season.  The mating of the King and Queen empowers the candles with light and life and the gift of joy.  When the mating is done, the tribal representatives take their candles and each tribal candle is used to light a candle for every individual within that tribe, so the Queen's light is given to all of Vanaheim and the land can begin to thaw from the winter and people's spirits can be lifted in hope.

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