Signs & Portents

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Pagan News Beagle: Watery Wednesday, March 23

A Pagan tackles one of the most popular ideas about St. Patrick's Day. A heathen talks about Loki's "roads." And we take a look at modern Greek polytheism. It's Watery Wednesday, our weekly segment on news about the Pagan community. All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!

St. Patrick, a Romano-British Christian sold into slavery as a teenager, is known for several things. Paving the way for Ireland's Christianization is one. "Driving out the snakes" is another. To many Pagans, "snakes" is an obvious code word for druids. But is that really the case? Jason Pitzl-Waters takes a look.

Some gods come in one, very strong flavor. Zeus, for example, is the patriarch of the Greek pantheon with all the baggage and power that brings. Isis is a mother goddess who cares both for life at large and her son in particular. But other gods serve a multitude of complex roles. Dagulf Loptson discusses those roles or "roads" in respect to Loki, the Heathen god of trickery, magic, and fire.

Pagan festival Many Gods West is preparing their next event for this year. If you're thinking of attending, they've recently announced their catalog of presentations. You can read about them here.

Although mild in comparison to the Republican primaries, the electoral fight between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders for the Democratic Party nomination has become increasingly divisive over time. Normally, Pagans try to avoid mixing politics and religion. But sometimes it's hard to avoid when phrases like "Bern the Witch" becomes a slogan for the supporters of one candidate.

Heathenry may be slightly more popular among modern American Pagans but there's little denying the cultural significance and cachet of the ancient Greek religion, often called Hellenismos, which dominated the classical Mediterranean. Now, modern Greeks are looking to revive the religion and Vice has chosen to take a closer look at what's driving the revivalists.

Top image by YSEE

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Aryós Héngwis (or the more modest Héngwis for short) is a native of the Pontic-Caspian steppe, born some 5000 years ago, near the village of Dereivka. In his youth he stood out from the other snakes for his love of learning and culture, eventually coming into the service of the local reǵs before moving westward toward Europe. Most recently, Aryós Héngwis left his home to pursue a new life in America, where he has come under the employ of BBI Media as an internet watchdog (or watchsnake, if you will), ever poised to strike the unwary troll.


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