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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in Grail
Avalon: The Building of a Vegan Pagan Legend

A lesson that I keep on learning in life is that even the worst things usually have some sort of benefit to be wrestled from them with skill, patience, grace, or often luck. One such blessing was my ability to fulfill an adulthood-long dream to attend some of the Glastonbury Goddess Conference this year. Due to social distancing and travel restrictions and all, this was one of many annual events that transitioned to fully virtual. Sure, not everything works as well. Yet, some things work even better. I sat in (zoom) circles with women and men from Germany, Sweden, Portugal, Belgium, Australia, England (of course) and more to discuss everything from the loss of children to owning our power--writing sacred stories and manifesting peace. Of course, it awakened my own past meanderings through my internal isle of Avalon, where (doubly of course) everything is vegan like me! Here's the apple isle as I see it. If you read to the end, you will see that I've solved the riddle of that infamous quest, "Who does the Grail serve, and what is its purpose?" Read ahead at your peril. (JK there's no peril).

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Cauldron Quest

The good news: there's finally a good (i.e. historically trustworthy) book about the Grail.

The bad news: if you're looking for deep pagan mysteries, there aren't any. The Grail is entirely a product of the Christian imagination.

To put it differently: in the seething cauldron that is the human imagination, Grail lore is a stew made from Christian ingredients, with only the merest hint of pagan seasoning.

In medievalist Richard Barber's masterful The Holy Grail: Imagination and Belief, Barber traces the origin of the Grail, term and motif, from its entirely orthodox Christian beginnings in late 12th century northern France to its transubstantiation into a secular (and, latterly, new pagan) symbol in the 20th and 21st centuries. It's a fascinating ride.

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  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    Living cultures have the wisdom to learn from one another. So far as I can tell, that's how we've always done it. Come to think of
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    Well, that's actually quite refreshing. I thought it was a stretch to link the grail to Cerridwen's cauldron. Why not Dagda's ca
Eriu, returning to the great cauldron.

 

Arthurian tales tell us of the Holy Grail, not the cup of Christ, but a sacred vessel, a symbol of the goddess at the heart of the land, the sacred womb which sits in the centre of Annwfn- ‘the deep place’ of Welsh myth.  In earlier tales it was a cauldron as mentioned in Preiddeu Annwn ‘The spoils of Annwn’, a poem by Taliesin as a great vessel at the heart of the land which was ’kindled’ by the breath of nine maidens, or priestesses. Here we find the sacred source, the well of Segais in Irish myth, the place where life and wisdom spring eternal and renewed. A sacred place at the centre of things.

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The Male Cauldron

 (Rant Alert)

Och, have we all been brain-raped by Sigmund Freud?

Has our worldview become so simplistically sexualized that we've lost the ability to see the plain sense of things?

As pagan dogmas go, it doesn't get much more dogmatic.

Cauldron = female. Cunny. Womb.

Period.

 As a quick glance at mythology demonstrates, the ancestors knew a rather more nuanced world.

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  • Erin Lale
    Erin Lale says #
    You're welcome! I remember the giant's name now. It's Hymir. The story is named for him, Hymiskvitha. Here's a link: http://www.sa
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    Excellent, Erin, I'd completely forgotten this story: as you say, fishing for the Midgard Serpent overshadows the rest of it. Anot
  • Erin Lale
    Erin Lale says #
    The story of Thor's kettle isn't lost at all. It's just contained in another story with multiple elements, and it's only his tempo
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    I read this post and immediately thought of Andrew Zimmer and his Bizarre Foods shows on the Travel Channel. There are a lot of g

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The Grail Mysteries

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