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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in offerings

The news came at work, in a text from my fiance: Oregon's ban on gay marriage has been overturned, and the state is issuing marriage licenses to gay couples effective immediately.

It's big news for us, because it means when we say our vows next September we'll be able to do it on Oregon soil--or, in our case, sand, because we want to be married on the beach. I immediately have to go lock myself in a bathroom and cry a little bit, because up until this moment I wasn't convinced it was really going to happen.

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  • Stephen M. Stirling
    Stephen M. Stirling says #
    That's a touching and well-written piece. It's sad about your mother, of course, but congratulations on your upcoming vows.
  • Carol P. Christ
    Carol P. Christ says #
    thanks for your piece. so touching.

Posted by on in Culture Blogs

What's the best way to leave food offerings?

Libations are simple: one pours directly onto the ground.

Food offerings, though, are a little more difficult. If there's a sacred fire present, one can burn them, but what if there isn't? It seems rude to lay them directly on the ground. (If I offered you a sandwich and set it on the floor in front of you, how would you feel?) To set out food offerings in non-bio-degradable containers pollutes both physically and spiritually. What to do?

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  • Grant
    Grant says #
    This has been something which has been on my mind for some time as well, still now and in the past, I have always layed my food of
  • Linette
    Linette says #
    I live in the wilderness, and I have some stones I lay my offerings on. They are always well received by the local wildlife who le
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    Writer Paul Tuiteann (reborn to the people) once told me, "Circles and house wards are all fine and good, but if you really want t
  • Terence P Ward
    Terence P Ward says #
    This tradition seems to be carried forward by restaurateurs, as well.
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    "...served on a bed of greens." Sounds good to me.

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
On Offerings

I suppose I should weigh in on the offerings and consumption of said offerings. I give Loki a fair amount of food and drink. He enjoys the extravagant gesture, but having spent time starving in a cave (still starving, since time is not linear for Him and everything is happening, has happened, will happen) He doesn't really care for the wasting of food in my personal experience. Furthermore, my ancestors, particularly the ones who lived through the Great Depression, would have a coronary if I dumped lots of food regularly. If I have an excess of food, or more of a meal than I can eat, there is always someone who is hungry in my local community.

I have one exception to this: alcohol. I feed Loki more booze than I could ever consume (or should). So that gets poured out when He's done with it. It's likewise for other Deities that I offer alcohol to as well.

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Freyr altar with offerings- Shirl Sazynski

Americans still haven't celebrated our secular harvest holiday yet (Thanksgiving)-- which  marks the unofficial change from autumn to winter, even if the official shift falls on the Solstice. So I think it's still appropriate to honor Freyr, especially at lower latitudes.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Local spending is intentional spending

Whether it's your local metaphysical shop, farmer's market, or hardware store, buying local is an easy path to intentional spending.  The 3/50 Project is my preferred method of encouraging local spending, because once you get past the sometimes-confusing name, it's an easy way to redirect existing money to local businesses.

The 3/50 concept is this:  take fifty bucks each month, and spread it around three local businesses instead of using it at chain stores, franchises, or online.  The project has a pretty specific definition of local business that focuses on the amount of money which stays in the community.  One thing I like about the concept is that it stresses balance -- don't avoid big-box stores entirely, if that's where you get the best deals on some items, but do spend some money in businesses owned and operated by your neighbors.

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  • Lizann Bassham
    Lizann Bassham says #
    Thank you! A wonderful way of remembering that our spending is a spiritual practice!
  • Terence P Ward
    Terence P Ward says #
    Thank you! We spend all the time, and I'm sure that's the mystery of money: turning its flow into something more powerful than t
  • Jamie
    Jamie says #
    This is an absolutely wonderful idea! Helping our local businesses makes the world where we live a better place. Thank you for sh

Posted by on in Paths Blogs
More Devotional Q&A

 

It's been a crazy couple of weeks, folks, with lots of ritual work to be done as we move into fall. While we always honor our ancestors at the beginning of our rituals, autumn tends to be a a time when we focus even more strongly on our dead and that means a lot more rituals. I love it, but boy have I been busy!  Autumn really is, for me, the best season. It's so vibrant and finally after an entire summer of positively aching for fall, i've started smelling the teasing promise of crispness in the air, the faint sense of crisping decay as the leaves ever so slightly show the first signs of their inevitable decay. I love it. Of course, I also love that questions on ritual and praxis keep rolling in. I've gotten quite a bit of good feedback on this series and I'm enjoying it greatly. Y'all have been sending in some really thoughtful questions and I find crafting my answers makes me look at my own practice in new ways too. I thank you, my readers for that gift. For today's Q&A, I have a series of questions on how to handle offerings from reader Lenore. 

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  • Natasha Kostich
    Natasha Kostich says #
    Good questions! I also want to add that the more you do altar work the more confident you become. As time goes on, you will trust
  • Terence P Ward
    Terence P Ward says #
    Rather than being inane, Lenore's questions are probably among the first anyone has! As I read your answers, I found myself addin

This is going to be a fairly short and sweet post. I’ve been getting the same question via email again and again –and it’s a good question, don’t’ get me wrong---so I figure I should probably answer it. Lately everyone is asking me what to do with offerings be it to the ancestors, the Gods, or the house spirits once you’ve put them out.  

It really is a good question the answer to which I tend to take for granted as a given. It’s not though and since most of us don’t grow up (yet) in families that make regular offerings, there’s no reason that we should automatically know what to do with them. There’s so much about religious traditions and culture that we learn by observation, experience, and osmosis as we grow after all, and we’re not yet at that point as a community. I think in time we will be, but for now, thank the Gods for books, blogs, and teachers!

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  • Anomalous Thracian
    Anomalous Thracian says #
    Very good topic, Galina. I like how you point out the practicality of these practices -- that is essential. "Tradition serves life

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