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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in offerings

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The Divine Economy

If I had to characterize Kirk S. Thomas' Sacred Gifts: Reciprocity and the Gods in only two words, it would be: “accessibly profound.”

Don't be put off—as I initially was—by his bantering tone, hyper-colloquial diction, or home-spun analogies. This book speaks as an incisive work of contemporary pagan scholarship and philosophy, and (best of all) points the way forward for future pagan thought.

There can be no relationship without communication. How, then, do we communicate with the gods?

In Sacred Gifts, Thomas answers this question elegantly and authoritatively by beginning with a careful examination of ancestral precedent. From these specifics, he deduces the general principles of the divine economy.

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Unpacking Piety

Do ut des means “I give so that you may give.” It is one of the defining points of Roman polytheism, and it is the most important. It is in these 3 Latin words that we can lay out how the Romans viewed their Gods. It is in these 3 Latin words that we can lay out a different approach than what we likely grew up with in regard to relationships with the Gods and society as a whole.

Ask someone in the Pagan community about Roman polytheism and you will regularly hear that it was contractual to the point of lifelessness. Actually, ask a lot of Roman polytheists the same, and they will repeat that statement as well, preferring to take the outdated tone of early scholars of the Roman religion, who regularly were Christian and carrying on a long tradition of upholding their perceived superiority through biased writing and opinion.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
A Pouring to Thunder

Yikes! Pagan Spirit Gathering 2015 canceled in mid-run due to flooding and rainstorms past and predicted.

What's a pagan response? On the immemorial principle of do ut des, a gift for a gift, perhaps we need to begin our outdoor gatherings with an offering to the god concerned.

Well, you know gods. The answer may still be “no.”

But it never hurts to ask.

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The Simplest - And Sweetest - of Mealtime Rituals

There are two things I really love about the New Vesta tradition.  The first is the way it bridges the distance between the ancient world and the modern world.  The second is the way it helps strengthen family solidarity.  And one of the simplest ways it does these things is through mealtime offerings or libations.

Even in antiquity, Vesta – goddess of the home and hearth, and symbolized by a flame – was a bloodless religion.  Instead of making a living animal sacrifice, ancient Roman families sprinkled mealtime offerings of loose salted flour or wafers (called mola salsa) into her sacred flame that burned in their household hearth.  Libations of wine or olive oil could also be made into her flame.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs


One of the things that I have added to my practice over the last several years is to give offerings to the spirits, the Ancestors, and the Gods who inhabit my world and who I work with .Before I left for Kaleidoscope gathering in Canada this year, I ‘put my working altar to bed’. I tidied and dusted it,  put the skulls away and requested that the spirits rest but be watchfull while I was away and in turn promised to bring them back gifts if they would do so.  I did not want my house sitter to feel uncomfortable while she was staying but I also wanted my house to be proteted.  Apparently I was so successful at this that my cat, who it could be said, is also a spirit, also spend the entire month in the hall cupboard and only came out when my lovely house sitter was asleep or out of the house.. but I digress

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • J'Karrah
    J'Karrah says #
    I give daily offerings of fire and incense to our family gods. I try to choose scents depending on the season (light, airy and fl
  • Mistress Polly
    Mistress Polly says #
    ohh i have not thought of them an an indulgence.. most interesting place to come from.. *ponders this*.. might have to spend some
  • Jamie
    Jamie says #
    Mistress Polly, Another great post! Glad you had another nice visit to North America. I try to offer things related to the sphe
  • Linette
    Linette says #
    I do offerings. To remind me, when I get confused on the issue, that I am part of this whole event we refer to as The Universe.

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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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • 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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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • 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.

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