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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in pagan gods

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
How Do You Know When a God Is a God?

Every pagan knows that there are gods walking among us: seen, unseen, and (most often of all, I suspect), seen but unrecognized.

So how do you tell when that radiantly beautiful guy across the street, or the old woman that just happened to whisper exactly the right thing in your ear, is one of us or one of...Them?

According to the sages of India, there are three things to look for.

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  • Murphy Pizza
    Murphy Pizza says #
    Its true about Jesus of Nazareth (we.were.forced to watch it every Lent); Powell has these remarkable icy blue eyes, and not once

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Theographies

In the intellectual adventure that is modern paganism, we've reached a pretty significant milestone.

We've actually created a new literary genre: the theography.*

I'll define a theography as, broadly, a book about a specific god.**

Some contemporary theographies are anthologies, with contributions by various writers. Others are a single author's tribute to a particular god.

I'm reading one such now.

I'm enjoying the book. My relationship with my own patron being what it is, I'm always interested to hear what other people have to say about their relationships with theirs.

Every theography must balance traditional lore with contemporary experience, and this author does a good job of doing just that. The book is both well-written and entertaining, with hymns, stories, rituals, and a thorough bibliography. All in all, it's much what you would want from a theography: both informative and useful.

But something is missing here. It's not so much what is being said as what isn't.

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Designing With The Divine

Sometimes when I make art, I take on the role of psychopomp - creating art for the dying and deceased, as well as those left behind: a death mask for a dying man, a painted mailbox for a gravesite for a young teen, portraits of beloved pets who have left this world. 

Sometimes my art leads me to the path of the Oracle, creating work for clients to help clear their paths that starts with a Tarot reading and ends with a painting or talisman: finding or defining a vocation, marking a new beginning, or helping to find resolution in the past so that new work can begin.  

Sometimes when I am making art, I am the Witch and Conjurer. I pull from my own inner visions to create images and unravel myths.  I can simultaneously make works for myself, for everyone, for anyone, and for no one at all, weaving the materials into spells and stories.  There is all of the meaning to be unlocked - or none at all, seen and unseen. Much of my work tends to fall into this category. 

And sometimes when I make art, I am the Priest and Priestess. The process goes beyond communing with the media, materials, and inklings of visions, and becomes a conversation with Someone Else. You can call it Spirit, God, Goddess, the Mighty Dead, the Ancestors, but those are just labels that help us grasp Them. I have worked with Many over the years - pretty much from every path that you can think of.  Sometimes it is for a client, who has been called to have a certain piece (or pieces) of artwork on their altar by their Patron/Matron.  Other times, I'll be working on a concept and it will have the effect of calling in Someone new (or old).  

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Text Messages of the Gods

So, I heard about a guy who gets text messages from his patron deity.

Text messages.

My initial impulse was to roll my eyes and think, “Pagans.” To misquote G. K. Chesterton, “Once people start believing, they don't just believe in something; they'll believe in anything.”

But I've begun to reconsider.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Do We Know the Number of the Gods?

 

It would be rash to say that we do. One should be content with a reasonable number.” 

 

Ezra Pound, “Religion: Or the Child's Guide to Knowledge”

1885-1972

In Memoriam

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The Gods are among us

For Pagan Spirit Gathering this year, one of my workshops really isn't work to me. It's more of further expressing a part of myself I ordinarily am unable to do. I'm one of those extreme extroverts the introverted either are are okay with me in small doses or are straight up annoyed with. That's just who I am, and yeah, I do try to rein in my personality some, but I don't always succeed in that. I'm not any type of activist really, or hardlined into politics, or get overly enthused with intellectual stuff. (Not saying I'm stupid or less than worldly, but academia has its place... over there - something to occasionally peruse from a shelf.) In all honesty, I'm just your typical urban American who also happens to be Pagan, which I've come to find over the last couple of decades usually goes the other way around.

So this workshop - it allows me to be me in a big way. I did it for the first time last year, and it was well-received, but there were definitely bugs to work out. What is it? It's hosting a photobooth for the big party known as Pan's Ball. And yeah, that's how I've always seen it - a party. A drunken barn dance. An outdoor night club. A costume party. A kegger in the woods without the keg. For those who follow the Hellenic path, it was much more than that; it was a ritual. And this year, one of the main features has been changed up in order to keep everyone safe and happy - taking out the punch (aka Jungle Juice). There was a very long discussion over the change, which also included starting the festivities early and kicking it off with a costume parade. Sure, it's still BYOB, and yeah, we'll actually be able to see some of the costumes since it'll still be daylight during the parade, but for some folks who preferred the old way of doing things, it was a disappointment. Change is hard, but for those who saw Pan's Ball as a ritual, I'm certain things can be adjusted to bring the ritual part back into it.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

 Whatever happened to the Thunderer?

The ancestors knew him well: Thor, Perkunas, Perun, Jupiter, Zeus, Ba'al, Enlil, Indra, they called him. The heathens in their wisdom honor him to this day. His name lives on the tongue of every English-speaker: Thunder. And in the many-colored world itself, of course, he's never gone away: his rains still fall, if not quite as they always have.

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