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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in Pagan virtues

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
How's Your Honor?

The Virtues* are central to most Old Pagan systems of ethics, and chief among them is Honor.**

How's yours?

 

What do others say about you?

What do those that know you well say about you?

What do those that know you less than well say about you?

How good is your word?

If you say you'll do something, do you follow through?

If you take an oath, do you keep it?

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  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    "Honor is longer than life." (James Stephens)
  • Murphy Pizza
    Murphy Pizza says #

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
People of No Honor

In Ireland of old, there was a practice known as “fasting on” someone, and this was the way of it.

If someone had wronged you, you would sit at his or her doorstep, and keep a fast. There you would sit, if needful, to the death.

This was accounted by the ancestors as a powerful tool of persuasion and justice, even against kings.

For Hospitality is chief of virtues, and it were accounted a grave breach of it, that an unarmed stranger should die of famine at one's very doorstep, and the shame of it upon the house forever.

Nor might one take up violence against the faster, for this also was held a grave dishonor to the house.

But in these days there is neither sitting-out nor fasting-on.

For those that rule are accounted by all as people of no hospitality, as people of no honor.

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  • Murphy Pizza
    Murphy Pizza says #
    I'll look into that...thanks!
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    Let me just add that the single best treatment of a virtue-based pagan ethics that I know of in the Literature is the chapter on t
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    So let it be written, so let it be done.
  • Murphy Pizza
    Murphy Pizza says #
    Oh not on the Irish tradition...I know of that.. ..I mean write more on what it means for us in the community to be hospitable an
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    I was writing from memory, Murphy; I'll see if I can pull together some sources for you. Meanwhile, for a paradigmatic example of

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Making the Gods a Priority

When's the last time that you went out of your way for the gods?

Hospitality, Courage, Generosity: even in our times of political incivility and social dissolution, we find these ancestral virtues admirable.

Piety, not so much.

Piety: making the gods a priority in your life.

Piety is a little-valued virtue in our day. When you look at the way that many supposedly pious people act, one can certainly see why we've come to view piety as ostentatious, restrictive hyper-religiosity.

But the ancestors felt differently. For them, piety was among the foremost of virtues.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Hate Makes a Bad Master

The news in America is hard to hear these days, and one sees others differently.

We all feel hatred from time to time, and probably that's as it should be. Sometimes it may even be a good. Surely it is good to hate injustice. Surely it is good to hate the wrong. Perhaps—the voices of the ancestors do not speak unanimously here—there are even times when it is right to hate other people.

But the ancestors never numbered hatred among the virtues. Love, however, is counted so. It is virtuous to love. To hate, though—appropriate though it may be—can never be a virtue.

While a virtue, though, love remains, in and of itself, insufficient. Love is not all we need. One virtue can never be enough; we need them all. To give away everything that one owns may be exemplary Generosity, but when one's family starves because of it, we have thereby acted unvirtuously because we have failed in Responsibility. Not to mention Love.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The Mess in Texas

So: a hate group in Texas mounts an art show featuring cartoons of the Muslim prophet.

At the urging of a local imam, the local Muslim community decides to respond with silence. No one pickets, blogs, editorializes, or writes about it in the press. No one does anything whatsoever to give the show any publicity.

An expatriate American who has gone to Syria to fight for the So-Called So-Called spreads word of the show on the web, urging retaliation.

Two Muslim converts from another state drive to Texas, wound a security guard, and are themselves killed. “Allah, accept your mujahideen,” one tweets.

The So-Called So-Called claims responsibility.

As one who strives to live in accordance with the thews (virtues) of the ancestors, I ask myself:

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  • Greybeard
    Greybeard says #
    [This comment has been removed by Aryós Héngwis]
  • Aryós Héngwis
    Aryós Héngwis says #
    Your comments are trending remarkably close to Islamophobia. While the actions of the Islamic State / ISIL are deplorable, there's
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    The FBI defines a hate group as one whose "primary purpose is to promote animosity, hostility, and malice against persons belongin
  • Renet
    Renet says #
    You should dig a little deeper and know of the fundraising at that same location not long before by muslims. The Art show, which i
  • Aryós Héngwis
    Aryós Héngwis says #
    Hate speech is a form of violence though a lesser form than violent assault and murder. I think it's fair to describe both groups
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