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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in Reconstruction

Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Minoan Clothing: Ready, Set, Sew!

I've been working on a secret project for a while now. It's finally ready to unveil. But first, I need to give you a little background information.

Those of us who practice Modern Minoan Paganism like to collect up reproductions of Minoan art and artifacts for our altars and shrines. But one thing that's a bit harder to come by is Minoan-style clothing, for those of us who would like to add that aspect to our spiritual practice (or even just for fun).

Over the years, I've sewn a few different garments to use in my Minoan spiritual practice. One of the most fun was this outfit, inspired by one of the Minoan Snake Goddess figurines:

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
The Linear A Conundrum

One of the reasons we don't call Modern Minoan Paganism (MMP) a reconstructionist tradition is that we don't have any texts from Minoan times that we can read to learn how the people of ancient Crete worshiped. Reference texts are a fundamental part of the reconstruction process in many traditions. Why don't we have that resource for MMP?

The Minoans were a literate people; we just can't read what they wrote.

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Reviving Ancient Religion: How does shared gnosis work?

It takes a number of different approaches to build a revivalist spiritual tradition like Modern Minoan Paganism. We started with some of the usual reconstruction methods: ancient artifacts and art; archaeological information about cities, buildings, and homesites; astronomical building and tomb alignments; myth fragments recorded by later writers; dance ethnography; and comparative mythology. But even with all those methods stacked together, we still ended up with holes to fill in order to create a functional modern spiritual practice. In the case of Minoan religion, those holes are pretty big.

What do we use to fill those gaps? Shared gnosis.

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What can we compare Modern Minoan Paganism to?

When people hear about Modern Minoan Paganism, they often ask, "Oh, is that like Wicca but with labryses and that snake goddess?" Um, no.

Granted, a lot of my early Minoan rituals were very Wiccan in flavor, because like many modern Pagans, Wicca is where I started out. So my first book about Minoan spirituality, Ariadne's Thread, has rituals that follow a roughly Wiccan outline. But once we started developing Modern Minoan Paganism as its own thing, we moved away from that framework and to something more in keeping with the way the ancient Minoans probably worshiped. So the rituals in Labrys and Horns are definitely not Wiccan in flavor. (You'll find a discussion of the differences between the two books here.)

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    So, the process is something like: 1. Start with what you know. 2. Garner what you can from scholarship. 3. Adapt scholarship for
  • Laura Perry
    Laura Perry says #
    Essentially, yes. Though in terms of personal gnosis, we do our best to rely only on widely shared gnosis rather than stand-alone
Modern Minoan Paganism: Reviving ancient spirituality

I've been in relationship with the Minoan gods and goddesses since I was a teenager, but it was only a few years ago that Modern Minoan Paganism began to take shape as a specific spiritual path. I've been walking that path with the lovely folks in Ariadne's Tribe, and together we're creating a tradition that works for us as Pagans in the modern world. The hardest part, believe it or not, is explaining what we do to other people.

The name Modern Minoan Paganism gives you a pretty good idea from the start: We're combining the bits and pieces we know about ancient Minoan religion and culture in a modern Pagan context. We can't really reconstruct ancient Minoan religious practice in detail. There are too many gaps in our knowledge, we don't live in the same kind of culture the Minoans did, and we probably don't want to go back to sacrificing bulls and goats (and possibly people) anyway.

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Is Modern Minoan Paganism true for its time?

Joseph Campbell said that all religions are true for their time. Of course, the religion the ancient Minoans practiced had meaning and value in Bronze Age Crete. But what about the spiritual path we're creating with Modern Minoan Paganism? How can we be sure it's true for our time?

First, I should point out that we're not trying to reconstruct ancient Minoan religion - really, we couldn't do a proper reconstruction even if we wanted to because we can't read what the Minoans wrote and we're missing a lot of the original mythology. And even if we did manage to reconstruct it all, it probably wouldn't fit well in our modern world: We have a different lifestyle, value set, and worldview than the Minoans did, even if we're Pagans.

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Modern Minoan Paganism: A How-To

When I first discovered the Pagan community, I never dreamed I'd end up as the facilitator for a new spiritual path, but here we are. Modern Minoan Paganism is a thing and a lot of us are doing it. So what, exactly, are we doing?

Like many Pagan traditions, there are no rules about what you must believe. Some of us are hard polytheists; some of us approach the Minoan deities from a psychological or symbolic perspective. All that really matters is that the connection works, however you make it. The central focus is the Minoan pantheon, the gods and goddesses of ancient Crete who are still very much alive today.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    In "Gods of the Runes" by Frank Joseph the author claims that each rune of the elder Futhark represents one of the Norse gods. Ha
  • Laura Perry
    Laura Perry says #
    Linear B is not actually the Minoan alphabet. It's an adaptation of Linear A, which was the Minoan syllabary, used to write Mycena
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    Yeah, 80 does sound like a bit much unless your talking about every mountain, river and island getting it's own deity. Have fun w
  • Laura Perry
    Laura Perry says #
    Archaeologists continue to discover new Minoan sites all the time; there's some speculation that Crete was more heavily populated

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