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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in thunder god

Posted by on in Studies Blogs
Storm-Warding Charms and Rituals

Florence is pounding at the coastline of the Carolinas as I write. If you’ve been watching meteorologists’ predictions this past week, you’ll have noticed how frequently and wildly projections of her path have changed. She is a massive, powerful, and unpredictable force. Storms like Florence remind us of Mother Nature’s terrible power and that, in spite of all our cunning and advanced technology, we cannot control her; we remain subject to her, a small part of the greater tapestry of teeming, whirling life.

My neighbors’ parents live in Charleston and have come to stay with them to escape the worst of the storm. But even here, some 300 miles from the Virginia coast and buffeted by the ancient Appalachian peaks, we’re still anticipating winds up to 35 miles per hour and three to five inches of rain – nothing compared to our easterly neighbors, but a shock nonetheless for a region that doesn’t often see hurricanes. And, considering how our valley is predisposed to flooding and has already received quite a bit of rain in the past week, we’re all more than a little nervous, wondering how Florence will treat us when she arrives at our doorstep. It’s the subject of every half-overheard conversation I pass by. I can feel it coming – the sky is a mass of mottled gray; the winds are cooler and more persistent; there’s a tension in the air itself, as if every tree and bird and beast is bracing itself for the impact.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    I live in Colonial Heights a town south of Richmond. Florence turned south and will miss most of Virginia. I did no storm wardin
  • The Cunning Wife
    The Cunning Wife says #
    That's great! I love hearing about others' rituals and traditions. At the time I was writing this post, it did look like Florence

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Thunder Prayer: Grand Sabbat 2018

On the first evening of this summer's Grand Convocation of the Midwest Tribe of Witches, we turned our faces to the West and chanted a prayer to Thunder (see below) asking for good weather during our get-together.

Among the gods, Thunder in particular is well-known to have a taste for hard liquor. At prayer's end, we poured out an entire bottle of Jameson whiskey in libation.

That, believe me, was a sacrifice felt by everyone.

Throughout the three following days of our gathering, the weather was absolutely beautiful.

During the feast on Sunday evening, we heard a roll of thunder from the north. A rainbow appeared in the eastern sky. This was followed by a second roll of thunder from the southern sky.

No rain, however, fell.

Monday afternoon, I had a phone message from a friend who had remained on-site, calling to report that (everyone having packed up and left), it had finally begun to rain.

Gently, as it happens.

If you ask me, the money laid out for that bottle of Jamie was money well spent.

Every single penny.

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If Pagans Had a Special Day of the Week, Which Would It Be?

The week, of course, is a collective fiction, and personally I say: Be damned to it.

But if, say, in proper Keeping-Up-With-the-Cowans mode, we wanted to pick a day of the week to be special to pagans, which would it be?

Oddly enough, Received Tradition does seem to speak with a uniform voice on the matter.

That day would be Thursday.

This makes sense. Thunder, great power that he is, was accounted chief of gods in most of the old pantheons, as well he might be: He of the Mighty Voice and Arm, “giver of both life and death.”

Some, indeed, offer to him each Thursday to this day. But more than this, the Lore across Europe counts Thursday a fortunate day: Lucky Thursday.

Take, for example—good old Carmina Gadelica—this charming rhyme from the Hebrides. I've tweaked it only slightly.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Children of Thunder

During a power outage, you can always tell where the pagans live.

Just look for the candlelight.

A big Thunderstorm blew through one night. Lights were out all over south Minneapolis.

My boyfriend at the time lived just down the street. I walked over. We undressed and stood holding each other.

He looked into my face.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Seven Inches of Sacredness

In my religion, snow is sacred.

Try to remember that.

It's late winter. It's been a cold winter, and winter in Minnesota is always too long. The Sun climbs higher in the sky every day, the buds are starting to swell, and the redbirds are singing their spring song (“Pretty bird! Pretty bird!”), but spring is still only a hope on the rose-red dawn horizon. We're coming up on the snowiest time of year.

So it's good to be reminded that snow is a gift.

We call Him Thunder for His Voice, but you could call Him Storm. In summer, He gives His good gift of rain; in winter, snow.

Ah, beautiful snow. Look closely and you'll see that it's actually every color but white. Snow is a wonder, so varied, so full of character: light, heavy, wet, dry, granular, fluffy. “The higher the snow, the higher they grow,” they say, meaning, of course, the crops. It's a true saying, too.

Against winter cold, snow makes the best insulation. That's the paradox of snow: it's cold, but keeps us warm.

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How Thunder Slew the Three-Headed Giant

They say there was once a three-headed giant named Motho.

Well, that's what they say.

You know giants: they're greedy. Motho just couldn't be content until everyone, everywhere, was his slave.

He went through the whole world, chaining the people. Wherever he went, balance was broken. Wherever he went, hatred and discord sprang up.

In time, it seemed as if he might enslave all the world. Then from their chains, the people called to mighty Thunder: men, women, and children, they called.

Mighty Thunder arose. His anger burned hot. He took up his lightning hammer and smote, smote, smote. He broke the baleful heads of Motho; he broke the chains that bound the people.

In this way, Motho was killed, and the world was freed.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Horned Hammer

As pagan bumperstickers go, it was really pretty subtle.

A Thor's Hammer with antlers.

What it meant to whoever owned the van, I don't know. I could imagine several possibilities.

But I know what it meant to me. Hey, I've heard the stories.

They say that Old Hornie—but he would have been Young Hornie then—used to live up in the sky, in the House of Thunder, to the West.

Well, they say he didn't just live there.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    Best of luck in the learning, Anthony. Bwa ha ha.
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    Well now I have an image of Deerper from Monster Falls with Journal 3 in his left hand and Thor's hammer in his right hand in my m

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