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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
The trouble with Minoan deity names

You may have noted that in these blog posts I use phrases like "the god we call Korydallos" or "the goddess we call Therasia." That's because we have an interesting conundrum with some of the Minoan deities: we don't know what the Minoans called them.

Some deity names survived the Late Bronze Age collapse intact, eventually being subsumed into the Hellenic pantheon: Rhea, Eileithyia, and Dionysus are well-known examples. Others were "demoted" to human characters in myth and legend (Minos, for example, and Ariadne). But we still know their names - that part of them was not lost over time, even if their characteristics changed due to cultural pressure as the Greeks came to power and the Minoans disappeared from view.

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
2020: The MMP Blog Greatest Hits

Just like a lot of people, toward the end of December I like to look back over the previous year and review all that has happened. Part of that process involves looking at my blog posts here to see what turned out to be popular and what didn't. That helps me know what people are interested in and where I should put my energy when I'm writing future blog posts. So here's my 2020 Top Ten List.

It's no surprise that my most popular blog post this year is the one that lists the full MMP pantheon. Popular culture leads a lot of people to think that Minoan spirituality is just about the Snake Goddess (those fabulous figurines!) or Ariadne and the Minotaur. But really, there's so much more, and I'm thrilled that folx are checking out all the deities in our pantheon.

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Hands of Great Skill: A few "handy" Minoan deities

Modern Minoan Paganism's pantheon includes a variety of gods and goddesses with varying attributes. One group I haven't talked much about is the set of deities we call Hands of Great Skill: those whose purview is highly skilled handcrafts of various sorts.

Taking the raw materials of the Earth and transforming them, turning them into something new and different: that's a kind of magic. Rhea's gifts to us - clay and metal ore - are the body of the Earth Mother, offered up to those whose can make blades from rocks and vessels from mud using their hands and the equally magical power of fire.

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Pagan News Beagle: Watery Wednesday, January 25 2017

We've got the winners from a Norse mythology art contest. Elizabeth Creely talks about the mystique and appeal of Mary, the mother of Jesus. And a blogger discusses what it means to "put the gods first." It's Watery Wednesday, our news segment on the Pagan community around the world! All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!

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Pagan News Beagle: Watery Wednesday, April 6

The New York Times takes a look at the collection of Doreen Valiente. The way in which gods have "evolved" over time is considered. And the debate over politics within polytheism continues. It's Watery Wednesday, our weekly segment on new about the Pagan community. All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!

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Ariadne was just a girl and other urban legends of antiquity

We like to think of the gods as having always existed, time out of mind. In one sense they are timeless, of course, but in another sense they are closely linked to the cultures and societies of specific eras. It’s important to know when each deity ‘showed up’ and in what culture they did so, in order to understand which versions of the myths are the original ones and which are later alterations.

That’s right, later cultures came along and changed the earlier versions of myths, in most cases because they were taking over a society and wanted to downplay or even demonize its deities in favor of their own. You may be familiar with the way the writers of the Old Testament (the Hebrew Bible) depicted Asherah, Ba’al and other Middle Eastern deities as evil demons. You may also have heard about the ways the medieval Christian church condemned the European Pagan gods as evil spirits in the cases where they couldn’t manage to transform them into local saints. Well, these kinds of smear campaigns have been going on as long as there have been people and pantheons.

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Last New Moon, we explored the spirit-filled world of the polytheistic Celtic-speaking tribes. Of course, this is the same spirit-filled world we inhabit today, whether we currently live in one of the modern Celtic nations or are the far-flung biological or spiritual descendants of the ancient Celts, living in many other countries around the world. The call of these ancient traditions runs deep, as attested by the more than 22,000 people who viewed The Three Cauldrons blog last month!

Think about it... all of those people, on some level, are your tribe. In the wake of the industrial revolution and the information age, we enjoy many conveniences, but also suffer tremendously from a lack of connection. We hunger for community, tribe, elders, and connection with nature and spirit. This hunger for connection boils down to one word: Relationship. Why else are we on the internet looking for like-minded souls? Seeking peers, friends and colleagues, looking for common ground, support and inspiration, we reach out into the etheric web, and are sometimes rewarded with connection.

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