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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in ritual

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Io Saturnalia!

 

And sometimes there’s nothing quite like the familiarity of a ritual you’ve attended every year, for half a dozen years, knowing that you’ll be attending the very same ritual half a dozen more.

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs

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A Prayer Whispered into the Threshold

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Dining with the Ancestors: A Modern Minoan Rite

We're approaching Samhain here in the northern hemisphere, so my thoughts naturally turn toward the Ancestors. The Minoans didn't celebrate Samhain - it's a Celtic festival from a time many centuries after the fall of Minoan civilization and a place a great distance away from Crete. But the Minoans did honor the Ancestors and the spirits of the dead. In fact, as far as we can tell, that's something all ancient cultures did in one way or another.

The Minoans appear to have performed dining rites, something along the lines of a Dumb Supper, a meal where the spirits of the dead are invited as honored guests. The image at the top of this blog post is a fascinating terracotta model from the Minoan tholos tomb at Kamilari. It depicts four people in a dining shrine, seated with little tables in front of them. Two of the tables hold what appear to be loaves of bread. In front of the tables, two human-like figures are rising up out of the floor: the spirits of the dead.

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Peaceful Prosperity Now! So Mote It Be!

For me, prospering financially, emotionally, and spiritually requires fully engaging in life, not backing off from whatever’s occurring. Being human, I readily forsake the moment, but if I move into the now on a somewhat consistent basis, abundance comes, accompanied by serenity. One of my blocks to being in the moment is finding glory in self-pity. I try to avoid it, even when things are at their worst, because self-pity makes my defeat more likely. For example, when we thought I had only months to live, trying to avoid self-pity and instead committing to the moment and being of service to it allowed triumph; now I have another 20 years in me.

 

I want to feel my life is of epic proportion. However, I don’t want to create that feeling by constantly dwelling on my problems, making them grow in my mind, so that I view myself to be an abandoned, struggling hero. 

 

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs

 

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The Minoan Seal Ring Project: Sacred Art

In addition to being a writer, I'm also an artist, and I find myself inspired by the works of the ancient Minoans. One of the unique traditions the Minoans had was creating gold seal rings with ritual scenes on them. I've created my own modern art versions of these seal rings as a way of bringing the scenes alive.

Up top you can see my version of the gold seal ring found in the Isopata tomb at Knossos. Here's the original:

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs

Traditional lore can inform, gently point to mysteries, and outright open gateways. But, nowadays, in the Pagan community, rigid interpretation of lore often becomes a stranglehold on magical and spiritual practices.

 

I’ve spent years learning lore, meditating on it so it can inform shamanic lessons I give, and creating ritual based in lore. So I’d be the first to insist that, sometimes, lore provides definitive, irrefutable facts. However, common sense is needed.  

 

My mother taught me to think for myself. It was one of the greatest gifts a parent can give. 

 

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Judith Shaw
    Judith Shaw says #
    Very well put. Dogma is the death of spirituality. Our spiritual practices seem to be best served if we remain open to growth an
  • Francesca De Grandis
    Francesca De Grandis says #
    Judith, thanks so much! I *really* appreciate your support re my essay.
  • Francesca De Grandis
    Francesca De Grandis says #
    Tasha, thank you so much for your kind words. I’m so glad you relate to what I’m saying. Bright blessings back at you!
  • Tasha Halpert
    Tasha Halpert says #
    What you said in this well written piece is right on in my book. Thank you for putting it so well. There are many masks worn by th
  • Dragon Dancer
    Dragon Dancer says #
    I feel you on this. I have a (tentative, I'm still very new and learning) relationship with Death as an entity, usually presenting

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