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PaganSquare is a community blog space where Pagans can discuss topics relevant to the life and spiritual practice of all Pagans.

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs

b2ap3_thumbnail_199px-First_Book_of_Kings_Chapter_8-3_Bible_Illustrations_by_Sweet_Media.jpgLike many holidays, Valentine's Day holds a secret.

In earlier times, this day was a celebration of women's pro-creative power — our body-centered power to renew life, and the pleasure of doing so!

This poem, unearthing Celtic, Roman, and heretical Christian strands weaving through Valentine's Day, begins...

This Valentine came in the mail today —
the fe-male, that is:
Greetings from history in women's terms.

Valentine Day's is a fraud, of course, you know that,
Hall-marked and carded as it is for commerce.
But more than that:

The boy himself's a fraud.
St. Valentine's a fiction, the convenient invention
of some grim Christian churchmen.

...and comes to you complete with historical notes, such as

and where the fever starts:
Words such as fever, febrile, and February have their origin in Februata as an epithet of the Great Goddess.

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
Valentine’s and the Self-Married Woman

(Blog image by Tom LaBaff)

This is my first Valentine’s as a self-married woman.

...
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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Jeanine Byers
    Jeanine Byers says #
    I am self-married, too (and I did it in May, too, on Beltane, a couple of years ago). Hope you have a wonderful Valentine's Day!
  • Ashley Rae
    Ashley Rae says #
    I did have a wonderful Valentine's, thanks Jeanine! How was yours?
  • Jeanine Byers
    Jeanine Byers says #
    It was great, thanks!

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The Kiss of the Green Man

“What do you know about the Green Man?”

Jim isn't pagan, but his husband, who is, told him that I was the one to talk to. In my pagan arrogance, I could understand why he would be interested in the Green Man. What I couldn't understand was why he should be so interested.

I rattled on for a while about late Roman Bacchic motifs and medieval sculpture, clearly missing the point entirely. Finally I trailed off and asked the question I should have asked first.

“Why do you ask?” I asked him. Thank Goddess.

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PaganNewsBeagle Earthy Thursday Feb 12

Today's Earthy Thursday post supports solutions and inspirations for living. New cultural ideas including "forest bathing" from Japan; eco-art in the woods; saving Monarchs and getting paid for it; salt-water friendly potatoes and a multi-generational organic dairy.

Are you just "done in" with the Thanksgiving-until-Valentine's Day slog of commercial holidays? Maybe one of these ideas -- cultural concepts from outside North American culture -- will inspire you instead.

...
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Posted by on in Studies Blogs
How Context shapes your spiritual work

Lately, in the magical experiments community, I've been doing some experiments with pathworking techniques, and my fellow members have been gracious enough to try my ideas out. I've been paying close attention to their feedback and one consistent issue that has come up is how important context is for shaping a pathworking in such a way that people actually connect with whatever you want them to connect with. If there is not enough contextual information provided it can be hard to know what, if anything, you've connected with.

The right context provides enough information to orient the person in the pathworking and then leaves the rest of it up to the person. I take a very minimalistic approach to pathworking, ideally providing as little information as possible in order to see how the people involved will connect with whatever is being worked with. Determining how much context and what context to provide has been the interesting challenge. I don't want to provide too much because then I could potentially be steering the pathworking toward specific outcomes and I want to pick what information I share so that I can see what people pick up independently of anything I've shared.

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
Goddess Roots of Mardi Gras in New Orleans

With Mardi Gras just around the corner I thought I'd share an excerpt from my first published book, Sacred Places of Goddess: 108 Destinations.  You see, I lived the first thirty years of my life in New Orleans without a clue about the Pagan and Goddess roots of Mardi Gras.  When you live in that Christian bubble, you tend not look beyond it, but then when you do, a tsunami of awakening might be the result, as it was for me.....

Vieux Carre
The essence of Goddess, as a celebration of life, holds sway in New Orleans at the very core of the people, even if they're unaware of it.  Life there moves at a slower pace and New Orleanians see no reason to catch up. It is a city proud of its diverse cultural and ethnic heritage, where people look for just about any excuse to indulge in the pleasures of food, drink, and partying. There is a sense of life being a bit more in-sync with the natural rhythms and life’s simple pleasures. Despite the influence of the Catholic Church, the lifestyle in New Orleans is hardly dogmatic or puritanical. In the Big Easy, as the city is often called, the spirit of the Feminine is also reflected in the Old World charm of the architecture in the Vieux Carre, in celebrations such as Mardi Gras with its pagan roots dating back to the rituals of the Lupercalia, Cybele and Attis, and in the worship of the Virgin Mary, Our Lady of Guadalupe, and various goddesses in the Yoruban pantheon.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
My Funny Valentine

I realize that many folks feel jaded about Valentine's Day. They see only the commercialized over-production number of it, and forget all about Lupercalia and the mating season for wolves. Perhaps simply because of those latter two facts, I do appreciate the day. It wasn't literally invented by Hallmark in the 20th Century, like Sweetest Day, for Goddess' sake. It can in fact be old-fashioned and sweet – if you enjoy it on your own terms. Please don't let anyone pressure you into dragging your honey to "Fifty Shades of Vanilla," or to blow hundreds at a 10-course meal at the trendiest restaurant, simply because it's the thing to do. In fact, why not do something totally unconventional:

Why not host an old-fashioned Valentine's Day party? You could send out the cute invites to people you'd like to join you – like the ones you exchanged in elementary school. Build some anticipation and surprise about the event. Don't create a page on Facebook. Do it old-school. Don't let anyone know who else will be there ahead of time.

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