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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 Paths Blogs
Dionysos, Bulls and Funerals

Over at Ariadne’s Tribe we’ve been developing a liturgy for modern Minoan Paganism – a yearly calendar of sacred events and their meanings, along with tidbits about the deities who are involved with each one. Throughout the year, Dionysos plays a big part in Minoan spirituality. In fact, he’s the most prominent god, to the point that the Greeks compared him to their Zeus. In addition to his well-known associations with wine, Dionysos also figures as the dying-and-reborn god of the solar year, an aspect that adds quite a few layers to his presence. Lately I’ve been thinking about how his different festivals and annual milestones dovetail together, and what that might mean in terms of some of the well-known bits of life in ancient Crete, bull-leaping in particular.

Before we dive into this subject, it’s important to realize that Minoan civilization, in the form we’re accustomed to think of it, lasted for a solid 15 centuries, from roughly 3000 to 1500 BCE. During that time, the religious practices of the island shifted and changed, from fairly simple ancestor-based activities all the way to an official state religion run by the big temples. Alongside the official religion, the people always had their own home-based practices, which echoed the state religion in some ways and diverged from it in others. But throughout this time, Dionysos played a prominent role.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    Funny, I'd just written up a piece on bull-leaping myself. Must be something in the air.
  • Thesseli
    Thesseli says #
    Very nice!

Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
Celebrating the sun

Solar festivals are definite fixed points in the wheel of the year. Shortest day and longest day, and the two days when light and dark are equal. It all seems very straightforward, until you start trying to make sense of the details or work out what you, personally, want to do in response to all of this.

When do we celebrate? Is it the dawn, or the setting sun, or the sun at the height of its power at midday? When is the midpoint of true balance at an equinox? And in practice, Pagan groups are only sometimes able to gather and celebrate the day. Normal work patterns mean that we’re more likely celebrating the nearest weekend to a solar event. At which point it’s more about celebrating the idea than an immediate experience of connecting with the occurring solar festival.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

 

Like many of you, I celebrated the Supreme Court decision that has effectively legalized same-sex marriage throughout the USA.  While the Pagan Community is a wide-ranging and diverse group of people (and we have generally embraced members of the LGBT Community in contrast to many other groups who have stood in opposition), it is worth remembering that there are socially conservative Pagans who might not have celebrated quite as much.  However, the majority of our Community seems to be on the more liberal/progressive side of things.

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
Rule #1

When I had my first child, asking for help was the hardest lesson I had to learn.  With my second, I struggle with picking myself up and keep going.

 

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Pagan News Beagle: Fiery Tuesday, June 30

Love wins! This week for Fiery Tuesday we've gathered a number of links relating to the recent Supreme Court decisions about gay marriage and how religious groups are reacting to it. Additionally, we've got another story about the Charleston shooting (and why it matters how we define it in our public consciousness). All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The Snake Goddess Reborn, Part 1

There's a sense of history in the making in Greece these days. The people are called to vote in a referendum whether they agree with the harshest austerity measures they've ever faced. If they vote no, they're threatened with an exit from the eurozone and the European Union.

Scary? For many people yes. Yet sometimes what we most fear is precisely what we need to face. What may seem as impending doom may in fact be a propelling force towards a much-needed process of renewal. Which brings us to the topic of this blog post: for a very long time, the snake has been a powerful symbol of death and rebirth. Interestingly, it was also sacred to Athena, the Goddess of Wisdom, the patron goddess of Athens, which is now the capital of Greece.
 
I've always felt a special affinity to the snake. As a teenager, I used to draw a serpent coiled around my ring finger. This much maligned animal seems to carry a message: facing your fears can be a path to regeneration and wisdom. Exploring the hidden meanings of the snake has become a source of inspiration for me. Allow me to share with you a part of an article I wrote about Athena as Snake Goddess.
 

Pallas, only-begotten, venerable offspring of the great Zeus…

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Ritual Tech: A Month for Loki

As previously mentioned, my kindred is kicking around an idea for a shared ritual this July for Loki. Since people expressed an interest in this, I thought I'd post some simple ritual tech for this Working. We're keeping it simple, and using a variant on "Come to me in whatever form (or a specific form) and share with me whatever You choose."

ex: "Loki shapechanger, Loki Witchfather, Loki Mother of Monsters, come to me as You like; share with me whatever you please. Come to me in love, as I love You." (or honor, or other verbiage that suits your relationship with Him)

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