PaganSquare


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 Culture Blogs
Bull Dance

Our Minnesota weather's been lushly Mediterranean of late, so naturally (such is the life of the wandering scholar) I've been thinking about bull-leaping.

I'm wondering if maybe—just maybe—the scholars have got it wrong.

Admittedly, my knowledge of the literature on the subject is not exhaustive. Still, on the basis of information available (to me, at any rate), I have the impression that much, if not most, current scholarship assumes that what we see depicted in Minoan art—what Mary Renault so charmingly calls the Bull Dance—is a sport, if perhaps a sport with religious overtones. Discussion tends to center on whether such a sport would actually have been physically possible or not.

I am given to understand that the scenes of bull-acrobatics that we see—on the golden ring-seal shown above, for example—are simply not possible; that bulls gore sideways rather than upwards, as the leaping scenes would imply. Contemporary athletes have been unable to duplicate the classical frontal bull-leap shown in Minoan art.

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In Support of our own: understanding Unitarian Universalist Idealization

"Human progress is neither automatic nor inevitable... Every step toward the goal of justice requires sacrifice, suffering, and struggle; the tireless exertions and passionate concern of dedicated individuals."  -- Martin Luther King, Jr.

Last year this time I responded to an essay written by John Michael Greer titled, "A Bad Case of Methodist Envy:  Copying Christian models of clergy is a Pagan dead end."  His essay argued against the notion of payed professional clergy and my response was to argue in favor of professional clergy -- at least having the option of professional clergy.  In this essay it is my hope to build upon the ideas I shared in last year's essay but also share further reflections on the subject of the evolving nature of Paganism in general and Pagan clergy in particular.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Jenni West
    Jenni West says #
    What benefit does a clergy based hierarchy provide for such a belief system? It opens the door to abuse of power and canonization
  • David Oliver Kling
    David Oliver Kling says #
    Jenni, there have always been clergy within the Pagan movement and there has always been abuse of power within the community by so
  • Jenni West
    Jenni West says #
    With all due respect, if Paganism becomes clergy based, I will slip further from the public path.
  • David Oliver Kling
    David Oliver Kling says #
    Paganism has had clergy in both antiquity and in our modern world; therefore, I don't understand what you mean.

Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Finding Pop Culture Magick

A lot of people have been asking me how I got into pop culture magick of late. It’s a difficult question to answer because it’s always been a part of my magickal practice. When I was a little girl I remember imagining Rainbow Brite protecting me from thunderstorms and nightmares. When I was a teenager I would “talk” to Hamlet and Horatio when I felt misunderstood and needed guidance. So even before I knew what real magick was, I was doing bits and pieces of pop culture magick. I suppose the first time I intentionally did pop culture magick, though I didn’t call it that at the time, was when I first started working with the elements.

For my use of pop culture magick to really make sense you’ll need a little context. I grew up in a household where hiking and enjoying nature were valued side by side with science and engineering. I remember meandering through woodland trails in the North Cascades while talking to my Dad about NASA, Star Trek, and fairy tales interchangeably. My love of mountains and general geekery were born and nurtured at the same time and in largely the same way, so they’ve always been intertwined in my mind. For me, there’s never really been a separation between the magicks of nature and the realities of the mundane world.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    Thank you for sharing. I once had a dream where I was in a barren dark grey wasteland. Ahead of me were the goggle boys from the
  • Dragon Dancer
    Dragon Dancer says #
    Oh. My. Gods! I think I've done this in the past and never even known it! I surround myself with fandom and fantasy, always have
Pagan News Beagle: Faithful Friday, July 3

Today, for Faithful Friday and in celebration of the Supreme Court's decision on same-sex marriage we take a look at different faiths' view on the matter. Join us as we hear George Takei's experiences with both Buddhism and homosexuality, the ways in which American Muslims have reacted to the decision, and a Hindu's perspective from Patheos. All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!

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Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs

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Interdependence. This topic is often on my mind as we approach U.S. Independence Day. There is so much strength in interdependence or being in-dependence together.

According to one of my favorite Goddess scholars, Carol Christ, the central ethical vision of Goddess religion is that all beings are embedded in a web of interconnected relatedness. All beings are part of the web of life. Everything is in relation—indeed it is possible to have relationships with the sun, sky, wind, and rainbow, as well as to other people, animals, plants, and the Divine. Everything is interconnected and does not exist without connection, relationship. Connection is strength, not weakness, and it is central.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Meeting the Ocean

When I was eleven or twelve, my family took an epic road trip. We traveled from Michigan to the east coast, stopping in Washington, D.C., as well as visiting some family friends who lived near one of Virginia’s beaches. It was my first time meeting the ocean, and the part of the long trip I was looking forward to most.


I still remember the heady feeling of the waves carrying me as I floated, waiting on my borrowed boogie board, the taste of salt in my mouth. It was magical, and I fell in love with the ocean that day.

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Pagan Event Planning: Recipes for Disaster Part 2

 

In Part 1, we looked at Team Intrepid as it began an event planning process for a Pagan event without creating any structure for decisionmaking or establishing any goals, and diving right into minutia of the event. And this process can work as long as everyone agrees on everything. 

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Recent comment in this post - Show all comments
  • Rick
    Rick says #
    Beginners at event planning should start out building a pert diagram. This is a very simple exercise where you list all of the tas

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