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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 Culture Blogs
The City of the Horned Apollo

If true, it's got to be one of history's more delicious ironies.

The ancient city of Cyrene, in what is now Libya, was founded in 620 BCE by colonists from the volcanic island of Thera (or Santorini), of Minoan archaeology fame.

Foremost among its patron gods was Apollo Kernaios, the Horned Apollo.

On the city's coinage, the god was shown in profile, with a crescent ram's horn curling around his ear. It was likely this image that gave rise to Lysimakhos' famous coins depicting the horned Alexander.

Over the centuries, the city was home to many famous statesmen, artists, and philosophers, but today its best-known resident (historic or not) is probably Simon of Cyrene, who is said in the Synoptic gospels to have carried the cross of Jesus when Jesus himself was too weak to carry it.

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Pagan News Beagle: Airy Monday, August 29

The spiritual side of Pokémon is explored. We take a look at a few books that feature a classical "adventuring party." And the significance of the "Jedi Mecca" is explained by the director of Star Wars: Rogue One. It's Airy Monday, our weekly segment on magic and religion in pop culture! All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!

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Can Good Theology Change the World? Part 2

In the first blog in this series, I argued that one of the hallmarks of a good theology is recognizing that the source of authority must be located in individuals and communities who interpret texts and traditions as they encounter divinity anew in the present. In our new book Goddess and God World, Judith Plaskow and I suggest that a second hallmark of good theology is the “turn to the world.” What we mean by this is not only that divinity is immanent in the world, but also that the purpose of human life is to be found in this world—not the next.

The God of traditional theologies is pictured as an old man with a long white beard who rules the world from heaven. It is commonly assumed by those familiar with this picture that the purpose and meaning of human life is not to be found in this world—but rather in heaven. This assumption is increasingly being challenged. Many people no longer believe in life after death. The purpose of morality is increasingly being understood as improving the conditions for the flourishing of human and other forms of life—not on gaining the approval of a God who has the power to assign individuals to heaven or hell in the next world.

In my earlier book She Who Changes, I argued that western philosophies and theologies took a massive “wrong turn” when they accepted the Platonic dualism of mind and body and argued that the rational soul or spirit can—and should--rise above the body in order to commune with eternal truths. I stated that this “wrong turn” away from the body and the world was rooted in “matricide.”

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fall_leaves.jpgThis is the most important New Moon of the year. It’s an eclipse that will further emphasize the Saturn-Neptune square that has been dogging us this year, particularly in the political, social and environmental arenas, including an inability to get to the truth, “othering” (e.g. racism, misogyny, religious persecution), floods and fires and major problems with pollution, particularly water pollution. These and other Saturn-Neptune issues (finding truth, spiritual materialism, a pull towards authoritarianism) are being brought to our attention so we can fix them, both in our personal lives and on a larger stage. The eclipse insists we look at how we’re doing with that, and work on manifesting our spiritual ideals in a practical way.

As with all challenging charts — and make no mistake, this is a formidable chart — there is a tremendous amount of power being made available to us, so we will need to stay focused and sharp to make sure that power is directed to our benefit, and hopefully the benefit of all. The benefits here, if we work with the energy, include powerful, practical visions, a balancing of perspective, improved health, wisdom born of experience, and a deeper insight into our personal spiritual paths.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Beardman

Well, beards are back.

These days it seems like every third guy's sporting one.

Which brings me (of course) to the god of the witches.

Oh, it's a long and winding thread that I spin today, my friend. Take hold of the end and let's see where it leads us.

***

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Crafting a Valknut for Odin

Coming up on the one year anniversary as a Bride of Odin on June 28th, 2015, I asked Odin what he wanted for our anniversary, and he said he wanted something to represent him in my "shrine." I clarified with him what he meant by shrine, and he meant the glass display cases on the wall where I had recently starting putting spiritual souvenirs. So I made a Valknut. I made two, in fact, one for the monthly anniversary which is every 28th of the month, on May 28th, and one for the one-year anniversary on June 28th.

I made the first valknut from silk ribbon on a silk hoop. I made the template for it on the 27th and made the art object itself on May 28th. The paper template helped me put the points of the triangles in the right places. It was interesting making a val-“knut” (knot) as a fiber craft, with the lines of the triangles crossing over and under each other like a real knot.

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Pagan News Beagle: Faithful Friday, August 26

Atheist activists clash with self-proclaimed Jedi. A writer explains what it's like to become a Buddhist. And we take a look at the politics of religion in China. It's Faithful Friday, our weekly segment on faiths and religious communities from around the world! All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!

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