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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Why the Craft Is Different

There were many horned gods in antiquity.

There's no evidence that any of them were “dying gods.”

(Osiris, perhaps the preeminent dying god of antiquity, was a horned god, it's true. But since most of the other gods—not to mention the goddesses—of ancient Egypt wore horns, but were never said to have died, it's questionable how much the case of Osiris can be said to prove.)

We have no evidence, for instance, that the Cernunnos of the Keltic world was a dying god, much less a dying-and-rising god. In a single story, Pan is said to have died (“Great Pan is dead!”), but this is a one-off story, not a mythology of an Eternal Return.

Yet, in the modern paganisms, the Horned God is preeminently He Who Dies and Rises: the great and sacred story of humanity's lifelong religious involvement with the animal species which, through the history of our kind, have been the source of our food.

Where, then, did this identification come from, if not from the ancient paganisms? Why do we think of the Horned as He Who Dies to Feed the People?

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  • Greybeard
    Greybeard says #
    Interesting observation about the dying God as a Christian concept. Maybe that's why I have never been comfortable with the whole

Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
Blodeuwedd, Flower Goddess

Blodeuwedd, known as the Ninefold Goddess of the Western Isles of Paradise, was a goddess like no other in the manner of her birth. She is one of the main figures in the Mabinogion, the Welsh cycle of stories of the early Celtic Goddesses and Gods.

Divinatory Meaning

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Viewing The World Through Pagan Eyes VI:  clearing away the confusions of ‘cultural appropriation’

 

Previous essays in this series

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  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    I have seen pictures of a Sikh family celebrating Christmas and I have read of a Jewish woman saying that Christmas is too nice a
  • Thesseli
    Thesseli says #
    Great article!

Posted by on in Paths Blogs
A Sun Garden

Create a Sun garden

This idea lends itself to sunflowers as the centre and they come in all shapes and sizes, but any bright yellow and orange flowers would work well.  Particularly suited are those flowers that open in the sun or follow the sun as it traverses across the sky.  You could also include ‘desert’ type plants with shingle, stones and succulents (bear in mind that a lot of succulents are not frost hardy).

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Poppy Power Money Magic

The San Francisco Bay Area is magical in spring and summer, with a profusion of poppies growing along the highway and in every available crevice. No wonder California is one of the wealthiest places in the world. We pagans revere poppies for their money magic. If you have a yard, meadow, or any strip of ground you can garden, buy poppy seeds and simply toss them all around. Months later, you will have a wealth of wildflowers.

 

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What Do You Call Fellow Coven-Members?

What do you call fellow members of your coven?

In the absence of a universally-accepted term, a number of usages have sprung up across contemporary Witchdom.

Coveners: Coven as something you do. Personally, I find this term inelegant, since generally -er is a suffix attached to verbs, not nouns. I don't like the phrase “to coven together” either,* but—in the long run—use determines correctness, so maybe I'm just being a dinosaur here.

Coven-mates: Coven as a place, or as a group of friends. This is the term that they use in our sister-coven. I'm not sure whether this is mate as in “pal,” or as in “room-mate.” I don't usually think of a coven as a place, but I guess I'm good with it either way.

Coven-sisters/Coven-brothers: Coven as family. These are the oldest and most traditional terms, and anyone who has ever been part of a functional coven will readily understand the metaphor. The disadvantage of these two, of course, is that they're gender-specific, which in a mixed group can get awkward.

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  • Greybeard
    Greybeard says #
    I have always said "coveners." Depending on context it may be "coven members." One of our traditional rituals talks about "br

Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
The season of second chances

We tend to think of nesting birds and cute fledglings as a spring thing. In practice, right now many birds are raising second clutches as we move into the summer. Some will raise three, even. This is the season of second chances.

The survival rate for cute, fluffy chicks isn’t great. A momma duck can start out with a dozen tiny bundles of fluff and be lucky to raise one viable duck to adulthood. The problem for chicks is that they are mouthfuls of protein with no scope to defend themselves or escape. They come into the world at just the point in the year when everything predatory is looking for neat bundles of protein to post into the mouths of their own cute and hungry young things.

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