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Culture Blogs

Popular subjects in contemporary Pagan culture and practice.

Category contains 1 blog entry contributed to teamblogs

Posted by on in Culture Blogs

I was chatting with some friends about the discussions about Pagan leadership. There's a conference planned for hard polytheists, and Shauna Aura Knight is writing a series on community building that's good reading (and thanks to Jo for pointing it out to me!). I'm really happy that constructive dialogue is starting up, and I hope that it yields community building and infrastructure in the Pagan and Heathen communities. When I think about my own strengths and weaknesses as a priestess/gythia, and what I'd like to leave as a legacy to my community twenty or fifty years from now, I don't want bickering with monotheists, or other Pagans to be that legacy. I'd like to build a support system for our faith.

Some of that comes from my background as a teacher and speech path; one of the goals in working for ChildFind was to assess both child and family's needs and connect them to government and private resources that would help them improve their lives. What we deeply need, IMO, is the same kind of training and access to resources, because when people seek spiritual counseling and connection, they're often hurting and in need of healing. I am not a healer, but I can help direct someone to the type of healer that they need. Of course, this type of work involves knowing yourself (and oh Gods, we talk about that alllll the time, but HOW do you know yourself?) - that's heavy duty metacognitive work. Just to pick on myself a moment, because modeling often helps people figure out their own processes:

Strengths:
Creative
Knowledgeable about the resources in my area (public and private)
Adaptable
Intelligent
Passionate
Have articulated personal monastic/ministerial ethics, ideals, and goals

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

Signs symbols book smallerWherever we live, we are surrounded by symbols—if we choose to see them. We can go through life ignorant of this rich imagery, or we can open our eyes to the deeper truths inherent in much that surrounds us. For those interested in exploring the philosophical and the metaphysical, a world filled with symbols is infinitely rich and rewarding, leading us to a greater understanding of ourselves and bringing a fresh perspective to our lives.” – From the book

From crosses to triangles, colors to flowers, symbols permeate art, myth, fairytales and movies. Most everyone knows that a heart pierced by an arrow symbolizes love, as well as that of a red rose. But have you ever considered how that association came to be made?

What about the pyramid on a dollar bill, “the finger”, or the significance of the red string bracelet worn by Kabbalists? Or what does it mean that Bill Clinton “points” with his thumb when giving a speech or that kohl lined the eyes of Ancient Egyptian women?  Where is the subtle symbol concealed in the FedEx emblem that earned it one of the top eight logos in modern design history?

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

Being Solitary is a defining part of who I am as a Pagan.  I meet so many other Solitaries in my journeys and often find them feeling disconnected from the greater Pagan Community.  That is why I write this blog and speak on this topic whenever I can.  The specific topic I write about today applies to every segment of the Community because, when it comes right down to it, each of us are Solitary within our own minds, and that’s important to remember.  Even Traditional Pagans often feel disenfranchised or isolated, (and most practice away from their Covens as well as with them) so this article is really for everyone in the Community.

A few of you might be aware that I was involved in a very serious (and very stupid) accident in mid-December.  I quickly sent out a call to my friends asking for healing energy directly from my hospital bed.  I was in extraordinary pain when I sent that request and was badly broken.  One aspect of my life as a Solitary has been to shield myself from the energy of others in most instances.  Bad experiences from my past have made me very cautious about the energies I take in and (generally speaking) I never open myself to energy from people I’ve never met.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Greybeard
    Greybeard says #
    Its good to hear that the magic worked for you. Your title, "like a drop of rain" always reminds me of doing accidental weather m
  • Terence P Ward
    Terence P Ward says #
    Glad to see that you're up and about again, Mr. Neal. I can be counted among the mostly solitary Pagans of the world, and I will

 b2ap3_thumbnail_SANY7301.JPG

One of the questions I get asked more often from our customers is “I want to have a Spiritual Path – how do I start?” - well, the answer couldn't be simpler: Living It Every Single Day. Entwining your everyday life with a set of regular devotional practises will gradually increase and empower your energy, connect you with the energies and entities around you, ground you, and build the Personal Power you will need to have efficient results on more demanding practises like Spell Work.

There is something I would like to explain before we go on with the practises – while I am practising my path every single moment of the day, I do not live surrounded by Pagans and I do not speak of my path unless someone asks me. While clearly I am not in the broom closet, I am a very private person, and the Canary Islands is a place where 99% of the population are Roman Catholics – not extremely devoted Catholics, but certainly people who still cringe at the word Witch. The social stigma of what I do has caused rejection, misunderstandings, prejudice, ridicule and fear in my life.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • John Halstead
    John Halstead says #
    Absolutely, I'll send you a draft in advance. John
  • Carolina Gonzalez
    Carolina Gonzalez says #
    Thanks so much! You can email me at magickshop (at) gmail (dot) com .
  • John Halstead
    John Halstead says #
    Carolina, I'd like to republish this on HumanisticPaganism.com in late spring with you permission. Is that okay?
Pagan savings challenge, week three: flow

When it came time to make the weekly donation to my Pagan savings challenge envelope, instead of just adding the money, I also replaced the cash that was already in there.  I've been reading The Soul of Money, particularly a very thoughtful passage on the flow of money, so I decided to incorporate that into my weekly offering to help me explore the idea.  I will replace the entire amount each time I add the weekly allotment.

This week, the growing pile of cash is pictured on my shrine to Hestia, for the hearth is going to get an upgrade with the assistance of this money.  Fireplace insert, here we come.

My week three savings:  $6.00, half of which I put there today.

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