Tips on how to take care of yourself if you're a religious activist. A look at the role of "dynamic harmony" in Confucianism. And a Muslim father mourns the loss of his son on a national stage. It's Faithful Friday, our weekly segment on news about faiths and religious communities from around the world. All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!
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The harvest holidays of paganism are great times to celebrate the gifts that plants give to all of us in the ecosystem. Grains have been a mainstay of the human (and pre-human) diet throughout our evolution. Studies of the early populations in Africa as long as 105 000 years ago show a diet sustained heavily by sorghum. Plants have been found on the grinding tools of several Paleolithic excavations. Evidence of starchy grains on the teeth of Neanderthals has been found from the Mediterranean to throughout Europe. There is even evidence that these early proto-humans learned to cook these plant foods.
Rare species on Easter Island face extinction. New fossils in China challenge assumptions about human evolution. And we talk about the economics of air pollution. It's Earthy Thursday, our weekly segment on science and Earth-related news! All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!
Title: Spirit Touched: A Caleyna Summoner Tale...
I started my quest to find the name or word Aurkonungr while reviewing Lecouteux’s new Encyclopedia, which has an entry for Aurkonungr saying it is a name of Honir. Some of the entries had citations to sources, but not that one. Because I had never heard of such a name for Honir, I set out to find the source. Long did I trek through the mountains up the rocky river, seeking the source, the well of wisdom, beset by skaven and… ahem, no, I sensibly got on Google, which returned 0 results. That word literally does not exist on the internet. Well, it didn’t—it does now, ironically, here in this blog post.
Members of the American Asatru Association’s Facebook discussion group helped me track down where Lecouteux was most likely to have gotten the word from. Although aurkonungr does not appear on the net, there is exactly one return for a reasonable variation of the word, árkonungr: “et, que Ynglingasaga qualifie plusieurs rois de árkonungr, gódr árkonungr, roi, bon roi à moissons” from Tripertita: fonctionnels chez divers peuples indoeuropéens by Georges Dumézil. This word is only written that way in French. In Icelandic texts, it's written as two words, ár konungr....
AP: Washington, DC
The Postmaster General announced today the upcoming release of a series of stamps commemorating the eight holidays celebrated by the vast majority of contemporary pagans.
"Pagans have been an integral part of this nation since its founding and before," said Postmaster Tamar Penrose, acting head of the US Postal Service. "It's time and high time for such a public acknowledgement."
The stamps will be released later this year on November 1, the ancient Celtic holiday of Samhain, celebrated by many contemporary pagans as their New Year.
The release coincides with the opening of the Smithsonian's new exhibit, "Pagan America: The First 400 Years." The exhibit will include the unveiling of the original prototypes for the stamps.
The prototypes were created by the Minneapolis Collective of Pagan Artists (MCPA) which, since its founding in 2013, has spearheaded the mainstreaming of pagan art and culture into American consciousness. It was the MCPA that first vetted the idea to the Postal Service.
It snowed in the Blue Mountains, where I live. It's always colder here than in Sydney, the mountains - which are not really mountains at all, but a plateau pushed up from the sea one hundred and seventy million years ago - are a kilometre above sea level and have their own weather. Which means that, although it never snows in Sydney, it does sometimes snow up here.
I was coming back from Sydney, on the train and I watched as the rain drops falling outside the window somehow seemed to get lighter, to become blown about by the wind, I watched them becoming snow as the train moved higher and further west. It was late afternoon and out the window I saw small dips in the land filled with ferns carrying a delicate blanket of snow on their fronds, like icing, it was truly magical. I stared and stared....