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 Paths Blogs
The Light In My Heart

Continuing my story of my personal journey on my heathen path, when I was 30 I was finally mentally and physically healthy.  When the goddess Freya had claimed me for her Priestess when I was 20, she had appeared in her solar aspect. In my mind's eye, she always appeared as the white-hot light of the sun. That Light is all-love and all-life. Until I became healthy enough to reach it again, I had only experienced that Light once, during my initiation in 1989. Ten years later, I was ready to bring it inside myself.

Through writing fiction, I came up with the idea of picturing the Light and bringing that Light into my heart. After a character in my story did it, I did it, too. I pictured my hand, reached into the Light, and pushed it into my heart.

The last quote from my memoir, Greater Than the Sum of My Parts:
 

     “I mentally reached out a hand into that shining consciousness of life-fire.  I reached.  I pulled. The light was within me.

     A grin spread over my face and I laughed out loud.  It worked!  The Light of my initiation all those years ago had been there all along.  I only needed a whole mind to reach it." 
 

That Light has been with me ever since. It is ecstatic. It's always there, pouring from my heart. Anytime I wish, I can temporarily fill my body with that light and experience the sun body, a state of religious ecstasy. Then I let the light go again, and Freya's Light radiates out to the world through me.

That’s the end of the story in my memoir; it ends with becoming healthy and whole and a vehicle for the light of my Goddess. But as with all stories that don’t end with death, life went on after the happily-ever-after. I've lived 16 more years since then, and I'll continue to share the story of my journey here in Gnosis Diary.

Freya is the Light in my heart.

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Rabbi Shimon ben Shetah and the 80 Witches of Ashkelon

In the days of Queen Salome Alexandra, the city of Ashkelon was plagued by a coven of 80 witches who lived in a cave outside the city. Rabbi Shimon ben Shetah decided to rid the city of these wicked women and their sorceries. He summoned 80 strong men and instructed each of them to acquire a jar and to place within it a change of clothing; he did the same himself.

On a night of pouring rain, he went with his men and stood outside the cave. “Sisters,” he called out to the witches, “I am a sorcerer, like yourselves; let me come in out of the rain.” Quickly he removed his wet clothing and donned the dry set from his jar.

“Enter, fellow sorcerer,” cried the eighty.

R. Shimon entered the cave, and the witches marveled at his dry clothing. “How did you do this deed?” they asked.

“My power is so great that I can walk through rain and remain unwetted,” said he. “By the power of my magic, I can work another wonder for you: I can summon 80 men, each in clothing as dry as my own, to come and dance with you.”

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Pagan News Beagle Earthy Thursday Feb 26, 2015

It's that time of the week again: Earthy Thursday! Read on for stories of edible "smut," birth and death, what to garden in winter, and the smell of rain.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Identity and Leadership Failure


So many of the leadership problems that I see in the Pagan community come down to issues of our personal identity. There are leadership techniques for building healthy communities, models for understanding group dynamics, and tools to mediate conflicts. But the truth is…all of that stuff is a house built on a faulty foundation if we don’t also do our personal work.

To do that work, we have to understand identity.

And we also have to admit that all of us need to do this work. Unfortunately, the way identity functions can make it hard to change our own bad behaviors, and ego is pretty good at denial. When a group blows up you’ll often hear, “It’s just too much ego.” They’re sort of right, but it’s a little more complicated.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Erin Lale
    Erin Lale says #
    Over-committing, that's something I keep trying to work on, too. My over-committing is rooted in feeling that it's not nice to say
  • Shauna Aura Knight
    Shauna Aura Knight says #
    Those are all really good ones. Well--good in terms of juicy/useful for self reflection. I do the over-committing and bailing pret
  • Anne Newkirk Niven
    Anne Newkirk Niven says #
    Things I hate that I also do (in no particular order) a) breaking my word (over-committing and then bailing) b) hot-buttoning (bl

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Pantheacon and Leadership

It seems that Pantheacon gives me writer’s block. My first year it took me three weeks to write about the convention. My second year I eventually gave up and wrote about something else instead. After this, my third Pantheacon, I spent two weeks waiting, typing and deleting, and then waiting again.

 

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Annika Mongan
    Annika Mongan says #
    Thank you, Shauna. That is what I will be doing. I had to learn the hard way that while I will hurt people by the mistakes I make
  • Shauna Aura Knight
    Shauna Aura Knight says #
    Keep banging your head against the wall, my friend. That's what I've been doing. If I'd waited for some kind of formal approval to
  • Lizann Bassham
    Lizann Bassham says #
    Yes, yes, and yes!!

Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
What is Soul Retrieval?

One of the secrets of horse whispering is to widen your focus: to be on the horizon as you are also with the horse standing in front of you. Why? Because that is what horses do all the time. This gives horses that mystical presence that we like to cuddle up against, groom, or ride. 

Horses never left their soul. Soul Retrieval is about finding this back in your life.

I needed in my life to research into what it means to be a woman. I went right back to the roots of our culture, and found a field of wisdom and love. The Sacred Feminine. It was more than intellectual research, it was a true journey of initiation. And I initiated many others. I have come to understand my soul is my personal connection to this field, but it IS also the field...it's like a drop which contains the whole ocean. 

 

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I'm Back, and I'm Bionic!

Dear friends and patient readers, I am sorry to have neglected you for so long. But the cause has been a good one! Three decades ago, I injured one knee, and four arthroscopies, lots of PT, and a good deal of pain later, it was time to give up and have the total knee replacement that had been planting itself securely in my path for the last several years.

I spent the latter part of autumn in aggressive physical therapy and preparation for the procedure. The surgery itself was in early December, and I've been rehabbing ever since. I'm doing very (very!) well, but this is a challenging surgery to have and to recover from-- lots of hard work involved. Much pain to be pushed through. I also returned to work months earlier than most people do after TKR; I'm a teacher, and I wasn't willing to be separated from my students for months. So, I gritted my teeth and was back at work only 4.5 weeks after surgery (for reference, most people don't return until 4-6 months postop).

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