When I collect anything from the wild I do like to leave an offering of some sort. If I am in the woods or fields I don’t often have anything to hand so I give the plant or tree a blessing and a thank you....
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A Shinto practitioner shares a basic prayer for beginners. One visitor to the Michigan Pagan Festivals reports on it afterward. And portable shrines for traveling Pagans make their debut. It's Watery Wednesday, our weekly segment for news about the Pagan community. All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!
Caution: Rant Alert.
Och. The Olympics just haven't been themselves since the barbarians took them over.
Every four years, the International Olympic Committee—the world's third most corrupt international body (after the Vatican and FIFA)—rakes in billions in bribes and awards the quadrennial Summer Games to a municipality which then bankrupts itself building white elephant sports venues that will never be used again.
I say, move the Games back to Greece. Permanently.
Last week I began exploring Minoan ecstatic postures, starting with the most famous and familiar one: the Minoan salute. Many modern Pagan traditions use specific poses and gestures in ritual in much the same way that some varieties of Christianity use the gesture of making the cross. These are meant to symbolize parts of the spiritual belief system and to remind us of those during the rite. Ecstatic postures look very much like ritual gestures - in fact, they can be used as ritual gestures - but ultimately they have a different purpose.
A ritual gesture is a pose or motion you make briefly during a religious ceremony. If you hold it for a few seconds or maybe a minute, it might give you a particular feeling or sense of something sacred. An ecstatic posture is a pose you hold for an extended period of time while undergoing ecstatic (shamanic) trance. If that sounds really deep and freaky, it's not. Most people can enter a light trance state simply by focusing on their breathing for a minute or two. A little drumming in the background helps to deepen the state. You don't have to take drugs or go through extended initiations in order to use these postures to expand your spiritual experience. If you've ever done a guided meditation, you've been in trance....
The original god of thunder returns to reclaim his mantle in Marvel's The Unworthy Thor. Tor takes a look at the source material for AMC's supernatural TV series Preacher. And the popular Little Witch Academia animated one-off by Trigger gets expanded into a full-length TV series. It's Airy Monday, our weekly segment on magic and religion in popular culture! All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!