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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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A Pleasant Disquisition Upon That Inveterate Haunter of Pagan Homes, Known Otherwise as the Altar Creep

We come now to that inveterate haunter of the pagan household, known since antiquity as the Altar Creep.

Authorities agree that the wight known as the Altar Creep takes the form, variously, of a small, round man (or woman) dressed in ritual robes. Whether seen or unseen, it manifests in its actions, to whit: the unfailing tendency of any otherwise unoccupied vertical surface in a house to turn into an altar.

It is said that a certain pagan family in Devon awoke one morning to find that, while they slept, every flat surface in their home had undergone such a transformation.

More often, this process of altarization is a gradual one, but the end is never in doubt: that in time, the house becomes unlivable, since no profane space remains on which to do the practical work of living: exemplo gratia, the preparation of food. This point reached, the sole possibility remaining to the unhappy inhabitants thereof, is to remove to another habitation.

It therefore behooves the pagan householder to avail him- or herself of these powerful prophylactics against said Altar Creep, to whit:

  • Item: The maintenance of a number of flat, unoccupied surfaces in the home, on which no item is permitted to rest for more than a brief time.
  • Item: That such altars as are to be found in the house be faithfully maintained: kept tidy and clean, and in good repair, with offerings duly made and cleared away.
  • Item: That such altars be not suffered to remain ever unchanging, but be constantly renewed and rearranged as the Wheel shall turn.
  • Item: Do not feed the Altar Creep. This is best accomplished by not acquiring more pagan  chatchkes than your immediate environment can bear.

This rune is said to be sovereign against the Altar Creep and is best pronounced while dis-assembling an unintended altar:

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Answering Questions About My New Book Part 2

Here are some more questions and answers about my new book Asatru: A Beginner's Guide to the Heathen Path, and about me and my other books and projects. This book is the ONLY official, authorized new version of my out-of-print book Asatru For Beginners.

With that out of the way, here are some more of the questions and answers. Part 1 of this 2 part series ran last weekend.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Antlers Forever

Gods know that I'm no great fan of Patricia Kenneally-Morrison's Kelts-in-Space series, The Keltiad, but that's not to say that, in her envisioning of what a pagan society might look like from the inside, she doesn't occasionally get things right.

Indeed, sometimes she gets them very right indeed.

PK-M's Kelts-in-Space know of a figure called the Caberfèidh, pronounced CAB-ber-fay. In Scots Gaelic, this means “stag's antlers.” In fact, he's no kind of fay at all—or maybe, on second thought, he is—but rather the pan-Keltic Antlered God Himself.

On Earth, Caberfèidh is the title of the hereditary chieftain of Clan Mackenzie. (“Clan” means “children”: hence, the “children of Mackenzie.” It's the Q-Celtic version of the word that's plant in P-Celtic Welsh, as in Plant Brân, the “children of Brân.”) A pretty felicitous image, this: the clan itself the stag, and the chief the very antlers thereof.

The metaphor is a profound one. That antlers are by nature deciduous, while the stag himself lives on, comments obliquely on the sacrificial nature of the chieftaincy.

Sure, and when it comes to the Caberfeidh, we're of one body with Him, indeed, and He Himself the Antlers.

And if you should hap to meet the Antlers Himself, be sure to say Him so.

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Recent comment in this post - Show all comments
  • Jamie
    Jamie says #
    Mr. Posch, Who knows? Isolated off-world settlements might be ideal locations for pan-Pagan enclaves. Maybe not the future city
Honoring the Dead: Secondary Burial in Minoan Crete

[Content Warning: This post contains a photo of human skeletal remains.]

When we talk about funerals, many of us think of the deceased being either cremated or buried in a grave, and that's the end of the process. But for the ancient Minoans, it was only the beginning.

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Disambiguation: Asatru For Beginners and Asatru: A Beginner's Guide to the Heathen Path

The only official, authorized new version of my book Asatru For Beginners is my new book Asatru: A Beginner's Guide to the Heathen Path. It was published on the 1st of this month by Weiser Books. The upcoming book announced on Facebook by Mathias Nordvig last Sunday titled Asatru For Beginners: A Modern Heathen's Guide to the Ancient Northern Way is NOT my book. I don't know the man, he is not my heir or apprentice, and his book is not my book's successor. Do not be confused.The only successor to my out-of-print book is my new book.

Look for my name, Erin Lale, to be sure you're getting a genuine Erin Lale book. My name is a brand. Erin Lale is a brand you know and trust. I've earned it over the past 2 decades since I first published Asatru For Beginners. Here follows a more detailed timeline for those interested in more of the story.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Hating on Keto 'Pizza'

Help! All the other adults in my covid-pod are on (ugh) keto diets!

Argh!

Really, it's almost enough to make me believe in karma. Whatever I did in my previous lives to deserve this, it must have been awful.

Me, I don't need to be ketoid. I've been vegetarian since I was 18: long enough to see the long-term health benefits which accrue to plant-based eating. (And to be insufferably smug about the fact.) What I've achieved by long-term, my keto-eating friends are trying to get on the quick.

Leave aside the long-term health risks of a high-meat, high-fat diet. Let's not mention that the single most important thing that you can do to reduce your carbon footprint is to become vegetarian: i.e. keto diets are just about the most Earth-unfriendly—really, almost anti-ecological—way that it's possible to eat. Don't bring up the fact that virtually all the evidence shows that the most successful diets in the long run—like, for instance, vegetarianism—are all flexible, and that over-restrictive diets (e.g. keto) have proved to be unsustainable and have a high rate of failure.

The issue here is pizza.

Keto pizza crusts are, without exception, nasty. Oh, some may be less nasty than others, but even the best are still nasty, nasty, nasty.

Keto crusts are for pizza maximalists: people who believe that pizzas are about the toppings.

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Self-Care Spell: Roman Chamomile for Calm

Roman Chamomile essential oil is derived by distilling  fresh or dried flowers of this beloved herb, Another frequently used option is  German Chamomile or Matricaria chamomilla which has much  smaller flowers. The deep blue German Chamomile essential oil is better known for its excellent anti-inflammatory properties. When you read about the splendid healing at European spas, they are using one of these two tried and true favorites. These treatments have been being used for over 2000 years so that is a good indication of how they have helped. Chamomile oil was used by the Roman soldiers to relieve anxiety and to induce a strong sense of purpose as they set out to fight. In clinical trials, this essential oil has been found to be effective in treating generalized anxiety disorder.  A walk in the garden where these delightful little flowers grow is often considered a sure cure for depression. The sweet scent released by this aromatic plant and the sight of the pure white flowers with sunny yellow centers can raise the spirits. Similar effects can be obtained by using ¼ cup of Roman chamomile oil in your bathtub and dabbing a few drops on the pulse points. The vapors can be inhaled or the oil can be used in a diffuser for a generalized effect. Before you step in your Roman chamomile bath, prayer aloud:

 

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