Culture Blogs


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Culture Blogs

Popular subjects in contemporary Pagan culture and practice.

Category contains 2 blog entries contributed to teamblogs
TROUBLED TIMES, LIGHTWORKERS and CRYSTALS - revisit

Well, I found myself wondering what I was going to blog about this week, and found a post I wrote about troubled times, Lightworkers and crystals from one year ago.

Things are even MORE shaken up and crazy than they were this time last year...

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The Anvil of the Horned One

“That's the anvil of the Horned One,” a friend wrote to me recently, meaning a hard, but ultimately formative, situation.

As regards the situation, his analysis was bang on, but in the days that followed I've found myself reflecting again and again on that resonant phrase: the anvil of the Horned One.

In Old Craft, the God of Witches is (inter alia) a Smith-God: among his many by-names is Coal-Black Smith.

Back in the day, goes the story, when you had to cloak everything in the Church's names and stories, he came to be called—and so still is, by some—by the name of the Biblical smith, Tubal Cain. “The Clan of Tubal-Cain,” Bobby Cochrane (father of modern Old Craft) called his Royal Windsor coven: one clan in the Tribe of Witches.

The point here is that, as god of animals, he's also god of culture: the originator and teacher of the civilized arts. (Humans aren't the only animals possessed of culture, of course.) Hence smithery: the anvil, tongs, and hammer are his tokens.

Yet there's more than mythology here.

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  • Kile Martz
    Kile Martz says #
    KM is honored to be your muse for this particular post. ~ O, let me suffer on the anvil of the horned one so that he might forge
Your Personal Power Tool: A Crystal Wand

A magical wand is a powerful tool used to cast the circle and invoke deities. Like an athame, a wand focuses, projects, and directs energy. Because it gathers and stores magical power, a wand is wonderful for healing and can also be the device with which you “draw” the shape when you cast the circle. If possible, find your wand in a serendipitous manner. Draw it to yourself through attraction. A wand makes a mighty gift. It may, however, be more practical and expedient just to purchase your wand. When you do this, purify it, cleansing off the energy of the shop, so it is truly yours.

Before you race off to the nearest metaphysical five-and-dime, take a walk in the woods. You may very well find the wand of your dreams waiting there for you on the forest floor. Some folks favor “live wood,” like cherry, willow, or oak branches that need to be cut off the tree. I prefer fallen wood that Nature has already harvested. Some folks like to ornament their wand with magical metals, such as copper, gold, or silver, and encrust it with gems and crystals. The most important determining factor for any wand is how it “feels” in your hand. You will know when you have found the right one.

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In Praise of Festival Romances

As summer festival season begins in the Pagan Northern Hemisphere, I sing in praise of Festival culture's magical child, the Festival Romance.

Festivals are magical, places of discovery: hotbeds of intensive growth, where Pagan Modernity recreates itself.

In so charged an atmosphere, people meet. How can they help but fall in love?

Here, in a place where time runs differently, how should a love not run its entire course—birth, consummation, and death—all in a few shining days?

There's love and love, as there's life and life. Life in the temporary pagan village is good; so too is life in community at home.

So too with festival romances. Some fruit into ongoing partnerships. Most don't, but there's no shame in that. A flower is no less beautiful because it bears no fruit.

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The Bible's Most Famous Witch

She's by far the most famous witch in the Bible.

So, the king is in a bind.

He has prohibited all forms of divination on pain of death, but now he needs someone to divine for him. The kingdom next door is about to invade, his long-time counselor is dead, and he needs advice.

“Find me a witch (ba'alat 'ov),” he tells his servants.

“There's one at Endor ('Eyn Dor, 'Spring [of] Dor*'),” they tell him.

So he disguises himself and goes to see her.

“Raise someone for me,” he tells her.

“What, are you trying to trap me?” she replies, cannily. “You know the king has forbidden such things.”

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Mariah Sheehy
    Mariah Sheehy says #
    I remember asking *why* all these various arts were forbidden in Sunday school, and why if we believed in religious tolerance/free
  • Mike W
    Mike W says #
    I love it Steve. I guess that Maurice from Bewitched and Nicky Holroyd from Bell, Book and Candle were powerful media role models
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    I once read an article in which the author tried to identify the different types of magic in the ancient near east. It has been a
  • Jet
    Jet says #
    Very well said. I love your sense of humor. That being said: I enjoy learning where the name of the witch Endora came from. I had
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    Thanks, Aunt Vyv. The trendy, jet-setting witches of Bewitched were indeed a revelation. And, one could say, a prediction. A dear
Pagan Feng Shui for Peace of Mind

We live in anxiety-producing times. Of that, there is no doubt. What can you do about it, hug a crystal? Actually, it may be an excellent idea as crystals can bring calm. Come to think if it I might need to surround myself with turquoise for the grounding and centering I need right now.  Stones placed in strategic places around your home can help accelerate the change you desire in your home and in your life, Using what I call “crystal feng shui,” you can place a crystal or a geode in the appropriate position of your home to facilitate specific results. For example, amethyst will promote healing and release any negative energy that is clinging on.  Clusters of jade or yellow “lemon quartz” will activate vibrations of abundance and creativity.

 

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Fortune, Empress of the World

The stately magnificence of the hymn to Fortune (Fortuna Imperatrix Mundi: “Fortune, Empress of the World”) with which Carl Orff's 1935-6 pagan oratorio, Cármina Burana, both begins and ends, either belies, or comments ironically, on the over-the-top quality of the lyrics.

In this not-very-literal rendering, I've attempted to forefront this tone of self-parody. The speaker is a poet who's down on his luck, and in response hits back with both fists.

For all the good it does.

 

O Dame Fortune

 

O Dame Fortune, Queen

of it all: like the Moon

you wax and wane,

always in flux.

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