Pagan Studies


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Studies Blogs

Advanced and/or academic Pagan subjects such as history, ethics, sociology, etc.

Posted by on in Studies Blogs
Reflections on 2016: Life, Death, Netflix and Hope

Reflections on 2016: Life, Death, Netflix and Hope

I confess that although I did not write a great deal in this blog in 2016, there were certainly plenty of things going on in my life and in my world. It would be an easy way out to say that the events of this year simply rendered me speechless, and I doubt that there would be many who would argue with me on that. Personally, I hit many milestones and manifested a number of things I had been hoping to achieve. However, the harbingers of doom and despair came in the form of the deaths of many artists who influenced my life, and the lives of many others.

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Posted by on in Studies Blogs
Winter Cold

As the solstice comes upon us here in the Northern Hemisphere our thoughts turn to surviving the cold. While it's considerably milder here in Scotland than it was while I was teaching in New York, cold it is and cups of tea provide welcome warmth. It's hardly surprising that people in the Middle Ages measured their lives in winters survived. In many ways the mid-winter celebrations offer a chance to celebrate that hope and restore it for the lean months ahead.

It's the perfect time to consider the Anglo-Saxon poem The Seafarer, which I think of as a companion to The Wanderer. Both elegiac poems that mourn a lost past, they celebrate the power of the comitatus, the loyal troop of warriors and find poetic resonance in the harsh world of winter.

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Posted by on in Studies Blogs
A Polymorphous Perverse Journey

Years ago, when I was much younger, I read Rita Mae Brown's Ruby Fruit Jungle, where I first learned the tern "polymorphous perverse." At the time, I thought it was a term created by the author to describe her emergent sexuality, and I always thought perhaps the term applied to me as a polyamorous, bi, pagan female. It wasn't until years later that I learned the term was actually coined by Freud to denote people who are able to find sexual gratification outside of accepted societal norms. I was elated to learn that the term could still apply to me, which is why I've decided to use it to name the oracle deck I've been creating.

(By the way, I was gone for awhile. Did you miss me? I've had my head buried in projects like these! I'm back to tell you all about them). 

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Posted by on in Studies Blogs

Performing artists, familiar with the backstage areas of theatres - where illusions of sumptuous grandeur are exposed as shams of cardboard, canvas and crayola - are apt to imagine with Shakespeare that “All the world's a stage.” Or in movie terms, that life is like “The Truman Show” - a soap opera with hidden cameras. There is more going on behind the scenes than anyone suspects.

 

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Francesca De Grandis
    Francesca De Grandis says #
    Bless you. You are a work of art.
  • Ted Czukor
    Ted Czukor says #
    So sweet of you, Francesca, to give me a promotion in the field. I've been called a piece of work before - but this is much better
  • Francesca De Grandis
    Francesca De Grandis says #
    LOL, I love it!
An Integrated Model of Wellness for Difficult Times

“What drains your spirit drains your body. What fuels your spirit fuels your body.” 
― Caroline MyssAnatomy of the Spirit


As a chaplain working in a healthcare setting, I am intimately familiar with the current efforts to include the emotional and spiritual aspects of health into a more traditional allopathic medical model. In many respects, we are seeing great progress as integrative and functional medical models are starting to incorporate more holistic and alternative treatments like reiki and acupuncture in treatment plans for patients. But what does it mean to have an integrated model of health? And why is that so important in times of distress, especially now around the holidays and as a result of current political events?

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Posted by on in Studies Blogs
A Sermon on John 6: 48-59

I am still deeply affected by the events of this week, and I'm struggling to reconcile my feelings around what is going on in our country right now. How larger themes of racism, sexism, xenophobia, transphobia, and hatred have permeated the fabric of our nation so completely. Working where I do in and amongst conservative Christians as a Pagan is a challenging and often times exhausting endeavor where showing up is half the battle. 

I was on call the morning after the election news broke, and in our case, whoever is on call that day delivers the morning devotional in Chapel that morning. I've done a variety of offerings from my tradition and they have all been warmly received, but on this day I wanted to present something that spoke to deeper bonds of fellowship and used common language I knew would connect with my colleagues and yet would remain true to my identity as a Pagan. I presented this piece I had written in my Gospel of John course at Iliff a few years ago:

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Posted by on in Studies Blogs
Meditations on Hávamál: 81-84

81.
At kveldi skal dag leyfa,
konu, er brennd er,
mæki, er reyndr er,
mey, er gefin er,
ís, er yfir kemr,
öl, er drukkit er.

At evening shall one praise the day / a woman, when you burn her / a sword, when you test it / a maid, when you give her [to a husband] / ice, when you cross it / ale, when it's drunk.

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