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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in Animal Sacrifice
PaganNewsBeagle Watery Wednesday Community News Nov 5

In today's Watery Wednesday post, we concentrate on news about our Pagan communities and their allies. Big changes at the Wild Hunt; Pagan scholarship prizes; crowdfunding a Pagan funeral; SilverRavenwolf vs. Facebook; and animal sacrifice in Paganism, pro- and -con.

Big news on the Pagan Media front: The Wild Hunt founder and frontman Jason Pitzl-Waters steps down and leaves the keys to TWH media kingdom with new editor Heather Greene.

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  • Anne Newkirk Niven
    Anne Newkirk Niven says #
    Thanks for the note, I stand corrected.
  • Terence P Ward
    Terence P Ward says #
    Heather Greene has been the managing editor of The Wild Hunt for a year now, taking the operational reins when Jason Pitzl-Waters
The Vegan Pagan: The Case Against Animal Sacrifice

In light of recent Pagan conversations around the blogosphere on the topic of animal sacrifice, I thought I'd skip ahead in the Vegan Pagan series to offer the animal-centric perspective I had scheduled for January. I'll be back on track next month.

Good Samhain to all!

- Ceallaigh


Modern Paganism has more than a few bloody roots. The early Celts practiced both animal sacrifice and human ritual killing1 and might well have engaged in ritual cannibalism under extreme circumstances, as historical and archaeological evidence attests.2 3 Elaborate human sacrifices were performed at the temple in Uppsala and elsewhere in Northern Europe as late as the 10th century AD, and there are well-documented accounts of animal sacrifice as well.4 5 The early Greeks may have engaged in human sacrifice or human ritual killing and certainly engaged in animal sacrifice.6 These are only a few among many examples, as students of pre-Christian religion well know, and they collectively represent a disquieting piece of theological history. However, while most Pagans will agree that cannibalism, human ritual killing and human sacrifice are better abandoned to history, the practice of animal sacrifice has been reconstructed by a few sects of the Pagan community.

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  • Sage LeFaye
    Sage LeFaye says #
    I'd like to echo James' sentiment with thanks, as well. Your Vegan Pagan posts are so vitally important. Please continue writing a
  • C.S. MacCath
    C.S. MacCath says #
    Thank you so much, Sage! I took the month of December off to meet a couple of writing deadlines, but I'll be back in a few days wi
  • James Taylor
    James Taylor says #
    Thank you so much for writing these Vegan Pagan blog posts Ceallaigh, they are so amazing and well written. I'm very much looking
  • C.S. MacCath
    C.S. MacCath says #
    Thank you so much for your kind words. They mean a great deal to me, and I'm glad the series is resonating with you. As for the b
PaganNewsBeagle Faithful Friday Sept 12

Today is Faithful Friday here at the Pagan News Beagle, the day we share interesting stories about religious communities around the world. Our stories today include the launch of the new Polytheist community website; a call for papers on Pagan and Goddess studies; animal sacrifice outlawed (in part of India); Chinese Buddhist brand building; American Muslims meet (and integrate better than Muslims in Europe.)

The new website Polytheist.com launched recently and hopes to offer a variety of columnists (the site eschews the term "blog") from across this diverse movement.

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Nepal: A Country of Holy Cows, Monuments and Spiritual Mountains

Nepal: A Country of Holy Cows, Monuments and Spiritual Mountains

 Bangkok, Thailand. I stood viewing the sunset’s stream of pastel colors from the deck of my hotel after sitting in an airplane all day. I had departed from Vancouver, B.C. and my bottom was sore. My energy field was depleted because of tight seating arrangements and stifling conditions on the aircraft. I fell into a soft bed and asleep straight away thereupon though and when I awakened rubbing my sleepy eyes the next morning it was still dark out. I dressed, repacked my bags and grabbed a coffee at the hotel kiosk on my way to the waiting cab. I got in and in a few minutes I was at the airport once more and aboard Asian Airlines flight 399 to Kathmandu, Nepal, a place that my neighbour loved to visit and often talked about. I was going to Nepal to find my spiritual connection in an exotic place. The questing torch that I have held high for many decades burned brightly and I was excited to explore another powerful place on planet Earth. It was 1996 and I had just healed my ovarian cancer with the potato, Reiki and other dietary measures and was feeling robust. My husband was with me, he liked to tag along with his globetrotting wife. It was mid January, and our return tickets were for the end of March.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The Buck Above, the Buck Below

French Inquisitor Pierre de Lancre wrote that at the Basque Sabbats the Devil himself presided at mass. At the moment of Consecration, he would cry out: This is my body! Then he would lift the Host, which was black, round, and stamped with the Devil's image (de Lancre specifies that he lifts it “on his horns”), and those present would fall down in adoration and cry out, twice repeated, a mysterious four-word phrase, which has rung down the history of witchcraft ever since.

In his account of the Basque trials, de Lancre transcribes the Basque words as:

Aquerra Goity, Aquerra Beyty

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs

My apologies that it has been quite a while since  last posted a blog here on PaganSquare. I have been posting daily on my blog, but I have also been very busy with gradating and securing a job. The first part has been completed successfully, and the second part is well underway, so it's time to resume posting here.

today, I want to talk about the mēria (μηρια), a very specific portion of an animal sacrifice which was given to the Theoi in ancient Hellas. This portion consists of both of the animal's thigh bones in their fat, which was placed on the altar, sprinkled with a liquid libation and incense, and then burned. The scented smoke was said to sustain and please the Theoi, and the sacrificial smoke also carried the prayers of the worshippers to Them. The mēria is a very specific portion, and today, we will discuss how it came to be so, and how it related to actual sacrifice.

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  • Jamie
    Jamie says #
    Thanks for sharing! Your posts are always read... I'm not planning to sacrifice an animal anytime soon, but the subject is fascin
  • Elani Temperance
    Elani Temperance says #
    I'm not planning on animal sacrifice either, Jamie, but like you said, the practice tells us a lot about the ancient Hellenes, and

Posted by on in Culture Blogs

Over at Patheos, Sam Webster wrote a most engaging essay on the revival of the Pagan concept of sacrifice. The article starts with the traditional and ancient concept of animal sacrifice and continues on to more symbolic sacrifices such as invocations and acts of service. Naturally, it was the part about animal sacrifice that generated the most comments, many thoughtful and appreciative, and quite a few that were angry and accusatory.

It’s not a surprise that some people have a natural revulsion to the kind of blood sacrifice practiced in the religions of the ancient world, and in some branches Paganism and Afro-revival religions. We have little exposure to death in our industrial world, and what exposure we do have is from the media ie. news, film fiction, and video games. Last week’s episode of Game of Thrones concluded with a scene of violent and dishonorable death, and more than one person I know found it deeply disturbing and unnecessary. (For the record, so did I) I’m not sure how realistically GoT portrays a feudalistic society, but the version we see on HBO is certainly nasty and brutish.

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  • Ruadhán J McElroy
    Ruadhán J McElroy says #
    Religious animal sacrifice increases the level of care. Increasing the level of care increases the level of caring. To give what w
  • Joseph Bloch
    Joseph Bloch says #
    I can't agree with you enough, and in fact I posted on this very same issue back in December. Animals that are killed as part of t
  • Dver
    Dver says #
    Animals not under human care don’t ever die nicely. Oh thank you so much for a (sadly rare) reasonable and intelligent post on th

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