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Posted by on in Studies Blogs
One Real Gripe, Two Frustrations

My gripe-du-jour is about people who volunteer to take on a task or role and then disappear.  I know it’s true that with all-volunteer organizations such as most Pagan groups are that the out-of-site-out-of-mind rule applies.  A volunteer leaves a meeting or gathering or festival full of zeal and ready to take on the work of whatever project(s) the group is planning.  That person may even have been provided with documents, mailing lists, etc. with which to accomplish the task(s).  He[1] may even have taken on the responsibilities of an officer within the organization.  Then he gets home and more immediate concerns distract and derail him.

This phenomenon was more damaging to Pagan efforts at organizing prior to the advent of the Internet.  For instance, within CoG, source of most but not all of my experience, membership applications must be timely processed or the applicant will wonder if her papers were even received.  And when a newsletter published eight times a year is the primary, and only official, vehicle of communication within the organization, getting every newsletter to the membership is critical.  Of course, today we can renew memberships online, and the newsletter editors of recent years have done a splendid job.  But back in the day such lapses in accomplishing volunteer tasks could have a negative impact on the group at large.

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  • Terence P Ward
    Terence P Ward says #
    I definitely read -- and write -- posts that are shorter, and I harbor no guilt about that whatsoever. I've read hundreds of page

Posted by on in Studies Blogs
Meditations on Hávamál 1-4

Hávamál offers us a glimpse of a past that had already become somewhat nostalgic when a single hand transcribed the poem around 1270 CE.  As David A. H. Evans writes in the Viking Society for Northern Research’s edition of the verses, this second poem of the Elder Edda “is deservedly one of the most celebrated works to have survived from the early Norse world.” It’s full of gnomic advice that continues to be of interest—and application—to us in the modern world. Old Norse text via the Heimskringla Project.

1.    
Gáttir allar,
áðr gangi fram,
um skoðask skyli,
um skyggnast skyli,
því at óvíst er at vita,
hvar óvinir
sitja á fleti fyrir.

2.
Gefendr heilir!
Gestr er inn kominn,
hvar skal sitja sjá?
Mjök er bráðr,
sá er á bröndum skal
síns of freista frama.

3.
Elds er þörf,
þeims inn er kominn
ok á kné kalinn;
matar ok váða
er manni þörf,
þeim er hefr um fjall farit.

4.
Vatns er þörf,
þeim er til verðar kemr,
þerru ok þjóðlaðar,
góðs of æðis,
ef sér geta mætti,
orðs ok endrþögu.

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  • Byron Ballard
    Byron Ballard says #
    This is what I needed today. Blessings on your dear head, Laity.
  • Kate Laity
    Kate Laity says #
    You are most kind, my friend.

Posted by on in Culture Blogs

(I'm going to double up for a week or so, and post these notes on Samhain prep at my home site and here.  Those of you who are kind enough to read both may feel you're seeing double for a bit. )

As I'm readying myself for this hard and sacred time, I'm reviewing my daily practice and wondering if it is optimum for keeping me focused and open.

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs

I was going to write something completely different for this post but it didn't come off of the ground. I was over-thinking everything I was writing so for this post, I am just going to write from my heart again, even if it's not overtly Hellenic. I'm going to be writing about the little, negative, voice inside our heads and hearts and how to quiet it for long enough to be brave.

I was not born to blog or journal. I love to write, but I mostly write to be someone else for a while. This is why I love to role play. Still, I did some pseudo-journalism a few years back and I enjoyed that very much, but even then I realized that I have difficulty writing about topics I am not an expert on. I'm scared every time I hit 'publish', but I hit it none the less.

Honestly, I never thought I'd be blogging for so many of you. It makes me very feel very happy, very blessed and it also scares me shitless on days when I write about something emotional, controversial or about the Hellenic community at large. I am not an expert at Hellenismos. There are a lot of people who have been at it longer, practice in a group and/or who have come to a consensus on issues. I just read a lot. I practice a lot, too. I have my daily rituals, my festivals and my books. If you're struggling with some (online) bravery issues as well, then maybe I can offer some words of guidance and encouragement.

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  • Christine L Berger
    Christine L Berger says #
    I consistently read your blogs and appreciate your sharing. This one was very timely as I have been in a period of rapid change a
  • Elani Temperance
    Elani Temperance says #
    Thank you for your reply and reading my blogs. It means a lot! I want to wish you all the best with your situation. Be brave!

Posted by on in Paths Blogs

A cross-post this week, if I may - between here at my first blog 'home', and the wonderfully eclectic 'Witches & Pagans' site (because if you can't 'moonlight' as a Pagan, then who can?).

I am very aware that I haven't written anything at either location for a couple of weeks. I could give excuses - ultimately, the days have flown past and life has been more important. I'm sure we all know how that goes. Instead, take a wander with me, if you will.

Regular readers know that one of my favourite places for inspiration is as I walk the dog across the hilltop where I live. This evening I wandered the streets, looking out at the fierce clouds parting after an intense rain and thunder-storm just a few hours ago, the remnants of a rainbow, and the slightly 'stunned' feeling of a normal, modern, country village after a violent and unavoidable incident of Nature. The grass is rich and green, the snails appear to have made a small bypass across the path outside one particular row of houses, and the occasional early bat is swooping overhead.

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
I am not a Pagan community blogger, although I attempt to do so, on occassion, on my own blog. I tend to collect a few of the issues and then comment on them in one post. I did for the veiling, body-fat and Jesus debacles as well as for the 'competence vs. sincerity issue'.

The trouble is; that community is not my community. Yes, it's Pagan, it's on-line so I can reach it, but it's also (mostly) American. I am not American; I'm a no-nonsence Dutchy. In general, we are very down to earth. We're hard workers. We keep things inside. We don't hang our dirty laundry out on display. We persevere through the hardship and complain only about the weather. We don't get riled up easily and when we do, it's frowned upon.

I don't like giving my opinion. I'm very Dutch in that regard. I'm much better at providing information. I collect information like the stickers, the rusty nails, the discarted paper and the Lego from my youth. I organize it, catalogue it and group it together in a post. I collect information on topics which touch my mind or heart. I suspect my blogs are not an easy read for everyone; I tend to give little introduction to my blog posts, nor do I frame them with my opinion. I don't tell you what to think about a topic. At most, and on rare occassion, I will tell you what I think about a topic. I leave judgement to the reader.
 
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  • Anne Newkirk Niven
    Anne Newkirk Niven says #
    I did not feel you were being unfair to PaganSquare; I've working hard to broaden our scope of contributors (and hopefully readers
  • Jamie
    Jamie says #
    I second that. Thanks for your posts!
  • Elani Temperance
    Elani Temperance says #
    Thank you for your kind words!
  • Anne Newkirk Niven
    Anne Newkirk Niven says #
    You are a wonderful blogger, Elani, and I've already learned a LOT from you. Not engaging in the "frack-up de jour" isn't really a
  • Elani Temperance
    Elani Temperance says #
    Thank you, Anne, and please know that I was not being critical of PaganSquare at all! It's more a testiment of the whole of the Pa

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