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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in temple

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The Secret Temple

The secret temple stands in the heart of the war zone.

Few people even know that it is there.

Through the chaos, the mayhem, the uncertainty, the liturgies continue.

May the people have life. May the people have food. May the people have beauty.

Twice daily, the priest makes the offering and prays on the people's behalf.

May the people have life. May the people have food. May the people have beauty.

In all times, year in, year out, the liturgies continue.

May the people have life. May the people have food. May the people have beauty.

Now, in time of conflict, to the three traditional prayers, the priest adds a fourth:

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Minoan archaeology: It's still a thing

When I talk with people about the ancient Minoans, I find they often believe that everything we know about ancient Crete was dug up by Sir Arthur Evans a century ago, and that's it. But that's not the case.

Evans is famous, sure, but did you know that the Minoan site at Gournia was originally excavated by the American archaeologist Harriet Boyd-Hawes? Work at the site was still ongoing this summer (2019). In fact, work at a lot of Minoan sites is still in progress, and we're learning and discovering more all the time. Here's a sampling of what's happening these days in the world of Minoan archaeology:

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Time and a Little Incense

Did you know that you've got people making offerings on your behalf every day?

At the Temple of the Moon, that's what we do.

Here at the Temple of the Moon, we offer and pray twice daily, morning and evening.

At each offering, along with the more specific prayers, we pray for the well-being of pagans everywhere, old and new alike.

That means you. Remember that next time that you're feeling stressed.

And, of course, we're not the only ones. In temples and shrines across Pagandom, the same thing happens every day.

Know them or don't, people are offering, and praying, for you. Every day they do this: and, indeed, across the world, our numbers grow daily.

You, too, can join this worldwide offering.

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  • robert
    robert says #
    Blessings and Thank You!!!!!

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Building the Temple of Your Dreams

OK, here you go: I'm writing you a check. I want you to build your ideal pagan temple, spare no expense.

So what would it look like?

Would it have columns? Standing stones? Would it have a dome? Would it even have a roof at all?

What is it made from? Wood, stone, brick? Poured concrete?

What is its footprint? Is it circular? Square? Rectangular?

What's around it? A grove? An encircling temenos wall? Gardens? Is there a sacred spring, a sacred tree, a sacred stone?

What does the inner sanctuary look like? Is it large, the gathering place of many, or is it small and intimate? Are there windows? Is it dark and private, or filled with air and light?

What existing temple does it most resemble? Stonehenge? New Grange? Karnak? The Parthenon?

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Recent comment in this post - Show all comments
  • Jamie
    Jamie says #
    Mr. Posch, My ideal temple would be inconspicuous. An ordinary commercial structure hidden in plain sight, preferably near a rive

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Pagans, Pagans Everywhere

And this year's award for Most Beautiful Working Pagan Temple goes to...the pagan community of...(drum-roll, please)....Armenia!

The Temple of Garni, shown here, was likely built during the 1st century CE as a temple to Mihr (= Mithras). Toppled by an earthquake in 1679, it was reconstructed between 1969 and 1975, and has since become the national shrine of the New Pagans of Armenia. They hold rituals there regularly and, in fact, are in the process of planting a sacred grove of almond trees around it.

Now that's style.

Yes, there are pagans in Armenia. There are pagans everywhere. Check out the Wikipedia page on the Armenian community and follow the links at the bottom. You'll be amazed at where they take you.

Ossetia. Daghestan. Kirghizistan. Mongolia. Across Central Europe and Central Asia, New Pagan movements have sprung up since independence like mushrooms after rain, as people ponder their post-colonial identity and direction. Tengrism—the traditional shamanic worship of Tengri, Blue Father Sky—has undergone a massive resurgence across the steppes of Asia. In some countries, pagans actually constitute a substantial percentage of the population.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Every Shrine Needs a Keeper

Every shrine needs a keeper.

Shrines are busy places. Someone needs to sweep away the ash, compost the wilted flowers, remove the food offerings before they go bad.

In a timely manner, mind you, but not too soon. Part of the joy of shrines—part of the encounter that takes place there—is the evidence of the worship of others.

Another part of the keeper's job is to decide. Not all offerings are, shall we say, worthy.

The plastic, the cutesy, the distracting: they've served their purpose. (The worth of the offering is in the making.) Off with them to the favissa. (The Romans had a name for everything.)

After all, they've been given: they belong to a god now. Worthy or not, they still need to be treated with respect.

That's why there's a special pit for sacred garbage.

You can be a shrine-keeper, too.

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Sealed with a ... seal

When I was a kid my mom used to write my name in permanent marker on the tag inside my jacket so everyone would know it was mine. We monogram pillowcases and purses; we register the serial numbers of electronics with the manufacturer. We sign deeds to homes and titles to cars. There are many, many ways to identify things as 'ours' these days, but have you noticed that they all involve writing?

In ancient Crete, most people couldn't write. Sure, they had a writing system, the famous-but-still-undeciphered Linear A (and a hieroglyphic script to go along with it, also still undeciphered). But as was common in the ancient world, only the scribes and perhaps a few wealthy people knew how to write. Writing simply wasn't necessary for most people in their daily lives. But it was necessary for the big temple complexes - they had to keep track of all the donations people made, how much each plot of farmland and orchard produced every year, and so on. So they wrote things down on clay tablets and probably also on papyrus as well, though none of the perishable papyrus has survived as far as we know (I'm still hoping for a secret cache in a sealed jar somewhere). But the Minoans also did the ancient version of writing your name on your jacket tag: They used seals.

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