Pagan Paths

The morning sun rising in the east calls to the Bright Youth in me, and the Bright Youth responds. The full moon calls to the Muse, and the waning and dark moon to the Dark Maiden who is a part of me. The earth I touch with my fingers calls to the Mother, in both her guises, Nurturing and Devouring. The bright green shoots rising from the earth and the green leaves on the trees on my street in the spring, these call to the Stag King, while the red leaves fallen to the earth in the autumn call to the Dying God. The spring storm that rises up suddenly in the west calls to the Storm King. The night sky, the dark space between the stars, calls to Mother Night, my death come to make peace. The gods-without call and the gods-within respond.

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5 Questions for an Archetypalist Pagan

Posted by on in Paths Blogs

I recently came across these five questions posed to "Pagans who believe that the Gods are merely psychological archetypes and are created by the mind of [hu]man[s]." I will answer each in turn. (But first, let me say that I object to prefacing the word psychological with the word "merely" -- something I've written about before here.)

1. Do you believe that the Gods can assist you with anything physical in nature? If so how can the Gods assist you with anything physical in Nature given that they are only psychological?

I believe that the gods can manifest as physical symptoms, for the same reason that psychological conditions manifest physically.  I do not believe in magic, causing change at a distance without corresponding physical action.  This applies to us and to the gods.  So if the gods want to move something physically in the world, they will need to use our bodies to do it.

2. Do you believe that the Gods can assist you in areas of the world where human population is sparse?

Yes.  Every person contains within them a pantheon of gods.  We carry this around with us everywhere, even to the proverbial desert island.

3. Can the Gods assist you upon death?

I don't believe in the survival of consciousness after death, so this question doesn't make sense to me.

4. Do your Gods exist after humanity goes extinct?

No.  Although there may be other species that have their own gods -- like whales and apes perhaps. 

5. How does your Gods relate to Nature if they are psychological?

Nature and psyche are the same thing, but seen from different perspectives.  Psyche is nature seen from within.  Nature is psyche seen from without.  So the gods of nature and the gods of the psyche are one and the same.

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John Halstead also writes at (Patheos),,,,, and The Huffington Post. He was the principal facilitator of “A Pagan Community Statement on the Environment” (, and the editor of the anthology, Godless Paganism: Voices of Non-Theistic Pagans. John is also a Shaper of the fledgling Earthseed community ( To speak with John, contact him on Facebook.


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