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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in god of the witches

Posted by on in Culture Blogs

 

 

“The Witches' Almanac," a priestess that I know once remarked, sadly, "never fails to disappoint.”

Somehow, I've always felt the same way about the novels of Canadian author Charles de Lint.

On the face of it, this seems odd. Fantasy novels situating Old World lore in the New World...you'd think that I would be all over it. But no. Elves, Green Men, and Moon Goddesses are all very well, but in de Lint, somehow they're all just so much window dressing. The depths, the wisdom, just aren't there.

I find this to be even more specifically true (alas) of Greenmantle, his 1988 book about the Horned God. It's something of an hommage to Lord Dunsany's stunning 1928 fantasy The Blessing of Pan: a lyrical and deeply sad novel about a rural English village being slowly won over to the Wild. The contrast between the two novels, unfortunately, illustrates my point in the starkest of ways. Dunsany's book has both substance and magic. De Lint, instead, tells you how magical things are, but somehow never quite manages to make you feel the magic.

Well, but. Even a stopped clock tells truth twice a day. When you're writing about Himself, every now and then, something is bound to sing. Sure enough, in Greenmantle de Lint nails it:

[The Horned] becomes what you bring to him. If you approach him with fear, he fills you with panic....If you approach him with lust, he becomes a lecherous satyr. If you approach him with reverence, he becomes a majestic figure. If you approach him with evil, he appears as a demonic figure [181].

Transcribing this passage makes me wonder if perhaps part of my unhappiness with de Lint's writing may not stem from the unrelentingly pedestrian quality of his prose. Unlike Dunsany, who was both, de Lint is storyteller, but not poet.

Still, though his language may leave something to be desired, what it says offers deep insight into the nature of this particular god, skin-strong shape-shifter that He is. In Him, you will see preeminently—as de Lint so rightly says—whatever you yourself bring to the encounter.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

 

 

Our rite that night was a Rite of Opening the Gates. That's when I saw the Horned.

He sat cross-legged, as is his wont, on the threshold between What Is and What Is Not. His body was the blue-black of Deep Space, filled with stars. It was as if, from a photo of the night sky, someone had cut out a silhouette of a seated, antlered man. Behind Him, nothing; before Him, the many-colored world. Between the two, one vast Body of Stars.

I don't usually think of the Horned in cosmic terms. I see Him as a transpersonal person, the collective body of animal life here on planet Earth.

Yet there He was: the Cosmic Horned.

 

Opening the back door, I step out into the cold night to pour out the offerings.

Straddling the threshold, I face the stang in the corner of the garden. In the waning moonlight, the forked stake, standing in its cairn of stones, casts a long shadow.

A rabbit sits in the middle of the garden, a moonlit silhouette. Its ears are exactly the length of the stang's horns, held at precisely the same angle. I look at the rabbit; the rabbit looks at me.

It does not move as I pour out the offerings, and close the door.

 

Are we each as a cell in the greater body of a god?

Are there other Horned Gods, brothers and other selves, on other planets?

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

 

 

 

It's an age-old question: Why are some people witches, and some not?

Well, I'll tell you. The answer is simultaneously very simple, and utterly outrageous.

We're witches because Old Hornie sires us Himself.

 

A witch once asked her mother if she could remember anything about the circumstances of her conception.

Oh for godssakes, her mother said. How could I possibly—?

Then she paused. When finally she spoke, it was in an undertone, as if to herself.

So that explains it, she said between her teeth.

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"He is the life is in all living things: in corn, and horses, and men."

(Rosemary Sutcliff)

 

Brothers:

We are priests to a Horned, and Horny, God. Let me now tell you something that they probably didn't teach you—though they should have—in Witch School.

As priests to this god, it's our duty—our joy—to offer to him daily. What, then, is the nature of the offering due the Horns?

There are offerings and offerings. But to Him, god of all red life, the best and most fitting is the life-offering: the seed-pour, the male libation. This is the nature of our priesthood.

You know how magic works: you raise power, and direct it.

Daily you do this: you do it for Him. This is our obligation, the price of our priesthood.

How you fulfill this is yours to you, and not for me to say. But let me tell you this much.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

 A science teacher explains: A shooting star has nothing to do with a star |  Parenting News,The Indian Express

 

We say that long ago, in ages of ages, we had no Fire.

We sat that the Horned looked down from the hearth of Thunder and saw us cold, and in darkness.

We say that he stole the Fire of the Gods, and came down from Heaven like a falling star.

We say that he gave us that Fire, the Fire of the Gods.

We say that this was the First Kindling.

We say that this was the Making of us.

We say that every kindling is that First Kindling come again.

We say that every kindling is for us a Making-Anew.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

 

 

Prayer Before the Kill

 

Great Stag, our Stag, we hunger:

hunger, Lord, for you.

Our Life, our Food, our Beauty:

Father, will you feed?

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In the firelight, our call begins almost as a whisper.

Horned One...Horned One...Horned One...

Borne on the drums, it rises, insistent.

HORNED One...HORNED One...HORNED One....

The witches are calling to their god. Out of some primal core of longing, a hundred voices throb together as one.

HORNED! ONE! HORNED! ONE! HORNED! ONE!

 

From the woods, a horn calls.

He...Is...Here!

A second horn calls, answering the first, then a third. A clutch of people, men and women, emerge from the trees, bearing torches. Riding, unbelievably, above them....

As His bearers approach, their pace quickens. Soon they are running, running toward us.

 

At a distance of more than 30 years, I remember the horns calling back and forth to one another, the bobbing torchlight, the frenzy. I shake my head at the dangers. That wooden palanquin didn't even have edges for bracing the feet. We would never take such risks today, never. Truly, it was a madness, the madness of a god.

 

I know what I would see if I looked at the faces around me: wonder, incredulity, fear.

But I do not look. None of us do. Our eyes want nothing more than what they already behold, the longing of centuries.

On the altar, He shines with firelight, unbelievably tall. His naked male beauty catches the heart. Between His antlers, constellations wheel.

In the wondering silence, His voice is gentle.

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