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From time to time the topic of Pagans and Sacrifice comes up in various forums online. Unfortunately, the majority of people (including pagans) who talk about Sacrifice don’t seem to understand about sacrifice. Most think of sacrifice (in the connotation of Pagan religions) as dealing with human sacrifice or animal sacrifice. While those are ancient practices and valid forms of sacrifice, they are not all that is.

First we need to understand the definition of sacrifice. Sacrifice means simply “to make sacred”. It is from the Latin root and in modern times it is defined as giving up something of value to gain something you wish.

Pretty cut and dried, but when it is translated into Pagan Religion, all anyone can see is things like the Wicker Men of legend, bog drownings, burning bodies and cattle dropping dead.

Because of this persistent vision of what sacrifice is, the act of sacrificing something to the Gods has a VERY bad reputation.

But let’s think about this for a few moments. Sacrifice does not have to be bad, since it’s done all the time by most Pagans.

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An Open Letter to Young Seekers

An Open Letter to Young Seekers

Merry Meet!

If you are under 18, you will probably already have noticed that young folks generally elicit different reactions from adults in the Pagan community than what you’d like. You’ve probably had a great deal of difficulty finding someone to answer your questions honestly, or a respected teacher who is willing or able to teach you what you really want to know.

Following is part of the general information we make available for young seekers. If you have any questions, we will do our best to answer what we can, but please understand if sometimes the answer is “you really need to ask your parents.” (If your parents support your interest and would like more information about Wicca, please have them contact us. Or bring them to a Laughing Cat meeting, where they can ask questions and meet members of the local Pagan community.)

We hope you can understand that without knowing your parents, and hearing directly from them that they support your interest in Wicca, an ethical teacher or mentor cannot work with you. Most groups and private teachers don’t accept seekers under 16 or 18. (Some even require you to be 21 — or even older!)

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Random Name Generator

By Theresa (Mary)

Inspired by and dedicated to Lady Pixie Moondrip, with humility and gratitude to her for her most sage council regarding the most important task of choosing a craft name.

This generator is exactly 99 names long, do no seek to tamper with the numerology so carefully wrought, for 99 is 3 3’s twice and when added together 9 + 9 = 1 8 and when added together 1 + 8 = 9 also. It took at least 5 minutes to dream that up and I don’t want my hard work spoiled!

You must use the generator 3 times only for again it is the fulfillment of your spirit guide/totem/guardian/teacher/deity’s wishes for your craft name.

NOTE: There are 6 columns and 17 lines this means that there are 3 blank boxes. If you have randomly chosen a blank box, this indicates that ______ (insert name of deity that you worship here) wishes you to only have 2 craft names and not three. When you are ready and have worked really hard the 3rd or even 4th name will be made know to you by _____ (insert name of deity that you worship here)

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Sisters of the Dark Moon

by Gail Wood
Llewellyn Publications, 2001
ISBN 0-7387-0095-9

Review by Daven

Rating: ★★★½☆ 

Well, this certainly lives up to it’s title. This is a book designed for all those out there who wish to explore the “darker” side of femininity.

While in and of itself, this is not a bad thing, there are any number of ways this could have been presented. Personally, I think the author did a wonderful job presenting it as she has.

For an overview, the book takes the Moon cycles of the New Moon (Dark Moon) and writes a series of rituals to perform to explore the Goddess aspect that she feels is associated with that moon. So, in the month of May, we have a ritual that can be done to get us closer to the Dark Aspect of the Gemini Moon. Working with the Goddess of that moon, The Twins who are the focus of Gemini, and other mythological aspects that are linked with that season’s moon.

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The books that stand the test of time

I began thinking about the books of Paganism that affected almost everyone that I have met about four months ago. I had planned to write this article for at least that long. The more I looked at this subject, however, the more I realized that everyone’s list of which books are THE Pagan/Wiccan/Druidic/Dianic/what-have-you references is different.

(I must add here that the hyperlinks in this document either lead to Amazon’s site where you can read reviews of these books, or to an online version of the book in question.  I included these links for your reference only.  On your own head be it.)

So, all this article can tell you is my list of the most important books in modern Paganism today, why and hopefully this will coincide with some of what you believe.

In most cases, I have not chosen for anything other than a book that has stood the test of time. Does this book still have fans who will go out and purchase it for use today? If so, then it is probably here. But this is only the cream of that crop, and as we go through this list, I will explain my choices to you all.

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The Mysteries of the Ogham

(Note from Daven:  This is an excellent article on one of the basics of Celtic Life.  The Ogham.  It is the basis of most of their poetry, literature, and their knowledge.  Look it over and look over that which we have on the Druids, and I think you will start to agree with me.)

The Mysteries of the Ogham-Part One

By Kenneth R. White

The script known as Ogham (oh-m) may have been a product of the Celtic peoples coming into contact with cultures who had already developed a written language; however, it is more than likely that the script developed independently. We know that the Druids used the Greek alphabet for private matters, committing none of their lore to writing. Most of our present day knowledge of Ogham comes to us from the Book of Ballimote, which was written in about the fourteenth century. Like the other texts used to teach medieval students, its sources are far older and lost to us. Ogham is to a long and cumbersome a system to use for writing large texts. The practical use of ogham seems to have been limited to ceremonial or short inscriptions. The physical evidence suggests that Ogham was used for short inscriptions and in fact there are many such examples carved along the edges of stones. Most of these Ogham stones are found in Ireland and Wales though there are a few of them located in Scotland and England. Since Ogham is not practical for writing by hand there must have been some other use. This is where we begin our journey into Ogham as a spiritual or magical system. The Ogham letters themselves were said to have been created by the God Ogma, after whom they are named, From a seventh century Irish text, Auraicept na n’Eces, we are told:

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Losing brains over snow

I used to live in Atlanta. They don’t get a lot of snow there. So when this came out in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, I laughed until I couldn’t breathe.

So, in honor of the snow that is getting dumped on my current residence and in most other places in America, I share this article with you.


I take no responsibility for any damage you do to your computer or anything else while you read this.

Face it: Even the hint of snow makes us all go a little nutzo
Date: February 6, 2005
Publication: Atlanta Journal-Constitution, The (GA)
Page Number: ZH2
Word Count: 704

So they’re predicting some winter weather for our fair area this weekend. If you aren’t from Atlanta let me tell you that we are a very winter-dysfunctional people.

I’m not proud of us in the winter. The anticipation of snow is overwhelming. We really rarely actually get snow but we look forward to the possibility of a chance of snow every year. We have no release for our overwhelming need and want to have snow so that even when we get a small flurry, we go absolutely nutzo.

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Lesson 2; Altar Basics Part 2

<— Continued

Message: Thalada,
Author: Cainte – Daven Iceni

Date: Apr 28, 2000 12:22

Yes, I understand perfectly where you are coming from.  I too carry a “Sacred Space” around with me all the time.  I have my altar in my head, as well as a Shrine, and a “crash kit” for emergency rituals.

However, let’s start at the beginning.  That’s a pretty advanced attitude that takes years to develop.  Baby steps before driving a car….

LOOHTA  (Laughter of one heart to another)

Message: Druid Shrines
Author: DJW – OllahmLaoich Urchurdan
Date: Apr 28, 2000 19:02

Daven Said:
“As to Druidic practice, I have no idea.  I would assume from archeological evidence that the Druids used SOME kind of Altar during their worship, but there is little evidence that I know of.  (If anyone has evidence supporting this, please let me know about it.)”

The only thing that comes to mind are the ‘Nemed’, probably more in line with the shrine concepts than the altar. There’s not much to go on concerning altars. But there were holy places. Places seen as ‘between’ were important (where water meets land, caves, wells, etc). There are instances of offering pits (some going for many meters underground), and certain spots in rivers where offerings are found. Also, trees have been repositories for gifts, eg. colored cloth.

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A Circle of Stones

by Erynn Rowan Laurie
Megalithica Books, 2012 $19.99
ISBN 978-1-905713-77-6

Review by Erin

Rating: ★★★★½ 

I love reissuances of books that have become classics because the publisher and the author has a huge chance to make sure that they are correcting anything that is wrong with the original edition, if they decide to take that step. Personally I don’t think this actually needs any revision.  It started out as a good book and continues to be a good book.

Ms. Laurie has done a wonderful job of explaining Irish spirituality in such a way that it is not threatening to the new student.  As I read through it, I found that many of the things contained in these pages were almost directly from what I was taught when I started my Druidic studies, and I wondered at the plagiarism, but then I realized that her book actually predated my studies by nearly a decade.  I guess I have to talk to my teacher about that.

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Find a teacher; join a coven…Simple, right?

(Note from Daven:  Blacksun has a formidable reputation in the Pagan community, almost as good as Searles O’Dubhain, Mike Nichols, and Isaac Bonewits.  I respect his opinion and his thoughts.  I have read this article in it’s entirety, and can’t find anything to criticize.  I hope it helps you in your seeking.)

Find a teacher; join a coven…Simple, right?

by Blacksun

If you are new to the Pagan community, or if you are thinking about working with others, please read this. This writing is directed toward the ever growing number of people who are anxious or “desperate” to join in to the Pagan community but who also might make foolish choices about with whom they choose to be affiliated.

There is a great deal of activity in the Pagan scene these days. Everywhere one turns, there are this and that “grove,” “coven,” “circle,” or whatever, offering all kinds of inducements and seductions to those who are attracted to our religion and sub-culture. But many times, at public gatherings or just in private talk, I am asked why it is so difficult to get admitted into a traditional coven (grove, circle, whatever… I’ll just use the word, “coven” from now on) or why it’s so hard to find a good “teacher.” Or the person will say something like, “I’m desperate! Could you tell me who’s accepting students right now?” These questions make me wince inside. What I would say to people who ask them follows.

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