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The Fallacy of Pagan Unity

Erin

Well, up until now I have not been one to comment on the various efforts to Unify Pagans into one big group, mainly because I had supported it.

Yeah, Daven, professional cynic, pagan, Druid and all manner of other things, supported unifying Pagans into a group to do many good works.

Please note what I did NOT say, I didn’t say that I supported the homogenization of Pagandom into something that is acceptable to the Fundamental Christians out there. I did not say that in the process of this unity that I expected to give up my core beliefs to join this group. I did not say that I support one overriding “statement of ethics” like has been proposed various times.

I think that a group of pagans getting together to support a political candidate and contribute to his campaign is a GOOD thing. I think that issuing a press release to the media stating why this group is supporting him could really help at various times, especially if the more moderate Pagans started speaking up. I think that using that influence to set up a Pagan run Mission who does work for the homeless is an exceedingly good idea.

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The Real Origins of Halloween 1 of 2

Erin

(Note from Daven:  I would like to thank Isaac Bonewits for his wonderful essay that encompasses this most important of our holidays.  Long time readers of my website will know that I had another version of this on my site, and I want to tell you that this is the updated version.  Hope it is as informative to you as it was to me.)

The Real Origins of Halloween

Page #1 of 2

Version 3.7, copyright  1997, 2000 c.e.
by Isaac Bonewits

Preface

Halloween OnlineI’ve received a number of emails from various liberal, moderate, and conservative Christians, including two dozen clergypeople, concerning their reactions to earlier versions of this essay. More often than not, they are horrified at the liberties their Fundamentalist brethren have taken with both historical truth and Christian theology, and have asked me to please not think that all Christians, “are like those lunatics.” So in the interests of not alienating those open-minded Christians who may not yet be aware of the duplicity and malice of many of their supposed co-religionists, I’ve edited this to make clearer the distinctions between mainstream Christians (with whom I still have many polytheological differences) and their (dare I say it?) demonically obsessed brothers and sisters. If there are some readers who consider themselves to be Christian Fundamentalists, but who do not approve of the behavior or words of those described herein, I suggest that they admonish their brethren, rather than myself, and that they meditate upon what it is about Fundamentalism that makes it so easy to slide into anger, hatred and deceit in the name of Jesus (or Yahweh or Allah or Science, for that matter).

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Resume

Erin

Well, just got an email from a lady who wanted some very specific information from me, so that she could judge the “correctness” of the Journal by what I had to say. She wanted, in effect, my Pagan Resume’.

So, I’m going to do something that I rarely do and that is talk about myself. BUT, I’m also going to put it behind a “cut” so that it’s not super-public where any idiot with an RSS reader can see it, they actually have to click on a link to get this information.

So, if you are using an aggregator like Thunderbird, click on the link to this post and read it in full if that is what you want to do. If you found this page through the actual blog, then you will have to click on the “more” link below to see the rest of it.

Okay, first off I have to say that this information in here is very personal. The other thing I have to say is that most of this is covered in other places around this site. Next it’s going to sound like I’m name dropping, but I’m really not. Last, believe me, don’t believe me, it’s entirely up to you.

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“Tish! You Typed French!”

Other Author

(Daven’s Note:  I am  unsure as to the copyright status of this particular document, but I have contacted the author several times to request permission to reprint it here, but I have never gotten a response.  I hope that the author will contact me if they have a problem with it being reprinted here.)

Everything I Know About Romance I Learned From the Addams Family

Morticia: “Oh darling, do you remember the emotional roller coaster, the raging hormones, the constant heartache of our first love?”
Gomez: “Yes. Too bad we can’t relive that agony.”

Looking back, I realize that I have learned a great deal from television, much more than I ever did from parents, educators, scoutmasters, the church or even Willie the greasy transient behind the grocery store. Whenever I needed to know how to navigate through life’s stormy waters, television was there.

When I needed to know how to read, count and consider sock puppets as intellectual equals, there was Sesame Street, The Electric Company and ZOOM. Jeopardy, Family Feud and the $100,000 Pyramid helped fill in those gaps in my knowledge that grade school inexplicably skipped. The Price is Right taught me rudimentary economics and comparative shopping, while Emergency! helped me learn the vital importance of having a cool head and thousands of gallons of water under pressure.

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Tarot of Bones

Erin

By Lupa
Self-Published, 2016, $35.00
UPC: 041967093889
Purchase at: http://www.thetarotofbones.com/

Review by Erin

Rating: ★★★★½ 

Full disclosure first: Lupa is a really REALLY good friend of mine, and I’ve reviewed a lot of her works. However, that being said I’m going to be totally honest in this review.

This is a specialty deck. It is nearly an oracle deck, but it isn’t a deck that a new tarot reader can pick up and start reading with. I’ll talk about the several reasons for that in a while.

The artwork shines in this deck. Lupa is a member of the “Vulture Culture”, which is a shorthand way of saying that she works with dead animals. This includes taxidermy, but mostly her art expresses itself in taking bones, leather and fur, and releasing the spirits of those items (if they want to leave), recycling it into something beautiful and selling it to those of us who appreciate this.

So, I have the deck now, and the artwork is GORGEOUS. She took the animal bones and other items she uses in her artwork, assembled them into a display and had them photographed for the various cards. This is 78 different assemblages, and there’s an extra card that she had made as a thank you for those who supported her Kickstarter. So that’s 79. And they are beautiful.

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Harry Potter, Narnia, and the Lord of the Rings

Erin

By Richard Abanes
Harvest House Publishers, 2005 $11.99
ISBN 0-7369-1700-4

Review by Daven

Rating: ★☆☆☆☆ 

I shouldn’t be disappointed. I knew what I was getting into. I knew this was a book about the evils of witchcraft and Harry Potter from a fundamental Christian perspective. I knew all this, but I still hoped.

I had interacted with Richard Abanes through a weblog. Specifically a discussion that ensued at Wildhunt.org. The exact thread is at “My Falacy is Made of Straw” (and I know it says “No comments”, but trust me, there are comments. Click the link and you will see them.) Yes, I know that I don’t come across in the best of light, but as you can see, there is baiting on both sides.

Well, I talked to his publisher and got a copy of the book. I read it. Man is it disappointing.

It is not that the author is a poor writer. Far from it, Richard is an engaging and convincing author. It’s not that he has his facts wrong, for I’m sure that he did the research required for this book. That information is available, and it is footnoted as well, but I didn’t have the time to go behind him and look up all the citations he states.

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Full Moon Rite

Erin

[Erecting the Temple is performed. Priest and Priestess kiss.]

Priest: Now is the time when the Moon is full, signaling and lighting this night of our meeting. Let us call upon Woden and Freya to smile down upon us and pour forth their Love.

[Priest and Priestess raise their Seaxes high.]

Priest and Priestess: Woden and Freya!
We honor you; we love you!
All that you do
We know you do for out good.
So let all that we do
Be for the good of Thee.

[Priest lowers his Seax and kneels in front of the Priestess. She keeps her Seax aloft.]

Priest: Lovely Freya,
Known by so many names to so many men.
As different times and in different places—
Aphrodite, Bride, Cerridwen, Diana,
Freya, Ea, Melusine, Isis—
All these and many more
Were the names by which you were adored.
Yet do we know you as Freya,
And in that name is it meet that we worship you.
We adore the spirit of you, and of your Lord,
In Love and in grateful thanks.

[Priestess lowers Seax and raises Priest, kissing him. She then kneels before him.]

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Persecution

Erin

I was thinking about a snark I did yesterday on Persecution, then a friend posted about persecution on her LJ and it got me thinking:

Pagans really don’t have a candle to hold to anyone on the persecution scale.

I heard this piece coming into work this morning on NPR:
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=6349532

One of the things that struck me is that the fighting between the Suni and Sheite groups is causing diversified communities to be one or the other. Steve Inskeep, the comentator on that piece said “in some communities, the clensing….is complete.” Meaning that one sect KILLED OFF the entirety of the other sect, or forced them out.

Part of the process is to grab people off the street, call their homes and ask relatives to confirm that their loved one is Suni or Sheite. It’s a crap shoot as to whether or not they get home at that point.

Consider this for a moment. You as a pagan are sitting in your house. You get a call. On the other end of the phone you hear a voice you don’t recognize who tells you they are with the “Freedom Feris” and they have your loved one. They then demand that you confirm that your loved one is Black Forest Tradition. You know that if you say the wrong thing, then you are never going to see that loved one again, until you identify the body. What do you say?

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Late night, Post Yule, Pre Christmas post

Erin

Today in the “Daven” household, things were pretty quiet. I did have some excitement though.

Mostly it was the shopping trip. It takes so little to make those we love so happy. I went grocery shopping with my wife. That was it. She was thrilled. Why? I have no clue. I think it was because we were spending time together, even though I was ranging around getting stuff and she was driving the cart from point A to point B. But we talked some and thought about things like we did when we were young (like year 1 or 2 of our 15 year marriage).

Then we got home and had dinner that she lovingly fixed for everyone, with help. Cookies came after dinner, again lovingly fixed by my dearest. If you ever get a chance to marry a Kitchen Witch, do so. You WILL NOT regret it.

While Saturday is “bonding night with the daughter” they had anime on that I didn’t like too much. So while paying about 20% of my attention to the TV and talking, I was reading on one of the review books, Taylor Ellwood’s “Pop Culture Magick”.

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What Pagans Believe

Irreverend Hugh

A response to Keziah Thomas’ What Pagans Believe page.

When I originally wrote my response to Keziah Thomas’ “Ex-Pagan 4 Christ” site, I thought I had found nothing particularly offensive or wrong about her “What Pagans Believe” page. Upon revisiting, I have found many errors. The following are my responses to the entire article, here printed in full for ease of reference, in the hopes that Christians would stop being so sloppy with their research. As a practitioner of Neo-Paganism for several years, I feel it is important to counter such pages and publications as these with the facts. Enough is enough. Some of us Pagans are getting tired of the prejudices of those certain very vocal fundamentalist Christians who exhibit abject discomforts over the idea that other religions and ways of thought exist. To those types of Christian, I can only say that I hope you take your own moral injunctions seriously and stop bearing false witness against your neighbor.


Ex-Pagan 4 Christ
What Pagans Believe
Pagans subscribe to a vast number of different beliefs, and Christians should not assume that all pagans believe the same things. Pagans even argue among themselves about what the definition of “pagan” is so it is hard to catalogue what they all believe.

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