Adventures in Wortcunning: Smelling Roses

'Betty Boop' Rose

The oldest roses are still available today. Rosa gallica, called the ‘Apothecary Rose’ was the type mentioned by Greek historians and used in dark age monastery gardens and found too in medieval physic gardens. This is the type most used for the fragrance of their essential oils and in healing preparations at the time. And today, when the roses bloom in Bulgaria, armies of old women go to the fields picking 250 lbs of petals to distill for each single ounce of essential oil. [Read more...]

Wyrd Words: Pagan Life Lessons – Adaptability

helmet joke

Our community can be very opinionated. Everybody who has ever bothered to peruse the Pagan Blogosphere (or seen more than two Pagans try to have a conversation) knows that our community is constantly arguing with itself. In matters of religion, it’s easy to become stuck in a specific line of thinking. When someone calls into question an idea which we hold dear, it’s normal to feel defensive. That’s perfectly natural (and completely understandable), but it’s important to know how to choose our battles. The knee-jerk reaction that causes us to shut down and play defense can also keep us from taking in important new information. [Read more...]

A Pagan Short History of Valentine’s Day

Cupid in a Tree, by Jean-Jacque-François le Barbier. Public domain

Valentine’s Day is not regarded as a particularly Pagan holiday, although some of the ideas and practices around it have their roots in Paganism. In this guest post on the Agora, James Lindenschmidt, a regular contributor on our A Sense of Place blog, shares some information about the history and origins of the holiday. [Read more...]

Jewish Witch: Ancestors and Genocide

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There are only so many prayers you can say for the dead before, like the dybbuk of Jewish legend, they begin to graft themselves onto you. [Read more...]

Seekers and Guides: A Few Books that I Think Every Witch Should Read

bookshelf

One of the most common questions a teacher of the Craft will be asked is, “What books should I read?” Sable Aradia has a few suggestions. [Read more...]

Jewish Witch: Finding Asherah

Asherah

It breaks my heart whenever I hear modern Jews talk about the end of Israelite paganism with relief and back-patting, as if the worship of a beloved goddess were akin to alcoholism or online poker. [Read more...]

Seekers and Guides: Happy Anniversary Patheos!

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Sable Aradia looks back at her Patheos Pagan experience in celebration of Patheos’ 5th Year Anniversary. [Read more...]


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