Wisdom & Wisecracks of the Old Ones

“No Greek sacrifices an elephant or a camel to the Gods—because Greece does not produce camels or elephants.” That’s Porphyry, quoting someone much smarter than himself. It explains a great deal about religion in general.Once someone asked Victor Anderson why he used a red tablecloth on the altar. He replied, “Because I had a red tablecloth.” “Beware lest these teachings be divulged to uneducated people. For dew teachings sound more ridiculous to the ignorant  . . . or more profound to the … [Read more...]

On Gnosticism, the Book of Shadows, and Sex

I received a few days ago my monthly statistical report from Patheos on how many hits I received last month, total, per day, per blog, etc. My total has been running just under 5,000. If I get up to 12,500, I start getting paid (hint, hint). It was interesting to see that the greatest number of hits were on two blogs: “On Jesus as a Gnostic” and “Some New Pages for the Book of Shadows.” I suppose I might garner some more hits if I expand upon those particular topics. I also see I’ve written somew … [Read more...]

Of Blogging and Poetry

Now that I’ve been blogging for a few months, I have some opinions about it. I’m grateful that Star recruited me to do this. I’m glad to have more of my writing out where people can see it. But I’m not entirely happy with how this is going. The initial concept was that this would be paying work—if I got enough hits. I probably won’t. Serious writing about things religious does not attract a mass audience, unlike action thrillers and other children’s literature.Q: How should one score the soun … [Read more...]

Spiritual Maturity for Pagans—and Everyone Else

Many years ago I ran across a “scale of spiritual maturity” that was both theoretically interesting and useful in practice. I’ve never able to relocate it. I thought it was called “The Myers-Briggs Scale . . .” but searching on that turns up nothing but their Jungian personality typology, which seems to be neither more nor less scientifically valid than the Enneagram or one’s natal chart. Each of these, like many other systems, relies on intuition in order to be of any use.However, I clearly … [Read more...]

Of Pagan Spirituality and Addiction

If you have the misfortune to be both Pagan and an addict, you may face the hurdle caused by the mistaken notion that Alcoholics Anonymous and other Twelve-Step programs are inherently Christian or at least monotheistic in nature. I hope here to lower that hurdle.The seed for AA came from Carl Jung, who had been working with Roland, who could not stay sober. Finally Jung suggested to him, as a last resort, that sometimes people who had a conversion experience were able to stop drinking and … [Read more...]

Pagan Theology: The Problem of Anything

I have been arguing with myself about posting about the matters herein discussed. I am sure many readers will ask, “What in the world does any of this have to do with Paganism?” Since my overall agenda is to argue that current Paganism is just as genuine a religion as any other, I need to demonstrate that a Pagan theology can provide adequate answers to the fundamental questions that any mature religion must be able to answer. Perhaps many people will find the content of this and subsequent blo … [Read more...]

Another Three Pagan Poems

Morgana at her Vanity (for Erif)Damp from the chastening water, She oils her skin, humming A wandrous tune that breaks, Then resumes, as her musing eye spies, Then dispells, each threat of a line In her face, in the polished brass mirror. She combs out her sea-raven hair With sharks' fins, brushes With bristles of boars, Charcoals her eyebrows to arch and point, Powders her eyelids with sea-blue chalk, Rouges her nipples, lips, and nails Of hands and feet with the locust-red … [Read more...]

Three Pagan Poems

After that last series of essays, I will just lighten up a little. On a Very Mixed Party at Bob and Bill’sAt first the dopers and the gays each thought The others were straight, then everyone decided Everyone else was cool, and the party warmed up.At one point ten girls were, two by two, The only ones dancing: flamboyant Maggie, Milly, Bev, the German girl who lives with Maggie, The blonde whom Rupert had been trying to pick up, The little birdlike girl who shies a … [Read more...]

Aphrodiphobia, Part V: Toward the Divine Sexuality

In one of the preceding essays, I said that a totally committed couple, in the moment of mutual orgasm, may “feel the edge of the ecstasy of a full enlightenment.” In a full enlightenment or awakening, the barrier between the ordinary self and the Deep Mind (I think that’s a more accurate name than “collective unconscious”) vanishes: one feels one's immortality, one's eternal safety, and the ecstasy, an order of magnitude greater than that of the ecstatic couple, that I think is the continual st … [Read more...]

Why Wicca Is a Major World Religion

Gerald Brosseau Gardner, that strange retired Englishman, created Wicca because he could not find an adequate religion elsewhere. His museum contained hundreds of pamphlets from various minority religions, and dozens of documents about his memberships, initiations, and ordinations; he had been actively searching for many years. He did not create it out of whole cloth; he used many extant materials, but the structure he and his friends gradually evolved from the late 1930s to the early 1960s was … [Read more...]


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