Describing the Indescribable

Following on the heels of the Catholic grandfather whose nine year old granddaughter is a soft polytheist comes this very good essay by rabbinical student Joshua Stanton titled “Finding Language to Describe God.” He says:My belief in God and ability to describe God are not necessarily correlated. During profound spiritual experiences, I am often least capable of describing what makes them feel spiritual. The awe of the moment can eclipse -- and even temporarily suppress -- my ability to give wor … [Read more...]

The Paganism of a Child

Star Foster found this beautiful story of a Catholic grandfather whose nine year old granddaughter is praying to the Greek gods – apparently because he gave her the Percy Jackson series of novels. Explaining it, the nine year old said:When I am at the beach near the water, I feel close to Poseidon. When I am in a thunderstorm, I feel close to Zeus. When I see a beautiful person, I feel close to Aphrodite, and when I hear someone really smart or good with weapons, I feel close to Athena. It’s all … [Read more...]

Building a Real Religion

Jeff Lilly had a Google+ post yesterday (that I apparently can’t link directly to) where he pointed out the tendency of online discussions to degenerate into “a zero-information signal, i.e. a statement that is either unverifiable or just false.” In the Pagan community, he says thisalways comes back to (1) discussions of how “real” the gods are, or (2) how persecuted Pagans are. Both of these ultimately concern the issue of legitimacy: is Paganism a “real” religion? [emphasis mine]If you read th … [Read more...]

Imagined Insults – A Pagan Rant

One of the supposed advantages of Paganism is its inherent plurality and tolerance. Ancient pagans understood different people in different lands had different gods – there was no need to “convert” them. Modern Pagans understand Cernunnos called me and Isis called you and Ganesha called someone else but we can still get together to celebrate the seasons and work together to care for the Earth.But apparently it’s not that simple.Last Saturday Brendan Myers had a guest post on The Wild Hunt where … [Read more...]

Is There an Augusta National in Your Life?

The Augusta National Golf Club was in the news yesterday when they admitted their first female members: former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and financier Darla Moore. The playgrounds of the 1% of the 1% may seem irrelevant to ordinary folks, but there’s a lesson in this for all of us – and it’s probably not what you’re thinking right now.For the benefit of those who haven’t followed this issue, here are the basic facts. Augusta National is one of, if not the most famous and most exclusi … [Read more...]

Mystery Teachings from the Living Earth

John Michael Greer is the Grand Archdruid of the Ancient Order of Druids in America, a Druid in the Order of Bards Ovates and Druids, a Freemason, and a Bishop in the Universal Gnostic Church. He once said, only half jokingly “some people collect stamps. I collect initiations.” Couple that with Greer’s detailed study of Peak Oil and its implications for our relationship with the Earth and you have a very good background to write Mystery Teachings from the Living Earth: An Introduction to Spiri … [Read more...]

Corporate Sustainability

A factory in Sweden in 1995.  A place I visited on business, but not part of the corporation I work for.  This was in January.  It was cold and dark.The corporation I work for has released its first Sustainability Report. It’s a public report, but I’m not going to link to it or tell you how to google it – I don’t mention my employer’s name anywhere on the internet. It’s not a hostile place to work (as corporations go, it’s pretty decent), but they don’t want their name associated … [Read more...]

Bad Science Makes Bad Religion

West Kennet Long BarrowLupa at No Unsacred Place has a very good essay titled “The Dangers of Talking Plants” where she rants (softly) against the bad science we see from many New Agers and more than a few Pagans. I encourage you to go read the whole thing, but I’ll repeat her closing paragraph.we can continue to have plant spirits and totems, and gods of the harvest and field. There’s nothing wrong with that. But let’s not use half-arsed studies about “talking plants” to try to prove that the s … [Read more...]