Polytheism is the Future

pouring offering high res

This summer Patheos has featured a weekly series titled “Conversations on Religious Trends.” Each of Patheos’ eleven channels has addressed an issue of particular concern to its tradition – the Pagan Channel was asked to write on the failure of the environmental movement.For the final week, the editors asked representatives of all channels to identify and comment on the issue of greatest import as you see it. We’re interested in what you are finding most critical within your tradition or mos … [Read more...]

Serving Many Gods

Danu and Cernunnos 06.28.14

When things go well or turn out to be pleasant, we tend to want to do them again.  Sometimes this works well, as when a first date turns into many dates and many dates turn into a lifetime partnership.  Sometimes it doesn’t work so well.  The second piece of cheesecake never tastes quite as good as the first, and a strong desire for cheesecake tends to have a negative affect on your waistline… and on your wallet.And some experiences are the proverbial “lightning in a bottle” – a fortuitous an … [Read more...]

Pagan Worship

Yule altar 2013

In my contribution to the recent discussion on polytheistic theology, I made several references to worship: Do you worship Poseidon or do you worship The Sea?Both are beautiful and powerful and I stand in awe of both.  It seems reasonable to me to worship both.If you say “I’m a polytheist:  I worship The Land, The Sky and The Sea” then I have no argument with you even though your approach is not enough for me.The more I work with the Gods as individuals – the more I pray, worship, me … [Read more...]

A Commitment to the Gods

books 07.10.13

In a sermon several years ago, Denton UU Minister Emeritus Rev. Don Fielding said “there is only the natural world and it is enough.” I’ve always appreciated that about Don – he tells you what he really thinks. At the same time, he’s been supportive of those of us who see things differently. He led the memorial service for CUUPS member James Stevens in 2010 and did a beautiful job that honored James and his Pagan beliefs. Don Fielding is a good minister and a good friend.So it really is with … [Read more...]

Egyptian Summer Solstice

Egyptian Summer Solstice 2012

Last Saturday evening Denton CUUPS presented our Egyptian Summer Solstice ritual for the 10th consecutive year. We had 58 people in the circle, which is very good attendance for us. More importantly, the participation was good and the feedback afterwards was strong.This ritual is a combination of reconstruction and reimagining. The first part draws heavily from the daily temple ritual as presented in the Coffin Texts and Pyramid Texts. Our statues of the Neteru are sealed in a cabinet. The … [Read more...]

Box Pews

box pews in King's Chapel

Cathy and I visited three churches on our recent trip to Boston. Though none of them were thousand year old cathedrals, they were all fascinating places and quite old, at least by American standards.The Old North Church (properly known as Christ Church) is best known as the signaling point that began the famous midnight ride of Paul Revere (and also of William Dawes and Samuel Prescott). It was built in 1723 as an Anglican church and became an Episcopal church after the Revolution. Though it … [Read more...]

Nature Religion?


Is Paganism a Nature religion? Should it be? The topic comes up periodically and recently we’ve had some thought-provoking and comment-inspiring essays, including this one from Sam Webster and this one from Gus diZerega.I’ve given up trying to define Paganism – that’s an impossible task. But in this big tent, there are Pagans who explicitly worship Nature as God/dess, Pagans who include Nature in their worship, and Pagans for whom Nature is at best secondary to their worship of the gods. Ther … [Read more...]

A Modern Pagan View of Sacrifice

offering 04.22.13b

Last week Sam Webster had an excellent column on restoring Pagan sacrifice which drew largely from the ancient Greeks. I’d like to continue that conversation and offer my own thoughts on sacrifice: what it is and why we should do it.Sacrifice has two separate but related meanings. If we are to understand sacrifice, much less practice it effectively, we need to understand both.The common meaning of sacrifice is “to give up.” We pour a libation, giving up the opportunity to drink the wine i … [Read more...]