Life Moves Pretty Fast: Learning to Love the Law

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law. Having a crisis of faith on top of a Saturn's return is a weird thing. The whole purpose of a Saturn's return is to shake your foundations until all the rotten pillars come loose. It's very unpleasant. Part of the process involves you clinging to those rotten pillars as if it were a matter of life and death. You, of course, don't realize that they don't fit your life or feed your soul. It's simply how you expect things to be. And when it … [Read more...]

Carefully Considering Conversion

I mentioned a few days ago that one of the atheist bloggers here at Patheos converted to Catholicism. It's a little bizarre, and a lot of atheists are confused, as well as a few Catholics. And it has me thinking deeply about conversion.The most popular conversion story in the Western world is that of Saul (soon to become the Apostle Paul) on the road to Damascus. It leads us to think of conversion as a sudden thing. A flash of light from heaven, a miracle witnessed, or maybe Chi-Rho … [Read more...]

When Patheos Bloggers Convert…

We had a significant first at Patheos this morning. At least it hasn't happened before to my knowledge. One of our bloggers converted.Conversion is always a big deal. It's a huge personal transformation, and despite the story of Saul on the road, conversion doesn't happen in a flash but is a long process. Converting isn't easy, and those undergoing such a conversion need all the support they can get.So one of our fabulous atheist bloggers, Leah Libresco, has converted to Catholicism. She … [Read more...]

Choosing Paganism and Processing Regret

I'm 30 and it's hitting me hard. Older folks may chuckle at that, but I think we all have birthdays that hit us hard at different points of our life.My life today is not what I would have predicted or hoped it to be, in more ways than one. When I was 14 I would have said that by 30 I would be married to an Evangelical man, be a housewife and have at least 5 children. When I was 18 I would have said I would be living in London, working in a research library and married to a professor. … [Read more...]

Dungeons and Dragons Gets A Makeover

The New York Times is reporting Dungeons and Dragons is getting a fresh makeover, and Wizards of the Coast is seeking fan input.How does this relate to Paganism? Well, it's hard to explain, but it kind of does...I think exploring fantasy and exercising the mythic imagination is an important part of converting to Paganism from another belief system. When you are in the process of leaving the only worldview you have ever known for something very different, having a safe outlet for … [Read more...]

The First Converts to Paganism

Most Pagans living today in the West are converts. We were either raised without religion, or we are apostate Christians, Jews or Muslims. We tend to view the conversion to Paganism as a modern thing, but this is not so. There are two famous converts to Paganism in antiquity.Flavius Claudius Julianus AugustusJulian the Philosopher, known to Christians as Julian the Apostate, was raised Christian but abandoned it as young man in favor of Hellenic worship. A half-nephew of the famous … [Read more...]

Wyrd Designs – King Radbod and the Importance of the Ancestors

This week on August 9th many Heathens who are members of the Asatru Alliance, or who opt to use their calendar, set aside time to celebrate the life and memory of the Frisian King Radbod (680-719 CE), who is a hero to many living Heathens and Pagans today.Christian missionaries came close to baptizing King Radbod, but before carrying through with the ceremony and conversion he asked a question, "Where are my dead ancestors at present?" Wolfram the Christian missionary answered, "In Hell, … [Read more...]

Beltaine & Stuff ‘Round the Web

You know, who knew there would come a day when there is too much going on regarding Paganism to effectively cover? Well, Jason Pitzl-Waters knew, that's who! I am always amazed and impressed when he has Wild Hunt posts covering multiple issues, and even more amazed that I have too much to possibly write about before Beltaine. So here's a smattering of cool things for you...Beltaine and Stuff on PatheosBeltaine is being featured on the home page of Patheos and a round-up of related links is … [Read more...]

Why I Am Leaving Paganism

After a lot of heartbreaking soul-searching, I've come to the realization that I am no longer Pagan. It hurts to admit this but I realize now in my heart of hearts that I no longer believe in Pagan values, Pagan Gods or the Pagan community. After years of struggling with this and trying so hard to muster up enthusiasm here at Patheos, I've reached a point where I can no longer continue on this path. I have to break ties, even though I know this will hurt my coven family and my readers. The … [Read more...]

Happy St. Patrick’s Day? I Don’t Think So.

I was driving around my little town today and I saw that several houses already have decorations up for St. Patrick’s Day, which in the US is about two weeks away. I usually forget all about this “holiday,” and I certainly don’t celebrate it, but this time, seeing the shamrocks and the green paper garlands festooning my neighbor’s home, I decided to sit down and write a little bit about why.I realize that for many people, St. Patrick’s Day is a celebration of Irish pride. I think that’s a goo … [Read more...]