What Really Happens When We Die?

Abruzzo 103

Following an accident in my early teens, I had been stabilized after receiving nine units of blood. Then one night, while lying in a hospital, I began to bleed out for a third time. I soon found my conscious self floating near the ceiling and looking down on my own body as three nurses and a doctor rushed in. They were hovering over my body as I was looking on from above. I found myself in a dark, whirling funnel cloud. The doctor and nurses worked at one end below, while above me the cloud … [Read more...]

Is There Really a Devil?


For the series on "What do I really believe," another question asked whether I believe there really is a Devil? It seems a rather irrelevant question as there is no such purveyor of evil in Roman tradition.  It does, however, recall philosophical questions which pertain to all religious traditions.Epicurus asked:“Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not all-powerful.Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent.Is he both able and willing? Then whence … [Read more...]

The Face of the Goddess

Persephone of Agriento

Continuing in my response to the question “What does God actually look like?” I offer here some examples of my past experiences in meeting with Goddesses and Gods in visions while performing ritual.More than thirty years ago I was introduced to a particular Goddess for the first time. Having completed a ritual, exhausted from dancing, I was sitting naked in a dark place looking into the coals as they began to die down. The fumes began to settle when that small chamber seemed to be filled … [Read more...]

Patheos’ New Sitewide Series: What Do I REALLY Believe?

Junones Matronae

Patheos is holding a sitewide series throughout June and July on “What do I really believe?” About a week ago I received an invitation to participate in the series, and read through the first set of suggested questions.   The questions do not pertain to polytheistic traditions. The questions imply a dualistic world view, one that sees the world in terms of Good vs. Evil, with only one God contending against a Devil. There is really nothing in these questions that fostered dialogue between the var … [Read more...]

The Arrival of Aesculapius

Arrival of Aesculapius

The first of January holds many celebrations for the New Year. Being the first of the year, and first day of the month,  we naturally begin with Janus, the God of Good Beginnings.  Branches of bay laurel, gathered from the sacred grove of Strenua and carried in procession along the Via Sacra up to the Arx. Strenua is a Sabine Goddess of Purification and Health. She is comparable to Greek Hygenia and to Latin Salus. Her cultus  was introduce by Titus Tatius who ruled as co-chieftan  with Romulus. … [Read more...]

Put Your Best Foot Forward This New Year


Whenever a Roman leaves his house he steps out with the right foot first.  Riding in a carriage, entering the Forum, a market, a temple or entering any place, he would always stop and then lead with his right foot. Good beginnings lead to good things. So the Romans believed. This is the origin of our sentiment to "Put your best foot forward" whenever beginning a new venture. That is the idea behind the New Year rite that some practitioners of the modern Religio Romana have adopted.  The Rom … [Read more...]