Religion, spirituality, and the big ball of mud

Scouts Canada, Toronto contingent to the 4th Pentathlon Jamboree Fredericton New Brunswick. User:WayneRay and Harry Gatley, Quartermasters for the Jamboree.

Religions are organic, they grow with and in culture – and if people rip the ideas out of context, they lose meaning and coherence. Religions are like languages – deeply embedded in culture and history; sometimes they have their own culture. Even religions that claim to be universally applicable arose at a particular time and place because of specific theological, philosophical, and spiritual concerns. [Read more...]

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Spirituality – let the buyer beware

Sunrise with Hasidim by Nosha

Every time I have an encounter with someone who has an interest in spirituality, and also possesses power over others, I find that they want to silence my anger at injustice because it is “not spiritual” to be angry. I find myself bruised and diminished by their criticism of my way of being in the world. Any engagement with the intellectual or theological or historical context of an issue is also silenced by these people, because that is “not spiritual” either. [Read more...]

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A Dance of Impermanence: Introducing Myself in Two Chapters (Otherwise Titled, Why Am I Here and Who Am I, Anyway?)

Me, with Tree

New contributor, Sarah Sadie! “I went into the class defining myself as a loose-ish, pagan-ish follower-ish of an undefined goddess figure, and I more or less believed that all the gods and goddesses are really archetypes. I changed my mind pretty quick when I was approached by Wayland the Smith, a more-than-mortal figure about whom I knew nothing.” [Read more...]

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Pagan prayer

Pagan Prayer by Gixajin on deviantART

A prayer can be nothing more than time taken to set an intention for the day, or to contemplate the day’s events before going to sleep. It can be time spent communing with a deity, or holding others that you care about in your awareness and wishing them well. It can take place at your personal altar, or just in your head. It can be spoken or unspoken, formal or informal, and involve stillness or movement. It can involve descending into your own depths to find a connection with all-that-is; or it can be reaching out to a deity or spirit of place. [Read more...]

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Pagan sacraments

Handfasting by Gordon

A rite of passage is a ritual designed to make sacred a particular life event or transition from one stage of life to another. We might also call these rituals ‘sacraments’. Most Pagans presume that everything is already sacred, because deities are immanent in the world. Therefore, rituals of consecration are about creating extra sacredness, or reconnecting us with the deities, the community, or the natural world. [Read more...]

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Occupy Spirituality: Reflections from a Once and Future Activist

Occupy-Spirituality-Final-Front_hi-res25

_Occupy Spirituality_ makes me feel old. But I know that there will be a future when my children are no longer small, and with my own needs and desires firmly in mind, I will again try to create communities of alternative values beyond my household and the circle of influence created by my job. For now, it’s been good to remember how brightly that inner activist fire can burn. [Read more...]

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Individuation in Pagan traditions

Yin and yang tree

The aims of Pagan traditions with regard to the self, soul, spirit, consciousness and its relationship with the Universe are different from that of other religions.
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