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By Porphyry

A Unitarian Universalist minister I know recently said that one of the purposes of religious practice is to empower us so that we may go out and bless the world . That idea of empowerment as a vehicle through which we both are blessed and bless the world intrigues me. How do we Pagans bless ourselves, so that we may be powerful enough to bless the world?

As Pagans we talk a lot about blessings. Blessed be. House blessings. Blessing the working or tools. We even use “blessings” as an address when closing out letters or e-mails. But what, exactly, is happening when we bless? Who is doing the blessing, and what happens? In the Christian beatitudes there is a whole list of people and traits that are blessed, like the poor in spirit. When we bless what do we place in the recipient of the blessing, and what do we retain for ourselves?

One way to understand blessings is that they are given and received, thus establishing a relationship between the giver and the recipient. Blessings create a social contact between those involved. They are an exchange of magical energy that empowers both the giver and the recipient. The giver is empowered through the creation of the blessing and the contact with the other, while the recipient is empowered by the acknowledgement of a relationship between the giver and receiver, and by the happy generosity that is received. Without the exchange, without the giving, there can be no real blessing.

Read the original article at: Pagan Pages

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