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To Answer a Question: Shaman

By Juniper

[Snip] The word shaman comes originally from the Turkic (Tungus or Evenki) word “šamán” and translates as “one who knows”, or possibly more accurately as “priest”. This word has been used by peoples of the Turkic-Mongol and Tungus cultures of Siberia for many centuries. It was introduced to Europe from Siberia to Russia . . . → Read More: To Answer a Question: Shaman

The Great Work or Magnum Opus: The Goal of Alchemy

By Catherine Beyer

The ultimate goal of alchemy is a process known as the great work, or the magnum opus in Latin. This involves spiritual transformation, involving the shedding of impurities, the joining of opposites, and the refinement of materials. Exactly what the end result of this profound transformation varies from author to author: self-realization, . . . → Read More: The Great Work or Magnum Opus: The Goal of Alchemy

Preparing Divination Tools for Use

By Tressabelle

When starting work with a new divination tool, it’s a good idea to take the time to prepare it for use. Even if you’re not a polytheist, you’ll want to cleanse and protect your divination tool from negative influences or energies –and if you are a polytheist, it simply means you believe those . . . → Read More: Preparing Divination Tools for Use

Myth and History in Oikist Traditions: Archias of Syracuse

By Antonella Carfora

In this paper I shall briefly introduce an oikist tradition that grew around the foundation of Syracuse in the middle of the eighth century BCE. Through this we shall try to understand the origin and the circulation of the myth and whether we can find elements based on a historical record. We . . . → Read More: Myth and History in Oikist Traditions: Archias of Syracuse

Those Other People Who Should Not Be Druids

By Nimue Brown

Sooner or later just about every online discussion group for Druidry seems to get round to the idea of how irritating it is that anyone can call themselves a Druid. Those other people, the ones who do it all wrong and don’t know enough, inspire everything from frustration to full on outrage. . . . → Read More: Those Other People Who Should Not Be Druids

Mercurial Matters-How to Rock a Retrograde

By Miss Bri Saussy

Mercury in Retrograde-what is it?

The planet Mercury, like all planets follows an elliptical orbit. Three times a year for about 3 weeks (see a pattern?) there are times when Mercury appears to go backwards in its orbit (it doesn’t really reverse course but it looks like it from our earthly . . . → Read More: Mercurial Matters-How to Rock a Retrograde

Many Christians Are “Pagan”: Philadelphia Archbishop

By Dan Stamm

“Pagan.”

That’s how the leader of Philadelphia’s 1.5 million Catholics referred to “many self-described Christians.”

Archbishop Charles Chaput made the controversial comment while calling for a “new evangelization” during a 3,000-word speech delivered last Saturday at the Junipero Serra (a 19th Century Franciscan priest who is credited with establishing missions in California) . . . → Read More: Many Christians Are “Pagan”: Philadelphia Archbishop

The Age of Blog (Or: Are We That Important?)

By Fire Lyte

What’s the importance of pagan blogs? This is a question posed by blogger Teo Bishop (Bishop in the Grove) on his Facebook feed yesterday. It came about because of a sentiment expressed at Pantheacon by pagan blogger Jason Mankey (Raise the Horns on Patheos) that in the grand scheme of pagandom, pagan . . . → Read More: The Age of Blog (Or: Are We That Important?)

What is Dragon’s Blood?

By Patti Wigington

In many Pagan and Wiccan spell instructions, you’ll see a reference to an ingredient called Dragon’s Blood. Obviously, this is not the blood of real dragons… so what exactly is it, and how is it used?

Dragon’s Blood is actually a resin, which is harvested from a variety of different plant species. . . . → Read More: What is Dragon’s Blood?

Dadoukhoi: Torch Bearers

By Elani Temperance

[Snip] The cult of the Eleusinian mysteries is probably the best known mystery cult of ancient Hellas. We might not know a great deal about what, exactly, went on during the rites, but we know that for Athens–and far beyond–the nine day Eleusinia (Ἐλευσίνια) festival in honor of Demeter and Persephone was . . . → Read More: Dadoukhoi: Torch Bearers