Duncan

Dawn and I have recently moved from a large city to a mini farm in a rural area.  We have always revered nature and consider ourselves as Earth’s stewards.  Living closer to the Earth and becoming more in tune with the land, we feel a stronger attachment to the Old Religion and celebrate it among ourselves.  As of now, we’re the only ones we know and hope to learn more and find other folk who share our ways and our beliefs.

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Any recs for books that focus on core skills?

I’ve hit a point in my studies where I’m being told that I need to go back to the basics. Having read a few 101 Wiccan and non-Wiccan books, I feel they didn’t quite cut it for me since they were more of a sampler platter of magical miscellany. I would greatly appreciate any recs, no matter the medium!

On a side note: I’ve read about Jason Miller here on the forums and would like to know your thoughts on his works. Was curious if they had the same tone as the blog he maintains? I’m interested in all his books, but I’m wondering which one to start with.

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Notre Dame fire and restoration of religious sites

I think we’ve all heard by now about the fire at Notre Dame cathedral in Paris. Talk about restoration work has already begun, and it has me wondering: will they rebuild it as closely as possible to the original, or will they go with more modern designs or materials?

I could see it going either way. It’s not the first time this has happened. St Peter’s in Rome burned down in the Renaissance and was rebuilt in the then-contemporary style. The idea of historical preservation of buildings is fairly recent, and was in part inspired by Notre Dame itself (and the novel that was written about it).

So a historical reconstruction would be a propos to the building itself. On the other hand, Notre Dame is not a historical artifact; it’s still very much in use as a church. So there’s an argument to be made that a restoration should reflect the living community.

This also got me thinking more broadly about restoration of religious sites. I was reminded of an old documentary about restoring Tibetan temple paintings, particularly this bit:

Quote

Sanday’s conservators did not intend to restore areas where painted images had flaked or eroded away, but in some cases they needed to rebuild and prepare sections of walls for painting or line drawing. The Raja, or King, of Mustang and the townspeople of Lo Monthang stressed that they wanted to worship entire, not incomplete divinities. It was agreed that, in order to meet international restoration standards while accommodating the wishes of the local people, some of the lost areas would be plastered and painted, to form linkages and continuity across small gaps. More expansive lost areas, often the lower portions, were completed only as line drawings without color fill, however, in order to restore the functional integrity of the paintings without attempting a “restoration.”

So there was disagreement there between the ‘preserve as-is’ attitude of the conservators and the local people’s view of the paintings as part of their current religious practices.

Does anyone else have thoughts on this?

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Psychic Ability Tarot Spreads and Card Interpretation

Hello!

I tried a tarot spread for psychic ability today.  I drew three cards to stand for three questions:

1. Do I have any psychic abilities?
2. What abilities might I have?
3.  How should I use my abilities?

I pulled:
1. The Star
2. The Devil
3. The Hierophant reversed

We were chatting about this in the discord chat and the idea of feedback from the larger community turned this into a thread (hopefully).

I’ve found one other spread: The Psychic Eye

Set up like this:
The Psychic Eye:

***********1************

2 *********456**********3

***********7***********

1. What does having a psychic gift mean to me?
2. Which psychic ability do I currently possess?
3. What ability would I most like to develop?
4.5.6. The Psychic Eye – What do I need to do to develop this ability or How do I work on making this ability stronger?
7. What I need to beware of when using this ability.

Would love feedback on any spreads used for this, any insight into specific cards with psychic significance/indicator cards, just tell us what you think about any of it!

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What would your specialist subject be?

I’m frequently impressed with how knowledgeable many TC members appear to be and it inspired me to make this thread.

I don’t know if you guys in the US etc have the TV show Mastermind, but it’s quite famous here and the contestants choose a specialist subject to be quizzed on: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mastermind_%28TV_series%29 / https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b006mk1s

So, what would your specialist subject be?  (Can be related to your paganism or just a general topic (or both, if you like).)

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Resources: Gods absorbed into other cultural and ritual contexts

I’m interested in articles and even books about cultures who absorbed gods from foreign cultures, but I’d like to start with articles on the Internet if there are any so that I can get a bit of a grasp on the subject before I start delving into books, especially since I’m already trying to finish a few books that it seems I’m never going to get through…

What I’m really curious about is if those gods — any gods at all — were absorbed into new contexts, myths, and religious structures that were different from their original contexts and ritual structures.  I’m pretty sure I’ve read about this kind of thing before but not enough to get any specifics.

Could I possibly get any recommendations from others here who are more knowledgeable than I am on this subject?

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Hello!

Hi! I’m a college student living in the southern US.

I’ve been looking around at Pagan sites and books for a few years, but have really only begun actually practicing recently. Currently I’m an Irish polytheist and specifically worshiping Lugh; there are other deities I’m considering reaching out to, but I’m trying to take it a bit slow while I’m still learning. 

I’m introverted and a bit shy, so I’m trying to push myself to be more interactive. At very least I want to seek out more communities where I can ask questions when I have them, and this seemed like a good place based on what I saw when reading through some threads prior to joining.

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Interpreting Hellenized/ Romanized Gods

Hello all,

I’m currently starting on a fascinating book titled “The Supreme Gods of the Bosporan Kingdom.” By Yulia Ustanova. It is already shaping up to be a fascinating yet confusing read.

The book deals with temples and religious art of the Bosporan kingdom, built by Greek colonists in the far northern region of the Black Sea. Today this would be the southern coast of Ukraine and southwestern Russia. The culture described is a syncretic one combining Greek and local Scythian elements.

One of the main subjects of the book is the “celestial Aphrodite” or Aphrodite Ouranos who appears to have been very popular there. There’s also an anguipede (snake-legged) female figure who seems to have been conflated with Medusa, yet worshipped as a Goddess. Some of this stuff seems pertinent to modern Russian folklore. Yet while the wealth of Greco-Scythian art offers insight, it’s also very confusing because of the diverse cultural elements. The same can be said of many Greek-influenced cults in the near east, as well as Romanized cults as far west as Britain.

What do you think of these Romanized/ Hellenized cults? Are they informative, or are they a pretty unreliable way of interpreting local cultures? On one hand, contact with Greece and Rome seems to have the benefit of producing written sources, inscriptions, statues etc. that can be analyzed, yet it is inevitably through a syncretic cultural lense. How should a person go about looking at this information?

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Hello!

Hello everyone!
I am a Puerto Rican teen whom has decided to go back to the native ways and worship the Taíno (native Amerindian peoples of the Caribbean, predominantly Cuba, Puerto Rico,etc) Gods, whom the Taíno natives called Cemí/Zemí.
 
I take a traditional stance on viewing and worshipping the Gods, which also includes a large amount of ancestor veneration.

I have a small shrine, nothing fancy, where i perform daily prayers and offerings to my ancestors, the Gods, and the spirits of the earth.

I also perform a cleansing/starting the day on the right foot type of ritual which involves holding a vessel of water, pointing it to the direction of either North, South, East, or West, saying a prayer to the specific God of that direction whilst asking them to bless you with their specific trait, then pouring the water over yourself.

To provide insight,

God of North- Rahuno
Trait- Wisdom/Experience

God of South- Achiano
Trait- Open Mindness

God of East- Sobaiko
Trait- Illumination/Enlightenment

God of West- Koromo
Trait- Inner Vision

Speaking of the Gods, there are quite a few.

There are the major Gods that everyone knows, Ata Bey, Yucahú, Guabancex, Juracán, etc, and then there are the spirits of the earth and heavens, which include the spirits of our ancestors.

There are many websites explaining the Gods and some mythology in case you’d like to do further research on Them.

Anyway, i hope you guys enjoyed my introduction to my beliefs and background, and i hope to have a good time here.

May the Gods bless all your beautiful souls!

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