collapse

* "Unable to verify referring url. Please go back and try again" Problem Logging In?

If you get an "Unable to verify referring url. Please go back and try again" error when you try to log in, you need to be sure you are accessing the board with a url that starts with "https://ecauldron.com".  If it starts with https://www.ecauldron.com" (or "http://www.ecauldron.com") you will get this error because "www.ecauldron.com" is not technically the same website as "ecauldron.com". Moving to the more secure "https" means it is more picky about such things.

Author Topic: Cultural filters  (Read 7094 times)

Redfaery

  • Grand Master Member
  • *******
  • Join Date: Dec 2013
  • Posts: 1345
  • Total likes: 40
    • View Profile
Cultural filters
« on: July 25, 2014, 01:59:52 pm »
OK....I'm not sure how to put this question, or if it will even make sense.

How much do you think the cultural contexts of your beliefs affect your own practices? Obviously, this is important for recons, but I'm also thinking about more eclectic types. Even British Traditional Wicca has elements that don't really work outside the "home area" without fiddling (like....try doing the Wheel of the Year in a tropical climate. Or...heavens forbid, the Southern Hemisphere!)
KARMA: You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

Sarah

  • Sr. Master Member
  • *******
  • Join Date: Apr 2013
  • Posts: 827
  • Total likes: 3
    • View Profile
Re: Cultural filters
« Reply #1 on: July 25, 2014, 02:51:43 pm »
Quote from: Redfaery;153888
OK....I'm not sure how to put this question, or if it will even make sense.

How much do you think the cultural contexts of your beliefs affect your own practices? Obviously, this is important for recons, but I'm also thinking about more eclectic types. Even British Traditional Wicca has elements that don't really work outside the "home area" without fiddling (like....try doing the Wheel of the Year in a tropical climate. Or...heavens forbid, the Southern Hemisphere!)

 
One of the reasons I chose/am building the path I am is because land cycles are really important to me. I move with the seasons, I am at my most creative at the end of spring and autumn, late summer is all types of harvest time for me and i get slow and silent in the wintertime. So acknowledging these points is part of accepting who i am and how important the land is to me/my sense of self.

From the outside it probably looks like I follow the wiccan wheel of year but that's more because it maps to the British agricultural/seasonal cycle than the other way round.

British and European folklore and folk magic are very much a part of my path because that's where I am, If i was somewhere else I would probably pull on the folklore and magic traditions from there.

(I am not suggesting that this is the "right" way to do it, it's just right for me)
Knowing when to use a shovel is what being a witch is all about. Nanny Ogg, Witches Abroad

Sage

  • Adept Member
  • ********
  • Join Date: Jul 2011
  • Posts: 2186
  • Total likes: 5
    • View Profile
    • http://sageandstarshine.wordpress.com
Re: Cultural filters
« Reply #2 on: July 25, 2014, 03:29:24 pm »
Quote from: Redfaery;153888
How much do you think the cultural contexts of your beliefs affect your own practices?

 
Very important, though sometimes which cultural context is "most" important changes depending on context. I'm part of the Brigidine devotional group Clann Bhride. The cultural context of Brighid as a Celtic goddess (and later as Catholic saint) is an important facet for me in understanding how others have understood Her throughout history.

However, I also believe firmly in continual revelation* and that Brighid has and does change, as all people change. Furthermore, how we relate to gods also change. I am not a member of any Celtic society today; the fact I have Scottish heritage means jack to me spiritually speaking considering I'm a product of white Americana. It's 2014 and I'm a modern USonian living in a predominantly conservative Christian part of the nation. How the ancient Celts understood Brighid means far less to me than my own modern understanding of Her.

It's like... yeah, I'm mildly interested in what others think of Friend A back in their college days, but Friend A isn't in college anymore and we're interacting in a completely different context, building a new relationship between the two of us. Relationships are in part formed of who we were before meeting a person of course, but I give more credence to what's going on now. Sometimes I find that delving into ancient Celtic practices and theology is helpful to understanding Brighid today. Sometimes I don't. Mostly, I go with my gut understanding and don't worry if it doesn't mesh up with anyone's cultural filter but my own. :)


*- I'm not sure if this is the right term, but I'm pretty tired right now and fighting a cold so it's all I can think of at the moment!
Maker, though the darkness comes upon me,
I shall embrace the light. I shall weather the storm.
I shall endure.
What you have created, no one can tear asunder.

-Canticle of Trials 1:10

Sage and Starshine (my spiritual blog): last updated 2/25.
Friday Otherfaith Blogging: last updated 2/27
Join the Emboatening Crew over on Kiva! Emboatening the boatless since Opet 2013.

Juni

  • Grand Master Member
  • *******
  • Join Date: Jun 2011
  • Posts: 1683
  • Total likes: 2
    • View Profile
    • http://thelittleseawitch.net
Re: Cultural filters
« Reply #3 on: July 25, 2014, 03:47:30 pm »
Quote from: Redfaery;153888
How much do you think the cultural contexts of your beliefs affect your own practices?

 
I'm reminded of a quote from David Foster Wallace:

'There are these two young fish swimming along, and they happen to meet an older fish swimming the other way, who nods at them and says, "Morning, boys, how's the water?" And the two young fish swim on for a bit, and then eventually one of them looks over at the other and goes, "What the hell is water?"'

I think that our cultural lenses greatly affect our practices and interpretations, and even moreso when we're saying 'what the hell is water?' When we can't identify how our culture has shaped our perspectives, we can't see how that warps what we're looking at, and we can't make the necessary adjustments to see the thing clearly.

That said, just because I know the culture I was raised in (that of secular New England) has shaped me doesn't necessarily help me to see what that really means. Though I've left CT, the area of NC I live in doesn't feel much different, and I've not traveled widely enough to really experience a different normal from my own. And when I do spot differences (like my experiences at the DMV) I don't tend to attribute them to culture, so much, as random variance. And that's possibly because the regional variations on US culture are more like dialects than different languages.

I'm having trouble staying on topic here, but I will say that if I was from a different culture, I would not be on the path I'm on now. What it would look like, I have no idea!
Join the Emboatening Crew over on Kiva! Emboatening the boatless since Opet 2013!

The Little Sea Witch - personal/catch-all blog
MistSeeking - religious blog

Chatelaine

  • Staff
  • *
  • Join Date: Jul 2011
  • Posts: 721
  • Country: gb
  • Total likes: 49
  • Metaphors be with you.
    • View Profile
    • Are We There Yet?
  • Religion: Eastern Orthodox Christian
  • Preferred Pronouns: she/her/hers
Re: Cultural filters
« Reply #4 on: July 25, 2014, 05:52:41 pm »
Quote from: Redfaery;153888
OK....I'm not sure how to put this question, or if it will even make sense.

How much do you think the cultural contexts of your beliefs affect your own practices? Obviously, this is important for recons, but I'm also thinking about more eclectic types. Even British Traditional Wicca has elements that don't really work outside the "home area" without fiddling (like....try doing the Wheel of the Year in a tropical climate. Or...heavens forbid, the Southern Hemisphere!)


I know what you mean. Being English, my pagan years were a breeze, as if everything was designed for my specific location. Then I was drawn into Orthodox Christianity, which is still considered something just for Greeks and Russians. However, it's just a matter of cultural perception by other people - the faith itself, as well as its practice, has very little that is not universally applicable, especially with 21st-century amenities available.

About the hardest thing is synchronising feast days between the liturgical and the secular calendar. Pascha is calculated on the Julian calendar, so, while it occasionally coincides with Western Easter, it usually falls anything between 1-5 weeks later (so most likely out of school break, and definitely long after all the specialised candy is gone!). Some jurisdictions even follow the Julian calendar wholesale, so they celebrate Christmas on 7th January (and have to fast throughout the generally accepted festive season). I can cope with Pascha, but the Christmas arrangement would probably have been a bit too much of a sacrifice! ;)
'You created us restless, O Lord, and we find no rest until we rest in You.'
~St Augustine~
Whole blog o' nonsense: Are We There Yet?

BrighidsAura

  • Journeyman
  • *****
  • Join Date: Jun 2014
  • Posts: 120
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
Re: Cultural filters
« Reply #5 on: July 25, 2014, 06:22:11 pm »
Quote from: Sage;153892
Very important, though sometimes which cultural context is "most" important changes depending on context. I'm part of the Brigidine devotional group Clann Bhride. The cultural context of Brighid as a Celtic goddess (and later as Catholic saint) is an important facet for me in understanding how others have understood Her throughout history.

However, I also believe firmly in continual revelation* and that Brighid has and does change, as all people change. Furthermore, how we relate to gods also change. I am not a member of any Celtic society today; the fact I have Scottish heritage means jack to me spiritually speaking considering I'm a product of white Americana. It's 2014 and I'm a modern USonian living in a predominantly conservative Christian part of the nation. How the ancient Celts understood Brighid means far less to me than my own modern understanding of Her.

It's like... yeah, I'm mildly interested in what others think of Friend A back in their college days, but Friend A isn't in college anymore and we're interacting in a completely different context, building a new relationship between the two of us. Relationships are in part formed of who we were before meeting a person of course, but I give more credence to what's going on now. Sometimes I find that delving into ancient Celtic practices and theology is helpful to understanding Brighid today. Sometimes I don't. Mostly, I go with my gut understanding and don't worry if it doesn't mesh up with anyone's cultural filter but my own. :)


*- I'm not sure if this is the right term, but I'm pretty tired right now and fighting a cold so it's all I can think of at the moment!

 
You made an interesting point here.

I also am of Scottish heritage--of many different clan connections--and thoughout my entire life, I almost based my whole existence and spirituality off of that. Then I went to Scotland....and realized how American I really am! Hahaha. And how unromantic it is! (I truly don't mean that in a bad way. I ADORED Scotland to the depths of my soul and I ache to go back daily. What I mean is that it wasn't like the dream world that I pictured in my head. It was...normal). The Scots were normal people. Even the cities (my family is from Glasgow but I spent most of my time in Aberdeen) were NORMAL! Sure, I saw something old and awesome here and there but I was in such shock from where I was that it didn't even really hit me that I was not even in America until a week or two into my trip. I just kept feeling I drove in my car to somewhere that I can go anytime I want. That's not at all how I thought I'd feel.

I realize now, after going to Scotland and being with my family there and friends there, that my spirituality is American with a Scottish mask on. I am drawn to anything Celtic, anything and everything of Scotland and Ireland (where the other half are from) but the things that I find beauty in are in Wisconsin. I am drawn to certain natural spaces in Wisconsin, I associate the seasons with certain smells because of Wisconsin, the energy that I connect with and interact with are in Wisconsin, I have the beliefs that I have because of my conditioning...in Wisconsin! My family are farmers in Wisconsin so the things that I link my spirituality with (like the smell of cinnemon in fall, the changing of the leaves, the FREEZING winters, the glittery snow, etc.) are from my experiences in rural Wisconsin. Very few--if any--of my cultural conditioning which inevitably shapes religious beliefs are Scottish! The only thing I can truly claim as "Scottish" is my name and my genetics.

And my inability to tan :p I kid, I kid.

BrighidsAura

  • Journeyman
  • *****
  • Join Date: Jun 2014
  • Posts: 120
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
Re: Cultural filters
« Reply #6 on: July 25, 2014, 06:24:12 pm »
Quote from: BrighidsAura;153905

 
Holy crap I said "Wisconsin" a lot in that post. bahaha. Drink every time BrighidsAura said Wisconsin! :p

random417

  • Journeyman
  • *****
  • Join Date: Jul 2014
  • Posts: 237
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
Re: Cultural filters
« Reply #7 on: July 25, 2014, 06:34:57 pm »
Quote from: BrighidsAura;153906
Holy crap I said "Wisconsin" a lot in that post. bahaha. Drink every time BrighidsAura said Wisconsin! :p
Best. Drinking. Game. Ever!
"Let it be that state of manyhood bound and loathing. So with thy all; thou hast no right but to do thy will. Do that and no other shall say nay. For pure will, unassuaged of purpose, delivered from the lust of result, is in every way perfect."

AL 1:42-44

BrighidsAura

  • Journeyman
  • *****
  • Join Date: Jun 2014
  • Posts: 120
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
Re: Cultural filters
« Reply #8 on: July 25, 2014, 06:46:10 pm »
Quote from: random417;153908
Best. Drinking. Game. Ever!

 
i knlow riiight!? soopoooo awesommm!

:sick:

random417

  • Journeyman
  • *****
  • Join Date: Jul 2014
  • Posts: 237
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
Re: Cultural filters
« Reply #9 on: July 25, 2014, 06:49:37 pm »
Quote from: Redfaery;153888
OK....I'm not sure how to put this question, or if it will even make sense.

How much do you think the cultural contexts of your beliefs affect your own practices? Obviously, this is important for recons, but I'm also thinking about more eclectic types. Even British Traditional Wicca has elements that don't really work outside the "home area" without fiddling (like....try doing the Wheel of the Year in a tropical climate. Or...heavens forbid, the Southern Hemisphere!)
On a more serious note. Both physical location AND culture play roles, but somewhat different ones.

Location helps determine things like if the traditional seasonal ceremonies line up with your seasons, and let's face it, if they don't, you're not really likely to find any reason to incorporate them into your practice. I'm sure there's other examples of that too.

Culture though, differences with culture can actually enrich your practice in a lot of ways. As a white lower middle class guy from Indiana, I actually found I took a lot from Voudoun traditions. It isn't my path, but things from it have incorporated themselves, to great benefit.

That said, your cultural upbringing can be part of why something feels "off" in a ritual sometimes
"Let it be that state of manyhood bound and loathing. So with thy all; thou hast no right but to do thy will. Do that and no other shall say nay. For pure will, unassuaged of purpose, delivered from the lust of result, is in every way perfect."

AL 1:42-44

BrighidsAura

  • Journeyman
  • *****
  • Join Date: Jun 2014
  • Posts: 120
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
Re: Cultural filters
« Reply #10 on: July 25, 2014, 06:57:20 pm »
Quote from: random417;153910

That said, your cultural upbringing can be part of why something feels "off" in a ritual sometimes

 
On another note: Do you guys think drawing religious/spiritual inspiration from where you live is limited based on what your ethnicity is? For example: Could I dive head first into Native American spirituality from the tribes ethnic to my area since some of my direct ancestors are whites who interacted firsthand with Native Americans while simultaneously taking over their country? I draw inspiration from the same energy sources that they did but my rituals are inspired more by pagan faiths from my ethnic homeland.

Just food for thought.

random417

  • Journeyman
  • *****
  • Join Date: Jul 2014
  • Posts: 237
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
Re: Cultural filters
« Reply #11 on: July 25, 2014, 07:22:39 pm »
Quote from: BrighidsAura;153912
On another note: Do you guys think drawing religious/spiritual inspiration from where you live is limited based on what your ethnicity is? For example: Could I dive head first into Native American spirituality from the tribes ethnic to my area since some of my direct ancestors are whites who interacted firsthand with Native Americans while simultaneously taking over their country? I draw inspiration from the same energy sources that they did but my rituals are inspired more by pagan faiths from my ethnic homeland.

Just food for thought.
Honestly, while this is really only theory for me, I'd say it depends on the spirits and tradition in question. If there's an active "native" population of practitioners, how do they view it? How do the spirits you'll be working with view it? I don't know enough about Native American spirituality to even begin to make a guess at your example.
"Let it be that state of manyhood bound and loathing. So with thy all; thou hast no right but to do thy will. Do that and no other shall say nay. For pure will, unassuaged of purpose, delivered from the lust of result, is in every way perfect."

AL 1:42-44

Altair

  • Adept Member
  • ********
  • Join Date: Jul 2011
  • Location: New York, New York
  • *
  • *
  • *
  • Posts: 3029
  • Country: us
  • Total likes: 401
  • Fly high and make the world follow
    • View Profile
    • Songs of the Metamythos
  • Religion: tree-hugging pagan
  • Preferred Pronouns: he/him/his
Re: Cultural filters
« Reply #12 on: July 25, 2014, 08:25:25 pm »
Quote from: BrighidsAura;153905

I also am of Scottish heritage--of many different clan connections--and thoughout my entire life, I almost based my whole existence and spirituality off of that. Then I went to Scotland....and realized how American I really am!


The same thing happened to me as an African American when I went to Africa. Granted, I've never based my spirituality on African religions, and I was in east Africa when my ancestors are almost certainly from the west...but yeah. I went harboring no illusions about any latent African-ness on my part, and even so, I was struck by just how downright American I am and all African Americans are.

To return to the OP's question: My path is deliberately as broad and inclusive as possible, even applicable in the southern hemisphere. But while it may not be bound to a location (besides this planet), it is definitely steeped in a Western cultural view.
The first song sets the wheel in motion / The second is a song of love / The third song tells of Her devotion / The fourth cries joy from the sky above
The fifth song binds our fate to silence / and bids us live each moment well / The sixth unleashes rage and violence / The seventh song has truth to tell
The last song echoes through the ages / to ask its question all night long / And close the circle on these pages / These, the metamythos songs

BrighidsAura

  • Journeyman
  • *****
  • Join Date: Jun 2014
  • Posts: 120
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
Re: Cultural filters
« Reply #13 on: July 25, 2014, 10:51:06 pm »
Quote from: Altair;153930
The same thing happened to me as an African American when I went to Africa. Granted, I've never based my spirituality on African religions, and I was in east Africa when my ancestors are almost certainly from the west...but yeah. I went harboring no illusions about any latent African-ness on my part, and even so, I was struck by just how downright American I am and all African Americans are.

To return to the OP's question: My path is deliberately as broad and inclusive as possible, even applicable in the southern hemisphere. But while it may not be bound to a location (besides this planet), it is definitely steeped in a Western cultural view.


Have you guys ever seen Russell Peters' stand up comedy tour called Red, White and Brown? He does a hilarious sketch about going to India. He's Indian-canadian and went there with the thought that he'd be the most "Indian" guy in India. Very relatable and very funny. I'll see if I can find it.

Redfaery

  • Grand Master Member
  • *******
  • Join Date: Dec 2013
  • Posts: 1345
  • Total likes: 40
    • View Profile
Re: Cultural filters
« Reply #14 on: July 26, 2014, 02:23:52 am »
Quote from: BrighidsAura;153912
On another note: Do you guys think drawing religious/spiritual inspiration from where you live is limited based on what your ethnicity is? For example: Could I dive head first into Native American spirituality from the tribes ethnic to my area since some of my direct ancestors are whites who interacted firsthand with Native Americans while simultaneously taking over their country? I draw inspiration from the same energy sources that they did but my rituals are inspired more by pagan faiths from my ethnic homeland.

Just food for thought.


I personally don't think the descendants of a conquering people should touch the religious and spiritual traditions of those they subjugated with a ten-foot pole. It's the reason I will never, never, ever explore hoodoo, voodoo, or any African Diaspora religion. I owe too much of my current privilege to my ancestors' systematic oppression of People of Color.
KARMA: You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

Tags:
 

Related Topics

  Subject / Started by Replies Last post
116 Replies
20342 Views
Last post October 25, 2016, 05:18:52 pm
by Yei
11 Replies
3451 Views
Last post February 21, 2016, 04:22:52 pm
by the_raven
37 Replies
9432 Views
Last post February 05, 2012, 03:38:17 pm
by Micheál
178 Replies
20919 Views
Last post July 11, 2016, 03:27:29 pm
by Merlick
32 Replies
4767 Views
Last post June 11, 2017, 06:25:10 pm
by Yei

* Who's Online

  • Dot Guests: 56
  • Dot Hidden: 0
  • Dot Users: 0

There aren't any users online.

* Please Donate!

The Cauldron's server is expensive and requires monthly payments. Please become a Bronze, Silver or Gold Donor if you can. Donations are needed every month. Without member support, we can't afford the server.

* Shop & Support TC

The links below are affiliate links. When you click on one of these links you will go to the listed shopping site with The Cauldron's affiliate code. Any purchases you make during your visit will earn TC a tiny percentage of your purchase price at no extra cost to you.

* In Memoriam

Chavi (2006)
Elspeth (2010)
Marilyn (2013)

* Cauldron Staff

Host:
Sunflower

Message Board Staff
Board Coordinator:
Darkhawk

Assistant Board Coordinator:
Aster Breo

Senior Staff:
Aisling, Jenett, Sefiru

Staff:
Allaya, Chatelaine, EclecticWheel, HarpingHawke, Kylara, PerditaPickle, rocquelaire

Discord Chat Staff
Chat Coordinator:
Morag

Cauldron Council:
Bob, Catja, Emma-Eldritch, Fausta, Jubes, Kelly, LyricFox, Phouka, Sperran, Star, Steve, Tana

Site Administrator:
Randall