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Author Topic: Offerings  (Read 5588 times)

Scales

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Re: Offerings
« Reply #15 on: October 20, 2014, 02:22:06 pm »
Quote from: HarpingHawke;158858


 
A lot of the time I keep a fresh cup of water out each day, for one deity. He also gets basically whatever I have (I've offered chocolates, soda, all that irreverent sounding stuff we do sometimes, and also super fancy incense, teas, etc). He likes more robust drinks, be that alcohol (which I don't purchase and thus don't offer, but have been encouraged to) or hot chocolate. Something strong flavoured.

The other I don't exactly give offerings to (it's just semantics that I don't even want to bother thinking out right now, though), but I give her a cup of tea fairly often. She likes greens and rice or barley teas especially.

On occasion I offer either one candles, incense, etc. I also offer time.

BillyBitts

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Re: Offerings
« Reply #16 on: February 09, 2015, 03:14:26 pm »
Quote from: Cuthwin Crowe;158863
I do. I tend to think offering should be appropriate to the deity or spirit.

God of wine: libations of wine. Easy!

God of joy and light: flowers and crystals. Easy!

God of the woods, of nature red in tooth and claw? Meat and carved bones. Too easy!

On a more serious note, research your deity. If its an ancient one, see if you can research its past worship cutoms and use a traditional offering ( unless you worship Moloch or Andramelech, not enough babies to go around), if its one who has only spoken to you, meditate and contemplated that matter. Pray and ask what it wants.

And on a practical note, burned offerings? Outside, in a fire ring or bowl. Or you'll be meeting your god face to face a bit too soon, especially if you live in a dry, wooded area.
I guess you couldn't tell I was being facetious. My fault.

Quote from: Redfaery;158861
I would think that actually, there *are* rules. I wouldn't give Ganesha a steak, for instance. And also, it is indeed possible to sacrifice an animal humanely and ethically. For traditions such as Santeria, it is part of a long history of religious practice. So that "rule" should only be followed on a case-by-case basis. I would not, for instance, offer a blood sacrifice to a Shinto deity, since that would be like dumping a pile of turds on their plate.

Caffeinated Autumn

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Re: Offerings
« Reply #17 on: February 10, 2015, 04:03:05 am »
Quote from: Lune;158919
As you might have read from other posts there are indeed rules but they're different for every tradition. I can speak for my tradition but most of all I speak for me since I'm currently still a solitary practicioner of my faith.

I leave offerings for my deites when I worship them during the full moon rituals and the eight festivals of the year. There are a couple of special days unique to my path aside from these that require offerings too.

Usually the offerings consist of moon shaped cakes I made by hand and a chalice of grape juice as a substitute for wine since I don't drink. I eat these offerings because it is like sharing a meal together. Any other food offerings I don't eat, instead I return it to nature. For example breads and cakes I would feed to the birds if it's safe for them to eat. Liquids I would poor onto the earth in my garden. Flowers and plants I would add to the compost pile or tuck beneath the earth to feed the soil.

There is another offering I make to the spirits of nature and the hearth and home. It's a mixture of wine (grape juice), honey and milk. We call it nectar and this is something I would also poor back onto the earth after it has sat on my shrine for a bit.

Hopefully this is helpful ^.^

Blessed be.

Lune

 
This is basically the same thing I do when making offerings. I like the idea of sharing between me and the Gods and Goddesses because I feel I'm saying "Please come enjoy this food I've prepared!" Usually for food I try to make a symbol on it like a pentagram or symbol of the Sabbat I'm doing a ritual for.Then putting everything back into the earth makes it so that everyone has received their share.

Riverwolf

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Re: Offerings
« Reply #18 on: February 10, 2015, 03:03:50 pm »
Quote from: HarpingHawke;158858
Do you leave offerings to your gods? If so, what kinds?

If you leave food, do you eat it afterwards or are you really not supposed to?

Are there any rules to this? What about those of you who don't leave food and do other things as offerings? What applies to those?

Do your offerings ever tie into the work you do for your gods?

Feel free to add anything else you deem relevant.

Well, I certainly think there's rules to this, based on an experience I had.

A few years ago, I did a Midsummer Blot with some friends of mine. It was mostly improvised, and involved a Mead that my girlfriend had made. I poured some into the ground, and then sprinkled them with some, and offered some to drink. During the ritual, which was primarily offered to Balder, I ended up kneeling automatically, even though that's kind of a no-no in my research.

Later that day, the Mead spilled all over the floor.

So... perhaps the kneeling wasn't what to do. But another possibility: the "Mead" was a non-alcoholic type that can be made in an afternoon. Apparently, the Gods don't much care for that.

And then it doesn't help that the only actual alcoholic "Mead" that I can get a hold of easily is actually not Mead at all, but a white wine flavored with honey (and as a personal note, I don't drink alcohol normally except in these rituals, and even then only a small sip... and this not-Mead tastes like cleaner). Don't know if that would be good enough... I've not tried a blot since.

Mead is hard to get a hold of in the California, it would seem. Suppose I could make it, if I had the patience...

As far as other offerings go, one thing I've been considering as an offering to the local Elves is a simple bird-feeder. The ritual element would probably be as simple as a small mantra said as I refill it, but I think it would count. When it comes to food, I would only offer fresh food relevant to the God in question, and since meat offerings aren't possible without an animal sacrifice (which isn't possible for me since I'm not a farmer), I'd offer fruits or vegetables that grow in the region that the God originally comes from (so no corn to any of the Aesir, since corn isn't native to Europe).

Of course... the reason I keep saying "would" is because I haven't exactly codified a set of rituals to do, yet. Apparently, the ancient Germanic tribes didn't worship the Gods inside temples or their houses, because that was like "imprisoning" them. Hence they worshiped the Gods in Sacred Groves like the Celts. (Yes, the later Norse built temples; I'm talking about the Germanic tribes contemporary with Rome). My backyard isn't really adequate for worship, and the local Gods (that is, the Gods of a nearby ridge and the Goddess of our town-side marina) are so sickly that I doubt any offerings would be noticed.

Hard being a Pagan in an industrialized area...
« Last Edit: February 10, 2015, 03:04:39 pm by Riverwolf »
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HarpingHawke

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Re: Offerings
« Reply #19 on: February 10, 2015, 03:18:06 pm »
Quote from: Riverwolf;170810


Of course... the reason I keep saying "would" is because I haven't exactly codified a set of rituals to do, yet. Apparently, the ancient Germanic tribes didn't worship the Gods inside temples or their houses, because that was like "imprisoning" them. Hence they worshiped the Gods in Sacred Groves like the Celts. (Yes, the later Norse built temples; I'm talking about the Germanic tribes contemporary with Rome). My backyard isn't really adequate for worship, and the local Gods (that is, the Gods of a nearby ridge and the Goddess of our town-side marina) are so sickly that I doubt any offerings would be noticed.

 
Which Germanic tribes are you talking about? I'd love to learn more about this--do you perhaps have a source?

(Also, maybe you could give the local gods some small offerings anyway? They'd be certain to notice it over time, and they would likely very much appreciate it. That is, if you're up to it).
"There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self." - Hemingway

Riverwolf

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Re: Offerings
« Reply #20 on: February 10, 2015, 03:38:02 pm »
Quote from: HarpingHawke;170811
Which Germanic tribes are you talking about? I'd love to learn more about this--do you perhaps have a source?


To be fair, it's a third-hand source. I heard it in the documentary, "Germanic Tribes - Barbarians Against Rome", which cited Tacitus on the topic. I've admittedly not read Tacitus, but it does make sense to me, seeing that there was so much overlap between the Germanic and Celtic tribes.

Of course, it could also have been referring to the Germanic tribes geographically closer to Rome, so it very well may not apply to the Northern Tribes (including the Saxons, Angles, and so on).

Quote
(Also, maybe you could give the local gods some small offerings anyway? They'd be certain to notice it over time, and they would likely very much appreciate it. That is, if you're up to it).

 
Perhaps... a salmon offering to the Goddess might be appreciated if noticed, because the fish used to be so common that you could walk on them. (Figuratively speaking, of course. ^_^) Not sure about the ridge Gods, though... every time I go up there, I can kinda sense that they're rather... grouchy.
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Re: Offerings
« Reply #21 on: February 10, 2015, 03:45:21 pm »
Quote from: Riverwolf;170812

Perhaps... a salmon offering to the Goddess might be appreciated if noticed, because the fish used to be so common that you could walk on them. (Figuratively speaking, of course. ^_^) Not sure about the ridge Gods, though... every time I go up there, I can kinda sense that they're rather... grouchy.

 
Yeahup, some entities can be a bit grouchy! :) Whatever you're comfortable with.
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Juniperberry

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Re: Offerings
« Reply #22 on: February 10, 2015, 04:01:40 pm »
Quote from: Riverwolf;170812
To be fair, it's a third-hand source. I heard it in the documentary, "Germanic Tribes - Barbarians Against Rome", which cited Tacitus on the topic. I've admittedly not read Tacitus, but it does make sense to me, seeing that there was so much overlap between the Germanic and Celtic tribes.

Of course, it could also have been referring to the Germanic tribes geographically closer to Rome, so it very well may not apply to the Northern Tribes (including the Saxons, Angles, and so on).

.

 
It's one I reference often. Off the top of my head " It is not consistent with the Germans to confine their gods within temples or in the countenance of celestial beings, rather they worship in groves and by rivers and worship that which they see only in spiritual abstraction."

...or something. :)
 

It's in Tacitus' Germania.

It's generalized, and doesn't refer to any specific tribe.
The pace of progress in artificial intelligence (I’m not referring to narrow AI) is incredibly fast. [...] The risk of something seriously dangerous happening is in the five year timeframe. 10 years at most.--Elon Musk

I am in the camp that is concerned about super intelligence," [Bill] Gates wrote. "First the machines will do a lot of jobs for us and not be super intelligent. That should be positive if we manage it well. A few decades after that though the intelligence is strong enough to be a concern. I agree with Elon Musk and some others on this and don\'t understand why some people are not concerned."

Juniperberry

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Re: Offerings
« Reply #23 on: February 10, 2015, 04:09:24 pm »
Quote from: Riverwolf;170810
Well, I certainly think there's rules to this, based on an experience I had.

A few years ago, I did a Midsummer Blot with some friends of mine. It was mostly improvised, and involved a Mead that my girlfriend had made. I poured some into the ground, and then sprinkled them with some, and offered some to drink. During the ritual, which was primarily offered to Balder, I ended up kneeling automatically, even though that's kind of a no-no in my research.

Later that day, the Mead spilled all over the floor.

So... perhaps the kneeling wasn't what to do. But another possibility: the "Mead" was a non-alcoholic type that can be made in an afternoon. Apparently, the Gods don't much care for that.

And then it doesn't help that the only actual alcoholic "Mead" that I can get a hold of easily is actually not Mead at all, but a white wine flavored with honey (and as a personal note, I don't drink alcohol normally except in these rituals, and even then only a small sip... and this not-Mead tastes like cleaner). Don't know if that would be good enough... I've not tried a blot since.

Mead is hard to get a hold of in the California, it would seem. Suppose I could make it, if I had the patience...

As far as other offerings go, one thing I've been considering as an offering to the local Elves is a simple bird-feeder. The ritual element would probably be as simple as a small mantra said as I refill it, but I think it would count. When it comes to food, I would only offer fresh food relevant to the God in question, and since meat offerings aren't possible without an animal sacrifice (which isn't possible for me since I'm not a farmer), I'd offer fruits or vegetables that grow in the region that the God originally comes from (so no corn to any of the Aesir, since corn isn't native to Europe).

Of course... the reason I keep saying "would" is because I haven't exactly codified a set of rituals to do, yet. Apparently, the ancient Germanic tribes didn't worship the Gods inside temples or their houses, because that was like "imprisoning" them. Hence they worshiped the Gods in Sacred Groves like the Celts. (Yes, the later Norse built temples; I'm talking about the Germanic tribes contemporary with Rome). My backyard isn't really adequate for worship, and the local Gods (that is, the Gods of a nearby ridge and the Goddess of our town-side marina) are so sickly that I doubt any offerings would be noticed.

Hard being a Pagan in an industrialized area...

 
Not just the bolded portion, but a lot of your issues with offerings as a heathen are why I've been working on a post-Ragnarok worldview.

For various reason most heathens do seem to have this impression of strict traditionalism in the gods. A lot want to conform to  natively European, or  old-fashioned practices, as much as possible. But you're right; you don't live there, you're not a farmer, and you live in an Industrial Age.

There's not really a point to this post... Just thinking out loud. :)
The pace of progress in artificial intelligence (I’m not referring to narrow AI) is incredibly fast. [...] The risk of something seriously dangerous happening is in the five year timeframe. 10 years at most.--Elon Musk

I am in the camp that is concerned about super intelligence," [Bill] Gates wrote. "First the machines will do a lot of jobs for us and not be super intelligent. That should be positive if we manage it well. A few decades after that though the intelligence is strong enough to be a concern. I agree with Elon Musk and some others on this and don\'t understand why some people are not concerned."

Jainarayan

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Re: Offerings
« Reply #24 on: February 10, 2015, 04:25:25 pm »
Quote from: Riverwolf;170810
...I poured some into the ground, and then sprinkled them with some, and offered some to drink. During the ritual, which was primarily offered to Balder, I ended up kneeling automatically, even though that's kind of a no-no in my research. ...


I've wondered about the kneeling and posture while praying. Everything I've read about blóts and symbels is that they are done standing. I've never seen mention of kneeling. Diana Paxton's book Essential Ásatrú is in the setting of a private home symbel. The way she describes it is that everyone is standing. They sit while eating. At my own altar when I am done with prayers and offerings I get down on one knee. I make a fist and hold it over my chest (a clenched fist and your arm looks like a hammer). Even though I consider Thor a big brother and a buddy, he's still way greater and more powerful than I am, deserving of reverence and respect. But I think there's a lot of upg involved in these things.
śivāya vishnu rūpaya śivaḥ rūpaya vishnave
śivasya hridayam viṣṇur viṣṇoscha hridayam śivaḥ
Vishnu's appearance is Shiva; Shiva's appearance is Vishnu
Vishnu is the heart of Shiva; Shiva is the heart of Vishnu - Skandopanishad
 

Riverwolf

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Re: Offerings
« Reply #25 on: February 10, 2015, 06:23:05 pm »
Quote from: Juniperberry;170815
Not just the bolded portion, but a lot of your issues with offerings as a heathen are why I've been working on a post-Ragnarok worldview.

For various reason most heathens do seem to have this impression of strict traditionalism in the gods. A lot want to conform to  natively European, or  old-fashioned practices, as much as possible. But you're right; you don't live there, you're not a farmer, and you live in an Industrial Age.

There's not really a point to this post... Just thinking out loud. :)

 
It is a fair point to make, actually. I tend to think of time in terms of cycles, and that Voluspa's story is a metaphoric representation of this: dawn, day, dusk, night, dawn. (Almost had perfect alliteration there, English. :mad: ) So Ragnarok happens over and over again, and has happened in various parts of the world more than a few times even since the Viking Age; from the Sengoku Jidai in Japan, to the many Revolutions that rocked Europe up till the two World Wars (heck, the period between the American Revolution and World War II might be called "The European Age of Revolution").

On another forum, my religious title is "Old Way Made New", which refers to my work to apply the Old Way to the modern world, which necessitates differentiation from the past. The only real way to practice the Old Way in the... well, old way, would be to live as our ancestors did: farmers in wooded huts that were effectively oases in vast wilderness. I doubt most people who were born and raised in the modern way would have the physical capability to live such a hard life; after all, mortality rates were much higher back then. It was no Snow-White Disney-Pocahontas Ferngully "one-with-nature" utopia; it was hard. Others wishing to live like that are free to do so, but such a life would likely kill me due to my own physical frailty.

In any case, what's appropriate to offer becomes dependent on what's available at any given time, and the local laws. Utilizing bird feeders in a ritualized context have another added benefit that they won't make neighbors uncomfortable, and one of the big reasons I'm drawn to Heathenry in the first place isn't because I'm dissatisfied with contemporary culture; quite the contrary (...okay, I am, but that's beside the point). I'm drawn to it as a way to better connect with contemporary culture, because I've come to realize that the Old Way never really died; it just changed clothes.
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Juniperberry

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Re: Offerings
« Reply #26 on: February 10, 2015, 06:47:26 pm »
Quote from: Riverwolf;170830
It is a fair point to make, actually. I tend to think of time in terms of cycles


I don't disagree with you and I like the way you've broken up the day metaphorically. I do think a key philosophy in heathenry was the maintenance of balance, and for that reason the circular nature of cyclical time isn't my focal point but the space of harmony in the middle. I suppose in that way I don't see a post-Ragnarok worldview as existing on a curvature of the cycle, but redefining the enclosed space within it (the enclosed space being midgard).

Quote
On another forum, my religious title is "Old Way Made New", which refers to my work to apply the Old Way to the modern world, which necessitates differentiation from the past. The only real way to practice the Old Way in the... well, old way, would be to live as our ancestors did: farmers in wooded huts that were effectively oases in vast wilderness. I doubt most people who were born and raised in the modern way would have the physical capability to live such a hard life; after all, mortality rates were much higher back then. It was no Snow-White Disney-Pocahontas Ferngully "one-with-nature" utopia; it was hard. Others wishing to live like that are free to do so, but such a life would likely kill me due to my own physical frailty.


Definitely! A lot of modern people see urban spaces as the new, violent wilderness and nature as the calm retreat , but in the heathen past, for one, this was reversed.

Quote
In any case, what's appropriate to offer becomes dependent on what's available at any given time, and the local laws. Utilizing bird feeders in a ritualized context have another added benefit that they won't make neighbors uncomfortable, and one of the big reasons I'm drawn to Heathenry in the first place isn't because I'm dissatisfied with contemporary culture; quite the contrary (...okay, I am, but that's beside the point). I'm drawn to it as a way to better connect with contemporary culture, because I've come to realize that the Old Way never really died; it just changed clothes.

 
I think the idea of the bird feeder is ingenious! I might have to steal it.

Again, I don't disagree with you, because I don't think there's any 'truth' to disagree on. I just happen to see it less as changing clothes and more changing hands. (In that I'm worshipping post-Ragnarok gods Vidar, Baldr, Hoenir etc.) I'd really like to hear more on how you contemporize heathenry though for more inspiration.
The pace of progress in artificial intelligence (I’m not referring to narrow AI) is incredibly fast. [...] The risk of something seriously dangerous happening is in the five year timeframe. 10 years at most.--Elon Musk

I am in the camp that is concerned about super intelligence," [Bill] Gates wrote. "First the machines will do a lot of jobs for us and not be super intelligent. That should be positive if we manage it well. A few decades after that though the intelligence is strong enough to be a concern. I agree with Elon Musk and some others on this and don\'t understand why some people are not concerned."

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Re: Offerings
« Reply #27 on: February 12, 2015, 08:11:37 pm »
Quote from: HarpingHawke;158858
Do you leave offerings to your gods? If so, what kinds?

If you leave food, do you eat it afterwards or are you really not supposed to?

Are there any rules to this? What about those of you who don't leave food and do other things as offerings? What applies to those?

Do your offerings ever tie into the work you do for your gods?

Feel free to add anything else you deem relevant.


I give offerings to Bast most days. If I give food or drink then after it is offered I consume it. Most of the things I offer Her are sandalwood, catnip (for the health and happiness of my two cats along with a bit of fur from brushing them), lavender, milk, and certain stones.

Working with mainly Bast, I have a pretty good feeling on what to offer Her when I come across things. Also prayers daily and meditations on her. Strange thing about bird feeding but I have gotten into the habit of it for my cats and I have a feeling She gets a chuckle out of it. Also, when I lived out in the country, I would leave offerings away from the house to feed the animals in the woods. Just little things like that seem to get me closer to Her. ;)

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