Pagan Culture (Pagan Culture)

selfactivated
#1
Since there is no NON-Christian section Im putting this here. Its not really a faith discussion but more of a belief discussion.

Paganism includes MANY Belief systems.

http://www.religioustolerance.org/paganism.htm

What is a "Pagan?"

Everybody has their favorite definition of the word "Pagan." Most people are convinced that their meaning is the correct one. But no consensus exists, even within a single faith tradition or religion as to what a pagan is.
Origin of the term:

There is general agreement that the word "Pagan" comes from the Latin word "paganus." Unfortunately, there is no consensus on the precise meaning of the word in the fifth century CE and before. There are three main interpretations. 16 None has won general acceptance:
Most modern Pagan sources interpret the word to have meant "rustic," "hick," or "country bumpkin" -- a pejorative term. The implication was that Christians used the term to ridicule country folk who tenaciously held on to what the Christians considered old-fashioned, outmoded Pagan beliefs. Those in the country were much slower in adopting the new religion of Christianity than were the city folks. They still followed the Greek state religion, Roman state religion, Mithraism, various mystery religions, etc., long after those in urban areas had converted. Some believe that in the early Roman Empire, "paganus" came to mean "civilian" as opposed to "military." Christians often called themselves "miles Christi" (Soldiers of Christ). The non-Christians became "pagani" -- non-soldiers or civilians. No denigration would be implied. C. Mohrmann suggests that the general meaning was any "outsider," -- a neutral term -- and that the other meanings, "civilian" and "hick," were merely specialized uses of the term. 17
By the third century CE, its meaning evolved to include all non-Christians. Eventually, it became an evil term that implied the possibility of Satan worship. The latter two meanings are still in widespread use today.
There is no generally accepted, single, current definition for the word "Pagan." The word is among the terms that the newsgroup alt.usage.english, calls "skunk words." They have varied meanings to different people. The field of religion is rife with such words. consider: Christian , cult , hell, heaven , occult , Paganism , pluralism , salvation , Witch, Witchcraft , Unitarian Universalist , Voodoo , etc. Each has so many meanings that they often cause misunderstandings wherever they are used. Unfortunately, most people do not know this, and naturally assume that the meaning that they have been taught is universally accepted. A reader must often look at the context in which the word is used in order to guess at the intent of the writer.
We recognize that many Wiccans, Neopagans, and others regularly use the terms "Pagan" and "Paganism" to describe themselves. Everyone should be free to continue whatever definitions that they wish. However, the possibility of major confusion exists -- particularly if one is talking to a general audience. When addressing non-Wiccans or non-Neopagans, it is important that the term:
Be carefully defined in advance, or that Its meaning is clearly understandable from the text's context.
Otherwise, the speaker or writer will be referring to one group of people, while the listeners or readers will assume that other groups are being referred to.
 
selfactivated
#2
This site goes on to give seven definitions of Paganism

I hope this clears up some questions. Ithought it would be better to put all this info in one spot rather than bits all over the board.


Seven definitions of "Pagan:"

First meaning: Pagans consist of Wiccans and other Neopagans:

We recommend that this should be the primary definition of "Pagan," for the simple reason that many Wiccans and other Neopagans embrace the term for themselves. "Paganism" in this sense refers to a range of spiritual paths which are Earth centered -- involving their members living in harmony with the Earth and observing its cycles. These are often Neopagan religions based on the deities, symbols, practices, seasonal days of celebration and other surviving components of ancient religions, which had been long suppressed. For example: The Druidic religion is based on the faith and practices of the ancient Celtic professional class; Followers of Asatru adhere to the ancient, pre-Christian Norse religion; Wiccans trace their roots back to the pre-Celtic era in Europe. Other Neo-pagans follow ancient Roman, Greek, Egyptian and other traditions.
Some typical quotations which demonstrate this meaning of "Pagan" are:
"Witchcraft, or Wicca, is considered part of the occult, but has little relationship to Satanism. Wicca is pagan (pre-Christian, as opposed to anti-Christian) and is currently gaining popularity." 1 "Witches do not worship the devil...Witches are more interested in magical arts and the divinity of nature...Wiccans are considered pagans because they worship several nature gods instead of a single god." 2 "The World Christian Encyclopedia estimates 6 million Americans profess to be witches and engage in practices like these. They are a sub-group of over 10 million persons the encyclopedia says call themselves pagans, who practice "primitive" religions such as Druidism, Odin worship and Native American shamanism." 3
In this sense, "Pagan" refers to a group of religious traditions, and should be capitalized, as Christianity, Islam and Judaism are.
Second meaning: Pagans are people to hate:

Religious and social conservatives sometimes use "Pagan" as a general purpose "snarl" word to refer to cultures or religions that are very different from the speaker's. There is no general consensus as to meaning. It can be seen directed at any religious or cultural group that the speaker hates. Some examples: Dr. John Patrick, professor at the University of Ottawa, Canada was discussing at a conference the number of abortions performed worldwide. He said: "Gods and goddesses are beginning to re-inhabit the Western world. Infant sacrifice -Ė there are 52 million a year. It is paganism." 4 Dr. Richard Swenson, director of the Future Health Study Center. said at the same conference: "We went into post-Christian and neopaganism very quickly...We want the culture to change, we want some spiritual sanity, but we need to understand that this is a pluralistic and even neopaganist society." 4 Jerry Falwell appeared as a guest on Pat Robertson's "700 Club" program on 2001-SEP-13. He said that God became sufficiently angry at America that he engineered the terrorist attack on New York City and Washington-- presumably to send Americans a message. He said: "I really believe that the Pagans , and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians ...all of them who have tried to secularize America - I point the finger in their face and say 'you helped this happen.' " Pat Robertson responded: "Well, I totally concur..." 15 [We have asked Falwell's office via repeated Emails to tell us exactly to whom he was referring with the word "Pagans." They declined to respond.] More details .
Third meaning: Pagans are ancient polytheists:

The term "Pagan" is sometimes used to refer to ancient polytheistic religions. The Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary defines "pagan" as: "belonging to a religion which worships many gods, especially one which existed before the main world religions." 18
The Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament) contains many references to the societies surrounding the Israelites -- Babylonians, Canaanites, Philistines, etc. These are commonly referred to as Pagans:
There are allegations that these societies engaged in human sacrifices: II Kings 3:26-27: "...the king of Moab...took his eldest son that should have reigned in his stead, and offered him for a burnt offering upon the wall." Psalms 106:37-38: "Yea, they sacrificed their sons and their daughters unto devils, And shed innocent blood, even the blood of their sons and of their daughters, whom they sacrificed unto the idols of Canaan: and the land was polluted with blood." Their altars were often referred to as "high places:" II Kings 16:4: "And he sacrificed and burnt incense in the high places, and on the hills, and under every green tree." Surrounding tribes were viewed as committing idolatry by worshiping golden images of animals: II Kings 17:16: "And they left all the commandments of the LORD their God, and made them molten images, even two calves, and made a grove, and worshipped all the host of heaven, and served Baal."

Some current examples of this usage are:
Referring to sun wheels and obelisks: "...These symbols of pagan sun worship were associated with Baal worship, or Baalim, which is strongly condemned in scripture. So why are they so prevalent in the Roman Catholic Church, if they are associated with paganism and apostasy?" An anti-Catholic essay on a conservative Protestant Christian web site. 5 Ancient faiths of ancient Celtic, Egypt, Greece, Norse, Rome, and other cultures are frequently referred to as Pagan religions. Even though many of these religions had strict social and sexual behavioral codes, their followers are often portrayed as hedonist and immoral: 1 Peter 4:3: "For the time past of our life may suffice us to have wrought the will of the Gentiles, when we walked in lasciviousness, lusts, excess of wine, revellings, banquetings, and abominable idolatries."
Fourth meaning: Pagans follow Aboriginal religions:

Paganism is occasionally used to refer to animistic, spirits-and-essences filled belief systems. These are based upon direct perception of the forces of nature and usually involves the use of idols, talismans and taboos in order to convey respect for these forces and beings. Many native, aboriginal religions fit this definition.
Fifth meaning: Pagans are followers of non-Abrahamic religions:

A rare use of "Pagan" is to describe a person who does not follow an main Abrahamic religion . That is, their faith does not recognize Abraham as a patriarch. The individual is neither Christian , Muslim , Baha'i nor Jew . This includes Agnostics, Atheists, Buddhists, Hindus, Humanists, Taoists, etc. About 45% of the people of the world are Pagans, by this definition.
Sixth meaning: Pagans don't belong to any of the main religions of the world:

The Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary gives an alternative definition of the word "pagan" as: "relating to religious beliefs that do not belong to any of the main religions of the world" 18 This definition is rather vague, because it does not describe how a "main religion of the world" is defined. If it is any religion with more than, say, 1% of the world's population (i.e. 60 million members, then: Aboriginal religions, Atheism, Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, Taoism would be non-pagan, whereas Judaism, Sikhism, Confucianism, the Baha'i World Faith, Wicca, Zoroastrianism etc. would be pagan. I doubt that many members of the latter religions would be happy with their classification.
Seventh meaning: Pagans are Atheists, Agnostics, Humanists, etc:

The term "Pagan" was widely used by Atheists, Agnostics, Humanists, etc. to refer to themselves. The word was also used by others to describe these groups. The usage dropped after the rise of Neopaganism in the middle of the 20th century, and is rarely seen today.





 
selfactivated
#3
Canadian stats on non christian growth. QUITE interesting


http://www.religioustolerance.org/can_rel2.htm

NON-CHRISTIAN RELIGIOUS DATA
FROM THE CANADIAN 2001 CENSUS

Overview:

Statistics Canada reported the following data on individual faith groups in their 1991 and 2001 census. Membership include adults and children, and is self-reported. There are major problems with this method of counting:
Some individuals identify themselves with a particular religion, even though they have never been to a religious service in years. Some are reluctant to reveal their religious affiliation to a census taker or pollster who might be a neighbor. Some religious groups are widely hated by some Canadians. Examples include Wicca , other Neopagan faiths , Satanism , Atheism , Agnosticism and Humanism . According to Statistics Canada anyone who says they are of a certain faith is counted as being from that faith. But many people use other definitions. Many conservative Protestants, for example, do not regard Jehovah's Witnesses , Mormons , Spiritualists, etc. as Christian.
Some major non-Christian shifts over the decade:
Canada is becoming increasingly secular, as more people no longer associate with any organized religion. Wiccans and other Neopagans had the highest percentage growth rate, at over 280%. Native Canadian Spirituality is recovering from centuries of oppression, with a growth rate of about 175%. The growth of many non-Christian religions is influenced by immigration. "NOTAs" (None Of The Above) -- persons with no religious affiliation -- had the greatest numerical growth; they increased by 1,463,080 individuals.
In addition:
Christianity remains the largest religious group. Christianity in Canada is growing slowly in total membership, by about 1.5% over the decade. Within Christianity, the conservative Protestant groups have the greatest growth. However, Christians are declining as a percentage of the population.
We have highlighted in bold those groups which are growing faster than the total population.
Total numbers and growth between 1991 and 2001:

In Canada:
Total 1991 total 2001 total
Percentage Growth


Total Canadian population 26,994,040 29,639,035
+ 09.8%


Christian 22,503,360 (83.3%) 22,851,825 (77.1%) + 01.5
Non-Christian 1,093,680 (4.1%) 1,887,115 (6.4%) +72.5
No religious affiliation 3,397,000 (12.6%) 4,900,095 (16.5%) +44.2

Other than Christian religions :

Group Membership, 1991 Membership, 2001 Percentage Growth
Large religious groups (over 100K)

Muslim 253,265 579,645 +128.9%
Jewish 318,185 329,990 + 03.7
Buddhist 1 163,415 300,345 + 83.8
Hindu 157,010 297,200 + 89.3
Sikh 147,440 278,415 + 88.8

Eastern Religions:
Baha'i 14,730 18,020 + 22.3
Jains 1,410 2,455 + 74.1
Shinto 445 545 + 22.5
Taoist 1,725 3,440 + 99.4
Zoroastrian 3,185 4,955 + 55.6

Eastern religions,
n.i.e. 2 4,825 8,125 + 68.4


Small religious groups (under 100k)
Aboriginal spirituality 10,840 29,825 +175.1
Pagan 5,530 21,080 +281.2
Unity - New Thought - Pantheist 4,610 4,000 - 13.2
New Age 3 1,200 1,530 + 27.5
Scientology 1,215 1,525 + 25.5
Gnostic 765 1,160 + 51.6
Rastafarian 460 1,135 +146.7
Satanist 340 850 +150.0
Unitarian 4 16,535 17,480 + 05.7
Other non-Christian religions,
n.i.e. 3,090 2,870 - 07.1
Persons who are affiliated with a religious group (4,900,095 in total):

Group Membership, 1991 Membership,
2001 Percentage Growth
Agnostic 21,970 17,815 - 18.9%
Atheist 5 13,515 18,605 + 37.7
Humanist 1,245 2,105 + 69.1
No religious affiliation 3,333,245 4,796,325 + 43.9
Other, n.i.e. 27,025 65,245 + 141.4
It seems curious that Atheists and Humanists show such a rapid percentage increase, yet Agnostics show a decline. Perhaps we are seeing an increase in polarization.
Notes:
  1. Statistics Canada recognizes Jainism, Shinto, Taoism, etc. as "Eastern Religions." But other religions, such as Buddhism, Hinduism, Sikhism, etc., which are found throughout the same areas of the world, are not listed as "Eastern." We are at a loss to understand this.
  2. "n.i.e." means "not included elsewhere."
  3. Statistics Canada quoted less than two thousand Canadians who consider New Age to be their religion. There are probably hundreds of thousands who graft New Age beliefs and practices onto another religion who are not counted here.
  4. For no obvious reason, Statistics Canada classified the Unitarian faith as Christian . A survey of almost 10,000 Unitarian Universalists in the U.S. found that over 46% were Humanists, and fewer than 10% identified themselves as Christian. So we have replicated there data here.
  5. Most dictionaries define an Atheist as a person as a person who actively rejects the existence of a God or Goddess or pantheon of deities. Some Atheists define Atheism as a lack of belief in any supreme deity or deities.
References:

"Religion (95A), Age Groups (7A) and Sex (3) for Population, for Canada, Provinces, Territories, Census Metropolitan Areas 1 and Census Agglomerations, 1991 and 2001 Censuses - 20% Sample Data," Statistics Canada, at: http://www12.statcan.ca/ This list also gives membership breakdowns by age groups. This appears to be no longer a valid URL. A chart remains online at the Stats Can web site at: http://www12.statcan.ca/
Copyright information

Census data from "Statistics Canada...is used with the permission of Statistics Canada. Users are forbidden to copy the data and redisseminate them, in an original or modified form, for commercial purposes, without the expressed permission of Statistics Canada. Information on the availability of the wide range of data from Statistics Canada can be obtained from Statistics Canada's Regional Offices, its World Wide Web site at http://www.statcan.ca , and its toll-free access number 1-800-263-1136."

Last edited by selfactivated; Jan 25th, 2007 at 10:29 PM..
 
Sparrow
#4
Glad you started this subject. I hope others join in because I find it very interesting and would love to read more. I would like to hear more about so called pagan feasts and symbols that the RC Church claims as theirs.
 
selfactivated
#5
Well Ive tons of information to share and to be honest I'll be learning too because this is the first Wheel Ive come out of solitary to join in with others. Ive preformed Yule ceramony and it was amazing.

Ever been in a prayer circle? A really good one where everyone is really incinc with everyone else? You feel the tingle in your body and the lump in your throat, tears come as your heart pounds knowing your prayers ARE being heard..........THATS magic! I try to feel that at LEAST once a day. Pure Magic.
 
MikeyDB
#6
Hi ya Self...

All praying is circular....
 
selfactivated
#7
Uh huh and therefore perfect and complete.
 
RomSpaceKnight
#8
Paganism embraces Wiccan, New Age, Astaru, Druidism and many other spiritual paths. Variations occur in deities, symbols, and terminology. Most are earth centered with a respect for nature. Pagans embrace a return to earlier times when perhaps the pressures of modern civilization did not exist. Keep in mind that pressures from ancient times did exist (starvation, plague, war). Maybe not so different pressures. Family and kin are very important. In aims and golas paganism does not deviate much from the aims and goals of christianity. Live a good life and do no harm. Respect the earth and honour your ancestors. Wiccan holidays are fairly representative of pagan holidays. Astaru follows old Norse traditions, and as such may have a slightly different cant on holidays. Wiccan holidays are closely related to the old Celtic celebrations. Most pagan religions or spiritual paths relate to the equinoxs, solstices and days which fall halfway between them. They roughly correspond to agricultural schedules of northern europe such as planting, and harvest.

http://paganwiccan.about.com/library...03holidays.htm

The Pagan Roots of Modern Holidays

Many Pagan traditions are still seen today.

Many of the holidays we celebrate today are considered Christian, but the origins of many modern-day holidays are older than Christianity.
Easter
The Christian holiday of Easter commemorates the crucifixion of Christ, and his rise from the dead into heaven. Then where do all the symbolism of bunnies, and eggs come from? It's more than coincedence that the early Pagans had a holiday to mark the Spring Equinox, called Ostara, usually celebrated around March 21st. With the return of spring, came the birthing of the farm animals for the year. Which is why we see bunnies, chicks, eggs and little lambs as symbols for this holiday. Part of the Ostara mythology involved the return of various deities from the underworld (symbolic of the end of winter). So it's not surprising that this holiday got enmeshed with the Christian story of the ressurection of Christ.
Christmas
Even non-Pagans use the term "Yule" around the Christmas holidays. Yule is celebrated on the Winter Solstice (December 22nd), on the shortest day of the year. Since the days get longer from this point in the year, Yule is a celebration of the returning sun and the rebirth of the God who died at Hallowe'en. As with Easter, the Christian story of the birth of Jesus fits nicely with the Pagan mythology of a God reborn. Traditions such as wreaths and Yule logs are remnants of the original beliefs. Gifts were exchanged at Yule long before the Wise Men offered their gifts to the baby Jesus.
Groundhog Day
Well, it's not specifically Christian or celebrated as intensely as the two holidays just mentioned, Groundhog Day is still part of the modern-day year. Candlemas (or Imbolc) is celebrated on February 2nd. Because spring is just starting to show itself at this time of year, there were various superstitions about predicting the weather, and how long it would be until the end of winter. The original idea was to watch for a hedgehog, but as people immigrated to North America, the tradition changed to a ground hog to suit local wildlife.
Hallowe'en
Ok, everyone knows that Hallowe'en is a Pagan holiday, but there are many misconceptions surrounding what the holiday really means. Pagans call the day Samhain (SOW-en or sow-EEN). The old God dies on this day, and the Goddess mourns him until his rebirth at Yule. We use this day to honour and remember our loved ones who have passed on. In an effort to diffuse the interest in this heathen holiday, the Church created All Saint's Day (November 1) as a holy day to recognize all the Catholic saints. But it wasn't a powerful enough idea to wipe out the traditional Hallowe'en celebrattions. Ironically, many Christians do not approve of the celebration of Hallowe'en because of its Pagan origins, not realizing that almost all of the holidays they observe had Pagan beginnings.
Why are major Christian holidays layered on older Pagan festivals? The central reason is that as Christianity was struggling for acceptance in Europe, the country-folk would not give up their age-old traditions. By blending the old with the new, it was easier for the Church to convert the locals.

http://paganwiccan.about.com/library.../blsabbats.htm

Sabbat Basics

What are the Wiccan holidays and what do they mean

The Wiccan calendar is often referred to as the "Wheel of the Year", emphasizing the cyclical nature of the world around us. Each holiday has a wealth of history and tradition surrounding it, but this page should explain the basics of each Sabbat and how we celebrate.
Yule
Approx. Dec 21
Winter Solstice, Saturnalia, Alban Arthan
The holiday of Yule was celebrated long before Christians adopted the date. Many of the Christmas traditions we see today stem from old Pagan customs. As the solstice, it is the longest night of the year. From this day forward, light begins to return and we celebrate the rebirth of the Sun God.
Traditions: lighting the Yule log, wreath making, gift giving
Correspondences: pine, holly, myrrh, cinnamon,
Imbolc
Feb 2
Candlemas, Imbolg, Brigid's Day
Imbolc is a day to celebrate the first glimpses of Spring, and it is also dedicated to the Celtic Goddess Brigid. Non-Pagans celebrate today as Groundhog Day. Make new starts in life, as you give your home a thorough cleaning.
Traditions: Burning fires and candles, cleaning, making a bed for Brigid
Correspondences: carnation, rosemary, chamomile, milk
Ostara
Approx. March 21
Spring Equinox, Lady Day
This is another holiday that has been overlaid with Christian meanings (Easter). Eggs and bunnies are typical symbols, representing new birth and new life. Plant the seeds of long-term goals.
Traditions: Colouring eggs, decorating with flowers
Correspondences: jasmine, daffodil, lotus, new spring flowers
Beltane
May 1
May Day, Walpurgis Night
The God born at Yule is now a man, and the sacred marriage between God and Goddess is consumated. Beltane is a celebration of fertility, growth, love and passion. However you celebrate Beltane, do it with joy and happiness.
Traditions: Dancing around the May Pole, lighting bonfires
Correspondences: Rose, lilac, vanilla
Midsummer
Approx. June 21
Litha, Summer Solstice, Whitsun
Midsummer is the longest day of the year, and the strength of the Sun God begins to wane. The Goddess has left her Maiden form of Imbolc and is now in her Mother aspect. Refill your herb collection for the coming year.
Traditions: Fairy magick, collecting herbs
Correspondences: Orange, lemon, honeysuckle, vervain
Lammas
August 1
Lughnasadh,
As the first of the three harvest festivals, much of the symbolism for Lammas revolves around grains and bread. Sacrifices were common, though mostly symbolic, in order to ensure the continued success of the harvest.
Traditions: Bread baking, making corn dollies
Correspondences: corn, sandalwood, heather
Mabon
Approx. Sept 21
Autumn Equinox, Cornucopia
Day and night are equal again, and the weather grows colder as winter approaches. This is the second harvest festival. Rituals of thanks at this time have brought about the modern holidays of Thanksgiving. Take some time to think about what you are thankful for.
Traditions: Making and drinking of wine, share with the less fortunate
Correspondences: grapes, blackberries, cedar, patchouli

Samhain
Oct 31
Hallowe'en, All Hallows
Samhain (SOW-en) is the one Sabbat that is also widely celebrated amongst non-Pagans. The God has died, and the Goddess mourns him until his rebirth at Yule. It's the last harvest festival, and the end of the Wiccan year.
Traditions: Divination, honouring the dead, carving Jack o' Lanterns
Correspondences: pumpkins, apples, sage, mugwort
 
selfactivated
#9
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3pTUvB9uExI

This is called Pagan Norse. Its quite artistically done and the music is......well moving, earthy, shamanistic........amazing. It runs a bit fast for my tired eyes so you may have to run it twice to catch all the words.
 
Vereya
#10
You started a great thread, Self-Activated!
And thank you for the video - it was a treat watching it. The branch of Paganism that I belong to is Slavonic Paganism, and it is very close to Norse Paganism. We share a lot of symbols, and our Gods are very much alike in their functions, so it was really great to see all those symbols shown in the video. Nowadays in Russia most of Pagan symbols are treated like some kind of fascist signs, mainly because Hitler had used Svastika (or Kolovrat, as it is called in my religion) as his emblem. So a lot of people don't care to know that the Kolovrat had existed thousands of years before Hitler, and to know what it signifies, so they just hate it.
And we also have some problems with terms. The name of our Religion, that was used to denote it before Christianity came, is know used by the Russian Orthodox Church to name itself. So even the Name was taken away from us, and its meaning was changed.
And since this thread is devoted to Pagan Culture, I would like to post some of our rules that we follow. I posted them already in some other thread, but here they are once again^

1. Honor Rod the Almighty (the God who was the first to exist. The Great Spirit who gave birth to Lada - the Goddess of Love, and who created the rest of the Universe together with Her) and all the Pagan Gods.

2. Live a free life, you are the likeness of your Gods.

3.Remember your ancestors, who have preserved our culture.

4.Be a Warrior and do not kill without necessity.

5.Respect and obey your Parents.

6.Take full responsibility for what you do.

7.Treat Old people and children with understanding.

8.Donít lie to, donít humiliate and donít offend those of your Religion.

9.Remember the Law of hospitality and donít break it without necessity.

10.Love, understand and respect your Wife, Husband and children.

11.Live in harmony with Nature, remember, that it is alive.

12.Live a worthy Life and leave it with dignity.
 
look3467
#11
Interesting! I'll be reading. No comments.

Peace>>>AJ
 
selfactivated
#12
Quote: Originally Posted by Vereya View Post

You started a great thread, Self-Activated!
And thank you for the video - it was a treat watching it. The branch of Paganism that I belong to is Slavonic Paganism, and it is very close to Norse Paganism. We share a lot of symbols, and our Gods are very much alike in their functions, so it was really great to see all those symbols shown in the video. Nowadays in Russia most of Pagan symbols are treated like some kind of fascist signs, mainly because Hitler had used Svastika (or Kolovrat, as it is called in my religion) as his emblem. So a lot of people don't care to know that the Kolovrat had existed thousands of years before Hitler, and to know what it signifies, so they just hate it.
And we also have some problems with terms. The name of our Religion, that was used to denote it before Christianity came, is know used by the Russian Orthodox Church to name itself. So even the Name was taken away from us, and its meaning was changed.
And since this thread is devoted to Pagan Culture, I would like to post some of our rules that we follow. I posted them already in some other thread, but here they are once again^

1. Honor Rod the Almighty (the God who was the first to exist. The Great Spirit who gave birth to Lada - the Goddess of Love, and who created the rest of the Universe together with Her) and all the Pagan Gods.

2. Live a free life, you are the likeness of your Gods.

3.Remember your ancestors, who have preserved our culture.

4.Be a Warrior and do not kill without necessity.

5.Respect and obey your Parents.

6.Take full responsibility for what you do.

7.Treat Old people and children with understanding.

8.Donít lie to, donít humiliate and donít offend those of your Religion.

9.Remember the Law of hospitality and donít break it without necessity.

10.Love, understand and respect your Wife, Husband and children.

11.Live in harmony with Nature, remember, that it is alive.

12.Live a worthy Life and leave it with dignity.

It is so much better to educate and discuss than to move on in the dark. Light shines where educated people share and you shine bright.
 
selfactivated
#13
Quote: Originally Posted by look3467 View Post

Interesting! I'll be reading. No comments.

Peace>>>AJ

I hear your heart my friend A wise shaman once told me this poem.



A Wise Old Owl Rhyme


'A Wise Old Owl Nursery Rhyme & History'
The origins and history of 'A wise old owl' are vague, however its meaning isn't, basically it would be told to children in an attempt to to teach the child the virtue of being quiet! The lyrics of 'A wise old owl' poem are derived from the saying 'a wise old owl' based on an owl's behaviour of watching and patiently waiting when hunting its prey. Legends concerning the owl are recorded in Greek, Celtic, Native American and Aborigine mythology. The owl is is especially associated with wisdom in Greek mythology being linked with Athena, the Goddess of Wisdom. Athens is named from the Goddess Athena and its emblem is the owl . The owl was, for many years, viewed as a sinister bird only hunting at night when only evil spirits and witches were abroad - "Children should be seen and not heard!"


A wise old owl lived in an oak
The more he saw the less he spoke
The less he spoke the more he heard.
Why can't we all be like that wise old bird?


My wise Shaman friend hasnt spoken in nearly a year the old coot!
Last edited by selfactivated; Jan 26th, 2007 at 02:35 PM..
 
look3467
#14
Quote: Originally Posted by selfactivated View Post

I hear your heart my friend A wise shaman once told me this poem.



A Wise Old Owl Rhyme


'A Wise Old Owl Nursery Rhyme & History'
The origins and history of 'A wise old owl' are vague, however its meaning isn't, basically it would be told to children in an attempt to to teach the child the virtue of being quiet! The lyrics of 'A wise old owl' poem are derived from the saying 'a wise old owl' based on an owl's behaviour of watching and patiently waiting when hunting its prey. Legends concerning the owl are recorded in Greek, Celtic, Native American and Aborigine mythology. The owl is is especially associated with wisdom in Greek mythology being linked with Athena, the Goddess of Wisdom. Athens is named from the Goddess Athena and its emblem is the owl . The owl was, for many years, viewed as a sinister bird only hunting at night when only evil spirits and witches were abroad - "Children should be seen and not heard!"


A wise old owl lived in an oak
The more he saw the less he spoke
The less he spoke the more he heard.
Why can't we all be like that wise old bird?


My wise Shaman friend hasnt spoken in nearly a year the old coot!


Loved it! I do give a hoot, though!

Peace>>>AJ
 
selfactivated
#15
Quote: Originally Posted by look3467 View Post

Loved it! I do give a hoot, though!

Peace>>>AJ


I know you do Prolly I know more than anybody that you do.
 
MikeyDB
#16
In a totally unremarkable movie titled "Island" a character makes the following statement when asked "Who is God"?

"When you close your eyes and wish really really hard for something...God's the one who ignores you."
 
hermanntrude
#17
is that movie based on a book by aldous huxley? he wrote an excellent book by that name. I dont remember that particular phrase but it sounds like it came from the book and i have a terrible memory
 
selfactivated
#18
Quote: Originally Posted by MikeyDB View Post

In a totally unremarkable movie titled "Island" a character makes the following statement when asked "Who is God"?

"When you close your eyes and wish really really hard for something...God's the one who ignores you."


grrrrrr my All of Richmond has been down tonight. Do you realise how fustrating creating a really grat post is to watch it disappear!


LOL I totally agree Mikey but that changes when you believe you ARE Godess You have only yourself to blame that and your manifestation skills
 
L Gilbert
#19
Razzzzzzzzzzzzberry. Deities don't exist. I exist, therefore I am not a goddess.
 
selfactivated
#20
Pfffffft Thats your opinion and you have every right to it thats why Im Pagan *giggle* . I AM a Godess but I wont make you bow .......unless your into it
 
L Gilbert
#21
I have a bow tie, does that count?

I haven't bowed since Chris and Emil started their Chito-ryu in Westbank.
 
selfactivated
#22
yeah yeah ignore the induendo on being dominated by a Godess
 
L Gilbert
#23
Sorry, I'm just a dumb bushape. You shoulda said you wanted to get kinky. That's a whole different ballgame.
 
selfactivated
#24
LOL Cmere


 
selfactivated
#25
I know we're just jokin around BUT you bring up a good point (I dont mean the one in your pants ) Pagan beliefs see sex as natral and high magic. In fact Sex Magic is the most powerful, its all about creation and joy.
 
L Gilbert
#26
......... and fun.
BTW, the only other point I have is the one at the top of my noggin. Not as sharp as it used to be, though. I think it's worn down from age.
 
selfactivated
#27
awwww your pretty sharp for an ol man
 
L Gilbert
#28
tanx.
 
vinod1975
#29
Pagan culture never died. It changed, was hidden, became hushed -- but never died. We can look around and see that many Old ways are still part of everyday life. Here are a few examples.
A personal favorite is the candle-magic ritual we do once a year, celebrating one's incarnation with the chant "Happy Birthday to you." A wish is made, the candles blown out and gifts given. This custom dates back to worship of Artemis, Greek Goddess of the Moon. On Her day, cakes were baked in the shape of a crescent moon and decorated with candles. If worshipers could blow out the candles in a single breath, the Goddess would look upon them with favor. Whether ancient Greek myth, or a modern-day spell, the way we celebrate our birthday is truly magic!
"AH-CHOO!!!" Bless you. (If you lived during the time of Tiberius Caesar, you may need it.) Ancient Rome circa 150 A.D. was stricken with a deadly disease, which the first symptom was sneezing. People, including Caesar, believed that the more blessing you received from others, the more likely you would be to survive. Perhaps today's common courtesy was yesterday's healing spell? The myth of Prometheus includes him sneezing, having caught cold from stealing the fire of the Gods. (And we know what happened to him.)
Perhaps the richest remnant of Pagan culture still survives in the wedding ceremony! Terms like "giving your hand in marriage" and "tying the knot" certainly refer to handfasting. It doesn't take a Celtic scholar to recognize the word "Bride" as an Old name for the Goddess. And Groom? In matriarchal life, the man came to work in the wife's family's home. A groom is a term used to describe a laborer who cares for the horses. The term husband, meaning "bound to the house" or housebound, also dates back to such customs. The word matrimony refers to the custom of inheritances being passed down through maternal blood lines. "Matri" means mother; "mony" or monium, means money. But, in ancient Germany, carrying the bride over the threshold welcomes her into the groom's family, since his ancestors were once buried below the home!
The wedding cake was baked by the couple, as a symbol of the ingredients of their lives coming together as one. A form of sympathetic magic? And the kiss at the altar? In times of Old, the union was consummated right there in front of witnesses. Even today, a marriage can often be considered legally void if never consummated. The term honeymoon refers to the lunar cycle immediately following the wedding. For the full lunar cycle, the couple ate honey each day, believing it to be a sweet aphrodisiac! (Some couples still use honey in their bedroom revelry, but in a different way....) June weddings are still fashionable, perhaps dating back to the days where a festive Beltane celebration (late April/early May) resulted in conception! (June weddings are rooted in Spring fever.) Brides, not grooms, were also showered with wheat, so that they could bear children like wheat brings bread.
The wedding ring placed on the third finger was believed to be a direct connection to the heart. This was even called the Medical Finger, which doctors used to stir medicines. If poison were present, the doctor's heart would skip a beat. But of all places to wear wedding jewelry, the ring is likely related to handfasting. Why not a wedding necklace, brooch or tiara? Also, the action of the finger penetrating the circular ring is not all that different from other Pagan symbols of union. Likewise, wearing and throwing the "garter" seems not so distant.
Giving flowers to a loved one? Flowers are brightly colored, heavily scented reproductive organs! An agricultural society might see this. So might our deeply rooted animal instincts which relate color and scent to the courting rituals of nearly every species, including homosapiens.
Knock on wood? This probably dates back to the Druids. Opening an umbrella indoors? Umbrella comes from the Latin word for shade. The device was used as a parasol ("stop the sun") before it was used as protection from rain. Not opening it indoors showed respect for the realm of the solar deities. Tie a string on your finger to remember something? (Sounds like cord magic to me.) I wonder why sailors put so much skill into the knots they tied over the centuries? Fishermen and fisherwomen, even today, have special words they say when throwing their lines into the water.
Naming things seems rich in magic. Look at the names of farms, race horses, and even pets. Notice that boats are referred to as She and Her, probably linked back to She of the Sea. (Probably no accident when they named the greatest ship "The Queen Mary.") Even the Greek and Latin languages that descended from Pagan Europe assign gender to every person, place, or thing. Perhaps all things were linked to a God or a Goddess. Days of the week, months of the year -- some are still named after the Old Ones. Friday the 13th? (Can you get more linked to Goddess worship than that?) Perhaps it was the fairly new beliefs, from cultures who did not worship the Goddess or note her lunar cycles, that gave Friday the 13th an unlucky connotation.
We can go over hundreds of holiday customs that date back to Pagan roots. We can find Pagan traces in many practices of the newer religions. But more importantly, we can make our own new traditions every day. We are catalysts of the future, not mere conduits to the past! We are the Ancestors of tomorrow. See the magic in everyday events, like knotting your neck tie, leashing your pet, or even fastening your seat belt. Feel the sacred union when you share any event with a loved one, whether sharing a hamper or sharing a bath. Feel the sudden release of stored up energy as you uncork that special old bottle of wine, or open that priceless photo album. See all cycles as magic; use the monthly rent payment as a blessing for the home.
Doing so is the difference between a culture which has never died -- and a culture which is truly brought to life!
 
look3467
#30
You know all that and still,.............................I mean still, you believe in Jesus?

Thought I just comment on this one. I'm out of here.

Peace>>>AJ>>>
 

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