Archive Page 2

Glastonbury Returns To The Dark Ages…

Catholic marchers turn on Glastonbury pagans

Source: The Guardian (UK)

In scenes reminiscent of medieval witch-hunts, Catholic pilgrims in Glastonbury have attacked pagans and threatened to “cleanse” them from the town.

Local pagans were pelted with salt and branded witches who “would burn in hell” during a procession organized by Youth 2000, a conservative Catholic lay group. The Magick Box, a pagan shop on the route of the march, was also singled out and attacked.

Maya Pinder, the owner of the shop, said: “We’ve had to hear comments such as ‘burn the witches’, we’ve had salt thrown in our faces and at our shop, people were openly saying they were ‘cleansing Glastonbury of paganism’.

(http://www.guardian.co.uk/religion/Story/0,,1939477,00.html)

With Glastonbury’s array of Pagan sites such as The Tor, chalice wells gardens and the Goddess temple. Not to mention the numerous pagan supply stores.

I have always felt very at home there but with this recent news, I am very concerned. I had almost forgotten how prejudice people could be even in a place that is supposed to be open and friendly.

Having said that it is still a great place to visit and it won’t stop many Pagan visitors.

Harm None: The meaning of the Rede

The Wiccan Rede is a long poem which is often condensed down to the last line: “An it harm none, do what you will.” This is again shortened to simply “Harm None”. Sounds simple doesn’t it? but you can interpret it in many different ways. These two little words don’t always mean the same thing to everyone. So I thought I would offer up some ideas that might get you thinking.

You probably already have a good idea of what you think “Harm None” means, but we shouldn’t assume that ours is the only interpretation out there. For example:

  • Harm to Yourself – Should Wiccans steer clear of anything that could be considered harmful to themselves. Ok so the obvious thing here is self harm, but i think we are all agreed that self harm and suicide are never good things to do. however, should our lifestyles be harmless too? For example, Does it mean that we should’nt smoke, drink alcohol or do drugs of any sort. By extension could we include body modification? Afterall, tatooing, piercing and scarification are all damage to the body.
  • Harm in Self Defense – Can you harm someone in order to protect yourself? Say you were being attacked should you refrain from trying to strike your attacker or remain passive. Does that mean that Wiccans should not carry guns or be in the military?
  • Non-Physical Harm – Do words count? You’re in a bad mood and you tell your irritating brother to go have sex with himself(as it were) Is this against the Rede?
  • Consensual Harm – Does injury to a willing person count as harm, As a Wiccan should you refuse to play contact sport including boxing. What if you enjoy bondage or rough sex?
  • Being Vegetarian– Does the killing animals to eat in order to survive count? Even though this is how humans have survived for hundreds of thousands of years, including our ancient Pagan ancestors.
  • Harm to Belongings -Is vandalism against the Rede? Yet graffiti is art..

Having said all this How you choose to live by the Rede is your decision, I hope this gave you food for thought.

 

Defending Paganism

For some reason I have always dreaded the phrase, What tradition do you follow?
Not just for the fact that defining my religion experience in a handy bite sized 10 words or less kind of way is easy but because when I utter the word ‘Wiccan’ to many of my fellows, I get a reaction ranging from the patronising to the down right rude.
Now I am not going to go into a big speech about how Pagans are people too and everyone has aright to their own opinion and the theory of being nice to everyone and respecting their religious belief, however, what I object to fellow Pagans objecting to labeling myself pagan and getting on their intellectual high horse. “Well i have objections with Wicca, blah, blah, blah”

And no I am not one of those that believe that every time “something works for you” it is necessarily right way to something nor would I say there is one true way of doing something ‘cos we all know where that kind of thinking can take us.

“Yes,” I always reply. “Me too, but my take on it is…” then the conversation usually seems to shift to the reading and learning side of the craft. “Yes, I’ve read that to…no i didn’t take it as rit.”
I know what you’re think, yes, there are some wanna bee fluffy bunnies etc. And yep, there are some people who don’t research and take things as bible who like to show off there pentagram.
But you know what? there are some who do research, think critically and try to improve. So maybe before we have one foot in the stirrup of moral high horsedum please remember that.
I know, I know newbies yeah, cut them some slack, they are learning. Remember what a newbie you were when you started out, Shut up we all had a touch of that! yes you did, Yes you did!

If anyone has any comments or thoughts just let me know.

PAGAN PODCAST:Deo’s shadow


At last a Pagan Podcast that doesn’t suck or the whos music doesn’t make me feel physically sick! Deo’s shadow is a Pagan Podcast that really goes in-depth into the philosophy of Paganism and polytheism, it also explores the paradigm of Paganism and Wicca.

It is fantastic! Stories, fantastic music and great guest speakers and infromation sections.

deos-shadow.com or you can go to the link on my blogroll.

http://www.deos-shadow.com/

DECEMBER’S TOP FILM: The Wicker man

Every month I will post my best loved and most watched film; this month is its The Wicker Man, dubbed “the Citizen Kane of horror films. Sgt. Howie, a ‘Christian copper’ goes to Summerisle in Scotland to investigate the disappearance of a young girl. But are the locals just weird and unhelpful or is there something more devious a foot? He becomes determined to get to the bottom her disappearance. Starring, Edward Woodward, Christopher Lee, Britt Ekland, Diane Cliento, Ingrid Pitt.

Directed in 1973 by Robin Hardy and the screenplay by Anthony Schaffer. Hold on a tick, 1970s, Christopher Lee, horror film this can mean only one thing, (Que bolts of lightning and scary “DA DA DAA” music.) But you’d be wrong this is no hammer horror. No cheese here, not even a whiff. On the contrary it is literate and compelling.
Naive, Sgt. Howie’s isolation and confusion grows as the islanders hamper his efforts to trace one of their own, but he continues to investigate further until he discovers the ancient Pagan practices of this community. Yet at the finally will he be the hunter or the hunted?

Paul Giovanni’s soundtrack is practically the Holy Grail for soundtrack aficionados as original recordings were destroyed along with the negatives and the outtakes of the film were stored at the vault in Shepperton studios, which were thrown out and used as landfill under the M3 motorway.
The score was definitely a highlights for me as it is so unusual of the genre with eerie instrumental folk that brings out the superstition in you.

I am very lucky that my first viewing of the film was the full Director’s cut and not the butchered original theatrical release, I would definitely recommend seeing the Director’s cut first!

This film is a cult classic and one of my Pagan treats!