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“‘As the gods pour, so do mortals’: An alternative conception of divine reciprocity” by John Halstead (Part 2)

PART 2: AN ALTERNATIVE CONCEPTION OF DIVINE RECIPROCITY In Part 1 of this essay (published last month), I critiqued a popular understanding of divine reciprocity. But there is another conception of divine reciprocity. It is rooted in the notion of…

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“‘As mortals pour, so do the gods’: A critique of divine reciprocity” by John Halstead (Part 1)

As I pour out the water or wine or honey on the earth, I create, in the form of the stream of liquid, a living connection between myself and the earth. It is a visual and visceral representation of my connection to the earth. And in so doing, I experience both an “emptying” and also simultaneously a “filling”, as if I am both emptying the vessel of myself and filling myself at the same time, as if I am both the cup that pours and the earth which receives. In this act, I restore in a small measure that sense of sensual connection I have to the world. This for me is the true meaning of divine reciprocity.

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