Humanistic Paganism

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Blasphemy! by Starstuff, Contemplating

Blasphemy laws are one of the most egregious and severe forms of religious privilege.  It is the use of state-sponsored violence to attack someone for speaking in ways that religious leaders don’t like.   Yet many countries, including the United States,…

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The Moon Steps Aside to give us the Perseid Meteor Shower! by Starstuff, Contemplating

She thought she could now actually feel the Earth turn–not just imagine it in her head, but really feel it in the pit of her stomach. It was like descending in a fast elevator. She craned her neck back further,…

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“Humanistic Heathens defend their support of marriage equality” by John Halstead

The high priest of the Icelandic Heathen group, Ásatrúarfélagið, has reported receiving hate mail from abroad from other Heathens who disapprove of the liberal beliefs and attitudes of the Icelandic group, particularly the group’s respect for gay rights and its fight to be allowed to marry same-sex couples.

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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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