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Posts Tagged ‘blessings’

Twice-Born

July 8, 2018 5 comments

The God caught Himself in the mirror and stood in awe

Absorbed, never thinking

That behind Him stalked His killers

 

Torn limb from limb

Body boiled, limbs roasted

 

The wine stained eyes fell from His mirror

Rolled up to His Father, whose wrath blazed

The furious bolt crashed

 

Dead fell the feasters

Dead fell the God-hungry

Living fell the beating heart of Lenaeus

 

Taken up by Athena it was blessed with knowing

Taken up by Demeter it was blessed with vitality

Taken up by Rhea it was blessed with purification

Taken up by Zeus it was blessed with power

Devoured by Semele, Dimetor came forth

 

The ivy-haired God shone forth

Twice-born of Semele learned again

To crawl, to step, to walk, to dance, to sing, to rave, to fight

 

He took up His gifts and power in glory

His sword felled every foe before Him

His thyrsus struck frenzy into His followers

His grapes crossed the world and brought wine to all peoples

His wine poured and dythrambic verse fell in power from His mouth

His ivy marked His paths and ways for worshipers and pilgrims

To follow Him where He would lead

 

O Zagreus Dimetor, O Reborn One! You show us the Ways!

O Isodaetes, You give free that we may give!

O Mighty Dragon, Your jaws have torn the foe!

Io Dionysos!

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For Empedokles

January 23, 2018 2 comments

Earth wove you up
Water filled you up
Air enlivened you
Fire inspired you

Earth dried and cooled
Your flesh was born
Water cooled and moistened
Your blood flowed
Air moistened and warmed
Your breath rose
Fire warmed and dried
Your spirit ascended

The oldest ways
Bore your gift
Knowledge honed
Inspiration made

Revealer of the Fourfold Root!
Revealer of the Elements’ Flow!
Revealer of Conjunctions!
Revealer of the Great Work!

O Rhizômatos!
O Magos!
O Iatromantis!
O Theios Anêr!

Bless and impart Your Wisdom!
Bless and impart Your Genius!
Bless and impart Your Knowledge!
Bless and impart Your Inspiration!

 

Living Religion

January 6, 2014 5 comments

On days like today I make prayers and offerings not only to the Sons and Daughters of Muspelheim, but the Sons and Daughters of Nifelheim.  I smoke to the Gods, Ancestors, and spirits to keep me safe as I go to work.  To keep me on the road.  To keep me safe from harm.  For the snow to be gentle with me, to work with my car.  I smoke for my car, that it carries me well, and gets me safely to my destination.

This is where my metaphoric rubber meets the road.  When I engage with the world I engage with the Gods, Ancestors, and spirits.  There is no, can be no separation.  If there was, then the cold Ice around me as I walk to my car would not touch me nor inspire equal worship to the Fire I cradle in my hand as I light my pipe when inside it.  If there was truly separation the cold could not touch me in heart, or body, inspiring words that praise the pristine beauty and fierce bite, and the heat would not inspire words or prayer to praise the warmth in my hands or the small flame I put to tobacco to say my prayers.  There can be no separation because the Gods, Ancestors, and spirits are all around me.

Yes, even in something so mundane as starting my car there are spirits: the spirit of my car, the spirits of all those that fill its tank, the spirit of Fire that makes the engine go, the spirits of Earth that form the car, the spirits of Water that lubricate the car, the spirits of animals whose bodies line the cars’ various innards, the tires themselves made from rubber with spirits of their own, the spirits of Ice that keep the car cool in the summer, and the spirits of Air that help to warm my car.  There are Gods and spirits of roads and crossroads, local and large, great and small.  There are Gods to pray to, to worship everywhere one turns, if one but pays the mind and chooses to.  I could split myself into a million millions of me and still not have enough of me to pray to, offer to, worship all the spirits great and small that surround me.  So, I do what I can.  I light the tobacco after a prayer to It and Fire, and smoke and pray to all Who wish to hear to my words, praying to my Gods, Ancestors, and spirits, speaking to the breathing, living Jörð and all Who share this time and space with me upon Her.  I pray to Odin, my Father, through His heiti Gangleri the Wanderer and Traveler to help keep me safe and keep me keen, first among the many Gods I will pray to quickly before I pull out of the drive.

There are the landvaettir all over, some I would call local Gods, such as the rivers that run near town, and Others that live in the heart of parks and Others that live with humans, landvaettir and housevaettir.  There are spirits, vaettir, all around, and though I may not worship Them all (how could I, They are so many?) They all are due my respect as I pass through Their homes, territories, holy places.  I pass what I view as a herme each and every day on the way to work; one of my neighbors has 3 large stones set one upon the other, and there is a spirit there that, when it catches my eye, I nod to in respect as I drive past it.  The ground I walk on is full of life, covered in snow.  The sky is alive with little spirits that twinkle in my headlights, some landing on my windshield, melting from the heat of my car.

There is no place I, or anyone can go where the spirits are not.  I am truly blessed.

Odin Project: Day 30

November 30, 2012 2 comments

This is the final day of the Odin Project for this 2012 year.  Thank you to Galina, who inspired me to be part of it, and everyone who has participated in it.  Thank you to everyone who has followed my blog through this month; I hope that the Odin Project has somehow touched you, or brought you closer to Him.

Long suffered He | who traded Eye and Life

for giving wisdom to the Worlds;

Praise to the Allfather | given in gratitude

for gifts heaped upon gifts

 

Hail to Odin | in times of peace

for its blessings are hard-won;

Hail to Odin | in times of strife

for oft does it visit

 

Ever-mindful is Odin | of His children

who wanders the whole of Midgard

Hugin and Munin | ever-watch and wheel

and speak news to His waiting Ear

Odin Project: Day 22

November 22, 2012 Leave a comment

Happy are those | who while they live

Know peace and frith at home,

For seldom is all | well in one’s life

That blessings should go unmarked

 

Happy are those | who earns one’s keep

and has all that one needs,

For seldom is happy | he who is rich

For wealth is fickle and fleeting

Here You Are

August 7, 2012 Leave a comment

The day begins about 6pm

A quick walk upstairs to a cold dinner

Here you are

 

I put away the dishes

The food into little tupperware

Here you are

 

I check my email

Get ready for work

Here you are

 

I flip burgers

I grill and sweep and mop

Here you are

 

I come home tired

The world enveloped in dark

Here you are

 

I sit down to write

To somehow put words to the gratefulness I feel

That here you are

Nonviolence

April 21, 2011 Leave a comment

Nonviolence is a way of life that I’ve benefited from; blacks are integrated in the schools I’ve attended, I’m able to drink from the same fountain as blacks and vice versa, and we can eat in the same restaurants.  Through his example, Martin Luther King, Jr. forged a new way ahead for this country.  Child labor is no longer the norm because of the sit-in strikes and union organizing that began here in Michigan.  I’m able to marry a person other than a white woman, and my bisexuality is steadily becoming more accepted through the use of nonviolent activism.  I’ve been to protests and sit-ins supporting teachers unions and the rights of faculty to equal representation.  I’ve protested slashed funding for schools, and what I see as the illegal wiretapping and arrests of peace activists.  Yet these all seemed so inert once the rhetoric was over.  After several of these protests I would ask “Now what?  Where do we go besides voicing our anger and concern?  Does no one have a plan for moving forward?”  More often than not, people didn’t.  This is not the fault of nonviolence, but the poor planning of activists.  For those who planned to succeed, there indeed was success in their efforts.  Faculty got representation, people became informed.  Those who did not plan to succeed, to go beyond the outrage and anger, stirred no one to action.  You have to actually believe in the effort to succeed.  If you think “well, this won’t pass” or “this can’t get better” then pack up the sign and go home because you’ve already relinquished your mind to defeat.  Nonviolence does not mean “I don’t take a stand.”

In a lot of ways I am nonviolent.  I don’t advocate violence against people, and I don’t advocate violence to fix political, religious, personal, or most other problems.  Yet I have a dividing line.  Do I think that violence is the answer to most questions?  No.  Violence, in my view, is a response you reserve for someone trying to kill or irreparably harm  you or your family.  I am not nonviolent in that way; I am selectively violent.  It is a last resort for when you or yours are under threat.  This, perhaps, is where I diverge from a lot of people who are active in some political, social, or spiritual way.  I fervently believe in defending yourself when under threat.  I realize pacifism and nonviolence are two separate things.  The Princeton Wordnet Dictionary defines pacifism as “the doctrine that all violence is unjustifiable” and nonviolence as “passive resistance: peaceful resistance to a government by fasting or refusing to cooperate”.  I definitely can follow nonviolence up to physical, psychological, or spiritual harm.  I simply cannot follow pacifism.  I have lived pacifism, and it nearly got me killed, and did not solve the problems I was facing.  Loving thy neighbor does little good if that neighbor is trying to gouge out your eye with a switchblade.  When I stopped turning the other cheek and fought back I had to watch my back a lot less.  Does this mean that pacifism is without value?  No, but it is not a path I can follow.

I have been taught most of my life to fight only when necessary.  I’ve also been taught most of my life to follow the example of Dr. King and Ghandi, and in the arenas where these two men excelled I can definitely agree…but that said, I do not know if I would have the restraint to allow myself to be beaten by a mob.  Perhaps that is what made these men, and those who followed them, truly incredible.  Much of my life, I have seen pacifism do nothing but making victims of people.  I have seen the fruits of nonviolence.  To me, the two are not the same, and making the choice to peacefully resist and to take the beating is different to me than saying “no violence, ever”.  I don’t know because I’ve never been put into the positions that Dr. King and Ghandi were.  I never risked my life protesting; the protests and sit-ins I have been to were not met with resistance beyond deaf ears.  I’ve not protested a G8 conference, or the hostile takeover of a community farm like South Central Park.  Would I?  Certainly.  There are causes I believe in enough to risk my life, to put my life on the line for.  I want a better world for my son; how can I not?

I’m watching Fierce Light: When Spirit Meets Action on Netflix.  It chronicles the works of spiritual activists, those who take stands for social, political, economic, or other issues from a spiritual base.  Something the speaker for the Network of Spiritual Progressives, Van Jones, says that struck me is “I’ve got to get active.  I’ve got to do something.  I’ve got to put some feet up under these prayers.”  Signing petitions, going to rallies, strikes, protests, making those prayers said in private heard to the world…to me, is what nonviolence informed by spirituality is all about.  If I believe that a woman’s right to choose is sacred, then to me, my voice needs to raise when that right is threatened.  If I believe in unions and they are being busted, then I raise my voice in support of unions.  It is putting action to our words, our way to fulfill Ghandi’s admonishment to “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”  In terms of Pagans, Starhawk, M. Macha NightMare, and Patrick McCollum are three such people; many activists, such as those found in the Reclaiming Tradition also engage in spiritually-based activism.  I hope that as time goes on we’ll see many more people standing up for one another, for the environment, and for peace.  We do not need to agree on all our spiritual points to strive together.  As a matter of fact, I would rather we didn’t go for homogeneity.  I happen to like diversity, and learning from a wealth of viewpoints.  I like people to disagree with me, to have their own opinions, to make up their own minds.  I enjoy debate, I enjoy the times where we can find similarities, side-by-side.  We can still find peace, community, and fellowship despite our differences.  This is why I still believe in a Pagan community, one that comes together to celebrate, love, hope, worship, support, and help each other.  We don’t need to agree on everything to do that.  We can stand together in support of one another, can bring our many voices to the table speaking in defense of our rights and the rights of others, speak to power where people cannot, and rise up to defend ourselves and others from oppression.

May the Gods bless those who speak for those whose voice is silenced.  May the Gods bless those who through their words and actions work to save others.  May the Gods bless those who through their words and actions work to heal and help this, and the other Worlds.

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