Intermission (Pagan Blog Project, Week 17)

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If you’ve actually been counting, it’s week 20 of the Pagan Blog Project this week. Since I’m posting for week 17, you would be correct in noticing that I disappeared for a month.

Part of me is glad that it was only a month; the rest of me is surprised it was only a month. It seems like it’s been much longer, my intermission. Let it suffice to say that I missed you, and that my intermission was academically related. Graduate school exam time can be brutal. This year, mine was complicated by a complete shift in my dissertation work. Good things are afoot. Sadly they took me away from the internet. Sorry about that.

Other things happened during my intermission as well. It’s interesting, and not that all surprising, that I ended up stopping after two posts about the Thracian Horseman/Hero. He’s been busy here, too. This work has been this way: mention a deity and then that deity’s Presence starts making itself incredibly, obviously known.

I’ll write more about that mysterious experience (and it is a Mystery) as I find words for it. As noted when I started this blog, my (Samo)thracian journey is an ongoing process, and in many ways, I couldn’t even tell you where we’re headed yet. But I can tell you that we’re on the horse.

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More on the Horseman (Pagan Blog Project, Week 16)

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Last week, I posted a poem about the Horseman. Previously, I have written about Sabazios, one of the versions of the Thracian Horseman, and linked to others’ excellent writings about Him.

What’s so special about a guy on a horse?

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The image of a Hero (yes, another one of the Thracian Horseman’s names) riding on a horse, either into battle or off to save some innocent in distress, has been with us longer than writing. Even prehistoric cave paintings have horses and riders in them.

There is something epic about the horse: a living, breathing vehicle, that we’ve lost in our modern world of automobiles. Continue reading

Going Quiet (Pagan Blog Project, Week 14)

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Sometimes, I have nothing to say, believe it or not.

This week has been one of those times. I’m dealing both with many things happening offline, and with some deep spiritual thinking and working around my practice, none of which has progressed to the place where I can put it into words. Going quiet is what I do, rather than simply filling the silence with noise.

Sometimes, quiet is good.

Have a great week, and I’ll be back with a more substantive post next Friday.

Fear (Pagan Blog Project, Week 11)

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“Purity is piety, honesty, and fear of the gods.”
– inscription on the walls of the Ptolemaic-era temple of Horus, Edfu, Egypt

“I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past me I will turn to see fear’s path. When the fear has gone, there will be nothing. Only I will remain.”
– the Bene Gesserit Litany Against Fear, quoted by Frank Herbert in Dune

“I am not afraid of an army of lions led by a sheep. I am afraid of an army of sheep led by a lion.”
– Alexander III “the Great” of Makedon

Fear is an important concept for the modern-day Pagan who embraces the chthonic traditions of Thrace. To the Greeks, a titanismos was a Thracian battle-hymn so fierce, so filled with the terror of the sons and daughters of Nyx, that the Thracians’ enemies would simply turn and flee, if they weren’t frozen to the spot. And of Titanismos as the modern acknowledgment of our Titanic progenitors, our brother the Anomalous Thracian is fond of saying: “This is Titanismos. You should run.”

What does it really mean to have “fear of the gods,” as the Egyptian inscription instructs Horus’s priests to have? Can fear ever be a positive thing, particularly related to the idea being afraid of the Divine? What about other kinds of fear? Are they a force to be avoided, or, as the Litany quoted above suggests, could they become a weapon to use to our benefit?

Continue reading