Posts Tagged ‘paganism’

We stare into the burning fire
And see in their resplendent light
The granting of our heart’s desire
Or else the terrors of the night.

From tarot card reading to the study of bird flight, there are many different forms of divination, but in my opinion the most reliable ones are all related to fire.

Now, I should probably admit that I’m a bit of a firebug. From candlelight to bonfires, flames never fail to capture my interest. Maybe there’s some subconscious longing in me for the warmth and security which came from ancient hearth fires.

There are a number of ways in which fire can be used for divination, some of them more practical than others. The practice of fire gazing for example, whilst it is for me an amazing experience which I would recommend to anyone, wouldn’t be ideal for apartment-dwellers or people with shared gardens. Instead, I would love to share with you a few ways in which fire can be used in divination on a more everyday basis.

Note: When using fire for divination, make sure that you are not wearing any loose clothing and that your hair is tied back. You should always have some way of putting out fires to hand and be careful that you handle fire with respect.



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I can teach you to write in 15 minutes or your money back!

We’re looking for someone to cover the NYC anarchomystical, pagan, psychedelic, magickal, herbalist, real-foodist, primitivist scene, with a special heart-warming interest in pieces that show or talk about where the latter group of fun words intersect (but we’ll defs take them a la carte!). We’d like our readers to hear about events, talks, happenings, shop profiles (botanica, wiccan, herbalist, apothecary-ist, etc), and all the rest that comes with the territory. Think you can get down with all that? Email us:

newoldtraditions [at] gmail [dot] com

For information on what we’re about and what we look for in a writer please check out this link.

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The organizers of the 2nd Annual Haymarket Festival in Springfield, Illinois, did so on behalf of the people of Springfield. Organizer Drew Duzinskas said, “It’s about coming together in spring. I like to see cool things happen this time of year.” His intention in participating in the planning was to put on an event that people would enjoy and take home a positive message, as well as engender a sense of community. Spring was in the air in the form of mild temperatures and intermittent rain sprinkles, but that did not quash the spirits of the dozens of people in attendance. A maypole was erected, and many folks (self included) had fun running around and around wrapping streamers around the pole, in memory of the traditional fertility rites of spring.


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LERWICK, UNITED KINGDOM - JANUARY 31: Locals dressed as Vikings march through the streets of Lerwick January 31, 2006, in the Shetland Islands, Scotland.... The climax of the day comes with participants in full costume hauling a Viking longboat through the streets of Lerwick to the edge of town where up to 1000 paraders will throw their flaming torches into the galley. (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

At These New Old Traditions we talk a lot about reclaiming lost heritages and spiritual traditions (here and here), and how our hyper-capitalist consumer culture has made doing so rather difficult (here and here). Personally, I am, at times overwhelmingly, interested in the myriad of ways in which people of European descent handle these issues without doing once again to other cultures what they have done for quite some time now. How does a descendant of Europe reclaim and honor one’s own heritage without being just a touch racist? Is it even possible?

I start with a quote from Ward Churchill whose take on this discussion I have kept close to home since reading it in Derrick Jensen’s book of interviews Listening to the Land. Churchill states,


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Recently I’ve come across a handful of interesting articles dealing explicitly with paganism and the politically conservative-minded people who embrace it. The most recent take came from the ever-wonderfully informative blog The Wild Hunt titled “Asatru and the Alternative Right.” This is a subject that I find extremely fascinating, both because of its constantly volatile nature, due specifically to the inherent race/whiteness politics that inevitably comes along with it, as well as the potential for real discussions on the effects and actuality of an exiled so-called “white” race from its own indigenous heritage. Fun, no? Yes.

We’ll be commenting heavily on this debate in future posts. For now check out the linked articles and let us know what you think…. My take is in the editing phase. Need a little more time.

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How Stuff Works has a podcast on the history of the persecution of witches, as well as some basic info on contemporary neo-paganism and wicca. At times it’s a little bit “Wiccans believe…,” but still decent and at times properly funny.

You can listen to it here.

The series has a ton of podcasts on other stuff as well. Link to the archives here.

Thanks to K Smith Reveler for the link.

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Within the hagiographies (fancy word for the study of saints), St. Patrick is known as the man who, among many other valiant, if questionable, acts, rid Ireland of the dreaded snake! How a single person with nothing more than a walking stick could shoo away thousands of snakes into the Irish sea, I have no idea, but there it is. Personally, I feel it would be far easier for a man with a walking stick (and a religion) to rid an island of pagans, than it would be to…wait a second…. Could it…. Yes. You guessed it. (more…)

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