Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Saturnalia with the Romans

We are in the midst of Saturnalia, so consider this article by Classics scholar Mary Beard on “Five Things the Romans Did at Christmas.” The headline was just to grab you, because she begins, “OK, the Romans didn’t actually have Christmas. And even Christian Romans didn’t celebrate Jesus’ birthday on 25 December until at least […]

The Greatest “Occult” Movies

From Ultraculture, a list of nine great movies about the occult and magick — and nine more. But since there are “honorable mentions” as well, you get more! Obvious choices (Rosemary’s Baby, The Exorcist), as well as films that present the subject in an exploitative manner (such as those of Dario Argento) have been left out… as […]

The Anthropologist and the Ancestors

Thanks to Sabina Magliocco, I read this interesting piece about a Dutch anthropologist experiencing an ancestor ritual, one involving both the ancestors of the people in New Guinea whom he is visiting and his own. And even though science failed to explain everything, the way I viewed the world was based on the idea that […]

Why “Aliens” Might Be Invisible

Magonia, the review blog of esoteric books (0r should that be, books on esoterica?), recently revisited two books on Unidentified Flying Objects from the 1950s by Morris K. Jessup, the first writer, they say, to use the term “UFO” in a commercial publication. Ah, those were the days, I take it, when the assumed evidence […]

She Started Life as “Astarte Lulu” . . .

. . . and ended it as “Louise.” But read who her father was. I don’t see any family resemblance though. Still, there is a story here!

Animal Sacrifice and ‘Hard’ Polytheism

There was some discussion last week at the American Academy of Religion annual meeting as to whether the Contemporary Pagan Studies Group should sponsor or co-sponsor a session devoted to issues surrounding animal sacrifice. Some voices in the Pagan world suggest that you are not really a “hard” polytheist (truly understanding the gods as independent […]

A New ‘Guide’ for Lithuanian Romuva

Jonas Trinkunas, the leader of Lithuania’s Romuva Pagan movement, died last January — click here for video of his funeral. His successor as “guide” has now been elected: Kriva Inija Trinkuniene. Inija Trinkuniene was born in 1951  . . . in 1969 graduated from high school in 1974 . . .  at Vilnius University has […]

Get the Harvard Classics, Free

The Harvard Classics, also known as  “Dr. Eliot’s/The Five Foot Shelf of Books,”  are available as a free download. From a time when university presidents actually cared what people read, as opposed to just the size of their donations: What does the massive collection preserve? For one thing . . .  it’s “a record of […]

Sexuality and New Religious Movements

Sexuality and New Religious Movements, a collection edited by Henrik Bogdan (associate editor of The Pomegranate) and Jim Lewis, an American teaching in Norway, has been released by the academic publisher Palgrave Macmillan. So far it is only in hardback, hence expensive. Jeffrey Kripal, a noted scholar on sex and spirituality, has this to say: […]

A New Investigation of Fairy Encounters

This request for help with a compilation of contemporary Fairy encounters and lore comes from Simon Young of the re-launched Fairy Investigation Society. The FIS was founded in 1927, died in the early 1990s, and in late 2014 it came back to life. The survey (‘the fairy census’) is split into three parts: (i) for […]