“Season of the Witch(crap), Part 1”
“Season of the Witch(crap), Part 2”
“Witchcrap”: superficial journalistic treatments of Wicca, Witchcraft, and related Pagan paths.
• In The Atlantic,“Young black women are leaving Christianity and embracing African witchcraft in digital covens.” Except the article discusses a convention and gets to the digital stuff later. I think the “penchant for digital religion” extends across racial boundaries
• Meanwhile, “Though it is the subtext of savagery that animates narratives around witches, white women who take up the mantle of witch magic rarely understand themselves to be engaging in Indian or savage play,” proclaims the online magazine New Inquiry.
• The Australian Catholic magazine Mercator keeping an eye on Wicca too, but the article is by Massimo Introvigne, who is a well-known scholar of new religious movements and also a Roman Catholic. “The Rise and Rise of Wicca.”
• Spike groans, “Spare Me This Pagan Revival.” “Pagans are generally perverts, and not even sexy ones.”
• And from India, Swarajya magazine offers “The Religion They Want to Build,” which notes the Indo-Europeaness of much revived Western Paganism:
As is expected from the linguistic kinship among Indo-European languages, European Pagan cultures show striking similarities with various Indic indigenous traditions. For instance, among Lithuanian Neo Pagans, the notion of Damumas as a foundation of the world order is a central idea. According to Lithuanian ethnologist and Romuva ideologue Jonas Trinkunas, the word Damumas is linked etymologically to the Sanskrit dharma and the Pali Dhamma. J P Mallory, a prominent Indo-European scholar cites another linguistic parallel in a Lithuanian proverb — ‘Dievas dave dantis; Dievas duous duonoss’. The proverb translates as ‘God gave us teeth, God will give bread’. The Sanskrit equivalent of the proverb is Devas adadat datas, Devas dat dhanas.
Not so crappy. And another indication that some Hindus are realizing that they have more in common with us than with the Middle Eastern monotheisms.
3 thoughts on “Season of the Witch(crap), Part 3”
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Regarding the similarity between Lithuanian pagan religious beliefs and Indic indigenous traditions, consider that some of the languages of India are Indo-European due to the Indo-Europeans having migrated “from the Yamnaya and related cultures in the Pontic–Caspian steppe, starting at c.?4000 BCE. Their descendants spread throughout Europe and parts of Asia, forming new cultures with the people they met on their way, including the Corded Ware culture in Northern Europe and the Vedic culture in the Indian subcontinent. These migrations ultimately seeded the cultures and languages of most of Europe, Greater Iran, and much of the Indian subcontinent (and subsequently resulted in the largest and most broadly spoken language family in the world).” (from Wikipedia).
I’d also like to note that Lithuanian is a very conservative language in that it has kept many grammatical functions that have been lost in other Indo-European languages, such as the dual verbal form (I speak, You and me speak, We speak, etc.) [I attempted to study Lithuanian back in the 1990s, after discovering that my grandmother was born in a village outside of Vilnius. I finally gave up as I found it to be more difficult than dealing with Russian verbs of motion! ::smile::]
“Lithuanian is often said to be the most conservative living Indo-European language, retaining features of Proto-Indo-European now lost in other languages.” (from Wikipedia)
Because of that familial (?) relationship, I do not think it strange that not only the language is similar to some Hindu languages, but that a lot of the beliefs are similar as well.
Love JPMallory and have some of his books. Colin Renfrew – you’re wrong. Indo-Europeans did NOT originate in Turkey! (pet peeve).
You are right enough about the language. One of my sisters had friends in Lithuania and spent the last part of her life there — she is buried in Kaunas. We used to talk about that stuff.
Did you know that Lithuanian is spoken in one old Jimmy Stewart movie, Call Northside 777? When Stewart, playing a newpspaper reporter, goes into a Stockyards-area backroom bar, the men around the table are talking in Lithuanian (as I recall).
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