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Some great ideas
on 5 March 2014
To Walk a pagan Path
Practical spirituality for every day
by Alaric Albertsson
A line from the back copy of this book appealed to me. It says ‘with practical tips for integrating earth-centred spirituality into every aspect of life.’ I’m not a Pagan, but I do seek a connection with nature, so I decided to give the book a go.
Chapter One offers seven steps to a new way of living including: connecting with spirit, creating a sacred space, creating sacred time, sacralize daily rituals, observing regular celebrations, observing seasonal holidays and finding your folk. Each of these steps encourages the reader to think about the sacred and the earth and suggests ways of doing this in everyday life. The chapter includes is information about the pantheons of gods and goddesses relating to different Pagan paths such as the Hellenic, Saxon and Celtic traditions. Each section also includes rituals and invocations which can be adapted to personalise them in a way that suits different paths.
Chapter Two concerns the sacred calendar and goes into depth about the celebrations suitable for different Pagan paths. There is rather a long section describing the celebrations of the Hellenic calendar but the general theme of the chapter is to live in harmony with the seasons and to celebrate in a way that shows an appreciation for nature’s tides.
Chapter Three makes suggestions for simple ways to make the sacred part of daily living. It includes simple rituals to celebrate during each day on waking, at mealtimes and so on.
Chapters Four to Eight included information about familiars, trees, growing fruit and vegetables, keeping bees and chickens, making and preserving food and Pagan crafts. There were several inspiring ideas including: how to train your dog to be quiet and calm while you complete a ritual; a nice spell for writers’ block, using a discarded bird feather; a lovely ritual for ‘bidding’ the land to encourage your plot to be fruitful and a delightful section on creating a midsummer tree, an outdoor equivalent of the yule tree. There was also useful information about making things to help with Pagan rituals such as candles and a scrying mirror,
Chapter Ten was devoted to Yule celebrations.
In some ways, this book is like many books on self sufficiency and living a greener lifestyle, but with the addition of rituals and incantations that give spiritual meaning to these activities.
While sections of this book may be irrelevant to some (bee keeping and keeping chickens), or contained knowledge that is easily available elsewhere (growing vegetables), the addition of ways to make these activities sacred is what sets this book apart.