I’ve been silent here since I started my MFA program, largely because the moũsai (muses) and my work ethic have given me little rest. But I was deeply moved to return when I came upon the stories of a modern writer. I just can’t wait to share this! Let me introduce him:
Eric Burns of Banter Latte described why and (perhaps more importantly) how we need to create our own mythology in a way that it can live in harmony with science (or at least not contradict it too badly) and reflect the world today. At risk of obscuring his message, I’ll simply quote his first article on the subject “Mythology of the Modern World: Introduction and Coffee” in its entirety below. I recommend starting there, and then checking out all of his modern myths. Also check out the comments – they’re both amusing and enlightening – he often explains his choice of names for particular gods and loci. My only regret is that he seems to have stopped writing in 2007, which leaves me both unsatisfied but also compelled to carry this on further. You can find more of his stories and essays on modern mythology in the side panel there under the Blogroll or under the Must Read! header, but I’ll probably repost my favorites here too.
When you’ve read this appeal, consider your role in modernizing mythology. What myths would you tell to explain modern mysteries? How would you retell the old myths in a way that’s relevant today? Continue reading →
I read about Kimberly Hunt’s Pagan Health Survey this on The Wild Hunt and after taking the survey, I want to encourage you, the reader, to contribute to her research. Here are her reasons why:
As both a Pagan and cultural anthropologist, I felt it was vitally important that we help policy-makers and service providers understand our needs and beliefs. This will help us to meet the health care needs of our community and build public understanding of our religious and spiritual traditions. I designed the Pagan Health Survey to help people better understand us and our views on health. The results will be combined with what I have gained by being within the Pagan community and sitting in on healing panel discussions, workshops, and so forth, as well as interviews with Pagan clergy and health care practitioners.
And here are mine:
It allows your opinions to be heard by policy-makers.
Policy is informed by research.
We want more alternative healthcare options.
It takes about five minutes.
They survey doesn’t ask for any identifying information (not even your email address).
Please take the survey here. The last question is open-ended, allowing you to submit your thoughts in a cohesive manner. Please save that answer and post it blow in the comments section. I’ll refrain from posting mine for now so as not to bias you. I’ll post it later on next week.
What do you do to prevent health problems and treat them when they arise? When it comes to your health, do you think science is in conflict with spiritual treatment? Do you think they are separate? Have you had bad (or good) experiences with MDs or spiritual healers? If you are Atheist, what do you think of spiritual healing and prayer and have you ever tried it? If you are a polytheist, in what cases would you employ western medicine? Please comment below!
They’re iconic. Stark white statues, busts, and ruins of the ancient Greeks have symbolized the purity and elegant simplicity of the ancient world to us for thousands of years. They have left an impression on our collective consciousness, appearing in countless images from Renaissance paintings to modern film and television.
Yet recent technological advancements have revealed a secret lost to the wear and tear of time.
Those classic statues were actually brightly colored in their time.
A lamp is positioned carefully enough that the path of the light is almost parallel to the surface of the object…Brush-strokes are impossible to see, but because different paints wear off at different rates, the stone is raised in some places – protected from erosion by its cap of paint – and lowered in others. Elaborate patterns become visible.
Ultraviolet is also used to discern patterns. UV light makes many organic compounds fluoresce…On ancient Greek statues, tiny fragments of pigment still left on the surface glow bright, illuminating more detailed patterns…A series of dark blues will create a very different effect than gold and pink.