Wednesday, August 30, 2006


What is "darkness" to you? What role does it in your life, your religion, etc.? Are there some things that it's better to just leave in the darkness, or does everything ideally need to come out into the light at some point? Is there a balance required/desired between light and dark, or are some things just better suited to darkness and some to light?

Toasts as Mini-Rituals

I've been thinking lately about toasts. They're not something you usually think of as rituals/prayers/whatever, but I've run across a few that have that air about them. Like this one (my personal favorite):

quote: "Let us now save a seat, and a drink, for those who cannot be here today. They cannot be with us now, but they will join us shortly, or we will join them. To Absent Friends."

Do you have any favorite toasts? Toasts that could pass for rituals? Toasts that are rituals, in your path?

Inimical Gods?

I've noticed that many of the scarier gods of various pantheons have been redefined, reclaimed, or 'clarified'. Possibly justifiably, but it does leave kind of a void in our consciousness. Set, Mars, Scathach, the Morrigan; all have adherents (as they always did, of course) and most are viewed in a positive light by those adherents. Even Satan has worshippers ready to tell you how he has been misunderstood and miscast for centuries.

What I want to know is, are there any Big Bads left? Any gods who just plain don't like people? Who destroy not to clear a way for the new, or to teach a lesson, but just, well, because tromping things is fun? Is there a real Adversary out there whose bad side you definitely don't want to get on, and who doesn't actually have a good side?

Does Evil have a patron?

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Are Heathenry and Asatru the Same?

I did some Googling because I know nothing about them, and came across this site which states "Heathenry, also called Asatru, is the pre-Christian tribal religion and culture of the Northern European peoples known variously as the Germanic tribes, the Teutonic tribes, or the Northern Europeans." Um, hmmm.

And today I'm reading your eprimer, and it states "Asatru is the modern reconstruction of the religion of the pre-Christian Germanic peoples." Not until later down the page does it say "...for people inclined towards study and further knowledge of the magicks associated with Heathenism, there is much to explore and ponder."

So are they the same thing? And now that I'm writing all this ... I thought Thor (mentioned in the eprimer) was Norse. Where do the Norse fit into it?

Information on Hermes?

As I wrote in another thread, I've been feeling a general Thwapping at the edge of my blocks, which I'm fairly certain is of a Hermes flavour. I know there are a lot of Hermes followers on the board, and I was hoping I could get a few pointers on working with Him, as I've barely no knowledge of Him. Hecate has been unresponsive to my questions...She just has a wry grin on her face whenever I ask....which tends to get me slightly worried. I've worked with Her far too long to not know that grin! I generally don't like walking into this sort of situation blind...way too many hang ups from working with Set early on in my Craft career!

So yeah....any pointers would be greatly appreciated.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Accepting New Members?

For those with an organized path, a question about accepting new members... Does everyone who is interested get accepted as a new member? That is, is the religion (or your specific group within the religion, as applicable) pretty much open to anyone who feels it's a good fit for them? If not, what sorts of things might cause someone to be denied?

What does Your Path Invest in New Members?

What does your path invest, or share with a newly made member that would make it dangerous, or undesirable for someone for someone to join and either quit, or limp along unenthusiastically.

Aside from the obvious social stuff, how would this damage the whole or weaken the collective?

Do you think someone who was at one point a member, but is no longer might harbor grudges or agendas?

Coven of Cythrawl?

Anyone know anything about the "Coven of Cythrawl"?

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Everyday "Devotions"

I've decided I need to increase the amount of time I spend connecting to the spiritual in my everyday life and was wondering what sorts of things other people do so that I could get some ideas.

Meditation is a simple option, in whichever variation(s) of the theme I end up going with, but I feel a need of something more, erm... structured? Specific? Not sure of exactly what I need and thought the people here could help me figure something out by explaining what they do.

Message Board Back

The server that The Cauldron's message board was down for a few hours today, but it looks like Bob has it back up now. Go post.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Can Tarot Readings Be Influenced?

I am learning how to read tarot cards, and right now, am only reading them for myself, just as practice and a way to learn the cards. I am doing it about once or twice a week (which I think is way more often than you are actually supposed to) just as practice.

I have been doing this for about 2 months now, and every time that I do a reading for myself, I get the same cards, or at least cards with the same theme. It is always very relevant to something that is going on right now (and has been for several months) but ALWAYS points to the conclusion that seems pretty unlikely, but which is the one that I actually would wish for.

My question is, could I be influencing this in some way by wanting it to turn out a certain way so badly? Is it possible to do that? I know that I could be influencing my interpretations of the cards, but the ones that I keep picking are pretty self explanatory. Could I be influencing which cards I pick each time in some way?

How to Deal with Christmas?

For those of you who are still "in the closet", how do you deal with Christmas?

My family are Christian, and have always celebrated Christmas. Last year I felt like a bit of a fraud accepting Christmas presents. I sent some to my family as well, wrapped in "seasonal" paper, not Christian themed. And I sent out "Happy Holidays" cards, rather than those with specific Christmas sentiments.

I feel it's a little wrong to accept Christmas gifts when I'm not Christian. I'm unwilling to "come out of the closet" right now though.


Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Why Do You Hide Your Religious Beliefs?

I saw a thread for teens on this and its one of the things that puzzle me the most. WHY do people hide their religious beliefs. Are they afraid of persecution?

Wouldn't that require your friends and neighbors to be some kind of fascist?

I'll boil it down to two questions: Do you hide your religious beliefs and why?

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

The Value of Discipline?

What value would you put on discipline in magic? There are so many types, from free-flowing, 'whatever feels right' magic, to systems with rules and correspondences up the wazoo. Do you find a difference in terms of effectiveness in these methods?

To clarify - if you had an important goal, would you take the time to collect your ingredients in the dead of night, with a silver knife, while naked, etc., or would you dash off a spell using whatever you had in your kitchen, substituting as necessary, telling a while candle it was really black now, and trusting to your focus and intent to carry it off. Is 'proper form' an unecessary frill, or does a spell have more 'oomph' when done elegantly and according to form?

The comparison that comes to my mind is in poetry. Free verse and poetic pose are both evocative, and, done properly, beautiful. They don't seem to require the discipline that iambic pentameter or haiku forms do, where there seems to be a sense of accomplishment in finding the perfect word with the right emphasis or number of syllables. Is there a value distinction between them? Would you choose one form over another according to the 'importance' of the occasion?

I've seen advice on here to 'do what feels right and it will work'. I've also seen some very specific debates about academic rigour. Is cutting the formality out of a CM ritual and adjusting it to your tastes a matter of freeing yourself of the limitations of form, or is it a matter of being unwilling to tackle the difficulties of discipline.

I go back and forth on this myself, both in magic and in poetry, but it always seems that the more important or more difficult a task, the more I go for the formal and disciplined. A word that takes a week to find, and is perfect, seems to acquire value just from the sense of achievement in finding it. Similarly, a spell done to rigourous and demanding standards seems stronger somehow.


Article: The Chaos Magic 'Primer'

Chaos magic is one of the more obscure Western occult traditions, in that not every occultist has even heard of it, and many of those don't necessarily understand what chaos magic means to its practitioners. However, it might more truthfully be said that chaos magic does not comprise a tradition, but a point of view - or even as a way of processing points of views. Peter Carroll, who essentially founded Chaos Magic suggests that the theory is a meta-paradigm. I will return to paradigms later.

Offerings for Aphrodite?

I, in my own way, have felt a certain push inside my head to look up everything I can find on Aphrodite. From the Internet, Half Price Books, actual non-fiction books about the worship of and different facets of her as a goddess. In every thing I have read I have still not found a good basis for ritual or offerings. Maybe I am not being creative enough. When I try to pin it down in my head, I think about mirrors. And that is usually as far as I have gotten. Maybe some dancing.

My question is for all of you who have personal deities that you make offerings to: How did you come up with your methods? Was it instinctual? Straight recon? Something else?

I can't figure out how to make a mirror an offering. Does anyone have any ideas or suggestions? I feel like I am right on top of something but can't find it. Could I be overthinking? When I dance, I dance in front of mirrors. Maybe by dedicating it to her, that would be an offering of sorts?

It seems like not a lot of people have a lot to do with Aphrodite. Other than the obvious, love, attraction, etc. To me it's so much more and in depth. Is there a tradition somewhere that focuses on her as a deity?

Monday, August 21, 2006

Religious Censorship?

The statement of "shouldn't he be censored or something" about the Bob Larson thread got me to wondering .. are there any religious expressions you think SHOULD be censored? Are there things that shouldn't be said?

What would you do if part of your own religion was censored? Would you still say it? In public or in private? Why?

Where Do You Want Your Rituals?

So I've been thinking on and off about ritual, the purpose of ritual, that sort of thing. One of the essentials of ritual work, in my mind, has been recognising universal human transition points -- those things that are big and scary to do on one's own, but with ritual one has other people to support the transition, and also through the shared ritual the thing is universalised and thus made a part of cyclical time (even if the people in the ritual only do it once themselves).

I think pretty much all religions have something for birth and death. I know Catholicism has seven big sacraments (though I could only name, like, four) in this mode. Various religions have other things that they consider important to mark ritually -- I've seen Wiccans talk about things like croning ceremonies to mark a life-stage transition, for example.

What life moments does your religion ritualise?

What sorts of things do you want this sort of ritual support for, but find lacking in your religion?

What sorts of things does your religion not recognise with ritual that other people might find surprising? (I, for example, don't have a religious marriage ceremony or the beliefs to support one.)

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Those Moments Which Define Us

Have you ever had doubts? What we choose to believe is considered, by the mainstream to be at best, weird, at worst heretical.

Have you ever had a defining moment in which you knew that what you were doing was right, what you believed was true... that in fact you WERE in the right place?

Kalevala and Finnish Magic

I'm just curious if anyone in here has ever read Kalevala (the Finnish national epic)?
It tells about the ancient Finnish lives, beliefs, gods, nymphs, elves etc... The book was written in 19th century but the stories in it are lot older.

As a Finn, I have of course read it. I had to read it. And I was just wondering if anyone else in here has read it and I would sure like to hear opinions about it!

Then how about Finnish magic, Shamanism. etc.? I'm just interested of hearing opinions, experiences etc.

Danger Religious Faker

If someone claimed to be a member of your OWN religion, what would you regard as being the "danger signs" and why.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Finding a Teacher?

I am not entirely new to paganism, but as I grow older I feel greater and greater need for a mentor/teacher. Everything I've learned so far was basically from books (and also through extensive "googling"). I imagine that is the case with most solitaires.

I would like to hear from others what do they think are the good and the bad things about being a solitary, from your experience.

Also, what would be the way to find a teacher/mentor (preferably Wiccan)? I know that's supposed to be difficult, but there's gotta be a way, right?

What Does It Take to be a Member of Your Religion?

What does a member of your religion/spiritual group have to have/believe to be considered an actual member? Do you have to be a hard polytheist? Do you have to use magic? Basically, what makes a person Wiccan, or Asatru, or whatever? What are the unifying threads?

Automatic Writing?

Has anyone tried automatic writing? And for those who have: If one was to go about it, what method would you recommend? Do you have any tips or advise any special considerations that should be taken into account?

Also, on a related note: What do you feel that you are picking up or communicating with? Spirits, Universal Energy, Ghosts, Psychic Impressions, Gods, Angels, Fluffy Pink Unicorns etc?? (you get the idea).

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Philosophical Reading?

I have a friend who's looking for suggestions on reading about philosophy, nothing specific, just in general, and, since I can't make any suggestions to her, I figured this might be the place to ask.

So, what would you suggest?

Druid Beliefs?

What exactly is druidry? I thought I knew but I was told I was wrong, and now I'm not quite sure. I always believed that they just just believed in the Tutha De Dannan for deities. Do they believe in deities at all? Do they believe in other deities from different cultures?

Historically did they celebrate all 8 sabbats or just a few of them? I have read many things that are contradicting.

What about elements? Is it land sea and sky? Or earth fire water and air? (sounds like something adopted over time to fit in more with other pagan beliefs. But I don't know.)

Did they use the pentacle as a symbol or was that added in modern times? (I have never seen evidence of it being used in the past.)

What ritual tools did they use? (I know they used runes and some type of a wand or staff and things like herbs and stones) did they use cauldrons? Their is the story of Dogda and his cauldron so I think its safe to assume they did I think?

Poll: Are You a Hellenic Polytheist?

Last year a group of Cauldronites got together and decided to found Ta Hiera, an organization for Hellenic polytheists. For various reasons the project never really got off the ground, but we have discussed it again and decided that we want to start a forum at least. This forum would be hosted on the same server as TC, and have basically the same rules, so I'm thinking that it's something that some of you may want to participate in. (It would be open to all Hellenic polytheists, but probably have a fairly strong Recon focus.) However, I have no clue how many of us there are at TC, so if you are a Hellenic polytheist of some variety, please vote in this poll - or better yet, post a little about yourself and your beliefs in this thread.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Animal Encounters: Coincidence or Significant?

For the past week or so I've been wondering how you can tell if an encounter with an animal is an indication of the spirits communicating with you, or merely an ordinary encounter with an animal.

So: any thoughts that could help clarify the matter for me?

Monday, August 14, 2006

Is Your Non-Pagan Other Half Supportive?

Obviously this is to all of us who live with Non-pagan partners...

I was really daunted when I first got together with my fiance. I'd dated a few non-pagans shortly after I came out of the 'Broom' Closet and we had a few issues come up because of my faith.

I need not have worried about it though. K has been so completely understanding and supportive about my faith, despite the fact that she has no interest in gods of any kind herself.

As I've mentioned previously on this board, when we first got engaged, she did some research for our wedding and found a pagan priestess who would perform our marriage ceremony and obfuscate it just enough to make it so the christians in the audience wouldn't notice, which I think was soooo totally sweet of her. (Even though we've ended up just going with a Justice Of The Peace (Non denominational wedding) because of cost issues)

She also bought me the most beautiful chest to keep my working tools in when I'm not actively using them (it doubles as an alter as well) for my birthday.

She even recently picked me up and gave me the kick in my butt that I needed when she knew I was avoiding talking with Hecate (I made a promise I didn't quite keep...still smoking.) I talked things over with Hecate and we made a deal that I would cut down, and quit after the wedding.

I was curious to know if those of you with Non-pagan partners have been as lucky as I have with my wonderful K? If not, what sort of problems have you come across?

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Looking for Good Pagan/Wiccan Magazines?

I've been wanting to subscribe to a pagan/wiccan magazine for some time now. Can anyone recommend one? I did some web search, but it's difficult to make a good choice that way.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Weirdest Tradition in Your Path?

Reading the Moving, moving, moving thread gave me the idea for this thread...(the reference to burying a statue of St Joseph upside down):

What is the strangest tradition in your religious path?

It doesn't have to be an *absolutely-written-in-stone* ritual moment, or anything you are oathbound not to disclose.
Just any weirdly things folks in your path do...even if you don't know why...

I know we have a lot of folks here that have *personal* paths they have created or that have *evolved* with their beliefs as well, so have any of you started a tradition that may not make sense to an observer, but makes perfect sense to you?

Friday, August 11, 2006

Irritating Songs and Meditation

It seems like whenever I try to meditate, at some point or another, I'll get a song stuck in my head. Now, I've only recently begun to meditate seriously, but I'm getting very frustrated. I've tried mentally "typing out" each word of whatever song it is, writing the words on a mental chalk board, but no matter what I do, the same song won't get out of my head, or it'll be beaten down into submission for a couple of minutes, only to surface again later. >8[

This is incredibly irritating, as it's keeping me from going into deeper state of meditation. That, and the songs that generally get stuck in my head are stupid ones, like "Peanut Butter Jelly Time", "Mary had a Little Lamb", and, fate forbid, "American Idiot". How can I get these travesties out of my head, and/or keep them from getting in there in the first place?

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Deity Free and Happy To Be?

Personally I do not work with deities. Of any kind. I do not invoke. I do not evoke. I do not pray, worship, beseech, honor etc. It's just not the right fit for me.

I'm curious to hear from others who also have chosen to walk a deity free path.

What led you to choose this?

Do you believe that deities do or may exist but choose not to treat with them, or do you disbelieve in their existence all together?

If you do magick do you feel that being without deities has helped or hindered your growth as a magick worker?

If you are someone who used to be deity-less but have come to work with a deity or pantheon what led you to change your mind?

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Looking for Reliable Information on Runes

I'm looking for anyone who can point me towards good (as in useful, not impossibly dense but still academically accurate) information on the runic system of divination.

I've been interested in using the runes for divination for a while and I found a bunch of small pieces of finished wood I think would make a good set (I was planning on wood burning the runes onto them).

However I don't know much about the runes or how to use them, though I've heard there's a lot of bogus information out there. I'm looking for a website or book that could give me a decent background in the history, meaning, and use of the runes. Since I'll be putting a fair amount of work into making this I'd like to be sure I'm doing it right.

So, does anyone have any suggestions of resources they liked? Any help would be much appreciated!

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Art and Neopaganism?

I'm just finishing college as an Art History major and I'm writing my thesis on Contemporary Neopagan Art and Neopagan Interest in Art History (title in progress). I've been a Pagan/Neopagan for four years now but I have relatively little contact with the rest of the Neopagan community.

So what I need to ask is: How do you, as a Pagan/Neopagan/Witch interact with Art History and Contemporary Art? Who are your favorite Neopagan artists? Do you make your own religious/spiritual art? Do you use images from Art History in your altar(s) or shrine(s)? Do you feel that there is a Contemporary Neopagan Art movement that can be studied?

Any answers would help me tremendously because I can only use my own knowledge and experiences up to a certain point. I don't want to pretend I can speak for the whole community without asking some other real people.

Scientific concepts in Divinition?

This could sound a little strange, but I was meditating over the meaning of some of my Tarot cards (something I'm tryig to do more often), when I came across the Sun card- at first I thought of standard things like hot tempers, taking a period to enjoy yourself (like Summer Holidays), but I got thinking about the Sun itself- how it fuses Hydrogen into Helium, and got thinking if that concept, fusion, might apply to the meaning card my question is, can you use Scientific concepts when looking over the meanings of the cards in Tarot, or in any other form of Divinition?

On The Fringes?

So, recently on a religious mailing list I read, a discussion got started along the lines of "Is [this non-mainstream non-religious practice] compatible with this religion?" And discussion ensued, some of it heated. (Specific thing elided because it's not relevant to a more general question. And I don't want to fight about it again just yet.)

But it left me with a sort of question to contemplate. I've seen people doing a lot of religious work, even to the point of changing religions, over things that were important to religious practice, but I haven't seen as much about things that are less central/essential to religious practice, where it's a matter of philosophical perspective about what works.

There's a lot of stuff that many religions won't have specific teachings on: circumstances under which one can use magic, say; what jobs are good ones for people to have; how to take care of one's front yard; what sort of sex is acceptable to have; how to prioritise work, family, self, play, and so on. And in bunches of those cases, people will do some weird stuff, and other people will say, "Nobody who does this particular weird stuff is doing the religion right. They just don't go together."

So how many other weirdos are there on the fringes? Do you feel you have to keep your strange stuff separate from religious discussions? Have you gotten support from your religious community for your strange habits, or hostility? Is the stuff that isn't intrinsically a religious practice actually part of your faith in the way you actually do it?

Monday, August 07, 2006

Significators in Tarot

Back when I was first learning Tarot, my teacher made a big deal about using significators. I thought at the time that it was a great way to get used to the court cards, gender, age, child-bearing/having status, hair and skin colour, etc. I even tried to learn the astrological attributes of each one. With sixteen options to choose from, I could usually come up with a significator for anyone I read for. Add in the people who use Major Arcana for significators, and you have a whole population right there in your hands.

I found over the years, however, that I dropped the practice. Oh, I will occasionally use a significator for a situation, if I really want to focus strongly and narrowly on that sitch, and sometimes if the first card out is a court card I find it significant, but in general I just don't use them anymore.

For regular (and irregular) tarot card users: how important is the concept of a significator card. Do you use one consistently, in special circumstances, by chance, or not at all? How do you find it affects the reading - it's focus, it's accuracy, etc.

Enquiring minds want to know!

Spells and Crime

Okay, I'm not talking about the morality (or lack thereof) of crime itself. If you can't imagine a situation where you yourself would actually plan to commit a crime treat it as a theoretical approach for a novel or a fantasy world where the moral question isn't applicable.

What spells do you know of, or have you performed for other reasons, that you think would be useful in committing a crime.

For example - I've used a small don't-notice-me type spell to get through crowds quickly. This could conceivably be applied to getting past a security guard during a B and E, or staying behind as a store was closing. I'm sure there are other basically innocent spells that could be applied to crime, if one had the will and the skill.

What do you think?

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Eclectic a Four-Letter Word?

Ever feel like "eclectic" is sometimes recieved as a four letter word? I'm thinking on this because I realized how much I've been avoiding the word over the last year and a half or so. Seems like the immediate thoughts that come to mind, for me, is that of picking and choosing little bits and mixing up a religious Smoothie. Even though my path IS an eclectic one.

Sometimes it feels like I won't be taken seriously by someone I'm talking to if I say eclectic, or others when someone I meet (say in a Witchy store or viewing a new online community) replies with an exclamation of "YEAH me too, I blend Buddhism, Sihk, Gnostic, Wicca, ______, ______," etc. Then its me mentally groaning. So from not wanting to be associated with such a way of thinking, I tend to omit the word alltogether. It's like "eclectic' means "Oh, well the beauty of being Pagan is that I can believe however I want!" and getting out the blender.

Am I just building up an issue in my own mind and making myself crazy by overanalyzing or do others feel similarly? I am asking because its either a thing others notice too, or I'm being a bitch and should be trying to correct the attitude towards the word.

Benefits of Memorization?

Many religions (Pagan and otherwise) require a certain amount of memorization. For example, many times people are expected to memorize prayers or scripture portions. It is common for covens to require memorizing ritual or BOS portions.

What possible benefits do you see with this practice? What are some possible drawbacks?

Friday, August 04, 2006

Organizing your Eclectic Thoughts

1) Do your dieties all come from one pantheon or are you a mixer? Or do you not see specific dieities but instead monotheism, dualism, or another -ism?

2) Do you feel the need for ritual or offerings of some kind, or do you interact purely on a non-physical level (within the mind/soul)?

3) Do you feel like you need to do rituals/offerings/honorings based on: information you find academically, historical accuracy if available(A need to "do it right"), sporadic feelings, or based on what feels right vs what someone/thing might suggest is right?

4) How important is magick in your life? If not important, skip to question 6.

5) Are you fairly rigid about what you use in magick, correspondences, dates/times/position of the sun/moon/planets, and/or what you will or will not use magick for?

6) Do you study any specific cultures? (Norse, Greek, Egpyt, Celt, etc) Do you prefer an influence of these cultures on your life, or a more reconstructionist approach towards the living your life in accordance to the cultures?

7) Do you have any specific idea about "afterlife"? Do any concepts like karma play a part in that?

8) Are there any labels you apply to your path? After reviewing the above do you feel they are accurate?

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Do Some Paths Glamourize Immaturity?

I've been tossing this around in my head for a couple days.

There are a couple paths, Feri being the one I'm mostly thinking of that really focuses on the power and allure of the child self.

Nimue in particular, seems to be perceived as sexually viable, and in some ways outwardly more physical than the Star Goddess who moves in almost macrocosmic aloofness. The uncontroled fey nature of the ever alluring woman/child is carried by a child. In thinking more about this, I wonder if this is a good thing.

It sort of infantalizes a womans power, and stunts it. Locks you in a geisha like existance, dependant upon the notice of other more grounded people. Makes it seem like in order to retain your charge, you need to maintain a state of unknowing.

It's hard enough for women to accept the passage of stages of life in a world that already fixates on youth. It's hard enough to accept and use your own personal power. Is it healthy to elevate a state of being that can't really be maintained?

I've always had a sort of kinship with Nimue, but recently have really seen how it holds me back. Prevents me from seeing power and direction as attractive. I find that eperiences in child self state, while the energy is thrilling, it's also scattered and pretty random. I guess what I'm finding is a need for a more consistant energy.

I'm also thinking that coming into that energy means taking a deliberate step away from archetypes that glamourize the childlike. Rather than working to be closer to a feral nature, focusing more on clear sight and self actualization. Tearing off the gossamer wings, throwing down the veil and just flat out not playing endless peekaboo with fairies.

Lucid Dreaming

o I've been surfing the net lately, looking at lucid dreaming forums and techniques, products and what-not. I'm wondering what people here think about lucid dreaming in general, in specific, the different methods and techniques, etc.

For those of you who don't know, lucid dreaming is being aware while you're dreaming, thus being able to change outcomes and such in your dreams.

What do people think of the things like pills and herbs to help induce lucid dreaming? What about technology like dream masks (besides the price)?

Has anyone experienced regular lucid dreams without any "help" from the sources online?

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Prayer: What Do You Say When You Aren't Asking for Something?

As some of you may know I have recently started a small shrine to Ganesh due to a nudge and following events. However, I have a big question regarding shrines and worship.

If I am not asking Lord Ganesh for something but I still want to honor him at my little shrine what do I say? Hi, how are you? Right now I have been bringing in fresh wildflowers and changing them out as needed and occasionally lighting a candle. I put my hands together at my breastbone, elbows out and bow to his figurine without really mentally verbalizing anything. But it definately seems like something is missing from that.

My question is what do you say when you aren't actually praying for something? If you are just honoring them?

Nightmares: A Research Thread

I'm writing a short revolving around dreaming and nightmares, and I'd like to ask a few questions.

1. What is the worst nightmare you've ever had?
2. How did you feel when you woke up from this dream?
3. To that end, did you wake up immediately (and if so, how? ie, were you jerked awake?) or did you remember the dream later?

Anything else you could add about your experience would be helpful.

Highest Religious Priority

What is it that your religion calls you to do most of all? Is it service? Worship? Action?

What is the one thing that if you don't do it, you feel you're not being a good (whatever)? (this can either be what the religion calls everyone to do, or a personal calling).

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