Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Paganism and the Esoteric Traditions

I am very much interested in learning a little more about the different pagan religions and how they interact with western esotericism. That said, I do have some questions concerning all these practices that I hope will open up some interesting discussion:

1) The reconstructionist religions seem very focused on recreating whatever rituals, practices, and beliefs that existed during the time in which those practices were contemporary. These are, as Randall pointed out to me, necessarily less associated with the Western esoteric traditions, said traditions being born far later than most of the recon religions. I would ask, however, how the recon religions avoid / deal with the infusions of modern esoteric thought into translations of the works they use for their reconstructions (as I imagine Renaissance writers who translated these works or kept them / spoke at length about them were most likely influenced by esoteric thought), or if they simply welcome it and accept it as an evolution of their beliefs and practices?

2) The only exposure I have had to any sort of pagan tradition are the ceremonial magicks practiced by orders like the Rosicrucians and the Golden Dawn. From what I understand, said magicks attempt to alter the Yetziratic (or even, for more powerful mages, the Briatic) realms that the effect will resonate back into the Assyratic realm. I am aware that this interpretation of magic is heavily dependent on a hermetic / kabbalistic worldview, and I am curious as to how other magic practitioners view the way that their magic influences the material realm (or if they even view it this way at all).

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