Yesterday, I attended a superb lecture/presentation: “Introduction to Modern Paganism” by Cynthia Talbot and John Beckett – presented at the Denton Unitarian Universalist Fellowship. Both of them did a marvelous job in presenting the information with a nice blend between their personalities.
While a lot of the material I have heard/read/seen in various other presentations from a wide variety of presenters – I found myself seeing the material from a different perspective – and finding different patterns to older material that I had not seen previously. I’m a big believer in trying to see everything from a different vantage point in order to understand it better (thus the name of the podcast), and was pleasantly surprised at some of the notes that I had written during the presentation.
This morning – looking over those notes, I noticed a thread of thought that I had written at what was apparently the beginning of the presentation.
People started by observing natural aspects. As the world becomes more “civilized”, the natural phenomenon were anthropomorphized into the Gods and Goddesses.
I’m not sure how I cam to the idea that this statement could be a cycle of sorts – but there’s an additional note at the end of “(cycle?)” that I listed there. I know I’ve noticed a trend of Pagans moving away from usage of the Gods and Goddesses as entities and more towards an archetypal perspective. Could this suggest a potential move from the latter portion of the statement in my notes to the former? I see a possibility that this could be true. Furthermore, considering that a similar move from natural aspects to anthropomorphic stages took place in England in the late 1890s. Could it be possible that each movement is like a cycle? Or could it be more appropriately termed as the swing of a pendulum, as John suggested when I mentioned this during one of the breaks in the presentation?
Spending a little more time thinking through the overall concept – I would believe that John is a little more correct than my original assertion within my notes. Furthermore, the back and forth motion of the pendulum further suggests that there is a growth that occurs with each surged movement – just as time on a clock moves forward. I’m not going to suggest that one concept or the other is better — only that at any particular moment, one may be more precise in its usage. In my mind, both have appropriate moments of usage – it was just interesting to have this concept become suddenly linked in my head during a presentation such as this one.
And for those wondering — the presentation was absolutely fantastic. Both John and Cynthia injected their knowledge – and even more importantly to me – as well as their personalities. Not only was the material informative, but it was also fun to explore parts of my Pagan path that I haven’t stepped on in a very long time. 🙂