Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Friday, December 3, 2010

Idolatry

I have always been a lover of Sacred Stuff.  I grew up with it.

My Catholic grandmother had a shrine to the Virgin Mary in her bedroom, where she lit candles and poured offerings of rose water and left sweet pastry at the Blessed Mother's feet.

"Mother's deserve something sweet in the afternoon.  Our work is hard.  A fat Mama is a good Mama" she would say in Czech, both about the Virgin and my mother and aunts.

So naturally when I found myself dancing the Pagan path, I was happy to find that there was Sacred Stuff for us, and admittedly better stuff than the Catholics had.  Real pieces of art, and quality replicas of Old Good Things.  As an enthusiastic young Witch, I bought a lot of statuary from Sacred Source. 

Most of it, I'm sad to say, ended up just being pretty art pieces that lived on a bookshelf.  I only had real devotional practices for a handful of the Goddesses they represented, and the Male faces of the Divine were sadly absent.  Not so much from personal oversight, but there just wasn't a lot of glorious art to be had depicting the various Gods.  I'm glad to see that that's changing.

But I liked having Holy Idols around. 
I eventually gave many of these statues to others who would love them and give Them the proper devotion they deserved.  I retained a small handful that I had poured a lot of personal mana into through worship and ritual.

A Very Important Pair of Deities, whom you might rightly guess to be the Lord and Lady of Witchcraft, remain elusive as far as proper Idols are concerned.  I'm old enough that the first books I read suggested the famous Venus on a Half-shell for the Goddess and a piece of antler for the God. 

And for years I followed suit.  She was later joined by a quite randy statue of Pan, and the two look quite fetching together.  But the disconnect of Aphrodite and Pan standing in for the WitchMother and WitchFather looms large in my mind. 

I've considered more abstract symbols; antlers, shells, a mirror.  But those don't quite carry the weight of an Idol.

I've always loved the Idols, made by a man called Bel Bucca, that sat on Doreen Valiente's altar. 


I'm also completely in love with the work of Mr. Paul Borda, and may have to purchase his Seated God and Goddess statues, which are quite similar to the ones seen above.

Those of you who are Wiccan-identified, how do you represent Them on your altars?  Do you have special items, or as the old books used to say, use "any statuette of a lady and a piece of antlers"?

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