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Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Research Project

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ALLSOULS NIGHT
LORD OF THE DANCE (PAGAN)
O, SAVE US FROM FAUX PAGANS (Or, Observations at a Renaissance Faire)


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13 Apr 98 - 07:48 PM
Helen 14 Apr 98 - 08:15 PM
Bruce O. 14 Apr 98 - 09:59 PM
Joe Offer 14 Apr 98 - 11:24 PM
Jon W. 15 Apr 98 - 10:07 AM
Barbara 16 Apr 98 - 02:08 PM
Bill in Alabama 16 Apr 98 - 04:16 PM
Helen 16 Apr 98 - 06:27 PM
17 Apr 98 - 12:42 PM
17 Apr 98 - 01:31 PM
Bert 17 Apr 98 - 02:15 PM
T. in Oklahoma 17 Apr 98 - 03:08 PM
JB 18 Apr 98 - 03:10 AM
Susan of DT 18 Apr 98 - 04:36 AM
T. in Oklahoma 20 Apr 98 - 10:30 AM
Bruce O. 20 Apr 98 - 08:43 PM
steve t 21 Apr 98 - 09:40 AM
T. in Oklahoma 21 Apr 98 - 11:59 AM
Bruce O. 21 Apr 98 - 01:06 PM
Helen 21 Apr 98 - 07:41 PM
Bruce O. 21 Apr 98 - 08:02 PM
JB 22 Apr 98 - 03:39 AM
T. in Oklahoma 22 Apr 98 - 02:48 PM
Corinna of California 22 Apr 98 - 06:03 PM
T. in Oklahoma 23 Apr 98 - 05:04 PM
Bruce O. 23 Apr 98 - 05:20 PM
Earl 24 Apr 98 - 09:51 AM
Bill in Alabama 24 Apr 98 - 10:08 AM
T. in Oklahoma 24 Apr 98 - 03:32 PM
T in Oklahoma (a.k.a. Okiemockbird) 05 Oct 99 - 10:04 AM
katlaughing 05 Oct 99 - 10:32 AM
T in Oklahoma (a.k.a. Okiemockbird) 05 Oct 99 - 11:12 AM
T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird) 06 Oct 99 - 10:32 AM
Neil Lowe 06 Oct 99 - 10:58 AM
Art Thieme 06 Oct 99 - 11:17 AM
T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird) 07 Oct 99 - 11:12 AM
MMario 07 Oct 99 - 11:15 AM
T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird) 08 Oct 99 - 10:46 AM
Penny S. 09 Oct 99 - 02:12 PM
Art Thieme 10 Oct 99 - 11:36 AM
j0_77 10 Oct 99 - 06:17 PM
katlaughing 10 Oct 99 - 06:53 PM
MAG (inactive) 10 Oct 99 - 08:19 PM
Art Thieme 11 Oct 99 - 01:30 AM
philip 11 Oct 99 - 06:05 PM
Jeff Kalmar 11 Oct 99 - 07:50 PM
T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird) 11 Oct 99 - 11:45 PM
paddymac 12 Oct 99 - 11:41 AM
Penny S. 12 Oct 99 - 12:56 PM
Bert 12 Oct 99 - 01:35 PM
MAG (inactive) 12 Oct 99 - 07:42 PM
T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird) 12 Oct 99 - 08:59 PM
Art Thieme 12 Oct 99 - 09:09 PM
katlaughing 12 Oct 99 - 11:03 PM
Art Thieme 13 Oct 99 - 12:37 PM
M. Ted (inactive) 13 Oct 99 - 12:42 PM
MAG (inactive) 13 Oct 99 - 12:53 PM
T in Oklahoma (a.k.a. Okiemockbird) 13 Oct 99 - 01:04 PM
M. Ted (inactive) 13 Oct 99 - 01:30 PM
MAG (inactive) 13 Oct 99 - 05:59 PM
j0_77 13 Oct 99 - 07:02 PM
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M. Ted (inactive) 14 Oct 99 - 01:42 PM
T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird) 14 Oct 99 - 02:19 PM
j0_77 14 Oct 99 - 03:30 PM
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Subject: Pagan/Folk/Magical/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From:
Date: 13 Apr 98 - 07:48 PM

Pagan/Folk/Magical and Earth religeons have a primarily oral tradition. My research project is designed to shed new light on these virtually unwritted traditions (only modern renditions of these ancient beliefs are available in written form) by attempting to track down music, lyrics, and tunes associated with these practices and beliefs. It's been a fruitless search. I found one book that may shed some light if I can obtain a copy of it. No web sites I have found are helpful, no books, music stores, or musicians. If anybody can offer assistance, I'd be super grateful.

Sincerely yours, MudPuppy.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Helen
Date: 14 Apr 98 - 08:15 PM

Hi MudPuppy,

This is an interesting research project. I wish you well in it, and I think you have hit on a good idea searching for songs handed down in the folk tradtion, although you would need to make allowances for the changes that different singers may have made as they learned the song and handed it on. Social and especially religious influences would have affected the renditions so you may get some false leads which actually date back to a later time than the pagan times you are interested in.

I'd suggest finding a copy of the Child Ballads, which are in at least 12 very large volumes, if my memory serves me correctly, and they contain lots of variants on each tune. There are sites on the net with Child ballads if you do a search. Child was a folksong collector. There might even be a link listed on the Mudcat Links page.

Also Morris Dance tunes might be a useful source because the dances were reputedly performed for religious reasons, e.g. fertility or encouraging the growth of crops, or something like that. Someone else on the list will know more about that than me.

Also, you could use the blue Search box, top right hand corner of these pages, to search for pagan themes, e.g. oak treas, rowan trees, etc etc to see if any songs show up with the types of themes you are looking for. You put phrases in square brackets e.g. [oak tree]

Good luck, and pleas keep us posted if you find out anything interesting.

Helen


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Bruce O.
Date: 14 Apr 98 - 09:59 PM

Child's ballads were published in 5 volumes. So far no one has found any mention by Child that he ever heard a ballad sung. He was not a field collector of folksongs. His work is an anthology of songs collected by others.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Joe Offer
Date: 14 Apr 98 - 11:24 PM

I found lots of Child ballads here by entering [Child #*] into the search box in the upper-right corner of this page. Trouble is, more than just Child ballads showed up. What's the correct way to do a database search for just Child ballads?
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Jon W.
Date: 15 Apr 98 - 10:07 AM

Here's a link to a thread that discusses the song Hal an Tow, which apparently has some pagan/fertility connections.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Barbara
Date: 16 Apr 98 - 02:08 PM

I would try early/old english poetry, Oxford book of Carols, and does this data base sort for old songs? I know a number of english country songs that sound very pagan indeed. Often Christianity has been brushed very lightly over the surface. Try the Fuzzy Day Carol, I think that's right, in the Oxford Book. or Rosebud in June, or songs of Watersons and Young Tradition. Or search John Barleycorn. Or what about researching Carl Orff's Carmina Burana? It's a whole choral piece [opera?] of early (1400-1500, I think) secular songs, including a lovely one about the wheel. Find out where *he* found the material. BB Barbara


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Bill in Alabama
Date: 16 Apr 98 - 04:16 PM

Mudpuppy: You might want to check some of the material at the Camelot Project site: [http://rodent.lib.rochester.edu/camelot/cphome.stm]. This will lead you to sites which are primarily concerned with the Arthurian Legends cycle, but some of the leading scholars in Celtic Britain have entries in various bibliographies here, and you just might run across some pre-Christian rituals and shamanistic practices which are peripheral to Arthuriana. Check some British/Irish/Scottish folklore sources on the St. George Play and other similar quasi-dramatic pieces. These are generally thought to be evolutionary manifestations of pre-Christian rituals associated with Affective Magic. Good luck in your search. Bill Foster [Bill in Alabama]


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Helen
Date: 16 Apr 98 - 06:27 PM

Hi all

Barbara, I think it's Furry Day Carol, but I don't know the lyrics. And, I don't know whether you specifically meant Anglo Saxon when you referred to "old English" poetry. I think that any Old English/Anglo Saxon (i.e. Germanic-related) poetry is more likely to have Christian than pagan themes, but there are some throwbacks to pre-Christian beliefs hidden in there. Beowulf springs to mind, i.e. the "monster from the deep lagoon" type of stories, but I think that pre-Anglo-Saxon or Celtic themes would have more interesting stuff in them for researching pagan beliefs.

Are there any songs about The Green Man? I seem to remember hearing one, maybe in relation to a very strange television drama series of the same name at least a decade ago.

Also, the Mabinogion is one written source of Welsh folk stories. There might be something worth looking at in there. I don't know exactly when the Mabinogion was written down, so there may be later social and cultural influences in it as well.

Helen


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From:
Date: 17 Apr 98 - 12:42 PM


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From:
Date: 17 Apr 98 - 01:31 PM

Besides recommending the works of Ronald Hutton, I wish to point out the error in the notion that the only written sources for paganism are modern. The poems of Hesiod, the hymns of the RigVeda, the votive inscriptions of the Romans, the speculations of the stoics and neoplatonists, should be considered, at least in the first analysis, equally as 'pagan' as, say, the unwritten lore of the druids or the of the mask societies of the Senecas and Onondogas.

Be very cautious of assuming great antiquity for any music or dance that was not documented until modern times. The only western European music which can be said to have passed down from the low middle ages with only minor changes is ecclesiastical chant. I would doubt that any still-practiced folk-dance's choreography was more than a few hundred years old, unless you want to define the choreography in broad general terms. Dancing in a ring is indeed a very old practice, but any specific ring dance that is still danced is probably nowhere near as old.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Bert
Date: 17 Apr 98 - 02:15 PM

The problem with old music is that there was no way of writing it down.

But I don't see why Church music should not be at least as old as church ritual some of which is very clearly of pagan origin.

Hi there dancer! Who are you? I used to do English Folk Dancing years ago. A lot of the music sounded to me to have Arabic origins.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: T. in Oklahoma
Date: 17 Apr 98 - 03:08 PM

Bert: To assert pagan origins of church ritual is misleading or false unless you make some careful distinctions.

No Christian rite of baptism or the Eucharist known to me has any elements that are clearly "pagan" in any religious sense. The rites as we have them were developed, it's true, partly by converted ex-pagans who brought a number of presuppositions with them to their new religion. But the documentable religious influences are mainly Jewish as far as I can tell. Eucharistic theology may have been influenced by pagan analogies, and eucharistic practice then indirectly, through the theology. But before one could assert that for certain, one would have to examine animal sacrifice as practised throughout the ancient Mediterranean world and see if the Jewish and Pagan outlooks on it were far different. Only then might one be able to distinguish pagan from Jewish influences in the sacrificial component of eucharistic theology.

Certain incidental ritual practices in Christian worship, such as the use of lights and incense, can probably be said to have been influenced by pagan presuppositions.

One must also distinguish origins, external influences, and internal development. Certain calendar customs practiced by Christians may have had their origin in pagan customs, but that does not mean that they were continued unchanged. In their Christian form, I would guess, some customs which had evolved from earlier times continued to evolve, and in ways they might not have evolved in a pagan society. Many Christians hang their churches with greens at their midwinter festival. This practice might (or might not) have its origins in a pagan practice. I would be cautious, without documentation, in assuming the practice had pagan origins at all, and I would be cautious about making assumptions about what the original practice was.

One pagan practice of demonstrable antiquity which continues to be used with little change is the practice of throwing coins into fountains and wells. This custom is practiced now by some Christians as it was centuries ago by pagans. But it has never been incorporated into church ritual in any way.

So it's possible for old practices to continue with little change, old practices to evolve into new practices, and for new practices superficially resembling old practices to be arrived at independently. All these possibilities have to be considered by the originator of this thread and anyone else who is interested in the history of music, dance, or the western religous mind.

To the thread's originator (and any other interested party): Two additional Ronald Hutton works are "Stations of the Sun" and "The Rise and Fall of Merrie England."


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: JB
Date: 18 Apr 98 - 03:10 AM

There is a fascinating book by Lowry Charles Wimberly, called "Folklore in the English and Scottish Ballads" with the subtitle: "Ghosts, Magic, Witches, Fairies, and the Otherworld". Originally published by Dover, I think it may be out of print. His book is based on Child's research.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Susan of DT
Date: 18 Apr 98 - 04:36 AM

Of the Child ballads, see particularly numbers 1,2,3,4,5,6,10,17,18,19,20,29,30,31,32,33,34,35,36,37,38, 39,43,44,45,46,77,78,79,113,243,278
You can look for these in the database with the #sign followed by the number.

Penguin has published a large number of reprints of very old sources including old myths, sagas, and Arthurian material. I assume you have read the Golden Bough. There are several Arthurian websites:
http://dc.smu.edu/Arthuriana/
http://www.georgetown,edu/labyrinth/subjects/arthurian/arthur.html

other sites:
http://www.geocities.com/Athens/Forum/5387/

For tunes to the Child Ballads, the reference is Bertrand H. Bronson, Traditional Tunes of the Child Ballads, multivolume and out of print, but available in some libraries.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: T. in Oklahoma
Date: 20 Apr 98 - 10:30 AM

The Child ballads are a false lead. They have no direct connection with practicing polytheists.

I advise the founder of the thread to re-examine the presuppositions on which the inquiry rests. What is meant by "pagan" "magical" "folk" or "Earth" religions? And why should these be considered to have "primarily oral tradition?" Counterexamples spring easily to mind. The Brahmins of India are both "pagan" and literate. Much brahmanical lore is now passed down in books. On the other hand, the literate phase of brahmanism may be a late development. Would MudPuppy consider the Brahmans to have been "pagan" before the Vedas were written down, and "non-pagan" afterward?

Again I encourage MudPuppy to consult the works of Ronald Hutton. Carlo Ginzberg's works may be useful, but I can't say for certain because I have not yet read any of them. From what I know, he is a careful scholar but his work is difficult. I also encourage MudPuppy to AVOID the following authors: Sir James Frazer, Marija Gimbutas, Robert Graves, and Margaret Murray.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Bruce O.
Date: 20 Apr 98 - 08:43 PM

Margaret Murray tried to translate her expertise on Egyptology to witchcraft, and failed miserably, although it took a long time to disprove much of her conjecture. Frazier's works has been reedited to bring it up to more in line with modern anthropological thought. The other's I don't know.

What's wanted here, real scholarship, or more psuedo pagan -witchcraft stuff. I suspect we'll soon see some more of Isoble Gowdie's poetical hexes. Michael Robinson commented on her is some detail on the Scots-L list about two months ago (I brought her up on a witchcraft thread and that started things going on her. Someone thought they might be a relative since Gowdie and Goldie are the same in Scots. It'd been 20 years since I studied witchcraft, and don't remember much.)


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: steve t
Date: 21 Apr 98 - 09:40 AM

I can't stop myself:

TTTO: Give me that old time religion

We will pray with those old druids
They drink fermented fluids
Dancing naked through the woo-ids
And that's good enough for me

Ahhh...there. I feel better.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: T. in Oklahoma
Date: 21 Apr 98 - 11:59 AM

Exhaustive refutation of the Murray thesis is fairly recent, but Margaret Murray's thesis was criticized from the very beginning. I don't know if any of her contemporary colleagues accepted it.

Marija Gimbutas is an archaeologist specializing in the period ca. 5000-3000 B.C. Her technical archaeological work may be valuable, but its value for the ordinary reader is marred by her insistence on interpreting her finds tendentiously in terms of a peaceful, matriarchal, goddess-worshipping pre-Indo-European civilization. Other archaeologists familiar with the data find that it supports no such interpretation.

Robert Graves was a poet who popularized the Murray thesis in his book on poetic inspiration, "The White Goddess."

It goes without saying that, for someone interested in historical facts, an author equally to be avoided as the other four is Gerald Gardner, who took the Murray thesis and invented a new religion from it.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Bruce O.
Date: 21 Apr 98 - 01:06 PM

Without bother to check, I'll bet there's a version of WOAD in DT.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Helen
Date: 21 Apr 98 - 07:41 PM

Thanks, Steve T.

Helen


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Bruce O.
Date: 21 Apr 98 - 08:02 PM

Wimberley's book was first published in 1928. I don't know who published it. My reprint edition is of 1959. I don't know when Dover reprinted it.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: JB
Date: 22 Apr 98 - 03:39 AM

You're right, Bruce O. The original publication was by the University of Chicago Press in 1928. My copy of Wimberly's book is a Dover edition from 1965.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: T. in Oklahoma
Date: 22 Apr 98 - 02:48 PM

Further advice for MudPuppy:

Another author to avoid is Violet Alford.

Like the ballads, Morris and Sword dances are a false lead. They have no direct connection to practicing polytheists. It's true that the Roman Salii were a ritual dance society which performed their 'leaping' dance in the streets of Rome every March and October, but so far as I know no connection has ever been demonstrated or even alleged between the Roman Salii and the English Morris.

The Abbot's Bromley Horn Dance is basically a Morris dance with reindeer antlers. Like all other Morris dances, it's probably no older than the late middle ages, if even that old. The antlers themselves are thought to be 10th-11th century, but this doesn't mean the dance itself is that old. The antlers are an interesting feature, though.

I suspect that a good way to study unwritten transmission of religious music and dance in pagan societies is to consult the literature on the ritual societies of the Hopi and other Southwestern nations, or the literature on the secret societies of tropical west Africa.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Corinna of California
Date: 22 Apr 98 - 06:03 PM

You may wish to search on the web for sites regarding Wicca, Celtic Shamanism, Druids, Water Worship, Fertility Ceremonies, Goddess Religions, Rites of the Norse and New World Religions (pre-christianity). Beware of any mention of heathens as most religions (especially the most dogmatic members) consider all others "heathens". Be also aware that some of the more authentic pagan rituals are a "bit" gruesome and not for kiddie bedtime tales or tunes. There is also interesting fare in the areas of myths regarding the orgins of earth and her people, hallucinogenic plants, core shamanism, and focal power points on earth.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: T. in Oklahoma
Date: 23 Apr 98 - 05:04 PM

Wicca is the religion which was invented by Gerald Gardner in the 1940s-1950s. It is a product of modern, industrialized, literate civilization. That doesn't mean that Wicca can't provide a field for MudPuppy's sociological research project. Various Wiccan groups may deliberately have decided to let some of their evolving lore remain unwritten. (An analogous case in antiquity is the formation of the Jewish Mishna.) But since Wicca only dates to the 1940s, no Wiccan group can posess "ancient" traditions which have never been written down. Mudpuppy's original posting specifies "ancient" beliefs. In light of what I've posted elsewhere on this thread, MudPuppy's attempt to find "ancient" beliefs will probably prove fruitless if by "ancient" is meant a thousand years old or more. MudPuppy may simply have to relax this qualification and settle for studying oral transmission of more recently formed traditions.

Shamanism is a Siberian practice. "Celtic shamanism" strikes me as an incongruous combination of words. What do you mean by it?


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Bruce O.
Date: 23 Apr 98 - 05:20 PM

I was taught that 'Shamanism' is the 'witch doctor', loosely. He is the leader of the spiritual side of life, and healer of any tribe as distinct fromr the political leader. His powers are from some god or gods, and he is usually in some way oddly different from other members of the tribe. This is usually some deformity which is taken as a mark of favour of the gods singling him out to be their spiritual leader. This seems to be pretty much world wide (many old cultures).

I'm impreessed by the sensibility and knowledge of the commentors above. No one seems to have bought the 20th century version of witchcraft, as anything but what it is, bunk. The many 'New Age' books of the 1970's seem to have all but disappeared. No more 'crystal powers', none of Isobel Gowdie's hexs, no instructions for observing and interpreting halos, dreams and the like, no magical properties of geometrical figures, and on and on.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Earl
Date: 24 Apr 98 - 09:51 AM

This is the most intelligent discussion I've ever seen on this topic. I have to disagree, though, that "new age" books, crystals, etc. are disappearing. The web is crawling with neo-pagan groups selling a mishmash of spiritual ideas and merchandise with little regard for the history of any of it.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Bill in Alabama
Date: 24 Apr 98 - 10:08 AM

The term Shamanism, while it may originally have been used to refer to certain religious beliefs in the Urals, is now generally used to refer to any religious practice, ancient or modern, which has at its core the belief that only certain specially-trained or uniquely gifted individuals in a group can affect spirits which control the forces impelling mortals.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: T. in Oklahoma
Date: 24 Apr 98 - 03:32 PM

My hunch is that Bill in Alabama's definition of 'shamanism' is a little too broad. It doesn't allow much room for distinctions from other froms of priest-craft. I suspect a more useful definition would involve trances and spriritual journeys. Does anyone know if Carlo Ginzburg, the Italian historian from Bologna, has a definition of shamanism in his recent book "Ecstasies" ? (I'm still waiting to get it on interlibrary loan.)


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: T in Oklahoma (a.k.a. Okiemockbird)
Date: 05 Oct 99 - 10:04 AM

Ad renovationem

Some of what was touched on in this thread is relevant to a turn being taken in the "millenium" thread.

Of special note is steve t's "fermented fluids" quatrain above.

T


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: katlaughing
Date: 05 Oct 99 - 10:32 AM

As an "Earth" religion, Native Americans have many old songs available, nowadays at least by recording, which are beautiful and meaningful. I am surprised nobody mentioned them.

I also think there has been a great deal of generalisation concerning the Old Religion etc. In the early days of Christianity, long before the 1940's as mentioned above, covens of the Old Religion were called Wicca or Wicce from an Anglo-Saxon root word meaning "to bend or shape", i.e. they were seen as the ones who could shape the unseen to their will.

Skeat's Eymological Dictionary derived "witch" from medieval English wicche formerly Anglo-Saxon wicca masculine, or wicce, feminine: a corruption of witga, short form of witega, a seer or diviner; from Anglo Saxon witan, to see, to know. Similarly, Icelandic vitki, a witch, came from vita, to know; or vizkr, clever or knowing one. Wizard came from Norman French wischard, Old French guiscart, sagacious one. The surname Whitaker came from Witakarlege, a wizard or witch. The words "wit and "wisdom" came from the same roots. Quote from Women's Encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets by Barbara G. Walker, Harper & Row, 1983.

Interesting thread, Ted, thanks for reviving it.

kat


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: T in Oklahoma (a.k.a. Okiemockbird)
Date: 05 Oct 99 - 11:12 AM

One point of my posts was that there was no single "old religion"; the Gardnerian Wicca was invented in the 1940s based on the Murray thesis which is frankly wrong, and its connections to old polytheism (drawn perhaps mainly from the Blavatsky/Crowley tradition) are tenuous and contain no melodies that can be shown to be an ancient tradition handed down from remote antiquity without any assistance by writing whatsoever.

A recent book review that touches on the history of the Gardnerian Wicca and related issues can be found here. The book author's reply to the review is found here

The wide variety of non-Christian American Indian religions (many Indians are Christian, so Christianity now must be considered an American Indian religion) should make us cautious of lumping them all together as "Earth" religions. We should be careful of calling any such religion an "earth" religion without being clear on what we mean. I don't know of any demonstrably pre-contact American religious tradition that included, for example, an Earth god or goddess in its pantheon. Some of the northern plains peoples in some of their traditional ceremonies mention a grandmother earth, but I can't vouch for the antiquity of this tradition. It may be post-contact.

The Maya 260-day sacred almanac is certainly an ancient tradition, and has probably been passed on mainly orally, but it isn't music. Since American Indian societies (and their languages) have continued continued to adapt and evolve after the arrival of the new-American nations--when the new Principal Chief of the Cherokee Nation was installed a few weeks back, one song that was sung was "Amazing Grace" sung in Cherokee-- we should be skeptical of assertions of antiquity for any particular lyric or melody.

Anyhow, as I mentioned earlier, I think steve t's post is one of the high points of the thread.

T


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird)
Date: 06 Oct 99 - 10:32 AM

Further remark touching slightly on adaptation and development in musical tradition: One of my favorite American Indian melodies goes to a Navajo song entitled "The Old Glory Raising on Iwo Jima." If anyone on-list knows where I could find a translation of the words, I'd appreciate it.

T


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Neil Lowe
Date: 06 Oct 99 - 10:58 AM

...one of the many, many reasons why I seldom post to music threads....I got lost somewhere around Child Ballads, being under the mistaken impression that these were ballads for children. From there things worsened exponentially for me.

Ignorantly, Neil


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Art Thieme
Date: 06 Oct 99 - 11:17 AM

A question for those with more expertise on this topic than I posess:

Where might Joseph Campbell's comparitive mythological work come into play to shed meaningful light on the mentioned topics?

Also the works of ethnobotanist Wade Davis like __Shadows In the Sun__, __One River__ and especially __The Serpent And The Rainbow__.

(At an amazing dinner at George & Jerry Armstrong's house in Wilmette, Illinois, Joseph C. sang
Let us all praise Zarathustra,
Just the way we useta
I'm a Zarathustra booster,
And that's good enough for me.

Let us all praise Aphrodite,
She wears a see-through nighty,
She's beautiful but flighty,
And she's good enough for me.

That's all I remember right now.)

A fascinating discussion, but where would Campbell and Davis's work fit into the explorations in this thread? Seems to me that there would be plenty to glean from the work of these men.

Art Thieme


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird)
Date: 07 Oct 99 - 11:12 AM

Art,

Thanks for those two additional verses. I vaguely recall hearing the Z verse before, but Aphrodite's is new to me.

Okiemockbird(T)


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: MMario
Date: 07 Oct 99 - 11:15 AM

I think that song has more verses then "Drunken Sailor"


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird)
Date: 08 Oct 99 - 10:46 AM

Art,

I know of Wade Davis's work only at second hand. My completely untutored guess is that detailed plant lore (also called wortcunning) such as Wade Davis studies can take generations of trial and error to develop, so some of it, in some societies, might resemble the "ancient" orally transmitted traditions that MudPuppy wanted to study. Archaeological study of pollen samples can be used to establish a chronology for the use of certain plants; other archaeology might find circumstantial evidence for rituals involved with the use of plants. Still other archaeology might provide evidence that the people using the plants today are the cultural successors of people who used the same plants in the same way in the past. So it might be possible, though not easy, for an interdisciplinary study to trace the non-literary transmission of wortcunning traditions through the ages. But this is, I repeat, just a guess.

T.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Penny S.
Date: 09 Oct 99 - 02:12 PM

Since the great apes seem to have some knowledge of wortcunning, this probably goes back beyond any verbal records at all. I've often wondered about the way that trial and error have been used to develop the knowledge of medicines and foodstuffs: some are very hard to imagine anyone working out from scratch. Puffer fish, or manioc, for example.

Penny


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Art Thieme
Date: 10 Oct 99 - 11:36 AM

Wade Davis is interested in all of it from his ethnobiological viewpoint. Shamanistic and indiginous use of bio-med agents in influencing medical healing and spiritual and inner personal insights, especially in the Amazon basin and in all other parts of the world. These are his workshops.---He and others are looking at local plants for the cure for cancer and solving the problems of not enough rubber in the world due to leaf blight in production areas -- and the shortcomings of synthetic rubber in solving these very real problems. And so much more. But he has great insight, I think, into the folklore and other practices of these people that have saved this knowledge for them (and for him).

But JOSEPH CAMPBELL delves into all of the peoples of the world throughout time and is interested in tracking how the motifs of folklore and dogma the world over and throughout time (what we know of it historically) repeat over and over. In showing those things we can infer that he is saying that nobody has the correct way -- but that we all do. That, I think, recently prompted a friend of mine to say he was an antisemite. Another friend told me that they thought he was against Christianity. Personally, I think that Mr. Campbell had feelings more toward those found in the song "MASTER OF THE SHEEPFOLD". (see other threads on that song and in the database.) He saw the value in ALL and he also saw the places where folks' dogmas and too literal interpritations often missed the point of where their favorite things in their religion possibly/probably sprang from. As I'm fond of saying, "Some people have tact; others tell the truth."

(Maybe I know more about these guys than I thought.)

Art Thieme


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: j0_77
Date: 10 Oct 99 - 06:17 PM

Read the Greeks on the 'Sirens' that is a great start also see the Bible referemces to the 'Cananites', Classical Roman Litrature - references abound - Hippocrates some refs ... hmmm ... there are some more .... old Celtic Language material lots of good stuff - see Tuatha De Dannan - gaelic Goltrai, Geantrai, Suantrai.

Modern practices can still be found in central Europe.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: katlaughing
Date: 10 Oct 99 - 06:53 PM

Yes, you DO, Art! After all YOU are the one among us who actually dined with the great Mr Campbell, himself!*g*

Another interesting reference book is the Metaphysical Bible Dictionary by Charles Fillmore, sold by Unity School of Christianity, located in Lee's Summit, Missouri, or at any Unity Church. I gave my copy to my son-in-law, so don't have it here for reference at the moment.

kat


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: MAG (inactive)
Date: 10 Oct 99 - 08:19 PM

Ah, Kat! You are with Unity! You may know my friend, Elizabeth Ellis, the storyteller, who lives in Dallas.

Joe Campbell on a tape from some PBS special series talks about his differences with one rabbinic theologian. According to Campbell, the other guy got upset at some of Campbell's questions, which dared compare some Asian practice with his own.

well, yes, said Campbell - compare - that's what I do: comparative religion.

Unfortunately, on the same tape he told a Rabbi joke. I had a funny feeling about that, and I'm not Jewish. He may have been being testy. His work is SO important to storytellers I give him the benefit of the doubt.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Art Thieme
Date: 11 Oct 99 - 01:30 AM

Mary Ann,

I do have those lectures that Campbell gave, but mine are on videos that Fritz Schuler made for me from Green Bay Public TV in Wisconsin. They were mostly lectures he gave at Sarah Lawrence College where he was a professor for many years. I can't tell you how glad I was to get those.

Joe Campbell thought that all people are talking about the same thing when they say God or Buddha, or Krishna or Jesus or Zeus or fate or The Sun or The Moon or The Earth Mother or Virgin Mary or The Force or the "powers of the universe" or the Ghost Dance or Wovoka---whatever. But I know that we who might feel that way are opening ourselves up to charges from ALL THE GROUPS that we are anti-their religion. Joe Campbell never would have seen himself as against anybody. He just enjoyed finding the similarities through time the world over---a laudible venture that he pursued for most of his life. The search became the grail for him. As Elkin Thomas said in a fine song of his, "The journey is all the time." If Campbell made a mistake, it was in sounding too certain that his facts were actually facts and not theories. In that sense, he is like me when I stand up for traditional music. I sound pretty certain that I'm correct. When that occasionally happens, please accept my before-the-fact apology.

The above is part of what Campbell was talking about when he spoke of THE MASKS OF GOD. The various names are the masks---whether it's a dragon or a pillar of fire or smoke leading the people or killing the grasshoppers in Utah (and other miracles). I mean no offense to anyone for taking Campbell's points seriously.

Art


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: philip
Date: 11 Oct 99 - 06:05 PM

Hi I have been wondering for years about the intense effects of music on both body and mind. The other day I lead a group of children experimenting with simple clapping at different speeds....The change in their behavior and body language when changing from slow to fast and back again was very obvious. I would love to know more about music in ancient ceremonys(bone pipes with recoder fingering have been found in sites dating from before the use of fire!)


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Jeff Kalmar
Date: 11 Oct 99 - 07:50 PM

As an initiate of Gardnerian Wicca and a musician, I must agree with those who state that the likelihood of finding "authentic ancient" Wiccan music is slim to nil. I'm going to take a leap here, and assume that what Mud Puppy is looking for are songs from Celtic and/or other British Isles folklore that have at least some hint of Wicca/Paganism/Faerie Lore etc. I don't think there are any 1000-year-old examples survuving, but some of Yeats's poetry fits the bill (i.e. "The Stolen Child" as recorded by Loreena McKennitt), "Oak, Ash and Thorn" (Available in the Digitrad database), many of the Child Ballads ("Tam Lin" and "True Thomas" spring to mind), and modern songs that "sound old", such as Archie Fisher's "Witch of the West-Mer-Lands" and many of the songs from the movie "The Wicker Man". As for other Pagan religions such as Hinduism, Egyptian Poltheism and ancient Greco-Roman beliefs, There are numerous example available, such as Delphic hymns and fragments of text such as the prayers quoted by Philip Glass in "Akhnaten". There are probably some Shinto songs still sung in Japan, and some African and Native American tribes have preserved some songs. But if you're looking for songs sung by the ancient Druids at the Solstice when Stonehenge was shiny and new, Lotsa luck! Unless you know someone who channels Taliesin! :-)


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird)
Date: 11 Oct 99 - 11:45 PM

I am only slightly familiar with Joseph Campbell's work. My first impression--it is only a first impression--is that he is a rather sloppy scholar.

I think the evidence for a Jew-hating streak in Campbell's personality is at least as strong as that for Pat Buchanan. If Campbell were still alive, I doubt I would care to become his friend, or to take his advice on morals, ethics, or statecraft.

I'm willing to elaborate on either opinion if anyone is interested.

MudPuppy has never returned, at least not under that name. I don't know what became of his product to study (1) ancient traditions transmitted by (2) pagans (3) utterly without the aid of any writing whatsoever. About a year and a half ago I wrote that MudPuppy might have to relax requirement (1) and study more recently-formed traditions. A good example, though I didn't mention it at the time, would be the Gaiwiio (I think that's how you spell it) of Handsome Lake, which has been transmitted orally among the Senecas since the 1800s. The strong Quaker influence on Handsome Lake's teaching might amount, however, to a partial relaxation of requirement (2). Jeff Kalmar now makes another reasonable proposal: That MudPuppy, by relaxing requirements (2) and (3), become a fairly conventional folklorist and study folkloric motifs, presuppositions, and customs, some possibly ancient, that have been transmitted among literate Christians. As my posts above show, I agree with Jeff Kalmar that such a project will never turn up ancient melodies (other than the Hokey-Pokey--see other thread). Jeff is right that a few ancient melodies have been deciphered in modern times. But these are hardly "folkloric" items.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: paddymac
Date: 12 Oct 99 - 11:41 AM

This has been a fascinating thread from the start, and there realy doesn't seem to be much to add of great substance, so I will make only a few comments. Most of us enter these sorts of discussions with inherent biases which we often may not be aware of. An example might be to contrast "pagan" with "Christian" or "Jewish" or "Islam", etc.(note the capitalization variance). Modern writers seem to have a penchant for describing pagan belief systems as "nature based". A more useful descriptor might be "observational" in that the belief systems seek to explain the observed environment, often in terms of the observations themselves. In contrast, many non-pagan belief systems seem rely more heavily on mental constructs.

An earlier contributer commented on Amazing Grace having been sung in Cherokee at the installation of a new Cherokee Chief. The melody used for the song is one of two commonly found in old psaltries under the title "Britannia", but it is my understanding that it is actually based on a tune common to the Creek, Cherokee and Choctaw people in pre-Colombian times. Whatever its origin, and whatevr the lyrics, it is an emminently singable song.

With apologies to the Jungians among us *BG*, "May The Force be With You All".


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Penny S.
Date: 12 Oct 99 - 12:56 PM

I think the pagan/Christian (and others) capitalisation thing is partly to do with the true parallel being between pagan and monotheistic, for example, being generic rather than specific. Hinduism, though "pagan" is a specific form (or group of forms) of religious belief and practice, which is not yet true of modern paganism. I don't really think the difference is entirely due to the values and bias of those who use lower case.

Penny


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Bert
Date: 12 Oct 99 - 01:35 PM

Phillip, Re: "...effects of music on both body and mind"
I was singing at an event recently and, as is my wont, I sang several funny (silly) songs. When I had finished an elderly woman in the audience said to me, 'You know, when I came here the veins in my legs were hurting, but I laughed so much the pain has all gone'

Bert.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: MAG (inactive)
Date: 12 Oct 99 - 07:42 PM

Joe Campbell certainly had cutting things to say about the OT punishing Jehovah -- and also about slave-dealing Muhammad and other religious icons. That alone doesn't make him antiSemitic, or I would qualify. comparing him to Pat Buchanan doesn't hold up.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird)
Date: 12 Oct 99 - 08:59 PM

The evidence of Joseph Campbell's Jew-hating comes more from casual remarks heard by people who knew him than from his published writings. For example

"In the early 1970s I worked with Joe Campbell on his Mythic Image at Princeton University Press. It was amazing to me that this man of cosmic vision could harbor such mean-spirited and seemingly unexamined biases against much of mankind. In addition to anti-Semitism, I remember in particular his vexation over blacks' being admitted to Sara Lawrence"
--Carol Wallace Orr, letter to the New York Review of Books, November 9, 1989, page. 58.

"When the astronauts landed on the moon, Joe made the repellant jest to a member of my family who was a student of his at the time, that the moon would be a good place to put the Jews"
--Brendan Gill, response to letters to the New York Review of Books, November 9, 1989, page. 60.

"At one faculty function, in 1969 or '70, I found myself drinking with Campbell and another, older, equally right-wing teacher. At some point in the evening, Campbell, responding to a remark I can't recall, said something to the effect that he could always spot a Jew. I, a Jew, said, 'Oh?' Whereupon Campbell went into a description of how the New York Athletic Club had ingeniously managed for years to keep Jews out. He went on and on, telling his story in the most charming and amiable fashion, without any self-consciousness about the views he was expressing and, indeed, without any overt animus--for all that he obviously relished the notion of keeping Jews out of anywhere any time, forever."
--Arnold Krupat, letter to the Editor, The New York Times, December 2, 1989, section 1, page 26, column 5.

This suggests a man who, like Jesse Jackson, learned Jew-hatred as a child, but, unlike Jesse Jackson, never saw the need to unlearn it.

There is evidence, though, of an even darker side of Campbell's Jew-hating mean streak. Roy Finch, a colleague of Campbell's for many years at Sarah Lawrence, in the same issue of the New York Review of Books already cited, called Campbell a "crypto-fascist". In an interview with the Boston Globe, Finch said that Campbell was a "romantic heroic fascist" (though he added that Campbell was "in no sense a bigot." I have difficult seeing how it is possible to espouse romantic-heroic fascism without bigotry, but let that go for now.) Furthermore, in an interview with Richard Bernstein of the New York Times:

"'Joe tended to lump people together,' Professor Finch said. 'So, for example, if he's criticizing Communists, he might be inclined to lump them together with Jews. He thought the left-wing, liberal, Jewish, Communist point of view was part of the degeneration that was going on in our society, and his comments were in that context.'"
--Richard Bernstein, "After Death, a Writer is Accused of Anti-Semitism", The New York Times, November 6, 1989, Section C, page 17, column 3.

Lumping "the Jews" together with the ills that are causing "the degeneration of society" is classic anti-Semitism. Professor Finch was not saying that he ever heard Campbell utter a remark of this kind, and in the Boston Globe interview he said positively that he never heard Campbell utter a racist comment. But in the statement to the New York Times, Finch is saying that he considers it consistent with what he knows of Campbell's character that Campbell would mention "the Jews" as part of "the degeneration" of society.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Art Thieme
Date: 12 Oct 99 - 09:09 PM

I see that discussing this is gonna step on various toes -- possibly mine included. So--before I cause some to lose some nails---I'm out o' this thread! (I think that's best right now.)

Art


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: katlaughing
Date: 12 Oct 99 - 11:03 PM

Same thing I'd decided, Art.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Art Thieme
Date: 13 Oct 99 - 12:37 PM

T in Oklahoma,

I just re-read your post here. If what you're telling us is true, I heartily thank you for enlightening me. I had placed Mr. Campbell on a bit of a pedastal.

Joe is now stepping down. And his feet are turning to clay before my eyes... It's hard to watch. There is some blood-letting involved -- for him and for me. It's hard to associate someone with such brilliant insights into human history and spirituality with such low views of humanity itself.
I'm in shock. I feel like I was just in a plane crash.

Art


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: M. Ted (inactive)
Date: 13 Oct 99 - 12:42 PM

I have been following the thread, waiting for my chance to throw in some suggestions about looking into Voudou and Santaria(both offer tons of great music!)--but I haven't, because I haven't quite been able to figure out if I understand the question----

It isn't clear what Mudpuppy is focussing on-- What, exactly, are Pagan/Folk/Magical and Earth Religions? How do you separate them from all the other religions?

Then there is the question of "ancient beliefs"? Do these have to be religions that exist both in the present day and in ancient times? Or can it be religions that exist in either ancient or modern times?

As Mudpuppy mentioned present day documentation if practices and rituals doesn't necessarily mean that they existed like that in the past--the problem that is for every point of time in the past, that is true as well--

Voudou in (randomly picked date) 1799 could be considerably different that of a hundred years earlier, as it undoubtably was of a hundred years later, and certainly of two hundred years later--

Of course this would also be true of the music, which may have changed even faster than other practices, because of the introduction of musicians from other cultures and new musical instruments--

The big problem that I can't figure out the "where" and "when"--cultures each exist in a place and time (We like to use terms like "Golden Age"--like"The Golden Age of Madrigals" or "The Golden Age of Religious Persecution") and of course, religious customs, rituals, etc are a product of a group of people at a given place and time--

That business about worshipping the corn god, with the soccer games where the losers were killed and the winners drank some sort of fermented hot chocolate out of their skulls, was not done everwhere in the world until the Cistercian Monks taught Christianity and that if you left home and hung out with a wildman in the forest, your hair would turn gold if you dipped it in the magic pond after being told not to (even though everyone does it) so that Joseph Campbell could use it as a cover for the shameful bigottry of his youth and Robert Bly could use it to put his grandchildren through college(I am getting carried away here, and I am sorry...)

It was part of a culture from a specific period of time--Even though some of the ritual elements may be carried as fragments into succeeding cultures (Note Frosty the Snowman's corncob pipe in our contemporary Western Christmas folklore!!!)

So anyway, I am really confused--Maybe I'll just gather up my Morris Team and go kill a few chickens--


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: MAG (inactive)
Date: 13 Oct 99 - 12:53 PM

If all of the anecdotes are true, yeah, he comes off the pedestal.

I am generally a bit skeptical of anecdotes which surface after someone dies.

On another list to which I belong, someone was spreading a load of malarky about Kinsey (of The Kinsey Report), 30 years after the man's death, in order to discredit his scientific research into human sexuality. They shut up when I pointed out how these stories surfaced when there was no one left who could verify them. (About the same amount of time, incidentally, between the death of Jesus and the writing down of his miracle stories.)

I'm not saying this is what happened with Campbell, only that it will take a careful objective look at all the evidence before the jury is in.

Sme have tried to "prove" that Carl Jung did not write *Dreams, Memories, and Reflections.* A careful look at the evidence by Jung scholars confirms that he did indeed write the material, with minor posthumous editing by his secretary. There is some evidence that he was not a very nice person, which doesn't invalidate his brilliant insights into the human psyche. (Kinda like some folk musicians whose work you admire, but wouldn't be friends with.)

MAG


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: T in Oklahoma (a.k.a. Okiemockbird)
Date: 13 Oct 99 - 01:04 PM

Art, it wasn't my intent to cause you or anyone else any pain. I was sticking up for my thesis that the prima facie case that Joseph Campbell had an anti-Jewish streak in his personality is at least as strong as the case that Pat Buchanan has such a flaw.

If you want to keep Campbell on a pedestal, it might be logically possible. I believe there are Jungian web sites which try to defend Campbell against the claim that he was anti-Jewish. I have not seen these web sites, so I can't be sure. I think you can find them by doing a simultaneous web search for the names "Brendan Gill" and "Joseph Campbell" or for the name "Joseph Campbell" and the phrase "anti-semitism."

Whether Campbell had a mean streak, and whether this aspect of his personality influenced his scholarship, are two separate questions. If it can be shown, say, that Campbell mentioned the Hebrew Scriptures in a negative light rather than a positive one, whenever he had a "choice of lighting", or if it can be shown that he took pleasure in the pain he knew he would cause those who revere those scriptures when he spoke of them in ways he knew might shock or offend, then I would say that his private flaw did detract from his public work. But this, as I said, is a separate question from whether he had the private flaw to begin with.

T.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: M. Ted (inactive)
Date: 13 Oct 99 - 01:30 PM

To be serious, or at least more serious, I believe that I heard Bill Moyers discuss Campbell's anti-semitism-- on "Fresh Air" at the time his series on Campbell was originally aired--Terry Gross, who was aware that there had been sensitivities expressed, asked Moyer pointedly about it, and Moyer responded that Campbell had acknowledged that he was raised in an atmosphere where anti-semitism was expressed and accepted, and that he had carried it with him into his adulthood--Campbell had renounced it, and worked to overcome it in himself--

You may or may not choose to accept that someone who is a self-acknowledged anti-semite can change, for my part, I don't care enough about Campbell for it to matter to me--

I can say that as far as Ezra Pound is concerned, (who, although off-topic, was both more important as a writer than Campbell, and far more noted in his anti-semitiscm) I was greatly relieved to learn that toward the end of his life, he acknowledged that his anti-semitism, and his advocacy of Mussolini and the Fascists, had been wrong--


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: MAG (inactive)
Date: 13 Oct 99 - 05:59 PM

Pound had to recant or go to jail.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: j0_77
Date: 13 Oct 99 - 07:02 PM

Accepting a case from 'hearsay' is like buying a car for your hard earned money that is not even designed let alone off the production line. Extremely stupid but is a popular method of manipulating public opinion. IT IS A CON folks - Art I hope you are reading this.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Art Thieme
Date: 13 Oct 99 - 11:12 PM

No big deal, guys and gals. Rather fascinating though---this whole discourse. In the last decade I've pretty much determined this one thing at least: There is no truth. Only what seems to be true at the moment. It's how I learned to stop worrying and love the passing parade---even when it's a freak show. That's why I like you folks so much.

When I mentioned, "...if the statements posted by T in Oklahoma are true..." I should've also noted my feelings about "truth" not being an absolute for me.

Try Alan Watts amazing book, "THE WISDOM OF INSECURITY".

(and keep laughing)

Art


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Art Thieme
Date: 13 Oct 99 - 11:17 PM

I said I was out o' this thread! But, as it happens, that wasn't true at all...

Art


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: M. Ted (inactive)
Date: 14 Oct 99 - 01:42 PM

MAG,

Pound did not recant to get clemency--

Old Uncle Ez was punished harshly for his words--first he was incarcerated for many months in what amounted to a tin box in Pisa, then brought to the US, tried for treason, and sentenced to a mental institution, St. Elizabeth's Hospital, here in Washington, where he spent about 12 years--

His expressions of error were made in the last years of his life, well after all the battles concercing his literary reputation were over, and in Italy, where there was nothing to be gained--


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird)
Date: 14 Oct 99 - 02:19 PM

M.Ted, you're right except that, in the version I heard, Pound was never formally "tried". He was found mentally incompetent to stand trial, and sent to St. Elizabeth's on those grounds.

In your first post to this thread (unless you posted earlier under another name) you put your finger on the whole difficulty this thread has had from the beginning. MudPuppy never said exactly what he (I consider "puppy" to be a gramatically masculine noun) meant. I suspect he accepted the Murray thesis, or something like it, and believed that the Gardnerian Wicca is the direct institutional and cultural successor, by continuous transmission from generation to generation, of a pre-Christian European religions, and that he believed that the Gardnerian Wicca possessed ancient melodies handed down unchanged from remote antiquity without the aid of writing. If this is what MudPuppy meant, then I hold that he was wrong on every point. But maybe that's not what MudPuppy meant. In any case, religious music (Christian or non-Christian, written or unwritten) and other sorts of traditions or customs (whether in "Christendom" or elsewhere) can be fruitful fields of research. As you point out, though, a researcher has to be ready to find both continuity and change.

I don't know why no one ever mentioned the customs of the Roma or Gypsy people on this thread. I vaguely remember considering bringing it up and deciding not to. Now I don't remember why. Oh well.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: j0_77
Date: 14 Oct 99 - 03:30 PM

MudPuppy begins "Pagan/Folk/Magical ..earth.... religions have primarily an oral tradition.." Hmmmmm wonder bout that one.

"My research project to shed new light on these virtually unwritted (unwritten?) traditions ..by attempting to track down

music, lyrics, and tunes associated with these practices and beliefs.

"

Only criticism here is if the music was 'associated' as in 'accidental dressing for' then twould be of little use, eg wallpaper music for the 'hubble bubble toil n trouble..' ceremony. A stronger use of music would be the celtic Goltrai which claimed to give the player/owner power over his enemy by making them sad - I suppose that would be sold as 'tears' so the foe could not see too good. Why, may I ask, would not that same music also affect the owner?

Second issue here is there were no set tunes for these practices: rather it was the way in which the harper played that was claimed to have the effect.
COMMENT I might not use the same method, but I must admit it is a good start. Yup Mudpuppy you are on to something - but I'd bet there are already thesis on the topic.

"It's been a fruitless search. I found one book that may shed some light if I can obtain a copy of it. No web sites I have found are helpful, no books, music stores, or musicians. If anybody can offer assistance, I'd be super grateful. "

hmmm we tried ...


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: M. Ted (inactive)
Date: 14 Oct 99 - 08:35 PM

Sorry I glossed a little on Pound--there was a hearing held and, based on the findings of a team of psychiatrists, he was found to be hopelessly insane--

Oddly enough, a recently published book revealed that three of the four psychiatrists found him to be sane, but deferred to the pronouncement of the fourth to avoid embarassing him professionally--

I looked in my handy dandy Harvard Musical Dictionary and in their discussion of folk music, which says,

"folksongs are obviously old, but their age is often exaggerated. Infe fields of musical study have pure fantasy and wishful thinking been given rein to such a degree as in folk music where melodies showing unmistakeable traits of having orignated in the 17th and 18th centuries are said to date back to the pre-Christian era."

I think it goes without saying that this is also true of the folk music that has religious associations--

It's funny how even religions that started yesterday can show that they are directly descended from some seminal religion in the mystical prehistory-


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: MAG (inactive)
Date: 14 Oct 99 - 09:34 PM

My recollections from college are that Pound backed off and was willing to play the idiot, and the doctors were willing to pronounce him incompetent, in order to avoid having to send a very prominent writer to prison. Now if that ain't copping a plea, I don't know what is.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: M. Ted (inactive)
Date: 15 Oct 99 - 01:35 AM

You may take that view if you want--but three of the four psychiatrists found him mentally competent, after all-- And he had survived Pisa, where (as I understand it) many those around him were taken away and summarily executed--after suriving that, I think that he believed that he didn't have much to fear--

In fact, rather than being particularly penitent,Pound seems to have continued to shoot his mouth off in the irascible and offensive way that he always had, even well into the time that he was at St. Elizabeth's--it has been said that he said more damning things there than he had previously--

At any rate, the charges could have been prosecuted as capital crimes--slightly more severe than a few years in prison, and, whatever he might have said, he was widely regarded as one of America's greatest poets--so the Government was undoubtedly interested in finding a way out, as well--

Anyway, he is, or was, not an easy person to like--

I have spent many hours, over many years reading his work--like many others, I have a lot of trouble with some of the things I find in his work, and am fed up periodically, only to return--And for me, at least, his own acknowledgments make it easier to reconcile that stuff--and easier to read him, though not to understand him--


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Art Thieme
Date: 28 Apr 00 - 10:03 AM

When I put "Joseph Campbell and antisemitism" into a search engine many observations from those close to him came up. True or not, it was food for thought and has made me listen to the man differently than even in previous thoughts I made within this thread. Whether this is fair to the mans reputation or not, it's the way I feel now. I'm sure I'll mellow, but for now, April 28, 2000, that's the reality.

Art Thieme


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Peg
Date: 28 Apr 00 - 10:31 AM

whoa, sorry I am coming so late to this thread...as someone who has performed in no fewer than four pagan bands, and who does a lot of wrting on pagan topics, I might have something valuable to offer (than again maybe not!!!)...
first off, MudPuppy, a book you should locate is "Earth Air Fire Water" by two authors named Skelton and Blackwood; their book is purely about your very topic: pagan imagery and origins of a great many traditional songs and poems, mostly divided into categories of subject matter (magic, nature worship, sexuality, etc.) It may be out of print, in which case I might be persuaded to make photocopies from my copy for you...
As usual these pagan threads have been very interesting...and as usual Okie/T in Oklahoma has been trying desperately to provide us with all the answers. Please, no offense intended, but lighten up a bit! You are obviously well-read on the subject but so are many of us and, while some of us admit there are many differing views and approaches to these topics, you appear to be the only one saying "DON'T read this or that book" or "THIS is the WAY IT IS, no other interpretation possible." This is simply not the way to go about addressing these topics when so much of what we "know" is mere conjecture and poetic product anyway!!!
You say Gardner's books should be avoided, then a few posts later you say Wicca may be a good resource for Helen's research...huh???
Since Helen's research interests lie squarely in the realm of folklore and interpretation of that folklore and how folk magic ways are related to modern pagan practice (and they ARE related, even though, as you correctly point out, Wicca was invented piecemeal by Gardner in the 40s; but he cobbled it together from lots of stuff that had been around for along time and Hutton has demonstrated quite clearly the link between agrarian rituals and beliefes and modern pagan practices), then why on earth should she be told to avoid the work of Graves, Frazer, Campbell, Murray and other authors whose specialty is examining folklore??? I think dismissing these authors and their books, who have been part of the "canon" on these subjects for so very long, is pure folly. At the very least we must acknowledge their influence, even if some of their theories or analyses have been discredited or attacked by those who came later.
I guess I am of the school of thought that thinks no source by any serious scholar (of folklore, history, archeology or magic) should be discounted without having read it first...I mean, Hutton's peers in academia think he is a bit of a nutter for being a practicing pagan, do they not??? And that naturally colors their reception of his work which most of us would agree is of very high quality.

sorry if this post sounds too righteous but there is way too much "I know something you don't know" in the pagan think tanks these days and, since we all start from a place of not knowing anything, we must not forget that each day brings new opportunities to learn...

blessings at Beltaine,

Peg/Albion


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Peg
Date: 28 Apr 00 - 10:48 AM

oops, in the post above I said "Helen" when I meant "Mud Puppy"

sorry about that....mudpuppy's name was not on the thread list...


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: GUEST,Okiemockbird
Date: 28 Apr 00 - 11:05 AM

I don't know what Hutton's colleagues think of his initiation into the mysteries of the Gardnerian Wicca. But I think his scholarly reputation was established before his initiation, and stands on its own.

MudPuppy has never returned, so I don't know how his project came out. But I repeat that, as I read between the lines of his original post, I think he was working from some flawed presuppositions. As I read, he wanted ancient music that had been passed down from deep antiquity without the aid of any writing whatsoever. I think this was a hopeless proposal on its face and advised him to revise his expectations.

T.


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Eluned
Date: 28 Apr 00 - 06:52 PM

This is a FAScinating thread, and I'm glad Art saw fit to bring it back into play!
I have two questions;
One, why did nobody mention the "Wren Song"????
Two, why does everybody say "Mudpuppy" wanted UNWRITTEN sources, when he stated he wanted "virtually unwritten"? If something survives several centuries and has been written down for 50 years, that IS only a small percentage of its existence!


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Subject: RE: Pagan/Folk/Earth Music Reasearch Project
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 28 Apr 00 - 09:35 PM

I should imagine that nobody mentioned the Wren Song because there is no evidence that there is anything "pagan" about it.  "Virtually unwritten" sources are a bit of a problem, really, since by definition it's only possible to have an opinion about them once they exist in recorded form.  A song that was observed and written down 50 years ago may have been around for "several centuries", but how do you know?  It could just as easily have been made up 51 years ago.  Unless we really want to look like the silly stereotypes that people who despise folkmusic would like us to be, we need to be extremely careful about what we claim; and we need to be able to back up our claims with evidence.

Malcolm


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