Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Pagan altar found at Israel construction site

Pagan altar found at Israel construction site

JERUSALEM — Israel on Thursday announced the discovery of a 2,000-year-old pagan altar at the site where plans for a new hospital wing have come under fire from ultra-Orthodox Jews who fear bones found there may be of Jews.

The find of what the Israel Antiquities Authority calls a "magnificent" altar gives a boost to the authorities at a time when ultra-orthodox Jews condemned the removal of bones from ancient graves at the site in the southern city of Ashkelon.

"The find further corroborates the assertion that this place is a pagan cemetery," the IAA said in a statement.
The altar is about 60 centimetres (24 inches) tall and is decorated with a bull's head from which dangle laurel wreaths. Such altars usually stood in Roman temples, the statement said.

It was discovered as the IAA was overseeing development of a hospital wing designed to withstand rockets fired from the nearby Gaza Strip by Palestinian militants.

Hundreds of ultra-Orthodox Jews in black suits and wide-brimmed hats on Thursday staged the latest of several demonstrations against the project in their Jerusalem stronghold of Mea Shearim.

They marched to the spot where the bones found at the Ashkelon site are to be reburied, waving banners saying: "We ask forgiveness from the dead whose graves have been desecrated."

"The bones have been given to the (religious) undertaker to be buried in a Jewish cemetery, since there is a possibility they are Jewish," a spokesman for the religious affairs ministry told AFP.

The planned relocation has provoked the fury of the ultra-Orthodox community for whom the removal of Jewish remains is forbidden under religious law.

However, archaeologists say there are no ancient Jewish graves at the site.

Two months ago, the government decided to shelve its construction plans following huge pressure from the ultra-Orthodox, among them Deputy Health Minister Yaacov Litzman whose United Torah Judaism party holds five seats in parliament.

The decision, which would have meant relocating the new wing elsewhere at a cost to taxpayers of at least 100 million shekels (21 million euros, 26 million dollars), caused public fury.
The government was then forced into a U-turn and gave the go-ahead for construction at the contested site.

Original Article

Pagan Antiquities Found in Israel

Pagan Antiquities Found in Israel

In a natural hollow in the bedrock of Lower Galilee, southeast of Haifa, Israeli archaeologists have discovered a rare treasure trove of ancient vessels. The area has yielded several archaeological finds, but the latest discovery was surprising because the 3,500-year-old vessels were found intact.

Edwin Van Den Brink, and archeologist with the Israel Antiquities Authority said: “We found in a cave about three metres below the ground, an assemblage of cultic ceramic pottery, vessels, coming from a temple. The temple itself has not been excavated, we don’t even know where it is located, but we did find this cave which contains a lot of material which comes from this unexcavated temple.”

Each find was moved with the utmost care, before being thoroughly documented. The purpose of these objects is not fully understood but according to the archaeologists here, considerable time and thought was taken over the placement of the vessels in the rock-hollow. The evidence is that different kinds of vessels were buried separately.

Said Edwin Van Den Brink: “Our work in the field, the excavation work, has finished now, but actually now our real work starts to do the research about what we excavated.”

One of the theories is that these items were buried to protect them from possible destruction during the preparations ahead of an impending battle… but that theory has yet to be proved!

Original Article

New Magic Spells Shop Opens Its Doors To The World Via The Web

New Magic Spells Shop Opens Its Doors To The World Via The Web

A new shop devoted to magic spells, witchcraft and the occult opened today, selling its wares via the internet and its website. The owner and operator, Crystal, says she hopes to bring affordable, high quality and effective magic to everyone.

(I-Newswire) June 4, 2010 - A new shop devoted to magic spells, witchcraft and the occult opened today, selling its wares via the internet and its website. The owner and operator, Crystal Whitestone, says she hopes to bring affordable, high quality and effective magic and mystery to the masses with her new venture, named "All Magic Spells".

Traditionally, magic is something that was practiced covertly by individuals or small groups of people, usually in secret. These "covens" of witches have been mistakenly regarded as evil and malevolent throughout history, but in fact witchcraft is almost exclusively used for positive purposes, and "Wicca" (a Pagan religion which incorporates witchcraft and magic spells) has many strict rules about use of magic for pure intentions.

Magic can be traced back many hundreds and thousands of years, and has been used by all ages and members of society for a wide variety of reasons. The effectiveness of the magic performed is affected by many factors, such as the quality of the spell, the intent of the caster, the experience of the caster, lunar phases and other considerations.

Real magic spells are not at all similar to magic as depicted in movies and on TV. There are no flashes, bangs, coloured lights or incredible feats that defy the laws of physics such as levitation, passing through walls, invisibility and so on. However, magic is very real and very powerful. Witches and wizards use magic spells to focus their minds, concetrate their energies and direct their lives towards their goals. By connecting with the world around them via their feelings, energies and emotions, witches are able to stimulate their subconscious minds for their own benefit.

Magic spells are short ceremonial rituals, usually involving some form of prayer or incantation, and often incoporating items such as candles, mirrors, crystals, incense, herbs and charms which have magical or mystical properties. Many magic spells try to include the 5 magical spirits (Earth, Air, Fire, Water and Aether), as well as some connection with nature and possibly other deities of the spell casters choosing.

Witches and wizards normally either write their own spells once they have enough experience with the craft, or they turn to libraries to locate spells written by others. This is a difficult task, and it is hard to know what is worth reading and what is not. With the opening of the All Magic Spells online store, Crystal hopes to alleviate this problem for beginner and advanced witches alike.

The magic spells offered by the All Magic Spells web store are broken down into different categories - love spells, money spells, protection spells and so on, so that customers may choose individual spells which suit their specific needs quickly and easily. Each spell comes with detailed step by step instructions and the spells are very simple to perform with no prior experience necessary. Plus, unlike many other online magic shops, All Magic Spells offers a full money back guarantee if customers are not satisfied. 

About Magic Spells:
An online store selling magic spells.

Company Contact Information
Magic Spells 

Orginal Article

100 members of British armed forces are pagans

100 members of British armed forces are pagans

Around 100 members of the British armed forces are pagans, while another 30 are witches, says a media report. 

The strange details about the beliefs of soldiers, sailors and airmen were obtained from the ministry of defence using the Freedom of Information Act, the Daily Mail reported. 

Paganism, which focuses on the worship of nature and its 'vitality and spirituality', finds its roots in the traditional religions of ancient Britain. Stonehenge, the ancient British site of stone obelisks, is their favourite place of pilgrimage.
Their rituals and festivals take place in woods or caves, on hilltops or seashores, where members meditate, chant, play music and dance, and recite poetry. Pagans believe that casting spells can help people in their daily lives. 

The vast majority of the servicemen recorded themselves as being Christian or of no religion. 

Nearly 60 of the servicemen are spiritualists, a faith which believes that the spirits of the dead can be contacted by mediums. Thirty servicemen and women follow wicca, which involves religious witchcraft, or druidism. Both are offshoots of paganism. 

Fifty are Rastafarians, a way of life which involves the worship of Haile Selassie, former King of Ethiopia. The Rastafarians are better known for their links with the reggae music of Bob Marley. 

A spokesperson of the British Druid Network, Phil Ryder, says there could be more pagans than the figures suggested. 'Druids and followers of wicca tend not to publicise their beliefs for fear of discrimination. In some areas it's seen as odd,' he told the Daily Mail. 

However, under the Equality Act, 2006 the armed forces cannot discriminate on the grounds of personal beliefs. 


Publisher cancels Wicca-themed children’s book series

Dark Magick (Sweep, No. 4)

Publisher cancels Wicca-themed children’s book series

First of 15-part Sweep series already printed

The Stabenfeldt publishing house has decided not to publish the Sweep series of books in Finland, Sweden, and Norway, following an outcry over content related to the Wicca religion. 

The fantasy books were to have been targeted at children aged 9 to 13 in Finland, Norway, and Sweden. The first part had already been sent to the printer.
Christian Democratic Party MP Leena Rauhala submitted a written question to the government on Friday, stating the view that the books should not be published in Finland.  Rauhala mentioned content of the book, including drug use, nudity, smoking, alcohol, and strong language.
The publisher had removed references to tobacco and alcohol, as well as the strongest language from the translation. As for drug use, the publisher said that the books portrayed illegal drugs in a negative light.
The Wicca religion proved to be the deciding factor in the matter.

 “We do not want to promote any individual religion or political ideology in the books that we target toward children”, says the publisher’s CEO Jens Otto Hansen.
He said that the publisher was not familiar with Wicca. “I only learned on Monday morning that such a thing as Wicca exists.”
Hansen sees the case as an “industrial accident” for the publisher.   “Our own routines have failed in this. We have acted too quickly.”  

Hansen himself learned about the Wiccan content only on Monday, but admits that already last week one of the company’s employees had raised the issue of the books’ content.“Clearly one of our employees have raised the issue outside our company as well. It is not pleasant for our matters to come into the public eye in this manner.”
While the publisher is withdrawing the book, Hansen disagrees with Rauhala’s point of view.  “An enthusiastic politician has latched on to this and tried to turn it into something different. I cannot share her views in any way.”
Hansen emphasises that the decision to cancel the publication was the publisher’s own.  “We are not forced by those who want to protect their own beliefs any more by those who want to advance freedom of expression. We decide ourselves what kinds of products to produce.”
Written by Cate Tiernan, the Sweep series comprises 15 novels for young people. The main character is an American teenage girl by the name of Morgan Rowlands, who learns that she is a witch. In the series she is searching for her place in a new type of world. The original series was published in 2001-2003. It has appeared in the United States, Britain, Belgium, The Netherlands, Australia, Italy, and France. 

Original Article