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An examination of Samhain and Beltane rituals in contemporary pagan practice

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An examination of Samhain and Beltane rituals in contemporary pagan practice

Manson, Bruce (2006) An examination of Samhain and Beltane rituals in contemporary pagan practice. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

Practitioners of contemporary Paganism celebrate eight annual festivals marking the passing of the seasons and changes in the natural world. The research presented here examines the ways in which the rituals marking two of these festivals, Samhain and Beltane, are meaningful to followers of Neo-Paganism. It is the primary thesis of this work that the meaningfulness of these rituals lies in the fact that they are a vehicle to personal growth and transformation for participants; on another level, they allow men and women dissatisfied with, or unfulfilled by, particular aspects of the dominant western culture to dissent from that culture in key ways. This is demonstrated through accounts of observations of Samhain and Beltane rituals, and interviews with celebrants. This is also shown by viewing these ceremonies through the models of ritual presented by a number of scholars. It is suggested that despite this distancing of self from the dominant culture in specific ways, Neo-Pagans are not a marginalized body wholly opposed to, or at odds with, western cultural norms

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Religion
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Manson, Bruce
Pagination:vi, 172 leaves : ill. ; 29 cm.
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A.
Program:Religion
Date:2006
Thesis Supervisor(s):Bird, F
ID Code:8886
Deposited By:Concordia University Libraries
Deposited On:18 Aug 2011 14:38
Last Modified:18 Aug 2011 15:05
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