CHICAGO — Small protests disrupted th is year’s World Hindu Congress held in Chicago. Protesters charged that several speakers have links to fascists and have promoted violence against Muslims in India. According to the protesters, World Hindu Congress attendees choked, kicked, and spat on them. Several Indian-American elected officials dropped out of participation. Chicago police arrested two protesters and one counter-protester.
Paganism is not a “religion of the book,” but it is a religion of many books. Here’s a look at some recent releases of interest to Pagans, Polytheists and Heathens: a Scandinavian’s travels in esoteric India, a young adult novel inspired by Yoruba religion, an examination of Odin’s influence in modern times, and a tree herbal. Journeys in the Kali Yuga: a Pilgrimage from Esoteric India to Pagan Europe
Aki Cederberg, Destiny Books, December 2017, 172 p.
In the introduction to this spiritual travelogue, Finland native Aki Cederberg writes that “as far back as I can remember, I have been drawn to and felt a strong resonance with certain sights, symbols, and signs, not exactly knowing why. Some of these have been found in the waking world, while others have revealed themselves in visions and dreams . .
There are lots of articles and essays of interest to modern Pagans and Heathens out there, more than our team can write about in depth in any given week. Therefore, The Wild Hunt must unleash the hounds in order to round them all up.
A “seismic political week”
As has adequately been reported throughout mainstream media, the Trump administration generated a number of executive orders and memoranda that are now creating significant backlash and raising concerns in many communities. These orders include, but are not limited to, the revival of the North Dakota Keystone pipeline project, immigration restrictions, and actions to dismantle the Affordable Care Act. To see read more about what the administration has done in what some are calling a seismic week of executive action, read the White House website’s weekly report. While Trump’s first week as president has been punctuated by seemingly non-stop protest and rallies of one kind or another, the pipeline memorandum and immigration orders have generated the most immediate public reaction.
[Editor’s Note: We welcome our newest columnist Karl E. H. Seigfried. His writing will be appearing monthly on the fourth Saturday of every month. For more on Seigfried’s background and interests, check out his bio page.]
On January 30, lawyer Thakur Chandan Kumar Singh filed a domestic violence case in India against Rāma Dasharathi for mistreatment of his wife Sītā. This would likely have not made anything other than the local news, except for one fact: Rāma is the protagonist of the ancient Sanskrit text known as the Rāmāyaṇa, and he is believed by Hindus to be an incarnation of the god Viṣṇu. Composed in India between approximately 300 BCE and 300 CE, and attributed to the poet Vālmīki, the Rāmāyaṇa tells the story of Rāma across 20,000 verses.
When reporting on witchcraft in India, journalists must invariably tell the tragic tale of accusations, persecution and extreme violence. However, there is another side to the practice of Witchcraft, more specifically Wicca, in the country. While most of the victims of witchcraft-related crimes are not actual practitioners, there are Witches and Wiccans thriving in India’s unique and rich culture. The Wild Hunt spoke with Ipsita Roy Chakraverti, arguably India’s most well-known and public Witch. She answered questions about her own journey and about living in a society that struggles with real witchcraft violence.