The Kwakwaka’wakw Hamatsa Ritual

Hamatsa ritualist, 1914 (from Wikipedia)

From Wikipedia: In practice the Hamatsa initiate, almost always a young man at approximately age 25, is abducted by members of the Hamatsa society and kept in the forest in a secret location where he is instructed in the mysteries of the society. Then at a winter dance festival to which many clans and neighboring tribes are invited the spirit of the man-eating giant is evoked and the initiate is brought in wearing spruce bows and gnashing his teeth and even biting members of the audience. Many dances ensue, as the tale of Baxbaxwalanuksiwe is recounted, and all of the giant man-eating birds dance around the fire.

Finally the society members succeed in taming the new “cannibal” initiate. In the process of the ceremonies what seems to be human flesh is eaten by the initiates. Boas describes the hamatsa initiate as eating actual human flesh without chewing. After the ceremony, the initiate is forced to drink large amounts of sea water to induce vomiting, thereby voiding the body of potentially harmful toxins. All persons who were bitten during the proceedings are given expensive presents, and many gifts are given to all of the witnesses who are required to recall through their gifts the honors bestowed on the new initiate and recognize his station within the spiritual community of the clan and tribe.

The Legend of Tsagaglalal (She Who Watches) | Gathering the Stories

A woman was chief of all who lived in this region. That was a long time before Coyote came up the river and changed things, and the people were not yet real people. After a time Coyote, in his travels came to this place and asked the inhabitants if they were living well or ill. They sent him to their chief who lived up in the rocks, where she could look down on the village and know what was going on.

Coyote climbed up to the house on the rocks and asked, “What kind of living do you give these people? Do you treat them well or are you one of those evil women?”

“I am teaching them to live well and build good houses,” she said….

continued The Legend of Tsagaglalal (She Who Watches) | Gathering the Stories.

Chief pagan blesses Icelandic jet – mbl.is

An­cient and mod­ern Ice­land met yes­ter­day evening at Reyk­javik Air­port, as Ice­landic low-cost air­line WOWair held a nam­ing cer­e­mony for one of two brand-new Air­bus A321 air­craft pur­chased by the air­line. The guests of ho­n­our at the event were Dor­rit Mous­saief, First Lady of Ice­land, and Hilmar Örn Hilmars­son, high priest of the Ice­landic neo-pa­gan re­li­gious as­so­ci­a­tion, Ásatrúar­félagið.

via Chief pagan blesses Icelandic jet – mbl.is.

The Eleusinian Mysteries and Other Mystery Religions

The Eleusinian Mysteries and Other Mystery Religions by Jeremy Naydler, Ph.D.

The Eleusinian mysteries were celebrated from at least the eighth century B.C. at Eleusis, near Athens, and continued into the Hellenistic period. While there is some reason to believe that they were established at a much earlier date—in the second half of the fifteenth century B.C.—and that their origin was Egyptian, neither an earlier dating nor an Egyptian origin is accepted by the majority of scholars today, for lack of firm evidence. Nevertheless, the possibility of an earlier Egyptian origin of the Eleusinian mysteries should not be dismissed out of hand, and there are some who have no difficulty with this view. But whether or not they had an Egyptian origin
is a side issue to the present argument. Eleusis was just one of many mystery centers that flourished throughout the Greek and Greco-Roman world.