Session Title

Genuine Survivals, Cute Theories, and Wishful Thinking: Sorting Wheat from Chaff in Medieval Scholarship about Polytheism

Sponsoring Organization(s)

Polytheism-Oriented Medievalists of North America (P-OMoNA)

Organizer Name

Phillip A. Bernhardt-House

Organizer Affiliation

Skagit Valley College-Whidbey Island/Columbia College-Whidbey Island

Presider Name

Daniel Attrell

Presider Affiliation

Univ. of Waterloo

Paper Title 1

Filid and Pharoahs, Shamans and Scythians: Deciphering Displays of Poetic Skill in Lebor Gabála Érenn

Presenter 1 Name

Sharon Paice MacLeod

Presenter 1 Affiliation

Eólas ar Senchais Research Project

Paper Title 2

Incubation, Inspiration, Incantation, or Invention?: The Imbas Forosnai Ritual in Sanas Cormaic as Divinatory Operation

Presenter 2 Name

Phillip A. Bernhardt-House

Start Date

9-5-2020 10:00 AM

Session Location

Valley 3 Stinson 306

Description

Evidence from Insular Celtic (especially Irish and Welsh) sources has been heavily employed in attempting to understand the pre-Christian religious cultures and theologies of Celtic peoples, sometimes in concert with Romano-British/Gaulish artifacts and epigraphy. But, since many of the scholars engaged in this work are atheists or monotheists with often unacknowledged (anti-) religious biases, and may be excellent philologists yet lack any training in religious studies, how trustworthy are their findings, which then sometimes inspire and influence modern polytheists in their own pursuits of spiritual development?

This session will focus upon both “the good” and “the questionable” in terms of such studies produced through the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, how these have been accepted or dismissed within their individual disciplinary discourses, and likewise how these flawed or fair assessments of the material have been deployed in modern pagan and polytheistic writings and practices. Phillip A. Bernhardt-House

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May 9th, 10:00 AM

Genuine Survivals, Cute Theories, and Wishful Thinking: Sorting Wheat from Chaff in Medieval Scholarship about Polytheism

Valley 3 Stinson 306

Evidence from Insular Celtic (especially Irish and Welsh) sources has been heavily employed in attempting to understand the pre-Christian religious cultures and theologies of Celtic peoples, sometimes in concert with Romano-British/Gaulish artifacts and epigraphy. But, since many of the scholars engaged in this work are atheists or monotheists with often unacknowledged (anti-) religious biases, and may be excellent philologists yet lack any training in religious studies, how trustworthy are their findings, which then sometimes inspire and influence modern polytheists in their own pursuits of spiritual development?

This session will focus upon both “the good” and “the questionable” in terms of such studies produced through the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, how these have been accepted or dismissed within their individual disciplinary discourses, and likewise how these flawed or fair assessments of the material have been deployed in modern pagan and polytheistic writings and practices. Phillip A. Bernhardt-House