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Kindle the Magic Flame: Contemporary Paganism and Ireland’s Sacred Landscape

This is a past event.

Thursday, June 10 at 2:00pm

Virtual Event

“Kindle the magic flame,” a line from Irish poet George William Russell’s “A New Theme,” might conjure the image of the practice of lighting bonfires on Ireland’s sacred hills. Today, members of the Irish Pagan community visit sacred sites of pre-Christian Ireland to practice ritual and celebrate the sabbats — the eight festivals of the ritual year cycle. Structures known as “hollow hills” are associated with the otherworld or spiritual realm of Irish tradition. “Fairy places” like hawthorn trees and archaeological sites such as ringforts are similarly significant in Pagan worldview, discourse and ritual practice.

Join us for a conversation with Dr. Jenny Butler, as we explore contemporary Pagan engagement with the sacred Irish landscape. Dr. Butler conducted the first ever ethnographic study of Irish contemporary Paganism, which will be published as the monograph 21st Century Irish Paganism: Worldview, Ritual, Identity, forthcoming from Routledge. Her research interests include new religious movements, Western esotericism, and folk religion.


This event is hosted by the Program in the Study of Spirituality in collaboration with the European and Eurasian Studies Program


Opening Remarks: 
Erin Weston
Director, Program in the Study of Spirituality, FIU



Guest Speakers:


Dr. Jenny Butler
Lecturer, Study of Religions Department, University College Cork

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