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Author Topic: Fictional Characters in Religion and Magic.  (Read 21526 times)
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Journeyman
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« Topic Start: September 03, 2008, 01:11:57 am »

There seems to be some connection between religion and storytelling.  Many of histories greatest stories tell about deities and their (mis)adventures.  Is it so strange then that characters from stories could become religious figures?  If the experience feels real does it matter that the entity with whom you interact (supposedly) isn't?  How do you feel about the idea of a whole religion based on such a fiction?  Have you ever worked with a fictional character?  If so, who and how?

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Lusiphelia
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« Reply #1: September 03, 2008, 05:45:27 am »

There seems to be some connection between religion and storytelling.  Many of histories greatest stories tell about deities and their (mis)adventures.  Is it so strange then that characters from stories could become religious figures?  If the experience feels real does it matter that the entity with whom you interact (supposedly) isn't?  How do you feel about the idea of a whole religion based on such a fiction?  Have you ever worked with a fictional character?  If so, who and how?



It's not something I've done yet, because I've never really found a fictional setting and/or characters that I would be comfortable using and/or find useful, but it's something I would do and see no reason why it can't be done.

 As far as the idea of a religion, in newWitch several years ago there was an article written by a girl who worshipped the LOTR characters as deities, and she seemed pretty content, so if it works for you, then great.  Personally I'm not sure how it would be outside of magickal use, because in the case of magick, you maintain belief long enough for your purposes, and then can discard it afterward.  But then again, what with the making of servitors, egregores, etc, there's really no reason these ... "entities" won't eventually develop into separate beings, if they are not already.  So, I guess yeah it could work, if you're okay worshipping or whatever something you or someone else created.  But then again, maybe that can be applied to all religious thought/deities.

lol Obviously this is something I debate back and forth with myself sometimes.
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« Reply #2: September 03, 2008, 12:25:21 pm »

There seems to be some connection between religion and storytelling.  Many of histories greatest stories tell about deities and their (mis)adventures.  Is it so strange then that characters from stories could become religious figures?  If the experience feels real does it matter that the entity with whom you interact (supposedly) isn't?  How do you feel about the idea of a whole religion based on such a fiction?  Have you ever worked with a fictional character?  If so, who and how?


Centuries from now, they may find info and names of characters that never existed, like legend of Zelda, and they may end up worshipping those "Old Gods" thinking they are somehow honoring an ancient religious system... nintendo entertainment system.  They'll look up the original translation of nin-ten-do and a whole new pagan will be born.
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« Reply #3: September 03, 2008, 08:16:24 pm »

Centuries from now, they may find info and names of characters that never existed, like legend of Zelda, and they may end up worshipping those "Old Gods" thinking they are somehow honoring an ancient religious system... nintendo entertainment system.  They'll look up the original translation of nin-ten-do and a whole new pagan will be born.

I like that.  Ancient literature often tends to be interpreted as religious, it's funny to think that could happen with fiction.
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« Reply #4: September 03, 2008, 08:22:37 pm »

There seems to be some connection between religion and storytelling.  Many of histories greatest stories tell about deities and their (mis)adventures.  Is it so strange then that characters from stories could become religious figures?  If the experience feels real does it matter that the entity with whom you interact (supposedly) isn't?  How do you feel about the idea of a whole religion based on such a fiction?  Have you ever worked with a fictional character?  If so, who and how?




I do sometimes work with Dream (Of Sandman comics).  I perform a specific type of devotion and make offerings.  I usually ask for particular types of guidance/inspiration or dream experiences. 

On rare occasions I also work with Bugs Bunny.

It does not bother me to find others engaging in such practices, I see great potential in this area.  Particularly for self-exploration.


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« Reply #5: September 03, 2008, 09:10:14 pm »

I do sometimes work with Dream (Of Sandman comics).  I perform a specific type of devotion and make offerings.  I usually ask for particular types of guidance/inspiration or dream experiences. 

You do know that the Neil Gaiman character is based off an actual god, right?

I'm skeptical in regards to worshiping fictional characters as deities.  For one, there is definite proof that they came from the head of one person.
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Lusiphelia
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« Reply #6: September 03, 2008, 09:16:42 pm »


I do sometimes work with Dream (Of Sandman comics).  I perform a specific type of devotion and make offerings.  I usually ask for particular types of guidance/inspiration or dream experiences. 



Ah, I've thought about using the Endless from time to time.  What do you do, if I may ask?
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« Reply #7: September 03, 2008, 09:20:15 pm »

You do know that the Neil Gaiman character is based off an actual god, right?

I'm skeptical in regards to worshiping fictional characters as deities.  For one, there is definite proof that they came from the head of one person.

I am aware that Dream is based on Morpheus, however I use representations of the character and follow his story from the comics rather than the mythology/representations of the god.  Also, I'm not sure that for me "worship" is the right word.

Fictional characters may come from the head of one person (though in some cases this is debatable), but they are charged and enlivened by the imagination and focus of every person who has ever seen/read/experienced them.  The more popular and long lived the character, the stronger the energy.  Working with such a character is similar to working with Jungian archetypes.  

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« Reply #8: September 03, 2008, 09:21:05 pm »

You do know that the Neil Gaiman character is based off an actual god, right?

I'm skeptical in regards to worshiping fictional characters as deities.  For one, there is definite proof that they came from the head of one person.

True, but if people can create servitors etc (depending on what you believe), then why can't these entities "evolve" into godforms?

And Morpheus/Dream is pretty different from Morpheus.  Gaiman says, I think more than once, that the Endless are not gods, but ... I forget how he puts it, but more or less a "god's god."  They ARE what they are called, not the god of dreams, or goddess of death, they actually embody these concepts.
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« Reply #9: September 03, 2008, 09:23:48 pm »

Ah, I've thought about using the Endless from time to time.  What do you do, if I may ask?

It depends on which one I'm working with.  Generally I will place a representation of them on my alter, burn incense and candles, and talk to them about I want or am trying to do.  With Dream I record my dreams regularly while working with him.
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« Reply #10: September 03, 2008, 09:27:11 pm »

True, but if people can create servitors etc (depending on what you believe), then why can't these entities "evolve" into godforms?

And Morpheus/Dream is pretty different from Morpheus.  Gaiman says, I think more than once, that the Endless are not gods, but ... I forget how he puts it, but more or less a "god's god."  They ARE what they are called, not the god of dreams, or goddess of death, they actually embody these concepts.

Very true.  I think it is a large part of why the characters speak to me so.  I believe that the concept of dream has power in itself, Dream is just a compelling point of access. 
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« Reply #11: September 03, 2008, 09:36:59 pm »

Fictional characters may come from the head of one person (though in some cases this is debatable), but they are charged and enlivened by the imagination and focus of every person who has ever seen/read/experienced them.  The more popular and long lived the character, the stronger the energy.  Working with such a character is similar to working with Jungian archetypes. 

Well, you're talking to someone who thinks Jungian archetypes are bullshit nothing more than pop psychology that shouldn't be taken seriously Wink
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Melamphoros
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« Reply #12: September 03, 2008, 09:41:23 pm »

True, but if people can create servitors etc (depending on what you believe), then why can't these entities "evolve" into godforms?

Servitors are among the things that I don't care much about either way.  Some people believe in them, some people do not, I just don't give a rat's ass.

Quote
And Morpheus/Dream is pretty different from Morpheus.  Gaiman says, I think more than once, that the Endless are not gods, but ... I forget how he puts it, but more or less a "god's god."  They ARE what they are called, not the god of dreams, or goddess of death, they actually embody these concepts.

<takes time to admit that Sandman is one of those things he alway meant to read, but never got around to it>
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« Reply #13: September 03, 2008, 09:43:38 pm »

<takes time to admit that Sandman is one of those things he alway meant to read, but never got around to it>

<Slap>

The Sandman series is something that deserves to have time made for it.  I'm a comic geek who wastes too much time reading too many comics, but even for me it was something completely other, and it was inescapably mesmerizing.
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« Reply #14: September 03, 2008, 09:44:52 pm »

How do you feel about the idea of a whole religion based on such a fiction?  Have you ever worked with a fictional character?  If so, who and how?


Well I made up my own personifications for certain things (e.g. 'Wisdom'). Not sure if you could call it a 'religion' since it's strictly keyed to my preferences (and draws power from being very personal, I think).
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