Aparna Sridhar interviewed me for Soft Power. The questions were stimulating and I really enjoyed it; I hope that you do too.

https://www.softpowermag.com/there-is-a-thirst-for-what-india-alone-can-offer-the-overwhelming-living-presence-of-her-gods-edward-butler-2/

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My article “The Gods and Brahman”, which first appeared in Walking the Worlds Vol. 4, No. 1, Winter 2017, pp. 18-36, is now featured on Indic Today, together with “Bhakti and Henadology”. My thanks again to Indic Academy for showcasing my work on their platform.

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My article “Bhakti and Henadology”, which originally appeared in the Journal of Dharma Studies Vol. 1, No. 1, 2018, pp. 147-161, is now featured on Indic Today. Many thanks to Hari Kiran and the rest of the team at Indic Academy.

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The new issue of Walking the Worlds: A Biannual Journal of Polytheism and Spiritwork is now available, which includes my article “Romanticism and Polytheism: The Modern Gaze  on the Ancient and Non-Western Other,” presented at the 2020 meeting of the American Philosophical Association’s Eastern Division. Here is the abstract:

This paper investigates how Romanticism has determined the approach to the polytheisms of Western antiquity and the continuous polytheistic tradition of India. Impulses toward “Pagan” religiosity in Romantic writers should be taken seriously as challenging the established order in the West, and not merely as an aestheticized atheism. In this era, however, European attitudes toward Hinduism both classical and contemporary were crystallizing, and were informed by reaction to the twin threats of an alien civilization and an alien relationship to the foundations of Western civilization. While the Romantic position tends to elicit our sympathies, the Romantic gaze remains an ambivalent force.

I urge anyone doing work on polytheism to consider submitting it to Walking the Worlds. There are no longer theme issues, so any topic relevant to polytheisms ancient or modern, continuous, revived, or new, from anywhere or nowhere, from a theoretical or practical approach, is welcome. Join us in creating a space for polytheist thought now and for the future. Polytheism will be what you make of it. Please consult the Guidelines.

I am pleased to announce that a major new article of mine appears in the latest issue of the journal Dionysius, and to be able to make it available here. My deepest gratitude, as always, to the editor of Dionysius, Wayne J. Hankey, and to the journal’s hard working editorial staff, for maintaining an outstanding venue for international scholarship on Neoplatonism. It is always an honor for my work to appear in its pages.

“Damascian Negativity,” Dionysius 37 (2019), pp. 114-133.

I would also like to call readers’ attention to two other articles in this issue of Dionysius making significant reference to my work, and which are also available to read online in some form:

Matthew Vanderkwaak, “‘A Shrine for the Everlasting Gods’: Matter and the Gods in Proclus,” pp. 87-113.

Wayne J. Hankey, “Divine Henads and Persons: Multiplicity’s Birth in the Principle in Proclus and Aquinas,” pp. 164-181. (Draft)

 

“Two Models of Polytheism”

November 29, 2019

My essay “Two Models of Polytheism” from Ascendant: Modern Essays on Polytheism and Theology will now be available as a free PDF here:

“Two Models of Polytheism,” pp. 63-80 in Ascendant: Modern Essays on Polytheism and Theology, ed. Michael Hardy (Bibliotheca Alexandrina, 2019).

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The new issue of Walking the Worlds: A Biannual Journal of Polytheism and Spiritwork is now available. Single issues and one-year subscriptions are available from the Subscriptions page. Single issues can also be purchased from Amazon. This issue includes my article, “Egypt’s Returning Goddesses: A Theological Inquiry”. I wish to thank all the contributors, and as always extend my special gratitude to Dver Winter for her beautiful design work. Check out her full slate of affordable book design services at Winged Words Design.

Submissions are now open for the next issue, deadline December 1st. Check the Submission Guidelines page for further information.

I have made available here and on Academia an essay that originally appeared in the second issue of Walking the Worlds. I hope that you enjoy it:

“Universality and Locality in Platonic Polytheism,” Walking the Worlds Vol. 1, No. 2, Summer 2015, pp. 106-118.

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The latest issue of Walking the Worlds: A Biannual Journal of Polytheism and Spiritwork (ISSN 2474-3135) is out, which contains my article “A Metaphysical Reading of Stoic Ekpyrôsis” as well as my review of Pagans and Philosophers:  The Problem of Paganism from Augustine to Leibniz by John Marenbon.

Other articles in this issue include “Opening the Way: A Brief Study of the Standard of Wepwawet in Three Contexts” by Jennifer Wheatley, “To Bow or Not To Bow: Physical Expressions of Piety in Contemporary American Heathenry” by Galina Krasskova, “Wathanism” by Ali Omran, and “Attestations of Set as Re and Creator” by S.E.B. Logan.

Submissions are now invited for the journal’s Summer Solstice issue, deadline June 1st. There are no longer theme issues, and so any articles relevant to ancient or contemporary polytheisms will be considered, as well as pertinent book reviews. Consult the submission guidelines.

An annual subscription gets you 20% off the cover price, but the issue is also available from Amazon.

 

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This volume, which contains my essay “Two Models of Polytheism”, is now available once again, after undergoing needed revisions. From the description on the Bibliotheca Alexandrina site:

Theology, the discipline that analyzes, examines, and seeks to explain religious ideas, is a vibrant area of inquiry. Scholars and philosophers have produced countless works of theology over the past several thousand years.

In the West, however, virtually all theology concerns monotheistic faith systems. Polytheism escapes the notice of most scholars, and those who do address it rarely write books intended for a general, non-academic audience. Polytheology must become its own active discipline if modern Pagan practice is to deepen and grow. Monotheistic assumptions so pervade our culture that even those few people born into polytheist religions (or those who grew up with no religion at all) cannot help but be influenced by them.

Polytheology raises questions that cannot be adequately addressed by answers originally developed in a monotheistic context. Because polytheism is inherently open to variation, the goal of polytheology is not to arrive at a single truth so much as to elucidate the possibilities, to honor and embrace differences, to explore the nature of the Gods and their relationship to humanity. These philosophical ideas provide a greater understanding of the Cosmos, Gods and humanity, and topics such as morality, mortality, and myth.

This volume — with contributions from Edward P. Butler, Patrick Dunn, John Michael Greer, Brandon Hensley, Wayne Keysor, and Gwendolyn Reece — is, we hope, a useful addition to this young but growing field.

Ascendant: Modern Essays on Polytheism and Theology is available in paperback and e-book from Amazon and a number of other retailers.