Public Service sacrifces and offerings

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In the Pagan world when we often speak of sacrifices and offerings we usually refer to stones, candles, food, and flowers. However, I will often hear a brief mention of service sacrifices like donation and volunteering in the name of Gods, but I rarely hear it(From my experinced) truely discussed.

There are some much information about material offerings on the net to even advice on writing hymns and poems dedicated to deties. I am going to state this before I continue, I am not in any way, shape, or form condemining such trypes of offerings or sacerfices.

I am giving discussion to a from of it that is rarely discussed, publics services done in the name of detities. Today, in honor of Lughnasadh, I donated blood, orignally I went to donated platelets, but my count was far too low for it, so it settled on whole blood.

Before she stuck my with the needle, I whispered barely above my breath

“Lady Hestia, I offer this in your name.”

I feel this is appropriate, in acient times the hearth was the center of the family and community, making Hestia in many ways the Goddess of the community.So I feel that any service to the community is a proper offering to her.

What do you think? Have you had any experinces with this yourself? Do you want to do this yourself. Do you think there are certian services that would be apporiate for certian deties or innaporiate.

Please share your thoughts!

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3 responses »

  1. An offer or sacrifice is about giving something back, and giving back to the community isn’t anything less than offering food. Perhaps it is more appropriate at times, because you are more actively helping other people. I don’t have experience with it myself, but though I had never before even considered volunteering as sacrifice, I like the concept 🙂 I work in a nursing home during the holidays, and have seen how much they are in need of volunteers to take people out for a walk or even to talk to them, because the staff doesn’t have time to do it. Once I am settled and have some form of fixed schedule (most of these things do have to be done at a constant day and time, so as not to confuse the people in the nursing home), I plan on doing that once a week. For me, this is about giving back, about offering time and helping people who need it.
    I can’t think of any services that are appropriate for specific deities. Perhaps that cleaning up a forest could be linked to Pan, or swimming with mentally deficient children (a friend of mine does this and loves doing it) may be appropriate as offering to Poseidon. Otherwise I wouldn’t know, but I’m sure every service can be linked to at least one deity.
    Thank you for this new view on community service!

  2. Interesting idea! I never thought to donate a service as a gift to the gods.

    I just thought I’d share a story about when I first tried to donate blood. You made me think of it, and looking back I always have to laugh. I had just turned sixteen and was old enough to donate my blood, so I offered my services during the school day at the blood drive. The woman who was to draw my blood stared at both of my arms for a long moment and grumbled to herself. She felt them both extensively, and at this point I feel violated. “Margaret,” she called. “The girl has no veins at all!” Margaret comes over mumbling that “that is impossible, she has to have veins,” and starts feeling both of my arms. Her brow furrows and she growls, “What the heck? Are you a vampire or something?” So Margaret brings over some friends, and now there are six people (three on either side) desperately examining my arms, feeling me and poking at my flesh to try to find a pulse. Well, I’m claustrophobic, so I panicked and passed out. And now I have a phobia of getting my blood drawn.

    Sorry to waste your time with that, I just had to share. 😛

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