Symbols are constantly recycled in society and religion. Their meanings evolve over time and can differ from belief system to belief system. A pentacle/pentagram is one of those symbols that has picked up a whole lot of baggage over the years. Beginner Wiccans often come to our religion having to ‘reprogram’ their own way of thinking about the pentagram. For years, pop culture, media hysteria and other religions have drilled the idea into our heads that Pagan symbols are bad, and the pentagram is evil.
Unfortunately, in a lot of books aimed at Wicca for beginners, more misinformation about the pentagram is spread. This time, it errs on the side of trying to make the pentagram look good, attaching to it all kinds of romanticized ideas that are just not factual.
What is a pentagram? What is a pentacle? Is there a difference? Let’s have a closer look at the history of this symbol, and the meaning of the pentagram today.
WHAT IS A PENTAGRAM?
A good place to begin anytime you’re trying to understand a word and its usage is to hit the dictionary and look up the entomology of the word. The word pentagram is rooted in the Greek.
Instead of giving you my own interpretations, I’ll take the meaning directly from the dictionary:
MEANING OF A PENTAGRAM: A BRIEF HISTORY
The earliest use of the pentagram we know of is from ancient Sumeria– but it wasn’t a religious Pagan symbol. It was a word in their language that meant a corner or angle (due to the 5 sharp angles in the figure).
In the 6th century BCE, Pherecydes of Syros used it to illustrate the five recesses of the cosmology. Pentagram figures occasionally turned up in the far East as well, due to the 5 Chinese elements: wood, fire, earth, metal, water.
Pythagoras went on to use the pentagram as the symbol of man. Partly it was because the shape represented a human standing with his arms spread wide (the top point being the head, the to outer points the arms, and the bottom two points the legs). It was also considered to represent the 5 elements that the Greeks believed made up the physical body: Earth (matter), Air (breath), Fire (energy), Water (fluids) and Aether (the psyche or soul). When Pythagoras’ school was driven underground, students used the pentagram as a secret symbol to identify each other.
In ancient Judaism it was a symbol found in mysticism, related to the top portion of the Tree of Life in the Kabbalah, it stood for the 5 books of the Torah (what Christians refer to as the Pentateuch in the Old Testament of the Bible) and the symbol was featured in a seal representing the secret names of God.
Early Christians into the middle ages used the pentagram heavily as a symbol for Christ’s five wounds. The star of Bethlehem that lead the wise men to the baby Jesus was believed to be the pentagram. In Authorial legends, you’ll often see the symbol of the Pentagram inscribed on knight’s shields and other things—these were actually Christian, not Pagan, references. Christians thought of the pentagram as a protective amulet, and it was the primary symbol of Christianity back then, even more common than the cross.
So the pentagram had a long, ancient history of uses as a Pagan symbol and Judeo-Christian symbol. It had no single meaning. It represented perfection in mathematics, the human body, words, and was also used in religious ritual and magic.
BUT WHAT ABOUT WITCHES, WICCANS, AND SATANISTS?
So I’ve mentioned that just about everyone had used the pentagram back then, except I haven’t mentioned Witches, Wiccans and Satanists. What about them?
The fact is, they didn’t really exist yet. The only “witches” at the time were the kind of folklore and rumor. Oh, don’t get me wrong—there were people who did magick, but they would not have identified with the term “witch”.
WHEN THE PENTAGRAM BECAME ASSOCIATED WITH “EVIL”
The 14th and 15th century saw the rise of occult practices that were rooted in Judeo-Christian symbolism and mysticism, and they borrowed liberally from many of the symbols, including the pentagram. They also borrowed from Gnostic and Paganism symbols. It’s no small surprise Ceremonial Magicians were accused by the Christian church of heresy. And heresy, to a medieval Christian, barrels down to Paganism, Satan worship and witchcraft.
Anything liberally used by Ceremonial Magicians became associated with anything considered heretical. If you don’t want to be associated with such things, you don’t use their symbols.
By Victorian times, the witch hunt craze was ending, and people started to forget how pentagrams were once very common, prominent Christian symbols. It’s now associated with paganism, Satan and witchcraft, and seen as an evil symbol.
The love of romanticized myth and history drive a new movement: the Pagan revival, and the pentagram gets turned around again. This is where it gets confusing, because misinformation and false histories begin to fly liberally from the late 19th to mid-20th century.
This is the time the Pagan Revival begins (mostly a re-invention than a re-construction of “Old Ways”). This is when Margaret Murray published her theories on ancient Witch cults being peaceful Pagan religions—though her works have been completely debunked since. This is when Gerald Gardner founded Wicca, and people came crawling out of the woodwork claiming to be ‘hereditary Witches’, or claiming their coven was ancient, or claiming some unbroken line to the Pagan religions of antiquity. This is also when a few ‘reverse Christian’ groups popped up, with practices specifically designed to mock and rebel against Christianity (those these groups were pretty rare and the NeoPagan community did their best to distance themselves from such groups).
One thing most of these groups have in common, though, is that they adopt the pentagram.
Hollywood – new on the scene in the mid-20th century – adopts the pentagram as well. Hollywood is not interested in accuracy; it’s interested in the shock value of things. They adopt it as a symbol for evil magic and reverse-Christian style devil worship and stick it into just about every horror movie conceivable. This fuels the antics of a lot of bored, rebellious people, particularly teens, who like to spray paint it on park walls and carve it into trees for the shock value.
By the late 20th century, the pentagram is being used and abused all over the place, but it is Hollywood who manages to make an indelible imprint on the social consciousness—and this is further driven by the media with sensationalized reporting during the 1970’s “Satanic Ritual Abuse” hysteria (which has also been debunked).
It’s only the tail end of the 20th century and the beginning of the 21st century in which the pentagram is finally gaining some understanding. Though mainstream society hasn’t completely lost the ‘kneejerk reaction’ to it, the growth of the Pagan Revival and the availability of information via the Internet have helped to quell some of the shock value and fears over it.
WICCAN SYMBOLS: PENTAGRAM VS. PENTACLE
More misconceptions abound, considering the Pagan community more commonly refers to the symbol as a ‘pentacle’ rather than a ‘pentagram’. Many books and websites have tried (and failed) to make the distinction clear. Some assertions I’ve read in passing are:
The pentagram is evil with one point down
the pentacle is good with one point up
The pentagram is just the star
the pentacle is the star with a circle around it
The pentagram is 2-D; the pentacle is 3-D
Actually, all of these answers would be technically incorrect. If you look at the definitions provided above, pentagram and pentacle are synonymous, and have nothing to do with which way the points face, or whether or not they have a circle around them.
A look at the dictionary’s answer to pentacle and you see that the only real difference is one is derived from the Greek, the other from the Latin:
DICTIONARY MEANING OF A PENTACLE:
THE PENTACLE: NOT JUST A FIGURE, BUT A TOOL
A tool arose out of ceremonial magic. This tool was a flat, round disc or paper that was inscribed with protective symbols (a pentagram could be inscribed on it, but there were other symbols they used as well). It is used as an amulet of warding and power because a large part of Ceremonial Magic is invoking and commanding various entities from Judeo-Christian beliefs.
It was called the pentacle or sometimes pantacle. On the Tarot (a Christian-origin divination system), the symbol is used for the suit of coins, and it represents the Element of Earth.
Wicca and other NeoPagan religions borrowed this tool from Ceremonial Magic. They kept the name, but re-defined its purpose since Wiccans don’t believe in Judeo-Christian entities and is not concerned with calling or commanding spirits.
The pentacle (the disc) was adopted as an altar tool, and is used to symbolize the Element of Earth on the altar. It’s also used as a tool for placing sacred items upon it when cleansing, consecrating or charging them.
The Wiccan symbol of choice for this round disc was the pentagram/pentacle. To further confuse things, this tool does not have to be inscribed with a pentagram/pentacle.
TYPICAL MEANING OF A PENTAGRAM/PENTACLE IN WICCA
As far as Wiccan symbols go, the pentagram isn’t a representation of good vs. evil. It’s a symbol of our faith, a symbol of the 5 Elements (one for each point), and the circle (the universe) contains and connects them all. No matter which way it’s facing, circle or no circle, there’s nothing ‘bad’ about it.
Another misconception about the pentagram in Wicca is which way it points. Again, you will find common misinformation that says the pentagram is “evil” if point down and “good” if point up. The point down is most commonly associated with Satanism, because the largest branch of Satanism (Church of Satan, est. 1966) adopted the inverted pentagram with a goat head inside of it as their symbol.
It’s traditionally used both point up and point down. Point up pentagrams are more common; but point down pentagrams are not considered evil at all.
The point-up pentagram represents the spirit ascending above matter. The top point represents the Element of Spirit, the other four points represent the four Spiritual Elements.
When a pentagram is point-down, it represents spirit descending into matter. This is most traditionally used in lineage covens during second degree initiations, because it’s at this point of one’s spiritual path that one turns “inward”. You face and challenge your ‘dark side’ – your base emotions, fears, ignorance, prejudices, etc., you deal with them and develop mastery over yourself.
i had to ask someone but do you think there'll be a day where shiro becomes the black lions paladin and keith the red lions paladin again? i really miss those times :/ i want shiro to still be a paladin somehow...
i think there are two possible scenarios here: either real shiro comes back and keith and he share the black lion (or he steps aside for keith) OR, and this is pretty out there, there might be a sixth lion.
this is a wall carving we see in season 3. at first i thought the lion off to the side was a random detail, but a lot of people noticed it. it looks like it might be an entirely separate lion. it’s probably, definitely not that deep, but…
this is the white lion, from the voltron comic. it shows up hidden on arus after the other lions fall into an alternate dimension (cough). i’m really going out on a limb here, but i really like this idea. shiro’s always been set apart from the other paladins in personality and story in some cool ways, and of course 白 = white. maybe that’s where black sent him? maybe he’ll show up on a white horse in a white lion and sweep keith off his feet save voltron.
unfortunately, i think the aesthetic match of everyone having the correct color scheme for their respective lion is gone for good. i’m really hoping the lion swap was a kind of bait and switch, but it doesn’t seem to be going that way. at least black and red go together nicely.
Aries: A crew of pirates that hail from a port city overrun with corruption. Their acts of disobedience put the crew at risk of being silenced forever so they escaped to the sea to develop their plan. They deliver supplies to residents of the city in the form of food and basic necessities as well as weapons for the brewing rebellion. The crew is on the run from corrupt officials but viewed as protectors by civilians.
Taurus: No other crew has been at sea as long as this one. This pirate crew is composed of several families that have sailed the same huge ship for countless decades. Their extensive knowledge of the sea is made clear by all the riches they have acquired and the jewels that dangle from their bodies. Other crews regard them with deep respect, making them pseudo-royalty in the seafaring world.
Gemini: A playful crew of master tricksters, sailing the world on a ship unlike any other–the crew constructed and repaired it as they traveled, which resulted in a ship with parts from all around the globe. The eclectic ship suits the crew well because each member joined the crew at a different location, creating a very diverse group. Days on the ship are filled with discussions, pranks, and learning about each member’s past life on land.
Cancer: The youngest known pirate crew. However, what they lack in years they make up for in courage and compassion. This ocean-eyed bunch boarded their ship and sailed away from a tragic past in a destroyed city. The crew protects each other from the dangers of the sea and takes in any lost children they encounter. Often underestimated for their youth and kindness, the crew surprises other pirates by coming to the rescue when another crew is in need.
Leo: These pirates sail in a ship plated with gold, crowned with ruby red sails and led by a beautifully carved marble lion figurehead. On board, the crew enjoys all the riches of the world, from diamond rings to emerald-crusted goblets. Exotic animals roam the deck, tigers and leopards dozing in the open sun and lionesses standing regally at the side of each crew member. It is considered an honor for your city to be visited by these pirates.
Virgo: Pirates that keep their ship docked in rocky caves with crystal-covered walls carved out of cliffs by ocean waves. These secret caves are also home to the crew’s legacy: tunnels leading to rooms filled with books written by crew members long passed, tables littered with hand drawn maps, and unique inventions and creations from all over the world. These pirates are known as the first to map the Seven Seas.
Libra: Pirates who drifted away from civilization and became overcome by the beauty of the world. The crew can be found on islands with their immaculate ship anchored nearby, dancing in ankle deep water on white sand beaches to music made with their own handmade instruments. Seashells and pearls are tangled in their hair and they sip a beverage similar to wine.
Scorpio: This pirate crew is known by most people as half reality and half folk lore because they are rarely sighted and never communicate with people outside the crew. The dark sails of their ship loom on the horizon every full moon for only a few moments before they seem to disappear without a trace. People speak of their wild eyes and jewelry made of shimmering fish scales, crystals, and dark gemstones.
Sagittarius: A ragtag band of rogues and outlaws, banished from their homeland for refusing to support a tyrannical ruler. They have been given a bad name by authorities but this reputation could not be further from the truth. This crew remains deeply loyal to each other as they travel the sea and find themselves in risky situations. While battling sea monsters and saving stranded refugees, they risk their lives for each other and constantly display their “all for one and one for all” philosophy.
Capricorn: This pirate crew has roamed farther than any other, reaching the Arctic Circle. They’ve adapted to the freezing climate, living in solitude for most of the year and migrating back to the mainland along the equator only when they need supplies. They are industrious inventors and skilled hunters, but record all their secrets in a coded language that only crew members can decipher.
Aquarius: This pirate crew is known for the strange events that seem to follow them wherever they go–hurricanes suddenly calming when their ship approaches, worldly objects disappearing from their homes and reappearing on board the ship, and the strange way the crew abandons the ship for the sea every night, trading their legs for scaly fish tails in the light of the moon… The crew itself is few in number and each member is of the same rank.
Pisces: A pirate crew that drifts from coast to coast in a ship that reflects the sun in a way that makes it appear to be made of silver. The sails seem to be the color of the ocean itself. These pirates let the stars guide them across the sea, stopping in port cities periodically to trade handmade tapestries for supplies. Their arrival is met with anticipation because most people believe the crew has been gifted with the otherworldly power of clairvoyance.
You saw everything ugly in me that I desperately tried to hide from you. All my flaws and annoying outbursts. My depression. The huge black, rotting hole in my heart that I tired to paint over with kindness and love but every time the despair proved to be too strong. I tried to tell you, and warn you before my stupid heart wrote your name on its walls, carved it in its floors and spread it in the air. But you fought everything I told you. How I was not made to be loved goddammit yet you said otherwise. And my silly little heart believed you. You gave it false hope. You gave it something to cling to then you tore it away! Smiling while you did it. Giving cold hearted a whole new meaning. You left it in a pit. Snatching all the happiness from the few things that made it happy. Now it just bleeds your name, over and over again
Ste. Anne de Beaupré was a long standing parish in London.
Old. Settled. Desperately trying to keep up with the times.
She stood outside it’s gate waiting for Jamie to get off the phone.
Well, waiting for Jamie to stop pacing and shouting into the phone.
“What d’ye mean I’m to leave off?” Jamie ran a hand through his hair making the copper tones glint and flash in the afternoon sun.
“We don’t need trouble with the Catholic Church, James. You don’t have a warrant to search the school.” Detective Chief Inspector Grey’s voice was like ice. Jamie couldn’t understand why he was blocking this investigation.
“I’m no’ here to cause trouble. A boy is deid. His father’s in jail yet still refuses to speak to us. Another boy passed two days ago. Ye have to admit the circumstances are suspicious, to say the least. I’m just going to look around!” Jamie looked at Claire and shrugged dramatically.
“And with whom are you investigating?” Grey looked out of his office window. He knew the answer already.
Jamie paused. His eyes narrowed. He could feel the anger bubbling. Fuck you, John Grey. But he answered him honestly nonetheless.
“I brought the M.E. Dr. Claire Randall.”
“Of course you did. Because she’s a detective. Because she has so much experience in field work. Because -”
“BECAUSE -” Jamie shouted, then lowered his voice when John stopped talking, “she has a keen mind and a keener eye.” Jamie took a deep breath and tried to unclench his jaw.
“I’m going into this school. Sir.” he said as an after thought. “I’ll be speaking to Father Anselm, the Head Master. And then I’ll report back in.”
Jamie disconnected the call.
The phone rang again almost immediately. Jamie muted it. Stuffed the phone in his pocket.
“Jamie maybe we shouldn’t -” the last thing Claire wanted was to see Jamie in trouble.
“I’ll do the talkin’, ken?” he pushed open the gate. “Ye just let me know what ye see.”
“So what do you think, Dr. Fraser?” The priest looked over at the woman. Perhaps she didn’t hear him. “Dr. Fraser?” he said louder.
“Claire,” Jamie spoke. “Honey. Father is speaking to ye.”
Claire whipped around. Oh, God. She hadn’t caught her name. Dr. Fraser, indeed. Jamie raised an eyebrow at her, willing her to answer.
She played with the ring on her left hand. Jamie’s father’s ring. He wore it on his little finger. She now wore it on her wedding ring finger.
It felt strange.
The vision it induced, stranger still.
“Well, it’s quite an old building, isn’t it? But the Science Lab saves it, to be honest.” She gave Father Anselm a small, tight smile.
Honestly. How does he do this? Undercover work, pretending to be someone else. Rather be elbows deep resecting a tumour.
“The recent updates have been a blessing. Your child is interested in Science?” Father asked politely as he led them back out into the courtyard.
“Isn’t every child?” Jamie said, and smiled. “Might we see the grounds?”
He changed the subject. He had been quite adept up to this point of dancing around the question of a child. And after Grey’s outburst he dared not pretend there was one.
With Claire wearing his ring, the quiet, grave woman at reception assumed they were married. When he asked for a tour from the Head Master she introduced them as Mr. and Mrs. Fraser. He simply mentioned Claire was a doctor.
No lies told.
The long black cassock floated over the uneven cobbles as the priest walked in front of them.
Speaking back over his shoulder he said, “We’ve good teachers here. And a strong community of parents.”
“Well, that’s wonderful, isn’t it Claire?” When she didn’t answer Jamie turned around.
Claire stood off to the side of the courtyard. Her body rigid. Eyes fixed.
Jesus, God, let me get there afore she stumbles, he thought. He took three steps towards her before she spoke.
Loudly. Firmly. Aggressively.
“What is in there?” Her head turned slowly towards Father Anselm. Her eyes were cold. Her features, defiant. She was daring him to lie to her.
She already knew.
Father Anselm moved towards her, his manner as friendly as ever.
“Oh! Yes, well, that used to be a small chapel. We don’t use it, of course. It’s old…much too dangerous to go in there. It’s part of the original monastery, you know.”
Father looked around fondly over the grounds. “So much history here.”
Claire walked towards the weathered wooden door. “James would love to see it. He’s quite a history buff, aren’t you, darling?”
Jamie took his cue. “Could we, Father?”
“Well, I’m not sure,” Father Anselm said. “I’m certain it’s locked. At the very least boarded up from the inside, I’m afraid.” He moved towards the building.
Claire followed as if mesmerized.
Mary, Michael and Bride. Now is not the time for one o’ those visions that brings her to her knees.
Father Anselm pushed slowly on the door.
The ease with which it opened surprised the clergyman.
Rustic didn’t begin to describe the inside. The old altar was one step up from the red tile floor. The chairs were wood and wicker. Prie-Dieu chairs, they called them. It was cold. Candles lined the back of the wall around a vividly carved crucifix and a painting of The Divine Mercy.
It all looked very normal. Very monastic.
And very recently used.
Father Anselm stepped into the ancient room, muttering to himself.
Jamie stepped up behind Claire. Close behind her. Just in case.
She stepped down into the chapel.
Then she started to shake.
Shake like she was standing outside, naked, in the middle of a December night.
Her teeth chattered. Her muscles spasmed. She felt Jamie’s arm curl around her shoulder. He pushed her two steps forward and sat her in a chair. Conversation hummed around her but she couldn’t concentrate fully to hear it.
Jamie was roaming around the small, close room. Scanning. Searching. Noticing.
Metal rings under the edge of the altar table. Straps in a side drawer. Oils. Incense. Crucifixes. Holy Water vessels. Rosary beads. Bible.
And traces of blood.
She dropped her head. She knew now.
Father Anselm was not the problem. But someone at this school was. And they needed to work fast.
“Father,” Jamie said to the confused, worried old cleric. “Ye do realize I’m going to need to call this in.”
Jamie put Claire in a squad car, leaning across to help her shaking hands buckle the seat belt. Unnoticed by others he kissed her lightly on the forehead.
“I’ll be over as soon as I can. Promise.” He withdrew from the vehicle, and gave the officer her address, along with a series of instructions.
While she waited Claire looked up at the school.
A chill shivered down her spine again. The woman at reception was looking out the window at her. Spine straight. Dull grey clothes. Lifeless eyes.
Claire watched as the woman placed her hand on the glass, palm flat.
Claire saw her suddenly, in that chapel. Rosary in hand. Eyes shut. Blackness dancing around the room. Her words, chanting. Deliver us from evil. Miserere mei, Deus.
Claire placed her hand on the window of the car in empathy.
She jumped when the officer slammed the door. The engine started and off they went.
The woman watched her until she fell out of sight.
D.C. Mohr and D. C. MacKenzie arrived with the forensics team. They oversaw the bagging of the religious articles. Watched as the team took swabs of the darker spots on the altar that resembled blood.
Jamie took a formal statement from Father Anselm. There was one thing of which he was certain. The priest was blissfully ignorant of the goings on at his school. He did what he could to wrap up the scene. He sat in his car and watched the forensics truck pull away. He waved off Mohr and MacKenzie.
One thing left to do before he could check on Claire.
He walked onto his floor at New Scotland Yard with his anger simmering. He headed straight to his Chief Inspector’s office. Stepping into John Grey’s room, he shut the door behind him.
“What the hell, Fraser?”
Jamie ignored him. He walked over to a small side table and pulled it out into the middle of the room. The chess board was already set up. Jamie pulled over a chair, took off his jacket and draped it over the back. Then, he sat.
And waited for his boss to join him.
John Grey stood. Threw his pen on the desk. Reluctantly came out from behind it. Pulled a chair over and sat down heavily. Made the first move.
They played in silence for ten minutes.
Finally, Jamie spoke.
“I dinna need yer permission,” he said softly.
“You’ve lost your perspective. Your decisions are…compromised.” D.C.I. Grey moved his queen’s bishop. “Whisky?”
“I thank ye.” Jamie leaned over the board. Lost in thought.
Grey stood up and poured them both a drink.
“James. You cannot take the M.E. out on police business. I forbid it.”
“It’s your move, Chief Inspector.” Jamie took a sip from the glass that was offered.
Grey walked around the table and sat, glass in hand. He leaned over to take a pawn, and smiled.
Jamie sat as still as marble. He finally drew a long breath.
“A long time ago we sat here. Played chess.” He moved a rook. “And ye took a liberty ye shouldn’t have.” Jamie’s blue eyes pinned Grey to his chair.
Grey knew that look. He’d seen it once before. Feared it. Feared that he had lost his career when that gaze struck him like a blow.
“I didna say a word to anyone. I simply told ye to take yer hand off me.”
“Or you would kill me,” Grey added.
“Aye.” Jamie took another drink and drained his glass. “So. Understand. I willna have ye tell me what I can and canna do with Claire.”
“Why, James?” Grey couldn’t keep the slight pleading from his voice. Hated himself for it, but could not stop it. “She’s really not that special.”
He did not expect James’ reaction. Could not have predicted it.
Jamie stood and in one smooth motion grasped the edge of the small table, and flipped it forward.
Chess pieces flew. Caught Grey in the face. He didn’t move fast enough and the edge of the table caught his knee. The pain shot through John. He dropped his glass and it shattered.
John looked up into the dark blue gaze. He couldn’t look away, or blink.
Jamie grabbed his jacket, and without a sound, left the room.
i love harry potter (as do we all) and like most im incredibly disappointed with the lack of multiculturalism in it and i havent been able to stop thinking about how wizarding communities in different cultures might evolve. some cultures are much more in touch with spirituality and magic, so the wizarding community doesnt have to be as repressed everywhere as it is in england. so… think about it?
spell casting in different languages!! tonal languages like chinese. if i know anything from 5 years learning mandarin its that intonation can change your meaning completely… a transfer student attending the beijing wizarding school. theyre doing charms and accidentally get the tones wrong. the only thing you hear is their chinese classmates yelling “nO NO NONONO-” before they all get turned into frogs
big wizarding families with ancient lineage having had generations living in hidden hutongs across chinese cities!
what about all those stories of old emperors sending envoys out to search for the key to immortality - and this brings up the interesting possibilities of intersections between magic and traditional medicine!
you know how bats are a symbol of good luck in china? and black cats are symbols of good luck in japan? yeah
also screw the gross western conflation of blackness with evil, with corruption. screw the death eaters with their “dark marks”. many cultures see white as death, as emptiness, and black as richness, as life. wizarding communities finding power in the darkness of the night
what about indian wizards and witches? theyre big on scientific magic (unlike the incredibly scientifically backward communities in england) bc for centuries india and the middle east had the greatest scientific developments in the world
indian wizards/witches making breakthroughs in astronomy through their charmed instruments and maps that rotate with their view of the skies!
hindu wizards using mehndi to form magical symbols on their skin
and what about tattoos and piercings across cultures! so many communities across africa and south america and the pacific that have long histories with tattoos. imagine tattoos glowing while they spellcast.
young witches and wizards earning tattoos as they grow… the tattoos grow organically and shift and change
and its incredible bc all different cultures would have completely different approaches to spellcasting at all!! what if wizards across the world dont generally use wands? some use staffs or their bare hands or scrolls or even their eyes!
inuit magical communities!! conjuring fire for warmth. keeping seals and wolves as familiars. using ice and water in their magic and hunting in the icy waters by transforming into animagi
wizards and witches in the amazon who are hidden from the rest of the world. they use plants to their advantage by merging into foliage or slipping into shadows, leaving no trace behind at all. they nurse their ecosystems back to life
east asian wizards using martial arts to strengthen their magical abilities or to duel
and what about the possibilities in art across different cultures!! old japanese woodblock prints that oscillate and move around. wall carvings in hindu temples dancing and walking around
kashmiri and pakistani wizards with eye colours that subtly shift and change depending on what magic theyre performing
hieroglyphics in ancient egyptian wizarding communities!! they often have cat familiars too
nomadic communities living in scorching deserts… wearing shimmering fabrics, almost appearing to be mirages themselves bc they can bend and twist light
viking wizards exploring the world on ships!! powered by wind they harness themselves by performing incredibly powerful coordinated spells. especially strong norse wizards could harness lightning
maori magical communities and southeast asian communities and pacific islanders taking care of reefs. they can manipulate air and water to travel deep below the surface of the ocean
magical communities atop the himalayas in monasteries. they protect muggle climbers from avalanches and heal climbers who have been wounded
wizards/witches in the swiss alps who are animagi. they transform into saint bernards and form strong bonds with explorers
im just in love with wizarding communities across the globe evolving separately and having different relationships to spirituality because!! nothing is ever black and white but the world is vast and diverse and there are ten thousand sights that could blow you away and how tiring that the only glimpse into wizarding communities we receive is the drab and repressed one in the UK
Do you think the way Keith reacted to losing Shiro in s3 is meant to be taken as a contrast against Pidge losing Matt in showing what a sibling-like relationship is and is not? Or is it not a fair comparison considering 1) they have v different personalities and 2) Pidge had had more time to cope with her loss?
this is honestly a really fascinating question? they do have really different personalities, but i think it’s bigger than that. i mean, this is the second time keith has had to deal with this. when katie loses her family to kerberos, she goes off. she definitely doesn’t believe matt is dead–or she refuses to believe the garrison is telling her everything, and she’s tireless in trying to find answers.
whatever happened with keith, we don’t have any evidence that he believed shiro was alive after kerberos. it seems like he would have tried to get some answers out of the garrison. and maybe he did, and maybe that’s why he got kicked out, but…
wandering around the desert looking for prophecies in wall carvings? that’s not keith trying to get answers or believing shiro is still alive–that’s keith grieving. it’s really hard to even contrast it with katie’s situation because she never believed matt and her father were dead, but even if she did it’s hard to believe she would deal with their loss the way keith did.
i mean, he literally believes that if he doesn’t have shiro, he has no one. this entire show is about found family, but we get these contrasts almost every episode between how keith and shiro interact with each other versus how they interact with the rest of the paladins–and how the other paladins interact with each other. he’s precious to keith to an almost unbelievable degree, and theirs is a relationship unique within the show (with one notable exception).
so in season 3, when shiro goes missing again, he’s not willing to accept it at all. it’s probably been months, but he still won’t even entertain a conversation about shiro’s loss, evenjust about needing someone to pilot the black lion. i mean, he mourned shiro, got him back, and spent two seasons trying to protect him, and the show emphasizes this over and over again. seriously… i have 152 screenshots of keith freaking out over shiro and that’s not even all of them. i think short of actually seeing shiro’s corpse, he wouldn’t accept shiro’s loss twice–and even then, i can’t imagine him actually accepting it in a healthy way. that’s not something we see between any other two characters in the show… except zarkon and honerva.