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David19
March 20th, 2006, 01:36 PM
I found a forum for reconstructionists (http://s2.excoboard.com/exco/thread.php?forumid=30776&threadid=105385)and in one of the threads, it lists different skills that some people learn that that their specific religious ancestors practiced (e.g. if your Hellenic reconstructionist, some were also learning skills that the Ancient Greeks practiced as well the religion, etc). So i was just wondering, do any of the reconstructionists here, reconstruct any of the skills or traditions that your religious ancestors practiced, like if your Asatru, do you only reconstruct the religion or are you (or have you) learning different skills that the ancient Norse had, same question for Irish recons, Hellenic, etc.

Would you want to learn any skills or do you only focus on the religious aspect?

Hope that made sense :).

Rasenna
March 20th, 2006, 01:48 PM
Yes. I am learning wood-carving, as that was a craft that was designated to women in ancient Etruria. Fortunately, I have a lot of heathen friends, and woodworking was common in Nordic cultures, so I have free tutors <eg>.
~R

Ishtara
March 20th, 2006, 02:21 PM
I had to learn some basic notions of herbalism/incense making to be able to make my own natron and kyphi incense.

And after several months of studies, I definitely think that learning and drawing hieroglyphics could count as a skill in its own right! :lol:

Other than that, I would be very interested in recreating Ancient Egyptian music. Unfortunately, we still know very little about it but most scholars think that it heavily influenced Coptic liturgic music. I also found instructions to build a sistrum and I will try my hand at it soon.

I would also love to literally "re-construct", ie volunteer with archeologists to help rebuild monuments in Egypt and Nubia. Unfortunately, these positions are highly sought after, so unless one is studying towards a degree in Egyptology and is very well-networked, there is no hope to land them.

Maggie
March 20th, 2006, 03:54 PM
I found a forum for reconstructionists (http://s2.excoboard.com/exco/thread.php?forumid=30776&threadid=105385)and in one of the threads, it lists different skills that some people learn that that their specific religious ancestors practiced (e.g. if your Hellenic reconstructionist, some were also learning skills that the Ancient Greeks practiced as well the religion, etc). So i was just wondering, do any of the reconstructionists here, reconstruct any of the skills or traditions that your religious ancestors practiced, like if your Asatru, do you only reconstruct the religion or are you (or have you) learning different skills that the ancient Norse had, same question for Irish recons, Hellenic, etc.

Would you want to learn any skills or do you only focus on the religious aspect?

Hope that made sense :).

IMO there are two different pieces here. Before the Industrial Revolution, pretty much everything was made by hand. There is indirect evidence for spun thread back 20,000 years. Spinning, weaving, blacksmithing, woodcarving, herbology, etc are pretty universal skills in their basic elements. I have a spindle made of a stick and rock for instance; any woman in any culture that used a bottom whorl spindle would recognize and be able to use it. I do learn some of this stuff specifically to connect with past generations in general, even though I also use modern methods.

There are cultural characteristics of how these skills were practiced, what materials and what decorative elements were common that can be recognized as belonging to different cultures. I first learned to use the bottom whorl spindle, that was the one used where most of my ancestors came from. My intent for the coming year is to learn naalbinding and sprang specifically because they are skills that are typical to Scandinavian cultures. I garden, I tend to choose herbs and even some plants just for fun that are specific to the area most of my ancestors came from for that specific reason. My husband does woodworking and tends to use celtic motifs for family history reasons.

I guess my answer is both yes and no! :T

Maggie

Haerfest Leah
March 20th, 2006, 09:07 PM
I don't have an interest in weaving at all, mine is cooking. I love to cook and am good too. It is definitely categorized as a skill. I obtain recipees & cook books from the areas of my interest (Germany, Belgium & the Celtic lands), I study the origins & history of these foods. A good site for this is http://www.foodtimeline.org/

I take pride in running my home & caring for my family (including healing them when sick) since it was a big part of womens lives then too.

The practice of magic was also the womans domain & I cover that area also.

Driffinna
March 21st, 2006, 03:21 AM
This past January I brewed mead for the first time. I also have worked with metal for jewelry in the past and have wanted to step it up to blacksmithing for a while but don't have the time to take a class.

ap Dafydd
March 21st, 2006, 10:01 AM
Some reconstructionists are also interested in learning/reconstructing the languages.

gwyn eich byd

Ffred

Theres
March 21st, 2006, 11:57 AM
i'm building a stone circle with out the use of modern tools, just ropes and pullies.

Incendia
March 24th, 2006, 07:10 PM
i'm building a stone circle with out the use of modern tools, just ropes and pullies.

Wow! That'll be sure to catch the neighbors' attention! ;)

Theres
March 24th, 2006, 08:32 PM
Wow! That'll be sure to catch the neighbors' attention! ;)

it's funny, but the property next door took 4 years to sell! i've often wondered if we had anything to do with that. 8O

i'm getting 4 new 5 footers this summer, to get the circle a little more closed in (there are already four 5 foot quarter stones you can't see in that picture). then next year hopefully we can finish it off.

we originally did the gate as a sort of gift to the ancestors. it wasn't really meant as a 'reconstruction' of anything, but we did raise all the stones in a way that they might have (ie; no modern machines).
it took alot of people pulling on ropes, but everyone there knew exactly what we were trying to do so the stones really seemed to get a bit lighter from the focus. still, the three stones in that gate weigh a combined 17.5 tons, and NOTHING makes that easy!

Incendia
March 24th, 2006, 09:59 PM
Theres, I look forward to seeing your special on the Discovery Channel once they get wind of this project! :D ;)

Nantonos
March 25th, 2006, 11:04 AM
Some reconstructionists are also interested in learning/reconstructing the languages.


Yes, thats an aspect that interests me. Its another way to get a more complete picture, and to understand the nuances of what information remains that we recon from. So I have been studying Gaulish for a few years now.

Ishtara
March 25th, 2006, 05:47 PM
Very true.

I always thought that learning a language was one of the most powerful tools to understand a culture and its worldview.

Hieroglyphics are full of puns. Similar word roots often hint at relationships between concepts that are seen as totally distinct nowadays, but were closely related or belonged to the same "sphere" back in antiquity.
Therefore etymology is key in understanding what the Ancient Egyptians meant.

Another reason why a decent command of hieroglyphics is important is that, unfortunately, available translations vary widely in quality. Some translations are now obsolete, some others are just plain erroneous. I would much rather go back to the source and read my sacred texts for myself. This will not happen before a few more years of studies, but hopefully I will get there :)