Wednesday, September 27, 2017

A Whole Blog Post Without Swearing!

Hello again! It's nearly October and I haven't posted anything here since early Summer. What else is new? I solemnly swear that my hands haven't been idle, they just haven't been anywhere near the keyboard.

What have I been up to since May?

I attended the DFW Pagan Unity Fest. I promised myself that I would get out more often in spite of the heat, bugs and sunlight.

Midsummer came and went without a lot of fanfare. I've always liked the four cross-quarter days a lot more.

Lammas was celebrated with gusto! Mostly that meant whipping up some biscuit dough and baking a mellman for the ritual proper. I made biscuits from the leftovers and those were served to the family with strawberry jam and strong coffee.

I jumped on the Bullet Journal bandwagon back in July. What I first dismissed as some sort of hipster thing has really helped me feel less overwhelmed. I've been keeping a mundane journal for the last year, and I started a journal for woo stuff. I confess that the woo journal is pretty sparse.

I took a day trip up to Fort Worth to visit my first and still favorite metaphysical shop. It's been nearly a decade since the last time I was there. I had a deep seated worry that I would find the place was closed and I would feel personally responsible for not making the drive up to buy books and incense on the regular. The business is doing fine, of course! The book section was limited - they had just had a sale - and the only thing of interest was Dion Fortune's Moon Magic. I guess I had forgotten that it was the sequel to The Sea Priestess, which I haven't read. I enjoyed it, but not enough to invest in the first book. Sorry, Violet! I did pick up some incense, a gift for a friend, the famed 1JJ Swiss tarot deck that I've wanted forever, and a new Cup for ritual. It's all done in watery colors and is made for the shop by a local artist. I also picked up Dryad Design's God and Goddess candle holders, which I've also always wanted, and they are very happy in their new home.

In direct contrast to all of that consumerism I made the decision to switch to using exclusively beeswax candles instead of paraffin. They are more expensive but I think the cost is worth it. They smell beautifully and last so much longer. As part of my tidying up for the Equinox I purged a lot of magical supplies that had either gone bad or were so old I couldn't even remember when I'd bought them. I confess there was a jar of hyssop - way in the back - that I had bought in 2009. Goddess preserve us!

In spite of what I said about only really liking the cross-quarter days, I did do a ritual for the Equinox. I happened to be off that day which certainly helped. I wanted to do something to formally welcome the Autumn-vibe as pretentious and goofy as that sounds.

In the mix of all of that I've had a successful year at my job, better relationships with my friends, a former-boyfriend-now-very important friend who shares my love of cheesy horror movies, and lots of witchy friends. (Hi!)

I've also somehow managed to keep my sanity as the world is daily dragged through a new, fresh serving of WTF?! (That doesn't count as swearing!)

Maybe there is something to this Witch thing, after all! 

Friday, March 17, 2017

A Spell? On a Witch Blog? Groundbreaking.

Most magical systems recommend practicing some sort of regular psychic or magical hygiene rituals. This might be as complex as taking carefully prepared baths, burning incenses, doing the  LBRP every time the sun does a thing, and fasting. This might also be as simple as a quick spritz of an herbal body spray or perfume.

I did an impromptu spell some months back when I was in the middle of a total stress induced downward spiral that has since become a part of my regular purification. The spell, not the downward spiral. Okay, that too. Who are you to judge me?

Ye Anciente Spelle Of Ye Arte Meltdowne 

1, Cast circle in your usual manner.

2. Take an unconsecrated candle - I almost always use a white votive, because I always have those around in abundance - and with your working knife carve things that represent all of your current stresses and problems into the wax. When I first did this spell, I was sobbing and nearly hysterical, so I just made gouges in the wax with my thumbnail while speaking the problems aloud. Well, scream-crying the problems aloud. It was a stressful month! Since we want to be rid of these things for good, we are incorporating our problems into the substance of the unconsecrated candle.

3. Once you have the candle good and fucked up (and you aren't scream-crying anymore) place the candle on your pentacle and inscribe a banishing pentagram of earth over it using your blade or your fingers. Then exorcise and purify the candle with the four elements. Ideally this will be a very tactile blessing, really rubbing salt and water into the carving and passing the candle through smoke and fire. I like a mix of sandalwood and white sage for this but you do you. Oil the candle, Van Van works great of course, but choose something you find cheerful.

4. Light the candle, sit with it a while, scream-cry some more if you want to.  Then, taking up your bell (I use Tibetan tingsha bells) you will speak the needed change and then strike the bell.

From chaos I create order
From rage I create serenity
From isolation I create connection

Or whatever. If you are really going through it who are you to judge me?  saying exactly what you need after having a cathartic experience is powerful enough in its own right.

5.Close circle and let the candle burn all the way down. 

6. Don't be a dick Act in accord. 

Bad humor aside, I've found this technique really helpful and I hope you give it a shot if you ever have need.

Sunday, March 5, 2017

I'm ready for my closeup, Mr. Mercury

In case you missed the live stream, here is the archived video of my interview with my friend Kelden. It really is true that the camera adds ten pounds, and fifty of those pounds went right to my face.

I was really nervous going in, which you might be able to gather from the small handful of long pauses while I gathered my thoughts or my overuse of the word particularly. I had a fantastic time and I look forward to doing something like this again in the future.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

I hope I'm as good as the show

On Saturday the 4th of March at 8 pm CST I will be doing a live interview with my friend Kelden on his YouTube channel.  We'll be talking about witchcraft, among other things, and there will be a chat room where viewers can submit questions.

Naturally, I'm nervous as hell.

I hope you will stop by!

Saturday, February 18, 2017

My Ancestry DNA Results

I was legally adopted at age two, which was mostly a good thing. The only curiosity I've ever had about my family of origin was my ethnic ancestry. My adoptive families are German and Czech, and my pale and gingered self is so obviously not.

Becoming Pagan really made me want to know where my ancestors came from originally. Maturing and growing in my practice has made me really think about those ancestors as people. I'm not one of those Pagans who has an ancestor altar, I'm not a medium and I have no solid opinions about an afterlife. But the use of phrases like beloved dead and calling on the spirits of my ancestors when I've been in dire need has made think about these things more deeply.

Surely everyone in my family tree wasn't a garbage person, even though my birth parents and currently living relatives are, seeing as how I'm so utterly fantastic and amazing. *snerk*

I'll spare you any more unnecessary woo because the point of all this is to stay that I finally had one of those Ancestry DNA tests done.

More than anything else, I'm Irish. I confess to you that I cried a little when I got the results. I feel more rooted somehow, with a sense of belonging and identity I've never known before, as if I make sense for the first time in 32 years. It's silly, but there it is. 

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Are you there, H? When Gods Leave

I believe that Gods and spirits are independent forces with free agency.

Well, I'm not sure if I *believe* it, but it makes the most sense given my relationship with various deities over the years. That free agency bit makes it hard for me to say who they are, what they are, or to try to put them in a neatly wrapped box.

Sometimes that free agency means you have to break up with them. Sometimes it means that they are going to break up with you. Sometimes you are going to remain friends forever, but you are both so busy with other things that you don't have time to eat pizza and get drunk every weekend like you used to.

Athena...Bast...Auset....The Morrigan...Dionysus...each one came into my life and I had such visceral experiences with them that I thought it was going to be a permanent and forever thing. They still have a place, though my devotion has been inactive for many years now. If they showed up tomorrow and wanted something from me, it would get done.

I haven't read every Pagan/Witch/Wiccan/Occult/Magic book or blog in the world, but I have read a lot. I have yet to read anything that addresses how to process the experience of a much loved deity moving on.

Do you maintain worship when no one is home? Do you keep a shrine for someone who isn't going to be visiting for a while or maybe ever again? Do you send out the Woo equivalent of a text that you know will be read but probably not responded to?

I don't have any answers.

I did have a dream about a year ago where a woman who looks very much like a Goddess I've been devoted to for over a decade handed me one of a particular thing she's frequently depicted carrying and told me "You know the way. I have an emergency to tend to."

Considering how 2016 played out, She wasn't kidding.

I think of Her daily. I chant her names on the New Moon and I light candles and incense now and then. I don't think She's left, not really. My prayer and worship are to the Lord and Lady of Wicca, first and primarily. Though I identify as a polytheist, I have struggled with worshiping Gods outside of Wicca in non-Wiccan ways. I'm really not cut out to be a reconstructionist in any kind of meaningful way.

"You think yourself into too many corners" She tells me.

If that ain't me.

A Whole Blog Post Without Swearing!

Hello again! It's nearly October and I haven't posted anything here since early Summer. What else is new? I solemnly swear that my h...