Sunday, May 21, 2017

DFW Pagan Unity Fest - 2017

On the invitation of a friend, and on the strong encouragement of several others, I drove up to Arlington yesterday to attend the DFW Pagan Unity Fest held at the Arlington Unitarian Church.

This was a big deal for me personally because I don't do sunlight and I'm not very social. Thankfully it was cool and cloudy most of the day and I had a really good time.


I spent most of the time in conversation with the people who invited me, so I only managed to make it to the workshop on ancestor magic in the Craft. The stage was easily seen from the vending area so I was able to enjoy the musicians and dancers from my seat, and all were amazing performers. 


Backside view of the vending table of the Coven of the Four Fires


I waited to do any serious shopping until right before I was ready to leave. I didn't want to have to carry around a bunch of stuff, even though I did bring my manbag with me. I wanted to BUY ALL THE THINGS! and I came prepared to do so, but in the end I only did some minimal shopping. 


TAROTTTTTTTT!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I've been wanting both decks for my collection for years, and since they were both right there, I just had to. I also fell in love with the agate necklace and that had to come home with me as well. The vendor was Grove and Grotto  which is an amazing shop. Michelle makes a lot of their products in-house and I know that I will be doing a lot of business with them in the future. 

Highlights: The talk on ancestor magic in the Craft was fantastic. The food, provided by Maroches Bakery, was amazing and delicious! There was lots of LGBTQ visibility and support, lots of people of color, and a lot of cultural diversity. Good job, Texas!!! Dr. Susan Harper was vending and we had a fantastic conversation. My big contribution to the event was being "That Guy With The Bug Spray" and I definitely proved myself useful during the ATTACK OF THE FLYING ANTS! Also, everyone at the event was just so darn nice that I think I'll have to do things like this more often!

The Online Pagan Community can sometimes be so toxic and contentious that I think closing the door and tending to my own witchcraft is the best solution. Getting out of the house and interacting with people in person has really helped to remind me that there are really cool people out there in the Pagan community. 





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.


Monday, January 2, 2017

New Year, Still Me



I don’t make New Year’s resolutions. Trying to set long-term goals, knowing that I have 365 days to fail at completing them, is a recipe for suckage.

 Last year I picked a word for each element, something I felt I needed, and invoked that quality every time I was in circle. Ask the gods for Growth with no qualifier sometime, it’s fabulous, let me tell you! But in all honesty I needed that growth so badly that it’s going on this year’s list as well. 

Yes I found this little practice to be so helpful that I’m repeating it again this year. I’m also making a list of specific goals that I intend to work on throughout the next turning of the wheel. 

I’m not telling what those are!

17 Witchy Questions Tag - Kelden and Veles

We did a thing!