Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Notes from an old pagan

It saddens me that there are things going on in the pagan community that more divisive than binding: agism, my tradisms ( my trad is better than yours), gender discrimination of all ilks, OMGS you can't do that because it's harm clan,  and the list is longer than I can really wish to see. . . these things seem to be part of the human condition. Regardless of who we are as individuals and groupings there is always something to bitch about and there is always a finger pointing somewhere other than where it belongs: you.

Yes, you. We are all individually responsible for our research, our emotional reactions and deeds. . . or the lack there of. I work really hard to make sure that I keep myself balanced and checked and even with this work, it sometimes escapes me. Does that make me a bad person or even a bad pagan? No, it doesn't. What it does make me is human.

Growing up in a military family, I learned discipline and respect. I was taught that respecting your elders was important, even if they didn't deserve it in your perception because they were ( insert failing here.) The point that was raised was simply this: they deserved your respect because they have more experience living than you, even if you thought they were ( insert failing here.) So, I went through my childhood calling my elders Mrs., Mr., Ms. Miss ( insert surname) and saying yes and no Ma'am/ Sir. I still do that. It drives my Oath Mother crazy I think.

OK maybe in the realm of things being almost forty does not quite make me an old pagan. I know some pagans whom I consider to be my elders. Yes, I call them my elders. They would probably back hand me for doing so to their face, but they are indeed my elders in both living and crafting their practices. I have an immense amount of respect for most of my elders simply because their knowledge and technique makes me look like a doofus at times. They have been generous to me with both secret and time. There is not a thing I can possibly do to repay them except do for the younger generation as my elders have done for me. I can't possibly do this if my youngers are spitting at each other and their elders about yancy nancy bullshit: such as ego, dress code and other bleating nonsense.

When I take on students, other than my own children, it will be because not only has this individual expressed true desire and willingness to do the work, it's because they are respectful and understand that they do not know everything.  Hex, I don't know everything! I do however have the resources to find the answers to my questions from either research or my elders.

Quite frankly, youngers, a little bit of research into who your elders ( like it or not you have them) are may be very revealing about what the craft really is about. I'm talking about reading up on the people and not the subjects they wrote about ( although reading between the lines on that is helpful as well) Quoting an elder's work without understanding the individual behind it is simply insane. In fact, if you read up on your elders and their personal philosophies may make some of the newer generation gnash their teeth and rip out their hair until they come to the realization that they are only human. Depressing huh? The elders are really only human????? Yes they are, the thing that makes them seem more than human ( in some cases ) is simply that they have more years of experience under their belt and have seen this round of ruckus before. Possible several rounds of it and they remain unruffled by it ( a quality I am working on. I still get mad about certain things and feel I have to put in my .02. *face palm*)

As far as the OMG!!!!! The burning times!!!! Yes the burning times happened. Yes, most of the victims of the burning times were never actually witches, but we still need to be aware of that type of power grabbing. That's all the burning times was: inciting fear to grab power. That has to be stomped out at first bloom, regardless of where the finger pointing leads. So far I have seen the pagan community stand up and fight back when their rights as individuals are stomped upon. I am actually very proud of how I have seen some pagans handle this with grace and panache: elders and youngers.

Our community is filled with brilliance through both academia and gnosis. It is sort of hard to see that through all the spit sometimes. It sounds like we (as a community) are needing to individually do some internal work focusing on self respect and communal respect. I'll think on that for a bit and get back to you.

If you ever refer to me as an Elder or call me Lady to my face. . . I may become very upset and growly. Mrs. Oddly will do. x_O

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Opening doors

 I know that I have missed out on all the hub bub with Pantheacon ( again.) I have deliberately tucked and rolled then slid into my own private thinking space for work of my own. I have one suggestion for those like Z who wish to hold a birth woman only ritual. Hold three rituals: birth women only, transgender only, mixed. End of story. Everyone gets what they want. There would be no one feeling left out, they would all have something that is their own.

Time has skipped by me this last 9 months without so much as the courtesy of a squeak as it did so. Moving into a new place has literally uprooted my patterns and shook my little sandbox around burying some things, exposing others. It's not like moving from one apartment to another where things sort of resume where they left off. There are new chores to dole out and do, there are future repairs that must be planned before a thing completely becomes an emergency, improvements to dream about, and a community to get to know. It was nice to slow down this week without being sick.

In the strangeness of my own private portal to faery, I delved into my own self and dug up some answers I was expecting to hear and some that took me completely off guard. I knew there were things I needed to pick back up since my thumb was injured. Being healed now, I am ready to pick those things up again: yoga and mudras. It is easy now to see how much of an effect mudras and yoga has had upon me. Settling into my mudra reminded me how much I missed it. There were things that I was able to note, the flow of energy as the mudra took effect was interesting. It was like someone had poured peppermint oil on all of my nerves following the path through my body as it was being activated. Each moment the mudra was held was like the electricity in my body was being elevated, like a dimmer switch being turned.

My dreamscape has been very active. Most of the characters there were familiar faces and beings I have worked with for quite some time. There was a new surprise. I found myself in front of a mirror with the Ice Maiden. She was giving me mirror scrying tips. Upon waking, I made a mad dash for my journal to write them down before they receded back into my dreaming mind. This experience lead to questions about the nature of mummification and its effects upon the energetic body. I don't remember being contacted by the Ice Maiden quite like this before. She has shown up in places like a daemon would in my past, but never has she actually shown up in my dreamscape and spoken the way she has. Did the fact that she was so well preserved have something to do with her reawakening upon being unearthed? Is there something about being preserved that allows your soul to hold a space in time, possibly to skip through generations to pass secrets of the ancient practices necessary to that Shaman Thread I spoke of earlier? Were the ancients oblivious to this or was this something they understood? While things in my life seem to make more sense there are new questions, some of them I may not have answers to until it is my turn to pass through the forbidden mysteries.

While the ritual I conducted on my own behalf has shown to be effective, they ( my guides) have added aspects to it: part two and part three are coming around soon. I can now see why my friends and guides were giving me vexing half answers before. I am understanding the necessity of certain events that were unpleasant for me. Sometimes while you are content to stay where you are, you are needed to perform a different task. That will require you to shift and give up certain things that interfere with the new things coming your way. You have to wait for the door to open before you can enter the threshold. And some doors are best not forced open.

I am feeling calm and peaceful today. It is a sensation I have not had in quite sometime and I have missed it. I have a feeling that mirror magics and lessons are in cue for me. Curiouser and curiouser.

Friday, February 17, 2012

The Shaman Thread

Many years ago I had a conversation with my father while picking up pizza at his favorite place about, of course, space faring and colonization and how my particular skills seemed to him, at the time, non essential. My response was simply how did he know that this was not an essential step of evolution before we could leave the planet? Frontiers, as exciting and new as they are, are also very dangerous because it IS new. ESP's seem like a very handy thing to have well developed to help you get a heads up about those dangers while out there.

This conversation was resurrected in the face of my feeling not so well and deciding that taking it easy with Netflix was a good idea. I settled on an oldie but goodie: Earth 2. If you have never watched this show and you are a SciFi fan, this is something that may interest you. I will try not to spoil the show for you. The premise of the show is that enclosure has become intolerable on the stations; there is a great need and desire to go planet side and live there.

There are particulars I really found interesting. Especially, the connection that forms between a couple of the characters with the planet and it's indigenous inhabitants. It becomes very clear that there is at the very least one shaman with them. This character is an accidental shaman, but he is a shaman none the less. One who has much to learn about the art and craft of what shamanism is.

The questions that rolled around in my mind while watching this show were: how do we preserve the shaman skills while on stations traveling the black oceans of the universe? How will those skills be needed and utilized before we decide to dive back into one of the deep wells of space? Will those skills be sharp enough to reconnect with a large living body and its inhabitants? Will we be wise enough to remember that planets cannot be tamed?

I have ideas that may answer a few of those questions. The obvious one being how do we preserve the shaman skills??? We teach them to those who wish to learn and show a proclivity either openly or secretly just like we have done here in this deep well of space. Station life will require that there be a green house of sorts. The techniques will be different for growing food, but there still needs to be someone who can hear the plant life and tend to it in a good way. This would be a good practice field for a shaman stuck on a station. There will also be a great need for alternative medicines since manufacturing meds may not be the best way to handle things on a station and certainly we cannot rely on planet side delivery of said things. We must learn to be independent. The face of healing will have to change and shamanistic skills will certainly be handy there. There is even now and here a great proclivity for some to connect with technology in near mystical manners. I believe we have started to call them technomages. Considering the fact that we will be depending on a large piece of technology while we float through space toward our next well, a couple of good technomages hanging about would certainly make me breathe easier. I would certainly like our flyboys/girls to have an uncanny sense of what is coming at them while they jockey around between stations and where ever else they need to go outside. Open space tends to be a bit unpredictable. Loads of things zipping about at mach 5 and other surprises I am sure.

Will those skills be sharp enough to reconnect with a planet???? I hope so. Another question remains. Will those skills be allowed to continue or will we face another persecution and devouring of a belief system based upon fear and the need to control the mass population? Will we grow up as a species and begin to recognize that we are all different colored threads in a very large tapestry creating the larger picture of who we are meant to be? If we don't, I'm not sure we will make it and if by some stroke of genius luck that we do, with an even larger stroke of such luck, maybe an accidental shaman will surface. Personally, I would like to skip the whole freak out what the heck kind of crazy have I gone? phase, but that's just me. It would be, in my opinion, prudent to preserve and nurture the Shaman Thread that runs through humanity.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

A multi layered adjustment

It has been made very clear to me that things are not in balance with me in my life right now. I have spent the last few months with some sort of cootie or another and even as I type this, walking pneumonia seems to be the term docs are using for it. Oh yea! So, as the moon wanes I am working on digging into myself to help figure out and uncover the how's what's and why's of things and come up with something to restore that balance.

I think that all of this began with the move from the apartment to the house. I have been a non stop run, run, run and some of the things that I used to have time for have either gotten slashed in availability or has fallen off the radar completely. (BAD) I need to adjust things to a better balance and I think I need some other worldly help in tweeking it just right.

 I have dragged out my BOS and dug up some information that I gleaned from my tarot magic. I will be using Oleum of Isolde and my Thoth deck for this as I find that Hecate prefers it's sharpness and dark tones. I pulled out the Adjustment card, because that is precisely what I need to do. This card will become the center of my working.

Here are some things that I have found to work best as accents to using this card. I pass this on to you to use at your discretion as at one point in time or another we all find our selves a bit off kilter. I won't pass the specifics of my personal  ritual simply because it has significance to me because I wrote it. I suggest that you sit down with your self and discover your own idea of how your working should look. It will not only get the magic flowing, it will be most powerful for you.

Justice/ Adjustment: Balance
Incense: sage, copal, cedar
Oils: rosemary, clove, frankincense, rosewood, Oleum of Isolde
Stones: emerald, quartz, turquoise, black tourmaline, hematite
Candle colors: grey, white, sea green, blue

I include ritual in my personal healing for several reasons. I know healing to be something that is more than seeing a doc and taking medicine. True healing is something that happens between body and soul and it cannot be a complete process if you neglect to address all aspects of the illness including the aspects that is more often ignored: the energetic resonances of it. So it's time for this faery shaman to sit down with herself and work on herself even if it means that some things have got to be changed out and readjusted. I have sneaking hunches. It's time to verify them or find out what the real deal is.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Raising Caine!

I know the moment when it comes. I can feel the hackles on the back of my neck rise. My eyes narrow, the next words out of my mouth are preceded with a growling tone and they are spoken through bared teeth. This is the moment I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that I am about to rock the boat. Hard. If you are VERY lucky, I'll leave magic out of the picture.

There are not a lot of things that gets me all tizzied up, but these days, they seem to be pervasive and frequent occurrences. We live in this environment where we are expected to be politically correct to even the most outrageous things. It's like we are being programed to be compliant. Nothing is supposed to get heated, man that spaghetti is really gonna suck, friction is supposed to be immediately quelled and resolved in a polite manner even if the solution presented is absolutely ludicrous. We are supposed to smile and swallow that jagged little pill like it were the finest of caviar. I see this mostly exemplified from politicians, school officials, and my own teenager, who is probably responding to the environment he is steeped in at school.

So, when I see things like the following video, I let out a great HUZZAH!!!!

This is a perfectly acceptable method of raising Caine! He bought the computer, he bought the soft ware. They are his to gift or destroy as he sees fit. He probably had that eye narrowing, hackle raising, teeth baring moment before he made the decision to shoot the holy crow out of his daughter's laptop, but I think he channeled it well. I guarantee you his spaghetti is all nice and cooked! 

I think some people behave in preposterous manners because they think they can and should get away with it. I also think that the political correctness movement has done much to enable this type of behavior. They are not called up on the carpet. There are no repercussions for their actions or, even worse, rules are made to avoid reprisal for their bad behavior, look at our banking and stockmarket industries. There are things that should not be tolerated: the stoning of women for ridiculous offenses, the discrimination against and harassment of the third gender, the violation of the constitution, etc. . .  I could make a complete list, but it would be long and I would probably have a stroke just writing the darned thing.

How does this roll over into the pagan community? Well most recently there is Ginger Strivelli. I am sure, by now, most of us are familiar with the situation. She probably had that same eye narrowing experience right before she decided to rock the boat. I think that as individuals and a community if we expect to make a change, we have to be willing to raise Caine in a constructive manner and accept the fall out that it will most likely bring. This is why our parents used to say: pick your battles. I think if people responded more often to the heat that we are not supposed to feel we may actually have a better behaved society. It may cause someone to stop and think about the consequences of their words/ actions. Of course, I mean this in a constructive manner. It's okay to respond to that heat and call out the bologna for what it is. . . crap! After all, it takes a nice boiling pot of water to make any good pasta meal.

If you would like to join me in a discussion on rocking the boat, meet me in the chatroom: Not so Random Madnesses on Tues evening from 8:30-10:30pm Arizona time ( MST) on the Pagan Place network. Hope to see you there.

Monday, February 6, 2012

The enclosure lecture. . . not for the feint of heart, but read it anyway.

So here is the enclosure talk as derived from my Dad. I am sure that he would tell me I mangled it and left out some of the scarier points as necessary to the discussion. I am sure that I have not done the discussion justice. I hope that he forgives this savage daughter.

but first the dictionary definition:

enclosure |enˈklō zh ər| (also dated inclosure)nounan area that is sealed off with an artificial or natural barrier.• an artificial or natural barrier that seals off an area.the state of being enclosed, esp. in a religious community the nuns kept strict enclosure.• historical the process or policy of fencing in waste or common land so as to make it private property, as pursued in much of Britain in the 18th and early 19th centuries one of the chief effects of enclosure was to increase the number of landless workers.a document or object placed in an envelope together with a letter.ORIGIN late Middle English : from legal Anglo-Norman French and Old French, from enclos ‘closed in’ (see enclose ).

one of the chief effects of enclosure was to increase the number of landless workers.

I don't think that this was  an unplanned effect. It has been repeated throughout history as we know it since the written times of Moses. It probably goes back as far as there have been humans and clans. It's all about the acquiring and retention of power. Makes you angry, no?

And that's just the dictionary definition. 

Our Constitution lays out for all of us to understand and uphold basic divinely given human rights. No man has the right to take these things away without severe repercussions whether they be by the hands of nature/divinity or the uprising of a people. . . perhaps even all. The one right they overlooked, perhaps because it was one of those too obvious things, was the right to leave. Yes that's right. The right to leave, pick up your sticks and leave the area because you are fed up with the local rules and can not make a living, or you can not abide by them because you feel they are wrong, or because of oppression. What ever it is. . . you HAVE THE RIGHT TO LEAVE. Throughout history governments of all sorts have tried to quell this right. . . to this day there are still parts of the world where governments deny this right upon the threat of death. Literally. During the cold war ( or any other time in it's existence) in the Soviet Union, should you try to "jump the wall" you would be shot and killed. If you succeeded, they would hunt you down after killing your family and friends. If you left the country, the government made sure they had a hold on you via your family to prevent any defection or *misbehavior*. All of this in the name of retaining power. You can't have people escaping your perfect society now can you?

There are more sinister effects of enclosure due to the simple fact that there are only so many resources in this enclosure and there are more and more people competing for them. Food, water, shelter, space to exist in. . . all of these things are finite and when you are not permitted to leave the competition becomes furious, vicious even. Life becomes cheapened. Conformity and submission required. Those who will not submit and conform are either eliminated ( after a proper attempt to rehabilitate them) or they become rebels or criminals and depending on whether you are in power or not will define how these individuals are looked upon and branded.

And darkly we move forward: real criminal behavior born out of darkest nature of animal existence. Things are brought forward in a specific group of the species. They are dark shadows that hate all life and will do everything in their power to swallow it. They feed on desperation and fear and thrive just long enough to kill everything in their wake. . . even and especially if it takes them with it to end the suffering that life has brought them. There are no gifts to life with these creatures. . . only curses and misery. Why would they value it? The young destroy themselves because they see no hope, mothers turn on their children ( even destroy them), men declare themselves to be masters over other men, violence that makes no sense becomes a regular diet, apathy the new norm. The most frightening aspect of this cycle is reproductive failure. I am not just talking about the idea that infertility is happening. I am speaking about the flat out refusal to sire and raise offspring. The whole species collapses at this point. These things mark the dark last days of enclosure. The only solution to this is to act upon you divinely given right to LEAVE. Those in power will balk and do everything in their power to stop this. They are SO terribly afraid of this, that they will hunt you down, bring you back and set you up as an example. . . a terrifyingly horrific cautionary tale will be made of you. . . if they catch you. They will stop at nothing to accomplish this. Yet the truth still stands, the only solution to enclosure is escape. This escape brings positive results for both parties.

So as it stands, where in this day do we go??? The WHOLE planet is enclosed! We have the means to open a new frontier. We are a desperate species here in the now suffering from the evils of enclosure. We must leave. We are meant to leave. We are the seeds of Gaia. We are the ONLY species with the means, technology and understanding who can do this. In doing this, we will be preserving the planet and ALL her species. As, good stewards, we are obligated to save ourselves so we can save everything else that is here and now or doom it to extinction. In the long term, the planet will remain should we decide to continue on our enclosure situation. New things will give rise to dominance. A new experiment will begin. . . eventually. You may hear the argument that we are better than animals because of  X, Y, and Z reasons. I argue nay, we are only better at making excuses.

As pagans we tend to say: from Her we emerge, and unto Her we shall return. What if She is from the stars? That would put a whole new spin on that adage. They ( scientists) say that everything here on this planet contains stardust. So, indeed, we could reasonably say we are from the stars. 

For those of you who are shuddering with the reasonable fear that this subject invokes ( and most rightly so), there is this post from the Root and Rock that I absolutely adore and will remind you that you are indeed made of iron. 

Do not lose hope. Do not lose your spit. Do not be deterred from the truth. Do not stop trying to buy time for our young ones and ones who will come after them.

Be water and iron, my friends. May the wisdom and strength of the Gods guide us and empower us to do the things that must be done. May we remember the value of life and love it!