Blog Archives

30 Day Pagan Journaling Challenge 9-30-2017

There is a 30 day Pagan journaling challenge for the month of September set up on Instagram and I thought it would be fun to do it – and would get me back into the swing of things as well.

And back into blogging here as I answer the posts. (I’m not much of an Instagram person.)

Today’s question is:

What simple but profound thing have I learned as I’ve walked this path?

Wow. What a question. So many things… I’m not even sure where to start.

Maybe because I’ve been on this path so long that I barely remember what it was like not to be on it.

Maybe because so many of the things that I learned felt less like learning and more like remembering, or like recognizing a truth I’d always known but had never seen put into words.

And maybe that is the most profound thing that I’ve learned: to trust my own knowing, to listen to my own voice, and to follow my own truth.

 

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30 Day Pagan Journaling Challenge 9-29-2017

There is a 30 day Pagan journaling challenge for the month of September set up on Instagram and I thought it would be fun to do it – and would get me back into the swing of things as well.

And back into blogging here as I answer the posts. (I’m not much of an Instagram person.)

Today’s question is:

What advice do I wish I’d been given when I first became Pagan?

Write it down!

Write down every stage of your journey. The books you bought, the books you read, the tools you use, the words you say (or think) in ritual.

Write down everything. No matter how mundane or unimportant it may seem, write it down.

Then when you’ve been on the path for a decade or two or three, go back and read what you wrote and remember the witch that you were then, all wide-eyed with excitement.

Remember what it was like when everything was new and you were caught in a web of wonder, of feeling “Yes! This is right! This is exactly right!”

Yeah. I wish someone had told me that someday I’d wish I had written it all down so I could look back and recapture those moments.

 

30 Day Pagan Journaling Challenge 9-28-2017

There is a 30 day Pagan journaling challenge for the month of September set up on Instagram and I thought it would be fun to do it – and would get me back into the swing of things as well.

And back into blogging here as I answer the posts. (I’m not much of an Instagram person.)

Today’s question is:

If I could ask my hero from my tradition three questions, what would they be? How do I think they would answer them?

I wasn’t sure I was going to be able to do this one. I don’t have a tradition, exactly. I’m a solitary. A highly eclectic solitary Pagan witch, primarily Hellenic, with a dash of Druidry, a bit of Buddhism, and a dab of Tao. And a smidgen of Qabala, too, probably. And, yes, I’m primarily Hellenic, and there are lots of Greek heroes, but I don’t feel particularly close to any of them.

So I was pretty stumped, until every Pagan page and group on Face Book suddenly blew up with the news that Raymond Buckland had passed through the veil today.

And that… changed the tone of this post.

I don’t consider Raymond Buckland to be a hero, exactly, but he (along with Scott Cunningham and a few others) was an important part of my early days on my path, so I’m dedicating this post to them.

As most know, my first book on Wicca was Scott Cunningham’s The Truth About Witchcraft Today.

I’m not sure what the second one was, but early on I came across Buckland’s Complete Book of Witchcraft (otherwise known as “The Big Blue Book,” and “Uncle Bucky’s Big Blue Book”) and it, too, became one of my early guides in learning about what witches are and what they do.

I still have my copy of it. It is one of the books (along with Cunningham’s books and a few others) that I just can’t bring myself to let go of.

I also have a DVD of Buckland – and one of Cunningham. I think I might watch them on Samhain.

 

 

 

 

30 Day Pagan Journaling Challenge 9-27-2017

There is a 30 day Pagan journaling challenge for the month of September set up on Instagram and I thought it would be fun to do it – and would get me back into the swing of things as well.

And back into blogging here as I answer the posts. (I’m not much of an Instagram person.)

Today’s question is:

My favorite item on my altar is… I got it…

That’s easy.  My athame.

Well, okay. One of my athames. (I seem to have a thing for knives.) My first one, the one I use the most (when I bother using tools at all these days), and most definitely not a traditional blade.

It’s a Depression Era glass cake knife, and I got it at a flea market (in Hazen PA) long before I’d ever even heard of Wicca (let alone the rest of Paganism). It was the last weekend of the season and the guy let me buy it for way less than he had it marked for. I’m pretty sure I ended up paying $7.00 for it. It survived about three moves, wrapped in light blue paper towels held on with a rubber band, before I started on this path and “knew” that that was why I had bought it all those years before and carried it along on so many moves.

It’s strange. I never held it like I would a normal knife when using it for a ritual. And when a friend used it (with my permission – we were doing a house blessing for his new apartment) he held it the same way I do, and afterward he commented that it seemed to want to be held that way.

(I also have a really old black-handled paring knife that I use in the kitchen, and I do a lot of kitchen-witchcraft, so I think it probably also counts as an athame.)

 

 

30 Day Pagan Journaling Challenge 9-24-2017

There is a 30 day Pagan journaling challenge for the month of September set up on Instagram and I thought it would be fun to do it – and would get me back into the swing of things as well.

And back into blogging here as I answer the posts. (I’m not much of an Instagram person.)

Today’s question is:

Do I regularly do shadow work? If so, do I record it? Why or why not?

Not really. I should, though.  I used to, but, like many things, that has kind of fallen by the wayside.

Now that my attention has been turned to it, however, I can see that I need to get back to it. I seem to have been losing my grip on my shadow self and I’m not liking what I’m seeing when I take a look at how that is affecting my outer self.

Do I record it?  Bwahahahahaha!  Er, sorry, but that… Um… yes.  No.  After all, this is the person who still doesn’t have a Book of Shadows after all these years. Apparently recording things isn’t something I do well.

I should start, but part of me wonders why.  I’m not in a coven and have no one to pass it on to. Still, there’s a part of me that wants to have a Book of Shadows. And a Grimoire, although I really don’t do written (planned) spells very often.

But that’s a topic for another time.

 

30 Day Pagan Journaling Challenge 9-23-2017

There is a 30 day Pagan journaling challenge for the month of September set up on Instagram and I thought it would be fun to do it – and would get me back into the swing of things as well.

And back into blogging here as I answer the posts. (I’m not much of an Instagram person.)

Today’s question is:

How do I see shadow work? Do I see it as a useful practice?

I’m going to answer the second question first.

Yes, definitely.

Shadow work is difficult and uncomfortable. It involves looking for (and looking at) the not so desirable aspects of yourself – the parts of yourself that society deems “bad” or “shameful” or “sinful.”

And once you find them, identify them, name them, shadow work means accepting them and integrating them into the rest of yourself instead of keeping them locked away in the shadows of your subconscious.

So why is it important to do that?

Because when you acknowledge them and bring them into the light and embrace them they begin to lose control over you.

The Devil card in Tarot traditionally shows two figures, chained, their chains held by a devil. The Devil is those parts of yourself that you refuse to acknowledge, but which are there, in the background, pulling your chains and making you dance to their tune.

Personally, I prefer a different drummer.

 

30 Day Pagan Journaling Challenge 9-22-2017

There is a 30 day Pagan journaling challenge for the month of September set up on Instagram and I thought it would be fun to do it – and would get me back into the swing of things as well.

And back into blogging here as I answer the posts. (I’m not much of an Instagram person.)

Today’s question is:

If money were no object, how would I set up my home to support my practice?

That’s easy.

First, I would move to someplace with more privacy: lots of land and no neighbors. Quite possibly I would simply buy land and have a house built.

The grounds would be set up with the quarters marked. A pond and waterfall in the West. Evergreens, holly, and boulders in the North. Wind chimes and flowers that attract bees and hummingbirds in the East. A fire pit (there are some really gorgeous ones out there!) in the South (and maybe a dragon statue).  I would also have an outdoor altar – most likely in a gazebo.

The house would be in the center.

As for the house itself…

I might have a room (or wing?) dedicated to magic, including a library, just so all my “stuff” would be in one place (likewise, I would have a craft room that not just held all my craft stuff but was a workspace as well).

And in the rest of the house, nothing would be hidden. There would be shrines to my deities in every room. (For instance, one to Hestia in the kitchen.)

Also, there would be a huge vegetable garden with a shrine to Demeter, and a flower garden with one to Persephone.

In short, every bit of the property and house would be designed with reverence for Nature and the Gods.

 

 

 

30 Day Pagan Journaling Challenge 9-19-2017

There is a 30 day Pagan journaling challenge for the month of September set up on Instagram and I thought it would be fun to do it – and would get me back into the swing of things as well.

And back into blogging here as I answer the posts. (I’m not much of an Instagram person.)

Today’s question is:

What Pagan book am I reading now? What’s it about?

Well, this one’s easy.  The truth is… I’m not.  Nothing has really caught my fancy lately.

Why is that?

I don’t know.  I think it’s because the readily available books seem so… superficial? I’m looking for something deeper than what I’m finding and I’m not sure that what I’m looking for is actually out there.

I also want something more… accurate. (For instance, “Mabon” is not an authentic name for the Autumn Equinox, despite what is written in countless books.)

I think the last Pagan book I read was Alaric Albertsson’s book To Walk A Pagan Path, so I might look into more of his books.

And somewhere in this disaster of a room I have a Diana Paxson book or two.

And some books on Greek deities and modern Hellenic practices. (One of which I’ve started multiple times and have barely managed not to hurl across the room due to poor editing. Maybe if I read it with a highlighter and a red pen in hand I’ll do better?)

 

 

 

 

 

30 Day Pagan Journaling Challenge 9-18-2017

There is a 30 day Pagan journaling challenge for the month of September set up on Instagram and I thought it would be fun to do it – and would get me back into the swing of things as well.

And back into blogging here as I answer the posts. (I’m not much of an Instagram person.)

Today’s question is:

Do I change my altar for the season? Why or why not?

That’s a loaded question!

I wish I could say yes, but I can’t.

I always want to, and think about it, but time has a way of doing weird sneaky things around me so I never actually get it done.

Plus…

I have a confession.

My altar is a mess.

Somehow it always ends up as a “magical dumping ground.”  Anything and everything with any sort of connection to my religious or magical practice ends up on it.

I almost never work at my altar anymore and it’s kind of a chicken and the egg sort of situation.

Do I not use it because it ends up being used as a magical dumping ground in between uses?

Or does it end up being used as a magical dumping ground because I don’t use it often?

Things to ponder…

30 Day Pagan Journaling Challenge 9-17-2017

There is a 30 day Pagan journaling challenge for the month of September set up on Instagram and I thought it would be fun to do it – and would get me back into the swing of things as well.

And back into blogging here as I answer the posts. (I’m not much of an Instagram person.)

Today’s question is:

What is my favorite Sabbat? Why?

Imbolc.

Yes, you read that right.  Imbolc.

Not Autumn Equinox (even though fall is my favorite season) or Samhain or even Yule or Beltaine: Imbolc.

Why?

Because I like beginnings, and Imbolc is all about beginnings.

In my personal tradition, it’s the start of spring. (If Yule/Winter Solstice is “Mid-Winter” then it can’t also be the first day of winter. That falls to Samhain (“Summer’s End”) which makes Imbolc the start of spring and Ostara “Mid-Spring” and Beltaine the first of summer and Litha “Mid-Summer. Then the fall harvest season starts with Lugnassadh, then the Autumn Equinox (which really shouldn’t be called Mabon but that’s another story for another time) and finally Samhain, the final harvest.)

So, anyhow, Imbolc is the start of spring. The days are noticeably brighter than they were at Yule (although it’s not exactly any warmer here in Western Pennsylvania).

Still, Imbolc is full of possibility. The days are longer, and there’s a sense that spring, although still hidden, is coming soon.

Imbolc is also a weather marker. Also known as Candlemas, there is a rhyme for it:

“If Candlemas day be sunny and bright
Winter will have another flight.
But if Candlemas day be cloud and rain
Winter has gone and will not come again.”

(Unfortunately I don’t remember the source. I think maybe I read it in a Witch’s Almanac but I’m not sure. Or maybe The Pagan Book of Days.)

There’s a song called “Rolling World” that expresses it perfectly for me:

“All life in the earth begins to unfold as the waxing light is seen.
Each seedling will sprout into its own self to inspire us to be truly free.”