Rock & Roll Highschool

November 1, 2012 in Guests

***Dedicated to my Father***

Goddess, how I miss rock’n’roll.

Not the stuff that calls itself rock’n’roll on the radio today, but the stuff I grew up with.  The Doors, Lynard Skynard, Hendrix, Poison, KISS; The Rolling Stones, Ratt, Guns’n’Roses, Queensryche…the list could go on and on.  The simplest concept – Rebellion – is what launched a million and one ships to sail towards the sound that is rock’n’roll.  Its roots can be hailed as early as the end of the 19th century; slavery had ended though the hymns never quit being sang.  A silent yet steady hum, to the rebellious spark that would light the fires of rock’n’roll.

The early 20th century’s BLUES movements made even more of a cut into the psyche of the “rebellious.”  People like Howling Wolf, and BB King; Muddy Waters and my very own great-great grandfather – Mr. King of the Delta Blues Himself, Charley Patton paved the way for others to experience the deepest and darkest bits of their persona in public.  The bastard mulatto child spawned from the Blues became known as Rock’n’Roll.

So why in the love of Goddess, am I giving you my own personal re-telling of the history of R’N’R?

…because I am Pissed Off about the state of affairs in the world today.  And the only beacon of light I can find both comfort and wisdom in – is that of classic rock’n’roll.

So what the hell does rock’n’roll have to do with today’s state of affairs?

FIRE, Sirs and Ma’ams…FIRE.  The fire of creation; the fire of battles to balance that which is off kilter.

Where is the fire?  Take the impending Presidential election in the United States and the candidates we are presented with.  Where is their fire?  Why does it no longer burn in either candidate?

As a Pagan, the majority of my decisions are made on the Goddess-given INTUITION that my forebearers passed down to me.  And this INTUITION, which has Never Failed me tells me that the fire was never in the Republican candidate – and that mayhap, it’s been drained from the Democratic candidate.

Where is that FIRE of creation?  That fire that gets things done?

It’s nowhere; these campaigns mean NOTHING.

The four elements of natural magic are always ever the same; EARTH, AIR, FIRE, WATER.  Though my astrological tendencies have always pointed towards WATER, I can’t not respect the aspect of FIRE.  Via Scott Cunningham’s book “Earth, Air, Fire and Water:”  ‘Fire has always been a mixed blessing.  It helps as well as harms.’

Fire, the great cleanser of the gods!  Something that I cannot help but wish could be metaphysically incorporated in order to renew the stance of both the candidates – and the state of the union today.

I’ve been an active voter since well before I became a Pagan.  My father – the greatest man I’ve ever known – stressed constantly as I was growing up the importance of voting.  It was the “poor man’s” only way to conquer the will of the rich man, in my father’s humble opinion.  As a Pagan, I see it being much deeper than that.  It’s a matter of balance; righting that which is or has been wronged.  It’s an opportunity for the people to challenge the powers that be, to do just that – find a balance that works for everyone.

That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it.  Vote folks.  Put the fire back into politics, which in this country are supposed to be “for the people, by the people.”

Until we meet again, Brightest Blessings…

~PW

Mabon Thoughts: In Preparation for the Dark Goddess

October 4, 2012 in Guests

 “Knowing your own darkness is the best method for dealing with the darkness of other people.”  — C.G. Jung

 

The fall equinox is upon us; a time to rejoice in the loss of the light and the call of the dark.

As the second harvest has just recently passed, I’ve had a lot of time to think about the cause of being ‘even’ – in my writing and in my personal life.  How can I find the balance so desperately needed, in my rites & rituals to the gods/goddesses that make their home in the Pantheon of Porsha?

Via Llewellyn’s Sabbats Almanac, “the Fall Equinox, or Mabon, is one of only two times during the year when night and day are equally balanced.”  (pg. 284, Llewellyn’s Sabbats Almanac). 

It is Equality and Balance; two things that I can never seem to find enough of, in regards to my ambitions as a writer. Why is it so hard for me to budget my time efficiently?  I used to be a multi-tasking machine.  Now I find myself distracted by everything around me, so many thoughts flowing through my head at any given time that I all but close my eyes just to shut them out.

At a time that’s supposed to be about balance, and a sort of “end of the world” frenzy of creating – I’m having a hard time finding a way to sort out the important from the unimportant.  My personal disconnection has made it very hard to find connection, at a time that almost requires it as a means to an end.

So let me re-set, and move forward with my thoughts on what makes the three phases of the Harvest; Mabon being the middle portion of these phases.  I have always felt Mabon as it sets on like no other holiday or period in the wheel of the year.  It’s like a switch, clicking over.  If one has worked hard on the seeds they’ve sown, then Mabon is a time to reap the rewards of those seeds sown in the previous months.  Now while I could talk about crops, frankly I have no real knowledge of plants or farming practices.  To keep it real, the seeds I mean are the seeds of action, intent, and practice.

Post-Beltaine but Pre-Samhain, we are all fresh with the possibilities of renewed life via the renewed land around us.  The weather begins to cooperate (with the exception of this exceptionally HOT summer past!), being outside for long periods of time actually seems more like a possibility – and the desire to roam free of the usual day-to-day responsibilities becomes more evident.

As this time period winds down, you find yourself wondering what changes you have made, during what is arguably the most creative time of the year for most anyone.  What kind of spiritual changes have we made for ourselves in order to be Better at life?  What kind of metamorphosis still needs to happen, in order for us to complete the year at the tip-top of the pinnacle vs. somewhere in the middle?

My thoughts on this question that I posed to myself as Mabon 2012 started have been very dark.  No particular reason makes them so, but I’m feeling this time of year so deep in my bones that I’m not quite for sure how to get past it.  Ruminating is a favorite pastime of mine; one that I have to remind myself is only healthy if prompt action is taking on the topic at hand.  And so it is action that I vow, at this time of the second harvest.  No more thinking, plotting or planning – just getting my ducks in a row, in order to honor the energy at hand as the year draws to its end.

In parting, some thoughts via one of my older original poems on the topic of Metamorphosis:

 

Metamorphosis

 My hunger grows, daily…

My anger grows, slightly

To feed is my depth of character

To know is my quest for power

Like a dirty, scabbing caterpillar, as it sheds it’s cocoon-

Out of the darkness, onto the moon

I must feed,

I strive to know

My insanity grows

My need to feed calms somewhat

As my aspirations bleed into nothing

I must FEED

I must be

What am I?

I am metamorphasized.

FLY.

 

Until we meet again…Brightest Blessings to You and Yours!

~PW

The Orgiastic Madness of the Divine-Struck

September 20, 2012 in The First Dark

I can see why the mythically (or real) Maenads of olde would’ve LOVED a good rave in these times. It was through dance that they found themselves, found that higher state of being. It was through EXCESS that they became physically mad, psychotic, enraged with the need to service that which they considered ‘the divine’.

What could or couldn’t be divine? What’s right or what’s wrong, about the methods and choices other Pagans use in order to worship their patron Goddess or God? What is the necessity of following rules and guidelines, in order to perform magic ‘correctly?’

Magic isn’t about right or wrong, ceremony or decadence, what color you wore or how you interpret the words written in parchment.

A movie called Stigmata struck me with words that may or may not be true – but have always FELT true when it comes to my thoughts about the Divine Presence, whether male or female (it just happens to be female to me). This movie had a lost text of the bible that started with the following:

Jesus said the kingdom of God is in you and all about you not in a building of stone and wood Split a timber and I am there look under a stone and you will find me?

When I heard those words the first time, they struck me hard – actually made me cry. At the time, I was still a non-practicing Episcopalian. Now?  I’m very much making my moves; theological study and religious beliefs about Isis worship — it just simply makes sense, and feels right to me. It’s what was always there, for a very long time; I truly feel that I have simply reconnected with what was always there.

Egyptian/Kemetic-based Paganism & the Greco-Egyptian traditions have been in my heart since I was in elementary school. My borderline obsession with reading books about the old Dynasties of Egypt and the myths of old Rome & Greece, now comes full circle as I realize I was simply searching for something that reminded me of “me.” It simply, without fail, made sense to me. It wasn’t about dog-headed and bird-headed gods and goddesses, it was only about the one, she who had always been there. And there are a lot of people who feel offended by the fact that I don’t see ‘her’ as a HE, and vice-versa, that I don’t worship the others as patron Gods and Goddesses, also.

What I’ve learned is that the only person that you can satisfy when it comes to your personal theology, YOUR beliefs, is You. It’s what makes *your* heartbeat, what makes your pulse quicken, what floods your dreamscape. And what’s unfortunate as that the human race has not learned after all these millennia and years to respect each other’s beliefs and principles, as they are all simply based on one – doing to others as you would have done to yourself.

During my research on Greco-Egyptian Paganism and its history, I’ve begun looking into the story of Skopas, whose statue stands today as the simple of passion for one’s god/goddess, a symbol of Bacchic ‘frenzy’ or devotion, furor even, for their God. The Maenads’ mark on history most certainly may be gone but not forgotten. They are a part of Hellenic tradition & Greek mythos that still inspires me to this day – the part I most identify with. Excess has nearly killed me many a time; you’d think I’d learn. But that was the excess of the chemical, the material. The Excess of Passion – it’s an emotion and action I’ve never found myself quite able to let fully go of. My great passion for the things I do, and how I do them, more often offends others and gets me in trouble. But my great passion is what sets me apart – being fearless by being possessed by a nearly orgiastic ‘passion’ may be considered dangerous by some, but boundary-pushing by others. Me included. So as I start to study these things, I try to remember that it’s ok to express here the feelings inspired by being struck damn near dumb and stupified by the Divine. She called me home, I went. And regardless of where that takes me, I can tell you for a fact that the magic of she has led me nowhere that I can suffer harm throughout this new year of my worshipping her. My senses, and my instincts are so razor sharp now, that I doubt myself no more. I follow my heart without fear this time, and if that’s madness – so mote it be.

Dining with Divinity

August 24, 2012 in The First Dark

 “I am not afraid. I was born to do this.”—Joan of Arc

This week, I was going to continue my “Strong Women Figures” in Pagan History series with Hekate; I decided instead to take a break.  It’s always been my motto that if I cannot do it justice, then I won’t do it at all.  And this particular Goddess deserves my full attention, same as Isis and Lilith before her.  Dare I say that she’s challenging me, to bring it with all the flavorful zest she knows I’m capable of?

Either way…What I will do this for this week’s column, is to explain my process.  Mind you, I’m not so much the megalomaniac that I assume anyone actually cares about that *chuckles*

But…I will tell you why I’m not ready for her just yet – and why She is actually OK with that.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again…when writing, I have to wait until it comes to me.  I’m not one of those people that can make up a column or story from scratch on the spot.  When it hits me, I just know.  I know in a way that’s entirely physical, NOT mental.  It’s a warm feeling, spreading from my brain to the rest of my body like a strawberry, slow-dipped into warm chocolate.  It spreads and spreads and spreads until I am consumed by it.  Nothing and no one can fulfill the need that comes next; the overwhelming desire to put pen to paper on the idea that is suddenly consuming me whole.

For example, while writing this column I became overwhelmed with the idea of salty-tart things.  To be more specific; Tomatoes!  This gal LOVES a good tomato.  !!!

Obeying my hedonistic nature like always, I tiptoed my little self on over to the kitchen, and took out two of the most perfect little tomatoes I’ve seen in some time.  After washing them thoroughly, I sank my teeth into what quickly became THE firmest, most tart set of tomatoes I think I’ve ever had.  Again, I’ll profess my undying devotion to the fruit known as tomatoes.  I-LOVE-THEM.  I love them even better as the guiltiest of pleasures, dripping with ice-cold ranch dressing and sprinkled with shredded sharp cheddar cheese.  Though I was overwhelmed with the desire to eat some ranch-and-cheddar-smothered tomatoes, I wasn’t burning with the need to write or even think about them.  After I’d finished my impromptu meal, I cleaned up and put my condiments back into the refrigerator.  As I was about to close the door, my eyes spied “the trigger” to that feeling – that idea or ‘thing’ that becomes the call I must heed.  This call is the need to write, and write ASAP — or forever lose the message needing to be given.

Oddly enough, that burning ‘call’ to write was triggered by the sight of…apples.

A barrel of fresh, Pink Lady apples; even better than a Pink Lady?

An ice-cold and crispy Fuji apple. The combination of tart and sweet was is so insanely intoxicating to me, that each time I bite into an apple of any kind it’s like a mini-orgasm.

“Apples” was the word that came into my mind, when I first started writing this article.  The simplest word, item or thought I could ever think — and this would be the word and/or vision, that came to me when thinking about the Triple Goddess Hekate.  Really?

Absolutely.

I get it, Goddess.  Simplicity.  Pleasure.  Ecstacy, in the form of the simple.  Wonder, at how so much goodness, pleasure, health and happiness can come from an item so simple it can be found everywhere.

You see, while the stories and legends of Hekate are ANYTHING but simple – it’s simplicity that I feel  I’m being called toward.  Find her purpose, her reason and her uses but relay them with simplicity.  It’s not so complicated.  She is not so complicated.  Mayhap that’s something that all of us – from those that worship her exclusively to those that are simply curious, should remember.  It’s simplicity that’s appreciated, in our worship and rites towards the gods and goddesses who rule our hearts, hearths and homes.

That’s the message I received today.  It’s the message that I will proceed with, as I move forward with my research and summations on Hekate…for next time, of course.

Until we meet again…

Brightest Blessings, All!

~P

She of One Name.

August 9, 2012 in The First Dark

                     

 

“Lilith said, ‘I will not lie below,’ and he said, ‘I will not lie beneath you, but only on top. For you are fit only to be in the bottom position, while I am to be the superior one.’  Lilith responded, ‘We are equal to each other inasmuch as we were both created from the earth.’

But they would not listen to one another. When Lilith saw this, she pronounced the Ineffable Name and flew away into the air.” 

 

While every other Goddess carries many “facades” and many different names; there is one who never lost her identity NOR her home.  Of all the rest, her name continues to reside as the one true name, that represents knowledge and strength in regards to the gender known as female.

 

Lilith.

 

Some say she IS the Dark Mother.  She is the one, who gave birth to all things evil that roam this earth; Vampire, Demon, Lycanthropes or any other version of the Undead.  She is rumored to be one who feeds on those who are too weak to resist her touch.

…but then, there are others – other people, who regard Lilith as above all that commonplace crap.  I am one of those others.

I don’t intend to re-write myths or legends here.  I only intend to spread the fact of what’s been written and retold, and relay in turn what I’ve come to believe.  Don’t get me wrong, I don’t presume to say I know this particular Goddess anymore now than I did before.  She terrified me, to be perfectly honest with you.  But she terrifies me in that good way.

On a side note, let’s not forget a sprinkling of quotes from songs, movies and prose; some of my favourite writers and singers of my youth and adulthood. These people said it like it was in their minds, regardless of who it would offend. These ‘lines’ of praise are my very smallest bit of thanks to Her for aid received as I tentatively walked through her lore the past two weeks.

It’s my wish that I hopefully do not offend anyone out there; if I do offend I’m sorry but truthfully can’t concern myself beyond that statement.  That’s how this particular Goddess, this Monster of Knowledge and the Pursuit of Truth, makes me feel!

As usual, I digress – Let’s go back to the beginning and never ending theories regarding Mother Lilith.

She’s most commonly known as the betrayer of Adam, the first man; the first and most scorned of Heaven, per the Christians and some ‘paths’ of Ancient and Orthodox Judaism.  She’s also been called the “Bringer of Pestilence and Disease;” killer of newborn babies and children.  She’s been known as a maker of the infamous ‘nocturnal emission’ that all men (and some women!) claim to suffer from – THE Succubus, mate to the Incubus.  Or was that her daughters, the ‘lilim’ that some Jews still wear amulets to protect against today?  And of course, let’s not forget that her aforementioned title, as a creator of all Fallen or Fabled demonic creatures that walk the earth today.

Then, there are some softer versions of her myth.  Lilith, twin to Adam and joined together with him at the back!? Another fabled myth sees her as the Great Mother figure, who was worshipped by the settled agricultural tribes, who resisted the invasions of the nomadic herdsmen represented by Adam.  It is felt the early Hebrews disliked the Great Mother who drank the blood of Abel the herdsman, after being slain by the elder god of Agriculture and Smithcraft Cain.  (Genesis, 4:11).  Lilith’s Red Sea is but another version of Kali Ma’s Ocean of Blood, “which gave birth to all things – but needed periodical sacrificial replenishment.”

I could continue on quoting myths, legends, and folklore galore, but I will not.  There’s no point in saying what’s already been said.  So let’s get right to what I feel…and what Lilith makes me FEEL, starting with a passage from the epic song by The Doors – “The End”:

 

“Ride the snake…ride the snake…to the Lake…the Ancient Lake, baby.  The snake is long; 7 miles…ride the snake…he’s Old!  And his skin is cold!” –Jim Morrison, The Doors.

 

At first, when reading all of these myths and remembrances; seeing these ancient scriptures and statues I felt nothing but cold representation of something that could’ve never been real.  Granite, bronze and marble faces that stared back at me – representations of what the artist felt but not necessarily what those who may have once worshipped her saw.  She wasn’t really real to me.  After all, every other Goddess had some sort of purpose, or reason for existence.  The only reason ever truly accredited to Lilith was to plague and make misery on mankind.  But reading the Christian and Judaic orthodoxies on Lilith, I’ve come to see the truth hidden between the layers and lines of time.

 

 

“I love my baby ‘an I

Tell the world I do!’

‘What made me love her,

you will come ‘an love her, too!”

(“When Your Way Gets Dark” – by Charley Patton)

 

Lilith was, and is the Snake.  The Snake; unchanged after thousands of years because it never had to evolve.  She came into this world knowing; it didn’t take a bite of an apple like it did for poor, dumbed-down Eve to open her eyes.

Lilith’s only crime, if you really consider it that, was that she refused to subjugate to her mate.  I’m not saying she was smarter than Adam – quite the opposite, I believe they were evenly matched in most ways.  And that became the problem.  Lilith refused to “lie beneath” her ancient husband, not just physically but mentally as well.  If someone can’t see that logic between the lines of every religious genres tomes’ that have written about her, then they are blind as a bat.

“C’mon man, let’s plan a murder, let’s start a religion!  More More More!” – Jim Morrison; Lead Singer of The Doors. 

 

I’ve always been a firm believer that religious texts are heavily built on Metaphor.  Metaphor brings the signs, subjects, and dramas that telling the truth cannot.  Lakes of fire, blood-filled oceans, talking snakes, hooved-or-heeled Gods…the truth still stands, that within all of this metaphor a true believer can see the honest truth.  It’s the nonbeliever, that person which fears that there really isn’t anything at the inevitable end that becomes the hardcore atheist or the book-burning zealot – no matter the religion, practice or path.

That said, there is much more to Lilith than being some sort of ancient-day feminist.  I am completely against the idea that she disliked men to the point that she spent the rest of her existence torturing them in dreams, or tormenting and killing their children for pleasure.  I’m completely against the idea that she spawned demons, just to pollute the world.   It’s just the opposite; I believe that she simply wanted a mate who could share – share knowledge, share in the chores of life and share in the act of physical love. She didn’t want to just be a conduit for reproduction and sexual pleasure; the knowledge that she came into the world with and the strength of character she owned where what led her to stand next to her convictions fearlessly. Regardless of the punishment meted by karma or the hand of any creator god or good ‘ol fashioned Darwinism, she took a chance.  So what did she win, if anything?

She won her freedom, to be whatever she wanted.  Whether she took the dive to the darkest of places, or simply ran off into existence never to be seen again – the moral of the story here, in my humble opinion, is free will. 

It’s something a lot of us, Pagan or otherwise have seemed to forgotten that we have.  We hide bits and pieces of ourselves in order to just get along – with our environments and those in them.  What I admire most about the story of Lilith (once dusted off and set upright, of course!) is that she made her own choices, right or wrong.  And that’s a lesson that most of us in this life need to relearn – males and females alike!

As always, Brightest Blessings and Thanks for Reading!  ;)

I plan on riding this wave out until it expires like a burnt down candle wick, folks.  Next on my list?  The Triple Goddess – from Maiden to Crone, what does she represent for Pagan men and women, regardless of her flavor?  Until we meet again…

 

~P

Sources:  (http://www.bibliotecapleyades.net/sumer_anunnaki/esp_sumer_annunaki15e.htm), (http://www.pantheon.org/articles/l/lilith.html)

 

“King of the Delta Blues:  The Life and Music of Charlie Patton” by Stephen Calt and Gayle Wardlow.  (pg. 83)

Only The Strong Survive

July 27, 2012 in Pagan Spirituality, The First Dark

“On an Ancient Stela it is written:  ‘I am Isis the Goddess, The Possessor of Magic (HEKA), Who Performs Magic; Effective of Speech, Excellent of Words.’”          (from the book “The Isis Oracle” by David Taylor –Brown, pg. 153)

 

This week in the mail, I finally received a book I’d been waiting on for some time; “The Isis Oracle” by David Taylor-Brown.  This book also came with these AMAZING Cards; pictures and definitions of the gods & goddesses of Kemetic Paganism.  Some of the cards also had beautiful hieroglyphics representing common terms and phrases that one would find themselves using often, when performing ritual and rites at their altar as worshipper of the ways of old Kemet.  The cards, in all actuality, or frankly more beautiful and interesting than the book itself!

So…what in the heck does this have to do with anything, eh?

What made me so happy about receiving these items this particular week, was that it was almost like getting an acknowledgement from the Great Mother herself, for writing about the subject of my column this week.  Truth is, I’ve been researching, writing and pondering on this topic since the day I uploaded my last column.

So what exactly have I been ruminating on for days on end, after recovering from a “total crisis of the self” last week?

STRENGTH.

 

Not just the general meaning of the term, but Women.  Strong Women.  More specifically, Strong Goddess Figures and Strong Women throughout this world’s storied past. I’ve found myself watching movies and other historical retellings via documentary, etc. – about Iconic Women in history.  I should really say that I’ve not just gravitated towards this subject for the past two weeks; more like been possessed by the urge to immerse myself in their legends, in order to bring myself back to purpose vs. succumbing to inner struggle and daily strife.

Being sucked in as I have by the topic of iconic women figures throughout history; I’ve decided to dedicate my next few columns to some of the Goddesses that I have studied the most in the past two years.  Of course, we’ll start this column with my Patron diety, my Isis.

When thinking about the ‘Great Mother’ icon, there is quite obviously a Great Mother figurehead for just about any religious path one may take – from my Blessed Mother, my Isis to the Greeks’ Eurynome – grandmother to Zeus…Cybele, one of the oldest known creation goddesses whose blessing made the crops grow; Brigit, Ireland’s infamous “Triple Goddess” to good Lilith, Mesopotamia’s Great Goddess of Wisdom, Independence and Strong-Will and Christianity’s Blessed Virgin Mary.

Regardless of their known tendencies or powers, one trait ALL Goddesses share across the board was STRENGTH.  In any and every story I have ever read, regarding my patron Goddess or otherwise – it was Strength of Will that always ever seemed to see them through their burden to the side of success.  For example, the story of Isis’ birth to Horus never fails to inspire me.  Poor Horus was deviled not only his entire existence, but even prior to that in the womb – by his jealous uncle, the god Seth.  As the story goes, Isis feared Seth would try to kill her son once born; she secretly gave birth to Horus in the marshes of the Nile delta.  Hidden from view and attended by Hathor and the Scorpion Goddess, Isis gave birth to her son.   As quoted in ‘The Isis Oracle’ by David Taylor-Brown (pg. 20):

“Childbirth was, and remains, a dangerous time for both mother and infant, and the wearing of an image of Isis, offers comfort at this time.  At every turn the young Horus was threatened by dangerous forces and beasts, but on each occasion Isis either cured him herself, or enlisted the help of other gods such as Thoth to ensure that her son survived.” 

Though translations may have been lost, and messages have been covered up by the glamour of mystery, magic, and misinterpretation – what stands truest to me will always be the “moral” of the story.  And to me, the moral of this or any story is being self-sufficient – believing in oneself and going against the odds to finish what you’ve started.

What I mean by this is that as a Pagan, it can be easy to get side-swept by “Fluffy Bunny Syndrome;” ie. Looking for or insisting that your every waking moment is a miracle of some sort.  Seeing a ‘sign’ of some sort, in every experience you have.  Professing that everything around you is now “glitter and gold” because you are a Pagan of ‘XYZ’ path.  What glitters and is gold isn’t what’s important.  What’s important is remembering the ‘moral’ of the story; the gods can only help us with so much; it’s up to us to use what they give us to find a resolution and set ourselves back to purpose.

I end these thoughts for the week by laying myself bare and vulnerable to the world; a retelling in words of my experiences when Goddess is interacting directly with me:

It is always ever in dreams that she comes to visit me, or relay her advice or messages.  In my dreams, she’s always in the guise of a modern-day “girls’ day out.”  It’s usually brunch, or a busy café or coffee shop in the modern world.  We are together, eating and drinking – everything warp speed around us; blurred and of no consequence.  Her voice is soft, always amused with me for some reason but only in the sense that I know She Knows I’m hearing her – but of course, will I absorb, understand and use the powerful knowledge she relays?  Her clothes could be from anytime, anywhere – both modern and timeless.  Her hand always touching mine; holding my ever-moving body, soul, mind firmly in her grasp.

She LOVES me; this feeling pours from every inch of her countenance into me.  She loves me, with all that she is and I love her; so much so that I’m constantly enthralled to her.  I could never make my mouth form words sufficient enough to tell her that, and it destroys small pieces of me inside knowing that fact.  She remains amused, stroking my fingers lovingly and letting me know that none of that matters right now; everything I know and everything I feel she has always been and will always be aware of because she made me.  I am a part of her core, like all things are.  When her messages are relayed, she whispers final words to me; words that it takes me DAYS Later to recall and understand!  And then….just like that, she is GONE, and I am awake – Wide Awake and Full of that FIRE that she always leaves me with; the fire of Purpose Realized.

 

In her honor and in parting, one of my favourite passages – via one of my favourite books, “Pandora: New Tales of the Vampires” by Anne Rice (pg. 153).  Here we see Pandora’s words prior to becoming a vampire, when she was human and worshipped as a member of the Cult of Isis:

“You are she who has separated the Heavens and the Earth.

You are she who rises in the Dog Star.

You are she who makes strong the right.

You are she who makes the children to love their parents.

You are she who decreed mercy for all who ask for it.”

 

Coming up next time…

Lilith; Dark Goddess — or, Redeemer and Patron of Scorned Women?

Until we meet again…Brightest Blessings!

~PW

Does That Make Me Bad?

July 14, 2012 in The First Dark

“What can I say? I AM the Glorious Sun!” – Gaia; Spartacus-Gods of the Arena, Episode #1

I’ve spent most of this week, lamenting the fact that I can never write until Muse herself visits me! She sits on my shoulder, small as can be – whispers into my ear, and then? So Mote It Be! (That’s a little bit of poetry for these early morning hours; as I sit here and do as she demands). But I don’t look a gift horse in the mouth, especially when I find my own mind so preoccupied with the ‘daily droll’ that I cannot put it to the projects at hand.

But I digress…as I love to say to myself often, while writing…”What in the Sam.HELL are you talking about now, Porsha Williams?”

Everything and nothing, as usual.

So what did Muse say to me this morning, in her casual little conspiratorial whisper?

“You are good enough.”

I spend a lot of time, reading other Pagan blogs and sharing what I consider phenomenal. I do this in order to understand more about the path I have chosen, as well as learn from others who have long since been initiated into their craft. The downside of this is that I also spend a good amount of time wishing that I was just as good as they were, in my writing as well as choice of topics.

It’s funny; as a self-proclaimed Megalomaniac and borderline Narcissist, who only just recently learned to love and embrace her talents as well as her face…I am still easily wounded by the thought that what I put my heart and soul into – My Writing – is not worthy enough to be considered by any other eye than my own. Sad as well as ironic, eh?

Muse whispered again to me, while thinking on the aforementioned: “You ARE good enough. Everyone is. Now Write about it!”

And in saying these things to me, I finally found myself blessed with a topic that I could embrace; one that isn’t necessarily a ‘textbook’ Pagan topic nor current event – but one that has always meant something to me. After all, isn’t that what writing is about, when it’s all said and done? It’s not about a proper style, or arrangement, or choice of words or spelling or even the bloody topic. It’s about relaying in words, a part of your soul – be it past, present, or future in its center.

And there IS no right or wrong to that. !!!
What I’ve thought about more than anything this week, is what makes myself and others consider ourselves worthy enough in our own eyes; the world’s eyes and the eyes of the gods themselves.

Why are we so hard on ourselves? Why do we strive so hard to find definitions to account for the way we behave, what we do and why we do it? Why do people feel the need to join pack mentality, in order to feel validated in themselves and what they do? And why do those that stand alone – and always have, in the scheme of things – receive the harsh judgment of ‘stand-offish, weird, argumentative or cut-off’ from all things. The reality of it is that it’s never anything like that; moreso, it’s the knowledge that we’re connected to something much deeper than that – yet, afraid to relay that feeling or knowledge to anyone else for fear of mockery.

…I don’t fear mockery. I don’t fear the reprimands of a society that feels that my way is a way that was long-since seen as wrong. While it’s often times hard, to make others understand my point-of-view, I never go out of my way to make them think I’m right. In truth, I could care less whether they see me as right or not. My main concern is using what was given to me, by the blood and through the knowledge I have so far acquired as a Pagan to make others know that they are not alone in what they pursue.

But besides that? I hope to find a reckoning for myself. My guilty pleasure, and my greatest remorse is that when I DID find love for myself, I also found Ego and Vanity. These are two things that I abhor in others, yet privately indulge in myself. They are subjects that I often sit and wonder how the gods themselves feel about; I personally feel that if they didn’t have ego and vanity to contend with themselves, then they would not be OUR gods!

Food for thought – and though a little late, my thoughts at random…lighter topics than the norm this week, presented with an equally light touch from me to you.

Until we meet again…

Brightest Blessings,

~PW

Black, White and Brown Are the Loneliest Colors in the Crayon Box

June 28, 2012 in The First Dark

DISCLAIMER:  Again, these are my personal opinions toward the subject of fighting racism in the Pagan community, as an African-American Pagan.  In no way, shape or form do I wish to promote ‘sectioning’ out based on race/gender/sex, etc.  I also am not writing this to ‘down’ covens or groups, nor promote being a solitary or eclectic witch. Lastly, I’m not writing this to ‘down’ Christianity.  I simply wish to point out some current affairs in the Pagan community, and my experiences and thoughts on a solution.  That is all!

 

“Everybody is a book of blood; wherever we’re opened, we’re red.” –Clive Barker, ‘Books of Blood 1-3’

I’ve found it easy, up until here lately, to stay out of mainstream Pagan politics.  Before I go into the true subject of my column this week, let me back up and give a little background before trotting all over the foreground.

Two years ago this October 2012, I cracked open the ‘broom closet’ and converted into Paganism.  To be specific, my flavor as a Polytheist tastes like Greco-Egyptian Polytheism, and the Kemetic Reconstructionist movement.  What in the Sam Hell does all that mean?  Without writing an encyclopedia, I was claimed by Aset right off the bat; owned by Dionysos, like it or not.  Sekhmet has been with me since I was a little girl, long before I recognized what my never-ending dreams of lions truly meant.

By modern Pagan terminology, I am a Solitary ‘Eclectic,’ I spend the majority of my time alone or in private with my gods.  I do this so that I can think what I want; worship as I like and say what I feel.  I don’t have to feel judged by anyone, in regards to the way I honour the gods.  I don’t have someone pushing this book or that object at me, telling me I should do it this way or that.  I can avoid what I experienced in my former life as a Christian.  I can experience true joy, I can be ECSTATIC and unashamed while solidifying my commitment as a Pagan.

Now back to the task at hand…as I’d said in the beginning, up until now I’ve successfully avoided writing about, or involving myself in current topics in Pagan ‘politics.’  Topics like the issues of whether we should have places of worship, or how to fund businesses in the Pagan community; racism and exclusion due to race/gender/creed (ie. Transvestites joining in “women-only” rituals, Norse or Celtic-based faiths excluding non-whites, etc.) within the different faiths and sub-genres.  And let’s not forget the usual “soap-box” bickering and nonsense, over what god/goddess likes what color flower – the list could go on and on!

Someone may read this and feel that I’ve still got a bitter taste in my mouth, in regards to the former missteps I’ve experienced at the hands of others regarding religion and religious practices.  However, I can promise you that that is not the case.  I’ve just become a master at avoiding zealots, know-it-alls and mentor-wannabes of all shapes and sizes.  What I know and have experienced with the gods is very personal to me.  And while I enjoy sharing it via this column or my personal blog, I do not feel that I need a special building, group, outfit or ‘campground sabbatical’ to validate what I’ve experienced.  I don’t feel that ‘real-world’ issues need to touch my religion; I don’t want my faith sullied by that which I feel is irrelevant compared to my goal – being touched by my gods, and becoming closer to them with each new thing I learn from and of them. Every single day since my conversion and commitment to spiritual growth as a Pagan, my relationships with my patrons and deities has grown.  Why would I ever slow these happenings down, by stopping to involve myself in what I’ve always considered drama in the scheme of things?

…I have been Very Naïve.

The time of the saints and mystics — in my humble opinion — has long since been over.  What I mean by that is that we can no longer afford to completely divorce ourselves from the material, just to be connected to the gods.

The gods are everywhere, in everything.  I do believe that some of our most important lessons to be learned via the gods, are through our interactions in the world and with others.  By believing that, I know that the gift of words and writing that I have been given by the gods can be used to spread their words; their lessons.  It can be used to spread knowledge and understanding.  And it is why I give apologies to the gods, for being so arrogant as to assume that I can carry on as I please without using what they’ve given me towards helping our community provide guidance for those that have lost view of their lessons.  If writing is my gift, why am I not paying it forward by spreading what I’ve experienced in order to educate and help those who are missing the point of what it is to be a pagan on the right path?  I’m not saying I have all the answers, or that I even know anything of worth.  But I am saying that experience sometimes is the best teacher, and you never know who may be in need of yours!  With that said, I wanted to address a current ‘hot topic’ in the world of Pagan issues today:

Racism.

So, I’m not going to reiterate what the majority of us already know; when most people think of Pagans they immediately think of the movie ‘The Craft’ and of Wicca.  Obviously, like Christianity, Paganisms has its major genres and then its sub-genres.  In my humble opinion, the majors are Wiccans and Pagans/Heathens.  While each group has different dieties it may worship, what I’ve always felt of Paganism over Christianity is that acceptance and respect were always offered prior to derision or scorn.  Your choice in paths may be different (ie. Druid vs. Greco-Egyptian) but it didn’t matter because you were accepted AND respected for being different.  Open Arms, all around, right?  WRONG.

Though the following isn’t the first time I’ve noted racism in the various online Pagan communities, I will say it was the most blatant of showings I’d ever seen.  In an article called Wicca, Paganism and Racial Identity — per the lovely Patti Wigington’s blog ‘About PaganWiccan’ (http://paganwiccan.about.com/b/2012/06/15/changingofwicca.htm) last week:

My friend Kazoo is a self-described “combo plate” of a variety of backgrounds. She’s got a mom who’s half Irish and half Puerto Rican. Her dad is from Somalia, but his mother is descended from Dutch settlers. Kazoo herself is Wiccan, and is married to a Jewish guy of Polish extraction. She’s raising her kids as Pagans, and she says, “We show up at a Pagan potluck, and you can always tell who the new people are. They stare at us, and you can tell they’re thinking “Who are all those brown people, and why are they here?” And then they realize I’m the High Priestess, and it’s a bit of a jolt. You can see it when the lightbulb clicks on.”

 

How sad is that?  Within her own religious community, AND as a High Priestess – she gets raised eyebrows, regarding her skin color?  In this day and age?

Most of the commentary following this article was positive, sans one reader named Silvia.  I won’t give her comment another view to the light of day – I’ll only acknowledge it by stating that Silvia felt the need to leave Wicca because of the advocacy for integration by minorities.  Patti’s response article addressed it so well (found here:  http://paganwiccan.about.com/b/2012/06/19/reader-says-leave-wicca-to-the-white-folks.htm) that I don’t think anyone else could’ve said it better.  But I use this more recent example as a background to why I felt the need to step out of my self-proclaimed shadow of silence.

As an African-American woman living in the Midwest, I have not experienced a lot of open racism.  This is mainly due to the fact that I live directly in the MIDDLE of the state of Missouri, which oddly enough is much more progressive than most of the Northern and Southern states that surround it.  Mind you, there are still some small towns and counties that I am aware need to be avoided after dark, as the ‘lynch-mob’ mindset is still alive and well there.  What racism I have experienced, is usually not the outward aggression that many have.  It’s actually more subtle occurrences; more displayed prejudices vs. racist acts — usually regarding my level of education and that “I speak so well!”  I take all of that with a grain of salt; my color has NEVER defined who I am.  Identifying with others simply because of color has always been a loser mentality to me; if you can’t be who you are on your own then you are weak.

Awhile after converting to Paganism, I realized that I was even more of a minority in the Pagan community than I am in life.  Regardless, I didn’t see it as an important thing to represent myself nor ‘affiliate’ as an African-American Pagan in any way, shape or form.

Somehow, this has changed in the past few days after reading the feedback to the aforementioned articles.  For some reason, this latest example of ‘racist pagan’ rhetoric hit a button that opened the floodgates to ‘soul-search land’ on my end.  Though I abhor the idea of groups, I’ve come to realize that I myself am being prejudiced by thinking that groups almost always equal group mentality.

By representing myself as an African-American Pagan, I’m not just saying I want to be considered over whites and other minorities simply for being black.  It doesn’t mean I’m going to join an organization and do/agree with everything they say simply because we are all minorities.  It doesn’t mean that I consider myself BETTER than other Pagans, because I am black and I worship a genre of Paganism that is a very small group compared to all the Wiccans, Druids and Celts out there.   It doesn’t mean that I’m going to *not* learn about other dieties because they were worshipped primarily by those of Anglo-Saxon or Caucasian persuasions.

So, what am I saying it means?

It means that I’m letting people — Pagan or otherwise — know that I support knowledge, education, and companionship for ANY minority looking into becoming a Pagan.  Regardless of whether they choose to be a Druid, a Kemetic or a Wiccan – I support their steps toward the pathways of Paganism.  I support helping them connect with reputable, knowledgeable individuals who can further their education and initiation into the path of their choosing.  I support freedom of choice for religion, no matter what it may be – but more importantly, EDUCATION for anyone who chooses the Pagan lifestyle.  I feel that advocating an organization like the AA Wiccan Society, or reading and promoting the writings from blogs like Black Witch or Daughters of Eve helps to open the doors for those minorities who may have felt like I did, but who are afraid to pursue what they feel because they don’t have the resources locally or otherwise.  I feel that by advocating and promoting those blogs/organizations, I make it a little easier for those non-minorities who are Pagans to feel more comfortable asking and getting information from the minority point of view.

By advocating and representing as an African-American Pagan, I feel that it’s not just about this group that I’m in but it’s also about opening the doors for those who are afraid to enter –simply because of how those around them may react or what they may say.  They would have an informed, reputable support system behind them so that they don’t have to be afraid.  Through kinship and communication, we open the doors for ANYONE to learn about who and what we are as Wiccans, Pagans and Heathens.

To me, this is the most important fight against racism within our community — online and in life.  This is how we beat it.  By communicating with each other, and spreading that communication through kinship with those around us; inside and outside the Pagan community.

Once done, we can then begin to educate about who and what we are; our dieties and their place in our lives, this earth and our respect for it.  We can explain why we are so proactive in the Pagan community to do our part to protect this Earth; our connection through the teachings on our chosen path that urge us to respect the Earth until the end of our days — so that our progeny can continue the tradition during theirs.

It’s my firm belief that ignorance is what feeds the flames of the fire – those flames that Hatred, Racism, Bigotry, and Prejudice ride upon to spread themselves into the world.  If my simple words in this humble column of mine do nothing else, I hope it is that they combat separation based simply on color, but promote communication and education beforehand.   Considering how the world looks at Pagans in the first place; racism, prejudice & exclusion of others based on the race/gender/creed should NEVER have a place to call home in the Pagan community.

Brightest Blessings, Until We Meet Again…

~PW

Here Be LIONS

June 13, 2012 in Guests

“Hate isn’t just natural, Jason.  We NEED It, to survive.”Reverend Steve Newlin – Light of Day Institute – TRUE BLOOD, Season #2

 

Eversince I was a little girl, I have dreamed about Lions and had visions involving them.

The Lions were so very majestic, so very true to their purpose.  Family, Survival…Mate to make the family, Kill to feed them and survive.  It was practicality and fearlessness of the purpose that both seduced and intrigued me.

Like my opening statement – simplicity is what I feel that Sekhmet is trying to obtain.  SIMPLICITY; her purpose only has one result, one way or the other and that is what I feel attracted me the most to her – SIMPLICITY.

Sekhmet has many faces and many names, as I’ve come to realize in my studies.  A “three-headed goddess” whose invocation can be for more than one reason.  A wife, a mother, a healer and a destroyer.  No matter what forms she may take – each one has a common thread connecting it:  SIMPLICITY.

For, it is Simple to do as commanded – whether healing as a goddess or being the destructive force that creates “The Eye of Ra.”

…Create.  Destroy.  Either way, the simplicity of the choice (and/or command) is where I find the most comfort in Sekhmet – moreso than ANY god or goddess I may follow.

But let’s rewind for a moment.  I speak about her so intimately at times, that I forget anyone else reading this article may be thinking “Who in the Sam HELL is this Sekhmet character?  Her Auntie?  Her make-believe pal?”  Sooo…let’s take things back a step or two, to a textbook definition of Sekhmet:

In Egyptian mythology, Sekhmet[pronunciation?] (also spelled Sachmet, Sakmet, Sakhet, Sekmet, Sakhmet and Sekhet; and given the Greek name, Sachmis) was originally the warrior goddess as well as goddess of healing for Upper Egypt. She is depicted as a lioness, the fiercest hunter known to the Egyptians. It was said that her breath created the desert. She was seen as the protector of the pharaohs and led them in warfare… Sekhmet’s name comes from the Ancient Egyptian word “sekhem” which means “powerful one.” Sekhmet’s name suits her function and means, the (one who is) powerful. She also was given titles such as the (One) Before Whom Evil Trembles, the Mistress of Dread, Lady of Slaughter and She Who Mauls.  (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sekhmet)

 

Like all the gods and goddesses of any religion, certain rituals were performed by their most holiest of priests/priestesses, as well as the people themselves, in order to properly worship as well as placate.  Sekhmet’s main job was healing, but as part of the triumverate of gods & goddesses that comprised “The Eye of Ra” – some of her duties involved become the judge, jury and executioner.

Problem was, Sekhmet enjoyed her role as punisher almost more than she did her role as healer – so much so that she had to be tricked back into her primary role.  How did the Egyptians accomplish this?  BOOZE.  Per Wikipedia:

 

To pacify Sekhmet, festivals were celebrated at the end of battle, so that the destruction would come to an end. During an annual festival held at the beginning of the year, a festival of intoxication, the Egyptians danced and played music to soothe the wildness of the goddess and drank great quantities of wine ritually to imitate the extreme drunkenness that stopped the wrath of the goddess—when she almost destroyed humankind. This may relate to averting excessive flooding during the inundation at the beginning of each year as well, when the Nile ran blood-red with the silt from upstream and Sekhmet had to swallow the overflow to save humankind.  (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sekhmet)

Like any and every coin – Sekhmet has two sides; duality within her nature which is nothing if not specific to her purpose.

It’s this duality that I have found myself calling on, all week long.  I knew that this week would be an especially hard one, regarding some of my personal affairs.  Not hard in the “life or death” way but moreso regarding the subject of obstacles.

It is so easy, as a human being to find oneself ready to back off from an obstacle.  It’s so much easier to go around something, versus take it head on.  Not making a fuss looks good on all parts.  But it’s the courage to NOT look good, especially when it’s truly important — that I find I draw on from Sekhmet the most.  And while I have a LOT of experience not looking good in most situations (**lol**); moreso than ever, I find myself needing to courage to proceed regarding said personal affair. Fear of not looking good is the sole reason why I hesitate to press further, on a matter that could have a very serious outcome one way or the other.

While I’m not comfortable going into specifics, all I will say is that people the world over have fought against tyranny within their current and old workplaces.  My father, who is a retired Union officer for the Union that represented the bricklayers he worked with was my earliest example of “fighting against injustice” for people on the job, as well as those who may have been injured or had to leave due to issues related to people on their job.  He was well known the company over, for being the loud-mouthed cyclone of a man who would bark up every single tree from the top down, to make sure justice was served.  His fearlessness both inspired me and scared me – he knew he wasn’t liked by many, but he pressed forward regardless because it was about what was RIGHT.

My personal issue revolves around a similar situation.  It’s one that I find myself saying – just let it go, let them win.  That way you won’t be picked apart or made to look that bad guy in the end.  That way if you lose, at least you lose quietly.

FUG. That.

When it comes to knowing what one saw, heard, and experienced – I have a photographic memory.  And when it comes to taking on a BULLY; I’ve encountered many in my life, and I have never once let them get the best of me.  Doesn’t matter if they have $1 or $100 Billion; fair is fair and right is right.  And that’s all I will say about that.

So as this next trial arrives in the coming days, I look forward to it with the knowledge that the Lioness is riding me and will not let me fail.  I don’t wish anyone harm or damage in any way. I simply wish that wrongs be righted, once and for all.  I only wish that what should be, Will Be.

As I end this week’s column…a ritual prayer to Sekhmet, to overcome adversity – until we meet again, Blessed Be All:

 

“O Sekhmet, Source of Strength and Mercy,
I am beset by sorrow and many troubles;
wounded by injustice and the offensive
wrongdoing of others.
Grant me the strength to meet adversity
with quiet courage and unshaken will.

O Sekhmet, Overcomer of All Enemies,
Forgive my weakness and renew my hope.
Place your protective mantle around me,
help me remain steadfast and resolute
in front of my enemies.
Shield and defend me and my loved ones
from the ravages of fear and anxiety.

O Sekhmet, Who Rouseth the People
Grant me the fortitude to show forbearance
to those who would sin against me.
May I allow no trial, however severe,
to embitter my soul and destroy my trust.
May my heart not despair of human good.

O Sekhmet, I praise and honor Thee with gratitude for your help.

(http://allthingssekhmet.com/?p=78)

Salvation in the Summertime

June 1, 2012 in The First Dark

“To the gods I am indebted for having good grandfathers, good parents, a good sister, good teachers, good associates, good kinsmen and friends, nearly everything good. Further, I owe it to the gods that I was not hurried into any offense against them, though I had a disposition that, if opportunity had offered, might have led me to do something of this kind…” (‘Meditations’– Book I, by Marcus Aurelius).

I wanted to take an opposite “avenue of travel,” compared to the one I took in my last article. I feel as if I’ve spent the past 2-3 months in the deepest pit of darkest night. For today’s column, I wanted to focus more on the things that make me feel strongest – and also, how these things connect with my path as a Pagan.

Now normally, I would say ‘newfound Pagan’ or, ‘as a new convert to the Pagan lifestyle’ – but as we’renearing the two-year mark this coming October of 2012, I don’t feel that I can continue to say that.

So…what has changed for me, in the past year-and-a-half since converting to Paganism?

Miles and SCORES; not in the way that many would seem to attest too!

You see, I have to agree with one of my favourite Pagan authors on Patheos.com. There is a “fluffy bunny” aspect to most new Pagans, Druids and Wiccans, that is a complete turn off to those who have followed the path for a longer time. It’s a turnoff mostly because of all the common misconceptions and missteps made in the fervor for one’s faith, right off the bat. You know; we all dress like goths a’la “The Craft,” we all change our names to Morganna SilverDust – we all go out on the full moon and dance nude, and wear pentagrams and commune regularly with dear old Aunt Agnes.

This was not what changed for me. *chuckles* I have always described good life changes for me, as “small blessings and tiny miracles.”

These small blessings and tiny miracles? They have come a bit more frequently than they had before. YES, I do believe a lot of that is because of my new path, but not because my fairy godmother deemed it so. I believe it is because I’m more open now than I have ever been, to realizing that life is about so much more than just work-school-home-pay bills-sleep-rewind and do over. The power of being open to change is so very underrated in today’s society, as well as in the various faiths people subscribe to today. I’m a firm believer that we left it behind, as early Paganism faded away and Christianity took prevalence. To me, there is not term or faith or ritual that can replace the simple yet powerful practice of acceptance, to what is, what can be and what will be.

Fast forward, back to today. Converting did not solve all my problems in one fell swoop. But as I finally accepted who I was and what I believed in – I found life’s challenges much less challenging. With a clear head, I began to research old Kemet; the divine feminine and the mysteries of Aset and Sekhmet. What did I find? A connection to my past; connection to the very strong and controversial female family figures who’s daguerreotypes I’d looked at in passing but never really thought much more on.

Everything that led up to these women’s successes wasn’t necessarily a battle, but a travel down a pathway which finally opened them to the good that they could do and would do – for themselves and others.

Via an article by Margreet Meijer in ‘The Theosophist’ – April 1976, the author says: “Isis speaks as follows: ‘I have come to be a protector unto thee. I waft unto thee air for thy nostrils…have made whole they lungs. I have made thee like unto a god…Thou hast been made victorious and thou are mighty to prevail with the gods.’

The time shortly before my converting to Paganism, I had forgotten about that – about what I could do, and the fact that I didn’t have to settle for the ‘routine’ in order to maybe get a little time doing what I dreamed. I truly feel that Goddess opened up doors for me that I had firmly locked shut. I had shut down, my creativity and my true purpose, because I was not strong enough to do what I **wanted** to do in life. How ironic – that while my muscle disease had taken some things from me, it had opened up numerous pathways and opportunities to other things – one of them being my dream to be a writer; the other, to be a better and more attentive mother to my son.

Today’s article documents just one of the many changes in thought process – and acceptance of that change, that has made a real difference in my life as I continue to take steps down the path laid before me as a Pagan. I find strength in the divine feminine; that great Goddess that is represented in many different ways, through my female ancestors as well as through her stories and examples of triumph in the many different stories we find throughout our libraries today.

Here’s hoping for a wonderful weekend for all who’ve read this and beyond – enjoy that Full Moon (naked or otherwise lol)!

~PW