Top 10 Things I’d like to see removed from Pagan blogs; Snarkified.

And the 10 things are….

Spells, Shmells

It feels cheap and trashy, like going out and picking up a redemption certificate from a street preacher or claiming baptism just because a Priest road splashed you with his car. Make your spells. Sharing them…ugg. This isn’t a show off of magic hour. Paganism is about religion.

Rune and Tarot castings and other such ilk
Why do Pagan blog focus so much on divination? Fortune telling is either an entertainment only business; then what point does it have on a religious blog or….it is a religious practice? It’s just so over done. Everyone is doing it, has done it an right now is contemplating doing it. Stop it!

Crappy book reviews…
Does every 101 book need your very own review added to the scores already out there? So go ahead and add another review promoting another crappy book. I’ve already read ten reviews about that book. I’m skipping yours.

Jewelry, glitter and gold…
I totally get this one. You saw Paganism as a great way to make money and you’re creative too. Perfect combination….make some necklaces, bracelets and earrings and neat what-nots; slap something Paganish on it and proclaim yourself a Pagan. Rake in the money…

Yeah, why don’t you have a e-store?

Altar supplies, the cups and daggers and boxes more..
Ditto for the jewelry. Selling it doesn’t belong on a blog. Yeah, argue all you want. Bite me. Sharing those photos because you want everyone to see your altar isn’t the same thing. But trying to sell me graveyard dust because you live next door to one, get real. I can take a walk to my local one just as well. Or better yet…use the dust from inside my home! Didn’t ya know the whole earth is a graveyard!

Black backgrounds
Those poor misunderstood Goths, Pagans stole your black style. Give it back! Stop Appropriating other Cultures! This just doesn’t’ apply to those half breeds of Pagan Goths; poor souls.

Honestly my poor aging eyes can not handle the extreme contrast of back on white or worse black on red. Smarten up whipper-snapper…you want your elders to read your youthful thoughts.

Correspondence lists
This element beget that sign, that beget this time, that beget that stone…..*snore…..*
Utter dry drivel that has me chewing on my nails in search for water. Ugg…There are so many different lists and none of them agree. I’ll let you in on a secret. They are made up! So make up your own! This is nothing more that someone’s UPG becoming tradition. *winks*

Never Again! Never Again the Burning Times!
Holds her hands up in the air…
Alright, alright…it’s gotten harder to find this meme cropping up anymore. Utter rubbish of myth making, one hell of a case study of telling a lie long enough, people will believe it. But to make sure it stays down, it’s made it to The List.
Proceeds the kick the meme backing into obscurity.

All other religions are big meanie poopy heads posts
You know the ones that trash whatever religion the newly converted Pagan was, like Christianity is all evil, or that Catholics stole Pagan deities and yup this crazy reason is why they should be scorned, ridiculed. Enough already. Take your hate pettling elsewhere. Your stinking up my air.

Love and Light, New Age-y Crud
Light workers of the World un-tie! Guess what….another case of appropriation. Those aren’t Pagans. Of course some might be Pagans….kinda like Gothic Pagans. But the practices are not Pagan. Those are new age-y practices that come from the mighty jumble pot of Pot…that back in the ‘70’s our parents…hmm and I guess for some of us grandparents or great grandparents poured into various religious ideas and practices and stirred. What baked out…..was a chewy mix of new age ideas. The age of Aquarius is not here.

 

And The Big Disclaimer:

What really sucks is that I may need this. Actually it’s a certainty. I do snarky humor at my best of times and though it might find a spot that stings, humor is what is meant. I do believe that there is nothing under the sun that can’t be laughed at and made fun of or poked with humor. If you found offense, please take a deeper look inside yourself to find the why before attempting to take bites of my delicious head. And I firmly hope the Paganism as a whole as grown up enough to poke fun at it self and laugh.

Laughter is medicine for the soul.
Open wide!

Pagans, Hugging, and the Fine Art of Consent: A PSA

Okay, before I can even get started on what I want to say, just hop on over to the link below, read through it and come on back. I have some words I need to lay down. I’ll wait.

Pagans, Hugging, and the Fine Art of Consent: A PSA

Okay. You made it back. Good. What did you think about the article? What did you think about all the comments? Good. Keep those in mind for a moment longer. I want to try something here.  I have a video to offer….I’ll add it as a link….take a viewing and come on back.

Tea Consent – YouTube

Made it back again, great! What do you think? It’s still about the same issues, consent. It really doesn’t matter what the topic is, be it hugs, or tea or even sex.

I think the problem is that in our Western Culture, society tends to allow things to be swept under the rug often for the sake of status quo. And frankly change is hard and often painful. If you take away respect for consent, take away the right for a person to establish boundaries for themselves, take away the right to refuse hugs….I hope you can see where this is going.

Let me put it simply, we live in a Rape culture. This culture finds tons of ways to excuse various violations of consent. It’s pervasive. If you are not aware of consent and the way you may be violating them, then you are contributing to this Rape culture. Just take a look at the news and you see reports of young adults getting into trouble because they had no idea what they were doing was wrong! Is this a lack of education or them being exactly what this culture expects them to be?

I would love to be able to say that everyone would want a culture that respects individuals and their rights to have and enforce boundaries over their own body. The article about hugging and the comments show me that as a society we have a lot more to do in educating people about the basics of consent.

 

Dude, Where’s My Altar?

You won’t find any pictures of the various altars I’ve had over the years here. Sorry. It’s not because I feel that it’s too private, it’s not. I’ve only once taken a picture of my altar and that was back when I was starting daily practice. I remember taking the picture for sharing on the web, so I know it’s out there somewhere floating in cyberspace as bits of data freezing that moment in time. Over the years I’ve become more relaxed about keeping an altar; partly from necessity and partly from intentional laziness.

I’ve moved many times in the years that I’ve been Pagan. And I found that packing up what became an essential focus in my life very depressing. Too often it would be months before I would see those cherished items again. I become too attached to my altar.  My practice vanished the moment it was packed away.

I felt that I had packed up my heart with it and that hurt. I knew that my practice and faith wasn’t bound in physical items, that it was what is in my heart that matters most. Teaching that to my heart was not easy.

I’ve been in a stable place for the last five or six years now and I still don’t have an altar set-up. I now have an altar box that houses my prized possessions and it’s fairly portable as well. I still set up a full altar when the need arises but mostly it’s packed away. My children are still young and this place is too small to devote the amount of space I’d prefer to keeping my altar out in the open.

Some things I don’t want to deal with; “No running with the athame in the house.” or “No, spit that out! Charcoal is not for eating. ”  Yes, I would have to say these things to my children. Going out in the garden has already taught me this.  How does mulch look yummy? That’s not how I want them to commune with an Earth Goddess. Perhaps when they are older and in more control of their impulses, I’ll start again if the spirit moves me.

But I’ve learned a lot being an altar-less Pagan. The Divine isn’t sitting somewhere I can see, reminding me everyday where my thoughts need to be. I had to double my efforts at first to stay on that spiritual level. Then I’ve found the Divine lurking in every corner of the house and then outside and down the road and in friends homes. The Divine is everywhere.  Somehow I had misplaced that little fact when I set up my altar. My mind knew it but my heart had not learned it.

I’m learning the value of letting go. I’m possessive naturally and this is a bit of shadow work that still needs attending. When I become attached it’s hard to undo it without abandoning the whole; no matter what it is. (grins) Got to love early childhood traumas.

I’m learning my practice isn’t dependent on an altar at all. When and where and how I choose to worship and honor the Divine does not need to follow a set formula. I move with the spirit when it calls me. I have the freedom of being a solitary, of being an eclectic   Hellenic Pagan. I am free to accept the guidance of the Divine without trying to shove Their direction in square holes because I’m too rigid. One Divine smack-down is enough in one lifetime, thank you very much.

I believe. I pray. I worship. I give thanks. Some days I work a little magic. Some days I don’t. I do my best to live right, to do right, to find meaning every day. I see the Divine everywhere. The whole world has become my altar.

Inspired by: A is for AltarPagan Blog Prompts & Pagan Blog Project 2013

Launching Hampton Roads Pagans

English: Rotated to aprox. mag. north. Newport...
English: Rotated to aprox. mag. north. Newport News is seen at the upper left. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’ve been busy today creating a new blog site, Hampton Roads Pagans; creating the accompanying Facebook page (here) and getting in the first bit of information on it. I’m looking to create a local news outlet for Hampton Roads, VA area.

After attending the local Broom and Brew meeting last Saturday night, I’m more convinced than ever that a local Pagan Press outlet is needed for the area. In one meeting I found out more of what’s going on in the community than is available online. The community here is still alive and thriving. What news there is, isn’t making it out to the greater community. I’d like to offer a way to communicate what’s going on, what events are happening and perhaps to rebuild a communication network that had thrived here.

I can not create this alone. I need writers. I need press releases. I need feedback!

Happy August 1st!!

It’s a beautiful morning today and I’m itching to get outside and play as I know soon winter will be here. But right now, everything is perfect. I’m going to bake cookies later today. I know my girls will loving helping and eating them. I’m seriously missing the smell of fresh-baked bread on this day. I am still mourning the loss of my starter. (Soon, my lovely, soon I will try again.)  But today is also Lammas or Lughnassh depending on which tradition you follow. So how about a little blog round-up…

From Confessions of a Pagan Soccer Mom….a simple candle ritual.
Next stop is The Domestic Pagan where you can pick up some general info on the holiday along with a few game ideas for the kids.
Or spin by The Deepest Well for a bit of folklore on Lammas.
Followed by Pagan Blog Prompts, which today’s post makes a great personal meditation.
Take a sit with TFS Magnum and enjoy a “musical interlude in honour of Lughnassh.”
Do stop by the Circle of the Year for a reading of John Barleycorn accompanied with classic pictures.
Let’s break bread with Blue Star Owl, with a delicious recipe for a sweet and savory bread.

Don’t forget to pick up a coloring page for the kids (or yourself) here!

And finely, August 1 is much more that a religious holy day. Take a spin over to The Holiday Whiz to see what else is happening!

May Your Day Be Blessed!

OC-gate Links

from Microsoft Office

I am posting this collection of links in raw form so that anyone who wishes to follow this OC-gate may do. It’s also for me to keep track of the comments coming into the various blogs listed below. I will be updating this list if it continues to grow.

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/agora/2012/07/sacredbody-sacred-earth/

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/paganswithdisabilities/2012/07/the-venus-of-willendorf-and-laughing-bhudda-stereotype-vs-reality/

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/pantheon/2012/07/my-fat-is-my-business/

http://witchwhispers.blogspot.com/2012/07/pagan-conversation-of-obesity.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+TheFireflyChronicles+%28The+Firefly+Chronicles%29

http://paganinparadise.blogspot.com/2012/07/normal.html

http://shackledspirit.blogspot.com/2012/07/mourning-discipline-and-responsibility.html

http://fatpagan.blogspot.com/2012/07/obesity-crisis-hits-pagan-community.html?m=1

http://worksofliterata.org/2012/07/20/speaking-from-thin-privilege/

Top Five Web Sites…

Top Five Pagan Websites for the Seeker

stock art from Microsoft office

  1. The Witches Voice  – Also know as Witchvox. Wiccan site for local networking, informative articles and news of interest to Pagans.
  2. Patheos’ Pagan Channel –  Features blogs, resource library, book club and more.
  3. The Cauldron Forum – Especially their article A Pagan Primer. A no nonsense forum for Pagans of all traditions.
  4. Turk’s Net – Repository of Pagan humor. The Field Guide is worth a good giggle.
  5. Kaaos – Features articles with a dash of witty humor.