Speaking of Ancestors

The far right people put a great deal of emphasis on racial identity and ancestry. In the UK that’s in the news a lot at the moment, and it’s a sad state of affairs.
Ancestry is important – it shapes us culturally and genetically. How far can you trace your family? How much of who you are comes from your blood lines? I have Welsh, Cornish and Irish in the mix, I’ve been told I have Jewish blood from a long way back, and no doubt Roman and Saxon and Celtic along the way too. I’m British, utterly, which to me, means being a hodge-podge of all kinds of things.
Druidry identifies three kinds of ancestors – of blood, of place and of tradition. Blood ancestry is straightforward enough. The people who gave us our bodies and shapes. Ancestors of place are those who lived on the land before we did – so even if we have no direct blood ties, we can still honour those who have shared the space we now occupy. Whatever your background and country, how you relate to more indigenous peoples is complicated and a minefield, but treating them with honour and respect is vital, hearing their stories. Ancestors of tradition are those who did what we now do. That may mean the ancient druids, but for writers that will also mean the authors who have inspired you. I would include George Eliot on that list for me, for example.
Ancestry is not a simple matter of blood. it is all the rich diversity of our heritage. Ancestry does not divide us, it connects us to each other. We all climbed out of the saem primordial stew after all. We share genes with all living things.
http://curryandmotown.wordpress.com/2009/06/13/british/

My Spirituality and how it came about

Growing up, I knew I wasn’t being taught everything because, I knew things that wasn’t taught in school or church. Things like, how to know what animals said when they came up to me. Or knowing how to heal them when they needed it. I knew that my invisible friends were spirits and not imaginary. In addition, I knew what I could and could not say to adults because I knew how they were feeling.

Now I am not talking about things children learn, as they get older. I’m talking about their actual feelings. I knew because I could feel it. And, almost as if I could read their minds, I knew what they would and would not accept. Like me kissing a girl instead of a boy when I was four or, my talking with the animals and spirits. For years I didn’t say a thing about anything other than what I was taught.

Until we were taking a trip, one day and I started asking questions about where we were going. As they explained whom we were going to see, I slipped up and said “Oh you mean the ones who lives…” and proceeded to describe every portion of their abode – from the street all the way back to the salt block sitting in the back forty. You would have thought I suddenly sprouted fangs and was going to attack them.

As they said the words, I had worked hard never to hear, “Never do that again! That is of the devil!” I knew I messed up and revealed my lifelong secret. I would have to work harder than ever to cover up for that mistake. It wasn’t enough for me to apologize and promise never to do it again, they dug until they found the one thing I mentioned that was wrong – pictures. As they went off on me with “See we told you you had never been here before. You described the wrong pictures.” This, of course, triggered questions from the branch of the family we were visiting. When my grandmother finished with her discourse, their response only made me cringe more. “Oh we took those pictures down a couple of months ago.” I so wanted to hide. Instead, I did the next best thing, I slipped out the door to go play with the rest of the children.

I said all this to say, I was born doing what I do. For many years, I searched for a religion, which believed as I did. Pieces of what I believed showed up in many religions but never all of it. Finally, giving up looking for a religion, I decided to be spiritual. When I did, a way opened up for me to learn about Spiritualism. They understood my frustration and disillusionment with religion.

One woman in particular was very understanding. So much so, she decided to take me under her wings, and became my mentor. She spent several years teaching me what I did and how to control it. In addition, she tried to teach me other things that I just couldn’t grasp like Tarot. However, in the process, she discovered I used Psychometry to give messages and that they were more descriptive than when I gave messages without using it. After a year of teaching me, she decided to groom me to take over her teaching position, which took me a couple of years to get my courage up for that. Plus, I didn’t want her to stop teaching others. But the day came when she did and told me it was time for me to step up and take her place. I did, for a couple of years before I had to move on.

My spiritual beliefs came about as you can tell, from birth to trying out and learning different things. They encompass things like, “Thoughts are things so think only positive thoughts.” “Life is a circle, what you wish on others will return to you 10 fold.” “Mother Earth regenerates our energy if we don’t block her.” “No matter where you are on your path, you are okay as you are where you are suppose to be at any given time.” I tend to follow the Native American Belief mostly although I have bits and pieces of other beliefs mixed in. There is no name for my belief as far as I know. I figure it is just me being me – always going the opposite direction from the flow.

So what makes me a pagan? I don’t believe as the Christians, I talk to the dead, and I don’t call my higher power God.

Well, this is the best I can put into words how I believe. I know there is much more to it, but the words won’t come. So I will leave you with well wishes.

Have a great day everyone!

Bo Perkins

Automatic Drawing

Hi, All,

Just wanted to see if anyone has ever heard of Austin Osman Spare and his automatic drawing.  I’ve recently discovered him and was wondering on your thoughts about his ways of magick dealings.  He sounds rather complicated, but very intriguing.  I guess I’m more interested in ‘how’ he did what he did rather than ‘why’.

Words of Wisdom

Edits! Edits! Edits! Okay now as a author, I know these blasted things are apart of my job. But I have had three different editors in not even a two year time span. Each one was different. I thought I was learning from them, which I did but now with my latest one, I’m finding I’m doing so many things wrong. I feel like a nweb. I’m confused and frustrated.
I’ve had that authors need to have thick skin. I don’t know if that is true or not. I don’t know what to think. I love writing. I love learning different things but now I’m swimming in a pool of self doubt.

Maybe it’s because I thought as I grew as a writer the edits would come easier. I was wrong? Now I don’t know what to think.

Sel;f doubt is NOT something an author should dwell on. Help y’all I need some words of wisdom today. I was looking forward to blogging again. The women here were so kind to even offer to give up days of their own. Then I got the edits and my heart sank.

Will anyone out there answer my call for help?
I hope so.

Big Hugs,
Raven

GLBT Paganism

One of the (many) things I love about paganism and the pagan community, is its acceptance of people who aren’t straight and conentional in their relationships. I’ve met some fabulous gay, bi, transgender and polyamorous folk along the way, and they’ve really inspired me to explore my own identity. But then, Druidry is non-dogmatic, and that includes not having ‘one true way’ for how relationships are supposed to be.

Druidry is very much about connection, for me. Not having any assumptions about what shape a connection ‘should’ have opens up the ways in which we relate to each other, to the land, the ancestors, the gods and the non-human denizens of this world.

Here’s a little something from Enchanted Waters, which follows on from this line of thought.

Precarious though it was, Bracken squatted down, so that she could reach into the pool. She wetted her hand, then rose, sprinkling the water over Catherine.
“Blessings of water, healing and cleansing, washing away the past. Blessings of this place be upon you, and peace be in your heart,” she said.
“Thank you.”
For the first time, they looked at each other properly, standing almost nose to nose on the stone. Bracken saw dark eyes full of melancholy, and a tender, compassionate, wounded spirit. She wanted to reach out and console, but not knowing why this woman suffered, she held back. Some people were victims of their own mistakes, and she didn’t want to support anyone in not dealing with their problems.
“You’re a witch or a priestess of something then?” Catherine asked.
“Priestess and Druid,” Bracken replied.
“Does this sort of thing happen to you a lot?”
“A fair bit, yes. I seem to attract it.” She had a feeling there were things she needed to do here, and tried to find their shape. Words to say. Moves to make. Sometimes all it took was a small gesture or observation to set people on the right path.
Trusting her instincts, she took Catherine’s hands in hers.
“You’ll find a way through this,” she said. “Accept your own feelings, embrace them, work with them. If you understand yourself and your own needs, everything else will be a lot clearer.”
“I know. I just wish I knew where to start.”
“You’ve already started.” Bracken leaned closer, placing a chaste kiss on Catherine’s brow. The woman sighed deeply, tension seeping from her. “You’ll be fine. You’re strong, good and brave. You will find a way through.” With that, she relinquished Catherine’s hands, smiled, and turned away. The time had come to leave, as she still had a few miles to walk.

http://tinyurl.com/l7rwot

So why did I write a book about angels?

This is a pagan blog, so why is my first book, “The Fallen Fae” about angels? The book is based on the concept of the Fae (the fairies) being the fallen angels of heavan when Lucifer lead the original rebellion against God because he would no bow down to Adam and Eve.

I always thought of the Fae as specific entity or species of mythology and the domain of paganism. So why was there a Christian explanation of the Fae? This got me thinking and to explain, we need to go back and do some defining of Paganism.

There are many differing definitions of paganism but the general consensus is that anything pre-Christian is classed as pagan. This opens up a whole new world of possibilities as there is a lot of history and a lot of “religions” that held the worlds imagination before the beginning of Christianity.

If by definition any pre-Christian is pagan, then everything including the Druids, Norse, Wiccan, Celtic, Ancient Greek, Ancient Roman, Aboriginal, Taoism, Hindi and many more both living and dead religions are pagan.

Some of the Christian rituals that have been incorporated into our society are actually pagan rites that were blended into Christianity to make the assimilation easier. There are numerous examples of this and many major Christian holidays are celebrated around the same time as many pagan events that correspond to natures calendar, such as Christmas adn the summer or winter solstice (depending on what part of the himisphere you reside). Another example from a different pagan “religion” is the Christmas tree that was originally believed to be in honour of Odin, the Norse God.

So, if Christianity has blended some elements from pagan cultures, is it possible to do the reverse and blend some Christian theories into paganism? For example, angels. But not all angels are Christian. If you use the Greek “Angelos” meaning a super natural being, then that can incorporate both Christian and pagan entities.

The Christian angels such as Archangels and angels of death have the same chores as Celtic Fairies and Norse Valkyrie. A lot of pagan religions have “super natural beings” that have the same standing as the angels, such as bringing the souls of the recently dead to “heaven”, “Valhalla” or the “Underworlds”.

So I wrote a fantasy novella on the theory of Christianity’s version of the creation of the Fae, because it was another aspect on a mythology of many pagan religions. And whichever branch of Paganism you follow take care to note the similiarities and differences between it and many other belief systems.

Cheers

Connie

www.conniewood.co.cc

What it means to me to be a pagan

The definitions I found for ‘pagan’ confused me. I am not a country dweller nor do I consider myself rustic. And I don’t understand why pagan is grouped in with heathen, an irreligious or hedonistic person. I certainly don’t think of myself that way. The only definition that makes any sense to me is: a follower of a polytheistic religion, not religious.

For me, being a pagan means the freedom to worship how and when I want, whether it’s before an altar I made or outside beneath the moon. I prefer the freedom of the constraints of a religion that restricts one’s thinking and treats women as inferior. Being a pagan is being close to nature and respecting all the gifts the earth has to offer mankind from helpful herbs to the wonder of a breathtaking sunset. As a pagan I embrace a spiritual way of life over a religious one.

I prefer to keep my personal beliefs to myself, but I will say that part of my belief has to do with the laws of the universe in reference to dualities such as light and dark, good and evil, male and female, etc. I believe it is all about balance and that reflects into my personal life as well.

I would like to clear up one misconception about pagans. I do not worship the Devil. The Devil plays no part in pagan worship. The Devil is a Christian belief. I hope this helps to dispel some of the rumors of pagans being evil Devil worshippers. I feel I am no different from a person of another religion. I just choose to be free from the bonds of organized religion.

When I am outside in that quiet part of morning, breathing fresh morning air and gazing at the mountains painted shades of red by the awakening sun, I feel close to the deities. That is a spiritual connection that cannot be found inside a church. This is what it means to me to be a pagan.

I am curious as to how other pagans feel. Any thoughts?

Kelley

‘Timeless tales of romance, conflict & magic’

http://www.kelleyheckart.com/

http://www.myspace.com/phantomqueen3

http://twitter.com/CelticChick

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