Wednesday, April 27, 2011

pagan art journaling {week 13}

This week’s prompt: prayers and spells


What do you think: are prayers and spells different from one another? Is one more effective than the other? Do they work together? Separately?

Here are some of my thoughts:


Monday, April 25, 2011

quick note

For those of you who have sent me your email info for the art journal circle. They've been noted and I will respond after the 1st.

Busy with birthdays and easter last weekend, my brother's wedding this week.

Soon! I promise. May will be a quieter month and I'll be freer for hashing out the details then.


Wednesday, April 20, 2011

pagan art journal circle

Ok. Let's do it. Art journal circle amongst pagans. If you're curious and don't know what I'm talking about, go here.

For any of you who are interested, email me at: with your email address, home address, and we can start hashing out the details. (Some of you can I can track via blogger, but others I can't find emails for, so if you could all just send them my way and we'll  (I'll) start organizing things).

Oh, and deadline for sending in your info:

May 1st (cause I'm all about the symmetry of it).


pagan art journaling {week 12}

this week’s prompt: best lesson(s) from family and how it affects your path


Before I go on, I would like to make the following disclaimer: families aren’t easy. Mine isn’t, yours probably isn’t, but inevitably they influence who we become.

Recent conversations with friends who have family situations that are “easier” than mine (wee bit of context: 1 divorce, 1 remarriage, 1 adoption, foster kids= 4 siblings with 2 mothers and 4 different fathers)… anyways, friends who have had relatively “normal” family environments have revealed that they have few if any positive memories of family.

IMG_4714I personally have a hard time with this. I’ve watched kids come through my home who have gone through the worst of the worst in terms of abuse and neglect, I’ve spent countless hours slamming doors and arguing with my parents, and we don’t keep in touch very well, but I have always cherished the good memories that I have from my family. Maybe this is because I grew up aware of what others didn’t have, or because it’s a defense mechanism to block out the bad memories I have, but I think that the average individual who grows up in an “average, moderately fucked up, but normal” family, should be able to celebrate the things that family has given them.

Hence this week’s prompt. I’ve already talked about the greatest gift my mom gave me in terms of spiritual freedom, so I tried to take it a step further and think about how I apply the morality that I was raised with into my current practices. My parents taught us to be independent and to follow our own paths, they allowed us to grow and be who we are without being overly attached to their visions of what they needed us to be (sometimes they were better than others at this, sometimes not…) But for me, as I work on my meditation practice as a tool to distinguish between what is a reaction and illusion based on the reaction, and what is really happening around me, this lesson of letting others be who they are without imposing my will on them, has been invaluable.

I’m explaining this as well as I’d like, but hopefully you’ll catch my meaning as it is.


I know that life isn’t all about light and happiness, so maybe there are lessons you’ve learned from your family that stem from the darkness. I know I have. Hell, just above I was mentioning that I saw kids from really messed up situations walk through our doors on a regular basis, and honestly, I learned a lot about gratitude from the experience.

But I’ve also learned a lot from other familial challenges, like doing the work even when others give up, like respecting boundaries and need for privacy, like being open to others even when they seem standoffish and need time, all of which effects my path and my choices on it.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Episode Three: Terrible Threes

Ok, so Episode 3 is up and running.

What is it all about you ask? Well, a whole bevy of things really.

General updates in the mayhem that is my life right now!
Mesoptamian Art and the God Enki
Pagan Art Journaling Updates: Realisations, Self-Knowledge, Spirituality and Doing the Work


Thursday, April 14, 2011

moon in the zodiac: virgo

Today the moon entered Virgo, which means means that today should be a good day for taking care of details, cleaning house, and organizing things.

It's a good day to do some research and analyze details because it's a day for calm objective analysis, so go read about the world and mull over the details...



new project? pagan art journal circle

Ok, I might be the biggest glutton for punishment but when I was listening to the podcast Paperclipping Roundtable, I was struck by the fact that I want to participate in an art journal circle.

Don't know what a circle is? It's basically a group of people who sign up to co-create a book/collection of work together. So, for example, I would do a page, then mail the book on to the next person on the list, who would then mail it to the next person, etc, etc, until the book gets mailed full circle. The book can go around once, or several times. It's up to the participants.

I think it would be fun and since you only make one page, it only really requires a little bit of work... no huge time commitment, you know? Minimal commitment.

And then it could be about something pagan/spiritual related. Like words of inspiration. Fragments of wisdom that struck a cord. Advice. Thoughts. Meditations on the divine. We could pick one theme and run with it, or just let everyone pick their own topic and pass it on in order to see what everyone comes up with.

But then I wonder about logistics. For example, would it be fair that only one person would be left with a book? Should all participants start a book and mail it on until it comes back to them? How do you keep track of the book(s) so that no one drops the chain?

I don't know. What do you think? Would it be fun? Or just too much work? Would anyone be interested in trying it?


moon in virgo: scrapbooked

Today the moon enters virgo, so since I’m on a lunar kick at the moment, I did another page about it:


With of course, the pre-requisite blank spaces so that I can go in and add more observations over the course of a couple moons in virgo so I can make connections about what a virgo moon means for me, the capricorn.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

pagan art journal {week 11}

This week’s prompt: books


What books have you loved? Which books have influenced you most? What was the first book you ever read about paganism and what did you think of it? And what do you think of it now?


Mine was A Witch Alone by M Green and I still think it’s a great first book to start with. Skimming through it again, before doing this prompt, I was amazed by how much she hints at that I only understand now. The same applies with V. Crowley’s book Wicca.

I don't speak about it much here, but I am a total bookworm. As in, I was the kid who would walk to school reading a book, who would be late for class because I all caught up in what I was reading on my walk to school, who stayed up all night reading instead of sleeping. I was the roommate who would tune out flat mates while reading, much to their frustration. I am the wife who will ignore her husband for days on end while binge reading a good novel. I am also the guest you'll invite to the cottage who will get lost in a good book while everyone else is drinking and playing boardgames.

I also did a master's degree in English Literature and love it when I get to talk about fiction and poetry with students. I love watching them come to life when a story speaks to them. I love the moment they realize that books tell them about the world they live in and they don't have to be dry and boring. Even if you don't like the book, the story can reveal so much about the world and society it was written in. I love books. And I will probably always have obsessive tendencies when it comes to reading. I'm working on it, but book are friends to me. They've taught me about the world, myself, history, philosophy. More than movies, more than TV, books speak to me.

What does this have to do with this week's prompt? Everything! Nothing? No really, everything. Because the book that I wrote about brought wicca to life for me. It opened the door. Before the film industry started putting out movies about wicca/paganism, before wicca was even really a movement, before I found witchvox or started going to public circles, I read this book and started working on carving out a new spiritual path for myself.

I devoured the book and then reread it and put notes in the margins and highlighted pieces of text that spoke to me. And I go back now and realize 2 things:

1. that I highlighted WAY too much text!
2. that the things that spoke to me then have become so deeply internalized that it is surprising to see the revealing epiphany comments in the margin and realize... this is where it all began. This is it.

Oh sure, it's a 101 book but that's what it was meant to be. But I also recognize deeper truths in the text. Things she was pointing at that I didn't see then. Regardless of how many 101 books I've read and passed on, this one will always stay on my shelf, if for nothing more than sentimental reasons.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

today i am

Thinking: about diversity issues again. About immigration and integration and the ways that culture is fluid and fixed. I work in a very ethnically diverse school and my students are always challenging me to rethink my cultural assumptions. It fascinates me but also reveals some of my latent hypocrisies... for example, I'm totally ok with my students holding on to their cultural narratives but condemn my in-laws for the pressures they put on their sons by expecting them to maintain old world traditions that no longer exist in their home country, while demanding that they be successful in Canada. How can you expect one form of integration and yet reject the shift in values that comes with it? Why move to a country in order to have a better life, only to reject the values of said country? And why am I willing to accept this imbalance in my students but not in my in-laws?

Yeah, big thoughts about diversity and immigration these days....

Creating: Scrapbook pages with newspaper clippings in them. Historical narratives and personal memorabilia combined.
Planning: to finish episode 3 podcast this evening! Here's to episode 3 being almost done, and 1131 feed hits as I write this. That's just crazy people. For an intro and 2 episodes so far. Wowzas! 
Reading: Sweetness in the Belly by Camille Gibb. Such a good book. If you haven't read it, you should. It really does a good job at telling you things through the bits of story she omits and the pieces she focuses on. It was also interesting to hear another side of the starving Ethiopian famine that I grew up with. You know, the "eat everything on your plate cause there are starving kids in Ethiopia" line that our mothers (in my generation) fed us when we complained about the food in front of us.

Wait, was that only my mom? Was I the only child who petulantly sassed back with "well, then just send it to them then, cause I don't like it?"

....Yeah, I didn't think so....

It was a story that brought a nation to light to me. It taught me a bit more about a history that I was woefully oblivious of. Oh, I know that it's fiction and I'll have to learn more from more reliable sources, but still...
Listening: Inciting a Riot podcast and his discussion on black and white. My response... I think maybe part of the reason we use white is because it reflects back, rather than absorbs like black. Though I do agree that a black candle would have more of that particular colour energy latent within it. White is a blank slate for me. A blank canvas that I can write onto and have reflected back out into the universe, be it magically, or literally in terms of art and writing.  But it is intriguing to see how this idea of blankness is alternately viewed as either positive or negative, depending on cultural context. Ultimately, I think it be both and that our particular association is what the colour reflects back to us. So if I associate a certain colour, be it white or red, with marriage, then that association is what the colour will create for me. I married in white for my husband (because it was one of those things that spoke of wedding for him and made him happy.... it was one of those compromises that weddings and marriage are about) but was uncomfortable with the blankness of that slate, so wrote over it with character! (not literally of course, but with cut and accessories, and all that good stuff)... which has nothing to do with magic (I'm just in a rambling mood today apparently). But yeah, colour... I think that culturally we have a longstanding association with white being "pure" because it is such a ready medium that we use for everything, from whitewashing a wall, to typing onto a white screen... white is the background colour that is used for neutraly receiving information, which, since we expect it to be that, reflects that intention back to us. (all of this makes more sense I'm sure, if you listen to his episode...)

Realizing: that I'm not sure when work got so busy that even though I feel ill, I can't actually call in sick. Seriously. What's up  with that? Or is it just a sign that I feel too attached to my students' success/work that I feel bad leaving them when they need me...
Feeling: a wee bit ill but otherwise energetic.

Monday, April 11, 2011

etsy artist feature: HerbanDevi

Oh My God!

Yoga pants with skirt and pockets... colour me tickled pink:

I could live in these. Seriously. If I could maintain a professional look and wear these to work, they would become my favourite yoga pants... I'm sure of it... Not that I've tried them as of yet, but I love the idea and know they're right up my alley. Ass coverage, lotus design, colour! Sign me up!

She also sells more overtly pagan themed designs...


Friday, April 8, 2011

today i am

Viewing: this Coming Home youtube video because of my coworker (I'm flying home for my middle brother's wedding at the end of the month and she keeps singing that I'm coming home...)


Creating: Posters for disability awareness featuring famous people with disabilities

Planning: A kazillion work projects! Diversity, Disability, Conferences, Purchases, Decor, Multicultural holiday awareness...

Reading: The Essential Golden Dawn by Cicero and Cicero

Listening: to the same thing I'm watching...

Realizing: that I'm full of spring fever energy and doing so many things that it'll make you head spin

Feeling: positive and productive


Thursday, April 7, 2011

scrapbooked: moon in taurus

Eureka! I’ve found my solution for adding information into my scrapbooked book of shadow pages (mentioned this in podcast #2)


Blank squares for more information!

I’m not normally drawn to lavender or baby pastel colours, but I chose it because they are the colours associated with Taurus, or at least they are in my astrology book.


Wednesday, April 6, 2011

today i am

Thinking: About holidays!!! Where should I go? I have 4 weeks... what to do, what to do... And can I afford it if we buy a house this year?
Creating: a Sarah McLachlan lyrics inspired mini art journal booklet (I'll share when it's done.... she's got a lot of great lines for self-analysis) AND a green cleaning tag booklet of cleaning recipes.
Planning: my next podcast (sneak peek: Mesoptamian art, Enki the god of craft and wisdom, pagan art journaling updates)
Reading: about Mesoptamia & the history of the Golden Dawn/Western Hermetic tradition
Listening: Sarah McLachlan (can you tell that I just went to her concert and I'm currently obsessed)?
Realizing: That I might have enabled a toxic relationship/friendship because I always accommodate my friend's needs at the expense of my own because she's so sensitive in nature
Trying: to figure out what the hell I'm going to do about it!
Feeling: a little overwhelmed by some of the clarity that my practice is bringing into my life these days. Some days I wish I could crawl back into ignorance and ignore some of the dynamics I've contributed to creating in my life. Ok, I don't really mean that, but sometimes the realisations are untimely and yet long overdue. They're both a relief and a source of sadness. But I'm glad for them nonetheless. I'm glad that my meditation practice continues to bring so much clarity into my mundane, every day life.


pagan art journaling {week 10}

this week’s prompt: fear


What do you fear on this path? What things give you pause and make you wonder about paganism with apprehension? What things have you experimented with that have given you shivers?


For me, there are a lot of things on this path that I fear. Oh, don’t get me wrong, overall I love this path and all the wonderful things it brings to my life.


But I do have fears. I fear the idea that maybe this is all an illusion. That maybe I took too many drugs as a teen and now what I think I am seeing and experiencing is all just a series of well disguised flashbacks or wishful thinking. I fear that maybe, just maybe, I might be a little bit crazy! And that pathwork, which opens me up to so many things, might be opening me up a bit too much…

That maybe, by opening the floodgates, I won’t always be able to control (or be equipped to deal with) what comes my way.

Or, on the other end of the spectrum, that my fears and need for a safety net will prevent me from opening up to experience some of the greater gifts and truths that are out there.

Mostly though, I fear the what if, what if, what if…

Monday, April 4, 2011

etsy artist feature: southernbogprims

I can smell spring in the air and am thinking about all the things to start growing in my garden...

This year I probably won't be planting a garden because my husband and I are looking to buy a home, and well, frankly, I'm not sure I have it in me to co-garden with my in-laws again! Besides, I want to try some different types of gardening: lunar gardening, biodynamics, and/or permaculture. Do any of you have any experience with these? Cause I'd love to know if you have any good resources, links, etc to share with me so I can start dreaming of my own garden...


to pagan supermoot or not to pagan supermoot

I'm a baby podkiner but I was invited to join this year's Pagan Supermoot in Salem, MA and I'm debating whether or not I should go. I mean really, I'm not a big podcaster. I put out a show about once a month and am still working on finding my podcasting voice (and the time to podcast). And going would require me to break the imaginary 4th wall (theatre term) and I need to decide whether or not I'm comfortable doing so.

But I am intrigued.

I mean, it's Salem. I've never been to Salem. And even though I don't buy into the witchy history of Salem (mass hysteria, neighbour basing = yes, actual witches = no), it would be fun to go visit a town that turns witchiness into a tourist attraction! Don't you agree?

And then there'd be the chance to ACTUALLY meet the other podkin out there, pick their brains and get to know what they're really like, you know? That's kind of intriguing. And I've been listening to their shows for a while now (they inspired my desire to podcast), so it'd be nice to actually have conversations (in person and not just answering back in the car by myself...)!

And by September, if I manage to make the show sustainable, I should have put out about 7-9 shows... that should give me enough street cred, shouldn't it?