Wednesday, December 28, 2011

pagan art journaling {week 48}

This week's prompt: evolution of your ideas about your faith/path

I'll admit it, I was a fluffy bunny. But admitting it is part of the solution, right? And oh, how things have changed since I started out on this path. Once upon a time it was all about the spirits of nature, now things are a lot more complex for me.

Studying the Qabala and reading Crowley, 2 things I'd previously been very resistant to, have really changed my perspective of traditional Wicca, paganism in general, and specific re-constructionist pagan paths. While I see paganism as a catch all term, I no longer see all of these paths being necessarily similar (though I do feel a lot of the time the term paganism is used as a catch all term for very loose, free forms of eclectic Wicca--and I don't necessarily see either the loose, free form, eclectic Wicca, or the use of the catch all term Paganism as being bad things).

I used to be quite scared of things like the Goetia, Enochian, and Golden Dawn magic. Now I have a healthy  respect for the first two and am much more comfortable with much of the Golden Dawn framework. I go back to old books and I'm awed by the things that I missed before, that made reference to things that I just ignored and didn't catch. And it amazes me now how much is in some of the books out there. They often point the way if you're willing to do the work and walk through the symbols and keys left for you. So for me, as this year ends and I look back over my path, I realize just how far I've come and yet how so much of what I initially held to be true and dear to me have only become more solidified through time and experience.I just needed (and still need) to learn to trust my experiences and internal knowledge more.

What about you? How has your sense of your spiritual path changed over time? And if you make New Year's resolutions, what is the one thing that you want to work on in terms of your spiritual life in the upcoming year?

Over the past year, I've really had to learn trust more and it's been a challenging lesson. I know I haven't talked about it much here, but trust is a big issue for me when growing a spiritual community. I often have a knee jerk, OMG flakey reaction to things that make me uncomfortable or tend to shut down when people expect me to open up and be vulnerable. Who knew, right?

So I think that going into the next year trust will continue to be a big lesson for me on my path, and I'm actually thankful to have built a community that accepts this about me and works around my reactions to help me find my way towards open heartedness. I wish for all of you out there, on similar albeit different journeys, that you find the same in your life in 2012.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart for joining me along the way, as I work my way through my own musings through art, journaling, and meditations. May 2012 be bright and blessed for all of us!


Wednesday, December 21, 2011

pagan art journaling {week 47}

This week's prompt: Symbols

What do various symbols within your path mean to you?

As we move towards Yule, I find myself thinking about myths and stories, and the symbols that emerge from them. Joseph Campbell wrote about the hero of a thousand faces, he who descends into the darkness to emerge, reborn, bringing light and hope back into the world. I find this particular story and the symbolism of the hero, to be particularly apt at this time of year.

What does the symbol of the sun/son at Yule mean to you? What do other symbols (literal and metaphorical) within the tradition you follow, mean to you? Is this time of year literally about the rebirth of the God, or is it more than that? Often we get tied up in the idea of the Mother, Son, Father archetypes and fail to look beyond their literal meanings to the deeper truths they represent.

So this year, as you celebrate the wheel turning, and the sun's rebirth, I wish you all the love and blessings of the Goddess and God, and hope that the light and hope of their journey fills you and yours with joy.

Blessed Yule!


Thursday, December 15, 2011

this week I am: dec 5-11th

I'm posting this a little later in the week, but hey, better late than never!!!

The weather outside has been gloomy and warmer than expected for this time of year. The semester has finally come to an end and I think I just need a bit of time to breath and refocus now that the chaos has halted.

Of course, I say this with Christmas around the corner... oh the ironies of it all!

I wanted to start a new project with a giveaway but had to accept that honestly, it just wasn't going to happen, no matter how much I wanted it to be. So next year...

Maybe I'll write and photograph things during my holiday break. Wouldn't that be amazingly ahead of schedule? Crazy!

Working on a December Daily project and will share some photos soon. Trying to get gift giving sorted and have been on the phone a lot lately, playing catch up with family. Yay, I get to go home for a visit soon (Jan). Looking forward to spending some quality time with  Mom and my Grandma. Have I ever mentioned that I adore my Grandma? She's the bestest! So, holidays with the in-laws and birthday shenanigans in Jan with my favourite women (including my best girlfriend). That's what I've been up to lately. You know, plus all the meditating and spiritual stuff....

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

pagan art journaling {week 46}

This week's prompt: family

As the holiday season starts to overtake our lives, and we contemplate the rebirth of the light, I find myself wondering a lot about family and spirituality. How many of us are "out" with our families? How many of us celebrate 2 holidays at this time of year, 2 traditions? How many of us try to merge the 2 together? And if so, do we do it successfully? 

Don't get me wrong, I think that Yule and Christmas overlap well, but it's in the little details that sometimes we find ourselves most challenged. Like, if you have children, what do you do with Santa Claus? Or most Christmas songs?

I don't necessarily think these things need to become huge issues, but as I contemplate having a child, my husband and I spend a fair amount of conversation time discussing (or sometimes avoiding, I'll be honest) these types of questions because we are an interfaith family, which makes finding an answer to many of these question all the more challenging.

How do you share your spirituality with your children? Your family? How do you navigate family events while staying true to your own ideals?


Friday, December 9, 2011

disappearing comments

Ok, so I wanted to upgrade my comment section in order to be able to respond directly to each comment and in so doing, removed all my comments from the viewable site. FRAK! But I have them all still, viewable to me. I will respond to recent comments and I'm sorry for all the lost public comments. Hopefully the new system will work well in the future!


Wednesday, December 7, 2011

pagan art journaling {week 45}

This week's prompt: tradition

Are you part of a tradition? Do you think that being in a tradition is important?

When I first started exploring this spiritual path, it seemed like all I heard about was traditional Wicca. Of course, I know that many of you reading this blog are not Wiccan like me, but bear with me here...

I spent hours searching on the web, looking for links into traditional groups and information about the various branches of Wicca, almost desperate to find a path within a path that felt like the right fit. Eventually I became discouraged and gave up, moving towards eclectic paganism because it felt like there weren't really any other choices.

But then I started asking myself why I was so set on tradition anyways? Was it really that important? Especially given that I have always been a bit of an odd bird, ever resistant towards social convention. So why was I kowtowing to social, albeit fringe social, convention?

I knew then, as I know now, my quest for tradition wasn't because tradition was the all important, end all, be all for me, but rather, I was looking for informed, experienced teachers. And that, I believe, can be found in and out of tradition. And tradition itself is no guarantee of quality.

Of course, ironically, just when I gave up my quest for tradition, I found myself in a group full of lineage and tradition, albeit not in a conventional sense. Of course, me being contrary by nature, it comes as no surprise that this plays into how my path is unfolding. The Horned God does have a sense of humour and has always liked to laugh at my foibles!

But what about you? Do you think tradition and lineage is important? Have you had negative/positive experiences in a tradition?

And, just cause I like to stir the cauldron a bit, do you think that we can self-initiate?

Monday, December 5, 2011

this week I am {nov 28-dec4}

This past week was an interesting one, full of highs and lows.

I've been reading Signe Pike's Faery Tale, and being someone who has always been a bit fascinated with fairies, I find the book intriguing. Two fairy tattoos and Faye as a name... I wonder what gives me away!?! But, I'm not finished yet, so I'll wait before giving my full opinion on the text.

One of the questions I find myself asking though, in relation to this book, is whether or not it is safe to be searching out the fairies.

I'm of two minds on this topic. On one hand, they're there whether we can see them or not, so does it change much if we're actually aware of their presence? The answer of course, is yes. History has shown that you don't fuck with the fairies. Cause the fairies, they don't play nice, even when they like you they don't play nice.

I think there's an honest reaction out there towards the tendency to tell us not to dabble in areas where we are not ready to go, but then again, when do we know if we're ready? Is Signe, on her journey, being naive because she's seeking out something that we shouldn't mess with? Or proactive in going where angels fear to tread and taking charge of her own destiny? So often, experienced witches tell newbies to stay away from advanced magic for good reason but this can often end up feeling so restrictive, like a parent constantly monitoring over us. If someone feels called to the fairies, is it wrong to open that door, even if you don't know much about magic or protection, or .... fill in the blank with whatever thought popped into your head!

We all have stories about being told not to dabble, or dabbling and regretting it. What do you think, should we seek out the fairy or leave them alone?


Friday, December 2, 2011

art, sustainability, paying for web content

Ok, so today's post requires a bit of research! (or link love should you prefer to put a positive spin on it... you know, in case research doesn't float your boat like it does mine.. I'm a geek, I know this).

So. Here goes. Start with this article on selling vs giving away crafted creations. And then follow it with this video:


I'm trying to be neutral here, so I'm going to ask you what your thoughts are on such a system (taking into account that while they're different topics in some ways, at the core, they are the same).

I'm very curious to see what fellow internet people, crafters, and such think of such a plan. Do you think that it would help make the culture of free more sustainable? Does it have a place in the pagan-o-sphere?

This inquiring mind would love to know what you think!