Bragging Round

News: Troth publication and upcoming classes

My article, “Reciprocity and Compassion in Ancestor Work,” was published in the Fall 2018 issue (#117) of The Troth’s magazine, Idunna: A Journal of Northern Tradition.

In this personal narrative, I discuss some of the challenges and learning experiences that have come with ancestral spirit work. Here’s an excerpt:

I started intuitively, as many do. Dreaming of my beloved paternal Grandma, always with a matter-of-fact acknowledgment: “But Grandma… you died.”

“I know,” she’d say, “but I want to visit you.”

If you’re not a member of the Troth, contact troth-questions@thetroth.org directly to inquire about purchasing a PDF ($3) or hard copy ($6) of the issue. Back issues of the magazine are also available after a year on their Lulu website.

In other news, signups are open for three classes I’ll be teaching at Fantasia Crystals in January 2019. If you’re in the Phoenix, AZ area, please come check these out! Descriptions and signup instructions at the links.

January 5th (Saturday, 11 am to 12:30 pm, $15/person): Divine Queerness: LGBT+ Deities Around the World

January 12th (Saturday, 11 am to 12:30 pm, $15/person): Norse Loki 101

January 26th (Saturday, 11 am to 12:30 pm, $15/person): Lesser Known Deities in Heathenry and Norse Paganism

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Devotional, Social Issues, Theology

Hel, Death, and oppression: a discussion and a prayer

Worship of death-related deities can sometimes seem frightening or senseless to suffering outsiders. For every person who turns to the presence of Death for comfort in times of sorrow, danger, and difficulties (for instance, as discussed by devotees in this Santa Muerte documentary), there are others who are repulsed by everything to do with the end of life, for understandable reasons.

Particularly for those who see loved ones and community members cruelly and unnaturally taken from the world by acts of violence, the worship of an incarnation of Death might appear at face value disturbing or cruel.

Continue reading “Hel, Death, and oppression: a discussion and a prayer”

Social Issues, Theology

Dude, I Call Lokiphobia! Check Your Bully Pulpit.

I may or may not write my own piece on this later in the week, depending on how I’m feeling. But for now, here’s one thoughtful, much-needed rebuttal to an upsetting and bizarre article.

LadyOfTheLake

Yesterday I woke up perplexed and annoyed. Today I woke up pissed. Maybe it was that nightmare of the horse falling from out of the sky, missing one leg (who knows what this means?) and that part later where I had to flee with a frightened family to a place of numerous birds in cages and eerily pleasant people behind the counter, checking us in.

All I know is that I deeply resent the psuedo-Satanic Panic import of Karl Seigfried’s Wild Hunt opinion piece, “Loki in the White House.” Yesterday I didn’t even want to write his name, today I think it’s important to do so. Because I think his intentions are to further ostracize–and demonize–a group of religious people already existing in the margins of neopaganism: Lokeans and those who Hail Loki, among other deities.

Two days ago, I never knew this guy existed. But…

View original post 2,942 more words

DIY, Homesteading

DIY healthy, cheap, homemade shampoo and conditioner

As an urban homesteader, I’m always looking for ways to reduce my reliance on prepackaged household goods.

When I cave and buy cheap hair products out of necessity, the fragrances give me headaches and my hair (long, nearly to my waist) gets visibly less healthy and more tangled. But I’m also sick of spending money on expensive “all natural” shampoos and conditioners, which usually still come in plastic bottles with dubious additives.

I did some research and decided to make my own shampoo and conditioner using basic ingredients. There are a few different options, but here’s what worked for me:

Continue reading “DIY healthy, cheap, homemade shampoo and conditioner”

Pop Culture

A pagan and witch’s review of Suspiria (2018)

A few days ago, I got a chance to watch Suspiria (2018) at a local indie movie theater. I love the horror genre, particularly slow-build psychological and supernatural horror.

As you can imagine, I’m especially interested in paganism, witchcraft, and the occult as portrayed in horror, which is sometimes well done with obvious research and respect (A Dark Song is probably my favorite occult horror movie), and other times… yikes (too many examples to list).

This one has been sticking with me. Major spoilers ahead for my review.

Continue reading “A pagan and witch’s review of Suspiria (2018)”

Social Issues

Casual Islamophobia and anti-Semitism in paganism

I’ve been sitting on this post for a while, because it needs to be said well. But I’m going to just post it, because it needs to be said.

This is for well-intentioned pagan and/or Heathen readers who, in general, already care about others. Average, decent people. I want to ask us to be careful how our casual words and deeds may unintentionally contribute to the oppression of others, because I’ve seen this in our communities… a lot. Seemingly small incidents like this matter just as much as, if not more than, the more extreme examples of outright hatred.

Here’s one specific trend I’ve noticed: the conflation of the “Abrahamic religions” and the understandable but potentially harmful consequences of these statements.

Continue reading “Casual Islamophobia and anti-Semitism in paganism”

Link Roundup

Open tabs roundup for November 2018

I’ve been swamped this week. In lieu of an actual article, here’s a roundup of some of the pages I’ve left open on my phone to read on public transit and during other downtime.

(My current 36 open tabs are a moderate amount for me. Why yes, I do in fact have ADHD.)

I haven’t finished most of these yet, and therefore can’t vouch for the content, but hopefully they’ll give you something interesting to read until I can catch up and write something of my own. Think of it as a themed link grab bag.

Heathenry:

Saxon & Norse Historical Funeral Rites

Descent from the Giants: the sons of Fornjotr

Loptson’s “Eight Days of Loki” Ritual

Spirituality and paganism:

Five Ways to Honor Your Ancestors

Tobaccomancy Tobacomancia

Spiritual Bypassing: Avoidance in Holy Drag

The Interior Castle by St. Teresa of Avila (this is a Catholic book I suspect may be relevant to godspouses, but we’ll see)

Chaos magic on Wikipedia

Crafts and homesteading:

Patterns of folk embroidery from Poland

A Basic Sweater You Can Knit

Have fun reading, and see you next week!