Top Ten Things A Witch Learns Over Time

Hey guys –

No worries. I may have mentioned that my bicycling trip from Buffalo to Albany is taking place soon (As in, I leave tomorrow) but there shouldn’t be a lack of posting. I’m going to set my friend up to post on my behalf pre-written things to keep you all entertained while I work my butt off over 400 miles of New York. I believe it is going to be a top ten list, as I will be gone starting tomorrow, the fifth, and won’t return until July 13th. With that in mind, here is the first of my completely arbitrary, just now composed list of the Top Ten Things A Witch Learns Over Time.

Number 10: Cleansing is not the “Cure All”

I know that we’ve all had our days where everything has just gone wrong. Where no matter what you do, even the simple acts of grounding and centering yourself seem forced, if you can do them at all. The people in your life are grouchy, you can’t seem to get yourself out of a hole you’ve dug, and all you want to do is start over.

I know what ails you: Life. And let me tell you, from at least my experience, cleansing is not a cure all. What I’ve found, at least, is that the actual act of cleansing is a great idea – as long as the space is entirely your own. But when you cleanse something else – say, a shared dorm room – you may find that things only get worse.

Just a theory of mine, and it may not be shared by others, but I think that when you cleanse something that is not yours, you put your footprint on it. And with that footprint comes your sudden ability to heft the karma of that particular space onto your own shoulders. And suddenly, you’re feeling the urge to drink if your roommate is an alcoholic, or the urge to bitch if your shared office space is used to voice complaints in.

Sometimes, the best you can do is ride the waves. We, as witches, are supposed to be masters of our own reality, able to pick and choose where we want to walk. But, it’s a work in progress. Perhaps a cleansing followed by physical steps taken to remove the ill – a talk with your roommate or coworker – may better serve to fix the problem. After all, if all we hand to do was sprinkle some salt and water, and cense some incense around to fix all of our problems, let’s face it: Life would be no fun.

Number One of the Top Ten Things A Witch Learns Over Time « Pagan Pages.

Number Two of the Top Ten Things A Witch Learns Over Time « Pagan Pages.

Number Three of the Top Ten Things A Witch Learns Over Time « Pagan Pages.

Number Four of the Top Ten Things A Witch Learns Over Time « Pagan Pages.

Number Five of the Top Ten Things A Witch Learns Over Time « Pagan Pages.

Number Six of the Top Ten Things A Witch Learns Over Time « Pagan Pages.

Number Seven of the Top Ten Things A Witch Learns Over Time « Pagan Pages.

Number Eight of the Top Ten Things A Witch Learns Over Time « Pagan Pages.

Number Nine of the Top Ten Things A Witch Learns Over Time « Pagan Pages.

Top Ten Things A Witch Learns Over Time « Pagan Pages.

Extinction, Conservation, and Individual Accountability

I keep being presented with the concept of societal and earthly death.  Finding myself in a class that is intending to work out the problem of invasive species in Florida, it seems the entirety of my reading this week has been focused on the beginning of the end of the world.

Apocalyptic thoughts are not uncommon across societies, in changing times and in changing places.  We often – and it can be documented, open any history book – think that we are the pinnacle, the end to civilization and life, itself.  We believe that we are so very important, that we – the race – can extinguish all semblances of life on earth.  Look at 1800s Jehovah’s Witnesses, convinced that the world was ending.  Even the Mayans predicted the end of the world for December 21, 2012.

We are not that important. At least, to extinguish all life.  We may wipe out a good portion of it.  But when we’re gone, the microscopic organisms, certain macroscopic organisms – plants, fungi, some animals – they’ll be happy we’re gone, and they won’t give a shit.

That is not to say conservation is unimportant.  Indeed, conservation may be, in the end, what keeps a little bit of our sanity on hand.  But, I somehow don’t think I’ll be alive for the worst, if things are going to continue to happen as they are.  Nor will you.

What can we do?  What should we do, as Pagans?  In my tradition, we consider ourselves those individuals which will be the last to ‘go home’ – those who will lead the way for every other being before finding the way, ourselves.  Yet, we are also watchers – not to interfere too deeply with the social karma or the karma of others unless directly asked.  We are the priests – the mothers and the fathers – those who watch their children fall, then clean up their scrapes and cuts and send them on their way.

I think I’ve found my answer.  Individual accountability.

It’s simple.

Stop giving your yearly donations to the salvation army.  Go feed the homeless.

Stop going to protests for abused women.  Volunteer at their shelters.

Plant a tree.

Make a difference.  A real, live difference, not a monetary or “internet petition” difference.  Don’t donate money to “clean the streets” campaigns – do it yourself!

Maybe, that way, at least, when we ‘go home’…you can stand before the gods, and be proud of the life you have lived, the steps you have taken, even where you’ve stumbled.

Blessed Be!

Concepts of Home

First off, I apologize for leaving the last post at the top for so long.  I got involved in life, and its been putting me through a grinder as of late.  The stress is hitting me a tiny bit – only this morning, mind you – as I face a meeting with my professor that will either make or break our relationship.  No worries 🙂

So, this morning is the first time I’ve felt homesick, ish, the entire time I’ve been here in sunny Florida.  I think part of it is the weather – it has to be in the fifties here, and its reminding me of the spring at home.  Late spring, but spring.  And then I get to thinking.  Summer is the only time – that height of summer – where we don’t say goodbye.  In the spring there is high school or college graduation, in the autumn there is the start of the school year or college…Christmas is all about seeing those people you see once a year (my family celebrates Christmas culturally, not religiously) – and Easter is much the same.  So, the weather I’ve been feeling up until this point – summer – has not caused me to reflect at all on being away from home.

The other part of it is my dreams.  I had one of those dreams where you wake up and think you’re somewhere else – I thought I was home.  Then I realized I wasn’t.

But what is home, exactly?  This is a question which has plagued me most of my life.  I had a wonderful childhood, wonderful school, wonderful everything.  I’ve had a stable family and home all of my life.  But as a college student, I struggle with the concept of home.  When I am at college, I consider the place where my parents live “home” – but I refer to college as “home” when I am at the place where my parents live.  I feel most at peace and at home in the midst of a ritual or a moment of awareness where I realize that the Gods, the Ancestors – they’re all near.

If you don’t have a religion or a path that makes you feel at home – you should find one.  The feeling of being there – at peace – nirvana – is something most unconsciously strive for, for most of their lives.

I am a bit homesick, yes.  Homesick for my dogs and my cats, perhaps my parents (but I do talk to them) – for the northern woods and the northern snow, and the sights and the wind and the water.  But, it too shall pass 😉