witch name, witches, witch, witchcraft, magick, magic, titles

Guest Post: Self Determined Titles by Michael DeCamp

~~~Bloggers Note: Michael is a guest blogger here, chosen due to the number of years I have been blessed to know him and also for the verified potency of the “energy bombs” he sends to me. These bombs are sent both upon request, and occasionally, they are sneakily dropped on me simply because he feels my drain from half a continent away.

Michael is responsible for many interesting and helpful posts in the group I visit. The entire group has had many wonderful discussions thanks to his posts. He poses questions for thought, offers answers and insights on others’ questions. He shares knowledge gleaned from real life experiences. He is not a part of Sacred Hands Coven and I have never been graced to meet him IRL, but have been blessed to have him as a personal friend for a few years now online. Thanks for permission to post, Michael!~~~

 

As we go through this life, we come across words that hold meanings for us as individuals; meanings that differ from person to person.

Before my awakening, to me, magic was what I saw on TV and in movies. Merlin was a wizard of myth and legend, and magicians were tricksters. Later, I was made aware of Native American titles: Medicine (Wo)Men, Shamans, and Dream Warriors, each with special gifts.

After my awakening into the start of my path, I chose the title of healer. It was the first ability I worked on and studied. However, as I grew into my other abilities, the title I chose changed. I thought of myself as a magus, a sorcerer, enchanter, and even an adept.

The more I learned to do, the more my ‘identity’ changed, as my identity changed, so did my title. Again, these titles were self-defined. Determined as I saw how they fit me as a person.

Finally, eleven years after my first awakening to the spirit/occult/divine path, I came to my final title. My personal identifier. I had just stumbled upon my current path; a path of balance. It was during this reaffirmation of my beliefs and values that my personal title identifier changed to what it remains today. I am an Energy Weaver.

My gifts allow me to tap into multiple energy threads. I see different energies as different and distinct colors. I follow their courses through everything perceived. It is a very uncommon ability, apparently. I have discovered only a handful of individuals who relate to energies, and their uses, in the same manner.

This is who I am. This is my personal title.

I hope that others, through personal introspection and exploration, can find who they are. Perhaps you don’t need a title. Perhaps you identify with a title already. Whichever the case, as long as you are comfortable with whom you are within the mindset of magic and the occult; this is what matters most, in my opinion.

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Kirt's forum post

From the Forums: Magic: Not for Use by Special Little Snowflakes. by Kirt A White

~~~Bloggers Note: Yet again, Kirt highlights a problem we all too often seen in the forums and even more sadly, in real life practice. The problem is one of cutesy fantasies or Hollywood misconceptions intersecting with real magickal practices in ways that can prove dangerous to snowflake practitioners and fluffy bunnies.

 For some reason a great many of the interesting and helpful posts in the groups I visit seem to come from the same handful of people, one of whom is Kirt. He offers real life experience and common sense knowledge in easy to understand language to further the knowledge of newbies and others. He is not a part of Sacred Hands Coven and I have never been graced to meet him IRL, but from what I have read of his posts, he strikes me as one of those guys you want to hang out with in a coffee shop all night talking over life, the universe and everything! Thanks for permission to post, Kirt!~~~ ***Only a handful of slight corrections, to spelling, or punctuation for when the spirit and passion overtook his typing. All the intelligence and spirit is his own.

 Long rant from dealing with stupid people. If you need a “trigger” warning, pull up your big boy panties and grow the fuck up. There’s your warning.

Apparently, I have to add “fluffy bunny trigger warning” because some people find it impossible to see the word trigger without thinking PTSD, [Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder] then, suddenly assume they know what the post is about.

I’m sorry to tell you this little fluffy bunny but you are a human being. We all want to be special, we all want to be more than we are, and we all hope that the magic in us somehow sets us apart from everyone else. The reality is a few steps to the side of that, sadly.

Magic is a force of creation and destruction, it permeates through everything, and nearly everyone uses it, or can learn to use it, to some extent. Being able to use magic does not automatically make you an Archon of the divine. In this life, in the here and now, you are a human being, whatever you may have been in the past is just that, in the past. While you are ultimately the culmination of your experiences, each new life is a new beginning, a fresh start to learn new things. All the respect, admiration, and abilities from the past still need to be earned. The path to your gifts may not be as hard but it must still be walked. When a god or goddess calls you their son or daughter, realize that that is an affectation, like priest or priestess, and not a sign of actual familial connection. You are physical they are not. Even if said deity influenced your parents to create you, you are still the product of your human parents and not half god or goddess. A god cannot reincarnate backward into flesh that is not how it works and a deity is too evolved, it would need to break shards of itself apart into new souls, that still doesn’t make those new souls… that deity. Connected to it, sure, but no longer a part of the whole.

While I’m on the subject of deity, quit whitewashing them to try to make them more PC [politically correct] and user friendly. Some of them, simply are not friendly, nor should they ever be. Even the most benign face of the Morrigan will not hesitate to gut you like a trout if you piss her off, she is the ultimate battle bitch no matter which face she shows, sweet and cuddly mother she will never be, nor should she be. The darker gods are dark for a reason and need to stay that way. We need that energy; it would be like trying to turn Cernunnos into a kind father figure. True, he may have his moments of that, but at his core he is a god of primal maleness. Sex, ego, and power are his weapons of choice and he is good at them. Not every deity is a harmonious balance of masculine and feminine. Trying to make magic more PC is just completely ridiculous and downright disrespectful to the beings we pay homage to.

There is too much ignorance going around. People calling on gods with no idea who they are calling or how to properly summon, calling gods of different pantheons without checking to see if they can get along with each other first. Younglings constantly wanting to be spoon-fed the answers without using their brains to look shit up. Magic always has a cost, it may not seem like it sometimes but there will always be a price to pay, and part of that price is that you put some honest effort into your spell work. Magic won’t work for you if you just can’t be bothered to put any energy onto it.

Clarifying comments and original text found: https://www.facebook.com/groups/MPWNF/permalink/10155327282571466/

The Issue of Drug Use in Paganism – Charles Wilson, Guest Blogger

 

~~~Bloggers Note: Charles is a Senior Administrator at Magicians Paganism Witches Necromancers Friendship Group on Facebook. He is a frequent contributor to group discussions, both in starting discussions and adding valuable insight to the group discussions other’s start. He is very knowledgeable, plain spoken in a way that teaches others without offending or intimidating.

Charles is not affiliated with SacredHandsCoven and I have never been blessed to meet him IRL, but from what I have read of his posts he strikes me as one of those people you want to hang out with in a quiet corner of a local pub for hours on end as you trade ideas, concepts, and learn all you can from him. Thanks for permission to post, Charles!~~~

This is certainly an uncomfortable topic to write about, next to sexuality, but alas there are misunderstandings with those outside of the community so it is worth writing about. To begin, we have to define what a drug is. According to the Oxford Dictionary, a drug is “A medicine or other substance which has a physiological effect when ingested or otherwise introduced into the body.” This broad definition would include everything from conventional medicine (such as pills), common chemicals found in beverages (such as caffeine or Alcohol), and plants, both poisonous and medicinal. However, most are focused on either the age restrictive or the illegal drugs so I will as well with this discussions.

Now, do pagans use drugs? Some do, and others choose not to. Those who follow pagan belief systems are just like any other group of people in the sense that no absolute statement will work as there is always an exception. Those who choose not to do so either out of personal preference (based or not on past experiences), issues with their health or because it could put their employment to risk (coming from a path that emphasizes family, community, and self reliance, I can understand not wanting to risk employment). It is pretty much the same reasons as anyone else would choose not to.

Before I get into why others choose to, let me clarify what kind of drugs I am talking about. Hard drugs that are not prescribed by the doctor or found in food are very rarely mentioned in the use for ritual (so that knocks out heroin, cocaine, morphine, meth, crack, and various other street drugs). The ones usually mentioned are Alcohol, Nicotine, Marijuana, Peyote, Shrooms, Ayahuasca, and various plants that promotes relaxation. There are three main reasons I have found to why those in the pagan community choose to use drugs. The first reason is pain management (this is especially the cause with pot), which makes sense as medicine has taken many forms throughout the years. Another reason is to help an individual interact with their gods and other spirits through what is known as journeys or “crossing the hedge” sessions for the sake of themselves or another. This is nothing new, as many individuals in cultures throughout the world did the same for their communities in history (usually after years of training of course). The final reason,reason why some in the pagan community may choose to use the drugs I mentioned is simple: pure pleasure, just like anyone who enjoys a beer or wine after a long day at work.

Which brings us to a question that I am sure both my family and others wonder: Do I personally use “drugs”? Yes and no. I am a smoker and I do drink in moderation prior to ritual to aid in the relaxation process. I have had my college experience, which I will not go into details with, that have reinforced my moderation view on things. Now if I were to become seriously injured, I would certainly choose pot to manage the pain over opioids because I have an addictive personality and rather not go down that rabbit hole. It’s one of those plants that makes no sense to keep illegal in my eyes and helps many people with pain management. Over the years, I have became pretty open with the topic of drugs and their uses, but I do not jump into it as quickly as some may think due to my focus on my personally responsibilities. However, I do not judge anyone who do use them.

To wrap this whole thing up, absolute statements never work. People will constantly prove that there are exceptions to every rule and many reasons for their behavior. Not all pagans choose to use drugs, just like with any other faith. It is the same with every other stereotype, and the only way to fight those stereotypes is through education. And it might as well come from someone within the group. Thank you all for reading