“Strong Roots/Wide Branches” online class for Polytheists: Spiritual hygiene, spiritual protection, and setting space

My friend River’s next Polytheist Basics class is this coming Sunday. All are welcome to join. The class is held simultaneously online and in person and lasts for three hours with one short break. River asks for a minimum $10 donation to help pay for costs (though for the first class you may be able to work out a reduced rate or a trade; you will need to contact her directly).The next class’s description is below:

Our next class is a continuation of our intro to “woo” from a polytheist perspective, and specifically where woo fits into polytheism, where it doesn’t, how it’s distinct, and an intro to some basic skills and concepts that may be useful in polytheist practice. In this class, we’ll begin to cover subjects such as spiritual hygiene, spiritual protection, and setting space ritually for devotional work.

“Woo” is a silly but useful term that vaguely, nonspecifically, and broadly includes diverse skills, practices and experiences that may include magical techniques, direct contact with gods or spirits, divination, psychic phenomena, mediumship, trance possession, ecstatic practices, mystical experiences, etc. We will not necessarily cover all of this in depth, but will at least begin the conversation. Do keep in mind, while there is some crossover between polytheism, magic (with and without the extra K), witchcraft, and other disciplines, polytheism is not in and of itself a “magical practice”, it is a religious one. Also, it is really important to stress here that one does not need to engage in “woo” practices, be skilled in any of them, or even be interested in participation in such things in order to be a devout, solid, and serious polytheist. Part of why we will be doing a deep dive into this is partly because many of us engage in these practices in some connection with our polytheism, and we should know how to engage safely. And part of why we’ll be exploring this is precisely because it is important that we differentiate what is what – so we know where religion ends and magic begins (and where the overlap may live).

The logistics and details are behind the cut. I’ve known River for almost ten years, and have worked with her in ritual and class and trance sessions many times. I trust and respect her as a leader and educator within the polytheist movement and the Heathen community, as well as being a good friend. Her classes are a great safe place to start learning and discussing any topic on polytheism. It is also a great place to hear what other polytheists in a wide variety of traditions are doing in their day to-day practices. I will be at this class virtually this time, though I hope to be able to make it in person to one of her classes, hosted in the South Bay.


(From River’s FB page)

Classes are $10-25 sliding scale. When you pay for the class, you will receive her address if you are coming in person. If you are attending online, PLEASE be sure to tell her what is the best way to send her a URL (either give her your email address or tell her to PM you on Facebook). The way Zoom works is that as soon as she starts the class (which she will at 1:30 to give folks a chance to log in), she will need to send you a link for you to use to log into the class.

To pay for the class: you can send a single payment to bearfairie@gmail.com, or you can sign up for the entire program and have the cost of the class automatically deducted monthly by signing up at https://www.patreon.com/rootsandbranches If you choose to sign up for the monthly automatic deduction, you can easily cancel at any time. If you have already signed up over patreon, you don’t need to sign up a second time, but please do let her know if you are planning on attending.

If you would rather pay in cash, this option is only available if you are attending in person. Please contact her privately. Some limited worktrade is available on a first-come, first-serve basis, but only for in-person classes. Please contact her privately if you have questions or concerns.

6 thoughts on ““Strong Roots/Wide Branches” online class for Polytheists: Spiritual hygiene, spiritual protection, and setting space

  1. This sounds really interesting, but I have no clue how Zoom works, plus I’m not sure my internet speed would allow much… I’d also have to check my bank account… *blows cheeks up in frustration*
    But this does look really interesting. Even though I’ve been a polytheist for over six years, I’ve spent most of that in middle and high school. Lack of funds or connections meant a lot of this stuff has never been open to me, plus a lot of people who know my experience think I know all the basics. This is something I need to think on and look into the mechanics for.

    • I think we definitely have a need for this kind of class; a lot of people are in or have been in a similar situation to what you describe. Zoom was new to all of us as well, a few months ago 🙂 But it’s free, and similar to Skype. You could always reach out to her directly to see if she could work with your financial situation. Also, it’s an ongoing class. It’s planned at a year and a half, and we’re on the fourth class now. You could always drop in whenever a topic comes up that interests you.

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