“After All”, by Dar Williams

Dar Williams is one of my favorite artists, starting  back when I first saw her perform my freshman year of college. She’s witty and vulnerable; a sensitive soul guided by beauty and hounded by depression. When I’m empty, I fight the same fight; but when I take care of myself, I remember that neither emotion nor beauty are my adversary; there doesn’t need to be a fight.

Go ahead push your luck
Find out how much love the world can hold
Once upon a time I had control and reined my soul in tight

Well the whole truth
Is like the story of a wave unfurled
But I held the evil of the world
So I stopped the tide
Froze it up from inside

Gods-matchmaking, July 2015

Busy, busy, busy.

My apologies to all for not posting much recently. I blame this on 1) starting a new relationship (NRE, yay!); 2) my trip back to CA; and 3) starting a Patheos bi-weekly column (pretty much at the last minute). These are all good things–I can’t complain–but together they have commandeered all of the resources I have available. So, my #90DaysofOdin has slacked off quite a bit (though I still find myself talking about Him and defending Him pretty regularly, so I will count those days). And my other minor plans for world domination have also slacked off because, well, love. Love, people. Got to have your priorities straight.

Continue reading

Cara’s Rant About Intolerance, July 2015

I’ve had several rants percolating around in my head, sparked by the asshattru idiocy against the Icelandic Asatruar last week. I always have a wide variety of rants in my head, most of which don’t make it to the computer because really, who wants to write rants all day? Not I. But this Icelanders-receiving-hate-mail thing just pushed every single one of my buttons. This lovely Heathen breaks it down quite well with words and a tone (and even the eyebrows!) that pretty much exactly match my own:

So in addition to the obvious, what this got me thinking was about how intolerant groups of any ilk successfully reposition an argument to make it about something it is not. For example– Continue reading

“What are the Gods up to?” by John Beckett

From his blog on Patheos today:

“What are the Gods up to?  I don’t know.  But I do know They are our oldest, strongest, and wisest  allies.  I know that honoring Them and supporting Their values and virtues is a meaningful and helpful way to live.  I know that through Them I am part of something bigger and more important than myself.”

Which to me pretty much sums up why any of us do anything with and for our Gods. Heilsa!

Patheos Column–“Happily Heathen”

Who’s got a biweekly column at Patheos? THIS GIRL!

I’m to be on the Agora site on the 2nd and 4th Fridays of the month. First article will go up this coming Friday. So much to say! Time to scour the blog for good posts to dust off and submit. Anybody have any posts or topics they’d like to see me cover first?

Boundaries

Today in River Devora’s Polytheism class we were discussing communities: what types of spiritual or religious based groups there are; how they are structured; problems we’ve seen in our various polytheist communities; and groups and practices that worked really well. In the process, we discussed how hard it is for many pagan groups to practice defending boundaries: deciding who should be in a group, and when/how to kick somebody out of the group/community if that person was destroying the community. And it brought to mind the incident I had at the Facets of Freya ritual at PCon this year.

The Facets ritual was a communal project by Freyja’s Aett, a group I formed for this purpose. It an intense, high-energy, high-woo ritual that had five of us Freyaswomen trancing Her various facets simultaneously and doing a version of seidh for all of the participants. We had all worked on it for months, and I was very proud to be able to give this offering of love to and on behalf of my goddess.

And so it happened that on the night of the ritual, 11pm Sunday evening, near the end of the line for our ritual was Bathrobe Man. (If you’ve been to PCON, you may have seen him–he wears a short bathrobe–purple satin, iirc–with nothing under it, and wears it around Con all weekend. Every year.) I had remembered seeing him at the Dionysus ritual earlier that evening, which was designed to be a party as well as a devotional. And while our ritual was also designed to be powerful and ecstatic, it was not a free-flowing kind of party type of ritual where an enterprising guy might be able to “accidentally” loose his bathrobe belt and go leer at younger women. (Yeah. He had that energy.)

In any event, one of the Con staff assigned to our ritual went in an grabbed me when she saw him in line and asked me what I wanted to do. Technically, he shouldn’t have been allowed into any Con events as he wasn’t really dressed–but this is a large Pagan convention and, as we discussed in class, Pagans (many of whom have ourselves been the victims of discrimination and hated) generally have a hard time themselves excluding others from their events. The staff member was trying to help me avoid having to lay down a boundary and deal with the resultant confrontation right before my ritual, but Freya is nothing if not the Goddess of boundaries, so that was not going to happen. So I went over to him myself, pulled him out of the line, and told him that he wasn’t properly dressed for this ritual. His response?

“I can’t wear this, even this late at night? Really?”

And that pretty much did it. Some creepy dude with bad boundaries is not going to come into my ritual and disrespect my goddess and Her priestesses and the people who were there to seek some healing and a connection with Her. NOT ON MY WATCH.

So, despite the fact that I was set to channel Freya’s “Generous Giver/Self-Love” facet five minutes later, I gently but firmly kicked a guy out of our ritual.

And I felt bad about it for about five minutes. But then I let it go.