PantheaCon 2016

Here’s my PantheaCon schedule this year:

Things I am in (note the “all late night, all trancey” theme, for the most part)

  • Friday 11PM “All Acts of Love and Pleasure”, Cedar/Pine
  • Saturday 11am “Njord Blot”, Heathen Hospitality Suite, 2nd floor 
  • Saturday 11pm “Facets of Freya”, San Jose/Santa Clara
  • Sunday 9pm: “Matronae Oracular Devotional”, Oak

The All Acts of Love and Pleasure ritual, run by Yeshe Rabbit Matthews’ CAYA group, is meant as a substitute for the usual Friday night Pomba Gira ritual. The structure is “person presents her or his goddess, followed by a danceable song”. There’s about 7 or 8 of us presenting various love and sex deities (Ishtar, Oshun, Venus, etc.). I’m presenting Freya, and, knowing Her, I will most likely be carrying Her throughout the ritual. I didn’t realize at the time that I was asked that this was supposed to be the replacement for Pomba, else I might have been a bit more hesitant to accept a part. Still, when I asked Freya about it, She was pleased. “I shall come down glowing and golden!” She said–or something to that effect, anyway. So the facet of Freya which will show up here will probably be along the lines of Brisingamen Freya or Self-Love Freya.

The Njord Blot is a last-minute addition to the Heathen Hospitality Hall schedule, as He has been poking at me quite strongly recently and I thought He should have a blot. It’ll be informal and, depending on how many people show up, short.

The Facets of Freya ritual is our follow-up to last year’s Facets ritual, which I have saved on the blog (tagline facets of freya). It will follow essentially the same format as the one from last year, but the facets which will be presented are different this year. This year’s facets will draw from the darker sides of Freya–the seidhkona (“witch”); the blot gythia (“leader of the sacrifices”); the survivor (Gullveig, and Freya post-Ragnarok); Mardoll (“She who weeps for Her lover”); and the ever-popular Chooser of the Slain (valkyrie Freya!). Our tagline is, as ever: “Five Freyas, no waiting”.

The last one I’m officially in this year is River Devora and Rynn Fox’s Matronae Oracular Devotional. I’m only on the warding staff, so I’m not as familiar with how this will be set up this year. However, I was on River’s test crew when she was originally hammering out this bit of ritual tech, so I have some idea what to expect. As a side note, I think “the Matronae” as such are making a comeback, as it seems like many European goddesses (Germanic and Celtic ones, in particular) may have gone through a phase in which they were worshipped as part of the Matronae (or maybe an earlier version of the goddesses were part of the Matronae) and so, in a sense, parts of the Matronae have been worshipped more and more frequently over the last 30 years or so. Perhaps the “collective” Matronae entity is finally waking up now. It’s fun stuff to experience/ponder, though I’m happy I’m not trancing in this ritual!)

Things I would like to attend (but let’s be honest, I usually end up wherever the Gods throw me):
Too numerous to list, honestly. Ideally (in no particular order): anything about Heathenry; anything about the Greeks; anything about trance; anything about folklore; anything about horned gods; anything about love goddesses; anything by Shauna Aura KnightJohn Beckett, Hrafnar (Diana Paxon’s kindred), the Vanic Conspiracy, Pandemos, or ADF; and anything else put on by anybody I know. (If the event is before 11AM, it’s unlikely I’ll make it; see the aforementioned all late-night trance rituals this year.) Every year, I spend so much time plotting out all of the rituals and workshops I’d like to attend, but I rarely end up at a quarter of them. I try to let it go and not stress about it. C’est la vie.

Who is Queen here, anyway?

Also known as, everything looks better the day after.

Ever have that experience where the Gods put you in situations just to get a reaction out of you? (Granted, the reaction they are going for may be “growth”, but still. Poke the bear until they finally do what you want them to.)

Since posting about the “irreconcilable differences” between Freya, Loki, myself, and my guy, I’ve gotten a lot of feedback. It’s been great to hear other peoples’ stories of having gone through something similar with their gods, or who have seen similar issues between Freya and Loki in the past. It was kind of unusual, actually, that I posted about the drama on the blog. Normally I would have bitched about it to a few close friends and left it at that. But I gut checked before I posted, and got a green light, so… I posted. And like I said, I got quite a bit out of support and knowledge in doing so. (The Gods work in a multiplicity of ways; I can’t say for certain, but I wouldn’t be surprised if this reaction was one of their side goals from this incident.)

In any event, I can now say with some certainly that I know what Freya’s goal was for me out of all of this. I had to accept my role as Queen.

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Happily Heathen: My Journey to Devotional Polytheism

My newest post at Patheos’ Agora Column is up!

My Journey to Devotional Polytheism–The path I took from Christianity to Devotional Polytheism was guided by a need for direct interaction with deity and a desire to connect more with my ancestry. Heathenry gave me both. #WhyIAmHappilyHeathen

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/agora/2015/08/happily-heathen-my-journey-to-devotional-polytheism/

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.

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“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!

Love notes from Freya, July 9, 2015

Her: “Be soft and green, now; flexible and growing, not defensive and hard.” She sighs.  “There are many teams in this world, sweetheart. Life is a game played out on the world’s chessboard. Many allies are needed; many contracts have been made, broken, and shifted from one to another. There are contracts you entered into before you were born. There are contacts you will make after you are dead. These are important; you cannot get by without them, and I expressly forbid you to try to get by without them. Denying this will cause you pain, and you have received far too much of that already.” She turns away. Me: “Why? Why me? Why this?” Her, looking back over Her shoulder: “Why? Why? Because you are my daughter; you are part of family, my spirit. That is your life, for good or ill. And Life–Life is for the living.” She turns. “That is the only game We gods know to play.”

Random philosophy from my Lady. My apologies on the scant Love Notes recently. She’s been busy in my life doing deity shenanigans, and between my deity shenanigans, my boyfriend‘s deity shenanigans, and new friends‘ deity shenanigans, I’ve been pretty overwhelmed. And I’m currently not real pleased with my Lady; hence the tough talk today, likely. Yay for polytheism. *half-hearted pompom shake*

Freya and Fertility, my experiences with

boar piglets 4

Let’s talk about fertility, shall we?

Freya has a bunch of facets. One of the ones that has always been hardest for me to grasp, spiritually, has been the fertility aspect. I know it’s there–one of her symbols is the sow, which apparently in the day symbolized fertility for humans and animals (not plants–that’s Freyr). But whenever this was pointed out, I hemmed and hawed, because that just does not fit into my view of Her. I mean, She’s not a goddess of marriage or domesticity or children, for crying out loud. She’s just not the Mother Goddess type. There’s nothing in the myths or the sagas about her interacting with children, or being motherly in any way. In theory, depending on the sources, you can argue that she two daughters, but both of their names (Hnoss and Gersemi) are kennings for “treasure”, so in my mind, that’s still suspect. She is called on in a few bits of folklore here and there to help with ease in childbirth, but then again, what major goddess in any pantheon isn’t?

She’s a goddess of sex and power and money and essentially doing whatever the Hel She wants to, whenever She wants to do it. (Okay, so the sex thing can sometimes lead to fertility–true. But I’m pretty sure that’s not why Freya does it.)

This is all mainly to say that I just wasn’t buying the fertility connection. I’ve had this opinion for years–pretty much since I became a Heathen and started paying attention to things like Who was the Goddess of What in Norse mythology. And not much could change my mind on it.

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Why We Need Love Goddesses

Yes–a lot of this. A good point for those who don’t work for love gods, and some support for those of us surrounded by death and activism types–they need us, too.

The Road, the Walker, and What Comes Next

I’ve said plenty of times that the deities in my life are all chaos and death. Chaos n death, that’s the pattern.  It’s not a matter of me being especially chaotic or deadly, but something about the way I fit into the giant clockwork jigsaw of the universe makes me especially compatible with these Powers. We fit well together. It’s always been chaos n death.

Many polytheist and pagan types find themselves aligned with Powers that share very similar domains or characteristics. A person might find themselves surrounded by liminal characters, lots of gatekeepers and crossroads types; another might find frequent allies in watery deities, deities related to animals, or deities concerned with health and healing. And of course, some people find themselves surrounded by Love Goddesses(TM).

I never “got” love goddesses. (And yes, I know there are male-type Powers associated with love and the broad category of concerns that…

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