Who is the better pagan?

Hello Darlings,

 Today, I’d like to chat about something that’s been bothering me for quite some time.

 We’ve all been to events, workshops or whatever and seen someone or someones playing ‘Who’s the Better Pagan’. It makes me so irritable to listen to someone blather about themselves and how they’re 5th degree poobah blah blah yada yada with a family tradition that traces back ten thousand years.

Of Course You Are.

 I am always amazed that people actually believe this kind of thing works. Honestly, did you really believe that awkward, unpopular kid in high school actually had a super hot girlfriend or boyfriend desperately missing them because they just happened to live three states away?

 Of course not.

 It’s the same principal.

 It seems to me that too many people seem to think this course of action is going to some how grant them friends and influence people. Sadly, some of the time it does. There’s always someone who is willing to fall for this kind of fraudulent crapola.  I’ve talked to way too many people who’ve been damaged by one of these persons.

 It’s just ….. unsavory. That’s what it is.

 And how unfair is it to the innocently naive who falls into this trap. Unfortunately, so frequently with Pagan groups, it’s buyer beware. A body must do their research and check things out themselves before they start believing they have to cavort naked with the High Priest and that they simply cannot be  a ‘true’ Witch unless they act as the altar for the whole coven at the Great Rite.

 However, a conversation on that kind of Stupidity would take up a whole post in itself and I shall save it for another time. I will say that, in my experience, truly knowledgeable and powerful people tend to be modest and circumspect about what they do. So a person would be wise to cultivate relationships with the less bombastic in the group. You never know what you might discover.

 Now, back to the issue at hand, Darlings. We know you want to be Merlin or Gandolf or one of those ridiculously pretty girls from Charmed, but here’s the truth: You’re not. You’re just plain old you, suck it up and deal with what you’ve got. If, by the grace of the gods, you have some knowledge and skill in the witchy area, trust me. It will shine like a lighthouse on a foggy night. We’ll know about it. You don’t need to blow your own horn. We’ll blow it for you. ( I mean that in the most ladylike fashion, of course.)

 If you’re just joining a group, lying about who and what you are won’t give you the acceptance and love you crave. Only time and honesty can do that. If you’re trying to start a group it won’t last if it’s built on  dishonesty. Truly, if a body is so insecure and uncomfortable with who they are they need to invent or overinflate their accomplishments how can their Craft be effective?

 While I’m on the subject, Darlings. There are a few who’ve actually put in the time, learned their craft and earned a real title. If you’ve done this, huzzah! However, a slip of paper proclaiming you Supreme Queen of All That is Witchy is not an excuse to be a despot. Just because you took that two year mail order course and now can rattle off spell and charm ingredients at will does not mean you should use said skills to bully and belittle. (Shame, Shame, Shame on you!)

 Remember the Gods know all and see all. Eventually, the truth will out, bullys and liars will be ejected and left to slink off to the another state where, unfortunately, they probably will repeat their errors. And somebody else will have to clean up their mess. Don’t be that guy.

 Of course, if your patron happens to specialize in bullshit and deceit, well then, have at it. Quietly and neatly, please, so the rest of us don’t have to step in it. Otherwise, perhaps you should spend your time actually learning the path and how to use those skills and abilities you claim to have.

I suppose I should state, (though I would think this would be obvious) the statements in this post are not directed to those who are honestly 5th degree Poobah Blah Blah Yada Yada with a Family Tradition that traces back ten thousand years or  Supreme Queen of All That is Witchy and comport themselves in a manner of kindness, compassion and service to their fellow person.

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Redeisim (Posted Jan 10,2014)

Hello Darlings,

 Today, as you may have guessed by the title, we are going to discuss the Wiccan Rede. Actually, I’m going to discuss. What I’m going to discuss, darlings, is the last and some would say most important part of the Rede 

These Eight words the Rede fulfill:
“An Ye Harm None, Do What Ye Will”

Oh yes. There it is. Harm none.

 An excellent guideline to live by. Everyone should attempt to live in a way that harms nothing. Especially those of us who practice magic. We have power and that power can very easily get out of control.

 However.

 Is it possible to live upon this world and harm none? As a species, humans consume to survive. Thus, simply living on the planet causes harm. We kill to eat (even the vegans, though they like to pretend otherwise). Drive our cars, spewing pollution into the atmosphere.  Build our homes, which are consume energy and resources (more pollution). Toss trash all over our mother. No matter how careful we are, we cause harm. Our very immune systems kill viruses and germs. Don’t they have the same right to exist as we do?

 Just think about that for a few minutes, darlings.

 Now.

 Little else gets us here at The Common Witch more irritable than someone with a legitimate need of a little Gray asking for help and hearing all the Redeists whine. “But, but, but …. THE REDE!” and then blather about karmic backlash. They advise to wait for the universe to pay them back. So, little Ms. In need slinks off shamefaced and never practices effective magic again because she’s so worried about violating the Rede and earning a kick in the pants from karma along with the censure of the Redeists. 

 Well, hmmm, we’re all supposed to harm none and aren’t we part of that far famed ‘none’? Don’t we have the right to protect ourselves? Do you honestly believe our ancestors, if the big baddies of their world were heading their way, would decide to wait on the universe to pay them back? No, they opened a can of beat-your-butt.

 Also irritating is the trend of lacing every and all spells with addendums.  It’s nice to think of the highest good for all concerned. But when you’re working a spell to win the lottery so you can pay off those gambling debts, the highest good for all concerned may just be for someone else to win.

 Which brings me to the consequences portion of our discussion. Yes, darlings, everything has a price. Anything you do in this world has consequences, if you speed in your car, what are your possible consequences? Poor gas mileage? A speeding ticket? A blown engine? A fatal car accident?  You’ve got no way of knowing when you lay that lead foot down what the result will be. But I’ll bet you still speed, don’t you? You’ve decided the risk is worth the five extra minutes it will gain you.

 Isn’t working a spell like that as well? Sometimes a body does want to work for the highest good of all concerned. Most of the time not. The caster wants the work to benefit themselves or someone else. Then the task is to assess the possible consequences and decide if the work is really worth it.

 One must be bold and brave to work with magic. One must be sure of what they want and their intent. And above all, one must be willing to take the responsibility of said work. I know way too many witches who never get beyond collecting books of spells and attending weekend workshops because they just don’t want to accept the bitter and dark with the sweetness and light.

 A Common Witch understands the necessity of both and is willing to use what She needs to to accomplish the best for her and her loved ones.

 In all honesty, the necessity of being forced to do a work that’s truly black is tiny. There are always choice. However, as witches, we need to own our power. Use what we’ve got to help ourselves.  Not cower behind those eight little words.

 Isn’t that what why we chose this path in the first place?

Hello Darlings (posted Jan 7, 2014)

Hello Darlings.

 If you’re reading this blog you must have been intrigued by the title. Rather clever isn’t it. I can’t take all the credit. I had help.

 My darling friend, Sister Sparrow over at the Barbed  Pentacle has been after me to write one of these things and I’ve finally gotten so het up about what I’m seeing out there in the World of Things Pagan now I’m motivated.

 What has me all stirred and shaken my darlings?

 The appalling lack of the practical. Wiccans, witches, and Neo-what-all-evers all claim to follow “Old Ways” of one sort of the other and yet, more cases than not they haven’t a clue what the “old ways” are. They haven’t the first clue how to do a good old fashioned spell and spend more time indoors playing on the computer or watching HBO than in the temple of nature. They talk about raising energy without a clue as to how to do it. What little spell work done is so weighed down more disclaimers and cevats than a 90’s cellphone contract it’s a wonder anything gets accomplished.  And don’t get me started on the whining and infighting, darlings.

 Look, the old ways, what we know of them follow two paths. High and Low.

The High was the province of the idle rich, precisely because they were idle. They had the time to spend on long winded esoteric spellwork.  The Low was the magic of the poor. It was practical, quick and effective.  When your trying eek out a living a body doesn’t have the time to play. Both of these methods took knowledge, work and commitment. Something I find is disturbingly missing in today’s pagans.

Now days even what our society considers the poor have access to luxuries that our ancestors couldn’t fathom. Which I for one am indecently happy about. A person can walk into nearly any bookstore and buy any number of books on magic, witchcraft, or whatever. Also a lovely thing. The internet provides not only a plethora of information but anyone can order anything from anywhere.  Again, awesome. The downside is the laziness this has produced in modern pagans.

Yes, darlings, laziness.

 Learn to do the work yourselves!

Stop pretending to be something you’re not.